Wolfcop

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2014

In the small of Woodhaven (Canada) there’s this cop Lou Garou (save the groaning for later) and he’s a pretty sorry excuse for a police dude as he goes to work late, drinks a lot, vomits (how lovely) and pretty much just drags his sorry self around at half speed. The town is messed up too with crime, corruption and other such nastiness. We get to witness more evidence of Lou being almost worthless at his job and he has some kind of relationship with the bar owner Jess. One night Lou goes out on a call to the woods and some oddness happens and he gets knocked out. He wakes up at his place and soon realizes his facial grows back really fast, his senses are more acute and oh yeah he has a big bloody pentagram carved on his chest. He has to rush back out to the woods to where the dead body of a the guy who was running for mayor has been found. This guy seemed straight and had vowed clean up the town if he won over the old mayor, but it appears like he was a junkie and overdosed. Lou continues to be overwhelmed by his new powers. One night while at Jess’ bar he gets attacked by robbers, but he gets all hairy and rips some of them apart. One of these guys runs back to his boss who was definitely targeting Lou. Lou eventually falls in with local loon Willie who coaches his wolfishness out and rides around in the newly modeled wolfmobile stopping crime. Meanwhile the writers realized they need a little more plot involving something that happened years ago. Something funny happened to Lou’s dad (also a cop) and Lou’s co-worker Tina lost her dad (who used to own the bar that Jess now owns). Lou’s fuzzy alter ego continues to kill baddies, but when Willie calls in to someone else behind Lou’s hairy back we know that something is up and that Lou is being set-up. Tina is beginning to think that Jess is on some plot and likely so are others in the town. So the town has crime, murder and plots to do more badness-guess I won’t be moving there anytime soon. Eventually this all leads to everyone ending up out in the woods for the final showdown. There’s rednecks, shooting, blood, shape shifters and an attempt to tie everything up and finish this beast off. Let’s just say Tina is pretty much the only one in town who wasn’t against Lou and they survive. They ride off in the wolfmobile and we get the promise or threat of a sequel. Roll the credits ahhwhooooo!

The bad-The film has a lot of humor and from the title we knew that it would. The problem is that the humor is often limited. Yeah, he’s a cop and a werewolf, but that part wears thin sooner than I wish it had. The acting isn’t the best by a long shot.

The good-If you like violence there’s plenty of that in both blood and flesh ripping as well as shootings a plenty. I thought the effects and make-up were all quite decent  given the obviously limited budget. I definitely liked the wolfmobile. The outside settings were very good, the shot of the three cloaked figures going across the field was particularly memorable.

The makers of this film are obviously fans  of both 80’s werewolf films like An American werewolf in London, The Howling, Silver Bullet and even Teen Wolf as well as 80’s shoot ’em action films. They try to combine the two genres. Overall it’s a decent but flawed film. I really wanted  to love it, but felt like just over halfway through it had done most of what it was going to do. Despite being a horror comedy we still should have been given some reason for us to like Lou and I never felt that connection. If you like werewolves and mindless action flicks then give it a try.

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Guardians of the galaxy

 

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Yes, I was on Star Trek, but no I wasn’t green then.

 

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Shhh, the raccoon is going to talk.
2014
So a thief, a green woman, a shirtless wrestler, a talking raccoon and a tree dude come together. Wait is this the set up for a bad joke your grandpa would tell or a movie? It could be either, but since I saw it the other day it seems like it might be another movie. This Starlord guy began as an earthling who was abducted by space pirate type fellows. So was he Starlad when he was little? No, I don’t think so. He and the characters above are all drawn together around this orb thing that others want to. Greed and lust for power motivates various characters to go after this orb thing. Blah, blah, blah get on with the action because we didn’t check out a superhero movie for a deep plot. There’s a prison, a jailbreak, deceit, space action and bad guy snarling. I think they play some 70’s music here and there to promote their soundtrack. Everyone laughs at the talking raccoon, wahahaha or they laugh at the talking tree and his one line “I am….what was that name again”. So the greedy heroes act less greedy and the short sighted heroes act more long sighted like they care about someone besides themselves. Eventually sides are drawn for a big space battle. Yeehaw get them doggone lasers fired up! Phew, phew, phew those CGI ships shoot it up and some snappy dialog is tossed in between all this action. A major hero dies (but he’ll be back for the sequel I’m sure), the bad guy dies right away-yeah right you know they have to stretch this thing out and have the baddie last for a while. The heroes come together to win-oh how sweet. Roll the credits and rake in the bucks.

