Reviews written by registered user
|107 reviews in total|
This is a light-hearted fairytale that I think children will enjoy (adults, not so much). I do have to give big props to Tarsem Singh who once again has created a visual explosion on the big screen. Also, the fact that the writers provided a new line of work for the seven dwarfs did enhance the story. I am almost sure that no one wants to see seven little people going to the mines every day. Had it not been for the dwarfs, this film would have lost most of its appeal. I really would have liked to have seen a little more character development of the seven dwarfs because they were all very endearing. After all, the original story was called Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, not Snow White and the Witch. But that being said, Julia Roberts (the Queen) did make a convincing (and funny) evil person along with her sidekick, Nathan Lane (Brighton). I bet you that Julia has not had this much fun making a film in a very long time. I can see why she took the part. As far as Nathan goes, he is always fun to watch and this film was definitely not a stretch for him at all. The few hilarious moments in this film were silly and fun, but some young people might not get all the jokes. It is like the design of the film was made for children, but the dialog was written for grown folks and I don't think that the film ever reached a happy medium. The silliness of the fact that Arnie Hammer (Prince Alcott) turns into a puppy (depicted in the trailer) was bordering on nauseating. It just dragged on too long. Lily Collins (Snow White) fit into the role perfectly. She even looks a little like the cartoon (this is a complement). I do have to say that I was pleasantly surprised (mildly) at the ending and I really enjoyed the dancing when the credits were rolling. I think that children between the ages of seven and twelve might enjoy this film. Anyone older or younger would probably not enjoy it as much. I didn't hate the film and I didn't nod off, so I say if you are just looking to get out of the house and you've seen all the other films that are showing, go and see it. I am giving this film an amber light.
When I first saw the trailer for this film, I thought to myself .. oh my, what's this .. an original thought. A film that is not about a comic book, love gone wrong, love gone right or casual sex. If nothing else, this film was a break from the cookie cutter films that have been coming out lately. The title says cowboys and aliens and that is exactly what you got. There is no deep thought required. This film was just mindless fun that you can just sit back and enjoy. Will it go down in history as being a western classic? Heck No, but in several years to come you might find yourself turning to a friend or a relative saying something like, remember when they made that movie about cowboys and aliens???? I do have to admit that I was very excited about seeing James Bond and Indiana Jones in the same film. Daniel Craig (Jake Lonergan) and Harrison Ford (Colonel Dolarhyde) made a pretty good team and one was just as tough as the other. For a long time during the initial introduction of the aliens I found myself thinking that they are going to have to call on the x-men or at least Sigorney Weaver to handle this situation. There were a couple of mild surprises during the film, but for the most part it was pretty predictable. To be honest with you, I really did not care. I just wanted to see some cowboy fighting aliens. I would be remiss if I did not mention Adam Beach (Nat Colorado) and Keith Carradine (Sheriff John Taggart). I haven't seen either of them on the big screen for quite some time, so I was happy to see their reappearance. The one thing that this film did do well was that it explained all the aspects of the film. For instance, how did that bracelet get on his arm . Why are aliens here . What do they want and why did he lose his memory. I hate it when I leave a film and there are questions unanswered. Did folks get up and cheer when this film was over no. Did I think that this is a film that I might want to see again no. Did the film feel like it was two hours long no. Was it enjoyable and did it get me out of the house for a couple of hours .. yes. So, for the reasons mentioned above I am going to saddle up my horse and give this film an amber light.
