Monday, March 24, 2003

Chicago Tribune | Kidman wins best actress; many surprises in low-key Oscars
By Michael Wilmington
Tribune movie critic
Published March 24, 2003
With a world at war and nations divided, Hollywood turned out in force for the 75th annual Academy Awards Sunday night -- a muted but still glamorous and sometimes witty spectacle that saw most of the top prizes bestowed on the breezily cynical and glitzy musical "Chicago" and the devastating Polish Holocaust chronicle "The Pianist."

With host Steve Martin helping the Kodak Theatre audience put on a temporarily happy face, the evening's big winners were led, as expected, by the high-stepping, sexy movie musical adapted from the late Bob Fosse's 1975 Broadway hit about crime and celebrity in Chicago's Roaring '20s and unexpectedly by the somber "The Pianist." Winning a total of six Oscars, the surprise critical and audience hit "Chicago" -- seen by many as marking a definitive resurgence for the long dormant genre of the film musical -- took a best picture prize and a best supporting actress nod for Catherine Zeta-Jones, plus Oscars for art direction, editing, sound and costume design.
Complete List of Oscar Winners

Tuesday, March 18, 2003

The Bourne Identity (2002)
One Hour Photo (2002) - Robin Williams. good performance.
DVD. 7/10

Signs (2002) - Ordinary.
DVD. 6.5/10

The Color Purple (1985) - Dir by Steven Spielberg. Whoopi Goldberg (debut), Danny Glover, Oprah Winfrey. Wonderful cinematic translation of a novel by Alice Walker. Plot Outline: The life and trials of a young African American Woman.
DVD. 154 mins. 7.5/10

Friday, March 07, 2003

John Q - avoid at all cost. trash.
Being John Malkovich (1999) - conceptually good and with a lot of potential that is wasted. with some sparks of brilliance in between, the movie ends up rather ordinarily. good performances by John Cusack, Cameron Diaz, Catherine Keener. the puppeteer shows in the early part of the movie are wonderful. also, the idea of getting into subconscious of Malkovich and seeing all kinds of stuff inside was of good potential but is wasted by being verbose and predictable.

DVD. 6.5/10
Road to Perdition (2002) - fairly average chicago mob (of 30s) saga. pales drastically in comparison to other movies of this genre. the screenplay is mediocre and even with names like Tom Hanks and Paul Newman, the movie is unattractive. Hanks plays a mob hitman Michael Sullivan and IMO is miscast. on the other hand Newman is brilliantly cast for the mafia boss and carries it well too. anyway, run-of-the-mill stuff.

DVD. 6/10.