I'm not trying to be a hero! I'M FIGHTING THE DRAGON!!

Archive for June, 2010

The Crazies (2010)

Wednesday, June 30th, 2010

tn_crazies2010Every nerd and his uncle has two or more ideas for a zombie movie these days. And even the uncle got kind of sick of hearing about zombies two or three years ago. But as far as George A. Romero creations go, aren’t crazies more relevant than zombies anyway? Coming back from the dead is kind of a quaint 1960s problem in my opinion. Today we worry about ordinary people, people in our neighborhoods and families, suddenly turning nuts on us. We look at them and we can tell something is wrong, something is different, and we don’t really know why but it might be caused by some military fuckup. And there is no reasoning with these crazies. They are not our friends and loved ones anymore. That’s why a crazy is better than a zombie. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Robot Jox

Monday, June 28th, 2010

tn_robotjoxStuart Gordon’s ROBOT JOX is the timeless story of some Robot Jox. It’s a post-apocalyptic world where the surviving factions of humanity fight over territories in sanctioned robot-on-robot battles. During the time of this story the Americans and Russians are fighting over Alaska. So this is the story of those robot battles and of the jox that jock the robots.

The robots aren’t alive, they are controlled by jox. Robot jox, if you want to be specific about which type of jox they are. These robot jox train in the martial arts and what not to prime their bodies to do moves that will be duplicated by the robot body around them. They have teams of course to build their robots and work on new weapons and help train them. So it’s like a futuristic cross between UFC, NASCAR, and war. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Paint Your Wagon

Sunday, June 27th, 2010

tn_paintyourwagonPAINT YOUR WAGON was next on my Clint Eastwood list. Holy shit, you’re telling me Clint and Lee Marvin did a western together? How did I never see this one before?

The music on the credits is pretty corny, but I forgive it. Right off the bat you got Lee as a drunk old hustler in a top hat, he meets young Clint and declares him his partner. This is good shit.

Wait, what is Clint doing with that guitar? Hold on, is he crooning? Wait a– is this–

Holy shit, this is a musical! (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

notes on Toy Story 3

Friday, June 25th, 2010

tn_toystory3Live action filmatists, pick up the fuckin pace, please. I didn’t want to review TOY STORY 3. It is a cartoon about children’s toys. We all know by now that this Pixar company is the best at what they do. I already admitted that WALL-E touched me inappropriately in the heart, that UP made me cry like a bitch and that CARS made me wonder how talking cars make love. So it’s no surprise that I keep enjoying these Pixar movies. Everybody does. But nobody wants to hear what the guy who wrote the book about Steven Seagal thinks about Buzz Lightyear or whatever. It’s just not something I should have to do. There are plenty of movies starring ex-wrestlers or karate champions that I haven’t written about yet. But you live action directors are fuckin up this summer. You’re backing me into a corner. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Nightbreed

Thursday, June 24th, 2010

tn_nightbreedI knew it. I fuckin knew Dave Cronenberg was up to something. All due respect to him as a consistently great and unique filmatist across three decades, but you gotta admit the guy is suspicious. I mean, CRASH had me wondering. And eXistenZ raised my eyebrows. Possessing in-depth knowledge of tooth-firing gristle guns isn’t a crime in and of itself, but you gotta wonder why he knows so much about the topic, right?

And then DEAD RINGERS. I mean, for crying out loud, DEAD RINGERS. So sonofabitch, why am I not surprised when I watch Clive Barker’s NIGHTBREED and there’s Dave Cronenberg as a masked “baby slasher” murdering families around Toronto? (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

R.I.P. Garry Shider

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

tn_garryshiderI didn’t hear about this until last night, but apparently Garry Shider, guitarist, musical director and singer for Parliament and Funkadelic, died on the 16th. He had cancer of the brain and lungs and died at home in Maryland. He was only 56.

