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Brüno (2009)
2/10
A misguided romp
11 July 2009
Sacha Baron Cohen is back with another outrageous turn, this time as disgraced fashion reporter Brüno. Similarly to Borat, he looks to America (via the Middle East and Africa) for the answer to his problems, this time in the hope of finding fame and re-invigorating his career. But this time are we laughing with him, or at him?

I really wanted to like this film, and I'm as open-minded and up for a laugh as they come. I'm also a gay man, so perhaps I was anticipating this film just a bit more than the next Joe in the street. I also had a pretty good idea of what I was in for, having seen and largely enjoyed Borat. Not to mention that Cohen is pretty much a genius, someone who lives and breathes his creations, no matter how extreme or dangerous the situation in which he finds himself becomes.

The outrageous jokes are there, as are the stunts. But it's arguable as to what is actually authentic and what has been set up with willing participants (refer to Cohen's MTV stunt with Eminem), and this does take away from the film. I found myself laughing out loud with the audience at a number of these, and just like in Borat, some where I could barely keep my eyes open as I was cringing in my seat with embarrassment for both him and his unwitting victims.

But at the end of the film I was left with a sour taste in my mouth. Whereas I feel the humour in Borat came from exposing everyday peoples' prejudices, he also had an ounce of likability as the naive hillbilly who was out of his depth. Brüno is a different beast altogether - largely unlikeable - and he goes out of his way to provoke reactions in people you might actually have some sympathy for, and also reactions that become downright scary and predictable. That's when the humour disappears and Brüno veers from biting social commentary to mindless provocation 'for laughs'. I'm just not sure anyone was really laughing...
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3/10
Dismally tame second outing
2 November 2007
OK - honestly, why do we watch these films? It's not for the story lines or the wonderful acting. We want blood, guts, gore, and plenty of it. Thrills and spills, scenes that make us cringe and groan out loud, and yeah, have fun while doing it.

Hostel 2 has very little of any of that. I would say about 95% of it focuses on the exploits of a trio of girls vacationing in Europe, having fun in art class, chilling out in a spa and folk dancing. Seriously, riveting stuff.

There is no menace in Hostel 2, no sinister undertones that made the original fun and compelling to watch. Definitely no shocks or aforementioned thrills and spills. The ending was a semi-neat twist but overall, this was incredibly tame and nowhere near the bar set by its predecessor, let alone the likes of Saw (perhaps what Hostel is most commonly compared to). Perhaps we're just getting de-sensitized but honestly, I was expecting much, much more from Roth. 2 stars for the cinematography, 1 star for the 'effort'.

Wait for it on free-to-air.
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Silent Hill (2006)
6/10
Almost had it....!
13 August 2006
Video game to movie adaptation. Are those alarm bells I hear?

Silent Hill introduces us to a rather disturbed little girl, Sharon, and her protective parents. Sharon has been sleepwalking and the final straw for her mother, Rose, comes after an encounter with a very high cliff top. So Rose does what any sensible, intelligent mother does and takes Sharon off to the town of Silent Hill - the name Sharon has been muttering in her nocturnal adventures. Being a horror movie, and with a name as creepy as Silent Hill, we're about to find out this is the place of nightmares.

To get it over with, as a video game adaptation, Silent Hill somewhat bucks the trend and provides us with an entertaining couple of hours. Stunning visuals and production values make it very easy to watch and coupled with the score, it is easy to get lost in Silent Hill. But like a lot of video games (and lets face it, movies too), the storyline has enough holes to rival a sieve. Rose makes countless, illogical decisions and not enough is revealed to the audience as the film dawdles along. Finally about two thirds of the way in and approaching the climax, the film kicks into overdrive and a barrage of revelations are made - which is all well and good but with so much information to take in it all gets rather convoluted and confusing...

I liked the film a lot but it's really a classic case of style over substance. If only they had paid half as much attention to fine tuning the story as they had with the imagery and attention to detail, Silent Hill would really be cream of the video game-to-movie crop.
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4/10
Dull, dull, dull.
4 June 2006
For me this film was the equivalent to a visual dose of Vallium, it almost put me to sleep. You know a movie is bad when you keep looking at your watch. Indeed, this is one of those films.

One would think the novel is a perfect candidate for a summer blockbuster with its mix of religious controversy, conspiracy theories and romantic European settings but something got very lost in translation to the big screen. And coming from Ron Howard, of all people, that this film is such a big failure is somewhat puzzling.

