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It's Someone Else's Turn to Milk the Freddy Machine
This time Stephen Hopkins (Director) and (John Skipp) Writer, try and make some more money out of Wes Craven's once excellent character of Freddy.
Now Freddy is attacking people while they are awake through Alice's unborn child's dreams; the characters are now little more than scene fillers for Freddy's murderous antics and the terror really is just laughable.
I will always love the character of Freddy, Robert Englund and Wes Craven have ensured he will always be a horror icon; its beyond me why so many sequels made a mockery of him for a quick buck "i've just answered my own question there haven't I!"
4/10 for this lame sequel (Only Wes Craven can do Freddy movies properly)
Tired, oh so very Tired!
After huge success with the first outing, Wes Craven tried to correct the wrongs of Freddy's Revenge with A Nightmare on Elm Street 3, and he made no mistake about ensuring he killed Freddy and left him buried for good.
For some reason (Almost Certainly Money) Renny Harlin (Director) and William Kotzwinkle (Writer) decided to resurrect him again claiming 'Pure Evil Never Really Dies'
A Nightmare on Elm Street 4 - The Dream Master is an unnecessary sequel that is clearly milking the success of the franchise. Kristen Parker once again takes the lead (but Miss Arquette no longer plays the character) Freddy is once again funnier than he is scary, as with all the non Wes Craven episodes, and its pretty much more of the same with less story than before, and the odd decent death scene.
5/10 Freddy is still cool, even if the movie isn't
Night at the Museum (2006)
It's Harmless Family Fun
When Larry Daley (Ben Stiller) is hired as the new night watchman at the natural history museum, he soon learns that history really does come to life.
I have to say that with a cast including, Ben Stiller, Ricky Gervais, Robin Williams, Owen Wilson and Steve Coogan i expected this movie to be funnier than it turned out to be; but having said that it is still a great movie for the whole family to enjoy, and its as much a heart warming adventure as it is a comedy.
Don't get me wrong, Night at the museum does have some good laughs and some strong comedy characters, it just didn't make me laugh as much as i thought it would.
7/10 Its still an good film
I Really Enjoyed the Ride
Cris Johnson (Nicolas Cage) earns a living in a Las Vegas magic act, where the magic is no illusion, he really can see up to two minutes into the future, which has drawn the attention of FBI agent Callie Ferris (Julianne Moore) and she wants him to help foil a plot to detonate a nuclear bomb in the heart of Los Angles. Johnson and his unsuspecting girl (Jessica Biel), who is destined to be in his future, become caught up in race against time that only he can stop.
Despite its flaws, Next becomes a very compelling action thriller, that sees a really good concept play out with style. I found it was great fun to watch, and i particularly enjoyed the way the directors utilised the gift in Cages character; its was pretty original and very cool; so much so that it glossed over any flaws very well.
8/10 great fun action
The Net (1995)
Angela Bennett (Sandra Bullock) is a freelance computer analyst who spends her reclusive life tracking down computer viruses and chatting on the net. When she is sent a top secret disc, she finds herself caught up in web of corruption and conspiracy; and her life is turned on its head when her identity is deleted.
Bullock does well in the role and is ably supported by Jeremy Northam and Dennis Miller. The Net has a interesting plot and some intriguing moments, but despite this i can't help feeling it never quite reached its potential.
6/10 its a decent thriller nothing more
National Treasure (2004)
A Nice Slice of Adventure for the Whole Family
National Treasure feels similar to films like Indiana Jones and Tomb Raider, and its brought to us by Walt Disney Pictures in its usual tradition. The film is quite thought provoking, without ever being complex; it has some large flaws in the plot, but it is easily forgiven and its just slightly magical and charming in it's presentation.
Niclolas Cage, Diane Kruger and Sean Bean take the lead, and they are excellently supported by John Voight, Harvey Keitel, Christopher Plummer and Justin Bartha. Every one involved is at least adequate without any member of the cast stealing the show, and there's enough Action, Mystery, Adventure and Humour here to entertain the whole family quite easily.
Just take it at face value, sit back and enjoy; trust me its just good fun.
