Aug 31, 2014

Review: The Book Thief (2013)

Will film viewers ever tire of watching dramas set during World War II? I suppose not. With so many different angles and possible stories, it's an unlimited supply of heavy hitting material. The Book Thief is based off of a book by writer Markus Zusak and was released worldwide in 2006. Narrated by Death, it's important to note that it's intended for young adults. These days, YA seems like a synonym for terrible but that's not why I'm bringing it up here. I've never read the book myself anyhow and it did end up with a fair amount of literary awards.

As a WWII movie, The Book Thief has a fair amount of the necessities checked off. It's set in Germany and has some actual German actors. The main characters are all actors pretending to be German but with talented names like Geoffrey Rush and Emily Watson that shouldn't be too much of a problem. It's even scored by the famed John Williams. This is British director Brian Percival's film project to date though. 

Aug 30, 2014

Review: A View to a Kill (1985)

A View to a Kill is the third Bond film to be directed by John Glen out of the five titles he did in succession from 1981 to 1989. It's also his worst performing Bond film, grossing a little less than License to Kill. Not that $152.4 million is anything to sneeze at on a budget of $30 million. What's interesting though is that it held its first premiere in San Fransisco instead of in the UK as usual. This was because of the warm welcome the production got from the mayor at the time who loved Roger Moore and granted all the liberties the crew wanted. It made $50.3 million from the US alone so it was a decision that panned out.

The fourteenth 007 movie also features Roger Moore for the very last time. Most people have a favourite Bond but I like them all, including Moore so I'm sad to see him go. After seven movies, twelve years and finally reaching the ripe old age of 57, I can understand Roger's decision to retire. Apparently he was horrified when he learned that Tanya Roberts' mother was younger than himself which I guess really made him look in the mirror. To be honest his age does get distracting in certain instances. Seeing him performing during action sequences isn't really affected, but when he's getting it on with the ladies? It doesn't feel the same unfortunately. On another sad side note, this is also the final appearance of Lois Maxwell as Miss Moneypenny.

Aug 29, 2014

Review: The Borrowers (1997)

I remember having watched The Borrowers when I was a kid. I think I saw it twice actually. I had a blast watching this movie and I was curious to see how it has held up since then. It was a movie I would quote many times and I even remember having the book read to me by mom. Yes, my mom used to read to my two sisters and I before bedtime. As much as there were times I had wished I could be doing other stuff like watching late-for-a-kid TV or video games, having books read to me did more good than harm in the end.

The Borrowers is full of great English actors. Jim Broadbent, Celia Imrie, Hugh Laurie and a very young Tom Felton. Oh, and American John Goodman. Can't forget him now can we? Looking at director Peter Hewitt's filmography is a little worrisome though because it appears that all he's made that's worthwhile is Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey. Although it's a sequel to a great movie, it's still got its moments. But I mean Garfield? Thunderpants? Zoom? I don't know...

Aug 28, 2014

Review: Lake Placid 3 (2010)

Under the direction of bit actor/B-movie director Griff Furst, here we are at Lake Placid 3. Bringing together a collection of fallen stars and nobodies, it's obviously not a movie to be taken seriously. It is however a money opportunity for the re-branded Syfy as I had said in my review for Lake Placid 2. The budget's gone up a bit and I'm sure that's to account for not one but two "stars."

Michael Ironside was at one time a force with his portrayals of imposing baddies, but he plays the role of town sheriff in LP3. We also get Yancy Butler who is best known as the star of the TV series Witchblade which had a cult following. She fell into legal and drug problems which is a shame and probably never really reached her potential. Unfortunately she hasn't really been able to advance past B-movie parts these days apart from a role in Kick-Ass and Kick-Ass 2.

Aug 27, 2014

Review: Trapped (2002)

Trapped is an abduction thriller with child actor extraordinaire Dakota Fanning playing the main target. With Charlize Theron and Irishman Stuart Townsend rounding out the family, you can just imagine the discussions they had at Sony trying to figure out what actors to cast to appeal to parents and get them to come out to see their movie in theatres. The characters are all beautiful, they're very rich and they live in a beautiful home. How could anyone not identify with them?

The story is based off of a novel called 24 Hours written by Greg Iles who even wrote the script for this film. Maybe the book isn't as guilty of this, but everything in Trapped feels contrived and ironed over by Sony. A thriller's number one goal is to be, well thrilling obviously. Not that feeling contrived is the only problem of Trapped, but it's a major one that kept me from being able to dive head first into the story.

