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Thomas Langmann, Berenice Bejo, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin, Michel Hazanavicius, Missi Pyle, Penelope Ann Miller and Academy Awards - Producer Thomas Langmann, Jean Dujardin, director Michel Hazanavicius, James Cromwell, Uggie the dog, Berenice Bejo, Penelope Ann Miller, and Missi Pyle Sunday 26th February 2012 84th Annual Academy Awards (Oscars) held at the Kodak Theatre - Press Room

Thomas Langmann, Berenice Bejo, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin, Michel Hazanavicius, Missi Pyle, Penelope Ann Miller and Academy Awards
Thomas Langmann, Berenice Bejo, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin, Michel Hazanavicius, Missi Pyle, Penelope Ann Miller and Academy Awards
Thomas Langmann, Tom Cruise and Academy Awards
Thomas Langmann, Tom Cruise and Academy Awards
Thomas Langmann, Tom Cruise and Academy Awards
Thomas Langmann, Tom Cruise and Academy Awards

James Cromwell, Academy Of Motion Pictures And Sciences and Academy Awards - James Cromwell and wife Anne Ulvestad, Sunday 26th February 2012 84th Annual Academy Awards (Oscars) held at the Kodak Theatre - Arrivals

James Cromwell, Academy Of Motion Pictures And Sciences and Academy Awards
James Cromwell, Academy Of Motion Pictures And Sciences and Academy Awards

James Cromwell and Independent Spirit Awards - Anna Stuart and James Cromwell Saturday 25th February 2012 27th Annual Independent Spirit Awards at Santa Monica Beach - Arrivals

James Cromwell and Independent Spirit Awards
James Cromwell and Independent Spirit Awards
James Cromwell and Independent Spirit Awards

Michel Hazanavicius, James Cromwell, Penelope Ann Miller, Thomas Langmann and Independent Spirit Awards - Richard Middleton, Michel Hazanavicius, Penelope Ann Miller, Thomas Langmann and James Cromwell Saturday 25th February 2012 27th Annual Independent Spirit Awards at Santa Monica Beach - Press Room

Michel Hazanavicius, James Cromwell, Penelope Ann Miller, Thomas Langmann and Independent Spirit Awards
Michel Hazanavicius, James Cromwell, Penelope Ann Miller, Thomas Langmann and Independent Spirit Awards
Michel Hazanavicius, James Cromwell, Penelope Ann Miller, Thomas Langmann and Independent Spirit Awards
Michel Hazanavicius, James Cromwell, Penelope Ann Miller, Thomas Langmann and Independent Spirit Awards
Michel Hazanavicius, James Cromwell, Penelope Ann Miller, Thomas Langmann and Independent Spirit Awards
Michel Hazanavicius, James Cromwell, Penelope Ann Miller, Thomas Langmann and Independent Spirit Awards

James Cromwell Monday 13th February 2012 1st Annual Golden Collar Awards celebrates Hollywood's most talented Canine

James Cromwell
James Cromwell
James Cromwell
James Cromwell
Missi Pyle, Beth Grant and James Cromwell
Missi Pyle, Beth Grant and James Cromwell

James Cromwell Sunday 12th February 2012 The 2012

James Cromwell
James Cromwell and Penelope Ann Miller

James Cromwell - James Cromwell, Patricia Ward Kelly Monday 6th February 2012 AARP's 11th Annual Movies For Grownups Awards at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel

James Cromwell
James Cromwell
James Cromwell
James Cromwell
James Cromwell
James Cromwell

Missi Pyle and James Cromwell - Missi Pyle, James Cromwell, Tuesday 31st January 2012 at the Commendation from The City of Los Angeles to 'THE ARTIST'.

