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Johnny Suede (1991)
7 out of 10
Tom Dicillo, after Living in Oblivion and Box of Moonlight, has proved himself to be one of the best writers and directors in the business. This, his feature film debut as director, is a nice tale which is solid entertainment but not as good as his later films.
Brad Pitt looks a bit too pretty throughout the film (watch Living in Oblivion, the James LeGros character is a parody of Pitt) but there is a good supporting cast, and the film has some very good moments. Definitely worth watching. 7 out of 10
K.Smith lives in a comic book world
After seeing Clerks, I waited for months for the release of Mallrats. After hearing negative feedback, I went to see it with low expectations and came out crying that it was much better than all the critics were ranting. Having seen it for the fifth time, however, I understand why it got such a poor reception: it's a bad movie.
It is entertaining, but Kevin Smith again shows a lack of ability at writing strong female roles: everyone thinks that because he wrote a lesbian role in Chasing Amy he can write good female roles, but Mallrats: everyone of the girls are sluts: Shannen Doherty is with Ben Affleck the day after breaking up with Jason Lee (the only good performance). Joey Lauren Adams is a complete slut as she recalls sexual fantasy after sexual fantasy and Renee Humphrey is also a slut. As a male I am not offended, but I find that it is a little sad.
The conversations all revolve around sex, as if Smith is begging to shock, and man I would love to go to a mall where only super cool trendy people walk around. It is amateur and lacks originality.
Louis & Frank (1998)
Bad, but not that bad
Having seen the extraordinarily bad rating, I felt the need to help boost it up. The fact is that Louis & Frank, although certainly not as good as earlier Rockwell films, is by no means a disgrace.
The film starts off very promising indeed, with some great conflicts between Louis and Frank. It was funny and good energy. However, the film does drag and many of the characters are annoying: Tony Curtis is embarrassing and annoying, and Steve Buscemi probably only did the film as a favour to Rockwell, who provided Buscemi with fantastic roles in Somebody to Love and In The Soup, but here the character is just dumb.
Don't rush out and see this movie, but if it is on tv it is worth watching.
Three Businessmen (1998)
Subtle, intelligent film
The film 'Three Businessmen' is a clever piece of work in which a businessman from England (played well by Alex Cox) and a businessman from America meet in Liverpool and go out for dinner. But each time they take public transport they end up in a different city: Rotterdam, Hong Kong, Tokyo etc. and are quite unaware that they have ever left England, especially the American, whose typical American tourist behaviour is fun for any Europeans to see.
Though the film got received quite poorly in Rotterdam, I put it down to the fact that there were no Dutch subtitles and the dialogue is very important in the film, because little happens, the entertainment comes from listening to the mini-arguments between the American and the Brit.
Original storyline and subtle humour make this an entertaining little film, shot on a minute budget.
Slidin' is really 'Kids' in Austria, a cliched portrait of young Austrian teenagers who do drugs, have sex, dance in discos and walk around looking beautiful. Divided into three parts, each is really less original than the next.
It is not that it is painful to watch, by no means. It is at times quite entertaining, especially the third part which focuses on a bunch of students getting stuck on their way to the disco. But the film offers the viewer little, somehow I had a hard time believing that the teenagers had had such rough lives, considering that they all looked like they came from a perfectly good family. The struggles which they face are minor and outbursts come from nowhere.
More glamorous than 'Kids' which seemed somewhat more raw than this piece. Uninspired filmmaking which seemed to hope controversy would erupt in making it, but it has all been done before, and it is not shocking to watch the kids do what they are doing.
Desert Blue (1998)
Desert Blue is a very simple story of a spoiled Hollywood actress who, along with her dad (the impressive John Heard) gets stuck in a tiny town whose only pride comes from having the 'World's Largest Ice Cream Cone'. Once in the town, they are forced to stay because of the spilling of a mysterious Cola ingredient, and soon enough the spoiled actress falls for Blue.
The films is full of cliches, and the eccentric characters are not original. The plot is standard and the performances just par. Christina Ricci, as in most of her most recent films, plays a bitchy cynic, while all the other characters do little: they have a goal and chase after it.
Very disappointing stuff, unoriginal and a script which was not very sharp, treading over similar ground. John Heard is the best thing in the movie, and he's not in it very often as Morgan J. Freeman instead focuses on the youth.
Corrina, Corrina (1994)
the best live action family film
As a cynical 18 year old, I dismiss most family films as disgraceful: humour which is really silly, stereotyped characters and often just a collaboration of scenes from other silly family films. I started watching Corrina, Corrina as I ate lunch on a Saturday afternoon, it happened to be on television. I ended up watching the entire film, and noticed that my mom was distracted from her work as well.
Whoopi Goldberg is at her best as Corrina, an intelligent black woman in the 1950's who has a college degree but because of her skin colour she has to work as a maid. She enters the life of Molly and Manny Singer, who have lost their mom and wife respectively, and Molly, up to this point traumatised, warms to Corrina, as I'm sure most of the audience did.
The film teaches morals of religion, black-white relations and anti-smoking (though this last moral is sort of lost) but it does not stick them down your throat. It is funny and Jessie Nelson does some quite experimental and beautiful shots, especially the colours.
It fulfills the requirement of overdone touchy scenes but somehow the performances make it much better, and tina marjorino plays a large role in this. Good for the family, but also quite good for a film lover.