Saturday, March 28, 2015

Lou Diamond Phillips Weekend: Bats, Hangman, Red Water and Malevolent.

Lou Diamond Phillips is one of those actors that somehow is condemned to star in B movies even when he has already proven himself to being capable of doing so much better. This weekend I will be watching and reviewing films he features in (that I skipped on in the past) to see if I can prove my point that he deserves better recognition.


First on the list is Bats.


Bats (1999)

genre: horror



Bats is one of those horror movies that you never can take seriously and is very well aware that it won't be taken very seriously and plays around with that fact. It's not afraid to go over the top when it needs to be but at the same time let's the actors act with a straight face making it effectively hilarious. For the most part Bats is a lot of fun and enjoyable. And this is because of our main character Lou Diamond Phillips, Dina Meyer and Leon. You just got to love how they don't flinch one bit when they get attacked by the most fake looking bats ever. And if you can get past it and pretend they are real you will find yourself rooting for the poor people fallen victim to these flesh eating flying rodents. Now I do have to say that even with the right mindset that Bats can drag a little in certain scenes but it does not become annoying or bothersome. There are some scenes where the Bats are immensely creative and menacing. That is so much more important than the special effects looking good. This one is best to be enjoyed in company or on your own if you are looking to watch every creature horror film ever made but are trying to avoid real bad ones. (On IMDB the rating is very low for this film and I don't think this is as bad as that rating suggests. But of course it is never good either. This is what you should realize when you are going to watch this one. The viewing experience will be much better because of that). A little underrated if you ask me.


Next up on the list is Hangman.


Hangman (TV Movie 2001)

genre: thriller






Hangman is a decent thriller / whodunit that at times does real well to misdirect you. But then there are times I wished it would have pushed a little harder to make it more tense and thrilling. There is just enough suspense to keep you interested but it really could have benefited from some dread. This TV movie definitely shows how Lou Diamond Phillips makes the difference. He brings a sincerity to his role that makes everything else tolerable and then some. If he would not have been in this then I don't think I would have enjoyed it as much as I did. I have to mention the ending. Don't worry not going to spoil anything. But for me it was a lazy and sloppy one. I am sure that some would think it's strong. However for someone who has watched a lot of thrillers and whodunits it's an unsatisfying one. Overall though it did not feel like a waste of time.


Then we get to Red Water.


Red Water (2003)

genre: horror, crime






As you would expect Lou Diamond Phillips does what he can to make this worth your while. However the plot and narrative is so bad and all over the place that I was wondering if somehow accidentally two scripts of two different movies got mixed. Since on the one hand we are dealing with your typical good guys versus bad guys kind of story and on the other one angry bull shark who is very hungry. I could care less about the first one but wouldn't you know it. It is that what the director focuses on the most. The shark scenes are easily the best and it is really puzzling why they did not let the shark be the main draw. But there are only a few of them and by the time they do occur you already have fallen asleep or lost interest.

In short:
Only watch this when there is nothing on very late at night. There is a slight chance you might appreciate it better. But overall I would say give this one a miss. Not even good old Lou can make up for this mess.


Last but not least it's Malevolent.


Malevolent (2002)

genre: thriller, crime




From the poster this might appear like some sort of action film and while Malevolent features some action it is more a thriller. The cat and mouse variety. Truth be told that I was not expecting this to be that good. But to my astonishment it actually was far more decent. Flawed but it did a few things right. Lou of course is the main draw and he manages to make his character interesting. Then there is the villain of the story. He has one of those faces no matter how good of a character he would be you never would trust him. He is that creepy. I liked it how that even when it seemed how events would play out that there were still some surprises in there. A little far fetched maybe. But for this type of movies it is often a blessing since it is exactly that what keeps you hooked. Malevolent does slow down at times but not enough to spoil your fun. If you happen to catch this on the tube you won't be disappointed.


You could view above movies as really bad movies and choose to ignore them or you could take a chance and let Lou Diamond Phillips win you over. I do think he has proven with these movies that he most of the time is capable of making you forget that the movie is a bad one. Which I think does take quite some skill. Think about this when you see a movie that features him. It might be worth your time.



Friday, March 27, 2015

Site News


Due to me going on a vacation for three weeks reviews might not be posted as regular as posted. However I will try to be on here as much as possible. Although I must admit this guy could use some major relaxation. 




