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patrick_dunne

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164 reviews in total 
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1 out of 6 people found the following review useful:
It's OK, 16 June 2006
6/10

I don't feel as if I have much time to write this review, so I will keep it short. "Nacho Libre" is a film about an orphan who dreams of being rich, and becoming a Luchador, which is a type of Mexican Wrestler. He enters a contest, and wins money, even when he loses. He befriends a thief-type person (A character similar to Aladdin. That's the best way I can describe it.) who becomes his tag-team partner in wrestling.

The film has a few puns here and there. Most are somewhat funny, perhaps able to exert a chuckle, but the farting jokes are downright annoying. Jack Black doesn't do such a good job playing a Spanish orphan, because his accent gets annoying.

The film is quite silly, but the storyline, and the bad accent of Jack Black, brings it down to somewhat embarrassing. The storyline never seems to make much sense. For a period of the time, Jack Black wrestles without a mask, which is (I think) required. There seems to be no tag-team, and rather two people fighting in the ring at once instead of switching off.

Overall, the whole film is cliché some of the time, and has not enough good puns to keep you entertained for the entire running time. To me, it seems pretty much forgettable.

6/10

Note: It's a kids' film, so what's with the corn poking out some person's eye?

22 out of 43 people found the following review useful:
Calling it "Style-over-substance" would be a HUGE overstatement, for it's pretentious and horrid in many ways, 15 March 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I hate this movie a lot. I have been going on about it for a while, so I think it's time to take my anger out by making a review. I think I may have offended some people, and I apologize.

So, here it goes: "Kill Bill" is a very bad movie. I assume that Quentin Tarintino immediately drew in fans with "Pulp Fiction," because of its wit and it was high on the "cool" factor. I saw some of it, and I will say that it was impressive. But, it looks like Tartintino became lazy by making this and co-directing the crappy "Sin City."

The storyline of "Kill Bill" is about its name. Bill attacked a woman who we know as "The Bride." Her name is censored when mentioned. Now, "The Bride" wants revenge on Bill, and members of a gang called "The Deadly Viper Assassin Squad." So, she goes out and finds them and attacks them. The story ends there and it does… well, sort of.

The story is something that was thought up in a few minutes. The Bride wants to kill people, and she does. As simple as that. "Kill Bill Volume One" really is just shallow characters killing each other. First, she battles some woman. I have no clue what her name is though. Then, we find some history of The Bride. After, we find that The Bride was somehow knocked out. I forgot why. When she wakes up, we experience more brutal torture of people. Then, she gets a sword and kills lots of other people. The End.

I find this very similar to "Sin City." It's a gory, shallow and pretentious action film that was made to show off a visual style and action scenes. The only real difference is that "Sin City" had something close to a storyline. This one didn't.

Supposedly, this is Tarintino's homage to martial-arts films. So, that makes it a masterpiece? That makes it get onto the Top 250 Movies? Is that why it's rated so highly? It has plenty of references to other martial-arts films. For example, Uma Thurman wears a suit that looks similar to the suit worn by Bruce Lee in one of his previous films.

Well, "The Ring" has loads of homages to horror films, including "Rosemary's Baby," "Silence of the Lambs," and "Poltergeist." Where's that on the Top 250 movies? Well, the homages seem as a cover-up for the story's' weakness. Why does a bodyguard fight in a skirt? I know people get attacked in a number of outfits, but since when does a bodyguard decide to fight in a schoolgirl outfit? The anime scene is near pointless, and doesn't even look like anime! It looks more like an attempt at drawing realistically, and ends up looking pretty ugly.

Maybe it's because of the action. Well, there are only about two or three fight scenes, and they are only a bit exciting. There are plenty of other movies, which have better action. For example, "Ultraviolet" (Another bad movie) had more action than "Kill Bill" and a number of good fight scenes with good camera angles that gave it some flair. If that had homages to other films, would that be on the Top 250? I must say, even the action in "The Karate Kid" seemed to have a certain wit to it.

