Archive for the ‘Movie Reviews’ Category

Movie Review- Olympus Has Fallen

Monday, March 18th, 2013

Olympus Has Fallen is so terrible I don’t even know where to begin. I suppose I’ll start with the title. Making a sequel to Air Force One is problematic for the obvious reason- If you call it Air Force One II, people might read it as Air Force 12. Of course, if you call it Olympus Has Fallen, then people won’t even know its a sequel to Air Force One. That predicament alone is good enough reason not to make the movie, but it only gets worse from there. I’m not usually one to say something is in poor taster, but I definitely think there is something wrong with putting Harrison Ford in black face and making him up to look like Morgan Freeman. Unless, wait…is this supposed to be a sequel to Deep Impact? OK, that makes more sense, and it explains some of the other parts of the plot that I didn’t get.

The movie starts out with an asteroid crashing in to the White House and taking Morgan Freeman hostage. As you might guess, this asteroid is the great-grandson of the asteroid Morgan Freeman blew up in Deep Impact. After that, the movie pretty much follows the plot of  Die Hard III: Die Hard With A Vengeance, with the Jeremy Irons part being played by Ashley Judd in an asteroid costume, Gerard Butler in the Bruce Willis role and Aaron Eckhart as the Samuel L. Jackson character. I have no problem spoiling this movie for you, but unfortunately, I’m too lazy to tell you more of the story or how it ends. Lets just say President Morgan Freeman and the asteroid talk out their differences and become friends just before the asteroids’ henchmen show up to finish the job by blowing up the earth. The movie is totally boring.

Movie Review; G.I. Joe: Retaliation

Friday, March 8th, 2013

I wish this was a review about a movie I made up, but unfortunately G.I.Joe: Retaliation actually exists. True story: a couple of years ago, I was contracted by Hasbro through Kaiju Big Battel to act in a demo film by one of the G.I. Joe toy developers. Apparently, he wanted his latest action figure to appear in the sequel, and that’s how I learned there would be a follow-up to the horrible G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra. I doubt that the designer’s toy ever saw the light of day, and I hope nobody but his immediate boss saw the silly movie we made. Luckily I was wearing a ski mask the whole time, so nobody will recognize me if it ever shows up on Youtube. There are some “fat kid with a light sabre” moments in there that aren’t quite absurd enough to be entertaining. Luckily, it was an easy shoot, I got a free lunch, and was eventually paid $200 for my efforts. I’m quite sure The Rock, Bruce Willis, Channing Tatum and the rest of the cast of Retaliation were paid a lot more than that, which is why they should all be more embarrassed of their movie than I am of the work I did at Hasbro.

I’ll be honest, I have to give props to the writers of Retaliation for their unconventional plot. The film begins with the immediate slaughter of all the annoying Joes from the first movie. After 5 minutes of screen time, we’re only left with Roadblock (The Rock), Snake Eyes (Ray Parker Jr.), and Jinx (attractive, but not famous half-Asian girl). However, just when you are glad to see no more Wayans Brothers, something preposterous happens. The director decides that, after the success of Magic Mike, Channing Tatum is too popular to kill off. The movie is then sent back into production for another 10 months, and the entire story is re-written. The most notable change is that Duke’s uniform is now nothing more than a camouflage speedo. Where does Channing keep is sidearms and ammo? That is a question this film never answers, although you can probably figure it out if you saw Magic Mike. Anyway, after NOT dying, the crew eventually meets up with Bruce Willis and they all “retaliate” against the evil forces of Cobra. There is another pretty good fight between Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow, and Jinx does some things that are somewhat sexy and cool.  The Rock says some witty one-liners, but a major disappointment is that he does NOT rhyme his dialogue. Anyone hoping to cling to just a tiny bit of nostalgia about the 80’s G.I.Joe cartoon should stay at home and not waste money on this. Overall the movie is as you’d expect: totally awful. A few good jokes by a washed-up wrestler, and some karate chops by the guy who wrote the Ghostbusters theme song is not enough to make up for all the other shit that happens.

One regret I have is that after my Hasbro stint, I could have warned you all that G.I. Joe: Retaliation was coming. I’m not sure why I didn’t. Maybe I was in in denial, or maybe I just hoped the producers would come to their senses and it would get shit-canned. Really, it’s all YOUR fault. If you guys hadn’t all shown up in droves to see Magic Mike, maybe this movie would have suffered the pre-death it deserved.