Mystery Men (1999)
Captain Amazing (Greg Kinnear) has always kept Champion City safe from the evil bad guys, keeping a band of wannabe super heroes in the shadows; but when Captain Amazing is captured by his arch nemesis Cassanova Frankenstein (Geoffrey Rush) its finally time for The Blue Raja (Hank Azaria), The Shoveller (William H. Macy), Mr. Furious (Ben Stiller) and more to step foreword and save the day.
Mystery Men is littered with truly ridiculous characters, each with their own spin on the superhero as we know it and they all perform brilliantly to make this film a very crazy and very funny ride.
7/10 it's very silly and great fun
My Little Eye (2002)
Big Brother Goes Homicidal
Five strangers are brought together to take part in a reality web cast, the rules are simple; they must stay in an isolated house together for 6 months to receive the prize of $1 Million, if anyone of them leaves early they all lose.
When strange things begin to occur in the house, the group suspect that someone is trying to scare them out of the house; but perhaps there is more to it than meets the eye.
Marc Evans Directs a cast of relative unknowns through this quite fresh feeling chiller, and he manages to create a dark and creepy atmosphere that helps to build and sustain the tension in preparation for a fine climax.
OK, so its a fairly trashy and a little easy to predict at times; but My Little Eye still prevails as a pretty original piece of work, that provides a few shocks.
My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002)
It Failed to Engage Me
Nia Vardalos deserves a lot of credit for the films success, she wrote it and is undoubtedly the star of the film, but after all the hype and acclaim the movie got i found it simply didn't engage me all that much. I appreciate that the film is well written and well made, but i just didn't find it particularly funny at any point in the film, and ultimately i became quite bored by the end.
I was quite surprised that i didn't warm to this film, its certainly got charm and it does have a very well balanced cast, maybe i just didn't relate to what it was trying to say as a movie, or perhaps its just not as good as its hype; either way i'm in absolutely no hurry to see it again to find out.
Murder by Numbers (2002)
Entertaining Run of the Mill Thriller
Cassie Mayweather (Sandra Bullock) is a homicide detective with a disturbing past, she and her partner Sam Kennedy (Ben Chaplin) are called in to investigate the murder of a young woman found abandoned in a ditch. When everything seems to point at the killer, Cassie's gut tells her that things are not quite as they appear, and the real killers find that they can't hide as easily as they first thought.
Murder by numbers does have some good intrigue and suspense in the plot, and yes it does try very hard to do something a fresh and different, but in the end it just seems pretty run of the mill.
6/10 It entertains and it does have a good cast, but its just not quite sharp enough on the details.
Murder in the First (1995)
A Desperate Fight For Justice
Henri Young (Kevin Bacon) is incarcerated in the prison of Alcatraz for stealing $5; when an attempt to escape is foiled, he is left to take the blame and he is kept in solitary confinement for several years. Driven Mad by the isolation, within hours of his release he takes the life of the man responsible for his suffering.
His Lawyer (Christian Slater) is given Henri's case as a way to cut his teeth as a new lawyer, after all Henri is guilty and he can't possible make this case any worse than it is.
Based on true events, Murder in the First is a truly compelling story of the torture of one man, a man that had to go to Alcatraz to become a killer.
Kevin Bacon is simply outstanding as the eccentric Henri Young, and he and Christian Slater bring this movie to life, with intrigue, suspense, passion and guts. I fail to see why this film is not rated with kinder regard than it is, but personally i thought it was a marvellous film, that i wanted to see again years later.
Murder at 1600 (1997)
Harlan Regis (Wesley Snipes) is a homicide cop, Nina Chance (Diane Lane) is a secret service agent; when a murdered victim is found in the white house they are left trying to piece together the real truth behind the murder, finding plenty of smoke and mirrors that are trying to disguise the truth.
Murder at 1600 is a good solid thriller, with an interesting premise and a strong cast, and even though its an enjoyable ride; it somehow seems to captivate less than it really should. Its still a good way to spend a few hours, but you'll find less here than initially meets the eye.
Yat goh ho yan (1997)
Funny Kung Fu Action
Jackie Chan is Mr. Nice Guy, a TV Chef who helps a beautiful young woman when she is chased by a gang of thugs. What he quickly learns is that she is a Journalist who has just uncovered a drug ring, and she has a video tape that could bring it down; and this tape accidentally gets switched with one of his own.
