An avid movie collector reviews movies, games, and TV shows for the common man, among other things. Spoiler Free

Friday, October 31, 2003

Dean's Sum-Up and thoughts on this week's BUZZBIN. (Check the link on the right for your own look)

1. Alien vs. Predator - This is still happening! Can't you feel it coming?!

2. Spiderman 2 - The budget may make it the most expensive movie ever, and with Dr. Octopus as the villian it should make it happen. Alfred Molina has been cast as the evil octangaled (I created this word, future use requires my permission) Doctor, which wasn't what I always imaginged (DeVito maybe) but should be a good casting call.

3. The Passion of Christ - I find it strange that the assistant director and star were both struck by lightning (the assisant director was actually struck twice) so maybe God has jumped in with His opinion. Should be an interesting movie, but I think the call to have it be in Latin was a bit of overkill.

4. The Greatest American Hero - A remake based on the funky TV show of a man who found a suit of superpowers left by aliens. The humor was that he couldn't really control the powers, like when he flies he is awkward and has to crash land. I was glad to see Owen Wilson sign on as the star which hopefully will break his streak of suck.

The rest were a bunch of run of the mill things, like A Love Bug remake where he joins NASCAR, or mindless sequels from Miss Congeniality, Shrek, and Bridget Jones' Diary.

Thursday, October 30, 2003

Narc Movie Review

I love this movie for two reasons, it’s the darkest cop drama I have ever seen, and Ray Liotta is so freaking intimidating I have ruined two pairs of pants because of this movie. The acting is great, from every cheap hood to Jason Patric (Of Speed 2 fame, kidding he was in The Lost Boys too) and Liotta made it worth owning for me, should be enough to rent it for all of you. The story was good, and the gritty filmmaking enhances everything, I was expecting to see some inconsistencies in the direction because the movie was shuffled around in production and had more than one director. The reason being was that the producers didn’t want to release a film with Jason Patric as a lead (despite him being perfect for the part), so the money and all just never really came together right until Tom Cruise came in and saved the day (Note his production credit). This movie ruled because it lacked all the filler and random gratuitous scenes that populate the police movies of today (See Bad Boys 2 for definition of Gratuitous) this movie was just straight good until the end. Watch it once for me.

Angel Season 3 Review

The show continues to grow on me, and shows no signs of slowing down. Angel is even more dynamic now than last season, and the storyline (like Buffy) is more season long and developed than before. Although, I do miss some of the variety that you had with the less connected episodes of the first two seasons, the payoffs are greater with a continued story. The characters that you love have gotten more time, namely the Host, who is one of the more enjoyable characters from either show. Also, I think I am noticing more advancement in the special effects and fight choreography, although I had mixed feelings about the slow motion stuff they started using at the end of the season. The show is great, and if you don’t watch it you should start up soon, if not it’s your loss and I hate you.

Tuesday, October 28, 2003

I'm cleaning up my site a bit, for some reason most of the pictures from IMDB no longer work. Check back for new pics from time to time.

Monday, October 27, 2003

Supporting Actress of the Week

Fairuza Balk

Attractive yet scary, Fairuza Balk is the best freaky girl available. She has been typecast in many ways, but she does it so well I can understand. To her credit she played other characters well, but most of them were depraved in some way, like a prostitute or a groupie. I enjoy her myself (Partly because of a striking resemblence to my old friend Melanie), all the way back to when she was in the scariest movie ever, Return to Oz. For those of you who forgot she was Dorothy, she is most known for her parts in The Craft, The Waterboy, and American History X. Other than these movies she shone in Things to Do in Denver When Your Dead, Almost Famous, and Personal Velocity. I think she was the best in The Waterboy as a goofier rendition of her witch role from the Craft. She has only voice work to show off for the next year, mostly from Video Games (GTA: Vice City, Lords of Everquest), I'm hoping that she'll have something good on the horizon for us.

Video Game Reviews

Buffy: Chaos Bleeds for PS2
A fun action based game, with a bit of trouble on its puzzles and guidance. For you Buffy fans out there this is a must, it has tons of unlockable videos and interviews with the cast, and the game plays out like an episode with all the action and humor intact. For those of you who don’t care much for Buffy it is still a good action title you just won’t enjoy the unlockables. The multiplayer games are pretty lousy, but this type of game doesn’t usually make for a good multiplayer unless it is co-op playing which sadly this does not have. The graphics are decent, it may look prettier on XBOX but it really doesn’t matter too much. The fighting system is probably the best feature of the game, since it doesn’t require the repetitive button mashing that other games have (Hunter the Reckoning Wayward) but has multiple combos which vary for each character and various weapons which have their own combo strings. I haven’t beat it yet but it is the first in awhile that made me actually want to. Plus, the last unlockable video is the outtakes from the voice recording which should be fun.

