Haunted by Grief

Electronic voice phenomenonImage via Wikipedia

So this weekend I checked out White Noise 2. White Noise 1 starred Michael Keaton as a guy whose wife dies and soon he gets involved with EVP (Electronic voice phenomenon), an event where people believe ghosts are talking to us by TV or radio.. cuz, you know, everyone gets a broadcast tower on the other side. Anyhoo.. White Noise 1 totally blew.. so I don’t know why I would watch a sequel, but I did. Probably because Nathan Fillon is in it.. you know, the cool cat from Firefly/Serenity. Katee Sackhoff is in it too.. you know, Starbuck from the new Battlestar Galactica series. Maybe that’s why I watched it.. no way the two of them would volunteer to be in a bad flick.. right?

The movie starts off pretty good.. Nathan’s a happily married guy with a wife and kid he absolutely adores. One morning they head off to a diner for breakfast, mom and the boy start feeling ill and some wacko comes over and fills the two of them with lead.. sparing Nathan and then popping himself in the noggin. 3 months pass and Nathan, of course, watches enough home movies to depress himself to the point of suicide. He takes every pill he can find in his home and that’s all she wrote, until his homeboy calls him gets the “I’m sorry, I just killed myself, please leave a message” voicemail greeting and calls 911 just in time to save the guy.

After dying for about 10 seconds, he comes back to life given the new superpower of seeing when someone is going to die. Like anyone, he decides to use his power for good and stops 3 people from dying. So far, I’m actually liking this movie, but then things take a turn.. he starts seeing ghosts, the devil comes into play and it turns into another BS-POS ghost flick with an ending so retarded I had to go outside and pee on the neighbors rose bush to feel normal again.

If the writers had taken two steps to the left this movie would have been awesome, but again, just like with Transformers, Bad Boys 2, and countless other movies.. the writers eat some mushrooms and rush the endings by forcing out the biggest, shiniest turd they can muster and ruin a perfectly good idea.

Transformers – Movie Review

Ah.. what a lovely time to be alive. Movie technology has advanced so much that it’s now possible to bring people back from the dead. I’m sure it won’t be long before we see a new Bruce Lee flick, starring a total CGI Bruce Lee with live actors.. watch for it. Unfortunately, no matter how advanced the technology gets, Writers, as long as they’re human, will continue to pump out crap after crap as long as they have brands to guarantee them viewers. That, my friends, is the tragic case with the Transformers movie.

The actors in this movie are pretty good, believable.. for the most part, and especially considering that they had to imagine the machines acting out their parts. The action scenes.. wow! The CGI effects are amazing.. I read somewhere that it took 2 days for the computers to render each second of the movie! Incredible stuff. That’s all the good. The bad?

Why is BumbleBee a Camaro? What’s that? oh.. cuz Chevy pays more than VW? ah.. oh, that explains the Nokia and Mountain Dew transformers too.. I didn’t realize I was watching a 2 hour ad. I’m guessing it didn’t cost too much to make this movie if you take in all the advertising money they got from Nokia, Apple, Microsoft, Mountain Dew, Chevy, GMC, and God knows what other product placement missed my eye. Quiz Time!

  • How do you contain a transformer?
    • Energy Field?.. no, silly.. COLD! Yes, it’s true.. Robot Aliens that travel thru space will hibernate in the cold.. ya.. look it up.
  • Why are the Decepticons on Earth?
    • If you answered “To find energy because they depleted Cybertron’s resources” then you’re wrong. Apparently, their most precious possesion, the giant cube from the Cube movies, somehow got lost and ended up on Earth.. so Megatron came here all by his lonesome to find it.. he’s such a boy scout. Luckily for us, Megatron is an idiot and doesn’t know how magnetic fields on planets work and so he crash landed into some ice.. which, of course, made him hibernate.. yay!
  • Who’s the biggest pussy in the Autobots?
    • Duh.. Optimus Prime! I mean.. sure, he has a bad-ass sword, and sure.. he’s the highest rated Autobot, but put him up against Megatron and watch him squirm! WTF?!
  • Cube?
    • So the main star of this film is a Cube, also known as the “all spark”. What kind of goofy name is that?! Anyway, here are my favorite cube moments:
      • The cube is humongous.. but luckily it transforms into an itty-bitty travel-size cube.. just for you!
      • Rule #1: Any electronic item the cube touches will come to life.
      • Rule #2: Any robot that touches it will be healed.
      • Broken Rule #1: The feds are supporting this cube with metal frames, but nothing is coming to life?
      • Broken Rule #2: The little boombox robot (WTF?!) is broken, touches the cube and is now totally fixed.. BumbleBee is missing his legs and touches the cube to no effect. What’s that? “Maybe it doesn’t work when it’s in portable-mode!” .. ah, but when Spike, I mean.. whatever the kids name is, does a roll on the ground and the cube touches the ground for 1 second it makes robots out of an XBox 360 and a Mountain Dew machine? Shut your mouth!

