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Contents Bulletin Scripting in shell and Perl Network troubleshooting History Humor

Films depicting female sociopaths

News The Techniques of a Female Sociopaths Female Sociopaths Recommended Links Stoicism Psychopaths in Movies The Hare Psychopathy Checklist
Machiavellians Manipulators Tricks Deception as an art form Sociopath attack methods Love bombing Projection Demeaning Bonfire of vanities
Dangerous Liaisons The Last Seduction Fatal Attraction The Devil Wears Prada Body Heat Basic Instinct The Proposal
Communication with Corporate Psychopaths Fighting Corporate Psychopaths Observing and Documenting Behavior of Corporate Psychopaths Projection   Humor Etc

Introduction

Female sociopathy is far more common than we like to think. The key problem with female sociopaths is that they unable to feel love or compassion, but can perfectly imitate them for their own, often evil, purposes.  Many people live next door to with female sociopaths, work in the adjacent cubicle, or, worse, report to them without ever realizing it until they're victimized or somehow exploited by these creatures. They thrive in the atmosphere of loneliness, disconnectedness, corporate outsourcing, and the commoditization of everything in the modern world, including love.

In such cases watching and analyzing films that depicts them often is very helpful, serving as a laboratory where you can repeatedly observe behavior of female sociopaths without personal danger. The variant of "pursuit of happiness" they demonstrate is "200% American" and includes the obtaining wealth by any means, as well as the satisfaction of primal, animal desires is a rich source of movies director inspiration. 

This is a kind of inexpensive, but somewhat useful therapy sessions.  You can watch a particular, interesting for you scene multiple times and get better in dealing with similar situations. Usually the first half of the movie is more valuable in this respect then the second.  As those are movies, the actors opposite to female sociopath usually do not demonstrate caution, and typically demonstrate exaggerated sexual drive (old  That's the negative side of such an learning path. Still despite all the shortcoming (and way too many "Right here, right now" type of  sex scenes ;-) 

I would recommend to watch them on PC with two monitors with the screen on the left streaming a movie and taking your notes and putting screenshots on the right screen in MS Word or some other editor.  Paper is also good for notes, but  you can't edit them afterwards, unless you convert them into some electronic format.

Among notable movies that might be useful to watch are:

In pages devoted to those movies I tried to list the scenes, that look to me somewhat educational. You can try to match a particular technique, or particular trait depicted in the scene. Of course the value of a particular scene is highly individual. So the scenes that I recommended are not necessary the best for all people. Your mileage may vary.

Dangerous Liaisons

A good starting point might be films based on one of the earliest depiction of a female sociopath in the literature: the early 18th-century French novel Les Liaisons dangereuses by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos, a French army general. It is one of the masterpieces  of the 18th century. It has inspired a large number of critical and analytic commentaries, plays, and films. The author was talented not only in writing novels. He was an inventor of a modern artillery shell with encasing

He thenceforth spent some time in ballistic studies, which led him to the invention of the modern artillery shell. In 1795 he requested of the Committee of Public Safety reintegration in the army, which was ignored. His attempts to obtain a diplomatic position and to found a bank were also unsuccessful. Eventually, Laclos met the young general and recent First Consul, Napoleon Bonaparte, and joined his party. On 16 January 1800 he was reinstated in the Army as Brigadier General in the Army of the Rhine, taking part in the Battle of Biberach.

Made commander-in-chief of Reserve Artillery in Italy (1803), Laclos died shortly afterward in the former convent of St. Francis of Assisi at Taranto, probably of dysentery and malaria. He was buried in the fort still bearing his name (Forte de Laclos) in the Isola di San Paolo near the city, built under his direction

There are several good films based on this novel. The brilliant of the plot is that shows how female sociopath can manipulate man to hurt other women in an intricate web of deceit, and still keep everything under control, like director of the film with actors on the scene, even without internet and instant messaging ;-)

The best is probably a 1988 historical drama film Dangerous Liaisons based upon Christopher Hampton's play Les liaisons dangereuses, which in turn was a theatrical adaptation of the novel. Dangerous Liaisons (1988), was directed by Stephen Frears and starring Glenn Close, John Malkovich, Michelle Pfeiffer and Uma Thurman (based on Hampton's play). This version uses 18th-century costumes and dazzling shots of the Île-de-France region around Paris. It was nominated for multiple Academy Awards including Best Picture ( Dangerous Liaisons - Wikipedia).  You can also watch Cruel Intentions (1999)  -- a notable attempt to transplant the story into the more modern environment of last century New York upper-class high school teens.

It is the story of the Marquise de Merteuil and the Vicomte de Valmont are two psychopathic characters, who are hell bent on dominating other people and use sex as a weapon to humiliate and degrade others, while sadistically enjoying and exchanging letters about their cruel games. It has been claimed to depict the decadence of the French aristocracy shortly before the French Revolution, thereby exposing the perversions of the so-called Ancien Régime. However, it has also been described as one of the first investigation of a female psychopath in literature.

Glenn Close created an unforgettable character of a female sociopath (Marquise de Merteuil), while John Malkovich created even more impressive and pretty sinister male sociopath character ( Vicomte de Valmont), who like often happens in real life is not devoid of some positive traits such as courage, ability act decisively and ability to forgive (in the final scene, when he is dying after being fatally wounded during a duel cleverly staged by Glenn Close character -- Marquise de Merteuil ).   Here you really see that a female psychopath approach to personal relations much like to a war of conquest.  It is all about domination and power.  There is no emotional attachment to anybody. Everybody is just a tool. We become slaves the moment we hand the keys to the definition of reality entirely over to someone else. And what female psychopath wants most is the power to define the boundaries of your behaviors, in this case sexual behaviour. In this film this is more visible in the behaviour of Vicomte de Valmont, who tried to "condition" the victims to his sexual preferences.  Often this is done via exploiting sexual attractiveness. Actually high sex drive can be viewed as more or less typical feature of a female sociopath. They are notoriously unreliable as marital partners and often display bizarre or deviant tastes of a sexual or erotic nature. They often suffer from some addition, like alcohol or, worse, cocaine.

There are multiple other films based on the same novel:

Television:

Besides Dangerous Liaisons   such classics as Vanity Fair (with Becky Sharp character),  The Last SeductionFatal Attraction  also deserve you attention.

In the 1993 book Girl, Interrupted and its 1999 film adaptation, the character of Lisa (played by Angelina Jolie in the film) is a rebellious, antisocial young woman who is diagnosed as a sociopath. However, it is left ambiguous whether that diagnosis is accurate.

Nurse Ratched - in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, was later described as a psychopath under later understandings of the term.

Please note that not all female psychopaths use sexual attractiveness and in office environment some are even routinely attack their female subordinates, who possess those traits.

Another classic of this genre is Poison Ivy

Bad girl category

Some movies, especially Bad girl category of movies (Wikipedia)  provide additional insights into techniques used and ways of exploiting sexual attractiveness (which for them is just a weapon like stiletto):

"Bad girl movies" are a subcategory, mostly of films noir, labeled by latter-day movie buffs to describe the dark films of the 1940s and 1950s starring provocatively beautiful women on the wrong side of the spirit and/or the letter of the law. The movie posters to these films usually featured sexy artwork of the actress, posed seductively. Currently, these images in original posters and reproductions are as valued as are the films themselves.

Among the classic "bad girl" performances are:

Others in the "bad girl" category have included: Gloria Grahame, Angela Lansbury, Dorothy Malone, Beverly Michaels, Jane Randolph, Claire Trevor and Shelley Winters.

Film noir category

One rich source of female sociopaths characters is so called "Film noir" movies category.

Film noir (/fɪlm nwɑːr/; French pronunciation: ​[film nwaʁ]) is a cinematic term used primarily to describe stylish Hollywood crime dramas, particularly such that emphasize cynical attitudes and sexual motivations. Hollywood's classical film noir period is generally regarded as extending from the early 1940s to the late 1950s. Film noir of this era is associated with a low-key black-and-white visual style that has roots in German Expressionist cinematography. Many of the prototypical stories and much of the attitude of classic noir derive from the hardboiled school of crime fiction that emerged in the United States during the Great Depression.

The term film noir, French for "black film" (literal) or "dark film" (closer meaning), first applied to Hollywood films by French critic Nino Frank in 1946, was unrecognized by most American film industry professionals of that era. Cinema historians and critics defined the category retrospectively. Before the notion was widely adopted in the 1970s, many of the classic films noirs were referred to as melodramas. Whether film noir qualifies as a distinct genre is a matter of ongoing debate among scholars.

Film noir encompasses a range of plots: the central figure may be a private eye (The Big Sleep), a plainclothes policeman (The Big Heat), an aging boxer (The Set-Up), a hapless grifter (Night and the City), a law-abiding citizen lured into a life of crime (Gun Crazy), or simply a victim of circumstance (D.O.A.). Although film noir was originally associated with American productions, films now so described have been made around the world. Many pictures released from the 1960s onward share attributes with film noir of the classical period, and often treat its conventions self-referentially. Some refer to such latter-day works as neo-noir. The clichés of film noir have inspired parody since the mid-1940s.

... ... ...

Crime, usually murder, is an element of almost all films noir; in addition to standard-issue greed, jealousy is frequently the criminal motivation. A crime investigation—by a private eye, a police detective (sometimes acting alone), or a concerned amateur—is the most prevalent, but far from dominant, basic plot. In other common plots the protagonists are implicated in heists or con games, or in murderous conspiracies often involving adulterous affairs. False suspicions and accusations of crime are frequent plot elements, as are betrayals and double-crosses. According to J. David Slocum, "protagonists assume the literal identities of dead men in nearly fifteen percent of all noir."[163] Amnesia is fairly epidemic—"noir's version of the common cold", in the words of film historian Lee Server.[164]

 Films noir tend to revolve around heroes who are more flawed and morally questionable than the norm, often fall guys of one sort or another. The characteristic protagonists of noir are described by many critics as "[166] in the words of Silver and Ward, "filled with [167] Certain archetypal characters appear in many films noir—hardboiled detectives, femme fatales, corrupt policemen, jealous husbands, intrepid claims adjusters, and down-and-out writers. Among characters of every stripe, cigarette smoking is rampant.[168] From historical commentators to neo-noir pictures to pop culture ephemera, the private eye and the femme fatale have been adopted as the quintessential film noir figures, though they do not appear in most films now regarded as classic noir. Of the twenty-five National Film Registry noirs, in only four does the star play a private eye: The Maltese Falcon, The Big Sleep, Out of the Past, and Kiss Me Deadly. Just four others readily qualify as detective stories: Laura, The Killers, The Naked City, and Touch of Evil.

