Sleeping With The Enemy Review

This review is of the edited TV-14 version of the film. All thoughts below should be addressed as such as a review of the unedited version would be more negative.

When you see a title like this along with the general premise you will probably just walk right on past it to the next section of the store. It just doesn’t seem like a winner and your initial gut would be correct. It’s rather difficult to make a plot like this work in the first place so it’s no surprise that it didn’t but I’d say the film put in an effort. It just didn’t end up paying off this time around.

The movie opens up by introducing us to Laura, she’s certainly a tragic character married to the abusive Martin. One day she is able to escape by feigning her death and settling down in a small village. She meets up with her new neighbor Ben and prepares for a rebound romance. Unfortunately she made one critical mistake when escaping her old life. She threw her ring in the toilet and flushes but never actually checked to see if it went down. It did not and now Martin has reason to suspect that she isn’t actually dead. He sets off to find her. Will Laura be safe in this town or is it all over.

I would say the ring is her only mistake because while we do get a tricky call from someone that blows her cover, it’s not likely that she could have controlled that. You should only worry about what you can control which in this case is the ring. While that was an unfortunate slip, Laura did do a good job of seizing her opportunity when she needed to. Jumping into the ocean during such a storm is definitely not an easy thing to do that’s for sure. I would also make the case that Laura should have kept her wig on instead of going back to her classic hair. It would help with the disguise at least a bit and coupling that with a new name would help quite a bit in staying under the radar. It wasn’t quite to be though.

The film definitely sets Martin up as the big bad guy right from the start. He’s shown to be pretty crazy almost immediately and from there he only goes worse and worse. Unfortunately people tend to talk to him quite a lot so he finds out information on locating Laura pretty easily. You’d think there would be a lot of warning bells set off when this guy approaches you but people don’t seem to notice each time. The guys here aren’t the most perceptive that’s for sure. I was half expecting him to destroy the boat guy who showed up near the beginning but that guy got lucky this time.

Meanwhile Laura is a solid main character. As mentioned, she was pretty brave to come up with the plan to escape and does a good job of rebuilding her life. She contributes quite a bit towards the end of the film and doesn’t back down when it’s crunch time. She’s easily the best character here although there isn’t much of a cast to go against her. We’ve got Ben but he’s not all that great. The guy means well of course but he goes down real quick in the climax despite having the element of surprise and I wasn’t a big fan of the romance either. It definitely seems like a romance is the last thing Laura would want to deal with right now after seeing how the last one went. The way Ben handled the whole apples situation also wasn’t the greatest first appearance for him if he was trying to make a positive impression. The only thing I’ll give him credit for is noticing that something was wrong during the climax of the film.

Now having a plot like this one with an abusive character like Martin makes for easy tension in a film but it’s definitely not a plot that will help a movie. The first chunk of the movie is all pretty unbearable until Laura is able to get out of there. Of course you may wonder how she ended up with someone like this but of course she explains he wasn’t always like this and used to appear to be nice. It’s one of the dangerous things about relationships and why you can’t blame Laura here. At the end of the day it’s hard to ever really know someone else and this kind of thing could happen. It’s a very tragic plot point to be sure but definitely not one that makes for good film.

Overall, Sleeping With The Enemy is not a film I would recommend. The main plot isn’t good and since that’s the whole focus of the film it’s unable to get past that. The movie just would have needed something drastic to really get past this. At the end of the day the writing isn’t bad and the film moves pretty quickly but there’s just no way to really recommend it. At the end of the day the movie just isn’t really any fun. That said, you would expect that just based on the title and the synopsis. If you want a thriller to watch I would recommend the latest Mission Impossible instead. That one gives you a lot of tension and action but also has a pretty fun feel to it.

Overall 2/10

The Courtship of Eddie’s Father Review


Time for a rom-com film from a while back. So right away I had some concerns here because a kid was going to have a big role in the film. As you may know, kids tend to distract from the film going on with a lot of their crazy antics and holding things back. Unfortunately Eddie is no exception and easily the worst character in the film. Fortunately the rest of the movie is still pretty decent and it’s a film I could recommend. I just think it could have been even better if Eddie himself just wasn’t in the mix the whole time.

The movie starts by introducing us to Tom. He’s a man whose wife recently died so he’s doing his best to go on with life as normal. Unfortunately Eddie isn’t happy about this and wants to have a Mom again. Tom assures him that the two of them will be okay but Eddie throws fits and begins crying all the time. So Tom begins on his journey to find someone and ends up meeting a lady named Rita. Unfortunately Eddie doesn’t like her because he wants Tom to marry their next door neighbor Elizabeth. There are a ton of reasons why this shouldn’t happen, particularly that Elizabeth was Tom’s wife’s best friend. You’re not really going to marry her best friend right? Right?….well we’ll see if Tom can stay strong.

So I’ve already wrote about Eddie but lets wrap up his character now so we can move on to the others. He’s just really not coping well at all and tries to deflect this all the time by saying that Tom isn’t happy. You can see how visibly confused Tom was because they had just finished watching a movie that he enjoyed quite a bit but Eddie quickly threw cold water over the whole thing. Throughout the film Eddie is constantly projecting like this and Tom ends up being under a lot of pressure to find someone and fast. Then you’ve also got the scene where Eddie is rude to the girl at camp. This is already bad but even worse is the fact that everyone in class was always teasing her so Eddie had been the girl’s only friend. This sudden betrayal would be hard for the girl to deal with and this is never brought up again. Eddie’s just really mean throughout the entire film and every scene with him will have you cringing.