Missi Pyle and James Cromwell
Missi Pyle, Beth Grant, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin, Ken Davitian and Penelope Ann Miller
Missi Pyle, Beth Grant, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin, Ken Davitian and Penelope Ann Miller
Missi Pyle, Beth Grant, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin and Penelope Ann Miller
Missi Pyle and Beth Grant
Missi Pyle and James Cromwell

Berenice Bejo, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin, Missi Pyle, Penelope Ann Miller and Directors Guild Of America - Michel Hazanavicius, Berenice Bejo, Penelope Ann Miller, Jean Dujardin, Missi Pyle and James Cromwell Saturday 28th January 2012 64th Annual Directors Guild of America Awards held at The Grand Ballroom - Press Room

Berenice Bejo, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin, Missi Pyle, Penelope Ann Miller and Directors Guild Of America
Berenice Bejo, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin, Missi Pyle, Penelope Ann Miller and Directors Guild Of America
Berenice Bejo, Jean Dujardin and Directors Guild Of America
Berenice Bejo, Jean Dujardin and Directors Guild Of America
Berenice Bejo, Jean Dujardin and Directors Guild Of America
Berenice Bejo, Jean Dujardin and Directors Guild Of America

James Cromwell and Directors Guild Of America Saturday 28th January 2012 64th Annual Directors Guild of America Awards held at The Grand Ballroom - Arrivals

James Cromwell and Directors Guild Of America

James Cromwell Friday 27th January 2012 2012 Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Awards held at Soho House - Arrivals

James Cromwell
James Cromwell
James Cromwell
James Cromwell
James Cromwell
James Cromwell

James Cromwell Saturday 21st January 2012 The 23rd Annual Producers Guild Awards held at The Beverly Hilton - Arrivals

James Cromwell
James Cromwell

Missi Pyle, James Cromwell, Golden Globe Awards and Beverly Hilton Hotel - Missi Pyle and James Cromwell Sunday 15th January 2012 The 69th Annual Golden Globe Awards (Golden Globes 2012) held at The Beverly Hilton Hotel - Arrivals

Missi Pyle, James Cromwell, Golden Globe Awards and Beverly Hilton Hotel
Missi Pyle, James Cromwell, Golden Globe Awards and Beverly Hilton Hotel
Missi Pyle, James Cromwell, Golden Globe Awards and Beverly Hilton Hotel
Missi Pyle, James Cromwell, Golden Globe Awards and Beverly Hilton Hotel
Missi Pyle, Golden Globe Awards and Beverly Hilton Hotel

Berenice Bejo, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin, Missi Pyle and Penelope Ann Miller - Michel Hazanavicius, Berenice Bejo, Penelope Ann Miller, Jean Dujardin, Missi Pyle, James Cromwell Thursday 12th January 2012 17th Annual Critic's Choice Movie Awards - Pressroom

Berenice Bejo, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin, Missi Pyle and Penelope Ann Miller
Berenice Bejo, Jean Dujardin, Missi Pyle and Penelope Ann Miller
Berenice Bejo, Jean Dujardin, Missi Pyle and Penelope Ann Miller
Berenice Bejo and Jean Dujardin
Berenice Bejo and Jean Dujardin
Berenice Bejo

Berenice Bejo, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin, Malcolm McDowell, Penelope Ann Miller and Grauman's Chinese Theatre - Berenice Bejo, Jean Dujardin and Uggie, Penelope Ann Miller, Michel Hazanavicius, Malcolm McDowell, James Cromwell Hollywood, California - AFI Fest 2011 Premiere Of The Artist Tuesday 8th November 2011

Berenice Bejo, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin, Malcolm Mcdowell, Penelope Ann Miller and Grauman's Chinese Theatre
Berenice Bejo, Jean Dujardin and Grauman's Chinese Theatre
Berenice Bejo and Grauman's Chinese Theatre
Berenice Bejo and Grauman's Chinese Theatre
Berenice Bejo, James Cromwell, Jean Dujardin, Penelope Ann Miller and Grauman's Chinese Theatre
Berenice Bejo and Grauman's Chinese Theatre

James Cromwell Tuesday 8th November 2011 out and about in Beverly HIlls Los Angeles, California

James Cromwell
James Cromwell
James Cromwell
James Cromwell
James Cromwell

James Cromwell Saturday 19th March 2011 25th Anniversary Genesis Awards held at The Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel - Arrivals Los Angeles, California

