CE Films - Part 9 - 2000-2001



5 Jun 2000
Film | Dir. Dominic Sena | Wr. H.B. Halicki (1974 movie) & Scott Rosenberg
Role: Raymond Calitri (criminal businessman).

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Chiclit: "This is an entertaining movie in the Bruckheimer mold, well cast, and Chris has two brief but very memorable scenes (one in the middle and another toward the end) as the Anglo-Euro baddie – without his brief, but believeable menace the premise of the film doesn't work."

Alex: "There are cars, Nicolas Cage, Angelina Jolie and Chris. The first and the last are the best things about this film. Cheaper by the dozen, but otherwise usual easy fun."

C: "But there is not enough of Chris in this movie to justify watching it, if this type of movie does not appeal (unless you are on an overseas airplane ride, which is when I first saw it)."

Conclusion: When you've got nothing better to do.

DVD Notes:
2001 "Touchstone" Region 2. English or Russian audio, English, English HOH and Scandinavian subtitles. Extras: Featurettes 'Zero to 60', 'Wild Rides', 'The Big Chase'; Making-of 'Stars on the Move'; 'Action Overload'; 'Conversations With Jerry Bruckheimer'; Music video; Biography & filmography; Theatrical trailer.

Watch: Making-of - CE/Calitri segment

aka 'Lewis & Clark And Other Great Adventurers'
7 Jun 2000
TV mini documentary series | Dir. Peter Nicholson
Role: Alexander von Humboldt (adventurer).

Video example - Gallery - IMDb - Get: Region 1 USA, UK

Alex: "Three-part BBC docudrama tells about Lewis & Clark, Alexander von Humboldt and Ernest Shackleton. It's a science popularising programme, which combines images of nature (including explicitly modern day), re-enactment of certain historical events, commentaries by various experts (f.ex. Sir David Attenborough) and unifying voice-over. Viewing it the first time, I was unimpressed, to put it mildly, but on the second one I discovered an appealing ambience, which set all the information told in a different light.

"Humboldt (1769-1859) travelled in South America from 1799 to 1804, also visiting Thomas Jefferson in USA. Alexander von Humboldt essentially paved the way for Darwin. Seeking to discover the interconnectedness of nature, he set the fundaments of plant geography, meteorology, ecology, discovered new species. It was though Humboldt's belief in unified science, bound to aesthetic experience, that left him in the dusks of history, forgotten, despite the enormous fame he enjoyed while alive.

"Humboldt holds a lecture about his experiences upon his return to Paris, there are also glimpses of him working at his desk. You have to be ready for the period garb, but while you might expect a case of dialling in a performance, CE manages to resurrect Humboldt, despite having almost nothing to work with except for his own feelings on the big questions the speech raises, such as anti-slavery remarks."

Conclusion: If you've watched this film not of scientific interest, you've passed the threshold of CE geekery.

DVD Notes:
2007 "BBC Video" Region 1. English HOH subtitles. No extras.
aka 'Following Faith'
26 Jan 2001 (Sundance Film Festival)
Film | Dir. Adam Brooks | Wr. Jennifer Egan (novel) & Adam Brooks
Role: Wolf (been-an-anarchist).
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Chiclit: "'Invisible Circus' is based on a book by Jennifer Egan which is pretty well regarded. It's a coming of age/flashback story. In 1969, San Francisco girl goes to Europe, kills herself there, 6 years later her younger sister follows her path to figure out what happened to her.

"The film takes liberties and gets a little lost unfortunately. Chris does a fine job as the Euro boyfriend, Cameron Diaz is not bad as the hippie chick, the younger sister is though terribly miscast (not sure if it was supposed to be global casting for marketing purposes or what) and looks nothing like Cameron Diaz or Blythe Danner (the Mom). Also Jordana Brewster plays the role of the younger sister as if she is sedated, she is a little too blank and uninteresting to carry the movie. I can't help but think there were several blonde haired, blue eyed actresses approximately 18-22 years of age who would have been much better choices to play the younger sister. Claire Danes or Kirsten Dunst come to mind.

"As I said, the movie wanders, the politics and motivation of the Diaz character never really pop in this movie as they should in a movie set in that era – and without the physical resemblance between the sisters, the motivation of Chris's character (he manages to get involved with both sisters) isn't really justified either."

Alex: "One scene that slightly switched me out of the film experience is when Eccleston's character tells his real name (Wolf is his nickname). Also, I would've been happy without the syrupy captains courageous angle. And the story would have benefited from expanding Wolf's character line by for example having him look for some answers too, and not simply serve as an artificial plot device – leaving it to the actor to balance it. Still, in my opinion, the film is a huge step forward if compared to the book, managing to amalgamate the original's inconsistent style and justify the historic/geographic name-dropping, as well as clarify the main ideas.

"I think the scenes between Wolf and Faith were the best, and along with steady CE's performance that's what partly saves the whole thing, but it's not quite enough."

C: "However, overall the movie is not totally bad, Chris has a very decent amount of screen time, it's a picturesque travelogue filmed on location in San Francisco, Amsterdam, Portugal and Paris. If you are looking for something not too taxing to watch this might be your cup of tea. Chris does wear a rather hideous 60's radical long hair wig which I had a hard time looking past – so be warned.

"Chris gets to do some real acting toward the end as the fate of the Diaz character is finally revealed, and if you want to see him in a more traditional romantic type role, this might be for you."

Conclusion: Not the worst, probably.

DVD Notes:
2001 "Entertainment in Video" Region 2. No subtitles. Extras: Trailer; Inters with cast; B-roll.

brief CE interview