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8 reviews in total 
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2 out of 15 people found the following review useful:
One of the best television shows ever, 8 March 2004

Okay, I'm gonna be a little lengthy but that's only because this was one long-running but overall great show, one of the great ones on television (whether in reruns or new to the tube). Following (more or less) the events of the 1992 film, Buffy Summers (Sarah Michelle Gellar) moves with her mother Joyce (Kristine Sutherland) to Sunnydale, California, trying to forget all the talk about vampires and her calling as the "Chosen One", the lone female in all the world to stand against vampires, demons, and the forces of darkness (as the opening narration of Seasons 1 and 2 puts it). Soon, Buffy discovers that Sunnydale sits atop of a "Hellmouth" and meets her new "Watcher" Rupert Giles (Anthony Stewart Head) as well as wisecracking Xander (Nicholas Brendon), geeky Willow (Alyson Hannigan), snobbish Cordelia (Charisma Carpenter), and mysterious and brooding vampire Angel (David Boreanaz)who later on becomes Buffy's boyfriend. By the end of the pilot episode, Buffy realizes her destiny and must protect Sunnydale from demonic forces and vampires all while trying to live a normal teenage life.

The first season was slow and had its up and downs (but, hey, the whole show had its ups and downs, too), but the second season was one of the best seasons of the show. The third season was sort of dull but I did enjoy some particular episodes (i.e. "Dead Man's Party", "Band Candy", "Revelations", "Gingerbread", "Helpless", and "The Zeppo"). The show's fourth season still had its faults yet had the interesting though almost science-fiction-y storyline of a half-human, half-demon, and half-robot monster named Adam (George Hertzberg) attempting to create an army of beings like himself.

The fifth season of the show was what kept me glued to the TV and guessing until halfway through with the arrival of Buffy's little sister Dawn (Michelle Trachtenberg) who turns out to be the "Key", a mystical instrument of some sort in which the season's big bad, hell-god Glory (Claire Kramer), intends to use to get back to her home dimension. I found the fifth season of "Buffy" to be one of the best seasons of the show, and I was very blown away by the way the fifth season ended.

Like the third season, the sixth season was sometimes dull, sometimes entertaining, but I did like some episodes (i.e. "Life Serial", "Once More, with Feeling", "Tabula Rasa", "Gone", and some others) despite the show's more mature and dark tone (i.e. Buffy's sexual relationship with Spike and Willow's drug-like addiction to magic). Willow turning into the season's big bad caught me off guard (how and why she does, I will not tell).

Once again, I was completely enthralled by the show's seventh and final season from the seventh season opener to the very end, which was, sadly, the series finale. The season's big bad, apostate preacher Caleb (Nathan Fillion), was a villain, aside from Lionel Luthor from "Smallville", that I truly loathed, especially after what he did to Xander (advice: watch the episode "Dirty Girls" and find out). As with the fifth season finale, I was blown away and even saddened by the series finale, but I'm not spoiling anything for the sake of any "Buffy" fans who might read this review.

In conclusion, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" was one of the greatest shows ever created and put on television, aside from "Smallville" and even "The X-Files". Thank you, Joss Whedon and company, for this extraordinary tale.

I give "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" a 10 out of 10 on a scale of 1-10 in my humble opinion.

45 out of 58 people found the following review useful:
Dark, yet oddly funny, 8 March 2004

I taped this movie on the USA Network at three o'clock in the morning, watched it some time afterward, and I was blown away by this film. Former gangster Carlo Bartolucci aka Charlie Barrett (Christopher Walken in one of his best roles ever) attends a bistro where he finds that a group of swaggering young men, consisting of Max (Sean Patrick Flanery), Avery (Henry Thomas), Brett (Jay Mohr), T.K. (Jeremy Sisto), and Ira (Johnny Galecki), have taken over his usual booth. Charmed by the guys, Charlie takes them for a ride, only for them to knock him out with some chloroform while going down the Queens tunnel in a hilarious sequence. Charlie regains consciousness inside of Ira's mansion taped to a chair with one of his fingers missing, having been cut off to compensate for Avery's kidnapped sister's missing limb. The guys keep Charlie prisoner in the mansion, but soon, Charlie starts to play head games with them, and it soon becomes obvious that there is a traitor in their midst.

