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items tagged with Dermot Mulroney

Spielberg Takes a Riveting Trip to "Munich": Also, "The Family Stone"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2005-12-28 00:00:00

Eric Bana and Geoffrey Rush in MunichMUNICH

He may be revered – and often reviled – for his sense of childlike wonder, but no Hollywood director shoots scenes of violence with the no-frills grimness of Steven Spielberg. In the helmer’s taut, ambitious Munich – which focuses on Israeli retribution for the murders of nine of their athletes at the 1972 Olympics – Spielberg, as he did in Schindler’s List and Saving Private Ryan, doesn’t distance himself from the carnage on the screen, and doesn’t let us distance ourselves, either. There’s nothing self-consciously “artistic” about the numerous killings we’re shown here; bullets tear through flesh with terrifying force, bombs rip limbs apart, and most of these atrocities are portrayed with an almost shocking matter-of-factness – we recoil from the violence because Spielberg’s presentation of it is so intentionally artless. (The murders in Munich come off as almost painfully realistic.) Yet although Munich is a brutal work, it isn’t brutalizing; Spielberg is too much of a natural showman – and natural entertainer – for that. The film is a riveting and intelligent political thriller, and although the director can’t fully rein in his expectedly sentimental impulses, Munich is probably Spielberg’s strongest directorial accomplishment in more than a decade. It’s a gripping and, for Spielberg especially, refreshingly tough-minded piece of work.


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"Hazzard"-ous to Your Health: "The Dukes of Hazzard," "Sky High," and "Must Love Dogs"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2005-08-10 00:00:00

Johnny Knoxville, Jessica Simpson, and Seann William Scott in The Dukes of HazzardTHE DUKES OF HAZZARD

Since there’s exactly one entertaining scene (preceded by one entertaining cutaway) in the entire film version of The Dukes of Hazzard – one sequence in this shockingly wrong-headed comedy that’s the least bit amusing – let me just save you the $10 and describe it now: For reasons I’ve gone to great lengths to forget, Bo (Seann William Scott) and Luke (Johnny Knoxville) decide to make a pilgrimage to Atlanta, so they hop in the General Lee and high-tail it out of Hazzard County, speeding along their dirt road with “Yee-haaaaw”s a-blazin’. Cut to the freeway in Atlanta, with the General Lee stuck in traffic. (A nice moment.) As they wait, vehicles pass them on both sides; half of the drivers and passengers greet the boys with hearty “Way to go! The South will rise again!” admiration, and the other half sneer at them with “You’re gonna be late for your Klan meeting, rednecks!” revulsion. It’s unclear whether the boys ever realize that the source of the travellers’ contention is the trademark Confederate flag on the General Lee’s roof.


Read More About "Hazzard"-Ous To Your Health: "The Dukes Of Hazzard," "Sky High," And "Must Love Dogs"...


"Fever Pitch" Wins Despite Its Directors: Also, "The Upside of Anger"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2005-04-13 00:00:00

Drew Barrymore and Jimmy Fallon in Fever PitchFEVER PITCH

As long as there’s a Hollywood, there will be a surfeit of romantic comedies, but when was the last time you saw one that was as charming and magical as it pretended to be? Granted, Hitch made oodles of money, but the platonic love between Will Smith and Kevin James was more engaging than either of their characters’ eventual hook-ups, and The Wedding Date, in which Debra Messing and Dermot Mulroney made flirtation look like an act of desperation, was just slightly less romantic than any given episode of Will & Grace.


Read More About "Fever Pitch" Wins Despite Its Directors: Also, "The Upside Of Anger"...


Smith and James Elevate "Hitch" – a Little: Also, "The Wedding Date" and "The Motorcycle Diaries"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2005-02-23 00:00:00

Will Smith and Kevin James in HitchHITCH

As Hollywood romantic comedies go, the Will Smith vehicle Hitch isn’t bad, which, unfortunately, isn’t the same as actually being good. But judging by the film’s sensational box-office intake – not to mention the enthusiastic audience response at the screening I attended (people actually applauded throughout) – no one seems much bothered by the movie’s mediocrity; many viewers prefer a romantic comedy that doesn’t challenge or excite them in the least to films such as Before Sunset and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Sideways, works that understand and explore the nature of romance in ways that feel revelatory.


Read More About Smith And James Elevate "Hitch" – A Little: Also, "The Wedding Date" And "The Motorcycle Diaries"...


For Your Consideration: "Chicago," "About Schmidt," "Catch Me If You Can," "The Wild Thornberrys Movie," and "Pinocchio"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2003-01-08 00:00:00

Catherine Zeta-Jones in ChicagoCHICAGO

Rob Marshall’s film version of the Broadway smash Chicago is so ingeniously staged, so electric, and so welcome to so many of us – The Musical Is Back! – that you might find yourself somewhat heartbroken when you barely remember a thing about the film a day after seeing it.


Read More About For Your Consideration: "Chicago," "About Schmidt," "Catch Me If You Can," "The Wild Thornberrys Movie," And "Pinocchio"...





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