Posts Tagged ‘John Mahoney’

Say Anything… – Minute Movie Review

Freitag, Oktober 8th, 2010

Review:

Lovable loser John Cusack decides to date high school valedictorian Ione Skye. Surprisingly, she actually agrees to this. What follows is a sweet story about first love, combined with some unnecessary dramatic elements and some clever dialogue. Young John Cusack is adorable and his character Lloyd Dobler might be the most sought-after guy in movie history. Written and directed by Cameron Crowe, the film showcases his raw talent for emotionally touching stories, without ever achieving greatness, for it is too mired in mediocrities.

Random Observations:

Say Anything… at the IMDb

Well, will you look at that. This really has been “80s teen comedy week”.

John Cusack’s sister is played by Joan Cusack, his real life sister. Sort of like Maggie and Jake Gyllenhaal in Donnie Darko. Only much earlier.

Crowe already displayed his interest in music here. An interest that earlier and later culminated in Almost Famous, the somewhat biographical film about his experiences of working for Rolling Stone as a teenager.

The Hudsucker Proxy – Minute Movie Review

Sonntag, Februar 7th, 2010

Review:

After the owner and president of Hudsucker Industries jumps out of a window, the board decides to install an imbecile in the job to devalue the stock so they can buy the majority chair. But the man comes up with a brilliant idea (if you have seen the poster, you can guess what it is) and saves the company – at least for a while. But things never work out the way one expects. The film is a hilariously funny comedy that is somewhat diminished by the need to have a halfway coherent plot with a happy ending, resorting to fantasy to manage to get out of the many holes it dug. Nevertheless, the film is absolutely brilliant and should have firmly established the Coen Brothers as the leading comedy filmmakers of their time.

Random Observations:

The Hudsucker Proxy at the IMDb

John Goodman has a small cameo here and is credited as Karl Mundt, the name of his character in Barton Fink.

Also with a small cameo: the always awesome Steve Buscemi.

The dialogue in this film may be some of the funniest in the history of the medium.

I love how Tim Robbins, playing the lead guy, goes around showing people his circle, claiming that it is a great idea.

Sam Raimi, acclaimed horror (and Spider-Man) director, co-wrote the script with the Coen Brothers, almost ten years before the film was made.

I’m fairly certain that this film will prove to be even better on repeat viewings. It seems like one of the things it has in common with The Big Lebowski, which it precedes in many ways.

Barton Fink – Minute Movie Review

Sonntag, Januar 31st, 2010

Review:

Barton Fink just has a major hit on Broadway and taking his agent’s advice to cash in on that, he moves to Hollywood to work as a screenwriter. But he wants to write about the common man and not be caught up in the artificial world of Tinseltown, so he stays at a common hotel and turns to his neighbour, who claims to sell insurance, for inspiration. The film, written by the Coen Brothers while struggling to finish the screenplay for Miller’s Crossing, is the darkest comedy imaginable about Hollywood, writing, the desire of an intellectual elite to not lose touch with reality, and especially the blindness for inspiration writers and other creative types can often suffer from. If you can connect to any of that, you will enjoy this film, if you cannot, you’d probably consider it boring.

Random Observations:

Barton Fink at the IMDb

The film is set in 1941, but unlike in other Coen Brothers films, the specific setting doesn’t really feel necessary. It could really take place any time, even though Fink’s desire for stories about normal people instead of Kings and the like certainly has been fulfilled in the last six decades.

The funniest characters in the film are the bit players – studio mogul Michael Lerner, big-shot producer Tony Shalhoub and hotel page Steve Buscemi.

The film is also a quite gripping thriller, although that part didn’t really fit in with the overall tone for me.

In the Line of Fire – Minute Movie Review

Samstag, August 15th, 2009

Review:

30 years after Kennedy’s assassination, the only secret service agent still active is selected by a psychotic master criminal for a game of “save the current president”. The result is a thriller that lives by the supreme performances of the two leads, Clint Eastwood and John Malkovich, who make for a gripping and suspenseful thriller that tries to stay as close to reality as possible.

Random Observations:

In the Line of Fire at the IMDb

Why is it that extremely American films like this one in the 1990s were all directed by German directors? Wolfgang Petersen is responsible for this one as well as Air Force One while Roland Emmerich directed Independence Day.

Was Rene Russo the “it” girl of the early 90s or what? I wonder what happened to her since.

Fun facts: The first film that was actually advised by the real Secret Service. And the last film Clint Eastwood acted in that he didn’t also direct.

Minute Movie Review – The Iron Giant

Mittwoch, April 22nd, 2009

Review:

In 1957, a boy with an overactive imagination discovers a metal giant in the forest. They become friends, while the rest of the small town and especially a government agent just see a threat in him. An animated film that is made for children, yet never stoops to the dumbing down of Disney and Dreamworks, it tells a story of friendship, loyalty and not listening to fear and hate. Beautifully combining hand drawn and computer generated images, the film is funny, yet manages to teach a lesson about humanity without ever becoming preachy or obvious.

Random Observations:

The Iron Giant at imdb.com

I’m not too happy with the ending. (Spoilers ahead!) After the giant sacrifices himself to stop a nuclear bomb from destroying the city and killing everybody there, he begins re-assembling himself. Wouldn’t it have been better if you could just imagine that? After all, we see that he can do that earlier.

The movie died an early death at the box office, despite strong critic support – or maybe because of it – and was probably one of the reasons that smart animated family movies are nearly gone now. (Even Pixar isn’t what it used to be.)