Sir Peter Jackson is really trying to keep the franchise going with this prequel to the Lord of the Rings films. I saw an interview with the cast on some morning show and it is just hard to believe that all the dwarfs are over six feet tall. I think that the CGI in films continue to improve and I can't imagine what they will have in store for us in the coming years. The story begins with Bilbo Baggins (Ian Holm,old Bilbo) wanting to document his unexpected adventure so that he will be able to share it with his young friend once completed. Bilbo (Martin Freeman) sets off on his journey to help the dwarfs, led by Thorin (Richard Armitage) regain their homeland. Along the way they run into various mini-adventures and have to fight their way through the landscape. Anyway, there were a lot of familiar faces in this film; even Elijah Wood (Frodo) made a brief appearance at the beginning of the film. Galadriel (Cate Blanchett), Elrond (Hugo Weaving), Saruman (Christopher Lee) and Gollum (Andy Serkis) are among the cast of characters returning to the film. Speaking of Gollum, I think that there were some scenes in this film that were entirely too long (e.g. the riddle scene by the underground lake). My favorite character in this film (and all the films is Gandalf (Ian McKellen). He always seems to show up just when you need him and when he does, you know there is about to be some awesomeness on the screen. I think that the thing that surprised me the most was all the singing in the film; I didn't see that coming. I did enjoy the "rock" fight .. trust me; it is not what you think. It is evident at the end of the film that there will be a sequel to this prequel; so get ready for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. Smaug (by the way) is the name of the fire-breathing dragon in the film. I only hope that this one will not be another butt blister film. I could hear the kids saying that they thought this film was awesome after it was over. I thought that it was pretty entertaining and the film itself was beautifully made. I just wish that it was not almost three hours long. I almost gave it an amber light just for that reason, but I am going to go ahead and give it a green light. "Lord" lovers will definitely like it.
I have to say that it has been a while since I've seen a Bond film and this is the first one that I have seen with Daniel Craig in the lead role. I don't remember a 007 film being this long, but I have to say that the adventures of Bond are sure to continue. I just hope that they won't start doing them in pairs, like what they did with the Twilight film (part 1 and part 2). From the trailer, you could tell that James Bond comes back from his supposed demise and has to regenerate himself to protect his fearless leader. The one thing that the film does not explain is exactly how he survived the fall off that bridge. They may have shown it after they ran the credits at the end. I have found that more and more films are doing that, which I hate. Especially since this film was so dog gone long. I think that Daniel Craig did a decent job portraying 007, but I was not used to seeing the super spy so down-trodden. Hopefully he will be more charismatic in the next one (if he is still cast). Dame Judi Dench was a formidable "M" and was hardened and definitely goal oriented to the task at hand. Javier Bardem was very convincing as the crazy and totally "out there" villain Silva. He was as nutty and demented as Heath Ledger's Joker. He did a brilliant job making you hate him but at the same time, you wanted to know what the heck he was going to do next. The one thing that I did miss in this film was the abundance of gadgets that are usually introduced, but the film definitely worked without them. It turns out that Ben Whishaw's "Q" was almost too smart for his own britches, but I like the fact that he was a young character. I hope that they bring back Naomie Harris who played Eve in the next film. I think that she and Daniel had great chemistry on screen. This film did hold true to everything that is the amazing "Bond". Although this is yet another butt blister film, it is worth paying the price of a ticket to see it on the big screen. I have to say that the only thing that was missing while viewing this film was a dry martini (shaken, not stirred). I give this film a glaring green light.
I know that you are going to find this hard to believe but I was a rock and roll fan long before I was a rhythm and blues fan. The first album that I ever bought was a Pink Floyd album. I found myself singing along with most of the songs, but this was one weird movie. Although the story line was really nothing new, I was surprised that so many actors that normally don't sing on screen had pretty decent voices. I have to say that Tom Cruise (Stacee Jaxx) looks damn good to have just turned fifty. As with all his roles he really threw himself into this character and was totally convincing as a superstar, doped up rocker of the eighties. I have to say that the headband kind of reminded me of Bret Michaels (not sure if that was intentional or not). It was discovered during the preparation of this film that Tom has a four octave range. Who knew? Is there anything this guy can't do? The relationship between Alec Baldwin (Dennis Dupree) and Russell Brand (Lonny) was unexpected (you'll see what I mean once you see the movie). I have to say that Julianne Hough (Sherrie Christian) was adorable in this film, but I think that her acting skills can use a little honing if she ever intends to do a film that doesn't involve singing or dancing. Catherine Zeta-Jones (Patricia Whitmore) was as good in this film as she was in Chicago. Playing the rock and roll hating wife of Bryan Cranston (Mike Whitmore) suited her to a tee. I have to say that she has not lost her chops. You might know director Adam Shankman from So You Think You Can Dance as a guest choreographer. I have seen movies that become Broadway plays, but I am not sure if it works so well the other way around. I can understand why this film was such a huge hit on Broadway because if nothing else, it is entertaining. However there are a couple of scenes that had me shaking my head and thinking, "I can't believe that they just did that". I say that if you are a true head-banger, and you want to see conventional actors rocking out, then go out and see this film. If not, wait until it comes out on DVD. I am giving this film an amber light.
