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items tagged with Roland Emmerich

When the Spielberg Touch Goes Deeply Wrong: "War of the Worlds"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2005-07-06 00:00:00

Tim Robbins, Tom Cruise, and Dakota Fanning in War of the WorldsWAR OF THE WORLDS

My first thought after seeing Steven Spielberg’s War of the Worlds was: Thank God for the aliens, because although the creatures themselves aren’t particularly memorable – a gooey blend of the director’s beatific Close Encounters visitors and H. R. Giger’s 1979 Alien design – their spacecrafts certainly are. The ships’ enormous tripod legs, crushing everything in their paths, exude a wriggling, snakelike suggestiveness, and they have vicious talents besides; these tentacles have the ability to either incinerate their victims instantly – making the human race resemble ants at the mercy of a magnifying glass – or toss them into the spaceships’ grotesque “mouths,” producing more grisly, prolonged executions. (A couple of killings are reminiscent of Steve Buscemi’s demise in Fargo.) To the War of the Worlds aliens, humans are a combination of entertainment, nuisance, and snack, and whenever Spielberg gives us evidence of just how queasily horrifying an attack of this nature might be, his movie is gripping and evocative.

My second thought was: Steven Spielberg has lost his mind.


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Latest Disaster Flick a Moronic Mess: "The Day After Tomorrow," "Raising Helen," and "This Old Cub"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2004-06-09 00:00:00

The Day After TomorrowTHE DAY AFTER TOMORROW

Despite all the hullabaloo about the film re-opening vociferous debate about global warming and its possible effects, Roland Emmerich’s disaster saga The Day After Tomorrow winds up begging exactly one question: Just how much stupidity are mass audiences willing to accept in their summer blockbusters? In any disaster movie, rolling your eyes at the ridiculous onscreen events comes with the territory, but the enjoyable ones temper that reaction with speed and laughs; Emmerich’s cheeky, entertaining Independence Day managed the feat of making the end of the world look like an absolute hoot, and that film, within its sci-fi format, is probably the most sheerly pleasurable disaster flick of the past 20 years.


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Revolutions: "The Patriot" and "Titan A.E."
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2000-07-05 12:00:00

Mel Gibson and Heath Ledger in The PatriotTHE PATRIOT

In this analysis of The Patriot, the Revolutionary War saga starring Mel Gibson, let's begin by addressing that which is mostly blameless - Caleb Deschanel's cinematography. Whether lensing a battle scene, featuring what appear to be thousands of extras in red and blue coats, or a romantic tableau in the moonlight, Mr. Deschanel's work is impeccable; he's one of the best in the business. Ditto the folks behind the set design and costumes, which look marvelously right in their period detail and lend the film more than an air of authenticity.


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