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aqua teen hunger force

Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon The Movie Film expands the Comedy Central [adultswim] series into an 87 minute swath of foul language, lousy animation and an impossible to follow story fit only for those who are stoned out of their minds. Yet another piece of junk fit for a grindhouse.

Are We Done Yet?

Are We Done Yet?, the sequel to the very successful Are We There Yet? screened at the same time as Grindhouse, forcing us to opt for the adult fare. If you loved the first film in this sequence, you probably have the kidlets banging on your legs to take 'em to this sequel, which looks remarkably like a Tom Hanks bomb (a remake of a Cary Grant 50s hit) of a lot of years back. But that's just us.

The Assassinaton of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford stars Brad Pitt in a 2 and a half hour epic that put the critic behind us to sleep -- snoring loudly. We managed to stay awake -- barely. Stay home.


Atonement stars Saoire Ronan as a thirteen years old girl who sees an older sister messing with the son of a servant and squeals. This is pre-war England. Kiera Knightly and James McAvoy are the couple. Class differences being what they were, he goes to jail for rape. The young 'un grows to be a novelist whose book Atonement tells the tale, with WWII tossed in to wake up us males who have been stupefied by the half hour or so it takes to set the overriding story up. This will be acclaimed as a great love story we think, because it bored us silly.Suck it up, gentlemen. This will be a major must-see for the femme side of the dateflick equation.


Australia stars Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman. An English noblewoman (Kidman) ventures to the land Down Under to liquidate her husband's territorial properties. There, she finds political intrigue, an adorable half-breed and a mysterious cattleman called The Drover (Jackman). All this and World War II. Unfortunately, Australia is ninety minutes of story in a near three hour package. Wait and rent.

away from her

Away From Her offers a knock-out performance from the (now) rarely seen Julie Christie whose character, after 40+ happily married years to a university professor (Gordon Pinset), loses her mind to Alzheimer's disease. If you've experienced the loss of a loved one to the disease you really don't need to get your emotional guts ripped out all over again.


Badland stars Jamie Dravan as a military vet who comes home unable to take his place in regular society. His family is as supportive as they can be, until nasty stuff starts happening and family members make like fugitives. The first five minutes is non-stop "f" words. The two hours that follow will bore you stupid. Film Students only.

balls of fury

Balls of Fury is the first ping pong meets martial arts mayhem comedy we've seen in almost as long as we can remember - which isn't much more than a week or two . . . wait! that means the only ping pong martial arts mayhem comedy we've seen is saved by Christopher Walken stealing every scene he's in. Everything else is flat out stupid/ silly. Great for 14 year old boys.

bank job

The Bank Job stars Jason Stathan. The title tells you just about all you need to know, though there's so much more to the rhyme and reason of why this true Brit bank heist came into being that, once you work through the thick as a brick Brit accents, you should greatly enjoy your  romp through the criminal underpinnings of last century London. Seriously, the film is a tremendous bit of fun and greatly recommended.

Battle in Seattle

Battle in Seattle stars Charlize Theron and Woody Harrelson in a fictional drama set against real life protests and riots at the WTO meetings in Seattle a couple of weeks back. Serious? Yep. Watch-able? Also yep. Serious adults go to this one. [$6.50]

balls of fury

Balls of Fury is the first ping pong meets martial arts mayhem comedy we've seen in almost as long as we can remember - which isn't much more than a week or two . . . wait! that means the only ping pong martial arts mayhem comedy we've seen is saved by Christopher Walken stealing every scene he's in. Everything else is flat out stupid/ silly. Great for 14 year old boys.

Be Kind Rewind

Be Kind Rewind is this season's Jack Black comedy, co-starring the eminent Daniel Glover as the owner of a vid store doomed to destruction by the forces of urbanization in Passaic, NJ. Said site was birthplace to jazz great Fats Waller and JB leads the fight for historic preservation. It's only an average comedy and you'll forget all about it in 24 hours. That makes it a fair dateflick. So, take one. ($3/10)

beyond the gates

Beyond the Gates is the third depiction of Rwandan genocide we've seen in the past year or two. This film has the strongest dramatic story, involving a teacher (Hugh Dancy) and a Catholic priest (John Hurt) who have to decide to flee when the UN says so or stay behind. Honestly? Had we not been through genocidal depiction twice we'd give a strong recommendation -- if you've got a strong stomach. Of the three, this is the best written, clearest explanation of why the slaughter happened,up against a dramatized story.


