Sunday, January 1 1995
Initially a rather deft and timely exploration of the human consequences of the politics and business of drugs, by the end, 'Our Lady of the Assassins' is content merely to linger on the spectacle and eroticization of casual violence.
In the Glasgow, Scotland harbor, on a cloudy windy morning after a storm, a man's bleeding body floats on a frail piece of wood. For all its artsy beauty, this poster image for Orphans, the writing and directing debut of actor Peter Mullan, is misleading, for it depicts perhaps the only serene moment in the film, one that interrupts the stabbing, shooting, screaming, inclement weather, and other calamities that rage on as four grown-up siblings mourn their mother's early death.
It's a Depression-era musical laid on top of a chain gang escape film, inspired at once by Homer's 'The Odyssey' and Preston Sturges' screwball comedies. But outrageous as it might seem, this ultra-high-concept project suffers from a lack of inspiration.
This is easily O's most cogent insight, which it hits hard and insistently -- the ways that longstanding cultural anxieties about race in the U.S. continue to affect young people's individual and community relationships, just as it affects adults.
... expensive, tacky melodrama.
Any movie that offers proud big bully Andrew Dice Clay as a walking joke, however self-knowing or smug, is starting at a disadvantage. Andrew Dice Clay already made that joke himself, you know, and more than a few years ago.
Who would have guessed it? Living inside inveterate white guy Frank (Bill Murray) is a company of black folks.
By tracing these failures, 'One Day in September' represents compelling links between sports (in general and specifically Olympian) and violence, as a basis for cultural exchange.
Outside Providence begins in a lackluster manner, situating itself in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, in 1974. Tim Dunphy (Shawn Hatosy) just wants to party, but his overbearing, emotionally secretive father, (Alec Baldwin), is not quite hip to the idea of teenage insolence. The generation gap becomes more of a pit, when Tim manages to rear end a parked police car. A slap to the face is the result, as well as a trip to the Cornwall Prep School for Boys. Bummer.
Written, directed, and scored by the young Spanish filmmaker Alejandro Amenabar, 'The Others' explores the evolving relationship between Grace and the servants, especially Mrs. Mills, as this mirrors Grace's changing perception of herself, in the world.
'Nico and Dani' is probably what 'Dawson's Creek' would be if it was directed by Almodovar.
Novocaine's biggest concern seems to be with the act of lying, and Frank is far from the only guilty party.
Roman Polanski and Johnny Depp. The match seems made in heaven, these two notoriously eccentric, fascinating, and difficult geniuses, plying their crafts, inspiring brilliance in one another.
It's revealing that Wesley (Chris Rock) remains locked in an ignoble self-image born of gangster and 'hood movies: eager to emulate and please his mentor, he explains his flamboyant violence by saying, 'I'm just trying to make a statement.'"
From start to finish, the film is suffused with Eddie Murphyness, his elevated sense of himself and his desire to do 'what no one else has done before.'"
'The fame thing,' says fictional megawatt movie star Anna Scott, 'isn't really real.' And she should know, since she's played by real-life megawatt movie star Julia Roberts. The fame thing often does seem unreal to people who don't live it, so it's comforting to hear from Anna (or Julia) that it seems unreal to her as well
Rather than pretending objectivity and maintaining an observational distance on its subjects' legal and environmental problems, 'Nuyorican Dream' takes a stand that is overtly political, emotional, and moral, but never moralistic.
Perhaps LaBute's willingness to let the audience close enough to his characters, both psychologically and physically, to appreciate such minor-key modulations, is the movie's biggest surprise.
Arriving in theaters five years later, Next Friday is the kind of sequel that will elicit much grumping from critics and other people who purport know what's good for you. The problems with the film are obvious -- like all sequels, it's designed to make money.
In The Ninth Gate, perennial provocateur Roman Polanski throws in his contribution to the millennial apocalypse/Armageddon/hell-on-earth films that have recently been such a staple of the action/adventure genre.