July 27th, 2010

light fantastic

I <3 Rex Reed (aka NY Observer review)

New York Observer
Someone Get Zac Efron a Better Movie!
Rex Reed

Zac Efron, the impossibly beautiful young Ben and Jerry's confection who is doing everything humanly possible to grow from Flavor of the Year to Force of the Future, stands head and shoulders above most of his peers in the get-famous business. I didn't see the High School Musicals that catapulted him to teenage royalty, but he showed real range and dedication to craft in the underrated Me and Orson Welles. Promise now turns to polish in the sincere but saccharine romance vehicle Charlie St. Cloud. The movie isn't much, but no more debate. Zac Efron can act.

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Like Brad Pitt, and Robert Redford before him, this is a young man who may have to grow a beard or otherwise disfigure himself to be taken seriously. The camera practically makes love to him, moving in for angles and emotions to make audiences swoon. Zac looking up. Zac looking down. Zac in profile. Zac with tears clouding his perfect blue eyes. Zac looking pensive. Zac looking misty-eyed. This is a crime, because there is serious evidence that he adds up to more than eye candy. The script by Craig Pearce and Lewis Colick is so sappy you want to laugh. It's even inspired by an E.E. Cummings poem about taking chances that made me gag. In fairness, it's not about video games, computer technology, screeching rock 'n' roll or teenage vampires. So my tendency is to be tolerant (and grateful). One thing that defies debate: Zac Efron is going places as an actor of value. But he deserves better movies than Charlie St. Cloud.

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Note: Just heads up... I think with reviews, I'll follow a similar pattern to before which is, I will probably focus on posting most of the major ones asap but some of the smaller ones I catch, I will save and post in those long review posts that no one really reads but I feel compelled to do since I am the unofficial self-anointed Zac Efron historian.