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|568 reviews in total|
The third instalment in the much deflated Focker series, finally sees
Ben Stiller have kids and DeNiro continues to mistrust him.
There honestly isn't much going on here, hence the lack of trying to explain what the film is about. It's the third time around and we see the same stuff we've seen in the first two films. DeNiro is mistrusting of Stiller, Stiller does something stupid and has to make up for it. This time around the monkey in the wrench is that Stiller has kids.
Owen Wilson comes back this time, which is playing up the same joke from the first film. He should be the one with her, we get it. Harvey Keitel has a small role here as well. Keitel and DeNiro should indeed team up together again, but not in the comedy cliché, get back to the streets and violence where you two belong. Finally it was widely reported that Hoffman wasn't happy with the script, which is why he is absent from most of the film. I say most because he finally agreed to do it, I guess they waved enough money in his face for him to stop hating himself. His scenes a few and far between.
The least funny in the three films and one of that not needed at all. There is no story to tell here. Honestly there only should have been one film. It was funny and original at the time. Now the well is dry and Stiller needs to find another cash boat. Hopefully he doesn't make a third Night of the Museum because the second one was a big stinker.
I can't tell you enough, how unfunny Little Fockers is. The film is lazy, and another low for the once talented Robert DeNiro. The man hasn't made a good film in years. The last decade has been referred to as "DeNiro's Sellout" years. It's hard to argue that when he turns in an effort like this.
My favourite review of this movie is from Anders Wotzke, who claimed Schindler's List was funnier than this. Funny thing is, he's right.
Your Highness is a comical tale of two young brothers, one who is noble
and heroic, the other who does nothing and complains. Together they
must go on a quest to rescue the heroic brother's soon to be wife from
an evil sorcerer. On their journey they meet a young woman who is on a
quest of her own, they decide to team up.
Your Highness is unfortunately a one joke film stretched to a feature length oddity. The idea of a film about the middle ages, while throwing in sex jokes and foul language was funny in the trailer, the actual film is not. The problem is that the trailer was just the right length for this type of material. The thin joke gets tired very fast and the film ends up not being funny for 3/4 of the running time. It's a shame too because it attracted such talent.
Danny McBride is usually one of the funniest characters in whatever film he is doing. Tropic Thunder and Pineapple Express, he managed to be hilarious without stealing the show. That is very hard to do. He's finally given the chance to lead a film and he drops the ball. He was nowhere near as crude as he could have or should have been. He co-wrote the screenplay, which might lend a hand in the film's problem. Apparently most of it was ad-libbed. So whatever they thought was funny at the time made it into the final film. Word to the wise next time, have jokes on paper first, then do the ad-libbing.
James Franco is the straight man here, if there is such a character in such a ridiculous film. He's oblivious to many things, he has one thing on his mind the entire time. He must save his bride to be before she is deflowered by the sorcerer. Apparently she is a virgin and if the sorcerer has sex with her when the two moons unite, she will bare a dragon. As far as quest films go, this one seems rather preoccupied with unfunny jokes than anything adventure like.
If you want to see it because of Natalie Portman and the famous scene with her thong, I would suggest sticking to the red band trailer, because it shows everything that's in the film. That trailer is funnier and sexier than this film is. You get the jokes, you get the skin and you're done. You don't have to sit through 90 plus minutes of boring schlock.
I managed to chuckle a few times, it is a comedy after all. Your Highness manages to set the bar very low for comedies. This time the critics actually got it right. Skip this one.
I watched this based on the recommendation of a co-worker, who said it
was difficult to watch and horrible to think about. An American Crime
is about the first reported case of child abuse and still to this day
remains as one of the most horribly cases about child abuse.
It's one thing to watch a movie about someone beating up a kid, it's another to have that movie be based on true facts. An American Crime is not only based on true facts, it doesn't even show you all the atrocities that happened. Take that as a pro or con, but An American Crime, as decides to play it a little safe and downplay a lot of what happened to this poor little girl. That's not to say that the film still isn't hard to watch, it is.
