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The Day After
Tomorrow (R, 2004) ... Average:
(Dennis Quaid, Jake Gyllenhaal, Emmy Rossum, Ian Holm, Dash
(CLICK HERE for "Neurotic &
Some comments on The Day After Tomorrow:
Best part of the movie: The guy getting killed in a hail storm.
Worst part of the movie: Every other part.
Best actor: Ian Holm...but only because it reminded me that he
played Bilbo in LOTR and that
led to thoughts of Viggo Mortenson and Orlando Bloom and well... mmmmmmmm.
Worst actor: Everyone else.
Best 'very obvious foreshadowing': The chick cutting her leg but only
because it led to the "Books are good for more than burning" line...and the
very quick diagnosis of blood poisoning.
Worst 'very obvious foreshadowing': "Hey, Bob...look at this! The
huge bear didn't break out of the zoo...but that pesky pack of wolves did."
Best use of a line said in every disaster movie: "Mr. Vice
President...if we don't act now there could be serious consequences."
Worst use of a line said in every disaster movie: "I made my son a
promise. I'm going to keep it." (Even though I ended up getting my friend
killed and only arrived to save my son AFTER he was out of danger.)
Supposed scariest part of the movie: Computer generated animals
attacking kids in a kitchen (Jurassic Park, anyone?).
Actual scariest part of the movie: Raft inflating when it was
totally unexpected. (Okay...it made me scream...but in hindsight I was the
only one who did.)
Best computer generated animal: The homeless guy's dog. (Oh
wait...I've just been told that was a real dog. My apologies to the
Worst computer generated animal: The pesky pack of wolves. (And
they were most certainly not real. As Carter always says, "It's hard to get
good wolf help nowadays.)
Best part about the ending: Sam looking at his dad and giving him a
smile that says, "Hey half the world is dead...probably most of my friends
are dead. But look...this chick put her head on my shoulder which means
when this ice age is over...I'm getting laid."
Worst part about the ending: When the lights came up, I realized I
spent 8 bucks to see this piece of crap movie.
Will this movie inspire people to worry about global warming? Hell no!!
Will this movie inspire the people of Berks County to buy all the bread at
the grocery store? Of course!
So I give it 2 stars...because there is really nothing I love better than
seeing people get killed by big chunks of hail. Glad that FINALLY made it
into a movie.
Below is an excerpt from an email I later got from Kirsten. --YPCM
I was talking to a friend of mine who mentioned the movie would have been
better if more people had died. I reminded her that 1/3 of the world's
population did, in fact, die. To which she replied, "No, the main
characters. Then they would have shut up already."
Calm (R, 1988) ... Average: 3.5
(Sam Neill, Nicole Kidman, Billy Zane)
Well they didn't have to spend much on extras! Neill, Kidman and
Zane play the only three roles in this suspenseful thriller that is like
Cujo on a boat, where Zane is the dog and Neill and Kidman are trying to
escape with their lives.
Neill and Kidman play a husband and wife who have just lost their young
only son in a car accident and plan to sail the Pacific for a month or so
on their yacht to get away, and help Kidman deal with the grief before
returning home for the first time since the accident. Zane plays a
guy who Neill and Kidman rescue as a lone survivor from his sinking
ship. He claims that the other five aboard the ship had died of food
poisoning. Of course, Zane is not what he appears to be.
The movie doesn't waste any time building up to a climax that seems to
last for much of the movie. It becomes obvious that Zane is deranged
about 5 minutes after he makes his appearance on screen, and the terror
begins. Neill boards the sinking ship and is confronted with a
horrifying situation, as he realizes that Zane had killed everyone on
board. Zane then takes off with the yacht - with Kidman on it -
leaving Neill behind stranded on the crippled boat.
Kidman is afforded about a half dozen opportunities to kill Zane at the
very end, which, after hours of terror, would have been what any normal
person would have done. Instead the audience is left to roll its
collective eyes when she decides to do things like just tie him up or lock
him in a room behind a door seemingly made of balsa wood. And, of
course, a guy who seems like he should be dead - stabbed, drugged, a
harpoon thru his shoulder and thrown in a raft in the ocean wasn't good
enough? Is this guy Superman? Oh, and here's a thought - why not throw him in the
ocean WITHOUT the raft?!?! You've essentially killed him, why give
him a freaking RAFT?!
