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This movie was hella funny, along with good story and acting from the main stars. The rest of the cast was alright. Anyways, everyone wants to see this movie for Key and Peele, not some other actors nobody ever heard of. And they were super funny.
The kitten was an amazing actor, cute too. Too bad the kitten isn't there for most of the movie, because this is a kidnapping movie (catnapping?).
Keanu is basically an ultra-high quality Key and Peele skit. The violence is surprisingly strong, bullets blasting open chests and bloody chunks go everywhere.
Crocodile Dundee (1986)
More culturally complex than you think
Last night I picked another gem from my past, Crocodile DunDee, which released 1986. I remember watching this movie with mom. She absolutely loved DunDee and his rough and straightforward perspective on life. Now that I watch it years later, I see many similarities between Dundee and Mexican immigrant perspective.
Both perspectives cut the bullshit* and adopt a nihilistic sense of humor. Dundee was very happy in his homeland and left for USA, a strange place where his customs seemed just as alien to everyone else. In the movie's conclusion, as opposed to real life, the Americans embrace the well-meaning, friendly foreigner and take on some of his customs, such as greeting him by saying "G'day!"
Furthermore, the villain Richard (albeit a light villain) is presented as the a-hole not because he is DunDee's romantic rival, but because he openly mocks and belittles DunDee for being a foreigner and being unacquainted with western culture.
DunDee functions as the immigrant's fantasy existence, being accepted in America while retaining his cultural roots.
Only God Forgives (2013)
Only God Forgives is one of the best neo-noir films ever made. For a long time Sin City wore the crown for the genre. But compared to Only God Forgives, Sin City appears corny and mostly for kids.
The visuals grab you from the very beginning. It has a totally original style that's beautiful and mysterious. The director isn't afraid to dwell in the moment, establishing the thick Bangkok atmosphere. Long stretches of silence heighten the tension before it explodes in moments of extreme violence. The acting is amazing enough to require only a few lines of dialogue.
It's really disappointing that the IMDb community has underrated this film. Most of the negative reviewers are complaining that it doesn't have enough action. Don't people get tired of watching the countless predictable shot-em-up gangster movies? OFG is being punished for having originality. Maybe people were turned off by foreign actors that--for once--didn't play the role of noble savages like so many "magical negroes."
I highly recommend this to anyone who enjoyed Taxi Driver or classic noir films. Also, the director dedicated this to the experimental film director Alejandro Jodorowsky, which tells you this movie has a psychedelic element. In the end OFG will divide audiences: on side side there's people who demand substance and innovation. On the other side are people who can't wait for the next Expendables movie.
A Low Down Dirty Shame (1994)
After all these years, I can finally scratch this one off the list. I'm a big fan of Keenen's work. Who doesn't love In Living Color and I'm Gonna Git You Sucka, c'mon now! But somehow Shame went under my radar.
Straight up, it wasn't as good as I'm Gonna Git You Sucka, which is pure comedy gold. But it was definitely a perfect movie to watch after coming home from work and just wanting something that doesn't involve a lot of thinking but still fun to watch.
Everything about this movie is pretty mediocre: the action lacks explosions, the gun play is a little tame, and the bad guy isn't very "bad." What saves this movie is Keenen's charisma. The dude is really funny and can carry flimsy plot all the way to the end. It felt as if he were missing an equally strong partner, such as Lethal Weapon's set up, but Jada sorta fills that role with her strong personality. I just wish they would have given her more screen time.
All in all, cool movie to chill out with.
This beer is stale
I was hoping for something like "Hot Fuzz," instead I got a cold fish. The director, or whoever was in charge, was fixated on the plot and monsters--everything else damned.
I admit that Grabbers had some of the coolest monsters I've seen since Attack The Block. They looked and moved realistic enough to make me forget it was CG, which too many times looks like something off Xbox. But everything between those awesome scenes was death: the acting sucked, the jokes weren't funny, and only the town drunk was worth remembering.
This movie is excruciatingly slow. After a killer intro, be sure to grab a pillow and set your alarm clock because you're going to catch some Z's. The boredom is amplified by boring characters that are desperately waiting for some monsters to wake up the audience.
A horror-comedy must have both elements. Grabbers wasn't funny to be a comedy, nor scary enough to be horror. It hangs in limbo never really committing to either genre as hits every cliché' including a forced romance and the ultimate cliché' ending we've all seen too many times.
