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items tagged with Ben Foster

Moral Minority: "3:10 to Yuma" and "The Brothers Solomon"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2007-09-12 08:28:57

Christian Bale in 3:10 to Yuma3:10 TO YUMA

James Mangold's dramatic Western 3:10 to Yuma, the remake of a Glenn Ford oater from a half-century ago, is a tough, effective, frequently powerful piece of work. Yet despite its authentic period design and supremely intelligent performances, it feels a little lightweight; a few hours after seeing it, you may not remember much about the experience except having had a good time. Especially considering Hollywood output of late, 3:10 to Yuma is hardly a disappointment, but for all of its thematic richness, the movie is rather generic - it's a modern-day action blockbuster in Old West attire. The film is everything except moving, and I have a sneaking suspicion that Mangold desperately wants it to be.


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Out of Step: "Stomp the Yard," "Alpha Dog," and "Curse of the Golden Flower"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2007-01-17 08:14:20

Columbus Short in Stomp the YardSTOMP THE YARD

Before seeing Stomp the Yard, in which a young hip-hop dancer from Los Angeles adjusts to fraternity life at Atlanta's Truth University, I didn't know much about step dancing. But after watching director Sylvain White's inspirational drama, I discovered that there are apparently two distinct types - there's great step dancing and then there's really great step dancing. Though the movie is ostensibly a coming-of-age story wherein our hero, DJ (Columbus Short), finds respect and love during his first year of school, it's really just 8 Mile or Bring It On for the dance world, as warring frats compete to see whose moves out-step whose. (Step dancing - frequently practiced at African-American universities - is a combination of marching and precise choreography, generally accompanied by chants and, in this movie's case, taunts.) Yet it's pretty easy to guess which groups of dancers will be considered the greatest in Stomp the Yard - it's whichever dancers go next.


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Power Grabber: “X-Men: The Last Stand,” “See No Evil,” and “Over the Hedge”
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2006-05-31 05:12:50

Halle Berry, Patrick Stewart, Hugh Jackman, and Ian McKellen in X-Men: The Last StandX-MEN: THE LAST STAND

In his X-Men films of 2000 and 2003, Bryan Singer managed a marvelous blend of gravitas, insouciance, and pure ass-kicking spectacle, and the highest praise I can give X-Men: The Last Stand is that director Brett Ratner, nearly scene for scene, fools you into thinking that Singer helmed this one as well. For a director with an indistinct visual style, there are far worse ways to go than aping the visual style of others, and in the case of The Last Stand, Ratner’s channeling of Singer’s tone seems less unimaginative than duly reverent, and even inspiring; you can feel Ratner working diligently to not louse up Singer’s vision. And he hasn’t. This third, and purportedly final, entry in the mutant-superhero saga is a spectacular entertainment, and if you were worried that Ratner’s participation would guarantee acceptable effects but little in the way of personality, your fears will prove unfounded – it’s a more-than-satisfying wrap-up to the trilogy.


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"The Ring Two" All Wet: Also, "Hostage" and "Aliens of the Deep"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2005-03-23 00:00:00

Naomi Watts in The Ring TwoTHE RING TWO

After sitting through the lifeless horror sequel The Ring Two, the only thing I wanted – besides a major jolt of caffeine to wake me up – was a towel. What is up with all the freakin’ water in this movie? With the exceptions of Ariel in The Little Mermaid and Esther Williams in anything, I can’t think of a leading actress who spends as much screen time soaked as Naomi Watts does in this half-hearted follow-up to 2002’s The Ring.


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Garner’s Pluck Can’t Salvage "13 Going on 30": Also, "The Punisher" and "Connie & Carla"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2004-04-28 00:00:00

Mark Ruffalo and Jennifer Garner in 13 Going on 3013 GOING ON 30

When you watch a body-switching comedy such as Big or Freaky Friday, you know immediately that the movie is going to require a huge suspension of disbelief; these are comedy fantasies, after all, and bitching about logic and realistic plotting is the surest way to kill your good time.


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