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Canyons [Blu-ray] [Import]

2.8 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Language: English
  • Region: Region A/1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Studio: MPI HOME VIDEO
  • Average Customer Review: 2.8 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
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Customer Reviews

2.8 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Most people would only go to see this movie basically because Lindsay Lohan is in it and are curious to see how far she has fallen. Well, she did a pretty convincing job playing Tara, a failed and aging actress who latches onto a rich guy she doesn't particularly care for. She provides him with sex and agrees to threesomes and foursomes (which becomes clear she doesn't really like all that much) and in return she gets a nice place to live, money to spend and a fancy car to drive. I wonder if the actress Lohan sees the irony in the role she is playing, which is basically herself. I doubt it, but she does a good job. James Deen also does a good job in his role of a controlling jerk who slowly unhinges when the situation devolves to such a point where he isn't actually in control of anything. The plus side to his performance is that as a porn actor he isn't shy about doing frontal nudity, and we hardly ever get to see a penis in any mainstream movie because "it isn't part of the story line). Try telling that to all the boobs and vag we see all the time in just about every made nowadays.

Director Schader does a really good job of putting all these elements together into an appealing final product. It isn't art, but it isn't garbage either. I have always liked his work, from Cat People, to Hardcore to Hearst etc. So this wasn't a disappointment. I recommend it, but only if you can get past Lohan's offscreen antics. Then you might be able to see the little gem hidden behind all the gossip.
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By EA Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on Feb. 24 2014
Format: DVD
There are bad movies that make you angry. There are bad movies that make you laugh. And then... there are bad movies that make you feel a little depressed and icky, but mostly just bored.

"The Canyons" is the last kind -- a hollow low-budget melodrama that begins and ends with empty pretension. It has roughly the same kind of story (shallow rich people, sex, murder) that Bret Easton Ellis has been writing for the past several decades, centering on a rapidly deteriorating Lindsay Lohan and her smoker's croak.

Rich brat/movie producer Christian (James Deen) is in a relationship with Tara (Lohan), an aging party-girl who desperately wants the financial security he gives her. Every night, Christian brings in other people (both male and female) to have sex with Tara while he watches, and sometimes they participate in group sex.

Tara convinces Christian to cast struggling actor/bartender Ryan (Nolan Gerard Funk) in his latest schlock movie -- without mentioning that Ryan is her ex-boyfriend, and that she's having a secret affair with him. But Christian suspects what Tara and Ryan are up to -- and he sets out to destroy his rival in any way possible. Even murder.

Even before it was made, "The Canyons" was overshadowed by the forces behind it -- it was written by Ellis, directed by Richard Schrade, and starred the perennial train-wreck Lindsay Lohan in her "comeback." What was more, the movie was funded by Kickstarter and distributed on VOD. This movie could have been on the vanguard of the new wave of entertainment production...

