Film Shorts 


OPENING

ANIMATED WORLDS

AUTUMN IN NEW YORK

CECIL B. DEMENTED

THE CELL

CITY OF LOST CHILDREN

GODZILLA 2000

GORDON'S WAR

HARLEM IN THE THIRTIES

I WANT TO GO HOME

JIVIN' IN BE BOP

LOVE UNTO DEATH

MEDITERRANEO

MELO

ORIGINAL KINGS OF COMEDY

PROVIDENCE

SHAFT'S BIG SCORE

SHOW BOAT

TEN MINUTES TO LIVE

WONDER MAN


MOVIES & EVENTS

The Adventures of Baron Von Munchausen
Whimsical fantasy directed by Terry Gilliam about a baron (John Neville) who sails to the moon, seduces Venus, and saves a city. Co-stars Robin Williams and Eric Idle. Hollywood Theatre

The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle
Once upon a time, a badly-drawn cartoon dependent upon pained sarcasm was shown on national television. This was clearly a horrible idea, appealing only to the least ambitious adults and most awkward children, and it was quickly pulled. 30-some years later, Robert De Niro thought differently. He wanted to make a movie. Somewhere along the line, he apparently wanted to make a successful movie, implanting a desperately cute gal whose inner child (literally) cries out for indulgence. In the process, mangling together a bitterly knowing narration with third generation Disney schmaltz, they managed to make a film for nobody--confusing the tots and irritating the cultish faithful. Moose and squirrel wander through, company men, never once questioning the pace. (Jay Horton) Avalon Theatre, Bagdad Theater, Kennedy School Theatre

* Animated Worlds
A collection of world class animation, all from local artists including Jim Blashfield, Chel White, Will Vinton and Joanna Priestley! Northwest Film Center at Whitsell Auditorium

Autumn in New York
An aging playboy, Richard Gere, falls for the younger and terminally ill Winona Ryder, leaving us terminally ill in the process. Broadway Metroplex, Century Eastport 16, City Center 12, Division Street, Evergreen Parkway, Hilltop, Lake Twin Cinema, Lloyd Cinemas, Movies on TV, Oak Grove 8 Theater

* Beau Travail
Claire Denis' latest film about men in the French Foreign Legion performing rituals in the desert. Loosely based on Herman Melville's "Billy Budd." Hollywood Theatre

Big Momma's House
Martin Lawrence is back, and he's got a big old prosthetic ass. Where do I sign? Avalon Theatre

Bless the Child
Why is the fate of the universe always left to adorable six-year-old kids? Director Mace Neufeld's attempt to recapture the chilling ambiance that he produced in the The Omen is a tough row to hoe, especially with super-ho' Kim Basinger playing a recovering Catholic who, in the midst of an all-out war between good, evil, the Messiah, and the Devil, has the audacity to question her faith. Why not just worry about your nails, Kim? Still, in spite of Basinger's annoying navel gazing, there are some gripping plot twists and pretty cool special effects to boot. 82nd Avenue, City Center 12, Division Street, Evergreen Parkway, Hilltop, Lloyd Mall, Movies on TV, Oak Grove 8 Theater, Westgate

* Bottle Rocket
In the March edition of Esquire Martin Scorsese nominated Wes Anderson as the best new director in the past decade. Not easy praise to come by. Scorsese was spellbound by Anderson's clever and affectionate look at a group of would-be losers who believe themselves to be dashing robbers. It is a sublime and gripping cinematography. Laurelhurst Theater

* But I'm a Cheerleader
Director Jamie Babbitt's feature debut may be a bit forced, but Natasha Lyonne as a cheerleader thought to be lesbian, is both believable and charming. Lyonne is sent to a homosexual rehabilitation camp run by RuPaul and Cathy Moriarty, and learns the valuable lesson that sexual orientation isn't as cut and dried as one might think. (Wm. Steven Humprey) Koin Center