James Cromwell

Tippi Hedren, James Cromwell and Kristin Davis - Tippi Hedren, Kristin Davis and James Cromwell Los Angeles, California - 25th Anniversary Genesis Awards held at The Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel - Press Room Saturday 19th March 2011

Tippi Hedren, James Cromwell and Kristin Davis
Tippi Hedren and Kristin Davis
Tippi Hedren and Kristin Davis
Tippi Hedren and Kristin Davis
Tippi Hedren and Kristin Davis
Tippi Hedren and Kristin Davis

James Cromwell Thursday 13th January 2011 Film actor James Cromwell leaves a restaurant after having lunch Beverly Hills, California

James Cromwell

James Cromwell and Walt Disney Thursday 30th September 2010 Premiere of Walt Disney Pictures' 'Secretariat' held at The El Capitan Theater - Arrivals Los Angeles, California

James Cromwell and Walt Disney

The Queen Review


Excellent
In a year already riddled with modern benchmarks in U.S. history, Stephen Frears now enters the deal with a reenactment of a worldwide tragedy: the death of Princess Diana and the subsequent rupture in public faith in the Royal Family. It's a tricky proposition: where most portraits of the Queen and her brood are either overly-stiff (for comedy's sake) or drab-as-death (for drama), Frears tries to show the family as no-bull normal people with dabs of sarcasm, sass and humor that could rub viewers the wrong way.

It begins with the landslide election of Prime Minister Tony Blair (a shockingly good Michael Sheen) and moves to the car accident that led to Di's death. Frears then meditates on the decisions and the struggle between modernism and tradition that Queen Elizabeth (Helen Mirren) and her family must consider in the wake of not just a familial, but worldwide, day of mourning. For those who don't remember, after the death, there was major pressure for the family to mourn in public, to show their grief and prove that even though Di wasn't part of the family anymore, they were still in a state of solemnity.

Continue reading: The Queen Review

Romeo Is Bleeding Review


Good
Lena Olin is up to her old tricks again, as are Gary Oldman, Juliette Lewis, and Annabella Sciorra, in this twisted tale of a slightly corrupt cop and the company he keeps. Not much about Romeo is Bleeding sticks with you for long, the exception being Olin's shrieking hit-woman who ends up with one arm... Delightfully bizarre.

The Green Mile Review


Excellent
The Green Mile? Let's talk about 26 miles. The length of a marathon. Start the race and the movie together: The race would long be over before the film. The winner would be at home, taking a nap. Yes, The Green Mile is three hours long.

Not that long movies have never been successful, and not that The Green Mile is bad. You might even think a long movie is required here. Pulled from Stephen King's acclaimed series of six books by the same name, King returns to the kind of work he was doing in The Shawshank Redemption (based on a short story of his), the kind that seems to perform the best, away from splatter and gore, and into the minds of the strangest of characters.

Continue reading: The Green Mile Review

L.A. Confidential Review


Excellent
L.A. Confidential, despite what you've heard, is not the best film in 20 years. It's not even the best film of 1997 (current titleholder: In the Company of Men). But if you consider all films ever made that have the nasal Danny Devito providing voice-over work, L.A. Confidential is certainly at the top of that list.

Comparisons to Chinatown are obvious and appropriate. Both films take place in the Los Angeles of yesteryear, feature multi-layered crime riddles, and have stars with questionable morals as ersatz heroes. And both are very good. While Brian Helgeland and Curtis Hanson's script isn't the tight masterpiece that Chinatown is (the writers meander for a good 45 minutes before his story starts to shape up), and Faye Dunaway wasn't half the cheeseball that Kim Basinger is as the femme fatale, L.A. Confidentialmakes the audience do what few films of the 90s have achieved: think.

