FrameMovie-wise, we probably preferred Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me to Star Wars: The Phantom Menace.  Most of our film fare is viewed on VHS or DVD these days. Cinematically, Marlene has developed a taste for Peter Sellers, Woody Allen and Mel Brooks.  I donít know where she gets it.

Here are some of the memorable movies that I have seen this year.  Some of them are from last year, but I just got around to seeing them on video.  Iíve left out the many classics watched with my budding film buff daughter. 

200 Cigarettes

This would be a great one to revisit on New Years Day.  A delightful character study set to the music of the eighties.

Apostle, The

Perhaps a little long, but Robert Duvallís labor of love offers him his greatest role.

Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me

Mike Myerís may be the Peter Sellers of his generation.  This parody of sixties spy movies is actually a musical in disguise.

Blast from the Past

Brendon Fraser. Alicia Silverstone, Christopher Walken, and Sissy Spacek are delightful in this cold war comedy.


Kenneth Branagh impersonates Woody Allen, as a journalist whose work puts him in constant contact with beautiful people who arenít so beautiful.  Woody Allen impersonates Fellini directorially, in the tradition of Stardust Memories.

Detroit Rock City

Donít pass this one up, even if you never liked the rock group, Kiss. The exploits of the teenage fans trying to get ticketís to a Kiss concert will remind you of moments from American Graffiti and I Want to Hold Your Hand.

Ever After

Yet another retelling of the Cinderella story.  Drew Barrymore is as endearing as Angelica Huston is evil.


Stylish little story of drug deal gone bad, should keep you on the edge of your seat.

Gods and Monsters

Ian McKellen is superb as the aging James Whale, best remembered for directing The Bride of Frankenstein.  This film is dark, but witty, like Sunset Boulevard.

Little Voice

See this one just to see how evil Michael Caine can be. 

Mask of Zorro, The

A beautifully photographed and well-acted revision of the Zorro story.  Anthony Hopkins is great as the aging Zorro. Anthony Banderas is perfect as his overzealous successor.

Mighty, The

A great film about friendship. Kieran Culken and Elden Ratliff are wonderful together.

The Other Sister

Juliett Lewis stars as a mentally retarded girl eager to advance herself. Diane Keaton is her overprotective mother who canít let go.


Jeff Daniels always does his best work in period pieces.  Itís nice to see a film that brings a little color to a black and white world.

Prince of Egypt, The

Nice animated musical based on the book of Exodus.  Step aside Cecil B. DeMille, the new Moses is an Action/Adventure hero in the mold of Indiana Jones.

Shakespeare In Love

Gwyneth Paltrow is unforgettable as Shakespeareís muse. 

Simon Birch

Ian Michael Smith plays Simon Birch, an outspoken youth who believes he is destined to be Godís tool. 

Slums of Beverly Hills, The

Alan Arkin is wonderful as the father who wants only the best for his kids.  Natasha Lyonne shows great comedic potential as the daughter dealing with her sexual development. Carl Reiner does a funny cameo as Arkinís successful brother.

Snake Eyes

DePalma and Cage.  Stylized vision and moody performance.

Two Days In the Valley

Danny Aiello is a hit man with sensitive side.  James Spader is his sadistic opposite.  All the characters collide in the climactic moments.

Vertigo (Restored)

One of my favorite films of all time beautifully restored.  Both VHS and DVD include a documentary about the restoration of this Hitchcock classic.

Wedding Singer, The

Itís funny.  Especially if you have been a wedding photographer and a wedding DJ, like me.  See if you can dig up Altmanís A Wedding as a second feature.

Wishful Thinking

Told from three points of view.  We donít know all the facts until the end.  Good story.  Well acted.


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