Milius

Review based on a free copy provided by Amazon – by it here. *Originally written in 2013.

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It’s about damn time. For decades now, John Milius has been the leading renegade of Hollywood, directing a number of hits, writing some of the most important moments in Cinematic history, and contributing to some of the greatest films of all time. Finally, with this documentary he gets the reverential treatment and respect he deserves – a fantastic, comprehensive documentary which acts both as dedication and memoir, history and story, and hopefully a piece of media which will bring the man back into the spotlight and gain him some recognition with modern audiences.

Through a variety of interviews new and old, archive footage and movie clips, Milius charts the rise, and supposed fall, of the original maverick. We learn of his politics, often confused by others, his views on storytelling and Hollywood itself, and hear many hilarious stories about his early days as a writer and encounters with Hollywood suits. For those not familiar with him, there is a checklist of people he has directly influenced and worked with – the documentary is a who’s who of American Cinema with Spielberg, Lucas, Coppola, Schwarzenegger, Stallone, Scorsese and so on recounting their tales. It is a fascinating story with many wonderful insights into the legend’s character. Hopefully he gets back to full health soon and gets to make a few more classics, as the days of the Hollywood renegade seem almost forgotten and needs someone to kickstart another revolution. He was part of the cinema revolution of the Seventies, so why not again?

Growing up in the 80s I was always a big fan of Milius, with hits including Conan The Barbarian and Red Dawn as well as writing on numerous films – Jaws, Dirty Harry, Apocalypse Now – he is an integral part of movie history and anyone with a passing interest in cinema should enjoy this. It’s a fast moving, well detailed, and entertaining couple of years in the company of some of Hollywood’s finest.

Let us know in the comments what you think of Milius the movie, Milius the man, and the work he has done.

Amazon Vine Freebies – November 2013

Well well, it has been a long time since I shared by generous bounty with you. I’ve been off helping James Woods battle aliens on a distant planet, only pausing amidst the carnage twice a month to check what Amazon has wanted to give me. The last few months have seen a shift from electronics to groceries, and while I’m all for eating biscuits and cereal, i’d still rather eat a TV. In November I received thus:

Drug War: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00D9SRC8I

Johnnie To is back in peak form with this crime-action drama featuring a strong ensemble cast and many moments which reminded me of the best in the genre – Heat, Infernal Affairs etc. There are some great performances, plenty of action packed set-pieces, and a twisting, finger nibbling plot.

Milius:http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00ECVPP62

John Milius has always been one of my favourite directors, and is easily one of Cinema’s best, underrated writers. Jaws? Apocalypse Now? Hunt For Red October? Dirty Harry? Conan? Rome? The list goes on, and this documentary follows his career from early Film School days with Lucas, Spielberg etc, features many amusing anecdotes from some of Hollywood’s most important people, and proves both that you can make your dream come true (if you have a big enough gun) and that the world needs more Milius.

Philips AVENT DECT Baby Monitor SCD560/01 with Light, Lullabies and Temperature Sensor: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00ECWMWD0

Baby sensors are always handy, especially when you have babies, and possibly more so if you are under attack by a horde of zombabies (I guarantee that before the year is through someone will have made a movie called ZOMBABIES).

Finish All In 1 Lemon Sparkle 78 Dishwasher Tablets: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00820VLNU

Bizarrely not a wepon to use in a futuristic murder-sport, the Finish Powerball (I guarantee that before the year is through someone will have made a movie called POWERBALL) lays waste to grim, wreaks havoc on dirt, and creates billions of orphan germs by sweeping through your dishwasher and leaving everything shiny, lemony, and sparkly, like a Sprite flavoured vampire.