Archive for » December, 2005 «
More to come…
*psst…buddy….your comic book nerd is showing*
Remember back in the day when you were wee tike in elementary school, dreaming of being a superhero? And being that your small world mostly revolved around school, your superhero daydreams usually took place at school?
Welcome to Sky High.
Young Will Stronghold, son of the worlds most famous super heroes, Strong Hold and Jet Stream, has come of age, and is ready to start his freshman year at Sky High, the local high school for Super Hero offspring. One problem though….Will’s powers haven’t developed yet! Heading in to the first day of school with no powers, the first day of orientation include the Powers demonstration where the students get split into two groups: Heroes and Sidekicks. Being the son of Stronghold and Jetstream with no powers, how will Will hold up!
Starting out with this simple plot arc, (think Jocks Vs. Nerds) Sky High starts the ball rolling, and does nothing but gain momentum on the way. Filled with a great story, excellent special effects and a great cast, I can’t review this movie without sounding like a fanboy! Watching with child like glee, as you see the various students with their super powers, you find yourself sucked in and flown away to Sky High yourself. Add in luminaries like Lynda Carter (Wonder Woman!) as the school principal, with spins and all… Bruce Campbell as the gym coach, Sonic Boom, Dave Foley of Kids in the hall fame as the sidekick Mr. Boy, Stronghold’s former sidekick, Kevin McDonald (also of KitH) as Mr. Medulla, the mad science teacher with oversized brain to match and Kurt Russell and Kelly Preston as Stronghold and Jetstream. The cast is top notch, and it shows! Add to that a competent cast of teenagers, many on their first role, and you feel like your gawky nerdy freshman self all over again!
So, all I can really say is….go rent Sky High. You’ll love it. If you’re among the few that think the beginning’s too cheesy, stick it out, it pays off.
I’ll give it 5 spandex tights out of 5.
Being a former comic book nerd, I went into this knowing the very basic’s of the existing story line, etc. I’ve never read too many of the Hellblazer comics, but I knew of it, and vaguely what it was about.
That being said, I sat through Constantine somewhat excited, and somewhat apprehensive because of Keanu. With a convoluted story line, heavy on religious imagery, history, etc. it was a pretty tall drink of water to dig into. Once I figured out what exactly was going on, (about half way through) I was pretty pleased for the most part.
Keanu was fairly week, but that’s to be expected. Thankfully, he was propped up by the lovely Rachel Weisz as the reluctant to believe detective with a dead sister. Filled with special effects out the wazoo, some good, some great, some bad, there was a fair amount of action and explosions to keep things interesting. The downpoints being the CGI’d versions of hell and Satan’s son, and Satan himself was a little to over the top cornball to get into.
What it all boils down to, I enjoyed watching this flick, but it leaves be hard pressed to be either excited about, or bad enough to loathe. Guess this makes Constantine the height of mediocrity!
I’ll give it 3 crappy demons out of 5.
Just like Tombs of the Blind Dead, Zombie (2) comes with mountains of hype. Another thing to point out, is the 2 in perenthesis. Zombie 2 (the euro release name) was released in the states and Zombie, due to it being the unofficial sequel to Romero’s Dawn of the Dead overseas. With that in mind, Zombie 2 doesn’t have a whole lot to do with Dawn other than there’s dead guys in New York.
Moving on…..as I stated above, Zombie 2 comes with mountains of hype. Directed by Lucio Fulci, Italy’s unofficial master of gore and things undead, we’re presented with a slightly gritty, definitely gooey look at a tropical island invasion.
Opening with a boat arriving in New York’s harbor, appearing empty to the naked eye, we soon find out that there is in fact a passenger aboard. You guessed it! Finishing off the opening scene with the zombie being blasted into the harbor via gunshot (not to the head mind you), we soon leave New York for the rest of the movie.
The owner of the boat, an estranged scientist who has been heard from for quite some time, raises the suspicions of his daughter. With the help of the friendly New York city reporter, they deduce that her father was last seen on the island of Matul, so off we head, to investigate the dissapearance of said father.
Once on the island, the fun begins. Taking a voodoo school of zombie thought, we are then quickly introduced to the zombie onslaught. Filled with greusome death, zombie snacking and the like, the tale unfolds in a fairly creepy fashion, and a solid sense of despair from the few remaining island inhabitants. (the live ones anyways) Myself, not being necessarily a ‘fan’ of gore, but not really minding it overall, I found myself many times wincing and squirming with many of the mutilations contained. From impaled eyeballs, to freely flowing jugulars, there’s enough goo here to make even the hardest of the horror hardcore squirm a bit.
