Posts Tagged ‘hamlet 2

10
Sep
08

Movie Review: Hamlet 2

 

 

Something else that didn’t need a sequel…

 

Starring Steve Coogan, Catherine Keener, David Arquette, and Elisabeth Shue. Directed by Andrew Fleming.

 

“Rock me, rock me/ Rock me sexy Jesus…”

 

Maybe I’m getting a little ahead of myself here. Coogan (“Hot Fuzz,” “Tropic Thunder”) stars as failed actor-turned-high school drama teacher Dana Marschz (which no one can pronounce correctly). The effeminate teacher lives in Tucson, AZ where he teaches drama and puts on plays based on popular movies; when the movie starts the senior play is “Erin Brokovich.” He is married to Brie (Keener) who hopes that he’ll quit his teaching job in order to go back to working at Rite Aid so they can have some money and kick-out their current boarder Gary (Arquette). Added to his marital woes is the possibility he may be “shooting blanks.”

 

If that wasn’t enough Mesa HS has cut back on all their art programs leaving only the drama department, which Marschz is soon notified will be cut after the end of the semester. In a desperate attempt to save theatre, he locks himself into his office and creates “Hamlet 2,” a sequel to the original that entails Hamlet going back in time to stop everyone from dying and in the process, forgiving his father. Somehow, Jesus Christ, Albert Einstein, and Satan are all part of the process. When the principal is given the script and all but shuts the production down due to its controversial nature, his drama students decide to take it “off campus,” thus upping the controversy ante. In walks Cricket Feldstein (Amy Poehler), an ACLU rep who will stop at nothing to preserve free speech, or at least sue for it. Lastly is Elisabeth Shue as herself; she works as a nurse because she got tired of all the crap that happens in the world of acting.

 

Lest I forget the music numbers “Raped in the Face,” and “Rock Me Sexy Jesus,” as well as “Maniac” and “Someone Saved My Life Tonight” as sung by the Gay Men’s Choir of Tucson.

 

So, what did I think?

 

When I first saw the trailer I couldn’t get the “Rock Me Sexy Jesus” riff out of my head. It’s damned catchy. And when you see it in the movie, you love it by the end. However, what hurts this movie is the “trailer syndrome”: everything funny about the movie is showcased within the 2-5 min cinematic promo. And the fact that the first half of the movie  d r a g s. Everything seemed to play out for the sake of playing out. Around Act 4/5 of the movie everything picks up and becomes more enjoyable.

 

Outside of the musical numbers there is the core of what the script was written about: a father disapproving of what a son wanted to do with his life and the later reconciliation/forgiveness. That I haven’t seen dealt with before. Coogan does a good job at being the “every artist” with a “denouncing dad” complex. Outside of that, I wished the film was either more dramatic or more comedic.

 

Do I recommend this? Maybe video rental.

 

My grade: C+

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28
Jul
08

August 2008 Movie Releases

 

 

 

“The Mummy 3: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor” – Brendan Fraser returns and Maria Bello replaces Rachel Weisz as another adventure takes them to China where Fraser’s son unearths the tomb of the Dragon Emperor and his army of 10,000. Also starring Jet Li. Opens August 1, 2008

 

“Swing Vote” – Kevin Costner is the “average Joe-loser” who finds that the election comes down to his vote. Opens August 1, 2008

 

“Pineapple Express” – Seth Rogen and James Franco are the pothead and dealer who are on the run after witnessing a cop commit a murder. Opens August 6, 2008

 

“Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2” – Four lifelong friends parting ways but keeping in contact through a single pair of pants. Star America Ferrera. Opens August 6, 2008

 

“Tropic Thunder” – Take an action star (Ben Stiller), a comedian (Jack Black), and an award-winning Australian actor who undergoes surgery to appear “black” (Robert Downey, Jr.) and have them make a war movie by dropping them in the middle of a REAL war. The trailer is hilarious. Opens August 13, 2008

 

“Henry Poole is Here” – Luke Wilson is Henry Poole, a man who has given up on life until his neighbor finds the face of Jesus in his stucco. Also stars Radha Mitchell, George Lopez, and Cheryl Hines. Opens August 15, 2008

 

“Mirrors” – Val Kilmer (where’s he been?) plays a security guard whose life is turned inside out when mirrors in the place he’s guarding have supernatural demons. Opens August 15, 2008

 

“Star Wars: Clone Wars” – George Lucas milks the Star Wars cash cow again but this time through the Cartoon Network and Warner Bros. Anakin and Obi Wan have a new adventure, this time during the infamous Clone Wars. Opens August 15, 2008

 

“Vicky Christina Barcelona” – Vicky (Rebecca Hall) and Christina (Scarlett Johansson) are sisters who go to Barcelona, where they meet an artist (Javier Bardem). Bardem seduces them and when his ex-wife (Penelope Cruz) shows up, things really get out-of-hand. Opens August 15, 2008

 

“The Rocker” – “Office” star Rainn Wilson is a former rock drummer-be who fills in for a high school kid after he’s suspended. Alrighty then. Opens August 20, 2008

 

“Death Race” – Briton action star Jason Statham is a NASCAR driver who is framed for the death of his wife. Punishment: he’s sent to a prison where the female warden cuts him a deal. If he can survive a no-holds-barred souped-up muscle car race, then he’s free to go. But will the warden let him survive? Also stars Ian McShane. Opens August 22, 2008

 

“Hamlet 2” – Where do I start? Steve Coogan is a failed actor turned high school drama teacher. When the school threatens to cut the drama program, he creates the play “Hamlet 2” (there’s a time machine involved). What follows is zany madness, complete with a your usual hijinks and a musical number called, “Rock Me Sexy Jesus.” Also stars Catherine Keener, Amy Poehler, David Arquette, and Elisabeth Shue. Opens August 22, 2008

“House Bunny” – Formerly titled “I Know What Boys Like,” Anna Farris is a playmate kicked outta Hef’s place and winds up in a sorority. And that would happen because…? Opens August 22, 2008

 

“Traitor” – Don Cheadle and Guy Pearce in a tale of mystery, intrigue, and espionage. Opens August 27, 2008

 

“Babylon A.D.” – Vin Diesel and Michelle Yeoh in a sci-fi movie where he has to escort her because her body contains an organism that a cult believes will create the new Messiah. Ov vey. Opens August 29, 2008

“College” – Three best friends in high school check out a college. Been there, seen that. Opens August 29, 2008

 

“Disaster Movie” – Those guys who brought you “Epic Movie” and the like are at it again. Please stop them. Opens August 29, 2008