Revisiting…Live and Let Die (1973)

At times, Live and Let Die is almost like an anti-blaxploitation movie.

Of course, it is very much a product of its time, and there is no serious slight intended, but watching it you are reminded of just how far society has come in regards to its representation of ethnic groups, so far that its often prejudiced content now comes across as laughable rather than offensive. Here, the movie’s superfly brothers are slick, drug-dealing criminals who occasionally dabble in voodoo, but classic Bond was always a franchise steeped in sweeping stereotypes, regardless of race of creed. Go back far enough, and there is reason enough for everyone to be offended…

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On Deadly Ground (1994)

There is a story about Steven Seagal which may or may not shock you.

One day an executive walked into Seagal’s trailer and found the star weeping. ‘Oh, I’m reading this script,’ Seagal explained, his head shaking in disbelief. ‘It’s the most incredible script I’ve ever read.’

‘That’s fantastic,’ the executive said, ‘Who wrote it?’

‘I did,’ the star replied.

It is this kind of self-gratifying smugness that permeates Seagal’s directorial debut

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Waterworld (1995)

Poor Kevin Reynolds.

After experiencing huge success with 1991’s Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, he would be handed a budget of $175,000,000 to direct dystopian spectacular Waterworld, and although that sum may seem paltry by today’s standards, this was more than a quarter of a century ago, and at the time it constituted the world’s most expensive movie, a fact made so apparent in the mainstream media that the production was almost bound to fail, and in many quarters encouraged to…

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The Evolution of Indiana Jones – Family Matters

Despite a mixed critical reception for the culturally offensive ‘Temple of Doom’, audiences’ lapped up the experience of a third Indiana Jones movie.

After a brief hiatus to focus on more serious fare in the form of The Colour Purple, Empire of the Sun and Always, a third instalment was always going to be an irresistible draw for Spielberg, Lucas, Ford, and an audience hungry for more…

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The Evolution of Indiana Jones – Darker Pastures

The beauty of coming up with a character who was originally conceived as James Bond without the gadgets is that you can treat him like Bond.

As long as you can come up with a situation, a new location, some new characters and a new dilemma within which to place your hero, then you have the grounding for a new film. There is no need to reference a previous film in order for the formula to be effective. That is clearly what Spielberg and Lucas had in mind with Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom…

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