Monday, December 21, 2009


1995. In 1995, James Cameron wrote a treatment for a film called "Avatar". Avatar was supposed to be on the cutting edge of special FX. And as we all know, the 90's weren't the best years for special FX. Yeah, we had Jurassic Park, but we also had Escape From L.A. James Cameron went onto doing a little film called Titanic. Was the film any good? Barely. But it didn't matter. It made James Cameron (as he said at the Oscars) "King of the World". Afterall, he was director of the highest grossing film of all-time (and that still stands). Fast-forward 12 years and two land-mark films (in photo-realism special FX) later, he's back with Avatar. And without those 2 land-mark films, I dont think Avatar would have hit screens as soon as it did. And what are those two films? Neither he was involved with. Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest. Now, I love Peter Jackson, but Im not a fan of Lord of the Rings. They're just too bland for my taste. But WETA Digital did an incredible job on Gollum. And what WETA did for Gollum in Lord of the Rings, ILM did for Davy Jones in Pirates of the Caribbean. And those two films are what proved to Cameron that the technology was almost there. All he had to do was push it. And that he did. As James Cameron said, with Avatar, they pushed the technology, it pushed back, and they pushed harder. And it shows almost 100% on screen.
A couple years back, when I first heard about Avatar I was totally sold. And all I knew was "James Cameron" and "science fiction". There were no pictures, no plot, no interviews, nothing. All there was, was a director, and a return to form. Fast-forward a year later, Avatar's release date was announced. Summer 2008. That wasn't the case. The film was pushed back over more than a year, and there was STILL nothing to be released. Still no pictures or anything. And then they released a couple pictures of James Cameron on set. Which I guess was cool, but really... Who wants that? Show us some stills. And then of course, the Na'vi design leaked online. It looked like... Blue cat people. What the fuck? My anticipation went down a bit, and then the talk of a teaser trailer was circulating. Anticipation went up. The teaser trailer came out. Anticipation went down. Then 20th Century Fox did "Avatar Day" in August, where they played 15 minutes of the film in IMAX 3D. I went, and my anticipation went back up. And then the theatrical trailer was released, and I was fucking ready.
Avatar has been my "gold at the end of the rainbow" for this week, so to speak. I mean, Ive been waiting for this film for 2 years now (despite my fluctuation in anticipation-levels), and it was finally here. So the day finally came, and I finally went to see it. In IMAX 3D no less. And all I have to say is fucking A. Well, actually, that's a lie. That's not all I have to say. I mean, Im not going to write two paragraphs leading up to the event, without writing about the actual event. So here it goes...
First of all, I already expressed my new profound love for 3D after watching A Christmas Carol in 3D, in my last blog. But within the first 20 seconds of Avatar, you really understand what the movie is going for, in terms of 3D. There are 2 kinds of 3D. There is the gimmicky "comin-at-ya" 3D, and there's the "looking-through-the-window" 3D. Avatar is the latter. When the first 10 minutes of you being amazed as to how fucking incredible the 3D is, when that goes by, you are totally immersed into the film. You honestly dont even notice the 3D (and I say that in the best possible way). I saw this in IMAX 3D, and I say this with 100% honesty... There is NO other way to see it. This film was made to be seen in IMAX 3D. It's unfathomable to me, to see it any other way. I wouldn't see it in 2D, I wouldn't see it in a regular theatre in 3D, I wouldn't see it in 2D IMAX. IMAX 3D. And when it's out of theatres, and on DVD, I have no idea what Im going to do. Of course Im going to buy it. This isn't just a film, it really is an experience. And yes, there are some of those "gimmicky" shots. But to be completely honest, they're really not gimmicky at all. When an Amp-Suite is smashing down a tree, it makes sense that wood shards would fly towards you. When bullets are flying through the air, and their target is past the camera, it would make sense that the bullets would be flying past you. It all works, because most of the "comin-at-ya" shots are literally 45 minutes apart from each other. And there's only about three or four noticeable ones.
Now due to the 3D technology really not being enhanced, and just being used correctly, Ill get to the main focus of the movie. The FX. As I already mentioned, I wasn't too fond of the alien designs before. And it's not that Im not fond of them now (because they're nothing spectacular), but the difference between what I thought of them now, and then is... I understand WHY. And it's the story. This movie is a lot of things in one. It's a message (without being too forceful), it's a commentary (without being to direct), but most of all, it's a love story. Now Ill get into the whole story originality later. But for now, I want to go in depth as to why the alien designs suit the story. You'll find a lot of producers and people who are trying to sell a movie always talk about "it's all about the story...". And 9 times out of 10 they're leaking sacks of diarrhea. But the alien design actually does suit the story. In a nutshell, the synopsis of the movie is, an ex-Marine joins a program in which his brain and consciousness is linked to a synthetically-grown Na'vi body to learn from the inside. Except, he falls in love with another Na'vi, and realizes the true soulless intentions of the corporation that he's working for. Now had the Na'vi and his synthetically-grown body had been this cool, badass-looking alien, I dont think the emotion-factor would have been there. I honestly think why I felt emotionally-linked with these characters, is because they shared a physical resemblance. And that is why the special FX are known as "ground-breaking", "game-changing", and "revolutionary". It's because they are photo-realistic. Now there is a difference between "real-looking-CGI" and "photo-realistic". The T-Rex scene in Jurassic Park is "real-looking-CGI", but the faces in Avatar are photo-realistic. Now, not all the shots and scenes in Avatar are photo-realistic, but when it comes to all the close-ups of Jake and Neytiri, they are so unbelievably real. And the fact that they can put Davy Jones to shame, it makes me wonder where we'll be at in 10 years.
To venture further into the movie's FX, Id like to compliment another aspect of the film. And that was the bioluminescence scenes at night. James Cameron created a world that was very familiar, in terms of science fiction and fantasy, but he twisted it. And one of the most beautiful touches he added was the night time bioluminescence. It was fucking gorgeous. And that is the one prime example that I would give, as to why you NEED to see this movie in IMAX 3D. It's a prime example that proves that the movie doesn't rely on IMAX 3D, but it sure as fuck enhances the experience times 100. To avoid any minor spoilers, Im not going to go into all beautiful sequences that occur in those scenes. But they are fucking incredible.
Now Ive read plenty of reviews on Avatar, and I think, in terms of story, theyre either giving it too much credit, or not enough credit. The movie is not completely original... Like at all. But it doesn't lack a story, that's for damn sure. It's a combination of stuff you've seen. But it blends it in a way that it works enough for you to give a fuck as to what's going on. Like I said previously, it has messages, it has commentaries, and it has a love story. All of which work.
The score. One of thee most important players to any movie for me, is the score. The score to this film is really good, fluent, and overall, well-written. But what the fuck would you expect from James Horner? Now eventhough James Horner had worked with James Cameron before Mel Gibson, I still think James Cameron gets Mel Gibson's sloppy seconds. In 1995, James Horner did the score for Mel Gibson's Braveheart. Braveheart had those unforgettable and trademark bagpipes. Come 1997, James Cameron used Horner for Titanic. What was Titantic known for? It's use of bagpipes. In 2006, Gibson used Horner for Apocalpypto. And the one key element that stood out on that score was the native's vocal track. It was almost a sigh/hiss. Well... Come 2009, what is one of the most re-occuring sounds for Avatar? The native sigh/hiss. But you know what? It doesnt distract me too much from the score itself. Because the main theme is fucking beautiful. It has a sci-fi sound to it, but it's predominantly fantasy. As queer as it sounds, it's got a sense of "wonderment" to it. I hate that word. Like, a lot. But it's the first and only word that comes to mind when I hear the theme. But overall, the whole score is great. Though, I did hear a few ques from Braveheart and King Kong (2005). Also, the battle themes are blood-pumping. Id love to go into all the battle themes, but there would be too many spoilers revealed (one of which involves a Na'vi jumping onto an aircraft carrier and destroying all the Marines).
The end battle. Dont cunt at me, you knew there was going to be an end battle. That's hardly a spoiler. The battle is fucking KILLER. Im not going to give too much away in this 20-minute radically awesome battle, but there's: guns the size of school buses, Amp-Suits (Mother-Loader-like suits), dragon-on-aircraft action, dragon-on-helicopter action, 3 dragons-on-aircraft action, animal-on-Amp-Suit action, fire, more fire, dragons-ripping-out-Marines-from-Aircraft action, 3 dragons-ripping-out-Marines-from-Aircraft, and a lot more. Also, Col. Quaritch is DIRECTLY from Aliens. This dude is BAD. ASS. And I dont mean that in a "oh-this-is-a-new-guy-trying-to-become-an-action-icon" kind of way. This dude is genuinely badass. Stephen Lang, look into him. He auditioned for Aliens back in '85, FYI.
All in all, Avatar EXCEEDED my expectations. Was it a flawless movie? No, it wasn't. Has Avatar changed movies forever like they said it would? No, I dont think so. But is it a landmark? Yes. A giant landmark.
Also, you ever notice all James Cameron's films either start with the letter "T" or "A"? The Terminator, Aliens, The Abyss, Terminator 2: Judgement Day, True Lies, Titanic, Avatar. Piranha 2 doesn't count. Fuck off.
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A Christmas Carol

