The Emperor's New Groove Animated
This movie is like a perfect little eclair. It's fun. It's
fluffy. And since its short, it's low calorie too.
Plot nutshell The self centered Incan Emperor Kusco gets turned
into a llama by a former employee. Hijinks ensue. Kusco becomes a better
The movie is part moral lesson, part travel story, part (well mostly)
Kusco (David Spade) manages to pull off being a likable jerk, which
plays well against his genuinely nice moral guide/travel buddy Pacha (John
Yzma (a throaty Eartha Kitt) is an amusing (if not terribly terrifying)
villaness. And her henchman Kronk (Patrick Warburton) is absolutely hilarious.
Actually, when it comes right down to it, the voice casting is perfect.
And get this, it's a Disney movie with a complete nuclear family. (Yeah,
yeah, Mulan did it first, whatever) Mom (Wendie Malick) and Dad aka Pacha
are good parents to their fairly realistic kids.
The animation is crisp and manages to capture the feel of Incan art
and the Andes mountains.
There are a number of quotable lines ("Beware the Groove" springs to
mind.) and the sight gags are funny without being cruel.
Maybe, Dark Reality Definitely
M. Night Shayamalan strikes another mood perfect note.
Plot Nutshell Hmmm...problematic since I don't want to spoil
anything. Hmmm...a man survives an extraordinary accident. Why? Mix comic
books, heroes, villains, and the real world. Oh, just go see the movie.
Unlike The Sixth Sense, whose surprise ending hit you at the
end of the movie, the core concept of Unbreakable creeps up on you.
Until, by the end of the movie, you just sit there and say, "Of course."
That is if your not bouncing up and down in glee because this is such a
Now I will warn you, this is not an action picture. There are no explosive,
car chasing, running, jumping, leaping, fist flying sorts of stuff. This
is a quiet film. Atmosphere. Ambiance. Long quiet camera angles. Think
And Bruce Willis works as the perfect quiet core of the movie. David
Dunn, an ordinary man who is asked to accept some extraordinary ideas.
Samuel L. Jackson is great as Elijah Price, an unusual sort of prophet.
Billy Elliot Musical
Ok, I'm prejudiced. I love musicals because they express emotions
through a medium that I love, dance and song. Billy Elliot is a
great example of the right way to do a modern musical.
Plot nutshell Billy is a bright 12 year old in a small English
mining town who wants to learn ballet rather than boxing. His family, in
the middle of a long term strike, thinks only girly-boys do ballet.
However, Billy is determined to be true to his internal vision.
The movie is heart warming. Jamie Bell, as Billy, is outstanding. By
turns charming and obnoxious. You know, a kid. His family and friend are
realistically portrayed and there are no black or white options.
And then we have the dance numbers. They merge perfectly with the plot.
They make total sense and they're wonderfully choreographed. There is an
early dance number where Billy, fresh from his dance lesson, cavorts down
the street in an obvious homage to the Gene Kelly in Singing in the
Rain. The scene is full of boyish exuberant energy. Later in the picture,
Billy expresses his anger in a series of tap/slam dance moves which perfectly
express his sense of frustration and rage. The kid can dance.