Aug 26, 2014

Review: Lake Placid 2 (2007)

A sequel to Lake Placid eight years later? Who even asked for that? Well the Sci-Fi Channel must have heard someone ask for a sequel. Right? What's crazy is that it must have done pretty well for itself because there are still two more Lake Placid movies that I got to get through.

It's not a stupid idea from a business point of view anyhow. Scale the budget down from that way-too-high-for-TV $35 million of the original movie and bring in someone who's past their prime and would be funny to watch in some sort of horror schlock. In this case we get John Schneider of The Dukes of Hazzard fame.

Aug 25, 2014

Review: Lake Mungo (2008)

Lake Mungo is a mockumentary in name, but it's not a comedic sort in the same vein as This is Spinal Tap or A Mighty Wind. It's a horror/drama mockumentary. It sounds weird but it does end up working quite well. While the format itself is not going to make for the scariest movie known to man, it can get really, really creepy. That's the true strength of Joel Anderson's Lake Mungo.

Lake Mungo did open in its native country and two years later was able to secure theatrical distribution in the United States, courtesy of After Dark Films. Clearly we're talking about a handful of theatres and that's not really surprising. The found footage genre exploded in 2007 with twelve movies and many more followed in the next few years. The market can only withstand so many after all. Lake Mungo isn't a found footage horror movie but it's pretty easy to lump it in with the rest of them at quick glance. The film does however have some slight elements of found footage but in no way does it truly fit into the genre.

Aug 24, 2014

Review: Lulu on the Bridge (1998)

Paul Auster is in fact more of a writer than he is a director. I mean that literally. He's got work that spans from the 80's and onwards about existentialism and the like. I'm not much of a reader clearly because I've never heard of him, but he seems to be pretty decorated if you take a look at his Wikipedia page.

Auster has had some work doing screenplays for movies like Smoke, The Inner Life of Martin Frost as well as story writing credits for some others. Lulu on the Bridge is his first solo directing job and was screened at the 1998 Cannes Film Festival. Despite having some relative name power from the cast, I don't think Lulu on the Bridge ever got distributed in the United States.

Aug 23, 2014

Review: The Hundred-Foot Journey (2014)

Lasse Hallström is a very known quantity. For the most part, he makes feel-good dramas with some relatively good cinematography. There's nothing inherently wrong with that either. On the surface though, it seems like Hallström is treading on ground he's already more than covered with The Hundred-Foot Journey. Remember Chocolat? It's a film about a woman arriving in a conservative French village with her daughter, trying to win them over with chocolate. I guess that's an easy way to sum it up. 

With The Hundred-Foot Journey, it's about a Indian family opening an Indian restaurant right across the street from a traditional French restaurant run by Mme. Mallory who will do anything to keep her restaurant on top. The family also have to win over the townsfolk who have never seen anything like the cuisine they serve before. These are only really surface comparisons and that's a bit unfair I guess.

Aug 22, 2014

Review: The Expendables 3 (2014)

So to preface this review, let me just say that I am an unabashed Expendables fan and a lover of action movies in general. Watching those 80's/90's action movies with Bruce Willis, Sylvester Stallone and my absolute favourite, Arnold Schwarzenegger was for sure one of the big reasons why I became such a big movie lover. I wanted to see every classic, semi-classic and pure garbage action movie ever made. That's why I was so pumped for the first Expendables. It spoke to me, it was like a love letter to everything that was great about action movies. Looking back on it now, it could've been better but The Expendables 2 which came out two years later alleviated quite a few of those problems.

The Expendables 3 has been greeted with a lot of criticism from just about everyone. Its box office opening was also pretty soft and that could potentially make 3 the final film of the series. The makers are pointing their finger at piracy from the big publicized leak some weeks ago while everyone else thinks its the PG-13 downgrade from the original R of the first two films, series fatigue or just plain old mediocrity. Going into The Expendables 3, I put all of that out of my head and geared up to hopefully be entertained.

Aug 20, 2014

Review: What Women Want (2000)

I know he's a controversial figure but I like Mel Gibson as an actor lots. I first really got a thing for him from watching the Lethal Weapon series which he made great alongside Danny Glover. With lots of frenetic energy, it's a great series as far as action goes. You also can't deny just how awesome the Mad Max series is, well the first two anyway.

