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Reviews
(just scroll down to read)
Dahmer (5/10)
Daltry Calhoun (6.5/10)
Damnation Alley (7/10)
The Damned United (8/10)
Danielson: A Family Movie (7.5/10)
Dan In Real Life (5.5/10)
Danny Deckchair (7.5/10)
Daredevil (2/10)
Dark City (7/10)
The Dark Knight (7.5/10) 
Darkness (3/10)
Darkon (3/10)
Dark Water (5.5/10)
Date Night (7/10)
Dawn of the Dead (7/10)
The Day After (4/10)
The Day After Tomorrow (7.5/10)
Day of the Dead (7.5/10)
The Day the Earth Stood Still (4/10)
Days of Thunder (6.5/10)
Dazed and Confused (10/10)
Dead and Breakfast (5/10)
Dead Man's Shoes (7.5/10)
Dead Snow (6/10)
Deathbed (1/10)
Death Hunt (7.5/10)
Deathwatch (5/10)
Death Wish (6.5/10)
December Boys (5/10)
The Deep (5/10)
Defiance (7/10)
Defiance (6/10)
The Defiant Ones (8/10)
Deja Vu (5.5/10)
Delta Force (5/10)
The Departed (9/10)
Derailed (6/10)
Desperate Man Blues (8/10)
Detour (6/10)
The Devil and Daniel Johnston (8/10)
The Devil Came from Akasava (4/10)
The Devil Came on Horseback (8/10)
Diamonds and Rust (6/10)
Die Hard (8.5/10)
Dillinger (7/10)
Dinner for Schmucks (7/10)
Dirty Harry (7.5/10)
Dirty Pretty Things (7/10)
A Dirty Shame (4/10)
Dirty War (7/10)
Dirty Work (8.5/10)
District 9 (7.5/10)
Do You Wanna Know A Secret? (2/10)
Dr. Chopper (0/10)
Dr. Giggles (3/10)
Dodgeball (7/10)
Dog Days (4/10)
Dogville (0/10)
Domino (5/10)
Don't Come Knocking (6/10)
Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead (7/10)
Doom (4/10)
The Doom Generation (4/10)
Doubt (6/10)
Dreams To Remember: The Legacy of Otis Redding (6.5/10)
The Driver (5/10)
The Dukes of Hazard (5/10)
Duplex (3/10)
Duplicity (3/10)

Eagle Vs. Shark (6/10)
East of Havana (6.5/10)
Eastern Promises (8/10)
Easy A (7/10)
Eaten Alive (6/10)
Ed Gein (5/10)
An Education (7/10)
El Bola (7.5/10)
Electra Glide In Blue (6/10)
Elegy (6/10)
Elephant (5/10)
Elf (7.5/10)
Elizabeth 1 (3/10)
Elizabethtown (5.5/10)
Emperor of the North Pole (8/10)
Empire of the Sun (10/10)
Employee of the Month (5/10)
Encounters at the End of the World (7/10)
End of Days (5/10)
End of the Century (9/10)
The English Surgeon (7/10)
Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (8.5/10)
Envy (3/10)
Equilibrium (6/10)
Eragon (3/10)
Escape from New York (9/10)
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (6.5/10)
Europa Europa (7/10)
Even Dwarves Started Small (4/10)
Ever Since The World Ended (3/10)
Everything Is Illuminated (8/10)
Evil Breed: The Legend of Samhain (3/10)
The Exiles (5/10)
Exit Through the Gift Shop (8/10)
The Exorcism of Emily Rose (5.5/10)
The Exorcist: The Beginning (3/10)
Explicit Ills (5/10)
The Express (6.5/10)
Extract (7.5/10)
Extreme Ops (0/10)
Eye See You (3/10)

Face (5.5/10)
Factotum (7/10)
Failure to Launch (4.5/10)
Fakers (4/10)
The Family Stone (5/10)
Fast & Furious (4/10)
Fast Food Nation (6.5/10)
Fast Times at Ridgemont High (10/10)
Fear (3/10)
Fear Strikes Out (6/10)
Fear X (5/10)
Feardotcom (3/10)
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (10/10)
Festival Express (8/10)
The Fighter (8/10)
The Final Destination (3/10)
Final Destination 3 (2/10)
Find Me Guilty (7.5/10)
Firewall (6/10)
The Firm (7/10)
The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh (6/10)
F.I.S.T. (5/10)
Flags of Our Fathers (6/10)
Flightplan (2/10)
The Fog (4/10)
Food, Inc. (6/10)
Food of the Gods (5/10)
The Foot Fist Way (6.5/10)
The Football Factory (5.5/10)
For Your Consideration (7/10)
Forgetting Sara Marshall (7.5/10)
The Forgotten (5/10)
Fortress 2 (2/10)
48 Hours (8/10)
Forty Shades of Blue (4/10)
The 40 Year Old Virgin (7.5/10)
Four Brothers (7/10)
Fracture (7/10)
Frantic (6/10)
Freedomland (7/10)
Friday Night Lights (8/10)
Friday the 13th: Part VII (4/10)
The Front Page (6.5/10)
Frost/Nixon (7/10)
Frozen River (8/10)
Fubar (6/10)
Funny People (7/10)
Futureworld (5/10)

Gacy (3/10)
Zach Galifianakis: Live at the Purple Onion (8.5/10)
The Game Plan (3/10)
Gangs of New York (8/10)
Garden (5/10)
Garden State (6/10)
Gates of Heaven (10/10)
The Getaway (7.5/10)
Ghostbusters 2 (6.5/10)
Ghostrider (2/10)
Ghost Ship (7/10)
The Ghost Writer (8/10)
The Ghosts of Abu Gharib (7.5/10)
Ghosts of Cite Soleil (7.5/10)
The Giant Spider Invasion (3/10)
Gigantic: A Tale of Two Johns (7.5/10)
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra (5.5/10)
Gimme An "F" (0/10)
Ginger Snaps (5/10)
Girlhood (4/10)
The Girl In Lover's Lane (3/10)
The Girl on a Motorcycle (4/10)
Glengarry Glen Ross (10/10)
Glory Road (5.5/10)
Goin’ South (8/10)
Going Berserk (5.5/10)
Golden Ninja Warrior (5/10)
Gomorrah (7/10)
Gone (4/10)
The Gong Show Movie (7/10)
Goodbye Lenin (7.5/10)
Goodbye Solo (7.5/10)
Goodfellas (10/10)
The Good German (6/10)
Good Hair (7/10)
Good Husband, Dear Son (9/10)
The Good Shephard (5/10)
The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard (6.5/10)
Gotham Fish Tales (6.5/10)
Gothika (3/10)
Gozu (5/10)
Gran Torino (7/10)
Grandma's Boy (7/10)
The Gray Man (5/10)
The Great Raid (5.5/10)
Green Street Hooligans (7/10)
Grey Gardens (9/10)
Grind (3/10)
Grindhouse: Death Proof (7/10)
Grindhouse: Planet Terror (8/10)
Grizzly Man (7/10)
Groundhog Day (10/10)
The Ground Truth (7/10)
The Grudge (4.5/10)
The Grudge 2 (5/10)
The Guardian (6/10)
A Guide To Recognizing Your Saints (6.5/10)
Gummo (9/10)
Gunner Palace (8/10)


Dahmer (2002)
 - 5 out of 10 -

The good about this film: I liked that it was told from the killer’s point of view much like “Henry”, and not in
the typical exploitive way that these things are usually portrayed.  I think it does a decent job of showing
Dahmer “the human” and not solely “the monster”.  Jeremy Renner did a pretty convincing job of being as
creepy as Dahmer probably was, but he may have been a little too handsome for the role…but that’s
Hollywood for you.

The bad about this film: Maybe it’s the sadist in me, but I would have liked more focus on the victims –
killing them, eating them, sleeping with them…it is a horror movie after all, let’s make with the horror.  It
was paced a little slow at times, with too much focus on the minutia of scenes and not a large enough
view on the murders he was commiting as a whole.  I can see what the film maker was going for, but it
didn’t work that well.  Not awful, but awfully boring at times.


Daltry Calhoun (2005)
- 6.5 out of 10 -

This film was obviously supposed to be a touching commentary on family life and persevering through hard
times, but for the most part it was goofy movie about an awkward grass seed baron trying to get through life.
It's a rather inconsequential movie, but Johnny Knoxville does a good job as Daltry and I suppose it has that
feel-good ending that most folks enjoy.



Damnation Alley (1977)
 - 6 out of 10 -

The fact that I only saw this a few weeks ago but couldn’t remember anything about it until I looked it
up probably says a lot about this movie.  Even though it is in my favorite genre - that being anything
“post-apocalyptic” – it is not a stand-out of the style.  After a full scale nuclear war, a handful of survivors
from an army base decide to road trip in their military tank-van-whatchamadoohickey to Albany, where
apparently life is good and survivors abound.  In the course of their trip they run into all sorts of cheesy
creatures trying to attack them, like giant scorpions and deadly cockroaches and hell there may have
even been some dung beetles with super powers, I lost track.  Even the presence of the Bad News Bear
himself, Jackie Earle Haley can’t elevate this above average. 


The Damned United (2009)
 - 8 out of 10 -

Being the typical American I didn't know dick about the back story of Brian Clough, the legendary English
soccer manager, but his tale made for some damn fascinating viewing regardless of nationality.  It keeps
you interested from start to finish, from his early days at the lower tier Darby County to the rise and quick
fall from Leeds United and then ending on his resurgence with the awesomely named Nottingham Forest. 
Michael Sheen (aka that British actor that looks just like Tony Blair) does a fantastic job in the lead, and
the always impressive Timothy Spall plays his right hand man Peter Taylor. 



Danielson: A Family Movie (2006)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -

With the music of Danielson, you either like it or you don't - I personally love it, whereas my girlfriend
equates it to the sound of 10,000 dying horses.  Different strokes for different folks and all that I guess. 
So it's not much of a stretch to realize that how you feel about the man's music is going to directly affect
your perception as to whether or not this is an enjoyable film.  I liked seeing the path Daniel Snith took to
being the musician he is today, and this doc did a great job of that.  My girlfriend questioned not only how
there could be a documentary on this man, but was it possible for there to be enough interesting material
to fill a full-length movie, and mostly she commented on how she didn't think it was humanly possible that
anyone could enjoy the music contained in the film.  So like I said, different strokes and all that.


Dan In Real Life (2007)
- 5.5 out of 10 -

It was interesting to me that the writers did such an excellent job portraying Steve Carrell as a complicated,
multi-faceted man...columnist, single dad, oddball, loner, whatever. And then they paired him with some of
the most boring, one-dimensional characters put to film in recent years. This isn't an awful film, just kinda
boring and typical outside of Carrell. At least the scenery was nice.



Danny Deckchair (2003)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -


This sweet, likeable Australian film is based on the true story of a crazy American dude (known as Lawnchair
Larry) who tied a bunch of helium weather balloons to a deck chair and ended up floating from San Pedro to
the Long Beach Airport and into the arms of the LAPD.  Where Larry ended up with some small legal issues
and a bunch of late night talkshow interest, in the film Danny floats his way out of a crappy relationship and into
the arms of a new lover.  At it's heart this film is basically a romantic comedy, but it's done so well that even a
leather hearted fool like myself found some joy in Danny getting the girl he wanted in the end.



Daredevil (2003)
- 2 out of 10 -

Dear god what an abomination.  Now I know why I put off watching it for so long; and if it hadn’t been
for the Mystery Science Theatre 3000 guys busting funny over it live as a part of SF Sketchfest and
I was watching it at home, I would have turned it off after 5 minutes.  The acting was godawful across
the board, the special effects were janky at best, the story was boring, and they used enough crane
and helicopter shots that if they were cut out of the film it would have been 30 minutes shorter.  The
only possible bright spot was Colin Farrell’s ham-job version of Bullseye – it wasn’t good per se, but
so goofy that it was pretty unintentionally funny.  This is easily the worst comic book adaptation since
the Dolph Lundgren version of The Punisher, and that is saying a lot.



Dark City (1998)
 - 7 out of 10 -
 
This flick plays like a poor man's version of a Terry Gilliam fantasy film, and it's never gotten the credit it
deserves for being pretty damn good in my opinion…even if Kiefer Sutherland for some reason can't act
to save his life here.  By far the best part of this feature was the set design, all mid-century architecture
and cars and manner of dress…it felt like a noir film that got swallowed by a sci-fi monster.  And that
creepy kid in the movie…he'll haunt my nightmares for years to come.  What the hell ever happened to
Rufus Sewell anyways, I thought he was going ot be the next big thing… 


The Dark Knight (2008)
- 7.5 out of 10 -

You know what you're getting here - amazing special effects, over the top acting (including the heralded
Heath Ledger "Joker"), great fight scenes, and all that jazz. It met my expectations in the "summer block-
buster" department, and honestly that's all I ask for in fare like this.



Darkness (2002)
- 3 out of 10 -

A horror thriller set in a creaky old house starring the always-cute Anna Paquin…honestly, this is all
I can remember about the film, other than that it was boring.  And it wasn’t even that long ago that I
watched it.  And so I’m sitting here, trying to think of anything to write about this stupid movie, but all
I can think of is how cute Anna Paquin is, and why in the hell did she ever agree to star in this, and
why isn’t she more popular?  Meh, just watch X-Men if you want to look at her, this mess of a horror
film isn’t even worth the trouble.


Darkon (2006)
- 3 out of 10 -

Nerds!  A bunch of goddamned nerds.


Dark Water (2002)
 - 5.5 out of 10 -

I was seeing the previews for the Jennifer Connelly remake of this film, and since they looked interesting
enough I figured I would go right to the source and check out the Japanese original.  Now I dunno how
the American version fared, and I can see why you might want to remake this film, but all told it wasn't a
very interesting movie.  Creepy, sure - one thing this new-era of Japanese horror directors and writers
have a lock on is creepy; but the plot was incredibly weak and given the storyline, you honestly never
end up caring what happens to any of the main characters.  It's certainly watchable if you are in a horror-
type of mood, better than the Grudge but not as good as the Ring, but really, nothing special.


Date Night (2010)
 - 7 out of 10 -

Now this is how you do a romcom - you amp up the ridiculous levels of com, and go super light on the rom. 
Steve Carell and Tina Fey make a fabulous (and believable) couple who spend a night in New York City to
spice up their rote married lifestyle.  Obviously, things don't go as planned, hijinks ensue, JB Smoove makes
an appearance, and Fey gets dressed up in a sexy costume.  James Franco and Mila Kunis have a nice
brief appearance as a methed out couple on the run from the same folks after Carell and fey. 



Dawn of the Dead (2004)
 - 7 out of 10 -

Having not seen the original in some time (I need to go back and re-watch it now though), I was eager to
check out this remake of Dawn of the Dead.  I’m usually against remakes with the exception of horror
movies; with the advancements in technology, it’s always interesting to see how they will portray evil in the
next installment.  There’s a reason that the staples of horror – zombies, werewolves, vampires, serial killers,
etc – keep reappearing.  It’s not the story in a horror flick that really makes things move, it’s the execution. 
And on that front, this remake has done a great job.

The general story here is the same as in the first version - survivors of a zombie-causing plague hole up in a
mall and try their best to survive both the continual assault of the zombies and each other.  The biggest diff-
erence between the two film is in the portrayal of the zombies – these are no longer the slow, lumbering oafs
you grew up with…now they run at you full force to get at your tender, delicious brains.  Actually, they never
once seem to be interested in eating brains at all, but rather just attacking anyone not one of them.  I’m not
going to get into the details of the film, because they’re really not necessary.  If you want to see a film with
some good horror-action and a bit of drama, look no further.  This is what escapism is all about.


The Day After (1983)
 - 4 out of 10 -

A made-for-TV movie about the pending nuclear war with Russia and the fallout from that war...you know,
back when everyone thought one country would attack the other any day now.  The film deals less with the
nuclear attack itself and more with the after effects of everyone slowly dying from radiation poisoning - very
uplifting material.  And if that's not enough to get you watching, know that you get to see Steve Guttenberg
slowly waste away.



The Day After Tomorrow (2004)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -

The world is coming to an end, everyone run for your lives!  This time, it looks like it's our negligence of the
environment causing the problems; global warming has caused a shift in the gulf strea min the Atlantic,
triggering the next ice age.  As you might expect, many people perish in various horrific fashions; others
struggle and survive, despite the odds; and the package is wrapped up in a nice pretty happy-ending pack-
age, just like you expected.  But the issue here isn't how the movie plays out necessarily, but rather how well
it's executed; and in the case of The Day After Tomorrow, that execution is fantastic.  The suspense was
pretty riveting, the actors were adequate without being distracting, and most importantly - the special effects
were top-notch.  It seemed so realistic you would think those horrific things occuring might be real if common
sense didn't tell you better.  I must admit, the sight of wellknown landmarks being destroyed my nature or
beasts in films pleases me every time; and this film delivers in spades.


