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#1 Movie of All-Time
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So I'm going to wait for a bit before my INTO DARKNESS review, because I not only want to soak in the pure magnificence of the film but also decide if I'm going to check it out again. (All signs point to DUH!)
Instead I'm going to talk about something kind of weird that happened before the film even started last night.
Shall I begin? I shall.
So the theater I always go to is right next to my favorite bar I always go to, called the Green Pup. Nice place, bartender knows her stuff and its always a chill environment. So one of the things I do during Summer Movie Season is chill there before heading to the premiere at the movie theater, literally about 40 steps away.
So last night I'm in there, chillin, drinking a pitcher of Angry Orchard. (Don't know why but I like that beer, if you can call it that.) And this drunk guy walks in. From what I remember he was wearing a Red Flannel shirt, which really set him apart from the usual crowd. Didn't pay it, and by extension him, any mind so I just kept drinking.
About 30 minutes after he walked in, He staggers over to me and starts up a convo. He tells me his name is Michael, Michael Scarfoff (or Scorfold) and that he's in there because he's an alcoholic and wanted to get his drink on tonight. Says he was thinking about catching a movie.
I refer him to INTO DARKNESS, midnight showing.
And without hesitation is likes the idea, decides to leave, and comes back with a ticket to the same time and screen I'm going to be in for the flick. Normally I would deem this somewhat odd, but the inebriation lets me know its actually a cool thing.
So we chat. While pounding a few shots. He bought them. Which was nice of him. I response in kind that I'm poor but my appreciation is with him forever.
We discuss movies, music (He informs me he's managing a band.) singing, women, friends, and of course alcoholism. He tells me he loves to drink because its the only thing he knows, and I tell him I love to drink because it feels great to numb myself to the fucked up world we all live in.
We share a laugh. He high-fives me. A lot. And fist-bumps me. A lot. Didn't think anyone High-fived anymore.
ANYWAY, it gets about that time and we head to the theater together. We go in, get our tickets ripped off and proceed to the concession stand. I tell him I'll go to the auditorium and get some seats while he gets some popcorn.
I head to auditorium 1, sit down, and wait for him.
about...20 minutes pass. So I get up and head back to the concession stand.
He's not there.
I check the restroom. He's not there. back in auditorium 1. Nothing.
I ask the worker of the theater who sweeping up popcorn some zidiot spilled what other auditoriums are playing a midnight showing of INTO DARKNESS.
He informs me auditoriums 8, 10, 11, and 15.
I check all of them.
Nothing. I don't see Michael anywhere.
I head back to the concession stand and ask the associate if she saw where the guy in the red flannel shirt went. She says, verbatim...
"I don't know. He asked me for a large popcorn and when I turned around to get it, I turned back and he was gone."
So I walk around and ask random movie-goers if anyone saw a guy in a red flannel shirt walk by, or around or anything.
No one seen him. (Some people even thought I was weird for asking them. Which i don't get but whatever.)
So I head back to my original auditorium, and watched the movie. (Loved it btw!)
After the film I walked outside with everyone from all the auditoriums, because all the films ended at the same time...and I still did not see him.
He just completely disappeared.
I don't even know what to make of this, I mean I don't think anything eerie or supernatural was involved but still, just weird...and I can't seem to get my mind off of it. (Besides the film of course.)
So what do you guys think? Did he just wonder off? Was he ever there to begin with or apart of my drunken, lonely imagination?
Let me know schmoes!
Plot: When screenwriter Paolo meets beautiful Djuna, despite resistance, the attraction is instantaneous and the two fall into passion. Unfortunately, Djuna has a deadly secret; she's a vampire...and after Paolo discovers this, he becomes infatuated with her nevertheless. Things go from bad to worse when Djuna's bloodthirsty sister Mimi shows up to cause trouble for the immortalized couple.
Review: Director Xia Cassavetes, sister of filmmaker Nick Cassavetes (The Notebook), takes on her second feature by diving into the supernatural with "Kiss of the Damned," a stylish, sexy fare that tries to do something a bit artsy with its vamp tale, and succeeds on some areas while bewildering in others.
The best way to describe this flick is to just put it in the category of a "delusional" execution. On its surface, "Kiss" is an enormously dark (figurative and literal), tantalizing, and even downright frightening look at the descent of a man who falls for a vampire and being introduced into this abysmal world of blood, sex, and civility. There's a decent slew of sexual scenes and even a gruesome death or two. Not too bad, right?