Movie Review- The Last Exorcism Part III

Thursday, February 28th, 2013

The Last Exorcism Part II opens in theaters this week, but who gives a shit. Today, I’m reviewing Part III, which may or may not currently be in the planning stage, or production, or post production, or about to be green-lit by some fatso producer trying to escape the porn industry. I guess I’m just mad that someone would think B Horror shlock is somehow better than porn. Anyway, on to the movie. What we all learned yesterday in the news is that Pope Benedict resigned his post so he could star in this movie. Bad career move, I say. Popes get way more hot chicks than B Movie actors, just ask Bruce Campbell. He barely ever scored when he was doing Evil Dead, but when he became Pope, his life turned around. He now doesn’t have to waste time doing crappy movies, which is why I think it is so weird that Benedict is shelling out over $1,000 to get a face lift to look like Bruce Campbell. I guess he figures it may improve his English-speaking ability and make him a better actor. It will not. Obviously.

The Plot of The Last Exorcism Part III is what you’d expect. A really flexible teenage girl, who is always doing back bends and moving in a jerky manner, is thought to be possessed by the devil. Naturally, a priest is called upon to put a stop to her awkward gymnastics. Benedict throws some holy water, her face gets scalded, then he realizes that they gave him the wrong stuff at the drug store. It was actually sulfuric acid, not holy water. An easy mistake to make, but this priest was already on thin ice for some pee-pee touching he did back in his younger days. He couldn’t risk another scandal, so he needed to find a way to cover it up. Burning the girl at the stake was his best bet, but he had forgotten one thing: The girl’s boyfriend was a fire-fighter! The boyfriend could tell that Benedict was up to no good when he overheard him bragging to Mel Gibson about how he was going to get away with his acid-y snafu. Did I mention that the boyfriend is played by Community‘s Donald Glover? This is significant because it adds a whole layer of confusion to the film. People often think Donald is related to Danny Glover who starred with Mel Gibson in those Lethal Weapon movies. Donald is of no relation to Danny, but that’s beside the point. In this movie, Mel Gibson is played by Chevy Chase, Donald’s co-star on Community. Chevy does a great job acting crazy like Mel, but that’s the only bright spot of the movie. Even with his Bruce Campbell face, Benedict is impossible to understand, and his delivery is terrible. Glover’s performance is a big disappointment, too. I don’t really remember who played the girl, but it doesn’t really matter because she isn’t very attractive. Even before the acid.

Anyways, the movie totally sucks. Don’t go see it, if it ever exists.

Movie Review- Cool Hand Luke

Saturday, July 7th, 2012

Cool Hand Luke is one of those movies that everyone is supposed to have seen, with quotable dialogue and memorable scenes. Isn’t it? I was under the impression it was in the same league as On the Waterfront or The Godfather, or at least other Paul Newman movies such as Butch Cascade and the Sunshine Boy. I saw it for the first time last night, and I have to say I just don’t get it.

