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Overall Rating

Awesome: 19.5%
Worth A Look24%
Average: 14%
Pretty Bad: 18.5%
Total Crap24%

12 reviews, 128 user ratings

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Cell, The
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by Thom

"Stylistically, a Nine Inch Nails and a Marilyn Manson Video. Plot? no."
3 stars

I only went to see [b]The Cell[/b] because my friend Klaus who works for some post-prod company in Toronto, got a credit as "System Administrator". I figured it would suck just because it had Jennifer Lopez in it. she's so frat bait. But then again, she is surviving in Hollywood. Ass and All.

I have got to hand it to Jennifer Lopez. She knows how to choose a role. Selena? and she is rumored to be playing Frida Kahlo (bi-sexual wife of artist, Diego Rivera) in an upcoming film. She is true to her roots. Gone are the days when Hollywood would take someone like Rita Hayworth, use electrolysis to move her hairline up, and bleach her skin and turn her into a white girl. Oh no. This is the era of Ricky Martin. Nortenos and Taquerias are passe. The new hispanic/american culture is emerging and taking its place on the "BIG SCREEN" as something other than slow witted tequila sotted napping sombrereros or frilly dress wearing tortilla makers. No way. Now hispanics are psychic. Or not psychic exactly, but I don't know what else you call going into someone elses head, with a machine or not. Even Dr.Xavier used a machine to locate mutants and he was psychic. Extra Psychic. Dr.Extra Psychic and Jennifer Lopez, glorifying important women in the hispanic culture.

fun fact. there is a traditional healer in Mexico called a curandero that figures that what's plagueing you may have roots in your mind so not only do they give you some herbs, but they make you do seemingly non-sensical things to root the sickness, bad luck, depression, out of your head.

So I imagine many Hispanic Americans watching this film may have identified Catherine Deane, the character she plays, with this traditional healer.

The visuals were STUNNING. do you hear me... STUNNING.

it was ..
like a NIN and Marilyn Manson video, with some Pierre et Gilles style thrown in. and thats all it was.

it was dreamy, and lush. normally, dreams aren't so sharp in their details but using so much ornamentation to represent the symbolic in the unconscious was effective and always carries well into theatre which is largely symbolic and ritualistic anyway. The Adventures of Baron Von Munchausen comes to mind as a film that used ornamentation to represent the literalness of symbolic aspects of a character or a scene. The ideal made real, ideal being the most perfected form of even the dark and dangerous. IE. Hell as being the ideal place of torment. Hell in your own mind. Such as the mind Catherine Deane had to explore to find the location of the missing victim of serial killer, Carl Stargher (Vincent D'Onofrio).

Exaggeration is always fascinating. Clowns and Carnivals and Funhouses. Jan Svankmeijer used stop motion and puppetry to achieve this same kind of effect with the grotesque, as did the Brothers Quay, for whom Svankmeijer was an inspiration.

It pissed me off that the character Vince Vaughn played had to be so lame inside the dream machine that enabled Catherine to enter the minds of her clients. He followed her in because some stuff happened and he had to go in. So he's wandering around inside the virtual space created by Carls mind and looking for Catherine. He
was like a person who didn't get poetry or what aesthetics are all about or who are totally
disconnected from their own psyche. I mean, when you are in someones head, you don't just poke at things willy-nilly.
You would think he would have deferred to her expertise because he is a professional and understands the value of
consulting with experts and being consulted with, instead he being a typical man, "Well I'm male, so I must be in charge
here", just started barking out orders and fucking things up. This was wildly incongruous with what I would expect from
a forensic detective who specialized in pathology.

fucking DUH!

god, do they think everyone in the world is some brain dead, tv fed, survivor watching fucking idiot who thinks USA
today is a NEWS paper?

and people wonder why I don't have a television, only go to see "art" films or "independant" films and rant about the

movies with this theme
Dark City
The Truman Show
Network (god, how did this movie ever get made by hollywood? I guess they pulled a 1984 ... you can tell them the
truth, all of it, and nobody, NOBODY will believe you, so you can spend the rest of your life, in a bar, drinking oily
gin, waiting for the bullet)

my favorite part of the film... when the three mothers in the plowed field do that little "my son is the devil" thing ... and
some guy in the audience said, "What the hell?"

I said, this whole non-linear psyche thing affected him. It was like a baby who takes his first breath, a mind that takes its first breath of the surreal. A scary dream that doesn't seem to be connected to anything. It was like he, for the first time, was confronted with something that just wasn't supposed to fit into a framework, or a concept, it just is, like art sometimes
just IS.

like life sometimes just IS.

