Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Autopsy: A Love Story-review with spoilers

This movie should come with a Surgeon General warning.
            Here’s yet another bit of crap from Brain Damage Films.  This one makes “Cadaverella” look like “Evil Dead”.  Oh you have no idea how shitty this movie can get.  I can appreciate a movie that stars nobody at times.  You get what you pay for but in this case you can tell the movie forked over its entire budget wad to get its one star and that one star is a black hole called Joe Estevez. 

            Joe Estevez is the vastly less talented brother of Martin Sheen.  He’s appeared in such film classics as “Soultaker” and “Werewolf”.  You are not going to get a good performance from this goon.  So the movie starts with a bunch of various folks dying in interesting ways.  A coroner comes and gets them and needs to bribe the cops for the John and Jane Does.  He does this because there is a lucrative market in organ trading apparently. 

            Our main character is slow witted fellow named Charlie who falls in love with one of the Jane Does.  He is married to a horrible woman who is handicapped and very demanding. His boss is Dale, played by Estevez who spends his time chewing scenery.  A LOT of time is wasted in the development of the relationship between this corpse and Charlie due in part to the fact that he makes up a voice for her in his head and he takes her around to do things like he’s in “Weekend at Bernie’s”.  I can see that he is very lonely and needs to get a real friend but he also needs psychological help.
            So the body is in bad shape and sure enough the Jane Doe’s twin sister Jill comes looking for her. Charlie gets it on with her and that causes a sort of jealousy between the voices in his head.  Eventually his wife sees this and she takes a stumble down some stairs.  Charlie is able to clean up everything and essentially keep his living girlfriend who wants nothing more than to understand him.  She even gets on a slab for him to act as if he is examining her. 

            It’s an over long and poorly acted piece of shit.  The actor playing Charlie is so wooden you’ll get splinters and Estevez thinks throwing his weight around and cranking the volume is equal to acting.  It’s an awful bit of film and I really would have rather they played the music video to “Last dance with Mary Jane” and hour and half. 

Cadaverella-review with spoilers

Like you'll ever see makeup this good in a movie this cheap.
            Here’s a stupid idea from a company so aptly named Brain Damage Films.  Make a modern fairy tale on a limited budget with horror elements.  Can it be done?  Oh yes, it has many times before.  Was it done well this time?  Oh fuck no!

            This movie has a girl named Cinder who lives alone with her Dad.  All is well until her Dad goes on a business trip and returns married to an evil step stripper who brings along two odd little girls.  Sounds like a bad Dad to simply go off on a business trip and return with a new mom and step sisters in tow without even a mention via postcard.  What an asshole.    So one day she is showboating her stripper moves to him and he drops dead of a heart attack.

            15 years later Cinder is now 3 days from turning 21 and inheriting the trust fund her father left her.  Oddly enough her step mother and the two step sisters haven’t aged a day.  You’d think that a casting director would fix this.  But that would be too much work.  Cinder is a TOTALLY unlikable bitch.  She treats her semi-boyfriend, Justin like crap even though he is really into her and in a wheel chair.  She knows a girl at work named Lenore that wants nothing but to be friends with her but she wishes harm on her. 

When this ever changing world in which we live in makes you give it a try say "Live and let die."
            This comes to a head when she enlists the aid of the Baron Samedi from voodoo lore.  He appears with all the trappings of the villain out of “Live and Let Die.”  Telling her that he will “make things happen for her”. Sure enough horrid things happen to Lenore and the guy she crushes on, Cash, shows an interest in her when she summons the voodoo god out of the tiny idol made of sculpy.

            Cash hooks up with her then kills her and buries her in a shallow grave.  Turns out he’s been hooked up with the step mother the whole time.   Baron Samedi shows up at her grave and gives her until midnight to get revenge.  Nice that of all the murders in the world this stupid girl seems the most justified to him.  So she goes to the step mom’s place and crushes her head while she is in the bath.

She's only this bitchy because a house fell on her sister.
            Then she heads over to Justin’s place.  She tells him she loves him which I admit thank goodness at least he is smart enough to think is bullshit as well as any sane person.  She vanishes, leaving a small gift.  Do we find out what the gift is?  I think you give the movie far too much credit.  Then she goes over to Cash’s place and kills two of his amigos.  He talks to her a bit before she stabs him in the heart and he bleeds to death in a very dull fashion. 

