Saturday, July 30, 2011
Oh my gosh! I've nearly watched and reviewed 100 good movies since December 2010. Wow. I'm going to have to be careful. 100 should be special, and I shouldn't waste it. I'll have to think about that awhile.
Anyway, I thought for a moment about going to see The Smurfs. I just don't think I can do it. It might give me nightmares...their flat, soulless eyes...it's too horrible to contemplate.
Oh god. Did you watch it? I have to go see it, because it's going to be so ghastly. But I really don't want to.
Enough about the damn Smurfs already. I stayed home and watched Source Code. I enjoyed it. It's directed by Duncan Jones, who directed Moon, which was also very good. There's a bunch of twists and turns, it's very suspenseful, and the effects aren't awful. Spoiler alert! Jake Gyllenhall is in it. He's not so bad. I pay-per-viewed it.
Were you looking for a movie that features a partially clad Carol Channing, an acid-dropping Jackie Gleason, or a levitating screw with Groucho Marx's head sitting on top of it? Of course not. No one was. Well, here it is regardless. Do we have a clip? We do? It's kind of early for a clip. I generally complain a lot more before a clip appears. Strange how that always seems to happen. From what I can tell, this clip involves some young hippie-types turning on some older establishment squares or some such nonsense, when every kind of counter-culture cliche is paraded about, and it all seems very familiar in an It's A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad, World kind of way, and you get the feeling that some very important person who was involved in the making of this movie didn't understand it in a very profound manner, and they knew they had a problem and the only way they could fix it was throwing more semi-famous actors on the screen that the young hippie-types who would go see this movie wouldn't care about anyway.
Hmm, that's odd. Someone replaced a tedious scene from Skidoo with a classic one from Duck Soup. I'm outraged and thankful. You should watch that instead because Groucho Marx is actually funny in it, while he most definitely is not in Skidoo. Here's a trailer. I watched this movie on Showtime and you shouldn't unless you are a big Nilsson fan or you want to see Joker, Penguin and Riddler from the campy Batman TV show doing non-Batman related things, but no one wants to see that, either.
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Let's jump right into this, shall we, because I'm not going to pussyfoot around. I am going out on a limb here, but I'm going to proclaim that Birdemic: Shock And Terror is the Worst Film Ever Made.
I said it. It's worse than Manos: The Hands Of Fate. It's worse than Beast Of Yucca Flats. It's worse than You've Got Mail. Amateurish on every level; from the wooden acting, the haphazard editing, the clunky camerawork, the poorly focused cinematography, the lack of any discernible art direction, the inconsistent sound levels, the poor pacing, the nonsensical script, the terrible make-up, and the worst special effects ever slapped on-screen, every single shot in Birdemic: Shock And Terror is a complete disaster.
Plot: Boy techie awkwardly meets girl model, he earns a million dollars, then oddly flat computer generated eagles and/or vultures attack in an 'homage' to Alfred Hitchcock who is spinning in his grave like a Tilt-A-Whirl.
Do we have a clip? Swell. In this scene, enthusiastic extras get some good news.
Now, you're probably thinking to yourself, "That had to have been doctored to seem much worse than it is.". Nope. That's the way it appears in the film.
After what is the ickiest love scene on the ickiest bedspread in the ickiest hotel room ever; where the actors have dirty feet, no chemistry, and seem to be outright disgusted by one another, the birds finally attack. Here's a clip:
Yep. That's a thing, and it happened. With coat hangers.
I implore you to see this film. It's now playing on Netflix.
Here's the trailer:
Oh. My. God. That was even worse than the movie.
Monday, July 25, 2011
A dead woman recounts the story of her death in this whodunit while we keep abruptly cutting back to a watery shot of her corpse in a morgue. This jumbled mess features Bela Lugosi playing Bela Lugosi, secret passages, a blue face peering through curtains, a box with a head in it, awkward comic relief, and stagey actors who stumble through their lines. It's awful. I watched it on Youtube, and you can watch it below, but do you need to watch another bad Bela Lugosi movie?
