Thursday, June 30, 2011

090 - Casablanca (1942)

Casablanca tells the story of a cynical bar owner in unoccupied French territory during the start of the Second World War.

Rick (Humphrey Bogart), an exiled American fighter, runs the best bar in Casablanca during the start of the Second World War. At this time, France owns Casablanca free from German rule although all sorts of nationalities can be found within the town. Casablanca is notoriously difficult to get away from due to the need for a visa from the police captain Renault.

Externally, Rick is neutral to everyone although he is able to perform subtle favours for those who he feels deserves them. He finds himself in possession of two illegal visas marked for the attention of the Czech underground leader Victor Lazslo (Paul Henreid) and, as Rick looks to pass on the visas immediately, his mind is changed as he meets his old flame (Ingrid Bergman) who is now Lazslo's wife, Isla Lund.

Rick must choose between allowing Lazslo to escape and continue his fight for freedom or keep the passes and the woman he once loved close by.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

089 - Carrie (1976)

Carrie tells the story of a telekinetic girl who exacts revenge on her school bullies.

Carrie (Sissy Spacek) doesn't fit in at school. Her mother is a religious preacher and when Carrie has her first period at school she panics because she doesn't know what is happening to her.

The other girls laugh at her earning themselves a week's detention in the process. One girl offers her beau to Carrie for the prom by way of reparation, but another is less forgiving leading to a final shocking showdown at the school prom.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Challenge Rules

Just a quick update to say that I'm still religiously following the rules which are  laid out on the "What Is It?" page.

Each film must be reviewed after it has been watched. Some days I owe movie reviews (e.g. I have seen Carrie but not reviewed it yet!) but each film has been reviewed once it is watched.

The list will be watched in alphabetical order. Perhaps the most stupid rule I have ever set up in my life. Nowadays I find myself not watching good films on the television because "they are on the list" and I will watch them within a couple of years. I am often told I could keep the review as a draft, but that would be cheating, right?

Each film will be bought as a DVD. OK, I lied - this is the most stupid rule I have ever set up. You would not believe how difficult it has been to source some films. Recently I have been looking abroad at the USA because some films aren't available in the UK. I also have one film from Spain (Black Robe - El Manto Negro) which was because the UK doesn't seem to have it. A word of advice to anyone setting themselves this rule - don't.

088 - Carousel (1956)

Source: Wikipedia
Carousel tells the story of a former carousel barker who is allowed one more day on earth to visit his wife and daughter.

Billy Bigelow (Gordon MacRae) is told that he is allowed one final day in earth to see his family but initially waives the right. From here he launches into the story of his life.

When he was alive as a carousel barker, Billy meets Julie (Shirley Jones) and, after being fired from his job by his boss Mrs Mullin, he marries Julie soon after. Billy and Julie move to Julie's cousin's property on the coast where Billy decides it is easier living off her cousin that finding himself a job. After being told that Julie is pregnant, Billy must choose whether to go back to a life of crime or be unable to support his child.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Social Network (2010)

Theatrical Poster
Source: Wikipedia
The Social Network tells of the story of the rise of Facebook, based on the book The Accidental Billionnaires by Ben Mezrich.

In 2003, Havard University student Mark Zuckerburg (Jesse Eisenberg) has just been dumped by his girlfriend. As revenge he posts horrible comments about her on his personal blog and sets up the website FaceMash where students can compare faces of girls on campus and rank them.

While this gains him notoriety on Havard Campus it does him very few favours with his girlfriend or his popularity and least of all with the College's board. Upon being given 6 months study leave he is approached by the Winklevoss twins, Cameron and Tyler (both played by Armie Hammer) who ask him to help with their project to create an exclusive social networking site.

Meanwhile, the story flashes to present day 2010 where Zuckerberg is being challenged by the twins for the rights for his new website, Facebook.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

087 - Carnival Of Souls (1962)

Carnival Of Souls tells the story of a woman who is stalked by a demon after miraculously surviving a car crash.

