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It was fun! Even if a bit redundant. (Spoilers Ahead)
I thoroughly enjoyed this film even in it's most preposterous moments.
I did see all six of the original movies in the theater and found this very nostalgic and refreshing at the same time.
I am happy that they preserved the look and feel of the original movies instead of going CGI crazy (which could have been easily done). And while you could tell Lucas wasn't at the helm (I feel Lucas' pacing and transitions were much cleaner/smoother than JJ's) it still worked in it's own wonky way.
I will rejudge this film when the sequels have played themselves out.
In my opinion, the movie is a set up than anything. It introduced new characters and gave us old(er) folks a (final in some cases) nostalgic taste of the old ones. And it provided endless opportunities to create fresh and (re)freshed story lines.
Likewise, I will always keep in mind that this isn't Pulp Fiction, Fully Metal Jacket, Chinatown, Easy Rider or some other classic film.
But, I do agree with some of the masses - blowing up another large imperial weapon using X-Wing fighters with a side-order of sabotage because a droid ran away with mission critical data a bit of rehash. But, that shouldn't ruin the move or take away from the level of effort required to create the film, the costumes, the sets that are an order of magnitude more than any film today, CGI or not.
And while I can see some disappointment coming from this I can't see the hate.
It's Star Wars - it's almost all rehash.
Even the first trilogy had two Death Stars. And all three movies included a lightsaber duel that generally was near or at the the end of the movie. And the second trilogy had lightsaber battles at the end or near the end of each movie, yet again. Almost every movie had a damsel in some level of distress.
I think Rey's ability to fly the Millennium Falcon, use Jedi mind tricks and wield a lightsaber the way she did was way over the top, unless she's the strongest Jedi since Darth Vader (maybe another grandchild?), but it didn't change my overall opinion of the movie. It was fun! If these failings as a film truly make you dislike it, then don't buy tickets to the next one.
But for what it is - I think it's great.
This is a science fiction movie designed to be fun where people can root for the good guys or the bad guys.
It's an upgraded version of the Sunday afternoon dubbed over martial arts flicks we all used to watch in the 70s and 80s.
I will say, if I see another death star, starkiller or similar large round object with a massive gun, I might wait for video.
As previously noted, I believe JJ needs to work on pacing (which shouldn't come as a shock to anyone). I couldn't take in all the subtleties because it was too fast.
JJ please don't Jar Jar Binks this.
I think that's enough for now.
The Departed (2006)
Entertaining but Nothing Spectacular
For a movie over two hours long I felt like there was a lot missing. A lot of the story felt rushed while at other times it felt like it was dragging. The movie just seemed to fall flat despite all the talent assembled on the screen. I don't know if it was the dialog or all the plot holes (there are a lot of loose ends in my opinion).
I just always felt like I had a lot of interesting characters but I kept asking myself as I watched this film - what the heck is going on? How much got lost on the cutting room floor? Maybe this film needed to be four hours.
I would like to see an unedited unrated director's cut or read the original screenplay for this movie. It covers such a large span of time and seems to jump all over the place without neatly putting things together. And the end seems like a desperate attempt to close off as many open plot lines as possible.
Entertaining, yet frustrating. I expected a lot more out of this film and I don't really feel like it delivered. I recommend waiting for DVD.
This is what I call a formula sports flick. The formula the very unknown local underdog plot line. Decent movie. 99.5% predictable. There's one little part at the very end I think doesn't go exactly as you might expect that might surprise about 1/2 the people watching, OK, maybe a 1/4.
Its got some cool race scenes with an OK soundtrack. Fairly interesting characters. Not something I would go out of my way to see but it makes the time fly when you're ironing shirts.
I enjoyed the movie, but its not one I see myself adding to the home DVD collection unless all of a sudden I become and extreme sports race junkie. Watch it if you want to - it won't hurt.
Muyeong geom (2005)
Very Entertaining (Possible Spoilers)
The Shadowless Sword is an action packed movie with fight scene reminiscent of the House of Flying Daggers and Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon. It has female and male heroes and villains as is typical for this genre versus the testosterone filled American action packed films.
Colorful costumes and artistically done fight scenes. They don't explain the techniques being used a whole lot which might make the exploding bodies at times make more senses versus being funny.
You'll see some really basic symbolism in the movie such as the bad guys wearing black, the good guys wearing white so its easy to tell who is who.