Film noir is often associated with an urban setting, and a few cities—Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, and Chicago, in particular—are the location of many of the classic films. In the eyes of many critics, the city is presented in noir as a "labyrinth" or "maze".[169] Bars, lounges, nightclubs, and gambling dens are frequently the scene of action. The climaxes of a substantial number of films noir take place in visually complex, often industrial settings, such as refineries, factories, trainyards, power plants—most famously the explosive conclusion of White Heat, set at a chemical plant.[170] In the popular (and, frequently enough, critical) imagination, in noir it is always night and it always rains.[171]

A substantial trend within latter-day noir—dubbed "film soleil" by critic D. K. Holm—heads in precisely the opposite direction, with tales of deception, seduction, and corruption exploiting bright, sun-baked settings, stereotypically the desert or open water, to searing effect.

Significant predecessors from the classic and early post-classic eras include The Lady from Shanghai; the Robert Ryan vehicle Inferno (1953); the French adaptation of Patricia Highsmith's The Talented Mr. Ripley, Plein soleil (Purple Noon in the U.S., more accurately rendered elsewhere as Blazing Sun or Full Sun; 1960); and director Don Siegel's version of The Killers (1964). The tendency was at its peak during the late 1980s and 1990s, with films such as Dead Calm (1989), After Dark, My Sweet, The Hot Spot, Delusion (1991), Red Rock West and the television

 

Femme Fatale category

Another category of firms where you can find female sociopath characters are so   Femme fatale movies:

The femme fatale has carried on to the present day, in films such as Body Heat (1981) and Prizzi's Honor (1985) – both with Kathleen Turner, Blade Runner (1982) with Sean Young, Blue Velvet (1986) with Isabella Rossellini as the seductive torch singer Dorthy Vallens, Basic Instinct (1992) with Sharon Stone, Damage (1992) with Juliette Binoche, The Last Seduction (1994) with Linda Fiorentino, To Die For (1995) with Nicole Kidman, Lost Highway (1997) with Patricia Arquette, Devil in the Flesh (1998) and Jawbreaker (1999), both with Rose McGowan, Original Sin (2001) with Angelina Jolie, Femme Fatale (2002) with Rebecca Romijn, and Mini's First Time (2005) and Jennifer's Body (2009), both with Megan Fox. In 2013, Tania Raymonde played the title role in Jodi Arias: Dirty Little Secret. In 2014, Eva Green portrays a femme fatale character in Sin City: A Dame to Kill For.

Academy Award-winning actress Marion Cotillard has frequently played femmes fatale, in such films as A Private Affair (2002), A Very Long Engagement, The Black Box, Inception, Midnight in Paris, The Dark Knight Rises and Macbeth. Nicole Kidman has also played a few femmes fatales in films as To Die For, The Paperboy and Moulin Rouge!. In the Netflix TV series, Orange Is the New Black, actress Laura Prepon plays Alex Vause, a modern femme fatale, leading both men and women to their destruction.

Actress Theda Bara defined the word "Vamp" in the film A Fool There Was

One traditional view portrays the femme fatale as a sexual vampire; her charms leech the virility and independence of lovers, leaving them shells of themselves. Rudyard Kipling took inspiration from a vampire painted by Philip Burne-Jones, an image typical of the era in 1897, to write his poem "The Vampire". The poem inspired the 1913 eponymous film by Robert Vignola, sometimes cited as the first "vamp" movie. Like much of Kipling's verse it became very popular, and its refrain: "A fool there was...", describing a seduced man, became the title of the popular 1915 film A Fool There Was that made Theda Bara a star. The poem was used in the publicity for the film. On this account, in the American slang of the era the femme fatale was called a vamp, short for vampire.

From the American film-audience perspective, the femme fatale often appeared foreign, usually either of indeterminate Eastern European or Asian ancestry. She was the sexual counterpart to wholesome actresses such as Lillian Gish and Mary Pickford. Notable silent-cinema vamps included Theda Bara, Helen Gardner, Louise Glaum, Valeska Suratt, Musidora, Virginia Pearson, Olga Petrova, Rosemary Theby, Nita Naldi, Pola Negri, Estelle Taylor, Jetta Goudal, and, in early appearances, Myrna Loy.

During the film-noir era of the 1940s and 1950s, the femme fatale flourished in American cinema. Examples include Brigid O'Shaughnessy, portrayed by Mary Astor, who murders Sam Spade's partner in The Maltese Falcon (1941); Gene Tierney as Ellen Brent Harland in Leave Her to Heaven (1945), and the cabaret singer portrayed by Rita Hayworth in Gilda (1946), narcissistic wives who manipulate their husbands; Phyllis Dietrichson (Barbara Stanwyck) in Double Indemnity (1944), Ava Gardner in The Killers and Cora (Lana Turner) in The Postman Always Rings Twice, both based on novels by James M. Cain, manipulate men into killing their husbands. In the Hitchcock film The Paradine Case (1947), Alida Valli's character causes the deaths of two men and the near destruction of another. Another frequently cited example is the character Jane played by Lizabeth Scott in Too Late for Tears (1949); during her quest to keep some dirty money from its rightful recipient and her husband, she uses poison, lies, sexual teasing and a gun to keep men wrapped around her finger. Jane Greer remains notable as a murderous femme fatale using her wiles on Robert Mitchum in Out of the Past (1949). In Hitchcock's 1940 film and Daphne du Maurier's 1938 novel Rebecca, the eponymous femme fatale completely dominates the plot, even though she is already dead and we never see an image of her.

The femme fatale has carried on to the present day, in films such as Body Heat (1981) and Prizzi's Honor (1985) – both with Kathleen Turner, Blade Runner (1982) with Sean Young, Blue Velvet (1986) with Isabella Rossellini as the seductive torch singer Dorthy Vallens, Basic Instinct (1992) with Sharon Stone, Damage (1992) with Juliette Binoche, The Last Seduction (1994) with Linda Fiorentino, To Die For (1995) with Nicole Kidman, Lost Highway (1997) with Patricia Arquette, Devil in the Flesh (1998) and Jawbreaker (1999), both with Rose McGowan, Original Sin (2001) with Angelina Jolie, Femme Fatale (2002) with Rebecca Romijn, and Mini's First Time (2005) and Jennifer's Body (2009), both with Megan Fox. In 2013, Tania Raymonde played the title role in Jodi Arias: Dirty Little Secret. In 2014, Eva Green portrays a femme fatale character in Sin City: A Dame to Kill For.

Academy Award-winning actress Marion Cotillard has frequently played femmes fatale, in such films as A Private Affair (2002), A Very Long Engagement, The Black Box, Inception, Midnight in Paris, The Dark Knight Rises and Macbeth. Nicole Kidman has also played a few femmes fatales in films as To Die For, The Paperboy and Moulin Rouge!. In the Netflix TV series, Orange Is the New Black, actress Laura Prepon plays Alex Vause, a modern femme fatale, leading both men and women to their destruction.

Another list of femme fatale.

 


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Old News ;-)

[Jan 11, 2017] And All His Empty Promises

Notable quotes:
"... Double Indemnity ..."
"... The Baltimore Catechism ..."
"... Double Indemnity ..."
"... The Caine Mutiny ..."
"... Burlesque ..."
"... Double Indemnity ..."
"... The Ten Commandments, ..."
"... Double Indemnity ..."
"... American Legion Magazine ..."
"... The Ten Commandments ..."
Jan 11, 2017 | the-american-catholic.com
Thursday, January 5, AD 2017 Donald R. McClarey

(I first posted this in 2014. It is worthy of another posting.)

Back when I was a boy, I watched entirely too much television. Of course, who could blame me? Tempted by a luxuriant three, count them, three channels, albeit one of them fuzzy in bad weather, to choose from! However, I do not regret watching the Early Show on Channel 3. Back in those bygone days, many stations would run old movies from the thirties, forties and fifties, between 3:00 PM-5:00 PM. Thus I first experienced some of the classics of cinema, and one of my favorites was Double Indemnity , 1944, the first of the film noire genre. Adultery and murder were perhaps too mature topics for me in my initial pre-teen viewings, but I was fascinated by it because it seemed to be a playing out on screen of what I was learning at the time from The Baltimore Catechism : that sin will lead inevitably to destruction unless contrition and amendment are made. The film was fortunate to have at its center three masters of the craft of acting.

Fred MacMurray, born in Kankakee, Illinois, 37 miles from my abode, in 1907, was a good guy in real life and usually in reel life. A firm Catholic and staunch Republican, he tried to join the military after Pearl Harbor but a punctured ear drum kept him out of service. He adopted a total of four kids with his two wives: his first wife dying from cancer in 1953, and his second wife remaining his wife until his death. (Such fidelity was as rare in Hollywood then as it is now.) On screen MacMurray played to type and was almost always a good guy, but not always, and it is ironic that the two best performances of his career came when he played bad guys: weak, lustful and doomed Walter Neff in Double Indemnity and the scheming, cowardly Lieutenant Thomas Keefer in The Caine Mutiny .

Barbara Stanwyck had a Dickensian childhood from which she was lucky to emerge alive, her mother dying of a miscarriage and her father going off to work on the Panama Canal and never being heard from again. A series of foster homes followed, which Ruby Catherine Stevens, as Stanwyck was then named, constantly ran away from. Dropping out of school at 14 to begin working, she never looked back. Breaking into show business by becoming a dancer in the Ziegfield Follies at age 16, she was a star on broadway in the play Burlesque before she turned 20. Changing her name to Barbara Stanwyck, she broke into films immediately thereafter, displaying a flair for both drama and comedy, specializing in strong independent women. Her personal, as opposed to her professional, life was a mess. Married in 1928 to her Burlesque co-star Frank Fay, they adopted a son, Stanwyck having been rendered sterile by an abortion at 15. The marriage ended in divorce in 1935, Fay during the marriage often slapping Stanwyck around when he was drunk. Stanwyck got custody of their son. Stanwyck was a hovering and authoritarian mother, leading to a life long alienation from her son after he became an adult. Stanwyck married actor Robert Taylor in 1939, and, after numerous acts of infidelity on both sides, divorced in 1950. Ironically Stanwyck and Taylor did stay friends after their divorce, Stanwyck, who never remarried, referring to him as the true love of her life. In her politics Stanwyck was a staunch conservative Republican who supported the investigations of Congress into Communist infiltration into Hollywood. Remaining in demand as an actress almost until her death in 1990, she filled her last years with charitable work. Stanwyck was well equipped by her own tumultuous life to give depth to her portrayal of the murderous, scheming Phyllis Dietrichson in Double Indemnity .

Although remembered today chiefly for his gangster roles and his portrayal of the rat-like Dathan in The Ten Commandments, Edward G. Robinson was actually an actor with a very broad range of work: comedies, dramas, historical epics, you name it. By 1944 he was age 51 and realized that his days as a leading man were coming to a close. His half comedic role as the insurance claims adjuster Barton Keyes in Double Indemnity he viewed as a step in his transition to being a character actor. Always a liberal, Robinson was blacklisted in Hollywood due to his affiliation with Communist front groups. Robinson admitted as much by an article he wrote for the American Legion Magazine entitled "How the Reds Made a Sucker Out of Me". His comeback came when anti-Communist director Cecil B. DeMille, who thought that Robinson had been treated unfairly, cast him in the scene-stealing role of Dathan in The Ten Commandments .

