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10 Sure Signs a Movie Character is Doomed: And Other Surprising Movie Lists Paperback – 1 Aug 2003

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First Sentence
if you're young and beautiful and in great shape-like Denise Richards in Wild Things or Phoebe Cates when she stepped out or the pool in Fast Times at Ridgemont High or Penelope Cruz in just about every film she's done to date-there's no big risk in doing a nude scene. Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 17 reviews
19 of 24 people found the following review helpful
Trivial Fun 16 Feb 2003
By J. J. Kwashnak - Published on
Format: Paperback
Not intended as a scholarly or unbiased book, this collection of movie lists range from the hilariously perceptive - "13 great perks of being a movie character" to the wholly opinionated - "The 40 worst movies I've ever seen." The title caught my eye and the humorous writing kept me reading. Some of the lists are, well just lists like "Sequels that have equaled or bettered the original." No explanation or justification - just a list. And some of the lists are just self indulgent - "Attack of the quote whores" which collects those random fluff love quotes that we see in advertisement and puts them on a couple of pages for no good reason at all. Still, Roeper has taken some of that love of movies that propelled him to where he is by showing "5 Reasons George Baily Isn't Such a Wonderful Guy in It's a Wonderful Life," and the mentioned below "7 movies in which Ben Affleck cries like a big fat baby." If you are looking for serious cinematic writing, go look for Pauline Kael. Otherwise this is a great little commute, waste time or bathroom book. I only wish Roeper had put in a table of contents so I could easily find the gems again when I look for them instead of flipping through the book. Just silly. Enjoy!
13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Next time, write a real book! 5 July 2003
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book is more like a slightly extended magazine article. In fact, I've read articles in "Movieline" that were longer, and more informative.
About one quarter of the book includes material that is well thought-out and entertainingly written. The rest is stuff that Roeper must have dictated into his voice recorder while doing other tasks.

Roeper is clever and well-informed, but this book couldn't have taken more than two weeks to write. If you're looking for a truly quick read, this is the book for you. Just don't pay full price!
I'm sure Roeper is capable of writing a good book, even a book of lists that has a little more "meat." But Roeper, and the publisher, shouldn't try to pass this off as more than a brochure.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
worth a look, but not essential 2 July 2004
By David Group - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book's lists run the gamut from the commendable ("Ten movies that didn't make the AFI list but should have") to the throwaway (pick the half-dozen lists of your choice). In between, there are lists of his personal opinions, at least some of which are bound to provoke strong reactions (good and bad) in die-hard film buffs. There are also several lists of movie cliches that could have been lifted right out of Ebert's LITTLE MOVIE GLOSSARY. Some fall in the "Eh" category (movies starring cast members of "Seinfeld" and "Friends") and some that are LOL funny (Red carpet flubs by Joan Rivers). The book is padded out in the extreme, and fleshing it out here and there would have helped-- a lot (his list of in-jokes briefly discusses only 13 films, and his "10 movie character imitations that men can't resist doing" misses things like Pacino in SCARFACE ("Say hello to my li'l frien'")). A mixed bag, but there are worse ways of killing an hour or so.
PS: The back cover states that this book is the result of his years of watching thousands of films, yet in his SOURCES, he states that he consulted dozens of movie websites and hundreds of newspaper and magazine articles. Hmmmmm . . .
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Fun stuff for film fanatics 6 Mar 2006
By J. Brantley - Published on
Format: Paperback
Know any film buffs? Chances are you do. It seems like they like to see movies just because they are movies. They are apt to be reminded of this scene or that line from some film most folks remember vaguely. They like to draw connections between seemingly unrelated movies, and they have a strong sense of the "man behind the curtain" of moviedom: the clichés, the stolen plotlines, the mistakes, and so on.

Richard Roeper knows this audience well. 10 Sure Signs is a quite unique film buff's document. It manages to be a both a book that will please film nerds, but also one that will not alienate less devoted movie fans. This is no dry tome filled with pages of figures, dates, and unadorned quotes. It is as much a book of humor as a study of film.

However, one should note that, since it is a book of lists, the readability is a little low. It is the sort of book that works well in small doses-great dipping into periodically, but not for that long evening at home. It may also become dated fairly quickly, as new films arise that belong on the list-but part of the reader's fun may be in thinking of those new films.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
very funny 6 Jun 2004
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
Given that this is a "list" book and there is very little discussion of WHY these movies were selected, I can't rate it higher. There is, as some reviewers pointed out, some obvious ratings here, but there's also some original stuff. I particularly enjoyed "Movies in Which Ben Affleck Cries Like a Big Fat Baby," the Joan Rivers' Oscar bloopers, 10 Highly Stupid Habits of Movie People," and Pop Songs on Permanent Rotation - I'd always wondered how many movies had used "Respect" or "All Star."
And his list of the worst movies ever was spot on - given that he limited it to 40.
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