Author Topic: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010  (Read 172677 times)

KinkyCyborg

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #570 on: November 21, 2010, 12:58:44 AM »
Dragon Wars



Title:Dragon Wars
Year: 2007
Director: Hyung Rae Shim
Rating: PG-13
Length: 90 Min.
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 2.40:1, Pan & Scan 1.33:1
Audio: English: Dolby Digital: 5.1, French: Dolby Digital: Dolby Surround
Subtitles: Chinese, English, French, Korean, Spanish

Stars:
Jason Behr
Amanda Brooks
Robert Forster
Craig Robinson
Aimee Garcia

Plot:
Meet Buraki, the vicious, 200-meter-long Imoogi serpent from ancient Korea. His army includes giant lizards with missile launchers, flying dragons, soldiers bred for evil and mega-intelligent dinosaurs. Together, they will destroy our cities unless reincarnated warriors Ethan and Sarah can outrun them and resurrect the Good Imoogi, Buraki's ancient nemesis. DRAGON WARS reveals every last detail of Earth's greatest battle—a war you'll only believe when you see it for yourself.

Extras:
Scene Access
Bonus Trailers
Featurettes
Gallery
Storyboard Comparisons
Closed Captioned

My Thoughts:

Leapin' lizards!

I would have been much happier if they had of just made this a simple story about dormant dragons coming out of the woodwork to wreak havoc on the world. Instead they wrapped that basic premise tightly into a story about Korean mythology and legend. The result what somewhat cheesy and hokey.  ::)

In some instances the CGI was brilliant and in others embarrassing. I loved the warring between the dragon hordes and man's technology in the big city and wished for longer sustained battles.

The giant, bumbling, turtle like reptiles with the rocket launchers were nifty and the air to air combat between the flying lizards and the gunships was thrilling!

I give high marks for originality in this one but what should have been a straight forward check your brain at the door fantasy/action flick was tainted by the director who tried to turn it into a story which usually results in a flawed equation.


KC

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KinkyCyborg

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #571 on: November 21, 2010, 04:57:24 PM »
The Falcon And The Snowman



Title:The Falcon and the Snowman
Year: 1984
Director: John Schlesinger
Rating: R
Length: 131 Min.
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 1.85:1
Audio: English: Dolby Digital: Dolby Surround
Subtitles: English, French

Stars:
Timothy Hutton
Sean Penn
Pat Hingle
Joyce Van Patten
Boyce Children

Plot:
Academy Award™ winner* Timothy Hutton (Ordinary People) and Sean Penn (Dead Man Walking) deliver "superb performances" (Variety) in a true-story spy thriller that is "scathing, arresting" (The New York Times) and laced with white-knuckle excitement. From Oscar® winners** John Schlesinger (Midnight Cowboy) and Steven Zaillian (Schindler’s List), the film blows the lid off the modern-day American dream with its riveting story of two young men of privilege, money and ambition who end up selling out their country, ruining their families and destroying their lives.

Chris Boyce (Hutton) works a low-level job at a defense plant where he uncovers documents that prove that the C.I.A. is secretly coercing foreign governments. He confides in his conniving, fast-talking friend, Andrew Daulton Lee (Penn), a reckless drug dealer and user, who convinces him to sell this information to the Soviets for big bucks. Lee boldly cuts a deal with the KGB, but soon the stakes spin out of control as the Soviets up the ante, Lee descends further into drug abuse, and the C.I.A. prepare to take the informants down!

*1980: Supporting Actor, Ordinary People
** Schlesinger: 1969, Director, Midnight Cowboy;
Zaillian: 1993, Writing, Schindler's List

Extras:
Scene Access
Closed Captioned

My Thoughts:

Captivating true story about a young, privileged man who lets his idealistic views and discontent towards his government lead him to impulsively sell secrets to the KGB. Bringing his loose cannon, drugged out friend along for the ride, they quickly find themselves in way over their heads.