Mary Henry (Candace Hilligoss) is a local church organist. After being passenger in a car crash during a drag race where her car is forced off a bridge she somehow escapes with her life despite having been underwater for hours.

She tries to resume a normal life but after moving to Utah to escape her previous life she is haunted by a mysterious demon apparition.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

086 - Carnival In Flanders (1935)

Carnival In Flanders tells the story of how a group of women save a town from invaders after the men desert.

As the town of Boom in Flanders prepares for the carnival, the mayor commissions a large painting of the town's leaders. As the painter steadies himself to ask the mayor for his daughter's hand in marriage the mayor promises her to his deputy.

Meanwhile, Spanish scouts enter the city informing residents that their Duke plans to spend the night sending the mayor and his team into panic for fear of rape, pillage and plunder. The mayor plays dead, leaving the women to take charge and entertain the invaders on their own.

Monday, June 20, 2011

085 - Carlito's Way (1993)

Carlito's Way tells of a gangster's struggle to go good after his release from prison.

Carlito Brigante (Al Pacino) has had a lot of thinking time in prison and after being released on a technicality found by his drug-ridden lawyer (Sean Penn) he dreams of a better life away from New York.

He decides he must save up $75,000 in order to buy into a car rental firm in the Bahamas where he plans to retire to with his ex-girlfriend Gail (Penelope Ann Miller).

One thing leads to another and Carlito finds himself defending his honour from a worse position than before his time inside.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

084 - Capote (2005)

Capote tells the biographical story of a famous author as he researches two serial killers for his new book.

Truman Capote is a true crime writer famous for his short stories often published in newspapers. Upon reading an article from The New York Times he becomes fascinated with a mass murder in Kansas.

He travels to Kansas with his friend Harper Lee (writer of To Kill A Mockingbird) where he meets the community to gain an understanding of how they function. Finally, he meets the killers and his book takes a dramatic turn.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

AFI's 100 Years... 100 Movies (1998)

