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Movie Reviews

Ocean's Thirteen (2007)

Movie Review: Ocean's Thirteen, 7 June 2007

Author: andydreamseeker from Singapore

So they're back, for a third time, after Ocean's Eleven in 2001 and Ocean's Twelve in 2004. First they took out three of Terry Benedict's (Andy Garcia) Las Vegas casinos at one go with a smart and clever plan in Eleven, then they had to pay it all back with interest to Benedict in Twelve by staging a different theft, now in Thirteen the team of eleven are back to casino stealing with a little help from again, Benedict.

The unlucky guy is Willy Banks (Al Pacino) who owns a series of highly rated "5 Diamonds" hotels. The team is not in for the money this round but for revenge because Banks had done the disfavour of first knocking Reuben Tishkoff (Elliott Gould), one of the Eleven, from a hotel deal causing the man a heart-attack and a sudden lost in zest for life. You could say old Willy Banks had it coming for him because his ego was too big for himself. He had without any regards dismissed the Eleven's attempt for him to reinstate Reuben's share of the hotel.

As it reads, "What are the odds of getting even? 13 to 1." It's time to place your bet.

Good guys versus bad guys. I cannot really call thieves good guys can I? How about nice guys then? These guys are nice. They have a sentimental heart. They watch Oprah. These guys are nice. They have a heart of gold. They will do anything for a friend. And these guys are cool, handsome and funny too.

Danny Ocean (George Clooney), Rusty Ryan (Brad Pitt), Linus Caldwell (Matt Damon), Frank Catton (Bernie Mac), Virgil Malloy (Casey Affleck), Turk Malloy (Scott Caan), Saul Bloom (Carl Reiner), Basher Tarr (Don Cheadle), "The Amazing" Yen (Shaobo Qin), Livingston Dell (Eddie Jemison) and Reuben Tishkoff (Elliott Gould) make up the Eleven. Strong cast and strong performance is to describe the ensemble.

Let me re-familiarize you to the team. Danny and Rusty are the mastermind and deputy. Linus is the rookie turned master thief. Frank is the professional dealer. Virgil and Turk are brothers who are experts in everything (they kind of do everything and run everywhere). Saul is the old and characteristic actor con-artiste. Basher is the demolition and machinery expert. "The Amazing" Yen is the well… the amazing Yen who is skilled in acrobatic. Livingston is the guru in surveillance and an electronic geek. And of course lastly we have Reuben who is the old man with the money and Danny's mentor.

No worries if you can't remember their roles. You can't be blamed for that. There are after all eleven of them. Just remember them as master of disguises. Lots of that will appear in the film.

What make a film like Ocean's Thirteen worth watching is watching all the characters. It is fun to see all of them coming together in their own way to give the story its life. The acting is in one word, superb. And the actor who plays the bad guy, Willy Banks, Al Pacino is great. The facial expression whenever the veteran actor appears on screen is beyond words. Those eyes and that look, brilliant. Banks right hand man, or woman, and the only mentionable actress in Ocean's Thirteen is Abigail Sponder (Ellen Barkin), and she's foxy.

The story is not that complicated and I can't spoil it by telling. It is basically the eleven taking revenge on Banks with a little help from Benedict. There'll be the usual witty dialogues, the underlying funny relationship among the team members and of course the all-important ploy of how to breach into ego Willy's hotel casino on its opening night. For a film of such fashion, the most interesting part will always be how smart the plan to steal is being done. In Ocean's Thirteen it is not bad and quite exaggerated. For the audience I advise taking the consideration of logic out of the equation and just enjoy all the action on screen as they are. There is no need to be too hard or too smart about it. The main point to this film is to enjoy the humour.

The chill-out, atmospheric and ambient music by composer David Holmes is one of the factors that give this movie series its slick aesthetics. Ocean's Thirteen bettered its last effort of Twelve though not quite as clever, smart and interesting as Eleven. A first tough act was always hard to follow but director Steven Soderbergh gave this one a decent account.

It is easier to enjoy the movie than to dislike it. I like the small part about the hotel reviewer and the jackpot and felt it was a nice touch. If I were to put the film more critically though, I would say that it is not as smooth and the flavour not as strong. Sounds like I'm describing an ice-cream? It is like ice-cream with all the actors and actress in this one. Now who doesn't like ice-cream right?

