Sunday, October 23, 2005


Rating: C-

Doom revolutionized video games as we know it as one of the first and the best at the time first person shooter. Doom the movie will not do the same thing for horror/action movies.

Doom is the story of a group of Marines, led by the Rock, who travel to Mars via some sort of stargate to quelch some sort of outbreak at a research facility. They get a lot more than they bargin for as characters from the game attack. You know that there will be tons of shooting, big guns, machismo for days, blood and guts, and lots of death, but what you might not know from the ads is the focus of this movie is not the Rock so much as it is on Karl Urban and his sister Die Another Day's Rosamund Pike. She's actually the second James Bond alum to be in a video game movie. Colin Salmon, who plays Charles Robinson from MI6 was in Resident Evil and gets chopped to little bits by the lasers. This is a dirty trick last seen in Stealth, advertised as a Jamie Foxx movie, only to fool us into seeing a horrible Josh Lucas flick.

This type of movie draws inevitable comparisons to others of the same ilk. The squad of marines does not nearly have the same charisma or likableness of say, the team in Predator. Also, the basic plot and pretty much everything is a Resident Evil clone, to be honest. This movie is extremely predictable. I read in Entertainment Weekly that there is some big twist at the end that you won't see coming, but I really didn't notice anything, and you probably won't either.

The movie loses most of is respectability when it switches into full-on video game mode for a segment where it looks like you're really playing the game on the big screen. There are a few nice gamer touches like shooting your own reflection on a wall, but for the most part, it's laughable.

The special effects are nice, but don't expect much from the plot or it's actors. It seems we say that a lot nowadays. I don't see the Rock following Arnold into politics mostly because Arnold at least had successful movies and even though they were over the top and cheesy, they reveled in their outlandishness and never took themselves that seriously. The Rock should take a page from that, or try a different style of movie. He was great in Be Cool.

Skip this one. There are much better movies out there and need some more attention than this heavily promoted bloated, predictible, effects laden popcorn flick. Now on to the Halo movie...


Rating: C-

Kiera Knightley gets down and dirty in Domino. Domino is the story of Domino Harvey, Ford model turned bounty hunter. I've seen pictures of the real Domino, and trust me, Kiera Knightly is so much hotter. The release date of this movie was pushed back a few months due to the untimely death of the real Domino. Oh well. This movie should have been pushed all the way out of theaters.

We're taken through the life of Domino through a "movies for dummies" type fashion. Knightly narrates every little detail including who everyone is, what they're doing, and why. Each narration is accompanied with text of the names, freeze frames on the important parts, and awkward camera work. Even with the instruction, the plot is a little confusing. Mickey Rourke continues his basic character trend playing Domino's mentor in the bounty hunting business. Others making appearances are Dabney Coleman in a fantastic role as a sleezy casino owner, Lucy Liu as a federal agent who does little but sit and talk and sharpen her pencil, Delroy Lindo as the big boss of the bounty hunters, Christopher Walken as a reality show producer, and Jacqueline Bisset as Domino's mom. Two of the best roles fall to 90210 alums Ian Zering (I thought you were dead) and Brian Austin Green playing themselves as hosts of the bounty hunting reality show featuring Domino.

There's lots of swearing, shooting, blood and guts, and nudity (yes guys, Kiera gets topless, but it happens near the end, and sitting through all of this to get to it is honestly not worth it). The plot is confusing, and the camera work is annoying. If you wanna see it, just wait for DVD and then steal one from Best Buy.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Into The Blue

Rating: C-

As far as I'm concerned, the only reason to see this movie is Jessica Alba wet and wearing next to nothing. And that's why I went. And that's what I got. And that's about the only good thing in this disaster of a remake. At least I wasn't disappointed in that aspect.

Into the Blue is a remake of the 1977 movie, The Deep. It's the story to two impossibly hot people (Alba and Paul Walker) who live in a trailer and dive for sunken treasure in the Bahamas. Trouble insues when Walker's brother (Scott Caan) and some chick show up from New York for vacation. They go diving and find a long lost ship that if brought up, would set them up for life. A snag in the plan occurs when they happen on a wreck of a drug dealer's plane full of cocaine. And the tug of war or what is easy and what is right and what you really want begins. Do they try to sell the dope in order to raise the money to get the shipwreck? Do they call the cops even though most of the them are crooked apparently? Who knows? Who cares, just get Jessica Alba back in the water again.

The movie takes a very long time to gather steam, and by the end, you really don't care who is on whose side or what happens or whatever. The landscapes are nice to look at, and there are hot folks for both men and women to gaze apon. Josh Brolin is also around as a rival sunken treasure hunter.

Skip this one and watch it in the darkness of your bedroom on DVD so you can pause it on Alba in her itsy bitsy bikini. mmmmmmmm...

