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 Posted:   Aug 30, 2010 - 4:30 PM   
 By:   Mr. Jack   (Member)

Avatar: The Last Airbender, Book One – Water (2005) by Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko -- As a general thing, I'm not that interested in cartoons. They usually fail to grab me in the way that actors can. But I'd seen enough raving about this show to check it out, and boy am I glad I did. The basic plot is standard boy on a quest to master his powers and stop the unstoppable hordes stuff, but the execution is wonderful. Most of the first half of the season, as the series finds its feet, is amusing but not great, a bit clunky but with lots of potential, but after episode 8 or so it's just on fire. Anyway, don't expect dark and gritty or super complexity, as this is a children's show, but it's a great epic fantasy with likable characters, wonderful creature and technology designs, impressively martial-artsy fighting/magic, and a fine voice cast. Definitely looking forward to the next couple seasons. (****½)

Season two is when the show really takes off and fully realizes its creative potential. And the show's best character, Toph, becomes a member of the gAang. wink

Just don't be tempted to see the M. Night Shyamalan movie, which is a crushing disappointment. frown

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2010 - 4:45 PM   
 By:   MikeP   (Member)

The Last Exorcism

Yet another horror film that starts well, builds up the tension and mounting horror and then...is utterly ruined by an ending that comes across as if the filmmakers just couldn't decide on how to end it. I won't give a clue as to 2 movies that it resembles, but if this movie had an ending that fitted the rest of what took place, it could have taken a rightful place in the realm of great horror films.

The acting is spot on and the filmmakers really do a good job of making it as real of a docu style horror film as one could hope for. And the shaky cam is not nearly as nausea inducing as say Blair Witch or Cloverfield.

But again, even though the film is a solidly crafted horror story for its nearly its entirety, it literally tosses itself out the window into oblivion at the very end with a truly crappy climax.

Wow, what a shame. frown

5/10 (could have been 8-9/10)


Patrick Fabian as the preacher should find this is his break-out role. He's been acting steady for years but, he needs to be high profile. He was dead-on terrific. Yes, the movie utterly and completely falls apart in the last 5 minutes, a stunning move, a what-were-you-thinking move. It is rare to see such a huge misstep, such a huge shift in tone and intellect.

The movie had me until the end - if I had not eaten my popcorn, it'd have been tossed at the screen. What a tremendously frustrating movie. 4/10


Salt - 7/10 - the movie gets goofier and more outlandish as it goes, but wow does it ever zip along and entertain. Fun, and a great score. But Jolie seriously, really, needs to eat a sandwich now and then.

The Square 8/10 - a nice taut thriller from Australia. A nice attempt at a modern day noir nightmare.

Blow Out 10/10 - DePalma's masterpiece from 1980. I watch it at least once a year. And, it marks the absolute last time Travolta played a real grown up human being. A stunning movie and Travolta's last great performance.

 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2010 - 4:46 PM   
 By:   Mr. Jack   (Member)

Blow Out 10/10 - DePalma's masterpiece from 1980. I watch it at least once a year. And, it marks the absolute last time Travolta played a real grown up human being. A stunning movie and Travolta's last great performance.

Pulp Fiction? Face/Off?

Agreed that Blow Out is a superb thriller, one of De Palma's best. Never fails to make me well up at the end. frown

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2010 - 4:58 PM   
 By:   MikeP   (Member)

Blow Out 10/10 - DePalma's masterpiece from 1980. I watch it at least once a year. And, it marks the absolute last time Travolta played a real grown up human being. A stunning movie and Travolta's last great performance.

Pulp Fiction? Face/Off?

Agreed that Blow Out is a superb thriller, one of De Palma's best. Never fails to make me well up at the end. frown


I like him in Pulp Fiction and love the movie, but it's a cartoon basically - keep in mind I love the movie. Face Off, is on my all time worst movies list. Soooo -

How I see it, Travolta's roles since 80 have been pretty safe commercial stuff. He plays the bad guy but he's a funny bad guy... he plays an angel but he's a sweet sad angel, and on and on. As Jack Terry in Blow Out , he was human...he was hotheaded and made mistakes. He was motivated to do the right thing but did it the wrong way...he could not be convinced he was wrong and did not learn from his past mistakes, he ended up repeating the same tragedy.