Cecil B. Demented
A lunatic guerilla film maker and his cronies kidnap a Hollywood starlet and force her to act in their movie. Directed by John Waters. See review this issue. Cinema 21

* The Cell
Viewed conceptually, this film is remarkable: an acutley visual journey through a serial killer's mind that is both deranged and ethereal. To achieve this, director Tarsem Duamdwar uses special effects in a unique way, one that relies not only on sophisticated, expensive technology, but also preys on your worst fears of sex, violence, and insanity--all presented in surprisingly beautiful aesthetics; Even when Killer D'Onofrio is slowly twirling out the intestines of Vince Vaughn, he does so with delicate scissors in a celestial room adorned with garish, golden decadence. The whole movies smacks of Alice in Wonderland, yet relies on the founding images of Catholicism; at one point Jennifer Lopez appears as Virgin Mary, ready to kill the evil beast with her enormous sword. Unfortunately, Lopez and her co-star Vince Vaughn remain true to the same, paper-thin characters they always play; beautiful, compassionate, out to save the world, blah, blah, blah. But the movie is undoubtedly worth seeing anyway--just think of them as background. (Katia Dunn) Broadway Metroplex, City Center 12, Division Street, Eastgate, Evergreen Parkway, Hilltop, Lloyd Cinemas, Movies on TV, Oak Grove 8 Theater, Westgate

* Chicken Run
Chicken Run is about chickens trying to escape. It is very funny and exciting; each chicken has a great sense of humor and is weird. Mel Gibson is the voice of Rocky, and Julia Sawalha (from Absolutely Fabulous) is Ginger. It all starts when Rocky the Chicken comes blasting over the fence and everybody thinks he can fly. The chickens ask him to teach them to fly but they don't make any progress. Something fishy is going on--Mrs. Tweedy (the farmer's wife) has a machine that lets the chickens go in and pies come out. They do whatever they can to resist becoming pies. (Sam Lachow & Maggie Brown) Century Eastport 16, Evergreen Parkway, Lloyd Mall, Milwaukie 3 Theater, Movies on TV, Washington Square Center

* The City of Lost Children
Hands down, one of the most visually stunning, heartbreaking, surreal films ever made. Jean-Pierre Jeunet and Marc Caro's (Delicatessen) compelling, sympathetic tale of a little girl named Miette (and other scraggly orphans) who must face a nightmarish world of creepy adults and frightening villains who have lost the ability to dream. A must-see on the big screen, especially if you're slightly tipsy. Hollywood Theatre

Coyote Ugly
Inspired by a 1997 GQ article by Liz Gilbert (who worked and met her husband at the Coyote Ugly Saloon), this Jerry Bruckheimer film replaces Gilbert the writer with Violet Sanford the song writer, and turns her story into a Horatio Alger novel set in a New York bar. Only, the Coyote Ugly Saloon is more than just a bar: It is a bar with attitude, a bar with sass. It is a wild world of ruthless, sexually empowered women bartenders. It is a subculture in itself, and one that lets Violet (Picabo Perabo), the small town girl in the big city, find herself. No surprises, not too much depth, just good old-fashioned Americana rehashed with flare (and flesh) for the modern world. (Frank Bures) Century Eastport 16, Clackamas Town Center, Division Street, Evergreen Parkway, Hilltop, Lloyd Cinemas, Milwaukie 3 Theater, Movies on TV

* Croupier
Mike Hodges' 1998 masterpiece Croupier makes a convincing case that a sleazy and specialized profession-in this case, the guy who rolls the ball and collects the chips at a roulette table--is a perfect metaphor for existential malaise. Jack (the very beautiful Clive Owen), is a wannabe London novelist with nothing to write, and no money coming in. He reluctantly takes a job as a croupier/dealer at a casino, and almost instantly becomes addicted--not to gambling, but to watching people lose. Like nearly all great films, Croupier is great specifically because of its genre trappings. It's the inevitability factor that gives the movie the power to be more than it seems. (Sean Nelson) Cinemagic

