director: m. night shyamalan
I went into this movie praying that the twist ending wasn't that Bruce Willis survives the train wreck because HE'S ALREADY DEAD. I was very surprised by this film, it looks amazing and it's really well acted, it's best going into this not knowing too much about it, you will enjoy it more that way.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  November 2000 [link] |  recommend

undercover brother
director: malcolm d lee
Entertaining spoof/homage to blaxpliotation movies that is hit or miss but when it hits it's pretty damn funny. Eddie Griffin is hilarious and any movie that has Doogie Howser in it is worth anyone's $10.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  June 2002 [link] |  recommend

quantum of solace
director: marc forster
This movie has shooting from cars, shooting from boats, shooting from planes, breaking glass, Italy, fires, the desert, creepy global environmental organizations, British accents, a beautiful woman seeking vengeance, a handsome man (Daniel Craig as James Bond) seeking the same, and Bolivia! The more of these things that you like, the more you will like Quantum of Solace.
reviewed by: Eve |  November 2008 [link] |  recommend

mad hot ballroom
director: marilyn agrelo
Heartwarming, tear-jerking documentary about a ballroom dance program for NYC public school kids (who really do say say the darndest things!) See this movie, it will make you smile.
reviewed by: robin |  June 2005 [link] |  recommend 1 thumbs up

dark days
director: mark singer
Director Singer had never made a film before when he took his camera below Penn Station to document the lives of a group of people who called the area home. This a beautifully shot and well edited document, it never panders down of makes saintly its protagonists, a well done film with a noble agenda behind it.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  October 2000 [link] |  recommend

director: mark steven johnson
Irrational Affleck-hatas will be disappointed to learn that this movie derails on its own (by borrowing a little from last summer's SPIDER-MAN, a lot from 1989's BATMAN, and all too little from the Marvel comic book DAREDEVIL) before Ben has a chance to ruin it. Highlights: Colin Farrell proves he really wasn't miscast as Bullseye after all, Stan Lee reprises his role in SPIDER-MAN as an old man who is almost squished, and a new category of Academy Award is in order for the special effects expert who created Jennifer Garner.
reviewed by: matthewS |  February 2003 [link] |  recommend

the aviator
director: martin scorsese
Howard Hughes makes lots of expensive films, woos Hollywood starlets, and builds fleets of T.W.A. planes; if it weren't for that O.C.D. problem, he'd be the perfect man. If you can sit still for 166 minutes, make Marty proud and check out his epic; seeing Cate Blanchett's dead-on Katharine Hepburn impersonation alone is worth your time and money.
reviewed by: michele |  February 2005 [link] |  recommend

bringing out the dead
director: martin scorsese
The life of a paramedic in New York is rough (I had that pegged at 6) but fear not, this is a Martin Scorsese film, and redemption is just a blatant Christ figure away. This film is essentially a rehash of "Taxi Driver", just nowhere near effective.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  July 2000 [link] |  recommend

gangs of new york
director: martin scorsese
Watching this brutal, bloody picture about Civil War-era angloid thugs, you might start thinking about Scorsese's other movies about goons of other periods, and imagine history the way he seems to see it: wherein political development is always driven by the cruelest, greediest malefactors of any era, and wherein pain and suffering are facts of human existence that can never be diminished, only transferred from one population to another. If not, Daniel Day-Lewis will still wow you with his prodigious talents both for acting and for growing a remarkable mustache.
reviewed by: matthewS |  December 2002 [link] |  recommend

american psycho
director: mary haron
The first hour is a really funny social satire, the performances are great (especially Christian Bale in the lead) and the film recreates those go-go 80's with nauseating precision; I found the corporate guys who hang out with the lead character to be as scary as the lead character (who, btw is a serial killer). The film falls apart a bit towards the end and tries to make up for it with some gore: in short, this is a decent film that works better when it's trying to be subtle.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  July 2000 [link] |  recommend

director: matt reeves
This movie dished out enough of the creepy, eerie moments I love, that I feel compelled to forgive it's many shortcomings (folks who say the acting sucked SHOULD be saying, "Those folks did a totally fine job of playing the kind of people you generally love to hate). The ending has been creeping around in my conscience all day, and as a note to the eagle-eyed viewer, at the VERY end, keep an eye on the ocean in the background for a juicy visual hint-nugget about, um, 'stuff'.
reviewed by: eric w |  January 2008 [link] |  recommend

director: matteo garrone
A gritty view into the ruthlessness of Italian Camorra syndicate and the business of killing. Not exactly The Sopranos.
reviewed by: Eve |  October 2008 [link] |  recommend