To give you a little bit more story here, Ellen Page plays the lead girl, Sylvia Likens and Catherine Keener plays the abusive adult, Gertrude Baniszewski. Likens and her sister are given to Gertrude to watch while their parents go on a carnival tour to make some money. The parents don't know Gertrude, they only met her through church. It seem that Gertrude takes a lot of her frustration with life (being poor, loser boyfriend, lots of kids, health/mental issues) out on Sylvia. There is one moment in the film where I thought that it took artistic liberties and played it up, but upon some research discovered that everything was true.
The neighbourhood kids and Gertrudes own children go to see Sylvia, who has been locked up in the basement by this time. They decide to put cigarettes out on her, hose her down in water, humiliate her and physically beat the crap out of her. Why? Because their mother said it was okay and the other kids I guess succumbed to peer pressure. Sylvia is at her all time low when Gertrude then decides to carve the words "I'm a prostitute and proud of it" in her stomach. Terrible indeed.
The performances are great, Keener gives a subtle performance for such a horrible character. I felt sorry for her at times, don't know if I should have. Maybe if the character was played by Beth Grant I would feel different, because she usually plays characters that get under my skin. Page literally starved herself to go through similar situations like Sylvia. Not her best performance, as most of the time she's just sitting there taking abuse, but worthy enough.
The film goes back and forth between the court case and testimonies of people, to the events that eventually lead to Sylvia's death. I did not know about the case beforehand and figured that she had died from the way they were presenting the film. Then we are given a scene in which she escapes and makes it home safe and sound, only to discover that it's some kind of out of body experience and her real lifeless body lies on the kitchen floor.
I'd recommend this film to those who want to learn about the case, as reading about it might be too difficult.
Rabbit Hole is a mature film. It's hard to describe what that means,
but that's how I felt when I was watching it. Aaron Eckhart and Nicole
Kidman are a grieving couple. Their son was killed, hit by a car. What
makes this film different is that we are introduced to these two after
that has happened. Their son was killed several months ago and the film
is about these two characters trying their best to move on.
Kidman gives one of her best performances in years. The hardest thing I believe a parent has to do is outlive their child. Kidman gives a multi-layered performance that is both restrained and lavish in detail. She is trying her best to move on with her life, she wants to move away, start over. Her husband, Eckhart, doesn't want that. He watches a video of his son on his phone almost every night. He goes to support groups to deal with the pain. He gets angry when Kidman takes down their child's drawings from the fridge. He thinks she is trying to erase his memory. Can these two characters stay together even though they both want different things?
Eckhart, in my opinion, holds the film together with his performance. Kidman gets the glory from the reviews, but it's Eckhart that manages to hold things together. when he's on the screen, you feel the sense of loss in his face. It's not an actor trying to portray a man who has lost his son. Few actors manage to hit that area where they are on screen and it seems flawless. Eckhart has done that with this role.
The film is rich with great performances from the smaller supporting characters as well. Dianne Wiest is Kidman's mother who also lost a child. She tries to be a helping hand, but Kidman won't let her. Real family with real problems, nothing here is Hollywood coated. John Cameron Mitchell's third feature, his two previous efforts were independent films. The rock opera Hedwig and the Angry Inch and the sexual exploring Short Bus. Both I thought were good films. Mitchell seems like a focused director who wants to explore topics that no one wants to touch. I admire that. This film in the wrong hands could have been manipulative melodrama.
There is a small subplot involving a teenager that some might not like that much. I found that it was just an outlet for one character while an obstacle for the other. Rabbit Hole is a tad slow, but the performances are enough to keep you engaged. Ebert said in his review that he knew what the move was going to be about, but he was impressed with how it was told. I feel the same way.
