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The Last Kiss (2006)
'The Last Kiss' is one of the better movies dealing with adulthood
The Last Kiss; Michael is a frustrated architect on the brink of turning 30, who's spirits are dampened when he begins feeling as if his life is formulatic and planned. At a good friend's wedding, he meets Kim, a beautiful and charming college student. Michael's uncertanties with his fiancée Jenna lead to an unexpected affair with his new collegiate. However Michael is forced to deal with the consequences of his actions when his secret spills.
The Last Kiss is a very good movie, although you're likely to be depressed leaving the theater if you are under the age of 30. Smart, engaging and honest, along with incredible acting and dead-on dialogue add up to a penetrating, insightful melodrama that isn't afraid to pull the punches.
The movie is undeniably sad, but it's a certain type of sad in which you will probably find it hard to look away. The characters are interesting, flawed people just like you and me, and everyone stumbles onto something interesting from scene to scene.
4 from 5
4: Rise of the Silver Surfer (2007)
'Surfer' is a considerable improvement over the strained original
Fantastic Four 2: Rise of the Silver Surfer; This sequel picks up a little while after the original ended, where the group was revealed to the world as a newly formed group of popular heroes. This time, it's a considerable time after, and the foursome have their own portion of a building, shaped like a giant 4, in New York City. After a funny, refreshing re-introduction with our heroes, we learn that Susan and Reed have had some issues in the planning of their wedding, which the public goes insane over. However, what seems like it could be finally tying the not is interuppted by the shocking appearance of the Silver Surfer, which Reed suspects is linked to bizarre occurrences previously around the globe. The foursome joins forces with their previous villain, who seems to have an agenda all his own, in order to bring down this mysterious new villain.
Fantastic Four was a box office success, but a critical and general audience failure. Still, it's no surprise that this sequel was churned out by Marvel almost two years later. Thankfully, you can step off the edge of the cliff. 'Surfer' is a considerable improvement over the original in just about every way. It's slicker, louder, funnier, more creative and with better special effects and a better story.
Everyone seems to be having a funner time making this when compared to the original. 'Surfer' has frequent doses of light humor and touches. Performances are better and less stiff here, particularly for Alba. Evans, as in the first film, is the one who pops the humor flashbulbs. The re-introduction of the foursome is probably the best part in the film, and 'Surfer' gets a good, although stretched, gag about a switching powers incident. This film does have a problem, however. It aims for a younger age range, and this plays as a fault for the film. Some of the sequences seem down-played, as they feel as if you could have been bigger, and a little bit better. However, most people at any age will have fun with these heroes. 3 from 4.
'Daredevil' is flawed, fast, dark and fun
Daredevil; An accident as a child leaves the inspired, young Matt Murdock completely blind in both eyes. Fast foreward about 30 years and you get Ben Affleck as a smart, brooding lawyer living in New York by day. However, the night brings out a different part of Murdock, as he fights crime in a red suit, and calls himself Daredevil.
Murdock's life gets a little more complicated as Elektra enters his life. An encounter at the coffee shop blossoms into love. However, when Kingpin hires the menacing Bullseye to kill Elektra's father, Elektra pins the crime on Daredevil, and seeks vengeance.
Daredevil is based on the popular Marvel comics.
Anybody who read these comics probably won't care about the films flaws, because even my mind occasionally slipped off them and onto the slick, energetic action sequences. The main problem with 'Daredevil' lies in the camera, which darts around far too much, making far too many of the shots spastic and incoherent. This flaw makes the action sequences less memorable and exciting then they should be. However, 'Daredevil' delivers on a popcorn blockbuster scale, which is exactly what it aims for.
Affleck portrays Daredevil decently, however lacks some of the needed sexual charisma without the mask. Garner seems to be having a lot of fun as Elektra, flipping off walls and slashing her sei's. Colin Farrel also seems to be having fun with the role of Bullseye.
'Daredevil' has some problems with pacing and direction. However, it has a dark atmosphere, fast and fun action sequences and a wonderful sense of humor about itself. Highly entertaining. 3 from 4.
