2 Fast 2 Furious

I was halfway through a lengthy point-by-point review of what makes this movie so bad before I realized that A) I have enormous respect for the writers (for their other works) and don’t want to hurt their feelings, and B) it’s just not worth that much review.

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Robin Hood (Director’s Cut)

Director Ridley Scott and screenwriter Brian Helgeland’s version of Robin Hood certainly has all the elements of a dick flick: the rugged hero, his (merry) men, one or two or even three villains on his tail, and the girl he falls in love with. And if you were unfortunate enough to witness the theatrical release, you were slapped in the face with a fairly characterless “Braveheart” replica and a full-on dick flick to boot.

The Director’s Cut, however – and massive props to both Scott and Helgeland for this – simultaneously catapults Maid Marion to an essential leading role and restores the much beloved flavor unique to the Robin Hood legend.

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The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3

With Denzel Washington and John Travolta headlining, I expected a solid action romp bursting with fireworks. But “The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3” takes it a few steps farther, thanks to screenwriter Brian Helgeland’s insightful adaptation of John Godey’s novel.

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The Quick and the Dead

A tiny, terrified western town called Redemption. A stranger storms in unannounced. Dark. Fierce. Swilling whiskey like water. Packing an arsenal of firepower and the balls to challenge ruthless killers. Only this deadly stranger is a girl.

This is our kind of movie.

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From the trailers, “Wanted” looked like a god-awful cheese fest. Bullets that swerve around targets in mid-air, really? How did Morgan Freeman get hoodwinked into such nonsense? Imagine my surprise when I found myself totally sucked into this creative, riveting, non-stop action roller-coaster.

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It’s formulaic, it’s shallow, it’s historically inaccurate. And it’s far, far better than it has any right to be. Ridley Scott’s “Gladiator” is Dick Flick in its purest form, and it’s a shining example of how to do it right.

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Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves

I may be in the minority, but I love this movie, flaws and all.
Everyone knows the story of Robin Hood, played in this version by Kevin Costner, so only a snippet of synopsis is required: He steals from the rich, he gives to the poor, he’s been banished by Prince John and is adored and aided by just about everyone else. Screenwriters Pen Densham and John Watson give us some of everything here, a bit of origin story, a lively bout with the familiar characters, a good dose of honest thievery and flying arrows, and a few novel twists.

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Laeta Kalogridis. Famous for “Shutter Island” (screenwriter) and “Avatar” (producer). Writer/producer for the short-lived “Birds of Prey” TV series and the “Bionic Woman” reboot. I mention the last two with regret; I was a big fan of both. So I was excited to see Kalogridis’ take on this spin of the intruder-goes-native flick, based on Nils Gaup’s 1987 script.
Don’t get your hopes up.

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