Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Romance’ Category

bonfireBoy I must have really done something to Benn to make me watch this film. I mean sure I asked him to do an essay on the Cinema de Stephen Segal, but he never did it.  And I didn’t make him because that is a hell that no one should have to deal with.  But then makes me watch this film, and when I text him and say that he finally has shown me a Tom Hanks movie worse than Joe Versus the Volcano, he laughs and says, yeah I watched and knew it was bad.  Well then why the hell make me watch it then?  Ok, so you just wait until I find something terrible for you to watch, Mr. Farrell.

Sherman McCoy, played by Tom Hanks (Nothing In Common,) is a Wall Street Bond trader who is also married with a kid.  Sherman also has a mistress Maria Ruskin, played by Melanie Griffith (Working Girl,) accidentally runs over a black teenager in the South Bronx while driving his car while in the car.  This sets off a chain of events that causes his life to unravel under the scrutiny of a minister, a district attorney running for mayor, an assistant district attorney trying to score points with his boss, and a down on his luck reporter, named Peter Fallow, played by Bruce Willis (Sin City,) looking for a story.  As Fallow starts to uncover the facts he begins to realize that Sherman is being railroaded by everyone and looks to help him out.

So to begin with we have to talk about the elephant in the room.  What in God’s name is Melanie Griffith doing in this movie?  Better yet, who the hell cast her to act in this film?  Her Southern accent is absolutely atrocious.  She hasn’t got a great voice to begin with because it seems like to me her regular voice is barely above a whisper.  Then you add an uneven and almost unpracticed sounding accent and every time she is on screen I am hating every second of it.  I know at this point in time she was coming off her Academy Award nomination for Working Girl, but that clearly was an anomaly on a otherwise unspectacular career and even Benn said in his review of Working Girl, click here to read it, she wasn’t all that good.  There is only one reason why, in my eyes, she was cast for this role and it can be seen in this picture here.

bonfiremg

While I was watching Tom Hanks in this film I was thinking of his performance in the movie The Man with the One Red Shoe.  For large parts of the film Hanks was playing this part very stiff and by the look in his eyes he wasn’t enjoying participating in this film.  There was nothing to like about his character in the film.  He is cheating on his wife and he is an arrogant tool.  So it’s hard to feel sorry for him when he discovers that everyone has decided to either betray him or frame him or use his situation for political gain.   And I really want to cheer for him because he is Tom Hanks!  Plus the writing was poor in this film, for many reasons, but one of the big ones is that it fails in showing how Hanks’s character Sherman has become estranged from his parents.  We get one back handed compliment from his wife Judy, played by Kim Cattrall (Crossroads,) about how he isn’t his dad, and we get one lunch at the beginning that shows that his father, played by Donald Moffit (Clear and Present Danger,) and his mother are concerned about him.  So this makes one of the final scenes anti-climatic when Sherman’s dad shows up in his empty apartment to tell him he loves him and supports him.  It would have been great if we had seen that they were angry with each other but that wasn’t the case so the reconciliation seemed unnecessary and pointless other than to feel good about the moment.   I will say that because it was Tom Hanks I was at least a little bit happier, so it did work, but only because I like Tom Hanks.

The other main star in this film, Bruce Willis, is also playing an unlikeable character.  He is a drunk and he writes the article based the lies of the people who have the agenda against Sherman.  So when he suddenly realizes the truth that Maria was the one driving, not Sherman, and he is helping to destroy an innocent man, it seems a little out of character for him and also self-serving.  In fact the whole point of the film is to show how one man can fall but still have everything and how a man can come from nothing and have everything, but still have nothing.  Bruce Willis also played the character of Peter Fallow in the same way he played his character on the TV show Moonlighting with one difference in that unlike the character of David Addison on the TV show, Peter Fallon has no “character” what so ever.  He is just a robotic reporter who is unable to convey emotion.