'Vacancy' is skillfully made, tense and surprisingly scary
Vacancy;; Vacancy opens as a typical horror film, following a soon to be divorced couple, Amy and David Fox, driving down a winding road, in the middle of nowhere in the middle of the night. Car troubles lead them to an abandoned motel where the manager informs them the mechanic will be back early in the morning. He seems friendly at first, and offers them a discount on the Honeymoon suite. Amy is resistant, but David convinces her.
Amy's first impression of the Motel was right on target, as a series of creepy events lead David and Amy to watch a video tape in which various guests at the same hotel are murdered. Soon after, David finds hidden cameras in the vents. Suddenly, the lights go out, and David and Amy must fight to find a way to escape... or end up getting slaughtered on tape like everyone else.
I am an avid horror movie fan, although lately I have run into the problem of not getting scared during these so called "scary movies." I am pleased to report, not just to horror film fans, but movie fans alike, Vacancy is actually scary. And that is just about the biggest compliment a movie such as this could get.
Throughout the 80 minute running time of Vacancy, I jumped a few times, gasped once or twice, and had white knuckles for almost the entire time. Luke Wilson and Kate Bekinsale give good performances as the bickering victims, and direction is particularly well-done. Director Nimrod Antal makes a wise choice, veering from torture, blood and guts, and relying mostly on putting these characters we care about in taut, tense situations.
Vacancy is a fun, frightening horror movie. 3 from 4.
'Pride' picks up every sports cliché as it pops along.
Pride; Pride focuses on a determined man named Jim Ellis who has felt that, for his entire life, his race has kept him from fulfilling his biggest dream of being successful in swimming. He begins a team for troubled black teens at a local sports club in Philadelphia. His team learns the value of teamwork and commitment as they break racial barriers.
Pride is no different than the other inspirational sports movie "based on a true story" that you've seen 8 times already. Honestly, there isn't one event in this movie that you can't see coming. That said, It still delivers good performances and if you're into this type of movie, you'll probably get what you were looking for.
Pride also suffers from it's lack of constantly-moving pace. You might get a scene where something exciting happens, but then have to endure 4 or 5 scenes of people discussing something exciting that just happened. And it's not an exactly what you want in your movie. 'Pride' is as generic as it's title, but it has some good performances, writing and a soothing message. 2.5 from 4.
Epic Movie (2007)
'Epic Movie' is an amusing mixed bag
Epic Movie;; There's another ______ Movie in theaters, and this entry pokes fun at movies popular in reputation and at the box office, including The Chronicles of Narnia, Charlie and the Cholcolate Factory, and many more. Our four main characters are brought together by four funny opening sequences, each receiving a random ticket to Willy Wonka's chocolate factory. When they discover he's really planning on using their body parts to make candy, he locks them in a house, where Lucy wanders off and finds a Magical warbrobe leading to the secret land of Gnarnia. The others soon follow suit, and are caught in the middle of an ongoing war between the White Bitch and the rest of the creatures. They are called to unite and defeat the White Bitch and rule Gnarnia with peace.
I know my description of the plot makes it seem like the movie actually has an actual plot. And it actually doesn't. In any sense of the word. But then again, Scary Movie 1,2,3,4 and Date Movie didn't have much of that either, so those who will attend this movie know what they're getting themselves into. 'Epic' is a plot less, aimless, pointless feature, but it's also quite amusing.
In comparison to 'Date Movie', 'Epic' does a much better job at literally making fun of the movies it promises to make fun of. It doesn't just make fun of the movies. It makes fun of the characters and distinct pieces of scenes, and even gets a few jokes in about problems Hollywood has, such as noticeable stunt person.
'Epic' starts off to a surprisingly hilarious beginning, retains it's hilarity for awhile, then loses some steam once we enter the wardrobe, although the entire picture is uneven. Some jokes work, others don't. Some scenes work, others don't. But as a whole the movie hits the mark more than it misses. So to sum things up: From a cinematic viewpoint, 'Epic Movie' is below the mark. But for this genre, it meets the standards and delivers what it promises, for the most part.
