About this Blog
First off, a quick introduction: I am your host, the Film Walrus. I’m a St. Louis computer science engineer with a background in, and obsession with, film studies. If you want to know a little bit more about me and this blog, here are some good places to start:
The First Post
How do I review?: Some insight into my opinions and predjudices. If you are interested in meta-criticism, check out Who Will Review the Reviewers.
Personal Life: Miscellaneous posts that (often loosely) relate to myself.
Czech Films: I wasn't actually born there and I don't speak the language, but the Czech Republic is the part of my cultural heritage that I savor most. Their largely-overlooked film tradition is absolutely amazing.
The heart of this site is the many reviews. You can use the labels on the left to search by country or genre.
Reviews with Screenshots: Hey, who doesn’t prefer skimming through the pictures?
Recommended Viewing: These are reviews of films that I rated an 8.5 out of 10 or higher. I also have a completely unmaintained top 100 favorites.
Rants and Ravings: These include free-form Shameless Rants and vehement, usually negative, reviews.
Essays: These are the denser reviews that get a little headier and often involve me whipping out 20 cent film terms and theoretical mumbo-jumbo. If you’d rather see only shorter reviews, try The Hall of Strangeness (more details in the next section).
Lists: Top 10 lists and top 100 lists (and all sorts of other less-round numbers) ranked by me with various criteria.
These are long or reoccurring series or sometimes just areas I’m especially interested in.
Film Atlas: An ongoing series in which I review a favorite film from well over 100 countries! Start with the introduction or use the index of countries here.
Italian Horror Series: This is primarily focused on gialli, a brand of Italian horror films to which I’ve dedicated this site. See the next section for more details.
The Hall of Strangeness: Short capsule reviews (usually a single paragraph) on bizarre or forgotten gems. These are posted in sets of five, in alphabetic order. They are rated from 1 to 5 in terms of fun, artistry and strangeness. See the first set here.
Japanese Directorial History: A brief overview of cinema in Japan with an auteur perspective.
Noir Marathon: This link will get you to all the film noir related material I’ve posted. As a special series I put out eight top 10 noir lists (with categories like best villain and best ending) and a top 100 list (always changing).
Iceberg Arena: These are longish comparison pieces between two or more films that I deem similar in some way. These include:
Olympics documentaries (Olympia Parts I and II vs Tokyo Olympiad)
The five adaptations of ‘Dangerous Liasons’ (Les Liaisons Dangereuses vs Dangerous Liaisons vs Valmont vs Untold Scandal vs Cruel Intentions)
Foreign rip-offs of “Star Wars” (Turkish Star Wars vs Star Crash)
Cheesy Rutger Hauer B-movies (Omega Doom vs Blind Fury)
Fake British documentaries about the apocalypse (War Game vs Threads)
Johnny To action films (Running Out of Time vs Breaking News)
Materialistic mid-90’s family fodder (Blank Check vs Richie Rich)
Similar sounding titles from the autumn of 1980 (Heaven's Gate vs Gates of Heaven)
Hollywood depictions of mutiny (Mutiny on the Bounty vs The Caine Mutiny)
Cult Soviet sci-fi (Aelita: The Queen of Mars vs Solaris vs Kin-Dza-Dza)
Gradiose WWI aerial adventures (Hell's Angels vs Wings)
Feminist vigilante vengeance (Ms 45 vs Bang vs The Brave One)
Death and destruction on wheels (The Cars That Ate Paris vs Death Race 2000)
British sci-fi of the 1950's (The Man in the White Suit vs The Four Sided Triangle vs The Quatermass Xperiment)
Czech sci-fi (Ikarie XB-1 vs The End of August at the Hotel Ozone vs Dinner for Adele)
Ant Attacks (Them! vs Phase IV vs Empire of the Ants)
Vampire movies: Including a week-long countdown of my top 35 vampire movies leading up to the Halloween of 2007.
Poor Little Animated Shorts: A month-long series reviewing ~40 animated shorts covering as much ground as I could. Includes classical cartoons, non-narrative experiments, stop-motion, modern CG and more.
The St. Louis Film Scene (where I'm currently living) including coverage of SLIFF (The St. Louis International Film Festival).
Italian horror movies are probably my favorite subgenre (along with the Czech New Wave). Watching them has turned into a passionate obsession and writing about them has evolved into a beloved hobby. Many of the links that you can find on the right are to other sites that share my love for Italian genre flicks.
For an introduction to Italian horror, particularly the giallo, start here.
Below are the individual giallo reviews I have written so far, listed alphabetically by their generally-accepted English titles. Last updated 01/16/10.
All the Colors of Darkness
The Bird with the Crystal Plumage
The Black Belly of the Tarantula
A Blade in the Dark
The Bloodstained Shadow
The Card Player
The Case of the Bloody Iris
The Case of the Scorpion’s Tail
Death Walks at Midnight
Death Walks on High Heels
Fives Dolls for the August Moon
Footprints on the Moon
Forbidden Photos of a Lady Above Suspicion
The Girl Who Knew Too Much
House by the Cemetery