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Reviews by Cinefan

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276 reviews/ratings - 14 pages (20 reviews/ratings per page)

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Les choristes (2004)

A fine French film though relying on a predictable plotline. Jean-Baptiste Maunier is not only good looking but quite a good singer, too. He plays his part well as do the adult actors. Enchanting and moving. The film is set in 1949 so the scene where the boys are reading through Clement Mathieu's music sheets in the toilets and Mathieu comes in to retrieve them and then is accused of coming on to the boys in a sexual way would not have occurred at that time. Such matters weren't even thought about then.

The DVD extra showing how the film was made and interviewing the boys was almost as good as the film itself!

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 7 / 10
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A Christmas Carol (1999)

A fair production of Dickens's classic although Patrick Stewart doesn't come across as miserable or miserly enough for Scrooge. The great Ben Tibber plays Tiny Tim but his part is too small to enhance this film any. Also the cover on my DVD is not as attractive as the one featured here with Tibber.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 6 / 10
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A Christmas Carol (2004)

Quite a few good looking boy actors in this version with Josh Wilmott (no info on him) as the boy Scrooge and Jacob Moriarty as Tiny Tim. The film was well made though the songs were forgettable.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 5 / 10
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The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey (2007)

Another Christmas movie found in a poundshop. I have to confess to never having heard of Luke Ward-Wilkinson before. He certainly has a great dimpled smile.

The tale of a boy and his widowed mother gaining the affections of a woodcarver recluse is very well handled. Did the mother have to accompany her son to the woodcarver's house every time, or was that a nod to modern day chaperoning? At the time of the film, during the First World War, the boy would've gone to the man's house whenever he wanted happily free of today's stupid restraints.

Some of the photography is really good though aided, in parts, by some CGI effects I think. However, I must agree with a review I read that the ending seemed somewhat rushed and that the woodcarver's coming round from a taciturn recluse to an amiable person was too quickly dealt with. The reviewer even referred to the back of the DVD cover which showed them all in church singing carols possibly. A scene that wasn't in the film.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 6 / 10
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The Client (1994)

Brad Renfro does very well in this thriller movie and his relationship with the female lawyer, (Susan Sarandon), is both serious and funny. Mark Sway is a boy who has had it rough and being fatherless, considers himself the man of the family. Renfro is definitely worthy of an Oscar rating for his performance.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 7 / 10
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Cold Creek Manor (2003)

With the presence of Ryan Wilson playing Jesse Tilson I suppose we can rate this a boy film. The story of a family moving into gloomy mansion has been done before though, this time, without the obligatory ghosts. The menace is in the previous owner, Dale Massie, and the locals who seem to be in fear of him for some unexplained reason. The shocks become obvious in the end which dilutes the story's horror effect. Ryan Wilson is good in his part and gets a fair amount of screen time.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 5 / 10
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Cotolay (1966)

Whaaaat, no reviews of this movie having as it does the splendiferous talents of His French Cinematic Highness, Didier Haudepin no less?

Well, I was at a disadvantage for a start being that my knowledge of Spanish was zilch and no subtitles were provided. I just had to try and pick up on the plot as the film went along. Didier was his usual charming self as the kind, happy Cotolay. The friars certainly took a liking to him ... ! Unfortunately Didier, wonderful boy actor though he is, couldn't lift this film from the dregs surrounded as he was by adult actors of the strictly wooden variety. Didier, just striking puberty, looked great in his tunic and short skirt.

I award the film one star but Didier makes up for the other five!

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 6 / 10
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CrissCross (1992)

Not a great movie and not helped by slightly wooden acting from David Arnott. I don't suppose because a boy actor LOOKS great (like when he's riding around on his bike in those cut off shorts) that he should be awarded more stars but David certainly comes high in that area. The plot is pure Americana and I can understand why Arnott didn't make any more films. Apparently, Goldie Hawn had three boys to choose from to work with her and she chose David. Good choice.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 6 / 10
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The Cure (1995)

A wonderful boy film made all the better by being about a developing friendship between two boys which is quite rare in cinema. While not necessarily saying Brad Renfro and Joseph Mazzello should have been given Oscars I do think their nominations would've been in order. Both boys shared the acting honours in this film playing their respective parts to perfection. A storyline about a kid dying with Aids could have easily descended into mawkish sentimentality. One could possibly say it did in the hospital scenes towards the end. Overall however the director, Peter Horton, kept the plot moving on an even keel. Definitely a film to watch with the paper hankies handy! Among the classics of boy films. I just wish the DVD had extras interviewing the boys and even a bloopers reel! Instead it has zilch which, unfortunately, seems to be the way with Brad Renfro films as 'The Client' was the same.

