Tony Genaro

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The Milagro Beanfield War Review


Excellent
Who'd of thought that a battle over water rights would make for such an interesting tale? This small movie, Robert Redford's second directorial endeavor after Ordinary People, is surprisingly watchable and gripping, despite a terrible title and a setup that would have mainstream audiences running for the exits. In a tiny New Mexico town, a huge resort development is getting underway, and the locals are getting trampled underfoot. But not Joe Mondragon (Chick Vennera, the spitting image of Bruno Kirby), who diverts water from the resort project onto his small bean field. Naturally, the titular war develops: Corporate America vs. the little guy -- with the media thrown in for a kick. Surprisingly lively stuff, full of local character, fun performances, and a plot that builds up steam faster than you'd think. It's Jean de Florette, Western style, and the kind of movie John Sayles wishes he could make.

Tremors 3: Back To Perfection Review


OK
Once you figure out their mode of attack, those mutated worm creatures (i.e., Graboids) are pretty goddamned easy to kill. Straight-to-video sequel Tremors 3: Back To Perfection opens with survivalist and full-time "Big Monster Hunter" Burt Gummer (Michael Gross, having fun) down in Argentina wiping out an entire colony of Shriekers (the further evolved Graboids from Tremors 2: Aftershocks) with an antiaircraft gun. The rules of engagement are becoming old hat for Burt, who's taken to inviting news crews to film his mass destruction.

Back to basics. Our man Burt returns home to Perfection, the one-horse town plagued by killer wormies in the original Tremors. Things are a little different now -- this community has become something of a tourist attraction for gawkers to snap photos of El Graboids. The worms have their own Dark Horse comic book on the racks, for God's sake! Obnoxious Melvin Plug (Robert Jayne, the whiny little kid from the original Tremors all grown up, one of many recurring characters) is seizing up all the property as a grand-scale capital investment, harboring ideas of transforming this quaint little village into Condo Central. Safari Jack (Shawn Christian, a new face) takes families out on phony Graboid hunts for a few bucks. Burt's pretty disgusted by the whole thing, if you wanna know the truth.

Continue reading: Tremors 3: Back To Perfection Review

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