MOVIES IN BRIEF 2004 - Exactly all the movie news you need about only the movies you need to know about, something like that...

Paris, je t'aime - Got my ticket!!

Elektra - Not affiliated with the record company, or Will Success Spoil Jennifer Garner?

Racing Stripes - Or as Daily Variety must've dubbed it, Z-Biscuit.  Poor Bruce Greenwood!  The audience I saw the trailer with was a little skeptical.  

Fat Albert - If this does well, director Joel Zwick is going to be hailed as nothing less than The New God of Second Chance Directors.  Also, I'm a little disappointed because I thought Edmond Dantes had something to do with the script.

The Machinist - Christian Bale does a reverse-Raging Bull. (Damn!  Drudge beat me to it.)  He'd get the Academy Award for Best Dietitian if such a thing existed.  See also Thinner.

Sideways - Well, Payne better not screw up a Rex Pickett novel like Hollywood has done time after time after time, that's all I gotta say about that!  You gotta admire the risky casting, though.  I mean, Thomas Haden Church?  What's he done lately?

National Treasure - Whew.  For a second there I thought it was a serious picture.

Shall We Dance?  Nah.  Remake of Autumn in New York.

Seed of Chucky - The TV ads said "Britney Spears does not appear in this film."  I don't know what that's all about, but if she's not in it then it's not really a horror flick.

Saw - Well, ya gotta like the title, anyway.  I guess.  And remember!  You can't spell Cary Elwes without it!

The Gate II - In keeping with the Halloween theme.  An oldie, but you can't totally hate any movie in which money literally turns to shit.

Stage Beauty - For a second, I thought it was Vanity Fair!  I can honestly say I've seen nothing else from this particular director...

Well, at least Darren Aronofsky's keeping busy, if nothing else...

Hide and Seek - Wow!  A feel-good movie!  I'd follow Dakota Fanning to hell and back; except maybe Cat in the Hat and Tomcats...

After The Sunset - Brett Ratner does The Big Bounce.  Or is it Tequila Sunrise?  Anyway, apparently he's not helming Hong Kong Phooey after all.  He's decided he's tired of making blockbusters...

The Sandlot 2 - The Sandlot 2?  The Sandlot 2?!!  Well, the country has been through a lot since the first Sandlot, but I'll only consider seeing the sequel if Denis Leary's in it!!

Taxi - ... Driver?

Friday Night Lights - Overcome ... by ... white-ocity!  I've never seen so many white people in a movie since Ernest Goes to Jail!

Paparazzi - Yeah, more like Flop-a-razzi!

Mr. 3000 - America, what do you want from me?!

The Forgotten - Joseph Ruben did it again!  He did it with The Good Son and Money Train and Sleeping with the Enemy... they were all #1 in their first weekends, right?

Ladder 49 - Thanks to 9/11, it's time to revisit Backdraft anew.

Shark Tale - Perhaps it's the lighter side of Finding Nemo.  Gee, will we hear again about how the animators draw the characters to look like the people who supply their voices?  I wonder what Will Smith thinks of his character!

I Heart Huckabees - Ask for it by name.  David O. Russell is back and better than ever!  Although it looks a bit like he's copying The Royal Tanenbaums.  Also, seeing Jason Schwartzman in a movie is not a reason I go to the theaters these days.

Celsius 41.11 - Sounds like a real piece of shit.  As usual, the Republicans have the common touch.  I believe that's 105.8 Fahrenheit, in other words, the current temperature of America thanks to Bush.  To help it out, they'll have it on a double bill with Team America: World Police.

Fahrenhype 9/11 - Ooh!  Clever.  Now THAT'S what I love about the Republicans.  The name-calling.  Well, it's nice that the Repubes can feel good about themselves again, but I don't know.  I don't think there's any lies in Fahrenheit 9/11.  I mean, how hard is it to believe that Republicans are greedy, evil bastards?  And the ones in the White House are pretty bad, too...

National Lampoon's Gold Diggers - Based on a Post-It note by P.J. O'Rourke.  Even I'm thinking, hey National Lampoon: it's time to call it a day.  Just subsist on the royalties from Animal House for a long while, and don't make any more movies like this one.  It's just sad.  More than anything, it's just sad.

Shaun of the Dead - Damn!  They stole my idea.  Peter Jackson has a new career now: an Ain't It Cool style endorser of new horror movies.

Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow - Famous scientists around the world have mysteriously disappeared.  What criminal mastermind is behind it?  My money's on Microsoft.

From producer Mel Gibson comes... PAPARAZZI! - First the Road Warrior takes on Jesus, now he's taking on his greatest nemesis yet: the Paparazzi that must constantly hound him, as a big time celebrity.  Bet they'll leave him alone now!  Mel's hairdresser Paul Abascal gets the blame for directing here; what, Helgeland was so busy?!  Apparently, Clooney, Cruise, Kurt Russell and Vince Vaughn ALL turned down the lead, but the lead was bravely picked up by a guy who earned raves for playing a Skinhead in Higher Learning... Cole Hauser?  Who's that?  Who cares, just as long as he doesn't pull a Scott Bairstow.  Fingers crossed!

Wicker Park - Oh boy!  The new Hartnett movie.  At least this time he's not getting dragged down by Harrison Ford.  Oh yeah, I don't know what to expect from Shaggy here, what with Without a Paddle being out concurrently.  Night and day?  I can't take it!!!!!!

Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2 - Child abuse!  Could be the next Spy Kids franchise, but we'll have to wait 5 more years for the third one.

Suspect Zero - I guess it's a good idea.  Better be careful, though.  This could lead to Suspect Zero vs. Seven, or Suspect Zero vs. Hannibal...

Exorcist: The Beginning - This is getting out of hand!  When is William Peter Blatty going to get a chance to adapt his not-so-famous children's book?

Cellular - Even die-hard Basinger fans are skipping this one.

King Arthur - Guess it didn't make Pirates money, huh?  On the positive side, Keira Knightley is the reincarnation of Xena.

Alien Vs. Predator - Two of cinema's bloodthirstiest baddies ever team up to make ... a PG-13 movie!  What a rip-off!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Team America: World Police - Looks like another one of those movies where, if it's bad, it's the audience's fault, not the filmmakers'.  I don't know.  Maybe I'm just being contrary, but it seems a little politically motivated to me.  Look for it around election day!

Garden State - Every couple of months or so, a film comes along that achieves critical mass among critics and generates that kind of buzz people are looking for: that hot new movie that is fresh and original, and whatever virtuous attributes are hot at that moment.  My own theory is that it's part of Natalie Portman's Star Wars salary: she can't have points on any of the Star Wars movies, but she can on this film, so you better believe she's going to be on the talk shows promoting the hell out of it!!!  (See also Highway 61 and Sunshine State)

Star Wars 3: Revenge of the Sith - Well, better stake my claim now.  My review is as follows: Take the word 'Sith' and move the 'h' in between the 's' and the 'i'.

Ocean's 12 - Get used to it.

The Bourne Supremacy - Featuring Eomer as Brad Pitt.  Wonder what the third one's gonna be called?

Vacuuming Completely Nude In Paradise - Gotta love that title!

M. Night Shyamalan's The Village - Don't care.  The umpteenth nomination for Deakins.

Harold And Kumar Go To White Castle - A cross between Harry And Walter Go To New York, and CRAP!

Sleepover - Someone's answer to Mean Girls.

Resident Evil 2 - Never too soon to start the ad campaign.  It wouldn't be the same without you, Milla!

America's Heart & Soul - This movie is NOT for children.  Louis Schwartzberg made his deal with the Devil to get into the DGA, but can you blame him?  He worked on The Famous Teddy Z, for Christ's sake!  He's way long overdue!!  I don't know where this film is playing, but I'm sure they'll be showing it at the Republican National Convention; it would be nice if the people in the film were a little more clean cut, though.

Catwoman - This movie is not for children!

The Notebook - Memo to Gena: Gena, honey, you better watch out or you're going to end up taking direction from Nick's kids!  My God!  Directed by THREE generations of Cassavetes's!

I, Robot - Give us something we haven't seen before!  As the release date approaches, the ad campaign seems to be entering a new plane of desperation...

White Chicks - Time to play a game.  If this film could've been released at any time in history, when would've been the perfect time?  I'm thinking either sometime in the 1970s, or when In Living Color first hit... As long as they're still working on that Homey the Clown movie, I'm happy.

The Terminal - Doesn't do anything for me.  Is it Spielberg does They Shoot Horses, Don't They? or what?