I think that director and writer Christopher McQuarrie did a pretty good job on this film, although it is nowhere near the excellent writing that he produced for The Usual Suspects (one of my favorite films). I think that the difference was that in this film there was no element of surprise. I figured out the whole film before it was revealed on screen. And if I figured it out, I know that Emma did since she is more analytical then I am. I have to say that although I was ahead of the film a bit, I still enjoyed seeing it play out. Jack Reacher (Tom Cruise) is an ex-military drifter who apparently shows up whenever there is injustice with regards to another ex-military sniper. Jack teams up with Helen (Rosamund Pike) to confirm that what happened is the truth and ends up getting more than he bargained for. When I first saw Rosamund on screen, I thought it was Jenna Elfman. They look incredibly alike and I am sure that I am not the only person who thought that. Anyway, Jack seems to get some level of support from unexpected characters. One of those characters is Cash (Robert Duvall) who adds a little comic relief to the film. Emerson (David Oyelowo) heads up the police force, while Rodin (Richard Jenkins) is the District Attorney and Helen's father. There is a sub-story about the volatile relationship between Helen and Rodin. Every time I see Richard on screen I can't help but think about the HBO series Six Feet Under where he played a dead guy. This film had some disturbing violence in the wake of what happened earlier this month. There was a time that the powers that be stopped promoting this film (and for good reason). After you get passed the initial scene, the film tells a pretty good story. The action sequences were really well orchestrated and did add a bit of excitement to the film. I do want to say that Tom plays a lot of these types of characters and I think that I like it better when he steps out of the box a bit, like he did when he was in Rock of Ages. There are a lot of really good films coming out during the holiday season and I am not sure if this is a "must see", so with that being said, I am giving this film an amber light.
Never in a million years did I ever think that I would be watching a film about people watching birds. The activity of birding (formally known as bird watching) was entirely a new concept to me. I had never heard of such a thing as "The Big Year" contest and the fact that it is based on the honor systems really blows the mind (and the conscience). Before I delve into the actual film contents I just want to say that I recognize Jack Black (Brad Harris), Steve Martin (Stu Preissler) and Owen Wilson (Kenny Bostick) as exceptional actors. They all added their own style and comedic relevance to the film. If you consider yourself an avid "birder", then I think that you would have a deeper appreciation for this film than those of us who are not all that interested. The only bird that I have found to be fascinating is the hummingbird (which is the only bird that has the ability to fly backwards). I also have a tattoo of one on my right thigh which shows that I truly love this bird, other than that, not really interested in birds that much. Some of the scenery depicted in this film was truly breath-taking and it did take you to places that you would not ordinarily think of when looking for birds. There were plenty of supporting actors in the film including Anjelica Huston (Annie Auklet) and Brian Dennehy (Martin Harris). I do not think that this was Director David Frankel's best work. I enjoyed "The Devil Wears Prada" much more. It would have been a kick if some time during the film, a flock of animated Angry Birds went screeching across the screen. Now that would have been hilarious. Sometimes I think that I have a really weird sense of humor, but oh well. Although I found this film to be rather mild-mannered, the actors gave credence to the film and made it kind of interesting to watch. If you are bored and want to have a relaxing couple of hours out of the house, then I recommend that you take flight and go and see this film. However, if you are not interested in birds all that much, but want to see the top-notch actors interact, then wait until it comes out on DVD. This film gave me a rather Luke-warm feeling when it was over and for that reason I am giving this film an amber light.
