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Teen Movie Critic

Reviews for the week starting on September 25, 1995

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MOVIES IN THEATERS

Showgirls (1995)

Showgirls
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ATTENTION! I would like to say that all the hoopla about Showgirls is a bunch of bullshit. Despite some good dance numbers, this story of a Vegas stripper (Elizabeth Berkley) who rises from lap-dance to megastar showgirl is a complete waste of time and money. Berkley and Gina Gershon as Berkley's idol, are totally wasted. Kyle Maclachlan plays the entertainment director, who turns his interest away from Gershon and towards Berkley. He's going to need to go back to acting school after this turkey.

It's basically just a high-budget tits-and-ass film. Laughable dialogue and extremely bad acting by Berkley (who did better on her TV show Saved By The Bell) could almost put this into the "So bad, it's good" category. The problem is it's far too sexist, demeaning and ugly to be put in that kind of category. Lines like "Bring me a beer BITCH!" will make this a hated film for years to come. When I went to see it in the theater this past Friday, half the people in the audience walked out on it, even though it was 40 minutes into the movie.

As for Berkley, she should stay away from the big screen. Far away!!! Her high-pitched squeals of joy and her crazy temper tantrums grow tiresome after a while. This is Rated NC-17, though it was definitely made for horny teenagers and college students, or rather, for the males in that group. If films like this keep being made in this day and age, all of Hollywood will be out of a job. Now I want to direct the attention of the teenagers who were planing to sneak in. For those of you who wanted to see it just for the tits-and-ass, I suppose this is the movie for you. Hell, considering your tastes in movies, the sexist statements made in the movie probably won't bother you one bit. But, for those of you who go to see movies to be entertained and to see if there is a message to be found, look for another movie. The only message to be found here is that doing cruel and nasty things will get you to the top.

My Rating = One Star

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MOVIES ON VIDEO

Here are three films on video and/or laserdisc.

Touch of Evil (1958)

Touch of Evil
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One of the greatest films in the history of cinema, Orson Welles Touch of Evil is right up there with his Citizen Kane. The film is an mystery-crime story, which takes place south of the border. A Mexican detective (Charlton Heston) is trying to solve the murder of a Mexican bigwig and his girlfriend. One of the suspects is a ruthless Mexican mobster, named "Uncle Joe" Grandi (Akim Tamiroff), who is the brother of a drug dealer Heston happens to be prosecuting at the moment. The plot thickens, as heston believes that the real culprit is the corrupt lawman Hank Quinlan (a towering performance by Orson Welles) who hates Mexicans with a vengeance. In the mean time, Heston's wife (Psycho's Janet Leigh) is caught in the middle when Tamiroff sends his cronies to take care of her.

The film is a stunning piece of work by actor-director Welles, and the performances are no less than brilliant. Leigh as Heston's innocent wife, is steadily pulled into something she really doesn't want to get into any deeper. Joseph Calleia, as Welles loyal partner, turns his loyalties over to Heston, after Welles is suspected of framing his wife for murder. The villains are well portrayed by Tamiroff and Welles. Tamiroff as the vengeful Grandi. Welles, as the racist Quinlan, who has an addiction to candy bars, is masterful. Heston is the only one who doesn't come off as well as the others. Would you believe Charlton Heston as a Mexican?! The cinematography is excellent, with one of the most famous opening shots in the history of cinema, a scene which introduces all the main characters in one extremely tense scene. Except for Citizen Kane, Orson Welles never made a better film than this.

My Rating = Four Stars

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Driving Miss Daisy (1989)

Driving Miss Daisy
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Based on Alfred Uhry Pulitzer-prize winning stage plays, here is a huge example of a rigged contest. I'll explain what I mean by that a little later. The story follows 25 years in the relationship between a elderly southern lady (Jessica Tandy) and her black chauffeur (Morgan Freeman), through some trying times in the South. The two come together, after Tandy has an accident with her car, and her loving son (Dan Aykroyd, in a surprising dramatic turn) hires a new driver for her. Their relationship starts out with annoyance for one another, but it soon develops into respect for one another.

Now that you know what it's about, let me explain my earlier statement. I call this an example of a rigged contest (in this case, the Academy awards), because considering the other nominees for best picture that year (Born on the Fourth of July, Field of Dreams, My Left Foot and Dead Poets Society), this was the most undeserving winner for best picture ever awarded. Even more so than Forrest Gump. The acting is all right, but I've seen better from Freeman than this gross stereotype, and Tandy was only awarded the Oscar simply because she was old and she had never won it before (other cases like this have happened with such actors as Henry Fonda in 1981 and Paul Newman in 1986). This is probably the first film that I know of that is already outdated only five or six years after it was first released.

Even though some of you didn't think Forrest Gump deserved the best picture award, at least that film will endure longer as a well-liked film than Driving Miss Daisy.

My Rating = Two Stars

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Weekend at Bernie's 2 (1993)

Weekend at Bernie's 2
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Basically just a rehash of the first film which, let's face it, wasn't exactly crying out for a sequel. Jonathan Silverman and Andrew McCarthy reprise their roles from the first film as two employees. In the first film they were invited by their boss to come to his vacation home by the beach and found him dead, killed by lethal injection. In this film, They find out that Bernie (once again played by Terry Kiser) had a fortune hidden somewhere on the Virgin Islands, and they need the help of there old buddy Bernie to find it. However, a voodoo witch has placed a strange spell on Bernie, which allows him to move and walk only when there is Caribbean music playing, so that she can find the money.

The scenery is nice, but that's the only good thing about this BOMB. It relies only on sight gags, which grows tiresome after a while, instead of keeping you in stitches. Please let this series rest in peace with Bernie.

My Rating = One Star

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