I think one of the biggest errors came down to the casting of Tom Hanks as Robert Langdon. He simply is not believable in this role and appears to be merely sleep walking his way through it. His acting seems to set the tone for the entire movie - droll and lifeless. Audrey Tatou's beauty, Ian McKellen's fine acting and Paul Bettany's albino menace are just not enough to overcome this tone that permeates the final product.

Not all is bad. There is some very nice cinematography to be seen; the Louvre, Paris, the cathedrals all look stunning. I also thought the ending scene, Tom Hank's visit to the Louvre was wonderfully done and it really was the only time during the entire move that I actually felt something and was, dare I say it, moved.

One star for the cinematography, and one each for Tatou, McKellen and Bettany.

In the end, nothing I say will change anybody's mind from seeing this film! Having read the book you will feel absolutely compelled to see it (as I was) - just don't set your expectations very high at all. It may also be that those who haven't yet read the book are going to find much more enjoyment in the film, as was the case with my friend. Lucky them.
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BloodRayne (2005)
1/10
Beyond mediocre..
15 April 2006
Where are the Movie Police? Can we please lock Uwe Boll up for good and never let him within 100 miles of a film set ever again?

BloodRayne is a video game adaptation. Alarm bells should have been ringing in my head but I decided to approach it with an open mind, I shrugged away the 2.2 rating on IMDb.com and pretended I didn't see the "Bottom 100" listing.

Yeah I know, big mistake. Don't need to tell me twice.

There is not one iota of originality within BloodRayne and it follows the tried and tested (sometimes successful) formula of "Half human, half vampire hero/heroine-in-really-bad-costume must stop evil head vampire from slaughtering the world", or something like that. Blade, Underworld..been there, done that, got the t-shirt, thanks. Which genius decided we needed another take? And this isn't even a half- baked attempt, this is just an exercise in really, really bad film-making.

The acting is absolutely horrible and all I can suppose is that the likes of Rodriguez, Madsen and Kingsley must have been desperate for a paycheck. Loken, after her turn in Terminator 3, well she just wanted her big break. All the poor girl got was a big belly flop of a role in a stinker of a movie.

With a plot as fresh as week-old roadkill, laughable, stilted dialog and action scenes with as much style and grace as a monkey in a tutu, BloodRayne is a complete and utter waste of time. Easily the worst movie so far for 2006.
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The Cave (2005)
5/10
Mediocre at best.
4 December 2005
The Cave is a very mediocre sci-fi thriller in every aspect. It's a mildly entertaining way to spend an hour and a half and there are certainly worse movies to be stuck with.

As the title suggests, the events of the movie unfold around a team of scuba scientists and an underwater cave filled with an alien-like species of creatures. They are big, they are ugly, and they like the taste of human flesh which is apparently a rare delicacy around these parts.

It's a case of paint-by-numbers, or in this instance 'film-by-numbers', after a catastrophic cave in forces the team to find another way out while dealing with the monstrous beasts that begin picking them off one by one.

Ho hum.
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Da Kath & Kim Code (2005 TV Movie)
7/10
Classic fun with Kath and Kim.
3 December 2005
After a year's hiatus Kath and Kim are back! Albeit in just a short made-for-TV movie and not a fully blown season, but I'll take what I can get.

It's great to see the show hasn't lost it's spark and the ninety minutes is full of classic Kath and Kim moments and comedy. I loved the Carols by Candlelight routine and Sharon's outburst in the wedding dress.

I felt the whole Da Vinci Code-inspired sub plot was unnecessary and probably just included to give Barry Humphries some screen time. But I suppose it gave Riley and Turner a good excuse to come out with a movie-length outing for the folks of Fountain Lake.

Not to be missed by any Kath and Kim fan. It definitely leaves me craving the new series.
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8/10
The Chocolate Factory Delivers
27 November 2005
The remakes just keep on coming and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is no exception. But as is usually the case with Tim Burton at the helm, viewers are in for a treat.

The production values on this flick must have been sky-high and the breath taking visuals are nothing less than what you would expect from Burton. They almost go so far as to steal the show, and kids will love marveling at the imaginary factory on screen and getting lost in the fantasy.

For older viewers there doesn't seem to be a lot to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, but glimpses of Willy Wonka's childhood lend some depth to the proceedings, culminating at the end with his confrontation of some childhood issues.

My other gripes with the film were the musical numbers which came across as somewhat contrived, cheesy and unnecessary, if anything they could have been shortened to a minute at most. The new Oompa Loompas look very creepy indeed but that could just be me..!