As for Tom, he’s okay but I wouldn’t actually call him a good character either. First off, as much as Eddie whines about the whole thing, that shouldn’t be enough to just make him find a new wife so quickly. Then you’ve got the fact that you can’t really take him seriously in these new relationships. He is seemingly interested in 3 women during the course of the film, Dollye, Rita, and Elizabeth. Dollye is taken off the table early on but with Rita and Elizabeth the guy can’t make up his mind. He actively goes on dates with both of them and doesn’t see any problem with this. Inevitably one of them won’t have a happy ending here.

Like Eddie Tom tends to lose his cool pretty quickly though so that also hurts him as a character even aside from not being able to make up his mind. He’s constantly insulting Elizabeth so it’s no wonder that they didn’t hit it off. Additionally when he tries to turn her logic against her when she rightfully points out that he’s always scared and pouting…it doesn’t work. He tries to say that she is also afraid of being in a relationship except that she is still going out on dates and has a solid gig as a nurse so…his argument was terrible from the start. She’s also the one making the effort to go to his place and see Eddie so this is a one way street.

Elizabeth is a decent heroine but I also feel like she was moving in rather quickly with romantic intentions. So, this goes back to the ole rebound that I always speak against in these films. If your wife just died or you split apart, you can’t move on to someone so quickly. How serious were your feelings if you are already prepared to move on? Both parties are suspect there. Even though Tom is meant to be wrong in his speech about how Elizabeth was just there to get married…this did start to go in that direction rather quickly so was he really wrong? Elizabeth said she went there platonically but it sure didn’t stay that way for long. Additionally Tom was the one starting to seem desperate as he kept inviting her for drinks. Yeah, I can’t give that guy a thumbs up.

Rita was a pretty reasonable character as well. She was also interested in Tom from the start and did her best to claim him. Unfortunately Eddie was always trying to ruin things there. She handled things quite rationally and in the end it was Tom who just tossed her aside once he decided to be with Elizabeth. I appreciate the fact that the film didn’t immediately try to make her some kind of villain or anything like that. Rita stayed as a solid character throughout so I appreciate the film’s restraint.

The other two supporting characters were Dollye and Norman. I was fine with both of them being written out rather early though as they got their own subplot because they weren’t quite as interesting. Dollye definitely had a very odd first appearance. Fortunately it went well but if I were Tom I definitely would have had doubts on the request. Her overall quest is good though as she works to get more outgoing. It’s a very noble goal and one worth pursuing. Meeting up with Norman was quite fortunate for her because that guy is quite good at being bold and letting this be known far and wide. Whatever the guy wants he gets. Definitely not the most trustworthy sort but you hope things will work out for them.

The writing is pretty fun though. We do get some nice scenes of humor particularly with the maid who is trying to learn Spanish. She has clearly put in a lot of work to her craft and is just a likable person. She does try to look out for Tom a bit in her own way. In general while I may not be big fans of the main characters or the romance in general which I found to be a bit weak, the film itself is nice and interesting. I wouldn’t really say there is a whole lot against it beyond that. The film is reasonably long and a lot happens. It may drag on a tad at points but not enough to say it’s a bad film. Put it this way, you should have a good time giving it a watch but it probably wouldn’t rank for giving it a re watch after that.

Overall, If you can get past the fact that the characters are going for a rebound romance then this is a decent film. It’s a film that would have benefited from not having Eddie participate at all though. Seriously, the kid really didn’t need to be here. Without him the story would be a lot tighter and you could probably even develop the romance more since it wouldn’t all just be from pressure that the kid provided. If you ask me that’s a winning combination. I somehow don’t think Eddie will be going back to camp after all of this though, he certainly burned all of the bridges he could have there and the little girl isn’t likely to forget his final scene either. Maybe he could be more likable in a sequel if we get a big time jump or something.

Overall 6/10

Another Woman Review


Time for another Woody Allen film where unsurprisingly the writing is one of the weakest aspects here. The film has a decent premise I guess but one that the film drags on as long as possible. The longer the movie goes, the weaker it gets and that’s the problem. I didn’t actually think it was all that bad at first but we gradually got more and more drama with each character sinking further and further. By the end of the film there are no characters to root for and you’ll wonder what the point of the whole thing was.

The movie starts out by introducing us to Marion. She is a lady who has achieved great success academically and is happily married. One day though she begins to eavesdrop on a counseling session being held next door and realizes that maybe her life is rather empty. She never noticed it before but the grass just seems greener on the other side. It turns out that Marion’s friends don’t like her as much as she thought they did and her marriage also seems rather lifeless now. She begins to reminisce about the good ole days and wonders if she should be taking a different path for her future. Is this all on the level or is she just taking herself down a dangerous path?

One thing about life is that you’ve always got to take the path of no regrets. Have fun while you’re young. You can still have fun once you’re older of course but why wait until then? If you put all of your dreams on hold in the present with the idea that you’ll do them all someday, then you may end up feeling like you have missed out somewhere along the way. That’s what happens to Marion here but the thing is that she has nobody to blame but herself. We learn in the film that she can be quite judgmental at times. She is very quick to point the finger at others or overthink things. Then you’ve got the fact that she had an affair with someone who was already married. In fact, she got him to divorce his current wife and marry her.

