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The Inspector Lynley Mysteries (2001-2007)

DS Barbara Havers is assigned to work with the upper-crust DI Thomas Lynley to solve murders.

Navel Gazing I have now rewatched several of these, and have refined my appreciation. The usual models for these sorts of projects is to distribute the episodes among different directors and screenwriters, assuming that the continuing characters are what matters. This series is different. The producers...

Published December 12, 2022
| Categorised as IMDB Comments, Threes |
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Thirteen Conversations About One Thing (2001)
Ask yourself if you're really happy.
Filmmaker(s): Jill Sprecher

The lives of a lawyer, an actuary, a housecleaner, a professor, and the people around them intersect as they ponder order and happiness in the face of life's cold unpredictability.

The Dancing Expositor, the Fluttering White It must be quite something to know about screenwriting and sit down to a bland sheet of paper. You can start with images, or characters or situations. You have to choose the type of thread and how you trace it,...

Published December 6, 2022
| Categorised as IMDB Comments, Threes |
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Joe Dirt (2001)
He Came. He Cleaned. He Conquered.
Filmmaker(s): Dennie Gordon

Joe Dirt is a janitor with a mullet hairdo, acid-washed jeans and a dream to find the parents that he lost at the Grand Canyon when he was a belligerent, trailer park-raised eight-year-old. Now, blasting Van Halen in his jacked-up economy car, the irrepressibly optimistic Joe hits the road alone in search of his folks.

Breathless Poopball These experiments are very tricky, working with irony to the extreme: making a character so helplessly clueless as to be endearing. Works easier with blond girls, but with things so exaggerated in the general area, most projects go too far. That was the case...

Published December 1, 2022
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How High (2001)
They've got their degrees all rolled up.
Filmmaker(s): Jesse Dylan

Multi-platinum rap superstars Redman and Method Man star as Jamal and Silas, two regular guys who smoke something magical, ace their college entrance exams and wind up at Harvard. Ivy League ways are strange but Silas and Jamal take it in a stride -- until their supply of supernatural smoke runs dry. That's when they have to start living by their wits and rely on their natural resources to make the grade.

Not Stale These things play a game, a delicate game. The idea is primarily to make fun of stereotypes while at the same time exploiting those. They satisfy the dummy watchers while making fun of them. That’s a long tradition in humour and especially ethnic humour, black...

Published November 27, 2022
| Categorised as IMDB Comments, Twos |
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How to Make a Monster (2001)
What started out as a simple game... became a virtual nightmare.
Filmmaker(s): George Huang

Video game developer Clayton Software enlists the talents of a misfit group of programmers to develop the scariest computer combat game: EVILUTION. With four weeks to bring the game to market and a million-dollar bonus on the line, they utilize a telemetry suit to render a 3-D version of the onscreen player. But when a power surge gives the hard drive a mind of its own, the suit comes to life to play the game for real and the programming team find themselves in the middle of a chilling virtual nightmare beyond their wildest imagination.

Makes Itself I have several movieland people I follow because what they do is pretty interesting. I have a (much larger) list of people that I follow casually because they show promise, or have done something interesting in the past. This little TeeVee movie popped up because...

Published November 26, 2022
| Categorised as IMDB Comments, Twos |
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The Business of Strangers (2001)
Filmmaker(s): Patrick Stettner

A dark thriller about a successful businesswoman and her young assistant who toy with a slow-witted businessman while stuck at an airport hotel.

The Disconnected. So much of life consists of invisible missed opportunities. Usually, they are invisible because what we see appears so competent that it seems only natural that it be as it is. This is such an opportunity. Our two characters here are presented competently. Everything else...

Published November 24, 2022
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Pendulum (2001)
Murder, betrayal, lies. Time reveals all.
Filmmaker(s): James D. Deck

The nature and lure of power: in Dallas, a councilman is on trial for corruption, the D.A. is running for the US Senate, a serial killer is slashing prostitutes, and a professor is murdered. Amanda Reeve is assigned to investigate the law-school killing. She hears rumors that the dead man offered women students good grades in exchange for sex. The trail leads her to two wealthy, beautiful students whose alibi is provided by a librarian. At the same time, the cops close in on the slasher. Meanwhile, Amanda misses her former lover, next in line to become D.A., and a reporter is fired for getting close to the truth about the Senate candidate. Is a cover-up or conspiracy in the works?

Primal Instinct The first howler in this is the notion that Texas hosts the “finest law school in the south,” as if it were possible — and if would matter if it was. Of course, once we are introduced to a DA running for Congress, we...

Published November 22, 2022
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Fat Girl (2001)
Filmmaker(s): Catherine Breillat

Anaïs is twelve and bears the weight of the world on her shoulders. She watches her older sister, Elena, whom she both loves and hates. Elena is fifteen and devilishly beautiful. Neither more futile, nor more stupid than her younger sister, she cannot understand that she is merely an object of desire. And, as such, she can only be taken. Or had. Indeed, this is the subject: a girl's loss of virginity. And, that summer, it opens a door to tragedy.

Sets Us Aside Brellliat drives me a little crazy. She is an observer of one small corner of life and seems incidentally a filmmaker. You get different editions of her observations on the distance of young sex across which we throw ropes. So the question is which...

Published November 13, 2022
| Categorised as IMDB Comments, Twos |
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Sex and Lucia (2001)
Filmmaker(s): Julio Medem

Various lives converge on an isolated island, all connected by an author whose novel has become inextricably entwined with his own life.

And the Story Starts Again Halfway Written reality. I had the unexpected pleasure of seeing this soon after Ruiz's Proust. Both about writers creating a life. Time folding. Narrative layers. The three sisters from 'Alice in Wonderland,' here named Alsi/Elana, Lucia (the Alice, an anagram, in fact...

Published October 31, 2022
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Ignition (2001)
He thought he was protecting her life. Instead he was saving the world.
Filmmaker(s): Yves Simoneau

A web of intrigue and conspiracy lies beneath the euphoria as the U.S. is about to put a man on the moon for the first time in over thirty years

Wet Powder, Powerful Powder This little disaster probably resulted from 9-11. I get the impression that the project was halted halfway through and was just shoved out in this form. No great loss. But it does have two interesting elements. The first is Lena Olin. I think...

Published May 17, 2022
| Categorised as IMDB Comments, Twos |
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