Reviews

23 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
Desperation (2006 TV Movie)
4/10
Mediocre
17 June 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Although this film starts off relatively well, grabbing viewers' interest and setting up the situation nicely, it does not take long before the film becomes nothing more than mediocre filler for a prime-time spot; what could have--should have--been a terrifying and freaky story soon becomes an eye-roller of the most predictable sort. However, this should not have been the case. Ron Perlman's acting is superb, and he does, at first, enable the casual viewer to get slightly uncomfortable. Tom Skerrit is also excellent, although to see him play something other than "the bad guy" is something certain viewers may have difficulty getting used to. Kelly Overton, of course, is aesthetically pleasing, and the scene where she orgasms because of the demon statue is sure to give select viewers a little bit of excitement, making the film somewhat of a reward.

However, along the way something goes wrong. First, it should be said that it is not the story itself because the novel "Desperation" is aptly written by King. Essentially, the flaw in the film "Desperation" is that it was made for television; this is the downfall. "Desperation" should have been on the big screen, complete with gore and carnage and an R rating. As it stands, "Desperation" is a film that is trying to be scary while simultaneously being Conservative and mainstream and trying not to offend at the same time. Stephen King just does not belong on prime-time, not, that is, if the intention is to scare and disturb.
3 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
Terrific
16 June 2006
This is a terrific film, not so much for the concert, but the actual experience; those who saw Young play at the Cow Palace in San Fransisco, (where Rust Never Sleeps was filmed) would undoubtedly agree--the disclaimer, of course being those who could actually remember the event as something more than a drug-haze. Nevertheless, this film is fantastic because the selection of songs that Young plays are some of his finest, and these selections are both acoustic and electric.

This film also shows why it is that Crazy Horse is the band Young selects when he chooses to rock out. The band members accompany his guitar solos with triumph, giving the music a melodic and hypnotizing effect; specifically, songs like "Like a Hurricane" and "Cortez the Killer"--which are good in their own original form--get a new life in this film; the songs linger, sometimes they stray, but never in a negative way. Anyone who likes live performances, particularly live performances that take on a sort of ad-lib aspect, will not be disappointed with Rust Never Sleeps.

The acoustic selections are also very fine, highlighting Young's capacity and talent to not only entertain and soothe as an individual, but one who can do it in grand style. "Grand Style" here, of course, does not mean someone coming across as your typical rock star, (because here Young doesn't), but rather, grand style in the sense that the man is a born musician that can strike a chord in any one's soul. Highlights of the acoustic set include "Sugar Mountain" and "After the Gold Rush," as well as such Young classics as "Comes a Time" and "My My, Hey Hey." Of course, the concert would not be complete without a wicked rendition of "Hey Hey, My My" the electric counterpart to the former, and the band here accompanies Young on this track exquisitely.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
AC/DC: No Bull (1996 Video)
1/10
Poor Reproduction
16 June 2006
This concert should not have been released; as a follow up to "Live at Donington," "No Bull" is of very poor quality and does not compare to the former at all.

Basic synopsis: AC/DC on stage being filmed (most likely) with a camcorder, (early 80s at that). The reproduced sound is just awful. The saving grace of this film is that the band is playing old songs from earlier times that are never usually performed at concerts; however, sadly, these songs are marred by poor video and sound quality--what could have been great becomes something that is not. By the end of the film, something that should have been exciting and refreshing is anything but; indeed, to watch this film is a true test of patience, when trying not to turn the DVD off and put something else on instead.