Day of the Dead (1985)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -

I recently saw the remake of Dawn of the Dead, and enjoyed it very much.  This inevitably led me to want to
see what happens next, and that is the glorious Day of the Dead.  Since this came out in 1985, it is awe-
somely dated in the best way – cheesy synth music, bad hair styles, and atrocious clothing.  It pretty much
rules for that fact alone.

This film revolves around a group of soldiers and civilians holed up in what looks to be a cold war under-
ground bunker for surviving a nuclear bomb.  The soldiers are dumb and surly, the civilians are comprised
of some medical staff and a few strays, and the two groups hate each other.  Moreover, one of the medical
staff takes it upon himself to conduct experiments on the zombies ala Frankenstein/Re-animator.  In true
fashion, it takes a bunch of hack c-list actors to create a true gore film (yes, gore – it’s not horror because
at no point are you ever actually scared), and they do a fine job of hamming it up.  Especially the character
of Captain Rhodes – his seething, ignorant army man is one of my favorite horror acting jobs…he’s so easy
to hate it’s almost not fair.  If you like a good zombie movie, then you can’t do any better than one of George
Romero’s best inspirations – but then again, if you like a good zombie movie, you already knew that.


The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008)
- 4 out of 10 -

I guess the one positive from this film is that since Keanu Reeves is playing a space alien, his terrible,
wooden acting can be written off as just a space alien trait and not a lack of talent. Like nearly all sci-fi
films of this ilk that have come out the last few years, the filmmakers spent nearly all of their time con-
centrating on the special effects, and almost none of it trying to tell an engaging story.



Days of Thunder (1990)
- 6.5 out of 10 -

“Days of Thunder”, “To Die For” and “BMX Bandits” – the only three films Nicole Kidman has starred
in where I don’t want to climb through the TV and gouge out her eyes with a dull stick.  This film as a
whole is a totally ridiculous, overly serious Nascar action-drama that for some reason I’ve seen more
times than I can count, and I still enjoy it every time.  Don’t take that as an endorsement to see it though –
it’s a bad movie, but for some reason I’ve always enjoyed it for reasons I cannot fathom.  I hate Tom
Cruise, Nicole Kidman, and Nascar – maybe all that bad combines in just such a way that it comes
out as good?  Who knows, and it’s certainly not worth the brain power it takes to try and figure it out.


Dead and Breakfast (2004)
- 5 out of 10 -

The tagline for this flick is “Its like a bad horror movie, only worse.” - which is about as accurate a descrip-
tion as I could ever manage. It's a knowingly, intentionally bad horror movie ala Evil Dead 2 or 3, only
nowhere near as funny or effective. The problem is that when you intentionally make a horror movie cheesy,
you kill the joy found in horror movies that are unintentionally goofy and funny...the end result being a film
that is neither horror nor comedy. Lots of small roles from Hollywood B and C listers though, if that sort of
thing gets your blood boiling.



Dead Man's Shoes (2004)
- 7.5 out of 10 -

Is it wrong that all I could think of while watching this film was the cult classic “I Spit On Your Grave”? I guess
it only makes sense, both are tales of revenge where the injured party knocks off the offenders one by one.
This one is obviously a much less campy, more serious affair, and certainly the better film, but it could never
touch the place I have in my heart for “I Spit On Your Grave.” Paddy Considine is fantastic in the lead, both in
reference to his acting and his beard-growing (and he also wrote the story, a damn talented lout he is). This
might be a small, overlooked film, but it's well worth seeking out.


Dead Snow (2009)
 - 6 out of 10 -

So you say you like Nazi zombie horror movies filmed in Norwegian?  Well you've come to the right place! 
It's a pretty terrible flick, but luckily the film knows it and alternates between gore-porn and (probably) making
fun of the genre.  I mean, at one point someone is dangling off the side of a cliff using another persons intes-
tines like rope...quite the tensile strength those things have?  Must have been a high fiber diet. 



Deathbed (2002)
- 1 out of 10 -

I spent about 20 minutes on this film, but somehow it felt like hours.  Yes, they made a low-rent and poorly
acted movie about a bed.  A bed that kills people.  I'm going to go ahead and start writing my first screen-
play now, because if this can get made, anything is possible.



Death Hunt (1981)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -

Yaeh, like you could actually make a bad movie when you have Charles Bronson and Lee Marvin as your
leads...even if you were'nt trying at all, with their screen presence, they could just read the sunday circulars
and it would at least be mediocre viewing.  But this is a pretty damn good film, revolving around a loner
mountain man(Bronson) who intervenes in a dog fight and ends up accidentally killing a man; susequently,
the Canadian mounties (Marvin as the leader, and also featuring Carl "Action Jackson" Weathers) have to
go after him even though they know he's a good man.  Fantastic scenery abounds, a good story and acting,
and an ending that will satisfy most viewers.  You gotta love that Bronson and Marvin teamwork.


Deathwatch (2002)
 - 5 out of 10 -
 
I've always had a soft spot for anything WWI related - such a brutal war, the idea of trench warfare and the emer-
gence of chemical weapons really makes that conflict seem like the most dreadful of them all ( i.e., the most
interesting).  But despite my predisposition towards this type of film, this was still a rather dull outing.  It was part
war movie and part horror movie, only minus the action of war or the scares of horror.  There was a lot of yelling
and sitting around and rain and unhappy faces, but none of that translated into compelling cinema.  But I suppose
any modern WWI movie is better than nothing...hopefully someday it will really get a first class "Saving Private
Ryan" type of treatment with big name directors and superstars and the works, cause I'd love to see it. 


Death Wish (1974)
- 6.5 out of 10 -

Charles Bronson - has there ever been a film star who is both as creepy and as awesome as this man is? 
The Death Wish series is his obvious calling card, even if he was better The Magnificent Seven, The Dirty
Dozen, and a bunch of other great 60's and 70's actioneers.  Either way, in the 70's "vigilante justice" was
the hot topic, and this fit the bill perfectly.  Bronson plays an architect whose wife is killed by "street thugs"
and then decides to exact revenge on the ne'er-do-wells that cause trouble in the city.  And that's pretty
much it...there's a lot of skulking in the shadows, and moving music, and Bronson's hit percentage is nearly
perfect which is quite impressive.  Honestly, there's nothing special about this or really any of this series,
but I've seen worse.


December Boys (2007)
- 5 out of 10 -

Not a good movie, not a bad movie, but certainly a boring movie. It stars Harry Potter and three other kids
playing a group of orphans too old to be adopted, living in the Australian Outback and creating their own
family by sticking together. And then...actually, that's it. Not much else happens. Nice scenery I guess.


The Deep (1977)
- 5 out of 10 -

No matter how nice Jacqueline Bissett's boobs look in a wet t-shirt (and don't get me wrong, they look
amazing), that still doesn't make this scuba diving “thriller” any more er, thrilling. It's not a bad plot though,
lost treasure and all that shit; it might be one of the very few examples where an older film could be remade
and the new results be better than the original. Assuming they find a woman equally as hot as Bisset and
put her in the right kind of wet t-shirt.



Defiance (2008)
 - 7 out of 10 -

Hey, another WWII Nazi movie!  Eh, what am I complaining about, more often than not these flicks are high-
quality entertainment, and this one is no exception.  A true story, the basic plot being a group of Jews hide
out in a dense forest to keep from getting captured by the Nazis.  You can probably guess what happens -
everything runs smoothly for a while, then the location gets found, there is a big fight, and the good guys
(sorta) win.  Directed by Edward Zwick, the man knows quite well how to do gritty battle scenes (previous
work includes "Blood Diamond" and "Glory"); the acting is great also, with Daniel Craig and Liev Schreiber
holding down the fort. 


Defiance (1980)
 - 6 out of 10 -

Who knew that all it took to clean up the mean streets of New York City was a ship-working drifter and a
gang of has-beens that look more like a bad doo-wop group than ass kickers?  Oh Jan-Michael Vincent,
is there anything you can't do?  This movie is basically "High Noon" set in (what was) the modern day Big
Apple, good guys versus bad guys, a reluctant hero, all the typical plot lines...but it's fairly enjoyable,
despite my snarkiness.  Also worth noting - the film features a young Pauly Walnuts (Tony Sirico) as a
member of the "good" gang. 



The Defiant Ones (1958)
 - 8 out of 10 -

This film was legendary for it's time - the acting, the cinematography, and most importantly the story all
pushed boundries during a turbulent period.  And to add on top of that, the movie has completely stood
the test of the time, proving it is immensely entertaining nearly 50 years later.  there are few film perform-
ances on par with Tony Curtis and Sidney Poitier and their interplay in the role of escaped convicts
chained together (both physically and mentally).  Both were nominated for Oscars, though neither won
(each won "best actor" awards at the BAFTAs and other such shindigs).  Words sorta escape me on this
one, just know it's a hell of a film from start to finish.


Deja Vu (2006)
- 5.5 out of 10 -

It strikes me that this film was supposed to be just a run-of-the-mill CSI/detective flick, but then they
decided “we need a gimmick!” and threw in this strange time-traveling/surveillance mumbo-jumbo to
make it stand out from the pack. And I guess technically it did, as I've never seen a film about time-
jumping detectives, but different don't necessarily mean good. In this case, different means “meh”.


Delta Force (1986)
 - 5 out of 10 -

AMERICA!!!!!  I don't have any proof, but I'm pretty sure this movie is what Karl Rove and Dick Cheney
have based their entire world view on.  Chuck Norris should run for president and just show clips of this
movie when asked for his qualifications.



The Departed (2006)
- 9 out of 10 -

Now this is how you do a remake! It really goes to show how the choice of a quality director and a good
original story can actually guide a remake from the “pointless waste of time” category into “can't miss” terr-
itory. There are so many twists and turns and outstanding acting jobs going on in this film that it would be
impossible to summarize in this brief review, but suffice to say it fittingly won the Oscar for best picture of
2006 because there is no doubt in my mind that it was the best movie to come out last year.


Derailed (2005)
- 6 out of 10 -

Clive Owen tried and tried, but he couldn't quite pull this film over the hump from acceptable to good. It was
mostly the fault of the story – it was plainly obvious from act one that Jennifer Aniston was in on the scam,
the only question was who would die and how it would happen. There was a nice ominous tone to the flick,
and Vincent Cassel made for a fine villain, but the total package left something ot be desired.



Desperate Man Blues (2003)
 - 8 out of 10 -

Captivating documentary about Joe Bussard, an extremely passionate 78 record collector out of Maryland
who has as much personality as the rare wax he's spent his life hunting for.  It's a simple film, documenting
this mans life-encompasing hobby and his passion for rare classic country, blues and jazz - simple, but very
engrossing.  Any one who's ever had a passion for music will most likely find some joy here.



Detour (1945)
 - 6 out of 10 -

A classic film noir flick in reputation and certainly in style, but the story ain't much to speak of.  The print isn't
fantastic and neither is the acting, and the classic noir-ish twists and turns can be seen from a mile away,
but I guess it's still an entertaining flick.  And it's quite short, so it's not like you'll be out much time anyways.  



The Devil and Daniel Johnston (2005)
 - 8 out of 10 -
 
It's about damn time someone made a documentary on the fascinating creature that is Daniel Johnston.  This
film really does a damn fine job of taking you through the life of Dan - how his crazily religious upbringing has
affected him, the onset of his mental illness, his discovery as a musical and artistic genius, with boatloads of
interviews from friends, family and famous fans.  I've been a fan of Johnston's for some time, but this docu-
mentary is so well done that even those who have never heard of him will probably find themselves fascinated.   
 
Now if they would get around to that Wesley Willis documentary finally…


The Devil Came from Akasava (1971)
- 4 out of 10 -

This movie made absolutely no goddamn sense. Only thing I could draw from it was a lot of lurking around
tropical islands, old men having boring conversations, and plenty of overly drawn out scenes in nightclubs
that served no purpose. So why would I even give it a 4 out of 10? For one reason – Soledad Miranda gets
naked in this monstrosity A LOT, and she was indescribably hot back in those days. While I hope I never
see this movie again, if someone were to make a mix of all of her nude scenes that would certainly be
worth an additional viewing or two...



The Devil Came on Horseback (2007)
- 8 out of 10 -

I find myself immensely fascinated by any and all topics involving modern genocide in Africa. This doc-
umentary is one of many I've seen on the subject of Darfur and the indiscriminate killing and raping of the
niative folk happening there, and it's probably the most powerful of the bunch. It will make you hate any and
every person involved in this tragic fiasco, from the U.N.s lack of balls in intervening with the killing, China
for giving the country so much financial support, and most of all the government of Sudan for killing it's own
citizens. And what's worse, many years since the murders began still no one has done a damn thing to stop
it. It all makes you feel very small in the world, knowing you can do nothing to help, so you keep watching
and watching and hoping things change...


Diamonds and Rust (2001)
 - 6 out of 10 -

Even though there was nothing particularly special about this short documentary, I did learn something I
never knew before – diamonds can be mined from the surface of the bottom of the ocean by vacuums! 
I had no idea…I thought you had to go deep underground for those things.

They could have taken this doc in many different routes and made it much better, but instead they chose
to just give a glossed-over view of this crew of volatile men floating off of the east coast of Africa.  The
heads of the ship are mostly elitist prick South African and Israeli white men, and they treat the mostly
native African and Cuban workers like shit.  They should have spent the film documenting the class diff-
erence here, and what makes the ship’s captains hate them so, and they would have made me perfectly
happy.  Or they could have taken the more scientific route and really gotten into how the diamonds form
on the bottom of the ocean and the process of extracting them.



Die Hard (1988)
- 8.5 out of 10 -

Along with Lethal Weapon, you'd be hard-pressed to find a better mindless action movie made over the
last 20+ years. Bruce Willis is the perfect star for a vehicle like this, a smart-alec rogue cop full of cheesy
dialogue and unstoppable to any and all obstacles - you really believe he is like this. Sure, it seems pre-
posterous that someone would be yelling catch phrases when they ambush the enemy or fall off of
buildings, but for some reason in this movie it makes perfect sense. You never doubt for a moment that
he will stop all of the highly skilled kidnappers and save everyone in the end, but you keep watching be-
cause the route getting there is so entertaining. I don't know why filmmakers were so good at these types
of films in the eighties but have forgotten how to make them correctly in the 15 years since, but it's a little
depressing that watching this over and over beats seeing any of the new action flicks even once.


Dillinger (1973)
- 7 out of 10 -

This is classic seventies cinema – the look and feel of it, the cast (Warren Oates, Ben Johnson, Richard
Dreyfuss, Cloris Leachman, Geoffrey Lewis, Harry Dean Stanton), the direction...shit, even the credits.
Warren Oates as the hard-ass Dillinger is perfect casting, as he is one of the most hardass actors of any
generation. The plot plays out like you'd expect, with the prerequisite Hollywood flourishes over the true
story; but just because you know how the thing ends, ain't no reason not to enjoy this classic flick.



Dinner for Schmucks (2010)
 - 7 out of 10 -

This film didn't seem to be very well received from the critics, and probably even general public, but I
kinda liked it.  Sure, it's not a "good" movie, but there are a lot of really good characters that held my
attention, and a ton of slapstick...and I love me some slapstick.  Paul Rudd and Steve Carell make a nice
pair of buffoons and keep the hijinks going for most of the film, but the real reason to watch this one is for
the dinner scene in the final third of the flick.  The collection of weirdos and goofballs and their "talents" is
unparalleled in any film, and had me laughing out loud many times.  Well worth watching if you're in a goofy
mood and not expecting a masterpiece. 



Dirty Harry (1971)
- 7.5 out of 10 -

I went through a big Clint Eastwood spell in college and watched pretty much every film he’s been in
outside of a couple of older B movies from when he was first getting started and the musical Paint Your
Wagon, which I just can’t get up the nerve to sit through.  For a man who has released so many top notch
movies, this will always be the one he is best known for.  It’s not even close to his greatest work, but it’s
a damn enjoyable action romp that ignited a shitstorm of crappy followers who thought they could make
a vigilante cop film with just anyone.  This film is carried on the believability of Eastwood as the character
he plays – despite what you might actually know about his real life, it’s hard to imagine him not being a
shitkicker of some sort had he not become a silver screen icon.  Sure, the film may seem a bit dated now,
but the hacks out there are still trying to make this same movie today and I’d just as soon continue
watching the original.


