Phoebe Cates

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the premiere of 'The Extra Man' at Village East Cinema

Kevin Kline and Phoebe Cates - Kevin Kline, daughter Greta Simone Kline and Phoebe Cates Monday 19th July 2010 at Village East Cinema New York City, USA

The 81st Annual Academy Awards (Oscars) - Arrivals

Phoebe Cates, Kevin Kline and Academy Of Motion Pictures And Sciences - Phoebe Cates and KevinKline at the Kodak Theatre Hollywood, California - The 81st Annual Academy Awards (Oscars) - Arrivals Sunday 22nd February 2009

The 81st Annual Academy Awards (Oscars) - Arrivals

Phoebe Cates, Kevin Klein and Academy Of Motion Pictures And Sciences - Phoebe Cates and Kevin Klein at the Kodak Theatre Hollywood, California - The 81st Annual Academy Awards (Oscars) - Arrivals Sunday 22nd February 2009

Bright Lights, Big City Review


Weak
As a college student hoping for a career in the "glamorous world of magazine publishing" back in the '80s, I was captivated by Jay McInerney's 1984 novel Bright Lights, Big City, which depicts that world but tears away most of the glamour. Still, it made New York seem tremendously exciting.

The 1988 cinematic version doesn't quite measure up. McInerney may have aspired to be the F. Scott Fitzgerald of his time, the movie suffers from the same fate as the Robert Redford version of The Great Gatsby: miscasting.

Continue reading: Bright Lights, Big City Review

I Love You to Death Review


Excellent
It's a film never particularly loved by audiences and unlikely to be rehabilitated by critics in the future, but I Love You to Death is nevertheless the perfect example of an overlooked gem. Coming right in the middle of director Lawrence Kasdan's extremely earnest period (The Accidental Tourist in 1988 and Grand Canyon in 1991), I Love You to Death took its cue from one of those true stories of horrific Americana that come bubbling through the tabloid mediasphere every few months and mined it for all its comic potential.

Kevin Kline plays Joey Boca - a guy who runs a pizza parlor in Seattle - as an oversexed, extremely Italian workaholic who is able to explain his chronic infidelity by saying with a straight face, "I'm a man, I got a lotta hormones in my body." It's a clown's performance, a filmmaker doesn't bring Kline in for this sort of role and demand subtlety but rather one that's so over-the-top it achieves a kind of genius that Kline also showcased in his similarly stereotypical role in A Fish Called Wanda (in that one, he played a clown's view of an American abroad, here he's the clowning pizza man, bad accent, bushy mustache and all).

Continue reading: I Love You to Death Review

Bodies, Rest & Motion Review


OK
The early '90s were a bonanza for indie filmmakers. Digital video hadn't hit the scene yet, so producers had to raise a lot of money to buy film and equipment, and they often got access to indie-friendly celebs to help them with the picture. Bodies, Rest & Motion is a high-end indie archetype, and it's populated by nothing but stars. The story is also proto-'90s-indie: Four aimless slackers, each with a spurious agenda, couple, de-couple, and go nuts at random. The driving force, if you can call it that, is Tim Roth's sudden urge to leave Arizona for Butte, Montana ("The city of the future!"), which culminates in his girlfriend (Bridget Fonda) sleeping with the guy (Eric Stoltz) who comes to paint their house. Because in 1993, that's just what you did. It's overall well-acted but often too stupid to bear.

The Anniversary Party Review


Grim
I have long admired Jennifer Jason Leigh for her courage in the face of critical adversity, cheering every mumble in Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle, clinging for dear life to the screwed warble-songs of Georgia. Sadly, "The Ballad of Jenny" went askew this year when she decided to continue her particular Brand X of raw performance, churning out snarly but predictably intense perfs in The King is Alive and her own co-directed The Anniversary Party.

Along for the ride, helping her pen this Party of lovey-dovey actors in a disgruntled group hug, is none other than her Cabaret co-star, Alan Cumming. Together, they're a force to be reckoned with: the crème de la crème of indulgence. Playing a bisexual writer and an aging starlet who never won an Academy Award, they are in effect exorcising their jitters toward an unsuspecting audience. Whether you're willing to go along for the ride is entirely up to you, but this critic found it to be deadly dull. Too much poisoned ice cream will give you a headache.

