Thursday, October 24 2002
Paul Schrader's 'Auto Focus' is, as its title suggests, about self-interest and -obsession.
Friday, October 18 2002
Gore Verbinski's The Ring is relentlessly disquieting and incoherent, and sometimes trite in ways it doesn't need to be.
Deftly rearranges any number of generic conventions, from romantic comedies, musicals, and melodramas with happy endings that can't make sense but seem inevitable and necessary.
Perverse as that sounds, the opportunity really is an actor's dream: role-of-a-lifetime gig and therapeutic session in one fell swoop.
Heaven begins with assorted ascents. Written by the late Krzysztof Kieslowski (with Krzysztof Piesiewicz), and intended as part of a trilogy (Heaven, Hell, and Purgatory), it explores accident and fate, guilt and grief, time and truth.
In Ronny Yu's mostly formulaic Formula 51, Samuel L. Jackson plays Elmo McElroy, a chemical whiz busted for smoking reefer.
Cynical and beautiful. No wonder the boys can't resist her.
Thursday, October 10 2002
Seems stuck in first gear, grinding through a series of very "safe" clichés.
While the book is laced with a youthful sense of wonder concerning life and death, the film is a troubled teenage love story.
Weaving together a vivid assemblage of stock footage, archival documents and talking-head spots, the movie winnows the book down to three of its more damning studies.
Speedy, colorful, and clever, The Transporter establishes Jason Statham as yet another next-generational, hybrid action hero.
What Swept Away calls love, I would call the usual terror and degradation that keeps battered women in dangerous relationships.
Attraction is not comprised of rules, only missed opportunities.
In its preoccupations with history, In Praise of Love suggests if one has no history, one has no basis for thinking about or defining oneself.
Brown Sugar can blur lines between mainstream and margin, mix up the spirits, just as hip-hop -- so-called real hip-hop but also, in its way, brashly commercial hip-hop -- has always done.
Thursday, October 3 2002
America is better off with Miyazaki playing in the malls and the multiplexes than Monsters, Inc.
What is most politically problematic about Red Dragon is how it furthers the relationship between physical disability and psychopathology.
Fits a little too neatly with the recent popularity of media considering grief and death rituals.
Thursday, September 26 2002
Scary as this sounds -- Courtney Love channeling Claire Standish or Andie Walsh -- it might explain a few things about what was going on in Trapped.
I won't tell you how it ends, but note the film's title is 'not' 'New York State of Mind.'"