Reviews written by registered user
robertmfreeman

Send an IMDb private message to this author or view their message board profile.

Page 1 of 2:[1] [2] [Next]
13 reviews in total 
Index | Alphabetical | Chronological | Useful

Rabbits (2002)
It's a sitcom, 22 April 2010
9/10

As far as I can see, it's that simple. 'Rabbits' is a sitcom. It's not a sitcom in the traditional sense, or any normal sense for that matter, but it's a sitcom from David Lynch's point of view.

One recurring theme in all David Lynch movies is that he has a very uncompromising vision. Whatever he wants on the screen is what's ultimately on the screen, regardless of whether it's commercially viable or not.

'Rabbits' is simply what David Lynch sees when he watches a sitcom. He sees animals placed in predetermined roles, forced to forgo any passion or meaning, instead focusing on hollow, meaningless lines of dialog, and cyclical patterns of behavior.

Why does the laugh track play when nothing funny happens? Perhaps David Lynch is asking the same question. He watches a sitcom, and after a character says something that didn't seem funny at all, the audience erupts with laughter. The humor and situation are forced onto the characters and setting. It wasn't a joke because it was funny, it was a joke because the laugh track played.

So what's the meaning? I don't think there is one, and that's the point. In order for there to be meaning, the rabbits would need to have some sort of freedom, or control over their situation, and they have none. They're in a situational comedy, and thus enslaved by their 'situation'.

2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Not Since the movie Creeping Terror..., 4 February 2010
5/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Let me assure you, I love watching bad movies, especially sleazy bad movies. As a pseudo-intellectual movie snob, nothing's more fun than 'slumming it' after watching a Coen brothers masterpiece.

All that said, I can't enjoy this movie. It's not the graphic nature of the film, as the psychotic maniac 'Al' is hilarious in his attempts to appear menacing, especially while wearing his HUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGE sunglasses. He's equal parts funny and sleazy, making him a modern day 'Mack the Knife'.

So why can I only give the movie a 5/10? Because with the sole exception of 'Creeping Terror', there has never been a movie where the victims in the film did less to save themselves. It goes beyond cowering in fear, and even stupidity. Hell, even the female equivalents of Forrest Gump would've known enough to all run away simultaneously in opposite directions.

It doesn't matter if the villains are fully distracted, completely stoned, unarmed, or even asleep, the women in the film literally do nothing to escape. Hell, the villains didn't even tie them up! The villains don't even have guns or anything, so if every girl grabbed a large wooden stick, that'd pretty much be it for the bad guys.

If you want to see a movie where a group of young women hang around, slightly bored, patiently waiting to each be raped and killed, then this is the movie for you.

As for me, it's no surprise that the movie fails to be good, but it's shocking that it even fails as sleaze.

0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Effective Psychological Thriller, 7 July 2009
9/10

Without giving anything away, I felt 'The Good Son' was a very effective and subtle psychological thriller. It was very interesting to see a modern thriller that felt more like a classic Hitchcock tale than 'Die Hard'.

The Good Son has very little violence directly on the screen, and is far more interested in implying danger and violence, which is ultimately far more effective. No matter how graphic a scene is, it's never quite as scary or thrilling as what 'could' be. By merely implying the violence, and hiding it away from the audience, we feel just as trapped and helpless as the main star.

In the end, The Good Son was quite impressive, and although it's not always realistic, neither was Psycho, and when you consider the fact that all the main actors are children, it's downright impressive how good a performance each of them brought to this competent thriller.

2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
A very funny comedian in a very mediocre show, 2 June 2009
7/10

Despite popular belief, this show was not cut short by Sam Kinison's death. He died in 1992, and the show was canceled after only 7 episodes in 1991.

No matter how much you like Sam Kinison (and I do), there's really no excusing the show. Despite his talent and ability to work in 'cleaned up' roles quite well, Sam Kinison could not make up for the incredibly mediocre premise and writing for the show.

