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12 reviews in total 
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"Selfie" (2014)
36 out of 46 people found the following review useful:
My Fair Lady, 21st century style, 10 September 2014

As others have commented here, I'd seen the title listed before and had absolutely no interest in seeing this--until I saw it starred Karen Gillian and John Cho.

In watching the pilot I was delighted to discover this is a modern adaptation of My Fair Lady, without the singing and expanded to a series. Whether or not the writers can manage to make it work in this format is yet to be seen, but the pilot looks good. Gillian and Cho have a high standard to live up to with their modern versions of characters popularized by Audrey Hepburn and Rex Harrison, but these two may actually be able to pull it off. I don't believe there are many performers today that could.

In short, if you like Gillian, Cho, My Fair Lady, or Pygmalion (the original story on which My Fair Lady was based,) you have to see this show. If you are unfamiliar with any of them, check it out anyway, you may find the time watching it well worth it.

Honestly though, the worst thing I find in this show is the title "Selfie". It turned me off and I wouldn't have bothered watching had it not been for the stars. Rebranded, this show could be a winner.

13 out of 21 people found the following review useful:
Betty White's funniest work to date, 6 April 2012

After only watching the first couple of episodes, i find myself wiping the tears of laughter from my eyes as i climb up off the floor from laughing so hard.

Not all the skits are hilarious--White has enough foresight to back-load the majority of the funnier skits towards the end of the show, while the earlier ones that don't quite get there are bracketed by light enough bits that its hard to notice.

The team she's working with here is outstanding. I have no doubt that Lorne Michaels is kicking himself for not grabbing these talented performers for SNL years ago.

After watching the first episode, i found myself wanting to see some bits taking advantage of the youthful misconception that age equals frailty (in areas other than sex--which misconception White and her team successfully challenge.)

There are a number of world class athletes out there that happen to be seniors. I'd love to see White take advantage of their skills and talents to really challenge the younger generation's world view. The skateboard skit in the second episode does this somewhat, but i'd like to see this go a lot further.

These first couple of episodes are real comedy gold. The biggest question it poses to me is: Can she keep it up?

0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
This Scene Deserves an Emmy Nomination, 17 March 2012

I really like this show, even when I haven't been drinking.

In this episode, (as with others,) we see 3 parallel plot lines: the first dealing with the hypocritical persecution of 'morals' crimes, a second dealing with the 'rights' of public education vs. the disruptive effects of a single student's medical problems and the final dealing with an out of courtroom appeal for justice by Harry (Kathy Bates) to DA REMEC (Jean Smart).

In the initial plot line, Joel Bryant delivers the upright, justice driven defense attorney we have come to expect from him. His antagonist, ADA Cruickshank (Matt Cook) delivers a comparable level of believability in his portrayal of the hypocritical moralist. Sam Doumit delivers the role of Maggie Buchanan (the crux character of the issue,) adequately.

In the secondary plot line, we see Harry (Bates) going head to head with Mrs. Drake (IMDb uncredited actress) whom delivers a very credible protective parent role. Mr. Drake (also IMDb uncredited,) without a single line, delivers the role demanded by his scenes. Behind the parents and the lawyers, Natalie (Hailey Sole) performs the believable seizure-like facial contortions we have come to expect from the creepy characters this young actress has portrayed in the past.

The tertiary plot line really wins this episode though. Fans of the series are well acquainted with the antagonism between Bates and Smart's characters. In this episode, that relationship is taken to the penultimate extreme demanded by the characters. Without a spoiler alert it is very difficult to express what an odd, yet character demanded turn, their relationship takes.

Suffice it to say that the last five minutes of this vid, particularly Smart's "But we should," short monologue us deserving of an Emmy nomination at the absolute least. Smart shines in this scene as few performers do these days.

Travellers (2011)
5 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
Not a boxing film, Not a biker film, Not Deliverance UK., 25 February 2012

On the face of this film, it starts out looking like a UK version of Deliverance (sans the banjo duel). About halfway through the film it develops into something quite different.

Some of the bad reviews here have commented that this was a poor Boxing film. It does have ONE boxing scene, but that doesn't make it a boxing film. Another reviewer made a similar comment about motorcycles—look people, just because there's an element of something in a film doesn't mean that film is about that one thing for which you seem to be looking. Honestly I think those critics should stick to their day job because obviously they don't know the first thing about film.

This is not a big budget production, but I think the final product is on par with most of what's coming out of Hollywood these days—no worse and no better. It won't win any awards for cinematography, but neither does it abuse the camera in trying to tell the story as do so many low budget films.

There was a bit more gore than suits my taste, more than I thought the story needed, but still it was a decent watch. If you are looking for a boxing film, or a motorcycle film, or Deliverance UK style, you will be disappointed. If you go into it without those expectations, you might actually enjoy it.

