Monthly Archives: May 2011

Attack The Block

A gang of inner city youths do battle with an invading alien in this South London-based sci-fi film, which kept me entertained from beginning to end.

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Devil’s DVD Disappointment: (English Haiku Review) Drive Angry

Supernatural

Satanists, punching, driving

Add up to nothing

Actor Spotlight: Proof

With our May’s Actor Spotlight of Anthony Hopkins coming to an end, I close out the month with 2005’s Proof.  Up to a few weeks ago I never heard of the film so I did a quick IMDB search to get  a feel for what I was in for.  Many compared this film to 2001’s A Beautiful Mind with Russell Crowe but since I didn’t see that film I won’t be doing any comparisons of my own.

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Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, fails to sail into new territory as it simply treads the water of the previous installments. Johnny Depp’s Jack Sparrow was initially rivaled by Captain Barbossa the undead pirate, then came Davy Jones the undead pirate, and now we have Captain Blackbeard the (yeah, you guessed it) undead pirate.  With so many undead menaces lurking around, is there a chance that the fourth go around has breathed new life into the franchise? Read the rest of this entry

Priest

Looking at the cast list for Priest you start to notice a trend. The main character is called “Priest”, the villain “Black Hat”, and there are also characters called “Priestess” and “Salesman”. They all sound like generic background extras from other films, this should give you some insight on how this film turned out.

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True Legend

Recently there have been some amazing martial-arts movies coming from Asia. Starting with the Ong Bak movies (Thailand), continuing with Ip Man 1 & 2 (Hong Kong) and this year’s 13 Assassins (Japan), Asian cinema has shown the world how to make a good movie about fighting that doesn’t involve a big name Hollywood star. If Asia can produce big budget martial-arts movies with a plot and amazing visuals why can’t Hollywood? Most of these movies have starred people who have worked in the Hollywood system or people who influenced movies like the Matrix and every other fighting movie Hollywood has made or remade. It can be done.

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Episode 71: Thor

Thor the god of thunder made his call to arms and we listened.  This week, Mike, Joe and yet another Mike do a little on the scene reaction to the film.

Then, Rene, Jonathan, and Mike do the big show.  One big enough for a Norris…I mean Norse god.

Give us a listen, because Thor commands it so.

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Devil’s DVD Advocacy: I Am Number Four

Alex Pettyfer stars as Number Four, one of nine aliens sent to earth as children when their homeworld of Loren was destroyed by the invading evil Mogadorians, and kept hidden by their Guardians until the time that their Legacys (superpowers) manifest and they are able to protect their new home planet from the Mogadorian hordes. Naturally the Mogadorians (or Mogs) want to stop this happening, but some mysterious reason prevents the evil nasty aliens from simply killing the young Loren warriors as they please. I don’t remember it properly being explained in the movie, though a little bit of web-based research into the book on which the movie is based revealed that it is to do with a “charm”. Instead, they must be hunted down and killed in numerical order. We get to see Number Three’s demise at the start of the movie, in what is a rather well-filmed and creepy jungle chase scene, so, after having to flee their home after an alien symbol appears in a burst of light on Four’s calf in front of onlookers, Four and his Guardian, Henri, (Timothy Ollyphant) know he is next on the list. Read the rest of this entry

Devil’s DVD Advocacy: Gnomeo and Juliet

I got a chance to catch up with Gnomeo and Juliet last Saturday…Saturday…Saturday, and Saturday night was alright for Gnome fightin’. Chock full of gnome on gnome MMA action, tractor pull races, and talking pink flamingos, Gnomeo and Juliet has just the right amount of action and comedy. Read the rest of this entry

Actor Spotlight: The Silence of the Lambs

“Amputate a man’s leg and he can still feel it tickling. Tell me, ma’am, when your little girl is on the slab, where will it tickle you?”

I sat down last weekend to re watch Jonathan Demme’s The Silence of the Lambs, wondering what there was to say about this movie that hasn’t already been better said a thousand times before. For the purposes of this Spotlight, I decided to just fast-forward to the Anthony Hopkins scenes, as even though this is a movie that I enjoy, I’ve seen it at least six times before. But the fact that I’d already seen the movie so many times before was exactly why, when the realization hit me, I was shocked – to the point where I thought I was losing my mind. But, a quick check of the Internet confirmed it. Read the rest of this entry

Bridesmaids

I have never been a bridesmaid.  Probably not shocking based on my gender, appearance, and lack of ovaries.  I have, however, been in many wedding parties. Not only that, but I’ve been the best man in at least six weddings (the last being that of  Joseph “Mumbles” Wilhelm).  Why you ask?  Because I am literally the best man there is…for the job.  And even then I still, always, screw up some aspect of my responsibilities.   Now, imagine you put an insecure, self absorbed, lady-child in charge of everything.  Would anything go right? Read the rest of this entry

Harvest

With the coming of Hollywood Summer movie season, it becomes even easier than usual to forget about all the other, smaller, “alternate programming” selections to be found in smaller theatres around town. In past years, we’ve had such personal favorites as Junebug, Waitress, and Away We Go all dropping at around this time of year. Curiously, and perhaps not coincidentally, all the aforementioned movies are of the just-folksy, small-town, family themed comedy/drama variety – either I’m itching to take a break, any kind of break, from my regular life this time of year, or maybe I just need a break from all the explosions and shouting on the screens next door.

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Devil’s DVD Advocacy: The Mechanic

Continuing with the never-ending trend of hollywood remakes comes The Mechanic. In this revised version of the 1972 film, Jason Statham steps into Charles Bronson’s shoes. With Ben Foster starring in Jan-Michael Vincent’s role.

