Thursday, January 29, 2009

GI JOE RISE OF THE COBRA


JAN 27, 2009


Stephen Sommers. The name is about to go household. Well, about as household as Bruckheimer I suppose. Sommers delivers the summer whirligigs of flames at your local cineplex. He is the director of such catastrophic, bloated vehicles as THE MUMMY and VAN HELSING. I really don't think I need to give you any more in order for you to comprehend what this guy does. Both THE MUMMY and VAN HELSING are UNIVERSAL throwbacks to an era when people gave a damn about actors like Boris Karloff and Bela Legosi. They were quick-cash knockoffs of thing we respect from our collective cinematic childhoods.

It makes absolute sense that a man of Sommers' pedigree would be financially lashed to the director's chair of the new GI JOE movie. It makes deafening sense to all. But it also slathers a patina of Cheezewhiz all over the project. Sommers is a cornball director with cornball projects. I think it should be clear to you that GI JOE is going to be a non-serious movie. I am not talking about a comic book movie, I am talking about a movie that will create a world that can never exist, nor will you want it to.

And dammit, I wanted hope. Apparently, there is going to be an ad this coming Superbowl Sunday for this film. If it is airing during the big SS, the ad should have all of the plumes of whirligig flames that we can handle. It will be all of the empty calories that we ever wanted...but dammit, that Sommers fool is helming this boat, and I really don't like his work.

If you are a male and you spent some time in the late 80s and early 90s, then you can't escape GI JOE. If you happened to be around in the 70s pre-cartoon era, then you really know what is going on. And what is going on is fear. Nerve-wracking and brutal fear that grips and freezes your bowels. Dennis Quaid? Has that man ever sported a muscular build? Is he sporting one now? NO ON BOTH COUNTS. Marlon Wayans? Should he be acting? Has he ever been in anything good? NO ON BOTH COUNTS.Damn you Hollywood, get it right.




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Tuesday, January 27, 2009



JAN 26, 2009
MILK
With the Academy Awards almost here, I am continuing my contender takedown. Recently I watched Sean Penn work his magic in MILK.

I have to say that there are only a few true chameleons out there who are acting in American film. Sean Penn is one such chameleon. He becomes the character that he acts. The shreds of Sean Penn and who that individual is disappear when he is onscreen. This is mesmerizing.

MILK is one of those stories like VALKYRIE or 300. You know how the thing is going to end. This film doesn't even shy away from that fact and references it as soon as it gets rolling.

But the players, my goodness, the players in this film really put it down. James Franco came out swinging and so did Emile (Speed Racer) Hirsch. Josh Brolin is also coming on strong these days. I have always dismissed him because he has been ushered in nepotism style as the son of James...but he is proving to have some chops. NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN was key to my reluctant support of this guy. MILK seems to be the finalizer.



This is an agenda film with a very human drive underneath it all. The push is obviously that anyone who is gay has the same rights as anyone who is straight. This is obviously true, and it is driven home by the vicious arguments and violence against such a way of thought which permeate this film. Harvey Milk was a living, breathing individual who had a different sexual orientation than the general population. All he wanted was the rights for himself and the people of his community.



The film is intense and heartbreaking. Sean Penn has put his soul on the line for this one. I am telling you, this coming Academy Awards is going to be intense.

More of my musings can be found HERE. Furthermore, you contact me at admin@mediasaurs.
com

Monday, January 26, 2009

DOUBT - A BADASS MOVIE REVIEW



JAN 23, 2009
DOUBT

With the Academy Awards around the corner, I am powering through all of the contenders.DOUBT is a movie that has been on my horizon for some time, so I did the takedown. I have to cite that this is going to be subjective as hell. I have to admit first off that I knew that this was a film adapted from a stageplay. With that knowledge, the trickster was able to have his way with me by constantly by drawing attention to the stage aspects of the film. Stage acting requires a lot of talk and subtleties. I would say that the subtleties that Phillip Seymour
Hoffman, Meryl Street and Amy Adams have to convey are probably as strong if not stronger than what any actor would have top convey onstage. I state this because of the extreme close-ups that permeate modern film.

