During the dumbassery of King John back in merry old England, Brother Thomas -along with a gaggle of lesser intestinally fortified brethren- commits treason, kicks ass, takes names and breaks his vow of chastity all for the greater good of church and state. This flick is a veritable CGI wet dream chock full of gore galore and bone crunching blows so realistic you can almost feel the arterial spray and chunks of brain hit you full in the face. No complaints except this movie should have been retitled to something more apt, such as “Templar Van Damme” or “Die Hard: The Templar Version.”
Dateline Europe Middle Ages. No one is spared from the scourge of the plague. Meanwhile, a group of god-fearing mercenaries commissioned by an Abbey and led by a teenage monk travel into the depths of the mysterious forest to, well, that part wasn’t really all that clear. Doesn’t matter, tho, because this movie is a cross between Centurion, Ironclad and Excalibir. When the mercenaries end up in a remote village whose inhabitants are plague-free, their eventual conflict with each other becomes a medieval battle royale over whose god’s dick is bigger. Noteworthy parts include an Apocalypse Now-like prisoner cage in freezing cold water and an exceptional drawing/quartering scene involving Sean “Eddard Stark” Bean.
Lincoln has been assassinated; Booth has since been found and shot to death, and yet someone has to pay for the crime in order for the American sheeple to be satisfied. Enter poor Mary Surrat. Mary is a mild-mannered, god-fearing widow with two adult children just trying to survive by renting out rooms in her home to transients. Meanwhile, her son, John, is caught up in a cauldron of hate for the North and associating with other post-adolescent malcontents. Mary Surrat was the original victim sacrificed by the civil war era federal government in the name of political expediency over due process of law. Don’t miss this most excellent account of how the State can crush the individual when it suits it to regardless of any alleged rights contained in the Constitution. History has repeated itself during our own time as a result of the destruction of the Twin Towers.
Winter in Wartime
(Disclaimer: Obligatory foreign flick offering). Michiel is a bored teenager who spends his time riding his bicycle and otherwise stirring up shit with his neighbor in Nazi-occupied Holland during WWII. He unwittingly becomes part of the anti-war underground when his friend’s older brother asks him to pass a note to another friend in the village. When Michiel is unable to get the message to the contact, he reluctantly opens the note only to discover the location of an injured RAF pilot barely older than himself hiding in the woods from the Krauts. Meanwhile, all is not as it seems with his father and favorite uncle, Ben. In the end, Michiel learns exactly who he is.