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Sleigh bells ring and ring and ring and ring and...
I wanted to like this but only got increasingly annoyed by the constant ringing of sleigh bells with every cut. I'm not exaggerating to say I'd guess about third of this movie is nothing but sleigh bells ringing over text.
The Amityville Horror (2005)
Terribly done... everything that was frightening about the story is now gone
I'm not a fan of remaking films- there have been a few decent remakes- but for the most part, the magic of the original is lost. This time is no exception.
For months, I've been hearing and reading about how this remake wasn't a "remake" at all, but was going to follow the story of the book, rather than the first movie. Boy, was that a lie. Not only did many of the things in this version come from the first (including dialogue which was hardly changed), there were new story lines, new fiction that we'd never read or seen before. If this was supposed to accurately follow the book, I must have read a different book.
There was nothing frightening about this film at all. The creepiness of the original ghost story is no longer there. This time, we have more of a monster/zombie-type flick that isn't the slightest bit jump-worthy.
If you were a fan of the original or the book, don't see this. It'll upset you and make you wish for your time and money back. If you've never seen the original or haven't read the book, do yourself a favor and do one of those two things and forget about seeing this waste of time.
Definitely one of the worst movies I have seen in a LONG time. Even if this wasn't an Amityville remake, there's no way it'd stand up to any of the decent horror films out there.
American Splendor (2003)
Really captured the essence of Cleveland
Being a lifelong Clevelander, I must say this movie captured the feel of Cleveland better than any other movie I've ever seen. It may be that you have to live in the area to feel it, but it can give outsiders a feel of this drab city. Fantastic, if just for that reason.
A great film most people will never see
I've been waiting on Manic since it was in production, so I've had a long wait. I must say it was worth it.
I really have no complaints about the film; the acting was great, especially from Joseph Gordon-Levitt- who really proves what a good actor he is, Don Cheadle, and Zooey Deschanel. The story seems very accurate, haunting, and at times heartbreaking, as it paints a very realistic picture of teens with problems. There's no fluff here.
Direction was great. Jordan Melamed's debut proved to be a good one- and I look forward to more by this unknown director.
A Day of Thanksgiving (1951)
American Propaganda Film
Classic educational film about a family that can't afford to have Turkey, and how a family learns to accept that and appreciate what they have. As with the early educational films, this one's cheesy and pretty pointless, and of course reminds the little children watching that the United States is a wonderful country, and that we should be thankful for living in this country (it's basically just a propaganda film).
Lots of use of words such as "gee," and "golly."
Duck and Cover (1952)
Hilarious for so many reasons
I'm sure the atomic bomb scares caused them to make this film to ease children's fears of an incident, by giving them hope that by covering their head and neck, they'd have a chance of survival. But, it's hilarious- there's no way those who made the film could have believed what they were saying, and the way things are acted out make it even funnier.
The Delicious (2003)
Another great short by Scott Prendergast
Scott Prendergast is a genius... well maybe not a genius, but he's got a great, twisted sense of humor. Again, he delivers snortworthy laughs with The Delicious, a film about a man who's found his calling in life... his calling: The Delicious.
Ghost Ship (2002)
Don't waste your time...
Again and again and again we have a movie with the modern horror style that does nothing but bore. There are no creepy moments here. Even the decent cast couldn't save this movie.
The script isn't so bad it's laughable, it's just bad. The twists are predictable, have been done before, and rather boring. Even with a few decent actors, the one-dimensional characters are not ones you care about.
Stay away, rent something better. 1/10. (It was a 3/10 until the last 20 minutes or so).
Punch-Drunk Love (2002)
Sleeper that needs a few more hours rest...
OK- I am a PT Anderson Fan. OK- I am a film fan. OK- I am a fan of artsy movies. But I was not a fan of Punch Drunk Love.
Here, we have an example of a great director trying to be someone he's not; is he a victim of the masses who expect something a slight bit on the quirky side? or was he going for the "art film" look in every shot just because he could?
Either way, it does not succeed in my book. I've loved PT Anderson's films up until this point, but with this one, it seemed like he was trying too hard to impress the audience and give them (us) something new. For me, it didn't work. It MAY have worked with a first time director trying to find his/her style, but not a vet who already has both a mainstream AND a cult following. This one tried too hard to satisfy that cult following- and this member of that cult saw right through the artsy stuff and wondered why he chose to do something that's so obviously "fake."
Cold Creek Manor (2003)
If you overlook everything that couldn't POSSIBLY happen...
...then then movie isn't bad. However, anyone with any sense of reality would have problems doing so.
Forget everything you've been taught about life- this movie doesn't follow those rules. Instead, it expects the audience to dumb-it-down and just buy into every error there is.
Other than all of the impossibles this movie presents, it's a mildly good thriller. However, all of the "errors" lowered it big time for me. 4/10
Trigger Happy TV (2000)
I always forget to catch the show, but when I do see Trigger Happy TV, I hope I'm not in the middle of doing something else, because I will fall completely awestruck in front of the TV. Fantastic humor, without going "over the top" and being stupid and ridiculous. Absolutely brilliant!
Midnight Madness (1980)
WEEE this is still jolly good fun! As with most of my friends, we had seen this movie on HBO when we were young, and then had been searching ever since for a copy of it. When they finally rereleased it a few years ago, we had a Midnight Madness party... and the movie held up well. Sure, it's pure cheese, but it's still a lot of fun. If you didn't see MM when you were young, you might not appreciate its value today.
