Tag Archives: William H. Macy

The Wind Rises

In 1920s Japan, young Jiro Horikoshi dreams of building planes and heads to an engineering school in Tokyo; his work will also take him to Nazi Germany… What was originally called Hayao Miyazaki’s last film before retiring is not for children, but an animated biography of the man who built the fighter planes that Japan … Continue reading The Wind Rises

Magnolia: Meet the Miserables

THINGS FALL DOWN. PEOPLE LOOK UP. AND WHEN IT RAINS, IT POURS.  After the success of Boogie Nights (1997), director Paul Thomas Anderson found himself in a very fortunate position and thought hard about how to take advantage. He started writing what was supposed to be a small and intimate movie, but it blossomed and … Continue reading Magnolia: Meet the Miserables

The Client

A DISTRICT ATTORNEY OUT FOR A CONVICTION. A NEW LAWYER OUT OF HER LEAGUE. A YOUNG BOY WHO KNEW TOO MUCH.  After witnessing a mob attorney’s suicide, and learning his secrets, 11-year-old Mark (Brad Renfro) finds himself in danger; attorney Reggie Love (Susan Sarandon) tries to protect him from the mob and the authorities. Joel … Continue reading The Client

Radio Days

One of Woody Allen’s most nostalgic features is a comedy-drama that takes us back to his childhood before and during World War II when radio was in the middle of its golden age. It’s a fictional story but filled with the music and impressions that were part of the director’s New York City upbringing. Some … Continue reading Radio Days

Room: The Challenge of Freedom

LOVE KNOWS NO BOUNDARIES. The same day I’m writing this review I read about a 38-year-old physician in Sweden who was sentenced to prison for having abducted a woman. His plan was to keep her captive as his sex slave for years in a bunker that he had built, but his scheme fell apart after … Continue reading Room: The Challenge of Freedom

The Lincoln Lawyer

L.A. attorney Mick Haller (Matthew McConaughey), who prefers to work out of a Lincoln, is hired to help a young Beverly Hills playboy (Ryan Phillippe) who stands accused of having beaten a prostitute. There haven’t been many screen adaptations of Michael Connelly’s books, but the success of this one may inspire others. The story, that introduces … Continue reading The Lincoln Lawyer

Fargo: A Game Changer for the Coens

A HOMESPUN MURDER STORY. It’s been said that William H. Macy fought hard for this film. Ethan and Joel Coen were not sure that he was the right guy to play Jerry Lundegaard, a loser who plans to have his wife kidnapped. But Macy knew better. As soon as he had read the script he … Continue reading Fargo: A Game Changer for the Coens

Thank You for Smoking

AMERICA IS LIVING IN SPIN. Tobacco industry lobbyist Nick Naylor (Aaron Eckhart) is faced with two challenges – coming up with a way to get modern consumers to spend more money on cigarettes, and getting to know his son (Cameron Bright) better. Ivan Reitman’s son Jason made his feature film debut with this impressive comedy, a … Continue reading Thank You for Smoking

Boogie Nights: Sex, Drugs and Disco

THE LIFE OF A DREAMER, THE DAYS OF A BUSINESS AND THE NIGHTS IN BETWEEN. The movie that looked like it might reenergize Burt Reynolds’s career (it didn’t really) is a fascinating look at the American porn industry in the late 1970s. Reynolds visited real porn sets in order to better understand the industry. He … Continue reading Boogie Nights: Sex, Drugs and Disco

Bobby

22 LIVES LINKED BY A MOMENT THE WORLD WOULD NEVER FORGET. It took Emilio Estevez many years to get this movie done, but eventually it turned into a talked-about event with a truly star-studded cast. The story follows 22 people who stay or work at the Ambassador Hotel in L.A. at the time when Robert … Continue reading Bobby

The Cooler

WHEN YOUR LIFE DEPENDS ON LOSING… THE LAST THING YOU NEED IS LADY LUCK. Bernie Lootz (William H. Macy), a depressing loner, makes a living bringing bad luck to lucky customers at a Las Vegas casino; when he falls in love with Natalie Belisario (Maria Bello), things change. I love the smooth opening credits, with glitzy … Continue reading The Cooler