Jack Warden

Jack Warden

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12 Angry Men Review


Essential
Who would have thought that a movie which almost entirely takes place in one room, consists of 12 men who do nothing but talk -- and who don't even have names -- would be such a searing experience? 12 Angry Men is a classic, and an undisputed one at that, a film that is as inspiring as it is well-crafted behind the scenes.

The story is a simple one: 12 jurors are asked to decide the fate of a young man who is accused of killing his father. If guilty, he will be sentenced to the electric chair. Otherwise he goes free. The evidence is overwhelmingly against him: Two eyewitnesses, a murder weapon known to be bought by the killer, and an alibi that he couldn't remember during questioning. Open and shut, but one juror stands alone against the other 11, who'd like to get home in time for dinner. And with that single "not guilty" vote, Henry Fonda's Juror #8 sets off the titular anger.

Continue reading: 12 Angry Men Review

...and Justice For All. Review


Very Good
Sorry to break it to you, but the line "The whole system's out of order!" does not appear in ...And Justice for All., Norman Jewison's send-up of the American legal system and one of the films with the most complicated punctuation ever to be released

The actual line that Al Pacino bellows out in the film's final scene, in case you're wondering, is this: "You're out of order! You're out of order! The whole trial is out of order! They're out of order!" Nah, doesn't quite roll off the tongue the same way, does it?

Continue reading: ...and Justice For All. Review

Everybody Wins Review


Weak
Everybody wins... except the audience, in this initially promising but ultimately baffling waste of a movie, another flick in a long line of Debra Winger thrillers. You know, the kind with a knife on the cover of the DVD, separating her from the male lead. Right. Oddly, there's no blood-covered knife to be found in Everybody Wins: The body count is exactly one, and even that is totally bloodless (despite it occuring during a head-on collision between motorcycle and truck). The plot is barely worth explaining: A "good samaritan" (Winger) hires a flashy P.I. (Nick Nolte) to clear a teenager of his murder conviction. Why the erraticly behaved Winger is interested in this kid turns out to be the big mystery in the film, not the obviousness of his innocence. Nolte turns out to be the surprisingly only thing worth watching here. Who knew such an awful movie (and that title) could come from the pen of Arthur Miller?

The Great Muppet Caper Review


Very Good
"Great?" I'm not sure about that, but this minor kiddie classic is reasonably entertaining, if only for the chance to see Charles Grodin falling in love for a stuffed pig.

The film opens with amazing promise: Immediately dazzling us with a plethora of Hollywood in-jokes (the poking of fun begins with Kermit and Fozzie mocking the opening credits). A musical number ensures us of the myriad thrills and chills that will soon arrive.

Continue reading: The Great Muppet Caper Review

The Great Muppet Caper Review


Very Good
"Great?" I'm not sure about that, but this minor kiddie classic is reasonably entertaining, if only for the chance to see Charles Grodin falling in love for a stuffed pig.

The film opens with amazing promise: Immediately dazzling us with a plethora of Hollywood in-jokes (the poking of fun begins with Kermit and Fozzie mocking the opening credits). A musical number ensures us of the myriad thrills and chills that will soon arrive.

Continue reading: The Great Muppet Caper Review

Bulworth Review


Good
You know, I've seen Network before, and it's a much better film.

Bulworth is, in the kindest of words, an "homage" to that picture, and at least it has an excellent role model. Simply take the story about a TV newsman who goes nuts, stirs up controversy, and fatally angers the establishment and change it to a US Senator who does the same thing, and you've got Bulworth.

Continue reading: Bulworth Review

A Dog Of Flanders Review


Weak
One of my standard pieces of advice for parents searching for movies that both they and their kids can enjoy is to seek out live-action animal films in which the pets do not talk. Normally, such films are philosophical lightweights -- not raising any issues at all. Also, they are propaganda lightweights -- not placing in the standard moral imperatives that you find in children's movies.

A Dog of Flanders is one of many exceptions to this rule.

Continue reading: A Dog Of Flanders Review

The Replacements Review


Weak
I wish I could have been in the pitch meeting for this ridiculous notion of a sports film. I bet it was some hotshot Warner Brothers agent with an dark Armani suit and manicured fingernails saying, "It would be a very light comedic version of Any Given Sunday, and we could throw in the Hoosiers angle with the casting of Gene Hackman as the tough but determined coach. Throw in that hunk of a guy Keanu Reeves and a cast of wacky characters and poof! We'll have a hit on our hands!"

The Replacements is a hokey mistake of a football film, a mishmash collage of one-dimensional characters, rampant stereotypes of cultures and races, cliched emotional statements of purpose, and Keanu Reeves wishing for The Matrix sequel to start principal photography. The story is loosely based around the pro football players' strike in 1987 and a rag-tag team of replacement football players taking up the reins of professional play for a variety of teams with names like the Washington Sentinels. Keanu Reeves stars as Shane Falco, a has-been football college player looking for redemption. Gene Hackman dons a fedora like Tom Landry and speaks with gusto like a certain coach in Hoosiers.

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Being There Review


Extraordinary
If we're to believe 2004's The Life and Death of Peter Sellers, the Briton who seemingly defined the term "comic actor" was an angry shell of a man, a vacant vessel who stumbled his way through life. Given that, could there be a more brilliant or appropriate final hurrah for Sellers than Being There?

In his final big role before his death, Sellers brings to life a man called Chance, a feeble-minded and quiet middle-aged gardener in a Washington, D.C. mansion he's never left. Chance's life - which consists of tending to the small garden, taking meals prepared by another servant, and watching and mimicking television - is shattered when the patron of the manse passes away and the house is sold, forcing Chance out into the harsh world he's never experienced.

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While You Were Sleeping Review


Weak
In case you aren't already prepared, brace yourself for a literal onslaught of summer movie romances. While You Were Sleeping is one of 1995's early entries. It certainly isn't going to be the best.

As heavily promoted as it's been, you should know the plot by know. Sandra Bullock is Lucy, a goofy, salt-of-the-earth Chicago Transit Authority toll booth attendant who falls in love (at first sight) with Peter (Peter Gallagher), a yuppie lawyer. Almost immediately after Lucy swoons, Peter gets pushed onto the train tracks, whereupon Lucy comes to the rescue. Then the obligatory "misunderstanding" occurs: Peter's concerned parents think Lucy is Peter's fiancee, pulling Lucy into the family as a new member. But when Peter's brother Jack (Bill Pullman) arrives on the scene, Lucy and Jack begin to fall in love and, well...you get the picture.

Continue reading: While You Were Sleeping Review

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Jack Warden Movies

Bulworth Movie Review

Bulworth Movie Review

You know, I've seen Network before, and it's a much better film.Bulworth is, in the...

A Dog Of Flanders Movie Review

A Dog Of Flanders Movie Review

One of my standard pieces of advice for parents searching for movies that both they...

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The Replacements Movie Review

The Replacements Movie Review

I wish I could have been in the pitch meeting for this ridiculous notion of...

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