Alright, when I first heard about this, I had no anticipation whatsoever. And to be quite honest, up until 4 hours ago, I had very very very little anticipation. I mean, I love Robert Zemeckis. But lets face it, dude hasn't done really anything really really really good since 1990. I mean, Death Becomes Her was hoot and a holler (yes, I used that phrase) when I was a kid, but Ill never watch it willingly again. Forrest Gump, I was never really a fan of. Contact was alright, I guess. What Lies Beneath I heard was awful. And Cast Away I actually did like. But like I said, it wasn't really really really good. And now, 5 years later, we get Robert Zemeckis' 3 motion-capture films. Ill outright and say it, Ive never seen The Polar Express. Didn't look bad, just never saw it. But Beowulf was terrible. Now, Im not certain as to why I really hated it. Whether it was that... It was a pile of shit. Or was it that... I was at my theatre until 3 in the morning splicing together a film that I dropped in the projection booth, and THEN decided to have my own little screen of Beowulf at 4 in the morning? To be quite honest, I think the movie just blew. Well before I get too off-track before I even start this little write-up, I walked into the theatre tonight on the opposite side of the "3D motion-capture" fence. And I walked out... Inside the fence.
First off, Ive never seen a 3D feature film in theatres. Ive seen those 20-minute 3D shows that they have at Universal and Disney and whatnot, but Ive never seen a feature-length film in 3D. And ignorantly, Id bash any 3D film that would come out recently (from late 2007 and on). But I did so with good reason, I think. When I think "3D", I think cheap, gimmicky, just-for-3D shots. But what stuck in my head since this past June, was what John Lasseter (Pixar head honcho) said about UP in 3D. He said that they use it to submerse yourself into that world. To make you feel as if you're in that world. And when I watched A Christmas Carol tonight, I felt as if I was actually in the room at times. And during those moments, I thought of what John Lasseter had said. And from that moment on, I had a new love for what is 3D.
Now this write-up isn't so much a praise for A Christmas Carol, as much as it is a write-up for just the experience as a whole. I mean, the night started off shitty in the first place. First of all, no one wanted to go (understandable). But I said fuck it, and figured Id spend a night with myself, Nerd Rope, Peanut M&M's, Now and Laters, popcorn, and Coke. Secondly, I locked my keys in my car (in which I had to call my dad to pick up my mom's keys from the house). But then, I saw the first trailer in 3D, and it was incredible. The movie looked ass, but the 3D looked phenomenal. And then the movie started. I remember I saw Capitalism: A Love Story with my sister a couple weeks back, because she wanted to. And there was this guy, all alone laughing at all the stuff that Micheal Moore was saying. But not just laughing, laughing as if he wanted to let everyone know Michael Moore was telling lies or something (probably was, but I couldnt care less). Anyway, the guy looked pathetic and crazy. And Im fairly certain that is what the family 2 rows behind me thought when the opening titles came up for A Christmas Carol. I literally said aloud stupid shit like "that looks fantastic!", and "that looks incredible!". I was just so amazed as to what I was missing out on these couple years. And that was just the opening titles. And all of the "gimmicky" shots that wouldn't have been in the film had it not been 3D... Well, they didnt bother me. I think due to the film being all motion capture animation, the level of realism and reality played well with the "gimmicks". I mean, if The Coens did a 3D live action movie and threw those gimmicks in there, there would be a major problem. But with animation it works. So my number one gripe with 3D was out the window. My second gripe isn't with 3D, but with motion capture. And that is the stiffness of the animation. I remember in Beowulf, there was so much stiffness with the arms, the legs, the necks, all of that. Everything in Beowulf moved like the disguised alien woman in the White House in Mars Attacks. But A Christmas Carol didn't have that problem so much.
Okay, Ive heard some people complain about the photo-realism of this film. And clearly, they need to fuck themselves in the face. This movie did not go for the fully for photo-realism. I dont know how you figure that complaint could stick to a film like this. This film was meant to be semi-cartoony. Not fully, but there are certain aspects of the film that are definitely meant to be cartoony. Now Beowulf? Complain all you want, because it was meant to be all photo-realistic, and it wasn't. It was stiff and totally bad. But A Christmas Carol certainly succeeded in what it was going for. But there are 2 scenes, or sequences that I thought were fucking incredible. The first being with The Ghost of Christmas past. There is a scene where Scrooge has blasted off into the sky, and his metal flame-coverer dissipates into glowing purple, yellow, and blue dust, and he's falling in front of the moon, I thought that was an INCREDIBLE scene to see in 3D. And the second is the sequence with The Ghost of Christmas Present, where Scrooges living room floor becomes translucent. I thought that was phenomenal.
Now it may sound as if Im praising the film. But really, Im not. Im praising the experience. This is my first of the whole slew of 3D films to come out in the past 2 years. So once I see maybe 3 or 4 more, I can step back and really look at what "good 3D" really is. I mean, Pixar's UP is one of highest rated films of all-time, and yet I hear the 3D was okay. But then I hear the 3D in My Bloody Valentine was great. And that movie looked like dogshit. So Im hoping to catch a good film, with good 3D. And I THINK A Christmas Carol is that. Definitely the most fun I had out of all the Christmas Carol movies. I still think Scrooged is the best. With Patton's A Christmas Carol right behind that (eventhough I havent seen that since middle school). But until I get a few more films in, I wont be able to separate the experience from the film. I had a fucking great time.
Now... My Avatar anticipation is in full-gear.
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The Only 5 Movies of 2010 That Im Anticipating

I thought 2009 was pretty bland (though it did have a few surprises here and there), but 2010 has almost nothing. At least the summer of '09 had some really rad movies (Im going to do a write-up at the end of the year), but this summer looks terrible. All the movies that I want to see are either before or way after the summer. The 5 movies below are really the only movies I really really really want to see. Everything else I glanced at either just look cool (The Wolfman) or bland (Iron Man 2).

