Demotivational Poster of the Day

Demotivational Poster of the Day

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Golden Ghouls: Old Time Horror Still Thrills!


Discover one of the best horror anthologies of all time. Hosted by Frankenstein.
These days, the best TV shows depend on fancy bells and whistles like "recurring characters" and "continuing storylines" and "sets". Pansies.


Those were all unnecessary back in the late-50s and early 60s, which saw a golden age of anthologized sci-fi and horror shows. Each episode gave you a stand-alone story utterly unrelated to what aired the week before. The era spawned such legendary shows as The Twilight Zone, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, The Outer Limits and the cult favorite Thriller.


And now Thriller, which Stephen King once dubbed "the best horror series ever put on TV," is making its first ever appearance on DVD. Hosted by monster movie icon Boris "Frankenstein" Karloff, Thriller aired on NBC from 1960 to 1962 and presented weekly tales of suspense, murder and general scare-mongering. In addition to hosting, Karloff himself starred in five of the 67 episodes, while other tales featured the likes of William Shatner, Richard Chamberlain, Mary Tyler Moore, Leslie Nielsen, Ursula Andress and the actor whose name alone pre-qualified him for a horror role, Rip Torn.


The epic 14-disc Thriller: The Complete Series box set collects all those episodes, plus 24 hours of audio commentary. Pick it up to witness the scariest thing with Boris Karloff in it that's not his coffin.

Carlos in Charge

Would-Be Ace Finally Lives up to Billing

Ahhh, so this is the Carlos Zambrano the Cubs signed to a $800 bazillion dollar contract. Zambrano struck out seven last night, allowed three hits, and even hit a two-run homer in the 14-2 win. Are we sure we want to trade him? After all, he's 3-0 with a 1.84 ERA since returning to the rotation. Then there was the offense, which was led by Aramis Ramirez's four RBIs (too bad this isn't May, eh Aramis?). Indeed, everyone got in on the act — only two Cubs, both pitchers, didn't get a hit.

Clash of the Titans 2010 PG-13 106 minutes

If he is to save the life of the beautiful Princess Andromeda (Alexa Davalos), the valiant Perseus (Sam Worthington) -- born to a god but raised as a man -- must lead a team of intrepid warriors on a quest to battle a host of powerful, beastly enemies. This sweeping fantasy epic, a remake of the 1981 hit, also stars Liam Neeson as Zeus, Ralph Fiennes as Hades, Danny Huston as Poseidon and Gemma Arterton as Io.
Overall a fun movie, although the reviews here made me weary, I couldn't see what all the fuss was about. If the story was the same as the earlier version people would say "no imagination!". Now that this version is a little different people are still complaining. I guess you can't please everyone. What in the world are people talking about as far as the acting goes? This isn't a Shakespearean play, it's a fantasy movie based on mythology. Lightenup! I would buy the DVD, I enjoyed it.

Today's directors commonly fail to pay attention to important small details. First, Perseus' character's "hair style" was much too modern and did not fit the Greek times. It looked too much like a hairstyle of a college football player of today. And lastly, Andromeda did not have the voice of a young feminine princess of mythological times. Her voice sounded like a modern, strong minded feminist woman of today. Both features were more realistic in 1981 version. These are small details that make a big difference in making an authentic looking movie. Other than those mistakes, I really enjoyed to movie.


****/*****

4/5 Stars

Rabbit Redux

If Hef Opened a New Art Gallery...

You’ve long considered the Playboy Bunny a work of art.

So it’s nice to see that, at long last, someone finally agrees with you.

Introducing Playboy Redux, an art exhibit taking that 50-year-old Chicago-born icon into strange and interesting new directions. Artistically speaking, that is.

Now, we know what you’re thinking: why mess with perfection? Tell you the truth, we don’t know, but after seeing the results, we think you’ll be okay with it.

The show comes via the Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh and is officially sanctioned by the Playboy folks, so your cotton-tailed beauties are in safe hands. In this case, those hands actually belong to an assortment of 35 contemporary artists, each of whom has interpreted the Bunny through his or her particular lens... including at least one Polaroid lens. (Don’t worry—it’s tasteful. But not, you know, too tasteful.)

You’ll be happy to know the work is for sale, so you can finally cover that one bare wall you’ve got left in your apartment—because you’ve probably been waiting for just the right acrylic-on-watercolor paper of a flame-haired cocktail waitress depositing a key down her bosom in a work entitled Oops!

