Demotivational Poster of the Day

Demotivational Poster of the Day

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

End Game (2009)

Brad Mayfield (Kurt Angle) is a vicious criminal who takes pleasure in kidnapping, assault and deranged murder. Officer Dan Burk is trying to stop hist lust for blood, while the stakes of the game quickly rise because of Burk's romantic involvement with a beautiful woman. She is Mayfield's next victim. When Burk's girlfriend and his daughter are kidnapped, the case goes from just a job to a race against time to save his family.


Where do I begin with this little gem. End Game is the story of a serial killer Brad Mayfield (WWF/TNA wrestling legend Kurt Angle) who begins a killing spree, starting with a beautiful dancer. An ugly-douche detective is hot on the killer's trail, who begins playing mind games with him as well as on the victim's stripper roommate (Jenna Morasca). Lots of talking ensues, a bland murder happens here and there, a lot of sex and strip club scenes occur (fully-clothed the entire time), and so much other nonsense that I honestly could not believe while I was watching this piece of garbage. Let's see, what else went on. Our lead girl wears the same outfit sleeping, at a funeral, and casually. The killer calls our "hero" in the middle of the night from outside the city limits where it's a gorgeous sunny day. The swat team consists of 4 guys in jeans and t-shirts that say POLICE on them. Um, our "hero" is an insufferable moron that treats his family like crap, cheats on his wife with the lead chick, and gets away with his douchbaggery scott free; no comeuppance. Apparently, the retard child is the REAL hero of the movie. Our lovely director, Bruce Koehler and writer McCartney James (BOTH of whom do NOT deserve those titles) apparently did absolutely ZERO research into how the police/detectives run serial killer cases. It's as if this film was made my young, ambitious children. Here's a guess on how they did this film: whatever budget they came in with, 75% of it was given to Angle and the remaining 25% was used to create this abortion of a film. There is a TINY list of films I tell people to avoid and this is definitely one of them. I don't think critics should be allowed to tell people what to and what not to watch, and I hate being in that sort of position, but god damn, this movie was awful. Bad acting, bad writing, TERRIBLE continuity, horrible directing. I wish that none of these people would ever work in the movie business again.


*/*****


1/5 Stars

Highway (2002/I)

Jack is caught with the wife of his employer, a Vegas thug. The thug sends goons after Jack, who convinces his best friend, Pilot, to flee with him. Pilot insists that they head for Seattle, but doesn't tell Jack why. The goons learn from Pilot's drug source where the youths are headed, and they follow, hell bent on breaking Jack's feet. On the road, Jack and Pilot give a ride to Cassie, a distressed young woman. She and Jack hit it off. They pick up an aging stoner headed to Seattle for Kurt Cobain's memorial, and they help a circus sideshow family. Why is Pilot so set on Seattle, will the goons catch Jack, and is there any way the friends' competing needs can be resolved?

This movie captures the nihilistic spirit of grunge quite well. To those who have already decided that life is meaningless, that idealistic quests are hopeless, and that death is the pinnacle of experience, Highway may seem to offer vindication. A little closer look, however, reveals that the turmoil and trouble in these peoples lives emerges directly from their own violations of age-old guidelines for human behavior. In their more loving and charitable moments, the characters demonstrate that life does indeed have meaning and is well worth living, even if only for the bonds that we build with each other before we die. Highway is much better than I expected from the reviews I read. The characters are well developed, the relationships realistic, the dialogue is smooth and the acting is excellent, especially for a bopper flick. Heck, I queued it up just because I saw Selma Blair in something else and thought she was great. Im very glad I took the time to watch it.

I love all of the actors in this movie. I stayed up later than I should've watching this movie cause of it's fun!

****/*****


4/5 Stars

The List: Stone Landmark

Thursday 8:30pm-Midnight at Landmark Grille: 1633 N Halsted, btw North and Willow; Lincoln Park; 312.587.1600 Hit this chili throwdown between assorted chefs from Boka group restos (Landmark, Perennial, Boka, and Stephanie Izard's upcoming Girl & The Goat), where 20 bones'll net you a bottomless bowl (chipotle-bourbon venison and beanless smoked brisket are some of the rumored selections) plus a cup for all-night keg access to 25-cent Dogfish Head brews including the 90 Minute IPA, though if it takes you that long to finish one maybe $20 isn’t such a great deal.

Normal Watches
At Black Market Caviar: 1945 W Chicago Ave, btw Damen and Wolcott; Ukrainian Village; 312.624.8893
Out of the fashion hotbed that is Normal, IL NW crafts inexpensive and colorful digital tickers like the cartoon-Hendrix-rocking Total Experience; the green/gold 4:20, with painted hands permanently resting on said special time of day; and Fast Food Monster, a freaky combo of Wendy, Ronald McDonald and Colonel Sanders that most people just call America.
It's about time you checked all the crazy styles at NormalWatches.com

Mini Keg Amplifiers
Assembled in Chi by a dude with a dual appreciation for suds and sounds, these tiny keg-tastic amplifiers are compatible with a guitar, bass, or an MP3 player, and come equipped with a power switch, LED power indicator, and volume control, which you could probably use if you emptied that keg yourself.
Make your late-night Lenny Kravitz performances that much more potent at Etsy.com