Problem is upon examining the proceedings further, you start to reveal a truth to yourself; there's actually nothing of merit in this film. I mean, literally nothing. Though, its pretty fascinating how Cassavetes filled a run-time of about an hour and a half with so many various shots depicting the events of the story with such flair and emphasis. It makes you reflect on what would happen if the actual events of the story were a bit intriguing. Instead, you get this...scene after scene that tries to sport some sort of poignancy or eclectic expression but is actually pretentious and downright boring. I mean, there's a scene in which the slutty and wild Mimi seduces a young club-hopper and kills him in an alley -- You would believe that such a scene would be graphic and demoralizing, but given we've seen a scene like this done thousands of times in better films (or shows) it just seems like something a toddler shot instead of an upstart that's apart of a family that's been in the filmmaking business for decades. It all just comes off as contrived and uninspired.
The acting doesn't fare better either. Josephine de La Baume portrays the proper and dangerous Djuna with such lifelessness that you wonder if she's even a vampire, but a person suffering from depression and occasional agoraphobia. I mean, there's been many different interpretations of vamps in cinema for decades so the character wasn't really anything ridiculous or dumb, just never providing any kind of impact.
"Heroes" alum Milo Ventimiglia doesn't do much either as the in-over-his-head Paolo. For the most part, he seems to be pretty okay with....well, everything. He falls for Djuna instantly, is fine with her being a vampire, becomes one himself (Don't know how but it involves a deer) and adjusts to this world immensely fast. I mean...it can be argued that his character wasn't truly living his life as a human, but that's just the Bella Swan excuse, and I dare say, not even Paolo is that level of deep. Even when Michael Rapaport shows up to give this film some much needed juice in the acting department, portraying Paolo's drug-addicted agent, he falls flat on his face, coming off as just a douche-bag with no discernible traits, charm, or emotion that isn't overexerted. Waste of an actor if you ask me.
The only person who puts forth an actual semi-performance is Roxane Mesquida who portrays the ultra-horny and merciless Mimi. Though her showing goes from exotic and dangerous to annoying and self-absorbed pretty quickly, not to mention the resolution of her character is just completely stupid given what was established. (And to make it worse...There's a significant amount of time given towards her character, almost completely disregarding Paolo and Djuna. Which just made her resolution all the more asinine.) So, yeah, there's that.
Not much else can be expressed about "Kiss of the Damned." While it certainly tries to be a bit distinct in execution, inevitably it just becomes a poor excuse for a story. The performances lack any kind of life or substance, the various settings are beautiful but useless, and even the actual violent parts leave a lot to be desired. All in all, it doesn't even come close to what we've seen before, its just a waste of a feature, talent, and overall time. Hopefully the Gemma Arterton/Saoirse Ronan vampire flick "Byzantium" will provide a substantial journey into the underworld once that gets released but as it stands, this Kiss is just doomed to be Damned in film obscurity. Wait, what was I talking about again?
Oh and Here's the Trailer. Makes it look like a better film doesn't it?
Hello all! I just wanted to pop by for a second and type a quick something to all you schmoes out there who are about to celebrate this year ending and a new one beginning.
I'm going to be leaving for DJANGO, Dinner, and Drinks in about a few minutes and I can't help but to think about some of the words expressed to me yesterday when I asked what some of you thought about the year you've had, now that its about to end.
Like some of you who responded, I haven't had the best year, and to not get too into it, its been a hard year to get past, but I miraculously did (as well as my father, whose still recovering.), and while I surmise that this year has changed me for the better and worse, I'm glad I made it through. It was something I didn't think would happen, but it did, proving to me that even though i'm getting older, i'm still fairly strong, which is always reassuring. I wont lie...I'm pretty excited yet concerned and worried about what the new year will bring to my life.
I know some of you feel the same way. So I want to lay out a bold statement for you guys to chew on, that you may know already, but i'm going to send out there in the world wide nevertheless.
Its our passions that will keep us going.
I can't help but reflect on where I would be right now if I didn't have MFC, films, shows, books, writing, and everything in-between to keep me from reaching that edge of sanity. (And of course, My best friend whose sometimes added to my woes, but I still couldn't imagine not being in my life.) To me, its what kept me sane, when everything else wasn't going to allow me the courtesy. And I have to admit that some of you with your drives, opinions, creativity and excitement towards entertainment has made me hold on to my own. And I thank you all for that.
I wanted to say to fellow schmoes Horror, Yoshio, Terminal, HTX, Bodyguard and the lovely Laksmikanti , (And those who didn't have the best 2012) that 2013 will be better for all of you. As cliche' as it sounds, its true nonetheless. You are all great people who deserve great things and the universe has a way of rewarding good people, even if it sometimes takes forever to happen. So keep going everyone, and it will come for all of you....and hopefully myself as well.
