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40 reviews in total 
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Beowulf (2007)
6 out of 17 people found the following review useful:
Warning: IMAX 3-D made me nauseous, 14 November 2007

However, I loved the movie and the 3-D was 85% of what was enjoyable. I think a "flat" version would be flat.

Most of the excitement comes with the 3-D images coming at ya. I had to keep from reaching my hand up to touch the bubbles (or whatever) seemed to be floating in the air right in front of me.

After about 20 minute, I started to feel ooky, so took off my glasses and closed my eyes for a few minutes. Had to repeat this several times. But I'm proud to say I made it thru the 1:55 movie length without barfing.

It's now 2 hours since I left the theater and I'm still slightly nauseous.

However, other people weren't bothered. SO maybe it's just me -- or where I was sitting (last row, far right seat). I think you have to find out exactly where your head needs to be so you don't see double images -- then pin your head to the back of your seat and DON'T MOVE IT!

Another warning: it's pushing the limits for a PG-13 movie. For the timid or very young, it might be too much. Lots of limb-ripping, head-chomping, torso-goring and nudity.

Several children in our theater were crying. (At the sight of Angelina Jolie's 3-D boobies, perhaps!)

11 out of 39 people found the following review useful:
Amy Poehler & Will Arnett nearly steal the film, 28 March 2007

Real-life married couple Amy & Will shine as the villains you love to hate. (They don't actually exhibit "sexual friction as a brother & sister skating team", as I read somewhere. So relax.)

All the supporting comedy performers are great -- however Jon Heder just is not in the same acting league as the rest of them. (I kept thinking: "Hey, there's Rob Corddry. Now HE'D be great in this part. Or Owen Wilson. Or Jack Black.... Or.....")

But I guess they needed a flyweight actor that Will Ferrell could lift over his head. However, Jon does look dazzling in those skating costumes.

Will Ferrell does his usual great job, but the material is thin. (Like in his skating costume.)

These sure are two homely male leads. I have to wonder: Would two equally funny and average-looking women be given starring roles in a film? I think they'd be told to sit in the back of the bleachers for the crowd scenes.

(But enough of my bitter personal experiences in Hollywood!)

Oh and Pam from "The Office" is in the film. Sort of. She seems to be in Jon Heder's comedy acting league.

Look closely at the long shots in the skating climax. You can clearly see it is the skating doubles, not Will and Jon.

The film is good -- but not great. It seems to be missing something -- like an Act 2. The first half is chock full of laughs, but the second half is not so funny. Good thing the film is pretty short: 1:25.

Bridesmaids (2011/I)
14 out of 29 people found the following review useful:
Awful, 13 May 2011

And this movie was aimed at me -- I'm a woman and I'm into comedy. I expected to have a good time. I didn't. It just never got funny. A lot of "almost funny" scenes. A few chuckles. But we deserve better than that.

A great cast wasted. The heroine is unlikeable. I don't understand how you write a script for yourself and make yourself unlikeable from every aspect.

Her big "blow-up" scene (intended to be hilarious) just makes you cringe. Shut up and be gracious for your friend, the bride's, sake. Don't make it all about you.

The only actor who got good laughs from the audience was Melissa McCarthy ("Mike & Molly").

But her character is another head-scratcher. She seems to be a butch lesbian. Yet lusts after men. So many things just didn't make sense about this movie. And you get distracted thinking "Why does the Wisconsin highway patrol officer have a British accent?" "Is that rich lady a bitch or not?" "Why is that lesbian coming onto that man?" "Just what is the main character's problem? Is she mentally ill?" None of this is helpful to a comedy.

9 out of 19 people found the following review useful:
Geez, Lady -- you need AA, not a man, 12 July 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

So there's this shaky quaky single neurotic New York Gal -- she's aging! She must find a man! Now!

So she goes here and has a drink and there and has a drink and comes home and has a drink and goes out again and has a drink. Drink drink drinky drink drink. (Sometimes there's also pills.)

