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Rags to Riches (1993 Video)
7/10
A little bit of odd music in your life...
6 January 2011
Warning: Spoilers
Yes, it's an "adult film" on the gay side of things.... Being from the 90s, most of the "stars" are shaved, oiled up and glistening... There is some very good physical (sexual) chemistry in the film and the actors are very attractive...

But the oddity is the music... One of the "stars" actually can write music (as well as have incredibly hot sex)... And I'm pretty sure that's really him playing the piano in the film... but that's where the oddity comes into play...

The "plot" starts off with a couple (one is very 90s cute, the other is .. not so much) and taking out the garbage... outside the garage, there's a guy (dressed in the "RAGS" in the title) digging through the trash. Of course, he's buff, tan and very sexy hot - even with his dabs of dirt "make up"... He's digging through the trash because he's a homeless bum (in the Hollywood Hills?)... The homeowner takes pity on him and invites him into the house.

Once in the kitchen, he sets about to make the new guest something to eat. Which is when his boyfriend/husband walks in (the not so cute guy) who gets very put out by this "bum" in the house and makes no queenly bones about it... While the homeowners move to the other room to discuss the "bum" - including warning about how he could be a killer or worse - the bum wanders into another room, where there is a grand piano. Soon, the boys hear the beautiful music.

This leads to our first and second sex scenes - as the homeowners begin to fantasize about hot sex with the bum. They're shocked at the "bum's" talent - with the keys and with their bodies. The "cuter" boyfriend has links in the music world and promises to get the "bum" a break...

Of course, more sexual hijinks ensue, including the cute homeowner inviting a friend over, they peek in on the "bum" taking a shower (where we can see some obvious g-string tan lines) and that leads to the homeowner and the friend getting busy. This leads to a plot twist comes about as the friend of the cute homeowner tells some other guy he's having sex with (and our next scene) about the wonderfully talented "bum".

Then along comes another guy (Zak Spears) who seduces the "bum", has an incredible sexual romp and gets the "bum" to sign an exclusive contract. Of course, the homeowner comes home and sees this, throwing the guy (Zak) out. Zak gloats about having the contract, and the homeowners confront the "bum" - who then says he didn't sign the contract - cut to Zak, opening the contract with ... well ... "screw you" on the signature line...

Besides the plethora of hot nineties bodies, there's not much to push this movie over and above the other gay flotsam of the era - except for the great music composed and played by our hunky bum... It's kind of like when you found out that John Tesh could do more than just report on entertainment news and could actually play music....
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10/10
Jesus Christ, Superstar is a staple...
23 March 2008
First off - let's look at what "Jesus Christ, Superstar" really is - a celluloid version of a Webber/Rice musical extravaganza from the 70s, and is based upon the Gospels of the New Testament and recount the final days of Jesus Christ's life.

As a production of the times (remember, this was made in the early 70s), it is an epic of major proportions... Filmed ENTIRELY in Isreal during the early 70s, at a time of major political unrest, this telling of the story of Jesus Christ is phenomenal.

The casting of relative unknowns brings an "indie film" feel to it. And all of those "unknowns" are fantastic!!! The passion they bring to their roles - the way that the historical/religious figure inhabits their being is incredible. Just look at their expressions and the power in them during many of the scenes, and you'll see what I mean. One example that really sticks in My mind is the Crucifixion scene - when Pontius Pilate is having Jesus flogged 39 times - the expressions that cross Pilate's face, the power in Mary's (Yvonne Elliman) throes of pain and anguish, the frivolity in Herod's face (and then his revulsion to the torture) and Judas' pain and heartfelt sorrow in the end of his own life are incredible. And the look of peace and understanding that often crosses the face of Ted Neely (Jesus) during the film is nothing short of awe-inspiring.

"Jesus Christ, Superstar" takes a major section of the Bible and presents in in a non-preachy point of view and allows us to all learn some of this historically and religiously significant story without clubbing us with preachy tales of God...

A true masterpiece of film-making and music... a staple of My DVD collection and should be a staple in everybody's!!!! Oh, and for TRULY goose-bump inducing moments - look at the final shot - of the sunset... and the appearance of a shepherd....
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10/10
Can I have some wine with this cheese...?!?
23 August 2007
OK... first off - gotta explain the "10" I just gave it.... I picked this flick up at a Wal*Mart from a rack of movies for a buck.... I figures it would be some kind of rip-off cheapo "Mad Max" or "Road Warrior" thing.... boy was I right... and wrong.....

The costumer needs to get special mention - creating those "Star Wars" Stormtroopers meet Kinky Leather Sex Dungeon was just a stroke of genius!!! and with the great hair styles - the mowhawks, super long flowing tresses and more.... Wow..... and the "props master" - creating those fantastic cars from old 60s and 70s cars....

Having said that.... Yes, this movie is nothing more than a big old ball of moldy cheese.... sad little plot, silly little lines, moronic little story.... but for a buck..?!? I just can't complain!!!! Again - this is pure cheese! We're not talking about any kind of award winner - unless it received "Turkey of the Year" or "Major Raspberry" or something.... It's bad, horrifying and.... well super Campy...!
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8/10
Wow.... awesome... made me hungry for....
20 September 2004
.... MORE!

