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Cuckoo For Cuba Puffs

There's something of a Cuban invasion going on in this country lately. Wim Wenders' Buena Vista Social Club serves up some Cuban jazz, Ricky Martin shows us how to live "La Vida Loca," and coming this fall, Kevin Costner stars in the Missile Crisis drama, 13 Days (which, by title alone, suggests that it will be twice as long as John Frankenheimer's Missile Crisis drama Seven Days In May).

If you're looking to add a little more Cuba to your diet, consider these suggestions:

Michael Lalatozov's I Am Cuba When you look at the video box and see the bold "Martin Scorsese & Francis Ford Coppola presents" decree, you take it as a good sign until you remember Scorsese also presented us with the "I'm-dating-Illeana-Douglas" vanity project, Search & Destroy, while Coppola brought us the TV miniseries, The Odyssey. Ouch.

Fortunately, I Am Cuba lives up to its pedigree. Essentially a Cuban Triumph Of The Will, with its Pro-Castro vignettes, I Am Cuba is recommended to anyone who has drooled over the moving camera school of cinematography. The camera moves with such fluidity, it is easy to see the influence it had on Scorsese's tracking shots as well as the homage Paul Thomas Anderson paid with his underwater-in-a-pool shot in Boogie Nights. The camera flows off roofs, through fields, up buildings, over riots, through swamps, and down streets with an ethereal quality captured by Wim Wenders (again) in Wings Of Desire (and desperately missing from the sub-par "inspired by" City Of Angels). File under ILL CINEMA.

Other suggestions:

For those of you who prefer the library to the video store:

James Ellroy's American Tabloid, Elmore Leonard's Cuba Libre (optioned by the Coen Brothers), and of course, The Godfather Part II.


Mightier Than The Sword

What makes a good film critic? Some people might say a heightened sense of objectivity. I call those people fools. All you need is a stomachful of bile and a detached sense of self-restraint. Here's how it's done.

"Wild Wild West is a far cry from the series and even further from being a good film"

- Carl Cortez, EON Magazine (1999)

"Rainman is Dustin Hoffman humping one note on a piano for two hours and eleven minutes."

- Pauline Kael (1989)

"There are some films whose existence makes the world a worse place to live, and this is one of them."

- Kenneth Turan's review of 8MM (1998)

"Within the first five minutes, Emilio Estevez is dead. At this point, I'm thinking to myself, 'This could be the greatest movie ever made.'"

- Mr. Cranky's review of
Mission:Impossible (1996)

Where Have You Gone, James LeGros?

Back in the day, James LeGros was in God's pocket. Near Dark. Drugstore Cowboy, Born on the Fourth of July. In the early 90's, he became the male Parker Posey, popping up in every other indie film. But, after a critically lauded prima donna star turn in Tom DiCillo's Living In Oblivion, he seems to have fallen off the planet. His filmography lists Enemy of the State in his credits, but unless he played Guy Obscured By Pole, I didn't see him. Calling all cars...



Age of Reason?

Alone, In a Videostore: Renting at Random

Married With Cameos

The Walls Have Ears

Two Roads Diverged...
David Carradine vs. Michael Moriarty

Dad, Can I Have A DVD Player?

Have You Heard?
Episode 2 Rumors Printed Here First

Auteur Watch
John Sayles

One Man's Opinion (And Unrelated Anecdote)
Redemption Revisited

Seven Screams I Love About You
The Top Seven Screams of Veronica Cartwright

Films That Came And Went And You Didn't

We Watch Bad Movies So You Don't Have To
Patch Adams

If You Like Depressing Movies
Dream With Fishes

A Few Minutes In My Pants


Top 5 Movies Lists
Laura from Five Against Venus
The Donnas
Lisa Marr from Buck

Obsessive-Compulsive Movie Website

Shoutouts, Yet Another List & A Picture of a Monkey Playing Maracas


The Kathleen Turner Fun Page

Stop Me If You've Seen This One Before
Hook & X-Men

Movies With Heads In Boxes /
Movies Without Heads In Boxes

Obligatory Asia Argento Photo

[Insert Derek Jarman Joke Here]
Field of Queens

Iron Giant

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