Friday, February 25, 2011

[f.g.i.] Presents: Types Of Women Men Would Probably Avoid in Real Life

I'm sick and tired of watching romantic comedies or dramas that focus on a young man's desire to be with that girl. You know the type: pretty, quirky, intelligent, possibly a bit of a whore, free-spirited, with a devil-may-care attitude. The movie gods favor such characters because they make for a really good love story, and we're gullible enough to believe that such couples will live happily ever after.

So for my own amusement (and hopefully yours too), I've created a list of characters that, in my opinion, probably wouldn't be marriage-material. Enjoy!

1. Alice, "Closer" [played by Natalie Portman]
Ahh yes, the reluctant stripper complex. She's still doing it to pay her bills but she feels dirty inside and all she wants is a normal life. She's sexy, she's pretty, and she's broken. Probably not the best choice for a life-long partner, right? The sex will probably be out-of-this-world, true; but, as many successful couples know, sex won't keep you together. Do you really want your baby suckin' milk from those bad boys?

2. Summer, "(500) Days of Summer" [played by Zooey Deschanel]
She claims to not want anything serious, but she continues to open up to you and treat you like her sweetheart. And then, on a whim, she decides that you're "just friends" and ends up getting engaged to some other dude despite her whole "I'm not looking for anything serious" speech! She might be cute and smart, but she will fuck you over and break your heart. Beware the Zooey!

3. Danielle, "The Girl Next Door" [played by Elisha Cuthbert]
So, she's the sweetest thing you've ever seen. Then a buddy of yours tells you she was (is?) a porn star. Do you reel back in disgust at the thought of this beautiful angel being a fuck-for-hire? Emile Hirsche didn't care, but I think you would think twice about getting serious with this piece of meat.

4. Clementine, "Eternal Sunshine..." [played by Kate Winslet]
She's intellectual and deep. Not traditionally hot or sexy, but her face glows and her eyes sparkle. She is eccentric yet feisty. And, she's bat-shit crazy. I mean, the moodiest person you've ever known. But, you cling to the idea that she will overcome it some how. Oh man, was Jim Carrey mistaken.

5. Lilu, "The Fifth Element" [played by Milla Jovovich]
She's the only hope for mankind but she's lost and confused and you want to take her under your wing and see her mission through to completion. Along the way, you fall in love with the gorgeous super-being. And somehow, you teach her what it means to "feel." I think most men would prefer not to be with the biggest bad-ass civilization has ever seen. That would be a large amount of pride to swallow, and most dudes would choke to death.

**Can you think of any more? Please share!**

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Scary? Oh yes. But "Paranormal Activity 2" is slow-going with a lackluster ending: C+

So this time around, we're introduced to Kristi, Daniel, Ali, and Hunter Rey. As usual, some odd things start to happen at the Rey house that prompt the family to begin recording the activity in their home.

Remember Katie and Micah from the first "Paranormal Activity?" Well, they just so happen to appear poolside at the Rey house (I guess this is a prequel?). Kristi confides in her sister, Katie, about the weird things going on at the house. Katie recommends that she stop talking about them with the whole If-you-talk-about-it-things-will-get-worse excuse.

Adhering to the formula of most haunted house plots, Daniel simply doesn't believe that anything paranormal is going on. It's funny how men refuse to acknowledge that something is out of their control. As Kristi tries to convince Daniel that something is definitely wrong, Daniel's teenage daughter Ali begins to notice also. That dumb bitch decides to bust out a Ouija board one night, and - guess what? - some scary shit really starts to happen.

Some kitchen cabinets fly open, some pots swing back and forth, the electronic pool-cleaner crawls its way out of the pool, some doors slam really loudly, etc. I think the scariest part was when the spirit started to mess with the baby, Hunter. Apparently, babies are really delicious this time of year and they're ripe for the picking.