            She takes Cash’s motorcycles and tells the audience this is the worst birthday she’s ever had. Then we see Baron Samedi get the two never aging step sisters and take them with him saying “Leave the wigs.”  They do and we get a “The End” credit.  What the fuck is that?  Well it’s one thing when you are so cheap that actors have multiple roles.  In this case Lenore was the Step mom and Cash was Justin but damn this movie it seemed like it was all about cutting costs.

            The credits roll over outtakes which are really about as ludicrous as the rest of the film.  There is nothing scary about it and nothing really funny about it. The charm of a modern fairy tale is lost when your princess should have been beheaded for being a wretched shrew.  It’s all about class and even a cheaply made movie can have it some times.  This movie has NONE.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The Japanese Tom Savini

            In particular I wanted to talk in part about three movies briefly I’ve seen recently where the special effects were done in part by Yoshihiro Nishimura, the Japanese Tom Savini. Tom Savini in case you didn’t know is a very well known special effects man who specializes in gore and the horror genre.  Nishimura has a style that is really interesting.

Go ahead.  Make my day.
            For those of you that enjoy “Kill Bill” and the geysers of blood then this is the style you will get. The first movie I saw of his was a fun little bit of ridiculousness called “The Machine Girl” It’s about a school girl out to avenge the death of her brother and his friend at the hands of a ninja yakuza gang.  When the gang chops off her arm she attaches a machine gun and becomes all sorts of badass.  Yes it is mighty ridiculous and it’s gory as hell but of my god is it ever a fun ride.

But can she juggle three?
              “Toyko Gore Police” was one Nishimura wrote and directed as well.  It had tons of head explosions and upped the ante in a big way.  This time making a story a surreal tale about a privatized police force that hunts down insane creatures with tumors in the shape of a key.  It’s a bizarre one but it is still worth a rental.  But not nearly as much fun as the last one I am going to mention.

Ooh! That's gonna require some stitches.
            “Samurai Princess” was about a feudal Japan but with a twist, there are people that are hunted down because they are “mechs” or humans with weapon body parts.  It’s A LOT like “Tokyo Gore Police” in a lot of ways. But the plot moves a lot smoother. Still it’s seems like a comic come to life in a lot of ways.  But I really think there are a lot better movies that do that in an original fashion as well without being too odd to even Western audiences. 

            Still, if you can stomach the fountains of blood they are worth seeing.  It is a nice for a bit of something different if all you are used to in Japanese cinema is Kurosawa, Monster movies, or the standard J-horror with the little girl with long hair in front of her face. But start off with “The Machine Girl”  it’s the one with a plot that is at least most together even though everything about it is over the top.

Don’t Look in the Basement-review

Ever get the feeling you are about to be axed in the back Nurse?
            This movie is not bad.  There are some things that are strange as hell about this little early 1970s horror movie.  For one thing it was released with “The Last House on the Left” in drive in theater in a double bill so I imagine that must have been a fun as shit night for a person.  “Come on honey.  Let’s go see a rape horror movie tied with a movie about crazy people that include necrophilia and axe murder.”
            The next thing is the other title it can be found under is the “The Forgotten” and believe me that title makes a shitload more sense.  It’s not until the final 8 minutes of the movie that we even SEE the goddamn basement and you never hear the warning “Don’t look in the basement.”  So what marketing guru felt that that was such a catchier title?
Why yes, I am a sex symbol. Thanks for asking.
The movie is set in the Stephens Sanitarium. The doctor here thinks it’s totally groovy to let the inmates wander about since he thinks their insanity will just fuck off.  This proves his undoing as he gets an axe to the back from one of the inmates in a truly comical situation which is a mixture of irony and pure asshole on the part of the nurse in from of him for not telling him to duck.
This causes the only remaining doctor to appear to be Doctor Masters.   Who is greeted by a new young nurse Charlotte Beale.  She is tormented by many of the inmates and while the fear grows it finally ends with a mad twist which is not too bad in terms of good 1970s horror.   I think it’s actually pretty fun and in terms of 1970 psychological horror it works well. 
This was her e-harmony picture.
The acting is VERY over the top and considering that the folks are dangerously insane it sort of works to the story’s benefit.  All in all it’s not a bad movie for a creepy movie night though do try to watch it with other things and think of this one as the palate cleanser of sorts.  It might be good but it’s not like it’s going to be something that will give you a fright. 

