Letters to Hell - October, 1998


 - If You Don't Have Anything Nice to Say
 - Bears and Breasts
 - Explicit Details
 - Questions
 - Subtle Nuances
 - That Fish Can Act!
 - Dubious Wit

If You Don't Have Anything Nice to Say

[ From: Mason at AOL ]

> Re your tag:  "If you can't say something nice, at least have
> something to say."
> Funny, but Alice Longworth Roosevelt might have done a little
> better:  "If you don't have anything nice to say, come sit by
> me."

[ Heh. ]

Bears and Breasts

[ From: Dede in Carrboro ]

> Of course we have to see some "adult" films while the children
> are at ARMAGEDGGON, et al, but I *must* call to your attention
> the fact that the sadly miscast Elisabeth Shue BARES (not BEARS)
> her breasts. 

[ Grizzly error. ]

Explicit Details

[ From: Tal at Geocities ]

> I see you're pretty fond of http://movieguide.crosswalk.com, the
> Christian review site?  Well, try www.screenit.com... It's less
> about morals and more about explicit details!  

[ Wohoo! ]

[ From: Adam ]

> do u have any con air pics ,if so send em to me please 

[ From: Lapin ]

> Do you know where I could get a copy of the ALIENS director's
> cut?  I've been looking for a while, but can't find it anywhere.

[ From: Willis  ]

> Where exactly is the NC film festival?  And what is it??

[ From: Wil ]

> Is there any way that one can learn about subsequent appeals on
> behalf of the youths in PARADISE LOST?

[ From: Bruce in Cary ]

> So somebody's made a movie of Orwell's "Keep the Aspidistra
> Flying," entitled A MERRY WAR.  Does your infinite knowledge of
> things cinematic include any information on when/whether we'll 
> see it here?

[ From: Bob in Winston-Salem ]

> My name is Bob and your sister passes along your movie reviews to
> me.  I was wondering if you've seen YOUR FRIENDS AND NEIGHBORS?
> Living in the cultural void that is Winston Salem, such films come
> and go quickly, if they come at all.

[ Answers:

  o nope
  o try cdnow.com or cdworld.com
  o the NC Film Festival is in NC.  And it's a film festival.
  o see http://www.wm3.org/ 
  o don't know
  o see my movie site. ]

Subtle Nuances

[ From: S in Chicago ]

> Though I think you are dead wrong in your review, you could at
> least get the facts nailed down.  Joel Castleberg is *not* the
> director or writer; Noah Baubach is.  Perhaps since you over-
> looked this fact you may have also overlooked other subtle
> nuances.  A film that is able to combine foreground and back-
> ground dialogue without a cluttered soundtrack cannot be capable
> of poor sound quality as you suggest.

[ Sound mixing does not mean sound quality. ]

That Fish Can Act!

[ From: Beth in Cary  ]
> This is the best film I have seen in a long, long time.  Wow!  
> There were several classic scenes...  and some of the close-ups
> of "Puff" just had me on the floor.  (That fish can *act*!)  I
> laughed so hard, people must have thought I was having problems!

[ From: Perry at Netcom ]
> Don't forget to bring the Dramamine.  Brad Anderson must have wet
> his shorts when he saw BREAKING THE WAVES, because he uses the
> same hand-held camera shots and whip pans that tied my stomach in
> knots a couple of years ago.  Someone please slap directors who
> think they're making some sort of stylistic statement when they
> shoot films in this fashion.  It was useless in WONDERLAND and
> did nothing to prop up a movie that had a few cute moments but
> pretty much went nowhere.

[ I saw this one twice.  Lots of hand-held work, sure, but it's 
  nothing compared to BREAKING THE WAVES or, more recently, SAVING

Dubious Wit

[ From: Charles ] 

> There is an unfortunate tendency of film critics to speak with an
> air of omniscience on issues about which they know little or
> nothing.  Your commentary on WAG THE DOG is an excellent case in
> point.
> You apparenty have failed to notice the extent to which recent
> events with our current President have followed the sequence of
> events portrayed in the movie you so glibly dubbed as
> "stretched-too-thin situational comedy that this non-insider
> rarely found funny."
> You further describe it as the stuff of sleeping aids and sore
> backsides.  You were correct about one thing; you clearly are a
> "non-insider."  If all you truly saw in WAG THE DOG was satire
> and situational comedy, you sir have clearly chosen the wrong
> profession.
> You may do better in the future to reserve your dubious wit for
> matters in which you are much better schooled.

[ Phew!  I guess it's a good thing this isn't my chosen profession!

  Just watch for the guy with the sign "will write reviews for
  food...  Good night everybody! ]

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