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Jack the Ripper1888
(you wish you were me).
I watched KIDS last night at a friends house with a bunch of people. My friend had bought a bunch of new movies, ROMPER STOMPER, KILL BILL, DONNIE DARKO *coughsucks*, whatever. He decided to put in KIDS, one of his older movies. "Has anyone seen this?" he asked us. No one said anything, and then another guy on the couch said "I saw part of it in rehab..." "Oh hell yeah dude, put that on!" was the consensus after that. And holy god this movie is so relentless and violent, not saying it wasn't true to the lifestyles of those it was trying to portray, but goddamn, i don't know anyone that talks like the one dude that goes around infecting everyone with the hivvy. The scene where the kids all jump the guy in the basketball court was good, and all in all, the flow of the movie moved nicely. I just can't say that this movie necessarily represents everyone in that sort of lifestyle accurately. Yeeeah. See it anyway.
House of 1000 Corpses (2003)
I really don't get it...
There must be something wrong here. Because, I really don't get it. I didn't find this movie scary in the least. In fact, I found it damn hilarious. Sid Haig's scenes had be laughing harder than I have in a long time.
Obviously, October 31st was Halloween 2003. Me and a friend went to Blockbuster and rented this movie along with GHOST SHIP. We wanted to see Rob's movie first because I had heard it was scarya s hell. Well, the opening sequence involving Haig's character is funny as all hell. I couldn't stop laughing. He immediately became my favorite character of the movie.
On the hand of gore and sadistic violence: it wasn't that bad. I have seen far worse. When I got this movie, I was expecting a cross between TERROR TOONS and THE TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE. What I got was a whole lot of...nothing.
I enjoy Rob Zombie's music a lot (although I feel he is in desperate need of a new album as he has been remixing the same 3 songs for the last four years) and I was expecting more from him. The film ran for quite a while, and not too much happened. A lot of it was incoherent and didn't make much sense. There was flashes of gore and nudity, and I didn't quite understand what they were thrown in there for. To create illusion or something? A lot of it was coherent however, and those are the parts that save HOUSE OF 1000 CORPSES from complete annihilation.
HOUSE OF 1000 CORPSES: 3/5.
28 Days Later... (2002)
Stupid beyond all belief...
This film did not live up to the hype at all. I was expecting solid zombie/mutated people killer movie. That's only half of 28 DAYS LATER. People all over have been bashing the far better RESIDENT EVIL and then complimenting this film as if it was one of the better films of the year. This movie was totally horrid.
The camerawork is very nice, the special effects were actually pretty good, but the story needed to be worked on. A lot. *SPOILERS TO FOLLOW*
The introduction and demise of characters doesn't work at all. I thought John Carpenter's GHOSTS OF MARS was bad at that, but this film is far worse. Brendan Gleeson is introduced about a half hour into the movie and disappears about a half hour before the end. Other characters that have a lot to do with the end of the film are not introduced until much later in the film and the ending was completely out of sync with the rest of the film.
The zombie story of it all is only about half the movie. In fact, they're not even zombies. They're just people with a virus that makes them go crazy. These mutants aren't even explained good enough. What do they do? Do they eat the victims? We never find out. The movie leaves an impression on you, but not the one you were hoping for. The film is incoherent and lazy. It had a great premise going for it, and it was moving up on the list to being one of the best zombie films I've ever seen. But it all lost it towards the end.
Major Spoilers Ahead: So these army guys get really horny because all the women in the near vacinity are dead and they haven't had sex in about a month. These guys are ready to go insane. They need women!! This little sub-plot of the film basically ruins the whole damn thing. It takes on all the attention of the movie for about a half hour and it bored the hell out of me. Completely out of tone with the whole rest of the film. Horrible.
28 DAYS LATER: 2/5. (Great premise, terrible ending).
Scary Movie 3 (2003)
A complete failure.
First off, let me start out my saying that I laughed probably 3 times throughout the entire film. I went with some friends wanting to see THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE but when we couldn't get in honestly and were denied to be let in, we had to see SCARY MOVIE 3. Let me say: it was horrid.
Most of the jokes fell flat on their faces. About four of the jokes worked and there was too much of a story. The original SCARY MOVIE followed the plot of SCREAM but strayed away from a lot of the subplots and sort of made up its own story as it went along. This film did that also. But it was very unsuccessful. Spoofs of SIGNS, THE RING, and 8 MILE are the main focuses of this terrible atrocity.
