Movie Pre-Judgments (2007)
by Rusty W. Spell

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28 Dec 2007

AVPR: Aliens vs. Predator - Requiem -- The movie so colony that it needs a dash.  Just another monster movie.

The Bucket List -- Sentimental piece by Rob Reiner starring two actors that are so good you don't care about them anymore.

The Great Debaters -- Feels like a Quantum Leap episode without all the cool sci-fi stuff.  Produced by Oprah, which should tell you about all you need to know.

The Orphanage -- The kind of ghost story you've come to expect.  This was new ten years ago.

Persepolis -- At first, you think this is a remarkable movie.  The animation and drawings look different, it's got a nice color scheme, it seems to be for adults, etc.  Then you realize that shooting this live-action would render it unremarkable automatically.  Then you further realize that the animation and drawings are just extremely stylized Disney after all.  Then you get bored.

There Will Be Blood -- Here's all I really need to say: P.T. Anderson does not fuck around.  (If you want me to say something else, however: this is Daniel Day-Lewis's best role.)

The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep -- A pretty good children's movie about the Loch Ness Monster.  Has elements of E.T. and that movie where the kid rides the dragon.

21 Dec 2007

Charlie Wilson's War -- Like a lot of Mike Nichols films, this has an interesting premise but is kind of boring and could have been done much better.  All of the actors (Hanks, Roberts, PS Hoffman) look like they themselves, dressed up and acting and doing accents.

National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets -- These movies have a lot of fun making up wacky things to stick in a movie, in this case, a "president's book of secrets" that contain all the major American mysteries, that only the president can see.  That's why I like them.  They take things even less seriously than Indiana Jones movies.  This, like the first, is worth seeing.

P.S. I Love You -- This movie's premise is that a dead husband has left behind lots of letters, tapes, etc. for his wife that will come to her at intervals.  Not exactly the best way to grieve and move on with your life, but the movie -- of course -- sets this up as a romantic thing.  Stupid girls all across the country will love it.  It will be second only to The Notebook.  P.S. The movie also establishes Hilary Swank as a hot girl when, in fact, she is a horse face.

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street -- Tim Burton these days seems to be a guy who thinks that magical combinations will be foolproof, in this case Johnny Depp + Helena Bonham Carter + a gruesome musical for girls and sensitive boys to swoon over.  But it ain't foolproof.  It's not bad either, but it's no Pee-wee's Big Adventure.  It has sort of a dullish feel to it and doesn't commit to going balls-out on the musical front: a little bit of a waste of Sondheim.

Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story -- For a while, I resisted the charms of Judd Apatow.  But now I see that he's the number one force for comedy in this moment, and this movie (that he's produced and co-written, along with director Jake Kasdan) is just as funny as The 40 Year Old Virgin, Talladega Nights, Knocked Up, Superbad, and all the other contemporary classics we've been given in the last two years.  We're living in a golden age of comedy, apparently, because of this one man and his team.  This one is a semi-parody of Walk the Line (and if anything deserved to be made fun of, it was that overrated piece of shit) and of Johnny Cash's career in general, but it's a new character and not meant to be Johnny.  This one has a better understanding of Johnny Cash and early rock music than Walk the Line did, and this is actually a darker movie, tapping into some real stuff while staying funny the entire time.  A new kind of dark comedy, I'd go so far to say.  John C. Reilly has been my boyfriend since Boogie Nights, and he's only gotten funnier, smarter, and more real.  This is one of the best movies of the year.  Treat yourself to a Christmas present.

14 Dec 2007

Alvin and the Chipmunks -- Why can't they make at least one good thing like this?  This is the same crap as Garfield, Scooby Doo, and all the rest of the CG / live action mix movies based on cartoon characters.  Ross Bagdasarian, Jr. is doing the chipmunk voices, but his father rolls over in his grave each time a small child laughs at Theodore farting in David Seville's (Jason Lee's) face.

I Am Legend -- A remake of The Omega Man (sorta), but with a dumber title.  It's not bad.  The "humanity" stuff doesn't get in the way too much and Will Smith is charming enough to watch as the last man on earth (though he does throw out plenty of typical jokes).  Worth renting when you're alone in your house with zombies outside.

Juno -- Just what we need: a distanced, ironic comedy about teen pregnancy shot with all the indie camera angles and twee music.  (Nothing says "I just changed my life entirely at age sixteen" like The Moldy Peaches.)  Disaffected teens are one thing, but this movie even has disaffected parents.  And kids who are completely worldly and savvy in every other way except in the ability to put on a condom.  Not even Jason Bateman and the non-fat kid from Superbad saved this one for me.

The Kite Runner -- Don't go see. That was simple.

The Perfect Holiday -- The person you're not supposed to be rooting for (the evil ex-husband) is the most likeable and best character in the movie.  Everyone else and everything else is typical holiday family crap.

Youth Without Youth -- It's Coppola's best movie in a while, but he does that thing he does where it's kind of exciting at the beginning and then you find yourself looking around the room and thinking about other things.

7 Dec 2007

The Amateurs -- There's nothing really good about this movie, but it's pretty harmless.  The actors are all likeable and it feels like a "why not?" movie on their parts, one they're not taking too seriously.  It's a decent way to kill an afternoon in front of the TV with your dad.

Atonement -- A decent movie, though it blows its load pretty early in the film and leaves you watching simply to watch the rest unfold as you know it will.  There's also an odd mingling of naive romance (on the filmmakers' part) with a commentary on ignorance that makes the movie look kind of dumb.  But for the first forty-five minutes or so, you'll think you're watching something smart.

The Golden Compass -- It's not the next Lord of the Rings (as New Line is suggesting), but it beats out the Narnia movie in a lot of ways--though not in the area of how their talking animals look, since both look ridiculous (the polar bear here looking like the one from the Coke commercials, mingling with the human world).  As a children's movie, it's nice; it doesn't insult intelligences (or bring them down).  It's also refreshing, among the glut of religious movies, to see some anti-religious sentiments coming through (though not nearly as much as in the books).  Nicole Kidman gives the movie the proper grace (and coldness).  Should be a nice Christmas treat for fantasy lovers.

Grace Is Gone -- John Cusack puts on nerd glasses in order to look like writer/director James C. Strouse and stars in a movie that would be bearable if it weren't for the constant sad piano plinks and all the other sentimental stuff I hope you're tired of by now.

Revolver -- Another movie that compares something or other (in this case, some kind of ganstering) to chess.  Watching an actual chess game would be more exciting, however, than watching this Guy Ritchie movie who seems to be combining the content of his older films with the boringness of Swept Away.  Andre 3000 is in the movie, once again showing that he can't act, in case you haven't figured it out yet.

The Walker -- Woody Harrelson is interesting for four minutes.

30 Nov 2007

Awake -- Annakin Skywalker does some more bad acting in an even dumber movie than him.

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly -- In spite of its (seems to me) overdone subject matter (paralyzed guy blinks out his feelings and descriptions of interior world with one good eye), the images presented on the screen are pretty lovely and sharp.

The Savages -- Philip Seymour Hoffman + Laura Linney + typical "indie" vibe probably creams y'all's pants, huh?  Well, it don't mine.

23 Nov 2007

August Rush -- This movie was apparently scripted around lines that someone thought would sound good in a trailer, such as "I believe in music the way some people believe in fairy tales," which only makes sense if you're an idiot (which is what the movie is counting on).  There are so many levels of badness here you won't be sure what you're vomiting at.

Enchanted -- I'll give ya this one.  It's got a lot of the same stupid jokes, but it has just as many that at least have the vague whiff of being smart to the youngster audience it's targeting.  The premise more or less works.  Take the kids: Rusty approved!

Hitman -- Dude, wouldn't it be cool if there were some guy who doesn't even have a name?  Instead, he has, like, a number--he's called 47 or whatever.  And he has a bar-code tattooed to the back of his bald head?  And he's, like, a hitman who works for some secret agency.  It's called The Agency or whatever, cause it's like, you know, like our government and stuff or whatever.  Man.

I'm Not There -- A bunch of actors do stupid Bob Dylan impressions to represent various incarnations of his career.  Annoying for Dylan fans and worthless or anyone else.

The Mist -- The horror doesn't work and neither does the political and religious commentary that covers the entire film.  The actors are too arch, for one.  The religious "freaks" (cause that's how they're shown) are pretty much like that chick from Edward Scissorhands.  Someone actually says "cut and run" at some point, bringing the metaphor back to a literal meaning, which quickly turns it to a metaphor again.  Turns out, too, that's it's more or less a giant bug movie.

This Christmas -- Bill O'Reilly watched this movie and was surprised to see that black people have Christmases very much like white people do.  They put up a tree, open presents, take a lot of pictures, eat turkey (with utensils!), and everything.  He didn't enjoy the movie, but he learned a lot from it.

16 Nov 2007

Beowulf -- The motion-capture stuff here makes the movie look somewhere between the old Ralph Bakshi Lord of the Rings and 300: not quite a cartoon, not quite real.  Probably good to do it as animation, however, since that's what most of the movie would have been anyway.  Hey, I bet you didn't picture Grendel's mother as sexy when you read the epic back in high school, did ya?  Well, that's the kinds of bonuses you get here.  I have to admit that the movie is pretty kick-ass in its own way, and it's pretty much the best Zemeckis movie since his Back to the Future trilogy.  (Another bonus: Crispin Glover plays Grendel.)  The ubiquitous Neil Gaiman helped script the movie.  If you don't like it, you can say that Anonymous is rolling in his grave.

Love in the Time of Cholera -- Don't be suckered into seeing this just because it's connected to Gabriel Garcia Marquez.  Just re-read the book instead.  This is just another dumb love story, pretty much on the same level of The Notebook.

