Reviews written by registered user
gridoon2017

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1939 reviews in total 
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Easygoing comedy, just fine when you are in an undemanding mood, 27 July 2017
6/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

By no means the best of its subgenre, but when you feel like switching on a film that will require no thinking whatsoever, it will help you pass 80 minutes easily enough. Most of the gags are familiar, but I did laugh at certain points. It never really tops its opening sequence, a spot-on parody of convenience store shootouts, although my single favorite line comes later: "Quid pro quo, Mr. Colt" - "What the hell does that mean?" - "It means I'm pretentious!". ** out of 4

Set-bound mini epic with a few spectacular scenes, 26 July 2017
6/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

"Samson and Delilah" is sort of a dry run for Cecil B. De Mille's ultimate grand epic, "The Ten Commandments". This is a smaller-scale production; there are some scenes shot outdoors, but most of it is just talk inside rather obvious studio sets. Nonetheless, the few scenes where Samson demonstrates his superhuman strength are spectacular, especially the climactic collapse of the temple (if you can set aside the small fact that he is committing mass murder, of course - after all, it's in the Bible!). Victor Mature is rather miscast as Samson, but Hedy Lamarr is perfect as the slightly sadomasochistic Delilah ("if you crush the life out of me with your bare arms, I will kiss them with my dying breath!"). **1/2 out of 4.

Vendetta (2015)
Terrible, 25 July 2017
3/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The Soska Sisters (Jen & Sylvia) made a splash in the horror film scene with "American Mary" (2012), but more recently their careers seem to have taken a down-turn; this is the second consecutive WWE film project (after "See No Evil 2") that they helm. They do inject a lot of blood (literally) into it, but the story is banal, and by the time of the climactic prison riot, it is clear that the whole thing has gotten out of their hands (it's also distressing to see a film directed by two women that's so male-centered, and the only woman in the cast has three lines and then gets gruesomely killed). Dean Cain looks tired and overweight, while the imposing Big Show has trimmed down and is better than expected. Michael Eklund apes (I think) Gary Oldman in "Leon" - he deserves a Razzie award. * out of 4.

Last and least, 24 July 2017
5/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

"Another You" is a decent comedy, but it's most likely the weakest of the Richard Pryor - Gene Wilder collaborations. There simply aren't enough big laughs in it. The two stars still work well (and affectionately) together, and Mercedes Ruehl has an amazing lingerie scene (at age 43, no less!) that's probably the highlight of the picture. ** out of 4.

Intermittently funny, but too long, 23 July 2017
5/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This spoof of early-1990s "hood" movies is like an R-rated "Naked Gun" - on crack. It's sometimes funny and clever (I liked the gag of father and son being the same age (!), or the raining autumn leaves), other times vulgar and witless. And it's too long (a full 90 minutes) for this kind of plot-less parody. The title may be the best joke of them all! ** out of 4.

Summerslam (2007) (TV)
"The biggest party of the summer" really comes alive only at the end, 17 July 2017
6/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

It's supposed to be "the biggest party of the summer", but most of the matches simply lack that big "event" feel. The outcomes are predictable, the comedy sketches are unfunny, and the Diva Battle Royal is a royal mess. The exception is the main event, where John Cena faces Randy Orton in a WWE championship match. This was the period when WWE fans had just about enough of Cena (as Jim Ross helpfully notes, he was champion for 24 out of the last 27 months!); every time Orton (the supposed heel of the match) got on the offensive the crowd cheered, and every time Cena got the upper hand he was booed out of the building! This audience participation gives this match a charge that the others don't have.

Top cast in a somewhat plodding film, 17 July 2017
6/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

"Undercurrent" is notable as Katharine Hepburn's only acting excursion into the thriller/mystery/damsel-in-distress genre; she makes an honest stab at it, but it's not really her strong suit. The script, by Edward Chodorov, is generally not predictable, but it is talky and plodding; apart from excellent use of light and shadow in some key scenes, director Vincente Minnelli doesn't do much that's outstanding. It's not a bad film, but it's not as good as you might expect from that cast, either. **1/2 out of 4.

Threesome (1994)
Fresh, funny and bittersweet, 15 July 2017
7/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

"Threesome" is like a cross between "Jules and Jim" (for obvious reasons) and "When Harry Met Sally" (it examines the same central question - can there be "just" friendship between a man and a woman?). It's also the movie where I fell in love with Lara Flynn Boyle, back in 1994. Watching it again now, it remains fresh, funny, bold, bittersweet, and even wise at the end. Like the whole experience does for Josh Charles' character, it's a film that stays with you. *** out of 4.

Virtue (1932)
Early Lombard shows presence, 9 July 2017
6/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Dated and predictable in some aspects, hardboiled and direct in others, "Virtue" is most notable for one of the earliest, dramatic roles of comedienne Carole Lombard. She already shows a strong screen presence. In the film's best (without a doubt) scene, she repeatedly slaps a woman who has swindled her out of 200 dollars. Go Carole! Warning: do not think there is something wrong with your TV after the opening credits roll - the film does open with a blank screen / audio only for a while! **1/2 out of 4.

Bold pre-Code drama, 9 July 2017
6/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

"Night World" has a dynamic start and lots of promising pre-code elements, which, however, don't quite jell; maybe the problem is the lack of a really compelling plot. But it has a natural, unaffected performance by Mae Clarke, one early Busby Berkeley dance number (with lightly dressed girls) that's a clear sign of things to come from him, and a hard-hitting finale. If you like this film, you must watch "Wonder Bar" from 1934 - it's similar, and even better. **1/2 out of 4.


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