Some movies translate well from the stage. DEATH OF A SALESMAN or GLENGARRY GLEN
ROSS are two examples that come to mind. Other films get tripped up in the new freedom that film affords vs the confines of the stage. Some translations from the stage to film flounder neatly inbetween it all. DOUBT seems to be caught up in the middle-ground translation flounder. The upshot is that the acting is SO MESMERIZINGLY GOOD that the viewer is made unaware of the translation issues until retrospect.

In a nutshell, there are a few sets and a whole LOT of talk. However, the slight and the heavy-handed in the atmosphere of all the sets really marks this as a beautiful film in some ways. Autumn leaves blowing around Philip Seymour Hoffman are a prime example of things that could never have happened onstage.

The story? It is really rather simple. Meryl Streep's character suspects Hoffman's character of an improper relationship with a male student at a catholic school. There is no evidence, only the facial tics and excellent dialogue to drive us towards the truth. But check the title of the film, because that is where you will always be.

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com

Saturday, January 24, 2009

THE ALPHABET KILLER and CARY EWLES - A BADASS MOVIE REVIEW


JAN 23, 2009
THE ALPHABET KILLER AND CARY ELWES
I am halfway through the ALPHABET KILLER. To put it in the simplest terms as possible: The film isn't good. Why am I only halfway through it? More interesting things came up. I will finish it later. The story is about a detective who is played by Eliza Dushku who completely snaps while investigating a serial killer. The serial killer likes to kill girls who have their first and last names starting with the same letter of the alphabet. Then he dumps the body in a town starting with the same letter as well. Somehow, we are supposed to cut this film all sorts of slack because it is "based on true events."

The last time I tried to cut a movie slack because it was based on true events was THE SERPENT AND THE RAINBOW. If you have suffered through that ridiculous voodoo movie, you know that the events are completely untrue in that movie, but that it was written by people who can't write.The ALPHABET KILLER isn't a bad movie really. I am reserving most of my judgement until I see those credits roll. I have to say that what is keeping me going in this film has nothing to do with a murderer, young girls or some mystery about the alphabet. What is keeping me going is my wondering about all of these broken down actors starring in it.
Ms. Dushku catches a pass, this is her vehicle. But Cary Elwes? He was the smart-assed swashbuckler in THE PRINCESS BRIDE. Cary Elwes has hit my radar TWICE since TPB. Once was in SAW 1 and the other time is now with this ALPHABET SOUP movie. Has-been actors Timothy Hutton (who has an Academy Award for fux sake), Michael Ironside and Tom Noonan are also in this movie. But Cary Elwes? I always thought he was from a class of actors that wouldn't step in this kind of direction. He seemed built to shoot into the stratosphere. Maybe not though, a cursory IMDB takedown of his career shows a bunch of television and cartoon voice work. But here he is, bloated and working his way through a role that is truly beneath him. Consequently, I am having a hard time enjoying this movie. I'll say more when I finish it.

*Epilogue*
Ok, I finished it. It forced me to go and do some research on the actual case that was being referenced. As a result, the absolute frustration on the line that they were trying to sell me in this film warranted that I write this now. The movie is stupid beyond reason. The movie posits the killer as one of the main characters that in no way could have done what was said to have been done. He shows up in a random way and he exposes himself as the killer in an even more random way. This movie is preposterous. I question the integrity of all of the actors involved. When I first wrote this, I was zeroing in on Cary Ewles, but he is just a part of the big ugly puzzle. Timothy Hutton is much more of a culprit as I think about it. Cary Ewles was truly aimed for the stratosphere. However, Timothy Hutton was aimed for the stratosphere, and he was riding on an Oscar missile. What are both of these clowns thinking? How could they have said yes to this trash? This movie is a fail. It doesn't deliver. Just when you think it might, it slips by and punks out...HARD. If you sit through it you will see what I am talking about. The last scene is one of those scenes that you have learned to hate in film. It is akin to the large "TO BE CONTINUED" that has gone across the screen of too many television shows.
Pfeh.

