Craig Sheffer

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Some Kind Of Wonderful Review


Very Good
John Hughes isn't best known for Some Kind of Wonderful, but ode to highschool misfits has its adherants, and sure enough it's one of his more grounded and lovable films.

Not as depressing as Pretty in Pink, not as random as The Breakfast Club, the film is a typical Hughesian love triangle among the short-haired semi-butch drummer girl (Mary Stuart Masterson), the sensitive (yet poor) painter (Eric Stoltz), and the class beauty who doesn't have money but runs in rich circles (Lea Thompson). Masterson clearly pines for her best friend Stoltz, but he either can't see it or won't see it. Besides, Thompson has perfectly '80s red hair. Naturally, the beefy, Miami Vice-dressing boyfriend (Craig Sheffer) wants nothing more than to pummel the guy who's pining for his lady.

Continue reading: Some Kind Of Wonderful Review

Fire In The Sky Review


OK
With all the great "true" UFO stories out there, it's a bit puzzling to figure out why the hicktastic 1975 story of Travis Walton and his band of logger pals earned the right to become a movie.

Walton's story -- based on his own book, which I can't find for sale anywhere, called, ahem, The Walton Experience -- goes like this: Six hard-drinkin' logger buddies encounter a red "fire in the sky" one night. They investigate and find a giant UFO in the woods, but Travis gets too close, and a light shining on him knocks him off his feet. The other five run away. When they come back the next day, Travis is nowhere to be found. The little Arizona town suspects homicide, and the FBI eventually swoops in. No one can find Travis -- or his remains. Is all the talk of UFOs a prank? When tempers threaten to flare out of control, Travis shows up again, six days later, naked, and shell-shocked. He finally tells what happens: He was abducted and tortured. And it was nasty.

Continue reading: Fire In The Sky Review

Ritual Review


OK
Fun fact here: Ritual was meant to be the third film in the Tales from the Crypt movie series, but after Bordello of Blood bombed, the trilogy was scrapped and the film was sold to Miramax. I'm not sure it ever got released theatrically, but five years later, it's back on DVD... with the Tales from the Crypt tag reinstated.

And thus the trilogy comes to a sweaty, silly end, with this remake of, believe it or not, 1943's I Walked with a Zombie. Here we have Jennifer Grey, still sporting the same hairdo from Ferris Bueller after all these years, as a disgraced medical doctor who, out of desperation, takes a job in Jamaica as a personal physician to a wealthy tycoon (Craig Sheffer) and his mysteriously sickly brother (Daniel Lapaine). What follows is -- you guessed it -- a ridiculous swirl into the world of voodoo done up the way only Hollywood can.

Continue reading: Ritual Review

Fire On The Amazon Review


Terrible
For years, Roger Corman waited to release this title to the world of drooling teenagers who frequent those free porn sites. There's certainly a fervid audience out there who are just mad about the very notion of seeing their favorite "girl next door", Sandra Bullock, completely naked. It's even on DVD, so you can freeze-frame it on a whim. It'll be the thrill of their lifetimes - the rare opportunity to do a National Geographic study on this popular movie star. Could you imagine what would happen if this were Julia Roberts?

If nothing else, Fire on the Amazon serves as a reminder that superstardom does not occur overnight in Tinseltown, and some unlucky starlets have to hock their wares in bottom-of-the-barrel, straight to video schlock. Yes, like many of those "overnight success" stories, Bullock had to slog through made-for-television weepies and cheapies, raunchy comedies and rip-offs of bigger, better Hollywood blockbusters.

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Flypaper Review


Bad
Would that I could tell you, gentle reader, what this movie is actually about. A meaningless hodgepodge of stories about snakes, bondage, kidnapping, and God knows what else. It's too bad, because there are actually some decent actors here. Lord knows why they took the parts. A pathetic excuse for a film, redeemed only in a miniscule way by Jeffrey Jones' cameo at the very end of the picture.

