INVICTUS

Poffy The Cucumber

Pigskin Parable. Morgan Freeman gets South Africa to cheer together in a funny accent. INVICTUS follows South African president Nelson Mandela (Freeman) in 1995 as he fanatically throws his support behind the national rugby team, the Springboks, using them as a symbol to unify his nation riven by apartheid. It was a long shot, to be sure; he placed his … Read More

THE KARATE KID

Poffy The Cucumber

Wax On, Whacks Off. A bean stem moves to a new school in Los Angeles and proceeds to take regular beatings from the school bullies for sniffing around the head bully’s ex-girl. He takes karate lessons from that guy from HAPPY DAYS – karate not for philosophy or exercise or disciplinem but to beat up the bullies. Two wrongs make … Read More

STEP INTO LIQUID

Poffy The Cucumber

Liquid Assets. Surfing is not a matter of life and death… It’s more important than that. — surfer’s credo. STEP INTO LIQUID is one helluva surfing documentary – and we never once hear the words “dude” or “brah”! And writer-director Dana Brown‘s tribute to board-dom is not just an esoteric in-gag for surfers. It embraces every one of us citizens … Read More

BIG FAN

Poffy The Cucumber

Drama is Easy, Comedy is Hard. I was not a fan of Patton Oswalt as a comedian. It took his remarkable dramatic performance in this movie to make me take a second look at his comedy. Now, I’m a big fan… (Is that good or bad?…) Oswalt plays Paul Aufiero, the eponymous BIG FAN of the New York Giants, whose … Read More

MILLION DOLLAR BABY

Poffy The Cucumber

Punch drunk love. Clint Eastwood‘s magnificent tone-poem of determination, redemption, salvation, loyalty, guilt… oh, and there’s some boxing and stuff… MILLION DOLLAR BABY is as much a “boxing movie” as UNFORGIVEN is a “cowboy movie.” That is to say, not at all. (Simpletons: “Say wha–?”) Sure, Clint plays a boxing trainer, Frankie Dunn, in a boxing gym, surrounded by boxers … Read More

BLADES OF GLORY

Poffy The Cucumber

On thin ice. How much gayer can BLADES OF GLORY possibly be? Answer: None more gay. The words ‘Will Ferrell’ and ‘professional sports’ have no reason to be in the same sentence together. Somehow they keep happening. In BLADES OF GLORY, Ferrell is ice skating champion Chazz Michael Michaels, whose raunchy routines on the ice earned him the moniker “skating’s … Read More

CHARIOTS OF FIRE

Poffy The Cucumber

The Race Between Religion and Spirit. Ah yes, running in slow motion. We’ve all done it. To Vangelis’s music from CHARIOTS OF FIRE. British film, written by Colin Welland, directed by Hugh Hudson, nominated for 7 Academy Awards, winning 4 (including Best Picture). CHARIOTS OF FIRE is based loosely on two real life British runners in the 1924 Paris Olympics, … Read More

POINT BREAK

Poffy The Cucumber

Keanu and Patrick’s Excellent Adventure. Dudes, dial the overacting down to a 7. In POINT BREAK, Patrick Swayze is Bodhi, a surfing bankrobber – or is that a bankrobbing surfer? – on the Los Angeles coast. Keanu Reeves is FBI undercover agent, Johnny Utah (I know, you can’t even think that name without overacting), hot on the tight tail of … Read More

THE FOOT FIST WAY

Poffy The Cucumber

The Foot Mouth In. FOOT FIST WAY is the literal English translation of Tae Kwon Do. And the ancient Tibetan translation is Not Quite Comedy. Produced by Will Ferrell and Adam McKay, Danny McBride’s THE FOOT FIST WAY is an uneven bid at indie cult, as it explores themes of narcissism and self-esteem, filled with non-sequitur characters, bad actors, and … Read More

