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The Shining (1997)
suspenseful
17 April 2001
THE SHINING mini-series was a vast VAST improvement over the original film, which I've seen a couple times and never thought highly of beyond a great (but over-the-top) Jack Nicholson. The version, much more faithful to the novel, was a gazillion times better, so much so that I actually taped it and have seen it at least 10 times since it's premiere. After so many years on WINGS, Steven Weber shines wonderfully in a serious dramatic role, proving what a great actor he is, and I found his interpretation of Jack much better than Nicholson's. Rebecca DeMornay also thankfully erased the memory of Shelley Duvall in the original.

Read the book, watch the first film and get disappointed, then watch this great mini-series to get the satisfaction of seeing a great novel done justice. *****/*****
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The Fugitive (2000–2001)
best so far
10 October 2000
Along with C.S.I., this is the best new show of the season and the only one worthy of an audience. Daly is great, and while I'm not wild about the casting of Gerard, I'll give it time. Although I was slightly disappointed that the series is more an adaptation of the original and not the film (contrary to "other" reviews), it looks like it'll still work. Actually, it's a combination of both, with the technology of the 90s being worked in as well. The dialogue between the two leads was great, and the opening sequence with flashbacks intercutting with Kimble's escape is the best sequence of a television series I have ever seen (and I've seen a lot).

Great acting, great writing, great action and suspense, and great music all ad up for a great series that is the best of the new shows this Fall. Don't miss it!
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Dark Angel: Pilot (2000)
Season 1, Episode 0
um . . . boring as all hell?
10 October 2000
God, was there even a story to this? And what was the whole point of the sick friend who dies and other friend stuck in an affair subplots that had nothing to do with the story? And, sorry Alba fans, but talk about mis-casting. And how many times do we have to have the sidekick/informer character who's wheelchair-bound before a bank of computer monitors? Cameron must have something against guy's, too, with some of that dialogue.

I just hope they release Joel McNeely's soundtrack so that SOMETHING good can come of out this thing.
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Nash Bridges (1996–2001)
one of the last best cop shows!
10 September 2000
I've been watching since about midway through the second season, and I still love this show. The early episodes were the best, and the recent seasons have lost a little something, but I still enjoy it every week. Thankfully, Yasmine Bleeth is now gone. Let's hope they get a really good female character this coming season with the new girl. The show could use a bit more action from time to time, but it makes up for that in character interaction and great use of locations. Also good are the tender father-son moments between Nash and his father, moments you just don't see much in TV shows anymore. Let's hope this series goes on for many more seasons!
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The Pretender (1996–2000)
excellent!!
13 June 2000
A great series that was axed too soon (though the fourth season was rather weak). Jarod was the type of character we all wish we could be: super-intelligent and the kind who gets the bad guys all the time and does hilarious things to them in order to them to confess to just how bad they are. Man - I wish I could do stuff like that. Too bad Pretender's aren't real (or are they?). We could sure use some of them in the real world (doing good, of course). Let's hope TNT decides to pick up the series and continue it. One of the best shows of the 90s.
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Wings (1990–1997)
as funny as a sitcom should be
11 May 2000
Well, all the other reviews here have pretty much used up all the praise I could give this show. I never saw an episode of "Wings" that I didn't like. I came in during the third season and was instantly hooked. Unlike most sitcoms that die a slow, horrible death as the end crawls near, "Wings" never had a bad season, and the entire final season was just as good as any other they had done (and how often can THAT be said about a sitcom?) One of the best ensemble casts ever assembled for a sitcom, and it places in the Top Ten of my all-time favorite sitcoms. I just hope they do a reunion movie before the cast gets too old, which shouldn't be for awhile. Oh, well. Until then, I can watch the morning reruns on USA, just like I've been doing for the past several months.
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the spy who bored me
29 April 2000
Yes. THAT should've been the name of this film. And I thought the series couldn't have an entry worst than "Live and Let Die." But they finally topped that one with "The World Is Not Enough."

Bond is not Bond. Instead, he's John McClane working for MI6. Brosnan continues the downward spiral of the Bond franchise that began with the last film, "Tomorrow Never Dies." Not a single character in the film is interesting (and was actually wishing everybody would be killed so the film would hurry up and end), and Robert Carlyle is quite possibly one of THE worst Bond villains in history.

I don't think I can say anything about Denise Richards that hasn't been said before, and Sophie Marceau is just as bad. I still hate the new M. Kill her off. Bring in Patrick McNee as the new head of MI6. And get ride of Brosnan (who I do like, but not as Bond anymore) before he ruins the series even further. Get Adrian Paul. Much better choice. David Arnold's score is one of the ten worst soundtracks ever written in the history of film scores.

