Month: April 2008

Return of the "King"?

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Peter Jackson, director of the Lord of the Rings films, is returning to the next Rings film, only, not as director. The next film, The Hobbit, is the prequel to The Lord of the Rings and was the first of the series that J. R. R. Tolkein. The book will be split into two films, which will be executive produced by Jackson. The films will be directed by Guilmermo del Torro, who has directed by Pan’s Labyrinth and Hellboy. The film is slated for release in 2011.

The Music Man: Capsule Review for "Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story" DVD

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Walk Hard is a biopic of fictional rock legend, Dewey Cox (John C. Reilly). It takes you through his life, from women and drugs to his early childhood trauma to more drugs. The film plays like your average spoof, though there are nice variations on other biopics, from Walk the Line to I’m Not There. But a lot of the jokes tend to fall flat. Cox goes through many, many women, and takes many, many drugs. However, the best part of the film is when Cox talks with the Beatles. Jenna Fischer, from TV’s The Office, plays Cox’s second wife, Darlene Madison, and she does it quite well. Her one and only song, “Let’s Duet”, was actually performed by another person, Angela Correa. The film was produced by Judd Apatow. However, there are cool cameos by Jewel, Jackson Browne, Lyle Lovett, and the Temptations. The special features include featurettes on the music and the making of the film, a stupid commercial for sausages, full song performances, and song demos.
Film: C+
Special Features: C-
Overall: C

An Inconvinient Truth: Review for "Dr. Seuss’s Horton Hears a Who"

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Horton Hears a Who, the newest animated Seuss adaptation, stars Horton, a lovable, somewhat affable elephant, voiced by Jim Carry. He thinks he hears a tiny voice, but no one believes him. He protects this little spec, where he heard the voice, on a clover. It turns out that all of Whoville lives on this piece of dust, though not even the Whos realise this. The Mayor, voiced by Steve Carell, is a “boob”, according to his council colleagues. He has ninety-six daughters and one son, who dresses in dark gray, and channels today’s depressed misfit teens. The Mayor, who is part of a long line of “greats”, keeps trying to force his son, Jojo, into being the future mayor. But the Mayor realises that his village has very odd happenings every so often. He then realises, with the help of Horton, that if someone doesn’t get the spec to somewhere safe, the Whos will be in great danger. Among the villains trying to stop the rescue of the spec is Kangaroo, who is brilliantly played by Carol Burnett. She is the “President of the Jungle of Nool”. Her actions make her seem like the annoying woman in suburbia who yells at you for having 2 1/4 inches grass blades, when they are supposed to be 2 inches. The end of the film seems a little sluggish, though enjoyable. The speech that both Kangaroo and Horton make seem like versions of a global warming speech. The narrator supplies the verses from the story, which is marginally accurate. I really enjoyed each line and rhyme, I recommend this film if you want a good time!
Grade: A-

Cutthroat Competition: Review for "Sweeney Todd" 2-Disc DVD

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Sweeney sure does “polish ’em off” inn this new 2-Disc Collector’s Edition DVD. The movie is of the utmost imaginative. Benjamin Barker (Johnny Depp) is a sweet, meaningful barber in love with his wife, Lucy (Laura Michelle Kelley). However, a corrupt judge (Alan Rickman) covets Barker’s wife and sends the young barber to jail on false charges. He comes back, vengeful, only to find that his wife killed herself and his daughter, Johanna, is the ward of Judge Turpin. The film is dark, but funny in some parts. The black comedy that was in the stage musical is still there. Tim Burtin goes a little haywire with the blood, but it shouldn’t be a problem for most. This tale is not supposed to be real. It’s not supposed to take place in a real London. The London that Todd slashes in is surreal. Not to mention the slashes. It’s not the gruesome and graphic slash you might find in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, but it is done in a balletic motion, very much choreographed to the song “Johanna”. It’s not the way Freddy Krueger might do it, but any way you slice it, it’s entertaining. During these killings, he is lamenting the death of his wife and the loss of his daughter. It’s a great film. The special features include an interesting documentary on the collaboration of Helena Bonham Carter, Johnnyy Depp, and Tim Burtin. My favorite featurette is Sweeney is Alive: The Real Demon Barber, which chronicles the original tale of the barber, from his first appearance in The String of Pearlsto his latest venture on the big screen. Other features include a Making Blood featurette, costume design, and more.
Film: A-
Extras: B+
Overall: A-

It’s Just Buzz: Review for "Bee Movie"

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I’m very sorry to say this, all you Seinfeldfans, but Jerry Seinfelds voice is boring. And it is this which caused me to dislike the film Bee Movie. Okay, fine, I didn’t dislike it, I just thought it could be better. Barry Benson (Seinfeld) is a happy bee getting to get a job in his enormous hive. He is shocked to find out that when you take a job, you keep it for the rest of your lie, with no days off. He decides o go out into the world to find new things. He then meets Renee Zellweger’s waxy looking character, Vanessa, a happy-go-lucky florist and defender of all God’s creatures. Barry becomes smitten with her and they embark on the most awkward “relationship” ever. When he sees that Ray Liotta has his own honey company, Barry sues the “human race” for stealing their honey. What follows are several puns and guest witnesses (including Sting, being interrogated by a bee on the use of his stage name). It is an odd premise for a film which seems too self conscious, as if it’s trying to make as many corny puns as possible while maintaining a script. The hypocritical part, in which Barry wins the case and the bees do nothing, thus making the flowers in the world wilt and die, is rather stupid. It seems the whole film was wasted on the case against the humans, while only in the last few minutes, Barry realises his folly. The film is cute enough, but the constant use of “b” and “bee” is irksome to the max.

Grade: (you guessed it) B