August 22nd, 2011

Cinema Dave  Swashbuckling ournalist and

"Chasing Madoff" is too entertaining to be taken seriously

**Chasing Madoff** is an espionage documentary about the Gordon Gecko of our time, Bernie Madoff.

In recent decade of irrational exuberance, money managers missed the signs of approaching doom. Much like ignoring hurricane warnings, people like Harry Markopolos warned the watch dog organization of Wall Street, the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC). When Madoff’s financial abuse made front page news, the SEC lost credibility with independent investors. The sins of Bernie Madoff has affected the South Florida charitable fund raising on a local level.

Sometimes veering too much towards the dramatic comedy, Canadian director Jeff Prosserman’s superficial approach deflates Harry Markopolos’ emotional sacrifice. That said, **Chasing Madoff** simplifies Madoff and his Ponzi schemes, making a complicated financial con job approachable for the layman.
Cinema Dave  Swashbuckling ournalist and

Take a classic like "Don't Be Afraid of the Dark" and make it accesible to modern fears

For the last decade, Guillermo Del Toro has directed some of the most consistently interesting motion pictures; starting with **The Devil's Backbone,** both **Hellboy** movies and **Pan's Labyrinth.** He has also produced gothic thriller **The Orphanage** and this summer's best monster movie, **Don't Be Afraid of the Dark.**

Based on a 1973 teleplay staring Kim Darby and Jim Hutton, "Don't Be Afraid of the Dark" opens with a scary myth-making prologue, good old fashioned opening credits that foreshadows the plot structure and an entertaining balance between humor and scares.

Vulnerable from opening scene, Bailee Madison plays the disregarded daughter of Guy Pearce, a real estate speculator who is trying to sell the Blackwood Mansion. Dealing with dueling divorced parents is trauma enough, but little Bailee must contend with scurvy little demons under her bed at the Blackwood Mansion. Once awakened, these intelligent little devils need a human sacrifice to be placated.

The success of this motion picture weighs heavily on nine year old Bailee Madison, a Fort Lauderdale native. Along with the nifty special effects, Bailee Madison hold her own with veteran actors Katie Holmes and Guy Pearce. **Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark** is good popcorn eating Saturday Morning escapism.