Saturday, June 18, 2005

Annie (1999)

I got this because of its overabundance of musical theater people. (FIVE of 'em!!) And... I have almost no idea what I thought of it. All the musical theater people put in tremendous performances. Kathy Bates was the oddest Miss Hannigan I've ever seen. You got the feeling that deep down inside she was really a very nice person. That is DEFINITELY not supposed to happen. I suppose this is as good as any production of Annie is ever likely to get. *shrug* 2.5 stars.

Musical Theater People Sighting: WHEE!!! This movie includes in its cast... *deep breath* Audra McDonald, Victor Garber, Alan Cumming, Kristin Chenoweth, and Andrea McArdle. How cool is THAT? ;-)

Home Alone (1990)

People kept telling me this was like the funniest movie ever. Fifteen minutes in, I was seriously doubting it. Nothing had yet popped up to make me smile, I was too busy being disgusted at all the characters' lack of... anything redeeming. However it DID perk up. Once the kid was on his own he became much less obnoxious, and since all the obnoxious characters were on a plane trip to France we saw very little of them, and all was well. I most definitely wouldn't classify it as one of the great comedies of the century or anything, but I suppose I'm glad I saw it this once. No, I do not intend to see the sequels. I didn't like it that much. 2.5 stars.

Animal Crackers (1930)

I think this is my favorite of all the Marx Brothers. It was filled with goofiness from beginning to end, and had several bits that just made me giggle out loud. One of those very rare movies that are just solidly funny all the way through. Now *that* is tough to pull off. I'm not sure what else to say about this, except... everyone go watch it. It rocks. 4 stars.

Double Indemnity (1944)

Classic film noir, which, when I'm in the mood for it, is quite fun. Unfortunately I wasn't in the mood for it when I watched this flick so I didn't really care for it all that much. I'm sure on another day I would have been far more interested in it. It probably was quite good, I just didn't want to watch it. 3 stars.

Artificial Intelligence: AI (2001)

Plot: A highly advanced robotic boy longs to become "real" so that he can regain the love of his human mother.

YES! YES YES YES YES! Oh gosh I loved this movie. *grin* I'm a sucker for movies that make me cry... there aren't very many of them, but the few there are, I love. This movie is horribly sad and so very well-done that I was bawling through nearly the whole thing. I cried even more than during Savannah Smiles. Haley Joel Osment is amazing in this movie and was probably one of the most talented child actors EVER out there. (I'm intrigued to see if he stays interesting should he act in more things as a teen/adult.) Simply put, this is QUITE possibly my favorite movie I saw this year, although it horribly depressed both my parents. That scene where he's in the submarine has to be the saddest thing I have EVER seen in a movie. *deep contented sigh* Yes, I loved this movie mucho. 5 stars.

Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986)

Talk about a light fluffy comedy. Actually, I've been watching a lot of those lately. Hmm. Anyway, this one was a BLAST. Twenty minutes into it, my dad turned to me and said, "This is actually a lot funnier than I thought it would be." At one point it depressed me a bit, but that's a long story I shan't get into. This movie was thoroughly enjoyable and is one of the better irresponsible-teen comedies out there. Not that I can think of any others off the top of my head that I've seen. But whatever. 4 stars.

Thursday, June 2, 2005

Anatomy of a Murder (1951)

I read the book on my dad's recommendation a few months ago and absolutely loved it. It felt so wonderfully real. So when I noticed this sitting in our local video store I decided I should see it. To my delight it had been only slightly Hollywoodized and only slightly shortened. (It's a good 2 1/2 hour movie.) The atmosphere of the book was kept as was, well, nearly everything else about it. It's a fascinating look into the basic in-and-outs of how a lawyer might defend a guy who HAD committed a murder and probably belonged in jail. No real moral judgments or anything here, just the telling of this case and how it was plotted out. This was a pretty darn great movie. 4 stars.

Adam's Rib (1949)

Plot: Domestic and professional tensions mount when a husband and wife work as opposing lawyers in a case involving a woman who shot her husband.

I'm not sure I entirely understood this movie. Usually I thoroughly enjoy Tracy and Hepburn. I loved them in the goofy comedy Desk Set as well as in a serious drama like Guess Who's Coming To Dinner. But this movie didn't manage to be either one. It was too goofy to be a drama but far too serious to be a comedy. I spent the entire movie unsure whether I was supposed to be feeling sad or happy. So . . . I didn't enjoy it. I was too confused by the time the credits rolled. Yeah, it had a few moments I enjoyed, but the overall movie felt too oddly mixed. 2 stars.

Face/Off (1997)

*grin* Oh, how I do love silly movies about psychotics. Erm. That sounded much odder than I thought it would. Oh, well. This movie had a thoroughly strange premise and had the potential to be either really stupid or really fantastic. It fell close-ish to the fantastic side but didn't QUITE make it all the way there. Definitely had some great moments. (Actually, when I rented it my mom and dad had a very long discussion trying to remember whether Nicolas Cage or John Travolta was the bad guy. When the movie began and it was revealed to be Nicolas Cage, I said, "Oh, good, I haven't seen him in an evil psychotic role yet," only to find twenty minutes later that ACTUALLY John Travolta will be playing the villain for most of this flick. Dang. I hoped to see more Psycho Cage. *shrug*) And goodness, that was a very long review considering that 3/4 of it was just rambling not on whether or not I LIKED the movie but... other things. Oh well. I'm writing these reviews at 4:39 a.m. because I can't sleep and have just read a 315-page book about a gorilla in my efforts to try and fall asleep. 3.5 stars.