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Napoleon Dynamite (2004)
A minor classic
"Napoleon Dynamite" may not be the greatest high school movie but it certainly is one of the funniest. There are big laughs throughout this movie. This is one of those movies that actually gets better every time I see it. The cast is top-notch. The location photography is very good. The music is perfect. There is nothing not to like about "Napoleon Dynamite".
Death Proof (2007)
A self-indulgent QT endurance test
It's a lot easier talking about which movie is Quentin Tarantino's best as opposed to which one is his worst. There are too many to choose from when it comes to his duds. "Death Proof" might actually be the worst of the worst. This movie has nothing going for it. It actually seems like QT has never seen any of the genre films that supposed to admire. The "famous" QT dialogue is no where to be found. With the exception of Kurt Russell, the cast is weak and uninteresting. "Death Proof" is a movie that fails at everything it was attempting to do.
Cool World (1992)
A strong exit for Bakshi
Live or drawn, Holli Would is one of the sexiest characters ever. Kim Basinger is wildly dreamy in this movie. She's never looked better. "Cool World" is director Ralph Bakshi's final movie. His last at bat is a hit. Sure, it's not as good as his earlier work but he does give us a taste of his old outrageousness. This movie shouldn't be compared to "Who Framed Roger Rabbit". It's not in that league. If you compare it to the rest of Bakshi's body of work, it fits in fine. I first saw "Cool World" in the theater. I've seen it quite a few times since. It's never a dull watch. Honorable mention: When Bakshi says good bye.
The Burning Hills (1956)
A dreamy Natalie Wood and a pretty good supporting cast are not enough to save "The Burning Hills". An uninteresting lead in Tab Hunter and a weak script to too much to overcome. Hunter may have been a movie star at the time but he is out of his league in a western. Without him, the movie may have had a chance. As it is, "The Burning Hills" isn't worth the trouble.
Fire and Ice (1983)
Sexiest princess ever
"Fire and Ice" may not be writer/director Ralph Bakshi's best movie but it's definitely his sexiest. I know she's just a drawing but Princess Teegra is unbelievably dreamy. I can't take my eyes off her. I doubt anyone else can either. The rest of the movie is fine. It's not up to the craziness of Bakshi's earlier films but with Teegra running around like she does, who cares?
Lost in Alaska (1952)
Another A&C winner
There is a lot to like in "Lost in Alaska". Bud Abbott and Lou Costello are both in fine form. Their supporting cast is also very good. The movie has very little, if any, downtime. The are quite a few laughs and a ton of goodwill in "Lost in Alaska". Honorable mention: the song "A Hot Time in the Igloo Tonight".
It's not worth the trouble
I remember when "Brazil" came out. It was the poster child for the old "art vs commerce" debate. When it was finally released, nobody cared. Even through it it's held up as some kind of great film, I've never met anyone who actually was a fan of it. I've seen it several times (including last night) and it always leaves me flat. Sure, the art director is excellent. As are most of the performances, especially Jonathan Price. Price is terrific. It's just as a whole, "Brazil" is too long and too cluttered to be enjoyable. There are some great moments scattered throughout the movie but not enough to make it all worth while. I will, however, give writer/director Terry Gilliam an E for Effort.
The King of Staten Island (2020)
An okay watch
"The King of Staten Island" is an uneven movie. It does have a some nice moments but it has quite a few lame parts too. The cast is likeable even though the performances are hit and miss. A major problem with this movie is the length. 2 hours and 16 minutes is way too long for a movie like this. I never wanted to bail out on "The King of Staten Island" but I can't see myself watching it again anytime soon.
The Craft: Legacy (2020)
It's the pits
If the makers of "The Craft: Legacy" went for a "R" rating instead of a "PG-13", they may have made a sexy, dumb movie. But as it is, it's just dumb. The cast is either bland or unappealing or both. The story is silly and uninteresting. "The Craft: Legacy" isn't worth the trouble. It's not even good enough for a teenage girl slumber party.
Jim Belushi shines
"K-9" is a fun movie. Sure, it's silly but it's never dumb. The cast is does a nice job, especially a very appealing Jim Belushi. Belushi brings just the right tone to his performance. If "K-9" starred another actor, it wouldn't have been nearly as good. And, of course, the dog is great. I saw "K-9" a long time ago. I didn't remember it being as good as it is. Honorable mention: Mel Harris' first scene.
Suicide Squad (2016)
A star is born
The third time was the charm with "Suicide Squad". I've seen it twice before but tonight was the first time that I really enjoyed. It does have its problems but it's all okay because it also has Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn. Robbie was born to play Harley. She dominates every scene that she's in. She's awesome. The rest of the cast is also very good, especially Will Smith. Smith gives an excellent performance. The cast is so good that most of the movie's flaws are forgiven. I will watching this "Suicide Squad" again pretty soon. Honorable mention: the soundtrack.
Under Western Stars (1938)
A lot better than "Billy Jack Goes to Washington"
"Under Western Stars" is a pretty easy way to spend a Saturday morning. The story is good, the jokes are funny and the cast is appealing. I even liked the songs. I haven't seen that many of Roy Rogers movies. But because of "Under Western Stars", I'm going to seek some of them out.
A fun movie
I first saw "Enchanted" in the theater (AMC Westbury, NY). I've seen it quite a few times since. I may not like as much as the rest of my family but I still think its good. At times it's a little too silly but it's still a lot of fun. The cast does a great job. They all give very good performances, especially Patrick Dempsey. Dempsey has rarely been better. His performance keeps the movie grounded. "Enchanted" is always an easy watch.
