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3/10
Is It Just Me?
5 August 2005
Warning: Spoilers
This movie didn't make a great amount of sense. No really. It didn't. You didn't understand the enemy. You didn't understand the sorceress witchy lady. None of it. I loved Pitch Black, but this was like the unwanted red-headed step-child of movie sequels. Vin didn't seem to need a terrible amount of acting skill for this role. "Please talk like the governor of California for the entire film please, Mr. Diesel. We'll handle the rest." I'm sure the conversation went something like that when this was in negotiation. It was sci-fi, but without any purpose or explanation as to why things worked as they did in this world. You have Dame Dench disappearing, but what exactly is her people? Her story? The movie behaved like Star Wars by creating characters from outer space, but refused to explain why they could do the things they do. Why they were even apart of the major storyline. Thandie was alright, but what much else could she do besides attempt to walk around in that skintight dress? I'm at a loss for the whole mythology behind everyone worshiping this weird dead war god type thing. I love Karl Urban, ever since the days of Xena (I watch all alum), but his great acting was unnecessary in this film, because his motivations made no sense. He was confusing in an already confusing movie. Then, the two characters you recognize for Pitch Black are killed off. Umm...aren't they kinda necessary to maintaining a fan base? They're the only ones we know and understand! The movie was like a walking and talking plothole disaster. It's barely watchable.
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Pitch Black (2000)
6/10
Could Work
5 August 2005
Warning: Spoilers
I liked this film. You knew most of the people were gonna die, so you went with it wanting to find out how. It was your typical strangers encounter strange planet and find out that they've arrived at exactly at the celestial time that the planet's insane night time creatures come to attack for a spell. How predictable. Riddick is only helpful to the storyline, as he can see in the dark, as the creatures can. The most amusing point is finding out the boy was really a girl based on her menstrual cycle as a target.

The acting was really good, but you were faced with the typical range of interstellar crew mates. The indecisive, yet resilient captain. The religious dude. The cop who's carrying a psycho, but doesn't do a good job as said psycho becomes loosed. The idiot who thinks everywhere in Paris in the springtime. Etc, etc. The same inane characters exist within all films of this genre. Pitch Black emerges in a different sense because it utilizes a murdering ex-convict as it's antihero and savior of the film. He has loyalties to no one and would like to help the creatures if he could, but manages to yell a monotone "Keep up" as his way of helping. Naturally, he doesn't help at all, but offers some strange sense of comfort for leading the way.

The creatures weren't all that scary. They even bled blue blood. How's that going really raise hair on our arms? It was like watching Nickolodeon's Double Dare with all the blue goo from dead creatures, not a serious "I gotta get the heck off this planet cuz these things will kill me" feel. The movie's saving grace is Riddick, because you want everyone to die anyway, as you're thoroughly annoyed with them in the first 1/2 hour of the film. He feels the same way you do and isn't afraid to show it. His questioning of God is warranted, but the holy man is merely a plot device for Riddick to tell God that he's not altogether pleased with him in truck driver language. It's watchable because Riddick is watchable. The movie fails in itself without hm and that's why he got a sequel. Maybe that's why they killed off the other characters in "Chronicles". We just want Riddick and more of him.
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10/10
How Hot Was This?
5 August 2005
Warning: Spoilers
This is seriously a beautiful and stunning movie. Chinese directors should really give lessons to American film makers on how to construct such engaging cinematography and plot lines. The movie had everything you needed. I didn't mind in the least that it required subtitles. Hell, I watch English movies with captions just because actors tend to not enunciate or the sound director isn't altogether capable. But I digress.

The movie works as a kind of story within a story. There are many layers that get revealed as the journey goes on. Zhang stars as a blind exotic dancer/martial artist who is led by a handsome costar, back to her people, who seek to destroy the corrupt government of the time. The two progress from barely tolerant to an all-encompassing love for the other as they save each other's lives time and again as they try to return to her people. He is a charming and flirty man's man who brings the challenge upon himself to woo a strong, blind woman, but becomes less task-oriented when he actually learns about her. She, in turn, lets her defenses down as she discovers that he is "her wind". They have remarkable chemistry, as they are playful and passionate in their youth and sexual tension.

It's truly a suspense, romance, and action film that looks like a water painting or ballet to watch. The fight scenes are seamed and tailored, and gorgeous to view. Both utilized such grace and style that you wanted to fight with such nonchalance. As easy as walking. I admired that it wasn't too "Crouching Tiger" in its presentation. I found that movie a little too much with them walking or flying across trees. This movie made it a little more believable by executing moves with such force and slight of hand, that it quelled the suspension of disbelief. The acting was top-notch and on par throughout the film. They were a lovable and enticing cast. In particular, you wanted to know more about Mei and her guide and you wanted them to fall for each other. The intrigue mounts as the story develops the true nature of Mei's capture and her position within her people. Her lover is left to question the very sincerity of their relationship as more plot-thickenings emerge.

