Posts Tagged ‘Mia Farrow’

Seth Rogen in Neighbors: “You can choose your friends but not your neighbours.”

Burbs-pic-1There’s an old saying that goes, “You can choose your friends, but you can’t choose your family.” True enough, but as Hollywood has taught us, you can add neighbors to the “cannot choose” list.

This weekend in Neighbors Seth Rogen and Rose Byrne star as parents of a new baby whose quiet suburban life is uprooted when unruly frat boys led by Zac Efron and Dave Franco move in next door. “Make sure that if we’re too noisy, call me,” says Zac. “Don’t call the cops.”

When a house party spirals out of control the couple has to call the cops, thereby violating “the circle of trust” and triggering a Hatfield and McCoy’s style feud between the households.

Terrible neighbors are nothing new in Hollywood films.

In his final role John Belushi starred as earl Keese in the 1981 movie Neighbors. He plays a cranky man whose regimented residential life is turned upside down by toxic neighbors, played by his Blues Brothers cohort Dan Aykroyd and Cathy Moriarty. “We don’t want any bad blood,” says Aykroyd, “especially since we’ll be living next door to you for a long, long time.”

The situation spirals out of control, but what begins as domestic warfare between the tow households soon takes a turn when Earl realizes his new neighbors are way more fun than the button–down life he led before.

The dark comedy didn’t satisfy critics or fans of Blues Brothers era Belushi and Aykroyd, but Roger Ebert liked it, calling it, “an offbeat experiment in hallucinatory black humor,” and giving it four out of five stars

Roman Polanski’s study of nasty neighbors, Rosemary’s Baby was a much bigger hit. After moving into the beautifully gothic Bramford apartment building (exterior shots were taken at John Lennon’s old home, the Dakota Building on New York City’s Upper West Side) Rosemary Woodhouse (Mia Farrow) and husband Guy (John Cassavettes) soon discover that the folks next door Minnie and Roman Castevet (Ruth Gordon and Sidney Blackmer) have a satanic interest in their unborn child.

“Awful things happen in every apartment house,” says Rosemary.

The ‘Burbs may have the ultimate nosy neighbors. The action in the 1989 Tom Hanks movie really begins when one of the locals finds as femur bone in the backyard. “Our neighbors are murdering people,” he says. “They’re chopping them up. They’re burying them in their backyard.”

Rumours of a suburban cannibalistic cult spread through town, putting everyone on edge.

“Green sky at morning,” say Ricky Butler (Corey Feldman), “neighbor take warning.”

“Green sky at night?” asks Ray Peterson (Hanks.)

“Neighbor take flight?”


Unknown-5Arthur and the Invisibles is a whimsical kid’s movie that blends live action with animation. It’s a story about a young boy (Freddie Highmore from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) with a vivid imagination left to live on a Connecticut farm with his grandmother (Mia Farrow) while his parents search for work in the big city. The boy passes his time reading his missing grandfather’s diaries and daydreaming about the older man’s adventures in deepest Africa with two tribes—one giant, one small, known as the Minimoys.

When an evil real estate developer tries to foreclose on his grandmother’s land Arthur hatches a plan to use his grandfather’s papers and maps to uncover treasure buried on the property. With just 48 hours before bulldozers raze the house Arthur follows his grandfather’s instructions, shrinks himself to microscopic size and enters the world of the Minimoys to search for the treasure.

Here the movie gains some steam. Insects are as big as airplanes and one Rastafarian Minimoy sounds an awful lot like Snoop Dogg. Arthur, now equipped with a shock of white hair that makes him look more like Billy Idol than a superhero falls for a princess voiced by Madonna, does battle with a bad guy whose name no one dares utter and finds out why his grandfather mysteriously disappeared.

While it’s a relief to find a computer-animated movie that isn’t about talking animals on a quest to get home / back to Africa or fractured fairy tales Arthur and the Invisibles only delivers up to a point. A little over-long at 2 hours, the movie is exciting during its chase and action scenes but borrows a little too heavily from familiar fare like The Wizard of Oz and even Honey, I Shrunk the Kids to feel completely fresh.