Such subject matter is too important for oil paints.

Playboy Redux, through September 12 at Rotofugi Gallery, 773-868-3308

Monday, August 30, 2010

Thrill Killbook

Bag This Bounty Hunter Before He's A Blockbuster
Last Man Standing: Killbook of a Bounty Hunter

It’s the tale of Gabriel, last of a genetically engineered breed of soldiers. Framed up A-Team style and thrown in a nine-level prison, he must figure out the whos and whys before he dies.

And then there are the mutant shark people. Sexy robots. An undead cyborg Judge (see picture above). And some kind of giant bunny with a samurai sword. The real question is: how does a book like this not get buzz? Launched at Comic-Con, the Killbook quickly sold out and now even bigger things are in store. "A week or so ago," says creator Dan, "LMS was picked up by Paramount Pictures. My producer Scott Aversano and I have been working on the story, making sure we can bring something unique and deep to the movie. A lot of fans believe the story is only Gabriel going after the people who set him up. But there's a lot more to it. That's just the simple synopsis. What really happens once Gabriel goes on that journey spins the entire story upside down."

Death at a Funeral (2010)

Aaron's father's funeral is today at the family home, and everything goes wrong: the funeral home delivers the wrong body; a cousin gives her fiancé a Valium from her brother's apartment, not knowing her brother is dealing drugs - it's LSD and the fiancé arrives at the funeral wildly stoned; Aaron's younger brother, Ryan, a successful writer, flies in from New York broke but arrogant; one uncle is angry over his daughter's choice of boyfriends, and the other is cranky and coarse. Add an ovulating wife, a jealous ex-boyfriend, and a short stranger who wants a word with Aaron - what could he want? Would another death solve Aaron's problems? And what about the eulogy?
This cast gets some laughs out of a terrible, lame, vulgar script, which is more than can be said for the original; but a special place should be reserved in infamy for keeping the excrement gag.


To begin with, I have not seen the original film from which this one is based on. I have heard nothing but good things about it though. So when I heard that Hollywood was remaking it with a cast that includes Chris Rock, Martin Lawrence, Tracy Morgan, Zoe Saldana, Regina Hall (whom I absolutely LOVE) and James Marsden, I had high hopes because it was also being directed by Neil LaBute ("In the Company of Men" and "Nurse Betty"). Well those hopes were dashed within the first few minutes of this movie because I thought this was a terrible waste of talent. I counted the number of times that I laughed and that number totaled 2 times! That's it! As for the story, Mr. Rock plays Aaron, the eldest son of a family whose patriarch passes away. Soon, members of the family, including his brother (Mr. Lawrence), make their way to Aaron's house for the wake. Then a mysterious stranger (Peter Dinklage) shows up and has a shocking secret about their father. The main draw for me with this movie was the cast and they are sorely let down by the whole thing. The script wasn't funny, the directing was lackluster at best and the whole thing just felt too forced. The only bright spot was Mr. Marsden (hence the 2-star rating I have given this). I'm glad I did not see this in theaters because I would've been really mad had I spent $12 on this. As it stands, I only wasted 92 minutes of my life that I will never get back.


**/*****

2/5 Stars

Autumn (2009/I)

Billions are dead and the few that are left start to realize they are not alone. Initially when the dead begin to rise, they are not very threatening. However, in a short period of time, the lurching bodies begin to get their most basic senses back and this makes them much more dangerous. When the dead become attracted to light and sound, the survivors have no option but to live in silent darkness.

There are tons of low budget zombie flicks out there to choose from. If you are determined to watch such a movie, may i suggest you consider one other than this. As a book, this story may work, but this presentation was far too weak in every way. Acting is terribly poor, with a few exceptions and the sound and camera work are annoyingly amateurish (and distracting). All the characters are disposable, the 'gore' factor leaves much to be desired. In all, I found myself struggling not to fast forward through the majority of what i found to be incredibly contrived and boring set ups.

*/*****

1/5 Stars

What If We Give It Away?

Cubs Do Their Usual Collapse, Lose 7-5

The Cubs got a semi-respectable start from rookie Casey Coleman, and even rallied from a 5-3 deficit to tie the game in the eighth on Kosuke Fukudome's two-run homer (his second in two days!). Alas, the Reds scored twice in the bottom of the inning on some Keystone Kops-caliber defense, including Fukudome's first error of the season — with an assist from Aramis "Why Block the Ball with My Body?" Ramirez. The fundamentally sound Cubs of last week disappeared, and the bumbling Cubs we know all too well tallied yet another loss.

