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  1. #1
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    Exclamation Just Say 'No' To Dean Kish

    The reviews of would-be film critic Dean Kish have plagued the homepage of Move-List.com for far too long. I write this simply as a lover of film who is repeatedly frustrated with the lack of competence that is expressed in his reviews. I will only use excerpts from a few of his reviews to which I take issue (citing all would be not only an exercise in futility, but in patience as well).
    I'd like to apologize in advance for citing films which only a minority of people have seen.

    Here is a brief excerpt from Mr. Kish's review of "Adaptation":

    "[Streep] uses a lot of restraint in her character, which makes her very "waspy". It's very powerful and one of the key reasons why I found the film's ending to be such a huge disappointment. I didn't for a minute believe that the Orlean character could do what is depicted."

    It's obvious that Kish never had a firm grasp on the themes which resonate throughout the film and it's climax. The point which Kauffman is trying to make is that he cannot stay true to his non-commercial ideals; in the end, to complete the script, he must make it "a Hollywood picture." Here are his closing remarks on the film:

    "In the film, Kaufman says that its demented for when a screenwriter to place himself in his own script. It sure is when he does and gives up for a predictably useless ending."

    I'd like to clear: I did not alter the above in ANY way. It was copied exactly as written. He has a real gift for coherency, no?

    Punch-Drunk Love was another film he had trouble wrapping his little brain around. As he stumbles around, unsure of what to make of the film, he comes up with this clever little analogy to try and describe Adam Sandler's character, Barry Egan:

    "It's like standing in front of three seven-foot tall sheets of fogged glass. As you peer through the glass you can make out a person on the other side but it's too hazy to make out any details. You take a "sledge hammer" and smash the first pane. As the first pane falls away you notice the image is fading. You hurry and smash the others but by the time you are done there is nothing there."

    Wait... what?

    That's okay, let's move on and see if we can find some sense of sanity in his review of "Thirteen Days":

    "Roger Donaldson [the director] did some camera tricks I have never seen in a film of this kind. There is one scene where Costner closes the door and then as he turns we enter a whole new scene. When you see this movie let me know if you think that is cool too."

    So maybe Dean Kish doesn't have a linguistic sense of coherency, or even a knowledge of film which would allow him to express his opinions credibly, but at least he has patience, and a normal human attention span, right?

    "For your average movie-goer this film will snail along and may even anger some people." - On "Traffic"

    "The beginning, ending, Crowe's charisma and Morse's pain are all quite exciting. But the middle of the film really needed more action and suspense." - On "Proof Of Life"

    "I so wanted there to be some sort of space station disaster that would at least ignite some sort of release from the film's continuous mediocrity. I have seen snails with more gusto than this film" - On "Solaris"

    Now I've saved the best for last. The indisputable summer blockbuster flop of 2001 was "Pearl Harbor." Here are a few excerpts from notable reviews:

    "Nearly every line of the script drops from the actors' mouths with the leaden clank of exposition, timed with bad sitcom beats."
    -- A.O. Scott, NEW YORK TIMES

    "A cheerfully offensive rape of history."
    -- Ian Waldron-Mantgani, UK CRITIC

    "Unfortunately, pasted around that stunning [action] sequence is a story so clogged with cliches of every description, so overblown, bombastic and agonizingly sentimental that it's hard to watch it with a straight face."
    -- Michael Wilmington, CHICAGO TRIBUNE

    Surely the chemically balanced Dean Kish agrees with critics that "Pearl Harbor" was a truly awful movie:

    "The biggest blockbuster of the season weighs in as the summer movie season officially begins... The lead actors are dashing, daring, beautiful and wonderful to watch...Pearl Harbor is the kind of film that is meaty enough to spend those inflated theatre ticket prices on. It has something for everyone."

    I suppose everyone has the right to their own opinion, however, he ends his review with one of the most ignorant statements I've ever been fortunate enough to read:

    "This American interpretation of the Japanese invasion is very respectful to the Japanese and doesn't show them as tyrants...I am not sure if this is actually the correct portrayal of Japan during this time period but it definitely won't harm anybody today."

    Important historical films influence the way a culture thinks. It's undeniable. What other explanation is there for why Mel Gibson's film "The Passion" is having such trouble finding a
    distributor. Before "Braveheart" was released, the Scottish Nationalist Party had only 3% of the vote. Today, they're the largest political party in Scotland. It absolutely is not a coincidence. And to say that an inaccurate portrayal of the Japanese "definitely won't harm anyone today" is simply obtuse.

    For everyone out there relying on Dean Kish (who I'm convinced has to be like, thirteen years old), let me expel any wisp of doubt you may have: You really are almost dead. There is hope though. There exists a world of competent film critics out there such as Elvis Mitchell, David Denby, and Michael Wilmington. Look 'em up. You'll be glad you did.


    And Briefly:

    Wrong: From "We Were Soldiers"

    "...there have been so many other films about Vietnam that are twice or three times better than this. Films like "Apocalypse Now", "Platoon", "Full Metal Jacket" and "The Killing Fields" show Vietnam as the way it probably was and with more realism."