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Friday, January 23, 2009

ROCKNROLLA AND LAYER CAKE - A DOUBLE BADASS REVIEW


JAN 22, 2009



I just watched ROCKNROLLA for the second time. It was a PSP viewing (jacked to the TV) and it was superior. I have been wondering to myself why this thing didn't take off like SNATCH or even have the backroom respect that LOCK STOCK and 2 SMOKING BARRELS had. My conclusion is that there is just too much chatter in this film. In order for ROCKNROLLA to hit its proper pacing, a lot of verbiage has to be delivered. Sure, a lot of it is fun, but it grows tedious. I must say that Guy Ritchie knows his action sequencing. I also have to say that he has a thing about bullet-proof Russians. My favorite scene is when the aforementioned Russians are comparing scars a-la JAWS. Genius.

I followed ROCKNROLLA with LAYER CAKE which is a Daniel Craig film I have started and stopped about thirty times in the past five years. I took the full dosage last night and was impressed. Daniel Craig is smooth. He has always been smooth. He was officially on my radar when I saw him in MUNICH and viola, now he is James fucking Bond. LAYER CAKE is another modern British crime story. Betrayal and lies cloud this film as much as they do ROCKNROLLA.


I would actually be willing to posit that LAYER CAKE is better executed than ROCKNROLLA. However, ROCKNROLLA wins with a stronger plot. LAYER CAKE is that old gangster theme "WHAT CAN I DO" by 8ball and MJG. ROCKNROLLA is a little different, and they both drip with style, style and more style. From smoothly grooved music to crazy shots to ridiculous splatterific violence, both of these films should be consumed back to back. One is the meal, and one is dessert. I am serious, they compliment each other that well.


Oh, and it is always great to hear gangsters running around calling each other poofs, wankers and cheeky bastards. Furthermore, when stuff gets real, someone is bound to yell, "bollocks."

More of my musings can be found HERE. Furthermore, you contact me at mailto:admin@mediasaurs.com

Thursday, January 22, 2009

MORE WOLVERINE NOIZE


JAN 21, 2009


There is so much hype about this upcoming movie that someone needs to step up and piss on the campfire. I heartily volunteer.

Something is wrong with this movie. I don't know what, but something is horribly wrong with it, and we are being told that everything is ok. Hugh Jackman's letter to AICN betrays a series of things. Here it is in a nutshell:I wanted to reach out and let you know that due to scheduling conflicts with certain cast members and location/weather considerations, we had to wait until now to shoot a couple of scenes. Please rest assured that WOLVERINE will be badass and hopefully meet all of your expectations. I am stoked by the positive response to the teaser, which clearly reflects the tone and scope of the film. If you like that, we've got much more in store!

This film has been in the can since at least last summer. Why is Fox sitting on it and doing reshoots? Why is Hugh Jackman going headlong into fanboy territory to stoke the fires? Something is amiss. The most notable false note is the director, Gavin Hood. This is a nobody, no comic-book RENDITION directing impostor.

The trailer looks good, but disjointed. Hugh Jackman looks veiny, but he doesn't feel like he has what he had in the X-men movies. Liev Schreiber as Sabretooth? X-Men 2 was where it was at with the Wolverine story, and this stuff that is showing up just doesn't feel right. There is a lot of bang and pow in that trailer. But think about the story that they say they are going to present: it is too grand. I predict emptiness. But hey, I could be wrong, check it out: Barack Obama is President and I was the number 1 doubter that America could wake up to that level of change.


*Edit*

And now Hugh Jackman is going to be the host of the next Academy Awards. I wonder...

