Street Kings (2008)

Should I see it?
No.


  • Keanu Reeves as a tough cop.
  • Forest Whitaker ripping off his previous work on The Shield.
  • Hugh Laurie being languishing in a side part.
How could that possibly go wrong?

Well, many ways apparently.

This is the typical call cops are criminals with badges bromide we've been forced to swallow since I forget when. Just another flick trying to replicate Training Day (which wasn't nearly as good as people claimed).
This is a serious waste of time. Do not bother yourself. Even if you get to see this for free, your time is worth more than the results of this production.



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You Are What You See:
Watching Movies Through a Christian Lens





The Book of Eli (2010)

Should I see it?
On DVD? Sure. Otherwise? No.



Short Review: You know how you'll trick your dog into getting into the car and he will pant and smile because of the anticipation of a fun ride and perhaps something exciting at the end of the trip? Then you pull into the vet and his eyes droop and his excitement wanes? Go see this movie and see what it feels like.



Denzel Washington plays Eli, a lone drifter who travels the violent open highways of a post-apocalyptic America. He carries the only Bible remaining in the whole world. From the looks of the cast, he is also the only remaining black man.

Carnegie (Gary Oldman) is a local despot controlling a small, isolated down. He has been sending his greasy-toothed biker minions on missions to collect books wherever they can be found. Carnegie is a budding fascist dictator and understands that if he can find a copy of the Bible, he has the Word of God at his fingertips. This will afford him the ability to control the populace within the sound of his voice.

Eli strolls into town. His sole Bible is found out and things get a tad violent.

This is a solid premise and a strong conflict. There is no reason why this film shouldn't be a fascinating, moving work of cinema. Remarkably, even with a sturdy plot, compelling story and a talented cast (mostly), this film ends up missing the mark.

There is an old adage for police that you don't pull out your gun unless you're going to use it. The same can be said for faith in film. If you broach the sensitive subject of religion in a film you had better be willing to a have a conclusion one way or the other. Any story that pulls in religious imagery or text and then balks at remaining firm through to the end will ring hollow - just like this film does.

Eli violently protects his Bible. He cuts men down with a blade and gun. In his defense, he always offers a mild attempt at peaceful resolution, but ultimately he kills more people than Matthew Broderick behind the wheel after a couple of double shots of SoCo. It is made abundantly clear that he reads his Bible every day. Apparently, he has an issue with the comprehension part of reading.

***The following paragraphs are spoilers***

At the end of the film Eli arrives at Alcatraz where he recites the Bible verse for verse to a librarian. The printed Bible is then shoved away into a library in between the Koran and the Torah. Even though Eli is clearly shown to be protected by miraculous intervention, his efforts are rewarded by being morally equated to other religions. The end is a statement that implies that all religions are the same.

The Hughes Brothers, the men who made the film, go out of their way to show that God is personally invested in Eli's journey. They then abort this relationship in favor of satisfying politically correct dogma that all paths to God are equal. This undermines their whole story, the whole reason for the film. It undermines any reason the audience may have to sit through the production in the first place. If the Bible is just another book that informs just another religion then it doesn't make sense that Carnegie would assume having it would change anything in his small town. If the Bible is so unspectacular, then Eli is a psycho for killing people he meets along the way on his fool's errand.

I'm not saying this had to be a preachy flick. It did however need to resolve the issues it brought up in the first place. It fails to do this therefore it fails overall.

***Spoilers done***

The other serious problem with the film is Mila Kunis of That 80's Show fame. She is woefully miscast. The first problem is that her character was born after the destruction of civilization. This means she has never known soap, shampoo, conditioner or makeup. Somehow she wears makeup, has thick, healthy hair and wonderfully white teeth. She is beautiful, but not naturally so, it is all make-up.

Mila is not a great actress. This is made abundantly clear in her scenes with Washington, Oldman and Jennifer Beals. Mila wilts in comparison. She is a dark-haired Barbie in a world of thespians.

