Tag Archives: Barry Pepper

The Kennedys: After Camelot

Six years after The Kennedys came this follow-up, which focuses on Jacqueline Kennedy’s (Katie Holmes) life after the murder of her husband, as she falls in love with Greek shipping tycoon Ari Onassis (Alexander Siddig); and Ted Kennedy (Matthew Perry), who’s battling his own demons and the burden of being part of a family where you … Continue reading The Kennedys: After Camelot

Saving Private Ryan: Spielberg’s Hymn to the Fallen

THE MISSION IS A MAN. Steven Spielberg has directed several masterpieces over the years, but this one is the most controversial. The general sentiment expressed by snobs is that the first 20 minutes, depicting the invasion of Normandy, are outstanding, but the rest is typical Spielberg mush. It’s as if the fact that those 20 … Continue reading Saving Private Ryan: Spielberg’s Hymn to the Fallen

The Lone Ranger

NEVER TAKE OFF THE MASK. Lawyer John Reid (Armie Hammer) arrives in Texas in 1869 and is immediately drawn into a hunt for an outlaw (William Fichtner) that ends in tragedy – and a new career for John. The Pirates of the Caribbean crew and star lie behind this blockbuster adaptation of the classic matinée … Continue reading The Lone Ranger

Broken City

PROOF CAN BE A POWERFUL WEAPON. Former NYC cop turned private eye Billy Taggart (Mark Wahlberg) is hired by Mayor Nicholas Hofstetler (Russell Crowe) to spy on his wife (Catherine Zeta-Jones); is she being unfaithful? As you might guess, there’s a lot more beneath the surface in the director’s first big picture without his brother … Continue reading Broken City

The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada

FOR JUSTICE. FOR LOYALTY. FOR FRIENDSHIP.  When Melquiades Estrada (Julio César Cedillo) is accidentally shot in Texas, his good friend Pete Perkins (Tommy Lee Jones) honors a vow and takes his body back to Mexico to bury him in a small town… but he also takes the man (Pepper) who killed him along for the … Continue reading The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada

Casino Jack

HONOR. INTEGRITY. PRINCIPLES. EVERYTHING IS NEGOTIABLE. In the mid-90s, slick Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff (Kevin Spacey) gets involved in the world of Indian tribal gaming, which is eventually what will bring him down. The same year as Alex Gibney made his documentary Casino Jack and the United States of Money, this equally flashy (but less … Continue reading Casino Jack

Seven Pounds

SEVEN NAMES. SEVEN STRANGERS. ONE SECRET. In his desperate attempt to help save seven people’s lives, Tim Thomas (Will Smith) pretends to be an IRS agent and gets to know a greeting card printer (Rosario Dawson) with a heart condition… Another drama from the Gabriele Muccino/Smith duo after The Pursuit of Happyness (2006), this time about guilt and its devastating … Continue reading Seven Pounds

True Grit: A Spielberg Moment

PUNISHMENT COMES ONE WAY OR ANOTHER. The original True Grit (1969) is a very good Western, well directed by Henry Hathaway, featuring a script by Marguerite Roberts and a part for John Wayne that finally rendered him an Oscar. Still, the Charles Portis novel that inspired the film is also highly regarded and when the Coen brothers … Continue reading True Grit: A Spielberg Moment

Flags of Our Fathers

A SINGLE SHOT CAN END THE WAR. The story about the U.S. soldiers who raised a flag on Iwo Jima after winning the 1945 battle for the island, and then were immortalized in a photograph that was taken of the event, gets a worthy treatment by director Clint Eastwood. He tells three different stories – … Continue reading Flags of Our Fathers

We Were Soldiers

FATHERS, BROTHERS, HUSBANDS & SONS. Another bloodsoaked war movie for Mel Gibson after Braveheart and The Patriot, this time set in 1965 at the beginning of the U.S. military campaign in Southeast Asia, which was to become the Vietnam War. The story is focused on Lt. Col. Hal Moore’s (Gibson) steadfast leadership and heroic efforts … Continue reading We Were Soldiers