Year Director Running Time MPAA Rating Title Comments
2002 Lawrence, Marc 101
Two Weeks Notice Light romantic comedy starring Sandra Bullock and Hugh Grant. It gets off to a bit of a bad start with a string of very bad jokes, but then picks up and after that I had quite a few good laughs. Not up to the caliber of “While Your Were Sleeping” but worth a look if you like the two leads. Also, supposedly Sandra’s role here is closer to being herself than anything she’s ever done; in case you’re interested in that sort of thing.
2002 Spielberg, Steven 140 PG-13 Catch Me If You Can Very good true story about a teenage boy who managed to elude the FBI for several years while he passed millions of dollars worth of forged checks and passed himself off variously as an airline pilot, a doctor or a lawyer. It’s truly amazing how he got away with so much for as long as he did. Starring Leonardo DiCaprio as the con artist and Tom Hanks as the FBI agent tracking him down. Christopher Walken is also good as the boy’s father. Also worth mentioning is a very clever animated opening title sequence.
2002 Taymor, Julie 123 R Frida Entertaining, though slightly drawn-out, drama based on the life of Mexican surrealist painter Frida Kahlo (1907-1954) and her husband Diego Rivera, also an artist as well as a communist. Salma Hayek, who was born in Mexico, plays the title role and also was instrumental in obtaining permission from the President of Mexico to film one of the scenes on the site of the ancient pyramids of Teotihuacan. Rated R mostly for sexual scenes including a lesbian scene.
2002 Eastwood, Clint 110 R Blood Work Very interesting murder investigation story. Clint Eastwood is a retired FBI profiler who has just received a heart transplant. He soon learns that the donor was the victim of an unsolved murder and launches his own investigation on behalf of the victim’s sister. Some strong violence, but not to excess.
2002 Haynes, Todd 107 PG-13 Far From Heaven This is a very well made film though the story may not have the widest appeal. Set in a small New England town in 1957, it shows the collapse of a “perfect” family when the husband (Dennis Quaid) is caught in a gay relationship, and the wife (Julianne Moore) is seen socializing with the black gardener. Good performances and amazing attention to detail in recreating the 1957 setting; even the lighting seems to evoke the period. It addresses issues that a film made in the 50’s never could have explored.
1998 Avalos, Stefan + Lance Weiler 87 NR Last Broadcast, The More of a curiosity than anything else. A low budget (allegedly $900) horror film cleverly made to look like a legitimate documentary. If you’ve seen “The Blair Witch Project” which was released about a year later, you will see how that film seems to have borrowed from this earlier effort. It has the unique distinction of being the first digital movie to be released only as a digital projection rather than first transferring it to actual film.
1991 Zhang, Yimou 125 PG Raise the Red Lantern Chinese: “Da hong deng long gao gao gua.” An interesting look at the curious customs of a secluded wealthy family in China in the 1920’s. Beautiful to look at, though unconventional in that the story plays no favorites amongst the central characters, the four wives of the ‘Master.’ There is a point-of-view character, though, the new ‘Fourth Mistress,’ joining the family at age 19 and bringing with her an “attitude.” Red lanterns are placed at the apartment of the wife who will receive the attentions of the Master that night, and they each conspire against each other for this privilege, resulting in multiple tragedies. A good film, though I thought that ‘Ju Dou,’ by the same director, was more entertaining. Because of the beautiful imagery in this film you will enjoy it more if you can get a good quality print of it, which may not be easy. I recently found a very good “remastered” DVD that is actually a foreign release out of Hong Kong but luckily is a “Region-1” disc (meaning it can be played on American and Canadian DVD players). The distributor’s name on this edition is “ERA” last known to be available from www.hkflix.com. In July, 2007, MGM World Films released a new DVD edition that reportedly is a big improvement over previous American editions but I have not seen that one, though I would recommend looking for that one if you cannot find the ERA version.
2002 Scorsese, Martin 166 R Gangs of New York Very violent dramatization of ethnic warfare in the streets of New York City starting in 1846 and culminating with a grand reenactment of the Civil War Draft Riots of 1863. Leonardo DiCaprio heads the billing and the story is from his point of view but the performance to watch is Daniel Day-Lewis as “The Butcher.” Unfortunately his outstanding performance is surrounded by a movie that is too long. I also felt that the attempt at a romantic subplot with Cameron Diaz fell flat.
