Jerry Seinfeld’s first excursion into the realm of CG animation is a lively, sleek [82 mins] legal comedy, ecological fable and unlikely romance – starring bees. Thanks to Dreamworks Animation and a heartfelt script, Bee Movie is actually the second movie I’ve seen in the last little while to warrant audience applause.
Archive for the ‘Movie Reviews’ Category
Dan Burns is a widowed advice columnist with three daughters. Hmmm… My Three Daughters? No, not nearly. Dan in Real Life is an old-fashioned, family-friendly comedy with genuine heart and some new nuances for what should’ve been a formulaic flick.
As I watched Ben Affleck’s directorial debut, two thoughts crossed my mind repeatedly: crime stories set in Boston are far nastier and grittier than those set anywhere else – and Thelonious Monk was right!
Things We Lost in the Fire: Stunning Film Positions Halle Berry and Benicio Del Toro For Oscar Race!October 19, 2007
Ever since Halle Berry won an Oscar® for her amazing performance in Monster’s Ball, her career choices haven’t been all that wonderful. With Things We Lost in the Fire, she has found a project that gives her a chance to play a character who moves through a full range of emotions – and allows her to play off Benicio Del Toro, who gives one of the finest performances of his career.
George Clooney has built himself a pretty cool career by alternating fluffy summer fare with more serious, conscience provoking dramas. Michael Clayton is his latest excursion into the latter. It’s a tale about a lawsuit that hinges on the plaintiffs not finding out that the product in question was known to have potentially fatal effects on its users – sort of like the memos within the tobacco industry that acknowledged the addictive and cancer-causing aspects of their products.
James Gray’s We Own The Night is a tale of two brothers – one a cop one a nightclub manager who doesn’t know he’s working for the Russian mob. It’s an attempt to take a classic Cain & Abel/prodigal son tale and invest it with a subtext that reads exactly opposite to the surface story. It’s a laudable effort that really wants to be this year’s The Departed – but it doesn’t quite work.
The Heartbreak Kid: The Farrelly Brothers Re-establish Themselves As Masters of the Raunchy Comedy With Heart!October 5, 2007
It’s been awhile since we last heard of the Farrelly Brothers. In that time, Judd Apatow has come along and become the king of the raunchy comedy with heart, with films like The 40-Year Old Virgin and Knocked Up. Now the Farrellys are back to stake their claim to the title with The Heartbreak Kid – a sweet romantic comedy that’s spiced up with the kind of inappropriate and, yes, raunchy gags that made There’s Something About Mary a hit.
Peter Berg’s The Kingdom is a slick action flick masquerading as a statement movie. Despite a great cast and high production values – it fails on both terms because of a wrong-headed in the third act.
Julie Taymor’s Across The Universe is a polarizing film – I strongly doubt there will be viewers who walk out of it with “take it or leave it” attitude. It’s a saga of four intertwined journeys, all connected by visuals that cry out to be referred to as psychedelic, and the music of the Beatles – which is almost exclusively used as dialogue by the characters. It’s a twisted and brilliantly produced piece that will not leave you unmarked.
It’s that time of the year where all the Oscar Wannabe films start to trickle out and one of those films that is getting a lot of early buzz is “In the Valley of Elah” a political thriller about the death of an Soldier who is home on leave. This film has all the pedigree to be a best picture, it’s directed by Paul Haggis of Crash and Million Dollar Baby (two films I hated), and stars Tommy Lee Jones (Hank Deerfield), Charlize Theron (Det. Emily Sanders), and Susan Sarandon (Joan Deerfield) – Dammit, Janet!