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No Votes Here for Robin Williams in "Man of the Year"

What if someone like Jon Stewart beat the odds and was elected president? "Man of the Year" provides that premise, but in order to work, the script would actually have to be funny, and trust me, this story is really short on laughs – even with Robin Williams in the starring role.

  • Christa Banister |
  • February 20, 2007 |
  • comments
Nothing Worth Learning in “School for Scoundrels”

“School for Scoundrels” is based on a novel by Stephen Potter and a 1960 screenplay by Hal Chester and Patricia Moyers. Unfortunately, however, the adaptation doesn’t work. What should have been either dark or funny simply comes across as horrendously cruel.

  • Annabelle Robertson |
  • February 16, 2007 |
  • comments
Scorcese Displays His Heart of Darkness in "The Departed"

With “The Departed,” director Martin Scorcese's passion returns in spades. But the film is, like so many other Scorcese-directed works, overly long, terribly profane, brutally violent and extremely dark.

  • Christian Hamaker |
  • February 13, 2007 |
  • comments
"Grudge 2" a Rehash of the First

The real problem with "The Grudge 2" is the script, which is a redundant rehash of the first. It wasn’t great to begin with and now it’s worse. And again, that’s assuming you like watching people being murdered and terrified to begin with. And that, my friends, is the crux.

  • Annabelle Robertson |
  • February 12, 2007 |
  • comments
Stars, Stripes and Cynicism on Display in “Flags”

A meditation on Pilate’s question, “What is truth?”, "Flags of Our Fathers" attempts to demythologize the moments we hold dear as a country - in this case, the image of five Marines and a Navy corpsman during World War II (1945) raising the American flag on the island of Iwo Jima.

  • Christian Hamaker |
  • February 06, 2007 |
  • comments
Hollywoodland Tells a Fallen Superhero's Hopeless Tale

Superman Returns revived the superhero's franchise, but Hollywoodland gives us a much more serious side to the Superman story. Unfortunately, this tale of the rise and fall of actor George Reeves delivers the same mixed results as Bryan Singer's over-hyped vision of the superhero.

  • Christian Hamaker |
  • February 06, 2007 |
  • comments
Facing the Giants Scores a Touchdown for Faith-Based Films

While Facing the Giants isn't exactly breaking new ground in the sports drama sense, the faith element leaves you feeling inspired. And for a movie with a low budget and no recognizable Hollywood actors to speak of, that's a miracle in and of itself.

  • Christa Banister |
  • January 30, 2007 |
  • comments
"Open Season" Gets Back to Nature With Amazing Animation

What fun my eleven-year-old son and I had at a recent screening for “Open Season.” We got to see the 3-D IMAX version of the movie with animation and effects that are simply breathtaking and amazing.

"Flyboys" Barely Gets off the Ground

In its desire to reach a broad audience, "Flyboys" intersperses action with romance, settling for clichés in both instances. The bland performances from a mostly undistinguished cast don’t help matters either.

  • Christian Hamaker |
  • January 30, 2007 |
  • comments
Jesus Camp an Interesting Look Into Growing Subculture

Jesus Camp will likely drive home not only the polarization between believers and non-believers, but also how truly splintered we are as Christians today.

  • Annabelle Robertson |
  • January 23, 2007 |
  • comments
Football More Than a Game in Gridiron Gang

For some, football is just a game. For others – like teenage inmates who have no reason to live, and nothing left but hope – football really is life. So get ready to flick away a few tears, gentlemen. This one will hit you like a defensive linebacker – right in the gut.

  • Annabelle Robertson |
  • January 23, 2007 |
  • comments
Latest Esther Movie Inspires in "One Night With the King"

Since 1913, Hollywood has produced at least nine movies about the biblical Esther. But perhaps the most intriguing is the latest, "One Night With the King", which does a laudable job telling the timeless, inspiring story of a young girl’s bravery amidst treachery, scandal, and genocide.

Kevin Costner Helps "The Guardian" Stay Above Water

Underneath all his steely gazes and rapid-fire commands, Coast Guard rescue swimmer Ben Randall is ultimately likeable and even noble in his intentions. Kevin Costner does a great job of displaying those nuances in "The Guardian."

  • Christa Banister |
  • January 23, 2007 |
  • comments
Slow-Moving Night Listener a Mediocre Effort

I wasn't engaged by the story or its “mystery,” which seemed fairly humdrum, “Law and Order” style. Once you’re over the disturbing sexual content and, of course, the phallic humor so ubiquitous in homosexual-themed films, it’s still a very mediocre effort.

  • Annabelle Robertson |
  • January 15, 2007 |
  • comments
Tricky Illusionist Plays With Our Expectations

Not all it could be, but it has one big trick up its sleeve — and it’s a doozy. Is it magic, manipulation, or a little of both? If it’s judged to be the former, the film will prove rewarding; if the latter, the film will feel like a cheat.

Wicker Man Thriller Not So Thrilling

This film’s poster shows a little girl with demonic eyes superimposed on a decomposing headshot of Nicolas Cage, made to look as if his face is being eaten by honey. This, like the trailer, tells us we’re going to watch a horror movie. Instead, it’s more of a thriller. But oh, how I wish I could say that I was thrilled.

  • Annabelle Robertson |
  • December 22, 2006 |
  • comments
Invincible Triumphs Over Usual Sports Movie Clichés

Before one assumes that Invincible follows all the sports movie cliches, it doesn't. Instead, the movie is the true story of the rather unlikely NFL career of Vince Papale.

  • Christa Banister |
  • December 21, 2006 |
  • comments
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