2002 Jonze, Spike 115 R Adaptation This film takes a very unusual approach to telling the story from the book on which it is based (“The Orchid Thief” by Susan Orlean). Simply put, the movie is about itself. The central characters are the screenwriter of the film , the author of the book and the ‘thief’ from the book. In the movie, the screenwriter, played by Nicolas Cage, is struggling to write a screenplay based on Orlean’s book (Orlean is played by Meryl Streep). And through flashbacks it tells the true-life story that the book is based on. Then things really get interesting when the screenwriter’s life becomes entangled with that of the author and the thief. And to make things even more interesting, in the movie, the screenwriter has a twin brother, also played by Cage, and to extend the illusion that this is true, the film includes a credit for a nonexistent brother of the real screenwriter. And now when I tell you that the director and writer of this film also created “Being John Malkovich” you won’t be so surprised that this is such a convoluted bit of storytelling. Cage is terrific as the twin brothers. Streep is good but it did not strike me as a memorable role. Rated R for all the usual reasons including a live birth scene. And there was one scene which made a completely unnecessary use of very graphic language.
2002 Weitz, Paul + Chris Weitz 101 PG-13 About A Boy A very good Hugh Grant comedy. He decides the type of woman he wants to meet is a single mother. At first he pretends he is a divorced father of a 2-year-old who conveniently is never around. Then through a friend of one of his dates he becomes a reluctant surrogate father of an actual 12-year old boy whom he allows women to assume is his real son. So with all these false pretenses he naturally gets into trouble with these women and meanwhile slowly realizes this boy has been a good influence on him.
2002 Almodóvar, Pedro 113 R Talk To Her Spanish: “Hable con ella.” Two men become close friends through sharing similar tragedies, but one of them commits a reprehensible crime, forcing the other to make tough choices. Each has recently met women who now lie comatose in the same hospital. The story jumps around in time a lot, revealing dramatically different stories of how each of the two couples met and how the men now deal with their nearly lifeless partners. In an extremely unusual departure from the main story, one of the men is telling his comatose patient about a silent movie he just saw, and to illustrate this the director inserts a very authentic-looking fake silent movie that runs about seven minutes. It is quite a funny diversion but if it wasn’t so exagerated it almost could be considered “X-rated.” It turns out that the little story in the silent movie is very significant to the real movie. Overall this is a pretty good movie but one thing that I thought fell short here was the development of the friendship between the two men, which after all was supposed to be one of the main points.
2001 Apted, Michael 119 R Enigma Very good romantic spy thriller, set in wartime England. The German U-boats have just changed their secret “Enigma” code and the race is on to crack it before a large Allied fleet in the Atlantic comes under attack. Although based on a novel, the historical setting is a real code-breaking operation that was so secret that nobody knew about it until 30 years after the war. A complicated story that you really have to pay attention to but very well done. An interesting bit of trivia: this was co-produced by Mick Jagger.
2002 Payne, Alexander 125 R About Schmidt Jack Nicholson is very good in a role quite different from past performances. There is a lot of humor in his role but it might be overstating it to classify this movie as a pure comedy. He plays a man who, in rapid succession, is faced with retirement, the death of his wife, and the impending marriage of his daughter to a man he can’t stand. You might want to close your eyes when Kathy Bates takes her robe off!!
2002 Marshall, Rob 113 PG-13 Chicago A musical about two women jailed for murders in prohibition-era Chicago. Renée Zellweger has killed her boyfriend after discovering he lied about helping her become a show girl. And Catherine Zeta-Jones is a show girl who has just killed her sister and husband. Both hire the same lawyer, played by Richard Gere. The two women vie for media attention during the trial. Catherine Zeta-Jones reveals a surprising talent for dancing and all three stars do their own singing. Unfortunately I have to say that this is not my type of musical.
2002
101 R Quiet American, The Michael Caine plays a British war correspondent in South Vietnam in 1952 when it was the French fighting the war. And he has a beautiful Vietnamese mistress. A love triangle develops when he befriends an American, played by Brandan Fraser, whose character turns out to be hiding many secrets. I was put off by two main things; first that there were technical flaws that bothered me like a poor sound balance between the dialog track and other sounds and some scenes that appeared to be washed out. And secondly I thought that Fraser was completely wrong for this role.
2002 Lyne, Adrian 124 R Unfaithful Very good suspense thriller from the director of “Fatal Attraction.” Also very erotic, with many graphic sex scenes. Diane Lane gives an extraordinary performance throughout the film. And Richard Gere is also good in a role that is distinctly different from previous roles. There is one scene of violence involving copious amounts of blood. “Unfaithful” is loosely based on a French film, “La Femme Infidèle” (1969) by Claude Chabrol.
