Thursday, February 28, 2008

Old School (2003)


Mitch, Frank and Beanie are disillusioned with their personal lives begining when Mitch's nymphomanic girlfriend, Heidi, cheats on him, then former party animal Frank gets married, but unwilling to get go of his wild life, and Beanie is a family man seeking to reclaim his wild and crazy youth. Beanie suggests that they form their own fraternity in Mitch's new house on a college campus to re-live their glory days by bringing together a variety of misfit college students, losers, middle-aged and elderly retirees as their new friends and later try to avoid being evicted by the new Dean of Students, Pritchard, whom still holds a personal grudge against all three of them.

I totally loved “Old School” with a mix of wacky comedy, awesome cameos and some great moments delivered with such comedic timing, from masters of this vein of film.

You know if Will Farrell is in it is going to be a silly, offside, but very funny film. Vaughn is a also a solid bet in these kinds of films, but it was Luke Wilson that took the show for me, with one of the best displays of dry humour in god knows how long.
Old School is a fun film, and has an appeal that spans the generation gaps, so if you want to just have a great laugh this is one of the films to see!


Luke Wilson ... Mitch Martin

Will Ferrell ... Frank Ricard

Vince Vaughn ... Bernard 'Beanie' Campbell

Jeremy Piven ... Dean Gordon 'Cheese' Pritchard

Ellen Pompeo ... Nicole

Juliette Lewis ... Heidi

Leah Remini ... Lara Campbell

Perrey Reeves ... Marissa Jones

Craig Kilborn ... Mark

Elisha Cuthbert ... Darcie

Seann William Scott ... Peppers

Matt Walsh ... Walsh

Artie Lange ... Booker

Patrick Fischler ... Michael

Sara Tanaka ... Megan Huang


Tuesday, February 26, 2008

X-Men (2000)


This classic comic book adaptation for film exploded on the screen, with a league of fans whom emanated from both the comic book medium and the cartoon series. The film was met with both great expectation and great reserve as many hard-core fans expressed concern over how true the “Hollywood” adaptation would stay to the original vein of the X-MEN.
For those who are unfamiliar with the story, the X-men are a league of mutant humans, who believe that coexistence between mutants and humans is not only possible, but worth fighting for. Lead by Professor Xavier, founder of a school for gifted youngsters, aka Mutant adolescents, the X-men stand between Humankind and the ever present threat of war perpetuated by both humans who fear them and the mutants lead by Magneto, a very powerful mutant who believes that the only ay mutant kind will avoid persecution is to dominate the planet, at the cost of all human life.

Regardless of your age, the X-men has something to offer as a film, great action, great tongue in cheek comedy, a love story, a love triangle, pretty people, amazing special effects and of course Wolverine the iconic loner bad-boy, turned tame at the hand of a pretty woman.

On a deeper level the X-men is a look at racial equality, touching on the topic of genocide, fear of the unknown from both an aged angle and that of teen-agers struggling to find their place in the world while suffering racial persecution.
With that said, the X-men does not portray humankind as the bad guy, but rather tackles the close minded, ignorance and fear of that which is different which breeds racism.

The Plot:

Based off of the comic book. The time is the near future. There is a rift between normal humans and mutants. These mutants have gifts, these gifts can give them supernatural powers. Professor Charles Xavier has established a school where mutants can feel accepted and can learn to control their gifts. One day, a young girl calling herself "Rougue" runs away from home when she discovers her mutant gift. Then, she met a loner named Logan, then they were attacked by a group of mutants and were discovered by some of Proffessor X's students. They found out that the mutants that attacked them were a part of another mutant organization lead by "Magneto". Magneto believes that this dispute between humans and mutants will escalate into an all out war. He has also built a device that will unnaturally mutates humans. Now, Professor X's students must use their powers to stop Magneto, before it is too late.


Hugh Jackman ... Logan / Wolverine

Patrick Stewart ... Professor Charles Xavier

Ian McKellen ... Eric Lensherr / Magneto

Famke Janssen ... Jean Grey

James Marsden ... Scott Summers / Cyclops

Halle Berry ... Ororo Munroe / Storm

Anna Paquin ... Rogue / Marie D'Ancanto

Tyler Mane ... Sabretooth

Ray Park ... Toad

Rebecca Romijn ... Mystique (as Rebecca Romijn-Stamos)

Bruce Davison ... Senator Kelly

Matthew Sharp ... Henry Gyrich

Rhona Shekter ... Magneto's Mother

Kenneth McGregor ... Magneto's Father

Shawn Roberts ... Rogue's Boyfriend


Monday, February 25, 2008

The Number 23 (2007)


I love movies based on obsession, but to be frank when I thought of watching Jim Carey in one i was more than a little thrown off on the idea.