The Greatest Game Ever Played

Rating: B

One glance at this movie's preview will tell you that this is a typical Disney flick. There is a young person who is in a lower class of folks who is trying to move up in the world, and everyone else is holding him back including the higher class of folks, his "honest wage" father, and some other snotty kids. In true Disney fashion, it is his mother and some old mysterious guy that are behind him to help him ultimately succeed.

Having said that, director Bill Paxton does a very good job in building the suspense, and in developing the characters as much as he can in the restrictive Disney mold. Shia LeBeouf goes from digging holes to filling them with golf balls as Francis Ouimet, a child prodigy in golf that took on the big wigs at the 1913 US Open. Don't look into the history of this true story, for it will ruin the ending of the movie.

Not a bad, but a slightly forgettable movie that has a predictable ending, but does make up for it with wonderful shots of the golf rounds. It has a running time of close to 2 hours, where the majority of it is spent on the tournament itself. There is no real bad guy except for class warfare. The main message is that you can be or do whatever you want, no matter what society says. It's the American Dream told Disney style.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005


Rating: A+

For me, this is the best movie I have seen this year. I have to admit, had I not been given the DVD of the series, Firefly, upon which this movie is based, I don't know if I would have liked it as much as I did. So i recommend you find one of your sci-fi geek friends to borrow the DVD's from and check it out. It's worth it.

Serenity is the continuing adventures of the crew of the Firefly class spaceship, Serenity. The series lasted for only 11 episodes (14 total, but only 11 made it to American TV), and was the brainchild of Buffy and Angel creator Joss Whedon. I won't bore you with all the details, but basically the captain of the ship, Malcom Reynolds (Nathon Fillion), and his first mate, Zoe (The Matrix Reloaded's Gina Torres) fought in a rebel war against the Alliance, which consists of the US and China, and ultimately lost. People have left Earth due to overpopulation and I suspect global warming, and they have colonized different planets. Mal and Zoe have been running around doing "jobs" to make money while avoiding the Alliance. They are joined by Wash(Alan Tudyk), the ship's able pilot and Zoe's husband, Jayne (My Bodyguard's Adam Baldwin), a mercinary who will stab you in the back if the price is right, but is not too bright in the head, and Kaylee (Jewel Staite), the undersexed engineer.

The crew picks up two additional passengers, a doctor named Simon (Sean Maher), and his mentally disturbed, courtesy of the Alliance, sister River (Summer Glau). We don't know what exactly what has happened to River, but we do know that it wasn't good, and it leads to mucho trouble.

The movie picks up about 6 months after the series, with Simon and River trying to find out what happened to her. It must be pretty good since the Alliance has sent an Operative (Love Acutally's Chiwetel Ejiofor), a man who truely believes that by killing the sinful, he can make the universe free of sin, to kill River.

This movie has everything. There are parts where you will laugh out loud and cry out loud. Cheer and cringe. It's fantastic. The chemisty between the members of the crew is palatible and believable. The main focus is on Mal, River, and Simon, but while the other crew members fade a bit, they each have their opportunity to shine, and boy do they.

The running time is just under 2 hours, but it seems to fly by. The space fight sequences are shot with none of the dizzyingness of Star Wars Ep III. Very well done. You really care about the characters and what happens to each.

Very good movie, and I will definately be at the theater again to see this one. I don't give out many A+'s, but when I do, it is deserving. Just see the series before you see the movie. It does nothing but enhance the experience.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

A History Of Violence

Rating: B+

Strange things are going on in Aragon's life in A History Of Violence, a movie many critics are picking as one of the best movies of 2005. Viggo Mortensen plays Tom Stall, small town family man. He runs a diner, placates his daughter's fears of monsters in her closet, tries to give advice to his son, and makes out with his wife, Edie (Maria Bello). Things are pretty much normal in Tom's life until one night when two toughs try to rob his diner and harm his customers. Tom goes nuts and dispatches both of them with relative ease, making him a hero.

All the media attention brings many changes to Tom's life, the most disturbing is the appearance of three mysterious men in a Chrysler 300 at the diner who think that Tom is someone called Joey. A severely scarred Carl Fogarty, (Ed Harris - he's never looked better) is the leader of these man and bound and determined that Tom is who he says he is. The question is, does Tom hold a secret past or is all this just a case of mistaken identity?

From here, the movie takes many twists and turns, but the outcome is somewhat predictable. It is a very graphic movie, both violently and sexually. There is a ton of blood and goo and a good bit of nudity. These are all good things.

Mortensen delievers a wonderful performance as the tortured Tom Stall, trying to protect his family and trying to figure out what the heck is going on. Bello is fine as the confused wife looking at her husband in a different light. Harris is great as the mobster out for revenge, even if he has the wrong man. Also, William Hurt is the best he has been in years.

A very enjoyable movie, even if it's not as twisty and convoluted as I had hoped it would be. It's worth checking out.