FilmJerk Favorites

A group of unique directors and the essential works that you've got to see.

||| John Ford |||
John Ford

One of the art form's grand masters of all time, Ford is responsible for influencing the seminal directors of generation after generation. Strongly associated with the impressive body of work created over a lifetime with collaborator John Wayne, it is nearly impossible to choose just threeÖ but here it goes.

This powerful winner of the Best Picture Academy Award is set in Wales at the turn of the 19th century, and tells the story of a family of miners, whose lives are filled with danger and repression. The film is beautifully crafted, lovingly depicting the gut wrenching sacrifices and light-hearted moments that are elemental to family life, making this film a true representation of the craft that is unmistakably John Ford.

This film is told in flashback as James Stewart, after a long absence, returns home for the funeral of a friend who saved his life from a sadistic outlaw. This classic covers every essential element required to qualify as a western epic from unlikely friends to the girl who comes between them, to the enemy they both despise, but handle with extremely different approaches, to Fords signature cast of supporting characters, all combine to make this a staple for every fan of this uniquely American genre.

This romantic comedy seen through the eyes of John Ford has John Wayne ( an American-raised boxer) go to Ireland to the village of his birth, fall for feisty Maureen O'Hara, and fight with town ruffian Victor McLaglen in one of the all time classic screen brawls. This is an exceptionally fine romantic movie that with Fordís capable bravado manages to be a film that any manís man can openly enjoy.

Recommended by CarrieSpecht


Welcome Back, Joe Pesci!

By EdwardHavens

August 30th, 2005 has learned that Oscar-winning actor Joe Pesci, who disappeared from cinema screens after his less-than-satisfactory performance in 1998's craptacular "Lethal Weapon 4," has finally been coaxed off the golf course by his good friend Robert DeNiro, for a small but pivotal role in DeNiro's espionage thriller "The Good Shepherd."

From a screenplay by "Forrest Gump" screenwriter Eric Roth, "The Good Shepherd" tells the mostly true story of James Wilson (a character reported to be based on legendary CIA spymaster James Jesus Angleton, and played in the film by Matt Damon), one of the founding members of the Central Intelligence Agency. Beginning as an scholar at Yale, the film follows Wilson as he is recruited to join the secret Skull and Bones fraternity, a brotherhood and breeding ground for future world leaders, where his acute mind, spotless reputation and sincere belief in the American way of life render him a prime candidate for a career in intelligence. Wilson is soon recruited to work for the Office of Strategic Services (the precursor to the CIA) during the early days of World War II, and we follow his exploits around the world during the Cold War, and how his secret life affected his personal relationships. Pesci will play a reputed crime boss by the name of Palmi, one of Wilson's targets.

DeNiro also stars as General Bill Sullivan, the U.S. Army official who hand picks Wilson for the career in intelligence that will shape the world's political landscape. The cast also includes Oscar winners William Hurt and Timothy Hutton, Academy Award nominee Alec Baldwin, and Tammy Blanchard, Billy Crudup, Keir Dullea, Michael Gambon, Gabriel Macht, Lee Pace, Eddie Redmayne and John Turturro. Universal Studios has scheduled a December 22, 2006 release date for the film, which DeNiro is producing with his longtime partner Jane Rosenthal through their Tribeca Productions.

We welcome Mr. Pesci's return to the big screen, where his absense has surely been missed, and hope he doesn't wait another eight years for his next role.