Reviews written by registered user

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11 reviews in total 
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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Outstanding film, but I still believe in the death penalty, 8 September 2002

Dead Man Walking is an excellent film, mainly due to the performances of its cast. Susan Sarandon and Sean Penn are simply fantastic as Sister Helen Prejean and the death row inmate to whom she offers counseling. I was also impressed by the actors playing the parents of the couple murdered by the prisoner and his cohort in crime.

Overall director Tim Robbins seemed to address the issue of the death penalty in an even-handed way, but I take issue with Sister Helen's strongly-held belief that "killing to prove that killing is wrong is wrong." To me, the larger, more important issue is keeping the innocent safe from predation by vicious killers.

Vanishing Act (1986) (TV)
3 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
Good cast can't overcome bad script, 8 September 2002

Elliot Gould, Fred Gwynne, Mike Farrell and Margot Kidder turn in reasonably good performances but the script is the factor that kills this TV movie. Farrell leads as a man whose wife went missing on their honeymoon. Elliot Gould holds his own as a cop transplanted from the Bronx to the Rocky Mountain boonies. The identity of the characters played by Margot Kidder and Fred Gwynne figure heavily into the mystery (such as it is) so I won't go into detail here.

This is not a total disaster -- it is watchable and somewhat interesting. Ultimately, though, it falls apart under the weight of the inferior script.

1 out of 17 people found the following review useful:
worse than mediocre, 9 October 2001

This so-called comedy is a waste of time for all involved. The assembled cast is certainly capable of better things, but the writing is subpar and the direction is inferior to that of many tv shows.

The plot, which consists of a number of people seeking a treasure, has been done many times, nearly all of them better. This is a project that says nothing and goes nowhere. Slowly.

42 Up (1998) (TV)
5 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
A phenomenal work, 27 August 2001

One of the most important ongoing social and cultural projects of our time, this series of films has documented the lives of a number of people from the age of seven up. Currently the participants are in their mid-forties, now in a position to reflect on the past as well as to speculate about their future from a reasonably well-informed perspective. It is truly fascinating to get even this brief glimpse of how these people have progressed through their lives, from the fresh enthusiasm of early childhood through the angst and pain of the teen years, then coping with the various ups and downs of adulthood. Many have children of their own; some have lost parents along the way. Most have remained in their native England, where social class is more of an issue than here in the States. Class struggle is a topic of discussion in the film, though touched upon rather briefly.

This reviewer has been watching Michael Apted's project for the past fourteen years and is approximately the same age as the participants, a fact which makes the film that much more involving. One feels a connection with these people. Reviewing these people's lives is much like looking back at one's own, which strengthens the feelings of warmth and familiarity that this film evokes.

Mr. Apted has done an excellent job with these films and the reviewer wishes to express appreciation to him as well as to the interviewees.

1 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Pretty pathetic, 21 August 2001

Although I am a woman with a giant-sized crush on Paul Wight, I must say that this is a remarkably poor excuse for a feature film, even a B- one such as this. The plot is utterly ridiculous, the writing is wretched and the acting is truly awful. If the direction had been any less inept, this film might have come across as agreeably silly; unfortunately this is not the case. Not worth the time it takes to watch it with (for me) the sole exception of Paul Wight's all too brief appearance.

Live Aid (1985) (TV)
7 out of 7 people found the following review useful:
The best concert I ever saw, 19 June 2001

I happened to be in England at the time of this concert and was able to buy a ticket. I got there early and took a place on the field. The crowd was different than at an American concert -- mellower and nicer overall. Once U2 came onstage, though, things changed. The crowd started to move toward the stage in massive wave-like surges. It was a little anxiety-provoking, but nobody got hurt that I could see.

The line-up was nothing short of spectacular and I was particularly happy to see The Who, David Bowie, Sting, Queen and Paul McCartney. This was in Paul's anxious phase, after John was killed; Paul only did one song and seemed to be hiding behind the piano. The surprise stand-out act of the day for me was Queen. Freddy Mercury really knew how to work the crowd and he had 50,000 people (or whatever) in the palm of his hand.

Evolution (2001)
Funny and fairly good, 10 June 2001

Ivan Reitman's most recent outing clearly reminds us of his Ghostbusters films, but with plot holes you could drive a fire truck through. It is also slightly reminiscent of Galaxy Quest, but lacks the warmth and character development of that often-underrated film.

David Duchovny, Orlando Jones and Julienne Moore put a fair amount of effort into their portrayals of goofy but well-meaning scientists, and it seems like they had a good time in the making of this film. This is a lightweight sci-fi romp, and any attempt to make it into anything more will result in disappointment.

The effects carry the biggest load here and they are plentiful and done well. Representing many evolving forms of alien life come to earth, the creatures are interesting, cute, funny and scary in varying ways. Don't expect too much and you should find this outing reasonably enjoyable.

18 out of 20 people found the following review useful:
Remarkably lovely, 8 April 2001

This is an excellent adaptation of the famous children's book by Frances Hodgson Burnett. Margaret O'Brien shines as Mary Lennox, a British girl orphaned in India and sent to live with her nearest relative, a gruff reclusive uncle (Herbert Marshall). A very young Dean Stockwell is quite good as Mary's cousin Colin. The interaction between these children and a third, a local boy named Dickon (Brian Roper) is handled well. The story, told in a straightforward manner is warm and touching, with a number of humorous moments. Highly recommended.

Pygmalion (1983) (TV)
2 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
A classic play, decently done., 17 March 2001

Peter O'Toole brings a different tone to the role of Henry Higgins than did Rex Harrison, the actor most commonly associated with the noted British linguist. O'Toole's talent is as undeniable and obvious as ever, but his performance is much wilder and rougher around the edges than Harrison's was. Unfortunately, Margot Kidder was not up to the role of Eliza Doolittle and the only thing worse than her "cultured" English is the lower-class Cockney dialect used early on. Frances Hyland stands out as Mrs. Higgins, Henry's mother, but the few other parts are given short shrift and are eminently forgettable.

Alan Cooke's direction is quite capable for a television production. Overall this version stands on it's own adequately enough, but it pales in comparison to the film "My Fair Lady."

18 out of 20 people found the following review useful:
Stays funny, even in milk, 30 December 2000

Clever writing, able direction and a stellar cast make this film a modern classic that stands up to multiple viewings. Tracey Ullman and Joan Plowright star as Rosalie Boca and her mother Nadja, both so furious at the infidelity of Rosalie's husband Joey (Kevin Kline) that they decide to kill him. The ensuing misadventures are VERY funny, particularly the attempts by hired hit-men Harlan and Marlon James, not-too-bright cousins played by William Hurt and Keanu Reeves.

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