The Simpsons Hit and Run for Gamecube
Definitely the best Simpsons game ever. However, I got bored before too long. It was quite the blend of Grand Theft Auto with the Simpsons universe, but many of the things that I loved about GTA are absent from this title, and not enough of what I love from the Simpsons is present. In GTA driving around was fun enough, and I’m sad to say that mad rampaging could entertain endlessly. In the Simpsons game, driving is boring and the Simpsons humor was good but not enough for me to choose it over just watching the show. The world wasn’t as interactive as it could have been so the only things to do are the missions, which quite immediately became desperately hard and had to be replayed over and over before they could be beaten. I think you should rent this one, and rock it out for a few hours, but this one will not keep you entertained enough to purchase it.

These games mark the end of our venture with Gamefly.com. Gamefly was a beautiful dream that doesn’t work for us out here on the east coast. Since, pretty much every mail-order rental service for games is CA based it takes 4-5 days for a game to show up. Therefore, the wait between games is a week and a half to two weeks. Hardly worthwhile for a monthly service. However, the dream is too beautiful to deny and me and George have found another business that is closer to try out. More game reviews on the way.

The last four are based on one level demos that I steal from EBGames. Therefore, I may have an incomplete view of the game, however demos usually put their best foot forward. If the demo sucks, 98% of the time the game does too.

Kill Switch for PS2
I liked this game, and I played the demo level about 15 times. The game premise is basically realistic combat fighting with an emphasis on hiding and shooting, instead of Rambo fighting (My Fav) or stealth fighting (Socom, Tom Clancy Games). So, most of the combat is taking nice positions and trying to out flank your opponent by moving between cover points. The controls, gameplay, and graphics were all good; my only complaint was that shooting on the run was difficult. You’ll find (Esp in my SOCOM review below) that I am big on easyish aiming. But, in light of the rest of the game I will forgive this, esp since you really should be taking shots from cover in most circumstances. I will definitely rent this game when released with an interest to buy if it rules.

Socom 2 for PS2
Now its time for my aiming rant. I used to shoot guns in tournaments, they aren’t that hard to aim, and in real life I can target and deliver the first bullet in about 2 seconds on a close target and if it is a distanced shot about 3-4. With a full automatic gun I could shoot someone four times before my video game partner gets its partner anywhere near the crosshairs. This game has some of the worst aiming in existence. To aim you must use both Analog sticks, must be completely still, and than maybe you will be able to take a shot. What they add for realism is a joke. The crosshairs jump all over because your arms are tired and you are breathing, in real life there would be very little of this problem mostly on taking extremely long-range shots. In this game you are so weak you can’t hold steady on a building let alone a man walking down the street. Now let’s assume that you took the twenty minutes to line up the shot and actually took it, unless you pulled a head shot SURPRISE your enemy is still alive and is running after you. Since, it takes you twenty minutes to aim, he will be a problem. So, after the third heart shot that didn’t kill or even disable my enemy I was ready to quit, (Note: Head Shots are impossible with a waivering crosshair) so I went Rambo until one of my partners got in my way and I shot him. The rest of the team got upset and killed me, THE END. Don’t buy this game when there are other options, maybe if you play online with people, otherwise a piece of beautiful garbage that plays awful.
*Also note that I have played Socom 1, so if you like the series don’t send me a “You know nothing hack” e-mail, the game sucks, lie to yourself if you want but leave me out of it.

XIII for PS2
This game is a first person shooter type that plays out like a comic book. I liked the visual style of the game, and the comic elements were cool. Like when I threw a knife into this guy’s throat it quick flashed three comic like boxes animating his head whipping back and him groaning. The soundtrack is this excellent funk mix that doesn’t get old (although I played the game only a few times, although I listened to the whole soundtrack on CD and its good), and the gameplay was akin to Bond like action. I will rent this one eventually, you should too.

Gladius for PS2
This game sucked so bad I laughed for about 10 minutes I was so shocked this got made. It was not quite an RPG and had no interesting elements of strategy, story, or action. I can’t think of anything good to say, and the bad couldn’t be covered in a short manner. This game has no value, avoid it and tell others to steer clear.

Bedazzled Movie Review

I’m a fan on Harold Ramis (Analyze This, Caddyshack, Groundhog Day, Multiplicity, National Lampoon’s Vacation, Stripes), and most of his comedies are very satisfying to me, in a guilty goofy pleasure kind of way. Bedazzled is the story of a pathetic man who is a total loser, after being turned down by the woman he loves he mutters that he would do anything for her to be a part of his life. In comes the devil, and Brendan Fraser has 7 wishes to enjoy before he forfeits his soul. The shame of his wishes is that the devil interprets each one in such a way that it isn’t enjoyable, for instance – His first wish is that he be rich and powerful and married to the girl he likes, so she makes him a Spanish Drug Lord married to a wife who hates him and cheats on him. I really enjoy Brendan Fraser, he’s one of my favorite “everyman” actors, and in this movie he is really funny in the multiple roles he plays. The other actors also flourish in the multiple roles most notably Orlando Jones, Frances O’Connor, and Elizabeth Hurley who brilliantly plays the devil. It’s a feel good movie, which I am a sucker for, and although I might not dig the theology of it the humor is solid. I am afraid however that they reference my birthday as the day that the Devil began business, I watched the commentary hoping for explanation but maybe my date of birth is truly evil (which may explain a few things).