Easy, it's not funny, it's not romantic and it cost a boat load of
money just to get recognizable stars to show up. It neglects this
little important thing called a script. How Do You Know manages to be
dull, boring and unimportant all at once. Bravo team, not only did you
make a box office bomb, but a failure of a film as well. Let's all give
each other a well deserved pat on the back.
Jack Nicholson, looking for a pay check, has a small role as Paul Rudd's father. He tries his best to get Rudd out of some legal problems that he may or may not of had a hand in. Reese Witherspoon is a softball player who gets cut from the team, she cries about it and hooks up with baseball player and all around rich guy, Owen Wilson. They aren't right for each other, but they don't know that yet. You know who's right for her? The down on his luck guy, Paul Rudd.
How Do You Know manages to go beat for beat what one would expect and never throws any curveballs. It not only tries to be formulaic, but it tries to be boringly formulaic. Witherspoon, as adorable as she is, does nothing for this thankless role and she has no chemistry with her on screen male partners. Either of them. Owen Wilson and Paul Rudd are in sleep mode here. They feel more comfortable doing what they do best. Rudd belongs with Apatow doing R- rated comedy and Wilson belongs with Anderson making a quirky film that some people love and some people hate. Here they seem like fish out of water.
What makes the whole thing sting even more is that James L. Brooks is behind the lens. You can skip this so called rom com, because it's missing both of those key ingredients, romance and comedy.
...was the tagline for this flick, so it caught my interest. Burning
Palms is a film that tries to push boundaries and would only upset
tight conservative folk. It seems to try too hard and comes off a bit
juvenile. There are 5 stories, they act as their own stories and do not
interconnect with one another as some ads might say. They are told from
a comic book, a tales from the crypt style thing, minus the hilarious
The first deals with a couple who are getting married. The husband to be is seeing his daughter for a week, she is flying down from wherever she was. Innocent enough, until you find out that the relationship between the two is a little too close for comfort. They openly talk about sex, sunbath nude and dance erotically. The soon to be wife is taken back and tries to get the the bottom of the "relationship".
The second deals with a couple in college or university. He loves big boobs, she has small ones/ During sex, the man asks the girlfriend to stick her finger in his anus. She does so because she doesn't want to lose him to a bigger chested woman. After the act, she gets it stuck in her mind that her finger smells like poo, so she scrubs and scrubs until she finally decides to cut the finger off.
The third story has two gay men adopting a black child from the black market. She seems to be straight out of Africa because she doesn't say a single word to anyone, yet grabs a spear and throws it at an animal and growls. Thinking they are over their heads with a child, they leave her alone in the woods and get a dog instead.
The fourth story is the least exciting one. Three young and spoiled boys hold a "Court TV" bit in their house when a valuable item from the housemaid goes missing. We discover a dark secret from the housemaids past that turns things upside down in the house. Their stoner babysitter laughs at the sticky situation.
The final and last segment actually happens to be my favourite, and the one redeeming factor in this film. The story opens with the Rape of Sarah. After the rapist flees, she finds his wallet under her couch and decides to track him down. When she does, he soon finds out she has some sick and disturbing plans of her own.
The final segment with have one thinking of a rape revenge bit, but that's where the story wants you to go and the direction it takes itself is something I applaud. I was surprisingly taken back at the last one and it had the best performance. It helps that the two leads were Zoe Saldana and Nick Stahl.
Overall, a lackluster film that wants to be more 'dirty' than it actually is. Who knows, maybe I'm one demoralized sicko and this film actually is twisted. But if you've seen half the films I have, you'll find this pretty tame and immature.
That's not saying much though, cause the film still lacks a lot of
qualities that would deem a film enjoyable. They are pumping these
films out like it's nobodies business and unfortunately they are making
boatloads of cash. New Moon, the worst of the three, was misguided and
had no interesting conflict, other than who Bella should date. Finally
the series gives the viewers a showdown of violence as the "vampires"
and shape-shifters take on a new army of "vampires".