Ironically, the exact same premise was later ripped off, with Bobcat Goldwait as the 'inner voice' in the show Unhappily Ever After, which was a hit, running for 100 episodes. Personally, I thought Charlie Hoover was funnier.

0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
A High Tech Saturday Morning Cartoon, 28 May 2009
5/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Movies that include a lot of CGI look stupid.

There, I said it.

It's one thing to use CGI to enhance a shot, or to add in something more or less impossible to replicate with normal special effects, but when I see a CGI ship colliding into a CGI bridge, resulting in a CGI explosion, all set in front of a CGI background, I just think: "It's amazing how much effort they went through to bore me." It's like Transformers, the latest Indiana Jones, Wolverine, all the new Star Wars, the last two Matrix movies, and so many others: it's just not convincing! There's no point in the movie where I'm lost in the drama and moment, because I'm well aware at all times that these are simply high tech cartoons. (although I did like Transformers and Crystal Skull, just not for the special effects) Without any really likable characters, a serious plot, and the undeniable fact that John Conner has to survive, I'd call this movie all but worthless.

What makes it worse is the fact that Star Trek, that came out right before it, was magnificent, and the CGI was mostly used in the space scenes (where it was relatively effective), and the rest of the movie was based upon a strong plot and great character development.

In contrast, Terminator: Salvation is high priced garbage.

3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Clive Barker is the Creepiest Man Alive, 16 May 2009
9/10

To sum up the movie, overall: Rawhead Rex is a monster that hunts and devours young boys, stopping only to violate women, and be worshipped as a God. How does he react to the worship? He pisses over his followers, which they eagerly accept as a blessing from their God.

This movie is one of the creepiest and most disturbing ever made, and it doesn't matter how cheesy the makeup is. It's creepy and disturbing for the same reason all of Clive Barker's stories are: it's as much sexual fantasy as it is horror.

Clive Barker is the creepy old man that sits on his porch all day, asking the young boys who pass if they'd like to sit on his lap and hear a scary story. We're too young to realize why these stories include so much torture and sado-masochistic imagery, and we understand even less why the storyteller seems so excited as he tells it, made all the more excited by the young listener's fear. As a straight, relatively well adjusted man, these dark dreams are all the more chilling, especially at a young age, when everything is already so confusing. Ultimately, no Clive Barker movie is ever as scary or disturbing as the concept itself, and no movie studio will allow the story to be as dark and horrifying as Clive Barker wants it to be.

That's why Clive Barker's stories are so great. It's not really about selling books. It's about satisfying dark urges, and terrifying young boys.

What I'm getting at is that it doesn't matter if Rawhead Rex looks scary. It's what he does, and the mere concept of his existence that is both terrifying and disturbing, made all the more terrifying when you're young, because let's face it: If Clive Barker dreamed of hunting and devouring young boys, then plenty of others have dreamed it to...and perhaps they aren't as willing as Clive is to merely allow his dark dreams to remain a fantasy.

Like it or laugh at it, the story of Rawhead Rex is a dark reflection of the author's soul, and it is that reflection which is truly horrifying.

4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
Well Crafted and Creatively Executed Sleaze, 6 March 2009
9/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I honestly expected this movie to be pure trash, and make no mistake, this movie was definitely sleazy, often to the point of revulsion.

What I didn't expect was for the movie to be worthwhile otherwise. The sleaze actually works well within the Jekyll and Hyde mythos, as none of the crimes committed in the movie are beyond Hyde in any of his incarnations. I've definitely seen Hyde hammed up far worse in other movies and stage performances.

So why cling to the unnecessary sleaze? I think the director felt it wouldn't be commercially viable without it, and unfortunately, he was probably right.

This version of Hyde is closer to what Stevenson originally envisioned, a barbaric and small minded monster, that only cares about satisfying his base impulses, and nothing else. He can't concentrate long enough to form a plan or vendetta. He's a savage, primitive monster, through and through.

What separates this version from others is its unnecessarily over the top sexual violence, a few VERY graphic scenes, and the fact (SPOILER COMING) that his 'bride to be' joins him in his debauchery at the end, becoming a Hyde-like monster herself.