Photobucket

Washington grumbles his lines. Oldman offers his usual delicious overacting. The real standout in the production is Jennifer Beals. It will not be surprising if she earns larger roles from her supporting role here. First of all, unlike Mila, Beals provides a striking natural beauty. She looks like the kind of woman who looks as good without make-up as she does all dolled up. Beyond the superficial, Beals also provides the real emotional hook in the production. Washington is a stodgy, unlikeable guy. It falls to Beals to provide the emotional connection for the audience and in this role she shines. If there is anything to take from this film, it comes from her performance.

Overall, this is a good pick for a DVD release. This is not a waste of time but it is also not time well spent. This is truly a lukewarm production.

It is a deep shame that we don't live in an culture open enough to speak about faith in an honest and open way. Perhaps this film could have resolved in a logical fashion. Instead it was forced to capitulate and stutter to an unsatisfying end that helps no one.



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Good News Film Reviews

Non-Film Related Post of the Day: Geez, You Mean Global Warming Was a Lie? Really? Whodathunk?

It isn't that many people were fooled. It is that many people are just stupid and believe everything they're told by their "betters".

Movie Trailer: Kabei: Our Mother

So, pretentiousness doesn't know national boundaries - good to know.

What is the call to see here? It's lost on me.

video


***Update***

K. left a comment on this trailer I felt was good enough to share here:

If such a movie were made in the US, you could call it "pretentious" ,because it would be. The war part would be only in the story to make a comment on the effects of American imperialism yadda yadda.

But in Japan, sentimental soppy soaps like this have been quite popular (known as two hanky movies) since before the war and there's no overt agenda. They are pretty down with losing the war (and why) and the purpose of the war background is usually to turn the emotional content to "11" - while also playing off their cultural history which they do a lot. They are, after all culturally homogeneous, as opposed to the US which is having cultural homogeneity imposed upon it from Europe and the euro worshipers in the academy.



So, I have my answer.



Screenwriters: Yôji Yamada and Emiko Hiramatsu
Director: Yôji Yamada (Love and Honor)
Actors: Tadanobu Asano (Mongol), Keiko Toda and Takashi Sasano (Instant Swamp)




Movie Trailer: Sultanes del Sur

Okay.

So, let's not put white subtitles against light backgrounds. It helps the non-first language audiences.

From what I can tell is going on here, its another crime movie that stinks of the overly violent, amoral crap that was squatted out in the early nineties.

Here's to dipping back into the mire of our past.



Screenwriter: Tony Dalton
Director: Alejandro Lozano
Actors: Tony Dalton, Jordi Mollà (Che: Part Two) and Ana de la Reguera (Nacho Libre)



Movie Trailer: Creation

It gets tedious explaining to evolutionists that their theory doesn't exclude God one bit. Even if all of their claims are 100% true, it does not impact God one iota.

Depending on how the subject matter is handled, this could be an interesting examination of faith and doubt. Something tells me not to bother holding my breath.




Return to the movie trailers page


Screenwriters: John Collee (The Man Who Sued God) and Randal Keynes
Director: Jon Amiel (The Man Who Knew Too Little)
Actors: Paul Bettany (The Da Vinci Code), Jennifer Connelly (House of Sand and Fog), Jeremy Northam (The Invasion) and Toby Jones (The Mist)


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You Are What You See:
Watching Movies Through a Christian Lens

Movie Trailer: Chi bi "Red Cliff"

John Woo ain't no schmuck and this is worth seeing, if for no other reason that it will be rich visuals for the eyes.

This admitted - let' all come clean and realize that the reason why all worthwhile Chinese films are hyper-realistic and/or based in feudal times is because the "I get to be Capitalist and you get to be Communist" regime has led to a complete collapse in culture and advancement. There is nothing to celebrate in their culture, nothing worth seeing on film.

But that is just my opinion.