There are some flashback scenes that could have been worked in a lot better than they could have. This film with a bit more work could probably be a very compelling movie as a story versus one lone chase scene. But at not during the film was I checking my watch which is always a good thing.
I do recommend seeing this film if you like far east Asian sword fighting and martial arts in general.
Forbidden Warrior (2005)
Cute & Campy & Consistent
While many people probably expected this movie to be some kind of great martial arts / sword fighting flick; it only delivers on a juvenile level. The fighting contains very little blood, and that which it does have isn't like what you would see even in a PG-13 movie today, but I can't say it was bad fighting, not can I say it was great fighting.
This movie because of the way it was shot reminded me of watching a very long episode of a Hercules style television show. So I'm not sure if this was originally intended for the television or the big screen.
I think the story makes a lot of assumptions about what the watcher knows. They don't explain much about the geography used. Characters have little to know background given. The characters in some respects I believe are so proto-typical that they probably didn't feel the need to tell much about them since their appearance could tell you quite a bit. While I like this about the movie, and it makes it very easy to tell the good guys from the bad guys, in many ways its what I don't like about the movie too. I like characters, well, to have some more character and depth to them! I don't think anyone who watches this will be left going, ugh what a terrible movie, if they have the right mindset. But if you're looking for a serious martial arts / Asian flavored movie then this isn't the film for you.
Million Dollar Baby (2004)
This movie was not a sports movie.
I can't honestly say if there are true spoilers in here, but I thought it would make sense to flag it since I relate some of my comments to the plot which could give it away.
This movie is not a sports movie. This movie is not the greatest boxing movie ever. This is a story about broken people reaching for the stars that just happens to involve boxing.
I recall when the movie came out all I heard about was the "big twist" and the way the movie changed halfway through to something bizarre and . I think that was because many people felt this was supposed to be a female version of Rocky, which it isn't. This isn't a feel good movie about a boxer who go lucky.
This is a story about a bunch of people, who did go after all of their dreams and put their entire lives on the line for it and, in my opinion, despite their best efforts seemed to fall short either due to no lack of trying, but just rotten luck.
Except for Maggie (Swank), In the beginning of this movie each character is flawed and broken, a mere shell of their former selves. This movie could have been done without the using of boxing at all, but I think it was an excellent choice of medium because boxing has been the source of many true bizarre tragic stories.
The portrayal of each of these characters is tremendous and for that alone the movie deserves many kudos. The story is fairly complete. I didn't think there were any real loose ends except for the ones that were deliberately created for cinematic and story telling purposes, not for sequel generation (doesn't everything seem like a trilogy these days?). I believe the filming of the movie was done with in an appealing, yet simplistic fashion, through the clever use of lighting and angles to bring solid atmospheres and emotions to different scenes - in some ways, I feel, similar to what Clint Eastwood did in Unforgiven.
While I feel this was an excellent movie, I don't think this is one I could watch over and over. I like movies like this except for that taste of dissatisfaction at the end, when you feel like nothing was every truly resolved despite the best efforts of the characters or the movie. Maybe I missed, something and there was more resolution that I though, but I don't feel like I did.
And for the parents who might read this, I think high school and up is the age range for this movie. I think younger kids might find some of the material very uncomfortable and disturbing.
Roadside Prophets (1992)
An entertaining film that needed some more work.
This film is about a long journey by Joe, played by John Doe, who really doesn't seem to get what life is about sometimes. Obviously the goal of the film is for Joe to wake up somewhere along the line.
The premise is good but the kick-start is a rather amusing in a bizarre kind of way. Joe meets this guy after his first day working at the same plant he's been at for six years. The guy tells Joe about this little casino out in the middle of nowhere in Nevada which he says is the place to go, where "everyone hits the jackpot". In the process of this they decide to go off and get a drink together. They drive an extremely long time to get to a ridiculously pathetic strip joint, where this guy gets electrocuted from an old video game and dies. I think it is this particular sequence that probably condemns this film to grade "B" cult like status.
The cinematic rendering of this film is very basic and feels kind of throw back for a film made in the 1990s. But I think that is part of what made this film watch-able and entertaining. Its delivery of the required philosophical anecdotes and montages at each stop along the way of Joe's journey, while somewhat campy, is sincere because there was no attempt to embellish the messages by pulling in "A" list actors to recite them as we have seen in other movies of this type. I think the messages are honest, blunt and still relevant today.
