Joe Pantoliano

Risky Business

Year: 1983
Directed By: Paul Brickman
Written By: Paul Brickman

RYAN’S REVIEW

This is an 80s movie for the fan that wants something racier than John Hughes was capable of. Hughes of course made many incredible classics from the 80s era but they were all about as PG as you get when it comes to sexuality. This movie offers everything that he simply teased you with. Sexuality with nudity included, more prevalent profanity, and an R rating that is as fulfilling as only something suited for 18 years old and up can be.

I grew up with this movie, although watching it as an adult makes me question my father’s decision on what I was allowed to watch as an early teenager. He calls this a classic and I agree but when you get down to the nuts and bolts of the whole thing this movie is about prostitution. I’m a parent myself now and watching this movie kinda makes my skin crawl when I consider it in any context of reality. Joel’s mother comes home and is disappointed there is a crack in her precious egg. She should be much more concerned with what she doesn’t know. Which is the God only knows how many prostitutes made use of her bed, and you know the teenage would be pimp Joel didn’t bother to change the sheets!

I find the transition of Joel’s character in this movie to be the most interesting thing about the movie from start to finish. He goes from outrageously horny virgin to having the confidence of a boy who has been made a man by a woman. What guy doesn’t remember that difficult time in adolescence when we were so horny we couldn’t concentrate on anything else? So eager yet so woefully unaware of what to do and overcome by fear when and if an opportunity presents itself. I think this film does an excellent job of capturing that haunting stage of pubescence and it gives me a nostalgic memory from my own teenage years. I don’t know that turning to prostitution is an answer for any guy in that uncomfortable stage but ……different folks different strokes? (pun intended). I’d imagine Joel needed to see a doctor after having “the time of his life” because he could probably use a shot of penicillin, and if that’s all he would have been lucky.

Personally, I consider prostitution to be really disgusting. As a happily married man I have very little interest in outside activity in the female department. Even if my wife wasn’t awesome and gorgeous enough to keep me interested I can’t even fathom the idea of making life that much more complicated. Life is complicated enough right? Adding in an extra marital affair just seems too stressful to me and the last thing I want would be more stress.  However, even if there were such unusual circumstances in which I found myself in a position to do so I can’t imagine prostitution is the way to go. No matter how good the apple looks it just seems too iffy to taste what’s already had several bites taken out of it. You don’t know who took bites before you and tasting that fruit is like inviting disease into your life and household. For the overly horny teenager whose just desperate to get some my position is the same. Suck it up and deal with it like all of us do until some girl is finally willing to let you go “all the way.” Paying for sex with a woman who literally has sex for a living is just gross and dangerous.

Plus, screw around when you don’t know what you’re doing and suddenly Guido the Killer Pimp is after you and you don’t want to mess with Guido. “It’s a hard ass life for a pimp,” and they won’t hesitate to make your life hard too if they can get an upper hand on you. I think that Joe Pantoliano is awesome in the part of Guido and it’s a fun opportunity to see him at such a young age. I have always been a fan of Pantoliano because of several roles. In this film he plays a part that really was the biggest of his career for a long time. He’s been in the game for more than thirty years believe it or not and has managed to portray many memorable characters beyond Guido the Killer Pimp.

Maybe it’s just because I watched this movie at that tender age of desperation but the sexuality of Rebecca De Mornay has been fused onto me for a lifetime. I had nearly forgotten till sitting down to watch this movie for the review but it all came flooding back the minute those patio doors blew open as she undressed. Long before I sowed my wild oats I was planting them with the goddesses I saw on screen and Rebecca De Mornay in this was near the top of the list. It’s a great thing that by the time I was a late teenager DVDs had taken over. Were my dad to have any reason today to pop in his old Risky Business VHS he would undoubtedly find it perplexing that the movie started right at that scene.

It’s always interesting to look at a film from this long ago featuring Tom Cruise. Back in 1983 he still looked young, but somewhere along the way in the 90s he simply stopped aging. Cruise was 21 when he made this movie and the funny thing about his look is that it isn’t even natural. That baby faced teenage look he has going on was accomplished in an interesting way. Before shooting Cruise went through a rigorous work out routine to get real lean and then spent a few weeks eating fatty foods to gain an extra layer to give him the teenage look. I think Cruise did a great job in this movie and it stacked his resume going forward as he would build what has become a highly impressive career.

