Well, it’s that time of the year when the Cineworld Dublin puts on the bulk of its Asian cinema releases. I caught Stephen Chow’s The Mermaid earlier but League of Gods flew by my site surfing and I decided to give it a whirl. CG, Jet Li, Tony Leung being evil, Fan Bingbing being eviler and a race to see how many special effects you can have on screen in a Chinese film. Trailer and review after the break.
Chinese remakes of American films, especially romantic comedies, have not had a great trail run. Only You with Tang Wei and Liao Fan disappeared without a trace and even the great Andy Lou and Gong Li couldn’t stop What Women Want from just existing. We’re now in the third round and the champ’s not looking so good. So can the golden girl of Chinese cinema, Shu Qi, save the remake of 1997’s My Best Friend’s Wedding?
I’m not sure what the point of the Swinging Cheerleaders is but I’m pretty sure it’s got something to do with the main character Kate learning to like being in an oppressive patriarchy and her new football jock beau, Buck, learning to not treat women like dirt. Oh, and there’s cheerleading going on in between. Review and trailer after the break.
If nothing else, Return of the Killer Tomatoes is proof that you don’t need to see an obscure film in order to get sucked into its sequel. Attack of the Killer Tomatoes was a weird, funny film but when its first sequel came out in 1988, few people would have remembered instantly the first movie. And why would you when you have George Clooney as a sidekick, the gorgeous Karen Mistal as Tara and John Astin hamming it up as the evil and insane Prof. Gangreen? Trailer and review after the break.
It’s painfully heartwarming to watch movies set in your home country. While the US, UK and Europe have a fine tradition of rolling their eyes at their fellow countrymen and women on screen, here in Ireland we are woefully bereft for truly Irish stories. John Carney’s Sing Street takes a different path than our normal output and yet stays true to its roots. Trailer and review after the break
From the opening shot of Zootopia with its school recital, the film is firmly in hero Judy Hoops corner. She is an anomaly, wanting to be a police officer, because she’s a bunny and bunnies work on farms or at the very least, work quaint office jobs. So when she leaves Bunnyburrow for the big city, everything in her past tells her she’s making a mistake. But the minute she plays “Try Everything” by Shakira (as the character Gazelle) in her headphones and sees the tall spires of Zootopia, Judy and we are in for a different kind of Disney adventure.
Joe Dante is one of the best directors you’ve never heard of but have seen his films. I don’t mean he’s not famous but his work is always so good that we expect it of him and as such don’t give him as much praise as he deserves. Near the end of his killer run in the 80’s, he did a film for Universal called Matinee. Starring John Goodman, it’s one of Dante’s forgotten classics and a fitting homage to the monster movies of the director’s childhood. Trailer and more after the cut.
TerrorVision is not a good movie. Good movies have decent acting, a noteworthy script or a competent direction. Qualities TerrorVision does not possess. Despite all this, it is one of the most sinful of guilty pleasures and you should thank the film gods that it exists. Quite how it all works, well, we’ll get into that now.
It’s a new year and here at the Capricorn Theater, I’m looking forward to the time ahead and I’m writing my first (future) year in cinema. Both what I’m looking forward to seeing in cinemas and what I’ll have on the site from home video releases. For the last year, I’ve been busier than ever writing on my site. Over thirty reviews and posts which is more than what I had posted in the previous six years or so before that. This might be worthy of a pat on the back, I’d like to do better. While this will read in parts like a wish list, I would stress that some of the cinema releases may not be released here in Ireland so they might end up as video reviews. So here’s what this year holds in store for the site.
It had to happen at some time, I suppose. PIXAR, that eponymous animation studio and makers of such timeless stories like Toy Story, Monsters Inc. and Finding Nemo, had to have a dud. But for most studios, a dud would be something that failed to fly with audiences and therefore didn’t take a lot to the bank. A PIXAR dud, what does that look like? When your output is such that people expect your films to be the film equivalent of the Sermon on the Mount, releasing something less than that makes viewers scratch their heads. The Good Dinosaur comes at a time when PIXAR is relying more on its franchises than original ideas so I was curious to see if it keeps the flame at the studio alive or snuffs itself out.