His career has kind of stalled in the last few years with only a film role a year it would seem, most recently with The Expendables 3. I remember having high hopes for Edge of Darkness from 2010 which was originally a British TV show from the 1980's. Even with Martin Campbell, the series' director, it disappointed. I'll never forget the action hero that Mel Gibson really is though. He's got a lot of charisma and that's why I knew he could handle a movie like What Women Want.

Aug 19, 2014

Review: All Dogs Go to Heaven 2 (1996)

All Dogs Go to Heaven is one of those perfect "not really for kids movies." With a sombre colour palette, some frightening imagery as well as some mature subject matter, it's in no way the ideal movie to introduce your four year-old to movies for the first time. As I said in my review for All Dogs Go to Heaven, I think it's still a great learning tool for younger movie watchers to grow some backbone. You can't grow up if you're only fed jellybeans. You need some red meat after all.

MGM took over production duties from the original and it's pretty clear that they aimed to make All Dogs Go to Heaven 2 a little more friendly for the family movie market. I don't think it's as neutered as people make it out to be, but its edge in comparison to Bluth's entry has been considerably softened. The biggest problem with All Dogs Go to Heaven is that it's so generic. There are some other problems too of course but I guess that's the best way it can be summed up.

Aug 18, 2014

Review: The Lady Vanishes (1938)

Alfred Hitchcock found himself in a pretty interesting spot before having made The Lady Vanishes. He needed a film to fulfill a contract he had with producer Edward Black, who then offered him a project by the name of The Lost Lady which was based off of a book called The Wheel Spins by Ethel Lina White. This would later become The Lady Vanishes and had previously been a failed production. Roy William Neill had begun filming it in Yugoslavia but once officials found out that they were portrayed in a negative light, the team was kicked out of the country. Hitchcock was smart to set to set TLV in a fictional location. After all, everyone was all tense due to the brewing of a World War.

At the same time, the call of the United States was coming strong across the Atlantic. Alfred Hitchcock was adored stateside and Hollywood wanted him to be making movies for them. Beginning in 1939, producer David O. Selznick successfully signed Hitchcock to a seven-year agreement, ensuring his talents would remain in the US. This was following the release of The Lady Vanishes which ended up being a huge success financially and critically. The rest is history.

Aug 17, 2014

Review: Lady Killers (2003)

National Lampoon, a magazine that traces its beginnings to 1970 before ending its publication in 1998. Originally just a collection of crude, sometimes intelligent comedy, it branched out into a variety of media to include film. Movies like Animal House and Vacation look like oddities now if you look at all of the National Lampoons productions and Lady Killers doesn't do anything to dispel that notion.

There are some pretty shoddy productions from National Lampoon throughout its history and that's because anyone could lease the National Lampoon name. Make a bad movie and slap National Lampoon on the poster and there you have it. A funny movie, in theory only though. What a way to ruin a brand eh? I wonder what a touch of quality control could have done. The rights were then bought by a company that named itself National Lampoon Inc. and has made a collection of movies that can summed up as frat boy trash since 2002. Lady Killers was their first film attempt and it looks like it went through a name change once it was released on DVD to Gold Diggers. I'm sticking with its original theatrical title though.

Aug 16, 2014

Review: All Dogs Go to Heaven (1989)

I was born in 1990 but growing up I never got the chance to see All Dogs Go to Heaven. It didn't do incredibly well during its theatrical run but was one of the biggest sellers once it hit the home market with over three million VHS tapes sold in its first week. Ex-Disney animator Don Bluth made quite a name for himself when he left Disney and The Land Before Time is still one of my all time favourites from when I was a kid.

The release of All Dog Go to Heaven was a sad one because of the death of voice actress Judith Barsi who had also voiced Ducky in The Land Before Time. She was murdered by her father along with her mother which is just unbelievably tragic. It's hard not to think about it while watching All Dogs Go to Heaven and it makes a couple of the scenes even more hard hitting.

Aug 15, 2014

Review: The Ladies Man (1961)

I don't have a lot of experience with Jerry Lewis but generally I like him. I've seen him in Martin Scorsese's King of Comedy which isn't at all his typical role and I've also seen him in The Nutty Professor. TNP hasn't aged very well if you ask me but it's definitely better than the modern retelling of the story with Eddie Murphy.

The Ladies Man isn't really the kind of movie that could be very well remade. It takes place in an all women's boarding house with Jerry Lewis playing the most sensitive man on earth. The kind who is reduced to tears multiple times. The way in which The Ladies Man is filmed is really cool because the boarding house set is built as if it were a dollhouse. Apparently the most expensive set for a family comedy at the time, the effect of panning from one room to another without any cuts is nice to watch as is the effect of zooming out and getting long shots of the entire, open-roomed house.