I find it very interesting how iconic this movie has been for the last 30 years. Even today references continue to the lip syncing routine in oddly feminine garb scene. Not even a month ago I saw the movie and scene referenced in the popular TV series The Goldbergs (great show). In the PC world we live in today I get a great laugh out of this movie’s continued popularity. It’s lived on when so many have been forgotten and in this PC world we live in today I find that funny cause it’s about a kid who falls into running a prostitution ring. Irony equals a joke in the natural order of things.

I have never particularly loved this movie but I have always enjoyed it, in one way or another. I was surprised when we sat down to watch it again how sucked in I got. Even Amber, who was working, found herself distracted and pulled into the movie. I think it takes a good movie to do that to you, to catch you off guard when you least suspect it. To take you on a journey through an adventure in some fictitious life. Joel reminded me of when it was like to be that age, and he did something that qualified as what all of us at that age spent far too much time thinking about. I think this is a cool 80s movie and it’s worth your time to seek out and see.

NEXT MOVIE: Road to Perdition (2002)

 

 

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Memento

Year: 2000
Directed By: Christopher Nolan
Written By: Christopher Nolan (screenplay) Jonathan Nolan (Short Story)

RYAN’S REVIEW

Some movies challenge us as viewers.  They demand more from us than the typical film and we are required to give a higher level of our concentration to them.  This isn’t something the casual film-goer will always do but for those of us that do the reward is ever more fulfilling. Some of the most entertaining films are the ones that require us to think more.   This is one of those movies; a film on a platform all by itself and unlike any other out there.  On every level it is entertaining from the story, to the performances, to the cinematography.  This was an intelligent group of people boldly doing their own thing and proving themselves to be a new generation of filmmakers with the potential to take everything to the next level.

Of course everybody knows Christopher Nolan now.  His Batman films were incredible and left an impression on nearly everyone who saw them.  Nolan is certainly one of the most talented filmmakers out there right now and he proves that each and every time he gets behind camera. He proved it with The Prestige, with Inception, and he will most certainly blow our minds again with his next film Interstellar.  This film was his second but it was his first step into doing larger things.  Something that I think makes him so successful is that he has his own team that he works with together on everything.  Looking at the credits roll for this movie I see lots of names I recognize from his other films.  This was back in 2000 and so many of these people have stayed together to work on all of Nolan’s films.  Of course there are his wife and his brother who are always with him.  Emma Thomas serving as producer and Jonathan Nolan involved in writing. Other names that popped out were Wally Pfister and John Papsidera who have both worked on most if not all of Nolan’s movies since.  Though he wasn’t involved in this film Nolan typically uses Hans Zimmer to score his films.  There are no doubt plenty of names I don’t notice because I only see these in passing. In truth I know little about these people beyond their names and job title but that’s not the point.  My whole point is that continuity among the crew goes a long way in a director’s successful career. Nolan’s talent is immense and it’s such an exciting time to be a film fan specifically because of what men like him give us to look forward to.

This film is so unique, even for Nolan.  I love how progressive and gutsy it all is.  Nolan is such a confident filmmaker and that confidence can be seen in his work.  You have to believe in what you are doing to do something this different.  Nolan is a fearless filmmaker and has been wise in believing in himself.  The way this film comes together as it progresses is like a work of magic.  It has so many layers and is so exceptional on each and every one.  The story in this movie is terrific as is the story within the story.  The character they created in Leonard is so interesting and his handicap offers such a fascinating dynamic. I love how the film comes full circle with such clarity in the end and how splendidly the two stories merge into something bigger and even more shocking. This is a great thriller and unlike any other I have ever seen.  A great film from a great director who has so much more to offer us in the future.

I am not a fan of Guy Pearce but he is so perfect for the part in this movie.  I have always said his best attribute is walking around with a lost look on his face.  I think it was The Time Machine that gave me this impression of him as an actor.  It’s what I have come to associate him with over the years and I think it’s great to see it so effectively used for a role like this.  He looks a little ridiculous with that hairdo but the lost look on his face just fits so well.  I don’t like Carrie-Anne Moss either but actually think this was one of the better performances I have seen from her. She plays a great part and pulls it off well.  Joe Pantoliano is awesome in everything and no different in this one. He’s at his best when playing the shady character and he’s in his element in this one.  The role was small but I think Mark Boone Junior is great.  He has made plenty of roles his own but as an actor I always want more of him because he has a talent you can never have enough of.

