Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Pirate (1948)

A musical directed by Vincente Minnelli, starring Judy Garland and Gene Kelly.
A womanizing actor comes to town and is attracted to a woman who is going to marry a man who she does not love. The actor then does anything he can to keep her from marrying the other man.
I watched this because of Judy Garland and didn't really enjoy much else about it. I've got movie overload (336+ films in 5 months) so I'm giving it o.k. because it wasn't great, but it had Judy.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Exorcist trilogy (1973 - 1990)

A horror directed by William Friedkin, John Boorman and William Peter Blatty.
In each of the films, someone is possessed by an evil spirit and has trouble getting treatment for this problem.
This series is THE ONE that gave sequels a bad name. The first flick is brutal, but after that, there's no hill, it's just DOWN! It only makes sense: How can you follow floor pissing, pea soup spewing and crucifix masturbation? I'm giving the first movie green, but the rest red. Watch me do it!

Ghoulies (1985)

A horror directed by Charles Band.
The son of an evil magician inherits the family house and begins using the procedures that he finds in books there. He calls a few small monsters to his aid until 2 of them trick him into using a ritual of their choice.
It was very clear that this was a Full Moon movie as I saw names from The Puppet Master and Subspecies series in the opening credits. What followed was cheesy b horror without a doubt, but it didn't live up to company standards as I see them. The monsters were funny and looked like hand puppets and the plot was cheesy, but not gouda. I'm giving it a less than illustrious orange rating.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Dead Calm (1989)

A thriller directed by Phillip Noyce, based on the book by Charles Williams.
A husband and wife are out sailing when a man boards their ship from a dingy near another ship. When the husband goes to investigate the other ship, the stranger steals his ship and wife.
Who could resist action hero Dr. Grant locked inside a sinking ship? The setting and plot were very well done. I'm giving it a green rating as an underdog victory. This "shot in the dark" b movie turned out to actually be good.

Possession (1981)

A mystery directed by Anderzej Zulawski.
A man returns home from a business trip to find that his wife is leaving him. She is cheating on him, but then she leaves that man too. I copied this from Wikipedia because what I saw was totally incoherent.
Sam Neil is cool and it's fun to see him being bad, but otherwise this was horrible. I like to know what's going on when I watch a movie and this gave me no clues in the plot department. I'll just have to rate it bad.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

In the Mouth of Madness (1995)

A horror directed by John Carpenter.
A freelance claims investigator goes on a road trip to find a missing author and finds out that he is a character in a book.
I thought this was pretty cool. It's standard fare for horror flicks, but it has it's own unique twist. I wish they had shown the monsters more, but otherwise, I like it. This film is the third in a series that includes The Thing and Prince of Darkness, so if you like that kind of stuff, this is worth watching.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Samurai series (1954 - 1956)

action films directed by Hiroshi Inagaki.
Musashi Miyamoto grows from a young soldier to an accomplished fencer.
There was no audio at the end of the third film.
This was typical samurai stuff. Everybody's poor except the nobles and almost everyone fights. I'm rating it o.k. for conforming to the norm.

Prince of Darkness (1987)

A horror directed by John Carpenter.
A group of scientists gather in a church to observe a container of green liquid that is doing strange things. The green substance drips onto the ceiling and sprays into the mouth of a scientist who then contaminates others by spitting in their faces. One of the female scientists appears to get pregnant and decompose before trying to pull a demon through a mirror.
This film had a great setting and that "creepy supernatural thriller" type of way about it. It also features cameos of Mr. Miyagi (of Karate Kid fame) and Alice Cooper (of shock rock glory) Unfortunately, that's all it had. It gets worthy for being spooky, but otherwise it sucks.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Sliver (1993)

A psychological thriller directed by Phillip Noyce.
A rich and successful woman moves into a large apartment building and falls in love with the building's owner who has the whole place under surveilence.
There was so much overt sexuality in this movie that it was almost softcore porn. Couples having sex became a common sight. What I really found odd was the fact that the building owner's walls contained Danzig and Megadeth posters, but it always seemed like he was listening to techno. Another odd thing is that the surveilence system supposedly cost millions, but it was all in black and white. I didn't hate this, but it wasn't good and there were too many of these slight oversights. I'm giving it an orange not so great rating.

The Piano (1993)

A drama directed by Jane Campion.
A mute pianist is wed to an American man and brings her daughter and piano with her. She is supposed to give lessons to a man who has the piano at his hut, but he just ends up molesting her and she eventually falls in love with him instead of her husband.
I've felt the pain of being away from something that I need and it will drive a person to do unreasonable things. The husband really overreacted about his wife's infidelity when he chopped her finger off. At the end I was really hoping that the woman would drown with the piano and was disappointed when she surfaced. Overall, I thought it was alright and the music was good, so I'm rating it worthy.

