Movies: Spirited Away, 3:10 To Yuma, The Good German

With it being a holiday weekend, it was also a Netflix weekend. We watched three movies this weekend. First up was the gorgeous Japanese film called “Spirited Away.” What an amazing movie. From Amazon:

On the way to their new home, Chihiro, a petulant adolescent, and her parents find what they think is a deserted amusement park. Her parents stuff themselves until they turn into pigs, and Chihiro discovers they’re trapped in a resort for traditional Japanese gods and spirits.

This is the highest grossing film of all time in Japan. And deservedly so. It is a spellbinding movie with great animation and an engaging story. The kids watched it with me and CootieGirl got scared and ran from the room when the parents turned into pigs, but once that was over she came back into the room and watched the rest of the movie and really enjoyed it – as did CootieBoy. If you haven’t seen it – RENT IT NOW. You won’t be disappointed.

4 1/2 jumping lanterns out of five.

The next movie was the original version of the western “3:10 to Yuma” starring Glenn Ford and Van Heflin. I saw the remake with Russell Crowe and Christian Bale a few weeks ago and decided to move the original movie to the top of my list to do a comparison. I liked the remake better. HOWEVER, Glenn Ford? HOT. His portrayal of Ben Wade was just as good as Russell Crowe and was the best thing about the original movie. Van Heflin was a poor casting choice to play Ford’s counterpart, Dan Evans – his acting was awkward and hackneyed up against Ford – whereas Christian Bale’s Dan Evans was taut and guarded in his responses to Ben Wade, which were perfect. I’m also happy that the remake took out all the stuff with Evans’ wife at the end of the original movie. That would have DESTROYED the remake’s much more exciting climax. Rent the remake – it’s better.

2 1/2 cowboy hats that make Glenn Ford look hot out of five.

Lastly, I watched Steven Soderburgh’s “The Good German” last night. Ugh – what a horrible, convoluted, boring movie, starring George Clooney, Cate Blanchett and Tobey Maguire. At the one hour mark I almost turned it off because it was so boring, but I stuck with it hoping it would get better. It didn’t. From

Who knows what American journalist Jake Geismer (George Clooney) expected to find in postwar Berlin? Peace maybe. Or at least a story. But certainly not Lena (Cate Blanchett) his beautiful embittered one-time love. And not the trail of secrecy and deception that leads from Lena to the scheming young corporal (Tobey Maguire) who’s her new lover…and to a murder no one seems interested in solving.

It was just bad and boring. Sure, the black/white cinematography was lovely and a nice tribute to old Hollywood, but that wasn’t enough to make the movie remotely interesting.

1 stolen wallet out of five.

My Signature

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  1. I totally agree with your assessment that Glenn Ford was hot. He was one of my favorite actors because he was equally adept in drama or comedy. Have you seen him in the original “Ransom?” Awesome. He was my pick to play the lead in “Winds of War instead of Robert Mitchum, althought RM did grow on me.

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