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I've Got a Secret (2006)
Where's Kitty Carlisle when you need her?
This tacky reproduction of a great show is annoying. Who are these panelists? What is their claim to fame? Why is the broad such a loudmouth and why are the men so feminine?
I realize that I am mixing shows with my Kitty Carlisle reference in that she was a panelist on To Tell The Truth, but allow me to make another off-kilter reference. I think that Dorothy Kilgallen had a vision of the future and what she saw was this show -- so she popped a few extra Secanols.
Can you imagine Betsy Palmer watching a guy break pencils with his ass? Can you imagine Bill Cullen watching Betsy Palmer watch a guy break pencils with his ass?
Henry Morgan would have walked off and so will I.
Miss Lettie and Me (2002)
A movie only a plastic surgeon could love.
In the future, any closeup of Burt Reynolds should come with a disclaimer or at least a warning from Vincent Price. This fact is made especially more frightful in this film because Burt's character has no reason to exist in this story. I mean...why frighten children for no reason?
Ugh, what am I doing home on a Monday afternoon watching this horror show on Lifetime TV? Between Mary Tyler Moore and Burt Reynolds, this movie had me in stitches -- too bad most of them were behind Mary and Burt's ears and eyelids.
This movie was made for simpletons and first year plastic surgery residents. I'm sorry but it's just terrible. The story is contrived, the acting is dull and the payoff is predictable. I even sensed a little racism in that the African American characters who figure largely in the script, seem to be wrought from a 1930s movie. I mean, it's nice that they make Charles Robinson and Irma Hall wiser than the white folk but they're still depicted as "help" -- geez!
The only thing nice I can say about this movie is that the lamb is cute.
The Fountainhead (1949)
Boy does Ayn Rand like to hear herself talk. If silent movies could talk, this is how they would have sounded.
One of the biggest mistakes in film history was allowing Ayn Rand to write the screenplay adaptation for her own novel. Boy does she like to hear herself talk or what? There is not one line of dialogue in this film that isn't overly dramatic and patently didactic. Rand does for dialogue what Norma Desmond does for mannerisms, except in the case of Norma Desmond there's an excuse -- she's nuts. Rand as a screenwriter just comes off as an egomaniac and she proves it with every over-stretched word. Even Hamlet would have told her to shut up.
Rand somehow manages to make Gary Cooper and Patricia Neil totally unlikeable in their respective roles. The whole thing is a handbook for art-deco dialogue as a dying language. Okay, Howard won't compromise his art and Dominique is a tortured chick -- we get it already, lady. Massey's newspaper mogul character, on the other hand, is great and he plays with the fecund dialogue like a little boy plays with a puppy. Too bad he's in the wrong movie.
I now have a new nightmare. I'm dead and I run into Ayn Rand at a celestial cocktail party. She corners me in a conversation and, oh my god, she sounds just like this movie.
Estelle Getty gives a great performance as Yoda and only Ed Wood could have directed it better.
Now that I have your attention, please allow to me to blaspheme this most recent Star Wars as the single worst motion picture ever made. It's bad enough to be just "bad" but this movie and all the hype around it manages to transcend badness -- entering into the realm of pure, subliminal marketing evil.
Let's start with why it's just bad. The acting is beyond atrocious. The story is thread-bare. The supporting cast members (robot, puppets, droids) are silly and bolstered by schticky, unfunny, uninspired and smarmy dialogue. It's almost like Bruce Valanche worked on the script. <--- This is not a compliment. Valanche's humor is tacky, unsophisticated and Catskillian. This movie takes that angle and plays it to the hilt.
The movie is evil because millions of people go to see it as though they were hypnotized. There is nothing about this movie which translates into good. It represents everything that is wrong with American films and the anti-American people who make them. Mind you, I am usually to the left on most issues but you have to see this for what it is -- JUNK! Don't be a sucker.
Teach your children and yourself to have taste and sophistication, neither of which will start with this horrible movie.
Growing Up Gotti (2004)
There's Something About Victoria
What is it about Victoria Gotti? She's got something doesn't she? I mean, she must have something, because she's become a household name long after all that Mafia and FBI stuff.
I remember her from, years ago, when she blurted out to a local newsman, "My father is the last of the Mohicans." Mind you, she said this as she was getting into her Cadillac and it was classic.
I knew then and there that she was not going to wind up making marinara sauce for the guys. She was an American original.
So, after years of wiretaps and heavy-handed prosecution, the whole government thing was one-upped by Victoria's quick-witted and memorable sound bites. Her off-handed remarks are more or less the Rosetta Stone for anyone who might find themselves thrust into the national spotlight for infamous reasons.
She's so darn intelligent and savvy, yet she surrounds herself with such dopey people? Luigi? What's his purpose? I hate to think that he's some comic relief thrown in by the producers. The guys she gets to chaperone her sons are morons -- she gets rid of them but it's always after the fact. Her gay friend is on the ball -- why not a little more about him? Yes, I like Victoria -- she's a good mother and a good role model for women in general. Don't bother me with Mafia stuff or that Daughter-of-a-Mafia-Don baloney -- watch the show and see what it means to be a mother with ultra energetic sons. Smart women and good mothers can come from anywhere -- don't watch this show with prejudice.
Victoria never hijacked a truck, but she might hijack your heart. Damien
I Married a Princess (2005)
3rd string actor marries 4th rate princess to make a fifth rate show.
So Katherine Oxenberg (essentially an extra on Dynasty) is a princess, and her husband IS Casper Van Dien, and they have a bunch of kids -- and this makes a show? I don't think so, but LIFETIME TV seems to have sunk some real money into this royal jelly.