Armani Exchange UnderwearAX takes underwear to a new dimension with sleekly designed, ultra-comfortable new AX styles made from imported PIMA cotton, and blended with stretch materials to keep up with all your moves. Super soft – Ultra comfort – Armani style – you're going to want to grab a few pairs.
Behold the future of mens style at ArmaniExchange.com

Stone Beer Week
Starting tomorrow, the Cali craft beer colossus is finally distributing to Chi and's celebrating with a week of events and tastings at assorted spirits stores and brew-friendly joints all over the city (Hopleaf, The Publican, The Map Room), giving you ample chances to check out brews like Arrogant Bastard Ale, and Ruination IPA, the consumption of which among students has a similar effect on GPA.
Seriously, they're going to be everywhere. Get the full rundown of events at StoneBrew.com.





Eve's Beach Fantasy (1997)

Straight-A student Eve (April Adams) lets down her hair -- and then some -- house-sitting at her uncle's posh beachside place while he jets off to France for a vacation. When a fashion photographer invites Eve to model for a shoot, she gets an erotic education … with help from her voyeuristic neighbors and thrill-loving friends. Director Henri Lumiere's walk on the wild side co-stars Brendan Claybourn, Samantha Phillips and Brittany Andrews.


This is like a porn film from the mid 80s, but without the porn. It's poorly written, poorly produced, poorly acted, and just generally dreadful. Granted, with a film like this, you'd hardly expect quality, but it's really, really bad. And unless you really like very, very fake breasts, it doesn't even have the nudity going for it. Plus, it's a pet peeve of mine when they have used up old strippers playing the part of teen/college age girls. Beverly Hills 90210 was bad enough. This is pathetic. Don't bother. There are far better skin flicks out there with far better production value and more attractive casts.


I know what you're thinking here. Why did he even watch this? Or better yet: why did he decide to critique this movie?! "Keep it to yourself, Fnord!" Truthfully, I was looking for the shortest movie on my Netflix Instant Queue to watch and this was it. I don't know how it came to be on my list, but it was there. It could be the fact that I'm a fan of other Troma films such as "Class of Nuke 'Em High" and "Toxic Avenger". This might be the worst Troma film I've ever seen and that's saying a lot!


*/*****


1/5 Stars

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

How to Be a Serial Killer (2008)

HOW TO BE A SERIAL KILLER is the story of Mike Wilson, a charismatic, educated, and articulate young man who has found his life's purpose in exterminating people. Mike is determined to spread his message about the joy of serial killing and recruits a lost soul named Bart to be his pupil. Mike leads Bart through the ethics of serial killing as well as teaching him various lessons in disposing corpses, balancing work and play, methods of killing, and many many more. Mike and Bart's curriculum is interrupted when Mikes girlfriend discovers what's beneath her boyfriend's charming exterior and Mike and Bart must kill their way out of being discovered by the cops.


If you're a fan of Dexter, this movie isn't for you. Yes, it's about a serial killer, but it lacks the character development of Dexter, as well as the interest of a code for the killer (the movie mentions one, but it is barely present). If you're a fan of Dark Comedy, this also isn't for you. The film never quite figures out what it's trying to be - interspersing (supposedly) amusing analysis and "self-help" style monologues with an overarching storyline. Part mockumentary, part serial killer slasher, with comedic parts few and far between, the first 20 minutes will tell you all you need to know on if you like it or not.


Although somewhat enjoyable, this film should not even mention serial killing. Serial killing is a distinct series of actions, different from mass murder or other any other murder for that matter. This movie completely misses the mark on serial killing. Apart from that, its really just your average comedy with a bit of a mockumentary twist that fades in and out. Its very amateurish and looks like just about anybody's first film (only with a huge budget). Overall, I think that Luke Ricci shows some potential to be a mediocre filmmaker in the future but the only things keeping me from giving this film one star are its originality and the acting.


**/*****


2/5 Stars

Repo Men (2010)

In the future humans have extended and improved our lives through highly sophisticated and expensive mechanical organs created by a company called "The Union". The dark side of these medical breakthroughs is that if you don't pay your bill, "The Union" sends its highly skilled repo men to take back its property... with no concern for your comfort or survival. Former soldier Remy is one of the best organ repo men in the business. But when he suffers a cardiac failure on the job, he awakens to find himself fitted with the company's top-of-the-line heart-replacement... as well as a hefty debt. But a side effect of the procedure is that his heart's no longer in the job. When he can't make the payments, The Union sends its toughest enforcer, Remy's former partner Jake, to track him down.


Jude Law and Forest Whitaker might not seem like a perfect duo, but they work very well together in this pretty good cyberpunk thriller. The movie looks great and the music is awesome. The end gets a bit wonky, and there's a bit of a cop-out to it, kind of a twist. Not for the feint of heart or weak of stomach, though. There is some moderately strong gore and what I guess might be considered cybernetic sadomasochism bordering on the 'body horror' of a Cronenberg film. All in all, another solid, if not especially remarkable genre picture.