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Likes that you hate, and visa versa.

I like to watch movie critics online. One recently posted a list of movies that he likes that other people generally hate and then he posted a list of movies that he hates that other people generally like. He then told people to send him ideas on his board.  I liked the idea so I thought I’d write a few movies for both category and let you know what I think.  Of course, all this is subjective and I’d love to know my reader’s lists of personal likes and hates as well. 

5 movies I dislike that everyone else seems to like.

The Usual Suspects- This movie is all just trying so hard to be clever and then you get the ending and I’m sorry but its interesting but if that were a cop worth a shit he’d have been able to notice an asshole looking around the room making the story up.

Boondocks Saints- A shoot ‘em up revenge story that so many people enjoy.  But I find the characters very uninteresting and their motivations very unappealing.  All in all it’s been done a lot better.  To this movie’s credit though Willem Dafoe brings us a great performance.

Ice Age- Somehow this movie warranted 2 sequels.  How did that happen? There are some parts are slightly amusing but really I felt the jokes were all trite and it was done better when it was the “Jungle Book”.

Avatar- The great blue hype.  I’ve already written my review on my feelings on this one. It rips off a ton of films and it’s got baloney for science fiction.   

Citizen Kane- I can’t really get into movies where you don’t like the protagonist.  In this movie the main character is an asshole and has no redeeming qualities and he keeps getting worse until his death.  There is little to identify with someone like that.  So as much as the cinematography is great for the time it does squat for me.

5 movies I like that everyone else seems to dislike.

Waterworld- I enjoy the atmosphere of this world.  Kevin Costner sucks in it but the over the top acting of Dennis Hopper and the sets and the way the world works really catches my eye and intrigues me. 

Cable Guy- This movie was a guilty pleasure for me.  A friend and I enjoyed watching it a lot and the dark jokes and the little nuances to it really made this pretty enjoyable for us.  It reminds me a lot of my buddy Justin. 

The Punisher- A story of a dead family and revenge.  Yes it had been told before and I know it will be told again.  But I liked that it was a Marvel movie that wasn’t afraid to be gritty and go for the violence of a hard R rating.  It didn’t pander to audiences to sell tickets and it felt like the comic should have been.  So it felt like a genuine movie at least.

I Heart Huckabees- This is an odd movie.  There are aspects that I find really amusing because the dialogue was quick and clever.  The cast was really good and kept it together but people didn’t like it.  Go figure.

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull- I seriously do not get why folks hate this movie so much.  It’s not any more ridiculous than the other movies.  Some people say that the other movies involve religious touches to it.  I think Indy said it best “Depends on who your god is” I guess if your god is a crystal skulled alien it applies.  The whole series is bases on the old serials of the 40s so they are meant to be big, grand and amazing.  There are aspects of this movie I don’t care for.  But I still think it works.  

            Well as I said earlier I’d love to know what you reader’s think. Be sure and leave your comments. I’m curious what movies you might like that other’s hate or what you hate but think other’s enjoy.  It’s a neat way to find out about people. 

Monday, February 14, 2011

Taintlight-review with spoilers

This guy is wiping with the script.
            I grew up reading MAD magazine so I appreciate a good parody when I see one.  There are times though that just banking on popular subjects for the sake of the subject will get you an absolute piece of crap.  To this movie’s credit it stays on track with the “Twilight” movie.  However that only means you get sprinkles on top of your shit sundae.

            Oh did I offend you with a shit joke?  Then this movie is clearly not for you.  This movie rides shit jokes to the ground harder than Slim Pickens rode the bomb in “Doctor Strangelove.” I counted about 13 which seem to be a lot for a spoof about teen romance between a vampire and a human.  There is a lot of material to use and that is what they use.  But what do I expect from Low Budget Pictures?

