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Posts Tagged ‘WTF’

This was not the best introduction to the Pang Brothers.

I really felt at a loss to describe Bangkok Dangerous.   The plot and ending are so loaded with cliches, it’s almost as though the screenwriters constructed a movie solely out of tired, over-used devices.   The directing is adequate, although the blue filter applied to some of the scenes gets old fast.   The primary problem with Bangkok Dangerous is Nicolas Cage.

If you read this blog on a regular basis, you know that I have a bit of a soft-spot for Cage.   My theory is that Cage got his Academy Award and then set about purposefully destroying all critical acclaim he had.   I think Cage makes bad movies on purpose.   This, however, doesn’t explain the horrible performance he turns in.

Normally, Cage likes to overact.  I can appreciate this.  It’s broad, it’s bold and it takes guts to act like that, even if it turns out to be ridiculous.

This one, however, Cage doesn’t act like much of anything.   He stares at fixed points, his face unmoving and mask-like, while he monotonously narrates unnecessary voice-overs.   Since he plays an assassin, you’d think he’d want to blend into his surroundings, but his hair is so bad you wonder when Nic Cage stopped bathing and stopped cutting his hair.   Said frightening hairdo is the most interesting thing about his entire character.  Considering this is Nicolas Cage, he of the “why is it burned?  WHY IS IT BURNED?!” fame, I am not quite sure what was going on.  Did someone give Nic elephant tranquilizers?  Was he under constant hypnosis?   Did he forget he was filming a movie?

I don’t know.   It does feel depressing that Cage is so not there that creating facial expressions seems to cause him real pain.  What sort of crazy mixed up world is this?

I watched this movie twice.  It felt like an eternity.   I’d take a pleasant, friendly visit from some Cenobites over a rewatch.

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Ouuuuuuch!   Poor Bruce Willis.

Eddie Hawkins is a thief just released from prison.  All he wants is a damn cappuccino, but before he can even get all the way out of prison, people are hassling him to take thieving jobs for them.

Enter several groups of people who want Eddie to steal the same things, a super rich couple, a bunch of government spooks and miscellaneous thugs.  What all this centers around are a bunch of crystals that Leonardo Da Vinci used to turn lead into gold.

In other words, this convulted caper centers around alchemy of all things.

Bless Bruce Willis; he’s a charming guy who has a great screen presence.  In fact, Willis has followed the John Wayne mode of acting, in which he seems to play a version of himself in every single movie.   But charm can only sail a person so far.

There’s quite simply too much going on in Hudson Hawk; there’s so many plot twists, turns and implausibly convenient events that most would be hard pressed to keep up.   Then there’s the sad fact that Hudson Hawk can’t even decide what kind of movie it wants to be.   The movie’s a caper, buddy comedy, romance, action, screwball, slapstick mess.   Every cast member tries to be too over the top, too jokey, too quirky.   Sandra Bernhard as a rich lady is just obnoxious and Danny Aiello’s sweet and funny but ends up clotheslined by the ridiculous material he’s given.   Even more exhausting is the fact that the filmmakers attempt to pack every gag possible in, to the point where I’m not sure there’s actually more than five seconds that passes in Hudson Hawk where something funny isn’t attempted.   It’s tiresome and barely any of the jokes are funny.

As far as a guilty pleasure goes, Bruce Willis is, as I said, charming and he and Danny Aiello have some fun moments where they get to sing and joke around and be best buddies; Willis can capture moments of fun, whimsy and charm – it’s just sad that nothing else about this movie can.

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Here’s where I get serious and also pose a question to you readers.

The Stendhal Syndrome is the story of Anna, an Italian policewoman who is hunting a serial rapist.   Anna has a somewhat serious problem:   she suffers from Stendhal Syndrome, a disorder that causes people to pass out upon viewing especially stirring and/or gorgeous works of art.    The rapist she’s tracking instead tracks her, following her to an art gallery where she passes out, leading him to take advantage of the situation.   What follows is a sick game of bizarro cat and mouse, culminating in a final showdown between Anna and the rapist.

Dear Dario Argento:

I couldn’t make it through your movie.   Too many graphic scenes of torture and rape sidetracked me along with crappy dialogue and bad acting.    I swore after Cannibal Holocaust that I would never force myself to finish a movie that deeply, deeply upset me and after watching you highlight the sheer brutality of rape – albeit for different reasons than Cannibal Holocaust – I just gave up.

There are many things in this world I can watch and I can handle but graphic, repeated rape scenes are not one of them.

It’s a movie relationship dealbreaker, Dario.   Thank you but NO THANKS.

-Me

P.S.:  Please stop casting your daughter in movies where she takes off her clothes/is involved in sexual situations/has a bunch of nudity.   That really, really bothers me.

P.P.S.:  No more movies about rape, Dario.

And now the question to you readers:   Do you guys react this strongly to rape scenes, or is just me?   I loathe rapes portrayed on film and it’s a big reason why I’ve never seen I Spit On Your Grave.   I know it’s a touchy subject, but feel free to drop your opinions in the comments.

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I promised y’all some non-horror, so here it is.

And I never said Movie Crack was a pretty sight, you guys.   Some of you may disown me, some of you may swear at me, but God as my witness I sure as hell love this movie.

There’s something insane and crazy about Spice World,   It is, quite possibly, the stupidest movie ever made ON PURPOSE.

Made at the height of Spice Girls mania, the movie’s nothing more than a blatant attempt at making tons of money off the fame of the Spice Girls while enabling them to run around in some seriously awful clothing doing the silliest things on the face of the planet – attending dance boot camp, meeting aliens, and partying on their double decker Union Jack bus.  It’s bad, guys.   It’s BAD.    Who cares about the story when you can have the Spice Girls frolicking all over the place?

