An Overview of The Dirty Harry Series

If Sergio Leone’s Dollars trilogy made Clint Eastwood a star, it was the Dirty Harry films that made him a legend. After watching all five of these classics over the course of a week, I can safely say there isn’t a single bad or even mediocre entry in this series—all of them are great films in their own right, and each has its own unique set of pros and cons. So instead of talking about the series in summary, I’m going to give each movie the attention it deserves, one at a time. In doing so, I hope to do justice for one of the most entertaining and influential action series in the history of film.  Continue reading

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Sympathy for the Devil – A Clockwork Orange Character Analysis

Alex DeLarge from A Clockwork Orange is one of the most insidious characters ever put to page or screen. He’s may as well be the Devil in human form, an incarnation of primal evil. He spends his nights preying on the innocent with his derby-topped droogs, committing every crime from robbery to rape, and enjoying each and every minute of it. He’s one bad kid, to say the least. In spite of this, he’s also one of the most compelling protagonists in all of fiction. There are plenty of characters that we ‘love to hate’, but Alex is one of the few we ‘hate to love’.  Continue reading

The Deer Hunter: An Intimate Epic

I first learned of Michael Cimino’s The Deer Hunter while scouring YouTube for Quentin Tarantino interviews of all things. In one of these interviews, Tarantino was discussing Robert De Niro’s outstanding career throughout the 70’s and early 80’s, and his roles in such films as Mean Streets, The Godfather Part II, Taxi Driver, and Once Upon a Time in America. One of the films that happened to come up was The Deer Hunter, which he described as an “intimate epic”. Continue reading

Dog Day Afternoon Analysis

There’s a scene toward the end of Dog Day Afternoon where Sonny (Al Pacino) has just said his goodbyes to his lover Leon (Chris Sarandon) and his wife (Susan Peretz)  in two back-to-back phone calls. He’s visibly exhausted and coated in sweat from the summer heat (and with no A/C to boot). He’s sitting there quietly, when, just for a moment, we see him break down into tears, and then bury his face in his hands. There is absolutely no dialogue in this moment—Al Pacino’s facial expressions and body language do all of the talking. It’s an incredible piece of character acting, but it only works as well as it does because of the empathethic bond between the audience and the character of Sonny. Continue reading