Any flavour will do as long as it's sweet, cool and topped with some crunch.


Knocked Up (2006)

A simple story is made into a very entertaining comedy, 15 April 2007

Author: Jeff Beachnau ( from Omena, Michigan

Ben Stone (Seth Rogen) meets Alison Scott (Katherine Heigl) at a bar, they get drunk and have a little fun afterward, then they part ways. That is, until a few weeks later, Alison discovers she's pregnant and Ben is the father. This simple story makes up the hilarious film Knocked Up. I really enjoyed this, it has a lot of great laughs and it also has a lot of heart spread throughout.

Seth Rogen does an excellent job, I'm glad he's been given the chance to be the lead in such a big film. And Katherine Heigl is equally entertaining. The two of them are so great together, they're just so much fun to watch on screen. The supporting actors are also wonderful. Leslie Mann and Paul Rudd are perfect together. And I think Kristen Wiig steals the show with her small yet hysterical role as one of the workers at E!.

When people go to see this they'll want to compare it with 40 Year Old Virgin. Though I'm not a big fan of comparing movies to other movies, I guess I'll have to go through with it. For me, 40 Year Old Virgin is a funnier movie, but Knocked Up is a better written film and it has more heart to it. Both films based their story on a simple premise (a nerdy 40 year old hasn't had sex, a guy has a one night stand and gets the woman pregnant), but it seems like 40 Year Old Virgin used its idea to just get laughs. Knocked Up, on the other hand, uses its set up and continues the story throughout the film, developing its characters.

So, Knocked Up is a very enjoyable film, it has some big laughs (I particularly love the side story with the bearded roommate) but its also very sweet at times. I'm sure people will love it. See the movie and you'll get more than just laughs.


Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End (2007)

Despite its many flaws, movie still left me hungry for more, 24 May 2007
Author: Boba_Fett1138 from Groningen, The Netherlands

The Pirates of the Caribbean-movie serials is probably one I'll never grow tired off. The characters are fun and great, always adventurous and spectacular to watch.

It's really too bad that this time they felt the need to make things even bigger, more complex and conclusive than the previous two movies. Really not needed. In my opinion the first movie "Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl" is still the best because of the reason that it's simple, fun and choices to be purely entertaining. They already went wrong with this approach during the second movie; "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest", when they put in more new characters and different hard to follow plot lines. "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End" goes on in the same trend as the previous movie. There are more new characters and as far as the new many plot-lines are concerned...well let me just say that after a while I just gave up trying to understand the movie and just let the movie take me away with its visuals, humor and other entertaining elements. And this movie regardless should really be able to take you away on a roller-coaster-ride of pure entertainment.

No doubt in my mind that this movie could had become the best one out of the series. It had all the potential and budget for that, now if they had only cut down about halve of the script...Most of the plot-lines seem redundant and are actually far from believable because they contradict from what happened in the first two movies. The many betrayals among characters and side-picking became really confusing after a while, till it reached a point when you just didn't knew who was fighting for what. But like I said before, after a while you just stop caring about it and simply enjoy the movie for what it brings you. It all is also the reason why the movie is now nearly 3 hours long. Now the movie is not as good and entertaining as the first but maybe just slightly better than the second one, because of the large scale of this movie.

The movie is definitely big. There is no lack of action as some people claim there is. There is just as much action as there is in the first two movies, only difference this time is that the movie is nearly 3 hours long and therefor the movie also has some more talking-sequences and slower moments in it.

The movie is also big with its musical score by Hans Zimmer and he actually succeeded in composing a new great theme for the movie. In its action moments the movie gets definitely uplifted by its musical score.

The action sequences are definitely well constructed and at times pure eye candy. So are the special effects, although I feel that the second movie was still better on that. It seems like they tried to overdo things this time and I'm mainly talking about the end battle, when it comes down to its special effects, by putting in some complex shots. No matter how good CGI is these days, you still see that it's CGI.