The Wayans Brothers ran out of gags to keep the series going. That is how the IMDb reporter put it. And he was right. I was hoping that David Zucker would be able to save this third installment, but sadly he lost it. The fact that this film was the only PG-13 one in the series, just makes it worse. The opening sequence with Jenny McCarthy and Pamela Anderson is a complete tease. The story moved along decently enough, but it was far too hokey for my tastes. However, there was some fat gay guy and his lover (both wearing leather jackets) sitting two seats down from me that were laughing their asses off. This was probably part of the reason I loathed this film so much because they were continually talking about what they were going to do to each other as soon as they got home. That, and the fact that they wouldn't move down a seat so another couple could fit in on our row. Anyway, the movie sucked. If you do choose to see it (which I don't recommend) wait for the video.
SCARY MOVIE 3: 2/5.
You'll be tempted to leave early.
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)
I must say that I totally disagree with the IMDb review of this film, as I feel very strongly that this movie was good. People are very against remakes these days, which I don't see why. I see remakes as a chance to spice a movie up a little bit and to bring it up to date with the times. Other people see these movies as piles of garbage that will "ruin" the originals. How the remake would ruin the original, I have no idea. These kinds of people shouldn't think freely, because they do a bad job at it.
Tobe Hooper's legendary original THE TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE, was a mind bending head-trip. We all know that. People always brag about how the movie didn't try to scare you as much with sadistic gore, but rather how it tried to impose creepiness soley through the power of suggestion. But then again, those people need to realize that THE TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE (the original) was a very violent movie. It had violence up the ass, and no one can deny it. THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT tried more to scare the audience through the power of suggestion. Hooper's film did not.
However, this remake doesn't care about trying to scare you through the power of suggestion, because it knows that it doesn't have to. The cast is somewhat forgettable, although their performances are almost Oscar caliber in the sense of this being a horror movie. If you were being chased by a freak with a chainsaw, you wouldn't act much different than these people do. People always say something like "oh if that was me, I would do----". No you wouldn't. You would be too scared to even think about doing that.
Back on the subject of this film being a remake, I have some more to say. The film isn't really that much of a remake. It borrows heavily from the first film the main concept and idea, but pretty much the entire script has been rewritten. Of course there are a bunch of similarities, but the bulk of the film is a lot different than the original. I have been waiting for this film since like, May of 2003 and now that it has finally come out, I am just so gleefully happy. FREDDY VS. JASON is nothing compared to this film. But the horror films previous to this one were also very exciting.
The whole motif of this remake was that it was supposed to be "more suspenseful". Which, I thought it was. I jumped several times and so did the friends that I went with. We also the movie to be darkly hilarious. The only complaint we had was that Leatherface was not given the screen time and attention that he deserved. There were many new "family" members added into the film and I think they sort of hogged some of Leatherface's rightful screen time. The chainsaw is scary as hell, and the film takes you on a shocking journy of fear that you won't be able to shake off. If you are like me, and enjoy nightmares, then you will love this. The movie is certainly a fun time and if you didn't see it on opening night (we saw it on opening night) then I recommend that you see it as soon as humanly possible. I don't care what people say, this remake is better. See also some of this year's finer horror films: WRONG TURN, FREDDY VS. JASON, or HOUSE OF THE DEAD. All in all, this is a nice, spooky, goody-bag of a Halloween treat.
THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE: 5/5.
Final Destination 2 (2003)
A true head-trip.
Truly original and darkly hilarious, FINAL DESTINATION 2 is a very worthy sequel to the landmark original. The effects are very well done and the suspense is pulled off perfectly. Death is hunting down a group of people that survive a freak car accident.
A.J. Cook pulls off a completely good acting job here (much better than the one she played in RIPPER: LETTER FROM HELL) and the others fit in with their roles well also. Michael Landes, Ali Larter, T.C. Carson, Jonathan Cherry, Tony Todd, and Keegan Connor Tracy are those bound for the grave. They all boast the top-notch acting talent of most neo-horror films today. Films today usually go for either stylish effects and impressive graphics or more psychological factors that could more effectively screw you in the head. FINAL DESTINATION 2 goes for both. And it actually works too, which is the thing most amazing about it.