Margot at the Wedding -- Newest piece of indiecrap from Noah Baumbach.  Apparently he took Nicole Kidman, Jack Black, and the rest of the actors and said, "Just make poochy mouths and talk low.  It'll be sure to bring out the pretentious twenty-somethings."

Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium -- Dustin Hoffman goes too far with the "doopty doo, I'm an eccentric magical toy store owner" routine and Natalie Portman goes in the opposite direction, playing the pretty girl who sits next to you in philosophy class who becomes less pretty the more you get to know her and the more boring she becomes.  Jason Bateman's the only one who gets it right.  The real main character of the movie, the store itself, is also lame.  No Chocolate Factory here.  The plot is so typical that it's a waste to even have magic involved at all.

Redacted -- I watched this on a day when I had to get my pupils dilated, so I kept my eyes closed the entire time, but it sounded interesting enough.  Seems to walk the line between anti-war movie and exploitation, often falling off the line into the latter--it is Brian De Palma, after all.

Southland Tales -- Our web site is probably most famous for the hate article I wrote to Richard Kelly and his fans about his movie Donnie Darko: The Rantings and Bitchings of a Mid-Twenties Dickhead.  Here's his nerd lineup for this movie: The Rock, Mandy Moore, Kevin Smith, Justin Timberlake, and Janeane Garofolo.  If you like all those people, then you're worse off than I thought you were.  He's also got Sarah Michelle Geller, but of course he makes her a porn star.  Why?  Because he's jacking off to her right now in his parent's house (the new one that he bought them, of course, but still).  He's thrown in some Mad TV and SNL guys (because this is supposed to be a comedy and he heard somewhere that they could do that kind of thing).  This one is some dorky distopian story about the future (go figure).  You know, I never really knew what it was like to be a bully in school.  I never was bullied, so I didn't see it from any angle.  But talking about Richard Kelly just makes me want to beat the shit out of him.  He's exactly my age (I'm two months older), so it's too bad he wasn't at my school.  "Hey, NASA boy, stick this in your worm hole!"  "Hey, whassamatter?  Your milk money got dropped into a temporal warp and the only way to get it out is by being moody all day long and whining that your parents only drink coffee at Starbucks?"  Jesus, what a tool.

9 Nov 2007

Borderland -- A horror movie that taps into our deep, dark fear of Mexicans.  This is one of the movies from HorrorFest, a group of scary movies that's shown for only one week in theaters.

The Deaths of Ian Stone -- A man dies a more horrible death each day of his new life.  An audience is bored to tears.  Part of HorrorFest.

Fred Claus -- For a movie that has the same amount of crap as the similar Bad Santa or Elf, this isn't completely awful.  Vince Vaughn does his Vince Vaughn thing (if you don't like that thing, then avoid this) and if you embrace the heartwarming stuff, it works okay.  Just don't forget that I also warned you about that fair amount of crap.

I'll Believe You -- Should be funnier than it is.  It has some moments; most of it is sort of an average heartwarmer.

Lake Dead -- One of the better HorrorFest entries, which means that it's about as average as a normal horror movie.

Lions for Lambs -- I was rooting for this movie before I saw it, thinking it would throw together all the "left" perspectives about the "war" on "terror" (quotation marks not mine... or are they?) and, out of it, create a really interesting thriller.  However, even though it's pretty decent, it sometimes just feels like a liberal internet blog with more interesting pictures.  Believe it or not, the best part is Tom Cruise.  The worst part is Robert Redford, both his direction and his acting.  Meryl Streep is dressed exactly like the people that will be sitting in the audience and clapping their hands at the end.  Final advice: go see it or rent it; you'll probably give it at least three stars on Netflix.

Mulberry Street -- Night of the Living Dead, except that you turn into a rat or something (and of course not as good).  Part of HorrorFest.

Nightmare Man -- Something about a monster or something.  Part of HorrorFest.

No Country for Old Men -- The Coen Brothers are back!  And by "back" I don't mean "with another shitty movie like their last two."  I mean "they're mutherfuckin back!"  This one's about a guy who goes around killing and doing other amazing things with a portable cigarette lighter while being hunted by Tommy Lee Jones.  See?  You gots to see this one.

Om Shanti Om -- This is some fucked up shit right here, even for Bollywood.

P2 -- Hell, it's as good as any other standard horror movie.  The one vs. one quality at least gives it some focus.  Rent it for a night with your girlfriends.  (Not part of HorrorFest.)

Saawariya -- It's pretty.  That's about it.

Unearthed -- Someone saw Alien and thought a crappy rip-off set in the sticks would be in order.  Part of HorrorFest.

2 Nov 2007

American Gangster -- It's not a movie for me and my tastes, but it looks like a good one from my more objective point of view.  You'll probably dig it.

Bee Movie -- The only clever thing about this movie is the title.  Why has Jerry Seinfeld been talking about and working on this thing for like five years?  Why do all animated characters these days look like this:

Stupid single white block for teeth, often smirking.
Mouth constantly moving because everything's four times as fast as it needs to be to cram in the "whazzups."

Before the Devil Knows You're Dead -- Hawke. Tomei. Finney. Hoffman (Phillip Seymour, not the other one). And Lumet, in his best movie since... I dunno, hell, Network probably.  This is some good shit.  Ethan Hawke should be shot in the face, but everyone else provides just the right amount of tension needed in the art of storytelling.

Darfur Now -- The documentary itself is good, but the people in it are pretty annoying, I hate to say.

Martian Child -- John Cusack gets all Big Daddy on us and makes a movie that's certainly got some stupid and sentimental moments, but on the whole is not so bad.

26 Oct 2007

Bella -- Not a great film, but it's my winner for Best Non-Sequitur: "What are you doing today?" "I'm pregnant."

Dan In Real Life -- This is a fairly typ movie, but Steve Carell does a good job in it and makes you like him.  If you have to watch one sucky, standard relationship movie this month, pick this one.

Dark Blue Almost Black -- This Blew, It Was Crap.  (That's supposed to rhyme with the title.  It's the newest "General Betray Us" style joke that's sweeping the nation.)

How To Cook Your Life -- "Zen and the Art of Cooking," sorta.  Pretty images involving food that become boring after a while.

Jimmy Carter: Man from Plains -- A pretty good Jonathan Demme documentary if you're into Pres Carter (which I kinda sorta am).  When you watch something like this, you feel like it's something TV should be doing (instead of whatever the hell TV is actually doing) so that we can watch it there and leave the movie-movies for the big screen.  So there: put that in your pipe.

Music Within -- This has some sentimental flourishes, but it's actually a not too bad movie about people with disabilities and a guy who, ya know, "makes a difference."  That guy is Ron Livingston, so maybe that explains why it works.

Rails and Ties -- Kevin Bacon is a train engineer (take a while to picture that before reading on) who smashes into a mother who commits suicide by parking her car on the tracks, her son jumping out at the last minute.  The son then shows up at Kevin Bacon's doorstep and he and his wife take the boy in as their son, more or less.  Stupid things are said, sentimental music is played, and once again the concept of "family" is spiked into our brain.  Clint Eastwood's daughter directs this one and she's almost as bad as her dad.

Saw IV -- Saw-ry, but I "saw" this one and it saw-ked.

19 Oct 2007

The Comebacks -- The only semi-positive thing you can say about this movie is that it isn't called Sports Movie--though maybe that would have been better, since it would have given you the right idea.  No one can do funny parodies anymore.  They can only take something that was already sorta funny and ratchet it up a bit.  Example: they do a parody of Dodge Ball (already a comedy, so not really suitable for parody) and, in the dodge training scene, shoot bullets at the players.  Ha ha?  It kinda makes you wish Airplane! had never come out.

Gone Baby Gone -- One of two "guy loses kid, becomes vigilante" plots in only one week.  They should really lay off of these for a while.  Ben Affleck directs his brother.

O Jerusalem -- Um, not bad if it's your kind of thing.  Not bad.

Rendition -- It's certainly good in real life that it's finally coming out that America uses torture, that torture doesn't work, that innocent people get abused for no reason, etc.  (Would be even better if something were actually done about it.)  It just doesn't always make for the best movie.  Once again, Jake Gyllenhaal helps ruin the movie, with a character who would have been boring anyway, by giving us glazed-eye looks and unconvincing convictions and turmoil.  Reece Whitherspoon probably does the best, looking like that chick at your high school reunion who lost some weight and finally learned how to dress.

Reservation Road -- The second "guy loses kid, becomes vigilante" movie of the week.  Crap.  Joaquin Phoenix needs to keep that beard.

Sarah Landon and the Paranormal Hour -- I doubt this movie series will catch on, which is too bad, since it seems like the only true horror for ten-year-old girls ever made.  And, if you ask me, ten-year-old girls need quality horror too.  Something not too scary, but creepy enough to make them jump at slumber parties, with cute non-threatening boys and smart girls as the lead.  Maybe it'll do good on DVD.  Anyway, it's better than Hannah Montana, and Sarah Landon doesn't slur and drip her lines over her big teeth.

The Ten Commandments -- The Moses story animated with the same quality (or less) than a computer game, but that's not necessarily a bad thing.  The story is told fairly straight, with minimal "preaching," and it's better than Prince of Egypt or anything that Disney has put out in the last fifteen years or more.

Things We Lost in the Fire -- Has one of those annoying short story titles, and the stuff in the movie feels like it might work better in that form than this.  Benicio del Toro is good, Halle Berry is annoying as always.

Thirty Days of Night -- Here's a good rule of thumb: If Sam Raimi directs the picture, it'll probably be good; if Sam Raimi produces the picture, it'll probably be average or below.  This one is average with a little bit tipping over the top.  You'll get sick of seeing the color blue by the time you're finished watching this one.

