Alan-Bates Movie Reviews


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VHS movie reviews for "Alan-Bates" sorted by average review score:

Prayer for the Dying
Released in VHS Tape by Anchor Bay Entertain (27 June, 1995)
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Director: Mike Hodges
Starring: Mickey Rourke, Bob Hoskins, and Alan Bates
Average review score:

Poor
Terrible, all around bad movie. Don't waste your time.

Not bad but could have been better.
A Prayer for the Dying was one of my favorite books of all time. So I was a little concerned about watching a movie adaptation of it. I mean, really...how many movies ever stand up well to the book? This one doesn't. However, on it's own it's an entertaining and interesting flick. Overall the plot follows the book well, taking an ex-IRA executioner from fugitive to murderer to hero. What this movie lacks is character development. With the exception of Fallon (Micky Rourke) all the people are shallow and one dimensional. The priest, Father de Costa (play ok by Bob Hoskins) never really seems the force he was in the book. You never know what drives him to try and save Fallon from this life of violence, when in the book it's de Costa's own past that mirrors Fallon. Alan Bates as the villan Meehan never really seems to get into the part. Where Meehan is dark, sinister, and VERY complex in the book here he's just there, with a little violence thrown in.

One of the best sub-plots of this movie, though, wasn't even in the book. Liam Neeson plays an IRA hit man on Fallon's trail. He is also Fallons best friend and the conflict between the two emotions are played up wonderfully, leading to a violent end. It adds a great suspense to the whole thing.

One other exceptional thing about this movie is the score. Bill Conti (of Rocky fame) really captures the mood throughout. Great music!

Overall, I liked this movie. Again, I would have like to see more character development of de Costa and Meehan, but still it's a great plot.

Prayer For The Dying
I think this is a great movie about a Guilt stricken IRA gunman. Based on a book this movie will make you laugh,cry,and excited.This is a must.


Prayer for the Dying
Released in VHS Tape by M.C.E.G./Virgin Visi (07 June, 1989)
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Director: Mike Hodges
Starring: Mickey Rourke, Bob Hoskins, and Alan Bates
Average review score:

Poor
Terrible, all around bad movie. Don't waste your time.

Not bad but could have been better.
A Prayer for the Dying was one of my favorite books of all time. So I was a little concerned about watching a movie adaptation of it. I mean, really...how many movies ever stand up well to the book? This one doesn't. However, on it's own it's an entertaining and interesting flick. Overall the plot follows the book well, taking an ex-IRA executioner from fugitive to murderer to hero. What this movie lacks is character development. With the exception of Fallon (Micky Rourke) all the people are shallow and one dimensional. The priest, Father de Costa (play ok by Bob Hoskins) never really seems the force he was in the book. You never know what drives him to try and save Fallon from this life of violence, when in the book it's de Costa's own past that mirrors Fallon. Alan Bates as the villan Meehan never really seems to get into the part. Where Meehan is dark, sinister, and VERY complex in the book here he's just there, with a little violence thrown in.

One of the best sub-plots of this movie, though, wasn't even in the book. Liam Neeson plays an IRA hit man on Fallon's trail. He is also Fallons best friend and the conflict between the two emotions are played up wonderfully, leading to a violent end. It adds a great suspense to the whole thing.

One other exceptional thing about this movie is the score. Bill Conti (of Rocky fame) really captures the mood throughout. Great music!

Overall, I liked this movie. Again, I would have like to see more character development of de Costa and Meehan, but still it's a great plot.

Prayer For The Dying
I think this is a great movie about a Guilt stricken IRA gunman. Based on a book this movie will make you laugh,cry,and excited.This is a must.


Prayer for the Dying (Amazon.com Exclusive)
Released in VHS Tape by MGM/UA Video (20 February, 2001)
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Director: Mike Hodges
Starring: Mickey Rourke, Bob Hoskins, and Alan Bates
Average review score:

Poor
Terrible, all around bad movie. Don't waste your time.

Not bad but could have been better.
A Prayer for the Dying was one of my favorite books of all time. So I was a little concerned about watching a movie adaptation of it. I mean, really...how many movies ever stand up well to the book? This one doesn't. However, on it's own it's an entertaining and interesting flick. Overall the plot follows the book well, taking an ex-IRA executioner from fugitive to murderer to hero. What this movie lacks is character development. With the exception of Fallon (Micky Rourke) all the people are shallow and one dimensional. The priest, Father de Costa (play ok by Bob Hoskins) never really seems the force he was in the book. You never know what drives him to try and save Fallon from this life of violence, when in the book it's de Costa's own past that mirrors Fallon. Alan Bates as the villan Meehan never really seems to get into the part. Where Meehan is dark, sinister, and VERY complex in the book here he's just there, with a little violence thrown in.

