Archive Page 2

27
Feb
16

Jur-ASS-ic World

I finally got around to watching Jur-ASS-ic World the other night. My lovely wife got me the Jurassic Park complete collection on blu-ray. It was a very thoughtful gift. A nice box set of four movies, and only one of which is any good. Well, that’s what I thought anyway. So, we sat down to watch the Chris Pratt starring reboot, expecting the worst and hoping for, well, not the worst.

It turns out Jur-ASS-ic World is actually pretty good. Of the four films in the series, it’s the second best after the original. The creators of this film managed to do something that most of today’s reboots are incapable of doing: feature nods to the original but do not slavishly adhere to old tropes so much that they create a remake. *coughStarWarscough*

The story is pretty simple: the new theme park, the aptly named Jurassic World, actually opened to the public. People have been able to visit real dinosaurs for years, and nobody has been eaten. It’s a roaring success, and in order to stay a success, the theme park has genetically engineered a new attraction so the masses won’t get bored with the same old dinosaurs.

Continue reading ‘Jur-ASS-ic World’

20
Feb
16

Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead, Sabotage

Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead

Maybe it’s because I’m not into the whole zombie thing, but Wyrmwood didn’t do much for me. It’s a low-budget Australian movie that takes up the fight against hordes of the undead. Despite the meager budget, the film itself looks pretty damn good. You can tell it’s low-budget, but it looks good enough, at least like a made-for-TV movie, and you aren’t distracted too much wherever they had to cut corners. What occurs is the standard zombie movie plot: humans try to escape zombies, learn to kill zombies, repeat ad nauseaum. The only thing that sets the plot apart from other zombie films is the female lead can control zombies with telepathy. It’s a cool gimmick that I haven’t seen in a zombie film before. Unfortunately, it’s introduced way too late in the film, and is severely underutilized. The movie prefers to mire itself in genre clichés instead of working up its most promising angle. Oh well, better luck next time, Australian zombies.

Verdict: Average

Sabotage

“LISTEN ALL OF Y’ALL, IT’S A SABOTAGE!”

Arnold Schwarzenegger’s return to film hasn’t been a good one. Other than the decent if unmemorable Escape Plan, he hasn’t been in anything remotely entertaining since he retired from being Governor of California. This time he plays the leader of a team of undercover DEA agents who are assassinated one by one. Schwarzenegger’s investigation leads him to discover to culprits are some of his own. The film is rather plodding, and completely devoid of anything exciting. It’s got a good cast, but gives none of the actors anything interesting to do. The best part of the film was the final shootout, which takes Schwarzenegger to Mexico, and has nothing to do with the main plot of the film. This is a movie that didn’t need to be made, and was totally boring and inept.

Verdict: Shitty

13
Feb
16

The Revenant

“Oh my god, that movie was so crazy,” said Mrs. Brik as we walked out of the theater.

Crazy is a pretty good way to describe The Revenant. It’s a movie about surviving under the most intense conditions. But it’s not just about survival. It’s also about revenge. Leonard DiCaprio plays Hugh Glass, a man who struggles to stay alive while tracking the man who ruined his life.

The plot is pretty straightforward, and there isn’t much to it other than a basic revenge premise. What sets this movie apart is the setting and the performance from the lead actor.

Continue reading ‘The Revenant’

06
Feb
16

Punch Line, From the New World

Punch Line

Punch Line is a comedy show about seeing lots of panties. Unfortunately, it isn’t very funny, and there aren’t many panties.

It tries to emulate the frenetic style of FLCL, and it certainly does in the first episode. After that, things slow way, way down until they nearly screech to a halt.

The main character is a kid who lives as a ghost. His spirit inhabits a — I don’t know what, halfway house, I guess — that is populated by several cute, busty chicks. One of them turns out to be a robot for some reason. One is a huge pop-star (and moonlights as a super hero), but lives in this dump with a bunch of other losers.

Any time one of these hot chicks flashes her panties, the kid gets excited, his nose squirts blood, and the world explodes. Fortunately, the world is reset, otherwise, it would be a pretty short anime.

Despite a unique and crazy premise, they don’t do anything with it. Instead of zany antics set in a Groundhog Day-style world, they have the kid fucking around with cinnamon, avoiding looking at panties (huge mistake for a panties show), and fretting over stupid shit. And one of the girls owns a pet bear. WTF, guys?

Verdict: Shitty

From the New World

I really wanted to like this. Really. I did. But I didn’t. Because it sucked.

I had read nothing but praise for From the New World. But it’s the kind of show that doesn’t know what the fuck it wants to be about.

It starts out in this weirdo version of the future where there is no technology, everyone has psychic powers, and, for some reason, everyone lives a lifestyle not unlike that of feudal Japan. Only the Japanese would be narcissistic enough to think that the people of the future would live like they did in feudal Japan.

Anyway, we follow a bunch of children (naturally) who have psychic powers. They begin to investigate the disappearance of their classmates. When children go missing, suddenly no one remembers them. There is some mind-control shit going on. Their investigation leads them to find some “lost technology” which is an AI library shaped like a translucent pig (facepalm).