Aug 14, 2014

Review: Music of the Heart (1999)

So it was my girlfriend who picked to watch this movie and as the opening credits are rolling with nice pleasant music, I was dumbfounded to see Wes Craven's name attached to this. Craven does non-horror movies? Since when? Turns out that Music of the Heart is his only non-horror movie and even received some Academy notice. 

As you'd expect of a Craven horror movie, Music of the Heart was released around Halloween in 1999. Its intentions are quite different though. Executive producers Bob and Harvey Weinstein are part of the team that make up the Music of the Heart production, add in Meryl Streep in a starring role and that means there's a strong possibility that Music of the Heart is what you'd call an "Oscar bait" film. November is usually awards season but October 29th isn't so distant from that. There are obviously good and bad Oscar bait films and the question is where does Music of the Heart find itself?

Aug 13, 2014

Review: Never Say Never Again (1983)

I am a huge James Bond fan, through and through. From the greats to the mediocre entries, 007 movies represent a two hour time slot that is guaranteed to be enjoyable for me. At least to a certain extent anyway. I guess Sean Connery is my favourite Bond but honestly all of them have their reasons to be likeable. I'm not one of those pro-Connery or pro-Moore types either. I love them all.

When I first heard about Never Say Never Again, I guess I was scandalized. It's not part of the original EON productions and was born out of Kevin McClory's long legal battle for the film rights of Thunderball. He was one of the original writers of the Thunderball script and once Ian Fleming wrote the book for Thunderball which borrowed heavily from the film script, well that opened the door for McClory to get his foot in.

The whole idea of having gotten away with getting the rights to Thunderball which includes the SPECTRE organization strikes me as opportunistic even if I can understand the reasons behind McClory's beef with Fleming. But really, remaking Thunderball (which is a personal favourite of mine) eighteen years later with Mr. Connery himself coming back?!? It's two parts crazy and one part money-grabbing. The film even made a very impressive profit from its investment and became the highest grossing Bond film which I'm sure really riled up the folks at EON.

Aug 12, 2014

Review: Monster-in-Law (2005)

I had no idea that Jane Fonda had stopped acting for fifteen years before the release of Monster-in-Law. That makes it pretty depressing now when you think about it. She's a legend who comes back to star in what seem like at first glance such a dimwitted romantic comedy? I guess it's an easy way to ease her way back in because really, fifteen years is a long time to not be acting. 

Jane Fonda actually doesn't do that bad of a job in what is a pretty run-of-the-mill affair. The script for Monster-in-Law is far from brilliant but she makes do with what she has to make a couple of amusing moments. It does help that she's alongside Jennifer Lopez who doesn't really make a very good case for herself here. She comes off as very blank and was even nominated for a Razzy for her efforts. I guess the best way to look at Monster-in-Law is a lost opportunity. A faceoff between JLo and Jane Fonda doesn't sound that dumb if you really think about it.

Review: VeggieTales: God Wants Me to Forgive Them!?! (1994)

Here we are back again for some more VeggieTales. One of the amusing things I've noticed about the later VT videos is that they like to take popular stories and adapt them with morally correct vegetables. How about VeggieTales: Minnesota Cuke and the Search for Samson's Hairbrush? It even has the same font as Indiana Jones! The whole VT operation is probably small enough to avoid the ire of big studios but this 1994 entry was also inspired to use some familiar material.

VeggieTales: God Wants Me to Forgive Them!?! uses John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath (basically only in name though) as well the first episode of Gilligan's Island. If you can imagine what a Christian parody of both would be like, well there you have it. That only really goes for the Gilligan part though because The Grapes of Wrath is basically just about a group of grumpy grapes who are mean. Are these spoofs any good? Long story short, not particularly.

Aug 11, 2014

Review: The Ladies Man (2000)

Saturday Night Live has spawned lots of movies based off of its skits. The Blues Brothers is obviously a big one here as is Wayne's World. Make no mistake, there are some pretty awful SNL movies as well but they seem still be able to create their own fans who are quick to defend them. MacGruber is the only one I've seen that I'd lump into the bad category but I know it has its fans though. A Night at the Roxbury anyone?