I've not seen him play a character like that since. He is either the super duper bad guy ( Broken Arrow), or the nice guy who can't be wrong. In Blow Out, he failed, Jack Terry failed - in Pulp Fiction he did have some character shadings, and he rightfully got acclaim for his role - but it was a stylized fantasy character.

As Jack Terry he was shatteringly human. I've not seen him do anything close since then, despite having some good "pop" roles.

 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2010 - 6:32 PM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

You know how sometimes sci-fi/horror hybrids can be some of the most insufferably awful films?

How to Make a Monster -- 1/10



Steven Culp: "I was in Jason Goes to Hell, I can't possibly do any horror film worse than that one."

Wrong, Steve-O.

 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2010 - 6:32 PM   
 By:   Sirusjr   (Member)

Monsters vs. Aliens -- 6/10

Fun. Nothing more, really. Considering the voice talent involved (Paul Rudd, Seth Rogen, Will Arnett, Stephen Colbert, Hugh Laurie, Kiefer Sutherland, Jeffrey Tambor) it should have been a lot funnier.

Still trying to decide whether to watch G-Force...any comments on that one?


Some excerpts from my review of Monsters vs Aliens last year. I rated it even lower than you, a 4/10.

The movie doesn’t take itself very seriously at all. Besides the sappy relationship problems Susan has with her fiancé, the rest of the dialogue is nothing but failed attempts at humor. The movie would have been a lot better if there were a lot less jokes and a more coherent plot. There are two major action sequences: One where Susan fights the giant robot across San Francisco and another where the monsters go up against an alien clone army on the alien’s ship. Both scenes are interrupted by constant jokes, none of which I found very funny. There are also numerous drawn out scenes where we have to watch as Susan argues with her fiancé. Scenes like that are unnecessary because the characters are completely one dimensional.

The whole movie is centered around Susan’s character, although I don’t think it could have been saved by focusing on any of the other characters. None of the monsters in the movie had any awesome powers or anything special about them to make them memorable. Every single human character in the movie acted idiotic, especially the president (which was probably intentional). The movie has a decent soundtrack, but it lacks any thematic complexity or originality.

I am staying far away from G-Force just because of the hip-hop used to sell it regardless of whether it is in the movie or not.

 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2010 - 6:36 PM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

I am staying far away from G-Force just because of the hip-hop used to sell it regardless of whether it is in the movie or not.

...and it's a Bruckheimer production. wink

I think I'll skip it.

 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2010 - 7:00 PM   
 By:   TominAtl   (Member)

K-19: The Widowmaker - Up until seeing this, I felt Harrison Ford could do no wrong. What a mess of a film this is. Besides a lulling story, this is absolutely the worst accent acting I've ever heard. Ford's and Neeson's Russian accents were all over the place and they couldn't seem to decide on one. More annoying, though, was that they kept forgetting to use an accent and would simply speak normal, unaccented English every other sentence. When Ford first appeared, I couldn't understand what was going on because he was speaking American English in a room full of Russian commanders. Toward the end of that sequence, he finally said something in a slight Russian accent and I knew the film was in trouble. Just horrible. At times, it seemed like someone else's voice was dubbed over his. Anyway, the lack of a consistent accent on nearly everyone's part made this movie too much of a headache and a chore to finish. The director of this film should be ashamed of himself for allowing this kind of crap to actually make it to film - 3

Actually SHE should have been ashamed of HERSELF as it was directed by none other than this past years Oscar winner for directing Kathryn Bigelow!

And yes, I agree that the decision to allow Ford and the others to try and carry a Russian accent truly sank this movie.

 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2010 - 10:17 PM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

Eagle Eye -- 10/10

This is exactly the kind of action movie I love (same goes for the score as well). I personally couldn't find any fault with the film and it delivered everything I expect and hope for in an action movie. CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2010 - 10:57 PM   
 By:   Ryan Brennan   (Member)

EVIL BONG 2: KING BONG 0/10

This was a Charles Band Full Moon "production" so you can pretty well guess what it was like. And a sequel to boot!

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 31, 2010 - 6:13 PM   
 By:   Odlicno   (Member)

Deadwood series 2 - 8.5/10

Flip, there's some mad stuff going on here; including Swerengen's illness, the nasty Mr W., a throat-cutting and Stephen Tobolowsky motor-boating a prostitute

The only problem i have is the excessive swearing. It might be realistic but everyone seems to swear in exactly the same way and nobody really seems to react to it in anything other than an accepting way, which makes it seem like its not coming from the character but the writer(s). Anyways, a minor point.

