ORBzine - 2001.11 Cinema Movies Reviews

ORBzine Movie Reviews November 2001 Special


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Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back

Soon Stoner duo Jay [Jason Mewes] and Silent Bob [director Kevin Smith ] discover that a movie based on them is being made, and they won't make a penny out of it. Worse, people on the Internet are bad-mouthing them - and our heroes can't take criticism.

They decide to stop the film being made, so they hitch-hike across the United States. On the way they encounter a friendly nun [ Carrie Fisher ] and the Scooby Doo gang!

As the movie gets going the guys hitch a ride with some Charlies Angels types, including Justice [ Shannon Elizabeth ] and Eliza Dushku . Ms Dushku has made a career of playing bad girls, even her role in teen comedy Bring It On was a watered-down version of her character Faith in Buffy the Vampire Slayer . This is no exception.

Finally they get to Hollywood, where we get yet more cameo appearances from the likes of Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, as well as the American Pie-f*cker and Jason Van Der Beck. Even Wes Craven pops up, directing Stab 3 - a nice tie-in with Jay & Silent Bob's cameo in Scream 3 . Here, they even have a lightsaber duel with super-villain Cock-Knocker [Mark Hamill].

This is a wonderful piece of screen comedy, the best thing Smith has done since Mallrats .

  • Dogma
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  • The Animal

    The Animal Rob Schneider [ Judge Dredd ] plays Marvin, an unfortunate loser who is in a terrible car crash. He is reconstructed by a mad scientist who uses animal parts. As a result, Marvin has special animal super-senses. He can run as fast as a horse, sniff out drugs like a sniffer dog, and so on. As a result he is recruited by the local police department.

    Marvin's animal parts affect his subconscious. As a result there is slapstick humour when he marks out his territory and tries to mate with things. Comedy ensues, though there really isn't much of it. Schneider's previous offering, Deuce Bigalow, is a funnier film.

    The town is menaced by a man-beast. Has Marvin's animal side taken over? This is the view of a mob of rowdy rabble, including comedians Adam Sandler [ Little Nicky ] and Norm McDonald [ Dr Doolittle ].

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  • Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

    Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone Harry Potter was orphaned while a baby, and grew up with his abusive aunt and uncle and his spoilt cousin. However, he has magic powers and is selected to attend the exclusive Hogwarts school for Witches & Wizards.

    The school's House system includes a House for slimy power-chasing types, commanded by Professor Snape [Alan Rickman - Die Hard]. Harry and his friends Ron and Hermione suspect that Snape is plotting to steal the Headmaster's secret plot device, so in the spirit of the best Childrens' Adventure stories they team up to outwit the villainous adult.

    Chris Columbus has delivered an extremely faithful adaption of the book. There are a couple of reasons for this. Firstly, with this film's budget there was no point in cutting scenes for time reasons or SPFX costs. Secondly, Joanne Rowling apparently retained creative control. Certain celebrity cameos [John Hurt and Julie Walters are the obvious ones] are actually cameo appearances of the characters themselves, who play much larger roles in the following books. The excessive celebrity appearances include John Cleese [as Billy Connolly] and the voice of Leslie Philips.

    At over two hours the film is longer than most childrens' films, although it does not lag. However, the story has a very episodic feel to it, as if it were split into seperate and distinct chapters. The other problem is that while this is a childrens' story there are some scenes which are quite brutal - one a decapitation, and the other is straight out of the climax of Raiders Of The Lost Ark.

    The film is the first of a series of big-budget SF films that will be coming out in the next twelve months. Two of the others have trailers that run just before this film - yes, Lord of the Rings and Attack of the Clones. However, apparently it's only every other reel that has the SW2 trailer.

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  • The Others

    The Others Nicole Kidman plays a single mother who lives in a remote mansion with her two children. The children are photosensitive, so the curtains are always drawn shut. Kidman is a control freak, who demands that her children learn and obey the rules of Christianity and yet derides belief in ghosts as superstition. However, things start to go bump in the night ...

    Yes, this is a ghost story. But compared to Sixth Sense or even What Lies Beneath it's predictable and pedestrian.

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