Category Archives: Movies

Drones, drone pilots and other heroes protecting our freedoms

Hi readers.  Thanks for coming by for a read.

I’d been putting off giving Drones, the movie a try on Netflix because of the cover art.  Gave the appearance of one of those animated space war games I’ve found I don’t want to devote any minutes of my remaining life to see.  But it was on my ‘list’ anyway.  I kept scrolling past it and eventually decided to bring it up long enough to apply the ruthless scourge treatment.

Frankly, it wasn’t a good movie in most of the ways I’d normally measure movies.  But it did show that somewhere some other human beings are wondering about the moral and ethical issues related to killing off targets thousands of miles away using drones and drone technology.  I’d wondered a lot about the minds of the people making the decision to kill a host of obviously innocent bystanders and whether they were experiencing any karmic loading afterward.

Drones does explore the matter and a viewer is left with the impression someone among the directors, screenplay writers, producers, had personal experience with drone piloting and all it implies.  I find it encouraging that someone, though maybe not any of the parties actually involved in making choices to blow away babies, children, mothers, and people such as myself who happen to be in the wrong place at the right time, someone is thinking about what it means.

All the usual suspects have opinions about the flick and have said so on Netflix:

Once again the poster and disc art has nothing to do with the actual movie. The entire production is shot inside a “trailer” with a few external shots to show it was in the Nevada desert. This mess concerns the elimination of a suspected terrorist and a shave tail lieutenant that doesn’t want to fira Hellfire missile from the drone she and her pilot are operating. It is left wing mush focusing on collateral damage with a side trip to how EVIL the military command is. Save yourself the loss of 82 minutes and avoid this male bovine excrement.

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Wow. 1st, yes the audio sucks in parts, but there’s subtitles. 2nd, surely any high ranking officer would not disregard such flagrant refusal of orders. Oh, & then we have both military people (girl & guy—YES, women can be violent!) committing assault; One could argue this is an example of why women should not be in combat (drone pilots are more like ground soldiers than regular pilots).At least 1 other review was wrong, this is somewhat realistic, nothing corporate, all 100% military. I’m not in the military, but as I understand it, deliberate refusal of orders, (esp in a combat situation!) would result in being relieved of duty, & disciplinary action.As another says, Poster is BS, nothing to do with movie. Does bring up many moral questions, but so does war & killing in general; If they’re part of your own nation, killing even 1 civilian can make someone a terrorist, & a murderer. (and US military—-yes, I’m in US—has killed *THOUSANDS* of Iraqis, who were unarmed; How does that make Us (ie, USA) any better than them?3.5 stars for moral issues; 1 for technical; Much more realistic than most military movies, but if this is 100% realistic, it’s a sad commentary on our (US) military.I agree, needs better research.

 http://www.netflix.com/WiMovie/70296444?sod=search-autocomplete

Just following orders is an excuse that ceased to carry water on the losing side back shortly after WWII.  Evidently the makers of this movie believe, probably correctly, that military careersmen in an all-volunteer military damned well better just follow orders.  And, of course, the orders are coming from people who’ve weighed all the ethical and moral issues, made sound value judgements without regard to anything in their personal lives.  All the way up the ladder to the guy in the White House.

Reminded me that I saw on Yahoo News the other day a story about Bill Clinton remarking somewhere that, “I could have killed Osama Bin Laden.”  Seemed strange to me, brought up visions of him and some Arab duking it out with swords or dueling pistols.

I’m more inclined, however, to think he meant he could have killed him the way he murdered the Mount Pleasant men, women and children outside Waco, Texas, using puppets who were just following orders.  Heroes who were, at least, close enough to smell them burning and hear their screams.  Different sort of hero from the drone pilots.