The main, albeit minor, flaw of the movie is that it didn't end when it
had a good opportunity. There is a point where the movie seems like
it clearly should be over...and then continues to roll on as Neill and
Kidman go BACK to find Zane - OK, why? Why would you do that?
Of course, that turns out to be near disaster and another moment of terror that seems
nothing more than gratuitous. The movie still would have been more
than entertaining without the unnecessary "extra" ending.
I certainly don't mean to make too big of a deal out of the negatives -
they are actually quite small in comparison to the way the movie made your
heart race. All-in-all, I really liked this movie. I actually
saw it in the theater in 1988, and rented it again in 2002. This was
Nicole Kidman's first feature film and she does a splendid job, and Billy
Zane is so convincing as a mad-man. I definitely recommend this
chilling suspenseful thriller.
(R, 1972) ... Average:
(Burt Reynolds, Jon Voight, Ned Beatty, Ronny Cox, Ed O'Neill)
Deliverance is a story about a group of four businessmen who take what
turned out to be an ill-fated canoe trip down a river in the deeeeeep
backwoods of Georgia before the river is flooded by a dam being built for
a hydro-electric facility. And when I say "backwoods" I mean so far
into the backwoods that there are no dentists within hundreds of miles,
and the people are about as unfriendly as the scenery is beautiful.
Outside of one particularly disturbing scene, the rest of the movie is
essentially just a constant uneasiness waiting for something terrible to
happen thanks to people in serious need of dental work, intermixed with
rapids. It does do a good job allowing your imagination to run wild
with the possibilities of impending doom.
The movie is from 1972, and I'm probably one of the last people to see it,
so maybe someone can email me and tell me what I missed. During
"disturbing" scene, two of the canoe people stop off to the side of the
river and are ambushed by two "mountain men" who tie them up, and rape one
of them. Just as you're waiting to see what they intend to do with
the guy that wasn't raped, the other two canoers see what is happening and
shoot one of the cavity people with a bow-and-arrow. The other
plaque-and-tartar guy flees into the woods. From there the entire
premise of the movie is based on the fact that all four of them think they
are in deep trouble for murder, hide the body, and then try to come up
with the best fabricated story. Ummmmm, why??????????? For the
record, if I'm getting raped by hillbillies, and you've got a
bow-and-arrow, you damn well better shoot them!
Regardless, I did enjoy the movie, despite the weak underlying premise and
the somewhat cheesy 70's dialog. The movie is considered an American
classic. It was good, yes, but a classic?
Bigalow: Male Gigolo (R,
1999) ... Average: 0.0
(Rob Schneider, William Forsythe, Eddie Griffin, Arija
Bareikis, Gail O'Grady)
Why is it everyone who has ever held a spot on "Saturday Night
Live" gets to make an least one movie, no matter how
miserably-written or insipid the end-product roll of celluloid
fundament-wipe they give us? Except in the cases of Eddie Murphy, Mike
Myers, Bill Murray, and a select others (who are now either dead or
close-to-dead), most of alumni of "SNL" produce a fetid
exhalation for a brief moment, like their fame, and not-quickly-enough
fade into the ether from which their fame-mongering, talentless lives
sprang. I guess Rob Schneider, who can't fade fast enough, thinks this
burst of cinematic brilliance will rival "Ace Ventura," since it
copies its formula so closely.
I'm not going to pretend for a minute that I liked this movie or attempt
to feign subtlety. This movie is as subtle on the senses as Marlon Brando
wearing a day-glo thong...and trying to act like this drivel could even
remotely pass as entertainment is worse than kicking my mother down a
flight of stairs on her birthday. Let's take a look at this car-wreck of a
The movie stars Rob Schneider, of "Saturday Night Live," and
"Men Behaving Badly," as a career tropical fish tank cleaner.