Eyes of Tammy Faye
A documentary on the rise and fall of former evangelist, druggie, and eyeliner addict, Tammy Faye Baker. Koin Center

Films on the Lawn
An outdoor film series (located in the backyard of DaVinci Arts Middle School, NE Couch between 27th and 28th) focusing on raising awareness on diverse social topics. DaVinci Middle School Lawn

Frequency
A hodgepodge about time-travel, ham-radio enthusiasm, the hazards of firefighting, baseball, mother love, and a father/son tag-team tracking down a nurse-butchering psychopath. This utterly confused film is a perfect example of Hollywood's shameless tendency to pillage the graveyard for the spare parts of its own schmaltzy genre. The result is a Frankenstein monster that bumbles and stumbles across the thin, emotional terrain of an Americanized (and therefore totally false) idea of nostalgia and redemption. (Rick Levin) Edgefield Powerstation

* Gladiator
Director Ridley Scott tramps through the standard gladiator movie plot like a tipsy party host, embracing each and every clichè like a dear old friend. War hero General Maximus (Russell Crowe) is stripped of his position by a scheming, new Caesar (Joaquin Phoenix). Escaping too late to save his family, Maximus falls into the hands of a slaver (the late Oliver Reed), and with the help of a former love and his rough-but-likable gladiator pals, seeks his revenge by finding glory within the Coliseum. Scott then uses all the technical advantages of modern film making to make the details as lavish as possible. (Tom Spurgeon) Avalon Theatre, Kiggins Theater, Laurelhurst Theater, Mt. Hood Theater, St. John's Theater

* Godzilla 2000
Forget that crappy-ass film with Matthew Broderick! This is the real Japanese-style shit! Godzilla can't get a good millennium's sleep without some asshole monster waking him up. This time a floating rock washes up which contains a UFO which also happens to contain a monster named Gora! Gora gets all in Godzilla's shit, which forces Big G to burn Gora's ass off with his atomic ray. Films don't get much more subtle than this. (Wm. Steven Humprey) 82nd Avenue, City Center 12, Division Street, Evergreen Parkway, Lloyd Mall, Movies on TV, Oak Grove 8 Theater, Washington Square Center

Gone in 60 Seconds
You've seen the trailer, now see the remake of this obscure car thief movie, which has been revamped and given the full Bruckheimer treatment (shame a bunch of good actors with massive paychecks so your crappy film has the patina of class). Big, red, fast, and loud-Kids'll love it! 82nd Avenue

Gordon's War
Paul Williams stars as a Vietnam vet who returns home to a dead wife and a city full of pushers. Time to open up a can of whup-ass! Clinton Street Theatre

Harlem in the Thirties
Take a journey through 1930's Harlem including dancers, acrobats, jazz singers and featuring Duke Ellington, Cab Calloway, and more! Clinton Street Theatre

* High Fidelity
A romantic comedy for guys: John Cusack plays the cynically introspective Rob Gordon, the owner of a small record store. For various reasons, he has shit luck with women. Basically, he's a jerk, but he's not altogether clueless about his jerkiness. He struggles and obsesses and makes lists that he thinks define his life, but he's no closer to understanding women than he was in the fifth grade--which happens to be when he got dumped for the first time. Based on the popular novel of the same name. (Kathleen Wilson) Cinemagic

The Hollow Man
Kevin Bacon stars as a scientist who discovers a serum for turning invisible. Which reminds me, a really good question to ask someone when you're just starting to date them is "Would you rather be able to fly, or turn invisible?" If they say "fly," then they're a keeper. People who wanna turn invisible are always sneaking around and getting in your shit. Never trust people who want to be invisible. Especially if it's Kevin Bacon. Century Eastport 16, City Center 12, Clackamas Town Center, Division Street, Evergreen Parkway, Hilltop, Lloyd Cinemas, Movies on TV, Oak Grove 8 Theater, Westgate