Most roles get extended in this movie. Marty, Tia Dalma and even Jack the monkey and Cotton's parrot. But of course the movie still remains the Jack Sparrow-show. Really one of the best characters in recent years, all thanks to Johnny Depp, who provide the movie with its biggest laughs and most hilarious absurd moments. He still plays the character as good and fresh as he did for the first time 4 years ago. You can't just ever grow tired of Jack Sparrow. I was also very pleased to see Geoffrey Rush back as Barbossa. His role was bigger which allowed Geoffrey Rush to shine even more. Bill Nighy was also as good as always as Davy Jones. Orlando Bloom's and Keira Knightley's acting also has really improved over the years. I was actually surprised to see how much of the movie Keira Knightley carries this time and how well she does this. Even in the sequences with Geoffrey Rush she does. She also gets to do more interesting in the movie when it comes done to action. In a way she has taken over the Will (Orlando Bloom) role in this movie this time and Will himself gets pushed more to the background this time compared to the first two movies, which really shouldn't bother most people, unless you're a teenage-girl of course. She handles both the action- and comical sequences really well. And even Keith Richards shows up in an already classic cameo as Jack's father. But some role also got narrowed down to my regret, such as Jonathan Pryce's and Jack Davenport's and lets not forget the Kraken.

Still, I really wouldn't mind seeing more Pirates of the Caribbean movies in the future, if needed with new actors and characters, as long as Johnny Depp stays as Jack Sparrow. The serials still have more than enough potential and haven't dried up yet.

Surf's Up (2007)

"...and you're sittin' on top of the world...", 8 June 2007

Author: Cel_Stacker from United States

Cody Maverick(Shia LeBouf), a rock-hopper penguin and native of Shiverpool, Antarctica, truly lives up to his surname, unlike his highly domestic mother and brother. He seems quite talented as far as finding his own way--he surfs when others fish, surfs when others sit on eggs, he surfs because that's who he is. The legend of Big Z, the emperor penguin who changed surfing forever, helped to make Maverick a maverick. So when neurotic event liaison bird Mikey Abromowitz (Mario Cantone) appears with a chance to compete in the annual "Big Z Memorial" competition, Cody literally jumps into the chance. Along the way, he meets characters such as Joe (Jon Heder, well-cast once again), a surfing chicken from Michigan, and Lani Aliikai (Zooey Deschanel), a lifeguard penguin who also knows a thing or two about Big Z. Like most other heroes of animated film, Cody learns something about what really matters, but don't let that put you off. This is some true summer fun, kept low-key, which, hopefully, will make this the sleeper hit of summer. Everyone is nicely cast, and the characters are easy to care about (that's saying a lot for modern cinema right there). The film looks wonderful as well--nice character design almost gets dwarfed by the environments, as the folks at Sony Animation show that they have successfully taught computers the difference between freezing, harsh Antarctic Ocean and beautiful, blue, tropical ocean. Truly stunning.

I feel I should also mention the soundtrack; no Beach Boys, but still appropriate. If you've been waiting to hear Incubus, Green Day, or Lauryn Hill in more film soundtracks, now's your chance. The mockumentary approach makes it even more engaging while amping the laughs. Christopher Guest would be proud. All in all, if you're looking for a break from all the holler and hoopla that summer movies bring, and as Big Z says, you're ready to just have some fun, catch a wave...

"The film's tubular visuals and sun-struck philosophizing celebrate the sport while spoofing its disciples, mixing B-grade potty humor and totally-like-fried-chicken gags with faux interviews a la Christopher Guest."


Shrek the Third (2007)

Not Enough to be at level of first 2!, 19 May 2007

Author: 3xHCCH from Quezon City, Philippines

The movie did not really hold the attention of my two younger kids. Even for me, the funny experience of watching both Shrek 1 and 2 was not really very evident with this installment. I remember in Shrek 2, I was laughing out loud with each passing pop culture reference and innuendo being bantered around. However, that was not so here.

I was not too amused with the Disney princesses characters. Shrek's "baby nightmare scene" was well-executed. Justin Timberlake did well in voicing his "grovelling at Merlin's feet" scene. Overall, this movie was not that bad, but it needed to be much better to be worthy to stand on the same level as the first two Shrek films.


Hostel: Part II (2007)

Truly a let down., 8 June 2007

Author: moviedoors from United States

Oh, Eli. What happened? Cabin Fever was a fun horror flick and the first Hostel had its moments, but this? My excitement over a Roth helmed Cell has just dropped dramatically.

Opening where the first film left off, things get off to a bad start as we meet back up with Paxton, with Jay Hernandez phoning in a curiously wooden performance. The first "scares" are very poorly handled and obvious.