Continue reading: L.A. Confidential Review

Fail Safe (2000) Review


Very Good
CBS -- of all places -- remade the original, masterful Fail-Safe, a cautionary tale about nuclear war, jammed full of big name movie stars (check out that cast!), and shot in black and white from Walter Bernstein's original screenplay. It's a very faithful remake, even though the production values (it's shot on video) are atrocious. It's a fabulous original film and a worthwhile redo -- but it comes about 20 years too late. Why waste time remaking a tale about nuclear war with the Soviet Union -- a country that no longer existed -- in this millennium? Still, it's worth a look if you're a fan of the original.

The Snow Walker Review


Very Good
A little The Edge, a little Dances with Wolves, this adventure oddity is surprisingly watchable while featuring two stars who never learn to fully communicate.

Barry Pepper is a bush pilot named Charlie Halliday who takes ill Inuit woman Kanaalaq (Annabella Piugattuk) on a routine flight, only to have it go down in the remote wilderness of the tundra. (Lucky for them it's summertime.) The survive the crash, but Kanaalaq is too sick to walk for help, so Charlie heads out on his own. He gets lost (and attacked by bees), but Kanaalaq has secretly tracked him, and she nurses him back to health. Eventually they try to trek back to the plane (which no one has found, weeks later), and from there they finally opt to try to trek back to civilization after Kanaalaq has taught Charlie extensive survival skills.

Continue reading: The Snow Walker Review

The Sum Of All Fears Review


Weak
The biggest mystery in The Sum of All Fears is not how terrorists manage to smuggle a nuclear bomb into downtown Baltimore. Rather, it's how CIA operative Jack Ryan, formerly played by Alec Baldwin and Harrison Ford, has suddenly become 30 years younger and has turned into a junior agent at the CIA with only a few months of experience. In the hands of Ben Affleck, Ryan is no longer the commanding veteran he once was in films like Patriot Games. Now he's little more than a jerky teenager with a hot girlfriend and a chip on his shoulder.

I won't try to explain the metamorphosis of Ryan because it's never mentioned in the movie (and no, it's not a prequel; the film takes place in the present). Central to the plot is the hunt for an old nuclear bomb lost by the Israelis in 1973 and recovered, sold, and rebuilt by various arms dealers, terrorists, and neo-Nazi groups decades later. Their idea is to blow up the bomb in the U.S., blame it on the Russians, ignite a massive nuclear response from both sides, and -- in the greatest stretch of imagination ever to strike a Hitler enthusiast -- somehow survive WWIII and seize control of the world in the aftermath.

Continue reading: The Sum Of All Fears Review

Babe Review


Excellent
Baa ram ewe. The already-classic kiddie flick wins raves for its groundbreaking animation and a theme that is both child-accessible while not insulting to adults. Plus, that little pig is so darn cute.

The Longest Yard (2005) Review


Weak
Sports and sponsorships go together better than Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes.

AutoTrader.com dumps millions into a deal with ABC for Monday Night Football rights. Olympic highlights are now known as "Chevy Moments." The currency flooding the pro sports market is getting out of hand. Independent filmmakers could make 71 different Blair Witch projects for the amount of money Anheuser-Busch spent on one 30-second Super Bowl commercial.

Continue reading: The Longest Yard (2005) Review

I, Robot Review


Weak
The question most on my mind pre-I, Robot was can any futuristic post-Minority Report sci-fi thriller really stack-up to Steven Spielberg's masterpiece? If this film is any indication, then the answer is definitely no. While it may not be completely fair to compare the two, there's no denying that Report clearly set the standard for films with future-minded worlds. If nothing else, Report should have motivated Robot to be a much better film.

Robot is inspired by ideas found in Issac Asimov's anthology of the same name, though screenwriters Jeff Vintar and Akiva Goldsman don't follow any one specific novel verbatim. As in the literary works, the robots must abide by the following laws: 1) A robot may not injure a human or, through inaction, allow a human to come to harm; 2) a robot must obey orders given to it by a human, except where it would conflict with the first law; and 3) a robot must protect itself, as long as that protection doesn't violate either the first or second law. Of course these rules will be broken.