Like the three main characters, the rest of the cast, save one person, are all horrible people and impossible to cheer for in any capacity.  They are all crooked and corrupt and are just not good people and therefore I don’t care about them.  Now I am guessing that this is the point of the movie, as is I would guess the point of the book that it is based on.  The book was written during the 80’s where all the supposed evil in the country was centered in Wall Street and the people who worked in it.  So why a make a movie where you have to try and make one of these likeable?  I don’t get it.  But I did say there was one character who was likeable and that was the Judge in the Brooklyn court, Judge Leonard White, played by Morgan Freeman (Batman Begins.)  He is the one that is constantly yelling at all those who are corrupted and putting them in order, especially at Sherman’s trial.  He has a great speech about telling everyone to be decent.  Of course to me, the only other actor in this movie that has the credibility that Tom Hanks does would be Morgan Freeman.  He is an amazing actor and he had the only decent character in this movie.

This movie has no real redeeming quality because it has no one that you really want to cheer for as a hero.  Then you throw in the incredibly annoying voice and bad acting ability of Melanie Griffith and you have a recipe for disaster.  For some odd reason I remember the hype surrounding this movie back in 1990 before it came out and then the horrid reviews and box office failure of it.  I didn’t see it because of all that and now that I have seen it part of me wants to see some harm befall Benn Farrell.  It’ll pass because I don’t want it to happen, but making me watch movies like this makes me want to think it.

 

 

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

nothingincommonThis movie to me was a prelude to how great Tom Hanks could be as an actor. This movie is also one of my favorite movies ever because no matter how many times I watch it I get so caught up in the film that I can’t focus on anything else, like write a review.  This film got me on a personal level because of the relationship I had with my father and even more so now that my father is gone.  Despite that I still argue that this is one of Hanks best performances he has had and in my list of Top Five Favorite Tom Hanks films this film is in the Top 5.

David Basner, played by Tom Hanks (The Man with One Red Shoe,) is a single, newly promoted executive in a successful Chicago advertising agency.  In an effort to gain a possible partnership in the agency he is trying bring in a new client, an airline, to the agency.  Before he can get started he gets a phone call from his estranged father Max, played by Jackie Gleason (Smokey and the Bandit,) who tells David that his mom, Lorraine, played by Eva Marie Saint (On the Waterfront,) has left him.  David begins to endure the worst time of his life as he tries to understand what happened to his parents, helping the both, dealing with the new client’s daughter Cheryl Ann, played by Sela Ward (Independence Day: Resurgence,) who is an executive with the new client, and leaning on his friend and ex high school girlfriend Donna, played by Bess Armstrong, (Jaws 3-D,) for support.

To me this is the first movie that Tom Hanks shows his ability to be a great dramatic actor.  In his scenes with Jackie Gleason he does a great job of portraying a low level form of dislike for the man as well as a begrudging love.  He also does a great job in showing his frustration with having to try and be a caring son to his separated parents and not have it affect his work, which it definitely does.  But not only is he able to show his dramatic chops in this film but he is able to make the funny scenes in this comedy drama very funny.  I don’t know if it was writing or improvisation but his quick wit was on display when he is sparing with his fellow employees as well as with the owner of the airline.   Hanks also makes this character very likeable.  I enjoy watching him in every scene and I am cheering for him when he sleeps with the airline stewardess as well as Cheryl Ann.  I also want to see him get back together with Donna as well.  And because I am cheering for him I feel his pain as he struggles with accepting the separation of his parents and especially the difficulty in his relationship with his dad.  I believe that this is easily his best performance in the 1980’s which includes the movie Big and is a great indicator of his future success in the 1990’s and early 2000’s.