I was truly scared, no joke. This movie did a great job of keeping you in suspense, with that urgent desiore to cover your ears and look down at the ground to avoid watching the horrendous things on-screen. But there was a - HUGE! - problem with the story. **SPOILERS ON DECK**

So, the evil demon spirit of the house decides to go after Kristi. It drags her from the baby's room, down the stairs, and into the dreaded basement. When Kristi, emerges, she is obviously possessed. She stares off into space, she has a huge bite mark on her inner thigh, and she won't eat or sleep. Well, the Hispanic ex-housekeeper suggests that getting rid of the demon would be the best option. In order to do that, Daniel must "transfer" the energy of the demon to a blood relative of Kristi. And guess who that might be...?

Yeah. So, I guess the whole explanation of the first "Paranormal Activity" is that the demon actually stopped by Kristi Rey's house first in order to get that scrumptious rich-in-fat baby meat, but was kicked the f*** out and sent to Katie and Micah's place instead. You would be pissed off too!!!

So the end of "Paranormal Activity 2" shows Katie stumbling into the Rey house, bloody from feasting on the flesh of her boyfriend, snapping the neck of Daniel and making her way to Hunter. She kills her own sister and gets the baby, and as the two of them exit the room, you can hear the baby giggling.

So LAME!!! I seriously would've enjoyed the movie much more if it wasn't for the sorry-ass ending, attempting to link the two movies together. I think it would have been smarter to have "Paranormal Activity 2" focus on a completely new family, a different bloodline. The ending really ruined things for me. But other than that, I found "Paranormal Activity 2" to be mildly entertaining, and certainly terrifying. I would recommend watching it, but avoid the agony of the last twenty or so minutes if you can.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

"Cedar Rapids" can't get by without the help of some friends: B-

I wasn't sure what to expect when I stepped into the theater to watch "Cedar Rapids." I had only seen a single trailer, and it was a really short one that highlighted John C. Reilly as some kind of goofball. Knowing that he was going to be in it was enough for me to be down.

Turns out "Cedar Rapids" is produced by Ed Helms, star of "The Office" and The Hangover." He also stars in his feature as the innocent - yet completely socially inept - Tim Lippe, an insurance sales agent from a sleepy town in Wisconsin. When the agency's MVP ("Reno 911" star Thomas Lennon) is suddenly found dead vis-a-vis David Carradine, Tim Lippe must step up and head to the fictional ASMI convention to win his agency another Two Diamond Award of Excellence.

With the barely-there support of his lover and former grade-school teacher, (played by the lovely Sigourney Weaver), Tim must put on his big-boy pants and head to Cedar Rapids for the convention. He befriends Joan (Anne Heche), Ronald (Isiah Witlock Jr.), and Dean a.k.a. 'Deansie' (John C. Reilly). Of course, Tim learns how to let loose and have a good time with his new pals.

This movie starts off as mildly entertaining, and as soon as John C. Reilly comes into the fold, the pace picks up and so does the humor. Ed Helms is pretty much the same guy in everything I've seen him in: the quirky, at-times-inappropriate, never-done-that-before type of guy. Tim Lippe is just another hologram of Stu Price and Andy Bernard. The awkwardness gets a little tedious, and so the movie has bits of vacuousness.

I was really surprised by Anne Heche's impressively funny performance. Her character, Joan , is very similar to Vera Farmiga's Alex in "Up in the Air." It's the whole "I'm-a-bored-wife-and-mom-please-show-me-a-good-time" ploy. Of course, for a sucker like Tim Lippe, Joan is intruiging and exciting, despite her forked tongue and loose lips (hehehe!). It always bothers me how these unfaithful women are the key to discovering the lighter side of life...but that's another post entirely.

The supporting cast helps to keep you interested: Kurtwood Smith (Red from "That 70's Show") as the president of the ASMI convention, Alia Shawkat (Maeby from "Arrested Development") as a down-to-party hooker, and Stephen Root ("Dodgeball" and "American Dad") as the crooked head of Tim's beloved agency.

