movie film review | chris tookey

Johnny Vaughan


The Sun, UK


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Double Whammy (2002)
 A woeful crime comedy that went straight to video in the States, and should have gone straight into the dustbin over here… Elizabeth Hurley scarcely bothers to act as a sexy chiropractor, and it's hard to imagine what she sees in Denis Leary, charmless as an unlucky cop, or in the script which rambles on incoherently for 90 minutes and then seemingly collapses from boredom.
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 A toothless satire full of stale stereotypes and the usual embarrassing Liz Hurley performance.
  (Cosmo Landesman, Sunday Times)
 The film is like one of those dresses that made Hurley famous, a skimpy affair clumsily held together by obtrusive devices.
  (Philip French, Observer)
 Mad, bad and dangerously boring to watch - more of a triple whammy, really.
  (Catherine Shoard, Sunday Telegraph)
Welcome to Collinwood (2002)
It’s got everything I want in a movie. Original story, great characters, sharp dialogue and, above all, loads of laughs... I loved everything about this movie. The characters: Each one has their own story but all are utterly useless and small time. The dialogue: When William H. Macy utters the immortal line “Sweet Jesus I’m so broke” I couldn’t stop laughing for about half the film. And the pace of the film: There’s not a shred of fat on it and the whole thing rattles along at a good pace, building up to an unforgettable climax when they attempt to pull off the Bellini. Without doubt the funniest heist scene I’ve ever seen. I urge you all to go and watch this warm and hilarious movie. And when you’ve done that, go and see it again because, I promise you, it just gets better and better.
 Just a bunch of good actors flailing around in a caper that's neither original nor terribly funny.
  (Kim Linekin, Eye Weekly)
 You can tell almost immediately that Welcome to Collinwood isn't going to jell.
  (Marshall Fine, The Journal News)
 Despite its gritty Cleveland locations, it has the vacuum-sealed feel of a student film bankrolled by rich uncles.
  (Manohla Dargis, Los Angeles Times)
 Almost painfully unfunny with surprisingly little sense of place.
 (Philip French, Observer)
Revolver (2005)
The acting is spot-on. Singer-turned-actor Andre 3000 oozes charisma and his terrific double act with Pastore, who Sopranos fans will remember as Big Pussy, proves an inspired bit of casting. Elsewhere Ray Liotta deserves an award for his hilariously OTT turn as the insanely tanned Macha, but this week’s gold star for services to scene-stealing has to go to the excellent Mark Strong, as stuttering hitman Sorter. ***
 An absolute chore from start to finish... This is a terrible movie; it's generic and confusing and presented in a completely misshapen form. Here's hoping the filmmaker decides, next time out, to let someone else contribute a screenplay, because what he's slapped together for Revolver is as overwhelmingly indulgent as it is patently moronic.
 (Scott Weinberg,
 A convoluted, risibly overwrought muddle... Word of mouth will be a killer.
 (Screen International)
 How could Guy Ritchie, who showed such chutzpah in his first couple of films, have become such a muddled, pretentious bore?
  (Peter Bradshaw, Guardian)
 No ordinary turkey. If it is to be likened to any large, flightless bird, it resembles most of all a pea-brained ostrich that has forgotten to hide its head in the sand at the first sign of attack, and has chosen instead to insert its head all the way up its own fundament.
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
Parting Shots (1999)
Like Kind Hearts and Coronets... I have never seen Felicity Kendal look so good... Ben Kingsley - what an actor he is.
A Mighty Wind (2003)
Pure comedic genius. *****
House of 1000 Corpses (2003)
It’s been described as the most gruesome since The Texas Chain Saw Massacre — a view I wouldn’t like to argue against. It is classic horror material... A real gore fest — made by one Rob Zombie. Brutal.
Starsky and Hutch (2004)
This is as funny as funny can be.
Anchorman (2004)
We’ve had good comedies this summer but none can touch the side-splitting genius of Anchorman.
Shark Tale (2004)
It’s a bright, colourful, tuneful hit and its frenetic action makes it true eye-candy... It’s top-class entertainment.
Kingdom of Heaven (2005)
Spectacular... stunning... terrific.
Punch-Drunk Love (2002)
I loved it! A real treat from one of the best and most original directors around today.
25th Hour (2002)
The acting throughout is top notch, as you’d expect from any Spike Lee movie. Hoffman and Cox are excellent, so too is Rosario Dawson. Though I feel that in the support stakes, it’s newcomer Barry Pepper who really impressed me. It’s a great script and Lee has to be up there with Scorsese when it comes to filming New York. This is the kind of movie that stays with you long after you’ve left the cinema.
Old School (2003)
Old School is simple but, in my view, a film about partying should be as complicated as opening a can of beer. Luke Wilson, you’ll be pleased to hear, has that unique Wilson comedy gene. It’s good to see Swingers’ Vince Vaughn back on screen, and Ferrell as unreconstructed party animal Frank The Tank just gets funnier and funnier. One scene, when he accidentally shoots himself with a tranquiliser dart at a kids’ birthday party, had me holding my sides. There are a few other real laugh out loud moments and a little bit of depth there as well. Sit back and enjoy.
Hollywood Homicide (2003)
Pretty formulaic — there are car chases, a bit of loving, everything comes out good in the end — but it works.
Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas (2003)
Got to be the first choice for kids this Summer... There’s never time to be bored.
Jeepers Creepers 2 (2003)
An entertaining movie. It cracks along at a fair old pace, is well written, has some good characters (I especially liked the quietly heroic Taggart and weasel-like Scott) and is actually quite frightening. Yes, it follows a classic formula with characters dropping out like contestants on The Weakest Link. But like that ever-popular gameshow, it’s a formula that works — though admittedly when it comes to horrific brutality and inhuman sadism, the Creeper is not in Anne Robinson’s league. If you liked the first one, you’re gonna love this.
Half Past Dead (2003)
I enjoyed this film immensely, especially the bit that invited us to believe that convicts would rather fight to defend their prison than take an opportunity to escape. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon? Give me Seagal any time.”
Bright Young Things (2003)
The performances are excellent. If I had to single one out it would be Michael Sheen, but the whole cast are superb. Mind you, given that the actors include Sir John Mills, Peter O’Toole and Richard E Grant, what do you expect? As they’d have said in those days: “Simply divine, darling.”
Big Fish (2003)
A wonderful tale that’s superbly told.
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