The other actor who was amazing in this film, and mind you I think all were great, was Jackie Gleason.  His portrayal of Max was amazing as he showed a man that is in some ways not a likeable man but in many ways a sympathetic man.  To me his character represented the ending of the single income household from the 40’s and 50’s in that the woman stayed home to raise the kids and the men worked.  That kind of man could still love his wife and family but have affairs and justify it.  He also made sure that he worked hard enough and long enough to make sure his family was never wanting for more.  He also was the kind of man who didn’t complain about illness and wasn’t likely to change either.  All of these traits were clashing with the men of the 1980’s who were a little bit more in touch with their feelings.  This dynamic plays out constantly in this movie with Max and David’s relationship.  Max never tells David he loves him, but David knows he does.  The amazing part of Jackie Gleason’s performance is that by this time in his life he was literally dying.  He was suffering from 4 different forms of cancer and was actually retired when director Garry Marshall asked him to come do this film.  He was able to get Gleason to do it because he told him if he didn’t then his last film would have been Smokey and the Bandit 3 and trust me that is not a good thing.

Eva Marie Saint did a nice job as David’s mother.  She had two great scenes when she tells David that she knew his father was cheating on her during their marriage and that everyone knew it and that she was embarrassed to admit it to him.  This was the catalyst for a bad confrontation between David and Max.  The other scene is when Max is in the hospital and she is there to initially check up on him and it devolves into yet another fight about their relationship and what he didn’t do.  The only thing she did that was annoying to me, and its small but it gets me every time I watch this film, is when she has cleaned her old apartment that she shared with Max and stocked it for him before he gets home from the hospital.  She gives David the keys and tells him she is never coming back.  She then turns and walks towards the door and gives both sides of the room a look and then shakes her head and walks out of the room forever.  The head shake is more of a good buy and good riddance shake and it just bothers me.  I get it, I know why she did it, but it still bothers me.

The entire supporting cast was great as well.  Loved Bess Armstrong as Donna Martin and am somewhat surprised that the only other big movie she was ever in was Jaws 3-D.  That is some kind of miscarriage of justice.  Sela Ward was also great as Cheryl Ann Wayne, the 80’s female power broker and a great counter to David’s borderline childish empowerment in the work force. The other main supporting cast that were noticeable were the airline owner Andrew Woolridge, played by Barry Corbin (Wargames,) the owner of the ad agency Charlie Gargis, played by Hector Elizondo (Pretty Woman,) and Roger the director, played by John  Kapelos (The Breakfast Club.)  Both Roger and Charlie play a part in helping David’s relationship with Max although in different ways.  Roger admits to David that he hasn’t spoken to his dad in years right after David talks about the huge fight he had with Max.  But the best part is when David just had blown up at Mr. Woolridge and was fired by Cheryl Wayne from the account and Charlie comes in to see how David is doing.  David has learned that Max has to go into surgery that he may not survive.  Charlie explains to David about his failings with dealing with his own fathers illness and how in the end Charlie’s father didn’t recognize him.  Both of these events pointed David into first saving his relationship with his dad and then staying with him during and after the surgery.  They were great small moments that lead to great big moments.

I can go on and on but its safe to say that I am a big fan of the film.  I am sure my love of the film blinds me from some of the negatives but I don’t care.  For me this film also hits home with the relationship I had with my father both the good and the bad times during my life.  I can say without a doubt that I wish I could have been there in the end but I can also say that I was glad that I had a great relationship with in the end and in that aspect have no regrets.  Which I think is the point of this story as well.

Read Full Post »

pandpWhen I heard that this movie was coming out I kind of wanted to see it but I had the issue that I have never read the book or seen the movie Pride and Prejudice.  I have no clue what the story is about.  I just know it was written by Jane Austin and I have been told that I would like nothing she has written or any movie about any book.  Because of this I didn’t see it in the theater.  So it took a Benn Farrell review challenge for me to crack open this film to see what it’s about.  From what I watched the movie is pretty much what the title says it is, a movie about love in the English class structure in a world full of Zombies.

Elizabeth Bennet, played by Lily James (Cinderella,) is one of five daughters whose family belongs to the Landed Gentry class of England.  However they also live in time when a plague was brought from overseas that caused the dead to rise as Zombies.  So the Bennet sisters have to go through the trials of a class society as some try to marry or avoid being married off and at the same time survive the zombie apocalypse.