Screenwriters: John Woo (Bullet in the Head), Khan Chan, Cheng Kuo (The Rules of the Game) and Heyu Sheng (Legend of the Black Scorpion)
Director: John Woo (Hard Boiled)
Actors: Tony Leung Chiu Wai (Infernal Affairs), Takeshi Kaneshiro (House of Flying Daggers), Fengyi Zhang (The Emperor and the Assassin), Chen Chang (The Go Master) and Wei Zhao (The Longest Night in Shanghai)




Movie Trailer: Street Dreams

His father couldn't be more correct.

When I watch this trailer...

video

I can't help but think of this...



or this...






Screenwriters: Elisa Delson, Rob Drydek and Nino Scalia
Director: Chris Zamoscianyk
Actors: Paul Rodriguez, Ryan Dunn, Compton Ass Terry and C.C. Sheffield



Friday Rewind: Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008)

***Originally posted on July 30, 2008***


Should I see it?
No.


Short Review: You know how you thought the first one was going to stink but it didn't? This is the movie you thought you were going to get the first time.



The original Hellboy film was a pleasant surprise. Almost to a person, everyone I know who saw the first film said something to the effect "I thought it was going to be lame but it was pretty good." If you're holding out for another such surprise, I'm here to tell you to you can move on.

The film is pointless sequel. It doesn't expand upon the relationships and story developed in the first film and it doesn't create enough new content to stand on its own. After some spryness to open the film, the whole production lounges back into tedious fight sequences and nonsensical fantasy mumbo jumbo.

Hellboy and his cohorts stand up for humanity when the mythical world beings to rebel. Apparently, humans and all of the extras from Lord of the Rings used to be at war and this and that happened and eventually the mythical creatures were all sent underground. Well, now they're cranky and coming to take over. The mythical folks are led by the aggressive Prince Nuada who looks like the demon spawn of Edgar Winter and acts just like a over reaching character actor stuck in a poorly written role that is still beyond the grasp of his talents. Prince Over Actor, confronts Hellboy and friends in well designed sets and perform some practiced fight choreography.

Written and directed by Guillermo Del Toro, the aesthetics of the film are top notch. The man is a great designer. Visually, there's nothing to find fault in, visually its a treat. His script is the failure of the production. Del Toro's script is predictable, forced and not befitting his design or his cast. Ron Perlman in particular seems almost bored by the expectations of his dialog. In the original film he was given an interesting character to fulfill and he clearly mined the role for everything it was worth. In this film, Perlman is given little to work with and therefore doesn't produce much beyond some grunted one liners and a sense he should be doing more. On top of this one conflict doesn't smoothly lead to the next and its not clear how they all work as one cohesive path to the final fight. This gives the film a stuttering, disjointed feel that never settles down long enough to allow for any real development to take place. Del Toro would have had the same flow if he had a title board pop up between scenes that read "...and then this happens!"

I wanted to enjoy this film. Del Toro is one of the strongest filmmakers working right now, I have high regard for his vision and his craftiness. Unfortunately, he misses his mark here and wastes a strong cast. Rewatch the first film and skip this one.





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Movie Trailer: Extraordinary Measures

That's how science works. If you throw enough money at it, it all gets figured out.

Old Indy may save the kids from dying from disease but there ain't no cure for schmaltz.






Screenwriter: Robert Nelson Jacobs (The Water Horse)
Director: Tom Vaughn
Actors: Harrison Ford (Raiders of the Lost Ark), Brendan Fraser (Bedazzled), Keri Russell (Waitress), Courtney B. Vance (Hamburger Hill), Dee Wallace (Critters), Alan Ruck (Ferris Bueller's Day Off) and Patrick Bauchau (The Rapture)




Movie Trailer: Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans

At first glance this doesn't seem like much other than Nicholas Cage overacting. I'm hesitant to dismiss it however. Werner Herzog when he's not wasting the world's time making his ham-fisted documentaries is capable of brilliance. It has been a while since he's shown it, but one never knows.

This said, Cage strikes me as a miscast from the word go. We'll see.







Screenwriter: William M. Finkelstein
Director: Werner Herzog (The Grizzly Man)
Actors: Nicholas Cage (Lord of War), Val Kilmer (Top Secret), Eva Mendes (We Own the Night), Jennifer Coolidge (Best of Show), Fairuza Balk (Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead) and Brad Dourif (Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers)




Movie Quote: The Pope of Greenwich Village

Paulie
Hey Barney, Don't eat that crap! This guy's selling instant hepatitis!
