There is a quote on the internet that best describes my feelings towards the series and it compares it to the other mega cash cow Harry Potter. "Harry Potter is about confronting fears, finding inner strength and doing what is right in the face of adversity. Twilight is about how important it is to have a boyfriend." Now, despite what you may think, I don't hate the series. If I did I wouldn't watch them and flame Twilight messageboards. Instead I go in with an open mind. Yet for some reason the series continues to impress me with how lazy and boring it is.
I sit here wondering though, what could possibly happen in the next two films. I get the fact that they get married and have a kid, but it seems like a epilogue that is going to be stretched out way too long. The immediate conflict with Victoria is solved. So unless some kind of Volturi stuff happens (most likely), are two more films really necessary? The answer is no. They took a page right out of Harry Potter's book and decided to split the last film in two so they could make twice as much money. The young girls still flock to see a shirtless cry complain about wanting to be with a girl and a moody guy who no one understand but her. In real life do young girls have to choose between such an incredibly shallow pair of boys?
Eclipse happens to have the best fight sequences and dialogue that doesn't suck. The characters finally seem comfortable in their roles, despite still not reaching what I would call, quality acting. Kristen Bell herself, for whatever reason, looks totally different in this film than the previous one. Not a complaint, just something I noticed. She still lacks the strength (if there were any to begin with) the character so desperately needs to be interesting. These characters don't really seem to change. They have been saying the same stuff in every single film. Jacob cries because he wants to be with Bella. Edward wants to be with Bella, but doesn't want her to become a "vampire". Bella still wants to leave any career aspirations at home, along with her friends and family and kill herself to be with a boy.
The most interesting scene in the whole film is when Jacob and Edward finally sit down to talk one on one without Bella interrupting. Could this be a sign of maturity?
Following the lives of three men and how they deal with a big company
that is downsizing. Ben Affleck, Tommy Lee Jones and Chris Cooper play
the three leads and how they deal with the situations.
Much like Up In The Air did a few years back, The Company Men is about a depressing time in our lives, when the economy is in the crapper and people are losing their jobs. The film has an obstacle to overcome, people don't like to watch films that are depressing and reflect their own current lives. This is where the film fails in some ways. The characters that lose their jobs live beyond their means and do incredibly stupid things.
Ben Affleck loses his job early in the film, we see he plays golf, lives in a big and drives a Porsche. He absolutely refuses to sell the car and stop playing golf despite the fact that they are on a tighter budget. He refuses work from a helping hand because he thinks it's lower than him. The character eventually overcomes his own arrogance, but it's too much for this reviewer to forgive. I can't connect to a character who would risk supporting his wife and kids so he can look good on the golf course.
Cooper takes things to the extreme in his reaction and Jones gets back stabbed by a friend. It's Jone's division and he didn't know about the downsizing. It tests his friendship with Craig T. Nelson. Kevin Costner plays the brother in-law to Affleck and offers him a job putting up drywall. At first it is declined, giving us even more reason to hate Affleck's character. Finally he comes to his sense and takes him up on the offer.
The film has decent performances and despite those irritating elements, it is well crafted. Some aspects of the film, again, dealing with the characters, leaves me scratching my head. Jones is sleeping with Bello's character, yet still lives with his wife back at home? His son meets Bello's character and acknowledges his parents being split up. This aspect of the relationship is clunky and written poorly.
If you're a fan of the actors involved, I would suggest giving the film a look. They all do a good enough job to make the film entertaining. Again, I must say that while the film is a tad depressing, it's hard to connect to those rich people who lose their jobs. Had the film been for the more common American, maybe it would have been more successful?
Knights are given the task of transporting a woman suspected of being a
witch to a sacred place where she will be given a trail.
Another Nic cage film that I think gets unfairly bashed by critics and moviegoers alike. Just like Drive Angry, Season of the Witch is a bad film that is entertaining enough to warrant a viewing. There are many aspects of the film that are not good and would normally scare people away. Shoddy CGI near around the climax, a weak story that is basically go from point A to point B, lazy acting and bad writing. With all these aspects working against the film, it still finishes with its shameful head held high.