Wow.. sorry.. I am all over the place on this, aren’t I? Here’s my summary: This could have been the best movie EVER! There was NO need to change the core of Transformers.. none. The writers of this flick are OBVIOUSLY not Transformers fans.. if they were it would have been awesome! Instead, we’re left with a great action movie with lots of great characters and action scenes, but a story so horrible and flawed that, if you have a brain, will make you want to stick the all-spark into your own chest. This movie gets a solid 5 out of 10.

1408 – Movie Review

This 4th of July, K and I took a few minutes of our lives (94 minutes, to be exact) to head to our local cinema and view 1408, a thriller based on a Stephen King short story. Once the film was over, I was elated to see the difference of opinion between myself and K. She didn’t hate it, but rather felt that it was time wasted.. viewing the movie was just filler in her day.. much like I felt about Ocean’s 13, I suppose.. not something horrible.. but not something to write home about either.. just “blah”.

I myself, however, found this movie very enjoyable. Sure, I like Stephen King stories, John Cusak, and scary movies.. but that’s not so much why I liked this flick. As I mentioned to her, I have several reasons for liking this movie. FYI, I like to spoil movies for you.. so stop reading if you hate that sort of thing.

I’m currently reading the book “Godel, Escher, Bach: an Eternal Golden Braid”, or the G.E.B. as it’s also known.  It’s a thinking mans book.. one which came to mind while watching this movie. The book is about patterns of loops that have occurred throughout history and life in general.. this movie has loops.. which is a reason I liked it.. It’s relevant to something I’m currently reading.

Occasionally, I’ll be having a bad dream.. a dream so bad that it eventually wakes me.. much to my relief. Soon I fall back to sleep and start a whole new dream.. a happy dream.. when suddenly a door busts open in my troubled mind and I’m sucked back into the original nightmare! This movie is such a nightmare.. another reason I liked it.. I can empathize.

The Suffering..  a great game for PC’s, and consoles I’m fairly sure. A story about a haunted prison. For some reason, that too popped into my mind while watching this movie. I loved the game, and as I watched this flick I shared in the emotion of the main character as I would pull on my memories of playing The Suffering and feeling scared, trapped, and helpless. This movie pulled emotions from my memories of a GAME! ..another reason I liked it.

Did the movie have bad parts to it? Certainly! However, as I sit here trying to think of one.. I cannot. They were apparently so minute that I did not store them in my thoughts. Perhaps upon viewing it again they may stand out more.. but if I would have to rate this movie I would give it an 8 out of 10.

I’m quite proud of myself.. I didn’t manage to give away to much of it.  🙂

Live Free or Die Hard – Movie Review

I don’t know why (trailers), but I was actually looking forward to seeing this movie (trailers). This really perks my curiosity because I really liked the first Die Hard, but the other 2.. for lack of a better word ..sucked. But somehow, someTHING drew me to this flick.. was it the fact that the dude from the PC vs Mac commercials is in it? Nah! I don’t really care for him as an actor.. even if Waiting was funny as heck. Maybe it was my perverted human nature.. wanting to see the 132 year old Bruce Willis pull off an action flick without a wheelchair? Maybe I’m just a geek and wanted to see a flick about hackers taking out the US.. since China is working on such a plan as I type this? Maybe I just got a thing for hot asian chicks? Who knows.. whatever made me go see this.. this.. “action” flick.. well.. on to the ProCons!