This movie is about the lost innocence of the American business machine. Throw in a subplot about getting drunk with strangers and learning how to stand up for yourself, and you've got "Cedar Rapids." It reminded me of 2009's "Extract," which wouldn't have been such a decent movie without its hilarious supporting cast members (Kristen Wiig, David Koechner, T.J. Miller, etc.). Ed Helms couldn't have kept me interested for an hour and a half, and this movie definitely wouldn't have been worth watching if it wasn't for John C. Reilly, Anne Heche, and the remaining cast members. It was a pretty good time.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

"The Eagle" will s*** all over your face and then put you to sleep: C-

Well, I think the title of this entry sums it up pretty well. "The Eagle" was possibly one of the most boring movies I have ever seen.

The story follows Marcus Aquila (Channing Tatum) as he seeks to redeem his family's honor by tracking down the lost Eagle of the Ninth Legion, which was led by his father and massacred by the painted Seal People. After taking in a Brigante slave named Esca (Jamie Bell), who knows the language and the land, the two men set out to find the Eagle.

Sounds like a decent premise, in my opinion. The problem didn't lie with the story, but with the horrendous choice of casting Channing Tatum. (Yes, the dude from "Step Up" and "She's The Man.") If you were to choose an actor to play a Roman commander out for vengeance, wouldn't you choose someone with a reputable history of being a badass? I get that his "look" gives him an advantage in landing such roles, but he's a terrible actor! Next to Sam Worthington (a.k.a. Stoneface McGee), he's probably one of the worst.

Just because Channing Tatum works out a lot and has an abnormally strong jawline, it doesn't mean that I'll believe him as a Roman commander. Apparently, the Seal People weren't very scared of him.

That scar on his chin is a result of excessive ball-gag use.

Jamie Bell is appropriately chosen for the role of Esca. It seems that Jamie Bell has the unique ability to make the awful movies he stars in a little bit more watchable. Hello, did anyone else see "Jumper?"

The location they used to shoot this movie was absolutely beautiful. The cinematography was decent, and the costumes seemed pretty legit to the period. In truth, this movie could have been successful.

I started to fall in and out of sleep towards the last forty-five minutes of the movie. Napping is never a good sign, my friends. Pass on seeing this one - you can always nap at home for free.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

MTOTM (Movie Term of The Month): The Unreliable Narrator

Last night, I watched "The Machinist." May I just briefly say that it is one of the most haunting psychological thrillers in film history. I mean, wow. Christian Bale is one crazy mother-effer, he dedicates his entire being into his movies (except maybe "Terminator: Salvation," that was awful). Thanks to the genius of my cohort, The Rapid Reviewer, a revelation has struck!

1. the unreliable narrator, Pronoun:
(a) Any character in a film whose narration of current or transpired events cannot be completely accepted as truth by the audience. (b) Any main character in a film who exhibits behaviors commonly associated with schizophrenia, paranoia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, pseudologia fantastica, and/or multiple personality disorder. Examples include:

Donald Darko

Occupation: High school student

Why He's Unreliable: Donnie is a sleepwalker. He believes that a man in a bunny suit named Frank tells him what to do. The events of Donnie's young life include parallel time lines and paranoid delusions of death.

The Narrator/Tyler Durden

Occupation: Claims Investigator/Soap Maker/Anarchist

Why He's Unreliable: Exhibits signs of paranoia, delusion, and split personality disorder. He is crazy enough to kick his own ass.

Occupation: Unemployed

Why He's Unreliable: Leonard is unable to make new memories. He must rely on his Polaroids and tattoos to solve the murder of his wife. He has no frame of reference or sense of time.

Trevor Reznick

Occupation: Machinist

Why He's Unreliable
Trevor hasn't slept in over a year. His perception of time and space is riddled with cloudy memories of a hit-and-run incident.

Teddy Daniels
Occupation: Federal marshal

Why He's Unreliable: 'Teddy Daniels' is a persona created by mental patient Andrew Laeddis. Andrew uses Teddy to deal with the loss of his family.