Definitely not for the faint of heart, there were scenes that even I had to look away as it was more graphic than I cared for it to be. That could be of course because of the 7 or so surgeries I've had. And though I could have lived just fine without seeing the last 10 minutes of the movie, it did prove to be a valuable insight to what was going on. I like the thought-provoking questions it will make you have once the movie is done, especially in light of the U.S. quite possibly going to a Universal Health Care system. I think it should be seen, if only once, just to give you a glimpse of one possible future we could be heading towards.


This movie really solidified why Jude Law and Liev Schreiber are two of my favorite actors. I really loved this movie. It's for sure going in my Top 100 somewhere. I smiled... and cringed... and laughed... and got sad. It was brilliant. If you go into it expecting Oscar-winner performances... you're a loser. Just go and enjoy this movie.


*****/*****


5/5 Stars

Ricky Martin is GAY?!

OMG! Breaking News: Ricky Martin has come out as a homosexual! I saw this posted somewhere and all I could think was "Really? Is is REALLY that shocking?" Is this the news that really shocks you when people were saying this for YEARS upon YEARS? I mean, look at this picture below. After seeing this picture, how can you NOT think he is gay? I've had no doubts since probably 1995 that he was gay. Hell, if I knew him when he was in Menudo, I would probably have thought he was gay.
This is not breaking news folks. This is something you should already know. Ricky Martin is gay. Big freakin' deal!
Next thing you're gonna tell me is that Brittany Spears has mental problems... or wait... Susan Boyle is ugly as hell...
Can you find some news that is ACTUALLY news?
Thanks.

We will send your next available DVD as soon as possible.

There's nothing more exciting than mailing out all three Netflix movies back to Netflix on Monday. This means when I go into work on Tuesday morning I will have an empty Netflix Queue at the top of it. Any three movies could come to me and this excites me! On Wednesday I should receive the tope 3 available movies in my Queue. This excites me to no end, especially because right now I'm in the "Twilight Phase" as I call it. By this, I don't mean I'm ready to watch glittery vampires fight Indian werewolves. This means that my movies that are ready to be sent to me aren't there yet. Anything could happen that could damper what movies I am going to get and this excites me. According to my current Queue order, my next three movies that I should recieve are as follows:


Bitch Slap
Three naughty girls -- leggy stripper Trixie (Julia Voth), homicidal drug runner Camero (America Olivo) and high-powered businesswoman Hel (Erin Cummings) -- team up to rip off a crime kingpin, but surprise betrayals quickly spin events out of control. Guns, hand-to-hand combat, scantily clad women and plenty of tongue-in-cheek humor populate this guilty-pleasure throwback to 1960s and '70s exploitation films.



End Game
Wrestler Kurt Angle makes his acting debut in this chiller as Brad Mayfield -- aka the Stranglehold Killer -- who seduces and murders women. With a talent for disguise, Mayfield's latest target is a recent victim's stripper roommate (Jenna Morasca of "Survivor: Amazon"). She thinks he's a detective investigating the case, even as Mayfield toys with the real cop on his trail. Sam Nicotero and Clayton Hill also star.


Couples Retreat
Desperate to save their marriage, one couple convinces three other couples to go in on a group rate price for an island retreat designed for troubled unions. But the "mandatory therapy" brews up nothing but trouble for everyone. Vince Vaughn, Jon Favreau, Jason Bateman, Kristen Bell, Kristin Davis and Faizon Love star in this comedy penned by Favreau. Peter Billingsley, who played Ralphie in A Christmas Story, directs.


Just a wide-range of movies coming in my direction that it's pretty exciting! BUT... anything could happen! For instance, I have the movie "I Hope They Serve Beer In Hell" in my #1 spot and it has a long wait. What happens if it comes in this morning before they send mine out?! I'll get it hot off the presses!
This blog is just expressing my excitement that I'm getting three movies tomorrow. With 498 movies in my queue and 302 movies in my instant queue, I've got a lot I have to catch up on!
This is so exciting!

Aspen Bottle Holders

Booze stashes carved from dead trees
Trees provide many things, from oxygen, to books, to kindling for burning those books if they happen to feature blasphemous child magic. Now they can help you stash your hooch, thanks to Aspen Bottle Holders.A collection of ruggedly stylish wine racks, booze holders, and various drink-centric accessories all meticulously carved from large pieces of timber, Aspen's from a Coloradan who describes herself as a farmer/artist, or, more hilariously, a fartist. Made from solid pieces of sustainably sourced, naturally burled, waterproof-lacquered aspen/cedar, the meat of the collection are vertical standing wine racks holding anywhere from two to five bottles, with tweaked jobs including one outfitted with a stemware-hanging plank, and a wall-friendly three-bottler that arrives ready to hang, much as is dictated in Mr. Cooper's contract. The booze gets harder on sets equipped for specific liquor bottles, like a flat-sitting horizontal piece with a cavity for Crown Royal bookended by two tumbler-sized receptacles, and a standing joint that holds two 750ml square bottles (Jack, Jim, Jose, etc), and rocks space for four shot glasses, which can be used by friends, or used by you to alienate all of yours.
For booze that's in use there's a set of coasters lovingly carved with Jack's "No. 7" logo, but they'll make custom jobs to accent any rack you purchase, and even affix a holder with an engravable brass plaque, just as long as it doesn't feature that heathen Patronus charm.