The characters are more wooden than a puppet. You never get the sense of friendship that is suppose to be between Cage and Perlman. They both don't even seem like they want to be a part of the film. Yet Nic Cage does what Nic Cage does best and elevates the film to a Nic Cage level. Clichéd elements enter the film left, right and centre. Cage kills a woman and it haunts him, so he throws down his sword, as does his Perlman. What they fought and killed for wasn't what they thought. Enter his guilt, a nightmare here and there and nothing more and tangible for him as a character.
It definitely feels like a Nic Cage vehicle as no one else in the film really has the chance to do anything. Not even the girl who plays the "is she/isn't she" a witch. She sits in the cage the whole time. I would have liked the film to play up the whole mystery around her. It spells out what she is capable of way too early in the film for my liking.
I have a soft spot in my heart for films like this, I was one of the few people who really liked The 13th Warrior. A film about a small group of people who must defend or go on some kind of journey always seems enjoyable to me. Season of the Witch is just that, an enjoyable movie. Maybe if you go in expecting trash, based on the numerous reviews, you'll leave thinking it wasn't all that bad. I know I did.
A young girl is institutionalized by her abusive stepfather, after she
accidentally kill her little sister. Not able to cope with reality, she
retreats to an alternate reality where she comes up with a plan to
escape. That's putting it lightly.
If you want a more literal translation, for some reason she chooses to escape to a whore house fantasy, where she dances for people. When she dances for people she escapes yet again, to a more stylized and action oriented fantasy. I think Snyder needed an excuse to show his creative imagery and instead of trying to craft a reasonable story, he throws together some kind of conglomerate mess of proportions. Here is a guy who has had success in adapting other works of art. Whether it's a remake (Dawn of the Dead) or a graphic novel (300, Watchman) Snyder's only real task was being able to translate something already written and visualized, to the big screen. This was his first attempt at something original. He fails.
As a visual spectacle, it's great. No denying that. But I recall a film by the name of Avatar being blasted for it's unoriginal story and the fact that it relied too heavily on visuals. Sucker Punch, while being original, lacks any sense of purpose in its story. Why do we care for these characters? The answer is we don't. Baby Doll has little to no dialogue, Rocket would make a better lead character to get behind. I felt more emotion for the baby dragon that is slain than any of the female characters that parade around in little to no clothing. A 14 year old boys wet dream.
That's how Sucker Punch comes off as, something Snyder thought up of when he was a kid. The film is for people with ADD, because Snyder hopes you forget the first 20 minutes of the film as he tries to surprise you with the ending, bringing it back to the beginning again. Why do we care for something that doesn't happen. Everything we see is her fantasy. When the ending is revealed as to what truly happen, we never get to see that reality. Snyder needs to mature as a filmmaker and stop treading around in these waters.
They seem to give up on their quest for objects half way through as well. They need a map in their first mission, they get it. Fire in the second, the succeed. A knife in their third and all of a sudden they are trying to steal a bomb? I'm sure there is an explanation for this somewhere, but it's missing in the film. Watching Inception beforehand will give people a better understand of a level within a level scenario that is attempted here. Inception is the better film and it pulls it off way more effectively, despite having more confusing elements, it comes off clearer than Sucker Punch.
A good soundtrack and entertaining visuals aren't enough for me to recommend this film. I'm sure the target audience will love it. Young boys who no attention span. It tries to cram every fantasy element into one: Dungeons and Dragons, Futuristic Science Fiction, Alternate History. The film has Nazis that look like Helghast from Killzone, dragons, robots, giant rock samurai that bleeds light. So many cool elements that are jammed together into a mess of a story line. Give me a reason to care for these 'fantasy' sequences and this film could have rocked my socks. Unfortunately I sat there wondering why I should even care, instead of enjoying myself. That's where the problem lies. You'll be wondering why should I care?
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