x-men: first class
director: matthew vaughn
Welcome Aboard X-Men Flight Number Five. Passengers in our first class cabin will be watching a groovy sixties mutation with crazy pattern wallpaper, miniskirts, and just the right dash of erotic subtext between the two leads to inspire bored suburban housewives to write smutty stories for years.
reviewed by: jen |  July 2011 [link] |  recommend 1 thumbs up

charlie's angels
director: mcg
This film proves the old adage my grandfather always told me: Nice Butts + Karate = Box Office Gold. Bill Murray is wasted in a role that could have been played by anyone (including that lame other guy from Strange Brew) but any film that boasts a fight scene pitting Charlies Angels against Crispin Glover to the tune of the Prodigy's "Smack My Bitch Up" is okay by me: this flick is a lot of fun.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  November 2000 [link] |  recommend

the passion of the christ
director: mel gibson
Jesus wept. Allegedly a religious experience, "The Passion of the Christ" tunrs out to be a two-hour anti-semetic snuff film with dialgoue and caricatures that even Cinemax would be ashamed to show at 2am.
reviewed by: Stu |  April 2004 [link] |  recommend 2 thumbs up

director: menno meyjes
John Cusack is Max Rothman, a Jewish art dealer who takes an interest in would-be painter (and fellow WWI veteran) Adolf Hitler. Meyjes's film is thoughtfully speculative until its final ten minutes, when it abandons its meditations on the personal and political fallout of the first World War in favor of a gimmick better suited to MARVEL COMICS' WHAT IF? title: six million would have been spared if Hitler hadn't missed that one appointment!
reviewed by: matthewS |  August 2003 [link] |  recommend

director: michael almereyda
It looked like a bad idea on paper, but this most recent "Modernized Shakespeare" production is surprisingly effective and loyal to it's source material. Ethan Hawke may be the youngest actor to ever play the Melancholy Dane and he is quite good; the film gets a bit choppy at the end as things wrap up a little too quickly to reach it's inevitable conclusion (but we don't really ever need another 4 hour Hamlet) but this is a solid highly entertaining film.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  July 2000 [link] |  recommend

world is not enough, the
director: michael apted
You would think by 1999 someone would invent a supercomputer powerful enough to churn out a halfway decent Bond movie every other year, you look up "formula" in the dictionary and you'd see a picture of James Bond. This is one of the weakest entries in this now boring series; the plot escapes me though I think there's something in there about a stolen warhead (how many warheads are there on the planet anyway)..I have no idea why I went to see this movie.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  July 2000 [link] |  recommend

the last station
director: michael hoffman
Gosh, I never knew that if you point a camera up at tree branches in a forest, you can show how cool nature is. The only decent thing in this bad episode of Masterpiece Theatre about Leo Tolstoy (played with full beard by Captain Von Trapp) is Dame Helen Mirren who can still play sexy indecency better than any actress of any age.
reviewed by: jen |  December 2009 [link] |  recommend

miami vice
director: michael mann
reviewed by: adina |  August 2006 [link] |  recommend

insider, the
director: michael mann
An enjoyable throwback to the conspiracy films of the early 70's, at the heart of this film is a brilliant performance by Russell Crowe. Lot's of handheld and over the shoulder shots add to the paranoia and urgency in this engrossing story of a corporate whistle blower, the film runs out of steam in the last half hour but this is still something worth seeing.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  July 2000 [link] |  recommend

director: michael mann
Will Smith is pretty great and it looks great but this film is a little flat. It pretty much doesn't tell us anything we already didn't know about Ali; it's not without it's moments but they don't add up to a whole lot.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  December 2001 [link] |  recommend

a home at the end of the world
director: michael mayer
Yes, Colin Farrell is quite good in this lovely ensemble film that's all about the characters and their relationships over time. Yes, Colin Farrell is in a good movie.
reviewed by: jen |  August 2004 [link] |  recommend 2 thumbs up

director: michael moore
In his latest documentary on American HMO's, Moore mixes some dire case studies with some humorous forays to countries with universal health care (including Canada, natch) to illustrate Americans really have the bum rap when it comes to their health care, simply: for-profit health care kills people or shortens their lives because the less care they give, the more money HMO's make. Sure, he is still heavy-handed and occasionally crass, but you know what? Fuck subtlety - people should demand better.
reviewed by: adina |  July 2007 [link] |  recommend

bowling for columbine
director: michael moore
Michael Moore has made a smart, funny, multifaceted movie about guns, featuring conversations with everyone from Michigan Militiamen to a "COPS" television producer to Moore's (and my) fellow hinterlander Chuck Heston. Turning the camera on real people, he captures characters and events that audiences would find implausible in fiction -- like the Littleton, CO home security salesman whose scene is played for laughs until he becomes unexpectedly emotional over the Columbine shootings.
reviewed by: matthewS |  October 2002 [link] |  recommend

