Peaky Blinders (Season 1)

STORY – 0
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 1
CULT – 0

 

VERDICT – 3/5

 
PROS –
1) The post-World War I saga of Shelby crime family. A definitive role for Cillian Murphy as Thomas Shelby, the head honcho of the gangster family also fighting his PTSD.
2) Sam Neill as Major Campbell, a no-nonsense officer on a mission under the order of Winston Churchill.
3) The greatest asset of this show is its fantastic cinematography and the brave soundtrack especially featuring Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, right from the opening theme song “Red Right Hand” to great tracks like “Brother, My Cup Is Empty.”
4) Great Costume Design.

 

CONS –
1) The primary run-of-the-mill theme of the rise of a gangster family is now done to death.

 

QUOTE –
Freddie Thorne: You think I can’t handle Tommy Shelby?
Aunt Polly: You can’t. I’m having trouble these days and I’m twice the man you are.

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Spartacus (1960)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 0
CULT – 1

VERDICT – 4/5

 
PROS –
1) Kirk Douglas as Spartacus with his impressive toned build.
2) Even in presence of legends like Laurence Olivier and Charles Laughton, Peter Ustinov as Batiatus outplayed all other actors.
3) Huge production value, epic battles, and moving climax.
4) Snails & Oysters conversation between Crassus and Antoninus. Subtle and impressive.
5) Charles Laughton as Gracchus got the wittiest dialogues as the shrewd Roman senator.
6) “I’m Spartacus!” scene is so powerful and influential that it’s now done-to-death in cinema all across the world.

 
CONS –
N/A

 

QUOTE –
“Gracchus: In Rome, dignity shortens life even more surely than disease.”

Ivanhoe (1952)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 0
CULT – 0

Verdict – 3/5

 

Pros –
1) Castle-siege battle sequence – uncanny similarity to the Battle of Helm’s Deep.
2) Fast paced screenplay with less melodrama
3) Presence of RobinHood as a minor character.
4) Elizabeth Taylor as Rebecca – mesmerizing beauty

 

Cons –
1) King Richard the Lionhearted is only a side-show.

 
Quote –
“King Richard the Lionhearted: Before me kneels a nation divided – rise as one man, and that one, for England!”

The Lion in Winter (1968)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 0
CULT – 1

Verdict – 4/5

 

Pros –

 

1) A must watch for moviegoers to know why Katharine Hepburn is the greatest female star.60 year old Hepburn playing Queen Eleanor opposite to 25 years younger Peter O’Toole.
2) The realistic approach by director showing the king Henry II ruling a palace which looks like a cow-shed.
3) The whole movie is filled with witty one-liners.
4) The chemistry of Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine is shown as an epitome of love-hate relationship of a power-couple.
5) Probably one of the greatest Christmas film where Christmas is the not the central theme like Die Hard.

 

Cons –

 

1) 134 minute running time will make this historical drama tedious.

 

 

Quote –

 

 

Henry II: It’s heavy… Oh Eleanor, you’ve brought me my tombstone! You spoil me!

Quiz Show (1994)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 0
CULT – 1

Verdict – 4/5

 

 

Pros –

 

1) John Turturro as Herb Stempel : effortless execution : one of his best role
2) Revealing true face of “show business”.
3) Paul Scofield & Ralph Fiennes : father-son subplot : Brilliant scene at family gathering quoting Shakespeare and summarizing the movie plot.
4) Final Courtroom scene

 

Cons –

 

n/a

 

 

Quote –

Mark Van Doren: It was a goddamn quiz show, Charlie.
Charles Van Doren: An ill-favored thing, sir…
Mark Van Doren: This is not the time to play games!
Charles Van Doren: At mine own, it was mine!
Mark Van Doren: Your name is mine!