I Want to Go Home
A homage to pulp fiction, comic art, and pop culture, I Want to Go Home is the story of a comic artist trying to connect with his smarty-pants daughter, while dealing with the intellectual buffoon she worships. Winner of Best Screenplay at the Venice Film Fest. Northwest Film Center at Whitsell Auditorium

Jesus' Son
Sterling adaptation of the 1992 story collection by Denis Johnson. The '70s drug culture is the setting for Maclean's second feature (after Crush, with Marcia Gay Harden). Billy Crudup is the tirelessly sweet-hearted and soft-headed "FH" (for Fuckhead), a well-meaning junkie who wide-eye puppy-dogs his way through life and love with a lost soul named Michelle (Samantha Morton), both angel and very mortal woman; and his increasingly bizarre encounters with a menagerie of lost souls, all of whom soon agree he's earned his nickname. With Denis Leary, Dennis Hopper, and Holly Hunter. (Ray Pride) Laurelhurst Theater

Jivin' in Be Bop
A Bop classic starring Dizzy Gillespie in this singing and dancing all-black revue. Clinton Street Theatre

The Kid
It's a good idea to come in about 10 minutes late to this movie. I did, and consequently I held on to a small hope throughout that I missed the beginning part that made sense of Bruce Willis hanging out with a little kid during his power lunches with rock stars in LA. Without this hope, I probably would have left the theater half way through, after the 100th scene of Bruce and the kid bonding over yet another of grandma's chocolate milkshakes, a dog named Chester, and a shared I'm-so-glad-we're-both-from-a-dysfunctional-family sentiment. Unfortunately, the only thing that happened by the end was that a 75-year-old Bruce Willis shows up to tell Bruce the first and Bruce the second not to worry, because he eventually grows up and gets the girl, the plane, and the dog. Too bad he still played a painfully shallow character in a painfully boring movie. Century Eastport 16, Division Street, Lloyd Mall, Movies on TV, Tigard-Joy Theater, Washington Square Center

Love Unto Death
Simon suffers a fatal collapse, but mysteriously awakens to re-experience the love he shared with Elisabeth. Complications ensue when he experiences a new-found spirituality and the nagging feeling that he may have never died at all. Northwest Film Center at Whitsell Auditorium

Mediterraneo
It's World War II, and eight virile, Italian soldiers are stuck on a small Greek island. Luckily, they have more than enough sun, food and luscious villagers to go around. Winner of the 1991 Best Foreign Film award. Fifth Avenue Cinema

Melo
In this exhaustively interesting film, director Alain Resnais takes an overly melodramatic play from the '20s and restages it using over the top Art Deco sets and performances. Northwest Film Center at Whitsell Auditorium

* Mission: Impossible 2
I loved this movie. I loved the vertiginous helicopter swoops as Tom Cruise scales an impossibly sheer cliff to receive his impossible mission. I loved the profligate back flips in the fight choreography as he takes out villain after glass-jawed villain. I loved the preposterous motorcycle chase/joust. I loved the human touches, too: the love triangle set against the backdrop of global intrigue; the lascivious slo-mo close-ups of Thandie Newton; the villain's Scots accent. But most of all, I loved the giddy sense of hyperbole and spectacle that coursed through the whole enterprise. It may not last too long after the credits roll, but pleasures like this aren't meant to. Otherwise, they wouldn't need to make part three. (Sean Nelson) Avalon Theatre, Bagdad Theater, Kennedy School Theatre, Kiggins Theater, Laurelhurst Theater, Mt. Hood Theater

Nutty Professor II: The Klumps
Eddie Murphy returns (Why? Why? WHY??) as Sherman Klump in this sequel to the remake of the Jerry Lewis classic. This time, the apparently brainwashed Janet Jackson is pulled into the mire as Sherman's scientist girlfriend who helps him defeat his alter ego, the ultra-suave Buddy Love. 82nd Avenue, City Center 12, Division Street, Evergreen Parkway, Hilltop, Lloyd Cinemas, Movies on TV, Oak Grove 8 Theater, St. John's Theater

