Reviews written by registered user
hshowe

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12 reviews in total 
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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
chick flick for the cf resistant, 24 October 2010
8/10

Man if you question Mccarthy's ability to change into someone else watch this Marlboro man incarnation. The good thing about the Hallmark lifetime type movie is that they stop short of actual erm shagging because sometimes the chemistry really doesn't work. Very interesting how these characters really surprise each other. i didn't read the book but kept watching because i suspected a good movie was hiding under all the meet cute. i was right. I watched this on Youtube and stayed until after midnight at the starbucks watching the end. Mccarthy really submerses into the role, i urge any casting director to review this. Methinks A.M. has gotten underestimated.

"Jericho" (2006)
2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Jericho S1 thru S2 ep 5 -spoilers, 12 March 2008
10/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Online episodes with audio commentary option make a command DVD experience out of new episodes where a lot of stuff happens very fast. Perfectly cast, this show has one of the best ensemble casts working on TV today. Unlike "LOST", which keeps each character hovering in front of a mirror for way too long, Jericho delivers plot guns blazing. The folks in Jericho are on their own "island".

Jericho is the show that could. What could have been only a mildly interesting sci fi adventure became one of the best on TV in the league of serial shows. Jericho's recovery after the bombs go off and the mystery of Jake staying there and how the town survives is involving. This could happen, for real. The characters are all delivered poignantly. But Season 2 explodes with drama and packed action. Not one second of screen time is wasted, and S2 makes all the character and plot of Season one pay off every minute.

Jake returns to his hometown of Jericho after years of absence and "subcontracting". The bombs going off and the weird aftermath spark his curiosity and suspicion. Jake's relationship with his family and friends goes from estrangement to enforced co-residence. Jake takes a stand and rewrites his own character, meeting demands of the apocalyptic world in the company of familiar strangers.

Many other people come to grips with the new microworld reality of Jericho. Their beginnings are now the fabric of relationships that ensures survival. Others are greatly affected by the decisions Jake makes. But unlike LOST, which centers around Jack, Jericho combines each character as its own separate unit that contributes to the whole.

By s2, Jericho citizens in the minds of viewers have a cogent history. People who were suspicious of each other and wary of getting involved in S1 are making life and death agreements and performing handgun law decisions in every minute of s2.

The stakes have developed to knife point, every corner holds a reckoning. The Jennings & Rall company, the new Cheyenne government, Major Beck's possible co-option as a rebellion resource, and Hawkin's curation of the remaining bomb are potboilers. If "Jericho" is any indication of what viewers can support and get from TV versus the "Bionic Woman" debacle, CBS and showrunners should listen to what viewers want.

Stay tuned!

4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
Sunday In New York, 22 September 2006
10/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

For someone growing up on the west coast in the seventies on the burned plains of Burbank, a spring day in New York looked like a fantastic wonderland. I used to think it would have been more interesting with Rod Taylor and Cliff Robertson switched around, but oh well.

Illustrates well the advantages of a split level apartment for sure. But today this place would rent to a Rockefeller for the square footage. Airline pilots lived like this?

Hilarious comedy without all that much sex, amazing the kind of movies you could make back in the 1960's. Jane Fonda begins her meteoric rise as a nice girl who may want to explore options with the right guy, to whom her encouragement may have squeamish repercussions.

4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:
Nicely done, 12 April 2006
10/10

Not as boring as the James adaptations, first rate performances with the usual aristos pretending money isn't everything, and the promise of America shimmering on the horizon. Cillian Murphy and Miranda Otto both have their stardoms explained by these roles, as does Matthew Mcfadyen posing as a "waster". Shirley Henderson does a great job gluing you to the screen, what will she do, the daughter of a wealthy Jew one day, the disgraced orphan the next. This movie does a really fantastic job showing what Historical London of the period must have been like. The "Jewish problem" is worked on a little bit, and also the promise of the great tycoon fortunes to be made in America. Don't miss the big dinner seen- wow everything is actually laid out on the table.

