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Star Trek (2009)
9/10
Great, BUT beware the PARADOXES of Time Travel and Alternate Realities!
13 May 2009
Warning: Spoilers
I've always had issues with time travel and the inherent paradoxes. Beyond that, alternate realities/alternate time lines is another issue for me, and there were very many of them in all the ST TV series.

One time in "Yoyager" it became so obvious a crewmen asked Captain Janeway about the paradoxes, and she replied quizzically, "the best thing to do is just not think about them".

Usually, broken time lines end up back to normal, but in this film nothing ends up as it was.

Remember the infamous episode of "Dallas" when an entire season of shows was wiped out as they were depicted merely as a dream? That is what this "Star Trek"movie just did on a gigantic scale - wiped out EVERYTHING we saw and know and accept as a given as part of the "canon". No Federation-Klingon Alliance, perhaps no Borg, and on and on.

In the movie, in the future, Spock fails to reach Romulus in time to create a singularity to save that world from a supernova. How exactly that was Spock's fault I failed to discern.

But Nero's Romulan ship, a mining ship, went with Spock's vessel through a singularity (created too late), and somehow went back through time instead of being scattered to the subatomic level or turned into pure energy, or whatever happens in a Black Hole. Romulus was destroyed by the supernova.

Nero blamed Spock, and somehow every planet in the Federation. This is not logical, and if Nero is merely insane, well, that detracts from his validity as a villain. Khan was not insane, certainly not to that degree.

Nero manages to drill a hole into a defenseless Vulcan, insert some "red matter", that can create a singularity, and this all of Vulcan and six billion people are destroyed, while Spock watches! Off next to Earth, which was also equally defenseless, except for their relatively few star ships. The excuse for that was they were off elsewhere on another assignment.

Well, after some heroics, Nero and his ship get sucked into another singularity and they vanish. To reappear in the sequel, in the present, past or future?? Who knows.

So Vulcan is gone in the film. Romulus is still there as it got destroyed only in the future. Kirk, while still a cadet at the academy, get command of the Enterprise and, at the film's end, permanent promotion from the Federation from mere cadet to captain! Puhleeze.

Why can't Spock go back through another singularity and change the time line?? How one can determine where in the past or future you will end up in going through one of those I can not figure out.

So, there is no single reality. There is any number of time lines depending on who changes what in the past. as I said, I always had issues with this. And also as I said, even Spock made a reference at the end to "cheating". It does make it easier for the screenwriters to just blow up everything that happened in the Star Trek world and "canon".

Weirdest paradox, at the end. Young Spock meets old Spock, and they have a conversation!! Think about that. It should be impossible.

So, you can see the paradoxes. Right captain Janeway? What's that, captain? "Just don't think about them"?? Isn't that "cheating", as Spock said? Guess so. As with so many shows, be it "24" or whatever, suspension of disbelief is required.

So turn off your scientific logic and just enjoy the fun. But remember, like Vulcan, everything you knew about the Star Trek universe is now gone - at least until someone goes back and corrects the time line! The movie is PG-13, and almost a PG. I would have preferred an R with some real gore.

Superb special effects, sound effects, score, set design, costumes, etc. Well acted, and many touches that are reminiscent of episodes, scenes or events from the original series.

The interior of the Enterprise looked nothing like that on the cheesy set of the first TV series, thankfully.

When did Romulans become giant super-powerful bald guys covered in what looked like Maori facial tattoos?? Or was that supposed to be only typical to that crew? Of course, the Federation first saw Romulans quite late, in "The Balance of Terror" episode.

Major Plot Hole: apparently both Vulcan and Earth were totally defenseless without so much as a phaser bank available. Even Star Fleet headquarters in California, a population center, had no defense, neither shields, nor phasers, and certainly not photon torpedoes. Nothing. That big "drill" in the film was easily knocked out with light hand-held weapons.

Minor Plot Hole: The Romulan vessel was not originally some all-powerful doomsday machine from another race; it was a working mining vessel. Even though from the not too distant future, it all too easily handled not only Federation but Klingon warships.

Winona Ryder played Spock's mother! Who dies. Ben Cross played his father Sarek, now that Mark Lenard is dead. And Leonard Nimoy played one of the Spocks. Speaking of Spock, a much thinner and less stacked version of Uhura makes out with Spock in the film. And when did they become an item??
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7/10
Enjoyable. Adequate. But Pales Compared to the 1939 classic.
29 September 2002
If you did not see the 1939 Korda brothers classic of the same name you will find this version entirely adequate and satisfying; if you did, you will likely be disappointed.

This version is apparently based far more faithfully on the novel - which means it is set in 1885 instead of 1898, and does not include the huge Battle of Omdurman or the prison revolt. The one battle in this version, the breaking of the British square, was better done in the earlier version which was far larger in scope and size than this more modest effort. Basing it on the novel also means more talk, more romance, and that is too bad.

Various attempts are made to humanize the natives, and there is some PC questioning about British imperialism, although nowhere does the movie mention that the British in Sudan in the 1880's were stopping the slave trade, besides protecting the Suez Canal.

The plot we basically know: a young British officer who resigns from his regiment when they are about to go off to war is denounced as a coward by his friends who give him the feathers; he then has to prove his courage by rescuing some of them disguised as a native.

That is where there is a real problem. In the 1939 version, Harry Faversham, the officer, goes to considerable lengths to disguise himself, such as being branded on the face and pretending to be a mute. Here, he just sort of muddles through. It is not convincing. He is befriended in a way by an all-too muscular native - a hackneyed convention.

The acting is no more than adequate, and in that it is not that different from the earlier version, although missing here is the great scene at the dinner table with C. Aubrey Smith, the venerable actor playing an old general, discoursing on past battles and the tradition Faversham needs to uphold. A shame that wasn't in this film.

Some of the actors having pierced left ears is entirely out of character. The final fight where a drugged and half dead Harry is further beaten almost to death - but then suddenly kills his attacker - is tired and old and almost embarrassingly bad.

Well, this was better than the old TV version of some years ago, but it pales compared to the 1939 version. So be warned.
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Maytime (1937)
8/10
Superbly Crafted. And One of the Saddest Films I've Ever Seen.
6 September 2002
I won't repeat what some of the other reviews have said, other than to add my perspective. This was a marvelous film, made with great skill in every way, from screenplay to songs. It is also, along with "Waterloo Bridge" and "How Green Was My Valley" (see reviews), one of the saddest movies I have ever seen.