After the pointless prologue, we meet our new gender swapped protagonists. Bijou Phillips's is the obnoxious, one-dimensional slut who just wants to sleep with Viktor Krum. Heather Matarazzo's Lorna should have been a good character. Matarazzo is a talented actress, but here she hams it up too much and Roth piles on the "she's an introverted nerd!" touches far too heavily. She's sorta the Josh of Hostel II, only Lorna is a cartoon where as Josh actually seemed like a guy you could meet in a college algebra class. Lauren Graham turns in a pretty good performance and Beth is the only one of these females who actually feels somewhat like a real person.

The new twist on the formula lies in Roger Bart and Richard Burgi's prospective killers. Here's where Roth could have gotten really dark and interesting. Everyone who saw the first Hostetl remembers Rick Hoffman's whacked out, creepy performance as the American Client. Bart and Burgi's characters could have been used to expand on that creepiness as well as bring in some genuine interest in Bart's character's reluctance, amping up the suspense. But no! Instead these characters are shallow, barely explored personalities and Roth uses them for some cheap plot contrivances in the third act.

For a horror flick, the movie has surprisingly little scares. Scratch that, it has no scares. There was not a moment in this movie where I didn't see the jumps coming and there is little in the way of suspense. The first Hostel had some genuinely suspenseful moments and Cabin Fever even had a few "don't do that!" moments. This film has gruesome moments for sure (that this movie got an R rating is the final nail in the coffin for the MPAA's credibility. If Shakespeare in Love and Hostel II share the same rating, something is seriously wrong). The first kill is undeniably effective in being unnerving, but it lacks suspense, which is the secret when a film is toeing the line of bad taste. This kill just felt bad. It was there solely to make the audience feel horrible. Sorry, but that's not why I go to horror films.

Interestingly, the rest of the gruesomeness that ensues is much different in tone. Much of the third act has an almost slapstick vibe, but Roth lacks the grace and timing of splatstick alumni like Sam Raimi and Peter Jackson to truly pull it off. There is also a completely superfluous scene involving a man with a gun and some children that literally served no purpose. Roth was trying so hard to be shocking in that scene that it had the opposite affect on me: I just stared blankly at the screen. I couldn't care less about this completely pointless detour featuring Roth going "look! Aren't I shocking!"

One last complaint and boy is it a big one: Nathan Barr's score. This movie had one of the worst scores I've heard in years. Barr's music sounds like something someone would write if they were making fun of all the clichés of the horror score. That worked for the campy tone of Cabin Fever, but it completely destroys any opportunity for suspense in this film.

I know Eli Roth has a really good film in him. After Hostel II, I fear the wait for that movie will be longer than I was expecting. I hope he's finally scratched that itch for paying homage to his favorite horror flicks and his shock for shock's sake fetish. If that makes its way into his adaption of Stephen King's Cell, we'll have lost a great story ripe for screen translation to a promising young filmmaker whose head got too big too fast.

Mr. Brooks (2007)

Brilliant suspense and tension...Mr. Brooks really keeps you thinking, 31 May 2007

Author: spydamang from United States

'Mr. Brooks', 2007's first true psychological thriller, features an all star cast with Kevin Costner, Demi Moore, Dane Cook, and William Hurt. With a thriller like this, and 2 actors (Cook and Costner) who are playing extremely different roles, the film could have failed. It doesn't at all. It is an extremely clever and intelligent film that is a great ride from start to finish.

Earl Brooks (Oscar Winner Kevin Costner) is Portland's man of the year. He has it all, a beautiful wife, a wonderful company, an awesome home, and a daughter (Danielle Panabaker) in college. But Mr. Brooks also has a secret. A secret addiction. He loves killing, mostly because of the maniacal representation of his temptations and desires: Marshall (Oscar Winner William Hurt). After one last killing, Mr. Brooks is ready to quit, but is quickly blackmailed back into killing by the young photographer known simply as Mr. Smith (Dane Cook). Smith just wants to tag along for the ride to feel the rush of killing. But this murderous trio of Brooks/Marshall/Smith must be careful, as tough-as-nails detective Tracy Atwood (Demi Moore) is on their trail.

