Wednesday, December 28, 2005

THE EXORCISM OF EMILY ROSE (2005)

SHORT REVIEW: Even sans pea soup, this is the best horror film in decades.


This film was made for $19,000,000.00. Spielberg’s War of The Worlds cost $132,000,000.00. It doesn’t take massive budgets to make greatness.

The Exorcist dominated the notion of showing an exorcism on film much in the same way Bond is the only one of his kind and Star Wars is the touchstone for all space films. These classics defined their subject matter, and to even think of getting a foothold on their ground is risky business. The Exorcism of Emily Rose made me forget about The Exorcist (the best horror film of all time.)

This film’s revolutionary element is reality. Director/Co-Writer Scott Derrickson infuses a strong sense of the real into his film which only serves to buttress the horror. Exorcism and demonic possession is a serious topic and Derrickson has the intelligence to take it sincerely. His honest look at the subject is what makes this film brilliant. The Exorcist took its subject matter very seriously as well, but upon reflection took loose translations of reality. This film doesn’t go the pea soup and head-spinning route. It keeps its characters and their troubles within the realm of the possible.

Derrickson’s film is strongly paced and smartly presented. Through the lens of a courtroom, we are exposed to the strange case of Emily Rose. Emily’s priest Father Moore is on trial for negligent homicide a result of the young woman’s death. Since the film comes at the subject matter through this avenue, Derrickson is able to present Emily’s story patiently and to it fullest effect. The courtroom scenes issue explanations of what is to come and then we are sent off to the horrible world of poor Emily Rose. The continual set up and then showing of the scary scenes in the film is quite powerful. The courtroom setting also sets up a Protestant court convicting a Catholic idea vibe…luckily this isn’t pushed too hard. I’ll move on before I get into a Protestant vs. Catholic thing.

The performances in the film match the strength of the writing and directing. Tom Wilkinson as Father Moore and Laura Linney as his attorney Erin Bruner perform to their normal high standards. These two are continuously good performers who almost always manage to offer solid work. The star of the film is Jennifer Carpenter who portrays Emily. While she doesn’t get many actual lines, she offers very convincing renditions of being possessed and going insane. This may not seem like much but it can be very difficult for an actor to get this kind of performance done properly. There is a thin line to walk between scary and stupid. While filming, the actor must look like a complete idiot writhing on the ground or making funny faces. They have to give their full trust to their director and hope they are talented enough to keep them from looking like a moron on the big screen. Carpenter’s performance is striking in that it doesn’t seem forced at all. As with Derrickson’s direction, Carpenter shows truthfulness in her performance and that gives this film its heart.

Overall, this is a truly brilliant film that is one of the year’s best. If you haven’t already seen this film, you should. It is clearly worth the rental price. Outstanding.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

THE CAT IN THE HAT (2003)

***Originally posted on ITS A MATTER OF OPINION***


SHORT REVIEW: Having Mike Myers perform in a kids movie is like having Charles Manson teach a course on anger management.


This film is an abomination but we get what we ask for.

Everyone knows film don’t matter right? We go to the theatre or turn on cable and turn our brains off. We all just want to be entertained. It’s just a movie.

This film is the result of attitudes like I mention above. We have spent our lives ambivalent to what the leftists, perverts and turd merchants have been doing to our culture for the sake of agenda and dollars. We have allowed the lowest forms of our society lower our standards down to their level. We have sat idly by while our entertainment has become a bustling carnival of pornographic idiocy.

We’ve made our bed, but I don’t want to sleep in it.

This film, although a few years old, should be a sound alert to those who still care that a time has come to make a change. This film clearly made for the youngest of audiences and uses the allure of a classic of children’s literature to draw audiences in. The production has the banner of Seuss to give it a façade of legitimacy. It is far from legit. This production has a flagrant disregard for the honorable work it is based on and any audience unfortunate to see it. Where this could have been an enchanting ode to the classic, we have cheap butt humor and swearing.

Mike Myers is not a brilliant comedian. He mugs for the camera and offers the lowest of humor. He peddles in groin jokes and is lauded by society as a master of the form. In The Cat In The Hat we are shown his complete lack of self-control or inventiveness. The character is nothing more than a faded copy of Austin Powers with slightly less rutting.

Parents, do not be fooled by the sign out front. There is nothing but poison for your children in here. This children’s film offers your kids erection jokes, cleavage, swearing (they cut the words off with bleeps or other loud noises) rectal and urination jokes and that’s what I can come up with off the top of my head. The entertainment you allow your children to consume is a critical choice for all parents. It shapes your child’s thinking and value system. Allow you kid to watch filth such as this and you’re pleading for trouble. Have some respect for your kids and demand more from those who wish to spend time with them. Do not allow the turd merchants to debase your kids for the sake of a quick buck. Keep them and yourself away from this movie.

Monday, December 26, 2005

THE SEA INSIDE (2004)

SHORT REVIEW: A brilliant film advertising the lowest of ideas.


The culture of death gets yet another movie made supporting it. Here’s the message coming from the international entertainment community: Abortions and “mercy killings” are grand. Sure, abortions have a long history of being racially applied by eugenicists and mercy killers tend to forget their Nazi forefathers but what the heck, leftists say its okay. Leftists only want what’s good for us.

Javier Bardem offers a masterful performance as Ramón Sampedro, a quadriplegic at the end of a decades long fight to “die with dignity”. This film is worthy of the Oscar it received because it is to be honest a great film. Then again, Triumph of The Will is a damn good flick as well.

Obviously, life as a quadriplegic is very hard. But it is still a life and life, despite what leftists want us to believe, is worth living. It is a gift even in its lowest times.

The term often used is “die with dignity”. This is great. Ask yourself, who is going to decide what “dignity” means? Who will decide when this “dignity” is lost? I know many will say, “Well duh, I WILL!” What about the mentally retarded woman down the street? What about the autistic boy across town? Will they choose? Do they live with enough dignity? At what point do their lives demand for them to “die with dignity”? This is where the lawyers come in…that means the state. Kids, this is called the slippery slope. Life is precious, too precious to be put into the hands of self-serving leftists who have the vision of a bat in an echo chamber. Yes, some people live with horrible circumstances and it may seem mericiful to put them down. But what of those left behind? Ramón Sampedro found his reward but what has he left behind? A world where it is just that much easier to kill without consequence. A world where leftists argue that killing the ill is "reasonable".

The Nazis began The Holocaust by killing the handicapped with a little remembered piece of human depravity known as the T-4 Euthanasia Program. Deemed to be a drag on society, the systematic murder of the retarded began. This accepted killing led naturally to more. Here is a clue for all of your Right-To-Die morons, once a society sets up a criterion for innocent people to be killed; it doesn’t take much for said criteria to expand. This is a lesson from history.

Simply, if we allow people to start killing themselves to “die with dignity” then we have to allow for people to kill others for the same reason. The ball rolls from there. It sickens me that this has to be explained by a dimwit such as myself. It sickens me that we have films made supporting the ideals of the Nazi party nearly seventy years later.

This film is a great but it is, in all honesty, evil.