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adriana "alisa" (Los Angeles,CA,USA)

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Freaky Friday
Freaky Friday
DVD ~ Jamie Lee Curtis
Prix : CDN$ 5.97
68 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

4.0 étoiles sur 5 A little cheesy, but totally hilarious!, June 23 2004
This review is from: Freaky Friday (DVD)
I didn't expect to enjoy this little Disney film as much as I did, but I thought it was simply hilarious and totally fun!Lindsay Lohan is actually pretty good in the film. But Curtis is absolutely sensational and had me laughing so hard I was crying.I really wish she appeared in films more often-she can be both drop dead funny,equally touching as well.If you're in the mood for a light comedy, I'd definately go with Freaky Friday.Sure it gets a little corny in some parts, but what Disney film doesn't?But its light, and fluffy, and feel-good, and features a total riot of a performance from Jaimie Lee Curtis(who should've won the Golden Globe for best actress in a comedy over Diane Keaton!)

Love Actually (Widescreen)
Love Actually (Widescreen)
DVD ~ Hugh Grant
Offered by Round3CA
Prix : CDN$ 9.10
44 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

4.0 étoiles sur 5 Delightful Movie, June 22 2004
This review is from: Love Actually (Widescreen) (DVD)
I wrote a review earlier bashing Love,Actually. I honestly do not know what I was thinking, I must've been in a crabby mood that day or sumthin', because after another re-watch, I was absolutely delighted by this warm hearted, charming romantic comedy, that, like most romantic comedies leaves you feeling good afterwards.It takes on a few too many characters, and some of the scenarios are a bit improbable; but then again, what romantic comedy isn't guilty of this?As far as the acting goes, it is fantastic across the board.For me, I felt that Emma Thompson stole the show.She has a really beautiful scene set to a sad Joni Mitchell song in which she's all alone in a room on Christmas morning, and she's just found out her husband(Alan Rickman) is having an affair.The scene is wordless, but Thompson breaks your heart.
It would've been nice to get rid of some little sub-plots, and spend some more time with the main characters.The film would've been exceptional if Curtis had done so.But alas, I'll settle for this very charming romantic comedy, that strikes all the right chords and is totally entertaining to watch throughout.While it follows the formula of every other romantic movie out there, there is a humanity,honesty, and realness found here that I have yet to discover in other romantic films.

Mystic River (Widescreen) (Bilingual) [Import]
Mystic River (Widescreen) (Bilingual) [Import]
DVD ~ Sean Penn
Offered by Fulfillment Express CA
Prix : CDN$ 15.35
94 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