She's actually far more interesting than Hyde, because instead of acting like a basic sex fiend, she delves headfirst into nihilism, as does the film as a whole. It's fascinating to see a movie shift tones from 'shock horror' to complete anarchy. The carnage isn't as shocking as it is unexpected, and the actors really dive into it head first. Makes you wonder if it was only their 'characters' who were reveling in the destruction.

The ending is the best part of the movie, as the 'happy couple' destroy the entire house and everyone inside it, in a fit of violence, fire, and self gratification.

It ain't pretty, but I have to admit, it was original.

2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
The Bond Identity, 24 November 2008
8/10

Quantum of Solace starts off on my bad side just because of the name, which roughly translates to 'Moment of Silence'. Couldn't they just have called it that? Sure, they were using an Ian Fleming title, but it isn't based on one of his stories, especially not the original 'Quantum of Solace'.

This might be the reason the movie doesn't really feel like a James Bond film. Instead, it just feels like a Hollywood sequel, no different in spirit then Men in Black 2, and like so many sequels, it commits the cardinal sin of leaving out most of the things that made the original great. There's no subtlety, it adds virtually nothing to the ongoing plot, and there really isn't any romance. It's just Bond running around, being Jason Bourne.

Yes, you can argue that the Bourne series borrowed its theme and style originally from James Bond, but Quantum doesn't just use the style, it copies scenes directly from Bourne movies. The shaky car chase at the beginning of Quantum is directly out of the second Bourne movie, and the chase across the rooftops in the European village is shamelessly stolen directly out of the third Bourne movie, complete with our hero's detours directly through apartments. There's a difference between using similar, styles and directly stealing. Quantum crosses that line.

All that aside, it isn't a bad movie, it's just a disappointing one. Daniel Craig makes the movie worth watching by playing Bond as more vulnerable, more human, and ultimately, more impressive. There are many Bonds that can convince me that they're the greatest spy in the world, but only Daniel Craig's Bond has convinced me that he's actually willing to die for something, even if it's just to avenge the death of the woman he loves.

I also have to give credit to Mathieu Amalric for a very talented and unique performance as the villain. Instead of appearing larger than life, or ridiculously evil, he's presented to be just as human as Bond, only without Bond's morals or convictions. When first introduced, I assumed he'd be a minor villain, as he seemed a little pathetic, but watching him dance around his less savvy and political opponents proved very interesting. Instead of a mad villain with a missile pointed at London, we have a subtle, political monster, motivated only by greed, who knows exactly how to work the system. I, for one, was impressed.

All in all, Quantum of Solace isn't the best nor worst James Bond movie, but it fails to live up to Casino Royale, or even stay within the same genre. Quantum is basically a brainless action thriller with a dynamite cast, and whether or not you'll be disappointed all depends on what you expect to see. Personally, I would've preferred it if they used the exact same cast, only with a different script.

4 out of 7 people found the following review useful:
Much better than people remember, 5 January 2008
8/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I like Howard the Duck. I'm not saying I love the movie. I don't own a copy, and have no real desire to own one. However, if it was on television, I'd watch it. If it was chopped up into several pieces and put on online, I'd check it out. If I already picked out two movies for a 3 DVDs for $5 special, and I saw 'Howard the Duck' in there, I'd grab it.

Howard the Duck has many flaws, but at no point is it annoying to me. The 'duck' jokes aren't funny, admittedly, but the atmosphere is interesting, Howard himself is funny, and the movie is pure 80's. Also, Lea Thompson is HOT. Again, there are plenty of later movies where you can see her naked, but she was at her peak (and in her underwear) in Howard the Duck.

Character actor Chip Zien, the voice of Howard, pulls off the performance with genuine charm, and Tim Robbins is delightfully goofy. To add to it, almost no one in the city really cares that Howard is a Duck. He spooks some, but for the most part they just ignore the alien wandering through their city, and rather than it being unbelievable, it comes off as delightful satire.

