Members Login
Username 
 
Password 
    Remember Me  
Post Info TOPIC: Movie Critics R Us


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:
Movie Critics R Us


I don't claim to be a critic, but I watch a lot of movies. This thread is for anyone who'd like to chip in a few thoughts on movies they've seen or discuss movies critiqued by others. I generally provide a brief synopsis, a few comments on films and a rating on a scale of 1-10.

The Clearing

Wayne Hayes (Robert Redford) is a self made millionaire and loving husband to his wife, Eileen (Helen Mirren), but their American Dream is shattered when a man named Arnold (Willem Dafoe) kidnaps Wayne and leads him on a trek through the woods to an uncertain fate. Tim (Alessandro Nivola) and Jill (Melissa Sagemiller) arrive to comfort their mother while FBI agent Ray Fuller (Matt Craven) spearheads the effort to get Wayne back safely. More a tense drama than a full blown thriller, the reason to watch this is the terrific performances by Mirren, Dafoe and especially Redford. The conversations between Wayne and Arnold demand your attention. We see a human side to the villain just as we discover Wayne isnít perfect either. Perhaps the children's roles are underwritten, but the central characters provide all the story we need.



Luck

Shane Bradley (Luke Kirby) is in love with his good friend, Margaret (Sarah Polley). Trouble is, she has a boyfriend so he canít tell her how he feels. Encouraged by his roommates, he places a bet on the first game of the 1972 Canada-Russia Summit Series and becomes hooked on gambling. Thus begins a downward spiral from which even Margaret might not be able to save him. A cautionary tale, but also a comedy, this is a well written film. It captures a time in which two nations were captivated by the eight game series, but you donít have to be Canadian or Russian to appreciate the movie. Hockey only plays a small part. Bradley gives a credible performance and Polley shows once again sheís a quality actress. This is the third interesting Canadian film from the past few years with gambling as the central theme, the others being The Last Casino and Owning Mahowny.



Before Sunset

Nine years after their memorable evening in Vienna in Before Sunrise, Jesse (Ethan Hawke) is promoting a best seller he wrote about it in Paris, and thatís where he meets up again with Celine (Julie Delpy). Jesse only has a few hours to spare before his plane leaves, so they stroll the streets and catch up on things. The chemistry is still there that was evident in the original and the dialogue is just as smart. Romance movies donít get any better than this and the sequel even manages to surpass the original, probably because the characters are more mature and have more life experiences to share. Iíve never been a big Hawke fan, but Delpy is truly amazing. If you enjoyed the first film, this is a must see. Hopefully there will be another instalment in another decade.



Silent Running

Freeman Lowell (Bruce Dern) is a botanist on an ecoship and itís his duty to tend to the small, onboard forest. Forests no longer exist back on Earth. When an order is given to destroy the forest and return home, Lowell does whatever it takes to save his labour of love, taking command of the ship and heading for Saturn. This is a must see for fans of science fiction. Is Lowell a hero or is he nuts? Heís certainly flawed, but dedicated. Dern carries the film. For the most part he only has two non-speaking drones to interact with. The director manages to provide these drones with personality though. The environmental message comes through loud and clear, although itís still one world leaders fail to embrace.



The Terminal

Viktor Navorski (Tom Hanks) travels to New York from Krakozhia but is detained at the airport when a coup ensues in his homeland. His passport is seized and he essentially becomes a man without a country. He canít return home and he canít enter New York. And try as he might, airport security chief, Frank Wilson (Stanley Tucci), canít pass this problem on to someone else. So Navorski lives at the airport. For months. And he manages to have a most improbable relationship with a beautiful flight attendant named Amelia Warren (Catherine Zeta-Jones). I found this movie to be very funny. Most of the humour is subtle and it only goes after a few cheap laughs. Hanks is very endearing. He put on some extra pounds for the role and created his own language. The entire movie plays out mostly on one enormous set. Steven Spielberg must have had great fun poking fun at political red tape, even if the premise is exaggerated. Sure, the movie has its cheesy moments, but I really didnít find myself minding them.



Iíll Sleep When Iím Dead

Davey (John Rhys-Davies) is an easy-going sort and small time drug dealer who catches the attention of Boad (Malcolm MacDowell) who loathes him and plots to teach him a lesson. This brings former gangster and Daveyís brother, Will (Clive Owen), back from the life of solitude heíd escaped to. Now heís back in London to exact revenge. This is a plodding gangster type movie with a film noir feel. Itíll more likely put you to sleep before its end. The payoff is hardly worth sitting through the build-up. We donít even learn much about the characters, their pasts, and are given little reason to even care about any of them.