The Haunting of Hell House (1999)
This is NOT a classic haunted house flick
Save your money if you're looking for a good haunted house flick. This isn't even a bad haunted house movie... it's just a bad movie. I was bored 15 minutes in, and it never got any better. First of all, the direction is poor, as is the cinematography... it looks poorly done and cheap... there's a story, if you stay awake to follow it. It sure doesn't move quickly. If you're looking to be creeped out, stay away. If you're watching because your class is reading the story... well then tell your teacher that the class should read a more interesting Henry James story.
Full Circle (1977)
Read the book instead...
After reading Peter Straub's "Julia," I searched and searched for this movie, and finally found a copy. Most movies do not live up to the books they were based upon, but a lot come close... THIS does not. This movie is slow, bowing, and lacks the creepiness the book has, not to mention the confusing scenes in the movie.
The book was really good... the movie was a sub par effort... sad.
Lone Star State of Mind (2002)
Terribly boring and unfunny
I found this movie extremely dull and laughed exactly one time. The "comedy," if you really want to call it that, is beyond juvenile... and not even the funny juvenile humor that makes other movies good. Overused accents are very rarely funny, especially when they're so over accentuated (like in this film) that it gets to be annoying. How so many people liked this movie is beyond me, but it makes me think about how bad society is becoming.
Don't waste your time
Spoilers may follow!!
This movie gets worse as it goes on... not that it starts great, but... Anyway, instead of relying upon real creepiness, they've chosen to use sound to make you jump (didn't work once for me), whether it be a slight burst of music or thunderclap, it gets to the point where you can expect it and predict it before it happens. They've also chosen to borrow a scene from The Shining (mother with a knife in the bathroom with young son, while crazed father is trying to break down the door).
And Then Came Summer (2000)
And Then Came Amateur Hour
I cannot begin to explain so that others will realize how BAD this movie is. On a recommendation I rented this (unfortunately my list of movies to watch doesn't tell me who told me to see them, or I'd never speak to them again). It was AWFUL. The acting was very amateur (that's an insult to amateurs actually, I've seen some home movies that are better than this); The directing is almost nonexistent: two characters are often scrunched together (on a couch or standing) so closely so they fit in the frame-- looks very unnatural. The story... hah! I think most of it was adlibbed... and quite poorly. Most of the dialogue is so forced and fake that it's sickening... and to top it off, most of the dialogue doesn't relate to the story AT ALL. Definitely one of the worst I have ever seen. 1/10 only because we can't give zeros.
Seven Days to Live (2000)
I'm always looking for a good haunted house/ghost flick, and I have to say I haven't seen a good new one in years. Instead of something new, here we have a movie that borrows aspects and ideas from a bunch of other haunted house/horror flicks and combines them into one... making this very unoriginal and very dull. Watch The Shining, Poltergeist, The Changeling, Amityville Horror, and others instead of watching this rip off flick.
Crystal Voyager (1973)
Some great visuals
Though not really an entertaining film, Crystal Voyager is definitely one for true fans of film to see. The documentary/story is not completely boring, but it really doesn't go much further than "I base my life upon surfing." What the film has are a bunch of very intriguing shots of waves: from afar, close-up, inside, and underneath. The added bonus of Pink Floyd's "Echoes" over the end of the film is just that: an added bonus to a neat film.
The Body (1970)
After years of listening to the odd soundtrack, I finally tracked the film down. It's a combination documentary/art film that is surprisingly interesting. The odd film score (composed by Roger Waters and Ron Geesin) makes much more sense, as it's set to the action of the film. Worth seeing if you like odd films, and you're able to track down a decent copy.
China O'Brien II (1990)
Watch it as a comedy!
As long as you go into this movie knowing that it's terrible: bad acting, bad "effects," bad story, bad... everything, then you'll love it. Though this one isn't as good/bad as its predecessor, it's definitely good for a handful of laughs. Also, the drunker you get, the better the movie gets... have some wine with the movie's cheese.
China O'Brien (1990)
Watch it as a comedy!
As long as you go into this movie knowing that it's terrible: bad acting, bad "effects," bad story, bad... everything, then you'll love it. This is one of my favorite "goof on" movies; watch it as a comedy and have a dozen good laughs!
Basically this short video shows a parade... lots of horses... nothing special. We see President McKinley for a second or two tops... if we see him at all (it's hard to tell since the quality of the video). Not even really worth watching from a historical standpoint.
Lighting AI (2002)
This short documentary (about 4 minutes long) appears on the AI DVD second disk, and is actually quite pointless. We gain no new information from it... It's definitely not a must see, or even a "watch it if you have the DVD." Watch it if you're bored and need to kill four minutes.
Die Another Day (2002)
Bond 20 = #20 out of 20
To add to my collection, I bought the latest Bond DVD, got home, and popped the sucker into the DVD player... only to have to stop it 45 minutes into it (I finished it a few days later). The first half hour is pure trash, and only gets slightly better.
My major complaints are as follows: *What's the deal with the first half hour??? *the "blue screen" shots were done better in the early films; they are so incredibly noticeable in this film. *Diamond-face-man... come on; poor villian and poor makeup job. *The special effects are not up to par with what could have been done. Some of the explosions are good, but other things are just too cheesy looking. *TOO unrealistic, even for a Bond film. Bond would have been dead ten times over... after awhile, I was actually hoping he'd die, just to give me some satisfaction.
I didn't care about the characters (including Bond), the one-liners (they were extra bad in this one- not even funny the way they're supposed to be), and the story was poor.
In my opinion, this is the worst film in the James Bond video library. 3/10