Samurai Champloo (2004 2005)

An anime created and directed by Shinichiro Watanabe.
A girl who is looking for the "sunflower samurai" recruits 2 young samurai as bodyguards. These young men are enemies and have sworn to kill eachother once their mission is over.
This is one of my favorite newer animes and I was disappointed when it ended. I wanted to watch more. The fights are great and the mini-plots are always amusing. There are also a few joke episodes scattered through the series. I'm rating it awesome and if you like anime, I think you'll agree.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Tommy (1975)

A musical directed by Ken Russel with music by The Who.
A boy witnesses his mother's new boyfriend killing his real father and ceases to hear and see. He eventually becomes a pinball champion and regains his senses, only to become an unsucessful Christ figure.
I usually don't like musicals because I can't play guitar while watching them. This one was alright because it was the true purpose of the band, The Who to create it. Illuminati symbolism abounds as the church-goers worship Marilyn Monroe (queen semiramis) and Tommy sits in his hang-glider (the triangular pyramid shaped riding section). I'm sure there is much more of this type of thing in the film, but I don't have the patience to go into detail about it here. A musical getting an o.k. is like any other film getting "worthy", so if you like this, watch The Rocky Horror Picture Show or some other musical from the 70s.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Ironweed (1987)

A tragedy directed by Hector Babenco, starring Jack Nicholson and Meryl Streep.
Our old pal, Jack wakes up in an alleyway in 1930s Albany, Ny and smashes an empty booze bottle. Things only go downhill from there when he encounters a friend with cancer who wants to drink himself to death and a sick girlfriend (aka hooker).
I may have rated another film as "the most tragic thing I've ever seen", but this one is definitely in the running for that title. HOWEVER, the characters, setting and plot were done well and really convey the ideas that went into making this. In this case, tragic is a good thing and I'm giving this a nice, green rating for living up to some of the main criteria by which I judge films.

Puppet Master series (1989 - 2004)

A horror fantasy from Full Moon Features.
Andre Toulon is a puppeteer who has living puppets made by a method taught to him by an Egyptian sorceror. He escapes Nazi Gemany with his puppets and secret, only to be found dead in America with no puppets. A young scientist moves into the hotel where Toulon died and with the help of a psychic friend, finds the puppets and figures out their secret.
When I was younger, I watched this series and liked the puppets very much. I wanted some of my own (as any boy would) and this still holds true. The last 3 films in the series (retro, legacy and vs demonic toys) were total crap, but the first 6 were pretty good. I'm rating this worthy for full screen and a few shitty sequels. If you like this, watch Subspecies as it's made by the same company.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Legend of the Drunken Tiger (1991)

A kung fu directed by Tai Bou-San.
A drunken master fights a foreign invasion.
The audio was horribly off time and the dubbing was bad.
When good fu and bad dubbing combine, they make a great movie. Chinese people played foreigners at the end and the fighting was good thoughout. There was actual drinking and drunken boxing, so this scores good. Watch it for the fu and not for the plot.

The Omen series (1976 - 2006)

Psychological thrillers directed by Richard Donner, Don Taylor, Graham Baker, John Moore, Jorge Montesi and Dominique Othenin-Girard.
The antichrist is born and his father is led on a quest to destroy him with the help of individuals working in the religion industry.
The first few films in this series were really good, but the 90s one was uber-cheesy and the 2006 remake made me question why it was even made. In the film in which Damien is grown up, he is portrayed by Sam Neil (Dr. Grant of Jurassic Park fame). These films made me want to watch the Exorcist series, so if you're into that kind of thing, this might be up your alley. I'm rating it o.k. because I wasn't very excited about it.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Slaughterhouse Five (1972)

A drama directed by George Roy Hill.
A man becomes "unstuck in time" and experiences scenes from his life in no coherent order. He is in World War 2, a rich businessman and an alien abductee living on the planet Tralfamador.
This film looks and sounds good and it seemed like a good idea until I finished watching it. Because of the incoherent order of events, the plot suffers greatly. Billy and Spot's characters are developed very well, so I'm rating it o.k.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Rocky series (1976 - 2006)

Action films directed by John G. Avildsen and Sylvester Stallone.
A boxer is constantly being challenged in the ring, in training and in his life with family members.
These films were made in order with the best coming first, followed by a long slow decline in quality. The soundtrack is one of the least creative things I've ever heard as it includes mainly the same song in every movie. The Rocky and Paulie characters are developed very well while all others are left to rot. I'm rating the series o.k. and if you like this, check out Rambo.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Kung Fu Master Named Drunken Cat (1978)

A kung fu directed by Cheung Sam.
A martial artist who learns kung fu from movies accidentaly gets diamonds hidden in candy and the owners of the diamonds want them back.
When I watch a kung fu flick with the word "drunken" in the title, I expect some drunken boxing. This had none. There was no master by the name of "drunken cat" and nobody even pretended to be drunk. The tandem fight was pretty cool, but otherwise it didn't deliver what it promised. I'm rating it bad for lies. Along with the lies, I could find no pictures from this film. Please don't watch this.