Empire Falls

Miles Roby (Ed Harris) does what he has to to get by running the Empire Grill in the small town of Empire Falls, Maine, which has seen better days. He must deal with his irresponsible father, Max (Paul Newman), his bitter ex-wife, Janine (Helen Hunt), her fiancť and the man who expedited the break-up, Walt Comeau (Dennis Farina), an unhappy daughter, Christina (Danielle Panamaker), and the manipulative town matriarch who owns the grill, Francine Whiting (Joanne Woodward). Making a break from Francine so he can better provide for his daughter is what Miles would like to do, but it wonít be easy. Flashbacks involving Milesí mother Grace (Robin Wright Penn) and Francineís husband C.J. Whiting (Philip Seymour Hoffman) explain how the two families are inextricably tied together. An HBO mini-series based on a Pullitzer Prize winning novel, the format allows time to develop characters and do the novel justice. The all star cast does a wonderful job bringing the characters to life, Harris especially. HBO continually churns out quality films.



Shrek 2

Shrek (voice of Mike Myers) and Fiona (Cameron Diaz) are now two happily married ogres. Theyíre invited to visit Fionaís parents, the Queen (Julie Andrews) and the King (John Cleese), who are unaware that Fiona is now permanently an ogre. The King had a deal with the Fairy Godmother (Jennifer Saunders) that Fiona would marry her son, Prince Charming (Rupert Everett), and now sheíll go to great lengths to see that deal upheld, including hiring Puss In Boots (Antonio Banders), a cat assassin, to dispose of Shrek. If you liked the original, youíll enjoy this one too, which is just as witty and fun. People of all ages will get a lot out of it. The Puss In Boots character is a welcome addition to the cast. Great animated flick!



The Notebook
Duke (James Garner) reads a story to a fellow nursing home resident, Allie Calhoun (Gena Rowlands), who suffers from dementia. The story involves two young lovers, Noah (Ryan Gosling) and Allie (Rachel McAdams). Sheís from an affluent family, and heís working class, so her parents are against the relationship. Circumstances cause them to go their separate ways, but fate may have other plans. Chick flick. Women will love it, men will hate it. The story is simple and nothing we havenít seen before. The pacing is too slow, and itís too schmaltzy. And you know exactly how it will play out. But Gosling and McAdams somehow make it more bearable than it should be.



The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement

Mia Thermopolis (Anne Hathaway) has now completed college and her grandmother, Queen Clarisse Renaldi (Julie Andrews), is ready to hand over Genovia to her. Viscount Mabrey (John Rhys-Davies) tries to exploit an old clause that states a princess cannot take over the throne unless sheís married, and claims his nephew, Nicholaus Devereaux (Chris Pine), as the rightful successor. Parliament grants Mia thirty days to find a husband, so an arranged marriage is set up with Andrew Jacoby (Callum Blue). Mia must wrestle with whether marrying a man she doesnít love is worth the throne. Hector Elizondo returns as Joe, the palaceís head of security. Garry Marshall, please, please, stop directing films! Only the target audience of prepubescent girls could possibly enjoy this by-the-numbers sequel. The plot is ridiculous to begin with. I hope Hathaway gets better projects in the future because she is capable of carrying a film.



__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 359
Date:


Fantastic Four 


Just saw this movie last night...showed in 3 theaters and all were packed


 I read some of the comic books as a kid, I think they did the author
proud.


the digital animation/effects were fantastic...ha-ha....pun intended. I think
they could have established the characters a bit better, but managed to let us
know early on, the entire movie was the usual "cock" fight for the
pretty lady.  The human tourch was hilarious and added a much needed
lightness to the plot. 


Good fun and lessons for all ages 




-- Edited by twodogday at 23:40, 2005-07-10

__________________
The next time you feel like complaining.... Remember: Your garbage disposal probably eats better than 30% of people in this world.