And now the list:
1. The Expendables
Sylvester Stallone, Dolph Lundgren, Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Mickey Rourke, Jet Li, Jason Statham. Holy. Fucking. Hell. I think you're going to have to apply to get a licence to see this movie. That's how high Stallone has set the bar with The Expendables. Now when the news first let out, I was definately on board. Stallone, Jet Li, and Jason Statham? Cool. I mean, Ill be honest, I hate Jason Statham. I dont like him one bit. He's got no personality, charisma, or intensity about him. But I do like the idea of Stallone getting him to draw in some of the more "modern" action fans. And Jet Li is just really cool. So that was announced, and then Mickey Rourke was signed. Again, really fucking cool. And then my anticipation for this film went into fucking overdrive when... Dolph Lundgren was announced. Now, I know Lundgren hasn't done anything good since the 80's, but I dont care, I fucking love Dolph Lundgren. And Im so happy he's going to be on the big screen again, instead of a $5 cheap-o straigh-to-video bin.
But then The Expendables took a slight nose-dive. And I dont mean they casted someone really embarrassing (well 50 Cent was on board for like a day, then couldnt do it). But Kurt Russell was offered a role, and unfortunately, he passed. I slapped 26 babies because of this. But of course, EVEN MORE casting news was announced, and sent The Expendables on the right track. It was announced that Arnold Schwarzenegger was going to have a cameo as a retired Lieutenant. FUCKING. A. AND THEN... Bruce Willis was confirmed. Go fuck me. Now I know everyone has compiled a list of dream festivals, movies, and such. When I go to the IMDb Expendables page, I swear it's the exact page I would have fucking made. Just the fact that John Rambo, John McClane, and The Terminator will all be in the same frame together, it's unfathomable. And yes, it's confirmed that Stallone, Willis, and Schwarzenegger will all be in the same scene.
Oh yeah, and the story? Well, Stallone is head-leader of a group who call themselves "The Expendables", and they go to South America to overthrow a brutal dictator. But then there's some double-crossing with the C.I.A. in which Eric Roberts' (I totally forgot about him!) character is head of. And that's basically it. All in all, this movie has the potential to be one of the greatest action movies to ever be captured on film. And the date push-back from April to August shows faith from Lionsgate, which is a good thing. Push-backs are usually a bad sign, but they're pushing it to a better date, so I can't complain. The Expendables opens August 20th, 2010.
2. Wall Street 2: Money Never Sleeps
I remember the first time I watched Wall Street, I was so intrigued, and uber-curious as to how this was all going to end. And what I noticed once it did end, was that there is absolutely no physical violence throughout the whole film, all up until the scene in the park with Bud Fox and Gekko. My point is that, before watching Wall Street, I expected maybe a couple gun shots somewhere, maybe a short little cat and mouse chase, a brawl, and maybe a murder here or there. But I didnt realize that there was none of that until hours after watching it. Which shows to me how good of a fucking film Wall Street is. I never thought Id give a shit about a movie pertaining to the doings and dealings of hedge funds and stocks, but Douglas' portrayal of Gordon Gekko is just that fucking good, that it gels it altogether so well. Stallone has his two iconic characters, well Douglas has his two as well. Gordon Gekko and D-FENS. And both make those movies that much better. Because Ill admit, Im not a huge fan of Oliver Stone or Joel Schumacher (well, no surprise there). But both of Douglas' characters, and the way that he plays them, they just really make the movies work. Anyway, onto Wall Street 2...
It's going to be great to see Douglas as Gordon Gekko again. Ive seen set photos, and he looks badass. No slicked back hair yet, but I can only hope. Yeah, the movie's got Shia LeBeouf (which I dont hate, but Im still not a fan of him), Josh Brolin, Frank Langella, and Susan Sarandon. And this movie's basis is all of the bank hijinx going on. So I can only imagine what Gekko's going to do. But Wall Street 2 basically picks up with Gekko out of jail, LeBouf is dating Gekko's daughter (which he had to have RIGHT before going to jail. I dont get how theyre going to work that in, because he had a son in the movie). Im definitely on board for this, though. Wall Street 2: Money Never Sleeps is due out sometime in April, I think.
3. Shutter Island
Holy shit, was that trailer fucking nuts. I love all of Scorsese's gangster pictures. Casino, Goodfellas, The Departed, and so on. Well maybe not Gangs of New York (if you want to consider it a gangster picture). But it's nice to see Scorsese do something completely different. I mean, he's done enough non-gangster films, but this looks totally different than anything he's ever done. Now what worries me is, the push-back that this movie got. It went from October or November (Oscar season) to February. And that's not a good sign at all. But if the movie is anything like the trailer (which was really well put together), than Scorsese has another gem on his hands. One of the reasons that Paramount is saying they're pushing it back is that they dont have enough money to market it right now. Which is complete bullshit. If they didn't have enough money to market Iron Man or Indiana Jones or any of their other big blockbuster films, they would come up with the money. I just think that they're not satisfied with the close-to final product. It's probably too "strange" or "weird" for them. I dont know, I just know that Paramount has the money to market the film, and that they're fucking liars.
For those of you who don't know what Shutter Island is, it's about this detective (Leonardo DiCaprio) who goes to this insane asylum on this island (I guess like an Alcatraz, but a loony bin instead of a prison), and he gets checked in as a patient or something. I dont know, I just know that from the trailer, it looks like the movie's going to fuck with your head a lot. Shutter Island comes out on February 19th, 2010.
4. The Edge of Darkness
This movie is Mel Gibson's return to acting (I think it's been 6 or 7 years). From what I've gathered, it's a smaller drama film. But the whole creative team is pretty impressive. I mean, you have Martin Campbell who directed Casino Royale (which was really good), and William Monahan who did the screenplay for The Departed (which I would have lost my mind writing). And then of course, Mel Gibson. It's actually based on a British TV series in the 80's called "The Edge of Darkness", in which Martin Campbell actually directed a few episodes. Basically Mel Gibson plays a homicide detective, his daughter gets killed, he finds out some shit about her, there's some government conspiracy, and Mel Gibson fucks people up. To me, it sounds like a cool return to acting. The Edge of Darkness comes out January 29th, 2010 (kinda' a shitty date).
5. Tron: Legacy
This movie just looks fucking cool. I wasn't an uber-fan of Tron. I mean, it's cool. But with todays technology, and the basis of Tron, I think this movie is going to blow the first one out of the water. The 3-minute teaser they released online looks like a lot of fun. The visuals look really fucking good, the sound design was really fucking good, and best of all... Jeff Bridges is fucking back. Probably drunk as hell, too. I know Im pumped. Tron: Legacy comes out December 17th, 2010.
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Semi-Retro-Appreciation: Rocky Balboa

