Siskel and Ebert Movie Reviews

Original movie reviews untainted by time!

7 thoughts on “Speed, The Lion King, The Endless Summer II, City Slickers II: The Legend of Curly’s Gold, 1994

  • I agreed with Siskel and Ebert. I loved “The Lion King”. It is my favorite Disney film as a kid. Some of the songs I like was “Just Can’t Wait To Be King”, “Hakuna Matata”, and “Can You Feel The Love Tonight” by Elton John. But I disagree what Gene said about Young Simba. He’s not as dull as Aladdin, he’s an interesting character, then when he grows up, he returns to Pride Lands and takes Scar’s place as the rightful king. Scar is a good memorable villain. Marginal thumbs up for me.

    The Lion King 3.5/4

  • Here’s what I have to say about Speed:

    A VERY exciting movie. Speed opens with a great shot outside an elevator moving down showing the opening credits. Jeff Daniels plays Harry, and I feel he could have actually played the bad guy Howard Payne instead. He does a great job though. The film is great at making you fear exactly something that could happen, but are thankful that it doesn’t. Music sounds at times a little wary, adding to the intense moments. There are some many great sarcastic moments and remarks from the characters. The fire explosion of the first bus before the main climax feels a little green screened with Jack over it but still looks dazzling. Jack has a great tough attitude, an assertive nature that I respect and love to see in movies. Jack takes someone’s car with them in it, worried it might get scratched or broken, then it follows this line: “that was a nice move, man!” The main bus chase scene is very well paced. Certain outcomes come out by surprise. The film focuses a lot on speed with running early on and a lot of driving, the title works. A scene so simple can be so exciting and the best part of the movie. I like how some of the bad guy’s reasoning for why he’s doing what he does is explained in an intense situation not by the bad guy himself. Expressions and many moments can be used in a serious situation. Great complexity in the connection to the bad guy and money, and he talks very dedicated to it. I like how a lot of the movie is focused on the climax, two-thirds of it. Harry is kind of side tracked in the middle. The bad guy’s evil laugh is a little corny and maybe is not needed. Very clever moment where they tape over the bad guy’s recording of a minute of everyone still on the bus when it secretly allows them to get off. His realization of this is great. A lot of similarity in the looks and sound of Harry and Howard (bad guy, as mentioned). To where I feel one of them could have been cast different, but they still do a great job. There’s a funny and original death. I like the use of the technique and plan used again that I will not spoil. The film ends kind of out of nowhere. There could have been a little more at the end. Another scene would’ve been better.

    A very exciting film, and I mean that to a high degree.


    • Very good, Matthew! The “bad guy,” Dennis Hopper, can always make a film more interesting. I remember seeing him in the old b/w Twilight Zone from the early 1960s, and in Apocalypse Now, in the late 1970s. Always fun to watch him perform!

      • Hey, thanks! Oh yea, I’ve heard of Dennis Hopper. He’s a very enjoyable actor!

  • Even though their Lion King review is controversial (despite it being a positive review), Roger is seemingly more enthusiastic about the film than Gene is. In his newspaper review of the film (which he gave 3.5 stars), he praised how the animators combined traditional animation with CGI, the supporting characters, particularly Scar, and even the serious tone of the film and its well-meaning. His only disappointment were the songs, with the exception of “Circle of Life” and “Hukunah Matatah”.

    Also, not much has changed with Eddie Murphy after this interview. With some exceptions, he still makes terrible films.

  • I think anyone can make a case on why they think The Lion King is overrated, but Gene’s case is just his pro Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast bias. That’s really all I got from his review of the film.

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