Deborah Del Prete

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The Spirit Review


Excellent
It's been too long since we've had a proper comic book superhero on the screen. There's been enough of them running around and bashing up the bad guys in a CGI-enhanced fashion, that's for sure. But it's hard to look at the recent cinematic incarnations of Tony Stark and Bruce Wayne and call them "superheroes;" even if they keep their identities secret and have nifty outfits. "Billionaire action figures" would be more appropriate, what with all their high-priced gadgetry and super-duper hideouts. Whatever happened to the caped heroes who kept an eye on the city's dark alleys and took out the bad guys with nothing more than a sock to the jaw?

Frank Miller's jazzy The Spirit answers that question with a cocky wink and a grin. The streets of Central City are almost always dark and threatening, but they're watched over by a guardian who used to be a cop named Denny Colt (Gabriel Macht, wonderfully deadpan). One near-death experience later and Colt has dug himself out of his own grave. He then decides to serve the city as a masked avenger known as The Spirit, whose only weapons are a newfound ability to absorb ridiculous amounts of punishment and his fists.

Continue reading: The Spirit Review

Suburban Girl Review


Grim
I'll be honest. The only reason I am bothering to write this review is to complain: Why would you take a pretty cool title like The Girls' Guide to Hunting and Fishing and sub in a generic, borderline-lame one like Suburban Girl? I mean, there's not even anything remotely cool about the suburbs. Why would I want to watch a movie about a girl from them?

Well, you wouldn't, which is why Suburban Girl went straight to video, despite starring megawatt powers Sarah Michelle Gellar and Alec Baldwin. Gellar is Brett Eisenberg, the Suburban Girl of the title, though she lives and works in Manhattan as that age-old vocation of many a rom-com: book editor. Her exploits include a new boss (she's mean!) and a new lover (he's old!), played by Baldwin. Writer/director Marc Klein relies on two stories from Girls' Guide to intertwine her dealings with both: Old man Archie gives Brett career advice, then gets drunk and cheats on her. Almost as an aside, Brett's dad gets sick and dies. That's pretty much the

Continue reading: Suburban Girl Review

Green Street Hooligans Review


Weak
Lately, Elijah Wood has been very busy trying to establish himself as an actor apart from his role as Frodo in the obsessively popular Lord of the Rings phenomenon. Portraying peculiar supporting characters in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Sin City, and Spy Kids 3-D, he's definitely made a valiant effort. He continues with Green Street Hooligans, this time attempting to play a tough guy. This is a first for Wood... and, hopefully, a last.

Originally titled just Hooligans, the film begins as a Harvard journalism student named Matt (Wood) is wrongfully expelled. To escape from his father's judgment, he jumps aboard a plane headed to London to visit his sister (Claire Forlani) and her husband Steve (Marc Warren). Almost immediately -- maybe out of rebellion, maybe out of curiosity -- he ditches sis and her hubby to hit the local pubs and football games (soccer for Americans) with Steve's irresponsible brother, Pete (Charlie Hunnam), and his band of hard-edged, hooligan friends.

Continue reading: Green Street Hooligans Review

Green Street Hooligans Review


Weak
Lately, Elijah Wood has been very busy trying to establish himself as an actor apart from his role as Frodo in the obsessively popular Lord of the Rings phenomenon. Portraying peculiar supporting characters in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Sin City, and Spy Kids 3-D, he's definitely made a valiant effort. He continues with Green Street Hooligans, this time attempting to play a tough guy. This is a first for Wood... and, hopefully, a last.

Originally titled just Hooligans, the film begins as a Harvard journalism student named Matt (Wood) is wrongfully expelled. To escape from his father's judgment, he jumps aboard a plane headed to London to visit his sister (Claire Forlani) and her husband Steve (Marc Warren). Almost immediately -- maybe out of rebellion, maybe out of curiosity -- he ditches sis and her hubby to hit the local pubs and football games (soccer for Americans) with Steve's irresponsible brother, Pete (Charlie Hunnam), and his band of hard-edged, hooligan friends.

Continue reading: Green Street Hooligans Review

The Wedding Planner Review


Grim
Ah, welcome to San Francisco, the place I call home. It's a city of exorbitant housing costs where we're facing two years of electricity blackouts, and it's home to some of the most ridiculously magical romances ever conceived. (See also: The Bachelor.)

In what is either a sassy updating of the fable of marriage or a vicious lambasting of its sanctity, depending on your point of view, The Wedding Planner presents us with Jennifer Lopez and Matthew McConaughey as an unlikely pair who somehow manage to get together -- against all odds, of course.

Continue reading: The Wedding Planner Review

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