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Showing posts from January, 2014

Empire Magazine Greatest Movies List - #259: Groundhog Day

There are plenty of movies focused on a particular holiday, with Christmas notably hogging the spotlight, but who knew Groundhog Day would end up with an inspirational movie about life, love, and spirituality? Starring Bill Murray as an egotistical weatherman stuck in a time loop, Groundhog Day (1993) is a film that, just like its main character, you want to live again and again…and again. Screenwriter Danny Rubin and director Harold Ramis successfully create a fantastic situation in which a man must embrace the day because for him there is literally no tomorrow.
This is a movie better discovered over time, and I gradually discovered it when it would play on TV back when I was living in South America in the mind-90s. As a family it was very fun to watch Bill Murray go crazy and kidnap a groundhog, but much to my surprise I later learned my mom didn’t like the movie. She didn’t like the fact Murray kept repeating the same day, even though that is the whole point. You have to hang in th…

Empire Magazine Greatest Movies List - #264: American Graffiti

The name George Lucas is most often associated with Star Wars, which has become part of pop culture since the release of the first film in the franchise decades ago. Yet before the massive success of his beloved fantasy series he had already achieved a fair amount of success in the United States with his second directorial effort, American Graffiti (1973). Like many filmmakers who feel nostalgic about their childhood, Lucas set the movie during the era of his teenage years, the early 1960s. Today it is a period piece, but I imagine back in 1973 it was a great flashback for many audience members. Also of note, it features up-and-coming talents such as Ron Howard, Richard Dreyfuss, and a young man by the name of Harrison Ford.
Before watching the movie, I sort of read the book. Back in the mid-1990s when I was living in Peru one of my school assignments was to read a biography and talk about it in class. In the library I saw a book called Skywalking: The Life and Films of George Lucas. A…

Empire Magazine Greatest Movies List - #265: A.I Artificial Intelligence

A unique marriage between the styles of Steven Spielberg and Stanley Kubrick, A.I Artificial Intelligence (2001) is Pinocchio set in a dystopian future. Originally developed by Kubrick in the 1970s, it languished until 1995 when he handed it out to Spielberg who ended up directing the project after Kubrick’s death in 1999. The result is the engrossing story of a robotic child wandering a crumbling America as he tries to become a real boy.
The movie came out in 2001, the year of one of Kubrick’s most famous movie. That year was also one of the last I spent in Peru, as my family and I were living in South America because of my dad’s job. This was one of many movies I saw in English playing with Spanish subtitles and like many Steven Spielberg movies I saw it with one of my parents. Between E.T and Tintin, Spielberg has given families plenty of films to watch together. My mom loved it and of course rooted for the robot to have a happy ending, even if at the end of the day he is an artific…