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Editor's rating: 
Saturday, 01 September 2007 |  Written by Bill Warren  | 
Big Lebowski, The Bless the Brothers Coen. Every couple of years, they turn up with an original, distinctive movie, blending much of the best of both independent filmmaking and big studio productions. Their stories are quirky and unusual, whether they're as serious as "Miller's Crossing" or as funny as "Raising Arizona" or as fanciful/peculiar as “O Brother Where Art Thou.” Because their movies are so entertaining, and please audiences and critics alike, they lure in major acting talent with no difficulties. "The Big Lebowski" is as amiable and ingratiating as The Dude (Jeff Bridges), the movie's central character, though it's a heck of a lot more organized. In fact, because of the kind of movie it is, it's tightly-plotted, beautifully structured. Joel & Ethan Coen's first movie was "Blood Simple," a terrific latter-day film noir with a strong sense of character and place, and a sure knowledge of how place shapes character. Firmly set in 1991 ...
Editor's rating: 
Wednesday, 01 August 2007 |  Written by Matt Granados  | 
Beerfest The National Lampoon movies sort of reached their downtrodden peak of funniness by the time the 1990s spurred around. Almost a decade into the 2000s and National Lampoon has become nothing more than a name tag on a never-ending list of direct-to-video abominations. In all fairness, at least its unique brand of twisted satire and bad taste had created some sweet moments of cinematic glory (need I say Vacation and Animal House?). Which goes above and beyond what comedy troupe Broken Lizard has managed to make since 2002 with the theatrical release of their first flick Super Troopers. Headed by actor-director Jay Chandrasekhar, Erik Stolhanske, Steve Lemme, Kevin Heffernan, and Paul Soter, the Broken Lizard guys seemed to have a better time making movies than the audiences did watching it. Club Dread and now Beerfest are no different. Jan Wolfhouse (Paul Soter) and Todd Wolfhouse (Erik Stolhanske) are brothers whose grandfather (Donald Sutherland) ...
Editor's rating: 
Tuesday, 01 May 2007 |  Written by Darren Gross  | 
Dazed and Confused “Dazed and Confused,” Richard Linklater’s follow-up to his loose, improvisatory Austin roundabout, “Slacker” follows more than a dozen characters for one night, immediately after school has closed for the summer. Set in 1976, it’s a natural bridge between the fragmentary, plotless “Slacker” and his later films with tighter narratives. As the last day of school ends, the film catalogues the adventures of high school students in different grades through the evening and early morning, while their personal stories and tiny character arcs collide. Randall “Pink” Floyd (Jeremy London) is the football team’s quarterback and will be entering his Senior year in the fall, but he’s starting to rebel and is conflicted about hypocritically signing a conduct pledge given to him by his coach. Junior high student, Mitch Kramer (Wiley Wiggins) is beset by a gang of about-to-be Seniors going around walloping all the incoming freshmen. The downtrodden Tony (Anthony Rapp) and Mike (Adam ...
Editor's rating: 
Sunday, 01 April 2007 |  Written by Darren Gross  | 
Happy Gilmore “Happy” Gilmore (Adam Sandler) is a hockey lover nursing a childhood dream of making it on a professional-league team. The problem is that while he can hit the puck, he’s a klutz on skates and has a violent temper. Happy’s guardian is his beloved grandmother (Frances Bay), who’s being thrown out of her house—she hasn’t paid her taxes. While supervising the state repossession agents who are emptying grandma’s house, Happy accidentally discovers that thanks to his hockey training, he has a particular talent for golf, especially the “long drive.” Encouraged by ex-golf pro Chubbs (Carl Weathers) and supportive Pro Tour publicist Virginia (Julie Bowen), Happy endeavors to win enough prize money on the golf circuit to save his grandmother’s home from the auction block. Organizers are initially appalled by Happy’s crude, uncouth game antics, but leave him be when his charismatic earthiness begins to gain him a large audience of rowdy supporters. As ...
Editor's rating: 
Thursday, 01 March 2007 |  Written by Mel Odom  | 
National Lampoon's Animal House “Saturday Night Live” superstar John Belushi stepped onto the silver screen with this National Lampoon produced opus of college days, a perennial favorite. The movie was actually an ensemble piece, but Belushi he stole the show so successfully that most people who have seen the movie remember him and the things he did better than they do the movie overall. First released in 1978 to an unsuspecting audience, “National Lampoon’s Animal House” quickly became the battle cry for a nation of rabble-rousers and introduced the idea of toga parties to the public at large. The movie set the style for most of the college films made since’ generally they all feature at least some of the same kinds of characters, problems, and situations. Without this film, we wouldn’t have “Van Wilder”; “Accepted”, or any of the “American Pie” movies. It opened up a whole new world to the moviegoing audience. “National Lampoon’s Animal House” ...
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