Dirty Pretty Things (2005)
- 7 out of 10 -

You've got Audrey Tautou looking incredibly cute, you've got one of new favorite actors Chiwetel Ejiofor,
you've got mystery and suspense and a dab of illegal organ harvesting, but mostly you've got a good
movie. Given Stephen Frears' excellent track record of producing not just great films, but greatly under-
appreciated films, it shouldn't really come as any surprise that not only is this a great flick but it took me
six years to get around to watching it.



A Dirty Shame (2004)
- 4 out of 10 -

It is a dirty shame, a dirty shame that John Waters couldn’t do any better than this.  While I generally appre-
ciate his level of campiness, this was pretty awful even for him.  I’ve always liked his hang-ups on sexual
perversions and how he would include them in his films, but I’m not sure having an entire film revolve
around them is the way to go.  On the one hand, even a crappy John Waters film is going to be somewhat
of a good time, but I guess I was expecting more and was left feeling disappointed.



Dirty War (2004)
 - 7 out of 10 -

Set in London, this film is all about the preparation before and aftermath of the detonation of a dirty bomb
in the center of the city.  It views it not only from the point of view of the terrorists, but of the first-defense
firefighter and cops as well as the intelligence operatives trying to stop the terrorists before they carry out
their evil deed.  Now, something like this has never happened and we can always hope that it never does,
but this felt like a pretty realistic portrayal of how things would go down.  A radioactive bomb, set off in the
middle of a day in a high density population are and poorly prepared first responders equals chaos, and
that’s what you get with this movie.  It is kind of unnerving in knowing how possible it is for this type of story
to go from fiction to prophecy.


Dirty Work (1998)
- 8.5 out of 10 -

This may not be a great movie in the classic sense of good acting, quality direction and a substantive plot,
but it more than makes up for it with scene after scene of complete hilarity. Norm McDonald carries the film
with his dry wit, with Artie Lange, Chris Farley, Christopher McDonald, Jack Warden and Chevy Chase help-
ing out along the way. But the highlight of the film was the five minutes of Don Rickles, just going down the
line hurling insults at any and everything in his path. Every time I hear him call Artie Lange a baby gorilla
I nearly shit myself.


District 9 (2009)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -

A fantastic aliens-among-the-humans story that happens to double as a nice allegory for the way South
Africans are treating their actual "illegal aliens" (it was not about apartheid as some have suggested).  In
fact, many of the quotes/interviews used in the early part of the  mockumentary were actually about the real
illegal aliens but they sounded like the sort of things you'd say if you had actual aliens camped out in shanty
towns. 


Politics aside, it's a just damn fine scifi/action/thriller...the special effects are great (especially the alien
weapons), the alien ship looming overhead gives great ambiance, and the aliens feel so real and life-like
that you easily get engrossed in the picture.  Creepy looking fuckers though.



Do You Wanna Know A Secret? (2000)
 - 2 out of 10 -

I'll tell you what I want to know - I want to know who keeps making the decision to put Joey Lawrence in
horror films.  Or any films for that matter.  His acting career should have ended with him going out on top
as Blossom's brother. As for this film, a killer is trying to knock off a bunch of horny college kids - shocking
plot line I know.  



Dr. Chopper (2005)
 - 0 out of 10 -

Good god, the acting is so laughably bad in this it goes from bad to amusing to good, all the way back to
bad again.  Yes, it's that bad.  And as for the "special effects" - the film starts with a crazy doctor chopping
someones obviously plastic hand off, and then the blood spray from the cut entails someone obviously
throwing a coffee cup full of fake blood in the doctor's face...well,  it doesn't get much better from there.  
I'm pretty sure the only way anyone ponied money up for this in production was on a lost bet.


Dr. Giggles (1992)
- 3 out of 10 -

Sweet lord, I watched this on a whim the other night and it is one of the dumbest horror movies I've ever
seen. Not worst – I've seen a lot worse – but I may not have ever seen one quite so dumb. I can't even put
it into words really but, when the killer is played by the mentally challenged mail clerk from “L.A. Law”
(Larry Drake), and his calling card is the worst maniacal laugh of all time, you know you've got something
special on your hands.



Dodgeball (2004)
 - 7 out of 10 -

For some reason this film really reminded me of the movie idea I had back in college about a team of
rag-tag paraplegic homeless Vietnam vets winning a quilting bee…that is, the premise is totally ridiculous
but if the cast and the gags are funny, it’ll be good.  That pretty much sums this up; it’s an entirely stupid
film, about the owners of a crappy gym winning a dodgeball tournament to make sure the big, bad gym
doesn’t take them over.  Of course, they win, the guy gets the girl, happily ever after and all that; but what
really matters is that it is pretty funny.  Stephen Root is great as always, Vince Vaughn continues taking
this straight-man role to the bank, and Ben Stiller, although occasionally annoying, made me laugh plenty
here.  You want a brainless good time, this should suffice.



Dog Days (2001)
 - 4 out of 10 -

I had read some good reviews, and god knows I love a good story (or non-story) told in a disjointed
fashion (I'm looking in you direction, Slacker), but sometimes, it just doesn't work.

Set in austria, this picture basically follows a few disparate groups of people around during a heat wave
and shows what happens in their lives (which turns out ot be very little) over the course of a day.  Dog Days
felt like the antithesis of Gummo in many ways; many folks may have hated Gummo, but regardless of the
outcome anyone would have a tough time arguingthat the characters were uninteresting, the scenery boring,
or the film at all slow.  It is exactly these three facts that make Dog Days not worth watching.  The biggest
culprit in screwing things up was that the shots were painfully long, and this is coming from someone who
normallygoes gaga for long cuts in movies; I'm not one to tell someone how to change their movies, but a
little editing in this area would have made the flick immensely more watchable.  But it still wouldn't have
solved the fact that this film is full of characters you have no desire to care about and story lines that aren't
particularly interesting, but at least some editing would keep you from wasting so much time watching the
movie.  The few characters who are slightly interesting - the hitchhiker, the widower, and the sex adict -
even wear out their welcome by the time the movie is halfway over.  If the goal of the director was to make
you feel the crippling boredom that encompasses the character's lives in the film, then he certainly
accomplished that.

And my god, who would have thought the outskirts of Vienna could look so sterile and uninteresting?  It
just goes to show that suburbs are the pits the world over.



Dogville (2003)
 - 0 out of 10 -
I should pay more attention.  I knew it had Nicole Kidman in it, which was strike one.  But I loved
Breaking the Waves and Dancer in the Dark so I wanted to give Lars von Trier’s latest a benefit of
the doubt.  And I knew it was nearly 3 hours long, but I guess that’s what you expect out of the guy. 
But something better be pretty damn good if you’re going to waste 3 hours on it. What I didn’t know
is that it is a play.  Sure, it’s a DVD, but they just filmed the performance of a play.  I do not and never
have liked plays, they give me the heeby-jeebies just like clowns and horses.  I lasted about one
chapter into this before the ham-fisted acting had me take it out.  I’m sure there are folks out there
who love this, but it sure ain’t me.


Domino (2005)
 - 5 out of 10 -

Even though it might be based on a true story, the plot line in this film is as convoluted as a schizo-
phrenic's daydream.  And good god, give it a rest with the overblown exposures and color saturation
coupled with a lot of quick edits - it doesn't make the film any edgier, it just proves you really liked
Natural Born Killers.  But the one thing this movie does do right is casting.  Sure, Keira Knightley looks
crazy sexy as you would expect, but it's the supporting cast and depth thereof that really stands out -
Mickey Rourke, Delroy Lindo, Monique, Dabney Coleman, Christopher Walken...shit, it even had Brian
Austin Green and Ian Ziering starring as themselves!  And despite the films other shortcomings, there
is one fantastic scene involving an appearance on Jerry Springer that might make this shlock-fest
worth watching all by itself. 


Don't Come Knocking (2005)
 - 6 out of 10 -

Apparently this is a loose sequel to Wim Wender's "Paris, Texas", though I saw that so long ago I'd never
have been able to tell you that if I hadn't read it in the film write-up.  So god only knows how it works as a
continuation of those older story lines...what I do know is that as a stand-alone film it's not too bad.  A bit
pointless at times maybe, but that is nothing new with Wenders - he often seems to go for the visual over
the substantive story.  The cinematography is certainly excellent here (the casino scenes in Elko especially
stood out), but there is a just a little too much of Sam Shepard wandering around aimless and paranoid and
drunk and not enough actual resolution to call this a great film. 



Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead (1991)
 - 7 out of 10 -

Yeah, it might be stupid beyond belief, but I’ve always found this film immensely enjoyable; I still re-
member seeing it in the theatre, because my pubescent headbanger ass was in love with Christina
Applegate (just like pretty much every hetero young man during those early years of Married with
Children).  Nowadays, the film is still valuable as a fantastic period piece for identifying some of the
worst clothing and hair styles of the late 80s and early 90s, an extra layer on the film that makes it even
funnier than it ever was intended to be.  Also, David Duchovney has a small part playing a smarmy
business dude that is comedic at the highest levels. 

It was also right around this time that I got a waffle iron for Christmas, which I’m pretty sure I requested…
I can’t remember if this film played a role in that, but it seems reasonable given how many times I’ve
seen it.  I still never learned how to make Belgian waffles though…



Doom (2005)
 - 4 out of 10 -

It shouldn't have been tough to recreate the Doom game in movie form, especially with the Rock
involved and the original creators of Doom overseeing the project, but somehow they decided it
would be a better idea to make a really shitty recreation of Alien and not cast the Rock as the lead.  
Seriously why even bother calling this doom?  Outside of one small scene where they switched to
first person while attacking an alien creature, there was really nothing Doom-ish at all in this flick.  
Very disappointing.


The Doom Generation (1995)
- 4 out of 10 -

I understand this film is intentionally bad as some sort of “send up” of generation x, and sometimes
“intentionally bad” works to the movie's advantage...this isn't one of those cases. Outside of some in-
teresting guest appearances (Perry Ferrell, Heidi Fleiss) and Rose McGowan's boobs, there ain't much
worth seeing here. Though Rose's chest is a very very nice one...


Doubt (2008)
 - 6 out of 10 -

You got a movie about priests and kid diddling starring Philip Seymour Hoffman and Meryl Streep, and
it's pretty clear you're getting a strongly acted movie that is going to leave you nearly suicidally depressed
when it finishes.  And that it does.  Streep is so good at being  ball buster in so many different roles that
it's hard to believe she isn't actually like that in real life. 



Dreams To Remember: The Legacy of Otis Redding (2007)
- 6.5 out of 10 -

A rather poorly put together documentary on the life and times of Otis Redding, but the live footage
and his songs were so mesmerizing I couldn't turn it off. As one of the greatest singers in the history
of recorded music, the man really deserves much better treatment than this.



The Driver (1978)
- 5 out of 10 -

A seventies crime movie called “The Driver”...I'm guessing you can figure out the story line without much
trouble. Like many other films of the era, this one is characterized by some top notch chase/driving
scenes and a lot of mediocre acting/dialogue in between those scenes. It's a little difficult to accept Ryan
O'Neal as a tough guy ace driver when he looks like he should be the love interest of some cougar on a
soap opera, but that is the hand you're dealt here. I'd recommend this for the chase scenes alone, but
maybe have the remote in your hand to fast forward through the action-less acting sections...like a classic
porno, you just want to get to the good stuff.



The Dukes of Hazard (2005)
 - 5 out of 10 -


Ye gods, Tom Wopat must be rolling over in his grave right now.  I don't care if he isn't dead.  And where
the hell was Flash?  That dog was the best part of the show.  An Burt Reynolds as Boss Hogg?  I love The
Bandit, but that just isn't right - the Hogg is supposed to be fat.  Whatever, it was a fun movie I guess,
entirely and completely stupid, but fun.  And even though I've never been much of a Jessica Simpson fan,
she did look good in the flick.  Maybe worth watching if you are feeling entirely brain dead, or stuck on a
plane like I was, but otherwise...I still can't believe my beloved Broken Lizard dudes were involved in this
crap, I'm hoping it was just to raise money for their own films.  



Duplex (2003)
 - 3 out of 10 -

I lasted about 30 minutes into this film before I decided I'd rather do about anything else, even clean the
house, than finish it.  And I hate cleaning the house.

If there is anything good to say about this, at least the bad guy wins in the end.  Although in a perfect world
all parties involved in the story would have just fallen off of a cliff.  You'd have to be really, really, REALLY
bored to bother with this flick. 


Duplicity (2009)
 - 3 out of 10 -

I'm supposed to buy Julia Roberts as a super spy?  Seriously?  Hooker with a heart of gold, sure.  No-
nonsense mom who adopts a local troubled youth, no problem.  All those romcom characters she's played
that were all pretty much the same person, ok.  But a spy?  It's so improbable I turned the film off after a few
minutes. 



Eagle Vs. Shark (2007)
- 6 out of 10 -

This is what happens when a bunch of New Zealanders decide to make a romantic comedy filtered through
a pack of idiot characters not unlike those featured in "Napoleon Dynamite". It has a lot of the same deadpan
delivery, the same outdated clothing and hairstyles, the same "small towns have a lot of weirdos" vibe. I en-
joyed it though, lots of goofy/funny moments involving tracksuits, ninja weapons, animatronic apple cores,
and hats with seagull shit on them. And I'm totally adopting their "horse" game for my next road trip.



East of Havana (2006)
- 6.5 out of 10 -

This is a documentary on the growing youth movement of hip-hop in Havana, a somewhat interesting sub-
ject matter though quite secondary to the real reason I watched this, which was just to see Cuba from the
perspective of the poverty-stricken kids who were toiling through life in search of better things via music. The
music was fine, nothing special, obviously heavily influenced by the tunes they were hearing from radio
stations out of south Florida; what really kept me tuned in were the scenes of Cuba, mesmerizing in their
ability to get through life with so little resources. The deteriorating buildings, the classic cars and the ability
of the people to persevere always keep me fixated anytime Cuba is the topic at hand.



Eastern Promises (2007)
- 8 out of 10 -

I've been fascinated by the topic of Russian prison tattoos for a long time now, so placing this as a major
theme in a movie is automatically going to get my attention. Of course I had no idea of this going in –
I thought it was just a Russian gangster movie...which it mostly was, and a pretty damn good one at that.
Viggo Mortensen is absolutely brilliant here, easily one of the best performances of a very good year.
David Cronenberg has really hit a renaissance lately, as pretty much everything he has put out this decade
has been between good and great. It's gotten to the point now that I eagerly anticipate whatever new flick
he comes out with next, even if it doesn't involve Russian prison tattoos.


Easy A (2010)
 - 7 out of 10 - 

My love of Emma Stone (and particularly Emma Stone in the slutty outfits from this film) far outweigh my
love of this movie, but it's still a decent and funny enough flick, worth checking out.  It's a very "self aware"
teen flick, constantly name checking John Hughes films and "Say Anything" and the like, which leads to
the film itself having a very 80's/teen dramedy vibe.  The story in this film has been done a thousand times
(maybe most famously in "Can't Buy Me Love"), with the typical happy endings and all that, but no one
cares with a film like this.  It's fun, Emma Stone is super hot, and...I can't think of anything else to say
about it really.  Did I mention how attractive Emma Stone is?



Eaten Alive (1977)
- 6 out of 10 -

This is a god awful movie, but the camp factor is so high it actually makes the flick a reasonably enter-
taining bit of nonsense. You got Tobe Hooper as the writer and director, you got Robert Englund as one
of the main characters, you got a bunch of hot no-name girls taking off their shirts, and most importantly
you have a number of brutal & entertaining murders, mostly by either crocodile or scythe. The quality of
the film is quite poor (which makes sense considering this was presented as a “grindhouse”-type
feature on IFC), and I'm pretty sure the film stock used to film this was the worst available, but if you are
in the right frame of mind you'll probably have a good time this pile of schlock.



Ed Gein (2000)
 - 5 out of 10 -

I think I’ve mentioned before my fascination with stories about serial killers, but just in case I didn’t, let me tell
you – I find both the fact and fiction that surrounds serial killers to be quite engaging.  Ed Gein was probably
the creepiest serial killer of the last 50 years, inspiring in some part a number of classic films – Psycho, Texas
Chainsaw Massacre and Silence of the Lambs being the big three everyone mentions, plus god knows how
many B-horror movies.  He grew up the child of an extremely religious woman and never had any friends. 
After the death of his mother, he took to grave robbing and then eventually murder to create body suits of
human skin and a number of strange creations using human body parts.  He was only prosecuted for two
murders, but was suspected in a number more in the area.