The kids quickly forget all about their missing classmates and get involved in a conflict between factions of giant sentient rats. Fast forward several years, and the kids are grown up (12 years old – that’s grown up in Japan) and investigating another mystery. They forget about that one, too. Fast forward a few more years (now they are ancient adults, like 20 years old or something) and all of society goes to war with the giant rats.

A bunch of characters die, but it’s impossible to care. That’s really the underlying problem with this series. None of the characters give you any reason to care about them. As much as I wanted to care about them, they gave me nothing to work with. They are lifeless husks moving a disjointed story along. There is nothing to latch onto to make you emotionally invested.

Plus, they start and stop a bunch of plotlines that go nowhere.

Verdict: Shitty

30
Jan
16

Vikings Seasons 1-2

Mrs. Brik and I love to watch historical dramas. We especially liked The Tudors and The Borgias, rife with murder and sex, and “based on true stories.” Vikings promised to be more of the same, and it pretty much delivered on all accounts.

Vikings is about Ragnar Lothbrok, who is a famous Viking, apparently. I’ll confess I know pretty much nothing about Nordic history. Anyway, it’s about his rise from meager farmer to king of the Vikings. Along the way, he engages in the requisite sex, murder, and conspiracies. All these things culminate to make the show fun.

The thing about Vikings that bothers me is that it isn’t masterfully plotted. It’s like the writer (there is only one, Michael Hirst) sits down at a table and says, “What should Ragnar do this week?” Things herk and jerk episodically. I don’t get the sense that Hirst drafted a season-long game plan. That much should be apparent when the big climax of Season 1 comes halfway through the nine-episode run, and then the final episode ends with some basic dialogue, only to be resolved in the first half of the first episode of season 2.

Continue reading ‘Vikings Seasons 1-2’

23
Jan
16

Shame Should Be Ashamed of Itself

The movie Shame is a nihilistic, pseudo-intellectual garbage bag of a film. It’s one of these movies that thinks if it’s about something controversial, that alone will be enough to make it good. Well, it’s not. You can’t just make a movie about sex addiction and have it automatically be good. It still requires all the other components of good movies: plot, acting, directing, pacing, etc. You can’t just film Michael F. Assbender’s giant dong and expect people to automatically love the movie.

One person may look at a nihilistic movie and declare it to be utterly brilliant. For me, just being nihilistic doesn’t make it good. Shame is a crushing black hole of bleakness without any attempt at having a message or moral or even a fucking theme.

Continue reading ‘Shame Should Be Ashamed of Itself’

16
Jan
16

Homefront, The Descendants

Homefront

The screenplay for this movie was written by Sylvester Stallone about 10 years ago. He put it on a shelf, and when he finally dusted it off, he realized he was too old to play the part. So, it got handed to Jason Statham who stars in this abysmal failure of a movie.

Statham stars as an ex-Interpol undercover agent or some stupid shit. He infiltrates a biker gang with the worst toupee I’ve seen in a long time. After taking them down in one night, he retires and settles down in the Deep South. Two years later, his badass daughter beats up a bully at school. The bully’s mom gets mad and hires her brother Gator (played with aplomb by James Franco) to get revenge. He, in turn, tells the biker gang where Statham lives so they can get revenge.

The whole movie feels like a setup. It’s like a trailer for a movie that never happens. You keep waiting and waiting for something to happen but it never does. The bikers finally show up when there are only about 15 minutes left. Statham kills them and saves his daughter. That’s it. Everything that came before was all a lead up to that, but there was no sense of dread or suspension or anything else. Nothing happens for the first hour and a half except for two really horrible CGI explosions.

Stallone left the script on the shelf for a reason. He should have realized that he didn’t make it 10 years ago because it sucked. Too bad his poor judgment got the better of him.

Verdict: Shitty

The Descendants

George Clooney plays the head of the King family, a wealthy white family in Hawaii. The rest of the family has squandered their inheritance, and they pressure Clooney to sell their undeveloped land in Kauai to hotel developers so they can continue their lavish lifestyles. Meanwhile, Clooney’s wife winds up in a coma, and he learns that she was having an affair.

The movie is a dramedy with heavy doses of drama and light bits of comedy sprinkled throughout. The story really works and, despite being about rich people, is highly relatable. We all have dysfunctional family members, and we all have faults. This movie portrays real people in a realistic way that makes them into easy touchstones for the viewer.

Clooney expertly maneuvers his way through the chaotic family. His acting skills are in top form as he is able to switch from drama to comedy with ease and not make the changes jarring.

The Descendants is an expertly written and directed movie. The lush Hawaiian setting makes for a nice change of pace, as well. It’s a great dramedy, one of the best examples of the genre. It is definitely worth checking out.

Verdict: Good




April 2016
M T W T F S S
« Mar    
 123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
252627282930  

Archives

BrikHaus - Find me on Bloggers.com

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 363 other followers


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 363 other followers