One of the best sub-plots of this movie, though, wasn't even in the book. Liam Neeson plays an IRA hit man on Fallon's trail. He is also Fallons best friend and the conflict between the two emotions are played up wonderfully, leading to a violent end. It adds a great suspense to the whole thing.

One other exceptional thing about this movie is the score. Bill Conti (of Rocky fame) really captures the mood throughout. Great music!

Overall, I liked this movie. Again, I would have like to see more character development of de Costa and Meehan, but still it's a great plot.

Prayer For The Dying
I think this is a great movie about a Guilt stricken IRA gunman. Based on a book this movie will make you laugh,cry,and excited.This is a must.


The Cherry Orchard
Released in VHS Tape by Kino International (25 February, 2003)
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Director: Michael Cacoyannis
Starring: Charlotte Rampling and Alan Bates
Average review score:

Hard to Like
If Woody Allen were to do another satire of Russian Lit (viz a viz Love and Death), he could do no better than to fashion it after this abysmal offering. I love Checkhov. I don't claim to have known him personally, but trust me, this is no Checkhov. I have no clue what the director was after: Comedy? Farce? Melodrama? Soap Opera? Well, he has followed several of those threads, but actual Checkhov? Nay, nay, I say.
To have assembled such a promising cast and to get such risible performances out of them must surely be some sort of achievemant in it's own right. I don't believe they give Oscars out for that, but they do give Harvard Lampoon Awards.
BEK

Chekhov's final masterpiece comes to life
Anton Chekhov's final play THE CHERRY ORCHARD (1903) comes to life in a wonderful film that truly exhibits the shear beauty that Chekhov imagined when penning this work. The film is well acted and the chemistry top knotch. It truly is a wonderful ensemble piece with excellent performances. The only trouble is it is a little lengthy and the screenplay fails to capture the intents of the original author at times. Nevertheless, it is well worth your time to drift away into the lives of some of the most interesting characters in turn of the century Russian theatre.

THE CHERRY ORCHARD FOR BEGINNERS
Maybe it helps to be unfamiliar with Chekov's work and therefore have no preconceived notions, but I found this British made drama to be absorbing and quietly powerful in depicting the sadness and futility of pre-revolution Russia. The story of a once wealthy family slowly accepting their loss of prestige and slendor blooms like a beautiful but lonely rose, and thankfully the depths of the drama never get very sloppy, sentimental, or even tragic.


In the Beginning
Released in VHS Tape by Artisan (Fox Video) (20 February, 2001)
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Director: Kevin Connor
From the people who created the made-for-TV special-effects extravaganzas Merlin and Arabian Nights comes In the Beginning, the story about the travels and travails of the tribe of Abraham (Martin Landau). Set around the year 2000 B.C., the narrative opens with "Genesis 12," wherein the Lord has kicked Abraham and company out of their country to a land of milk and honey to be named later. In order to keep up the morale of his followers while on the road, Abraham gives a sermon that sums up God's creation of the universe. By illustrating this sermon with stock footage and special-effects shots, the producers are obviously making a connection between sermons of old and popular entertainments of today. From there, the twists and turns of the Old Testament are treated like a soap opera. Family dramas take center stage, whether it's God testing Abraham by telling him to kill his son in sacrifice, Joseph (famous for his amazing Technicolor dream coat) gaining power in Egypt after being sold to slave traders by his brothers, or one of the many other stories of brothers fighting (Cain and Abel, Isaac and Ishmael, etc.). The events that have been visualized in movies before (the plagues, the parting of the Red Sea, to name but two) pale in comparison to their earlier incarnations, but the bigger picture is that In the Beginning works best as the Bible for beginners. --Andy Spletzer
Average review score:

Great Beginning...but...not so great after that...
I originally watched this miniseries when it aired on NBC in the fall of 2000. I specifically remember watching the first 2 hours and realizing I could find a better way to spend my time than sitting through the last two hours.

The performances are uniformly mediocre, with only Martin Landau standing out as Abraham. The scenes of creation, including Adam and Eve, as well as the Fall, are quite nicely told through flashback, as Abraham tells the story around a campfire. But, it quickly falls apart after that.

If you really want to watch the story of Joseph, Moses, and the rest, I recommend watching the animated films JOSEPH and PRINCE of EGYPT. If you want to watch a classic story of Moses, go with THE TEN COMMANDMENTS--it's a classic that still rates close to 5 stars!