Can you think of another "unreliable narrator?" Share your findings!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

[f.g.i.] Presents: Reel-y Awesome Dancers

I've started a campaign against seeing "Black Swan" before the Oscars. With all the hype surrounding the movie's erotic tale of schizophrenia, and along with Natalie Portman's unusually high volume of new releases, I have the feeling that "Black Swan" may not be so deserving of its praise.

To kick off my boycott, here's a brief list of my favorite dance scenes. Enjoy!

1. The Walk-Off ("Zoolander")
2. The Twist ("Pulp Fiction")
3. The Tango of Roxanne ("Moulin Rouge")
4. Disco War ("Starsky and Hutch")
5. Preston Talent Show ("Napoleon Dynamite")
6. Nightclub scene ("The Hot Chick")
7. Banana Boat dance ("Beetlejuice")
8. The Mamushka ("The Addams Family")
9. Farley Strips ("Beverly Hills Ninja")
10. Kate Winslet's Irish Dance ("Titanic")
11. Toot-Sweets Dance ("Chitty Chitty Bang Bang")
12. We're Men ("Robin Hood: Men in Tights")
13. The Dice Thing ("Knocked Up)"
14. Alien Baby Dance ("Spaceballs")
15. Tequila Dance ("Pee-Wee's Big Adventure")

Happy dancing, you fools!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Mr. Brainwash stumps Banksy in "Exit Through The Gift Shop" - A

I'm finding it difficult to explain what I have just witnessed. I thought this movie would be about Banksy, the greatest street artist in history. Which it sort of was. I also expected to see street art in motion, to witness the vandalism first-hand. Which, I did in fact see. What I didn't expect, was a strange Frenchman named Thierry Guetta.

Who the hell is Thierry Guettta? In the beginning, he's father of three kids with a wife and a video camera that he never lets go of. Then, he becomes a cultish follower of the street art movement, traveling the world to capture the actual artists themselves. Then, he comes an apprentice to noted artist Shepard Fairey (of "OBEY" fame). Then, he's introduced to Banksy and becomes his right-hand man after Guetta proves he would never snitch on his master. Then, Banksy encourages Guetta to become an artist and open his first exhibition. And then, Thierry Guetta evolves into MBW (Mr. Brainwash), whose art sells for over $1 million in its opening weekend.

Wait! What the hell just happened?

I don't know if this movie was meant to be some sort of mockumentary to prove that art is truly meaningless...was it?

This usually doesn't happen to me, but I really am having a hard time describing this movie. In my personal experience, that's usually a sign of some degree of greatness.

"Exit Through The Gift Shop" has my official endorsement for this year's Oscar for Best Documentary. Really, really great stuff.

Even if it was a joke.

Monday, February 7, 2011

The Vault: "Constantine" [Blu-Ray]

Talk about a movie that didn't get its due praise.

With only 46% on RottenTomatoes, "Constantine" has endured endless criticism for its messy script and overly-spectacular battle royale between heaven and hell. Keanu Reeves didn't get much love either, as many critics anointed him the worst possible choice for the elusive comic book character. The movie's accused of being a cheesy rip-off of "The Matrix" muddled with a tinge of "The Exorcist."

You know what? These critics can suck it.

This is the third time I've watched "Constantine," and I have to defend it! I seriously cannot think of any particular thing that makes this movie unwatchable. One RT critic claimed that it was "difficult to understand what Constantine is about[...]" Really, guy? It's not that hard to figure out: John Constantine has the ability to see and interact with demons, thus also having the ability to rid our world of them if necessary. Simple.

Richard Roeper exclaimed, "it's just so awful." What's so awful about it? It's a movie based on a comic, you asshole. Were you expecting an Oscar-worthy script? My gosh! For what it was meant to be, "Constantine" is a near-perfect movie. Keanu was perfectly cast - his natural stoicism and reluctance fit in with the John Constantine of the Vertigo series. Rachel Weisz was a great addition, as an actress who does very well against a male lead thanks to her subtle beauty and believability. And let's not forget about Peter Stormare and Tilda Swinton, who were dead-on as Satan and Gabriel. Also, on that note, it was very clever of Francis Lawrence to cast Swinton as the angel Gabriel - aren't angels supposed to be androgynous anyway?