            Anyway they start with a disturbing redneck taking a shit outside.  He is vocalizing it like a three year old going on the potty.  He gets killed by a mystery killer.  Next we see Stella Ennui our Bella character driving her car.  She is going to live with her Dad since her Mom had “committing suicide disease.”  She ends the car ride saying “On the bright side I’m getting my period.”  Good for you.

I'm sure this guy is who girls imagine when they think of Jacob too.
            Her Dad comes out in a big fake mustache.  He spends the movie ogling her and having incestuous passes at her.  Then Jack comes over.  Jack is the Jacob character.  He’s not Native American and it’s really a bad case choice.  Stella just says “He’s the first boy to finger me.”  Zoinks man!  That is a little too much information.

            He takes her to the school which is clearly a community college since Stella and just about every other student is covered in tattoos.  Stella meets some new friends one of which is a metro sexual stereotype and the other is just a total sexaholic.  The Mullen family shows up.  Edgar is our Edward.  There are close-ups galore and considering the actors don’t seem to wear makeup Helen Keller could have done a better job filming this.

            You meet a character named Jock De Queaf.  He rambles about literally nothing and vanishes.  His character is pointless.  It’s basically there to pad the film like a diaper.  Once his scene is over the movie moves on and we get a red haired girl running from vampires.  She gets caught and bitten.  Sure enough she turns and she becomes the Victoria style character, but like the other women in this movie they didn’t hide any of her tattoos.

            The true vampires are actually the more amusing characters. The redhead girl talks like Harley Quinn out of Batman and one of the vampires says the one funny line in this movie “all true vampires are over the top”.    I liked that.  The evil vampires are actually amusing at times.  Then we get the stupid, STUPID dialogue between Edgar and Stella.   For example:

Stella: I hate the rain.  I hate anything wet.
Edgar: Do you beat up your vagina when you get turned on? 
I know it hurts honey, but yes, you are in this movie.
Aliens wouldn’t find that funny.  So when Edgar is supposed to save her from a car and the budget is low what can you do?  Well this movie has Edgar save her from a mime.    Edgar constantly tells her to fuck off and then in the same breath tells her “I’ll talk to you tomorrow.”    Oh and since he can’t fly with the effects they have him teleport her with all the effects of a shitty Dr. Who episode. 

            What happens in the sunlight?  Does he sparkle?  Nope he ejaculates bubbles.  Highbrow stuff.  Stella walks home and she is attacked by evil vampires but a werewolf Jack who has awful makeup and is dressed and dances like Michael Jackson saves the day.  Going to a really topical joke huh?  Clever job movie. 

            The Mullen family doesn’t play baseball but says they play Frolf even though it’s clearly ultimate Frisbee with oodles of SKA playing.  There is a pose off with the evil vampires then a fight which is awful.  When “Jesus Christ Vampire Hunter” has better fight choreography watch out.  Jack gets and beat down and then Edgar saves the day.  Edgar gives one vampire the three point exploding heart technique from “Kill Bill”.  He wins and he asks Stella to prom.

            They end with another incest joke for the Dad and the red head wanting revenge like in the original.  I’ll give it this.  It’s a short movie clocking in at just 1 hour long.  The jokes are very low brow and the production value is super low.  It feels like a college film between friends.  I felt like there were inside jokes I wasn’t getting. 

            I can’t recommend it.  It’s not my taste at all.  But hey if it’s your style of humor or if you thought the jokes that I mentioned were up your alley it might work for you.   I really think if they are going to attempt a spoof of such a popular subject they should try harder then tons of shit jokes.  Maybe true “Twilight” fans would find it more interesting but I think they would find it just as stupid as I did.  

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans-review

This is the face of a man you can trust.
            Anyone who follows me on Facebook knows I’ve been on sort of a Nic Cage kick lately.  The man walks a fine line in his movies.  Since he is one of those actors that never says no to anything it seems he gets offered tons of bullshit.  But if he has fun doing a movie it shows and a movie, while being really weak, can still be wildly entertaining while Nic Cage is having fun.