2.0 étoiles sur 5 Underwhelming, June 21 2004
Mystic River is the type of movie I really wanted to like. And ten minutes into the whole thing, I was prepared to do just that.But after those brief ten minutes flew by, all my hopes went out the window, and I spent the rest of the two hours simply trying to pay attention.
I think that everyone is familiar with the plot by now, no? But even if not, I don't want to spoil it for those who want to see it still(because I personally hate when that happens).
For me, I found many different things wrong with this movie.For one thing, and this is something I'm getting quite used to comming across, the acting was way overrated.Don't get me wrong, it was "good"< but there was very little about the performances here that moved me.Sean Penn give a totally mediocre performance.His acting is just all over the place; one minute he's a loving devoted father,the next he's stiff as a tree, and the next he's a foul-mouthed gangster.I get that people have "dimension", but this was just too much.I also find myself feeling very little during his "grieving" scenes for his dead daughter.He went over the top, AND YOU COULD ACTUALLY see his making an effort to burst into tears.I'm gonna pretend to find it funny that one reviewer compared Penn to Marlon Brando.He's as much of a Marlon Brando as Sarah Michelle Gellar is Merryl Streep. Kevin Bacon had nothing much to work with, and throughout he just looked lost.Also, the sub plot with his wife who kept calling and not saying anything was dumb, unnecessary, and annoying.Tim Robbins, I think, gave the only believable performance of the bunch.Throughout he was commited and "inside" his character if you know what I mean.As for the supporting cast-Lawrence Fishburne has a nice screen presence, and does good because he's not given much to work with.Marcia Gay Harden-although I never really got to know her character, or her motives, I thought her acting was pretty good, if not a little whiny during some of the emotional scenes.And why the heck was Laura Linney even in this?As Penn's wife, not only was her character cold and unlikeable, she's given about five minutes of screen time, and then she shows up in the end with this big Macbeth speech that runs for about ten minutes!What?Also, he Boston accent was laughable.I happen to like many of the actors here on a regular basis, so something tells me the spotty acting had something to do with the direction-which fails to set a definitive tone for the film, and like the acting jumps all over the place.
I also found this movie emotionless.Like, during Penn's grieving scenes,or the scene where Penn's daughter is found dead, among others(so as not to spoil the plot), I didn't feel a thing.I also had to laugh at the people who said this film was thought-provoking, and "deep".What exactly is deep or thought provoking about it?What does it manage to say that hasn't been said thousands of times before?Not only are its themes not particularly original, the whole film is executed in an even less compelling way-making you simply not care about what it is trying to say,let alone what happens along the way.
The ending could not have been more unfullfilling.The movie never seems to go anywhere-when a good film ends, you're supposed to feel something-anything.I felt nothing when Mystic River wrapped up.I also thought the film was awfully paced-most of it is very slow and uneventful-and then these big climax like events are thrown at you and you're supposed to give a damn.
A couple minor glitches were the atrocious, overwrought,and out of place score which sounded like it should belong in Titanic.And the setting which everyone kept talking about looks like your average studio setting to me.
Mystic River isn't an awful film,but its got some major flaws, and not much on the good side.It is a film with little depth, little emotion,bad pacing, and very overrated acting.Totally missable-I'ms ure you've seen better.

Cousins (Widescreen) (Bilingual)
Cousins (Widescreen) (Bilingual)
DVD ~ Ted Danson
Offered by M and N Media Canada
Prix : CDN$ 34.70
6 used & new from CDN$ 17.41

4.0 étoiles sur 5 Superb and sweet romance, June 21 2004
This is one of those incredibly charming,disarmingly sweet, and totally touching comedic romances that you can watch over and over and over again- and still get that warm and fuzzy feeling inside.The plot is pretty typical, but the entire cast(Isabella and Ted have GREAT chemistry, the dialogue, and just the entire atmosphere of the thing make it work-big time.They just don't make too many romantic comedies like this anymore.Even if you hate the genre, but are just in the mood for something light, I definately recommend this sweet little gem!

The Cooler [Import]
The Cooler [Import]
DVD ~ William H. Macy
Prix : CDN$ 10.92
49 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

4.0 étoiles sur 5 Pretty Fun!, June 19 2004
This review is from: The Cooler [Import] (DVD)
The Cooler is an entertaining, enjoyable flick with good acting,pretty good writing, and a neat plot that moves along nicely and keeps you hooked 'till the very end.
William H. Macy is looking more miserable than ever as Bernie Lootz; he should be-he's a perpetual loser who's given up on all the good stuff in life and is paying off a huge debt to dangerously sleazy casino owner Shelly(Alec Baldwin) by working as a "cooler" in Shelly's casino. Bernie is so unlucky and downtrodden that by merely standing next to the gambler, he brings bad luck, and causes the player to lose money. But when Bernie meets and falls in love with sexy waitress Natalie(Maria Bello), his luck begins looking up. All of a sudden, he's not so insecure, and instead of bringing bad luck to the players, he starts to bring only good luck.When Shelly sees this, and finds out that the two lovebirds are planning to flee from the casino, he's not impressed and what follows is an entertaining,,but at times slightly gruesome romp through the underbelly of Las Vegas casinos.
I think that "The Cooler" is a pretty good film with good acting across the board.Macy, in his low key role is awfully sympathetic; Alec Baldwin is very fun to watch in his gritty role as the sleazy Shelly.And Maria Bello, despite not delving as deep as she could've into her role was awfully charming, and her and Macy worked very well together. Some flaws to put in perspective are a couple unnecessary sub-plots which are never resolved or developed fully, and there is a really stupid moment near the ending which kind of spoils the impact of what you have just seen(not that I'm gonna spoil it for you)> But these flaws, while making The Cooler into a film of lesser quality do not detract from the enjoynment I had when watching it. It's a refreshingly small film by Hollywood standards, and its got more meat on its bones and is more gritty than typical Hollywood fare.It creates the perfect atmosphere, and is all in all a fun film to watch. I warn you that its not all light fluff and that there are a couple of slightly graphic violent moments.Nothing too extreme though. Curl up with "The Cooler" on a rainy weekend night and enjoy!

