i've been saving these on my hard drive for awhile until i felt like i had enough to post. well, i'll officially be taking that computer offline & replacing it as soon as tonight, so i figured i should post these: more capsule movie reviews! and just in time for oscar season.
i also have one more very special review coming up, whenever i find time to write it: a review of catman in boxer's blow (aka us catman 2: boxer blow). but first, here are some other reviews:
tape: it takes something special to pull off a film with just three actors and one set. but whatever that special something is, richard linklater has. but that's hardly a surprise for a director who can make a film like waking life one day, then make a hollywood vehicle (albeit an entertaining one) like school of rock. (imdb says his next film will be pk dick's a scanner darkly! that should be crazy... too bad it won't use the charlie kaufman script)
the killing: i recorded this due to a recommendation on exbe. i almost deleted it a few times, thinking "when am i going to get around to watching some movie from the '50s about a horse race?" then something would remind me it was directed by kubrick. needless to say it was excellent. dark, noirish, skipping back & forth in time. whenever i see sterling hayden i immediately think of general jack d. ripper: that will probably never change but he was good in this too.
the house of sand and fog: dark, depressing tale of how a bureaucratic mixup ruins the lives of a woman whose house is repo'd & the iranian immigrants who buy it after her. very nicely done. w/jennifer connelly, ben kingsley, & the woman who went on to play "mommy terrorist" on this year's 24 (actual character name: dina araz).
may: this was a rather unsettling film about a ridiculously shy girl who eventually goes crazy. i knew from the tivo description that she would eventually start killing, & i was actually relieved when she did because the stuff before that was more disturbing!
pirates of the caribbean: beautifully shot, fairly well acted, but ultimately silly. but what do you expect from a movie based on a theme park ride?
underworld: beautifully shot, not particularly well acted, needlessly long and complex, & ultimately silly and vapid.
cold mountain: well shot, well acted civil war epic. one of those films where you don't really mind that it's almost 3 hours.
mystic river: dark, suspenseful, brilliantly acted. excellent.
lemony's snicket's an unfortunate series of events: wonderfully executed dark children's tale. somewhat reminiscent of the princess bride if directed by tim burton, though probably not quite as good as princess bride. due to its unfortunately long title, everyone has taken to calling this film "lemony snicket", which is actually the name of the author of the original book. i find that amusing for some reason.
party monster: highly entertaining, stylized film about the dawning of the "new york club kids"... including a gruesome murder! after watching this, it's funny to think that "superstar dj keoki" actually got a record deal.