Reviews written by registered user
|12 reviews in total|
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
When I first saw previews for "The Guilt Trip", I actually got pretty
excited for it. I usually enjoy road trip movies when they're done
well, and I thought the concept of an overbearing Jewish Mother
embarrassing her son throughout had the potential to be very humorous
and relatable, especially with Rogen and Streisand in the very
appropriate roles. I found the preview to be very funny too.
Unfortunately, they pretty much used up most of the funny moments in
the preview- it's not actually that spot-on witty for the whole hour
and a half.
The main problem with the movie, despite it's potential, is it's very flat and underwhelming. The dynamic of Rogen being annoyed by his nagging mother Streisand is established in the very beginning, and is just repeated and repeated for an hour and a half with little to no progression for nearly the whole film. The road trip scenes are all under 10 minutes long, with Rogen and Streisand moving from place to place, with no extended interaction with characters or people in these brief settings- and as a result nothing really spectacularly funny, interesting or memorable happens.
Like for example, in a roughly 3-5 minute scene where Rogen's car breaks down and they go to a strip club, despite the potential- there is hardly anything that happens. There is a somewhat humorous awkward discussion of Rogen's Penis in public for a short bit, and then a couple minutes later a stripper fixes their car and they are off. They could have done so much more with that situation! True the movie is definitely not an outrageous gross out comedy, which is fine, I actually respected it for that- but it almost feels TOO low key, like more situations should be arising for what the concept calls for. Even Rogen, despite playing the character of Andy well, lacks his typical ad-lib/pop culture/stoner insight banter that you would see in any Apatow endeavor. I was looking for some more "Rogen rants" towards his mother, but his role was surprisingly restrained and serious.
Sometimes the dynamic does kind of work into funny moments, such as many of Rogen's lines and reactions to Barbara- some of their smaller interactions reminded how I act with my own parents and were relatable. There is also a sweet sincerity to the movie, despite the flatness of the actual plot you do feel some care for the characters. There is a scene where Rogen walks in on Streisand fallen asleep to baby videos, where she tells him how much she loves him and he means to her. It is actually really touching, you almost feel sorry for Streisand. Despite her nagging attitude you can see she is a very caring and loving mother who means well.
With sincere performances and such potential, you really get the feel at the end of the movie they should have pushed it further. It's a movie that definitely has heart, some humor, and potential, but really ends up unsatisfying. It's a bit of a shame. Not a terrible movie to watch with your mother on netflix, but definitely not worth the money or theater trip in my opinion.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The final episode of Seinfeld from 1998 was an extremely disappointing
end to a fantastic show. A lot of people say it's because everyone in
America was expecting such a fantastic finale and nothing can live up
to their expectations. I don't believe that at all... well, even if
that is the case- it is just a genuinely bad episode.
The major problem with the finale, especially the 2nd half hour, is its lack of focus on the main characters.The entire 2nd part of the episode is the past one-timer/minor characters (The Soup Nazi, Babu, Mr. Pitt, Marble Rye lady etc.) testifying against the gang in court and how the gang screwed them over- the four main characters barely speak at all except to make little comments between the testifying! They just sit there the whole time. And why do we need to hear these one-timer characters restate how the gang screwed them over? It made the episode so unengaging. Isn't that why we have clip shows? To some degree reminiscing about the past and including past memorable one-time characters is fine, but at least it would be better if the plot more constructively involved the main cast and just didn't have them sitting there.
The whole plot of the episode is a huge mess in itself; why would these minor characters's stories be relevant in a case that has nothing to do with them? The episode's excuse for this is because according to the prosecution "the trail of antisocial behavior by the gang goes back several years and is therefore relevant to the charge". How the hell is that even possible in any legal system, and how is the judge okay with that?! And how would the prosecution team find all these random people? And what kind of horrible lawyer is Jackie Chiles, he doesn't even call the four up to defend themselves. It's all very contrived.
And worst off at the end we have to see our "anti-heroes" go to jail because of these a-holes who had no relevance to the case whatsoever and couldn't run a court. It's a real downer the last couple of minutes. Not in a typical comical Seinfeld "we're screwed situation" either, it's just plain sad to see we had to leave on this note with these characters we love. Overall a real disappointment, but thankfully it doesn't hinge on the other wonderful memories we had of this show.
"Kenan and Kel" was one of the best shows on Nickelodeon, coming
straight out of the golden age of Nickelodeon back in the 90s.
When I was much younger, I use to always watch it, and even in my late teens now I still find the episodes to be classics. Whenever someone brings up an episode or the show, I find myself looking back on memory lane and laughing at the great episodes this show brought.