More of my musings can be found HERE. Furthermore, you contact me at mailto:admin@mediasaurs.com

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

IGOR - A BADASS MOVIE REVIEW


JAN 19, 2009


Every now and then, a movie drops and falls completely through the cracks. For the most part, it is never to be heard from again. The main reasons for this sort of occurrence usually has to do with budget or plot. At times though a movie has all of the trappings of something that is good, yet fails because it can't be categorized or shoehorned into a working genre definition.
Igor is one of those movies. It is animated in the modern CG style that we know from NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS and THE CORPSE BRIDE and follows a similar dark story. However, the darkness that this movie chooses to delve into is greater than most movies in the "PG love story that references horror films" category. The references will keep your head swimming as you try to piece together the entire horror film syllabus used to create the backdrop of this film.

Igor is of of a race of Igors that works for one of the many, many evil scientists in need of hunchbacked assistants. The thing about the Igor that the camera chooses to follow is that he is witty, smart and has scientific dreams of his own.

I am not saying that this is the best movie I have seen in a long time, but it sure wasn't the worst. The voice talents of John Cusack, Steve Buscemi, Molly Shannon, John Cleese and others make the film work. Oh, and the film is genuinely funny at parts too.

This is BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN with twist. I don't know, maybe it was just me, but sometimes it is nice to watch something that is light and sophisticated. More of my musings can be found HERE.


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Monday, January 19, 2009

HULK VS WOLVERINE - A BADASS MOVIE REVIEW


Jan 15th
There are 2 ULTIMATE AVENGERS DVDs out there that you can get your hands on for about three dollars each. ULTIMATE AVENGERS 1 and 2 are a little bit of fun. It is best to consume these in the presence of a 9 year old, but if you have to watch them alone, I am sure that you will have a good time. The first one focuses on THE HULK and how Bruce Banner is keeping himself medicated to keep his raging beast in control. Ultimately, he goes off of his meds and beats everyone to pulp. Iron Man, Giant Man and Captain America get the big green beatdown. There is an outtakes/gag reel at the end of it all that is worth the price of the DVD. Highlighs feature Thor burping and farting while drinking Asgardian Ale.
Next week, the same cartoon house is dropping two more of these films into our collective laps. HULK VS THOR and HULK VS WOLVERINE is a 2 disc DVD and it drops the 27th of January.
Click the this link to see the trailers for both. I have to come right out and say that THOR sucks. He always has, he needs to be killed off. In the trailer, you will see the Hulk plant a body shot on the face of Odin, but really, Thor is tired and stupid.Wolverine has been the flavor of the moment for well over 20 years. It looks like a mature treatment has been done here. Lots of blood and a sprinkling of profanity. The Wolverine trailer looks like a lot of Weapon X explanations with Deadpool and Sabretooth in the mix.
Normally, I don't get excited about cartoons, and I am not sure I am excited about these, but I have to find a 9 year old and watch them both with the quickness.
*post edit*
I have gotten my hands on said cartoons, I will update once I sit down and watch them with the aforementioned 9 year old.
More of my musings can be found HERE. Furthermore, you contact me at admin@mediasaurs.com

Thursday, January 15, 2009

KILLSHOT


JAN 14, 2009


What an unfortunate name for a movie. The mediocrity is coursing through Hollywood and this is an example of it. Some of the lamest movie titles have been floating around. KillShot is lame, because a cursory IMDB takedown cites a different movie titled, "Kill Shot" with Casper Van Dien and Denise Richards from back in 1995. The big difference in the movie title being the space between the words KILL and SHOT. Have all of the good ideas in the standard naming conventions of ALL THINGS been used up? Don't get me started on the names of the vehicles on the road. And at this point, it seems that you probably shouldn't get me started with the names of movies in the theaters.


The fact of the matter is that this film is going to be Rourke's next vehicle, and it looks like it is just the thing he can do. Diane Lane is in there and so is Thomas (I-was-miscast-as-the Punisher) Jane. From the trailer, it looks like Rosario Dawson is there for a bunch of titillation, but it doesn't seem that she is a player. Rourke is the man. Anyone who can dress in drag the way he does in ANIMAL FACTORY deserves their own franchise. KILLSHOT drops later this month. It has been delayed and pushed back regularly for some time now. Does it have problems? Probably. But watch that trailer.