DMT: The Spirit Molecule (2010)
The Spirit Molecule was informative and entertaining introduction to DMT. My research on the pineal gland, which led to DMT, uncovered a flood of pseudoscience and nut-jobs. I keep an open mind, I but stop listening once the speaker ventures into the Illuminati and ancient aliens. No thank you, I'll watch X-files instead.
The documentary anchored itself in science then plunged into metaphysics. Half the panel were accredited professionals; the other half were artists, writers, and mystics. Surprisingly, the opposing sides complimented each other by providing an insight connected with their expertise. Besides introducing DMT, the documentary addresses the role of psychedelics in ancient and contemporary life.
Now for the problems: 1) Though Joe Rogen is a funny guy, his role as the host lowered the overall credibility almost to a mocking level.
2) The speedy cuts between interviewees and visual effects was very distracting. Many times I stopped listening to speaker because the psychedelic visuals kept distracting me. Also the trippy soundtrack, which was neat at first, was overdone. A good director would have sensed when artistic team was going too far.
I enjoyed this documentary and recommend it to anyone with an interest in science and metaphysics.
Stoner comedy done right
Now this is funny, man. It's great to finally watch a comedy that actually made me laugh and smile to the credits. Why the insanely low score? There must be a lot of narcs without a sense of humor, man.
I'm a big Cheech and Chong fan. No, I wasn't high when I watched this. In fact, I was totally sober. The super raunchy humor was enough to get me slant eyed. Even my wife, who had never seen a C&C flick, cracked up. But, really, this one is mainly for the hardcore fans.
The only thing that bummed out this movie was the stiff animation. It made everyone seem like robot stoners. The colors were bright and pleasing to the (bloodshot) eyes. They really should have opted for an animation team that could have matched the physical comedy to the voices. Regardless, I had a blast watching this. Grab your best buds and have a groovy time, man.
The X Files: Aubrey (1995)
The only reason I gave it a 6 is for the tripped-out visual effects. Outside of some interesting camera work, I consider my time wasted. The story begins with a promising intro: a woman gripped by inexplicable visions is led to a terrible discovery. Nice, where's it go from there? Down the rabbit's hole? More like down the Hershey tubes.
There are too many instances that will make you say, "Oh, give me break!" For example, the female victims of a serial killer have the word "SISTER" carved on their chest. The duo is studying the bones of a male victim, but they can't quite guess what was carved on his chest. Could it be--oh I don't know--"BROTHER"?
Midway through the writers lost control of the wheel, and the plot goes swerving across the road like a drunk driver. They desperately try to reconcile the mess with an utterly flimsy explanation. On second thought, I'll give it a 5.
Le tableau (2011)
A beautiful picture
It's a been a while since a film has filled me with wonder. The idea and visual effects created a world that makes you wish you could crawl through your TV. Every aspect of this movie soars: dialogue, character, story, visual, tone, etc. By comparison, the American animated movies seem too safe and predictable.
The visual team did an excellent job of creating a painted world in terms of how it looked and functioned. Some very clever thinking went into deciding what's possible within a canvas. The plot was straight forward, the painted characters fear they have been abandoned, but has enough substance for serious introspection.
The Painting is an excellent film for children and adults. It tackles some more serious themes than most American cartoons: racism, death, and philosophical questions about our purpose and creation. I'll be looking forward to seeing more films by the highly imaginative director Jean- Francois Laguionie.
The Toxic Avenger (1984)
I can't believe I waited so many years to watch this AWESOME movie. There's so much good stuff that I don't know where to start. First off, I haven't had this much fun watching a movie in years. It's a gross-out comedy that purposely violates all the Hollywood rules while basking in the 80s feel-good attitude.
With most B-movies, I hardly expect more than a few exaggerated kill scenes punctuated by filler, not this one. The characters are exaggerated to the point of becoming a real-life cartoon. Mark Torgl's facial expressions alone will brand themselves into your permanent memory. But this over-the-top hilarity is balanced by their ability to really make you feel their inner pain. The director, Lloyd Kaufman, also creates moments of true desolation while somehow keeping it funny. Somehow he gets you to feel sorry while laughing at the misfortune of those poor bastards.
What makes this movie great is that "anything goes," but it doesn't toss out everything else expected: original dialogue, competent actors, and cohesive story. The only thing this movie lacked was better film quality. The lack of funds are definitely apparent camera department. But, with an astronomically low budget 475,000$, these film makers should be commended for making Toxic Avenger cult classic.
