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items tagged with science fiction movies

Holding Out for a Hero: "Watchmen"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2009-03-08 22:19:25

Billy Crudup in Watchmen

WATCHMEN

In writer Alan Moore's and illustrator Dave Gibbons' graphic novel Watchmen, there's a sequence in which two of its costumed heroes, Silk Spectre II and Nite Owl II, break a third - the masked paranoid Rorschach - out of prison. And near the end of the intensely violent rescue, Rorschach delays their escape with a quick trip to the men's room.


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When Worlds Collide: "The Day the Earth Stood Still," "Nothing Like the Holidays," and "Delgo"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2008-12-17 08:19:14

This past Friday, larger movie markets saw the debuts of John Patrick Shanley's Doubt, Clint Eastwood's Gran Torino, and Steven Soderbergh's Argentinia epic Che.

Our market, meanwhile, only got The Day the Earth Stood Still, Nothing Like the Holidays, and Delgo.

Sigh. Let's dive in, then.

 


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Multi(plex)-Tasking: "National Treasure: Book of Secrets," "The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep," "P.S. I Love You," "Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story," and "AVPR: Aliens vs. Predator - Requiem"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2008-01-02 08:22:22

Nicolas Cage and Diane Kruger in National Treasure: Book of SecretsNATIONAL TREASURE: BOOK OF SECRETS

National Treasure: Book of Secrets, the follow-up to 2004's globe-trotting-archaeologist adventure, could generously be termed "perfunctory"; it gives (family) audiences exactly the formulaic, Indiana Jones-lite action, romance, and humor they adored in the original. It could also, less generously, be described as "crummy," as returning director Jon Turteltaub ensures that every remedially staged sequence has the same bland, going-through-the-motions tone as the one that came before. (At least its predecessor provided a few jokes.)


Read More About Multi(Plex)-Tasking: "National Treasure: Book Of Secrets," "The Water Horse: Legend Of The Deep," "P.S. I Love You," "Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story," And "AVPR: Aliens Vs. Predator - Requiem"...


Survivor: Manhattan - "I Am Legend" and "Alvin & the Chipmunks"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2007-12-19 08:22:07

Will Smith in I Am LegendI AM LEGEND

In Francis Lawrence's sci-fi/thriller I Am Legend, the images of a desolated Manhattan island are so extraordinarily rendered, and Will Smith is such an appealing one-man-show, that it's heartbreaking - and more than a little annoying - that the movie itself isn't better than it is. Based on Richard Matheson's novel, the film concerns a virus that has (seemingly) annihilated the entire human race save for Smith and a pack of predatory, zombie-like humanoids, and it presents a weird dichotomy; everything about the digitally-enhanced locale, and much of Smith's performance, feels absolutely real, and nothing else feels nearly real enough. It's B-grade comic-book material severely outclassed by its visuals and leading man.


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Mike's Online-Only Movie Reviews - 2007
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2007-10-30 00:41:02

Eduardo Verastegui and Tammy Blanchard in BellaBella (PG-13) - Alejandro Monteverde's drama, which concerns the friendship between a chef and a newly pregnant, newly unemployed waitress, received the People's Choice Award at the 2006 Toronto Film Festival. Um... who are these "people," exactly? Space people? Because I can see how Bella might be confused with a great movie if you didn't understand a word of human conversation. Even then, of course, you might still be put off by the film's bizarre editing (with flash-forwards routinely, meaninglessly interrupting scenes-in-progress) and lackluster photography; Montevrede shows more interest in food than in his stars. And then there's that baffling ending, which seems to set the film up for a sequel - one that fills in that massive "Huh?!?" of a climactic plot hole. But it's still the mawkish, maudlin screenplay that does it in; Eduardo Verástegui (looking uncannily like Jim Caviezel as Christ) and Tammy Blanchard (as ever, looking uncannily like Judy Garland) are stuck with unplayable dialogue and baldly written characters, and the movie shamelessly plies on the merely-functional supporting stereotypes. The movie is pro-life and pro-family with a vengeance, which might account for its (limited) popular success. I just wish it were also a little pro-brain, and a lot anti-cliché.


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