Movie Reviews

Like Mike

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Like Mike is supposed to be funny and sentimental, and make you want to see NBA basketball games ‘cuz the players are big, bad and sexy. It is and it does. It’s also predictable, shallow and so misogynist it should have a warning to parents. I suggest an addition to the MPAA rating code: PGG […]

Life Or Something Like It

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Since Life or Something Like It was directed by Stephen Herek, who gave us such gems as Rock Star and The Mighty Ducks, and written by John Scott Shepherd, whose only prior offense was the Tim Allen “feel-good” comedy Joe Somebody, saying that the film represents the best of either man’s work is hardly an […]

Life As A House

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It’s an unabashed — and not wholly successful — full-scale assault on the tear-ducts. It aims for the three-handkerchief realm (you didn’t really think I was going to say “three hankie,” did you?), but never gets much beyond one and a half — two if you’re charitable. And what emotional resonance it has is mostly […]

Liam

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Stephen Frears hasn’t made a film this good in ages — maybe not since 1987’s Sammy and Rosie Get Laid and certainly not since 1993’s The Snapper. In fact, in recent years it’s seemed as if much that was so good about Frears’ mid-80s work was his fortuitous teaming with writer Hanif Kureishi on My […]

Legally Blonde

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Well, what do you expect from a director whose only other credential is a short film bearing the title Titsiana Booberini? (Like I could make that up if I tried?) Here’s yet another drop down the mineshaft of modern film comedy. The title says it all and then some, but the filmmakers seemed to think […]

Last Orders

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If we exempt him stepping in to finish Fierce Creatures, Fred Schepisi hasn’t made a movie since 1994’s I.Q., and hasn’t made one nearly as good as Last Orders since 1993’s Six Degrees of Separation. Schepisi’s an uneven filmmaker: For every Six Degrees of Separation, or even a classy spy thriller like The Russia House, […]

Lara Croft: Tomb Raider

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Lara Croft: Tomb Raider seems to be a movie designed first and foremost to prove to the skeptical that there are far worse things awaiting the summer moviegoer than The Mummy Returns. The Mummy Returns was no great shakes, I grant you, but it emerges as the Citizen Kane of summer blockbusters by comparison. It […]

Lantana

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Admirers of Ray Lawrence’s Bliss (and I confess to being a major admirer) may be somewhat startled by his second film, Lantana (named for the pesky, invasive shrub), which arrives a mere 16 years after his debut work. (Prolific the man isn’t.) Less stylish, less playful and certainly a lot less fantasticated, Lantana seems at […]

Kung Pow: Enter The Fist

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Apparently jealous over the fact that Paramount’s Pootie Tang beat out their Freddy Got Fingered as the worst comedy of 2001, 20th Century Fox makes an early bid for that honor in 2002 with Kung Pow: Enter the Fist — and they have done themselves proud. This may not only be 2002’s worst comedy, but […]

Knockaround Guys

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Five minutes into the deplorable Knockaround Guys you know why it sat on the shelf for a couple of years. The movie opens with mobster Teddy Deserve (an embarrassing John Malkovich) trying to force 12-year-old Matty Demeret (Andrew Francis) to shoot the man who — according to Deserve — betrayed the boy’s father. When the […]

Kissing Jessica Stein

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It’s not a perfect movie. It’s not even as good as much of what has been said about it. It can’t seem to decide exactly what it wants to be. It trades too heavily on certain conventions of its genre. And it has an ending that it’s hard not to feel is a cop-out. But […]

Kiss Of The Dragon

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“Martial arts and cinema action superstar Jet Li and visionary filmmaker Luc Besson (The Professional, The Fifth Element) join forces on Kiss of the Dragon,” trumpets the press kit for Kiss of the Dragon — and in a sense, that’s true. Besson did co-produce and co-write the screenplay. However, the direction of the film was […]

Kingdom Come

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The worst thing that can be said about Kingdom Come — that it is a nice, well-intentioned little movie — is unfortunately also the best thing that can be said about it. There’s nothing horribly wrong with the film, yet almost everything about it just feels wrong. Why, for example, take an intimate source play […]

Kate And Leopold

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A complete and almost wholly successful change of pace for director-co-writer James Mangold and the film that might finally transport Hugh Jackman (Swordfish) to the ranks of full-fledged movie star, Kate and Leopold provides the third truly worthy romantic comedy to come out this year. And if it’s not quite in the same league as […]

Kangaroo Jack

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Everybody involved in Kangaroo Jack should be roasted on the barbie, as the Aussies say. Although the movie boasts some bonzer footage of Australia’s outback, plus a trio of farting camels, Kangaroo is a boring, brainless, bodgy waste of money. Worse, Kangaroo is the basest kind of movie rip-off–one aimed at kids. It’s possible to […]

K-Pax

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Though cursed with possibly the worst title in the history of film, threatening to smother in its own high-mindedness, and never getting anywhere near the level of profundity to which it aspires, K-Pax is at least a thoughtful, beautifully acted film with its heart in the right place — most of the time. Anyone who […]

K-19: The Widowmaker

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“I sound more like Boris Badenov than you do!” “No, I sound more like him than you do!” That at least is what I like to think Harrison Ford and Liam Neeson argued about while watching the dailies on this soggy submarine story. Having been subjected to their fluctuating accents in the trailer for K-19: […]

Juwanna Mann

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Juwanna spend 91 minutes watching Miguel A. Nunez Jr. (a supporting and bit-part actor, suddenly — and ill-advisedly — promoted to star status here) learn about the value of teamwork by dressing up as a woman? Juwanna see a lame, unfunny re-hash of Tootsie. played out on a basketball court? Juwanna movie with absolutely no […]

Just Visiting

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Just Visiting is goofy, charming, very sweet. There are beautiful chic women, and chivalric men who don’t bathe much — you guessed right: It’s French! In twelfth-century France, evil witchery causes brave Count Thibault (Jean Reno, Ronin) to hallucinate and kill his beloved bride-to-be, the beautiful Lady Rosalina (Christina Applegate, TV’s Married with Children) on […]

Just Married

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Oh, dear, it’s the film industry’s annual January White Sale — the cinematic equivalent of the bargain table of remaindered books at Barnes and Noble. The only difference is that the movies being hastily dumped into theaters are rarely a bargain. Just Married is certainly no exception, and it’s only distinction lies in the fact […]

Jurassic Park III

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All in all, Jurassic Park III isn’t a bad film … if plot, characterization, believability and originality don’t count. If you can think of the film as an extended amusement-park ride (actually, it often seems to have been inspired by the Dinosaur Encounter at Epcot, except you don’t get sprayed with mist — that’ll happen […]