2002 Polanski, Roman 149 R Pianist, The Excellent true story of survival during the Nazi occupation of Poland during World War II. Specifically the survival of Jewish pianist Wladyslaw Szpilman. It is, however, difficult to watch at times because of the violent acts of the Nazis toward the Jews. However, if you were able to stomach “Schindler’s List” then you will probably be able to handle this violence.
2003

TV-14-LSV Children of Dune Science fiction. TV Miniseries based on the Frank Herbert novels, “Dune Messiah” and “Children of Dune.” Produced as a sequel to the 2000 miniseries “Dune” which, in turn, was a remake of the 1984 theatrical film. Part-1 of the 2003 miniseries encompasses the “Dune Messiah” story, the shortest of the three, leaving parts 2 and 3 to cover the actual “Children of Dune.” I have read only the “Dune” novel and not the other two so I cannot relate on that level. But the new series was pretty good as TV movies go and, from what I can gather, pretty faithful to the novels.
2003 Segal, Peter 105 PG-13 Anger Management I’m not a big fan of Adam Sandler, but paired up with Jack Nicholson here, the result is a fairly good comedy. As a result of an absurd incident aboard an airliner, Adam’s character is sentenced in court to an anger management program, run by Jack Nicholson. Jack’s other patients are pretty bizarre and so add to the madness. Marisa Tomei plays Adam’s girlfriend but to my great disappointment, did not get very much screen time.
2002 Stone, Charles III 119 PG-13 Drumline This is literally the battle of the bands. Show-style university marching bands in the deep south that is. While it doesn’t provide much of a story, it does include several rousing band competitions, focusing primarily on the “drumline” section. The central character is a freshman at a fictitious university in Georgia. And while he may be the most talented member of the drumline, his rebellious attitude makes him the most difficult student. I can’t speak for how accurately it portrays the life of a band student but I can say it completely ignores the academic side. It’s too bad they cut most of the band numbers short for time since it would have been more fun to see full uncut routines.
2002 Nolan, Christopher 118 R Insomnia There are at least 6 films named ‘Insomnia’ and this is the one starring Al Pacino and Robin Williams. And it is a remake of the 1997 Norwegian version. It’s a pretty good murder mystery thriller set in Alaska, though filmed mostly in British Columbia. You almost forget that Williams is in the film because he doesn’t make an appearance till at least an hour into it. The insomnia is suffered by Pacino’s character during the course of his investigation and it is not helped by the near continuous daylight in the Alaskan summer. Another good feature of this film is actress Hillary Swank.
2002 Allen, Woody 112 PG-13 Hollywood Ending Woody Allen came up with a funny story idea here about a film director who suddenly becomes psychosomatically blind just when he is about to start directing a new film which he hopes will save his career. Unfortunately his portrayal of a blind man is very exaggerated and quickly becomes stupid rather than funny.
2002 Verbinski, Gore 115 PG-13 Ring, The I would classify this as sort of a ghost story thriller. It is a remake of a Japanese film, “Ringu” (1998), which in turn is based on a 1995 Japanese TV movie. Although the premise may sound a bit like your basic teen scream flick, it actually works out to be a pretty decent mystery plot. The idea is that if you watch a certain short video tape that you will die 7 days later. One woman who sees it attempts to research the source of the images on the tape during what may be her last 7 days of life. And just when you think the story has reached a conclusion, you find that there is more to it.
1993 Kaufman, Philip 125 R Rising Sun Sean Connery and Wesley Snipes are an unlikely team of police investigators trying to solve a murder mystery in Los Angeles. A woman has been killed in the board room of a large Japanese firm that is in negotiations to buy an American technology company. The surveillance video that captured the crime has been tampered with and they must try to obtain the original. Connery is very good and Snipes makes a pretty good “odd couple” partner.
2003 Wachowski Brothers, The 138 R Martix Reloaded, The If action and special effects sequences mean more to you than story development, this installment of the Matrix Trilogy will not disappoint you; though I must say that the car chase scene was so long I almost felt exhausted just watching it. If you did not see “The Matrix” (1999) you will be completely in the dark as to what this is all about. This new movie assumes you know the characters and their circumstances. The original film had a good, though complicated, story that was well balanced with the action sequences. I must admit I did not fully comprehend “The Matrix” the first time I saw it, but I’ve seen it a couple more times now from the DVD and have a much greater appreciation for it. And now, by comparison, the new movie is a disappointment. I think that in their effort to make a trilogy out of their saga the directors short-changed the middle episode on story development and made up for it with a lot of “filler” in the form of overlong action sequences. The weak romantic subplot from the first film is continued here and includes the most boring sex scene ever filmed.
