Monday, April 12, 2004


THE GIRL NEXT DOOR - This movie leaves very little for me to talk about. If you've seen "Risky Business," then this is just a much worse version of it; they even do a variation on the score in a couple of scenes. If you haven't seen "Risky Business," then you might like this better than I did. I did think the movie picked up a little bit when Timothy Olymphant entered the preceedings; up until that point, I was just flat out bored. But after awhile, his character wears a llittle thin on me, and like Chris pointed out in his review, it's basically a variation on his character from "Go." Elisha Cuthbert is fine in the role of the woman who will never exist in real life, and she's really hot, which doesn't hurt. And while I saw the video at the end coming a mile away, it was fairly ingenius. There's a good movie that could've been made here, and there are a few laugh out loud moments, but overall I found it to be a retread of better movies before it, and most of the time it was just a mess.

Star Rating: *1/2


CAPRICORN ONE (1978) - AMC, yesterday, did a marathon of their favorite seventies films, or at least ones they didn't have to pay too much to show. I mean, how you have a seventies film marathon without "The Godfather I and II," or say "Star Wars," "Annie Hall," "Taxi Driver," etc., I just don't know. But this movie came on when I had little to do, and I had barely even heard of it, so I thought I would give it a chance. I think in the post "Star Wars" craze this science fiction parable got lost, and that's too bad, because it's really quite good. James Brolin, O.J. Simpson, and Sam Waterston (a crazy ass trio if you ask me) star as three astronauts about to make the first manned mission to Mars. When a few people in NASA learn that their life support system is too cheaply made to work for the entire trip, they make an odd decision. Instead of canceling the mission due to a screw-up, and in effect kill whatever support the President and Congress has been giving them, they pull out the astronauts at the last minute oh so secretly and send the shuttle up unmanned. The crazy trio find out that they get to spend the next seven months in seclusion and occasionally appear on a constructed soundstage so they appear to be in the shuttle or on Mars. However, when the shuttle is coming back, the heat shield gives out and disengrates the vessel, which of course means they now have to kill the astronauts so no one finds out. The film is very tightly paced and all of the actors are good. The cast also includes good turns by Elliot Gould, as a Woodward and Bernstein style reporter, and Telly Savalas, as an ace crop duster pilot. The film's only weakness is that the last half of the film ends up becoming a pretty standard on the lam thriller, but even in that they find some ingenius ways to make it fun; the cropduster outrunning the helicopters is one of the best chase sequences I've ever seen. This would definately fall on my list of underlooked gems, and I thought I would throw it out there, because you guys should definately check it out. And the funniest thing about this film is that it is directed by Peter Hyams. That's right, even Hyams had a good one in him.


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