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Posts Tagged ‘crazed veterans’

The Guest

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014

tn_guestFirst I gotta give you that dreaded warning that more than the usual amount of fun in this one comes from not knowing what type of movie it’s gonna be. Not like it’s some crazy rollercoaster or mindblowing, rug-pulling shocker of a twist or anything, but it mixes up genres a little bit and I’m glad I didn’t know where it was going. So you might want to do what I did and just know it’s from the director and writer of YOU’RE NEXT and give it a shot. That worked well for me. But if you want to read my review beforehand anyway, be my guest.

Dan Stevens, who you know from playing the libidinous chandelier designer Lord Downington Abernathy on Downton Abbey, but who I know from playing the douchey soul-patched heroin trafficker in the other new movie I watched the day before this, plays a soldier called David Collins who shows up on Mrs. Peterson (Sheila Kelley)’s doorstep one day. He knew her son Caleb, who died in Afghanistan, says he promised to come check on the family for him and tell them he loved them right to the end. This brings up alot of emotions of course but she invites him in (like a fucking vampire) and he befriends her drinking, Henry-Winkler-esque husband Spencer (Leland Orser, SEVEN), her cool 20-year-old waitress daughter Anna (Maika Monroe) and her put-upon high school son Luke (Brendan Meyer, SPOOKY BUDDIES). So he ends up sticking around for a while. (read the rest of this shit…)

Exterminator 2

Sunday, February 10th, 2008

The Vietnam Vet turned psychotic New York criminal assassinator is back, and still played by Robert Ginty, but now directed by part 1 producer Mark Buntzman. I was impressed that part 1’s very first shot was the hero flying away from a fiery explosion. No studio logos, even. Part 2 starts with the Cannon Films logo, but the opening shot is a good one: The Exterminator stepping out into an alley wearing a welding mask, he sprays his blowtorch into the camera and the title appears in the fire.

I didn’t enjoy part 2 nearly as much as part 1, but some bad movie aficianados may like it better. Part 1 is clumsy and raw, but part 2 is just cheesy and stupid. But it’s way more ridiculous. This time there’s no cop character, there’s just The Exterminator going around like a masked slasher killing criminals. In the first one I think he used a welding torch for a little American style perfecly legal and ethical interrogation techniques. In this one they act like a welding mask is his Jason mask and a blowtorch is his Freddy glove. The creepy part is he only appears after they’ve committed crimes, and it’s even said “it’s like he was waiting for us.” So you wonder why he doesn’t intervene before some gangsters murder an innocent elderly couple. Instead he just waits outside so he can light them on fire after they’re done. (Trivia: One of the first guys he lights on fire is played by Reggie Rock Bythewood, writer of GET ON THE BUS, director of BIKER BOYZ.) (read the rest of this shit…)

The Exterminator

Thursday, February 7th, 2008

THE EXTERMINATOR is a crude but enjoyable vigilante action movie from 1980. It’s kind of in the vein of ROLLING THUNDER but closer to the quality level of THE PARK IS MINE. Robert Ginty plays a troubled Vietnam vet whose best friend (Steve James, more on him later) gets paralyzed by a gang so he kills them in revenge, then decides to declare himself The Exterminator and go murder various criminals. Now that I think about it this is actually in the vein of THE PUNISHER (either version), but it came before those movies.

You know this movie means business when the very first shot is the main character being tossed through the air by a huge explosion. There’s not even a studio logo before that, that is the very first shot. It starts out with a gruesome battle in Vietnam that explains why a dude would be troubled enough to become The Exterminator. There’s a very realistic and disturbing beheading in this scene. Stan Winston was one of the effects guys. It’s one of those action movie paradoxes because on one hand these things are what torments the main character, they are what cause him to go crazy and what he flashes back to when he’s murdering criminals. But on the other hand we think they are awesome. We want to see explosions and beheadings. As viewers, what’s worst for him is best for us. We are cruel gods. (read the rest of this shit…)

The Park Is Mine

Wednesday, January 4th, 2006

I never heard of this one before but the box caught my eye. It’s from ’86 and apparently made for TV. Tommy Lee Jones – after ROLLING THUNDER but before UNDER SIEGE – plays another angry veteran on a rampage. This one though is unusual because he basically inherits this rampage from a deceased friend. I mean can you imagine? A little bit of money, maybe some furniture or something. But inheriting a rampage? That’s rough.

The movie starts out with a guy jumping off a building. Tommy Lee is at the funeral and shortly after receives a letter, and a key, from his dead ‘Nam buddy. In the letter the dead guy explains that he’s been preparing an attack on Central Park for a long time. The key leads to a ridiculous stash of guns, bullets and bombs. There are also maps showing where this guy has already planted explosives around the park. (read the rest of this shit…)