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Vanilla Sky (2001) - **
This one in a long line of unnecessary hollywood remakes of good foreign films in the last few years...Insomnia, The Ring, The Vanishing to name a few others. The trend disturbs me a little. I don't think there's anything necessarily wrong with remaking movies and there have been some great films that are loose remakes of other films, like A Fistful of Dollars and Scarface. But to me it seems unnecessary to take an already good film and do an almost exact remake of it. For me, the worst one of all time was Gus Van Sant's near exact remake of the masterpiece, Pscyho. I don't see the point, if you're just trying to copy it. I guess the point is to make money, but I'd expect a little more from established movie makers. It's obvious that the director, Cameron Crowe, has originality. He wrote, directed, and even composed original music for his last film, Almost Famous, which happens to be my favorite movie of 2000. Maybe he used up too much on that film, which was semi-autobiographical and needed an easier fix this go round...I'm really not sure. Vanilla Sky itself wasn't awful, but I find it significantly lacking on all levels in comparison to Abre Los Ojos. Vanilla Sky lacks the heart and subtleness of the original. There are a couple things I'd like to mention, but I think it gives too much away. Another downfall is that it's glammed up with big, known faces...Tom Cruise, Kurt Russell, Cameron Diaz. Even Spielberg pops in for a cameo. However, I did find it interesting to see Penélope Cruz play Sofia in both movies, but like everything good thing in Vanilla Sky, it was just ripped off from the original. I think when these lesser known foreign gems are found, they should be brought to the U.S. and given the bigger released they deserve and not just copied. Or at least if you remake a film, do something different with it and not just try and remake the same darn movie. Okay, that's my rant.

A Very Unlucky Leprechaun (1998) - **
A pretty unexciting story about an American father and daughter who move into an inherited house in Ireland. Problems are abound as the home is inhabited by an unlucky leprechaun, Lucky. Things are going bad from the start. They find out that $13,000 is owed on the house and they are likely to lose it...Molly is having problems at school. I bet without even seeing it, you can imagine how this one turns out. It's not awful, but I think most will find it a little hard to sit through. Save this one for the wee-est in the clan, as they might be well enough amused.
Rank: #13
St. Patrick's Day Movie

Vulgar (2000) - **
The obvious line is this movie lives up to it's name, but it's so true that I have to say it. This isn't a bad movie on other levels, just one that deals with subject matter that is a huge turn off to me. I won't spoil it for those who dare, but consider yourself forewarned. Probably only for the hardest core View Askew fans or people with stronger stomachs than I. It does have Kevin Smith and Jason Mewes in minor roles, not as Jay and Silent Bob. And Brian O'Hallaron as Flappy the Clown. It's one of those movies that left me feeling a bit nauseous.


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