The movie is based on a book of the same name in a style called Mash-up novel in that it takes things that are non-fiction and things that are fiction and combine the two.  In this case the Jane Austin novel Pride and Prejudice and the modern Zombie monster character.  This style of writing spawned many other books one of them, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter was also turned into a movie.  In that book it took the real life of American President Abraham Lincoln and turned him into a vampire hunter because a vampire killed his mother, instead of illness, and the Confederacy was actually a society full of vampires who kept slaves for food and wanted to control the country.  I understand this movie because I know a lot about Abraham Lincoln.  Why am I bringing up this movie when I am writing a review about another movie you ask? Well I mention this because unlike the Vampire Hunter movie, I know jack about Jane Austin and her book Pride and Prejudice.  It seems when I was in English class in high school I always managed to miss the classes that forced Jane Austin books on the students.  I was lucky and got to read The Great Gatsby and Of Mice and Men.  So obviously my issue in understanding the movie is that I have no point of reference for Pride and Prejudice so I constantly felt like I was missing something.  I feel that if I was at all familiar with the book, or even the movie(s), I would be able to enjoy the film more.

The best example I have of the feeling I’m missing something is the scene where Mr. Darcy, played by Sam Riley (Maleficent,) proposes marriage to Elizabeth Bennett.  The scene is quite hilarious because Mr. Darcy has no idea that he has offended Elizabeth and so they go back in forth in this exposition of expressing feelings while both of them are engaged in hand to hand combat that they have had to learn to fight zombies.   So I giggled a lot and actually understood what was going on.  But I am sure that scene in the non-zombie movie (book) is obviously completely different. So I think I would have enjoyed the scene even more if I had knowledge of that conversation versus the one in the zombie book.

I will say that I did like how the story almost seamlessly put the two different worlds together in such a way that it seemed believable.  I enjoyed the way they approached the zombies in this film in a somewhat original way in that we discover in the film that as long as the recently turned zombies are fed pigs’ brains and not human brains they are no harmful to humans.  However, once they eat human brains they become the monsters we are used to seeing in films.  It was interesting twist in the film that they hid in the story quite well.  However the one drawback to the story was that the writing of the character Lt. George Wickham, played by Jack Huston (American Hustle,) was always the bad guy in the film.  I assume that he is also the bad guy in Pride and Prejudice so I hope that if that is the case they hid it better in that film than in this film.  From the time on screen he just looked the part of the bad guy.  Huston didn’t do a bad job acting at all, I think it’s just the way his character was written in the movie.

I also like how this film didn’t have any real big name actors or actresses in the film.  The biggest name I read in the credits was Lena Headey (300) who played Lady Catherine de Bourgh.  I have always liked her in everything she has been in and especially in TV’s Game of Thrones, but that because she is topless in it so much.  As for the rest of the actors I thought they all did a good job and hopefully they will get more work.  This is the second film I have seen in 2016 that used a largely unknown cast and I am pleased at that because I believe the film world desperately needs an infusion of young talent.

I enjoyed this film much more then Benn would have hoped for I am sure.  While I didn’t understand the plot surrounding the Pride and Prejudice narrative I did enjoy how it worked zombies into the story.  This goes into the category of fun and entertaining films and we need those every now and then.

Read Full Post »

TrainwreckI was first introduced to Amy Schumer when I watched Charlie Sheen’s roast and she was one of the comics roasting him. I giggled quite a lot at her humor so that was one reason why I wanted to give this movie a shot.  I ended up enjoying the movie quite a lot.