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Tell me when stench is gone and I’ll take this thing off.

The negatives-This movie doesn’t really do anything new. At times it comes across like what happens when a bored five year old pulled all their action figures, space ships other toys together and played with them all at once just going from battle to battle.

The positives- The character become likable and work well together. The acting is overall very solid. The action is non-stop and everything looks top notch.

The lesser known Marvel characters become more known and the film was a well deserved hit. I went in thinking I’d liking it came away thinking it was the best I saw in 2014.

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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

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2014

This is a story about a courageous female newsperson whose father was in on creating these powerful turtles, she discovers a metallic coated evil dude, she tries to convince her silly co-workers about what is going on but they go on being stupid and….then she. Wait, a turtles movie is supposed to be about the Turtles you know like the title says. However in this version April seems to take priority. Eventually we see the lumpy looking turtles and they do some fighting in between April’s parts. Shredder looks he was built by a bored hardware store employee, but he gives his evil portrayal-wahaha or something. There’s a meany pants scientist in this too and he has some lame brilliant plan that can’t possibly fail-okay of course it fails. The personalities of the turtles are developed more and more as the film progresses…just kidding this is the April show so the turtles just whiz bang in for some brief action here and there. There are some explosions, some fights, some lame jokes and eventually the film ends. Good Lord roll the credits.

The negatives- Megan Fox is on screen way too much and she is awful like make me cringe kind of awful. She seems to think that moving her lips a lot counts as acting-it doesn’t. I knew they changed the turtles origin story and that’s okay, but tying April into it via her dad doesn’t work for me. The Turtles started out okay, but they never really develop their personalities that much. Raphael and Leonardo in particular are left as shadows of the characters we have come to know. The plot and the villains felt poorly planned out. The action was okay, but not enough to make up for the other many shortcomings.

The positives-I thought I’d hate the look of the turtles going into the film, but overall I was okay with it.

As much as I was hoping to find something about this one to like it just had far too many problems. I usually love the turtles in the comics, the cartoons and the previous films. The writers of this one didn’t respect the turtles enough to develop their characters, make them the stars or give them a good story to work around. When you take characters who have been around for awhile you at least to try and understand what it is about those characters that fans have liked for decades and that sure didn’t happen for this film.

Dawn of the planet of the apes

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2014

First of all who is this Dawn and what is she doing hanging around with these monkeys? Oh hold on it’s not a person but rather it’s refer to the start of something. Oh that makes a little more sense. Caesar the chimp who could speak left the city in the last film with followers and set up a community out in the woods a little ways from San Francisco. Meanwhile a virus broke out amongst the humans and wiped out a bunch of them. Thank goodness there were too many of those people hanging out eating fast food and watching their crappy reality shows oh wait I’m a people er..person. Back to the monkey movie. The rotten old humans want electricity to do important things like play video games and light up Christmas displays so they need to get this dam up and running. Unfortunately to get to it they have to follow the yellow brick road go through monkey land. They get permission from Caesar the leader, but other monkeys aren’t trusting of the humans. The likable humans Malcolm, Ellie and some of the others start to get along with the monkeys, but one jackass brought a gun when he was told not to so Caesar tells them to hurry their rear ends up and get the heck out. Koba hates the humans and when he learns they have guns he starts trouble. Which involves killings a couple of dopey humans, shooting Caesar and starting a war on the people in San Francisco-how about that for a bad apple or monkey? The enraged ape army starts beating the humans. Back in the woods Caesar didn’t die and Malcolm and the others find and mend him. Back in the city Koba is acting like a real not so nice kind of critter-forcing humans to obey, growling, killing apes that don’t agree with him and I’ll bet he smells real bad too. Caesar gets his followers back and confronts Koba so they fight. Meanwhile ape doubter Dreyfus (Gary Oldman) blows up this tower thinking it will hurt the apes and save the humans. Instead it kind of hurts everyone. The apes fight goes on -whack, smack ooahooahooh-and Caesar gets the upper hand. Koba needs help to not fall, but Caesar realizes Koba is just no darn good and let’s him die. Caesar tells Malcolm he’s a good egg or something, but Malcolm warns him that soldiers from the north are on their way and Caesar should leave so as to set up for another sequel. Roll those credits and hide your bananas.