Now I know that Rocky Balboa was only 2006. But that movie is TOO fucking good. For a while now, I've wanted to do a write-up on it. And I have enough free time right now. So fuck it.
Believe it or not, I wasn't always a die-hard Stallone fan. There was a point where I chose Schwarzenegger over Stallone (though, I was a kid). And I remember watching the news in the summer of '06, and seeing Stallone in Philly spreading the word that they were doing another Rocky. My first thoughts, "Oh god, are you serious?". I mean, all I really really liked from Stallone, at the time, was Rambo. I've always loved Rambo. From the first time I saw First Blood on TV, I was hooked. But Rocky? Not so much. Then came the winter of 2006...
I remember the Wednesday it came out. I was working at the theatre, and my manager comes in acting like Rocky the whole day. It was actually rather annoying. But still amusing. Anyway, so once I got off work, I figured id check it out, just out of curiosity. I missed the first 20 minutes, but I kinda' understood what was happening. It was okay so far, but then it gets to the scene with Paulie in the meathouse, talking about "the stuff in the basement", and all of the sudden... I started to cry. From that point on, I was intrigued. The movie ended, and I was amazed, impressed, shocked, but most of all... I felt bad. I had been bashing Stallone all these months, and he delivers such a well-crafted movie.
Why did I feel bad? Because Rocky Balboa was basically an auto-biography of Sylvester Stallone. Not only did Rocky Balboa make you vulnerable to Rocky, but to Sly as well. Im sure Stallone didnt try to hide the fact that Rocky Balboa was a disguised auto-biography of him. I mean, look at Rocky Balboa. It's about a boxer that started with barely anything, got everything, then lost most of it. That is the life story of Stallone. I wont get into pre-actor Stallone (just watch his Inside The Actor's Studio interview), but from the peak of his career to where he is now, that was Rocky III to Balboa. Look at Stallone after Rambo: First Blood Part II... Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot, Demolition Man, Judge Dredd, Get Carter, Driven? All terrible movies. He fell off the wagon. But a shot of reality entered his brain. Rocky Balboa.
Stallone always said he was never happy with the bookends of Rocky V and Rambo III (eventhough, I love Rambo III). So I know the idea for another Rocky was always in the back of his head. But Im so glad he waited as long as he did. With the 90's came real cheese. And not the fun cheese that came with the 80's. Just real bad unenjoyable cheese (IE Judge Dredd). And Rocky Balboa is as realistic as could be. The way the franchise was going, and went, it needed a 6th film. Rocky II was another Jaws 2 (the same thing, basically. Good, but not as good). Rocky III was just not good. Rocky IV was fun, but not a true Rocky film. And Rocky V just blew horse-dick. And Rocky Balboa was the only Rocky sequel to capture the spirit of the first film.
And now to the film...
There is just so many things to love about it. The honesty of it, being my number one. It really goes back to the first Rocky. It feels just like the first one, without being a rehash. He really closes the book on the series. It's evident that he learned from past mistakes. He used an all-traditional score. There werent any talking robots. There werent freeze-frames for every scene. It was a genuine film.
Though, one thing did piss me off. And it wasn't the film. It was SOME of the fans. "It was good, but they should have gotten Adrian.". What?! The absence of Adrian is what made the film GREAT. Not because Adrian wasn't a good character. Because I loved Adrian. But the loss of her was what gave the movie it's tone. Let's put it this way... Say Adrian was still alive in Rocky Balboa, and the movie was exactly the same, but minus the Adrian-death mentionings. You wouldn't feel NEARLY as bad for Rocky as you did. Due to the fact that it would just feel like he lost an old career or hobby. But because boxing was ALL he really ever had, it made it that much more meaningful.
Truth is, Stallone restored faith in all comebacks for me. Rocky, Rambo, Indy (despite the critical response, most of you know where I stand), Die Hard (eventhough it blew hard [no pun intended]). Rocky Balboa not only gave me a boost in confidence in movies again. But in life in general. Corny as fuck, I know. But I call you a FUCKING LIAR if you watch Rocky Balboa and continue throughout your day not feeling a little better about yourself.
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Jesus. That's pretty much all I can really say about Bruno at this point. The movie succeeds on almost every level. I mean, when I wasn't laughing (which was rare for it's 88-minute duration), I was looking back at the uncomfortable audience. When I got there, I was certain I wasnt going to get a good seat. But I ended up sitting not too many rows past the first row, where the floor seats are. During every awkward dick joke, during every overly-homosexual gag, the audience behind me was sitting there in a daze, with not a smile to be seen. And you gotta' remember, this wasn't a regular post-matinee crowd. This was the midnight showing full of people anticipating the film.
Bruno, much like Borat, has quite a few scripted parts in the beginning. But that's fine, because they use 'em to get real reactions from people. So it has an even balance, as opposed to him going out into America with no plans and just act uber-homosexual. The scripted gags are hilarious, anyway. All I can say is: Bruno + wine bottle + asian boytoy + anus. Also, even the structure parallels Borat's structure. But once again, I dont mind. I mean, I cant cunt about over-used structures, when one of my favorite franchises uses the same structure throughout all four films... Indiana Jones. Speaking of which, Harrison Ford makes a cameo... Sorta.
Anyway, I dont want to give away too much, so Im going to make this review much shorter than I usually would. I dont think many people realize, but Sacha Baron Cohen is a comic genius, and he needs to be recognized more for it. When the Ali G show came out, I fucking hated it. I saw like 15 minutes and I shut it off. And I still stand on that. I still hate Ali G. That character just isn't funny. But what he has done with his two far more superior side-characters is comic gold. And Im not just talking about him doing those characters justice. Im talking about how Cohen has pushed the envelope. As I said, you may not notice, but what that man has gotten away with is unbelievable. I mean, fuck, you see almost 20 seconds of waving fully-erect penis, in a close-up shot, in an R-rated movie. I've read a couple books on the MPAA, and I thought I understood how the MPAA worked, but really, I dont think anyone has a grasp on how they operate anymore. You can show a waving erect-penis (in a close-up shot, mind you) for 20 seconds in R-rated Bruno, but you cant say a mere "motherfucker" ONCE in a PG-13 Live Free or Die Hard (which sucked anyway)? Oh yeah, that's right, you can say one "fuck" in a PG-13 film, but it cant have any sexual connotation to it. Eat my taint.
Anyway, back to Bruno, if you saw Borat and liked it, Im sure you'll love Bruno. If you saw Borat and hated it, just go waste your money on I Love You, Beth Cooper this weekend. And another thing I wanted to address, I always hear people go, "All Sacha Baron Cohen is doing is making fun of Americans, it's insulting.". Really, study the difference between mockery and exploitation. Borat/Bruno does nothing to make fun of Americans... We do it ourselves. He just so happens to make millions and millions and millions of dollars by doing so. And you know what? Im okay with that, only because middle-America is that stupid and deserves to be exploited.
Im not quite sure what audience is better to see it with. The ones clearly enjoying the film through laughing. You know, the ones who are able to take a joke? Or the ones who are clearly uncomfortable.
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Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

Okay, let me first start off by saying... This is a Michael Bay film. That being said, when you go to see a movie with the word "Transformers" in it, I wonder, what are you expecting? All I have been reading is nothing but bad things about Revenge of the Fallen, yet the same people praise the first film. I loved the first Transformers, but I aside from running time (which I didn't mind at all), and a few Jar Jar Binks-esque characters, the films dont differ too drastically.

2009 doesnt really hold too too much for me, in terms of anticipation. For instance, Transformers and James Cameron's Avatar are the top films Ive been anticipating, but not even nearly as much as I had for Rambo and Indiana Jones last year. But I was still anticipating Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen quite a bit. And I got exactly what I wanted. A quadruple dozen robots bashing the fuck out of each other across the globe. What did I get? Exactly what I just said. Yes, I had a few gripes with the film, but did it really matter to me after the fucking HOUR-LONG battle in Egypt? FUCK NO. That was insane.