All the action in "Kill Bill" is meaningless. It is meant to entertain. But, with loads of blood, what fun could it be? Its fun to watch The Bride slash her way through people, but after severed limbs appear, it loses it's fun. The violence in "Saving Private Ryan" and (I think) the violence in "The Wild Bunch" had purpose. But this, like "Sin City," is just sick, cruel violence.

With that, there are PLENTY of movies with good action such as "Terminator 2: Judgment Day," "Princess Monoke," "House of Flying Daggers" and "The Quick and the Dead." All of these had better storyline that "Kill Bill", even if "The Quick and the Dead" seemed a little weak in that department.

Backing up to horror films, I see that this film plays out like a mix of "Scream" and "Hellraiser: Bloodline." One person repeatedly tortures victims (like Pinhead) with a blade. (Like "Scream") Sadly, it's not as thrilling as "Scream." It's as thrilling as "Hellraiser: Bloodline." The characters are thin. I'm not talking about thin, as in skinny, but lacking detail. Sure, "The Bride" gives a bit of inside info on them (The "inside info" is showing the character killing somebody else.) but the characters usually die after that.

The action seems too unrealistic. Our main character kills plenty of people, but how? She jumps in the air and lands on her sword (It's stuck into the stairs.) but how does she do that? There are some movies with unrealistic action sequences ("House of Flying Daggers," "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon") but those take place in ancient China. This takes place in a modern day setting and doesn't feel like either one of those films.

That's why I hate the film. I can go on and on, but why should I have to? I suppose I hate it for all these reasons. Maybe the hype killed it. Or, it could be because Dan Grant's review influenced me to hate it. Either way, I don't like it.

Yet, there are some good points to this movie. The action can be fun for some. I don't think torture is necessary though. The music was excellent. I liked the "Bang Bang" and "Twisted Nerve" song. I suppose it does seem interesting at parts, like when it turns into anime (even if the scene seemed pointless) or black-and-white. (But, this was already used in MANY other movies.)

But, it still stinks. To me, this is about as bad as "Ultraviolet"; it's shallow and uses style to cover up its crappiness.

2/10

Perhaps not totally emotional, but well-driven by great performances, 12 March 2006
7/10

Perhaps similar to "Ray," "Walk the Line" is a documentary on Johnny Cash, a country singer played by Joaquin Phoenix.

After a brief clip of Johnny's childhood, the main story starts off when he comes out with his record "Cry, Cry, Cry." So, he goes on tour with June Carter, (Reese Witherspoon) trying to make himself a country singer. He meets his partner, June and they become friends. But, Johnny wants to become more than just that. He does have a wife, but they aren't too close. "Walk the Line" is a story about character development and heart.

I believe the title "Walk the Line" either stands for one of Johnny's songs or walking the DUI line. (A test to make sure you aren't drunk.) If it's the second one, then it probably because Johnny gets drunk at one point. You see, Johnny had a rough life. His brother died, and his dad blamed it on Johnny. From there on, Johnny takes anger pills for those rough times. He also makes plenty of mistakes when trying to get June Carter to fall in love with him.

"Walk the Line" has a lot of country music. Reese Witherspoon is probably the best singer out of all of them, because of the neat tricks she can do with her voice. It also features plenty of Johnny Cash songs including "Rock n' Roll Groupie" and "Ring of Fire." Joaquin sings them with a deep voice and all his songs sound good. My favorite songs would have to be "Get Rhythm (When you get the Blues)" and "Time's a Wastin'". Of course, if you dislike country music, you probably shouldn't see it.

I found "Walk the Line" to be a little short in the storyline department. It has plenty of music, but the music takes up time for a story. It's simple. There are no major twists or turns. But, "Walk the Line" is about character development; not story.

That's where the drama comes from. It's about how characters change and feel. If the emotion came from the dialogue, it would probably fail emotionally. I thought more heart could have been put into the dialogue. But, with pretty deep characters and great performances, (Reese won an Oscar for giving enough sass to June, and for excellent vocals.) "Walk the Line" succeeds, even if there are few scenes of powerful emotion. I wouldn't call it amazing, as so many have, but it's powerful at various points in the movie.

Overall, "Walk the Line" may be a little short, but it's entertaining and occasionally powerful.

