• RATINGS GUIDE


    An amazing film


    A very good film


    Worth the money to check out at least at a matinee


    Didn't impress me much either way


    Bad, Bad, movie


    It should go back into the shadows from whence it came!!!

TROPIC THUNDER

Well, it was neither that funny, nor that bad…At least to this still sleepy, non-morning person, who attended an early showing. All of fifteen other people were in the audience.

Problematic racial and disability ickyness, aside, it was alright.

I chuckled pretty consistently throughout, but three parts, in particular, got my loud annoying laugh, snorting included. As always, I will not divulge what those parts are, here.

That much talked-about cameo, that should have been funny, scared the crap out of me, instead….The arms and hands, y’all, the arms and the hands….*shudder* And please, a white guy hip-hop routine?…That dead horse is dust, now.

On the blackface. Downey, is as expected, very good. He brings the acting skills “A” game to the self-important white-guy playing a black guy routine. Husky voiced, bug-eyed, toughness included.

…Yes, the joke is on actors like Angelina Jolie, talking out of one side of her mouth about where the black princesses are for her little girl, but still playing The Fox and Marianne Pearl in all her whiteness. There is, however, much ickyness in translation, y’all.

The white guy-in-blackface “cool factor” that has been pushed, since we first heard about this movie, is just as jacked-up as those self-important actors Stiller lampoons. The fact that the “real black guy” did a lackluster job didn’t help matters, either (in a role lampooning taking yet another acting job from real black actors’ hands).

It’s the reason why Chappelle quit, y’all. Folks were laughing at the shuffling and not the joke that shuffling is. Such is the case, here. Most of America just ain’t there enough to get it, yet. That goes for the joke on able-bodied actors taking on special roles to Oscar accolades, as well.

I can already see many a baseball-capped college guy doing their best “Black Downey Jr.” and Simple Jack impersonations. Yuck.

So, yes there are laughs here, but what was meant to be funny gets muddled in translation. The cartoonishness of the “real” stereotypical locations and people juxtaposed with all this, doesn’t help matters.

Still, it gets the from me.

Funny counts for a lot…If only the idea had been handled by more capable hands.

PARENTS: There are graphically-depicted war scenes and effects. It’s definitely not for kiddies.

THE SISTERHOOD OF THE TRAVELING PANTS 2

I hate to say it, but Sisterhood 2 sucks, y’all. And you know how much I’ve been looking forward to it.

The first Sisterhood was seriously slept-on. It was this little gem of a film, that did almost everything right for the “real” girls, out there. From showing realistic life-challenges, to dealing with them in a smart, entertaining way, it was definitely one of my favorite chick-flicks from recent years. In an era when make-over movies *cough*housebunny*cough* pass for girl-power affirmation, that is rare indeed.

This second installment is a meandering mess of a movie. I was bored silly. The four young leads do what they can, but the material just doesn’t support them.

Everything that was great about the first film was put by the wayside in the sequel. Gone is the light humor and the refreshingly plausible resolutions to teen challenges.

In it’s place? We have a plodding series of story lines, the blandest male-leads I have seen in a good long while, unresolved plot lines, and clich├ęd, soap opera-like twists. We have “overheard gossip”, the mean girl, the love triangle, and of course, the shy-girl/cute boy storyline. None, I would mind if they were executed in a way that was at least, interesting.

The writing isn’t the only issue here. This movie is molasses slow.

Sanaa Hamri is a director I am really rooting for. She’s one of the few black female directors working in Hollywood, but she really has no clue how to do dramatic pauses (beats). They were just placed at the weirdest places in the film, stalling the already slow pace. Pants 2 could’ve easily been ninety minutes instead of the looong two hours it was, if only a few of the those awkward beats had been taken out.

And the guy pictured above? …Is a classic demonstration of the old adage ‘beauty is only skin-deep’ (Tom Wisdom, sorry man). He was bland, about as deep as puddle, and one-note. Therefore, he was eye-rollingly annoying, every time he opened his mouth, and not the least bit attractive to me.

On the good side, it was nice to see a non-asexual Asian man (Leonardo Nam) in an American film, FINALLY!! And he happened to be one of the more interesting guys in the movie.

So, I’m stuck between this and this . It was good to see the girls reunited again, but the Pants 2 let them down.

PARENTS: It’s directed at teen girls, so the issues are relevant to them, including a few that are sexual in nature. If you thought the first one was appropriate for your young people, this one should be fine too.