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Tuesday, 17 June 2003 |  Written by Abbie Bernstein  | 
title: The Big Kahuna function popUp(URL,NAME) { amznwin=window.open(URL,NAME,'location=yes,scrollbars=yes,status=yes,toolbar=yes,resizable=yes,width=380,height=450,screenX=10,screenY=10,top=10,left=10'); amznwin.focus();} document.open(); document.write(""); document.close(); studio: Universal Home Video starring: Kevin Spacey, Danny DeVito, Peter Facinelli release year: 2000 film rating: Three-and-a-Half Stars sound/picture: Three Stars reviewed by: Abbie Bernstein Contrary to what its title and the box art imply, ‘The Big Kahuna’ is not about surfing, Hawaiians or wild partying. It is instead a study of three characters that is often keenly funny, occasionally quite moving and consistently perceptive and articulate, as well as exquisitely acted by Kevin Spacey, Danny DeVito and Peter Facinelli. Larry (Spacey) and Phil (DeVito) are a pair of veteran salesmen representing their company at a convention in the Midwest. They are joined by a new guy from the research department, Bob (Facinelli), who is a generation younger, a lot less experienced and (to Larry’s exasperation) a devout Baptist. The trio host a party with the aim of snagging an important client, referred to jocularly as "the Big Kahuna," among other things. Larry’s tension escalates to the brink ...
Tuesday, 03 June 2003 |  Written by Bill Warren  | 
title: Invincible function popUp(URL,NAME) { amznwin=window.open(URL,NAME,'location=yes,scrollbars=yes,status=yes,toolbar=yes,resizable=yes,width=380,height=450,screenX=10,screenY=10,top=10,left=10'); amznwin.focus();} document.open(); document.write(""); document.close(); studio: New Line Home Entertainment MPAA rating: PG-13 starring: Tim Roth, Jouko Ahola, Anna Gourari, Max Raabe, Jacob Wein, Udo Kier, Gustav-Peter Woehler release year: 2001 film rating: Three and a half stars sound/picture rating: Three stars reviewed by: Bill Warren World War II, and what led up to it, proves to be an inexhaustible source of stories for interesting movies. Written and directed by the creative Werner Herzog, "Invincible" finds yet another story; even though some elements of it have turned up in other movies, the core tale here seems to be presented for the first time. In 1932 Poland, young Zishe Breihart (Jouko Ahola), a Jew, works in his father's blacksmith shop. He's become very large and extraordinarily well muscled; he's also quiet and usually gentle, a hero to the local Jewish kids, particularly his wise and learned younger brother, Benjamin (Jacob Wein). A circus comes to town with its own strong man, whom Zishe easily defeats in ...
Tuesday, 22 April 2003 |  Written by Bill Warren  | 
title: Bloody Sunday function popUp(URL,NAME) { amznwin=window.open(URL,NAME,'location=yes,scrollbars=yes,status=yes,toolbar=yes,resizable=yes,width=380,height=450,screenX=10,screenY=10,top=10,left=10'); amznwin.focus();} document.open(); document.write(""); document.close(); studio: Paramount Home Entertainment MPAA rating: R starring: James Nesbitt, Allan Gildea, Gerard Crossan, Mary Moulds, Carmel McCallion, Tim Pigott-Smith, Nicholas Farrell, Christopher Villiers, James Hewitt, Declan Duddy release year: 2002 film rating: Four and half stars sound/picture: Four stars reviewed by: Bill Warren On January 30, 1972, Protestant member of the Ulster parliament, organized a largely Catholic civil rights march in Derry, Northern Ireland. The British Army had authority to shut down the march, but through a series of confusing misunderstandings, began firing on the marchers. Fourteen were killed outright, 20-some were wounded, and one died later. The path to peace in Ireland had been rocky and uncertain, but progress was slow -- and reversed because of this incident. It's hard to imagine an act that could have been more bloodthirsty and destructive. Enlistments in the IRA jumped, and bombs began going off in England and elsewhere. To this day, just what happened has been unclear. The Army swore that they were fired ...
Tuesday, 18 March 2003 |  Written by Abbie Bernstein  | 
title: 8 Mile function popUp(URL,NAME) { amznwin=window.open(URL,NAME,'location=yes,scrollbars=yes,status=yes,toolbar=yes,resizable=yes,width=380,height=450,screenX=10,screenY=10,top=10,left=10'); amznwin.focus();} document.open(); document.write(""); document.close(); studio: Universal Studios Home Video MPAA rating: R starring: Eminem, Mekhi Phifer, Brittany Murphy, Kim Basinger release year: 2002 film rating: Three-and-a-Half Stars sound/picture: Three-and-a-Half Stars reviewed by: Abbie Bernstein Although it is set very specifically in 1995, “8 Mile” evokes memories of 1977’s “Saturday Night Fever,” which likewise featured a young man from a working-class background trying to make something of himself via his chosen art form. There have actually been plenty of movies with this premise before and since – it’s just that “Saturday Night Fever” is one of the few that succeeded without making its themes and/or its lead look silly. While Brooklyn discos in the ‘70s and Detroit rap clubs in the ‘90s would seem to be separated by far more than mere geography, “8 Mile” turns out to be a worthy successor in the genre. It of course helps immeasurably that leading man Eminem has total credibility in most quarters when it comes to rap and ...
Monday, 10 March 2003 |  Written by Abbie Bernstein  | 
title: White Oleander function popUp(URL,NAME) { amznwin=window.open(URL,NAME,'location=yes,scrollbars=yes,status=yes,toolbar=yes,resizable=yes,width=380,height=450,screenX=10,screenY=10,top=10,left=10'); amznwin.focus();} document.open(); document.write(""); document.close(); <br> studio: Warner Bros. Home Video MPAA rating: PG-13 starring: Alison Lohman, Robin Wright Penn, Michelle Pfeiffer, Renee Zellweger release year: 2002 film rating: Four Stars sound/picture: Three-and-a-Half Stars reviewed by: Abbie Bernstein “White Oleander” doesn’t easily fit any genre category. Broadly speaking, it’s a drama with many coming-of-age and mother/daughter issues, but its perpetual sense of underlying menace – the use of poisonous flowers in the title is extremely apt – gives it an uncommon edge. On the other hand, the film is far too elliptical, character-driven and free-wheeling to be classified as a thriller. Danger lurks in some unexpected places for Astrid (Alison Lohman), but while the effect is cumulative, there isn’t a villain with a scheme, or indeed any malicious figures with long-range plans. Fatal havoc is wrought here by people who are desperate rather than evil.
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