2.5 from 4
Saw III (2006)
'Saw III' isn't a focused entry into the series
Saw 3;; Jigsaw is back. The third installment picks up where the second left off, where we learned Amanda is part of Jigsaw's game. This time, she is appointed as his apprentice. This time, Jigsaw kidnaps a doctor to perform surgery on him in order to keep him alive, while Amanda kidnaps an unlucky man and puts him through an extremely twisted test.
I really liked the original Saw. I thought it was clever and atmospheric. Saw 2 retained a decent amount of the same elements while pumping up the gore factor. The problem with Saw 3 is how far it veers off course from the original two. Installments one & two had their share of gore, but didn't rely on the gore to make the movie. Saw 3 is all about gore shock-value. And I don't mean that in a complimentary fashion.
The plot literally feels like an excuse to string together a handful of shocking, gruesome death traps. The director has no intention whatsoever to keep the series ideas going, veering so off course, and paying so much attention to how much blood can spill and how many bones they can crack, you feel like you're strapped into a chair in an execution room, seeing person after person get brutally slaughtered.
Saw 3 does have it's strengths. The twist in the final sequence is surprising and satisfying, although it's an alarmingly weak set-up for the next installment. Acting is solid, and the film does have some creepy, well-done flashback sequences.
The beauty of the original Saw film was the gimmicky set-up was pulled off with ease. The second film had it's weaknesses, but improved on the plot of the original. The third film lacks focus on what originally made the Saw series a box-office smash. It focuses on what body part will get ripped off, burned, or torn apart more than it focuses on plot, direction or acting.
2 from 4.
'Jawbreaker' is not a complete success, but on a dark comedy level the film works
Jawbreaker;; There's always that group at rule the school. At Reagan High, it's the foursome, Courtney, Liz, Marcie and Julie. The plot is set in motion on the morning of Liz's birthday, when Courtney, Marcie and Julie break into her house, shove a jawbreaker in her mouth and lock her in the trunk. But their harmless prank goes horribly wrong when they discover Liz has choked on the jawbreaker. The rest of the running time involves the girls trying to cover up the murder and bribing a nerd to keep her mouth shut.
I am a fan of teen movies and black comedies. Assuming Jawbreaker falls into both of those genre's I was expecting to adore the film. The problem with 'Jawbreaker' lies in the fact that the conflict is set into motion within the first 5 minutes, leaving the rest of the film running of low gas. But it offers enough one-liners, laughs and style to make up for the flaws.
Performances are good around, and a keen sense of the bitchy high school girl stereotype is cleverly constructed here. After all, everybody has a Courtney in their life. She's the girl who loves to be feared, and MCGowen does a great job pulling her persona off.
3 from 4.
'Barnyard' is undeniably aimless, but frequently hilarious and hugely energetic
Basrnyard; When the farmer goes away, all the animals in the barn sing, dance and behave like humans. Our main character is Otis, a care free cow whose father, Ben, is the leader of the animals. When Ben dies defending the animals from a pack of vicious coyotes, the group nominates Otis as their new leader, and Otis is about to learn what he's really capable of.
2006 has been jam-packed with animation after animation, most of them knock-offs. And 'Barnyard' certainly has it's flaws. The plot is aimless, and eventually runs thin. Some of it is taken from 'The Lion King'. But due to tons of energy, non-stop laughs and good voice-over, this Barn runs smoothly.
Writer-Director Steve Oedekerk has a gift for setting up gags and pulling off jokes, setting it apart from a dozen other animation pieces. Like I said, humor is what 'Barnyard' has going for it. The laughs come fast and flawlessly, and nearly every single one is pulled off.
Previously stated, the movie is aimless and plot-thin, and some parts of the film are knocked off. But it has enough laughs, splash and fun to keep audiences entertained during the slim running time. 3 from 4.
'Venom' doesn't even qualify as B-grade horror
Venom;; The Plot: Set in the creepy, ugly swamps of Lousiana, this limp slasher follows a group of teens who treat local Ray as inferior. He's the town creep, and nobody bothers with him. One night, a mysterious suitcase is dug up and placed in the backseat of a car, which eventually gets into a car crash with Rays truck. As Ray attempts to rescue the poor old woman in the front seat, he goes back in to retrieve the suitcase, but the car gives out, slipping off the bridge into the lake. That's where the story begins. It turns out the suitcase contained snakes, possessed by the evil souls of dead people. When these snakes infest Ray, he goes on ramphage through the swamps, killing everybody who treated him poorly.