The story is about Amy, played by Amy Schumer (TV Inside Amy Schumer,) who is a reporter for a TMZ like magazine.  She lives her life by drinking and partying and hooking up with any man that happens to be walking by her at the time which is quite a contrast from her younger sister Kim, played by Brie Larson (21 Jump Street,) who is married with a kid.  Her life takes a turn when she is forced to do an article about a sports medicine doctor named Aaron, played by Bill Hader (Forgetting Sarah Marshall,) when she starts to have feelings for him she swore she would never have for a man, love.

Even though no particular movie comes to mind, we have all seen the movie that involves a man who whores it up with as many women as possible, is a partier, and is the envy of single men, and some married women everywhere.  He then meets that woman that changes him and after a few ups and downs and a major breakup, he sees the error of his ways and changes who is, makes a large romantic gesture, and they walk off together happily ever after.  That is this movie except every role is reversed in that the man whore is a woman and the female love interest is a man.  Every conceivable stereotype that is seen in romantic comedies is reversed.

To make it enjoyable, director Jedd Apatow and the screenwriter, who is Schumer, did something quite entertaining in that they used Aaron’s character as a sports doctor to hilarious levels.  We get to see Aaron and NBA basketball star LeBron James, have conversations about Aaron’s feeling for Amy.  This happens to be during a little one on one basketball game between Aaron and LeBron which is hilarious because Aaron is getting abused on the court let they keep going like it’s no big deal.  LeBron also has an intervention to help Aaron investigate the reasons for the breakup which again was funny.  Stuff like this happens throughout the film that makes the gender roll reversals funny and the movie enjoyable.

There is some heart to the film as well.  Amy’s character is influenced by her father Gordon, played by Colin Quinn (A Night at the Roxbury.)   There is a lot of tension between the sisters about their dad because Amy worships him and lives her life like he lived his while Kim finds him unloving and is angry with Amy for living like she does.  Amy’s relationship with Aaron causes friction between her and her dad as he reminds her about the kind of person she is and she is not happy about that.  These relationships built into the story again make the movie enjoyable to watch.

I some how forgot to mention how good the acting was in the film.  Everyone involved were quite entertaining especially Amy Schumer who was nominated for a Golden Globe for her performance as was the movie in the Best Comedy or Musical category.  Hell even LeBron James was humorous as the emotional friend to Aaron.  It was a well acted movie just not original, but that doesn’t matter too much in this case.

The movie won’t surprise you and I am not sure that it will make my DVD collection but you can surely do worse and it will definitely make you laugh for a couple of hours and therefore makes for a good night of movie watching.

Read Full Post »

greenlanternSo here it is…I am a Green Lantern fan. When I was a kid and reading comic books Hal Jordan and Green Lantern was my guy.  As much as I love Batman, Iron Man, and a few lower comic book heroes, Green Lantern was always my guy.  So I was always going to like this movie unless it was a colossal failure on the scale of the film Batman & Robin.  This movie is nowhere near that kind of failure.  I do have some issues with this film, but unlike most of the movie going population of the planet, I did like the film and it sits in my movie collection.

Hal Jordan, played by Ryan Reynolds (Smokin’ Aces,) is a test pilot for Ferris Aircraft when he is recruited by the Green Lantern Corp upon the death of Green Lantern Abin Sur who crash landed on Earth.  Sur’s death is due to a battle against an evil entity known as Parallax that lives and grows off of the fear of other beings.  While Hal is sent to the planet Oa to learn about being a Green Lantern, old childhood friend Hector Hammond, played by Peter Sarsgaard (Jarhead,) is asked to inspect the dead body of Abin Sur and while doing the autopsy become infected with Parallax’s energy that was left over in Abin Sur.  Eventually Hal is forced to fight Hammond a couple of times, one of which not only puts his sort of girlfriend Carol Ferris, played by Blake Lively (The Town,) but summons the entity Parallax to kill off the Lantern who bears the ring of Abin Sur and absorb the people of Earth to become even more powerful and destroy the home world of the Green Lanterns.