Being a sequel (to the great FINAL DESTINATION, of course) sure it isn't as good as the original, but it comes pretty damn close. It lives up to the plot and story of the first one well enough and there is some creepiness present to give some audience members nightmares. The beginning accident sequence is truly chilling and some of the deaths are very disturbing. Most of all however, is that FINAL DESTINATION 2 can score on the level of being an effective and clever horror thriller but also be a fun movie to watch with friends or while you people are drunk or something. Being able to be both things at once is a rare feature in most films today.
Personally, I didn't think FINAL DESTINATION needed a sequel, but this sure as hell changed my mind. I cannot wait for there to be a third.
FINAL DESTINATION 2: 5/5.
Better than DARKNESS FALLS, but not by much...
AHHHHH!!!!!! Scary!! No, not really. This movie had some serious potential, and it was all wasted. I hate it when Hollywood does that. They get me all pumped up to see something and then they flop. Wes Craven "presents" THEY, a tale about vicious goblins that hide in the dark. It has basically a carbon-copy story of DARKNESS FALLS, only the villains are different. Ask anyone, DARKNESS FALLS was...not too good. It had some entertainment value to it, but other than that, that movie was made to be forgotten and THEY isn't much different. The thing about THEY is that it thought it was. THEY wanted to be different, but failed. Sadly. Both THEY and DARKNESS FALLS will probably show up in the Wal-Mart bargain bin before the end of the year.
There are no really big stars that play here, which is usually a feature that helps movies become more scary and realistic because the person being hacked up or frightened isn't some famous Nicolas Cage where you can just tell yourself "it's only a movie...". But for some reason, THEY lacks that feature. It has suspense to it, but numerous rewrites of the script and not knowing where to go with it, are probably what killed THEY. Not to mention the title. The title could have been about 80% better. Ethan Embry is pretty much wasted here because his part isn't huge, and Jon Abrahams is even more wasted as he hardly has a part at all. THEY is still worth the watch as it is somewhat in the tradition of THE RING.
THEY gets 3/5.
Phone Booth (2002)
Tension around every corner...
I've been waiting quite a long time to see this, and now that I have seen it, I am amazed. PHONE BOOTH manages to keep the tale flowing smoothly and in such a confined space. Director Joel Schumacher hits out two in a row with first BAD COMPANY and now PHONE BOOTH. This film was the better of the two.
Well, when the movie first started, I was a little worried. Because, there is no music, bad sound, and the picture wasn't the greatest for the first ten minutes of the movie and it almost seems like you're watching some cheap independent film. But, when Colin Farrell finally gets into the booth, things heat up immensely. Colin Farrell...hmmm, is he the guy who has been playing in every other movie to try and make a name for himself? He sure is! Now that everyone saw him in THE RECRUIT, DAREDEVIL, MINORITY REPORT, and AMERICAN OUTLAWS everyone likes the guy. All the young girls think he's hott for some reason, and he is actually able to reel in the money. Wow, he really made something of himself quickly. He does also have some real acting potential.
The film is actually kinda preachy and has religious undertones to it that not too many people actually noticed. It has eerie similarites to David Fincher's masterpiece SE7EN in which a killer kills people according to the seven deadly sins. This is very similar. Because this sniper that holds Farrell in the booth did not just randomly pick him out. He thought about it first.
Aside from the film's biblical and preachy sub-theme, PHONE BOOTH didn't bother me too much. It's confined area (which supposedly got on some people's nerves after a while) really isn't all that bad. The street is shown, there is a lot of tension which causes people to move around in their seats, I'm sure, and Colin Farrell keeps the story moving. Forest Whitaker doesn't have that big of a part, and neither do Radha Mitchell and Katie Holmes. Keifer Sutherland on the other hand is hardly ever even seen in the film. He plays the voice of the caller and is seen in brief shots only. Funny how he managed to recieve star-billing. My bottom line-rating, PHONE BOOTH is tense beyond all belief. I can almost guarantee that you will enjoy it. Recommendations: PANIC ROOM, and SE7EN.
PHONE BOOTH: 5/5.
Disney rises to new heights...