2 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
In favor of democracy, 16 January 2012

109 reviews have been posted IMDb prior to this one. 9 thought it was a good film. 2 thought it was the most hilarious comedy they'd seen in years.

What I'd like to know is, "why is that 10% listed first?" I can only assume that these early "good" reviews were written by persons whom would benefit personally from this film succeeding.

The balance of the reviews seem to agree with mine. This movie is a waste of your time and money.

Although I found myself continually thinking during the movie "The Blair Witch Exorcism." Honestly it felt like the film was 6 parts Blair witch, 3 parts rosemary's baby and one part exorcist--that one part only because exorcism is the core theme behind the story.

Like many poorly made films, this one places a preponderance of scenes inside in dark rooms and basements. This allows inept directors and writers to hide their inadequacies behind an ill deserved claim of artistic license. This film is neither artistic, nor scary. The best that it manages to deliver is a "creepy" feeling throughout--with a few really loud screams and a couple of noteworthy contortions. If you want a good scare, check out some classic Hitchcock--obviously the creators of this film have never seen the kind of real scare Hitchcock could deliver on film.

If you absolutely loved the Blair witch project, you'll like this film--maybe. The faux Documentary worked for Blair exclusively because it hadn't been done before. Well, this film doesn't have that advantage. The shaky camera work detracts from what could have been a good storyline--can't these directors figure out that too much of one thing isn't good? The same persistent camera work detracted from cloverfield much in the same way that the long shot detracted from Children of Men. either of these types of shots can work well in small doses, perhaps even in moderation, but don't do it through the whole film.

There were a few scenes in this film that DIDN'T use the archival type footage, probably because they couldn't figure out how to do internal auto scenes with it. This of course disrupts whatever suspension of disbelief the audience has managed to maintain because the camera work in these few shots is so dissimilar to the rest of the footage that it's painfully obvious that the shots are non-archival.

Overweighed by the horrible cinematography, it's difficult to discern the actors and actresses performance. I imagine they, more than the theatre audiences will be horrified at this movie. They may live in fear for years for what this film will do to their careers.

The Awakening (2011/I)
17 out of 43 people found the following review useful:
Great acting, lousy movie., 11 January 2012

Each of the performers in this film really manage to carry the viewer to the fine nuances of the emotional conflict of the characters.

Beyond that, there is little of value in this film.

As a thriller it really doesn't quite make it. A recently deceased chicken has more unexpected jumps than does this plot line. The film did manage to wrench one minor jump out of me (after three quarters of an hour of waiting for it,) giving me some minor hope that the story could still be saved. Don't be fooled, that's it. A couple other scenes do manage to get that goose-flesh started, but it's far too little to make up for the rest of the film.

There were also a couple shots I can only assume were intended to inspire that horror movie jump, but instead only managed to deliver a confusing visual spiccato effect.

The storyline starts out well, defining the heroine as a strong logical woman. Unfortunately, as the story develops the character is revealed to instead be weak, stupid, emotionally unstable, and prone to having sex with men she barely knows for no reason at all. In toto, this gives the impression that the authors Volk and Murphy believe the idea of a strong woman is a myth and suggests the two may harbor misogynistic tendencies rivaling that of Piccasso.

The sex scene comes off as a contrivance to bolster the ratings. Why do these characters suddenly have sex? There is minimal suggestion of any physical attraction between the two, and the act itself is preceded neither by flirtation nor any suggestion by either character that they were physically interested in each other. They just suddenly jumped into bed.

Granted, the storyline did incorporate a couple of romantic style scenes. (Please note the term style. These scenes were not actually romantic in any way.) Far too much of the film was wasted as a buildup for the romantic plateau, which leaves the viewer wondering if they're watching a horror movie or a romance. I felt it failed miserably in both genres.

In short, I didn't buy it. I recommend you don't either.

The Double (2011/I)
17 out of 44 people found the following review useful:
An absolute waste of your time and the producers money, 10 January 2012

Its rare for Hollywood to churn out a movie this bad on this big of a budget, which just reinforces that old adage that money doesn't buy everything.

I always try to find the best in a film, but it's next to impossible with a film this bad. The characters are thin, the plot line weak and the actors unconvincing.

As a thriller, it's dead. If you use cocaine during the film, you might experience some slight elevation in heart rate, but this film is so tedious even that may fail to do the trick.

One of the major problems with the film is the dated storyline. Evil Russian spies sold up until the beginning of the 21st century, but the viewing audience today needs a more contemporary threat. Had the story been set in the 1980s, it would have worked better.

Perhaps my criticisms of the actors is a bit harsh, but they all can and have done far better.

In Mr. Jones, Gere provided an unparalleled performance demonstrating the depths of passion he is capable of delivering. In this film, I got the impression that he just showed up for work on Monday and was going through the (minimum) motions required to get through the day. I really expect more from him in his upcoming films.