This thing is going to rip it up, even if you only Netflix it across.
More of my musings can be found HERE. Furthermore, you contact me at admin@mediasaurs.com

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

GRAN TORINO Palette swap


JAN 12, 2009

GRAN TORINO was a horrible movie. Seriously. What the hell is wrong with Clint Eastwood? Everything seemed to be correct in his world, and then he married a local newswoman and got really weird. I have yet to sit through his Iwo Jima movies. Nor do I care to. The last thing that he did of substance was MILLION DOLLAR BABY, and come on...if it hadn't been Eastwood and Freeman holding down the fort, that this would have dried up and blown away.The concept of Eastwood holding down the fort so the project doesn't dry up and blow away is what is supposed to save us with GRAN TORINO. Crotchety Eastwood does indeed act in this film. It is unfortunate that he is saddled with a bunch of non-actors in this film that bog a lot of it down with dysfunctional/dyscomfortable line delivery. It simply doesn't work. The story is contrived. The conflict is a cliche and the conclusion was done better in any number of other movies from COOL HAND LUKE on down.
Lastly, Clint warbles a gravelly blues rendition of his title song in the end credits. I kid you not, it is something like this: Driving in my Gran Torino/wind in my hair...Just because you are old Clint, doesn't men you have to serve us cinematic Metamucil. My palatte was so befouled and soured by this film that last night I fired up THE UNFORGIVEN just so I could see this old man in something decent. Now I need to watch ANY WHICH WAY BUT LOOSE to clear that horrible blues music out of my head with some old school Clint approved honky-tonk.

More of my musings can be found HERE. Furthermore, you contact me at admin@mediasaurs.com

Saturday, January 10, 2009

CRANK2 TRAILER!!


JAN 08, 2009
I am Jason Statham's biggest fan. You think I am lying? You should read my constant gushing over DEATHRACE in this thread right here. I really think that DEATHRACE was one of he best films that I experienced in the theater last year. A lot of fun. Hang your brain at the door and go. As far as theater experiences go, DEATHRACE was just a hair or two over THE BANK JOB which was a wonderful, stylized period piece. Statham deserves an Academy Award for his believable "corner brick beatdown" that he performs towards the end of the film.
The truth of the matter is that I am gushing about Statham because I have just watched the NSFW trailer for CRANK 2. CRANK 1 was one of the most offensive mainstream films I have ever watched. It pushed boundaries and it threw so much at you that it was at times completely painful to watch. But the humor was underneath it all, and it felt strangely like any number of video games I have played. Well, CRANK 2 looks like it will be even more over the top. CRANK 1 required Statham to be jacked up on drugs. CRANK 2 is going to require electricity.
The truth of the matter is that this NSFW RED BAND TRAILER is the hardest NSFW RED BAND TRAILER I have ever seen, period. HARDCORE. It is reminiscent of the LEBOWSKI F-WORD REMIX video. You be the judge. And while you are at it, join in on the discussion at the CRANK 2 THREAD.More of my musings can be found HERE. Furthermore, you contact me at admin@mediasaurs.com

Friday, January 9, 2009

BITCH SLAP THE MOVIE


JAN 07, 2009
I worked off and on for a video store during a crucial season in my life. The end result of that experience was that I was caught up completely on A-list movies. The part that I don't talk about much is that I was also caught up on B-movies as well. I have TROMA FILMS on lock. If it is of a low production value and smacks of something straight out of a drive-in from the '70s, my attention is piqued.
With that introduction, I would like to present to you BITCH SLAP the movie. This look like a Tarantino salute to Russ Meyers. This looks like FASTER PUSSYCAT with a budget. It looks like a lot of fun in a "of course it is going to suck" sort of way. There is no justification for this film. It preys upon the basest of the base and it is built to offend. Watch the trailer, and tell me that you aren't intrigued.