So the problem with this film is obviously not the material – it speaks for itself.   Honestly, you’d have to try
really hard to make it uninteresting, and it seems like these folks gave it their best shot.  They took one of the
most intriguing stories on the past century and made it much duller than it should have been.  And while it
seemed to be fairly truthful in the facts, they failed to breathe any life into the actual telling of it.  I would prob-
ably only recommend this to folks who are particularly interested in this and other stories like it – there’s very
little chance it could hold the attention of anyone else.


An Education (2009)
 - 7 out of 10 -

A nice period movie about coming of age in 1960s England - well acted and put together and all that jazz. 
But to be perfectly honest, the film was most memorable for me because it was my introduction to the mes-
merizingly beautiful and enchanting Carey Mulligan.  Not only is she a fantastic and promising young actress,
but she is one of best looking women to grace my screen in quite some time.  A classic, timeless attractive-
ness that hopefully makes a lot more good movies.

  

El Bola (2000)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -
 
a fairly brilliant look at the subject of child abuse…nothing sensational here, just a very down-to-earth scenario
involving a controlling father, his son, and some family friends who try to do the right thing.  The acting is
superb across the board, as I’ve pretty much come to expect of Spanish cinema at this point.  While I’ve never
heard of the director Achero Manas before, I’ll certainly keep my eye open for more of his subtle, well-
executed vision.  This is a simple film that could easily be overlooked but packs quite a wallop when you
actually sit down and soak it in.


Electra Glide In Blue (1973)
- 6 out of 10 -

I've always felt like this cult classic was a “cop” version of “Easy Rider”. Robert Blake, best known as “Baretta”
and murderin', plays a short Napoleon-complexed motorcycle cop looking to move up in the ranks, but less
willing to go along with the more barbaric procedures of some of his fellow police officers. It's definitely a fun
movie, very much a product of it's times.


Elegy (2008)
 - 6 out of 10 -

This is basically a love story for smart people.  It involves college educated folks and NPR hosts and people
that write books and may/december romances and a lot of talking.  And most importantly, it involves getting
to see Penelope Cruz's breasts.  Like most films of this ilk, lots of good acting performances but not really
the sort of flick you can get excited about.



Elephant (1989)
 - 5 out of 10 -

This is a short film by Alan Clarke about mindless violence, and quite literally, that is all that it is.  No dialogue,
no plot, just scene after scene of people getting shot, all walks of life, for no apparent reason.  It's a great
idea, but I would imagine even the most patient moviegoer is going to get bored after a few minutes.  Gus
Van Zant's film by the same name was inspired by this short film, though he wrapped his mindless killing up
in a story.  This feels like an important film, but on a watchability scale it doesn't rank very high.



Elf (2003)
- 7.5 out of 10 -

I really like this movie - it manages to be wholesome and family-friendly and still very funny for adults, a task
that is accomplished about as often as a new pope gets installed.  This is 100% entirely due to the comedic
doofusry of Will Ferrell, who's physical, man-child moronic acting is so goddam retardedly funny I found
myself laughing out loud, and often.  The entire film he acts like a seven year old after inhaling a few dozen
pixie stix, with non-stop comical jibber-jabber.  The only real negative on the flick is that it drags during the
last 20 minutes or so, when they try to make it all smiley good-time happy endingville, but the rest of it is so
great, I'm willing to overlook that.

Also - even if the film was a boring, unwatchable mess, the fact that the incredibly adorable Zooey Deschanel
would have me stopping and watching this every time I saw it on.  She is a such a damn enchantress that if
this were the Middle Ages she'd probably be burned as a witch.



Elizabeth 1 (2006)
 - 3 out of 10 -

I tried, really I did, but with very few exceptions I just cannot get behind period costume dramas
set around this particular time no matter how strong the story or acting is.  There are exceptions,
with The Lion in Winter being the first to pop in my mind, but there has probably 2 dozen films turned
off early for each of those that I liked.  I made it through an hour before being both bored to tears and
creeped out by the outfits.  I’m sure this film will get great reviews across the bored, but great reviews
don’t reduce the willies this thing gave me.


Elizabethtown (2005)
 - 5.5 out of 10 -

Cameron Crowe is back again with another fluff masterpiece and a decent soundtrack. Man screws
up in life, goes home to bury his father, meets a cute girl along the way, and through family and friends
and a piece of ass figures out that screwing up a business deal doesn’t really matter much in the long
run. It’s a cute enough movie, and Kirsten Dunst certainly is fetching as the female lead, but like most
of Crowe’s films the story and characters are as shallow as a plastic kiddie pool.

I’ll give Crowe credit for one thing – he is great at getting paying acting gigs for good musicians. First
it was Mark Kozalek in Almost Famous, and now in this film My Morning Jacket serve as the cousin’s
backing band during the funeral when they play “Freebird”, and it rules.



Emperor of the North Pole (1973)
 - 8 out of 10 -

I'd never even heard of this movie!  Imagine, a depression-era film about hobos and train-hopping
starring Lee Marvin and Ernest Borgnine and it flew under my radar...that just ain't right.  

This film is about one thing - getting over on the man.  In this case, the man is Ernest Borgnine, who
plays the bull on the No. 19, a rickety old rail line barely holding together.  Borgnine has a particularly
mean streak running through him, and many a hobo trying to catch a free ride has ended up maimed
or dead from his tactics.  Lee Marvin plays the king of the hobos, and has taken it upon himself to ride
this train and prove that no bull can stop him.  From there on out it's an exciting game of cat-and-
mouse, and you can guess who comes out the victor.  But man is it a fun ride getting there.  

Highly recommended, if you can find it - I'm not sure if it's ever been released on video or dvd, I just
happened ot catch it on a movie channel one day.  The fact that every film by Borgnine and Marvin
aren't on dvd is appalling, much lessa vehicle starring both of them.  Get yer head out of yerass,
Hollywood...



Empire of the Sun (1987)
 - 10 out of 10 -

Given how much I love this movie, I don’t think any review I could write would do it justice.  So here
is a list of reasons that I think this movie rules:
1. Christian Bale…in one of his very first roles, as such a young kid, gives one of my favorite
performances ever captured on film.  He manages to pull off being a pompous brat of a kid and
drawing sympathy at the same time.
2. John Malkovich…as Bale’s “father figure”, he proves to be just as disappointing as his real father
but in different ways.  Fantastic acting job as well.
3. The story…when I first saw this, I knew nothing of the Japanese-Chinese wars that raged during
those years, and I still know very little.  But I find it all extremely fascinating.
4. The Cinematography…so many scenes come to mind; Jim getting separated from his parents,
the country club, the Japanese base, the trip to the former soccer stadium, the dropping of the
atomic bomb…really too many to name, that even as a small kid they made my jaw drop.
5. The direction…along with Schindler’s List and The Color Purple, I think these three films will be
his most enduring legacy as to what makes Spielberg such a great director.  The ability to give you
both the big picture and insight in to the individuals without getting caught up needlessly in the details
are his best traits.


Employee of the Month (2006)
- 5 out of 10 -

This film is exactly what you would expect – a cheesy romantic comedy featuring Jessica Simpson and
Dane
Cook. Everything you think will happen does happen, as if the damn thing were written by some
computer
algorithm. I saw this on an airplane so it was tolerable for that setting, but no a film worth
seeking out. The only
real bright spots were Andy Dick and Harland Williams providing some comic
relief on occasion.


Encounters at the End of the World (2007)
 - 7 out of 10 -

A documentary about Antarctica.  What sets this apart from some random show that you might see
on the National Geographic channel is it was directed by Werner Herzog, so it is a typical document-
ary with a side of insanity.  Not only does he narrate the film, but he goes around interviewing the various
scientists and workers, asking questions like "do penguins go insane?" and getting upset that there is
an ATM machine at U.S. base McMurdo.  The footage is very impressive, including a lot of time spent
diving under the ice and looking at the goofy creatures that could survive in such a land.  If you like
beautiful footage with a nutty German talking over it, you've found your flick.


End of Days (1999)
 - 5 out of 10 -

There is a lot of ridiculousness in this movie, but for some reason the part that gets me most riled up is
they named two of the main characters Jericho Cane and Bobby Chicago.  Gabriel Byrne as the devil
was actually a great casting choice, but if I'm depending on Arnie to save me from the apocalypse then
things aren't looking too good.  He hams his way through the flick in typical fashion but of course saves
the world in the end (even if he can't save California in real life). 



End of the Century (2003)
 - 9 out of 10 -

As I consider The Ramones one of the greatest pop bands of all time, it’s obvious that I went into this
film with preconceived notions as to how good the output would be.  The fact that it contains so much
live footage spanning their career would probably make this film a 7 alone, but the documentary/inter-
view aspect of the film is terrific as well.  You really get a feel for everyone’s personality – how shy
Joey was, what an ass Johnny was, and how cool/fucked up/entertaining Dee Dee was.  That they are
all gone at such a young age is a tough pill to swallow, but the legacy they have left behind will be re-
membered forever.  I really don’t know what else to say – it’s a fucking great film, highly entertaining,
and full of amazing music.  And long past due to such important members of the culture we know today.


The English Surgeon (2007)
 - 7 out of 10 -

This was kinda watched on a whim, but turns out this documentary about an English brain surgeon
volunteering his time in the Ukraine to help the less fortunate is an extremely interesting and moving tale. 
The protagonist Henry Marsh is well established in England, but gets the most joy in his life helping out
a fellow surgeon as they try and tackle the poor of Ukraine who have no money for proper health care. 
Often he is faced with patients who waited much too long to go to a doctor because of the expense, and
now are beyond repair.  It's heartbreaking to see so many folks facing a tough road of inoperable tumors
and drastically shortened life spans, but at the same time uplifting to see the good works one man can
manage.  A side note worth touching on - Warren Ellis of the Dirty Three provides an amazing score to
the documentary, with some help from Nick Cave I believe. 



Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (2004)
 - 8.5 out of 10 -

You know, I thought I understood what this scandal was all about before I saw this film, but it turns
out I had no idea the level of deception going on behind the scenes with these jackasses.  “Enron”
systematically uncovers abuse after abuse by the company’s top men, stuff so bad that I don’t
see how anyone can possibly defend what they did.  And more importantly, from a film standpoint,
the documentary was actually quite interesting to boot.  Well worth seeing, and prepare to get
pissed off, especially if you are a Californian.


Envy (2004)
 - 3 out of 10 -

I was going to say I can’t believe Barry Levinson is responsible for this dreck, but then again he’s
made plenty of crap so I shouldn’t be surprised (ahem…Sphere, Jimmy Hollywood, et al).  But he is
also responsible for the greatest TV show of all time – Homicide: Life on the Street, as well as one of
the best baseball movies of all time, The Natural – so I always want to give the guy a little leeway.  But
jesus, this movie is terrible.

The story is about the title – envy.  Jack Black’s character is an impossible dreamer, Ben Stiller’s
character is rooted in the real world, and they’re best friends.  Black invents this stuff that makes dog
crap disappear, Stiller gets jealous over his fame and fortune, and unfunny hijinks ensue.  The only
saving grace at all was Christopher Walken’s strange bum/stalker character, but it still wasn’t enough
to salvage this crap fest.  Avoid, avoid, avoid.

(As an aside – someone should really distill all of Walken’s bit parts in crappy movies down to a tape
of greatest hits – it would surely be one of the best things ever made.  I’m not kidding)


Equilibrium (2002)
 - 6 out of 10 -

My only guess as to why the fanboys didn’t latch on to this one is that they were too busy stroking the
ego of those suck-fest Matrix movies.  Although the two films are entirely different, and this one is much
better than those, they sorta occupy the same space in movie land, and Equilibrium suffered because
of it.  Don’t get me wrong – this is a pretty terrible movine, but it is enjoyable to watch and laugh at.  The
sets are pretty shoddy, the acting suspect, but the overall Fahrenheit 451-ness of the story keeps things
interesting.  There are plot holes you can drive a mack truck through and continuity issues, but someone
gets their face sliced off and that more than makes up for it.  Plus, if you are like my girlfriend getting to
see a buff Christian Bale on screen is always a treat.


Eragon (2006)
- 3 out of 10 -

“So, we're making this goofy movie about dragons...what should we name it? Oh I know, let's just replace
the first letter of dragon “d” with the next letter “e”...good enough.”


Actually, the movie was based on a book by the same name, so maybe the above dialog should instead
be applied to author Christopher Paolini. And none of this really matters when you get down to the basic
fact that this is a goofy ren-faire-type film full of bad acting and worse special effects. The saddest thing of
all is there were a number of quality actors attached to this (Jeremy Irons, Robert Carlyle, Djimon Hounsou,
John Malkovich), but since they had almost nothing to work with you can't expect much out of them.



Escape from New York (1981)
- 9 out of 10 -

Along with “Road Warrior”, I consider this THE defining film of the “post-apocalyptic” genre. There
are so many things right about this movie...Kurt Russell as one of best film badasses of all time, and
a supporting cast of Harry Dean Stanton, Ernest Borgnine, Isaac Hayes, Lee Van Cleef and Donald
Pleasence...what's not to love? The concept of walling off all of Manhattan and turning it into the
prominent maximum security prison of the U.S. Has got to be one of the best ideas of all time (that
almost definitely came at the hands of some quality drugs). As always, jack-of-all-trades John
Carpenter not only does a great job directing this flick, but he helped write it and create the score
as well. Carpenter has created numerous great films over the years, but for my money this one goes
down as his best.


Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
 - 6.5 out of 10 -

The beginning of the film was fine, and so was the end…but the middle, it just dragged and dragged. 
It seemed pretty obvious what was going on – his memory was being erased as he had signed up for,
he somehow subconsciously decided he didn’t want it to happen, and then he was battling to keep his
memories around.  It was a great idea, a neat concept, it was well executed, but it didn’t need to take
up the bulk of the film.

Other than that, pretty enjoyable – nice soundtrack, great cast (I always enjoy Mark Ruffalo in a film,
and Kate Winslet is terribly cute), well shot, nice special effects…I think my only real complaint is how
the film drags in the middle, because when I think back on it that’s the first thing that pops into my mind.

Have I mentioned that the major flaw of this film is how it goes on and on for the middle act of the film?

It did get me thinking though, as I’m sure it did most folks who saw it – would you erase painful or bad
memories if you had the opportunity?  My gut reaction is “no”, that those experiences are what made
you what you are.  But then again, I’ve never had anything particularly bad happen to me, so who knows
how I would feel in that situation?  It’s an interesting conundrum to be sure.


Europa Europa (1990)
 - 7 out of 10 -

Yes, another holocaust movie.  But an interesting and true story at work here - a young Jewish boy, his
family swept away in the tide of anti-semitism in Poland, somehow lies and finagles his way into the
German ranks and the Hitler Youth movement.  The film mostly revolves around the boy and his conflicting
feelings towards what he has found himself caught up in, and the battle of his guilt versus the desire for
self-preservation.  It’s a good flick, at least as good as most other holocaust-related titles that I’ve seen.



Even Dwarves Started Small (1970)
- 4 out of 10 -

I’m pretty sure I didn’t get out of this what Herzog wanted me to get out of this.  Mostly I just saw a poorly acted
film full of dwarves talking in German with no plot in sight.  I’m sure there was some message about the meek
inheriting the earth or god knows what that he was going for, but it was either over my head or poorly handled
cause it missed me entirely.  I would imagine that if you watched this film stoned though, it would probably be
the greatest movie ever.


Ever Since The World Ended (2001)
- 3 out of 10 -

Low-budget faux-documentary set in San Francisco about a group of survivors after an apocalyptic plague.
Great premise, but the result is really, really, really boring.



Everything Is Illuminated (2006)
- 8 out of 10 -

When I added this to my netflix cue I wasn’t expecting much; the previews presented it as a bit of a romp,
a guy on a quest for his ancestral homeland in eastern Europe with a ragtag group of goofy helpers.  And
for the first half of the film, this was a pretty fitting description – Elijah Wood is an uptight American seeking
the Jewish village his grandparents fled right before it was attacked by the Nazis during WWII.  He is
assisted on his quest by a guide and driver who claims to be blind so he can take his seeing-eye dog
Sammy Davis Jr. Jr. with him everywhere (though he can see fine), and also by that man’s grandson, a
b-boy played by Eugene Hutz of Gogol Bordello who serves as their translator.