[Oct 12, 2016] Compare Clinton accusing Trump with schene from Basic Instinct when Sharon Stone just after passing a lie detector test said to Nick in reference to his killing civilians while on cocaine: You see Nick … were both innocent.

Notable quotes:
"... I better like the reasoning in Basic Instinct when Sharon Stone just after passing a lie detector test said to Nick in reference to his killing civilians while on cocaine: "You see Nick … we're both innocent." ..."
Oct 12, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
timbers October 11, 2016 at 2:27 pm

The Trail

"The Case for a 'Two-Faced' Hillary Clinton" [The New Republic]. "In an election in which one of the nominees is promising he'll make great deals-that he'll deliver everything under the sun, without remotely explaining how any of it would be politically possible-there's something bold, even radical, in espousing such a practical philosophy for political deal-making. Maybe it's not a popular message in this populist moment, but it would have the virtue of being honest."

I better like the reasoning in Basic Instinct when Sharon Stone just after passing a lie detector test said to Nick in reference to his killing civilians while on cocaine: "You see Nick … we're both innocent."

Yikes:

"We therefore hold that the CFPB is unconstitutionally structured,' the court said" … PHH said the law creating the CFPB gave an unaccountable director too much authority."

Can we get this same judge to rule on the constitutionality of the AUMF, Patriot Act, or any case brought regarding NSA spyiny?

[Apr 13, 2016] Gone Girl

Starring Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler Perry Amazon Digital Services LLC
Gone Girl is best watched for two of its two and a half hours.
Notable quotes:
"... The dialogue is snappy and razor-sharp. The acting is awesome, from the main characters all the way down to minor roles. ..."
"... A movie about passion, lies, obsession, the death of love, and living with sociopaths, this is a remarkable movie. It also reinforces my belief that I never ever want to get married ..."
"... Ben Affleck, a capable actor and a fine director, knows what is to be caught in the media's unforgiving line of fire and has earned poor reviews in the past for exuding a certain bordering-on-self-parody, macho-man overconfidence and self-satisfaction, so he is an ideal choice to play the husband, an individual who is either a decent man in over his head or a chiseled sociopath who can barely hide his smile in front of the cameras. ..."
"... My favorite films of his are still Zodiac and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, but this plants its flag close to the top. ..."
"... Tyler Perry plays a jovial, smirky Johnny Cochran-type lawyer, who makes huge amounts of money defending men accused of killing their wives ..."
"... The Gone Girl screenplay had plot holes big enough to drive a truck through. In fairness, it was well acted and it started off well enough, shining a light on the deterioration of a marriage, how the media picks and chooses its heroes and villains for ratings, and just how easy it is to manipulate a public that thinks appearing on The Bachelor will lead to true romance. The send up of Nancy Grace and her ilk alone is worth sitting through. ..."
"... More than that, I perceive it as a condemnation of marriage, romantic relationships, and the (alleged) fakery of them. ..."
"... It is also a blatant commentary on sensational media and public hysteria/groupthink (I.e., "sheeple" and witch hunts). There is also a strange comment on parenting, if you compare nick's mother to his father and Amy's parents. ..."
"... There's another part of the movie, much smaller than what was advertised, which was why I wanted to see the movie in the first place. The role the media plays in these kind of situations. I was led to believe that it was an examination of the subject. It's not. ..."
"... Ben Affleck does a fantastic job playing Nick Dunne, a somewhat employed writer married to the no-so-right-in-the-head Amy (Rosalund Pike). The one thing Amy can do well is mess with your life. She messes with Nick's to the point the world believes Nick has killed her and he has to hire high profile attorney Tanner Bolt, played extremely well by Tyler Perry. ..."
"... Gone Girl is best watched for two of its two and a half hours. ..."
"... Great for 1.5 hours and the rest was trash. ..."
"... Gone Girl is brilliant, for 3/4 of the movie. The rest, of the story falls off the tracks and then struggles to reach the end...struggles, because it pushes the boundaries of weakness of Nick(Affleck). ..."
"... It sparks questions in you as you watch, as to just how well do you know your spouse? How well do they know you? ..."
"... It's a cast of talent with Ben Affleck Neil Patrick Harris, Carrie Coone, Rosamun Pike, Tyler Perry and others that highlights every angle of this demented story. ..."
"... There were parts that dragged on somewhat. The movie has a longer running time than most. ..."
"... Gone Girl is directed by the same man who brought you Fight Club, Social Network (the Facebook movie), and Se7en. ..."
"... In many instances, the film was making a statement (an unbiased one at that) on everything wrong with modern-day media, law enforcement, marriages, and the image of gender roles in society. Tough stuff! The only complaint I can make about the film is how it is not really all that cinematic and the film's uncertain ending. But then again, the ending can be seen both ways either as a metaphor about reality's way of saying no one is either good or bad or an attack on the senses with a strange turnaround for a particular character. ..."
Amazon.com
Paul Donovan TOP 1000 REVIEWER on October 12, 2014 Format: Amazon Video
A twisty and twisted new classic Nine Things About the Movie "Gone Girl" (USA, 2014)

1. One of the best movies of 2014, this multi-layered, wickedly brilliant film is a great adaptation of the 2012 novel.

2. It was directed by David Fincher. He collaborated with Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross again for the smoothly foreboding soundtrack. Fincher has developed a unique cinematic style, and this movie is a showcase of it.

3. The heart of the movie is a mystery - a wife disappears from her home on the morning of her anniversary. But not only do we not know who did it, we don't even really know what happened.

4. The movie flips back and forth between the husband's perspective and the wife's, slowly unfolding its secrets like a black, poisonous flower.

5. Besides the core mystery, the movie is also a commentary on media hype, along with trial by popularity. Nancy Grace probably wishes she could sue somebody for this movie.

6. Perhaps more chilling than the mystery is the depiction of what has to be the most dysfunctional marriage in cinematic history.

7. The movie is almost 3 hours long, but it doesn't feel like it. The plot is tight - no scene is wasted. The dialogue is snappy and razor-sharp. The acting is awesome, from the main characters all the way down to minor roles.

8. Part of the reason the movie works so well is that the author of the book, Gillian Flynn, also wrote the screenplay. It's set in Missouri and feels pretty authentic, probably because the author is from Kansas City.

9. A movie about passion, lies, obsession, the death of love, and living with sociopaths, this is a remarkable movie. It also reinforces my belief that I never ever want to get married. 23 Comments

CMM, December 10, 2014 Format: Blu-ray
Gone Girl is the Complete Package. Gone Girl took the world by storm. And I'm not just talking about the film. The book (I highly recommend this read) by Gillian Flynn quickly became one of the bestselling novels of 2012. Through word of mouth, people left and right were finding out about this tale of a dark and twisted marriage. It was seen almost everywhere, so I was no surprise that the rights would be snatched up (by Reese Witherspoon, nonetheless). And the stage was quickly set for David Fincher to work his dark directing magic.

The story tells of a married couple, Nick and Amy Dunne, on their fifth wedding anniversary. That morning, Amy mysteriously vanishes, leaving behind a rather suspicious trail of evidence.The authorities and the media quickly swoop down on Nick, who seems nice enough, but is oddly evasive and may not be telling the whole truth. As events unfold, you will be left wondering how well you truly know the person you love.

With jaw-dropping performances from Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Tyler Perry, Carrie Coon, Neil Patrick Harris, and Patrick Fugit, you will be in for a treat. These actors portray their respective roles with such power and perfection, and I was pleasantly surprised. I think you will be as well. I expect to see award nominations for these players within the coming weeks. If not, I will riot.

Not only is the acting fantastic, but the score paints a beautiful picture as well. Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross (who scored Fincher's last two films--The Social Network and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo) have returned to deliver an astounding and haunting score that perfectly suits the story. Equally peaceful and disturbing, it mirrors the characters' behaviours as their secrets are unveiled.

Gone Girl is the complete package. Creepy, witty, breathtaking, you will finish this movie with your jaw open. I guarantee it. Truly beautiful, Fincher has outdone himself. I recommend purchasing this at your earliest opportunity.

D. H., October 4, 2014 Format: Amazon Video

I have not read the Gillian Flynn novel Gone Girl. Not out of any particular aversion. I just never found my way around to it. So I entered this film adaptation by premiere stylist and suspense conjurer David Fincher quote-unquote blind beyond a general knowledge of the story involving a suburban Missouri man who becomes a suspect in his wife's mysterious vanishing. And beat by beat, scene by scene, twist by twist, the film blew me away. It is an airtight and atmospheric blend of the hilarious, the macabre, and the romantic. It satisfies first as a crime mystery. With a perverse, yet playful hand, it transforms the essential and inevitable questions of the genre (who is who? who is where? who has done what? who is alive? who is dead?) into delightful webs of opaque morality and disturbing brutality. There are other concerns and components, too, and this joins such films as Sweet Smell of Success and To Die For among the best indictments of media sensationalism and the way it can bastardize humanity. It achieves this via acidic and vivid (and therefore highly enjoyable) illustration of its points rather than didactic condemnation.

The film is buoyed by spot-on casting decisions. In a strange way which pays enormous dividends, many of the stars seem to be chosen based on their undesirable traits. Ben Affleck, a capable actor and a fine director, knows what is to be caught in the media's unforgiving line of fire and has earned poor reviews in the past for exuding a certain bordering-on-self-parody, macho-man overconfidence and self-satisfaction, so he is an ideal choice to play the husband, an individual who is either a decent man in over his head or a chiseled sociopath who can barely hide his smile in front of the cameras.

And the beautiful Rosamund Pike can seem distant on screen, a type of icy English rose to be admired and never touched, and she is therefore ideal as a so-picture-perfect-as-to-be-unknowable wife pushed to unusual and dangerous places. Hers is a particularly alarming and inspired turn (the actress' best since the undervalued Barney's Version), and it would be a shame if she were not recognized by the Academy with her first nomination early next year.

This line of casting thought extends to other plays in the substantial ensemble. Why not, for example, hire Tyler Perry, who has turned himself in a household name with outsize charisma and a self-forged aura of spiritual authority, to play a showboating A-list lawyer? Throughout Gone Girl, the roles fit so very snugly.

And behind the camera, Fincher is in as fine a form as ever. My favorite films of his are still Zodiac and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, but this plants its flag close to the top. His antiseptic, meticulous, and perfectionist shot compositions turn the banal suburban environments into under-lit and malevolence-infused spaces, and every scene (whether overtly suspenseful and violent or of a quieter domestic variety) has an incisive and taut quality. This is a long film at 148 minutes, but never an overweight or ponderous one. It holds viewers' heads and hearts with vice-grip intensity from frame one onward and leaves us (or me, at least) at once amused, energized, and despairing.

David R. Eastwood, March 29, 2015 Format: DVD

THOROUGHLY NASTY, REPULSIVE, & SMARMY ... BUT WITH A VERY CUTE LITTLE ORANGE KITTY

The plot of David Fincher's film GONE GIRL (2014) is one more variation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's old Sherlock Holmes story "The Problem of Thor Bridge." One among many ... and perhaps the nastiest.