Sunday, July 24, 2011
I made a promise to myself. It's a wacky promise. I try very hard to stay true to that promise, but sometimes I fail. And I feel I've failed. I said several months ago that I would watch as many terrible movies as I can, and that I would watch them all the way through no matter how awful. Sadly, technology did not allow me to stay true to my promise. I began to watch "The Monster Walks" on Youtube, and although it was only an hour long, it had taken me a few days to claw through it, pausing the stream in 15 minute intervals and taking a break because of the absolute hideousness of the movie. There was a storm, and when I returned to finish it, I had to start the movie over from the beginning. I do not have the mental or physical strength to watch "The Monster Walks" again. I just can't do it, and there's absolutely nothing you can say to convince me otherwise. The film is your standard creaky "old dark house" tale; someone's dead, there's a reading of the will, the actors sleepwalk through their lines, characters walk from room to room, someone says "That's because of the corpse in the house!", and of course, there's a chimp confined in a cage in the basement. Even though I watched up to the 38 minute mark, there were no monsters whatsoever and I often had the uncontrollable urge to slowly saw off my own head out of sheer boredom, you know, just to liven things up a bit. Well, there was a scene where an unusually hairy arm was jutting out of a wall for a moment, but it could be argued that that only constitutes one-eighth of a monster at best and it certainly wasn't walking. So please accept my sincere apology for not finishing this film, and I'll try not to let it happen again.
Sorry, there doesn't seem to be a trailer available, and there's no way I'm embedding the movie here. If you want to watch it, that's your decision to make. I can't be held responsible if you catch an incurable case of ennui, so don't say you weren't warned.
Thursday, July 21, 2011
Astronauts travel aboard an elaborately appointed drawing of a spaceship to a matte-painting of the moon. As they explore the lunar surface, which consists of walking through sets in front of more matte-paintings of the moon, they discover an extremely unlikely cave, take off their helmets and spacesuits in the extremely unlikely moon air, and are then attacked by a gigantic googly-eyed spider dangling from a string. Then someone shoots this moon spider with a gun that sounds suspiciously like a gun one might hear on Gunsmoke. Suddenly, a foreboding cat-woman shadow appears a couple of times, then the cat-women perform a ritual-like dance.
Sorry, no clip.
It's just as well, because it's terrible. There's some telepathy I guess because it's apparently in the script, and a completely meh astronaut love triangle which could have been nipped in the bud if the astronauts had brought enough women for everyone, and a couple of unconvincing cat-woman attacks. The whole movie is cruddy, and after a while I just stopped caring about the moon, or cat-women, or anything, really. I watched it on Youtube, and you can watch it below, but why bother?
While a chick with long fingernails kisses a dude, a maniacal guitar furiously plays (get used to the idea), then we see the credits and we get some Orson Welles shilling Paul Masson-esque narration, but things don't completely go south until a character says, "Well, it all started on the border a few days back..." and the movie gets all watery-wipe-y and the screenplay kicks into high gear. Is it too early for a clip? Heck no!
Sorry, that didn't have anything to do with this movie, but I hope you enjoyed it anyway. People walk a lot, there are too many wipes, there are too many random cutaways with backdrops, and a spider-woman dances for an uncomfortably long period of time using too much elbow until she's abruptly shot by a hypnotized homily-spouting infant-man in a bowler hat. And we have another clip!
Warning! Contains spoilers. Do not watch if you are offended by spider-women, elbow dances, frantic Spanish guitars, boob-clutching death scenes, or bowler hats. Actually, don't watch it at all. You should find something constructive to do with the 6 minutes you'll waste watching this.
So there are way too many WTF and face-palming moments to describe here, but if you watch this movie you'll see some suspect science, hear some of the worst dialogue ever written, and marvel at a gigantic spider with googly eyes dangling from a string. It's boring, completely dreadful, seems light-years longer than a 63 minute run-time, and makes no sense from beginning to end. I watched it on Youtube, and you can watch it below, but don't.