Old Jules

The Last Summer of La Boyita – gender ambiguities

THE LAST SUMMER OF LA BOYITA – Trailer – Peccadillo streaming on Netflix

The Last Summer of La Boyita 2009NR 88 minutes On her summer vacation, young Jorgelina travels to the countryside, where she befriends a local ranch hand with an unusual secret. More Info Starring: Guadalupe Alonso, Nicolás Treise Director: Julia Solomonoff

The lush countryside of Argentina sets the tone for this tender tale of the summer when childhood is left behind. As school uniforms are sloughed off in favor of bathing suits, much more is revealed. Argentina , 2009 , 86 min. Screening Monday, June 21, 7:00 PM during the San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival.

A promising lad on a ranch in Argentina begins to experience monthly bleeding and growing boobs.  Mom takes him to the nearest physician, who examines, looks strangely at her, hands her a sheaf of typed reports of findings and recommendations to go to Buenos Aires for extensive testing by a specialist.

Mama goes home and the bleeding stops, so she puts the papers in a safe place and forgets it all.  Meanwhile the absentee doctor from somewhere else who owns the ranch comes back for the summer with his daughter.  The boygirl friendish ranch hand starts bleeding again and confides to the doctor’s daughter, who confides the secret to doctor/owner.

He examines the youngster and discovers he was misdiagnosed at birth as being a boy.  That he’s actually a budding female.

Naturally his father, the ranch manager, beats the holy hell out of him as soon as he learns of it because of the deception.

And so on.

An amusing and unusual movie.

Old Jules

 

The Mooring – Everyone dies. I hope this doesn’t spoil it for you.

Hi readers.  Watching Black Rock and finding it intriguing and thought provoking inspired me to watch a movie that seemed to rhyme with it.  A movie I’d normally have avoided.  The Mooring was right there where a person could watch it stream on Netflix.

The Mooring 2012 R 89 minutes  A group of teen girls gathered in the Idaho wilderness for a program to help them lose dependency on technology become victims of a murderous rampage. More Info Starring: Hallie Todd, Thomas Wilson Brown Director: Glenn Withrow

But all it managed was a lot of gratuitous violence, screaming hysterical females, lousy judgement, misplaced confidence, and grounds for paranoia for people who weren’t scared enough already.

Otherwise it was a pretty good movie.

Old Jules

Unsettling entertainment – Killing rapesters who’d been protecting our freedoms

Hi readers.  When a movie rattles the eye teeth enough to cause a person to think about it longer than a minute afterward, it’s probably rare.  If it causes thought for a duration longer than it took to watch it, even rarer.  Black Rock, streaming on Netflix, is one such movie and for unanticipated reasons.

Black Rock 2012 R 79 minutes, Three life-long-friend women’s vacation on a remote island turns into a nightmare.   Three guys 18 days home from Afghanistan and Dishonorable Discharges are chilling.  One of them is the younger brother of a childhood friend of the three.  More Info Starring: Katie Aselton, Lake Bell Director: Katie Aselton

So here’s a tiny island with three guys capable of being badasses when provoked, and three 30ish women, one of whom is horny enough to seduce-to-the-edge one of the badasses, then try to interrupt biology with the word, “No!”

Badass doesn’t think no means no, so she kills  him with a rock upside the head.

And thoroughly pisses off the other two previously only potential badasses who saw her saying too many yeses and not enough no when the whole thing could have been just a friendly interlude.

So the first potential badass is dead.  The girls have been beat around considerably before escaping to the woods.  Angry badasses 2 and 3 are stalking them with guns with the stated purpose of murdering them.  Shivering huddled together crying the seducer/coitus interrupter weeps, “Oh God!  This is all my fault!

No,” her friends assure her.  “It was just an accident.  You didn’t intend to kill him.  It wasn’t your fault.”

Well.  Um.  Lessee now.  Reality has an inconvenient way of trying to elbow into life sometimes.  Women have rightfully attacked the old “She was asking for it,” male predisposition when rape not involving racial issues was discussed.  It generally works in town and something called ‘date rape’ is frequently prosecuted.

But maybe there’s a larger issue here.  Maybe females owe it to themselves to recognize at some fundamental level there’s a such thing as angry, angry men who aren’t out looking for trouble, but who don’t need any female genitals rubbed up against them just to give a girl a thrill.

