Posted on 1/07/05 10:24 AM
In my opinion, this is Schwarzenegger looking his best and acting his best. He truly IS a barbarian. The accent is perfect as is his acting ability (which IMO isn't much).
We all know the story...boys villiage is raped and plundered by Thulsa Doom and his ruthless gang of thugs. Boy is sold into slavery and grows up to be an Ultimate Fighting Championship killer...literally. He is freed by his owner and seeks to find and murder the man who killed his family. Along the way Conan meets another warrior and a woman he falls in love with. They all get a tip from a king whose daughter has been possessed by Thulsa Doom (played excellently by Vader himself, James Earl Jones) so off they go. Much blood is shed with heads being lobbed off, spearings, crucifixions, guttings...you get the picture. A barbarian movie!
The movie is now 23 years old but has not aged too bad over the years. I think the timeless quality of the story helps a lot. As does the very good special effects. Make sure you pick up the uncut DVD that was relesed several years ago. The sound specs on the disc stink (dolby mono) but the transfer and extras are decent. I wonder why there wasn't at least Dolby Digital 5.1 or better yet, DTS?
All in all, this is a movie that I will watch over and over as the years roll by. A time when Schwarzenegger was in his prime (or at least coming into it) and he didn't mind taking cool roles like this instead of the crap he has served us the past 5 years or so (minus the excellent T3).
Posted on 1/07/05 09:49 AM
I have owned this movie on DVD for over a year now (Asian release bought off of e-bay before Miramax caught on to what was happening). I have watched it now twice and I can say, while not as good as House of Flying Daggers it still packs an ass whooping, soul searching punch.
Story, In ancient China, before the reign of the first emperor, warring factions throughout the Six Kingdoms plot to assassinate the most powerful ruler, Qin. When a minor official defeats Qin's three principal enemies, he is summoned to the palace to tell Qin the story of his surprising victory.
In ancient times China was divided into seven kingdoms. Qin, the king of the northern province, is under permanent threat of assassination attempts. His greatest fears are the warriors "Broken Sword", "Flying Snow" and "Sky". One day one of the magistrates of his kingdom enters the palace, claims that he defeated all three of the emperor's adversaries and tells his story; how he beat "Sky" in a duel and used the love between "Broken Sword" and "Flying Snow" to subdue them. (I got this info off of IMDB)
Now, I have yet to watch the uncut version (although I do own it as well) I must say, this was simply breathtaking. Jet Li's best performance to date as the Nameless assassin and Ziyi Zhang as Moon. He beauty is more captivating with each movie I see her in. The fight on the water was shear genious. Hell, almost everything in it was. I must recommend though, watch this one before you check out House of Flying Daggers. The story might be a bit better in this one but the combat in HOFD is IMO way better.
Posted on 1/07/05 08:11 AM
Lucio Fulci's 1979 classic splatter flick "Zombi 2" aka Zombie, has recently been reissued on DVD with two new transfers. One from Blue Underground and the other from Shriek Show. I own not onlt both of those copies but the onle Anchor Bay 1997 DVD original release. I'll get into the transfers and extras in a bit, but first the movie.
If you are reading this any you are a horror fan, chances are you have either seen this or at the very least heard of it. The movie starts out with a boat entering New York harbor. Upon futher investigaion of the boat, the police find that there is a zombie on board...the cops die...brutally.
Anyway...it ends up there is an island somewhere in the Caribbean where this boat came from where the dead are coming back to life and its up to a group of people to a.) get off the island b.) find a cure and/or reason for what is going on and c.) die violent horrible deaths.
This movie has one of the coolest gore scenes in memory. The eyeball through the wood splinter. Not only does the camera not pull away, it gets up close. Nasty. The reason to watch this Lucio Fulci classic is mainly for the constant bloodshed and way cool looking zombies. I must say also, this has a great, haunting ending. Like I said, I have 3 different versions on DVD.
Anchor Bay's release looks like a slightly cleaned up VHS transfer...which actually works making the movie still very grainy and gritty which in fact, makes it more nasty...like you're watching something that wasn't meant for public display.
Blue Underground has IMO the best transfer but is lacking in the extras department.
Shriek Show makes up in that eara with a second disc full of interesting information on the making of, special effects and the like.
For the money, I would go with Shriek Show. The picture is damn near as good as the BU version and the extras rule. All in all, I loved this low budget gross out from Fulci. While not his best (that would be The Beyond) this is a close second. Check it out, you won't be dissapointed!
Posted on 1/07/05 05:11 AM
So, last night I finally watched Eternal Sunshine and the Spotless Mind with my wife. What an incredible movie. Skitch has been bragging this one up for some time now.
