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Non-Review Review: Boyz N The Hood

Boyz n the Hood remains a powerful, moving and depressing piece of cinema. Director John Singleton has arguably failed to match this impressive debut effort, but there’s no shame in that. Most directors will go entire careers without offering a film that so effectively captures a slice of life. Reportedly based on a lot of the director’s own experiences growing up in South Central L.A., it’s a very strong and very personal piece of film, and one that hasn’t been diminished in the years that followed its release.

As happy as Larry?

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Non-Review Review: We Bought a Zoo

The biggest problem facing We Bought a Zoo is that it can’t ever decide how serious a family drama it wants to be. It follows a family recovering from the loss of their mother by purchasing a zoo and attempting to renovate it, and it never finds a healthy balance between the shamelessly upbeat montage-set-to-classic-pop “live your crazy dreams!” feel-good fun and the heavier subject of a family finding piece. The result is a movie that often feels a little toosweet and a little too earnest at the same time, and never manages to mix the two tones with a great deal of success.

Not quite out of the park...

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Berry Your Head in Shame: Watching The White Dwarf Stars In Slow Motion…

Speedman is a dying star. A white dwarf headed for a black hole. That’s physics. It’s inevitable.

– Les Grossman, Tropic Thunder

Fame is like anything else. It’s like money or luck. It comes and it goes. Still, as the poster for Halle Berry’s latest film, Dark Tide, arrive, it’s hard not to feel a little bit sorry for those performers who have watched their fame and popularity slip out from underneath them.

Halle Berry won an Oscar for Monster’s Ball. She played one of the few James Bond characters to be considered for a spin-off, appearing in Die Another Day. She got a considerable pay increase for showing her breasts in Swordfish. She headlined one of the very few female-centric superhero films, the dire Catwoman. Not all of those were good films. In fact, being harsh, I’d argue that one of them was a good film, and the rest were significantly flawed, if not outright terrible. Still, it’s quite sad to see the former Oscar-winner relegated to appearing in the latest film from the director of Blue Crush and Into the Blue.

She did make some Berry questionable choices...

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Can a Good Talent Be Over-Exposed?

Jeremy Renner is having a good year. Recently confirmed to take over from Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, offered the job of taking over from Matt Damon in the Bourne series, playing Hawkeye in both Thor and The Avengers, and starring in Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters, it seems that Renner is on the cusp of being huge. And, for those of us who have noted Renner’s performances in films like The Town and The Hurt Locker, it’s surely well-deserved. However, can Renner be over-exposed?

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Swanky Lady: Spare a Thought for Hilary Swank…

I feel sorry for Hilary Swank right now, but also a little hurt and confused. Swank should be a respected character actor at the very least, and I’d argue that she has the potential for a distinguished and competent leading lady. After all, the woman has two Oscars on her shelves and she’s not even forty (for Million Dollar Baby and Boys Don’t Cry). That’s some kind of spectacular acting accomplishment right there. We should be looking at the next Meryl Streep, a woman who can grow old with dignity and remain a well-respected and admired performer. So, I am quite surprised to find that Swank is starring in a direct-to-video Hammer horror film, The Resident.

And I’m trying to understand how that can happen.

I thought an Oscar was supposed to open doors...

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