Sunday Short Reviews

Every Sunday, Gill delves into his archive of over 800 movie reviews and randomly selects three for your enjoyment! Here are this week’s…

21 Jump Street
A surprisingly smart revamping of an 80’s TV series that both mocks and revels in its silly premise. Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum have a kind of unlikely chemistry together, and Channing Tatum will surprise you with his spot-on comedic timing. With a great mix of humour (both about the cop movie genre and the high school movie genre) and action, 21 Jump Street shocked me by delivering quality far above anything I expected of it. It may not be high art, but it’s terrific comedy. Who knew?
3.75 out of 5

Angels and Demons
The sequel to The Da Vinci Code manages to surpass the movie that came before it by featuring a more intricate mystery that, while still religious in theme, seems more plausible than its predecessor. Tom Hanks is still a bit dry as Robert Langdon, but Angels and Demons makes up for this by plunking him down in the middle of a neat little cat-and-mouse game involving the Illuminati. It’s like they took everything I enjoyed from The Da Vinci Code and trimmed all the fat off of it. The result is a tense and fast-paced mystery thriller that still maintains The Da Vinci Code’s airport-bookstore-novel feel, but utilizes historical trivia that isn’t quite so widely known as that of The Da Vinci Code, which means that even when the history in Angels and Demons is inaccurate (and it is), it isn’t so glaring that it takes you out of the movie. Plus, the Vatican City setting is a lot of fun. Overall, a decent flick.
3 out of 5


This fictionalized period comedy about the invention of the vibrator certainly delivers on its premise, and the funnier parts of the movie all involve Hugh Dancy’s protagonist, his employer played by Jonathan Pryce, and his best friend played by Rupert Everett, trying to solve the mysteries of the female orgasm. But what Hysteria boasts in comedy, it lacks in story, as I never felt there was any real conflict to drive the plot along, and what’s more, Maggie Gyllenhaal’s character just didn’t quite work for me – perhaps she wasn’t the best casting choice. In the end, this film felt like a very deliberate attempt to force a three-act story structure on a single-line description of a historical figure’s life. I’d put good money on the outline of Hysteria being little more than “An out-of-work doctor is hired at a women’s clinic, invents the vibrator, and opens a clinic of his own to treat the needy”, and the writers were left to fill in all the blanks. Still, you could do much worse than this.
3 out of 5

See you next Sunday for three more thrilling short reviews!

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