Sunday, June 26, 2016

10 Cloverfield Lane 2016 5 out of 10 (SPOILERS)

10 Cloverfield Lane  2016  5 out of 10


10 Cloverfield Lane was a cool concept and the movie itself was interesting,  however it failed for me to a certain degree.   In fact the ending kind of ruined the film for me.  It could have been an 8 out of 10, but I didn't like how it turned out.  It set itself up like an M Night Shyamalan movie that was going to rely completely on a big twist at the end of the movie.  The story is about a woman that after getting hit in a car accident wakes up chained to a bed in a bomb shelter with two men.  Her main captor/rescuer (depending on what you believe) claims that the outside world has come under a chemical attack.   John Goodman does a great job as survivalist Howard that demands respect from the 2 people he has in his shelter.   The woman (played by Mary Elizabeth Winstead) doesn't believe that the chemical attack is real and desperately wants to escape.  The acting is great --but the issue with the movie is the plot.   You can't have it both ways and the movie does just that.   I think the movie needed to decide one way for another which way it wanted to go.  

The movie should have you guessing whether there has really been a chemical/ alien attack is real or whether Howard is just a crazy killer.  Instead it gives you clues that the attack is real......then gives you evidence that Howard actually kidnapped and killed a missing girl ---then gives you more evidence that the alien attack is real.  It turns out both are true and I feel that is a cop out that took away from the movie for me.  A much better twist would have been to have the other character that was in the bunker turn out to be in on it with Howard or to have it be that Howard was just a strange guy that happened to rescue her.   Instead they make him a killer and .....the alien attack is real.   I feel that the film makers not making a choice to go in one direction or another takes away from the alien attack.   The alien attack being real at the end isn't a surprise....they have already gone out of their way to prove that it was real.  If you want me to suspend my disbelief---you can't have Howard be a killer and there is an alien attack going on at the same time.   It should have been a surprise until the end as to what was really going on.  Instead it just became so unbelievabl

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Saturday, June 25, 2016

Project Almanac 2015 9 out of 10 (SPOILERS) (Time Travel Movie #3)

Project Almanac 2015  9 out of 10

In Project Alamanac Time Travel meets the Lost Footage genre.  I remember thinking the trailer looked cool last year when the movie came out--but I never got around to seeing it.  Lost footage films are interesting--yet often really unrealistic by the nature that someone keeps filming the whole time.  

I was able to suspend my disbelief (as one of my Podcast co-hosts says) in this particular lost footage film.  The story captured my attention from the beginning.   I will pretty much watch any movie that has to do with Time Travel and so when I was returning from Hawaii this past weekend it was able to watch this on the plane I leaped at the opportunity.   I personally loved Project Almanac even more than I expected to.

The movie follows a group super smart teens who stumble across weird footage on a VHS tape of one of their 6th birthday parties in which one of the teens sees himself in the background of his own party.  This discovery lead them into his dad's basement where they find plans for a Time Machine.  They tinker with the plans until they finally succeed and are able to test the Time Travel device with small little group missions to try and fix small problems in their life (like failing a mid term exam).

They set up rules  (Very much like in the Lost Footage Super power movie  Chroncile.   They will always jumping together, etc....
They then start letting the power corrupt them with a trip back a day to win the lottery.  The main character then spoils them all with a trip to a concert that has already happened with backstage  VIP passes he bought online for a couple of bucks after the fact. He misses his moment to kiss the cute popular girl and when that moment fades days later he decides to go back to the concert and this time not blow his big moment and go in for the kiss.   This changes everything for him and when he jumps back she is his girlfriend and everything is perfect.....or so he thinks.   Apparently going to the concert --caused a Butterfly Effect that started a chain of terrible events -that have changed the world in a negative way. They discuss as a group going back and trying to fix things --by not going to the concert in the first place.   The main character starts leaping back and trying to fix things and instead keeps making things worse.  

I thought it was a clever and entertaining Time Travel film.  The story was interesting. The cause and effects were fun to watch play out.  You wait in anticipation for the moment that kicked off the film where the main character jumps back in time to visit his own 6th birthday (the day his dad died).   I've seen many people online arguing about the ending--but I actually loved it.   I would definitely recommend the film for fans of Time Travel.  I enjoyed the nods to previous Time Travel films within the film as well.

 It makes me want to do a list of my favorite Time Travel films.

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Sunday, June 12, 2016

Ghostbusters Isn't Ghostbusters without Bill Murray in the lead Role: Revisiting a Classic

I've seen over 3,000 movies and the original Ghostbusters is in my top 30 movies of all time. 

I've been vocal about my displeasure about the new Ghostbusters movie that is coming out this summer.  I couldn't care less about the fact that it has an all women cast.   My problem with the new Ghostbusters is that it is just a Reboot/Rehash of the original. 
There is so much potential in doing a new Ghostbusters film---they just did it the wrong way.