The question is if The Ladies Man is a good or bad SNL movie. Judging from the critical and audience reception, it would seem like TLM is clearly a bad one. It even ended up being a box office flop at the time. I've pretty much never seen a complete SNL episode in my life but maybe Leon Phelps is a funny recurring character. In fact, I'm sure he is. But as the main character in a feature film? His act gets old real fast.

Aug 10, 2014

Review: La vendedora de rosas [The Rose Seller] (1998)

You know the kind of movies that make you uncomfortable watching them on your high definition TV set while sitting on your comfortable couch? You feel bad about the cool drink you got and the unnecessary snacks close at hand. That's the kind of movie La vendedora de rosas is. You want a dose of cold, hard reality? This is it.

At the same time, Víctor Gaviria's goal is not to be all preachy or anything. By using real street kids, thugs and regular people, Gaviria is allowing us to observe the actual situation for street kids in Colombia. Made in 1998, it's especially creepy knowing that nine actors in this movie died violent deaths since then. Not to mention that the main actress Lady Tabares is currently serving a prison sentence with her husband for having murdered a cab driver. Yikes!

Aug 9, 2014

Review: Hope Springs (2003)

Colin Firth in 2003 had pretty much won his spot in the romantic comedy genre. Think Fever Pitch from 1997 or the big obvious one here, Bridget Jones's Diary in 2001. With a budget of $25 million, it made $282 million which is a more than healthy chunk of change. Obviously Colin is capable of doing bigger and better things, but the premise of a Brit traveling to a town by the name of Hope in Vermont to get over a relationship could lend itself to perhaps something of interest. 

Hope Springs in the end was not very warmly received. English director Mark Herman who had previously had a steady string of directing jobs only went on to direct and write one more movie, The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas which was six years ago. Mark Herman based Hope Springs on Charles Webb's novel New Cardiff. Yes, The Graduate Charles Webb. Whether or not Herman followed the material properly, Hope Springs is a completely uninspired mess which in no way sets it apart from other romantic comedies at the time.

Aug 8, 2014

Review: La vie rêvée des anges [The Dreamlife of Angels] (1998)

Nationally, France doesn't produce a very large output of movies in a year, but that makes it possible for a lot of these movies to generally be of high quality. I don't really have much to complain about when it comes to French movies, I mean they usually clock in at 7's or higher on 10 for me personally which is pretty solid. No there aren't usually any big movies that can take on the blockbusters of Hollywood but French human dramas can be very good too.

One thing I find kind of funny about La vie rêvée des anges is that it is apparently one of the very few movies to have properly depicted someone being in a coma in a film. That's right, it's one of only two movies between 1970 and 2004 to have gotten comas right alongside Barbet Schroeder's Reversal of Fortune, which is kind of guilty of cheating because it's based on real events. Perhaps there's been a movie before 1970 or after 2004 to have gotten comas right but all the same, Erick Zonca and his writers deserve credit for their work.

Aug 7, 2014

Review: La dolce vita (1960)

I've seen over 3,000 movies and not one of them was directed by Federico Fellini? I should be pretty ashamed I suppose. And I call myself a film buff? Anyway, it's about time that I had a Fellini film to my watched library and La dolce vita is what I happened upon. Along with , La dolce vita is what I most often hear of being commented on when it comes to Federico Fellini so my expectations are up there.

The title translated means "the good life" and refers to the kind of lifestyle that main character Marcello Rubini leads. I didn't read anything about La dolce vita before watching it and I'll admit that I was not expecting the unstructured format that it "follows." We the viewers get an inside look at Marcello Rubini's life in seven different episodic sequences. Fellini doesn't give you everything on a nice platter though. You're responsible for closely following everything that's going on or you will fall behind.

Aug 6, 2014

Review: The Descent: Part 2 (2009)

When do horror sequels ever work? They do at times, but recapturing the magic of a good horror movie is a guaranteed punch to the gut for any self-respecting horror movie fan. Why do they do it? Well, the obvious answer is money and The Descent did make a fair amount theatrically due to its low budget. It didn't look low budget but £3.5 million is about $6 million US. Factor in the money it probably made on DVD sales and airings on TV, it's a good bet to have been quite profitable.

Neil Marshall is long gone and I'm sure had no interest in directing a sequel to his hit of 2005. It ended just perfectly, so why bother ruining it? In comes Jon Harris who has never directed again since The Descent: Part 2, which is never a good sign. Harris has mostly worked as an editor and has been involved in some pretty big projects in his career like Snatch., 127 Hours, and more. So he must be at least semi-capable right?