The special effects were elaborate and cheesy at times, yes, but this is Constantine! He goes to hell and back battling demons and the son of Satan! Are critics really going to knock Lawrence for not making it look "real" enough? Knowing what some of these critics have to say about such awesome films, I wouldn't be surprised if they themselves made a trip or two to hell and sold teir souls to Satan for that extra $10,000 a year.

Here's what I want to get across to everyone: comic books have a made a huge comeback in the theater. The majority of these movies have been absolute crap - "Hellboy," "The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen," "Spawn," "Jonah Hex," "The Punisher," "Superman Returns," etc. You can't honestly watch "Constantine" and believe that it belongs in this group of shitty-Mcshit-shit, can you?

"Constantine" is majorly badass. The movie did his character justice, and introduced a fresh perspective on the age-long battle for souls between God and Satan. The effects were awesome, the cast was fitting, and the overall mood of the movie gets you in the mood to kick some demon ass. I'm loving this movie.

Friday, February 4, 2011

[f.g.i.] Presents: My 7 Favorite Movies About Football

With the Super Bowl upon us, I thought it would be appropriate to create a list of my favorite football movies. Truthfully, I'm not planning on watching the Super Bowl, nor do I care very much about football as a sport. But there have been some really great movies that focus on America's favorite sport.

"Jerry Macguire"
Show me the mooooonnaaaay!!!

Samwise Gamgee bulks up on taters so he can play ball.

"Any Given Sunday"
Can you win or lose like a man?

"Remember The Titans"
Based on a true story and very inspiring

"Friday Night Lights"
Billy Bob will not put up with your shit.

"The Longest Yard"
Oh damn! I meant to find a picture of Burt Reynolds

"Little Giants"
Enough said

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Thanks to Ben Foster, "The Mechanic" isn't just another hitman movie - B

After my horrible experience with "The Green Hornet," I was hoping that the next trip to the theater would be worth the money.

"The Mechanic" answered my prayers.

Jason Statham has successfully marketed himself to the Hollywood studios through channeling either an angry, doped-up Chev Chelios or the elusive Bond-inspired Frank Martin. If he's not kicking ass and taking names, he's just a British dude who's in on some sort of scheme vis-a-vis "Snatch" and "The Bank Job." I have to give the guy some serious credit for continuing to push out decent action movies, and "The Mechanic" is just another example of his more-than-awesome movie persona.

This time around, Arthur Bishop is a skilled hitman who makes it a point to be strategic and smart. Rather than being just another gun-for-hire, Arthur knows how to tweak his kills so that a hit is not suspected. When confronted by his employer to eliminate his friend and mentor Harry McKenna (Donald Sutherland), Arthur does what he's expected to do.

Enter Ben Foster (yes, the geek from Disney channel's "Flash Forward"), the delinquent adult son of Harry. Riddled with guilt, Arhur decides to take Steve McKenna under his wing and show him the ropes. Once Ben Foster comes into the picture, the movie really starts to get going. As Steve and Arthur complete jobs together, they seriously tear shit up - and if you ask me, there's nothing better than a couple of angry hitmen with lots of money and lots of gadgets.

The story is surprisingly fluid, although predictable. But what do you expect?

Ben Foster is awesome, and he's very believable in every role he takes on. Statham sticks with what works for him - he kicks ass, gets some ass, and then kicks some more ass.

"The Mechanic" is a decent movie. The action sequences are well done and not too choppy, it doesn't drag on, and it's a new take on the whole hitman thing. I haven't seen the Charles Bronson original, but I'm assuming the 2011 remake is a modern improvement. Props to both Statham and Foster for giving me the first legit theater experience of the new year.

My final thought?
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...