Good News Film Reviews

Movie Trailer: Whip It

The funny thing is that the girls in the opening of the trailer are the actual rebels, the real "alternatives". Any slack-jaw can get a tattoo and act like an ass, insult their parents and put their fleeting desires over what's actually best for them. Happens all the time.

If you're going to be a rebel, at least do it differently than everyone else. Do it in a way that actually improves your life and the lives of those around you.




Screenwriters: Shauna Cross
Director: Drew Barrymore
Actors: Ellen Page (X-Men: The Last Stand), Marcia Gay Harden (Miller's Crossing), Sarah Habel and Shannon Eagen




Movie Quote: Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

Patches O'Houlihan
If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball.

Justin

What?

[Patches throws a wrench and hits Justin in the face]










Good News Film Reviews

Gamer (2009)

Should I see it?
Nope.


Short Review: Lamer.



THIS IS STUPID!

Gamer, Gerard Butler's star vehicle gives the bastard child of mixing The Running Man with Death Race and he owes us all an apology.

I have suffered through more than my fair share of crappy movies. I've seen moronic movies, dumb movies, feckless movies even embarrassingly misguided ones. Of those bad movies it is common to see the reason why it was made. There is generally a hook or concept threaded somewhere in the presentation that shows there was someone thinking someone at one time. I couldn't find one such concept here.

This is the deposit of the writing team of Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor, the guys who are responsible for (or should I say guilty of) Crank. Which, by the way, has one of those pitch-ready concepts at its core (a violent British thug has to keep his adrenaline up or he will die (Speed meets The Transporter). In this go-around they manage the Herculean effort of making Crank seem like it was penned by Moliere.

Here is the synopsis torn off of IMDb:

Set in a future-world where humans can control other humans in mass-scale, multi-player online gaming environments, a star player from a game called "Slayers" looks to regain his independence while taking down the game's mastermind.

Odd that this movie has a script, it didn't need one. They could have just pieced together random images of explosions, bullet wounds and oil, muscled men carrying weapons and it would have been roughly the same.

If for no other reason, you should skip this film because they actually cast Ludacris as someone other than a drooling moron. We're asked to believe he's computer savvy. I guess Britany Spears was unavailable during the shooting schedule.




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Movie Trailer: Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time

It could just be a quirk of mine but I honestly don't see the draw of Jake Gylee...Gyllenellel...no, Gy...Gyelenhally...dang, Jake Gyllenhaalalaalaalaal, ah, screw it. Like his sister, he has very little presence on screen. For example, he played opposite Heath Ledger in that gay cowboy, er sheepherder, flick Brokeback Mountain. Now, when I was dry heaving and fumbling for the fast-forward button, it was obvious in that film which of them was the actor and which one wasn't. Ledger had presence, depth. Jake Gyllennenhell...Gel In Hall is flatter than a week old cup of Dr. Pepper.

Now, Gemma Arterton? Oh, there's plenty of presence there.

"The gods have a plan for you." Well, since there are no "gods" but only "God" whatever plan "they" have for you will probably stink.





Screenwriters: Doug Miro (The Great Raid) and Carlo Bernard (The Uninvited)
Director: Mike Newell (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire)
Actors: Jake Gyllenhaal (Brokeback Mountain), Gemma Atherton (Quantum of Solace), Ben Kingsley (Transsiberian) and Alfred Molina (Spider-Man 2)





Underworld: Rise of the Lycans (2009)

Should I see it?
No.


There is an old saying that "good things come in three's". The person who coined that phrase didn't live long enough to witness this cinematic trio of tripe.

But hey, at least these vampires don't sparkle like a bunch of mincing fairies.