Rambo series (1982 - 2008)

Action films directed by Ted Kotcheff, George P. Cosmatos, Peter MacDonald and Sylvester Stallone.
A Vietnam veteran is forced into intense combat situations on tight schedules.
The main elements of this film series are explosions, gunfire, blood and the military. If you like action packed movies in which combat and violence play a central role, watch this. I'm rating it good because it delivers EXACTLY what it promises. KABLASTO!!!!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Tusk (1980)

A drama directed by Alejandro Jodorowsky.
A girl in India shares a prized elephant with the elephant trainer. When the girl comes back from school in England, the elephant is provoked into violence at the party. The elephant then gets loose in a failed attempt by the local low lifes to steal it and multiple parties make an effort to catch it.
The audio and video were horrible, but there was a cool fade in/fade out effect that was used between some scenes. The audio was in French and it had Spanish and English subtitles.
I knew that I had the right movie when one man forced another to give him a piggy back ride over a mud puddle. This is not like Jodorowsky's famous masterpieces, but it was still good. The characters were portrayed well and it had a good plot. There were some distinct "Jodorowsky moments" and there was a hint of magic and spirituality to it. I watched it because of who made it, but it's probably worth a view. I like it, so I'm saying good.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Corpse Bride (2005)

An animated musical directed by Tim Burton and Mike Johnson.
At a wedding rehersal, the groom forgets his lines and goes to the forest to practice. When he says them right, he accidentally awakens the ghost of a bride who was murdered there and is transported to the land of the dead.
The animation was cool and the setting was good. I usually like Tim Burton stuff, so I'm rating it a worthy blue. If you like The Nightmare Before Christmas, you'll like this.

Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (2010)

An action film directed by Mike Newell.
When the Persian army invades a city, one of the princes steals a magic dagger.
I'm reviewing this because of how accurate it was to the video game... FUCK THAT!!! They really fucked this one up! I would have loved to see a new movie based on the video game that was the same story, but that isn't what I saw. No sand monsters, no vizeer, no nameless prince, no Farah, no getting lost in mazes, no annoying vultures or bats, the prince is dressed like he is in the 3rd game, the large sand item was at the end only, I could go on forever. They should have just made some crappy action flick and not used the name. I might have rated it o.k. without the name, but since they used it, I declare SHIT!

Friday, September 3, 2010

The Rainbow Thief (1990)

A drama directed by Alejandro Jodorowsky.
A rich and soon-to-be dead man has an heir who lives in the sewers with a thief. The thief has run-ins with various characters in town.
Apparently, the producers were so afraid of Alejandro that they forbid him from changing anything in the script, so what is seen is only a shadow of what it should have been. The whole film was focused on the thief, Dima and his character was developed well while others were merely extras in Dima's story. The giant and the midget were an odd pair and the supposedly blind beggars amused me slightly. The rich uncle was pretty wild and the plot was cool. I know you're expecting a green or purple because "Jodorowsky can do no wrong", but tough shit. I'm human, not a character in a film. Hence, this gets a blue "pretty good" rating because Alejandro was denied influence in it and it barely resembled the masterpieces of the great Jodorowsky.

Easter Parade (1948)

A musical directed by Charles Walters, starring Judy Garland and Fred Astaire.
When a dancing team breaks up, the man decides that he can dance just as well with any woman and recruits a young cabaret dancer for his act.
I've got this strange Judy Garland obsession, otherwise I wouldn't be watching a film like this. The lyrics were extremely predictable and the spring-loaded relationships kind of put me off, but Judy's managers obviously fed her the right combination of drugs to put on a great performance. Fred Astaire was cool, but old (even in 1948) and I so saw the ending coming from a mile away complete with "epic" final song). I'm rating it o.k. for the balance of Judy Garland in a crap movie.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

The Whole Nine Yards (2000)

A film noir directed by Jonathan Lynn.
A contract killer moves in next door to a dentist who is unhappy with his wife. The wife persuades the man to turn the contract killer into the mob and the plot twists and turns uncontrollably.
The main character is supposed to be funny, but comes off as a moron. What's really funny is the lack of reaction to this by the other characters. I'm feeling lenient tonight, so I'm rating it blue. I enjoyed watching this, but it sure didn't go that extra mile to get green.

Asylum (1972)

A horror directed by Roy Ward Baker.
A doctor goes for a job interview at an insane asylum and is asked to guess which patient used to be the doctor there. He visits each patient and they tell him their story in a flash back.
The audio was pretty wild despite my normalizer. I can only imagine how bad it would have been without.
The first patient's story was scary, but the rest seemed like episodes of Tales From the Crypt or Are You Afraid of the Dark. I was trying to guess along with the new doctor and I could only find one patient that I knew wasn't the old doctor. The last patient's story seemed like it was there as bait leading to a wrong answer, so it couldn't be him. Due to the plot twist at the end, guessing became a non-issue. I'm rating this blue for being pretty good. It could have been better with a different ending.