That’s not some slight inconvenience like taking the last can of pasta at the supermarket. She just wrecked an entire relationship for her own gain without a single doubt. At least she did not accept the advances of another married man who wanted to be with her but it’s hard to give her much credit at this point. When she learns that her husband is cheating on her as well it’s also hard to feel as bad for her. If you gain someone by cheating then you already know that your partner isn’t the trustworthy type. There’s no reason to believe that you’ll be the exception and that nobody would dare cheat on you.

Marion is definitely a very flawed character here which is part of the point of her character arc but it’s definitely not in even remotely an interesting way. She feels more like a villain than a protagonist most of the time. Her supporting cast are all just as suspect though. First you’ve got her husband Ken who loves hanging out at parties and having a good time but isn’t really the trust worthy type. He’s very much a man of habit who just goes through the motions of life. He does whatever gives him the most pleasure and doesn’t care about the rest. Then you’ve got Larry who has no problems trying to get together with someone who’s already married. The film tries to get you to think that she would have had a better life with him and perhaps that would be the case but she was already married during these advances so there’s no way that getting together with him would have been the “right” move at that point. She had already boxed herself in with a pretty bad set of choices.

As mentioned though, the writing is just really bad. Pretty much all of the characters are as crude as can be. The dialogue is all pretty crazy most of the time but not in a cool surreal way. Just in a boring sense where everyone just seems to care about talking on matters relating to relationships, scandals, and cheating. It’s rare to find any conversation in the film that is actually upbeat and interesting. All of the characters just feel really bad for themselves the whole time. It’s easy to see why none of them are happy. You’ve got to make the best with what you’ve got in order to be really content. Constantly comparing yourself to everyone else is a surefire way to do the absolute opposite.

If I had to name one decent scene I suppose it would be the trippy dream where everything turns into a stage play and Marion learns that her father is one of the people seeing the counselor next door. She also finds out that she is responsible for her first husband destroying himself. Did I mention that she had a first husband? Marion moves very quickly and rebounded from the guy with someone else shortly afterwards. Just in case you thought we didn’t already have too many romance plots going around. He died off screen prior to the film starting but this extra detail was clearly just added for kicks to show that the cycle keeps going on. I wouldn’t be surprised if he was already married before she met him just like the other affairs in the film.

Overall, Another Woman is an appropriate title here as nobody in the film seems content with the person they already have. You can also look at it in another way as there’s always another woman blaming Marion for their troubles. You’ve got the “best friend” who gets drunk all the time and blames Marion for a relationship that never actually happened. You have the Ex who blamed Marion for stealing her husband which is actually true but if he could be stolen so easily then he clearly wasn’t worth anything from the start. Etc. There’s a whole lot of the blame game going on around here with a ton of twisted relationships. Nobody trusts each other here and for good reason but it also means that none of these relationships would have stood much of a chance if you ask me. Either way something would have come along to mess things up for them. I would definitely recommend watching just about anything else instead of this film. If you want a good drama title then watch To Each His Own instead for a much higher standard of quality.

Overall 3/10

The Yellow Rolls-Royce Review


Time for another anthology type film. The Rolls-Royce is a pretty interesting car to see and I can see why the brand was so well known back in the day. Personally I can’t imagine spending too much of a premium for a car though. Cars are already an outrageous price so to go even higher just for design? Maybe if the car could make me my morning Pepsi or something but otherwise no dice. Still, it makes for a fun little car to connect the 3 stories together. There is a whole lot of deception and cheating going around in these films so you really can’t trust anybody.

The first story picks up with Charles heading to the dealership to pick up his car. It’s a Yellow Rolls-Royce that even has a phone in it. Everything’s not quite how he wanted it installed but he needs it today and can’t fuss over it further. See, he had forgotten his anniversary (pretty big thing to forget to be honest) Still, he figures better late than never and heads on home to a big party. The Gold Cup is happening the next day which is a huge horse race that he looks forward to every year. He tends to win it every year but it never loses that feeling of excitement and splendor. Still, his wife Eloise is acting a bit odd. Charles doesn’t want to read into it but people are definitely giving him ideas. Particularly one lady who certainly doesn’t like Eloise and basically tells Charles that Eloise is cheating on him. He can prove that she isn’t pretty easily by checking on his Rolls-Royce. The thing is, checking the car would mean that he didn’t trust her. So the instant he heads for the car the relationship will never be the same but at the same time he has to know. What is he to do?

The film doesn’t keep it a secret that she is cheating on him from the start. This isn’t a mystery or a thriller. It’s really just about showing how betrayal can hurt quite a lot. At that point there isn’t much Charles can do. He’s tied up socially although I think that’s no excuse. Are you really able to just keep going on like everything’s normal? I feel like that’s not a good strategy because now either he’ll just go on knowing that she is probably having affairs with other people or he’ll do the same thing as revenge. Either way I don’t think he’ll be able to get excited for the Gold Cup anymore.

This was a pretty strong way to start the film. It’s easily the most emotional special. While you can’t say Charles is a great guy (He routinely ignores an ambassador who is trying to convey urgent information because he doesn’t want to deal with it) he at least seemed like a nice one. He definitely takes this hard and who wouldn’t. Eloise definitely looks really bad here. Cheating is definitely never a good idea and it’s really impossible to sympathize with her plight here. She half heartedly almost decides not to cheat but quickly goes through with it anyway. At that point she certainly made her choice.

