It is not often that I am blown away by a movie, but this is one of those cases. If you are at all a gear head, and enjoy tales of the man and machine versus the world this is one you have got to see.Continue reading →
I have been grabbing a bunch of movies off of the TCM channel lately. Just browsing, and having my Tivo record them. Some absolute gems (Casablanca in HD is better than my DVD copy), and – to put it bluntly – turds.Continue reading →
I am going to admit that I had known about the John Wick movies, but haven’t seen them until Thanksgiving day, 2019. Mostly because they aren’t on any of the streaming platforms I subscribe to. But I was visiting my brother in San Diego for the holiday, and he has all three.Continue reading →
The other night, scrolling through Netflix, looking for something to watch, a “recommended” action and adventure movie was “Death Race 2“. The premise was pretty weak, at a prison, a television crew happened to capture a prison riot, and it had the best ratings ever for the TV station.
Parlaying this into an entertainment franchise called “Death Match” where the combatants were plucked from the general population, you can imagine that blood and gore lead to increased ratings, and money for the “well endowed” hostess of the show.
Concurrent to this was a bank robbery gone bad, and the capture of a crime lord’s #2 man, whose loyalty prevented him from rolling on his boss, and finds himself in the Wayland correctional facility.
Then we are treated to the deathmatch, live, and of course, as with all public spectacles, the initial thrill is gone, and the ratings slip, and the buxom hostess is enraged that its viewership share is dropping like a lead balloon.
One presumes that to get back the ratings, this spectacle is extended to cars, and a race (to the death), but honestly, I wouldn’t know, because the movie was awful. So bad, so poorly written, that after 25 minutes, I turned it off.
The only saving grace was a pretty good chase after the botched bank heist, where the #2 guy does a pretty wicked job of leading a chase by the police in a pretty trick Shelby Mustang.
Otherwise, this was an absolutely forgettable movie.
The other night, Barbara was out having dinner with a friend and her mother, so I was thumbing through Netflix looking for some mindless entertainment. In the “Action and Adventure” category I spied “2Fast and 2Furious”, the second installment of the Fast and Furious franchise. Wondering how bad it could be, I thumbed the select button, and started it up.
The opening scenes was a street race with 3 racers, and they needed a 4th to ‘go’, so the organizer calls someone to be the 4th, Paul Walker drives out with his GT-R (oops, Nissan Skyline) to fill the paddock.
The race commences and it is as expected, farcical, reality bending, and breaking all the laws of physics. I was inwardly groaning, especially at the “arcade” like action of bumping and pushing (much like how I race in Forza 6), but it looked completely fake on the big screen.
Of course, Paul Walker wins, and then gets busted for street racing.
Then it gets into the main storyline, the feds enlist Walker to infiltrate a really bad dude in Miami who imports a lot of drugs. The way to infiltrate is, you guessed it, to work their way up by street racing.
I think I made it to the 30 minute mark before I clicked off and went back to watching Archer reruns.
Now I know why I didn’t get into this franchise. It really really sucks. Another review for my “really bad movies” section.
Last night, while scrolling through Netflix, one of their “Recently Added” titles was Jurassic Park III. Since I had re-watched Jurassic Park, and then the less enjoyable sequel, The Lost World, my thumb tapped the play button.
Ugh, what have I done.
It starts with a boy and a man (presumed to be his father) going parasailing on Isla Sola, the “Second” JP island that we learnt so much about in The Lost World.
Of course, this goes horribly wrong and they detach from the tether and glide inland where the Dinosaurs are.
of course, parasailing doesn’t get you high enough to go in as far as they were int he early filming, but hey, let’s completely suspend belief…
The next eon is a very slow setup. You see Professor Alan Grant with (whoever Laura Dern played – yeah, that memorable) and kids. You assume that they are married, and it is their family, but oops, her husband comes in. It was just a visit. Continue reading →
On the train with Netflix viewing again, Friday night I fired up “Jurassic Park” on Netflix. Released originally in 1993, it was the first movie I recall with this much immersive CGI effects. I did see it originally in the theaters, and I recall being wowed by the cinematography.
A wealthy “Showman”, John Hammond (played by the amazing Sir Richard Attenborough) undertakes a massive program to bring the dinosaurs back to life for a modern safari park on an island off the coast of Costa Rica (in reality, the filming was done on Kauai). By extracting DNA from fossilized mosquitos in amber, enough DNA was recovered to allow the genetic engineers of the fictional InGen corporation to piece together whole DNA strands to then create the embryos of the recreated dinosaurs (more on this later in the review).
From there the embryos were implanted in ostrich or emu eggs, and carefully hatched. Continue reading →
For some reason, Netflix “recommended” the Battlestar Galactica series to me. Having vague memories of it as a kid, I thought why not, and put it on.
The Pilot is long. I mean, REALLY REALLY long. It is three 1 hour episodes (part 1, part 2, and part 3). Originally broadcast in 1978, it was about a year after the first Star Wars movie, and clearly it was influenced by the blockbuster hit that preceded it. A space opera, with action and special effects to captivate the audience.
The premise is that an ancient race of cyborgs (the Cylons) are ostensibly engaging with humans to negotiate a long term peace. Of course, they really are planning on wiping out the humans, to cleanse the universe of these pesky life forms.
I can admit that there is something about scifi movies with Milla Jovovich kicking ass that I just enjoy watching.
My first exposure was with the SciFi comedy “5th Element” a movie that I have watched probably 100 times, and to this day think is probably Luke Perry’s finest acting ever, it is a thoroughly enjoyable romp. Many memorable lines in the movie, starring Bruce Willis, Ian Holm, as well as Gary Oldman as the bad guy.
Who can forget the epic line: “Multipass”? Geeks everywhere get the reference.
This catapulted her career as a kick-ass protagonist in the genre.
Following The Fifth Element comes the slick production of Ultraviolet, where she again just reigns supreme. The premise being: Continue reading →