Sunday, October 26, 2003

Buffy Season 5 Review

Season 5 is a return to glory for the series. They cleaned up the crap that had killed them in season 4 namely making the boring lesbian an interesting character who no longer annoys you to the bone. The various cast members were starting to get some more equal screen time and it wasn’t the Buffy and Boyfriend show anymore. They also added a sister to the program which at first turned me off, but they were tasteful and used her properly and wisely. The show had its bouts with depression (which I hear is what describes the next two seasons) so many episodes just kill your mood and are not as enjoyable. At this point it is official, Buffy herself is boring. She continues to have the same personal dilemma over and over, “I didn’t ask to be the slayer, why can’t I be normal?” was the mantra of every season up until now. And now its “I’m the Slayer, you can’t possibly understand my pain! Being a Slayer means I have to be pissed off and moody all the time.” Other than Buffy, this season was well crafted, there were some clever twists and moments and the characters were all improved and cleaned up. Oh, and Willow is a bad@ss witch now, be ready for some floating terror with all black pupils and deep throated Latin.

28 Days Later Review

Not as much a horror movie as I would have expected, but good nonetheless. Sadly, not enough for me to buy it, which makes me glad I rented it first. The second half of the movie detracts from the great zombie infested world thing that I loved so much from the likes of Dawn of the Dead, but this movie did for a while place me back into pondering mode, where I dream up schemes and methods on how I would survive and flourish in the Apocalypse of zombie death. The camera work was all very good, and the acting was believable which is usually all you can ask from a horror movie. I did like this one sequence at the end, which I will not ruin for you, but it was a nice spin on the zombie thing that I haven’t seen before. A definite renter, and for some of you a delightful purchase.

They Review

Wes Craven returns with another movie about sleep trouble. This time Freddy Kruger stayed home and the movie focuses on a handful of young adults who are having recurring trouble with Night Terrors which they had when they were young. The horror elements were well played even keeping within the PG-13 rating. The acting was decent from new-comer Laura Regan, Ethan Embry (Can’t Hardly Wait, Dragnet), and Mark Blucas (Buffy: The Vampire Slayer). I personally enjoyed the special effects used to create the creatures, which are quite the gangly demon things. A good horror movie, light on the blood, and thick in the atmosphere.

Personally, I want to congratulate the movie industry for these new horror movies that are scoring the PG-13’s. I had grown entirely weary of the non-scary bloodfests that were crowding the theatres for many years, and this new trend of developing an atmosphere of horror and playing with the audience’s psyche is quite refreshing and enjoyable. I think much of it comes from the Japanese take on horror which was so clearly shown in The Ring which was a straight remake of a Japanese horror hit. I hope this continues and it should because Horror movies with a lighter rating can get more in revenue since anyone older than 13 can buy a ticket, and you can’t tell me that The Ring was inferior because it didn’t get an R rating. Blood, nudity, and language are cheap filler for a horror movie, give me a mind trip and I’ll be happy.

Full Metal Jacket Review

This movie is hailed by many as the most realistic portrayal of the Vietnam War, most importantly by those who were veterans of the war. This movie is split in half, the first half being a story of these two soldiers (Matthew Modine, Vincent D’Onofrio) as they go through basic training with a hellish Drill Instructor (R. Lee Ermey, see last week’s Supporting Actor), and the second half being the story of one of those soldier’s (Modine) first time in the field. This movie is disturbing at points and makes war look like all kinds of hell, but it isn’t going for shock value, you can see everything as a true portrayal of how it was. You never think to yourself, “This is fake, people didn’t do that”. Stanley Kubrick is known for his grim portrayal of humanity, and the brilliance of how he does it is that he shows it like it is instead of heightening it to dramatize the truth. A nice comparison would be Oliver Stone, he always takes it to the next level and says “this is where we are heading” or “this exists in some way inside of all of us”, but Kubrick says “This is what we are, this is what we do”. I find that Kubrick is probably the best director at catching the darkness present in humanity, just watch Dr. Strangelove, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Clockwork Orange, A.I. (which would have been so much more if Spielberg didn’t clean it up and add the happy ending), and this movie to catch the full effect of his prowess. Everyone should see this movie at some point, maybe not so much for the movie, because I feel that I get the best impression of many elements of the Vietnam war from this one, versus the drugged out Apocalypse Now, the political Born on the Fourth of July, the mixed-bag Platoon, and the blissfully retarded view from Forrest Gump.