Continue reading: I, Robot Review

Babe: Pig In The City Review


Terrible
The problem with sequels is that they try too much to be like the original. Sure, there are a few exceptions. I can't think of any right off the top of my head, but rule #665 in The Critic's Bible: there are exceptions to every rule. Babe, by all accounts, was an intelligent, thought out movie. Babe II: Pig in the City, tries and tries but can't quiet do it.

Sure, the humor is moderately intelligent and the narration includes things like a mention of the chaos theory, but when it boils down to it, Babe II was just like every other sequel: an attempt to carbon copy the original. But, friends, the great copy machine known as Hollywood is broken, and has never gotten a repairman, so we are doomed to watch screwed up attempts at copying, remakes gone wrong, and things screwed up.

Continue reading: Babe: Pig In The City Review

Snow Falling On Cedars Review


OK
The transformation of an intricate novel into a successful film can be a daunting task. Filmmakers must effectively generate symbolism and imagery onto the screen, instead of allowing the readers to interpret it for themselves. That's why people are always saying that a movie was never as good as the book.

Unfortunately, Snow Falling on Cedars, directed by Scott Hicks (Shine), is a prime example of an unsuccessful interpretation of a tremendous novel.

Continue reading: Snow Falling On Cedars Review

Space Cowboys Review


OK
The good news about Space Cowboys is that Clint Eastwood proves to be a skilled comedic director. The bad news is that only the first half of the movie is a comedy - the second half is a sloppy attempt at a heart-pounding, Apollo 13ish, mission-gone-haywire space drama that's vague, oversimplified and unbelievable. There's a gem of an entertaining movie somewhere in there, but it's never fully realized.

The plot is solid high concept. If you did a double-take when you first heard that John Glenn would return to space, you'll love the basic premise of Ken Kaufman's and Howard Klausner's script - four daring, old Air Force codgers weasel their way back into NASA's space shuttle program to attempt an equipment repair mission that only they know how to perform. Our movie visions of strapping, young astronauts (Dennis Quaid, Bill Paxton, Ben Affleck, to name a few) are smashed once we see an aging James Garner pull on an airtight suit.

Continue reading: Space Cowboys Review

A Slight Case Of Murder Review


Excellent
TNT continues to prove itself as a powerhouse of made-for-TV filmmaking. This modern noir, with Macy as a put-upon film critic who accidentally kills one of his girlfriends and tries to cover it up, is relentlessly entertaining. I could do without the commercials every eight minutes, though. William H. Macy co-wrote the script.

The Bachelor Review


Weak
There are two types of comedies coming out of Hollywood today: adult-oriented star-vehicles and teen-oriented ensemble pictures. You can say what you will about the preponderance of whining, post-modern Dawson's Creek reprises stocking our airwaves and movie theaters, but you can't say much at all about the vacuous one-trick pony known as the modern Hollywood romantic comedy. So I will keep my comments on The Bachelor brief.

In full, the plot of The Bachelor is that Chris O'Donnell has 27 hours to tie the knot, which would assure him of a $100 million inheritance and cozy jobs for life for himself and all of his friends. Unfortunately, he already monumentally botched his proposal to his girlfriend, Renee Zellweger (I won't bother with character names here; I didn't remember them, you won't either). Wacky hijinks ensue, and we all hope desperately it will work out for the best between Chris and Renee.

Continue reading: The Bachelor Review

Spirit: Stallion Of The Cimmaron Review


Weak
Man, are we mean to horses. At least, that's what I got out of DreamWorks' Spirit: Stallion of the Cimmaron, an old west campfire tale told from the perspective of a wild horse that paints an unflattering portrait of American pioneers, using traditional animated techniques.

The horse in question we come to know as Spirit, leader of the Cimmaron herd and a victim of his own curiosity. An unnecessary trip down to a cowboy campground earns Spirit a pair of lassos around his neck for his troubles, and the rough riders turn the reluctant buck over to the Army for labor.

Continue reading: Spirit: Stallion Of The Cimmaron Review

Star Trek: First Contact Review


Very Good
People tend to measure the quality of a Star Trek movie in relation to those near it in the cycle. Compared to episodes before (5 and 7) and those that followed (9 and 10), this eighth installment of the unkillable series is surprisingly watchable.

