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House M.D.: Brave Heart (2009)
The one HUGE problem!
There's one BIG problem with this episode that I am surprised got past everybody from the writers to the continuity checkers. It didn't hit me until after I watched it, they do such a good job of telling the story. There shouldn't have been a "happy ending." Think about it. The cop collapsed after being discharged while doing the laundry. Presumably there was some time between his collapse and when the building super found him. Then there was some time between the 911 call and the ambulance arrival. He got to the first hospital and was declared DOA. Foreman orders the body back to Princeton-Plainsboro for their autopsy. Cop is still dead. Suddenly comes back to life on the autopsy table. He should have been a brain-dead vegetable at that point due to severe oxygen deprivation, not someone about to get discharged to go watch movies with his kid. So it loses points with me on that score. Otherwise the rest of it works very well and the season bodes well, if they don't keep making major gaffes like this one!
I Pity the Fool (2006)
Good Idea, but how far can it go?
Mr. T's got an interesting idea here of being a "reality check" for shaking people out of the complacent ruts that we often get into, forcing them to look at themselves and the world around them in terms of the "Big Picture" of things. This is important stuff, and is a good dose of old-fashioned "common sense."
I wonder, though, how well and how long it will play for. The first couple of times might well be interesting, but there's a danger it can become formulaic and dry. Mr. T's personality, humor, and honest intention will carry it far, but it might deliver a more long-lasting message if it evolves into more than just a glorified one-man show.
Lost in the Bermuda Triangle (1998)
Lame, lame, lame
The movie starts with some interesting potential. Bring in Nikola Tesla and it has the possibility to get interesting. Blasted thing had me up late waiting for some grand conclusion or interesting revelation. Instead, whew, lame, lame, lame is all I can say about the ending. I wasted two hours for this drivel? I want my two hours back!!!
The MOST inane thing of the movie is that Mary, a very fair-skinned blonde, (who just learned she was pregnant when she vanished) and her husband, also of reasonably fair complexion allegedly have this son now seven years old when the husband comes to "rescue" Mary. No disrespect to the actor who portrayed the kid, but he doesn't look at all like he could be the biological kid of these parents. A child who looked more like "Dennis the Menace" from the old TV show would have been much more plausible. Further I was hoping that Mary would go back to Chicago, somehow or other miraculously cured of her cancer to the bewilderment of the medical establishment, but she just vanishes again. Literally. There are also a whole boatload of unanswered questions which the film doesn't even think to ask - maybe we're better off - their answers might have been worse than the questions. Like, what happened to the guy we see at the start of the movie? How does Jenny suddenly "materialize" for Sykes? I could go on but you get the drift...
Bottom line on this picture, they started with some good ideas, worked in some interesting potential, and then got lost in the Bermuda Triangle looking for a decent ending. If the picture hadn't started to roll the credits I'd think they should still be out looking.
If it floats up on a TV set near you PASS IT BY!!!
Stanley & Iris (1990)
'Stanley and Iris' show the triumph of the human spirit. For Stanley, it's the struggle to become literate and realize his potential. For Iris, it's to find the courage to love again after becoming a widow. The beauty of the movie is the dance that Robert DeNiro and Jane Fonda do together, starting and stopping, before each has the skills and courage to completely trust each other and move on. In that sense it very nicely gives us a good view of how life often is, thus being credible. Unlike some other reviewers I found the characters each rendered to be consistent for the whole picture. The supporting cast is also carefully chosen and they add a depth of character that the main characters get added meaning from the supporting performances. All in all an excellent movie. The best thing I take from it is Hope.
The Real Cancun (2003)
The Hidden Agenda
If they make it so bad, it might become a cult classic. Think 'Plan 9 from Outer Space.' It's all about the $$$. Imagination and creativity are gone - life sucks and we want to see just how much so, more of the same, pile it higher and deeper. Ya gotta wonder how many of these actors will be putting this one on their resumes?!