This is the first Jackie Chan movie to be shot entirely in English, and its a fast paced all action, Kung-Fu fighting, comedy roller-coaster that simply great fun to watch. Chan is typically awesome at his art of fighting and in his usual style he takes on the bad guys and kicks butt throughout the movie.
7/10 Great fun and packed with great martial arts, done the Jackie Chan way.
Mr. & Mrs. Smith (2005)
Probably not as good as it could have been, but its fun nonetheless
Brad Pit and Angelina Jolie are John and Jane Smith, a bored married couple who both have the same secret; they are both assassins working for rival organisations. When their paths cross in the line of duty it brings a whole new meaning to the phrase 'Till Death Do Us Part!"
Mr. and Mrs Smith definitely doesn't lack sex appeal, Starring two of Hollywoods most sought after love interests, and it doesn't fall short on action or laughs either, but with a similar concept to the likes of 'True Lies' i had very high hopes for this film, and sadly it fell a little short of those expectations; that said, it is still worth watching and does entertain pretty well.
Mr. Deeds (2002)
Pretty Funny, but Ultimately Average
Longfellow Deeds (Adam Sandler) is a small town guy who is taken to the big city when he learns he has an inheritance of $40 billion from a long lost uncle. He has to adjust to life in a Palatial Mansion with a personal butler, and he meets a beautiful school nurse (Winona Ryder); but its not long before the money begins to change everything, and he learns things are not what they seem.
This remake is not without plenty of laughs, but it never quite manages to do anything thats truly hilarious or new. For a bit of fun its worth a watch, but it's one of those films that you will forget about pretty quickly.
6/10 its just average i'm afraid
The Mothman Prophecies (2002)
A Good Psychological Thriller
John Klein (Richard Gere) feels drawn to investigate the mysterious circumstances surrounding his wife's death. He begins to discover the mystery of the Mothman; a supernatural being that terrifies the residents of Point Pleasant (a small town in West Virgina).
Based on true events, this thriller is pieced together nicely, and has a splendidly creepy atmosphere throughout, with many skin crawling moments and pshycological thrills. I definitely think that its the 'based on true events' that helps it to get under your skin.
Despite the great atmosphere and a strong cast, The Mothman Prophecies still manages to feel somewhat empty by the end, it's by no means a poor film, it just seems to fizzle out and leave too much unanswered.
7/10 worth watching and it does make you think
Pretty Average Bond Flick that Jumped on the Band Wagon
It became pretty fashionable to make space films in the 70's, after the huge impact of Star Wars, it seemed to be what the audience wanted; Bond however is definitely better off keeping his adventures here on earth, but thankfully Moonraker is not a total flop because of it.
Once again Roger Moore takes the mantle as bond, this time up against a new villain with delusions of world domination, and lets not forget the the return of the wonderful steel toothed bad guy 'Jaws'
Mooraker does have plenty of good moments and plenty of the usual Bond style action; it just gets a little ridiculous to ever be one of the best.
Basically its the Best of Flying Circus
With this movie, all python fans will no exactly what they are getting, it basically all the best sketches from the Flying Circus series, re-filmed and arranged into a anthology of comedy genius.
Nearly all of the favourites are included, and of course the whole Python Gang is here; making this a real treat for every fan of the series.
The thing with Python comedy is the originality of the gags and the characters, but sadly they do have limited appeal for the new generation; such is the sheer lunacy and diversity of the humour.
I give it 8/10 "Nudge, Nudge, Wink, Wink; Say No More!"
This Time it's Not Quite as Good
After Gracie Hart's (Sandra Bullock) beauty pageant experience in the first film, she has become too well known to work undercover, and instead she has become the face of the FBI, doing talk shows and the like; that is until two of her pageant friends are kidnapped.
Miss Congeniality 2 has some of the original cast, but it is definitely not as fresh or as funny as the first movie. Once again it is a bit of harmless fun, that can be enjoyed quite easily; but it never becomes anything more than just average.
However i never had high hopes for this sequel so i wasn't completely dissatisfied by what was ultimately delivered.
