Okay, let me take a deep breath and explain this shit. You remember the movie THE RING, directed by Gore Verbinski, starring Naomi Watts. It was a remake of the japanese movie RINGU (or RING) directed by Hideo Nakata. (You may remember I reviewed THE RING on THE AIN’T IT COOL NEWS and also was the first motherfucker on the internet to reveal it was being made back when I reviewed RINGU and RINGU 2 for them.) The movie by Hideo Nakata came after a TV series and both were based on a novel. At the same time Nakata’s movie came out there was another movie called RING 2 or RASEN which means SPIRAL but is not to be confused with the Japanese horror movie UZUMAKI which is about spirals but is completely unrelated to rings. Well RING 2 is also not to be confused with RINGU 2 which is directed by Hideo Nakata. See, RINGU was a huge hit but RASEN (even though it was based on the sequel book) was not, so they pretended it never happened and made a new sequel. Soon after in Korea, they made a remake of the original RINGU, known here as THE RING VIRUS and I haven’t seen that one but I heard it has stuff that was ONLY in the movie version but also stuff only from the book. In the US Gore Verbinski made THE RING which is sort of the same story as the Japanese movie but now in seattle with horses and a girl named Samara instead of Sadako. That one now has a sequel coming out which is directed by, holy shit, Hideo Nakata himself, director of the original RING movie and the second attempt at the first RING movie sequel. So now he’s directing the sequel to the remake of his original, which is apparently a direct sequel to the remake, not a remake of either his original sequel or the sequel that was adapted from the book sequel that he did not direct and nobody liked. (read the rest of this shit…)
Archive for the ‘Thriller’ Category
For serious movie watching individuals like you or me, movies start to be like a drug after a while. You know how potheads and acidheads are always experimenting with their drugs? Dude, I wonder what the produce department is like on acid. Dude, I wonder what Disneyland is like on acid. Dude, I wonder what Knott’s Berry Farm is like on acid. Dude, I wonder what Police Academy 2 is like on acid.
Well you and I, we’re walking the clean path. But we’re kind of the same way with movies. Depending on the movie you want it to be a different situation – sit in a different part of a theater, see it with friends or alone, see it with a big crowd or early in the morning so there’s nobody there. If it’s a sequel, do you rewatch the original first or keep it distant in your mind? I had to make these type of decisions for THE GRUDGE because it’s a remake of this japanese horror movie I’ve been meaning to see for a while. Nobody probaly remembers this but I was the first one to review RINGU and RINGU 2 over there on The Ain’t It Cool News and the first one to report it was being remade as THE RING. And then I reviewed that remake too when they made it. (read the rest of this shit…)
I don’t know if you remember this movie, it’s about a haunted car. In other words, it’s based on a Stephen King book. And that also means it’s a 50’s car that plays old Little Richard songs and crap while it kills people. I know the filmatists today are bad, they gotta put references to all the TV shows and movies from their childhood, but Stephen King is the original. This guy has been cannibalizing his childhood for decades. And also he’s been making up stories about inanimate objects killing people. Killer laundry machines and shit like that. Remember in the TV movie version of THE SHINING, there was a haunted fire hose that killed a guy? It’s alot like that only a car.
Actually, it’s a better movie than I remember it being when I saw it back in the ’80s, and I’m going to give most of the credit to Mr. John Carpenter. I’m not saying this is HALLOWEEN or THEY LIVE but it’s a good straightforward haunted car movie. The movie stars Keith Gordon (the kid from HOME MOVIES and DRESSED TO KILL) as a nerdy kid whose jock buddy tells him he needs to get laid now that he’s a senior and who gets his ass kicked in metal shop. They stab his sack lunch to death with a switchblade and he suffers the humiliation of everybody seeing that his mom packed him yogurt. (read the rest of this shit…)
I gotta question I was wondering about. If you had to choose one Scott brother that was better (or not as bad), which would it be, Ridley or Tony? On one hand, Tony has never made a truly great movie like ALIEN or, you know, BLADE RUNNER is a good one too in my opinion. Both by Ridley. Tony’s got nothing on that level. But on the other hand, Tony has a couple okay movies: TRUE ROMANCE and CRIMSON TIDE are both pretty okay. I’m looking on IMDB here and– okay wait a minute, Tony Scott did TOP GUN? I forgot about that one. Never mind. I guess I choose Ridley. Congratulations on this great achievement, Ridley. I remember you seemed pretty pissed off that you didn’t get the best director Oscar for that corny gladiator movie you made. Maybe this great honor will cheer you up. Way to go, champ.
So I guess that makes Tony the underdog here, and he had one this year called MAN ON FIRE that seemed to show some promise as a film of Badass Cinema. Academy Award Winner Denzel Washington (“You shot me in the ass!”) plays an alcoholic ex-CIA killer guy who’s hard up for work so he becomes a bodyguard for a little girl in South America. People get kidnapped there more often than they don’t get kidnapped, so next thing you know she gets stolen and this motherfucker stops at nothing to get her back and/or torture, maim and murder the people responsible. And I don’t know if you ever saw the poster for this one but it was real good. No collage or nothing, just one giant picture of Denzel wearing a suit and sunglasses, looking real tough. Behind him you see nothing but fire and smoke, and he’s standing half way in front of this little girl, holding out one hand in front of her, and she’s wearing a private school uniform and hugging a teddy bear. (You know, for emphasis.) It’s like Chow Yun Fat with the baby on the HARD BOILED poster, only 9 years later. (read the rest of this shit…)
Sometimes it almost seems like there’s a whole genre of “INDIANA JONES-TYPE” pictures – movies that look back nostalgically to those golden days when George Lucas looked back nostalgically to those other golden days. THE MUMMY is one example of this horrible type of picture.