RE:A is a great update and addition to the RESIDENT EVIL group of entertainment options.... The video games all ROCK! The original movie ROCKED.... This one kind of rocks....

The PLUSES:

Meeting Jill Valentine... They did an EXCELLENT job of bringing the character from 'Resident Evil:Nemesis' to the screen.

Meeting Nemesis... Another EXCELLENT interpretation of the vg character to the screen... looks perfect.... I just don't remember weapons.....

Blending Alice into the cast.... also, bringing to life the other cast members from the game series and from the original movie....

The action is TOP NOTCH, with lots of fighting scenes and zombie attacks....

The MINUSES: Alice seems a bit too 'Terminator T-800' for my tastes....

Jill's voice just doesn't seem to match the actress/character....

The filming and/or editing of a lot of the zombie scenes do not allow you to look at the zombies.... it's like the only had budget for about 20 zombie extras and didn't want us to see the lack of makeup on other non-zombie extras being used or they didn't want us to see the same zombies in every crowd....

The filming/editing was a bit TOO dark at times - making some of the action easy to miss....

Special effects - some they spent WAY too much on and others not enough on.

Over all - about a 7 of a movie.... worth it, but not exceptionally as great as the first one!
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Resident Evil (2002)
9/10
EXCELLENT! GREAT!!! KICK BUTT!!! POSSIBLE SPOILERS!!!
20 September 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Resident Evil just flat out kicks butt!

The cast is a group of virtual unknowns... but they all are great actors and actresses, able to fall into their roles with believability....

The action is TOP NOTCH - with lots of fighting and zombie action and running around and everything...

SPOILERS MAY LIE BELOW - BE WARNED!!!

When RED QUEEN, the computer of the Hive, in which Umbrella Corporation creates chemical and medical formulations, realizes that there has been a breech in security and that some of an experimental virus has gotten out, she does what any computer (read: uncaring intelligence) would do - kill any and all beings in the Hive and shut it down, not allowing anything (or anyone) to escape...

Some of the deaths are just simple - using Halon or some other type of chemical, the oxygen is removed from rooms and people die.... or the room is flooded and people drown.... or the elevator drops hundreds of feet and crashes to the bottom of the shaft.... or it moves quickly, snapping the head off anybody stupid enough to poke it out the doors...

Well, there are some drawbacks to the Red Queen's actions.... Including KILLING all of the people that work and live in the Hive.... And, as the deadly T-Virus is on the loose, which is chemically created to re-animate dead tissue, all of those same workers come back to life - with only the most basic of brain functions going - those that will keep them alive - breathing and eating... what do they eat?!? Living creatures....

Through this movie, we get an expansion on the Resident Evil video game series, giving us more back story into the T-Virus and the creatures that inhabit Raccoon City (far above the Hive). We learn a lot about how the virus escaped into the population - although not a lot about how it goes SO big in Raccoon City.

We meet an elite force of security officers of Umbrella Corporation, whose job it is to shut it all down... many die along the way, getting killed by zombies and dogs and brain suckers and the Red Queen's unique security systems... This film is NOT for the feint of heart when it comes to gore - both realized and intimated.....

The end of the movie leaves enough unraveled threads to allow for a sequel (see RESIDENT EVIL:APOCALYPSE - released in 2004) for more.... And enough threads are resolved, giving you closure and allowing the movie to stand well enough on its own....

a 9 out of 10!
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Serial Mom (1994)
9/10
The only cereal I know is Rice Crispies....
8 September 2004
The above is just one of MANY great lines offered up by the cast of 'Serial Mom'.....

The Sutphins seem to be the picture of a normal 50's-esque family - dad (Sam Waterston) is a dentist; mom (a FANTASTIC Kathleen Turner) is a grand house wife homage to Donna Reed, June Cleaver and such; daughter (Rikki Lake) and son (Matthey Lillard) seem to be your average teens with a perfect family life.... Or is it?

Based upon actual real life events, John Waters manages to bring us another great film - and this time - he takes dead aim on the 'celebrity' we make of murderers and criminals....

I'm sure that many of us have gone through our lives, being annoyed by this person or that object and we've never done anything about it.... Not Betty Sutphin.... When this suburban mom goes off - she goes off.... From minor annoyances (white shoes after labor day!) to major anger management issues, Betty takes matters into her own hands - by going on a killing spree - taking 6 victims to an early grave....

Sure, in typical Waters way, it's a bit over the top and corny, but the film is great! Some of the humor is very low brow - in bad taste, but, as Waters mentions in interviews - bad taste can be good taste!

I gave this a 9 - a greatly enjoyable film!
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Hidalgo (2004)
9/10
Wow.... Beautiful animal... and the horse is gorgeous, too!
7 September 2004
I saw this movie over the weekend, on DVD...

What can I say - it was BEAUTIFUL.... The animals are gorgeous - from the titular horse and the Arabian stallions to Viggo Mortensen and some of the 2 legged Arabian stallions....

Sure, the movie has a load of technical and continuity errors - see that link for more... But the story behind it (based upon truth) is beautiful - showing that just one man CAN make a difference.....

The scenery as Hidalgo and 'Cowboy' race across the desert is beautiful - as well as bleak - from the mountains and plains to the beach. If you are an animal lover, you will be in tears during some scenes and cheering and shouting during others...