65 remaining
In 1998 the American Film Institute produced a list of 100 feature length films from the United States of America that had a significant social impact. This list would go on to later be updated in 2007 with significant changes.
  1. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Citizen Kane (1941)
  2. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Casablanca (1942)
  3. ✓ see review ★★★★★ The Godfather (1972)
  4. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Gone With The Wind (1939)
  5. Lawrence of Arabia (1962)
  6. The Wizard of Oz (1939)
  7. ✓ see review ★★★★ The Graduate (1967)
  8. On the Waterfront (1954)
  9. Schindler's List (1993)
  10. Singin' in the Rain (1952)
  11. It's a Wonderful Life (1946)
  12. Sunset Blvd. (1950)
  13. ✓ see review ★★★★★ The Bridge On The River Kwai (1957)
  14. Some Like It Hot (1959)
  15. Star Wars (1977)
  16. ✓ see review ★★★★★ All About Eve (1950)
  17. The African Queen (1951)
  18. Psycho (1960)
  19. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Chinatown (1974)
  20. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)
  21. ✓ see review ★★★★ The Grapes of Wrath (1940)
  22. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
  23. The Maltese Falcon (1941)
  24. Raging Bull (1980)
  25. ✓ see review ★★★★★ E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial (1982)
  26. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Dr. Strangelove Or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Bomb (1964)
  27. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Bonnie And Clyde (1967)
  28. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Apocalypse Now (1979)
  29. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)
  30. The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948)
  31. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Annie Hall (1977)
  32. ✓ see review ★★★★★ The Godfather Part II (1974)
  33. ✓ see review ★★★★★ High Noon (1952)
  34. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
  35. It Happened One Night (1934)
  36. Midnight Cowboy (1969)
  37. The Best Years of Our Lives (1946)
  38. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Double Indemnity (1944)
  39. ✓ see review ★★★★ Doctor Zhivago (1965)
  40. North by Northwest (1959)
  41. West Side Story (1961)
  42. Rear Window (1954)
  43. King Kong (1933)
  44. The Birth of a Nation (1915)
  45. A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)
  46. ✓ see review ★★★★ A Clockwork Orange (1971)
  47. Taxi Driver (1976)
  48. Jaws (1975)
  49. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)
  50. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid (1969)
  51. The Philadelphia Story (1940)
  52. From Here to Eternity (1953)
  53. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Amadeus (1984)
  54. ✓ see review ★★★★★ All Quiet On The Western Front (1930)
  55. The Sound of Music (1965)
  56. MASH (1970)
  57. The Third Man (1949)
  58. ✓ see review ★★★★ Fantasia (1940)
  59. Rebel Without a Cause (1955)
  60. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
  61. Vertigo (1958)
  62. Tootsie (1982)
  63. Stagecoach (1939)
  64. ✓ see review ★★★★ Close Encounters Of The Third Kind (1977)
  65. The Silence of the Lambs (1991)
  66. Network (1976)
  67. The Manchurian Candidate (1962)
  68. An American in Paris (1951)
  69. Shane (1953)
  70. ✓ see review ★★★★★ The French Connection (1971)
  71. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Forrest Gump (1994)
  72. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Ben-Hur (1959)
  73. Wuthering Heights (1939)
  74. ✓ see review ★★★★ The Gold Rush (1925)
  75. Dances with Wolves (1990)
  76. ✓ see review ★★★★★ City Lights (1931)
  77. American Graffiti (1973)
  78. Rocky (1976)
  79. ✓ see review ★★★★★ The Deer Hunter (1978)
  80. The Wild Bunch (1969)
  81. Modern Times (1936)
  82. Giant (1956)
  83. Platoon (1986)
  84. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Fargo (1996)
  85. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Duck Soup (1933)
  86. Mutiny on the Bounty (1935)
  87. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Frankenstein (1931)
  88. Easy Rider (1969)
  89. Patton (1970)
  90. The Jazz Singer (1927)
  91. My Fair Lady (1964)
  92. A Place in the Sun (1951)
  93. ✓ see review ★★★★★ The Apartment (1960)
  94. ✓ see review ★★★★ GoodFellas (1990)
  95. Pulp Fiction (1994)
  96. The Searchers (1956)
  97. ✓ see review ★★★★ Bringing Up Baby (1938)
  98. Unforgiven (1992)
  99. Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (1967)
  100. Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

083 - Candyman (1992)

Candyman is a film about a killer who appears after you say his name five times in a mirror.

During her thesis, Helen Lyle (Virginia Madsen) writes a report on serial killers. One such urban legend is the Candyman - a man born in the 19th Century who is brutally murdered by bees and is back from the dead to haunt anyone that says his name five times in a mirror.

Disbelieving of all the warnings, Helen utters the words and Candyman returns complete with his hooked arm.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

082 - Camille (1936)

Camille is a 19th Century love story about a Parisian courtesan who must choose between love or wealth.

Having gone from having nothing to having a full life of luxury in a matter of a couple of years, it is difficult to see why Marguerite Gautier (Greta Garbo) would have any reason to leave the Baron de Varville (Henry Daniell).

But, after meeting Armand Duval (Robert Taylor) at the theatre, Marguerite falls for his charms and after risking everything to be with him is told by Armand's father to leave and return to her life of luxury.

Monday, June 13, 2011

081 - The Cabinet Of Dr. Caligari (1920)

The Cabinet Of Dr. Caligari tells the story of Dr. Caligari and his somnambulist (someone who sleeps with a low consciousness) whose predictions come true.

Narrator Francis and his friend Alan visit a carnival where Dr. Caligari brings his somnambulist, Cesare, along as an attraction. As Caligari boldly claims that Cesare can explain anyone's future, Alan asks when he might die to which Cesare says by dawn.

