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Editor's rating: 
Thursday, 10 December 2009 ,  Written by Daniel Hirshleifer
The Princess and the Frog (2009)
There was a time when the name "Disney" meant unassailable quality in animation. The studio of course kick started feature-length animation with the classic Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, and had a renaissance in the format beginning in 1989 with the brilliant The Little Mermaid. However, when Pixar arrived on the scene in 1995, the industry began to shy away from traditional hand-drawn cell animation in favor of the more glitzy and glamorous 3D CGI. Not only that, but Disney began pumping out 2D hand-drawn films faster than before, resulting in less interesting entries like Tarzan and outright failures such as Home on the Range (although a few delights such as The Emperor's New Groove and Lilo and Stitch are sprinkled in). Disney eventually closed down their animation department in favor of CGI. Surprisingly, it was Pixar, who originally ...
Editor's rating: 
Monday, 28 September 2009 ,  Written by Daniel Hirshleifer
Paranormal Activity (2009)
"Sleep, those little slices of death. Oh, how I loathe them." -Edgar Allen Poe What happens when we close our eyes at night? What sort of things lurk in the dark, waiting for us to drop our guard, waiting to feast on our flesh and prey on our souls? Have you ever tried to fall asleep, only to toss and turn, certain that someone, or something, was watching you? What if that something decided that watching wasn't enough? What if it decided the time had act? You see, Katie (Katie Featherston) has been experiencing this her whole life. Ever since she was eight, she would wake in the middle of the night to find a shadowy figure looming at the foot of her bed. The figure would come and go, haunting her at intervals, regardless of where she moved to try ...
Editor's rating: 
Thursday, 27 August 2009 ,  Written by Daniel Hirshleifer
Halloween II (2009)
I've spent a lot of time defending Rob Zombie. His first picture, House of 1,000 Corpses, while not entirely original, showed a man who was passionate and stuck to his guns, crafting a horror flick that didn't shy away from gore, nudity, and the things that make the more extreme genre exercises fun. Its follow-up, The Devil's Rejects, refined the ideas of the first, and was buoyed by sharper storytelling and bleak, pitch-black humor. However, Zombie's movies are very divisive, with just as many people (if not more) hating his work as those that love it. When Zombie was tapped to remake John Carpenter's 1978 genre-defining classic Halloween, the horror community rose a deafening clamor. Everyone was worried he'd turn the masterpiece of suspense and mood into a cheap thrill ride, with nothing to distinguish it from the forgettable everyday ...
Editor's rating: 
Friday, 21 August 2009 ,  Written by Daniel Hirshleifer
Inglourious Basterds (2009)
How does he do it? How does Quentin Tarantino continually and consistently create film after exhilarating film, each with its own unique style, but a voice that is undeniably Tarantino's? And how is it that he can make a single scene with two characters talking be so absolutely riveting? What is the secret? If I knew, I wouldn't be writing this review. I'd be busy getting my own film career off the ground. But I don't, so here we are. And while I may not know what makes Tarantino tick, he sure does, and he brings all of his considerable talents to bear with the thrilling and unforgettable Inglourious Basterds.Despite sharing a title (but not the spelling) with an obscure 1978 Italian war film, Inglourious Basterds is not a remake. It follows Lt. Aldo Raine (Brad Pitt) as he and ...
Editor's rating: 
Friday, 14 August 2009 ,  Written by Daniel Hirshleifer
The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard (2009)
While Jeremy Piven was a decent character actor running around Hollywood starting in the 90's, he's gained almost all of his notoriety by playing skillful super talent agent Ari Gold on the hit HBO series Entourage. As Ari, Piven is a man driven to get everything he can for his clients, wrestling deals with studios and telling the stars what they need to hear. This sort of high-powered sales pitch seems like it's ready-made for Piven's first big leading role--Don Ready in The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard. However, despite Piven giving it the old college try, and even with a decent team of comedic actors running behind him, the movie still falls flat.Piven is Don Ready, and he's got the goods. Don is the kind of man who will sell you the car you came to trade in. Always ...
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