Second or third time watching this now, I've always liked this movie. Showing how the CIA would (and probably still does) coerce and manipulate foreign governments, it fascinates me how they feel it incumbent to stick their noses into everyone's business. For Timothy Hutton's character, Boyce, selling out his country was his way of protesting this political interference.

Hutton was great. He was thriving in the 80's as a hot young actor in demand but like many other young actors from that era, re: Brat Packers, his relevance has waned mostly, playing in mostly low budget straight to video movies now, although he has seen a bit of a resurgence in his new TV series Leverage.

Now Sean Penn on the other hand who, in my opinion, gave his best ever performance in this movie despite his young age, was giving us a taste of things to come in his brilliant, if not turbulent career. Daulton Lee was immortalized by Penn's role as the shifty, fast talking, drug dealing spy wannabe. Dealing in espionage which already breeds paranoia, his constant cocaine and heroin use just compounded his troubles and brought him precariously close to being terminated. Penn is masterful in portraying troubled, desperate men and this was a grand performance.

Great movie. This should be mandatory in anyone's collection!

KC

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KinkyCyborg

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #572 on: November 22, 2010, 01:36:41 AM »
The Contract



Title:The Contract
Year: 2007
Director: Bruce Beresford
Rating: R
Length: 96 Min.
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 2.35:1
Audio: English: Dolby Digital: 5.1, English: DTS: 5.1, English: Dolby Digital: 2-Channel Stereo
Subtitles: English, Spanish

Stars:
Morgan Freeman (1937)
John Cusack
Jamie Anderson
Alice Krige
Megan Dodds

Plot:
While on a hiking trip to reconnect with his son, Ray Keene (John Cusack) stumbles into a nightmare scenario of paid assassins and ex-military guns-for-hire. Frank Cardin (Morgan Freeman) is attempting to fulfill a contract to assassinate a high profile businessman when things go awry and he ends up in the custody of the U.S. Marshalls. After an ill-fated attempt by his compatriots to free him Frank, finds himself in the custody of ex-lawman Ray and his son (Jamie Anderson). As they try to make their way back to civilization they are relentlessly pursued by Frank's friends who are intent on freeing their leader in order to collect on the contract. But one may be more foe than friend.

Extras:
Scene Access
Feature Trailers
Featurettes
Gallery

My Thoughts:

An ex-cop and his son, while on a hiking trip deep in the woods, apprehend an assassin following a botched rescue attempt from Federal Marshals by his fellow mercenaries. Compelled to do the right thing, he attempts to bring the fugitive to the authorities while trying to preserve the life of his son and his own from the deadly pursuers.

I can't say I've ever watched a Morgan Freeman movie that I disliked and this is no exception. Freeman is stellar as the wily old hitman whom despite having no compunction about killing has moments of conscience towards his erstwhile captors. As strong as his desire to gain his freedom is he hopes to do so without harm coming to a decent man, played by John Cusack, and his bright teenage boy.

Fast paced and suspenseful without an overkill of action, this manages to keep the viewer interested by cat and mouse strategy between the hunters and the hunted. Throw in a betrayal or two to raise the stakes and you have the makings of a very good movie.

Loved it!  :D

KC


Rating:
« Last Edit: November 23, 2010, 02:51:43 AM by KinkyCyborg »

KinkyCyborg

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #573 on: November 23, 2010, 02:54:26 AM »
Heartburn



Title:Heartburn
Year: 1986
Director: Mike Nichols
Rating: R
Length: 109 Min.
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 1.85:1
Audio: English: Dolby Digital: 5.1, English: Dolby Digital: Mono
Subtitles: English

Stars:
Meryl Streep
Jack Nicholson
Jeff Daniels
Maureen Stapleton
Stockard Channing

Plot:
Meryl Streep and Jack Nicholson are wonderful together in this wickedly funny look at modern romance based on Nora Ephron's acerbic best-selling novel and directed by Mike Nichols (The Graduate, Postcards From The Edge).