I think the use of cursing, cigarettes, alcohol, and partial nudity was completely unnecessary. The film might have been given itself more credibility it the barely partial nudity was cut and the cursing removed. Cigarettes and alcohol are so passé in today's movies that I think to an extent we ignore them anyways.
I do think the use of cursing was due to a lack of more intelligent dialog. A re-make of this film could yield interesting results, even using the same actors and scene sequences. I think the film. But hey, that's just my opinion, watch and judge for yourself.
The Black Hole (1979)
Ahead of Its Time
With the advancement of movie technology today, I am awaiting a re-make of this film as I can see the enhancement of the Armageddon-like atmosphere of this movie.
Even though this film came out on the heels of Star Wars I feel that for its time and its budget it was awesome and very much overlooked. I think in this case, being a Disney film, didn't help its image either. As a kid this movie scared the pants off of me. It was dark and menacing and there was the big black hole staring me in the face the whole movie. (I can still recall the extent of the willies this movie game me).
While flawed I see this movie as an artistic and hard core science fiction classic. It uses many of what I see as key elements in science fiction - known science, theoretical science, possible futures, and our fear of the unknown (I personally think even with what we know, we still know very little about black holes).
This movie was made in the feel of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and Moby Dick, with the mad, yet brilliant captain, sailing a state of the art ship, knowingly, into certain and utter doom in the name of some idealistic obsession. And as it usually goes you have your idealistic yet rational unwilling passengers who want to get off the ship and survive the mad man's nightmarish dreams.
The robots, while used in a highly symbolic fashion, were original in their concept and design. I particularly liked the way V.I.N.C.E.N.T. and B.O.B. were constructed as the "avatars" of humanity - completely man-made with human-like eyes and a "soul", that only allowed them to see the "right" side of things - as we see them. While on the other hand Maximilian was brilliant as the epitome of evil and twisted humanity in this movie - a man silently trapped and condemned to an inhuman fate as part of a mechanical nightmare.
Lastly, I feel that the space backdrops and the internal renderings of the space ship, which I feel have somewhat of an impressionistic flair, are awesome and were very well done for the period. If you passed on this movie the first time I recommend giving it a second chance. Take in the movie - see its symbolism, its social commentaries and far reaching vision. I think some of the issues the movie quietly addresses are still relative today.
Sin City (2005)
A visually stunning masterpiece in black and white
I walked out of this movie, wondering what I had just watched because there was so much in this movie. After reflecting back over the weekend I finally decided that I had to put some my thoughts out in the open. Hopefully you'll find them useful, or at least entertaining.
Taking pages from Dick Tracy, Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill (both volumes), with the influences of the ultra-violent Japanese pulp films (no pun intended), Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller have re-constructed a graphic novel world that one will not soon forget. I intend to watch this film several more times to see how much I missed, because I believe this is a film that has so much going on just one viewing does not allow one to take in all the elements of the film.
From the score, the costumes (some of which were barely that), the characters, the lighting (yes black and white movies do have lighting effects, the transfusion of colors to enhance the significance of a scene or to foreshadow the future of the movie, and the scene sequence and how each was filmed.
Whether your interest is action movies, comic book based movies, or any other kind of movie - I think there is something in this movie for everyone (except the little kids). Some of the older people will remember the days of black and white serials, while others will remember the more recent movies like Hellboy and Kill Bill.
This is a movie to view, review and really think about. I haven't even finished thinking about it, but these are my first impressions. There isn't enough space here for me to really break out all the little nuances of the film. Enjoy the movie!
I enjoyed this movie immensely. I did not find myself looking at my watch or fidgeting in my seat waiting for the film to either move on or end.
I have not read the comic book, so I can not comment how well it did or did not keep to the original story line. The movie uses the fairly traditional good versus evil plot, with the hero having to be one whether he likes it or not. It has been done before, but I found this movie to be somewhat refreshing in comparison to everything else out there.
The supporting cast is colorful and likable. In general, they are used effectively to keep the movie going through their interactions with Reeve's character Constantine. I do think they should have used Shia LaBeouf's character Chas Chandler a little more, but for some reason he seems to vanish at certain points in the movie. Maybe these scenes were left on the cutting room floor to keep the movie condensed and at a reasonable length without killing it.
