Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Wrestler

Mickey Rourke performs well in this acute and accurate depiction of a wrestler's life. Not everyone of them makes it large like Hulk Hogan. There are allot of reasons why certain wrestlers become successful and others not. I am sure drugs and alcohol are strong contributory reasons why some of these wrestlers, perhaps most, do have a healthy lifestyle. Others probably have comfortable lifestyles but do not become super rich from their chosen wrestler profession.

Rourke plays a Randy Savage type wrestler. Well, in appearance, Randy Savage found his niche with his voice and acting. Not sure what he is doing now though. Rourke plays a pretty much loser, named Randy 'The Ram' Robinson. He is a broken down wrestler, still living off of his lore, without any savings or anything to fall back on. His daughter loathes him because he neglected her and then rekindles that hatred when he flakes out on her after he set up a long awaited dinner date with her. He is not that bright and this is obvious from the beginning.

This movie is worth watching just because of Marisa Tomei stars in this movie and rarely wears clothes. She has kept that figure after many years and is adorable as always. Though her storyline has been written before. Her relationship, or if there is one, with The Ram is entertaining.

The movie presents the terrible habits many or most wrestlers develope. Drugs, steriods, even the tanning salon can be damaging to the human body. Against the doctor's wishes, The Ram continues his destructive lifestyle. He may have cut down on the drugs.

The Ram once was a star wrestler about 20 years ago, in the 1980's. He has many fans from that day but he apparently did not save any of that money nor think about the future. Not unlike so many people that are alive today. He had too much fun, and probably thought the big money would always come. Not unlike Mike Tyson and Jose Canseco, he spent the money as fast as it came in.

The Ram is wrestling in fourth rate accomodations, not even nice ballrooms. For the most part, it is like dilapitated gyms with about a 100 fans cheering the wrestlers on.

The Ram has a side job, working at a grocery store, loading and offloading trucks. When he has a heart attack, the doctor instructs him he needs stop wrestling and to stop putting those drugs and compounds in his body. The Ram obeys these wise commands for a while, but after taking some extra shifts in the meat section of the grocery store, he falls apart in front of customers. He cuts his finger on a meat slicer and this sets him off. He throws a tantrum like a 5 year old. Pathetic and sad, he ruined some food, horrified customers, and almost could have been arrested for his behavior. He walks out to his car and pretty much home, his van.

There is not any other stars in this movie. No characters worth mentioning.

It is hard to believe people watch this sort of entertainment. It is not appealing to me, perhaps a big show at a wonderful arena, but not at these junctions. But back up and minor league wrestling is not worth my time, not most peoples'.

Rourke is the best looking man but that is why he is perfect for this part. Wrestlers are beat up, it is staged but I always knew jumping around like that is still dangerous. Having chairs slammed into one's back does not feel good, even with acting and cooperation.

The Ram wrestles one last time at the end. He knows he should and Tomei's character pleads with him to back down. But The Ram has nothing else to do, he knows that is it for him. That is the way to go out. I am sure one of those fans would offer him room and board for a while but he never submits or succumbs to this level of reasoning nor understanding. He does not want his troubles to be known. Pride or terrible thinking, what ever. It is not uncommon.

This movie has some decent music, some humorous scenes, and Tomei is again appealing. The movie is superb, not outstanding. I would not want to sit through it again-this is the pivotal feeling. And feeling sorry for wrestlers and that profession, or some of them, is not something I am about to do. The suffering in India with the Mumbai attacks, China's earthquake, the victims of the recent and brutal Santa Clause murders, those are things to mourne over. But Rourke will not win an Oscar because one must have multiple steller roles to finally earn this top recognition. Jamie Foxx is the few to have taken this award after only a few impressive performances. Rourke does not have any. Sin City, I do not think so.

I would allocate this movie three stars.***

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Behind Enemy Lines: Colombia

Keith David, is the only recognizable face in this movie. It is action packed, the writing and story line are unoriginal. The reason I liked it is because of the high tech weapons and equipment in this movie.

It is hard to believe all of this jungle fighting and shooting, not one snake or bug from the natural environment. Why would one neglect this? This would have made the movie more interesting and believable. The movie does begin with some cool footage of FARC and explains what this group is about and their dangerous and murderous activities.

The military and CIA sends in a small SEALS team into this FARC region to spy on them. They film them having an important meeting with the Columbian military. This meeting is interupted by the Columbian military and everyone is shot accept the Columbian general. The seals get mixed up in this shootout and are ratted out by one of our guys in the states. Someone dropped the ball, the CIA dimed these SEALS out so they can take the blame on this violence. I did not listen to this movie exactly and obtain all of the tidbits and details. The Columbian General is the main villian, the CIA are made out to be a bureaucratic jumbled mess with terrible leadership in their command structure.

The movie did not have any spectacular action, was pretty simple, and low budget. No humor really, and only one attractive female who was killed. But it is still better than Wicker Man with Nicolas Cage and the Island of Dr. Moreau.

