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Wednesday, 05 August 1998 |  Written by Bill Warren  | 
title: Palmetto 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: Castle Rock MPAA rating: R starring: Woody Harrelson, Elisabeth Shue, Gina Gershon, Rolf Hoppe, Chloe Sevigny, Tom Wright, Michael Rapaport release year:   film rating: Two and One-Half Stars reviewed by: Bill Warren It's not necessary to notice that 'Palmetto' is based on a James Hadley Chase novel entitled "Just Another Sucker." All we need to do is watch flawed hero Harry Barber (Woody Harrelson) in action for a minute or two to guess which way the wind will blow. Despite this, the film succeeds in orffering a couple of genuinely startling plot twists, along with some good laughs. The problem here is that director Volker Schlondorff and screenwriter E. Max Frye don't entirely have a handle on how to maintain the bemused tone they occasionally succeed in setting. Sometimes the tone becomes so dark that it curdles the intended levity; in other sequences, would-be suspenseful action is played so broadly that it becomes comical.
Wednesday, 29 July 1998 |  Written by Bill Warren  | 
title: Dark City 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 Video MPAA rating: R starring: Rufus Sewell, William Hurt, Kiefer Sutherland, Jennifer Connelly, Ian Richardson, Richard O'Brien release year: 1998 film rating: Four stars reviewed by: Bill Warren There is only a tiny handful of SF movies written directly for the screen that have even some of the richness, bravado and logic of published science fiction, but the plot of "Dark City" could have sprung from the pages of The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. A story that was then adapted to a high-quality comic book, like Heavy Metal. Even if it doesn't at first look like well-conceived science fiction, it is; there are a few elements that seem to stem more from a desire for impressive design than from logic, but they're rare. "Dark City" is a fast-paced, exciting and intelligent SF movie, brilliantly designed, boldly conceived; it's "comic book" in that the design is so spectacular and so much a part ...
Wednesday, 22 July 1998 |  Written by Bill Warren  | 
title: Ganja & Hess 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: AllDay Entertainment MPAA rating: Unrated starring: Duane Jones, Marlene Clark, Bill Gunn, Sam Wayman, Leonard Jackson, Candece Tarpley, Richard Harrow, John Hoffmeister release year: 1972 film rating: Four stars reviewed by: Bill Warren Bill Gunn was an actor who wanted to make the transition to director, so when he was approached to do a "black vampire movie," he jumped at the chance. 'Ganja & Hess,' the resulting film, was a great deal more serious, intelligent and imaginative than the producers were expecting, but it was also clearly not a black horror movie along the lines of, say, 'Blacula.'
Wednesday, 22 July 1998 |  Written by Abbie Bernstein  | 
title: U.S. Marshals 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 Studios MPAA rating: PG-13 starring: Tommy Lee Jones, Wesley Snipes, Robert Downey, Jr., Joe Pantoliano, Kate Nelligan, Tom Wood, Irene Jacob release year: 1998 film rating: Three and One-Half Stars reviewed by: Abbie Bernstein If you want to hear metal and men screaming in agony and get the feeling of hurtling out of control from one life-threatening predicament to another, jump right up to Chapters 9-11 in 'U.S. Marshals.' The sound is screamingly loud and clear, the imagery is kinetically chaotic and the action is relentless enough to elicit whoops of approval at the filmmakers' willingness to wring every last hairy twist out of an attempted prison break on a plane in mid-flight. The sequence keeps recharging itself, becoming ever more exciting just as it seems it's got to wind down. That the other setpieces in 'U.S. Marshals' don't entirely pale by comparison is a tribute to the skill and inventiveness of director Stuart Baird ...
Tuesday, 14 July 1998 |  Written by Bill Warren  | 
title: Sphere 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: Warner Studios MPAA rating: PG-13 starring: Dustin Hoffman, Sharon Stone, Samuel L. Jackson, Peter Coyote, Live Schrieber release year: 1998 film rating: Three Stars reviewed by: Bill Warren The DVD release of 'Sphere' has a few welcome additions to the theatrical version. The "making of" short is a nifty bonus and the audio track with Dustin Hoffman and Samuel L. Jackson is agreeable, with a few interesting revelations (Hoffman says that at least one of the expository confrontations he and Sharon Stone have together was improvised). The cinematography is often dark as most of the film takes place in an underwater environment, but it is consistently sharp, with some impressive imagery. The soundtrack, both ambient and musical, has great echoing effects, particularly in Chapter 21. The film gives provides a good workout for the home system and is more than satisfying on the technical front.
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