Lucky Number Slevin (2006):
Lucky Number Slevin is a gangster picture about a sap who is in
the wrong place at the wrong time. Slevin (Josh Hartnett) is
really down on his luck, having recently lost his girl, his
apartment and his job. A visit to his old friend Nick in New York
seems like just the medicine he needs, except that when he arrives
in Nick's neighborhood he is immediately mugged, and then Nick is
not even in the apartment where he should have been. Some nasty
gangsters show up and, since the mugger stole Slevin's wallet,
cannot be convinced that Slevin is not Nick.
His luck is going to get even worse.
It seems that ol' Nick had built up some debts with the kind of
men that one should not owe money to. Nick has skipped town,
leaving Slevin to take the rap for him. Worst of all, Nick was in
debt to two rival gangsters (Morgan Freeman and Gandhi ... er ...
SIR Gandhi), and they both have ugly plans for him. The matter is
further complicated by the presence of a mysterious hit man (Bruce
Willis), and a cop who has all the gangsters under surveillance.
When I saw the trailer for this film I was convinced that I was
going to love it. It seemed to be The Usual Suspects with snappier
patter. Great combination. I love jaunty banter, and Suspects is
one of my favorite films. But only about half of the American
reviews were positive, and the British reviews were weak
across-the-board. When I saw the reviews, I
figured it was just the type of film that critics always underappreciate. Even Suspects itself received only two stars from
Sigh. I'm sad to report that the critics were right, and I was
hornswaggled by the trailer. Lucky Number Slevin has some great
ideas and some great moments, and it is like The Usual Suspects in
more ways than I first suspected, but it is quite derivative of
both Suspects and Pulp Fiction, the resolution is disappointingly
predictable, and it's complicated without really being complex.
The characters are the usual thinly-drawn eccentrics found in this
genre, giving the film the quirkiness of Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, but
without the heart and depth. The violence is not particularly
creative, and when the script does try to exercise a little imagination it
normally comes out too implausible for all but the most credulous.
Worst of all, the dialogue in most of the film is just the
conventional and familiar kinds of talk that we now see in just
about every gangster film. Slevin, the Josh Hartnett character,
did have some good exchanges, but they are almost all in the
It has a good cast of top-notch pros, and it's a cool enough
movie to offer a pleasant watch if you like the kind of film where
nothing is as it seems. I do like that kind of movie, and I never
considered reaching for the pause or fast-forward buttons, but
it's not the film I hoped it would be, not that great film to plan
your evening around.
On the other hand,
although the film got so-so reviews and did a mediocre $22 million
at the box office, it has developed a fairly good following. Many
people like it as much as I thought I would, and it rates a solid, near-great
7.6 at IMDb.
Bottom line: Not genius, but a solid C on our scale.
This is a scene worth watching
|Lucy Liu (zipped
.wmv). This one is not worth the download. It
is a waste of time. If you've looked at the collage below,
you've seen it "all," which is to say "just about
The Sun Online - Bizarre: Just how Lo can
lazy Lindsay go?
(See the uncensored picture in the next link down)
Yet another public appearance of Lindsay
Lohan's shaved pussy
Illuminated Clothes and Costumes By
"Aerial Photography of the U.S. featuring
New England, Florida, California, Caribbean, and National
Satellite photo of lower Manhattan on
Bad news for Yankee haters: Godzilla is
back, while Jeter and Abreu are hotter than pistols
- Matsui went four for four with a
walk, Jeter got on base every time up, and Abreu batted in six
runs in one inning!
Something Awful: Motivational Posters for
- "MONOLOGUING: Because they will never
know how weak and pitiful they are unless you tell them!"