The Door in the Floor - I don't know.  There's just something about John Irving.  Besides, are they talking about an attic?  What kinda meshuggah's got a door in their floor?

Little Black Book - Looks like a very funny, entertaining movie.  Think I'll skip it.

The Spongebob Squarepants Movie - Cute trailer.

The Manchurian Candidate - That's right, there's a new one, folks.  Get used to it.

Ladder 49 - Just when you thought Backdraft was enough...  Looks like this will do for firefighting what Driven did for race car driving.  Also, a father and son-style relationship between Travolta and Phoenix, as there was between Stallone and hunky Kip Pardue.  What a shame that Pardue is doomed to a lifetime of character actor roles while what's his name is a star... 'Dude, where's my car?'Ashton Kutcher!  That's it.

Wimbledon - Kirsten Dunst's down-time project between Spider Mans, or: Don't let the international tennis setting fool you.  It's really quite a simple love story!  Or, memo to Mr. Loncraine: You bounced back with Band of Brothers.  DON'T SCREW THIS UP!!

De-lovely - Aww!  Isn't that cute?  Winkler thinks he's an auteur.

The Chronicles of Riddick - With Judi Dench as Gandalf.

Napoleon Dynamite - Whew!  For a minute there I thought it was another Broken Lizard production.

Dodgeball - Sequel to Zoolander?  An Adam Sandler production?  A sequel to the big dodgeball scene in Billy Madison?  More questions than answers, any way you slice it...

Garfield - Call me a purist, but a Garfield movie's not a Garfield movie without Lyman.

The Evil That Men Do - More timely than ever.

Fahrenheit 9/11 - Ironically, Moore's going to vote for Bush.  I mean, he has to!  If Bush loses this election, Moore's screwed!

Breakin' All The Rules - Well, what can you say?  Taplitz's still got it!

Man on Fire - I don't know.  I think I'll wait for the Playstation 2 version.

Troy - Too late, there's already a bunch of new movies out.

The Day After Tomorrow - You can't get this kind of publicity!  Hey, whatever movie the Bush Administration doesn't want me to see, I'm so there!  That, and Fahrenheit 9/11...

Soul Plane - Snoop Dogg can do no wrong, but he's trying.

Alexander (Stone) vs. Alexander (Luhrmann) - Who cares?

Shrek 2 - Someone at DreamWorks is gonna get fired if it's not #1 opening weekend.

Anchorman - Well, there's no doubt about it.  Will Ferrell is the new Jim Carrey.

The Day After Tomorrow - Mother Nature: the only mass murderer who never goes to trial.

The Day After Tomorrow - What, no main character named Tatopoulos?

"Shorties Watchin' Shorties" - Will go the way of "Straight Plan for the Gay Man".

13 Going on 30 - Doesn't live up to the phrase.

Faithful - I haven't thought about this movie in years!

New York Minute - Oh, Eugene Levy!  Did you need the money?

Seeing Other People - From the director of 'Sorority Boys' - well, in my book, they shouldn't emphasize that in the ads.

Onimusha 3 - Okay, it's a video game, but Jean Reno!  His best work since Léon aka The Professional.

Assault on Precinct 13 - A remake of a John Carpenter movie?  C'mon... Okay, we'll do it on one condition: don't mention it's a remake of a John Carpenter movie.

Van Helsing - Might go to see it!  I mean, get a haircut, you hippie!

Bobby Jones, Stroke of Genius - Love how they're trying to tie it in to The Passion of The Christ: As pure cinema, it's an Immaculate Sand-Trap-tion!  But I think if it's a hit, it'll be even worse for Rowdy Herrington, who up until now seemed to enjoy obscurity just fine.

Laws of Attraction - Average, but you gotta like that casting, right?  Right?!

Envy - I hope this isn't another one of those damn screenplays that's been sitting around for 25+ years, just waiting to be made!!!  Okay, to be fair...

Mean Girls - Finally, an almost normal family movie...  Not technically a sequel to Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen, but might as well be.

Godsend - A superhero movie without superheroes!

Johnson Family Vacation - Maybe now we can forget about the other Vacation movies for a while...

Home on the Range - Not economically viable.

The Alamo - Like The Passion of The Christ, The Alamo's stirring up some controversy of its own, and that's just over the budget.  Let's see how long these links last: (1), (2),...

The Whole Ten Yards - What, they can't resurrect the Black Dude?  Well, at least he's getting work...