But, another thing to look at during this movie is to pick up on the underlying subtexts... There are morals about racism, elitist attitudes and the concept that an underdog can't win. There is beauty involved when each of these morals is brought to the surface, but never in a 'smack-you-upside-the-head' sort of way....

Watch the movie for its beautiful animals and its beautiful juxtaposition of thoughts against actions.

9 out of 10 stars!
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I Put a Spell on you..... * * * possible spoilers * * *
7 September 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Granted, this isn't the best movie on the face of the planet.... Not earth shaking or life changing in any sense.... But, it's a decent romantic-comedy-drama with some great performances and some fantastic lines....

Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman portray sisters - WITCH sisters - from a small town in Massachusetts.... Very early on, a family curse takes their father from them, with only their mother to care for them. The mother disappears - never fully explained in the film - and the sisters go to live with their 2 old aunts - also witches - portrayed by Stockard Channing and Diane Weist - 2 of my favorites in supporting roles! Frannie (Channing) looks great with long hair and her expressions are priceless. Bridget (Weist) fills the role completely, offering her expressions and timely delivery to the tale.

The 2 girls grow up in the magical household, learning magic as portrayed today by many Wiccans - by using some natural abilities with other natural ingredients, as well as some chants and incantations - to affect their lives.... They learn of the family curse - that any man that the family women love will die unexpectedly. The young Sally (Bullock) casts a love spell, asking for a true love SO unique that he could NEVER exist - with qualities that are rare at best. Gillian (Kidman) wants to revel in love, and goes from man to man to man, leaving them before they can love her or after they've loved her to death, as it were....

The girls grow up into women, and Sally falls in love with a local man - a grocer - and tries to have a normal life - raising 2 girls along the way. Her husband dies tragically and she takes her daughters to live with the 2 old aunts. Now the true fun begins for the family....

The story line can seem a bit slow at times, and the comedy is scarce, but the movie goes along at a good pace... One of my favorite scenes is the 'Midnight Margaritas' - something you have to see to believe....

Channing and Weist are great as the 2 old auntie witches and Bullock & Kidman make a great pair on screen, as well..

I give it an 8 out of 10....
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7/10
...and so was this movie....
1 September 2004
It's cute.... it's bouncy.... it's fluff.... but it's mindless entertainment for a few hours.... See it!

Plus side:

Geena Davis is perfect as the quirky female lead.... Just enough of a ditz to be believable.... and yet strong enough, too...

Jeff Goldblum - well, he's kind of typical in this role... Like W. Shatner, Jeff has a particular way of speaking.... and this film shows it... But his acting was good and he was semi believable as a lovable alien... And, he was kind of hunky in that scene....

Jim Carrey & Damon Wayons - these 2 guys are 90% funny 90% of the time... they were classic on 'IN LIVING COLOR' and both have gone on to have decent careers in the years since.... The woodie on the freeway is hilarious!

Julie Brown - no other big-boobed-blonde could have EVER pulled this off! And, her songs from the film - 'Cuz I'm a Blonde, I Like 'em Big and Stupid - are just the best ... I don't have to work I just have to jiggle.....

While the story line may be cheesey and seem like a leftover that sat a bit too long, it's cute fluff and worth a view...
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Demolition University (1997 Video)
3/10
2 words - CHEESE BALL
31 August 2004
I caught this thing on TV the other night... Some cable channel while I was channel surfing.... it kind of caught my eye.... but then it turned my stomach.... Talk about bad.... and that's not the 'good' kind of bad (like M Jackson used to say "I'm Bad!")....

Starts off with a decent premise of a story - kids going on a school science outing get involved in a terrorist plot against the US and against their fair city.... Kids find way to thwart plan with some minor outside help.

The film even offers a bit of eye candy, with hunky actors and sexy actresses in some of the roles....

However, those are the ONLY good points to this piece of ... bad cheese....

Where they could have REALLY gone someplace with this stinker, they didn't.... Too many technical and continuity issues abound....

one of the most glaring is that these are all supposed to be COLLEGE/UNIVERSITY level students in a PHYSICS class... So, why do they all act like a bunch of high school sophomores? Why are the 2 male leads more interested in dating the female lead at a DANCE?!? Hell, when I was in college - our dances were far less a social event then they were just a gathering of dance kids.... Plus, if this was a junior college (which is what it seems like), there wouldn't really be some organized dance/social event like that.... And, if it was a normal private or state university, there'd be a lot more of the frat/sorority type of life....

The dialog was just horrible and cheesy and cheap... needs a LOT of work... and the acting?!? C'mon! I've seen better acting and cared more about the characters in a PORN, fer cryin' out loud!

As for continuity errors - they abound - with the first (or many) being the supposedly 'secure' water plant/reservoir that the baddies are taking control of.... First off, I doubt that the plant would be smack dab in the middle of a commercial zone like it appears to be.... watch the scene when the school bus shows up.... it looks like any typical commercial zone in just about any decent sized city....

And, is it a reservoir of a city's water supply? or a power plant? It seems to change between one and the other....

Additionally, why would a college have a bright yellow school bus? Um.... most college kids drive, so they'd probably set up some kind of car pool or something where everybody meets at the location.... And, even if they WERE going to have an organized trip like this, I don't know of a single college that uses they typical yellow school bus.... They'd charter one locally....