No Title Available

2.0 étoiles sur 5 It sucks, June 18 2004
When I read things like "one of the best films I've ever seen", I literally feel like the world has been paid by the criticts to pretend to be infatuated by this film. How anyone could even find it even merely likable is beyond me.While not exactly ATROCIOUS, Lost In Translation is a bad movie which provided nothing to think about, no emotion to experience.And when a film isn't emotionally or mentally stimulating, well, you'd hope that it would at least be entertaining.Lost In Translation is barely that.All it is in fact, is some good eye candy with a couple of survivable moments.Which these days, is really all you need to get acclaim.
Sophia Coppola needs to go screw herself.Seriously though, she needs to stop embarassing herself by making her brilliant daddy pay for her career as a director and go work in a shoe store or somethin'. I can't think of a worse director than Sophia Coppola.I cannot think of a worse screen writer than Sophia Coppola.Her transition from scene to scene is awkward; there are a lot of really pointless scenes of the characters doing nothing more than sitting around their hotel rooms and "contemplating" something.Can I ask just what are they contemplating? The script is awful.It's not "subtle", or "Minimalistic" as other fans with glowing reviews have pointed out.It is made up of nothing more than dumb and drab phrases and awkward mumbling which give absolutely no insight to the characters whatsoever.The problem isn't the plot-the problem is that Coppola isn't a smart enough director to do something more capable with the story.As for the actors, they do what they can with the material they're given, and I don't have anything good or bad to say about them except that Murray's oscar nomination was ridiculous.Walking around and being Bill Murray isn't called great acting.
Many reviewers and critics alike have commented on how "anti-Hollywood" Lost In Translation is for never allowing the two characters to sleep together.Let me tell you something.There is nothing striking or "anti-Hollywood" about that because the viewer never really cares if the two sleep together or have any interaction of the sort whatsoever.There is no sexual tension between the two, and the chemistry is half-decent.I never really cared if they slept together,fell in love, etc. or not.
I don't know how this got so hyped.When I think about it, its almost funny how garbage(albeit garbage thats been wrapped in pretty paper) like this gets such acclaim.And then I think of the glowing critics' reviews, Coppola's oscar, and all the numerous accolades and nominations and I almost want to cry. I am one passionate film lover, and I am able to love any film that is good; national boundaries or genres have no meaning for me if a film is good.Lost In Translation is a bad film.It is awfully written and directed, and save for a couple of solid performances, its pretty much a failure. I wouldn't go to the extreme of saying that its the absolute worst film I'v ever seen, but its nothing worth renting, let alone discussing or praising.