The Girl Next Door - Features TV ads with unusually enthusiastic testimonials.  Why, they don't even say "From the director of 'The Animal'"!

Coffee and Cigarettes - Jarmusch returns to his roots, so to speak.

Ella Enchanted - Let the clones begin!  Lord of the Rings meets Moulin Rouge.

Hellboy - PerlmanDel Toro.  Together again for the third time. (Blade II, Cronos being the other two)  However, I'm kinda leery of any superhero having something to do with the Nazis.

The Punisher - 33 million dollars of Box Office powerhouse!  If this doesn't make Thomas Jane a star, well, guess he'll just have to keep trying.  But, the third time with Travolta's a charm, right?... Anyway, the point is it seems a little ironic to me that Lions Gate Films, a company owned by Robert Altman, would make a film directed by Jonathan Hensleigh, the directorial equivalent of the guy at the end of 'The Player' calling girls on the phone and asking them if they're hot.

--CABLE, etc.--

Crimson Tide - Rick Schroeder?!!

3000 Miles To Graceland - Kevin's way of saying, I give up!  I'm not going to try to please the critics anymore!  Unfortunately, this film didn't please the public, either.

The Jimmy Show - Very depressing for a film about a stand-up comedian.

Suspect - The movie that led to the creation of Judicial Watch.

Baby's Day Out - Well, hey!  Just because it's a bad movie doesn't mean they're gonna stop showing it on cable!

Copycat - AKA Ernest Is A Serial Killer.

Gunmen - I think you hear Denis Leary knocking, folks, and I think he's coming in, and he's bringing Highlander and Baadasssss and Big Bad Mama and ... ah, skip it.  No cure for cancer, folks.

The Duchess and the Dirtwater Fox - Another Butch Cassidy-Title spinoff, with Goldie Hawn as Mae West.

My Blue Heaven - AKA Witness Protection 101.  The thing that would've made the movie perfect is at the end if someone assassinated Vinnie Antonelli at the ballpark.

Air Rage - Bania!

Lifeforce - According to my 13 year old nephew, the coolest movie ever!

Wild America - Cinema of the Damned.

Starship Troopers 2: The Re-Budgeting - Whoops!  I'm a Director, or quite possibly the world's finest film adaptation of Robert Heinlein.

Léon aka The Professional - Thankless role for Audrey!

Speedway Junky - with Daryl Hannah as Tawny Kitaen.

The Third Wheel - My God!  An obscure Matt Damon / Ben Affleck picture!  And of course we must not forget Mitch-A-Palooza.

Love Don't Cost a Thing - aka Booty: The Motion Picture.  Good double bill with Bring It OnTROYBEYER4EVER

Who Framed Roger Rabbit? - If it were being made today, Santino would be a figment of Valiant's imagination.

An Everlasting Piece - Barry Levinson directing a film in a dangerous genre: the Almost Totally Obscure film.

The Fugitive - Holds up pretty well.  Andrew Davis liberated from the Seagal Shackles, Tommy Lee Jones giving a tongue in cheek performance, and he actually looks sorta young!

Don't Be A Menace To South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood - Whew, what a screenful.  This wasn't filmed on 16mm, was it?  Follows one of the rules of comedy: when Loc Dog fills out his job application, the interview part covers new and separate comedic ground.  Avoid redundancies, kids.

The Reincarnation of Peter Proud - And it'll make your peter proud, too!

The Pope Must Die(t) - Sequel to Nuns on the Run.

Ulee's Gold - Best beekeeping movie ever, although Clint Eastwood in the title role might've been better.

Chain Reaction - Dig that 80s style soundtrack, dude!

Above The Law - Interesting mix of boilerplate cop movie clichés and local Chicago flavor.  Jim Belushi looked so young!

Gang Related - Interesting supporting cast in this L.A. Confidential lite.  In every scene with James Earl Jones every other actor at some point goes "Wow!  What's James Earl Jones doing in this turkey?"

X-Men 2: X-Men United - Feige!

Kill Bill Vol. 1 - Now, I don't know much about filmmaking, but I do know this: you don't say in the opening credits "The 4th film by..."!!!!

The Goonies - My God!  It's like they filmed my childhood!

Along Came Polly - John Hamburg had to remind Ben Stiller "Ooh!  Ooh!  I'm a director, too!  Can I do this one?"

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