15 out of 17 people found the following review useful:
Great Movie, 3 April 2006
10/10

Winner Best Picture and Director Golden Globe and 11 Academy Award nominations is a tip. From a real-life story of primary star Leslie Browne (longtime of the ABT) the film follows Emilia's adoption into the company of ballet stars from a family of dancers who retired to have her. Shirley Maclaine's Best movie. Anne Bancroft is unbelievable as a ballet dancer not ready to give up the limelight but ready to steal her friend's thunder as the enabler of a great ballet career for Emilia. This a great movie. Watch for some great choreography by all the big names, plus the great plus Alvin Ailey, and a shop window of ballet greats. Baryshnikov in his prime, Martins and Merrill on the side, Great editing, cinematography, the whole shebang.

12 out of 13 people found the following review useful:
Single & Single meets Lost in Translation, 29 December 2005

The one movie I've seen in the last 2 years that doesn't actually telegraph what's happening 2 frames ahead. i took the wrong fork in the mystery, got surprised, loved the production values, enjoyed some great music, the best mood music with ice since Smilla's sense of snow, and a video store find turned out to be the best in 4 rentals.

This movie got slammed by a lot of critics, who seemed to resist what the director was trying to present. life is a well choreographed, visually designed mystery with randomness thrown in. The terrestrial back story to the anomie in the societal makeup brings the character;s focus and hope in clearer definition.

is the headline craziness in this film any weirder than what's actually in the headlines today? There is a post-Katrina resonance to the topography agitating for notice in the periphery, and i actually wondered if it was written by Philip K Dick, there is a first-The Matrix freshness here that backs up our suspicions, that nightmare incidence of a look over your shoulder, when not only is something there, but it's not good, and you can actually see all the way down its gaping maw.

see it.

Crusader (2005) (TV)
16 out of 24 people found the following review useful:
this movie is so bad it's a comedy, 3 November 2005

evidently Spain gets more rain than London, (contrary to "My Fair Lady"), nobody wears a raincoat, and women have a competition to see how few ounces of clothing they can wear. Media networks are peopled by directors like Michael York named "McGovern", and women named Luciana or Vittoria or something who speak with flat American accents and look like Bo Derek. The star reporters in Spain are Americans too, with names like "Hank Robinson", who seem to need to save Spain from its greedy media titans. Good thing America doesn't have any greedy media titans. It's amazing how much metropolitan Barcelona looks like Vancouver, during action shots, or even Pittsburgh. Also its amusing how everyone in the cast at the millionaire/executive level is two steps away from a grimy alley devoid of people, especially if they're carrying incriminating tapes/evidence. The streets of Barcelona would seem to be peopled about 85% with contract killers waving guns with perfect lip gloss. TV stations with tapes of global impact are empty so the villains can stalk the place, (we all know how stations wait to release killer videotape). have some beers ready to drink every time someone shouts "bullsh*t" at the screen!

Timeline (2003)
0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Hard on Thinking people, Great Bread and Circus Fodder for Serfs, 3 October 2005
6/10

Did someone forget to pay the editing bill? I wonder what kind of stuff they're teaching in the schools now, because you used to have to know two to four Romance languages just to get in grad school, let alone do any postdoctoral work. But it's France, so, O.K. "Timeline" gives a historical basis for disagreement in Franco-American relations by sending an American back in time to cause the problems.

These unbiased and logical minds spend less than ten minutes between discovering the time machine and getting into it. Only one of them doesn't go, I guess he's the "control". The compelling argument the cruel "suit" uses to get them to go is their comparative superiority to navigate the time due to their knowledge. A dark secret lurks….But their vanity shields them from questioning what went wrong. The beginning scenes in the Dark Ages are horrible. Someone saved a few cents on the special effects budget, it's just a bunch of theatrics then a cut to the river they supposedly appeared in. Then they walk through a forest that looks suspiciously like the Hollywood Hills. The "manor" they've been studying looks like a paper maché shack thrown up on hockey sticks.