Of course it manipulates us into reaching for the hankies, but it does a good job at it. I consider myself a big cynical guy, but this movie! Man. I saw it many years ago, and to this day if someone mentions the word "sweetheart", I think of the song "Will You Remember?" and start getting teary-eyed!

Yes, I have it on video. I ALSO HAVE THE RADIO BROADCAST! In 1944, the Lux Radio Theater reprised the popular film in an hour long broadcast with the original stars. The adaptation was wonderfully done. The only change of note was Nelson Eddy sang the rousing French march, "Le Regiment du Sambre et Meuse" instead of Jeanette MacDonald. I downloaded this gem from the Bearshare peer to peer service. It is worth looking for and downloading.

Just don't anyone ever say "Sweethearts" to me - in any context at any time I think of "Maytime" and get sad. Of course some people love those types of films.

One memorable movie. But it made me so sad I almost wish I never saw it. Almost!
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Signs (2002)
3/10
MANIPULATIVE, EMPTY, PRETENTIOUS. In otherwords, IT STINKS.
2 August 2002
I for one am very tired of being manipulated by M. Night Shyamalan, and offered movies with pretentious messages and warped little twists. "Signs" is similar to "Unbreakable" in that style, and this is a real disappointment.

In the trailers and ads we are shamelessly deceived into thinking this is about aliens and will be real scary. It is really about some corny internal spiritual journey the main character (Gibson) takes after his wife's death in a car crash. What the message is remains unclear; supposedly it is about "faith", those who have it and those who don't. But the dopey end seems to mock Christian beliefs, leaving us with an entirely empty message with no point or reolution.

Shyamalan uses film school tricks and ideas lifted from various other movies to build the tension, while trying to get us to emotionally "bond" with the farm family being visited by aliens. This direction is so obvious I sat there analyzing it more than feeling it.

At the end what have we? A dead alien who is more than a mere alien, a baseball bat, water phobia, and no discernible resolution on the matter of faith and The Great Beyond. What the alien really is up to struck me as ridiculous for various reasons.

WAIT FOR THE DVD.
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9/10
SUPERB STUDY IN COMMAND - Not Just another "Submarine Movie".
19 July 2002
Warning: Spoilers
Any reviewer who sees this fine film - and great character study - as merely "another submarine movie" is braindead. The location happens to be on a submarine, but "K-19" is in fact a marvelous study of the problems of command, its responsibilities, and the ongoing struggle between the new captain's methods and those of the former captain whom he replaced. It is their battle of styles and personalities that makes this movie a great success.

This film depicts (and dramatizes) an historic event, for decades kept secret until the end of the Soviet Union. So I don't believe there are SPOILERS BELOW, but there might be.

The date is 1961 - the height of the Cold War - and the Soviet Union has launched its first nuclear-powered submarine complete with an unarmed ICBM. The purpose is to show the Americans the Soviet's nuclear capability by launching the test missile from the Arctic ice cap, thus making a first strike on "The Motherland" less likely. It is another step in the concept of Mutually Assured Destruction.

Captain Polenin (Liam Neeson) of this new K-19 submarine is pushed down a notch in the chain of command when an electric circuit fails during a test firing and he is rather arrogant with the resident admiral observing. Polenin becomes Executive Officer and Captain Vostrikov (Harrison Ford) is appointed to command the boat - a vessel already plagued with bad luck and construction deaths; hence, the nickname "The Widowmaker".

Vostrikov is under strict orders to complete his mission (the test firing) on schedule which the Soviet high command is pushing to have completed as soon as possible. The problem with this, a fatal flaw. is that hurrying the mission has resulted in shoddy workmanship on various ship components; they don't even have radiation suits in case of a nuclear accident the ship carrying only useless chemical suits.

Vostrikov (Ford) takes over the boat to some resentment by the crew, especially the officers, who favored Polenin (Neeson). The drills that Vostrikov immediately begins clearly shows the crew is unready, with some of the drills looking highly inept and chaotic - a bad reflection on Polenin. Vostrikov continues to push the crew despite injuries and even more resentment, a near-crisis comes when K-19 is ordered to dive to 300 meters (near crush depth) and then it emergency surfaces crashing right through the Arctic ice, at which point Vostrikov immediately, and successfully, launches the missile.

Throughout all of this Polenin advised against what Vostrikov was doing, even to the point of leaving his post in a huff and later berating Vostrikov for endangering the crew. Accurately, the captain tells his XO the men had to be pushed to the limit not only to see what they could do but to, in effect, mold them into a stronger crew ready to die as needed in the future. Their camaraderie while playing on the polar ice is indication of this.

Vostrikov, whom someone I read stupidly compared to "Capt. Bligh", was right, and Polenin, whose crew was so sloppy in drills, was mostly wrong. But there is more to this.

Vostrikov's father was both a Soviet hero - and a prisoner in the GULAG. Perhaps as such, he has always made special efforts to be totally loyal to his country and the Party. That blind loyalty will eventually be tested by the disaster about to befall K-19, a situation where the humanity and flexibility of Polenin will be found to be more than appropriate.

The boat's nuclear reactor's coolant suddenly develops a leak and fails. Despite what we heard in the film there was no real danger of "a thermonuclear explosion"; there WAS a danger of the core melting right through the hull and likely exploding as it hit the cold water. The movie's attempts to suggest that there would a nuclear explosion and possible war between the U.S. and Soviet Union were strained. Polenin's emotionalism hits bottom when he foolishly blames Vostrikov for this disaster for having ordered the former reactor officer off the ship for being drunk on duty.

Vostrikov now is confronted by the horrid reality: there is no way to save the submarine and crew and avoid nuclear core meltdown without repairing the reactor coolant - and to do this sailors have to enter the radiation-filled chamber wearing nothing more than useless chemical suits. Heroically, they do, and more heroically others also do even after seeing the first repair crew leave the reactor deathly sick and vomiting. Only the new young reactor officer balks at entering this chamber of death, although he redeems himself later with great bravery. We fairly well knew he would succumb having seen him earlier kiss his fiance good-by.

K-19, the reactor in no immediate danger of meltdown but now filled with radiation, is forced to surface, and Vostrikov initially resists all suggestions from Polenin and others to evacuate the boat, or request assistance from the Americans who have seen the submarine. At this point, one of Polenin's officers, and even the commissar (political officer) stage mutiny and seize the vessel from Vostrikov at gunpoint. That is the same commissar who ironically earlier indoctrinated the crew with anti-American propaganda.

