Reviews written by registered user

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19 reviews in total 
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Brightness (1987)
9 out of 45 people found the following review useful:
Utter garbage...if you want a good African film, go see "Moolaadé" instead, 21 March 2009

It's surprising to see the number of rave reviews for this movie. As someone who is passionate and open-minded about all types of foreign cinema, I thought this movie was absolutely horrible with no redeeming value whatsoever.

Not only was it overly long, but it seemed like the director only had a budget of $10 to film what turned out to be nothing more than a meandering, incoherent, pointless piece of drivel masquerading as high art. This movie barely has any plot and NO characterization whatsoever. Sadly, the only memorable thing in the movie is scenes of actual animals being killed, which is terrible.

If, as other reviewers here have said this is how Africans see themselves, then is it any surprise African films don't get much exposure in the world market of cinema?

I also completely disagree with the reviewer who said that people with long attention spans will enjoy this movie. It's more like anybody who's accustomed to such basic cinematic elements as story or character development will not enjoy "Yeelen" as it features neither.

For a far superior film from a similar region in Africa, I would highly suggest Ousmane Sembene's "Moolaadé" from 2004. It too is filmed from an African perspective rather than a Western one...but it actually has a relevant, engaging storyline with fleshed-out characters for whom you actually care.

"Yeelen" on the other hand, is an excruciating, mind-numbing experience that I wouldn't even inflict on my worst enemy. It's as enjoyable as watching urine dry on a toilet seat.

Twists of Terror (1997) (TV)
1 out of 11 people found the following review useful:
The only "Terror" was that this garbage was even made., 12 December 2000

This is probably one of the stupidest films I've ever seen. The stories were predictable and unscary, and the acting was atrocious. That last story, which featured the nude scenes and the deranged female killer, was particularly stupid in spite of its attempts to be erotic. You'd be better off watching an hour's worth of McDonald's commercials than this piece of drivel.

"X-Men" (1992)
7 out of 12 people found the following review useful:
Vastly inferior to the WB Batman & Superman toons., 11 September 2000

I don't understand why so many people seem to think this cartoon was excellent. Sure, "X-Men" may have been better than most of the other Marvel hero cartoons (e.g. Fantastic Four, Iron Man, and the atrocious Avengers cartoon), but it doesn't even come close to rivalling the Batman or Superman shows.

The animation was pretty unsophisticated and the plots could be overly preachy and simplistic. Worst of all, the characterization was often ridiculous and inaccurate at times, like Storm's constant over-the-top declarations every time she used her powers (something that she NEVER does in the comic book); I won't even begin to discuss the cartoon's horrific portrayal of the Canadian super-team Alpha Flight. The only good thing was that the show utilized many talented Canadian actors like Cedric Smith (Professor X) and Camilla Scott (Lilandra).

Then of course, there was the way in which the continuity was altered. I understand the difficulty of keeping everything exactly the way it is in the comic but some of the changes seemed drastic and utterly pointless. For example, why were Banshee and Black Tom Cassidy portrayed as brothers (in the comic, they're cousins), and why was Banshee the older one when the exact opposite is true. As well, what was the point of saying that characters like Bishop, Nightcrawler, Dazzler, Archangel, Havok, Banshee, Psylocke, and Colossus had never been members of the X-Men? You could simply have said they were reserve members! These needless alterations are extremely insulting to comic fans like myself. The only storylines that were reasonably adapted were "The Phoenix Saga" and the subsequent "Dark Phoenix Saga".

For the most part, the "Batman" and "Superman" cartoons are superior because they don't dumb down to viewers; in other words, adults can enjoy just as much as kids. "X-Men" on the other hand, is strictly kiddie fare. If you want to watch a better animated Marvel cartoon that's a little more consistent to the comic, watch the earlier seasons of Fox's "Spider-Man".

1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Highly intelligent and vastly underrated., 6 September 2000

I think the main reason why most people didn't like "The Thirteenth Floor" was because it lacked the frenetic action sequences found in "The Matrix" (which was also an excellent film). In truth though, the plot for "The Thirteenth Floor" is stronger, much more thought-provoking, and more suspenseful...not something you'd expect from Roland Emmerich, one half of the duo that did such mindless Hollywood fare as "Godzilla" or "Independence Day". I guess we know where all the talent was in that partnership...

I really enjoyed the plot twists and the way in which you had to figure out what was real and what wasn't. All of the actors were excellent, especially Craig Bierko and Vincent D'Onofrio. I was also impressed with the look and feel of the 1940s sequences...very film noirish.

This film may not be pretentious artsy-fartsy flick like David Cronenberg's "eXistenZ" nor an action-packed blockbuster like "The Matrix", but it's still an intelligent, well-written film for anyone into sci-fi. 10 out of 10.