Then, there is the fact that the security gate the seems to 'move' from one scene to the next.... when the baddies first show up and kill a guard, they pull straight forward in their motor home (which was a rental unit!) and park and then get out to take over the facility.... But, when the school kids arrive, they pull up towards the motor home - from supposedly the same security gate - and we're looking at the SIDE of the motor home, instead of the back....

Oh, and or course, the ONE and ONLY door that everybody comes and goes from is some metal door with a simple push button combo lock on it.... and it just ISN'T locked any time during the film!

Also, most reservoirs that I've ever seen or been to are located OUTSIDE of the metropolitan area of the city... Mind you, I'm not talking about the rain 'catch basins' that you can see in many cities, but the BIG RESERVOIR that supposedly supplies the ENTIRE CITY'S drinking water... And, they're not USUALLY underground in a tank!

Then, when one of the baddies - the semi leader - shoots one of the water plant's employees in the head from 6 inches away, the employee is being held by another of the bad guys... who miraculously does NOT get hit by any stray bullets or FRAGMENTS OF THE GUY'S SKULL, BRAINS or BLOOD! And, for dramatic effect, they show the guy's hardhat - with just a touch of red blood here and there.... Wow.... Talk about a CLEAN kill!!!!

I could go on and on and on and on and on and... but this isn't worth anymore space...

AVOID THIS TURKEY UNLESS YOU LIKE BORING AND STUPID MOVIES!!!!
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I, Robot (2004)
8/10
I, Robot.... aye yi yi yi yi!
25 August 2004
OK... it wasn't the greatest movie ever made....

But it is FAR from being the worst....

Typical Will Smith character - he's a cop that has a chip on shoulder (robots)... He gets called in to investigate a crime involving what caused the chip on his shoulder (a robot involved in a death).... cop ends up getting involved in a big back story about domination and foils the evil doer's plans... cop gains understanding about (robots) that caused the chip on his shoulder and softens his view of robots. the end.

The movie has great special effects - lots of cgi and digital images... great use of existing city features... liked seeing the older Chicago landmarks (Sears Tower) juxtaposed over the newer buildings....

The movie has great action - lots of running and jumping and typical Will Smith cop movements.... great chase scenes and such.... Very intriguing plot line and story.... keeps your interest throughout....

Great cast.... Will Smith shines - even though he's been this role many times before... he worked HARD on his body for this role - and, DAMN! does it show! Will looks GOOD! Additional characters - both human and non-human - are great....

I give it an 8.... now, if the rumor is true that they had to 'un-enhance' Will's shower scene... Hmmmm....
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Caligula (1979)
7/10
Err.... Isn't it caligUla?!? But OK, all the same...
25 August 2004
For years and years I'd heard about this film - and how horrible it was.... how great it was.... how nasty & perverse it was... how tame it was....

So, I finally bought it (on ebay) in the unrated version....

Well, the acting is actually very good.... Much of the cast is well known - Helen Mirrin, Malcolm McDowell, Peter O'Toole and I'm sure that there are others.... Some of the cast is only moderately known - only from their layouts and spreads in Penthouse magazine.

Some have painted this movie as being gratuitous in the use of sex and violence and gore... NOT! It is a fairly accurate depiction of what the Roman empire is reported to have been like in written history....

Was some of the nudity and hard core sex (seen in the unrated version) over the top? Not really.... Did it add to the story? Not really.... Did it detract from the story? Not really.... it was all good depictions of what that time and area was like...

Malcolm McDowell puts in a smashing turn as the titular Caligula Caesar... being able to show you his insanity and how unstable he is reported as being.... he slips with ease from anger to insanity to clarity to depravity to whatever emotion is required of him...

If you are NOT into seeing numerous naked men and women engaging in some luke-warm to steaming hot scenes - including major hard core sexual intercourse and the so-called 'money shots' that this film has - rent/borrow/view the rated version.... it will be a little cleaner and less offensive.... if those types of scenes do not bother you or you enjoy seeing those hard core sex scenes - go for the unrated version...

The movie is good, the characters are spot on and the eye candy - male and female is hot, hot, HOT! Some of these men and women are straight (and maybe not so straight!) out of porn - or should have followed up on a career in the skin flicks..... One man is memorable in the size and capacity of his member and what he could do with it - he'd have made a fortune in porn - gay or straight....

In all - about a 7 out of 10...
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The Village (2004)
9/10
Hmmm... didja miss the point?!?
16 August 2004
Warning: Spoilers
OK... we've all read some of these comments for the latest of M. Night Shyamalan's films.... Seems that people either love it or loathe it... Many offer up reasons that we should do either option - leaving no middle ground....

My advice? Drop all expectations and notions at the door. Go into this movie without all the hype or hatred this film has garnered.

As for many comments posted around:

* * * POSSIBLE SPOILERS INVOLVED * * *

So what if the plot twist was easy to see for some.... I knew it in 20 minutes and found a few supporting items along the way.... the doctor's glasses, a line of dialogue about a sister being raped and murdered in an alley 3 blocks from home, certain other aspects of the dialogue...... Just go in like an innocent child and decide for yourself.

M. Night may very well be attempting to be the next Hitchcock, and he's got a lot of his characteristics down - making suspense thrillers, appearing in small cameos, etc.... He is NOT trying to make horror films, any more than Hitchcock was... they're into the suspense... letting the plot and the actions 'scare' you... Expecting a horror monster movie - go see 'AvP'.