7/10

Good: Music and acting

Bad: A bit lacking in substance and dialogue

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
I don't understand Violet's world, 12 March 2006

"I was born into a world you may not understand." –Violet

That was probably what made the most sense in the movie.

"Ultraviolet" is about a woman named Violet who is turned into a vampire-like creature called a hemophage during and era called "The Blood Wars." These creatures were created due to an accident in the laboratories. Now, the humans and hemophages are at war. Violet steals a weapon, which turns out to be a child. The child has some stuff in his blood that can be used to kill all humans or all hemophages. So, she is constantly attacked in attempts to reach the "weapon." And there, the story ends.

It's all a collection of scenes where Violet kills people. Yes, it's entertaining, and it's brought flair by the camera, but it shows that Kurt Wimmer is lacking creativity when the story line constantly repeats itself. It seems great and absorbing at first, but after we are treated to the same type of scene over and over, it gets a bit irritating.

But, if "Ultraviolet" succeeds in anything, it provides good fun for its target audience, which is probably teenage boys. The whole world that we don't understand looks pretty good. Everything- the fight scenes, the set and especially the characters all look really good! The action is stunning and entertaining, even though there is a lot of it. The best scene was when she was getting chased by a helicopter. So, it has hot girls, plenty of action scenes, and loads of special effects. Add some music and weapons, and you have "Ultraviolet." Now, can you see why teenage boys would like it?

But, the movie is obvious style-over-substance. Every scene is short, and the next one has the characters in a different setting with a different subject on their mind. There are at least 3 or 4 of these scenes, and that shows a lack of creativity. Take this: Violet is about to battle 700 men, and then she ends up in a park with the "weapon child." Weird? I don't understand Violet's world.

What happened to fighting 700 men? How did a child get hidden in a case? How can she fight more people than her? How come she constantly changes color and clothes? How come she uses the gravity device in only one scene? How can she pass off as being human in the beginning scene? Why do the two hemopahges attack her? Why does one of the characters have something in his nose? What kind of weapon does she have that can transform? How come everybody shoots at everything?

To add to that, the story is thin. It's highly lacking of and depth. The only part that had enough detail (besides the background) was Violet. Every other character hardly has a personality, besides the ones that we would expect.

But, the fight scenes are entertaining. It's easier to rent the movie and skip the fight scenes, and stare at the special effects and main character, because this movie packs nothing that can be labeled as substance, unless you count an incoherent storyline. I don't understand Violet's world.

Don't forget. It has one of the worst lines in cinema. "Are you mental?"

Good: Action, good camera angles, special effects, hot girls

Bad: Shallow, bad dialogue, repeated and incoherent storyline,

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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Weak on the story, but it's safe to say that "The Quick and the Dead" is always quick, and never dead, 11 March 2006

Sam Raimi, the director of the "Spider-man" and "Evil Dead" series has created a fun, if flawed, modern western.

"The Quick and the Dead" is about a woman ("The Lady") who visits and old town, and enters a gun-fighting contest. Many people do that for the money, but she has more personal reasons. She wants to get back at John Henrod, the man who killed her father.

The main flaw in "The Quick and the Dead" is the storyline. It's a simple and predictable revenge story. You can predict the ending in a couple of minutes. The characters bear similarities to characters in other Westerns. For example, "The Lady" is the main character, but she is never "The Good Guy" because she insults the bartender and little girl that takes care of her room.

(After winning quick-draw Battle) Girl: "You did great out there!"

The Lady: "Grow up."

Don't forget about "The Kid." He bears similarities to the kid in "Unforgiven": self-centered, rude, young, restless, energetic, etc.

But, it's safe to say that "The Quick and the Dead" is always quick, and never dead. The quick-draw scenes are fun and exciting, and the film is brought to life by several music scores, including "Mars" from "The Planets." The camera zooms in and out during the quick-draw scenes, but it's annoying how it switches back and forth between two people when they're talking before a quick-draw battle.

