"Thus open the gates of paradise."

In this issue

Film Farm Blowup

07 Apr 2003

Crikey! Under the layers of drywall dust and book catalogs and packs of uncataloged slides, I came across a heap of movie stubs for those features I hadn't reviewed in the last year. It's largely too late for most of it, but you never know when this stuff will show up at your favourite rep cinema, or video rental hut, or curbside blue box.  So here they are, snarky one liners for films I might have otherwise swept under the carpet. 

Amelie (Nov 11, 2001)
A lovely bit of French magic realism.

The Time Machine (March 17, 2002)
I had seen the George Pal version only a couple of weeks before seeing this remake. It completely failed to capture the same sense of dread of the original. 

Chicago (24 March, 2003)
Good fun, but no way was it deserving of the best picture of the year OscarTM. Richard Gere didn't spoil it, and who knew that John Reilly could sing?

Harry Potter And the Something-or-Other (Dec 17, 2002)
Harry saves the day. Again.

Atanarjuat (The Fast Runner) (21 Apr 2002)
"Hey, Atanrjuat! I can see your doodley!"
"Shut up, Flanders."

Hollywood Ending (May 7, 2002)
Umm... Don't tell me... This was a Woody Allen film. And it was about... 92 minutes long? Am I right?

Iron Monkey (Oct 12, 2001)
I loved this movie. It's been on the satellite a bunch of times, and I find it as watchable with each passing viewing. It's a costume drama set in imperial China. The Iron Monkey is a Robin Hood character who takes from the despicable rich and gives to the deserving poor. The martial arts are well choreographed, the characters have at least 1 dimensions, and there is a strong sense of morality. There is just something appealing about a world where someone's virtue can be gauged by their skill in kung fu.

Men With Brooms (March 13, 2002)
Oh dear. I love Molly Parker in just about anything. But -- oh, dear.

Panic Room (Apr 22, 2002)
David Fincher pulls out the same visual tricks he used in "Fight Club", ultimately to less effect. Jodie Foster is a force to be reckoned with, but not here. Please know that I am a great fan of hers, and await the release of each of her films with barely restrained anticipation. Actually, I look forward to her next directorial effort, if the truth be known.

Spiderman (May 17, 2002)
J. K. Simmons steals the show as J. Jonah Jameson. There is only one reason to see this movie, and he is it.

About A Boy (June 10, 2002)
Not bad at all, thought I expect Nick Hornby's book is a somewhat better read than the film.

Star Trek Nemesis (Dec 13, 2002)
Dark, and for once, not like a Next Generation episode where someone simply forgot to call "time". 

Lord Of The Rings -- The Two Towers (Dec 19, 2002)
Am slightly irritated that I now associate the words "two towers" more strongly with the ex-World Trade Center in New York than with the novel of the same name. Still. You can't buy that kind of publicity.