I didn't care for the smash hit Rush Hour when it came out in 1998, and so the arrival of Rush Hour 2, needless to say, didn't fill me with excitement. But the prospect of seeing the great John Lone and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon's Zhang Ziyi in supporting roles piqued my interest, and you never know when star Jackie Chan is going to pull off some miraculous stunts, so an open mind seemed appropriate.
I can't imagine who could make sense of the gobbledygook plotting of Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within, yet I can't imagine who will fail to be wowed by the movie's effects; it might be the most visually extraordinary, intellectually banal sci-fi work since 2001: A Space Odyssey. There isn't a moment in the film that isn't amazing to watch, and that includes the moments when the heroine (voiced by Ming-Na) simply walks alone with her hair blowing lightly past her cheeks; Final Fantasy stands as the current standard-bearer in computerized realism.
In The Fast & The Furious, that stolid, basso profundo actor Vin Diesel is forced into a close friendship with the blond, pretty, incredibly bland Paul Walker, so you know immediately that you're in make-believe territory once again.
SWORDFISH, ATLANTIS: THE LOST EMPIRE, and LARA CROFT, TOMB RAIDER
Within a four-day span, I sat through Swordfish, Atlantis: The Lost Empire, and Lara Croft, Tomb Raider, and have become convinced that they're all the same movie. True, one is a sleek action-thriller, one a Disney cartoon, and one inspired by a popular videogame, but consider:
On Stands Now
Email firstname.lastname@example.org to become a Reader pick-up location.
1. Subscribe to free weekly e-mail content updates.
You'll get both the current official narrative challenge and What's Happenin' in the Quad Cities. (Did you know we publish a new Amy Alkon Advice Goddess, Real Astrology, Red Meat cartoon and RCR Crossword every week?)
2. Get 12 monthly issues mailed first class for $48
Get the printed Reader edition mailed to you (or anyone you want) first-class for 12 months for $48. $24 goes to postage and handling, $24 goes to keeping the doors open!