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Jaws quick movie review

What can one say about Jaws?  It’s the first summer blockbuster.  It basically created the film industry as we know it today and is a legend in its own right.  It’s spawned countless parodies, references and even theme park rides, not to mention three lackluster sequels.  All of this pontificating is me saying it’s a great movie.  Read the rest of this entry

Raiders of the Lost Ark – Indiana Jones (movie review)

Raiders of the Lost Ark seems to be the favorite Indiana Jones movie of anyone who’s in their forties or older – if you’re in your thirties, you tend to gravitate toward The Last Crusade, but such is life. I mention this because I myself am a Last Crusade man and therefore don’t worship at the altar of the Lost Ark. That’s not to say I don’t like the movie, but I thought it was worth mentioning that this one isn’t my favorite so you’ll understand where I’m coming from.

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5 things to love/hate about Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (movie review)

I go back on forth on Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom – lots of people love it, lots of people hate it. I used to fall solidly in the latter category, but now, the more times I watch it, the more I get split on the subject. Therefore, I’m prepared to speak on both the good and the bad: here are five things to love and five things to hate about Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.
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Dial M for Murder (a "Better Know Your Hitchcock!" movie review)

I briefly referenced Dial M for Murder when I talked about the remake of this film, A Perfect Murder, way back when. But now, it’s time for the real thing! Today on Better Know Your Hitchcock, take out your phone and hit the 6 button until your victim meets their grisly end! Or keep reading… either way. Read the rest of this entry

5 Things I Loved About Star Wars Episode I The Phantom Menace

star-wars-episode-one-the-phantom-menace-3d-movie-poster**Don’t worry – the things I hate are coming up!

I caught Star Wars Episode I The Phantom Menace in all it’s 3D glory (or lack there of – the opening crawl and subtitles were certainly in 3D), and I have to say that every time I’ve watched this movie since it came out in 1999, it’s always better than I remembered.  It’s the sort of movie that’s tailor made for the movie theater experience because it’s so heavy on visuals, sounds and short on…  other things that make a movie great.  Anyway, here are 5 things I loved about Episode I.

5.  Liam Neeson is in this movie?!?

I just like watching Liam Neeson  do his thing – if he came  out on stage and blew his nose, I’d clap.  He doesn’t have anything especially interesting to say, but that man can handle a lightsaber – as opposed to Samuel L. Jackson in Attack of the Clones, who looks like he’s about to fall flat on his face.

4.  Computer Graphics

The digital effects that appear in Episode I might be par for the course these days, but back in ’99, this movie was visual eye candy the likes of which had never been before, and it was in every single scene.  Space ships, droids, Jar Jar (p-usa!), Watto and so on – it’ just kept going!  Even that quick shot of Obi-Wan, Qui-Gon and Jar Jar swimming to the underwater city was mind blowing back then.

3.  Lightsabers! (And Other Stuff That Goes BOOM!)

Speaking of Liam Neeson handling his lightsaber (err…  that didn’t come out right), there sure is plenty of lightsaber action in the movie, so much that you might say the lightsaber is overexposed in Episode I, but there it is.  Also, stuff just blows up all the time in this movie (mostly on Naboo – not much blows up on Coruscant or Tatooine), and at it’s core, Episode I is an action movie, so it’s all good.

2.  The Pod Race

The Pod Race scene is the only part of the film that makes it clear that this is an independent movie – a studio movie would never have a 10 minute racing scene in it – well, unless the movie was about racing.  This and the ending lightsaber duels are the most memorable scenes of the movie.

1.  The Music

John Williams really tears it up in Episode I.  The score just never stops rocking – beyond the first two laps of the pod race, almost every single moment of the movie is coated with music, and it’s quality stuff – not the leftovers Williams served up in Attack of the Clones and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.  When bad dialogue or incoherent storytelling rears it’s head in Episode I, you have nothing to fear:  John Williams is there to tell you what this scene is supposed to make you feel.

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