But regardless of any little story and musical gripes, you're simply going to be sucked into the fantasy of this film and it's a great ride.

I've never been a huge fan of Johnny Depp but this film did it for me and he does an amazing job with Willy Wonka with a lot of subtle nuances and quirks and some great lines. I was also skeptical about newcomer Freddie Highcomer in the titular role but all my fears were blown away by this kid. He shows a lot of promise. Praise also has to go to Helena Bonham-Carter and Noah Taylor in supporting roles, they were great in the short time they were on screen.

Highly recommended for kids and and the kids in all of us older folk.
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8/10
Tries To Be Too Much..
12 November 2005
Let me start by saying that Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children is really the coolest, most stylish, visually stunning CG film I have seen to date. It's insanely pretty to watch, but not a very fulfilling experience overall. Scratch beyond the surface and you're not going to find an awful lot.

I've played the video game on which the movie is based and I'm a huge fan of the entire series. But even being familiar with the characters and story I struggled to get a grasp on the events in this film. It seems to get carried away with a lot of self-important, pseudo philosophical mumbo jumbo - it takes itself much too seriously. Instead of delivering us even just a half decent, engaging story to go along with the kick butt visuals and action sequences, it buries itself with a convoluted and at times contrived tale that focuses on three bad guys with gender identity issues and their Oedipus Rex complex.

I love that this is way more "Final Fantasy" than its predecessor Final Fantasy: Spirits Within ever was. But the Final Fantasy feel here is mostly just a surface treatment, and that's disappointing. It seems as though they have tried too hard to cram all of the depth from a 30 hour gaming experience into the space of 90 minutes, and this competes with the hyperactive, mind-numbing action sequences that play at warp speed and demand 100% of your attention.

I understand that the US release date for this film has been pushed back and I only hope they can tinker with the storyline a little bit and make it more accessible and easy to absorb for the casual movie fan.

I gave it an 8 out of 10 purely because I love the characters and to simply watch the action unfold on screen is a trip like no other. As it is I could only recommend this film to fans of the video game and animation buffs. Not for the casual movie fan.
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Trick (1999)
2/10
Train wreck.
18 September 2005
Where do I even begin with this crud? It reeks of "cliche" and has a flashing pink neon sign to boot. A wannabe Broadway musical writer, a go-go dancer, a little dog called Trixie, the melodramatic girlfriend... there are your warning signs right there.

Throw in some of the worst acting I have ever seen, terrible, stilted dialog and drawn out scenes that play like a train wreck. Cute? Yeah, like one hundred pins in my eye! Seriously, there was nothing classy about this film, technically or otherwise.

One star simply for the soft porn eye candy. One extra star because there is worse out there. But there is so much better as well.
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Corpse Bride (2005)
5/10
What's that smell?
16 September 2005
No, I didn't like this film. I really wanted to. I was so looking forward to it. It looked wonderful. It stank.

The Corpse Bride marks Burton's 2nd foray into the world of stop motion animation, a technique that produced the amazing Nightmare Before Christmas. A cult classic, if I may say so myself. One of my all time favorite movies.

Johnny Depp plays the role of a bumbling fool (sound familiar?) in Victorian times, about to enter into an arranged marriage of social status and wealth. After a disastrous wedding rehearsal, Depp's Victor is stumbling through the forest where he unwittingly weds himself to the titular character of the film, the Corpse Bride (played by a sassy Helena Bonham Carter). Macabre, animated mayhem ensues...yadda yadda yadda.

So what went wrong for the Bride? This film suffers from that fatal flaw that so many animated films these days fall victim to. The story, the characters, the heart, they all take a backseat to the whizz bang visuals on screen. Burton has no restraint as he dazzles us with breathtaking imagery that rival today's ubiquitous 3D fare for beauty and awe. The problem is, it gets old real fast. With no story to feast on, no characters to care about, it got boring. The chuckles and giggles that came from the predictable sight gags and puns petered out to silence halfway through.

A classic case of all style and no substance. Slap in a number of forgettable musical numbers that merely seem to be an excuse to create even more on screen silliness and you have a bona-fide yawn fest.

I know this all sounds harsh, but it was Burton himself who set the bar so high his first time around. View at your own risk.
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9/10
An amazing piece of cinema..
12 September 2005
I was fortunate enough to see the North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival. That was two days ago, and this film just wont leave my mind. Not that I'm complaining because this is what good cinema is all about.

