Saturday, September 3, 2011

16. Born on the Fourth of July (1989) 6/10


Thou shalt not kill, Mom. Thou shalt not kill women and children! Thou shalt not kill! Remember? Isn't that what you taught us? Isn't that what they taught us?

Quality - 3/5
Enjoyability - 3/5

I am ashamed to admit that throughout the two hour plus runtime of this movie I was expecting Tom Cruise to cut his hair, enter a courtroom, and have Jack Nicholson tell him "You want the truth? You can't handle the truth!". For some reason, I have always gotten this movie and "A Few Good Men" confused (and combined I guess).

Overall this movie (and Cruise especially) did an excellent job of telling one Vietnam vet's harrowing story. It is quite a shame that the story was such a sad one. The anti-war message was loud and clear, but I felt that the movie lost quite a bit of its oomph as it languished in the doldrums of the homefront. The film never regained the emotional wallop it attained during the young man's pre-war "run through the rain for that one last dance with your high school sweetheart at the prom you were planning on skipping" scene. All the message of "Platoon" with none of the immediacy or originality.

15. Ghost (1990) 7/10


-I love you Molly. I always have.

Quality 3/5
Enjoyability 4/5

I really, really wish I had seen this movie in the theater in 1990. It has the perfect mix of drama and fantasy that is one of the biggest reasons I love movies. The reason I have avoided it for so long, is its relatively simple story and the fact that, either on a VH1 special or referenced in another movie, I had already seen the most famous scenes many times over. One of the film's most impressive feats is developing the believability of the undying love of its main characters in the first fifteen minutes despite the age difference between Swayze and Moore (and the relatively wooden performances by each). Bottom line, if I had seen this film in 1990, it probably would have ended up being one of my favs. Beautiful romance with just a touch of fantasy is definitely gonna win me over.