The great thing about this show is it is often hysterical and light hearted, with every show getting the two boys entangled up into a "we're screwed" situation, usually through a money-making scheme or the unintentionally inept moves made by one of the two boys (usually Kel), and many of the episodes having plot twists. It really kept you entertained throughout. It may be a show aimed towards a child or teen audience, but many episodes are so well made that they're fine for adults to watch, it's a shame this show was never played in syndication on a different network, or isn't as internationally known as shows such as "I love Lucy" or "Seinfeld", because this may be one of the greater shows of our time.
Sadly, "Kenan and Kel" was canceled in 2000, and Nickelodeon began replacing classic show like this one and "Rocko's Modern Life" with awful garbage like "The Amanda Show", eventually "Drake and Josh", "My life as a teenage robot", and an endless number of other shows that pale greatly in comparison to the programs Nick aired during the 90's. Because of this, "Kenan and Kel" has not been played on the network in many years. Fortunately though, in November of this past year, the show gained a spot on Nickelodeon's satellite network "The N", though such is unhelpful for us that don't have that channel. Thankfully, it may be indicating a possible official DVD release of the show in the next couple of year. We can only hope.
"Walk Hard" is a clever parody of the life of a rock-star, and bio-pics
such as "Walk the line", "Ray" and "La Bamba". It follows the formula
nearly perfectly, and follows fake rock-star legend Dewey Cox (and yes,
they do have plenty of puns with his name, but this is to be expected)
through his life in the 50's, 60's, 70's and into today.
The surprise of "Walk Hard" is that although it was written by the guys who made "Superbad" and "Knocked Up", and has the "formula spoof" similar to "Scary Movie" and "Epic Movie", this film manages to be quite intelligent, and manages to avoid overly gross out humor. While it has its share of gross out and slapstick gags, it isn't completely idiotic, while movies such as "Epic Movie" or "Talladega Nights" tend to be totally moronic and disgusting. The humor here is very observational, self-parodying, ironic, surreal, dark and often hysterical.
The reason why "Walk Hard" works well is because of its somewhat wicked sense of humor. It manages to ironically "overdue" the jokes to the point that you can see the actual funny part is that it is being overdone and over-the-top. It self implies that something is going to go bad, and makes the audience clearly see what path the scene is heading towards, which is also another part of its sense of humor.
The performances are very good as well. John Reilly plays Dewey very well, and his naive but good natured persona often plays out hysterically in contrast to a society often attempting to harm him. His character does lack some substance and emotional depth, though this is to be expected in the humorous nature of the film, and is the writing, not the acting. He plays the role from ages 14 to 71, and the goofy age difference between Reilly and how old of a character he is playing is another one of the film's ironic self-aware quirky jokes, in which he constantly reminds us of his age throughout the film so we can see this, as well as the purposely awkward looking make-up.
Jenna Fischer is great as his love interest and duet partner, a parody of Reese Witherspoon in "Walk the Line", who falls on and off for Dewey throughout the movie based on his life decisions, another movie formula cliché. Tim Meadows is hysterical as Cox' drug-addict drummer and long time friend, with all of his lines being in a tongue-in-cheek and smart-ass manner, and a hysterical repetition of scenes where he introduces Cox to drugs.
All in all, the only problem with this movie is that it is quite uneven. The movie seems to spend a large time dealing with Dewey's life in the 50's, not spending much time in the 60's, 70's or 90's, and spending no time in the 80's. It jumps into his problem a bit fast and doesn't go into depth into some areas of his life as much as others.
However, despite being somewhat uneven, "Walk Hard" remains a very entertaining, very funny, and witty movie. It is quite tragic that this opening weekend went up against the liking of nearly 4 very popular movies, resulting in a box office failure of this film. Hopefully next week, or in the future to come, this gem of a comedy (A rare thing in 2007), can be seen and gain a reputation among others.
The great thing about "Billy Madison" is you're not suppose to take it
nor judge it too seriously. They knew while making it that it wouldn't
be an Oscar winner, nor would it be the next "Citizen Kane", nor is it
suppose to be some intriguing and involved plot, but it in return has
rightfully earned itself a major cult classic status among youth and
film lovers since it's release. It has also become one of the most
quoted and memorable films over the past 12 years.
It's about a 27-year-old man who makes a bet with his dad that if he repeats and passes grades 1-12 (Where is K?), he will take over for his dad's hotel company, instead of his dad's obnoxious and sociopathic friend Erik (played to perfection by Bradley Whitford; despite Billy not having any experience in the field at all...). The film from there follows him in each grade.
Does that sound like much of a plot? No. It is inept, idiotic, unrealistic and bizarre, but it is one of the funniest movies ever made. It has endless amounts of memorable gags that will make you laugh over and over again, it has the type of sense of humor that makes you laugh because it is so damned strange and nonsensical. Most of its gags rely on a hybrid of black humor and slapstick that produces hysterical results.
