We Go Way Back (2006)

We Go Way Back
Director: Lynn Shelton
Writer: Lynn Shelton
Cast: Maggie Brown, Amber Hubert, Lynn Shelton, Robert Hamilton Wright, Aaron Blakely, Alycia Delmore, Matthew M. Bianchi, Basil Harris
Seen on: 10.4.2021

Plot:
Kate (Amber Hubert) is an actress, hoping to finally get her break, but so far mostly just running errands for her theater. On her 23rd birthday, she opens a letter that she wrote to herself when she was 13 (Maggie Brown). The hopeful words of the letter stand in stark contrast to the feeling of being stuck that Kate has at the moment. Even when the theater director (Robert Hamilton Wright) finally offers Kate a leading role, it doesn’t feel quite as satisfying as Kate had hoped. And so her 13-year-old self keeps haunting her.

We Go Way Back is a captivating mix of sad and funny that gives us a thoughtful portrayal of an unhappy young woman without descending completely into doom and gloom. I really enjoyed it.

The film poster showing Kate-at-23 (Amber Hubert) and Kate-at-13 (Maggie Brown).
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Fallen [Falling] (2006)

Fallen
Director: Barbara Albert
Writer: Barbara Albert
Cast: Nina Proll, Birgit Minichmayr, Kathrin Resetarits, Ursula Strauss, Gabriela Hegedüs, Ina Strnad, Georg Friedrich, Darina Dujmic, Angelika Niedetzky
Seen on: 19.1.2021

Plot:
At the funeral of their former high school teacher, Alex (Ursula Strauss), Brigitte (Birgit Minichmayr), Nina (Nina Proll), Nicole (Gabriela Hegedüs) and Carmen (Kathrin Resetarits) meet each other again for the first time in years. Apart from Brigitte, they all moved away from their home town and haven’t been back in a long time. Caught in a wave of reminiscence, they are loath to part after the funeral is over and instead take to exploring the area again, accompanied by Nicole’s daughter Daphne (Ina Strnad). But the trip to the past isn’t always pleasant and their relationships aren’t without tension.

Fallen is a fantastic film that explores the complex relationships of these women, brought together by circumstances in the past and in the present, but no less meaningful for that. I really loved it.

The film poster showing Alex (Ursula Strauss), Brigitte (Birgit Minichmayr), Nina (Nina Proll), Nicole (Gabriela Hegedüs) and Carmen (Kathrin Resetarits), all dressed in black with their arms spread wide, their hair blowing in the wind, at the edge of a hill.
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Skinwalkers (2006)

Skinwalkers
Director: James Isaac
Writer: James DeMonaco, Todd Harthan, James Roday Rodriguez
Cast: Jason Behr, Elias Koteas, Rhona Mitra, Natassia Malthe, Kim Coates, Sarah Carter, Tom Jackson, Matthew Knight, Barbara Gordon, Shawn Roberts, Lyriq Bent
Seen on: 20.12.2020

Content Note: cultural appropriation, racism

Plot:
Some werewolves see their condition as a curse, but some werewolves revel in the chaos and the blood that surrounds them every month. Prophecies have predicted that a boy will be the answer – he will cure werewolves. If he lives past his 13th birthday that is. While some werwolves have sworn to protect the boy, others mean to kill him before he can cure them. The boy in question is Timothy (Matthew Knight) who doesn’t even know that werewolves exist. Neither does his mother Rachel (Rhona Mitra). But when Varek (Jason Behr) come for them, they have to learn quickly. Fortunately Timothy’s uncle Jonas (Elias Koteas) and the rest of the family are werwolves themselves and know how to protect him. Nevertheless, it is not an easy job.

Skinwalkers is the kind of film you find in the bargain bin and you know it’s there for a reason, but still, it’s a werewolf film, so you go for it and then the film does exactly nothing to surpass your expectations. To say that is disappointing is a lie, but it would have been nice if it had been one of the forgotten/hidden treasures. It is not.

