Friday, July 23, 2010


Synopsis: Bad Blake is a broken-down, hard-living country music singer who's had way too many marriages, far too many years on the road and one too many drinks way too many times. And yet, Bad can't help but reach for salvation with the help of Jean, a journalist who discovers the real man behind the musician. As he struggles down the road of redemption, Bad learns the hard way just how tough life can be on one man's crazy heart.

Simpleton Review:  Jeff Bridges won an Oscar  for his portrayal of Bad Blake. After watching CRAZY HEART I think he deserved it. That said - I think he should have won an Oscar for his role as The Dude in THE BIG LEBOWSKI.  

If you are a huge Jeff Bridges fan watch CRAZY HEART. The man can act and carry at tune. I was tapping my feet to his country tunes.  If you are looking for a comedy you might be disappointed. There are parts that are funny but for completely different reasons. Bad Blake is like a gnarly car accident. You can't look the other way but you cringe when you view the carnage. I felt the same way I did when I watched Mickey Roarke in the WRESTLER. Both have characters who were once stars that fade into obscurity. Once Bad Blake rocked out to crowds of fans but now he's a used-up alcoholic playing at hole-in-the-wall dives. It's sad, yet you know he's the only one to blame.

The love interest is Maggie Gyllenhaal is a reporter, and also a single mom, doing a story on Bad Blake. Bridges and Gyllenhaal have chemistry and that can make or a break a movie. Still I had moments of thinking, "Why in hell would a girl like this like this old guy."  He smokes and drinks constantly, pees in a jug, and throws up daily. I guess the smell of a Port-A-Potty turns some women.   


Monday, July 19, 2010


Rated: R [See Full Rating] for strong bloody violence, language and brief nudity
Runtime: 1 hr. 38 min.

Genre: Action & Adventure, Mystery & Suspense, Drama, Horror

Theatrical Release: Jan 8, 2010 Wide

Box Office: $30M

Synopsis: Two-time Academy Award nominee Ethan Hawke plays Edward Dalton, a researcher in the year 2019, in which an unknown plague has transformed the world's... Two-time Academy Award nominee Ethan Hawke plays Edward Dalton, a researcher in the year 2019, in which an unknown plague has transformed the world's population into vampires. As the human population nears extinction, vampires must capture and farm every remaining human, or find a blood substitute before time runs out. However, a covert group of vampires makes  a remarkable discovery, one which has the power to save the human race.
Starring: Ethan Hawke, Willem Dafoe, Sam Neill

Review:  I really wanted to like this movie. The concept is different and I'm a sucker, no pun intended, for vampire flicks.  I didn't.  Five minutes into this thing I wanted to light it on fire and watch it burn like a vampire in sunlight.

What the hell happened to Ethan Hawke? The last movie I liked that he starred in was Training Day. Perhaps Uma hexed him when he allegedly cheated on her with a stripper because his record  has been lackluster ever since. This movie maintains his record. What a turd.

The mention of a turd leads me to our next player, Willem Dafoe.  He was amazing as Elias in Platoon. Now he plays some camaro driving hondo - and badly at that. I cringed everytime he had screen time. His part went over like a fart in church. Bad. Bad. Bad.

The only main character I could stand was Sam Neill. He's good at playing creepy a la his character in Event Horizon. Still not enough to recommend this to my worst enemy.

The bottom line is the plot had potential but was poorly executed. The main players add nothing and you are clapping happily when the credits roll.


Monday, July 12, 2010


 Synopsis: Two-time Academy Award® winner Meryl Streep, Steve 

Martin and Alec Baldwin star in this hilarious look at marriage, divorce and everything in between. Jane (Streep) has three grown kids, a thriving Santa Barbara bakery and an amicable relationship with her ex-husband, Jake (Baldwin). Now, a decade after their divorce, an innocent dinner between Jane and Jake turns into the unimaginable - an affair. Caught in the middle of their rekindled romance are Jake’s young wife and Adam (Martin), a recently divorced architect who starts to fall for Jane. Could love be sweeter the second time around? It’s… complicated! From writer/director Nancy Meyers comes the comedy that critics call 'laugh-out-loud funny' (Rex Reed, The New York Observer).

Review:  It's not complicated. It's simple. The movie is a stinker.

I am not usually a fan of "romantic" comedies. It has to be special, quirky, and a somewhat realistic scenario for me to enjoy it. I had high hopes for this one because it's by writer/producer Nancy Meyers who also wrote and directed Something's Gotta Give starring Diane Keaton and Jack Nicholson. Now that's a pairing that worked. It's called chemistry and Streep and Baldwin have none. 

Together they are unbelievable, stiff, and awkward. A movie should make one get lost and forget they are watching something make believe. All the actors in this were too smiley and robotic. It had no flow and was boring to boot. Streep needs to stick to her drama roots and Baldwin needs to stay put at 3rd Rock. 


Friday, July 9, 2010

The Crazies

Synopsis: Imagine living in a small town where everything is safe and happy…until suddenly it isn’t. Imagine your friends and neighbors going quickly and horrifically insane. In a terrifying tale of the "American Dream" gone horribly wrong, four friends find themselves trapped in their hometown in The Crazies, a reinvention of the George Romero classic directed by Breck Eisner from a screenplay by Ray Wright (Pulse, Case 39) and Scott Kosar (The Amityville Horror, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre).

David Dutten (Timothy Olyphant) is sheriff of Ogden Marsh, a picture-perfect American town with happy, law-abiding citizens. But one night, one of them comes to a school baseball game with a loaded shotgun, ready to kill. Another man burns down his own house…after locking his wife and young son in a closet inside. Within days, the town has transformed into a sickening asylum; people who days ago lived quiet, unremarkable lives have now become depraved, blood-thirsty killers, hiding in the darkness with guns and knives. Sheriff Dutten tries to make sense of what’s happening as the horrific, nonsensical violence escalates. Something is infecting the citizens of Ogden Marsh…with insanity.

My expectations of  The Crazies was close to zero. I must admit that I had no idea it was a remake of a George Romero film. Romero is known for his zombie horror flicks and his zombie classic Night of the Living Dead. The movies I've seen by Romero are not my cup of tea. He set a new trend with N.O.L.D. by showing the zombie chewing and tearing at their victim's flesh - i.e. high gore. I need a good story to engage me. Gore. Meh. 

Had I known The Crazies was a remake of a Romero film I would have assumed  the film would feature zombies. That said, it was a big surprise to realize that's what the crazies are - zombies. These poor town folk are infected when a plane containing a biological weapon crashes in a marsh that feeds into the towns water supply. The closer one is to the main supply the sooner he or she is zombified. 

I thought the movie was entertaining enough as long as you don't ask too many questions. There are more plot holes than a slice of Swiss cheese. It helps that the main characters, Timothy Olyphant (The Perfect Getaway) and Radha Mitchell (Pitch Black), are easy on the eyes. Yes, there is a trend: Timothy Olyphant = hot. 

Bottom Line: Likey       

So you tell me what are your favorite zombie flicks?