A Movies

The Alamo (2004)

The AlamoOne Star

Who’s in it

Billy Bob Thorton, Dennis Quaid

Should you see this movie?

No amount of popcorn and smiling coke polar bears could make this movie good. It took me three naps to finally make it all the way through, and even then I wondered why I wasted my time. Plus, I waited until the movie came to the library because I thought it would be bad, knew it would deep down, and even free I felt unsettled about it. Billy Bob is fairly believable as Daniel Boone, but Quaid overacts for a change, and the whole story may be true, but seriously, couldn’t they have taken some liberty to make it a litter more interesting and little more focused. It was like having the story told to me by a four year old. Don’t see this, it truly isn’t worth your time. If you are interested in the history, hit Wikipedia for 10 minutes and save yourself a couple of hours.

A Lot Like Love (2005)

A Lot Like LoveFour Stars

Who’s in it

Ashton Kutcher, Amanda Peet, Taryn Manning, Ali Larter, Kathryn Hahn

What was good

The casual acting by Kutcher and Peet. It feels real, and these are possibly a realistic series of encounters between two people who get caught up in what they think they need more than what they feel.

What sucked

You don’t for one point in time believe Kutcher is what he portrays in the movie, which kind of ruins things because alot of his story revolves
around him getting his “ducks in a row”. Sarah didn’t like the time gaps, where they would be apart for 2-4 years or so at a time and then the story would pick up again. I don’t mind that sort of thing, but it is something to watch out for.

Who should go see this

I don’t have a lot to say about this. It is a love story, two people who get to know each other over many years and realize that if one of them could make a move at the right time that they could be right for each other. If you like love stories and can tolerate Peet and Kutcher, then you make like this. My parents may enjoy it a touch. I do wish that Kutcher wasn’t so serious in this movie, a little more playful without being an idiot because super serious isn’t believable.

American History X (1998)

Rothe Blog Movies American History XFour and a Half Stars

Who’s in it

Edward Norton, Edward Furlong, Elliott Gould, Beverly D’Angelo

What was good

The whole movie is a powerful look into how a simple event and a couple of slanted view points can create hate against a race. A simple example of the power of words, the strength of a leader, and a group of confused young men can create such chaos and fear within one community.

What sucked

Nothing. Norton is supreme in this movie, believable in every ounce, he is this character. The movie does have one particularly violent act that will stick in your mind, and many other bloody encounters, but I don’t think it detracts from the story, whether it is necessary or not. A look into how white supremacists view themselves and those around them, quiet brooding at times, always a feeling of superiority, and calculated madness to dehumanize others who live in the same fear but haven’t had a sequence of events push them over.

Who should go see this

Everyone. When Norton stomps a robber’s life out on the curb corner, that is hard for me to watch. But I would own this movie, and if it wasn’t as violent I would show it to a group of students where applicable. This isn’t a removed story about people brought up in hate, but yet a normal white kid and how the death of his father fuels a nation of skinheads looking for answers, and how to make their lives better. Such a powerful racial message, you have to watch this.

Airheads (1994)

Rothe Blog Movies AirheadsFive Stars

Who’s in it

Adam Sandler, Judd Nelson, Brendan Fraiser, Steve Buscemi, Michael Richards, Chris Farley, Amy Locane

What was good

This is a fun goofy concept, three band guys take a radio station hostage to get their music played. They can’t break through, Fraiser keeps trying to sneak into major radio exec. offices but this time sneaking in leads to some rash thoughts and before they know it they are making demands for football helmets full of cottage cheese. The juvenile reasoning is humorous, and the supporting cast is perfect.

What sucked

The movie isn’t too dated, just the stars of the movie in this movie. I think if anything, this movie doesn’t have the lasting lines that other comedys have, and Fraiser as a lead is funny, but Fraiser has always had problems defining if he was a funny man with heart, a funny hero, or just a complete idiot. Without that strong lead character I think that the weight is equally spread among all of the characters
diluting the whole movie somehow.

Who should go see this

If you like SNL movies, Chris Farley has a smaller part, and this is one of Sandler’s first movies with some of his less polished goofiness that he created on live tv. This is a good Friday night party movie, not a lot of thinking, good humor, and a short movie to boot, if you were in high school in the 90’s, you should find this movie entertaining.

Assault on Precinct 13(2005)

Rothe Blog Assault Precinct 13Four and a Half Stars

I was not prepared for how action packed, and graphic this movie was. But I still loved it.

Surprises at every turn, Ethan Hawke and Lawrence Fishburne head an ensemble cast with John Leguizamo, Gabriel Bryne, Maria Bello, and Drea de Matteo. Ethan Hawke is a cop that had a bad leadership experience, that has caused him to loose faith in himself. But when a bus with one of the most dangerous criminals aboard makes an emergency stop at his precinct on a snowy night, all hell breaks loose and he has to make the decision to be in charge.

Lawrence Fishburne is the dangerous gangsta cop killer, who is dirty with half of the city’s cops and is ready to finger then if brought to trial. So the dirty cops decided it is time to take him out, and everyone else involved.

Great action but graphic, like I mentioned, see this movie if that is your thing. If you don’t handle blood and death, at least this movie is shot primarily at night so you don’t see a good portion of it. Ethan Hawke is great actor, even though he may not have the statue or traditional looks of a leading role actor. So, if you like something a little off kilter in that sense, you may want to see this. But expect the unexpected where no one is untouchable and there is killing with no hesitation.

After the Sunset (2004)

Rothe Blog After SunsetThree and a Half Stars

I liked this movie. It was entertaining. It was probably recycled from a bunch of movies about great thief / cop stories, but who better to play the two antagonizing roles then Woody Harrelson and Pierce Brosnan.

Also starring the gorgeous Salma Hayek, this movie is about Brosnan, who is a huge jewel thief and Harrelson who is an FBI agent. Brosnan steals one of the Napolean diamonds right out from underneath Harrelson’s nose, in what is a great fun action sequence involving Brosnan driving an SUV through metropolitan streets with a remote control, and that furthers a great rivalry of hate and love.

Brosnan escapes with his partner, Hayek, to a remote island where they retire. Until Harrelson tracks them down seven years later. Brosnan finds out about another Napolean diamond on a cruise ship that is stopping at his island for a week and Harrelson is trying to stop him. A ton of funny scenes and great interaction from the always funny Harrelson and Brosnan, in the end after a lot of backstabbing, they both get what they want.

If you like Pierce or Woody, or like to laugh, see this movie. If you get hung up on originality or get offended by lots of skin by beautiful women, then pass. But I think it is always worth it to see the crazy ideas and technology that is involved in some of these jewel heists.

Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004)

Rothe Blog Movies AnchormanTwo Stars

I was glad that I at least tried this movie, but it did make me contemplate whether the movies that I found so hilarious when I was in high school like Happy Gilmore and Tommy Boy were really that funny, or if they were a period in my life.

I hardly laughed at this movie, and this the fact that Woody Allen had something to do with it, maybe that is why the over the top crying scenes and long awkward silences in the audience were really painful. Either way, I still think Wil Ferrell can be funny, but has to still prove that his silly characters can carry a movie the way Adam Sandler, Chris Farley, or way back as far as Eddie Murphy SNL alums could on the big screen.