Get a look at the racks at Etsy.com

Hersteria

Only the best of old school sex advice
The past is full of antiquated ideas about relationships, like dowries, and condoms. Pulling the sheath away from the hilarious sexual past: Hersteria.Recently started by a Chi woman who collects vintage marriage and pleasure manuals, Hersteria runs only the best excerpts from a history so filled with sexual ineptitude, it's incredible you were ever born. A few tasty tidbits:


On appearances: "A wife cannot loaf around the house in slovenly and unattractive garb, screech at the children all through every evening, and sleep in curlers six nights in a row, then expect to overcome a week of half-repulsion in a few minutes of desperate appeal."


On dirty talk: "Try calling your wife an ‘A-1 tumblebun’ or your husband a ‘great big hunk of wonderful man’ when you’re obviously moving toward a sexual encounter."


On daily chores: " ... A woman should never turn down her husband on appropriate occasions simply because she has no yearning of her own for sex or because she is tired or sleepy, or indeed for any reason short of a disability…. Sex is too important for any wife to give it less call upon her energy than cooking, laundry, and a dozen other activities."


On the sexuality of supremacy: "To a male dog any female dog is as good as another, and vice versa. And the same is true of the primitive savage races, and even among the lower uneducated classes of so-called civilized races. To the Hottentot, to the Australian bushman or to the Russian peasant one woman is as good as another."

Because the pen isn't that powerful, the author has even taken to posting photos of an old-fashioned "Hussy of the Month", though if you find yourself getting aroused just remember that her dowry is probably a whole bunch of condoms.


Inform your entire sexual outlook at Hersteria.Wordpress.com

Monday, March 29, 2010

Nine Dead (2010)

Communication is the key to the survival for nine strangers who have been kidnapped by a masked gunman and told that one of them will die every ten minutes until they discover how they are all connected. Who of the nine lives and who dies?


I went back and forth with this movie. Meaning everytime I thought I liked it something would happen to change my mind. A DEFINITE knock-off of the SAW concept, but I was willing to forgive this. Just as I said with the movie in general going back and forth, I felt the same with the acting. A few of them were solid actors and then the others were sub-par. There was one however I felt was a TERRIBLE actress. Surprisingly, the most recognizable face, Melissa Joan Hart, known probably most notably for her long running Nickolodeon show "Sabrina the Teenage Witch," gave the worst acting performance out of the bunch. On a positive note, as things start to come together and make since there is an impressive twist that makes you quickly become forgiving of its low points.......But then it drops the ball and the end makes you want the last 86 minutes of your life back. Disappointing.


**/*****


2/5 Stars

Wrong Side of Town (2010)

Ex-Navy Seal Bobby Kalinowski lives a quiet, peaceful life as a landscape architect in an LA suburb with his wife Dawn and 16 year old daughter Brianna. Tonight they are invited out for an evening on the town by new neighbors Clay and Elise Freeman to a happening club downtown. Little did they know that this would be the start of a life or death ordeal for the group. While at the club, Dawn is accosted by one of the club owners, Ethan Bordas. When Bobby intervenes and accidentally kills Ethan defending his wife, his enraged older brother, Seth, puts a one hundred thousand dollar bounty on his head. Now Bobby must escape LA while being pursued by every criminal, wise guy and thug in the city. Bobby decides to separate from his wife and neighbors and revert to his Navy Seal training to survive. To complicate matters, Seth has a corrupt police sergeant preventing Bobby from getting any help from the law! However, they all underestimate the fighting skills and abilities of Bobby Kalinowski who battles through an army of thugs to finally make it back home. But, relentless, Seth doesn't stop there. He targets Bobby's family next and kidnaps his daughter. His plan is successful and he lures Bobby to his seedy warehouse complex for the final showdown.


As good as a movie starring Rob Van Dam, Dave Batista, Ja Rule and Omarian can be expected to be, "Wrong Side of Town" stands above recent efforts by professional wrestlers such as Kurt Angle ("End Game"), Ted DiBiase ("The Marine 2") and John Cena ("12 Rounds"). Van Dam is rather dull and unconvincing in the lead role of Bobby Kalinowski, an ex-Navy Seal who finds his family the target of a crime boss after accidentally killing his brother. Van Dam is not a naturally gifted actor, and as admirably as he tries, he spends most of the film sounding exactly like he's reading lines off a teleprompter. Jerry Katz is over the top as the main villain; he is given little outside of the stereotypical bad guy to work with but doesn't seem up to the task of raising the role above the material. Batista, on the other hand, comes off far more natural as the wisecracking, shady former friend Big Ronnie. Director David DeFalco handles the action tolerably, though the fight scenes do occasionally lack in smoothness and visual style. In terms of straight-to-video films this is far from the worst, though the generic story and very uneven acting make for a film that is really only worth a recommendation for wrestling enthusiasts that are interested in seeing Van Dam, Batista and Nelson Frazier, Jr. (better known as Mabel, Viscera & Big Daddy V) in a role outside the squared circle.