The film poster showing a woman's mouth filled with sharp teeth, her face is splattered with blood.
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Re-Watch: The Holiday (2006)

The Holiday
Director: Nancy Meyers
Writer: Nancy Meyers
Cast: Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet, Jude Law, Jack Black, Eli Wallach, Edward Burns, Rufus Sewell, Kathryn Hahn, John Krasinski, Shannyn Sossamon, Bill Macy
Seen on: 10.10.2020

Plot:
English Iris (Kate Winslet) is apparently the last to know that her long-time crush and colleague Jasper (Rufus Sewell) is getting married to somebody else. Frustrated, she decides to leave on short notice for the Christmas holidays and puts her house online for a house swap. Almost immediately she gets a reply from USAmerican Amanda (Cameron Diaz), a movie trailer editor who just kicked out her unfaithful boyfriend Ethan (Edward Burns) and could use a break herself. They make the change and Amanda finds herself in Iris’ quaint little cottage in the middle of nowhere, when Iris’ brother Graham (Jude Law) knocks on her door, while Iris takes up residence in Amanda’s LA mansion and meets her neighbor Arthur (Eli Wallach), an ageing script writer, as well as composer Miles (Jack Black) who comes to pick up Ethan’s stuff. The change of scenery and the new acquaintances impact both women a lot.

I have seen The Holiday many years ago – too many to remember many details, so it struck me as a good opportunity to re-watch it. And it absolutely is a wonderful RomCom, albeit not reaching its full potential. Nevertheless it was exactly the kind of fluff content I was looking for.

The film poster showing Amanda (Cameron Diaz) and Graham (Jude Law) above the film title and Iris (Kate Winslet) and Miles (Jack Black) below it.
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John Tucker Must Die (2006)

John Tucker Must Die
Director: Betty Thomas
Writer: Jeff Lowell
Cast: Brittany Snow, Ashanti, Sophia Bush, Arielle Kebbel, Jesse Metcalfe, Penn Badgley, Jenny McCarthy, Terrell J. Ramsey, Kevin McNulty, Taylor Kitsch,
Seen on: 1.12.2019

Plot:
Kate (Brittany Snow) is the new girl in school, but just like in her old school, she remains largely invisible to everyone. Things change, though, when she and the girls in question realize that John (Jesse Metcalfe), the most popular guy in school, is dating three girls at the same time. Carrie (Arielle Kebbel) is a driven overachiever, Beth (Sophia Bush) a passionate activist and Heather (Ashanti) is the popular head cheerleader. The three girls don’t usually talk to each other and so John has been able to play them all. Instead of fighting each other for John, though, Kate makes sure that all four of them work together to make John’s life a living hell. But that is easier said than done.

John Tucker Must Die is a fun film with a couple of feminist ideas, but some jokes are more miss than hit and the film ends a little disappointingly.

The film poster showing Carrie (Arielle Kebbel), Kate (Brittany Snow), Beth (Sophia Bush) and Heather (Ashanti) in black and white and a smaller image of John Tucker (Jesse Metcalfe) in color.
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Something New (2006)

Something New
Director: Sanaa Hamri
Writer: Kriss Turner
Cast: Sanaa Lathan, Simon Baker, Wendy Raquel Robinson, Golden Brooks, Taraji P. Henson, Mike Epps, Donald Faison, Alfre Woodard, Earl BillingsBlair Underwood
Seen on: 23.1.2016

Plot:
Kenya (Sanaa Lathan) knows exactly what she wants and what she wants her life to be. At the moment this means that she is focused on her career while dreaming of the perfect black guy to marry. But after spending yet another Valentine’s Day working long hours, she agrees to a blind date. Much to her surprise Brian (Simon Baker) turns out to be white, but also damn charming. Still Kenya doesn’t want to deviate from her plans, so all she does is hire Brian as her landscape architect. But will she be able to keep her distance?

Something New is a charming little film that strengthens its romance with a discussion of racism and racial relations. It’s not particularly subtle about that, but that doesn’t make it any less enjoyable.