I did feel some Matrix-like influences on this movie, in the tone, scene site selections, and some of the special effects. But have faith, this movie is not Constantine meets the Matrix. But if you liked the Matrix, regardless of whether you hated Revolutions and Reloaded, I think you will enjoy this movie. It doesn't have the overbearing symbolism or the deafening soundtrack.
If you're a fan of Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Comic Books, the Matrix, or other items along that genre you will hate or love this film. For the casual fan, I think if you want to watch a movie that you will be entertained by I think this is a good choice versus a lot of the other garbage being released today.
But, as always, in the end. Its up to each and every viewer to decide.
Code 46 (2003)
A Powerful Dark and Intelligently Done Movie
Before I digress into my sentiments and observations about the film, I will say I enjoyed this film. It is dark, sad, and tragic. I believe it is well worth watching. With nothing more than that said I highly recommend this film.
This is a science fiction film that at its core sends a message of where the future of science could propel us if something goes amazingly wrong. This movie explores the darker side of science. While enlightening us and de-mystifying the world we live in, it also can present highly advanced ways of controlling us should all that data be amassed by a government or an organization in a non-bystander way.
In this dark world, in a mold no unlike nor matching Gattica, 1984, and Minority Report, people's actions are controlled, monitored and "sanitized" for the good of the people. There is no real discussion of who or what really instituted all this or why, but it's the idea itself that the movie really wants to focus you in on, and the potential ramifications.
The performances of Robbins and Morton are excellent. The use of a "single" unified and integrated language, with elements from all of the world's languages, is an interesting touch, which they pull off without a hint of insincerity.
If you're a science fiction fan, this is one for you. If you're a fan of science itself and its future implications this will make you think about the potential consequences of the major advances in science.
Shrek 2 (2004)
Delightful, Entertaining, and Witty
While most sequels don't live up to the hype, this one does. A very funny follow-up to the original Shrek with the return of many old and the introduction of many new characters. There are tie-ins to several more fairy tale stories too, which you'll have fun spotting throughout the film.
Additionally, this story pokes a lot more fun today's society that the previous movie. In particular, the movie takes some very well aimed swipes at Starbucks, E!, and COPS. I think there may have been a few more, but those were the ones that really stand out at the moment.
I felt that the production, cast, music-wise, and comically was as strong as the previous movie. But, I think the story was a little less cohesive and there were one or two minor holes in the story. But, all in all, the movie was a lot of fun and great bang for the buck. Good for the kids and the adults (which is such a rare treat these days). See this movie! Show the movie industry if its made well, we will come!
Weird, But Intriguing Movie
This movie is interesting in that it is a very complex story that a man wrote about himself, that no one seems to know to believe or not. There's an ensemble cast surrounding Sam Rockwell (playing Barris) that includes Julia Roberts, George Clooney, and Drew Barrymore, that in no way takes away from the amazing performance he gives. Rockwell makes a true name for himself in this film as Chuck Barris.
The visuals are excellent using a mix of lighting and scenery, in combination with a brilliant soundtrack, to portray a man either living two lives or just losing his mind to delusions of fantasy. I personally would be curious to know what in this story is true or not. In addition, has Barris ever had a catscan?
The Big Empty (2003)
An Engaging, Entertaining, and Uncommon Movie
Jon Favreau is excellent in the role of an actor going nowhere fast, except straight towards the weird and obscure. With an air of Donnie Darko and Interstate 60 the movie weaves itself around John Person (Favreau) entrapping him in intrigue and a serious of bizarre events that occur in the middle of the desert involving blue suitcases, a bowling bowl bag, an Indian named Bob, and the Cowboy.
John is sent to do a simple job of delivering a blue suitcase to the Cowboy. As expected everything goes awry from the very beginning. To find out what happens you'll need to watch the movie. I don't want to give it away here. Otherwise what's the point of watching?
Daryl Hannah, Rachael Leigh Cook, Adam Beach, and Kelsey Grammer play the main assortment of strange characters surrounding John. Joey Lauren Adams and Bud Cort round out the rest of the notable supporting cast.