The negatives-

Old fans will say-They used CGI instead of rubber masks, I’m outraged.

Young fans will say-Wait, they made Planet of the apes movies before Tim Burton’s crapfest?

Really old fans will say-It’s nap time, ain’t got no time picture shows!

Really young fans will say-Googoogaagaa

Nitpickers will say-Why isn’t everything absolutely correct by what we know because after all this a science fiction movie?

Oh guess those aren’t negatives, but it did fill up some space.

The positives-As a fan of the original series of films I say to the people that made this film I say “thank you”. You did the franchise justice, added a great new chapter and even topped the previous film which was solid. I read lots of gripes about science holes and such, but I say get over yourself this was a great movie.

Space station 76

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2014

This is version of the future from a 1970’s view. A new second in command Jessica (Liv Tyler) goes to her new assignment out on an isolated space station. She isn’t well received by Captain Glenn (Patrick Wilson). She does make friends with technician Ted (Matt Bomer) who is married to food computer preparation person Misty (Marisa Coughlin) plus they have a seven year old daughter Sunshine (Kylie Rogers). There are also supporting characters Steve (Jerry O’Connell), his wife Donna (Kali Rocha) and their baby. Wait why I am just talking about characters instead of the plot and action? Oh because there isn’t much action or plot. It’s all about the sad, horrible lives of the above people. Jessica can’t have kids and while she connects with Ted and Sunshine she is disliked by Misty and the Captain. Captain Glenn is guy but struggles with this and effected his relationship with his former second in command. Ted and Misty are no longer close and just stay together for their daughter. Misty uses valium and booze to make it through the day while Ted smokes pot and jerks off while imagining a topless star woman. Sunshine is lonely and when she starts to get along with Jessica her mom Misty starts being more and more cruel to Sunshine. Wow it’s like a crap soap opera only in space. Oh and so you know all of the lame drama – Donna is a busy body and she’s materialistic while her husband Steve fools around behind her back. So these people just go around being sad and mostly unlikable with an occasional funny part thrown in. Eventually Donna and Steve are being transferred to a place they want to go to. This steams Ted and Misty who would rather they get go. The captain contemplates suicide and struggles with his sexuality but mostly he just smokes and is mean to everyone else. A robot psychiatrist spouts off cliches based on a single word uttered by the patient. Somewhere in between the build up of these shallow characterizations an asteroid goes off course and heads towards the station. There is a Christmas party that leads to everyone yelling at each other. The the stray asteroid scrapes the station but destroys the vehicle that Steve and Donna were going to use to depart. So this causes everyone to be grateful to be alive and they act a little nicer. Roll the credits.

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The positives-The sets, costumes and the station and ships all look pretty good. They are a cross of being inspired by 2001 (look for an all too brief cameo by Keir Dullea as Jessica’s dad), Space:1999, Silent Running,Buck Rogers and other shows and films of the time. The soundtrack is quite good as well. Some other little touches of the 70’s are tossed in like Donna using a view master to look at the latest fashion designs, Jessica does target practice on a 70’s Asteroids inspired video game and Ted and Steve are deeply entertained playing air hockey in the lounge.

The negatives-This film had a mostly good cast but wastes them as unlikable characters. The director says he intended this as a black comedy. Yet it comes across as depressing without any speck of humor unless you just like seeing others suffer and if you do then shame on you. While I like the 70’s inspired sets and costumes it doesn’t add much to the film since they decided to be a black comedy instead of a pure spoof. The film is slow and often tedious due to the depressing characters. I was only able to watch it to the end due to the sets and costumes and the faint hope that the film would get better which it didn’t.

I had high hopes for this film when I first heard about it, but other than the visuals there isn’t much to recommend about it.
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Ten thoughts on the Godzilla movie

 

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My wife had her wisdom teeth removed yesterday so she wasn’t up for the movies today. So I took the kids to see Godzilla and gave my wife chance to rest at home and enjoy the quiet for a few hours. Plus of course we got to take in Godzilla. For trailers there was a cool teaser for the new Planet of the apes films which looked killer, a trailer for the new TMNT film and they don’t look so great but hopefully it will capture the spirit of the characters and there was a trailer for some crap looking film with Tom Cruise that looked like Starship Troopers crossed with Groundhog Day. Anyways then Godzilla started and here are ten thoughts I had on the film in no real order.