But hell, I liked these guys.  Jeeze, they were Dishonorably Discharged!  I’ve never known anyone who was Dishonorably Discharged I didn’t like fairly well.  Although my step-brother, Bobby Jack Nelson, did have some character flaws to recommend against him over the long haul.  I liked him anyway.

If any of you watch this movie I hope you’ll come back and comment on the post.  I’d like to hear whether you find the flick as thought provoking as I do.

Old Jules

Spoof on WWII – A Man Called Sarge – Heluva funny movie

Hi Readers.

This one’s worth the laughs.

You watched this on 7/17/14

A Man Called Sarge

1990PG-131hr 28m

You rated this movie: 4

This parody of WW II movies finds the overly zealous Sgt. Duke Roscoe leading his band of oddballs on a mission to blow up a vital German fuel dump.
Meanwhile, if you agree with me that we’ve been taking a lot of our presidents, particularly Franklin Delano Roosevelt, too seriously, you might enjoy this for a change.
Streaming on Netflix:  FDR: American Badass 2012R93 minutes, After contracting polio from a werewolf bite, FDR and a team of historic figures seek victory in World War II by defeating an army of Nazi werewolves. More Info

Starring: Barry Bostwick, Lin Shaye Director: Garrett Brawith

 

Palestine and Israel – Their Movies

Hi readers.  Here are some fairly watchable movies streaming on Netflix portraying how the people in the troubled land of Israel and the areas it occupies outside its established borders, and the people on both sides, would have you view them:
 
Omar 2013NR 98 minutes With his girlfriend, Nadia, living on the other side of an Israeli-built boundary wall, young Palestinian Omar regularly scales it to visit her. More Info  Starring: Adam Bakri, Samer Bisharat  Director: Hany Abu-Assad

 Tehilim  2007 NR 95 minutes .  When Eli Frankel gets into a minor car accident with his sons, he sends the older one to get help. But when the boy returns, his father is gone. More Info Starring:Michael Moshonov, Limor Goldstein Director:Raphaël Nadjari

Curfew 1994 NR 71 minutes .  This pointed drama portrays a day in the life of a Palestinian family — a day that quickly changes when the Israeli military imposes a local curfew. More Info Starring:Salim Dau, Na’ila Zayaad
Director:Rashid Masharawi

 A Bottle in the Gaza Sea 2011NR 99 minutes Newly arrived in Israel, a French teen struggling to understand the violence around her develops an unlikely connection with a young Palestinian man. More Info Starring: Agathe Bonitzer, Mahmud Shalaby Director: Thierry Binisti

Haifa 1996NR 72 minutes This social drama set in a Palestinian refugee camp portrays a broad cast of characters struggling to get by in uncertain times. More Info Starring: Mohammed Bakri, Ahmad Abu Sal’oum Director: Rashid Masharawi
 
Room 5142012NR91 minutesHeder 514 An investigator in the Israeli military is ordered to interrogate a senior officer who has been accused of abusing an Arab family. Cast: Asia Naifeld, Guy Kapulnik, Rafi Kalmar Genre: Dramas, Foreign Movies, Crime Dramas, Foreign Dramas This movie is: Provocative 
 
 Inch’Allah2012R101 minutes Political tensions take on personal overtones when a Canadian doctor living in Israel befriends a patient at a refugee camp in Palestine.
Cast: Evelyne Brochu, Sabrina Ouazani, Sivan Levy Genre: Dramas, Independent Movies, Social Issue  dramas independent Dramas This movie is: Gritty, Dark
 
Yossi 2012NR84 minutes While driving through a remote part of Israel, a closeted gay doctor crosses paths with a group of soldiers who inspire him to live life in the open. Cast: Ohad Knoller, Oz Zehavi, Lior Ashkenazi Genre: Dramas, Foreign Movies, Romantic Movies, Gay & Lesbian Movies This movie is: Understated, Romantic
 
