And Dark Water (a remake of Hideo Nakata's 2002 film Honogurai mizu no soko kara) is nothing if not moody. It begins in the gloom of a divorce, with just-separated Dahlia (Jennifer Connelly) and Kyle (Dougray Scott) fighting over who is going to live where - shared custody of their young girl Ceci (Ariel Gade) making commuting a big issue. Righteously furious Dahlia needs a cheap place near a good school and so ends up looking at a place on Roosevelt Island, the apartment-block-choked strip of land in the East River that makes most Manhattanites shudder and think, "There but for the grace of my broker, go I..." She and Ceci tour a grim apartment there with a chatty manager (a spot-on John C. Reilly) who tries to talk up the depressing view of rain-shrouded towers and smokestacks and the building's neo-Fascist architecture; only Reilly could say "Brutalist" with such perfectly smarmy cheer.
Continue reading: Dark Water (2005) Review
It begins with two working stiffs, Tim (Ben Stiller) and Nick (Jack Black) plodding their lives away at a 3M facility. By-the-book Tim is creeping into middle management while dreamer Nick wallows on the factory floor concocting wacky ideas for useless products. All of that changes when one of Nick's hare-brained schemes, a spray that dissolves dog excrement called Vapoorize (No. Stop. I think I'm gonna bust a gut.), pans out and makes millions.
Continue reading: Envy (2004) Review
Torpid, trite and not the least bit scary -- just unrelen=tinglyunpleasant -- the first 45 minutes of the movie only came to life in twoscenes involving the messy divorce of miserable single mom Jennifer Connelly(proving Oscars don't bring talented actresses good roles). She subsequentlymoves into a drab, creepy cinderblock slum with her sad-eyed daughter (ArielGade), even though it's made very clear that there's nothing keeping herfrom finding a nicer place in the suburbs.
Soon the kid has an "imaginary friend" she won'ttalk about, their ceiling is dripping gooey black liquid from an abandoned(and eerily flooded) apartment upstairs, and the building's greasy manager(John C. Reilly) and bug-eyed, hollow-cheeked building superintendent (PetePostlethwaite) both seem to be hiding something sinister.
Director Walter Salles (the Brazilian behind "TheMotorcycle Diaries," making his inauspicious Hollywood debut) dragsout these routine, oppressively glum establishing scenes to a mind-numbingdegree. (If this apartment building is spooky enough to justify its ownominous soundtrack theme from the moment mom and daughter arrive, how comeConnelly isn't astute enough to realize something's amiss, even if shecan't hear the music?)
Continue reading: Dark Water Review
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