Avoid like the plague!!

THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH: 0/5
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Black Dog (1998)
just plain cool!
29 April 2000
"Black Dog" as some amazing stunts involving semi-trucks, which is basically on the movie is about. This is the only Patrick Swayze movie I've ever enjoyed. My favorite sequence is the (one of many) chase down the mountain road involving Swayze's truck and three other semis, the last of which (after losing it's trailer) takes part in the type of automobile crash I like the most: hitting another obstacle and flipping up through the air, spinning side-over-side, before landing in a twisted wreck.

Now, if only I could find a copy of George S. Clinton's unreleased score . ..

BLACK DOG: 5/5
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Three Kings (1999)
hmmm . . . Where to begin . . .
29 April 2000
This is quite possibly the worst war film I have ever seen, and it is definately one of THE worst films in cinematic history. Everything about this films is awful: the acting, the "story," the action, the music, the direction, the cinematography, etc. etc. I've seen better examples of the above-mentioned in 20-second TV commercials. (And you know you're in for a treat when the main character is introduced in a scene that has him getting a furious lap-job from a television reporter.)

What could have been an exciting adventure picture about a search for stolen gold instead turns out to be another artsy-fartsy film that tries to stand out from the rest with so-called "artistic style."

And don't even get me started on what is quite possibly the lamest gun fight ever committed to celluoid. A character fires a gun. The camera pans left-to-right in semi-slow motion (as if tracking the bullet), and comes to rest on the intended victim. We hear a dull thud as the bullet hits, and the man falls over. Each exchange of gun fire in this scene is played out that way.

None of the characters are even remotely interesting, but what do you expect from a film with Ice Cube and Mark Whalberg in the cast?

George Clooney appears to be one of those actors who will just tank and tank in feature films for years, making only one really great film ("The Peacemaker") and too many bad ones to even count. A shame, too, because I kind of like him.

If you want a see a good film that takes place in the Middle East around the time of the Gulf War (and the first film to be set at that time), rent 1991's "The Human Shield" with Michael Dudikoff. It has everything "Three Kings" doesn't, and it's a much MUCH better film.

THREE KINGS: 0/5
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The Silencers (1996)
not great, but certainly not bad!
29 April 2000
"The Silencers" is one of the most ambitious (and enjoyable) low-budget DTVs I've ever seen. Jack Scalia and Dennis Christopher are good, and the film is highlighted by a nearly-10-minute-long chase sequence involving a fuel tanker hauling mysterious cargo, numerous military and pedestrian vehicles, and a helicopter (the fate of which you will be amazed by!) The music by Louis Febre is very good as well, and while the effects of the subway collision are clearly models, the rest of that action sequence makes up for it.

The funny thing is, however, for a film that has an anti-violence message, it sure does have a lot of violence. Comdor (Christopher) explains to Scalia's son that there are better things to do with one's life than desire to play the role of action hero, and that violence isn't always the solution, then the two infiltrate the villain's secret complex and have a huge gun battle.

Still, a rousing adventure/sci-fi flick that was good enough for me to order a copy.

