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Mon, Jun 25th 2012
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Electronics Books Movies

Movie Reviews

More opinions than you can shake a stick at!

Wow. So many movies -- mostly bad. Can't believe how many poor movies are made. Most of them aren't even worth the rental fees. However, there are a few great ones out there. My goal is to share them with you. There's one KEY ingredient in any movie -- caring about the characters. Without that, it's just a lousy waste of time.

Sort by: Title, Best to Worst, Worst to Best, Most Recently Seen

The Man From Elysian Fields(8)
This was a good one. Good characters and a believable (mostly) story. Why can't there be more movies like this one?

The Ring(6)
Two words: Overrated! Okay, maybe that's one word. So I still have 1 more word. Okay: Mildly scary. Oops. Now I've used 3 words. Point is - the movie wasn't nearly as scary as some claimed it to be. It also had quite a few holes in it. HOWEVER, it was an okay rental. But I didn't lose any sleep after watching it.

Some good stuff there. Funny and witty. They did some nice work on this one. Well worth the rental money...especially when friend's rent it.

First one: Good. Second one: Mediocre. Third one: "Get out of my way usher. I'm leaving this theater!" Okay, the jokes are over. Only a few funny moments left me wondering if there was still time to sneak into another movie. If he makes another one, I'll just have someone else watch it and post their comments here.

To be honest, I really thought this was going to fail. But fortunately, I was quite mistaken. Great action. Interesting story. Interwoven humor. It's an all around fun flick. Catch it on a Saturday morning and it'll start you off to a great day.

Life as a House(8)
Deep and moving. I was glad I saw the movie. Now I want to build a house too. Incidently, I never knew ANY girls like that in high school. Gotta wonder about them Hollywood writers.

Iron Monkey(7)
Fun fun fun. A good action kung fun flick. Good story. Good characters. Just a few lousy extras, but they didn't ruin anything.

Good movie. Simple cartoon. It was funny and the action was enjoyable.

Training Day(8)
Great movie. Violent. Suspenseful. Kept me interested. Quite far fetched, but that's Hollywood.

Rat Race(9)
Hilareous movie. Don't know why it didn't fare better in the box office. Get some friends together and rent this right now. Yes, now. Stop reading and go! NOW! Why are you still reading this?!?

Moulin Rouge(9)
Hit or miss. I haven't spoken with any 'middle of the road' people on this film. Most either love it or hate it. I don't argue with the haters though. I understand why they don't like it. But I thought it was a good movie myself. And these are MY reviews.

Comedy. I laughed a lot. So I liked it. Nice plot twists too. Give it a shot.

State and Main(9)
Yeah. It's funny. Nothing beats the scene of them having to rename the big movie. Simple procedure...insert tape, begin laughing.

Yeah! Here's something clever and different. Make sure you're wide awake though. It takes concentration. I give it a 9 for its originality.

Reign of Fire(7)
When you can convincingly have dragons battling artillery and helicopters, you've arrived at special effects nirvana. The characters were mostly interesting, though it's mainly an action movie. Sure, the girl you're with will be okay with it at the video store, but weeks later, you'll hear her complain, "We had to see a lame action movie."

Catch Me If You Can(8)
Catch Me If You Can. Great movie. I was attentive from start to finish. Good acting and interesting characters made this a fine flick.

Oh, how miserable I was. I wanted out of the theatre desperately. And that was only five minutes into the movie. It was nothing more than a long boring road trip gone bad. Don't rent it. Don't watch it even if your neighbor rents it. Don't take it off the shelf at the video store and smash it to pieces; because that's illegal. Yes, tempting, but illegal.

We Were Soldiers(1)
Cliche for the sake of being cliche. The war movies 'were' getting better for a while there. Not any more. This movie had me bored out of my gourd. I doubt I've even enjoy it as a rental. My guess is it was written by the Iowa State Junior High Writing Contest 3rd Runner Up. Fine actors caught in a bad script.

Hart's War(1)
See "We Were Soldiers"

American Pie II(1)
Sophomoric. Tagline: If we're REALLY gross, the audience won't care about a story. I guess it's primarily for teenage kids. But I'm also figuring I'd even be bored at that age. The first one at least had originality. This one had...well, nothing.

Should have stopped evolving at the drawing board. Boring.

Tomb Raider(2)
Has a PC-video-game-turned-movie EVER been good? What's next? Everquest? This one should have been stopped.