The thing that is so big about PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL (other than its ten-word title and it's 2 and a half hour running time) is the fact that this is a hit. I mean, a movie about pirates, that has a lot of skeleton guys walking around. It's perfect for the little kids and its not been plunged to the horrid depths of being so stupid that adults (yes, you small minded adults) will even like it. Kiera Knightly is hott (for the guys), Orlando Bloom is a heart-throb for the girls, and Johnny Depp wears heavy mascara. How can this movie fail?
Well, there are so many changes in the plot, so many twists and turns-- this is a direct result of the writer not knowing what to do and not knowing where he was going with the script. Nevertheless, the film does have a sort of creepy, moody feel to it that helps it become nostalgic and just kind of has the words "Box Office Smash" written all over it. Granted, half of its audience members are probably people who are just wasting time before THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN comes out, this film still stands on its own. Director Gore Virbinski again returns, getting better all the time. His last attempt THE RING was an extreme hit but many people are getting quite bored with it now (sequel time maybe?). Hopefully Virbinski will only continue his trend of gradually getting better with each new film.
The graphics are well done and the film contains several moments of eerie horror and thrilling action sequences. The humor comes in bounds (again, trying to amuse the little kiddies) and Johnny Depp acts very 'action-hero', kinda like Brendan Fraser's role in THE MUMMY. He still does very well. The films stands on its own, has loads of originality and is a hit. It won't stay that way forever though.
PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL gets 4/5.
MANSON IS KING!
I have been a *HUGE* fan of Marilyn Manson for quite some time now, have all of his CDs, and most recently, with his latest album "The Golden Age of Grotesque" (which was a kick-ass album) had a bonus DVD short-film included with it.
DOPPELHERZ is a horrific, thought-provoking independent film. It runs at about a half hour or something and it is really only worth watching once or twice, but it is a very interesting work. Manson, throughout, repeats phrases over and over again to the tune of his intro song, 'Thaeter'. Some of the most thought-provoking lines spoken are "Do you think animals believe in God?" and "I am a VCR funeral of dead memory waste".
All in all, this short is weird as hell, but if it's Manson, it's cool. DOPPELHERZ: 5/5.
The River Wild (1994)
There are times when I agree with the people who bash this film, and then there are times when I agree with the people who think this movie is one of the best action films ever (which it isn't by the way).
Meryl Streep acts decently here, but there are a lot of things that just don't flow right. The plot is good, but the pacing isn't all that great. Meryl Streep acts too 'action hero-ish' for my tastes, and considering it is her first shot at a thriller, she should have taken it slower. Like other action films, Meryl Streep just doesn't seem to understand that she isn't the one calling the shots. Kevin Bacon and John C. Reilley take on the roles of the bad guys here, but Streep doesn't know that. Bacon wasn't really good at playing bad guys yet (his later improvements with HOLLOW MAN and TRAPPED were good). Streep does not do a very good job of acting out scenes where they are going to be in danger. She's just bad at those.
Joseph Mazello, however, did a fine job, after getting plenty of experience with action films from JURASSIC PARK. Director Curtis Hanson (8 MILE) does pull off another effective and well-done movie, just not as good as some of his other works. THE RIVER WILD: 3/5.
Gone Nutty (2002)
Just like MONSTERS, INC. which ICE AGE was released almost back-to-back with, this film just *has* to have a nice, little short film to accompany it's trip to VHS and DVD.
MONSTERS, INC. included two short films. Not one, but two. The okay, MIKE'S NEW CAR and the 2001 Academy Award winning feature FOR THE BIRDS (which I do not see how it is possible). ICE AGE also just *has* to include a tiny little short film. This one is called GONE NUTTY. It is also titled "Scrat's Missing Adventure" on the box cover, but either way...
Like the terribly unfunny FOR THE BIRDS, GONE NUTTY is somewhat mean-spirited and not very nice. Scrat sure does take an ass-whooping here in the short time this film runs (which is around 4 minutes, so its not like this film is wasting much time)...it is a nice appetizer to warm you up before you watch, ICE AGE, but it is just not great.
GONE NUTTY: 3/5.
Mike's New Car (2002)
Not that great...
This little short movie followed MONSTERS, INC. and we had already seen the Academy Award winning short FOR THE BIRDS (which I'm sorry to say, I found terrible). This short is not much better.