Jonthan "Riker" Frakes is at the helm this time, taking the Next Generation crew on its first mission without the original series cast. The setup comes fast, as Frakes trots out one of the series' most reliable villains: The Borg. Building from the mythology set up in the series, Picard (a former Borg captive) has a serious axe to grind, and when Starfleet ends up in a skirmish with an invading Borg ship, he defies orders and engages them in battle. The day is won, but an escape pod shoots from the ship, tunnels through time (stop rolling your eyes), and lands on earth. We see the effects immediately: The Borg has completely taken over the planet. The only sensible solution: Follow the Borg through the time hole and try to wipe 'em out in the past.

Continue reading: Star Trek: First Contact Review

The General's Daughter Review


Good
I really like John Travolta. He always plays that guy with the arrogance and cockiness, but it never seems old to me. In last year's A Civil Action, he played a lawyer who just thought the world of himself. In The General's Daughter, he still gets to play that character, but he has to go new places with it.

The General's Daughter surrounds army cop Paul Brenner (Travolta), and in a James Bond movie type style, he's finishing up another case before the real story even begins. The real story comes into play when a woman is found on a military base staked spread eagle to the ground, naked, and very dead. This isn't just any woman though. She is Captain Elizabeth Campbell, the daughter of famous General Joseph Campbell (James Cromwell). So what really happened? And of course the big question, who did it?

Continue reading: The General's Daughter Review

RKO 281 Review


Good
Not terribly compelling but interesting for Welles and Kane buffs, RKO 281 (the production number of Citizen Kane during filming) dramatizes the ups and downs of a brash Orson Welles and his clash with William Randolph Hearst, the man on whom Kane was based. RKO 281 adds little to the Kane mythology, though the real origin of "Rosebud" is something I'll always cherish.

See also The Battle Over Citizen Kane for the straight documentary version.

Continue reading: RKO 281 Review

The Longest Yard Review


Weak
When Adam Sandler isn't interesting enough to hold yourattention in an Adam Sandler movie, something is certainly amiss. In "TheLongest Yard" -- an off-balance remake of Burt Reynolds' 1974 prison-footballcomedy -- the star's underwritten character loses all sense of personalityafter the opening scene, in which his washed-up, alcoholic loser, ex-NFLquarterback leads police on a drunken high-speed chase.

Thus imprisoned in a dusty desert lock-up where the abusive,steroid-pumped guards (all played by wrestlers or former pro football linemen)have their own pigskin league, Sandler is compelled by the nasty warden(James Cromwell) to coach a scabby team of inmates for his boys to beatup on in practice. But for some reason known only to the screenwriter,these practices never happen. Instead, the movie follows the standard BigGame plot, and Sandler (who doesn't have the body mass to be credible asa former football player) recruits and trains the biggest, meanest prisonershe can find, then leads them onto the field himself (with Reynolds' helpas another ex-NFL inmate) for a full-contact finale picked up by ESPN2for a novelty national broadcast.

Unfortunately, once he's in the hoosegow and sobered up,all the bite goes out of Sandler's QB and he is severely upstaged by thecast of crazies (Cloris Leachman is the warden's aged, sex-mad secretary,Tracey Morgan leads the transvestite cheerleading squad) and muscle-boundtoughs (Brian Bosworth, Michael Irvin, Bill Romanowski, Steve Austin, BillGoldberg, etc.). Most of these guys can barely act, but at least directorPeter Segal ("50First Dates") figures out how to use themfor laughs.

What Segal can't seem to do is get a handle on the movie'sbalance of comedy and drama, on one hand relying heavily on race-basedone-liners (ChrisRock plays the joint's resident wisecracker),while on the other trying for moments of poignancy that fall awkwardlyflat. Because "The Longest Yard" takes itself seriously at times,it's harder to forgive the occasional gigantic plot hole -- like the factthat the inmates seem to have access to any room they want in the penalcomplex, even getting into the guards' locker room and personnel files.

