INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS 1978

Poffy The Cucumber

Communist Plants in Skeletal Pants. Not the original movie, but probably the best. Director Philip Kaufman’s 1978 INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS remakes Don Siegel’s 1956 movie of the same name, from the 1955 book by Jack Finney. And it is terrifying: Jeff Goldblum’s scarecrow-skinny xylophone ribcage, Donald Sutherland’s style-less white-fro, Veronica Cartwright’s pre-ALIEN whining – oh, and some spores … Read More

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3:10 TO YUMA 2007

Poffy The Cucumber

Black hat, White hat, Gray souls… Every way of man is right in his own eyes. – Wade quoting the Book of Proverbs, 3:10 TO YUMA. Every modern Western released after Eastwood’s mighty 1992 elegy has laid hollow claim to “The best western since UNFORGIVEN.” 3:10 TO YUMA is. That’s because – like UNFORGIVEN – YUMA is not a “Western,” … Read More

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GET SMART 2008

Poffy The Cucumber

Get Dumb. And Dumber. Who wrote this crap? Would you believe…? Well, it wasn’t Mel Brooks and Buck Henry. Their Maxwell Smart (personified by Don Adams) was hilarious. As the creators-writers of the 1965 television series, GET SMART, they are listed as “creative consultants” as soon as the end credits roll. It’s as if the writers of this torpid remake … Read More

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JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH 2008

Poffy The Cucumber

Hitting Bottom. Boy’s Movie. In 3D. Serves its purpose of getting thirteen-year-old boys interested in slim blond girls with indeterminate Euro accents and tennis-ball ta-tas. Brendan Fraser has some nice ta-tas too. All that sweaty tight t-shirt adventure with the Running and Screaming and CGI completely outa control. It’s been decades since I’ve read Jules Verne’s Journey to the Center … Read More

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THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL 2008

Poffy The Cucumber

The Day Keanu’s Face Muscles Stood Still. Keanu Reeves elevates his One Facial Expression Method to new levels of expressionlessness in this wooden remake of the 1951 film. Though excellent concepts are broached in both THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL films (1951 and 2008 versions), both films are ruined by their gutless denouements, failing to follow through on their … Read More

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I AM LEGEND

Poffy The Cucumber

Will Smith Saves The World – Again… Everyone on Earth is dead – but they left the CGI running. Will Smith is the “last man on Earth,” Robert Neville, tooling through abandoned, overgrown New York City streets, hunting antelope in a red sports car. It is the near future and a plague/virus has taken down humanity – not again! – … Read More

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KING KONG 1976

Poffy The Cucumber

Ape-tastrophe! In any Ape Movie, the quality of the movie is entirely dependent on the Ape Effects: the original KING KONG (1933) was a revolution in stop-motion special effects; MIGHTY JOE YOUNG (1949) continued that legacy; 1968’s PLANET OF THE APES boasted state-of-the-art creature makeup coupled with attentive simian performances; GREYSTOKE (1984) pushed the limits of performance and makeup with … Read More

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WAR OF THE WORLDS 2005

Poffy The Cucumber

Spielberg and Cruise: Reign of the Smugs. One good thing can be said about the alien attack in WAR OF THE WORLDS – at least it achieved the mission impossible of wiping that insufferable smirk off Tom Cruise’s face. Steven Spielberg wields this remake of H.G. Wells‘ 1898 classic tale like Mel Gibson wielded his recounting of the peacenik crucified … Read More

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ALL THE KING’S MEN 2006

Poffy The Cucumber

…couldn’t put this movie together again. At least Sean Penn doesn’t use ALL THE KING’S MEN as another vehicle to showcase his talent for crying on cue. With a down-home accent that needs subtitles more desperately than Mel Gibson’s ocker in MAD MAX needed overdubbing, Penn plays Louisiana politician Willie Stark, a rambunctious gadfly who attempts to usurp power from … Read More

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ROMEO AND JULIET 1996

Poffy The Cucumber

More Comedie Than Tragedie. All I’m saying is: Leonardo DiCaprio should stop being prettier than his female co-stars. In ROMEO + JULIET, snub-nosed Claire Danes bravely steps up to out-femme Leo’s manly prettiness. And fails. Leonardo is Romeo (kinda archly poetic, no?) and Claire is his Juliet. Shakespeare‘s retelling of Ovid’s Pyramus and Thisbe is retold with creative conceptualizing and … Read More

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MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET 1994

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A Muddle-Headed Miracle. WARNING TO DIABETICS: The syrup content of MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET is so high that the surgeon general advises not to watch it, for danger of inducing diabetic neuropathy and gastroparesis. Les Mayfield (ENCINO MAN) directs this remake of the 1947 “classic,” about a Coles store Santa who claims to be “Kris Kringle” (Richard Attenborough), and is … Read More

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FUN WITH DICK AND JANE 2005

Poffy The Cucumber

Not Much Fun with Dick and Jane. To say that Adam Sandler is turning into a mediocre actor is a compliment of the highest order. To say the same thing about Jim Carrey is a tragedy for American Cinema. Not exactly a “boring” movie – but FUN WITH DICK AND JANE (remade from the 1977 movie of the same name … Read More

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KING KONG 2005

Poffy The Cucumber

Yes! We Have No Bananas! Pure entertainment. Twenty-five hairy-bottomed, big-dumb-galoot feet of it. And nothing else. Despite the ubiquitous refrain of beauty and beast subtexts and alienation metaphors and caveats against taming nature, searching for deeper meaning within this wholly implausible tale will only lead to senseless cavil and being considered the big ponce for taking it so seriously in … Read More

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JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR 2000

Poffy The Cucumber

Jesus Tapdancing Christ. Anytime one of us old codgers over 35 is exposed to a re-working of what we consider a “classic,” we approach it with trepidation, fearful our fond memories will be sullied by some upstart’s new vision. And yet…knowing that curiosity never really killed anything, we unbutton our leisure suits and expose ourselves nonetheless… On this night I … Read More

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CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN 2003

Poffy The Cucumber

Children Of The Damned. When Ashton Kutcher is the funniest thing in your movie, it’s time to re-assess everything you hold dear. CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN is an unworthy, implausible remake of a 1950 film of the same name, with parents Steve Martin and Bonnie Hunt unconvincingly helming a hornet’s nest of selfish, ill-mannered, impertinent teen and sub-teen models in … Read More

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OCEAN’S ELEVEN

Poffy The Cucumber

Whatchoo talkin ’bout, Cheadle? As the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (and every other provincial, back-slapping institution for the purveyance of “arts”) quite often does, another faux-prestigious award needs to be invented for the sole purpose of giving it to just one guy: The Most Embarrassing Fake British Accent Of All Time – awarded to Don Cheadle in … Read More

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PLANET OF THE APES 2001

Poffy The Cucumber

Monkey Pee, Monkey Poo. It’s Marky Mark’s PLANET OF THE APES! Viewing this Tim Burton 2001 remake of the 1968 Franklin J. Schaffner/Charlton Heston classic is much like visiting any given zoo: that ubiquitous whiff of feces on the air… 1st Scene: Chimpnaut blunders space-vehicle simulation, proving he’s not that smart from the outset. Marky Mark appears in shot without his characteristic … Read More

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