As all the blurbs reveal, Ben Affleck plays a husband named Nick Dunne, who is suspected of killing his wife Amy, played by Rosamund Pike, when she mysteriously disappears under highly suspicious circumstances.

Although the cast is uniformly talented, nearly all of the characters are unlikeable ... and several of them are downright repulsive. Tyler Perry plays a jovial, smirky Johnny Cochran-type lawyer, who makes huge amounts of money defending men accused of killing their wives

... the shark-like, frenzied TV scandal-mongers are totally disgusting ... and the couple who are the parents of Amy (the missing wife) are blood-sucking horrors who have used their daughter for their own financial benefit for years.

Only two of the main characters are "normal" and basically "neutral" in their presentation: Margo Dunne, the sister of Ben Affleck's character, played by Carrie Coon, and Rhonda Boney (!?), the female detective who is in charge of the investigation, played by Kim Dickens. The only wholly likeable character is the little orange cat of Nick and Amy, which only has about 5 minutes of on-screen time.

The solution to Amy Dunne's disappearance gradually comes to light over the next TWO AND A HALF HOURS, and without giving any spoilers here, I will assert that it is a repulsive conclusion to the film.

I viewed the film with a small group of adults (approximately 55 people), and especially during the final 45 minutes some parts of the film caused nearly the whole audience to laugh at the preposterous events and new revelations. The scenes with Neil Patrick Harris seemed to get the highest number of unintended laughs.

In my judgment, this film is quite smarmy and a huge waste of one's time. Not even the sweetness of the little orange cat can compensate for the general nastiness of the characters and their actions.

KTFaye, February 14, 2015 Format: Amazon Video

Like the marriage in the movie, it starts well, then completely falls apart

The Gone Girl screenplay had plot holes big enough to drive a truck through. In fairness, it was well acted and it started off well enough, shining a light on the deterioration of a marriage, how the media picks and chooses its heroes and villains for ratings, and just how easy it is to manipulate a public that thinks appearing on The Bachelor will lead to true romance. The send up of Nancy Grace and her ilk alone is worth sitting through.

But then it all falls apart. I won't spoil it for those who haven't yet seen it, but the complete unraveling of film after the "twist" actually became laughable with such huge gaps in common sense, implausible occurrences, security camera footage that not a single cop decided to look at, and just plain linear storytelling of getting from A to B that it's actually boggling. It wasn't the twist itself, that was actually pretty clever, it was all the lapses that came after.

Even in a work of fiction there logic rules that need to be followed, and therein lies my issue with Gone Girl. It's difficult to elaborate on everything that's wrong with the last third without revealing what happens after the so-called big twist. (Just google Gone Girl plot holes and you'll find plenty of examples). But the film ends with an eye roll instead of a bang. There's suspending disbelief, which I'm happy to do if there is other convincing evidence, and then there's beating disbelief to death with a tire iron--which is what Gone Girl gives you in the end.

I understand that Gillian Flynn translated her book to screen and reworked the whole last third, which is exactly where it all falls apart. Perhaps being a staff writer at Entertainment Weekly for 20 years -- where the emphasis is clearly on get it out fast rather than get it out right -- dulled her logic and skills! Either way, while some Oscar snubs are occasionally puzzling, I'm not in the least surprised that there were none for this screenplay.

Ripley7700 on March 5, 2015 Format: Amazon Video | Verified Purchase

Split on this one...

At the end of this movie, I found myself very confused. Not about the mystery but whether I liked the movie. It wasn't because the characters were so complex or multi-layered that they pushed my perceptions of "good" and "evil." In fact, I found Amy and Nick strangely two-dimensional.

I was so mystified by my mystification that I did a first: I read a bunch of professional reviews to see if that would help me put my finger on it. I was further surprised to see a common theme among them: is this movie misogynist, misandrist, or misanthropic? If it is any of these, I think it is the latter.

More than that, I perceive it as a condemnation of marriage, romantic relationships, and the (alleged) fakery of them. In that vein, I found it spiteful rather than satiric. It is also a blatant commentary on sensational media and public hysteria/groupthink (I.e., "sheeple" and witch hunts). There is also a strange comment on parenting, if you compare nick's mother to his father and Amy's parents. That one was a bit lost on me, and perphaps it is clearer in the book where there is more detail on that (note: I haven't read the book).

At this point, I'm still baffled by my reaction to this movie, and the best way I can rationalize it is that I think this is a solid suspense/murder mystery but I didn't buy the "psychological" part of this psychological thriller.

That part seemed forced to the point that it detracted from the good things. I admit that I liked Basic Instinct more (maybe I'm just getting old and need to rewatch that one).

Some positives: I thought the casting was superb and the directing was also very strong. I thought the actress who played the twin sister was particularly good. On a final note, I found the end rather abrupt. Don't know if this will help people who haven't watched it yet, but maybe this will help validate other viewers who wish they could have "cracked open" their own skulls at the end of this movie.

Buddhasmom, March 4, 2015 Format: Amazon Video | Verified Purchase

Don't see it alone

This movie isn't anything you'd expect. I think that's why my review is mixed. I liked that it was not what you expected, I guess. I think I was irritated at the female character. All of them really, but the wife really annoyed me. It was kind of sick and really twisted. I kept saying to myself, "okay well lets appreciate it for what it is and keep an open mind." That was really difficult. This isn't an easy movie for me to pin down for you. Especially because I don't want to give anything away and to really give you a mental picture, I almost have to give stuff away. I'm going to try to stretch my creative muscle here, though, and give you some kind of perspective.

One half of the picture is the hero and he screws up bad, but the punishment is horrific compared to the crime. I'm not crazy about those type of movies. The kind of movie where the hero just keeps getting hit with new bad stuff. Too much like my life, I guess.

The other half of the movie is a revenge thriller. You want to get behind it, because you kind of think, "well, they deserve it.' But it's not that cut and dry. You want to get behind it but it's hard because the way the revenge is executed is so sick and twisted and over-the-top. It comes so close to the edge of being completely unbelievable and so sick that the sympathy you once held is lost completely. But a part of you still wants the revenge taker to succeed and wants to be on their side, moreover, there are a lot of folks out there that didn't lose their sympathy at all, which says a lot about society in general and ones friends in particular.

There's another part of the movie, much smaller than what was advertised, which was why I wanted to see the movie in the first place. The role the media plays in these kind of situations. I was led to believe that it was an examination of the subject. It's not.

So look, I don't know that I would recommend renting it 100%. I am very much on the fence about this movie. I'm sorry. I would suggest watching it with a bunch of your friends. It's one of those movies that you go to with those friends who like to talk about movies. You'll have so much to talk about so you don't want to see it all alone.

CJs Pirate, December 7, 2015 Format: Amazon Video

Gone Girl is Best Watched for Two of its Two and a Half Hours

Wanna watch a great movie? Quit this one 2/3rds of the way through. Wanna watch something turn from very good to stupid? Watch this all the way.

Ben Affleck does a fantastic job playing Nick Dunne, a somewhat employed writer married to the no-so-right-in-the-head Amy (Rosalund Pike). The one thing Amy can do well is mess with your life. She messes with Nick's to the point the world believes Nick has killed her and he has to hire high profile attorney Tanner Bolt, played extremely well by Tyler Perry.

The acting is quite good, with the exception of Neil Patrick Harris, who just seemed miscast as Amy's high school friend Desi Collins to whom she turns for "help". Here's the part where everything turns weird. Shortly after her time with Desi is the best time to stop the movie and enjoy what had been made. Any further, and I'm not spoiling anything here, the movie hits a wall.

Gone Girl is best watched for two of its two and a half hours.

SpaxyDaxy, January 28, 2015 Format: Amazon Video | Verified Purchase

Rosamund Pike carries it...

I really like David Fincher movies. They always have a lot of action, a little suspense, and a sense of humor. And this one is no different. I was confused by some parts of the movie, and displease with other parts, mainly the ending. It was a book before it was a movie, so that's no ones fault who were involved in the production of the movie. But I can see how in a novel the ending would've been handled in a better way. In a novel there's more character development, so you get to see the motivation behind each decision that a character makes. Any movie you only really see what the director wants you to see, and what the actors are capable of portraying. Ben Affleck was out of his league with that powerhouse of a actress Rosamund Pike. If she doesn't get at least a nomination, the whole system is flawed. Had the movie been handled with a bit more care, it probably would have been one of the greatest movies I've ever seen... that's saying a lot because I really don't like Ben Affleck and he's on screen 80% of the movie. He does add a snarky lightness that's needed in such a heavy movie. It's a solid 3.5 stars. Definitely must see for originality.

Amazon Customer, March 6, 2015 Format: Amazon Video | Verified Purchase

Great for 1.5 hours and the rest was trash.

Ok you want an honest review. Here goes. Well acted, excellent plot...up to a point, then it falls apart. The twists no longer are logical, they are just dark and twisted, taking you on a journey that has lost its way, but determined to land you at the end, an end already prepared. So it gets there, but by the time you get there, you wonder, what happened? That's because you are waiting for it to take a right, on to the road of plausibility. Gone Girl is brilliant, for 3/4 of the movie. The rest, of the story falls off the tracks and then struggles to reach the end...struggles, because it pushes the boundaries of weakness of Nick(Affleck).

So my rating is 3 stars. I walk away feeling like I wasted the last 45 mins on junk. Prior to that, it was fascinating. The high rating is what's wrong with people today...everyone runs in packs and no one, no one dares to be honest, less they are an outcast. Go see it for yourself and then dare to put an honest review here.

TeaRose, March 9, 2015 Format: Amazon Video | Verified Purchase

Review form Book Reader

As someone who has read the book prior to seeing this film, I may have a slightly different take on the movie then others. I found it difficult to decide how many stars it deserved. The first act and most of the second act are well edited from the book. The changes that are made make sense in order to condense a complicated story into a film. But somewhere in 2nd and totally the 3rd act the motivations for the characters gets muddled. The book spends a lot of time letting you read what Nick and Amy are thinking. The movie. though it tries at first, seems to give up on that element. But it is a crucial element in understanding the ending at the very least. Nick is self-centered and deeply flawed in the book. Amy is, a sociopath. The depth of her manipulation, cruelty and insane notion of punishment and justice is not explored near enough in the film. Her crazy and expert manipulation is intense in the book. Nick never really worries what happened to her when she vanishes and hates her. I wish the movie was able to flesh out more of these massive personality flaws. Without this the movie in the end falls flat. However, I don't have a good idea as to how the movie might have done this given the time restrictions.

Julee M on May 16, 2015 Format: Amazon Video | Verified Purchase

Intense, Dark, Cast of Talent...Must See

My husband and I heard so much about this movie. I am very fond of true crime and we both like drama movies. We gave it a go.

It is dark. It is twisted.

A marriage of hope, happiness and on the fifth wedding anniversary it all vanishes. Hope, sorrow, and mystery. Amy Dunne is missing the trail of evidence leads to suspicions of her husband Nick Dunne.

