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shawny11_2001

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36 reviews in total 
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300 (2006)
7 out of 15 people found the following review useful:
The New Age of War Movies, 12 March 2007
9/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

It did not start with "Saving Private Ryan" & the motto "War is Hell." The new age for war movies started with "300" and "Why we fight." No, this isn't a recruitment movie for the armed forces. Surprisingly, this movie is about the reason for going to war, what would you lay your life down for, and ultimately about the sacrifices that have to be made for victory. But if you walked out of the movie saying "Gosh, that was really violent," you completely missed the point of the movie and should be kept from breeding.

Acting - Gerard Butler as Leonidas is at his best in this movie. No one else could deliver a corny line (about fighting for too long and how kneeling would hurt) any better. It was said with kingly charisma. The other standout was Lena Headly as Queen Gorgo. It's not often you see a strong woman character in a primarily male cast. All the others played their parts well, as Spartan soldiers willing to die.

Music - The perfect blend of metal and symphony but separated. Tyler Bates did a wonderful job. And there's nothing better than watching a band of angry Spartans marching towards the Persians with a heavy metal guitar-riff going.

SFX - Absolutely fantastic, except for Xerxes towering over Leonidas. That was very bad, but overall, the CGI and blue-screen work was fantastic. The stylized feel of the movie was brought out through this technique, and gave it a true comic-book feeling, even moreso than Sin City.

Overall - 9 out of 10. For the depth of this type of movie, it was near perfect. Eat that, Troy!

4 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
Once I was blind, now I can see., 29 January 2007
10/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This film is one of the most profound films I have ever seen. I've not been so affected by a film ever before. The anger and drudgery of a daily work schedule disappeared once I saw this film. All the worthless, mind-numbing crap doesn't affect me anymore since I watched this film.

The Story: Simplicity works best, and Del Toro & Co prove that all too well. The story follows a young Spanish girl in 1944 Fascist Spain, in the country with her pregnant mother and fascist step-father. She finds an ancient labyrinth in the forest near some backwoods town in the Spanish mountains (I think near the France-Spain border, but I could be wrong). Inside the labyrinth she meets a faun (the Pale Man/Pan) and sets out on a series of quests to regain her 'honor' as a princess in the underworld realm.

The FX: Now, I thought that all the shots with the Pale Man were CGI, but it turns out they were not. The faeries are CG, and done very well. The makeup is utterly amazing.

The Music: One word: haunting. The score brings the mood of film to life.

The Acting: I am completely unfamiliar with all the actors except Doug Jones (even though he's just a guy in a suit, really). Jones' mannerisms as the Pale Man were fantastic. Ivana Baquero was absolutely phenomenal as Ofelia. Her portrayal of a scared girl wrapped in a fantasy world was the best performance of the entire film. The only actor/actress I found not to be very convincing was Maribel Verdu, who played Mercedes. The first scenes with her were not very good, but her subplot as being an undercover agent for the resistance was very well done.

Overall: One of the best movies I have ever seen. As I stated before, I've never been so moved by a film. Magic exists. Beauty exists even in the ugliest of places. If you don't leave this film with some understanding of this, then you weren't paying close enough attention.

10 out of 10.

2 out of 7 people found the following review useful:
I can't believe it..., 19 August 2006
7/10

It was abnout 8pm last night when I decided to order my ticket for "Snakes on a Plane". Shockingly enough, I went thru with the order, expecting the biggest stinker on the silver screen to appear (and yes, I was expecting it to be worse than any Uwe Boll film of "Battlefield Earth"). I was pleasantly surprised to find out that this movie was indeed campy, trashy, downright-ridiculous, and quite an enjoyable experience. (With the right people. Take a group of friends, have a few brews, and enjoy).

The plot: Read the title. Do I need to say more?

The acting: Pure campy B-movie trash with Samuel L Jackson having a complete blast. Everybody else played their parts just as you would expect. Sci-Fi original movie acting, but on the big screen.

The SFX: Utterly fake looking, yet with that fakeness comes the fun part of the movie. It's funny to see overly

The Music: Probably one of the best soundtracks ever made. The music is trashy, yet completely fun. The music video at the end is most amusing.

Overall: 7/10, mostly because for pride reasons I cannot rate a movie this trashy and bad over a 7. It is fun, it can get you jumping out of your seat if you're not paying attention, and there's two incredibly bad-to-laugh-at scenes (like in Pulp Fiction), Snake on a *** and Snake on a ****.

0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Morder-day Satire at its Best, 13 February 2006
8/10

Granted, I am a huge Heinlein fan, and at first I was incredibly disappointed with the lack of continuity with the novel, but as I've gotten older, and more jaded mind you, this film really makes a lot of sense. (I was just a lowly freshman in high school when it first came out...so the satire didn't make sense).

Satire is a powerful tool (see Jonathan Swift), and when used properly, can comment on anything and everything, and all at the same time. Starship Troopers does that perfectly well, with the pro/anti-war movements, politics, the military, teenage angst, and overall, the impact that propaganda has on us too (its in all the little blurbs that interrupt the film). Verhoeven is truly a master at portraying satire, while Ed Nuemier writes it perfectly, with a great blending of action, sex, and a bit of suspense. Basil Poledouris' score, with the massive amounts of bass (oh how I love THX sound) and marches are what top this off. The marches are fantastic, and the subtle references to satire (see the last propaganda scene in the movie and you'll understand completely) top off this flick. Enjoyable, fun, and a downright riot are what describe Starship Troopers.