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Hysterical and overwrought women supposedly do stuff, look off into the distance wistfully, and men talk about junk in this sudsy whodunit. There's an "old dark house" moment, wind howls through the trees, and a bat the size of a mattress dangling from a string attacks someone in a graveyard during a dream sequence I think, but the images are watery and swirly because it's a dream, and it's extremely brief. Boring, tedious, filled with suspect science, and you often wonder if someone's going to say either "Zoinks!" or "Jinkies!". If you're looking for devils of any variety or bats in abundance, you should look elsewhere. I watched it on Youtube, and you should avoid it. If you just can't stop yourself, and you should learn to exercise some restraint in such matters, you can watch it below.
Monday, July 18, 2011
Grisly, shocking, offensive, and very entertaining; Hobo With A Shotgun is beautifully filmed in over-saturated Technicolor, has a funny tongue-in-cheek script, and high production values for an exploitation grindhouse-style film. Rutger Hauer is well cast, and sets new standards for the term "grizzled". I liked it. It's now showing on Pay-Per-View, and you can watch it at Youtube for $3.99. Here's a trailer:
The Incredibly Strange Creatures Who Stopped Living And Became Mixed Up Zombies: Terrible Movies #160
After we watch go-go girls dance and someone sings a song, we meet Jerry, who thinks he's a badass but drives a station wagon and frolics on the beach with his pompadoured pals. Jerry goes to the carnival, then he falls in love with a stumbling dancer and has his fortune told by a gypsy with a mole on her face. Then he's hypnotized because it's in the script, which causes him to occasionally stab people when he sees twirling umbrellas by the pool. Yep. That's the gist of it. Oh, did I mention this movie is a musical and there are very few zombies? I didn't? Hmm. Well, there you go. Boring and confusing, and it shouldn't be. It's supposed to have strippers (it doesn't really) and zombies (totally not zombies). Avoid unless you love the movie's title (which is a great title the movie could never live up to) and you love awkward and pointless showgirl dance routines. I watched it at Youtube. Here's a trailer:
Hey, that was pretty cool, and almost makes me want to watch the movie again. But I won't.
Sunday, July 17, 2011
Netflix has made the extremely unpopular decision to raise their prices to coerce their customers into not receiving DVDs in the mail. I'm cool with that. I'm 100% in favor of moving forward into a future of streaming any movie you want at any time. Sadly, that future has not arrived yet. So I've changed my Netflix plan to the streaming only option, and returned the Invasion Of The Neptune Men/Prince Of Space DVD although I haven't watched both movies. Netflix promptly shipped me Robot Monster. Clearly, something is amiss. However, that isn't going to stop me from watching it. Robot Monster is one of those mythic white whale movies, one I've heard about but never actually seen, and it usually sits near the top of many Worst Movies Ever lists. I realize I could easily have gone to one of those huge big box retailers and bought the DVD, but that would include going out into public among people and venturing into a big box retailer and that sounds an awful lot like effort. So let's watch it, shall we? It's going to be epic!
It all starts to go downhill with the opening credits. They've given credit to a bubble machine. Really. Here's a clip:
After some wooden acting, the child actors occasionally look into the camera, then take an unconvincing nap. For some reason, there's stock lightning, reptile wrestling, and nonsensical stop-motion animated dinosaur footage. Choppy editing and camera jostling ensues, then a guy in a gorilla suit wearing a poorly made papier-mache space helmet appears making hand gestures that don't sync up with the voice-over narration. Here's a clip:
It's oddly reminiscent of this:
In order to have a post-apocalyptic look, sets consist of a ravine, a cave, a dilapidated garage missing most of the walls even though a perfectly good house is just up the hill, and a wrinkled backdrop. Plot devices include an anti-biotic immunization serum that protects against death-rays and the common cold, a violin bow, and soldiering irons in close-up. Special effects include crappy super-imposition and confusing rocket ships dangling from strings, and if you look closely enough, you can see a guy obscured by smoke but illuminated by a sparkler hold a rocket-ship on a stick. It's at the 24:25 minute mark. No clip? Dammit! Well, trust me, it's awesome.