    Right: "The Killing Fields" was set in Cambodia, not Vietnam, and centers around ethnic cleansing perpetrated by Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Wrong: From "Star Wars: Episode II - Attack Of The Clones"

    "“Clones” is a great second attempt at making a new “Empire” but its only problem is that director George Lucas has far to many love scenes interwoven in the film."

    Right: This is not George Lucas' second attempt at "The Empire Strikes Back" because he never directed the first one. Irvin Kershner directed it.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Wrong: From "Thirteen Days"

    "President Kennedy’s chief aids during that crisis were Kenny O'Donnell (Kevin Costner) and his brother Robert Kennedy (Steven Culp). "

    Right: Costner's character was fictionalized for the purposes of that movie. No such person ever existed.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Wrong: From "Sexy Beast"

    "I know as a member of the film critic community I may be the minority but I just don’t see the gem within this abuse. "

    Right: Dean Kish is not, nor has he ever been, a member of the film critic community.


    [Mod Edit: Double posted. Moved and removed duplicate]
    Last edited by Jean-Pierre Bazinet; 10-12-2003 at 12:14 PM.

  2. #2
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    Have you worked before for the CIA? They might take good use of your research capabilities.
    It is not enough 'I succeed'. Everyone else must fail.

  3. #3
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    Re: Just Say 'No' To Dean Kish

    Originally posted by Serpico

    Wrong: From "Sexy Beast"

    "I know as a member of the film critic community I may be the minority but I just don’t see the gem within this abuse. "

    Right: Dean Kish is not, nor has he ever been, a member of the film critic community.
    This is why people don't go to Movie-List for reviews. They go for trailers. BTW, the quote up there had me in stitches. I'll give you an example:
    "Two Thumbs Up!" Rodger Ebert, Hollywood Homicide
    HH was bad. Just plain bad. There really should be a vote whether Dean Kish stays or goes. And judging on the above, leave here NOW before I get my shotgun and blow your brains out!!!!

  4. #4
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    Re: Just Say 'No' To Dean Kish

    You REALLY need to go take a few rhetoric classes, because this only reads as a long "that Serpico is quite the dumbass" not "damn, he's right about Dean".
    "A celibate clergy is an especially good idea, because it tends to suppress any hereditary propensity toward fanaticism." / Carl Sagan

  5. #5
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    Gaumont,

    I'm glad you have time to sit at home and hone your rhetoric skills (judging by your flash signature, I'm guessing you're quite the socialite). Good for you. Irregardless, I read Dean Kish because he makes me laugh.

    I wrote that statement which you so fervently oppose in half an hour. I wrote it for sh*ts and giggles. Don't take it so seriously.

    At any rate, thanks for the input.

    -Serpico

  6. #6
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    I don't particularly like those reviews but I think this would work much better if it were simply a suggestion rather than an attack on a part of ML by a NEWBIE! While you may have substantiated your point - we are the people who let you view movie trailers - DO NOT **** WITH US!

    Simply put - we don't like Kish, but we don't like you a whole lot more

  7. #7
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    Aw schucks, Jake, and you barely even know me...

  8. #8
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    [Removed by Moderator -- count to 10, then post ]
    Last edited by Jean-Pierre Bazinet; 10-12-2003 at 02:50 PM.

  9. #9
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    Cool it Jake. And Serpico, there're LOTS of reviewers out there on the Internet, go pick one. I think that Kish, or anyone, by writing movie reviews to public, BECOMES "a member of the film critic community."

    Whether he is good or bad this is something else. Your interest in making Movie-List better is appreciated. But the way you handled it wasn't a best. In other words, your review of Kish doesn't qualify as a review. One rule of reviewing is constructive deconstruction. And you certainly were not constructive.
    Last edited by amr.ramadan; 10-12-2003 at 02:35 PM.

  10. #10
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    That Pearl Harbour Review is hilarious.

  11. #11
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    You know, get me advance passes and I'll gladly write reviews, I'll even do it for free!
    Are you a Mexi-CAN or a Mexi-CAN'T?

  12. #12
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    It's scary to think that someone actually analyzes movie reviews like this...
    "In case I don't see you--good afternoon, good evening and good night." -The Truman Show

  13. #13
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    Nah the worst review I ever read for Prearle Harbour said
    "<i>I think that Jerry Bruckheimer and Michael Bay did a fantastic job creating Pearl Harbor as well as depicting how people lived during World War II and what they had to go through. It feels as if 1941 came back to life. They accurately show and teach my generation what really happened at Pearl Harbor on that Sunday morning on December 7, 1941.</i>

    That's it, that's the whole review and when I pointed out the historical innacuracies in the film they said.
    "<i>um...okay?!?! they interviewed the survivors of Pearl Harbor and their stories helped create the movie! </i>
    Dean Kish is OK. I say let him write, and if you want to read them for a laugh then fine.
    Too the rest of you I say "Lighten up." this guys thread is probably meant as a bit of fun, a little stirring. Sure he doesn't know Kish, but neither do we-I think. I assure you that when you post proper reviews in a public domain you get these kind of comments, and much worse and the simple fact is you deal with them in a humerous way.

  14. #14
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    I'm glad someone understands that this was intended to be humorous. People shouldn't take it so seriously.

  15. #15
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    so... can I get free passes?

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