The Fog (2005)
9 out of 14 people found the following review useful:
Utter joke, 19 October 2005
1/10

One of the absolute worst remakes in all of cinematic history. It wasn't even remotely scary, nor was it creepy or believable. The acting on all fronts, even from Tom Welling, was sup-par at best. There wasn't any sense of horror or fear from any of the actors. If your town were being gobbled up by an unknown fog that killed people, I think you'd be panicking a little bit. But no, they're driving around and such, making complete donkey butts of themselves (I'd use other words, but expletives are prohibited).

The ending, ha! Overall it just wasn't good. Poor remake, and shame on John Carpenter for allowing Hollywood to botch what was a good flick. It boggles my mind that he was even interested in seeing a remake of The Fog.

2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Awestruck, 8 January 2005
10/10

There are no words I can muster to describe this brilliant piece of musical cinema. Since I was very young, about 8 or so, I've listened to the music and been enchanted by it. I never did get to see the stage version, and now that I've seen the film, I would drive down a sidewalk full of pedestrians to get a ticket. Well, maybe not that drastic, but darn close.

The music is the defining piece of the entire film. From the explosive entrance of the Overture till the silence at the end, the music is enthralling. It drives the story, more so than any other piece of music I've ever heard in cinema. Gerard Butler's voice is by far the most outstanding to me. His rock&roll twang in the baritone voice is much more convincing of the Phantom's anguish than the stage version's (I've no idea who it is, but the tenor voice does not fit for anguish). Emmy Rosum's voice is amazing as well. One thing that is a surprise though is Patrick Wilson. I'd never thought he'd be able to sing so well. Everything blends so perfectly in this. I cannot say much else, because the words are not here to describe it.

Joel Schumacher, you finally show some genius in film-making.

6 out of 10 people found the following review useful:
Classic, but why does IMDb hate it so?, 3 November 2004
10/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

You durn fanboys just don't know great cinema. Yea, LOTR was great and all, and so was SW, but Conan the Barbarian is in the same league as those films! How can you not see that? I do admit that it does get to be boring at times, but both LOTR and SW HAVE THOSE SAME PROBLEMS!!!

What makes this film so remarkable is how well the score, by Basil Poledouris, ties the film together. The score drives this movie, from beginning to end. Maybe that's why I fell in love with this movie when I was a young lad. Just the percussion of Anvil of Crom (opening title) keeps reverberating within my head on a continuous loop, but not a loop that's truly conscious. Yea, I know, a movie score doesn't make a movie, but ya know what does? Characterization.

James Earl Jones, The "Governator", and Ben Davidson (Rexor for the uneducated) do splendid jobs. Though JEJ doesn't quite have the screen time I wish he had, the mystery surrounding his character is fascinating and how he delivers it to. The Governator, well, obviously lives the role of Conan and will always be Conan. Rexor was probably the best character of the film. He was emotional, driven, and just plain fun to watch.

***SPOILER***

The final battle was by far the best. The climax of the movie is when Rexor is struck down by a Valkyrie-esque Sandahl Bergman and the furious Conan. Absolutely great music and fighting!

Troy (2004)
1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Beautiful, 22 May 2004
8/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Granted, this is not entirely like The Iliad and the first part of The Odyssey, but it is still a wonderful film. Wolfgang Peterson strikes gold again with this epic.

Acting - Top notch cast, and it delivers almost on all levels. Brad Pitt is elegant and brutal as Achilles. Peter O'Toole haunts the screen as Priam. Diane Kruger is great as Helen. Brian Cox is deliciously over the top as Agammemnon. Brendan Gleason needed more screentime as Menelaus. Sean Bean fit Odysseus perfectly. And Orlando Bloom...sigh...he couldn't act to save his life. And Eric Bana...the perfect Hector. All the other non-big names that had screentime were great.

Cinematography - Absolutely brilliant. The wide landscapes, the oceanscape, everything is utterly beautiful and clean. I've not seen this kind of filming in a long time.

Directing/Writing - Wolfgang Peterson is a god. Very well written, and the direction is fantastic. I cannot begin to describe how well it was done.

Music - Absolutely fantastic. THe way the music was turned down during battles reminded me of Saving Private Ryan, and it forced you to focus on the battles themselves. Spoiler - The fight between Hector and Achilles is the absolute BEST delivery ever.

Overall this is a great movie. The ending is waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too quick. Spoiler - I wanted more of the siege of Troy. Not perfect, but great nonetheless. 9 outta 10

0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Fantastic, 24 February 2004
9/10

Welcome back Quentin Tarantino. After not making a movie for nearly 7 years, he comes back with a violent, delightful revenge flick. I really can't say too much about this film because it'd just be fanboy blabbering. Top notch work, and I can't wait to see Vol. 2. 9.9/10

0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Utterly Fantastic, 18 February 2004
10/10

Sadly, this isn't the film I was expecting. The end was waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too choopy and cut up to be very coherent. If Jackson and Crew had to cut stuff, it should've been earlier in the film and saved the last battle in total. Especially the Mouth of Sauron. Not seeing him was a major disappointment.

Acting: The best female role of the entire series is Eowyn. There is no contest between her and the other female roles. Viggo does a spectacular job as Aragorn once again. The biggest surprise is Pippin. Besides having a great voice, he can act. Denethor was amazing. Faramir truely showed his quality. Etc etc etc...

Music: By far the best music out of the entire series. Howard Shore is one helluva composer.

Plot: Just like the book, minus a few things. The addition of Shelob to the film, instead of at the end of The Two Towers was great. Very haunting and freaky. (Stupid crowds always jumped...and screamed...and gasped...) Minus a few qualms with the battle at the Black Gate, this is great. Top notch.

SFX: The best of the entire series. 'Nuff said.

Directing: Peter Jackson, you are a god among insects.

Overall: 9.8 out of 10. If the film had the Mouth of Sauron and an ending battle that didn't seem so chopped up, it would've been perfect.


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