He's so inept in love, that he has to buy some sea snails just in the hope
that the girl behind the counter at the fish store will dip her T-shirt
into the tank. WHen Deuce sees a handsome stud named Antoine (Oded Fehr,
"The Mummy") with a hot babe, he is filled with envy, especially
when he finds out the babe is paying the stud, who is a gigolo.
Many "plot" complications result. These "plot"
complications are about as challenging to the intellect as watching paint
dry. The fearsome gigolo hires the doe-eyed, innocuous tank-cleaner to
baby-sit his valuable fish while he goes to Switzerland. Being the
predictably slow-witted loser that he is, Deuce, of course, breaks the
fish tank into a million pieces one day accidentally. Now, Deuce has three
weeks to make everything right before Antoine comes home. Where's he going
to get the scratch to fix the tank? A phone call from one of Antoine's
lusty clients provides a way out, and before you can sing along with the
first line of Blondie's "Call Me," Deuce's professional life
makes an emergency turn toward the gigolo's trade. He is well-advised by a
pimp, who is an expert on what the movie calls (only about a million
times) "man-whores." Enough of the lurching Schneider and his
male-fantasy impossibilities! Schneider is as charismatic as a post and
has the acting ability of a tree stump.
From this dismal juncture, the plot takes on a handful of predictable set
pieces as T.J. Hicks (played by Eddie Griffith), Antoine's pimp, sets
Deuce up with women who are too tall, too heavy, carry sleep disorders or
are given to stupid outbursts. Yet, despite the suspicions of an
exhibitionist LAPD detective (ever-mumbling and waddling William
Forsythe), Deuce doesn't actually do anything with the women except tend
to their insecurities the way he tends to sick fish. Only Kate (Arija
Bareikis), who seems perfectly normal, makes him want to do more than
"just talk." (What would you guess the chances are that she
later finds out he was paid for their first date and gets mad at him?)
Oooh, the suspense.
There is a scene where Deuce the gigolo dates a woman so gigantic that her
feet are almost too large for him to massage. I mean these are seriously
large feet! Now, this would be funny...if I'd just had a frontal lobotomy,
or if I were 15-years old. My earwax is more interesting than this kind of
There is another scene where a pimp lectures Deuce on his place in the
gigolo food chain. It is an illustrated lecture, with three varieties of
tropical fish discussed as the visual aids. Deuce is not like the rare
imported fish or even the beautiful domestic fish, but the bottom-feeding
scavenger, down there with the plastic scuba diver. This isn't funny
either. In fact, Clint Eastwood said almost the exact same dialogue in
"Sudden Impact," which must've came out almost ten years ago.
Not for nothing is Deuce's dad a washroom attendant. This movie belongs on
the floor of a washroom, or in the bottom of a toilet. The jokes amount to
a series of skits that carry you down into a long, dull slog, that even by
current "SNL" standards is abysmal excrement. The
"plot" demonstrates what people will do for money, and does this
horrendous, shameful movie. One of my favorite words is "gardyloo."
The word refers to a cry formerly used in Edinburgh, to warn passers-by to
beware of slop being thrown out of a window. It's actually a real word,
however seldom used. "Deuce Bigelow" is a movie so stinking of
someone's unwashed cheese-toes, that it is hard to accept as real. It's
real alright, and let my review be your gardyloo.
(PG, 2000) ... Average: 3.0
(D.B. Sweeney, Alfre Woodard, Julianna Margulies, Ossie
Davis, Joan Plowright)
HERE to go to Tony Porco's Movie Reviews Page)
I remember reading ages ago in the Guinness Book of World Records that the shortest-ever print review was
for a Broadway musical called Wham! The review consisted of one word--"Ouch!" I
must confess that I was tempted to approach that record with my review of Dinosaur, offering only five
words--"Extraordinary animation and little else." To be honest, I am still
sorting out whether my decision to be more verbose was fair, or overly generous.
