David Vaughn

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David Vaughn  |  May 23, 2008  |  0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/052308narnia.jpg" WIDTH=200 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT>In World War II-ravaged England, four siblings discover a magical wardrobe cabinet while playing hide-and-seek in the rural country home of an elderly professor. The wardrobe is a passageway to the world of Narnia, a charming land inhabited by talking animals, dwarfs, centaurs, and giants. But the evil White Witch, Jadis (Tilda Swinton), has cursed the world into a perpetual winter. Aided by the lion Aslan (voiced by Liam Neeson), the children battle to overcome the evil White Witch's powerful hold over Narnia.

David Vaughn  |  Apr 22, 2011  |  1 comments
Precocious siblings Lucy (Georgie Henley) and Edmund (Skandar Heynes), along with their cousin Eustance (Will Poulter), are sucked into a painting and transported back to Narnia. They join King Caspian (Ben Barnes) and the noble mouse Reepicheep in a quest to rescue lords who had been lost fighting evil on a remote island. Aboard the magnificent ship The Dawn Treader the courageous voyagers travel to mysterious islands, confront mystical creatures, and reunite with the Great Lion Aslan on a mission that tests their characters to determine the fate of Narnia itself.

I haven't been a big fan of this theatrical franchise (nor the books, for that matter), but I do appreciate the family friendly message and just adore Georgie Henley's character. Fortunately, the director keeps the runtime under two hours and the brisk pacing helps keep the film more entertaining than the bloated second installment Prince Caspian. Disney decided the dump the franchise after the poor box office showing of the second film and Fox stepped in to the mix, but with a much lower budget (about $80 million less), and it shows in the finished product. The CGI isn't nearly as good and the cinematography takes a step back compared to its two predecessors.

David Vaughn  |  Jan 27, 2011  |  0 comments
Celie (Whoopi Goldberg) is a southern black woman virtually sold into a life of servitude to a brutal husband, sharecropper Albert (Danny Glover). Celie pours out her innermost thoughts in letters to her sister Nettie (Akousa Busia), but Albert has been hiding the return correspondence making Celie believe she's dead. Finally, Celie finds champions in her daughter-in-law, the take-no-shit Sofia (Oprah Winfrey) and the glamorous Shug Avery (Margaret Avery), a local entertainer.

Up until Steven Spielberg produced and directed this film, he was more known for "popular" cinematic titles such as Jaws, Indiana Jones< and E.T and he hadn't had to deal with meaty subjects such as rape, incest, and woman's rights. Ultimately the film received 11 Academy Award nominations (winning none) and Spielberg proved he was up for the challenge and went on to become one of the best director's of his generation.

David Vaughn  |  May 05, 2009  |  0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/buttonx.jpg" WIDTH=200 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT><i>"I was born under unusual circumstances…"</i> &#151; Benjamin Button

David Vaughn  |  Dec 07, 2008  |  0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/darkknight.jpg" WIDTH=200 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT>Batman (Christian Bale) continues his war on crime in Gotham City with the help of Lt. Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman) and District Attorney Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart). Determined to destroy organized crime, the three make great strides toward restoring order until a criminal mastermind know as The Joker (Heath Ledger) thrusts the city into anarchy, forcing Batman closer to crossing the fine line between hero and vigilante.

David Vaughn  |  Dec 19, 2008  |  0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/dayearthstill.jpg" WIDTH=200 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT>A flying saucer lands in Washington D.C., capturing the attention of the world. When Klaatu (Michael Rennie) and his robot Gort (Lock Martin) emerge from the vehicle, Klaatu is shot by a nervous soldier and taken to Walter Reed Hospital for recovery. He soon receives a visit from the President's envoy, Mr. Harley (Frank Conroy), who apologizes for the misunderstanding. Klaatu's only request is to meet with all of the world's leaders to deliver a message, but given the political climate, this is an impossible request.

David Vaughn  |  Apr 10, 2009  |  0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/day2008.jpg" WIDTH=200 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT>Based on the short story <i>Farewell to the Master</i> by Henry Bates, <i>The Day the Earth Stood Still</i> tries to modernize the 1951 classic with modern special effects and a new take on the story. Klaatu (Keanu Reeves) and his robot Gort emerge from a spaceship in Central Park, whereupon he's shot by a nervous soldier. Klaatu is then rushed to a military hospital for surgery, and once he's patched up, he is visited by the Secretary of Defense (Kathy Bates), who denies his request for a meeting with the UN. With the help of Dr. Helen Benson (Jennifer Connelly), Klaatu escapes, and the two end up spending the majority of their time together as all hell breaks loose.

David Vaughn  |  Jun 30, 2009  |  0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/diary.jpg" WIDTH=200 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT>Following the Nazi invasion of Amsterdam, 13-year-old Anne Frank (Millie Perkins) and her family go into hiding in the confines of an attic. Anne's remarkable account of their lives, their growing fear of discovery, and even the blooming of her first love, are intimately depicted in this extraordinary portrait of humanity.

David Vaughn  |  May 06, 2011  |  0 comments
Since college, confirmed bachelor Ronny (Vince Vaughn) and happily married Nick (Kevin James) have been through it all. Partners in an auto design firm, the pair are vying to land a dream project with Chrysler that will launch them into the big time, but when Ronny inadvertently sees Nick's wife kiss another man, he makes it his mission to get answers.

Off the top of my head, I can't think of a bad film Ron Howard has directed over his career, so I'm going to cut him some slack for this middling effort. While the two stars are supremely talented when it comes to comedy, the editing is this film is terrible and it really kills the pacing. Scenes drag on forever and there are certain subplots that could have been cut altogether (sorry Queen Latifah) that would have improved it immensely.

David Vaughn  |  Dec 31, 2008  |  0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/theduchess.jpg" WIDTH=200 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT>Georgiana Spencer (Keira Knightley) was married at 17 to a wealthy and emotionally constipated William Cavendish (Ralph Fiennes), the fifth Duke of Devonshire. He had only two requirements&#151;to provide him with a male heir and her loyalty. As Duchess of Devonshire, she becomes an integral part of London's high society and one of the most impassioned political voices of Britain in the 18th Century.