Johnny Belinda (1948)
One of my mom's favorites
I've seen "Johnny Belinda" a bunch of times. It was one of my mother's favorites. My wife, who is deaf, will watch it every time it is on. It is a great movie. It tells it's story is a very meat and potatoes way. It is a drama that never sinks into melodrama. The cast is top-notch, especially Jane Wyman. Wyman hits the ball out of the park in this movie. I don't just watch this movie because of my wife. I like to watch "Johnny Belinda" every chance I get.
Silent Movie (1976)
I first saw "Silent Movie" in the theater (Glen Oaks, NY). I've seen it a bunch of times since. It's okay. It has more smiles than laughs but it's pleasant enough. It does seem longer than its short running time (88 minutes). The cast is good. The star cameos are mostly worth it. Nothing about "Silent Movie" really knocks my socks off but I'm sure I'll keep watching it every once in a while. Honorable mention: Paul Newman's scene.
Cloak & Dagger (1984)
A suspense classic
"Cloak & Dagger" may take place in a child's world but it not a kids movie. It is an exciting, often funny, very suspenseful movie. It is Hitchcockian cinema at its finest. The cast is very good as is the location photography. The writing is sharp and the direction tight. The movie also has a terrific (and often misunderstood) ending. The ending of this film has been discussed for many moons in this house. "Cloak & Dagger" is a one of a kind movie that is excellent every step of the way.
As good as its title
"My Husband's Killer Girlfriend" is a solid Lifetime movie. It has a good story, tight direction and a very likeable cast. The cast goes a long way in making a movie like this enjoyable. The entire cast does a nice job, especially Cindy Busby. Busby really delivers the goods in this movie. "My Husband's Killer Girlfriend" is a satisfying watch. Honorable mention: a dreamy Chelsey Reist. .
Robin Hood: Men in Tights (1993)
Watchable but not very funny
"Robin Hood: Men in Tights" plays less like a Mel Brooks movie and more like one of those "Hots Shots"/ "Scary Movie" type comedies. There's nothing wrong with those movies (I like a lot of them) it's just that I expect more from Mel Brooks. The cast (including the always welcome Avery Schreiber) sure is game. They all do a nice job. The cast is actually funnier than the material they are given. Most of the jokes are corny and pretty lame. That said, "Robin Hood: Men in Tights" is not the worst way to spend a lazy afternoon. Honorable mention: a dreamy Amy Yasbeck.
Child's Play 3 (1991)
A solid Chucky effort
"Child's Play 3" may not be one of the best in the series but it's still a satisfying watch. The story moves well, the cast is fine and the kill scenes don't disappoint. What more can you ask from a Chucky movie?
The Lone Ranger (2013)
"The Lone Ranger" is a criminally underrated movie. It is a fun ride almost every step of the way. Sure, the scenes from the 1930's don't work as well as they should have but the rest of the movie is excellent. The jokes are funny and the action is well staged and exciting. The cast is top-notch, especially Johnny Depp. Depp gives a great performance as he does his best Buster Keaton. It's always a good sign when a longish movie feels short. The first time I saw "The Lone Ranger" was in the theater (AMC Westbury, NY). I've seen it quite a few times since. It never fails to hit the spot.
Hey Good Lookin' (1982)
I like this one too
I don't know if I'm a fan of Ralph Bakshi or not but I do like a lot of his movies, including "Hey Good Lookin' ". "Hey Good Lookin' " might not be his best film but it's up there. This movie moves well and is never boring. There is always something crazy going on. Maybe it doesn't make sense all of the time but that's not unusual for a Bakshi movie. "Hey Good Lookin' " might not be the first Bakshi movie that I would recommend to a novice but it would probably be the second. Honorable mention: a wildly dreamy Roz. I'd love to meet Bakshi's inspiration for her.
So I Married an Axe Murderer (1993)
A fun watch
"So I Married an Axe Murderer" may not be a classic but it's still pretty funny. I first saw this movie in the theater (MovieWorld, Douglaston, NY). Then I saw it a bunch of times on cable. Today was this first time I've seen it in a while. There are a lot of laughs in this movie. The cast is very good and then all get their time to shine. "So I Married an Axe Murderer" may not be one of Mike Myer's best movies but it's a funny one that I need to watch more often. Honorable mention: Myers' dad.
The Hanging Tree (1959)
A bit of a yawner
"The Hanging Tree" doesn't work as well as it should. It has a pretty good story and nice location photography. There are also a few nice moments here and there but, overall, the movie isn't that satisfying. A big problem is the casting of Maria Schell and Ben Piazza. Neither of those two are very interesting. Their roles are too important and neither of them are up to the task. "The Hanging Tree" is heavy on melodrama and light on action. I won't be be revisiting this movie anytime soon.
Child's Play 2 (1990)
My favorite Chucky
"Child's Play 2" is a rock solid sequel. It continues the story and ups the ante along the way. It's well produced and directed. The cast is also very good, especially Alex Vincent and Christine Elise. The script is strong with very little, if any, downtime. No matter who times I see "Child's Play 2" it never fails to deliver the goods.
Okay but forgettable
"Ava" is a okay time killer. The cast and the well staged action are almost enough to make it worth watching. The story is kind of weak and left me behind for a while. The movie also felt longer than its running time. I never felt like turning it off while I watched "Ava" but I have a feeling I won't be visiting it again.