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items tagged with Denzel Washington

Goner, Baby, Goner: "The Lovely Bones," "The Book of Eli," and "Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2010-01-18 12:00:00

Saoirse Ronan in The Lovely BonesTHE LOVELY BONES

The Lovely Bones, director Peter Jackson's long-awaited take on Alice Sebold's beloved novel, is a stupefyingly bad movie, the kind of big-screen debacle that makes you wonder if its entire creative team wasn't suffering through some hideous, collective blockage of talent all throughout filming. You can feel it going wrong in the first minutes, when a car's quick swerve results in an unconvincing and inappropriately comedic loss of a hubcap, but the shock of Jackson's endeavor is that practically nothing in it goes right. Tonally, just about every scene here feels a little bit off, and the rest feel way, way off; it's almost as if Jackson, screenwriting collaborators Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens, and a (usually) wildly gifted cast purposely set out to make the absolute worst Lovely Bones adaptation possible.


Read More About Goner, Baby, Goner: "The Lovely Bones," "The Book Of Eli," And "Bad Lieutenant: Port Of Call New Orleans"...


Subway Training Day: "The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3" and "Imagine That"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2009-06-14 21:51:47

Denzel Washington in The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3THE TAKING OF PELHAM 1 2 3

Set in modern-day New York City, director Tony Scott's action-thriller The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 finds Denzel Washington playing transit-authority executive Walter Garber, a conscientious worker and devoted family man accused of accepting bribes, and consequently - 799 WORDS TO GO!!! - demoted to the rank of dispatcher. One afternoon, while monitoring routine subway transport, Garber notices an irregular stop made by one particular train, and attempts to make radio contact with its motorman. Instead, he makes contact with the train's hijacker, a tattooed psychopath who calls himself Ryder, and - 751 WORDS TO GO!!! - is played by John Travolta. Ordering Garber to secure a ransom of $10 million, Ryder insists that he'll begin shooting passengers if his demands aren't met, and given an hour to procure the money, Garber, a hostage negotiator (John Turturro), and the city's mayor (James Gandolfini) unite to stop the - 700 WORDS TO GO!!! - madman from ... .

Oh, I'm sorry, are those interruptions irritating? Well, you'd better get used to it - gripping and entertaining though it mostly is, Scott's movie oftentimes feels like the cinematic equivalent of that opening paragraph.


Read More About Subway Training Day: "The Taking Of Pelham 1 2 3" And "Imagine That"...


Razor D’etre: "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street," "The Great Debaters," and "Charlie Wilson's War"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2008-01-02 08:26:47

Johnny Depp and Alan Rickman in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet StreetSWEENEY TODD: THE DEMON BARBER OF FLEET STREET

As the title character in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, Johnny Depp gives a controlled, admirable one-note performance in a role that calls for many more notes. This isn't a knock - well, not a huge knock - on his singing of this legendary Stephen Sondheim musical; Depp may not have the vocal power or range to do full justice to Sondheim's and book-writer Hugh Wheeler's masterful creation, but he gives it a good shot, and his morose speak-singing fits director Tim Burton's interpretation of the work. It's the interpretation that's the problem.


Read More About Razor D’Etre: "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street," "The Great Debaters," And "Charlie Wilson's War"...


Human/Nature: "Into the Wild" and "American Gangster"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2007-11-07 16:17:56

Emile Hirsch in Into the WildINTO THE WILD

As a director, Sean Penn has proven more than proficient, but he hasn't exactly demonstrated a lightness of spirit; within his The Indian Runner, The Crossing Guard, and The Pledge, you can pretty much count the number of smiles generated on one hand. I love the gravity that Penn brings to his directing/writing projects, his readiness to explore anguished and vengeful depths, but his seriousness as a filmmaker has its downside, too. Penn's works have been so dour and laden with portent that, as their narratives progress, they begin to feel oppressive and one-dimensional. Like a joke now and again would kill him?


Read More About Human/Nature: "Into The Wild" And "American Gangster"...


Mike's Online-Only Movie Reviews - 2006
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2007-10-30 00:39:47

BarnyardBarnyard (PG) - As it had been at least six or seven hours since I had last seen a computer-animated family movie at the cineplex, I was delighted to catch a screening of Barnyard. Unfortunately, it only took about six or seven hours to all but completely forget the experience; the film is your standard pap about Believing in Yourself and Sticking by Your Friends and such, and it may hopelessly confuse the young kids it's geared towards - I'm sorry, but male cows? With udders? Yet, for what it is, it's agreeable enough and boasts a surprisingly bouncy soundtrack, and the movie displays a welcome nasty streak - when Danny Glover's sage, kindly mule kicked that elderly farmer in the head, knocking him unconscious, I laughed pretty hard. When he did it twice more, I laughed twice as hard.


Read More About Mike's Online-Only Movie Reviews - 2006...





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