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Infernal Affairs

Chan Wing Yan (Tony Leung Chiu Wai) has been an undercover cop for ten years and wants out. The only one in the force who knows his identity is SP Wong (Anthony Wong Chau-Sang). Yan has infiltrated a gang led by Sam (Eric Tsang), who knows there's a mole in their midst. Lau Kin Wing (Andy Lau) is a gangster who is a mole under Wong, but like Yan, he's also on the verge of burnout. Tensions come to a head and how things play out is far from predictable. A dubbed Hong Kong flick, soon to be remade by Martin Scorsese starring DiCaprio and Damon, this is polished and has a film noir tone. The script is smart, a little confusing at times, but you shouldn't get lost. I think it could have benefited from a bit more violence though.

thumbsup.gifthumbsup.gifthumbsup.gifthumbsup.gifthumbsup.gifthumbsup.gifthumbsup.gifthumbsup.gif

-- Edited by bawdy at 14:24, 2008-03-02

__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward
shu


Veteran Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 58
Date:

Mr. & Mrs. Smith

Probably the most overrated movie of all time... Basically the plot is exactly what the movie sounds like, a couple trying to kill each other. The reason I say "basically" is because that is precisely what it was- basic! The plot was totally under-developed... The action was lousy (You can get better watching a 007, Jackie Chan, or even a freakin Bugs Bunny movie!)... And the much-talked-about sex scenes, well let's just say that even I was not turned on...


Rating: errr.... 2   



-- Edited by bawdy at 19:13, 2005-07-13

__________________
Yo!


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Sweet Charity

Directed by Bob Fosse, this is the film version of the Broadway musical. Charity Hope Valentine (Shirley MacLaine) is a somewhat naÔve dance hall hostess who has been burned to many times from the wrong type of men she attracts. She longs to have a better job and to find true love, elusive as both may be. It also stars John McMartin as Oscar Lindquist, Chita Rivera as Nickie, Ricardo Montalban as Vittorio Vidal, and Sammy Davis, Jr. as Big Daddy Brubeck. The musical numbers are superbly shot. MacLaine is well cast and acquits herself well in the singing and dancing departments as well as in her comedic timing. Itís not your typical happy-go-lucky musical where everything ends up peachy keen, but it is very colourful and very of the sixties. At two and a half hours, it is overly bloated though.



Melvin And Howard

Melvin Dummar (Paul Le Mat) happens upon a man in the desert whoís been injured in a motorcycle accident. The stranger (played by Jason Robards) refuses medical treatment and just wants to be dropped off in Vegas. At one point he claims to be Howard Hughes, but he hits Melvin up for money before they part ways. Melvin returns home to his on again, off again relationship with his wife, Lynda (Mary Steenburgen). Money is always tight, but Melvin is always angling for one minor score or another. He seems to strike a big one the day a will supposedly written by Hughes names him as a beneficiary. The story focuses on Melvin, not Hughes and Le Mat is perfectly cast as the decent, likeable All-American everyone who keeps spinning his wheels, but never lets it get him down. Steenburgen won the best supporting actress Oscar for her role. Director Jonathan Demme portrays these characters tenderly instead of playing them for losers. Truly a great slice of life drama.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story

This is a biopic of Bruce Leeís rise to stardom-a true rags to riches story, only one with a tragic ending. Jason Scott Lee plays the title character he captureís Bruceís mannerisms and speech exceptionally well, and does a remarkable job in the kung fu scenes. Lauren Holly plays Linda, who Lee meets as a student and later marries. Itís an interesting story, although it does get the Hollywood treatment, and thus suffers in the accuracy department. I didnít care for the mystical dream sequences much either. The musical score enhances the film nicely, and the fight sequences are kick-ass.




-- Edited by bawdy at 19:10, 2005-07-13

__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

A Home At The End Of The World

Bobby Morrow (Andrew Chalmers, Erik Smith, Colin Farrell) faced family tragedy early and often in life. In high school he befriends an awkward boy named Jonathan Glover (Harris Allan, Dallas Roberts) and is accepted into his family, getting on especially well with Jonathanís mother, Alice (Sissy Spacek), even after she catches them experimenting with drugs, and sexually. Jonathan heads from Cleveland to attend school in New York where he settles in with a hippy chick named Clare (Robin Wright Penn). She loves him, but heís now openly gay. Bobby later joins them, forming an untraditional love triangle and family. The surprise here is Farell, who letís down his guard and turns in an inspired performance. Spacek is awesome as usual. The problem is the story. It failed to draw me in and Bobby remains an enigma to the end. Heís a kind soul, but what else is there to him? Does he have faults? And is he so sexually confused simply because he walked in on his brother and girlfriend having sex when he was young? Did Clare cure Bobby of homosexuality? Iím not sure the film knows what message itís trying to convey.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 123
Date:


shu wrote:

Mr. & Mrs. Smith
Probably the most overrated movie of all time... Basically the plot is exactly what the movie sounds like, a couple trying to kill each other. The reason I say "basically" is because that is precisely what it was- basic! The plot was totally under-developed... The action was lousy (You can get better watching a 007, Jackie Chan, or even a freakin Bugs Bunny movie!)... And the much-talked-about sex scenes, well let's just say that even I was not turned on...
Rating: errr.... 2   -- Edited by bawdy at 19:13, 2005-07-13




Thanks shu, I was thinking about going to see this, but maybe I'll spend my money on the 'Fantastic Four' instead!!! Whew

__________________
Do you really think Mr. Rodgers would have wanted us for neighbors?


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 123
Date:

The Aviator

I just watched this the other night.

I thought Leonardo Dicaprio (Hughes) & Cate Blanchett (Hepburn) did a great job, but the ending left me saying . . . What The F***?

I'm just glad I watched it at home instead of paying more to see it in the theater!!!



-- Edited by bawdy at 13:57, 2005-07-15

__________________
Do you really think Mr. Rodgers would have wanted us for neighbors?


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Hmmm...very strange. I think both The Aviator and Mr. & Mrs. Smith got great reviews and The Fantastic Four got trashed. It just goes to show you can't always go by what the critics say.

__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Danny Deckchair

Danny Morgan (Rhys Ifans) is eagerly anticipating a camping vacation, but his girlfriend, Trudy Dunphy (Justine Clarke) ruins his plans through a bit of deception. When Danny realizes Trudy isnít the one for him, he attaches helium balloons to a lawn chair and takes off into the air, gaining the attention of a nation. I donít want to give more than that away. It also stars Miranda Otto. This is yet another of those likeable, formulaic films with quirky people in a small town, with a central figure that brings improvements to that town. Britainís made them. Canadaís made them. This one is Australian. We should hate this movie, but somehow we canít. Itís just too charming, mostly due to Ifans.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Ice Men

Vaughn (Martin Cummins) invites a group of friends who grew up together to his cabin for their buddy Bryanís (David Hewlett) birthday. Jon (Greg Spottiswood) and Steve (James Thomas) arrive as expected, but Vaughn is irritated when his brother, Trevor (Ian Tracey) also shows up. Tensions flare up over the weekend and what was supposed to be a celebration turns out to be anything but. There was nothing special about this Canadian film, but as dramas go it wasnít bad. The characters are flawed, but they also have their redeeming qualities. The story unfolds convincingly and everything isnít wrapped up nicely with a little bow at the end as they are in sitcoms.



The Wiz

A ghetto version of the Frank Baum classic, starring Diana Ross as Dorothy, Michael Jackson as the Scarecrow, Nipsey Russell as the Tin Man, Ted Ross as the Cowardly Lion and Richard Pryor as The Wiz. This was pretty awful and it hasnít aged well. The music isnít very good and the musical numbers arenít very well directed. Diana Ross was too old to play Dorothy. Even the script is subpar. Stick with the original.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Singapore

Matt Gordon (Fred MacMurray) is an American who makes a living smuggling pearls out of the Far East. Heís met a fellow American named Linda Grahame (Ava Gardner) and theyíve fallen in love in Singapore and are set to marry when the Japanese attack. Gordon leaves Singapore believing Linda died in the raid, and he couldnít retrieve the pearls hidden in his hotel room either. Now five years later heís back to get his pearls, but he bumps into Linda, whoís been a victim of amnesia and doesnít remember her past. Chief Inspector Hewitt (Richard Haydn) is watching him like a hawk, and a local crime boss, Mauribus (Thomas Gomez), is intent on purchasing the pearls. MacMurray displays a calm, cool demeanour throughout in the classic film noir tradition. So what if heís a smuggler? He wins us over with his ability to wink at authority and to play cat and mouse with them. Gardner is beautiful, but not called upon to do much acting. The rest of the cast is solid. Not a great film, but enjoyable nonetheless.