Ennis and Jack, two cowboys who fall in love. As others have touched on, Brokeback Mountain is so much more than merely a "gay cowboy movie". It perfectly captures what true, unbridled love is all about and this love transcends any issues of sexuality or gender. "Love is a force of nature". Unfortunately for many people and indeed the protagonists of our story, society doesn't always view it that way.

Kudos to Ang Lee who has not shied away from the material at all. This adaptation stays true to the original short story and the two lead actors fit the roles perfectly. Ledger and Gyllenhaal give incredibly strong performances but the supporting cast shouldn't be overlooked either, particularly a somewhat unrecognizable Michelle Williams. Solid work all around and with Mr Ang Lee's vision they have created an amazing piece of cinema that should not be missed by anybody. Without giving anything away, you are going to be moved by this one.
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The Island (2005)
7/10
Underrated!
3 August 2005
I found The Island to be highly enjoyable - a great Summer blockbuster that isn't quite mindless. It raises a number of very interesting questions...

Plenty of eye candy in every form, the two leads, the scenery, explosions, action sequences, the cinematography, everything you would expect from Michael Bay and Co.

The pacing to begin with is somewhat slow as the premise is set up (though disappointingly the trailers give it all away), but once it launches into the first action sequence it doesn't let up for some time. Yes the story has a number of plot holes but you can easily overlook them and get swept away in the fun. I've never seen Johansson on film until now and WOW, now I know what all the fuss is about. Her and McGregor display enough chemistry to make their relationship believable but only just. I'm sure this will only propel them onto bigger and better things.

My one and only gripe was with the ending scene complete with cheesy choral accompaniment - blech! Maybe Bay just couldn't help himself. I suppose no film is perfect..

7 out of 10, solid, fun entertainment, what more can you ask for?
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3/10
Largley unfunny.
16 July 2005
Where do I begin.. how does Team America get such a high rating for starters?!

Team America - a social commentary, biting satire, a dose of gross-out humor and all with puppets. Gotta give them points for originality...if they pulled it off properly, maybe.

Honestly I was expecting a lot more laughs out of this film, coming from the makers of South Park. There is plenty of sick humor that is just so, so wrong (I hope that's the first and last time I ever see puppets engaging in all forms of intercourse and fetishes), but after the first joke it gets old real fast. For the rest of the movie we're treated to lame musical numbers and drawn out dialog scenes, far from being totally tongue-in-cheek, it all seems to be taking itself pretty seriously. Which isn't very funny...

Perhaps the only redeeming feature of the movie are the puppets themselves and the sets, visually it's pretty impressive seeing what they were able to achieve.

In conclusion, stay away unless you're some die-hard South Park fan. Not much here otherwise!
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8/10
Miyazaki delivers again
12 June 2005
I love these experiences I get from Miyazaki, I never fail to be moved or affected in some way after watching one of his films. Whether it's transporting the viewer to another world completely or simply portraying the subtle visual nuances of a character, not many film makers can compare.

Howl's Moving Castle is a wonderfully bizarre, imaginative tale and serves as the perfect basis for Miyazaki's vision and style. Though it's not quite up there with Spirited Away or Mononoke Hime, Miyazaki doesn't disappoint and the film is filled with breathtaking visuals, charming characters, humor, romance, drama, all of it. I was a little apprehensive seeing the dubbed version, but my doubts were unfounded as the English actors all did a great job.

I had a couple of minor gripes about the film. The story doesn't seem as solid and cohesive as Miyazaki's earlier works, if I had to use one word to describe it it would be "scattered". The characters also seem to lack the depth of those in other Miyazaki films and I would think this is because much of their histories and motives are left unexplained, the viewer is left to simply accept them as they are, left wanting more.

Compared to other Miyazaki films, Howl's Moving Castle doesn't quite feel as complete. Compared to any other animated offering out there, this film (along with the rest of Miyazaki's), is in a league of its own. An amazing film experience - do not miss it!
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The Ring Two (2005)
8/10
Great entertainment!
29 March 2005
On pure entertainment value alone, The Ring 2 is a very enjoyable movie. Lots of creep-out moments, some really fantastic visuals and a decent storyline.

My biggest gripe with The Ring 2 is that it seems to re-write the rules constructed in the original and veers off in a completely different direction. As such, I, the viewer felt let down and somewhat cheated. The rules are disregarded and tossed out the window to create something original and while it's more of the same, it's also not, which is a good thing.

As one might logically assume, Samara is back, and this time she's looking for more than revenge. Whatever could that mean? One would just have to watch and find out.

