THE HOBBIT: THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG

Poffy The Cucumber

Attack of the Action Sequences. Hobbit Bilbo Baggins and the troupe of Dwarves from Erebor continue their quest through Middle Earth to reclaim the Dwarves’ homeland from the Dragon Smaug. Along the way they are attacked by Orcs, cocooned by giant spiders, imprisoned by Elves, barreled through rapids, smuggled by a boatman, sculpt a statue of gold, and ascend through … Read More

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JURASSIC PARK THE LOST WORLD

Poffy The Cucumber

Boring Roaring. Unnecessary. That’s the word that comes to mind during Steven Spielberg’s THE LOST WORLD JURASSIC PARK, the insipid followup to his mighty JURASSIC PARK (1993). In a fit of George Lucas-oid storytelling (i.e. Making It Up As He Goes Along), we are reintroduced to Hammond (Richard Attenborough, usually a paragon of filmic integrity, probably filling this pedestrian cameo … Read More

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THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE TWO TOWERS

Poffy The Cucumber

When Wizards Collide. Gandalf is SUCH a badass! Wizard against Balrog in a film opening so power-hammering it is astonishing that writer-director Peter Jackson didn’t score a cross-promotion rollercoaster ride at Universal Studios called The Falling Balrog. THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE TWO TOWERS opens at the middle of the last film, THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING (2001), as … Read More

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JURASSIC PARK III

Poffy The Cucumber

Excitement replaced by Excrement. After Charles Darwin, Richard Owen, Louis Leakey, E.O. Wilson, Stephen Jay Gould, Richard Dawkins, Robert Bakker, Jack Horner and thousands of other anthropologists and paleontologists whose names we shall sadly never know, broke their backs formulating the knowledge that allowed us to comprehend evolution and the Dinosauria… JURASSIC PARK III takes those decades of learning – … Read More

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ACE VENTURA: WHEN NATURE CALLS

Poffy The Cucumber

When Nature Calls Through Its Arse. You either like Ace Ventura or you want to entrap him in a space capsule bound for the heart of the black hole at the center of the Milky Way. If you are of the latter persuasion, don’t read on. It will only prompt you to spend inordinate amounts of money on the space … Read More

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NATIONAL TREASURE: BOOK OF SECRETS

Poffy The Cucumber

I’m going to take a Treasure Bath! For all its contrived clue-solving and annoying coincidences and tiresome car chases, and even Nicolas Cage‘s mourning face, NATIONAL TREASURE: BOOK OF SECRETS is a lot of fun. Maybe producer Jerry Bruckheimer had something to do with the fact we can hardly take a breath before the next relentless action sequence derived from … Read More

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AVPR: ALIENS VS. PREDATOR REQUIEM

Poffy The Cucumber

Requiem for a Dweeb. Hundreds of Aliens. One Predator. No actors. The splash-slogans on the DVD packaging of ALIENS VS. PREDATOR: REQUIEM scream at us louder than the Predator’s roar: “More Blood… More Guts… More Gore!” Pretty much guarantees a maximum rating of five cucumbers out of ten – if everything else is top-notch. Everything else is not. Sucking never hurt so … Read More

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THE DARK KNIGHT

Poffy The Cucumber

Do not go gentle into that good knight… Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay, Rage, rage against the dying of the light. – Dylan Thomas If Batman is the untamed world, The Joker is the unbalanced world. THE DARK KNIGHT tells us humanity lives somewhere in between. … Read More

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HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY

Poffy The Cucumber

Hell-Tilt With The Wheels Comin’ Off. PAN’S LABYRINTH smashed up against the Cantina Sequence from STAR WARS and Guillermo del Toro rode that bad boy all the way to a town called HELLBOY. In HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY, writer-director del Toro has concreted his gleaming vision, found his devil stride, piling spectacle upon wonder upon bombastic fantastic. From Mike … Read More

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INDIANA JONES AND THE KINGDOM OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL

Poffy The Cucumber

Crystal Numbskull and the Kingdom of the Buttoned Shirt. In the movie posters, his shirt isn’t unbuttoned as low as it used to be. Good call. Man-essence might have been replaced by man-boob. Indiana Jones … is back? Well… 65 year-old Harrison Ford (Henry “Indiana” Jones Jr.) and 62 year-old Steven (I’ve-got-a-golden-ticket) Spielberg and 64 year-old George (Franchise Botcher) Lucas … Read More