Weirdsville -- So "weird" that, in the middle of it, I went to get some chips and salsa, came back, began eating them, and became more intrigued by the shapes the salsa chunks made on my chip than the movie itself.

Wristcutters: A Love Story -- Some things to applaud and some things to boo.  I applaud the fact that someone has imagined an afterlife that's different from what we've seen in other movies.  It's a simple idea, but works well enough and has a certain logic to it.  I boo the premise itself and the way its executed: the afterlife for suicides is a grim world where no one can smile (fair enough), but the people in it seem to be looking for answers, falling in love, living life essentially--you know, all the things that you wouldn't imagine suicidal people doing.  So, apparently, the writer knows not that much about suicide.  (Go ahead and write to say he knew one or whatever; he's still wrong.)  Beyond the premise, it's mostly just another romantic comedy with some Jim Jarmushian trappings (complete with Tom Waits).  If it's between watching the movie and killing yourself, watch the movie.

12 Oct 2007

Control -- Hey all you thirtysomethings, you are now old enough to see a movie about Joy Division!  The movie's the usual stuff: troubled rock guy's fame and fortune rises as he goes down the tubes.  There are the usual "shocking" moments, like the band not being able to say "cock" on the radio or whatever.  And, of course, Ian Curtis kills himself at the end, just like all the rock-n-roll morons (I'm looking at you in hell, Cobain).  Good thing, too, since New Order became a much better band anyway.

Elizabeth: The Golden Age -- Though I can't say I especially like this movie, I do admit that it's what movies are all about.  It's huge, lavish, it's got all the costumes, it has Academy Award winners (or nominees) screaming around all over the place, it's got speeches, war, historical backdrops: the works.  This one even features Clive Owen as Sir Walter Raleigh!  The same tricks of the first Elizabeth are here, with a more action-packed storyline (that allows the queen to let her hair down).  I can't blame you if you love it.

Lars and the Real Girl -- Ryan Gosling (with an ironic moustache: ironic to the movie makers, not to the character) goes insane and falls in love with a Real Doll and everyone has to go along with it (sound familiar?) in order to get him well: doctor's orders!  Tries hard to be a hipster indie comedy, but isn't even smart enough to be that retarded.

Michael Clayton -- Another averagely-good thriller starring Handsome Clooney.  Many will rent, few will adore.

Sleuth -- One of the best movies of the year.  Kenneth Branagh's not always the very best director, but he's good, and he's good here, and this one is very stylish-looking.  And get this beautiful bit of casting: In the original Sleuth (written by original Wicker Man writer Anthony Shaffer), Laurence Olivier played Andrew and Michael Caine played Milo.  In the original Alphie, Michael Caine played the title role.  In the remake, Jude Law did.  In this version of Sleuth, Michael Caine plays Andrew and Jude Law plays Milo.  That's the kind of casting logic I can drool over.  Of course, the big name here is Harold Pinter who has adapted the original play/movie for the screen.  He's still got it.  (Too bad the original isn't available on DVD.)

Terror's Advocate -- A pretty smart and interesting documentary about a lawyer for terrorists, bringing the idea of terrorism to an audience in a way they haven't quite seen before.  Recommended.

We Own the Night -- Typical crap about one brother who went into the mob and another who became a cop.  How those two things are only separated by two letters (one of which is the other one flipped-upside-down).  Etc.

Why Did I Get Married? -- Tyler Perry is known for making the most average of comedies--with himself as an old woman thrown in.  This time, he's not even dressed like an old woman.

5 Oct 2007

Feel the Noise -- While I was watching this, I had to look through my old We Like Media notes to see if I'd seen it already.  No, I hadn't.  (But I had, if you catch me.)  This one is about a Puerto Rican named ReggaeTon-Loc.  (I wish.)

Finishing the Game -- I'm soooo bored with mockumentaries (I'm even bored with that name), but once I'm not anymore, I'll re-watch this and semi-enjoy it.

The Good Night -- Martin Freeman (from The Office), whose best friend is Simon Pegg, is bored with Gwyneth Paltrow (lucky guy) so he gets Danny DeVito to help him lucidly dream about Penelope Cruz.  It can't even handle the somewhat simplistic concept it's trying to get across, but it's worth seeing if you like any of these actors.

The Heartbreak Kid -- The Farrellys stopped being interesting to me around the time that they told us that all ugly girls have a heart of gold and all pretty girls are bitches--and that the only way to show inner beauty is through the outside (or whatever that thing was supposed to do).  This isn't nearly as bad as that one, or as forgettable as... whatever that Siamese twin thing was called... but it's more annoying (and, again, a little offensively stupid, as opposed to the good kind of stupid, which is what I used to like from these guys) than both in terms of volume and noise.  Gear up for more female dichotomies!

My Kid Could Paint That -- Adult stupidity exposed, including your own (and my own), and in an interesting way.  A dare: see if you can watch this (at home, not in the theater) with a friend of yours or your spouse or someone without adding your own running commentary.  Your head will explode!  I like this movie.

The Seeker: The Dark Is Rising -- Walden Media once again takes a fantasy-twinged book and makes it into a movie that is like a third generation Narnia (or whatever), this time peppering the script with Lord of the Ringsy stuff too ("Even the smallest light can shine in the darkness," etc.).  The fantasy parts sometimes get too over-the-top, but the tempering of that with teen "common" talk makes it even worse.  But... it's not bad.  Rent it, take the kids, whatever.

28 Sep 2007

The Darjeeling Limited -- Wes Anderson loosens up his framed shots just a little bit and directs this story written by him, Jason Schwartzman (also starring), and Roman Coppola.  Better than The Life Aquatic, not as good as Balls of Fury.

Feast of Love -- Boring people fall in boring love.  Certain things are thrown in to "spice" it up, like two Lesbians and even interracial senior citizens!

The Game Plan -- The Rock and a precocious kid.  Sign me up... for suicide.

The Kingdom -- This movie tries to be both a serious political war drama and a Jamie Foxx bad-ass action movie and fails at both.

Lust, Caution -- I admire Ang Lee for doing whatever the hell he wants.  This is a very stylish and pretty romantic thriller that gets boring from time to time but keeps you captivated in one way or another.

Postal -- I guess Uwe Boll is the next big thing in self-made movies and I'm just now noticing.  This is his best and funniest movie so far and a good place to start with him.  Another video game adaptation from him, not that that matters.

Trade -- If you want to watch a movie about human trafficking, watch Lilya 4-Ever instead of this piece of shit.

21 Sep 2007

Antonia -- Not horrible for a movie about a hip-hop girl group, but not anything anyone anywhere would really want to watch either.  Figure that out.

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford -- Great title.  The movie had a lot of potential.  It lived up to 15% of it.  You could watch it for that.

Good Luck Chuck -- Maybe someday someone will explain to me the appeal of Dane Cook as a comedian or actor (I buy that he's cute, of course).  This is a very typ, repulsive movie, and not just because of Cook.

Into the Wild -- Idiot-boy Sean Penn writes and directs this movie based on Christopher McCandless's life: another idiot who decided to leave his normal parents live life "on the wild side, man" and wander around until he starved himself to death, only twenty miles from civilization.  Of course, Sean Penn treats him as a hero rather than a moron.

The Jane Austen Book Club -- Raise your hand if you're tired of any movie that has anything remotely to do with Jane Austen.  For those of you not raising your hands, make like Jesus and suck it.

Resident Evil: Extinction -- Much ado about something or other.  The director (Russell Mulcahy) seems to be bringing in some of his old Highlander tricks, as well as his Australian Mad Max buddy, George Miller.

Sydney White -- The Snow White retelling could be okay if it didn't keep screaming "Hey, we're doing Snow White with a Mean Girls twist!" at you.  An average teen comedy with one or two quirks going for it, directed by the guy who -- some time ago now -- created George Lucas In Love.  (One of the nerd dwarfs has a puppet the entire movie.)

14 Sep 2007

Across the Universe -- I'm not going to talk about whether this movie is "good" or "bad."  I'm getting a little bored of that.  Instead, I'll just say that this is one of the more interesting movies to come out in a long time.  Julie Taymor (Frida, Titus) directs a movie that's based around a lot of Beatles songs, but not in a dumb way like Sgt. Pepper's with the Bee Gees.  The visuals are interesting throughout, and the whole thing feels like someone fell asleep while listening to the Beatles 1 album and had these dreams.  For people who are sick of Beatles crap, though, don't let it bother you.  It's not like it's a Beatles movie.  You can easily ignore all the references and music.  See it in some form.

The Brave One -- The usual territory of an innocent who gets hurt by criminals, and then by the system that protects the innocent, becoming a criminal and wrestling with what they've become.  This time it's Jodie Foster.  It's an averagely-okay movie to watch, but it's just as well not to.

December Boys -- Harry Potter stars with a bunch of boys who do boy stuff.

Dragon Wars: D-War -- Man is this cheesy.  Just goes to show how much CGI stuff you can do on your PC now, so that any idiot who likes dragons can put this together in his spare time.  It's probably best not to try to begin figuring out that title.

Eastern Promises -- Cronenberg sux.

Fierce People -- Takes the premise that rich people are like primitive tribes and drills that idea into your skull the length of the movie until you're dead.  Cheaply made, and not in a good way.

The Hunting Party -- One of those movies that says things like "death is addictive" or whatever and expects you to respect the sentiment as some kind of profound truth.

In the Valley of Elah -- Starts off as an interesting "what really happened to my son?" thriller then devolves into slow-motion American flags.

Ira and Abby -- If Woody Allen made completely banal movies...

