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Editor's rating: 
Wednesday, 02 July 2003 ,  Written by Bill Warren
At one point in the awkwardly-titled "Legally Blonde 2: Red, White and Blonde," Luke Wilson watches part of Frank Capra's "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington" on TV, a little nod toward Capra's classic. Damned good thing this was included -- since "Legally Blonde 2: Red, White and Blonde" is to a certain degree a remake of the older film, though this isn't acknowledged in the credits. (Note: there was a credited remake, too: "Billy Jack Goes to Washington.") But the movie is such harmless fluff, and often reasonably funny, that there's really no harm done to Capra's reputation. (Unlike, say, Adam Sandler's "Mr. Deeds.") "Legally Blonde 2: Red, White and Blonde" isn't quite as good as the first film, since the surprise that Elle Woods (Reese Witherspoon), a relentlessly cheerful, focused-on-fashion little cutie from Bel Air actually is smart and shrewd ...
Editor's rating: 
Friday, 27 June 2003 ,  Written by Abbie Bernstein
“Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle” follows friskily in the wake of its 2000 predecessor, which was in turn based on the hit ‘70s TV series about three improbably gorgeous women crime-fighters who work for Charlie, a billionaire boss who’s so mysterious that his “angels” never meet him face to face. In the films, the Angels are bubbly Natalie (Cameron Diaz), tomboyish wild child Dylan (Drew Barrymore) and wealthy, brainy Alex (Lucy Liu). Like the previous bigscreen “Angels,” this one is directed by McG. He stages great stunts and some good sight gags, but somehow he doesn’t ride herd all that well on the various elements in the screenplay by John August and Cormac Wibberly & Marianne Wibberly. The story here includes Dylan’s old mobster boyfriend (Justin Theroux) who’s out for revenge, Alex’s current sometimes boyfriend (Matt LeBlanc), who wants to get ...
Editor's rating: 
Friday, 20 June 2003 ,  Written by Bill Warren
As has gradually become clear, there's more than one way to skin the comic book cat, more than one approach in adapting that colorful, sensationalistic material, the kind of thing that gets under your skin and, for many of us, stays there your whole life through. There's the approach of the first Christopher Reeve "Superman," to stay faithful to the superhero movie but to have fun with the villains, and to set it in a colorful but largely realistic world. In Tim Burton's "Batman," the world itself was bizarre and distorted, the kind of place that could generate not just a hero like Batman, but a villain as weird as The Joker. "X-Men" adapted the comics to fit a modern-day action movie style, and introduced interesting adult concerns. "Spider-Man" basically IS a big comic book, done absolutely straight and set ...
Editor's rating: 
Friday, 13 June 2003 ,  Written by Abbie Bernstein
“Hollywood Homicide” is a rather fluffy buddy cop movie made fairly entertaining by both the personnel involved and the fact that, for once, the high concept is actually a decent comedic notion. The movie feels like an ‘80s venture in the sense that director Ron Shelton and his co-writer Robert Souza exude an easy confidence that what they’re doing works and trust the audience to enjoy the ride. For the most part, we do. “Hollywood Homicide,” which could hardly feel more different than Shelton’s other recent look at the LAPD, “Dark Blue,” riffs on the premise that many L.A. cops have second jobs, often ones that don’t relate to law enforcement. If the gag never gets quite as outrageous or as intricate as it could be, it still provides a lot of solid comic fodder. Harrison Ford plays Joe Gavilan, a veteran ...
Editor's rating: 
Friday, 06 June 2003 ,  Written by Abbie Bernstein
2 Fast 2 Furious
There’s an almost overwhelming temptation to rag on “2 Fast 2 Furious.” It does provide, as promised, fast cars moving at high speeds, but it’s sort of like a delivery worker who tramples your bushes and knocks over the trashcans on the way to your door. Strictly speaking, the job has been done, but a totally unnecessary mess has been made along the way. “2 Fast 2 Furious” is a sequel of sorts to the 2001 much-bang-for-its-bucks “The Fast and the Furious,” in which young undercover cop Brian O’Connor (Paul Walker) infiltrated a crack truck hijacking ring, only to wind up befriending its charismatic leader (Vin Diesel) and ultimately letting the man go free. Stripped of his badge, Brian has migrated to Miami, where he’s a hero of the illegal street-racing scene. He is approached with an offer he can’t refuse ...
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