I would allocate this movie one star. *

Friday, December 26, 2008

Che: Part One

Benicio Del Toro performs incredibly well and shows why and how Ernesto Che Guevara or Che was such a charismatic and magnanimous leader. Steven Soderbergh who redeemed himself with Ocean's 13 after the flat Ocean's 12 has another winner. I am not sure what Hollywood's intention here is though, Cuba is still a poor and pathetic country. Even if there is alot of good people in Cuba, the country is based in misery and is a loser country. Why did Castro not realize communism is a loser's philosophy and has not worked in any country. It no longer is in practice in China like it used to be and that is the only stalward. China is going capitalist.

North Korea is not communist, that is a brutal totalitarianship.

Che was a true leader who was integral in tossing out the nasty dictator Batista. Batista exploited Cuba's population and seemed to be a US puppet. Fidel Castro then become a Soviet Union puppet. What a change. This movie, which was about 2 hours and 15 minutes long showed the compassion that Che held. How long did this last? He allowed people who did not want to fight with him to leave the struggle. But anyone in Cuba for the past 40 years who has spoken out against Cuba in any fashion or voiced any contrary opinion of Fidel's policies is tossed in prison and not heard from again. Castro could be the hardest headed human in the past several centuries, never abandoning his terrible policies.

I was not cognizant Che planned this struggle in Mexico nor that he was Argentinian. This movie did not show allot of Che's early life or how he formulated such demented nor radical ideaology. He did not trust democracy for some reason which seems to be based on faulty reasoning. I do not trust political correctness since it is destroying the first amendment of the USA and contributed to terrible events of Sept. 11th, 2001.

This movie was funny at times. When they had the column standing in rows and asked if any of them wanted to quit. Several did, Che and his fellow leaders would denounce and insult them. I can repeat or will not type what they did, well, one was a horse's ass. That was funny, their insults were pretty creative.

Batista was a nasty villian who was unliked by almost everyone in the country. Why the USA supported this piece of you know what is probably something we would change if we could.

I did not hear any fascinating music. The writing was good, the story flowed well. Glad to see Del Toro back, he is an intriguing actor. I learned some things and had no qualms regarding reading subtitles throughout this movie. It seemed accurate and the attention to detail was acute.

I would allocate this movie three stars.***

Yes Man

Jim Carrey plays Carl Allen who is just a miserable wreck. He had a nasty divorce with a characterless and shallow woman, but who is highly attractive as well. This aspect of Carl's life is not shown but it is explained and insinuated.

This is not Carrey's best movie but I am glad to see him return to comedy full swing. Because 23 was a disaster any producer trying to make Jim Carrey as a tough guy is just fooling themselves and totally discrediting the movie. As they did in the movie 23.

How Carl maintains friendships is a mystery since he says no to them for years and they continue to call him up and see if he will hang out with them. They should move on, Carl is a loser who does not want to do any thing. Not only this, he lies about it and says he has other things to do. When in reality, is calendar is clear on every evening. So one of his friends takes him to this scientology like fake but inspiring motivational speaker to the faithless losers which exist. The scientologists and people of this ilk fall into this line and are easily persuaded since they have little moral ground or fabric. Carl is one of these people, weak, no religious background, so this makes him psychologically desperate and easily impressed.

Terence Stamp plays this charismatic guru to the suckers of America and runs on this theme of being a Yes Man. Stop saying no to the world, live life, have fun, try new things, and accept life's indulges. In some cases, this may work and one could have some fun. But anyone with a clue would know this not work and would most likely ruin one's life. But this is fiction and Carl who is swooned by Stamp's gure character, actually gets raises. Personally, his friends love him since he pays for their drinks and food, he also buys anything that he wants and wastes his time on strange websites. No one could function like this, it would always end terribly. But he is single and this being a movie, he actually keeps his job and is recognized for his seeminly sloppy and careless work, he is rewarded. Goofy but it is supposed to be.

Zooey Deschanel who is not really appealing plays Carl's love interest. She is not appealing, which only detracts from this movie. She gets upset at Carl because she finds out that he is on this goofy program where he feels compelled to say yes all of the time. So her asinine character leaves him because she does not know him. So why does she leave him? Will that get her to know him? The movie is flawed and has some holes here. I can understand she is upset that some of his yes's could have been influenced by this program, but what is needed here is a heart to heart discussion. Instead she runs off like a third grader and Carl who is basically a second grader in the movie, spends the rest of the movie chasing her.

This movie is not a Pineapple Express, not even close. It is nothing like Burn After Reading either. Ben Stiller, Adam Sandler, Jim Carry, all had their comedies this year and none were that spectacular nor memorable. Jim Carry's Dumb and Dumber is still the best comedy of my generation, I believe. Yes Man is not that good at all. The sex scene with the old woman, is disgusting. But I am sure people that could not understand this blog would enjoy it.

The music was decent. The best scene is when Jim Carry is singing that awesome song with a guitar to prevent him from committing suicide. I with society would not shut down roads to prevent someone from committing suicide but we strangely do. This case, no one was affected buy it, no money lost, nor time spent besides the fire department and police being called.

Carl allowing some bum to burn up his cell phone, drive him out to some home, and taking all of his money is funny. The Carl running out of gas and not having the cell phone capability to call for help is just hilarious. That was the funniest part to me. Carry taping his face and being goofy with his gay like co worker was entertaining as well.

