From Dusk Till Dawn (1996)

By David Grant


From Dusk Till Dawn has a special place in my heart. Not for its brilliance, but rather the comedy that was never meant to be.

Two bank robbers played by George Clooney (Seth) and Quentin Tarantino (Richie) kidnap a priest named Jacob played by Harvey Keitel on their way to Mexico.

It’s important to note that this movie is written by Tarantino and I always wonder why he would cast himself in the role of “strange guy who is a little perverted” Richie. Anyway, they get past the border and eventually arrive at a bar called the Titty Twister.

During the second half of the movie it is revealed that every person inside the bar is a vampire and comes at them from every angle.

There is a hidden message in this movie and that is to always travel with a Priest when on the run. You never know when you are going to run into a room of vampires.

From Dusk Till Dawn

If you find yourself up at 4am and find this movie on Starz, here’s five things to watch for:

  1. The character played by Tarantino. Exactly how much acting is going on here?
  2. As mentioned before, the name of the bar.
  3. The progression of the band as the people turn to vampires, the guitarist is playing bones. The guitarist is playing bones. I felt I needed to state that twice.
  4.  Harvey Keitel. I have a rule that I watch anything with either Keitel or Ice-T.
  5. Cheech Marin. I’ve already said too much

Don’t watch this if you are looking for something to put you to sleep. This is one of those it’s-4am-and I’ll-probably-be-up-for-the-next-three-days type movies.

P.S. Recently, a new tv series of ”From Dusk Till Dawn” aired

The Holiday (2006)

By David Grant

The Holiday Movie (2006)

If you are looking for a mind bending movie this is not what you want to see. Two women (Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet) switch houses (one in L.A., the other outside of London) and hilarity ensues. That is if your definition of hilarity is an improbable story line and Jude Law.

The movie starts off with Amanda (Diaz) deciding she needs to get out of town for the holidays, finding an online a website where people switch houses. You know, just like you booked your last vacation. How we all go on vacation.

Without a second thought of opening up her mansion to a stranger Amanda is out the door to London where Iris (Winslet) is leaving her quaint English house and heading to Hollywood. Has this ever actually happened?

Initially lonely, Diaz then ends up falling for a drunk Englishman (Jude Law) while Winslet’s character falls for a mumbling American (Jack Black). Has the hilarity started yet? Not quite yet, maybe it will be in the sequel (you will have to let me know).

Get past the dreamed up plot and bad acting and you have an easy going romantic comedy. That would be true if it wasn’t for the ongoing attempt of Diaz’s character trying to crying, but unable (we find out in the end she will only cry when it’s true love). There was a brief moment, when the tears started flowing that I thought to myself, this IS hilarious.

Indiana Jones And The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull (2008)

By Matthew Erickson

Indiana JonesDah De Dah Dah, Dah De dah….

Indiana is back, and this time he has a kid.

It is time to pull your commemorative hat and whip out of the “special room” that you and your wife set up after the kid went to college and get your behind to the nearest theater to catch Indiana Jones and the The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. When I first heard the news that Steven, George and Harry were actually planning to film a sequel after twenty years, I nearly wet myself in anticipation. Then, I scratched my head for five long minutes as I pondered the title. What on earth could the old fellow be up to? I decided to brush up on my Indiana-ology before the big event by watching all three of the previous Indiana Jones sagas.

Here are the Movie Review Haikus that I wrote for them…

Indiana Jones and the…

Raiders of the Lost Ark
Whip, gun and a hat,
World meets Indiana Jones
Changed Action Genre.

Temple of Doom
Call him Doctor Jones!
Hold on to your potatoes!
Fortune and Glory.

Last Crusade
Jones becomes “junior”
when teamed with dad to find cup
and battle Nazis.

Fracture (2007)

By Nancy Johnson

When your husband says to you, “I’ve been watching you sleep at night”, run… girl run! Run oh dang too late! Anthony Hopkins had a major ‘fracture’ in his head and let me tell you I am scared and his piercing blue eyes are as cold as his wife’s dead body.

“I could smell the blood and the s–t. It smelled like metal.” Hopkins says this to Ryan Gosling without even batting an eye or taking a breathe of remorse. Someone actually married this man? Hopkins plays an aerospace engineer who drives a fast car and he lives in a mansion. But, he also has many screws loose and no amount of smarts can fix that. Ladies be kind to your geeks.

Gosling plays the District Attorney who was supposed to put Hopkins away 1, 2, 3 (yeah right) and then move on to his cushy new job with his way-to-easy (you’re my new boy-toy) female boss. Can you put away the man who used to eat flesh in “The Silence of the Lambs” and who demanded to see Clarice? I think not.

There is one scene where Hopkins is in the kitchen washing himself in the sink (yes eww and more eww) and he stops and stares off to the side. That eerie look on his face made me wonder if he was thinking, “I need my fava beans.”

Speaking of looks, there are many awesome facial expressions that are scenes within themselves. I want to give them away but with the great cinematography, you will see what I am referring to in the movie.

You will enjoy this film and you will watch it again as did I. It’s very entertaining and it will keep you on the edge of your couch waiting for Hopkins to crack.

There are deleted scenes and two alternate endings. However, the alternate endings will leave you asking more questions. The original, true ending is the best.

Fracture (2007)

By Corisa Moreno

Ouch! Ouch! Please stop beating me over the head with your secondary plot of pseudo-moral judgment calls. You are going to fracture my skull. You see, fracture means to crack or break something, not to make a movie about a murderer and a prosecutor that we really don’t care about.

Plot overview: Anthony Hopkins’ character, Ted Crawford, shoots his unfaithful wife, gets arrested and then begins to act like a bumbling old fool in order to pull off his oh-so-clever scheme. The assistant district attorney, Willy Beachum (Ryan Gosling) is a young hot shot who just landed a job at a big corporate firm. He gets Crawford’s case in his last week of work at the humble DA’s office. Should he stay at his low paying but righteous job or should he go make corporate bank? It is a hard, difficult and painfully soul-searching quest that Willy has embarked on. But ultimately, he needs to find that dang murder weapon.

I was so bored with them continuously trying to find the murder weapon that if I could have, I would have told them where to find the murder weapon and then we wouldn’t have to hear about finding the murder weapon anymore. But of course, finding the murder weapon is the crux of this terribly unengaging ‘psychological thriller’.

And then there’s the girl. This is my imagined scenario at the meeting of the minds around this movie…

“Dudes, the chicks we have right now are: the cheating wife in a coma and the secretaries that run around and help dress our main character. We gotta think ‘audience’. We need to add a chica for the ladies to relate to and a little eye candy for the hombres. You know what I’m saying?”

“Love Interest! We can like make her his new corporate boss so the ladies will feel super empowered. And she’ll be like totally into him and like, fight to save his job, and maybe even invite him to her folks for Thanksgiving. You know, like she’s super into him but then at the end, she’s not there for him like all cold-hearted evil women. But he’s like, way better without her you know? And let’s make sure she’s blond.”

“Dude, this movie is going to rock.”