Everything is going along fine, funny bits here and there, beautiful cinematography of the countryside, but
as the close in on their destination things get heavy.  Without getting too long-winded in the description,
there is nearly no one and nothing left of the village that once stood, but other discoveries are made by the
search party that transcend just finding a few buildings and old people living in the countryside.  And speak-
ing of the countryside, it is absolutely gorgeous in this flick, a trip I’ll be taking in the future for sure.


Evil Breed: The Legend of Samhain (2003)
- 3 out of 10 -

No, this isn't a documentary about Glenn Danzig's second band, though that would have been super rad.
No, this is a super low budget horror flick starring a bunch of famous porn stars and about two minutes
of Richard Grieco (which is more than enough of him for anybody). Given the cast, it was almost dis-
appointing how little “T&A” was in this thing – they're famous for fucking on screen for god's sake! They
shouldn't even have their shirts on! This goof-fest is barely over an hour long, but it's more than enough
inanity for anybody. I'm not even going to mention the story because I'm almost positive they wrote it as
they went along, while high and/or drunk.


The Exiles (1961)
 - 5 out of 10 -

A drama that feels kinda like a documentary about a group of Native Americans living in Los Angeles,
struggling to find their way in the world.  The acting ain't that great and the story is a bit forced, but as it's
filmed in black and white one night in LA, so you know visually it's going to hit the mark, and probably the
only real reason to watch the movie.   


Exit Through the Gift Shop (2010)
 - 8 out of 10 -

Easily one of my favorite movies of 2010, and I still don't have any idea if it's real or an elaborate hoax
put on by Banksy.  It's presumably a documentary about street art and it's artists, but really it's about
Thierry Guetta making a documentary about street art and artists and then "becoming" one himself,
and a very successful one at that.  The question is - is any of this legit?  Was Guetta created by Banksy,
either intentionally or unintentionally?  Was Guetta really making a documentary, or has the whole thing
been faked by Banksy from the very beginning?  I don't have any of these answers, and you don't either,
but it's a damn fun film to watch and then play the guessing game after you finish. 



The Exorcism of Emily Rose (2005)
 - 5.5 out of 10 -

I wasn't expecting much, and "not much" pretty well sums up the film.  For a horror flick, or what at least
presents itself as a horror flick...it isn't very  horrific.  I'll give it a bit of a thumbs up for the acting - Laura
Linney and Tom Wilkinson do decent jobs with the material they are given, which ain't much honestly.  
Not awful, but totally forgettable.  



The Exorcist: The Beginning (2004)
 - 3 out of 10 -
 
What a crap fest.  I'll say this – there was a pretty damn good battle at the end of the film between, I dunno,
the undead and the priests or local diggers or army or whatever…it was honestly the only time I could get
assed up to actually pay attention to what was happening on the screen.  Stellan Skarsgard tried doing a
decent job in his role but he wasn't given a lot to work with here.


Explicit Ills (2009)
 - 5 out of 10 -

I didn't even grasp the point of this movie until the last 10 minutes (healthcare reform?), and that's prob-
ably because there wasn't much going on than a meandering collection of character studies until then.  It
was still enjoyable enough to watch, all these intersecting lives, but mostly pointless.  Other than seeing
Rosario Dawson walking around in her underwear, nothing pointless about that at all. 



The Express (2008)
 - 6.5 out of 10 -

It seems like there have been a million of these "integrating sports in the 1960s" films, but that is probably
because they still ring true with a lot of people.  Outside of being a true story, nothing really stands out
about this tale of color and football, but that is not to say it is a bad film.  Rather, it's a nice story, well-
paced, and despite it's constant dips into Hollywood schmaltz it doesn't try to be more than it should be -
a sports movie with a message.  Not surprisingly, Dennis Quaid stars as the coach for the 4,652nd time
over the past ten or so years.


Extract (2009)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -

It's no "Office Space" but it's definitely a Mike Judge film and highly entertaining.  It still has his tone and
feel, dark and comical and though I've only seen it once it will no doubt improve upon repeated viewings. 
Judge's humor doesn't rely on beating you over the head with a joke but rather subtle inferences, and Jason
Bateman as the lead was pitch perfect as this is basically the role he has perfected.  Ben Affleck gives
probably his best performance since "Dazed and Confused" as the stones bartender friend of Batemans,
and I'm not sure words can express just hoe hot Mila Kunis has become. 



Extreme Ops (2002)
 - 0 out of 10 -

Seriously, I only watched five minutes of this and I feel like it shaved ten points off of my IQ. It's pretty much
one big, long Mountain Dew commercial. To the max! Ugh.


Eye See You (2002)
 - 3 out of 10 -

My god, what a terrible, senseless plot.  It bounces around like a Mexican jumping bean, introducing char-
acters with little back story, leaving about a million loose ends.  I expected a crappy serial killer/cop flick
from the start, but then when I saw actual talented actors (Jeffrey Wright, Courtney B. Vance, Kris
Kristofferson) in the flick my hopes got raised a little higher than they should have.  This film was clearly a
paycheck, and I'm sure they had to remind themselves of that each day after leaving the set. 



Face (1997)
- 5.5 out of 10 -

A run-of-the-mill British caper film, but unlike the popular Guy Ritchie escapades this flick is much more
dark than goofy, and a considerable bit more boring. Robert Carlyle stars here, and does a nice job,
though he ain't got much to work with.


Now that I think about it, I say this quite often with Robert Carlyle...either he has shit taste in scripts or he
isn't getting offered much good; either way, he is a quality actor that deserves much more meaty roles
than this.



Factotum (2005)
- 7 out of 10 -

Matt Dillon as Charles Bukowski – I don’t think I would have ever imagined this pairing, but I give him
his propers for at least giving it a shot.  First and foremost, Dillon is just too pretty – even scuzzed out
like he is in the film, he just can’t pull off the level of ugly that Bukowski achieved.  The story and the
way Bukowski’s book was used in the screenplay was done well, but at the same time there is just so
much in his book that you could have made the film 4 hours long and still not really done it justice. 
I guess what I’m trying to say is the film would probably seem pretty disjointed if you don’t know the
source material.  Still, when it’s all said and done I’d rather see a film based on the writings of
Bukowski than most other things in this world, even if it isn’t that great.



Failure to Launch (2006)
 - 4.5
out of 10 -

Here is what I know - Zooey Deschanel is insanely cute.  Matthew McConaughey seems like
a very cool dude that would be fun to hang out with.  And most importantly, Sarah Jessica
Parker looks like a horse, and an ugly, scary horse at that.  Also, you should know that this
movie is awful, but Zooey is on the screen just enough to keep the score from being too bad,
and the unintentional comedy of watching Terry Bradshaw act has to be worth something.  
Outside of that the film is just a terrible romantic comedy that unfolds exactly like you expect it
to...I know, we were all expecting something artistic and beautiful but you can't win them all.



Fakers (2004)
 - 4 out of 10 -

This is the British version of a popcorn film, only without the tasty butter that makes it go down so
easy.  For easiest comparison, think of a poor man’s Oceans 11 starring folks who are probably
popular across the pond but haven’t caught on over here.  This is basically a heist/con flick, full of
“witty banter” like the kids love nowadays.  There is nothing particularly interesting or exciting that
happens in the whole film really, but I suppose it is good to look at…well shot and pieced together
if nothing else.  Really, that’s all there is to it – if you want to see a boring but passable crime caper,
this is for you.


The Family Stone (2005)
- 5 out of 10 -

If you didn’t think Claire Danes was hot before, you certainly will after viewing a film that has the gall to try
and make you believe the she is the sister of that horseface Sarah Jessica Parker.  Outside of that harpy,
it wasn’t a terrible flick…dysfunctional family plus Christmas hijinks equals the occasional laugh, but a little
heavy on the sappy for my tastes (“Home for the Holidays” is a much better version of this basic premise,
only revolving around Thanksgiving instead of Xmas).


Fast & Furious (2009)
 - 4 out of 10 -

I like this trend of giving your sequels the same name as the original film, only without the articles.  It bas-
ically the same film as all the others, some "convoluted undercover cops infiltrating the racing underworld"
nonsense.  I suppose at this point you're not even trying to watch for the plot though, you're watching for
fast cars, over-produced races, and the occasional hot lady used as eye candy. 



Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)
- 10 out of 10 -

I can't possibly write a review for one of the greatest movies of all time, so I'll let this quote sum it up for
me: “The attitude dictates that you don't care whether she comes, stays, lays, or prays. I mean
whatever
happens, your toes are still tappin'. “



Fast Food Nation (2006)
- 6.5 out of 10 -

I wasn't entirely sure how they were going to make this book into a non-documentary movie, and
I mostly watched it out of curiosity. Perhaps it was my low expectations, but I found it to be a very inter-
esting and enjoyable flick, though a little heavy handed at times. My only hope is that at least some of
the small group of folks who watched this film actually took something from it in regards to factory farm-
ing and knowing where your food actually comes from. Though most likely, the only people who actually
paid any attention are the ones that knew what was happening before seeing this film.



Fear (1996)
- 3 out of 10 -

Fresh off the heels of his “Marky Mark & the Funky Bunch” album and some Calvin Klein underwear
modeling gigs, and we are supposed to buy Mark Wahlberg as a menacing clod? Oooookay then. It's
pretty much a stupid movie from start to finish, with the only real bright side being how hot Alyssa Milano
is in it.


Fear Strikes Out (1957)
 - 6 out of 10 -

I know it's the baseball fan in me talking, and would have been contrary to the who reason for making this
film, but it could have used a lot more baseball and a lot less melodrama.  Also, less of Karl Malden's nose
wouldn't have hurt either, that thing frightens me.  I mean yeah, it's the story of Jim Piersall, a middling player
from the 50s who suffered with mental illness...but I would have still liked more baseball.  It was good to see
Anthony Perkins acting insane in a role other than "Psycho" though, I'd hate for him to be pigeonholed. 


Fear X (2003)
- 5 out of 10 -

Um, well, uh...you know, some movies just don't leave you with anything to say. I really liked the “feel” of
this flick and the music by Brian Eno, but outside of that there just wasn't much of anything there. John
Turturro deserves better than this.



FearDotCom (2002)
 - 3 out of 10 -

Holy crap, this is a terrible movie.  Remember the Ring, where if you watched the video you died?  Well,
this is just like that, only they substituted a website for the video tape and there is no hot-ass Naomi
Watts to even look at.  Assholes.



Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)
- 10 out of 10 -

Shit, I don’t even know if it’s possible for me to review this movie, I’ve seen it so many damn times it numbers
into absurd levels…1000 viewings is probably a low estimate.  I seriously watched it nearly every single day
of a large chunk of my childhood.  My mom could even recite most of the lines in it.  So I guess you could say
I like this movie, and it shaped much of my childhood.  That’s about as reviewy as I can get on this one.



Festival Express (2003)
- 8 out of 10 -

Any excuse to make or watch a film with live Band footage is a-ok with me, and this documentary about a
Canadian train tour has plenty of it.  There was also a lot of Grateful Dead, but they were pretty tolerable
back then, not nearly as jammy or retarded as they turned out to be.  Guess the drugs hadn’t fully kicked in
yet.  The film also includes Buddy Guy and Janis Joplin in starring roles both on and off the stage.  All of this
footage is paired with some of the performers (the few who are still alive, but no Band members oddly) talk-
ing fondly about this tour, “waxing poetic” if you will about being a drunk & stoned musician in 1970.  All in
all pretty entertaining stuff here.


The Fighter (2010)
 - 8 out of 10 -

The story of Mickey Ward and his rise from the slums of Lowell, Massachusetts to boxing glory.  This movie
is all about the acting - Mark Wahlberg is great as Ward, the criminally-underrated Melissa Leo play's Ward's
mother, and Amy Adams is quite good as Ward's no-nonsense girlfriend who helps him get his life turned
round.  But the real treat is Christian Bale as Ward's crack addicted brother, the "Pride of Lowell", a washed
up boxer himself who almost made it and once fought Sugar Ray Leonard.  Bale has done plenty of great
acting in the past, but this is probably his greatest effort.  You believed he was a crackhead, a loser down on
his luck, not that it was just an actor portraying one.  Definitely one of the best films of 2010, and if Bale
doesn't get an Oscar the whole thing is rigged. 



The Final Destination (2009)
 - 3 out of 10 -

Nothing like a Hollywood "blockbuster" that looks as poorly made as a SciFi Channel original.  Awful special
effects, lots of cheap gimmickry for the purpose of it being in 3D, and acting straight from a high school play. 
Maybe I'll give them a point in their favor for having someone killed by both an escalator and a rock thrown
from a mower.



Final Destination 3 (2006)
- 2 out of 10 -

It's really not even worth the waste of energy to type out what a turd of a movie this is. But I do want to mention
that there is a scene where a horse goes crazy and kills a bunch of people – I'm pretty sure this was a docu-
mentary scene and not fiction. This is exactly the sort of behavior that comes natural to man's number one
enemy, the horse; watch your backs people, these horses will hesitate at nothing to end your life and that of
your loved ones.



Find Me Guilty (2006)
- 7.5 out of 10 -

Well you can color me a bright red shade of surprise, because I don't think I would have ever guessed in a
thousand years that Vin Diesel had the ability to act on the level he does in this film. I'm sure I'm not alone in
having written him off as a crappy action film star only, but this film showed me that there may be more to this
lunkhead than meets the eye. This is a great story to boot, a true story about a group of gangsters defending
themselves in the court battle of their lives. Much of the dialogue used in the film was taken directly from the
court transcripts, which makes the movie even more amazing because some of the courtroom scenes are
absolutely ridiculous. One of the better movies I've seen recently, which I don't think I ever expected to be
able to say about a vehicle starring Vin Diesel.


Firewall (2006)
 - 6
out of 10 -

I kept hoping that Harrison Ford would use the line made famous by Danny Glover in the Lethal Weapon
series - "I'm getting too old for this shit".  cause that was pretty much what I was thinking, watching him
run around like a much younger kid, saving his family and beating up the bad guys...when exactly does a
former action film star like himself get too old to be making these sorts of movies?  I guess I'm not the
one to decide the answer to that, but my opinion is it's time foe him to hang up this particular line of work,
not unlike how Woody Allen has seemed to have finally  figured out that he is no longer a viable romantic
lead in his films.  anyways, this flick is a very cookie cutter thriller/"save your family from the baddies"
action fare, but it's entertaining enough (especially for being an airline flick as this was for me).  But
enough with the action flicks Han Solo.



The Firm (1988)
 - 7 out of 10 -

I've always had a fascination with soccer hooligans, so an entire film about them is right up my alley.  Gary
Oldman leads the "firm" as they are called, as they battle other firms over who is "best boy".  There was a
lot of English slang that didn't make a ton of sense to me, and I never was 100% sure what team they pulled
for (though, as always, I'll just assume it was the Tottenham Hotspurs), but it still was a rather enjoyable take
on fanaticism, which mostly seemed to serve only the purpose of alleviating boredom of the firms otherwise
mundane existence. 


The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh (1979)
- 6 out of 10 -

Like with a bad porno, let's just pretend this film doesn't even have a story because honestly, it's so terrible
you have to wonder why they even bothered. No, the reason this film was made and the reason we all watch
it is for the basketball scenes, and more specifically, Dr. J. And that's fine really, cause there are a lot of
these scenes and they are damn entertaining.


F.I.S.T. (1978)
- 5 out of 10 -

The first film ever written by the infamous Joe Eszterhas, and also the only thing he's put out that isn't a
complete pile of steaming shit (only a small pile in this case). Sly Stallone as a union organizer and a ball
buster during the depression...that's believable enough I suppose. And the movie looked great, really
nailing the feel of the depression through both the costumes and the sets. But the movie itself...boring.
Just a heaping pile of boring, coupled with an awful acting job from Stallone...watchable if you've got
insonia late at night and nothing else is on.



Flags of Our Fathers (2006)
 - 6 out of 10 -

This is another of those war movies that coulda used more...war.  What it did have was fantastic and as
brutal as anything since "Saving Private Ryan", which in turn made the boring non-battle scenes that much
more ho-hum.  While I appreciate hearing the backstory of those that rose the flag on Iwo Jima and their
treatment as heroes, much, MUCH too much time was spent on this topic - either shortn the movie or
lengthen the battle scenes, but the way it is now it feels unbalanced to me.  Hopefully the second half of
the Clint Eastwood Iwo Jima tandem of films will stack up better.