I allocate this movie two stars.**

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Gran Torino

Clint Eastwood plays and directs a low budget film without any recognizable names or faces. Walt Kowalski is his character's name. No reason why he did this, perhaps the same reason his character helps out Tao. A Hmong neighbor of his who is young boy trying to survive high school in his vulnerable teenage years. His cousin is in a gang or the leader of it and does not have any adult guidance. His parents are never shown.

Walt is a retired citizen, living in a neighborhood which has been taken over my minorities. The neighborhood's demographic has changed dramatically but Walt still likes it, he is an old stalwart and cares about the neighborhood progress. He notices the bad characters in the area and steps in the middle of danger when no one else is around and does not have to. His neighbors are Hmong and this culture is a main fabric of the movie.

Walt is a Korean war veteran, and has a gorgeous 1972 Gran Torino. I have never heard of this car but apparently Ford use to make them and Walt actually installed the steering column in the car. Walt is old school, he is a bigot, speaks his mind, and does not have anything to lose. He has allot of tools and his home is in excellent condition. Walt has the time, tools, and wherewithal to maintain his cars and home. He does not drive around his Gran Torino, just maintains it and keeps it covered in his garage. This is how the story takes shape.

Walt's neighbor is a traditional and close knit Hmong family whose son Walt calls toad but is really called Tao. The local gang wants Tao to join them and for initiation, they want Tao to seal his gorgeous Torino. Walt hears someone in his garage and confronts Tao in the garage with his shotgun. Tao parents find out what happened through the grapevine and they plead with Walt to allow their son to work for him to pay off his debt.

One night, Tao's vicious gangster cousin stops by with his loser friends. They want Tao to come with them and they want Tao to attempt to steal the car again. The family comes out and fights for Tao. The struggle ensues and moves into Walt's front lawn. Walt confronts the melee and points his shotgun at the gang members and tells them, in his insulting but humorous way to bug off.

Later on in the movie, the gang drives by and sprays the house with automatic gunfire. They also beat and rape Tao's sister. The young priest who is persistent, young, and somewhat annoying, but has divine and holy intentions, finally is able to speak to Walt and persuade him into confession. The viewer is waiting for Walt to seek revenge and Tao wants to go over to his cousin's home and shoot them. Walt does not want Tao to get hurt and knows this type of retaliation could be a trap. I was hoping that Walt would shoot these gang members one or two at a time over the course of several days. That would fit with the movie and his character. The ending is somewhat surprising in that he offers himself to the gang at night. He does not have a weapon with him, but tricks the gang in murdering him in front of the neighbors who see everthing and it is obvious since the gunfire all comes from one house. It is a shut down case, not allot of sympathy.

Before this occurs, Walt attends long awaited confession, has a fruitful but short conversation with one of his sons, gives his dog to his neighbors, and writes a will that gives the mint condition Torino to Tao and not his son's trashy and brain dead daughter.

The movie has some funny scenes, music is almost nonexistent, and the drama is nothing that is close to riveting. But the movie is realistic and believable. There is some suspense at the end but it is short lived.

Why did Eastwood want to direct and make this movie? Perhaps he wanted to give some people some screen time that would otherwise never have a shot. It could be to show the Hmong people to the country. He also could have been waiting to just make a movie is undoubtably credible.

I allocate this movie two stars.**

Friday, December 19, 2008

7 Pounds

This was a winner by a relatively unknown director by Gabriele Muccino. Superstar Will Smith is the leading actor in this film.

The movie is powerful and the ultimate guilt trip. The pursuit for personal and perhaps public redemption is in full stride in this movie.

The movie present us with Smith playing Ben Thomas. Thomas is seen as an IRS agent but we are purposely confused with one quick scene when Thomas is shown leading some time of sales meeting with a strange acronym on the screen. So, for about 40 minutes, or probably longer since this was a healthy movie and not a short one, we are not sure what Thomas is doing. He seems free and happy, shown swimming in the gorgeous ocean with a wonderful beach front home. Where did he earn this type of lifestyle? Not really sure, if we ever are.

Later on, it is revealed he stole from a friend of his, or a "donor acquaintence," his IRS credentials. Thomas seems to have considerable power as he is shown destroying, verbally, and somewhat physically, a hospital director. Thomas's character is deep and this is evident from the opening scene. The opening scene later becomes the present. Movies have done this before.

Thomas excoriates Woody Harrelson for being blind. This is early in the movie, and his character is made to be cruel and vindictive. This occurs over the phone. It is later to be determined that he was only testing Harrelson's character as Ezra Turner to see if he was truly kind. Which the hospital director apparently is not.

Michael Ealy was a surprise actor in this film, in something that is as serious as this. A big leap from Barbershop. Towards the end of the film, Ealy's character which is actually Thoma's brother, is shown to be the actual IRS agent. Thomas stole his credentials and in a conversation in the middle of the film, fights off this inquiry from his brother by reminding him that he gave him something of considerable importance. Since Ealy's character softens up and conversation runs cold and end.

Thomas is either the ultimate savior with the most civic mindeness in history or someone who just likes getting mixed up in other people's lives. What really happened is Thomas was driving his wife, chose to look at his blackberry rather than the road, and causes a major accident. His wife may not have been wearing her seatbelt. She is killed, and the oncoming van which rams into Thomas's car, is upended as well. I am not sure the outcome with those passengers. Not sure if there were any deaths but injuries resulted I am sure. Thomas can not dump the guilt, the pain causes him to help others. He gives part of his liver to a woman and I guess this paves the way for him to want to help others.