So, the guy in the gorilla suit tiptoes up and down a hill several times and no one knows why. There are many inexplicable cutaways, cast closeups, and fades. Again, no one knows why. Suddenly, the guy in a gorilla suit comes lumbering over a grass-covered hill in a slow-motion rampage and the blades of grass move hypnotically in the breeze, and it looks similar to the poetic cinematography that Terrence Malick might direct if Terrence Malick directed crappy movies. After more cruddy plot stuff happens, including a grimly WTF sort-of denouement, the movie ends with a cliched cop-out.
Overall, one of the very worst movies I've ever seen, and probably in the top ten. It's so crudely inept that it's almost avant-garde, like a nonsensical Dada-esque piece of performance art. Highly recommended if you like stuff that sucks. Here's the baffling trailer:
Friday, July 15, 2011
It's 1 a.m. SST (Stabford Standard Time) and I'm very tired, but I wanted to say thanks to the Large Association Of Movie Blogs for mentioning my blog on their blog. It's very much appreciated. When you sit in the dark watching movies few people in their right minds would want to watch and then type in the dark in front of a glowing screen, you wonder if you're just shouting in a dark and empty room. It's great to be a part of a larger community of shouting people sitting in the dark in front of glowing screens. Together, we are a chorus.
Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Another high quality BBC documentary, this time focusing on the legendary independent record shop/label. Features vintage concert footage, vintage and modern interviews, and lots of music from The Normal, Stiff Little Fingers, Scritti Politti, Cabaret Voltaire, Pere Ubu, Robert Wyatt, The Fall, The Smiths, Pulp, and The Strokes. I watched it at USAToday's Pop Candy, and you can watch it below.
The Bechdel Test is a way to assess the presence of active female characters in film through the following criteria: the movie has to have at least two women in it who talk to each other about something besides a man. This test is a fairly damning judgment of film in that many movies fail, and some barely pass. Which leads me to Sucker Punch, a videogame/music video/action film with a largely female cast marketed to young males who don't go to the movies anymore. Plot: Barely characterized, under-dressed imprisoned females living under constant threats of murder and rape become "hookers with hearts of gold" and try to survive by ripping off The Matrix and Call Of Duty while uninteresting rock and roll covers blare and serve as narrative. Was it entertaining? Yes, much like a shiny object momentarily grabs your attention. Was it thought provoking? Again, yes, but probably not in the way the film-makers intended. Is this some sort of misguided feminist statement? Maybe, but a fairly dodgy one. Could this be some sort of camp "women in prison" cult classic sometime in the future? Doubtful, considering how derivative it is. This movie raises a lot of questions, and may be argued about for some time. It has its moments, but the cons outweigh the pros. I watched it on Pay-Per-View. Here's a trailer:
Monday, July 11, 2011
Plot: People roller-skate in short-shorts to disco. That's it. Honestly, the screenplay couldn't have been longer than 7 pages, and two of the pages just had "Boooogie" scrawled on it in lip-gloss. Do we have a clip? We do! Awesome!
Warning: The following clip is not suitable to anyone who has a Cher-related allergy or viewers who would find people humping on a dumpster objectionable. In roller-skates.
Wow. Yeah, that was a thing, and it happened.
So, I watched it on Netflix Instant Streaming, and for the life of me I don't know why.
A guy in a suit that looks suspiciously like Godzilla attacks a miniaturized, glass shot, matte-painting-ed Korea. So, for what seems like an eternity, space music plays while the camera pans through space, and finally, a crudely painted portrait of the Earth comes into view. Then, a car drives through a matte-painting of downtown futuristic space Korea carrying a couple of newlyweds who are then attacked by a sparkly light that makes them itchy because it's in the script, I guess. Well, space harp music plays, and rocket-ships dangle from strings, and someone doesn't understand plate tectonics, and that painting of the Earth shows up again, and smoke bombs stand-in for atomic explosions, and a Matchbox toy car bursts into flames as it plummets off a cliff, but it doesn't matter. All that really matters is that Yongary The Monster From the Deep appears at last from a fissure, and he just happens to be named that like it's common knowledge, and when he breathes fire on some tanks you can see the propellant nozzle in his mouth and it just makes you sad. I watched it on Netflix Instant Streaming. Here's a trailer. It's in German.