Polenin refuses to take command and puts down the mutiny. There seems little doubt now that he now understood better the loyalty and devotion to duty of Vostrikov, and how effective and cool in the crisis the captain was. Vostrikov, on the other hand, better recognizes the need to appeal to the humanity of the crew, and shows his own humanity by seeing to it K-19's sick crew is evacuated to another Soviet sub despite orders to the contrary.

Vostrikov and Polenin have finally reached a mutual understanding as they finally recognize and respect each other's views and methods.Together they were better than either could have been individually. The final scene twenty-eight years later at the graves of those sailors who died saving the sub and their crewmates was moving indeed.

Harrison Ford and Liam Neeson were excellent both separately and in their chemistry. Comments by some about their accents not being adequate are trivial, although Sean Connery's was better "Hunt for Red October". The rest of the cast, though no-name, was also fine. Kathryn Bigelow's direction is quite suitable and good, although it doesn't take a genius to figure out how to use moving cameras, quick cuts, and dramatic closeups aboard a submarine to great effect; there are enough submarine films out there already to supply examples.

One of those films, "Crimson Tide", depicts a different sort of power struggle between the senior captain and the new XO over nuclear launch protocol. That is entirely different than the more subtle struggle in "K-19" which I found fascinating.

The sets are suitably grimy and dark to depict a Soviet sub in 1961 that does not even appear to be very well made or especially advanced technologically. The danger of something going wrong on K-19 always seems probable.

"K-19" is an intelligent film and I found it absorbing. It is not a puerile exercise in special effects. The relationship between Vostrikov and Polenin was simply compelling. A wonderful movie.
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9/10
COMPELLING, STYLISH, and EXCELLENT. (With flaws).
13 July 2002
Warning: Spoilers
"Road to Perdition" is not up to the great standards of the classic "The Godfather", as I've heard some reviewers suggest; there are just too many small problems with the plot, to be related below. But it certainly one of the best made films I have seen in a long time (dark and gloomy though it is) and is just a damn fine piece of art; it is in fact so consciously stylish it is almost overdone at times, but isn't.

Directed by Sam Mendes ("American Beauty") the film is beautiful to look at; the scenes of 1931 Chicago are especially memorable. Yes it's dark, but Winter in Chicago at the height of the Depression was very dark indeed. David Self wrote the screenplay, and played down some of the violence in the book; I had the most problems with the screenplay for reasons I'll get to. Conrad L. Hall filmed "Road to Perdition" perhaps with too much detail and concern for evocative imagery.

We are taken back to eastern Illinois early in 1931 where Michael Sullivan (a laconic Tom Hanks) works as an enforcer and possible hitman for wealthy gangster boss John Rooney, played with effective emotion by Paul Newman. Sullivan is also raising a family with a wife (Jennifer Jason Leigh in what amounts to a cameo role) and two boys.

Sullivan and Rooney had an almost father-son relationship for decades. The problem is Rooney's son, Connor, who is a weak, corrupt, and homicidally psychotic, and Daniel Craig portrays him superbly within the limits of the script. And this is the biggest problem I had with the movie.

Connor is so very despicable and beneath contempt, so entirely evil and without any shred of redeeming qualities, he is painfully two dimensional. His murderous actions destroy the relationship between his father and Sullivan and are what drive everything that happens in the film. There is no attempt to even explain what motivates Connor to do what he does. This is a real flaw in the film. Villains with depth, going back to such as Magua in "Last of the Mohicans", make the events that transpire more meaningful. His attack on Sullivan's family, after one of the boys sees Connor and his father kill three people, begins Sullivan's search for vengeance and retribution.

This brings up a plot hole. Rooney (Newman) knew all along his son was not only robbing him but killing his own men to cover up his actions. And yet he did nothing about it, not even just cut him out of the business and exile him to Ireland, where he suggested Sullivan go. Instead, he allowed Connor to inexorably bring him to ruin. Just because Connor is his son does not explain this adequately.

Sullivan, on the run with his twelve-year-old son, is out for vengeance, and he sees Frank Nitti (a superb Stanley Tucci), whom he knows, running the Chicago mob with Al Capone in Alcatraz, but Rooney has already convinced Nitti that for business reasons Connor should be kept in protective custody from Sullivan - and to contract a hitman to kill him. So, Sullivan is forced to wage war by stealing Mob money in various banks while avoiding - or shooting it out with - the hitman, a creepy and odd fellow named Maguire played by Jude Law. It is also obvious that Nitti despises Connor, who will survive so long as his father lives. It is a business decision, after all, by Nitti.,

Sullivan demonstrates his naivete when he brings proof to Rooney of Connor's ongoing theft. Of course Rooney already knows. . . and then Sullivan finally realizes what I realized at least half an hour earlier: the only way to get to Connor is to first take out his father - who had been a surrogate father to Sullivan. His delayed awakening to what had to be done came too abruptly to satisfy me.

Sullivan's son, played introspectively by Tyler Hoechlin, follows his father around throughout his six week odyssey, learning to both drive and handle a gun. It seems as though "Road to Perdition" could very easily have been told more through the eyes and mind of the son. Nevertheless, he gave a good performance.

Despite my complaints with parts of the plot and excessive attempts at artistic cinematography, this remains an excellent film well worth seeing. It is just no classic, such as "The Godfather". Nine out of ten! Newman is guaranteed to get awards for this, as is Mendes for the direction.

There are other plot holes listed below but they may be spoilers.

WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW!

After Connor committed his first murder, and then saw Michael Jr. watching, why didn't Sullivan perceive the obvious and kill Connor blaming it on the already dead guys? Everyone hated Connor anyway.

When Connor gave him that sealed letter, supposed from Rooney, to take to that coke head club owner/pimp, why was Sullivan so naive as to not open it and read it first? Why would he trust Connor after that murder?

During the first shoot out with Maguire, why didn't Sullivan finish him off when he was down? It would have taken a second and prevented him from resurfacing later. It only made sense.

Was Maguire acting on Nitti's orders at the end? Didn't Nitti say it was all over on the phone?

Why was Sullivan so nonchalant at the end of the film in that house? Like he didn't have enemies including Maguire, among others?

When Sullivan was shot, his son sure lucked out finding that farm family that neither called the police nor objected to Sullivan recuperating there, and then didn't mind Michael Jr. moving in. That kind of luck strained credulity.