It sparks questions in you as you watch, as to just how well do you know your spouse? How well do they know you?

It's a cast of talent with Ben Affleck Neil Patrick Harris, Carrie Coone, Rosamun Pike, Tyler Perry and others that highlights every angle of this demented story.

There were parts that dragged on somewhat. The movie has a longer running time than most. My husband wasn't impressed--until the ending. I was sitting on the edge of my seat the entire time saying, "you've got to be kidding!"....it was intense. it was well executed. It was dark. It was great!

Visual Bureau, October 24, 2014 Format: Amazon Video

Although feels like a TV movie, its performances, look into media and the law, and unbiased analysis on a marriage is sharp!

"Did he or not kill his wife? Is this all a set-up? More questions can be unraveled in one of the most surprisingly complex yet straightforward mystery-thrillers of the year. Bear in mind, I was never anticipating to see this film just by chance after some friends brought me.

Gone Girl is directed by the same man who brought you Fight Club, Social Network (the Facebook movie), and Se7en. A purveyor for dark, brooding films, Gone Girl is no stranger to this with a knack for complexity and disturbing emotions channeling through the central performances by Ben Affleck (whose career escalated to much more respectable degrees after State of Play and Argo) and Rosamund Pike (an up-and-coming British actress) playing two conflicted souls frustrated over their relationship only to then, days on end, leave a field of investigation and suspicion into the lives of Affleck's character whether he or not had any part into the disappearance of his wife?

While the premise sounds absurdly ordinary and entirely like something from Lifetime but unlike some of Lifetime's corny products, this film feels more uncertain and depressing in tone and is more graphic in content. However, any comparisons to Lifetime can be set aside with the film's surprisingly self-aware nature and persistent dark humour, which albeit odd for a film of this calibre, works in some ways to break the tension and melodrama.

Using Neil Patrick Harris from "How I Met Your Mother", the model from the Robin Thicke "Blurred Lines" music video, and Tyler Perry from the "Madea" films maybe the most bizarre choices for a high-stakes drama but it works in a surreal way.

In many instances, the film was making a statement (an unbiased one at that) on everything wrong with modern-day media, law enforcement, marriages, and the image of gender roles in society. Tough stuff! The only complaint I can make about the film is how it is not really all that cinematic and the film's uncertain ending. But then again, the ending can be seen both ways either as a metaphor about reality's way of saying no one is either good or bad or an attack on the senses with a strange turnaround for a particular character.

Without giving much away, Gone Girl is aimed at the more ambitious viewer and for anyone who likes their Lifetime or Investigation Discovery TV shows with a bit more class, acting skill, and raw spirit. It sure knows how to be pessimistic and insightful without remorse. And the message is relevant and important too with a nice look into how marriage and relationships just aren't a realistic goal in today's society which I wholeheartedly promote."

[Apr 06, 2016] Basic Instinct

Basic Instinct 1992, iMSB rating 6.9. Should probably be less then 6.

Perhaps I should start by saying that Basic Instinct is very close to a complete trash with nothing residing beneath its glitzy surface. Douglas (born September 25, 1944) is way too old for the role, despite his valiant attempt to demonstrate vigorous sex, almost a rape, in his scene with his colleague, a psychologist Beth Garner(Jeanne Tripplehorn). These scenes also turned Michael Douglas into a sex maniac and partially ruined his first marriage to Diandra Luker.

Both Sharon Stone and Jeanne Tripplehorn look very unconvincingly with their attraction to this old shoe. Who actually in 2000 he managed to marry Catherine Zeta-Jones (25 years younger, born September 25, 1969), but we do not know how much this was about the money and glory and how much this was about love.

It's a little bit strange that such a beautiful young lady as Jeanne Tripplehorn feels attraction to such an old, worn out guy, who already lost most of the male attractiveness he used to have in his better years (see Fatal Attraction, 1987) and in 1992 unfortunately became just an old shoe.

I will not go deeply into plot details, but in summary volatile cop Nick Curran (Michael Douglas) falls in love with murder suspect Catherine Tramell(Sharon Stone) who may, or may not, have brutally murdered her lover with an ice pick. She is a cocaine addict so she by definition has some socipathic features, typical for cocaine addicts ("cocine induced sociopthy"). But actually she is more sociopathic then that.

At the centre of the film is Catherine Tramell "adventures" (and Sharon Stone's performance). Catherine Tramell is a writer of sleazy novels, who the stage murders according to the pulp trash she has written. Tramell writes about sex, murder and betrayal. She's accused of murdering her Rock-star boyfriend. Who was killed with an icepick after she had sex with him. Like all sociopaths she feels no guilt and no sadness. But she is so transparent and so obviously a totally immoral human being that she's not doing a very good job of it all.

But she becomes boring after the first 40 minutes. And when she becomes involved with Michael Douglas, her character almost completely loses her mystique. Generally she is too schematic: she loves coke, sex and Jack Daniel's... She is enigmatic ('How does it feel to kill someone?'), cool ('I like men who give me pleasure.'), frank ("What are you going to do? Charge me with smoking?") penetrating ("I've always had a fondness for white silk scarves"'), in complete command of herself... A bisexual heiress, who teases, tempts and commands… That's way over the top and looks grotesque. Stone depiction of a female sociopath Tramell, sexy, cruel, devoid of compassion, pervert, is very good. The problem is that she is just too obvious. This is not how female sociopaths typically operate. She does demonstrate some sociopathic charm...

And as Detective Nick Curran noted such people can pass a lie-detector test with filing colors. As many female sociopaths she is also a sex addict.

If the plot sounds familiar its probably due to the fact that Basic Instinct is essentially a combination of writer Joe Eszthera's film 'Jagged Edge' and director Paul Verhoeven's film 'The Fourth Man', both of which had their fair share of sex and violence.

Take out the leg-crossing scene and the sleek, admittedly well-filmed and thunderous sex scene (almost a rape) between Nick Curran and Beth Garner away from Basic Instinct and you get a third rate junk movie.

The most interesting and somewhat educational scene with her is the interrogation scene (aka the leg-crossing scene). In this scene she is just superb! She coolly turns the tables on cops and prosecutors by exploiting their libidos and reducing them to drooling idiots. She also uses her knowledge of Nick Curran (she is writing a book about him) to her advantage. While totally unrealistic it is easily the film's best scene and certainly one that is not going to be soon forgotten. In this scene she does have that psychopathic-siren charm that is dangerously alluring and thus right for her character. Her sex scenes with Nick Curran are just boring, while quite explicit. Nick Curran actually should think twice getting in bed with such a woman, even if he is trigger happy cops with low rating as for self-preservation instinct (which is more basic instinct then sex :-).

Take out the leg-crossing scene and the sleek, admittedly well-filmed and thunderous sex scene (almost a rape) with Jeanne Tripplehorn and you get a third rate junk.

Jeanne Tripplehorn deserves special mention for her impressive supporting role of a psychologist Beth Garner (this was her first important role). Her character is also sociopathic, and in many ways is much more impressive then Stones's character. One important thing is that she is not obvious and is very difficult to decipher. Viewers do not suspect her being a villan until the very end of the movies, which gives the movie somewhat of Hitchcock flavor. Also in the scene when she gets into her car after talking to Nick Curran we can learn something about psychopathic woman. The mask is just thrown out immediately and completly. We see a different woman in an instant. She is also highly educated and phychically is more attractive then Stone, which makes her quite dangerous personality on her own right. It was she leaked damaging files on Nick Curran, who was her lover, to Catherine Tramell(Sharon Stone) and not only to her.

[Mar 24, 2016] DL Minors review of The Devil Wears Prada

www.amazon.com

Amazon.com

No Issues With The Killer Title, But..., March 19, 2010 By DL Minor This review is from: The Devil Wears Prada (Widescreen Edition) (DVD) Well, I'm all over the map about this movie, I really am, finding something to agree with in almost every review here, including the least positive.

The positives are these: I adore the look and pace of the film, the to-die-for clothes of course, and the performances (first and foremost) of the great Meryl Streep as the towering, terrifying Miranda, the winning Anne Hathaway as the perpetually harassed Andrea, the dependable Stanley Tucci as Miranda's long-suffering, witty-wise second-in-command Nigel, and the wonderful Emily Blunt as the bitchy, put-upon first assistant...uh, Emily. All of them--especially Streep, Tucci and Blunt--bring both bite and (mostly hidden) heart to what could have been a collective phone-in of annoying caricatures. And though we really only get glimpses of him here and there, I also enjoyed Rich Sommers's endearing turn as Doug, the sweetest of Andy's circle.

I am seriously ambivalent however, about what the message of this movie is supposed to be, especially to women, and the alarm bells really go off when--SPOILER ALERT--Andy reconciles with her boyfriend, Nate, telling him he was "right about everything."

What? What exactly was he so "right" about??

I don't know about you, but I found Nate, the boyfriend character, absolutely insufferable through almost the whole of the movie. I'm pretty sure he was supposed to be the voice of reason that tries hard to keep Andy grounded and remind her what's truly important. Instead he came off as a sulky brat who could not accept his girlfriend's growing pains as she struggled to cope with an impossibly demanding, first ever grown-up job that nothing in her easy-going schoolgirl existence had prepared her for. Were there no demands being placed on Nate in HIS choice of career? Was his job supposed to be the more important one?

Ditto Andy's best friend, Lily, who seemed to me increasingly more jealous of Andy rather than supportive of her. Lily too was pursuing Bright Lights-Big City dreams that demanded a lot from a young newcomer, after all, so how is it that she had such a hard time with Andrea's chaotic ups and downs? Where did Lily get off being so judgmental and disapproving? This is friendship? I watch these performances and can't decide whether actors Adrian Grenier and Tracie Thoms made poor choices in their playing of difficult characters or if the characters as written were simply impossible to like. Either way, both were a whiny pain in the rear, especially Nate, and Andy's mea culpas to him near the film's conclusion were tough to take.

No one disputes that Miranda Priestley was a Boss From Hell who routinely wiped her feet on her young assistants, particularly Andrea. But we also see that ultimately Miranda was as human as anyone else; a glamorous workhorse whose alley-fighter smarts hid real pain. And it should be said that Andy--who was in the beginning quite smug in her disdain of all the fashionista "shallowness" that surrounded her--had a knocking down or two coming. (I loved the way Nigel simultaneously comforted Andy and took her to task after an especially bad morning.) If Miranda put Andy through the wringer--and she did--well, she also taught her some important things (sometimes unwittingly) about hard work, hanging tough, and the choices we make in life to get to where we want to go or need to stay. Andy could have quit at the end of her first week (I think I would have) but no matter how bad or insanely silly things got, she didn't, at least not immediately. On some level she became aware that she was getting an education she wouldn't get anywhere else from anyone else, and there was value in that. I think she knew that; I hope she knew that. I hope the audience does, too.>

[Mar 24, 2016] Gone Girl Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler Perry (2014)

" A movie about passion, lies, obsession, the death of love, and living with sociopaths, this is a remarkable movie."
We go back to "the morning of", and we learn the truth - Amy is alive and she staged everything to lead up to her disappearance. She is seen driving away from Missouri with her arm bandaged up with a blood spot evident on the inside of her elbow. Amy had used a variety of pens to make recent diary entries appear as if they were written over the past 5 years, and periodically threw each one out the car window. It documents a happy marriage deteriorating to the point where she buys a gun because she is afraid that Nick may kill her. She even faked her pregnancy by befriending pregnant Noelle and making her think that Nick was hurting her. Amy drained her toilet and offered Noelle lemonade until she had to use the bathroom. Amy then stole her urine and used it to submit it for the pregnancy test.

