“Geneva, even if the girl isn’t making up all this stuff, even if she’s in real danger, you can’t take the law into your hands.”UFOs, aliens, an empathetic dog, a crippled girl, and a host of supporting characters overcoming past traumas to reach out to others are all are combined by Dean Koontz in a book that is the most compelling statement I have ever seen made about the right to life, no matter what one's condition. As always with his novels, few things are what they seem.Two basic plots run parallel before their heroes find themselves coming together to fight off a very evil villain. "What is one door away from heaven," is a question that one character has asked another since her childhood. The answer, along with the overall theme of the book, is enough to make us all examine our lives more carefully ... and be thankful that Koontz's writing reflects his beliefs so honestly. Grade: ****
“There’s lots of law these days,” she interrupted, “but not much justice. Celebrities murder their wives and go free. A mother kills her children, and the news people on TV say she’s the victim and want you to send money to her lawyers. When everything’s upside down like this, what fool just sits back and thinks justice will prevail?”
This was a different woman from the one with whom he had been speaking a moment ago. Her green eyes were flinty now. Her sweet face hardened as he wouldn’t have thought possible.
“If Micky doesn’t do this,” she continued, “that sick b*****d will kill Leilani, and it’ll be as if she never existed, and no one but me and Micky will care what the world lost. You better believe it’ll be a loss, too, because this girl is the right stuff, she’s a shining soul. These days people make heroes out of actors, singers, power-mad politicians. How screwed up are things when that’s what hero has come to mean? I’d trade the whole self-important lot of ‘em for this girl. She’s got more steel in her spine and more true heart than a thousand of those so-called heroes. Have another cookie?
On the Waterfront
"Some people think the Crucifixion only took place on Calvary. Well, they better wise up!"No one in Hollywood today has the guts to write a priestly role like the one Karl Malden played. Also Marlon Brando give us a fantastic look at someone who was raised without very little moral guidance and now has to find his own way amid much conflicting advice. I got this from the library and then was cooling off on it until Tom and I read the description on the back which definitely put us in the mood to see it. I share it with you here:
Marlon Brando gives one of the screen's most electrifying performances as Best Actor in this 1954 Academy Award® winner for Best Film. Ex-fighter Terry Malloy (Brando) could have been a contender but now toils for boss Johnny Friendly on the gang-ridden waterfront. Terry is guilt-stricken however when he lures a rebellious worker to his death. But it takes the love of Edie Doyle, the dead man's sister, to show Terry how low he has fallen. When his crooked brother, Charley the Gent, is brutally murdered for refusing to kill him Terry battles to crush Friendly's underworld empire.I was glad that I had recently read Good News Film Reviews' tip about spotting crosses and crucifixes right before watching this. You wouldn't think so unless you keep an eye out but there is symbolism all over the place. Truly an excellent drama about redemption. Personally speaking, I'm not sure I'll want to watch it again but am glad I watched it overall. Grade - ***
"The poor dope. He always wanted a pool."This movie starts off watching a dead man floating in a pool, with a voice over from the man himself. You then hear this quote and you remember that Billy Wilder's dialogue crackles with verve and multiple layers of meaning. We then flash back to see the story of Joe who is an aspiring screenwriter but on the run from repo men when he dodges into a driveway to throw them off the track. He finds a dilapidated house from the 1920's and Gloria Swanson as the equally dilapidated former silent screen star who lives in the past and is planning her comeback. Joe finds himself lured into becoming her rewrite man and gigolo.
This is an unforgettable film that is a blistering expose of Hollywood which still holds true today. Interestingly many stars of the silent screen had parts in this to add authenticity and Cecil B. DeMille actually played a much more significant role than we would have thought ... and did so with surprising gentleness and charm. Grade: ****