Lord of the Rings(4)
I wanted to like it! I really did! But it was just too long and boring. The battles were well done and very clever. I think the story just needs to stay in book form. There I can understand everything and read in smaller segments. Three hours was too long not to use the bathroom. And I hated to miss five minutes since I was already lost as to what was going on.

Red Dragon(5)
Well I did read the book so the movie didn't have much of a chance. But it was okay and followed the book rather closely after the opening. It was worth renting though.

Ocean's 11(5)
Had I not paid full price (for two people even), I may have liked this movie better. It fell short. It relied too much on the star appeal of the big name actors. I did like the plot twists though.

I came close to considering this movie a winner. It came off as being, well, too artificial. I'm glad I rented it though. The effects were fun to watch. And it was entertaining. It was worth renting.

Captain Corelli's Mandolin(7)
See it just to find out what a mandolin is. Fairly good. Not the best war movie, but something different. It's close to being pretty good. I thought it was worth movie admission (matinee).

Rush Hour 2(5)
Mildly funny. Missing the magic of the first one. A decent rental when the great movies are out of stock.

Predictable. Some cool effects. Okay to rent it.

Book wasn't great. But it was better than the movie. Hard to call it a loser though. I didn't mind renting it.

Star Wars II(5)
Attack of the Clones. Well, it was much better than the Phantom Menace. Best thing is the lack of that annoying character. We complained; they listened. That's good public relations.

The Scorpion King(5)
Good effects. It's odd to see how the Conan type movie has changed. It's tamer now. Hardly any blood at all. And no nudity. I guess it's being marketed at younger kids. I applaud their keeping it clean. Though secretly, I find the older medieval ones a little more exciting.

The Mothman Prophesies(7)
Scary at times. That was cool. I liked the movie. Sort of odd. But had an eerie feel to it. A good one to rent late at night with the lights out and the sound up.

About a Boy(6)
Yeah. It was okay. Not super or anything. It did have a few funny moments. The approaching of the married woman at the supermarket had me busting a gut. It was a decent rental.

The Bourne Identity(7)
I enjoyed it. Cool action scenes. Suspenseful at times. I'd even see it again with a friend -- provided they rent it.

Clever and somewhat original. I liked the movie. Though, I wouldn't see it a second time. A few small twists made it a good rental.

Ah, the curse of a blockbuster hit. Everything he does will forever be compared to The Sixth Sense. This one was good though. It was suspenseful at times too and went further out there than many movies are willing to do. It was a good one for the theaters too - which is saying a lot.

City By the Sea(7)
It's a good rental. I found it interesting. A good dramatic piece.

The Four Feathers(5)
Anything English is fun to watch now that I've spent several months in England. The movie was almost good, but fell short in a few areas. There just wasn't enough time to fully develop the characters.

Knockaround Guys(7)
A good action movie. A somewhat surprising ending that I didn't expect in the least.

One Hour Photo(4)
I will admit that I was intoxicated when I saw this movie, but not enough to like it. The shots were often very colorful and well-framed - just like a photograph. But the story was (gotta love this PUN!)...underdeveloped! Ha ha ha! Actually, not underdeveloped, just a little boring.

Road to Perdition(8)
Original to me, this movie had a lot of character. The period was fun to watch and it was suspenseful at times. I liked in the theaters, but renting it is just as good.

Minority Report(9)
Good stuff. I liked the special effects and the story. The moral questions raised were interesting to think about. I highly recommend it.

Not great. Not bad. It's an okay movie. I wouldn't trip over anybody rushing to grab it off the shelves though. But if there's an earthquake at the video store and it literally falls into your lap, then rent it.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets(5)
Her books are far better. The movies are entertaining though. The special effects are fun to watch. I find it all to be like candy. It's great at first, but after a while, I tend to want something with more substance. In other words, I get bored before the movies (or books) are over.

Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers(4)
I guess since I haven't read the books, I don't have much chance at keeping up with things. The characters are completely confusing to me. I saw it at the theater and grew very bored about 3/4 of the way through. I may have to read the books before the final installment. The battles scenes are great though.

The Quiet American(8)
This is a good movie. There were a few quirks in the writing, but not enough to ruin the story. The actors do great jobs and the mood carries well.

The Hours(6)
Overrated, but okay. The characters were interesting to a point. Perhaps the book is better?

Story of 1900(8)
The characters were great and I enjoyed being on an early 20th century ocean liner. I'd happily see it again.