Everyone instantly knew that Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen was going be way bigger than the first, due to it being a Hollywood sequel... Directed by Michael Bay. In terms of scale, this is the biggest movie ever made. It's ridiculously awesome. The movie was done with a 195 million dollar budget, but I could have sworn it cost way more to make. The CGI (as it was in the first) was fucking incredible. Not one sketchy frame in the film. Ive said it before, and Ill say it again... Transformers (2007) has THEE best CGI in any movie. And that's a fact. You can freeze-frame any transformation scene, and you will see a completely photo-real rendering job. The same goes for Revenge of the Fallen.

Now all the critics and most of the fans' main complaint about this film is, "The story was absurd! The pacing was slow! And it was too long!". Once again... Michael. Bay. Film. The story? The story is no more than it should be for a fucking Transformers film. There was enough story to drive a thousand awesome global-action sequences. The pacing, I thought, was fine. It's not like it was slow at all. The only problem I found, was the structure. And Im not even sure exactly where the structure goes wrong, but it just felt weird at times. And it's length did not bother me. If it bothers you, LEAVE THE FUCKING THEATRE. Really, if a film is running too long for you, and it's almost unbearable, then fucking leave. There was not one scene I was really bored with, so I cant really complain about the running time.

There were definitely more than enough action sequences to keep my dick hard. I mean, you have the whole Optimus Prime entrance fight scene in Japan, the forrest battle, and the whole end battle. And there's little battle sequences sprinkled in between all of them. So there was definitely enough robot action for one nerds skull. My favorite complaint of the series is, "With all the fighting, you dont even know who's who!". That is why I love it so much. It's just a chaotic, shiny, clanky, mechanical mess! It's fucking great. I love almost having seizures due to action-overload.

Now I do have quite a few gripes with the film. One, er... Two being Skids and Mudflap. Skids and Mudflap were uber fucking annoying. You know, they're the two twin ebonics-talking robots? Now, as I do hate the two characters, when I got home, I grew an appreciation for them. And because? Well, because of Harry Knowles of Aint It Cool News. When I read his review of Revenge of the Fallen, he was deeply offended. Because his nerd dreams were crushed? No, not a mention of that. He was offended due to the stereotypes brought upon Skids and Mudflap and other characters. Haha, what a cunt. I dont know about you, but the title of his review makes me love the film even more "Transformers 2 is foul-mouthed, racist & misogynistic!". Hahaha! Really, grow a dick. But yeah, all in all Skids and Mudflap were my only main gripes of the film. I mean, Im walking into a Michael Bay action film based on action figures... I expect to leave my brain at the door. But those two characters were just really irritating and corny. Another gripe was the lackage of The Fallen and Devastator action. I felt The Fallen could have battled a bit more, but whatever. Though, the Devastator transformation sequence more than makes up for his amount of screen time.

One surprise from the first film, for me, was the score. I was surprised how good and memorable it was. The first time around, I didnt really notice it. But when I saw it loaded in IMAX, that's when I noticed it. I had never heard of Steve Jablonsky before (eventhough his previous works are pretty ass [Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake]), but I was impressed with what he did with the first films' score. Though, I knew there was something familiar that I liked. Turns out, he is a protege of Hans Zimmer, so there you have it. But when he was announced to score Revenge of the Fallen, I was relieved. The score for Revenge of the Fallen isn't really anything new. It's got a few new themes here and there, but all in all it's a pretty decent score. I just really like his useage of the main Transformers theme throughout the film. It really makes my want to wrap myself up with tin foil and battle everything.

Bottom line, I dug the film a lot. And I dont really see how someone who loves action wouldn't. Does the movie have a great story? No. Does the movie have great acting? No. Does the movie have incredible structure? No. But really, what the fuck do we go to these movies for, especially when it's a Michael Bay film? The action. And that's 80% of the god damn movie. Im not making "excuses" or defending anything. If you want to see a dickload of robots destroys each other all across the planet, then fucking see this. It's as plain and simple as that. Now if you hated the first one, you'll definitely hate this one. But if you liked the first one, chances are that you might like or love this one. Was the first film better? Sure. But only because they had to establish everything still (which usually hurts a film, making it feel nothing more than a "set-up" film). But it actually helped the first film. Due to them trying not to cram too much shit in one film. But with Revenge of the Fallen, I feel as if they thought they established all they needed, and just wanted to have an orgy of nerdgasm battles left and right. And Im so glad they did.
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Retro-Appreciation: Close Encounters of the Third Kind

Close encounter of the first kind: Sighting of a UFO. Close encounter of the second kind: Physical evidence. Close encounter of the third kind: Contact.

My love for this film grows more and more the more I think about it. There is something about it that just captures me. Up until about a year or so ago, I had never seen the movie in FULL. I had always missed the beginning and caught the movie from 20 minutes in and on. Im not sure if everyone else is like me, but if I miss even just 3 minutes of a movie, Ill feel as if I had never seen it. It's weird, but that's just how I am. So when I finally bought the movie, I felt relieved that I was going to see it in full.

First let me start off by saying that since I was a kid, I had always thought that E.T. and Close Encounters could be in the same town. Eventhough E.T. takes place in California and Close Encounters takes place in Wyoming, they still have a similar looks and tone. They're both in a desert/mountain area. It just feels as if they could be in the same universe. And it's not just because of aliens. They really do a fantastic job on setting the tone and mood in both films.

Close Encounters also has that, hell Ill fucking say it, magical feeling to it. I dont find too many films "magical" (Awesome? Yes. But not usually magical), but this film gives you that overall feeling that you really cant pin-point or explain, you just FEEL it. I mean, the whole end sequence is fucking amazing. It really does make you feel more optimistic about things. At least it does for me. It has a sense of uncertainty to it. That might sound like a bad thing, but it basically says, "Yes, this is a movie, and no we're not trying to MAKE you believe. We're trying to give you the sense of not knowing what is really out there.". When the movie's credits roll with the spaceship in frame, I literally sit there dazed as to what I just saw. And that's every time (Ive watched it at least 5 times in the past 3 months, and that's not even including the 3 times tonight).

What also adds to this movie is the casting of Richard Dreyfuss. He just adds so much to this movie. His wit, his naivety, his insanity, everything. He's just great as Roy Neary. There is one scene in the film where you really feel bad for this guy. And that's the added scene with him in the bathtub, fully clothed, with the water running over him. He just looked like he was at his breaking point with his belief of extra-terrestrials, and his wife didn't believe him. The whole scene just plays really well.

Another thing that works so well, is the humor. As it does in almost every Spielberg film (aside from Temple of Doom). Two of my favorite scenes are when Roy is driving and the "car" slows down behind him, only to be revealed that it's not a car, it's a god damn spacecraft. And the second is when the aliens are taking over Jillian's house, and the vacuum rolls by and the kid says, "Clean everything up!". I love it. Little things like that just adds to a movie. So many movies just worry about the big picture. Little nuances like that can make someone like or really love a film.

And of course, you cant rant about a Spielberg film without mentioning the score. Williams really delivers in Close Encounters. This movie really does prove that simplicity is fucking key. That main 5-note tune is so incredibly good. Actually, that's what Jurassic Park and Close Encounters have in common. Both of the most iconic qualities about those movie are IN the movies themselves. Jurassic Park's being it's logo. The logo shows up on car doors, name tags, walls, mugs, shirts, gates, everything. The same goes with Close Encounters. The theme of the movie shows up almost everywhere. From when they discover the 5 notes, to when Berry plays it on his xylophone, to the classic end scene. I literally know only like... 4 things to play on piano. Close Encounters' theme being one of them. It's just so simplistic and catchy. And you gotta' love the not-fully-played "When You Wish Upon a Star" appearances throughout the movie. Yeah, in the credits, they play the song. But it's only teased throughout the course of the movie.

