Archive for December, 2005


“Elf” may not be a modern classic holiday movie like “The Santa Clause” or “The Grinch That Stole Christmas,” but as my mother said when the doctor yanked me from her loins, “It’s a keeper.” Read the rest of this entry »

Enemy at the Gates

All is fair in love and war, but it’s the romance that really screws up things. Take the new World War II film “Enemy at the Gates.” Here’s a really gripping drama about two professional snipers that gets shot down by a meaningless love story. Read the rest of this entry »

The Fisher King

Brilliant is a word that I don’t use very often. It’s over used, especially if it’s used to describe someone like director Terrence Malick. He’s good, but he’s not brilliant. Every now and then, actors can be brilliant, or at least deliver a brilliant performance. It doesn’t happen very often, but when it does, you instantly know you’re in the company of brilliance. Read the rest of this entry »


Standing pool side in his black Speedos, hair wet and water dripping down his chest, Jesse Bradford (Clockstoppers) looks like another in a long line of post-pubescent Calvin Kline underwear models. He’s as cute as a button, and his character in “Swimfan,” Ben Cronin, is about as smart as one. Read the rest of this entry »

Rush Hour

The buddy movie is alive in well in the form of “Rush Hour,” a thoroughly engaging action-comedy teaming Asian superstar Jackie Chan with American comedian Chris Tucker (“Friday“). It’s a tried and true formula that when it works, works well. The buddy cop comedy has been around for decades. Read the rest of this entry »


I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen the last twenty minutes of “Quartermass and the Pit.” It must be at least two dozen. However, I’ve never seen the entire film from beginning to end. I usually come across it while flipping from channel to channel looking for something to watch. Read the rest of this entry »

Good Will Hunting DVD

Actors are always complaining that there just are not enough good scripts floating around. Instead of complaining, actors Matt Damon (The Rainmaker) and Ben Affleck (Chasing Amy) wrote a screenplay for themselves. “Good Willing Hunting” is the movie they wrote, and as Hollywood’s latest double-hyphenates, are about to set the town on fire. “Good Willing Hunting,” as directed by Gus Van Sant, is a solid, entertaining tale of coming of age tale filled with sharp, smart dialogue. Read the rest of this entry »

Video Calendar



CHARLIE & THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY (Warner Home Video)EDUKATORS (Sony)HAPPY ENDINGS (Lion’s Gate)MADAGASCAR (DreamWorks) Read the rest of this entry »

Fiddler on the Roof

Tradition! That’s what “Fiddler on the Roof” is all about. The Jerry Bock-Sheldon Harnick-Joseph Stein musical made it’s Broadway debut in 1964, and by the time it reached the big screen in 1971, had gone on to become of the most beloved stage musicals of all time. The stage role of Tevye, the Jewish dairyman trying to marry off his five daughters, was originated by Zero Mostel. Read the rest of this entry »


Ah, summertime. Blue skies. Green grass. The sound of birds singing in the trees. The perfect time for a stroll through the park, watching people and dogs pass the lazy, carefree day tossing the Frisbee and playing catch. Oh crap, I just stepped in “Scooby-Doo.” Read the rest of this entry »

From Dusk Till Dawn: The Hangman’s Daughter

“From Dusk Till Dawn,” the slam-bang action-horror from director Robert Rodriguez and writer Quentin Tarantino, is one of my favorite vampire films. The film’s combination of cutthroat action and wicked humor made it much more than just your run-of-the-mill, fangs-for-the-memory film. Read the rest of this entry »

Unfaithful DVD

Does the world really need another thriller about the reverberations of adultery?

In director Adrian Lyne’s “Unfaithful,” we’re asked to believe that content wife and mother Connie Sumner (Diane Lane) would jeopardize her marriage to successful and handsome husband Edward (Richard Gere) for a fling with womanizing book seller Paul (Olivier Martinez). Read the rest of this entry »

Monster In Law

The events that transpire in Monster-in-Law could only happen in the movies. Too bad they didn’t happen in a better movie, or even a mildly engaging movie. No, they had to happen in this loud, abrasive, nails-on-the-chalkboard character comedy so over the top even the actors appear to lose consciousness. Read the rest of this entry »

Supergirl DVD

An act of desperation if ever there was one. Realizing that their “Superman” franchise had run out of gas, producers Alexander and Ilya Salkind turned their attention to the man of steel’s pretty cousin, “Supergirl.” Read the rest of this entry »

Ladder 49

Ladder 49 is competently made, has some decent performances, and occasionally ignites the screen with its pyrotechnic displays. It also plays it safe, which is a big mistake. Packaged and marketed like heroic action figures, Ladder 49 does a good job of putting firemen up on pedestals. It’s not a difficult task. Anyone willing to rush into a dangerous situation deserves our respect and reward. Read the rest of this entry »