29 November 2011

29 Nov - "Save it for the suckers"

A Diva's Christmas Carol (TV 2000)
dir. Richard Schenkman

Vanessa Williams
Rozonda Thomas (Snow Day, 2000)
Brian McNamara (Short Circuit, 1986)
Kathy Griffin (Pulp Fiction, 1994)
Stephanie Biddle (Timeline, 2003)
Richard Jutras (The Whole Nine Yards, 2000)
Amy Sloan (The Day After Tomorrow, 2004)

I love a good Dickens adaptation, and while this was far from that, it was at least a little more fun than On Strike for Christmas. The storyline is familiar, derivative, in fact, so much so that it feels like the writers simply watched a bunch of other Christmas Carol movies instead of reading the book before they had at it. One detail that I sort of liked was that instead of a Ghost of Christmas Future (too scary!), the Diva watched an E! True Hollywood Story about her life and death. The Ghost of Christmas Present was at least symbolically accurate, because that guy's supposed to be a real hedonist, but Kathy Griffin as the Ghost of Christmas Past was way off the mark and didn't bring in anything except a bunch of stupid Kathy Griffin-style jokes. There was way too much screen time wasted here.

29 Nov - "cookies and wine"

On Strike for Christmas (TV 2010)
dir. Robert Iscove (Cinderlla, TV 1997)

Daphne Zuniga (Spaceballs, 1987)
David Sutcliffe (Half Baked, 1998)
Chelah Horsdal (X-Men: The Last Stand, 2006)
Julia Duffy (Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd, 2003)

Onward with the Christmas specials! On Strike for Christmas is about a housewife who gets sick of all the demanding holiday chores (including throwing separate parties for her husband's office and her son's friends) and goes on strike because boys just don't understand holiday cheer. The moral of the story is that when you're feeling overworked, it's totally okay to call a catering and send e-cards instead of paper cards. The other moral is that it's not a good idea to shape your entire identity contingent on your ability to perform as an ideal homemaker at Christmastime.

28 November 2011

25 Nov - "At first I did not know it was your diary. I thought it was a very sad handwritten book"

Bridesmaids (2011)
dir. Paul Feig

Kristin Wiig (Knocked Up, 2007)
Terry Crews (Middle Men, 2009)
Maya Rudolph (Gattaca, 1997)
Matt Lucas (Alice in Wonderland, 2010)
Wendi McLendon-Covey (Bewitched, 2005)
Jill Clayburgh (Love and Other Drugs, 2010)
Melissa McCarthy (Charlie's Angels, 2000)
Ellie Kemper
Michael Hitchcock (Serenity, 2005)
Joe Nunez (Rango (voice), 2011)
Steve Bannos (Pineapple Express, 2008)
Rose Byrne (X-Men: First Class, 2011)
Lynne Marie Stewart (Pee Wee's Big Adventure, 1985)

I watched Bridesmaids back around Thanksgiving time in the kitchen with my Aunt Dorothy. Apart from the very first scene and the very last scene, I didn't think that this was awkward to watch with my dear Auntie. It's possible though, that the circumstances detracted from the humorousness somewhat, because I thought this movie was supposed to be really funny, but I only thought it was sort of funny. Definitely not as funny as The Hangover.

Maybe part of the problem was in comprehension. I didn't understand all of the characters. Kristin Wiig was obviously the main character, but what's the deal with the antagonist? Did we decide she was just misunderstood or was she really conspiring against Kristin in pursuit of maid-of-honordom? Perhaps the movie would have been funnier if less emphasis had been placed on the developing relationships and more emphasis was on crazy antics unfolding, which is Apatow's usually recipe for success.

One of the things I like about Aunt Dorothy is that she makes me feel okay about watching a bawdy comedy with her. She's always been more fun than most of the other older folks in my family. When my brother and I were kids she let us watch Blackadder during family dinner parties. I didn't really understand a lot fo the jokes back then, but I think there were some pretty dodgy ones about turnips.