I know my description of the plot is thorough, but it doesn't spoil anything, as all this is introduced within 10 to 15 minutes of the opening. I give director Bruce Evans a lot of credit for moving the film along quickly, because most of it is the self-inflection conversations of Mr. Brooks and Marshall. The acting is very well done, and with a cast like this, you should expect it. Costner has been everyone's hero the past 2 decades, but Costner totally breaks the mold with a daring and riveting performance as the conflicted, murderous, yet loving Mr. Brooks. His performance really allows the audience to root for him, even though he's a vicious killer. Costner effectively displays internal conflicts between the good side of him, and the dark side. William Hurt is equally haunting as Marshall, the figment of Brooks' imagination. No stranger to villainous characters (there is no true villain, but Costner, Cook, and Hurt's characters are all bad men), Hurt will grab the audience's attention with his smooth and liquid delivery and cruel responses to Mr. Brooks's regrets. Demi Moore delivers in a role that is a type of character rarely seen in movies anymore. Moore gives us a very flawed, yet strong woman who is the only truly good and moral character in the entire movie. Her character has a lot going on in her life, and it is definitely conveyed in her impatience and quick temper, but we always know why she is how she is. Lastly, and the biggest surprise of the entire film, Dane Cook steals the show in one of the better performances of recent memory. Cook goes tit for tat with Costner in every scene they share, providing some pretty intense moments between the pair. Being the comedian he is, Cook will get a couple of laughs, but this role is completely serious. Cook looks like he had a lot of fun doing this, as he gives us a very layered Mr. Smith who is very disturbed, but at the same time, we know he's a fragile guy who is just a pawn in Mr. Brooks' master plan. Cook will blow you away with his range, and he does a great job displaying his character arc. Mr. Smith starts off as a sarcastic and overconfident guy who is looking to toy with a killer. By the end of the film, Smith changes radically into a completely different person. Way to go Dane.

Bruce Evans does a great job at the helm of the film, providing a fast paced psychological thriller helped out by clever dialog, and one of the most intelligent characters portrayed on film since Hannibal Lecter in Mr. Brooks. It's almost unreal how smart and clever Costner's character is. Another thing I liked was the symmetry between Costner and Hurt. The actors carry a lot of the same mannerisms into their characters, and with the help of Evans, it looks great. There are times where they will do the same movement at the exact same time. Mr. Brooks is a first rate thriller that any fan of the genre should enjoy. The plot has its twists and turns before the grand finale, which reminds the viewer that...Mr. Brooks always has a plan...


Spider-Man 3 (2007)

Spider-Man 3 is adequate, but adequate just isn't enough., 5 May 2007

Author: thecowardlylorin from United States

My feelings after watching the third film are somewhere in the neighborhood of satisfied, but that feeling is fairly disappointing. Satisfied more or less means adequate and to follow a sequel that I consider excellent with a film that's only adequate is a certainly a step down. Positively, Spider-Man 3 does reasonably well at maintaining a feeling similar to that of the first two films. I never felt like I wasn't seeing the same world or characters and that's important to me. Continuity in tone really helps hold a series together. The Matrix Reloaded never felt to me like I was witnessing the continuation of the story and world presented in the first installment. The scenery and characters felt like weak and dull recreations and that really bugged me. The New-York of Spider-Man 3 is about the same as before, as is Peter's apartment, The Daily Bugle offices, etc. Peter, Harry, Mary Jane, Aunt May, etc. also carry over well and it's easy to jump back into their lives. Where it doesn't feel like its predecessors is in its pacing and scope. The film tries to tell a lot of story for one film, much more than either the previous installments. This makes it messy. If you took Spider-Man 1 and 2's stories, wove them together and compressed them into one 2 hour film, you'd have a mess pretty similar to Spider-Man 3. A lot of this has to do with poor exposition and the decision to include three villains. In good exposition, events lead to other events and it all seems to flow naturally. Some films end up feeling like a story wasn't really even written, but instead a series of well-crafted scenes that don't necessarily fit well together. A bunch of smaller scenes are then written to connect those scenes. These scenes can feel very forced because they often rely heavily on coincidence. The Matrix Reloaded is full of these contrived scenes and so is Spider-Man 3. They're frustrating because they act like speed bumps where the plot suddenly feels awkward and my enjoyment of the film drops. One scene sticks out particularly in Spider-Man 3 as too awkward. Venom, one of the super-villains, is swinging through alleyways when he is ambushed by the Sandman, another villain. Venom proposes they team to get Spider-Man together, Sandman agrees, end scene. This scene is needed to set up the final, huge battle of the film but just seems poorly worked in. For one it's very short, and two the characters don't know each other and have completely different motives for being villains. That the two would decide that quickly to become partners after coincidentally running into each other is just sloppy to watch.

