John Harrison

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Dinosaur Review


Weak
Leave it to Disney to finally come up with a family-friendly way to explore natural selection. Much like The Lion King's "Circle of Life," Dinosaur regales itself in survival of the fittest, only few people are going to be humming "Hakuna Matata" after this one.

For starters, Dinosaur is that rarest of Disney animation flicks which is not a musical. There's a thumping James Newton Howard score, but the only singing here comes from trumpeting iguanodons and brachiosaurs. The story, on the other hand, is typical Disney kiddie fare: Iguanodon Aladar (D.B. Sweeney) is orphaned as a wee dino-egg on a remote island, where he is raised, Tarzan-style, by a family of lemurs (er... okay). When a freak meteor strike blows the island away, along with much of the rest of the world, Aladar swims to the mainland with his lemur family on his back, where he meets up with the surviving herbivorous dinosaurs who have banded together to trek to "the nesting grounds," a Waterworld-style vale which hasn't been reduced to desert and ruins like, apparently, the rest of the earth. (And never mind the fallout; there is none...)

Continue reading: Dinosaur Review

Dinosaur Review


Weak
Leave it to Disney to finally come up with a family-friendly way to explore natural selection. Much like The Lion King's "Circle of Life," Dinosaur regales itself in survival of the fittest, only few people are going to be humming "Hakuna Matata" after this one.

For starters, Dinosaur is that rarest of Disney animation flicks which is not a musical. There's a thumping James Newton Howard score, but the only singing here comes from trumpeting iguanodons and brachiosaurs. The story, on the other hand, is typical Disney kiddie fare: Iguanodon Aladar (D.B. Sweeney) is orphaned as a wee dino-egg on a remote island, where he is raised, Tarzan-style, by a family of lemurs (er... okay). When a freak meteor strike blows the island away, along with much of the rest of the world, Aladar swims to the mainland with his lemur family on his back, where he meets up with the surviving herbivorous dinosaurs who have banded together to trek to "the nesting grounds," a Waterworld-style vale which hasn't been reduced to desert and ruins like, apparently, the rest of the earth. (And never mind the fallout; there is none...)

Continue reading: Dinosaur Review

Frank Herbert's Dune (2000) Review


Terrible
It seems that David Lynch's adaptation of Frank Herbert's epic science fiction novel Dune (1984) wasn't enough to convince people that this classic works far better on the page. At least that box office fiasco packs in some interesting Lynchian perversions. Besides, how can you go wrong with a cast that includes Patrick Stewart, Max von Sydow, and Alicia Witt as a bald, pint-sized, knife-wielding child? Let me tell you something, buddy -- you can't top that! Maybe it ain't Herbert's vision of Dune, but it's fun at parties.

So someone in the Sci-Fi Channel marketing department thought that they'd be able to create the definitive version of the novel, making much ballyhoo over it in the press. "This is the way Frank Herbert intended it!" Yes, yes, I'm sure he was precisely thinking of static, made-for-television sets lifted from Star Trek: The Next Generation, bathed in nauseating greens, oranges, and fire engine reds.

Continue reading: Frank Herbert's Dune (2000) Review

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation Review


Weak
For some reason it's incredibly maligned, but this remake of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is really no better or worse than the 2003 remake, but it's hard not to dig Renée Zellweger and Matthew McConaughey in early-career roles here. How can you not love watching Z as she climbs a roof and clings to a TV aerial to escape from a saw-wielding maniac? Or zapped with a cattle prod? And McConaughey as one of the bad guys -- playing perhaps his looniest character ever -- is a real riot. Plenty of gore (and it's passably realistic),gratiuity, and murderous babes give The Next Generation enough horror street cred to just make it passable -- and much better than its reputation.

Continue reading: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation Review

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John Harrison Movies

Dinosaur Movie Review

Dinosaur Movie Review

Leave it to Disney to finally come up with a family-friendly way to explore natural...

Dinosaur Movie Review

Dinosaur Movie Review

Leave it to Disney to finally come up with a family-friendly way to explore natural...

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