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dodgeball: a true underdog story
director: rawson marshall thurber
Great comedy comes from great pain, and Dodgeball lives up to the great Road Runner/Coyote tradition mixed with sports films by bringing us a simple story with a lot of funny bits and a super brave performance by Ben Stiller (for the wig alone he deserves an Oscar). Liking Dodgeball more than I thought I would, I laughed out loud (really), and Steve the Pirate rocks!!!
reviewed by: jen |  July 2004 [link] |  recommend 3 thumbs up


the ballad of jack and rose
director: rebecca miller
I totally dug this movie, the first with Daniel Day Lewis in years, even though the snobby New Yorker hated it (although I am a sucker for smoldering teen girl angst with gorgeous scenery and Daniel Day Lewis). After seeing it, I wanted to run off and work on an organic farm, but changed my mind by the time I got home.
reviewed by: robin |  April 2005 [link] |  recommend 1 thumbs up


the boat that rocked
director: richard curtis
I wanted this movie to be great but knew it was very unlikely. There is a beautiful underwater scene with records floating up through the flood waters that was worth the price of admission, or would have been if London had discount afternoon matinees and, though some performances were phoned in, the ensemble of lesser-knowns pulled this from the depths of comedy drudgery to make it an amusing and fun film about sex, drugs, and pirate radio, plus I have kind of a thing for Bill Nighy.
reviewed by: Eve |  April 2009 [link] |  recommend


school of rock, the
director: richard linklater
With the same wannabeatitude Belushi brought to "Joliet" Jake Blues, Jack Black plays Dewey Finn, a pub scene rock never-was who is sincerely and hopelessly devoted to the majesty of rock and pageantry of roll. The plot's dull -- Finn passes himself off as a substitute teacher at a posh private elementary school, and tries to recruit the kids to be his new backup band -- but the child actors are unusually tolerable, and Black's hammy sendups of rock postures are pretty funny -- especially for moviegoers who have known, loved, or been failed rockers themselves.
reviewed by: matthewS |  August 2003 [link] |  recommend 2 thumbs up


waking life
director: richard linklater
Now folks I'm about as sharp as a donut and all this movie really does is repeat a lot of stuff I sort of had figured out when I was fifteen. Pretentious and overbearing, it assumes that none of us have taken Philosophy 101 and actually need to be hit over the head with all this heaviness, somewhere between an Earthlink commercial and a bad MTV series (is there any other kind).
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  October 2001 [link] |  recommend


tape
director: richard linklater
While it won't necesarily replace the 97 minutes that Waking Life has already sapped from our short time on Earth, this is still worth checking out. Made on the fly, super cheap, on DV, this is an interesting film about the subjectivity of memory; Linklater works the camera to good effect, for something that takes place in one small room, things never seem too stale....the Hawke has landed folks!!!
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  November 2001 [link] |  recommend


real cancun, the
director: rick de oliveira
In this lurid documentary, sixteen pretty, college-aged party freaks share one fabulous beach house and the self-esteem of a single, thirteen-year-old fat girl. When I tell you that this is a great, great film, I bet you'll think I'm crazy, or stupid, or lying, and you'll skip it, which will be your loss, doubtin' Tom.
reviewed by: matthewS |  April 2003 [link] |  recommend 1 thumbs up


hannibal
director: ridley scott
While this film never gets as bad as I thought it was capable
of being it still manages to be pretty lame. There is no focus,
suspense, or a decent character to get attached to; towards
the end things start getting a little too over the top and the
movie tries to hard to make Lecter the hero.......pretty dumb
stuff.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  February 2001 [link] |  recommend


black hawk down
director: ridley scott
Not much in the way of characterization but this is a very well-made war film. Imagine the first twenty minutes of Saving Private Ryan as an entire movie and you pretty much get the grisly picture.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  February 2002 [link] |  recommend


gladiator
director: ridley scott
An entertaining film which works better as an action film than as a wannabe historical epic. To quote my
friend Pat, this films biggest problem is quite simply "not enough gladiating."
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  July 2000 [link] |  recommend


a good year
director: ridley scott
reviewed by: jen |  November 2006 [link] |  recommend


prometheus
director: ridley scott
Not only was the ending a confusing muddle, but the opening scene and most of the middle made no sense to me. I just wanted to see aliens taking out a bunch of quirky characters, and I was disappointed.
reviewed by: jen |  June 2012 [link] |  recommend


chicago
director: rob marshall
I don't know from "best," but with its high-energy hoofin' and hollerin', this period musical is certainly a very good picture. My neighborhood theatre projected it in the wrong aspect ratio, so everything looked squashed, and I could see the boom mics during about 30 per cent of the dialogue scenes, so I made a fun game out of trying not to let this get on my LAST FUCKING NERVE.
reviewed by: matthewS |  March 2003 [link] |  recommend


gosford park
director: robert altman
Altmanís finest ensemble piece since Popeye, less about the whodunnit than it's about the upstairs-downstairs class struggle. I feel I need to see it again to get the names down right, and Clive Owen really should be playing James Bond.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  February 2002 [link] |  recommend