The prediction comes true and Cesare is believed to be the murderer with Caligari as the puppet master.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Films 081 - 090

Here are the next ten films in the Empire 5-star challenge:
  1. The Cabinet Of Caligari (1920)
  2. Camille (1936)
  3. Candyman (1992)
  4. Capote (2005)
  5. Carlito's Way (1993)
  6. Carnival In Flanders (1935)
  7. Carnival Of Souls (1962)
  8. Carrie (1976)
  9. Carousel (1956)
  10. Casablanca (1942)
So, finally the films beginning with "B" are over. As previously mentioned though, the 'C' films are even longer so I won't be finished with them until past number 120, when I approach a quarter of the way through the whole challenge. Wow.

After taking a huge break before The Bridge Over The River Kwai (my family were desperate to watch that with me - and I couldn't break the rules and skip it now, could I?), these ten films feel like they have taken an absolute age. I really really strongly recommend you watch Boyz N The Hood though. It was a fantastic film.

As for these next ten... I spot a couple of musicals immediately which ought to be fun. I've already seen The Cabinet Of Dr Caligari (earlier) so the review for that one will be posted up soon too - possibly even tomorrow.

The columns of DVDs in my house are beginning to mount up now. They are, if nothing more, providing good dark spaces against the ceiling for spiders to live in. On another note, I have managed to find another good source for second hand DVDs though - car boot sales. I managed to pick up 13 for £13 last week. If you decide to do this though, I urge you to check for counterfeit goods before you buy.

Anyway... until next time!

080 - Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid (1969)

Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid is the story of two cowboys who are the nicest bad-guys in the West.

As America begins to become more civilised, the days for the train and bank robbers are becoming numbered. As Butch Cassidy (Paul Newman) and his sidekick Sundance (Robert Redford) - with their Hole In The Wall gang - hold up their final train a surprise is in store.

They are chased out of the country and, under the advice of Butch, the twosome head to Bolivia where they hope that the lack of technology can help them become great robbers again. The only problem is, neither of them know the Spanish for "this is a stick up".

Saturday, June 11, 2011

079 - A Bucket Of Blood (1959)

A Bucket Of Blood is the story of an aspiring artist who creates clay models from his murdered victims.

Walter Paisley (Dick Miller) is a waiter at a café that often hosts some of the finest artists around. He is heavily influenced by poet Maxwell Brock and aspires to be a great artist like him.

One night at home his landlady informs him that her cat is missing and, upon hearing it in the wall he tries to free it. He accidentally kills the cat but spots an opportunity and covers it in clay.

He shows the artists at the café and they appreciate his work. Upon hearing such applaud, Walter continues his artistic streak by creating clay models of human victims.

Gladiator (2000)

Theatrical Poster
Source: Wikipedia
Gladiator is the story of a Roman general who becomes a gladiator to avenge the death of his wife and child at the hands of the new corrupt Emperor.

After serving in against the Germanic rebels, Maximus (Russell Crowe) is told by the dying Emperor (Richard Harris) that he is to succeed him. The Emperor's son, Commodus (Joaquin Phoenix) has other ideas and kills his father and claims his right to be Caesar.

Commodus ousts Maximus and orders him to be killed along with his wife and child. Maximus escapes but arrives too late to save his family. Exhausted, he is taken by slave traders where he bought by Proximo (Oliver Reed) who tells him he must fight in order to gain his freedom to exact his revenge.

Friday, June 10, 2011

078 - Brokeback Mountain (2005)

Brokeback Mountain tells the story of the life of two cowboys after their meeting on Brokeback Mountain.

Jack Twist (Jake Gyllenhaal), a rodeo cowboy, and Ennis Del Mar (Heath Ledger), a ranch hand, meet in the summer of 1963 as they herd sheep up Brokeback Mountain in the rolling Wyoming countryside.

They leave to return to their normal lives - Ennis is married in November '63, and Jack continues to court other women until his eventual marriage some years later. They both continue to see each other three times a year forming a life-long bond of love and friendship.

