Archive for March, 2001

The Big Country

The Big Country

| March 27, 2001

On the evening or 3/17/2001, I had the pleasure of attending a screening of The Big Country (1958) as part of the American Cinematheque’s tribute to the acting career of Charlton Heston at the wonderful Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood. Before putting aside my personal feelings about Mr. Heston’s politics, I feel compelled to say that […]

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Oscar Wrap-Up 2001

Oscar Wrap-Up 2001

| March 26, 2001

About the nicest thing I can say about the Oscar telecast this year is that it ran less than three and a half hours. But since the proceedings themselves were so tepid, length didn’t matter. Perhaps it’s the industry’s fears of a double-strike whammy starting in just over a month. Perhaps it’s the effects of […]

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Enemy at the Gates

Enemy at the Gates

| March 22, 2001

It many ways, Enemy at the Gates is just another story of an extraordinary person who eventually falls victim to their own distorted and over-zealous publicity. But with guns and bombs. Lots of ’em. Enemy at the Gates is the fictionalized account of Vassili Zaitsev (Jude Law), a Russian sniper of humble origins whose uncanny […]

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Get Carter

Get Carter

| March 21, 2001

When the original version of this film was released in 1971, the world was a different place. An uptight, violent individual like Jack Carter was not the type of character who fit either the hero or anti-hero mold. In that earlier film he was portrayed as a dinosaur and was pretty much held at arm’s […]

Get Over It

Get Over It

| March 16, 2001

This sweet little film opened nation wide on 3/9/2001 to fairly decent business. The distributor, Miramax, refused to allow advance screenings which confirms their lack of confidence and support regardless of what they may say. After struggling through the crude Saving Silverman and the lame Head Over Heels recently, another obnoxious teen comedy was not […]

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Series 7

Series 7

| March 14, 2001

Though it may not always be fair to compare films, Series 7/The Contenders is everything that 15 Minutes wants to be: a sly, intelligent and thought-provoking comment on reality television (and perhaps even modern America). In writing about 15 Minutes, I offered a possible distinction between Films and Movies. After watching this film, I need […]

15 Minutes

15 Minutes

| March 14, 2001

My students have asked me why I use the term “film” sometimes and at other times, the term “movie.” A tough question. Because sometimes I do use the terms interchangeably. In my reviews, I almost always refer to movies as films (perhaps as a gesture of respect or perhaps because the generic term is “film […]

Blow Dry

Blow Dry

| March 10, 2001

Opened rather quietly by Miramax in several major keys including Los Angeles and New York on 3/7/2001, this one is inconsequential, formulaic, contrived and totally predictable. Unless you are obsessed with one or more members of the cast, and I can understand that, there isn’t any good reason to buy a ticket. Set in the […]

The Mexican

The Mexican

| March 7, 2001

When I first heard that Julia Roberts and Brad Pitt had signed to co-star, I was enthusiastic. I enjoyed seeing the published location photos; I liked the one sheet when I first saw it; I thought the trailer was promising. Then some negative buzz started to develop and advance reviews were mixed. Finally, on its […]

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Splendor

Splendor

| March 6, 2001

Quoth Gregg Araki, “After completing my Teen Apocalypse Trilogy… I was really looking to do something new and different that was far outside the realm of angst-ridden eighteen-year-olds.” With Splendor, he achieves his goal, getting about as far from angst as possible. Inspired by the old screwball comedies of the 30’s and 40’s, Araki brings […]