Will feminists think this movie is
misogynist? maybe... but that scene of "women as dolls" says so much about attitudes towards women. Especially among the guys at the
theatre I saw it at. in a theatre that was inhabited mostly by young people who turn everything
into a fight and you are one side or the other. you know, gang mentality. war mentality.
Sadly, the ruling consciousness of the planet. Insecure machismo. pathologically emotionally immature. too few scripts
with which to rule their narrowband lives. aka, the people who make their own world difficult by being difficult in the
world yet, do not posess the self-awareness or ever come against anything that challenges their perspective (and if it
does, most likely, its just waved off as being "wack" or "lame" or "against the bible" or some other intellectually
astonishing argument that brings the most crackling wit to their knees in a cripplying labyrinth of logic) that jars their normal
experience to snap them out of the hypnosis of their life and see that they are not simply clones of one another acting
out the same exact plot. the same exact plot. clones. exact. the same. clones. plot.

I must say though, that I am not contemptuous. I am ... sympathetic and wish only to be there for the ones who seek a
cure for the social diseases like war, intolerance, hatred, conformity, oppression, thoughtlessness, apathy, anaesthesia.

the loud majority.

Am I an asshole, sarcastic, or being ironic for saying that?

too sarcastic. if you don't start with sarcasm, how ever will you graduate to irony, the most subtle form of sarcasm
there is?

I think The Cell was way too high concept for someone who showed up to see Ms. Lopezes ass, which they only used
gratuitously, twice, I think.

It was nice to see CCH Pounder (Bagdad Cafe) in another film. Even if her role was just hacked together as a very flimsy plot device
that she did the best she could with. I cringe to think of the use of the "real world" scenes to bridge the "mind"

The film fell apart when it tried to have a plot. It was fine as a concept film, even kind of arty and intriguing. But plot? no.

link directly to this review at
originally posted: 08/27/00 08:01:27
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User Comments