Despite how it seems, I didn't hate the film. I was just disappointed in its flow as a narrative and thought it aimed much higher than it should have in terms of what to include plot wise. Regardless though, many scenes were very enjoyable to watch and I don't just mean action scenes. The Daily Bugle scenes, as always, were great and funny. The addition of Topher Grace as Peter's photographer rival, Eddie Brock, was great casting. His line delivery works perfectly with his character's sleazy personality and his scenes with Peter are some of the best. The character Harry Osborne returns and becomes one of the film's three villains: a new Green Goblin that takes over where the Goblin of the first film left off. Harry and Peter's relationship is probably the most interesting part of the story. Their struggle between being friends and enemies makes for some tense moments. One of my favorite scenes in the film is a verbal confrontation in a diner between Peter and Harry. Playing off Peter's presumption that he and Harry are back on good terms, Harry orchestrates a bit of nasty drama that sticks a knife in Pete's love life. He has Peter meet him in a diner just to drive the knife in a little further. As Pete storms out, Harry is awash in sadistic joy with himself before making a fast and creepy exit. Harry is really the best handled villain of the film. Not only as the Green Goblin Jr. fighting Spider-Man in the sky much the way his father did, but as Harry, Peter's estranged friend, using their friendship as a pretty sharp weapon against him. The villain I could have done without was the Sandman. His character was interesting but his place in the film as a main character seemed unnecessary and forced. He's an escaped convict running from the police who accidentally falls into a big science experiment and becomes the Sandman. He is also apparently the actual killer of Peter's uncle Ben thus giving Peter motivation to go after him. This reworking of the first film's story seems very far fetched and unnecessary. The computer effects used to create Sandman are terrific as is the performance by Thomas Hayden-Church, but I think the film would have improved without him. More time could then have been given to the conflicts with Harry and Eddie and likewise Goblin and Venom. Venom is particularly nice because he's the only villain not the product of some crazy experiment gone wrong. His creation is almost entirely Peter's fault. Venom acts as a slimy toothy grinning anti-Spider-Man, who hates Spider-Man on a personal level after Eddie Brock loses his job and girlfriend and holds Peter responsible. Two villains definitely would've been enough for one film, especially two villains that feel wronged by Peter personally, not just Peter as Spider-Man. I don't really want them to continue this series, but since it seems like they may anyway, I hope some lesson is learned with number three that less really can be more. If the time that was spent awkwardly packing too many stories into one film was instead spent working on one good story so that it flowed naturally, Spider-Man 3 could have excelled the way number two did.


Waitress (2007)

Not your typical romantic comedy, 30 April 2007

Author: molldawg from United States

Ever since the Felicity days I've loved Keri Russell, so I was excited to see a screening of this in Santa Monica a week or so ago. I also have enjoyed Nathan Fillion in Serenity and the short-lived show Firefly that preceded that. But even with those expectations I was pleasantly surprised with this movie. It seems like in the past few years movies have become (or maybe they have always been) incredibly predictable. You go see a romantic comedy and it's almost like you can write the next line. I don't know about you, but I kind of like not knowing what is going to come next. That is part of the intrigue. The characters in this movie were diverse, funny, and completely endearing. In Waitress the dialogue is surprising and different. I really enjoyed the quirkiness of the characters. The crowd I viewed this movie with spanned many generations and it seemed to me that nearly everyone was laughing and enjoying themselves. I would recommend this to guys, girls, whoever...if you go in thinking it is going to be like every other movie you will really be happy when you leave the theater. I am definitely going to see it again when it is released this weekend.


Disturbia (2007)

Best thriller I've seen in a while., 15 April 2007

Author: theshadow908 from London, Ontario

Disturbia tells the story of a teenage boy named Kale who is sentenced to three months house arrest after punching a teacher in the face for making a comment about his recently deceased father. When his mother takes away his TV and his computer, he resorts to spying on the houses surrounding him. Things begin to get frightening when he begins to suspect one of his neighbours is a serial killer. He gets his friends involved with his impromptu investigation, and soon the neighbour realizes he's being watched...And he's not too happy about it. Disturbia is loosely based off the 1954 Alfred Hitchcock classic Rear Window, but it is still a film all in itself, and it is the best thriller I've seen in a while.