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ANY WHICH WAY YOU CAN

Poffy The Cucumber

ANY WHICH WAY is a “Right Turn, Clyde!” “Right turn, Clyde!” – and the orangutan’s fist shoots out the passenger window, impacting anyone dumb enough to have their face there. It’s just one of many running gags in this inexplicable, fuzzy film. ANY WHICH WAY YOU CAN (sequel to EVERY WHICH WAY BUT LOOSE) opens with an illegal street fight, … Read More

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ALIENS

Poffy The Cucumber

The Warrior/Goddess Dichotomy and the Eternal Feminine. ALIENS! Leaping, screeching, hissing, grabbing – hellish armies of H.R. Giger’s inscrutable extra-terrestrial life forms, swarming killing machines going elongated-head to jar-head with the United States Marines (Roger Ramjet Space Division, Glib Company). Writer-Director James Cameron helms this sequel to one of the landmark space/horror films of our time, ALIEN (1979). And it … Read More

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FANTASTIC FOUR: RISE OF THE SILVER SURFER

Poffy The Cucumber

More FOUR Bore. There’s something about the Fantastic Four that’s not all that fantastic: it’s called acting.Had to spin Joe Satriani’s Surfing with the Alien before spanking this review – ‘twas the only way I was gonna cyber-charge the cells after watching the soporific, yet tenuously linked FANTASTIC FOUR: RISE OF THE SILVER SURFER. As some of you 80s steel-belted … Read More

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OCEAN’S THIRTEEN

Poffy The Cucumber

Lucky Number Thirteen. Like a rehabilitated version of its two retarded brothers, OCEAN’S THIRTEEN is still eye-candy (primary colors and insatiable set dressing screams at us within the opening five minutes), it is still big band bop underscoring a lavish, hedonist production, it is still man-toys squirming their taut butts through unutterably outlandish scenarios – but this time ‘round, the … Read More

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X-MEN: THE LAST STAND

Poffy The Cucumber

X-eunt in X-asperation. Action without heart. Spectacle without logic. Brawn without brains. Director Brett Ratner balances on Bryan Singer’s shoulders, attempting to hold up the mutant world Singer so reverently rendered in X-MEN (2000) and X-MEN UNITED (2003). But he falls off – and helms X-MEN: THE LAST STAND, the third in the x-franchise, with as much reverence and talent … Read More

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2010: ODYSSEY TWO

Poffy The Cucumber

A Midget in the Footsteps of Giants. No one said it would be easy. Following in the mythic footsteps of Stanley Kubrick and equally legendary Arthur C. Clarke. Maybe it was this inimitable pedigree that gave lowly Peter Hyams the impetus to craft such a reasonably watchable sequel to 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY. A tension-filled space trek where we laugh … Read More

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OCEAN’S TWELVE

Poffy The Cucumber

“1 Louder” Than Ocean’s Eleven. Sesame Street is having an aneurysm over this movie’s slogan: “Twelve is the new Eleven.” Having nailed the formula down pat with OCEAN’S ELEVEN – ridiculously implausible action and pulp coincidences, snide and smarmy rock soundtrack (evoking a Guy Ritchie élan), smash-cuts and wobbling steadicams, overlapping, smartass dialogue, and A-List megastars glutting all 70 millimeters … Read More

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THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE RETURN OF THE KING

Poffy The Cucumber

deus ex tolkiena. Okay, tattered robes deployed? – check; multiple story lines at the ready to entwine and entangle viewers? – check; sets constructed on a budget which would’ve stamped out hunger in Ethiopia? – check; everyone smeared in poo? – check – let’s roll! Trust me, Gentle Viewer, if you’ve not seen the first two installments of this bloated, … Read More

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X2: X-MEN UNITED

Poffy The Cucumber

X-traordinary. In X2: X-MEN UNITED, the two factions of warring mutants we met in X-MEN (2000) unite against a common enemy: homo sapiens. And all genetic babbling breaks loose… The “good” mutants (the ones tagged with the X-Men epithet) are Professor X (Patrick Stewart), Cyclops, Jean Grey, Storm, Wolverine, Iceman and Rogue (joined by additional cast, Nightcrawler and Colossus); the … Read More

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