Sahara

Sahara. Really dumb, but also kinda subversive! There’s some, uh, provincialism and casual violence that doesn’t age well, but it’s fun overall. Love the big reveal moment. Normally in these sorts of adventure movies it’s a room full of treasure. Here, it’s toxic waste.

Twilight

Twilight. Hoo boy. Yeah. It’s not great. There’s a lot of hopeful staring and stewing in the tension, which I imagine (hope) comes across better in the books. Here it’s just kind of stagnant. No flame, no heat.

Uptown Girls

Uptown Girls. It’s not great but I love that it makes the effort to be better than it strictly needs to be to get the job done. Like the high-energy opening setpiece, around the room and out the building to grab a taxi. Small touches like the quick cut when looking at the mirror in horror; the Road Runner cartoon playing during the break-up scene; the use of mirrors and blocking during the ballet practice; the cuts between street fights; the train reaction shot transitioning to Coney Island; the spin of the teacup echoing the spin at the beginning of the movie. It all adds up. Brittany Murphy is completely charming.