It is a fresh movie because it isn't like most of the mass produced mainstream product promotional tied in wide screen films that we find ourselves over saturated by today. The movie shows how simplicity makes for an excellent movie. It happens in the desert, where the weather is normal, the day is light, and the night is dark. There are no over the top special effects or mind numbing hard rock musical soundtracks (not that I don't like them, but its nice to have other selections). There are just people interacting due to circumstances that seem to be beyond their control. As a result, they try to make the best of it.
Its a movie than can be over analyzed for a long time to come about who, what, where, when and most of all why. But it's a really cool trip of a film. Take a chance on a movie that not everyone has seen, check it out!
The Cat in the Hat (2003)
I believe Dr. Seuss is still rolling in his grave. (Spoilers)
This just might possibly be the worst film adaptation created based upon, or inspired by, a book in the history of film itself. The Cat In The Hat will, thankfully, survive this ridiculous excuse for a movie. While the Cat In The Hat himself will live on as a timeless children's favorite this movie will hopefully be quickly forgotten and have the DVD copies put into a trash compactor.
What they did to The Cat In The Hat is unforgivable. Adult themes. Blatant commercialism, including a shameless plug for Universal Studios (I wonder how much that set them back) and the pop music they put on the soundtrack for the movie. The jokes might have been funny if this movie wasn't supposed to be based upon the Cat In The Hat. Mike Meyers performance might have been considered brilliant if this wasn't supposed to be a movie about one of the most beloved child characters ever. But we can't say that because this movie was a travesty.
The twisting of the Cat in The Hat to a perverted, ill humored, chaos weaving creature that appeared to be ready to take a baseball bat to a small child, is unbelievable. The Cat making jokes about whores, and nearly giving a tongue bath to a garden hoe in the same 2-second bit? What were they thinking? Obviously they didn't think about much.
The movie would probably terrify most small children, whom you would have expected this movie to be targeted towards. This is not a movie to take the kids to or to show them on video/DVD. This movie should be shown in every film school in the world as a shining example of how to not make a child's storybook into a movie. I could say more but I'll give myself and ulcer and I'll need some Tums.
All I can say is this movie was pitiful. I'd rather watch Leonard Part 6 again instead of this garbage.
Rude Boy: The Jamaican Don (2003)
Vaguely Interesting Almost Laughable Bad Movie
This is one of those movies begging to be shown late at night on the USA Network. Besides the plot with a lot of potential and the translation of Jamaican slang English using subtitles, there wasn't much left to talk about in this movie. I can't honestly with a clear conscience recommend this movie, even as a video. If you really have to see this movie, wait until it hits cable, otherwise its not worth it. I was watching this movie and I watched my watch equally as much.
The plot had more holes than a pound of Swiss cheese and wasn't at all surprising. The soundtrack was spotty and bad. The scene cuts made you think they spliced out the TV commercials (maybe they saw the script and just planned ahead. The acting was grade "C" at best. The only got you might recognize is Michael Taliferro, who played Emerald in "You Got Served". Although you might think its double vision when you see the character he plays in this movie.
I really hope this was a low budget flick, because if it wasn't someone who wasn't in the movie got robbed. Don't waste any money if this ever makes it to a theatre or video. Just wait in and see if it hits cable - expect it around 3 am or 4 am.
My Life Without Me (2003)
Sad and Subtly Intense Movie (Spoilers)
A sad and poignant movie about a young mother (Sarah Polley) who suddenly finds out that she has a terminal case of cancer that will consume her within two to three months. Realizing that her life as she knows it will never be the same she embarks alone on the journey to the end of her life, trying to simultaneously live during what time she has left, tie up any lose ends in her own life, and hope to make preparations to enable everyone else's life to go on without her. Polley is impressive in her role as Ann, bringing depth and powerful emotion to the character
The movie is done in the perspective of a first person monologue with everything being viewed from the eyes of Ann (Sarah Polley), with her own accompanying narration at times. The movie doesn't focus on her plight from a medical perspective or one of suffering, but as one of a person coming to grips with the one thing that life has in store for every single living person - dying. But the film also serves as a reminder that if we don't open our eyes and look around we may miss life because we thought we would live forever.
The movie has excellent supporting performances from Mark Ruffalo, Deborah Harry, Julian Richings, and, briefly, Leonor Watling. Mark Ruffalo's performance is a strong statement about how good of an actor he is, and the range of roles he can do, especially when you compare this to his role in "In the Cut". This movie won't get the hype that one got, but this film, in my opinion, is by far the better of the two for Ruffalo. I find something more impressive about Ruffalo every time I see him perform.
