Posts Tagged ‘DTV’

The DoubleHeader You’ve All Been Waiting For! Vern Reviews STARSHIP TROOPERS 3 And ROGUE!!

Monday, August 4th, 2008

I’ve been sort of looking forward to this new STARSHIP TROOPERS, and if you got a problem with that too bad because I’ve gotten enough “are you gonna review Starship Troopers 3?” emails to know that we can take you. Ed Neumeier takes over as director this time, which means the satirical tone remains since this is the guy who wrote all three STARSHIP TROOPERS as well as ROBOCOP. And, uh, ANACONDAS: THE HUNT FOR THE BLOOD ORCHID. I didn’t know that, I just found that out on IMDB. Hmmm. I had not considered watching that one. This changes everything. This could be the big one.

If you saw STARSHIP TROOPERS 2: HERO OF THE FEDERATION you may or may not remember that it was pretty different from the first one. They scaled it down for DTV, making it into mostly a one-location siege kind of story and incorporating smaller bugs that implant themselves in people’s brains or something. The good part is it was directed by the effects legend Phil Tippett so it ended up having the best effects I’ve seen in a DTV movie. (read the rest of this shit…)

Army of One

Sunday, July 27th, 2008

Recently I was discussing the upcoming James Bond movie with some buddies. I was joking that the trailer should say “from the director of FINDING NEVERLAND.” That dude’s movies are all over the map, but nothing ever hinted that he would end up directing a 007 movie. One of my buddies said that it didn’t really matter that he didn’t do action because usually the action in Bond movies is shot by a second unit guy named Vic Armstrong.

(I looked it up, and Armstrong actually hasn’t worked on the Daniel Craig ones, but he was stunt coordinator and/or 2nd unit director for DIE ANOTHER DAY, THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH, TOMORROW NEVER DIES and NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN and stunt double for 3 other Bond movies.) (read the rest of this shit…)

Vern asks Why Watch Dark Knight when you could be watching…

Sunday, July 20th, 2008

Well it looks like this week is Nerd Hanukkah, when everybody freaks out about the new Batman movie and then they go to San Diego and they seem to open presents every day. I’m not clear what exactly it is they do there but it apparently involves comic books and occasionally Halle Berry or Charlize Theron or somebody. There will be alot of exciting posters passed out or something and lots of exciting news will be broken about some movie or other. You’ll be hearing about your star treks and your hobbits and your Iron Man part 2s and what not. But there is one sequel that you won’t be hearing jack shit about there unless you are currently sitting there reading this article. Ladies and gentlemen, I am proud to announce that I got the exclusive inside scoop on a movie and the title alone is gonna knock your god damn socks off. Your socks are gonna tear right through your fuckin Captain America boots, fly across the room and land on a table where somebody from some Dr. Who spinoff is signing autographs.

There’s only one thing to do, I gotta spit it out: THE ART OF WAR II: BETRAYAL. Starring WESLEY GOD DAMN SNIPES. (read the rest of this shit…)


Tuesday, June 3rd, 2008

I know what you’re thinking. THE ONION MOVIE? Are you fucking kidding me? They’ve run out of ’70s slasher movies, TV series, action figures, video games and board games to turn into movies, now they’re moving on to the fucking produce department? Well to be fair onions are a vegetable with a rich history. In Caananite Bronze Age settlements, traces of onion remains were found dating back to 5000 BC. There is Biblical evidence (specifically the Book of Numbers) indicating that onions were grown in Ancient Egypt. In fact, to the ancient Egyptians (SPOILER) their concentric rings represented eternal life. So I think with a visionary artistic team behind the camera and a decent budget an onion movie could be a real eye-opener. Unfortunately this movie has nothing to do with vegetables at all, it is based on that websight The Onion with the fake news articles and the movie reviews and what not.

I watch more direct-to-video crap than the average citizen, but even I usually draw the line at direct-to-video comedy. If MEET THE SPARTANS can get a theatrical release and you can’t then I’m not sure I trust you, even if a renowned institution such as a National Lampoon’s or an American Pie Presents is willing to put its name on the line on your behalf. In this case The Onion is only putting its name on the line due to contractual obligation. Some of their former editors wrote this thing back in 2003 but they and the directors disowned it years ago and it was sitting on the shelf until recently when somebody was moving some boxes around trying to find some of their old yearbooks or something and their ass bumped it off the shelf and it lands in stores Tuesday. (read the rest of this shit…)


Thursday, April 3rd, 2008

I try to watch alot of DTV movies, but I don’t always succeed. Most of you have probaly never watched them, and you may assume that they are very good and enjoyable, and capable of adding meaning to one’s life. However, this is almost never the case. In the world of DTV filmmaking it seems pretty clear that nobody gives a shit. Most of them are trying to just reach 90 minutes and throw the shit on a shelf. You could argue that more effort goes into pornography, since some poor girl has to take it in the ass. That’s elbow grease.