As for the dialogue sounding 'flat' to some - remember, this is a 20th/21st century 'scholar' (he's a teacher, remember?) and his concept of what the language would be.... And, recall, that many of these people were 20th/21st century people.... So, they can only ASSUME what the verbage and words would be....

To the ones that bring out about how everything looks fresh and new and yet you assume that the 'Village' has been around for at least a generation... Get real! Given the 'twist', and how most of the items are only about 30 years old, it makes perfect sense that the items would not be threadbare and ruined.... And, if you need proof of the timeline, look again at the picture of the 'elders' outside the counseling center... That is a decidedly mid/late 70's Ford in the foreground.... I'm a car buff, so I knew THAT one right away.... Also, given the potential money that the Walker family had, it is completely plausible to have many of these items made and in as-new condition. But, again, if you were paying attention to the details, you'd have caught it... One look at the glass of the buildings and the plates in the opening feast scene show you that they're made with modern technologies and NOT from the late 1800s.... So, you either chalk them up to 'continuity errors' or you think about them.... See above for other examples (doctor's glasses, for example....)

This movie was made to make you THINK. It was NOT meant to be a late summer BLOCKBUSTER of a film.... That's not what M. Night is all about.... He's far more subtle than that....

MY OPINION - and it is just that MY opinion:

The movie is very good.... it has a slow point or two, but enough suspense to keep the audience engrossed... Yeah, there are a few plot issues (holes?) that can seem jarring, but many CAN be explained by the twist. Not M. Night's BEST film, but not his worst, either.... And he's got a lot of years left ahead of him....

One final thing to ponder - the 'sounds' of the creatures in the woods.... Do you think that they could the the sounds of the sirens from the ranger trucks or from some trains passing in the distance? I grew up in the Pennsylvania farmlands outside of Philly... And a train that is 10 - 20 miles away could sound very much the same....
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Showgirls (1995)
7/10
2 Words - CAMP CLASSIC
16 August 2004
Yeah, so OK... in the great history of film, "Showgirls" will appear WAY down at the bottom of the list.... Worst ever made? Nah... But close!

However, go back and view the movie again - but with no expectation and no ill harbored thoughts or feelings...

It is f--king hilarious! I caught it the other night on Showtime (or HBO) and laughed my butt off!!

I think that Ezterhuas (?) and VerHoven (?) had nothing more in mind than to create a T&A movie to glorify the jiggly-wiggly bits of flesh on a woman's body.... That's the funniest part about this whole damn thing! That everybody was expecting some great film, when, in fact, all this is, is just a 2+ hour T&A exploitation flick....

The PLUSES -

Gina Gershon - she is (was?) an absolutely STUNNING creature in the mid 90s.... and, her character has some of the greatest lines in the film ('You are a whore, darlin').... And she TRULY delivered these lines in the way that they probably had been planned - in total campy straightness....

Great sights and scenes of Vegas - including some rarely seen aspects of the town... I lived there for 5 years (and was actually at The Forum Shoppes at Caesars the night they filmed the Spago scenes - but my store was cut out of the background images =^(.....) Sure, there were some continuity errors - like when they're walking out of the Stardust (where 'Godess' was being performed) and they're in the back areas of Caesars Palace & The Forum Shoppes.... Or, when Nomi walks out of the city jail and is miraculously in the neighborhood behind the 'Stratoshpere' Hotel & Tower (formerly known as Vegas World).... Anyone that lived in Vegas knows this to be one of the highest crime areas in the city....

A host of other 'notable' actors and actresses in character/supporting roles....

And a GREAT showing of the back stabbing antics that go on behind the scenes of ANY popular show.... The marbles on the stage were FANTASTIC!...

THE MINUSES:

Elizabeth Berkely.... Girl, you should have left off with 'Saved by the Bell'.... This was NOT a good film for you..... Way too much make up.... and you're just not all that convincing as a back stabbing bitch... And, well, frankly, your body just ain't that of a stripper.... especially not at Cheetahs, for cryin-out-loud! Maybe some downtown/east side sleaze joint.... But Cheetahs? Never!

And speaking of shows - 'Godess' was far more revealing than ANY topless showroom production.... the only thing that is even close is the NEW Zoomanity at the New York, New York....

A host of other 'notable' actors and actresses in character/supporting roles.... Yeah, I know.... I'm repeating myself... And there's more!

And showing of the back stabbing antics that go on behind the scenes of ANY popular show.... The marbles on the stage were over the top! Besides, ANY show would work VERY HARD to clearing the hurt dancers off the stage PRONTO and drawing your attention away from them SUPER QUICK if something like that happened....

Again, let me just say that this is a campily funny movie with great lines and is a decent time capsule of the early 90s climbing that was happening ALL over the place....

So, darlin', pop some Wolfgang Puck's food in the oven, open a bottle of Crystal (or Andre, if that's all you can afford) and see the 'Godess' again!
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6/10
Not as good as the 1st but not as bad as some say!
9 July 2004
OK.... So it's not a great 2nd edition of the potential franchise.... But it is NOT as bad as some people want you to believe it to be, either! If this had been the first film, I think that many would have thought it was much better, but, when you weigh it against the original 'Scooby Doo' movie, it pales....

