Showing posts from November 20, 2011


Review: The Switch Set in NY, Jennifer Aniston is somewhere in the vicinity of middle age and although a successful TV producer, is unhappily single in her personal life. Her biological clock is ticking and she has put an ad in the paper wanting a sperm donor for artificial insemination. She has a perfectly decent, if pessimistic BFF in Jason Bateman, who offers up his own sperm (but dare not confess his love for her, I might add), but in the end, sperm donor Patrick Wilson is chosen. Aniston holds herself an ‘Insemination Party’ that both Bateman and Wilson (who is married and simply doing the deed for the money) attend. Bateman gets drunk and stoned out of his gourd, and after an unfortunate accident in the bathroom (and not the kind you’re thinking), the sperm sample is lost and Bateman replaces it. With his own sample. Before long, Aniston is pregnant, and Bateman, because he was out of his mind, doesn’t tell her of the mishap because he doesn’t seem to even remember it. T

Review: Kurt Cobain- About a Son

This 2007 AJ Schnack documentary based around interviews conducted between deceased Nirvana front man (and voice of a generation) Kurt Cobain and journalist/co-producer Michael Azerrad, is a must-see for any fan of music in the 1990s, and particularly the Seattle-founded Grunge movement. Fascinating stuff, especially for someone like me who was a definite fan, but never read any interviews, articles, or books on the guy, really. It gives you a pretty good picture of who Kurt was as a human being. After hearing about his childhood, his interest in music, and ascension to superstardom, and his inability to quite get his head around any of it (or to fit in anywhere in society), I feel like I got as complete a picture as one can ever get (though Courtney Love isn’t mentioned a whole lot, nor any specifics about his Nirvana band mates). And that leads me to the film’s slight failing (aside from the limited amount of footage of the guy himself. Bizarre! We get a few badly-shot photos an


Review: The Coolangatta Gold Gruff dad Nick Tate is training his eldest son Colin Friels to take part in the title iron man race that is an insane endurance test up and down the Gold Coast coastline, and encompassing running, canoeing, and swimming. Younger son Joss McWilliam, barely earning cash as a music promoter wants in on the race too, which dad came in an agonising second in 1960. Dad doesn’t want a bar of this, Friels is the winner in the family, as he sees it, living vicariously through his favourite son. Friels, for his part, tries to be a little more supportive of baby brother, but doesn’t take him too seriously, riling McWilliam up even more. Meanwhile, mum Robyn Nevin (a most ubiquitous actor of stage and screen, both small and large) tries to keep the peace between all parties. Josephine Smulders plays the super-dedicated aspiring ballet dancer whom McWilliam is sweet on, whilst Melissa Jaffer is her teacher. Future “Family Feud” host Rob Brough (he of the golden


Review: Can’t Buy Me Love Patrick Dempsey stars as virtually invisible high school nerd Ronald Miller, who on his way to buy a telescope at the mall sees Cindy (Amanda Peterson), the popular high school hottie who happens to live next door. She’s trying to return an expensive outfit that was accidentally ruined. Ronald (who earned the money mowing lawns, including Cindy’s) steps in and offers to pay for a replacement outfit, but on one condition: She has to go out with him and be seen with him at school and on dates for a month. She reluctantly agrees, and after a rocky start Ronald’s social standing improves, and hey, even the somewhat aloof and unattainable Cindy (whom he has had a crush on for years) seems to genuinely like him. Unfortunately, popularity starts to get to Ronald’s head and he starts to alienate everyone around him. Courtney Gains and Max Perlich play Ronald’s nerdy friends, Eric Bruskotter plays a bullying jock, Seth Green is Ronald’s obnoxious younger broth

Review: Summerfield

Review: Summerfield Nick Tate is a replacement schoolteacher (the previous one has mysteriously vanished) in a remote coastal community that gives off slightly sinister vibes, and no one in town seems especially welcoming, neither children nor adult (Charles ‘Bud’ Tingwell is the one exception, as the genial town doctor). Tate becomes involved in the life of young Michelle Jarman, who lives in a gated community with her overprotective mother Elizabeth Alexander, and her moody uncle John Waters, who in turn seems fiercely protective of his sister. Tate begins to feel that someone in this close-knit family is tied into his predecessor’s disappearance. But who, and how? And why? Geraldine Turner plays Tate’s buxom, sex-starved landlady, with Max Cullen her surly husband. Exceptionally weird, unsatisfying 1977 Ken Hannam ( “Sunday Too Far Away” ) drama-mystery has a glacial pace but at least gives us some intrigue early on as we try and work out just where on Earth it’s all goi

Review: Stone

Edward Norton (with cornrows, no less) plays the title incarcerated arsonist looking to convince someone that he should be paroled. Unfortunately, his parole officer is weary Robert De Niro, a man who has seen it all and has absolutely no faith in anything, and just wants to get this case out of the way so he can begin his retirement. Stone wants to be believed, however, he wants to be heard. He’s even found some kind of spiritual enlightenment. De Niro ain’t buying it, though. He doesn’t know what he’s up to, but whatever it is, he doesn’t believe it and he just wants Stone to stop wasting his time. Meanwhile, De Niro’s marriage to deeply religious Frances Conroy is a completely loveless one. She has turned to drink, and barely seems coherent most of the time. De Niro, for his part, reads the bible with her like he’s just going through the motions. He doesn’t believe in that, either. Milla Jovovich plays Stone’s sweet-faced wife (but highly sexual) Lucetta, who seems like she would

Review: Murder By Death

Review: Murder By Death The world’s greatest detectives are invited to the mansion of eccentric Lionel Twain (famed writer Truman Capote) for a little murder-mystery fun as he locks the doors and warns everyone that a murder will take place before midnight and that one person will be the murderer, another the victim. Whoever first solves the mystery will earn one million dollars. Peter Falk plays the Sam Spade-inspired gumshoe Sam Diamond, with Eileen Brennan as his lady friend Tess (Bogey fans can call her ‘Effie’, though). Elsa Lanchester plays Miss Jessica Marbles, with Estelle Winwood as her addle-brained elderly nurse. Dame Maggie Smith and dapper David Niven play Dick and Dora Charleston, modelled after Nick and Nora Charles from “The Thin Man” series. James Coco plays pudgy, chocolate-loving Belgian detective Milo Perrier, with James Cromwell as his dopey chauffeur. Peter Sellers plays Sidney Wang, a parody of Charlie Chan. Sir Alec Guinness plays the blind butler whose