 Off White Lies 2011NR89 minutesOrhim le-rega Thirteen-year-old Libi is sent to Israel to join her father, Shaul, a wiz at white lies. But it doesn’t take long for her to chafe at his lifestyle. Cast: Gur Bentvich, Elya Inbar, Tzahi Grad Genre: Dramas, Foreign Movies, Independent Movies, Foreign Dramas This movie is: Understated, Quirky
 
 Lost Embrace 2004NR96 minutesEl Abrazo Partido / Le Fils d’Elias A young Argentinean man yearns to understand why his father left shortly after his birth to fight a war in Israel — and why he never returned. Cast: Daniel Hendler, Adriana Aizemberg, Jorge D’Elia Genre: Dramas, Foreign Movies, Foreign Dramas, Latin American Movies This movie is: Understated
 
The Time That Remains 2011NR 109 minutes From Israel’s creation in 1948 through the early 21st century, a Palestinian family experiences triumphs and tragedies over the course of generations. More Info Starring: Ali Suliman, Elia Suleiman Director: Elia Suleiman
 
5 Broken Cameras 2011NR 94 minutes This Oscar-nominated documentary centers on Emad Burnat, a Palestinian farmer trying to make a living amid Israeli occupation. More Info Starring: Emad Burnat Directors: Emad Burnat, Guy Davidi
 
Probably a person shouldn’t form opinions based on movies.  At least not the ‘plots’ and characters of movies of a fictional nature.  But the background settings, the societies where the plots move, probably a person could allow opinions to sneak in as a consequence of those.
 
The background settings and society are more-or-less taken for granted by the movie makers usually.  They expect their audiences to already have intimate knowledge of them, to recognize immediately if they’re flawed or don’t depict something akin to reality.
 
In that sense I’d call these movies thoroughly worthy of the time spent viewing them, as a bonus you might say.  A bonus thrown in behind the plotting, the characters, the suspense, the button pushing.
 
Old Jules
 
 

After Porn Ends

after p;orn ends

Hi readers.  A recently released study reveals the NSA, FBI, CIA, Homeland Security and local law enforcement agencies in the US account for the viewing of one million porn movies every day.  The White House, Congress amd Congressional Oversight Committees, and various concerned federal agency employees account for another million viewings.

All of which defines the importance of the movie, AFTER PORN ENDS, now streaming on Netflix.  A movie bulging with US national security concerns, political concerns, legal concerns and psychological health concerns.

After Porn Ends , 2010NR 93 minutes, This documentary explores the careers of some of porn’s top stars and examines their adjustment to “normal” society after leaving adult entertainment. More Info, Starring: Mary Carey, Asia Carrera
Director: Bryce Wagoner
 
What ever became, you’ve probably asked yourself, of Asia Carrera, Tiffany Million, Mary Carey, Crissy Moran, Seka, Amber Lynn, Shelley Lubbing, Erica Lauren, Raylene, Nina Hartley, Houston, Tera Patrick, Jenna Jamison, Roxy, and Laura Palmer?  What about John Leslie and those guys?
Thanks to the NSA, the FBI and Homeland Security, After Porn Ends tells it all.  Official interviews with all the stars of yesteryear.
 
And mostly they’re doing okay.  They made a lot of money in that business back when government employees and law enforcement officials couldn’t watch it free.  But all agree it’s a profession, an industry that’s suffered and gone down in quality along with diminished opportunities for the current run of porn stars.
 
John Leslie summed it up best.  “It was good while it lasted.  I had approximately 3000 beautiful women in my life, only worked a few days a year and made a lot of money.  I can’t complain.”
 
Mostly none of them had any deep regrets about choosing porn over other possible professions they might have been qualified for.  “I couldn’t have been better at anything else, couldn’t have made as much money.  I’d have to weigh that against the downside, such as having a lot of sex, doing a LOT of drugs, partying a lot, and having more fun than people experience in other jobs.  Mostly I think I’d do it again.”
 
Old Jules