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Bonneville Road Trip Barely Makes It

As the debut of writer/director Christopher Rowley, Bonneville—but only barely. It’s full of the usual road trip clichés (the road-tripping gals pick up a handsome hitchhiker and one falls in love with a trucker), but it lacks substance.

  • Annabelle Robertson |
  • June 26, 2008 |
  • comments
Definitely, Maybe Defies Predictable Rom-Com Experience

Unlike the mindless frivolity of Fool’s Gold or the by-the-numbers cuteness of 27 Dresses, Definitely, Maybe is a well-conceived love story that doesn’t insult your intelligence. Seriously.

Darkness Pervades a Thought-Provoking Spiderwick Chronicles

The typical magical, fantasy-type outlook pervades The Spiderwick Chronicles' dark worldview. Creatures, spells and potions, and flying and time travel abound. But there are also some interesting spiritual parallels that are worthy of discussion.

Charlie Bartlett an Excellent Case Study on Today’s Teens

Charlie Bartlett is a well-made, funny but sad, targeted look at the very real emotions that plague our children. It is an enlightening case study on the cynicism, meaninglessness, relativism, disillusionment with authority, and desperate search for authenticity that teens deal with daily.

Stale Story Hurts Spectacle of 10,000 B.C.

10,000 B.C. works as sheer spectacle, but its story is forgettable. Its unknown actors make an impression because of their striking looks, but it’s hard to fathom what their future roles might be based on this special-effects driven extravaganza.

No Cinematic Treasure Found in Fool's Gold

In Fool’s Gold, one might expect more of the comedy and chemistry Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson first had in How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days. But a hokey script has quickly washed away any hope of striking rom-com gold twice.

Wacky Be Kind Rewind Has Lots of Laughs

Be Kind Rewind starts as a tale about the passing of the torch and serves as a wistful look at the fading days of video-rental shops. It evolves into a sci-fi slapstick comedy before settling into a series of cinematic recreations that play like gag reels. Yet somehow, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

Home Is Where the Hum-Drum Is in Roscoe Jenkins

How so many talented actors ended up in Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins is a mystery. Many of the big names have only a few lines and are wasted in a film that just leaves viewers cold.

Kick The Bucket List to the Curb

“Find the joy in your life.” That’s the bottom-line message of director Rob Reiner’s The Bucket List, delivered by one of two characters who are facing death and trying to find meaning in their existence. But the film reflects another saying as well: “Everything old is new again.”

Inert Jumper Could Use a Jump-Start

Jumper could have been the start of an entertaining franchise had it registered a pulse. Unable to clear even lowest of plot thresholds, however, it deserves to make a quick trip through theaters and materialize on video shelves imminently.

The Other Boleyn Girl Soaps Up History

Starring Natalie Portman and Scarlett Johansson, The Other Boleyn Girl is nothing more than a soap opera that accentuates immorality, embellishes facts and celebrates its deviations from the historical record.

Flawless Delivers Usual Heist Message

Directed by Michael Radford and based on a script by newcomer Edward Anderson, Flawless sends the usual heist message. That is, as long as you’ve got good intentions—and are desperate enough—crime does indeed pay.

  • Annabelle Robertson |
  • June 05, 2008 |
  • comments
Well-Intentioned Darfur Now Falls Short

At a time when one can’t pronounce the word “Darfur,” documentaries about the ongoing genocide in this African region are a welcome relief. But as needed and as well intentioned as this is, unfortunately Darfur Now falls far short of its potential.

  • Annabelle Robertson |
  • June 05, 2008 |
  • comments
Semi-Pro Only Semi-Funny

Maybe you’ve heard the adage: "If you’ve seen one Will Ferrell movie, you've seen 'em all." Well maybe no one’s said that yet, but they will. Especially if he keeps making vapid, vulgar comedies that are hardly even amusing.

Look Away from The Eye

The Eye, a remake of a film directed by Danny and Oxide Pang, makes the brothers 0 for 2 in American films they directed or that were remade from their original work. It’s deadly dull—worse than 2007’s tepid The Messengers—and should vanish quickly.

Grace Is Gone Focuses More on the Family

Grace Is Gone is one of the first films about the Iraq war to explore the death of a female soldier. Another unique element is its focus on the family—a worthy subject that hundreds of thousands of families of deployed members are sure to appreciate.

Good Acting Can’t Save The Air I Breathe

Unfortunately, the acting isn’t enough to save this film, which views like an off-kilter copycat of Crash with lesser production values. Not really worth the effort, even if you can stomach the violence.

Rambo a Bad Flashback to '80s Excess

The new film Rambo, directed by and starring Sylvester Stallone, presents an interesting case study on the idea of suffering and reacquaints us with John Rambo, a troubled Vietnam vet who has a hard time overcoming his killer instincts.

Woody’s Worth Increases with Cassandra’s Dream

London has been good to Woody Allen. Cassandra’s Dream, the third film in Allen’s London-based trilogy, rivals his earlier moral drama, Match Point, while exceeding that film’s technical craft and giving Colin Farrell the role of his career.

Exciting Book of Secrets Great for Family Moviegoing

National Treasure: Book of Secrets is an exciting, well-made film that families will want to support. According to friends in the industry, it is terribly difficult to make a family-friendly movie that’s not schmaltzy, that’s full of action, adventure, history, and romance.

Example: "Gen 1:1" "John 3" "Moses" "trust"
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