Archive for April, 2000

Films Preview Summer 2000


by John Larsen

They’re coming soon to a theater near you, and the crop of summer films is a case of everything old is new again. Hollywood sticks to the tried and true this summer, relying on familiar themes and tent pole films to entice audiences away from vacations and the beach. Read the rest of this entry »

Films Review May


If one is to believe everything they see, then somewhere in a New York building on the 7½ floor is an office that has a small passageway into the mind of actor John Malkovich. Those who enter the passageway find themselves inside Malkovich for fifteen minutes before they are deposited on the shoulder of the New Jersey turnpike. Read the rest of this entry »


One of the benefits of reviewing video and DVD is the opportunity to catch up with old friends, and make new ones. A lot of smaller films come and go so quickly in theaters that your only chance to discover them is during their ancillary runs. I had such a privilege this week when I saw a little film called “Titanic.” I didn’t hear much about it when it played in theaters. Small films like this usually don’t have a big advertising budget, so they depend on word of mouth. I guess none of my friends heard of it either. I was pleasantly surprised by this minimalist effort.
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Twilight Zone

When people talk about the Golden Age of television, inevitably Rod Serling’s “The Twilight Zone” comes up. Why? Because “The Twilight Zone” defined everything that was right about television during it’s teen years. It was smartly written, sharply directed, convincingly acted, and challenged audiences raised on “I Love Lucy” and “Father Knows Best.” Read the rest of this entry »


Sixty-eight years after its release, director James Whale’s “Frankenstein” still leaves an impact. Ahead of its time both cinematically and thematically, the horror film based on Mary Shelley’s acclaimed novel stands up to the test of time. It’s not only relevant, but remains topical. While scientists figure out how to clone human beings, Dr. Harry Frankenstein (Colin Clive) has been playing God for more than six decades. Considered shocking and daring when it was first released, the film went through some major revisions before reaching American’s hinterlands.
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American Beauty DVD

It wasn’t love at first sight. It was lust. When he first saw her, she was more than the nubile 17 year-old best friend of his daughter. She was a goddess, capable of stopping time so that a moment with her would seem like eternity. Her lips were full and red, her young body tight and firm.
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Star Troopers

War is Hell, especially if you’re fighting intergalactic, brain-draining, fire-breathing arachnids from another planet. There’s a lot of thought and imagination wrapped up in director Paul Verhoeven’s big-screen war movie “Star Troopers,” but little sense and logic. Read the rest of this entry »

Reign of Fire

According to macho military commander Denton Van Zan (Matthew McConaughey), there’s only one way to combat dragons: fire with fire. In a blaze of post-apocalyptic glory, “Reign of Fire” burns up the screen with impressive fire-breathing beasts who quickly turn Earth into a ball of cinder. Read the rest of this entry »

Marlon Brando

Most actors (not movie stars) are fortunate if they’re remembered for one defining moment in their career. Marlon Brando, often christened one of our greatest actors, leaves behind a legacy of defining moments. With Brando’s death last week at the age of 80, history will have a hard time closing the book on an actor who defined cool and took chances. Read the rest of this entry »

Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me

I’ve read several negative reviews of “Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me.” Their main gripe was that the sequel was just more of the same. Really? No kidding? You see, that is the beauty of spoofing films like those in the James Bond series. Most of the Bond films were nothing more than mutant versions of themselves. Bigger budgets. Bigger set pieces. Still, it all boiled down to either a madman or criminal genius holding the world for ransom. Read the rest of this entry »