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SLVSteve

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6 reviews in total 
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4 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
For the locals..., 3 June 2008
2/10

For those of us that lived thru those weeks of filming in town and around the Valley - lest we not forget the tedious days of road closures and "film-making". As a reminder to those that live here - locales include Boulder Creek, Bonny Doon, Davenport, Big Basin. etc. The bank was the BC firehouse; chase scenes included Moon Drive off Hwy 236, Empire Grade Rd, and Hwy 1.

Production: Jeffrey Jones was the most approachable, Matt Broderick was above us all - even back then. As far as the film goes - a joke of a script and even a bigger laugh regarding acting and plot - but who cares at this level. A nice time capsule for those that enjoy our coast and valley scenery.

Additional notes; Joe's Bar (Jed's Tavern in the film), original name of the film was Welcome to Buzzsaw - the Old Erba's parking lot was the town square, the backyard shots were off of Grove Street in Boulder Creek; turn off the thinking cap and see a few actors in their early days.

The Take (2007)
9 out of 30 people found the following review useful:
Authentic yet realistic without fear..., 3 June 2008
8/10

The depictions and descriptions of the film can be read on numerous reviews here and elsewhere - but I have to say most of these writs seem determined to discredit a good film. I truly believe most can agree this is one of the best pieces of fiction best paralleling reality for L.A. filmed since (and including) Crash, Harsh Times, Training Day, etc.

Watching the deleted scenes, docu on filming, listening to commentary, and related media, they all reveal a true sense of wanting to make a non-Hollywood film with succession and an honest feeling of REALITY. Reading thru several armored car inside-jobs this film reveals a very authentic feel that deserves more credit than it is being given.

Outstanding performances by Cannavale, Perez and Gibson proving small films can bring the best out of someone. Regardless of the negative and technical reviews written about the end scenes and cultural inaccuracies - I have to give this film one of the most realistic portrayals I have seen in years centering around a man that is losing everything that makes him a man - and finds a way to regain it without being Jason Bourne or James Bond.

A worthwhile film that deserves a rent or maybe even a purchase for those from the areas of LA they film in…if anything - the sex scene is probably one of the most dedicated I have watched in some time - but at the same time shows a realism that mainstream cinema has missed for years…I will be recommending this title in my store for those looking for an authentic urban film.

17 out of 34 people found the following review useful:
Beware if looking for quality content..., 1 June 2008
3/10

What will attract most people to this film is the likes of Livingston and MCD, but I will have to warily warn those who might expect a grand film of cult acting and "dark" irony - avoid this unless maybe intoxicated. Even after watching this I think nothing less of these two great actors and people - they probably did not see/know the entire product before it was finished.

To describe the story would waste the reader's time - plainly stated - a mess of love, betrayal, bisexualism, incarcerated narration, transgendered prostitution, and a few other wannabe intellectual storytelling. Schneider seemed miscast but played his role - BUT JCM - most people's favorite from Scrubs played a short but demented role (that I am sure he will neglect to tell his boy about) that I think will lead to the most fast-forwarded parts of the film - he played just like Dr. Cox - except he was begging for and actually getting sex.

Probably, this will be the most numerically laden A-list cast in a movie (in this time period) that will wish they had nothing to do with it. Most of my customers know how I review films and this is definitely one of those that I would say to skip unless they are having a few drinks with buddies and looking for some flashy background visuals - soundtrack is non-existent and the storyline is a mess of garbage that would be best followed while having a party where no one is really paying attention anyway…if anything - MCD looks like he is between takes of Sin City 1 and 2 - and RL had to fill time between making quality films.

Gave a few stars just on the cast alone.

4 out of 10 people found the following review useful:
Offending the masses at its best in recent memory..., 31 May 2008
6/10

I very rarely write about films like this and have had little chance to discuss them on my radio segment reviewing films - but I had to give this film some time (as it has apparently languished for a few years in non-release hell). This film in itself lampoons part of what I do (film critique) - and I have to say they hit it perfectly - best portrayal of film critics I have seen in years (that of pretentious and idiotic snobs with sleepy stage backgrounds).