Must Watch My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 9 / 10
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D.A.R.Y.L. (1985)

A typical all-American movie in which Barret Oliver is very good in his part as the boy robot, Daryl. Not only his acting but the fact Barret has the looks of an intelligent boy adds much to the part. The plot is far fetched to say the least but, overlooking that, the film has much of interest in it.

One might wonder why Daryl, who is a robot after all, has to be dressed when he's on the slab in the science laboratory. Also, thank heavens they didn't cast Danny Corkill in the lead who had a tendency to mumble his lines sometimes.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 7 / 10
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Danny the Champion of the World (1989)

Not the greatest of boy films but still enjoyable although lacking any of Roald Dahl's usual dark side to his stories. The real life boy and father play well against each other. I had never seen Samuel Irons in a film before. This one is almost idyllic with the villain, Robbie Coltrane, hamming up his part as the evil landowner. Good fun and pleasant.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 6 / 10
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Dark Skies (2013)

Dakota Goyo looked and acted great in 'Dark Skies' as did Kadan Rockett but the film was somewhat flawed in its plotline. The prejudiced neighbours never seemed to enquire as to why the birds only flew into the Barrett's house or why none of them noticed the bright lights when the aliens were trying to gain entry into the Barrett's household. Horror is always at its best when it takes place in some remote area and not in an urban street where you know other people are only a stone's throw away. Also there was no interview in the DVD extras with Dakota. Boo.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 6 / 10
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The Day The World Ended (2001)

Bobby Edner - who he? I had never seen or heard of this boy actor before seeing this film directed by an Englishman, Terence Gross. I thought Edner played his part well and, yes, the alien was a bit daft. I wondered if the ending was making way for a sequel.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 6 / 10
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Dear Frankie (2004)

A charming film with Frankie excellently played by Jack McElhone. The woman director manages to steer the film away from over sentimentality and instead provides us with an endearing tale of a young deaf boy and his loving mother. It is possible the plotline could come in for some criticism as being slightly implausible. Nicely filmed and nicely acted all round.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 7 / 10
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December Boys (2007)

Daniel Radcliffe did his best with the part he was given. He played 'Maps' quite movingly. Trouble was two of the boy characters were hardly developed at all and the film could have done without the religious mystique. I reckon it must have been chilly during shooting by the Australian coast because the boys are always wearing their shirts in every seaside scene. There was potential for a good plot but it was wasted by the director and screen writers. NOT a must have for a collector's shelf.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 5 / 10
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Delivering Milo (2000)

Another of those strange films with a supernatural setting. Milo, played by Anton Yelchin, is a kid who doesn't want to be born which sets off all sorts of repercussions up in Heaven. I thought Anton played his part quite well and it is an engaging little story about a boy learning the meaning of life and what it's all about. One thing, I wonder who was on the other end of Mr Gordon's phone? Albert Finney is marvellous as the high spirited though calculating soul from limbo. We could have done with less of the close-ups of Bridget Fonda!

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 7 / 10
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Dennis the Menace (1993)

One of those cute-as-a-button American movies with Mason Gamble acting exactly that. He is ably supported by veteran actor, Walter Matthau, who is wonderful as the grouchy neighbour. Also Christopher Lloyd as the menacing tramp make this a decent film.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 6 / 10
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Der Untergang (2004)

An excellent and realistic portrayal of Hitler by Bruno Ganz. I suppose this dramatic film does just scrape in as a boy movie with poor Peter played by Donevan Gunia going through horrors no boy should have to witness. I wonder if the ending was true where Traudl Junge goes off on a bike with Peter sitting on the handlebars?

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 7 / 10
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Desperate Measures (1998)

Plenty of action, in fact rather too much as the hospital is all but destroyed as homicidal Michael Keaton goes on the rampage. Joseph Cross plays his somewhat short part well as the little boy desperately in need of a bone marrow transplant. The whole thing is over the top but enjoyable all the same.

My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 6 / 10
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Diary of a Wimpy Kid (2010)

Absolutely hilarious and a wonderful performance by Zachary Gordon in the lead role as Greg the put upon kid who goes through all the problems of childhood. The dialogue was sharp and witty with Robert Capron and Grayson Russell giving great support. A long time since I've seen a boy movie as funny as this one.

In similar vein was 'How To Eat Fried Worms' BUT unlike that film, The Diary is poor on DVD extras. Only some deleted scenes. NO director's commentary and worse NO interviews with the actors or even a 'making of' feature. For that I have to deduct half a point and also half a point off for casting chubby Capron. All boy actors should be slim good-lookers. So, instead of 8 stars I can only give it 7.

Must Watch My Movie Rating: Red StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed StarRed Star 7 / 10
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