CHICAGO – If you’ve ever wondered what the difference is between a director and a producer, let “47 Ronin” explain how the hierarchy of creativity hinders the evolution of even the most straightforward-sounding pitches. “47 Ronin” is the type of samurai movie set in Japan that features native actors speaking only English, while Keanu Reeves stars as an outsider clearly plunked into the picture for stateside star power.
CHICAGO – Ryuhei Kitamura’s “No One Lives” starts off with enough grit and style that a good horror fan is likely to get their hopes up at the potential fun to come. And so the crash is even greater when that same horror fan realizes that “No One Lives” is going absolutely nowhere interesting and that the first act is its best. Kitamura has style (although it is MUCH better utilized in the underrated “Midnight Meat Train” and cult hit “Versus”) and the cast isn’t bad but the script is simply awful and the movie exists for no other reason than to highlight some nifty makeup horror effects. You can do much better.
CHICAGO – While the broadcast networks midseason continues to set records for overall incompetence and ABC’s “Zero Hour” appears to be the latest casualty (as it was pulled from this week schedule in advance of a likely cancellation), the newest attempt to revive flatlining numbers comes in the form of ABC’s “Red Widow.”
CHICAGO – “The Collection” is a very, very, very, very bad movie. It is really only watchable because it’s so bad. It’s one of those flicks that encourages talking or tweeting in the theater merely so you can make it enjoyable by laughing at it and not really with it.
CHICAGO – David Simon and Ed Burns, two of the television geniuses behind “The Wire”, turned their eyes and ears from the gang-ridden streets of Baltimore to the bullet-strewn bodies of Iraq in the incredible seven-part HBO mini-series “Generation Kill”, now available in a box set from HBO Home Video.