2003 Shadyac, Tom 101 PG-13 Bruce Almighty I’ll admit that I’m easily amused, but I haven’t had so many good laughs at a movie since “Amelie.” You may think I’m biased because my name is in the title, but this comedy definitely stands on its own, though that may have been an extra incentive to see it in the first place. If you like Jim Carrey I think you’ll find this is one of his better efforts. The title character, Bruce, is a man who feels God has let him down, and God (Morgan Freeman) responds by transferring his powers to Bruce for a week. There are probably many ways the writers could have handled this premise, but in the allotted time I think they included plenty of good comic material well suited to Carrey’s style. Also starring, as Bruce’s girlfriend, is the lovely Jennifer Aniston (and I might be biased about that part). During the end credits there are some hilarious outtakes.
2002 Steers, Burr 98 R Igby Goes Down This could be classified as “depressing tragedy” or “witty dark comedy.” I saw it more as the latter, though I have to say the characters in this film are definitely not people you would want to know in real life. They’ve got some serious problems, but the actors do a very good job of being the kind of people you just want to slug (and to satisfy the audience’s desires along those lines, Igby gets hit a lot). Igby (Kieran Culkin) is an aimless 17-year old whose mother (Susan Sarandon) is a pill popper and his father (Bill Pullman) loses his mind and is institutionalized. And his older brother is an arrogant “preppy.” The film opens with the two brothers committing a shocking crime and then the story jumps back to Igby’s childhood (where he is portrayed by the actor’s younger brother, Rory Culkin), proceeding ultimately to a revelation of what motivated that opening scene. Surprisingly the legal ramifications of that crime are never addressed. The R rating covers the sex, the drug usage and the excessive use of the F-word, though it is not at all surprising that characters such as these would speak that way.
2002 Sollett, Peter 87 R Raising Victor Vargas This is a pretty good boy-meets-girl comedy set in Manhattan’s lower east side. Victor and his siblings are a poor Latino family being raised by their grandmother. Victor gets help meeting a neighbor girl when he finds that her brother is interested in his sister. But the grandmother smells trouble at every turn. This is a low budget film with nonprofessional actors hired locally. It probably would have been rated PG-13 if it weren’t for the excessive strong language.
2003 Stanton, Andrew 100 G Finding Nemo Very funny Disney cartoon about fish and other creatures of the sea. A little fish gets separated from his father and the adventure begins as the father attempts to find his son. Many of the fish are voiced by well known comedic actors which will be fun for those who recognize the voices. Particularly funny is Ellen DeGeneres as the blue fish with a short-term memory disorder.
2003
110
Italian Job, The This action film may build some interest in the Cooper Mini automobile but not too much else. If it weren’t for the two big chase sequences this heist/revenge story would have been pretty boring. Some high quality talent with Ed Norton and Charlize Theron but I think they needed better writing talent.
2003 Mangold, James 90 R Identity Very good “whodunit” is also part horror film with some good jolts for the old thumper. A very clever variation on the old “10 little Indians” murder mystery plot. Violent and bloody at times, though the most intense violence takes place off-camera. Surprising plot twists keep things interesting and unpredictable. Stars Ray Liotta and John Cusack.
2002 Blitz, Jeffrey 97 G Spellbound This is NOT the Hitchcock movie! This is a wonderful documentary about the national spelling bee. It follows several students from around the country as they practice and participate in local bees and make their way to the national bee. Highly recommended.
2003 Mostow, Jonathan
R Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines Arnold Schwarzenegger makes his third appearance as the robot from the future. Unlike the first two films, this one was not directed by James Cameron, and it shows. This installment of the story definitely has a different feel to it, and not for the better. It certainly has some exciting action sequences, but even there the magic that Cameon was able to put into his films is noticeably absent. Fans of the first two films will probably find this reasonably entertaining but I’m sure most will rate it as the lessor of the three movies. Rated R for violence -- if you saw the first two films you already know what to expect in this department.
2002 Caro, Niki
PG-13 Whale Rider A very good story about the Maori culture in New Zealand. Set in present-day, the elder chief seeks to select a successor from amongst the young boys in the tribe. His grandson would have been the logical choice but he died at birth. There was a surviving twin girl but her gender disqualified her in the eyes of her grandfather. But she doesn’t let that stop her from competing with the boys. This group of Maori believe their revered ancestor arrived in New Zealand on the back of a whale. Shot mostly at the real location where this myth arose. This could have been rated ‘G’ except for a small bit of strong language; hardly noticeable.