We still have the cast of "Mysteries Inc" running around in the Mystery Machine van - with Scooby Doo (created in CGI), Fred (Freddie Prinze Jr.), Shaggy (Matthew Lillard), Velma (Linda Cardinelli) and Daphne (Sarah Michelle Gellar). This time, they're joined by some old favorites: Seth Green (as a love interest for Velma), Peter Boyle (as the classic 'Old Man Wickles'), Alicia Silverstone (as a great foil for Daphne), 'Inside Edition' host Pat O'Brien shows up and even 'American Idol' alum Ruben Studdard gets a turn to show us his acting chops.

The story line revolves around a reappearance of some of Mystery Inc.'s old school monsters coming back around in town. Alicia Silverstone plays a hard charging, up and coming news caster, trying to get the next big story - and she doesn't care who she crushes in her way up. Seth Green shows up as a curator of a museum to the greatness of Mystery Inc., and cares for all of the monsters that they've caught. It's HIS museum that gets robbed and the monsters come back to life!

The CGI here is just as good as the first time - but there seems to be a bit more of it.... Sure, the story isn't as flashy as the first one, but it's still pretty good on its own merits. There's a lot of flash and sizzle to this film, but it's more like a diet version of the first... still not bad, but sometimes leaving you wanting for just another bite!
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10/10
The classic DRAMEDY with Excellent Southern Style!
9 July 2004
This movie is one of my ALL TIME FAVORITES, and will always have a spot in my personal movie collections.... With an all-star ensemble cast, witty dialogue and a drama-driven, comedic story line, 'Steel Magnolias' is a classic that will make you laugh and cry - and sometimes make you laugh UNTIL you cry!

The story line revolves around a Louisiana family - The Eatentons - played by Sally Field (as M'Lynn - the mom), Julia Roberts (Shelby - the daughter), Tom Skerrit (Drum - the father) and Tommy & Jonathon - the younger brothers. The time frame starts off as we see the family getting ready for Shelby's pending nuptials to Jackson Latcherie (a then, somewhat unknown Dylan McDermott).... All of the drama of a big family is impacted by the marriage and getting ready for it. Of course, there is the typical drama between the bride and her mom - with M'Lynn wanting a picture perfect wedding - HER way - while Shelby is looking for her own signature touches - such as it is.

Of course, given that there are all the lives that touch the Eatenton's - such as Ouiser (Shirley MacLaine), Clairee Belcher (Olympia Dukakis), and Truvy (Dolly Parton). Truvy runs a local beauty parlor out of her home.... Anelle (Darryl Hannah - looking as un-pretty as possible!) is a new comer to town, having been brought to the area by her drifter (and drug dealing husband!) and needing to find a job... So, Anelle comes to "Truvy's Beauty Spot" for a job and gets involved in the drama... Truvy also gets into 'discussions' with her husband, Spud (Sam Shepard). He's an under-employed construction worker, trying to help make ends meet.

No spoilers here, as there are so many little story line points that pop up from time to time between the characters and with their histories. Shelby is a diabetic, with all that goes along with it. Ouiser is one of the richest women in town, and is currently single - leading to all sorts of interesting liaisons. Clairee is the 'former first lady' of the Parrish, having been married to a former civic leader, until his death a few years previously. Ouiser and Clairee are best pals - with all of the friendship and rivalry that goes along with that.... In many ways, they come off more like siblings...

The cast works exceptionally well together. The lines and dialogue are witty and biting, and there are many times that you will have to stop and go back a scene to catch them! Many times, when the women are all together, the lines and barbs fly! Listening to them banter back and forth is classic - reminding one of their own family and friends.

So, get some friends together, gather up some snacks and drinks and plop down on the sofa to watch this classic dramedy! You won't soon regret it! And, don't be surprised if you and your pals start popping off lines from the movie..... "...ya know I loves ya more 'n my luggage!"
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5/10
Eyes Wide Shut.... Well, more like Eyes Wide Off....
7 July 2004
I know that this was Mr. Kubrick's last great film.... However, I just don't think it was that great.... Making Mr. and (the then) Mrs. Tom Cruise as the leads just didn't make it seem that much better, either.... Don't get me wrong, both Tom and Nicole are good performers in their own right, but this movie just doesn't seem to do much with either of them.... Their on screen chemistry seems lost in this epic.... Seemingly off from their chemistry in 'Days of Thunder'....

Tom's role as Dr. Bill just comes across as extremely wooden - not up to his usual caliber... It's almost as off as some of his scenes from 'Risky Business'.... About his only lively moments are against the gay seeming hotel desk clerk (played by out actor, Alan Cumming) and the scene with the hooker's room mate - delivering the box of pastries.... Actually, that scene again brings to mind the Joel Goodson character of 'Risky Business'.

Nicole does well in her role as Mrs. Dr. Bill, but again, just seems a bit... off.... Her take as Virginia Woolf in 'The Hours' was top notch, and she did well in 'Moulin Rouge'.... And, as the ghost that's not a ghost in 'The Others', she was so much better... But in this she just seems .. off....

I've seen both of them do SO much better in the past....

About the only aspect of the film that really works so well, is the soundtrack.... The simplistic piano tappings - raising and lowering in tone and in tempo add certain intrigues to the scenes in which they're used... although sometimes horribly over used....