The film is mostly her staggering around looking like a hangover hag and boo-hooing about guys who don't stick around.

Uh, maybe guys don't want to get stuck with a neurotic drunk?

It's a very meandering film, with scenes that seem promising -- but abruptly end, without accomplishing anything.

It reminded me of another film by a another famous director's daughter -- "Lost in Translation". That film had Bill Murray to save it. He improvised all those funny lines and moments that you remember -- that made people think that was a great film. Otherwise it just meandered a lot.

I think Sophia Coppola and Zoe Cassavetes just transcribed some events in their lives and hoped it made a movie. I think an unknown would have no luck getting either of these scripts filmed.

Zoe must love "Before Sunset" -- because this movie ends with the EXACT same two last lines and just as abruptly.

68 out of 77 people found the following review useful:
Radiant!, 9 December 2006

Bring your Kleenex. Maybe it's just coz I'm female, or maybe it's coz my mother read this book to me when I was little -- but every time a new word appeared in that web -- tears rolled down my cheeks!

It's very charming. They have kept to the time frame of the book -- it looks like the 1930s-1950s. They haven't tried to "modernize" it with pop culture references and silly jokes like so many kids' movies nowadays do.

Fern isn't break dancing with the pig. (No, there are no musical numbers.)

Fart jokes were kept to a minimum. (I think they are required by law nowadays to put fart jokes in all children's entertainment.)

They didn't dumb down the lovely words E.B. White used -- Charlotte uses her grand language as she speaks to Wilbur and spins her webs.

I kept thinking of "Babe" at the start of the movie. A white runt pig saved. Similar barnyard companions. Even the voice of Wilbur sounds like the voice of Babe. (Even tho Babe was voiced by a 32 y.o. woman and Wilbur by a 9 y.o. boy!) But I think the writers of Babe must have been fans of the classic "Charlotte's Web".

Steve Buscemi as the voice of Templeton the Rat is just perfect. (Poor guy even has a rat-like face -- is that why they cast him?) And the CGI animation is flawless. You can't tell the animated animals from the real ones. Flawlessly blended.

That little pig is SO cute at the beginning -- I just wanted to watch him play in the mud for 10 minutes. (But no, they kept the story moving along.) They even tried to make the spider cute, but that's quite a challenge. Still Julia Roberts' soothing motherly voice helps. (Nevertheless, the little girl next to me climbed into her grandma's lap when the spider appeared.)

And Dakota Fanning, as always, is a darling.

So go -- and if you loved the book as a child, bring plenty of Kleenex!

16 out of 33 people found the following review useful:
Left me Nauseous & Headachey, 19 January 2008

I'm deducting 2 stars for how ill this movie made me.

Why did NO one warn me that the ENTIRE film was shaky, hand-held video? (I thought it would just be the opening party scene.)

"The Blair Witch Project" did the same thing to me.

THE X-FILES EXPLANATION: About 40 minutes into every X-Files episode, there was a kind of an explanation for that week's monster. (Something) might have happened to (create/release) this sort of a (monster/disease)!"

The same thing happens here 40 minutes in. Pay attention, cuz it's the only sort of explanation you're going to get.

(But I have a sneaking suspicion this is the monster that's been stomping around "Lost" island for the last few years!)

I'm left wondering:

Why does anyone live in Manhattan anymore? It's always being attacked by gigantic Godzilla-like monsters, Muslim extremists, tsunamis, aliens in spaceships, killer viruses, zombies, Donald Trump...

23 out of 51 people found the following review useful:
Moribund, 11 May 2012

Definition of Moribund: "In terminal decline; lacking vitality or vigor." That's this movie. Don't believe the trailers -- they made it look very witty and fast-paced. Instead it is slow and dull.

Why don't they get the people who make the trailers to make the movie? Trailers are always fast-paced and funny and make the movies look terrific. I think there are jokes in the trailers that are not IN this movie! Why would you remove jokes from a movie that has too few?