... but to do that, it would have to be good. And it's not.
Read more ›
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Format: DVD
Lohan is James Deen's girlfriend and he is making a movie. She gets Deen to hire her ex-boyfriend and then lies about it. Deen goes crazy which he already is. Lohan shows some bosom and there is a bit of girl-girl. Swearing throughout.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Not what I expected
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x9ceb4f00) out of 5 stars 184 reviews
36 of 41 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9cdf9468) out of 5 stars Promises much, delivers very little Aug. 26 2013
By ceindaco - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
The movie pretends to portray the life of an aspiring model in LA that finds that is not always easy to make it in Hollywood. It starts OK, tries to develop a story with a somewhat complex love triangle. From there though, it goes down really quick, never gets to a point that makes sense, the characters individual stories are never fully explained and the few images that could attract some of the viewers leave you with more questions than answers. I would not call it soft porn since it does not make it that far, even though some scenes are close, but an attempt to tease the viewers that gets lost in the camera movement and angles. Of course the acting is second class, even Lindsay that is the more experienced actress in the movie (and that is saying something) more often than not looks like she is trying too hard. Some of the dialogues are vague and empty and leave you wondering why in the world that scene was even there. Overall, I would not recommend it but if you like independent noir type films; then you can probably find some parts that you like in this movie.
20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9cdc90c0) out of 5 stars The (Not-So-Grand) Canyons Dec 12 2013
By B. Wells - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
With Paul Schrader directing, Brett Easton Ellis penning the screenplay, Lindsay Lohan starring and porn stud James Deen as the leading man, the erotic thriller "The Canyons" seemed like a dicey proposition from the outset. With the exception of Deen, the careers of the others have certainly seen better days; "The Canyons" is unlikely to herald a reversal of fortune for anyone involved. Like a dessicated amalgam of its creators greatest hits--think Schrader's "American Gigolo"/"The Comfort of Strangers"/"Auto Focus" meets Ellis' "American Psycho"/"Rules of Attraction"/"Less Than Zero"--"The Canyons" feels redundant and oddly unsexy. Neither erotic nor a thriller, the film could have been much better in the hands of someone like Brian de Palma, who usually excels at this type of campy, melodramatic trash (except for his unfortunate remake of Alain Corneau's "Love Crime"). To be sure, "The Canyons" would have been a better film, had Schrader and Ellis infused it with even the slightest grain of humor, but they spin their dark take with a deadly earnestness that robs the film of any trace of suspense or pleasure. In the past, Ellis has evinced a snarky, gleefully twisted sense of malice that enlivened even the sketchiest projects but in "The Canyons", it's hard to believe that he actually wrote anything other than a very basic outline of the plot. Certainly, the dialogue is such that the actors often seem to be winging it, ad libbing and spouting scripted bits on the fly. (The atrocious dialogue and barely-there script notwithstanding, Ellis probably still would have made a better director for this material than Schrader).

The acting is not as terrible as I expected it to be. Although there were, reportedly, problems during filming with the notoriously difficult Lohan, I thought she gave a convincing performance as Tara, a failed actress and paramour of trust fund baby/producer wannabe Christian (James Deen). As La Lohan's life has been endless fodder for scandal and gossip lo these many years, it's somewhat disconcerting to watch her playing what seems to be a version of herself. Her fear and desperation seem real, and it's difficult, in this case, to separate the actress from the role she's playing. James Deen, on the other hand, projects the perfect amount of jaded callowness as a spoiled, murderous brat. At first glance, his performance seemed wooden and withdrawn, but the more I watched him, the more I realized that's exactly how some of these guys act in real life: completely self-absorbed and indifferent to anyone else (until the threat of being abandoned pops up). However, there's no real onscreen chemistry between Deen and Lohan, and that's a problem. Christian is supposed to have this overpowering passion for Tara, and even though his "passion" is all about control, it's all talk, all part of the script that doesn't work. Since the role of Christian is obviously stunt casting, real-life porn star, Deen, doffs his duds for some full frontal nudity (so the audience doesn't feel cheated) and Lohan doesn't skimp on flaunting bare breasts (nor does the rest of the cast) but, as I said before, "The Canyons" just isn't sexy. In supporting roles, Nolan Funk, Amanda Brooks and Tenille Houston seem like they wandered over from "Melrose Place"--take that however you want, but I don't mean it as high praise. Director Gus Van Sant, who should have known better, is on hand for all of two minutes as Christian's psychiatrist, but that's not enough to elevate this movie into high, or low, art.

It's also worth noting that John DeFazio's photography does not help the movie. How is it possible to make the hills around Malibu look so dingy? I realize that the budget was very low, but really? Were they going for this low-rent look? Old episodes of "Hart-to-Hart" look better than this movie.

There's a murder in the movie, which could have been interesting, but isn't, and there's a lot of talking on cell phones and texting, all of which echo real life, and all of which bog down the movie in the boring minutiae of real life. "The Canyons" isn't really interesting enough to be a terrible movie, it's just a blah movie, a bad idea that could have made a terrific terrible movie with the right writer and director.
17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9cdaef54) out of 5 stars Writing and Performances Do Not Shine Aug. 26 2013
By Reid - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Interesting ideas, but the writing and acting were sub-standard. Difficult to say whether it was the acting weighing down the writing, or the gravitation field created by the combination of the two that caused the movie to implode.