I can gush over this movie to no end but it’s the type of movie you have to see for yourself.  It took me a long time to get around to seeing this one.  For reasons I can’t remember I snubbed it when people tried to tell me it was great back in the early 2000s.  It was sometime after the success Nolan found with the Batman franchise that I finally went back and saw what I was missing.  I had missed out on something exceptional and if you have never seen this movie you have too.  It’s worth your time to go out of your way to find it and watch it.  In fact everything Nolan and his crew have done is worth your time to seek out and watch.  He has a new film coming out later this year, Interstellar, and I have every reason to think it will be another mind blowing feature from the director who has quickly become the best at blowing our minds.

AMBER’S REVIEW

This movie was incredibly intricate. Every detail was so well thought through. What kind of brain can create something like this? I have to be honest. I have seen this film before, but it’s been a while. I ran a 5k the day we watched this, so I passed out half way through. Ryan filled me in and my brain is still trying to piece all the pieces together. I really like this movie and it is well worth your time to watch it.

mementoWhen I first looked at this poster, I wasn’t that impressed, but now looking at it a little closer, I don’t think it’s that bad. It shows a few characters and includes a few necessary props that are throughout the movie. The typography of the text is a written font to mimic the handwriting that goes onto the Polaroids the main character has to take to remember things, and although it maybe clever I find it too obvious and cliché. I think there are a lot of better ways to do this poster, but this isn’t the worst way either. I really just want more out of it, because there is so much depth to the movie itself, and this really isn’t beckoning me to go watch the film.

NEXT MOVIE: Me, Myself & Irene (2000)

The Matrix

Year: 1999
Directed By: Andy and Larry Wachowski (Larry is now Lana)
Written By: Andy and Larry Wachowski

RYAN’S REVIEW

It’s such an interesting experience to watch this movie now.  I remember so clearly how it felt when I was 15 and watched it four times in the movie theater.  I remember clearly how it felt when I watched it over and over again with my brother when it came to video and I was 16.  Watching it now is so different though.  The world has changed so dramatically in the last fifteen years.  Looking back now at what was cutting edge technology in 1999 is an unusual feeling.  This franchise may have fallen apart when it came to sequels but this movie was so important to my generation.  This was our Star Wars when it first came out.  It was a film that changed the way movies were made.  The slow motion effect during action sequences was a big deal that was copied by everyone at the time.  This movie added a new special effect to the table that was utilized and mimicked on a regular basis.  The story left the door open for so many possibilities and for a few years our imaginations ran wild. We didn’t know that they would totally destroy this franchise when they continued it, but what we had seen already had blown our minds and we couldn’t hope but to expect the greatest thing ever made.  Oh how we were disappointed, we will get to the sequels in time, but for now the focus is on this film.  This film was incredible, and while there is plenty to pick apart today it was like nothing else we had ever seen in the late 90s.  It was a film that combined action, style, and philosophy.  It blew our minds and gave us something to think about after seeing it.  It also sported some of the best fight scenes, action sequences, and monologues of all time.

This movie did blow minds in when it came out in 1999.  I can LITERALLY attest to that.  As I said I saw the movie four times in the theater and it was the fourth time I saw it that something happened.  I remember it being during the scene in which Neo first dodges bullets.  On screen Neo was leaning back in an unnatural stance while bullets passed over him in slow motion.  A man sitting in the row directly in front of me and only one seat to the left suddenly stamped his foot three times and laid his head on the shoulder of the girl next to him.  He made a moaning sound and the girl looked over and started screaming. This started a commotion that at age 15 I could do nothing more than sit there and marvel at.  I had never seen such a thing happen before, the man had gone into a seizure.  Eventually paramedics came and the girlfriend had to admit to them that the two of them had dropped acid before coming in to see the film.  He was eventually wheeled out on a stretcher and I have no idea what happened after that but I will never forget it.  I have been telling the story for years and about how the special effects in this movie put that man into a seizure.  The drugs obviously played a part too but I have always thought the effects were messing with his head a bit.  Of course that’s based on the observation of a 15 year old who had never seen anything like that happen and had no scientific knowledge for the theory, but it made the movie sound better that way.  “This movie is so awesome it put that guy into a seizure!” I used to tell people in my youthful ignorance.