It must be said that "extraordinary" is almost too un-generous a word to describe this movie's animation; in
fact, no words I can come up with can do it justice. Unlike Jumanji (the only
movie I have seen, apart from Jim Henson's Dark Crystal, which bears much resemblance to this one), the
computer-generated figures made me forget they were computer-generated figures in about three minutes, and I
hardly gave the matter a thought after that. Furthermore, the Disney people
clearly did their homework in terms of how large animals move, what plant life
looked like in the Mesozoic era, how different dinosaur species were similar
or disparate, and so on. Not merely this animation, but all the visual elements of the film--the
cinematography, the art, the effects, the location shooting (done in four different countries!)--are up to the
usual high Disney standard. The problem is that nagging little necessity known
as a plot, which is, unfortunately, up to Disney's usual high level of
hokiness. These dinosaurs (not to mention the group of lemur-like mammals that befriend them) just happen to
talk. They also argue, have ethnic diversity, make lame, child-pleasing jokes, and try to escape the bad guys,
the evil "carnotaurs" (a pair of tyrannosaurus who, inexplicably, do not talk).
Obviously, this isn't the first Disney movie featuring talking, anthropomorphic
animals. The problem that this movie has, and that the earlier ones did not
have, is the jarring incongruity between the realism of the animation and the
unbelievability of the whole animal-personification thing. I wonder if this dissonance was even necessary--why did the dinosaurs have to talk at all? (If this sounds too
non-commercial, keep in mind that the dinosaurs in Fantasia weren't exactly
loquacious.) That aside, if you want to see this movie, definitely see it in a
theater. The transition to a small screen will undoubtedly soften the punch
of the animation, which is really the only reason to see it.
(R, 1999) ... Average: 2.5
(Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Linda Fiorentino, Chris Rock,
Salma Hayek, Jason Mewes)
I read Chris' review before watching this film. I agree that as a
comedy this movie falls short. However, I determined to watch the movie as
a drama. It was much better. I recommend this movie to all Catholics. If
you spent any time involved in Catholic education, on any level, you will
find a subtle humor weaved into the movie revolving around the church's
Jason Mewes steals most scenes in which he appears. If
you aren't currently in love with Linda Fiorentino you will be after
This movie is presently in just behind "American Beauty" in
top rentals at Blockbuster. Must be a weak field of competition
because this movie is just plain B-A-D awful.
The premise of the movie is that two fallen Angels (Affleck and Damon)
condemned to roam Wisconsin forever (OK, that's kind of funny now that I
typed that) find a loop-hole in Catholicism that will allow them back in
to heaven. A motley cast of characters - prophets, arch-angels, the
13th apostle (Chris Rock), and an abortion clinic worker (Fiorentino) -
appointed by God (played by Alanis Morrissette - yes, THAT Alanis
Morrisette) attempt to stop them. I admit, that sounds like the
foundation for a good comedy, which is what I thought from reading the
synopsis on the back of the box. Don't be fooled!
This movie is long, long, long (2-hours-and-8-minutes-plus-previews) and not
filled with more than maybe 10 minutes of legitimate good humor - and all
of that humor comes solely from Jason Mewes (below left) who plays one of the
prophets. Let's face it, there's a lot that you could poke fun about
the Catholic religion, so
coming up with good material shouldn't have been that hard. And
based on all the complaints from die-hard Catholics when this movie
debuted in the theaters, you would have thought this movie had found some
of that good old fashioned you-Catholics-are-so-wacky jokes that are
classic (like the ones found in Monty Python movies.) Did those
Catholics even see the movie? Even the jokes about the Catholic
religion where so stupid they were tame.
What I found incredibly odd was that it was firmly established from the
outset of the movie that you were watching a comedy. Yet, why was it
that there were such looooong stretches where there was almost no attempt
at humor (aside from random comments from Mewes' character)? The
ending scene, in particular, was soooooo drawn out and not the least bit
Say a Word (R, 2001) ... Average: 3.5
(Michael Douglas, Famke Janssen, Sean Bean, Jennifer
Oliver Platt, Brittany Murphy, Syke McCole Bartusiak)
Michael Douglas plays a noted child psychologist whose daughter is
kidnapped and held hostage. Douglas will get his
daughter back if he can get a unknown specific number from a catatonic
patient who has ties to the kidnappers in a way that unfolds throughout the
movie. It's your basic formula of high-priced thieves against
regular-Joe who rises to the occasion, solves the mystery on his own, and
gives the bad-guys their due with little help from anyone else. This
one's intelligent and it plays well.
