Colin Farrell in "Home At the End of the World"
courtesy of Warner Home Video

"Colin Farrell Can Act"

Michael Cunningham wrote the book THE HOURS, which was the basis for the Nicole Kidman/Meryl Streep/Julianne Moore box office smash. He also wrote A HOME AT THE END OF THE WORLD that is now a film out on video. It stars Colin Farrell, Robin Wright Penn and Sissy Spacek.

The film tells the story of a relationship between two men and one woman. It is full of questions about love, friendship, and the search for happiness. It is a deep and complex film that will challenge your mind and your heart. 

Cunningham writes complex stories and this one is that way from the start, but it is also a very emotionally satisfying film. It charts the unexplored areas of one man's heart and makes discoveries that he does not expect.

This is Farrell's best role to date and he meets the challenge of sharing the screen with such fine actors as Spacek and Wright Penn. This is a movie to watch and to study.

Ethan Hawke and Julie Delphy are reunited in the film "Before Sunset." This is director Richard Linklater's sequel to his cult favorite "Before Sunrise." In that film Hawke and Delphy played a couple who meet, and talk, and go their separate ways. In the sequel they are reunited nine years later.

These movies are all about conversation. The dialogue provides the entertainment and the actors speak with such ease that you feel some of the conversation is ad libbed as it flows so easily. Hawke and Delphy have a definite chemistry together and it makes for the magic of the movie.

"Before Sunset" is a film that captures a moment and a mood. It should be watched intently with a special ear for the dialogue.

Nicole Kidman and Bette Midler star in the remake of the Katherine Ross/Paula Prentiss classic "The Stepford Wives." This cult classic invented the term "Stepford Wife" which now is synonymous with an empty headed, subservient being.

This new version is lush in its sets and in the bright colors of the "perfect" town. Kidman plays Joanna, a woman with a mind of her own, who is stunned when she discovers most of the Stepford wives are a throwback to the fifties and beyond. Matthew Broderick plays her mild mannered husband who appears to secretly wish she were more like these old fashioned ladies.

The movie is best at the beginning but suffers from a weak and contrived ending. On the DVD version there are some deleted scenes you will find interesting, as well as commentary from Director Frank Oz. These and other "extras" make the movie watching experience even better.

The DVD version of "Around the World In 80 Days" also has "extras" for the appreciative viewer. Any movie that features Jackie Chan has to have more than a few outtakes as well as deleted scenes. This version also has commentary by director Frank Coraci, who give some insight as to what all was involved in making this adaptation of Mike Todd's classic movie.

Chan plays the role originated by Cantinflas and Steve Coogan takes on the David Niven role. There are also many cameos in this movie just like there were in the Todd version. As the story has the characters racing around the world, they bump into these different characters.

The film doesn't have the impact of the original but for Chan fans any movie of his will do just fine.

Johnny Depp will long be remembered for his portrayal of Captain Jack Sparrow in "Pirates of the Caribbean." Fans of the film gobbled up the two-disc DVD edition that was released. Now there is a three disc DVD edition that incorporates the first two discs and adds even more footage.

This "added" disc has Johnny Depp and Geoffrey Rush talking about how they developed their characters. There are also scenes from dubbed in foreign language versions, as well as conversations about how the Disneyland ride influenced the film. These additions and even more make the third disc a special one.

Finally there is nothing like a good western to get your juices flowing. "Renegade " is a western with a lot of good actors in the cast and a strong story to keep the audiences enjoying it. Vincent Cassell, Juliette Lewis, Michael Madsen and Dijmon Honsou star in this story about a man fighting to protect his town and the people he loves.

This movie shows how the west was a place of divisions in race and culture. The forging of two civilizations was not an easy thing to attain. But when danger comes to one town, the Marshall is protective of his Indian heritage as well as his white man's role.

 

 

 

 

 

2004 Jackie K. Cooper

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