27 November 2011

21 Nov - "It's too bad you don't have any bad habits"

Piccadilly Jim (2006)
dir. John McKay

Sam Rockwell (Iron Man 2, 2010)
Frances O'Connor (Timeline, 2003)
Tom Wilkinson (The Last Kiss, 2006)
Brenda Blethy (Atonement, 2007)
Allison Janney (Away We Go, 2009)
Austin Pendleton (Uptown Girls, 2003)
Tom Hollander (Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, 2007)
Pam Ferris (Children of Men, 2006)
Kevin Eldon (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, 2005)

I thought this romantic comedy starring Sam Rockwell would be cute, but it actually sort of sucked despite having a super amusing premise. Piccadilly Jim is the playboy son of a wealthy socialite who falls in love with his step-cousin. Despite having never met Jim, she hates him for his roguish reputation, so to win her heart, Jim pretends to be someone else. The funny part is that in order to gain the trust of her family, Jim incognito has to pretend to impersonate himself - leading to an endless series of amusing misunderstandings.

Unfortunately something about this movie fell flat, lacked excitement, was unconvincing. Perhaps there was a lack of chemistry between the leads or too many undeveloped side characters. I wanted to like this movie, I really did. Parts of it were clever, but it still sucked, sorry.

26 November 2011

20 Nov - "He was screaming like a little girl"

The Men Who Stare at Goats (2009)
dir. Grant Heslov

George Clooney (Burn After Reading, 2008)
Ewan McGregor (Miss Potter, 2006)
Jeff Bridges (The Last Unicorn (voice), 1982)
Kevin Spacey (Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, 1997)
Stephen Lang (Avatar, 2009)
Robert Patrick (Terminator 2: Judgement Day, 1991)
Stephen Root (Rango (voice), 2011)
Tim Griffin (The Bourne Supremacy, 2004)
Nick Offerman (Stealing Harvard, 2002)
Glenn Morshower (The River Wild, 1994)
Rebecca Mader (The Devil Wears Prada, 2006)

I dunno what it is, I just didn't really like this movie either. It seems like it's been a while since I saw something that really wowed me. I'll be honest, I'm starting to lose enthusiasm for this whole blog thing. I'm starting to lose enthusiasm for a lot of things. I just didn't think it was that funny, or maybe it was just that I couldn't really get into sitting still while I was watching it.

Here's one thing that I thought could have been better, though. For most of the movie, it was ambiguous whether these guys were fooling themselves or not, but then it started to toe the line of 'no wait, we are serious about these powers' and then it wasn't so funny anymore. The mass delusion is what it makes it interesting and funny, and when Ewan McGregor's character starts buying into it--because who DOESN'T want to believe he or she has super powers?--it's even better. Honestly, the second half of the movie is a total blur.

24 November 2011

19 Nov - "I worry about what's going to happen"

Case 39 (2009)
dir. Christian Alvart (Pandorum, 2009)

Renée Zellweger (Appaloosa, 2008)
Jodelle Ferland (Girl Fight, TV 2011)
Ian McShane (Coraline (voice), 2009)
Bradley Cooper (Valentine's Day, 2010/1)
Callum Keith Rennie (Blade: Trinity, 2004)
Adrian Lester (The Day After Tomorrow, 2004)
Kerry O'Malley (The Happening, 2008)
Cynthia Stevenson (Air Bud: Golden Reciever, 1998)
Alexander Conti (Cheaper by the Dozen 2, 2005)
Mary Black (The Wicker Man, 2006)
Benita Ha (X-Men: The Last Stand, 2006)
Fulvio Cecere (Watchmen, 2009)
Colin Lawrence (Fantastic Four, 2005)
Dagmar Midcap (The Last Mimzy, 2007)
Bill Mondy (The Day the Earth Stood Still, 2008)
Andrew Arlie (Final Destination 2, 2003)
Sarah-Jane Redmond (The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, 2005)
Daniel Bacon (The Day the Earth Stood Still, 2008)
Dalias Blake (Red Riding Hood, 2011)
Phillip Mitchell

I expressed trepidation towards this movie a while ago but I decided to go for it anyway because I felt like watching a movie about possession. Turns out I might have been better served by checking out The Rite, The Last Exorcism, or finally getting around to The Exorcism of Emily Rose. This movie is about a well meaning social worker who takes in a child seemingly abused by her parents only to discover that all is not as it seems. This movie was hard to get through because Renee Zellweger sort of rubs me the wrong way, and it was one of those movies where the protagonist never does what I would do in that situation, and that just seems stupid.