Miss Congeniality (2000)
Its Actually Good Fun
Gracie Hart (Sandra Bullock) is an FBI Agent who is somewhat lacking in feminine qualities, when the Miss United States Beauty Pageant is under threat from a killer; she is entered into the contest as Miss New Jersey and Victor Melling (Michael Caine) an expert at create winners is charged with making Miss Hart a Miss United States Contender.
Sandra Bullock transforms completely into the beauty that she really is, but not without plenty of mishaps and giggles along the way. All the cast pitch in with good performances to help make Miss Congeniality a pretty fun film, that never becomes too sappy or sickly, and it actually is good entertainment.
Mission: Impossible (1996)
Its a Decent Adaptation to the Big Screen
Tom Cruise Ethan Hunt, a secret agent framed for the deaths of his espionage team, is on the run from government assassins, as he tries to uncover the shocking who's and why's of his setup.
Cruise performs well in the role, and the support from Jon Voight, Emmanuelle Beart, Jean Reno, Ving Rhames and more is strong and definitely adds plenty of body to the film.
With some good intrigue and tension, a few breathtaking stunts and a strong conspiracy style plot; Mission Impossible is a decent adaptation of the original series, without really being too familiar.
7/10 but should have been better
Mission: Impossible II (2000)
More of an Action Movie than a Spy Thriller
Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) is back, and this time John Woo is in the directors chair, which can only mean one thing.
Mission Impossible II still keeps some of the spy feel found in the first incarnation, but this time its interlaced with some brilliant action sequences and some original stunts sequences that are great fun to watch. I think what impressed me most about this film was the fight sequence near the end, it really did seem very realistic considering the training and background of the characters involved.
To carry the action along, a good storyline is introduced, that is both compelling and clever enough to keep our interest throughout.
With a few old faces and the introduction of Thandie Newton and Dougray Scott, the cast is again pretty solid; all in all this second incarnation bears almost no resemblance to the original series, yet it still entertains purely as an action picture with some substance.
I found it to be a thrilling ride, and i enjoyed it more than the first film 8/10
The Karate Kid (1984)
It's not all about the Karate
Ralph Macchio is cast as Daniel Larusso, a kid who has to move where his mother job takes them; and he soon discovers that fitting in at his new school is going to be an up hill struggle.
Pat Morita is cast as Mr. Miyagi, the general handyman for the living quarters Daniel and his mother now occupy. When Mr. Miyagi decides to help young Daniel to face up to his tormentors, we are given a lesson in the spiritual and physical power of Karate, and more importantly its place in young Daniel's every day life.
The Karate Kid entertains quite easily, it never becomes too complex for its own good and it does have some decent fight scenes that keep the story flowing well.
Overall its a little bit too sentimental and sometimes a bit laughable, but delivers the story well and its a fun film.
Casino Royale (2006)
A Contender for the Best Bond Yet!
Casino Royale takes the Bond Character back to his raw roots, and reflects the image of Bond that Ian Flemming had in the first place.
After all the fuss and upset over naming Daniel Craig as Brosnan's successor in the Bond hot seat, i'm happy to say that he is quite simply an inspired choice in the role.
Loaded with fast paced action from the start, we get too see James Bond evolve as the movie progresses, he has to learn many lessons in being a '00' agent the hard way; and the film is gritty and raw enough to portray it superbly.
Casino Royale is both visually impressive and excellently made, and despite still having a few far fetched moments, it feels like the bond character is reborn. Dare i say its the perfect start to Daniel Craig's reign as Bond, and he proves with just a few very well known words right at the end of the picture, that he will undoubtedly succeed.
Inside Man (2006)
A Very Intelligent Thriller
Spike Lee has crafted a very compelling and clever heist thriller, Denzel Washington and Clive Owen are the main leads, and they both deliver top notch performances. Strong support is given by Jodie Foster, Willem Defoe and Christopher Plummer; and it all adds up to create a cracking film.
Packed with intrigue and mystery right till the end, Inside Man prevails as one of the better thrillers in recent times, and credit to Spike Lee for the style and originality of the direction; it really does have a fresh feel throughout.
Fine Performances from everyone concerned, coupled with a strong story will ensure this film is remembered and enjoyed by most people that have the pleasure to watch it.
8/10 and a must for thriller fans