For Special Services (1982) – John Gardner

John Gardner’s second 007 novel, updating Ian Fleming’s James Bond for the 1980s, is on the book shelf this week, and delivers the crisp, solid, sex and violence filled thrill ride we’ve come to expect from England’s top spy. This story, set largely in America, sees the return of Bond’s old nemesis, SPECTRE, with the…

To Live and Die In L.A. (1985) – William Friedkin

I don’t know how it happens, but between the watching and the re-watching, I constantly forget how awesome To Live and Die In L.A. is. I know it’s good, I love this movie, but I seem to be consistently stunned every time I settle in for this one. Amazingly I didn’t see this film upon…

Torn Curtain (1966) – Alfred Hitchcock

Paul Newman and Julie Andrews star in this thriller from director Alfred Hitchcock. And while the Master of Suspense is still a fantastic director, this one isn’t quite as thrill-packed as the poster would suggest. Which is not to say it isn’t enjoyable, the leads are wonderful, and it’s a very enjoyable story, it’s just…

The Man With The Golden Gun (1965) – Ian Fleming

The twelfth James Bond novel, and thirteenth book, The Man With The Golden Gun, was published posthumously in 1965 after Ian Fleming’s death in ’64. The story picks up about a year after the events of You Only Twice. When we were last with 007, he was suffering amnesia and had taken up a quiet…

The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956) – Alfred Hitchcock

James Stewart and Doris Day find themselves caught up in international intrigue and a political assassination in Alfred Hitchcock’s The Man Who Knew Too Much, a remake of his own film from 1934. While on a working holiday that takes the family to Paris, Casablanca and Marrakesh, Dr. Benjamin McKenna (Stewart), his wife, Jo (Day)…

Saboteur (1942) – Alfred Hitchcock

Hitchcock delivers a fantastically paced thriller, that stirs in some patriotism and humour as every man Barry Kane (Robert Cummings) finds himself caught up in a conspiracy on the eve of war. Kane works in an airplane factory, and is doing his part for the blossoming war effort. But when he inadvertently helps a fellow…

Pickup on South Street (1953) – Samuel Fuller

Jean Peters sizzles in this spy/crime film noir that is another film mentioned in Philip Kemp’s Movies book. It also falls into the category of how had I never heard of this film before? As it ticks a lot of my boxes, spies, film noir… it’s a corker! Candy (Peters) is on the subway, and…

The Living Daylights (1987) – John Glen

It’s time for another Bond film to join the 007 on the book shelf. And we come to one of my favourites, and the first one I ever saw in the theatre. Until this one came along, I had worked my way through the James Bond films in no semblance of order, as I was…

The Hunt For Red October – 30th Anniversary Edition

Somehow the film adaptation of Tom Clancy’s The Hunt For Red October is thirty years old and has garnered an anniversary Blu-ray 4K release from Paramount Pictures. That number just seems off, because thirty years seems like a fairly long time ago, and that doesn’t seem right. The original novel came out in 1984, and…

Green Zone (2010) – Paul Greengrass

Paul Greengrass who guided Matt Damon through The Bourne Supremacy, The Bourne Ultimatum, and later Jason Bourne guides the same actor through this war thriller that comes off the What Else to Watch list following my screening of The Hurt Locker as recommended by DK Books’ highly entertaining The Movie Book. Miller (Damon) is an…

Toronto After Dark 2019: Homewrecker (2019) – Zach Gayne

Toronto After Dark brings another Canadian film into their Film Festival with Zach Gayne’s Homewrecker, starring Precious Chong and Alex Essoe, and pairing these two actors on screen brings this somewhat familiar premise to an electric conclusion. Essoe is Michelle, a young millenial in a marriage she’s unsure of with the hopes of building a…