The number 23, is the story of a man Walter Sparrow, he lives a normal life, beautiful wife, happy marriage and a son that loves him. Until one day a series of events, perpetuated by a simple choice lead him to find a book. The book is title “The number 23”.
The book is the story of obsession, murder and suicide all based around the number 23, as walter reads the novel he begins finding similarities to his own life and that of the narrator. What starts as a simple series of co-incidences quickly turn into obsession as Walter begins to find that there is more to the number 23 than meets the eye...

Jim Carey is fantastic in his role of Walter Sparrow, but with that said i think that this would have been a role better served by a less type cast actor. This is a role that would have been much more suited to the likes of Tim Robbins or Johnny Depp, as Carey’s comedic status and iconic face, draw away from the intensity of the film. This is by no means a slight on Carey’s acting ability, but as with one of the films main themes, we are dictated not by fate but the choices we make, and Jim you chose to be the funny man in films, you should stick to that.

I was also impressed with the films use of both contemporary film style and the infusion of noir. I felt that this created enough balance between the light and dark to leave the viewer feeling not too overwhelmed by the blackness of the story line.

I would totally recommend “the number 23” to anyone who enjoys a psychological thriller, with a bunch of twists and turns thrown in

Jim Carrey...Walter Sparrow / Fingerling

Virginia Madsen...Agatha Sparrow / Fabrizia

Logan Lerman...Robin Sparrow

Danny Huston...Isaac French / Dr. Miles Phoenix

Lynn Collins...Suicide Blonde / Mrs. Dobkins / Young Fingerling's Mother

Rhona Mitra...Laura Tollins

Michelle Arthur...Sybil

Mark Pellegrino...Kyle Flinch

Paul Butcher...Young Fingerling / Young Walter

David Stifel...Hotel Clerk

Corey Stoll...Sergeant Burns

Ed Lauter...Father Sebastian

Troy Kotsur...Barnaby

Walter Soo Hoo...Chinese Restaurant Owner

Patricia Belcher...Dr. Alice Mortimer

On a personal note, I am by no means a superstitious guy, but I watched this film while in transit at Taipei airport, it was 1 am and the place was deserted. When the film ended i looked up at the sign above me and saw something that gave me a moments hesitation and added to the effect of the film.

7+10+6= 23

I thought on it for a moment or two before deciding, it’s just a co-incidence...


Friday, February 15, 2008

The Big Lebowski (1998)

Rating: 9/10... Just watch it!

Coen Brothers Masterpiece.

Bowling, money, family feuds, a missing trophy wife and a rug that really ties it all together nicely!
This is the story of the Dude, one of the laziest men to ever grace the silver screen. A man so content with his life of bowling, smoking weed and drinking White Russians that many would consider him a wasteful bum; which I guess to a degree is exactly what he is, but a bum with principles all the same.
The Dude never wanted much, never had much - except a beat up old car, 2 good friends and a rug that really tied the room together. His life was going along just the way nature intended it too, until one day a simple mix up turned his life up side down...

Jeff bridges was masterful in his portrayal of “The Dude”, stepping away from his usual role of the all-American, mullet donning good guy with a letterman jacket and a dimple ridden grin, for a bath robe, dirty shorts and a goatee. He embodies the washed up hippy in a way that has rarely been seen before, and with such finesse that you begin to wonder, is this the real Jeff Bridges or his he simply a true master of his craft?

The big Lebowski is one of my all time favorite films, combining subtle comedy, insane characters and a web of deceit, all wrapped around the ultimate underdog, The Dude.

Cast List

Jeff Bridges ---Jeffrey Lebowski - The Dude

John Goodman ---Walter Sobchak

Julianne Moore ---Maude Lebowski

Steve Buscemi ---Theodore Donald 'Donny' Kerabatsos

David Huddleston ---Jeffrey Lebowski - The Big Lebowski

Philip Seymour ---Hoffman Brandt

Tara Reid ---Bunny Lebowski

Philip Moon ---Woo, Treehorn Thug

Mark Pellegrino ---Blond Treehorn Thug

Peter Stormare ---Nihilist #1, Uli Kunkel / 'Karl Hungus'

Flea ---Nihilist #2, Kieffer 

Torsten Voges ---Nihilist #3, Franz 

Jimmie Dale Gilmore ---Smokey

Jack Kehler ---Marty

John Turturro ---Jesus Quintana

“ If you pull a gun on me, I take it off you, stick it up your ass and pull the trigger till it goes..CLICK”

The Trailer
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