2002 Hancock, John Lee 128 G Rookie, The A nice Disney picture that does a fairly accurate job of telling the true story of baseball pitcher Jim Morris. He had a shot as a professional player right out of high school but injured his pitching arm and had to give it up. Later he became a high school baseball coach. As a result of a challenge from his team, he tried out for a professional team again and discovered he could pitch at 98 mph. This got him the job and eventually he became the oldest ‘rookie’ on a major-league team, the Tampa Devil Rays. My only complaint about this movie is its length; it did seem to drag at times. It stars Dennis Quaid as the adult Morris. Baseball fans are certain to like this movie, but it definitely has broader appeal than that.
2003 Lee, Ang
PG-13 Hulk Another comic book character brought to the big screen and another disappointment. There was a reasonably good TV series based on this character that ran from 1978 to 1982. The premise is that a scientist, Dr. Banner, is accidentally exposed to radiation which causes him to turn into a big green monster every time he gets angry. In the TV series they used a body builder painted green to portray the Hulk but in this movie they have used digital animation to produce a much larger creature. The action sequences that arise from Banner’s transformations into the Hulk are pretty entertaining but other than that I thought this film was a mess.
2001 Haas, Philip 94
Lathe of Heaven This Ursula K. Le Guin science fiction novel was previously filmed in 1980 by a public television station and interestingly enough this new version was also produced by a TV studio. Both are now available on DVD. I prefer the 1980 version because I think it does a better job of telling the story. I have to admit that I have not read the novel so I don’t actually know which film is more faithful to the book. This new film looks better because of the more modern filming technology, but because it left out story elements that I was used to in the 1980 film it just didn’t seem complete (this also makes the new film 11 minutes shorter). Not to ignore what the film is about, the main character, George Orr, claims to have dreams that change reality to the extent that only he recognizes the changes and everyone else never knows that things were ever different. It gets interesting when his psychologist starts believing him and becomes a “director” of George’s dreams in order to change the world in his favor.
2000 Petrie, Donald 110 PG-13 Miss Congeniality Very funny “slapstick” comedy starring Sandra Bullock and Michael Caine. Sandy is very good at physical comedy and here she puts that talent to good use. She plays an under-cover FBI agent pretending to be a beauty pageant contestant in order to foil a possible bombing of the event. The makeup department did an excellent job of starting her as a very tomboyish woman you wouldn’t look twice at, and then, via Michael Caine’s character, transforming her into a stunning femme fatale (albeit one not comfortable in heels). There is one small scene I wish had been cut because it is so bad, but I did learn afterwards that both Sandy and the screenwriter also thought it was bad but the studio overruled them so unfortunately it remains (I’m sure you’ll have no trouble spotting it, but it involves a bagel).
2003 Maxwell, Ronald F. 219 PG-13 Gods and Generals Epic Civil War drama by the same director as “Gettysburg” (1993). This part of the intended trilogy covers the early years of the war when Virginia seceded and put Robert E. Lee in charge of fending off the invasion from Washington. Some of the same actors were recruited to reprise their roles from “Gettysburg” and this provides some nice continuity (in reverse of course). Although not as rousing as “Gettysburg” this part of the war is given just as much authenticity while adding a different dimension of the story in the form of a more personal look at the private lives and families of the principal characters. As a result this film is more talkative, with much quoting from literature including the Bible. Along with General Lee, the other main character is “Stonewall” Jackson, and so in that sense, this movie is more weighted to the Confederate side of the story, whereas I think “Gettysburg” was a bit more balanced. So while I’d say “Gettysburg” was better, this one is not as bad as some critics would have you believe. It’s just a different approach to presenting this complex piece of history and the result is actually a pretty good history lesson.
2001 Cluzaud, Jacques + Michel Debats + Jacques Perrin 88 ? G Winged Migration Superb nature film. Although technically a foreign film, the narration of this wonderful documentary is in English. Its foreign title is “Le Peuple migrateur.” Hitchcock has nothing on this film; you’ve never seen so many birds! A large part of the film is devoted to just showing various species of migratory birds in flight. What sets this film apart is the amazing photography, giving you a bird’s point of view, as though you were just one of the other birds in formation. You also get to see many unusual and entertaining social behaviors of various species. The film also makes a visual statement about the various man-made hazards that birds encounter such as polluted water and air and the occasional hunter. Definitely one of the best nature films I’ve ever seen. On the DVD edition there is a “making of” documentary which is just as fascinating as the main feature.