"Borat" Toronto's favorite film
This week's theater count
- Black Dahlia - 2000 theaters
- Everyone's Hero - 2700
- Gridiron Gang - 3200
- Last Kiss - 1100
- Artie Lange's Beer League - 164
- The Guardian - 700 in a one-day sneak
ROTTEN TOMATOES: Movies Opening this week
- No reviews yet for Gridiron Gang or
- The Black Dahlia, DePalma's new film,
- The Last Kiss, Zach Braff in a
melodramedy about turning 30, a remake of a 2001 Italian film,
60% positive reviews. There were, however, some VERY harsh
negatives. Edward Douglas (The Weekend Warrior) has the best
lines: "A lot of magazines have called Braff the voice of his
generation, which I guess is everyone between 20 and 30
something, and if that’s the case, then they really must be
pretty whiny. For the most part, you should bring a barf bag
and a razor blade, because you’ll need one or both by the time
you’re done with this"
The Weekend Warrior's box office analysis
for the upcoming weekend
- Quick summary: new releases take top
four spots in a weekend better than last week, but still weak.
Join the mile high club in a Piper - Mile
This is a real headline. Honest.
"Barbara Walters claims dog talked to her"
A (really boring) clip from Haven, the new
Orlando Bloom thriller
Female Heads of State: Hot or Not?
- "Are you a female head of state?
Register to upload your photo and profile!"
Colbert explains why George Allen's version
of the amendment is SO much better than the other guy's
Daily Show: President's Stages of Grief
- Bush's stages of grief over 9/11 are:
Denial, Anger, Anger, Anger, Hanukkah, Acceptance, Denial.
The celebrities who are ripest for
Luc Besson is leaving the movie business
The best look back at 9/11:
This is the first show that Jon Stewart did
from New York after the 9/11 tragedy.
Report from Toronto:
Christopher Guest's new film takes a jab at
Check out the new board for
Monopoly Here and Now.
- The Boardwalk has been replaced by
Times Square, the railroads are replaced by airports, and
other valuable properties include Disney World, Waikiki Beach,
Fenway Park, South Beach, The White House, etc
"Bush Vows to Google Bin Laden"
... Enlists World's Most Powerful Search Engine in Hunt for
A review of the script for Kashmir!
Two trailers and four clips from Right At
- After multiple dirty bombs are
detonated, spreading deadly toxic ash across Los Angeles, Brad
(Rory Cochrane) inadvertently quarantines his wife, Lexi (Mary
McCormack) outside their new home by safely sealing himself
inside. With the city under siege and Martial Law in affect,
Brad and Lexi struggle to survive with little supply, limited
time and no information—all the while separated by thin doors
and thinner sheets of plastic. When "help" finally does
arrive, it appears to be anything but.
Lots of material on Pan's Labyrinth.
- See the trailer on the front page.
See the ComicCon reel by entering the site and clicking
Eight clips from The Black Dahlia
"The BBC has voiced regret over a spoof pop
video making light of the conflicts in the Middle East, which
was made as a joke by London news staff but leaked to a
The Path to 9/11: Deleted Scenes From ABC's
Fair & Balanced Docu-Drama (WHITEHOUSE.ORG)
- "Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky
sprawl naked across the Old Resolute desk, feeding each other
glazed Dunkin' Donuts Munchkins from an enormous crystal
- "Right on! The only thing that would
make me happier than you doing that thing with your big sloppy
Labrador tongue would be if Osama bin Laden blew up some
fucking New Yorkers just as I'm about to shoot a love missile
into the back of your throat!"
Baseball comeback of the year? You can make
a case for Nomar or Beltran or others, but I vote for The Big
- Thomas's lifetime slugging average is
.567. He's currently slugging .566. His lifetime OPS is a
lofty .982. He's currently at .962. In other words, he's a
Hall of Famer now playing at his typical level again.
- He has currently homered in six
- His salary? $500,000. He's 38 years
old, coming off a .219 season and a history of injuries. The
White Sox had given up on him, and nobody thought he was worth
acquiring. Call the A's the "A Plusses" for this move, which
appears to be about to pay off with a division championship.
Yellow asterisk: funny (maybe). White asterisk: expanded format.
Blue asterisk: not mine. No asterisk: it probably sucks.
Rapa Nui (1994)
Rapa Nui was an attempt by producer Kevin Costner to solve the mystery of
Rapa Nui (Easter Island). I was unable to find out why he felt compelled to do
so, but it must have been some burning desire that convinced him to spend $20M
to make a film in the most remote and uninhabitable place in the world. How
successful was he? The film grossed a whopping $305,000. In fact, this film is
so completely forgotten that it has still not come to region one DVD 12 years
later. I screened a Chinese region-free full screen version that is devoid of
special features, but does have the original English soundtrack. A Region 2
DVD also exists that is a much better Widescreen transfer, but is entirely in
German with no subtitles.