12/29/17 morris campbell visionary serial killer movie 4 stars
9/25/17 PennyNotSoWise Lopez' butt is the true star 4 stars
6/03/11 Bronson Mejia I tried to like this movie and wonder what Ebert saw that I didn't! 1 stars
8/30/10 KingNeutron Unique movie - worth watching for the effects and the dream sequences 4 stars
12/20/09 FrankNFurter Overly-bashed film with high creepiness/suspence and unique visuals. Worth watching! 4 stars
8/30/09 CTT Incredible stuff, very underappreciated 5 stars
1/22/09 Psychotic angel Looks good, but story is horrible. And why all you sane people have filth or gore fetish? 3 stars
9/15/08 Panda Monium Amazing imagery makes up for plot holes, very creepy 4 stars
8/27/08 Shaun Wallner This is the kind of movie you fall asleep too. 1 stars
6/28/07 gr117 Crapola 1 stars
1/19/07 Marjorie This film was a journey through the mind of a killer who lives in a psychological hell 4 stars
1/16/07 David Pollastrini saw it but have no memory so it must have sucked 2 stars
10/15/06 Adrian Thoroughly enjoyable. Visionary, but the story and characters needed work. Too short as wel 4 stars
6/18/06 chienne Strange, creepy, weird & total frog shit. What was the horse thing about? 2 stars
10/11/05 Carolyn Rathburn This film left me feeling strange, a little like I needed a place to hide. 4 stars
8/07/05 Charlene Javier Severely underrated. 4 stars
8/04/05 Carolyn Rathburn Left me feeling strange, plays on the emotions 4 stars
8/03/05 Eric Rollins Fascinating on many levels. Best visual effect is making J-Los butt look good. 4 stars
6/09/05 C. Butterill Would like to find a review that analyzes the strong imagery references to Mary, the Christ 4 stars
4/24/05 Vince Pretty cool flick. Don't listen to dorky total crappers, watch it! 4 stars
4/13/05 Indrid Cold Ultimately pretty shallow, but worth seeing for the stunning imagery. 4 stars
1/11/05 Archanist_101 It would've been better as an Anime & if it was directed by Clive Barker!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 4 stars
12/12/04 Admiral Piett Fuck J-Lo 1 stars
9/26/04 teri hill awsome movie 5 stars
9/22/04 R.W. Welch Pic is overwhelmed by mostly meaningless dreamscapes. Some interesting images. 2 stars
5/20/04 Proteus The setdesigner is the only one who put this on his resume. Shoulda hired Kaufman to script 1 stars
3/04/04 Vince A creepy serial killer movie with a twist.... I liked it 4 stars
2/25/04 john wants to be clever but ends up overindulgent and obvious - rather pointless film 1 stars
2/23/04 Naturezrevenge Visually stunning, as disturbing as I want, beautiful, and subliminal. Good meat flavour. 5 stars
7/08/03 nr great 5 stars
5/25/03 John40 underrated sci-fi flick with great visuals 4 stars
5/17/03 Jack Sommersby Style over substance. Repugnant, boring, and forgettable. 1 stars
4/22/03 mr. Pink Boring crap 1 stars
4/19/03 Ubu the Ripper Not even worth the effort to type a comment. 1 stars
3/01/03 Monique worst i've ever seen, threw popcorn at the screen in anger. j-lo gotta go! 1 stars
2/26/03 scott A GOOD FILM 5 stars
2/01/03 Goofy Maxwell Coulda been a wicked comic book on film - comix needn't make sense, but thrillers... 2 stars
11/18/02 Paul The good thing id Lopez barley talks..sits around looking scared 2 stars
11/14/02 Paul The good thing id Lopez barley talks..sits around looking scared 2 stars
11/08/02 solamia i loved it 5 stars
8/14/02 Bryan Brooks It's so bad, I'm suprised Jake Lloyd wasn't in it. J-Lo=no-acto. 2 stars
7/15/02 ! pure bullshit 1 stars
5/15/02 hooman farmer 1 stars
3/05/02 Alan Smithee Other than Ms. Lopez's ass, this movie is just a boring turd. 1 stars
1/21/02 Spencer Lent This was more whacked up than Pi. Weird weird weird. 3 stars
1/15/02 Bojo I'm really surprised that so many of you hate this movie. You all suck. Visuals were amazin 5 stars
1/15/02 Andrew Carden MST2K Should Take This One Into Their Grasp. 2 stars
10/31/01 I love movies Roger Ebert opinions are dinosaur crap. He also liked nutty professor 2 1 stars
9/23/01 Jim Cranky Critic sez: "Disembowelment: The Music Video" That's about right. 3 stars
9/09/01 Butterbean Not as bad as everyone says. D'Onofio was great in it and there was a nice story. 3 stars
6/27/01 This movie sucks don't waste your money The "Hooked on phonics" version of the Matrix with no big words 1 stars
6/02/01 Thrillhouse boring, tasteless, stupid, and illogical 1 stars
5/28/01 I love movies Roger Ebert i hate you you used to be reliable, now you give this fucking movie four stars. 1 stars
5/24/01 Rampage UN-FREAKING-BELIEVABLE...don't waste your money on a crappy movie like this one 1 stars
5/06/01 Roy Smith Very pretty and incredibly stupid , screams for MST3K treatment.. 1 stars
4/19/01 Tam Thriller eh? This didnt thrill me at all. Took far too long. 2 stars
4/14/01 suraj kumar singha fuck 5 stars
4/12/01 Jesse L Besides the ludicrous plot, Jennifer should have been topless 2 stars
4/08/01 Steve All visual, no substance. JLo actress??? 2 stars
3/19/01 Elendil ...and the concept had such potential...BTW, the effects aren't *that* great. 1 stars
2/11/01 KyLe*BrOfLoVsKi A hybrid of Smashing Pumpkins/Marylin Manson videos, with J Lo as the obligatory hot babe. 4 stars
2/01/01 Dan Waldman Plot died from exhaustion & took visuals with it 1 stars
1/18/01 Derrick G. Jackson One of the worst movies I've ever seen. Garbage! 1 stars
1/16/01 Nut Total suck. Lopez as a brilliant scientist--yeah right! 1 stars
1/06/01 Emily i thought this movie was superb. and i'll say it again. superb. 5 stars