This is like the others in the series: schlocky and overwrought. If you enjoy watching very good actors taking their material far too seriously and screaming nearly every line - knock yourself out. If you have better things to do than watch something as sophomoric as vampires fighting werewolves while taking off their clothes and rolling around in the moonlight and then chopping an untold number of people in half - then do those things.



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The Hurt Locker (2008)

Should I see it?
Absolutely.


Short Review: Someone must have made a mistake. This film presents soldiers in Iraq as dedicated, intelligent men. C'mon, that's not the template! Ain't they supposed to be busting down doors in the middle of the night and putting their cigars out on newborns or something?

So, you make propaganda maligning our troops in the field, thus providing support for the enemy - release on an international scale productions that attempt to break troop and citizen morale...geez, its a good thing we don't have a term for that kind of thing or otherwise people in Hollywood may be in huge trouble.


There are times when all of the hype surrounding a film is actually justified. This is one of those productions. This is a pitch-perfect, well executed film that walks the balance beam of showing the harsh conditions and psychological horror of war without portraying our soldiers are seething brutes who are out of control. Unlike Oliver Stone's self-loathing (albeit interesting) presentation in Platoon, where the battle zone is a place of no heroic action and no honor, this film, directed by Kathryn Bigelow (K-19: The Widowmaker), admits the truth: war is painful, it is horrible and ugly, but it is also very human. This means it brings out the extreme evil in men but also the extreme good.

This is a far cry from a pro-war film, do not get me wrong. Bigelow and company are stridently anti-war, as they should be. What makes them different from the cohorts in the entertainment industry is that they don't conflate their anti-war philosophy with being anti-solider. This is a huge difference.

SFC William James (Jeremy Renner) is the newly appointed head of an Army bomb squad unit in Iraq. James along with Sgt. JT Sanborn (Anthony Mackie) and Spc. Owen Eldridge (Brian Geraghty) go from one deadly scene to the next as they diffuse bombs, handle snipers and avoid being shot on their tour of duty. James seems to have a death wish. He is a belligerent risk-taker who doesn't appear to have his survival instincts hooked up any more. This is naturally disconcerting to his comrades, as they still hope to live through their time in service. What results is a battle between the nihilistic James and Sanborn, who still clings to hope.

The one main flaw of the film is that James is a little too quirky in some respects. I am not a military guy - never served and you don't want me to. Speaking as an outsider, it would seem to me that someone as broken and apparently suicidal as James wouldn't be allowed on a bomb squad, or at least not given one to lead. Perhaps that is wishful thinking on my part. Having known a number of veterans I hold plenty of anecdotal evidence that our military command is that foolhardy (read stupid).

There is one sequence in the film that stands out. There is a patient, sniper battle when the squad gets pinned down. It is the most enthralling and tense battle sequence since Saving Private Ryan. Bigelow doesn't overplay the scene but rather draws it out, allowing the tension of the situation to take command of the audience. It is impossible to see this scene and not get drawn in. The transition between this scene and the next, you'll have to see the film to see what I mean, is one of the better examples of the psychotic emotional roller coaster our soldiers endure.

This deserves the Best Picture Oscar. It is easily the best American film of the year.




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Movie Trailer: A Nightmare on Elm Street

Just imagine if the studios put this much effort into making original material.

Remakes of cheesy 80's horror flicks is about as being offered a bag full of secondhand Doritos.






Screenwriters: Wesley Strick (Doom) and Eric Heisserer
Director: Samuel Bayer
Actors: Jackie Earle Haley (Watchmen), Rooney Mara (Youth in Revolt), Thomas Dekker (From Within), Katie Cassidy (Taken), Kyle Gallner (Jennifer's Body) and Clancy Brown (Highlander)




Movie Trailer: The Boys Are Back

"respected journalist"? Isn't that like saying "honest politician", "approachable dentist" or "responsible pedophile?"

Clive Owen always sounds like he's saying his lines while chewing on a mouthful of cashews.

This is a simple, conventional trailer. Plenty of sunny scenes, smiles and bouncy music to alert the viewer this is supposed to be uplifting.

"Just say yes". There's a parenting plan.

