Author Archive: beard.ben

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The Brothers Grimm

The Brothers Grimm

| September 10, 2005

Terry Gilliam loves children’s stories. He loves fantasy, oddities, and the insane. There’s always been a razor’s edge between reality and fantasy, rationality and insanity, in his films. In this case, these two dueling factions are embodied in the two brothers Grimm, Jacob and Will, in this thematic sequel of sorts to his oddball The […]

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Hustle & Flow

Hustle & Flow

| July 25, 2005

Terrence Howard is D-Jay, a fast-talking, low-rent pimp living in a poverty-stricken neighborhood outside of Memphis, Tennessee. Driving a piece of shit hoopty with silver rims, D-Jay barely survives with a stable of three girls, one pregnant, another a mother, their ersatz family on the cusp of disintegration as his hoes are on the verge […]

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Guard from the Underground

Guard from the Underground

| June 15, 2005

Kiyoshi Kurosawa, one of Japan’s more esteemed contemporary directors, delivers a simple conceit–club-wielding maniac butchers mid-level employees in empty skyscraper–producing a pleasing albeit slightly ridiculous thriller set in the confined world of the mega-corporation. But as the movie focuses more and more on the killer, the movie loses its appeal. Akiko Nureshima begins her first […]

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Pretty Cool

Pretty Cool

| June 5, 2005

In the rich tradition of Zapped Again!, Getting Lucky, other, lesser Revenge of the Nerds rip-offs, Pretty Cool follows a down on his luck schmuck trying to graduate high school, fend off the local bully, and get the girl. Like any teen comedy worth its salt, Pretty Cool enters that wacky high school world where […]

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The Longest Yard

The Longest Yard

| May 30, 2005

Adam Sandler and Chris Rock head up the cast of this mind-numbing remake of the same name. Picking up the original conceit, inverting the common moral viewpoint that prisoners deserve to be in prison and those that keep them there should be valued and respected, The Longest Yard delivers a frightful reversal: the prisoners are […]

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Dead Easy

Dead Easy

| May 25, 2005

A philandering high-powered advertising maverick, Simon (played by Richard Grieco, not the most famous ex-21 Jumpstreet star, but not the least famous either) has an affair with a co-worker who wants him to end it with his wife, Theresa. Living the high life in the hills of Capetown, South Africa, Simon is on the verge […]

Hell’s Bloody Devils

Hell’s Bloody Devils

| May 25, 2005

From the first shot stolen directly from The Wild One, leaping from a long take of a biker gang zipping down a dusty highway to an extended biker sporting that essential of drive-in iconography, a swastika, on his belt, Hell’s Bloody Devils tells the oddball funky tale of a government agent working undercover for the […]

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Into the West

Into the West

| May 25, 2005

The Western, like the musical, has seen better days. The heyday is over. The great western directors have all made their masterpieces. It sits on the shelf near the back of the genre closet, like the West itself, largely a myth only half-remembered. Occasionally a director will revisit with some success (Eastwood’s Unforgiven, or Jarmusch’s […]

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The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

| May 12, 2005

The wait is over. After two decades of scrambling, the science fiction satire dealing life, the universe, and everything finally hits the big screen. Living in a cottage in the countryside of England, blundering everyman Arthur Dent (Martin Freeman, from The Office) is having a bad day. His home is scheduled for demolition. His best […]

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Kung Fu Hustle

Kung Fu Hustle

| May 2, 2005

Hong Kong funnyman Stephen Chow creates an offbeat part western, part slapstick comedy, part kung fu madhouse hybrid to surprising good effect in this, his fourth film and follow up to the hilarious Shaolin Soccer. Set during the days of pre-revolutionary China, corruption is king. The axe handle gang, black clad axe-wielding thugs led by […]

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