The Original Kings of Comedy
Another of Spike Lee's so-called "jointz," this one being a documentary which shows stand-up comics Steve Harvey, Cedric the Entertainer, D.L. Hughley, and Bernie Mac in action. Century Eastport 16, City Center 12, Division Street, Lloyd Mall

The Patriot
Okay, remember that episode of The Simpsons where Mel Gibson remade Mr. Smith Goes to Washington and ended up impaling the President on a flagpole or some such silliness? Well, now he's gone and made a three-hour movie that's just like that, but without the irony or humor. It's set in a colonial America where slaves and owners get along pretty darn well, the British are a bunch of baby-killing, dog-kicking hooligans, and the one French guy around makes Gerard Depardieu sound like Peter Jennings (don't worry, there's no sign of the Native Americans in this heartwarming saga). Did I mention that the movie justifies killing wounded soldiers and teaching your kids to fight in war, as long as it's for something you really believe in? And have I gotten around the sheer pomposity and lack of anything resembling subtlety in the film? And another thing--hey, leggo, I'm not done yet! There's this part where Mel-- (Marc Mohan) Eastgate, Evergreen Parkway, Movies on TV

A Perfect Storm
Plot: Fishermen fight storm in hopes of getting home to some pussy. Protagonists: Marky Mark, Dr. Ross, Happy's competitor in Happy Gilmore, a few guys who are in every other movie, some no-names. Villains: Hurricane Grace, backed by two other vengeful storms. The money-grubbing boat owner. Perks: Awesome special effects: 50-foot sea swells, water rescues, hurricane clouds etc. Downers: Canned dialogue, excessive machismo, totally stupid ending. Recommendation: If you're looking for a marijuana freak-out, smoke some and head to this flick. If you're looking for an Academy Award Nominee, forget it. (Katie Shimer) Century Eastport 16, City Center 12, Evergreen Parkway, Milwaukie 3 Theater, Movie House, Movies on TV, Tigard-Joy Theater, Washington Square Center

Providence
Alain Resnais' first film in English tells the story of an aging novelist working on his last novel involving members of his own family. During a drunken night of writing he reinvents all of his characters, and comes to terms with his guilt and anxieties. Northwest Film Center at Whitsell Auditorium

The Replacements
A comedy based on the 1987 pro football strike, starring Keanu Reeves as a scabby (sorry) scab quarterback. Century Eastport 16, City Center 12, Clackamas Town Center, Division Street, Evergreen Parkway, Hilltop, Lloyd Cinemas, Movies on TV, Oak Grove 8 Theater

Saving Grace
We've seen this movie before: A British fishing village, a lot of friendly villagers, the local pub, and a big plan that involves flouting the law in a relatively benign way but leads to an extended situation comedy. In Saving Grace, the situation involves a widowed middle-aged woman who cultivates pot to escape financial ruin. The town turns a blind eye because they love her dearly. She travels to London to sell her stash (phenomenal amounts of high-grade bud) and the plan falls apart. Before it's over, the movie, too, falls apart. This is a cute, light comedy with the humor based on contrast--a nice woman selling drugs, a responsible hippie dealer who has to pick his daughter up at flute lessons before Dungeons and Dragons night, and a career criminal who is nothing but kind. (Monica Drake) 82nd Avenue, City Center 12, Koin Center

Scary Movie
Though I can't say Scary Movie was particularly witty, or even clever, the cast performs their over-the-top slapstick with such good-natured intentions, it's hard not to be swept up in the fun. Sure, there are the requisite off-color jokes directed at gays, potheads, teen sex, and the mentally challenged, but unlike the Farrelly brothers (Something About Mary, Kingpin), Wayans delivers punchlines as a nudge in the ribs rather than a slap across the face. (Wm. Steven Humprey) 82nd Avenue, Lloyd Mall, Movies on TV, Washington Square Center