Next up is a story about a gangster named Paolo and his gal pal Mae. He is trying to show her all the best sights in Italy and Rome but to his great annoyance she is really not impressed with any of them. In fact, they bore her completely and she wants to leave. Paolo is determined to get her to change her mind but ends up having to leave on business. See, he’s part of the mafia and from time to time he is called in to erase people. He leaves Mae with his most trusted ally Joey. Joey does his best to look after her but Mae quickly begins to like a local guy named Stefano. Stefano is a guy who flirts with everyone and admits this quite openly. He’s had more affairs than he can count but assures Mae this is the real deal this time. They have an affair but then learn that Paolo is coming back. It goes without saying that he’ll murder Stefano if he catches the guy with Mae. What can she do to save his life and prevent such a catastrophe?

Well, this is another story about cheating so I can’t say I feel bad for Mae or Stefano. Keep in mind that the person cheating is just as guilty as the single person who convinces the person in a relationship to get together. Now, in this case we have the mafia angle so you could make the case that Mae doesn’t even like Paolo and isn’t truly in a relationship. I’m not really sure that one would hold weight in this case. At the very least the secretive nature of the whole thing isn’t great and if she was serious about this she should escape with Stefano right away. I have no doubts that Paolo would track them down eventually though so then the best thing to do would be to not have the affair at the start. It would be the best way out.

Joey was definitely a really solid friend here. He maybe looked the other way too much but he did his best to keep Mae safe. Even if it meant keeping Paolo in the dark he succeeded in his mission. Paolo told him to keep Mae safe and that’s exactly what he did. Meanwhile Paolo made for a pretty fun figure. You could never really know what he was thinking. I suspect he knew more than he was letting on at the end of the film but chose to look away just this once. Perhaps he had more mercy than I would have suspected.

Finally we go to a story that actually has a war in it so there’s some high stakes here. Gerda has bought the Rolls-Royce as she prepares to travel around Europe. People keep trying to warn her that a war is breaking out but she refuses to hear it. Sensing that Gerda may be someone easy to manipulate we are introduced to a guy named Davich who claims he is a hero who will help end the war. When Gerda doesn’t really understand what this means he gives up the subtle act and just holds her at gun point to help him out. She begins the journey but is she actually bringing along someone who is very dangerous and will jeapordize the war?

This story definitely didn’t go quite how I thought it would. See, I was convinced that Davich was a bad guy. That he would turn out to be a Nazi or something as he showed his true colors. Instead his story was actually on the level and he was hear to helo the rebels win the war against the Nazi’s. It takes an incredibly long time for Gerda to get on board with this though. At one point she even starts eating a meal while bombs are flying in the distance and she couldn’t be bothered. It was a pretty surreal scene and I wasn’t sure if it was being played seriously there or if it was supposed to be a comedic moment.

The special has a lot of different vibes throughout for sure. One thing the special didn’t manage to do was make Davich likable though. I don’t care how undercover he was, he threatened to murder Gerda’s dog which was pretty crazy. There was no way I could possibly root for him after that. He just seems a little too willing to do anything to help out even if it means becoming a villain himself. Even his ending is a bit suspect as he absolutely refuses help even if it would have been very helpful at that moment. I already talked about Gerda, she isn’t very good either. She’s just too slow on the uptake the whole time and would very quickly turn on her dog at times. The final special definitely suffered from a weaker cast than the first two stories.

Overall, The Yellow Rolls-Royce is an interesting anthology. All of the shorts are pretty solid. It’s definitely one of the more emotional ones as the first two shorts have sad endings and the final one has a happy ending but with somber undertones as there were significant casualties. It is good that the main heroine there was quite skilled once she realized the danger was real and quickly pitched in to help. Imagine if she had been that heroic the whole time. While the movie can be quite somber I wouldn’t say it’s ever too down in the dumps. I would describe it as the film never letting you get too excited and content because you know things are going to turn but you have a good time in the meanwhile. The first special definitely handles this the best I’d say in part because the betrayal just feels the most personal and the film succeeds in making you feel bad for the main guy even though he wasn’t portrayed to be very heroic. I’d recommend checking this out if you want a good collection of dramas.

Overall 6/10

Fatal Attraction Review

This review is of the edited TV-14 version of the film. All thoughts below should be addressed as such as a review of the unedited version would be more negative.

Fatal Attraction is one of those films that makes it really impossible to be all that sympathetic to the main character. He makes a ton of mistakes throughout the film and ultimately has to live with the consequences. It’s a nice cautionary tale about how a one night stand can quickly wreck your entire future going forward. It’s definitely not a romance film I would recommend and works as a complete opposite to People Will Talk. If that film depicted one of the most wholesome romances out there, this one would be one of the more sinister depictions.

The movie starts with Dan attending a party along with his wife Beth. Things have been going pretty well for the two of them over the years. They have a kid and a solid home environment. Dan is also making pretty good money as a lawyer. Unfortunately Beth heads off for a day to go check out a house they are interested in buying. Dan can’t imagine the thought of being alone for a night so he quickly makes an advance on Alex, a lady he has only known for a few hours and they have a one night stand which quickly becomes 2. Dan then decides to cut this off with Beth being back but Alex won’t accept this. She says Dan has to stay with her and her upcoming kid or she will continue to wreck his life. She goes from spamming his phone to outright murder and kidnapping. Can Dan really stop her or will this be game over for him?

So there’s no way to sympathize with Dan here. The guy just makes mistake after mistake which comes back to bite him. He knew exactly what he was doing at all times so lets keep that in mind. It’s not like this was some accident, he was drunk (Which is still no excuse) or he was alone for months and slowly started to crack. It was a single night…he hadn’t even gone home yet so more like an afternoon before he cracked. The guy had absolutely 0 loyalty to his wife Beth and that means his bond was never as strong as he thought it was. He also doesn’t prioritize his dog as he even forgets to feed him/give a walk the first night. That shows that Dan also isn’t responsible.