Douglas's character has just
six hours to obtain the number which is interesting because the time elapsed in the movie is only four hours more
than the actual length of the movie, so there is a unique feel that you
are living through the entire experience in real-time.
The acting in "Don't Say a Word" is flawless. Michael
Douglas is one of the most tremendous dramatic actors of my time.
Although this is, admittedly, pretty much a similar role to what he has
played a few times before, he doesn't disappoint here, hitting this one
Brittany Murphy plays one of Douglas's patients, and she is fantastic as
the catatonic violent psycho. (I guess she should be as she played a
prominent role as a psycho in the classic "Girl,
Interrupted" as well.)
Syke McCole Bartusiak, who plays Douglas's kidnapped little girl, is soooo
cute! Maybe I'm more in tune with such things now that Bev is 21
weeks pregnant, but this little girl really had me star-struck. Her
sunny smile and youthful exuberance was perfect for her role in this
movie. It made your want for her to be back with her family that
much more intense.
The only real plot flaw that I can think of is - why would the murderous
kidnappers give such a tight deadline? After all, they waited 10
years to get out of jail, what would hurt if they gave Douglas plenty of
time to get the information they wanted?
All-in-all it was a very good movie, full of more than enough plot twists
to keep the audience entertained. I even came close to giving it a
FOUR, but settled on 3.5 - it's better than most of my 3.5's, but I just
couldn't quite give it a 4.
Jeopardy (R, 1999) ... Average: 3.0
(Tommy Lee Jones, Ashley Judd)
Down to Earth
(PG-13, 2001) ... Average: 3.5
(Chris Rock, Regina King, Mark Addy, Eugene Levy, Frankie
Faison, Wanda Sykes)
Bev actually rented this thinking it was just Chris Rock stand-up,
only to find out it was a legitimate movie. Rock essentially plays
himself. He's a budding comedian in the movie, with aspirations to
play the last amateur night at the Apollo. Unfortunately he is
killed when he's hit by a bus; which was, truly, an accident since he
wasn't supposed to die yet - it was a screw-up by his guardian angel.
Since heaven feels badly for the mistake, the angels agree to allow him
to continue living on earth as soon as they can find him a new body.
Temporarily they put him into the body of a old husky white
multimillionaire who was just murdered until they can find him a better
match. Rock sees himself the same, but others still see him as a
white old man. You can see where that is going...
It's light and entertaining. Not the greatest movie of all time,
but it's fun and worth the rental - particularly if you like Chris
Rock's stand-up because you get it throughout the movie.
Down with Love
(PG-13, 2003) ... Average: 3.5
(Ewan McGregor, Renee Zellweger, Sarah Paulson, Rachel
Dratch, David Hyde Pierce, Tony Randall, Jeri Ryan)
HERE to go to Tony Porco's Movie Reviews Page)
DOWN WITH LOVE: is intended as an homage to the screwball,
double-entendre romantic comedies of the early 60's, and while it's no
substitute for those movies (as many other critics have pointed out), it
does have its own charm. A major reason for this is that the two stars,
Renee Zellweger and Ewan McGregor, end up surprisingly good together, even
if they aren't Doris Day and Rock Hudson (as many critics have also
She is the bestselling author of a Feminine Mystique-style tract (which
gives the movie its title), and he is a roguish reporter determined to
seduce her and prove that she is, in fact, just another woman who needs a
man (which gives the movie what little tension it has).
There's a lot not to like; the plot doesn't stand up to close scrutiny (or
any scrutiny, actually), and the cocktail-jazz soundtrack and humor both
get really stale about halfway through the proceedings. Also, David Hyde
Pierce, playing the reporter's editor and best buddy, plays the exact same
character he plays on Frasier, down to the last tic, making you wonder if
it wouldn't be more entertaining to just watch a rerun of that show. All
that said, the stars are good enough together, and the plot is charming
enough to make me, a romantic comedy fan, overlook its flaws for an
hour-and-a-half or so.