The scene's at the mansion sex party are surreal - to say the least... very dramatic and intriguing.... the costumes are excellent, with gorgeously crafted masks donning so many extras..... And the scenes with Mr. Milich (?) - at the costume shop - alternate between humorous and horrifying....

And, yes, I know that Mr. Kubrick was a brilliant man - phenomenal in many other ways.... However, I just found this movie slow and not really all that great. I gave it a 5 out of 10 - not bad but not great, either... This whole film just seems off.....
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9/10
Different for Girls... AND boys!!
6 July 2004
OK... this is a very good movie, overall.... Typical of English Indies, it has a great story and a very good premise... I won't rehash the plot and storyline points too much, as they've been covered in the other posts and the plot summary.

Kim (former Carl) plays his/her role very convincingly - having a good balance between living 'out' in the world and being very 'in' to herself.... Kim lives her 'new' life as a woman very quietly and nearly invisible. Paul Prentice, runs into Kim quite by accident - running his motorbike into the side of a cab that Kim is riding in. After nearly 15 years since they had last seen each other in an all boy boarding school.

The differences in their lives is brought forward in the story - with Paul having held numerous jobs in his life, hopping from one self created emergency into another.... From job to job, relationship to relationship... Never seeming to grow up.... Kim, however, has made large advances since boy's school - including having gone through some serious internal changes - coming from thinking he's gay into full realization that he's a she in a he body.... As Kim, he spends many years in the 'pre-op' phase, learning what it takes to be a woman. Once he goes under the knife (which she somewhat explains the procedure at the end of the movie), and comes out as 'post-op' Kim.

The storyline plays well, without pandering to horribly gay or transgendered stereotypes, and shows most of the characters as being well rounded individuals. Kim goes through another growing phase in her personal life, gaining new confidence - enough so to go on the record at Paul's trial, as being a m2f trans...

If I have only 1 complaint about the entire movie, it's that Steven Mackintosh does not make a convincing Kim - he's a bit too manly - with a more masculine build... It may have been more convincing to actually have a transgendered person playing the role.... or possibly a more feminine appearing actor. Rupert Graves as Paul is great! He's got just enough of a 'cover boy' model look to provide some steam and sex appeal, but also has just enough dorkiness about him to come across as the goofy roustabout that has never grown up....

Overall - 9 outta 10...
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9/10
A Good Time
21 June 2004
Yeah, so what! You didn't like it and I did. That's what life is all about, people - differences!

I went and saw 'Stepford Wives' with my boyfriend, my dominatrix pal and her grand-daughter. Well, the 3 adults thoroughly enjoyed it and laughed our collective butts off! Why? Well:

1 - The casting if PHENOMENAL! Kidman, Broderick, Hill, Midler, Lovitz, Walken and (especially!) Close are perfectly suited for their characters! Kidman's character is decidedly over-the-top and could not have been played better.... Sure, she's witchy (but with a B) in the beginning and you can't stand her, but she grows on you - much like moss. Broderick plays a perfect dweeb, in love with a girl 2 notches above his own standing in life. What you see of Hill is minute, but somewhat worth it. I truly believe she needed more of a role, but.... maybe in the DVD release & deleted scenes? Lovitz is great as his own dweebish and goof ball self, and Midler does a stand up job as the perfect 'self help' author - trying to tell everybody else how to live their lives, all the while having a perfectly f---ed up life at home. And Walken and Close as the leaders of this little community are fantastic! Especially at the end!

2 - The take on today is quite truthful! There are WAY too many people tied up in their high power careers and they don't see their own lives falling apart around them. Case in point - Broderick shows Kidman a picture drawn by one of their kids - the child is SHOOTING a gun at mommy! There are WAY too many cases of kids going wrong because mommy OR daddy (and more often, BOTH!) not being able to give enough to their kids.

3 - There are a TON of funny lines and sight gags in this movie. But, humor is all based upon perception.... what I find funny, you just don't get and vice-versa.... Some people go off on seeing a guy get a ball in his balls on 'America's Funniest Videos' but I just don't get it....

Finally, don't let ANYBODY'S opinion turn you off from seeing this movie or make you go see it. Use your own best judgment. If you like it (as I did), tell people! If you didn't, well, same thing, TELL people. Personally, I can't WAIT for the DVD - just hoping that they show deleted scenes, bloopers and all those kinds of great extras!!

ENJOY!!!
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Attack of the 50 Ft. Woman (1993 TV Movie)
7/10
Hall hath no fury like a woman grown....
19 April 2004
OK, so it's a cheesy remake of a camp classic.... But it is all good, harmless fun....

Darryl Hannah stars as the titular character - a wealthy heiress who grows to 50 foot tall after she gets angry. After a freak encounter with aliens, she grows to an enormous size after an argument with her husband (Daniel Baldwin) and her father. It's a perfect remake of the 50's classic, updated to match the current 90's time frame - with big business and big bucks hanging in the balance.

Some argue that another actress could have been cast as the lead, but Darryl was at the height of her popularity during the early 90s and is perfect in this role. Others argue that this b-rated made-for-cable release was a case of her slumming in her career. Either way, this stands as a cheesy remake of the camp b-movie classic...