Blue Car [Import]
Blue Car [Import]
DVD ~ David Strathairn
Offered by TUNESUS
Prix : CDN$ 10.88
7 used & new from CDN$ 6.19

4.0 étoiles sur 5 A small film with quiet strength, June 18 2004
This review is from: Blue Car [Import] (DVD)
Blue Car is a small little indie film that is short in length, and has no action, excitement, or mindblowing climaxes.It is however very well acted,sharply written, and quietly strong.
The plot is as simple as they come.Meg (Agnes Bruckner) is a quiet,lonely 16 year old girl who dreams of being a poet.She lives with her stressed single mother(Margaret Colin), and her emotionally damaged younger sister.Her life is bland and rather joyless.Enter Mr. Auster (David Strathairn), Meg's English teacher who regognizes Meg's blossoming talent, and sympathizes with her lonliness.In Mr. Auster Meg finds comfort and a mentor, and needless to say their relationship develops into something more than just a student teaCher interaction.
Like I said before this film is very short, and despite dealing with sadness and tough subjects Blue Car never gets melodramatic or overwrought.It had a tight script which held everything together well and great acting all around.Agnes Bruckner is very,very good in her lead role.Subtle and quietly intense,sullen and full of angst-she nails this role and captures your heart without ever milking for sympathy.I'm still wondering as to why she hasn't gotten more acclaim-she's a very talented young actress.David Strathairn was perfect in his role.Strathairn is a smart enough actor to give his character enough dimension and complexity that you aren't able to completely hate him in moments that you should.And Margaret Colin, as Meg's mother was just great as the weary mother.All the acting felt very natural, and understated enough to provide the movie with earnestness and an honest quality missing in many films. The denoument was a little harsh, but totally realistic.And by the end of the film, despite it being realistic and not partcularly "feel-good", I did feel a quiet hope for our heroine.
Blue Car isn't going to change your life, but its a very fresh little film with great acting and a quiet honesty that isn't found in many films nowadays.Recommended.

2002 En Toute Intimite Live
2002 En Toute Intimite Live
Prix : CDN$ 14.46
8 used & new from CDN$ 14.46

5.0 étoiles sur 5 SHE IS SIMPLY INCREDIBLE LIVE..., June 18 2004
And I mean truly live, not as in "live recording">I got the marvelous opportunity to see Lara live at a small music house a couple of months ago, and it was one of, if not the most splendid,moving, involving live concerts I've ever been to.Even more surprising if you consider that I've never owned a single album from Fabian, and that the only guide I had were a couple of songs which I dubbed "well-sung". Well, I gotta say, that Lara is a one in a million type of gal-and she blows those way past their prime divas mariah,whitney,celine,etc way out of the water.Because the moment she stepped out onto the stage,dressed in a modestly simple black dress,barefoot, with nothing but a grand piano, and a couple of excellent violinists accompanying her, when she stepped out onto the stage and opened her mouth to sing, it was obvious that here was a singer of the highest caliber-a real and true musician who had nothing more on her agenda but to sing her heart out and share her strong,beautiful voice through her expertise,emotive delivery.And I'll never,ever,ever forget the moment when her band walked off the stage,Lara dropped the microphone,dropped to the ground, clutching her heart, and simply SANG.I HAD tears in my eyes, my stomach hurt-I was simply wrenched.Well, I'll stop now, since I know how bad I'm making you all who have never had the chance to see Lara live feel(right), but after the concert was over, I bought this live disc.It's excellent, but it still dims when I think back to how INCREDIBLE she sounded in concert.But I guess if you never see her perform in actual concert then the impact of this live disc will be greater.Not to say that this disc isn't good-its wonderful, and she sounds spectacular(but nowhere near how INCREDIBLE how she sounded live...ok, I'll shut up now).
If you love music which falls under a genre called simply beautiful music then you simply cannot fall in love with this subtley beautiful disc.Every number is sublime-Lara's delivery is wondrous-she has the voice that every diva can dream of, but unlike many other singers who shout for all its worth, Lara knows that subtlety can pay off big time; she never milks her vocals for all their worth and focuses more on trnascending emotion and meaning and feeling than showing off how many notes she can sing per minute-and believe me that she has every right to do that, with her range and prowess and whatnot.
This whole CD is in French, and I don't speak a word, but,(and this is a true testament to Lara's power as a singer) I feel every word coming from her mouth-I genuinely feel lifted by her,I repeat beautiful singing, and deeply felt deliverance.And if you like fast,brash and loud music which is the equivalent of the modern American blockbuster, well, you definately will not find it here.Every song is a slow ballad with nothing more than piano, and the occational swelling string accompanying it.And even if you're not like me, and you prefer more upbeat music, I believe that you will nonetheless be able to fall in love with En Toute Entime because the music is as stunning,melodicaly lyrical and richly emotive as they come.And if you associate the word ballad with Mariah and Whitney, think again, because Lara has a much quieter,much more subtle approach.Not a single number is overblown, or melodramatic-and the accompaniment is a wonderful melodic counterpart and helps reveal the music's beauty even more.If you're familiar with Charles Aznavour or French chanson, then that should give you a clue as to how the music sounds.And even though every song is a slow tempo one, don't be fooled.Every song is different from the last; there are quite a few remakes, and even an opera number which Lara pulls of with breathtaking ease.
I won't blab anymore.If you like good music, then get this album and drown in its simpleness,its beauty,it sweet sublimity and soulfulness; and Lara's awe-inspiring vocal talent/And(and I don't care if you've never heard of her in your life), if you have to sell your soul, you HAVE to see this woman live.I can't express how incredible that experience will be.Lara is so good-she serves as more proof that, just as with film nowadays, whilst some tripe gets played out,awarded, and talked about, the truly inspiring,breathtaking, and unforgettable talent that real artistic lovers are searching for are to be found far away from the mainstream world.