Horizons West

Two brothers, Dan (Robert Ryan) and Neil Hammond (Rock Hudson) have just returned to Texas after serving in the Civil War. Dan falls for Lorna Hardin (Julie Adams) upon meeting her and takes an immediate dislike to her husband, Cord (Raymond Burr). While Neil settles in helping out at the family ranch, Dan sets his mind to acquiring a fortune by any means necessary, and it eventually falls to Neil to try to reel him in. This has the production values of a big western, and perhaps the makers had grand designs, but the plot is paper thin and the end result is an unsatisfactory film. Details are skipped over and the ease Dan has building an empire is not believable even if he was a general in the army.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Hostage

Jeff Talley (Bruce Willis) gets burnt out as an LAPD hostage negotiator so he moves to a less stressful job as a small town police chief, only to find stress building within his own family. Mars Krupcheck (Ben Foster), Dennis Kelly (Jonathan Tucker) and Kevin Kelly (Marshall Allman) are three punks who spot Walter Smith (Kevin Pollak) driving an Escalade, so they follow him home, taking Smith and his daughter Jennifer (Michelle Horn), and son, Tommy (Jimmy Bennett) hostage. They just happened to pick the wrong home to invade, and soon Talley is back in familiar territory negotiating a very sticky situation with a lot on the line. Taken as a whole, this is a slickly directed, entertaining action flick. Willis excels in this type of role. However, the plot is ridiculous, as his the Mars character, who ultimately ends up resembling something out of a zombie flick. The house has a security system that would be the envy of Fort Knox, and vents big enough for adults to crawl through. Why? Yet thereís no sprinkler system in the event of fire or smoke alarms even. Hmmm. The director is guilty of going for style over substance. Check your brain at the door for this one.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 15
Date:

We just watched Hostage the other night-


it was pretty good- we enjoyed it !



__________________


Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 15
Date:

Batman Begins

Where do I put all my thumbs?? A creative, thought provoking  and often humorous look at how Batman came to be. Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman add just a perfect touch of humor/cynicism to their roles.


Katie Holmes is....


Christian Bales is Excellent and believable!


I'd  give it 8 thumbs, but I don't have any.....


 



-- Edited by jojo at 17:55, 2005-07-18

Here are your thumbs, jojo:



-bawdy

-- Edited by bawdy at 18:25, 2005-07-18

__________________


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

I've only heard good things about Batman. My sister saw it last night and really enjoyed it. I doubt I can look at Katie Holmes again without linking her to her psychotic fiance.

__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Sleepover

Julie (Alexa Vega), Hannah (Mika Boorem) and a couple friends stage a sleepover after junior high lets out. Stacie (Sara Paxton) is one of the popular girls, and she challenges them to a scavenger hunt. The winners get the desired eating spot during lunch the next year in high school. The losers eat next to the dumpster. Of course, the cool girls have a few tricks in store to try to ensure victory. Steve Carrell appears as an inept security officer. This was a pretty bad film. Itís simply not funny and it sends bad messages to its teenage girl target audience. The plot is stupid and predictable and unrealistic. I hope Vega enjoyed her Spy Kids run, because I donít see her having much of a future as an actress.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Wilbur Wants To Kill Himself

Wilbur (Jamie Sives) and Harbour (Adrian Rawlins) are two brothers who run the used bookshop in Scotland that they inherited after their fatherís death. Wilbur has deep psychological problems mostly stemming from circumstances surrounding his motherís death, and is prone to suicide attempts. Harbour has Wilbur move in so he can watch over him. He also meets Alice (Shirley Henderson), a shy cleaning lady who sells books left behind at the hospital where she works in order to help supplement her income. Alice has a young daughter named Mary (Lisa McKinlay) to care for. Together they start to form a family and everyone seems to be better off for it. But Harbour receives some news that could change everything. This is a drama with very serious subject matter, but it also displays a winning sense of gallows humour. The pacing is slow and the film runs a bit too long, but the characters seem real and the actors do a good job. The outcome is both sad and hopeful, but it also is an easy cop-out of a situation that would have left everyone unhappy had it come to light.



