Arts + Life

Movie Reviews
12:05 pm
Fri December 7, 2001

Novocaine

Steve Martin in \"Novocaine\"

Helena Bonham Carter on the loose to bilk dentists of their drugs is the best fear generator of the film.

Maybe a touch of laughing gas would have helped me understand if "Novocaine" is supposed to be a black comedy, film noir, or just a mouthful of decay. The last item is where I lean -? I longed for the "Marathon Man"?s clean horror, not this wimpy plot with turns barely qualifying for twists.

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Movie Reviews
2:50 pm
Thu December 6, 2001

Monsters, Inc.

Goodman and Crystal
2001 - Disney/Pixar

Cleaning the environment of child contamination is a hilarious conceit that turns around the usual fears children have of monsters in closets.

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Movie Reviews
1:07 pm
Thu December 6, 2001

Apocalypse Now Redux

Marlon Brando in \"Apocalypse Now\"

No one in a literate, civilized society should miss this film --- it is a stunning fusion of sight, sound, and sense.

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Movie Reviews
12:15 pm
Thu December 6, 2001

An American Rhapsody

Nastassja Kinski in \"An American Rhapsody\"

I know about teenage daughters, believe me --- rebel they will, and Scarlett Johansson's daughter Suzanne shows teen anguish and rebellion as authentic as could be.

Veteran editor Eva Gardos ("Mask") has her first directorial production with "An American Rhapsody." It's a story of a young girl's odyssey from Hungary to the U.S. in the 1940's, bouncing from her natal to adopted families with the help of her grandmother.

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Movie Reviews
11:49 am
Thu December 6, 2001

Vertical Ray of the Sun

Tran Nu Yen-Khe as \"Lien\"

If you understood that "Seinfeld" was about nothing, then you will accept that "Vertical Ray of the Sun" is about almost nothing.

If you understood that "Seinfeld" was about nothing, then you will accept that "Vertical Ray of the Sun" is about almost nothing. For instance, Hanoi is awash in color and brother and sister listen to Lou Reed while they exercise their bodies and exorcise their incestuous longings. Nothing else happens.

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Movie Reviews
11:07 am
Thu December 6, 2001

Ghost World

Scarlett Johannson and Thora Birch

"After five minutes of this movie, you're going to wish you had 10 beers." These bursts of wisdom are indicative of an odd girl who will have to find out how to maneuver in a much less honest world.

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Movie Reviews
3:17 pm
Tue December 4, 2001

The Man Who Wasn't There

Billy Bob Thornton teams up with the Coen brothers

The Coen brothers are back with their usual barnyard of eccentric characters.

I haven't quite figured out why I love film noir, but the Coen Brothers make me remember some of the reasons. Cinematographer Roger Deakin drenches the shots in vivid black and white, reminding me of noir's diet of good and evil, like a virginal young musician who suprisingly goes down on Billy Bob Thornton's Ed to reward him for trying to help her, thus precipitating an almost deadly accident because of the reward.

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Movie Reviews
3:15 pm
Tue December 4, 2001

Amelie

Audrey Tautou as \"Amelie\"

She's a little troublemaker with a big heart, and if you don't watch her, she'll steal the gnome from your garden and then your heart.

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Movie Reviews
11:44 am
Tue December 4, 2001

Sidewalks of New York

Heather Graham and Stanley Tucci in \"Sidewalks of New York\"
2001 Paramount Classics

All we get here are actors whose lives and conversation are punctuated by no more wisdom than comments about perfuming private parts and penis size.

Ed Burns's Tommy Riley is caught renting "Breakfast at Tiffany's," leading to an affair and a pregnancy. This is the most excitement you're going to get in this Woody Allen rip-off.

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Movie Reviews
10:19 am
Tue December 4, 2001

My First Mister

Albert Brooks and LeeLee Sobieski

May to December can be the cruelest months if they're about a relationship between a young woman and an older man.

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