It seems to me that both of their publicists were working overtime and this was the best thing they could con out of a network executive.
The episode I saw had something to do with Tsunami relief. The Van Dien's were formulating a guest list for their fund raiser. Names like Rod Stewart, Nicollette Sheridan and Courtney Cox were thrown around but, in the end, they got Fran Drescher -- she's okay in my book but not big enough to cover a tidal wave.
All in all they are attractive people who seem to be VERY good parents who have really good intentions -- they just wound up with a stupid reality show. I think they should just live their lives without TV cameras -- nobody needs to know that they're nice people. I mean, a princess doesn't need all this attention, right? Damien
Primetime Glick (2001)
C'mon, we all know Glick is Merv Griffin.
When I was a kid, a broadcast of SCTV would only get my attention if Martin Short was the guy on the screen. Even today my tastes have not wavered. The only reason I am thinking of getting TEVO is so that I can punch in Martin's name and take in a month's worth of his talent when nobody is there to bother me.
Martin Short is without a doubt the funniest human being who has ever lived. His Jiminy Glick character is especially funny, and obviously so "inside" most people don't even get it...or do they?
Martin Short is the only heterosexual man who can make Bette Davis and Katherine Hepburn impersonations funny for us straight men. Please don't take this as a homophobic view, rather, it is testament to Short's incredible talent. He's just funnier than a conventional drag queen or a female impersonator. He does what he does, and his straight audience laughs because it's funny, while his gay audience falls off their chairs because it's so hilariously campy and cruel.
Today I watched an episode of Primetime Jiminy and watched Short do a reenactment of Sal Mineo's murder with marionettes. Imagine that...a famous gay murder played out with cheap puppets -- it was so patently gay, yet only a small percent of those watching (and laughing) would understand how horribly and morbidly funny it really was.
C'mon, we all know Jiminy Glick is Merv Griffin -- it's so beyond funny because Martin Short is essentially a straight drag queen.
Was Michael Moore in charge of Historical Accuracy?
Oliver (I hate America) Stone has done for the ancient world what Michael Moore has done for journalistic integrity -- make up a story to fit the masses, edit it the way you think things ought to have been, and turn a quick buck while living out your malcontented life in wealth and splendor with ticket sales receipts subliminally wrought from the pay checks of Red State, Jesus Land folks. That's a bad run-on sentence, I know, but it was required to describe a very bad scam.
Let me make no bones about it, I DON'T LIKE OLIVER STONE and I didn't like Alexander. It's a cheesy, flimsy, spaghetti-westernish waste of time.
Yes, this is my idea of a review. I went into the film expecting to see John F, Kennedy drive by the Macedonian School Book Depository -- at least Stone edited that part out -- but c'mon, we know he must have filmed it.
I watched this film today. It aired on WE (Women's Television) -- I am not a woman, but that fact does not disqualify me from knowing that this film is brilliantly directed, brilliantly acted and brilliantly written. Why do I get the feeling that DEEPLY has been relegated to "Chick Flick" TV-land? In my opinion it's far better than any film I've seen at my local Multiplex this year -- far far better.
I am not familiar with Sheri Elwood's work as a director, but if this is what she can do on a semi-low budget, bring in the big guns, fellas, because this woman has mega-talent. Don't you powerbrokers out there in Hollywood take the time to watch films like this? Where do you think artistically gifted and talented directors come from -- NYU Film School? Think again and do your homework.
This movie gets a 9 out of 10 -- one point lost because of the confusing accents. Dunst sounds like Scarlet O'Hara after she'd been stranded on of the Channel Islands for a few decades.
The Village (2004)
Lifetime Television for Women? Yes. Blockbuster? No.
I'm going to try to do this without any spoilers...but be warned that my critique alone might lead one to conclusions.
My primary gripe about this movie is that it plays like a Lifetime Television For Women flick -- something akin to COLD MOUNTAIN without the budget and WITNESS without the awesome story -- and throw in a little ALIEN for Sigourney's sake.
Keep these things in mind and reflect upon them AFTER you've seen the film. You'll see what I mean.
1) What was the purpose of the Pilgrim-esquire grammar and manners? Even when Ivy learns the truth from her father, why does he still use that silly, proper, Amishy cadence? And when the elders speak amongst themselves, why do they not revert to normal phrasing? It would have been a cagey hint wouldn't it? Isn't that what plot twists are all about -- the oh-so-subtle hints?
2) Adrien Brody does an annoying job of over-acting. I know it's hard to find a real village idiot who also happens to be an acting coach, but he really should have toned it down. Even an idiot would have known that.
3) Making Ivy blind was a cop-out. The old, "hysterical blind person stumbling through the lonely woods" thing is pretty tired. I imagine this was an attempt to offer us a sense of claustrophobia ( something the director did fabulously in SIGNS) but it just doesn't work here.
4) The pay-off, not that there is one, is feeble and forced. By the time Ivy dispatches one of the unspeakables, anyone with a brain has an idea what is going to happen -- but you still wonder if there might be something less overt. I sat there and thought of at least three different twisty, awesome possibilities that might lie ahead to delight us -- but alas, there were none to be found.
If I saw this film on The USA Network or Lifetime, I would have thought it was pretty good, but since I've been seeing trailers for this big-budget, summer blockbuster for nearly a year, I was profoundly frustrated.
Much like the character's life choices in the village of Covington, the whole thing was a noble effort. So, instead of signing off with a nasty poke at the director/writer, I'll politely say, night, Night.