This wasn’t the first film made by the Wachowski brothers but it was the film that made them a household name. In truth, my knowledge of the Wachowskis is limited beyond the movies I have seen from them.  I know that one of the brothers is now a sister as Larry has become Lana.  From what I know that decision on Larry’s part was supported by her brother Andy and that’s cool.  They are still working together but are no longer listed as the Wachowski Brothers, as they were when this film was released.  Some people may take issue with the transgender change from Lana but I think any hater out there should take the time to appreciate their work despite any preconceived opinions.  I will be the first one to say they made horrible mistakes when it came to continuing this franchise but I still admire them as filmmakers.  On my to-do list is eventually reviewing one of their most recent films, Cloud Atlas. I thought that film was nothing short of amazing and should eventually change the way movies are made.  Unfortunately when it comes to that film I think it went way over the heads of too many people.  That was a problem with The Matrix as well. It was a film that went way over the heads of plenty of people but when it comes to this film people accepted that anyway because the outstanding action dazzled their eyes enough for them to not care.  I was really disappointed with the Wachowskis with their sequels to this film but Cloud Atlas restored my faith in them and I look forward to anything else they might do in the future.

I say that this movie confused people because I feel like I was explaining it to people for years.  Some people just could not grasp this concept of The Matrix.  It was a deep film and I remember hearing that there were actually college classes that focused specifically on the movie.  It combined elements of theology and philosophy and either one of those two things can sometimes be enough to confuse a casual film viewer.  I hate philosophy because I think it more or less amounts to thinking things that don’t make a damn bit of difference one way or another.  It will certainly give you plenty to think about and the term philosopher sounds really intelligent but beyond that I have never thought there was much to take from it.  Philosophers have in the past spent a great deal of time trying to determine what is and isn’t real.  We see that in this movie as Morpheus asks Neo “what is real?” What I ask you is, “what the hell does it matter?” In fact I don’t even get why there is a human resistance in this movie.  Why go to the real world when the real world sucks? What good is fighting a resistance when your resistance fighters want to go back into The Matrix? Everyone besides Cypher seems gung-ho in what they are doing but Cypher’s feelings would not be exclusive to him.  I imagine in this scenario it would be a common problem.  What’s so bad about The Matrix anyway? You don’t know you are there and you get to live a better life than what you would have outside of it.

I mentioned it so I’m going to go through some of the theological references in this movie, and please keep in mind I’m going to write this from memory so if I make a mistake feel free to correct me.  The name Neo is simply an anagram for One, as Neo is Jesus. This is obvious with his virgin birth, resurrection from death, and his being the savior for human kind.  There are other times throughout this trilogy when this correlation is clearly seen by Neo being laid down in the “Jesus pose.”  The ship that Morpheus and crew travel on is called The Nebuchadnezzar, a name that is in the Bible.  Cypher’s name was created by simply taking the L U off of Lucifer and for the cleaver viewer this was foreshadowing that he would be the traitor to the cause.  I don’t remember specifically reading this but I have to think the name of Trinity is a reference to the Holy Trinity.  Beyond that there are no doubt several I have forgotten and managed to overlook while watching the film again.  This film is deep on a level that I don’t care to put the thought into.  If you are interested in the influences behind this film and what it all means I suggest you research the matter yourself.

I thought it was a peculiar choice to cast Keanu Reeves in the lead role of this film.  Despite Speed I had never really seen him as an action star doing the kind of fights scenes this role called for.  After all, these are some of the greatest fight scenes ever filmed, incorporating a variety of different fighting styles and techniques.  Reeves did much better than I would have thought, and I liked his performance in the part.  He was not the first choice for the film because somewhere along the line I remember someone criticizing Will Smith for passing on the role.  It was before the sequels came out and in anticipation for the next two installments there was no shortage of hype.