Why did Rooney do absolutely nothing to stop Connor even when he knew he was robbing him and even committing murders of his friends? There were any number of things he could have done besides just kill him.

When Sullivan shot Maguire in the back at the end of the movie why didn't the bullet go through Maguire and hit Michael Jr. standing in front of him?
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9/10
COMPELLING, STYLISH, and GREAT! (With flaws).
12 July 2002
Warning: Spoilers
"Road to Perdition" is not up to the great standards of the classic "The Godfather", as I've heard some reviewers suggest; there are just too many small problems with the plot, to be related below. But it certainly one of the best made films I have seen in a long time (dark and gloomy though it is) and is just a damn fine piece of art; it is in fact so consciously stylish it is almost overdone at times, but isn't.

Directed by Sam Mendes ("American Beauty") the film is beautiful to look at; the scenes of 1931 Chicago are especially memorable. Yes it's dark, but Winter in Chicago at the height of the Depression was very dark indeed. David Self wrote the screenplay, and played down some of the violence in the book; I had the most problems with the screenplay for reasons I'll get to. Conrad L. Hall filmed "Road to Perdition" perhaps with too much detail and concern for evocative imagery.

We are taken back to eastern Illinois early in 1931 where Michael Sullivan (a laconic Tom Hanks) works as an enforcer and possible hitman for wealthy gangster boss John Rooney, played with effective emotion by Paul Newman. Sullivan is also raising a family with a wife (Jennifer Jason Leigh in what amounts to a cameo role) and two boys.

Sullivan and Rooney had an almost father-son relationship for decades. The problem is Rooney's son, Connor, who is a weak, corrupt, and homicidally psychotic, and Daniel Craig portrays him superbly within the limits of the script. And this is the biggest problem I had with the movie.

Connor is so very despicable and beneath contempt, so entirely evil and without any shred of redeeming qualities, he is painfully two dimensional. His murderous actions destroy the relationship between his father and Sullivan and are what drive everything that happens in the film. There is no attempt to even explain what motivates Connor to do what he does. This is a real flaw in the film. Villains with depth, going back to such as Magua in "Last of the Mohicans", make the events that transpire more meaningful. His attack on Sullivan's family, after one of the boys sees Connor and his father kill three people, begins Sullivan's search for vengeance and retribution.

This brings up a plot hole. Rooney (Newman) knew all along his son was not only robbing him but killing his own men to cover up his actions. And yet he did nothing about it, not even just cut him out of the business and exile him to Ireland, where he suggested Sullivan go. Instead, he allowed Connor to inexorably bring him to ruin. Just because Connor is his son does not explain this adequately.

Sullivan, on the run with his twelve-year-old son, is out for vengeance, and he sees Frank Nitti (a superb Stanley Tucci), whom he knows, running the Chicago mob with Al Capone in Alcatraz, but Rooney has already convinced Nitti that for business reasons Connor should be kept in protective custody from Sullivan - and to contract a hitman to kill him. So, Sullivan is forced to wage war by stealing Mob money in various banks while avoiding - or shooting it out with - the hitman, a creepy and odd fellow named Maguire played by Jude Law. It is also obvious that Nitti despises Connor, who will survive so long as his father lives. It is a business decision, after all, by Nitti.,

Sullivan demonstrates his naivete when he brings proof to Rooney of Connor's ongoing theft. Of course Rooney already knows. . . and then Sullivan finally realizes what I realized at least half an hour earlier: the only way to get to Connor is to first take out his father - who had been a surrogate father to Sullivan. His delayed awakening to what had to be done came too abruptly to satisfy me.

Sullivan's son, played introspectively by Tyler Hoechlin, follows his father around throughout his six week odyssey, learning to both drive and handle a gun. It seems as though "Road to Perdition" could very easily have been told more through the eyes and mind of the son. Nevertheless, he gave a good performance.

Despite my complaints with parts of the plot and excessive attempts at artistic cinematography, this remains an excellent film well worth seeing. It is just no classic, such as "The Godfather". Nine out of ten! Newman is guaranteed to get awards for this, as is Mendes for the direction.

There are other plot holes listed below but may be spoilers.

WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW!

After Connor committed his first murder, and then saw Michael Jr. watching, why didn't Sullivan perceive the obvious and kill Connor blaming it on the already dead guys? Everyone hated Connor anyway.

When Connor gave him that sealed letter, supposed from Rooney, to take to that coke head club owner/pimp, why was Sullivan so naive as to not open it and read it first? Why would he trust Connor after that murder?

During the first shoot out with Maguire, why didn't Sullivan finish him off when he was down? It would have taken a second and prevented him from resurfacing later. It only made sense.

Was Maguire acting on Nitti's orders at the end? Didn't Nitti say it was all over on the phone?

Why was Sullivan so nonchalant at the end of the film in that house? Like he didn't have enemies including Maguire, among others?

When Sullivan was shot, his son sure lucked out finding that farm family that neither called the police nor objected to Sullivan recuperating there, and then didn't mind Michael Jr. moving in. That kind of luck strained credulity.

Why did Rooney do absolutely nothing to stop Connor even when he knew he was robbing him and even committing murders of his friends? There were any number of things he could have done besides just kill him.

When Sullivan shot Maguire in the back at the end of the movie why didn't the bullet go through Maguire and hit Michael Jr. standing in front of him?
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Reign of Fire (2002)
5/10
FUN, BUT DUMB HUMANS MAKE YOU ROOT FOR THE DRAGONS
12 July 2002
The concept borders on the ludicrous: a subway construction site in London (deeper than those in the U.S.) unearths a live DRAGON that spawns a multitude of other dragons who destroy London, and manage to virtually take over the earth despite nuclear weapons being used against them. Humanity is scattered to small communities.

It gets more crazy. Two hundred soldiers can be quickly reduced to nothing but ashes, totally cremated, by the fire breathing dragon, but their leader is unharmed hiding under a tank - he should have been dry roasted by the heat.

It gets crazier. To fight the dragon scourge humanity decides that if they kill the one male who is fertilizing that host of female egg-laying dragons no more baby dragons will appear and they will die out. One problem with that: just because only one male animal fertilizes many females does NOT mean there are no other males! How many male trout, or other animals, die or are fought off by the dominant male, when trying to fertilize or mate with the female? A great many. So the method of defeating the dragons is ridiculous. It would never work.