He enters the highly attractive Rosario Dawsons character's life which is Emily Posa. Smith and Dawson were in the garbage movie Men in Black II together about 10 years ago. Dawson steps up her game and performs incredibly well, she holds her own with Smith. Perhaps both will be nominated for this winner. This movie is far superior than Australia.

The movie does not really have any flaws. The characters are explained well for the most part. Barry Pepper also stars in this movie and he is the one who ensures Thomas's heart ends up inside Posa. Posa and Thomas fall in love a week before Thomas makes the ultimate sacrifice. He is totally determined to keep her on the earth, living. She happens to have a rare heart disorder and only has about a month to live since it is enlarging.

Thomas picks these people to help out by seeing a woman who works for the government. What office, I am not sure. But Thomas goes to considerable lengths to ensure these people are not at fault and worth helping.

Pepper plays Dan and Dan and Thomas have been best friends since young teenagers, perhaps before this. Dan and Thomas have a powerful conversation in the motel room that Thomas chooses to live in and complete his stay on this planet with us. In this motel room, during this odd conversation, Dan seems to be the guy that will handle the loose ends that Thomas can or does not want to handle. It all comes together at the end, but mainly, after the movie ends for the viewer. There are not any wasted scenes, in fact, some scenes may want to be scene again or have to by the viewer. Dan is a nice person but he does not seem to talk Thomas out from what he is planning. He may have, but it would have before the movie begins in their fictional relationship.

This movie had the sad but terrific music, some humorous scenes were mixed in, the language was memorable. Will Smith performs in this movie as solid and as magnificent as his Oscar winning sensation as he did in The Pursuit of Happyness. Hitch was awesome too, an outstanding action movie. So I forgive him for making last year's biggest let down and strangest title, I Am Legend. This movie was pathetically weak.

The creative part of this movie is how Thomas chooses to end his life. But any Discovery channel viewer knows the box jelly fish has a cousin with an even more powerful sting. Regardless, I am glad the box jelly fish do not live in Hawaii and this is a frightening species. I am sure it died at the end as well since the water was too cold and I do not remember if Thomas put salt in the bathtub water.

I hope he paid the motel manager some up front money because that would not be right Thomas skipping out on that deal.

I allocate this movie five stars. *****

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Day the Earth Stood Still

The Hollywood left is at it again. I am not sure how the original went, I will inquire about that. Now the left wants Aliens to come down here and force us to be kinder to the environment. The politicians can not figure it out, so a Professor is the most rationale around.

Keanu Reeves stars in this movie, he is an alien but in human form. It is not his best performance but he is near the stunning Jennifer Connelly. Too bad her character undermines the human race and warns Reeve's character Klaatu to run.

Kathy Bates performs well as the Secretary of Defense.

The movie begins in the Himalays, on the Indian side. Reeves is climbing a mountain in fierce conditions in 1928. It is snowing and windy, the temperature is probably in the negatives, not sure of the altitude. He walks into this cave and sees this glowing object. He touches it and the object glows brighter and overwhelms him. He wakes up and then the movie launches forward to the present day. Before this though, it is shown that Reeves has a strange mark on his upper right hand after he wakes up in the snow and freezing cold.

The plot is similiar to Independence Day in some respects. The difference is, that movie was not an environmental scare tactic and it was a blockbuster. In the first part of this film, there is an object approaching earth. Like the aliens in ID4, it manipulates our satellites, picks off our languages, and gathers stratetic and historic intelligence. Apparently, and sort of like the disastrous War of the Worlds, alien objects have been hiding underneath our surface for a while. But, in this respect, Day is a little more realistic. The objects in Day are not as large and night right under developed areas. This fact and detail in Worlds was just ridiculous and I did not fall for it, nor did some others that I have spoke with regarding this poor and anti-USA movie.

Similiar to Michael Crichton's Sphere, some of the best scientists and minds are gathered. This scene or movie does not have any character development. Connelly's character is an astronomer of some sort, she was put on this "vital list."

These alien objects rise out of the ground all over the world while one arrives from deep outer space at super fast speeds. These alien objects attract species on earth, like snakes, frogs, and dolphins. That is why there are more than one and located in various parts of this planet.

Humans quickly realize this object or alien being is far more advanced and our weapons and defenses have no affect on it. Yet, throughout the movie, we attempt to shoot at it and blow it up. Rather than just have a logical discussion with it. This is ridiculous, the alien form transforms itself into Reeves and the only person we have to have discourse with this alien is the SecDef. Too incredible.

About half way in the movie, with Connelly and Reeves on the run from the authorities, the truth is told. Reeves says the process to destroy the planet has begun, earth is too valuable for us to destroy it. First off, we have to fix anything we destroy and if we do not, then humans will die. As humans have died throughout the ages for all sorts of environmental mistakes. Jared Diamond's Collapse discusses past societies that have fallen off the face of the earth. In the contemporary world, humans are dying now for the same reason. Lack of clean water is one reason certain humans are dying on the planet for environmental reasons. If an alien approached me with this concern and said he was considering on wiping out all humans for the sake of the planet, I would be flattered for this alien caring that much for our home but question their morality since this is our planet. We will not destroy it, that is that. Yes, Reeve's character is apparetly in consortium with other alien species and they have decided we are a destructive species and should die since there is not enough earth like planets to go around. Too support complex life.