The highlights: Kip Kendal's portrayals, Cockpuncher and the Britney parodies. The down-side: half of the skits that portrayed old news elements, the Santa Cruz segment ( I am from SC, and they could have at least filmed it here; plus they could have lampooned this freakish County so much better), skits that dragged on too long, and the deleted scenes not being left in the film.

Most everyone who follows the O site or loves harsh satire will watch this film anyway - but for those wondering or (maybe sitting on the fence) regarding their precious time on this style humor - I would say give it a watch; fast forward at times will ease the pain of what would seem a waste of celluloid, but the laugh out loud moments make for an intellectual eye-candy fest that exceeds all of the last parody films by a landslide.

Please enjoy the comedy for Steven Seagal (as scary as that sounds) - he makes the film with his Cockpuncher routines - exceeds any self-lampooning media I have ever seen. Being a Bay Area film critic - I most noticeable saw our main actor as Buck Helm 15 years ago (the Cypress rescue on 880) - Len Cariou is a class act and he pulls the film past being par and into believable - nice work; if you follow his titles - this is his best. You will get bored at times, and you will laugh out loud at least twice or more, but I think this will offend just enough people to make the boards here buzz for at least a few weeks.

Graves End (2005)
2 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Worth the watch for local residents..., 8 February 2007
6/10

Living locally and finally getting to see this title years later makes this a nice time capsule piece for the San Lorenzo Valley. Content-wise this is a standard B-movie suspense thriller with some slight horror thrown in to add some depth. Eric Roberts, Daniel Roebuck and Mr. X (X-Files fame) give some decent performances in this story of an FBI agent tracking down some "missing" felons in the small rural town of Graves End. Through the course of several plot twists and murders we discover who the bad guys really are and who the saviors become.

Regarding the filming locations that come across on screen clearly: the Mountain Store, Bear Creek Rd, River Rd (Brookdale), Blake Hammond Manor, Boulder Creek Fire Station, Boulder Creek downtown, Big Basin area, and the Boy Scout Camp (Bear Creek Rd).

The catch is this film is only available on Region 2 DVD right now. The American distributor would not even give me a date for our region. Probably not worth the cost to get it shipped to you from the EU unless you live here in Santa Cruz County (CA).

11 out of 12 people found the following review useful:
Good independent but mislabeled on DVD art..., 29 May 2006
7/10

Do not let the DVD art convince you it is another Lampoon title with no heart. The cast and overall story actually make for a great independent film that deserves better. As described on the case, it is a story about a man that finds himself truly evaluating his life as he turns 30 in suburbia. To make a long story short, the friendships and themes of the movie are very relevant and believable. And yes, the endless throngs of party scenes, a few naked women, and high school pranks add to the bigger theme of finding a way to be happy with the results of your decisions made in life.

A few of my customers have already set it back down on the shelf thinking it is another dumb party film with no substance, but I have actually been recommending it so now I am going to have to order more. Some people do not like any film with the main character narrating to the viewer while on-screen, but they actually pulled this one off well enough to where you believe the background people are not hearing it.

As to what I meant regarding the DVD art, I have always been frustrated when the DVDs I carry have different art than the actual film represents to try and make it sell...(the cheerleaders are not the ones in the film, the two gals wearing bras and pouring drinks on the back cover - never happens, the hot gal in the inside cover art is never in the film, and "unrated" doesn't mean you see anything more than a standard "R" film).

I think you will laugh quite a few times, hear some decent modern music, affirm the life lessons and pitfalls shown as being very real and the film can make one wish they had friends like that through their own life...and as always with some of these independents (the deleted scene cuts are dated) it shows how long it can take for some of these films to make it to distribution (over three years for this one). Very good ending and be sure to watch through all of the credits.