Even more ridiculous is Matthew McConaughey, leading the soon-to-be-cremated American army unit. He overacts so much he is almost laughable, while at the same time looking like he is undergoing Steroid Rage; he is so pumped up since the last time we saw him he must have been hitting "the juice". Perhaps he thought "Reign of Fire" was a satire.

Now for the good parts. The dragon FX are great. The dragons are fun. Burned out London reminds me of Stalingrad in World War Two from "Enemy at the Gates". Very nicely done.

The bottom line is that the humans were so stupid and obnoxious in this film I am very sorry the dragons didn't kill them all.

BTW, if you like movies about London subway stations unearthing some sort of other-worldy horror, check out "Quatermass and the Pit"; it got a 7.0 on this site.
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Insomnia (2002)
8/10
Movie is GOOD; PACINO IS GREAT
4 July 2002
Al Pacino is clearly now the front runner for Best Actor Award. He is simply marvelous in this film as a tortured detective.

In Alaska there was a murder, and two detectives from Los Angeles are sent to assist. (I was never sure why!). The problem is that there has been an Internal Affairs Investigation and the younger member of this team is likely to testify against the Pacino character. So when while chasing the killer that detective is shot (accidentally?) by Pacino we and he are left to wonder about the motivation.

Pacino, who previously falsified evidence to convict a known killer (why the IA investigation) now falsifies more evidence to coverup his shooting of the younger detective - the twist is that the killer knows this and begins to blackmail Pacino, who can't sleep either due to the lack of sunsets at the that high a latitude (this is Alaska) or his guilty conscience. We are never sure of which, and neither is he.

Pacino is marvelous. Hilary Swank good. Robin Williams is creepy as the killer who it turns out is just as much a tortured ambiguous soul as the Pacino one is. This is not a film with black and white borders regarding morality and right and wrong, although at the climax Pacino makes an attempt to clarify that issue in his own mind.

The plot works. The setting in Alaska does a good job in giving the feeling of isolation Pacino feels, and he is simply wonderful.

Almost certainly "Insomnia" will be regarded as a Film Noir classic.
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4/10
OK, but A DISAPPOINTING COMMERCIAL
4 July 2002
You know the plot - if you can call it a "plot". What MIB II really is is a big excuse for the latest digital FX, and shameless product placement commercials. Was it bad? No. But besides being surprisingly SHORT in length, there is really nothing original here nor anything that tries to surpass the first MIB. It is just bigger explosions and weirder aliens, with absolutely nothing of a real plot nor characters we care about.

Lara Flynn Boyle - the ultra-skinny Lara Flynn Boyle - is one of those digital creations: she actually has a computer-enhanced body here. She's fine as the cartoonish villain.

Will Smith is always good, but the attempts to give him a romantic relationship with a human female are strained and go nowhere. If the movie was a little longer they could have done something with this, but I assume the film is aimed at ten-year-olds with a short attention span.

Rip Torn and Tommy Lee Jones, also fine actors like Smith, but are limited by the script which doesn't give them much to work with. We've seen all these same expressions with MIB I.

The most memorable "actor" is the talking dog. Which tells you everything you need to know about how lame the script is and how shallow the characters are.

MIB II also goes right into shameless product placement with ads for actual products and brand names all over the place. They even got in a plug (or cameo) for Michael Jackson - who looks like more of a freak than the two-headed alien. And I wasn't impressed that much by the digital FX either on him. The alien, not Jackson. Michael always looks very weird and scary.

Anyway, it was a passable ninety with lots of effects. I saw it at a half price matinee and even then it was hardly worth it.
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9/10
SUMPTUOUS and MAGNIFICENT
4 July 2002
No movie could ever do more to personify the word "sumptuous". The film spared no expense in recreating the court of the French kings in pre-Revolution France in the 18th century. It is immensely enjoyable. It was definitely a prestige movie for the studio.

It starts with the young Austrian princess, Marie Antoinette, going to Paris for her arranged marriage with the grandson of the King who will be the next French monarch. (All of the king's male children had died young). Marie's reception as a wide-eyed innocent by the opulent French court, complete with fanfares, is remarkable and memorable.

Marie soon experiences the byzantine intricacies of the French court and the realities of her new life with Louis - her diffident and none-too-bright young husband. Both we in their mid-teens when married. France soon heads inexorably towards revolution and it will mean a tragic fate for the Royal family.

My only complaint bout the film is not that Norma Shearer was just a bit too old for the role; her fine acting and the makeup and lighting take care of that well enough. The complaint is an historical one: it was a bit too sympathetic towards Marie, and even Louis, both of whom ended up beheaded because they encourage foreign armies to invade France and put the king back on the throne. Marie's over-spending is also glossed over. But she was tragic in her way.

Louis, played beautifully by Robert Morley, was even more tragic. In another life he would have been happy and accomplished as the clock maker he always wanted to be.

Joseph Schildkraut was superb as the unctious and conniving Duke who had no problem switching sides as the political winds blew. Gladys George was very effective as Madame du Barry. Tyrone Power was merely OK as a love interest for Marie which seemed rather gratuitous.

Along with Abel Gance's "Napoleon", and "A Tale of Two Cities" (the Ronald Colman version), this is as good as it gets as an historical drama of the French Revolution. Exciting, emotional, sad, affecting, and very memorable. Superb.
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7/10
ENJOYABLE and DIVERTING
3 July 2002
I haven't read the book, but the movie stands up well on its own, and is much better than that PC potboiler "Sum of All Fears".

The plot was intriguing and kept me interested throughout. Damon and Potente are well matched and do a fine job. She is a German actress who seems to have managed to speak well unaccented American English. The mystery of who the Damon character really is, and how he discovers his special talents, was effective. The fight scenes and supporting cast all were good.

I didn't buy two scenes: Damon's Human Fly act outside the U.S. Embassy, and the Ride the Corpse Down Five Stories (and walk away??) act. The last one was a bit much to take straining credulity.

But all in all it was a fun movie and I'm glad I saw it. Seven out of ten. Maybe seven and a half!
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2/10
POLITICALLY CORRECT Unbelievable Potboiler
28 June 2002
Morgan Freeman is always good. But this plot is absolutely contrived and unbelievable, and entirely in bad taste with the reality of terror attacks on the U.S.

What is absolutely INEXCUSABLE is the gutless Politically Correct garbage that has turned Islamic terrorists into some sort of Neo-Nazis! Is Hollywood too PC to show Arabs as terrorists and mass murderers?? It wasn't Swedish nuns or Japanese businessmen who hit America on 9/11. How lame this movie is. Skip it. Go see "Minority Report" or "Bourne Identity" instead.
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8/10
Derivative, but COMPELLING and DAMN GOOD
27 June 2002
I'll keep this quick and to the point.