Flightplan (2006)
- 2 out of 10 -

I feel we now have undeniable proof that Jodie Foster has a gambling problem, because the only way they
could have possibly gotten her to participate in this mess is because of a lost bet. This movie is just awful from
start to finish with absolutely no redeeming qualities. Well, there are no clowns or horses involved in the plot,
so I guess that is something.



The Fog (2005)
- 4 out of 10 -

Why they chose to remake this film into a modern schlock pop horror flick is beyond me. Maybe the pro-
ducers were bored, or it was on a dare, but it was pretty much useless from beginning to end. The only
reason it gets as high a rating as it does is because it at least looked kinda cool, especially the “Pirates
of the Carribean”-ish ghosts that were wrecking everyone on the island.


Food, Inc. (2008)
 - 6 out of 10 -

I feel like I've seen this same documentary a bunch of times - factory farming is bad, support small scale
farming, etc - but this does as nice a job as anyone at putting it all together in an informative and enter-
taining package.  Informative and entertaining, but still dreadfully depressing. 



Food of the Gods (1976)
- 5 out of 10 -

I was really torn on what number review to give this flick. In terms of quality filmmaking, zero is too high of
a score. But the camp factor and unintentional comedy is off the charts, one of the best “bad” movies I've
ever seen maybe.  The poorly designed/filmed giant animals were off the charts, with the giant rooster
easily the funniest...so obviously made of rubber, and poorly at that, I was nearly hyperventilating from
laughter watching it try to peck one of the actors to death. If only I'd seen this before halloween I'd never
have wanted for a costume idea.


The Foot Fist Way (2006)
- 6.5 out of 10 -

After seeing a number of Danny McBride's recent (amazing) performances, I decided to go back and
watch this first film of his. Done by him and a group of his friends, financed by credit cards, this was
his (or their attempt) to get ahead in the cut throat world of Hollywood. Looks like it was successful for
McBride at least, given his recent output; and if you've seen his performances in “Eastbound & Down”
or “Pineapple Express”, you have an understanding of McBride's sense of humor, which is overflowing
here. Seriously, a film about an idiotic small town tae kwan do instructor and his circle of brain-dead
friends...what is there not to like?



The Football Factory (2004)
- 5.5 out of 10 -

On the one hand, it's a film about football hooliganism, a subject I find extremely fascinating. On the other
hand, it wasn't even close to being dark enough for my liking...it felt like it might have been called “Disney
Presents: Soccer Thugs” or some such shit. It was entertaining, but nothing special. I'm still waiting on a
great modern treatment on hooliganism, and waiting, and waiting...



For Your Consideration (2006)
- 7 out of 10 -

I just rewatched Spinal Tap for the zillionth time over the weekend, and remembered I needed to write
a review of Christopher Guest’s latest comedy For Your Consideration.  Where this is a bit more of a
straight-forward comedy than the typical “mockumentary” we’ve come to expect from Guest, it still retains
much of the mockumentary feel by using fake journalists and television interviews to give it that first-person
interaction between the actors and the audience.  The cast featured are pretty much the same as they
always are in these films, and as such they are fantastic and hilarious with Fred Willard leading the way
in the laughs department as usual.  After the slight letdown of the overly serious A Mighty Wind, this movie
will have you laughing and wanting more.  It’s no Spinal Tap, but then again what is?


Forgetting Sara Marshall (2008)
- 7.5 out of 10 -

I heard this described as a “romantic comedy for men” and it's kinda tough to argue that isn't true. Though
the number of films described this way is limited, the most important difference between the male and the
female-version of “romcoms” are the ones aimed at dudes are actually funny, starring and written by
comedians generally, while the female-oriented ones put a lot more emphasis on the love story and include
a few pratfalls to ease the tension.


As for this film in particular, I really enjoyed it. It was damn funny, Mila Kunis is crazy hot, and you get to see
a lot of man dong, if that's your thing.



The Forgotten (2004)
 - 5 out of 10 -

It started out well enough, and seemed like it would work as a decent psychological thriller - -nothing
groundbreaking, but entertaining.  Plus, I’m always happy when Anthony Edwards is getting work not
to mention that dude from The Wire (aka Dominic West, aka “I still can’t believe this guy isn’t American
cause his accent is so damn good”).  But then things decided to get stupid and “supernatural” and
some mysterious force sucked Alfre Woodard out into space, which is generally frowned upon.  It just
seemed very unnecessary to me, when they could have easily made it more believable and creepier. 
I’m pretty sure it wasn’t supposed to be funny, but it got so retarded in the end that I was laughing out
loud. 


Fortress 2 (1999)
 - 2 out of 10 -

I'm not sure what is worse here - the story, the special effects, the acting, or Christopher Lambert's
"plastic surgery disaster" face...



48 Hrs. (1982)
 - 8 out of 10 -

This was not only Eddie Murphy’s first film, but he damn near made it his best…playing the smug con-
vict Reggie Love, the most unlikely partner ever to Nick Nolte’s Jack Gates.  Aren’t those perfect buddy
action film names?  Maybe that is the deciding factor in these things, good names for the characters. 
Anyways, as ridiculous as much of the film is, especially the bus chase scene, the characters of the two
leads are so strong and entertaining that you don’t even care.  If you then factor in James Remar as a
fantastic villain, you’ve got the makings of a classic.  Putting James Remar in about anything from this
era pretty much made it a classic now that I think about it.

As a side note, this movie was extra-interesting since it was filmed in San Francisco in the early 80’s, a
very different town than the one I know and love now.  Merely from a sociological study it was a great thing
to watch, and the enjoyable film that went along with it was just icing on the cake.



Forty Shades of Blue (2004)
 - 4 out of 10 -

Two words sum up this film: boring and creepy. I love a slow film but this was taking it too far…I’m
trying to think back at what actually transpires and nothing comes to mind.  Lots of brooding over
screwed up relationships and that’s about it.  The creepy comes from the Russian female lead whose
name escapes me, but she makes Tilda Swinton seem warm and inviting (she comes to mind because
there is a similarity in their looks). Rip Torn did a fine job and it was good to see Darren E. Burrows
from Northern Exposure getting a paid gig, it’s just too bad they couldn’t have been used in a better film.



The 40 Year Old Virgin (2005)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -

Judd Apatow is one of my heroes; I think I have a man-crush on his writing abilities.  First Freaks & Geeks,
then Undeclared, and now this film - it's a trifecta of greatness, full of characters you can relate to and really
want to root for without being manipulated in the typical hollywood way.  

You know what this movie is before going in - it's obviously about a 40 year old virgin, and the plot is going
to revolve around him getting laid, and of course it will happen in the end...but that's not the point - it's all
about the characters, their interactions, and all the comedy that comes from it.  Steve Carrell has set him-
self on track to be a leading funny man for the next few years with this vehicle, and hopefully it will also lead
to the fantastic Seth Rogen getting more gigs as well.  

Bear in mind, if you're thinking of taking your elderly grandparents to this movie - it's extremely dirty.  The
theatre we saw it in was almost empty except for a group of seniors and it made me embarassed a little
every time someone said something particularly raunchy.  But eventually I forgot all about them and just
laughed my ass off, hopefully they were doing the same.


Four Brothers (2005)
- 7 out of 10 -

This is a dumb action movie, and if you try to make any real sense out of it with all of the plot holes, continuity
issues, and assinine cliches you'll probably hurt your brain.  That said, it is a really fun dumb action movie. 
The movie is all about revenge - mom gets killed, and the sons want revenge...and the whole film is about
them looking for that revenge, and of course, getting it.  Sure, some bad things happen along the way but it's
to the lesser actors anyways so who cares right?

The most impressive thing about the film was the acting job of Andre 3000 from Outkast - at no point did I
think it was just another rapper acting.  He has a high level of charisma and charm and personality that I
would not be surprised ot see him catch on as a fairly sought after actor.  Time will tell on that one, but I'll be
looking forward to more work by him.


Fracture (2007)
- 7 out of 10 -

Fracture is “John Grisham lawyer suspense” meets a typical “Anthony Hopkins is smarter than everyone”
film; in theory this should be a pretty rote and boring flick, but Hopkins is so convincing
it actually works out to
being a pretty decent movie. This was due almost entirely to the interplay
between Hopkins and Ryan
Gosling, who work brilliantly together in a bit of legal cat-and-mouse.



Frantic (1988)
 - 6 out of 10 -

I remember enjoying this film as a kid, but then I rewatched it recently and didn’t much care for it at all. 
And then I remembered I was confusing this movie with that one where Harrison Ford goes Amish and
makes out with Kelly McGillis (which was called Witness now that I looked it up).

Anyways, not a terrible movie just boring to me.  The gist is that Ford and his wife come to Paris and his
wife mysteriously disappears from their hotel room.  Then he spends the whole movie looking for her,
and in the process runs into any number of characters. That’s pretty much it…a fitting title, cause it’s just
Ford running around frantically and yelling a lot at folks who don’t understand him (although a lot of the
French apparently speak very good English).  One of Roman Polanski’s worst films but even his worst
is better than most.


Freedomland (2006)
- 7 out of 10 -

I recorded this flick on a whim, figuring anything with Samuel L. Jackson and Julianne Moore would be at
least tolerable. Turns out, this is a well acted drama about a lost child and the search to find him, with the
requisite twists and turns to the story to keep things interesting. This flick is all about top-notch acting jobs,
not just from the already mentioned leads but from a quality supporting cast of Edie Falco, Clark Peters,
and the always-interesting William Forsythe (can't believe he hasn't played a major role in a Quintin
Tarentino film yet, he is the perfect character for one of his crazy stories). This is the sort of film that easy
to overlook, but quite rewarding if you give it a little of your time.



Friday Night Lights (2004)
 - 8 out of 10 -

I’ve gone on and on in a number of different venues as to my love of sports movies, and especially football
movies (a sport that I’m not even that interested in except when fictionalized).  That said, this is easily one
of the best football films that I’ve ever seen.  Yes, even better than Necessary Roughness.

Perhaps it’s just because I saw it fairly recently, but this feels very much like the dramatic recreation of the
documentary Year of the Bulls.  It seems to really do a great job of not just showing the glory of winning, but
the pain and hardship that it takes to get there.  More importantly, this is a film concerning high school foot-
ball in a town obsessed…this is the one shining moment in most of these kids lives, and everyone does
their best to let them know it.  Lucas Black and company do an amazing job of portraying young kids with
the weight of the world on their shoulders and expectations so high anything less than a state championship
is a disappointment.  Jay Hernandez is also in this film, marking his 4000th film where he’s playing a high-
schooler. And Billy Bob…look, he’s possibly my favorite actor, and one of the most diverse working today. 
This film only elevates that reputation in my book.  A fantastic film that even non-football fans could love.



Friday the 13th: Part VII (1988)
 - 4 out of 10 -

I would have loved to have had my ear in on the brainstorming session when they were trying decide how to
approach a seventh film in this series.  I can only imagine it was a joke when someone suggested dredging
Jason up from the bottom of the lake via telekinesis, but somehow wires got crossed and they ended up
actually making it happen.  It's sorta like they decided to infuse Firestarter with a regular Friday the 13th flick
and ended up with this monstrosity.  On the bright side, at least the acting is so terrible you'll always have a
good laugh.


The Front Page (1974)
- 6.5 out of 10 -

One of roughly 4,683 enjoyable buddy films where Jack Lemon and Walter Matthau co-starred. And this one
has the added distinction of being one of the last films directed by the film great Billy Wilder. Set in the 1920s,
this piece of popcorn is about the exploits and tomfoolery of a group of reporters the night before a public
hanging is to occur. While not truly a slapstick comedy, that doesn't keep hijinks from ensuing, some of which
result in laughs. Probably the highlight of the whole affair is the doomed criminal in the picture, played by great
(and greatly underrated) character actor Austin Pendleton. Not the sort of flick to get your egg whites in a froth
over, but if you happen upon it you could do much worse.


Frost/Nixon (2008)
 - 7 out of 10 -

Who would have thought a movie about an interview between a British television host and Tricky Dick
would be so damn interesting?  I went into this with the lowest of expectations, as Watergate and the
surrounding hubbub has never held much interest for me, but I'll be damned if I wasn't pretty much riveted
from start to finish.  It really comes down to the acting, as all of the main characters do fantastic jobs in their
roles...completely believable.  It's hard to argue with Sean Penn getting the best actor Oscar for his work in
"Milk", but had Frank Langella gotten it for his portrayal of Nixon it would not have been very surprising.



Frozen River (2008)
- 8 out of 10 -

At it's base the plot of this film is as old as the day is long - woman living the hard-luck life makes some
tough decisions trying to make herself a better life. But what makes this film really pop is unique setting -
in a small New York town that borders both Canada and the Mohawk reservation. While the movie may be
about smuggling, what it really seems to be addressing is the intersection of white and native cultures in a
modern age, and how the poor scrape to get by regardless of color. On top of all that, the acting is abso-
lutely stellar - both of the leads, Melissa Leo & Misty Upham, turn in Oscar-worthy performances (even if
only Leo actual received the nod).



Fubar (2002)
- 6 out of 10 -

This movie plays out like a live action “Beavis & Butthead” episode crossed with “Spinal Tap” and a little
“Strange Brew” tossed in. A mockumentary about some brain-dead, constantly drunk rockers approaching
middle age and dealing with a few life challenges along the way. Quite funny at times, but drags on a bit
long in places presumably for the sake of extended it to a full-length feature. It feels a bit like someone took
a couple of characters from “Heavy Metal Parking Lot” and decided to make a long documentary about
them.



Funny People (2009)
 - 7 out of 10 -

A movie about stand-up comedians that isn't really a comedy (in case you were wondering).  Most of the
reviews stated that the film was too long, and they were right - it could have easily been tightened up by 20
or 30 minutes.  But I still really enjoyed this look at how fame, life and death affects different people, as well
as the inside look into the world of stand-up comedy.  Everyone gives a good performance, and as always
it's nice to see Adam Sandler working in a non-idiotic film,as he is a better actor than he gets credit for. 


As somewhat of an aside, Aziz Ansari did some short films on funnyordie.com about his character Randy
from the film that are highly entertaining and well worth watching.



Futureworld (1976)
- 5 out of 10 -

I remember this being a lot better a kid...future world theme parks full of robot gunslingers and space
explorers and anything your heart could desire. But time has not been kind to this film (most especially in
regards to Peter Fonda's wardrobe) – the robots are laughable, the story is slow and boring, and despite
top billing Yul Brenner was hardly even in the damn thing. Blythe Danner was looking pretty cute though,
so at least the flick has got that going for it.



Gacy (2003)
 - 3 out of 10 -

Given Gacy's legacy of killing and clowning and creping, you'd think it would be tough to screw up a
movie on the guy...seems like the material would write itself.  But somehow, and I'm not sure how, they
made the killings boring, the victims unlikeable, and the only thing creepy at all was the recurring dis-
cussions of the maggot and bug infestation under the house where the bodies were buried.  In fact, the
only thing really of note here is the casting - the choice of Mark Holton, best known as Francis from Pee
Wee's Big Adventure, as Gacy is both disturbing and brilliant, even if the guy is an awful actor. 


Zach Galifianakis: Live at the Purple Onion (2006)
- 8.5 out of 10 -

It's quite simple – the man is a genius. I've seen him perform live a number of times and it's always the
funniest stand-up comedy I've ever seen. So obviously, a live video of him performing is going to be pretty
damn good. Sure, it's always better when you are there in person, but I still laughed out loud numerous
times sitting on my ass at home seeing him crack the funny. When claiming famous North Carolinians to
my friends (bragging about my home state as folks are prone to do) he is one of the first people I bring up,
and for plenty of good, funny reasons.



The Game Plan (2007)
- 3 out of 10 -

Were we supposed to think the kid in this flick was cute with her terrible, bratty behavior? This film is an
advertisement for birth control if there ever was one. No matter how charming and entertaining the Rock
might be, he couldn't even come close to making this anything resembling a quality movie.



Gangs of New York (2002)
 - 8 out of 10 -

This film is a brilliant, if somewhat over-dramatized portrait of a time in American history that isn't reported
on nearly enough.  No doubt there were liberties taken with the story, but there is so much to love that,
ultimately, who cares really?  My top 3 reasons that this movie rules:

1.  Daniel Day-Lewis - It probably doesn't even need to be mentioned that his acting in this is fuckin' amazing;
it's a description that fits everything he does, but the way he buried himself into the character of The Butcher
was highly impressive.  Plus, he had a nice 'stache as well.

2.  The gangs - since I've not read much on this period, I have no idea if those gangs actually existed or if
Scorcese and Co. made them up; but either way, they had me engrossed.