Pros

  • Bruce is still fit!
    • It’s amazing that even though Bruce Willis is aged, he still manages to believably pull off this movie! I went into it expecting to hear a handful of Danny Glover/Lethal Weapon-esque “I’m too old for this shit”-lines all over this movie.. but thankfully they didn’t play too much on his age.. I believe there’s only one passing reference to his age. Kudos to Bruce!
  • Awesome action scenes
    • The actions scenes did well to keep me shaking my leg in anticipation. I’m very picky (see my Fantastic Four review), but I didn’t find myself tearing this movie apart.. guess they kept my mind on other things.
  • Decent Story
    • Hackers take out the systems that keep America running smooth.. lucky for us, Bruce Willis and the Mac kid can fix it all. It’s a story that we should all think about for a second.. China is building up its’ hacker network.. the Dept. of Homeland Security has been hacked 800 times this year alone.. we grow more and more tied to computers and networks to function.. what if this really DID happen? Imagine hurricane Katrina.. but all over the U.S. ..spooky.
  • Hot Asian chick!
    • What?! You don’t like hot Asian chicks?
  • Funny one-liners
    • Witty witty.. oh so pretty! Anyone who knows me knows how sarcastic I can be.. how I just looove turning a phrase on someone.. the same reason I get a kick out of Ask a Ninja.. one-liner’s are thrown about this movie like confetti during New Year’s celebrations.. not just by Bruce Willis either.. it seems everyone gets a chance to dish out some witty banter. That’s the way.. uhuh uhuh ..I like it!

Cons

  • Crazy action scenes
    • I know, I know.. I said I liked the action scenes.. but c’mon.. the Semi-VS-Harrier scene was just a little off the wall. I still liked it though.

Well there you have it. I really liked this movie.. I would even say I liked it more than the first one! If you liked Die Hard and you’re looking for a good action flick.. this one should do you good!

Fantastic 4 – Rise Of the Yadda yadda – Movie Review

Note: This contains spoilers.. you’ve been warned.

Ok, so I ended up seeing Fantastic Four – Rise of the Silver Surfer. I wasn’t looking forward to it that much as the first one didnt leave me all giddy inside, but hey.. maybe Jessica Alba gets nekked in this one. Once I saw the flick, I had a hard time deciding whether or not I should review it. I have a hard time reviewing Sci-Fi flicks because I love science. When I see a flick like this I try to find logic in things that are illogical and it frustrates me to no end. This movie did a great job frustrating me. Let the ProCons begin:

Pros:

  • Jessica Alba is hot and was even nekked!!! *see cons
  • Decent CG effects, not perfect.. but decent.

Cons:

  • Jessica Alba wasn’t nekked! When she was it was all Computer Generated! Poop!
  • Dr. Doom comes back from the dead and he wants to go surfing?
    • Dr. Doom comes back from the dead, stronger than ever.. and he wants Silver Surfer’s surf board? Sorry, but the good Dr. is very much into theatrics, hence the mask and cape.. the last thing he would do is go surfing around town.. especially when earth is about to be destroyed.
  • Johnny Storm is an astronaut?
    • Tidbit #12312.03, just because you can light your skin on fire does not mean you can survive the cold, radio-active, vacuum that is space.
  • Reed Richards is not just smart.. he’s a mechanic too!
    • Mr. Fantastic may be smart.. but I highly doubt the man can assemble a Hemi-Powered hovercraft all by his lonesome.. without ANYONE noticing? C’mon now. Also, Mr. Richards is sooo smart, he automagically knows how to use Johnny Storm’s powers when he acquires them.. unlike his ditzy soon-to-be wife who floats around like a moron on fire.
  • Did you say Hemi-Powered Hovercraft?
    • Yes kids, you heard me right.. Dodge got some showtime by sponsoring the F4’s special vehicle. A Hemi-powered hovercraft that isn’t big enough to house the smallest Hemi engine in the world, yet manages to fly at break-neck speeds with no forward thrust to mention. But wait, there’s more.. this great undersized, overpowered vehicle is capable of splitting into 3 smaller vehicles that travel just as fast?! Damn! Reed’s a frickin genius! ..oh wait, he is.
  • Instant flight certs for all!
    • While we’re on the topic of this hovercrap, there’s a scene.. the 1st time anyone has even seen the frickin vehicle ..where the hovercraft splits into 3 smaller vehicles.. all of a sudden EVERYONE is a top-gun ace!?! Um.. didn’t I just see a nekked Sue Storm trying to learn how to float? But she can handle flight controls? It must be powered by a wiimote.. it must be THAT intuitive! I want one!
  • Alien Protocol 101
    • Can anyone tell me what the Army would do if it found an alien? I know, step one.. take him to Russia and interrogate him using human torture methods. No wait.. I believe we might have to know how the alien’s biology works to do that.. wouldnt we? I mean, what if punching them in the face is how they mate? eww.