On their fifth anniversary, Amy told Nick to take a walk and really think about their marriage, knowing full well he would go for a walk in his favorite isolated spot along the beach and thus have no alibi. Meanwhile she set up a crime scene to make Nick look guilty. Her plans included suicide so that her body would be found to completely frame Nick. To make sure she's not found out, she cuts her hair, dyes it, and makes herself look unkempt and disheveled. She begins eating large amounts of junk food to gain weight. She hides out at a small resort under the name Nancy, even hitting herself in the face with a hammer to sell the idea that she is hiding from an abusive boyfriend. She befriends a woman named Greta (Lola Kirke). Amy tells her how she came across Nick leaving the bar with Andie during a snowy night, wiping her lips before he kissed her the same way he kissed Amy when they first met (this part is true). With her plan working perfectly, she postpones her suicide for another month.

Bryanon February 7, 2016

what a wife

I never would've guessed I'd be giving Gone Girl a 4-star rating based on what I think is a HORRIBLE first 35 minutes of writing. It's about a man (Ben Affleck) and his wife (Rosamund Pike) who are having severe relationship issues, but put on a front and pretend everything's okay. Rosamund's significantly smarter and more successful than Ben is, so she takes care of all the finances. She's the one who's in control.

The first 35 minutes or so is so horrible because the writing is veeeeeeeeery slow. All we see during this time is Ben and Rosamund going to fancy dinner parties and finding themselves in sudden romantic/sexual situations. They both come across as the snotty/high and mighty rich type which rubbed me the wrong way and made me *strongly* believe Ben and Rosamund were the wrong actors/actresses for the film. I even thought about turning the movie off because it didn't appear to be going anywhere, however...

Something really amazing happens an hour in. Perhaps the most amazing thing I've seen in a movie in years, in fact. The story is that Rosamund went missing and the cops are constantly pestering Ben for clues about her disappearance because all signs indicate Ben's behind it all. He should be arrested on the spot. It appears that someone has kidnapped Rosamund extremely carefully as to cover their tracks. The story becomes so well-known that hundreds in town protest in Ben's front yard and want him arrested because the clues make him look incredibly guilty, and Ben not really caring isn't helping matters. Even when Ben gives a speech to plead his innocence nobody believes him, so the people continue hanging around. This makes it hard for his sister (Carrie Coon) to walk to the front door, and she too has trouble believing Ben since he was sleeping around with other women.

Now this next part is a spoiler and I recommend NOT reading it if you haven't seen the movie, but the thing is I feel like I have to mention it since it occurs in the middle of the movie when the storyline goes in another direction, and not describing it would make my review feel incomplete. Here it is-

Turns out Rosamund staged her disappearance, and she did it in a way that makes Ben look very guilty. This segment shows how Rosamund goes *way above and beyond* what any normal-thinking person would do as a sick prank or well, not even a prank. She MEANT to stage her disappearance and death in a mean-spirited way to get revenge on her husband. This is an *extremely* appealing piece of writing. Rosamund did everything from smearing blood on the floor just the right way to having a picture on the shelf positioned just enough so as to show a supposed "struggle" between Ben and Rosamund took place, which would have shaken the picture and made it fall. Who would ever be able to think THIS far ahead in staging their own death/disappearance while making the other person look guilty! It's really one of the most carefully planned staged murders/kidnaps I've ever seen, haha.

It makes me wonder just how much hatred Rosamund must've been keeping inside to go through with such a plan. Being incredibly smart and able to pull something like this off is one thing, but the kind of anger that was building inside of her? And the writing's so memorable it makes it look like Rosamund's being somewhat reasonable here, since she is the good housewife who never did anything to disappoint her husband!

Well for the second half of the movie (and I seriously hope you didn't turn it off before then, but I'd understand if you did given how boring the first 35 minutes are) Rosamund's hiding in a small building somewhere in the country with swimming pools and a nosey talkative neighbor (Emily Ratajkowski) who turns out to be suspicious (which caught me by surprise) the moment she finds out Rosamund is hoarding money during a game of miniature golf. Other characters come into the picture including Neil Patrick Harris who's apparently an old boyfriend of Rosamund's who's very nice to her.

Another SPOILER about the ending. I almost wish Rosamund had stayed in hiding the whole time and planned yet *another* elaborate trick to stay away from both the cops and Ben. Wow that would've been something but I certainly won't complain about the writing and storyline direction the way it is.

Perhaps Ben Affleck should have shown more concern that his wife was missing in the beginning. This *did* make him look suspicious whenever he was questioned heavily by the cops. He was just too quiet and calm, though I guess you could interpret this as depressed (or later on when it's revealed what Rosamund's like and what she's capable of, he just didn't care about his wife given the unusual kind of relationship they had).

Moments of Gone Girl are dark comedy but the movie doesn't mention this in the description. It just says the movie is drama/murder mystery. I highly recommend watching Gone Girl but a lot of patience on your part is required as the story builds really slowly.

Paul Donovan TOP 1000 REVIEWER on October 12, 2014

A twisty and twisted new classic

Nine Things About the Movie "Gone Girl" (USA, 2014)

1. One of the best movies of 2014, this multi-layered, wickedly brilliant film is a great adaptation of the 2012 novel.

2. It was directed by David Fincher. He collaborated with Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross again for the smoothly foreboding soundtrack. Fincher has developed a unique cinematic style, and this movie is a showcase of it.

3. The heart of the movie is a mystery - a wife disappears from her home on the morning of her anniversary. But not only do we not know who did it, we don’t even really know what happened.

4. The movie flips back and forth between the husband’s perspective and the wife’s, slowly unfolding its secrets like a black, poisonous flower.

5. Besides the core mystery, the movie is also a commentary on media hype, along with trial by popularity. Nancy Grace probably wishes she could sue somebody for this movie.

6. Perhaps more chilling than the mystery is the depiction of what has to be the most dysfunctional marriage in cinematic history.

7. The movie is almost 3 hours long, but it doesn’t feel like it. The plot is tight - no scene is wasted. The dialogue is snappy and razor-sharp. The acting is awesome, from the main characters all the way down to minor roles.

8. Part of the reason the movie works so well is that the author of the book, Gillian Flynn, also wrote the screenplay. It’s set in Missouri and feels pretty authentic, probably because the author is from Kansas City.

9. A movie about passion, lies, obsession, the death of love, and living with sociopaths, this is a remarkable movie. It also reinforces my belief that I never ever want to get married.

CMM on December 10, 2014 Gone Girl is the Complete Package.

Gone Girl took the world by storm. And I'm not just talking about the film. The book (I highly recommend this read) by Gillian Flynn quickly became one of the bestselling novels of 2012. Through word of mouth, people left and right were finding out about this tale of a dark and twisted marriage. It was seen almost everywhere, so I was no surprise that the rights would be snatched up (by Reese Witherspoon, nonetheless). And the stage was quickly set for David Fincher to work his dark directing magic.

The story tells of a married couple, Nick and Amy Dunne, on their fifth wedding anniversary. That morning, Amy mysteriously vanishes, leaving behind a rather suspicious trail of evidence. The authorities and the media quickly swoop down on Nick, who seems nice enough, but is oddly evasive and may not be telling the whole truth. As events unfold, you will be left wondering how well you truly know the person you love.

With jaw-dropping performances from Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Tyler Perry, Carrie Coon, Neil Patrick Harris, and Patrick Fugit, you will be in for a treat. These actors portray their respective roles with such power and perfection, and I was pleasantly surprised. I think you will be as well. I expect to see award nominations for these players within the coming weeks. If not, I will riot.

Not only is the acting fantastic, but the score paints a beautiful picture as well. Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross (who scored Fincher's last two films--The Social Network and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo) have returned to deliver an astounding and haunting score that perfectly suits the story. Equally peaceful and disturbing, it mirrors the characters' behaviours as their secrets are unveiled.

Gone Girl is the complete package. Creepy, witty, breathtaking, you will finish this movie with your jaw open. I guarantee it. Truly beautiful, Fincher has outdone himself. I recommend purchasing this at your earliest opportunity.

California Dreamingon October 30, 2015

The Devil's in the Details

About a year ago, I moved from one of the most dangerous cities in California -- Vallejo -- to one of the safest -- let's just say north, somewhere around Silverado Trail. For good reason. Not too long afterwards, a woman in Vallejo claimed she was kidnapped and was run through the mud by the police department for it. Well, she's suing, and I hope that she wins.

I believe on the exact day of the kidnapping, I was actually talking with someone who still lives in that town, and I said, "Look, anything can happen in Vallejo. ANYTHING. Not only that, but this couple doesn't meet the profile. They both work at a local hospital, and what do they have to gain from a so-called 'hoax'? So I think that the boyfriend is telling the truth." (Sure, those weren't my exact words, but they were close. But at that time, the kidnap victim hadn't yet been rescued, so the only information that the police had at that point was from the boyfriend, which the police just didn't believe.) As you may have heard, as it turned out, the victims were telling the truth, and I was right while the police were wrong. Told you so.

So in this sense, I don't understand why the media is still calling that harrowing tale the "Gone Girl Kidnapping." After all, there is a lot of deception in this film, while the couple who endured the event in Vallejo were telling the absolute truth; the only deception came from the kidnapper, and maybe the police.

I have heard that this film was inspired by the Scott Peterson case, but in reality, I believe that the screenwriter actually used another case much more. There is a true-crime show called "Nowhere to Hide" on the ID Network -- a show that I really like, as Private Investigator Steve Rambam seems to be a real straight shooter -- and on the very first episode on the very first season, there was an episode entitled "Three Doctors, One Wife." (I'd have to watch this episode again to verify, but I'm fairly sure this is the one. It is available on Amazon, and I highly recommend it.) And this episode describes a real-life sociopath, psychopath, and narcissist of the worst kind that "got her jollies" (and money) by running all of her ex-husbands through the mud.

This is one of those films where it's pretty much impossible to discuss plot without introducing spoilers, so I won't even try. The camerawork is fantastic, and the acting is truly first-rate. In reality, the "weak link" here is surprisingly Ben Affleck, but that's only because everyone else is so danged good. In particular, Carrie Coon just rocks, and Rosamund Pike is beyond chilling as Mr. Affleck's wife. I hate not listing the rest of the cast, because they are excellent too, but there are just too many good performances. Furthermore, the movie soundtrack is perfect, and the direction is almost as good as it gets.