A definite afternoon cheezer pleaser...
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Worth some looks - they're married crooks!
25 March 2004
Yes, so Bonny and Clyde, they ain't! But it was never meant to be that.... And, if you never really were around during the late 70's, you won't get the concept either....

Sure, we've all read and re-read the plot concept - upper middle income bracket Dick (George Segal) loses his job - just at the time with he and his wife Jane (Jane Fonda) are playing 'keep up with the Joneses' - by buying and buying and buying everything that his salary will afford: there's the new home (typical of ANYTHING in Orange County at the time), the cars, the household furnishings and electronic gadgets, and, oh, yes, let's not forget the LAWN! One of the things that you have to remember is back then, when you bought a new house - it was just that - the house. No landscaping, no pre-made pools and backyard paradises - nothing. Just a house and dirt...

Anyway, so Dick loses his job and they are in fear of the possibility of losing their life.... They try all the normal and legal ways of getting by - welfare, food stamps, loans, and on and no - and nothing works out.... They turn to a life of crime when they see how easy it can be done... and they become quite successful at it (watch the end credits as their cars multiply!)...

So, it's not a hilarious movie! Big deal! It's got enough funny moments and quick one liners to work.... It's main comical focus, though, is poking fun at the establishment of the times: how big business (aerospace, at the time) uses up it's people and then just drops them when times go soft, big religion (stealing the money from the televangelists!!!), the inadequacy of government, and on and on... Don't look at the film from a 2004 (or 03, 02 01, Y2k) perspective... Think back to the days of disco and the boom of the late 70s... You'll have a laugh and a half...

Oh, and if the movie was SO bad? Why is Jim Carrey mounting a new version with himself and Cameron Diaz as the leads? So, it must have been at least SOMEWHAT humorous to warrant a recreation!

A 4 **** out of 5.
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8/10
Disney's take on 'Treasure Island' - and not a bad take, either...
29 January 2004
'Treasure Planet' is another of many solid Disney animations. We all know the story of 'Treasure Island' and it is only slightly modified for it's futuristic, outer space setting. The characters are all fully realized and you can care about them, much as you would for a live actor version of the story. The voices fit the characters and they 'act' with feeling and care.

Overall, this is a solid B+ or A- film and a pleasant way to spend a few hours - even if it's only on DVD and video.... A great choice!
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7/10
'Clueless' meets 'Bonnie and Clyde'...
29 January 2004
... or should it be 'Thelma and Lewis'?!?

Basically this movie is mindless fun - something that may have you chuckling once or twice and rolling your eyes a few times, as well.... Nobody is on their best behavior in this light and slightly campy film. You've all read the plot summary - Rich brat kidnaps herself but gets more than she bargained for when her car is stolen from the garage and romance ensues.

The cast is very good in all their places.... Silverstone plays a spoiled rich brat that wants desperately - DESPERATELY - for her father's love and attention. But daddy is too busy with his business life and dealings - some of which are not on the most 'up and up'... While he's no Mafia Don, it's hinted that he's not the cleanest business man in the world.... Walken is daddy's 'enforcer', who seems to help in some of the shadier deals that daddy makes. But, Walken has a decent relationship with Silverstone, and seems to be more fatherly in his relations with her...

Del Toro plays a high end car thief who steals beautiful machines on order.... You want a Ferarri? OK, we'll get you a Ferarri...! Del Toro is a bit annoying with his slow dialect and dumb founded look. Harry Connick Jr. plays Del Toro's 'agent' in the car rip off ring. He does a great job in this role, that I think is one of his first.

Overall, the movie is fun.... sure, it's not the greatest comedy (romantic or otherwise) on the face of the planet, but it's decent fare - a decent way to burn a few hours.... If you're a Sliverstone fan, you'll probably like this one.... If you're a Del Toro fan - well, he's just himself - with a bad speech pattern. Walken is his typical bad guy self, and shines.

Overall, I'd give it a B....
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Juwanna Mann (2002)
3/10
A bit predictable and then some....
28 January 2004
OK.... so it's a cute movie... It's more than just predictable and some of the jokes are expected. Over all, it has some funny moments and some cute parts... Having former cast members of "Mad TV", "In Living Color" and other funny shows works.... Vivica Fox plays the love vixen very well, but she's shown as being too dumb and too blind to the antics of her man - Romeo.

The move was very well cast and plays very well.... I just wonder if everybody really is THAT stupid to realize that he's a she.... He's just a bit obvious - but he plays it well and Juwanna's accent is convincing. I just wonder how his wig stays on so well.
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Dragon Fighter (2003 Video)
4/10
Fondue.... Take one part cheese (the movie) and one part fire....
24 January 2004
OK.... I just have 3 words - cheesy, cheesy and CHEESY! The only redeeming feature of this movie is Dean Cain. Other than that - it's CHEESEBALL SUPREME!!!!

The movie DOES have some promise in the concept - an underground lab creates a real live fire breathing dragon - basically giving us more of "Jurassic Park" meets "Reign of Fire"..... There are some great possibilities, but they just don't follow through.... The special effects are decent - even though you KNOW the dragon is CGI, it doesn't horribly LOOK like CGI....

I wouldn't lay the blame on Dean Cain (although he IS one of the producers), I'd lay more of the blame on Phillip Roth - the director and writer. It's HIS job to make this film.... and, unfortunately, he failed.
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