I highly recommend this film to all. Don't be afraid of the subtitles. The Chinese film industry is really on a whole other level of film making than America. It's poetic with every shot and reminds you of old medieval tales in its unfolding. It is seriously a great and grand film. The fight scenes were excellent. Especially the scene of Mei mimicking the sounds on the gourds as a dance. It was sexy and delicate at the same time. The way the fabric of her clothing moved was visually stunning and breathtaking. I could immediately see this film taking place in North Africa, particularly Morocco, with black actors in the roles. The cultures seemed so similar, that's why I could envision it. Hey, it could work. Let's think about it America...lol. It was earthy, yet divine and lofty. I don't know how else to describe it. A beautiful movie by all my standards.
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8/10
Great Stuff Right Here
4 August 2005
Warning: Spoilers
How great was this movie? I loved it. The ensemble cast was the right choice. You felt as if you were watching an old group of friends, they vibed so well. I thought Norton was a badly cast choice for his role, but qué sera. There "mos def" was some other talent that coulda been used for that role. Seth Green's obsession with being called "Napster" was highly amusing. He lucked out. The fake one got shut down, lol. Charlize still felt like an outsider and her ending up with Mark just seemed like a last minute choice or an obvious choice, because they're the pretty people of the film. They had no chemistry whatsoever and them getting together was like, "Ok...I guess...". I like movies like this because it feeds into certain sociological theories like functionalism: everybody has a role. Movies like this are usually good, unless badly cast, because everyone gets a good amount of screen time because they're needed for the overall result. Jason Statham, hot as ever, was charming and smooth as Handsome Rob. Gotta love this cat. Mos Def really held it down as Left Ear. You could buy that he knew his way around explosives. Humans fascination with fire...lol. The action was a good pace. Made you want to be in the film and apart of the gang. The cinematography was rather lush for an action film, especially in Italy. Venice is a gorgeous city. It was a lot of clean shots that I really liked. Great film because of the energy and chemistry of the actors, save some minor mishaps. Great watch!
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3/10
Why this Team?
4 August 2005
Warning: Spoilers
I'm at a loss. This entire movie made absolutely no sense. It was like watching a Soderburg film for football. The camera cutting, the pace, all so copied. I thought the subject was too not serious for them to treat it like it was. Yes, we all know Southerners like football and beauty pageants. Must we be inundated with it as an audience? I watched because of Lee and Jay. I was expecting young talent assembled in the style of Dead Poet's Society or similar to Remember the Titans. I was completely put off by the film. You didn't get the characters. It was character driven, but you didn't understand anyone's motivations or their actions for the most part. The one kid who's mom is obsessed with him being a football player. Why is he so silent? What's his deal? Did we really need the scene with him "proving" his heterosexuality? Why should we care? The movie gave us insights into these kids lives, and offered no pay-off for caring. It just made no sense.

And why show a movie about a team that lost? I know it's real life, but who makes movies about losers? Give us some pay-off for these guys working as hard as they did with all their "conceivable" problems, darnit. We got nothing. We got a little blip at the end of the film telling us that Mojo won the next year with the 3rd stringer (Lee). Why didn't you follow that story? What were we to get out of this one? The movie led you along, but didn't lead you anywhere. I just felt like something was missing. It felt like a bad genetic cross between Varsity Blues and Remember the Titans. At least those two movies led you somewhere. Friday Night Lights was about a loser team that lost their star player early in the movie. The actor who played him was great. You were completely annoyed by him, which was the point, but at least you understood why. They made sure you understood him, but he couldn't play, so why make sure we get his issues?

And the other team in the play-offs...are we to believe those are high school teens? Those men looked like college seniors or professional player in their 30s. Who were they trying to kid? I know the other team was to look intimidating, but that was crossing the line a little. I liked the gritty element of them negotiating with the black team, but again, how did this fit into the overall theme of the film. Nothing pieced together. The characters knew more about each other than we did, and that settles weird with me. Jay's characters had absolutely nothing to add, but he was showcased. It was all just a mess. Not worth a movie ticket or a rental fee.
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3/10
Golden Silence
4 August 2005
Warning: Spoilers
For playing a chick who didn't have much to say, Scarlett nailed it. If you wanna watch and follow someone on screen who doesn't do much, that's pretty amazing. She's enchanting on screen. Quickly becoming one of my fave actresses. I admire her acting style and hope to adapt some of it to my own. Some find her a bit too quiet and mute to find any potential in her, but that's precisely why I like her. You find her quiet presence refreshing and real. Chattiness is not a familiar trait in most human relations, so why behave as if it is? The movie was slow and boring for most of its length, but you watched for Scarlett. Cillian Murphy was burgeoning himself, but you didn't care if he was there or not. Colin Firth was not the choice I would've made, and the fact that he wasn't first choice showed. You just didn't want to pay attention to him, even though he was the male lead. That's pretty sad. Griet's blossoming relationship with Cillian's character was OK, but the lovemaking seemed out of place for what parts of the relationship you saw. It just seemed as if she couldn't have Vermeer, so she settled for this cat as some kind of replacement. I just didn't get the scene. Perhaps if Scarlett fleshed out the silent nature of her character a bit more, I would have understood the need for the sex scene. It was greatly executed by the way. Illicit, intense, and passionate, yet at the same time, seemed a mere fling. A great paradox for a simple scene. I don't recommend the film based on its plot, but for the nuances of Scarlett's acting and the gorgeous camera work.
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Monster (2003)
5/10
Gritty and Disturbing
4 August 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Charlize did an amazing job of transforming herself into this woman. You didn't see Charlize anymore. You saw this ill-treated and disturbed woman trying to make sense of the life that she's led. You can really see how abusing children can lead to traumatized and dangerous adults. You almost understood her deranged logic for killing johns, but you knew she had to go down, because you already knew the story. I felt sorry for her because it seemed like the woman didn't have a chance. Life just dealt her blow after blow, so it's like, who wouldn't make the choices she did? Was she really a monster? She seemed more like a woman without a childhood or a sense of living beyond herself. Yea, she spoke about wanting to be famous and more than her pitiful beginnings, but she never elevated herself to those lofty ideals. She kept thinking that life owed her something, and let's face it, life doesn't work that way. It appeared to me that that was her tragic flaw: her expectations.