If this isn't Oscar bait, nothing is. Too bad it was released earlier in the year and is on DVD now, that can't help its chances. Anyway, back to the picture...
The sheer brilliance of the twisted story is only hitting me now, a day after I watched it. I was kinda frustrated with the whole thing when I first watched it but when it was all said and done, I loved it.
The story in short...man (Jim Carrey) falls for quirky girl (Kate Winslet) and they have a wonderful releationship that ends up being doomed. The catch is, we the audience see this romance in reverse beings he is having her erased from his memory via some doctor and his three assistants.
Michel Gondre (spelling?) directed this and it looks a lot like his videos, quirky and weird. The acting is superb a is the music and well...just about everything else. To say anything else about the storyline would be to ruin it. But what a love triangle this turns out to be. Several of the scenes are ahunting me today as the last scene with Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet saying there goodbyes in a house by the ocean. wow...
see it, as fast as you can. This my friends, is good filmmaking.
Posted on 1/06/05 11:11 AM
Every time I watch another Friday the 13th movie I like it less and less. This fourth installment was at one time not only one of my favorite Friday the 13th movies but one of my favorite horror movies in general. Wow how time can age a movie for the worse.
For those of you that might need a refresher on this movie...it picks up directly where part 3 leaves off with Jason being carted off in the patty wagon. At the hospital he awakes (of course) and kills a doctor and nurse for a nice gory little intro. After that it's same old, same old with Jason killing off a bunch of 80's looking teens in a house next to a family with a creepy kid played by Corey Feldman (haha!).
Joseph Zito (Missing in Action and The Prowler) directs this with as much style as you would expect from a cheezy 80's horror entry. The love interests in this movie are about as believable as some porn flick and the hair and clothing styles are a riot. Here are some reasons to check it out if you haven't already:
1.) Tom Savini gore (although you can clearly tell much was edited out...damn you Paramount for not releasing the new boxed set fully uncut), still the machete to the head ending ruled.
2.) A few nice titty scenes from actresses you have never heard of and probably havent seen since.
3.) Corey Feldman looking like the biggest nerd on planet earth at the films climax complete with skin tight short cut off shorts, a lame summer camp looking shirt and a bald head. I think he had tube socks on as well. So lame he's almost cool...ALMOST. Runner up for biggest nerd in the movie, an almost unrecognizable Crispin Glover (!) as the teen dork who is called "dead f*ck" becasue of his lack of preformance in bed.
4.) The classic Jason music which I still think is great after all these years.
5.) And of course, Jason himself. This one takes place (obviously) before the series low point part 5: A New Beginning that featured even worse actors and a worse storyline (it's not even Jason!). Jason looks like a big mean retard in this before he gets to look really cool in Jason Lives.
If you're a fan of cheezy 80's slasher flicks or a die hard fan of Friday the 13th you could go worse. Then again there are better entries in this series like parts 1, 6, 7 (best looking Jason) and Freddy vs. Jason.
Posted on 1/06/05 09:54 AM
sooooooo....there was another reason this thing bombed at the box office other than it was released during the crowded summer movie season. It sucks! The acting makes in this makes the acting in all three Spy Kids movies look realllllll good.
Let me start by a short synopsis of this turkey. It's obviosly based on the old puppet show on TV back in the 60's I believe and features a father and his 4 sons who fight disasters and crime on earth in their shiny spaceships they have stored on some tropical island. Ben Kingsley (looking embarrased through the whole mess) is the villian out to steal the Thunderbirds rocket and rob Englands largest bank.
The Thunderbird crew are marrooned on a spacestation so it is up to young Alan Tracy to save his dad and brothers along with his two friends (one of which is a hot little number that will probably be a sex symbol in the coming years...I feel dirty for even saying that).
What makes this movie so painfully bad is the overacting and terrible "feel good happy" script. Sure I know this is a kiddie flick but at least make it witty ala Pixar movies or even the Spy Kids movies. Jonathan Fraiks (Star Trek: Next Generation) directs this with total Spy Kid rip off in mind and it shows.
I gave this a three rating for three reasons:
1.) The hot blond chick that is after Bill Paxtons package.
2.) Bill Paxton, he can turn a sh*tty character into gold.
3.) The special effects, while not overly great, were above average, thus earning a point.
I would give another point to the young starlett of the movie as well but that would be a dirty old man thing to do.
reason #1 to see it:
reason #2 to see it:
reason #3 to see it:
and another reason to watch it...heh, heh...