Still, I actually laughed once on this short movie, which was actually surprising, considering that the whole thing was just plain stupid. There wasn't much of a purpose to this short film other than that maybe Billy Crystal and John Goodman enjoyed making MONSTERS, INC. so much that they wanted to keep working. Kinda like the "extended ending" on the SHREK video which was basically just a bunch of people singing karoke. Anyway, the whole isn't all that great, but I do recommend seeing this before you watch FOR THE BIRDS.
MIKE'S NEW CAR: 3/5.
For the Birds (2000)
I must be missing something...
Like everyone else who saw this quaint, little animated short, I had to see it before I could watch MONSTERS, INC. But, unlike everyone else, I don't see what is so great about this. (And I looked through every single comment written on this, they are all positive). I just really don't understand what was so funny about this short.
I even watched it again after finding that everyone (literally) loved this short film. I still don't see anything good in it, other than the animation which was very well done, but other than that, I did not find it funny in the least. I even thought the birds were a little cruel until I discovered that that was done on purpose. FOR THE BIRDS is nothing special in my opinion, but the animation was good as hell. I recommend you wait until the end of the actual film for MIKE'S NEW CAR which also was nothing to brag about.
I will even give it another try, but I don't think it'll do much. FOR THE BIRDS gets 3/5 (that is average on my scale...and those points are only for the animation).
Monsters, Inc. (2001)
One of the very best films of the year.
Released almost back-to-back with ICE AGE, both films had basically carbon copied plots of each other. I doubt they did it on purpose, but they are almost the exact same thing. The two short films included on the VHS and DVD, MIKE'S NEW CAR and FOR THE BIRDS were not very good, but MONSTERS, INC. was truly a masterpiece.
While I wouldn't go as far as to call it one of the top 250 movies, it was still very good. There was a lot of adult humor in the film, which made it easier for me to watch the movie, but this is still aimed more for kids. I usually enjoy Pixar movies because they usually try to include a little bit of everything in their movies (and thankfully they leave out the stupid, annoying songs included in so many kids' movies). TOY STORY was their first movie, and then they dished out A BUG'S LIFE, TOY STORY 2, and most recently FINDING NEMO. Their main big plot of almost all of these films though, is getting old. It is amazing that kids haven't noticed that all of their favorite Pixar films have the *exact* same plot in all of them. Dreamworks's SHREK was a change of pace only because it was a parody, but almost all of Pixar's flicks are about some friends trying to get somewhere to rescue somebody or something almost exactly like that. Either way, MONSTERS, INC. was still a very good movie as it did complete the one major feat that a lot of films are not able to do nowadays: Entertain people.
MONSTERS, INC. gets 5/5.
Halloween 5 (1989)
Not bad and not good.
I don't know why people just can't leave a good horror movie alone for once. HALLOWEEN, which was held in such high regard as a horror film had to be ruined by these, now countless sequels that just keep on going, and going, and going, and going...
HALLOWEEN 4 wasn't the best installment in the series in the first place, so why did people decide to make a fifth entry? We will never know. But now number nine is in the works. The film runs on way too long and a lot of the situations written here are just not believable. Once you think the film has ended, no...it just keeps on going and going and going.
Donald Pleasance still looks enthusiastic about making the film even though it is his fourth Michael Meyers movie. Movies like this are the kind designed to waste our time. Not that I had anything better to do, but I am still a little upset about the whole thing. There isn't much of a story, except that Michael comes back yet again and starts killing more people without much of a reason. Not that its bad or anything...killing people is his job. The latest HALLOWEEN: RESURRECTION was being released with Michael's buddy Jason's new movie, JASON X. Now that those films are getting old, people just *have* to keep the series, so film number nine is most likely in the works.
Let's all just hope the ninth movie is a lot better than this atrocity. HALLOWEEN 5 gets 2/5.
P.S. This film is still better than the sixth film, HALLOWEEN: THE CURSE OF MICHAEL MEYERS.
Bruce Almighty (2003)
Jim Carrey returns to comedy... (Possible Spoilers)
Jim Carrey, returning to comedy after his most recent feat with THE MAJESTIC (which was a great film) has not created his most memorable performance, but this one comes a lot closer than some of the others.
LIAR LIAR was his best work to date. ME, MYSELF & IRENE comes next. So, I guess we could place BRUCE ALMIGHTY a couple notches about THE GRINCH. It comes close to LIAR LIAR is story and context, but the story is just not juicy enough. Instead of having messages of understanding that deal about the problems of everyday life (as in LIAR LIAR), BRUCE ALMIGHTY creates messages about the understanding of religion and messages about god. I am not Christian, not in the least, but I was still able to watch BRUCE ALMIGHTY and not get completey sidetracked and bothered by the religions notions and humor. I thought a lot of it was completely hilarious.