8 out of 10 - a damn good and compelling film that went by quickly.

Problems? Some.

There were so many characters it was difficult to develop any; it was like a revolving door of cast members. Max von Sydow stands out and has been doing this kind of character for a long time, he also looks younger than when he made "The Exorcist" years ago. Peter Stormare was good in a small role as the fellow who replaces Cruise's eyes (that's right) and would have been interesting in the von Sydow role.

Another problem is that the movie is derivative in many ways of various sci fi and police dramas too many to list.

The end scenes are rather saccharine, too upbeat, and slightly contrived.

The entire plot becomes somewhat contrived and slightly illogical towards the end when the von Sydow character faces his dilemma of how to preserve the concept of Pre-Crime, which is using Pre-Cognatives to in effect see into the future: you get arrested for what you WILL do.

Nonetheless, despite those problems, "Minority Report" is excellent from direction to scenery to effects. I have no problems with Cruise's style, as some do. The plot was surprisingly compelling with twists and turns. I never squirmed in my seat and the entire 2 1/2 or so hours went by quickly. It was thought-provoking on a number of levels.

I might even see it again. Eight out of ten.
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Manhunter (1986)
9/10
MARVELOUS and STYLISH - Simply Great
22 June 2002
So, Ridley Scott, fresh from the gratuitous and sickening gore of that travesty "Hannibal", is for some reason remaking "Manhunter". Perhaps we can expect more gross-out violence more suitable for an "Itchy and Scratchy" cartoon on "The Simpsons". But there is no reason to remake a near-masterpiece, other than to CASH in on the Hannibal Lecter cachet.

Michael Mann, of "Miami Vice" fame, wrote the screenplay, and directed it in a very stylish and effective manner. The plot and characters were well developed throughout. The acting was superlative, with a luminous Joan Allen standing out as the blind romantic interest - and almost victim - of the crazed serial killer who is an "avid fan" of Hannibal.

Tom Noonan was equally good as the killer; he was fabulously menacing, spooky, and yet affecting in a sad sort of way. The climactic scene shows him finding his humanity with the Allen character - just before William F. Peterson jumps into the scene. Peterson is reprising his role as a crime scene profiler on TV's "CSI". Brian Cox is OK as Dr Lecter, and Dennis Farina fine as the FBI chief.

This movie works on so many levels, and even the music is perfectly suited: Ina Gadda Da Vida by Iron Butterfly was ideal for that climax.

Simply a wonderful movie - in NO need of a remake.
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Windtalkers (2002)
9/10
EXCELLENT - and GORY - Blood and Guts War Film!!
15 June 2002
Intense fighting, and blood and gore, highlight this excellent depiction of one man's personal crisis amidst the chaos of America's invasion of Japanese-held Saipan in 1944. The movie does indeed rock, and Cage is very effective without being over-dramatic.

True it is that the U.S. Marines used Navaho-speaking soldiers to keep secret their messages in the Pacific in World War Two. The Japanese could never decypher them. But it is not true that Marines, such as Nicolas Cage's character, were assigned to not only be bodyguards but to assassinate them in case of imminent capture during combat. That is the premise of the film.

Cage meanwhile is haunted with the horror, and guilt, of having had all his men killed in an earlier battle; besides that, he is plagued with hearing loss and lack of balance from his injuries. Entering the scene is the very upbeat Navaho code-talker played by Adam Beach. Due to his own demons, Cage is unfriendly and standoffish to the newcomer whom he has to guard - and maybe kill.

As the gruesome and gory combat progresses Cage becomes more and more psychologically and physically tortured, although he does show signs of humanity. The Beach character stands up for his Navaho heritage against one prejudiced Marine. It is only after the terrible death of his best friend, the other Navaho code-talker, that Beach finally gets the killer instinct he was so lacking. It might seem a little pat, but is entirely logical. This all results in a final crisis for him and Cage in the last battle of the film.

There are plenty of fights throughout the movie; you do not wait ninety minutes for something to happen like with that bomb "Pearl Harbor". Don't go out for popcorn.

Swedish actor Peter Stormare (Steve Buscemi's crazy partner from "Fargo") plays the Gunnery Sergeant in charge of the platoon; there seemed to be no officers around except to hand out medals. Stormare's accent is a little off, but he's good and intense, and lean and mean.

My biggest complaint about the film is the absurd way Cage can fire a burst from his Thompson sub-machinegun, or several rounds from his .45 pistol, and half a dozen Japs instantly are hit and come tumbling down the nearest hill. Cage never misses; the Japs are terrible shots, and none too good at hand-to-hand combat either. Man, they get bayoneted easy!

But those are minor complaints. Overall, this is one good war film, and in many wats reminiscent of the 1967 Cornell Wilde/Rip Torn film "Beach Red", or the original "Thin Red Line" from 1964, both of which deserve to be rented. Same applies to Buddy Ebsen's "between Heaven and Hell" from 1956, and 1950's "Halls of Montezuma" with Richard Widmark. Fine films all, and all better than the introspective and moody "Thin Red Line" remake.

NINE OUT OF TEN!!
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Crossing Jordan (2001–2007)
STOP THE SOAP OPERA!! STOP BE ANNOYING!!
8 April 2002
This show had a lot of potential. But after months of watching it I am sick of it.

There is far too little actual criminal investigations and far too much about the irritating soap opera personal lives of the increasingly annoying cast.

Jordan is a headcase and an overly made-up little tramp. Her confused boss is in the eye of an entirely screwed-up family with a weird daughter, neurotic insatiable ex-wife, and a criminal father. In the Coroner's office are some of the most unpleasant and irritating people around, the whining Lily is the least bad; the Indian fellow with the unpronounceable name is the worst. The plots revolve around their personal lives, not the crimes. This is nothing like CSI. Too bad.

Get to CRIME DRAMA, and stop the soap opera!!
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Panic Room (2002)
8/10
ENTHRALLING, COMPELLING, AND JUST PLAIN GOOD
31 March 2002
The Safe Room ("Panic Room" sounds better!) cannot be breached by the three home invaders determined to get the millions stashed inside that room. The mother and her diabetic daughter, who just moved into the upscale Manhattan townhouse don't know it is there - and haven't even installed the phone system yet! They are trapped, with time running out and the daughter quickly heading for diabetic shock. The invaders will do whatever it takes to get into the Panic Room, or to find a way to get the frightened pair to come out. Such is the concept of "Panic Room" - and it works very well, although somehow I left thinking it could have been even better considering the cast.