Recently, I wave been re-wendng my way through the British version of THE OFFICE. I watched it a few years ago, and was floored by its brilliance. So floored was I that I have completely sidestepped the American version. Steve Carell gives me the creeps. Ricky Gervais does too, but I am pretty sure Gervais is acting. I am not so sure with Carell. That man is a straight up freak. But I am going to do an American OFFICE takedown and I will be keeping you posted as I pit the Brits vs the Americans.More of my musings can be found HERE. Furthermore, you contact me at admin@mediasaurs.com

Thursday, January 8, 2009

IP MAN


JAN 07, 2009

I like Kung Fu movies. It sounds awkward saying "Kung Fu" because all sorts of martial arts are involved. I even tried to like that Steven Seagull movie that went straight to video a little bit ago, but it was horrible.
So when TRAPANI came over the other night and started talking about some movie called IP MAN, I paid some skeptical attention. TRAPANI is a thorough fellow and he did the youtube takedown to get me the footage that he wanted me to see. You can see it here. I would suggest watching this thing soon...this is the kind of vid that gets yanked for copyright infringement. The official site is here.These fight sequences are fast and superior. This Donnie Yen kid takes off where it seems Jet Li got lost doing stupid Hollywood blockbusters like THE MUMMY XIV.
I have no idea what "IP MAN" means and if you click the link above, you will also hear that I have no idea what they are saying in this film either.But I need to go headlong into this thing, it stirs me like I haven't been stirred since ONG BAK. Watch the hammer fist beat down. Stop, and watch it again. Have you ever seen anything like that in a King Fu movie? TRAPANI says that the movie itself is rather bland...but wow, I need to watch these fight sequences in context. They are NUTS.
More of my musings can be found HERE. Furthermore, you can catch me in our FORUMS.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Zach and Miri and Gran Torino

JAN 04, 2009
Review for THE WRESTLER
My head is still reeling from this movie. It is THAT good. The other part of the reelage is that I can't really talk to anyone about it. I am trying to remain spoiler-free. Once this thing gets a wider release though, it is OVER.

So, a funny cat named IM TOO FRIVILOUS demanded that I watch ZACH AND MIRI MAKE A PORNO. Well, I have been over Kevin Smith for a solid decade, so I have been sidestepping this thing like Donkey Kong barrels. FRIVILOUS persisted, and I hustled a screening. I have to say that he was definitely right on one point: JUSTIN LONG. That kid is the funniest guy on the planet right now. He plays an out and out gay porn actor that will almost make you forget JEEPERS CREEPERS. Is ZACH AND MIRI funny? I think so. Furthermore, it manages to kick up the sweetness and the mush in such a way that you are left rather befuddled at the end. This is a date movie, not a comedy about porn.

How is GRAN TORINO getting all of these great reviews? I really do believe that anyone who saw this and gave it a good review is handing the review to Eastwood simply because they are afraid he will hunt them down and shoot them in the face. GRAN TORINO is nothing special. It is actually a bummer. You want better Clint you should go back to EVERY WHICH WAY BUT LOOSE.

More of my musings can be found HERE. Furthermore, you can catch me in our FORUMS.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

THE WRESTLER - A BADASS MOVIE REVIEW


THE WRESTLER is every bit as good as the critics are all saying it is. Darren Arnofsky has finally done it and placed his mark on the great cinema wall that will be around for generations to come. He can now relax on all of his human condition dramas and attempt to outdo Verhoeven's ROBOCOP with the remake which should drop next year.


Better yet, I am just going to come out and say it: Arnofsky is a jerk. I don't like him, or the stories he tells. REQUIEM FOR A DREAM is one of the few movies I have actually turned off while attempting to mainline it. There was something about having one of those Wayans bros in it that just ruined the experience. Well, the Wayans brother and the mean-spirited script that had been sharpened to cut through the joints of your armor and leave you bleeding for a few days.


But then came the noise. It started about 6 months ago, and it has been a steady distant thunder of applause for this Arnofsky ass and Mickey Rourke. They said it was Rourke's best work ever. They said it was a masterpiece. They were even talking about a best actor award for Rourke in this next round of Academy commercialism. I was intrigued.