One of the things I found interesting about "The Quick and the Dead" was how they cast Hackman as the villain. This was odd because he also starred in other westerns such as "Unforgiven," and "Bite the Bullet." So, maybe "The Quick and the Dead" doesn't succeed in storyline, but it does pack some good quick-draw scenes and entertainment. I wouldn't call it "extraordinary" or "a masterpiece," but its fun to watch.

Good: Quick action, good camera, good music, entertaining

Bad: Simple story

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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
A bit unrealistic, but succeeds in story, action and cinematography, 10 March 2006

"House of Flying Daggers" is the dramatic martial-arts movie starring Jin and Leo. (Two men who look way too similar)

A new dancer named Mei (Ziyi Zhang, "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon") is introduced to a work place. Jin is informed that Mei works for a dangerous group called "The House of Flying Daggers." So after she dances, Jin nearly rapes her (because he's drunk) and he is arrested. Mei is nearly arrested for being improperly dressed after the rape. But, she, and other dancers, claims she couldn't defend herself because she is blind. So, to test her, the government has her play "The Echo Game." I won't go into detail about that.

After the game, Mei attempts to kill one of the government members, but she fails, and gets arrested. Before she gets into the cell, the government tells her that she has to bring them to "The House of Flying Daggers" or she will be tortured. They lock Mei up, and allow her to think it over. Then, Jin bails Mei out in an attempt to escape. They escape, but only because it's a trap, and an attempt for the government to reach the "House of Flying Daggers."

-SPOILERS-

This is where the film starts off. In the beginning, we are treated to a really long adventure film. There are possibly way too many sword fights. Jin and Mei constantly fight their way through hundreds of foes, and when they can't win; daggers come out of nowhere to slay the baddies. I admit, this part is way too long, and seems plotted only for action scenes. But, I'll also admit, the bamboo forest scene was amazing.

The second part of the movie was when they finally reach "The House of Flying Daggers." There are a few twists in the story. After that, it becomes a soap opera kind of movie. Mei doesn't love Jin, but she loves Leo. That's how it's a soap opera-or at least a romance.

The ending is the final tragic battle between Jin and Leo, because they both wish to win Mei's heart. Jin nearly kills Mei, and that upsets Leo. This part was weird. Jin and Leo keep fighting until the weather somehow changes, and it starts snowing. Then, Mei comes back to life… somehow. I don't know how any of this happens, but it's semi-absorbing. It's great to watch, but it's unrealistic.

-SPOILERS-

The greatest thing about "Flying Daggers" is the beautiful cinematography. Well, the sets and special effects and visuals are stunning. Everything makes it look good, the costumes, the landscape, the stunts- it looks so good! I might go so far as to saying that the cinematography is better than that of "Sin City" and "Lord of the Rings." (Many will disagree.) The story is pretty good, but the first part seems way too long, the second is too short and the third is the shortest of all. Despite this, the story is actually pretty good. The ending is probably the most remarkable because it's "the final fight scene" and way more dramatic than other fight scenes in movies.

The flaw in the movie, (which was probably a flaw in "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon") was the fight scenes. We all enjoy a good fight scene once in a while, but not if it overdoes itself when it occurs too often and runs on too long. But, I won't pick on that. Instead, I will say that they are simply too unrealistic. I mean, come on! People dodge many, many attacks almost perfectly and flying several feet in the air. But, if you are a fan of the martial-arts genre, you should expect that.

It was well-acted and beautiful looking, but WAY too unrealistic. But, the visuals are enough to get it 4 out of 5, and everything else: the characters, the story, the action, the drama; just adds to that. I wouldn't call it amazing, or a masterpiece, but perhaps: somewhere close to that.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Great for any fans of the Dixie Chicks, 8 March 2006
8/10

"An Evening with the Dixie Chicks" is footage from one of the Dixie Chick's concerts. They play many songs, mostly ones from "Fly" and "Home." Some of them include "Sin Wagon,""Top of the World,""Lil' Jack Slade,""Long Time Gone," and "Wide Open Spaces." One thing that I found to be very odd was the lead singer, Natalie. She has a very good voice when singing, but sings better than talks. Sometimes she seems nervous and speaks too softly and quietly. She also raises her arms a lot whenever she sings. I have no clue at all why she does.

