Tag Archives: Elijah Wood

The Wind Rises

In 1920s Japan, young Jiro Horikoshi dreams of building planes and heads to an engineering school in Tokyo; his work will also take him to Nazi Germany… What was originally called Hayao Miyazaki’s last film before retiring is not for children, but an animated biography of the man who built the fighter planes that Japan … Continue reading The Wind Rises

I don’t feel at home in this world anymore.

FOR RUTH, THE LAST STRAW WAS A SPOON.  Nursing assistent Ruth Kimke (Melanie Lynskey) discovers that someone has broken into her home and enlists the help of an eccentric neighbor (Elijah Wood) to track down her stolen laptop. The director’s debut is a very entertaining thriller-comedy that finds a perfect vehicle for Lynskey who’s funny … Continue reading I don’t feel at home in this world anymore.

The Ice Storm

IT WAS 1973, AND THE CLIMATE WAS CHANGING.  After the romantic intrigues of Sense and Sensibility (1995), director Ang Lee gave us something equally human but colder. We’re drawn into the relationships between teenagers and adults, families who gather in the suburbs in 1973 over the Thanksgiving weekend. The kids explore their sexuality and early, … Continue reading The Ice Storm

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

FROM THE SMALLEST BEGINNINGS COME THE GREATEST LEGENDS. Gandalf the wizard (Ian McKellen) convinces a hobbit, Bilbo (Martin Freeman), to join his party of 13 dwarves on a quest to reclaim a treasure that was stolen by a mighty dragon. Set sixty years before the Lord of the Rings trilogy, Peter Jackson’s grand return to … Continue reading The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

Bobby

22 lives linked by a moment the world would never forget. It took Emilio Estevez many years to get this movie done, but eventually it turned into a talked-about event with a truly star-studded cast. The story follows 22 people who stay or work at the Ambassador Hotel in L.A. at the time when Robert … Continue reading Bobby

Happy Feet

WARNING: MAY CAUSE TOE-TAPPING. In Antarctica a very special emperor penguin called Mumble is born; unlike all the others he can dance but not sing, which makes his life a lot harder. A film that starts cute and corny, with the penguins performing “Kiss” by Prince, and that silliness recurs too often for my taste; I … Continue reading Happy Feet

Eternal Sunshine: Thanks for the Memories

YOU CAN ERASE SOMEONE FROM YOUR MIND. GETTING THEM OUT OF YOUR HEART IS ANOTHER STORY.   Screenwriter Charlie Kaufman must have been pretty happy with his work after the success of Being John Malkovich (1999) and Adaptation. (2002). His friend Pierre Bismuth, a performance artist, had also given him an idea for another screenplay that would play around … Continue reading Eternal Sunshine: Thanks for the Memories

Back to the Future Part II

GETTING BACK WAS ONLY THE BEGINNING. Immediately upon returning from 1955, Marty and Doc Brown (Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd) go to 2015 in order to stop disastrous events from ruining the future for Marty’s family. Director Robert Zemeckis portrays the future in an artificial and silly way without the kind of love and credibility that … Continue reading Back to the Future Part II

Sin City

THERE IS NO JUSTICE WITHOUT SIN. This adaptation of a graphic novel is a first in the way that the creator actively worked with the director on the visual style of the film. There are four stories, all set in the rainy, dark and unforgiving place called Basin City. Everything is so grim-looking, so noir, … Continue reading Sin City

Return of the King: At Journey’s End

THIS CHRISTMAS THE JOURNEY ENDS. So, we’re at journey’s end. Peter Jackson’s final chapter of his “Lord of the Rings” trilogy was hailed at the 2004 Academy Awards and many chose to see the overwhelming praise as some kind of summary reward for the whole trilogy. So do I, because there’s nothing in this film … Continue reading Return of the King: At Journey’s End