Scott Speedman's role, as Ann's husband Don, I felt was very underutilized and minimal almost designed to make Don's character kind of fade into the background to as not overshadow Polley's role and the particulars of her bond with her daughters. Whether that was by design or accident, only the director can say.
It is an excellent movie that I felt was very well done. It's a movie that can be analyzed so many different ways. I am certain that some people will agree and disagree with my comments, as is their right. But I recommend this movie if you like strong, well-acted movies with realistic tendencies.
You Got Served (2004)
This is not a movie that one is going to give awards or kudos to for its acting or its storyline. But the music and the dancing is another story. I like what I felt was a blend of old school and new school hip-hop and pop music to make a very interesting and enjoyable soundtrack. The dancing in my opinion was very entertaining and off the hook.
Do not go to the theater to watch this movie. Its not worth the $10. But if you're a hip-hop and/or street/break dancing fan this movie is definitely one worth renting. Its not a movie that I am likely to make it a point to go out and see again, but once it hits cable I wouldn't be surprised to find many channel surfers stopping in to check out the arsenal of dances moves this movie unloads. Feel free to enjoy this movie for what it is - one big hip-hop house song and dance show.
In the Cut (2003)
Doesn't Make the Cut
This movie just wanted to be so much more, but failed. It wasn't terribly suspenseful. The acting was average. The sub plots were too under the radar. The story was jerky at best, just jumping around from scene to scene without any kind of really smooth transition from one to the next. It did not flow well.
Hopefully the next movie Mark Ruffalo does will be something worthwhile for talent like his. His performance was good considering what he was given to work with, but the story needed more work to allow him to give the character the depth and development it deserved. One has to wonder what was cut out of this movie, based upon some of the dialogue that does occur in this film between Ruffalo's and Ryan's characters.
It gave Meg Ryan a new direction for the first time in a long time. She definitely wasn't playing your every woman or girl next door type in this movie. She showed more skin (assuming they didn't use computer replacement or a body double) then I ever thought we would see. It felt almost ala Angie Dickinson in "Dressed To Kill" except, that was a much much better movie.
Lots of talent. Plenty of potential. But, it didn't make the cut unless you like sleazy, boring, want-to-be thriller movies.
Raising Victor Vargas (2002)
Cinema Captures Reality
While the story is fiction, the feeling and appearance of this movie is documentary like in its gritty reality. If the movie had make-up artists and wardrobe consultants they should get many kudos for making up believe in the reality of what the movie contains. The apartments, the people, and the scenes are authentic. There is no attempt to brush away stereo-types about cultures or lifestyles. If you let yourself you can really feel like you're there with these awkward adolescent characters who are struggling to find themselves and someone to trust in the harsh reality of the world. Its a good solid movie to be appreciated for how it depicts life as it really is for many people. Its a movie you have to see to really understand. It doesn't go for the hard shock values of "Kids", but it makes you feel that you are walking right down the street in your own sneakers feeling the pebbles on the asphalt underneath your feet and the grit under your finger nails.
Intolerable Cruelty (2003)
Light Aimless Comedy
George Clooney and Catherine Zeta-Jones take us on a humorous parody about gold-digging wives, divorce lawyers, and the commercialization of marriage. The movie is somewhat under-developed in my opinion with a thinly disguised plot that manages to barely keep itself together throughout the course of the movie.
It seems like the movie either needed to be longer or the scenes shorter and less drawn out. I definitely felt some lag time during some of the scenes. There was something un-cohesive about the finished product that I couldn't quite put my finger on.
The dialogue isn't bad and I think Clooney and Jones were excellent, taking into consideration what they had to work with. There were entertaining supporting cameos from Cedric the Entertainer, Geoffrey Rush, and Edward Herrmann. And the movie had too much ham support from Paul Adelstein.
When its all said and done its a film good for a few laughs, Clooney fans, Jones fans, and for killing a couple hours when you have the time.
Excellently Brutal Yet Amusing Movie (Spoilers)
Forget everything you know about American Psycho. The only tie in is the character of Patrick Bateman, but it is enough to get the plot over from one movie to the other. I wouldn't truly call this a sequel, since its not a return of the main character reprising a role, but more like a spin off.