The movie definitely makes sure to show what a hopeless path Dan has found himself on. Unfortunately the film decides to throw in some animal violence as well as when Alex murders their rabbit. Did we really need to see this? At this point Dan still does not immediately call the cops on her. I suppose getting fingerprints may be difficult but I’d like for them to have at least conducted a search, see if you can come up with something. Alex had quite the rap sheet by the end when you factor in the kidnapping. It’s why schools always got to have a very strict policy about who is allowed to take a kid off the premises. If you’re going to have someone different pick up a kid then there have to be agreements and something in writing saying that this person is allowed to take the kid. Someone just saying it isn’t quite enough.

Beth was a solid character. She had no reason to suspect anything during the film. As far as she knew Dan was just a faithful husband going about his business so the whole thing definitely comes as a big shock. I don’t really see how she can ever forget that so I don’t see things going well after that. The kid was too young to really contribute anything to the film but did add to the tension later on. Dan’s friends were pretty reasonable. They had some good banter with the leads and even Dan’s co-workers were pretty reasonable. It shows how much he threw away during all of this.

We do get an action scene at the end of the film though so it ends on a bang. Dan looks pretty bad during this fight though and I also have to suspend a lot of disbelief for his not hearing anything with the tea kettle on. Tea is fairly loud but not quite That loud. I also thought Beth could have fought a little more as she was mostly just frozen in shock the whole time. There’s quite a bit of back and forth here though. For the most part the film’s about mental warfare but I suppose the actual ending wanted to shake things up a bit.

I wouldn’t say there’s a whole lot to like here though. The plot itself ensures that there are few likable main characters. It’s always tough when a film has a main character you just can’t get behind because you’ll be seeing him throughout so that can be tricky. The romance itself is naturally pretty bad as well. It was definitely an ill advised affair from the start. The writing is okay I suppose but nothing out of this world and the pacing is also fairly standard. The animal violence didn’t do the film any wonders either but even without it this just seemed like a recipe for disaster.

Overall, Fatal Attraction is definitely a reminder on how all actions have consequences. Dan thought he could hide from his but at best that will just delay the inevitable. After a while you have to own up to things although ideally in less of a theatrical fashion. At least the film had the restraint to not have anything happen to the dog or that would have definitely hurt the movie even more. As it stands, if you want a film about quality characters with a good romance then I would recommend People Will Talk a whole lot more. As I mentioned in the beginning these films are polar opposites so with as good as People Will Talk ended up being, it makes sense that this one couldn’t reach those levels.

Overall 2/10

People Will Talk Review


Cary Grant has definitely been in quite a few great films at this point. He’s quickly turning into one of the better old school actors. Well, this film is no different as it holds its own quite nicely. I still have His Girl Friday as Grant’s best film as that one was pretty much flawless with an excellent game of cat and mouse. This one would likely rank right below it though. As always Cary plays a character with a quick wit who gets a whole lot of burns in there. It’s a very complete movie with a solid beginning, middle, and ending. There’s a lot going on so you’ll definitely need to stay focused,

The movie starts with introducing us to a Dr. Rodney who is jealous of Dr. Praetorius’ success. He wants to dig up some dirt on the guy to use against him. He gets a tip from the Dr’s maid from a while back and begins to look into the Praetorius’ current assistant- the man they call the Bat. Praetorius meanwhile has continued to heal people all across the land with his exceptional medical talent and skills. One day a lady named Deborah shows up with a serious problem. She is pregnant and can’t let anyone find out. Her life is even in danger as she plans to end everything to avoid the consequences of what will happen next. Praetorius has always done his best to help others but how can he possibly help Deborah out of her predicament?

First off, the film immediately displays its quality writing with the opening scenes of Rodney trying to find things out about Praetorius. The guy is definitely a pretty petty fellow so when the maid keeps taking shots at him you can’t help but find it amusing. Now granted, if he were doing this investigation for legitimate means then it is good that he is making sure things are on the level. You just know from the start that this isn’t the case. He even vanishes from the film for a long while I suppose he was using this time to build the case. Ultimately the film keeps you wondering what the scandal he found out about was until the end. As it’s a main plot point I won’t say what it is, but it’s a fairly minor thing. The whole time you’re wondering what a nice guy like Praetorius could possibly have hiding in his closet.

Well, while it may be slightly deceptive I can’t say it was anything too crazy. If you’re qualified for something but hide this fact to earn more but the end result is still the same what is the major harm? There is an honesty issue at play here of course but something to be fired about years later? Of course you’ll need to see the specifics for yourself. Meanwhile all of the characters get a lot of fun lines. The script is top notch and the film has really fast pacing so there is never a dull moment. With so many plot lines to pull that only makes sense though. Every character needs a turn.

It goes without saying that Praetorius is an excellent character. He really is a great doctor and someone you can count on to step up when needed. Deborah questions the motives behind one decision he made later on. I believe Praetorius when he says the accusation was false but it would still be pretty impressive if he went to such lengths as a doctor. Praetorius is someone you can rely on as he doesn’t sell out his friend even when prompted to do so and he always does his best to see to everyone’s best interests. Then you have Deborah who is a solid heroine. She did take some rather drastic steps at first though and certainly wasn’t in a great headspace. It’s good that there was a doc around. Later on we learn more about her backstory and why it was imperative that she hide the fact that she was pregnant. I question the situation a bit. Despite how obsessive her uncle was surely something could have been worked out? I dunno, maybe it wouldn’t have been that easy but of course dying prematurely is never the answer. Deborah is quite loyal at the end of the film when Praetorius is accused and sent to the council. She doesn’t waver in this.