But one of the things I admire most about Close Encounters of the Third Kind is... The balls it has. Now I know what you're thinking, "Balls? Close Encounters may be good. But it doesnt have balls.". The movie has balls. And for one reason, and one reason only (If you havent seen Close Encounters, then I guess dont read any further?)... The ending. When you see the ending, you think, "Wow, that was good. That was pretty... Wait a minute! Dude totally just ditched his fucking family!". At least, that's what I thought. If this movie were made today, I guarantee you that the studio would have made his family show up on the landing strip to join him. Only to make it a happy ending. Only... It is a happy ending, with a sad reality. I mean, you have this guy, who has 3 kids and a wife. And he just randomly goes with a group of aliens to space for all eternity? That's pretty fucking ballsy for a family film. I mean, I know one of Spielberg's trademarks is parental negligence. But at least in E.T. there was no father to be found. In Close Encounters, the father practically just says, "Fuck this. Im going in space.". It's pretty nuts.

Oh yeah, and one of the greatest images to ever exist...
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Drag Me To Hell

Im going start off by saying, I have not seen a horror movie in theatres in years. I honestly refuse to watch horror after 1995. There are far too many reasons to really get into here. But when Sam Raimi's Drag Me To Hell was first announced, I was intrigued. As the months went on, and casting was announced, I got more curious. Fast forward quite a few months, the trailer was released. Fuck. This movie couldn't have come out sooner. I was fucking sold after the first trailer viewing. And in those few months between casting and the trailer, various film news sites had gone to screenings, and had nothing but good things to say about Drag Me To Hell.
I said I wouldn't get into my reasoning for hating new (or "nu") horror, but I kinda' have to. It's the only way to compliment Drag Me To Hell. The main problem with every new paint-by-numbers horror movie is, there's all terror, and no horror. Terror does not have to involve the brain. If Im walking down a hallway, and someone randomly pops out of a doorway, Im going to jump. It's all physical. Horror is all mental. All these new horror movies are just composited of "made-ya-jump" scenes. And I fucking hate it. There is no fear or dread behind it. It's all reflexes. Horror films need to build up an atmosphere. They need to put you in a state of fear throughout the whole film. Even when there's not the least bit of anything horrifying. Drag Me To Hell does this perfectly. Yes, the movie does have quite a few "made-ya-jump" scenes. But you know what's funny?... They're also fucking scary.
Drag Me To Hell is a perfect combination between being its own movie, and still doing it the old-fashioned way. For instance, Grindhouse. I would NEVER put Grindhouse in with a list of 10 original horror films. Why? Because Grindhouse is basically one giant homage. Did I like Grindhouse? Yeah, a little. But I dont, at all, consider it really good. It's just an imitation. Drag Me To Hell really does have the perfect balance between original and old-fashioned. Raimi does throw in a few nods back to the Evil Dead trilogy. But it wasn't anything cringe-worthy. In fact, most of them were smile-inducing. There was one particular scene where a goat starts talking, and I started to chant "dead by dawn!" in the theatre. And some of that sick Raimi sense of humor really makes me wonder... How the FUCK is this movie getting straight A+'s across the board? This film has a 95% on Rotten Tomatoes. I couldnt believe it. First of all, I really cant name one horror movie, in the past 10 or 15 years that has gotten phenomenal reviews. I really cant. I am so happy for Sam Raimi.
Now to some of the more specific things. Ill first start off with the music. I wanted to punch everyone in the face when I found out the movie's score was being released in July. This movie's score was fucking INCREDIBLE. The re-occuring gypsy violin that appeared throughout the film was great. There were plenty of times when I would be taken out of the movie in result of a certain music que being so fucking cool. Particularly one scene, and that is the scene with Christina in the graveyard. I cant really recollect what it was exactly, but I remember fucking loving it. Ill be seeing this movie at least 2 more times. But partly due to just to hear the music for that scene again. They did a really good job in the marketing of the film, in terms of music. Because I was hoping the film's music would go down the route they did in the trailer. It was very traditional, eerie, and evil. Lo and behold, who scored this movie? Christopher Young. Now, I had never heard of Christopher Young up until Spiderman 3. Now I know what you're thinking, "fuck that, Spiderman 3 sucked.". Well, that's true, but in truth, it had THEE best score of all the Spiderman films. Danny Elfman did a good job on Spiderman 1 and 2. But Christopher Young's score (especially the main Symbiote theme) fucking ruled so hard. And the weird part is that, whenever I listen to the Symbiote theme, I always think to myself, "this would be a fucking great piece to use in a horror movie". Not so much the main part of the theme, but the violins that are strumming behind, and leading up to it. And surely enough, one of the main fore-front instruments for Drag Me To Hell is the violin.
Another little thing that I really enjoyed was the title sequence, and the end title. First off, they start off with the 1970's/1980's Universal logo, which was really weird. I dont really understand why (maybe it's Raimi's favorite Universal logo?) but really enjoyed it. They actually did the same with Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, with the old school Paramount logo. Anyway, the title sequence was really cool. because the credits would roll through, and then the logo just popped up abruptly. It was in the vein of like an old 50's drive-in movie, but without being too forceful. And they did the same with the end scene. Right after the scene ended, the title popped up the same way. I know it's nerdy to go out of my way to praise that, but it's little things like that, that add to a movie. Also, the movie's title is fucking great. I cant get over how fucking cool it is. It's just so blunt and rad. DRAG ME TO HELL. I seriously wish I had thought of that for a song title or something. It's so fucking cool.
For every yin, there is a yang. I didnt have too many gripes with the film overall. My main one was the CGI. For the most part, it was pretty good. But in certain scenes, it was kinda' bad. But oddly enough, it didnt taint the film whatsoever. As I said before, it has a lot of Evil Dead II moments, so you dont really take the sketchy CGI too seriously. Also, some of the acting was kinda' not that great in parts. But some of that is due to the lines themselves. But it never really tainted a scene. Though, Im so very happy that Alison Lohman got the part in the end. Because originally, Ellen Paige got the leading role, but she dropped out. Because really, the last thing I need in this movie is some witty "woman" (because Ellen Paige looks like she's 12) to smart-talk a demon. Because you're supposed to kinda' care for this character. Not hate the fuck out her. And if Ellen Paige stuck with the role, I dont think I could do anything other than hate her.
Well, Drag Me To Hell is a PERFECT way to end the month of May. If you are like me, and couldn't give the slightest shit about a recently-made horror movie... SEE THIS FUCKING MOVIE.
Hello, Sam Raimi. Welcome back.
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Blu-Ray, Go Fuck Yourself

Okay, after about a year of experimenting... My posision on Blu-Ray has changed. Like, almost fully. But I still do believe some movies don't look right on Blu-Ray. But it really is the set-up (brand of TV, brand of player, etc.) that you have that plays a big part in whether or not Blu-Ray looks good or not. So I now officially label this blog...

V       O       I       D

It's kinda' scary when you go into Borders or Best Buy, and you see the DVD section slowly depleting. It's been almost 15 years since DVD came onto the scene. I knew there would be format changes, but I didnt think it would be this soon. Hell, the format hasn't even changed that drastically. We go from DVD to Blu-Ray. Both are discs, so why do I hate Blu-Ray so much? Well, it's simple. It looks like shit.