What?
...What? How can someone base a biblical story on a movie? If a screen editor can't keep a Stephen King book true to the story how can we expect so much of the greatest work ever known to man. One of the first books we know of........the format of binding which our modern books are derived from. Come on people....movies are nice, but they are JUST movies. Look to Ted Turner......as far as biblical stories he remains the most accurate to date (within reason). I mean just read the bible............Moses didn't do all the stuff the movies said.......it was Aaron who did it all following Moses who was following God. Don't depend on hollywierd so much for the truth. For instance......Moses was slow of speaking..........didn't show that in any of the films except for the one on TNT........Moses was played by Ben Kingsly I believe. Point of fact people.....Charleton Heston Didn't even believe in God when he made The Ten Commandments (notice its not called Moses.....aimed at some reviewers). He didn't start his religious movement until later when he realized that the Ten Commandments would be his first and last great work other that Ben Hur...still closely a religious film (Planet of the Apes was a classic.....but could have been played by any actor)...and how much money people are willing to spend on easy religion. Good luck and God bless........the info is there if you can read and are willing to look for it.

Yeah! It's about time!
I was very impressed with In the Beginning. Are the others reviewers insane? The Prince of Egypt or The Ten Commandments are better films? The Prince of Egypt places the story of the Exodus to about 1220 B.C. and not 1446 B.C. and Heston's Egypt is about as antiseptic as a floor of an operating room. You could perform surgery on those palace floors. Landau and the others are great. At least the script writers read the book you know, you've heard of it, The Bible. In the Beginning is biblically accurate and outdoes the current Jesus films, the Noah's Ark fiasco and some of the TNT films. This gives me firm confidence that NBC has writers that are literate unlike the other networks.


Nijinsky
Released in VHS Tape by Paramount Studio (16 November, 1994)
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Director: Herbert Ross
Average review score:

Great dancing in an otherwise overblown soap opera
Considering the star power in this movie (Bates, DeLaPena, Irons, Badel, and directed by Herbert Ross) it misfires at just about every point. The life story of the great dancer Nijinsky has been put into a box of soapflakes and churned with a lot of soft water to produce an awful lot of suds, but nothing much actually comes out clean and bright and we are left with annoying residue. Ross seems to have fixated on the sexual relationship between Diaghilev and Nijinsky so much so that a much more balanced and fair story was abandoned to tittilating sensationalism. The film also gives us the impression that Nijinsky went crazy because of his inability to come to terms with his sexuality as well as his break with Diaghilev which are, psychologically, simply not true at all. Perhaps in today's world Nijinsky could be treated with Lithium or other potent drugs for bipolar abnormalities or schizophrenia, but to suggest that he went crazy because of a broken love affair is just plain silly. Unfortunately, all this whipped cream and soap flakes melodrama leaves the dancing very much in the lurch. What there is of it (the dancing) is wonderful and the film would have been MUCH better had Ross and company focused on that aspect rather than the bedroom nonsense we are for the most part already aware of (and so what?). George DeLaPena is a wonderful dancer and actor, or should I say a "dancing actor" and he is much underused in this movie in which he has the title role. Even Nijinsky's extraordinarily controversial ending of "The Afternoon of a Faun" is, by all historical reports, grossly overdone in this movie. The other ballets are given slight notice, even the brillant "Scherazade" with the beautiful original costumes and sets by Leon Bakst is given short shrift. On the plus side, Alan Bates gives a fine performance as Diaghilev (although he is working with a very poor script), and as I've said, George DeLaPena is wonderful as Nijinsky (again, crippled by a bad script). Perhaps one day someone will make a really good movie of these fascinating people. They deserve it, as all truly great theatrical geniuses do. As an aside, I've long thought that the impressario in the movie "The Red Shoes" (Lermontov, played by the brillant Anton Walbrook) was meant to be Diaghilev. Now, if you want to see a really GOOD movie about ballet and ballet dancers, check that one out ("The Red Shoes"), and Ross's "The Turning Point" is also a winner. Too bad "Nijinsky" is a turkey.

Well Worth A Viewing
Hard to believe that "Nijinsky" is now a twenty-two-year-old film; its look and performances are so fresh that it could be the latest from Ivory-Merchant.

The film focuses on the period 1912-1913, when Vaslav Nijinsky was both at his height as a choreographer, and at his lowest point personally. He was under the guidance and domination of impresario Sergei Diaghilev in his work and his love life, and he was also being pursued by ballet groupie Romola de Pulzsky, who eventually met and indeed married him.

The film is based on actual events, but viewers should be aware that the script takes minor liberties with historical time frames, character motivations, and events to advance its story. The production is mounted most handsomely, with the London Festival Ballet helping to recreate Nijinsky's most famous works. The ballet sequences are beautifully filmed, but many suffer from being cut very short. However, "L'Apres-midi d'un Faune" is presented at decent length, and there is an amazing, if too-brief, re-creation of the lost Nijinsky ballet "Jeux", done entirely from old photos and Valentine Gross's drawings of the original production.