I bet some individuals consider SKY CAPTAIN AND THE WORLD OF TOMORROW to be in that same category, but I think it’s different. It doesn’t have that same third generation xerox feel, because this movie actually feels alot more like the old serials and pulp novels and crap that influenced the genre than the STAR WARS pictures and what not do. The technology used is very modern (apparently it was all shot with actors in front of blue screens and everything else is computered in there) but there’s not a whole lot of modernizing going on here. It takes place in some alternate 1930s where THE WIZARD OF OZ exists but the Hindenburg never blew up and some British fighter jet hot shot named Joseph Sky Captain defends America and the world from evil science with his “army for hire” and wacky inventor sidekick. (read the rest of this shit…)
Hi, everyone. “Moriarty” here with some Rumblings From The Lab…
Holy cow, I think that’s the sound of my balls getting busted. And I s’pose if they’re going to get busted, I’m glad it’s by Guillermo Del Toro’s favorite working film critic, the Northwest’s greatest ex-con turned online movie columnist… the one… the only… Vern:
VERN’S VHS PILE
Howdy boys. Well I know Moriarty’s got his DVD shelf that he’s real proud of and he has more DVDs than he will actually live to ever watch, which is good. Always wise to have that shit around to pawn, in my experience. I’m not saying he’s gonna get a whole lot for BASIC, GHOST SHIP, ROLLERBALL, MR. DEEDS, and that kind of crap (yeah, I studied that picture too), but hey, if it buys half a bowl of soup on a cold day it might be worth it. Always save for the future. Anyway I’ve got a couple more reviews of straight to video movies for you so I thought it was time I shared with you something very special. Not to brag or anything but this is Vern’s VHS Pile:
Yep, that’s right, that’s a pile of VHS tapes right there. Most of them are screeners, all of them are an obsolete format, and one of them is even a good movie. Two if you count the headcleaner. I know alot of people will not believe I actually have such a pile, so let me just head you newsies off at the pass and tell you that no, that is not fake, that’s a bonafide 100% real photograph, and all are owned by me, not rented like Ja Rule’s mansion on that episode of CRIBS I read about. (read the rest of this shit…)
This is a lesser known but completely fucking badass Walter Hill picture about a getaway driver. Ryan O’Neal plays the driver character (called “The Driver”) who is pursued by a semi-crazy cop with no name (“The Detective” on the credits) played by Bruce Dern.
The movie starts out with a robbery sort of like the dog race robbery Hill wrote for the remake of THE GETAWAY, except that the movie rushes through the robbery part and focuses on the escape. Right away you know you are in for a treat with this movie, because it’s some of the most intense car chases I’ve ever seen. Lots of car’s–eye-view shots as the driver swerves through oncoming traffic, red lights, parking garages, narrow alleys… he’s got 2 or 3 cops right on his ass everywhere he goes but he keeps managing to run them off the road or fake them out and leave them in the dust. (read the rest of this shit…)
Like the character John Lithgow plays, this movie is fucking nuts. From the very beginning, you don’t know where RAISING CAIN is going, or why, or how. Maybe it’s headed in a straight path, maybe it’s about to spin out on the side of the road, toss you out the window and back over you a couple times, then take off laughing. Or maybe it will go right to your house and drop you off just like you asked, but later you’ll think you hear it jerking off outside your window. You’ll take a deep breathe and you’ll toss open the curtains but it will turn out RAISING CAIN is not there, instead there’s some guy you’ve never seen before riding a unicycle, sporting a beard made of bees. Anything could happen. You don’t really know.
Earlier in his career, Brian DePalma did a lot of “Hitchcockian thrillers.” Yeah there were surprises and plot twists, and little tricks that he played on you, trying to get you to attach your sympathy to one character only to later find yourself lost and not knowing which one to follow. But it must not have been until RAISING CAIN that he decided to take that into overdrive. Take all the techniques and structures of your standard formulas, chop them all up and tape them back together William S. Burroughs style. Now there is no rhyme or reason to it and you get all confused and surprised and god damn if this isn’t a great movie. (read the rest of this shit…)
Actually, not bad.
This is the story of a world not too far off where everything is similar to now except that Converse All Stars are rare and robots are common. Instead of the other way around. These robots are used to walk dogs, clean the house, chop the vegetables, etc. Everybody loves them, the same way assholes today love their cell phones and their iPods. And they got these new ones coming out pretty soon, the US Robotics corporation is making a big deal about it. These ones talk more like humans and have cute little rubber noses and they are see-through like my iMac. When they talk you can see little dealies moving around inside their heads. Good job on that detail, computer animators. (read the rest of this shit…)
I don’t know if you guys have ever heard of this one. It’s a weird crime movie starring Fred Ward as a cop with fake teeth, Alec Baldwin as a crook who steals his teeth, and Jennifer Jason Leigh as Baldwin’s dumb hooker turned naive fiancee.
From the cover you’d assume this is just some boring cop movie, so you’ll just have to take my word for it that it’s something completely unique. Or don’t take my word for it. Let me explain to you a little bit about the plot, and see if that waxes your mustache.
See, Alec Baldwin (back when he was young and skinny, and made the gals swoon) gets off a plane in Miami, steals somebody’s luggage, and heads for the exit. At the bottom of an escalator he is approached by a hare krishna, who asks him what his name is. He says, “Trouble,” breaks the guy’s finger, and leaves. (read the rest of this shit…)