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Futurama: Jurassic Bark (2002)
Worth watching even if you aren't a Futurama fan
I've never been a fan of the show Futurama -- I doubt I've watched even four full episodes. But a close friend of mine (who happens to also love dogs) wanted me to see this episode, and I finally got around to watching it just last night. And now I understand why she wanted me to see it.
The story is beautifully executed. Seymour's excitement whenever he sees Fry is made obvious, but it's not over the top or in your face. Bender's jealousy gets the better of him, but he redeems himself. And, of course, Fry's well-meaning but ultimately regrettable change of heart about cloning Seymour leads to the heartbreaking ending scene.
Everyone seems to rave about the closing scene, and justifiably so, but I was rather enjoying the episode even before the emotionally charged final minutes. But that final scene, with Seymour hoping to see Fry again, and that wish never being granted, deserves all the praise it has received.
I wouldn't call myself a "fan" of the show now, but I definitely have an appreciation for Futurama that I never had before. And thanks to my friend for bringing this beautiful episode to my attention.
The Vampire's Seduction (1998)
Barely qualifies as a movie
I briefly considered checking off the "Contains spoiler" box before submitting this review, but honestly, there's nothing here to spoil. Basically, a doofus named Wally spies on some topless women, and a female vampire shows up a few times to say "lesbians" over and over in a thick accent. That's pretty much the whole plot. John Paul Fedele hams it up as Wally, but he wasn't that all funny, so really the only thing this "movie" (and at 55 minutes, I use the term "movie" very loosely) had going for it was nudity. And while this mess has oodles of toplessness from a generally attractive cast, it's simply not enough to keep me entertained for very long.
All movies get one star on the IMDb. I'll give this one a second star for the skin on display -- with Tina Krause standing out as particularly fetching. Otherwise, this film is utterly worthless.
Cheerleaders Beach Party (1978)
Nothing to cheer about
About the only good thing that I can say about this movie is that it wasn't horribly boring. Faint praise, to be sure, but that's really the best I could come up with. The storyline is slight, there's too much pointless filler, and the jokes consistently miss the mark. I didn't even know the names of the lead characters by the end of the movie, which is a pretty good indication of how uninteresting this was. And while the cast is moderately attractive, there's nowhere near as much skin as you might otherwise expect in a movie with such a tawdry-sounding title. No, I wasn't expecting anything great, or even all that good -- after all, Chuck Vincent wrote this -- but even by the low standards set by previous movies with "cheerleader" in the title, this film really misses the mark.
Typical Rafal Zielinski fare
I keep watching Rafal Zielinski's 1980s T&A comedies even though I readily acknowledge that they aren't very good. They all seem to have a hard-to-explain likability to them even though the jokes consistently miss the mark and there isn't much to enjoy about them except for bare female flesh and a nostalgia factor if you're a child of the 80s.
In Recruits, the characters we are supposed to like are actually somewhat likable, which is not generally the case in Zielinski's films. As in all of Zielinski's efforts, the cast seems to be having a good time and they aren't taking their roles too seriously. And from a purely superficial perspective, there's plenty of attractive nude skin on display, most notably from Lolita Davidovich.
Unfortunately, the film simply isn't funny, which is obviously a fatal flaw for a comedy. Had I watched this movie when I was 13, or before the internet made nudity a click away, I might have enjoyed the over-the-top slapstick combined with copious amounts of nudity. But at three times that age, the proceedings got old pretty quick.
Worth watching if 80s sex comedies make you nostalgic. Otherwise, I suggest you pass on this one.
Pandora Peaks (2004)
For Meyer completists only
Extremely similar to Russ Meyer's abysmal 'Mondo Topless' some 30+ years earlier, there's not a hint of a plot in this film, and even the rampant nudity gets redundant after a while. Pandora Peaks fills the screen with her fit body (thanks to Trimax exercise equipment -- she actually shills for the company for almost two straight minutes!) and obviously enhanced breasts, and she tells moderately uninteresting stories while we get to look at everything she has to offer. If you prefer natural breasts, Hungarian Tundi appears in numerous clips that were apparently filmed more than a decade before the film was released. Russ Meyer, meanwhile, incessantly rambles on about various places in California (particularly in the desert) and Germany, and sophomoric sound effects routinely play whenever a pair of large breasts are unleashed on the screen.
Overall, it's easily one of Russ' worst efforts. His plot-driven films weren't always great, but at least they had more than big breasts and boring commentary. The frequent nudity MIGHT be enough to please teenaged boys, but in today's internet-driven world, I doubt it.
It's SLIGHTLY better than his nudie-cuties from 50 years ago, but that faint praise is the best that I can say about this mess.
Does this even count as a movie?
It's apparent after only a few minutes of watching this mess that the filmmakers just didn't care about the final product. Yes, I recognize that this film was meant as a soft core porn, and that engrossing plots rarely occur in this type of film, but this is simply a disaster from start to finish.
Occasionally, the film tries to be funny, but when a farting and defecating dinosaur is the comedic highlight, you know your film isn't funny. Slightly more often, we'll get some dialogue in an attempt to fake a plot. But the main reason for this type of movie is obviously the nudity and sex, and here, it fails, too.