This darkly humorous crime thriller can be described in the most simple terms as "The Breakfast Club" meets "The Godfather" or something like that, even though I myself never saw "The Godfather." Walken is increasingly laughter-provoking, suave, and creepy all at the same time as he delivers witticism after witticism despite his usual situation. Four of the lead males (Henry Thomas, Jay Mohr, Sean Patrick Flanery, and Jeremy Sisto) all portray swaggering rich boys, while Johnny Galecki (David from TV's "Roseanne") is screamingly funny as the nitpicking nerd of the bunch and Denis Leary is his usual laid-back self as slick and wisecracking gangster Lono (what a funny name!).

I said it once and I'll say it again -- "Suicide Kings" is a darkly comical film, but it is highly recommended (for those with kids) that you watch this either late at night or while the kids are away.

I give "Suicide Kings" a 10 out of 10 on a scale of 1-10 in my humble opinion.

Spider-Man (2002)
One of the greatest superhero films ever made, 8 March 2004

Although I am not terribly fond of spiders (or arachnids, for that matter), I am a big fan of the "Ultimate Spider-Man" comic books from Marvel as well as some of the issues from even before "Ultimate Spider-Man" came out. I heard a lot about the big-screen version of Spidey, and finally, when the movie came out on video some time ago, my mother bought it for me and I watched it immediately, and I was surprised at how well this film turned out.

Peter Parker (Tobey Maguire) is a high-school nerd who lives with his aunt and uncle (Cliff Robertson and Rosemary Harris) in New York, is best friends with rich boy Harry Osborn (James Franco), and is head-over-heels in love with the beautiful Mary Jane Watson (Kirsten Dunst), who happens to be his next-door neighbor. One day during a field trip to Columbia University where scientists have created fifteen genetically-enhanced spiders, one of the spiders escapes and bites Peter on the hand. Soon, Peter gains the proportionate strength, speed, and agility of a spider, and decides to use his powers to win some money at a wrestling match. When his uncle is murdered by a thug he failed to stop earlier, Peter learns the hard way the true meaning of his uncle's earlier advice to him ("with great power comes great responsibility"), and utilizes his powers to protect the people of New York as Spider-Man. At the same time, Harry's industrialist father Norman (Willem Dafoe) experiments with a human performance enhancer on himself and becomes the homicidal Green Goblin, who then challenges Spidey's vow to fight crime and the good of all.

I really enjoyed this film, and there has been nothing like it since maybe either "Superman" or "Batman". Tobey Maguire does an excellent job as Spider-Man and his alter-ego Peter Parker, who, to me, is Clark Kent blended with Jimmy Olsen. Willem Dafoe steals the show as the psychotic, glider-flying Green Goblin with an air of psychotic wittiness that is matched only by Christopher Walken (it should be interesting to note that Dafoe starred with Walken in the film "New Rose Hotel"; maybe Dafoe picked up a few pointers from Walken. Hmmm...). Kirsten Dunst is fine as Peter's true love who fights for herself in one scene, then becomes the standard "damsel-in-distress" (no offense meant to her, though). The rest of the cast does fine in their roles, but it is the excellent musical score (courtesy of Danny Elfman) and the story itself that make this film worth a look (or as many looks as you want). "Spider-Man" is a great film, and one of the best films ever made.

In my humble opinion, I give "Spider-Man" a 10 out of 10 on a scale of 1-10.

The Prophecy II (1998) (V)
4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
Seriously lacking in the original story, but still entertaining, 5 March 2004

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

In this sequel to "The Prophecy", Christopher Walken returns as the renegade Archangel Gabriel, who, after years of torment in Hell, is returned to the earthly plane by Lucifer, who had decided that Hell isn't big enough for the two of them. Again Gabriel seeks to end mankind's reign on Earth, but instead of searching for the perfect evil soul to achieve his ends, Gabriel is now in search of the one thing that can defeat him: a Nephilim, a being born of a human woman and an angel. Los Angeles nurse Valerie Rosales (Jennifer Beales) is the mother of this being, having been impregnated by the angel Danyael (Russell Wong), who now seeks to protect Valerie from Gabriel. As in the first film, Gabriel is (quite hilariously) inept when it comes to modern technology, so he "enlists" the services of Izzy (Britney Murphy), a depressed teenager whom he resurrects after she commits suicide.

"The Prophecy II" was seriously lacking in the story ideas established in the first film. Thomas Daggett, the hero from that film, appears briefly, only to meet a horrible end at the hands of Gabriel. (Sorry for the spoiler, but I personally feel this is a minor plot point.) Yet, the film was still entertaining, even though it might take a while for viewers to piece things together. Christopher Walken is simultaneously quirky and creepy as always, while Jennifer Beals, Russell Wong, Britney Murphy, and Eric Roberts (as the angel Michael) deliver decent performances. While the story lines from the first movie were dismissed in this film, this sequel sort of makes up for that by continuing the Nephilim concept established here in the third installment, "The Prophecy III: The Ascent." All in all, I give "The Prophecy II" a 5 out of 10 on a scale of 1 to 10 in my humble opinion.

