So a while ago I posted a conversation with my best friend Dave about how he accidentally sat on a Hot Pocket and burned the crap out of his ass. It was hilarious and a lot of fun so I think I am going keep an eye out for gems like the one we had this morning about John Wick 2.
Dave C: Yay John Wick 2! Will it be personal this time?
Dave I: Not another dead dog!
DC: Two dead dogs and a kitten.
DC: He killed all the Russians. Nest time the Chinese blow up the animal shelter he volunteers at.
DI: What if a dog killed his dog?
DC: He goes after the breeders.
DI: What if cancer killed his dog?
DC: He goes microcellular.
DI: What if his dog was implanted with an Alien and the alien killed it when it burst from the dogs chest but it was still part of his dog and kind of cute in a dog/alien sort of way?
DC: Awesome. You should courier it over to Paramount.
DI: LOL. I see inner conflict.
DC: Maybe the dog turns into a werewolf and bites the car, making the car a werecar.
DI: What if the dog has the microbes to stop the zombie apocalypse but the only way to get them is in a big blender?
DI: What if he took the dog from the last movie to the Pet Cemetery and it became zombie dog?
DC: Oops boss just called. Gotta go.
That was pretty much the end. Bosses don’t really understand the importance of discussing motivation for Keanu Reeves characters. Alien image courtesy of the horror movie t-shirts category. Let me know if you think these are funny and I’ll keep an eye out for them.
the Infamous Dave Inman
What I object to is bad musicals like this one: tertiary stories with immemorable music in place of dialog sung by people who were hired for their star appeal rather than their singing ability. The music is non stop and takes up the space normally held by dialog (thus making every dialog another glass chewing grind fest). It is punctuated by a few moments of speaking and I was grasping on those like a man trapped under the ice trying to breath little air pockets. The songs are really just two songs as sung by either a man or woman. The female songs are all rising inflection ear bleeders and the male songs angsty suicide dirges. Also I thought it was established in Sweeney Todd that Johnny Depp can’t sing (Sorry dude. I do like you a lot but this film in not your rocket car).
Then there is the story. Honestly I have always thought a new take on a classic fairy tale cold be really cool and every time I see a new one coming down the Hollywood outflow pipe I get my hopes up. I keep hoping to see Snow White rewritten by Chuck Palahniuk and directed by James Cameran as an Alien sequel (image courtesy of the horror movie t-shirts). Instead I keep getting brain softening rehash of better Disney movies like this one. As I have said on other cruddy multi story films (cough cough New Years Eve cough cough) when you have more than one story thread you lose connection with the audience and the problem compounds itself as you add more. This film had Cinderella, Jack and the Beanstalk, Rapunzel, Little Red Riding Hood, and maybe Thumbelina and honestly by switching back and forth between the stories you never connect with any of the characters enough to care. If I were someone who had never seen or read a fairy tale I would have been both completely lost and apathetic.
This is another one that flies under my personal radar but when I see it I love it. If I ever had the guts to shave my head I would totally do a Ruk costume for a convention. I definitely have the size. However it will always be Sherry Jackson in the x-costume that I remember most fondly. It pretty much introduced me to the concept of side boob.
That being said the story was great and I loved seeing Lurch in a different role. Ted Cassidy was great as a character actor and actually you would benefit from reading his Wikipedia article. He was a very interesting person and had a cool life. He was also very intelligent. I think the coolest part of Ruk was seeing bald Lurch as he could look when angry. A pissed off 6’9″ Frankenstein-ish monster is not something you want to deal with. (classic image courtesy of the Horror Movie t-shirts)
This was kind of a ground breaking episode as it set the tone for every machine intelligence episode that followed. The whole question of the Doctor’s humanity from Voyager can be seen as started here. The morality of the concept was better explored in the Ultimate Computer but the actual sentience was first looked at here. Once again Star Trek breaks new technological ground that we are dealing with today.
the Infamous Dave Inman
Season 1 is such a wealth of great episodes (well, except for the Alternative Factor and This Side of Paradise) and this one is is near the top of that list. I loved this episode. Of course the whole “crash landed shuttle craft” theme was then stolen by every series following even shows that really had no business exploring stuff (I’m looking at you, DS9) and even surfaced in Fallout 2.
It should be obvious to any of my four regular readers that I am a huge Spock fan and this show was all Spock. He is extra cool in this one and the fact that the human crew don’t understand his flawless logic even in doing something illogical shows how much he is at a higher level.
On the other hand this episode was kind of hard on red shirts. One thing I’ll give Next Gen and the later shows is they gave their shuttle craft more equipment than six phasers and some retro 70’s post modern furniture. Seems like had they had even one mounted phaser they could have used that to shoot the bigfoots or even drain the battery for more power (image courtesy of the horror movie t-shirts).