Ricci's adaptation of Selby irked me to no end. Why was she acting like some meek child throughout the whole film? She's usually praised as the "Indie Movie Princess", but I found her severely lacking in this film. I was shocked to find that she would continue the entire movie like a 4-yr old child. You never sensed her confusion with defining her sexuality with her Christianity. She was an odd choice to the depth and intensity of Charlize's Aileen. You just felt like Ricci was skipping through her lines waiting to hit the catered food table when the director yelled "Cut!". I was really surprised, because I would hate to think that her acting as Wednesday was better than her in this. She was like 11 when she did that. You think she'd have matured in her acting range.

The movie was deep and gritty. It was truly a great movie for Charlize that was worthy of the Oscar. I'd hate to think actresses have to play seedier elements of femininity to win Oscars, but it's a small step.
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7/10
Hot Film
4 August 2005
Warning: Spoilers
This film had such a crazy energy. I loved it! Statham has a wonderful and clean fighting style that I've come to admire. Yes, I actually check out fighting styles in action/martial arts films. I like to see that the actor is making up an individual fighting style that suits their character. His fighting was as clean, smooth, and edgy as his driving. I wanted to be in the car with him. A movie's good when you wanna be in it. I was a little put off by the ending being about the Asian slave trade. It was resolved rather blandly and haphazardly. All of a sudden, there's a mass of Asian slaves coming out at the end. You didn't find out anything til the end, and you were still kinda confused. They should have explained things a little earlier and a lot more clearly. As an action film, however, it pumps you up. The music they used was really hot and had you bumping and feeling like he'd be a cool dude to chill with. As a storyline issue, you weren't sure if he was French or from somewhere else and living in France. You just wanted to know more about him so you'd have a stronger basis for rooting for him. All you know is that he can fight, drive, and catch the ladies. He's a French Bond? He's clearly more than that, so they should've fleshed Frank out a little more. I know it's an action film, but Jason's worth the effort :). Truly a good film to get into. Statham better keep up the good work.
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9/10
Liked it Best
4 August 2005
I've watched all three Blades, and really liked this one because it was edgier. I understand the one comment about siphoning off all of Blade's humor and fight scenes to Ryan and Jessica, but he's always had help. In the first film, it was the black chica. In the second, Leonor Varela. And Whistler's always been there as a backup. I found this movie better in terms of the technological advancements, the music, the dress, the lines, the action. Blade still got to kick Drake's butt in the end, so that was the important element of the film.

Jessica's character was so poorly developed, I'm not sure who she was. Was she a warrior poet? She was so unnecessarily sensitive, it just made you go "Huh?". Blade was a little more quiet in this one, but he's pretty monotone anyway. You can't spark much conversation with the guy. I loved the look of the new vamps. Parker Posey amused me and she did an excellent job with her character. Ryan was the amusing sidekick and added an element of, "Please, it's just a movie" for all those hardcore fans.

The first Blade was such a pre-cursor to the Matrix, it's not funny. It should continue to lead the path for excellent fighting scenes with it's smooth camera work. The second Blade was a little more boring, but you could watch it. I was a little put off when I found out Blade had to fight Dracula in the 3rd installment. Don't all vamp films end up with everyone fighting this guy? I mean, let him rest, wherever the he** he is (that's probably precisely where he is). But, Blade Trinity handled it well and in a poetic way. Can't say the same for Buffy when she had to fight him. What a poorly executed episode. Anyways, the movie is extremely watchable and fun to get into. It doesn't take itself too seriously and that's what makes it the best Blade so far. The feel of the film seems flawless, despite the numerous goofs technically. Any action film that makes me wanna get ripped and start carrying old school weaponry is a good movie!
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The Notebook (2004)
10/10
Love, Love, Love This Movie
3 August 2005
Warning: Spoilers
This movie was beyond beautiful. The entire plot was just magical, sweet, and tender. I own the movie and it has become one of my favorite films. I enjoy the great love the characters have for each other. I work in a nursing home, so seeing that kind of affection from old school folks really does exist. It's warm to see that kind of love outlast some of the turmoil and cruelty life throws your way. It's so hurtful to watch the person you love and adore not remember you little by little. They forget the life you've shared. Alternately, Allie's depression and turmoil that she's forgetting the one thing that's been a constant in her life. The older characters played their parts to a T. You sensed the deep love and loyalty he had to his wife's well-being.

Ryan and Rachel were adorable together. I can't imagine anyone else in their parts, but I'm sure it could be doable with other actors. These two just had great chemistry like a real relationship. When I say that, I mean, you could see yourself in a relationship like their's. It reminded me a lot of my own relationship with a significant other. Two people come into each other's lives and profoundly affect the other so that nothing can really break that bond. Not years of separation or misunderstanding. That love really does exist, and this movie visualized it for us.

I liked the singularity of Noah's character. He has one parent, one best friend, and one girlfriend. His world is very closed, and Ryan hit upon that well. As Allie, Rachel played her as a likable young girl. Not some spoiled rich chick with no understanding of life. Rachel understood Allie's confusion to play by the rules, but it was different in that she truly loved him. It wasn't some arbitrary set-up by elitist parents. Lon was very deserving of her love. James Marsden has really grown as an actor as well by being in this movie. I look forward to greater things (no more "Disturbing Behavior" films please :D). Beautiful cinematography. Beautiful acting. Beautiful music. It was a love story that was on par with "Love Story" and other greats. Truly recommend.
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8/10
Really Well-Planned
3 August 2005
Warning: Spoilers
This movie really hid a lot of its good points. They really didn't advertise Will Ferrell in this film, and he was hilarious in a sad pathetic way. You wondered what dumb girl fell for him, but you just went with it and whispered to yourself, the heffa deserved it if she could fall that loser. More to the point, the film just didn't seem that funny from the trailers. I was begged to see it and walked out laughing and more determined to create a site with memorable lines from films I've seen. Wilson and Vaughn have a great chemistry that can't be denied. You just didn't see a lot of the humorous moments coming, which is important in a funny film. Everyone played their parts extremely well, but I'm confused about Jane Seymour's "Touch them and see if they're real" moment. I thought that was going to be explained, but it never was. It never even came up again and you just wondered, why did we just see that? Awkward...

