Posts Tagged ‘Brendan Fraser’


Richard joins Ryan Doyle and guest host Tamara Cherry of the NewsTalk 1010 afternoon show to talk about Squirt soda and the origin of the tequila-based cocktail the Paloma, and some movies to watch on the weekend, including “Black Widow” and “No Sudden Move.”

Listen to the whole thing HERE!


Richard speaks to “CTV News at Six” anchor Andria Case about the best movies and television to watch this weekend including “Black Widow” (on Disney+ with premium access), the all-star Crave film “No Sudden Move” and the Netflix slasher flick “Fear Street Part 2: 1978.”

Watch the whole thing HERE! (Starts at 37:03)


Richard joins CP24 to have a look at new movies coming to VOD, streaming services and theatres including “Black Widow” (on Disney+ with premium access), the all-star Crave film “No Sudden Move” and the Netflix slasher flick “Fear Street Part 2: 1978.”

Watch the whole thing HERE!


Richard and CTV NewsChannel morning show host Marcia MacMillan chat up the weekend’s big releases including “Black Widow” (on Disney+ with premium access), the all-star Crave film “No Sudden Move” and the Netflix slasher flick “Fear Street Part 2: 1978.”

Watch the whole thing HERE!


Richard sits in on the CFRA Ottawa morning show with host Bill Carroll to talk the new movies coming to theatres, VOD and streaming services including “Black Widow” (on Disney+ with premium access), the all-star Crave film “No Sudden Move” and the Netflix slasher flick “Fear Street Part 2: 1978.”

Listen to the whole thing HERE!


Richard joins NewsTalk 1010’s Jim Richards on the coast-to-coast-to-coast late night “Showgram” to play the game “Did Richard Crouse like these movies?” This week we talk about the Marvel family drama “Black Widow” (on Disney+ with premium access), the all-star Crave film “No Sudden Move” and the Netflix slasher flick “Fear Street Part 2: 1978.”

Listen to the whole thing HERE!

NO SUDDEN MOVE: 3 ½ STARS. “star-studded cast cuts through the script’s noise.”

“No Sudden Move,” a new Steven Soderbergh film starring Don Cheadle and Benicio del Toro and now playing on Crave, is a film noir that gets lost in its knotty plot, but is kept on track by a top-notch cast.

Set in 1954 Detroit, the action begins with Jones, a shady character played by Brendan Fraser, recruiting three low level criminals, Curt (Cheadle), Ronald (del Toro) and Charley (Kieran Culkin), for a job that pays too much to be as easy as he says it will be. They all agree, just so long as someone named Frank (Ray Liotta) won’t be involved.

Their job is to invade General Motors accountant Matt Wertz’s (David Harbour) home, keep his family quiet for an hour while he retrieves a document from his boss’s safe.

Sounds simple, but this is Detroit in 1954. Industrial espionage between the Big Three car companies is a dangerous game, and, of course, Frank is involved. “Everybody has a problem with Frank these days.”

As things spin out of control, greed kicks in and the fast cash the small-time criminals hoped to make causes big time problems.

Soderbergh immerses his characters and the viewer in a world that where secrets propel the action. No one is who they seem and motives are even murkier. It makes for a twisty-turny story that is part crime story, part social history of the spark that ignited the slow decline of Detroit.

To add to the disorientation, Soderbergh shoots the action through a fish eye lens that blurs the edges of the screen, mimicking the script’s moral fog.

“No Sudden Move” almost bites off more than it can chew. It’s occasionally clunky, with too many double-crosses and characters vying for screen time, but the star-studded cast cuts through the script’s noise with ease. The result is a caper that flier by, buoyed by surprises (including a big-name uncredited cameo), snappy dialogue and a great debt to Elmore Leonard.

Mr. Peabody & Sherman travel through time to the big screen.

mr__peabody__sherman_2014-wideBy Richard Crouse – Metro Canada

Jay Ward may not a household name, but many of the characters he created are.

As the Grand Poobah at Jay Ward Productions he produced the animated television shows that gave us Rocky & Bullwinkle, Dudley Do-Right, Peabody and Sherman and George of the Jungle among others.

His cartoons weren’t just for kids. The Los Angeles Times wrote, “The good ones, which Ward was a master at creating, worked at two levels: one direct and another wonderfully satiric.”

This weekend his characters take over the big screen in Mr. Peabody & Sherman, an animated film starring the voices of Modern Family’s Ty Burrell, Stephen Colbert and Leslie Mann.