Dracula II: Ascension Review


Bad
What's the sequel to Dracula 2000? Not Dracula 2001, no, it's Dracula II, and alas, this one couldn't even make it to theaters.

Now on a direct-to-video shelf near you, Dracula II bears no real relation to its predecessor, namely in that it has none of the same cast and nothing to do with the former story, except that there's a vampire in it.

Continue reading: Dracula II: Ascension Review

Fire In The Sky Review


OK
With all the great "true" UFO stories out there, it's a bit puzzling to figure out why the hicktastic 1975 story of Travis Walton and his band of logger pals earned the right to become a movie.

Walton's story -- based on his own book, which I can't find for sale anywhere, called, ahem, The Walton Experience -- goes like this: Six hard-drinkin' logger buddies encounter a red "fire in the sky" one night. They investigate and find a giant UFO in the woods, but Travis gets too close, and a light shining on him knocks him off his feet. The other five run away. When they come back the next day, Travis is nowhere to be found. The little Arizona town suspects homicide, and the FBI eventually swoops in. No one can find Travis -- or his remains. Is all the talk of UFOs a prank? When tempers threaten to flare out of control, Travis shows up again, six days later, naked, and shell-shocked. He finally tells what happens: He was abducted and tortured. And it was nasty.

Continue reading: Fire In The Sky Review

A River Runs Through It Review


Very Good
Of the six movies Robert Redford has directed to date, A River Runs Through It is his second best, following behind the searing, unforgettable Ordinary People. A specialist in bringing books to life as movies, Redford has a knack for finding what matters in the text and making sure it ends up on screen.

That's vital here because Norman Maclean, on whose novella-length memoir the film is based, was a writer of exceptional grace and economy. This is a simple story that must be told the way he wrote it, and Redford delivers, even using excerpts as the narration he reads. Smart move, Bob.

Continue reading: A River Runs Through It Review

Deep Core Review


Terrible
Sometimes, a film can be so awful that words fail a movie critic. Deep Core is one of these, a terrible, terrible, terrible Voyage to the Center of the Earth homage that has Craig Sheffer and a crew of sci-fi TV show castoffs digging into the earth's crust in a giant, laser-shooting digging machine in order to shift a couple of tectonic plates through the strategic use of nuclear weapons.

Of course there's a duplicitous corporate plot to interfere with them, and boy oh boy if the atrocious digital effects don't get piled on in bulk. The supporting cast includes Star Trek: The Next Generation's Wil Wheaton, whose character exits in the most hilarious finale I've seen on film, along with Star Trek: Deep Space Nine's Terry Farrell, as a brainy inventor and requisite love interest. Perhaps most amusing is Harry Van Gorkum (no known Star Trek ties) as the corporate lackey, with a ridiculous beard that makes him look like Taylor Negron dressing up as Ron Silver. Apparently there's a commentary track on the DVD release, but after watching the movie itself I was too depressed to look for it. This one's all Core, no fruit.

Continue reading: Deep Core Review

Some Kind Of Wonderful Review


Very Good
John Hughes isn't best known for Some Kind of Wonderful, but ode to highschool misfits has its adherants, and sure enough it's one of his more grounded and lovable films.

Not as depressing as Pretty in Pink, not as random as The Breakfast Club, the film is a typical Hughesian love triangle among the short-haired semi-butch drummer girl (Mary Stuart Masterson), the sensitive (yet poor) painter (Eric Stoltz), and the class beauty who doesn't have money but runs in rich circles (Lea Thompson). Masterson clearly pines for her best friend Stoltz, but he either can't see it or won't see it. Besides, Thompson has perfectly '80s red hair. Naturally, the beefy, Miami Vice-dressing boyfriend (Craig Sheffer) wants nothing more than to pummel the guy who's pining for his lady.

Continue reading: Some Kind Of Wonderful Review

Craig Sheffer

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Deep Core Movie Review

Deep Core Movie Review

Sometimes, a film can be so awful that words fail a movie critic. Deep...

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