The weakest link in this movie, in my opinion, was Carrie-Anne Moss as both an actress and a character.  Moss was never able to turn the success of this film into more opportunities for her career and I think that is because she just wasn’t that good in it.  I don’t know if it was her acting or if it was simply that her character is only there to complete the “trinity” and be a love interest for Neo.  The love between the two seems so forced. She had no chemistry with Reeves and her character is only in love with him because the Oracle told her she was supposed to be.  I had never given it any thought when I was younger but while watching the movie for this review I can’t find one reason why these two would be in love. Trinity wasn’t so bad in this one, but I think she simply started a downward spiral here.  The character is so much worse in the sequels, specifically in the third film.

The exact opposite can be said for Laurence Fishburne.  This was the greatest role he ever had and he was absolutely awesome in it.  He has a great voice that literally makes everything he says sound so wise. The Morpheus character in itself was just really cool.  So cool in fact that after ten years he was brought back for one of the big time Super Bowl ads this year.  Morpheus also had a seat at the high council table in South Park’s Imaginationland episode trilogy, because he is awesome. Joe Pantoliano may have looked silly with his bald head and facial hair in this but it takes nothing away from him as an actor.  He is great as a bad guy and I liked him as Cypher, despite his regular complaining.  Even though Cypher is a bad guy in this movie I still like him because he is the only one that seems to have any sense when it comes to fighting this war. As he said, “ignorance is bliss” because the truth behind it all is that your alternative is living in a cave and eating slimy proteins three times a day. Who really wants that anyway?

Now, to the greatest role in this movie…Hugo Weaving as Agent Smith.  Weaving had been acting for 18 years before this movie came out with little success but that all changed once people saw this.  Weaving has since graced the film industry as many different great characters but I will always think of this as his greatest role.  Agent Smith is interesting because he is simply a computer program but as we hear in his monologue to Morpheus late in the movie he has plenty of human qualities.  It’s interesting and ironic that he wants to complete his task simply because he doesn’t want to be in this world created for the humans anymore.  His classification of humans as viruses was such a compelling argument that I think it got all of our attention.  The scene in which he says these things while interrogating Morpheus is one of the best parts of the movie short of all the outstanding fight scenes we see.

This is the most significant film of this franchise and the best of the three films.  The sequels had some flashes of excitement here and there but this is the only complete film in the trilogy.  It came out right before the world changed so dramatically with the technology utilized in the film.  Both cell phones and the internet exploded after this movie came out with technological advancements and mainstream usage.  It makes looking back at the film interesting because when the film came out everything they used was top of the line.  For younger people this can be a glowing example of how quickly the world changed and where we were right before the turn of the century.

I have read recently that the Wachowskis have discussed the possibility of a new Matrix trilogy.  I can’t stress how bad of an idea I think that would be for a number of reasons.  Number one being that this movie is still great and I don’t think anything great should ever be messed with.  I also think that the bad taste the franchise left with viewers as a whole will transition into bad impressions for a new trilogy.  I think the time has passed for this franchise and I can’t stand the trend in Hollywood where instead of doing something new they simply reboot or remake.  Having said all that, I still have plenty of faith in The Wachowskis and would keep my mind open whether I think it was a good idea or not.  In closing I will just say that this movie is easily worth your time.  It will both give you something to think about and something to enjoy while you are watching it.

AMBER’S REVIEW

The first time I watched this movie I had two words. Mind. Blown. I thought: “what an interesting way to look at everyday life.” It was such a different twist on an apocalyptic story. On top of that, to make Keanu a good actor, he needs as little lines and acting period. I think he did really well in his action scenes and fighting scenes, but when he talks I just want him to shut up. The writing for the dialogue in this movie is super simplistic, and sometimes it feels dumbed down. Overall, I really like this movie, it is fun and brings back a lot of memories.

matric_poster

I actually really like this poster for The Matrix. It shows more than one character, but in a good way. They all are representations portryed from themselves, so of course they are all wearing sunglasses, even thouh it is probably night time. I like that the binary code is making up the walls in the background and that the title has become very recognizable as the Matric font. This poster is really blue and purple, which is a strk difference from the green color that takes over the movie, especially the second one. Overall I think it does a good job of alluding to the movie and getting you interested, so not bad.