What makes this movie better than most horror movies that are released today is that is doesn't rely on excessive gore and gross out tactics to frighten you. It relies on mood and suspense, and that works so much better. As the film went on, the tension got so high that I was literally on the edge of my seat rubbing my hands together because I was so anxious to see what was going to happen next. I actually felt the adrenaline rush that the characters in the film must have been feeling when they were snooping around in the neighbour's garage. The movie has a realistic feel of how creepy it would be to have a serial killer living across the street from you and you had no way to prove it. Everything in this movie is done well. The writing, the directing, the way it all pans out. I was actually shocked when I left the theatre over how good this movie really was.

The acting was very good from everybody involved. Shia LaBeouf has come a long way from Even Stevens. Something tells me that he has a nice career ahead of him. David Morse is perfectly sinister as the neighbour. He's just one of those actors that you might not know who he is to hear his name, but he pops up here and there and you always say, "Cool, it's that guy." Overall, this was an amazing thriller, and I'm glad I went to see it because I really wasn't expecting that much. It leads me to wonder why Hollywood continues to pump out absolute garbage like the Saw trilogy, Hostel, and Dead Silence when they could be making movies like this instead.


Next (2007)

Great action movie, 28 April 2007

Author: Wesley Parsons from United States

I completely disagree with the last review. This movie is one of the best action movies I've seen in a while. The action is not overwhelming, and all the scenes are well done. The best part of all is that, unlike most movies these days, the previews don't give away every good scene. Given, the previews give away almost all of the entire plot, but we are talking about the same author who wrote Minority Report. So, why not a 10? The only downside would have to be that some of the acting is not as good as you would hope. Jessica Biel is not unconvincing as a love interest, but she's not entirely convincing. The plot is somewhat predictable, but there are surprises. Don't forget, this is an ACTION film. Not a romantic comedy; not a love story. It serves its point as an action film, and it serves it well. Very well, indeed.



Restaurant Reviews


Situated next to Concordia University's downtown campus, Kafein is a popular student hangout with an unpretentious atmosphere. Upstairs, the cafe serves a range of simple but tasty salads, soups and sandwiches along with some terrific coffee. Downstairs, patrons relax, chill-out with friends and enjoy a drink or two.
Address: 1429A, rue Bishop Montreal  QC  Canada  H3G 2E4
514 904-6969 

La Casa del Popolo
La Casa del Popolo is not only a fair trade cafe offering light snacks. It is also a bar, a live music venue and a gallery. Each month, the cafe hosts a cabaret drag show called Meow Mix, which features a variety of music (except house), for the cafe's lesbian patrons.
Address: 4848, boulevard Saint-Laurent Montreal  QC  Canada  H2T 1R5
514 284-3804 

Shed Café
Great lounge-cum-restaurant on the the trendy Saint-Laurent Boulevard, with good food and equally well-made drinks. I recommend the martinis. Perfect place to kick off the evening while waiting for the clubs to get started.
Address: 3515 St Laurent Blvd;
(514) 842 0220

A great little lunch place on rue Saint Pierre which has all the feel of a sit down restaurant at cafeteria prices, ranging from 8-12 dollars. Not worth going to visit on its own, but a great place to recuperate at lunchtime if you are visiting the old town
445 rue Saint Pierre, near Vieux Montreal;
(514) 849 0894;
Metro: Square Victoria;

Le Cafe Cherrier
It's a cafe/bistro best brunch in Montreal, right in the heart of the Plateau, the most atmospheric area in Montreal on the St-Denis. The hollandaise actually tastes like it's homemade. Nice outdoor terrace in summer, very cosy in the winter. Almost Parisian.
3635 rue St-Denis;
(514) 843 4908; nearest metro: Sherbrook

Café Utopik
Very comfy hangout café, lazy and leisurely and local. Time-worn sofas and seats with live music and vegan fare, located in the hipster region of the French downtown divide, bordering on the Latin quarter.
Open Celtic music Monday nights; traditional Québec dancin' & fiddlin' Wednesday nights. Other nights list other loc(o)al musicfolk, and local art is showcased on the walls.
Mission of the place: To promote relations between people who share a common vision on ecology, society, communuty and culture.

552, Ste. Catherines Est
(across from Berri-UQAM metro);
tel: (514) 844 1139



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