Wednesday, December 18, 2002

Paranoid premonitions

Posted By on Wed, Dec 18, 2002 at 12:00 AM

Aldous Huxley: Complete Essays Vols. I-VI Robert S. Baker and James Sexton, editors Ivan R. Dee, $35 each George Orwell and Aldous Huxley shared a talent for prescience, but little else. Orwell, the son of a civil servant, worked as a colonial police officer, was wounded while fighting in a...

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There is always hope

Peter Jackson’s second installment is a masterpiece of Middle Earth.

Posted By on Wed, Dec 18, 2002 at 12:00 AM

This is balls-to-the-walls blockbuster entertainment in its purest form: action, action, action, set design, special effects, characterization, action, action, action. Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers is a pitch-perfect second act, full of dark wonder and the slow, pounding pulse of Aragorn’s unflagging hope.

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Star Trek: Nemesis

Posted By on Wed, Dec 18, 2002 at 12:00 AM

Ever since the leadership baton was officially passed from Captain Kirk (William Shatner) to Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart), the pleasure-factor of the series has been dipping with each outing. What makes the new movie and its immediate predecessors seem a little dull are the yawn-inducing fights and the seen-it-all-before special effects.

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Analyze That

Posted By on Wed, Dec 18, 2002 at 12:00 AM

This sequel to Analyze This, again directed by Harold Ramis, has almost all the same writers on board, along with many of the same tired jokes and some new tired ones too. Part 2 regurgitates and waters down many of the previous film’s successes, with a few new swings thrown in.

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Drumline

Posted By on Wed, Dec 18, 2002 at 12:00 AM

Most of the responsibility for this film’s entertainment lies with star Nick Cannon, whose confident swagger finds just the right balance between the script’s mediocre beats, the sweetness of a story about battling bands instead of gunslinger shootouts, and his character’s overly superior attitude.

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Maid in Manhattan

Posted By on Wed, Dec 18, 2002 at 12:00 AM

This Cinderella story assures us that good and decent people will somehow manage to find each other and live happily ever after. It moves along in a well-oiled manner, theoretically buoyed by the charm of its stars (Jennifer Lopez and Ralph Fiennes) and the amusing antics of its supporting cast.

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Wednesday, December 11, 2002

The Singles

Posted on Wed, Dec 11, 2002 at 12:00 AM

Catchy mod melodies from The Singles…...

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From me to you

Posted By on Wed, Dec 11, 2002 at 12:00 AM

In the otherwise forgettable Analyze This, there’s a lovely moment when the milquetoast shrink, played by Billy Crystal, daydreams about telling off a patient who is particularly whiny and self-indulgent. The outburst is clearly not for the benefit of the patient. If Robert De Niro’s mobster has forced himself...

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Let's get stoned

Posted By on Wed, Dec 11, 2002 at 12:00 AM

Out of It: A Cultural History of Intoxication Stuart Walton Harmony Books, 366 pages, $24 Drugs fuel our culture. Billions of dollars of legal and illicit substances infiltrate the mainstream and our bloodstreams to keep us alert, alive, aroused, asleep, or just addicted. Drugs alter our perceptions, both personally and...

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Miles and miles of Miles

Posted By on Wed, Dec 11, 2002 at 12:00 AM

When we already have a two-volume autobiography, eight biographies, and assorted books of commentary, recollections, and photographs, do we need yet another biography of Miles Davis? John Szwed's entry in the sweepstakes doesn't wholly answer the question, but it does demonstrate pretty conclusively that in the 11 years since his...

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