Movie Reviews

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Power Mower
Lawn Dogs yawns first, then surges
, June 11, 1998
For much of its first hour, Lawn Dogs staggers between success and failure. The film's first images, for example, of a "Lawn Dog" (an unfortunate... More>>
Love Bane of Cobain
Kurt and Courtney overcomes serious flaws for an intriguing, offbeat documentary
, June 11, 1998
Nick Broomfield's biggest asset is his ability to keep a straight face. The British documentary-maker's several films about transgressive women... More>>
Tube Message
Everyman's Jim Carrey examines TV's omnipotence in The Truman Show
, June 04, 1998
The Truman Show, starring Jim Carrey, is the zeitgeist movie of the hour. How could it not be? It's all about the omnipotence of television and... More>>
This False Note's for You
, June 04, 1998
Call it "Neilism": the unblinking acceptance of just about anything Neil Young does, just because it's him doing it. The far-too-cozy alleged... More>>
Disco Daze Downer
Dance-craze era bows out squeaky clean
, June 04, 1998
Most people associate the disco era with hedonism, homosexuality, a sense of community, tacky fashions and awful music. But in The Last Days of... More>>
Irony Deficient
Hope Floats stays shallow
, May 28, 1998
Only a week after lizards came crawling across the nation's screens in both Godzilla and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Hope Floats comes... More>>
Monster Mash
Small, TV-sized minds and marketing overshadow special effects
, May 28, 1998
The "Size Matters" marketing campaign for Godzilla is far more ingenious than the movie. It's also highly annoying -- and somewhat misleading.... More>>
A Fine Kettle of Fluff
, May 21, 1998
Where was the montage? About halfway through the Brit caper comedy Shooting Fish, lovely young heroine Georgie (Kate Beckinsale) and sensitive... More>>
Contact High
Fear and Loathing is the latest in Terry Gilliam's cinematic revolution
, May 21, 1998
Could it have been all the drugs that kept Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas from being made into a movie? Whatever the cause, journalist Hunter S.... More>>
Post-Commie Depression
In A Friend of the Deceased, our hero longs for the U.S.S.R.
, May 21, 1998
Vyacheslav Krishtofovich's new film, A Friend of the Deceased, is really two studies: one in the violent changes the former Soviet bloc countries... More>>
Lame Horse
They shoot bad films, don't they?
, May 14, 1998
The Horse Whisperer, the latest film from Robert Redford -- and the first of his directorial efforts in which he also stars -- could almost serve... More>>
The Larry David Show
The man behind Seinfeld moves to the big screen
, May 14, 1998
Not since the death of Diana has there been a pop phenomenon as cataclysmic as the demise of Seinfeld. The surrounding hoopla has reached such,... More>>
Out of Time
Narcissism drives Warren Beatty into the 'hood
, May 14, 1998
It's the tail end of the 1996 California primary election, and incumbent Democratic Senator Jay Bulworth (Warren Beatty) is having a nervous... More>>
Deja Vu All Over Again
The cocktail party never ends in le cinema du Henry Jaglom
, May 07, 1998
Henry Jaglom's movies offer everything that Americans hate about French films, but with little of the philosophical depth or visual daring that... More>>
Old School
This solidly retro Oscar-winner will satisfy nostalgia for old-fashioned melodramas
, May 07, 1998
One of the few seemingly spontaneous bursts of energy at the recent Oscar ceremony was provided by motor-mouthing Dutch director Mike van Diem,... More>>
Hit-and-Mis
Les Miserables is smart and sumptuous -- and way too tame
, April 30, 1998
Victor Hugo's 1862 novel Les Miserables, which he began in 1845, runs in most editions to around 1,500 pages. The latest film version -- there... More>>
Everyday Ravishments
Neil Jordan shows a childhood both deeply Irish and thoroughly deranged
, April 30, 1998
From its very first frame, Neil Jordan's The Butcher Boy whooshes us inside the rollicking, deranged world of 12-year-old Francie Brady (Eamonn... More>>
Shtick Figure
In Barbara Kopple's documentary, Woody Allen plays Woody Allen
, April 30, 1998
In Barbara Kopple's new documentary, Wild Man Blues, we follow Woody Allen around Europe on a whirlwind concert tour with his New Orleans jazz... More>>
Colonialism and Its Discontents
A heavy-handed allegory nearly sinks Chinese Box
, April 30, 1998
Chinese Box arrives with one of the weirdest hybrid pedigrees in living memory. The writing credits include -- in addition to the film's... More>>
Fouling Out
With He Got Game, Spike Lee lets down the sport he loves
, April 30, 1998
In the production notes for Spike Lee's new movie, He Got Game, the filmmaker is quoted as saying, "I don't think I've ever done a film that is... More>>
Money Changes Everything
In The Spanish Prisoner, even David Mamet's dialogue falls flat
, April 23, 1998
Is the opposite of offhand onhand? If so, The Spanish Prisoner is the most onhand movie since Stanley Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket. The... More>>
Double Timing
Sliding Doors charms with romantic complication
, April 23, 1998
Gwyneth Paltrow gets another chance to show off her letter-perfect English accent in Sliding Doors, an engaging romantic comedy that employs a... More>>
Promiscuous Prudes
James Toback's startling new film dives into the messy mindlessness of sex
, April 23, 1998
In writer/director James Toback's quicksilver sex comedy Two Girls and a Guy, Robert Downey, Jr., plays Blake Allen, a struggling New York actor... More>>
The Lying Game
, April 16, 1998
Pulling off a caper requires cunning. Pulling off a caper movie requires cunning and artistry, especially in an era when special effects have... More>>
Love and Abstinence
Director Julie Davis barely connects with I Love You, Don't Touch Me!
, April 16, 1998
With I Love You, Don't Touch Me!, first-time filmmaker Julie Davis has made a low-budget movie about love and abstinence among under-30s that... More>>
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