Tonal Shifts: The Motion Picture!
It's a music film! It's a romance! It's a cartoonish comedy! It's a parental mystery film! It's an art film! (Well, it's shot like one, anyway.) It's a kidnapping thriller!
It's a pseudo-remake of Rebel Without A Cause!
IT'S EVERYTHING AND IT'S THE WORST AND IT'S HILARIOUS.
Fun - albiet middling - slasher-era space-man horror flick finds a group of teens elbowing up with some genre greats (Martin Landau and Jack Palance, here a few years before re-teaming for the underrated Alone in the Dark) as they try to out-wit and out-run a basketball-headed alien who tosses little organic-disc doo-dads at them.
Structured like a cabin in the woods slasher featuring an alien instead of a murderer, this still manages to be a fair time despite feeling a little so-so overall. The disc-thingies are pretty cool though, and lead to some entertaining effects.
A good weekend time-waster.
Dan's Internal Dialogue
"O.K., keep it together Dan, keep it together..."
"I really dug this movie though, it's like The Fault In Our Stars but much more referential and way more funny - these performances are totally working in tandem with the cinematography to drive some amazing comedic moments. Sure a few of the referential moments are a bit on the nose, but the spoof-Criterion Collections are just wonderful, and how can you complain about a movie with this incredible…
Check your expectations at the door, and you might get some fair entertainment out of Black Sea - but don't let the stacked cast and prestigious director have you expecting high art. This is a standard thriller, through and through, but with some decent class-war plotting thrown in for good measure.
The performances are all solid as heck, the setting is claustrophobic and the central conceit is engaging. Things work well enough straight through, and you'll always be just one-step…
Why did I wait so long to watch this?
I loved it, and think this will stand the test of time supremely well - outside of the opening scene with the bear-fight; some of that felt uber-video-gamey and did NOT play well on the small screen. Surprisingly, too, since the rest of the film's effects work so well. Maybe I had to be eased in, and after that I had adjusted? Maybe.
Anyway, this was just fantastic and I enjoyed every minute.
Oh boy, does that movie kick-ass all over the place.
Since so much has already been said about it, I'll just say this: it's refreshing to have an action film in 2015 with such a strong hold on how to work visually without resorting to over-editing.
Yes, this film does have some moments where the adrenaline pumps up and the cuts come quick, but there's a ton of huge, wide establishing shots that are full of composition and action and life. When you get to really see vehicles getting eviscerated in full-view and glory... aww fuck yeah!
Plus, it's generally awesome all-around in other ways, too.
This Brian Yuzna/Screaming Mad George collabo-adaptation has an incredibly goofy tone - likely owed to the fact that Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles came out the year prior. This comes off like Yunza trying to do Power Rangers, with Screaming Mad George popping in and working his effects magic.
The transformations are pretty awesome, but the fight scenes go on much too long and aren't interesting enough to sustain them.
For a second, I wondered: "Wow, why did I watch this…
Mosquito has always been one of my go-to VHS tapes, because it has it all: aliens, mutated mosquitos, terrific gore-gags (exploding eyeballs! butt-bites!), nudity, lame comedy, a defend/siege section, and more. Even when the pace gets a bit rocky, and the repetitive score starts to overwhelm, it's still got a fun, aw-shucks-we-made-a-movie tone.
Fitting, since it was created by some of Raimi's lesser-known cronies (specifically special effects crew from his flicks). Always a good time.
Maggie is a film that I find easy to admire, hard to praise.
The film does a lot of things right - the stripped down performances, the sparse dialogue and emphasis on mood and atmospherics, but it does a few key things fatally wrong.
Mainly, there's nothing under the hood, character wise - the film piles on the visually stunning and aired-out moments, but even when some of them work wonderfully, they don't add up to much when all is…