Johnny Depp tries his hardest, as he always does. But the script is just flat. Sad to see that Tim Burton has demoted his girlfriend, Helena Bonham Carter, to "older character lady" role. Women in their 20s get the romantic leads. (Is Johnny not aging?)

Also story steals a bit from Twilight. So we've seen it all before.

192 out of 238 people found the following review useful:
Nearly Died Laughing, 27 June 2007

I went to this screening expecting it to be a serious movie -- you don't expect to be laughing at a movie with both "Death" and "Funeral" in the title -- but this film was hilarious! It wasn't just me -- the theater was full of people screaming with laughter and clapping at various moments.

Alan Tudyk is hilarious every moment he is on screen. Finally this underrated actor has gotten a good-sized part where he can show off his comedy skills.

Most of the actors are British and I did not recognize them, but they were excellent.

One I recognized was Jane Asher (she was Paul McCartney's girlfriend in the 60s -- he shoulda married her -- she's still alive and she's not a gold-digger). She plays the very composed widow here. (Oddly she has fewer creases on her face than her middle-aged sons.)

This film reminded me a bit of "Four Weddings and a Funeral", but even more of those British madcap black comedies of the 60s with Alec Guinness or Peter Sellers.

Disturbia (2007)
12 out of 31 people found the following review useful:
If Nickelodeon remade "Rear Window", 3 April 2007

It would look just like this.

I think they should have given the writers of that film credit and not pretend this was an "original story".

First 3/4 moves at a verrrry leisurely pace. (A suspense film needs a zippier pace and more shocks.)

The bad guy behaves in an unbelievable way towards the end.

(Other reviewers said they saw boom mikes in the shots, but I didn't. Maybe they fixed that. Or I just look at the center of the screen at all times.)

The kids might enjoy this, but if you want to show them what a GREAT suspense film looks like, rent them "Rear Window".


It's sexy and seriously disturbing. (Hitchcock was a bit of a freak.)

Dreamgirls (2006)
1 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
Wowee Wowee Wow!, 8 December 2006

If you want a good time at the movies, go see Dreamgirls. Feet were tapping, heads were bobbing all throughout. (That's in the audience, I mean.) I saw the original cast on Broadway and as wonderful as that was, the movie version improves on it.

(And you can't say that about all movie musicals -- look at "The Producers". No, don't.)

There are wall to wall songs. Every frame is filled with wonderful things to see and hear.

Eddie Murphy and Jennifer Hudson blew me away (and I'm not easily impressed). This is the best role Eddie has ever had. When he first came out as the marcelled 50s soul singer, I had a brief flashback to the "In the Hot Tub - YOW!" sketch of his early SNL days when he was doing James Brown. But this role goes far beyond mere impersonation. He's a joy to watch every moment.

I can see the Academy Voters breathing a collective sigh of relief (from their elderly lungs as they take a hit off their oxygen masks): "Phfew!! At last! An easy choice for Best Picture Oscar!" Unlike last year: "Brokeback Mountain or Crash ... hmmm... errrmmm... Do we HAVE to pick one? Can't we just say there were several pretty good pictures this year?"

My only quibble is several of the songs sounded Show-Tuney when they ought to have sounded Motown-ey.

But I guess they felt they had to reproduce the original score exactly. But they could have made a few improvements there.

Also (OK, second quibble) -- occasionally they do that annoying thing that they do in musicals -- where people having a conversation suddenly starting singing to one another. It's fine when the song is being performed on stage by the Supremes -- uh, er, I mean -- "The Dreams" -- but when brother and sister are talking backstage and suddenly burst into song, well...

And (OK, third quibble) they could have used a few moments of black screen after Jennifer Hudson finishes her amazing rendition of "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going", coz in the Broadway theater the audience rose to its feet and applauded (the original performer) for 3 minutes. But in the movie they just immediately cut to another scene. We need a moment to take in such an astounding performance.

But these are small quibbles and I got past them pretty easily because this whole movie is just so darn enjoyable.

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