Monthly Archives: November 2007

Forced Vengeance – 1982 – James Fargo

88m.jpgChuck Norris, need I say more. Hired as a heavy for a casino in Macau, the family he works for are all murdered bar one, the swinger daughter. He’s forced into vengeance, albeit reluctantly. Some hilarious narratives by Chuck himself.

Brian Murray

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Evan Almighty – 2007 – Tom Shadyac

10m3.jpgA better follow-up to the original Bruce Almighty, which shows the anchorman-turned senator trying his hand at making an Ark, and becoming Noah, all in the name of God. A biblical story told in a lighthearted manner. Even anti-Christs may find this inoffensive.

Brian Murray

Hot Fuzz – 2007 – Edgar Wright

10m2.jpgBritain’s most straight-laced copper, Sgt. Nicholas Angel (Simon Pegg) is booted off to sleepyville, somewhere in rural England run by the NWA. Loaded with homages to American cinema and television, especially cop dramas, Hot Fuzz has brilliant moments (running through fences) but is not as funny as it could be –  HF overruns and possibly out of steam -or whatever jokes are made of. JJ

Smokin’ Aces – 2006 – Joe Carnahan

Convoluted and trashy, there are more hit squads in Smokin’ Aces than Baghdad – all with the mission to knock off out of favour Mafia entertainer Buddy ‘Aces’ Israel. Desperately tries to marry style and violence while imitating movies such as Mad Max, Sin City, Lock Stock, Oceans 11-13, but, despite the glut of talent ends up in a rubbish heap.

JJ

Mean Girls – 2004 – Mark Waters

46m.jpgIt’s your typical teen flick – the microcosmic world of an American high school. Lohan, who is beautiful but nice, gets caught up in the wind storm of popularity and becomes a mean girl herself, ditching her true misfit friends in the mean time. It’s not gonna’ win any awards for greatness, but it does what it says on the can! Cristina Pittelli

The Manual – 2003 – Osamu Fukutani

suicidemanualpic1-1.jpgIn 1993 The Complete Manual of Suicide was published in Japan, selling more than one million copies – in 2006 there were 30,000 reported suicides in the country. The Manual, a dramatic interpretation based somewhat on the book, fails to exploit its sensational subject matter. Lacks ambition, originality and focus. JJ

The Duellists – 1977 – Ridley Scott

34m1.jpgAs a period movie The Duellists is close to perfect; some of the still life scenes could have been painted on to the screen. TD revolves around two battle hardy ranking officers in Napoleon’s army (Harvey Keitel, Keith Carradine) and their 15 year myopic enmity, played out in a series of ‘last man standing’ sword fights. Thoroughly humanistic and evocative. One to watch, twice!
JJ