The little girl was also sort of confusing because I was unclear on whether she was killing people expressly to make Renee's character unhappy or just to manipulate her into playing happy family or just because she was crazy demon-spawn. It was also unclear why she was so desperate to have a loving caretaker.

The ending was hectic, it seems that the evil was defeated, but is the social worker going to prison now? What will the official report say? I'd also like to say that I feel a lot of this was lifted from old episodes of the X-files, especially the parts where the adults are forced to cater to the untenable whims of an implacable child.

On the other hand, it was interesting to see how the possession theme was treated without any religious overtones. There was no priest or exorcism or ceremonies. The kid was just a demon. Case closed. It's true enough that the exorcism narrative has been beaten to death, but I'm not sure the attempt to circumvent those themes was effective here. One thing that religion always gives us in movies is the potential for redemption. In Case 39, not only was the child destroyed, but it seems that the heroine is also slated for demise, as is everyone else the girl came into contact with. I don't really enjoy it when a movie doesn't have any winners.

23 November 2011

18 Nov - "Not everybody can afford security"

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest (2009)
dir. Daniel Alfredson

Michael Nyqvist (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, 2009)
Noomi Rapace (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, 2009)
Lena Endre
Georgi Staykov

November 18th, I think sometime around midnight, brought me to the conclusion of the Millennium trilogy. The third installment commences after Lisbeth has been arrested for the attempted murder of her father and it is a race against time to see if the truth will prevail over corruption and iniquity.

Consequently, the film is dominated by the trial and plays out much like an episode of Law and Order, with the male protagonist Blomqvist trying to prove the veracity of Lisbeth's allegations against her father, her guardian, and psychiatrist even as Lisbeth refuses to testify in her own defense.

That's a curious point and one of the notable complexities of this character. It's almost as if she's daring the court to find her guilty, by refusing to defend herself and dressing like a caricature of a punk. You might also say that she refuses to legitimate the proceedings with her participation, and those who conspired against her rigged the evidence from the start. Why give them the satisfaction of watching you struggle in the trap they have laid?

20 November 2011

17 Nov -"She would probably bite him if he tried"

The Girl Who Played With Fire (2009)
dir. Daniel Alfredson (The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest, 2009)

Michael Nyqvist (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, 2009)
Noomi Rapace  (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo2009)
Lena Endre  (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo2009)
Georgi Stakov  (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo2009)

I was kind of in a limbo-state last weekend where getting things done wasn't really an option on the table. Sooo I watched a lot of movies. Maybe I could have written a paper or something, but I didn't. I think I liked The Girl Who Played With Fire a little better than Dragon Tattoo, but I liked Hornet's Nest least of all. It was okay, just not as good as this one. I watched them both in such quick succession, though, that as I'm trying to recall my thoughts I keep confusing them. A lot like The Empire Strikes Back, this sequel gives us a little more insight into our heroine's family and tumultuous past. I think there's a pretty basic trilogy formula that holds true this pattern.

I hear a lot of about Lisbeth Salander being such a strong female character, and I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around that, because she certainly gets victimized a lot. On the other hand, she doesn't cry or whine about it. In fact, she doesn't say that much at all. That's a king of strength, I suppose. Because shit will always be going down, but you gotta roll with the punches, that's what I always say.

19 November 2011

16 Nov - "You've had your whole fucking life to think things over"

The Shining (1980)
dir. Stanley Kubrick (A Clockwork Orange, 1971)

Jack Nicholson (The Witches of Eastwick, 1987)
Shelley Duvall (Home Fries, 1998)
Joe Turkel (Blade Runner, 1982)

My friend Cora says that The Shining was a terrible movie to choose for a date. I thought it was OK, though. I've never see The Shining and neither had my gentleman companion and it's on my list of famous movies I really ought to get around to.

You see how casually I introduce context?

Anyway, I knew enough about this movie to not be too surprised by any of the twists and turns. Although I WAS surprised by the scary naked lady scene. I didn't really get that part, was she supposed to be the murdered wife of the first caretaker? Like the little girls? But then why did her age change, and why was she covered in tattoos? Were those tattoos? I wasn't sure.

I was also hoping there would be more hedge maze featured in the movie. I'm a big fan of hedge mazes, so maybe I should be grateful that this movie didn't make them horror-filled death traps for me.