The good stuff: The only things I can come up with are direction, for one. Jim Gillsepe is better than this material, and does the best with what he has. And I have to say I appreciated the voodoo-spin they put on the typical slasher. I'm not by any means saying it's original, but it does try to shuffle the deck a little.
The bad stuff: Pretty much everything else. Character development is weak, acting is weak, writing is weak, execution is weak, and the story itself is just dreadful. And I'm not one of those slasher haters, by any means. I appreciate most low-grade slasher/horror flicks for what they are. But Venom doesn't push any of the right buttons.
The verdict: 'Venom' is pretty much the cinematic version of a toilet; It is filled with crap, and eventually just gives it u, flushes it. Only rent if your'e bored on a rainy Sunday afternoon, if you have no cable or computer.
Final Destination 3 (2006)
'Final Destintation 3' is a clever guilty pleasure
Final Destination 3;; High school senior Wendy and several of her friends are at their graduation carnival. But what starts like a fun night doesn't turn out the way they planned. Upon boarding the park's most terrifying roller coaster, Wendy has a creepy vision of the ride derailing, killing her and everybody else on it. She freaks out, so her and a few others get off with her. And, you guessed it, the ride does end up crashing.
The ones who escaped think they have it easy. But death is angry, and stages all sorts of traps to kill these teens off, one by one. This is one of those fun, bloody horror movies that delivers exactly what it promises.
As a trilogy, I like the FD movies. The first one was, surprisingly, my least favorite. Judging by how creative it's sequels are in the traps, the first doesn't deliver as much fun. I love the second one. The set-up for each murder is completely ridiculous, but it understands that and it's a blast. The third has a mix of the creepy atmosphere of the first, and the panache fun of the second.
This really is gruesome stuff. But it's not stomach turning gruesome, because it almost seems as if it's played for laughs, so you can probably handle it.
The third FD still falls right in the guilty pleasure category. But it's a guilty pleasure that is consructed with a lot more craft and creativity that other horror remakes out there today. Directing keeps things atmospheric, while acting is typical horror. The writing is occasionally hokey, dialogue-wise, but the kills in this movie and the sequence of events leading up to them are clever in their own way.
3 from 4.
You, Me and Dupree (2006)
'Dupree' does have it's share of warm and sweet moments, but in the end, is uninspired claptrap
You, Me and Dupreep; Newlyweds Carl and Molly have nothing in their way of happiness. However, they get a surprise when Randy Dupree, his best friend since childhood, moves in, due to a lack of job and a home. What starts as a harmless house guest becomes a friend who overstays his welcome in far too many ways.
Even the title comes off as a 70's comedy. All of this is dated and stale, which you could probably tell from the previews. The only real thing injecting gas in this sputtering comedy is Owen Wilson's childlike vibe, which ran thin after the first few scenes.
The main problem with the movie doesn't exist in the movie itself. It revolves around the fact that three first-rate actors are stuck in this third-rate film. It's lack of laugh-out-loud moments is truly stunning, especially in comparison to Owen's last summer comedy Wedding Crashers, or even his brother's recent goofy comedy, My Super ex Girlfriend.
Even some of the slapstick fails, which presents a true problem for a movie that seems to realize it can't be driven by dialogue comedy. The most positive thing I can say about the movie is this: it is warm, and sweet. But that's not what the movie is being advertised as, and anybody going in expecting an Owen Wilson comedy should just turn around before finding their seat.
5 from 10.
Lady in the Water (2006)
This 'Lady' doesn't make much sense, but it's this mystery to figure it out that makes it so compelling
Lady in the Water;; Superintendent Cleveland Heep rescues who he thinks is just a regular girl in the pool. But as mysterious events occur, he soons begins to realize that him and several tenants are characters in a scary bedtime story, and the lady isn't a regular lady at all. She's a narf. And there are a variety of different creatures out to get her. And it's up to Cleveland and the tenants to figure out their purpose and get the lady back to her world safely.
