BIG NIGHT

Poffy The Cucumber

Thought for Food. Stanley Tucci outdoes himself with his directorial debut BIG NIGHT, the poignant, funny story of two Italian brothers risking it all on one feast that might save their failing Italian restaurant. Tucci is everything to BIG NIGHT. He is co-writer (with his cousin Joseph Tropiano), co-director (with Campbell Scott), and star. Even his character, Secondo, has many … Read More

THE VISIT 2015

Poffy The Cucumber

Don’t Get Old, Get Evil. Two young children visit their grandparents for the first time. And smell death. Uh, wait – that’s pretty normal. Two children visit their grandparents for the first time – and find soiled adult diapers! … Well, uh, still pretty normal. Two children visit their grandparents for the first time. And see vomiting and dementia. Still … Read More

LINCOLN

Poffy The Cucumber

When Republicans bore resemblance to the human species… A bunch of old, out-of-touch white guys babbling about slavery. The Republican Party hasn’t changed much. Well, back then, as the party of LINCOLN, they were trying to free the slaves; nowadays, they’re working to get them all back. My main question about this ambitious film is: With all the camera operators, … Read More

16 BLOCKS

Poffy The Cucumber

With Intent to Act… Has Bruce Willis been taking acting lessons? Rather than Just Another Tough Guy Infurio role, in 16 BLOCKS, Willis has put some nuanced daylight between himself and The John McClane. His detective Jack Mosley is haggard, worn-out, somber, morose, sporting a paunch (which looks suspiciously like a pillow), washing down meds with cheap whiskey, and so … Read More

THE HOAX

Poffy The Cucumber

The Barbaric Yawp of the Lunatic Fringe. In 1970, author Clifford Irving fooled all of the people some of the time when he produced the autobiography of one of the world’s most intriguing recluses, Howard Hughes. Like all great hoaxes, it eventually served him better than the truth. And like all movies “based on true stories,” we approach cautiously where … Read More

SPIDER-MAN 2

Poffy The Cucumber

Spider Sense-tingling. Grander, faster, slicker than its predecessor, director Sam Raimi’s SPIDER-MAN 2 is more action-packed, more thrill-rided, more rollercoastered than SPIDER-MAN (2002) – but though its plaudits stretch skyscraper tall, its demerits run Mariana Trench deep. Based loosely on the comicbook episode Spider-man No More, plot finds Dr. Otto Octavius (Alfred Molina, in strapping scenery-chewing mien) “tampering in God’s … Read More

WORLD TRADE CENTER

Poffy The Cucumber

A Date With Density. The pitch: Two men get trapped in a mine shaft. Nothing happens. Then they get rescued. The end. The suits harrumph: where’s the drama? The screenwriter and her agent scramble: well, we flash back to generic good times with families and watch the trapped guys banally discuss heroism and loyalty and STARSKY AND HUTCH. The suits … Read More

BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN

Poffy The Cucumber

Brokeback Mountin’: a true American Love Story (formulaic, clichéd and dull). THE DAYS OF OUR LIVES meets The Gays of Our Lives, director Ang Lee’s BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN is an ambitious yet maudlin, slightly above-average American love story. Slightly. Only American love stories have such easily-defined plot arcs; only American love stories cull the prettiest protagonists as their principals; only American … Read More