Friday, October 24, 2003

Predator 2 Review

I love sci-fi. I’m not one of those guys who live for the next one to arrive but a good Sci-Fi really hits the spot once and awhile. Most of my favorites are the ones that blend genres like Predator 2 with Danny Glover. This movie is half Sci-Fi and half police action. You really get into the whole cop drama for the first half of the movie as they are dealing with a drug war and some mysterious killings of the same drug lords by some kind of “New Player” aka Predator. Then you slide right into the epic battle between Glover and the ultimate intergalactic hunter. It’s just great action, and the Predator is one of the coolest villains in the history of Sci-Fi. I am extremely excited about the Predator vs. Alien movie that is in production, because they can do no wrong. It could be a two hour dance number with the two space villains and I would buy it. If they actually do find a way to screw it up I will die. Anyway, here’s a list of my favorite Alien Villains in Sci-Fi.

Top Ten Alien Villains
1. Predator – The ultimate killing machine, but only battles other warriors.
2. Alien – I am referring to the Aliens from the movie of the same name.
3. Nemesis Enforcer – The mighty winged warrior for Golobulous, only Sgt. Slaughter could defeat him.
4. Martians – Choose your movie, Mars brings the best villains from space.
5. Cool “Pitch Black” Aliens – They were cool flying light-sensitive killers, a slight weakness to Vin Diesel.
6. Jabba the Hut – We can only imagine what a skinny and fit Jabba could do. “Meka Jabba Stompy”
7. The Borg – They are some creepy evil people, not as cool as Klingons but the Federation made peace with them.
8. Audrey II – The scariest plant that has ever existed, and note that singing voice.
9. “Signs” Aliens – You gotta love sneaky strategic aliens, and still being able to wreck house despite an allergy to water is pretty formidable.
10. General Zog and his minions from Superman 2 - They wrecked on Superman and took over the planet, booyah.

Thursday, October 23, 2003

Dean's Emulation of CJ's Blog

I liked CJ's Top Seven list of Female Cartoon Characters. I found myself thinking up my list and despite non-originality I should be able to share mine too. I will overlap twice but here is mine.

1. Rogue - The X-Men was a big part of my youth, and as a big Gambit fan I saw a lot of Rogue. Yeah, the accent rules, and she's cute when she's angry and throwing bad guys.

2. Jinx - She didn't have too big a part in the G.I.Joe cartoon, but she had the best actual figure so I loved her.

3. Baroness - Another G.I.Joe girl but she's bad, but she's undeniably cool.

4. Jessica Rabbit - Kathleen Turner voicing a mysterious cartoon lady, in my favorite Zemeckis film.

5. Sun Shang Xiang - You have to play Dynasty Warriors to know this one, and she's the best from the Wu family.
I wish the picture would show up but it doesn't
6. Lois Griffin - If she can put up with Peter she has to be amazing, and you have to love the nose.

7. Elise - A cartoon rendition of my girlfriend, plus she is the fastest character in SSX Tricky.

Top Ten Male Cartoon Characters that I want(ed) to be.

1. Sgt. Slaughter - The Ultimate Male, I only wish I was that intimidating.

2. Gambit - Sly, Mysterious, and awesome, everything I am not.

3. Roadblock - I only wish I could rhyme everything I said. "I don't need to see clear, to fracture your rear!"

4. Hulk Hogan - He was the king of the 80's, and who better to hang with than Andre the Giant and Superfly Jimmy Snucka.

5. Mr. T - The man rules in so many ways.

6. Space Ghost - Mostly because of Adult Swim, he's original cartoon sucks.

7. Harvey Birdman - On the same token as Space Ghost only he is cooler, and voices by Gary Cole (Boss in Office Space)

8. Donatello - Quarter-Staff, Intelligent, Ninja, I only wish.

9. Mentok the Mind Taker - Doesn't just read minds, takes them. Weeeeeeeeeoooooooo

10. Shaggy - That is the ultimate life, minus the dog. Although Animated Dogs are probably OK.

How to lose a Guy in 10 Days Review

I'm one of those guys who doesn't really love chick flicks, I admit it. In my collection, you will find several romantic comedies however, those which I do enjoy. And if people come over and sway the crowd to go the way of romance I have stacked the deck in my favor. However, tonight the vote went the way of How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days which I recently got for Julie and have successfully avoided for awhile, (My earlier Chicago review was a replacement viewing for How to...) I am glad that I had my friend Drew with me during the viewing, but I found the movie entertaining and will be glad to have it in my stacked deck. It's funny, and the Kate Hudson is not annoying as many female leads in these movies often are. The female lead is usually the deciding factor between decent and flaming crap, the male lead can further enhance the movie to the realm of good but he needs a good female star to make it happen. Matthew Macaughney was entertaining and likable, so this movie gets a rating of good, which as a romantic comedy is as high as you get. Since we are on the subject I have made a list of some of the movies I hold in my deck.

