Archive for the ‘Family’ Category

Speed Racer

Wednesday, May 14th, 2008

If the old Speed Racer cartoon had a baby with a Hot Wheels commercial in the back of a candy store and fed it magic mushrooms every day for breakfast, then when it turned 18 that baby would legally become this movie. What I mean is it’s clearly the product of its upbringing: silly cartoon plot, Skittles color palette, cartoon physics, monkey wearing clothes, etc. But it wants to become a man, so it rebels. It confuses little kids and their parents with a complex non-linear structure intercutting a present day race with backstory and a flashback race and overlapping past and present races within one shot. And instead of trying to stop some evil plot to destroy the world like you’re supposed to do in this type of movie, SPEED RACER helps an investigative body stop a corrupt corporation from manipulating the stock market by fixing races. (It does not mention the tax disputes from PHANTOM MENACE.)

The result is a movie that people want to beat up. The Wachowski Brothers until now have only directed 4 movies, 3 of them THE MATRIX and the other one just to prove to the studio they could direct THE MATRIX, so this is almost like their sophomore slump. It’s an absurdly ridiculous and/or ridiculously absurd, kind of alienating and weird Wachowski version of a kiddie movie that already seems destined to lose the studio a ton of money and either force the Wachowskis to try something smaller or safer or to go away and not direct for ten years. Also I kind of liked it. (read the rest of this shit…)

Enchanted

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2008

I like to think I’m a pretty tough individual, even on a cellular level. So I don’t usually watch movies like this and I don’t usually get sick. A year or two ago I got some crud that really knocked me out, so while I was laying there a useless husk of my regular self I decided that God had opened a window – a window of opportunity for me to watch KILL BILL VOLUME 1 and VOLUME 2 in a row. The movie seemed even better in one sitting and I was healed the next day. Thanks God. You got good taste in movies.

So the next year when I got real sick I did the same thing, with the same success. Only trouble is when I got sick again this month and it was the worst I had in years. My KILL BILL treatment had been too recent, I didn’t know if it would work and I didn’t want to overdo it and create a KILL BILL-resistant supervirus. So I watched a bunch of other DVDs I had laying around. (read the rest of this shit…)

Cars

Tuesday, June 27th, 2006

As you know I’m not one for the cartoons but somehow I ended up seeing this new one called CARS. What CARS is about is cars. However they are not any ordinary type of car like you’ve ever seen before, they are living cars. And when I say that I am not even talking about a Knight Rider or Herbie the Love Bug type of scenario here, I am talking about an entire society devoid of human life, but dominated by living, feeling cars with weird eyeballs on their windshields. They can make gestures and they can use their tires sort of like hands, and they have jobs, etc. Even the insects of this world are cars, but there are regular non-car plants.

These cars have not only created a civilization, but their civilization has been around long enough that the good old days are gone. The story is about Lightning McQueen, who is apparently not named after Steve McQueen despite his brave service to the cause of cars in LE MANS and BULLITT. Thanks alot, assholes. Lightning is a hotshot race car, basically a NASCAR star without a driver. Because he’s a stubborn egotistical asswipe of a car he fucks up and blows his huge lead making the big race a three way tie. One of the other racers is played by Michael Keaton but he looks like the Burt Reynolds of cars. Anyway Lightning has to go to California for another race and because he’s a celebrity he doesn’t even bother to drive there himself, he goes inside his friend, a Mack truck played by Cliff from Cheers. Basically, he is inside his friend’s ass, but you can’t completely blame him because the inside of his friend’s ass looks like some kind of luxury apartment. (read the rest of this shit…)

How’d we get so lucky? Vern is back again with a review of EIGHT BELOW!!!

Friday, February 10th, 2006

Ahoy, squirts! Quint here about to head off to bed so I can be chipper for tomorrow’s flicks at the Santa Barbara Film Festival, but I noticed another review by our own outlaw Vern trickle in via this fancy electronic mail box. I couldn’t help but immediately read it… laugh out load at least a dozen times and then post it up for the rest of you folks to enjoy. Without any further ado, here is the man himself!

Howdy fellas,

I’m only watching number movies this week. You saw my review of 2001 MANIACS. I’m planning on seeing THE THREE BURIALS OF (whoever it is, Miguel Arteta or somebody) but there was this screening of Walt Disney’s new picture EIGHT BELOW INSPIRED BY A TRUE STORY, so I went to that first. This is a dog movie, and usually a movie like this would have a trailer set to either

a) “Bad to the Bone” or
b) “Atomic Dog”

and then the poster would say, “Every Dog Has His Snow Day” or some stupid shit like that, and the dogs would be wearing sunglasses and possibly giving a thumbs up, if dogs had thumbs. (read the rest of this shit…)

Roll Bounce

Thursday, November 17th, 2005

This is one of those movies that on the cover should have a big quote from Roger Ebert or somebody saying “Seriously, not that bad!” I’m not gonna try to convince anybody that ROLL BOUNCE is great but it is actually very well made and watchable for a movie about kids rollerskating. You can face that fact or not, I don’t give a fuck, but there it is. ROLL BOUNCE is kind of good.

