0 Clowns: Near perfection, possibly one of the greatest of all time.
5 Slightly enjoyable, fallible film or at least watch-able.
10 Clowns: One of the worst pieces of garbage ever to be put on film.
|Observe & Report||3.75||-||-||3.75||-||-|
|The Hurt Locker||4.00||-||-||-||-||4|
|Up In The Air||4.50||-||-||6||-||3|
|Land of the Lost||5.00||-||-||5||-||-|
|The Haunting of Connecticutt||7.50||-||-||7.5||-||-|
|Angels & Demons||9.50||-||-||9.5||-||-|
Drooga - 27 Dresses (6), Smart People, Narnia, Bucket, WALL-E, Step Bros., Vantage Point, Bank Job, 21, Definitely Maybe, W., Rachel Getting Married, Ben Button, Frost/Nixon, Rev Road
Dammit Epps - Role Models, Valkyrie, Tropic Thunder
Jill Goo - 27 Dresses (6)
Sonn Dogg - Moon 1
Soggy Pockets -- Terminator 8
At the University of Disbelief and Distrust, all of the forensic psychology majors apparently preen and pose in the classroom only to set up their professor, the great Dr. Jack Gramm, played by Al Pa-chi-chi-chi-head-ino. Or is one of them working with a serial killer that Gramm helped put in prison? Well, these are the problems that come along when you're Dr. Jack Gramm Forensic Psychologist!
Why would someone want him dead? Do you really care? Apparently his cocksure attitude, his penchant for using his know-how to send serial killers to death row, and his constant womanizing have rubbed people the wrong way. Literally. And for one or more of these reasons Dr. Jack Gramm Forensic Psychologist! has 88 minutes to live.
Despite the holes in this film (of which a Forensic Mathematician! would have difficulty counting), Pacino and his 18 inches of hair do their best to make this movie work. If anything, they play it subdued (as subdued as a hairpiece bigger than Godzilla can be).
The one thing that doesn't work is the implausibility of only one person being involved with the string of break-ins, murders with a side of body string-ups, forensic set-ups, and harassing cell phone calls that occur within the 88 minutes. Granted a few of them occur a little before, but still, not even Dustin Hoffman in Outbreak could be at so many places at one time. (No monkeys were harmed in this movie).
Not to say that Dr. Jack Gramm Forensic Psychologist! doesn't skim the surface of reality. A student is murdered and he goes about his business. He gets a phone call threatening his life and merely hangs up to continue teaching his class. Two motorcycled crazies shoot at him and he scurries on his way as his apartment goes up in flames. His car blows up - talk to the police? Nah, lets go over to a hooker's house and see what she knows about the whole thing. Does any of this make sense? No? Now you know how I feel.
The screenplay was a mess with about as many red herrings legally allowed in a theater at one time. Many poor supporting roles, which could garner some Clownies. Ultimately though it was more forgettable than terrible. I just thank God it wasn't called 188 Minutes.
You Don't Mess With The Zohan
How could a comedy written by the team of Judd Apatow, Robert Smigel, and Adam Sandler flop? Sounds impossible, but their You Don't Mess With The Zohan did just that. My guess here is that while all three are individually capable of producing hilarious material, their styles are quite different and the combination just failed to mesh.
In many of the Apatow films, the main character is left hanging - it becomes uncomfortable and painful to watch, but they manage to still be funny and gain some smpathy for that same main character. In the poker game scene in The 40 Year Old Virgin, it's obvious that Andy Stitzer he has no idea what he's talking about and the scene seems extended to create this uncomfortable comedy.
Yet, you take the writing styles of Robert Smigel (Triumph The Insult Comic Dog, SNL's TV Funhouse), which is generally quick hitting zingers and add that with Sandler's uber-honest, aww-shucks comedic skills and it equals a dud. The film appeared to be all over the place and it lands squarely in the hands of the script. Too many crotch shots of Zohan, misguided political commentary, and a shaky plot doomed this movie.
A la mid 2000's Tiger Woods, Sandler for the past few years has been trying out a new swing, but it's not working. He's at his best with the innocent boob that overcomes the advesity put before him that he never wanted to deal with in the first place. In Sandler's characters worlds if nothing ever happend the better their lives would be. But here he plays an over-the-top super-agent-military types (who for some reason is physically impossible to kill), that is the antithesis of the Barry Egan/Longfellow Deeds/Waterboys types. He gets all the ladies, he is buff, he is cool.
Now I'm not one to assume that an actor needs to play the same character over and over again, but sometimes you don't mess with a good thing Zohan.. So after five years of trying something a little bit different (other than the underrated 50 First Dates), Sandler hasn't done much other than middling trash.
Every year there's a
movie that people seem to be "afraid" to dislike. Slumdog Millionaire is that film in 2008. Not to say that it's
a bad movie, it just isn't that good. If you extracted the India element
and replaced it with an Appalachian Trail element, it would be quickly
It is true that there are scenes that will strike some
Western movie goers as shocking. The movie portrays Jamal, Salim, and
Lakita, the "slumdogs", and their struggles as they grow up until Jamal
eventually lands on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire. Director Danny Boyle
moves from the past to present to tell the story, juxtaposing Jamal's
knowledge of the questions asked with various experiences from his past.
This is where the movies loses it's steam. The events
that Jamal and Salim experienced as children were much more interesting
and provocative than in the modern day. I think there would be more at
stake had we watched the children move from literally nothing (after an
attack on their village they take rescue in a shed) to their young adult
accomplishments. Granted one eventually works for a street thug and the
other for a phone company, but it sure beat some of their other "homes".
However, since the story is interwoven we see them at their worst and
see them as adults, so it takes the suspense out of many of the
childhood scenes. Unfortunate. (It also doesn't help that the lead
character Jamal is played by the half-asleep Dev Patel)
But again, I believe that moviemakers usually decide to make movies in non-linear fashion to hide the fact that you're watching a mediocre film with a ho-hum story. And that would be the case with Slumdog Millionaire.