Monthly Archives: October 2009

The Time Machine (2002)

My Rating: 4.5/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “Astounding, Immersive and realistic – Pearce is one piece of art!

Scientist and inventor Alexander Hartdegen is determined to prove that time travel is possible. His determination is turned to desperation by a personal tragedy that now drives him to want to change the past. Testing his theories with a time machine of his own invention, Hartdegen is hurtled 800,000 years into the future, where he discovers that mankind has divided into the hunter…and the hunted.

The Time MachineBased on the classic science-fiction novel by H.G. Wells, “The Time Machine” stars Guy Pearce (“Memento,” “L.A. Confidential”) in the role of Alexander Hartdegen. Making her feature film debut, Dublin-born singer/songwriter Samantha Mumba stars opposite Pearce as Mara, the woman who befriends Hartdegen in the distant future. The international cast also includes Orlando Jones (“Evolution”), Mark Addy (“The Full Monty”), Phyllida Law (“Saving Grace”), Sienna Guillory (“Kiss Kiss Bang Bang”) and Academy Award® winner Jeremy Irons (“Reversal of Fortune,” “Die Hard: With a Vengeance”).

The Time MachineA co-production of DreamWorks Pictures and Warner Bros. Pictures, “TheTime Machine” marks the live-action directorial debut of Simon Wells, who previously co-directed DreamWorks’ animated hit “The Prince of Egypt.” Wells directed “The Time Machine” from a screenplay by John Logan (“Gladiator”), based on the screenplay by David Duncan. Walter F. Parkes (“Gladiator,” upcoming “Men in Black 2”) and David Valdes (“The Green Mile”) produced the film, with Laurie MacDonald, Jorge Saralegui and Arnold Leibovit serving as executive producers, and John Logan co-producing. The film will be distributed domestically by DreamWorks, with Warner Bros. handling the international release.

Land of the Lost (2009)

My Rating: 2.5/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “Year One and Land of the lost – I didnot find any differences. Crap!

Space-time vortexes suck.

Will Ferrell stars as has-been scientist Dr. Rick Marshall, sucked into one and spat back through time. Way back. Now, Marshall has no weapons, few skills and questionable smarts to survive in an alternate universe full of marauding dinosaurs and fantastic creatures from beyond our world–a place of spectacular sights and super-scaled comedy known as the Land of the Lost.

Sucked alongside him for the adventure are crack-smart research assistant Holly (Anna Friel) and a redneck survivalist (Danny McBride) named Will. Chased by T. rex and stalked by painfully slow reptiles known as Sleestaks, Marshall, Will and Holly must rely on their only ally–a primate called Chaka (Jorma Taccone)–to navigate out of the hybrid dimension. Escape from this routine expedition gone awry and they’re heroes. Get stuck, and they’ll be permanent refugees in the Land of the Lost.

Land of the LostBased on the classic television series created by Sid & Marty Krofft, Land of the Lost is directed by Brad Silberling and produced by Jimmy Miller and Sid & Marty Krofft.

Year One (2009)

My Rating: 2.5/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “2 jungle men, stupid laughs, and a totally jacked off plot!

When a couple of lazy hunter-gatherers (Jack Black and Michael Cera) are banished from their primitive village, they set off on an epic journey through the ancient world in Columbia Pictures’…

Year OneWhen a couple of lazy hunter-gatherers (Jack Black and Michael Cera) are banished from their primitive village, they set off on an epic journey through the ancient world in Columbia Pictures’ comedy Year One. Harold Ramis directs. The screenplay is by Harold Ramis & Gene Stupnitsky & Lee Eisenberg (The Office) from a story by Harold Ramis. The film is produced by Harold Ramis, Judd Apatow, and Clayton Townsend.

Duplicity (2009)

My Rating: 4/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “Smart, Corporate and Sniffingly Thrilling! (What did I just type!!??)


DUPLICITY is a slick, Soderberghian comic caper in which it’s never exactly clear who is being conned. It’s easy to see that ex-CIA agent Claire Stenwick (Julia Roberts) and former MI6 member Ray Koval (Clive Owen) have a heated history together when they embark on an elaborate mission of corporate espionage. Two rival CEOs (played by the always fantastic Tom Wilkinson and Paul Giamatti) are battling for the top spot in their industry, and a top-secret new product would determine who would wear the crown. But this isn’t just about business innovation and profit: Claire and Ray have a plan that would help them get the prized formula and walk away with millions.

