“Forgotten Hollywood”- 21st Century 50 Fav Films (#22, #21)…

Posted on August 11, 2021 by raideoman1 | No Comments

Manny P. here…

“`It became inevitable that cinematic selections that landed on the list of my fifty favorite motion pictures over the past two decades might be considered underrated. My picks of the last few weeks that fall into the category include:  Molly’s Game, Woman in Gold, Truth, Cold War, Nightcrawler, Charlie Wilson’s War and Thirteen Days. My next two cherished movies under the critical analysis microscope are by any definition… underrated.


~ #22 – HELL OR HIGHT WATER (2016)

“`Hell or High Water is a neo-Western crime film that is part Tales of the Texas Rangers (a radio drama of the 1950s starring Joel McCrea) and part Bonnie and Clyde. Add in a little The Adventures of Robin Hood, as well.

“`Screenwriter Taylor Sheridan created a trilogy of the modern-day American frontier. Hell or High Water is the second installment. Jeff Bridges and Chris Pine provide the feel of Midwest authenticity and the production was rewarded with four Oscar nominations: Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor (Bridges), Best Original Screenplay, and Best Editing.

“`Hell or High Water  provides a complex narrative that dabbles with retail political uprisings of small-town America that is relevant today. Banks are the real villain and homeowners, small businesses, and law enforcement are forced to confront the struggle against the disintegration of rural communities. In other words, audiences root for perceived bad guys; lesser characters become collateral damage; and the flick bares re-watching for its cinematography, geographic poetry, and its innovative way to tell a well-worn story. Not bad for a simple heist thriller!


~ #21 – THE LADYKILLERS (2004)

“`Fargo, No Country For Old Men, The Big Lebowski, O Brother Where Art Thou?… All celebrated films made by Joel and Ethan Coen. The Ladykillers is the underrated production for several reasons.  Their screenplay was based on the celebrated 1955 British Ealing screen comedy of the same name that starred Sir Alec Guinness. The Coen Brothers admittedly draw their humor from a strain of lineage that stretches to the work of the iconic Preston Sturges.

“`The remake stars Tom Hanks (his third appearance on my list), J. K. Simmons (he has three spots on my countdown) and Marlon Wayans. Gospel music and a fragrance of life in the South is sprinkled throughout. Critics were not impressed and the work was bypassed during awards season.

“`A casino heist goes awry and the shenanigans that ensues leads to the tragic demise of all involved in the robbery.  Each of the characters are quirky in that Coen Brothers way, and be prepared for a satisfyingly weird conclusion. The only thing missing from this film is a cameo appearance by Joel Coen’s wife, Frances McDormand. I mean… Why not?

Until next time>                               “never forget”

This entry was posted on Wednesday, August 11th, 2021 at 11:01 pm and is filed under Blog by Manny Pacheco. You can follow any comments to this post through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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