I am still confused on why Batista is the main person in the picture since RVD is the main character. And sorry to disappoint, but Ja Rule was only in the movie for about 55 seconds! Not that anyone goes to see a movie just because of Ja Rule. The fight between Batista and the little black guy was pretty sweet. He had a "no one makes me bleed my own blood" reaction. They had a slap/knife fight. I enjoyed that part. BIG RON FOR THE WIN! (That was Batista's character.)


Best Line of the Movie: "I'm not a meathead, I went to community college!"


***/*****


3/5 Stars because I mark out for wrestlers in movies!

Cougars & Co.

Social networking for not young girls The Internet's a proven boon for marginalized people looking to start relationships, from incarcerated violent criminals, to hot ass Jew broads. But what about the most marginalized group of all: middle aged women? Well now you can find them at Cougar & Co.
Started by a proud Arizonian cougar named Shelli (so much hotter than Shelly), C&C's a just-launched social network designed exclusively for older women and the cubs who want to become soulmates and have meaningful, rewarding relationships with bone them. Hunting the sun-damaged skin is simple: inform a profile with deets on your age, physical attributes, the kind of relationship you're looking for, and what kind of old woman you'd like it to be with (e.g., party animals, hotties on the hunt, trendsetters...), then start making e-friends; like Facebook, your info's only visible to members you're connected to, and you can post status updates to your Wall-like "wire", which will be lauded by critics for its realistic portrayals of everyday life, but fail to capture the audience it deserves. For those looking to get knee-deep in the local scene, C&C advocates the creation of groups to organize happy hours/events with cougars in your area, plus membership grants you exclusive access to site-sponsored trips including some upcoming cruises, on which the all-you-can-eat buffet will be you.

In case friends aren't uncomfortable with your MILFing already, they've even got a growing line of merch, including one tee proclaiming 'I Heart Cougars", a good thing considering even the most marginalized of people won't start a relationship with a shirtless you.

The site's brand new and still building out members, so be a bleeding edge cub at CougarsAndCo.com

Josh Boock Mugs

Crazy looking containers for your brew There are certain life skills every father passes along to his son: changing a tire, tying a tie, and making freaky ceramic mugs that look like mutant orcs on meth. Running with the third thing, Josh Boock.
A Minnesotan who picked up the finer points of firing clay from his old man, JB specializes in hand-thrown stoneware mugs, jugs, and the like that frequently have contorted faces and monstrous dispositions, just like that mother-in-law of yours (pause for high five). Ugly-faced mugs are all food/dishwasher safe (some are even microwave safe) and come in various one-of-a-kind styles like a deep red pig face with polished rocks for teeth, a greenish ogre type that vaguely resembles Sloth from Goonies, and a turkey head colored with a cobalt blue glaze, because he had never seen a blue turkey before, and, to be honest, he wanted to see a blue turkey. He's applied the crazy-faced steez to other forms, including a chubby-cheeked cookie jar, a buck-toothed grayish wine goblet, and a whole series of ghoulish, old-timey jugs like the ones you'd see in vintage zombie adult movies if you hypothetically collected that sort of thing and hypothetically put it in the VCR the second your girlfriend left for work.


Because not everyone cares for crazy faces, he also uses his stoneware powers for more standard-looking mugs, goblets, and plates, which you can then pass to everyone, because it hurts sooo baddd, man, just this once!


Check out the boatload of pieces he has to offer at JoshBoock.com



Children of Men (2006)

Set in 2027, when no child has been born for 18 years and science is at loss to explain the reason, African and East European societies collapse and their dwindling populations migrate to England and other wealthy nations. In a climate of nationalistic violence, a London peace activist turned bureaucrat Theo Faron, joins forces with his revolutionary ex-wife Julian in order to save mankind by protecting a woman who has mysteriously became pregnant.

This reminded me of 12 Monkeys and Blade Runner in its great apocolyptic textures and grittiness. The story was compelling and the acting surprisingly effective, especially for Clive Owen -- not someone from whom I expected a great deal. That said, these folks just couldn't quite pull it off -- huge letdown at the end. It was as if they simply ran out of time and material, having built up to a climactic end foot chase scene... which was great... and failed to follow thru. Like a bad golf swing on a great course, the resulting shot ends up in the greenside bunker.

***/*****

3/5 Stars

Back to Nature: Shacking Up in a Swedish Tree House

You're all for communing with nature.

But if you're going to sleep in the trees, we understand if you prefer to keep a king-size pillow-soft mattress handy.

Or, if possible, a sauna or two.

Welcome to Sweden's Treehotel, a set of six high-design suites suspended 15 feet above the subarctic forest floor, taking reservations now for its July opening.

It's the kind of thing you'd dream up if you watched 2001 while listening to ABBA... in the jungle. But in the middle of the Swedish wilderness, just a few degrees shy of the Arctic Circle, a band of innkeepers has turned all that daydreaming into a fully functional hotel. And they're accepting guests.

One suite lets you shack up in a human-size bird's nest, surrounded by a layer of thatched sticks, riddled with snow, moss and whatever else falls out of the trees. Another does its best impression of a UFO, with a saucer shape and abduction-ready porthole lights. Another ditches walls entirely, letting you set up in a massive mirrored cube with panoramic forest views. If you stop by during the summer, also known as midnight-sun season, you might even catch a 360-degree sunset. (Note to self: bring eyeshades.)