After.Life (2009)

After a horrific car accident, Anna (Ricci) wakes up to find the local funeral director Eliot Deacon (Neeson) preparing her body for her funeral. Confused, terrified and feeling still very much alive, Anna doesn't believe she's dead, despite the funeral director's reassurances that she is merely in transition to the afterlife. Eliot convinces her he has the ability to communicate with the dead and is the only one who can help her. Trapped inside the funeral home, with nobody to turn to except Eliot, Anna is forced to face her deepest fears and accept her own death. But Anna's grief-stricken boyfriend Paul (Long) still can't shake the nagging suspicion that Eliot isn't what he appears to be. As the funeral nears, Paul gets closer to unlocking the disturbing truth, but it could be too late; Anna may have already begun to cross over the other side.
I liked this one. Very suspensful all the way to the end, cuz it just keeps you guessing. A few subtle clues are stuck in there to kinda gives things away, but you gotta pay attention and watch out for them. Good performances by Neeson, Ricci and Long. Male fans of Miss Ricci (and maybe some women), will be pleasantly surprised to see that little Wednesday Addams is nekkid through a very large majority of this film. That must have been a challenge for her as an actress. I think she pulled her role off very well. I especially like the creepy scene of the bobblehead turning it's head on it's own!

This was a very good movie. It is extremely confusing if you do not pay close attention to the movie. And sometimes even those clues can contradict themselves but you still have to put A and B together. Definitely worth owning and definitely worth watching as long as you take it for what it is and actually enjoy these kinds of movies.


****/*****

4/5 Stars

Monday, August 16, 2010

The Book of Eli (2010)

Determined to salvage a sacred text in order to protect humanity, Eli (Denzel Washington) goes on a quest across the country in this action-packed sci-fi adventure. Meanwhile, a blind woman named Claudia (Jennifer Beals) tries to protect her daughter, Solara (Mila Kunis). It seems that tyrannical town bully Carnegie (Gary Oldman) has taken a shine to the girl. Directed by the Hughes brothers, the film co-stars Ray Stevenson.
The ending I feel will leave the audience satisfied. The story has a deeper meaning than most people are willing to see. The action is just right, Denzel is at the top of his game. All in all, its a film you may have to watch for the second time to get the jest of the story. Nice job from the Hughes Brothers

I liked the dramatic imagery and music that set the mood for most of the film. Also, the first fight scene particularly, which shows dueling shadows was an original way of portraying an action sequence (I haven't seen many shot like that and I give the makers kudos). Gary Oldman is great in playing his rough, dirty and crazy self. Meg is hot when she's trashed out. Regarding religion, it's paralleled with how Legion is the evangelical's wet dream. The Book of Eli is kind of like that for Southern Baptists. I thought it was a cool movie, especially if you like end of the world stories, but you know it's a bad mofo against the world. He's probably an old testament fan from how he simultaneously hugs and shanks the first guy.


****/*****

4/5 Stars

The Expendables (2010)

Barney (Sylvester Stallone) leads a ragtag band of hired guns charged with overthrowing a South American despot, a job no official military unit is willing to touch. But once on the ground, the team learns there's more to the mission than they were told. Their next move determines whether they survive -- or are, indeed, expendable. Jason Statham, Mickey Rourke, Dolph Lundgren and Jet Li round out a stellar cast.

