Original v Remake Weekend – The Italian Job (2003)

Director: F Gary Gray

Writer: Donna Powers, Wayne Powers (Screenplay) Troy Kennedy-Martin (Original Screenplay)

Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Charlize Theron, Donald Sutherland, Jason Statham, Seth Green, Yasiin Bey, Edward Norton

 

Plot: After being betrayed and left for dead in Italy, Charlie Croker and his team plan an elaborate gold heist against their former ally.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Solid but Confusing Remake

 

Story: The Italian Job starts as Charlie Croker (Wahlberg) and his tea John Bridger (Sutherland) Handsome Rob (Statham), Lyle (Green), Left Ear (Bey) and Steve (Norton) pulling of a heist in Venice, an Italian Job if you like. With the job done perfectly the escape looks like a sure thing only for Steve to turn on them leaving the rest of the team for dead.

One year later Charlie brings the team back together with Stella (Theron) John’s daughter in to get revenge on Steve by stealing the gold he stole from them.

 

Thoughts on The Italian Job

 

Characters/PerformanceCharlie is not the character we knew from the first one, he isn’t the womaniser, quick talker we loved but just a dull smart guy, Stella brings us the female character need for the heist and the daughter of Mr Bridger does work but she isn’t anything overly special. Steve is the traditional backstabber greedy villain but again doesn’t have too much about him. The rest of the crew all have the banter they need that get laughs but are no more than you need, the tech guy, the explosives guy and the getaway driver.

Performance wise, I think the word fine is going to be used a lot here, Wahlberg just doesn’t have the charisma that Michael Caine bought to the role and the whole of the ‘good’ team have fine but nothing special performances. Ed Norton on the other hand you can see doesn’t want to be there.

StoryThe story does build on the original story, it has a heist in Italy, but after that first ten minutes it turns into a revenge heist in LA making the title misleading. The story isn’t anything fresh because we have seen this style of heist movie many times before, it just rips off one of the bests ideas.

Action/CrimeThe action is fine as we are left with the final chase being the payoff for the movie but it doesn’t live up to the original. The crime is a heist so we are cheering for thieve whatever happens.

SettingsThe opening setting is Italy great works for the title of the film but the rest is set in LA which doesn’t make sense.

Special EffectsThe special effects are used to show whole the heist will go but it just doesn’t look very good.

Final ThoughtsIf this was a stand-alone heist movie it would be good but nothing special but being a remake it just doesn’t work on the right levels.

 

Overall: Remake we never really needed.

Rating

 

 

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Idle Hands (1999)

idleDirector: Rodman Flender

Writer: Terri Hughes, Ron Milbauer (Screenplay)

Starring: Devon Sawa, Seth Green, Elden Hensen, Jessica Alba, Vivica A Fox, Christopher Hart, Jack Noseworthy

 

Plot: A teenage slacker’s right hand becomes possessed with murderous intent.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Dull Lacklustre Comedy Horror

 

Story: Idle Hands starts as we meet three stoner teenagers Anton (Sawa), Mick (Green) and Pnub (Henson) who live in a small town that is in the middle of a serial killer rampage. With his parents gone missing Anton thinks nothing of this before coming to the shocking conclusion the killer is inside his house.

The killer is actually his own hand which he no longer has control over and goes on to kill his best friends. Anton must find a way to defeat his own evil possessed hand get the girl Molly (Alba) and stop demon hunter Debi (Fox) from killing him.

Idle Hands is a horror comedy that plays into the simplest levels of comedy that might have worked at the time but has dated now. The whole idea of having the evil hand can’t help but make us feel like we have seen it before at a higher level in the Evil Dead 2. Nothing about this film really does come of original or memorable which disappoints throughout.

The cast are all very much over the top with the three guys being the normal nonsense teenagers while Jessica Alba is left to be the overly sexualised female lead. As for the supporting cast, we barely get to meet most of them for long enough to make an impact.

 

Overall: Horror Comedy more like horror sleep fest

Ratingcard

 

 

Scooby Doo 2; Monsters Unleashed (2004)

Director: Raja Gosnell
Writer: James Gunn
Starring: Freddie Prinze Jr, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Matthew Lillard, Linda Cardellini, Seth Green, Peter Boyle, Tim Blake Nelson, Alicia Silverstone

Story Mystery Inc are back home in Coolsville and are having a museum opened in their honor. There is one problem with the open someone is out to ruin their reputation, making mystery inc look like fakes. Fred (Prinze Jr) Daphne (Gellar) Velma (Cardellini) Shaggy (Lillard) and Scooby Doo now have to find out who is haunting the town and regain their reputations as mystery solvers.

The suspects list includes the original Black knight ghost (Boyle), the museum curator Patrick (Green) ambitious reporter Heather (Silverstone) and Jacobo (Nelson) who escaped prison. One of these has released real monster of the past including Black Knight Ghost, Pterodactyl Ghost, Tar Monster and many more legendary foes.

Verdict The fans of Scooby Doo will enjoy this compared to the first one and it has a much more real straight from the cartoon feel about it. Having it in the home town add the idea of how they got together in the movie sense rather than how it was portrayed in the cartoon series. Having a lot of the foes from the cartoon makes things have an overall fun feeling about it. All children and Scooby Doo fans Will enjoy this movie because of its simple fun and story that is easy to follow.

Best quote Shaggy ‘ We are going to die’ Daphne ‘Think positive’ Shaggy ‘we are going to die quick’

Favourite character Shaggy just funny slacker

Stand out performance Shaggy – Lillard Most of his scenes are with a computer animated dog and pulls them off well

Best moment Some of the monsters creations

Worst Moment Some silly test tubes body swapping scene

My Rating 76%