Spoiler alert: In Cool Hand Luke, nothing happens. At all. Paul Newman barely even talks, it’s basically just him mugging for the camera. In fact, at the end of the movie, there’s actually a Paul Newman smile montage in which they string together moments from earlier in the film where Newman is smiling. It would have made a good commercial for Newman’s Own salad dressing. I kept waiting for some kind of story to develop, but instead, it’s just scene after scene of sweaty, sun-burned convicts toiling out on the road. The monotony is finally broken when Newman brags about his ability to eat 50 hard-boiled eggs in an hour, then proceeds to do so.  The back of the Netflix sleeve mentions that Newman is trapped in a hellish prison, but to me, it seemed no worse than summer camp. The prisoners got three squares a day, plenty of exercise, and were allowed to hang out on the weekends playing banjo and singing songs on the porch. This prison also seemed to be conveniently free of anal rape. It’s obvious from the singing-in-the-shower scene that any sex between inmates would have been consensual, and that dropping the soap would be a flirtation, not a dangerous mistake. You could tell how fond of each other these boys were by the manner in which they settled their differences. Instead of just shanking each other in the back, one inmate would challenge the other to a boxing match. The next day, the two fellas would square off out in the yard and smack each other around until one of them gave up or said “uncle” or what have you. Did I mention they would wear boxing gloves? This is because the slightest bit of bruising was too much for these hardened criminals to bear. Once the gentlemanly bought had concluded, the conflict would be completely resolved and the two men could go back to spooning. Note: In this context, “spooning” meant helping out your fellow inmate by spooning up some of his excess rice and eating it for him so he wouldn’t get in trouble for not cleaning his plate. You see, one of the punishments for trying to escape was that you were forced to eat twice as much rice as everyone else was eating. Another punishment for trying to escape was they made you dig a hole, then fill it back in. Of course on your third attempt to escape, they just shot you in the neck, which is what happens to Paul Newman. I said “spoiler alert” before, right? Yeah, Paul Newman gets shot in the neck. Soon after this is when they role that smile montage I mentioned, as the other prisoners reflect on what a swell guy Paul was. If anything happened after the montage, I can’t even remember. I think it was just the credits, though, and they came not a moment too soon. Cool Hand Luke feels like an extremely long movie. It takes 2 hours of your life to sit through it from beginning to end.  Eating 100 hard-boiled eggs would be a better use of your time.


Harry Potter and The Woman in Black

Wednesday, February 1st, 2012

J.K. Rowling told us all that the Harry Potter movies would keep getting darker, but nobody could have expected that they would eventually devolve into little more than B-grade horror flicks. Also, apparently, she didn’t even write a novel for this latest one, and had nothing to do with the production of the film. In fact, if Daniel Radcliffe wasn’t in it, you might not even know that Harry Potter and The Woman in Black was a Harry Potter movie at all. He doesn’t dress like Harry Potter, he doesn’t have a magic wand, he flies on a flying carpet instead of a broom, and he apparently had cosmetic surgery to remove the lightning bolt birth mark from his forehead.  The only thing he kept so that his fans will recognize him is his Harry Potter accent.

As much as this film strays from its source material, it isn’t without its charm. In fact, some of the changes are very bold and exciting. I won’t bore you with plot details, as the plot is extremely boring, but I will ruin the entire movie for you by revealing the surprise twist ending: The Woman in Black turns out to be Voldemort seeking revenge on all mankind for the botched sex change operation s/he received.  That s/he should blame “all mankind” for the malpractice of one plastic surgeon certainly isn’t fair, but then again, we already knew s/he was kind of crazy and not very nice. The real twist ending is that the doctor who removed Harry’s lightening bolt birthmark is the mentor of the intern who prepped Voldemort for her/his sex change. Naturally, this causes Harry and Voldemort to fall in love. Prepare yourselves, as their big kiss is even more awkward than when Voldemort hugs Malfoy at the end of Deathly Hallows Part 2.

Review: Stone

Thursday, October 7th, 2010

Of all the post-70’s TV show Hulk movies, Stone may be the most intense. Ed Norton returns for what we know to be his final stint as the Green Goliath/skinny scientist guy, and this time he really hits it out of the park. From what I understand, the difference-maker was research. After reading hundreds of Hulk comic books from the 70’s and 80’s, Norton was somehow able to teach himself how to actually BECOME the Hulk. This saved the studio millions of special effects dollars that they were able to put to better use. For one thing, I hear the catering on the set was top notch. Sushi was served at every meal, sometimes up to 5 times a day. Also, gold-plated oranges were served. It’s a pity that everyone threw out the peels, but you can bet there were some happy hobos gathered around the dumpsters outside the lot!

Anyway, part of what makes Stone the definitive Hulk movie is the decision to replace General “Thunderbolt” Ross as the main antagonist. Those fans of the old Bill Bixby show will be delighted to see that the new menace is none other than nosy reporter Jack McGee, played here by the great Robert De Niro. The McGee character made an appearance in the 2008 Hulk, but really, who even remembers that? De Niro’s interpretation of the nasty newsman is so sinister that its impossible to imagine him at a desk in an office talking about Dancing With the Stars with his coworkers. What newpaper could possibly have hired this twisted sonofabitch? What editor would have the balls to keep him in line?