Moving McAllister -- Some kind of odd, out-of-touch Latter Day Saints comedy with Napoleon Dynamite and Mila Kunis.  Not that, um, funny.

Mr. Woodcock -- Billy Bob Thornton can't help but be funny, so you'll get a few smiles from this one... but, yeah, it sucks about as much as you'd expect a movie called Mr. Woodcock to suck.  Some of the jokes just don't make any sense, like when Mr. Woodcock is talking to a fat kid in gym class and says, "You're a disgrace to every fat, gelatinous, out-of-shape little kids the world over."  He's a disgrace to them?  How is that?  By being just like them?  I think he meant that he was representative of them, but that's just the kind of lazy writing present here, where the word gelatinous is enough for the writer to say "that'll work, that's hilarious."

Silk -- Orientalism, etc.

7 Sep 2007

The Brothers Solomon -- This is what the Farrellys would be doing if they were still funny.  This isn't completely hilarious, but the jokes come quickly enough.

The Bubble -- A bubble of boredom.

Hatchet -- Wasn't this the title pitched by Christopher on The Sopranos?  This movie adds nothing new to the slasher set in the woods genre, but simply does it again, saying "Remember this?" as if we don't.

In the Shadow of the Moon -- This movie manages to take the overdone discussion of the moon landing, freshen it up, and actually make it interesting for my generation (that is to say, anyone born well after the first landing who can't wrap their head around how big a deal it was).  The surviving astronauts who went to the moon tell the story themselves, and the NASA footage (not the same ol' stuff) is priceless.  Try your best to avoid every moon show on TV and just watch this thing.

I Want Someone To Eat Cheese With -- This Jeff Garlin movie will not bust your gut, but it has a charm that grows on you as the movie goes on.  It's also got one of the best casts, with Sarah Silverman, Amy Sedaris, Bonnie Hunt, Dan Castellaneta, and Garlin himself.

Shoot 'Em Up -- Props to whoever stuck with this title.  The handsome, charming, and super-cool Clive Owen battles Paul Giamatti (who is likeable for the first time since I don't know when) in one of the better and more cleverly funny action movies.

3:10 to Yuma -- Weird/dumb title.  Average western.

31 Aug 2007

Balls of Fury -- You know the new thing: take a goofy or weird sport (figure skating, race car driving, dodge ball), add a goofy or weird guy (Will Ferrell, Ben Stiller), and let the hilarity ensue!  The good news is, often it does.  The word formula has a negative connotation, but the positive part of the word is that it implies that someone has found something that, when mixed properly, will yield intended results.  This is not a new comedy classic, but it does make for a funny night at the movies and it's got some odd-enough stuff going on that it stands out from some of the other sports comedies.  (Oh, and in case you didn't know, the sport in question this time is ping-pong.)

Death Sentence -- The Saw guy goes all Straw Dogs on us.  Kevin Bacon makes the movie halfway watchable, but lots of it is just offensively stupid.

Deep Water -- Rent this if you're in the mood for a halfway-decent documentary.

Halloween -- Here's the thing about the original Halloween.  It needed to be redone eventually.  The first one, though it broke a lot of ground for direction, music, etc. in a horror movie, didn't really make sense.  Was Rob Zombie the guy to remake it?  Well, he initially does an okay job of exploring Michael Myers as a young child and how he's overtaken by evil (or whatever), which was something only vaguely (and oddly) alluded to in the original movies, adding "superpowers" as the movie saw fit for no real reason.  But even that gets lost here, and everything gets thrown in a big pile after about twenty minutes and it just turns into the usual girl screaming and dude in a mask.  This is better than the other Rob Zombie movies and it's worth seeing for Halloween fans, but those expecting a truly good movie (even a good horror movie) can safely avoid it.

Ladrón que Roba a Ladrón -- Some Guy Richie-lookin' movie in Spanish.

The Nines -- The story of some guy who finds out he's a character in The Sims... or something like that.  It's dumb.

Self-Medication -- A drug addict smashes glass at least two or three times while his mother screams "You need help!"  It's completely original!

24 Aug 2007

Closing Escrow -- You will give this a solid three stars on Netflix, but you will not be at all tempted to give it four.

Dedication -- Justin Theroux (my celebrity boyfriend) directs a really good cast: Billy Crudup (playing someone less dirty and messy than he usually plays), Diane Wiest, Tom Wilkinson, Martin Freeman, Bob Balaban, Amy Sedaris, Peter Bogdanovich, and Mandy Moore (doing so well that you aren't thinking to yourself "That's Mandy Moore").  The movie is barely interesting, but it's earnest and you won't hate yourself for renting it.

The 11th Hour -- You know what's cool these days?  Reminding us that the environment is in trouble: and this has the killer soundtrack to prove just how cool it is!  Still, this movie has more punch than some of the others, and offers real solutions both individual and large, unlike the Al Gore thing.  This is presented by Leo DiCaprio.

The Hottest State -- This is the week for actors directing movies.  Ethan Hawke adapts his novel for the screen; the movie is primarily characters saying one "profound" line after another, like, "Why is it that when we're young we're told to follow our dreams, but when we're older we're looked at funny for trying?"

Illegal Tender -- Somewhere this Friday, a teenager going to see a movie by himself for the first time will choose this one and realize, for the first time, what a bad movie is.

Mr. Bean's Holiday -- If you like Mr. Bean... if you don't...

The Nanny Diaries -- When I asked my celebrity girlfriend Scarlett why she did this, she just said, "Oh, you know, one of those things."  The main stock-character bitch lady in the movie calls the nanny "nanny" exclusively, and there are jokes made about yoga.  So there you go.

Resurrecting the Champ -- Intriguing enough for ten minutes at a time, in spurts.

Right at Your Door -- This movie asks the question "What if your wife was contaminated by some deadly toxins and, if you let her in your house, you potentially would be harmed?" but fails to realize that the answer would be "You'd let her in" by any reasonable husband.

September Dawn -- September 11 (1857)!  Conspiracy theories!  Killer Mormons!  A really dumb movie that's bound to achieve a certain amount of cult status, or at least be talked about for a good two weeks, because of its contents.

War -- You'll be napping by the third explosion.

17 Aug 2007

Death at a Funeral -- Frank Oz (Miss Piggy) directs this British comedy that uses a lot of the typical funeral jokes but makes up some pretty good new ones as well.  It's mostly just a bunch of silly stuff that happens, but a good thirty percent of it is entertaining while the rest will not bore you.  Wash from Firefly is in it.

The Invasion -- Nicole Kidman has been in some good movies lately (Birth) and some bad ones (Fur), but they've all been nicely weird.  This one is a body snatching type movie that she does a good job in, though by about forty minutes in, it feels like any surprises are gone and you've seen this before.

The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters -- Seems like a well-made version of one of those specials on G4.  It will entertain you while it's on.  Hey, remember when you first learned that the game was originally going to be called "Monkey Kong" but they made a typo and couldn't go back on it?

The Last Legion -- An Arthurian Legend movie that focuses more on boring battles than the legend itself--though there are still some nods to the sword, Merlin, the Lady of the Lake, etc.  A slightly interesting historical twist on the movie, however, since it shows the transition from Caesar to Arthur.

Superbad -- I would like this movie better if I hadn't seen it about seven times already against my will.  But, in spite of this, it's a pretty funny comedy from the Freaks and Geeks crowd of producers, writers, and directors.  It will be both popular and cultish.

10 Aug 2007

Daddy Day Camp -- Harmless enough for kids.

Descent -- I have no idea what this movie is about.  Something about shirtlessness.

Inside Paris -- Decent-enough French movie.

Rocket Science -- The director of Spellbound makes one of those "indie" movies whose main attribute is that it isn't as annoying as the others.

Rush Hour 3 -- You know, there's nothing really wrong with these movies.  They make all the same jokes, but they hit the marks well enough.

Skinwalkers -- One of those "rock and roll" horror movies, which isn't a compliment.

Stardust -- With all the fantasies being made these days to cash in on the Harry Potter / Narnia / Lord of the Rings craze, it's nice to see this movie that looks like it would have been made no matter what the current trend is.  It's not the greatest thing ever, but it's kinda different, has a good cast that seems to be having fun with their parts, and has the best sense of humor for a fantasy movie since The Princess Bride.

2 Days in Paris -- Director, writer, producer, editor, composer, and star (and my celebrity girlfriend) Julie Delpy makes her first movie all by herself.  And it's actually pretty good!  She and Adam Goldberg are really funny in it.

3 Aug 2007

Becoming Jane -- Though "softer" and not as funny as a Jane Austin novel/movie, the story of young Jane has the wit and elegance you'd expect and does a good job throughout (though it lags toward the end).  Anne Hathaway (who is everywhere) does such a great job that she almost just blends into the screen except at those times when she needs to pop out.  Austin fans should be more or less pleased and others will be happy as well.

The Bourne Ultimatum -- Another solid entry for this spy series.  Me likey.

Bratz: The Movie -- Or: Not Mean Girls.  Like Underdog (see below), this has nothing to do with the Bratz dolls--it's just a name because Average Disney Channel TV Show Style Feature Length Movie won't make as much money.

El Cantante -- Inspired by the true story of a Latin salsa musician who bored everyone to death.

Hot Rod -- The ugliest guy on TV (Andy Samberg) gets his own movie.  It's like a third-class Will Ferrell sports movie.

The Ten -- Less ambitious than Krzysztof Kieslowski's The Decalogue, but just as funny.  This is from David Wain (The State, Wet Hot American Summer, Stella) and is ten stories inspired by the Ten Commandments.  Go watch it, because it will be the funniest new thing you see in six months.