Thursday, June 09, 2011

077 - Broadcast News (1987)

Broadcast News follows two competing television news reporters in work and in affairs of the heart.

Neither reporter is perfect; Tom Grunick (William Hurt) has the looks and ability to pull off any on-the-spot anchoring position but lacks the knowledge of the industry, while Aaron Altman (Albert Brooks) has been working hard since his education in order to achieve a high position, but is constantly overlooked by his superiors.

While they differ in talents, they are both fond of their producer - Jane Craig (Holly Hunter). Meanwhile, she is focused solely on her job and has no time for anything other than a very efficient schedule.

All-TIME 100 Movies

78 remaining
In early 2005, TIME magazine presented their 100 best films as chosen by their critics Richard Corliss and Richard Schickel. You can view this on the TIME website.

  1. Aguirre: The Wrath of God (1972)
  2. ✓ see review ★★★★★ The Apu Trilogy (1955, 1956, 1959)
  3. The Awful Truth (1937)
  4. Baby Face (1933)
  5. Bande à part (1964)
  6. Barry Lyndon (1975)
  7. Berlin Alexanderplatz (1980)
  8. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Blade Runner (1982)
  9. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Bonnie And Clyde (1967)
  10. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Brazil (1985)
  11. ✓ see review ★★★★★ The Bride Of Frankenstein (1935)
  12. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Camille (1936)
  13. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Casablanca (1942)
  14. Charade (1963)
  15. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Les Enfants Du Paradis (1945)
  16. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Chinatown (1974)
  17. Chungking Express (1994)
  18. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Citizen Kane (1941)
  19. ✓ see review ★★★★★ City Lights (1931)
  20. ✓ see review ★★★★★ City Of God (2002)
  21. Closely Watched Trains (1966)
  22. The Crime of Monsieur Lange (1936)
  23. The Crowd (1928)
  24. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Day For Night (1973)
  25. The Decalogue (1989)
  26. Detour (1945)
  27. ✓ see review ★★★★★ The Discreet Charm Of The Bourgeoisie (1972)
  28. Dodsworth (1936)
  29. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Double Indemnity (1944)
  30. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Dr. Strangelove Or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Bomb (1964)
  31. Drunken Master II (1994)
  32. ✓ see review ★★★★★ E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial (1982)
  33. 8 1/2 (1963)
  34. ✓ see review ★★★★ The 400 Blows (1959)
  35. Farewell My Concubine (1993)
  36. Finding Nemo (2003)
  37. ✓ see review ★★★★★ The Fly (1986)
  38. The Godfather
    1. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Part I (1972)
    2. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Part II (1974)
  39. ✓ see review ★★★★★ The Good, The Bad And The Ugly (1966)
  40. ✓ see review ★★★★ GoodFellas (1990)
  41. A Hard Day's Night (1964)
  42. His Girl Friday (1940)
  43. Ikiru (1952)
  44. In A Lonely Place (1950)
  45. Invasion Of The Body Snatchers (1956)
  46. It's A Gift (1934)
  47. It's A Wonderful Life (1946)
  48. Kandahar (2001)
  49. Kind Hearts And Coronets (1949)
  50. King Kong (1933)
  51. The Lady Eve (1941)
  52. The Last Command (1928)
  53. Lawrence Of Arabia (1962)
  54. Léolo (1992)
  55. Lord Of The Rings Trilogy
  56. The Man With a Camera (1929)
  57. The Manchurian Candidate (1962)
  58. Meet Me in St. Louis (1944)
  59. Metropolis (1927)
  60. Miller's Crossing (1990)
  61. Mon oncle d'Amérique (1980)
  62. Mouchette (1967)
  63. Nayakan (1987)
  64. Ninotchka (1939)
  65. Notorious (1946)
  66. Olympia, Parts 1 and 2 (1938)
  67. On the Waterfront (1954)
  68. Once Upon a Time in the West (1968)
  69. Out of the Past (1947)
  70. Persona (1966)
  71. Pinocchio (1940)
  72. Psycho (1960)
  73. Pulp Fiction (1994)
  74. The Purple Rose of Cairo (1985)
  75. Pyaasa (1957)
  76. Raging Bull (1980)
  77. Schindler's List (1993)
  78. The Searchers (1956)
  79. Sherlock, Jr. (1924)
  80. The Shop Around the Corner (1940)
  81. Singin' in the Rain (1952)
  82. The Singing Detective (1986)
  83. Smiles of a Summer Night (1955)
  84. Some Like It Hot (1959)
  85. Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977)
  86. A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)
  87. Sunrise (1927)
  88. Sweet Smell of Success (1957)
  89. Swing Time (1936)
  90. Talk to Her (2002)
  91. Taxi Driver (1976)
  92. Tokyo Story (1953)
  93. A Touch of Zen (1971)
  94. Ugetsu (1953)
  95. Ulysses' Gaze (1995)
  96. Umberto D (1952)
  97. Unforgiven (1992)
  98. White Heat (1949)
  99. Wings of Desire (1987)
  100. Yojimbo (1961)