DVD's, to me, look like movies. They look like they were shot on film, and processed onto a disc. And to me, that looks great. They looks like movies (because that's kinda' what they are). But then HD-DVD and Blu-Ray came onto the market, and they had that infamous format war. People say the war in Iraq is pointless? Well, I can win-up that war. And that is... The format war. Back in 2007 HD-DVD and Blu-Ray competed to see as to who would be the default successor. Blu-Ray, as you may notice, has won that war. But that's really fucking retarded because... They're the same god damn thing. And Im not just throwing that statement out there with ignorance. I studied the two, and they are really the same god damn thing. Yes, there are some minor differences, but other than that, it's the same fucking disc, with two different fucking colors. The way I think companies decided as to who they were going with, was with a simple question, "What color looks better on a box?". Maroon or blue?

Now to the shit that really pisses me off... The quality. Every person I know goes nuts over the hi-definition of the picture. to quote Dr. Ian Malcom, "You're so pre-occupied as to whether or not you could, you never stopped to think whether or not you should.". And that quote plays in so well in this. Yes, it's in hi-def, and yes it's crystal clear. BUT IT DOESN'T LOOK GOOD. The quality of the picture takes away any movie-quality that film has. I saw a Blu-Ray presentation of Pirates of the Caribbean in Best Buy, and I thought, "They made a Pirates TV show?". It is not movie-quality. It looks like a fucking TV show shot on DV. When I watch a movie, I want it to look like a movie. Now yes, there are exceptions. Documentaries. I love to watch Discovery documentaries (Planet Earth and such) in HD. And there's two reasons for that. The first reason being, most of the documentaries or nature/wildlife shows I've watched were not shot on film. They were shot on HD cameras. The clarity and realism of the picture makes me feel like Im there, and it's a great experience. I dont want that with movies, I want my movies to look theatrical.

My second gripe with HD is the glitching. I know that DVD's glitch sometimes, but that's usually due to the DVD player or a scratched disc. With Blu-Ray, it's just what happens. When I was watching Pirates at Best Buy I saw it glitch almost 3 times in the 10 minutes I watched it. Not knowing whether or not it was a faulty Blu-Ray player, or a scratched disc, I looked at the TV next to it. It was playing The Pursuit of Happyness. And what happened? It glitched just as much. Total bullshit.

Though, I will give credit to Blu-Ray for it's featurettes. There's a few features where it lets you watch "making of"'s, storyboards, and a bunch of other shit while the movie is playing. I find that to be interesting. But in all honesty, I don't need that. The most interactivity I need while watching a movie is audio commentary and MAYBE alternate angles (as my Alice Cooper: Brutally Live DVD has). But other than that, I dont need anything else while Im watching the movie.

And the only time I'll watch a movie in HD is on TV. And that is solely because, the standard TV quality is pretty shitty. It's so pixelated (at least it is with Comcast). The HD quality of a movie on TV is that of a DVD. Except for the HD Discovery shows. That's true HD because most of those shows were shot with actual HD cameras.

Oh yeah, Texas Chainsaw Massacre... On Blu-Ray? What the fuck? That's a contradiction if I ever did see one.
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The Films of 2009

2009 is shaping up to be a... Decent year. I really cannot see anything in the next coming years beating 2008. In '08 we had Cloverfield, Rambo, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, The X-Files: I Want To Believe, The Dark Knight, Burn After Reading, Religulous, and so much more. This year we have quite a few good movies coming out, but Im not nearly as jacked for 'em as I was Rambo, Indy, X-Files and so on. But that isn't to say Im not strongly anticipating some of these films. So instead of rambling on about 2008, Ill ramble on about 2009...

The order Im listing these films are in the order of their release dates (as they stand now).

First up is Terminator Salvation. The month of May was awesome in '08, just for Indy alone. But this month is sadly weak. X-Men Origins: Wolverine is the opener for May, and Wolverine looks pretty lame. Gambit looks too "pretty", the FX looks pretty crappy, and their casting for some of the characters (Ryan Renolds as Deadpool?!) has been so incredibly bad, it's enough for me to not give two fucks about the movie. Anyway, back to Terminator Salvation... The movie can fail, sure. But from the looks of the trailers, it looks like it'll be a 6.5 (out of 10) at best. I mean, I can only expect so much from a director who calls himself "McG". This is supposedly the first of the new trilogy. Terminator Salvation is released May 22nd.

Last in the month of May is Sam Raimi's Drag Me To Hell. Ive said it before, and Ill say it again... HORROR IS DEAD. I really don't care to watch any horror movies made past 1995. But Drag Me To Hell looks cool. Yes, this is Sam Raimi's comeback to horror. But Im not at all expecting a masterpiece. I just want a good, classic, and creepy horror movie. That's the number one flaw with horror films nowadays, they're not creepy. They're just jumpy. James Cameron said it best, there's a difference between horror and terror. In horror films, the atmosphere should make you scared, not that lame pop-outs and loud noises. Horror is all psychological, when terror really has to do with your nerves. And Drag Me To Hell looks like a HORROR movie. Classic score, creepy imagery, and an interesting story. Am I saying Drag Me To Hell is going to bring horror back? Not at all. It's only going to be a breath of fresh air. And at this point, that's all I need. Drag Me To Hell opens on May 29th.

Next up is my absolute number one film of the year. Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. I am so fucking ready for this loud, giant, and shiny fucking movie. Back in '07 when Transformers first came out, I wasn't really anticipating to see it. Then I saw it and was quite impressed. Months after, I decided to see it IMAX, drunk, and ready. Holy shit. Was that fucking awesome. Then it came out on DVD, I snagged it, watched it, and I was hooked. Now after seeing the Superbowl TV spot with Devastator? I lost it. Then the teaser trailer came out (with literally 3 words spoken in the whole trailer), and it kicked my ass once more. I dont have a clue how they're going to top Revenge of the Fallen with 3. They go to fucking Japan and Egypt. And there's Constructicons. This is going to be so boss. Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen opens June 26th.

Next is Public Enemies. It's Michael Mann's new gangster film with Johnny Depp playing John Dillinger. The trailer that was just released looks killer. There's one specific shot with Depp holding his Tommy gun out of a car window that looks particularly badass. There's really not much else to say about it, other than this looks like a rockin' movie. Public Enemies opens on July 1st.

Following Public Enemies the week after is Bruno. Haha, I don't care how annoying the quotes from Borat have gotten. The movie is still hilarious. Bruno is Sacha Baron Cohens's next mockumentary. But instead of with an ignorant middle-eastern man, it's with an uber-flamboyant gay guy. I really don't know too much about it (since nothing has really been released yet), but I did see them shooting a clip pranking Schwarzenegger. Not sure if it's going to make it into the film though. Oh yeah, and the movie's full title is: Bruno: Delicious Journeys Through America for the Purpose of Making Heterosexual Males Visibly Uncomfortable in the Presence of a Gay Foreigner in a Mesh T-Shirt. Bruno: Delicious Journeys Through America for the Purpose of Making Heterosexual Males Visibly Uncomfortable in the Presence of a Gay Foreigner in a Mesh T-Shirt hits theatres July 10th.