I am going to start out by saying that there was so much wrong with this film that I don't even know where to start. Emma saw this film before I did and I have not seen her review, but I know she had to be thinking after she saw it that "Catt is going to hate this film". You know what, she would be right. When the film first started there was this really creepy music playing that had me thinking whether or not I walked into the wrong theater. The music got weirder as the film went on. I also want to know what the deal was with all the financial broadcasting about the economy in the background of almost every scene they shot. Maybe it was some kind of subliminal messaging, but I sure didn't get it. It was more annoying than anything else. They even found un-clever ways of incorporating the president into some of the scenes. Were they trying to say that it is the president's fault that people have to resort to crime in this economy? Who knows? The only thing that I found remotely interesting was a scene that was shot in slow motion so that you could get the full effect of a violent act. The film mainly centers around the activities of Frankie (Scoot McNairy) and Russell (Ben Mendelsohn), who are two junkies looking for a way to score some quick cash. When things go bad, Jackie (Brad Pitt) is brought in to rectify the situation. I am not sure why Brad got top billing in this film. He really didn't do a whole lot in the action department, but when he did; it was brutal. However he did manage to do a lot of talking. I guess they just needed a big name to draw people into the theater, because the story was definitely not going to do the trick. I am not really sure why Mickey (James Gandolfini) was even in the film. They could have left his character out completely and it would not have changed the outcome of the film one bit. Markie Trattman (Ray Liotta) is the catalyst that gets the ball rolling in this film. I found his character to be one of the stupidest. I was truly bored in this film. When the film was about three quarters of the way done, I could have sworn that I heard someone snoring in the theater. This film was killing me softly in the theater. I give it a red light.
I expected to see a film about sleeping beauty and I assume that most people expect the same. I was pleasantly surprised to be surprised. The film is not what I expected. I also did not see this film in 3D, which I regretted by the end of the film. I could see moments (a lot of moments) that would have been beneficial if they would have been in 3D. Angelina Jolie (Maleficent) did a brilliant job playing the betrayed fairy. I do have to say that her cheek bones were pointy to the extreme. Elle Fanning (Aurora) is really making a name for herself. I am sure that by now she is tired of playing a younger Dakota. The three baby-sitters in this film Lesley Manville (Flittle), Imelda Staunton (Knotgrass) and Juno Temple (Thistletwit) have to be the worse babysitters on the planet. They were very cute as fairies, but when they became normal, they were just idiots. Watching them as adults was pretty painful and reminded me of the Three Stooges (which I do not like). Sam Riley (Diaval) was my favorite character in this film. I think that he provided a sense of humanity and sensibility as Maleficent's sidekick. The one thing that I did notice while watching the film is that a lot of adults kept getting up and walking out (to go to the restroom, buy more food, whatever). It was as if they were bored because they already knew what was going to happen. I have to say that I felt that way too for a while. I even stepped out to return a call to my mom. Turns out that there is a twist to the story and when that happened, everyone was glued to their seat. I think that the star of this film was the imagery. The creatures and background in this film was really what captured the attention of the audience (myself included). This is a film that I may have to go back and see it in 3D. By the way . at the end of the film all the little kids in the theater applauded, which is always a good sign for a Disney film.
I wonder what the Brothers Grimm would think about this adaptation of their fairytale. I find it fascinating that a story written so long ago about a woman's obsession with staying young still holds true today. I am sure that the manufacturers of wrinkle cream are also thrilled. I hope that no one expects any major surprises in this film. Heck, we all know the story (unless you were raised by wolves in a cave somewhere). One of the things that I did like about this film is the cinematography, although it seemed like an awfully long time to get away from the gloominess of the beginning of the film. I also think that they did a heck of a job with the CGI. The fact that Ian McShane (Beith) could be turned into a dwarf blew me away. I also fell in love with the little fairies in the film. They were so adorable and life-like. I wonder is Charlize Theron (Ravenna) ever lost her voice during the filming of this story. There sure was a heck of a lot of screaming going on. I think that she likes playing "bad" people roles because she sure was convincing in this role, much like when she played Aileen in Monster. Kristen Stewart (Snow White) , the fairest of them all . I don't think so, but she definitely demonstrated that she could act in something other than a vampire movie. What can I say about Chris Hemsworth (the huntsman) that hasn't already been demonstrated in films like Thor and The Avengers. He sure has come a long way since we first saw him as George Kirk in Star Trek. That is one beautiful human being and I am glad to hear that there will be another Thor film. I do have to say that I liked this film better than Mirror Mirror, which put a comedic twist on the story. There seems to be a lot of that going around (e.g. Dark Shadows). This is Rupert Sanders first big screen venture and it wasn't half bad. Am I rushing out the door to tell folks that this is a must-see film . No, but if you are interested in seeing yet another twist of an old world fable, then by old means check it out. I am not sure that I would bite the apple for this one. I am giving this film an amber light.
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