"Hey Dad, can I put the puppy in the clothes dryer with these unopened soup cans?"

"Yes, Billy. Daddy says yes because Daddy is more concerned with your temporary happiness rather than helping you develop into a useful purpose."






Screenwriters: Allan Cubitt
Director: Scott Hicks (Hearts in Atlantis)
Actors: Clive Owen (Children of Men), Laura Fraser (The Passion), George MacKay (Defiance) and Emma Booth




Movie Trailer: Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps

...and neither do unnecessary sequels.

Here are some pairs of words I that make me wretch:
  • Root canal
  • Proctology examination
  • Tax hike
  • Weeping sore
  • Fungal infection
  • Wet socks
  • Oliver Stone



This is what we need, a bunch of second generation actors (Douglas, Sheen and Brolin), all of whom probably wouldn't be where they are without their parents hard work, telling the little folk how crappy it is other people cheat the system.

It's nice to see that Charlie Sheen stopped abusing his wife long enough to do some scenes.

Return to the movie trailers page


Screenwriters: Allan Loeb (21)
Director: Oliver Stone (Wall Street)
Actors: Michael Douglas (Falling Down), Shia LaBeouf (The Greatest Game Ever Played), Carey Mulligan (Brothers), Charlie Sheen (Scary Movie 4), Susan Sarandon (In the Valley of Elah), Josh Brolin (Milk) and Frank Langella (Frost/Nixon)






Movie Trailer: The Last Station

Hey, it has Helen Mirren in it. Even if it is an annoying, melodramatic wad of self-indulgence, I still say, hey, it's got Helen Mirren in it.







Screenwriters: Michael Hoffman
Director: Michael Hoffman (The Emperor's Club)
Actors: Helen Mirren (The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and Her Lover), James McAvoy (The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe), Christopher Plummer (Dragnet), Paul Giamatti (Lady in the Water), Patrick Kennedy (Munich) and Anne-Marie Duff (Notes on a Scandal)




Movie Trailer: The Men Who Stare at Goats

This is a very good trailer. It does a wonderful job of selling the film and the performances. George Clooney does have a goofy comedic side which doesn't get utilized enough. As this trailer displays, he has a particularly good knack for double-takes.







Screenwriters: Jon Ronson (How to Lose Friends & Alienate People)
Director: Grant Heslov
Actors: George Clooney (Burn After Reading), Ewan McGregor (Trainspotting), Jeff Bridges (The Fisher King), Kevin Spacey (21), Stephen Lang (Avatar), Robert Patrick (Terminator II: Judgment Day), Stephen Root (Office Space) and Waleed Zuaiter




Friday Rewind: The Devil Wears Prada (2006)

***Originally published on August 14, 2008***

Should I see it?

Yes.


Short Review:
It’s a Über-chick flick and I really enjoyed it. Don’t worry, when I was done watching I killed a bear with a knife, mangled things with a chainsaw and left the toilet seat up all night to recalibrate my masculinity.

The Devil Wears Prada

This is a well-built film. Oh, it’s a chick flick supreme, but ultimately it is a darn good movie. The piece is about Andy, a smart but naive young woman from Ohio, who finds herself assisting a cruel fashion magazine editor in New York City. Basically this is the mother lode of chick flicks. There are clothes, boy trouble, girly politics and more clothes.

Sex In The City and Entourage director David Frankel deserves great credit for his work. The movie is sharply paced providing some great moments. Frankel and screenwriter Aline Brosh McKenna (27 Dresses) do a fantastic job of making the elite world of fashion accessible and interesting. They smartly know that the casual haughtiness of the citizens of that world is not only annoying, but also seen as undeserved by the average person. Actually, the haughtiness is undeserved regardless of how it is seen. Frankel and company offer enough explanations of why fashion is taken so seriously by so many that it gives a pass to what could have been the film’s biggest hurdle – getting people to care.

