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east coast Twilight screening
Surprisingly good, of course it is sometimes a bit sugary, but that's to be expected in a teenage love story. Catherine Hardwicke did a great job, I love her edge. The casting director did well in choosing actors not movie stars to flesh out the book. Robert Pattinson plays the 'Hero' with the right amount of self-loathing and swagger. Kristen Stewart is believable and has a wonderfully tough vulnerability. You can almost see the supporting cast holding back a smile or grin, which made it even better. The Pacific Northwest looks gorgeous. It is a very important character in the film. Twilight made me want to take a trip to Oregon and Washington. A walk along the Cannon Beach coastline or canoe down the Salmon River would be lovely. And it would be worth every penny to hire a guide to hike to the stunning Multnomah Falls. Twilight's target audience will definitely see this movie several times. I believe the film will reach the magic box office number it needs to make sequels : )
Grace Is Gone (2007)
Military Family film
Lloyd Dobler is dead, long live the actor John Cusack.
This honest slice of military family life elevates JC out of those mindless, cutesy romantic/comedy roles, thank god. He's almost unrecognizable as the middle-age man trapped inside anyone's worst nightmare. A combat death in the family robs his daughters of their childhood innocence and he's not emotionally equipped to process it. Alessandro Nivola, Shelan O'Keefe and Gracie Bednarczyk are a fantastic supporting cast. First time director James C. Strouse wrote the screenplay with Cusack in mind. Clint Eastwood was convinced by John Cusack, who also produced, to score the film. Thanks John, many illustrious awards shall be placed at your feet.
This is the official movie URL http://www.graceisgone-themovie.com/
Live Free or Die Hard (2007)
Here are my random thoughts after viewing this film:
Bruce Willis is a class act!
Justin Long has his great moment in an On-Star bit with Bruce. It's obvious Kevin Smith absolutely loved doing this film and he played his part perfectly. Timothy Olyphant, who plays the snarky antagonist, is an all-around good guy. Len Wiseman did well to hire Acrobat/Stunt Coordinator, Cyril Raffaelli (District 13) as a bad guy.
This could have been a perfect 10, but it still delivers enough sarcasm, bullets, explosions, kicks and punches to make it well worth your time. A solid summer flick.
Flags of Our Fathers (2006)
another nomination for Clint
A great film showing war as it was, and is: ugly, frantic, corporate, confusing, frustrating and very sad. Soldiers accompany their friends into horrific situations with terrible consequences. Ryan Phillippe, Adam Beach & Jesse Bradford are WONDERFUL. Paul Walker did not suck. Neal McDonough & Barry Pepper are great (pepper is older but still hot...fell in love with his bible-quoting sniper in SPRyan). Paul Haggis re-wrote the screenplay, which I really enjoyed. The music is haunting as done by Clint, as well as his son Kyle. Please don't leave when the lights go up. B&W photos of the real people this film was based on are shown during the credits. I will see this film quite a few more times.
my 2 cents.....
Tom Everett Scott is the heart & soul of 'Saved'. He makes this show work. Yes, the rest of the cast was thoughtfully-chosen and they interact wonderfully. However, if T.E. Scott was not the lead character I wouldn't be watching, and I don't believe I'm in the minority. He has that thing you can't turn away from or ignore. Rita Wilson saw it, bless her heart, and because of her he was cast in Tom Hanks, "That Thing You Do." The choice of music is smart and a breathe of fresh air as well. Even Wyatt's t-shirts make a difference. Can't wait till they release the DVD, I want it. 'Saved' is the best show on cable right now, don't miss it!! Oh, and for the record, I work for 2 doctors, both my brothers are doctors and I was set to marry one, but didn't (thank goodness).
The Lake House (2006)
why the film works....