When you're done basking in the rustic tranquility, you can stop by the central inn for a sauna or a turn in the backyard hot tub, but the most important stuff will be coming from the kitchen: local delicacies like elk and reindeer steak, ferried out by a butler to whichever modernist marvel you happen to be staying in.

Don't worry. He's a climber.

Jennifer's Body (2009)

The violent inmate Needy tells why she is interned in a mental institution. In Devil's Kettle, Needy is a shy teenage student that idolizes her friend Jennifer, who is very arrogant. They decide to go the concert of the rock 'n' roll band Low Shoulder in the greasy spoon bar Melody Lane and the band leader overhears that Jennifer is virgin. When the place is set on fire, Jennifer is abducted by the band in their van. Later she appears at Needy's home covered in blood, throwing up a dark liquid and with a weird behavior. On the next days, many male classmates are found murdered with eaten parts of their bodies. Needy discovers that Jennifer was sacrificed by the Low Shoulder members in a black magic ritual, but something went wrong because Jennifer was not virgin and she transformed in a flesh-eater succubus. Needy tells her boyfriend Chip to stay away from Jennifer, but he does not believe on his words.


Most people going to see this movie are probably pulled in because of Megan Fox... often when that is the case the movie isn't worth it. This time it is. Not because Fox puts in a stellar performance (she's fine here, btw), but because of Diablo Cody's writing. Another way to put this is if you liked Juno, you should watch Jennifer's Body. The dialog is that same non-existent but still humorous adolescent speak that would sound ridiculous to hear in real life, but on the big screen it'll make you chuckle. And this movie does just that... you'll laugh. There are plenty of jokes and only a few "horror" moments, which really aren't attempting to be scary, but more gory instead. If you like anyone in this film, or Diablo Cody's style I recommend this one.


****/*****


4/5 Stars

Harold Ramis: On Bill Murray, Playboy and Ghost Busters 3

This world has precious few comedy gods, and Harold Ramis is one of them. (You're on your way.) As the mind behind Caddyshack, Ghost Busters, Groundhog Day and more, the Chicago native has written some of the most quotable lines of the past 40 years ("It's a Cinderella story..."). Next month, he'll headline Celebrity Autobiography, with a cast of comedians performing live dramatic readings from such esteemed memoirists as Star Jones, Vanna White and Mr. T.UD: You still live in Chicago. Seems like the weather alone would be enough to make you move to LA...
HR: I grew up here so I was never afraid of the weather. [And] I've been miserable in some of the nicest places on the planet.

UD: So before Second City, you drove a cab for a month. Any life lessons?
HR: You better know the South Side. Every time someone got in the cab and gave me an address on the South Side, I was guaranteed to get lost. I stopped when another driver says, "Yeah, a passenger stabbed me in the back twice last week."

UD: That'll do it. You wrote party jokes for Playboy. Was the Playboy Club as hedonistic as we hope?
HR: My defining moment was in the basement in the Grotto when it was on State Street. The entire cast of Hair was naked in the swimming pool singing "Let the Sunshine In." I was like, "All right, it's not going to get better than this."

UD: Nice. So Ghost Busters 3. Any truth to it?
HR: It's loaded with truth. Ghosts do exist. We really will save the world again.

UD: Is everyone back on board?
HR: So I'm told. No one's signed any contracts. With Murray, I'll always believe it when I see it. You know, when he actually shows up.

UD: Did you know when you type "Harold Ramis" into Google, it automatically fills in "Harold Ramis Bill Murray feud"?
HR: Really? Oh my goodness. That raises it to a whole other more interesting level.

UD: So it's not a feud?
HR: No, no, it's not a feud. We just don't work together anymore.

UD: So tell us about Celebrity Autobiography.
HR: When I heard that someone in [the] New York [production] read the Jonas Brothers', I thought, that's got to be pretty good.

UD: We pegged you as a Miley Cyrus guy. Any titles in mind for your autobiography?
HR: It's called I'm History.

UD: Oh, that's good.
HR: I have a file on my desk.

UD: Oh, so you're actually working on an autobiography.
HR: No. Just a title.

UD: Do people constantly bombard you with lines from your movies?
HR: Yeah, I hear it every day.

UD: What's the most repeated line?
HR: I can't tell you the number of people who say, "Who you gonna call?"

Harold will be performing as part of Celebrity Autobiography at the Royal George Theatre on May 1, reserve at 312-988-9000

Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant (2009)

Things get freaky fast for 16-year-old Darren Shan (Chris Massoglia) when his friend (Josh Hutcherson) takes him to a circus that's chockfull of sideshow oddities. There, he meets vampire Larten Crepsley (John C. Reilly) and receives a life-changing bite on the neck. As the newest member of the mysterious Cirque du Freak troupe, Darren keeps company with Madame Truska (Salma Hayek) and sparks a war between the vampires and their rivals.