The next movie Im not even sure why Im putting on this list, but I kinda' do wanna' see it just to see how bad it fails. And that's G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra. The movie I am almost 97.6% certain is going to fail. I have no idea what they are trying to do with this movie, but it looks bad. Stephen Sommers' best movie is Deep Rising, and that movie is terrible(ly) awesome. And I highly doubt he can even do the same thing (which really isn't a good thing) with G.I. Joe. I guess when August 7th rolls around, we'll see. But Im fairly certain we wont have to wait until then to know whether or not it sucks piss-farts.

Next up is Quentin Tarantino's Inglorious Basterds (spelling intentionally incorrect). I read on Latino Review, that the script Tarantino had written for this movie was incredible. But then again, that's THEM, and not ME. But Ill be honest, I was not impressed with the first trailer they released for this film. And Im going to try and not let the marketing for this film get in the way with me seeing it. But the trailer was very modernized. Which totally doesn't fit with a WWII film trailer. Hopefully the Weinstein Company gets their pants on right, and markets the film a little less... shittier when it comes closer to opening. Inglorious Basterds opens August 21st.

After August, there is absolutely NOTHING in September. So fast forward to October 2nd to Shutter Island. Shutter Island is Scorsese's new mental asylum film. The movie is based on a booked called Ashecliff Island, and from the synopsis that I read on the book, it sounds killer. DeCaprio is set to star in the movie, which is rad because eventhough I didnt really like Gangs of New York, Scorsese and DeCaprio did an excellent job together in The Departed. Fucking love The Departed. Definitely pumped for Shutter Island.

November holds only one good film. And that's The Wolfman. I saw a bootleg trailer from one of the Comic Cons, and it looks to be a very traditionally-shot film. Joe Johnson (who did Jurassic Park III) really hasn't done too much stuff that interested me, or that I liked, but I think the guy has the ability to something good. And The Wolfman might be that. He also has the great acting abilities of Benicio Del Toro, and the INCREDIBLE werewolf make-up FX done by Rick Baker (fuck yeah!) to help him out. So Im definitely giving this movie a shot. The Wolfman opens up November 6th. Oh yeah, and Joe Johnson is also partly responsible for some of the awesome FX in Star Wars, Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi, and Raiders of the Lost Ark. Props to that mo'fucker.

Up next is Peter Jackson's The Lovely Bones. I hold Peter Jackson up high on my top-directors list. From Bad Taste, Dead Alive, and The Frighteners, to The Lord of the Rings and King Kong. Peter Jackson can do it all. And that's why Im pretty pumped for The Lovely Bones. Because it's really not something he's done before. It's about a girl that gets murdered and goes to Heaven to watch over her family and killer, and has to decide between getting revenge or her desire for her family or something. All in all, it sounds pretty cool. I just really enjoy watching Peter Jackson's movies. The Lovely Bones opens December 11th.

20th Century Fox is saving the best for last. I know I said Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is my top film to see of this year. Well, it's really a tie. It's a tie between Transformers and James Cameron's Avatar. What has James Cameron been doing since he made Titanic and got rich as FUCK?! He's been making Avatar. For 12 years, Cameron has been working on this film. That includes pre-production, principal photography, and post-production (which he recently JUST started). Cameron said this is going to be the most complex film ever made. And I believe him because James Cameron is a true artist and knows exactly what he wants. Now what exactly IS Avatar? From what Ive gathered, it's a combination of Aliens and The Abyss. It's also a combination of live-action and motion capture. I have NO idea how he's going to combine the two, but I have complete faith in James Cameron. Now I (nor anyone else) have not seen ANYTHING from this movie (only pictures of Cameron on the set). It was also reported that this is the most expensive movie ever made. With a production of over 300 million (Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End was 300 mil.), I know James Cameron is cooking up some serious shit. December 18th, Im fucking there.
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Who Watches The Watchmen? Not me.

Since the deletion on my Myspace months back, Ive had the biggest urge (even more so than before) to post my senseless rants, but I couldn't. So I decided to create another Myspace. Not just for the sole fact that I want to post again. But because well... I cant creep on people's private Myspaces anymore!

Anyway, I've been asked quite a bit about Watchmen from plenty of friends, and instead of giving the same rant over and over (as I've been doing), I figured Id post it in blog form. That way, it keeps me from breaking a blood-vessel over me focusing all my body-energy into hating the tits out of Zack Snyder.

The Watchmen. Im not really sure where to even start. Well, I guess Ill start off with 300. I remember hearing all about 300 right before it came out, and then it came out and expected an uproar of negative-as-fuck reviews. Sadly, people loved it. That movie proved to me that Zack Snyder makes my top-five worst hack film makers of all-time. First he does the Dawn of the Dead remake, which was just ass. Plain and simple. Then he does 300 which was one of thee most pseudo-epic films I have seen to date.

I never planned on seeing the film. But one day it was on HBOHD, and I watched it. Jesus Christ. The movie was a helluva lot worse than I had predicted. The whole movie CLEARLY looked like it was filmed on the same 20x40 foot greenscreen set. It's one thing to know exactly how you want your film to look. But it's another to actually have atmosphere. All 300 is, is a gold sky, digital maroon blood, and... Well, basically just a bunch of diarrhea. I've concluded that the film is only 15 minutes long. The whole movie is in fucking slow-motion. I dont think that cunt Zack Snyder understands that the more slow-motion you use, doesn't make it more epic. It makes it even less tolerable. And the pseudo-epic narration does NOT help at all. It's pathetic. The warrior goes to grab some fruit... SLOW-MOTION and NARRATION! The warrior goes to lay in his bed... SLOW-MOTION and NARRATION!

And people always suck the movie's cock over how bloody it was. It was bloody? All I saw were these random digital maroon blots fly across the screen. Really, from the guy who did the Dawn of the Dead re-make, in which it's only plus was that they used all on-set blood, to 300 and using all digital blood? Get the fuck outta' here. So moving on...

The Watchmen, from what I have gathered, is no different. I have not seen The Watchmen, and I will not see it. I remember before the first trailer was released, I knew it was going to suck, and people weren't going to like it. When they released the first trailer, I was amazed. Amazed that it was so good? No. I was amazed at how incredibly shitty the movie looked, and how good of a response it got from people. I had to watch it again to make sure I was watching the same trailer as everyone else. I guess no one else saw that it looked like Mystery Men with a bigger budget. Anyway, fast-forward to March 6th when they released like 19 clips online, I watch a decent amount of them, and man... Was it 300 all over again. I mean, it was worse than I thought.

First of all, the music was GOD AWFUL. I felt as if I had been watching the clips on silent at a rave party in San Francisco. I don't know what the hell Zack Snyder was smoking when he got Tyler Bates onboard to score this celluloid-diarrhea picture, but... Well, I guess awful artists think alike. So it actually makes perfect sense. And of course the slow-mo had to be in effect for the action scenes. And I bet my balls that the near-3-hour Watchmen film would only be just-under 2 hours if Hack Snyder would have taken out all the slow-mo. And the rest of the scenes were just as fucking awful. The scoring, the level of corniness, the acting. But then again, complaining about the acting is like complaining about finding a hair in a shit-sandwich.

All in all, this movie looks AWFUL. Ill probably end of seeing it on HBO randomly, and realize that the movie is worse than I thought. But it's alright, when this movie drops more than 50% of it's box office next weekend because of bad word-of-mouth, Ill be more than happy. I love to see movies I love do well, and movies I hate fail. Yeah, it did well opening weekend, but not spectacular. Honestly, Id be surprised if it broke even.

And to the people who thought and still think this movie was "filmable", just because you can do something, doesn't mean you SHOULD.
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