Ring 2 could have been better, I feel, and the creepiness and horror amped up more. All the same, if you're a fan of the original or horror in general, or even just a casual movie goer, it's worth seeing.
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Heartbreakers (2001)
2/10
Pitifully sad
27 March 2005
This is easily one of the worst movies I have ever seen.

Supposedly this film is a "comedy" but with such contrived situations and jokes it's as funny as a hole in the head. Heartbreakers desperately wants to be some quirky, hybrid American Pie slash Something About Mary flick but it tries way too hard, or it doesn't try hard enough, maybe that's the problem. My fellow viewer and I just rolled our eyes and commented more than once on how utterly moronic it all was.

Perhaps this comes down to the actors too, who seem unconvincing and demonstrate next to no chemistry whatsoever. Especially between Hewitt and Weaver, and when there is no chemistry between the leads who are supposed to be mother and daughter, a film like this is destined to failure.

2 our of 10. Not truly awful but very close to it. Don't waste your time.
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Repetitive entertainment
4 March 2005
Ellen provides somewhat enjoyable viewing in the morning. My major complaint is how repetitive the show is. A lot of the segments become repetitive very, very fast as do a lot of her peculiar little personal quirks, and I wish she would shake it up more by putting in more variety.

The humor is bland and safe (sometimes downright not funny) and while she's never demeaning or crude she can be pretty sarcastic and blase toward her audience members, she doesn't have the most charismatic personality. If the show has one good thing going for it it's that Ellen can usually bag the A-listers - which everyone loves to see.
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The Haunting (1999)
3/10
Pretty....dull.
26 February 2005
The only plus for this film are the visuals, and while by today's LOTR-bar-setting standards they're nothing incredible they are still impressive and nice to watch. Also some great imagery, the mansion has a wonderful, Gothic atmosphere about it so kudos to the visuals department.

That aside, this movie stinks! Terrible, laughable dialog, especially the climax of the film, very cringe-inducing. The story has some interest but falls flat on the ground with the tacky writing and lame acting efforts of Neeson, Wilson and Zeta-Jones.

Avoid. 'Nuff said.
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3/10
Huge, overwrought, disappointing mess of celluloid
1 February 2005
THANK God I only paid $4 bucks to see this!

To put it simply, House of Flying Daggers is one huge, overwrought, disappointing mess of celluloid. Tiresome fight scenes, so much CGi it gives Finding Nemo a run for its money, stupidly unbelievable action sequences and some weak paper-thin story with the mangled remnants of a love story buried under there somewhere.

If I sound bitter, it's because I am! I had read so much good stuff about this flick and the trailers really set it up to be something great (which what a trailer is supposed to..true enough). With so much hype and promising glimpses, I had very high expectations. They fell faster than a lead balloon about 30 minutes into this thing.

Yes, here come the comparisons to Ang Lee. I loved Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, and the beauty of that film is that it makes it so easy for the viewer to suspend all belief and immerse themselves in its world and thoroughly enjoy it. I knew when I was watching the "Echo Game" scene early on in House of Flying Daggers that it wouldn't quite be so easy here. It just kept getting more ridiculous as our "heroes" were faced with one seemingly impossible predicament after another, only to find either some miraculous solution or a mysterious savior bailing them out.

This movie's Achille's heel is it's uber weak story. The whole film seems to be merely a vehicle for Zhang Yimou to showcase an endless array of contrived fight sequences with some flashy camera work and a little bit of CGI thrown in for good measure. Only an hour and a half later the audience is filled in on what's been happening when Yimou finally seems to realize he hasn't really been dropping any clues for the audience to try and construct an idea of the plot. By that time you're so restless and bored that you really don't care anymore and want it to end already.

The love story here? I didn't buy one iota of it, nor did I care half as much. The ending could have been somewhat moving if I wasn't rolling my eyes and groaning at the incredulity of it all.

The only positives this film had for me were the truly gorgeous landscapes, sets and costuming and the way Yimou works with color. It really was amazing and very nice to watch - which would have been all well and good if I had paid to come to watch pretty pictures and nothing else.

I'm going to leave it there and not waste anymore time on this film. Do yourself a favor and don't bother, don't waste a cent. Catch it on free-to-air one day if you still have any curiosity.
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Saw (2004)
8/10
A solid effort for casual and hardcore fans alike
31 January 2005
I wanted to see this film from word-of-mouth alone, or rather the buzz I had seen about it on the internet. Glad to say I wasn't disappointed.