To the rest of MFC, simply put, just stay the same fantastic people you are making this place for people like me what its always always been. I don't know what the new year will bring to my life, but I'm glad that one constant in my little existence is this site. And I intend to keep it apart of the daily for as long as humanly possible. OH and movies of course, but that was never a question. Movies are life baby! ;)
Anyway, I'm out of here for the night, So stay safe all and enjoy your last night of 2012.
See you all Next Year!
PLOT - A recently broken up couple, their friends, and other strangers are inexplicably trapped inside a storage unit facility with a monster that has some time to kill.
REVIEW - I have to say that after so many films this year where our leads bring danger, death, and desolation upon themselves due to their ridiculous choices and actions, "Storage 24" actually brings up a story where our unsuspecting characters are actually put into a desperate and horrific situation not of their own accord, but of fucked-up coincidence. So because of this I was able to actually give a damn about what befalls these people, (Even the unlikable ones.) and become invested in the story as it progressed.
One thing I will say is that this is a small movie, with a huge thirst for crimson and scares. It all works though and can be a pretty fun ride to take in if you're in the mood for a run-of-the-mill creature feature with a little bit of ambition and plenty of potential. Our resident creature, thank goodness, doesn't look like a smaller knock off of the "Cloverfield" monster but a credible combination of bug and alien. (Think a Scorpion mixed with "The Fly" meets "Predator" and that's the general layout.) The cast here is pretty unknown to me, with the exception of Noel Clarke, who we will all get a look at in "Star Trek Into Darkness" when that soars into theaters next year. Here, he plays one of our leads, Charlie, with a realistic approach toward a person who not only just had his heart broken by the women he loves, but is thrusted into this life or death situation and ends up being pretty much the best man to have in that kind of situation. Clarke was pretty solid here with his fellow cast members bringing up the support quite nicely, so no complaints. I also have to note that while this is a British fare, the accents weren't so thick that I didn't understand what anyone was saying to kudos there as well.
Its amazing to me that in a horror film that takes place in London with all British actors, no one did anything mind-numbingly stupid, and no characters actually pissed me off. Now that's saying something -- America, take some notes here. Your characters don't have to be dog-shit dumb (or teenagers) to be in a horror scenario and guess what? Its still pretty exciting. Not to mention you don't need everything to be CGI'd up either. But I digress.
At the end of the day, "Storage 24" features decent leads, a disgustingly awesome baddie, and plenty of great horror moments to keep you satisfied. It may not be the most memorable of films, (I could see this developing a cult following.) but it definitely does the trick if you're looking for a good creature feature to sink your teeth into.
Rating - 7/10
So, today is a day of celebration. Today is a day of reflection and wonderment. Today is the day of family coming together to rejoice in the miracle that was, and still is. Today is my Mother's birthday, and we're not only going to be celebrating her beloved B-day, but also that said miracle...
Around this time last year, my father had his major heart attack and was almost taken from us.
Its amazing how that was a year ago, ya know? I mean I never thought in a million years we'd all make it to this point in time. This point in our lives. And while its a time to look at my father's brush with death and his, somewhat re-birth into the world as an incredible feat of God or what have you, there's still so much still going on and below the surface.
I can't lie and say that this last year hasnt changed me significantly. I've learned so much about the abominable spirit of survival from my parents and just how easy it is for me to continue to do the right thing by them. I've basically put my little meaningless existence on hold to help my folks pretty much all year long. I havent really had time for anything else regarding me, except maybe seeing the occasional movie. ;) But I can't deny that this year has been difficult for me in so many ways, beyond being there for my folks, picking up the slack for my selfish aunt, and being there for my best friend.
First thing is, I'm alot angrier than I was last year. Mostly because im still surrounded by so much in my life that I just can't stand, and instead of taking a "whatever" stance toward it all, as to not drive myself crazy, i've been taking a "Why is this still happening, there's so much more important things going on than this bullshit." response. My father's survival with this whole thing definitely skewed my vision on whats important and what isnt. Unfortunately since I'm basically my family's rock, the confidant, the worker, the encourager....i realize now, more than ever that I am damaged. And I cant ignore that any longer. I have to make a change. But is change even possible? Or is it just an illusion we create for ourselves as to not succumb to the realism that our lives aren't controlled by us? Is it truly possible to rise up above all the nonsense and bullshit that keeps me coming back to vices like alcohol? Is it possible to wake up in the morning and not feel like....ugh?