Street Trash (1987)
Great effects, not much anything else
I was hoping for a Toxic Avenger quality flick. The cover looked awesomely disgusting so it looked promising. Straight up, Street Trash has some of the coolest gross-out effects I've ever seen. The hobos really looked like bums. I'm still wondering if some of them were picked up on the spot, or at least bought the clothes off their greasy backs.
Unfortunately, Street Trash scraps everything else. There's no story, character development, or dialogue. Apart from the hilarious "keep away" scene, there's hardly a reason not to push the fast-forward button. Burton, the gas-mask wearing bum, was the only guy with any charisma. Too bad he only played a supporting role to the main character, if you can even call him that.
Toxic Avenger is legendary not just because of the grotesque special effects; it worked because characters were actually funny and likable. We empathize with Toxie when he's shunned by his mother and has to live in the dump. A lot of these Troma-inspired directors concentrate exclusively on the shocking deaths and forget to give us a reason to watch the remaining 75% of the movie.
Street Trash is cool if you're just in it for the effects (which are awesome). Everyone else will be let down. Damn, this movie had such great potential.
Rapid Fire (1992)
I love cheesy 80s action cinema. But even with my heavy bias, this movie sucked. First off, there isn't a single charismatic character. Brandon Lee lacks anything remotely qualifying as a personality as he dully recites badly written lines. His partner, a father-figure cop who fails to convince anybody of that, spends the entire movie telling cliché' "you can do it" lines. And the two main bad guys are boring as stale turds.
They could have saved this movie by cranking up the bad acting--it's worked for countless actors who can't act: Van Damme, Schwarzenegger, Lundgren, etc. But the audience can forgive their lack of Oscar winning performances if they are at the very least memorable. After the credits roll, everyone in Rapid Fire is rapidly forgotten.
According to IMDb, John Woo was Brandon's first choice for director. It's truly sad that a potentially awesome movie was butchered into mediocrity by an incompetent director.
The fight scenes and shot outs are fairly decent. Don't expect any spectacular stunts or awesomely choreographed battles. Some of the fights were outright disappointing considering they play up Brandon as a martial arts bad ass. The gun play is enjoyable at best.
The story was total garbage and Brandon couldn't pull off a single convincing emotion or joke. The dude was a mannequin with six-pack abs. And don't get me started on that godawful love story they tried to shove up our asses at the last second (face palm). With so many awesome 80s movies to watch, take my advice: Look elsewhere.
The X Files: Excelsis Dei (1994)
Hot nurses and sex-starved wheezing geezers
A nurse is raped, she claims, my an invisible horny old dude. Right off the bat, it's funny and disturbing. The X-files team investigates the old folks homes which kicks off a series of geezers kicking the bucket. Dark tones crammed into a claustrophobic, spooky setting reminded me of John Carpenter and Nightmare On Elm Street: The Dream Warriors.
The story nicely develops the traditional "haunted house" story by combining elements of alternative medicine and shamanism. Excelsis Dei seems to continue on the last episode's concern of using experimental substances on people; though, whereas the last episode is more science- fiction, this episode takes the paranormal route.
I'd mark this one as a "good episode." The only problem was that by trying to include the science fiction, while this was obviously a supernatural tale, the plot was spread a little thin. They should have concentrated on the fear brought on by the break down of logical reality and science. Luckily, the episode holds strong by interesting guest actors who were quite disturbing. (Wheelchair bound little old ladies talking to empty hallways will creep anyone out.)
The X Files: Red Museum (1994)
Banjos and beef
I can't get enough of X-files in Hickville. It's the perfect combination: ultra-intelligent aliens with country bumpkins. The writers really cranked up the creepiness in this episode. Teens are found wandering around in the woods with mysterious messages on their backs. Meanwhile, a stranger is spying on a family through a peephole inside their house. That's some twisted stuff.
A cult of vegetarians exists in the middle of beef town. The writers excellently portrayed the bigotry against them, which exemplified the fear of the unknown. The cult could have been better utilized, so much potential for additional weirdness.
Towards the end the story begins tripping over its shoelaces. Various aspects are left unexplained by plot holes rather than authentic mystery. Luckily, the episode's strong feeling and great acting make the few story glitches entirely forgivable.
The Toxic Avenger Part II (1989)
Pass on the wasabi
I watched part 1 a few days ago and totally blown away, so much that I craved a second helping. Toxic Avenger goes to Tokyo, the land of weirdness, has to be cool, right?