Underdog -- There's no need to fear... Underdog, the movie that will introduce your kids to the classic character Underdog, except it's not Underdog at all, but instead some real dog with a talking mouth that's really dumb and has nothing to do with the original character... is here.  A real Underdog movie could have been great.  This might as well be called Superdog it's so generic.  It's the same thing that happened to Garfield, which might as well have been called The Cat and Dog Movie.  It seems like there should be some rule about not being able to use characters unless they are at least remotely true to the original.  It's not like there's any name recognition here for the target audience, only the parents (maybe).

27 Jul 2007

Arctic Tale -- March of the Penguins, An Inconvenient Truth, and Surf's Up had a three-way and this baby came out.  We're not sure who the daddy is.  And please: join me in not watching any more Queen Latifah movies until she gets the hint.

I Know Who Killed Me -- Right now, the only interesting thing about the movie is that celebrity potential-man-slaughterer Lindsay Lohan stars in it.  Years from now, the only interesting thing about it will be nothing.

Moličre -- Somewhere, a bright thirteen-year-old will watch this and love it.  Years later, having seen countless period pieces just like this one -- neither great nor bad -- will watch it again and think it only average, but with a special appreciation for it being the first.  Perhaps you are that thirteen-year-old.  Or, perhaps, it is years later and you have already seen the predecessors to this when you were thirteen.  Or perhaps you're studying Tartuffe or The Misanthrope in your AP English class and will be interested in watching this.  Perhaps lots of things.

No Reservations -- The movie equivalent of the lower end of adult contemporary music.

The Simpsons Movie -- First of all, it's good to see that the folks at over at finally took down The Simpsons graphic down as the representative show for their "never jumped" category.  (They replaced it with Seinfeld, which did jump when they figured out that the show was "about nothing" and declared it--but I digress.)  This show jumped some time around the turn of the century, which -- though it doesn't seem like it -- was about seven years ago now.  Seven years is a good, long run for even an outstanding show to have; somehow The Simpsons has had at least seven years of really crappy episodes.  Still, they finally got that movie made, so how does it turn out?  Eh, about what you'd expect.  It does a few "hey look, we're in a movie" tricks but is mostly just a long episode of recycled jokes (and those are the best ones) and non-funny zaniness.  If you watch it, treat is as some kind of tribute someone else made to a show that was once the best thing on TV.  But don't think that it's really a movie version of that show you loved, cause it ain't.

This Is England -- A pretty good movie.  It's hard to pull of the point of view of a young boy, but this does it pretty well and originally, and in an interesting setting.

Who's Your Caddy? -- If you think the pun found in the title is hilarious, this movie is for you.  Meanwhile, when will become advanced enough as a culture that stereotypes for white people will be considered racist?

20 Jul 2007

Cashback -- A combination of every slightly-arty film made since 1998 or so.  Nothing new, nothing worth seeing.

Goya's Ghosts -- Milos Foreman knows how to make things look pretty, but this movie -- like almost all movies about painters -- just isn't that great.  Also, Natalie Portman is a dink.

Hairspray -- Kinda makes you want to leave the theater and watch the John Waters movie.

I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry -- Not-too-bad Adam Sandler comedy, funnier than it should be considering that it relies on the not-that-funny premise too much.

Sunshine -- My boy Danny Boyle does it again, this time with a sci-fi adventure that has even stronger elements of fantasy and myth (more like Lord of the Rings than even Star Wars).  Quiet even in its action and camera-jazz, and almost-always smart.  You might need to watch it twice.  This originally was going to come out last March and has been pushed back a zillion times.

13 Jul 2007

Captivity -- Elisha Cuthbert brings a degree of class to what is essentially Saw IV (or whatever number they're up to now).

Drama/Mex -- As far as I could tell, nothing happened in this movie.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix -- All these run together for me.  This one had something to do with an evil wizard.  It's entertaining enough while you're watching it, but I immediately forgot anything that happened once it ended.

Interview -- The premise of a political reporter (Steve Buschemi) who interviews a celebrity (Sienna Miller) and -- as a result of his not really knowing who she is -- the near-love they have for each other is kind of interesting, but then fizzles and gets old within about twenty minutes of this establishment.  Buschemi directs, and once again makes something that's okay but a bit boring, though this may be his best.

My Best Friend -- I saw this in French without subtitles, but it seemed okay.  Good actors.

Rescue Dawn -- Werner Herzog wrote and directed this movie which is based on the events he chronicled in his 1997 documentary Little Dieter Needs To Fly (which you should see as a prerequisite).  While watching that original documentary, you feel that the story is so amazing that you wish you could watch it as a feature, and here it is.  It's certainly Herzog, but it looks enough like a great action and suspense movie that it might actually make some waves (even more than Grizzly Man).  Christian Bale and (a very good) Steve Zahn star.  Captivating throughout, I highly recommend watching it in the theater.

Talk To Me -- The movie strikes an okay balance of 1960s black (as in African American) comedy jive, political commentary, and overall seriousness--sometimes too far in the latter direction for my tastes, but probably not for others.  In its own way, a sometimes-better, sometimes-worse version of Good Morning, Vietnam.

6 Jul 2007

Introducing the Dwights -- It's difficult to be funny.  There's nothing "wrong" with this comedy; it's just bland.

Joshua -- The most annoying thing about this movie are the allusions.  There's the precocious evil child who wears a school uniform / suit-and-tie all the time (The Omen, etc.).  The names are Biblical or at least twisted from Bible stories -- Joshua, Cairn instead of Cain, Abby instead of Abel, Lily instead of Lilith, etc. -- and much of the premise comes from the Cain and Abel story (and Joshua story).  There's the baby scene from Potemkin.  All the Hitchcock.  The "I see dead people" feel.  There's even a scene of Joshua standing in front of a staticy TV.  So all that gets old.  Which is too bad, since otherwise the movie would be a pretty decent thriller.  Try to overlook that stuff if you watch it, but it'll be hard to do.

License To Wed -- I'm going to coin a term here: Pizzicato Movie.  That's one of those dumb comedies where the musical score mostly consists of the string section playing pizzicato (plucking the strings in a cutesy way) during the parts that are supposed to be funny.  As soon as you hear that this kind of score has made it into a movie, you can turn it off or leave the theater.  This is one of those.  I'll try to give you warnings from now on about Pizzicato Movies.

Transformers -- Although I was a young child in the 1980s, I have almost no attachment to the Transformers.  (I was more of a Go-Bot guy -- less complicated -- and I only had one of them.)  So I can't tell you if it will live up to any childhood expectations you might have.  But I can tell you that Michael Bay's actually not that bad at making an action movie, which may sound obvious to many of you.  I'd recommend seeing this in the theater (bring one Transformers-obsessed thirtysomething for maximum fun) or watching it really loud at your house when it comes out on DVD.

29 Jun 2007

Evening -- Another of the "one true love" movies, where regret somehow equals romance.

Live Free or Die Hard -- After the initial coolness of realizing you're watching another Die Hard movie wears off, the movie will just sort of settle in to a somewhat-formulaic action rut, but not one that will much hinder your enjoyment.  Netflix the first three real quick, then watch this one with some old buddies from the 80s and early 90s.

Ratatouille -- Another dumb kids movie.

Sicko -- Michael Moore has followed the same formula for his documentaries since Roger and Me, and he's been getting increasingly annoying with each one, and this one feels downright "safe."  But it's a good formula, even an okay kind of annoying, and the safeness will make you angry with the information you already know rather than comforting you, so it's still worth watching if you haven't gotten complete liberal documentary burn-out.

Vitus -- An averagely-good movie about a child prodigy.  Too many shots of the kid playing piano, trying to wow us, but not enough time spent actually telling a different story about a "wunderkind."

22 Jun 2007

Black Sheep -- Thank goodness for Shawn of the Dead for making stuff like this have a chance.  Sure, there have always been "attack of the not-very-threatening thing" comedy horror movies (killer tomatoes come to mind), but this one doesn't simply rely on that one joke to carry the movie.  Like Shawn of the Dead, this one keeps it rolling with real jokes, real horror, and real drama as well.  You truly believe that these people are in danger of being eaten alive by killer sheep.  So I give it my recommend-o.

Evan Almighty -- We don't like Tom Shadyac around here.  His comedies are gooshy-sweet in a bad way, have a specific kind of Christian/family vibe that gives me the heeby-jeebys, and worst of all aren't that funny.  This one is twice as offensive as Bruce Almighty because it taints Steve Carell's career which was on a pretty good upswing.  Before you know it, he'll be having to make shitty movies with Michel Gondry to get his "cred" back.  Let this one die.

1408 -- A truly interesting, well-shot, and well-acted horror/psychological/ghost movie (even though it's based on a Stephen King thing where he rips himself off, borrowing liberally from The Shining).  It has a good sense of color and tone and development, getting crazy when it needs to and maintaining a proper amount of frenzy.  I give you permission to see it in the theater, and you should at least rent it.

A Mighty Heart -- Angelina Jolie with an accent makes her look like an even better actor (I always thought she was good to begin with), but this is not a great movie.

September Dawn -- September 11 (1857)!  Conspiracy theories!  Killer Mormons!  A really dumb movie that's bound to achieve a certain amount of cult status, or at least be talked about for a good two weeks, because of its contents.

You Kill Me -- Interesting for a while in that it's a comedy that plays it more or less straight, with no less an actor than Ben Kingsley in the main role, but then you realize it's more or less like everything else.

15 Jun 2007

DOA: Dead or Alive -- Fun but goofy (or goofy but fun, I'm not sure) video game adaptation.  The usual martial arts tricks-n-stuff, but with even more jokes about girlies and their underwear.  I thought I saw this one last year, but I guess not.