NEXT MOVIE: The Matrix Reloaded (2003)

The Goonies

Year: 1985
Directed By: Richard Donner
Written By: Steven Spielberg (story) and Chris Columbus (screenplay)

RYAN’S REVIEW

What’s funny is that Amber and I didn’t plan on watching this movie tonight.  We both had bad days at work though and this movie seemed like just the thing to salvage the day. This is a feel good movie if there ever was one and it is beloved by our generation as well as others.  It’s funny and exciting with a story that can hold the interest of anyone. It’s one of those movies where a lot of talented people came together to make something great, and it will probably live on forever.

Spielberg is a kid at heart and has an incredible ability to relate to children and get the most out of them as actors.   He has been renowned for his work with children for his entire career and movies like this give him the reputation he enjoys today.  He served as Producer for this movie after writing the story for it.  He gave the directing job and screenwriting job to Richard Donner and Chris Columbus respectively. The cast was made up of mostly children but they all brought great personalities to the story.  Sean Astin was great taking on the most responsibility he had ever had acting.  He has gone on to have a fantastic career as an adult actor appearing in many memorable films including the Lord of the Rings trilogy. This was the film debut for Josh Brolin and he was great as the older brother.  I have always thought it was weird how his career remained practically dormant for the next twenty years and then he suddenly blew up and is in seemingly everything now. This movie also sports one of the many memorable roles Corey Feldman turned in as a young child actor.  I liked many of the movies he was in throughout the 80s.

I also love all three of the Fratellis and the actors that played the parts.  Joe Pantoliano is typically great in everything he does but he specifically thrives in this kind of role.  He has a villainous quality to him but can also be really light-hearted and humorous when he needs to be.  In my mind though, no matter how many memorable characters he plays, he will always be “Guido the killer pimp.” Robert Davi has a real nasty look to him that makes him great for roles playing bad guys or cops.  Anne Ramsey as Mama Fratelli was great.  She looks the part playing a wicked and intimidating woman.  She really put on a memorable performance in this movie and instilled in me a fear of older rough looking women.

This movie takes me back because it was one I fell in love with at a really young age of 5 or 6.  It’s a movie that makes us all wish we were young again.  It fills us with unrealistic desires for what our childhoods could have been and warms our hearts by inspiring our own memories from that age.  This is a great movie that is timeless and can be enjoyed by all generations.  If you have not seen it I would suggest you check it out, it is worth your time to see.

AMBER’S REVIEW

The Goonies is one of the best movies and one of those movies that almost everyone I know has seen and can quote. I can’t say a bad thing about it.

The movie poster is to the left. It isn’t one of my favorites, yet it sticks to the style of the times. I think it is very much like Steven Spieldberg to do an illustration like cover and it reminds me a lot of Indiana Jones in some ways. Check out that sweet gradient in the typography.

NEXT MOVIE: Gran Torino (2008) 

Bad Boys II

Year: 2003
Directed By: Michael Bay
Written By: Marianne Wibberley

RYAN’S REVIEW

This is a great sequel because it is exactly what an action sequel should be, a bigger and better version of the original.  The critics may have hated this movie, and yeah, maybe there are scenes that are a little too over the top and unrealistic.  The opening scene for example, the KKK bust where Smith and Martin emerge from clan robes in the middle of a rally may not be how police would actually handle the situation. What I’m saying though, is who cares, the essence of any good action movie is that the action is exciting and the stars look cool as they are kicking ass.  If the story and scenarios of the film have to be over the top and unrealistic for the sake of being badass then so be it.  When Will Smith pulls the e-brake and spins his Ferrari around while simultaneously aiming a machine gun and killing a bad guy I don’t care if it was realistic or not, I’m just glad I got to see it because it was awesome. These movies are for fun, they are for us, they’re not for the Academy.

As I have already said, this movie is a larger version of the original, so naturally it is awesome.  I actually liked Will Smith and Martin Lawrence’s back-and-forth better in the first film but they are still good the second time around.  Martin Lawrence is a little heavy on the whining here but I’ve always liked him as an actor and comedian.  Will Smith is a little heavy on the Will Smith in this movie, but that’s not really a bad thing. If you don’t know what I mean you should see Jay Pharoah do impressions of him, you can find it on YouTube. There is a great cameo by Dan Marino as himself. Joe Pantoliano is very funny again, he still has great chemistry with Smith and Martin.  I would have preferred that Smith and Martin be friends the whole film because I think it brings the story down for the characters to have drama between them, it’s more fun when the are friends. In the first movie they bickered because that was just how they were, but in this one the bicker because they are really mad at one another.