At the start something immediately stuck out. They slapped a Halloween mask on the Toxic Avenger. It seriously looks as if the make bought a mask at Target. Part one got Toxie's look perfect. How could they screw up this bad? And not just the face, his entire outfit looks slapped together.
The beginning opens up with some gory awesomeness. It's looking to be a good movie. Everything is looking good until Toxie goes to Tokyo. At that point the movie really takes a plunge. There's a few over-the-top scenes were great to watch. Everything in between those scenes seems slapped together on the spot. Maybe the film crew felt out of place in Japan.
It just didn't have the confidence of the first one. Actually, scratch that, part one is the only true Toxic Avenger movie. Part two should have paid for its dishonor in the true Japanese fashion by disemboweling itself for shaming a classic.
Sleep Dealer (2008)
Makes Elysium look like Sesame St.
It's great to finally see a sci-fi that does global injustice right. Elysium was pretty good, but it doesn't capture the gritty realism the way Sleep Dealer did.
This drama is effective because it hits close to the reality between US and Mexico. It takes that godawful situation and built a very interesting story intertwined with a technology that could one day exist. The combination of poverty with technology makes for some awesome cyberpunk.
The CG is a bit on the crappy side, but I could overlook it because the movie was story driven. It didn't rely on special effects. The visuals that did work did awesomely. They helped build the tone and didn't function as cheap shortcut.
Say adios to high budget garbage.
Bailout: The Age of Greed (2013)
(Almost) Taxi Driver for our generation
I was expecting a mindless "going postal" movie with zero acting and a lot of cheesy one-liners. Assault on Wall Street is a hard hitting drama that makes you experience the anguish of an ordinary man systematically destroyed by Wall St. corruption.
There's many similarities between this film and Taxi Driver. The main character goes through a transformation as a normal guy pushed to extreme violence in a believable way.
Assault on Wall Street does has it's shortcomings. When killings start, the movie shifts away from a real drama to a deranged fantasy. The assassinations are glossed over in typical action Hollywood style where the main character becomes a "bad ass" rather than having the reactions of a human being he was at the beginning. The director steps in hard present him as a hero instead of letting the audience judge the actions of a vigilante.
In the end I gave it ten stars because it had the guts to made. It calls out the elephant in the room: Wall Street corruption has robbed our country because they own it. And it's so blatant that they've finally made a movie out of it.
Machete Kills (2013)
Ultra Cheesy! Viva Machete!
First off, there's some really butt-hurt movie watchers whining about Machete kicking too much ass. Well, Machete don't act for butt-hurt nerds! Man, there was blood, guts, exploding heads, hot babes, and GUNS! GUNS! GUNS! Everything you need for an awesome movie night with friends who actually have a sense of humor. Yes, this is a get stoned to the bone flick. Look, if you're into Grind House, disregard all the negative hater reviews on here. I put this one up there with the cheesiest of classic kung-fu movies. This is a movie that's all about having fun. It's a living breathing cartoon with buckets of violence. Don't forget the munchies, maaaaaaaan.
Reign of Fire (2002)
I waited a long time to watch this movie because I thought it was going to suck major. It's surprisingly, good. Maybe not epic like Lord of the Rings, but it holds its own for movie night. Basically this is a Godzilla movie done in a western style. If you like Godzilla then you'll love this. And if you're into post-apocalyptic themes mixed medieval references, then you're going to have a decent movie to watch.
The dragons look pretty good considering what year this was made. It's the pyrotechnics that make this movie stand out. The flares are amazing. I'm not just talking about the dragon spitting fire, which looks fantastic, but the world itself. Every shot effectively gives the impression that the world has been burned for centuries.
Matthew McConaughey gives an awesome performance as the leader of the American dragon slayers. This guy is a killer. It was so out of his normal character that it took me a second to realize it was him. Christian Bale played his expected somber role he's popular for. Matthew stole the show.
Underrated to the max
This is one of those movies that make me ignore the overall rating system. Currently it stands a 6.0. Surrogates has a tripped out story, great acting on Bruce's part, and enough action to keep it exciting without going full Die Hard.
Surrogates takes the idea of social media to a whole new level. I give extra thanks to whoever the writer was. It's on the level of William Gibson (Johnny Mnemonic). Don't be discouraged by the mediocre rating. This is sci-fi gold. I gave it a 9/10. The story could have been pushed a little further in my opinion. Too bad they didn't invest the time it deserved. This could have been legendary status. Super awesome isn't either.
