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Noise (2007, U.S.) Review


Good
I hate car alarms as much as the next guy, but make a feature film -- with Tim Robbins and William Hurt -- as a thinly-veiled diatribe against noise pollution? That's about as obsessive as it gets.

Noise offers Robbins as David Owen, a supernaturally angry New Yorker who eventually snaps after one too many car alarms distrub his piece and quiet. Rather than, say, move out of Manhattan, Owen takes a hammer, baseball bat, wire cutters, and whatever else is handy to demolish cars that ring out for no reason. Later he moves on to wayward building alarms (apparently a problem in New York). Soon he's running an organized, mapped-out campaign as "The Rectifier," disabling vehicles and cutting their battery wires across the city, leaving behind a sticker as a calling card.

Continue reading: Noise (2007, U.S.) Review

Noise (2007, U.S.) Review


Good
I hate car alarms as much as the next guy, but make a feature film -- with Tim Robbins and William Hurt -- as a thinly-veiled diatribe against noise pollution? That's about as obsessive as it gets.

Noise offers Robbins as David Owen, a supernaturally angry New Yorker who eventually snaps after one too many car alarms distrub his piece and quiet. Rather than, say, move out of Manhattan, Owen takes a hammer, baseball bat, wire cutters, and whatever else is handy to demolish cars that ring out for no reason. Later he moves on to wayward building alarms (apparently a problem in New York). Soon he's running an organized, mapped-out campaign as "The Rectifier," disabling vehicles and cutting their battery wires across the city, leaving behind a sticker as a calling card.

Continue reading: Noise (2007, U.S.) Review

Basic Instinct 2 Review


Bad

Paul Verhoeven, director of the original Basic Instinct, must be great in bed. The women in his films attest to this assumption. They don't just make love - they soar athletically about bedrooms and swimming pools. They don't simply orgasm - they erupt, cascade and convulse. Who can forget the otherwise forgettable Elizabeth Berkeley's rodeo pool ride atop the bucking and bullish Kyle Maclachlan in Verhoeven's surrealistically brilliant Showgirls? And no man could etch from his memory the opening of the original Basic Instinct - where a woman reaches such a state of thrill in conjugation that with her climax comes the crushing force of an ice pick into her partner's chest. Quite a release! If art imitates life and artists draw from experience, Verhoeven clearly has another skill set somewhat more impressive than his directorial abilities. Verhoeven's energy, his thrust if you will, informs Basic Instinct 2, a sequel he wisely chose to avoid.

In the tradition of hyperbolic orgasms, the opening of Basic Instinct 2 finds us in a car with Catherine Tramell (Sharon Stone) pleasuring herself with the hand of a drugged passenger while speeding through the streets of central London. Howling to her peak, Tramell drives the car through a roadblock and into the Thames. She survives. Her passenger does not. The accident and its involvement with popular author Tramell becomes a sensation and a mystery to the bottom of which detective Washburn (David Thewlis), a hard-worn London cop, seems unusually desperate to get. Tramell, in the course of the investigation, is sent to visit Dr. Michael Glass (David Morrissey) in order to undergo a psychiatric evaluation. As those viewers of the first film know, an interview with Tramell is no tame affair; an immediate attraction grows between doctor and patient that will end inevitably in blood, tears, and plenty of the good stuff that defined Verhoeven's earlier film.

Continue reading: Basic Instinct 2 Review

Basic Instinct 2 Review


Bad
Paul Verhoeven, director of the original Basic Instinct, must be great in bed. The women in his films attest to this assumption. They don't just make love - they soar athletically about bedrooms and swimming pools. They don't simply orgasm - they erupt, cascade and convulse. Who can forget the otherwise forgettable Elizabeth Berkeley's rodeo pool ride atop the bucking and bullish Kyle Maclachlan in Verhoeven's surrealistically brilliant Showgirls? And no man could etch from his memory the opening of the original Basic Instinct - where a woman reaches such a state of thrill in conjugation that with her climax comes the crushing force of an ice pick into her partner's chest. Quite a release! If art imitates life and artists draw from experience, Verhoeven clearly has another skill set somewhat more impressive than his directorial abilities. Verhoeven's energy, his thrust if you will, informs Basic Instinct 2, a sequel he wisely chose to avoid.

In the tradition of hyperbolic orgasms, the opening of Basic Instinct 2 finds us in a car with Catherine Tramell (Sharon Stone) pleasuring herself with the hand of a drugged passenger while speeding through the streets of central London. Howling to her peak, Tramell drives the car through a roadblock and into the Thames. She survives. Her passenger does not. The accident and its involvement with popular author Tramell becomes a sensation and a mystery to the bottom of which detective Washburn (David Thewlis), a hard-worn London cop, seems unusually desperate to get. Tramell, in the course of the investigation, is sent to visit Dr. Michael Glass (David Morrissey) in order to undergo a psychiatric evaluation. As those viewers of the first film know, an interview with Tramell is no tame affair; an immediate attraction grows between doctor and patient that will end inevitably in blood, tears, and plenty of the good stuff that defined Verhoeven's earlier film.

Continue reading: Basic Instinct 2 Review

The Believer Review


Weak
Religious doubt leads to violence in this slice-of-lifer that won the Grand Jury Prize at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival -- now finally making tentative steps in general release.

Jewish self-hatred is an interesting foundation for a film, if only because it's a subject never explored by an industry still apologizing for the Holocaust. The lengths to which someone will go to redefine and prove themselves a member of the enemy circle are certainly compelling. But when the main character in question dives between extremes without a single clear definition of his motives, the strength of the narrative suffers. A double life can only work when you are aware of some of the triggers that push some semblance of reality into the character in question.

Continue reading: The Believer Review

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Basic Instinct 2 Movie Review

Basic Instinct 2 Movie Review

Paul Verhoeven, director of the original Basic Instinct, must be great in bed. The women...

Basic Instinct 2 Movie Review

Basic Instinct 2 Movie Review

Paul Verhoeven, director of the original Basic Instinct, must be great in bed. The women...

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