I like M. Night Shamalyan. I appreciate what he does. He attempts to offer moviegoers a different night at the movies, and that's the level I've enjoyed all of his movies. 'Lady in the Water' is no different.
'Lady' is twice as good as The Village, as good as 'Signs' but falls short of 'The Sixth Sense'. And what you need to know: 'Lady', more than any of Shamalayns others, is a movie that when you think about it more, it makes less sense. So you need to just go with it.
As previously stated, 'Lady' really doesn't make that much sense. It's a lot more complex that other options out there, but it surprisingly plays as one of the movie's strengths. The movie is so compelling, because it gets more complex as it unfolds, and it makes you want to try and figure it out.
The cinematography is beautiful. The acting is solid. The direction is fantastic. 'Lady' isn't a completely successful movie, but it hits more than it misses.
7 out of 10.
My Super Ex-Girlfriend (2006)
'Super Ex Girlfriend' is screwball, well-executed fun
My Super-Ex Girlfriend;; Matt Saunders(Luke Wilson) is uneasy when he meets Jenny Johnson(Uma Thurman), who comes off to him as a shy, needy librarian type. But Jenny has a secret.
Everybody in the town knows G-Girl, who constantly manages to single-handedly keep New York City from trouble. Little does anybody know, G-Girl is really Jenny Johnson.
When Matt introduces Jenny to his long-time work friend Hannah(Ana Faris), Jenny begins to act jealous and controlling, which leads to him dumping her. But that upsets her greatly, so she decides to get her revenge, using her powers to make his life a living hell.
My the final sequence, 'Girlfriend' gets out of control. But it's this refreshing, weird and funny premise that this summer needs. It's the perfect comedy to beat the summer heat.
For a film that is so silly, it's surprisingly well-executed. Everything gels, and director Ivan Reitman catches us off-guard with moments of absurd hilarity.
Performances are likable all around, with Uma Thurman portraying G-Girl with believable ease. Luke Wilson is well-cast as the guy in over his head. Writing is solid, and direction keeps things breezy.
'My Super Ex Girlfriend' is a thoroughly engaging, screwball comedy that's driven by a silly premise that works.
House of Wax (2005)
'House of Wax' is a fairly good remake, well-made and with tons of energy
House of Wax;; Since the plot didn't seem to be the main focus while being filmed, i'll make this short and sweet: A group of collage age kids are side-tracked in a small town, where a wax museum draws their curiosity. Upon entering the museum, they realize there's a reason the figures are so lifelike, and that the entire house- the floors, the furniture and the figures- are made of wax, and only wax. Things start to get deliciously creepy as they encounter Bo and Vincent, a pair of sadistic murderers that kill intruders and turn them into wax.
The fun part of these movies is trying to figure out who is going to die next. House of Wax is fun for the same reasons. It's a violent scream-and-chase film that will deliver the goods for the people who are into this sort of thing.
Chad Michael Murray and Elisa Chubert fit the bill as our two heros in the film. The rest of the cast is typical, even Paris Hilton, who does exactly what this role asks of her.
Week after Week, we are submerged with remake after remake. House of Wax is one of the better horror remakes. Funner and more stylized than last years joyless Texas Chainsaw Massacre and this years Amnityville Horror, it's a cut above most in the genre. As stated in the headline, this movie is well-made and energetic.
One of the main reasons to sit through the not-useless but still slow and boring set-up scenes is once it gets to the slash, it doesn't let go. And the sizzling grand finale is a reason to stick it out through Paris's gruesome death scene. This scene alone is one of the most stylistically accomplished moments on screen this year.
The Bottom Line: 'House of Wax' isn't very good, but it's well-made, stylish, violent and will deliver for the audience it was made for. 3 stars.
X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)
'The Last Stand' is an eye-popping fantasy action extravaganza
X Men 3: The Last Stand;; The story follows partially around the resurrection of Jean Grey. Magneto seeks her help to join him in battle. The current battle Magneto is fighting is again with the U.S. government who has discovered a "cure" for mutancy. But when the military begins using this cure as a weapon against mutants, a battle is set to be fought, against the other side of the X Men, led by Storm and Wolverine.
