Perri Nemiroff
Former Contributor

WRITTEN BY Perri Nemiroff

Adam

Dancy combines a stellar performance with his natural appeal to create a complex yet very likeable character. The condition makes social interaction extremely difficult for Adam and reduces his range of interests to a handful of obsessions. Additionally, he is incapable of reading and understanding other’s emotions. Rather than letting Asperger’s syndrome consume the character, Dancy makes Adam such a strong individual that the disorder fades into the background. It’s always there but never overwhelmingly so.

Moon

Slow films often falter upon a second viewing. Slow films that rely on the jolt of a major plot twist simply crash and burn. Not only is Moon unusual in that it’s a simple and alien-free example of the sci-fi genre, it’s also an exception to the slow-and-twisty rule. After a second viewing, Moon still packs a potent punch, and its ultimate impression is actually enhanced.

Saint John Of Las Vegas

Steve Buscemi isn’t a betting man, but he took a chance on a first time writer/director to step out of the character actor realm and take a starring role in Saint John of Las Vegas. It’s far from a masterpiece, but Hue Rhodes manages to do Buscemi justice providing him with a character ripe with emotion and a fascinating complexity. Buscemi returns the favor by powering the film with an engaging oddity.

The Loss Of A Teardrop Diamond

After earning a number of Oscar nominations and a handful of wins working with director Elia Kazan on A Streetcar Named Desire (1951) and Baby Doll (1956), it made sense that Tennessee Williams would write a third screenplay for the two to bring to life. The problem is, there’s really nothing to bring to life in The Loss of a Teardrop Diamond.

The Young Victoria

Emily Blunt stars as Victoria, a young princess amidst an intense power struggle. Her uncle, King William (Jim Broadbent), is dying and she’s next in line for the British throne. Rather than remain by his side to learn all she can about Court life, Victoria’s mother The Duchess of Kent (Miranda Richardson), forces her to live a life of seclusion.

Daybreakers

In the words of Lionel ‘Elvis’ Cormac (Willem Dafoe), “Life’s a bitch, and then you don’t die.” Hopefully, the days of the glittery brooding vampire will come to an end and the creatures can return to their roots. Not necessarily the Count ‘I vant to suck your blood’ roots, but at least to where vampires were badasses.

Inglourious Basterds [Blu-Ray]

Forget Wolverine, Night Owl, or any other superheroes that graced the big screen this year; Lt. Aldo Rain is my hero. On that note, forget Jason Voorhees and Michael Myers; Hans Landa is the most terrifying bad guy of the year. Inglourious Basterds is the way we all wish the events of WWII played out.

The Private Lives of Pippa Lee

In one scene, someone calls Pippa Lee an enigma. She replies by saying, “To be perfectly honest, I've had enough of being an enigma. I want to be known." Well Pippa, don’t get ahead of yourself because it’s the enigmatic elements that make The Private Lives of Pippa Lee curiously ingenious. Based on the title and the film’s poster, I’d like to bet you’ve already formulated a slew of preconceived notions. Good for you, because that’ll make the revelation of the film’s richly layered plot far more effective.

Serious Moonlight

Pet peeves are dangerous. They can be the tiniest of faux pas yet completely tarnish your impression of a person, restaurant or even a movie. It’s clear from the start that Serious Moonlight is likely to be a serious drag, but the utterance of the phrase ‘I could care less’ seals the deal. It’s ‘I couldn’t care less; and do you know what I couldn’t care less about? This movie.

Planet 51

I don’t care how mature you are--everyone loves a good cartoon once in a while. Sometimes you just need to leave the adult world behind and relax with some youthful hilarity. The problem with Planet 51 is it’s not youthful, it’s infantile

The Blind Side

Is every extraordinary true story worth adapting to film? It seems as though we’ve heard everything before, especially when it comes to down-on-their-luck athletes defying the odds. Well, Michael Oher’s story is pretty much just that, so the success of The Blind Side will rest in your hands.

Women in Trouble

You know that feeling when you’re doing something you shouldn’t and are on edge about someone catching you in the act? Okay, enough dancing in circles. Have you ever watched porn in the privacy of your own room and are terrified that your mom will walk in and catch you? Of course you have! That’s kind of what Women in Trouble is like.

Paranormal Activity

Seeing helpless victims face a brutal serial killer is terrifying but after watching Paranormal Activity, I’d much rather be hanging out with Jigsaw than the demonic force haunting Micah and Katie. Experiencing this movie with an unruly crowd definitely diminished the horrifying effects, yet I still walked out terribly frightened and dreading turning out the lights and going to bed. The film’s scare factor precedes it but Paranormal Activity isn’t just a cheap thrill, it’s an honorable production that easily trumps other films, even those not of its genre.

The Boondocks Saints II: All Saints Day

Writer/Director Troy Duffy has had ten years to develop a sequel to Boondock Saints and this is what we get? Either the moderate success of the first film has gone to his head or he’s secretly teamed up with the Wayans brothers, because All Saints Day comes across as more of a spoof than a sequel to an action-packed, dramatic and even endearing original.

Pirate Radio

Moviegoing isn’t always about deep meanings, life changing concepts or even just sending someone home with a theory to consider. Sometimes it’s just about having fun and the men of Radio Rock will help you do just that. Pirate Radio is just as much of a party as the daily lives of the crew on the ship. No morals, no shame and good music; who wouldn’t want to climb aboard Radio Rock?

The Box

Not all buttons are meant to be pushed and that fact couldn’t be more obvious when it comes to The Box. Do yourself a favor, think twice about giving into foolish curiosity and leave The Box’s button untouched.

Saw VI

Another Halloween, another Saw. It’s crazy to think that we haven’t gone a Halloween in six years, without Jigsaw torturing the unjust on the big screen. In the sixth installment, the series gets political pointing a finger at the health care system. Insurance companies aren’t always fair but the Saw franchise is guilty of a little discrimination of its own. Why do we have six Saw films and more on the way? Because they make money, of course! You’ve got to do what you’ve got to do to survive in economical turmoil and in Saw’s case, that means exploiting those with a thirst for horror and leaving the rest with one less movie option for the weekend.

The Proposal

The Proposal is a lot like the town it’s set in: simple and clichéd, yet refreshing. Sitka, Alaska is trouble-free, untouched by most modern technology, and packed with people who’ve known each other all their lives. Similarly, The Proposal is uncomplicated and provides the viewer with exactly what one would expect. You don’t go to Sitka unless you’re looking to get away from it all and have some quiet time, and you don’t watch The Proposal unless you’re hell-bent on a romantic comedy. As long as you know what you’re getting into, The Proposal will deliver.

Motherhood

The poster led me to believe the film would be a pity party for moms. Portions of the film certainly don that party hat, but overall Motherhood is charming and manages to turn the hackneyed concept of the used and abused mother into a fresh and pleasurable film.

The Stepfather

If you’re going to trade in the blood and guts for a PG-13 rating, at least make it exhilarating. The horror genre has diverged into two paths: the brutally gruesome and the suspenseful. The Stepfather clearly is going for the latter category, which would have been fine if it were in fact thrilling.

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