So the biggest problem bringing Green Lantern to the big screen and introducing him to a world of people who aren’t familiar with his story, is explaining his personal story.  Unlike Batman where in five minutes you can show that he is the son of a billionaire whose parents are murdered by a thug, or Superman who is an alien from another world who was sent to Earth to live, Green Lantern takes a human and introduces it to a galactic police force comprised of aliens.  It’s hard to explain the basics of the story of Green Lantern in 30 minutes.  It’s going to take time to not only tell the story but set up the relationships between them.  So as the movie tries to show the backstory of the Green Lantern Corps and of Hal Jordan.  Because of this the movie is paced slowly and not as exciting as the Batman movies before it and many of the Marvel Cinematic Universe films.  I just don’t see how it can be helped because it’s a complicated story and not easily understood.

As for the other big issue many people have I am one who also doesn’t have a problem with Ryan Reynolds playing Hal Jordan.  Reynolds does the charismatic, narcissistic, hero with a heart and some demons with a sense of humor well.  It is in his wheel house as an actor.  In Green Lantern he is running around doing what Ryan Reynolds things and it works.

My problems with the rest of the cast vary from looking like they are phoning it in, which describes Blake Lively, to the characters that were written poorly, like Hector Hammond.  I think Sarsgaard did an admiral job of the character but his backstory of being a failure in the eyes of his father, Senator Hammond, played by Tim Robbins (Jacob’s ladder,) considering he is a college professor seems a little heavy handed.  I just wish they would have come up with something better.

I guess the problem with Hector Hammond is that he isn’t Hal Jordan’s greatest enemy but he is a lessor one that is a classic villain but not the best one for a debut film.  And then teaming him up with Parallax which is the equivalent to Batman’s Bane or Superman’s Doomsday, all villains who destroyed their super hero counterparts, really doesn’t help the story.  I am guessing that if the producers of the film knew that this movie wasn’t going to do well at the box office they probably would have scrapped this story and gone with Hal Jordan’s greatest nemesis, Sinestro.  Sinestro, played by Mark Strong (Kingsman: The Secret Service,) does have a part in this film as a member of the Green Lantern Corps, which he was in the comic book lore, and challenges Hal Jordan at every level in the film.  This is all correct in developing the back story for the Green Lantern Corp.  The sequel of this film was surely going to have Sinestro as the enemy but with the failure of this film it never materialized.  This is a shame because I believe that film would have made up for this one’s lack of action for sure, in my opinion.

A lot was made of the special effects of the film and how the movie seemed to spend more on that then on plot development. While I will agree that the plot is weak, we are again talking about an intergalactic alien police force.  Special effects are going to have to be involved and are going to have to be heavy, it’s unavoidable.

That’s about all I have on the film.  I was disappointed that the producers cancelled the sequel but I am also guessing it had to do with the new direction Warner Brothers and DC wanted to take the DC universe on which is on a parallel course to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  Green Lantern would not have been a good start to it and I believe it’s the last DC comic book movie made that has no ties to the future films that started with Man of Steel.  As a fan of Green Lantern I will have to wait until Justice League to see if he makes an appearance in it and if it doesn’t I have to wait until 2020 for the Green Lantern Corps to be released.  Hopefully it will honor the lore of the character and make the movie going public happy.

Read Full Post »

I love comedies, but I hate when movies make the audience member feel embarrassed as a means of laughter. I know the tag line of the movie was along the lines of “you think your parents are embarrassing,” but it still makes me feel uncomfortable.  If you also add the contrived ending to the movie with the stereo typical hippie parents portrayed by Dustin Hoffman and Babs Streisand, it just was uncomfortable and at times painful.  However, if you love Meet the Parents, which I did not, or if you like embarrassment as a form of amusement, then you will like Meet the Fockers.

