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Saratoga Trunk (1945)
Mediocre film, waste of great actors!!
This film is in serious need of editing - the first two-thirds or so is BORING and meanders aimlessly. I've never seen Ingrid Bergman chew up the scenery like this, she seemed to be channeling her inner Scarlett O'Hara (and not in a good way). Flora Robson looks ridiculous in black face, surely they could find a black actress??? The only character I liked a lot was the little man Cupidon, he was charming and great comic relief. Florence Bates livens up the proceedings immeasurably near the end, she's always a great character actress. But so much of this movie seems to be a very poor imitation of GWTW. But Ingrid does look lovely. Gary Cooper looks too old for his part. Just my two cents.
Monster Trucks (2016)
Lucas Till saves this movie
First the good - my 7 1/2 year-old grandson said he LOVED this movie. So from his point of view, it's a 10.
My 9 1/2 year-old granddaughter liked it.
As an adult viewer, I found Lucas Till's acting to be the only saving grace. IMO he (like Steve McQueen in "The Blob") has a great charisma on screen and helped me suspend disbelief of the truly ridiculous and formulaic plot.
The photography was truly terrible, very non-hi-def like TV from 1960! I regret wasting money on 3D, nothing in 3D really jumped out at you at all!! The "monster" reminded me in a way of "Toothless" from "How To Train Your Dragon".
But again, this movie is mainly targeted for little boys, and it's a hit with them.
Kids liked it OK, I thought it was forgettable
Animation is good (except surely not all Polynesians are so stocky and have such large cankles???). I liked the Moana character and her outfit was cute. Maui not so much, such an overblown caricature it was ridiculous!!! My 9 year old granddaughter thought his moving tattoos were silly. She and her 7 year old brother enjoyed it OK, but I doubt if they would want to see it again. I know I don't!! The plot was formulaic and none of the characters (except Moana) were memorable. I don't recall any memorable songs, either. The movie needed a MUCH better plot and more in-depth characters. Go back to the drawing board, Disney!! Some of my granddaughter's old Barbie movies (like "Pegasus") had better and more memorable stories!!
Finding Dory (2016)
Not anywhere nearly as good as Finding Nemo!
I was super disappointed in this film, given that it was rated 4.5 stars. It had way too much of Dory. I wish I had a nickel for every time she mentioned she has memory problems; I'd be stinking rich. Trust me, the bad memory shtick gets very old after a short time.
If you love Dory, yes you will like the movie. But if Dory all the time is a bit much for you, you will get bored by this fast. The new whale characters just were not very interesting either. The 2 grand-kids liked Finding Dory OK, but I doubt if they would want to see it again. This is not the first time I've been disappointed in a highly-rated kids film, 5 stars just doesn't mean the quality it did in the past.
Rod Serling could condense this to 30 minutes!!
What a ridiculously overrated waste of film!!! This film - at over 2 hours - is still W-A-Y too long! I can't imagine 9 hours!!!!! This is like a Rod Serling Twilight Zone episode, but he could have filmed it in 30 minutes easily and made it infinitely better. Such sappiness at the beginning, as Marcus gives up his girlfriend to Mac. Are you kidding me??? Who does that? Not a rat like Marcus, that's for sure!! And I couldn't believe Mac let Trina hoard the money for SO long. A normal husband would have forced her to spend the money instead of leaving, and then later killing her. He could have smashed that trunk open easily!!! And no normal man would not try to get some kind of job, especially back then when men were expected to support their families. Very little in this movie was believable. I didn't like any of the characters, so I didn't really care what happened to them at all!! In fact, this movie should be re-titled "Stupidity".
Barbie: Fairytopia (2005)
Liked the Barbie Pegasus movie - this one not so much
After viewing the Barbie Pegasus movie, I bought this Fairytopia DVD due to its rave reviews on Amazon.com. They are VERY similar in many respects - Barbie has an adorable animal sidekick, goes on a quest of sorts encountering & overcoming various perils, an evil villain with henchmen, otherworldly beings, etc. So similar that I'm sorry I bought Fairytopia.
When the female villain got destroyed in Fairytopia my 3 yr. old granddaughter was upset and asked me if she died. I didn't really know what to say as she exploded into multicolored bits(??) We enjoyed the Pegasus movie MUCH more. The villain got a satisfying comeuppance, but did not die in the Pegasus movie. A better ending for my granddaughter than violent deaths such as the witches in Sleeping Beauty and The Little Mermaid.
I was totally disappointed in the animation in Fairytopia, the scenery could have been much more complex & beautiful. The animation in Pegasus was far more lovely, IMO. The Barbie character had more expression & looked less like a plastic doll.
My grandkids did get a lot of giggles over Bibble, though.
Great Scenes of Medieval Splendor
The scenery & costumes (especially of the jousting) are the main stars of this movie. I was prepared to dislike Elizabeth Taylor's performance (due to the message board comments), but thought she was utterly believable & soulful in her role. I loved Prince John's performance. And even though he played the evil knight, I found myself surprisingly sympathetic to George Sander's character at the end; a man driven by his passion for Rebecca. I thought Robert Taylor's acting was wooden & one-dimensional. And whoever played the castle "guards" (who were overpowered by the good guys during the castle siege) - I give them the worst actors of the century award.
Suddenly is just OK
I was prepared to be really wowed by this film, because I think Frank Sinatra was a phenomenal actor, and I've always loved Sterling Hayden.
I think the subject matter and themes of war patriot vs. war killer and pacifist vs. non-pacifist had tremendous potential. But the script was absolutely horribly written. Even for the times, the dialog was corny & stilted & preachy. I felt like I was watching some old "Dragnet" episode. The characters were so superficially drawn I didn't feel like I really got to know any of them.
I'm glad I watched it just to see an old movie with Frank Sinatra, whose films are always interesting, but I wouldn't watch this one over. It just felt like an old TV show to me. If you want to see a well-done "assassination" thriller, see "The Manchurian Candidate".