I had fun with the first film, to an extent. It was entertaining, but I questioned the future of the X-Men series. X2, which gained critical praise when first released, was too over-exaggerated, and too incoherent. And here comes X3: The Last Stand, which is surprisingly my favorite of the three films.
What I truly enjoyed about this movie was it really takes a chance and shakes it up. Everybody here is really emotionally pumped and tense. Director Brett Ratner injects a great amount of energy and splashy effects into the series, and while some die-hard comic fans won't be impressed, it should manage to work as an action extravaganza for the general public.
I should think they made this movie assuming it will be the final installment, but considering the box office sensation it has become, i wouldn't be surprised if we see yet another X-Men installment. And personally, the best praise I can give 'The Last Stand' is this: It made me want another film.
X-Men: The Last Stand;; 3.5 from 4.
In 'Click', not everything gels, but it's elaborately clever and surprisingly heartfelt
CLICK;; Sandler portrays Michael Newman, an over-worked architect who puts work before his kids, 7-year old Ben and 5-year old Samantha, and his wife Donna. But hi entire world is about to change when Michael goes out in search for a universal remote.
This is where he meets oddball Morty, after going through the WAY BEYOND doorway in Bed, Bath & Beyond. Here Morty gives him a device that allows him to revisit any part of his life, pause or fast forward. What seems to be a life-saver ends up fast-forwarding through large periods of time on it's own, and Michael realizes he's missing out on life itself.
You'd think Sandler & Co. couldn't pull off punchy drama. I mean, 'Click' is being advertised as a comedy. And yes, it has it's comedic moments. But for me, it excelled better as a life-lesson drama. The reason, I believe, is the funny part of the premise is a bit too gimmicky.
As previously stated, not everything gels in 'Click'. Both halves work. Whether they work together is a good question. But 'Click' is more cleverly done and heartfelt that anything Sandler's done in the past. 'Click' shows us there's much to be appreciated in your life, like family and friends. So let those people know you love them.
3 out of 4.
'Tokyo Drift' is trashy, stupid and fun
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift;; Lucas Black steps into the drivers seat as Sean, a teenager who seems to always be in trouble with the law for reckless driving. After yet another smash up, he's sent to live with his incoherent father in the low-rent part of Tokyo.
Sean quickly gets caught up in the cool, underground world of Drift Racing,(where the driver hits the emergency brake and accelerator at the same time. causing the car to slide). Han, a member of the underground, teaches him the art drifting. However, things get complicated when Sean falls for Neela, which angers her drifting hotshot boyfriend, DK (Brian Tee), or the drift king.
In the world of racing, it's do-or-die.
Once we get past the fact that 'Drift' has basically no plot, it's pretty entertaining.
I wasn't a big fan of the first F&F movie, I actually liked the second for what it was, and the same goes for this installment: It's completely unnecessary, but for what it attempts to be, it succeeds in doing so. As one would expect, the racing is terrifically thrilling, possibly more so this time around.
Acting-wise, the film surprisingly improves upon it's predecessor. Writing could have used some help, but nobody I know see's these films for the clever wordplay.
3 from 4.
Superman Returns (2006)
'Superman Returns', to put it simply, comes up short
Superman Returns;; The plot has Superman returning to Earth after disappearing five years earlier, without any explanation. He heard that astronomers discovered what's remaining of Krypton, his home planet, and he simply wanted to go and see if it was true for himself.
In doing so, he left his romance with Daily Planet reporter Lois Lane (Kate Bosworth) out to dry. He didn't even say goodbye. Meanwhile, Lois was so upset at being dumped that she wrote an artice about why the world doesn't need Superman and won a Pulitzer for it.
Meanwhile, master crook Lex Luthor has used Superman's absence to plot his criminal empire. Looking for advanced alien technology, he's even burgled our hero's Fortress of Solitude at the North Pole. There he takes crystals from Krypton, and plans to build his own continent in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, which would result in the sinking of the America's. It's up to Superman to save the world, yet again.