One thing that I also disliked was when she sang "Sin Wagon." I like the version on "Fly," but this sounded too weird. The song seemed too random-sounding too actually work as well as it did on the CD.

But, it's nice to report that "Top of the World" was done with as much neat perfection as it was in "Home." By the way, I think "Top of the World" is their best song.

On the DVD, you can choose from about 15 songs, and find out how many songs are one each CD, along with some history of the Dixie Chicks. Anyways, this is a great way for any fan to spend some extra time. I think that the CD's sound better, but that's just my opinion.

8/10 Feel free to send me a Private Message regarding this comment.

0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
I don't know why it's rated so highly, but it's probably because of the similarities to "Singin' in the Rain." It's a funny, heart-warming musical., 23 February 2006

"Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory" was based on Road Dahl's book "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory". It's about a young boy named Charlie who gets a Golden Ticket. This ticket allows him and a parent to enter the Chocolate Factory owned by Willy Wonka. There, we get something similar to a horror film-children are picked of one by one. Why? Because they are bad children.

I enjoyed this film, but I can't see why so many people like it. I thought the music was fantastic (ecspecially the "I got a Golden Ticket" song.) I thought it also had some good jokes, but I forgot what they were.

My only guess is that this-and the fact that it may be heart-warming to some is why people like it. For me, it was too weird and kind of overdid it. "Being John Malcovich" had a style of inventiveness, but this just seemed like many other films being called original; It's an adventure film with weird things that often appear.

I enjoyed it, but I never found it heart-warming.

Fans of this will like "Singin' in the Rain" (1952) and possibly "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." (2005)

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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Potter is back- but now with more thrills and seriousness than the first, 23 February 2006
7/10

"Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets" is the sequel to "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone." This time is his second year at Hogwarts, and something odd has been happening.

I don't remember the story exactly, except that Harry is constantly warned by Dobby that something bad is going to happen. Harry finds Dobby to be a nuisance but something is definitely going on. Weird things happen after that.

"Chamber of Secrets" is the most thrilling Harry Potter so far.(There's only been one before this.) I found it to be on the same level as "Prisoner of Azkaban" even if it's inferior to "Goblet of Fire." I don't think this has as much story as "Azkaban," but it has enough action and thrills to match "Goblet of Fire." It also works as a decent horror film, even if it won't scare too many, it's entertaining. The sense of mystery is there, as always.

With each new "Harry Potter," I suspect that the series will become darker and more mysterious. I just hope they don't ever get repeated.

8/10

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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Things aren't always what they appear, 20 February 2006

Daniel and his family have just moved to America. When he goes to school, he is constantly bullied by a black-belt karate student. Then, "The Old One" a.k.a. Myagi, who says he can train Daniel. However, his lessons are very unusual. For example, Daniel is reduced to painting fences and waxing cars. These lessons are not what they appear to be, but instead, they teach young Daniel how to defend himself.

This movie is also not what it appears to be. To quote Roger Ebert: "I took one look at the title and figured it was either (a) a sequel to Toenails of Vengeance, or (b) an adventure pitting Ricky Schroder against the Megaloth Man. I was completely wrong. THE KARATE KID was one of the nice surprises of 1984 -- an exciting, sweet-tempered, heart-warming story with one of the most interesting friendships in a long time."

Like Roger Ebert said, "The Karate Kid" is not an average kung-fu movie. No. It's a drama that starts out like another clichéd high school movie, but adopts a message and drama. After Daniel finds the meaning behind his training, the movie starts to head into a drama.

After Daniel learns the meaning of his lessons, the film gets dramatic. He learns that things aren't what they seem to be, and that karate is for self-defense; not fighting.

I remember having to watch this film for "P.A.C.E.," which was a program to help me remember and do better in school and crap like that. They had a lot of weird lessons and only made me watch "The Karate Kid" to teach me that things aren't always what they seem.

The main flaws in "Karate kid" are that the bathroom scene was too unrealistic and that there was a lot of swearing that might offend the younger ones. But, it was a good movie with enough heart, along with a moral.

It appears as a crappy, clichéd kung-fu movie, but ends up looking like a great drama.

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