Not only do I own this DVD, but I have also seen it playing at a few different pubs as well, and the crowds do not respond well. Something that is supposed to be exciting and uplifting is instead marred by poor quality to the point that even if one strains hard to listen, the songs are almost indistinguishable. Soon the DVD becomes poor quality background noise to the din of the pub-goers because the DVD cannot keep people's attention. Basically, the DVD gives a bad impression of a band that usually can blow any crowd away, live or otherwise.
4 out of 8 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
4/10
A Great Concert Continually Interrupted
16 June 2006
This movie would have been alright, indeed probably excellent, if the directors would have left the interviews and the concert footage separate. "Into the Void" is a great song, and I hate how it is cut off at the best part to go to an mumbling interview with Ozzy Osbourne. That should have been at the end of the film, or located in a special feature. The best part of concert DVDs is to put them on and let the music play, but "Black Sabbath: The Last Supper" is hard to put and and simply let play because the music is continually interrupted. Nevertheless, there are a few strengths to this film; the concert footage, when it does play, it excellent. Black Sabbath returns to the stage after a long hiatus without Osbourne and this film captures that well: Sabbath basically rocks the fans. The fans, of course, have a sweet advantage in the film because they are seeing the band live, of course, but also they do not have to put up with the incessant interviews that the DVD viewers are burdened with. Shame on Jeb Brien and Monica Hardiman (the directors) for doing this to the film! Also, shame on Wyatt Smith for editing the film in such a way.
3 out of 4 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
7/10
boring
14 July 2004
Warning: Spoilers
This film is long and drawn out and is quite challenging to watch.

It's not that it is bad--it isn't--but it is all about the liberation of a woman grieving, and so, as a viewer, you are invited (no, dragged) into the grieving process whether you want to or not. If you are already feeling blue about something, don't watch this film; although it is supposed to be an anti-tragedy, it will still depress you anyway. 7/10
1 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
1/10
boo
20 December 2003
I've waited three years for a disappointing ending. The scouring of the Shire wasn't in the film, and that was by far the most important scene in the story, with Saruman and Wormtongue. Okay, so maybe it's in the second DVD comes out, after the regular one gets bought up---but this is just a marketing scheme---the exploitation of a fine story. This proves once and for all that literary adaptations are a true rip off of the author's intent, fixed only on making large sums of money. Tolkien is no doubt rolling over in his grave. People against this argument no doubt say that, "well yes, but it brings the story to the masses!" Why not encourage them to read instead? I feel that the imagination of millions of kids is now ruined because they will never be able to read the books without having Wood in their minds as Frodo, or Astin as Sam. And the characters don't act that way in the book.

And how can we justify Jackson's liberal treatment of the story to promote CGI graphics while disregarding the characters in the film. Basically the computer is now a character.

These books should have been left alone. This isn't the best film of all time, it is the best example of exploitation that has thus far been imagined.
25 out of 62 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
1/10
like watching the weather channel.
19 December 2003
More attention should have been paid to the eyes in the blue screen sequences in the film---it is all too easy to see three distinct light bulbs reflected in the eyes. If we are to believe the actors are on the mountain, then they should not be lit as if they are in a studio.

At times I felt like I was watching a weather broadcast--you know, the ones where it is so blatantly obvious that that what is going on behind them is only a projection.

I'm sad to say that there is still a long way for CGI to go in terms of becoming believable.
4 out of 19 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
5/10
boring
13 December 2003
This movie is very boring and superficial. There isn't anything deep about it, and it gives 21st century women a bad name, essentially portraying there goals and desires as self-centered and base. Rent something else instead.
1 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
8/10
"A little bit of Duddy Kravitz in everyone"
24 November 2003
"A little bit of Duddy Kravitz in everyone," so the poster tells us. Yeah, I guess you could say that, although it is exaggerated in the film to get the message across (either that, or I haven't met anyone like that yet.) Dreyfuss' character is believable, and so is his father. I would have to say the only wooden character in the whole film is that of Lenny, Duddy's brother. There is a good message to get from the film--if you watch it, you won't be disappointed.
13 out of 13 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
7/10
not too shabby
12 November 2003
The film failed to portray the message of the book, but that does not mean it doesn't have a message--it does. Basically, freedom is valuable, however, it can easily be taken away. Though the futuristic look of the film looks dated, I have to admit that some of the things in the film look all too familiar. The television, for example, hanging from Montag's wall looks eerily like the new plasma screen tvs you see in the stores. And the hanging mono rail is now not too far fetched either. Having Montag speak with a German accent was done on purpose, but I don't know if the meaning of it has been successfully carried through time. Upon seeing the film, I thought it was stereotypical that he should be speaking like that and be associated with burning books. Then I thought of redemption, and the fact that in the film he starts to read, but I still find it stereotypical. Having to go on the other side of the tracks to get to freedom was interesting, where there is a sort of vagabond reader's circle. That too was a nice touch, and having filmed it in the fall with the leaves falling, etc, added much needed "natural" aesthetics to the film.
0 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
pretty interesting.
7 November 2003
Yeah, this film was pretty interesting as far as letting me see what really goes on behind the scenes while making a film. I guess the biggest reason why I liked it was because it wasn't so stuffy and polished--it gave the human side to film making. Tarantino and Clooney aren't represented as gods, but merely guys making a movie. I think that is very important and a big problem with films today--the human aspect of it is gone. But this documentary of the making of Dust till Dawn shows just the human side.