Sure, there is frequent nudity from the generally unappealing cast, but the sex scenes are, to be very kind, weak. It's bizarre watching a film when the women are all so ready, willing, and experienced at on screen nudity, and then seem so hesitant to even touch each other. It's almost as if the cast was repulsed by one another, the simulated sex was so wholly unbelievable. Observing a breast exam would probably be more erotic than this.
So, if you're looking for lame fake sex featuring mediocre-looking women along with pitifully bad writing, acting, and comedy, this film is for you. Otherwise, do yourself a favor and watch a Surrender Cinema film next time you want soft porn. Admittedly, their plots are awful, too, but at least the women are attractive in their movies.
Model Lust (2003)
I hardly know where to begin in reviewing this mess, since it is awful in pretty much every conceivable way, but I'll give it a shot, in hopes of saving a few people from the pain that comes with watching this movie.
To start off, the storyline, about a young woman who comes to Hollywood and is quickly thrust into modeling before becoming an unlikely spy, is both boring and absurd, and yet, it might be the least objectionable part of this train wreck. After all, this is a movie that on two separate occasions shows multiple minute flashbacks of scenes that concluded less than TEN minutes earlier. Admittedly, it was difficult staying awake throughout this disaster at times, but unless you have the memory span of a goldfish, I don't believe that they really needed to replay ENTIRE scenes within minutes of them originally occurring in the first place -- this merely serves to confirm just how thin this movie really is. As for the dialogue, well, it cripples an already silly story, and many of the lines are mangled by the "acting", particularly by lead actress Juliana Kincaid. It would be charitable to say that her acting skills are amateurish, and that's even by porn actress standards (and all of the ladies in this film are porn veterans, by the way). Which leads me to my final complaint about the movie -- the women. Quite simply, if you're watching this movie, you're likely watching it to see some skin, and with the exception of Mary Carey, I didn't even like the way these women LOOKED. Sure, it's a shallow comment, and a matter of personal preference, but if you like curvy women in your softcore, this movie will prove to be a disappointment.
On a final note, I know that there are some movie watchers (myself included) who like to watch horrible films in hopes of finding one that's "so bad, it's good". This isn't even one of those movies. This is a film that is so bad, you'll find yourself shaking your head in disbelief at the on-screen idiocy every few minutes, and checking your watch at least as often. This movie is nothing more than mind-numbing, life-wasting garbage.
Back Woods (2001)
You can put me in the group of viewers (or more accurately, victims) who watched this film in awe of the sheer stupidity that was unfolding before my eyes. Unless you're a friend or family member of someone involved in the film's production, I cannot fathom how anyone could enjoy this movie on any level. And no, this has little to do with the micro-budget, since I've certainly watched good movies that were made on a shoestring. It has to do with the utter lack of talent involved in the writing, acting and shooting of this mess. I don't think it was ever intended to be scary, since it's so ridiculous, but even as a parody, or send-up, or whatever they were trying to create, it fails spectacularly. This is EASILY one of the ten worst movies that I've ever seen, and watching this film is probably about as painful as giving birth was for Luther's mama.
Barnes & Barnes: Fish Heads (1980)
Without question, this is one timeless and unforgettable music video. Even though it's been years since I last saw it, I still remember every single word of the song, no doubt because I watched the video so frequently back when I was a young teenager. Now, admittedly, part of my love for this video is a result of the first time I saw it (when I laughed hysterically through the entire thing), but even as an adult, when I think of the silly lyrics and unusual visuals, it still puts a smile on my face.
I fully expected to enjoy this movie when I finally saw it for the first time a month ago. Instead, I watched one of the worst mainstream comedies that I've EVER seen. I never laughed once, and I became bored less than halfway through the movie. Perhaps my biggest problem with this film involved the characters. I mean, the ones that we're SUPPOSED to like included a raging alcoholic, a shoplifter, and a snobby butler. Still, the movie could have been a success if they had been involved in humorous situations, or even if they had the occasional funny line. Unfortunately, this film is nowhere near as funny as the title character thinks he is.
Not impressed by my first silent film...
This is the first silent film that I've ever seen, and I enjoyed it as much as I thought I would, which is to say, not very much. With the absence of dialogue, enjoyment of this film depends solely on whether or not you find Buster Keaton's physical comedy to be funny. And while I recognize that the man had an incredible knack for making these physical scenes, the gags weren't funny. In fact, I didn't laugh once during this whole movie. Now, I won't judge all silent films by this feature, and I will actually check out more of Keaton's movies, because I certainly can recognize his talents. But "College", even with Buster Keaton, is a mediocre movie.
Special Delivery (1978)
Excellent animated short
This gem of an animated short shows us what can go wrong when you forget to clear the snow and ice off of your stairs. A funny, nicely animated, wonderfully narrated short, and it's easy to see why it won an Oscar. A typically outstanding feature from Canada's National Film Board.