3.  Cameron Diaz doesn't fuck things up - Not only does she look fairly fetching in this, she also manages not
to act in her normally awful way, so congrats ot her on that.  



The Garden (2003)
- 5 out of 10 -

This could have been really interesting – a documentary on an illegal Palestinian male prostitute working the
streets of Tel Aviv in harmony with other Jewish hustlers and drug dealers.  All the parts were there, but some-
how it wasn’t mixed right and the package as a whole left me feeling…disinterested.  I’ll give it credit for
showing a side of Israel you never see, it just could have been done in a more interesting way…great
premise, poor execution.



Garden State (2004)
 - 6 out of 10 -

Seriously, what the hell?  Where did all the hype for this movie come from, and what was it based on?  By no
means terrible, and sure Natalie Portman was super cute in it, but it was a pretty insignificant film overall. 
The soundtrack got quite a bit of hype as well, I guess there were still about twelve people out there who
haven’t heard the Shins or the Postal Service when this came out.

I only saw this a couple of weeks ago and I barely remember what it was about.  The trials and tribulations of
an overmedicated well-to-do twenty something don’t usually make for the most engrossing stories.  But the
motorcycle that Zach Braff drives in the film is fucking great, so at least it’s got that going for it.


Gates of Heaven (1978)
- 10 out of 10 -

If I could just include a still photo of the son, rockin' out on his guitar into the valley over the pet cemetery, I think
that would pretty well suffice in explaining the awesomeness of this documentary. But alas, I can find no such
photo online, so you'll just have to use your imagination. And c'mon, think about it – is it even possible to make a
documentary about eccentric pet cemetery operators and owners of the animals interred there, and have it not
kick ass??? Highly doubtful.



The Getaway (1972)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -

Steve McQueen + Sam Peckinpah = You know this movie is going to be awesome before you even watch it. 
And just as you might expect from these two, the film has both car chases and violence for days...honestly,
you'd not have it any other way.  Peckinpah manages yet again to draw the viewer into pulling for one bad guy
over the other bad guys, but of course this isn't that difficult when the bad guy in question is someone is per-
petually hip and cool as Steve McQueen.  and if all of that weren't enough, you get the added bonus of a little
bit of Slim Pickens towards the end of the film.  Good times indeed.


Ghostbusters 2 (1989)
- 6.5 out of 10 -

Ghostbusters 2 is not a good movie, by the nostalgia portion of my brain keeps me from giving it a bad
score. That, and the Bobby Brown then song for the movie (as well as his cameo as a...doorman I
think?). Other than that, well...Bill Murray is funny as always and even as an adult I still wish I had their
car, but those are about the only positives I can think of.


Ghost Rider (2007)
- 2 out of 10 -

I used to absolutely love the Ghost Rider comic as a kid, but any excitement over a film based on those
stories was quickly dashed when I heard Nicholas Cage would be the star. But if I hadn't seen it with my
own eyes, I don't think I ever would have believed it was this awful. Some scenes were so bad they were
hilarious, and the sole reason this didn't get a zero.



Ghost Ship (2002)
 - 7 out of 10 -
 
I have a lot of questions about the goings-on in this film - loose ends, nonsense plot twists, the usual - but
from a gore/horror movie perspective, this film is so damn enjoyable that I'm willing to forgive most of that. 
It's probably just best to let the plot issues float by and concentrate on the fact that this movie contains one
of the greatest opening scenes ever put on celluloid - it essentially boils down to about 50-100 people
getting sliced in half all at once.  Totally brilliant in ever regard, the only down side is that with it being the
first thing you see, there's no way the rest of the film can live up to such a strong start.  Still, plenty of good
killings happen throughout the film, such good times that you overlook the nonsensical ending. 


The Ghost Writer (2010)
 - 8 out of 10 -

Say what you will about Roman Polanski being a child rapist, the man knows how to spin a good yarn. 
This one feels like an instant classic, a tale of conspiracies and cover-ups and double crossings and
general spy-related creeping around, all packaged inside of a story about a man (Ewan McGregor)
being brought in to ghost write the British Prime Minister's autobiography.  The setting is probably the
biggest star of the flick - a rainy, bleak island supposedly in New England but filmed in Denmark (what
with the extradition issues of the director and all)...it really sets the mood, managing to look beautifully
enticing and dreadfully boring at the same time.  Highly recommended.



The Ghosts of Abu Gharib (2007)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -
 
I’m pretty sure most sane folks didn’t need a documentary to tell them that the entire torture sit-
uation at Abu Gharib was insanely fucked up.  But this doc comes from a slightly different angle,
spending much of it’s time interviewing most of the soldiers who actually took part in the torture
pictured in the now-famous photographs.  The film did a really good job of showing how otherwise
good people can easily be convinced to do almost anything when they are just “following orders”
from superiors; obviously, the sort of person who voluntarily enlists in the military would probably
be especially susceptible to blindly following orders as it seems to be drilled in them from boot
camp on as a part of their training.  Not that any of this excuses their behavior, but understanding
why these things happen will only help prevent them from occurring again in the future. 


Ghosts of Cite Soleil (2006)
- 7.5 out of 10 -

This documentary is as confusing and interesting as Haiti itself...you've got love triangles, brothers
turning on brothers, government officials paying gangs to keep citizens from voting, rising hip-hop
stars, corruption as far as the eye can see on every side of things – honestly, you couldn't write a
story as crazy as this one. Only reality could be this fucked up, this hopeless, this saddening – and
this entertaining.


The Giant Spider Invasion (1975)
- 3 out of 10 -

You can only expect the Skipper from Gilligan's Island to do so much with material this bad. No
matter how much Alan Hale yucks it up, this is still an awful, awful film about giant spiders from
outer space attacking Iowa or some such bland place. Like anyone would care if Iowa was overrun
with giant spiders anyways...this might have been a documentary for all I know. It's not like anyone
lives there and could prove otherwise, right?

(Note - this was watched via MST3K, and it was one of their funnier outings IMO)


Gigantic: A Tale of Two Johns (2002)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -

There was a point, early in high school, when I thought this was about the coolest band around – clever
lyrics, goofy instrumentation, good times.  This was a brief period but I remember it fondly, the good
times I had with my friends at the time.  I honestly hadn’t thought about the band much since then, but
saw this documentary coming on Sundance and decided to give it a whirl.

I was quite impressed.  The film was very smartly put together, balanced between live footage, videos,
interviews with the Johns, with fans, with friends…all edited together well and never did it get particularly
slow or boring.  I would venture to guess that this could be found interesting to both newcomers and long-
time fans of the band.  If nothing else you have to impressed with the dedication these guys have for both
their music and their audience, it’s something not seen often enough in the music industry.


G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra (2009)
 - 5.5 out of 10 -

It may not have been a good movie, but it was a pretty exciting one.  I'm sure this was drastically colored
by the fact that I was completely engrossed in G.I. Joe for a large chunk of my childhood.  I still don't under-
stand why Chuckles, Tunnel Rat, the Fridge or Sergeant Slaughter never made an appearance.  But a
special thumbs up to the girl playing Scarlett, Rachel Nichols - she might be even hotter than I would
imagine a "real life" Scarlett should be. 



Gimme An 'F' (1984)
- 0 out of 10 -

A poorly made cheerleading movie set at a place called "Camp Beaver View"...you watch something
like this for one reason, and one reason only - gratuitous T & A. AND THERE WAS NONE!!! Just a
lot of shitty cheerleading and dancing and light hearted sexual innuendo. I feel cheated.



Ginger Snaps (2000)
 - 5 out 10 -

I give the folks in charge here credit for at least trying put a new spin on a classic horror story, but that
doesn’t mean it’s actually a good film.  At its basic essence this is a werewolf story, but it puts it in the
mold of a teen movie.  Imagine Freaks and Geeks crossed with Silver Bullet, only nowhere near as good
as that idea sounds.  Not much to really say or see here…some decent gore, bad acting, cute girls,
boring story, and not much else.



Girlhood (2003)
 - 4 out of 10 -

This film follows two young girls through the juvenile detention system, documenting as they try to get their
lives put together.  An engaging concept, and the reason I rented it, but it’s just not a good documentary. 
The stories aren’t that interesting, the filmmaking is bland, and most importantly – the girls themselves do
nothing to make you want to hope they get their lives together.  That probably makes me cold hearted, but
so be it – I just didn’t find them worthy of sympathy.  I think I should have probably watched Caged Heat
instead.


The Girl In Lover's Lane (1960)
 - 3 out of 10 -

Jack Elam alert!!!  Ol' crooked eyes really creeps up this crappy movie something fierce, and is the only
reason you should ever consider watching it.  Unless you're watching the Mystery Science Theater
version, wherein you will get laffs and Elam creeping.



The Girl on a Motorcycle (1968)
- 4 out of 10 -

The rating of this film is probably highly correlated to how many drugs you're on while watching it.  I was
sober, so it was a rambling mess with a hot chick and some occasional nice scenery (I guess the hot
chick could actually be considered nice scenery, so that may be redundant).  If you are on shrooms or
acid or some other halucinagen, you'll either be stoked on this or it will give you neverending nightmares. 
Either way, there seemed to be no story I could discern of, but then again I kinda spaced out the movie
was so boring.  All four of those stars are pretty much for looking at Marianne Faithfull in tight black
leather, the only redeeming quality.



Glengarry Glen Ross (1992)
 - 10 out of 10 -

I know this movie needs no defense, but I just wanted to give it a “shout out” if you will, because in my
opinion it is quite simply one of the greatest movies ever made.  I have never been in sales, I hope to
never be involved in sales, and I’d be remiss if I didn’t admit that this movie had a hand in those feelings. 
There are few examples in cinema where the dialogue is this ruthless, this cutting, and this entertaining
for an entire film…off the top of my head, only The Sweet Smell of Success can compare.  Even if they
had done nothing other than shit films in their career, this movie alone would have cemented both Al
Pacino and Jack Lemmon into legend status in my mind.  Luckily, both have given us many great films.

This is David Mamet’s crowning achievement, one which he will never be able to top.  That has to be a
depressing fact for him, as he must certainly realize it by now, but I’m grateful he made this film.  Inter-
estingly enough, this is one of the few films of his that doesn’t feature his terrible actress wife Rebecca
Pidgeon, if she had been in this it would have probably dropped the review a point automatically.



Glory Road (2006)
- 5.5 out of 10 -

As a historical drama this movie runs fast and loose with the truth; but as an enjoyable popcorn sports
flick, it’s fairly watchable.  The thing that bugged me most about this fact is the movie would have still
been fun to watch if they had filmed a much more historically accurate version.  About the only thing
that the film did do a great job on was John Voight’s impersonation of Kentucky coach Adolph Rupp,
and he wasn’t even in the film that much.  All of the young men playing the ball players did a decent
enough job I suppose, but all I really took away from this film is that Disney really knows how to schlock
up a great story with a bunch of unneeded schmaltz and half-truths in their screenplay.



Goin’ South (1978)
 - 8 out of 10 -

This was Jack’s 3rd film (out of four) that he directed, and by far the best of the bunch.  But you don’t
really care about that, do you?  You don’t watch a movie like this to see how Nicholson handled his
directing duties; you watch a movie like this to laugh.  And I certainly did, quite often actually.  This was
much funnier than I ever would have expected…I wish someone would have told me sooner, I wouldn’t
have put off watching it for so long just because the cover of the movie at the video store looks so dumb! 
Great play from the cast as a whole, and it features many great actors – Danny DeVito, John Belushi
and Christopher Lloyd being the most notable – but this is entirely Jack’s show when you get right down
to it.  His version of the “old west” surly drunken ne’er-do-well is classic and everyone should check it out.


Going Berserk (1983)
- 5.5 out of 10 -

This movie makes no goddamn sense. Something about an aerobics-based cult trying to hypnotize John
Candy into killing his future father-in-law, who is apparently some uptight senator. A lot of “occasionally funny
but mostly confusing” hijinks ensue, Eugene Levy lurks around in a funny moustache, and Dixie Carter
makes an appearance as the lead cultist (and sings one of the soundtrack songs to boot). It's a thoroughly
odd film from start to finish, and no doubt the result of a lot of illegal drugs.



Golden Ninja Warrior (1986)
- 5 out of 10 -

It's hard to put a number rating on this one, because it's quite possibly one of the worst movies ever made –
certainly the worst kung-fu film of all time. But at the same time, it's the kind of bad that is actually enjoyable
because you spend the film laughing your ass off at all the inanity. Awful fight scenes, dialogue that sounds
as if it's by the actors for the first time while they were filming, and some of the funniest ninja outfits (camo!)
that I've ever seen. If you're in the mood for a comically bad movie, you're not going to do much better than
this.


Gomorrah (2008)
 - 7 out of 10 -

A modern tale of Italian crime families.  It ain't pretty or romantic or "Godfather"-like at all.  It's lots of back-
stabbing and killing and drug peddling and feuding and the sort.  Really, one of the more depressing films
I've seen in a while because I get the feeling it's fairly representative of actual mob life.  This particular film
features five different story lines of people at different levels of the criminal organization - from the young
kid just starting out to young upstarts hoping to take over to middlemen caught between battles and even
some "white collar" crime.  The film is maybe a hair long and you will not feel good after watching, but still
recommended. 



Gone (2007)
- 4 out of 10 -

This flick is the United Nations of movies...a British couple being terrorized in the Australian Outback by
a psycho American. Even though it was fairly obvious where this was going from the beginning, it still
managed to be pretty creepy for the duration of the film. But it wasn't a good kind of creepy, and it wasn't
a particularly good film. It did make me want to rethink any possible future trips to the Outback though
(that also includes the steakhouse chain).



The Gong Show Movie (1980)
- 7 out of 10 -

You know that classic game show The Gong Show?  Well, this is it in movie form.  There’s a little bit of
footage of Chuck Barris acting between parts of the show, when he gets accosted on the streets by folks
wanting to show him their act, but mostly it is a compilation of the goofy acts from the show - like some sort of
“best of”.  If you loved the original show, you’ll probably really like this.  It’s not much of an actual film to speak
of, but it is still a good time.



Goodbye, Lenin! (2003)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -

As cliché and trite as it is to say, this movie is actually quite touching – essentially, it is about a family
doing everything in their power to make their mother happy.  Once a great supporter of the Eastern
Germany regime, the mother suffers a heart attack an slips into a coma, during which time the Berlin wall
falls and things change drastically in her beloved country.  When she awakes a few months later, the
doctors inform the family that any big surprises may kill her, so they go to great length to keep the truth from
her.

The lead up to the coma and the fall of the wall is a bit slow and not terribly engaging, but that all changes
once they have to start scrambling to keep their mother out of the know. Daniel Bruhl does an excellent
job as the son, producing fake telecasts and tracking down old food in an attempt to hide the truth (he also
looks like Jeff Tweedy, just so you know).  The movie just attains a great, warm feeling from this point
on, and you begin to feel how much this family loves one another.  Like I said, I know I sound hokey, but I
really enjoyed this film, and certainly recommend it.


Goodbye Solo (2008)
 - 7.5 out of 10 -

This is one of those films where I can't quite find the right words to describe why it is such a great movie. 
It's a sweet, touching and ultimately sad story, but not in a schmaltzy way.  The characters are fantastic
and the acting even better - it almost feels more like a play than a movie proper.  He's not done much
acting, but I would be greatly disappointed if Souleymane Sy Savane doesn't get a lot of great roles in the
future - he is one exceptionally talented man.  This was his first feature film, and his abilty would put most
seasoned vets to shame.  As an added bonus, the flick took place and was filmed here in North Carolina,
in Winston Salem and Blowing Rock, which might give the score a little home state bump.



Goodfellas (1990)
- 10 out of 10 -

I recently rewatched this masterpiece for the 1,358th time, and to my surprise I realized I’d never written
one of my crappy reviews about it.  And even more to the point, I realized I had no idea what to say about
it.  How do you review a film of this caliber, what can you say that hasn’t already been said?  It seems to
be widely considered to be one of the greatest films ever made, and it is certainly one of my favorites.

But ultimately, the greatness of this film always comes down to one thing - Joe Pesci describing the
painting his mom made:
“Oh I like this one... One dog goes one way, the other dog goes the other way, and this guy's sayin',
‘Whadda ya want from me?'”


The Good German (2007)
- 6 out of 10 -

George Clooney really outdid himself here, trying to pull off a modern “classic” film...the black and white
film, the characters, the...well, kinda slow, boring pace and not a completely interesting storyline. Not that
all classic films are slow and boring obviously, but more than nostalgia would have you believe. It was pretty
odd seeing Tobey McGuire play a heel, very much against the way he has been typecast over the years;
and the film did look good, but I can't really think of much else to talk about here.


