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Jack Frost (1998)
I admit it, I cried . . .
30 May 2000
Sorry everyone, but I liked this movie. I even cried at the end. My kids freaked when the snowman started to talk and move - one of them got scared by a guy in a teddy bear suit when she was about 3, and she hasn't got over it yet (2 yrs later). They had loved the start of the movie, with the snowball fight and building the first snowman, but as soon as the second snowman came to life we had to turn the video off.

I couldn't believe in Kelly Preston as the mother of an 11-yr-old boy, but in spite of that the casting was great. And Michael Keaton with blond hair is such a hunk . . .

Give it a go!
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An exceptional ensemble performance
20 January 2000
It's true - Kevin Kline will live and die a Pirate King. And he is sooooo sexy! In the closing scene, where he grabs his wife-to-be and starts kissing her . . . quick, where's the cold shower? Rex Smith does a brilliant Elvis impersonation, Angela Lansbury is perfect as Ruth, Linda Ronstadt has the *most* exquisite voice, I could go on and on and on.

Gilbert & Sullivan operettas are never staged "faithfully", and this one remains true to that tradition. All the little bits of business that go on in the background are great fun - in fact it takes quite a lot of viewings to see them all. There are probably still quite a few that I've missed.

I especially love the village hall production of HMS Pinafore being included. That part always cracks me up - the conductor facing up to the pirate king, the audience checking their programmes when the pirates burst onstage, the pianist carrying on playing with a swordfight raging around him. It's WONDERFUL.
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Too many in-jokes
11 January 2000
Overall, this is not a completely bad movie. My kids like it - in fact they watch it more often than the original.

The problem I have with it is like I said - too many in-jokes. I've tried to count the number of other movie references but lost count about half-way through.

Plus - do the people who made this film think only of their US audience? Does it not occur to them that maybe - just maybe - other countries in the world don't screen "Ozzie and Harriet", "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous" and other such junk, and that people might not get the joke? And what on earth are "nutty butties"?

IF the in-jokes had been cut down a bit, I would have enjoyed this movie, in spite of the fact that Jasmine is a lot uglier and Carpet a lot less detailed than in the original, but the sheer number of them just became annoying.

Very disappointing.
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I found it! I found it at last!
6 January 2000
I saw this movie once back in the UK, and I've never forgotten it. The problem was, I didn't have the TV listings mag, and I missed the start, so I didn't know what I was watching (BBC transmission - no commercials). I laughed all the way through this - the story is brilliant. Special moments for me include the unveiling of the lamp, the visit to Santa and the little brother running along to school with his arms at 90 degrees to his body ("Mom - I can't put my arms down!"). According to some other comments, this has become a holiday staple in the US. Unfortunately the same is not true of other countries in the world. Citizens of the world unite - demand annual showings of this movie from your local TV station! You have nothing to lose but yet another screening of some putrid version of "A Christmas Carol".
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Miracles (1986)
A miraculous tale of divorce, love and appendicitis
24 November 1999
I love this movie. Roger (Tom Conti) and Jean (Terri Garr) are a newly-divorced couple who meet again by accident (literally!) and wind up on a truly incredible journey. Christopher Lloyd has a supporting role as a mad pilot.

My favourite parts are the witchdoctor, the plane landing sequence and the jailbreak and its consequences. The only false note is Tom Conti's American accent, but it's easy to overlook as the rest of the movie hangs together so well.

9 out of 10 from me!
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A luscious morsel to savour
25 October 1999
This is a magnificent movie. The cast are superb, I just can't imagine any other actors playing those roles - they've made them their own. I have to admire Miranda Richardson for the lizard scene, too. This movie has everything - sorrow, joy, romance, humour and downright slapstick. Mellersh's bath scene has me in stitches every time.

This one's not just for girls - any man with an ounce of romance in his soul will respond to this story.

And as for the setting - if you've been to Italy, watching this will make you want to go back. If you've never been, it'll make you want to go.

Check it out.
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Scrooged (1988)
A 24-carat chicken (that's bad, but not as bad as a turkey!)
20 October 1999
This is a very annoying film - forgive me for being pedantic, but like a previous reviewer, I hate the fact that they keep talking about "Charles Dickens' 'Scrooge'" - let's face it, if the Muppets can get the title right, then anyone else should be able to.

As a rule, I can watch this one up to about the last half-hour, but when Bill Murray's character goes all sentimental, that's when I hit the off switch. It's so disgustingly hypocritical. Plus, I have nothing against Bill Murray personally, but there are very few characters that he plays that I find either likeable or funny. The patient in "Little Shop of Horrors" - that's funny; Jeff in "Tootsie" - a support role, but brilliantly played; "Groundhog Day" - a well written movie where his character ultimately redeems himself. Come to think of it, that's the theme of Scrooged, but Groundhog Day does it better, without the sentimental posturing.

Scrooged does have its good points. Grace's family scenes, the ghosts, the homeless shelter scene. This could have been a good movie, if the over-the-top schmaltz at the end had just been cut down to size.
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True Stories (1986)
Slow-moving but quirkily wonderful
18 October 1999
I didn't know what to expect when I watched this movie for the first time, and it really took me by surprise. I was already a Talking Heads fan, but it was brilliant to hear most of their songs sung by the characters rather than the band. The highlight for me is Pops Staples singing "Papa Legba". John Goodman is as believable as ever - watch his reaction to the lying woman and tell me you wouldn't do the same! All in all, a slow-moving, intense, quirky delight.
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Give this one a chance - you might just enjoy it.
17 October 1999
This is a movie that I can enjoy watching over and over again, and every time there's something new to notice. It would be a difficult movie to re-make today, morality having changed the way it has, but as a slice of history, it works well. The script is really well-written, with some great one-liners and sharp dialogue, and who can resist Cary Grant? A hot drink, a plate of cookies, and "That Touch of Mink" add up to a very pleasant way to pass an evening.
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Good, escapist fun
13 October 1999
This is a fun movie if you're not looking for heavy philosophy and just want some bubblegum for the eyes. Hume Cronyn and Jessica Tandy are brilliant - he as the husband who's watching his wife's mind deteriorate, she as the "living in the past" wife. My favourite part is when Carlos walks into the hut on top of the building. The expression on his face when he comes out is priceless.
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