* Shaft
Who's the black private dick who's a sex machine to all the chicks? SHAFT! You damn right. Who is the man who would risk his neck for a brother-man? SHAFT! Right on. He's a complicated man, but no one understands him like his wooooo-man. JOHN SHAFT! Can you dig it? Laurelhurst Theater

* Shaft's Big Score
Richard Roundtree stars in this teriffic sequel to Shaft. Clinton Street Theatre

* Show Boat
Jerome Kern's classic musical comes to the screen starring Paul Robeson, Helen Morgan, and Hattie McDaniel. Clinton Street Theatre

SHOWER
Entertaining if sometimes strained men-must-honor-their-fathers sentiment. It's the story of an ambitious young man who leaves for the Shenzen economic development region, leaving his father to run his bathhouse, along with a retarded brother, in dilapidated Beijing. Koin Center

Space Cowboys
Three old retired Air Force pilots want one last ride into outer space. Christ! Isn't it bad enough that these old farts always get the beautiful young chicks in the movies? And now they want to go into space, too? Forget it, Grandpa! It's off to the nursing home for you! Broadway Metroplex, Century Eastport 16, City Center 12, Division Street, Evergreen Parkway, Hilltop, Lloyd Mall, Movies on TV, Oak Grove 8 Theater, Westgate

Sunshine
What says "sunshine" more perfectly than the history of Hungarian Jews in the 20th century? And who says "sunshine" more beautifully than Ralph Fiennes? The irrepressible Fiennes vieux takes on three sequential roles in this epic (that's one hour per role) account of one poor family's travails through three generations of Europe's now famous anti-Semitic hi-jinx. A total downer. Koin Center

Ten Minutes to Live
One of the best films from prolific black director, Oscar Micheaux. Clinton Street Theatre

Titan A.E.
A new animated feature from the Bluth studios. The Earth has been blown to shit, and it's up to a cocky, smart-mouthed teenager to find a spaceship filled with survivors and lead them to a new Earth (presumably one that doesn't have fuck-wit cartoons like this one). Voice characterizations by Matt Damon, Drew Barrymore and ... Tone Loc?!? Waitasecond, we take it all back! Avalon Theatre

U-571
One of the most important turning points in World War II was the Allied capture of the German code machine Enigma. U-571 is an attempt to show us modern folks what this dramatic event must have been like. The only thing not historically accurate is the damn story. A British destroyer was responsible for capturing the machine, not Matthew McConaughey! Better you should watch Das Boot. (Juan-Carlos Rodriguez) Edgefield Powerstation

* The Virgin Suicides
The most consistent element of The Virgin Suicides is a steady stream of images that echo the feminine-hygiene commercials of the 1970s. Considering the material--five teenage sisters growing up in a repressive home and headed for funerals rather than graduations-the lightness of touch is surprising. But to juxtapose suicide with buoyant innocence might be uniquely appropriate; if the film has a message, it seems to be that a mythologized purity of youth can't survive into adulthood. (Monica Drake) Laurelhurst Theater, Mission Theater

What Lies Beneath
It's official! Director Robert Zemeckis (Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Forrest Gump) is a washed-up hack. In this latest Sixth Sense ripoff, Zemeckis doesn't even bother trying to come up with any new ideas to bring to the screen, choosing instead to ape what Brian DePalma has been doing for years-aping Alfred Hitchcock. (Wm. Steven Humprey) Broadway Metroplex, Century Eastport 16, City Center 12, Clackamas Town Center, Division Street, Evergreen Parkway, Hilltop, Lake Twin Cinema, Lloyd Cinemas, Moreland Theater, Movies on TV, Westgate

X-Men
This movie is all fine and dandy, but there's one area where I got beef: Where the Hell is Psylocke? City Center 12, Clackamas Town Center, Division Street, Eastgate, Evergreen Parkway, Lloyd Cinemas, Milwaukie 3 Theater, St. John's Theater

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