Alan North

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I'll Take You There Review


Very Good
It only takes a few minutes to see Hal Harley's influence on his frequent starlet Adrienne Shelly in this, her fourth outing as an indie writer/director. This quirky tale -- difficult to explain but easy to follow -- has Ally Sheedy kidnapping a lovelorn Reg Rogers while he tries to get to the girlfriend that just ran off with his best friend. Shelly appears to provide help (and self-help), and a nutty road trip through Sheedy's neo-psychotic past and present ensues. Interesting and sometimes hysterical, but the direction is rather pedestrian and the story, strangely enough, just doesn't come off as that original. Go figure.

Crazy People Review


Weak
Ah, the curse of an unorthodox sleep schedule. Yet again I find myself watching movies I barely remember being advertised at times of night (or, in this case, morning) that are highly strange. Griping about my combination of yuppie flu and insomnia (the latter both coming on at the worst time) aside, I found myself watching a movie this morning that I had not seen in years.

The movie, Crazy People, is one of those films for which the phrase "only in Hollywood" was coined. Its hook: a bunch of lunatics come up with honest ad campaigns (i.e. "Continental: We'll screw them to get your package there on time" and "Sony: Because Caucasians are just too damn tall"). Its stars slapped in: Dudley Morre (whom I affectionately nickname the British Warren Beatty), Daryl Hannah (at the end of the 80s, the decade she shared with Kim Basigner), Paul Reiser (before "Mad About You"), David Paymer (need I say more), and J.T. Walsh.

Continue reading: Crazy People Review

Twenty Bucks Review


Very Good
Check to the right... and that's only part of the cast. Movie stars great and small came out for this production, the ultimate production of a screenplay that's been floating around since the Great Depression -- seriously, it was originally written that long ago.

The story is simple: There's no real plot or central character -- aside from a $20 that makes it way from a random pickup across several days and dozens of handlers. From a homeless woman (Linda Hunt) intent on buying a lottery ticket with it to the G-string of a stripper (Melora Walters) to a pair of thieves (Christopher Lloyd and Steve Buscemi) to many more characters normal and exotic, the bill gets filthier and filthier until its ultimate demise (and rebirth, back in the hands of Hunt's street urchin).

Continue reading: Twenty Bucks Review

The Highlander Review


Extraordinary
One of my all-time favorite guilty pleasures, The Highlander has no equal among sword-and-sorcery flicks. Emphasis on the sword.

From an engimatic Sean Connery to the pulsating Queen soundtrack, the movie has all you could want from an action flick. The flashbacks, the swordfights, "There can be only one," ... gosh, just thinking about The Highlander makes me want to track down some immortals and decapitate them.

Continue reading: The Highlander Review

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