The major performances are beautifully detailled; George de la Pena's Nijinsky is as winning and as troubled as we believe the actual man to have been. Alan Bates' Sergei Diaghilev is charming, ruthless, and ultimately defeated. Italian ballerina Carla Fracci plays Nijinsky's dancing partner Tamara Karsavina as tender, elegant, and nobody's fool- which is, according to Fracci enthusiasts, type-casting at its best. The one performance that is somewhat vague and unformed is Leslie Browne's as Romola; it may be that she or director Herbert Ross was trying to suggest that Romola was too immature to manage the torrents of emotion she unleashed between herself, Nijinsky, and Diaghilev. Alan Badel gives his final screen performance as Diaghilev's financial backer Baron de Guinzbourg; his plummy portrayal is one of the film's chief delights.

I've heard this movie described as disappointing by others, but I think the trouble stems from the history it portrays. The love triangle ends badly, with Nijinsky leaving lover Diaghilev to marry Romola, and subsequently descending into madness. This obviously is not satisfactory dramatic structure, but that's the way it happened, folks, and the movie begs, as it must, the unanswerable question of whether Nijinsky's marriage had anything to do with his illness.

For those who want to know what happened after this film's story ends, Romola stood by Nijinsky for the three decades of his schizophrenia, making certain that he had the funds and the care he needed. Shepherding someone through such an illness in Central Europe over the course of two world wars was certainly an act of the most extreme devotion. As Alan Bates' Diaghilev says to Romola at the end of the movie, "I suspect you are the best thing that could have happened to him."

Whether you agree or not, you won't regret the time spent watching this one.


My Dear Secretary
Released in VHS Tape by Englewood Entertainment (27 January, 1998)
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Director: Charles Martin (III)
Starring: Laraine Day and Kirk Douglas
Average review score:

Snapshot of a point in time
The film is worth watching for its portrait of a time long gone, but not interesting enough to watch twice. I expected a wittier film than I got, but enjoyed looking at the great costumes worn by Laraine Day. The problem is that the story is perfunctory and jerkily paced. Kirk Douglas is the weakest character. No way do you believe that Kirk Douglas has fallen in love with Loraine Day, or that the swift turnabouts in personality are credible. But Laraine glows and is fun to watch, and the supporting characters are interesting.


My Dear Secretary
Released in VHS Tape by Madacy Entertainment (14 April, 1998)
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Director: Charles Martin (III)
Starring: Laraine Day and Kirk Douglas
Average review score:

Snapshot of a point in time
The film is worth watching for its portrait of a time long gone, but not interesting enough to watch twice. I expected a wittier film than I got, but enjoyed looking at the great costumes worn by Laraine Day. The problem is that the story is perfunctory and jerkily paced. Kirk Douglas is the weakest character. No way do you believe that Kirk Douglas has fallen in love with Loraine Day, or that the swift turnabouts in personality are credible. But Laraine glows and is fun to watch, and the supporting characters are interesting.


My Dear Secretary
Released in VHS Tape by Celebrity Home Enter (01 January, 1987)
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Director: Charles Martin (III)
Starring: Laraine Day and Kirk Douglas
Average review score:

Snapshot of a point in time
The film is worth watching for its portrait of a time long gone, but not interesting enough to watch twice. I expected a wittier film than I got, but enjoyed looking at the great costumes worn by Laraine Day. The problem is that the story is perfunctory and jerkily paced. Kirk Douglas is the weakest character. No way do you believe that Kirk Douglas has fallen in love with Loraine Day, or that the swift turnabouts in personality are credible. But Laraine glows and is fun to watch, and the supporting characters are interesting.


The Wicked Lady
Released in VHS Tape by Warner Home Video (19 January, 1994)
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Director: Michael Winner
Average review score:

Good costumes, overacting, big stars getting a payday .
The highlight of this film is a fight scene between Marina Sirtis (Counselor Troi of Star Trek) and Faye Dunaway. Ms. Sirtis is topless throughout the scene. If you want to get the video for this reason then you will be happy. Otherwise forget it. Faye Dunaway puts in an acting performance, that if the movie was supposed to be funny, would be hilarious. Instead she just looks foolish. The costumes and scenery are quite lavish and besides Ms. Dunaway you will recognize the other actors. I think the producers were aiming high and probably spent a lot of money. The film just lacks umph.

Wicked acting! But a good story.
Faye (overacting) Dunaway stars as Lady Skelton...a rich woman who must have something that someone else has...Money, a woman's fiancee'. She later turns into a robber on horseback to gain more wealth & meets Jackson...another robber & falls in love with him. She later betrays him when she finds him in bed with another woman (Marina Sirtis) Highlight of the film is the catfight between Sirtis & Dunaway WITH WHIPS! (whoa!) I must add there's a lot of "naughty cheesecake" displayed with some "very interesting" bedroom scenes. (Hence the "R" rating.)

Brilliant Tony Banks soundtrack

The best thing about this film is the soundtrack, written by Tony Banks (Genesis). Otherwise it is a dated bawdy romp.


Related Subjects: Aaron-Eckhart
More Pages: Alan-Bates Page 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8