50 out of 66 people found the following review useful:
A very impressive and inventive film about angels, 15 February 2004

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I first saw this film on TNT some months ago (and, of course, it was edited for content) and my aunt got me this movie for Christmas. And as with the television version, I was entertained.

"The Prophecy" is about the Archangel Gabriel (Christopher Walken) who, believing that his Heavenly Master favors humans more than angels, decides to start a war in Heaven. He goes in search of an evil soul to carry out his dirty work, and Gabriel sets his sights on the spirit of Colonel Hawthorne, a Korean War vet. Gabriel, accompanied by his human lackey Jerry (Adam Goldberg), heads out to the Arizona desert where he digs up Hawthorne's remains, only to find that his soul has been stolen by Simon (Eric Stolz), another angel determined to stop the coming war. Gabriel soon discovers that Simon has hidden Hawthorne's soul inside a little girl named Mary (Moriah Snyder). Soon, it's up to police detective Thomas Daggett (Elias Koteas) and schoolteacher Catherine (Virginia Madsen) to stop Gabriel from obtaining Hawthorne's soul, and things get a bit complicated when Lucifer (Viggo Mortensen) gets into the mix.

I really enjoyed this film, mainly because of Walken and his enjoyably off-kilter portrayal as a dark, evil version of the Archangel Gabriel, who, in the Holy Bible, was one of the good guys. (I wonder what the real Gabriel thinks!) In many ways, his performance is brilliant, yet at times, dare I say, laughter-provoking even though it doesn't mean to. All of the other performances by Elias Koteas, Virginia Madsen, Adam Goldberg, and Eric Stolz are just plain fine (but not at all bad), but Viggo Mortensen gives one of the most accurate on-screen portrayals of the Prince of Darkness aside from Al Pacino in "The Devil's Advocate." All in all, "The Prophecy" is an entertaining and sometimes humorous apocalyptic thriller with an inventive (though what some very conservative Christians would probably call "unholy") concept about angels and God.

I give this film a 10 out of 10 on a scale of 1-10 in my humble opinion.

276 out of 339 people found the following review useful:
An intriguing and realistic portrayal of Clark Kent's teenage years, 15 February 2004

When I first heard that the WB was doing a show about Clark Kent in the days before he became Superman, I honestly thought it was going to be an animated series, but when the first episode was first broadcast on October 16, 2001, I was instantly surprised.

The show starts in 1989, where a meteor shower bombards the small Kansas town of Smallville, leaving lots of people with scars and secrets of varying degrees; as such, it has certain emotional impacts on four characters: it leaves young Lex Luthor bald (I would say it traumatized him, but that's more or less mentioned already), it leaves three year-old Lana Lang orphaned, and it brings childless couple Jonathan and Martha Kent (John Schneider and Annette O'Toole) the child they always wanted. Fast-forward 12 years, and Clark Kent (Tom Welling) is just starting to experience the usual troubles of teenage life, something that will be especially difficult since Clark has superhuman strength and abilities that no ordinary teenager could only dream of having. Clark soon learns that he arrived the same time as the destructive meteor shower that besieged Smallville inside a spaceship as a toddler. Now Clark is left with questions about his birth parents and home planet, and manages to start a friendship with Lex Luthor (Michael Rosenbaum), who--unknown to Clark--will ultimately become Clark's arch-nemesis.

I can easy say that "Smallville" is an immensely intriguing and highly realistic sci-fi/teen drama. To make things all the more interesting, "Smallville" blends the teen angst-meets-supernatural circumstances theme of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" with the "monster-of-the-week" trend of "The X-Files." Apart from dealing with personal and emotional crises, Clark has to use his powers to battle an endless slew of Kryptonite-mutated villains, much like Buffy and the Scooby Gang battle demons that are sometimes drawn in by the mystical energy radiated by the Hellmouth.

Tom Welling is superb as teenage Clark Kent, both in physical and personality-wise ways. He looks almost like Chris Reeve, so much he could easily be Reeve's son. The rest of the cast is fine: Kristin Kreuk as Clark's love interest Lana Lang, Allison Mack as Clark's Lois Lane-type pal Chloe Sullivan, Sam Jones III as the Xander-like Pete Ross, and John Schneider and Annette O'Toole as Clark's adoptive parents, but it is Michael Rosenbaum and John Glover who steal the show as Lex Luthor and Lex's father, Lionel. You can easily tell just by observing Lex and Lionel's rocky relationship that Lionel is the one who will ultimately make Lex evil.