Filled with goo, suspense and despair, Zombie 2 did not dissapoint, and I for one look forward to digging deeper into the Lucio Fulci catalog!
I give it 4.5 brainssssss out of 5.
Linnea Quigley folks. Need I say more?
Well, ya, probably. Fans of 80′s cheese fright (notice the web site name) will recognize Ms. Quigley (and her two best friends) immediately. Beyond that….don’t worry, you don’t know any of these people.
Standard 80′s horror fare, this time with demons. A group of teenagers hole up in an abandoned funeral home, for a halloween party. As the party dies down, they decide to try their hand at a seance to liven up the party! Soon, people are being posessed, people are being disembowled, yada yada yada.
Night of the Demons offers nothing over any other 80′s fright fest, (except Ms. Quigley’s breasts, which do in fact appear in a few other 80′s horror flicks) especially the classics a la Friday the 13th and Nightmare. Still, if that’s what you’re into, then it delivers. Fun and laughs, and not much to really be scared about. Except for the dissapearing lipstick. That was a little disturbing. Other than that, good times when your friend Al Green or Mary Jane are in town, and a good nostalgia romp for genre fans.
Just don’t come expecting Shakespeare folks
I’ll give it 3 muenster’s out of 5
Touted by many across the internet, The Blind Dead is considered by many to be a fairly scary, good zombie flick.
With that in mind, I waited eagerly for the netflix mailer to show up in my mailbox.
Unfortunately, sometimes I’m faced with dissapointment.
Settling in to dig into The Blind Dead I had visions of zombie knights pillaging country sides, in a dark and macabe tale of gory brilliance. What I witnessed those, was an excercise in boredom.
Don’t get me wrong, I fully expect a movie considered terrifying in the early 70′s to be tame by today’s standards. However, the Blind Dead grows tedious at times. A slow start, and a good half hour before you see zombies, once they finally arrive, you’re forced to wait another 10 min. before they start to chase their prey. (I know zombies are slow and shambling, but c’mon!) Combine that with a myriad of corny characters clad in 70′s finery, and, well….it’s just not that good.
All that aside, the story is vaguely entertaining, and got me to sit through to the end to see the outcome. You see, way back when, during the crusades, there was a certain sect of the Knights Templar that, after raiding in the far east, came back worshiping satan and black magic. Once they were found out by the king to be kidnapping virgins for the sacrifices, they were strung up to die, while the crows plucked out their eyes. Buried in their castle, to wait the day for random spanish tourists to get mad at their boyfriends, jump off a train, and wander unwittingly into their smelly undead clutches. yah, that’s pretty much it.
So, in not so many words, I’m glad I finally saw it. I semi enjoyed it enough to watch it all the way through, but must say I was firmly let down, given all the hype.
I give it 2 Undead guys out of 5.
Ah HBO, how I love thee.
After first being drawn in by HBO’s Miniseries take on Band of Brothers, and then being swept off my feet by HBO’s original, Deadwood, I eventually decided, being an HBO Original, how can Carnivale be bad?
Taking a misfire the first time around, catching episodes out of order, I finally decided to grab the DVD set.
Settling down to start the series, you are immediately sucked in, by the floating atmosphere of mystery and wonder, surrounded by the 1934 carnival and freakshow. Deep and mysterious characters abound, with the lowly Ben Hawkins, escaped from the chain gain, Brother Justin, a mysterious Methodist minister full of fire and brimstone, and love for his flock. The stern but caring Samson, the dwarf carnival manager, to Carl Jonesie, the love confused head roustie. Deep and involving characters abound in Carnivale, each with their own tale, their own problems, and their own….abilities.
Throw in a long and meandering plot, rife with religious overtones, general sideshow freakerie and the like, and you find yourself abosorbed in the plot as well. In Deadwood fashion, each episode leaves you clamboring for the remote to start the next episode, because really….how the hell can you stop now after THAT just happened!
With word that Carnivale was cancelled after season two, and no word yet on a release date for season two on DVD, things look bleak for Carnivale fans. But, rumor has it, the writers had forwarning that cancellation was imminent, so we are able to have some closure by the end of season two. One can always hope!
Ultimately, Carnivale is no Deadwood. It’s no slouch either. If you like a taste of the supernatural, a good mystery, and carnies, then you’ve found a good home in Carnivale.