Sheen's character was on screen far too little for a man of his talents, and likewise I don't understand why Odette Annabele got such a high billing when she only had a minor role in 3 scenes with a comparable number of lines.

Topher Grace's performance fell only slightly below his norm, but the failure here was more the poorly written script than that of the actor.

so here's the good part: I'd like to nominate this film for "The Golden Rasberry" (Razzies) as the worst film of the year. I half believe that the only reason this film was even released--as an an attempt to get that award.

Clonehunter (2009) (V)
4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Not so much tacky as low budget, 4 January 2012

If you, like I, turned to this movie expecting a tacky sci-fi story based solely on the title, you'll find yourself somewhat pleasantly disappointed. This film delivers a surprisingly good storyline, hampered largely by the low budget available for production. The low budget is particularly evident in the special effects, which demonstrate some creative problem solving to deliver the large number of effects required by the script.

The script could have used a bit more editing. While it does have a couple of holes in it, none are so gaping as the obvious one in the award winning "The Kings Speech," and these holes are largely compensated for by the occasional good line and unexpected plot twists. The same holds true for both the cinematography and editing as well.

While there is the occasional really interesting shot—such as the drunk/drugged shot, there are also a few really bad shots which should have been cut, or re-shot.

It's difficult to critique the actors' performance, or even that of the director for these reasons. Just about every scene left me feeling like they ended each filming session when they ran out of film for retakes—or that they only had enough for one or two takes.

But the storyline is a real saving grace for this film. I can't help but think that had they the resources available to the blockbuster films, that this film could have outperformed them at the box office.

A little tacky, yes. A little campy, yes. Check it out anyway, it's an interesting watch.

Catch .44 (2011)
10 out of 25 people found the following review useful:
a drug heist gone bad turns psychodrama, 2 December 2011

A drug heist gone bad turns into the longest Mexican standoff in movie history, which serves as backdrop for an inter-character psychodrama.

The strong back-story is told through flashbacks and a progressive repetition of a traumatic shootout scene, which is used to establish two of the moderately well fleshed out main characters but leaves the balance of the cast notably lacking in character development.

Forest Whitaker's command of his scenes dominate the movie. By contrast, Bruce Willis's portrayal of his thinly developed character is a bit underplayed—not the best movie of either of these greats by far.

Malin Akerman however, really puts a feather in her cap for this one. Her character "Tes," ain't Lauri Jupiter. This film serves to demonstrate how wide this lady's range is by comparison to her early works on screen.

The balance of the cast, each of notable talent, were sadly not given the opportunity to demonstrate the full extent of their skills. I was particularly disappointed with the amount of material Shea Whiggham was given to work with. For now I suppose, we'll have to suffice with Boardwalk Empire to see the range of this actor.

The score is worthy of note, with a single exception—the plug for Bruce Willis's 1980's singing debut was unforgivable and weakened the strength of both the score and the movie overall.

Overall though, in spite of the flaws, this movie is worth watching. You shouldn't walk away feeling that you've lost 90 minutes of your life that you'll never get back, and it's a better film than a lot of what I've seen coming out of Hollywood this year.

0 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Best "Planet of the Apes" since 1972, 10 August 2011

Long time die-hard fans of the original movie series will find all those questions answered here that have gone unanswered for so long; what was the source of the disease that killed off all the dogs and cats? Where did gorillas learn how to ride horses? Why are the apes more humanoid than those in our current world? These same fans will of course be treated to another "unexpected" delivery of that famous line, "Get your stinking paws off me, you damn dirty ape!" All of the elements planets of the apes fans expect can be found in this movie, including a reference to Taylor's spaceship for those observant enough to catch it.

Young people unfamiliar with the original series, or those who have only been exposed to the 2001 Wahlberg fiasco should be pleasantly surprised by this movie which delivers the same storyline and message about the fragility of society with an even more plausible sequence of events than Wilson and Serling delivered with the original 1968 film.

Although this film's storyline is dominated by the incredibly lifelike cgi Caesar, the roles played by Franco and Pinto provide a positive human contrast to the oppression apes suffer at the whims of corporations, government, police, and evil animal handler Tom Felton. (Two thumbs up Tom, best bad guy yet this year.) Supporting actor John Lithgow eclipses all the other human actors in this film as he tends to in all the films in which he works. You can't blame him though if the others can't keep up with his level of skill.

I do have 2 down criticisms of this film. First of all, what's with all the breaking glass? If these apes are super intelligent, wouldn't they realize that broken glass can cut you? (Why didn't any of the apes charging through windows get cut?) Were the directors trying to Make us Lose our sense of disbelief? My other criticism is with the music in the final scene. Whereas Doyle's music worked well through most of the film—in parts almost reminiscent of the film "Born Free" (with full orchestration,)—the final minute of the film following the last line deflated the entire film. IMO this 'deflation' was more due to the musical backdrop than due to the cinematography.

Overall though, Great movie. You want to see this one.

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