And it isn't centered on the main characters, but everyone, right down to the caterers. Also shows the complex side of film making, including the unions.

All together a pretty good film.
0 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
haunting
6 November 2003
I will forever be haunted by the eyeball image in the film--I just can't get that out of my head. This film's imagery really bored its way into my mind. I also appreciate that it did so while being so old. In my opinion, you don't need all the super special effects that are used in Hollywood today to get something that is cool and "real". If you need to verify this, check out Un Chien Andalou. However, although I say "real", it is a surrealist and experimental film. Keep this in mind when viewing.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
5/10
where's the people?
4 November 2003
I found that the characters weren't fleshed out enough. They were like robots. This in turn made me unable to care for them, or what was going to happen to them. I don't think I remember any memorable dialogue or character interactions in the film.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Lonely Boy (1963)
10/10
influential
31 October 2003
You can see the influence this film has had on countless other documentaries, and even feature length films, when you watch it. The jittery, being right there style that is presented in this film was very new at the time it was made, and it was good. It wasn't merely presenting the facts, but presenting them in a way that shapes how the audience will react to them.

I thought the film was really exciting, even in 2003, and it is an inspiration.
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Ararat (2002)
6/10
good and bad
27 October 2003
Upon my first viewing of this film, I generally liked it. There were some striking visuals, and the story needed to be told. However, I saw it a week later, and I didn't like it--I approached it more critically. Basically, the movie-within-the-movie takes away any emotion I would otherwise have had mustered through watching this film. As I watched and became involved, I would always be jarred into realising that I was watching a movie being made. Basically at the end of the film, I was left with the opinion of "who cares."

I have an open mind for all sorts of artistic endeavours and I usually can see what someone is trying to say. This film does say many important things that I value: freedom is good, oppression is bad, etc, but it doesn't have to be jammed down my throat until I gag and feel I must puke. To me, the plight of the individuals in the film was deadened and made superfluous by watching a movie being made about that plight. Every time you get into the story, and start to feel, some director says "cut!" and ruins your sense of the story trying to be told.

This film is too chaotic.
1 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
8/10
pretty good
26 October 2003
I liked this film because it put Rob Zombie's album covers into motion. Yes, this film is bloody, and full of gore, but it's fake. And that in return makes this film fun to watch. I especially like the homage to the classic 70's horror films. Some criticize this as being unoriginal and a rip off, but I don't think so. I feel it is a respectful thing to do, like playing a song in tribute. You take older material and put your own stamp on it, not because you are stealing it, but because you love it. This is an admirable thing for Rob Zombie to do.

Yes, it is true that some of the acting was cheesy in the film, and that at times it may have been hard to sympathize or believe the characters, but this is part of the films appeal. It's like the old drive in movies--it's fun to watch because of this. I also enjoyed how it takes place in the 70's--it added to the effect of the film. Thumbs up Mr. Zombie
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
9/10
engages the viewer...if you let it.
26 October 2003
This is a great film, if you are willing to be educated more so than entertained. There aren't any explosions, or bloody scenes, or steamy sex, or anything of that nature. There is just a story about four people.