Now if you are new around here you may not be familiar with me, I should probaly specify that I am not some pedophile or somebody, and personally I have never reviewed a movie about kids rollerskating before. ROLLERBALL was strictly adults and so was DERBY. I’m a first timer here for this type of material is what I’m saying, and don’t worry I won’t make it a habit. (read the rest of this shit…)

Robots

Friday, March 11th, 2005

What this one is about is robots. It’s a movie about robots, so they called it ROBOTS. You see how that works? Movie is about robots = title is ROBOTS. That is the level of imagination and innovation we are working with here in America circa 2005. Ain’t life beautiful.

Before I go on, I gotta warn everybody, just because a movie is in IMAX doesn’t mean it’s in 3-D. I saw GHOSTS OF THE ABYSS and POLAR EXPRESS there and the 3-D made those worthwhile, and I swear on THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST: RENAILED that is the one and only reason why I went to see this ROBOTS. Now obviously I would prefer if a 3-D movie was a horror or a part 3, something where either a shark or an eyeball is gonna pop out of the screen at some time. But I have accepted that now 3-D is for kids movies only so a man’s gotta settle. I didn’t mind payin my ten bucks but then when I walked into the theater and there was no goggles, I realized that I was finally suffering the consequences of my ignorance about Imax. I knew this day would come. ROBOTS is not in 3-D. Sheeit. (read the rest of this shit…)

The Next Karate Kid

Thursday, March 3rd, 2005

Two time Oscar winner Hilary Swank, hailing from Bellingham, Washington, stars in the explosive finale to the Karate Kid quadilogy. This one was Swank’s first starring role and came out in 1994, when movies were just as crappy but not quite as funny as their ’80s counterparts. The director is Christopher Cain, father of Dean Cain and director of The Amazing Panda Adventure.

Swank plays Julie, a pouty, sullen teenage girl who lives unhappily with her grandma after the death of her parents. Anything anybody says to Julie, she takes offense and throws a hissy fit. You know how old people are, they try to be nice but they don’t really understand where your teenage mind is coming from, so they offer you some lemon bars or something and you’re like “GOD DAMN IT WHY CAN’T YOU JUST LEAVE ME ALONE?!” and run out of the room crying. So then Julie goes in and stabs grandma to death in her sleep, while jerkin off. Or was that a different movie? I can’t remember. (read the rest of this shit…)

Finding Neverland

Saturday, January 29th, 2005

FINDING NEVERLAND is one of those movies that feels kind of like a remedial imagination class they force you to take on Saturdays because you fucked up. You may not know this, it tells you, but it turns out imagination is important and magical and all that kind of crap. Johnny Depp plays J.M. Barrie, the writer of Peter Pan. The movie starts the same as ED WOOD, he’s the writer of some flop play that the audience already hates literally about 2 seconds after it starts. It’s the first line of dialogue and a dude is already asleep.

So J.M. needs to imagination up his life somehow to inspire him to write Peter Pan, and luckily he runs into a widow (Kate Winslet) and her spunky kids (a bunch of kids) while he’s walking his novelty oversized dog. Next thing you know he’s hanging out with the kids, dressing up in silly costumes and imagining stuff with them. They’re still pretty bummed about their dad dying so he has to teach them to have a childlike sense of wonder, etc. (read the rest of this shit…)

The Polar Express

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

THE POLAR EXPRESS 3-D IMAX SPOOKARAMA

A few years back I wrote a piece called FINAL FANTASY: THE SPIRITS WITHIN (working title: BORING: THE MOVIE). It is available on this web sight as well as in my collection 5 On the Outside. In the piece I talked about the wrongness of computer animators trying to create photorealistic human characters. I argued that no matter how real they looked they would never look completely real, because they wouldn’t be able to walk quite right, or have a human soul, etc. I guess I didn’t mention it in that piece but there was a scene in the movie where two realistic human characters kissed, and it was like watching mannequins go at it.

(For your information, there’s a porno called REAL DOLL: THE MOVIE where pornographic professionals like Ron Jeremy stick their penises inside ten thousand dollar silicone sex dummies. That movie is disturbing in a different way from FINAL FANTASY because the dolls are not moving and their faces don’t look alive. So it looks like these guys are having their way with dead bodies. But picture two of the dolls going at it with no animate objects involved. Then picture a rated PG version of that. That’s the scene in FINAL FANTASY, I guess. It’s not natural.) (read the rest of this shit…)

Garfield

Sunday, November 7th, 2004

the asshole cat

Man, what a fuckin week. On Tuesday Bush got either “re”-elected or re-“elected,” and I’ve been stumbling around muttering to myself ever since. Stabbing at my porridge with my spoon, staring blankly out the window, mouthing the word “why” to myself over and over again. One thing I know, there are some things in this world that just cannot be explained. Sometimes bad things happen to good people. Sometimes people vote for a president that couldn’t be trusted to put on his own pants. And sometimes a guy gets the blue state blues, walks around town in a daze, suddenly finds himself at home having rented the movie “GARFIELD,” not really knowing how or why. I know for a fact this happens because you’re lookin at the guy who it happened to. Me. It was weird.

What this is is a movie based on the popular comic strip from the 1980s called Garfield. Like all comic strips it is not funny and about a talking animal. This is a cat called Garfield who is orange. The thing about Garfield, he is real fucking fat, he eats lasagna. That’s funny because real cats eat cat food, but this one also eats lasagna. Also he says “I hate Mondays” at the beginning although this does not turn out to be important. But it is that sort of detailed characterization that makes him, you know, Garfield. I guess. (read the rest of this shit…)