My mom says that Stephen King only writes about immature boys, and even though that isn't what The Shining is about at all, you can tell that his strength is certainly not writing about married couples. The dynamic between Shelley Duvall and Jack Nicholson was horrendous. They didn't even seem like a happy couple at the beginning. Duvall acts like an obsequious, irritating wife with no inner life, and Nicholson is an asshole husband even before he goes crazy.

In conclusion, the scenes with running and chopping were good, the dialogue not so much.

13 November 2011

12 Nov - "It's the size of the mountain!"

Behemoth (TV 2011)
dir. David Hogan

Ed Quinn
Pascale Hutton (Fantastic Four, 2005)
Cindy Busby
Jessica Parker Kennedy (Santa Baby, 2006)
Ty Olsson (Lake Placid, 1999)
William B. Davis (X-Files: Fight the Future, 1998)
Garry Chalk (Watchmen, 2009)
James Kirk (She's the Man, 2006)
Marsha Regis (Watchmen, 2009)
Michael Adamthwaite (Red Riding Hood, 2011)

Sorry no picture for this TV movie. Sometimes I have this problem where I go over to Cora's house and watch a whole dopey-doo TV movie. This one didn't even really make a lot of sense. The majority of the movie was spent wondering what all those weird tremors were, foreshadowing from X-Files' Cigarette Smoking Man, and the introduction of an endless list of side characters who propelled the plot forwards in no way whatsoever. I see what they were going for, but, man, they totally missed the mark.

It's supposed to be an interpretation of a classic mythic destruction story. Instead of just a regular scary monster, the monster is the earth itself and it's super pissed off because of...pollution, I guess.

But it takes 2 thirds of the movie for this hypothesis to be confirmed and we start to see tentacles flopping around. In the meantime our heroes are racing about the mountain looking for some sort of weapon which is mostly like a rocket launcher and the weapon exists because maybe the government knew about the monster already but it is unclear how and why they lost the weapon around some random mountain.

So the good news is, when a monster of mythic proportions the size the whole planet starts to wreak vengeance on human civilization Cthulhu/Shiva/Angry Sun God style not only will a mere rocket launcher will put a stop to that guy, but the carnage will be limited to property damage in a small mountain town. I mean, you have to shoot the rocket directly into it's mouth, but that's not really a problem from miles and miles away even if you have a helicopter right next to you.

09 November 2011

6 Nov - "Does my face scare you? ...Scares me, too."

Snow White: A Tale of Terror (1997)
dir. Michael Cohn

Sigourney Weaver (Alien, 1979)
Sam Neill (Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole (voice), 2010)
Gil Bellows (The Weather Man, 2005)
David Conrad (Wedding Crashers, 2005)
Monica Keena (Orange County, 2002)
Anthony Brophy
Chris Bauer (Fools Rush In, 1997)
Andrew Tiernan (300, 2006)

I've talked about this movie before, I'm sure of it. I'm a big fan but hardly anyone has even heard of this movie because the studio pushed it straight to video. This year there are two Snow White adaptations being released and I feel it's time for this movie to be revisited and review it's full due. It's set in Dark Ages Germany, and the Crusades along with the bubonic plague, are referenced to give it all a little bit of temporal context. As I think will prove to be the case with the upcoming films, the evil witch, played by Sigourney Weaver, is the real star of this movie. It's definitely dark, which perhaps added to it's dis-appeal back in '97 but makes it a sure-fire hit these days. It has elements of a horror film without ever quite pushing it that far. Even though I've seen this movie at least three times I still have a bit of a hard time understanding this witch character. She's definitely twisted, tormented, and the way the film portray's her magic is even a little sick without being so gory.

My criticisms are that the lead was not given to a strong enough actress, Monica Keena. Her acting is, at best, reactionary, but she effectively gets us from scene to scene. Sam Neill's role was not strong enough for his talents. There are two stars in this movie, Weaver and the Dark Forest.