I’m sure I could go on and on with things that drove me nuts on this flick.. but I’m starting to get tired. I’m sure if you’re a die-hard F4 fan then you’ll love this movie. Unfortunately, a geek like myself.. who thinks scientifically, will have a hard time shutting off the brain to enjoy the fireworks.

Spider-Man 3 – The Movie – The Review

First off, my apologies to any Spidey fans that may get pissed off because I have an opinion that differs from theirs.. Sorry, but I just can’t get into Spidey like you want him to get into you. Also note this review may contain spoilers.. so there you go.. you’ve been warned.

I wonder why directors, movie studios, whomever it is.. decide that it’s reeeeally important to lure the breast-bearing beings into the theaters to see action movies.. no, I’m not talking about fat D&D-playing IT nerds, I’m talking about girls! This movie is one big soap opera with a few minutes of action. Luckily the action is so good that it almost makes it worth waiting for.. almost.

There’s nothing I love more than going to a Spider-Man flick only to spend my time wondering if Ross and Rachel are going to make it.. no wait, wrong group of friends.. I meant MJ and Peter. That’s one thing I loved about the movie 300.. sure, there was a love story.. but if you removed it you would have lost 5 minutes of movie. In this grand drama, if you were to remove the love story you would end up with about 15 minutes of film. WTF?!

Well, here are my ProCons.. for your disgust.

Pros

  • Nice CG
    • I guess soon I’ll have to stop putting this one on movie reviews since they seem to be getting the whole CG thing down. However it is worth noting that most of the time I found the CG believable.
  • Nice Cameos
    • What’s a Marvel-based movie without good ol’ Stan Lee showing his mug. It was also nice to see my favoritest actor Bruce Campbell in there… which is pretty much required since him and Director Sam Raime both started out long ago on the Evil Dead/Army of Darkness movies.. But Bruce does lighten the movie up during a scene that’s probably supposed to make people cry.
  • Nice chicks
    • During the scene in which Peter Parker goes Emo, they sure show a lot of hot lookin girls.. I enjoyed that, even if I did have to put up with Peter’s hip thrusts during all of it.. bleah! ..but mmm-giirrrls!
  • Nice action scenes
    • My biggest complaint for the TMNT movie (there were many) was that the action scenes weren’t properly directed. It was hard to see the fights with the weird camera angles, lighting, etc.. This movie does not suffer from that! I’m very pleased with the layout of the fight and action scenes.. bravo! (well.. there is this one cheesy scene where you see through the eyes of the venom goo.. it’s sooo 1970’s horror-flick-like)

Cons

  • Super slow extra long love story turbo ultra III
    • If I were to go on about the slow drawn out love story I would be depriving you of the enjoyment you will get from wanting to blow out your own brains during it. So go see it and complain for yourself.
  • Bad voice-overs
    • Um.. MJ’s a singer.. and well.. she can’t sing in real life so they dubbed her singing during the flick.. which is normal, BUT at least try to get someone who sounds SOMETHING like the actress?! It’s so painfully obvious it’s not her.. ugh! “That was poorly handled.”
  • MJ’s a whore!
    • So MJ gets jealous that PP gets all the fame and she sucks as a singer.. sooo what’s a girl to do? Slutty ho.
    • Then, THEN she breaks up with PP because Harry bashes her head into the wall and tells her to.
    • Then, THEN she’s all Harry’s best friend again after all that shizzle!!
    • She’s just a ho.. back off! (the previous rant may or may not be influenced by prior experiences)
  • Peter Parker goes Emo and joins Fall Out Boy
    • This scene will have you laughing.. or wishing you found it funny.. it’s truly scary to think the Venom symbiote will turn you Emo if you get some on you… sends chills up my spine.
  • Thomas Haden Church is not a bad guy!
    • Typecasting is bad.. but I’ve seen this guy in so many comedies that I just cant take him serious as a bad guy.. he’ll always be Lowell from Wings to me.
  • Venom falls from ?
    • To give an example as to how much background was disclosed of Venoms origin..
  • Spidey needs a velcro mask!
    • Ok.. his mask comes off like 100,000 times in this flick.. WTF? Um.. especially in front of news crews which have cameras which have zoom which they prove works by zooming into MJ’s face while she’s a million feet in the air. Velcro Spidey, Velcro.

