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items tagged with L.A. Confidential

Spawn of the Dead: "28 Weeks Later," "The Ex," and "Lucky You"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2007-05-16 08:21:01

28 Weeks Later28 WEEKS LATER

In any given year, I see a lot of horror movies at the cineplex. But I remember one moment from watching the 2002 zombie flick 28 Days Later like it was yesterday: when that drop of infected blood landed on Brendan Gleeson, and the audience didn't just gasp, we practically moaned. It was the most spontaneously empathetic group response I'd ever heard during a fright film - a hundred people simultaneously reacting with "No, not him" anguish - and it underlined what made Danny Boyle's nerve-racking thriller so strong.


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A Lighter Shade of Noir: “The Black Dahlia,” “Gridiron Gang,” “The Last Kiss,” and “The Protector”
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2006-09-20 04:34:58

Aaron Eckhart and Josh Hartnett in The Black DahliaTHE BLACK DAHLIA

The opening sequence of Brian De Palma's L.A. noir The Black Dahlia is so busily choreographed that, at first, you think it has to be some sort of put-on. A melee involving a street full of cops and sailors in downtown Los Angeles circa 1946, the balletic, slow-motion punching and flailing is orchestrated within an inch of its life; nothing about it seems real, but it's so dazzlingly executed that you hardly care. But with Josh Hartnett's ersatz tough-guy narration droning away, it quickly becomes clear that the scene isn't meant to be funny. It isn't comedy that De Palma's going after here but stylization, and as The Black Dahlia progresses, it's obvious that the director doesn't have the cast or screenwriter required to give his baroque touches a context. A few nastily enjoyable moments aside, the film is dour, dull, and confusing, enlivened only by a few zesty supporting portrayals and whatever directorial wit De Palma can bring to it.


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Acting Trumps Presentation, and Here’s the "Proof": Also, "In Her Shoes," "The Greatest Game Ever Played," and "Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2005-10-12 00:00:00

Gwyneth Paltrow and Jake Gyllenhaal in ProofPROOF

Most cinephiles detest filmed versions of plays, with their awkward exposition, stagy dialogue, and functional, assembly-line characters who serve their purpose within the author’s conceit and exit just in time for another character to show up and do the same; oftentimes, you can all but see the proscenium arch hovering overhead.


Read More About Acting Trumps Presentation, And Here’S The "Proof": Also, "In Her Shoes," "The Greatest Game Ever Played," And "Wallace & Gromit: The Curse Of The Were-Rabbit"...


"Matchstick Men" Feels Like a Con: Also, "Once Upon a Time in Mexico," "Owning Mahowny," and "The Order"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2003-09-17 00:00:00

Nicolas Cage and Alison Lohman in Matchstick MenMATCHSTICK MEN

Ostensibly, Ridley Scott’s dramatic comedy Matchstick Men deals with Roy (Nicolas Cage), a professional con artist, connecting with Angela (Alison Lohman), the 14-year-old daughter he never knew he had, and trying to better himself as a father figure.


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Newly Arrived Oscar Nominees Unmissable: "Far from Heaven," "The Pianist," "Dark Blue," and "Gods & Generals"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2003-03-05 00:00:00

Julianne Moore and Dennis Haysbert in Far from HeavenFAR FROM HEAVEN and THE PIANIST

While huge movie markets such as New York and L.A. had to content themselves with only one major new release this past weekend – Cradle 2 the Grave, featuring the long-awaited pairing of Jet Li and Tom Arnold – we’re being treated to the area debuts of Far from Heaven and The Pianist, two of 2002’s greatest achievements and the recipients of 11 Oscar nominations between them. Both movies are so good that it’s almost churlish to recommend one over the over – by all means see both – but if pressed, I gotta give the edge to Todd Haynes’ Far from Heaven, which is unlike anything I’ve ever seen before.


Read More About Newly Arrived Oscar Nominees Unmissable: "Far From Heaven," "The Pianist," "Dark Blue," And "Gods & Generals"...





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