 
 Posted:   Aug 31, 2010 - 7:18 PM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

Deadwood series 2 - 8.5/10

Flip, there's some mad stuff going on here; including Swerengen's illness, the nasty Mr W., a throat-cutting and Stephen Tobolowsky motor-boating a prostitute.


Odlicno, how is Powers Boothe? He came on board soon after I lost interest in the series. I really like him.

 
 Posted:   Aug 31, 2010 - 7:19 PM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

The Day The Earth Stood Still (2008) -- 5/10

...but CLAP CLAP CLAP for the special effects!

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 31, 2010 - 7:29 PM   
 By:   Odlicno   (Member)

Deadwood series 2 - 8.5/10

Flip, there's some mad stuff going on here; including Swerengen's illness, the nasty Mr W., a throat-cutting and Stephen Tobolowsky motor-boating a prostitute.


Odlicno, how is Powers Boothe? He came on board soon after I lost interest in the series. I really like him.


He's very good but i don't think he gets to use his considerable charm very much. He's very growly and abusive to women in it mostly.

But i've always liked him since Southern Comfort. Him and Carradine in that are both great.

 
 Posted:   Aug 31, 2010 - 7:33 PM   
 By:   Mr. Jack   (Member)

True Grit (1969): 9/10

Watched this one for the first time tonight, and loved it. Great performances, dialogue, scenery, and, of course, a rip-snorting Elmer Bernstein score. smile It'll be interesting to see what Jeff Bridges and the Coens do with their forthcoming remake.

 
 Posted:   Aug 31, 2010 - 7:39 PM   
 By:   Storyteller   (Member)

My Best Fiend 7/10 Documentary about the demented relationship between Director Werner Herzog and actor Klaus Kinski. It meanders a bit from time to time, but is still a fascinating watch.

 
 Posted:   Aug 31, 2010 - 9:14 PM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

Shockingly, I'd never seen this!

...maybe if I'd seen it in the 80's like everyone else or seen it as a teenager it would have hit me harder, but...

The Breakfast Club (1985) -- 4/10

Not sure what all the hullabaloo is about. To quote Travolta in Broken Arrow:

"I don't see what the big deal is. I really don't."

I'll be watching St. Elmo's Fire later on in the week. Maybe I'll like that one?

 
 Posted:   Aug 31, 2010 - 9:16 PM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

SubUrbia (1996) -- 10/10

Seen it dozens of times before. Tied with Carlito's Way as my favorite movie of all time.

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 1, 2010 - 12:47 PM   
 By:   Cryogenix   (Member)

Posted by DeputyRiley - Glad to see I'm not the only one who enjoys Ellen Page's work (and visage).

The Trigger Effect (1996) -- 8/10

Now that was one interesting movie. Wholly original. I've never seen a story quite like this one. Great, dark, moody, chilly score by James Newton Howard. I really enjoy Koepp's work.


It's a terrific flick. I tend to watch this on a cloudy or rainy day when I'm alone. It's very atmospheric. You'd probably enjoy Trespass. Another great, dreary afternoon adventure with plenty of isolation, being cut off from the rest of the world. Judgment Night is in the same neighborhood, atmosphere-wise, but is more of a night flick, along with Stag.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0105636/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0107286/

If you want a couple of truly great dramas, check out The Boost, True Believer and Diggstown, all starring James Woods.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0094783/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0098524/
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0104107/

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 1, 2010 - 12:52 PM   
 By:   Cryogenix   (Member)

Posted by DeputyRiley - Shockingly, I'd never seen this!

...maybe if I'd seen it in the 80's like everyone else or seen it as a teenager it would have hit me harder, but...

The Breakfast Club (1985) -- 4/10

Not sure what all the hullabaloo is about. To quote Travolta in Broken Arrow:

"I don't see what the big deal is. I really don't."

I'll be watching St. Elmo's Fire later on in the week. Maybe I'll like that one?


It's a random time-killer on a Sunday morning when you're too lazy to do anything. I agree that it's nothing great at all. I dislike St. Elmo's Fire even more - garbage. But enjoy! smile

 
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