With 300 plus cable channels, Pay-per-View, DVDs for sale for under $10.00, a Blockbuster on every corner and Netflix in every mailbox, not to mention a multi-plex theater in almost every town, there are literally hundreds of movies available to the viewer every hour of the day.Â So how do you pick which movies you're going to watch?Â I'll tell you how I picked my "One-A-Day" flicks this week, and I hope you'll tell me how you picked yours!
I'm a sucker for a Broadway musical and that's why I had to see Dreamgirls, about a trio of girls who go from singing in a small town contest to the top of the pop charts.Â This movie has it all, great music, great characters, super costumes (watch them go from fifties cute to 70's disco glam) and wonderful actors.Â Eddie Murphy steals the show and I really enjoyed former Power Ranger, Keith Robinson as the long-suffering brother C.C..Â Not a huge role dramatic for Robinson, but he really caught my attention on screen.Â Â
One of my all-time favorite movies is also a musical rags to riches tale but in a very different vein and that is That Thing You DoÂ .Â Fate plays a huge part in this story of four young men from Erie, PA who hit it big in the mid-1960's with their garage band tune.Â The Wonders (as in One- Hit Wonders) go from playing at the local spaghetti place out by the airport to a spot on national TV, but when you hit the top with your first tune there's no place to go but down. An infectious soundtrack, four sweet, good-looking guys and Tom Hanks overseeing it all.Â It's a fun ride.
Sometimes I pick a movie because I remember it from my childhood and that was the case with LookerÂ .Â Just released on DVD, this 80's sci-fi thriller was written and directed by Michael Crichton and has a kicky finale that has stuck with me these past twenty-some years!Â Though it may not seem like anything special now, this movie was made with state-of-the art high tech computer graphics and was the first to use a complete CGI human being.Â Subliminal advertising, corporate conspiracies, and the dangers of technology all play a part in this unusual story.Â Not a perfect movie, but worth a look if only for villain James Coburn and Susan Dey (yes, Laurie Partridge) as supermodel Cindy.
Time was the only factor in my choosing Herbie: Fully LoadedÂ this week.Â I was flipping channels and it was the first movie I came upon that was just starting so I stayed to watch.Â Herbie, the Love Bug is back and this time his owner is Lindsay Lohan, a girl with racing in her blood and a dad who says no girls on the track.Â Michael Keaton and Matt Dillion are badly miscast as the father and villain of the piece, but "Mac" boy, Justin Long is simply charming as the underdog boyfriend.Â Digital animation was used to make Herbie more lifelike, but honestly I prefer the old fashioned effects of the 70's movies.Â Predictable but cute.
My last three movies this week were all chosen for the same reason and it's probably my top reason for picking a new flick.Â All three have actors that I've recently discovered and so I'm catching up on their other works!
Cheaper By the Dozen 2Â is a choice because of Tom Welling (Smallville's Clark Kent).Â Well, he was the reason I watched the first Cheaper by the Dozen and I fell for the movie hook, line and sinker.Â The sequel isn't quite as well done as the first but it's still filled with Steve Martin's antics, Bonnie Hunt's humorous glances and the family charm of the entire Baker clan.Â This time around they're on a family vacation that turns into a one-ups-manship contest with the "perfect" family across the lake.Â
Taylor Kitsch of Friday Night Lights is the reason I rented The CovenantÂ .Â Of course there was the added incentive of four good-looking guys and a supernatural plot (add in some songs and you'd have all my favorite things) so how could I go wrong?Â These best friends have magical powers but they've made a pact to keep them in check (why, is one of the interesting plot twists to the movie).Â So when someone starts using their powers to kill it's suspicion that threatens to tear these boys apart.Â Cool idea, great special effects (flying boys!Â Whoo hoo), wonderful creepy lighting and sets, and a neat little story.Â Not Shakespeare, but a good popcorn flick if you like your horror without a bunch of blood and gore.
My last pick of the week is a movie that stars Jared Padalecki of Supernatural!Â A teen thriller called Cry_Wolf.Â The lovely Lindy Booth stars as Dodger, leader of the pack.Â She and her bored boarding school buddies cook up a story about a serial killer on campus.Â But is it just a story or is The Wolf really behind the mysterious IM's that start popping up on their computers?Â Written to show how easily rumors can spread in this day of cell phones, IM's, and email, Dodger, Owen and their friends begin to turn on each other as they try to sort truth from lies.Â It's up the viewer to pick up the clues.Â Is it all a prank or is there a real murderer running loose.Â Make sure you get it right the first time because no one will believe you once you Cry_Wolf.
So that was my week!Â Now it's your turn.Â How do you choose what movies you watch? Â Do you make it a habit of catching the latest, talked about flicks?Â Do you pick based on actors, genre or just flip channels until something catches your fancy?Â Inquiring minds want to know.
Cynthia Boris, Movie Correspondent:
Cynthia's column, One a Day, published every Wednesday to Gather Essentials: Movies chronicles the author's attempt to watch every movie ever made, one movie and one day at a time.Â A published pop culture author and DVD reviewer, Cynthia lives in Orange County, California where she splits her time between her two favorite things - writing and the entertainment biz.
You can find all of Cynthia's columns at http://gather.com/oneaday
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