The movie basically picks up where we left off after Meet the Parents, Gaylord Focker, played by Ben Stiller (Dodgeball, Starsky & Hutch,) and his fiancé Pam, played by Teri Polo (Meet the Parents, Domestic Disturbance) are taking her parents to meet Gaylord’s parents Bernie and Roz Focker, played by Dustin Hoffman (I Heart Huckabees, Finding Neverland,) and in her first role in 8 years Barbara Streisand (The Mirror has two Faces, The Prince of Tides.)  So we have the uptight military family in the Byrnes, (Pam’s Family) Jack and Dina played by Robert De Niro (Godsend, Analyze That) and Blythe Danner (Meet the Parents, Forces of Nature) and the hippie parents of Gaylord with the kids stuck in the middle, wow how original.

I enjoyed Ben Stiller the most in this movie even though it wasn’t a stretch.  Everybody else was almost typecast for the part, especially Barbara who is a hippie sex therapist in the movie.  Jay Roach who directed this movie, who also directed Austin Powers, basically phoned this one in.  The script was boring and unoriginal but did have a few sight gags that Stiller delivered on that provided a few laughs.

Overall, this movie wasn’t that good and there are better things out there, it’s a simple as that.

 

Read Full Post »

manoftheyearFinally, after months of the unfunny comedy, we have a movie that makes me laugh. Of Course, it is none other than Robin Williams who is causing all of the laughter.  He re-teams with director Barry Levinson and tries to deliver another Good Morning Vietnam.  However, while the comedy is there, the story isn’t and we are given the movie Toys instead.

Tom Dobbs, played by Robin Williams (Happy Feet,) is a late night TV talk show who is convinced to run for President of the United States by the fans and the Internet up roar that is clamoring for something different than a Republican or a Democrat and the polarization of the country.  Eleanor Green, played by Laura Linney (The Exorcism of Emily Rose,) is a computer programmer at Delacor, which is a computer company that received the sole contract from the United States government to computerize the national vote.  Eleanor notices that there is a glitch in the system that causes Dobbs to win the Presidency.  When she tries to report it to the owner, the company lawyer, Alan Stewart, played by Jeff Goldblum (Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou,) tells her to ignore or it or bad things will happen.  Convinced that she will not ignore it, Stewart sends a bad man after Eleanor and drugs her up so bad that she has an episode at work and is fired.  Convinced that she has to tell someone, she decides to go to Washington DC to hunt down Dobbs and tell him what happened.

This movie was very close to being very good.  It had some great character performances and Robin Williams was great, but the story just kills this movie.  The reason is that EVERYTHING is way too easy.  The election result is too easy, the computer glitch is too easy, Eleanor find Dobbs is too easy, fixing the glitch was too easy, etc., etc.  There was no conflict to the conflict of the story.  It baseball terms, it was a 3-2 pitch and the batter hits a home run every time.  The suspense is built but, after the fifth homerun, the game is boring, so is the movie.

However, the bright spot is that Levinson basically allowed Robin Williams to improve the comedy scenes and big surprise, it was awesome.  Jeff Goldblum’s scene with Linney was also wonderful, as was Christopher Walken (Man On Fire) and Lewis Black (Accepted,) who were a part of Dobbs team.  I particularly like Christopher Walken, who played Dobbs manager Jack Menken.  It seemed to be a perfect part for him and he is a great actor anyway, so it was easy for him.

I thought Laura Linney was adequate but she seemed to force her sickness in the lunch room at work and her paranoia throughout the entire movie.  She wasn’t horrible but I thought she could have done better.

The biggest surprise for me was that Levinson and Williams have teamed together to bring us Good Morning Vietnam and this seemed like it could have been another great film.  But unlike that movie, Levinson wrote this script and while he has had success in writing, like the movie Sleepers, and ..And Justice For All, his recent resume has given us the above mentioned Toys, Jimmy Hollywood, and Liberty Heights.  Like I said earlier, the story’s conflict is solved too easily and while I think the story is good, it could have been a whole lot better.

This movie is worth seeing for Robin Williams alone.  The character performances are great and it is a good, simple movie.  However, since I kind of had Oscar hopes for the movie, the movie is a swing and a miss.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »