Posts Tagged ‘evil dead

20
Aug
18

Person of Interest Season 3, Ash vs. Evil Dead Season 1

Person of Interest Season 3
Person of Interest is a show that just keeps getting better and better. Season three manages to nail everything that works, and tosses just about everything that doesn’t. The biggest thing holding this series back has always been the “case of the week” format. It’s to be expected considering this aired on CBS, who is the king of the crime procedural. However, this season manages to dump the case of the week format a couple of episodes in. What follows are two lengthy serialized stories. The first focuses on Detective Carter and her personal war against the dirty cop syndicate, HR. While I was less than impressed with Taraji Henson’s performance in season 1, she improved in season 2, and she became the absolute highlight in season 3. Having her own storyline, and some real character work to sink her teeth into, Hensen excelled. The second storyline, which has a more intriguing plot, comes when a nefarious organization tries to bring their own surveillance machine online. There are plenty of twists and turns story-wise, and the large, looming threat ratchets up the tension and the action. The rest of the cast turn in good performances, and the action scenes never disappoint. The ultimate villain of the entire series is revealed at the end of the season, and I am very excited to see what comes next. I find it hard to believe that a show this good, a show about artificial intelligence and government surveillance, has gone this far on network television. If you can make it through the so-so first season, then stick with Person of Interest, because it has turned out to be great.
Verdict: Awesome
Ash vs. Evil Dead Season 1
Ever since I watched the original Evil Dead movie on HBO, when I was way too young for it and it scared the shit out of me, I have been a fan of this franchise. Although it ended perfectly with Army of Darkness, like many fans, I thought there was room for more Ash Williams in our lives. I was ecstatic when they announced an Evil Dead television series. Decades removed from the last film, I couldn’t believe how perfectly they nailed the series. The first episode is Evil Dead through and through. It’s got just the right mix of horror and humor. Bruce Campbell is still the best when it comes to slapstick and self-deprecation, yet still manages to be a complete badass when the time calls for it. There isn’t much in terms of a plot, as it’s mostly Ash and his friends on some kind of quest to stop the Deadites. They go from place to place fighting evil each episode. The best part was when he summoned a different kind of demon to fight. He should have been the “big bad” for the season, but he only lasted two episodes, which was kind of a let-down. The show becomes a bit repetitive as they inevitably fight Deadites in each episode, and you know none of the main characters are going to die. This is probably the biggest problem with the show, that and some questionable CGI at times, although they do tend to go with more practical effects, which is nice. The final couple of episodes have a nice bit of nostalgia for long-time fans, and a cool twist to keep things fresh. Overall, this is a fun series, and anyone who is a fan of Evil Dead needs to watch it.
Verdict: Good
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24
May
13

Versus

It’s called Versus, yet there is only one person in the poster. Hmm…

Versus is a bizarre movie. Nonsensical, even. It’s a super low-budget cult film featuring cops, gangsters, shootouts, samurai, zombies, martial arts, karate zombies, sword fighting, and demons. It’s like the director grabbed a list of “cool shit” from the internet, and mixed it all together, hoping it would work. And depending on your point of view, it either totally works, or is a complete fucking mess.

Director Ryuhei Kitamura filmed this in 2000, and it certainly shows. Versus comes from a time when the tone of movies was more focused on wacky hijinks and slapstick humor, which is a big departure from today’s films when everything is a GRRR DARK AND GRITTY exercise in moroseness. I suppose if Versus had played it straight, nothing would work. The whole thing is just too goddamn crazy. The lighter tone is there to remind the viewer to not take it too seriously, otherwise the movie collapses in on itself. The closest thing I can compare this to is Evil Dead II. It’s got plenty of madcap antics and off-beat humor, mixed in with a semi-serious plot. It isn’t really clear whether Kitamura is completely aping Sam Raimi’s directing style, or paying homage to it.

Continue reading ‘Versus’

21
Oct
11

Paranormal Activity Dragged Me to Hell with The Blair Witch

Kanye always be interruptin’

It’s hard to be original in the horror genre. That genre, more so than any other, requires very specific tropes. In order to create a horror movie, you must adhere to well-worn, extremely tired genre cliches. I suppose this is true for any genre, but for horror it goes to an entirely different level. Here is a list of genre tropes in general for horror movies:

  1. An average, identifiable person is the protagonist.
  2. A monster/villain will kill off the other characters, usually one by one.
  3. When the monster/villain starts murdering people and/or wreaking havoc, no one will believe the protagonist regarding what is going on.
  4. Most female characters will get naked.
  5. Any female characters that do get naked will die and therefore cannot be the protagonist.
  6. All characters that have sex will die.
  7. Black, Hispanic, Asian (any non-white race) characters will die and therefore cannot be the protagonist.
  8. The monster/villain will have exactly one weakness which coincidentally is the only way to kill it.
  9. The monster/villain must always be killed twice.
  10. When terrible shit starts happening, the characters must always “split up” in order to make it easier to be killed.
  11. Cell phones will never work.
  12. Cars will never start.
  13. Flashlight batteries will always be dead, and lighters will always be out of fluid, making it dark at all times.
  14. When running away from the monster/villain, one or all characters will fall down and be unable to stand back up.
  15. When wanting to get another character’s attention, the best way to do it is to silently approach them and quickly grab their shoulder, preferably in a dimly lit room or cemetery.

While these may be all-encompassing for horror movies as a whole, there are several sub-genres with even more rigid guidelines. For example:

  • Slasher Movie – All characters will be teenagers. The protagonist will always be female. People will die with copious amounts and blood and often times inventive deaths. The “scares” will come from the director having things pop out during tense scenes in order to startle the audience. There will be no three-dimensional characters. The only character growth allowed will be the timid, nerdy protagonist transforming into a badass monster killer. Examples include Halloween and Friday the 13th.
  • Haunted House – An unsuspecting family will move into a new home. The home will be haunted by evil spirits of previous occupants who were murdered there and/or ghosts from the Indian burial ground the home was built on. The “scares” will start off small and build up to more ludicrous things by the end. Typically a human character will be possessed at one point and go on a murderous rampage. Examples include The Amityville Horror and The Shining.
  • Torture Porn – This is the newest of the horror sub-genres. It is comprised of nothing more than the director’s attempts to gross out the audience as much as possible. To do this the director will film close-ups of the most disgusting bodily functions imaginable. The “scares” come while blood and guts fly across the screen and the audience tries to keep itself from vomiting. Examples include Hostel and The Human Centipede.
  • Exorcism Film – A young child (female) will become possessed by an evil demon and/or the devil. “Scares” come as the possessed child does crazy shit like speak in a deep demonic sounding voice, levitate, spit pea soup, etc. There will always be tons of Catholic imagery, priests, holy water, etc. These movies are ALWAYS “based on a true story.” Examples include The Exorcist and, well, anything with the word “Exorcism” in the title.

Continue reading ‘Paranormal Activity Dragged Me to Hell with The Blair Witch’

22
Sep
09

If There Was a Video Game Version of Sucking Balls, it Would Be Called Halo.

About a million years ago I played Halo on the PC. It was one of the hugest pieces of shit of all time. It was repetitive, boring, had lame guns, had an idiotic story, and was about as generic as FPS games can get. I hated it so much that I refused to play Halo 2 or 3, despite the fact that fanboys around the world heralded them as the best things since sliced bread. Which is really saying a lot, since sliced bread is the best thing since sliced bread.

A few months back, three other friends and I got together and it was decided that we should play Halo 3 online. My friend has an Xbox 360 and a huge HD TV, and I was drunk, so I figured, “Sure, why the fuck not?” We played, and it was incredible. It was one of the most fun multiplayer experiences of my videogaming life. Don’t get me wrong, it was no Goldeneye 64, but it was a pretty solid experience nonetheless.

So, after months of playing Halo 3 online with my friends, I decided I would go back in time and play through the single player campaign of Halo 2, with the intent of then moving on to part three. After all, online play was so much fun that the developers must have fixed their mistakes from the previous games, right?

That was a huge mistake. Continue reading ‘If There Was a Video Game Version of Sucking Balls, it Would Be Called Halo.’




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