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items tagged with Thrillers

"Hannibal" Stays True to Trash: Also, "Left Behind: The Movie"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2001-02-14 00:00:00

Anthony Hopkins and Julianne Moore in HannibalHANNIBAL

About halfway through Hannibal, the long-awaited sequel to The Silence of the Lambs, our good Dr. Lecter (Anthony Hopkins) is in mid-vivisection of his latest prey when the victim’s cell phone rings. On the other end is FBI agent Clarice Starling (Julianne Moore), who has called to give the soon-to-be-deceased warning about Lecter’s grislier instincts. And then, with a thrilling, inevitable perfection, Hannibal picks up the phone and says with his patented, seductive purr, “Hello, Clarice.” It ranks with one of the all-time-great moments in sequel history – the first reunion of these indelible characters in 10 years – and it produced an audibly electric sensation in the audience, where everyone simultaneously released a deep-throated chortle mixed with a shudder. It might be worth sitting through the film, at least in a packed movie house, just to get to that moment. But be warned: It’ll probably be the only time during the movie when you’ll have that feeling.


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It Must Be January: Collapsing Drama ("The Pledge"), Clichéd Gothic ("The Gift"), and Tired Teen Farce ("Sugar & Spice")
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2001-01-31 00:00:00

Helen Mirren and Jack Nicholson in The PledgeTHE PLEDGE

Sean Penn is one of the few dependably downbeat figures in American film, and those who like their dramas moody, atmospheric, and richly detailed will get some initial pleasure with The Pledge, Mr. Penn’s third directorial outing.


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No Rescue from These Flawed Films: "Proof of Life" and "Vertical Limit"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2000-12-14 00:00:00

Meg Ryan and Russell Crowe in Proof of LifePROOF OF LIFE

Proof of Life, the kidnapping drama by director Taylor Hackford, stars David Morse as Peter Bowman, an American engineer living near the Andes who gets abducted by a group of Latin American revolutionaries convinced that Bowman’s dam-building project is an insidious political maneuver.


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"Unbreakable" Fails to Build on Promise -- or Premise
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2000-11-29 00:00:00

Samuel L. Jackson in UnbreakableUNBREAKABLE

You gotta give M. Night Shymalan credit: The man gives great preview. Though it’s impossible to determine just how much of a hand he had in creating the theatrical trailer for his new thriller Unbreakable, by the time the words “from the writer/director of The Sixth Sense” hit the screen, they’re completely superfluous; a mere 30 seconds in, you know it couldn’t possibly be the work of anyone else.


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In-Laws, Breaking Laws: "Meet the Parents" and "Get Carter"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2000-10-11 00:00:00

Robert De Niro and Ben Stiller in Meet the ParentsMEET THE PARENTS

I’m not sure that any movie genre is harder to critique than the Sitcom Disguised as Feature Film. You know the sort: a comedy, usually with faux-dramatic undertones, filled with likable actors playing likable people (even the antagonists are more pesky than dangerous), where the characters’ dilemmas are sorted out neatly in under two hours, and with no serious harm coming to any of them in the end. The dialogue is moderately witty, the physical gags are predictable but amusing, the lighting is overly bright, and the score is bouncy, with moments of sap when the characters show their “souls.” What’s to discuss? You know going in what to expect, and when the film in question is pulled off well, as Jay Roach’s Meet the Parents is, you leave feeling serene and comfortable.


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