The supporting characters are good as well. Praetorius’ friend is likely the weakest one but he’s a good guy. He doesn’t talk a whole lot but he’s always got the Doctor’s back and is also good with animals which is definitely a nice touch. They’re always a team. Then you have Deborah’s father who is always in good spirits. He’s another fun guy to have around and we can’t forget Praetorius’s friend Lyonel. It’s nice to just have a group where everyone gets along here and they have a lot of banter the whole time. Praetorius is close to quite a few people and developing such strong bonds isn’t easy. In particular I would give Lyonel a lot of credit because he defended Praetorius even in front of the grand jury where things could have gotten tricky for his career depending on how things went.

Overall, At its core this is just a very fun movie with a great cast of characters. All of the plots are quite interesting and the conclusion is satisfying. You feel like all of the characters act quite reasonably the whole time. I had no qualms with the movie and thought it was quite strong in all areas. It’s rare to have a main character get blackmailed with the past and not rise to the bait. Praetorius handled everything quite calmly only offered as much information as the council needed. Oversharing is definitely a recipe for disaster and he realized that early on. I also liked his abstract speeches about life and death near the beginning of the film. If you want to check out an upbeat romance film with a good amount of comedy in it then I would recommend checking out this film. It’s bound to leave you feeling pretty good. Virtually everyone has a happy ending with the only exception being Roddy.

Overall 8/10

Kaguya-Sama: Love Is War


This series has to have the most misleading volume 1 cover of all time. I always assumed this was either a horror series or some kind of vampire title. How else would that cover look? Kaguya definitely has a memorable design. The series is actually more of a psychological thriller as the characters try to one up each other similar to Liar Game. It’s off to a brilliant start so we’ll see how it goes and I’ll have a review up for the series when I finish it.

Overall 8/10

Corpse Bride Review


Corpse Bride reminds you that you gotta be careful when stating your wedding vows. Someone may get the wrong idea if they’re in the area. It’s a pretty interesting story since the main character isn’t brave enough to fight back so he gets himself in a lot of trouble. The film does tend to get a little grotesque with its visual humor though, particularly when in the land of the dead. It’s why despite how the heroine may be a nice person, it’s hard to see this working out for the guy. The whole eye popping out all the time would definitely make you shudder.

The movie starts with Victor preparing for his arranged marriage with Victoria. He’s pretty nervous about the whole thing. After all, the two characters have never even met before which makes things pretty difficult. Still, he is excited to meet her so he preps for this. He ends up being unable to talk much when he sees her and then messes everything up at the wedding rehearsal. Ashamed, Victor heads to the forest and put the wedding ring on a tree finger as he recites the vows. It turns out he said this to the corpse known as Emily who gladly accepts. He is now stuck with her in a wedding pact in the underworld. Victor needs to find a way back to the land of the living so that he can finally be with Victoria. To do that he’s going to need to trick Emily but should be really be doing something so underhanded?

From the start you can tell that most of the characters here are not meant to be all that sympathetic. Victor’s parents are usually taking shots the whole time. The mother in particular really just wants Victor to get married already so they can have some dignity. Meanwhile Victoria’s parents are completely out of money and they’re hoping that this will get them a nice pay day. The irony here is that as elites you figure that they would have a lot of cash at the ready. Both families are really using the kids as tools.

Fortunately it does work out that Victor and Victoria do like each other but at the same time it makes it easier for you to possibly root for the dead girl. After all you can only connect so much after a few minutes right? The cast is fairly small to be honest as the only other big character would be the villain Barkis. I can’t say that Barkis was very good though. I liked his initial appearance as he showed up to complicate things and mess with everyone. I can always respect that and he has a lot of confidence but his plan was basically to marry Victoria so that’s no good. We also learn about his past near the end which seals the deal as his not being a very good guy. Of course you would expect that from a villain bus his goals seem to petty and it also seems like he’s just not good at managing money. That’s a bad combination.

What holds the movie back to an extent is that the imagery can be pretty gross the whole time. Burton’s definitely no stranger to rather odd visuals that’s for sure. He likes having the goth motif and it can work reasonably well although I’ll take traditional any time. Whenever we’re in the underworld you can expect people’s eyes to be falling out, worms everywhere, and stuff like that. It’s definitely not the most pleasant backdrop and does limit the film a bit. As I mentioned earlier, it’s also hard to root for Emily as a result. Now the film does play the sympathy card for her quite a bit and to a degree you may feel bad for her. Her real life didn’t work out so well and so this was her chance to really make a comeback. In the present the whole misunderstanding is really on her though.

Is Emily trying to say that she only heard the vows and nothing before it? Additionally with context clues she should have been able to figure something out. Now it’s part of the main plot of course but Victor tries to tell Emily this was a mistake the whole time. The afterlife has not been great for her either as Emily just looks dead. This isn’t the kind of movie where the dead person still looks pristine. Even though Victor was willing to make this work it’s just hard to see this working out well.