Mila Kunis excellently portrays Rachael (Newman we discover isn't her real last name, but her dinner with her parents confirms that her name is Rachael), a methodical, sophisticated, and cold-blooded serial killer. She goes about her work like a kid in a candy store. Her first person narrations are amusing and twisted just like her character.
She does make the movie work. The way she kills with a sparkle in her eye and the wrap-up in the end is awesome and entertaining. Predictable to an extent, but you really don't have the clues know about it until the very end.
The movie, I feel, is intriguing, amusing, and good entertainment from start to finish. Its worth a look if you have the time.
Storm of the Century (1999)
Sad, Sick, Twisted Story
Sad. Sick. Twisted. Not anything unusual for Stephen King. This is the story of on 99% honest and 100% good man's struggle to save his town and their children. Mike Anderson (Timothy Daly) is the constable of a small town on an island off the coast of Maine. This movie is the story of his attempt to save the town from a mysterious and supernatural stranger who appears in their midst in the middle of the "Storm of the Century". Sadly, the town is full of corrupt, cowardly, and weak-willed people, making the task that much more daunting and impossible. You will watch as Mike Anderson throughout the movie tries to do that which is right and proves that he was the only strong willed and honest person within that town. But it is to no avail, as in the end Mike Anderson loses that which matters to him most as the town caves in to the strangers demands and intimidation. Its a well produced, yet horrible story, with a very dark and sad feeling that makes your blood boil in the end, because the people of this town are so astoundingly pathetic, corrupt, and pitiful.
Shattered Glass (2003)
The Catch Me If You Can of Journalism (Possible Spoilers)
This is the story of Stephen Glass (Christensen) who concocted his own rise and fall in the world of journalism while writing for the New Republic. Watching this movie without any knowledge of the real story makes it that much better. You think you are watching the story of a young journalist out to get the new editor, Chuck Lane (Sarsgaard), of the New Republic back for the firing of the old editor, whereas it actually ends up being the opposite. The new editor is the one who finally catches on to Stephen Glass' false stories because of the investigative staff over at Forbes.com.
There is a particular scene in the movie where Michael Kelly (Azaria) does a fact check on one of the stories written by Glass and it seems like it is routine procedure. After you watch the conclusion of the movie and look back on that scene you wonder if Kelly had his doubts while he was the editor, but due to the loophole in the fact checking system (as noted in the movie) Glass hadn't made a big enough mistake to get himself caught.
It's a movie that can give one a lot to think about after you've watched it once or twice. As to whether or not Glass is sincere in his grief about lying or whether he was just trying to find a way to worm out of the whole thing without being penalized.
The movie features excellent lead performances by Peter Sarsgaard and Hayden Christensen, along with excellent support from Chloë Sevigny and Melanie Lynskey. It's an entertaining movie that doesn't go how you think it's going to go, unless you already know the real story. If you know the real story then you may have a different opinion on this film. Enjoy the movie.
Strange Sad Movie (Possible Spoilers)
I watched this movie and felt sadness throughout (I'm going to go watch something upbeat next). First its the story of a small sickly boy, dying, abandoned by his adoptive parents, alone in an orphanage, with only the priest (Nick Nolte) to keep him company as he slowly dies. On top of that the priest is telling the boy the story of a small Montana community that is being driven out of their homes to make way for a new dam. The movie even goes so far to show a father and son (Woods and Polish) digging up their mother so that she doesn't end up at the bottom of the lake.
On top of that the dying boy's imaginative feverish dreams are like something only dreamed up in a Tim Burton re-make of Brazil. The boy dreams of being an angle shot down out of the sky that had his wings and halo surgically removed. It's very bizarre to say the least, but the characters in these sequences (which include Edwards and Hannah) are intriguing as their actions and appearances have mystical and ethereal qualities.
Lastly, it shows how little a town can be had for as six men "move" everyone out of the town of Northfork for a measly acre and a half of lake front property (of which the bottom of that lake is to be the town of Northfork). It's a strong message and portrayal of how the history of America has really gone - big business and big politics holding hands squashing anyone getting in the way of what they consider "progress".
Sadly, no pun intended, this movie will most likely not change the way people act in the United States when "progress" attempts to do something detrimental to the environment or people just trying to eke out a living. They'll do what they've been doing for the last 50 years, change the channel when they see or hear something they don't like. Nice try. Good, but depressing movie.