Rourke has been in my sights for YEARS now. I have been paying close attention to his work. I have always been impressed how this ex-boxer manages to chain-smoke his way through life and look like a god. You think that the 57 year old physique that he demonstrates in THE WRESTLER is something new? I am not going to cite SIN CITY, but everyone knows how good he was in that one. What you really need to watch DOUBLE TIME starring Dennis Rodman. That is over 10 years ago, and Rourke is a BEAST in that film. Perhaps, if Rodman's acting chops aren't up to your standards, you should see Rourke up against Stallone in the 2000 version of GET CARTER. Rourke towers over Stallone, and could have kicked Stallone's ass IRL even if the script said otherwise. And for the record, over 10 years ago I rented RUMBLEFISH, FALL TIME, and BULLET just to see Rourke in action. He is in crappy movies, but he sure does exude a manly level of charisma that seems almost sincere. It is even worth watching THE RAINMAKER to see him do his chainsmoke for about 10 minutes. MAN ON FIRE is made better because of Rourke. He has brought a seasoning to the films that he is in that completely trumps most of the macho posturing you see these days from leading men. Mickey Rourke is on the same playing field as Robert Mitchum. If you don't know what I am talking about, then you have no idea what a Hollywood badboy is all about.


Ok, intro aside, THE WRESTLER is Mickey Rourke's movie. The camera is all over him, and he doesn't shy away from it one bit. Rourke is Robin Raminski who was a major wrestling player 20 years ago under the name RANDY THE RAM. Randy is what he says he is: "a broken down piece of meat." His theme is METAL HEALTH by QUIET RIOT, and it really fits. Initially, we get to see a wrestling match setup and finish. We get to see behind the curtain and it is mildly amusing. The next set that we are exposed to is the extreme wrestling made popular by Mick Foley, the Insane Clown Posse and others. Glass, barbed wire, more barbed wire and staples. I must say that this scene is particularly well done. Just when you think that you are going to be off the hook and not have to deal with the cruelty of it all, you are yanked into it, and it is wincingly brutal.


I am going to steer from spoilers here and keep it light. Randy is trying to put his life back together. He is trying to find purpose. He is done jacking steroids into his ass cheeks and he is trying to live. His community loves him, but they aren't in his personal sphere. Randy is so alone, that he relies on this grade school kid named Adam who lives in his trailer park for social/video game interactions.


He has a woman who interests him, but she is a stripper and a broken down piece of meat in her own way. These two have been so hurt and shunted and reduced to their painful patterns that they don't know how to connect properly. It is heartbreaking.


Randy has a daughter whom he deserted that he is trying to connect with. He struggles like a child presented with a new pet. He has absolutely no idea what to do with this full-grown woman who is his own offspring.


The beauty of THE WRESTLER is that Rourke is human through and through. He is bruised, and he is raw. He is willing to take all sorts of pain to make a point, even if it costs him his day job.


Earlier in here, I pitted Rourke against Stallone. I stand by this completely. Rourke is more of a man and actor that Stallone ever was. Furthermore, THE WRESTLER is everything that ROCKY was not. ROCKY was cornball. For example, the ROCKY soundtrack is a soundtrack made specifically for the movie. THE WRESTLER is built to a soundtrack of real music that was on real charts listened by people who really live the lives that are being presented. The music that permeates this film captures the moment. From 80s cheese metal to modern cheese rap, it all fits. Apparently SLASH did some guitar work on the soundtrack, but I am going to have to give it another listen..Slash hasn't had a decent hook in years, much like Randy the Ram. ROCKY is polished Hollywood cinema. THE WRESTLER is dirty and real. ROCKY has Stallone as a dim steroetype that you are forced to love. The love you feel for Stallone is cheap, manipulated and sterile. THE WRESTLER has Rourke as a struggling everyman, who earns your love with a lovel of heart and honestly that ROCKY simply glossed over. ROCKY was poilished. THE WRESTLER is pitted concrete, and something that you have to learn to appreciate. THE WRESTLER is real. It is a human story about human failures and triumphs.


This movie is every bit as good as all of the hype it is getting and it will make you consider all of those ugly choices you make as you wheedle your way through whatever life you live.

