Daniel Lynch is a high ranking Navy fighter pilot and a respected member of the squadron; possibly one of the last people anyone would think of as becoming the subject of a scandal. However, he is harbouring a deep secret that only comes to light when he is discovered to be having a homosexual relationship with fellow aviator Matt Blackwood. This all comes about in the midst of a government investigation which has been launched to determine the cause of two fatal aircraft accidents believed to have come about over suspicious circumstances. Suddenly, Lynch and Blackwood find themselves treated like criminals as their relationship becomes the main subject of the investigation. Lynch's best friend Will Stephenson is hurt by their secret, while everyone else is doing what they can to quash this scandal before Naval reputations become tarnished.
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Six years after his Harvard cred, Hynes seems to have returned to more fertile and vital ground with The Go-Getter, his second full-length film and a minor hit at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival. Hynes, who also wrote the film, never shows up on screen but the nerdy impresario he embodied years ago can be seen in the guise of Mercer White (Lou Taylor Pucci), a high-school dropout who takes to the road with a stolen car not long after his mother's death. Initially, Mercer's voyage has two goals: to find and inform his half-brother Arlen (Jsu Garcia) of their mother's death, and to get all sweaty-like with Joely (Jena Malone), a thong-sporting, middle-school crush of Mercer's.
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Ironically, this incident, where ship's cook Dorie Miller took charge and shot back during America's worst hour on December 7, 1941, is just about the only true event to be found in the entire, oppressive three-hour film. (And our producers are quick to remind us of just how ripped-from-history this little vignette is. Never mind that Gooding has a pitiful excuse for a role with maybe five minutes of screen time.)
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The hardest thing about an outsider trying to infiltrate a subculture and explain it to the masses is that the truth is often lost in the translation. Toback throws together a huge canvas of characters and actors in attempt to create a clear picture of why white kids are motivated to impersonate black rappers' lifestyles and why rich whit guys treat black rappers like Arnold and Willis from Diff'rent Strokes.
Continue reading: Black And White (1999) Review
After spending 90 minutes in a screening during which the highlight was a print that caught on fire and melted halfway through the performance, I'm not terribly closer to knowing myself.
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No! You take a role in Gone in 60 Seconds, and try to extend your movie muscle even further! Here's a movie that's pure, unabashed Hollywood: Randall "Memphis" Raines (Cage), in order to convince a mean criminal to spare the life of his brother (Giovanni Ribisi), must BLOW UP 50 cars in the next 72 hours!
Continue reading: Gone In 60 Seconds (2000) Review
Although "October Sky" is a film with no surprises from its soundtrack of '50s rock 'n' roll standards to its triumph over adversity themes, this teen-years biography of a NASA scientist who got his start building rockets in his basement is so full of spirit and letter-perfect filmmaking that I defy anyone to watch this movie without getting a tingle in his or her heart.
Thrilling in the best sense of the word, traditional without being corny and with a script, photography and symbolism that could be the basis of a film literature textbook, "October Sky" is a classic in the making. It's just a pity it wasn't released in time for Oscar consideration.
The picture stars Jake Gyllenhaal as Homer Hickman, a coal miner's son determined to break away from his assumed destiny following in his father's bleak and dangerous subterranean footsteps.
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In Spike Jonze and Charlie Kaufman's ingeniously idiosyncratic showbiz semi-farce "Adaptation" there is a running gag about a typically bogus Hollywood-thriller screenplay called "The 3," in which a preposterous, nonsensical twist ending reveals the three main characters to be different personalities in a schizophrenic's mind.
In this week's "The Butterfly Effect," a superficially chilling high-concept horror movie full of paradox-packed time-loop contortions, the entire plot depends on just such cursory twists, none of which stand up to much intellectual scrutiny.
Stoner-comedy staple Ashton Kutcher -- who, like a young Keanu Reeves, is hard to take seriously in any non-stoner role -- stars as Evan Treborn, a double-psychology major (snicker, snicker) working on an memory assimilation thesis inspired by blackouts he suffered as a child during several traumatic events.
Continue reading: The Butterfly Effect Review
The handful of battle scenes that make up a good hour of "Pearl Harbor" are adrenaline-pumping and hyper-realistic on a massive scale.
You feel the impact of every single 7.7mm round from dive-bombing Japanese Zeros as they rip through pavement, planes and people in the infamous attack around which the film in centered. Director Michael Bay's camera goes inside cockpits, rides along on bombs from release to explosion, captures the terror of a torpedo in the water from the deck of a ship and includes some of the best special effects ever put on film.
The money shot is a hull-buckling blast that rips through the USS Arizona. It makes being on a luxury liner hit by an iceberg look like a 25-cent carnival ride.
Continue reading: Pearl Harbor Review