More Movie Summaries Picks
1988's "Coming to America," which was directed by John Landis, tells the story of Akeem (Eddie Murphy), a wealthy African prince who travels to Queens, New York to find his true love. Joined by his servant, Semmi (Arsenio Hall), Akeem attempts to hold down a job at McDowell's, a McDonald's competitor, while chasing his boss's daughter, Lisa (Shari Headley).
"Charlie's Angels" is the movie version of the popular late-1970s/early-1980s television series that starred Farrah Fawcett. This 2000 action/adventure comedy starred Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore and Lucy Liu, and it was directed by McG. John Forsythe, who voiced the unseen Charlie in the television series, reprised his role in the film version.
Directed in 1999 by Bruce Beresford, "Double Jeopardy" is an action-packed film about retribution. Libby (Ashley Judd) plays a well-off, happily-married mother who is framed for murder by her con-man husband (Bruce Greenwood). While she is imprisoned, she learns the double jeopardy rule, which states that a convicted murderer can not be tried twice in court for the same crime. Since her husband was never killed in the frame-up, she is free to kill him.
Released in January 2005, "Coach Carter" is another in a long string of inspirational sports movies that highlight both the players and the coach as they strive for success on and off the court. "Coach Carter" stars Samuel L. Jackson as real-life high-school basketball phenom Ken Carter, who agrees to coach his former team. The film tells not only his story, but the personal stories of some of the players he coached.
The atmospheric, psychological thriller movie "Haunted" was released in 1995 with an R rating and starred Aidan Quinn and Kate Beckinsale. The melancholic British chiller takes place in 1928 in England, where a cynical parapsychologist has been hired to investigate the haunting of the Mariell estate. During his investigations, he learns about the dark history of the family and finds himself fighting for his sanity -- and his life -- when he learns firsthand that the ghosts are real.
Jose Rizal was a Filipino activist who was executed by the Spanish military Dec. 30, 1896. His death made him a martyr in the minds and hearts of many religious sects, and his views of nonviolent dissent were publicly embraced by the U.S. government. In 1998, Rizal's story was immortalized on film in "Jose Rizal," directed by Marilou Diaz-Abaya.
Despite the name, "Rambo," released in 2008, is actually the fourth installment of the Rambo film series. The story takes place 20 years after the events of "Rambo III." In this entry in the series, John Rambo is hired to rescue a group of missionaries who were captured by the Burmese government. The plot of the movie was intentionally written to draw attention to the real world problems that plague Burma.
"X2: X-Men United" begins several months after the final events of the first movie. A stasis has been achieved for the X-Men with Magneto (Ian McKellen) in jail, Charles Xavier's (Patrick Stewart) academy operating peacefully and the mutant race under no imminent threat. The inciting incident for the film's conflict is the attempted assassination of the President of the United States. A teleporting mutant named Nightcrawler (Alan Cumming) carries out the assassination attempt, resulting in a wave of anti-mutant sentiment around the country.
"When a Man Loves a Woman" is a dramatic story of the effects of one woman's alcoholism on her husband and children. Written by Al Franken and Ron Bass, this 1994 film earned Meg Ryan a Screen Actors Guild Award for her portrayal of the unhinged Alice Green and her difficult attempts at recovering from alcohol addiction.
"Runaway Jury" is a dramatic thriller that was released in October 2003. The film was based on the John Grisham novel of the same name. Directed by Gary Fleder, "Runaway Jury" stars John Cusack, Rachel Weisz and Hollywood heavyweights Gene Hackman and Dustin Hoffman.
"Kramer Vs. Kramer," based on a novel by Avery Corman and directed by Robert Benton ("Bonnie and Clyde," "Superman"), is a poignant drama about the toll of divorce on children and family. Released in 1979, the movie stars Dustin Hoffman as a divorced father who is struggling to take care of and win custody of his young son Billy (Justin Henry) from his estranged wife, played by Meryl Streep. The film took home five Oscars.
Many of us grew up quoting the John Hughes classic "Sixteen Candles." If you melted over Jake Ryan and laughed about Long Duk Dong, then you are probably familiar with this hit from 1984. The movie, starring a young Molly Ringwald, helped put teen movies on the map and made stars out of then-unknown actors Ringwald, John Cusack and Anthony Michael Hall.
"Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief" is an action-adventure movie set in the 21st century. The movie is about a teenage boy named Percy Jackson who discovers he is a descendant of Poseidon, the Greek god of water, and, as such, is a demi-god with certain water-related supernatural abilities. The film is based on the popular children's fantasy novel of the same name. The film's director is Chris Columbus, who directed two of the "Harry Potter" films.
"I, Robot" is a 2004 science-fiction film starring Will Smith. It is loosely based on a collection of short stories called "I, Robot," which were written in 1950 by professor and science-fiction author Isaac Asimov. The film had a substantial budget of $120 million and grossed almost $350 million worldwide, making it a box-office success. Critical reviews for this film, which was directed by Alex Proyas, were mixed.
In May 2009, Fox Studios and Marvel Comics capitalized on the success of the X-Men film franchise and released X-Men Origins: Wolverine. The film traces the life of fictional character James Howlett, played by Hugh Jackman, along his path from childhood to the point at which he becomes the superhero Wolverine.
Directed by Elia Kazan from a script by novelist John Steinbeck, the film "Viva Zapata!" follows the life of Emiliano Zapata, who staged a rebellion against president Porfirio Diaz during the Mexican Revolution in the early 1900s. Marlon Brando plays the role of Emiliano Zapata, while Anthony Quinn plays his brother, Eufemio.
Often receiving harsh criticism as a film glorifying U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War, "The Green Berets" was produced in 1968. The director and star of the film, John Wayne, desired to create the movie in response to antiwar sentiments felt throughout the United States at the time. Wayne had visited South Vietnam several years earlier and wanted to produce a film dedicated to the American Special Forces Soldiers deployed there.
"A Time to Kill" is based on John Grisham's first book. The movie is set in Mississippi and follows the trial of Carl Lee Hailey, who is played by Samuel L. Jackson. Matthew McConaughey plays his lawyer, Jake Brigance, whose small-town law practice is floundering. Jake agrees to defend Carl Lee in a case that sparks racial tension and a renewal of the Ku Klux Klan, risking his family, his reputation and his life.
"Possession" is a 2002 film starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Aaron Eckhart as two academics who develop a relationship with each other while simultaneously investigating a possible scandalous affair between two classical poets from Victorian-period England. The film is based on the novel by A.S. Byatt and is directed by Neil LaBute.
"Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves" depicts the tumultuous tale of Robin Hood's band of outlaws, who inspire the lower classes to overthrow the tyrannous Sheriff of Nottingham and his cronies. This timeless legend contains elements of romance, violence, history and class war. Intricate characters and an action-filled plot characterize this 1991 release, which was directed by Kevin Reynolds and grossed over $390 million worldwide.