Then there are the religious people. There are the kinds of religious people that can watch movies like this and laugh at the jokes and can understand that their god most likely has a sense of humor and can take a few jokes. I mean, I'm sure that their god wouldn't be happy with films like END OF DAYS or STIGMATA, but that's too bad. But, then there are the kind of religious people that could watch this same movie and not crack a smile the entire time. Why? Because their religion has become so big a part of their life, that it practically *is* their life. For some people, it is, but the average church-goer whose life is totally controlled by religion, that person will not find this movie appealing. I say to that person, "It's just a movie, crabass! Lighten up!".
Jennifer Aniston, taking the place of Maura Tierney from LIAR LIAR is good as she appears to have walked in the role, open and with enthusiasm. Other cast members, Philip Baker Hall (who just always looks tired) and other supporting members mostly have the same amount of eagerness to be working with the great Jim Carrey in a film.
Director Tom Shadyac returns from DRAGONFLY (which was a very good movie, no matter what other people say) to go back to comedy as well. After collaborating with Steve Odekerk (KUNG POW!: ENTER THE FIST) on PATCH ADAMS, Shadyac got a taste for comedy. Carrey and Odekerk also collaborated with Shadyac on ACE VENTURE: WHEN NATURE CALLS. Still, BRUCE ALMIGHY doesn't top Carrey and Shadyac's best (LIAR LIAR) but comes a lot closer than the others have. Carrey doesn't have his usual trademark face-making, weird noise making, talking-out-of-his-ass feature, voice changing and other stuff from previous films, but there is enough funny dialogue and there is a scene like the "noise-making" feature but it isn't Carrey who does it. Still funny. Avoid Jim Carrey's older works. You can see BRUCE ALMIGHTY because it is still a good film. It is still a step backwards (a very small step backwards) but hopefully he will only get better with time.
BRUCE ALMIGHTY: 4/5.
Wrong Turn (2003)
Interesting. Very, very interesting...
Like Rob Zombie's feature film debut HOUSE OF 1000 CORPSES earlier this year, WRONG TURN is clearly and obviously inspired by Tobe Hooper's legendary mind-bending headtrip THE TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE.
Writer Alan B. McElroy (that's the guy who wrote BALLISTIC: ECKS VS. SEVER, folks) returns with a far, better movie that his most recent attempt at a film. The plot is pretty much recycled, and the "cannibalistic inbred" guys are cliched. In fact, WRONG TURN has cliches up the ass, and that's what is good about it. The plot is traditional. And best of all, it is simple. People get in car accident, creepy guys start killing them. Genious!
The main goal of horror movies nowadays is to try to do something that people haven't seen before and to try to make them scared for once. WRONG TURN tries to give the people something we haven't seen a million times over. It is very hard nowadays to make a horror film plot without making it so complicated that most audience members won't even be able to follow along. GHOST SHIP was a great film. But, the plot was twisting consistantly and some people couldn't follow. Same with RESIDENT EVIL which was even more complicated.
WRONG TURN has a feel to it about the woods. The woods make the film more creepy. This is obviously a feature that THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT inspired. The trees and the forest at night will scare the hell out of you. Yes, it would. But, WRONG TURN doesn't totally complete the feat of scaring people. WRONG TURN had suspense, but it wasn't enough to make you jump when the actual shock came. Maybe once. But, other than that, the film doesn't have the best of pacing.
The film even sometimes drags, but not for very long. The cast is very good looking. Desmond Harrington gets a taste for horror after GHOST SHIP and he starting to work his way up. There even a few hotties in here and Alan B. McElroy even throws in a stoner couple (the stoner girl is totally hott). The only thing that is starting to worry me is that the last times I went in to see a horror movie (before WRONG TURN, it was the great whodunit IDENTITY) in both the thaeters for IDENTITY and WRONG TURN, there were old people everywhere.....
WRONG TURN: 4/5.
Halloween: Resurrection (2002)
I am guilty.
There might be **SPOILERS** in this review.