"The Expendables" is a modern-day throwback to the action movies of the 80's and 90's. Action star Sylvester Stallone pulls triple duty as writer, director, and lead star, and does it well. Stallone plays Barney Ross, a hardened war veteran and leader of a group of mercenaries known as The Expendables, consisting of Lee Christmas (Jason Statham), the second in command and knives expert; Yin Yang (Jet Li), a martial arts expert; Toll Road (Randy Couture), the team's hand to hand combatant; Hale Caesar (Terry Crews), the team's weapons and demolitions expert; and Dolph Lundgren, a sniper that often gets in fights with Yin Yang. When a rouge CIA agent (Eric Roberts) and his bodyguard, Paine (Steve Austin), team up with South American dictator Garza (David Zayas), The Expendables go out on a mission to kill them-- in the most brutal and entertaining way possible. All the actors are good here, with Statham being the scene stealer. The script is decent, and while it isn't strong, the jokes are good and the film rarely runs dry. However, it should be noted that Jet Li, while marketed as a main star, takes more of a back seat to Stallone, Statham, and Roberts, and isn't in the movie as much as you think. Steve Austin doesn't really do anything but stand around until the end of the movie, and Gisele Itie's character is so bland that she could have been cut from the entire script without much change. Mickey Rourke pops up in a few scenes as a retired Expendable, and Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger make small cameos in a slightly forced but cool scene, which ends with a great joke at Arnold's expense. In the end, it's a fun flick that is worth the money.
This is one flick that has one target audience and if you are in that audience then you should really enjoy. If you are into non-stop action that never gives you a chance to come up for air then this is the movie for you. This is not a date night movie. This is a flick to watch with your friends, the more people you watch it with, the more fun you will have. Terry Crews' shotgun and Dolph Lundgren's dry sarcastic method acting steal the show. Sly proves he is still Sly at 63 years young. Statham is Statham and if you are a fan of his you will enjoy. Can't say too much about the plot because all I remember is the action that includes some pretty decent fights and some really nice gun play. Recommended for fans of action, and for those who want to have fun while watching a film without having to think too much.


****/*****

4/5 Stars

Monday, August 9, 2010

Seventh Moon (2008)

Blair Witch co-creator Eduardo Sanchez continues to strip away his characters' sense of ease and confidence in his third film, which captures the horrors that befall a pair of newlyweds honeymooning in China. Melissa (Amy Smart) and Yul (Tim Chiou) are enjoying the Hungry Ghost Festival immensely, but their hosts think they're enjoying it too much. Soon, the couple is abandoned in the middle of nowhere -- but they're far from being alone.
The story is interesting enough that this film could have been much better. Instead the lead characters lacked common sense and the villagers weren’t believable. The shaky camera ruined the creepy, isolated atmosphere and the ending is underwhelming. In the end, this film is more annoying than entertaining. I was looking for a zombie-type of film... and was very mislead. I should've known since it starred Amy Smart... some Asian people... and the "Puddies" from Power Rangers!
I wanted to give this three stars for the story itself, but so many other things ruined this film for me. First off...TOO DARK!! What is the matter with these filmmakers? I don't think it's fair that I have to either turn up the brightness on my t.v. set, or invest in a pair of night vision goggles every time I wanna watch a film that has potential, but not enough freakin' light! I like Amy Smart in her other films, but I had to skip over alot of this movie, cuz the other annoying thing was the shaky camera. I felt like I was watching 'The Blair Witch Project' all over again, only DARKER!! Geez, what a disappointment next to the other 'Ghost House Underground' films that were waaaay better. Skip this one, and check out 'The Thaw', 'Offspring', and especially 'The Children' instead!


**/*****

2/5 Stars

The Road (2009)

In a post-apocalyptic world in a near future, a man and his young son wander heading to South seeking good people through destroyed roads. Along their journey, they hide themselves from cannibal survivors and seek supplies in the debris of houses and stores. They have one revolver with two shells for self-protection or for an ultimate decision of committing suicide. The man recalls the good moments of his life with his wife and begins to lose his humanity while his son pushes him to help and old man and a thief. When they reach the beach, the boy has to decide his fate.
THE ROAD is a mostly quiet, ever somber and extremely bleak journey of 2 people struggling to survive in a world gone awry. (Much of this looks like it was shot in PA. In fact, one of the end sequences was shot in my neck of the woods at Conneaut Lake Park. You'll see a large, broken sign.) There's no sun, no vegetation, and essentially no food. One thing there's plenty of is cannibalism but that's mostly hinted at rather than shown. There are several "GOTCHA" moments that will make your heart race, but THE ROAD is more about the will to survive and what being human means rather than trying to gross you out or to scare you. I think many people looking for a horror film or thriller will stagger out of the theater like those scavenging for food in the movie but for the rest of us there is plenty to gnaw on. BOTTOM LINE: Stays on the path leading to good entertainment. Everyone that knows me knows that post-apocalyptic is my favorite category for a movie!
Get ready for a gruesome, dreary, dark, depressing, sad, horrific, gut wrenching glimpse of post apocalyptic life in the not too distant future. I haven't read the book so I have no baseline other than what the film offered. Acting is excellent. Cinematography is excellent. It is basically a journey from point A to point B keeping an eye open for cannibals passing along the roads. I had a hard time believing all life on Earth had been wiped out except for rag-tag bands of humans with nothing at all left to eat. The film delivers a message and will briefly open your eyes to how good our lives are and what we all take for granted.


