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TALL, THE GIRL
BY JACOB ZHIVOV
AUGUST 26, 2004
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Let it be known (for the small number of people who
don't) that I am a wrestling fan. I watch the shows, the Pay per Views
and yes I have my own belt. So now with my biases know let me say
that Walking Tall is not a bad film.
Walking Tall is based on the real life events of Buford
Pusser a young sheriff who could not be bought or beaten by criminals
and ended up paying a huge price for this stance not only with horrible
disfiguring wounds, but the murder of his wife, Pauline. He stood
up for what he believed in and paid much for it.
In this version our hero is Chris Vaughan (Dwayne "The
Rock" Johnson) a former member of the U.S. Army Special Forces
who returns to his small hometown in rural Washington State. He discovers
that much has changed and the mill which was once the major source
of jobs and income for the town has closed. The town is now besieged
by drugs, outbreaks of violence and a general feeling of malaise and
terror, with many pointing a finger at the influence of a crooked
casino owner and old high school rival, Jay Hamilton (Neal McDonough).
After being horribly attacked Chris decides to run for Sheriff and
"clean up" the town.
This situation is quite a realistic one as many small
town often really on a single company for its jobs. In Canberra most
of the people who live there either work for the government or in
an industry to support people who work for the government like restaurants
and clothing stores. So it can be understandable that when the company
closes down the whole town is effected. Flint, Michigan is one such
town which has suffered by a big company leaving, Newcastle, NSW as
well. Nowadays many people in Flint are unemployed and the town itself
has been prone to drugs and crime.
This version of Walking Tall doesn't show the harsh
real life story of Buford Pusser, if you want to see that version
then rent the 1973 version of Walking Tall and it's two sequels, instead
we get a concise "action" film. It is not bad, it does try
to give you some character and story development but in my opinion
needed to be a little longer than the 86 minute run time. The Rock
can act and he didn't need to really on the fights scenes to make
this film enjoyable to watch. Walking Tall is a good action film,
it will never win an Oscar but if you're wanting to see you probably
didn't care about that anyway.
It's not a bad film and hey at least you get to see
a guy beat people up with a piece of wood.
I won't deny it, I heard about The Girl Next Door and
instantly wanted to see it. Why? Because I've always found the geek
gets girl genre of films highly amusing and this time the girl was
supposably a porn star and she's being played by TV show "24"
hot chick Elisha Cuthbert.
Here's our story, Matthew (Emile Hirsch), is a straight
lase 18 years old who wants a career in politics. Up until now he
hasn't had anything to damage his squeaky clean image, unfortunately
this means he really boring. Suddenly, 19-year-old Danielle (Elisha
Cuthbert) move in next door and his life is turned completely upside
down when he discovers she is a former porn star and her producer/ex
boyfriend wants her to come back to the biz.
This film is completely formulaic but you have to completely
relish in that fact or else you won't enjoy this film. The best parts
are with Matthew's best friend Eli played by Chris Marquette as his
friend Elis who knows everything there is to know about porn, he has
some really good one liners in this film. He also reminds me of what
our own travelling Chief of Staff was like back in school. The other
person who steals this movie is Timothy Olyphant who plays sleazy
porn producer Kelly.
The Girl Next Door is an OK film if you're up for something
stupid to see. Plus for the guys you have lots of shots of Elisha
Cuthbert in low cut tops and the like, so that will at least be worth
the price of admission.
WALKING TALL stars Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson,
Johnny Knoxville, Kristen Wilson, Neal McDonough & Ashley Scott.
It is rated M. Runs 86 minutes.
THE GIRL NEXT DOOR stars Elisha Cuthbert, Emile Hirsch,
Timothy Olyphant, James Remar & Paul Franklin Dano. It's rated
M and runs 108 mins.