OK, that is allot said. This is our planet despite the aliens in this movie saying or believing it is not. They are species murderers so they are not any better than us. Also, this movie says we are a destructive species. This concept was proposed by the software law enforcement representative called Mr. Smith in The Matrix. In that movie, he said we were a plague, consuming everything around us. That is a cynical description. Reeve's character in Day has a vital discussion with an intelligent and logical Professor who successfully tosses Reeve's argument back at him. Reeve's alien admits they had to change when their sun was dying out. So during a precipice, they were forced to make drastic changes. The Professor, said sit still, give us a shot, let us do the same. He did not say, do not be hypocritical or drastic, but that is how I took it and it was insinuated. But the Professor was cordial, not flamboyant or argumentative at all. He was calm and reasonable and this impression influenced Reeve's alien character.

During these scenes, the military and our leaders were making asinine decisions. Trying to beat a magnificent force. No reason to, they were not openly hostile to us like they were in ID4. Too bad we did not have Superman around, since these aliens were this powerful. Why did Reeve's oval alien object have a large looking robot protecting it is beyond me and the other oval objects shown around the world via the net did not? Well, these aliens did kill allot of us by using tiny but voracious insects that multiplied into the trillions and moved with true force. Like a whirlwind of power.

Prison Break pyschopath Robert Knepper played the Kernel in this film. He is taking full advantage of his fame. I can not blame him, his star is bright. He should win Emmy's for his T-bag character who has and does commit about every crime imaginable in that tremendous TV show.

Day was not that good of a movie. Not as bad as The Wicker Man which was also remade. That movie was probably the worst movie in the past 10 years, it was Cage's film and how he was sucked into that movie is beyond me. He must have owed someone a favor. Last year, Hollywood remade another alien movie and it too, was a disaster. The Invasion with Kidman and James Bond's Daniel Craig was failure, but not nearly as terrible as The Wicker Man. Day was the better of the three but still horrendous. The environmentalists can not end OPEC tomorrow so they toss us into this guilt trip. I do not feel guilty, I want energy. I do not see how I could have fun and be as knowledgeable as I am and continue to learn without energy. I do not want to live in a dark world and I do not want to pay 4 times what I am paying for instant clean energy. Solar panels and wind energy are coming around. But the Barnie Frank's of the world caused this economic catastophy in the USA, this will suck money away from important energy projects to bail out out certain companies and agencies. Or anything that begs properly.

This movie was not an epic, it was not that long, the characters were weak. Connelly's character had a black child with annoying or cool dreadlocks, depending on one's proclivities, whose real mother is gone and the father died in Iraq. The politically correct movie had to point out that the father was not a soldier but an engineer in Iraq. As if the father was a gun toting soldier, his death would not matter as much. Choosing a black child to be in this movie, was a politically correct move to attract some black viewers. But this movie was weak regardless if this part was played by a white or mexican child. Not one humorous scene in this movie, I did not learn one thing either. Hollywood loves showing Reapers in movies, the remote controlled fighter plane. It was also in Eagle Eye.

I would allocate this movie one star. *

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Punisher: War Zone

I did not know they were making a new Punisher movie. I am sort of disappointed by the new Punisher.

Thomas Jane was an excellent punisher and why they changed it up is beyond me. The Punisher movie franchise does not have any sticking power with the Castle character. It is a new one every time. I guess Jane is too busy being a psycho two face in the Batman movie. Two face is dead so that is that. I wish Jane would have signed the deal for another Punisher movie.

Ray Stevenson is the new punisher who does his job. Perhaps Jane wanted too much money, whatever. But why would rewrite the story line? Just keep the story or same character's past and then have another Punisher actor if Jane did not want to make a sequel. If they kept the same storyline, then a fan base could build and this could compete with the Alien or Batman series. Now it is just another action movie, like Mark Walhberg's Max Payne, tossed into the fire, two weeks and out.

Frank Castle should have killed the villian but he cared more for the torture in a glass crushing machine.

Dominic West plays Jigsaw, since it appears his Frankenstein looking face was chopped up by a jigsaw. In essence, it was being twisted in all that glass. Like The Punisher, Jigsaw was a normal human but after a traumatic experience he is transformed into something worse. The terrible part, his nutcase brother is even worse. Castled chose to fight evil, ofcourse he was already doing that, West was mafia. His dramatic encounter with The Punisher only made him worse, he became more demented.

But this movie was pretty simple. Nothing special. Not even remotely close The Dark Knight or Iron Man. Not near Street Kings. And not as good as Jane's and Travolta's Punisher for four years ago.

When Jigsaw reaches across the table and stabs a man in the throat with a turkey temperature gauge, this is fake. No one is that quick and no other man in that line of business is that slow. The Russians want to bring in a biological agent into the city and sell it to the Islamic terrorists who live in Queens. That is right, this movie occurs in Queens.