Victoria’s a nice enough character although I wouldn’t say there is much to her. She definitely does her best to make sure everything turns out well though so I’ll give her some props there. The scene of her trying to ask the priest the tough questions was one of the funniest moments of the film. It was handled very well for sure. Then we’ve got Victor and I’m not a fan of that guy. He’s way too nervous and just goes along with what he’s told to do. The guy doesn’t have a whole lot of agency to himself. He’s really responsible for all of the messes he gets himself into. If he was just a little bolder and more outspoken then he wouldn’t have fared so poorly. Try this on for size, if Emily hadn’t made the call for him at the end then Victor would have just gone through with the whole thing. If anything you have to doubt his devotion to either heroine since he was clearly willing to go with either one or the other.

Overall, Corpse Bride is a pretty unique film. It’s definitely rare to see more of a Halloween romance film. The story’s not bad and there are some fun moments to be had for sure. The scene of the dead people going into the church while staying quiet was really nice since they still had respect was great. It was also nice to see everyone just hanging out and having a good time at the end. Zombies aren’t as scary when they’re actually good people and still have free will. The whole gross aspect of the dead side holds the film down to an extent though. It puts the film squarely in the green, it’s not a film I’d ever plan to rewatch but it’s not bad either. It doesn’t ever make any huge error that would make me turn it down. You can’t help but feel like it could have been a whole lot better though. If you want to see a film with this kind of atmosphere then I’d recommend watching Coraline sooner but you’ll have a good time here.

Overall 6/10

The V.I.P.s Review


It’s time to look at a film with a few different plots all happening at the same time. Usually in a film you have all of the plots come together rather smoothly but in this case they tend to keep some distance from each other. They do overlap to an extent but still remain separate by and large. It’s a pretty fun film. On the whole all of the plots are rather solid although for the main plot it’s hard to say that you’re ever really rooting for the main two.

So lets take this one point by point. All of the main characters are getting ready to board a plane and get out of the area. They all have different reasons for wanting to get on the plane but unfortunately there are a lot of delays. The cast will now have to try and adjust their plans accordingly but a simple delay has ended up inconveniencing a whole lot of people. First up we’ve got Frances who has decided to abandon her husband Paul and escape with a guy named Marc. She doesn’t intend for him to find out yet so she left him a message at home. Ideally she will be long gone before he reads it but the delay has thrown a bit of a wrench into that idea. Paul’s a powerful man so if he finds out in time that will complicate things.

Then you have Max who has figured out a pretty great way to earn a lot of money and then skip out on the taxes. The trick is that he has to be able to leave the country within a certain amount of days or then he will have to pay off the sum. If the plane is delayed overnight then he will be in a real pickle. The actress Gloria is really enjoying this and the two have a lot of back and forth banter the whole time. Next up is Les who is trying to secure a huge business deal. He thought he had a sure thing with one of the buyers, but the guy broke their handshake agreement and has raised the price. Les needs to make a purchase with money he doesn’t have and if he can’t get the money into the bank in time then it’s all over. Completing a deal over the phone is very difficult though. His secretary Mead wants to help but ultimately that doesn’t mean Les will appreciate that.

Then you’ve also got a nice old lady who just so happens to be the Duchess. She isn’t used to flying all that much given how much difficulty she has in boarding the plane. She handles things a lot smoother than the rest of the cast. While everyone else is constantly stressing out and running around in terror, she keeps things in perspective and just makes sure to have a good time. Nobody is going to spoil her vacation that’s for sure. While her plot may not have been as intense as the others, she was a fun character to have around.

So with all of these characters there was quite a lot happening throughout the film. There was rarely any kind of slow moment and so the film keeps your interest rather well. The writing is on point and the character roster had a lot of variety. I wouldn’t say that I had any real problems with the film. Certainly some of the characters may not have been as likable as intended, but this just ends up feeling like a rather complete experience. I’m always up for stories with a lot of different characters.

Back to the top. For the first plot, naturally I didn’t care for Frances deciding to cheat on Paul with Marc. While the film tries to make the case that Frances abandoned Paul because he wasn’t very good at showing affection, it’s not for a lack of trying. From what we see in the film Paul seems like a good guy. It would be something if he turned out to be an antagonist but the guy fights as hard as he can for Frances. It does come across as his having being betrayed out of nowhere and Frances didn’t try to make amends. You’ve also got to consider that Marc has been a player for a while now and even has that reputation. He breaks down and goes back to his gambling habits during the movie as well. Would he have been able to change for Frances? I suppose that’s left up for you to decide but I would have my doubts.

While the film portrays Marc as a nice guy, you have to consider that he was having an affair with a married woman. By default that means he wasn’t actually a good person no matter how he tries to present himself. Paul is the one who really stole the show here. It was a pretty intense plot either way though and certainly got the most screen time. The next plot would be with team Max and it was a fun one. The resolution was a bit iffy though because it doesn’t seem like Gloria actually likes Max. The whole thing seems like it just flew over her head and she has no idea what is going on. Hopefully she is able to get on top of things in time though. Max may act like a crook but the rules he’s using appear to be legitimate loopholes so if anything you’d just have to blame the law on how he can get away with all of the money. He was a fun character to have around. While the plot itself couldn’t match the main one, I did like the constant insults they would throw at each other.

Then you have the plot with Les. He is definitely responsible for getting himself in this mess. You can’t trust a verbal agreement when millions of dollars are on the line. It’s just not the right call and of course he was going to get messed over in the end. That’s just the way it goes in business. I also thought he wasn’t very appreciative of Mead’s efforts. He was very quick to drop her whenever something would happen and the scene at the diner was most telling. Mead was a bit desperate and shouldn’t have been trying for Les since he was taken anyway though so as a whole that romance plot is one you couldn’t really root for just like the main one. I’d consider it to be the weakest of the main plots. It’s not bad though and just like the other plots you can feel how the plane delay really messed things up for him.