Eventually, we see just how far McGee is willing to take things. In trying to get the big scoop on the Hulk, he throws Bruce Banner into a volcano to see if he changes. When the Hulk does not emerge from the lava, McGee is forced to go to jail for murder. It turns out Banner did change into the Hulk in time to survive, but enjoyed swimming around in the lava so much that he stayed down there for a while. Banner soon starts feeling guilty that his former adversary is constantly being sodomized by convicts, and decides to spring him from jail. Actually, the movie pretty much ends with the Hulk breaking McGee out of prison. The reporter is so touched by this act of kindness that he decides not to pursue the story any more, and leaves Banner and the Hulk in peace.

I guess the movie is called Stone because the Hulk has to smash through some brick walls to get into the jail. Neat stuff.

Review: Case 39

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

In my opinion, the horror genre has been pretty sucky since the 1950’s. Really, I don’t see how you can have a scary movie without cat people or The Creature from the Black Lagoon. Hollywood has gotten all obsessed with J-Horror and has been ripping off the Japanese fright style just like it ripped off the Hong Kong action movie fight choreography. They recently have gotten into the practice of begging some A-List actress to play the lead in this type of movie so that it seems “legit”. In this case they hired Princess Pouty herself, Renee Zellweger. I know this has been pointed out before, but Renee Zellweger looks like she is constantly sucking on a lemon. Perhaps her salivary glands produce lemon juice instead of saliva. That would be unfortunate, if true. Anyway, in Case 39, she plays a social worker who tries to save a little girl from her neglectful parents. As dictated by the formula, Zellweger is the last to know that it is actually the little girl who is evil. The parents are just trying to do the socially responsible thing by ridding the world of their sinister spawn. Of course, the little girl is evil/magic, and killing her doesn’t turn out to be so easy. She busies herself with the standard J-Horror creepy kid-type stuff, such as crawling on the ceiling like a bug, opening her mouth excessively wide, and twisting her body into unnatural positions. This behavior makes the girl invulnerable to croquette mallets, lawn darts, and paint cans, which happen to be the only things her parents have around the house to use as weapons. A priest is called, but his holy water has the unhappy side effect of making the girl gigantic and giving her tentacles lined with razor suction cups. The destructive rampage finally comes to an end when Zellweger serves the little girl/monster pancakes for the first time. It turns out the little girl’s evilness was the direct result of a sugar deficiency. Perhaps you’ll think that I have spoiled the movie by giving away the ending, but this is not the case. I have not told you what kind of pancakes were used!  Anyway, I think the whole “J-Horror creepy kid” thing is pretty played out. If Hollywood really wants to terrify an audience, they need to make a J-Horror Creepy Kid vs. The Creature From the Black Lagoon movie. Now that would be somethin’!

Review: Devil

Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

Trust me, you’ve never heard of the director or any of the actors in Devil and you never will. Seriously, this whole movie takes place in an ELEVATOR! So you have 5 people trapped in a small space, and whenever the lights go out, someone gets bitten by one of the other people in the elevator. They are all trying to figure out which one of them is doing the biting, and for some reason nobody suspects the big red guy with a pointy tail and horns on his head. That’s right, one of the people on the elevator is the Devil, and this still isn’t and open and shut case! I understand that people often try to be politically correct by not assuming things about people, but….it’s the DEVIL! There’s a little book called the BIBLE which tells all about how evil this guy is. I even think there is a chapter (John 3:16, maybe?) where it explicitly says that you shouldn’t ride on an elevator with Satan because of how likely it is that he will bite you. In a way, atheists are to blame for this awful movie. If it wasn’t for them, we wouldn’t have to pretend to give the Devil the benefit of the doubt just because he’s carrying a brief case and seems to be minding his own business.  The rise of atheism seems to have a direct correlation with preposterous misrepresentations of Lucifer in cinema. Perhaps if Sarah Palin is ever elected president this will all change, and Hollywood will go back to making classics like Ben-Hur and The Passion of the Christ.

Review: Burger Time- The Movie

Thursday, September 9th, 2010

Sometimes Hollywood takes a break from rehashing old movies  in order to make movie rehashes of popular video games instead. Most of the time these are based on action games, either involving zombies or big-breasted women with long braids. These modern games have life-like graphics and storyline formats that can keep addicts engaged for so long that they forget how to eat and piss. The stories they tell can easily be adapted into nice boring movies with over-the-top CGI effects. Old-school games, on the other hand, usually just feature a bunch of awkwardly moving shapes performing menial tasks.   These tasks are often so nonsensical that it is hard to imagine how they could be turned into a coherent movie. What you should basically expect is that, aside from the title of the film and the names of some of the characters, the movie won’t have anything to do with the game. 