Continue reading: The Anniversary Party Review

Drop Dead Fred Review


Terrible
Ouch. Phoebe Cates, lost in obscurity since Fast Times at Ridgemont High and Gremlins, made this utter bomb in 1991, and poor Carrie Fisher got drawn into the mess, too. The story of a grown woman with an invisible/imaginary friend, the movie is unfortunately aimed at teens/kids instead of twentysomethings who would have appreciated another chance to get a glimpse of Cates in the buff. Alas, it just was not to be. Atrocious and utterly unfunny.

Fast Times At Ridgemont High Review


Excellent
What, you ask, is this movie of movies? This one which you've heard about? It's an eighties thing, with not much appeal for the modern troupe because its slower paced, less funny, than what you might see today. But, like a lot of eighties movies, it holds its own merit. This adaptation of the book by Cameron Crowe (don't know who he is? I'll give you a hint. He wrote and directed the famous line "Did you know the human brain weighs eight pounds?" That's right, the maker of Jerry Maguire and Singles) is a coming-of-age drama about a young girl making the choice all of us make, sex or a relationship.Sure, we tell ourselves that both can exist, and they can, but there is the line that she draws: if she wants to sleep around or if she wants to have something to hold onto. And the movie, in a nutshell, is about that. It follows her and her friends during their last year in High School in the small town of Ridgemont. Where each one of them ends up with their troubles, ranging from no girlfriend to an abortion to adultery. It sounds serious, right?That's not quite on target.The movie has its serious moments, but it has its funny moments too: from two girls practicing blow jobs on a carat at a lunch table to a guy cruising for chicks dressed in a pirate cap. The movie is sublimely funny. And interesting. It's very sad, in my mind, that those things are so rarely seen in the 90s.

I Love You to Death Review


Excellent
It's a film never particularly loved by audiences and unlikely to be rehabilitated by critics in the future, but I Love You to Death is nevertheless the perfect example of an overlooked gem. Coming right in the middle of director Lawrence Kasdan's extremely earnest period (The Accidental Tourist in 1988 and Grand Canyon in 1991), I Love You to Death took its cue from one of those true stories of horrific Americana that come bubbling through the tabloid mediasphere every few months and mined it for all its comic potential.

Kevin Kline plays Joey Boca - a guy who runs a pizza parlor in Seattle - as an oversexed, extremely Italian workaholic who is able to explain his chronic infidelity by saying with a straight face, "I'm a man, I got a lotta hormones in my body." It's a clown's performance, a filmmaker doesn't bring Kline in for this sort of role and demand subtlety but rather one that's so over-the-top it achieves a kind of genius that Kline also showcased in his similarly stereotypical role in A Fish Called Wanda (in that one, he played a clown's view of an American abroad, here he's the clowning pizza man, bad accent, bushy mustache and all).

Continue reading: I Love You to Death Review

Gremlins Review


OK
Funny how we remember old movies as being better than they really are. I first saw Gremlins as a little kid, and I loved the film so much that my parents got me a Gizmo doll for Christmas that year. In fact, even though they don't make Gizmo toys anymore, Gremlins will still please kids today with its juvenile story involving vicious little monsters wreaking havoc on adults.

However, watching the movie recently I found flaws I didn't notice before. While I used to hide under blankets when the evil gremlins appeared, I now laugh at the shallow, one-dimensional characters, the idiotic, repetitive storyline, and especially the corny special effects.

Continue reading: Gremlins Review

The Anniversary Party Review


OK

Making a Hollywood story with a decidedly un-Hollywood flair, co-writers, co-directors and co-stars Jennifer Jason Leigh and Alan Cumming take a casual, almost guerilla approach to their collaborative conception called "The Anniversary Party."

It's a shoestring production shot cinema vérité style in which these two gifted journeyman actors play a shaky show biz couple throwing themselves a sixth anniversary bash even though they've just recently and tentatively reconciled after a big infidelity blow-up.

Their guests -- movie stars, directors, industry types and hangers-on -- seem vaguely uncomfortable congratulating Sally and Joe Therrian (Leigh and Cumming) on their longevity under the circumstances. But in a town where fakery is the norm, it's easy for everyone to put on a happy face -- even the non-industry next-door neighbors (Denis O'Hare and Mina Badie) who have been invited only in an attempt to ease tensions over a barking dog dispute that's threatening to turn legal.

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Phoebe Cates

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