DuplicityTony Gilroy’s previous work as screenwriter and director–namely the Jason Bourne films and MICHAEL CLAYTON–didn’t give any indication that he could create something this bouncy and light. But while DUPLICITY is fun, it’s never dumb; it jumps back and forth in time with style, playing an elaborate game that its scheming lead characters would be proud of. As Ray and Claire, Owen and Roberts display the same fiery chemistry that they showed in the gut-punching romantic drama CLOSER, but this time, they play (mostly) nice. If DUPLICITY can draw comparison to the classic genre bender CHARADE, then it’s not a stretch to liken Owen to Cary Grant–he has an easy charm that ensnares not only each woman in the film but everyone in the audience as well.

The Tournament (2009)

My Rating: 3.5/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “Snipers and Silver bullets – A one time worth watching flick!”

The world’s best assassins converge upon the streets of a small Scottish town to compete in a deadly tournament in which the last killer standing gets a million-dollar prize while wealthy thrillseekers watch a live video stream and gamble on the outcome.

The Tournament

The Tournament

Robert Carlyle (TRAINSPOTTING) stars as a local priest who becomes an unwitting participant in the grisly contest in this adrenaline-fueled action film from director Scott Mann.

Crank High Voltage (2009)

My Rating: 4/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “Heart-throbbing and Jason plays a slapstick action menace!”

In the 2006 action hit Crank, hitman Chev Chelios (Jason Statham) spent twenty-four hours in over-drive: fighting, killing, and keeping his adrenaline flowing at full-force to combat a deadly poison injected into his body. Now, in the high-octane sequel Crank High Voltage, Chev has managed to survive — and is about to face a brand new day. Picking up immediately where the first movie left off, Crank High Voltage finds Chev surviving the climactic plunge to his most certain death on the streets of Los Angeles, only to be kidnapped by a mysterious Chinese mobster.

Crank High Voltage

Crank High Voltage

Three months later, Chev wakes up to discover his nearly indestructible heart has been surgically removed and replaced with a battery-operated ticker that requires regular jolts of electricity in order to work. After a dangerous escape from his captors, Chev is on the run again, this time from the charismatic Mexican gang boss El Huron (Clifton Collins, Jr.), and the Chinese Triads, headed by the dangerous 100 year-old elder Poon Dong (David Carradine).

Crank High Voltage

Crank High Voltage

Once again turning to Doc Miles (Dwight Yoakam) for medical advice, receiving help from his friend Kaylo’s twin brother Venus (Efren Ramirez), and re-connecting with his girlfriend Eve (Amy Smart), who is no longer in the dark about what he does for a living, Chev is determined to get his real heart back and wreak vengeance on whoever stole it, embarking on an electrifying chase through Los Angeles where anything goes to stay alive. Lakeshore Entertainment and Lionsgate present Crank High Voltage, a Lakeshore Entertainment / Lionsgate Production In Association with @radical.media; produced by Tom Rosenberg, Gary Lucchesi, Skip Williamson and Richard Wright. The film was written and directed by Mark Neveldine & Brian Taylor, the duo behind the 2006 original.

17 Again (2009)

My Rating: 3.5/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “Hilarious and Compelling!”

What would you do if you got a second shot at life? Class of 1989, Mike O’Donnell (Zac Efron) is a star on the high school basketball court with a college scout in the stands and a bright future in his grasp. But instead, he decides to throw it all away to share his life with his girlfriend Scarlet and the baby he just learned they are expecting.

17 Again

17 Again

Almost 20 years later, Mike’s (Matthew Perry) glory days are decidedly behind him. His marriage to Scarlet (Leslie Mann) has fallen apart, he has been passed over for a promotion at work, his teenage kids think he is a loser, and he has been reduced to crashing with his high school nerd-turned-techno-billionaire best friend Ned (Thomas Lennon). But Mike is given another chance when he is miraculously transformed back to the age of 17. Unfortunately, Mike may look 17 again, but his thirtysomething outlook is totally uncool among the class of 2009. And in trying to recapture his best years, Mike could lose the best things that ever happened to him. New Line Cinema Presents An Offspring Entertainment production, 17 Again, starring Zac Efron, Leslie Mann, Thomas Lennon, Michelle Trachtenberg, Sterling Knight, Melora Hardin and Matthew Perry. The film is directed by Burr Steers from a screenplay by Jason Filardi. The producers are Adam Shankman and Jennifer Gibgot. Toby Emmerich, Mark Kaufman, Keith Goldberg and Jason Barrett are the executive producers, with Dara Weintraub serving as co-producer. The behind-the-scenes creative team is led by director of photography Tim Suhrstedt, production designer Garreth Stover, editor Padraic McKinley and costume designer Pamela Withers Chilton. The music is composed and conducted by Rolfe Kent, and the music supervisor is Buck Damon.