Top Ten Male-Friendly Chick Flicks
(Girls if you want to ease a new boyfriend in this list will help)
1. The Princess Bride - A classic with enough swordfighting and comedy to put any man at ease.
2. John Cusack Movies - Grosse Point Blank, Serendipity, Say Anything, High Fidelity are aimed to please both genders, Cusack is our savior.
3. Kissing a Fool - Jason Lee always makes us happy, and Mili Avital should be in more movies, she's good.
4. Fools Rush In - Matthew Perry when he isn't hooked on crack is funny, and Salma Hayek...nuff said.
5. How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days - Yeah, it made the list
6. Romeo and Juliet - Choose your edition, there is some fighting, and Shakespeare is great.
7. Forget Paris - Billy Crystal is hilarious, his other romantic movies are good too but this one is the best.
8. Ever After - Angelica Huston rules as the stepmother, but this movie also has Duncan from Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, "Don't Worry Tis Duncan"
9. Fried Green Tomatoes - This movie is really good, most men should be able to enjoy it.
10. Disney - Everyone can enjoy almost any Disney movie, and you ladies love them too.

Wednesday, October 22, 2003

I found a fun little site that compiles a bunch of Movie Trailers and Teasers, I'm adding a link for it. Make sure to check Resident Evil : Apocalypse, it's a very different kind of teaser.

Monday, October 20, 2003

If many of my pictures are missing it is IMDB's fault, not mine. I will see what I can do.
Supporting Actor of the Week
R. Lee Ermey

Inspired by his role in the Texas Chainsaw Massacre I decided to honor our favorite Drill Sergeant and freaky old man in Hollywood. He became a legend with his portrayal of the Drill Sergeant in Full Metal Jacket, whose opening rip into the cadets is a favorite MP3 for many people. Since that point, almost every Drill Sergeant is a poor imitation of how R. Lee Ermey played it in the Kubrick classic. Recently, Ermey has been taking quite a few horror movie roles, Willard and Texas Chain being his most recent, and I believe this is wise because the man scares the marrow of my bones. But, I found myself laughing hysterically at his comedic turn in Saving Silverman as the homicidal gay football coach who marries Jack Black. I’m excited about his sudden boost of popularity, and hopefully he’ll continue to entertain as he has before. God bless Ermey.

Texas Chainsaw Massacre Review

I saw the movie more interested in how they would adapt the original, which is what I will make the centerpiece of my little review here. The movie is a Hollywood adaptation of the original and they made little effort to maintain the gritty style and features that made the first one notorious. The original was trying to truly create a believable and horrid portrayal of this freakish country family, the goal of the movie was more to say “Isn’t this F@#^&$ up?” Therefore, scenes and characters were not built up for suspense or emotional value, just a shot of what it might have been like. This edition, takes the time and effort to get the most out of all the scary moments, extended chase sequences, suspenseful hiding scenes, freaky neighbors and police officers, all things absent from the classic version. The first one had gritty and disturbing down, but ultimately lacked any kind of plot or character development, which is what I expected to be added for this film and they delivered. The remake is far more entertaining, but compared to its father it is tame and run-of-the-mill. I was surprised at all the changes made but it is really what I expected, a commercial version of the original. For most of you, this remake will be far superior, but me I wanted to see their take on the dinner table scene from the original. And sadly, they opted out and chose another wet t-shirt chase with Jessica Biel. To each his own I guess.

Godfather 1 Review

What can I say that hasn’t been said about this movie series? I am ashamed that as a film lover it took me this long to finally sit down and watch them. I even owned them, and only because my roommate urged me did I finally break down and take them to work with me. I’m gonna keep it short and just give you my feelings about the movie. It is a beautifully filmed movie, and the mobster family was portrayed in an interesting light when compared to the many Mafia type movies that have been made. It opened better than the book, which opens with like two sex scenes after which I put the book down to never be revisited. The acting is excellent, especially from Brando, Pacino, Caan, and Duvall. Honestly, I like Brando better as the Don, and would have liked more of him but Pacino isn’t bad. It’s good, I liked the first half best and I’ll review the 2nd once I complete it.

Thursday, October 16, 2003

Hey Ya

I fell in love with Hey Ya by Outcast and quickly ran out and bought the CD. I have only listened to Andre 3000's half of the two-part CD but so far I am disappointed. There is not another "single" quality song on the cd. I'll tell you if Big Boi's half saves the album but ugh I am saddened. I'm glad I got it cheap.
Kill Bill Part 1 Review

The bloodiest thing ever, short of the ridiculous blood in Evil Dead 2. The anime section is great and the movie is really just some fleshed out bloody anime. For those of you unfamiliar to bloody anime there are two key factors; blood squirts out of everything no matter where the wound (As an EMT I know there is no artery there that can squirt), and blood trails (best used with bullet wounds, but with swords its the spray that hits the walls from sword whipping) I was glad to see more than just swords used and one character has a giant spiked ball on the end of a chain (I love this fighting style, check Jackie Chan in Shanghai Noon for some more). I agree with Quentin about splitting the movie in half, because the feel of the older movies was being maintained throughout, and the scenes that could have been cut would have made it a hollywood action movie, and I watched this for something different. Plus, I think the action was good, maybe cut down on the 10 minute stand-offs, but since (Spoiler Alert) she only handles half of her assailants in this movie to make it one movie would have all the battles cut down severely. (Spoiler Over) The acting was good, and I loved Sonny Chiba as the wise sword master. Uma Thurman held her own more than I thought, I was half expecting to be a little disappointed by her. There was some major dirt in this movie it is not for the squemish, but if you can handle it watch this movie.