The makers deserve credit for making this happen outside the studio system with Kickstarter funding, but the quality of the effort has somehow under performed even its $250,000 budget.

The idea of a "post-theatrical" movie is intriguing, but this production made the idea feel like the makers view the future of film closer to pornography than art, and perhaps considering those involved, that was the statement they were attempting to make.
10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9cde7aec) out of 5 stars A realistic American Psycho March 4 2014
By Mary Murrey - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
After the terrible reviews, I was surprised how wonderful this film is. I suspect it has something to do with haters of Lindsay Lohan. She was very good and believable as a young, beautiful woman willing to sell her body ( and thus her spirit) to a man who will 'provide' for her--allow her to live in wealth. She considers working an ordinary, low paying job as hell. The wealthy young man she is living with, Christian, is a sociopath. A hollow man if there ever was one. It's a believable story of the depths people will go to make it in Hollywood, even if 'making it' is a low level producer or actor. The director, Paul Schrader, knows this LA landscape and terrain well, drawing a richly layered yet claustrophobic world. The despicable Christian, the wealthy, gorgeous sociopath, is a realistic Patrick Bateman (Main character of American Psycho). If you liked that film, you should appreciate this one. And Bret Easton Ellis, who wrote the novel American Psycho was the screenwriter for The Canyons.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9cdce27c) out of 5 stars Better than you might expect Nov. 24 2014
By booksy - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD
So, this film is an intriguing cocktail - a great writer (Bret Easton Ellis), on-off train wreck Lindsay Lohan, an esteemed director in the form of Paul Schrader and adult movie star du jour, James Deen. I'd read a detailed article by a writer who was on-set during the making of the movie, which seemed like a tenuous affair, on account of Lohan's unpredictability. Would it/wouldn't it end up getting made? The behind-the-scenes drama ought to be a movie in its own rights if that account is accurate! Obviously Lohan managed to show up (if not always on time), and the film did get finished. The end result is both better than I expected and, in other ways, not as good as I'd expected. So, the 'not as good' - I'd expected it to be far edgier and sexier, on account of the fact Deen was in it (and they also cast other adult stars who'd feel comfortable with nudity). To my mind though, apart from a couple of full-frontals, the film itself wasn't that risque (especially when you consider Lohan's and Deen's characters were fond of threesomes). I'm not quite sure why Deen needed to be cast in the role of Christian - I'd expected more sexual edginess by pure virtue of the fact he was. That's not to say I watched this film because I thought it was going to be akin to soft porn (if you want to see Deen in action, you don't have to watch The Canyons for that) - however, I'd expected it to be rawer in that respect. I'd also expected the film to be darker (after all American Psycho (the novel) was wonderfully dark, yet also amusing). It feels that the movie stopped short of being all it could be.

On the other hand, having read a lot of negative reviews, it's better than some are making out. It's a solid three stars. James Deen was incredibly good in the role - he can act. He was quite creepy and sinister and definitely has mainstream movie star potential. Lohan was also really watchable - although you can't help feeling that she's ruined her acting chops by having so much done to her face. The over-inflated lips and somewhat immobile forehead were off-putting. Even so, she can still act.

For me, I think it sort of fell a bit short on the plot (and I can't believe I'm saying that of something penned by Ellis). I feel that the tension between Lohan and Deen's characters could have been heightened even more, and the descent of Deen's character more pronounced. Without wanting to given anything away, it seemed to go from suspicion/jealousy to OTT very quickly. There needed to be more of a build up in my opinion - and I wanted to see more of the relationship between Christian and Tara. While other characters were instrumental, I just felt that there needed to be more of a building of their relationship in the first instance and then more focus on the unraveling (instead, they were both running round like headless chickens, trying to prove this, that and the other).

Even so, I enjoyed this film. It's certainly not rubbish (and I've seen worse). It proves that Lohan's still watchable and that Deen has potential. In a way, it would have been good to see him in a film totally unrelated to anything sexual - because he wasn't needed, per se, in this movie due to any extreme sexual content - yet his 'day job' meant that I was still semi-viewing him in that capacity. Give him a role where he doesn't need to get his kit off, and that would be really interesting.

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