Alex & Emma (Widescreen) [Import]
Alex & Emma (Widescreen) [Import]
DVD ~ Luke Wilson
Offered by vidco
Prix : CDN$ 5.73
45 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

3.0 étoiles sur 5 fluff, June 13 2004
Alex and Emma is a fluffy little comedy with two relatively charming leads, and a tolerable, entertaining plot which is pleasant enough for a saturday night in.
Sure, don't expect anything intelligent or strikingly original, but, its no worse than most of the other romantic fluff that comes out, and its a pleasant enough diversion that will keep you distracted for an hour and a half.

Big Fish (Bilingual) [Import]
Big Fish (Bilingual) [Import]
DVD ~ Ewan McGregor
Offered by importcds__
Prix : CDN$ 9.45
48 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

3.0 étoiles sur 5 Entertaining, but emotionally stiff, June 13 2004
Big Fish is a pretty fun movie.It's entertaining, and visually delightful, has Albert Finney in top form, and enough quirky characters to satisfy the eccentric viewer.
But while I enjoyed the overall experience of watching Big Fish, I never really related to any of the characters, or felt emotionally moved, or involved by any of it.And, despite the acting being solid from pretty much everybody, I think that if it wasn't for Albert Finney's wry, dry, and touching performance as the older father,Big Fish wouldn't have succeeded as well as it did on the basis of quirky characters and great eye candy. Ewan McGregor,overworks his Southern accent, and goes through the enitre film on one note. He was alright, but, for me, he tried a little too hard to be charming.Jessica Lange is a great actress, but she's pretty wasted here as Finney's wife. Billy Crudup, as Finney's son was, again, solid, but somewhat annoying.I also thought the ensemble cast had very little chemistry-it almost felt like Burton placed a bunch of strangers into one house.I also thought that Big Fish got a little too sentimental towards the end-begging for emotion that had not been warranted throughout the film.And the voice overs by Billy Crudup just did it for me-they were TOTALLY pointless and just seemed to squander whatever pleasure I got from watching the film. I know what was going on during the film; I know what you did pal, and what you must've learned-I do NOT need you to tell me.
All in all, while this is a film which did not do anything for me on the emotional front, I liked its quirkiness, and Albert Finney's performance.I thought it moved along nicely, and kept me entertained.But, your enjoynment of the film will really depend how much of a sucker you are for great scenery, and if you're like me, (and I go weak in the knees from sweet eye candy)you'll be able to enoy Big Fish that much more.

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