Much has been written about Meryl Streep’s portrayal of Runway magazine’s editor Miranda Priestly. Miranda is a cold, dismissive woman and Streep obviously enjoyed the role. She commands her scenes managing the role with an overbearing presence. She comes across as a snootier version of Cruella De Vil. Beyond Streep’s great performance, I think lead Anne Hathaway deserves more credit for the success of the film. As Julia Robert's heir apparent, Hathaway has now shown she is capable of extending enough charm and ability to handle a large role. She doesn’t throw down an Oscar worthy performance, but she threads the piece nicely and provides a sympathetic lead against Streep’s stronger character.

The only serious flaw in the film is that it doesn’t know what to do when not concentrating on Streep and Hathaway. Mostly in the first third of the film, Andy (Hathaway) hangs with her “normal” friends that have been inserted into the piece so we can see her roots. These friends are likable enough and their brief scenes do the job, but the scenes are inserted just the same. On the other end of the film, Andy gets embroiled in a needless sex romp with Christian (Simon Baker), an elite guy who’s supposed to represent her new life. Christian is also inserted in the film to fill a hole in the plot. These scenes, while not disastrous, do feel like distractions from the main event. They feed Andy’s growing discomfort with joining the ranks of the fashion hierarchy so they do have a purpose. The transformation of the character of Andy from Ohio girl to fashion fancy pants is so complete that by the time she has to decide if she should stay with the fashion hierarchy or go back to shopping at The Gap, it seems stupid for her to turn back. She’s sacrificed everything, gained a great deal, and her old life seems troubled and petty. Granted, the fashion world is the sham, but it is sold in the film as being better than hanging with the grunts of the world.

I didn’t want to like this movie. I have a natural aversion to both fashion and chick flicks. This movie overpowered my disdain. This is a good movie. The performances are wonderful, the writing is great, and the direction is thoughtful. I highly recommend this film.



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s
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Good News Film Reviews

Movie Quote: Se7en

David Mills
Wait, I thought all you did was kill innocent people.


John Doe
Innocent? Is that supposed to be funny? An obese man... a disgusting man who could barely stand up; a man who if you saw him on the street, you'd point him out to your friends so that they could join you in mocking him; a man, who if you saw him while you were eating, you wouldn't be able to finish your meal. After him, I picked the lawyer and I know you both must have been secretly thanking me for that one. This is a man who dedicated his life to making money by lying with every breath that he could muster to keeping murderers and rapists on the streets!


David Mills
Murderers?


John Doe
A woman...


David Mills
Murderers, John, like yourself?


John Doe
[interrupts]
A woman... so ugly on the inside she couldn't bear to go on living if she couldn't be beautiful on the outside. A drug dealer, a drug dealing pederast, actually! And let's not forget the disease-spreading whore! Only in a world this sh**y could you even try to say these were innocent people and keep a straight face. But that's the point. We see a deadly sin on every street corner, in every home, and we tolerate it. We tolerate it because it's common, it's trivial. We tolerate it morning, noon, and night. Well, not anymore. I'm setting the example. What I've done is going to be puzzled over and studied and followed... forever.






Good News Film Reviews

50 Dead Men Walking (2008)

Should I see it?
Nope.


Competently directed and well acted, this film about young thug from Belfast in the 1980's who infiltrates the IRA to gather information for the British cops asks a bit too much. Yes, the audience is given a clear look at life in the conflicted city and the horrors that became a daily occurrence during the conflict. However, the audience isn't given a hero they can fully back nor a storyline that is engaging enough to warrant sitting through all of the misery on screen.

Jim Sturgess (Across the Universe, 21) is a solid actor and is well cast as the thieving Martin, the young man who becomes a mole. Too bad his praise-worthy performance is buried in the mix. Director Kari Skogland is a good director, but it seems the cursory elements, the locations, side conflicts, the need to explain the history, got in the way of her storytelling.

This isn't a film I'd advise searching out. If it is available, you may want to give it a look however.


Cautions: This film presents sexual situations, gory violence and plenty of foul language.



Related Reviews:
Ben Kingsley movies
The Assignment (1997)
Transibberian (2008)


Other Critic’s Reviews:
NY Movie Guru
Reel Talk



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