12/23/00 Bev Clark Visually striking but fucking awful narrative 3 stars
12/23/00 mahone Glossed up B crap. 2 stars
12/10/00 BrittenysPears Lopez needs to stick to "singing" this is the definition of sucks all ass 1 stars
12/03/00 scott wahls the matrix meets seven, if there is no sequel my life will be empty 5 stars
11/25/00 The Evil Penguin Corny dialogue, but the imagination is stun you. 3 stars
11/21/00 The Bill Head This was an okay movie. It had some moments...that's about it. 3 stars
11/20/00 Fat bastard You don't need a plot, you have Jennifer Lopez and some cool visual fx 3 stars
11/17/00 Caz:) Deliciously weird! An eye opener! Fantastic visuals and solid script. 5 stars
11/05/00 Jon I think people say they like Lopez to hide their homosexuality 1 stars
10/01/00 Ivan Truly marvelous suspense thriller! Silence of the Lambs doesn't even come close!! 5 stars
9/18/00 Gluke what a fucking trip!!! 5 stars
9/17/00 Boy In The Designer Bubble Hey Everybody! Let's find cruel and sadistic ways to torture women! Hooray For Hollwyood!!! 1 stars
9/15/00 bartv A few stri$8.50 to see Jennifer as a great model but terrible actress with absurd dialogue. 2 stars
9/14/00 Ground Zero Two words: bad movie 2 stars
9/13/00 PJ eye candy, plotholes, bad acting, over direction, pretensious, style over substance, sucks! 2 stars
9/10/00 The Bomb 69 visual masterpiece, story held up as well 4 stars
9/08/00 Tdis72 A sucking movie for all the hype about this and I won't see anymore Jennifer Lopez movies 1 stars
9/07/00 Basil Worth a look just for the special effects. 3 stars
9/06/00 Mike This could have been very good, but the plot crapped at the end. 3 stars
9/04/00 Zeitgeist'd think they'd drug test someone whose job is to enter people's minds 3 stars
9/03/00 M-Cat of the Feline Posse don't believe the reviews, just watch the movie 5 stars
9/02/00 ALIaS Incredible Visuals! The story however fell so short of its potential 4 stars
9/01/00 Diehard Actually, I found the plot to be quite involving. It was actually original and well-played 4 stars
8/31/00 KyLe*BrOfLoVsKi Looked like a lot of my dreams...does this mean I'm schizo??? 4 stars
8/28/00 Girl 9 weak plot and BAD acting by Lopez, but still strangely interesting... 4 stars
8/27/00 Kriperace S.S.D.D 2 stars
8/27/00 All o dat Jennifers ass and a surgicly sliced horse. 5 stars
8/27/00 Chuck The separated-hore thing was pretty cool... 1 stars
8/26/00 NICK i only saw it to see jenny lopezs PHAT ASS 1 stars
8/26/00 PhilmPhreak Very pretty visuals, very dumb story 3 stars
8/25/00 Maclay01 Should have been condensed into a ten-minute video - the story was insulting 2 stars
8/24/00 Movieman Bizarre, but original 4 stars
8/24/00 amy dawson this movie kicked ass 5 stars
8/24/00 Politicsman SOTL meets Matrix meets Dark City meets Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here 3 stars
8/23/00 BRINGER OF BAD SMELLS I didn't know that they stacked shit that high. 1 stars
8/23/00 Ramen Noodles all that bullcrap to solve what normal policework could have figured out 1 stars
8/23/00 **~**Persnickety**~** damn, this movie left me speechless,,incredible 5 stars
8/23/00 kim boyd beautiful but u don't get 2 know the characters well enuff 2 care n wht hppnd 2 the 1st boy 2 stars
8/23/00 forger This stank to high heaven, watch the trailer & save your $$ 1 stars
8/22/00 elfpunkt don't go to see this while frying.... 5 stars
8/22/00 Captain Highcrime A contemporary/modern art gallery come to life. 5 stars
8/22/00 Jubilee Guy Visually stunning, decent story (with some holes). 4 stars
8/22/00 malcolm "Silence of the Lambs" on acid -- side shot of Lopez's ass doesn't hurt either 3 stars
8/21/00 doompoon really makes you cherish the moment. Visuals so out of this world that they suspend you 5 stars
8/21/00 Roman Pretty damn cool 5 stars
8/21/00 PJ Some of the visuals were amazing, but I was a little dissapointed 3 stars
8/21/00 ItHasVinceVaughnInIt Visually amazing, amazing script, amazing of the summer 5 stars
8/21/00 KoHawk This movie was extremely innovative and, well, awesome.My dimwitted counterparts wont agree 5 stars
8/20/00 Doctor Collosus Visionary! Horrifying and Beautiful. Not for the weak-minded 5 stars
8/20/00 JonnyA Worth seeing, great visuals esp. a shot of Lopez in her undies...ghetto booty whut! whut! 4 stars
8/20/00 Stargher What's with all these grainy-looking movies recently? This one's the best. Stunning, truly 5 stars
8/20/00 LoudChris IT was like riding an awsome, short roller coster with a long line 3 times. 4 stars
8/20/00 Thor A beautifully designed and gorgeously photographed intensely bad movie. 1 stars
8/20/00 Merripen Some of the most beautiful visuals I have ever seen. Excellent. 5 stars
8/20/00 Rue the Whirl Visually average, story sucking, overall a disappointment 2 stars
8/19/00 Kip Visualy wonderful, story a little lacking, but over all good. 4 stars
8/19/00 Linda Phillips weak on acting and dialogue; strong on effects 3 stars
8/19/00 frank visual masterpiece. good script. lots of disturbing bits. 4 stars
8/18/00 hamlet3k Surreal visuals and disturbing imagery make for creepy good time. 4 stars
8/18/00 Jokko fucking LAME. shitty performances, massive directoral masturbation, utterly awful script. 1 stars
8/13/00 Justin Brilliant , loaded with incredible effects, and genius ideas, Lopez's ass deserves an OSCAR 5 stars
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  16-Nov-2000 (M)

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