            In “Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans” he chews so much scenery he must have been shitting drywall for a month.  He plays Terrence McDonagh a cop that saves the life of a criminal about to drown in a prison cell during Hurricane Katrina.  The result is a back injury that leaves him addicted to Vicodin and any other drug he can get his hands on. 

Times fun when you're having flies...get it?  Lizard joke
            He steals drugs, he trades sexual favors and he bribes criminals for information as well as uses very over the top tactics to threaten folks while strung out on cocaine. He is a gambling rapist and in no way a good person and the whole movie I wanted to see something BAD happen to him for the way he treated people and how selfish a person he was.  He reminded me of Alonzo Harris in “Training Day” except not nearly as smooth and without the comeuppance.

Dammit, I'll give you DEATH PANELS!
            Speaking of “Training Day” which also had the lovely and talented Eva Mendes, she is in this as well.  In fact the cast is really decent and well picked.  Say what you will but Brad Dourif he deserves a lot more credit for the roles he plays.  That guy is always a great actor in just about everything he is in.  If you aren’t familiar with who he is look him up on IMDB.  Hell of a character actor.

            So with the great cast and story which is a perverse twist of “Training Day” it retains its entertainment value.  Nic Cage is a spaz when he is on drugs in this movie and it’s really fun to watch him have so much fun.  It’s not like he is just bored and going through the motions to get a check like “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice”.

Still waiting for him to play Fu Manchu though.
            All in all it was a worthy renter.  It’s nothing a fan of “The Shield” will not have seen countless times.  Mostly you’d come to see a derivative dirty cop movie with the added benefit that it’s got Nic Cage acting super over the top. If you are in the mood for that then you might just be in for a treat after all.  

Friday, February 11, 2011

A.I. Artificial Intelligence-review

Got something to say sweetie?
            Well what can I say?  It’s a good movie for a retelling of the Pinocchio story.  I have a few nitpicks but that aside the acting is really decent.  First off in the beginning we have a company that is trying to make a robot that can love someone. That is why they want to make a child robot that can imprint completely to a human.  But all that just reminds me of the assholes from “Blade Runner” who try to make Replicants who are “more human than human”.   Even the professor making the boy says “But in the beginning, didn't God create Adam to love him?”  For fucks sake you are a man of science!

            It’s like that Frankenstein mentality of scientist trying to be God.  Still I don’t get it.  In a flooded world where green houses gases have plunged the planet into a chaos wouldn’t humanity NEED to adapt by building technology that would serve them doing tasks that humans found dangerous or distasteful. 

            Isaac Asimov came up with the three rules of robotics:
  1. A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
  2. A robot must obey any orders given to it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
  3. A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.

And always let you're conscience be your guide.
What the hell is wrong with these rules that folks in sci-fi movies just feel the need to make a Galatea character out of Robots?  Anyway David, played by Haley Joel Osment is able to bank enough on his cute kid factor. Meanwhile, Jude Law is kick ass as Gigolo Joe.  Now see, this is a need I can imagine people in the future wanting a market for. 

Hi I'm a PC and I can't do shit.
            My next biggest nitpick is the Aliens.  Yes there are aliens excavating Earth and they are able to read wee robot David’s mind.  How the hell can you read a Robot’s mind?  Can they tell what a Mac or a PC is thinking?  Anyway turns out these aliens can clone some of the remains they find in their excavations.

            Problem is they SUCK at it.  Apparently the creatures they spawn aren’t clones per se like you’d expect.  No! That would make sense.  Instead we get some bollocks about how space time can only be traveled once so the people they bring back only live one day.  What the hell?  Ok identical twins are essentially clones does that mean if one of them dies the other can only live a day more in this world?

Talk to the hand Osment.
It’s an okay movie to rent.  However it’s not without its flaws which stick out like a sore thumb.  It’s long and needlessly complicated.  It seems to try very hard to arty and follow the Pinocchio story taking you to complex concepts rather then simple notions.  Oh, and it was nice to see that in the future apparently the World Trade Center was rebuilt before the green house gases flooded New York. 

