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Jay Boyar, Orlando Sentinel

  1. Danny Deckchair 2004 Balsmeyer may remind you of the guy at the party who, after one too many shots, puts a lampshade on his head. It's funny for maybe a moment -- until you realize, to your horror, that he doesn't know when to stop. full review
  2. The Forgotten 2004 You could wind up with whiplash watching this film, and that's a compliment. full review
  3. Jersey Girl 2004 Sweet and conventional, with just enough wacky Kevin Smith moments to keep it going. full review
  4. Kill Bill: Volume 2 2004 Although Vol. 2 certainly doesn't skimp on action, there's far less killing here than in Vol. 1. And as the themes deepen, the film assumes an unexpected poignancy. full review
  5. Little Black Book 2004 One of those annoyingly coy romantic comedies in which people try to improve their relationships by deceiving and investigating each other. full review
  6. Mean Girls 2004 It's that rare teen comedy that both teens and former teens can enjoy. full review
  7. The Stepford Wives 2004 A comedy that's just too erratic and goofy to qualify as satire. full review
  8. White Chicks 2004 Moronic. full review
  9. Without A Paddle 2004 This is the kind of comedy in which the aim is to make the audience cringe. full review
  10. Bad Santa 2003 The cast is resourceful enough to keep the film at least watchable throughout. full review
  11. Beyond Borders 2003 Beyond Borders should have been called Beyond Boredom. full review
  12. Brother Bear 2003 Brother Bear is bearable, but just barely. full review
  13. Cold Mountain 2003 Underneath the movie's cold surface, Cold Mountain turns out to be a volcano. full review
  14. Daddy Day Care 2003 It's pitched at kids, but adults will be guffawing too.
  15. Darkness Falls 2003 The best thing to be said for Darkness Falls is that it contains one decent piece of advice: Stay in the light. When the lights are on, after all, this movie won't be shown.
  16. Dirty Pretty Things 2003 This is the sort of film that requires your full attention -- and then amply rewards it with a wealth of nuances.
  17. The Haunted Mansion 2003 The Haunted Mansion is disappointing in just about every way. Even the plot, which seems simple enough at first, turns out to be confusing when all is revealed. full review
  18. The Human Stain 2003 When Kidman's on screen, the film catches fire. Otherwise, it remains unignited. full review
  19. Kill Bill: Volume 1 2003 Kill Bill would be the easiest thing in the world to dismiss if it weren't so much nasty fun.
  20. Mona Lisa Smile 2003 When was the last time you saw a mainstream movie with big, flashy stars that featured a fairly sophisticated discussion of the nature of art? full review
  21. Radio 2003 It's still a tear-jerker, but it doesn't make you feel like a jerk for tearing up. full review
  22. Something's Gotta Give 2003 Nicholson and Keaton do what they can to compensate for the script's weaknesses, which is actually quite a bit. Even without age-specific dialogue to help them out, they manage to suggest a strong connection between their characters. full review
  23. Tears of the Sun 2003 Willis' performance redeems much of the film.
  24. Touching the Void 2003 For a movie like this, touching the void just isn't enough. It has to touch the audience, too. full review
  25. Under the Tuscan Sun 2003 [Wells] rushes the film ... from episode to episode -- some of which work and some of which don't.
  26. Uptown Girls 2003 Not an especially raucous comedy, but it is an unfunny, rhythmless one.
  27. The Dancer Upstairs 2002 The Dancer Upstairs is, like its director, sleek, mysterious and intelligent. But until its last-half hour or so, it is also, unfortunately, mind-numbing.
  28. The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys 2002 Although fairly involving as far as it goes, the film doesn't end up having much that is fresh to say about growing up Catholic or, really, anything.
  29. The Hours 2002 A moving essay about the specter of death, especially suicide.
  30. The Importance of Being Earnest 2002 The ingenuity that Parker displays in freshening the play is almost in a class with that of Wilde himself.
  31. Maid in Manhattan 2002 If you think that Jennifer Lopez has shown poor judgment in planning to marry Ben Affleck, wait till you see Maid in Manhattan.
  32. The Master of Disguise 2002 No amount of nostalgia for Carvey's glory days can disguise the fact that the new film is a lame kiddie flick and that Carvey's considerable talents are wasted in it.
  33. Narc 2002 Finesse is certainly at a premium in Narc. What we get is brute force and a whopping load of testosterone.
  34. Paid in Full 2002 It's actually too sincere -- the crime movie equivalent of a chick flick.
  35. Pumpkin 2002 This is the sort of Pumpkin that really deserves to be smashed.
  36. Punch-Drunk Love 2002 Easily one of the best and most exciting movies of the year.
  37. Rabbit-Proof Fence 2002 Noyce trusts the power of the story to move us. He knows that, like the girls themselves, we'll find our way along Rabbit-Proof Fence.
