Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Two Good Movies

As I mentioned last week, I borrowed four movies from the local library. 

I have since watched a couple more. Hemingway's Adventures of A Young Man was made in 1962. It was filled with quite a few 'stars' of the time, like Paul Newman, Eli Wallach, Dan Dailey, Diane Baker and starring Richard Beymer. 

The film covers the life of a young man, played by Richard Beymer, attempting to 'move out' from under his family's wing. He takes the leap and heads for NYC in search of employment with a newspaper company.

A lot happens along the way to his dream job, including enlisting in the war, the first World War. 

The film is dated and the sets are just that....mostly sets and this is obvious. You know how some older films look and sound like a 'broadway' play? But it is a good movie nonetheless. Mostly due to Richard Beymer and Diane Baker, his love interest. It is a good movie with good old-fashioned morals and values.

Now I come to the film that I feel was the best one of the four I chose, by far. It is William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice

Al Pacino! The movie was Al Pacino. He was incredible as the Jewish money-lender, Shylock.  Lyn Collins played the role of Portia. Besides being very beautiful to look at, she gave a very strong and convincing performance as a very strong woman who knew what she wanted from a man.

Joseph Fiennes plays the role of Bassanio. He wants the 'hand' of Portia but in order to do so he borrows a lot on money from his close friend, Antonio (Jeremy Irons). And thus the plot 'takes off'.

Fiennes is very convincing in his pursuit of Portia and his 'love' for his friend, Antonio.

Jeremy Irons' role was very dramatic and gut-wrenching. Without being overly negative about his performance, suffice it to say I am not a fan of his work but I do accept he has talent. Maybe it's his intensity and vigor he puts into his roles that I don't appreciate and find exhausting......far too dramatic and difficult to watch. Enough said.

If you can, see this film. It is so educational on many levels......friendship, romance, racism, bigotry, religion, history, the English language.

No wonder it was rated one of 2005's Best Pictures. Hope you get a chance to see this movie. It is jam-packed with everything and very entertaining.


  1. I love old movies! I will rarely sit still for a new one but a good old"oldie" will get me every time! I haven't seen that first one,I am going to look for it.

  2. I used to get movies from the library all the time, but haven't for a while, I bet they have a bunch of new ones by now! Soon as I can see to drive, I think I will be going and checking some out again!

    Have a good day!

  3. Hi Jim,thanx for your wonderfull movie reviews, I also love Al Pacino,I think he is the most incredible actor,I love his presence on-screen. You have just reminded me that I always take out books from our local library,but guess what,I have stupidly never yet even looked at the movie section,will def. rectify that! Have a blessed day@!@!

  4. You know, I may have seen that version of the Merchant of Venice. Your description of the actors rings a vague bell with me. Oh dear, I'm getting old, old, old . . . can't remember things like I used to.

  5. I normally don't care for Shakespeare but I think I might be checking out the Pacino version soon (I think I passed it up on one of the cable channels recently). I LOVE Jeremy Irons because he really does take on some majorly creepy roles. Yes, he can definitely chew up the scenery but that doesn't bother me. Your post gave me an idea--I have a HUGE amount of DVDs and I think I just might donate them to the local library. I was thinking about selling them at the flea market but would only get a couple bucks for each, at best. Thanks!!

  6. Hmmmm, I never considered looking at the movie section in the library. I'll have to get over there and take a look. Thanks for the reviews. I, too, am a lover of the old movies, and will generally choose to see an old one over a newer one.

  7. One of my favorite things to do with the kids is at night is to turn on TCM (turner classic movies). We have watched some really great movies and some super silly horror flicks; which the boys adore. Oh! I adored THE READER with Kate Winslet, thought she did an outstanding job as the prison guard. Happy Thanksgiving, Mal

  8. Haven't seen either movies, but they both sound like they'd be the perfect addition to my etflix queue :)

  9. Interesting... I know Ralph Fiennes work very well, but I forgot he has a brother Joseph Fiennes.

    On Jeremy Irons, his best role was the 1997 movie "Lolita" but I'm afraid you are right about the rest of his films.

    I love movies, and have tried to watch a different movie every evening for, oh gosh, years and years now. =) Thanks for the reviews!

    P.S. I am a huge fan of netflix, now in Canada, right? Best service I ever had.

  10. I seem to remember when The Merchant of Venice came out but I never went to see it at the theater. Mentioning how some movies are dated, I caught a rerun of "Pretty Woman" on television a couple of weeks ago. Richard Gere was driving a convertible and was talking on a "car phone" that was as big as a shoe box, LOL. We've come a long way with technology!

    The camera I got was a point and shoot (I really don't need anything like a DSLR or extra lenses) Canon Powershot S95. It's an upgrade from my old Canon, which I was having some issues with mechanically. The pictures of Tootie were the first shots with the new one. Hopefully I 'll get better as I learn the camera.


  11. Thanks for the recommendation. I would love to see The Merchant of Venice. And what a cast! Great review. Reminds me I have a book to review for tomorrow. Oh, well, life is good.--Inger

  12. I'll look for The Merchant of Venice next library trip.

  13. I've already put The Reader in my Netflix queue and Hemmingway's Adventures of a Young Man looks like it might be one I'd like. I'm not much for Shakespeare though so I'll probably pass on that one. I'm enjoying your movie reviews!!

  14. I have a huge crush on the Fiennes' brothers! I will have to check this out and get my fix eh?

  15. allo mon amie- oh i never did ask you if you speak french or not! one of my fave things to do is watch movies... we would get along well...

    i know you dont have thaanksgiving this thursday but i wanted to send some warmth and love your way... i am thankful to have you as a bloggy buddy...

    take care...


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