prairie home companion
director: robert altman
There's something so complimentary about Robert Altman and Garrison Keillor doing a film together. Prairie Home Companion the movie is a fine little film Ė light and airy and dark and dry and corny all at once Ė with Altman and Keillor producing this lovely weaving of stories and characters (with the classic Altman huge assemble cast) based around their little radio show that time forgot.
reviewed by: rich |  June 2006 [link] |  recommend 3 thumbs up


china: the panda adventure
director: robert m. young
Itís hard to believe this is based on the true story of a 1930ís NY socialite and her unexpected expedition that brought the first live panda to the US - honestly Iíve seen Scooby Doo episodes that contain more intensity, believability, story structure not to mention better acting. The GIANT (itís IMAX) pandasí blissfully chomping on bamboo and the beautiful mountainous landscapes of China are the only enjoyable parts of this film- unfortunately the ďactorsĒ kept showing up and ruining everything.
reviewed by: rachel |  October 2001 [link] |  recommend


grindhouse
director: robert rodriguez & quentin tarantino
This double feature (plus previews) tribute to seventies trash cinema made me laugh out loud while I hacked up my right lung and went into a total moviegoing high. I don't know what else to say in the second sentence because sometimes things just go beyond words.
reviewed by: jen |  April 2007 [link] |  recommend 5 thumbs up


cast away
director: robert zemeckis
I really liked this film a lot, there's a minimal amount of
schmaltz (but it's still there) and the centerpiece of it is
essentially Tom Hanks doing a one man show. The end result
is an incredibly haunting story of survival and loss, definitely
worth checking out.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  January 2001 [link] |  recommend


contender, the
director: rod lurie
Never as important as it would like to think itself and never as lurid as some might think (hope), this is an entertaining film. A suspense filled potboiler which features yet another standout performance from Jeff(The Dude)Bridges as the President, proving himself to be our nations finest natural resources as he spins surreal comedic gold from a bit part.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  October 2000 [link] |  recommend


thirteen days
director: roger donaldson
It's no small task trying to determine what makes a Kevin
Costner fiasco, but if I had to do so in two words they would
be: Massachusetts accent. The rest of this film is very okay
(the actors playing the Kennedy brothers are pretty great),
there are genuine moments of suspense but they are
dragged down by long meanering scenes with limp dialogue
and the worst accent since Robin Hood.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  January 2001 [link] |  recommend


the recruit
director: roger donaldson
Al Pacino can afford that boat he's had his eye on, but I don't know how the rest of us are expected to squeeze some fun out of this dopey "thriller" that is so implausible it doesn't even make sense on that only-in-the-movies level. This year's CIA freshman class is conspicuously good-looking -- I bet not everybody who tails Special Agent Bridget Moynahan through the streets of D.C. is an Eastern Bloc spook.
reviewed by: matthewS |  February 2003 [link] |  recommend


genghis blues
director: roko belic
This movie is pure inspiration, plus a dash of fascination as well. Blind African-American blues singer Paul Pena hears Tuvan throatsinging on the radio in 1986, teaches himself how to sing 3 notes at once like the Tuvans, then goes to Tuva in 1995 to compete in the national throatsinging competition!
reviewed by: victoria |  March 2005 [link] |  recommend


day after tomorrow, the
director: roland emmerich
I am so angered by this movie that I have to write this review with just two words - IT SUCKS Ė not only for itís complete disregard for geographical accuracy but also itís lack of common sense. I know many movies have one or two items that just might not be explained but for an entire movie it is just unacceptable, I mean how the hell could a ship that is 2 blocks long navigate itís way through New York City streets to land on 42nd street and 5th avenue in the middle of a disaster without a crew Ė HOW! (Side note: Rich you really need to add some thumbs down options because this movie deserves at least one.)
reviewed by: kelly |  June 2004 [link] |  recommend 21 thumbs up


cq
director: roman coppola
This film by Roman Coppola made me say "neat!" in a very good way. Overall, more style than substance, but what do you expect with a movie set in France about a film editor who's stuck editing a "Barbarella"-type film?
(tamara)
reviewed by: tamara |  May 2002 [link] |  recommend


a beautiful mind
director: ron howard
I might be me, but Iím getting pretty sick of movies that come out at the end of the year whose only point in existing is to win awards. While competently made and performed I just couldnít connect with this, I have too many problems with this one to cover in two sentences.
reviewed by: JohnLawton |  February 2002 [link] |  recommend 1 thumbs up


hollywood homicide
director: ron shelton
This alleged comedy pairs Harrison Ford (as the veteran dick who's getting too old for this shit) with the poor woman's Keanu Reeves, Josh Hartnett. Such a waste -- if this laughless turd had fewer Motown cameos by two, more fruity suit-vests by four, and 600% more humor, it might have made a perfectly adequate episode of NASH BRIDGES.
reviewed by: matthewS |  June 2003 [link] |  recommend 1 thumbs up


cinderella man
director: ronny howard
No disrespect to Jim Braddock and his family; Russell Crowe's committed acting and physicality; Paul Giamatti who kos everyone else in his scenes; the great Angelo Dundee; or Paddy Considine who has the saddest eyes on the screen, but Cinderella Man is a girlie film.
reviewed by: jen |  June 2005 [link] |  recommend



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