Damage (2010)

My Rating: 4/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “Good performance by Steve Austin and the stunts are bloody realistic!”

Once out of prison, Brickner stats to put his life back together. Finding a job at the local construction site, he gets little respect and little money. Soon enough he falls into a second job as a bouncer at the local bar when he stands up for the lead female character Frankie, who is a smoking hot waitress who gets little respect from the patrons of the bar.

Damage

Damage

Brickner’s imposing physique and obvious skill for fighting catches the eye of Frankie (played by Laura Vandervoort) Soon enough Frankie and friend Reno (played by Walton Goggins) attempt to recruit Brickner into a underground fighting league with promise of major money making potential. Initally Austin’s character shrugs it off as he is attempting to turn over a new leaf.

Damage

Damage

However when the widow of the man Brickner killed contacts him with a way for him to pay his debt to her and her family he quickly finds himself in a situation where he needs money and fast, so into the underground Brickner heads and allows Austin to do what he does best… Whup some butt!

Push (2009)

My Rating: 2/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “Very sci-fi, lots of things are unbelievable and the plot is poor!”

A riveting action-thriller, Push burrows deep into the deadly world of psychic espionage where artificially enhanced paranormal operatives have the ability to move objects with their minds, see the future, create new realities and kill without ever touching their victims. Against this setting, a young man and a teenage girl take on a clandestine agency in a race against time that will determine the future of civilization.

Push

Push

The Division, a shadowy government agency, is genetically transforming citizens into an army of psychic warriors—and brutally disposing of those unwilling to participate. Nick Gant (Chris Evans), a second-generation telekinetic or “mover,” has been in hiding since the Division murdered his father more than a decade earlier. He has found sanctuary in densely populated Hong Kong—the last safe place on earth for fugitive psychics like him—but only if he can keep his gift a secret.

Push

Push

Nick is forced out of hiding when Cassie Holmes (Dakota Fanning), a 13-year-old clairvoyant or “watcher,” seeks his help in finding Kira, (Camilla Belle), an escaped “pusher” who may hold the key to ending the Division’s program. Pushers possess the most dangerous of all psychic powers: the ability to influence others’ actions by implanting thoughts in their minds. But Cassie’s presence soon attracts the attention of the Division’s human bloodhounds, forcing Nick and Cassie to flee for their lives.

With the help of a team of rogue psychics, the unlikely duo traverses the seedy underbelly of the city, trying to stay one step ahead of the authorities as they search for Kira. But they find themselves square in the crosshairs of Division Agent Henry Carver (Djimon Hounsou), a pusher who will stop at nothing to keep them from achieving their goal.

Drag Me To Hell (2009)

My Rating: 3.5/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “Sam Raimi failed here, but I assure the sounds are the scariest ever!”

After nearly two decades of successful detours into mature thrillers (THE GIFT, A SIMPLE PLAN) and superhero blockbusters (the Spider-Man series), director Sam Raimi returns–full tilt–to his scrappy horror roots with DRAG ME TO HELL. Alison Lohman stars as Christine Brown, a soft-spoken Southern girl with a good heart, a PhD-toting boyfriend (Justin Long), and a job as a loan officer at a bank just outside of Los Angeles. When evicting a vile and negligent old woman named Mrs. Ganush (Lorna Raver) seems to be the only way to secure an important promotion, Christine pushes her moral flexibility about as far as it can go (not very far at all) only to dearly pay the price as the recipient of a rather nasty curse.

Drag Me To Hell

Drag Me To Hell

The next three days of Christine’s life amount to an unimaginable endurance test in which she is subject to physical and psychological torture while a terrifying demon draws ever closer to take her to hell, where she would burn for eternity. Raimi manages to keep the feverish awfulness of DRAG ME’s central concept palpable while layering on his distinctly disturbing and exhilaratingly kinetic macabre-meets-slapstick portraiture, and the result is an efficient celebration of the art of horror movies that’s campy, scary, and fun.

Drag Me To Hell

Drag Me To Hell

Similar to HBO’s classic TALES FROM THE CRYPT series, HELL feels like a living, breathing EC comic. While it may come as a minor shock that Bruce Campbell, the beloved mouthpiece of the EVIL DEAD franchise, is nowhere to be found in this unabashed horror-comedy, Christine is an excellent twist on Raimi’s genre-hero archetype. Fans will get a kick out of seeing her inexplicably leave her gob agape as putrid projectiles pour in, and hearing her, after a bit of pushing, spout a Campbell-ism or two (“I’m gonna get me some!”).