How many things?
Whilst the premise of "Search" was interesting, indeed somewhat foreshadowing "The Six Million Dollar Man" by a couple of years, i.e., people with bio-electronic enhancements, the very premise of it limited the show to running out of steam, ultimately. After all, how many things can you search for? Jewels, people, renegade SEARCH-systems scientists, etcetera? Eventually the plot becomes formula, which becomes dull. If they could have done more character development, or given the cast a better chance to act off each other, it might have lasted longer. Still, what was done was done well, until it got boring. Wouldn't mind seeing it in reruns again, though no doubt some things would seem somewhat dated, over thirty years later. Still, it is nice to remember when this show was "cool."
The Time Tunnel (1966)
Rationalizing The Time Tunnel
Yes, it's hokey, yes, it could have used character development, yes, it was a product of its time. But the show was also fun. As far as Doug and Tony mostly landing in historically significant episodes, I've always held the rationalization that since these events had a greater impact for the future, like stronger "magnets," they'd be more "attractive" to time travelers rather than merely day-to-day existences of the majority of people. Of course you have to know what those events will be in advance, and have plenty of stock footage available to make the stories work, but all-in-all it makes for an enjoyable show. One thing to note is whenever anyone wants to sabotage the tunnel, or whenever they've got to get inside the machines, they always use the same panel from the "mainframes" on the side of the control consoles. I didn't realize that week-to-week, but seeing it more regularly brought that to my attention.
A movie and/or new series might be either very well done - or could fail miserably. As Lee Meriwether is the last of the primary Project Tic-Toc support team characters alive, perhaps a show could start from a premise of government agents visiting her in the present to get information about the original Tic-Toc, with maybe some flashbacks from the original series as she tells them about it, then moving into a new show or situation from there. I'd like to see at least one of the original cast members be given a role in a sequel like this. As the series ended in a very open-ended fashion, it would be interesting to return to a long-mothballed Tic-Toc project, have them update the components, then begin the stories anew. Gee, should I start writing fan fiction or what?
Until my thoughts above manifest, when you get the chance, watch the original. It is an enjoyable, nostalgic, blast from the past!
The Lost Empire (2001)
A tale unknown, but fanciful intro
Some other commentators have bemoaned the historical faults, others the romantic interest. To which I say this - first off, it was a made for TV movie. What is the first role of such a movie? To entertain. Perhaps the History Channel will do a more accurate documentary, if that's what people want. As for the romance, where would the movie "Titanic" have been without the love story? Similarly, this movie needs the romantic interest to move the very 21st Century "Scholar" into a position to want to get involved with people that are more the stuff of Myth, Legend, and to a great degree, Hope. Otherwise, why should he bother? "The Journey West" is a story I'd not heard of. Now, even with this fanciful introduction, I think I'll go look it up and read it. To bring me to do this, both the movie, and other comments here, have thus been successful. Microwave up the popcorn, sit back and enjoy the show. Just don't take it too seriously, just enjoy it for the entertainment that it is.
Vanilla Sky (2001)
Good movie. One is best served by the comment from G'Kar of Babylon 5: "No one here is exactly who he or she appears to be." Understatement award to G'Kar.
Kinda cross a bad LSD trip with stunning visuals and a credible ending that neatly ties the pieces as to the why of what we saw and it works very well. Watch "The Matrix" before this one - seeing the one will provide a key to the other. At least, it did for me. Well worth watching because you're given quite a puzzle to be entertained with. The director's commentary on the DVD version adds layers of insights too. All in all a good bang for the proverbial buck.
The Protectors (1972)
Don't ask why some things stick in one's head 30 years later, but the opening theme of "The Protectors" went like this:
In the avenues and alley-ways Where the soul of man is easy to buy, Everybody's wheelin', everybody's dealin' All the lower living are high.
Every city's got 'em, Can we ever stop 'em? Some of us are gonna try...
For the cosmic two cents that it's worth.