Just as you think things are wrapping up, the movie becomes ridiculously epic, giant killer aliens show up, and Jeffrey Jones is really funny as the 'possessed' scientist. What can I say? The movie works for me.

The only creepy thing is that despite all of Lucas' special effects it's disappointing that they still had to use the 'midget in a costume' technique for all the scenes. Almost anything else would have been better. A guy in a full sized suit? A cartoon effect? Hell, the movie itself probably would have worked a LOT better as a cartoon, rather than live action.

Oh, and there's one other bad thing: the 111 minute run time. You can't tell me they couldn't chop 25 minutes out of that movie. Come on, the movie stars a small, talking duck.

Despite all that, it's an enjoyable movie. You might not be laughing at the parts they intend you to laugh at, but you'll be laughing, regardless.

5 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
Psychopathic Snobs, 9 November 2007
3/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This movie is mostly garbage. Granted, it's not completely garbage, but it's at least...90% garbage. I have several issues with this movie.

First of all, nothing in this movie is original. Everything you see in the film was already done in 'Clockwork Orange', reused in 'Natural Born Killers', and now presented in 'Doom Generation', only to be used again in 'The Devil's Rejects' later.

Second, while Clockwork Orange was a brilliant movie, and Natural Born Killers was at least very well made, Doom Generation is mindless dribble. If Dazed and Confused was written and directed by a 16 year old idiot, it would be this movie. Let's admit it, even those of you who like the movie only reference the ending, which was the movie's strongest point.

Third, the symbolism and metaphors were so obvious, it was retarded. Your average dog could have spotted them.

Fourth, just like Natural Born Killers, this movie misses the point. People desensitized to unrealistic violence, either through movies or video games, don't become desensitized to real violence. Although media and parent groups scream otherwise, people who watch violent movies and play violent video games are some of the least violent people in the world. The only people desensitized to real violence are people who are constantly subjected to real violence. Go to the middle east, and you'll see teenagers who are desensitized to violence. For a good movie about desensitization to violence, watch Taxi Driver, or Full Metal Jacket.

The true consequence of being desensitized to violence through movies or games, is that we forget what death really is. This doesn't translate into actual violence, just a lack of empathy for real victims, and a general detachment from reality.

Fifth, the movie tips its hand with the random, over the top sexuality and ridiculously immature gore. It claims to be a critique of bad exploitation movies, but in reality, it's just another exploitation movie, and not a very good one at that. Take the Asian convenience store scene. No slasher movie would ever put something that stupid in it. By sinking lower than their supposed target, they lost any chance at being considered credible.

Sixth, and most importantly, they're psychopathic snobs. The worst case of this is still The Devil's Rejects, but this movie takes a close second. Psychopathic snobbery follows this line of thinking: "I kill people on a whim, but it's okay because 'fill in the blank'." In Devil's Rejects, it's supposedly okay because they aren't hypocritical, or completely sexually depraved. In Natural Born Killers, it's okay because they were molested as children. Even in the Matrix series, they constantly cause the deaths of innocent people (especially during Neo's flight to save Trinity in the second movie, which had to have killed about a thousand people), but it's okay because they're rebels, and everyone else's life means nothing. In The Doom Generation, they're supposedly desensitized, and they cared about that dog, so it's okay for them to kill on a whim, or so the movie wants us to believe.

Psychopathic snobs live by the credo: 'It's okay to commit murder, rape and torture, because the victims don't count as real people.' This is actually what gives the ending its power. For in the ending, the tables are turned. Suddenly, they're attacked by other, stronger psychopathic snobs, you believe that the lives of the main characters mean nothing. For the first time, they get to experience what it means to be a victim, and be at the mercy of maniacs who consider them to be less than human. The main characters aren't any better or worse than the Neo Nazis of the ending. They just have different targets for their homicidal whims.

Good ending, but not enough to make up for the rest of the movie.


Page 1 of 2:[1] [2] [Next]