I liked this film because it was minimalist, and you had to get everything through suggestion. Nobody comes out and says anything, it is up to the viewer to get it. The cinematography is great, with one of the best examples of the use of night and darkness to portray the film's theme. Though I am not from that generation, being born ten years after the film was made, I was able to get a picture of the underlying political and social atmosphere of that time in American History.

What a great film.
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
A great B movie
24 October 2003
This film is a B-movie, and you have to keep that in mind when you watch it. Also, it is one of the best B-movies. With Stephen King's popularity and financial situation, this film could have had an almost unlimited budget. Also, anyone could have directed this, but he chose to do it--on purpose. What you see is the way he intended the film to look like: cheesy, more funny than actually scary, lots of fake looking blood. It's destined to be a cult classic. It was intended to be that way. The only thing I was disappointed with was that the DVD did not have more special features.
4 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Perfect Pie (2002)
5/10
not a true representation of the play
23 October 2003
I found it hard to be sympathetic with the characters in this film, especially the character of Francesca/Marie. They just seemed to missing depth--I could not get into them. One of the reasons for this, I think, is that the pivotal rape scene was not filmed correctly. It appeared hackneyed while at the same time lacking drama. This scene is the basis for the entire film, especially with the flashbacks, and to have it appear lackluster and dull makes the entire film need something more. Moreover, for a dirty poor girl, Alison Pill is presented in the film as too clean and pretty. I could not connect with her in this context. This is not to say that the story isn't good. In fact, Thompson's play is quite engaging and was successful at making me feel for the characters. However, in contrast, the film was quite a disappointment. The film deviates from the original play too much and the meaning behind the story is lost.
5 out of 8 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Life of Brian (1979)
8/10
Funny
23 October 2003
I thought the film was funny, though maybe not as funny as "Holy Grail." I am not very satisfied with the DVD, however. I think more time and effort should have been put into remastering. I found that the colours were off. I also found that the outdoor scenes were excessively bright--so much so that it was difficult at times to make out what was on the screen. I also think the soundtrack could have been clarified as well. It was very difficult at times to make out what was being said. I don't think this is the fault of the movie as much as it is a lack of effort for making the DVD.
0 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
The 39 Steps (1935)
8/10
Great film, bad version
23 October 2003
I bought this film at Wal-Mart, and though I liked it very much, I was greatly displeased with the version I bought distributed by Front Row Entertainment Canada. First off, it said the film was digitally remastered, which was why I bought it. Well, now it's worse than the old vhs versions. It hasn't been restored to its widescreen version, and you can tell that things are cut out of the picture with the fullscreen version--it is that obvious. You can also tell that the source tape used for this DVD is an old rented vhs that has been viewed millions of times. And the film is so horribly bright, you can hardly make out what is on the screen. I had to readjust my television just to watch this film. If this is Front Row Entertainments idea of digitally remastered, I think they should have left the venture for someone who could have done this film justice and presented it as the classic it really is. What a disappointment! Thumbs down to Front Row Entertainment Inc.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Eddie Murphy: Delirious (1983 TV Special)
10/10
The funniest stand up routine I have ever seen!
27 September 2003
I know it's crude, and I know that it isn't at all PC, but it's so funny. If you can put it into perspective that it's from the early 80's and it carries all the stereotypes of the time--and the movie still makes you almost pass out with laughter--than it is truly a good comedy. Going with the tradition of what comedies have been for thousands of years, the subject matter of this film is exagerated. If you can suspend your political correctness for an hour and a half, just to have an all-out laugh, than please watch this.

P.S. Would someone please put this out on DVD, it's so hard to find on VHS anymore.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
This movie rocks, literally!
12 September 2003
This is a great portrayal of what a good rock concert should be like. Full of energy, lots of good tunes, and filmed on 35mm film, it is truly inspiring. I wish all shows could be this good. Long live AC/DC!
3 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this