None of these modern day scientists know Karate or Tae-Bo, have any money/valuables or relations back then, but show up in a group anonymously in the Dark Ages and expect to go about their business unnoticed. Because they've studied the Dark Ages and people did that all the time. None of them can defend themselves worth a damn. Nobody brings a Red Cross pocketknife. They shift from egging each other on like rednecks on "The Family Feud" to panicked hysteria and physical attacks regardless of nearby threats. In one scene the professor's son leaps at their guide, although the English soldiers searching for them are directly less than fifty feet away. The script gets so bad though you can't blame them for forgetting. When the group yammer at the corporate Satan for sending the Professor back to the dangerous Dark Ages, a few lines later one of them demands to know why two marines are coming along.

The marines don't do too well, they get offed seconds into the trip. Obviously Dark Ages behavior wasn't in his Seals Training module. One of them scurries like a churl wide-eyed before oncoming horses and gawps at his pursuer until he bites it. The other takes a few arrows before ripping the stop off a grenade. Evidently he could pocket a grenade but an arrow-proof vest wasn't a good idea. Transiting through the portal (all done with smoke and mirrors, check) the entire lab is exploded. The CEO is shocked, shocked, that even while he'll evade every law and invent new ones to avoid, his time travellers have tried some portable life insurance. What the evil greedy czar of business doesn't tell them is that the DNA reconstruction process has a few bugs in it… Supposedly several of our crew should be giants, much larger than the average men of that era, but even the "warriors" look like some guys plucked off the lot coffeehouse. Lord Oliver's lady isn't even accorded one shot, just shuffled aside off screen. The Manor parlor looks darker than a stable. The point of view is hard to follow, it strays from broadly scenic to capture the vast panorama…to broadly scenic to capture the vast two-shot and the actors leaving frame awkwardly.

Ah, the accents. Marton Csokas (XXX, The Fellowship of the Rings) is half Czech, half Australian, and does a two-faced combo English drawl/American whine. Gerard Butler, (Reign of Fire/Phantom of the Opera) who I thought was Irish, pretends to be Scottish. Anna Friel, an English actress, plays a Frenchwoman. How she understands Butler I have no idea. Frances O'Connor, the wonder of "Mansfield Park", plays a shallow and not-too-bright archaeologist who is "obsessed" with her work. Connolly's Irish accent is never explained. David Thewlis, (English) plays the corrupt American twerp. Lord Oliver, the English chief pillager, sounds authentically English by way of the Tottenham Court Road. The French Lord, Arnault, is played by legitimately French(and half Irish) Lambert Wilson, (the Matrix III, Sahara) who outclasses them all…You may remember him from some Calvin Klein ads he did whispering about "Obsession". You'll know the better actors in this movie by the amount of hoods, helmeting, and hair they have dragged across their face. You can't blame them for hiding…..

This movie seemed to be a first class assembly and it was as if the main actor, possibly Sean Connery or Harrison Ford, had dropped out from playing the Professor, Lord Oliver, or the CEO, and they made the movie anyway. Certainly the script couldn't have been an incentive. Michael Crichton must have bawled all night after seeing this. I read the book and it's as if they warped parts of it on an acid trip and other parts at 16 rpm. What other reason can there be? What, Michael Caine got choosy suddenly after 40 years? You know you're in trouble when an actioner with this much talent comes out and the over-the-line name in the trailer is….Paul Walker. That's right, white-bread, empty-eyed, one dimensional Paul Walker. He dresses Mervyn's. He looks 12.

You usually tune into a movie like "Timeline" to see the villain get his comeuppance. I kept browsing the credits curiously to see who was to blame…and then it appeared…a name from the Dark Ages like a flaming firebrand of fear, hysteria, and damage… Michael Ovitz.

2 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
whose fantasy is this anyway? Did planned parenthood fund it?, 20 July 2005
1/10

Women's liberation steps back thru the looking glass.

