13 Moons is another dud from indie director Alexandre Rockwell (he was the one director in Four Rooms who you'd never even heard of; his 1992 film In the Soup remains his sole worthwhile credit). Rockwell is probably better known for his ex-wife (Jennifer Beals, to whom he was married from 1986 to 1996) than for his directing. Perhaps the most curious thing about Moons is that he got Beals to cameo in it six years after their divorce and still found time to romance his leading lady, Karyn Parsons (Hilary on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air). Parsons and Rockwell married in 2003.
Continue reading: 13 Moons Review
Motivated solely by corporate greed, Disney has recently begun cranking out low-ambition, high-profit margin throwaway pictures as bad as any of the odious junkers (e.g. "The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes") that the studio released in the 1960s and '70s.
If it's not soulless, uncalled for sequels ("Return to Never Land," "Cinderella 2"), it's hackneyed kiddie-angst comedies ("The Princess Diaries," "Max Keeble's Big Move") with no greater purpose than the mindless, robotic recycling of familiar themes to sell soundtracks and videos through relentless self-promotion on ABC TV and Radio Disney.
But this trend may have hit a new low with the release of "The Country Bears," in which writer Mark Perez and director Peter Hastings take an outdated, Chuck E. Cheese-quality Disneyland attraction called the Country Bear Jamboree and turn it into a trite, cliché-packed embarrassment of a feature film.
Continue reading: The Country Bears Review
There's just no excuse for making a Shakespeare knock-off with "Savedby the Bell" quality dialogue. When a movie modernizes The Bard, evenif it's set it in a high school, the chief obligation is to dialogue aboveall else.
"10 Things I Hate About You" -- a "Clueless"-spawnremake of "The Taming of the Shrew" -- while an above averageentry in the recent pool of teen-targeted pics, is sorely lacking in thisarena.
Penned by two office temps-cum-screenwriters and directedby a feature film rookie (Gil Junger) as well, "10 Things" isa bright idea (I'm always an advocate of fiddling with Shakespeare), butit is an interpretation without poetry or rhythm, occasionally cashingin on multi-syllabic, Scrabble-winning words in a misguided attempt tomake its characters look rebelliously intellectual.
Continue reading: 10 Things I Hate About You Review
"Galaxy Quest" was birthed from a ripe comedy premise: The leaders of a tyrannized race of pacifist aliens watching TV signals from Earth mistake the cast of a cult status science fiction show for real space adventurers and spirit them away to help save their planet.
It's "Three Amigos" with a tongue-in-cheek "Star Trek" twist and -- at first, anyway -- a pitch-perfect tone of benevolent mockery.
Clad in faux-futuristic Neoprene jumpsuits and sporting bowl-cut hair dos that would embarrass Mr. Spock, the clueless aliens with halcyon smirks, waddling walks and a nasal, monotone vocabulary are themselves mistaken for autograph-hunting geeks when they invade a sci-fi convention to recruit the "crew" of the illustrious fictional spaceship, the NESA Protector.
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Leave it to director Nora Ephron to declaw a black comedy like "Lucky Numbers," turning it into something docile and almost sweet.
Writer and sometimes director of ubiquitous, twinkly Meg Ryan romances in the '90s ("When Harry Met Sally," "Sleepless In Seattle," "You've Got Mail"), Ephron just doesn't quite have the incisive sense of humor for this movie about a bankrupt TV weatherman whose Muprhy's Law life leads him to rig the state lottery. But goodness knows she makes a valiant effort.
John Travolta stars in "Numbers" as Russ Richards, the smarmy-charmy meteorologist for a Harrisburg, Penn. television station who milks his semi-celeb status for everything its worth (he has his own table and reserved parking at Denny's).
Continue reading: Lucky Numbers Review
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Just when you thought "high concept" couldn't get any lower....And just when you thought lowbrow...
"Galaxy Quest" was birthed from a ripe comedy premise: The leaders of a tyrannized race...
There's just no excuse for making a Shakespeare knock-off with "Savedby the Bell" quality dialogue....
Motivated solely by corporate greed, Disney has recently begun cranking out low-ambition, high-profit margin throwaway...
Leave it to director Nora Ephron to declaw a black comedy like "Lucky Numbers," turning...