Yes my Darlings, this is a dramatic, funny, romantic, time-travelin' movie. And the film succeeds because the chemistry between Keanu & Sandra is tangible. They've worked together before & genuinely like each other. It's the most important element; because their comfort level helps you believe the story and forget that you're watching Sandra & Keanu. As the characters get to know each other through correspondence, the film seduces you into suspended belief. Your left-brain's logical, analytical, fact-based reasoning doesn't want you to root for them, but your heart does. This film skips over the scientific & enables you to explore the tiniest possibilities of 'what if.......' Yes, it's corny, but so what. So is ROMANCE! See it with someone you desire.
X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)
Having read everything about the XMen 3 -Last Stand, I was still surprised & happy/sad at the end of this movie. Yes, there's a hot scene between Logan & Jean Grey (or is it Dark Phoenix?). Yes, there are major deaths on both sides of the fight between the X-Men & Magneto's Brotherhood of Mutants. Yes, there are good 'funny lines' delivered by my personal favorite - Hugh Jackman. Though not enough brutal Wolverine fight scenes ---- as in X2 when he's defending Xavier's School. Good news is the transformation of Jean Grey to Dark Phoenix. It's subtle, tense, yet horrifying. Unfortunately, Mystique is not given enough screen time (she's my 2nd favorite Mutant). However, Ellen Page (star of 'Hard Candy') is perfect for Kitty Pryde and so is a beefed-up Vinnie Jones as the Juggernaut. Even if this movie does exceedingly well, I really don't think they could round up the main cast back for a 4th installment. Best way to go is with Hugh Jackman and the 'Wolverine' film. Wolverine's current screenwriter is David Benioff (husband to Amanda Peet). They don't have a director yet, but I don't think they'll have a problem securing one. The question is would Bryan Singer direct? After Brett Ratner punk'd poor Hugh Jackman on MTV......I don't think he'll work with him again, though I could be wrong. Enjoy and don't leave your seat till after all the credits roll.
Eight Below (2006)
family film. Though I'm not Disney's #1 fan, this is good work from them. My friend Pai-Yei is a Climatologist, who's lived in the arctic collecting ice samples. The danger of living in the harsh environment makes for some very interesting photos & humorous stories. The same is reflected in this film. Jason Biggs comes across well as the 'jester' of the group. Bruce Greenwood is good as the scientist. The group's pilot, Moon Bloodgood, is attractive eye-candy. Studmuffin, Paul Walker, IS thee tracker/dog-sledder. He's a proud, concerned, worried, fussy parent to his dogs and you believe him. Of course, it doesn't hurt that he actually is a dog-lover and parent. Definitely worth full-price admission!!
The World's Fastest Indian (2005)
Tony Hopkins shines
Caught an advance screening of Tony Hopkins newest film on Monday. I didn't have any pre-conceived notions. Thankfully, I was pleasantly rewarded with a well-done, small film, filled with great performances. Of course, Tony Hopkins does a fabulous job. The man playing Jim Moffet possesses a handsome, eerily familiar face. His name is Christopher Kennedy Lawford. You may have seen him before in movies like Russia House, Doors, Thirteen Days, etc. But it is his father, Peter Lawford, that springs to mind, when you see Christopher's face. You should definitely see this movie. It's a little film that speaks volumes. Then, do yourself a favor & purchase Christopher's book "Symptoms of Withdrawal: A Memoir of Snapshots and Redemption." It will change the way you look at your life.
Better than everything.....!!
Thank goodness the smart people at Universal did the right thing and got this movie made. What a pleasure!! I was so entranced in the plot, that I'm looking forward to seeing this film in the theatre EVERY WEEKEND, for the next few months. AND I will be bringing all my friends. Joss Whedon & his crew does NOT disappoint. I'm hoping with the big turnout, Universal will greenlight at least 2 more movies. The entire cast & crew were so dedicated, that it shows in every frame. And all the characters enjoy a moment of humor. If you have not yet seen the series Firefly on DVD, I highly suggest buying or borrowing it from a friend. This knocks the stuffing out of the majority of Hollywood releases in the past 2 yrs -- what a relief. Good job Guys!!!!!