Saturday, February 28, 2009

Movie: Corpse Bride

Another nifty over-the-top physical animation by Tim Burton et al, following the feel of The Nightmare Before Christmas without being a sequel. Pretty good if you like that kind of thing.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Movie: Pitch Black

Over-the-top yet uber-cool bad-ass guy movie. Ok, so it’s about escaping a crash-landing on a planet that rarely sees night, which of course our heros & anti-heros arrive just in time for, only to watch the crew picked off by light-fearing hungry alien beasts.

Movie: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

TV adaptations of stories rarely live up to the depth & edge we hope for. Too much time building up the lanky, irritating character of Ichabod Crane, too much time on the obligatory and non-canonical love triangle, and far too little time on the encounter with the real-after-all Headless Horseman.

Movie: Resident Evil

Mila Jojovich killing zombies. ‘nuff said. Don’t expect more. Get the popcorn, guys.

Movie: The Fall of the House of Usher

A great movie – insofar as the silent-movie era goes. Unlikely to interest modern generations save for historical value. It was the best of its time, portraying depth despite technical & artistic limitations; we've moved on to another millenium now.

Movie: The Magical Legend of the Leprechauns

A full-length young children’s movie, with just enough grown-up material thrown in to keep Mom & Dad interested. The two plot lines hardly intersect. Good for your 3-year-old when you have to watch too.

Movie: Sweeney Todd

High comic musical about cannibalism. Pulls you past the sheer gore into grand humor, then smacks you over the head with the reality that wanton murder isn’t funny. Incredibly gory.

Movie: Princess of Thieves

OK tale of Robin Hood’s teen daughter. Made for your teen daughter.

Movie: Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

Same actors, same directors & producers, bigger budget, shouldn’t have bothered. Kinda betrayed the original with over-the-top here-we-go-again action-for-action's-sake kitch. On the documentary track, Spielberg & Lucas comment that an “Indy vs. aliens” story would just be wrong – and they were right.

Movie: Return to Me

A touching tale of love lost, love found, and the painful connection therebetween. His wife dies, and his new girlfriend ends up with – literally – her heart. How he discovers & copes with this is tactfully done. Yours truly saw it a little too soon after open-heart surgery, and found other things to do in the kitchen during some scenes.

Movie: Cube 2: Hypercube

Over-talky under-informed mutation of its solid (and brutal) predecessor. Several seemingly unrelated people cope – and eventually don’t – with suddenly finding themselves in a four-dimensional maze. Unfortunately, the scriptwriter had a weak grasp of what multi-dimensional space would actually behave like, and we are subject to lots of non-sequitor bizarreness. The ending is needlessly nasty.

Movie: Jane Eyre

Grand portrayal of the classic story. Well done if you like Jane Austin / Emily Bronte sort of things.

Movie: The Count of Monte Cristo

A really good swashbuckling tale of righting wrongs.

Movie: Eragon

Entertaining adventure about a boy and his dragon vs. hordes of evil minions. First of a trilogy. Read the book instead.

Movie: Atlantis: The Lost Empire

Slightly more grown-up Disney fare, recounting the survival and rediscovery of Atlantis. Nicely done if you can follow the somewhat hyperactive pacing, and can deal with the new-ageism.

Movie: The Spiderwick Chronicles

Engaging tale of the fantasy world that lives just outside our view, and what happens when you start meddling with it. Cute, for older kids.