Eagle vs. Shark -- Not as annoying as Neapolitan Dynamo and all the other hip movies about losers for other hip losers, but not that funny either.

Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer -- Like the first one, this probably won't be anyone's favorite superhero movie, but it's fun to watch and harmless (as in, not that annoying) and has a decent sense of humor.  The Silver Surfer is kind of cool in this one and gives the four a non-annoying (as in, not pun-spewing) villain.

Fido -- It will take you a while to get over the fact that it's a bad time to have another zombie horror, but eventually you'll realize that this movie is actually pretty funny.  Besides, writer-director Andrew Currie already did a zombie movie that pre-dated Shawn of the Dead, so it's not like he's ripping anyone off.

Nancy Drew -- I have nothing bad to say about this movie.  I think it's a near-perfect, especially for teens, especially for girls.  Nancy Drew is really charming and well-drawn (and well-cast with Emma Roberts in the main role).  This is one of the few movies for people under twenty-one that I'm going to highly recommend, so go out and see it.

8 Jun 2007

Hostel: Part II -- One of those movies where everyone just says "I never saw part one" or "I thought part one sucked" or "Why did they make a second one?"

Ocean's Thirteen -- Wake me up at Ocean's Twenty-One and I'll drink myself to death.

Surf's Up -- Another stupid kids movie.  The only thing this has going for it is that some of the vocal performances aren't as headache-inducingly annoying as some of its contemporaries; they're more naturalized and human, less cartoony.  This one features a pot-smoking chicken... you know, kids.

La vie en rose -- A movie about Edith Piaf.  It's the usual stuff: silhouettes of the singer from the back in a spotlight... the loud light flash bulb poof and crack of an old film camera...

1 Jun 2007

Crazy Love -- A pretty straightforward documentary with a dull sense of storytelling.

Day Watch -- Eventually the kids will get tired of watching The Matrix over and over, but until then, the sequel to the laughable Night Watch.  Expect even more Capitalized Abstract Names for Very Important Events and Significant Historical Things.

Gracie -- The game of soccer, as played by... A GIRL???  Watch as the controversy steams up the screen in this family pic.

Knocked Up -- Judd Apatow had all his stars in alignment when he made The 40 Year Old Virgin (that's why they did "Age of Aquarius" for the end of the movie), but now he's lost the magic and made just another comedy.  It's not un-funny, but it's nothing special.  (And, as a woman, I'm offended by the phrase "knocked up.")

Mr. Brooks -- The nineteen-year-old that sat next to me because she wanted to see Dane Cook was really disappointed with this movie.  I was unhappy too, and I don't even like Dane Cook.  Actually, though, the movie is watchable enough in an average movie sort of way, just like most Kevin Costner movies.

Pierrepoint -- Also known as The Last Hangman.  Kinda boring, kinda interesting.  Sadly, it's one of the better movies opening this week.

Rise: Blood Hunter -- The usual sex and violence and darkness combo, starring Lucy Liu.

25 May 2007

Angel-A -- Luc Besson fuses Wings of Desire, It's a Wonderful Life, and several other angel movies into a sexy, stylish (in a good way) film that manages to put a new spin on the genre.  It's in French, so bring your subtitle-reading glasses.

Bug -- Whatever magic William Friedkin had while making The Exorcist, he doesn't have here.  This is just a slightly different-than-average horror movie.

The Boss of It All -- If you're all depressed watching Emily Watson dying, Bjork getting hung, or Nicole Kidman and Bryce Dallas Howard dealing with complicated American problems, then you're in luck: Lars Von Trier has made a comedy this time.  It's close in comedy spirit to his TV show The Kingdom (not to be confused with the shitty American remake by Stephen King, Kingdom Hospital), though -- like many of his others -- features an idealist who screws things up for everyone and himself.  See it if you possibly can.  And while I'm talking about it, will someone please give Europa, The Idiots, and The Kingdom 2 a region 1 DVD release?

Golden Door -- Sweeping shots to put you to sleep.  Starring Serge Gainsbourg's daughter.

Paprika -- Eventually someone will present dreams in film that don't just look like Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (not everyone dreams that way), complete with Freudian symbols.  I counted at least six different entities (fairies, business men, schoolgirls: the usual Japanimation stuff) flying through or falling down vagina holes.  If you like Japanese animation, it looks like the kinda stuff you like.  If you're me, you just spend the movie counting vagina holes.

Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End -- Fun stuff if you liked the first two (I barely kinda did).  Bigger and sloppier than ever, so huge that you'll get bored from the spectacle.

18 May 2007

Even Money -- Here's how many good actors it takes to make a dismal movie: 1. Kim Basinger  2. Danny DeVito  3. Kelsey Grammer  4. Ray Liotta  5. Forest Whitaker  6. Jay Mohr  7. Tim Roth.  It takes seven.

Fay Grim -- Two things of note: this is a sequel to 1997's Henry Fool (you know, the movie that was screaming for a part two [note: that was sarcasm]) and this will be released on HDNet (yay for non-theater mediums!).  But how is it?  Not bad.  Kinda funny, kinda boring, kinda quirky in good ways, kinda quirky in bad ways.  Parker Posey is good.  Jeff Goldblum looks extra-handsome in his older age.

Once -- Decent-enough star-crossed couple story involving music.

Severance -- An okay English comedy/horror in the mold of Sean of the Dead.

Shrek the Third -- All out of story ideas, the franchise soldiers on... this time features just as much Justin Timberlake (as King Arthur, pointlessly dubbed "Artie") as Shrek himself.

The Wendell Baker Story -- This is one of those cases where the movie might be okay, might be funny, if it had a certain amount of polish to it.  Luke and Andrew Wilson's down-home indie direction isn't really cutting it for a story that's already kind of dull to begin with.

11 May 2007

Blind Dating -- Would you believe that a comedy called Blind Dating about a blind guy who's looking for love is actually pretty good?  Believe it!

Day Night Day Night -- Has a quiet power to it, though sometimes the price you pay for the newness of this movie is its tendency to be annoying.  I'd watch it anyway if you get the chance.  It's the newest cult classic!

Delta Farce -- This movie isn't as bad as you think it is, but you should also remember how bad you actually think it is.

The Ex -- Jason Bateman tries his best, but this is dumb dingala.  (I just made up the word dingala because I got tired of saying poop, shit, crap, turds, etc.)

Georgia Rule -- Not just bad, not just offensively bad, but also offensive.  I'm going to go on record as saying that Garry Marshall's movies suck and they have always sucked.

The Hip Hop Project -- Presented by Russell Simmons and Bruce Willis, this is yet another version about the power of hip-hop and all that crap.  Here's the truth about rap music and hip-hop, the way: when it's fun, it's pretty good; when it's overly-serious and tries to change the world, it kinda sucks and is boring.  So expect lots of boring music with nineteen-year-old boys rapping over slow, lame beats about how they don't want their little brother being on drugs or whatever.

Home of the Brave -- Has a certain realism for a war movie, but falls flat most of the time.

The Salon -- Soon we'll run out of names for barber shops and then maybe we'll run out of these movies.

28 Weeks Later -- Danny Boyle isn't directing this sequel to 28 Days Later, so it's not exactly worth seeing, but it's not as horrible as a sequel like this could be.

4 May 2007

Away from Her -- If you need some anti-Spiderman this weekend, go see this one.  It's a movie about an adult (okay, senior citizen) love story and it's actually okay, if a little depressing and sometimes dull.  Julie Christie is still beautiful.

Civic Duty -- A pretty good thriller from a promising new director.  The movie plays out like a more proactive Mrs. Kravitz from Bewitched who believes George W. Bush too strongly when it comes to terrorists.  I liked it.  Suggested new title: The Next Door Terrorist.  As a double-duty for this site, I will start giving out better titles for movies with dud titles since there are so many of those floating around.

The Flying Scotsman -- You never thought Scotsmen on bicycles could be so boring.

Lucky You -- Extended gambling/poker metaphors for life.  Just when you think you can hold your vomit back, Drew Barrymore says, "You know what I think?  I think everyone's just trying not to be lonely."

Paris, Je T'Aime -- Twenty short films set in Paris by twenty directors, including the Coen Brothers, Wes Craven, and Gus Van Sant (just to mention a few of our boys).  Features at least three of your favorite actors as well.  Like Lumiere or any other anthology piece, it's hit-or-miss and often barely worth seeing.

Spider Man 3 -- Sam Raimi continues to not screw this thing up, against all odds.  Smartly, story threads from the previous two are weaved (webbed?) into the third installment, projecting it ever-forward.  (The only problem with this, of course, is whether or not Raimi will ever have time to work on something else, since he's one of my favorite directors, after all.)  This one is nicely psychological in a fun and light sort of way.  Watch the first two again to get psyched up, then go see this in the theater.  Twice if you wanna.

The Treatment -- There are a lot of people who will enjoy this movie, but I don't think it's any of my readers.  It's not me.

Waitress -- Keri Russell does a good southern accent, Nathan Fillion turns on his southern charm, Andy Griffith makes everyone happy with his appearance... but the movie sucks.

27 Apr 2007

The Condemned -- That old idea of putting people in a game show to fight for their lives, this time with Stone Cold Steve Austin.  There's nothing much original or interesting about this.

Diggers -- In spite of the presence of my boyfriend Paul Rudd, this is a pretty forgettable movie.  However, here's what's cool about it: on May 1, you can watch it on DVD!  As some of you know from my article, I've been rooting for simultaneous releases for five years now, so little things like this or Bubble get me excited, even if it hasn't happened for a movie I care about yet.

The Invisible -- Another ghost movie.  Actually, another Ghost movie, but without the goofy charm of Patrick Swayze, just some punk kid.