This movie is poorly acted, has a weak story line, and filled with allot of violence. It will attract many young males which is it intentional demographic. But it is barely better than straight to video. Any wealthy organized criminal would not look like that, he would hire the top plastic surgeons who would make his face new and probably different. The latter result would not be for altruistic purposes. Perhaps some would turn over a new leaf and a start anew, realizing the errors of their ways. But that storyline is not what occurs here.

The Punisher should wear a mask in some of these fighting scenes for camoflauge purposes.

How Jigsaw breaks into a mental asylum and frees his brother is just too fantastical for me to contemplate. That hospital looked liked one that would be in Russia as well.

The Punisher wins in the end, killing all of the villians as expected.

Jerry Seinfeltd's antagonist in his stellar show in the 1990's, Newman had a role in this movie. Looked like he lost some weight.

I would allocate this movie one star. *


This is a part of USA history or Nixon history I do not know about. I was not alive then and most of my reading has been around World War II or other periods of time.

The only recognizable name in this movie is Kevin Bacon who plays Richard Nixon's right hand man. Frank Langella does an outstanding position as Richard Nixon.

Sam Rockwell and Oliver Platt star in this movie as researchers and guides for Michael Sheen who plays David Frost. They are liberals who loath Nixon and want to pound him in the dust. They are jealous that Nixon never faced trial for Watergate and Vietnam and everything else the goofball hippies could conjure up. I am not down playing Watergate, it was a fiasco and Nixon was replaced by Gerald R. Ford. Nixon did suffer but he was pardoned by Ford so he never faced trial. This apparently infuriated the left. Kind of like Clinton being impeached in the 1997 I believe but never facing trial or being convicted. Nevertheless, his last 2 years in office was even more of a circus than the other six.

Frost pays for a series of interviews with Nixon. This is the plot of the movie. He wants to hammer Nixon for crimes the left feels he committed. Vietnam, Cambodia, and what not. But Nixon tosses this back into Frost's face and appears presidential and completely in control. This upsets the left who Frost seems to represent. His researchers are upset that Frost can not corner Nixon and pin any of his past mistakes to the wall. Nixon explains himself well and does not get flustered with Frost's attempts to get Nixon to admit his foreign policy was a mistake and travesty.

Nixon does admit his scandalous mistakes regarding Watergate. He knows that he affected many young people who made have wanted to committ themselves to public office but could be turned off because of its pitfalls and seemingly level of corruption.

This pales in the soft interviews Bill Clinton has done with Leno and Letterman. I do not think Larry King is credible and is a out of touch liberal, so any interview he does with a Democrat is filled with a bunch of softball questions that a 10 year old could handle. Ofcourse Clinton has the moral capacity of a 10 year old.

This movie is not really funny, more historical. Frost's wife is a looker, looks like Anne Hathway, played by Rebecca Hall. I would allocate this film two starts. **


Hugh Jackman or Wolverine to me and many others stars in this half way decent movie. I would not consider it an epic but they tried their best to make it so.

Nicole Kidman plays the same part as she did in Cold Mountain, which is the helpless and almost useless person, accept for one thing, caught up in the chaos and adventure of the times.

Aboriginis star in this movie. The troublesome thing is that they are not as wholesome and pleasant as politically correct Hollywood portrays them to be. I have been to Perth and the aboriginis there cussed us out without a reason with some of the most vulgar language. They can not deal with change that well and their despair is evident. They need to make a psychological change and until they do, they will be a public nuisance.

The movie occurs in Australia mostly with some opening scenes in England that shows Nicole Kidman's upper echelon staus in society. It also shows just how skinny she is. The years are 1939 and 1940, around then, just prior to when WWII came to Australia's shores.

I saw this movie in Korea and the theatre is packed. Koreans were really paying attention to the Japanese scenes at the end of this movie. The Japanese did not treat allot of people properly during this era, during World War II.

Kidman's plays Lady Sarah Ashley whose husband own's land in the Northern Territories. He is a cattleman who supplies beef to prospective buyers. Ashley's husband is killed though in the beginning by what we are suspected as an aborigini kill. Ashley travels from England to Australia and the way the map is shown while the plane flies over it is a copy of the Indiana Jones movies. Aboriginis work the land, the domestic chores in the household. The little aborigini boy which looks like a girl, is also the bright spot in the movie. The annoying thing is that they call Kidman throughout the movie, the aboriginis, boss lady. To me, this is not cute or inspiring, it just reinstates the English as the rich folks and the indiginous folks as brain dead lacky's. Why they can not say Ashley or whatever, it seems they are no brighter than a dog? The little aborigini boy must say boss lady about 80 times in this movie, is that supposed to be cute?

Jackman is Drover which is also his profession, he drives cattle from one river to the next and/or to the coastal down where they can be loaded onto a waiting ship. The word "drover" is also said about 80 times in the movie which just grows old as well. He starts out as drunk loser fighting the town but then about 20 minutes later he is a strategic cattlemen, the best in all of the land, who is a charismatic leader. Someone did not think that out or this character development. For someone who is highlighted as a brute, who gets liquored up all too much, who brawls frequently, and spends allot of time in the outback, he sure had nice teeth.

