notebook review

Notebook Reviews: DEATH BECOMES HER

Robert Zemeckis – 1992 Director Robert Zemeckis delivers a delicious black comedy with Death Becomes Her. The lead trifecta – Meryl Streep, Goldie Hawn and Bruce Willis have a great old time. Streep and Hawn chew the scenery, but Willis [...]

July 13, 2024

Notebook Reviews: MALLRATS

Kevin Smith – 1995 Writer-director Kevin Smith‘s Mallrats is a hugely entertaining – and very funny comedy. Derided on its initial release, this has so much to recommend and it stands as one of Smith’s finest efforts. [...]

July 12, 2024

Notebook Reviews: JOURNEY TO THE CENTRE OF THE EARTH

Henry Levin – 1959 This adaptation of Jules Verne’s Journey to the Centre of the Earth is an exceptional family adventure film. It really hits the spot.  Henry Levin directs with verve, creating a sense of wonder as an on-point  James [...]

July 9, 2024

Notebook Reviews: IT’S A WONDERFUL WORLD

W. S. Van Dyke – 1939 It’s A Wonderful World is an enjoyable enough (and very short) screwball chase comedy with Claudette Colbert and James Stewart. Despite it’s pedigree – written by Ben Hecht and Herman J. Mankiewicz and [...]

June 30, 2024

Notebook Reviews: TOP GUN

Tony Scott – 1986 Feel the need for speed. It’s totally preposterous and everything is style over substance, but Tony Scott‘s Top Gun is hugely captivating popcorn fare. Tom Cruise takes to the skies in this energetic aeronautical [...]

November 5, 2023

Notebook Reviews: THE CLIENT

Joel Schumacher – 1994. The Client is a handsomely mounted, but disappointingly routine thriller from director Joel Schumacher. This John Grisham adaptation is an improvement on the source material, but you can tell where the plot is heading. [...]

September 25, 2023

Notebook Reviews: ROBIN HOOD: PRINCE OF THIEVES

Kevin Reynolds – 1991 Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves is an old-fashioned Hollywood swashbuckler. Kevin Costner is on fine form as the eponymous hero in this Kevin Reynolds-directed adventure and Alan Rickman chews the scenery in his iconic turn [...]

September 24, 2023

Notebook Reviews: SNATCH

Guy Ritchie – 2000. Guy Ritchie’s Snatch is an enjoyable enough gangster flick. There’s a good cast who deliver some interesting performances – most notably the mighty Dennis Farina, Brad Pitt, Benicio del Toro and Vinnie [...]

September 23, 2023

Notebook Reviews: BATMAN & ROBIN

Joel Schumacher – 1997 The film that killed the Batman franchise. Batman & Robin isn’t as bad as you’ve heard – and it’s enjoyable enough if you look at it like an updated version of the 1960s Adam West/Burt Ward [...]

March 20, 2023

Notebook Reviews: ELIZABETH

Shekhar Kapur – 1998. Shekhar Kapur’s Elizabeth is a handsomely produced historical film. The cast is top tier with Cate Blanchett in the title role and Geoffrey Rush, Christopher Eccleston, Joseph Fiennes, John Gielgud, and Richard [...]

April 20, 2022

Notebook Reviews: BAREFOOT IN THE PARK

Gene Saks – 1967. Robert Redford and Jane Fonda make for a brilliant screen pairing in this enjoyable romantic comedy from director Gene Saks and screenwriter Neil Simon (who adapted his play for the screen). Barefoot In The Park is a hugely [...]

April 4, 2022

Notebook Reviews: MARATHON MAN

John Schlesinger – 1976. John Schlesinger‘s Marathon Man is a wonderful suspense thriller with an impressive cast –Dustin Hoffman, Laurence Olivier, Roy Scheider and William Devane.  William Goldman‘s screenplay (adapted [...]

March 3, 2022

Notebook Reviews: PRIMARY COLORS

Mike Nichols – 1998. The great Mike Nichols delivers an interesting political satire in the shape of Primary Colors. The film features an excellent cast and John Travolta, Emma Thompson, Billy Bob Thornton and Kathy Bates all dive head-first [...]

February 15, 2022

Notebook Reviews: STARGATE

Roland Emmerich – 1994.  Stargate is an enjoyable and energetic science fiction romp from Master of Disaster Roland Emmerich.  Emmerich’s adventure is derivative – Star Wars and Lawrence of Arabia are particular touchstones [...]

February 11, 2022

Notebook Reviews: U-571

Jonathan Mostow – 2000. Breakdown director Jonathan Mostow delivers and a tense and thrilling submarine thriller in U-571. The cast in this WWII adventure is excellent  – Matthew McConaughey, Harvey Keitel, Bill Paxton [...]

February 4, 2022

Notebook Reviews: TWO MUCH

Fernando Trueba – 1996. Fernando Trueba’s Two Much is a fun romantic comedy with a great starring role from Antonio Banderas. Melanie Griffith and Daryl Hannah co-star in this energetic farce which sees Banderas caught-up in a lie with [...]

January 27, 2022

Notebook Reviews: YOU’VE GOT MAIL

Nora Ephron – 1998. You’ve Got Mail is an enjoyable romantic comedy from director (and co-writer) Nora Ephron. This hit comedy is light and breezy and there’s no denying that there’s plenty of fun to be had. The film [...]

January 20, 2022

Notebook Reviews: ROMANCING THE STONE

Robert Zemeckis – 1984. Romancing The Stone is a rollicking good adventure movie with great turns from Michael Douglas, Kathleen Turner and Danny DeVito. How often do you get three star-making performances in one movie? Originally seen as an [...]

January 16, 2022

Notebook Reviews: THE BEST OF TIMES

Roger Spottiswoode – 1986.  The Best Of Times is a fun (if uneven) sports comedy with two excellent turns from Kurt Russell and Robin Williams. Roger Spottiswoode‘s film suffers a little because the drama and the laughs don’t [...]

January 15, 2022

Notebook Reviews: SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE

John Madden – 1998.  Shakespeare In Love is very enjoyable period romantic comedy-drama with an excellent cast. Both Joseph Fiennes and Gwyneth Paltrow deliver strong performances in the lead roles, but the stand-out turn is from Ben [...]

January 14, 2022

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