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Re-Watch: Mission: Impossible III (2006)

Mission: Impossible III
Director: J.J. Abrams
Writer: Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci, J.J. Abrams
Based on: The TV Series
Sequel to: Mission: Impossible, Mission: Impossible II
Cast: Tom Cruise, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Billy Crudup, Ving Rhames, Michelle Monaghan, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Keri Russell, Maggie Q, Simon Pegg, Eddie Marsan, Laurence FishburneSasha Alexander, Tracy Middendorf, Aaron Paul, Timothy Omundson
Seen on: 4.8.2015

Plot:
Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) has retired from active field duty. Instead he teaches spy hopefuls and is about to marry Julia (Michelle Monaghan). But then IMF director Musgrave (Billy Crudup) contacts him: his student Lindsey (Keri Russell) was captured by blackmarket dealer Owen Davian (Philip Seymour Hoffman) and Hunt has to save her. Hunt reluctantly accepts and gets to work together with his team, consisting of Declan (Jonathan Rhys Meyers), Zhen (Maggie Q) and Luther (Ving Rhames). But the recapture goes wrong and Hunt soon finds himself in deeper than he ever expected.

Mission: Impossible III is a definite step up again after the second film (although that is not saying too much – it would have taken serious commitment to be worse than the second film). But depite the awesome cast, especially the antagonists, M:I-3 might be the film of the series that is most easily forgotten.

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See No Evil (2006)

See No Evil
Director: Gregory Dark
Writer: Dan Madigan
Cast: Glenn JacobsChristina VidalMichael J. PaganSamantha NobleSteven VidlerCecily PolsonLuke PeglerRachael TaylorPenny McNameeCraig HornerMikhael WilderTiffany Lamb
[/slash colleague cornholio reviewed it as well.]

Plot:
A few years ago police officer Williams (Steven Vidler) stumbled upon the scene of a horrific crime, finding a woman who had her eyes removed. The perpetrator is still there and Williams loses his hand to him. Now he works as a guard in a Juvenile Detention Center. They just started a new social work program and a group of delinquents is supposed to clean up the old Blackwell Hotel. But they are not the only ones at the hotel.

See No Evil was not particularly good. I could see potential in the concept but there was too much that didn’t make a whole lot of sense. At least the gore isn’t bad.

seenoevil

[SPOILERS]

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Hatchet (2006)

Hatchet
Director: Adam Green
Writer: Adam Green
Cast: Joel David Moore, Tamara Feldman, Deon Richmond, Kane Hodder, Mercedes McNab, Parry Shen, Joel Murray, Joleigh Fioravanti, Tony Todd

Plot:
Ben’s (Joel David Moore) girlfriend just broke up with him. He’s crushed so his best friend Marcus (Deon Richmond) takes him to Mardi Gras in New Orleans to take his mind off of it. But Ben would rather go on a haunted swamp tour than party. But that tour turns out to be a lot scarier and more dangerous than anticipated.

Hatchet is fun sometimes, but it’s also sexist and offensive and it didn’t do much for me in general.

hatchet

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The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006)

The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift
Director: Justin Lin
Writer: Chris Morgan
Sequel to: The Fast and the Furious; 2 Fast 2 Furious
Cast: Lucas BlackNathalie KelleyBow Wow, Brian Tee, Sung Kang, Zachery Ty BryanBrian Goodman, Vin Diesel

Plot:
After getting into mostly car-race-related trouble repeatedly, Sean (Lucas Black) is sent to Japan, where his father (Brian Goodman) is stationed. But even in Tokyo, he manages to get in trouble quickly: he falls in love with Neela (Nathalie Kelley) who is dating yakuza D.K. (Brian Tee), he starts racing again, though he doesn’t know how to drift. That’s when Han (Sung Kang) finds him and takes him under his wing.

So far The Fast and the Furious movie have been okay. The first one was fun, the second one not so much anymore. But this one just plain sucked. And its connections to the entire franchise are strenuous at best.

tokyodrift

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