Beyond the Mat (1999)
Watch it, even if you hate wrestling
This great documentary goes behind the scenes and shows us a side of wrestling that we rarely get to see. In particular, it focuses on three legendary wrestlers, and their stories should provoke a wide range of emotions from every viewer. There are other stories as well, but these were generally much less interesting, and the film works best when the focus is on Mick Foley, Terry Funk, or Jake Roberts. Their stories were all compelling, and wrestling-haters who are usually so quick to dismiss this business as "fake" should take a look at this movie and see just how real it can be.
Vampyros Lesbos (1971)
Boring and uneventful movie
I had VERY low expectations for this film, and it narrowly managed to exceed them. Instead of being mind-numbingly dull, it was simply dull, and instead of being thoroughly uninteresting, it was only moderately uninteresting. That's about as positive I can be in reviewing this movie. It's slow-moving, low on dialogue, and it lacks interesting characters and scenes. Simply a waste of my time, and I urge you all to not make the same mistake that I did by watching this film.
Solid family entertainment
It's always refreshing to see intelligently written films that are suitable for kids, and I'm happy to say that this is one of them. Although it loses some momentum towards the end, this is a smart and frequently funny movie that has a good message as well. I think that people of all ages should be able to appreciate this film, and despite a few less-than-interesting moments, it is still a movie that's worth checking out.
The Pick-up Artist (1987)
Considering all of the on-screen talent, this should have been a good movie. And for the first thirty minutes or so, it still had some potential. Unfortunately, the story that dominates most of this movie is NOT interesting. Plus, I didn't find any of the characters to be likeable, which made matters much worse. So, despite a competent beginning, the film falls apart, and it was a chore sitting through the final minutes.
Best Laid Plans (1999)
A smart, entertaining movie
This was a pleasant surprise. I really didn't know what to expect, but what I got was a very intelligent movie with more than enough twists and turns to keep things rather unpredictable. It took a little too long to get everything set up properly, and it perhaps had one twist too many, but overall, it was a great film with strong performances by Alessandro Nivola and Reese Witherspoon. Definitely worth checking out.
One of the best shows ever
Even though I watch too much television, it's rare for me to become addicted to any show. This is a rare exception. Season one is now over, and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it. It's already one of my favorite programs of all-time, and even though I have doubts about how much I will like the next "Survivor" season, I'll always remember the first season as genuinely entertaining (and at times, riveting) television.
Oh, and the right person won, too!
This harmless, but generally joyless comedy is adequate as a time killer, but that's about it. Rodney gives his usual performance, and if you like most of his work, then you'll probably like this, too. I generally don't care for Rodney, and except for a few amusing lines, the whole movie has a serious absence of funny material. Watch only if you like films with juvenile humor and a silly storyline.
Who's That Girl (1987)
Just another dumb "comedy"
The laughs are few and far between in this dull movie, and I can't help but wonder about how this mess ever got made in the first place. About the only good thing in this movie is the talent of Griffin Dunne, but his best efforts were easily overshadowed by Madonna's obnoxious performance. I was able to sit through this without getting TOO bored, but that's probably the nicest thing I can say about this time-waster.
Now then, THIS was a boring movie. In fact, it's one of the slowest moving films that I've ever seen, so if you are someone who likes movies with a minimum of dialogue and action, then perhaps this movie is for you. However, if you're like me, you'll be bored almost immediately, and you'll find that even with a short running time, this movie definitely drags. Without a doubt, most people will not enjoy this movie.
Keys to Tulsa (1997)
Took too long to get going
About twenty minutes into this movie, I was already bored. Quite simply, these characters were fairly dull. Occasionally, something enjoyable would happen, but then things would slow down again. Fortunately, my patience was eventually rewarded, and the ending to this movie wasn't bad at all. However, it was by no means good enough to justify sitting through the first ninety minutes. So, I would say that the movie was mediocre overall, and considering all of the talent in the cast, I'd call this a disappointment.
Le party (1990)
Not quite good, not exactly bad...
My reaction to this film has me somewhat puzzled. I mean, I sat through the whole movie, and I was rarely entertained, but I wasn't bored, either. There were a few too many performances (singing/stripping/bad comedy) throughout the movie, but those were the only scenes where I was uninterested by the film. A few of the stories caught my attention, but none of them were given enough time to become truly interesting. So basically, watching this movie made for a painless (and joyless) way to kill some time.
The Peanut Butter Solution (1985)
At times, VERY funny
Much to my surprise, this was an amusing movie, even though it's clearly aimed at kids. In fact, in terms of "laugh out loud" funny lines, this film is better than ninety-nine percent of Hollywood's blockbuster comedies. On the downside, the story is only competent at best, and the final twenty minutes simply don't fit well with the tone of the rest of the movie. But even though the poor ending left me somewhat disappointed, it's still an enjoyable movie overall, thanks to a high number of silly scenes. Worth a look.
Major waste of time
What could have been an amusing little movie turned out to be quite the misfire. I actually was expecting to enjoy this film, but by the halfway point, it was clear that nothing interesting was going to happen. I managed to sit through the whole thing, and save for a few mildly enjoyable scenes early on, this film was worthless. I'm not quite sure how this could be considered a comedy, unless you like laughing at a large number of annoying characters. I'll admit that the acting was fine, but no amount of talent could have saved this mess. A definite disappointment.