24 hour party people
director: michael winterbottom
Smart, funny and engaging, 24 HOUR PARTY PEOPLE has art-house cred and date movie appeal. Boy, are they going to sell a lot of copies of the soundtrack.
reviewed by: matthewS |  September 2002 [link] |  recommend 3 thumbs up

the trip
director: michael winterbottom
The funniest bits in this post-modern restaurant buddy road comedy set in the North of England and starring Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon are in the second half after the scallops. You will look at ABBA in a whole new way.
reviewed by: jen |  July 2011 [link] |  recommend

eternal sunshine of the spotless mind
director: michel gondry
A selective memory erasure technique goes awry in this logic flawed yet seductive romp through the lives of two lovers. Despite the sequencing errors, this thought provoking exploration of memory and its physical location within our minds has a gritty, non-sequitor realism one would expect from writer Charlie Kaufman.

Bonus third sentence: In "happyrobot" the movie, the part of Tim will be played to perfection by Mark Ruffalo.
reviewed by: nate |  March 2004 [link] |  recommend 9 thumbs up

the artist
director: michel hazanavicius
At a screening of this delightful silent film (with a music score), two audience members got into an argument before everyone around them hissed a very loud SHHHHHHHHHH. I liked this movie more than I thought I would, and the dog (a real dog, not a CGI dog) stole the picture.
reviewed by: jen |  November 2011 [link] |  recommend

good girl
director: miguel arteta
this was a funny and sad little movie about a texas "retail rodeo" employee looking for someone to "get" her and she succeds when she finds a kindred spirit in a co-worker to have an affair with. jennifer aniston is good in this role but is too "friends" looking although the wal-mart jeans and sweaters are excellent.
reviewed by: lisa may |  November 2002 [link] |  recommend

chuck & buck
director: miguel arteta
This film falls under the category of something so disturbing you're not really sure whether or not you're enjoying it. First this movie made me uneasy, then it got under my skin, then I decided I liked it a lot; it's sad and eerily funny and it has the creepiest theme song I ever had stuck in my head for days.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  October 2000 [link] |  recommend

time code
director: mike figgis
This film is trying to hard and not dishing out enough at the same time, yet I'm glad there are people out there who are willing to make films like this. The premise: shoot four interrelated stories (all 93 minutes with no cuts), have the actors improvise their dialogue, and then play all four stories on screen at once (so the screen is split like this +); unfortunately the end result is less exciting than the sum of it's parts, kind of like using expensive oil paints to make a picture of dogs playing poker.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  July 2000 [link] |  recommend

director: mike hodges
Jack is suffering from writer's block so he takes a job as a dealer at an exclusive casino and gets pulled into a much larger game. This is a well-paced, well-written film noir that uses voice over to great effect and gives us a morally ambiguous protagonist who we don't necessarily like but can't turn away from at the same time.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  September 2000 [link] |  recommend

topsy turvy
director: mike leigh
I'm a fan of Mike Leigh's work but I must admit I found this movie painful to sit through, the moments that made it worthwhile were far and few between. It's seems like such an insider film that you would have to be a major fan of Gilbert & Sullivan to derive any enjoyment from it, the rest of us are just in for a long night.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  July 2000 [link] |  recommend

director: mike leigh
Not much happens in a Mike Leigh film except these completely realized characters (after months of workshopping, they say) leap out at you and practically lick your face with trueness. What a pleasure just to watch these characters be.
reviewed by: adina |  October 2008 [link] |  recommend 1 thumbs up

man on the moon
director: milos forman
Jim Carrey delivers a two hour imitation of late comedian Andy Kaufman in a film which doesn't have a lot to say. It feels like you're watching a series of loosely related skits strung together leading up to a whole lot of nothing.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  July 2000 [link] |  recommend

monsoon wedding
director: mira nair
A delightful, fun, sweet, and visually intoxicating story involving the coming together of two families for a wedding in New Delhi, India. Wonderfully shot with amazing performances from an ensemble cast go see it now.
reviewed by: rich |  April 2002 [link] |  recommend

me, you, and everyone we know
director: miranda july
Imagine the scene from "LA Story" where the magic thing with them turning to kids and walking with things blooming all around them. This movie frightened me.
reviewed by: kristen |  June 2005 [link] |  recommend 2 thumbs up

super size me
director: morgan spurlock
The level of detail given regarding what it is exactly we do to ourselves when a minimum wage employee wearing a McCap and McSmock behind a McCashregister takes our McOrder is paralyzing the way finding out one has accidently eaten a live snail in one's salad. The movie made me laugh out loud a dozen times at the gallows humor of generations of our culture being killed one clogged artery at a time.
reviewed by: nate |  June 2004 [link] |  recommend 5 thumbs up

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