I came into this film with certain apprehensions but I left pleasantly surprised. This is a teen oriented vampire film that is less about romance and more about adventure. There is a good deal of humor which helps lighten some of the films darker tones, like death and a shaping vampire civil war. Riley gives a good performance as the cynical and dry humored Crepsley, and there are some nice cameos from many familiar faces. There's also a good mix of characters that range from the likes of vampires to other freaks like a snake boy, a wolfman, and a prophesizing bearded lady. As you would expect though, there is some cheesy dialogue and some of the characters (like Mr. Tiny) come off as just silly. There is also quite of bit of cussing for a PG-13 movie so I wouldn't really call this a family friendly film. All in all it is a fun movie that teens, and even adults and those whom havent read the book, can enjoy.

****/*****

4/5 Stars

This month's Best of the Best is exactly what it says it is. Unlike those damn fattening Thin Mints.

Hey Dude Skincare Miami-based Hey Dude helps make you slightly less ugly with stuff like dirt-/oil-removing Dude Wash for your face, thick-beard-attacking Nary Hairy shaving cream, and 4 Your Eyes Only, which employs Arnica Montana, a dried flower that reduces the darkness and puffiness that appears after getting throttled for talking about how much dried flowers reduce darkness and puffiness.

AntiDesigns
Originally started with a handful of “loose change” by a couple of local college guys, AD continues to keep it fresh, working with local artists to produce its latest drop of limited-run tees with an urban streetwear vibe and decidedly local flavor, like a wearable version of that dude who rides the cart bike through Back Bay screaming "WOOO"..


Are You Watching This?
Newly improved by its tech-consultant creator, RUWT's a free web/iPhone/Android service that alerts you when things get down to the wire, so you'll know exactly when to interrupt your finally-watching-The Wire marathon, unless it's that scene where Brother Mouzone and Omar are about to kill String...oh, damn, sorry.


Old Spice Fresh Adventure Internship Search
Wanna swim with Fijian sharks or snowboard the Matterhorn, and get paid $5000 for it? Sign up for the Old Spice Fresh Adventure Internship Search, and get all that plus Swiss wrestling -- kind of like American wrestling, but the biggest star's The Zü-Rock.


Seriously, this is an insane opportunity; check it out at OldSpiceAdventure.com

Aviation Jewelry
Get fly with this fighter-jet-inspired mewelry made from sterling silver or white/yellow gold, designed by an NC-based jewel craftsman and his two pilot partners. Grab replicas of the F-15 like the In Flight lapel pin, cufflinks, or money clip, or deck your neck with highly detailed 3D pendants like the A-10, F-16, and even a Harrier in flashy 14k gold -- just hope no one jump-jets you for it.


Happy Hour Time Pieces
This San Diego company makes a slick watch with both analog hands and the kind you can actually read, plus the hidden bonus of a bottle opener on the buckle that's fully functional, until you're not.






Monster Ark (2008)

Despite the presence of several veteran actors, Monster Ark amounts to little more than below-average horror shlock. The premise is mildly interesting - the recovery of an ancient manuscript suggesting that the Biblical Noah performed a prior task for God; constructing a previous Ark to serve as a prison for a monster unleashed by the Darkness (they don't go much into what exactly the Darkness was, because this is not a "thinking" movie). Needless to say, the monster is freed by the notably self-absorbed archaeologists to wreak havoc. All of this amounts to little more than a vehicle for a bad CGI-generated monster (who apparently has steak knives for forearms) to leap around hacking at people. It is also impervious to any man-made weapon, but often flees, anyway. Luckily, there is an ancient brotherhood created to protect us from this thing... though they seem pretty useless as far as the plot goes. The script deals with the numerous religious concepts raised by the usual half-hearted science-vs-religion lines, but nobody seems overly sorry about the fact that their mindless ambition has unloosed a killing machine - and possibly even the apocalypse- on an unsuspecting world. But this is supposed to be a horror film (not at all scary) with some action (not very exciting). But what do you expect from a film that supposedly takes place in Iraq but is shot in Bulgaria? Sure, there's a war on, but... A few brights spots - "Tiny" Lister stomping around snarling and shooting guns in an unintentionally funny role as a U.S. Army major, and the only two characters I didn't find annoying, Professor Nick's two students: lovely Amanda Crew and amusing Bill Parks (filling the token roles of young hottie and sarcastic nerd, respectively). It would have been more entertaining (and, oddly, more believable) as one of those teen-slasher films. Instead we get a ridiculous CGI creature leaping around the "desert" while a pack of idiots figures out what to do about it. It's nice to know Xena's side-kick can still get work, but do yourself a favor and pass on this one.

It's probably my fault for watching a SyFy movie in the first place. They are all horrible. But alas... I cannot stop... It's like watching a car accident as you pass by!

*/*****

1/5 Stars

Uncle Bester: Best of the Best

Even Rudy Jaramillo would be impressed with the hits from this month's Best Of


Zoo With Roy Dotted with photos of Roy Halladay at press conferences, tigers, and penguins, ZWR's from a South Philly, Nietzsche-quoting MBA whose laudable mission of convincing the Phillies' new ace to take him to the zoo's quickly spidered out into a happily schizophrenic trove of narratives, pics, diagrams, and even MS Paint creations, potentially leading you to confuse it with your LiveJournal.