Wednesday, October 15, 2003

This may be my last goofy picture related addition, but since my friend George resurrected it I thought I would put it up. Note: CJ is in the transformer suit.

The Italian Job

I skipped this movie in the theatre for two reasons, Mark Wahlberg, and my girlfriend saw it without me. A look at the cast alone would require a viewing (Jason Statham, Seth Green, Donald Sutherland, Mos Def, Edward Norton, Charlize Theron), and all of them were on the top of their game. (Actually, Norton didn't really want to be in the movie, and Wahlberg was kind of blah) The comedy involved was all well done mostly due to Seth Green and Mos Def, and the scene where Seth impersonates Jason Statham is hilarious and worth multiple viewings. The story came together believably, and they didn't try for any of the gay conventions of these kind of heist movies, namely the multiple surprise ending which almost never works. F. Gary Gray gets kudos for the direction, he fought for realism throughout the movie and it made it beautiful. He urged the actors to do all the driving so the chase scenes could have more than the wide shot of the car and then the extreme close-up of the driver, and almost all of the scenes were shot on location and not in the studio. A great ensemble movie that was far superior to Ocean's Eleven because of its humor and the possibility of multiple viewing pleasure. Recommended.

Monday, October 13, 2003

A new worst movie.

The other night I was blessed with the opportunity to watch Reindeer Games starring Ben Affleck, Charlize Theron, Dennis Farina, and Gary Sinese. This movie should never have moved beyond script stage, because it failed to make sense consistently. At one point an easy solution with no possible repercussions was available and not taken, this continued to happen, and then the "surprise" ending was total BS. And that is just the story and plot, I will not go into the inadequacies of Ben Affleck in this movie, Charlize Theron was adequate and only Dennis Farina was enjoyable. Some of you watched this movie to see Charlize naked (for shame), and other than this I can't see why someone would watch this movie. It may be added to the list of shame, which I listed below.

Top Five "A" Movies that get an "F"
("A" movies in terms of budget, also I made the list somewhat recent, and picked movies that had potential and failed)
1. Alien Resurrection
2. Mothman Prophecies
3. Reindeer Games
4. Queen of the Damned
5. Batman and Robin

This is off the top of my head I may expand it later.
I wanted to share this with you.

Its from this site www.engrish.com which is a collection of mistranslated stuff from Japan.
Top Twelve Things Dean Wants to See Happen Next Year
1. Keith Richards in a movie - Johnny Depp's Keith inspired pirate in Pirates of the Caribbean made me curious.
2. Alien vs. Predator - Oh wait, this is actually happening. Check Movies.com
3. Julia Roberts should make a TV show - So she won't stink up any movies
4. A shark movie, how many times must I ask?
5. A sequel to the shark movie.
6. The fourth installment to the Evil Dead Series
7. A sequel to Labyrinth, it has to have David Bowie. Maybe even Jennifer Connely as she returns to the Labyrinth, seeking the Goblin King for something. I don't know, but I'll buy it.
8. Another comedy by Mike Judge, Office Space was brilliant and I want more movies instead of King of the Hill.
9. A war movie that is more than a portrayal of an event, give me some drama.
10. Short Circuit 3. You'll watch it too, shut up.
11. Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor are both still around right? Yeah, so they should make a movie.
12. I've said it before, and now again. Luc Besson and Jean Reno need another movie, but I'll settle for a Jean Reno action movie.

Holy Crap!!!!! While goofing on IMDB I discovered the greatest movie of all time!!! Check it Out Ray Liotta vs. LL Cool J. Can it get any better?!?


Supporting Actor of the Week

Jeffrey Jones

A Tim Burton Favorite (Beetlejuice, Sleepy Hollow, Ed Wood) Jeffrey Jones is quite a versatile supporting actor who has covered a range of characters in his movies. He was hilarious in Mom and Dad Save the World, Beetlejuice, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, and Ed Wood; evil in Devil's Advocate, and Sleepy Hollow; and had good dramatic turns in Amadeus (Which got him a Golden Globe Nom.) and The Crucible. His bug-eyed comedy roles is what he is most known for as most people would probably link him to the vindictive Principle in Ferris Bueller, keep an eye out for him next year in the TV Show Deadwood, which sounds like a dark show about a local town shortly after the Custer Massacre. I did some weird Jeffrey Jones Survey thing on his webpage that tells you which role you are like from his career, I don't quite agree but I stuck it below.