The guy who played the "homo" brother, according to granny, was just weird, lol. He had his face and posture in a perpetual seizure as if epilepsy was a part of his life. I didn't think it was necessary for him to stand out, but you noticed him a little more. The over-competitiveness of that reject boyfriend and the rest of the psycho-Brady Bunch was another humorous note. It was like watching an illegal American Eagle commercial with the light colored plaids and solid stripes. I felt lost and wondering what the hell was going on? Rachel just didn't sell me. The hair color was just wrong for her first off. It looked like a wig, but you knew it was her hair. I would recommend a black hairstylist. We know how to blend baby girl. However, beyond that, I felt that she was playing a character very much similar to the one she played in "The Notebook" as Allison Hamilton. It was just a more modern time. You don't get the appeal about her for Owen and she's not doing anything different than she did in that movie. She's the rich girl who doesn't quite like her lifestyle, so is amused by us lesser mortals. And why the over-exaggerated sense of her community involvement? Come on. Who in college still knows non-profit organizations like Greek-letter ones? Her character just didn't make any sense, but you could tell they just had to make her "different". No, she was as eccentric as that mad-cap family.

The period where Owen plunges into utter despair at the loss of Claire (and the alliterative/rhyming last name was a bit over the top, just a bit!) was like, huh? I thought this film was supposed to be funny. It was unneeded and unsightly. We could've gotten the point with him walking around looking longingly at other couples. It made the film longer and took it on an awkward turn toward melodrama and sincerity. All in all, the film was funny. It's really sad if people do this. I kept wondering throughout the initial segments of the film where it showed their wedding crashing montages if they'd try a black wedding. I didn't think their ruse would play out too well there. But, I wanted them to try just for the amusement factor of them being disassembled before being thrown out. Oh, we don't play with that kinda wedding crasher nonsense, lol. Do take a gander at the film. It was surprisingly funny and charming.
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10/10
Sexy and Surprisingly Good
3 August 2005
Warning: Spoilers
I really liked this movie. Their chemistry reminds you of old Hollywood couples who did a certain amount of movies together: Hepburn and Tracy, Bacall and Bogart...they were sexy together. It looks like they had fun as well, and that's an important element to any film. To look like you enjoyed doing it, because it breaks down the 4th wall for the audience. Granted, there were a lot of rumors swirling around these two, they managed to keep professional and make a kick-a$$ movie.

The premise immediately took me, and when you found out who was in it, you were excited. That's how movies should operate. I could not see Nicole playing this part. She's just not sexy enough and you wouldn't buy that she and Brad were married. I can see how Will Smith could play John, but he'd really need an actress to bring on that crazy energy and chemistry the roles require. The chemistry was important, because you had to buy that despite how much they want to follow orders, part of their attraction was real, as was their love. Jolie and Pitt played that well.

Ange could've been more strong and forceful in her role. I thought she played Jane waaaay too subdued. I understand she was playing the part of a controlled suburban housewife, but let's face it, they're more nagging and annoying than that! :) (Smile please!) I get that Jane was the cautious and controlled character, but she could have put more behind her. Really pumped her up and fleshed out her character so that she was believable as an assassin who's killed 312 people. I guess the whole point was that you shouldn't believe it, but we as the audience already knew, so just go with it. She could've let herself go more with the role other than just the sex scene. Pitt was charming as John, but his comedic delivery was a little off at certain points. He needs more practice. It's like he expects you to think he's funny because he's saying it. It's not enough. It wasn't a major emphasis of the film to be funny I think, but it warranted doing it properly. For the most part, he was amusing because he didn't seem to get that he was being amusing.

I did notice some of the technical mistakes, but it goes with the territory. Fire the script editor or something. We don't care that much. *SPOILER* When they were in the elevator waiting to shoot off the enemy in the Home Made store and the Muzak was playing, it was hilarious. Them just bopping their heads as they're about to blow some tails. Utterly amusing. Supporting actors were wonderful. Who doesn't love Vince Vaugh? Typecasting could be a wonderful thing with Vince in the driver's seat. Had some great deliveries. The action was great, the acting, the humor, and the romantic moments (if you could deign to call them that, lol). I really liked this film. Worthy of becoming apart of my collection :).
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Lucky Chances (1990– )
5/10
Decent Film
20 February 2005
As usual, the movie is nothing like the book. I really enjoyed the book, because you became invested in the characters. However, I did the process backwards: I saw the movie before I saw the film and liked the film. I saw it at a fairly young age, but I still liked it. Vincent Irizarry was on my mother's soap, so we had to see anything he was in. Nicolette was not the right person for Lucky I think. And Sandra Bullock as Maria? The entire purpose of the character was not what Bullock represented, but it's how I first fell in love with her and remember her to this day. However, she wasn't right for the part either. The movie was fair enough, but you could tell that NBC wasn't ready to deal with Dario's homosexuality and real mob violence. It almost had the moral appeal of an after school special. The movie should of took itself more seriously. I liked the movie, but after reading the book, the actors were all wrong for the characters.
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7/10
Something to Chew On
24 January 2005
Warning: Spoilers
I really liked this movie. I like when skeletons are brought out of the closet. I do think the movie tried to squeeze too much into a small amount of time, but it did it's best. I would've liked to see more on Sally's relationship with her children instead of these sides references to them when they grew up. I mean, that's what all the hoopla was about wasn't it? The fact that the kids are Jeffersons? I'm sure these kids had some issues with dark-skinned slaves and wanted to know why they were slaves when they were pretty much as white as the owners. I think issues like that could've and should've been addressed more.