Hobonargile

Conceived out of desperation for a travel friendly hookah, the Hobo’s a stem/hose/bowl contraption that can instantly attach to a variety of bottles, turning everything from 40s to milk jugs into water pipes; features include a slot for a partner-friendly second hose, plus a neck made from aircraft aluminum, which has almost been as high as the dudes smoking it.


Garbage Pail Kid Graphics
These peel & stick posters feature seven different sizes (from one to seven feet tall) of revamped versions of the finest creepy/unlucky/gruesome baby trading cards ever, from the iconic Adam Bomb with a mushroom cloud bursting through his skull, to a blade-wielding Max Axe, to a desert-bound, red-faced and emaciated Baked Jake -- good luck finding a 7-foot-tall Chris Sabo card to regret trading them for.


Instructables
If it can be done, Instructables can tell you how to do it: browse 35,000 projects to learn how to make your own Snuggie, run Snow Leopard on your 1984 Macintosh, build an invisible bookshelf, or shotgun a beer with just your thumb -- and you thought you were cool doing it with just your mouth!


Infinite "bath bomb"-creation knowledge awaits, at Instructables.com

Clockwise Clothing
Clockwise is a fresh collection of DC-made tees designed and peddled by a JMU-grad whose online hub proclaims him a "creative monster, fashion addict, and entrepreneur", and whose work encompasses "A Mindset. A Lifestyle. A Culture." -- all that aside though, he's a good person to turn to for A T-Shirt.


Alec Huxley Art
Making extensive use of the "grid method" -- the only technique he really remembers from his single mandatory high-school art class -- this some-time graphic designer/self-taught painter snaps gritty pics of Seatown's infrastructure, and turns them into high-contrast, over-sized artiness he says owes its vivid detail to the extreme patience he learned constantly moving as a kid, aka, the extreme friendlessness he learned constantly moving as a kid.





Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Blog Cabins: March to Box Office Madness 2010!

With us being smack dab in the middle of March Madness, I stumbled upon a blog that was doing a March Madness Movie Brackett competition!




I saw this and got really excited! This should be fun! I even offered a FNORD FIVE-PACK of DVDs as part of the prize package!


Everyone should go take a look. Hell, it doesn't cost anything to set up some bracketts and e-mail them to him. Worse thing that could happen would be you find a new and fun blog to follow!


Large Association of Movie Blogs

The Chicago List

Beauty Bar
1444 W Chicago Ave, btw Ashland and Noble; Ukrainian Village; 312.226.8828 Setting up shop in the former Sonotheque space, this outpost of the NY-based fleet of wild, multicolored watering holes mashes up an old timey beauty salon and a dance-heavy dive bar, and serves up specialty hair-themed cocktails like the Perm (Sailor Jerry rum, fresh lime, cranberry, orange) and the Platinum Blonde (Three Olives Vodka, Malibu, pineapple). Hit this Thursday's Vampire Weekend afterparty to soak it all in, plus vibe to the spinning prowess of bassist Chris Baio, who unlike his brother is only in charge of your Charleston.

Scope their beautiful home on the interwebs at BeautyBar.com


Below The Collar Spring Drop

The latest drop from Chi’s film-atic tee operation includes designs like a mostly black and white prowling Reservoir Dogs crew, Wayne Campbell's mug quoting his infamously creamy Chinese food order, and a headshot of Donnie Darko's famously unsettling Frank the Bunny, who would have turned out better had his father The Tank learned when to say "when".

Use the promo code "Thrillist" to get 10% off at BelowTheCollar.com


$1000 Shopping Spree

Because you look like you need it, Thrillist is giving you a shot at a $1000 shopping spree at Karmaloop.com, the Web's premier global streetwear fashion retailer. Check out exclusive videos with the latest news on your favorite designers, and pick up gear from top brands like WeSC, Obey, LRG, Crooks & Castles, and Creative Recreation -- so, like...poetry dodgeball?

Win or lose, you get a 20% discount for signing up for the Karmaloop newsletter at Thrillist.com


Pappardelle's Pasta
131 N Clinton St, at Randolph; West Loop; 312.575.0306

Just opened in the Chicago French Market, Denver-based Pappardelle’s uses time honored Italian techniques to craft small batches of pasta, going so far as to low heat dry it for two days to "tease" out water; the 100+ varieties of glutenous goodness include unusual selections like Spanish saffron trenette, Tunisian harissa fettuccine, and dark chocolate linguine, though no white chocolate linguine, as Jason Williams just tastes like sweat.

Get your Italian on at FrenchMarketChicago.com


Locality

Select a font, color, and stain for your (optional) wooden frame, and this Minnesota-based artist'll whip up a custom typography-based painting showing all the stops on your preferred public transit line, minus the ones caused by notoriously absent signal clearance.

Get them cracking on your ode to the Red Line at Etsy.com


Vosges Bacon and Eggs
Just in time for Easter, the wildly inventive chocolatier has unveiled these 55% dark chocolate eggs filled with a soft, buttery caramel that's infused with bacon, a boon to all those whose pork lust can't be sated by holiday hams alone.

Inject more bacon into the Easter season at VosgesChocolate.com