I have seen every film in the series and I still feel that the original HALLOWEEN was a very great horror film. Of course, the only reason it is held in such high regard is because it was a novelty. Nowadays, if a film like this comes out, it is filled with "cliches".
HALLOWEEN: RESURRECTION has a bad opening. The beginning sequence and explanation as to how Michael Meyers survived it totally rediculous and is not very far from the dumbest thing I have ever heard in a movie. Jamie Lee Curtis who supposedly liked the script looks like she is high on drugs during her scenes and her acting abilities look like they worsen with age. The beginning is just bad, bad, bad, bad.
The story is very good, on the other hand. I like the whole concept and the characters are very likeable. The credit sequence notes a "special appearance by Sean Patrick Thomas". Well, I don't see what's so damn special about his role. He is a main character like everyone else and there is nothing special about his appearance in the film. Busta Rhymes tries his best to be very 'action hero' and screams things like "trick or treat motherf***a!" and "happy f***in' halloween" and he runs around like he is a complete badass. I like it. A lot of his scenes were funny.
Other cast members are potentially there just to die. Whenever you think someone is going to die, their either die now or they survive that situation, move on and get killed a few minutes later. HALLOWEEN: RESURRECTION packs on a lot of those kind of scenes. Daisy McCrackin, Luke Kirby, and Katee Sackhoff take some of the better roles as some of the more diverse characters in this mess.
I must admit, I liked this movie to a degree. The film is very, very, very, very cliched and keeps the story simple and traditional. It is just not a good movie. I liked it. HALLOWEEN: RESURRECTION gets 3/5.
-This is evolution: the monkey, the man, and then the gun.
Catch Me If You Can (2002)
Veteran actors Tom Hanks (who at about the same time was starring in ROAD TO PERDITION), pretty boy Leonardo DiCaprio (who was also starring in GANGS OF NEW YORK at about the same time), and director Steven Spielberg, just barely recovering from MINORITY REPORT all managed to put out CATCH ME IF YOU CAN.
I avoided seeing this in theaters because it didn't look like something I would like, but while watching the trailers for ROAD TO PERDITION, I saw a preview for this film. "That does look kind of interesting," I told myself. I rented it and I must say that I found it to be very entertaining.
Leonardo DiCaprio must be coming out of his "little boy" stage of life or something because he is becoming more mature now and isn't redoing another overacted TITANIC performance. Tom Hanks seems to have a great time here, especially after ROAD TO PERDITION was praised by critics.
What is most hard to believe is the message before the film begins and on the front cover. 'Based on a true story'. You wouldn't think a story so amazing and nearly unbelivable would be true. (It is true, by the way).
Overall, I enjoyed this movie to a high degree. I didn't think I would, man was I wrong. Even though the film runs a little long and was slow in some parts, I think the fast-moving sequences were enough to make up for those few scenes. CATCH ME IF YOU CAN: 5/5.
Reign of Fire (2002)
One of the slowest in the genre...
Released almost back-to-back with EIGHT LEGGED FREAKS, this film just seems to not be able to handle the pressure of being an action-adventure movie. Christian Bale just looks tired here and he doesn't even seem to have the least amount of enthusiasm. Izabella Scorupco is only in the film for the purpose of having a woman in the film (because there just *has* to be a woman in these kind of movies). Most of the film moves along at a turtle's pace and is not very exciting at all.
But...the story is well-developed I must say. The writers seem to have thought their ideas through more than some writers. The dragon designs are also better than they have been in past films (like DRAGONHEART, for example). Like EIGHT LEGGED FREAKS, the action sequences are somewhat intense, but they just seem tired. Like the writers were half-asleep when they wrote those scenes. What happened to good old intense action sequences? Like JURASSIC PARK III. That movie was loaded with them. REIGN OF FIRE seems to be trying to compete with that movie almost because the creature animation seems similar. But of course, JURASSIC PARK III was far better.
Either way, the film is a fun time if you just turn your brain off before you start watching it. The ending was what I enjoyed the most.
REIGN OF FIRE: 3/5 (average).
Liar Liar (1997)
Good. That's it.
Another one of Jim Carrey's more recent works, LIAR LIAR wasn't as popular as some of his other early films, but this is a lot better than some of those.
