I know I have been neglecting this blog. There should be more frequent posts coming soon (I hope).
Goya's Ghosts (Javier Bardem, Natalie Portman, Stellan Skarsgard, dir. Milos Forman)
My review in Las Vegas Weekly
I had pretty low expectations of this movie thanks to reading multiple negative reviews, but it turned out not to be that bad. It's kind of a mess, but individual elements are interesting, and it held my attention up until the last half-hour or so. Still, not exactly a success, and one wonders what Forman has been up to in the eight years since he last made a film, and if he might start on the next one a little sooner and set about redeeming himself (because even here you can see he has a great eye and a way with actors). Opened limited July 20; in Las Vegas this week
Resurrecting the Champ (Josh Hartnett, Samuel L. Jackson, Kathryn Morris, dir. Rod Lurie)
This sure is a dull, earnest movie, although for the first half I sort of went along with it in its inspirational cheesiness. After that, it gets bogged down in lessons about integrity and honesty and familial duty and whatever, and I totally tuned out. I imagine others will, too, although if you're looking for something vaguely pleasant and not too demanding, you could do worse. Plus, Jackson seems to be only partially coasting here, which is an upgrade from most of his recent roles. Wide release