Well that’s my take on the whole thing. Overall.. I like it.. but next time I’m gonna roll a fatty prior to watching it. I hope you enjoyed my review, if not please send an email to my Indian friend Suqaqok Enswalo.. he’d be happy to hear from you.

Hot Fuzz – Movie Review

Fans of Shaun of the Dead rejoice! Never seen that movie? Well, regardless.. WATCH THIS ONE!! This movie is definitely “off the f**kin chain“!! 2 hours of almost non-stop laughter and action. A movie that makes you think it’s taking itself seriously while constantly barraging you with witty one-liners, movie references, and scenes that will have you clapping or crying tears of joy.

A story of an over-achieving London cop who gets reassigned to a little town with no action.. or so it seems. It includes everything you’ve ever seen in any other action film.. explosions, car chases, guns.. lots of guns.. blood, bullets, and bodies.. and the occasional swan?

Excellent direction, characters, and retakes on scenes introduced in Shaun of the Dead. Even after two hours we all sat through the credits just hoping that we could have just a little bit more.. we just didn’t want it to end.

I cannot say enough good things about this movie.. you definitely must watch it, and I’ll definitely be grabbing a copy as soon as I can.

300 – The Movie – The Review

“No Retreat, No Surrender”, Remember that.. you’ll likely hear that 1 or 15 times in this movie. 300 – The movie, based on Frank Miller’s 300 – The comic book, based on the Battle of Thermopylae.. an historical event. So I guess this movie is Faction, part fact – part fiction. Much like the movies Titanic and Pearl Harbor. My take on it, I liked it and I’ll most likely watch it again. Here’s my list of ProCons:

Pros:

  • Good CGI
    • Taking into consideration that this movie was filmed almost entirely in a studio and the background are mostly computer-rendered is very impressive. It is executed almost perfectly as I did not find myself “aware” of the CGI-ness of it all. Very rare, especially for someone as picky as I.
  • Bullet-time death scenes
    • There’s nothing like watching a spear go through a poor lad in slow-motion! The CGI effects were amazing and believable!
  • Exaggerated Audio
    • The tiniest sounds were amplified and granted copious amounts of bass. Watching the main character perform such a mundane task such as placing his spear gently in the ground while having it sound like he placed a 5 ton boulder onto the ground was quite.. cool.

Cons:

  • Speed
    • Although I enjoyed the movie, a lot of it is presented through a narrative and I found myself wishing they would “get on with it, already!”. This made me “time-aware”, which is never a good thing in a movie.. it should engross you and not let you slip back into the theater.
  • Bad Visuals
    • As I mentioned above, most of this movie is computer-rendered. The majority of the time is was very well done, but on several occasions it seemed rather rushed. One scene in particular had arrows sticking out of a guy’s chest, as he moved around, the arrows moved with him.. but it looked very fake which took a tad bit away from my enjoyment. Of course, I’m very picky when it comes to CGI (even picking out the .00001 second scene in Shreck where his eyeball protrudes through his eyelid!) so this will probably go unnoticed by most. The next thing I wasn’t too keen on was the lack of color. I know this is Frank Miller’s style, much like in Sin City, but I’ve been watching Rome on HBO a lot and I’ve come to expect bright colors when visualizing events of that era. Again, I’m a picky purple people eater.. so most viewers will actually like Frank’s visualization technique.
  • No Retreat, No Surrender
    • One more time.. No Retreat, No Surrender. Any chance we can stick that into the script a few more times? I get it, the Spartans never retreat and never surrender.. but every time you say it, it reminds me of a certain martial arts film.. what was it called again? Oh ya, “No Retreat, No Surrender“!!!

There you have it, folks! Thanks for reading, now let the review-reviewing begin!