Monday, September 19, 2005

2 movie reviews by moi

OK, I have no credentials to do this, but I love movies, so here are my thoughts on two I've seen this week.

The Thing About My Folks (Paul Reiser/Peter Falk)

The Thing About This Movie - It's Tiresome. I have two good things to say about this film: the scenery is beautiful and Peter Falk gives a good performance (considering what he had to work with in terms of dialog and direction). However, that said, I found this film extremely tiresome; watching paint dry would have been more entertaining. It seemed much longer than 97 minutes. Beginning with opening sequence, where everyone is talking over each other and Paul Reiser is repeating everything that's said to him on the phone, the movie is annoying. The film is filled with clich├ęs and shtick, not to mention endless incidents of audible flatulence by Falk. Also, the director seems to have had difficulty deciding whether to aim for laughs or tears. There are some sequences that are touching, but they're all played for laughs. If schmaltzy, sentimental, and "cute" appeal to you, you'll love it. But if you were hoping for something with more substance, see a different movie.

Side Effects

4 stars - Indie movie of the week. Kathleen Slattery-Moschkau's indie film, Side Effects, is a funny but accurate and intelligent portrayal of what it's like to work as a pharmaceutical sales rep. It was shot in Madison, Wisconsin, in 18 days on a budgetof $190,000, and it's better than most of the Hollywood blockbusters I've seen so far this year. Writer/director Kathleen Slattery-Moschkau was a pharmaceutical sales rep for 10 years for two of the biggest companies (Bristol-Myers Squibb and Johnson & Johnson) before becoming thoroughly disillusioned and leaving the industry to write this fictional script based on her experiences as a rep.

The movie stars Katherine Heigl (of the TV series, Grey's Anatomy) as Karly Hert, a young woman struggling to reconcile her values with the slick requirements and lack of ethics in her job as a pharmaceutical rep. Lucien McAfee plays Karly's boyfriend, Zach Danner. The rest of thecast and crew consists of local Wisconsinites, including the film's Hollywood producer, Holly Mosher, a Milwaukee native.

This is heavy subject matter, but it's successfully presented as a comedy/romance. Side Effects is not a perfect film, but it's informative, funny, and definitely worth seeing.


Jackie said...

Now.. I could see why you would go and see the Paul Reiser film.... because of all the advertisements...
But.. what made you want to see Side Effects? I've not seen that one advertised at all.
I want to see "My Date With Drew." It's another Indie film that was made on a really tight budget! Try $10,000.00. And, it's getting awesome reviews. It's about a guy who wants to try and get a date with Drew Barrymore, and all that he goes through to make it happen. Drew actually makes a few appearances in the movie, which is made more like a documentary, but not. Did that make one bit of sense?? lol
Check it out:


Lisa said...

I'm going to be on the lookout for "Side Effects" locally. Sounds like something I should see. Lisa :-]

emmapeelDallas said...

Wow, My Date with Drew sounds great, and I'll be on the lookout for it. And for $10,000? My hat is off to that crew! I wanted to see Side Effects because it's right up my alley, so to speak; I spent a little over 5 years working in pediatric psychiatry psychopharmacology research. In spite of it's being a comedy/romance, the film is chillyingly accurate regarding the Big Pharma companies and the way they conduct and influence research. I went to see the Paul Reiser film 'cause I had free passes to screen it, and I LOVE Peter Falk...but alas, the film wasn't worth watching, even on video, and I'd have walked out (been a long time since I've done that) if I'd paid for my ticket, but since it was a freebie I felt an obligation to stay to the end. It just wasn't a good movie, although I'm sure there are those who'll disagree.


Judith said...

Wow! Thanks so much for the movie reviews. What I appreciate more than anything is that you started off by stating you have no credentials to do such reviews other than your love of movies. That in itself, in my book anyway, gives you more credit than Ebert & Roper because I know it's authentically from your point of view, and your pocketbook isn't being greased. Side Effects sounds like a move I would enjoy.

emmapeelDallas said...

That's a great compliment, thanks! I've signed up as a volunteer at the Deep Ellum Film Festival this year (thus the cheeseburger at Adair's on Saturday), so I plan on seeing more movies than ever, and I thought it'd be fun to write some reviews so I could post them on IMDB, etc.


erarein said...

Thanks for the movie reviews. Like your journal, too. Been here quit a bit and haven't left comments before. Now I've got a link to your journal on mine...if that's okay.