This week’s new releases

The Couch Potato Report
This week in the Couch Potato Report a comedy god plays the actual God and The X-Men – and women – Unite.
After showing that he had enough talent to act in dramatic films THE TRUMAN SHOW and MAN ON THE MOON slapstick comedian Jim Carrey then displayed that he couldn’t do drama in THE MAJESTIC.
Now the Canadian who gave us DUMB AND DUMBER, ACE VENTURA, LIAR LIAR and THE CABLE GUY is back doing comedy again in this week’s first film BRUCE ALMIGHTY.
Jim Carrey plays a frustrated Buffalo TV reporter who’s stuck doing puff-pieces while a lesser colleague gets the anchor job he covets.
Out of anger Bruce demands an explanation from God, who then pays him a visit and lets Bruce take over while he takes a brief vacation.
Carrey is actually much more entertaining and BRUCE ALMIGHTY is a better film before he becomes God, but bestowing Jim Carrey with godlike powers was a tremendous idea for a comedy. BRUCE ALMIGHTY won’t make you laugh non-stop, but you will laugh. It delivers the laughs that Carrey’s fans prefer over his dramatic work.
But watch carefully. you will actually see Carrey’s dramatic skills on display in a few scenes in BRUCE ALMIGHTY.
You’ll also see dramatic acting in X2: X-MEN UNITED, courtesy of Patrick Stewart and Sir Ian McKellen and Brian Cox. But it’s not the acting that made this one of the best films of 2003, its the film itself.
X2 does a fine job of picking up where the first X-MEN movie left off. It also does something else that very few sequels do these days, it’s actually better than the original.
Returning director Bryan Singer also ups the ante on Professor Xavier and the superhero mutants from the first film by pitting them against a mutant-hating scientist who’s determined to wipe out the mutant race by tricking Xavier into abusing his telepathic powers.
And if all of that sounds more like something from a comic book than a movie, well it is. In case you didn’t know, the X-MEN films are based on the comic book series of the same name.
But these films are more than comic book movies, or movies based on comic books, if you will. They are thoroughly enjoyable action films that give us characters with depth and personality.
So if that is the kind of film you like, then I hope you enjoy X2: X-MEN UNITED as much as I did. And I did!
I also enjoyed DIXIE CHICKS: TOP OF THE WORLD LIVE, just not as much as I could have. The trend these days with concert videos and DVD’s is to give us behind the scenes documentaries and only a selection of the songs sung live.
Last week I told you about the BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN AND THE E STREET BAND LIVE IN BARCELONA release where an entire 2 1/2 hour concert was featured. No cuts, no edits, no selections. Just the entire show that we would have seen had we been there.
With DIXIE CHICKS: TOP OF THE WORLD LIVE what you will see are the Chicks from Dixie on their world taming tour. What you won’t see is an entire show. In fact, even though it is called TOP OF THE WORLD LIVE, their song TOP OF THE WORLD isn’t even on the DVD. And neither is the footage of them badmouthing George W. Bush.
But let me be clear: I liked DIXIE CHICKS: TOP OF THE WORLD LIVE, and if you are a fan you’ll be happy with it too. It’s just that I wanted to see an entire concert, not selected songs.
BRUCE ALMIGHTY, X2: X-MEN UNITED and DIXIE CHICKS: TOP OF THE WORLD LIVE are available in stores right now.
Who would have guessed that a movie based on one of the theme-park rides at Disneyland would become one of the biggest films of the year. Not I, me mateys, but THE PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL was one such dichotomy.
Also next week ALIAS: THE COMPLETE SECOND SEASON, THE ALIEN QUADRILOGY and my favourite TV Show of all time finally debuts on DVD.
I’ll tell you about THE BEN STILLER SHOW, and those other movies I just mentioned next week.
Seriously, its my favourite TV Series of all-time!!
Enjoy the movies and I’ll see you on the couch!