Lakeview Terrace is trash and so is the ZUNE

JAN 2 2009

So we took the Zune in and had it exchanged for an Mork-purple Ipod Nano-nano. It is too bad. I really didn't want to give into the APPLE machine or the ITUNES mess, but anything beats a machine by Microsoft that is geared to break the APPLE machine and fails across the board. Microsoft is such a fail.
Last night we had a late viewing of LAKEVIEW TERRACE. Now of course, it is a Samuel Jackson film...he is the selling point, but other than that, I wasn't entirely sure what we were getting into. The husband is some kid I have seen before and who is going to be in the WATCHMEN, but other than that...it was a pack of nobodies.

Jackson delivers all of his lines and is quite a menace in this film. But right out of the gate, you know you have an hour and some change and the ending isn't going to be pretty. So throughout the movie, the viewer has to prep for what will be an acceptable conclusion. There is a twist that bring a potential rape and murder into the equation, but if you are conscious, you realize that the PG-13 barriers aren't going to let this happen.

It is unfortunate, Sam Jackson is a jerk in every part he acts. He is a hot commodity in Hollywood, but predictable as anything. He has become a character actor...and there was a time when it didn't seem like that was his direction.More of my musings can be found HERE. Furthermore, you can catch me in our FORUMS.

Friday, January 2, 2009

ZUNEAPOCALYSPE AND THE WATCHMEN

JAN 1 2009
HAPPY NEW YEAR

Right out of the gate, I have to ask what is up with MICROSOFT? Apparently all ZUNE music playing IPOD killers froze yesterday. Yes, I gave an 8 gig for a gift, and yes, it froze. I am on my way back to Circuit City after I post this to straighten a manager or two out. Apparently, it has to do with "leap-year programming" or some such trash. All 30 gig Zunes went down yesterday. I have always been anti-IPOD, but it looks like they win this round, and I will exchange this gift that I gave for a Nano-nano oe whateverthehell.Ok, maybe I am the only fanboy on the planet who hasn't taken the bait, but I am not on THE WATCHMEN bandwagon yet.Years ago a friend of mine gave me his bagged and backed comic book series and it proceeded to sit under my bed for 2 YEARS before I finally read it. Then I read it, and I thought it was great. I thought it was cool...but it didn't rock my world. So when I see all of this hype saying that this is some beloved comic book series, I wonder who is engineering the hype train. Whatever the case may be, Zach Snyder is one cool cat. 20th Century Fox has released some new WATCHMEN footage and the interesting thing to me is the was Zach Snyder is holding himself. I loved his DAWN OF THE DEAD over the original. I didn't really think that 300 was spectacular, but it wasn't bad. However THIS NEW FOOTAGE really has my attention.More of my musings can be found HERE. Furthermore, you can catch me in our FORUMS.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

THE WRESTLER AND THE GOD OF WAR

12/31/08
OK, I have seen THE WRESTLER. Mickey Rourke is everything that they say he is. He is a body hammer, like the old FEAR FACTORY song. The camera never lets up on him...he has to perform all the way through. If the camera isn't directly on him, it is doing his POV over his shoulder. This film is the devastator. For reals, Randy the Ram has more balls than Tony Montana...and if you know me just a little bit, you know how much I respect Tony's balls.My head is still reeling from this film. This is unfortunate for you though. When my head was reeling from MEMENTO and I told everyone that it was the dopest dope since the great cocaine days of the 80s, people took my word for it. They went in, and they went in with the hype on their backs. As a result of it all, they didn't find the movie as earth-shattering as it was. I have to downplay how good this film is. I will be writing a full review on this as soon as the New Years festivities wind down. Until then, you need to think to yourself that THE WRESTLER absolutely sucks.
GOD OF WAR CHAINS OF OLYMPUS. I have it for the PSP. It has been sitting here, staring me in the face. I haven't loaded it up yet. Why? Because I know that I am going to be lost for several hours as I master it. I will keep you posted when it happens though.More of my musings can be found HERE. Furthermore, you can catch me in our FORUMS.