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Dark City (1998)
What you have to remember with this film is that it is a few years before The Matrix, which you have to acknowledge, but that is where any sort of comparison ends. The sets are great and at the beginning of the film the direction and the mood seems to be promising. Unfortunately, you soon learn the film is badly mis-cast. Rufus Sewell, is unlikeable, Jennifer Connelly does not seen to have a clue what is going on and Kiefer Sutherland is the worst offender, with a daft voice playing the role that should surely have gone to an older actor. Infact, I think Kiefer whould have done a much better job in the lead role, I think he could have done the paranoid thing justice. The plot is baiscally about a group of aliens called "the Strangers" who have come to our planet to experiment on humans to see what makes us tick, changing daily situations overnight. One highlight is Richard O'Brien who is excellent as Mr Hand. The movie rambles on with Rufus trying to figure out what is going on, but by the end you just don't care. It's a shame because you feel this was bit of a labour of love for the director, but the casting is just so wrong.
Resident Evil (2002)
Resident Evil was a suprise in that it is a rather good film. Milla Jovovich helps this by being easy on the eye. The action was fairly well paced with some good scenes that made you jump and it was also great to see a lot of the chracters from the game, we did not see enough of the dogs. I felt where the movie mis-fired slightly was that it had a subplot with Milla's character and few others suffering memory loss. I don't feel it added to the movie just made you think what's going on. I would have prefered a straight forward action film in the vain of Aliens where she takes the role of Jill Valentine. That would have rocked. The ending is left wide open for the sequel, let's just hope that this is the direction they go in for that one.
The Acid House (1998)
I have not read the books, so I don't have that comparison to make, but as a film I found it very interesting. It is divided up into three small stories. The first one is about some bloke who is having a bad day and is turned into a fly by god. The second is about some bloke and his missus living in a flat and the third is the most spaced out one about a guy who takes acid and exchanges bodies with a comical baby. I found this enterataining the humour was quite dark, the acting really good, I think a couple of guys from trainspotting are in it, Tommy and Spud, maybe the third story was just a little bit too long. It's different and worth a watch.
Training Day (2001)
Training Day suprised me in the fact I didn't think it would be up to much. But it does deliver on certain levels. Denzel Washington is excellent as he hams it up in his role that could have been spat out from a generate an Oscar computer program. He does enough to make you dislike him but also understand his view on the world. Ethan Hawke also cuts it as the green new recruit. The supporting cast are a mixed bag while you have Dr Dre who should defintely stick to music producing. Cliff Curtis is excellent in arguably the most gripping scene in the movie. I did enjoy it , but I couldn't help feeling that the films finale was not how the writer had intended and in what seems like the final confrontation with the main chracters isn't and then another scene has been tacked on.
Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (2001)
Needs A Better Tomb To Raid
Having played the computer game. I was looking forward to see if someone had finally done a decent job of making a movie of a video game. The answer in short is NO. Tomb Raider is not an awful film, it's just not a very exciting one. The movie begins with Lara practising against some massive robot, dull, we would have rather seen her completing a mission or something. The story is just not up to scratch, the cut scenes in the computer game have better direction and storyline. Simon West may have made Con Air, a movie that I like, but he does nothing with this, slow mo on action scenes is daft. All the cast apart from Angelina and Chris Barrie are no good. In the end your just willing the film to end. The thing is Angelina is truly superb as Lara, but the film needs a decent story and a director who can at least make us think Lara is vulnerable. Then justice will be done.
3000 Miles to Graceland (2001)
Over two hours of my life I will never get back!
This film is just a big mess. First of all there is the pretentious opening credits with two computer animated scorpions fighting. Kurt Russell rolls up and is promptly bedding Courtney Cox. Then Kevin Costner arrives looking like Italian footballer Paulo Di Canio, with a few other actors who also haven't had a hit in years. Then it's off to Vegas to do a daring heist, so they all dress up as Elvis, because there is a convention in town. This is a real missed opportunity, as they could have done something clever with this, instead the just walk into the casino and open fire! Soon after, a blink and you'll miss it killing of several gang members. Then the film turns into a kind of road movie/get the money back thing. The main problem I found was the director (who you get the feeling may have been bullied by a certain leading actor) does not seen to know what direction he wants the film to go in it varies from daft sentiment (chracters you don't know die and sad music is played), excessive violence, unecessary plot development (let's use some the budget to blow up a petrol station for no real reason) and some laughable bonding particularly by Kurt Russell and the young boy. On the plus side Costner is unlikeable and you always feel Kurt Russell is taking the p*ss, but too many plot concidences and chance happenings of people running into each other in a huge country like the U.S gets too much to take. This unfortunately is a draining movie and your just willing for the end and a certain person to just die. The feeling of indulgence with this film is confirmed with the end credits and a Kevin Costner out take which just sums it all up.
Collateral Damage (2002)
This is Rotten
Spoiler Alert I watched this thinking I wanted a no-brainer. The film had Arnie, is directed by Andrew Davis and it also features Cliff Curtis who is excellent, althought this ain't his finest hour, but it is not his fault. I actually found this film offensive, this is really bad. It begins with Arnie on duty as a fireman doing some heroics and quickly moves on to him spending some embarassing quality time at home with his family, playing with his son's toy spaceship. Anyway, his Son has to go to the doctor's or something and Arnie kindly agress to pick his wife and son up. Unfortunately, Arnie is late and they get blown to pieces by a bomb intended for a diplomat. Arnie is devastated as we see a shot of his son's now melted plastic spaceship. Arnie does a fair bit of moping around then decides because nobody is doing anything about it to embark on some research of his own and before you can spell "Collateral" he's made it all the way to the Colombian drug barons place without any weapons. On the way he saves a woman and her son's life, by merely squaring up to someone. He also bumps into a dazed John Turturro who looks like he's wandered on to the wrong film set. All they way through you keep thinking he should have been dead about ten times by now, but maybe the Colombian rebels were just using him for their most cunning of bomb plots. No, it's in the dinosaur. OK, I admit I missed the pretty obvious plot twist. But this is bad. Arnie really must give up and go into politics full time.