Tag Archives: Steve Buscemi

Pulp Fiction: Great Vengeance and Furious Anger

YOU WON’T KNOW THE FACTS UNTIL YOU’VE SEEN THE FICTION.  A few weeks before this year’s Cannes festival, where one of the most talked-about events will be Quentin Tarantino’s return with Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, I took the chance to revisit the film that really made his career. In 2019, there’s only one … Continue reading Pulp Fiction: Great Vengeance and Furious Anger

Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation

FAMILY VACATION. IT WILL SUCK THE LIFE OUT OF YOU.  Mavis books a cruise for Dracula and the whole gang; after reluctantly boarding the ship, the old vampire falls head over heels for its human captain. The third chapter introduces new environs for the gang, which is a good idea. There’s a lot to like … Continue reading Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation

The Week Of

7 DAYS. 2 FAMILIES. NO BACKING OUT.  With one week to go, Kenny Lustig (Adam Sandler) is desperately trying to get everything organized before his daughter’s wedding, including making sure both families’ constant demands are met. Several former Saturday Night Live talents (including writer Robert Smigel in his directing debut) gathered for this overlong comedy … Continue reading The Week Of

The Death of Stalin

EVERYBODY WANTS A PIECE.  Moscow, 1953; the sudden death of the all-powerful Joseph Stalin sets off a panic among those closest to him. Based on a French graphic novel, this comedy takes real-life events and turns them into an absurd, icy farce. Fans of the director’s TV shows (The Thick of It, Veep) and movie … Continue reading The Death of Stalin

Grown Ups 2

THEY’LL DO ANYTHING FOR THEIR FAMILIES… EXCEPT GROW UP. The original had these characters on a holiday trip, but this sequel lets us just follow their small-town lives at home. The idea is to say something about the need to keep a childhood sensibility while also trying to be a role model to your children… … Continue reading Grown Ups 2

Con Air

ONE WRONG FLIGHT CAN RUIN YOUR WHOLE DAY. Cameron Poe (Nicolas Cage), who’s about to be released from prison, is transported on an airplane carrying some of the nation’s worst criminals; in midair, the plane is hijacked by a group of them. Another bombastic action movie that attracted huge audiences just like The Rock (1996). … Continue reading Con Air

28 Days

THE LIFE OF THE PARTY… BEFORE SHE GOT A LIFE.  After spectacularly ruining her sister’s wedding, writer Gwen Cummings (Sandra Bullock) chooses 28 days in rehab rather than going to prison… but she has no intention of taking it seriously. A more earnest drama from Betty Thomas than we’re used to, but still with a … Continue reading 28 Days

Transformers: The Last Knight

RETHINK YOUR HEROES. Optimus Prime and Megatron are long gone, but new Transformers keep coming back to Earth; Cade Yeager (Mark Wahlberg) finds new allies in his quest to learn why. The fifth and worst of the franchise (so far) relies on a lot of comedy that falls flat (including a butler bot voiced by … Continue reading Transformers: The Last Knight

The Ridiculous 6

“White Knife” (Adam Sandler), who’s been raised by indians, goes on a quest to save his kidnapped father (Nick Nolte), and runs into one peculiar man after another who turn out to be his brothers… The first movie in a four-picture deal that Sandler made with Netflix was released straight to the streaming service. This … Continue reading The Ridiculous 6

Hotel Transylvania 2

DRAC’S PACK IS BACK. Mavis and Jonathan are raising a little boy, but grandpa Dracula worries about him not growing fangs… The sequel moves a few years into the future and sends the Count and his monster buddies on an adventure (behind Mavis and Jonathan’s backs) to try to bring out the child’s inner vampire. … Continue reading Hotel Transylvania 2

The Big Lebowski

THEY FIGURED HE WAS A LAZY TIME WASTING SLACKER. THEY WERE RIGHT. L.A. slacker Jeffrey Lebowski (Jeff Bridges) goes to see a millionaire who has the same name as him to get compensation after an unfortunate encounter with two thugs, but is drawn into a kidnapping case… The Coen Brothers’ attempt to have a little … Continue reading The Big Lebowski

The Cobbler

SAVING THE NEIGHBORHOOD ONE SOLE AT A TIME. A Lower East Side cobbler (Adam Sandler) discovers that when he uses his father’s old stitching machine and tries on the customer’s shoes, he literally becomes this person. After making several critically hailed drama-comedies, director Tom McCarthy hit a brick wall with this fantasy, maybe because he … Continue reading The Cobbler

Hotel Transylvania

WHERE MONSTERS GO TO GET AWAY FROM IT ALL.  Count Dracula has built a luxurious hotel in Transylvania to serve as a getaway for the monsters of the world… and as a way to protect his daughter from mankind. Assembling all the familiar monsters for an animated comedy is not a novel idea (this one … Continue reading Hotel Transylvania