John Dies at the End (2012)
First let me state that I didn't read the book. The whole time I was watching this movie I kept thinking this was a cheap mash up of other classic flicks. Body snatching aliens: "The Thing." Super drug that makes you mega smart: "Limitless." Finally seeing an alien world that is always around us: "From Beyond." Two goofy potheads save the world from aliens: "Dude Where's My Car."
Every borrows from everyone else, but this is borderline plagiarism. It would have been interesting to see "John Dies at the End" emulate these films and then develop an original concept.
The movie itself was decently cool. The beginning really grabs you. Somewhere around the middle it sort of starts falling apart plot-wise (maybe it should of borrowed a story as well). But for a movie to get drunk and stoned to, it'll get the job done.
The Razor's Edge (1984)
The first sucky Bill Murray movie I've seen
This movie sucked. I did "get it," and it sucked. Why Murray! Why! Why did you finally make a movie that totally blowed? Who know's what the answer is to that, but the point is that this movie sucked. Maybe everyone, even the greats like Murray, needs a sucky one. I wish I didn't watch this. Please be funny. I will try to forget this crapatacular flick.
I've been on a Murray marathon for about a week now. I've watched Lost in Translation, Moonlight Kingdom, The Man Who Knew Too Little, and I can't remember the other one, but this last movie just ruined a perfect kill streak.
Most people will say that I don't appreciate drama, or that I couldn't handle Murray's transformation. I do like drama, but I couldn't handle Murray's transformation from awesome to eating balls. That is what this movie is: a big ball eating contest with Murray wearing the crown.
Straight up Rocked!
This movie was so cool! Let's get ready for the storm of butt hurt nerds that are about to rant about how lame this flick was. Are you serious? They must be high on crack. This is one of the most tripped out sci movies to be released in a long time.
I watched this not knowing anything about who directed or the connections with the previous Alien movies. I heard it was mega sick and so I purposely avoided anything that revealed anything about it. From the intro shot I knew this wasn't going to be any ordinary movie.
Now I admit there is some hardcore cheesy aspects of this film. But c'mon, you gotta go with the flow. Remember, this is a movie, not a documentary on anthropology. This film definitely takes you for a ride. You think you got the overall vibe down about what's going on, and then BAM! You're like, "WTF!" Visually this movie is a work of art. Why don't more movies aspire for looks this good?
This movie gets a 10. END OF ARGUMENT!
Zack and Miri Make a Porno (2008)
Blue Balls anyone?
When I first heard people talking about this movie they made it sound like the forbidden fruit of comedy. A certain mystic surrounded "Zack and Miri Make a Porno." I wondered if this was truly a gem or another over hyped flick.
You probably heard what this movie is about. Two life long best friends that live together and never had sex are put in a financial crunch and opt to make a porno to pay the bills. First off the idea that a man and woman that have known each other all their lives and live together, not ever having sex, comes off as unrealistic. I ignored this aspect and rolled with the film. The cast was looking pretty so I figured they'd crack me up.
The movie opens with an "American Pie" sex comedy feel, but with grown up losers instead. Seth Rogen play the same role he does in all his movies, the high school dude that never grew up. No that I have anything against that because he does it well. Elizabeth Banks is the hotty best friend that's given up the booty to everyone except this poor sucker. Banks isn't very funny and her acting skills are forgettable.
The first half of the money is fairly funny but nowhere near as good as "Knocked Up." Early on the story is predictable, Zack and Mari have a thing for each other and emotions will get tangled up when shooting a porn. By the mid point the entire movie turns into a full on love story at the major expense of the comedy factor. At this point it was hardly worth watching so I skipped around looking for some good parts.
If you've seen all Rogen's majorly funny movies then don't waste your time on this one unless you're a hardcore fan. If you take out the sex, the movie falls flat on it's face. Do yourself a favor and just watch a regular porn if that's the reason you're interested. Hopefully my review will save somebody a precious hour of their life.
I Melt with You (2011)
Good director, bad writing
Man it this movie got me mad because it started off so great. Really edgy and dark stuff, it felt almost too real. The theme of balancing being a grown responsible man and cutting loose like a teen hits a raw nerve. I can best describe this movie as "The Hangover" The Dark Side Edition. But past the mid point the writing went from ultra real to "yeah right." super predictable ending that isn't even worth waiting for. I will give it to the director though, the movie itself is really a work of art. The actors were great. I don't blame them, they did the best they could with such a lame plot line. save yourself a big disappointment and watch something else.