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A Full Tank of Gas Movie Reviews A Full Tank of Gas Movie Reviews

A Collection of 1345 Movie Reviews Written by Richard Cross

Latest Movie Review: Interstellar (2014)

Interstellar (2014) Movie Review

Nolan seems to have decided that the key to grabbing an audience is to mystify and puzzle it, and then reveal an oblique resolution which invites endless discussion.   But whereas his Inception was a truly original concept, Interstellar comes across as a pale rehash of a certain Kubrick movie, with a wormhole near Saturn substituting for a monolith on the moon. (Read more)




2011-2014 Movie Reviews


2001 - 2010 Movie Reviews


The Imitation Game (2014) Movie Review Splice (2009) Movie Review

While there’s a strong suspicion that Moore uses artistic licence to create some dramatic situations that probably never occurred, The Imitation Game succeeds in finding suspense in situations that really shouldn’t possess any, and I guarantee that the Eureka moment in which Turing and his team finally make their breakthrough will raise the hairs on the arms of all but the most jaded of viewers. (Read more)

With Vincenzo Natali’s Splice, the Frankenstein legend is given a high-tech makeover, while thudding into every predictable plot-line you can think of.  We get two Frankensteins for our money here: genetic engineers Clive Nicoli and Elsa Kast. Elsa’s one of those independently-minded women which means that she’s a real pain in the backside who ignores other people’s opinions if they conflict with her own, and who, in real life, would be unable to maintain a relationship for more than three months with any man in possession of appendages that swing. (Read more)  


 The Imitation Game (2014)

Splice (2009)



1991 - 2000 Movie Reviews

Things to Do in Denver… (1995)

1981 - 1990 Movie Reviews

From Beyond (1986)

Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead (1995) Movie Review From Beyond (1986) Movie Review

If ever there was an example of style over substance, Things to Do In Denver When You’re Dead was it.  The movie looks terrific, and the ridiculously handsome Mr. Garcia looks sleek and elegant as the meticulously garbed Jimmy the Saint.   Unfortunately, the story doesn’t really hold up under close scrutiny; screenwriter Scott Rosenberg seems incapable of allowing one character or incident to pass without attempting to inject each with some element of quirkiness. (Read more)

As Gordon has only a cartoonish story and strictly one-dimensional characters to deal with, he takes the sensible decision to focus the movie on the effects.   What makes movies like this so enjoyable is being able to appreciate all the effort that has gone into creating these illusions.  It’s ironic that since advances in technology have made it possible for a computer to create wholly convincing effects that are limited only by the programmers’ imaginations we seem to have grown increasingly indifferent to the fantastic creations they place on the screen. (Read more)



1971 - 1980 Movie Reviews

Motel Hell (1980)

1961 - 1970 Movie Reviews

Bonnie and Clyde (1967)

Motel Hell (1980) Movie Review Bonnie and Clyde (1967) Movie Review

Motel Hell creates the kind of scenario that could prove truly chilling if played straight from the viewpoint of a victim, but Connor and screenwriters Robert and Steven-Charles Jaffe play it largely for laughs.   Calhoun and Parsons’ character are semi-comical hayseeds, and their younger brother Bruce (Paul Linke) is a small-town cop only a step or two above the likes of Roscoe P. Coltrane.   There’s even a couple of swingers straight out of some bad sex comedy who provide some ‘light relief’ before being gassed and planted next to all of the Smith’s other victims. (Read more)

David Newman and Robert Benton’s original screenplay had Barrow enjoying a bizarre homosexual encounter with the couple’s sidekick, C. W. Moss (Michael J. Pollard).   Thankfully, this departure from the truth was deleted from the shooting script, but was replaced instead by Barrow’s problem making love to Bonnie, which was also fictionalised, and which was presumably included to offer some kind of explanation for why such a likeable man leads an irredeemable life of violent crime. (Read more)



1951 - 1960 Movie Reviews

The Ladykillers (1955)

1941 - 1950 Movie Reviews

Spellbound (1945)

The Ladykillers (1955) Movie Review Spellbound (1945) Movie Review

The Ladykillers is the last of the great Ealing comedies from the 1940s and ‘50s and is by far the funniest of them all, even though its humour is of the blackest kind imaginable.    The diverse characters complement one another perfectly, and virtually every cast member plays their part to perfection.   Katie Johnson looks as though a strong wind would blow her over, but she proves to be an indomitable foe for the crooks who earn her wrath. (Read more)


Neither Bergman nor Peck convince as highly-intelligent psychiatrists, although I suppose Peck doesn’t really have to.   Bergman sometimes wears spectacles to indicate the serious intelligence of her character, but crusty old Dr Brulov probably accurately sums her up when observing that “the mind of a woman in love is operating on the lowest possible intellect.” (I can’t see that line making it into any future remakes, somehow). (Read more)



1931 - 1940 Movie Reviews

Freaks (1932)

1921 - 1930 Movie Reviews

Safety Last! (1923)

Freaks (1932) Movie Review Safety Last! (1923)

What remains of Freaks today suffers from typically poor early-talkie-era acting and a weak script to which no less than five writers contributed.   Despite this, it possesses an undeniable power thanks to its main attraction: the unfortunate souls whose physical aberrations spelled exile from regular society. The concept of this oddball community forced together by their physical defects is an effective one that is nevertheless under-utilised here. (Read more)

Safety Last! is arguably the greatest of Lloyd’s features.   Compact and streamlined, it wastes not a second of screen time, allowing no opportunity for a gag to pass it by.   Only a sequence in which Lloyd has to tie himself in knots attempting to fool his girlfriend (Mildred Davis) into believing he’s the General Manager of the store in which he toils as a lowly sales assistant suffers from a poor pacing.   It’s a mark of the quality of the entire film that, even though we know that the superlative finale in which Lloyd’s character scales the side of a skyscraper is to come, we never feel impatient for that act to begin. (Read more)



1911 - 1920 Movie Reviews

The Mark of Zorro (1920)

1901 - 1910 Movie Reviews

The Story of the Kelly Gang (1906)

The Mark of Zorro (1920) Movie Review The Story of the Kelly Gang (1906)

The title character was played by Douglas Fairbanks, one of United Artists’ founders, and marked a change of direction in his screen career which would see him portray a succession of heroic figures such as Robin Hood, D’Artagnan and The Black Pirate throughout the 1920s.   He was an unlikely action hero in many ways.  With a round, slightly pudgy face he looked more like a hero’s sidekick… (Read more)

Film language had not yet developed to an extent that it was capable of supporting a long film, so while it was a sensation back in 1906, what remains of the film today is curiously dull – and yet also fascinating – and there’s little doubt the whole film, if it existed intact today, would be excruciatingly dull for most people. (Read more)


1891 - 1900 Movie Reviews

Annabelle Serpentine Dance (1895)

Annabelle Serpentine Dance (1895) Movie Review

The girl in the picture is quite interesting.   Her name was Annabelle Moore, and she was no more than 16 years old when Annabelle Serpentine Dance was filmed, and she went on to become a star with Ziegfeld’s stage extravaganzas in the early years of the twentieth century.   A couple of years after this movie she would cause a minor scandal by revealing that she had been asked to appear nude at a private dinner party. (Read more)