1-The acting was adequate and although none of the characters were great they mostly got better as the film went along.

2-I liked that they showed several different locations where events were happening. Monsters really should roam all over.

3-They took their time in bringing Godzilla in and that helped it to be all the more welcome when he did show up.

4-Although the opening scene was sad it drew me to the characters more.

5-The action  was about as steady as I could have asked for.

6-The scenes with Godzilla in the water looked just as good as when he was on land.

7-Going along with numbers 3 and 8 I loved where the kid is seeing Big G and the male monster battling on TV and trying to tell his mom there were dinosaurs fighting on TV.

8-I liked that they waited awhile to focus in on a monster fight. It build up the action and so often these films seem like they are desperate to get the attention off the actors and onto the fight. Here they took the time to build the story before focusing on the monster fights.

9-The mean monsters were very cool in both how they looked and how vicious they were.

10-The ending sets up for a possible sequel.

If you didn’t like Godzilla before you probably won’t have your mind changed by this film. That’s fine by me because a Godzilla film should be about the spirit of the series and not trying to be all things for all people. I think the film did a solid job in appealing to fans of the series while modernizing the tale as well. I was very satisfied with the movie and can’t wait  for it’s DVD release so I can soak it in even more.

Space Station 76-Can’t wait

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Space Station 76 is a new indie film starring Patrick Wilson, Liv Tyler and Matt Bomer. It has apparently been shown in a few limited places including having been shown at SWSX a few weeks ago. Apparently it’s at least part spoof focusing on 1970’s space shows and movies which is why it would appeal to me. From the few pictures I’ve seen it definitely borrows some sets and costume ideas from Space: 1999 plus there’s lots of mustaches, big hair on the female characters and simplistic robots. For a cameo it’s looks like (according to IMDB) that Keir Dullea from 2001: A space odyssey and Starlost has a small role in the film. I hadn’t heard about this one at all until recently. While I prefer movies and shows right from the 70’s I’d be interested in a spoof if it’s done in at least a semi-loving way. Either way if it ever gets a proper release either in the theater or on DVD I’ll be all over it.

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rob

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2369317/

Ten thoughts about the Lego movie

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We finally got power back after being without after three days. We don’t go to the movies much because we can’t afford it, but the kids had been asking to see this so we went and it was way better than I figured it would be. I’m sure some uptight adults will try to come up with problems with it because they make the mistake of thinking it was made for them. Oh, well is was great fun and here’s a list about it.

1-Batman was cool of course.
2-I liked the Star Wars part.
3-This was way better than the straight to DVD Legos movies I’ve had to watch the last few years.
4-I was so glad when the space guy got to finally build his spaceship.
5-When this comes out on DVD I will be pausing it a lot to see a lot of the background characters I missed the first time around.
6-Look Will Ferrell is in something good.
7-Look Jonah Hill is in something good (although his role is brief and he plays an annoying character).
8-I wished that Wonder Woman and Superman had been in it more.
9-Glad that Indiana Jones was shown even if it was just for a second.
10-Can’t wait for whenever they make a sequel.

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Thinking ahead to the New Year

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I mentioned the other week about features at my that are staying or coming on board. I was thinking more about the writing itself so my goals in my writing here in 2014 are as follows…

-To continue to slaughter the English language.

-To throw in as many odd ball references as possible.

-To be objective and to to look for the good as well as the bad in any and all movies.

-To stick to the topic of the post and to really.. hey look a birdie!

-To force myself to tackle more films that I never seen before ( I have gotten away from this some when I am short on time).

-To try and actually reviews when I say I will (yeah don’t count on that one 100% but I will aim to improve at it).

That’s about it. Also when I first started doing reviews on this blog I included a short list of items I counted in a movie like number of times some one looks at the camera or number of times you can see a wire on a monster. I’m nit sure why I got away from including that likely the above mentioned laziness I enjoy so much but anyways I want to get back into including those counts in my reviews in 2014 which gives me a few more days and a few more reviews to be a slacker for. Feel free to add any suggestions you have for me.