The best aspect of the film is the incredible job that the production
designers and set-people did recreating the look of the early 60's, down
to the (terrific) animated credits at the beginning and the tab collars
(keep an eye out and you'll spot them!)
By the way, the gorgeous Jeri Ryan, who is one of the best of the many
good things about Fox's TV show Boston Public, ends up mostly as eye-candy
here as a stewardess and conquest of the reporter. More importantly, the
casting people got one actual 60's star, who I didn't even think was alive
anymore, to play a small-but-important role. Anyone familiar with
New York City geography will get a good laugh out of the first five
T and the Women (R, 2000) ... Average: 0.5
(Richard Gere, Helen Hunt, Farrah Fawcett, Shelley Long,
Laura Dern, Kate Hudson, Liv Tyler)
This movie rates 0.5 stars because I like looking at Richard Gere.
It would have been a higher rating had he not opened his mouth.
The movie is about a OB/GYN (Gere) who is surrounded by women every waking
minute of his life. His wife is a nut case (played by Farrah Fawcett
-- go figure), one of his daughters is getting married and the other
daughter is trying to find herself. His assistant is in love with
him, every one of his patients demands his undivided attention and he
develops a hankering for the new (female) golf pro. Ooops ... I just
revealed the whole movie.
The office dialogue is annoying -- all the women speak at once so it's a
garbled mess of nonsense. His wife speaks about nothing -- more
garbled nonsense. And poor Dr. T just looks so hapless and pathetic.
You'd think he'd either be used to his surroundings or would have learned
how to tolerate them, but nooooo ... he walks around looking flustered.
My friend Kerry (who, by the way, made me watch this garbage) described
the final scene as "symbolic" -- a word I can only surmise means
"sucks." Without giving away any of the WONDERFUL details
of the movie, suffice to say that I was praying we would see Dr. T trapped
under a house, feet and legs curling up, gasping for the last breath of
life. I'm sure Richard Gere was praying for that, as well.
Do yourself a favor. If you want to see Richard Gere at his finest,
rent, "Primal Fear." If you want to see Richard Gere in a
vehicle not even worthy of Pauly Shore, rent "Dr. T and the
(PG-13, 2002) ... Average: 3.5
(Kevin Costner, Joe Morton, Ron Rifkin, Kathryn Erbe, Linda
I really liked this movie. Bev did not, but I can't really
figure out why. Classic Kevin Costner, classic Kevin Costner
movie. He pretty much plays himself in every movie he's been in, and
this one is no different. Very likeable characters - the usual very
likeable Kevin Costner, very likeable movie with some interesting
twists. Call it, Sixth Sense-lite in the way subtle clue after
subtle clue is laid in front of you - and Costner - in an effort to figure
out what is really going to happen. OK, VERY lite, but any even
remote comparison to Sixth Sense has got to be good, right?
Costner plays a doctor whose wife, also a doctor, is killed in a tragic
accident while helping the Red Cross in Venezuela. He is haunted by
the fact that he can't seem to get closure on her death. Haunted,
both mentally and literally. It seems that his wife is desperately
trying to reach him from the afterlife to tell him something that must be
extremely important - mostly through near-death experiences of his
patients. But what does she want?!
This movie was unique in that it is really a combination supernatural
thriller/love story. There aren't too many of those. What was
a tad odd is that in an effort to contact Costner, the result is often
quite frightening to both Costner and the audience. You would've
thought she'd be a little more...I dunno...Casper the Friendly Ghost about
it. But that doesn't ruin anything, and it certainly does make the
The end was surprising. I definitely didn't see it coming, despite
all of the clues - not unlike Sixth Sense.
I wouldn't say this was one of the greatest movies of the year and there
was a bit of fluff to it, but it was still very good. More than a
worthy rental, particularly if you like scary movies and/or Kevin Costner.
Mona (PG-13, 2000) ... Average: 2.0
(Danny Devito, Bette Midler, Neve
Not worth your time or cash. There were a few funny parts but they
don't make up for the rest of the movie. The one funny but strange thing
in the movie is that everyone drives YUGO'S.
If you have a choice between cleaning the toilet or
seeing this movie - choose the toilet.