****/*****

4/5 Stars

The Runaways (2010)

Dakota Fanning stars in this musical biopic as Cherie Currie, lead singer of the 1970s all-girl rock group the Runaways, whose meteoric rise up the charts was saturated with drugs and other excesses of the era. Though the Runaways start out as a novelty act, the rock 'n' roll chops of Joan Jett (Kristen Stewart), Lita Ford (Scout Taylor-Compton) and the other girls lift the group to international stardom. Floria Sigismondi directs.
I though this movie was very good, but the title of The Runaways is kind of misleading it focused mainly on Cherie and Joan. I was a little curious about "the rest of the story". A new respect for Dakota Fanning as an actress after seeing this film. she was awesome.

It's a little disturbing to see Dakota Fanning as a sex symbol since we have seen her as a little girl just a little while ago but once you get over that its not so bad. Excellent teen film, but not really telling the story of the Runaways the way it should. Dakota Fanning is really good in this film though and Kristen Stewart is not to shabby either. Michael Shannon is hilarious in this film. If you like Dakota and Kristen, this is a must see.


***/*****

3/5 Stars

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

She's Out of My League (2010)

Kirk is an average Joe who works as a TSA agent at the Pittsburgh airport with his friends. The status quo of his fairly monotonous life ends when he meets Molly, a smart, kind and gorgeous blonde. Because she's way out of his league (she's a hard 10 and he is but a 5), Kirk knows there's no way on earth she's ever going to fall for him. Or is there...?
I expected a raunchy, silly sex comedy, but "She's Out of My League" was a actually a funny and sweet romantic comedy that is a bit smarter than the ads let on. Jay Baruchel plays Kirk, a genuine nice guy thats a bit down on his luck in the love department. Alice Eve is Molly, a Hard 10 on the scale of hotness, looking for someone nice and a bit safe after her last breakup. A chance meeting at an airport sets up the two on a date. When the pair start dating, their friends start wondering if the two can last since there is such a space between the tow At best Kirk is a 6... What happens could have been a by the numbers comedy, but the smart scripts works, and the cast is excellent. The supporting players make this movie work really well and the two leads are perfect in their roles. Alice Eve is very pretty, but has the acting chops to make you really like her character. Jay Baruchel is becoming one of my favorite actors. Between his voice work on How to Train your Dragon, and his other movie appearances, Baruchel is becoming one of the better young actors out there. This is a great funny movie. Light enough for a fun afternoon viewing, but it has heart enough that you at least think a moment about relationships and how folks get along.

Giving four stars to a date film like this is not my pattern but I'm rating it for how much I liked it, and I truly did. Kirk is an airport security guard and a nerd. He's always wanted to be a pilot, but this is as far as he's likely to get. He has three friends who work with him, all nerds like him. His girlfriend Marnie, whom Kirk always considered at least an 8-1/2 but whom his friend "Stainer" thinks is skanky, has just broken up with him - yet Kirk's family inexplicably still treat her like a daughter/sister, and include her AND her new man in all their family doings, yet. (The family, incidentally, includes a boor of a father, a loutish brother, and the brother's common (and pregnant) fiance...Kirk may be a dork, but he and his mom - sometimes - are the only mannered people in the family.) Into the airport comes the perfect 10 woman, Molly, who has occasion to meet Kirk when he delivers to her something she left behind when his friends were falling all over themselves to give her a pat-down search. Molly is not only a 10 in looks, she's a 10 in heart too - a beautiful girl who has generosity of spirit to spare, without the ego and entitlement feelings of similar females. The story of how she and Kirk haltingly begin a relationship, with the oafs in his family, the snobs in hers, and Kirk's friends giving sideline grief makes for many laughs. The ex-girlfriend Marnie also plays a pivotal role, becoming jealous when she sees the interest such a girl as Molly has in the man she dumped. (And I loved the scene where Kirk's family, including Marnie and her new but now less desirable guy, file into the airport leaving for Branson wearing identical school bus-yellow sweatshirts proclaiming, "Branson Bound!") There are a couple of hilarious scenes involving shaving scrotal hair and being over-stimulated while still fully clothed that donate to the film's R rating. Jay Baruchel is perfect as the diffident but endearing Kirk and has a lot of talent backing him up.


4/5 Stars

****/*****