Bolt, from Pixar / Disney is voiced by John Travolta and Miley Cyrus, he a Hollywood teevee superdog and she as his "person". FedExed to New York by mistake, our hero must paw his way back to the left coast, accompanied by a cat (Susie Essman) and a hamster in a plastic ball (Mark Walton) whom he meets along the way. Great for parental units lugging kids up to eleven. Great for stoners, though the first half is funnier than the second. Happy campers seeking lots of BOLT wallpaper, click here.

Boy A

Boy A stars Andrew Garfield as a child murderer who, having served his time, is released back into a community that doesn't want him. The film is so incredibly bleak that we couldn't face the blank screen to write it up. Even the arthouse aficionados will walk out numb.

Black Sheep

Black Sheep stars a herd of very hungry people eating sheep. You'll never think of ordering lamb chops again BUT comedy wise it's a pretty funny flick. Find it. See it.

brave one

Jodie Foster stars in The Brave One, a terrific and compelling drama about mugging and revenge -- Foster's character is mugged, her fiance is killed and her dog is stolen. She gets a gun -- and yes she tries to do it legally but those damned liberals and their gun control laws -- you know -- and goes hunting. More appropriate for a setting of New York in the 1970s but, what have you. Terrence Howard co-stars as the detective on the investigation. Strongly recommended.


Cloverfield, whose studio banned online critics from advanced screenings to "keep the secrets off the Web." Yeah, right. You know what that means...

We haven't seen such a commercially successful, over hyped waste of time in the dark since The Blair Witch Project. There's nothing more to this "monster the size of a skyscraper goes stomping on Manhattan" movie than special effects. The story is so lacking it makes the rehash of the rehash of Godzilla look like Gone With The Wind . . . what a bloody waste of time.

Then again, our niece (age 17) and her friends looooved it. We still love her <g>

The Condemned

The Condemned stars WWE wrestler "Stone Cold" Steve Austin as one of ten hard core killers (except for the one that isn't) kidnapped and dropped on a Pacific island. One will get off the island with a commutation of sentence. Everyone else will be dead ... and the world gets to watch on a pay per view Internet broadcast! Yep, it's The Running Man for a new decade [those older than us can input the name of the their generation's film here] but not nearly as interesting

day watch

Day Watch is a beautiful to look at Russian language sequel to something called Night Watch. Having something to do with Lords of Good and Evil and who runs the day and night and who sucks blood or whatever, the film fairly begs for dubbing (instead of subtitles). Between the pix and the titles, Cranky had no idea what the heck was going on! If you loved Night Watch you know if you want to see this one.


Descent stars Rosario Dawson in what is perhaps the most unpleasant sit of the year. In it, the star plays a college student whose life goes to hell when screaming "ENOUGH!" isn't enough to stop what becomes date rape. Rape is flat out wrong, folks. Don't get confused about that. What comes next, when her character gets the chance to take revenge? Even hard core film student geeks will turn away. You are warned.

diving bell butterfly

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly is based on the true story of a stroke victim who dictated a best selling novel by blinking his eyelids to spell out the words for his opus. Considering that we lived something similar (broken neck and paralysis, three times) we should  have been greatly sympathetic and interested, but we weren't.

elizabeth the golden age

Elizabeth: The Golden Age reunites most of the cast and crew of 1998's Elizabeth in a film equally as passion-less and twice as boring. Considering the historical subject matter: England versus the Spanish Armada, we could've been stunned. We were, but not in the good way. Pass.

the express

The Express stars Dennis Quaid and Rob Brown. Once upon a time, negro individuals didn't play college or pro ball. This is the story of the second man to manage that but the first to win the coveted Heisman Trophy in the process.

That's all you really need to know. The Express is quite an enjoyable sit and, released at the start of the football season with film award wannabees breathing down its neck, the film will find its audience by word of mouth rental.

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The Cranky Critic® is a Registered Trademark of, and this website is Copyright © 1995-2015 Chuck Schwartz. All Rights Reserved. Articles and interviews by Paul Fischer are Copyright © 1999 - 2006 Paul Fischer. All images, unless otherwise noted, are property of and ©, ®, ™ their respective studios. Used by permission. Not to be used or copied for any commercial purpose. Academy Award™(s) and Oscar®(s) are registered trademarks and service marks of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. All Rights Reserved.