Garry was a great guitar player and he also sang lead vocals on some of P-Funk’s greatest anthems, including “One Nation Under a Groove” and “Standing On the Verge of Getting It On.” The song he played at virtually every show was the beautiful “Cosmic Slop.” Turns out he didn’t write it, but I always thought of it as his trademark song. Despite the psychedelic title it’s a heartwrenching story from the point-of-view of a kid whose mother resorts to prostitution to feed her kids, and every night he hears her praying for forgiveness. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Dead Ringers

Monday, June 21st, 2010

tn_deadringersOne type of humor I’m a sucker for is the ol’ pathetic lie joke. For example in that movie KINGPIN Woody Harrelson and Randy Quaid are trying to hustle some guys at a bowling alley and Quaid says he’s gonna lose all his money because he’s “so bombed.” But the bartender knows he hasn’t been drinking and says, “You get that way from ginger ale?”

They’re caught, they’re dead, there’s nowhere to go from there, they should hang up the towel, but they don’t. Woody goes for the pathetic lie.

“Nah, he was sniffing glue in the parking lot.” (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Best Worst Movie

Friday, June 18th, 2010

tn_bestworstmovieIf you’ve ever seen TROLL 2 you know what a weirdly terrible movie it is. A little boy discovers that his town of Nilbog is secretly overrun by goblins who are feeding the humans foods that turn them into plants so they can be eaten by the goblins, who are vegetarians. (Ever thought of that, Tofurkey people? Just turn real turkeys into plants and sell ’em!) The main thing I remember from the movie is that nobody believes the kid that they shouldn’t eat the food, so he stands up on a table and pisses all over it.

Well, that kid was Michael Stephenson, he’s now grown up, has a sense of humor about the thing, and has written and directed a documentary about it. A little under a third of BEST WORST MOVIE is the type of deal you expect: interviews with “fans” about their TROLL 2 parties, their homemade masks and childhood memories, and scenes of the cast finally enjoying the limelight as the movie is rediscovered and enjoyed in revival screenings, even if it’s in a sarcastic or ironic type of way. Some of this material would be a pretty good DVD extra, some gets a little tedious. But it’s well worth sitting through for the rest of the movie, which in my opinion comes close to True Greatness in its exploration of relative fame, abandoned dreams, the subjectivity of art and the dangers of smug hipsterism. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Red Heat (1988)

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

tn_redheatOne thing we’ve learned from the movies is that cops often come from faraway lands to follow a fugitive or transfer prisoners back to their jurisdictions, and when they do that they have to team with a screw-up from the local department and at first they hate each other and say ignorant things but over time the screw-up will learn from working with the foreigner and the foreigner will see something in the screw-up that no one else did and they will gain respect for each other and at the end they will be great friends to set up for the sequel that most likely will never come. Pat Morita came from Japan and did it in COLLISION COURSE, Jackie Chan came from Hong Kong and did it in RUSH HOUR, Clint Eastwood came from Arizona and sort of did it in COOGAN’S BLUFF, except he didn’t need the partner because he’s motherfuckin Clint. Well, here we got Schwarzenegger coming from Russia to Chicago to get the Georgian gangster who killed his partner and is bringing “the American poison” into their country. James Belushi has to escort him and Walter Hill has to escort the movie. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

The A-Team

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

tn_ateamMore like THE C+/B- TEAM if you ask me! Nah, I’m sure somebody beat me to that one, and they probly graded lower. THE A-TEAM is semi-enjoyable but not nearly as good as I wish it was and truly believe it could’ve been even if it’s an adaptation of a stupid ’80s TV show where everybody fires guns and nobody ever gets their head blown off. Directed by Joe Carnahan in a toned down version of his SMOKIN’ ACES hyperactive style, using a script he took over from an individual responsible for THURSDAY, SWORDFISH, HITMAN and WOLVERINE, it’s a movie that only partially earns its swagger. I kind of went back and forth on my feelings about these characters constantly laughing as they pull off ridiculous digitized feats in jets and choppers. It’s kind of relatable and endearing, kind of frat boy and smarmy. It’s the only action movie I can think of where after multiple action beats the characters yell “THAT WAS AWESOME!” (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.