It is reminiscent of home invasion movies from "Wait Until Dark" to "Straw Dogs" - although there is no giant bear trap in this one. The three invaders do try some original stuff with propane gas and switching identities. At one point the situation is reversed with the mother outside with the gun, and the invaders in the Panic Room with her daughter. It all works very well to a claustrophobic, tension-filled effect.

Jodie Foster nicely underplays the mother, and Forest Whitaker reprises his well-known "lovable bad guy" act to effect. Jared Leto is good as the whiny "brains" of the gang, and Dwight Yoakum correctly psychotic as the homicidal sadistic villain. Kristen Stewart is adequate as the generic kid.

One of the more effective aspects of this film is the direction that well uses the architecture of the house; its sterile, scary atmosphere is heightened by the fact that there is almost no furniture or decor, they having just moved in. Very well directed.

A good, entertaining movie. 8 out of 10!
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Resident Evil (2002)
7/10
A HOT MILLA KICKS ASS. An "Escape from the Zombies" blast.
16 March 2002
When "Night of the Living Dead" came out decades ago I kept wondering how long it would take them to figure out to SHOOT THE ZOMBIES IN THE HEAD!! Well, apparently our heroes are still a little slow on the uptake - or never saw that classic! This time the zombies, former technicians and scientists, are underground in a high-tech lab that secretly develops terrifying biochemical weapons of mass destruction.

For those who care about the reasons for why things went crazy down there, suffice it to say there was a plot to steal a virus to prove what a horrible place it is - but one of the conspirators preferred to sell the virus to the highest bidder, while killing everyone else (or at least turning them into the Undead). I think that was the explanation! Regardless, a sort of SWAT team is dispatched to shut down the Artificial Intelligence computer that has taken control of "the hive" - that name for this huge multi-level subterranean laboratory.

The gorgeous Milla Jovovich, never looking better, plays an enigmatic prisoner of the SWAT team suffering from memory loss. It is a really KICK (in more ways than one) to see how she slowly regains her memory - and her martial arts skills.

Milla and the SWAT team descended into the menacing lab. . . and the scene where many of them meet their grizzly, laser-induced doom (Slice and Dice time) is a Classic Movie Moment everyone in the theater found deliciously gory. Only after that do they (the survivors) discover the lab is filled with refugees from "Night of the Living Dead" and a pack of bloody zombie-Dobermans who look as though they've been turned inside-out. Milla deals with them single-handed.

As they make their way out, after "frying" the AI computer and battling the zombies, they discover the traitor in their midst - and a gigantic, mutating monstrosity ("The Licker") with which they have a final heart-pounding battle on a moving underground train. The thing tried some "tongue-action" with Milla to its regret. Those who see it will know what I mean; it was rather droll.

Towards the end, Milla, wrapped in less than when she appeared in "The Fifth Element", faces an Apocalyptic Armageddon scene - the virus not having been contained.

The cast is generically adequate, although Michelle Rodriguez as "Rain Ocampo" clearly ripped-off her tough-talking Hispanic female character on Private Vasquez in the great "Aliens" from 1986.

Special effects are very good; the monster-thing being the highlight. Perhaps after all these movies I've become jaded, but I didn't think it was even all that gory. But that may be just me. There is absolutely nothing thought-provoking about this film, which is OK with me (although that was a failing with "The Time Machine").

Anyway, it's a fun way to kill a few hours - entertaining and exciting. 7 out of 10. And screw the pompous critics who can't see the fun in this film.

Read the credit crawl at the end. Almost every name is German. It was filmed in Berlin.
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Resident Evil (2002)
7/10
A HOT MILLA KICKS ASS. An "Escape from the Zombies" blast.
15 March 2002
When "Night of the Living Dead" came out decades ago I kept wondering how long it would take them to figure out to SHOOT THE ZOMBIES IN THE HEAD!! Well, apparently our heroes are still a little slow on the uptake - or never saw that classic! This time the zombies, former technicians, are underground in a high-tech lab that secretly develops terrifying biochemical weapons of mass destruction.

For those who care about the reasons for why things went crazy down there, suffice it to say there was a plot to steal a virus to prove what a horrible place it is - but one of the conspirators preferred to sell the virus to the highest bidder, while killing everyone else (or at least turning them into the Undead). I think that was the explanation! Regardless, a sort of SWAT team is dispatched to shut down the Artificial Intelligence computer that has taken control of "the hive" - that name for this huge multi-level subterranean laboratory.

The gorgeous Milla Jovovich, never looking better, plays an enigmatic prisoner of the SWAT team suffering from memory loss. It is a really KICK (in more ways than one) to see how she slowly regains her memory - and her martial arts skills.

Milla and the SWAT team descended into the menacing lab. . . and the scene where many of them meet their grizzly, laser-induced doom (Slice and Dice time) is a Classic Movie Moment everyone in the theater found deliciously gory. Only after that do they (the survivors) discover the lab is filled with refugees from "Night of the Living Dead" and a pack of bloody zombie-Dobermans who look as though they've been turned inside-out. Milla deals with them single-handed.

As they make their way out, after "frying" the AI computer and battling the zombies, they discover the traitor in their midst - and a gigantic, mutating monstrosity with which they have a final heart-pounding battle on a moving underground train. The thing tried some "tongue-action" with Milla to its regret. Those who see it will know what I mean; it was rather droll.

Towards the end, Milla, wrapped in less than when she appeared in "The Fifth Element", faces an Apocalyptic Armageddon scene - the virus not having been contained.

The cast is generically adequate, although Michelle Rodriguez as "Rain Ocampo" clearly modeled her tough-talking Hispanic female character on Private Vasquez in the great "Aliens" from 1986.

Special effects are very good; the monster-thing being the highlight. Perhaps after all these movies I've become jaded, but I didn't think it was even all that gory. But that may be just me. There is absolutely nothing thought-provoking about this film, which is OK with me (although that was a failing with "The Time Machine").

Anyway, it's a fun way to kill a few hours - entertaining and exciting. 7 out of 10. I'm a little generous.