1966 Guillermin, John 153 NR Blue Max, The A very long but only average war movie. George Peppard plays a rookie German pilot in World War I, seeking to earn the prestigous “Blue Max” medal. His obsession with this goal does not sit well with his fellow pilots but the General (James Mason) plays the politics of heroism and makes a public figure out of him. For me, I think one of the problems with this film is that Peppard seemed too American. He thus seemed very out of place in the German military. They did do a pretty good job (for 1966) of filming the aerial maneuvers in the battle sequences.
2002 Washington, Denzel 120 PG-13 Antwone Fisher Denzel Washington directs and stars in this true drama written by the real Antwone Fisher. Denzel plays the Naval base’s psychiatrist who helps a young sailor prone to violent outbursts.
1969 Hathaway, Henry 128 G True Grit A very resourceful teenage girl (Kim Darby) engages the services of a Federal marshal (John Wayne) to track down the man who murdered her father. Wayne created a great character here but the rest of the cast wasn’t all that compelling, notably Glen Campbell but still worth seeing. Trivia for Star Trek fans: there are at least three players here who also appeared in the original Star Trek TV series: Kim Darby, John Fiedler and Jeff Corey.
2002 Cronenberg, David 98 R Spider Ralph Fiennes plays a mental patient who settles into a halfway house and engages in a quietly dramatic, though often confusing, struggle to reconcile his past and present. Fiennes gives an impressive performance almost entirely through facial expression and body language while having almost no spoken lines, and the few he has are mostly unintelligible. There are details and story complications that made it worth seeing a second time, and even then there remained doubt as to what “really” happened. This may be the “longest” 98-minute film ever, so if you crave dialog and action this is not your movie, but I was very much drawn into it, even though I didn’t fully comprehend it the first time.
2003 Scott, Ridley 116 PG-13 Matchstick Men Nicolas Cage is a con man with a lot of personal problems. Things get complicated when his daughter shows up and wants to learn the trade. As with most films of this genre there are the usual plot twists to surprise you. They fooled me, but then I don’t think I was really trying to second-guess the plot. If you like Nicolas Cage you will probably enjoy his quirky character in this film, though as a whole I would rate this as only average.
2003
101
Lost In Translation Excellent comedy starring Bill Murray in one of his best roles ever. The comedy is much more subdued here than most of his films. He plays an American movie star filming commercials in Japan. And while there strikes up a casual relationship with an American woman whose husband is out most of the time on photo assignments.
1948 Hawks, Howard 133 NR Red River A rather slow-paced John Wayne film co-starring Montgomery Clift in one of his earliest roles. But still a cut above most westerns. Wayne’s character is a big departure from the usual.
2001 Link, Caroline 142 R Nowhere In Africa German: “Nirgendwo in Afrika.” One of the best films I’ve seen about Caucasians trying to make a life for themselves in Africa. In 1938 a Jewish family in Germany escapes to Kenya to avoid the Nazis. With great authenticity it is filmed mostly in Kenya. Based on a true story that was published as an autobiographical novel.
2001 Campanella, Juan Jose 125 R Son of the Bride Argentine: “El Hijo dela Novia.” The owner of a restaurant is at risk of losing the family business and his mother is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. But in spite of this adversity this is actually a very good comedic drama with a touching ending. As a footnote, there is a sort of running joke involving unexplained references to a “Dick Watson.” The rather risqué explanation is finally revealed to those who stay through the first 2 minutes of the end credits.
2003 McG 106 PG-13 Charlies Angels: Full Throttle I only saw this because it was an in-flight movie. Don’t waste your time. If you thought the “Charlies Angels” TV series was silly, this is even more so.
2003 Shelton, Ron 116 PG-13 Hollywood Homicide Harrison Ford stars as an older homicide detective working with a new rookie partner as they try to solve a night club murder in Hollywood. It is, however, a cop movie that doesn’t take itself too seriously, as you will quickly catch on, helped by Ford’s low-key sense of humor. Filmed in authentic Hollywood locations, though mostly ones not normally seen by tourists. By the end of the film I was definitely enjoying it, but I must say that I had my doubts during the first 45 minutes. It just seemed like it wasn’t going anywhere, but when things finally got interesting it was very good. In retrospect, that first section provided a lot of setup for the final dramatic hour and did seem to work better on the second viewing. Although rated PG-13, they do push the limits of that level (the director admitted he really wanted it to be R).