Patrick McGinlay's Internet Tendency

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February 9, 2004

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Jacob Zhivov:

I thought Eight is Enough or at least that TV show told me that but apparently 12 is the magic number for comedy.

In today's western society where most families have about 1.87 children the Baker family has 12. But when Tom (Steve Martin) gets his dream job -- coaching his alma mater's football team -- he moves the family from small-town Illinois to the big city. Meanwhile, his wife (Bonnie Hunt) also gets her dream of getting her book published, leaving Tom to help the kids adjust to a new town while he adjusts to coaching a new football team. But while she's away promoting the book, Tom has a hard time keeping the house in order while at the same time coaching his football team as the once happy family starts falling apart.

Although I've never seen the 1950s original of this film I still think there's a nice wholesome family movie here. It's got some really funny bits and some really cute bits and overall it can be a bit sappy but I found this film quite good to sit through. It's got mindless comedy and slapstick elements which were really good.

Steve Martin is really funny in this film although in reality I doubt Tom Baker would be as helpless in raising the kids as he is in the film. Bonnie Hunt has some good one liners as the ever caring mother of the group. Look out for Piper Perabo as the eldest sibling of this group of kids who seems to be acting as the audience would be to this situation. Also for the teen market you get to see Hilary Duff, TV Superman Tom Welling and Ashton Kutcher.

Cheaper by the Dozen is a good and funny film but it does get sappy at the end, you may want to see when it gets to the video store but you may also enjoy it at the cinema.


Jacob Zhivov:

Ben Stiller is a very fine actor but he seems to typecast himself in most of his movies as the slightly neurotic nice guy and leaves a lot of the really good laughs to the other characters in his films. In Along Came Polly he's no different.

Reuben Feffer (Ben Stiller) is a man who's afraid of risk because he makes a living analysing it. But after his wife (Debra Messing) cheats on him while on their honeymoon he seems lost in his life. However, after a chance meeting with Polly Prince (Jennifer Aniston) at a party Reuben tries to take a chance and ask Polly Prince out. Throw in adrenaline junkie Australian business man Leland Van Lew (Bryan Brown) who's trying to get life insurance so he can stay CEO of his company and Reuben's friend and child star Sandy Lyle (Phillip Seymour Hoffman) and you've got an interesting time ahead for Reuben.

This film is really funny from the start when we see Sandy walk into the reception centre and fall flat on his arse and really the comedy of this film is all Phillip Seymour Hoffman, his portrayal of a child star that went nowhere is so funny that you can't stop laughing when he's in a scene. Bryan Brown is also brilliant as Leland who's a businessman but also likes to jump off buildings and sail into storms, some really funny stuff with him. As I said before Stiller is the same character as he is in most of his films and since this was by one of the co-writers of Meet the Parents I wish he would find other roles like Zoolander to do. He's funny but we've seen him do all this in other films.

I suggest that Ben Stiller re-pitch Heat Vision and Jack the best TV pilot never made. Along Came Polly is really funny but not as good as other stuff he's done.



Jacob Zhivov:

Set in the secret nocturnal and supernatural world of vampires and werewolves, two groups that have been at war for centuries, this is the story of a romance between a female vampire warrior, Selene (Kate Beckinsale), who's famous for her strength and werewolf-hunting prowess, and Michael (Scott Speedman), who gets bitten by a werewolf.

This film did promise a lot from the trailers and I like this type of film so I went into this film with some hope despite all the bad reviews I had heard about it. Alas I was disappointed by this film as it spent way too much time on gun battles rather than trying to flesh out the plot. A lot of the exposition and explanation is only done to the end and as I sat there I felt at times that I had no clue as to what was going on. I would also have liked to have seen some sort of actual fighting between the werewolves and vampires instead of the constant shooting at each other with their hi-tech weaponry.

Underworld is very average when it come to an action film and even lower for a supernatural action film.


Michael Pemberton:

What can I say? You know you're in for a great filmgoing experience when you're surrounded by the kind of people who only go to the cinema when they aren't paying for it. No, I'm not talking about the reviewers, I'm talking about the people who have too much spare time and spend it listening to the radio and trying to be lucky caller number 12.

It opens with the handing out of prizes to get rid of the stock that the promotional staff didn't want and ends with you wondering why these people are allowed out of their cells in the first place.

It is all summed up by the guy that couldn't even remember what station he had rung to get his free tickets. Not all that hard seeing as they had signs up all around the walls.



Jacob Zhivov:

When the police chief (Denzel Washington) of a small Florida town "borrows" money from the evidence room so he can run away with a woman he's always been in love with, she quickly betrays him, revealing that she only began having an affair with him as a way to seek revenge... Now, with his reputation and career on the line, an otherwise good cop must resolve his life before the FBI closes in and he runs out of time.