I'm not a fan of just doing a remake of old movies, especially when the original is an all-time classic.  I prefer sequels that move the story into a new era.    Tron and the Force Awakens got it right. Both of these films paid tribute to the old classic fan favorites --while passing the torch and moving the story into a new era. Ghostbusters could have done the same thing.   You could keep your all women cast and just made it a passing of the torch sequel.   It could have been a Ghostbusters franchise started by woman.   Instead they choose to Reboot the series and pretend that the original Classic movie didn't exist (Despite their deceptive first trailer).  

I'll probably eventually see the new Ghostbusters on Netflix, probably just to see the updated special effects....But I'm not going to go to the theaters to see a rehash of something that was done right the first time around. 

Ghostbusters fans have wanted a Ghostbusters 3 for several decades.  Ghostbusters 2 failed to deliver in the way we hoped and fans really wanted to see what Bill Murray and the gang could do with a third film to add to the franchise.  Rumors flew around for years and it just never happened.   Instead we get a Reboot that nobody asked for.

I went this weekend to see the original Ghostbusters in the theater again and below are the reasons I think you should just watch the original and skip the new one.   

Bill Murray

Bill Murray was the biggest reason that the original Ghostbusters was so good.  This character was the perfect fit for him.  He is sarcastic and cocky and thinks he is god's gift to the ladies.  
Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis  wrote the film as the perfect vehicle for Bill.   There are so many classic lines in Ghostbusters.   
Seeing the lack luster trailer for the new Ghostbusters that literally only had one funny moment (Leslie Jones stage dive)  which has already been done before.  The new film is missing something. That something is Bill Murray.  Bill Murray was Ghostbusters and I don't see anything from the new trailers that can compare to him in the lead role.  Sure he has a small cameo in the new film--but that isn't what fans wanted.

(I used to have this Poster on my wall growing up)

The Song

I know it was just a rip off of a Huey Lewis song......But I love Huey Lewis and the  original Ghostbusters song by Ray Parker Jr. was a favorite of mine back in the day.  I seriously doubt that they can capture that lightning in a bottle that was the song from the original.  It can't be duplicated in this era of crappy auto tuned music. 

It was great to see Ghostbusters back on the big screen.  Despite some of the visual effects (Especially the devil dogs) looking cheesy by today's standards the humor of the film holds up really well.   I love Ghostbusters!   The dialogue in the film is great.  The original cast has amazing chemistry.   Love Rick Moranis as the nerdy accountant.   The Stay Puff Marshmellow Man reveal is still amazing after all these years and I had never noticed that it was foreshadowed several times throughout the films.  (Look for a bag of Stay Puffs in the self cooking egg scene).

After the film they showed a behind the scenes Sneak peek of the new film.   All that sneak peek did was reinforce that all the new film will give us is modern special effects.   They are just rehashing an already classic film. Even the Stay Puff Marshmellow Man is being rehashed.   Decide for yourself.....I was happy to watch the classic Ghostbusters on the big screen and I don't need to see it redone with a totally new cast.

The OG Ghostbusters Trailer

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Saturday, June 11, 2016

Zoombies 2016 5 out of 10 (Zombie Movie Review # 10)

Zoombies 2016  5 out of 10

One of my favorite SO BAD it is GOOD movies was a low budget Jurassic Park rip off called The Mummy Theme Park.  Theme parks, museums and zoos are great settings for horror movies.   So when I was scanning the guide on the TV and saw this low budget Jurassic Park wannabe I immediately recorded it.  I mean it had a great concept.  A bunch of animals at a Zoo come down with a Zombie like Virus and all hell breaks loose.  I saw that it was an Asylum film which could mean that it was really horrible or that like Sharknado it could be SO BAD it is GOOD.  I guess it was wishful thinking.

I didn't recognize any of the actors at all in this they didn't spend the films budget on that.   Well they definitely didn't spend it on the special effects either.   The movie starts with an infected monkey at the zoo infected some other monkeys and taking out the scientists that were trying to help him.  To cut down on costs the Zoo hadn't actually opened to the public yet  (no need for those costly extras).  The movie basically consists of some interns and a small security staff as the victims of the spreading animal zombie virus that apparently turns the animals into some really bad CGI animals with Grey eyes.   The movie has some lackluster dialogue like "We could be dead and so could all the animals".  I was curious as to where they actually filmed the movie since it looked like some scenes were shot at an old abandoned zoo (not one that was about to open).

The best moments were the CGI Giraffe attack and the attack Koala which the little girl ( SPOILER)  apparently takes a baseball bat to off screen.

Like I said it was a cool concept that was just severely limited by the films budget --which was a shame.  I give them credit for trying....I'd just like to see this concept done right with a lot more money.

One other thing.....The Movie title was weak.....Better titles would have been.   Zombie Zoo.   Death Zoo.  Really Wild Animal Park of the Dead.

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