Good Hair (2009)
 - 7 out of 10 -

Not the greatest documentary I've ever seen, but if a movie about black people's hair and weaves and hair
competitions kept me engaged and laughing for an hour and a half, that's gotta count as a huge success. 
Not surprisingly, Chris Rock makes a great "host" for the movie, interviewing people and cracking wise on
anything and everything.  I really found all of the details on what actually makes up various hair products and
the cost/manufacturing of weaves fascinating.  And the entire Bronner Brothers competition...truly, I never
knew anything this strange and alien existed on our planet. 



Good Husband, Dear Son (2001)
 - 9 out of 10 -

This short documentary contains the true stories of folks who survived the Serbian forces who ransacked
their small Muslim town, stories of what it was like and how they survived the attack and continue to sur-
vive in the aftermath.  Most of the film revolves around the lost sons, fathers, and husbands, as 80% of the
males in the town were systematically killed by the intruding Serbs.  The stories you hear from the surviving
widows, daughters and mothers both celebrate their loved ones lives and lament their deaths in the same
breath, and they are really and truly quite moving and heartbreaking.

My initial thought after finishing this documentary was that it was much too short – so interesting and so
moving the entire film.  But at the same time, it was almost too much to take in, to process…certainly
though, this film has stuck with me for a while after I saw it, something I can’t say too often, its thoughts and
images popping into my head from time to time.  And after all, can you hope for more than this if you are a
filmmaker?


The Good Shepard (2006)
- 5 out of 10 -

Sooooo looooong. And unnecessarily so, sadly enough. It's an interesting story, well acted all around (with an
especially good performance from the lead Matt Damon), and it looks fantastic, but it's just put together all wrong.
Robert DeNiro may be one of the greatest actors of all time, but his directing skills still need a bit of polishing up.
It just felt as if there were a lot of loose ends and obsolete paths taken en route to the finish, and no shortage of
pointless information introduced that added nothing to the overall story line. It was one of those films that was just
slow enough to make you consider turning it off, but just interesting enough to keep you from actually doing it.


The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard (2009)
 - 6.5 out of 10 -

Yet another of the Will Ferrell-related movies that is a complete silly mess that doesn't make for the best "film",
but has a lot of funny scenes.  Jeremy Piven does his overly pompous yelling thing he perfected on "entourage",
David Koechner plays the same character he always plays, and the rest of the cast play their roles.  The high-
lights were Rob Riggle playing a 10 year old with a gland problem, Will Ferrell having issues with a dildo, and
Craig Robinson playing a character named "DJ Request" who will play the opposite of what anyone requests. 
Also, Wendie Malick has a small role and I cannot believe she is almost 60 years old and is still crazy hot. 



Gotham Fish Tales (2003)
 - 6.5 out of 10 -

I am not and never have been a fisherman, and that’s all this film is about…but I still found it fairly interesting. 
This is a very feel-good, fluff-piece type of documentary, showing a wide cross-section of folks across all of
the boroughs and how they finish in the environs of the big city.  In a lot of ways, it’s like a documentary mix
tape, one film made of a number of smaller tales spliced together.  Like any mix tape, some parts are good
and some are boring, and that pretty well describes the film.  It’s not very long, and has enough interesting
parts spread around that it makes it a fairly watchable feature.



Gothika (2003)
 - 3 out of 10 -

I’ll be honest – I’ll give nearly any film that Halle Berry is in a shot, because she’s just too damn hot not to. 
But for every Monster’s Ball, you get dreck like Gothika – overwrought, poorly written, and just plain
boring.  It’s a thriller in the “are things really the way they are?” style, but I found out pretty quickly into the
film that I didn’t even care.  And worse yet, since she was playing a crazy person, you couldn’t even fall
back on just enjoying looking at her…so why keep watching?

The only reason I even made it half-way through the film is due to the cinematography/set design/general
look of the picture.  With this they did a great job, and just made me wonder if they had put half that much
effort into the script this might have been a decent picture.



Gozu (2003)
- 5 out of 10 -

In theory, I love Takashi Miike’s films – always so creative and original – but sometimes, and I don’t know
why, I find myself spacing out while watching his movies.  This film, a mob movie blended with a ghost story,
has all the makings of something that would be right up my alley, but I just couldn’t get into it.  It was a bit
slow, and maybe this was the biggest problem, it didn’t engage me quick enough – but that’s probably more
my fault than the films.  Visually though, very stimulating, and worth checking out if you already like his work.


Gran Torino (2008)
 - 7 out of 10 -

What was looking like a crotchety old man movie turned awesome pretty quick, and is proof positive that
even at nearly 80 years old, Clint Eastwood is still one of the biggest badasses in Hollywood.  This film is
east meets west, old meets young, old school meets new school, all occurring within the melting pot of Detroit. 
I suspect the ending of this film would have turned out very differently if Eastwood made this 25 years ago, but
like "Unforgiven" he paints himself in a very realistic light as a crotchety old man set in his ways who is most
likely "too old for this shit", to borrow a line from "Lethal Weapon".  Very enjoyable flick.



Grandma's Boy (2006)
- 7 out of 10 -

There haven't been many movies put out as proudly dumb as this one, and damned enjoyable because of it.
Produced by Adam Sandler and starring a shit-ton of his friends (All those dudes with minor parts that appear
in everything he does), this flick makes the likes of Billy Madison and The Waterboy look like Shakespeare in
comparison. Any film that has Nick Swardson losing his virginity to a senior citizen is pretty much a movie
made just for me.


The Gray Man (2007)
 - 5 out of 10 -

Maybe it's just me, but I was expecting a movie about legendary serial killer Albert Fish to have a lot more...
killing.  They were going for more of a psychological thriller I guess, but a low budget film about a man known
for raping, killing and eating children needed a lot more gore and a lot less examination by others as to why.



The Great Raid (2005)
 - 5.5 out of 10 -

It's almost admirable how boring they managed to make this film about the rescue of U.S. POWs during
WWII.  On paper (and according to the brief blurb that got me watching this in the first place), this should have
been a pretty exciting flick; interesting story, good cast, nice setting.  But something didn't translate - the film
is very flat, and it feels as if all but the last 20 minutes is a bunch of different dudes (good guys, enemy, POWs,
whoever) sitting around, shooting the shit, and not accomplishing much of anything.  The film does end on a
high note though, with the raid to save the prisoners finally getting underway.  With a little fine-tuning you could
turn this into a really good film from start to finish, because the base elements are high quality. 


Green Street Hooligans (2005)
- 7 out of 10 -

I would imagine it all comes down to the novelty of the situation, being a "yank" and all, but I'm a real
sucker for any book or movie that deals with soccer hooliganism. Even a mediocre film like this one is
much more enjoyable when it involves group chants about mediocre football teams and people throwing
bricks at each other. Possibly the best part of the whole affair was the adorable Charlie Hunnam playing
one of the biggest badasses in the "firm", which is about as believable as a man-eating My Little Pony.



Grey Gardens (1975)
 - 9 out of 10 -

At first I found this film to be confusing, the way the two subjects  - mother Edith and daughter Edie – talk
over one another constantly, mumble, drift off, and generally make no sense. I’m fairly simple minded, so
don’t act surprised that I was confused.  Anyways, after you watch for a few minutes, the dynamics between
this pair eventually pan out and it all starts making sense, or at least as much sense as this lot can possibly
make.  It made me think of jazz music, and how it can sound like chaos when you first hear it sometimes,
but then a note strikes you just *so* and all of the sudden it makes sense. This is cinema verite at its finest –
it lets the subjects tell the story themselves, with very little input from the filmmakers outside of the final edit.

And the subjects are fascinating.  These two ladies reside in a rotting mansion in the Hamptons in Long Island,
like some long lost remnants of decades past.  The house is a mess, infested with raccoons and fleas and full
of cats, certainly not what you expect from the aunt and cousin of Jacqueline Kennedy.  They live in their own
strange world, totally cut off from most of society, and seem to entertain themselves with song and remem-
brances of days past.  What starts out as a mess, leaves you upset by the end that it’s all over - truly and com-
pletely fascinating.



Grind (2003)
 - 3 out of 10 -

I know it was before the popularity of the OC, but I still can’t believe Adam Brody made this movie.  More-
over, I can’t believe the guest stars, of whom there were plenty of good ones (Stephen Root, Randy Quaid,
Bobcat Goldthwait, and Dave Foley just to name a few) ever went along with it either…I’m guessing someone
lost a bet and this was the payoff.  Perhaps I’m especially sensitive because I’ve skateboarded forever, but I
don’t know how they could have gotten so much wrong.  The story is basic road trip fare, where a group of
ragtag friends have some mission in mind (in this case, sponsorship) and hit the road in search of it.  And I
know it’s hard to believe, but…hijinks ensue, often times revolving around sexual innuendo and butt humor. 
I like all of these things as much as the next guy, but you have gotta do it right and do it funny, and this film
has neither.


Grindhouse: Death Proof (2007)
- 7 out of 10 -

Quentin Tarantino was definitely emphasizing style over substance with this half of the “Grindhouse”
feature, but shit, sometimes that ain't a bad thing...especially if the style is top-notch. The cars, the clothes,
and the girls are all candy for the eyes, and a pretty damn good recreation of the drive-in B-movie of the
past. In those classic flicks, the story was never as important as what your eyes were seeing, and given
that Tarantino was emulating this style I won't bother to critique the swiss cheese storyline. My only beef,
if I had to give one, is the ending...
Surely I wasn't the only person pulling for Kurt Russell and not the bitchy
actresses at the end of this?


Grindhouse: Planet Terror (2007)
- 8 out of 10 -

Planet Terror definitely gets my nod as the superior film in the Grindhouse set – a zombie movie starring
a hot chick with a gun for a leg? Sign me up! It's campy, intentionally filmed pretty poorly, and the plot is
beyond ridiculous, which is exactly what makes it so damn enjoyable. This is not a film to be analyze,
it's a film to be viewed with the brain in the “off” position. Unless you hate fun you won't be disappointed.


Grizzly Man (2005)
 - 6.5 out of 10 -

A little long, but this documentary on a completely cracked man with positive ambitions makes
for a good viewing.  Timothy Treadwell loves animals, and through his bizarre actions and incessant
ranting he lets you know it.  He spends every summer for over a decade camped out in high-traffic
Grizzly Bear areas, and attempts to interact with them on a personal level.  He's obviously mad as a
loon, but it lends itself to some interesting confrontations and a lot of "oh shit he's going to get his ass
handed to him" moments.  Which does in fact happen, as he and his girlfriend eventually get eaten by
some surly old bear, but the fact that it takes as long as it does considering how close he is getting to
these enormous animals...it's astounding ot say the least.  I could have done without all of his rants,
and there are a lot of them - I think you get the point pretty quickly as to the mental state he is operating
in.  Most certainly worth a watch, if for no other reason than the animal scenes alone.  Anyone who
grew up watching Marty Stouffer will appreciate it.  



Groundhog Day (1993)
 - 10 out of 10 -

What can you say about Groundhog Day that everyone doesn't already know?  Quite simply it is probably
the greatest comedy to come out in the 1990's, and that's no small feat.  And it might possibly be the best
movie Bill Murray has ever put out, with Stripes and Caddyshack being the only real contenders (although
I don't really think of Caddyshack as a Bill Murray movie really, his part isn't very large even if he is hilarious
in every second of screen time he gets).  More importantly, it also features my hero Chris Elliott in a rather
boring role and even makes Andie MacDowell tolerable. 


The Ground Truth (2006)
- 7 out of 10 -

Straight from the soldiers mouths, this documentary features tale after tale from those fighting in Iraq
speaking on how ridiculous and unnecessary this war is. Of course, it's the sort of film where if you agree
with the opinions at hand you'll probably really enjoy (and be angered by) what you see, and if you are
inexplicably for the war then you'll just write it off as another “loony left wing liberal stunt to aid and comfort
the terrorists” or some such bullshit. I think it's pretty obvious where I lie on this matter, and I found the flick
very interesting and sad.


The Grudge (2004)
- 4.5 out of 10 -

I wasn't expecting a whole lot out of this, and that's exactly what I got - not a whole lot.  Sarah Michelle Gellar
is pretty useless as she is most of the time, the story jumps around with no regard for making sense, and
worst of all - there is absolutely nothing scary about the movie, the one thing I was hoping they would get
right.  Lots of cheap thrills where things jump out at you, but that's not what makes something scary, and is
rather the crutch modern horror filmmakers have been leaning on far too much lately.  Pair that nonsense
with a genuinely creepy story and you might have something.


The Grudge 2 (2005)
- 5 out of 10 -

This was better than I expected...that is to say, I expected awful and I got mediocre. Everything about it is
the standard fare of the Japanese remake horror films that have come out over the last few years...lots of
weird stop-motion ghosts, tons of tiny dead-behind-the-eyes children creeping around, and a lot of scream-
ing girls. You could do better, and you could do worse.



The Guardian (2006)
- 6 out of 10 -

I wasn’t sure if this was a feature film or a promotional video to get kids to join the Coast Guard, as at
least 3/4ths of it is documenting the process of training “rescue swimmers”, which is apparently the Coast
Guard’s version of a seal or a green beret or whatever other specialized armed forces group you want to
reference.  The story that pops up now and again is exactly what you would expect – grizzled veteran versus
the cocky young upstart, and a constant battle to earn each others’ respect.  None of this should have been
appealing to me in the least, but it actually wasn’t that terrible of a film, as far as popcorn flicks go.  Would
I recommend it?  No, not really, but if you catch it on cable one night you could probably do worse.


A Guide To Recognizing Your Saints (2006)
- 6.5 out of 10 -

Say what you will about Shia LeBeouf, but he is a good choice for playing a young Robert Downey Jr.
Though not the most interesting film in the world story-wise, this hits right into my wheelhouse, as I've
always found films set in New York City in the seventies and eighties; especial
ly when it also involves
hot latina girlfriends named Melonie Diaz (a rising star I hope). The story itself is pretty straight-forward,
about a kid fighting to release himself from a neighborhood that struggles to bring him down...nothing
we haven't seen before. But the packaging of that story, the people and the sets and such, make it a
pretty enjoyable viewing.



Gummo (1997)
 - 9 out of 10 -

Gummo, along with David Gordon Green's George Washington and All the Real Girls, remind me
a lot of my childhood; so much so that I would probably find it a bit creepy if I didn't love both my
youth and these films.  And it's not that my adolescence was ever specifically like the scenarios
presented in these three films; it's more that the vibe of the projects, the nature of their characters,
even the very scenery pretty much nailed what it was like for me to grow up in the south (then again,
All the Real Girls actually wasn't filmed too far from my boyhood home).

The general idea behind Gummo is that the town of Xenia, Ohio has not yet recovered from a par-
ticularly devastating tornado, and the film documents what is happening in the local's lives after the
fact.  The result is a series of loosely intertwining vinettes where nothing much really happens or is
resolved from start to finish, the characters featured in the film are only mildly likeable at best, and the
locale the story takes place in is portrayed as being so disgusting that you feel like you're going to
catch a communicable disease just by viewing the movie.  But let's be honest here - how many films
can you watch a weird looking kid eat spaghetti in dirty bath water, watch professional skateboarder
Mark Gonzales wrestle a chair, or see Chloe Sevigny dance around topless with tape on her nipples
and her eyebrows shaved off?  Plus, the soundtrack is rad.

Gummo is most definitely not for everyone - in fact, I know plenty of folks whose opinions I might other-
wise trust who despise it.  This is one of those films I can put on at any time and always enjoy it.  Maybe
you'll love it, maybe you'll hate it, but I'm pretty sure you'll react one way or the other...i can't imagine
this film has ever cause very much apathy.


Gunner Palace (2004)
- 8 out of 10 -

Excellent documentary about the lives of a company of soldiers stationed in Iraq that have taken up
residence in one of Saddam's former palaces.  This is probably as true a doc as you'll find, with the
filmmaker seemingly letting his subject matter do all of the talking; not unlike regular society, some
soldiers like and are glad with what they are doing, other think it's futile and stupid.  It's particularly
insightful to see and hear the thoughts running through these young kids heads, knowing they could
die at any minute.  Highlights aboung, but the soldier known as Wilf is a human highlight reel in both
actions and words, a real character.  Regardless of your stance on the war, this would be a highly
informative and entertaining watch for anyone.