Based on Peabody’s Improbable History segment from the Rocky and Bullwinkle Show, the movie sees the duo use the WABAC machine to ping pong through time, interacting with everyone from Marie Antoinette to King Tut to Leonardo da Vinci and Albert Einstein.

Mr. Peabody & Sherman isn’t the first film based on Ward’s characters.

In a 199 television movie (originally shot in 1988 for theatrical release) SCTV alum Dave Thomas played Boris Badenov, “world’s greatest no-goodnik.” With his partner-in-crime Natasha Fatale (Sally Kellerman) he leaves Pottsylvania for the United States to retrieve a micro-chip. TV Guide said, “as a 90-minute feature film, it’s at least 80 minutes too long,” but it’s worth a gander to see one of the rare live action performances of June Foray, the original voice of Rocky.

Brendan Fraser brought two of Ward’s characters to life, George of the Jungle and Dudley Do-Right.

George of the Jungle is a riff on Tarzan. He’s boy raised in the jungle by an ape (John Cleese) but who never mastered the art of swinging from tree to tree. Rotten Tomatoes gives it a 56% Fresh Rating, but the film remains most memorable for the catchy “George, George / George of the Jungle / Strong as he can be / Watch out for that tree,” theme song by the Presidents of the United States of America.

Two years later Fraser was back in another Ward inspired movie about a bumbling Canadian Mountie called Dudley Do-Right who “always gets his man.”

Co-starring with Sarah Jessica Parker and Alfred Molina, the story saw Dudley track his nemesis, the depraved Snidely Whiplash. Bad reviews—USA Today’s called it a “Dead-carcass spinoff of Jay Ward’s animated TV favorite.”—doomed the movie, but the character lives on as part of an amusement park ride called Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls at the Islands of Adventure theme park.

Finally, despite an big name cast—Jason Alexander, Rene Russo and John Goodman—The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle bombed at the box office despite Robert De Niro doing a take on his famous “You talkin’ to me?” speech from Taxi Driver.


FurryVengeancePlease file under obituaries:

We are gathered here today to mourn the death of the career of Brendan Fraser. In the early 1990s Mr. Fraser’s career appeared vibrant and healthy in films like “Gods and Monsters” and “Mrs. Winterbourne,” but following a career high with box office champs like “The Mummy” his career began a long, painful battle with bad material and began to look as green as the green screens it often performed in front of. With the release of “Furry Vengeance,” the battle is lost. A career, who once shared the screen with Oscar winners like Shirley MacLaine and legends like Ian McKellan, is now content work opposite angry raccoons. R.I.P. the career of Brendan Fraser.

In “Furry Vengeance” Fraser plays Dan Saunders a well meaning real estate developer who has moved his family from Chicago to the middle of nowhere to oversee the building of a subdivision. His contract is for one year, but his supposedly eco friendly, “green” boss has a different idea. He wants to clear cut the surrounding forest and build a new suburb. To prevent the destruction of their homeland the forest’s animals, led by a raccoon who fancies himself a fuzzy William Wallace, leads a campaign of psychological warfare on Saunders.

“Furry Vengeance” is as direct-to-DVD worthy a movie as will be released theatrically this year. Ten minutes in I was wishing the movie would take a sudden turn from flaccid family friendly fare into more “When Animals Attack” mode. Nothing would have pleased me more than to see the animals rise up against the filmmakers, hijack this movie and make it a true revenge film. Twenty minutes in I was wishing I had claws, like the little furry creatures in the film, so I could claw my own eyes out.

I know “Furry Vengeance” is meant for little kids, but kids deserve better than this. In a twelve month period that has given us “Fantastic Mr. Fox” and “Where the Wild Things Are,” movies that raised the bar for children’s entertainment, a return to this mush-headed-slapstick is taking a giant step backward. With the Laugh-O-Meter™ set somewhere between the hit-in-the-crotch gags of “America’s Funniest Home Videos” and a “Knock Knock” joke, it aims to amuse developing brains but it telegraphs every joke and by the time Fraser shows up in a pink track suit with the words Yum Yum on the bum, all hope is lost.

The cast is uniformly bad, but it is Fraser who makes the biggest impression. He’s acting at a level that, I’m sure, The Three Stooges would consider over-the-top. Watching this it’s hard to imagine that this is the same actor who once dazzled in “Gods and Monsters.” Perhaps my reports of his career death are, as Mark Twain once said, “greatly exaggerated,” but he has to try harder if he wants to keep his career off the critical list.

Go see (if you must) “Furry Vengeance” with low expectations, but be warned, it’s worse even than you think it is.