King Arthur

Arthur/Artorius Castus (Clive Owen) and a band of his fellow Sarmatian Knights have been duty-bound to serve the Roman Empire for fifteen years and now these Knights of the Round Table anticipate their freedom, having put in their time. But Arthur must inform Galahad (Hugh Dancy), Lancelot (Ioan Gruffudd), Tristan (Mads Mikkelsen), Bors (Ray Winstone) and their mates that they have orders to carry out one last mission. They must get past the Woads, who are led by Merlin (Stephen Dillane), in order to rescue a Roman priest and his son from the invading Saxons, who are led by Cerdic (Stellen Skarsgard), as the Roman troops themselves have left England. They find an unlikely ally in Guinevere (Keira Knightly), who becomes invaluable to their plight. This is supposedly a more historical account of Arthur, not the legend of mythical and magical tales weíre accustomed too. And we get some good dialogue and epic battles, but also some inane dialogue that may be funny, but hardly believable for that time period. The knights are all good, although Bors seems more of an English bloke, not a Sarmatian. And I highly doubt any real character resembling the take no prisoners Guinevere existed in those days. The fight scenes become more numbing than enthralling. Owen and Knightly shine as they kick serious butt. Sure, the movie has its shortcomings, but itís worth seeing once.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Alexandraís Project

Steve (Gary Sweet) is ready to celebrate his birthday. Alexandra (Helen Buday) is his wife of several years, and she has something special planned, and Steve is in for a rude awakening. This is a small budget effort out of Australia with two very fine performances. The material is mature and probably capable of making many couples uncomfortable, particularly the men, depending on the state of their relationships.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 113
Date:

I need a review of the docu-movie "Supersize Me". Rick, can you give me a review? I have three people mention the movie to me in the past two days. It is an omen, I must watch it.

__________________
Joe, the other white meat


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Super Size Me

Documentarian Morgan Spurlock decides to eat nothing but food from McDonalds for a month, catching it all on film. Various doctors keep tabs on the effects the food has on his body, and the results surprise even them. Spurlock is an engaging subject and he uses his sense of humour to keep us entertained throughout. He also touches a bit on the eating habits of our children and Americans in general. There are a few slower moments, but not many. This should be required viewing in all schools at the very least.



__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Million Dollar Baby

Frankie Dunn (Clint Eastwood) is a seasoned boxing manager who operates a gym. He employs and ex-fighter named Eddie Dupris (Morgan Freeman), who lost his eyesight in one eye in his last fight. Frankie feels responsible, thinking he should have stopped the fight, and as a result heís afraid to put his fighters in a tough fight until heís sure theyíre good and ready. A girl named Maggie Fitzgerald (Hilary Swank) shows up at the gym one day, determined to convince Frankie to manage her. The problem is, Frankie doesnít train girls. Eddie eventually gives her a few pointers and her persistence with Frankie causes him to relent. And as Maggie begins an upward surge, a special bond forms between the two, and Frankie gets the kind of relationship he so longingly wants with his own daughter. This was so much more than a boxing movie. The main focus is on the relationships between these three likeable characters. The scenes with Freeman and Eastwood conversing make for great cinema. The voiceovers by Freeman make poignant observations. Swank is incredible here. You can see she put a lot of time in preparing for this role. Iím sure youíve all heard thereís a major plot twist. I wonít give it away, but it is deeply affecting. Director Eastwood uses sparse direction and leaves it to his cast to carry the film. Heís grown to the top of his field. A terrific movie.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Hide And Seek

David Calloway (Robert DeNiro) finds his wife, Alison (Amy Irving), in their bathtub with her wrists slit. His daughter, Emily (Dakota Fanning), walks in on the scene and is deeply traumatized. She spends time in an institution under the care of a colleague of Davidís, a child psychologist named Katherine (Famke Janssen). David decides to take a leave of absence and move out of NYC to a quiet country setting so he can spend time with Emily to help her heal. After he meets and begins a relationship with a woman named Elizabeth (Elizabeth Shue), Emily develops an imaginary friend named Charlie who likes to play games. But when Emily starts blaming physical acts on Charlie, David has more than his hands full. This movie starts off with the makings of a decent thriller. DeNiro begins giving a fine, subtle performance, and Fanning is equally good frightened and frightening-another great performance from this kid. But the movie jumps off the tracks in the latter half with a preposterous twist that given certain elements in the first half, itís not even realistic. Had they stayed the course, the heebie-jeebies might have saved the film. There werenít any very scary moments anyway, not even the obligatory red herring frights worked. The director gives the film a nice look, but he could learn a few tricks on how to scare people.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Eulogy

When Edmund Collins (Rip Torn) passes away, he leaves behind his wife, Charlotte (Piper Laurie). Three generations of the family gather for the funeral. Their son, Daniel (Hank Azaria). arrives with his daughter, Kate (Zooey Deschanel), whom Charlotte entrusts to give the eulogy. Their other son, Skip (Ray Romano), brings along his bratty twin boys. Overbearing sister, Alice (Debra Winger), totes along her husband and three kids who never speak. The fourth sibling is Lucy (Kelly Preston) who shows up with her girlfriend, Judy Arnolds (Famke Jannsen). Glenne Headly and Jesse Bradford round out the star studded cast. Calling this family dysfunctional would be an understatement and it doesnít take long for the claws to come out. Unfortunately, the material is not quite the same caliber as the cast. The film does have its moments though, but the biting comedy wonít leave anyone rolling in the aisle. Deschanel and winger provide the best performances. I think the movie would have been better served if it had even more edge.