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Buried –review

And Ryan thought sex with Scarlett Johansson was rough.  
            Oh man this movie was great.  I am so impressed by the thrills and just how much Ryan Reynolds could bring such an emotional performance to the screen.  There are twists and turns which really make it clever and the ending is brilliant.  It was really a winner. 

It's the wood that should fear your hand, not the other way around.
            Ryan Reynolds plays Paul Conroy, who is a truck driver in Iraq whose convoy was attacked.  He finds himself buried a huge wooden coffin.  Thank goodness it allows him to move around completely in this coffin.  Too bad he didn’t study under Pei Mei.  Maybe he could have punched his way out.

            It’s a very claustrophobic movie since it’s all filmed in the coffin.   That is all you see.  I think that makes the movie work well since the set shrinks around the character.  It’s got very political overtones which are very interesting sad as this situation becomes so dreadful.  I really don’t want to spoil the ending since it’s really quite impressive.

            Conroy has a phone with him and he tries desperately to save himself calling his boss, the pentagon, his family and 911 and he is put on hold constantly.  His frustration is felt in great detail as I can imagine how awful it must suck to be on hold when you are buried alive and time is important.  

Ha Ha you got me! You wacky Iraqis!
            Considering what an awful way that would be die it’s a great concept for a thriller.  There is a lot going for this movie and I think folks should give this a shot.  It’s a really clever movie that does a lot with so little.  There is a lot to it and it’s a great big downer but it shows the talents of an actor that I was really surprised by.  That is the type of movie I love to see.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Titanic 2- review with spoilers

Regrets? I've had a few.
            Let me tell you about the ship of dreams. Oh and not the boat that sank in 1912 only to have a movie made by James Cameron which still holds box office records.  No I’m talking about the boat that they decided to launch that tempted fate a second time.  Titanic 2.

            First off let me start by saying this is an Asylum picture.  Much like my review of “Paranormal Entity” I watching it knowing it was a cash grab by a studio wanting to get folks by the title and box art alone.  If you are sad enough to rent this one sometime do yourself a favor though.  Sit through the previews, they are so damn funny.  The gag reel is pretty worth while too.  90% of this movie is behind a green screen and it shows.  I’ve seen video game characters out of CD-rom games from the nineties that look better than this.

God himself couldn't sink the Titanic 2
            The beginning of the movie shows an asshole surfing through glacial waters.  At first I am shocked since I can only imagine how dangerous that is but apparently it is a sport that people do and yes it is incredibly dangerous.  His luck doesn’t last though since a chunk of ice falls and the wave pummels him to a quick death.  Then we start our grim title.

The movie takes place 100 years after the sinking of the original ship.  A rich asshole has recently made a luxury cruise liner that looks just like the real RMS Titanic and decided to tempt fate and call it the Titanic 2. There is a lot of talk about how they are even going on the same route as the original ship’s maiden voyage.  Yet they are taken off from New York and going to Europe so it’s actually the opposite route. 

Kim knows it's better to look good then to feel good.
            A scientist named Kim summons the Coast Guard to her Arctic base where it’s so obviously a green screen it’s laughable.  I’m pretty sure Arctic scientists don’t roam on glaciers dressed only in wind breakers and jeans (and Kim in full make up and her hair done).  It gets really bad when in the dialogue they say the effects of Global Warming on an ice glacier (as opposed to those lava glaciers you hear about) is causing ice to calf into the water creating giant tsunamis which send icebergs at the Titanic 2.

            Already I can’t begin to fathom who decided that this was a conceivable idea. For starters let’s imagine that the ice from the glacier they are talking about calved at the size of Rhode Island.  It’s not going to cause a wave to destroy ships miles away.  Know why?  These things have happened before. In 1988 the Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf calved off a chunk of ice the size of Delaware and in 2005 the Ayles Glacier dropped a chunk the slightly larger than size of the island of Manhattan.  My point is it didn’t cause a tsunami.  Seismic activity does that. The writers should have gone with a reef to hit or Somali Pirates or something relevant. 

            Considering the ship looks like it is the same model as the original Titanic it actually doesn’t have a bunch of men in the lower decks shoveling coal in the furnaces and it’s actually full of all the amenities of a cruise liner.  One of the nurses even pauses to read a book called “The Original Titanic.” What the hell?  Who would title such an idiotic book unless knowledge of the second titanic was common place? 