Carmen Ejogo blew me away as Sally. She's simply stunning on screen. I appreciated the fact that she studied the accents of the South during that time. It wasn't full-fledged southern twang, but a mix of various tones, since the country was still in its early inception stages. I appreciated Mare's portrayal of Jefferson's daughter who's obsessed with protecting his legacy, even when he doesn't seem too preoccupied with it. It sounds very much like his white descendants today. They aren't able to fully grasp that this man was human. The reigning social habit of the day was to take black concubines who were their slaves. It's horrible to us, but it was natural to them.

It's a little unsettling that the relationship is played so much as this Harlequinn romance novel when many similar situations were hardly that. Rape was common in these types of relationships, whether by brute force or seduction. I'm loathe to think that Sally, being only 15 or so at the time she started her relationship with Jefferon, was simply going to lie down like that and understand a loving, committed relationship. On the other hand, she was aware of her family's history of women becoming their master's concubines. Maybe she understood life at that age a lot better than most of us in our age of modernity can understand now. Their relationship touches on many levels, and the movie left you wondering. It was a nice touch, because we don't know what happened at all.

I'm big on black people getting what's theirs, and I think this story is a great example of people having a right to something. You may not like the relationship, but it happened and they're here, so give them what's theirs. America's habit of utterly dismissing the claims of blacks because we have oral histories instead of written ones, just irks me to no end. (Like someone can't write a lie) The slaves knew what was going on, so they aren't in the habit of lying about it. That kind of thing was usually done by the masters and their families to cover up their fascination with power. The movie was a little light considering the severity of the place and time, but it was still a good film. The scene where Sally's baby dies and her niece, Martha, simply dismisses her with a curt "I'm sorry" was wonderfully done. The woman had given birth to the president's child and lost it. If it was Jefferson's late wife, it would've been something completely different. And the child would've been buried in the family cemetery to boot. That's the legacy of slavery. I'm sure there were historical inaccuracies, but one comes to expect this with Hollywood portrayals.
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8/10
Na-Na?
23 January 2005
I liked this movie. I really did. Someone very close to me has a mother very much like this. It's reality folks, not everyone has a sensible loving mother that grasps the role of "motherhood" like a duck to water. Some people remain stuck in a selfish state where they blame everyone/thing else for all their unhappiness and the misdirection of their lives. I'm glad there's a movie that brought that subject to light. One user said the movie is celebrating an alcoholic, but that's untrue. You're watching a woman go further and further into a downward spiral of self-pitying despair and hatred for the events of her life. I also didn't find Vivi's mother to be evil, but she seemed to have been desperately trying to claim her role as a respectable wife. When your husband treats horses better than you, you get a little miffed. He dismissed her as his partner in life for a child she gave him, so the woman aimed her frustrations at her child, instead of her husband. At that time, what could she have really done to the husband? He would've beaten her most likely. I appreciated the fact that Vivi was flawed. Just humanly flawed and admitted it. It sucks that people have parents like this, but Sidda learned to deal with it in her own way. I'm glad it wasn't a typical reaction, like drugs or promiscuity. She just accepted her mother for what she is: flawed and screwed up. Motherhood doesn't make you unselfish and well-versed in letting go of your troubles. That's something you learn over time, and the movie showed that. It might take 40-odd years as it did them, or someone could get it the moment the child is born. What I got from the film is that your parents had dreams and nightmares before you came into the picture, and it takes a lot out of them to come to terms with being responsible for a life that they may or may not be ready for. I also really loved the part where Sidda begins to question her ability to be a good mother and wife. I think that resonated well. I certainly would start to wonder. Parents can screw up their kids easily I tell ya. It's not a responsibility to enter into lightly. I'm sure there were flaws like the accents of Louisiana and technical stuff, but altogether, the movie really reaches many levels.
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Ready or Not (1993–1997)
I wish I was in Canada
11 January 2005
You Canadians really have your stuff together. You show all the oldies but goodies. This YTV sounds interesting and I would love to have that channel if it means I could watch this show. I adored this show! I cannot explain how upset I was that I didn't have the premium channels back in the day and would have to wait for Disney's free preview weekend to watch this show. Canadian based teen shows are really good at hitting the nail of teen life or emerging teen life. Mess like Dawson's Creek are ridiculous compared to this show and "Higher Ground". I loved the dynamic of the 2 lead characters. They dealt with a lot of issues you wouldn't think to address, and did it without an ABC After-School Special quality about it. It was very blunt and "this is what it is", now deal quality that I liked. Laura Bertram is a tremendous actress. I remember her from a lot of childhood shows like "Are You Afraid of the Dark?" and was just wowed at my young age by her talent. I can't even remember specific episodes, but I hope they add it to the WAM! channel. Might write a letter...lol. Seriously, it was a great dramatic show about entering adolescence and the issues we have on the way. Awesome piece of work!
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Ah, it's enjoyable to an extent
11 January 2005
I liked the show. What can I say? I found the characters more like the book's than the movie ever did. I never had the delightful privilege of having Disney on my cable line-up as a child. So whenever they had a free preview weekend, I would usually hog the television to wait for this show and "Ready or Not". I own one tape of 2 episodes of this show and I know it's ridiculous and corny and all that jazz, but I still like to watch it because it reminds me of my childhood. Sure, the episodes never reflected the books, but it was just seeing the book come to life that really got you into it. I felt I knew the characters intimately, so I enjoyed seeing them in action. As the first visual rendition of the books as well, they have a special place in my heart. You can't expect the show to be Oscar-caliber. It was probably Canadian and it was Disney for goodness sakes! You can't expect much in that sense. But, as a show for growing up girl in this world, it wasn't a bad watch. If I saw it on the air, I'd watch it. Purely for the nostalgia and not the exemplary acting and mesmerizing plots.
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5/10
Loved this Movie...
11 January 2005
Warning: Spoilers
...As a preteen. I was the number one fan of the books by Ann M. Martin. I loved these characters and just the story lines. They were a great for accompanying a young girl as she was growing up. So naturally, when the movie came out, I was more than a little excited. I didn't go to the theaters much when it came out, so when it arrived on VHS, I had to beg my mom to buy it. I loved the movie, but as usual, when you're well acquainted with a book, you feel you know the characters better than the idiots making the movie. I would fire the casting director, because they obviously were just looking to fill the racial roles with no thought as to really getting someone close to the character.