A clever thriller/horror film that very much keeps the viewer on the edge of their seat with feelings of suspense, anxiety and fear. A stylish film, but as somebody else commented it does seem a little overdone in some areas. That would be the only flaw I could pick in this flick.

Saw does have moments where you will squirm in your seat but it's because of what is being suggested on-screen more than anything else. I think that's the true mark of a good, effective horror film. There is a dose of blood 'n guts but not to the point of being gratuitous (unlike a recent remake in Texas).

The story is disturbing, engrossing, entertaining, it has an original streak - pretty refreshing with all of the other crap masquerading as horror movies at the cinemas right now. I loved the twist at the end and it's wide open for a sequel (which according to IMDb.com is on the agenda). The acting was decent enough and definitely carries the film well. Elwes seemed a bit forced sometimes and newcomer Whannell had a bit of uneasiness about him, but all in all they and the supporting cast did a great job.

A very solid effort and for casual and hardcore fans alike, you can't miss it.
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6/10
Pretty...complicated.
9 January 2005
A lot of this film went right over my head, and I'm sure the bad, hearing-impaired-only subtitling had a lot to do with that (thankyou Dreamworks).

I don't know if I'm just not "intelligent" enough (I usually seem to get by alright with every other movie - and no I don't need to be spoon-fed all the information) but there are a lot of references in this movie that seem to be there just to make it seem more intelligent, and a lot of dialog that just seems to go round and round. So overall I was kind of disappointed.

What GiTS2 does have is plenty of amazingly beautiful imagery and perhaps the most impressive CGI I have seen in a couple of years. Coupled with a haunting soundtrack and great audio effects, Inoccence could have been something special if it just wasn't so darn smart..

I could only recommend this to hardcore anime geeks, uber intelligent people who will get all the references and be able to follow it all, or people who like looking at pretty things.
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9/10
A very enjoyable sequel.
18 November 2004
I loved this film. It took me out of my life for all of 110 minutes and I enjoyed every moment of it.

Though it did seem to plod along in a few areas toward the end, for the most part the laughs flowed thick and fast for my friend and the packed audience I watched this with. It's been so long since I saw the first, but I think this sequel was even funnier.

Renee Zellweger is adorable as Bridget Jones and the role fits her like a glove. Colin Firth does well as Mr Darcy and Hugh Grant returns as the sleazy slimeball Daniel Cleaver, a role he plays all too well.

Personally I don't understand all the negative reviews this has been receiving here on IMDb.com and wonder if they saw the same movie?! It's not even a fraction as bad as they seem to make out. I highly recommend this flick to guys and girls alike.
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Shark Tale (2004)
3/10
Big, stinky, rotten Shark Tale..
25 October 2004
We'll be seeing Shrek 3 within the next couple of years and I'm sure a Shrek 4 is in the pipeline already. DreamWorks must know it can't milk the Shrek franchise forever and if it was hoping SharkTale could prove a worthy successor, they are sadly mistaken.

I believe this film was originally titled SharkSlayer (before becoming the unimaginatively titled SharkTale), and I bet DreamWorks was hoping it would be their NEMO Slayer. Too bad, try again. I'm sorry but comparisons are inevitable between two completely CGI films set in a vast watery expanse.

SharkTale is all flash, pretty colors and big name actors with an endless drivel of pop- culture references. Pretty on the surface, completely lacking underneath. Will Smith's over the top, contrived schtick became irritating after the first couple of minutes and Black, De Niro, Zellweger and Jolie are nothing but big name drawcards.

The "weird-looking humanized fish-people" kept making me think I was watching some alien film. It was only because of the bubbles and seaweed and sand that I was reminded this was set under the ocean.

This film is for the kids, and anybody who gets a kick out of pop-culture jokes and flashy CG visuals. For something meatier, with heart and originality, go elsewhere.

DreamWorks had better get a new recipe because this one was tired and stale six months ago. Get some better stories. Get some funnier jokes. Get some originality. For now and the foreseeable future, the computer animation crown is safe and sound in Pixar's hands.
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1/10
Terrible, terrible!
6 August 2004
Oh. My. God.

What a terrible, terrible film. I'd been wanting to see this for quite some time, not quite believing the negative buzz surrounding it. Now I can say I am so glad I didn't waste the ten bucks to see this in the theater! Believe it! This film is TERRIBLE!

Perhaps the only good thing about it is the gorgeous art direction. It sure makes for pretty pictures. The visuals alone are worthy of ten stars but overall, they don't do anything to save this flick's bacon.

Avoid it like the plague.
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