The story revolves around an annual pecker contest among the brightest and
best from each "long-eared clan" to determine which clan chief will reign for
the next year as "bird man" for the tribe. Each clan picks a contestant who
must scale a cliff, swim through shark infested water to another island, steal
a bird egg from a nest, and make the return journey. While the long-ears
(aristocrats) are holding their Olympics, the short-ears (slaves) are
conscripted to raise all the food for the island, as well as to make and set
up the immense statues called Moai. The local religion holds that Rapa Nui is
the only land left in the world, the rest having sunk, so the priest is
arranging to build all of the statues for a chance to ride the "white canoe"
to heaven. Unfortunately, the construction project is destroying the island's
The year when our story takes place is the year things could change because
the grandson of the current bird man will race for his clan, but he has
strange ideas about such things as ecology and human rights, and he is in love
with Sandrine Holt, who is a short-ear. He is not alone in that passion, as
the heir apparent to short-ear leadership also loves her. Holt spends much of
the film locked in the "cave of the white virgin," from which she emerges
obviously ready for the larger "two-room cave of the woman who is no longer
virginal and needs a nursery for a baby soon to arrive." Oh, those cave
Honestly, although the story told here is plausible, my overwhelming
reaction was, "This is just plain silly." It is a case of reverse synergy. The
film is much less than the sum of its parts. It has lots of pleasant nudity.
Beautiful Sandrine Holt, and all the other women who made this film,
constantly ran around topless in mostly freezing weather while pretending on
camera that it was warm. In addition to beautiful semi-naked women, the film
has an exotic location, sound historical background and strong messages about
ecology and human rights. That, on paper, sounds like a good movie, and many
do seem to love it.
As for me, it is not one I will re-watch.
Scoop's note: Here are some Tuna images I
forgot to include yesterday. It's an unknown actress in Power and Beauty.
Dann reports on Infidelity:
1997 crime thriller has a weak story, and a plot that gives itself away
early on, but the nudity's not bad.
An ex-fighter ex-illegal arms dealer
wannabe music producer is contacted by old mob cronies who want him to
produce a beautiful young singer, and also do an arms deal. Further
complicating things is that the girl is managed by a mobbed up guy who,
unknown to the producer, helped rig the producer's final fight, in which
he got badly beaten. To make things even more complicated, the manager is
also the girl's (very jealous) lover.
Problems with his wife drive the producer
into the arms of the young singer, but he is spotted leaving her
apartment, and when the girl turns up murdered, he finds himself on the
run from the law, and the girl's furious manager/boyfriend.
This could have been a decent crime flick,
but weak script and acting combined with the unexceptional story to make
it just ..... well, mediocre. It's still an OK way to kill an evening, and
the nudity's not bad.
Pat's comments in yellow...
The Harvard School of Public Health found that Americans' race, income and where
they live have a major effect on their lifespan. The longest-lived Americans are
Asian-American women in Bergen County, New Jersey, who typically live to 91. On
average, all Asian-American women live 21 years longer than inner-city black
men, but the shortest-lived Americans are male American Indians in parts of
South Dakota, who die around age 58. Oddly enough, the longest-living white
people weren't rich but low-income residents of the Northern Plains states,
where men live to 76 and women live to 82.
* And better yet, it seems much, much longer
The Quebec alcohol industry group Educ'alcool has adopted new ethical guidelines
and is calling on booze makers to create more responsible ads. The code
prohibits any implication that alcoholic beverages improve physical or
intellectual capacities, or have health benefits. It bans images of people who
look younger than 25, any depiction of drinking games, or any sexism or the
association of alcohol with sexual performance, sexual attraction or
popularity. A spokesman said, "We're not against beautiful women, or fun, or
anything like that. On the contrary."
* From now on, beer ads will show fat, sad, boring
losers, and the slogan
will be, "Drink beer and forget you're just like this."