So this is an unusual couple of days because I’ve managed to watch a bunch of DTVs and all of them were actually okay. So okay, in fact, that I was able to watch them in two or less sittings. In this world that’s almost a miracle. Either that or I have somehow increased my attention span overnight. (read the rest of this shit…)

The Shepherd: Border Patrol

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008

I don’t know if Sylvester Stallone forced them to step up their game, or if they all got together and had a meeting and decided to start putting more effort into this shit or what but lately all the old ’80s and ’90s action stars who are in exile on the small screen have started doing a better job. Seagal’s had a couple good ones in a row, Dolph’s have been watchable, Van Damme had that movie where he was a heroin junkie. None of these are yet matching the full potential of DTV, but at least they’re getting there. The latest in the trend is Van Damme’s double-titled THE SHEPHERD: BORDER PATROL.

I will go ahead and give the credit for this one not to Van Damme but to the director Isaac Florentine. I will have to investigate the guy’s works further but if he has anymore as good as this one and UNDISPUTED II then I think he must be one of the top DTV directors. He’s an Israeli martial artist who came to the U.S. and directed POWER RANGERS shows for years and then got into DTV movies like US SEALS II. And as far as the DTV directors go he has a real good style. His movies have hard-hitting martial arts scenes that are well staged, he uses some energetic but not hyperactive editing and camera angles to keep things moving and he has some odd touches here that suggest a sense of humor. (read the rest of this shit…)

Vern’s Been PISTOL WHIPPED By Seagal!

Friday, February 29th, 2008

Hey, everyone. ”Moriarty” here.

Vern’s my hero. If I could be anybody I wanted to be when I grow up, I’d choose to be Vern. His new book is one reason. This review is another.

This April marks (for death) the 20th anniversary of ABOVE THE LAW. Can you believe we’re that old? Two decades since Steven Seagal’s debut, arriving on the action movie scene fully-formed, already a star, already with his iconic look (well, he didn’t have the ponytail quite yet), already with his shadowy CIA past, his intense knowledge of Asian tradition, and his drive to take on the corrupt and throw them through panes of glass.

Alot has stayed the same in those 20 years, but alot has changed. He got bigger. His movies got bigger (UNDER SIEGE), then smaller (THE PATRIOT). He moved from the big screen to the DVD. By my way of thinking he’s gone through three major periods of his career and is now late in the DTV Era. (read the rest of this shit…)

Undisputed II: Last Man Standing

Wednesday, February 20th, 2008

First of all I gotta note that it’s weird this movie exists at all. Walter Hill’s prison/boxing movie UNDISPUTED is not exactly a title that appears in everyone’s home library. It was not a box office hit, it did not catch on huge on video, it does not hold a nostalgic place in anyone’s heart, it did not inspire other movies or hip hop videos or launch a catch phrase. I think I know one guy besides me who saw it, he liked it, I didn’t. He hasn’t seen part 2. I never saw it until now. There’s your audience.

The original got a brief theatrical release, the sequel was straight-to-video. Maybe they could’ve gotten Wesley Snipes to return, since he’s stuck in straight-to-video lately. Instead it stars Michael Jai White – you know, the guy who was cut out of KILL BILL who everybody on the internet thought should’ve replaced Wesley in BLADE: THE SERIES. So that’s cool. Except Wesley’s character is not mentioned – White is playing Ving Rhames’s villain character George “The Iceman” Chambers. (read the rest of this shit…)

Until Death

Wednesday, February 20th, 2008

It’s always exciting to hear that a Van Damme or a Dolph or a Seagal is taking a risk, so here’s an exciting one. Jean-Claude Van Damme plays a heroin addicted, womanizing, fucked up cop. (He’s not totally dirty though, he won’t take bribes.) Most of the other cops kind of hate him, especially the guy who blames him for the death of his fiancee in an undercover operation. Van Damme’s wife is pregnant from her new man. And his former partner (Stephen Rea, believe it or not) is the crime kingpin he just can’t seem to bust.

Eventually Van Damme gets shot in the head and goes into a coma. When he wakes up he’s sort of born again and tries to make amends. He gives his settlement to a schlub he got kicked off the force. He stops shooting heroin. His wife is taking care of him while he recovers and they start to repair their relationship. If you haven’t figured it out yet this is a genuine drama, not an action movie. He doesn’t do the splits once. (read the rest of this shit…)

Vern Calls URBAN JUSTICE A Masterpiece!

Saturday, October 20th, 2007

Hey, everyone. ”Moriarty” here.

I can’t believe my weekend includes a brand-new Vern review for a brand-new Steven Seagal film. And, no, he doesn’t actually call it a masterpiece. But he does seem somewhat excited… and with good reason. He’s got something to announce. Something… oh, you’ll see.

I must have done something really right this week to deserve this, eh?

starring Steven Seagal


You know, there are movies, and then there are Steven Seagal movies. And you know what else? There are Steven Seagal movies, and then there are direct-to-video Steven Seagal movies. Seagal has made 13 DTV movies since his last theatrical, HALF PAST DEAD, came out in 2002. In 2003, 2006 and 2007 he was able to release three movies a year. For 2008 he already has three in progress. In 2005 he actually did four. So this is a guy who shows up in your video store almost as often as the seasons change. Which makes his DTV Era a god damn force of nature. Almost. (read the rest of this shit…)