THE WRESTLER

Poffy The Cucumber

Emotional Pounding. Well I’m frustrated, outdated, I really wanna be over-rated. I’m a finder and I’m a keeper; I’m not a loser and I ain’t no weeper. I got the boys to make a noise Won’t ever let up – Hope it annoys you! Join the pack, feel the crack! Well now you’re here – There’s no way back! — … Read More

RUN FATBOY RUN

Poffy The Cucumber

Running Gag. I have a newfound respect for that unfunny dork, David Schwimmer, after RUN FATBOY RUN. Schwimmer directs Simon Pegg as Dennis, a man who ran from his pregnant bride at the altar five years ago and now decides to win her back by beating her current boyfriend at his own game – marathon running. The plot only seems … Read More

INVINCIBLE

Poffy The Cucumber

Vince-ible. …really wasn’t all that good a movie – but he looked hot in it. — female viewer. Pretty much sums up the Mark Wahlberg vehicle, INVINCIBLE. Written like a Runaway Cliché by Brad Gann and directed well by Ericson Core, INVINCIBLE is one of those “Inspired by a True Story” films that is itself geared to inspire. Grimace. Though … Read More

ROCKY BALBOA

Poffy The Cucumber

Rocky LX: Grandpa’s Revenge. Something old (Stallone), something new (this film), something borrowed (the script from ROCKY), something blue (Talia Shire, excised from this story for dramatic impact and watching from the ropes as ROCKY BALBOA garners accolades as the best Rocky movie since ROCKY). Whilst working in one mediocre/forgotten/unseen film after another, Sylvester Stallone must have champed at the … Read More

NACHO LIBRE

Poffy The Cucumber

Lotsa Lucha, Lessa Libre. Apparently, wrestling IS real. A body-shaved Jack Black, squeezing his scrote into a sky-blue leotard and wrestling as a Mexican luchador by night whilst tending orphans during the day as a monk, must have sounded good on paper… Greenlighting the writers and director of quirky hit NAPOLEON DYNAMITE (Jared and Jerusha Hess) would have also been … Read More

KICKING AND SCREAMING

Poffy The Cucumber

Aiming Low, Scoring Lower. KICKING AND SCREAMING is simply a Disney Message waiting to happen. Phil Weston (Will Ferrell) coaches a little league soccer team of shiftless misfits against his super-competitive dad, Buck (Robert Duvall), whose team is top dog. As counter-intuitive as it may seem in pitting Duvall against Ferrell as rival coaches, think how absolutely ludicrous it is … Read More

DODGEBALL: A TRUE UNDERDOG STORY

Poffy The Cucumber

DODGEBALL grabs its nuts by the balls. Ben Stiller‘s best roles have been the few that have almost burst his carotid artery through certifiably asinine overacting. (To date, that would only count MYSTERY MEN, ZOOLANDER, and cameos in ANCHORMAN and THE CABLE GUY – add DODGEBALL to that short list.) His early 90s comedy series, THE BEN STILLER SHOW, though … Read More

ACE VENTURA PET DETECTIVE

Poffy The Cucumber

When Over-The-Top is Under-Achieving. Alllrighty then… Like a ballistic missile launched from the irreverent camp of IN LIVING COLOR, (of which he was the odd-white-man-out alumnus), Jim Carrey‘s second-ever leading role as the eponymous ACE VENTURA: PET DETECTIVE remains a watershed performance of mega-ultra-outré singularity. The plot of the singularly incongruous Pet Detective (roving rampant amidst the real police department’s investigations) recovering … Read More

DRAGON: THE BRUCE LEE STORY

Poffy The Cucumber

Jeet Kune Don’t. Bruce Lee was an artisan, an innovator, an indomitable warrior, a genius. Inspiring many to create tributes to him. It unfortunately does not follow that those inspired to create these tributes are creative enough or qualified enough to do those tributes justice. Such is the case with DRAGON: THE BRUCE LEE STORY. Not really a story about … Read More