  38. Star Trek - Nemesis 2002 Surprisingly, considering that Baird is a former film editor, the movie is rather choppy.
  39. The Sum of All Fears 2002 Watching this film, we can't shake our fears that we may be witnessing a version of our own previously unthinkable future.
  40. Tadpole 2002 A small, charming indie.
  41. Treasure Planet 2002 Has its moments, but it's pretty far from a treasure.
  42. Along Came a Spider 2001 Along Came a Spider is watchable, but that's about all.
  43. Amelie 2001 Tautou is gloriously alive in the title role.
  44. Hannibal 2001 Meandering, emotionally empty and thoroughly unsavory, it's not so much shocking as shockingly bad.
  45. Not Another Teen Movie 2001 With so many gags coming at us so fast and furiously, some of them are bound to misfire. But, hey, that's OK: There's always another gag around the corner, and chances are it'll be funny.
  46. Novocaine 2001 Plays like the sort of silly shared fantasy that a group of dental students might come up with late one night, after too much coffee and cramming for finals.
  47. The Score 2001 Spends so much time establishing a shadowy, jazzy neo-noir tone that the details of the heist are slighted and much of the excitement drains away.
  48. Shaolin Soccer 2001 May be the funniest out-and-out comedy of the summer. full review
  49. Blow Dry 2000 You find yourself liking many of these people and even sort of rooting for the Cut Above team.
  50. The Emperor's New Groove 2000 I admit I feel a little guilty to be praising a production whose aims are so thoroughly modest, but I laughed all the way through this movie.
  51. Malena 2000 Its heart is in the right place.
  52. Our Song 2000 A truly fresh performance can do wonders for a movie, and Our Song has three of them.
  53. Traffic 2000 Don't avoid Traffic. It takes you to the most amazing places.
  54. Vertical Limit 2000 Certainly a movie in which people are forced to test themselves in unpleasant situations. But the people I have in mind are the people in the audience.
  55. With A Friend Like Harry 2000 It's Lopez's understated charm in the role that ultimately makes this film as creepy as it is.
  56. The English Patient 1996 It's the sort of solemn production that is often mentioned as an Academy Award contender.This says less about the quality of the film than it does about its self-consciously lofty tone and its sense of self-importance. full review
  57. Braveheart 1995 Mel Gibson throws his whole heart into a role. No one acts with more conviction, and his errors are honest ones. full review
  58. The Usual Suspects 1995 If the pleasures of The Usual Suspects are the more superficial ones of ingenuity and style, those are abundantly available. The twists and turns of the plot are an awful lot of fun, while the ending is genuinely satisfying and surprising. full review
  59. While You Were Sleeping 1995 It's Bullock's first shot at a role in which she plays second fiddle neither to males nor special effects. And she turns out to be every bit as delightful as anyone might have expected. full review
  60. Forrest Gump 1994 The movie's technical tricks are great fun, as is its musical soundtrack, which captures the essences of the eras it traverses. But when you come right down to it, it's the oddly magnetic personality of Forrest himself that is the biggest draw. full review
  61. Legends of the Fall 1994 Just when it starts to seem as if Legends might just turn into a pretty good movie, along comes some tired, soap-opera plot device. full review
  62. Basic Instinct 1992 The harsh, politically incorrect truth about Basic Instinct is that it's a tantalizing, suspensefully correct thriller. full review
  63. A League of Their Own 1992 What does it say about today's Hollywood when the most interesting character in a movie about a women's baseball team turns out to be a man? full review
  64. Return to the Blue Lagoon 1991 Things are pretty much the same for the semi-nude kids in this movie as they were for the semi-nude kids in the first Blue Lagoon. full review
  65. The Silence of the Lambs 1991 Demme comes at Harris' material from another angle: His movie may deal with madness, but his perspective is mercifully sane. full review
  66. Ghost 1990 Ghost is one part horror picture, one part comedy, one part love story, one part murder mystery and four parts entrancing. full review
  67. The Adventures of Baron Munchausen 1989 The king is completely out-of-control, and so was Gilliam in making this film. Neither has much of a sense of proportion, but both are hard to ignore. full review
  68. Eight Men Out 1988 In an ensemble movie like this one, an actor who grabs too much of the limelight can throw everything out of focus. The cast Sayles has assembled understands the value of teamwork. full review
  69. Dirty Dancing 1987 Although the plot is sometimes implausible, the movie's music, dancing and romantic spirit carry a lot of it. In addition, Dirty Dancing has the virtues of a female main character (a bit unusual in a coming-of-age movie) and an interesting setting. full review
  70. Three Men and a Baby (3 Men and a Baby) 1987 As a sometime actor, Nimoy understands how to get good performances from the members of his cast. full review
  71. Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer 1986 The film is an honest and disturbing attempt to come to grips with the sort of modern horror that we must -- more urgently every day -- try to understand. full review

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