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The Flick Chick
Films with titles beginning with "V" and "W"
Hey, I don't know about you, but I'm ready to sit on the sofa in my jammies, eat a jelly sandwich, and be scared out of my wits! And I want to doll up and put on my high-heelers and sit in the dark with a nice warm male arm around my shoulders and giggle my head off. I want to hang with the gang and sneer at guys chasing spies and making a mess of it. I want to sigh over love scenes, to feel my heart beat faster, to be inspired, to be touched, to turn off my brain for a couple of hours and have a really good time.
Don't you? Let's do!
Do you like vampires, werewolves, Frankenstein's monster, dark & dreary castles in Transylvania, scary demons & general gothic horror? Van Helsing's got it.
Like great-looking semi-naked flying chicks? Got that, too.
Like over-the-top send-ups of old films? Van Helsing's got it all! My companion and I were laughing a good bit of the time . . . but maybe you won't laugh. After all, the Chick laughed during Kill Bill, too. No accounting for taste, I always say. (5/04)
Be warned that there are head games in continuous play throughout this film. This is more than the "Fatal Attraction" that the teasers promise. Tom Cruise, always an aesthetic pleasure to watch, is apparently trying to graduate from his long-lived ingenue status to something more solid. Not quite there yet, I think, but this is a noble effort. He hides his distracting good looks in a variety of ways, and this film plays on that theme: its repeated mantra is "Open your eyes," as it asks how much are we moved by what we see and how much does the visual image influence our thinking? Placed slightly in our immediate future (full laser image of Satchmo stands among party guests as he horns into its musical theme, for example), it may be a stretch for those who actively detest any hint of SF, but I enjoyed it. (1/2/02)
War of the Worlds
Not the best W. of the W. ever, but great special effects. The story focuses more on the humans than on the monsters, and the scariest part and maybe the best part is its cameo portrayals of how normal men and women behave in desperate times. In addition to a creepy performance by Tim Robbins as, well a creep, there is a brief scene in which an older couple, seeing Tom Cruise's daughter huddled alone behind a tree, stop their mad dash to escape the murderous Martian machines and gather her up to take her with them. When Cruise chases them down to "save" her from the good Samaritans, they stop, apologize profusely and vanish into the crowd. In a second scene, a desperate mob tears the doors off a car, trying to get in because this is the one vehicle that still runs and so might carry them to safety. In a third, a teenager risks his life, helping to drag drowning passengers aboard a departing ferry. These good-guy, bad-guy vignettes are far more touching (and more believable) than the main storyline.
The overall verdict? Go ahead and see it if you like this sort of film, but don't expect too much from it. (7/05)
Don't be fooled. This is NOT a romantic comedy. NOT heartwarming and NOT upbeat.
It is, however, an extraordinary film. It sneaks up on you. It gets to you. It stays with you. Nickolas Cage provides, as always, an absolutely splendid and wholly convincing performance. (The Chick kept having to remind herself, "Yes, that's right, that's who it is. Lost track there for a min.") Naturally, Michael Caine is marvelous. The two kids are perfect, especially the little girl.
So okay . . . got that? Not romantic, not comedy, not heartwarming (well, maybe in a couple of spots), and not upbeat.
Just great, that's all. (11/1/05)
What Lies Beneath
In answer to that question Very Little! Creaky plot, Michelle Pfifer looks like she's dying of anorexia, and Harrison Ford is off his form. Too bad, HF fans! (9/20/00)
The Wedding Crashers
Owen Wilson is always adorable, of course. Vince Vaughn is as darling as he is tall. And there's also the great&moody Christopher Walken, Jane Seymour, a vast array of pretty girls, lavish settings, splendid costumes, great jokes & set pieces . . . and yet the Chick must advise you to keep your cash in your jeans. Don't bother. These charming guys are worthless exploiters from start to finish. Oh, sure, they fall in love. Everybody gets to fall in love. And then they & their "ladies" all go off to crash more weddings, eat more free food, sleep around and con the world. Phooey on them! When I tell you that Christopher Walken plays the single worthwhile person in the entire film, well, that should say it all! (9/05)
Wrestling Earnest Hemingway
Offbeat. Immensely touching. Fascinating. Heartbreaking. Richard Harris does a great job, as he has frequently been known to do in the past. Sandra Bullock and Shirley McLaine, each in a relatively small part, turn in beautiful performances. Robert Duvall is brilliant even for him, and even considering that he is always brilliant. If you have never seen this film, even if your local video stores are closed because it is midnight when you read this . . . consider breaking and entering. Now. Tonight.
The Flick Chick Reviews New Films
More Film Reviews. Click the appropriate letter for films whose titles begin with . . .
A few choice foreign films (subtitles)
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