The Man From Laramie

Will Lockhart (James Stewart) arrives in Coronado from Laramie with a load of supplies for the general store. But heís also here looking for the man who sold the guns to the Apache Indians who killed his brother. After Dave Waggoman (Alex Nicol), the hot-headed son of local land baron Alec Waggoman (Donald Crisp), tries to run Lockhart out of town heís even more intent on sticking around. Alec asks his ranch foreman, Vic Hansbro, (Arthur Kennedy) to watch out for his son. Vicís girlfriend is Daveís cousin, Barbara (Cathy OíDonnell), who runs the general store but longs to head east. Lockhart also has eyes for Barbara though, and he doesnít endear himself to Alec when he befriends Kate Canady (Aline MacMahon), the lone holdout in selling her land to Alec. This was a highly entertaining western highlighted by another patented Jimmy Stewart solid performance as an everyman who believes in his convictions, treating everyone fairly until they no longer deserve his respect. Waggoman isnít a stereotypical villain. Far from it. He has many of the same principles as Lockhart. Focus doesnít get distracted by a love story. New Mexico provides a fine setting and the film benefits from not being a Hollywood studio effort.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Bobby Jones: Stroke Of Genius

Jim Caviezel portrays Bobby Jones, the golf legend who battled his temper, physical ailments and the weight of carrying all of Georgia on his shoulders to become the best golfer who ever lived in this biopic. Claire Forlani plays Mary Malone, who will eventually marry Bob, and Malcolm McDowell is O.B. Keeler, a sportswriter who covers Bobby and becomes a friend. Harry Vardon (Aidan Quinn) is a golfer idolized by Jones as a child, and Walter Hagen (Jeremy Northam) is his biggest rival. The film is interesting if you donít know much of Jonesí history. I thought Caviezel was fairly convincing in his role. It drags on too long though and the golf scenes arenít all that exciting. This is best seen for the story of a remarkable man rather than for its cinematic attributes.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

The Cookout

Todd Anderson (Quran Pender) is selected first in the NBA draft and starts spending money like itís going out of style. Heís staging a family cookout at his new mansion in a gated community to celebrate. Wes (Jonathan Silverman) is his agent whoís set up a potential endorsement interview for the same day, so projecting strong family values is important. But things start to get out of hand. Britney (Meagan Good) is Toddís gold-digger girlfriend. Ja Rule plays a thug looking to profit from Toddís success. Tim Meadows plays a cousin who canít pass the bar exam. Queen Latifah is a security guard and Farrah Fawcett and Danny Glover are a married couple who live next door. This is a stupid comedy that plays on stereotypes and cheap jokes. Itís low on laughs and most of the characters are complete morons. Take a pass on this one.



The Girl In The Cafť

Lawrence (Bill Nighy) and Gina (Kelly MacDonald) meet by chance in a crowded cafť. It leads to another date. Lawrence is a workaholic advisor to top British officials, so heís never had much time for romance and his awkwardness shows. But heís charming and witty, so Gina accepts an invitation to the G8 summit in Reykjavik which Lawrence must attend. Ginaís strong convictions have Lawrence sweating under the collar soon enough as she irritates his colleagues. This is a timely effort by HBO Films, shedding light on African relief prior to this yearís Summit in Scotland. It sends a strong message, but itís a quality film on itís own merit. I thought Nighy was excellent in his role and MacDonald was pretty good herself. Itís not a traditional love story, but it comes off as convincing, and itís sparked by fresh dialogue. Yet another solid effort from HBO who routinely churn out better stuff than Hollywood.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Ship Of Fools