If this film does fall apart anywhere, it is in the plot holes of the writing. Without a spoiler, why does the Affleck character do what he does in the third act? I just don't get his motivation. I read a lot of true crime, and I know what criminals have tried and how victims usually respond. And I will say that this plotline is simply too complicated -- and unbelievable -- for its own good. Go back and watch "Sixth Sense" if you disagree with me. In reality, even though it actually is quite complex, everything -- minus perhaps "ghosts" for disbelievers -- is believable.

Well, to that couple in Vallejo, I will only say the following: "I hope you make Vallejo file bankruptcy. AGAIN." And to the screenwriter of this film? "Perhaps create something simpler next time, because in reality, the devil is in the details. And there are simply too many details in 'Gone Girl.'"

Zachary Koenigon October 8, 2015

Captures Most Of The Book's Bizarre Mystery

Its a little tough for me to watch/review "Gone Girl" seeing as how I had already read the book. For a plot that relies heavily on surprise and misdirection, I already knew what was going to happen, and that obviously makes it a different viewing experience. I was very impressed, however, by how the film was able to capture the basic essence of the Gillian Flynn novel (maybe it helped that Flynn wrote the screenplay herself!).

For a basic plot summary, "Gone Girl" tells the story of Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck) and his wife Amy (Rosamund Pike). One day, Nick comes home and finds his home a crime scene and his wife gone. Lead investigator Rhonda Boney (Kim Dickens) immediately suspects Nick, whose Ivy League nature and shadowy past make him seem like a viable candidate for the crime. Despite initial support from sister Margo (Carrie Coon) and Amy's parents (played by David Clennon & Lisa Banes), the case against Nick seems to keep getting worse and worse. Could he really have killed his wife?

This movie excels in a number of different areas. Flynn is able to seamlessly move the plot from book to screen (no easy task) while still retaining its creepy nature and haunting themes. The casting is also spot-on. Affleck is playing practically the role he was born for (good-looking suave guy who may just be a complete slimeball) and Pike is similarly perfect in her own way. I can see why this one was nominated for a number of Academy Awards.

Of course, probably the hallmark of "Gone Girl" is that besides spinning a great mystery, it also provides some subtle (or not-so-subtle) commentary on the institution of marriage. I wish I could say more, but to do so would be the ruin the surprises for those who haven't seen it yet. For lovers or young newlyweds watching this movie, I can easily see it producing either deep conversation or very awkward moments.

Why not a five-star rating? Well, my exact ranking would be 4.5 stars. I have to go the other direction, however, primarily because I HAVE read the book previously. If there is one thing that doesn't transfer over it is a little bit of the deep commentary on relationships in general. "Gone Girl" is a psychological thriller, so some of that is probably better examined in the slower pace of the novel. While reading the book, I was completely sucked in and entranced. Most of that carried over into this film, but not necessarily ALL of it.

Of course, I can easily see someone who doesn't know the plot ranking this a five-star effort all the way. It manages to tell an individual mystery filled with over-arching themes about relationships and marriage. A truly haunting tale.

[Mar 23, 2016] The Proposal

This movie came in 2009 and was definitely heavily influenced it the first part by 2006 ground breaking (for female sociopaths) movie The Devil Wears Prada .
Notable quotes:
"... The setup of the first 25 minutes clearly apes the set-up of David Frankel's The Devil Wears Prada but has some notable scenes (firing episode; bulling her assistant to marry her) that has some educational value. ..."
"... The scene when she blackmails Andrew into pretending that he's her fiancé is probably the best in the movie. One of the few that deserve watching it several times. ..."
www.amazon.com

Sandra Bullock definitely knows her audience. The type of character she plays here - an abusive female bully hiding a very vulnerable, lonely interior - is played to perfection. This is the type of character she is known-for: her "brand." Only first 25 minutes of the film make sense. After the the plot disintegrates in third rate melodrama.

The setup of the first 25 minutes clearly apes the set-up of David Frankel's The Devil Wears Prada but has some notable scenes (firing episode; bulling her assistant to marry her) that has some educational value.

Sandra Bullock project the character of a cold and often cruel personality of a female bully pretty well. She's also mean-spirited, pointing out personal faults that she generally has no business to reveal.

But she is less stereotypical boss from Hell, then the main character of The Devil Wears Prada or Office space. But may be beacuse for those monents we saw her there was no downsizing efforts of the floor ;-)

Bullock is playing female bully who is book editor (Margaret Tate), a workaholic careerist who instills fear into her entire office. Her bullied assistant Andrew Paxton, Reynolds caters to her every whim in the hopes that she eventually will help boost his publishing career. The scene when she blackmails Andrew into pretending that he's her fiancé is probably the best in the movie. One of the few that deserve watching it several times.

[Mar 20, 2016] Misogynist Jonathan Bennett, Jon Briddell, Eve Mauro, Tracey E. Bregman

www.amazon.com

Amazon.com

TAXES AND TANGERINES

By The Movie Guy on August 16, 2015

Format: Amazon Video

Trevor (Jon Briddell) takes the love torn Harrison (Jonathan Bennett) under his wing and teaches him about women. Harrison in return recruits more students as Trevor has created a cult where he teaches men how to control beautiful women by basically being an a-hole. Much of this low budget film is guys talking about what women want, lumping them all together as if they are the same and can all be treated the same. There are some flashbacks.

I found the discussions boring. Women might like watching this, thinking it is akin to a Cosmo article on what men are like, but I found it insulting as it too lumps men all together as simply animals that want to completely control women and use them as sex objects. BTW that naked girl on the cover is not in the film.

Guide: F-bomb, sex. No nudity. Some violence.

The Battle of the Sexes ... With A Touch of Revenge

By Edward L Zimmerman TOP 1000 REVIEWER on April 6, 2015

Format: DVD

The battle of the sexes has quite probably been around as long as – well – as long as we've had sexes. I've heard it said that the male mind will never effectively grasp what goes on inside the female of the species, and no doubt it's been challenged vice versa. Rather than seeking to understand it, what happens when we just want to make the best use of what's in there instead? That's part and parcel of what's lurking near the core of MISOGYNIST, a film that may challenge some viewers to sit until the finish … and if they do they just might be rewarded with something to talk about afterwards along with some pretty spiffy independent performances.

(NOTE: The following review will contain minor spoilers necessary solely for the discussion of plot and/or characters. If you're the type of reader who prefers a review entirely spoiler-free, then I'd encourage you to skip down to the last three paragraphs for my final assessment. If, however, you're accepting of a few modest hints at 'things to come,' then read on …)

From the product packaging: "Trevor is an extreme misogynist who campaigns underground seminars, teaching his ideology of women. Only through referrals and word of mouth, he provides bizarre, offensive, and outlandish strategies to young men, with the promise that they can control any woma. His best student is Harrison, a young man Trevor took under his wing when he was most vulnerable. Viewing Trevor as a father figure, Harrison will do what Trevor instructs him to do. Soon Harrison starts to realize that he is just a pawn in Trevor's plot …"

I'm stopping there because methinks the last bit on the box spoils too much of the finish, though I've no doubt others may see this conclusion coming, especially if they're watching closely. I did, but I have to say that that didn't happen by enjoyment of MISOGYNIST, a slightly uneven film that vacillates between an effective performance piece for gifted actors (all around) and perhaps the sickest revenge flick one might stumble upon.

At the center of the conversation that dominates the first half of the picture are Trevor (Jon Briddell) and Harrison (Jonathan Bennett), two men who upon first meeting would appear to be polar opposites. But when the real action of the film begins (three years later), we find out that they've become curious soulmates – two peas in the same pod – and they're destined to make Trevor's philosophy for mastering the attentions of any women into a successful underground business. (How do they make money on this is never clear, but it ultimately isn't all that important to the story being told.)

And just to clarify for those still reading: there is at least one woman around throughout the lion's share of philosophizing (Cheryl, played by the comely Alia Raelynn). As a character, the dynamic is such that she's meant to reinforce Trevor's world view, and she does this in both the more public and private moments of this story.

Now, all that said, I can certainly understand how some might object to the subject matter explored in a film titled MISOGYNIST. Let's agree that this isn't the kind of feature that's going to be for everyone; Trevor's particular take is rude, offensive, and decidedly misogynistic (hence the effective name) … but there's more to the story here than just offending others. And – for the record – yes, we've all known men who've been able to treat one woman after another the way he does while receivable favorable results. Such is the battle of the sexes I cited at the opening: it's a never-ending battle, and no doubt it'll continue to defy understanding until our sun grows cold.

However, in MISOGYNIST's second half, the story takes a turn, chancing a somewhat predictable reveal that tries to modestly redefine who Trevor is and why he behaves the way he does. As much as I appreciated the twist, it's also easily to dismiss it as the film's most cinematic conceit – the kind of thing that always happens in movies.

Still, kudos to writer/director Michael Matteo Rossi for making what could go down as the worst date movie ever but doing so in a way that makes it worth talking about. That's no easy feat.

MISOGYNIST (2013) is produced by Four Legged Pictures, Italian Cowboy Productions, and Ryan Ricketts Productions. DVD distribution is being handled by the reliable Midnight Releasing. As for the technical specifications, this is one smartly shot indie feature, so audiences can expect some high quality sights and sounds to accompany it. Lastly, if you're looking for special features, then you do have some short behind-the-scenes bits along with an audio commentary to look forward to.

RECOMMENDED. At times, MISOGYNIST felt more than a bit incomplete to me: what started out as a pretty dynamic performance piece morphed into a macabre revenge flick in the latter half, and I'm not entirely sure both halves gelled the way they should've. Still, when it worked it worked, and the film boasted smart scenes, interesting dynamics, and a kind of water cooler appeal rarely seen in most indie fare these days. Well worth the 76 minutes, my friends, though not without some discomfort, I'm sure.

In the interests of fairness, I'm pleased to disclose that the fine folks at Midnight Releasing provided me with a complimentary DVD copy of MISOGYNIST by request for the expressed purposes of completing this review; and their contribution to me in no way, shape, or form influenced my opinion of it.

[Mar 20, 2016] Psychopath John Purdie, Rosalind Arden

Notable quotes:
"... Unfortunately, as far as a psychopath is concerned I am far better off seeing them as an alien life form who does not possess the same emotions that puts the word human in term human being. ..."
Amazon.com

A look at recent research into the brains and behavior of psychopaths and the prospects for treatment or containment of this antisocial group. Psychopaths who have been convicted of appalling crimes explain with disturbing clarity what motivated them. 48 minutes.

Nonfiction Only, January 13, 2016

Interesting and informative, however...