I don't know about you, but I intend to write a strongly worded letter to the White Star Line about all of this.
Well it doesn’t take long for the boat to get hit and sure enough.  Despite the announcement to remain calm people IMMEDIATELY scream and fall to their feet like they forgot how to walk.  They fight for lifeboats while three people we don’t care much about try to make it out.  They are the two ship nurses, Amy and Kelly.  Amy has a thing for the ship’s owner Hayden who is a rich douche who is never seen without a girl in his arms. The Captain of the ship meanwhile quips “Looks like history is repeating itself.”

            Still I guess this movie wants you to feel there is some stilted romance to go with.  They find Kelly in the infirmary all cut up so despite the fact there is probably bandages all over the place they tape a credit card to her wound to stop the bleeding.  That is a new one on me.  There is a large explosion and people are dying all over.  I guess with out a small band to calm people down it really makes a difference.  “Gentlemen, it's been an honor playing with you tonight.”

            A second tsunami hit the ship and turns it into “The Poseidon Adventure” and killing all the folks in the lifeboats.  Luckily Amy finds a wet suit and a breathing tank.  But Hayden drowned in order to save her.  I guess if his character was developed or he was clearly not a womanizing douche then it would matter.  Amy is the sole survivor when her father comes to rescue her.  Oh and that is the one recognizable star of this movie.  Bruce Davidson plays her Dad.  Oh you don’t know who that is?  Well it’s just the old man that played Senator Kelly in “X-Men.”

You should see him in the gag reel he knows full well this movie is bullshit too but someone wanted to make rent that year.  The movie really is a piece of crap.  The acting is as phony as the background and the script is as cookie cutter as you would see in a YouTube video.  Still with the right mindset it can be fun to make fun of.  So if that is what you are looking for more power to you and may your heart go on and on.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Logan’s Run-review with spoilers

            When I was wishing my cousin Bonni a Happy Birthday today she asked me “What movie would I review for her birthday?”  It’s a question I never have been asked since I started this blog.  So I had to think about it what might work for that very reason.  Then I figured that “Logan’s Run” is wildly appropriate to anyone aging. 

The movie starts with this bit of text:
“Sometime in the 23rd century...the survivors of war, overpopulation and pollution are living in a great domed city, sealed away from the forgotten world outside. Here, in an ecologically balanced world, mankind lives only for pleasure, freed by the servo-mechanisms which provide everything. There's just one catch: Life must end at thirty unless reborn in the fiery ritual of carrousel.”

In the future women wear very little it turns out.
            Ok so what can I tell you the domed city from the outside looks like the trolley system Mr. Roger’s would use to pull in and out of his land of make believe.  The inside is a 1970s shopping mall.  Which is appropriate because this is a 1976 movie; and this is apparently their vision of the future. A future where the women wear very little and the clothes and sets look like they came right off the original “Star Trek” set. 