A German cruise ship travels from Mexico to Germany in 1932 after it takes on a bunch of refugees, who are faced with poor accommodations compared to the first class passengers. The Germans ensure no Jews are allowed at the Captainís table, while other passengers look for romance, trying to cope with loneliness. Willie Schumann (Oscar Werner) is the shipís doctor, who spends a lot of time in the company of La Contessa (Simone Signoret), a woman who is being deported and is bound for prison. Mary Treadwell (Vivien Leigh) is a bitter, divorced American woman who feels her best years are behind her. Bill Tenny (Lee Marvin) is a drunk who seeks the company of whores. David (George Segal) is an artist who must come to terms with the fact that he and his girlfriend, Jenny Brown (Elizabeth Ashley), might not be right for each other. Siegfried Rieber (Jose Ferrer) is a Nazi, who goes out of his way to make his opinions known. Julius Lowenthal (Heinz Ruhmann) is a Jewish man with a sense of humour about being ostracized by his fellow Germans. He converses a lot with a dwarf, Carl Glocken (Michael Dunn), who has his head screwed on better than most-especially on this ship. This Oscar nominated film provides a few grand performances, notably by Signoret and Leigh. Based on an acclaimed novel, it offers plenty of rich dialogue, and poignant observations about society in general. It deftly deals with sensitive issues. Some storylines are more intriguing than others. Overall, this was a pretty enjoyable movie.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

Resident Evil: Apocalypse

A killer virus has escaped from The Hive beneath Raccoon City and its residents are turning into killer zombies. The city is locked up and Alice (Milla Jovovich) returns to help a group of uninfected citizens led by Jill Valentine (Sienna Guillory), formerly a member of the Umbrella Corporations elite security force. To escape, theyíll first have to rescue the daughter of Dr. Ashford (Jared Harris). This was the obligatory sequel to the original, which was based on the video game. The plot is stupid, character development is non-existent, and the dialogue is flat. Every setting is tinged by a bluish light for some reason. It helps disguise the poorly choreographed action scenes, which become increasingly annoying, with quick cut shots being the order of the day. The film does have a sharp look at times, but there was no need to make this. And Iíll be damned if they didnít leave it set up for a third instalment. Good Grief.



The Door In The Floor

Ted Cole (Jeff Bridges) is an author and illustrator of childrenís books. He and his wife, Marion (Kim Basinger), are set to begin a trial separation, taking turns caring for their daughter, Ruth (Elle Fanning). Ted needs a driver due to having his license suspended, so he hires a student, Eddie OíHare (Jon Foster), to chauffeur him around and perform odd jobs. The Coles are haunted by memories of losing two sons in an accident, and Marion especially isnít as attentive as she should be towards Ruth. Eddie becomes a pawn in their relationship, but heís no fool. Mimi Rogers also stars. Jeff Bridges is superb. When will this guy finally get an Oscar? Basinger is also up to the task. Rogers bares all. Wow, is all I have to say about that. The Coles are certainly flawed and this is definitely not a feel good movie, but it has its lighter moments. The character of Ted is an interesting one. The story comes from a John Irving novel. As films of loss and struggling miserably to cope go, this one rings true.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward


The Omnipotent One

Status: Offline
Posts: 2696
Date:

The Manchurian Candidate

Ben Marco (Denzel Washington) is having dreams about events that took place during the Gulf War. Raymond Shaw (Liev Schreiber) won a National Medal of Honor based for his actions serving under Marco, but their memories are both cloudy about events that took place. Shaw is now a congressman and is being pushed as a vice-presidential candidate by his mother, Senator Eleanor Shaw (Meryl Streep). As Marco begins to pry into matters, he uncovers some disturbing things and a diabolical plot that was hatched many years ago. This Jonathan Demme film is an updated version of the John Frankenheimer classic. Jon Voight also stars as a senator Marco confides in. This is an entertaining movie all around with superb jobs put in by Streep and Washington. I still prefer the original with Sinatra but this fresh take is worth seeing as well.




Better Off Dead

Lane Myer (John Cusack) gets dumped by his girlfriend, Beth (Amanda Wyss), who falls for a ski jock. This leads to a few failed suicide attempts before Lane figures he might win Beth back if he can ski the deadly K-12 run. This is a comedy classic that I havenít seen since it first came out on video. I remember it being very funny, and it still is. This helped propel Cusack to stardom. Sure itís goofy and the characters are all quirky, but there are few misses in the humour department.




__________________
Rick's Psycho Ward
Page 1  >   Last »  sorted by
 
Quick Reply

Please log in to post quick replies.

Tweet this page Post to Digg Post to Del.icio.us


Create your own FREE Forum
Report Abuse
Powered by ActiveBoard