Movie preview

  • 2004-11-17
This week - The Forgotten - Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason - Fahrenheit 9/11

The Forgotten

Director: Joseph Ruben

Julianne Moore plays Telly, a woman in mourning for her dead son, when everyone around her starts telling her that she is crazy and never even had a son. This promising premise lasts for about 10 interesting minutes, but then everything falls miserably apart piece by piece. This is a second-rate "X-Files" episode at best, unconvincing both as a depiction of a mother's unbearable loss and as a mystical thriller. Though Moore bravely acts her butt off, she can do little to redeem this utterly predictable movie. It's terribly incoherent, and the intrigue becomes less and less convincing with every new inconsistency in the story. Eventually we are just left with a bunch of loose ends, an unintelligent pay-off and an entirely forgettable movie. (Julie Vinten)

Julianne Moore returns to her television soap opera roots in this mysical thriller. A mother mourns her 9-year-old son who has apparently died in a plane crash. She looks at her photo albums, watches him on video and remembers shared moments with the boy. First her husband tells her that their child was stillborn. Next her psychiatrist (Gary Sinise) says it's all a fantasy in her mind. Completely believable and engrossing, it will keep you on the edge of your seat or jumping from it (at least twice anyway). Though this movie may not be the most original, it's pure unabashed brainless suspense. There are certainly a lot worse out there. Strong performances by Dominic West and Moore keep "The Forgotten" on track no matter how preposterous it gets. (Laimons Juris G)

Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason

Director: Beeban Kidron

The film starts off with a number of laugh-out-loud scenes as Bridget stumbles through various cringe-worthy situations; it becomes less funny when we realize that we are, as Daniel Cleaver says, laughing at her and not with her. Where "Bridget Jones's Diary" was a celebration of Bridget's flaws, this movie just mocks her, replacing her self-conscious charm with irritating stupidity. Though the sequel has the best intentions, it also has a messy narrative and rehashes the same jokes and ideas from the first installment. Darcy and Jones fight until we almost forget why they're at each others' throats in the first place, almost killing the whole premise of the first movie. "What happens after you walk off into the sunset?" this film tries to ask. It would have been better not knowing. (Julie Vinten)

This is well-worth watching if you and your date have already seen every movie screening at the local cineplex. After getting off to a lethargic start, the second installment proves to be lacking vigor. It certainly isn't easy being Bridget Jones (Renee Zellweger). She's an insecure, accident-prone, chain-smoking bundle of neuroses. The pleasingly plump female has found her ideal man (Colin Firth) or at least she thinks so. Then she starts having serious doubts and happens to run into her former shag and infamous bad boy (Hugh Grant). This time around Zellweger isn't very appealing or sympathetic, while Firth and Grant manage to keep this bit of goose-down from totally flopping on its mediocre behind. Diehard fans of the three starring leads are sure to enjoy it enormously. (Laimons Juris G)

Fahrenheit 9/11

Director: Michael Moore

Although the Baltic release of "Fahrenheit 9/11" is very badly timed, this movie still shouldn't be missed. After all, its main bad-guy is still in power. Just through being one of the most talked-about movies of the year, this Palme d'Or-winning documentary has earned more at the box-office than any other documentary. It's sometimes funny, sometimes heartbreaking, but it's hugely unsettling all the time. Director Michael Moore is a great storyteller and a great entertainer, and while the documentary is an incredibly serious piece of work about a grave subject matter, it's still entertaining to watch. Being impartial was never Moore's style, but he is a fact-collector and his argumentation is strong. He delivers one awful truth after the other, presented in an upbeat tempo and with humor, sarcasm and wit. (Julie Vinten)

Wow - this is such a powerful statement against George W. Bush that it's downright amazing that he won re-election. Entertaining and thought provoking, it's only the second documentary (in 48 years) to win the Palme d'Or for best picture at the Cannes Film Festival. In Europe, where Bush is the most disliked U.S. president, the film has been met with rave reviews and ovations. Nevertheless, "Fahrenheit 9/11" is somewhat disappointing after the unprecedented hype and could easily be mistaken for partisan propaganda. Director Michael Moore has thrown together a convincing diatribe, but proves nothing. His "Bowling for Columbine" is a more satisfying work, because he delves deeper into his subject matter. However, it's gratifying to know that the Flint, Michigan-born filmmaker plans to make a sequel over the next two to three years. (Laimons Juris G)