One would probably assume that the plot for a movie called Burger Time would center around a chef at a restaurant, maybe working hard to impress a food critic or something. An equally predictable scenario might involve food coming to life when some kind of radio-active ingredient is added. You’d think it would take an absurd premise to make an audience believe in murderous hot dog and egg people. Surprisingly, Burger Time- The Movie doesn’t take place in a restaurant, and there is no explanation given for the existence of the food monsters.

Christian Bale stars as Peter Pepper, a Louisiana PI with a dark past. His only apparent link to the food industry is that he wears a chef’s hat instead of the typical double-brimmed Sherlock Holmes-type cap. Nobody questions this because they know he’s kind of insane, but they also know he gets results. Peter jokes that the TV show Monk has worked wonders for the public image of loony gum-shoes. In typical film noir fashion, the story begins with Peter being hired by a southern belle (Amy Poehler) who’s sister has recently died. Even though there were 25 bullets found in her sister’s back, police think the death was a suicide. Belle does not agree with this conclusion. She tells Peter how her sister had recently been hanging out with a gang of food monsters in the French Quarter. Peter knows this gang all too well- especially the leader, Mr. Egg. Their relationship is a part of Peter’s “dark past” that he refuses to talk about, which plays a pivotal roll in the film’s climax. Andy Richter gives a breath-taking performance as Mr. Egg, Don Cheadle plays his bodyguard Mr. Hot Dog, and Macaulay Culkin plays his estranged son Mr. Pickle. Given the studio’s insistence on using mascot-type costumes instead of CGI, the believability of the entire film essentially falls on the shoulders of these three brilliant actors. Director Penny Marshall, to her credit, did her part to overcome the limitations of poor production design by insisting on good, clean dialogue and subtle line delivery. Burger Time- The Movie is not big on action, it isn’t very funny, and it is not much of a drama. However, it does everything else exceptionally well. If every movie based on a video game was this good, I am certain the genre would surpass “remakes” as Hollywood’s choice of inspiration.

Review: Machete

Wednesday, September 1st, 2010

The film Machete brings to mind a very interesting question: Who the hell is Danny Trejo? Answer: he plays that homely guy in Grindhouse. Didn’t see Grindhouse? Well, he also plays that ugly guy in Spy Kids. Hint: If there’s a grisly, leathery convict-type  in a Robert Rodriguez movie, it’s definitely Danny Trejo. The guy has a face like a catcher’s mitt that someone dropped in a toilet, then dried off with a blowtorch. This, of course, is why we love him. The guy looks like he’s seen some hard prison time, which in fact, he has. He’s the real deal, and I can’t believe Stallone made Expendables without him. Unfortunately for Trejo,   he got to be in Machete instead. Who needs twenty MILLION dollars when you can have 45 THOUSAND instead?

If you’ve seen even half of the 30-second TV trailer, then you really have all the information you need. Some crooked American bastard disrespects a leathery Mexican guy, and the leathery Mexican guy spends the rest of the movie trying to stab the American with a machete. In between gun fights and knife duels, “ole’ leathery” gets it on with Jessica Alba. Believing that a young, attractive girl like Alba would fall for a gargoyle in a denim vest is not the issue here. We’re all familiar with the “King of Queens” principle, which states that attractive women are attainable for any man who has ever picked up a football and thrown it to another man, regardless of his appearance. In Trejo’s case, it was probably a soccer ball, but I digress.  The real problem with this film (in case you haven’t guessed) is that Jessica Alba is in it. Not only is she in the movie, but she’s “topfull” the whole time. If dumb male actors like Channing Tatum have to take off their shirts in movies, it’s only fair that dumb female actors have to also. Alba’s insistence on wearing clothes has ruined every movie she has ever been in, and the streak continues with Machete.  The next time Danny Trejo has to be in a movie with a clothed Jessica Alba, he should demand a raise. Nobody should have to work under those conditions.