By the end of Superman, I'd realized something: Throughout the 150 minute running time, I had only about 20 minutes of fun. And for a superhero movie, that presents a big problem.
With a budget of nearly 260 million, one should expect dazzling special effects, which it does, for the most part. The sequence pre-Supe's return has him rescuing a plummeting jet on which Lois is a passenger, and it's truly seamless. Also when Lex's continent grows up through the middle of a boat on which Lois and her son are aboard. It really is neat stuff. But they spent too much time of the flash and not enough on the fun.
There are great superhero movies, like Batman Begins, or Spider-Man 2. There are the others on the other half of the chart, such as Elektra or The Punisher. 'Superman Returns' falls somewhere in between, off the fence of greatness, but steering clear of absurdity. I'm sure die-hard Superman fans will cherish this film, but I suppose I'm not a Superman fan.
2.5 out of 4
'Poseidon' is a great ride
Poseidon It's New Years Eve, and we're aboard the Poseidon, a giant cruise ship smoothly sailing through the ocean. But in with the New Year comes a huge rogue wave, which hits the ship without warning, and capsizes it. With the ship slowly starting to sink and water slowly beginning to rise, a group of surviving passengers join forces to make their way through a variety of passages and make it to safety.
Honestly, I haven't had more fun at the movies since Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.
Poseidon, Wolfgang Peterson's big-budget remake to the camp classic "The Poseidon Adventure", is a perfect summer movie. It's a brisk, tight, intense action extravaganza. Although the fact that lack of character development before the wave hits is bothering people, it in no way takes the excitement out of the action sequences. We met these people gradually, and we are gripped in what they are undergoing on screen. I know I was, and I'm pretty sure you will be too.
Poseidon ***(from 4)
'Hoodwinked' is a goofy screwball spin on a classic tale
Hoodwinked --- This story, unlike many others, begins at the end. Chief Grizzly and Detective Bill Stork investigate a crime scene at Granny's cottage, involving a sweet-natured, karate-kicking Red Riding Hood, a mysterious wolf and an oafish, ax wielding Woodsman. Each of the four suspects must tell their own stories, which is where our movie begins.
While Hoodwinked might not have cutting edge animation, it has wacky characters, a clever plot and, while it's cooking, jokes that work. The voices in the film are very matchable with their characters, and that's part of the reason the film works. Every character gives their story, and all the stories tie in together at the end, and that's when we find the true criminal. I won't give anything away, because Hoodwinked is worth a matinée.
If you're looking for some CG family fun, Hoodwinked may just be that movie. It's enjoyable, smart, colorful and witty. Good for the whole family.
'Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire' is by far the best of the Potter films, and perhaps one of the best of 2005...
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire We return once again to our maturing hero, Harry Potter(Radcliffe), who isn't wasting his summer away spending time with the Durselys. Instead, the film kicks off to a mysterious, more matured start with a dark set-up that turns out to be a dream. Upon waking up, we see Harry at the Weaslys, spending time with his friends, Ron(Grint) and Hermione(Watson). Just 14 minutes in, we're back on the train for another year at Hogwarts. This year, Hogwarts is playing host to a legendary event, the TriWizard Tournament. Three magical schools come together and one student is selected from each school to take part in the tournament, in which they will have to complete three dangerous tasks. But Harry finds himself an under aged selection, yet he's forced to compete.
This 'Goblet' is a model of spellbinding, enthralling storytelling that doesn't lose itself along the way. Feuled by endless invention, vibrant special effects and strong performances from our trio makes up to be the most complex of the Potter films. What sets 'Goblet' apart from the others is this: It's the first of the Potter films to set the turning point for the Potter films. It's darker, scarier, funner, more poignant than it's predecessors. It gets under these characters skin, and attempts the "epic" scope and emotion of the lord of the Rings films, the only Potter to even attempt to reach such heights.
Fianl Verdict: While the potter films probably will never be taken seriously enough, Goblet of Fire stands as one of 2005's best movies.