Continue reading: The Longest Yard Review

The General's Daughter Review


Bad

Only three or four minutes after the lights go down, any credibility "The General's Daughter" might have as a serious drama goes right out the window with the introduction of the title character.

At a retirement party for The General (James Cromwell), a military banquet hall is filled with brass honoring their commander. The camera searches row after row of stern-looking, spit-and-polish men before moving into a close-up of his daughter (Leslie Stefanson), a hot babe of the underwear model variety, smiling a centerfold smile and, except for her uniform, looking for all intents and purposes like she should be jumping out of a cake.

Forgoing the opportunity for a relatively realistic female officer portrayal like Demi Moore in "A Few Good Men," "The General's Daughter" asks us to believe that this porcelain blonde, who looks like she'd cry if she broke a nail, is not only an army captain but a doctor -- a shrink who instructs soldiers in the psychological warfare, no less.

Continue reading: The General's Daughter Review

I, Robot Review


Terrible

In turning Isaac Asimov's groundbreaking, intellectually and morally challenging series of stories entitled "I, Robot" into a summer blockbuster, director Alex Proyas ("Dark City," "The Crow") has stripped it of even the smallest hint of intelligence or originality. Instead the movie offers only superstar Will Smith as a wisecracking, stunt-driving, guns-a-blazin', future-cop action-hero cliché -- who bears no resemblance to anything in Asimov's book (although there may have been a character with the same name).

Detective Del Spooner may live amid self-driving cars and abundant automatons in the year 2035 (which looks as if it was created on leftover "Minority Report" and "A.I." sets), but he's a shopworn 20th century anachronism -- a newly divorced, rebellious cop (complete with a butt-chewing lieutenant to take away his badge) who has a theory no one believes.

See, Spoon (gotta have a nickname) thinks a robot committed a murder -- throwing his corporate-scientist creator out a skyscraper window. But of course everyone else is downright stubborn about the fact that this simply cannot be. Robots made by the monopolistic U.S. Robotics are hard-wired with three base rules that supposedly make it impossible for them to harm a human being. That safety protocol is why they've become prevalent in homes and menial jobs around the world. (Naturally, no mention is made of the job losses this must have caused.)

Continue reading: I, Robot Review

The Sum Of All Fears Review


OK

If there's any movie that might have been wise to shelve after Sept. 11, "The Sum of All Fears" is it. Of course, I can't tell you why without giving away a big part of the movie (which the TV commercials already give away). But suffice it to say if you're the least bit sensitive about terrorist explosions, steer well clear of this thing.

The movies that did get delayed in the wake of last year's attacks were either action-movie cartoonish ("Collateral Damage's" skyscraper bombing), tongue-in-cheek ("Big Trouble's" lax airport security and smuggled nuke) or unfortunate coincidences ("Sidewalks of New York" featured the twin towers prominently in several backgrounds).

This one portrays in all seriousness an enormously catastrophic terrorist attack, then virtually ignores its repercussions, casualties and aftermath except as they relate to a pseudo-intellectual political intrigue plot (substantially retailored from Tom Clancy's novel) about neo-Nazis trying to start World War III.

Continue reading: The Sum Of All Fears Review

Space Cowboys Review


Good

When septuagenarian astronaut John Glenn returned to space two years ago, phones probably started ringing all over Hollywood with pitches for the kind of high-concept audience-pleaser launched this week as "Space Cowboys."

Somebody was bound to write a connect-the-dots orbital adventure script about, say, a foursome of former test pilots who, 40 years after being passed over for the space program, are NASA's only hope to rescue the Earth from a dangerous satellite in a decaying orbit.

"Grumpy Old Men In Space" people would call it, and in the hands of 90 percent of the directors in Hollywood, that's all it might have been -- even if they got, say Clint Eastwood, Tommy Lee Jones, James Garner and Donald Sutherland to play the crotchety, never-grow-up team of rocket boy retirees.

