Cheer Up Charlies
"...Starring: Jessica Alba, Jeremy Piven, Joel McHale, Rowan Blanchard, Mason Cook, Alexa Vega, Daryl Sabara and Belle Solorzano. Robert Rodriguez's family-friendly tweener spy franchise continues ever onward, even as original spy kids Carmen and Juni Cortez (Vega, Sabara) have grown up and diversified since 2003's Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over..."
"...Starring: Antonio Banderas, Carla Gugino, Alexa Vega, Daryl Sabara, Alan Cumming, Teri Hatcher, Cheech Marin, Danny Trejo, Robert Patrick and Tony Shalhoub. It's going to come as a surprise to many people that Robert Rodriguez -- the filmmaker they associate with blazing action show-stoppers like El Mariachi, Desperado, From Dusk Till Dawn, and The Faculty -- has not only gone out and made a PG-rated kids movie but in the process has also raised the bar for what's cool and acceptable in the all-too-placid world of the kids film market..."
"...Starring: Daryl Sabara, Alexa Vega, Ricardo Montalban, Sylvester Stallone, Mike Judge, Salma Hayek, Robert Vito, Ryan Pinkston, Bobby Edner, Courtney Jines, Antonio Banderas and Carla Gugino. If imagination could be harnessed as an energy source, I suspect local filmmaker Robert Rodriguez could power a small nation all on his own, but after 90 minutes immersed in the video-game world of Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over, one wishes he had diversified that imagination some..."
"...Starring: Antonio Banderas, Carla Gugino, Alexa Vega, Daryl Sabara, Emily Osment, Matt O'Leary, Holland Taylor, Ricardo Montalban, Mike Judge and Steve Buscemi. Preteen superspies Carmen (Vega) and Juni Cortez (Sabara) return for more family-friendly hijinks in this locally filmed follow-up to last year's boffo Spy Kids..."
"...Starring: Daryl Sabara, Alexa Vega, Antonio Banderas, Carla Gugino, Alan Cumming, Teri Hatcher, Cheech Marin, Robert Patrick, Danny Trejo and Tony Shalhoub. Anyone who's seen "Bedhead" or any of Robert Rodriguez's other early short films made in San Antonio with the acting help of his large squadron of brothers and sisters knows that this director who established his reputation with blazing action show-stoppers is soft touch when it comes to directing kids..."
"...Robert Rodriguez’s second installment in the Spy Kids series is for kids, about kids, and made by kids (okay, adult-sized kids), and Sunday’s premiere of Spy Kids 2: The Island of Lost Dreams fed on that same sensibility. The packed house was teeming with kiddies (and parents, looking just as giddy)..."
"...Robert Rodriguez has always been a man of many hats -- writer/director/editor/artist -- and one who takes pains to draw as much of his filmmaking infrastructure from Austin and surrounding areas as possible. In addition to bringing together local actors, production designers, effects technicians, and crew members of all stripes on Spy Kids 2: The Island of Lost Dreams, Rodriguez also decided that the film's orchestral score be recorded here as well, something so unusual that Miramax requested an early April run-through -- three whole months before the real deal -- to determine if the idea was even feasible...."
"...The July 25 wide release of the third (and, presumably, final) installment in the hugely popular Spy Kids franchise is fast upon us -- and even faster for Austinites with deep, deep pockets. Austin and the Paramount Theatre will play host to the world premiere of Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over -- that's right, kids, the world premiere -- on Sunday, July 13..."
"...While the state later abandoned the plans for its grand complex, the Pooling Board retained ownership of its 22 Mueller acres; once Mueller really and finally did close (1999), the board leased out this now-surplus property in an attempt (common among state agencies in this situation) to head off pressures to unload it entirely. Enter Robert Rodriguez, at the time only a moderately famous young filmmaker, who turned the Pooling Board's hangars into the studio space that's now home to the mushrooming Spy Kids franchise..."
"...Starring: Danny Trejo, Antonio Banderas, Carla Gugino, Daryl Sabara and Alexa Vega. The Austin premiere of Robert Rodriguez's followup to last summer's hugely successful Spy Kids will be presented the weekend before its national release and will be shown via digital projection..."
"...Starring: Alexa Vega, Carla Gugino, Antonio Banderas, Daryl Sabara, Alan Cumming, Teri Hatcher, Cheech Marin, Danny Trejo, Robert Patrick and Tony Shalhoub. Robert Rodriguez has raised the bar for what's cool and acceptable in the all-too-placid world of the kids film market..."
"...The talented and energetic folks from Creative Action (formerly Theater Action Project) certainly know how to throw a good party! The I Spy Pie event last weekend on the deck outside Central Market attracted families with kids of all ages and everyone had a great time...."
"...AC: Working with kids is one of the hardest things a filmmaker can undertake, and with Redboy you have a 12-year-old lead actor throughout the entire picture. Devon Roy-Brown is terrific, though..."
"...At approximately the same time on the other side of town, Lyman Hardy was experiencing a similar pull toward Kids in Satan's Service. "I was in sixth grade, and I was either gonna join band or choir so I could be in a rock band like KISS," says Hardy..."
"...It's Saturday night, and the sidewalk outside the Paramount Theater is a mob scene. Actually, the whole of Congress Avenue between Sixth and Seventh streets is a mob scene, having been turned into a makeshift carnival for the premiere of Austin filmmaker Robert Rodriguez's newest movie Spy Kids..."
"...And far more than in Rodriguez's previous films, the Spy Kids series -- launched with 2000's Spy Kids and followed this week by Spy Kids 2: The Island of Lost Dreams -- relies on both digital and non-digital artists working in sync with the director to create the most fully realized world of gadgetry since Sean Connery first bumped into Q and company way back in Dr. No..."
"...Everything about Agent Cody Banks 2 reeks of hurry up and make this movie before its kid star Frankie Muniz loses his pubescent looks (it’s already borderline). This kiddie spy franchise has nothing on Robert Rodriguez’s Spy Kids troika: Where the Spy Kids movies are playful and clever, Cody Banks 2 is merely creepy and predictable..."
"...Starring: Alexa Vega, Mika Boorem, Scout Taylor-Compton, Sam Huntington, Jane Lynch and Jeff Garlin. It’s the last day of junior high for Julie (Spy Kids’ Alexa Vega), and she and her best gal pals are celebrating with a sleepover..."
"...But on this May afternoon, he is appearing at Travis High School not as Danny Trejo the actor, but as Danny Trejo the reformed criminal -- husband, father of three, drug and alcohol intervention counselor to many, and youth outreach advisor of East Los Angeles' program for young fathers. While in Austin shooting director Robert Rodriguez's new caper Spy Kids (see "Shoot for the Stars," p.62) Trejo has volunteered (yes, volunteered!) his time off to speak to a group of some 50 students at the Eastside high school -- many of whom he recognizes as carbon copies of his former self -- all in an effort to address issues of drug abuse, education, and crime..."
"...Presto chango: Zorro’s secret identity is revealed, and it ain’t Douglas Fairbanks. (Note: This can also be performed with chilled maraschino cherries and Guy Williams, but the results are far less zesty.) What started out as a promising return to form for that mythic Mexican buckler of swash has, in a single sequel, devolved into The Mummy Returns-lite, or, if you prefer, Spy Kids 2: Island of Lost Box Office..."