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more vinegar than wine
sideways is a huge disappointment to this avid film-goer.
i found it vulgar, crude, & wholly unappealing. if you remove the expletives (particularly "f***") you could cut 20 minutes out of the film.
it is virtually a low-budget fiasco.
shame on the actors and actresses who allow themselves to be bought and sold in exchange for their 15 minutes of fame. Oh plays down and dirty from the get-go; Cammi the restaurant waitress character follows Oh's lead. no actual acting talent is required - just stripping and panting. but the men are no better.
thomas haden church is virtually typecast - the character he brings to this film is a clone of the mechanic character he crafted for the TV sitcom "Wings", and little more than an older, sleazier version of his Ned from the thankfully short-lived "Ned & Stacy".
i highly recommend a belt of something a little stronger than a pinot or chardonnay before taking on "sideways".
Dying to Love You (1993)
S T E A M Y ! ! ! !
Not a well-made film, this made-for-TV movie will finally answer the question, "What does Michael J. Fox see in Tracy Pollan?".
Perfect cure for the "I've got the 4 a.m. insomnia blues". Otherwise, don't fail to miss it.
Jurassic Park III (2001)
JP3 lacks the Spielberg touch. It's an all-out assault on the senses featuring "in your face" dinosaurs. Watching this film was a bit like a roller coaster ride from hell.
The script is lame; it simultaneously asks and then leaves too many questions unanswered. Also, we don't really get to appreciate the humans in the film for all they're worth. For example, William H. Macy is too great a talent to have to compete with dino-thugs for our attention. And Laura Dern was especially sympathetic in JP1; in this film, she's barely a blip on the radar screen.
The whole JP3 experience was t o o m u c h. Too much noise, too many surprises, too many characters dying off, too much predictable, gratuitous violence.
Word to the wise: vote yourself off this island.
(I rated it a 3 for special effects; I took off the other 7 points for having absolutely no originality.)
You Can Count on Me (2000)
Count on this: dark, depressing, and meandering.
My friend won a contest on the radio: two free tickets to see YOU CAN COUNT ON ME. Good thing the tickets were free: now we're only out the cost of gas to get to the theater.
You Can Count On Me is a too-long, darkly filmed story about two diverse adult siblings colliding in mid-life.
Poorly cast as brother and sister, Laura Linney and Mark Ruffalo bear not the slightest resemblance to each other. Laura -- blond, fair, almost perky but intelligent; Mark -- dark, brooding, and not too bright. You'd think Hollywood was actually short on talented people who look alike.
We're never sure why ''Terry'' comes back into ''Sammy's'' life at this particular time. Their parents are long-dead, and there's no major life event occurring at this point in their lives. ''Rudy'', underplayed by MacCauley Culkin's baby brother Rory, is nearly invisible throughout the film. He almost never initiates a conversation, and what he lacks in initiative he also lacks in personality, assertiveness, and charisma. He exists only as a pawn in Sammy's dreary life.
Terry at first appears to be an habitual drug user, but gets almost clean and sober just a few minutes after he hits home. Score zero points for realism.
Allegedly, Sammy has lived in this isolated village for virtually her entire life. She has an ex-husband, a brother, a boyfriend and a lover, but NOT ONE GIRL FRIEND. Score more zeroes for realism.
Director Ken Lonergan doesn't seem to think much of women, at least as they're portrayed in this film. The main character is an adulteress. The bosses wife is frigid, the co-worker at the bank is crazy and vindictive, Terry's girlfriend is suicidal, and Sammy's ex-husband's girlfriend is portrayed as pissed-off trailer park trash.
Actually, men don't fare too well, either, under Lonergan's direction. They are, in no particular order, needy, needy, needy, needy and immature.
The direction and dialogue are uneven and choppy. Events unfold in no discernible order. Cinematically speaking, the movie is dark; as a metaphor the darkness is overdone. It's so dark that you may find yourself staring into the theater's exit signs for some visual relief.
There are some mildly humorous scenes, like the ones involving the minister, and Lonergan makes good use of music as a humorous vehicle, but these moments are too few and far between to redeem the film.
I can't, in good conscience, recommend this film. I learned nothing from it, wasn't entertained by it, and took nothing away with me. The subject matter -- the relationships between adult siblings -- is far too complex and intense to be dealt with in a flippant film like this. File this one under ''J'' for Juvenile -- by that I mean, this movie wants to be a film when it grows up. #30
Roseanna's Grave (1997)
An unusual twist on the run-of-the-mill love story. Beautifully presented, well-cast; I laughed, I cried, I watched it twice!
The Glenn Miller Story (1954)
Really, truly, one of the best!
"The Glenn Miller Story" appears on cable-TV from time to time. It is an historically accurate piece about a beloved man whose music defined an era.
Miller is portrayed as a gracious and kind man -- an officer and a gentleman. We see Jimmy Stewart's affectionate portrayal of this simple man who spent his short musical career searching for a particular sound. The results got the whole world dancing to his new beat: Swing! The music in this movie will surely get you on your feet!
The driving force in Glenn Miller's life was his love for his wife, Helen, amicably played by June Allyson.
A "must-see", movie classic. Be sure to bring a hanky!