Posted on 1/06/05 05:30 AM
Not sure if any of you have heard of this movie, the link above to RT is not the correct movie as they don't have this one in their database. Another video nasty that I'm sure has been rarely seen. The movie is directed by a spanish guy named Nacho Cerda and is only about a half hour long.
It deals with an auto accident where a girl dies. She is taken to the morgue where one of the two morticians there is left alone..........to do whatever he wants to the corpse. Not since Flower of Flesh and Blood have I been this disgusted with what I saw. What is so effective about it are the extremely high production values and special effects. You believe what you are viewing.
I won't give too many graphic details away on this one but let's just say the blood flows like rivers and the sex hasn't been this ugly since Irreversible. Not for the squeamish that's for sure. I give it an 8 rating because of how it has stuck with me, this is not a pretty or fun picture. Unless you get off on this sh*t, which, if you do....seek help, now. I have this movie on DVDR as it has only been released to video in Spain years ago. I believe Unearthed Films is releasing it soon in the states here anong with another Nacho Cerda film on one DVD. Check out their site, www.unearthedfilms.com
Posted on 1/06/05 05:04 AM
Skitch told me this version improves much over the fairly terrible theatrical version. I watched it last night and I still felt...bleh.
Another comic book superhero story this time involving a kid whos senses are all heightened after being blinded as a kid. He groes up to be Ben Affleck the blind lawyer who at night kicks bad guy tail.
The relationship between him and Jennifer Garner who plays Elektra (another superhero) doesn't work...at all. Nor does the "me too" special effects, Spiderman, X-Men, Blade and even The Hulk have MUCH better and more convincing special effects. You would think with a bigger budget this movie could have also had a better writer as the story is just, well...not all that interesting.
Coolio can't act and I can see why his scenes were cut for the theatrical version although it his inclusion does flesh out the story better. I will admit, this is a superior version than the theatrical one, but still all in all...not a very good movie to begin with. Side note, the Bullseye character played by Colin Ferrell was the best part of this thing.
You can put whipped cream on top, you can put M&M's in it, you can put whatever you want into it...the fact is, sh*t is sh*t.
Posted on 1/05/05 01:19 PM
TaeGukGi...director Je-gyu Kangs follow up to Shiri about the Korean war back in 1950. It begins with two brothers, Jin-tae and Jin-seok who live with their mother and have bright futures ahead of them. When the war breaks out they are thrust unwillingly into the war on the side of the south.
Their friendship is stretched to the limits as Jin-tae gets promoted continually after risking his life in suicide mission (he is secretly trying to get his younger brother out of the war by these honorable acts). Jin-seok doesn't know how much his brother is sacrificing for him and things go downhill from there.
This movie has been compared to Saving Private Ryan and Platoon as being one of the best war movies captured on film. I for one agree. This film goes beyond what Saving Private Ryan showed us on the horrors of war. Blood is shed at the drop of a hat. Brain matter flies and limbs are torn left and right.
I have the directors cut of this film which runs 10 minutes longer. I do believe there is some more character development and bloodshed in this version (which runs at 2 hours and 30 minutes) but it is well worth it. Pick up a copy on e-bay if you get a chance (it hasn't been released here in the states yet), you won't be dissapointed. In my honest opinion, this is about as good as it gets when it comes to war movies. But, and trust me on this...this is not the feel good movie of the year. It is a sad tale of war and loss. See it, it's a masterpiece of South Korean filmmaking.
Posted on 1/05/05 11:37 AM
Watched this one over Christmas vacation. What a hoot this 1984 "shocker" is. I have watched this movie faithfully every Christmas for the past 18 years and will more than likely continue doing so now that it has been released to DVD a year or so ago.
This is fairly simple slasher stuff here. Kid sees his parents killed by a crazy santa on Christmas Eve and is then taken to an orphanage where mean, cruel Mother Superior treats him like crap for some 8 to 10 years. He then gets a job at a toy store and hasa to wear a Santa suit over Christmas which flips him out and he goes and kills a bunch of people in fairly gory ways (especially for a shasher flick).
This movie had a lot of controversy surrounding it when it was released in 1984 about it featuring Santa Claus as a killer. It got pulled soon after it was released only to find a long life and many sequels on video. Sure it is cheezy, smutty and violent (especially a great deer antler scene and a nice sleigh ride beheading by way of ax) but for some reason it has found a place in my heart as on of my very favorite movies.
Probably because I saw it at a fairly young age. I had never seen anything quite like it before so I was blown away at the gore quotent. Trust me, this is in no way a really good movie but purely enjoyable trash.
Oh yeah, the original Christmas songs featured on this movie are hilarious!