Bang (1995)
3 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
Waste of time., 5 September 2000

The only memorable things about "Bang" is that it features a female Asian protagonist in a non-stereotypical role and its use of cinema verite techniques. That said, the movie meanders about without any sort of coherent plot or message. At times, I felt as if the filmmaker was making the story up as he was filming it.

Essentially "Bang" is all flash and no substance.

4 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
Laughable camp fest masquerading as high art., 3 September 2000

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This adaptation of Mary Shelley's "Frankenstein" was just as ridiculous if not worse than the original 1940s Hollywood flick with Boris Karloff. Aside from the over-the-top acting, atrocious dialogue ("Brother and sister no husband and wife..."), and an utter disregard for the original plotline of the novel, I guess the visual effects and scenery weren't too least when Kenneth Brannagh wasn't chewing it up! De Niro's performance wasn't too bad either.

Many of the changes in the story seemed to make little sense (WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD). For example, when Frankenstein resurrects Elizabeth, why did he have to cannibalize parts from Justine's body...couldn't he have simply removed the heart as that was all he needed to revive her? As well, how was Elizabeth able to set herself on fire or the rest of the house for that matter? I thought her body would still be damp from the resurrection process?

Even Mel Brooks' "Young Frankenstein" can be considered a better adaptation of the novel than this godawful, self-indulgent piece of tripe. A 1 out of 10 rating, out of pity for those involved.

0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
"Lexx" done right., 31 August 2000

"Cleopatra 2525" is not the most intelligent sci-fi show, and would never win an Emmy, but it's still enjoyable enough to watch when nothing else is on. It's nowhere as stupid as "V.I.P." (with its Baywatch-esque montage sequences), and the characters are intentionally tongue-in-cheek without being too ridiculous or unbelievable.

"Star Trek" and "X-Files" it ain't but that's okay..."Cleopatra 2525" supposed to be mindless fun. Plus, what's wrong with having a bunch of strong, gorgeous females (except for Jennifer Sky, who's hillarious in the lead role) running around blowing up evil cyborgs?

I get the impression that some of the people who hate this show (as well as "Xena" or "Hercules") also enjoy watching campy, nonsensical excrement like "Lexx: The Series". At least "Cleopatra" has stories that most people can understand and/or enjoy!

1 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
More like Young Schlock Holmes, 29 August 2000

A very disappointing effort from Stephen Spielberg. While the premise for "Young Sherlock Holmes" is interesting, the film fails to live up to its potential. It seems like too much time and effort was spent on the special effects and costumes rather than on developing characterization and plot. The acting was pretty good but I found Elizabeth's death near the end of the film to be over-the-top and rather pointless.

Overall, this movie was better than Spielberg's "Always" (a truly horrendous film) but definitely not one of his most memorable.

1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Too long and felt like a prequel to something bigger., 29 August 2000

Compared to "The Stand" and "The Shining" (both of which I thought were excellent), "Storm of the Century" wasn't bad but it also wasn't King's best in terms of mini-series or story. I found the premise and the character of Linoge to be intriguing, but the ending was a major disappointment. I would also have liked to have learned more about Linoge's background (e.g. is Linoge supposed to be the Biblical demon Legion?).

I agree with the person who said in their IMDB review that the story lacked any sort of "good vs. evil" conflict, as Linoge was virtually omnipotent and therefore no real attempt was made to stop him - to me, the fact that he was not immortal implied that he could still be defeated or even killed in one way or another. Overall, this sense of hopeless inevitability where evil triumphs strongly contradicts the tone of other epic King stories like "It" or "The Stand", where ordinary individuals manage to overcome seemingly undefeatable evils.

While I'm sure King probably intended for this to be a sort of morality play, he could have made this entire movie the first half of a greater, with the second half involving Tim Daly's character pursuing Linoge for an ultimate confrontation.

12 out of 13 people found the following review useful:
One of the best cartoons of all time., 28 August 2000

As I had watched a few episodes of the original Jonny Quest cartoon and had liked them, I decided to give this new series a try. I was completely blown away by the quality of "The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest". The stories were intelligent and interesting, while the characters were totally believable and likeable. This is one of the few shows that does not adhere to any tired cliches commonly found in other children's toons and does not "dumb down" to viewers. I disagree with some fans of the original series who dislike newer characters like Jessie Bannon. Jessie is an excellent role model for young girls because she is strong, assertive, intelligent, and Jonny and Hadji's equal instead of the stereotypical female "airhead" sidekick or "damsel in distress".

This cartoon ranks up there with other smartly-written children's cartoons like WB's Batman, Batman Beyond, and Superman animated series, The Tick, Power Puff Girls, and Transformers: Beast Machines. It's too bad that something like "Real Adventures of Jonny Quest" would not survive in today's TV market.

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