08 November 2011

3 Nov - "What's the point of being a teenager if you can't dress weird"

Peggy Sue Got Married (1986)
dir. Francis Ford Coppola (The Outsiders, 1983)

Kathleen Turner (Romancing the Stone, 1984)
Nicolas Cage (Kick-Ass, 2010)
Joan Allen (Face/Off, 1997)
Kevin J. O'Connor (There Will Be Blood, 2007)
Jim Carrey (Earth Girls are Easy, 1988)
Sofia Coppola (Star Wars: Episode One - The Phantom Menace, 1999)
Helen Hunt (Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, 1985)
Lisa Jane Persky (When Harry Met Sally, 1989)
Glenn Withrow (The Outsiders, 1983)
John Carradine (The Secret of Nimh (voice), 1982)
Sachi Parker (Scrooged, 1988)

It's fortuitous that I chose to watch this movie, which has been sitting on my "I need to watch this again" list for a while now, so recently after I watched Kick-Ass and after I read this blog post which reviewed several vampire movies including the 1989 Vampire's Kiss, because I totally had to step up and defend Nicolas Cage's honor the other day and I was totally loaded up with fuel for my righteous fire.

So this dude pulls out the totally tired shtick about how Nick is a poseable action figure who can't act and I'm all like, "excuse me? Have you ever seen Leaving Las Vegas? Raising Arizona? Valley Girl?"

and then he counters with a, "Sure, his early stuff..." he was already losing steam

So I say, "Yeah, but his early stuff was GREAT, and then there's Adaptation., Matchstick Men." I'll concede that he's not at his best when he does action films or thrillers, but all actors do shitty movies for money. Nick Cage is at his best when he's playing loony, breakable men who are hanging at the end of their rope.

And so this guy goes for the ace in the hole and that's where I got him

"What about Wicker Man?"

Wicker Man is AWESOME! People love to shit on that movie because it truly truly hits that so-bad-that-it's-good sweet spot. And who puts it there? Nicolas Cage. Anyone else in that role would have hammed it up and the whole debacle would have passed like a shadow in the night. But it stays with us and stands up to multiple and giggly rewatchings because Nicolas Cage decided to go 100% whackadoodle crazy and that's why he's awesome and always will be. Match point.

I'm also a big fan of Kathleen Turner.

07 November 2011

30 Oct - "You can't use the front door now"

Kick-Ass (2010)
dir. Matthew Vaughn (Stardust, 2007)

Randall Batinkoff (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, 1992)
Xander Berkeley (Terminator 2: Judgement Day, 1991)
Nicolas Cage (Leaving Las Vegas, 1995)
Clark Duke (Superbad, 2007)
Craig Ferguson (Saving Grace, 2000)
Jason Flemyng (From Hell, 2001)
Dexter Fletcher (Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, 1998)
Tamer Hassan (Eastern Promises, 2007)
Aaron Johnson (Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging, 2008)
Corey Johnson (Saving Private Ryan, 1998)
Adrian Martinez (Before the Devil Knows You're Dead, 2007)
Christopher Mintz-Plasse (Role Models, 2008)
Chloë Grace Moretz (Bolt (voice), 2008)
Evan Peters (Sleepover, 2004)
Kenneth Simmons (My Super Ex-Girlfriend, 2006)
Mark Strong (Robin Hood, 2010)

This was a fun and entertaining movie, I'm surprised that it wasn't more popular. At least as popular as Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, which I haven't seen yet, but I hear about it all the time and I've only heard this movie in passing coversation like once, I think. The best part is that, in the sense that it's an origin story, this movie is only slightly more plausible than something like Batman or Spiderman. They don't have superpowers, but by virtue of getting the shit kicked out of him, the portagonist has metal-reinforced bones and damaged nerve endings that...allow him to take a beating with slightly more fortitude than the average bear. By the end we see the critical balance reestablished, with the creation of a more powerful force of good we also see a concurrent rise in the force of evil. Like all of our other favorite supervillains, we see the polarizing forces of good and evil repelling, even with resistance, each other like magnets.

It wouldn't surprise me if the screenwriter had referenced Joseph Campbell. Nobody really wants to become that which is overtly and inherently despicable, and yet these characters arise from the ethos and by forces out of their hands are ostracized into dark and lonely places. I'm getting too philosophical now. My point is that this movie fits an archetype, but it's a good archetype.

Nicolas Cage is in it, and he's a polarizing actor, but I've defended him before and I'll do it again because I like Nicolas Cage and I think I get what he does. It's a role that's well suited to him.