He keeps his trademark comic voice-variations, and juvenile crude humor which makes most parents not want their little kids to see it. Hey, it's just a movie!! Of course, I do know a little eleven-year old who knows literally every single word to this film! It's not even funny. I've seen this movie many times over and I recently watched it with him. He spoke every damn line of the film out...it was annoying!!!
Anyway...if you liked this film, I recommend you see some of Carrey's other films that came after this one. ME, MYSELF & IRENE and THE GRINCH are probably good choices. BRUCE ALMIGHTY is another movie that seems like it would be a good recommendation. Either way, LIAR LIAR is one of Carrey's better works. He is just a naturally goofy guy, which in my opinion makes him a better character actor than Adam Sandler. See this movie. LIAR LIAR: 4/5.
Jackass: The Movie (2002)
SHHEEEOWWWW!!!! (There will be many a **SPOILER** in this review)
Jackass Johnny Knoxville and his crew run around performing "stunts" so they can get a movie put into theaters.
This film is quite original if people actually thought about it, but then again, some of the stunts performed here are just not funny. There were several stunts where me and my friends laughed hard, but then there were segments which were obviously staged and were just not funny. Just because they had a few beers and then decided to do something dumb, doesn't mean that it was funny and doesn't mean it should have been included in the film.
The film actually has a surprisingly short running time, somewhere around 87 minutes or something. Some of their ideas were very creative (like the car up the ass, that was brilliance) but then some of the stunts ranged from the unfunny (the rocket boots or whatever) to the psychotic (the golf cart rally thingy...that was cool).
Luckily, none of these jackasses died or got seriously injured during the making of this film. Well, not too seriously. Johnny Knoxville is looking a little nervous when he is about to be shot in a gut-pad by a really strong-ass gun. Steve-O also gets a little nervous about sticking the little toy car up his rectum.
Me and my friends had to stop this movie for about twenty minutes and go into the basement because the town tornado sirens started going off and it was raining like hell out. After about ten minutes, one of my friends decided to go upstairs and finish JACKASS: THE MOVIE without me and my other friends. So, the tornado sirens are going off, we're all hiding in the basement and my other jackass friend is upstairs finishing the movie without us. So, we went up and finished it. The alarms went off a few minutes later, so we were safe, but I missed about five minutes of JACKASS: THE MOVIE. My friend told us we didn't miss much. The movie wholly original, but stays clean with other "reality" shows that most people claim "are filled with sin". Yeah, right. I recommend you see THE REAL CANCUN. Again, these are certainly not the greatest movies ever made (hell, they don't even come close) but at least they are entertaining.
JACKASS: THE MOVIE gets 3/5.
-Don't try this at home.
Tuck Everlasting (2002)
This is highly recommended.
Like many other people on this website, I myself had to read the novel upon which this film is based when I was in the sixth grade. I really can't remember it that much, but seeing the movie brought some of it back to me.
The movie strays from Babitt's novel in some ways, as the "love" between two central characters is romanticized slightly. Otherwise, the story is not changed all that much, but there are still a few minor changes to the story that I could remember.
Most of the cast was perfect. Ben Kingsley fits the role of The Man in the Yellow Suit pretty well. Out of place kinda are Sissy Spacek and William Hurt who have the minority roles in this film. They were still quite good, though.
The story flows nicely, but there were still a few scenes that were different as I had envisioned. I pictured the Treegap Constable having a bigger role, and I also envisioned there to be more 19th century costume and prop designs. Just some things to be kept in mind when the next remake of this novel comes out in another thirty years or so.
TUCK EVERLASTING: 4/5.
I thought this was creepy as hell.
Many people have been criticizing this film for mainly being a complete rip-off of THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT (which is one of my favorite movies). Well, since the directors of THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT decided to sell their movie off as a "real documentary" it appears that the directors/writers/producers of THE ST. FRANCISVILLE EXPERIMENT decided to do the same. Well, the whole thing seems kind of real until the ending, when the film makes itself seem really fake.
The movie slowly develops the story and the characters are not cliched very much (except for the stupid psychic woman who got really super-annoying after a short while). Personally, I enjoyed this movie to a high degree. The back story was well developed and even though it is obviously a Blair Witch inspired tale, it tries very hard not to let this show. And it doesn't. It's just that we all can clearly tell because we knew what THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT was all about.
Like I have said, I really enjoyed this film, but frankly- it scared me half to death. THE ST. FRANCISVILLE EXPERIMENT: 5/5.