Terminator 3

By Adam Lippe

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Very poorly paced and written, and awkwardly acted by Nick Stahl. The Terminatrix doesn’t have much to do, and they don’t give her any cool powers. She seems a step backwards (and she is vanquished in a rather simple way as well) from Robert Patrick’s T-1000 from T2. The huge flaw at the center of the movie, is that the one interesting thing that she can do, shoot a laser out from her arm, would have invalidated the need for a chase in the first place as she could have easily killed Connor and company from quite a distance, let alone when she’s right on top of them.

There is an enormous action scene about 30-35 minutes in that involves trucks and cranes and many other large objects. But it isn’t really well put together and the special effects are hardly seamless. It’s just noisy. Then there isn’t another action scene for about 45 minutes, and it’s more of an afterthought, like they realized they hadn’t had any action for a while.

The ending is a decent idea, if it were only explored and not used as a device to get the two main characters together, rather than actually feel the consequence of the act. It’s a shame that director Jonathan Mostow has sunk to this level after the terrific genre movie Breakdown, the action cousin to the original The Vanishing.

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Roadracers

By Adam Lippe

Whenever there’s a genre parody or ode to a specific era of films, such as Black Dynamite’s mocking of Blaxploitation films or Quentin Tarantino’s Death Proof, the second half of Grindhouse, the danger is that the film might fall into the trap of either being condescending without any particular insight, or so faithful that it becomes the very flawed thing it is emulating.

Black Dynamite has nothing new to say about Blaxploitation films, it just does a decent job of copying what an inept [...]


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Featured Quote (written by me)

On Cold Fish:

Though the 16 year old me described the 1994 weepie Angie, starring Geena Davis as a Brooklyn mother raising her new baby alone, as “maudlin and melodramatic,” Roger Ebert, during his TV review, referring to the multitude of soap-operaish problems piling up on the titular character, suggested that it was only in Hollywood where Angie would get a happy ending. “If they made this movie in France, Angie would have shot herself.”

Well Cold Fish was made in Japan, where Angie would have shot herself and that would have been the happy ending.