David Thornton

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The Other Woman Review


Good

While the story isn't particularly original, and the movie tends to drift over the top into broad slapstick, this comedy wins us over due to the camaraderie between the characters. Most refreshingly, this is a film about women teaming up rather than scratching each others' eyes out. So it continually catches us off guard in all the right ways.

In Manhattan, lawyer Carly (Cameron Diaz) has finally met the perfect man in Mark (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau). But just as their relationship is about to shift into something much more serious, she discovers that he has a wife, Kate (Leslie Mann), in the suburbs. Shocked, Carly and Kate realise that Mark is the person they should be angry at, so they team up to get even. When they discover that he has another mistress, Amber (Kate Upton), they recruit her to their plan as well. And then they find evidence that his business dealings are more than a little dodgy.

While the plot lends itself to a blackly comical approach, director Nick Cassavetes instead keeps everything silly and simplistic, letting the actresses overplay their scenes. Sometimes this results in something rather hilarious, but it also undermines any credibility the story might have. Mann and Coster-Waldau are the most guilty in this sense, chomping madly on the scenery. Instead, it's the way each character works together that brings the situations to life and keeps us laughing. Although a more confident approach to the material would have made the film much stronger.

Continue reading: The Other Woman Review

Picture - Cyndi Lauper, David Thornton New York City, USA, Friday 14th May 2010

Cyndi Lauper and David Thornton - Cyndi Lauper, David Thornton New York City, USA - New York premiere of 'Here And There' Friday 14th May 2010

Cyndi Lauper and David Thornton
Cyndi Lauper and David Thornton
Cyndi Lauper and David Thornton
Cyndi Lauper and David Thornton
Cyndi Lauper and David Thornton

Picture - David Thornton, Cyndi Lauper, Darko... New York City, USA, Friday 14th May 2010

David Thornton and Cyndi Lauper - David Thornton, Cyndi Lauper, Darko Lugnulov, Jelena Mrdja New York City, USA - New York premiere of 'Here And There' Friday 14th May 2010

100 Mile Rule Review


Grim
In case you're wondering, the titular "100 Mile Rule" is that if you're more than 100 miles away from home, you can do whatever you want (i.e. cheat on your wife) and it doesn't count. This funny-err-sorta setup quickly gives way to an odd blackmail scheme, as one of the girls our three businessmen encounter threatens to tell the wife about their dalliance. The schizophrenic flick is derivative, scattered, and awfully familiar. Even a strangely cast Michael McKean can't elevate it from the late-night cable fare it's destined to be.

Swept Away (2002) Review


Weak
After beginning his career with two frenetic crime films (Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels; Snatch), filmmaker Guy Ritchie has changed his tone in order to make a vanity project. But it's not his vanity at stake, it's that of his wife, super-hyphenate Madonna, in this fairly faithful remake of the lusty, free-wheelin' 1974 Italian film Swept Away. That original, directed by Lina Wertmuller, starred Giancarlo Giannini and Mariangela Melato. This update, a film that Ritchie proves does not need to exist, stars Adriano Giannini (in his father's original role), Madonna, and Madonna's sinewy body.

Sure, hubby puts those super-tight abs and intimidating biceps front-and-center. But he's also forced to put Madonna's acting ability up there as well, and the awful truth is that Madonna is an average actress at best. Being as naturally theatrical as she is (and that's a compliment), she excels at stagy roles, as in Evita, but when it comes to the everyday, she comes across as rather limp.

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Garmento Review


Grim
The writer-director-producer of this satirical exposé about the fashion industry, Michele Maher, may have worked for three years in the Seventh Avenue garment district of New York, but the experience was clearly no training ground for directing a movie. Given the package of movie-making resources on tap here, including a fair cast, her scenes are listless, choppy, and without a discernable cinematic style. Makes one wonder who thought she could command a film set.

The effort comes off as the work of an ensemble of actors that did their best without qualified leadership. Oddly, they manage to manufacture a scattered level of interest. Given the loose guidance, it's almost a surprise that it works at all.

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Office Killer Review


Weak
Satire updates any number of cheesy horror flicks and throws in a little Psycho just for kicks. Carol Kane is perfectly cast as the demure office rat who slowly offs her co-workers one by one. Extra points for liberal use of chicken innards as wholesale gore. Minus points for not being funny enough.

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John Q Review


Terrible

From its very first scene, "John Q" feels as if it's designed to put a choke leash around your neck so director Nick Cassavetes can give it a good, hard yank whenever he wants you to feel something.

In this opening scene we watch a pretty blonde in a white BMW passing cars on a winding mountain road with a double yellow line. I'm sure I don't have to tell you what's coming, but Cassavetes toys with the viewer, dragging out a couple close calls to make your heart race before -- whammo! Squashed blonde.

What does this have to do with a movie about factory worker Denzel Washington taking over an emergency room at gunpoint to get his dying son a heart transplant? You guessed it -- the girl's an organ donor. But "John Q" doesn't get back to her until 10 minutes before the end of the movie. Cassavetes just puts it at the beginning for shock value.

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David Thornton

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