The enemies of Ashley in this movie is another cattle herder who wants to sell his cattle to the army and if he is the only seller he can make a serious profit from the army. Bryan Brown plays King Carney who hires or employs some local Australians to do everything he can think of to destroy the cattle herd. He wants to run them off a cliff and attemps this by lighting lighting fuel with gasoline which startles them. This is an exciting scene. My dad would enjoy all of this since he likes to look at horses. The movie makes a the Australian cowboy seem like the most wonderful job on the planet. The heat and dirt would be unbearable, but this movie does not really indicate the truth of this.

CVG which is computer video games is evident throughout the movie. Perhaps the director Baz Luhrmann could not receive the proper financing to shoot this film. Not one scene in Dances With Wolves, Braveheart, Last of the Mohicans, or Gladiator appeared to be fake. Australia had so many computer generated scenes it is just terrible. It detracts from the movie, informs or reminds the viewer that this is a movie and fantasy. The experience is hampered and brought down in size. Which is why this movie is not near any of those movies in terms of spectacular cinematic experience and enjoyment.

The fire, airplace, cattle scenes were all fake and looked this way.

During the cattle drive, the villians poisoned the rivers or water holes so the cattle could not reach their destination. Nasty people. King Carney could have sold his cattle to the military for a fair price and the ship and cattle would have been long gone by the time Ashley's cattle reached the destination. But greed and avarice carries the day.

The Japanese scenes at the end were as vicious as they should have been. Glad the Australians let the prisoners go, well, atleast the ones who had not been conviced of anything. They had King George, which is a local veteran aborigini who was accused of the white man of killing Ashley's husband. But it was not him despite this movie making it appear he did. Which is just strange. Why is called King George is not explained. He is ugly though, I have never scene an attractive aborigini.

Another aspect of this movie is when the little aborigini boy hides from local officials since he did not want to go to this island camp. This island camp was official Australian policy until 1973, according to the movie. They called it the lost generation apparently but was the alternative? Sit around white folks home, watch one's mother wash dishes and clean the bathroom, so one can do the same in about 15 years? If they atleast learned how to read, it would be better than nothing. There were white children at this camp as well. When her mother drowns in the water tower because she can not swim is pathetic. Why can she not swim? Her son can, he was jumping and swimming in the river after a seasonal rain or wet as they call it in Australia.

The best scene to me is when the Japanese were bombing the coastal town and King George was looking upwards wondering what has become of this world. What did anyone around there do to deserve such treatment? Why was his land being attack by flying, loud, and scary machines?

The movie has many slow moments, the music was just OK, but there were not many humorous lines. Few memorable quotes and not very many riveting scenes. Kidman has had this role before, sort of also in Far and Away. There was some wonderful shots of Australia though, the large rocks and interesting landscape. No spider or snake scenes which was missing. One crocodile shot or mentioning and one kangaroo appearance. Them hopping like that alongside the car in the heat the day is probably Hollywood fantasy. And it is another scene that is computer created. This movie may be nominated for Best Picture but it is no where near the movies mentioned before and it is not even on the level of Kingdom of Heaven.

Regarding historical significance, this is minimal. No important battles were fought in this area and this movie took place in a remote region to matter only to the local people. The movie highlighted that aboriginis look strange, were servants, but very close to the land and nature. Rich white men are evil, the church is repressive, and the invading Japanese were vicious. The first two are leftist stereotypes and the third is widely known.

Ashley's and Drover's courtship is detected before the movie even begins.

I would allocate three stars for this movie. ***

Friday, December 12, 2008

An American Carol

David Zucker directed a hilarious comedy about the buffoon and anti-American director we know as Michael Moore. Kevin P. Farley plays him but his fictional name is Michael Malone. They rip on Moore's movie which portrayed Cuba's health care system as superior to ours. Anyone with a clue knows this is not true. Just because one can walk into a physical building that says hospital on the front does not mean their medical treatment will be of any quality. Treatment may be available but it certainly is not free like Moore portrayed it as such. One only has to sacrifice their freedom, any profits, any political voice, basically their soul.

This movie could be a four hour special. Michael Moore has been making anti American or anti business movies for 20 years. Roger and Me was a joke as a movie. Moore does not understand this is a global marketplace and Moore's favorite health care issue has made it simple feasible for US companies to move over seas for manufacturing and economic means. But this American Carol never went after it. They attacked Moore mainly on his anti war and military crusade.

Kelsey Grammer played General George S. Patton and he performed well. Chriss Anglin was John F. Kennedy and he questioned Moore's and his liberal allies on how they are dead set on Kennedy's philosophy on war and his defense of America comments in one of his famous speech.

Bill O'Reilly was funny and was had a small role in the movie. Zucker also ripped into Rosie O' Donnell which he can make a movie about her as well. Another Hollywood disgrace with ample material to highlight in a movie.

Dennis Hopper played a gun toting judge. The ACLU was fair game in this movie as well. They should be, their policies protect terrorists and child molestors alike. They do not care about the victims. The ACLU is anti-American and anyone in their right mind knows this.

