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Reviews of "Mansfield Park," "Toy Story 2," "The World is Not Enough," and "Dick."

Quick Flicks

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!B! "Mansfield Park"
!B! "Toy Story 2"
!B! "The World is Not Enough"
!B! Now on Video: "Dick"






"Mansfield Park" - Although Jane Austen purists will have a field day decrying many of director Patricia Rozema's changes — including incest and lesbianism — you have to cheer her attempts to change the heroine of "Mansfield Park," Fanny Price, into a woman more like her creator.

Those whose only brush with the feminist/romantic pen of Austen have been in the movies will find "Mansfield Park" to be much like the others: Woman who follows her heart instead of her family's or society's notion makes the better marriage, and lives relatively happily ever after with a man who appreciates her lively wit, her wicked tongue and her dead-on sense of being true to her self.

Unfortunately, only O'Connor gives a lively enough performance to keep this period romance interesting. She gets little help from the members of her so-called supporting cast. In fact, their acting talents and characterizations are woefully beneath those Austen-casts we've come to enjoy.



"Toy Story 2" - I can't say often enough how much I enjoyed this sequel. While the first was entertaining and charming, it felt decidedly like it had been written by a bunch of boys reminiscing about their favorite toys. This time out, there's plenty of "girl power." Not only is there Woody the Cowboy's (voiced again by Tom Hanks) tomboy-counterpart, Jesse (voiced by Joan Cusack), but even Mrs. Potato Head has a bigger part in the action. Oh, and I can't forget the gang of bikini-clad Barbies that Buzz (Tim Allen's voice) and the boy-toys encounter when they're off to save Woody from an unscrupulous toy collector.



"The World is Not Enough" - Guns, gadgets and girls, what more could a James Bond fan want? Considering this is the 19th movie in a series that has spanned 37 years, this tale of oil pipelines, evil nemeses with bullets in their brains and femme fatales suffering from acute Stockholm Syndrome is amazingly action-packed and satisfying.

Playing the master debonair spy for the third time, Pierce Brosnan finally fits the part. There are enough worldy lines around his eyes, and even he can't quite utter those dreadful double entendres in the dialogue without a twinge of self-consciousness. Nor can he quite swallow the idea that sexy Denise Richards — clad in form-fitting sleeveless T-shirt and short-shorts — is really a rocket scientist.

Add to that John Cleese as a "Q"-in waiting, Robert Carlyle as the villainous Reynard, and Sophie Marceau as a puzzling damsel-in-distress and "The World Is Not Enough" is more than enough for Bond fans.



"Dick"

When this tale of two '70s-era teens who accidentally oversee some shredding going on during a school field trip to the Nixon White House was first promoted, I admit to being underwhelmed. Talk about being pleasantly surprised!

Played strictly for yuks, this teasing bit of retro-satire begs the question: Who could have believed these jokers? Dan Hedaya is Tricky Dick, who comes up with the idea of hiring the two marginally bright high-schoolers as the official walkers for his famous dog, "Checkers."

David Foley is great as the scheming Haldeman and Kirsten Dunst and Michelle Williams are believable as the two girls who see more than they can comprehend. Or do they? What if the real Deep Throat were two high school girls in trouble?

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