While I haven’t seen the original, it only takes one viewing of the trailer to know what a mechanic is. A metaphor for one who fixes thing and in this case, a hitman.

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Actor Spotlight: The Bounty

The Bounty is a retelling of the true story of a mutiny on a British ship during the late 18th century. Anthony Hopkins stars as Lieutenant William Bligh. When we first meet him he is retelling the story of his failed mission to a board of British Admirals. He must explain himself and his actions that lead to his losing his ship on the high seas. The Bounty was a warship on a mission for the British Navy. It was supposed to sail to Tahiti in the South Pacific and then on to the Caribbean. After reaching Tahiti and setting sail for the West Indies the ship encounters trouble from the sea and within. The Bounty never makes it to the Caribbean. After a month at sea trying to get around the capes of Africa, the ship turns back around and returns to Tahiti. There the crew falls in love with island living and the beautiful women. After months of island living Captain Bligh orders the ship to set sail for home. Instead, the crew already tired of the hardships of sea living while serving under Bligh and his loyal officers stage a mutiny with most of the crew heading back to Tahiti and the other half set adrift at sea. Anthony Hopkins leads a great cast as Captain Bligh. His Bligh is a stern and overbearing sort of Captain. He’s not well liked by the crew or anyone else for that matter. His hard ways alienate him from most of his men. Mel Gibson plays Master’s Mate (First Lieutenant) Fletcher Christian who leads the mutiny after falling in love with a Tahitian island princess.

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Thor

“I still don’t think you’re the god of thunder… but you ought to be”

Marvel Studios (the movie branch of the comic publisher) struck gold with Iron Man – a movie whose success they’ve been trying to replicate ever since. Does Thor once again capture lightning in a bottle, or is the thunder-god’s movie just a passing drizzle? Read the rest of this entry

Hobo With a Shotgun

 It shouldn’t matter where ideas come from; they are free-floating, shimmering, skittering by like the iridescent eye-worms you see when you close your eyelids too tightly. And they are just as hard to hold onto. So who cares that Hobo With a Shotgun is another in a line of trailer-spoof fodder made whole? Its genesis should not be an immediate indictment against it; let the film speak for itself. (And, for those conspiracy theorists out there, who’s to say that all movies aren’t initially made based on previews and trailers and adjusted and molded based on audience/internet reaction?)

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Devil’s DVD Advocacy: No Strings Attached

I have come to terms that I seem to have reviewed more so-called “chick flicks” than almost everyone on this here blog. I guess being in a marriage under 2 years does that. Anyways…..onto the newest chick flick rom-com No Strings Attached.

No Strings Attached has a simple premise. Can two people have sex and not develop feelings for each other? Will it be the girl who succumbs to feelings? Will it be the guy? Both?

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Devil’s DVD Advocacy: I Saw The Devil

I Saw The Devil is a Korean horror movie that follows one man’s need for revenge to its ultimate consequence. Min-Sik Choi from Oldboy stars as a true monster of a human being. He’s a serial killer that makes Hannibal Lecter look like Charlie Brown. He murders with delight and takes enjoyment in tormenting his victims and the police pursuing him. He doesn’t hide his identity and doesn’t care. Byung-hun Lee (Storm Shadow in G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra and The Bad from The Good, The Bad, The Weird) plays a Korean Secret Service agent whose wife is one of the victims of the serial killer. Once he discovers who the murderer is, he becomes obsessed with tormenting and chasing a human demon in one of the best cat and mouse stories I’ve ever seen.

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Actor Spotlight: Audrey Rose

The first film in our Anthony Hopkins spotlight is the 1977 film Audrey Rose, which is the story of one man’s search to find the reincarnated form of his daughter.  When a couple and their 11 year old daughter begin experiencing some strange happenings, they are confronted with some potentially disturbing news.  Once Hopkins enters the picture, he begins proposing some outrageous notions that Marsha Mason’s Janice and John Beck’s Bill are simply not ready for. Read the rest of this entry

Actor Spotlight: Sir Anthony Hopkins

Great Odin’s Raven, May is upon us and thus a new spotlight as well. With Thor set to hit theaters, we decided to focus on the man responsible for bringing him into the world, Sir Anthony Hopkins. The spotlight begins with Audrey Rose, then The Bounty, followed by Silence of The Lambs, and rounded out with Proof. Check in weekly to see what we say, and tell us what you think.

Episode 69: Lebowski Fest

Mike and Rene made the pilgrimage out to Columbus, Ohio to see what Lebowski Fest had to offer.  See what they and others had to say after two days of Lebowski fans, bowling, and what-have-you.  An episode so big even Bunny Lebowski would flinch at its girth.

Give us a listen, because even if you don’t like us well, you know, that’s just, like, your opinion, man.

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13 Assassins

13 Assassins is director Takashi Miike’s latest movie from Japan. It’s quite a refreshing movie from him. Miike (Audition, Ichi The Killer) is known for bizarre Japanese movies filled with buckets of gore and blood-spraying stumps. Not this time. I was pleasantly surprised by what has to be, for me at least, the best movie I’ve seen in 2011.

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Devil’s DVD Disappointment: Green Hornet

Green Hornet, written by the titular character himself Seth Rogen and partner Evan Goldberg, tells the story of socialite Britt Reid and his friend Kato, and their secret war on crime. After a drunken encounter with a group of muggers, the liquid courage quickly becomes something resembling real courage, and the Green Hornet is born. Read the rest of this entry