Anyway, great episode and one I enjoy a lot.
the Infamous Dave Inman
That is not to take away from writer/director Dan Gilroy. The script and screenplay were excellent. The direction nigh flawless. This is his first directing debut and honestly I can’t wait to see what he does next. Given the amount of raw sewage that is pumped out of Hollywood on a weekly basis it’s very refreshing to see someone with talent get his moment to shine and not blow it.
In a normal review this is where I would say something like “for all that it did have a few problems…” and then list them in detail but I honestly can’t think of one. If I were still doing the old stars/black holes system this film be one of the very rare zero black hole films. The only criticism I can offer is while I enjoyed all 117 minutes immensely I honestly don’t feel any need to go back and see it a second time. I don’t think there will be anything to gain from a second theater viewing and will be happy to watch it on a couch at movie night. I felt the same way about Argo (another film I verbally orgasmed about) whereas certain movies (Guardians of the Galaxy) keep sucking me back into the cinema.
I’d like to offer one more comment and that is how much I enjoy seeing Bill Paxton in films like this. I’m sure everyone remembers him as either Hudson from Aliens (“Game over, man! Game over!” Image courtesy of the horror movie t-shirts category) or Chet from Weird Science (“How about a nice greasy pork sandwich served in a dirty ashtray?” but I became a fan when he played Severen in the greatest vampire movie of all time, Near Dark (basically white trash vampires with guns. “I hate ’em when they ain’t been shaved.”)
The story. A girl (Shelly Hennig) plays around with a Ouija board by herself and kills herself. Her best friend Laine (Olivia Cooke), Laine’s sister Sarah (Ana Coto), and three other Red Shirts (Daren Kagasoff, Bianca Santos, Doughlas Smith) try to use the board to contact Debbie but instead contact the ghost that killed her. The kids start dropping off one by one like participants in a game of musical chairs and it’s up to Laine to figure out what is going on. At this point just switch over to any vengeful spirit episode of Supernatural and substitute two hot sisters for the two hot brothers and you are good to go. Turns out the last occupant in the house was a medium who had two daughters and killed one of them while talking to spirits and the other daughter killed the mother and the girl is buried in the basement and they need to release the spirit and then they need to burn the body Supernatural style and…
I’m sorry did I fall asleep there? Looks like there is a limit to how many cliches I can recount in a day before falling into a coma. So how about this movie you ask? Meh. The atmosphere stuff works really well and if being startled by a door shutting and showing you a creepy man/boy who wasn’t there a second ago (it was just one of the boyfriends) gets your blood pumping you won’t regret it. However if you are looking for either an original story or a body count movie this will bore the crap out of you. Acting wasn’t bad nor were the special effects given the budget (I can literally see the PA in my mind they had thumping on walls and floors). However the formulaic nature of the film and the gore smothering PG-13 rating will leave you with nothing to grab onto. See it if there is nothing else good on but honestly I’d rather have seen John Wick a second time. 2 of 5 Phasers.
Looks like kind of a lame movie weekend honestly. I have a couple of cultural commentary blog I have been thinking about so maybe I will do those this weekend. I suppose I should go see Box Trolls and am excited about Nightcrawler so I will have something for you this weekend. Thanks for reading.
the Infamous Dave Inman
(BTW the image is actually a t-shirt we have in the horror movie t-shirts category. Even I get surprised by what we have sometimes).
Day 2 continued. Arachnid Tribbles, More Corsets, and Lasers.
Turning around I talked with a very striking and tall young lady with a shaved head whom I’d seen wondering the floor in the convention earlier. She sat at a booth of splendid little hand-made black fuzzy things that looked like arachnid tribbles as designed by Jim Henson’s creature shop (I mean that in the best possible way). The shop is called Monster Pet Emporium and the young lady was named Alice, I think (I didn’t write it down because I’m not a very good journalist). You can find them on Etsy or Facebook and the monsters are made by someone with the handle of Grue, which I also dig. (The facehugger image I pulled from Dave’s horror movie t shirt collection and seem appropriate especially given the next paragraph)
I was feeling a bit fatigued by then and went to a dim corner where the dudes who run Corset.net, Ben and Dan, were hanging out and talking about other upcoming conventions they would be attending either as fans or as vendors. They were going directly to Gilroy after the vendor room closed that day to party with the Northern California Renaissance Faire people. Then in February in San Jose they were talking up Panthea Con, an alternative and pagan spiritual con. They also had some really beautiful stuff at their booth, from Elizabethan era recreations to very high-fashion modern boned corsets, but unfortunately I had already found the only corset for me and I was anxious to leave the vendor’s room at that point.
