Review: United 93

United 93This year will be the 5th anniversary of the tragedies which occurred on September 11, 2001. No one living in the United States can say they’ve forgotten what happened on 9/11, but it’s far enough in the past where a movie could be released about the event. United 93 is the story of the only hijacked plane not to reach its target that day.

The film was created in actual time from the time the flight left the ground to the time it was met it’s fateful fall. United 93 honors the brave men and women aboard United Airlines flight 93 and serves as a memory of everyone else who lost their lives on September 11th.

I don’t want to go into details about the movie, but it was brilliantly produced. The way in which scenes were filmed really gave you an idea of how chaotic and out of the ordinary the day’s events were for those attempting to figure out what was happening in the air. When the movie ended there were a few words displayed about the film and the events of that day. Once the credits started to roll nobody in the theater knew what to do. Not a word was spoken. As we walked out the door my friend Tom remarked, “This is the first time I’ve left a movie and felt like I was leaving a funeral.” United 93 is a powerful movie, which brings back memories of the events which have changed our lives forever. Don’t wait for the DVD…go see it in a theater when you get a chance.

Review: Crash

Crash (Widescreen Edition)Movies like Crash are what keep me watching different movies all the time. This is not your typical movie where good guys win over bad guys and we have a happy ending.

Crash is a modern day tale of morality. The entire movie is based on racism in the lives of people from different backgrounds and how they come into contact with one another. The cast has some top stars that step down from their typical roles for the purpose of getting a message across to the audience. Sandra Bullock is the biggest star in the movie and she only ends up saying a few lines.

It really is a tough movie to explain because you need to watch it in order to understand. And by watch it, I mean the entire thing. About 1/3 of the way through the movie I was thinking, “I know we have racism in the world and I don’t need this movie to tell me about it. What’s the point here?” I caught myself looking at the DVD player several times to see how far along the film was. Soon after it started to get interesting though. The story requires a lot of background information on each of the characters and the producers did a great job of setting it all up.

Crash starts off with Don Cheadle’s character explaining the term “crash” and this really helps to set up the rest of the movie. As you get through the second half you come to realize what he meant by his explanation. This movie is an eye opener on some levels, but it was also a very entertaining watch. I give it an A-.

Review: Catch Me If You Can

Catch Me If You Can (Widescreen Edition)I’ll be the first to admit I’m not a fan of Leonardo DiCaprio, but way back when I first saw previews and clips for Catch Me If You Can, I was interested to see the movie.

I thought the movie was a good fit for Leonardo and I actually enjoyed his acting. The role was a good one for him. He seemed to work well with Tom Hanks, who played a good part too. Come to think of it, the only other movie I can name from DiCaprio was Titanic. So maybe my dislike for him was made up or based on seeing him in the news.

Catch Me If You Can is a good movie that keeps you wondering how he’ll get caught. Will Hanks pull off some excellent detective work? Will DiCaprio screw up? The movie is based on a true story which makes it all that more interesting. How did such a young kid con so many people?

The movie is a nice change of pace from the normal action or comedy type films. Give it a watch sometime. I’ll grade it with a B.

I Hate Seagulls

Songs from the Crystal CaveI’m also starting to feel the same way about Steven Seagal. I’ve been a long time fan of Seagal. It all started when I watched Under Siege with my Dad as a kid. After that I saw every Seagal movie that came out. But over the past 5 years or so (since Under Siege 2: Dark Territory), the only decent movie he’s been a part of was Exit Wounds.

Now I find out that Seagal is putting out a CD? I can only imagine what it sounds like. Wake up and smell the coffee Steve, your career was over years ago.

Review: The Dukes of Hazzard

Dukes of Hazzard

The Dukes of Hazzard (Unrated Widescreen Edition)I remember watching the TV series all of the time as a kid. The Dukes and the General Lee were my heroes because they always saved the day. When I first heard a movie was coming out I was excited. I was even more excited when I saw the cast. Johnny Knoxville, Seann William Scott, Jessica Simpson, Burt Reynolds, and Willie Nelson all played big roles in the film.

Going into the movie I was expecting something entertaining. The Dukes of Hazzard delivered in that area as well as being pretty damn funny. Johnny Knoxville and Seann William Scott worked well together as the Bo and Luke Duke. Jessica Simpson was great eye candy in the role of Daisy Duke, but she does not have a future career in movies. I was a bit disappointed in the choice of Burt Reynolds for Boss Hogg. In the TV series, Boss Hogg was a shorty chubby guy where Reynolds is much taller and in reasonable shape.

If you were a fan of the original TV show you should enjoy the movie. Make sure you stay after the film and watch the credits for some bloopers. I give it a B+.

Review: After the Sunset

After the Sunset (Widescreen Edition) (New Line Platinum Series)When renting a few movies last week I was asked if I wanted to grab a $1 rental for free. I turned around and After the Sunset was the first DVD I spotted, so I took it. The free movie turned out to be better than the two new releases which cost $2.50 each.

I’ve always liked Pierce Brosnan movies and this was no different. The cast also included a hot Salma Hayek, Woody Harrelson, and Don Cheadle. The action was good and the humor was laughable. It’s a typical theif vs. enforcement agent type of movie, but the comedy adds a nice touch. I give it a B.

Review: The Ring Two

The Ring Two (Unrated Widescreen Edition)I really liked The Ring when it came out in theaters, but The Ring Two is horrible. The story gets all twisted and doesn’t make much sense. This is a case where the producers should have stopped after one film.

For a what was supposed to be a scary movie, TR2 was a letdown. I only jumped during one scene and it didn’t even fit in with the story. I wouldn’t waste the time to watch it again and neither should you. I give it a D.

Review: Sin City

Sin CityQuentin Tarantino comes along as a special guest director for Sin City. The movie definitely has a Tarantino feel to it. It’s unlike any other movie you’ve ever seen. Looking at IMDb I noticed that Sin City 2 and Sin City 3 are planned for the future. It’ll be interesting to see how each movie follows along after the first.

I had been told that Sin City was different by almost everyone who had seen it. “Different” isn’t quite the right word. This movie is shown in black and white for the most part with color added here and there to draw your attention. One character’s lips are red, another’s eyes are blue, and another’s hair is gold blonde. The B&W along with color added in specific places really makes Sin City stand out. The story is a bit twisted but it’s entertaining and kept my interest.

I wouldn’t say that I’d watch the movie again, but it was good enough to watch. With a cast that includes Jessica Alba, Devon Aoki, Rosario Dawson, Benicio Del Toro, Michael Clarke Duncan, Josh Hartnett, Michael Madsen, Brittany Murphy, Clive Owen, Mickey Rourke, Bruce Willis, and Elijah Wood how can you go wrong? It’s virtually a who’s who of Hollywood. I give the movie a B.

Review: Into The Sun

Into the SunOver the past few years, Steven Seagal’s movies have sucked. I’ve been a fan of his movies ever since I saw Under Siege, but with his recent lack of hits he is not even in my top five list of favorite actors anymore. With that said, Into the Sun was actually a decent movie.

Some of the other Seagal movies I’ve seen in the last two or three years have been downright horrible. I should know better than to watch one of his movies that didn’t make it to the big screen. What can I say though? I’m a fan. Or…I was. At least Into the Sun had Seagal doing his own voice-overs for the entire film, unlike previous films.

There is a lot of action, but nothing I’ve never seen before from Seagal. The story is nothing special, but kept me semi-interested. I give the movie a C-.