Fantastic Mr. Fox

Dan Movie Reviews

Fantastic Mr. Fox is Wes Anderson’s unique animated film adaptation that expands on the original Roald Dahl short story.  After promising never to steal squabs again, Mr. Fox (George Clooney) and his wife Felicity (Meryl Streep) live a simple life – he’s a columnist for a newspaper and they have a moody son Ash (Jason Schwartzman) – but he wants something more.  Deciding to move out of their hole in the ground, he purchases a home in a tree (against …

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Dan Movie Reviews

David Fincher’s first PG-13 film, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, is based on a short story by noted author F. Scott Fitzgerald.  A rather interesting biographically-laid out story told through flashback, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is about the life and times of a Mr. Benjamin Button (Brad Pitt) – who was “born under unusual circumstances”.  Dying from cancer in 2005, the very elderly Daisy (Cate Blanchett) has her daughter Caroline read to her from Benjamin’s diary.  Born …

The Cover of Daily Variety *UPDATED*

Dan Showbiz

Two photos that I took at the scoring session for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button were licensed by Daily Variety for their Film and TV Music issue.  Yes, I got credit (and a link to the website) – but what I didn’t realize was that not only did they use the two photographs in the article about the film, but they also used on of them – very largely – on the front cover of the magazine!  I’ll get …

The Queen

Dan Movie Reviews

If you were asked to go watch a movie about the Royal Family’s reaction to Princess Diana’s death, and how they (and newly elected Prime Minister Tony Blair) handled it, you probably would say “why? who cares?” Indeed, that was my thought too – but then everyone started talking about how good The Queen was. I really enjoyed the score (it’s probably going to be on my “Best of 2006” list), so I figured I should watch the DVD screener …

Firewall

Dan Movie Reviews

Firewall has the distinct “honor” of being the first press screening I’ve attended in 2006, and the theater wasn’t really filled. But there was a reason for that. 84 year-old Harrison Ford was last seen in the big-budget flop, Hollywood Homicide, where he played a cop investigating the slow death of his acting career. Now Ford takes the shock paddles to his career, and before you can shout “clear!”, zaps himself into the role of Jack Stanfield, a security specialist …

Syriana

Dan Movie Reviews

Written by Stephen Gaghan (Traffic), Syriana is an interesting movie about the oil industry, from the bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. all the way down to the oil workers in the field. Gaghan also directed the film, and takes a page from the intertwining storylines that Traffic did so well to show us the drug trade. Alexander Siddig, who geek-friends will remember as Lt. Bashir from “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” plays Prince Nasir Al-Subaai, the eldest son of a Sheik …

Syriana

Dan Showbiz

Today’s solo sessions for Alexandre Desplat’s Syriana were very cool. Got to meet master duduk player Djivan Gasparyan, who doesn’t read music. As such, it made it very interesting! They had two other soloists playing with him – Pedro Eustache on the ney, and Armen Ksajikian on cello. Djivan doesn’t speak English. Desplat speaks French. Pedro speaks like 73 languages. So the control room was filled with all sorts of cross-translations going on, and it was rather amusing and humbling …

Hostage

Dan Movie Reviews

Wow – two films in a row! Who would have guessed? And who would have known that this film was a really good one, too! Hostage is based on the best-selling novel by Robert Crais. Hostage negotiator Jeff Talley (Bruce Willis) has taken a job as the chief-of-police of a small Venturay county town after a crisis negotiation goes horribly wrong. He has a bit of dysfunction with his family, but things are about to get worse. Three delinquent youths …