All of the episodes have their ups and downs, but I like to name two episodes that will keep you glued to the screen: the episode guest-starring the late Christopher Reeve as a scientist who reveals the truth about Clark's home planet, Krypton, and the second season finale where the "spirit" of Clark's Kryptonian father Jor-El urges Clark to get ready to conquer the world, but I don't want to spoil anything, so you'll have to watch the episode to find out what happens next, and why.

In conclusion, I give "Smallville" a 10 out of 10 on a scale of 1-10.

2 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
One word: Hilarious, 9 February 2004

I caught and taped this movie on Comedy Central, and was instantly entertained at how darned funny this film is. It's OUTRAGEOUSLY funny! I haven't seen anything this funny since that old FOX show "Titus".

Simply put, the plot is as follows: Eugene Morris Jerome (Matthew Broderick) is an aspiring young writer from Brooklyn who is drafted into the army and shipped off to basic training in Biloxi, Mississippi, near the end of World War II. Eugene soon finds himself face-to-face with a kooky drill sergeant by the name of Merwin J. Toomey (Christopher Walken in one of his best performances to date), and things take off from there. I don't want to spoil anything; after you see this film for yourself, trust me, you'll be instantly surprised! Like I said before, this movie was painfully funny in many places, and the acting was good, the highlights being Matthew Broderick as the docile everyman Eugene and Chris Walken as the highly eccentric drill sergeant. Walken's performance was laugh-out funny and superb. True, the film gets slow in some places, but all in all, it's a good, clean comedy for anyone who loves a coming-of-age story set during a war with some humor thrown in.

I give this a 10 out of 10 on a scale of 1-10.

Hulk (2003)
0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Good but not great, 9 February 2004

Okay, where do I begin? When I first saw previews for this film, I didn't really know what to think. Not really being able to go into a movie theater, I decided to buy the soundtrack first. Loved the soundtrack, but craved more. Finally, when "The Hulk" came on video sometime in October, my mother bought it for me and I watched it immediately.

Again, I didn't know what to expect. For starters, the movie begins with maverick scientist David Banner (played as a young adult by Paul Kersey and in his later years by Nick Nolte) experimenting with the human body's ability to heal itself from disease and injury. Forbidden to experiment on humans by his (somewhat?) nemesis General Ross (played as a young adult by Todd Tesen and later by Sam Elliott), David decides to experiment on himself and later, his wife bears a son, Bruce. Years later, Bruce Banner (Eric Bana) is a scientist like dear old dad also experimenting with using gamma radiation to repair damaged cells. Having grown up in a foster home after his parents supposedly died and plagued by a considerable amount of emotional turmoil and an inability to open up emotionally, Bruce's relationship with co-worker Betty Ross (Jennifer Connelly) has suffered to the point where they have broken up but still work together. Bruce's experimentations catch the eye of high-and-mighty Glenn Talbot (Josh Lucas) who plans to take the project and tries to con both Bruce and Betty into working for him, but they both refuse. Then, one day, something goes wrong with a gamma ray-emitting device and Bruce rushes to aid of a co-worker, throwing himself in the path of lethal gamma rays. While he survives what would normally kill a human being, Bruce's life is forever changed as now, whenever under extreme stress or rage, he transforms into a 15-foot mass of green monster that later becomes known as the Hulk. General Ross, who turns out to be Betty's father, takes notice and seeks to capture (and then destroy) the Hulk while David Banner comes around and begins stalking this troubled but docile son. Soon, all hell breaks loose as various characters (Talbot, General Ross, and even Betty included) make one poor decision after another, but I won't spoil you with the exact details.

The plot was fine as it gave a more reasonable explanation for how Bruce survives what would usually kill a human. The only thing great about this movie was the music, courtesy of Danny Elfman. The acting was fine, but nothing that could warrant an Academy Award nomination (no offense). Eric Bana, Jennifer Connelly, Sam Elliott, Josh Lucas, and Nick Nolte all handled their parts well. On Bana's part, this is something Christopher Reeve could've pulled off if only this film were made in the late 1970's and if Reeve hadn't done "Superman" (no offense). On Nolte's part, his performance was something Christopher Walken could do in his sleep. Overall, this movie was good but not great like last year's "Spider-Man". In my humble opinion, the musical soundtrack and the novelization by Peter David is a bit better than the film.

I give this film about a 4 of 10 on a scale of 1-10.