For starters, Zelda Harris could not dance the way the character "Jessie" could in the novels. When they first introduced her, I was so pi$$ed off. I connected to Jessie's character a lot with the book because she was the only black in the group (and in the town period apart from her family) and she was the dancer. Jessie was an excellent dancer who always walked from toe to heel. It was a special dancer thing she acquired (even though I didn't and I did the same types of dance she did. an embellishment of Martin's I think), but she was serious about her technique. In the movie, they introduce Zelda with the girl just flinging her leg up into the air with a flexed foot like she has no idea what the move she did was called. I was so embarrassed for her.

The girl who played Claudia was obviously older than the rest of the girls. They barely looked the ages of 12 and 13. As I watch it as an older person, I see the youth in their faces, but it was pretty evident that these chicks were more on their way to college than high school. Beyond that, Tricia Joe probably wasn't even Korean, which Claudia was. I assuming the casting director just wanted "Asians". Like that meant anything. And Mary Ann should have had long hair, but I digress. I'm being nit-picky, but I was very invested in these characters for a long time, so I can afford to be and have the right since I have all the freakin books, lol.

I understand that when they make a movie out of the books, that it won't be EXACTLY like the book, but at least try to keep certain facets of it similar. A lot of young girls grew up with these characters, and they were the target audience. The least you could do is respect that. All in all, the movie is great for its target audience. It had the necessary forms of trouble that are believable for that age. The story of Kristy's father returning was a very mature touch and I appreciated that about the movie. These girls are at a turning point in their lives where people go to high school and change on people. They also start to deal with real-life issues that will make them do things they never thought they would. I like how the movie dealt with that. That's exactly what happens in the books. They grow apart and we can all relate to that by remembering friends we had in junior high that we didn't have in high school. It was a good story for them to enjoy the time they have before it all falls apart...how dramatic, lol.

However, I must say: I think the Disney version that came on TV was much better than the movie and more sympathetic to the novels and the way the characters looked.
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Titanic (1997)
9/10
Memorable Film
6 January 2005
This film will go down in history as just a groundbreaking film, aside from anything else. When it came out, you wanted to see it. The way they advertised it, how could you not? We're all guilty of morbid curiosity and love the irony of a ship so grand in scale and deemed "Unsinkable" to so many could actually do the unthinkable and pretty much capsize. It fascinates all of us. James Cameron did an excellent job of pulling this together. They wasted a lot of water that some 3rd world countries could have used, but still a good job. I liked the flashback idea, but it's pretty obvious the chick woulda been dead in most real life circumstances and Kate Winslet doesn't play a convincing 17 year old girl.

I liked the true ending of the ship. It actually went down in 2 pieces rather than in all one form as other versions have implied. It kinda makes this movie the definitive version in a way, because it broke the standard. The climax was for the men. To this day, all my boyfriend talks about is the guy hitting the propeller and spinning madly to his icy death. But, the love story was definitely for the women. It was a little pretentious to think that she would have followed this man in the 4 days that she knew him, but hey, that's Hollywood. Rose was a nice insert as a person in history, but it seems fairly fantastic today that this story would ever happen. Jack was a stupid twit of a man that had no prospects and we're supposed to believe that she would run away with this cat? Oooh, rich bastard who's hot or poor twit whose only appeal is that he lives under a bridge? Oh, the choices. His nomadic existence was suppose to charm us, but all I saw was a bum. And look what happened to him. He was supposed to be so used to cold water and whatnot and the boy froze like a fishstick. If I were her, I woulda went back to Cal and said, "My bad about that spitting thing".

I loved the character of Mr. Andrews. A little stupid for wanting to die with his creation, but to each his own. I can't believe that people actually wanted to go down with the ship and kept playing music and whatnot. Absolutely saddening that they were missing the big picture. Ship sinking. Need to get off. I found the music inspiring and we'll always have Celine Dion's song to drag us back to 1997: the year it wouldn't stop playing. I never really felt the terror of being on this ship though. I found that people had plenty of opportunities to get off, but they were just too damn stuck up to try anything. Only the 3rd class folks you felt sorry for. They actually tried to keep them on the boat. You felt bad for them, because they were the ones that were gonna die, because of their low station. However, I didn't have sympathy for first class folks. And where were the 2nd class people? It was like they didn't exist. I guess they weren't instrumental to the plot, but I wouldn't have minded seeing them at times.