I perused a few reviews of this movies, and while overall I think it recieved a positive reaction, several negative reviews focused on how appalling it was to watch Hit-Girl, played by an 11-year old actress, behave with so much callous violence, and profanity, and also recieve a vicious beating from a grown man. On the other hand, I'm certain that they would not be so alarmed if the character was an 11 year old boy.

This review by Prairie Miller cites Kick-Ass as a shocking display of child exploitation. Part of this character has to do with shock value, I'm sure, and also the slightly comedic incongrutiy that Hit-Girl is a much tougher cookie than the older and masculine Kick-Ass. But more importantly I this this is the only female superhero character I've ever seen that does NOT represent exploitation. Even though she unleashes a lot of bloodshed, she's happy, she's healthy, she has an odd, but loving parent, she's strong and not sexualized - can we say that of any other heroine? Certainly not Elektra, definitely not Catwoman. Praire Miller says that depicting children being beaten in fictional scenarios is unacceptable and potentially disturbing to children in violent homes. But violence happens in the world, and this character isn't victimized, she is an agent of her own storyline. She accepts violence with dignity and retaliates from a postion of strength. That's awesome, not just for children, but even grown up children like me.

I know it's supposed to be a funny movie, and so it was, but I just wanted to talk about it this way instead.

06 November 2011

29 Oct - "They can smell the blood of a Christian man"

TrollHunter (2010)
dir. André Øvredal

Otto Jespersen
Glenn Erland Tosterud 
Johanna Mørck 
Tomas Alf Larsen

This movie was great! Another wonderful picture out of Scandinavia! This was a camcorder-style movie in the tradition of The Blairwitch Project or Cloverfield, but although the monsters do threaten our film crew of spunky young college students, there is no threat of imminent disaster as in those films. Instead of horror, the trolls are more like revelations, almost delightful in that you had not previously considered that such fantastic things could even exist.

Nevertheless, there's a modest death count.

As far as characterization goes, I was about as invested in the college kids as I was in those kids from Blairwitch, in that I can't remember their names or what they look like but I shared a mild concern for their safety in the high suspense parts. One of them begins to develop a mysterious illness which I thought was going to lead to something good but it turned out to just be rabies. I'm not sure what they intended with that, since it's not really life threatening once it's correctly diagnosed? Right? Maybe it was supposed to be foreshadowing, but I'm not sure. On the other hand, Hans, the title character, was able to achieve a little depth for me. You got the feeling he was tired and worn out from all of the killing. It seemed like he didn't really want to kill the trolls at all, which provided the element of sensitivity that the college students weren't able to provide.

On the whole, very pleasant. I will probably watch this movie again sometime, I'd like to share it with some buddies.

05 November 2011

26 Oct - "One day with the top down is better than a lifetime in a box"

Poison Ivy (1992)
dir. Katt Shea

Drew Barrymore (E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial, 1982)
Sara Gilbert (Desert Blue, 1998)
Tom Skerritt (Alien, 1979)
Leonardo DiCaprio (What's Eating Gilbert Grape, 1993)
Time Winters (A Little Princess, 1995)
Tony Ervolina (The House Bunny, 2008)

Like Devil in the Flesh, this movie is about a girl who is whackadoodle crazy and ruins a bunch of lives in pursuit of her silly exploits. Just like Rose McGowan in that movie, Drew Barrymore's character uses her sexuality and manipulative personality to get her way. She takes advantage of lonely, homely, and sexually ambiguous Sara Gilbert and weasels her way into her home and family. She seduces the father and murders the mother, intending to take her place so that they can become a family. Naturally, things don't work out as planned.

Unlike Devil in the Flesh, we don't get a back story for Ivy. She makes some allusions to a broken home, but most of the things that Ivy says are lies, so we can't believe her. All the same, Drew Barrymore can't help but play a more likable character than the perpetually unappealing Sara Gilbert, who runs after Ivy like a puppy dog and falls over backwards to give Ivy whatever she wants. Likewise, the father is a scumbag, lusting after Ivy the moment he sees her. He doesn't hesitate to have his way with Ivy the moment she gives him the opportunity, on the same bed where his wife is sleeping, no less. It's hard to like anybody in this movie. I think I prefer the sequel with Alyssa Milano.