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Dawn of the Dead

Description: Re-imagination (well, it's not really a remake) of a Horror classic, the dead walk the earth devouring the living. A few survivors in a Wisconsin town find refuge in an indoor mall.

The first apocalyptic ten minutes are some of the most horrifyingly choreographed scenes of a world gone mad that I've ever seen.

However, this is a surprisingly contemplative movie and made me think of the classic On the Beach as much as it did the original Dawn of the Dead. The real drama in the story isn't so much, look zombies, but how people deal with well, the end of the world. Unlike the original, there is a larger group of people and there is a greater sense of claustrophobia due to how the zombies are placed in the storyline.

There's an interesting moment when one of the characters says, "Look what you've done to Metropolis." It takes a moment to realize that it's a store and yet, Metropolis is empty and shuffling with dead.

The zombies were scary and vicious, very much on the model of 28 Days Later, rather than the original movie's slow shufflers.

The movie did a good job of engaging viewer involvement in characters who, well, let's face it, were pretty much cannon fodder. Sarah Polley, as Ana, does a good job serving as the heart of the story. Ving Rhames is, well, Ving Rhames, solid and taking names. Jake Weber, as Michael, gives an excellent performance as the sort of person who makes civilization and civilized behavior work. Of course, there also a fair number of throw away characters, but when a movie manages to get you attached to a character who spends the majority of the film giving lines by white board, it's doing its job. A horror movie is only as horrifying as you invest in the characters.

Oh, and don't leave before the credits role. There are more scenes.


Description: A spoiled teenager, Sarah, wishes that the Goblin King would take her brother so she wouldn't have to baby sit him. Ooops.

Ah, classic Jim Henson muppeteering and David Bowie as the tight pants wearing Goblin King. It really doesn't get much better.

A young Jennifer Connelly, but already having her trademark glow, races through the Labyrinth of the Goblin King to try to reach her brother before he becomes a goblin.

This is a classic coming of age story. Over and over, Sarah says, "It's not fair." until finally she realizes, no, it's not. That actions have consequences and friends and family are more important than things.

A movie with muppets for the kids and David Bowie for mom.

Fleisher Superman

Description: 1941&1942 movie short cartoons of the man of steel.

These cartoons may be over sixty years old, but they look beautiful. The animation is luscious and filled with art deco style.

Lois Lane, well, she's Lois. Full of His Girl Friday intensity and sassyness.

These cartoons also feature the origin of the "Faster than a speeding bullet..." lines, as well as a Superman who just as often leaps as he flies.

Good clean fun.

Superman the Movie

Description: Krypton go boom, look up in the sky.

This movie defined Superman in pop culture imagination for a generation. For me, Christopher Reeve will always be the epitome of a super man.

It has it's cheesy moments. Clark Kent as bumbler. Lois Lane's little extemporary poem as they are flying, but when he flies, it is the superman movie of my childhood.

A fun movie.

Superman: Last Son of Krypton

Description: Krypton still going boom, please continue to look up in the sky.

Now, if you were to ask for my favorite pop culture version of Superman, it would be this one. With the Dini team of Batman fame, turning their eyes to the man of steel, they turn out one of the more human versions.

The art style is very reminiscent of the Feisher, but with a modern sense of the character. This Superman features a Clark Kent, who get to be intelligent as an investigative reporter.

The voice talent is incredibly well chosen. Dana Delany, providing the voice of Lois Lane, is sultry and sarcastic. Tim Daley, in the Superman role, provides just the right balance of determination and boy scout. Clancy Brown, as Lex Luthor, is just as nasty as he should be.


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