Monster

  • Directors: Patty Jenkins
  • Producers: Charlize Theron, Mark Damon, Clark Peterson, Donald Kushner, Brad Wyman
  • Writers: Patty Jenkins
  • Genres: Biography, Crime, Drama, Romance, Sport
  • Actors: Charlize Theron, Christina Ricci, Bruce Dern, Lee Tergesen

After moving to Florida, Aileen Wuornos (Theron), a prostitute, meets Selby Wall (Ricci) in a bar. Selby takes to Wuornos almost immediately, as she likes that Wuornos is very protective of her, even though she notices that the older woman is deeply disturbed. They have a small romantic encounter at a roller rink and quickly become committed to one another, and move into a motel.

After being raped and brutalized by a client (Lee Tergesen), Wuornos murders him and decides to quit prostitution. Eventually, it becomes difficult to pay the bills and Wuornos tries to find legitimate work, but finds it difficult because she has no real qualifications, is uncultured, and has a very bad temper. Desperate for money and resentful of the men who use her for sex, she commits several murders, each more brutal than the last, robbing her victims after killing them. (The last man she kills is actually not a customer, but a man merely offering Wuornos a ride home.)

Wuornos is eventually arrested and speaks to Selby one last time while in jail. Selby reveals incriminating information over the telephone and Wuornos realizes Selby is with the police. To protect Selby, Wuornos states she committed the murders alone. During Wuornos’ trial, Selby testifies against her.

Aileen Wuornos was convicted and sentenced to death.

Last Man Standing

  • Directors: Walter Hill
  • Producers: Walter Hill, Arthur M Sarkissian
  • Writers: Ryuzo Kikushima, Akira Kurosawa, Walter Hill
  • Genres: Action, Crime, Drama, Thriller
  • Actors: Bruce Willis, Bruce Dern, William Sanderson, Christopher Walken, David Patrick Kelly

In Prohibition Era Texas, a mysterious character (later identifying himself as “John Smith”) drives into Jericho, a town mere miles from the Mexican border. Gang violence between the resident Irish gang (headed by Doyle) and Italian gang (headed by Strozzi) has decimated the town and left few legitimate citizens remaining, aside from the bartender Joe Monday, an undertaker and a corrupt sheriff, all of whom make their living by catering to Jericho’s criminal elements. Smith immediately establishes a reputation by outdrawing and killing Doyle’s top shooter, a brazen act that gets the attention of both gangs. Smith promptly hires himself out to Strozzi’s gang for what Strozzi predicts is an upcoming gang war following the impending dissolution of an uneasy ceasefire. He dispatches Smith to oversee an operation where the corrupt Mexican soldiers guarding Doyle’s illegal alcohol smuggling change alliances mid-operation and murder Doyle’s men, stealing the product and trucks in the process.

Amidst constant bickering and accusations by Strozzi’s hotheaded cousin Giorgio and unwanted attempts at investigating his past, Smith quits Strozzi’s gang. Doyle returns to Jericho and immediately asks Smith to join his gang, which Smith politely declines. Smith later tells Strozzi a rumor about the Mexican soldiers returning to Doyle’s ranks, forcing Strozzi to send Giorgio down to smooth things over. Later, Hickey (Christopher Walken) returns to Jericho and informed of the Mexican soldiers’ betrayal, travels to Mexico and ruthlessly guns down the soldiers, several of Strozzi’s men and an American police officer. Hickey leaves Giorgio alive as a hostage. An exchange is arranged between the two gangs, where Giorgio will be exchanged for money. At the swap, Hickey shoots Strozzi’s bagman, revealing the contents of the suitcase to be newspaper. When Doyle threatens to kill Giorgio unless Strozzi surrenders and leaves Jericho, Strozzi pulls out Felina, Doyle’s mistress whom he previously abducted and demands a clean exchange for Giorgio. The exchange is made and the two gangs scatter, leaving Smith standing alone over the discarded body of Strozzi’s bagman and newspaper blowing in the desert wind.

Two days later the Sheriff arrives at the church, informing Smith that Doyle has discovered the bartender’s complicity in Smith’s escape and will probably torture him to death to find him. Smith re-arms himself with a large bread-knife. The Sheriff gives him his dual 1911 Colt semi-automatic pistols instead. Smith goes back to the Red Bird Saloon, collects his hat and extra magazines then storms Doyle’s mansion, gunning down a dozen men before freeing the bartender. He mounts a tommy gun onto the shattered remains of the mansion, signaling Doyle and Hickey to meet him at Slim’s Roadhouse at sunset. In the final scene, Doyle, Hickey and Bob the Deputy meet Smith and the bartender. Doyle, happy with his victory over Strozzi, is despondent over the loss of Felina and begs Smith to tell him where to find her. The bartender promptly shoots Doyle and Smith shoots Bob before he can retaliate. Hickey raises his hands and asks if Smith is going to have the bartender shoot him too. The bartender lays his gun down and watches how Smith and Hickey will react. Hickey expresses no desire to die in Texas (“Chicago maybe”) before turning back on Smith. With lightning speed he quickdraws a pistol from his holster (just as he had done before when he killed the Border Patrol officer), but Smith is faster, and kills Hickey. With all the gangs dead, Smith slides holster’s his gun, steps into his car, and drives off into the sunset.