Overall, V.I.P.S. is a pretty good film. It’s a pretty fun look at what things are like in first class seating. The characters really only get to all interact at once when they briefly go to the lobby to try and make phone calls. All of them are desperate for the phone but they’re still courteous about it which is nice. If you like films with a good amount of drama then this is a solid one to check out. You’ll also get to see who you’re rooting for here. At one point a character even takes out a gun which makes for a pretty tense scene. With the stakes this high some characters can definitely endure it better than others.

Overall 7/10

Light in the Piazza Review


It’s time to look at a romance film from a long time ago. We get to spend most of it in Italy so it’s always fun to have another location at the ready. It’s definitely a very busy area with a lot of people running around throughout the film. The heroines even come close to getting hit by a car near the beginning of the film. I wouldn’t say it’s all that good, but the film has some unique twists. Ultimately it’s just hard to get behind the romance plots here and Meg has one scene near the end that is very suspect.

The film starts with Meg and Clara enjoying the sights in Italy. Clara ends up dropping her hat but fortunately a nice young man by the name of Fabrizio shows up to snatch it. He has some fun running with the hat before finally giving it back to Clara. He instantly confesses to being deeply in love with Clara but Meg tries to break this off right away. See, Clara effectively has the mental abilities of a child so she always speaks her mind instantly and throws tantrums. She also falls in love quite easily and ultimately has gotten rejected quite a few times once they find out. This is what happened even in the latest relationship before this one which is why they went to Italy. So, Clara is always rebounding with someone and that makes you doubt how serious the relationship itself is.

With this in mind Meg just wants to avert another disaster but Fabrizio is far too cunning. He is fairly wealthy so he pays everyone off so they say where the main characters are at all times. It’s pretty impressive in some respects since this was before the age of cell phones. That means the guy had to do a whole lot of legwork to keep up with them. He’s determined to be sure but can’t really take no for an answer. He works well for a movie but I don’t see this approach working out too well nowadays otherwise. At least he never doubts his love for Clara so even if it started out as purely superficial (Love at first sight can be nothing else as you know nothing about the person at the time) it’s fair to say that it was genuine shortly after. The language gap if anything was actually a good thing since it helped them connect. The film is consistent in portraying Fabrizio as a nice guy.

Now, Meg could have quickly just laid the cards out on the table and see if he still feels the same way. Ultimately she just isn’t able to work up the courage to do so. She bonds fairly well with Fabrizio’s father Signor although that guy is less reasonable. He gives us the worst scene in the film where he convinces Meg to briefly cheat with him and would have gone further if she hadn’t declined. Definitely not a classy guy in the slightest since he is supposed to be married as well. Why couldn’t this guy have stayed classy? He was handling himself rather well for most of the film but definitely messed up the landing there. The whole ID fiasco was also sketchy.

It’s effectively the film trying to throw a quick red herring into the mix. Now if this is a big cultural thing then I guess it could work, but I don’t buy Signor forgetting Fabrizio’s age. I figured there would be a twist about that but the film never really goes into it. When it comes to age, so long as both parties are over 18 a few years isn’t a big deal. I think you definitely can’t go over 10 though or at least I don’t see it going well. Ideally you should be within 2-3 years of each other but I don’t think a few more make much of a difference either. Eventually it becomes a bit relative. Signor seemed more interested in the money by the end though as he perks up when Meg lies about their giving them a bigger gift from the father.

The way the film ends, Fabrizio and his family don’t know much of anything yet. They’ll have to deal with the consequences of the money and Clara’s status at a later date. Perhaps they will never find out as Meg suspects since their days are mostly spent sitting and gossiping but the money will have to be addressed. I wouldn’t be surprised if Noel would just give it though. Now that he won’t have to pay for the school either way he will have extra money on hand so perhaps it won’t really matter. Either way Signor was definitely no good and as I recall his character he would have to be the worst one in the film.

The film’s writing isn’t bad. Again, I can’t buy into the romance because it all feels like a lot of rebounds but in general it is hard to write romances. You tend to see more misses than hits in that field. Otherwise it’s a fun enough script and it’s also interesting seeing the process of learning Italian. I find it to be a little difficult since I’m already a little familiar with Spanish so it just gets confusing with the slight changes. I’m sure if you learned it first then it would be a lot easier or for some it may be easier to learn it after since a lot of it would be the same.

As for Clara herself, she’s an ok character. She can definitely be pretty unreasonable at times like not wanting to listen to any worries about Fabrizio and getting a bit obsessive at times. She definitely put him as the top priority even though they just met which isn’t a good move. Romance shouldn’t be at your top of the list of priorities. It ends up wrecking her day more often than not since she can’t really enjoy any of the other activities on the trip. They all seemed pretty fun too like hanging out as fancy restaurants and visiting the landmarks.

Overall, Light in the Piazza is definitely one of those stories about how love triumphs over all. At the end of the day Fabrizio’s persistence was definitely rewarded. He never gave up and did everything he could in order to win over Clara’s heart. In truth he won it over very quickly and Meg was the only real obstacle in his path. It does show that you have to be careful since everyone can be bought though. Even the hotel manager wasn’t safe as he called right when they left the place. So, next time someone nonchalantly asks where you’re going you may want to think twice before giving out that information.

Overall 5/10