Which Jeffrey Jones Are You

Angel Season 2 Review

Amazing. This show is aging well, the cast is coming together on-screen, Angel is becoming more dynamic instead of the simple brooding Vampire he started as, and the plot lines are getting deeper and more imaginative. There wasn't a single weak episode, and there is almost nothing negative to say about the show. The reliance on Buffy was severed this season, there was I think two quick (and I mean quick) cameos by Willow, I think Buffy came by once, and Faith had one cameo. This show is rolling along strong, and I am really looking forward to season 3, which I have to download since it isn't released until FEB. (AAARGH) Another review on the way soon.

Friday, October 10, 2003

I want a new feature.

CJ can go on these tyrades, Dave can go off on any political issue known to man, yet I have to do something in order for me to make a Blog. Well, I have my mind set on thinking up some kind of feature for me to talk about random things from time to time. Like right now I am halfway through Angel season 2, and that has captured my time so I have seen nothing on which to write. So...watch out, I'm gonna do something...at some point...for entertainment. Yeah...

Thursday, October 09, 2003

Angel Season 1 and Buffy Season 4 Reviews

Angel has quickly overtaken Buffy as a superior show, better writing and less dating are key in this equation. The first half of the season wasn't so great but once Wesley came on and replaced the gay demon the show has greatly improved. I'm not quite sure how much I love the new vampire hunter guy that came on at the end of the season and is a regular in Season 2, but I'll take him over one of Buffy's boyfriends anyday. Angel is a blend of great noir with some humor and kickin' action, this is one to watch.

Buffy Season 4 makes me sad because I can already see the show declining with no signs of possible redemption. Willow is gay now. Kind of a spoiler for those who haven't seen it but you may as well know the inevitable. I couldn't help think that if I wished hard enough the world would change and so she wouldn't, but alas no. She's a lesbian, who's partner is so boring I can only think of Jeff Bridges as a fair comparison. Today, I saw an old movie with Eliza Dushku and guess who?? the freakin boring lesbian! I shudder to think that it is Eliza's fault that this girl came on the show, I can only dream it was a coincidence. Another thing I found bizarre was that both Angel and Buffy ended with non-climatic episodes. Both of them whupped on their season long villians in the second to last episode, and then had just an ordinary episode to cap it off. Although Kudos to the Buffy finale for the great Apocalypse Now sequence with the old principle as Brando. Season 4 was still good but the Willow turn and the extreme focus on Buffy and her new boy made this season a marked decline from seasons 2 and 3. I am scared to continue, and maybe I should end now before it gets worse and keep my happy memories. But no, I must go on. Maybe, to my own destruction...

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

Chicago Movie Review, but mostly Academy Slam

Sorry, this whole Academy Award rant is a bit old, but I didn't have a blog at the time.

I recently watched Chicago, the winner of 6 Academy Awards, of which it deserved maybe 4 (Technical Awards, Costumes and such) but "Best Picture" and "Best Supporting Actress" were rewarded for Politics and not achievement. Catherine Zeta-Jones did nothing special, and Richard Gere alone should have eliminated their chances for Best Picture. How this movie beat Gangs of New York, and Lord of the Rings is beyond me. However, if The Hours had won I would have killed myself, I hate the movies that are made solely to win an award. "I've got it! Lets take an attractive actress and make her ugly then make her depressed and angry. Winner for sure!") Note: Nicole Kidman won. This year was probably the most disappointing year at the Academy Awards, no one but Chris Cooper really deserved what they got. I think someone should explain how Adaptation didn't get "Best Screenplay based on previous material" there won't be another movie that clever for years. OK, my rant is over. Hopefully next year will be better.
Wrong Turn Movie Review

Eliza Dushku is back in Wrong Turn which is a blend of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre with Deliverance, but not quite as good as either of those two. It had some good sequences, but not too much distinguished this from the other teen horror gore movies. However, all of us have that need for a horror movie every once and awhile and this was enough of a scratch to last me the week. It comes out later this month, it didn't suck, so why not rent it?

Tuesday, October 07, 2003

Game Review

Hunter: The Reckoning Wayward

Wow, this game sucked. I actually fell asleep playing it with my roommate Jon. Besides having two-player co-op there is nothing of value to this game. The game requires both analog sticks so the attack buttons are the L and R buttons which is awkward, and on top of that the fighting is deeply repetitive with each character having only one sword attack and one gun attack. The camera sucked and you often had to run through a level twice to find everything because there was no map or anything to lead you around. Don't even consider this game for rental or purchase. Next on my list from Gamefly.com is Buffy which is being rated as one of the best of PS2's releases.