Streep plays Rachel, a successful food writer who puts love and motherhood ahead of her career. Nicholson plays Mark, a woman-chasing newspaper columnist who can't quite give up his old tricks. She lives in New York. He lives in Washington D.C. And if all those complications won't give a relationship Heartburn, nothing will!

Extras:
Scene Access
Closed Captioned

My Thoughts:

This movie was a complete snooze fest through the first hour and only picked up slightly in the second half with some mildly humorous scenes that garnered a few smirks from me.

Meryl Streep had a few clever moments but mostly her character was a pathetic scatterbrain. And Jack Nicholson playing a womanizer?!?! No way!!  ::) Early role for Kevin Spacey as a thief.

I was expecting much more from leads the caliber of Streep and Nicholson but this was quite ho-hum.

KC

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Offline Antares

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #574 on: November 23, 2010, 07:26:42 PM »
I've never understood the fascination with Mike Nichols' films. The majority seem to be vastly overrated.
« Last Edit: November 23, 2010, 07:31:06 PM by Antares »

Najemikon

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #575 on: November 23, 2010, 09:03:33 PM »
He's had his moments, like The Graduate. And I do think Working Girl is the best modern romantic comedy. This isn't very scientific, I admit, but you know what I mean! ;) More recently, I thought Closer was interesting, if flawed, but Charlie Wilson's War is marvellous.

Offline Antares

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #576 on: November 24, 2010, 12:59:12 AM »
He's had his moments, like The Graduate.

You see, I've never understood the fascination with this film. Now granted, I had never seen it in its entirety. I had always either caught just the beginning or just the end. Well, two weeks ago I finally watched it from beginning to end.

The verdict?

This film is one contrived plot point after another. Mrs. Robinson seducing a whiny, nebbish dork. Ben taking Elaine on the first 'date' to a strip club, just to piss her off, then instantly falling in love with her the next day. Ben stalking Elaine at Berkeley, and then she falls in love with him. Rubbish...take out the Simon & Garfunkel soundtrack and the cinematographers work and this film is crap.

Halo2

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #577 on: November 24, 2010, 01:36:52 AM »
Antares, I agree with you that The Graduate is rubbish.
I, unfortunately, have seen the film entirely too many time from start to finish.
It was being played endlessly by the military entertainment network (AFRTS) when I was stationed overseas in the early 70s.
I had a friend that was the local station manger that loved the film and made it his mission to convert me when I foolishly professed my, then, dislike.
We had endless "discussions" regarding the film and I must have sat through 20 screenings of it while he was making his points.
All he succeeded in doing was to ensure that Richard Benjimin was on my short list of actors that I never care if I ever watch anything they are in again.
I love Simon & Garfunkel, but always have a bad taste in my mouth whenever I hear any of their songs from this movie.

hal9g

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #578 on: November 24, 2010, 03:51:37 AM »
Wow!  I love The Graduate!

Maybe it's because I saw it at a drive-in when I was 17 with the girl who I lost my virginity to....that night!

And the sound track is awesome!

hal9g

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #579 on: November 24, 2010, 04:00:30 AM »
snip

All he succeeded in doing was to ensure that Richard Benjimin was on my short list of actors that I never care if I ever watch anything they are in again.

snip

Richard Benjamin?  I don't get the link there?

Portnoy's Complaint turned me off Benjamin (a few years later).
« Last Edit: November 24, 2010, 04:02:51 AM by Hal »

Halo2

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #580 on: November 24, 2010, 08:36:56 AM »
 :bag:

My mistake Hal. I dislike the movie so much I confused the fact that Dustin Hoffman was the character and not Richard Benjiman. I dislike him for other reasons.
To his credit, I have enjoyed most of Dustin Hoffman's other movies that I have seen.

