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The Nativity Story (2006)
A tender telling of the Christmas Story
I really liked this movie! I thought all of the acting was very Very good-- and I loved the fact that all of the actors looked and acted very much like you would expect the people of that region to look and act... this was not a Hollywood whitewash - but a genuine, tenderly done telling of the birth of Christ... a real Christmas gift to the movie-going public.
I also appreciate very much the efforts the filmmakers have gone to tell the story accurately-- aside from the fact the wise men most likely really showed up a year or so after Jesus was born..
Get some real Christmas spirit - go see this movie.
Jersey Girl (2004)
could have been a really sweet feel-good romantic comedy
This movie could have been a really sweet feel-good romantic comedy -- it has all the right ingredients -- a handsome, charming and likable male lead in Ben Affleck, a gorgeous female lead in Liv Tyler, and a totally cute child... the problem was the script-- not the story line -- the script -- the language was peppered with cursing, in particular using the Lord's name as a curse word-- this seems to be fairly common in Kevin Smith movies....interesting.... anyway-- it was totally unnecessary to convey the story and just plain offensive. The other issue I found was in a movie that is supposed to be a romantic comedy, starring a child no less... is it REALLY necessary to have an entire scene devoted to a discussion between the two leads of porn and masturbation? Honestly... do we REALLY need to hear it? How this got a PG13 I don't know... I would have been embarrassed to have taken a 13 year old to see this....Frankly, I would have been embarrassed to see this on a date...
The Phantom of the Opera (2004)
WOW - A great time at the movies!
I thoroughly loved this film-- I had seen the stage play twice -- and loved it. I thought the film version was even better than the stage play since the film of course provides close-ups and smoother transitions from one event to another (all of the things film by definition offers over stage)...I also thought the performances and the voices were every bit as good as those I had seen and heard in the theater. If you enjoyed the stage play - you should LOVE this film... so many of the critics who did not like the film apparently just don't like Andrew Lloyd Webber or his music, or do not like the stage play -- each to his own I guess.
I also think Gerard Butler is just maybe the sexiest man alive! He infused the Phantom with such passion -- at first I was a little surprised to see that the Phantom was young and handsome (well 1/2 handsome anyway)-- but it actually makes the story line a bit more plausible that Christine could be mesmerized and genuinely conflicted about her feelings for him..
A Great time at the movies! I recommend it highly.
Sweet, Predictable & Reasonably Wholesome
This movie is one of those sweet, harmless little pleasantries that is fun to watch when all you want is a bit of brain candy.. (like after a hard day at the office-- and you don't want to have to really think -- you just want something pleasant to soothe and amuse you) I can honestly say I thoroughly enjoyed it.
All the principles gave fine performances - given their roles -- but two that really stand out are Topher Grace and Kathryn Hahn..
I hope that Hollywood will reward these two with more big-screen opportunities to show us what they can do...
There's some real talent there...
Something's Gotta Give (2003)
To my surprise, I liked this movie
I generally dislike Jack Nicholson, although I certainly think he is a very talented and gifted actor... so I watched this movie somewhat reluctantly on the recommendation of a friend. To my surprise, I liked it. I too am a woman "of a certain age" and I found myself responding to this movie very much in the context of a woman Diane Keaton's age. I laughed to tears over her creativity surge-- she very accurately portrayed that kind of grief over a relationship lost... amazing! I must say however, that if I were in a position to choose between Keannu Reeves and Jack Nicholson.. well there's no decision to make--the young stud muffin would win in a heartbeat!...(although Jack really was quite charming once he got over being such a putz).. Anyway.. a fun movie that is well done...
The Matrix Revolutions (2003)
While I totally loved The Matrix, and found Reloaded to be ok, but not nearly as good, I found Revolutions to be just more of the same... which seems so odd.. after all the action sequences ARE amazing, and yet, how much of those same types of effects can a person watch anyway without getting somewhat bored? In Revolutions I found that the editing(writing/directing) kept the viewer away from the "hero" characters for too long-- I think the intensity could probably have been amplified with reasonable cutting back and forth between the battle in the Dock at Zion and whatever was supposedly going on with Neo and Trinity.... over-all, I think the second and third installments just seemed to repeat the same kind of action sequences without introducing any new reason to really care what was happening to these people.... The first movie was intriguing, thought provoking, and fascinating to watch... the other two were more of the same, just not as good.......
Intolerable Cruelty (2003)
Watching this movie IS intolerable cruelty
Starring George Clooney and Catherine Zeta-Jones, with a trailer that suggests a witty, sexy "battle of the sexes" kind of movie romp, I rented this - and good grief... this movie is down-right unwatchable.. I gave up even trying to watch it after about 30 minutes.. I was tempted to shut it off after about 5 minutes, but kept thinking, oh it has to get better once the storyline switches to the two main characters... but no, it didn't. It was boring, badly written, probably badly edited.. at least it was well-named since it's name sums up the viewing experience. This one is a serious candidate for a "razzie" for worst movie of the year.
The Fighting Temptations (2003)
Great Music - Puny Plot
The song and dance and high energy expressions of faith and joy were a delight-- too bad the plot didn't have as much going for it.
Cuba Gooding is a remarkably talented guy, as in fact, were many of the cast members... the script just didn't give them much to work with. The plot is predictable and formulaic-- which isn't necessarily a terrible thing if it never-the-less shows you a really good time anyway. This movie tries to, but just falls flat whenever the music stops.
It was worth watching for the rousing good music, but certainly not something I feel any need to add to my dvd collection and ever watch again.