And of course, we're all a little mad at the old lady dropping the necklace in the water. I know it's supposed to be poignant, but give it to the granddaughter or somebody. Brock should have gotten it. I felt bad for him because he was like the rabbit from the "Trix" commercials. Just let him have it for goodness sakes! He's only devoted his entire adult life to it. No, little old crackpot decides to toss it overboard. I woulda made her go in after it...anywho, good film over all. We'll all remember it when we're old as "that" film.
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Ray (I) (2004)
8/10
Kudos to Jaime Foxx
6 January 2005
Warning: Spoilers
I like to see when actors who have been in the background and scraping it to make it finally get their break. This was it for Jaime Foxx. What a performance! I doubt he'll get the Oscar, because dumb and never-watched movies except by Academy elite will win as they usually do. I see a "Finding Neverland" upset at the Oscars, but I digress. I found it very difficult to not see Ray Charles in Jaime. He was so into the part: the facial expressions, the laugh, the voice...it was all pleasantly reminiscent of the wonderful and talented musician. To this day, I'm a little confused as to how a blind man can have a heroin addiction, but hey, he wouldn't let his disability stop him from tasting any form of life I see. I just think someone had to be helping him aim the needle. I wouldn't want a nurse giving me an injection blindfolded without some guidance, you feel me? Anyways, the movie was a little long, but you got to know about someone who spent most of their life in the public eye, but never truly knowing much about them because you're too young to appreciate them or because you won't find out until they die. He was a phenomenal talent that didn't let anything stop him, and that's the miracle of life and the human spirit. I liked the angle of his mother being a guiding force in his life and the lifelong guilt he felt for his brother's death. It tied in everything he was dealing with and how he handled life, the decisions he made.

The character of his mother being so tough was heart wrenchingly realistic. She was a poor sharecropper and a single mother. She didn't have the time to beg for handouts and have "crippled" children. Her tough love really resonated to me the spirit of the black women throughout history. What some might call emasculating, I call realistic and wise. I loved the scene where he was learning to see with his ears and she just watched him as he screamed and cried for her help. He finally stood up and learned to see with his ears and could hear her proud weeping as she watched him catch a cricket and simply said, "I hear you mama. You're right here." That brought me to tears! Every actor was fit for their role in this film. The children, the musicians, the producers, the women in his life, all slipped cleanly into their parts. This is an exceptional film.
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BeastMaster (1999–2002)
Greatly Missed
6 January 2005
It was rather campy with ridiculous plots that only children would appreciate, but I do miss this show. I kept watching episodes repeat until I started to wonder why they were going back to the beginning. I finally found out that it was canceled due to production issues and not ratings. Daniel Goddard is stunning on screen, but his character seemed very much like Kevin Sorbo's Hercules rendition. They were both very sensitive, hunky, muscular males who could kick butt when it came down to it. They're also extremely monogamous and don't seem to want to move past the women they were once in love with to venture into anything new.

I found the opening credits vastly amusing. It amps it up a lot and then you're like, "Oooh! Who is this guy?" and then the announcer says quite blandly, "He's the Beastmaster. He communicates with animals." It was so anti-climatic, it was comical. That's his specialty? Talking to animals? So he's an ancient vet? Eh, I watched anyway. His sidekick was more annoying that Gabrielle in Xena. And the heavy surfer, Californian accent was a little off in this ancient environment. I loved the character of Arina and wished she and Dar would hook up, but it got canceled before old lover boy would make a move. Heck, the way he was moving, his ferrets woulda got to her before he did.

The plots were childish, as I've said, but you still watched because it was just a way to kick back and enjoy a Saturday afternoon, no stress. It didn't require heavy thinking on my part. It also might have grown into a pretty strong show that tested waters, but it didn't last. Ah, it's OK, but you feel bad for the actors. It's like they may never get another break with this show gone. I remember those episodes with the original Beastmaster and I found him terribly annoying. I'm not surprised his movies didn't work out majorly. I caught sight of one of his versions and detested him. Daniel was better. Ah, so's the TV world.
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5/10
Could it be an loooooooooooooonnnnnnnnnngggger?
6 January 2005
OK, I like the movie, but it's not like it was action-packed and the 5 hours you were sitting watching it while you're butt cramped was worth it. I mean, for goodness sakes. It dragged on and on and on. I admire the story about this guy living and learning to trust and respect the Sioux people, but the points could have been made within 20 minute frames. It was on a grand scale, but it didn't need to be. There were moments that nothing was happening and could have been cut out of the film. It's history. We know what happens to most of the Native Americans, so why drag it out? I love the story, the characters, their arcs, the plot, but it was all too long. Bravo shows it on occasion and the movie is even longer with commercial interruptions. I commend the crew on the final product visually, but it could have used with a few more editing staff.
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Queen (1993)
7/10
Wonderful Family Film
29 December 2004
Warning: Spoilers
I fell in love with this movie when it came out in 1993. You never saw many movies about slave families or just the impact of it on the survivors around that time, so my father and I delved into it. We have it on tape and I still continue to watch it. As a matter of fact, I just finished watching it, which is why I decided it was time to make a comment. Halle simply slipped into the role of an interracial woman struggling to find a place to belong. The questions of identity, what is blackness, what is whiteness are strong and well-dealt with in the film. I would encourage anyone to watch it and to take a class on Slave Life and just learn about the impact this made on the people who endured it. I like that Alex Haley was able to trace his history so far and be able to make a moving testimony to the people in his family. Not many African-Americans today or blacks in general who were displaced by slavery can do that. It's a luxury very few can afford, so it's beautiful to see on film.