Shanghai Noon(8)
Funny and clever. This comedy had me laughing hard at times. A good comedy refreshingly proves that sex and swearing aren't required for a great flick.

The Royal Tenenbaums(10)
Three times I saw this movie. And three times I laughed. Great characters. Comical story. Rent it now. Rent it later. I did.

I'm very sceptical when it comes to musical gone movie. I also waited many months before seeing Chicago. No special reason; I was just too busy. Finally, I paid the outrageous $9.50 and entered the theater. We skipped on popcorn and snacks this time. No sense in wasting any more money. Where was I? Oh yes, reviewing the movie. I liked it a lot. One one weak actress wasn't enough to ruin the show. The songs and dances really gave this movie its oscar-winning credentials. Someday, I'll even have to see the stage show for comparison.

The Haunting(6)
For me, a scary movie has only one criteria: it has to be scary. This movie was not. Sure, the house quaked and the ghosts ran amok. Loud sounds shreiked from all directions (Dolby digital sound). But the story wasn't particularly interesting or exciting. The scenery was fun thoughtfully done. The acting was fine as well. But I was just never scared. I did get nervous one time during the movie. And I guess that was enough for it to merit a rating of 6.

Grey Zone(8)
It's a depressing look at World War II death camps. However, those are times that should never be forgotten; lest they happen again. That said, I liked the movie. It's tough to follow and completely understand the story at times. Yet, it's worthy of an 8 due to great acting and moving dialogues

The Pianist(8)
I had hoped for 'awesome'. I got 'great'. I enjoyed this movie. Though, for whatever reason, I was expecting something different. Most notable to me was that there weren't very many copies of this movie on the rental shelf. Yet, next to it were numerous copies of a completely aweful movie that merrited horrible reviews. We just don't seem to generate enough demand for good movies. Why is that?

Old School(6)
It had some funny moments. It's a rental for sure. But one worth renting. Very memerable was the wedding gift that keeps getting passed along to others.

Shanghai Nights(5)
What happened? The first one was so funny. This one just fell flat in so many areas. Perhaps my expectations were set too high. It completely forgot about past characters (didn't they both have wives?). I kept expecting to see the Indian lady come back to save the day. She never showed. The fight scenes are comical, but are beginning to wear thin. Rather enjoyable to me was the recreation of 19th century London. It's nice to have an idea of how things might have looked when the sun was actually shining.

Charlie's Angels(5)
Okay, so I paid full price for it. But I went with friends. So I had little choice there. It was a mindless action film. Though, they seem to have targeted it for mindless audiences as well. I don't mind suspending my disbelief, but now I'm expected to expell it completely? I like far-fetched things, but this dabbled with too many impossibilities. If it's a movie like Superman, I can understand. But now we're supposed to believe a tiny little set of plastic wings is going to allow someone to glide off a tall building. I guess the next Tomb Raider is having characters do the same thing. I guess it's the next trend. There were some good parts however. So it's worth renting.

Punch Drunk Love(8)
And now for something completely different. Yeah, this wasn't expected at all. It had Adam Sandler going a whole new direction. The characters were all so neurotic and odd. The people did such crazy things that it frustrated me just watching. And it all worked rather well to build a simple Boy Meets Girl story. Except that the boy and girl had their shares of issues. I liked what the movie did. It showed that no matter how unperfect we are, we can still adapt and even find real love.

Dark Blue(5)
Kurt Russell does a fine job. The other performances just fell flat and seemed unsincere. The story was interesting enough to keep me going. Though in the end, I don't feel any better off having seen this movie. It's a rental, but consider other things first.

The Hot Chick(6)
It was actually rather funny. The premise is an old one, but this movie made it entertaining. Okay, I only gave it a 6. It was good, not great.

About Shmidt(7)
Oddly enough, I liked it. It was slow. The characters were somewhat dull. I'm not sure what the message was, or if there even was one. But I liked the movie. Jack does a great job just being real.

Spirited Away(8)
Overrated. But fortunately, I wasn't aware of how great it was supposed to be until after I saw the movie. So I was able to enjoy it. After watching the DVD extras, I then had to say, "okay, now it wasn't THAT great." Still, I liked the story. I really appreciated the creative freedom the cartoon had. Hopefully, there will be many more just like it...well, with different plots.

Started out great. Finished good. It was full of clever writing and good acting. The ending didn't seem as tight as it could have been. Still, the story was quite interesting and kept me wondering what would happen next.

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