Thursday, March 26, 2015

Review Divergent (2014): Much better than The Hunger Games

genre: science fiction, action, adventure




You can't go around The Hunger Games and not compare Divergent to it. And I have to admit that was one reason why I was a little hesitant to watch this initially. However I felt more a connection to this world than that one displayed in The Hunger games. It was far easier to relate to Tris. Granted in both movies people are restricted in the way they lead their lives. But in Divergent at least you have the sense of choice and they had something to look forward to. Plus the restriction was done a little more subtly as it would have been in the real word. In today's world people want you to believe that you only can be good in one or few things while a lot of people prove they can do more time and time again and that the options are limitless if you get the chance to discover and develop those. I personally loved it how some characters were defiant even when the majority told them not to. They seemed much more compassionate and humane than the characters in The Hunger Games. Now to be honest Divergent can be a little slow sometimes but it did not stop me from immersing myself with it. And the plot is not exactly new either. But the difference is the mood. Despite the dark themes that are present here it never gets too much. Very wisely so I might add because when something bad happens it makes much more of an impact. The direction is much tighter and superior to that of The Hunger Games. Plus the director doesn't make the mistake to overwhelm you with secondary characters too much as it would detract from learning about this world through the eyes of Tris. Overall I thought that Divergent does a much better job of telling it's story and portraying an everyday girl reaching her full potential despite the odds against her. I like it how when she starts her training she still has to develop. And how she works hard and puts in the effort to do so. So yeah for me Divergent was so much more appealing than The Hunger Games. 



Saturday, March 21, 2015

Review Two Broke Girls Season 3 (TV Show): Two Broke Girls got from broken to pathetically bad!

genre: comedy




Two Broke Girls from the start already had a quite absurd premise. But it was one that continually provided a nice contrast between the two main characters which very often was entertaining to hilarious. The events that followed up was in service of the two girls trying to make it big. Which is something most people would want to root for. While not really up to the standard of sitcoms like Friends or Seinfeld it easily was one of the best sitcoms we have currently.

As you may have caught it, I said WAS. Because season 3 has put it in the same street as Two and Half Guy. A sitcom that only worked because Charlie Sheen was in it and everybody still supporting that show are too proud and stubborn to admit that. Proof? Go see Anger Management. It's really funny. Why? Because they are letting Carlos Estevez do his thing. Back to Two Broke Girls. What happened? If I had to guess then I think that the original writers aren't involved anymore. Or they ran out of jokes to tell. Most of the comedy in that season is of the gross out factor. But it gets worse. The one thing you never should do in a sitcom is make your leads unlikable. Max and Caroline despite their quirks were two characters you could cheer for. That has been diminished considerably. Caroline has not given that much of a bad deal but Max certainly has taken a deep plunge. The things they made her character say are beyond appalling. First it was very cute to have a tough street wise character softening up and getting to know more of another world through Caroline. Max was not ignorant or stupid. However now she is. Also she also has been made very inconsistent in her behavior. One moment she is very passionate about getting into pastry school and the second she is goofing of not appreciating the chance she has been given. Caroline even addresses this in one scene and in two scenes after she does not really care. I know people can be moody and change their mind quickly sometimes but this fast is very unlikely and ridiculous. 

All of this could have been forgiven if the actual plots and events provided enough funny moments to be enjoyed. Sadly these moments are lacking. It basically comes down to a few jokes being repeated over and over again that lose their effect the third or fourth time they are told. I mean how many times do we have to hear how how much Max loves her drugs. Or how Sophie suddenly becomes bi sexual just to say that special one liner and then return to their old sexuality because it suits them better. Max also is often making rape jokes about guys she has been with it or her uncle like it is no big deal. I know that they might think that this way they are trying to xplain why Max is the way she is. But seriously enough is enough already. In the first two seasons I could tolerate the crude jokes because they were very effective. In this third season they aren't any more. They are just rude and offensive and not funny at all. I dislike comedy that just tries to shock and offer nothing else in return.

In short:
Two Broke Girls has gone bad in this third season and I doubt it will recover from this. The only way to save season 4 and becoming good again is if they pull a Dallas stunt on us and all of the events of the third season turn out to be one big dream. Please let it be so. 