THE SILENCERS: 4.5/5
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The Three Stooges (2000 TV Movie)
VERY GOOD!
24 April 2000
A VERY well-made TV movie. (And how often can you say that?) It shows not just the humor this guys provide people with for many years, but the tears and frustration that went on behind the scenes. I've been watching the Stooges since I was a little kid, but this film gave me a whole new perspective on them. It showed me things I never knew about them. I should've recorded this to watch over and over again (again, how often can you say THAT about a TV movie?) Hopefully, it will be out on video before long. If you didn't see, you missed out on a fabulous two-hour treat.
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Pointman (1995– )
Another great series cancelled before it had a chance
24 April 2000
This will always be one of my all-time favorite television series. Jack Scalia was excellant as ex-con Constantine "Connie" Harper, providing justice for victims of crime week after week. Well-written scripts, excellent cast, and solid action combined to make another example of a great series that was cancelled WAY too early. At least it got to finish a full season. Watch it next time it's on.
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The Sweeper (1996 Video)
What can I say? AWESOME!!
23 April 2000
Why is it that a lot of low-budget, direct-to-video action movies are more fun that big-budget theatrical films? Take all the action in "The Rock," pump it with 2 trillion CCs of adrenaline, cast one of the boys from Spielberg's "E.T.," toss in a prologue with Jeff Fahey, and you've got "The Sweeper," a hard-charging crime drama with an action sequence occuring nearly every seven minutes. With everything from foot chases to violent shootouts, explosive car chases to a fight on a bi-plane, "The Sweeper" has got more action than most Hollywood films claiming to be action movies. Granted, it's not necessarily a well-written film (then again, there's hardly a film that is), but when it's got as much action and excitement as this film has, darn it - you just don't care. C. Thomas Howell is good, and you're bound to be fighting to catch your breath by the time the credits start rolling. Enjoy!
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The Face of Fear (1990 TV Movie)
Excellant!!
23 April 2000
"The Face of Fear" is one of the best television movies I've ever seen. The underrated Kevin Conroy (best known as the voice of the animated Batman) plays one intense and psychotic serial killer. It's great to watch his character go from calm and laid-back to burning mad with frustration as his intended victims - a psyhic (Lee Horsely) and his assistant (Pam Dawber) - continue to stay one step ahead of him as he stalks them throughout the empty skyscraper where they're working. The other actors give solid performances as well, but Conroy is the stand-out talent in this flick. Chase scenes and occasional physical encounters all lead to a thrilling climax as Horsely and Dawber attempt to scale the side of the building in their desperate attempt to reach the streets below, and safety. Great score by John Debney, too. Check it out next time to see it listed!
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surprisingly decent
20 February 2000
"Breeders" surprised me very much. Granted, it's extremely low-budget, but the effects were decent, and the creature was fantastic (though appeared to be an Alien/Pumpkinhead combo). I also felt leading actors Todd Jensen and Samantha Janus did a fine job with the material. Not the greatest, but certainly more enjoyable than the average B-grade monster flick. One question, though - why was there suddenly a huge oil refinery near the school? Guess they needed something to so they could have all the explosions.
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L.A. Heat (1996–1999)
Action. Action! ACTION!!
20 February 2000
"L.A. Heat" is the most action-packed television series, and the most enjoyable of all not-too-realistic series, I've ever seen. Each episode is full of feature film-quality stunts. I've never seen so many cars flipped, rolled, or blown up on one series! This puts all other cop/detective shows to shame (in terms of adrenaline). Wolf Larson and Steven Williams are dynamite together, and I'd love to see a feature film version. Enjoy!
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Oh, Grow Up (1999)
Great. Great! GREAT!
10 October 1999
I missed the first two episodes, but caught the third. This show is hilarious. I pretty much agree with Brian Hamilton's review of the show, but to me, Stephen Dunham (Hunter) is the best of the line-up. He's a talented actor with great comic timing. However, I don't expect this show to be around for much longer. It's a sitcom about best friends hanging out together and it's hilarious, so, like many other shows, it'll probably be cancelled. But make sure you see it before it happens. And if it does, I hope someone will give Dunham a crack at another show. He's absolutely terrific!
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This movie rocks!!
12 September 1999
Granted, this movie isn't a cinematic masterpiece (then again, what movie since "Raiders of the Lost Ark" or "The Postman" is?), but it's still a rollicking good time. I've been waiting to see this movie since it was made back in 1997, and I just recently did. I've been a fan of Michael Dudikoff for many years now, and this is my favorite film starring him. Who cares if it borrows from "Die Hard," "The Rock," "Air Force One" and "Executive Decision?" This movie rocks!! If you watch this movie knowing it's low-budget and expecting low-budget elements, you'll enjoy it. I know I did. My whole family did. In fact, I just spent $80 to buy an actual copy of it. I loved it that much. I watched in five times in five days. Though it doesn't rank in my Top Five favorite films of all time, it's certainly more enjoyable than most of the Hollywood films I've seen in the last two years. So sit down with a big bowl of popcorn, a big screen TV with a good stereo surround sound system (much like I did), and enjoy. You're in for a ride that won't quit!!
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Psycho (1998)
so what? can't wait to see it.
2 December 1998
Who cares if "Psycho" is being remade? IT'S JUST A MOVIE, PEOPLE! I've seen the original several times. It's good, well made and everything, but it's so slow. This one looks much more intense. Don't forget, Hitchcock remade "The Made Who Knew Too Much" TWICE!! Would you rather see Gus van Sant remake "The House On Haunted Hill" or "It! Terror From Beyond Space"? I didn't think so. "Psycho" (1998) may be one of the few good movies to come out this year.
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Fatal Frames (1996)
Terrible, except for the end.
11 November 1998
This movie is utterly boring and tedious to sit through, but there is one good moment, and it's the last scene of the movie. Donald Pleasance is talking on a phone with another detective. He tells him he's heading back to the United States, but he has to be there before Halloween because "it looks like an old case has been re-opened." And then he walks off to catch his train with a cane. In the background, we hear John Carpenter's "Halloween Theme" playing. It's another case of a great ending in search of a better movie to be attached to.
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