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Bruce Willis Has Paranormal Fame

willis

From Moonlighting and Die Hard to Sixth Sense and 12 Monkeys, Bruce Willis is deserving of his 20 year fameathalon.  His tough-guy bravado and his everyman humor are at the core of characters like Korben Dallas, John McClane, and Hudson Hawk (hey, I thought was funny). He’s had culture-altering highs and some career-confusing lows, but his current movie is right in the middle: Surrogates (Rotten TomatoesMetacritic).  In honor of Bruce, this week’s roundup is all about the ups of optimism, the lows of pessimism, and the calm center of realism.  If your favorite things are sunny days, wide smiles, and the laughter of children, you’re first.

surrogates_poster

“Director Jonathan Mostow makes the proceedings such fun that you’re willing to forfeit the smart satire this might have been for the trashy adventure flick that it is.” Alonso Duralde MSNBC

Forfeiting never sounded so good.  One more from the half-fulls:

“Who doesn’t want to see Radha Mitchell hurl a parking meter like a javelin?” Jordan Hoffman UGO

Only people with no appreciation of awesome, but what do the haters think?

“The filmmakers were too busy throwing together potential blockbuster material to notice all the loose ends and gaping holes in logic. Which may, ultimately, explain why Willis looks so confused throughout. Maybe he, too, is straining to locate some intelligence amid all the machinery.” New York Daily News Elizabeth Weitzman

Are you a jowels half up or half down kind of person?

Are you a jowels half up or half down kind of person?

“If robots had to make a movie without human help, Surrogates is what they might come up with. All the parts are visible, but there’s no soul to be found.” Elizabeth Weitzman New York Daily News

Humans are so demanding.  So what if robots don’t have a soul?  Humans don’t have search engines, iTunes, or the ability to remove viruses and unwanted information from themselves.  We need someone to keep it real.

“A reasonably watchable sci-fi B movie, a case of a good director and some intriguing ideas struggling to overcome formula plotting, limp dialogue, and a serious case of the sillies.” Boston Globe Ty Burr

Good logic stirs my inner academic, but it shouldn’t prevent anyone from enjoying the joys of impossibility.  After all, Bruce has played a time-traveler, a ghost, and a cartoon raccoon.  And speaking of the supernatural, our next movie tells you what it’s about in the title: Paranormal Activity (Rotten TomatoesMetacritic).  Let’s hear the good, bad, and indifferent opinions of this little project.

paranormal-activity-poster

“It’s one of the scariest movies of all-time. YOU WILL BE AFFECTED as it’s hard to ignore the imprint it leaves on your psyche. You know it’s fake, and yet, you can’t shake it. Nightmares are guaranteed.”Brad Miska Bloody Disgusting

That reviewer would have grabbed your shoulders and screamed that review in your face if you had let him.  Is there a Dr. Jekyll to his Hyde?

“For a film already at the lower end of professional polish, the acting makes the whole shebang feel like a community theater rehearsal. I was half-expecting Corky St. Clair to show up as a spirit.”Brian Orndorf BrianOrndorf.com

Guffman needs to buy a watch

Guffman needs to buy a watch

“If you think horror movies can’t scare you, if you think modern horror has nothing more to offer, try sitting through “Paranormal Activity” and then thank the filmmakers for changing your mind…”Felix Vasquez Jr. Film Threat

I first read that review with a rational tone in mind, but it’s a lot funnier in commercial voiceover mode.  The last movie to receive an involuntary bipolar treatment might want to stay anonymous: Fame (Rotten TomatoesMetacritic).

fame_final_poster

“A film that’s largely a raw, uplifting love letter to creativity in every possible form.” Tasha Robinson AV Club

Ying, meet Yang.

“The new, unimproved Fame won’t live forever except in DVD cutout bins, and remembering anyone’s name will be a chore.” Steve Persall St. Petersburg Times

Our final level-headed middle man is the first person to ever win a Pulitzer Prize for film criticism.

“A sad reflection of the new Hollywood, where material is sanitized and dumbed down for a hypothetical teen market that is way too sophisticated for it. It plays like a dinner theater version of the original.” Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

Now then, to play the Maddie Hayes to his David Addison and bring this roundup back to the starting line, I submit to you that Roger Ebert once said of Die Hard that “Inappropriate and wrongheaded interruptions reveal the fragile nature of the plot and prevent it from working.” What would  Bruce have to say about that?

Bruce Willis's Surrogate should have looked like this

He'd say: My Surrogate should have looked like this

PDJ needs a body double

PDJ needs a body double

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