Next to them was a small booth with a young man sitting and he seemed a bit ignored with all the larger booths surrounding him so far from the entrances to the hall. So I stopped to talk to him. His name is Barry Figgins and he is a laser-smith at his own company, called Lyris, which sounds every bit as awesome as it in reality is. He had hand made (well, laser cut from fitted wood pieces a Settlers of Catan game board to look like it was actually made in medieval times. I don’t play that game, but I know a ton of people who would love that kind of thing. What really spoke to me was that he had a bunch of cool functional art pieces that he’d made, like a wood box held together with tiny magnets to hold dice or a 3-d map of San Francisco. Plus, he was laid back and cool in that way that makes nerds think, “This is the kind of guy I want to show up at my weekly game”, regardless of what type of game it is you’re running. He handed me a wood carved, laser inscribed business card and told me he has more free time than sense, so it’s actually a lot more cost effective than it seems.
11. Peter Venkman from Ghostbusters.
This one’s a no brainer. I would want Venkman to be my friend because he is just funny and sarcastic as hell. Of course this could totally backfire when he started making fun of me and treating me with contempt like he does pretty much everyone. However I think I could hit him back with the fact that he has a PhD in a pseudo science and got fired for doing nothing but torturing undergrads. On the other hand he is pretty smooth with the ladies and kind of a horn dog. I don’t know if I need that competition.
Why would Venkman want to be my friend? I honestly am struggling with this one. He seems to have no real friends just guys he works with and treats with contempt and disrespect. I guess he is friends with Stantz and Egon but doesn’t show them a lot of love. This is a situation where I would have to count on my natural charm to win him over. In the castle in my head everyone loves me.
By the way the Ghostbusters logo I found in the Horror Movie t shirt category but for the life of me can’t decide if it belongs there or not.
6. Grandpa Munster
Admit it. You know without a doubt that Grandpa Munster would be a blast to hang out with. Herman too, but Herman is nothing without Grandpa. He is a dirty old man vampire who can whip up magic potions and has his own laboratory in the basement. Plus he’s always smiling and having people smiling around you is a great way to pick up your attitude. Hanging out with him would give me the chance to solve two great Munsters mysteries: where does he get that amazing hair cut and if he is Lily’s father why is he called Grandpa Munster? Shouldn’t he be Grandpa Dracula (Lily’s maiden name. Never try to out geek-fu me!).
Why would Grandpa want to be my friend? Honestly I don’t think he needs an excuse. He is so friendly and cheerful that I think he just likes everyone (or at least likes sucking out everyone’s blood, although that part was never really addressed in the Munsters). Plus with all the schemes and shenanigans he and Herman get into I’m sure another friend and/or alibi might come in handy.
Grandpa image from the horror movie t-shirt category.
Of course when you think of Star Trek the Original Series this is one of the first episodes that come to mind and for good reason. It has some very cool Spock development, is a perfect example of the bond of friendship that was such an important part of this series (and kind of lacking in all the latter shows. In almost all of them the friendship was just assumed and kind of perfunctory, while in this show it seemed truly genuine) and let’s see. I think there’s one more thing that’s escaping me. Hmm. What is it? Oh, yeah. THE GREATEST FIGHT SCENE IN TV OR MOVIE HISTORY.
I will argue this to my grave. In truth it wasn’t the best choreographed (although it was brilliantly choreographed) nor was it the most athletic or brutal, but the greatest dramas occur when you see stuff happen to characters you care about and you know are in a bad spot. In this sense you can’t let this one go with less than the top prize. Kirk knows he doesn’t really have a chance against Spock nor does he want to hurt him. Spock is frenzied and actively trying to kill Kirk but you know he really doesn’t want to while McCoy stands helpless to the side. A more dramatic fight scene you won’t find.
Sure, you can talk about the fight scenes from They Live, or Enter the Dragon, or the Empire Strikes Back as brilliant fight scenes (and they are. They Live image courtesy of the Horror Movie T-Shirt category) but put all the camera and chroreography on a level playing field and you will not ever find a better, more engaging fight. Of course it is all set to the greatest fight music song off all time in my humble opinion (as an aside, should you ever come to trade fisticuffs with me and for some reason the Star Trek fight music is playing in the background prepare to have your ass handed to you six ways to Sunday. There isn’t a song in the world that gets my blood pumping harder or my aggression more up. On the other hand if you manage to get something by One Direction or Justin Bieber playing I will probably just roll up into a fetal position and let you kick me in the stomach until I puke up my small intestine).
Anyway, if you want to see the power of this scene watch it and then go watch Cable Guy again (one of Jim Carrey’s most underrated films). Also, while this observation probably won’t go over with all two of my female readers but this fight, like most brutal fist fights between best friends (and casual acquaintances) is all the girls fault. Just saying.
the Infamous Dave