I have three new reviews up at CT Movies today–the most I’ve ever published on a given day. I reviewed Hounddog, Lakeview Terrace, and Appaloosa. Of the three, I’d recommend the latter two if you are looking for a new movie to see this weekend that isn’t Ghost Town or The Duchess. Hounddog is, well… I gave it a generous 1 out of 4 stars.
Here are some excerpts from the reviews:
Hounddog (1 star): “Films as committed to obscurity as Hounddog rarely work, and in efforts to achieve artistic mystery and subtlety they frequently come across as quite heavy-handed. Here, the heavy-handedness includes a plot that is utterly predictable, characters that are offensively stereotypical, and an overall palette that tries so hard to look Southern (sepia tones, lightning bugs, humidity, whiskey, black men with spiritual wisdom) that it winds up looking like not much at all.”
Lakeview Terrace (2.5 stars): “Lakeview Terrace is like Crash in a cul-de-sac. It’s a film about race; it’s set in L.A.; it features a corrupt LAPD cop. Ultimately, it doesn’t take itself quite as seriously as Crash does, however, and instead of using car crashes as a metaphor it uses another Southern California staple: out-of-control wildfires.”
Appaloosa (2.5 stars): “As Virgil, Harris embodies a man who is in many ways a classic, John Wayne-esque western figure: grizzled and slightly brutish, but principled and with a heart of gold. He’s uneducated, but wise in the ways of the world. He frequently must ask Everett for the proper vocabulary when he is trying to make a point—words like “obsolete” and “byproduct.” Everett, meanwhile, is the quieter, double-barrel-shotgun-toting sidekick—an intelligent man who secretly wonders why we even have laws. Both are superb quick-draw gunmen, and both teeter precariously on the edge of using their talents for non-lawful purposes.”