 :stars:

KinkyCyborg

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #581 on: November 27, 2010, 06:32:32 PM »
Iron Man



Title:Iron Man
Year: 2008
Director: Jon Favreau
Rating: PG-13
Length: 126 Min.
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 2.35:1
Audio: English: Dolby Digital: 5.1, French: Dolby Digital: 5.1, Spanish: Dolby Digital: 5.1
Subtitles: English, French, Spanish

Stars:
Robert Downey, Jr. [Robert Downey Jr.]
Terrence Howard
Jeff Bridges
Gwyneth Paltrow
Leslie Bibb

Plot:
Suit up for action with ROBERT DOWNEY JR. in the ultimate adventure movie you've been waiting for, Iron Man! When jet-setting genius-industrialist Tony Stark is captured in enemy territory, he builds a high-tech suit of armor to escape. Now, he's on a mission to save the world as a hero who's built, not born, to be unlike any other. Co-starring TERRENCE HOWARD, JEFF BRIDGES and GWYNETH PALTROW, it's a fantastic, high-flying journey that is "hugely entertaining" (Joe Morgenstern, The Wall Street Journal).

Extras:
Scene Access
Bonus Trailers
Deleted Scenes
Featurettes
Closed Captioned

My Thoughts:


Time for my pick and I decided that since I just picked up the sequel I should get around to watching the first installment.

If you are looking for a good action movie to watch you can rarely go wrong by picking any one of the Marvel comic book film adaptations and Iron Man certainly delivered. Combine all the explosions in this movie and you have another Hiroshima! I like how the birth of Iron Man unfolded, using current day conflicts as a vehicle to tell the story. Not my favorite comic growing up (I was always partial to the Fantastic Four) but I sure liked his character in the movie.

This movie marked Robert Downey Jr's complete comeback from a drug induced abyss that took many good years away from his career and in so coming back he has actually ascended into the superstar stratosphere. Great for him but it has evolved into something that is now quite a pet peeve of mine. Every interview, every awards appearance, every time he sticks his face in front of a camera he is posturing, shades on, and playing the role of THE MAN which was funny and somewhat deserving at first but c'mon... zip it already!  :-X

Interesting role for Jeff Bridges as the sans hair villain and I think he plays a bad guy very convincingly. Gwyneth Paltrow was neither her nor there in this one for me... probably they overpaid for a star for what could have been filled by any number of young, cute actresses. Much was made of the exclusion of Terrence Howard from the sequel but I'm not disappointed. Nothing about his performance stood out and I feel that Don Cheadle, his replacement, has much more personality anyway.

What impresses me most about Iron Man was that is was a great movie coming from director Jon Favreau, who also had a bit part in this one. I've always disliked his loudmouthed, vulgar roles as an actor save for his performance in Rocky Marciano. If this movie, it's sequel and the upcoming Cowboys & Aliens is any indication, perhaps he has finally found his calling. If he can consistently put out big budget, blockbuster caliber movies than he can thankfully put his sub-par acting career to bed.


KC

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Offline Dragonfire

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #582 on: November 28, 2010, 06:18:34 AM »
I thought Howard was fine in this one..but nothing special.  So I didn't really care that Cheadle took over the part.  I liked him better.

I have read that Howard was very difficult on set during the first one and he was demanding a lot for the second.  Think I heard about him being demanding on another set too...  Though who knows.

KinkyCyborg

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #583 on: November 29, 2010, 01:57:33 AM »
I've also read that Howard can be difficult to work with. Not sure what his deal is. Burning bridges in Hollywood is a good way to find yourself doing STV flicks.  :-\

Offline Dragonfire

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Re: KinkyCyborg's Random Reviews 2010
« Reply #584 on: November 29, 2010, 02:12:30 AM »
He did get good reviews for some of his earlier movies...seems like he let that go to his head or something.
I did think he sounded a bit...umm...arrogant in a few interviews I've seen him in.