This film took its time to set up what exactly was happening but once the suspense and story started moving it was all good. Denzel is quite good as the very confused Chief of police of a four cop town and Eva Mendes is very good as the detective in charge of the homicide case.

You have to be patient with the plot but after it's all done I believe Out of Time is a really enjoyable cop drama.



Adam Wajnberg:

Like League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Richard Donner's Timeline suffers from being a rushed attempt to recreate a well-written book, in this case Michael Crichton's book of the same name. However unlike League, Timeline has little excuse for such poor execution, having source material so obviously written with the screen in mind. In the end, Timeline's shortcomings are all its own, and have nothing to do with poor rendering of secondhand material. These shortcomings can be summed up in two sentiments. A: Hollywood films will always bypass depth for action, not realizing that it's no longer impressive to have special effects alone, and B: Paul Walker acts the way conservative Christians fuck -- stiff and embarrassing.

A company has found a way to transport people through space, and accidentally, over time. So they send back all of these nuggets to 1357, and then send back a prominent archaeologist in a Billy Connolly suit to rescue them, and then send back a team of softcocks to rescue him. The main softcock is his son, a softcock named Chris who very obviously has a soft, flaccid penis. Thankfully, the softcocks all have highly contrived skill sets that come in handy at just the right moments. The only real difference between this and Jurassic Park is that here the dinosaurs have horrible British accents. Thankfully though, the film is historically accurate. Indeed, the British forces in the 100 years war spoke very little French, however the French could speak quite excellent English in very French accents, a huge convenience for this films overwhelmingly English speaking audience.

The action in this film wasn't exciting enough to cover up the flaws presented by the script, and so we're left with another $40 million plus picture that will die in the ass. Hopefully though, it will make producers think twice before hiring Paul Walker for anything that involves words or movement.



Jacob Zhivov:

The plot is so very Crichton. New technology goes awry and it's up to our some idealistic academics to save the day, throw in a power mad rich guy, a geek who refuses to go and some ex-marine and it could be Jurassic Park again.

Time travel movies can be really good. Back to the Future comes to mind as this film goes to lengths to make you understand the time travel paradox and the need for our hero to get home before he ruins the world. In Timeline, however, I just didn't care about the characters nor did they care much about what they did in the past and how it effect the future.

The one really good thing about this film was seeing the battle at Castleguard but there were many bad things in this film, Paul Walker being the top of my list. He's great as maybe a dumbass football player but he is no way believable as someone who could be the son of an archeologist. What really disappoints me is Frances O'Connor who in my opinion should be doing better films than this one.

This film is very average at best but could be a lot worse.


Jacob Zhivov:

I really like Farrelly brothers films because despite the really lewd, out there jokes they make they also have a real moral story to tell about their main characters

Bob (Matt Damon) and Walt (Greg Kinnear) Tenor are small-town legends who excel at sports, and who are the proud owners of a fast-food restaurant where their four hands work the grill at lightning speed. When the acting bug bites Walt, he convinces Bob to honor their childhood pact to never hold back the other, and the brothers head west for the bright lights of Hollywood. Bob and Walt make fast friends with their sexy neighbor, who helps Walt land a grizzled agent whose idea of a prime gig for Walt is a porn film. Things finally begin to look up for Walt when the boys encounter legendary diva and Academy Award winning actress Cher.

Looking to sabotage her new television series, of which she wants no part, Cher casts Walt as her co-star. Instead of dooming the show, Walt propels it to the top of the ratings, and the brothers became instant celebrities. But their real adventure is only beginning, as Bob finds romance with a longtime cyber-pal, and the brothers make a decision that will forever change their lives. Whatever happens to the boys, one thing is certain: nothing will ever come between them.

Unlike some of their other films Stuck on You really does have some truly funny moments. Both Damon and Kinnear are believable as our slightly naïve brothers and get some really good laughs from their interactions.

This is one of those films that will make you laugh and feel good after leaving the cinema, it's a nice sweet funny film.


CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN stars Steve Martin, Bonnie Hunt, Piper Perabo, Tom Welling, Hilary Duff and tons of other people. 99 minutes. Rated G.

ALONG CAME POLLY stars Ben Stiller, Jennifer Aniston, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Alec Baldwin, Debra Messing and Hank Azaria. 90 minutes. Rated M.

UNDERWORLD stars Kate Beckinsale, Scott Speedman, Bill Nighy, Michael Sheen and Shane Brolly. 121 minutes. Rated MA.

OUT OF TIME stars Denzel Washington, Eva Mendes, Sanaa Lathan, Dean Cain and John Billingsley. 105 minutes. Rated M.

TIMELINE stars Paul Walker for some reason. Also Frances O'Connor, Ethan Embry, Anna Friel and Neal McDonough. 115 minutes. Rated M.

STUCK ON YOU stars Matt Damon, Greg Kinnear, Eva Mendes, Cher and Michael Callan. 122 minutes. Rated M. In cinemas February 12.


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