This review contains spoilers about The Descent.

Aug 5, 2014

Review: The Descent (2005)

A common complaint that I often have about horror movies is that they lose their steam about halfway through the movie. It's not even like the typical movie which loses its steam more like in the third half. No, it's at the half mark where everything falls apart. At least that's how it is in the bad horror movies. Lots of bad horror movies have at least semi-interesting premises and decent beginnings but it's just so disheartening when nothing holds up until the end.

Luckily, The Descent isn't like that at all. I can tell you straight up that the last half and last third hold up quite nicely. I haven't seen Neil Marshall's Dog Soldiers but it does seem pretty unique, interesting and was pretty well received at the time. It also serves as a good beginner experience for Marshall before getting into The Descent three years later. I suppose that the premise of a bunch of women going cave diving could seem a bit silly. I tell you, it's anything but.

Aug 4, 2014

Review: La otra conquista [The Other Conquest] (1998)

When La otra conquista was released, it was Salvador Carrasco's first feature directorial work. Having done three award-winning short films at NYU beforehand, it's been his main piece of work not counting his writing and producer credits later on. He seems like a guy who's more content working behind the lines as evidenced by his dedication to education as a film professor at different California colleges, which is totally fine as well as the fact that he's never directed a feature film since La otra conquista.

La otra conquista seems like a movie that has had real difficulty getting any actual traction for distribution. IMDb says that it's a 1998 film but Wikipedia says it was released in 1999 in Mexico followed by Los Angeles in 2000. It was later re-released in 2007 in several US cities. So while it did get quite a bit of critical attention, it's not like it was that loved or watched by the general populace, which explains the lack of traction for distribution. With only a pitiful 981 votes on IMDb as I write this, I can tell you that La otra conquista deserves much better than a 6.9 rating.

Aug 3, 2014

Review: Kurt & Courtney (1998)

I've never been a fan of Kurt Cobain or his band Nirvana but I do have a lot of respect for the impact that he had on music. Respect but also a bit of contempt. That's because my favourite kind of rock is the kind that virtuosos make. Artists like Joe Satriani, Steve Vai and Yngwie Malmsteen are my bread and butter. The peak of their popularity was during the 80's when everyone loved elaborate guitar solos that bordered on indulgent. OK, make that totally indulgent but I don't care. There's nothing I love more than a good guitar solo.

Grunge is probably partly responsible for people starting to reject the extravagant 80's rock scene. It's rougher and more simplistic in terms of composition and also far easier to learn for prospective guitar players. Anyhow, Cobain was huge and his death was obviously a big shock to everyone. According to Nick Broomfield, some people refused to believe that Kurt Cobain would take his own life in his prime. Conspiracy theories bubbled up and many people pointed their fingers at Kurt's wife of two years Courtney Love.

Aug 2, 2014

Review: Krippendorf's Tribe (1998)

Richard Dreyfuss is a well-respected actor and for good reason. At one point the youngest actor to have won an Academy Award, he's been in some classic movies and he's given great performances. I'll admit that I haven't personally seen too much of what he's been in besides the really big stuff like Jaws and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. I mean I'm only 23. But from what I've seen I can understand all the fuss around him.

Krippendorf's Tribe is based off of a novel by Frank Parkin. I've never read it and I don't know if the film gets it right. The premise of the film I'm sure actually would make for an entertaining book. Imagine, an anthropologist who has to fake a big discovery in order to not get accused of misusing the grant he was given years ago. There are lots of opportunities to inject some comedy and some thrills that would come about as this anthropologist navigates his web of lies.

Aug 1, 2014

Review: Waking Ned [Waking Ned Devine] (1998)

After watching Waking Ned, my first question was "what the hell happened to Kirk Jones?" He wrote and directed Waking Ned in 1998 before following that up with Nanny McPhee in 2005. Nanny to me is simply OK, nothing more. Four years after that, he wrote and directed Everybody's Fine which is a very empty remake of the Italian film Stanno tutti bene. His worst crime is 2012's What to Expect When You're Expecting which he thankfully did not write. Every movie he's done has gotten progressively worse so who knows what his next project would be like, if he ever does write or direct again. 

Set in Ireland, Waking Ned was actually filmed in the Isle of Man which is in the UK. That's probably something that would irk Irish citizens for sure, but as someone in Canada I don't really notice anything amiss. Sorry. I'll admit that I was having trouble understanding the characters' dialogue with their heavy Irish accents but at around the ten minute mark, I was fine.