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Bustin’ Down the Door

Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on July 2009 This documentary looks into a time of upheaval in the sport of surfing before it was even considered a sport, and its questionable transformation from laidback Hawaiian pastime to multi-billion-dollar global business. According…

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Bolt

Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on July 2009 A pampered celebrity pooch has since birth played a fearless and indestructible TV superdog who rescues his mistress every week. More obsessive-compulsive than Hachiko, Bolt lives on-set and actually believes he has superpowers….

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Death at a Funeral

Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on July 2009 This dark British farce by off-kilter Yank director Frank Oz (In & Out, Bowfinger) starts out—what’s the word?—frightfully slowly. But have patience, because it’s just calmly introducing you to its characters and building…

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Miracle at St. Anna

Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on July 2009 Normally excellent director Spike Lee lets his passion get in the way of his filmmaking with this leaden, poorly focused, 2:40-long would-be epic about the 92nd Infantry, the “Buffalo Soldiers,” black men fighting…

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El Cantante

Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on July 2009 The music’s irresistible; the story, another biopic about another superstar junkie, is not. Hector Lavoe was a legend who is credited with blending Latin, jazz and pure New York vibrancy to create salsa….

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Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs

Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on July 2009 “Put some dinosaurs in it,” some Fox studio exec undoubtedly decreed for the second Ice Age sequel. Until now, these mildly diverting movies had done one thing right: they’ve remained within their stated…

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Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on July 2009 Dear Metropolis (specifically Don Morton), I am an 11-year-old boy and I am absolutely disgusted by the fact that your film reviewer can give a film (Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen) a bad…

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Monsters vs. Aliens

Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on July 2009 A woman is hit by a meteorite, quickly grows to 49 feet, 11 inches tall, and is immediately snatched by a secret federal agency and incarcerated among several other misfit creatures derived from…

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Knowing

Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on July 2009 I haven’t seen a movie this grimly self-serious since M. Night Shyamalan’s last turkey. An astrophysicist (a one-and-a-half-expression Nicolas Cage) retrieves from a time capsule a random list of numbers that he decodes…

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Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on July 2009 As the nearly adult Harry and his pals Ron and Hermione begin their sixth year at Hogwarts, Harry obtains a helpfully annotated Potions textbook that once belonged to the mysterious title prince, and…

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Sunshine Cleaning

Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on July 2009 Rose is a disillusioned, single-mother, 30-something ex-cheerleader now cleaning houses. Her laidback sister Norah is not really interested in looking for work. (The casting of Amy Adams and Emily Blunt in these roles…

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