FilmJerk Favorites

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

||| Joseph L. Mankiewicz |||
Joseph L. Mankiewicz

Mankiewicz directed 20 films in a 26-year period, and was very successful at every kind of film, from Shakespeare to western, drama to musical, epics to two-character pictures, and regardless of the genre, he was known as a witty dialogist, a master in the use of flashback and a talented actors' director.

The 1950 Oscar for Best Picture and Screenplay brought Mankiewicz wide recognition as a writer and a director, with his sardonic look at show business glamour and the empty lives behind it. This well orchestrated cast of brilliant and catty character actors is built around veteran actress Bette Davis and Anne Baxter as her understudy desperate for stardom.

One of Mankiewicz’ more intimate films, this highly regarded and major artistic achievement is a spirited romantic comedy set in England of the 1880’s about a widow who moves into a haunted seashore house and resists the attempts of a sea captain specter to scare her away. This is a pleasing and poignant romance that is equally satisfying as a good old ghost story.

Mankiewicz wrote and directed this witty dissection of matrimony that has three women review the ups and downs of their marriages (with all its romance, fears and foibles) after receiving a letter telling them that one of their husbands has been unfaithful. Once again Mankiewicz deftly utilizes the skills of a well-chosen ensemble, which includes a young Kirk Douglas at his dreamiest.

Recommended by CarrieSpecht

Advertisement

Michael Bay wants to scare you "Half to Death"

By EdwardHavens

June 14th, 2007

Michael Bay's production company Platinum Dunes, which has recently realized they can make crappy original movies just as much as they can make crappy remakes of horror films and toy commercials -- I mean animated children's shows -- will begin production this August on the thriller "Half to Death." To quote Morrissey, stop me if you've heard this one before...

Michael Bay wants to scare you

A young college freshman named Teresa is troubled by when she discovers she is living the same day over and over again, one that starts out innocently enough but always ends with her brutal murder by an unknown attacker. Could the murdered be her boyfriend Gregory, who is also sleeping with Teresa's roommate Lori? Or could it be Lori, who is ferociously envious that Gregory might like Teresa more? Maybe it is one of Teresa's classmates, unable to get her attention? Perhaps one of her professors, who cannot consummate their passion for their top student? Or perhaps it's some secret Skull & Bones-type society, who picked Teresa for no good reason to be their ritualistic sacrifice? It's like "Single White Female" meets "Groundhog's Day" meets "Captivity," and certain to be just as terrifying.

Finnish video director Antti Jokinen will make his feature directing debut, from a screenplay by one-time Buffy comic book writer Scott Lobdell. Look for the film in theatres sometime in 2008.


The Scorecard
Producers: John Baldecchi, Michael Bay, Andrew Form, Brad Fuller, Angela Mancuso
Director: Antii Jokinen
Screenwriter: Scott Lobdell
Production Start Date: August 2007
Location: Canada
Production Company: Platinum Dunes and Rogue Pictures
Distributor: Rogue Pictures