Keeping Up with the Classics #8


As COVID-19 keeps all of us indoors, I've taken advantage of the time by viewing as many

films as humanly possible.

These are the films I viewed for the first time over the past week:


New and Notable Recommendation

Driveways (Dir. Andrew Ahn, 2020) - Andrew Ahn's DRIVEWAYS is a gentle and keenly-observed drama about a shy boy (Lucas Jaye) who, with his mother (Hong Chau), travels to upstate New York to clean out his aunt's house and befriends an elderly neighbor, Del (Brian Dennehy). Ahn captures the small details of human emotions beautifully, and the performances are universally superb, particularly the late Dennehy who gives Del such sensitivity and internal warmth that he proves once again why he was one of the greats.


Bathtubs Over Broadway (Dir. Dava Whisenant, 2018) - A quirky doc about a David Letterman writer's obsession with mid-20th century industrial musicals (shows produced by big corporations for company events), this endearing and ultimately moving film is full of surprises and passion. A valuable work with high entertainment value.

On Golden Pond (Dir. Mark Rydell, 1981) - A wistful, humorous film about growing old, ON GOLDEN POND is a lovingly-written actor's showcase (Fonda and his perfectly-matched co-star, Katharine Hepburn, both won Oscars). Fonda is sublime in a career-highlight performance, and his scenes Hepburn are cinematic gold.

Piranha (Dir. Joe Dante, 1978) - What easily could have been another cheap JAWS rip-off turned out to be a wickedly funny and exciting horror-comedy about, yes, mutant piranhas. PIRANHA's success lies almost entirely in the work of Joe Dante who proved that he could make the most of a small budget with winning results.

Scoob! (Dir. Tony Cervone, 2020) - With no mystery and no semblance of originality, SCOOB! is a waste of time. There's nothing more to say.

Short Cuts (Dir. Robert Altman, 1993) - Another masterpiece of interconnecting stories from Robert Altman, SHORT CUTS features one of the best ensembles ever assembled as well as fleet-footed direction by a seemingly re-energized Altman (the fact that this and THE PLAYER were released back-to-back is astonishing) that makes the three-plus-hour running time melt away. If you love MAGNOLIA, SHORT CUTS is a must, as MAGNOLIA wouldn't exist without SHORT CUTS.