There were memorable characters and everyone did a truly sound job within each role. I would have loved to play in a movie like this. It strives to encounter the meaning we place on skin color, the lives destroyed by other's prejudices and ignorance. Queen was an incredible woman that existed. Despite the horror and pain that filled her life, she managed to retain her dignity as a beautiful and resilient black woman. I like the subtext of her trying to define which race she was, but ultimately having to find solace in the very side that is most difficult to live with: the black side. She reconciled her dual racial heritages, but realized that she must live her life as a black woman to just survive. It's rather funny when you think about it. Playing "white" was dangerous at that time for a woman like her.

It speaks volumes about race conscious in America and the devastating legacy it has left for all of us. No one of mixed parentage should have to "choose" a side. That is unfair and makes the society seem ashamed of something that has been going on since the beginning of time. Everyone on this planet is mixed. There is no pure race, and slavery was an obvious moment in time when trying to purify the races (as the KKK tried to maintain in the film) was not going to work out as planned. These were people who worked side by side and endured the same sick environment. It is no wonder that they would turn to each other. Whether in violation of power or in love, this is humanity in all of its depravity and strength. "Queen" really makes you think about the state of America as it was then and what it is now...
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Dawson's Creek (1998–2003)
A real tearjerker...not!
27 December 2004
This show makes me laugh so hard. It makes me wonder what airhead idiots supported this slop of nonsense. They makes teens look inherently retarded and misinformed. Gotta love that! OK, so we have some white kids (big surprise there) with what they think are issues (another big surprise) and how they deal with it throughout the long a** time it was on the air.

We have Dawson: the horse jawed dumb*** who's hopelessly naive and simple. Pacey: witty and amusing, but hopeless and dumb and self-effacing and needs to get over himself and stop being so damned annoying and pitiful. Joey: self-righteous turned whore, turned self-righteous about being a whore, too wordy and hard to understand. Oh it must be the 75% of the words that no one uses in America because they're too LONG! Jen: Pretty much the same as Joey with blond hair and an atheist. Oh, what stories they must have to tell! Throw in some forgettable characters with more problems to mix the pot, and you have Dawson's Creek and the annoying theme song.

Leave these kinds show for the 80's and suburban kids in middle America. There are people out there with REAL problems, so let's not support the ones with fake ones. I admit, I watched it initially and was soon turned off by the what? 3rd episode? Yea, about there. It was pointless drudgery about nothing. I hate teenagers because of this show, and I'm not that far removed from being one. They're incestuous and retarded and human and I suppose. I'm bored with seeing humans with faults. Show some with integrity, now there's must see TV. This show is as stimulating as Girls Gone Wild in a room full of females and gay men. It was back and forth with the same plots. I could leave the show for a year and come back to the same plot: Joey, Dawson, and Pacey. Who will bone this week? Stay tuned for another rousing episode of "Dawson's Freaks".

I even liked the acting somewhat. Mostly on everyone's part but Dawson's. And the ending was so cliché. Dawson runs to Hollywood to make a show about them and it's running on the air forever. Please! Gimme something worthy of ruining my eyesight. Even the fake actors were pitiful. Still, the acting couldn't take away the incessant whining and "woe is me" these characters end every episode in. It's like saying you like the episode of "Three's Company" about the misunderstanding. They're all based on misunderstandings just like Dawson's Creek was based entirely on whining teens with perceived emotional distress. Thank God I never knew people like this. I would've cussed them out. And I'm glad Capeside had 1/2 black people (Joey's nephew) because they would've cussed these kids out too. And I mean kids from the same environment as these twits.

I admire the attempt at a "real" show about teens struggling for identity and whatnot, but you can't do it about a portion of the population and then attempt to speak for all teens. That's what I hate about shows like this. They're so one-sided and obviously from one point of view. Moreover, they all become like that and we're drenched with the mindless banter of nitwit teens on every channel because some teen girl in Minnesota relates. You want teen drama? Watch "Higher Ground". You want a show that everyone can relate to? Make one and stop feeding us filtered experiences from the majority group.
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1/10
Things that makes you go: What the F***?
27 December 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Throughout the entire movie, I kept thinking: Death comes in all forms. Why must it kill so violently and abnormally? Come on, a sheet of glass crushing someone to death? Electrical wires from a fence slicing you into pieces? The shower cord strangling you to death? You're alcoholic beverage leaving condensation and setting your place on fire and allowing for a butcher knife to kill you? Come on! They could've gotten cancer, heart attacks, sickle-cell anemia. I mean there are plenty of ways to die. Death is not this psycho that has to kill you violently in order to maintain its "grand" design. Now, someone might say, QueenMakeda84, there's no point to the movie if they all died like that. Exactly my point! There shouldn't have even been a movie because the way Death is presented is super-de-duper whack.

And what was with the eerie black mortician? Who really gets into it like that? I like Tony Todd too, but this is not the way to go after being on Hercules and Xena. I mean, the guy was like a Shakespearean actor in a kindergarten play. Take it down a notch. And furthermore, his character was severely unnecessary. They could've googled for all that information. He seemed more like someone from Conan than of the 20th century along with the rest of the cast. And A.J. Cook, I loved you in "Higher Ground", but you're slipping with this movie. Don't get me wrong, you played the insecure girl with freaky death premonitions well, but you're better than this. I guess times are hard. Ali didn't even seem to wanna be there and I don't blame her. I think she was just waiting to be blown to pieces at the end of the movie and was hurrying it along as much as possible to get out of this disaster of an idea.

The movie honestly tried, but it couldn't bite the cheese. Maybe it was supposed to be stupid, but for my money, I better get a moral to the story or some laughs along the way. I got neither. What I did get was the impression that I'm smarter than everyone else in the film. And that, I didn't need to pay $9 for.
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