Monday, October 06, 2003

As I have missed a week on my feature of "Supporting Actor of the Week" you will be graced with 2. Enjoy

Supporting Actor of the Week

Jeremy Piven

Few supporting actors excite me as much as Jeremy Piven does, and he can even make or break a movie. (Serendipity would have been a waste without him) Plus, his starring role in PCU proves that he can make it happen on his own. As a close personal friend of John Cusack (you'll hardly ever see Cusack in a movie without him) he became quite familiar to us all as the "Best Friend". However in his other exploits such as PCU and Rush Hour 2 he has been breaking out of that mold as someone who can be crazy and fun. More recently he played his exact opposite of PCU in Old School as the vindictive Dean of Students, and be sure to catch him soon in the movie Runaway Jury alongside Cusack, Hackman, and Hoffman. Booyah.

Supporting Actress of the Week

Maggie Smith

She has had quite a long career, (Can you remember her in Clash of the Titans?) but recently she has become the perfect old woman whether she is Miss Wendy in Hook, Mother Superior in Sister Act, or slapping you around at Hogwarts in the Harry Potter series. Her early career involved mostly theatre work and many murder mystery type movies, including the popular Murder by Death and Death on the Nile. Not as well known in America, this Tony winning actress was ranked Tenth in the 2001 Orange Film Survey of the top British Actresses.
An Apology and some New deals

I am sorry that I have been away for awhile and posts just didn't happen. I will try to return to my daily additions.
First let me crank out some of my newest additions to my collection, and as the Flea Market season is pretty much over they will now be few and far between.

Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein
If you only own one Abbott and Costello this is the one it should be. Bela Lugosi and Lon Cheney Jr. both reprise their famed roles of Dracula and the Wolfman and comic duo of A&C are at thier best. They tried to do this type of movie a few more times but the outcome was lessened with each attempt.

James Woods and Lou Gossett Jr. both in the best roles of their lives. Lou is a retired boxer who takes on 10 men in a row on a bet. Great boxing movie with great comedy and drama. This is a must rent movie.

Undercover Blues
A hilarious family oriented movie starring Dennis Quaid and Kathleen Turner as a married couple of Special Agents who have taken time off to raise a child and get sucked into taking another case. Dennis Quaid and Stanley Tucci are the ones to watch especially when Quaid beats up Tucci nonchalantly with a stroller.

Johnny Dangerously
Michael Keaton, Peter Boyle, and Joe Piscopo in a mobster spoof which was funnier than the more recent mob spoof Mafia!. The best is the foreign mob boss who hasn't quite mastered English as he mis-curses throughout the movie "Farging Iceholes!". It is one of my favorite non-Mel Brooks spoofs.

White Hunter Black Heart
I haven't seen this one but I needed four movies to get the sale price and Clint Eastwood is usually a safe bet. This is one of his earlier attempts at directing and I am interested to see his progression in anticipation of Mystic River which I am dying to see.

Thursday, October 02, 2003

A New Feature

"Movies that should have sucked but didn't"

The Beautician and the Beast

A remake of The King and I starring Fran Dresher. This should have been the worst movie ever, BUT for some reason it worked. Timothy Dalton played a wonderful dictator with a heart of gold, and Fran was cute as the mistaken Science teacher. No worse than the Jodie Foster remake a few years later.
The Rundown

I have returned from the Rundown and I must say it was enjoyable. And scary as it is, I think the Rock is my favorite up and coming action hero. He kicks quite a bit of anus, and he's more than capable of comedy. I didn't like him in the personalityless Scorpion King, but since then I have been impressed. This movie had just the right amount of time between action sequences, the right amount of comedy, and the right amount of Christopher Walken and monkeys. And the Rock vs Jungle Ninjas is one of the best action sequences I have seen this year, mainly because of the slow-motion smash of a burning log on someone's face (better than the Warriors chair smash!). This is worth your viewing time, at least rent it for some action/comedy fun.

Wednesday, October 01, 2003

Top Ten Prison Movies (May just have prison portions)

1. The Shawshank Redemption - Goes without saying
2. Lock Up - One of my fav Stallone movies, great supporting cast with Eclipse (Frank McRae), Tom Sizemore, John Amos, and Donald Sutherland
3. Escape from Alcatraz - Clint Eastwood rules
4. The Green Mile - Another Stephen King pic, makes you feel so much hatred for Percy and you gotta love Michael Clarke Duncan.
5. Life is Beautiful - Points for originality at least.
6. American History X - Brutal prison racism stuff, and his black sheet cleaning friend steals the show.
7. Escape from New York (Technically a Prison) - Neat concept for a prison, shame they made a sequel.
8. Animal Factory - Steve Buscemi makes an interesting Prison movie with nothing but brilliance from Willem Dafoe.
9. No Escape - Better execution than Escape from NY, Ray Liotta and Kurt Russell get equal points.
10. Tango and Cash - The highlight of the movie is their prison time and Kurt Russell and Stallone win for most movies on the list.

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