New Reviews

Color Me Kubrick; The Hills Have Eyes II; Into Great Silence; Journey From the Fall; Pride; TMNT; What Love Is


JOURNEY FROM THE FALL
The fall of the title is that of South Vietnam and the journey is the long and arduous trek to America undertaken by one persecuted family—the wife, mother, and son of an unrepentant counter-revolutionary—while their absent patriarch rots in a Communist "re-education" camp. Beautifully made and sincere to a fault, Journey From the Fall comes touted by its writer-director, Ham Tran, as the Vietnamese equivalent of Schindler's List; in reality, the film carries stronger echoes of The Joy Luck Club, as it juxtaposes grueling torture and heroic escape against the sometimes equally Sisyphean struggles of settling into a new life in a new country. Such intentions can't be faulted, and Tran's film is laudable as one of the few movies to depict Vietnam and its aftermath through the eyes of the Vietnamese. But at a moment when directors as varied as Clint Eastwood, Paul Verhoeven, and Ken Loach are discovering innovative and meaningful ways of dramatizing the great man-made atrocities of the 20th century, Tran's reliance on declamatory political dialogue and movie-of-the-week inspirationalism feels decidedly old-fashioned and, finally, even phony. (Scott Foundas) (Edwards Westminster)


TMNT
There may be no finer phrase in the English language than "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles," but given how kids these days are super into that whole Internet thing, the latest adventures of the crime-fighting, sewer-dwelling, slang-dropping pop-culture phenomenon is called simply TMNT. Unlikely to achieve BFF status with the MMORPG set, this CGI feature is light on the LOL factor, heavy on the ADD action scenes, and, like, TOOIFM (Totally Out Of Its Freakin' Mind). To wit: 3,000 years ago, a power-mad warrior opened a nasty magic portal that granted him immortality, turned his four brothers into stone, and unleashed 13 monsters upon his foes. Cut to the present, where the immortal warrior turned melancholy industrialist (voiced by Patrick Stewart) has rounded up his rocky brethren and enlisted Karai (Ziyi Zhang) and her ninja Foot Clan to capture the monsters, thereby reversing the curse. Meanwhile, the color-coordinated turtle dudes reunite to foil the plot with the help of Splinter (Mako), their Fu Manchu rat guru, and two dorky, white kids (Sarah Michelle Gellar, Chris Evans). Oodles of madcap digi-fu ensues, along with some halfhearted life lessons for the heroes in a half shell. Writer-director Kevin Munroe parties like it's 1989, grooving on the Xtreme sports set pieces and vintage slang to generally cowabusted effect. (Nathan Lee) (Countywide)


WHAT LOVE IS
Mars Callahan's 10-character rant about modern relationships sounds like it was researched by eavesdropping on the restroom chatter at a high school prom. Tom Riley (Cuba Gooding Jr.) comes home on Valentine's Day to find his three-year relationship over. Enter his four best friends, who try to cheer him up with a seemingly endless bull session, followed by the arrival of five hot chicks who stop by (inexplicably) to talk about blowjobs. Shooting with four cameras on a single set, Callahan attempts to break his script's stagy monotony by applying Guy Ritchie-style editing to tired—and lengthy—"Isn't it crazy how girls/guys don't understand each other?" speeches. (In another artful touch, the obligatory black female character introduces each new dating clichť with the phrase "Just like my mama always said...") The level of insight and grace in this romantic comedy's dialogue makes the oeuvre of Ed Burns look like Racine. Callahan's previous effort, Poolhall Junkies, was also laughably bad, but at least it featured billiards and Christopher Walken; What Love Is contains lots of talk about balls. (James C. Taylor) (Countywide)  

« Previous Page
 |
 
1
 
2
 
All
 
My Voice Nation Help
0 comments
 

Now Showing

Find capsule reviews, showtimes & tickets for all films in town.

Box Office Report

Join My Voice Nation for free stuff, film info & more!

Loading...