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Editor's rating: 
Friday, 12 November 2004 ,  Written by Bill Warren
After the Sunset
Everyone in “After the Sunset” looks like they’re having a grand time. And why not? There they are in the Bahamas in very good company—Pierce Brosnan, Salma Hayek, Woody Harrelson, Don Cheadle, Naomie Harris—anybody would have a great time. Unfortunately, director Bret Ratner (“Rush Hour,” “Red Dragon”) is incapable of giving the audience the fun time his cast is having. The screenplay by Paul Zbyszewski and Craig Rosenberg is all over the place, never congealing into the sparkling, suave and dashing caper thriller-comedy it is clearly intended to be. In an early scene, Brosnan, then Harrelson, pick up a DVD of “To Catch a Thief.” We get it, fellas—you want this movie to be the same kind of charming, sexy, romantic adventure that Hitchcock-Cary Grant movie is. Unfortunately, though the on-screen talent would be up to that challenge, the folks behind ...
Editor's rating: 
Friday, 12 November 2004 ,  Written by Abbie Bernstein
A sequel to 2001’s “Bridget Jones’s Diary,” based on a novel by Helen Fielding (as, loosely, is the new film), “Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason” is a romantic comedy that continues the adventures of the titular heroine in her quest for love. Anybody who remembers the first film may wonder how exactly the filmmakers are going to pull this off, as by the finale of “Diary,” the love-obsessed Bridget (Renee Zellweger) was happily paired up with her uptight but fundamentally decent boyfriend, Mark Darcy (Colin Firth). However, in this “after the happily ever after” tale, it turns out that a steady relationship hasn’t done much to smooth out Bridget’s neuroses. She is still obsessed with her weight (she thinks she’s fat, though much of the audience will feel this is even remotely true only by movie standards – her legs ...
Editor's rating: 
Wednesday, 10 November 2004 ,  Written by Bill Warren
There’s no escaping “The Polar Express” It’s bearing down on all of us, thundering, hissing and honking, a juggernaut of determinedly glorious entertainment. Tom Hanks, who kind of stars, and Robert Zemeckis, who directed and co-wrote the script, are turning up on what seems to be every talk show other than the one hosted by Alf. They talk excitedly about the process the film employs, pointing out how the method allows the director almost infinite possibilities in blocking the action and choosing performances. We see shot after shot of Tom Hanks in a black skin-tight suit that looks like he just got back from SCUBA diving, his face covered in a network of tiny dots. No longer mere “motion capture,” the computer-driven method used in other movies, including “Lord of the Rings” (Gollum) and “Final Fantasy,” it has been rechristened ...
Editor's rating: 
Friday, 05 November 2004 ,  Written by Bill Warren
Pixar has done it again. The one studio that always seems to succeed succeeds once more with “The Incredibles,” even though it’s in a very different mode than their earlier films. Those include the “Toy Story” duo, “A Bug’s Life,” “Monsters, Inc.” and “Finding Nemo,” all triumphs, both in terms of quality and at the boxoffice. It’s possible “The Incredibles” won’t set any boxoffice records, precisely because it is so different from Pixar’s usual style—but it’s a hell of a movie anyway. The trailers strongly imply that it’s a spoof of superhero movies. Nope—it IS a superhero movie, and a very good one. Written and directed by Brad Bird (of “The Iron Giant”), this takes superherodom essentially seriously—Mr. Incredible (voiced by Craig T. Nelson) is a hero. He is super-strong and basically invulnerable, and has put these gifts to work helping ...
Editor's rating: 
Friday, 05 November 2004 ,  Written by Bill Warren
Behind the limpid, pastel scenes of “Birth” is the terror of the irrevocable loss death invariably brings. That terror is the basis of all legends of the afterlife, of reincarnation; life is so precious that the idea that when we die, we simply go out like candles verges on the intolerable. You must bring this awareness with you to “Birth,” because the movie itself doesn’t confront it head-on; it takes the concept for granted. Jonathan Glazer, director of “Sexy Beast,” deserves praise for treating the idea with seriousness, even solemnity. But the story of the film would work better had it been treated as a comedy. As it is, it’s so deeply somber as to verge on accidental self-parody. But what keeps bringing it back upright is the performance of Nicole Kidman. Her Anna is (eventually) so committed to the peculiar ...
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