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

076 - Bringing Up Baby (1936)

Bringing Up Baby is a screwball comedy that spirals out of control as mild-mannered David Huxley meets eccentric heiress Susan Vance.

As secluded scientist David (Cary Grant) prepares to celebrate both the finding of the final bone in his brontosaurus skeleton and his impending marriage, he bumps into the scatterbrained Susan Vance (Katharine Hepburn) on a golf course.

From that moment he is swept into a whirlwind of absurd situations that he has neither the capacity nor the authority to gain control of. He finds himself travelling from New York to Connecticut in a stolen car with a tame leopard in the back as each new moment ceases to help him return to his fiancée.

Disney Animated Classics

47 remaining
Below is the full list of currently released animated films from Disney in chronological order.
  1. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)
  2. Pinocchio (1940)
  3. ✓ see review ★★★★ Fantasia (1940)
  4. ✓ see review ★★★★ Dumbo (1941)
  5. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Bambi (1942)
  6. Saludos Amigos (1942)
  7. The Three Caballeros (1944)
  8. Make Mine Music (1946)
  9. Fun and Fancy Free (1947)
  10. Melody Time (1948)
  11. The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad (1949)
  12. Cinderella (1950)
  13. Alice in Wonderland (1951)
  14. Peter Pan (1953)
  15. Lady and the Tramp (1955)
  16. Sleeping Beauty (1959)
  17. One Hundred and One Dalmatians (1961)
  18. The Sword in the Stone (1963)
  19. The Jungle Book (1967)
  20. The Aristocats (1970)
  21. Robin Hood (1973)
  22. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (1977)
  23. The Rescuers (1977)
  24. The Fox and the Hound (1981)
  25. The Black Cauldron (1985)
  26. The Great Mouse Detective (1986)
  27. Oliver & Company (1988)
  28. The Little Mermaid (1989)
  29. The Rescuers Down Under (1990)
  30. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Beauty And The Beast (1991)
  31. ✓ see review ★★★★★ Aladdin (1992)
  32. The Lion King (1994)
  33. Pocahontas (1995)
  34. The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996)
  35. Hercules (1997)
  36. Mulan (1998)
  37. Tarzan (1999)
  38. Fantasia/2000 (1999)
  39. Dinosaur (2000)
  40. The Emperor's New Groove (2000)
  41. Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001)
  42. Lilo & Stitch (2002)
  43. Treasure Planet (2002)
  44. Brother Bear (2003)
  45. Home on the Range (2004)
  46. Chicken Little (2005)
  47. Meet the Robinsons (2007)
  48. Bolt (2008)
  49. The Princess and the Frog (2009)
  50. Tangled (2010)
  51. Winnie The Pooh (2011)
  52. ✓ see review ★★★★ Wreck-It Ralph (2012)
  53. Frozen (2013)

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

075 - The Bridge On The River Kwai (1957)

The Bridge On The River Kwai follows British Prisoners of War as they build a bridge in Burma over the River Kwai.