Read the credit crawl at the end. Almost every name is German. It was filmed in Berlin.
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5/10
One of the most OVERRATED corny films of the year!
10 March 2002
"A Beautiful Mind" may not be the most overrated film of the year ("The Royal Tenenbaums" is), but it is close - which is not to say it isn't good; it is. But just because Russell Crowe is superb and it is a feel-good cloying tearjerker does not make it great.

You bet it is a tearjerker, and overhyped. The two final syrupy scenes - the presentation of the pens, and the Nobel Prize ceremony - nearly gave me diabetes. The entire movie revolves around two concepts: Modern Psychiatry is brutal and ineffective, and all a disturbed man needs is the love of a good woman. So simplistic and specious.

Nevertheless, it is a good well-made, though manipulative, film taking us into the psychotic world of the famous mathematician. It is loosely based on his life, but conveniently ignores such as his delving into homosexuality which got him arrested and fired from his job. In Left-wing Hollywood I'm surprised they didn't push this abnormality. The performances, especially by Crowe, are first-rate; I being especially impressed by Christopher Plummer.

No way on this planet is "A Beautiful Mind" in the same league as "Lord of the Rings" - which IS truly great. If the former wins the Academy Award it will be due only to internal Hollywood politics, which is why "Shakespeare in Love" beat up the great "Saving Private Ryan"

"A Beautiful Mind". Good. See it for the performances. But I had no trouble thinking of better movies from this past year.
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5/10
Good, but OVERRATED film about a bunch of misfits
10 March 2002
For me, one of the more overrated films of the year, although that does not mean it wasn't good. It was. I just object to the glowing praise some have heaped on this off-beat, eccentric, rather black comedy.

True, Gene Hackman did a remarkably fine job. He usually does. But his role does not, in its length, rise to the level of a Best Actor nomination, and he didn't receive one.

He, as Royal Tenenbaum, is the miscreant paterfamilias of his dysfunctional family; some of his relations have not seen him for many years - and they were quite pleased to have separated themselves from his despised presence.

Royal, down and out, attempts via another ruse to ingratiate himself back into the good graces of the family - a scheme that eventually also fails. But, eventually, he reaches some resolution with his oddball relations, before his final demise.

A "comedy"?? I found some scenes cute and clever, and several I even smiled at. But neither I, nor anyone in the theater, laughed out loud. Generally, the ensemble cast that comprised his family were too freakish, self-indulgent, and unpleasant to be amusing.

A very well put together movie, and I'm sure it will suit the tastes of some. But not me.
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8/10
GOOD REALISTIC WAR FILM. Blame Bill Clinton for this fight.
10 March 2002
When I saw "We Were Soldiers" I immediately compared it to this film. The most obvious difference is that "Black Hawk Down" was more of a straight action film depicting the hell of war, while "We Were Soldiers" made more of an effort to depict the human element - of the Americans, their wives, and even of the Vietnamese. Ridley Scott's purpose in making "Black Hawk Down" was clearly to show the utter chaos of the combat in Mogadishu, and in that he succeeded.

Although we may not know the human beings quite as well as we'd like, the audience can grasp the turmoil into which they were thrown - and that is a vivid though unstated indictment of Americasn leadership, and especially the pusillanimous Clinton administration that left them hanging without adequate backup, armor, or air support, even though these were requested.

Although Bill Clinton, and his then Sec. of Defense, Les Aspin, deserve much of the blame, the commander on the scene, Gen. Garrison, must accept some culpability also. He was depicted as having not bothered to even tell other Allied troops on the scene of the planned incursion into Mogadishu: the U.S. 10th Mountain Division, the Pakistanis, and others. No excuse for that. Clinton later bugged out while scape-goating Les Aspin. It is now revealed Osama Bin Laden was much encouraged by Clinton's cutting and running out of Somalia.

A good, realistic war film. And I give it credit for not opening up the can of worms that would be the politics of it all. Although perhaps an unstated message would be for the U.S. to be far more circumspect in where it goes in efforts to "help" those who neither want nor deserve help.
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COLORFUL and EXCITING. Mesmerizing Moviemaking. GOOD FILM.
10 March 2002
Apparently the presence of English subtitles in this French film has kept it out of the mass American market. I waited a long time for it to come to a nearby theater but it never did - to my surprise. I had to make the effort to seek it out and travel to it. Either the average person is too dumb to appreciate a dubbed film, or the distributors had no confidence in the public's ability to do so. I suppose it could have been dubbed into English, but that is always a poor option.

For those who missed it, that is their misfortune and lose. This is an exciting, colorful, and original movie filled with fabulous martial arts, vivid sets and costumes, creative direction. Yes, it was slightly long, and surely some plot holes could be found, and the denouement of the movie, its conclusion involving a religious cult (the "Brotherhood", even though it includes women), stretched credulity, the movie worked on all counts. I was entertained throughout.

The killer monster, or whatever it was, was slightly odd. Based on plot explanations and its size, it must have been a lion captured in Africa, and then dressed in some sort of spiked armored suit. It was a little too strange-looking for me, but it was adequate. It also didn't appear until well into the film, perhaps too long.

Regardless, I will be getting this on DVD to better appreciate the direction, costumes, scenery, and fights. All in all, it was a lot of fun. Recommended.
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Pleasantville (1998)
10/10
Good, but THE FIFTIES WERE NOT EVIL NOR BAD
10 March 2002
Reminiscent of an old episode of the Twilight Zone, the movie is indeed a charming fairy tale, and creatively done. I liked it a lot, and Joan Allen is wonderful. BUT. . .

THE 1950's WAS NOT THE HORRID PERIOD PEOPLE ARE SUPPOSED TO ASSUME!! Only in PC Left-wing Hollywood would you see the Fifties depicted in such negative terms.

The 1950's had many problems. But it also had some strengths missing from America today: patriotism (at least before 9/11); strong families; a moral center and moral values in the country; a strong respected Military; our national borders were secure instead of being wide open; better public schools; we had trusted political leaders (Eisenhower, etc) instead of dirtbags such as Clinton; and a lot less sleaze out of the "Entertainment" industry on TV and the movies. Among other things.

So, much of the point of "Pleasantville" is lost in a morass of PC baloney. It is TOO BAD we DON'T now have families such as that in "Father Knows Best" or "Leave it to Beaver" instead of the misfits and weirdos on TV. And if they kept sex in the bedroom where it belongs, instead of anytime and anywhere, such as with shows like "Sex in the City" all the better.

Excellent film - but with a very flawed and false message.
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