            It’s in this futuristic dystopia we meet Logan 5, played by Michael York, or for you Austin Powers fans out there Basil Exposition.  Turns out everyone at birth in this society gets a crystal implanted in palm of their hand that changes color as a person ages.  It’s called their Lifeclock. When they reach 30 it is considered the person’s “Last Day” and the clock blinks red and turns black at which time they are supposed to report to Carrousel which is supposed to give them hope of Renewal, which I guess works like reincarnation for them.
I think it's the smiley face that makes it really funny.
            Logan has the sweet gig of a Sandman.  This means he hunts down and kills Runners, which are people who don’t report to Carrousel. He and his buddy Francis 7 make a game out of it toying with a Runner before killing him and taking his personal effects which include a silver ankh.  I guess it beats watching the Carrousel ceremony.  Apparently all that happens is the older folks that have their Lifeclocks expire wear insane hockey masks while they are lifted into the air like a high wire act.  Then bolts of lightening hit them and they are killed as the crowd shouts “Renew!”  I don’t get it at all. 
            Apparently instead of using the internet for porn after the big war our ancestors will have a thing called “The Circuit”.   It allows you to meet anonymous people for sex which is how Logan meets Jessica 6 played by a cute Jenny Agutter.  She leaves without having sex with him which just chaps his ass but he does notice she has an ankh pendant.
Question: Why are people in Future D.C. British?
            At his headquarters Logan turns over the personal effects from the Runner he killed and the computer scans the ankh.  It tells Logan that it’s the symbol for a group of Runners attempting to reach the “Sanctuary”.  It gives a secret assignment to Logan to find and destroy the Sanctuary.  To make sure he can pass as a Runner the Computer speeds up Logan’s Lifeclock 4 years so that it now blinks.  The computer has put him in a position where he is alone working on this mission and as complete screwed him now. He doesn’t even know if he’ll get the time back that was taken from him since every time he asks a question to the computer it gives no response. Fucking Windows ’98.
            So now Logan recalls that Jessica had an ankh and seeks her help.  She is skeptical seeing as how he is a Sandman and all but eventually she witnesses him help another Runner and starts to trust him.  However Francis spies this act of mercy and goes on the hunt for Logan and Jessica.  So Logan goes to a futuristic plastic surgeon to try to get a new face.  The secretary is Farrah Fawcett playing a girl named Holly.  I wonder if her character is upset that every girl in the city has stolen her hair style.
            The machine that gives surgeries operates like a torture device in a Bond film.  It’s a spindly crab of laser arms that works on your face and body.  The Doctor tries to kill Logan and Logan fights the Doctor and kills him with his own odd device.  Francis is hot on their trail.  Logan and Jessica escape by going into an orgy room where Francis is slowed a tad. Then they are stopped at one of the Runners hideouts and are stopped by what can only be described as spears with glowing vibrators on the end that shoot steam.
At this point Logan still wants to destroy the Sanctuary so he gives off a distress beacon.  The Sandman cavalry arrive and kill just about everyone.  Logan and Jessica escape into what looks like a huge ass basement. Then using an ankh to unlock the door a door they find themselves in an old fish farm under the city. They find an elevator and then comes something I thought was so bizarre it was surreal.
I make C3PO look butch!
They end up in an ice chamber with frozen animals all over and people in little alcoves.  Logan and Jessica encounter a really sad looking robot named Box who looks like the head of C3PO with a dome body who tells them it’s his job to preserve food.  So he freezes anything that comes down this hall including Runners.  Logan hates stupid robots that don’t’ follow Asimov’s 3 rules of robotics so he shoots Box and they escape.
            Once free they discover the crystals Lifeclocks have become clear so they are free of the Sandmen.  They discover the ruins of the National Mall in Washington D.C.  It’s actually kind of cool to hear folks looking at these monuments that have returned to nature in many ways and marvel at them wondering what it all means.  They come across an old man living with several cats.  They are both very impressed and marvel at his grey hair and wrinkles.
            The old man is just happy to have someone to talk to since he has just been talking to the cats.  Francis appears and puts up a fight.  Logan tries to convince him to fuck off but he won’t give up.  So Logan beats him to death.  Francis’ final words were congratulations to his friend, "Logan... You Renewed!"
He knows if you've been bad or good so be good for goodness sake.
Logan, Jessica and the old man go back to the city to tell the inhabitants what they've learned.  The old man won’t shut up the whole trip back so I wonder how long it will take for that novelty to wear off for them.  The old man waits as Logan and Jessica reenter the city. 
Logan and Jessica are arrested after yelling at a crowd of Carrousel attendees and are brought before the central computer for interrogation. Logan resists, but the computer system accesses his mind. When the computer asks if Logan found Sanctuary, his mind replies, "there is no Sanctuary." The computer complains that this "does not program". This causes the computer to break down, setting off explosions and blasting the city seals open. The people leave the city, and the young citizens meet the first old man that they have ever seen.
            That is it.  I suspect the hedonistic culture didn’t last long in the real world and they died of exposure shortly after word.  All in all it’s not a bad movie. I liked it for what it was. And I enjoyed its views of a post apocalyptic ageist society.  But that robot and tossing in Farrah Fawcett for the fuck of it just seems like it’s there for no other reason then to be there.