If you enjoyed the original then you have no doubt already seen this one, if not then get on with it, you won’t regret it.  I hear that there is a third film in the works and I really hope that there is.  Will Smith and Martin Lawrence both have considerably slowed down in their careers, and that is an unfortunate trend that will hopefully change.  This movie is a little long and a bit much, but is too much action ever a bad thing? It’s not a movie to watch with your kids, lots of violence and profanity, it is rated R. It’s very cool and very funny though, it’s definitely worth your time and I hope you give it a shot if you haven’t seen it.

AMBER’S REVIEW

This one, to me, is way better than the first one. It is still a movie made for men, but I thoroughly liked it. The story line was clean and relevant and I really like the car chase scene on the highway. These two guys play so well off of each other. Having recently watched a satire of Will Smith on Saturday Night Live, I laughed even harder every time I heard him yell “Whoooooa.”

I also found it hilarious that Martin Lawrence had taken Ecstasy. I think it is funny anytime a movie makes light of using drugs, when they aren’t being abused. The way he acted was perfect and super funny and I found it to be true of how anyone would act on it if they didn’t know what to expect. I really enjoy this film, I love WIll Smith and this is one of his funnier films, I feel like lately he likes the serious ones that force you to cry….(I am Legend, Pursuit of Happyness). Definitely worth watching.

NEXT MOVIE: Bad Santa (2003)

Bad Boys

Year: 1995
Directed By: Michael Bay
Written By: George Gallo

RYAN’S REVIEW

I know many people with very strong feelings about Michael Bay, and I understand their point.  His movies are generally lacking in substance and overloaded with special effects.  The way I see it though, is that really a bad thing all of the time? Don’t we sometimes need eye-popping spectacles that we don’t have to think about? I don’t like all his movies and I am against his decision to produce remakes of classic films that should be left alone, but I am still a fan on a certain limited basis. This movie is a perfect example of why I like him actually.  Bad Boys is never going to be called a classic or anything but it’s cool, it’s fun, and it’s exciting.

This was Michael Bay’s first featured film and I think he made a great movie.  He has a great imagination for action and he is also very stylish.  Style is important in any mindless action film because the stars must look cool when they are kicking ass.  Will Smith and Martin Lawrence are both very funny and have great chemistry on-screen.  I think it’s their performances, in which they improvised much of the dialogue, that save this movie from making Michael Bay’s debut film a failure. Had it gone originally as planned with Dana Carvey and Jon Lovitz in the lead roles I can assure you of this much, it wouldn’t be on my movie rack and I wouldn’t be reviewing it now. This movie almost seems like a footnote in the very successful career of Will Smith, but I think it was vital to his career.  This movie proved Will Smith could manage as an action star as the era of Schwarzenegger and Stallone came to an end.  It propelled his career in many ways and launched him into the big times. Joe Pantoliano is also very funny as the police captain, he works well with Smith and Lawerence. Tea Leoni is awful, but maybe my opinion is bias, I tend to think she is awful in everything. There are brief appearances by Michael Imperioli and Kim Coates, who I mention because I am a fan of both The Sopranos and Sons of Anarchy.

This movie is great because it’s nonstop, Will Smith and Martin Lawrence are literally either being funny, or they are kicking ass during the whole film.  Yeah you have to suffer through an awful tea leoni as the damsel in distress with her bad acting stinking up the movie, but it’s worth it in the end.  This movie is more than worth your time, in fact it’s something I think you should make a special effort to see if you haven’t already.  It’s a little vulgar if you have a problem with profanity but hence the R rating.  Movies seem to be afraid to be vulgar these days because they want the higher ticket sales that come with a PG-13 rating.  I think this is a mistake, sometimes we need vulgarity. If we can’t enjoy R rated films as adults then where is the fun in being grown up?

AMBER’S REVIEW

This is a man’s movie. I love Will Smith just as much as the next guy and I find him and Martin Lawrence extremely funny together. This is one of those thinkless movies that is just fun to watch. Sit back and enjoy the ride. I actually think the second one is my favorite, but I will talk more about that one when we get there. On another note, my step-father’s name is Mike Lowery. How is that for ironic?

NEXT MOVIE: Bad Boys II (2003)