Goblet of Fire: 4 from 4
Fun with Dick and Jane (2005)
'Fun with Dick and Jane' is a poorly constructed, uneven comedy that could have easily been one of Carrey's best, yet sits way below the line of expectations
Fun With Dick and Jane Living in the comfortable suburban life, Dick Harper (Carrey) and Jane Harper (Leoni) are looking forward to a spectacular future when Dick gets a promotion at his corporate job. Unfortunately, the job lasts less than 48 hours, when his boss (Baldwin) takes the company down with him in a scandal that sends all the employees into bankruptcy. Unable to find suitable work, they resort to selling almost everything in their house. Eventually, however, that plan runs thin when they run out of things to sell. With no food and practically nothing in their house, Dick and Jane turn to robbery and crime to pay their bills.
I'm sure the everybody involved in the production of this movie knows there's a good movie in here somewhere, but nobody seems to find it.
In a world filled with remakes, sequels, and sequels to remakes, here comes Fun with Dick and Jane, a frantic, discordant remake that only stays as passable due to Carrey's wacky and cheery sense of comedy. He does his best to keep the material light and funny, but he falls short unfortunately.
The major problem is Dick and Jane doesn't have the timing or goofiness to work as slapstick, and isn't clever enough to work as satire. While the movie is goofy, It's goofy in the wrong ways. You don't laugh when they fall or trip over something because the situation and timing is all wrong. The best thing I can say about the movie is: yes, I did laugh at several parts. Not not enough, not nearly enough with the plot and actors involved.
Dick and Jane: 2.5 out of 4
Into the Blue (2005)
'Into the Blue' manages to create an exciting Caribbean vibe and stretch it into a popcorn thriller that works
Into the Blue Jared(Paul Walker) has just got fired from his job. He lives with his girlfriend, Sam(Jessica Alba) in a trailer park in the beautiful Bahamas where they try to make a living searching for sunken treasure in the shark-infested waters. When they meet up with Jared's friends Bryce(Scott Caan) and his latest girlfriend Amanda(Ashley Scott), they take a boat out to continue their search for treasures.
What they don't expect to find is the wreckage of a cargo plane, filled with dead bodies and cocaine. They believe their fantsies of buried treasure has finally come true. But the situation gets sticky when they find out a group of dangerous criminals are desperately searching for this plane. When they find out Jared has found it, the hunt begins...
'Into the Blue' really tries to be a movie. It's not mindless dumb movie energy you'd expect from watching the trailer. Jessica Alba and Paul Walker give convincing performances, and Scott Caan provides some much needed comic relief. The unique thing about this scuba flick is the footage is simply stunning. Nearly every shot in this film is beautiful, above or under water. And I'm not just referring to the camera pans up and down buff bodies. To put it simply, the writer and director knew what the target audience was looking for... and they deliver a little bit more. 'Into the Blue' is entertaining, crisp, lean and stunning shot in the clear waters of the Bahamas.
3 from 4
The Man (2005)
'The Man' a limp piñata of clichéd characters, jokes and plots that begs to be hit...
'The Man' a limp piñata of clichéd characters, jokes and plots that begs to be hit...
The miscast Samuel L. Jackson stars as Derrick Vann, a caustic, gung ho Federal Agent who has 24 hours to recover a pile of stolen weapons and find his former partner's killers. This becomes much more challenging when the bad guys mistake salesman Andy Fiddler (Levy, also miscast) for the gun buyer. Now, Vann has to get Andy to pose as the front man in a sting operation.
The only thing that set's 'The Man' apart from any other buddy cop movie is that it wastes the most talent in less time then you can say "He's my bitch." I was planning on seeing "Emily Rose", but it was sold out, so I got stuck with this limp, unnecessary buddy cop "comedy" with not an original idea in it's mess of clichés. Both actors have real talent, but are wasted, trying to do their best with weak material. While the film does have some laughs, it's a lame movie with recycled jokes that doesn't realize it's a lame movie with recycled jokes. That's the real problem here.
Brainless movies are appreciated when they don't take themselves too seriously. 'The Man' can't be classified in this category because It does take itself too seriously, and actually begins to think it's a passable movie. If I wanted to see brainless fun, there are much better options out there. Don't waste $10 on this movie, don't even wait for it on DVD. Avoid.
The Man: D(3 from 10)