2004 Top 10 - #8December 23, 2004
#8: Sideways : Sideways represents the most mature film to-date from director Alexander Payne, whose impressive resume already includes Election and About Schmidt. By turns poignant and hilarious, Sideways follows the misadventures of two mismatched buddies as they embark on a Bachelor's Party trip through California's wine country. It's a tough thing to effectively mix drama and comedy, yet Payne makes it seem effortless. He is also blessed with an amazing cast: Paul Giamatti (in a performance that should earn him an Oscar nomination), Thomas Hayden Church, Virginia Madsen, and Payne's wife, Sandra Oh. Sideways was one of the best films I saw at 2004's Toronto International Film Festival, and I was no less impressed and entertained when I subsequently saw it twice around the time of its opening. It's currently playing in theaters in many markets, so, if you haven't seen it, rush out and give yourself a treat.
Once, the concept of a "midnight screening" was reserved for the specialist of special blockbuster movies - films for which fans would stand in line for days or even weeks just so they could be among the first to see it on the big screen. (Remember ...
If you listen to the mainstream media, Peter Jackson's King Kong is a failure - a box office dud that has underperformed since it opened a week before Christmas. The reality, as is sometimes the case, is less dire. Kong is performing respectably. ...
Halloween Through the Years
Return with me to 1978. 30 years ago - it doesn't seem that long. Back then, the "horror movie" of today did not exist. There were, instead, "monster movies." This broad category encompassed everything from the old Universal classics (Dracula, ...