Colonel Nicholson (Alec Guinness) and his platoon have been captured and are now prisoners of war under Japanese command. A long-standing prisoner, Shears (William Holden), makes his escape on the first night as Nicholson refuses to work under rules set down in the Geneva Convention.

As work on the bridge continues, Shears returns with a small group of allies to blow up the bridge as the first train is due to make its crossing.

Monday, June 06, 2011

Fantastic 4: Rise Of The Silver Surfer (2007)

Theatrical Poster
Source: Wikipedia
This film is not on the Empire 500.

Fantastic 4: Rise Of The Silver Surfer is a sequel comic book super hero movie, following Mr Fantastic, Invisible Woman, Human Torch and The Thing as they battle again to save the world.

This time it is the threat of a mysterious meteorite that is freezing part of the earth's surface and creating giant holes each time it flies by. The group must find out what's causing it by getting to the source of the meteorite.

Meanwhile, Mr Fantastic (Ioan Gruffudd) and Invisible Woman (Jessica Alba) are trying to get through their wedding, isolating the Human Torch (Chris Evans) and The Thing (Michael Chiklid) as they both fear that the group will be split up and replaced by a family.

Sunday, June 05, 2011

The Door (2009)

Theatrical Poster
This film is not on the Empire 500.

The Door (Die Tür) is a German film that follows a man who finds a door that sends him 5 years into the past.

After finding his daughter dead in the swimming pool following his affair with a neighbour, David (Mads Mikkelsen) finds himself out of luck with his ex-wife (Jessica Schwarz) as the film forwards by 5 years.

He attempts suicide, but following his rescue he finds a door that sends him back to the time of his daughter's death. He saves her but kills his past self in an ensuing struggle. As he tries to adapt to replace himself in his past life, all is not as it seems.

Saturday, June 04, 2011

X-Men: First Class (2011)

Theatrical Poster
Source: Wikipedia
X-Men: First Class returns to the founding of Charles Xavier's mutant heroes.

In a concentration camp during the Second World War, Erik Lensherr (Michael Fassbender) is taught to use anger to control metal with his mentor Dr. Schmidt - at the expense of his mother and father. Meanwhile, Charles Xavier (James McEvoy) is growing up with a telekinetic mind with his adopted sister, Raven, who is able to change shape at will.

The years roll on and Erik Lensherr hunts his former mentor and runs into Xavier who promises to help him in his search. As Sebastian Shaw - the real identity of Dr. Schmidt - begins to exert his influence in politics to increase tensions in the Cold War, Xavier and Lensherr must find other mutants in order to help them stop Shaw from destroying the world during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

The Hangover Part II (2011)

Theatrical Poster
Phil (Bradley Cooper), Alan (Zach Galifianakis) and Doug (Justin Bartha) join Stu (Ed Helms) in Thailand for his second wedding. Things can't go wrong again, can they?

Stu is content with a quiet 'pre-wedding brunch', but he is cornered into joining the wolf pack for one final drink around a beach camp fire with Teddy - his fiancée's high achieving perfect brother.

After Stu, Phil and Alan awake in a run-down Bangkok apartment, they must piece together the events of the night before to find out the whereabouts of Teddy using vague clues and suppressed memories.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Buried (2010)

Theatrical Poster
This film is not in the Empire 500.

Buried is the events of a man that finds himself buried alive in a wooden box.

Paul Conway (Ryan Reynolds) awakens in the pitch black. He has been buried alive in a coffin and has nothing but a zippo lighter and mobile phone.

He frantically makes a few phone calls to the American emergency services recalling the events leading up to his premature burial - he was an American truck driver who was captured in Iraq and is now being held hostage.

Paul must try to find his way out before the oxygen in his box depletes, the battery in his phone depletes and his chance of survival... is zero.