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The Number 23 2007

Walter Sparrow becomes obsessed with a novel that he believes was written about him. As his obsession increases, more and more similarities seem to arise...

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Solar rating: 7.2


Imdb rating: 6.4

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Interesting enough to watch once, though it's not something I'll re-watch (unless I forget I watched it, which is entirely possible... it's just not all that memorable). I kept expecting Carrey to make faces and slapstick his way through the movie, but it never happened. Oh well.
once you learn to read sign, whether in the wild or on pavement, you find the kicker is discerning what is and ain't sign. virginia madsen is underrated. to see her play a steamy southern belle, watch her and don johnson in dennis hopper's THE HOT SPOT. her brother, michael, refuses to watch movies where she appears nude so he probably didn't catch this one.
Suzanne's Career -- 9

Ace in the Hole -- 7.5

My Night at Maud's -- 9.5

The Best Years of Our Lives -- 8

The Number 23 -- 3
"Sorry dude, we don't have that." So says the punk at the concession when I asked him if they had any breakfast cereal. My evening wasn't going well.

But I was pleasantly surprised that "The Number 23" was actually halfly good. I know what you're thinking, halfly isn't a word. Just wait. There it is. It's now a word. You're welcome.

So there's something called the 23 Enigma which refers to the idea that everything is related to the number 23: from Michael Jordan to the numerological weirdness of 9/11 (9+11+2+0+0+1=23) to the first and last sentence of this review. However, as the movie suggests, there isn't any meaning or purpose to this weird phenomenon.

At first, I thought the movie was gonna suck because of the director (destroyer of Tim Burton's Batman movies). And it seemed like a rehash of Secret Window, and I was like ‘dude, Jim, you're cool, but you're Depp'. But as it went on, I was like ‘oh wait, never mind'.

In "The Number 23", Walter (Jim Carrey) is a ho-hum family man and dog-catcher. He's bored with his job, staring into space, thinking about how cream-of-wheat might taste with carrots. But of course, something out of the ordinary happens. Walter comes across a mysterious book titled The Number 23. He notices the story resembles his own life, and down the rabbit hole we follow the poor fool as he becomes more relentless in his obsession with the number 23 all around him.

See what happens when you read? Walter spirals into paranoia and obsession after he begins reading a book. Moral: Books are evil.

The movie's only about an hour and a half, but it feels like for-eh-vurr. It drags 2/3 of the way in, so that led me to believe Steven Spielberg is the devil. His movies tend to drag right around the second act. There are normally three acts in a Hollywood movie. 2/3=23. And thusly, we can conclude that Spielberg is the devil. Or at least financing the movie somehow….but I digress.

I liked "The Number 23". It was interesting, weird, funny, with a few flaws. But hey, not every movie can be "The Little Mermaid", right? It's a huge dream, but it's mine.

The Number 23 (2007)

It was entertaining in a weird way but not quite as good as I expected. It was never slow but just didn't quite meet expectations.
RATING (0 to ****): **1/2

The trailer for Joel Schumacher's "The Number 23" is one ludicrous enough to induce laughter. If I was not among a polite art-house audience seeing "Babel" on opening night, I would have been able to do so. Needless to say, the audience I was with for the finished product was a lot different- rowdy teenagers who aren't too polite to laugh at a movie.

This is where the more successful laughs come in. Even the consistently funny Jim Carrey doesn't amuse us with the little humorous bits inserted into the script; you'll have a much better chance laughing at all the stupid loopholes used to lead everything to 23. Virginia Madsen's character is quick to point out that her husband is simply "searching", and that's what the script has her doing most of the time- pointing out holes in logic onscreen, as if that lets the self-proclaimed numerologist screenwriters off the hook.

(2/3 is NOT 0.666. It is 0.6666666666... (infinite sixes), but rounded to thousandths is 0.667. ...and I don't even need to explain the kind of loopholes used to lead 9-11-2001 to 23.)

...then something happens. "The Number 23" goes from laughably ludicrous and unsuspenseful, to something that's actually pretty twisty and fun. Joel Schumacher gives us segments illustrating the book-within-a-film that are always entertaining, but once the book ends, the main storyline kicks into gear... and the screenplay stops trying to prove points about numbers to the audience, instead concentrating on showing us this man going slowly insane.

Which is what we really paid to see.

The main movie aside, let's talk about marketing: while they did a good job releasing it on the 23rd, which so happened to fall on movie Friday (6-6-06 for "The Omen" wasn't so lucky), with the inevitable remake, maybe they'll go one step further and time it for 2-3-23. ...which so happens to be a Friday as well! Creepy...

MPAA: R (violence, disturbing images, sexuality and language)
Runtime: 1 hour, 39 minutes (93 minutes of "real movie")

Can I get a second opinion?

(*1/2) "The most ridiculous and implausible movie of the year (so far) not a descent into paranoia, it's a descent into bad film making." -Cory

(**) "...thrills and chills for the first two halves of the film with great visuals and solid and not so annoying performances from the cast, but also burns the whole experience with an ending that you'll curse till death." -Luis

(2/3) "A movie about a guy obsessed with the number 23 and anything that would add up to or could be made into the number 23, it deserves to be mocked, so I've given it just 2/3 of a star." -Steve Rhodes, Internet Reviews

Here are three reasons you should not see this movie:

1) It's not as good as it could be.
2) Joel Schumacher directed it.
3) It plays with your mind.

Unfortunetly this film could have been much better. The belief system for the #23 is not new and has been around for a while. Actually one of the main reasons Jim Carrey did this movie is because he subscribes to the 23 theory. The story was weak and when you get to the denoumont it takes a good 15 minutes to explain the clues that were never presented to the viewer. What did you expect this is your regular Joel Schumacher film. Frankly the only thing that seperated this Schumacher movie from others is that his teenaged male star, Logan Lerman did not have a scene with his shirt off. Maybe he finally heard about Roman Polanski.

If you do go see this film I'm warning you, you will become obsessed with the #23. You will look for it everywhere. It is advisable that you take a taxi home after watching this film as you will be easily distracted on the road trying to find the number. That's all I can really say about this movie, it just was not worth the money. I'm glad I get into movies for free.

Hmm. This movie was...ok? I guess?

While the concept is certainly intriguing, it doesn't make for much of a movie. There aren't any thrills until close to the end when there are a few creepy moments. However, the "resolution" seems to take like 8 years to complete, and it's a pretty overused ending at that. The best thing about it was some unexpectedly wonderful looking shots courtesy of Matthew Libatique (The Fountain).

Oh. I finally saw the trailer for Grindhouse (Planet Terror and Death Proof). The posters looked pretty sweet, but the These movies are going to be great, and I'm not even a Tarantino/Rodriguez fanboy. The girl with the leg/gun? Going. to. be. the. best. character. ever.
Not bad as Friday night entertainment, but nothing spectacular. It's so easy for your mind to see what it wants to see... my friend and I found 23 in plenty afterward. Am I going to kill someone now too?
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