Continue reading: Space Cowboys Review

Snow Falling On Cedars Review


Good

Supremely cinematic and richly drawn in penetrating, slow-burn emotions, "Snow Falling On Cedars" is a truly transporting, layered, period drama that uses the railroading murder trial of a Japanese-American in post-war Washington state as the backdrop for a story about the lasting scars of injustice.

Director Scott Hicks' prestige follow-up to "Shine," one of the films that led the 1996 independent film insurgence into the mainstream, this passionate adaptation of Dave Guterson's deeply layered novel (scripted by the director and screenwriter Ron Bass) stars Ethan Hawke as a reticent newspaperman and war vet who covers the trial and pursues the truth on his own while becoming awash in memories of his forbidden first love -- with a Japanese girl who is now the defendant's wife.

Told initially from Hawke's point of view, as the trial unfolds, its scope widens to include the memories of others, like the girl (Youki Hudoh, a Japanese actress and pop star with an startling, yet understated, emotional range), who remembers being separated from Hawke at first by cultural taboos and then by the government order that sent her family -- and all the Japanese on their quiet forest island -- to internment camps for the duration of the war.

Continue reading: Snow Falling On Cedars Review

Spirit: Stallion Of The Cimmaron Review


OK

Take away Hans Zimmer's self-important score and the endless parade of gratingly whiney (or should I say whinny?) soundtrack anthems by 1980s blue-collar rocker Bryan Adams, and "Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron" has the heart of a winning animated mini-epic about a proud young mustang in the vast expanses of the Old West.

Gorgeously painted in scenic sunset and columbine field watercolors, and narrated (by Matt Damon) from the horse's point of view, it is a grand adventure that encompasses cowboys and Indians, the U.S. cavalry and the western charge of the railroad. But the music is like a lasso around the picture's neck, preventing the story from running free (which is ironically what most of the songs are about) and dating it so badly that the film doesn't have a chance of standing the test of time.

After a few brief scenes of Spirit as a playful pony, story proper begins when the handsome brown bronco is captured by the Cavalry and taken to a fort where a Custer-like commander (voiced by James Cromwell) resolves to break him and make him a soldier's mount. An amusing corral sequence follows as the defiant, determined Spirit bucks, kicks and throws rider after rider.

Continue reading: Spirit: Stallion Of The Cimmaron Review

James Cromwell

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James Cromwell Movies

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom Trailer

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom Trailer

The dinosaurs are under threat in the sequel to 2015’s 'Jurassic World', which reunites Bryce...

Marshall Trailer

Marshall Trailer

Thurgood Marshall (Chadwick Boseman) is well known for becoming the first African American Supreme Court...

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The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

The Promise Trailer

The Promise Trailer

Michael is a promisingstudent living in Armenia during the Ottoman Turkish Empire, who agrees to...

Big Hero 6 Movie Review

Big Hero 6 Movie Review

Fans of bright, flashy things will love this colourful, kinetic animated adventure, although anyone seeking...

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Big Hero 6 Trailer

Big Hero 6 Trailer

Hiro Hamada is a young robotics virtuoso whose best friend is a large, balloon-like humanoid...

The Artist Trailer

The Artist Trailer

George Valentin is a silent movie star in 1920's Hollywood. His latest film, A Russian...

The Artist Movie Review

The Artist Movie Review

Made as a 1920s-style silent movie, this hugely enjoyable film is already a classic. And...

Secretariat Trailer

Secretariat Trailer

Penny Chenery never really thought she would take over the family racing stables but as...

Surrogates Movie Review

Surrogates Movie Review

Lean and sleek, this futuristic thriller propels us entertainingly through its story without pausing for...

Surrogates Trailer

Surrogates Trailer

Watch the trailer for SurrogatesIn Surrogates, a new phenomenon has totally altered the world we...

W. Trailer

W. Trailer

Watch the trailer for W.Critics around the world are hailing Josh Brolin's performance in W....

W. Movie Review

W. Movie Review

As President Bush's second term winds down and the race for 2008 spins at fevered...

Becoming Jane Movie Review

Becoming Jane Movie Review

Newly minted young star Anne Hathaway stars as a twentysomething Jane Austen in Becoming Jane,...

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