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Spring Viewing

It's swordfights and sandals season around here.  That means I force my peeps to watch every movie my mom and I watched over the Easter Season, and then some.  It's the "some" that has taken over for the most part, as my latest viewing of The Ten Commandments didn't hold up to the test of time.  Other than Yul Brenner.  So, if you feel somewhat religious, or at least enjoy the entertainment value of any movie with a concept of Theology, then here a list for you.


It has swordfights.  It has sandals.  It has gladiators.  Gladiators who must eventually kill each other.  But not before they become friends against the machine.  One's black, one's white (isn't that always the way with Gladiators?), both have British Accents.  In fact, everyone in this movie has a British Accent, except for Kiefer Southerland, who dismally tries.  It has romance, it even has Horse Whisperers.  But that's not all . . . it also has, gasp!  Natural disasters galore!  Mount Vesuvius erupts of course, but we all knew that.  What we didn't know about were the earthquakes, the pyroclastic flows and the tsunamis that went with it. Oh, and did I mention Jon Snow?  It has Jon Snow, doing something productive that season HBO killed him off.  And all charmingly connected together by the Pompeiian remains of two lovers in their final embrace.  Even Chris managed to stay up and watch.


Why this movie didn't do well in theatres is beyond me.  I once saw an interview with Brad Pitt where he said he didn't understand the power of an entrance, until he made Legends of the Fall.  Perhaps he hadn't made this movie yet. I'd call it a skin flick.  Mostly his.


I remember seeing this movie in the theatre and the exact point where every woman in the audience finally got Russell Crowe.  Literally, there was a collective audible gasp as he takes to a stolen stead and defies the Emperor.


I've read Cleopatra's Memoirs, and this movie was historically very accurate.  Liz is just stunning, and Cleo is my favorite historical character.  The featurette included on the making of the film is a real piece of history itself, nearly putting Fox into bancrupcy. 

Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark

Still hasn't lost its magic.  Like being on a roller coaster for the entire film, and one of the best opening scenes Steven Spielburg has ever done.

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

The best of the entire series.  Ok, I get that Steve met his wife and all he could come up with was magic rocks for the second installment.  The premise for the fourth installment was nothing short of ludicris (especially since the History Channel did they best to debunk the Crystal Skull myths).  This story has meaning, it has Sean Connery and River Phoenix, may he rest in peace, and everything else you expect from an Indy movie.

The Natural

What kind of wife would I be if I didn't mention Baseball as a Spring passage.  My Husband doesn't count the days until Spring, he counts the days until "Pitchers and Catchers" day.  What can I say, its a Baseball movie.  It has Robert Redford in it.  Better than "Field of Dreams" or "Bull Durham" in my opinion.


Summer Movies We Love

Summer movie viewing starts June 1st, and goes through Labor Day Weekend.  During this time period, you are allowed to watch any of these movies as many times as you want as long as there is no MLB on the tube.  There are links to Amazon (I get nothing from this) at the bottom of the sidebar), if you are interested in purchasing these movies.


When this movie came out in theatres in 1975, no one had any idea who Steven Spielburg was, or how clunky the shark was when it even worked.  But no one went into the water the rest of that summer.  I couldn't sleep with my feet hanging off the bed.  No, it's not Snakes on a Plane, Jake.  In fact, its 45 minutes before you actually see the monster.  The suspense, the chemistry between the three main characters, and the music make this movie unforgettable.

The Deep

Actually, this movie is what I consider Peter Benchley's sequal to Jaws (as opposed to Jaws 2, or any of the remaining Hollywood digits).   You never know when you watch a movie you haven't seen in years whether it will hold up or not, but this one made it to the summer list.  The hairstyles and clothing that typically date movies are so classic and casual, and Bermuda prides itself on as little change as possible, so you really have a tough time placing the time period other than 20th century.  Robert Shaw died (at 51) shortly after making this movie, and here you get at least of glimpse of the handsome swashbuckler he played in his youth.  Nick Nolte and Jaqueline Bisset are at their most beautiful, and natural.  And as Chris points out, she doesn't wear a stitch of underwear in the entire movie.

Independence Day

Clever take on H.G.Wells,  "The War of the Worlds" (a childhood favorite, I loved being scared by movies), great special effects that still hold up rather well, three hunks, and none of the dark mess that became The War of the Worlds recent remake.  Plus it came out on July 4th weekend when it opened in the theatres.


Given the recent disasterous tornados across the entire country, it's hard to say I used watch this movie for fun.  It does, however, portray an accurate picture of what we know about tornados, and where our technology is, even today, and it's a lot more thrilling to watch than the home videos you typically see on the Weather Channel.  

Chris walks into the room and this movie is on.  "It's getting windy."

The Long Hot Summer (both versions)

Paul Newman is Paul Newman and he is at his clever handsome best.  I actually liked the remake with Don Johnson as well, but couldn't find it on DVD.  Both are just steamy.  Whoever wrote the review on Amazon got it right:  southern fried melodrama.

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

It's amazing what Elizabeth Taylor has done for full dress slips over the years.  (Love her, RIP) Why, why can't Paul Newman's character see that?