Jindabyne -- Based on the Raymond Carver story "So Much Water, So Close To Home," but with a spicy racial twist!  The movie is slow, but the slowness is part of the fucked-up, dysfunctional mood that's achieved pretty well here.  A good adult movie for those willing to pronounce the goofy title at the box office.

Kickin' It Old Skool -- Jamie Kennedy is not un-funny in some of his forms, but the ironic obsession my generation has with the 1980s has already gone too far.  It went too far ten years ago with The Wedding Singer and I have no idea who these jokes are funny to anymore.  But let's get one thing straight for anyone reading this who doesn't know yet: allusions alone do not a joke make.  It's not a joke if you simply put someone in a break dancing suit.  That said, this isn't the least funny movie out there right now.  It's even okay.  But it is typ, and the 80s stuff is just annoying.

Next -- What new twist can we put on the time travel / psychic thing?  How about seeing two minutes into the future?  Not exactly new?  Oh well, close enough.  Almost nothing in this movie makes any logical sense, which is why -- if you shut your brain off -- it's a decent way of killing an hour and a half.

Snow Cake -- My other boyfriend Alan Rickman tries his best, but there's just no saving this movie about a guy who picks up a hitchhiker, gets in an accident that kills her, finds her mother, finds that she's autistic, sort of falls in love with her, and sort of falls in love with her neighbor.  Just too much on the plate, and it's not handled well.  As with lots of small indie movies, actual mood is replaced by being boring and exaggerated settings or weather (in this case: snow, snow, snow).

Wind Chill -- It gets points for icy cold moodiness and it has some okay twisties, though mostly it's an average teen horror.

20 Apr 2007

Fracture -- Anthony Hopkins vs. Ryan Gosling: who do you think will win?  Another excuse to have Anthony Hopkins play a super-intelligent, soulless murderer (or something like that).  Not too horrible.  But the title is.  Always with the banal when it could have simply been called I Shot My Wife.

Hot Fuzz -- The Sean of the Dead guys are back, with a cop movie.  Not as funny or clever as their first, but funny and clever nonetheless.  Go see it.

In the Land of Women -- You've seen this one before in more successful forms.

Stephanie Daley -- Don't watch unless you're in the mood for a really grim movie.  Icily depressing.  Good though.

The Tripper -- Silly-on-purpose comedy/horror from David Arquette.  It gets really boring really quick, but it's kind of a fun movie to put on and talk through at a slumber party.

Vacancy -- Stupid direction and bad secondary actors.  Several overdone premises fused into one.  Still, not too bad for a rental if you're in the mood for an average thriller.

The Valet -- A kinda funny French comedy.

13 Apr 2007

Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theaters -- First of all, this should have just been called Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon The Movie.  The "colon" joke is funny enough by itself; the "movie film for theaters" is excessive and is more of a Borat joke.  Then again, this movie was clearly not made for me (which, from what I can tell, means that I don't smoke pot).  The TV show might be a blast to some for twenty minutes at a time, but a movie version doing the same thing will eventually show the show's true colors after the high wears off.  The problem with stuff like this is that it's just too "easy."  Like the worst moments of Family Guy, things are funny not because they're funny, but because they're random.  But you know not to listen to me if you love the show.  Go have fun.  Don't watch it in Boston though.

Disturbia -- Teen version of Rear Window that doesn't add enough newness to warrant watching it.

Lonely Hearts -- Bad movie, feels weirdly outdated.

Pathfinder -- Yet another movie that apes the directing style of LOTR to bad effect.

Perfect Stranger -- Decent-enough thriller.  Bruce Willis is pretty good as a menacing bad guy.

Redline -- Dumb car movie.

Slow Burn -- Slow turd.

Year of the Dog -- Mike White does the typical distanced direction of all the hipsters, which is unfortunate since he's kind of a funny guy and since this movie is actually pretty good in a lot of ways, especially the Molly Shannon way.  She's great.  Worth watching for her.  The other annoying thing about the movie: dog people are lame.

6 Apr 2007

Are We Done Yet? -- The audience for this film seems to be anyone who's never seen a movie in his life since there's not one original thing to be found.

Black Book -- Sure, Paul Verhoeven did Showgirls, but he's done good stuff too, like RoboCop.  This one is unlike either of those, a World War II picture (that doesn't focus on the war itself) that uses a lot of his pizzazz to make it stand out from the pack.

Firehouse Dog -- As dog movies for kids go, it's not horrible.  It's tons better than Are We Done Yet?, if that means anything.

Grindhouse -- The kind of movie that makes everyone jizz all over the place, including me.  This is a double-feature of a Robert Rodriguez ("Planet Terror") and Quentin Tarantino ("Death Proof") movie, and it's their most exploitationarific yet!  Expect beautiful women with machine guns for legs and things like that.  It probably won't be your favorite by either of these directors, but you'll have a lot of fun.

The Hoax -- Richard Gere: not annoying?  Unbelievable but true!  Somehow Lasse Hallström (or someone, maybe Gere himself) got Richard Gere to create a really interesting and likable character.  The story is interesting too.  And it's got Alfred Molina.  Hallström isn't always the greatest, but this is one of his best.

The Reaping -- I like this a little, but not much.  It's both more stupid and more smart than it should be, but more of the former.

The TV Set -- The movie that dares to suggest that television is mediocre, unoriginal, and no place for true artists.  Shocking!  Lame premise and annoying movie.

30 Mar 2007

After the Wedding -- Rather than watching this Danish movie, just eat a Danish.

Blades of Glory -- It's not a new comedy classic, but it has enough laughs for a rental one night.

Live Free or Die -- Decently-funny movie.  Watch it or don't and it won't make a difference.

The Lookout -- Both boring and annoying.

Meet the Robinsons -- Another dumb kids movie.

Peaceful Warrior -- Dumb shit.

23 Mar 2007

Color Me Kubrick -- You can get this on DVD already.  It's kinda funny, but not as good as you'd like it to be, or as it could have been.

First Snow -- The movie is over before you know it and you realize you've been daydreaming the entire time.  Almost impossible to watch.

The Hills Have Eyes II -- Not to be confused with The Hills Have Eyes, Part 2, which was the sequel to the original version of The Hills Have Eyes--except that both of them were sequels that didn't need to be made.

The Last Mimsy -- Yeah, I dunno... It's the kind of movie you wish would be good, but it ain't.

Offside -- Eh.

Pride -- The movie is set in the 1970s, which allows it to have a certain kind of sentiment that today looks cheesy but then looked okay.  Somehow the director and actors pulled it off.  It's not a movie I especially like, but it makes me feel good.  Even Bernie Mac will get to your heart.

Reign Over Me -- Adam Sandler proves his subtle acting skills one more time with this movie about a guy who has an emotional breakdown after losing his entire family in 9/11.  And, yes, this is the only movie "about" 9/11 (it's not really about it--in fact, they just say "plane crash" in some of the trailers) that I've liked so far.  Don Cheadle plays his friend, though I kinda wish they'd have gotten Tim Meadows, to give Sandler an SNL buddy and to give someone else a chance.  It's not a perfect movie, but it's worth watching, at least for the performances, even if there's nothing extremely special in the writing and directing.

Shooter -- Not a bad thriller to see during these paranoid times.

TMNT -- So much for a good opportunity to re-imagine the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  The 90s movies weren't that great, but at least they were of their time in a certain way that was nice.  This movie keeps the same 90s jokes and sensibilities for no reason and only adds a kinda cool-looking animation (which it also ruins with the usual cartoony faces and poses in every other CGI-only movie).  Not really worth seeing.

16 Mar 2007

Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon -- Wow.  Um, wow.  This thing is so postmodern that it actually goes beyond postmodernism and eats its own tail into originality.  It doesn't work perfectly, but it's certainly the most clever re-imagining of the slasher movie since Scream.  When you get a chance to see this, see it.

Dead Silence -- Saw creators bank on the idea that people are still scared of talking killer ventriloquist dummies.  Better than Saw, but then what isn't?

I Think I Love My Wife -- Chris Rock (writer/director) and Louie C.K. (writer) deals with the problem of men still wanting a sex life with their wives after marriage while the wives are content to talk about boring domestic shit.  Isn't there a pill for that yet?  Anyway, it's a serious problem, but one that is only really dealt with in stand-up comedy, and this movie is sort of a play-out of those kinds of stand-up acts--though that's really just its disguise: this this is more of a drama than anything.  Eventually someone will figure out how to effectively get the message across that it's less sensitive to not care about your sex life than it is to not care about new drapes for the living room.  Until then, we'll have this kinda average Chris Rock movie.

Nomad -- The land of Borat has its own movie making headway in the US.  It sucks.

Premonition -- Average (decently average) time-screw/deja vu/etc. movie that doesn't pan out like you want it to, but the first 45 minutes or so are entertaining enough.

The Wind That Shakes the Barley -- Borin'.  (That's meant to be said with an Irish accent.)

Tortilla Heaven -- One joke stretched out forever with family/faith crap to back it up.

9 Mar 2007

Exterminating Angels -- Sexy French movie about a guy who films women having orgasms.  The usual Kinsey stuff and all that, and it's sexuality has sort of an 80s feel to it, but it's okay.

The Host -- A really good Korean monster movie (more like Jaws or Alien, less like Godzilla) with a great sense of style, fun, and humor.  Rent it.

Maxed Out -- First Morgan Spurlock told us that fast food is bad for you (wow); now James Scurlock (I'm not making this up) is telling us that credit card companies prefer it when you're in debt.  Double wow!  Apparently if you can edit together footage of people making statements of the obvious, you can get distribution for a documentary.  Expect the usual Bush-bashing for no good reason.

