Movie Review: The Da Vinci Code (2006)

Good ideas that read better than they film

This isn’t to put down the fine cast and expression of sublime ideas that cause everyone to catch their breath the first time they hear them. It’s just the nature of the ideas.

For those of you who were not swept up in The Da Vinci Code book, it was quite the page turner:  An author and scholar specializing in cultural symbols, Dr. Langdon, visits Paris, France, to deliver a series of lectures.  As he is finishing one of them, a police inspector (Fache) approaches him and insists Langdon accompany him to the Louvre.

There the curator (Saunière) has seemingly been killed or committed suicide in a bizarre fashion, leaving clues in his blood stains and body position specifically for Dr. Langdon to decipher.  This seems evidence to Fache that Langdon has something to do with the curator’s death, enough to charge and imprison Langdon.  Yet Sophie Neveu, a policewoman, intervenes and secrets Langdon away.

The chase is on. Continue reading

Movie Review: Charlie Wilson’s War (2007)

Back when only commies committed war crimes

Charlie_WilsonJoanne Herring: Why is Congress saying one thing and doing nothing?
Charlie Wilson: Well, tradition mostly.

Charlie Wilson’s War is a good little movie.  [Tom Hanks is like Clint Eastwood: no matter what they do, the film is always going to be fun and interesting to watch.]  Hanks plays real life US Congressman Charles Wilson, a representative from the 2d Congressional district in East Texas 1973-1997.

He’s from a relatively simple background and so are the people he serves: “They really don’t want much, just leave them alone, let them have their guns, and be honest with them… they’ll reelect you forever.” Charlie is a good-hearted man who basically likes to party hearty; then one day in the early ’80s while lounging in a hot tub with a Playboy Bunny and other ‘associates’ in Vegas he gets religion. Continue reading

Movie Review: From the Earth to the Moon (1998)

Hanks’ creation is another national treasure (10/10)

EarthMoonNote: at the time that I’m reposting this original review from 2008, I have become aware of a movement to the effect that various anomalies in the official version of the space program for Apollo show that the program was faked, at least in some instances. My general view at the moment—having briefly checked out some of these arguments—is that, no, substantially the Apollo program facts did occur as officially represented and documented. Here is a reasonable Moon-hoax-counterargument site that does undercut many of the hoax advocates’ propositions: But it’s 10 years old, and I haven’t bothered to find newer sources.

Understanding that the globalista-federale Axis of Evil is fully willing and able to produce major fake events, I am suspending judgment on the moon hoax until I’ve had time to review legitimate hoaxists’ arguments and theories. My default position is that at least most of the moon landings and technology (key facts) to accomplish them were authentic. [Basically, to have produced a fake program of such scope, pervasiveness, and under vast public scrutiny, would have exceeded the capabilities of the American national security state apparatus by several orders of magnitude… at least to my knowledge.] I’ll let my readers know if I should change this default. —  bw Continue reading

Brian’s Column: The Blood of Patriots and Tyrants

Reflections on John Adams and Tax Day (2008)

Adams2And what country can preserve its liberties, if its rulers are not warned from time to time, that the people preserve the spirit of resistance? The remedy is to set them [the rulers] right as to the facts….  The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants.

—Thomas Jefferson

The full quote from Mr. Jefferson can be found in a number of places on the Web, but be advised as you fire up your browser: Homeland Security will probably be looking over your shoulder. Strange how far we’ve gone down Tyranny Road without so much as a peep from the general nonlibertarian population—perhaps such lack of resistance is explained by another Jeffersonian passage:

Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

Which, as we all know, is from the Declaration of Independence. Continue reading

Movie Review: You’ve Got Mail (1998)

Fine sister movie to Sleepless in Seattle __ 8/10

You've Got MailKathleen Kelly: [writing to “NY152”] People are always saying that change is a good thing. But all they’re really saying is that something you didn’t want to happen at all… has happened. My store is closing this week. I own a store, did I ever tell you that? It’s a lovely store, and in a week it’ll be something really depressing, like a Baby Gap. Soon, it’ll be just a memory. In fact, someone, some foolish person, will probably think it’s a tribute to this city, the way it keeps changing on you, the way you can never count on it, or something. I know because that’s the sort of thing I’m always saying. But the truth is… I’m heartbroken. I feel as if a part of me has died, and my mother has died all over again, and no one can ever make it right. Continue reading

Movie Review: Apollo 13 (1995)

Even though we know how it ends,
the film conveys a quintessential Randian theme:
“striving for the best within us”
Review by Brian Wright

No, Henry, those people don’t put one piece of equipment on my lawn.  If they have a problem with that they can take it up with my husband, he’ll be home… on Friday!
— Marilyn Lovell

Book by Jim Lovell and Jeffrey Kluger
Screenplay by William Broyles Jr. and Al Reinert
Directed by Ron Howard Continue reading