The danger of this film is that people watching who have not studied psychopathology will look at the descriptive words drifting across the screen and remember that glibness, manipulative, remorseless, conning, lying, and charismatic are traits of a psychopath and may look at loved ones, friends, coworkers and others in a different, and perhaps wrong, light. Hare's psychopathology scale is the industry standard but it consists of 40 items that must be a cohesive group of traits within an individual. Not all 40 of the marker traits were shown. The other danger is that many of the traits shown and discussed, such as an abnormal amygdala, flat affect, lack of emotion, and disconnected are also traits of those with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and other disorders.I gave it a 4 star rating because it was informative regarding research and the results of experimental treatments.

Victoria J. Dennison, January 11, 2016

This is a very good documentary which attempts to explore the mindset of a psychopath. I was surprised at the amount of psychopath's in the U.S. and England. I didn't think the dysfunction of Psychopathy affected so much of the population. I too believe a person can be born as a psychopath and that it is basically a wiring problem with the brain. Bio-psychology with an emphasis on Neuro-Science does hold the key to remedy many brain dysfunctions such as alcoholism and other mental health issues including psychopathy.

As a person who has a lot of empathy, I can understand the therapists dilemma in trying to work with psychopaths within the prison system and the inevitable failure of behavioral modification. I always view another person as having the same feelings and needs as I do.

Unfortunately, as far as a psychopath is concerned I am far better off seeing them as an alien life form who does not possess the same emotions that puts the word human in term human being.

It was interesting that one psychopath who was being interviewed (in prison) mentions that a person learns from birth and develops a conscience. At which point he mentions "a baby learns not to touch a stove when it is hot". In my opinion touching a hot stove and learning not to burn yourself does not involve the conscience at all. Could it be since he never experienced the pangs of "conscience" and that basically; he doesn't know what it is?

Caton March 15, 2016

Insightful, educational and scary...

The statistics noted in this documentary, if accurate, are really frightening. Apparently, unlike zombies, psychopaths are quite common and do walk among us. The information is put forth in an entertaining yet sober fashion, with interviews with actual psychopaths and numerous members of the forensic psychological expert community. I wish it was a lengthier documentary or had additional parts to it because it was so interesting that I wanted to learn more about the topic.

George Edmondson, March 3, 2016

Interesting study of this disease.

Interesting study of this disease. It also sheds a bright light on why politics are (as opposed to appear to be) crazy.

Karen Roberton November 19, 2015

PSYCHOPATHS RUN THE WORLD.

Great film, when we discover the precise way to identify and diagnose true psychopaths,...society will be stunned to know just how many police, politicians, inter-governmental parasites, and assorted corporate CEO scum that there are sabotaging societies in every country; but whom will have the courage and fortitude to identify and eject these maladjusted maggots to the heavily fortified mental institutions where they belong.

[Mar 20, 2016] Notes on a Scandal starring Judi Dench, Cate Blanchett, Tom Georgeson, Michael Maloney

"... Barbara, on the other hand, is a textbook sociopath. Though initially enraged over discovering Sheba's affair, she decides to use it to her advantage so that she can back Sheba into a corner. Barbara doesn't care about the student and she doesn't really care about Sheba either. All she cares about is winning her prize. She is a ruthless predator. ..."

J. Marren VINE VOICE on April 20, 2007

Chilling

This grim drama of sexual manipulation is a story where almost everyone is a victim.

Barbara trains her sights on Sheba as she struggles with the chaos in the school and helps her out, but then discovers a secret to hold over her.

Judi Dench manages to portray a woman who is despicable and pitiable at the same time, while Blanchett draws on our sympathy despite unforgivable transgressions.

The themes are very disturbing, and there's no happy ending -- Barbara moves on while the other characters pick up the pieces. Blanchett's young art student may be the only one to emerge unscathed--but I won't say more.

This film is most definitely for adults only, and some will be offended by the subject matter. But Dench gives a magnificent performance, as always.

Bookphile VINE VOICE on December 23, 2007

Chilling

This is yet another example of fine British cinema. What makes it so singular for an American like me is this is a movie that centers around two women, where said two women have most of the screen time, and where the male characters are secondary. It proves in a most masterful way that movies about women can be complex, interesting, and every bit as compelling as movies that center around male characters. And with two such stellar actresses as Judi Dench and Cate Blanchett, how could the moviegoer go wrong?

This movie is a really wonderful and intricate character study. Though Blanchett's character sounds like she should be the villain, having violated one of the most sacred trusts the public places in its schools, Dench's character is no less menacing. What is truly astonishing about this film is how Blanchett's character comes out as more sympathetic in the end.

What Sheba does is abhorrent but it is also horrifying to watch how Barbara tries her best to catch Sheba in her net. Though Sheba's actions are morally repugnant, she is not without a conscience and she knows that what she has done is wrong and that it will tear her family, her school, and her young lover's life apart.

Barbara, on the other hand, is a textbook sociopath. Though initially enraged over discovering Sheba's affair, she decides to use it to her advantage so that she can back Sheba into a corner. Barbara doesn't care about the student and she doesn't really care about Sheba either. All she cares about is winning her prize. She is a ruthless predator.

Blanchett is fantastic as Sheba. She makes the character three dimensional so that the viewer can understand what has driven her to commit such a heinous act, though her reasons for it do not in any way excuse her actions. Still, it is really an experience to watch a film and see a villain who is multi-faceted and who reminds the viewer that all humans are fallible. She is a woman with a sickness, a woman who is deeply disturbed and who sets into motion a chain of events that she hasn't the least idea how to stop. Watching her life unravel is visceral and though she deserves to be punished it is still alarming to watch her walk right into the trap Barbara has set for her.

As for Dench, she is simply incomparable. Barbara is completely without feelings for anyone other than herself and she is incapable of understanding the pain of others. She is like a spider, slowly spinning her web and waiting patiently for her victims to become entrapped within her threads. Every scene that she is in is filled with such creepiness that it sends a shiver down the spine of the viewer. What is worse, she has established a pattern of behavior and suffers no consequences because of it. In this way, the film poses another interesting moral question.

That people like Barbara exist is undeniable and that they get away with their actions goes without saying. While society certainly needs to protect itself from those whose crimes are transparent, what about those of someone like Barbara, who quietly set about destroying the lives of others.

Hollywood needs to take a hint from British cinema. If you take a strong story with interesting characters and cast formidable actors in the lead roles, people will not only see the movie, they will absorb it. Since this film is entirely devoid of explosions and high-speed chases, however, I will assume that Hollywood won't be emulating it any time soon. In that case, I will continue to look to the British filmmakers.

1 Comment 22 people found this helpful.

Jay Dickson VINE VOICE on April 20, 2007

The Top of Their Game

For all it is an entry into the "girlfriend/ temp/ babysitter/ boyfriend/ roommate/ etc. from hell" films of the late 80s and early 90s (such as FATAL ATTRACTION, THE TEMP, SINGLE WHITE FEMALE, FEAR), NOTES ON A SCANDAL is still a terrific and excitingly paced melodrama showing two splendid actresses--Judi Dench and Cate Blanchett--at their absolute best.

Dench is a fire-breathing older woman teaching history in a London public school who has a hidden history of stalking and erotomania; Blanchett is the new art teacher, unable to handle a classroom, escaping from her incredible family demands (including a son with Down's syndrome) who befriends Dench and starts having an affair with a manipulative 15 year-old student.

When Dench develops an obsession with Blanchett, and discovers the affair, the sparks really fly, and the movie builds at an even more breathtaking pace. There's not much point to the film (other than that all single people in the film seem determine to wreck Blanchett's marriage), but who cares when you can see two actresses as fine as Dench and Blanchett work so splendidly.

Dench has a role here perfectly within her range as the rebarbarative and covetous Barbara Covett; Blanchett (as always) seems like you've never seen her before, this time as Bathsheba Hart, Covett's beautiful prey. The overdramatic score by Philip Glass is less obstrusive than it might have been given the tremendous scale of these two actresses' performances.

1 Comment 22 people found this helpful.

[Mar 18, 2016] The Last Seduction

"Bridget is a woman with a warm exterior that has ice water running through her veins, who believes in manipulating others into doing her dirty work for her." See also The Last Seduction
Amazon.com

Desireeon August 23, 2007

Modern Noir At It's Best

When you think of film noir, you think of the wonderful dark movies made in the 1940's with thugs, and "dames", and vamps. I don't think there has ever been a better vamp than Linda Fiorentino in this movie. Lana Turner in The Postman Always Rings Twice and Kathleen Turner in Body Heat might come close, but first prize belongs to Linda for her performance as Bridget Gregory in The Last Seduction.

Bridget is a woman with a warm exterior that has ice water running through her veins, who believes in manipulating others into doing her dirty work for her. Great supporting performances by Peter Berg and Bill Paxton, but the movie belongs to Linda Fiorentino. You'll love to hate her in this dark erotic thriller that will take your breath away.

Does anyone have a good list of female sociopaths in movies or television shows

Yahoo!
1] "The Last Seduction" - Bridget Gregory, played by Linda Fiorentino, a mean, unremorseful sociopath.http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0110308/

2] "Fatal Attraction," Alex Forest, played by Glen Close, cruel and crazy

3] "Play Misty for Me," Evelyn Draper who stalks and tries to kill Clint Eastwood's character.

4] "Natural Born Killers, Mallory Knox, played by Juliet Lewis, goes on killing spree w/Woody Harrelson

5] 'Monster" with Charlize Theron, serial killer

6} "Romeo is Bleeding," Lena Olin's character, Mona Demarkov http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0107983/

7] "Basic Instinct, "Sharon Stone as Catherine Tramell.

8] "Single White Female," Jennifer Jason Leigh as Hedy Carlson.

9] "The Hand that Rocks the Cradle," Rebecca De Mornay as Peyton Flanders.

ani

Kathy Bates was amazing in Misery. She played a crazy delusional fan who captured her favorite writer and was just basically nuts. Definitely a must see.

The boss in Devil Wears Prada could also be one.

The aunt in The Girl Next Door (the one about the girl who gets abused, not the one about the hot chick next door)

Any Disney movie with a villian is usually a woman. Especially in the female ones. I mean, look at all the step mothers, hah.

Rebecca Johnson

Girl Interrupted!! Angelina Jolie plays the character of a sociopath named Lisa and does a GREAT job!

Favorite Female Sociopath

Movie Forums

How many of you has seen the movie "The Last Seduction"? Bridget Gregory/Wendy Kroy, who is played by Linda Fiorenting has got to be the the top of the list of unremorseful females. I have watched this movie a few times, though the plot seams abit nonrealistic, her character is so using. Another movie that comes to mind is "Body Heat".

agent_007

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This category is commonly known as femme fatale.

Jane Greer as Kathy Moffat - Out of the Past

This chick is deadly, and then some. She brings down just about everyone she comes in contact with in this film, playing the victim almost the entire time. At one point, she poses as another character in the film (appropriately named Meta), whom we never see again afterward. It's as if Moffat actually absorbs her.

One of my favorite films of all time.

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Charlize Theron in Monster. She totally embodied the essence of Beetlejuice/serial killer.

Rebecca De Mornay was better than The Hand that rocks the Cradle.

I'll second Linda Fiorentino's femme fatale in The Last Seduction. She's such an epic bitch.

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