Miss Potter -- Replace Johnny Depp with Renee Zellweger and J.M. Barry with Beatrix Potter.  Throw in some animated rabbits.

The Namesake -- Stupid crap about the importance of your name (unless you're American in which case, as Tarantino pointed out, your name don't mean shit).

300 -- I was embarrassed that someone would see me coming out of the theater when I saw this.  It looks like a collection of cut-scenes from a computer game, only with worse acting ("over the top" doesn't begin to define it).  There's nothing human in this movie to latch on to.  Ugh, boy does this suck.  I mean, the more I think about it, the more it sucks.  It makes me wish that people had stopped making movies already so that this didn't have to exist.  The bad thing is that people will think they like it for some reason: maybe because they like Frank Miller (it's based on one of his comic books) or maybe because a promotion for it allowed them to post 300 pictures on MySpace for a couple of months.  Anyway, my heart bleeds black with suckitude.

The Ultimate Gift -- James Garner uses his last will and testament to teach his grandson about the true meaning of life (hint: it ain't money) by forcing him to be a good person.  As you can tell, this is one of those kinda cheesy family (in this case, faith-based) movies, and one of the more typical, in spite of its okay cast.

2 Mar 2007

Black Snake Moan -- This is like a much-better, more funny, highly "moral" (in a good way--mostly) version of Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!  Newly-bony Christina Ricci and a grizzled Sam Jackson make a great pair in this 70s-looking, exploitation-style comedy adventure.  If this hadn't been made by Craig Brewer, Tarantino would have gotten around to it eventually.  Recommended.

Full of It -- A kid finds that his lies begin to come true.  Somewhat of a new premise, executed about as lamely as you'd expect.  Occasional titters for younger crowds.

Two Weeks -- How many times do I have to endure watching Sally Field dying?  Wasn't Forrest Gump hard enough?  Anyway, it's kind of a lame movie that happens to have a good actor at the center of it.

Wild Hogs -- Harmless, and occasionally charming, movie that uses the same kinds of jokes as a kids movie, only for guys above 40.  I liked it in spite of myself.

Wild Tigers I Have Known -- If you haven't gotten over junior high yet, this movie is for you!  It's pretty stupid.

Zodiac -- David Fincher makes another averagely-good movie instead of the greatly-good ones I once thought he was capable of.  This one is kinda like Se7en, but worse... and with Jake "Vacant Stare" Gyllenhaal.

23 Feb 2007

The Abandoned -- Above-average horror movie.  Somewhat worth renting, though you could certainly do without.

Amazing Grace -- Michael Apted's story of a man attempting to end slavery in England gives us a different, 18th Century spin on that issue.  It's okay, a little too typ and sappy though.

The Astronaut Farmer -- I like the actors in this movie, I like the story, and I like the message--that if you do something creative in the "post-911 world" then you can get in serious trouble, no matter how harmless (remember the Mooninites?).  But the sappy sentiment in the movie is awful.  It's basically a dumb family movie.  But if you strip away that (very thick) layer, there's a cool movie underneath that someone else should remake for real.

Glastonbury -- A documentary about the last thirty years of this rock festival, featuring Bjork, Radiohead, Morrissey, Pulp, and others (many of the "others" suck: think Coldplay or worse).  A little too much like every other rock festival documentary to be especially entertaining.

Gray Matters -- Even Heather Graham kissing a chick didn't make this one worth it.

The Number 23 -- Ugh.  Aren't we sick of puzzles yet?  Apparently Sudoku and conspiracy theories pulled out of our asses has made us come to this.  Or is it that old thing of looking for meaning in a meaningless universe?  Anyway, if you can stand to watch Jim Carrey tell you how to add, subtract, multiply, and divide every number surrounding everything that's ever happened for the length of a movie, then between that headache is a thriller that's actually okay, Jim Carrey doing a good job too.  For the record, the secret number of the universe is, of course, 14.

Reno 911!: Miami -- If you like the TV show, you won't be disappointed.  The same basic comedy premises with a bigger budget and more funny explosions.

Starter for Ten -- Sometimes a pretty funny British comedy, sometimes a not-great American-style teen comedy masquerading as a pretty funny British comedy.  Its 1985 setting is just an excuse to play cool Cure songs.

16 Feb 2007

Breach -- Chris Cooper has popped up so often in supporting roles in the past ten years that he's become an annoying presence, but that's fixed with his starring role in this movie where he does a great job.  It's not the greatest movie ever, but it's a good thriller.

Bridge to Terabithia -- Maybe my memory of the book (and version I saw on PBS) is wrong, but I remember the magic being much more implied, and the real story being outside the forest.  But that ain't what's going on here.  Looks like Walden Media had some leftover bad CG from the first Narnia movie and wanted to make another one while waiting on Prince Caspian.  Still, it's not too bad, and AnnaSophia (yes, one word) Robb is good and in four years I'll say how hot she is.

Daddy's Little Girls -- Typ + Typ = Supertyp.  Tyler Perry reaches new heights of suckdom.

Days of Glory -- Snore.

Ghost Rider -- You know: not bad.  We're probably sick of unknown superhero movies by this point, but Nicholas Cage brings something new to the genre, and the Ghost Rider character is kinda cool a in cross between ghost from "Night on Bald Mountain" and Meat Loaf's Bat Out of Hell album cover sort of way.  You'll at least think it's fair to middlin'.

The Last Sin Eater -- Michael Landon, Jr. directs this Christian movie that looks like a cross between his father's Little House on the Prairie and M. Night Shyamalan's The Village.  Not really worth seeing unless you've limited yourself to movies with G ratings and faith-based messages.

Music and Lyrics -- Remake of this romantic comedy does everything it's supposed to do.  It's fine.

Orchestra Seats -- A French movie that I saw with German overdubs, so hard to follow, but seemed like kind of a typical thang, except that it's got Sydney Pollack.

9 Feb 2007

Breaking and Entering -- Dull as dishwater.

Hannibal Rising -- The fifth Hannibal Lecter movie, the second-worst (Red Dragon was just pointless).  It tries to tell the story of how Hannibal grew up to become a serial killer.  Expect something less than pop psychology.

The Lives of Others -- Pretty good German historical thriller.

Norbit -- Another black man dressed as a fat woman movie.

2 Feb 2007

Because I Said So -- Mandy Moore and Diane Keaton make me strangle myself in the theater.

Factory Girl -- Guy Pearce does somewhat okay as Andy Warhol, Sienna Miller is dull as Edie Sedgwick, and Hayden Christensen is a joke as Bob Dylan.  Crap.

The Messengers -- Perfectly average, perfectly fine ghost story with cute teenage girl.  Maybe in ten years when you want to revisit this genre in a marathon, you can pick it up then.  In the meantime, you've seen it before.

An Unreasonable Man -- A really good documentary about Ralph Nader.  It pretends not to have a judgment one way or the other, but obviously the filmmakers admire him; the anti-Ralph people (you know, the ones who say he ruined America because he hurt Al Gore's chance of winning in 2000) are pretty much shown as dumb.  But this is what Nader deserves: something to present him in a positive light after so many people have hated him for the wrong reasons.

26 Jan 2007

Blood and Chocolate -- Like a more cheesy, less action-packed version of Underworld.  All the boring history (and fake emotion), none of the fun.

Catch and Release -- Wrong in many ways.  Tries to be stupid when it should be sad, is sappy when it wants to be funny, etc.  A waste of time.

Epic Movie -- Like Date Movie, this one will be difficult to refuse... but you probably should.  Pretty much every joke follows this recipe: 1. Take a scene from an epic movie like Narnia.  2. Blend it with an MTV reference.  3. Let someone get hit on the head with a "bonk" sound effect.

Seraphim Falls -- Kind of a dull western with big-name actors.

Smokin' Aces -- Soderbergh for dummies.  Well, for bigger dummies.

19 Jan 2007

Alone with Her -- Somehow they got Colin Hanks (who does a good job here, considering) to be in a typ movie about a guy obsessively watching a girl on surveillance equipment.

The Dead Girl -- Fun to see Piper Laurie be a crazy mother again, but the rest of the movie (in spite of its good actors) is kinda dull.

The Hitcher -- An okay horror movie.  The killer is handsome and charming, so that adds a lil' som'in' som'in'.

The Italian -- One of the better runaway adopted kid looking for his mother movies.  But not excellent.

12 Jan 2007

Alpha Dog -- Based on the story of Jesse James Hollywood, this movie manages to be a bit entertaining in spite of itself.

Arthur and the Invisibles -- Luc Besson tries his hand at a computer animated movie, apparently after watching The Dark Crystal and Labyrinth one too many times.  It's not that great, but it's not typical kiddie crap.  Snoop Dog plays Bojangles.

Primeval -- Decent-enough thriller about a killer crocodile.  Don't let the "killer crocodile" thing allow you to pigeonhole this however as a "killer crocodile" movie.  They're trying for something more: Moby-Dick and Heart of Darkness and all that.  They don't reach it, of course, but for a movie that just as easily could be dumber to even try is saying something.  Will probably spawn sequels.

Stomp the Yard -- You Got Served part eight.

Tears of a Black Tiger -- If John Woo became cool again and did a spaghetti western with the set decor of a more gay Bonanza, this would be it.  The best movie playing this week, it's actually five years old, a Thai movie.

5 Jan 2007

Code Name: The Cleaner -- Dumb.

Freedom Writers -- Another "teacher who makes a difference" movie.

Happily N'Ever After -- Have we had enough computer-animated revisionist fairy tales with self-referential and anachronistic humor?  Yes, we have.

Copyright © 2007 We Like Media.
You may email Rusty W. Spell.