Appalachian eccentrics chase Bigfoot in this less-than-sympathetic documentary. Edited to exploit the down-on-their-luck Sasquatch-obsessed characters; the film seems to meander, lackadaisically tosses in a moment of tension at the 3/4 mark, then suddenly ends. I hope these guys can conquer their demons. Looking for a film where men cry, yell into the woods, and do Yeti stuff on the Internet? This movie's for you. Looking for Bigfoot? Look elsewhere. I watched it on Netflix Instant Streaming. Here's a trailer that concisely describes the real issues at the heart of the film; friendship, second chances, and lack of opportunity in Appalachia.
A pompous self-made millionaire travels America with a juicer and the crazy idea that fruits and vegetables are good for you, meets incredulous people who've never heard of a carrot, and we have to watch. While his mantra of increasing one's intake of fruits and vegetables is important, and one that millions of Americans desperately need, the entire film comes off as an overbearing and pretentious infomercial for juice machines. The second half of the film is quite interesting, when we meet a 400 pound truck driver with an auto-immune disease who takes up the film-maker's smoothie challenge, but the first half of the film features lots and lots of director/writer/cinematographer Joe Cross and his veggie-centric computer animations. It's inspiring to see Joe help someone, it would be better if we saw less of Joe. Have a nice fruit salad instead. I watched it on Netflix Instant Streaming.
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
An average documentary about the history of burlesque. Vintage photographs and modern interviews are presented at a breakneck speed, and you often wonder exactly who is being interviewed; well, except Alan Alda, we know who he is. You'll see Blaze Starr, April March, Tempest Storm and Lili St. Cyr, and you'll hear their fascinating and sometimes lurid stories. I watched it on Netflix instead of sitting amongst the masses on a blanket in the middle of a park while fireworks explode overhead because that ain't my scene, man. Here's a trailer:
Sunday, July 3, 2011
Honestly, I haven't finished watching this film. I think we're at the half-way point. I can't tell any more. I want to run outside, dig a hole, and bury my own head to make this movie stop. From what I can tell, Jennifer Aniston plays Jennifer Aniston and Adam Sandler plays Adam Sandler in a combination platter of Romantic Comedy Plot #3 and I Love Lucy Plot #1 and everyone gets hit in the nuts or someone talks about poop.
And. It. Just. Keeps. Happening.
I'm watching it on Pay-Per-View and I want my money back.
For God's sake, let's just skip the trailer, OK? Thanks.
A car wash employee with a fondness for bell-bottoms purchases a customized van that's equipped with an 8-track, CB Radio and a toaster, then drives it around while soft country-tinged rock plays and gets into juvenile high-jinks. That's pretty much it. The cinematography constantly reminds you what an orange and yellow nightmare the 70's were. This film is strictly for van enthusiasts, people who are overly fond of the words turkey and dyn-o-mite, odd voyeurs who dig watching people drink Asti-Spumanti out of the jug, fans of fake fur covered vehicular waterbeds, folks who like to see the camera in every reflective surface, films that have been heavily and clumsily edited for content rendering it surprisingly chaste, or movie-goers who dislike scripts where words that aren't the word "van" seem to get in the way of their van ogling. How many times would you like to hear the hit single "Chevy Van"? 400 times? 500 times? You will. Nonsensical and laugh-free. I watched it on Netflix and will regret it the rest of my life. Here's a 25 second van-centric trailer that sums the entire film up:
Friday, July 1, 2011
A toy rocketship dangling from a string lands in Japan and vaporizes soldiers leaving only their helmets because it's in the script. Then a caped superhero saves the day, sort of, over and over. There are phony Silly Putty beak noses, phony facial hair, antennas, impossible laser cannons, and a humongous hero-trapping light-up colander. People in outlandish costumes run and jump while things explode, and curiously, there's a lot more fog in space than you would reasonably expect. I couldn't make heads or tails out of the plot, so if someone has a clue what I just watched, please let me know. I watched it on the Dark Sky Films DVD Drive-In Double Feature that pairs this movie with Invasion Of The Neptune Men, some trailers and an intermission.
Here's a trailer:
Hey, that doesn't seem to be a trailer but a random chunk of movie. Oh well, you get the gist.