Even our first president makes an appearance and Jon Voight handles this role nicely. Voight, who I never knew existed since Mission Impossible was made, is a fine and remarkable actor. I am sure he had fun participating in this movie. Some of these famous actors probably offered their services for free since I know many true Americans are just sick of Hollywood, Michael Moore, and Alec Baldwin's anti-American crusade. Obama winning though has probably emboldened them in some way but this movie does offer a venting for many of us true and proud Americans.

The movie is sort of short though. I am not a feminist by a long shot but this movie did not have any famous female actresse(s) to highlight a well known historic female who was a solid American. The movie was funny and had many attractive females, too many too count. It is not Pineapple Express or Burn After Reading but since this movie fires a fussilade of ballistic objects towards the left, credit has to be given.

The movie offers one argument I am disgusted with and have been for a while. Malone tries to say his policies are not anti-troops but against the war. This is just a joke, only the dumbass leftist minorty fall victim to this argument. When they tried to undermine the war effort last summer, in 2007 be defunding the war, and then they said this did not hurt the troops is just a fantasy. Only true progressive fools would believe this wicked spell and despicable action. Now they look stupid since the surge prevailed despite the Michael Moore's of the world wishing it failed, more troops were killed, and then Bush could be predictably blamed once again. How quaint. Any one who says they support the troops but then wants to take away their weapons and lower their pay is not helping anybody accept radical Islam. Oh yeah, that is right, the left does not admit there is a holy war and we are in their cross hairs.

The funny thing about this entire thing, or irony here, is that the wacky progressive/liberal Sharon Stone's and Madonna's of the world are the main reason that terrorists attack us. They want western styles to fade away, woman to be covered up, Sharia law to be imposed on the world, and for us to worship Mahammed. It is no wonder Arabs take to violence so quickly, their religious leader resorted to violence as well.

Three stars is what I would allocate this movie. ***

Friday, December 5, 2008

Four Christmases

Vince Vaughn returns in a romantic comedy that is more comedy than romantic which is fine by me. Sweet acting but not that special to loo at Reese Witherspoon was his sidekick.

Katy Mixon is scene in this movie and she is wonderful to look at. Funny, she plays a loving mother and she is dressed for this part and the childless, supposed to be hot Reese Witherspoon is not nearly as attactive as the voluptious Mixon.

The other attractive face in this movie is Kristin Chenoweth who looks allot better in the movie than the pictures of her at the premier. Wow, I am not even sure if this is the same person who I am thinking of in the movie. She plays Reese's sister. Reese's face is just not that cute.

The most hilarious part in this movie is when Vaughn is getting beat up by his brothers and his brother has him pinned on the ground and his nephew jumps on him, calls him a bitch and is slapping him. Vaughn is screaming during this punishment and it is just totally funny. The first half of this movie is unique and entertaining. The second half, the movie loses it's luster and drive. The energy and spontaniety dips and declines. It is disappointed. It does not come close to Burn After Reading or Pineapple Express.

Tim McGraw is present in this movie but does not have allot of lines. I am not why he is doing this, one would think he would rather spent time with his stunning wife-Faith Hill-than take these parts. He has a powerful but short part in the movie The Kingdom as well. Does he need extra pocket change? Whatever.

The movie has a funny and creative plot. Witherspoon and Vaughn have a relationship where they spend every Christmas or holiday period telling their families they will not see them over the holiday break or concoct a story to them while they take off to some fantastical vacation. Fiji, the Bahamas, etc. While they are scuba diving and drinking martinis on the beach their families believe they are in some third world hell hole serving food or digging piping ditches. Their luck runs out when the fog rolls into the San Francisco airport and grounds all the flights. Then, strangely enough, a media crew is shooting a story on what do people do when their vacation plans are canceled, Vaughn and Witherspoon are on camera and their families see them. Then their cell phones ring and their families are insisting they spend some time with them. This is their worst nightmare, they do not want to spend time with their families.

The comedy coincides with the story here. The truth comes out. Both have pasts they wanted to keep in the closet. Both could have avoided this embarrassment if they were truthful or had an open relationship. They have been dating for over 3 years now.

Vaughn is charismatic, large, and hilarious. Like Jennifer Aniston in the The Break-Up, Witherspoon is just pushed aside literally by Vaughn. These small woman, are not as funny nor as charming as Vaughn. Vaughn makes the film, he is just naturally funny, it is not acting to him. These female actors, with their best acting days, can not compete with what Vaughn has been doing his entire life. Even if he was working at boring Wells Fargo, he would be making customers and co-workers laugh. Hollywood needs to find a female actress who is naturally funny and attractive to make it really work. I can not think of that person, since most attractive females are not comically gifted. Witherspoon is really not that attractive any how and Ryan Phillippe is probably not missing much.

In family situations, Witherspoon deals with some babies and realizes she wants one. Towards the end, her and Vaughn discuss this and he is adamantly opposed. They momentarily break up but then hook back up. Vaughn is funny, he just rolls off lines like it is nothing, saying kids are walking tax shelters. His justification, or just one of them, for having children is funny.

Robert Duvall and Jon Voight both star in this movie. Both are Hollywood heavyweights. Duvalls scenes, atleast in the beginning, are more comical than Voights. This is just because Voight is just shown at the end when Witherspoon's character is pouting. Atleast Kristin Chenoweth is shown again.

I would allocate this movie 1 star because the second half of the movie was real weak. *