Saturday, March 14, 2015

Review Focus (2015): One of the worst (con) movies I have ever seen. Pure torture!

genre: crime, comedy, romance




It's been a while I have seen Will Smith in action. Last time it was in Men in Black 3 which was horrendous. But compared to Focus that one is a freakin masterpiece. I have no idea what they were going for with Focus but how anybody could think this was remotely clever or brilliant needs his or her head examined. Because this is far from intelligent fare. In fact this easily is one of the stupidest films I have laid my eyes on. This includes all the bad B and C movies I had the pleasure of watching. Isn't that a little bit harsh Chrichton? No, you know why? Focus lacks all the wit and sophistication that is needed to make a film like this work. What is new in this one. They tried to go with a Rom-Com angle. Don't you think if they are going to do something like that it should be a little believable? Shouldn't you believe there is some kind of chemistry between the main characters. There was no buildup between them. There was no tension whatsoever. Romantic? Please. Not once was there a moment where you could buy them as a couple. Not a single second. The acting is barely decent. And the direction is awful. I can't think of one memorable scene. Then the supposedly clever twist and turns. Oh dear. Have the writers and producers of this flick even done some research on this matter? Are they even aware of what makes a con work or not? Do you honestly think a con man who is well known and recognized by even people outside his circles is a good con man? Also there are a bunch of other reasons I can't mention without spoiling but trust me it's too far fetched and not realistic. Not that I mind suspending disbelief for the sake of solid and thrilling entertainment. But then you better deliver the goods and Focus does nothing of the sort. The best I can describe it's like watching a car crash in super slow motion that lasts like 100 minutes. You know the car will be pulverized into a million pieces but it makes sure you get tortured in the process. Maybe there are some small redeeming factors if only I saw it coming from a mile away. People in the film industry. It's 2015. There have been a significant high number of movies and TV shows featuring con artists. If you really have to tackle the subject then do make sure you bring your A game to surprise the viewer. This is amateur hour through and through. AVOID at all costs! You are better off watching The Sting, Matchstick Men, Leverage or Hustle



Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Review Cherry Falls (2000)

genre: slasher, horror, thriller



This movie had a lot of potential in becoming a great horror movie. Because the story is pretty good that has a nice twist. The fact that this twist easily can be predicted if you are fan of the genre doesn't have to ruin the experience. The acting isn't half bad and even quite enjoyable. The problem of Cherry Falls however that it is lacking in so many other factors. First of all the suspense. There are just some touches of real thrills in this movie. The mystery concerning the killer is important and interesting but somehow doesn't provide the suspense to stay hooked on the story. The lack of a real threat and danger also ruins this movie. You just know when something will happen. Only two chase scenes were exciting to see. And the number of kills could have been higher. If only to symbolize the threat. But the real killer of this movie is the lack of gore. Let's face it. Cherry Falls is a slasher movie. And a slasher movie always should contain a certain amount of blood and gore. We don't get to see limbs chopped off or blood spilled. (And I am making this statement knowing very well I usually prefer the mystery over the gore. For me to accept the PG violence the mystery has to be real compelling. In this case it's not compelling enough.) Like I said earlier the twist is quite nice and enjoyable if you don't expect too much. Personally I would have liked to see a better explanation of the killer's motive. Especially since the motive doesn't really coincide with the murders. There is one element in this movie that could have saved this movie but for some reason never gets used. I don't know if it was intentional or just Brittany's way of acting. But Murphy doesn't seem to be 100%. Picture the scene where Brittany Murphy seems to be sleepwalking and saying Oh daddy or something like that. I thought that was very creepy. Using this element and the twist combined could have provided a much better ending than it did.

In short: This will be worth your time but do keep your expectations low, it won't blow you away. 

Don't read beyond this if you haven't seen this film yet. This is how I would have ended it.


Leonard Marliston and Jody Marken are actually brother and sister. (Brent Marken also raped Marliston's mother). Marliston and Jody fall in love and discover this fact. Repulsed and mad that they can't be together they both decide to get revenge for this terrible crime. To force a confession out of Brent Jody acts like she doesn't know anything about the rape. Once he confessed Marliston kills Brent. Now Jody realizes that she doesn't need Marliston anymore. She convinces him that he has to chase her and try to kill her and that she has to stay in character to mislead the others and thus provide more victims. But she actually is planning to kill him when he is off guard. When she manages to kill him everybody will have the illusion that the town is safe again. We know better. She will continue the killing!


Yahoo Profile (profile.yahoo.com) is no longer active.


You might have gotten this message when trying to edit your profile. It further says that you can't watch other profiles no more and that you can edit your picture profile, Yahoo nickname and other options. But that is it. No further information has been given on why this is or what is going to change. Well, since I am curious to find out about these things I did some digging online and found an answer on one of Yahoo's own pages called Yahoo Answers.


CLICK ON PICTURE TO INCREASE SIZE







Basically it comes down to that temporarily the profiles are inactive but the accounts can be used normally. Is this a huge thing? Is Yahoo still relevant? Why are you fuzzing about this Chrichton? Well, I think Yahoo is still very much relevant and any initiative for a service that tries to connect people deserves attention. So if for some reason changes are being made I think we should address this.