Of course, the movie takes some time to poke fun at the paparazzi and at the public’s impression of the girls, but THAT’S NOT WHAT WE CARE ABOUT, IS IT?   No, friends, the bestest part of Spice World is the magic of the celebrity cameo.

In the words of Edina Monsoon, “Let’s get celebritied up!”

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Guys, I’m scared.

Gremlins scared the everloving hell out of me as a kid. I was terrified of them; I used to take long, flying leaps into my bed at night for fear that the gremlins I imagined under my bed would come out and eat me or something. I rarely dream, but when I was a kid I remember having Gremlins-related nightmares every so often.

Laugh all you want – this movie was scary as all get out to me. I know everyone else loves it, but it’s terrifying!

Come on, really. A guy named Billy gets a nice, sweet, innocent looking creature for Christmas from his semi-crazy daddy. Billy can’t even follow the stupid care rules correctly: no bright light/sunlight; no feeding them after midnight; no exposure to water.

This…thing…is not cute. That is horrifying. Horrifying and awful.

What happens when you get a gremlin wet?

IT SPAWNS MORE OF THEM. I shudder, y’all, I shudder.

And what the hell happens when you’re idiotic enough to feed a gremlin after midnight?

It’s like the CHRISTMAS PRESENT FROM HELL. You get something nice and fluffy and it mutates into something horribly, horribly wrong. Steven Spielberg, what the hell?! This was the part that really got me as a kid; seeing the disgusting egg sac things and watching the evil Gremlins hatch was too much for an eight year old Caitlin to bear.

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I don’t tend to discuss politics here, so I’ll leave it out of this review, aside from a small, personal message at the bottom which you’re free to skip over if that sort of thing doesn’t interest you.

Slacker Uprising is the new movie by Michael Moore, and if you want to see it for free – you can.   Just CLICK HERE to do so.   You have to confirm that you’re a US or Canadian resident to download it, but I don’t think Mike’s going to hunt you down and take your firstborn from you if you aren’t.

Moore documented his 2004 tour with stops in 60 cities to accomplish one thing that Moore makes very clear at the beginning of the movie:  “To save John Kerry from himself” and to get people to essentially vote against Bush.

Mainly, his targets are college students, and the film follows the trials and tribulations of Moore as he goes across the country trying to urge kids to kick the president out of office.   We see appearances from celebrities and songs from well-known artists, as well as the struggles of the tour to appear on some college campuses that really don’t want Moore speaking there at all.

By now we all know Michael Moore really, really well.  If you don’t like his movies, chances are you’re not going to like this one.   I do notice that he’s not marketing this one as a “documentary” but more of a “film”, which is a good step, considering none of his films are truly objective.    I’ve noticed that there’s always one thing in each Moore movie that sets me just a tad on edge about him.   In this one, it was the fact that Moore seems to style himself as the anti-propagandist, the counter to the media’s “sucking up” to the Bush administration.   There’s a fine line that Moore is straddling where he can easily become no different than a talking head on Fox News, just skewed in a different political direction, and Moore’s lack of awareness about this makes you take pause for a moment, and kind of look at him a little oddly when he berates journalists for not doing their job and, to paraphrase, forcing Americans to pay $10 to see his films to find out the “truth”.

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Family members used to say to me when I was a kid, “If you keep rolling your eyes like that, your eyes are going to roll right out of your head.” And my mother, bless her, would tell me, “Your face is gonna stick like that if you’re not careful,” when I was in awful, sour moods.

Momma, assorted family members: My eyes didn’t roll out of my head and my face didn’t stick like that, and I think P.S. I Love You is the scientific test to see if either of those statements are actually true.

This movie is so bad it has to be given the full, awful treatment. What can I say? The suffering – I’m passing it on. Think of it as paying it forward, just with badness. Strap in, grab your booze, because I’m going through this one every arduous bit.

We start out in medias res (how’s that for a fancy term, eh?) with Holly and Gerry, a married couple living in NYC who are having a huge fight. Holly’s mad that Gerry told her mother that they wanted to wait to have children, which she equates with Gerry telling her that this means she doesn’t want to have children. From this ensues the most manic, nonsensical fight I’ve seen on film in a while. It’s a lot of What Holly Thinks Gerry Says and Gerry just standing there, bewildered and defending himself, while his wife throws shit at him and has a Life Crisis.

This is where I firmly hopped on the “I HATE YOU, P.S. I Love You,” train, for two reasons: One, I loathe this sort of thing, where the woman rants and raves about things that make no sense while the husband has to calm her down, and two, because she pretty much gets away with throwing shit at her husband’s head. If you’re trying to make me like Holly, this isn’t the way. If you reversed their roles, no one would ever think Gerry throwing things at Holly was remotely acceptable, but since she’s a woman and she just threw a Marc Jacobs shoe at him, that’s okay.

Whatever.

Then they kiss and make up and Gerry says, “I’m sorry! I’m sorry!” – cue me, screaming at my televison, “FOR WHAT? MARRYING A CRAZY BEEYOTCH?” – and they go to sleep, with words of love and giggling. So, I’m already reaching for the whiskey bottle that doesn’t exist.

Also, I have a really hard time buying Gerard Butler as a devoted husband. Gerard Butler always looks to me like the drunk guy at the end of the bar with the cute accent. He’s the guy that you know is a lot of fun, but only in that he’s fun from the hours of 9 p.m. to last call o’clock and that he’s a miserable wretch for the rest of the day. So seeing him as Husband of the Year is kind of weird to me, in the sense that I keep thinking, “Don’t you have somewhere to go to pickle your liver or something?”

Moving forward.

We land in the present time, where we’re at a bar. And while we’re at it, let’s cue up the Irish Stereotype Counter right about now.

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