I feel like I'm 10 years old quoting the movie to all of my friends, but it's the type of movie that will make you do that. If you are in the mood for a very good and thought provoking movie, this isn't your movie, but if you are in the mood to laugh your ass off and not pay attention to how good it actually is... here is your movie.
But that aside, "Billy Madison" isn't just awful like many other goofball comedies of the 90's and 00's, it is very entertaining and memorable... because it just manages to really make you laugh. And it's not dumb characters making stupid mistakes (like Black Sheep for example), just very weird characters making "What the hell was that?!" situations.
The 3rd installment shows our hero (and apparently others as well) in
many different situations. Many which are visually stunning. However, a
number of questions are brought up. The biggest one that came up in my
mind was why is this relevant to the story in the first place? The plot
has Parker dealing with 3 villains this time. Harry Osbourne (of
course), but in addition, there are 2 new villains. This is where the
problem begins to unfold. The first new villain is called "The
Sandman", an escaped convict who gets trapped into a sand experiment,
and develops super natural powers that involve sand (Hmm, we've never
seen scenario this in the first two...). This is the most visually
amusing part of the movie, and Thomas Haden's acting is very good (he
looks so big you could barely tell it's him), ironically this is
probably the least relevant villain. We don't find out what his motives
are. He doesn't want to destroy the world, nor does he want to actually
kill Peter Parker, it doesn't seem he has much relation to the trilogy
is. However, we find out in the beginning that he was the man who
murdered uncle Ben in reality, which is the perfect plot device to
throw him in (though this does impact a fairly good message at the end,
though I won't go into that.
The 2nd villain is called Venom. He is somewhat more relevant to Parker's daily life, but the problem here is turning him into a villain. He is originally portrayed as the goofy, nerdy photographer competing with Parker for a job. A good role that seems fine and well fit for a comedic and likable actor like Topher Grace. He is humorous, and inept of course. It seems awfully awkward to see him become the villain later on in the movie. How does he become one? Well, we find out there is this dark germ of some kind (again, unexplainable), that attacks people and turns them into bad guys. This initially attacks Peter at first, which sets up for an idea "Superman 3" practiced over 20 years ago, in which Peter becomes the bad, aggressive guy. This sets up for another strange sub-plot, including Peter becoming the lady's man, as well as ruining other people's lives, which in turns leads to trouble for him later on.
It doesn't end there! The movie puts in even more sub plots! Mary Jane and Peter's relationship is focused in here, and is tempted by Peter kissing Topher Grace's girlfriend, and Mary Jane as a failed Broadway actress, as well as a love affair between Mary Jane and Harry. Harry also suffers from long term memory loss, which makes him forget Peter killed his father, but only for a while.
Are you lost with all these plots? I don't blame you. While not necessarily confusing, the movie has way too many pointless plots. As previously stated, there doesn't seem to be so much of a major conflict. After a while, you start to realize why the first two are so much better. They stick to one plot, and make it easier to follow and build on. It is hard for them to maintain a good plot and good characterizations with so many things going on, especially when these things are short and irrelevant to the plot. It lacks depth, and innovation.
Now, the positive with the movie. It has it's ups, for sure. It is visually very well made, with great special effects, and good action scenes. They actually do make you root for the characters. This really does save the movie from tanking all the way. It makes a 2/10 movie, into a 5/10 movie. The effects in the scenes, really do make you root for characters, and keeps you on the edge, even if plot isn't so great. It also has a very good sense of humor, equally, or maybe even funnier then the first two.
However, the best part of the 3rd film, is it's ending, and message. Now, I can't say what happens, but it takes an ultimately non-violent resolution and has a good message with forgiveness and doesn't take the typical, cheesy violent action packed way out (I won't tell you what happens though). This also does really help the overall impact of the movie.
At it's best, "Spider Man 3" is visually effective, humorous, and thrilling. At it's worst, it is clichéd, uneven, overlong, overly complex, abstract and formulaic. It ultimately can't top the first 2, and it is somewhat disappointing, though it is a decent movie.
I give it 5/10.
From the way they advertised it, I came into this movie thinking it
would be a light comedy with a pretty original idea: A political
comedian campaigns to become president. Sounds like a clever little
Robin Williams' light hearted comedy. Wrong! In reality, this movie had
nothing to do with a comedian becoming president! Contrary to
advertisements, this movie is a drama-thriller with a little comedy
coated on top, and comes off with awkward results.
Within the first 3 minutes they reveal he has already been elected president. This where I first started to think it was strange, as you would expect that to happen at the end of the movie. For the next 15 minutes, we see a flashback to campaign, and then he is finally elected to office.
