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items tagged with David Fincher

The Loons! The Loons!: “Shutter Island”
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2010-02-22 14:46:00

Shutter IslandSHUTTER ISLAND

Shutter Island, Martin Scorsese's operatically paranoid adaptation of Dennis Lehane's 2003 suspense thriller, is easily the best movie of 2010 thus far, so it seems a bit churlish to wish that was higher praise. Don't get me wrong: Even running a wildly overlong 138 minutes, the film is mostly terrific, and one of the very rare works of its kind in which your interest actually increases during the final reels. Yet given Scorsese's glorious technical acumen and the efforts of a ridiculously gifted cast, I still left the cineplex feeling that it just missed greatness, and not even greatness along the lines of GoodFellas or The Departed - more like the genre excellence of Scorsese's 1991 remake of Cape Fear. Shutter Island is a strong, worthy offering, yet as far as this year's releases go, it's only a few degrees more satisfying than Youth in Revolt or Daybreakers. But hey, it's early - I'll happily take it.


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Disappointment Big Really A: "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2009-01-07 16:41:29

Taraji P. Henson and Brad Pitt in The Curious Case of Benjamin ButtonTHE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON

Visually arresting and wildly ambitious, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is a tough film to dislike. But I'm giving it a shot anyway, because while director David Fincher's 165-minute opus is spectacular in lots of small ways, it's frustrating and fundamentally unsatisfying in much, much bigger ones. Given several days to reflect on the experience, I no longer hate the movie the way I initially did, yet I remain convinced that what could have, and should have, been a magical, lyrical piece of work is instead a graceless, obvious, and frequently maddening one.


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Mike’s Online-Only Movie Reviews - 2008
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2008-05-01 11:06:16

The AlpsThe Alps (not rated) - The people have chosen, and the people chose good. Last fall's winner of the Putnam Museum's "Everyone's a Critic" series - which follows climber John Harlin's attempts to scale the north face of the Eiger mountain, where his father perished in 1966 - is such a breathtaking spectacle that watching it makes you a little dizzy; not from the Eiger's treacherous inclines and precipitous drops, which are (enjoyably) vertigo-inducing enough, but from the dazzling visual rush provided by director Steve Judson and his remarkable team of camera operators. Judson re-creates Harlin's ascent with jaw-dropping skill - you'll fight the urge to blurt out "How on earth did they film that?!" repeatedly during The Alps' 45-minute running length - and he and his crew photograph the Swiss mountain ranges with crystalline perfection; I'm not sure any movie has ever looked better in IMAX format. When the film turns to matters of geology and the historic make-up of the mountains, things get a little stodgy, but you're quickly returned to the awe-inspiring vistas, an unexpectedly touching human element courtesy of Harlin and his understandably worried wife and daughter, and, believe it or not, a series of marvelously employed Queen tunes that - in this format, at least - suggest what the elevator ride to heaven would sound like.


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It Coulda Been Worse: "Rambo" and "Meet the Spartans"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2008-01-30 08:23:21

Sylvester Stallone in RamboRAMBO and MEET THE SPARTANS

In recent articles, I've mentioned how thoroughly I'd been looking forward to There Will Be Blood, and some might wonder whether my anticipation had me predestined to love the film, regardless of what was actually on-screen. I'd like to think not, but it's hard to deny that expectations do play an enormous part in one's enjoyment - or lack thereof - of any movie.


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Go Figure: "Blades of Glory," "TMNT," and "Meet the Robinsons"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2007-04-04 08:15:34

Jon Heder and Will Ferrell in Blades of GloryBLADES OF GLORY

It's goofy, it's obvious, and several of its inspirations are only borderline successful, but with the exception of David Fincher's Zodiac, the figure-skating comedy Blades of Glory is the most thoroughly enjoyable movie I've yet seen in 2007. It's also, quite possibly, the best, most unexpectedly clever work of its type since The 40-Year-Old Virgin. How do I even begin to describe how surprising this is?


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