City slicker Helen works at a top Big Apple ad agency managing and manipulating New York Press and print talent while living the single life. The butt of envious remarks by her jealous sisters (and the admiring glances of their husbands) she hides her invisible desires to be a suburban housemom amid the dim life of New York exclusive nightclubs, designer clothes, and A-list contacts and company.

When her sister dies and she inherits her two nieces and a nephew, she becomes the only woman in New York that can't get a nanny, find a school, and organize dinner for four. Since Helen is played by Goldie's Hawn's daughter (the same woman who produced such lib-forward entertainment as Private Benjamin, Protocol, and the First Wives Club)and looks like a million dollars, it's even more incredible this character wouldn't have help falling over her threshold in every shape and form.

Since my impression of New Yorkers is that they use such issues as social chatter and prestige fodder, it's even harder to believe such charges wouldn't put her in the mainstream. But Helen must pay society's cost for her promiscuousness by the unenforced celibacy and unemployment immediately imminent with the charge of children.

And then there's the religion: the only answer to a panicked Helen's dilemmas come when she invokes God. That's right, with kids come religion. And suddenly instead of cover models and New York's hottest club residents Helen gets a minister, who strangely finds Helen more attractive than any of the Bronx/Brooklyn moms pushing brownies in his direction.

Helen never realises the kids turn into complete brats the minute they can get away with it, and the oldest daughter goes from seeking her cool aunt's approval to hooking up with the most dangerous boy in the hood. Instead of leaving the kids at the saintly sister's for a week, a sudden trip at work prompts her on the slide to losing her job.

I'm sure bible-thumping wives that attend church regularly will rent this movie over and over again to pay into the belief that Kate Hudson needs to lose her size 2 figure and worldly lifestyle and be sentenced to a lifetime of coming last to merit the care of children.

The sentiments in this movie are so ugly and misogynisitic I can't believe anybody would pay to see kids whimper their aunt out of a decent life with their whinyness and watch a woman lose everything she's worked for because somebody's elses mommyhood shut down.

This movie also has Joan Cusack as a smug woman so obsessed with her own selfsaintedness she can't offer real assistance and support to her sister, even when she obviously needs it, and would rather watch her fail than support her.

AKA (2002)
4 out of 10 people found the following review useful:
Better than Ripley or old-time Vanity Fair, 29 June 2005
10/10

This movie is better than Ripley or old-time Vanity Fair (both from British writers) because the last tinge of the seventies had that "maybe you can be anyone" potential still being born. This is also a true story. This contrasts against England's "birth first, achievements second" class structure still alive today. A handsome young man might very well follow "Lord' Gryffoyn"'s road every day. What are also allowed to see is the pathos and confusion that whips and buttresses the choices behind such pathways.

I think my favorite moment is when privileged Lord Glendenning tries to Charlton Heston his way to rifling Thatcher off the TV screen, and when he belittles her, across the room, an obviously Labor class guy, "Lord Gryffoyn" watches wide eyed, while the third member of their troika mocks her hair.

So much political correctness has washed out current cinema, it's eye opening to see gay life the way it was in New-York/Britain/France capitals among the upper class. Practically a history lesson in class consciousness, this movie roves from the main character's motivation, to shifting maturity, to the shifting sands underneath and around him.

Most of the reviews I've read fasten on the split screen as topic and almost ignore the film as a whole. The version i downloaded had split screen in areas, but not a jaw dropping medium at all, merely a savvy cinematic comment on the media of the press.

What I found most entertaining was that the "slut" character was for once played by a man. It's tired to see every floozy and hustler portrayed as a woman, Youngblood Hills really energizes the film with his attempts to work two men who are so chained by their secrets they are immune to his lures, and his desperate "fixes" only precipitate more conflict and pushed them into negating him. His character's attempts to be used by these men and thus be used by him backfire in ways we can see through even when he can't.

An excellent film to watch, for discussion, study, and enjoyment of cinema.


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