However, this is where the real plot comes in. In reality, a woman has discovered that he has not been elected, but that the new computer voting system is flawed. She explains the flaw to the corporation that owns the system, but they refuse to listen to her, because the product would fail and they would lose money. And that's what the whole movie is about! Them trying to track her down, manipulate the public, and possibly kill her! The president is there to try to decide on whether he should confess to the public the truth or not. The movie is filled with dramatic suspense scenes, and ultimately becomes a thriller. It is like a completely different movie then you see in the first few minutes! However, this is where the movie disappoints. It's a great concept to see a comedian getting elected president, but that is hardly what the movie is about. You could basically take the fact that he was a comedian out, and still make this movie as the way it is with a few minor alterations obviously.
It would've been much funnier and more enjoyable to see a light comedy that follows William's campaign, and the whole process of him as a comedian who eventually is trying to become president. That would've made a pretty good movie. Even the humor in this movie barely made me chuckle.
A real disappointment.
This episode is so amazing, it was the first episode of the show I saw, and still remains one of my favorites. It is so dark, and gives you such a relatable feeling of being "lost", it almost borderlines being eerie in it's wicked sense of humor. The atmosphere created in this episode is remarkable, and it always keeps you on the edge wondering what will happen next. I mean, who can't relate to not being able to find your car in a parking garage, and just getting lost out of your mind? It is the ultimate episode about nothing, and to me defines the show's spirit of dark humor and relatable situations. It really is a true Seinfeld classic. You can watch it so many times and still find it enjoyable. It is a treat for all new and old fans!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I anxiously awaited the roast of William Shatner this past summer, as
he is one of my favorite cult-type persona's, and I found the roast of
Pamela Anderson to be quite funny. However, this year's roast proved to
be disappointing in a lot of aspects, defeating my expectations of it
being a superiorly funny roast.
The thing that annoyed me the most was that none of these actors have probably not even met Shatner in their life! These were people like Patton Oswalt, Greg Giraldo, Andy Dick and Lisa Lampenelli. Why are these people here? But now I've realized it's obvious that because they are very common on comedy central, however, it comes off awkward for the viewer and even Shatner to see these comedians who've never even met him come out and mock him. I mean, show us some Mr. Spock please or something! Not only that, but Shatner was hardly part of the show! These people mocked others more then shatner, and while there were a lot of funny insults going here, shatner just sat their laughing seldomly going in to comment. In the Pamela Anderson roast, she seemed more involved.
The jokes here got old and were very hit and miss, with almost all of those comedians basically to sum it up coming up to the stand and saying "hey, look who got bald and fat, look who's a bad actor, but really you were an idol for me as a kid with star trek." Unlike last year's roast, which occasionally insulted Pamela but in a not too harsh and more of a funnier way, the comedian's were overly and deliberately insulting rather then funny when roasting shatner.
Jason Alexander was a bit of a let down too. One funny part of the show was the comedians pointing out how much he tries too hard to be funny and went from going to a show about nothing to literally nothing, which evidently was very true here. He couldn't come up with too many good witty jokes, so would just go into speedy or loud talking to try to be funny. He only had about one or two funny lines. Jimmy Kimmel was a much funnier roast master.
Overall, this program was somewhat weak and forced compared to last year's roast, but there were some funny parts. There were some good insults, but it was hit and miss and spread out among the different comedians. Not one comedian shined specifically, however, out of all of them, 80 something year old Betty White was the funniest and best roaster. God bless her. She didn't need to be overly forced and harsh to be funny like some of the other roast masters, but naturally seemed to be darkly funny. She really knows what a roast is, because she goes back to the older days of good roasts.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
"Dog day afternoon" is one of the most entertaining and well-made
movies ever made. It doesn't use any action or violence, but it
amazingly captures the viewers'attention with good acting, well written
dialog and movie magic that keeps you on your feet wondering what's
going to happen next.
A unique part of this movie is it's atmosphere and settings. It has such a realistic feel of New York in the 70's that you can't help to love it and remember it. Another part contributing to its uniqueness is that it isn't your typical heist movie- it doesn't show the robbers' being masterminds and harsh criminals, it shows them as average people who have never attempted such a thing before.
It is the character of the very desperate and depressed Sonny (Al Pacino)that earns your sympathy. One thing in this movie you can't relate to is authority- you almost can't blame Sonny him for robbing the bank.
The lowest point in the movie is in the end scene when he is busted and looking around at all the police happy that he was put in jail- and his partner dead, one cannot help but feel sympathy for Sonny and resent the unsympathetic authority in the movie, for not realizing he is a desperate man rather then a bad person. It is a highly disappointing scene, that crashes the enjoyment of rooting for Sonny and his partner, and hoping he gets out successfully.
One other low point in the movie is when the character of Moretti is removed. This is the police officer that had all those confrontations in the movie with Sonny, and strangely disappears about 3/4s of the way in, when a more unlikable FBI character comes in which coincides with a lot of the excitement slowing down and you can see the movie goes slightly downhill.
Besides these minor criticisms, "Dog day afternoon" remains a great film that many enjoy to this day, and rightfully has the status of a classic.
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