Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Art Appreciation Daze
Angie Engles | Columbia, MD United States | 11/17/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"While it's easy for me to get caught up in Virginia Madsen's ability to lend her understated, sometimes breathtaking talents to even the most mediocre of roles (think HIGHLANDER 2), I still had trouble enjoying ARTWORKS. Though the cinematography is first-rate and the acting pretty decent among the cast, something falls short.
Maybe it's the rather blah writing or the lack of motivation and background on the characters of Bret Rogers and Cory Wells. It also could be the fact that all the chemistry in the world still doesn't really explain why Emma Becker and Bret fall in love (Do we really even care?)
The main reason I stuck with this "art heist movie trying to be an independent film" was because I could relate to the aching appreciation for art Virginia Madsen so eloquently conveys through her portrayal of Emma Becker. Her quiet suffering at the loss of her newborn baby can only be alleviated through painting and acquiring, unfortunately through illegal means, artwork that others take for granted.
"Artworks" might have worked better if the writers could have made us care more about the action scenes. ("Action" is probably too generous a word since each art theft seems to have been phoned in, rather than played with any enthusiasm that reflects the characters' passion for art.)
It's true I'm giving this movie three stars, but I would like to give the cat who appears during one particularly passionless scene five stars for providing one of "Artwork"'s few suspenseful moments:).
Not what it could have been
Glen Sooter | Washington, DC United States | 01/15/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I had "The Thomas Crowne Affair" in hand when I wondered if there might be a similar movie I hadn't yet seen. "Artworks" was an obvious choice.
It proved entertaining and interesting enough - particularly its premise. But the whole thing had a "made for TV" feel to it - the cinematography, script, and the acting (which may have just been a result of the writing - hard to tell).
I can only imagine how good this good-guy heist movie could have been had it had the cinematic mood and suspenseful style of "The Thomas Crowne Affair" or the chic style and crisp dialogue of "Ocean's 11"."
Sexy lady - high class ho - not much going on in the script
Drake-by-the-Lake | State of Euphoria | 07/02/2005
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Just a simple textbook crime spree by thrill-seeking, amateur kleptomaniacs. Which ends in the expected. Lackluster script that moves waaay too slowly; not many ideas. The lady's sexy, and for gay or female viewers, the men are not bad either, but otherwise? Teh!"
Eddie Mills Shines
Lee Armstrong | Winterville, NC United States | 01/09/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Jim Amatulli's first feature is "Artworks." Virginia Madsen plays artist Emma Becker whose marriage is breaking up after the loss of a baby. This film came a couple years before Madsen's breakthrough Oscar-nominated film in 2004, "Sideways." For that film, Madsen won Best Supporting Awards from the Broadcast Film Critics Association, Chicago, Toronto & Los Angeles Film Critics Associations and New York & San Francisco Film Circles. For "Artworks" she was not nominated. However, her performance is a good one, strong on the subtleties of a marriage breaking up and a woman who wants more from life. What did not play well for me is how the daughter of the police chief suddenly decides to break the law. It runs counter to the values we assume she has. She seemed to love her father; so she wasn't rebelling against him. This part of the film didn't work for me. Rick Rossovich plays the gallery owner Bret Rogers who falls for Emma. Rossovich appeared in classic films like "Roxanne," "Top Gun" and the Jane Fonda film "The Morning After." In "Artworks" he seems less like an experienced actor, anchored with dialogue that seems stiff and lacks believability. The muted excitement of the film comes in the love relationship. Eddie Mills who has appeared on numerous TV shows such as "Without a Trace," "House," Crossing Jordan" & "Touched by an Angel" plays Cory Wells who can forge paintings and works at the gallery. His supporting performance is the most effective in the film. The moral of the film appears to be that crime pays as long as you do a year in prison. If you did the year in prison, then you've paid for your crime and go ahead and enjoy the profits from the rest of your heists in some exotic locale. With major plot and character flaws, "Artworks" is interesting enough for an evening when you don't have anything better to do. Enjoy!"