So much is still the same when it should've shifted or changed long ago. My aunt is still the most selfish person on the planet and STILL doesn't contribute so much as an iota of compassion, compromise, or effort even though my folks have let her get away things that would blast your very soul as it has mine. She still lives with us, even though she's getting worst in terms of selfishness, ignorance, laziness, and her capacity to be a hurricane of fuckedupness the likes of which I've never seen. Not to mention my dead beat Uncles choices have somehow still come to our doorstep, forcing us to deal with what HE should be dealing with, but he's too busy not taking care of his 4 kids from 3 different women, getting in trouble with the law because of his immense arrogance and egotism, and his tendency to think he's a fucking gangster when he's in his 40s.
And my step-grandfather. Well...he's still the devil. Not even exaggerating, he's that evil, though everyone, except me, pretends not to hate him with a fire of a thousand suns.
I want these people out of my families lives so much it physically hurts me at times. They're nothing but a cancer on the very foundation of everything decent left in the world. They're a plague. They're an epidemic. Wish I was exaggerating but sadly, I'm not.
But I'm remaining strong for my folks, my best friend, and myself. Yet I've never felt more lost, more vulnerable, more cynical toward my own future. I'm like a man on that island. Talking to himself because there's no one else.
Movies help, MFC helps, and when my best friend and I aren't at each others throats its the best friendship I've ever had in my life. But is it enough? Is anything really enough right now? Did I lose myself and not even notice? Or is this just apart of the journey toward becoming the person I was always meant to be? I want to be optimistic, hell I used to be the most optimistic person ever.....but life has a tendency to hit you so many times that your values morph, your thinking changes, and the person you thought you were becomes someone else entirely. All I know is...I want to continue to be there for my folks and my best friend, but I have to do better for myself...Because if I don't, I have a feeling that I wont be here next year shooting the shit with all of you on the latest blockbuster or talking shop. I believe I may disappear. And all that'll be left is just a shell.
I don't know why I'm writing all this right now. Truth is, I've talked about this a million times to my best friend over the last year...But Im sure all of you can agree that when you feel yourself dwindling....its something you can't pretend isn't happening. You have to deal, you have to strive for better, and you have to be an adult. I'm going to be 30 in about 2 months, so I guess its about time I start trying to work on who it is I truly want to be, and if im going to succumb to all this.
Tell me you understand, or don't. Tell me to grow up and stop being so dramatic. Tell me there's a light at the end of something. Tell me this plague will be lifted from my life. Tell me that there's still hope. I don't know. Whatever's clever, I guess.
Needless to say, Time to go celebrate. A beer is calling me...
Thanks for taking the time.
PLOT: In a post-apocalyptic world ravaged by war and desolation, a group of people traveling together are being hunted down by savage cannibals. Realizing they only have one chance to survive, the group decides to make a last stand in an abandoned decrepit house against their flesh-craving pursuers.
REVIEW: Let's be honest here, WWE Studios is not known for its stellar record when it comes to films.(I believe two of Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's films and Stone Cold's film "The Condemned" are the only successes in their entire filmography. The rest -- Not even close.) But they may have hit a proverbial home-run with "The Day," an intensely bloody surprise if I ever saw one.
The premise for this bad boy is pretty simple; People fighting to survive against other people who eat people. But I believe that this film's execution is done almost flawlessly from its cinematography to its brutal kills. Hell this fare even manages to make I-need-a-new-agent-pronto Shannyn Sossamon relevant, if even for a minute or so. And that's saying something in my eyes.
The actors here are also a surprising bunch. We have Sossamon, who I swear I haven't seen in forever. (Still cute as a button though.) Also former X-man Shawn Ashmore, former Lost castaway and Hobbit Domonic Monaghan, Cory Hardrict from "Battle:Los Angeles," and Ashley Bell from "The Last Exorcism." Not bad considering right? Each one played their parts decently, with no weak links whatsoever. Though I have to say this film really showed Bell's chops among everyone, as I really got a kick out of her silent but deadly showing. So I was grooving on it all.
I will say at a tight 90 minutes, you naturally hit some snags here and there with the events in question. We don't really get much on the hows/whys of this particular apocalypse. On one hand it worked with the mystery of our baddies and the world at large but on the other, some fleshing out wouldn't have hurt the story in my opinion. Not to mention our main bad guy is literally just a one-note pony. Again, added to the mystery but I wanted more.
But those gripes aside, "The Day" is a crimson filled achievement for the little (or big?) wrestling/movie film studio that could. It was fun, exciting, didn't shy away from its graphic content in the slightest and I was thankful for it. (Nothing puts a cramp in my style more than a post-apocalyptic fare that's mild. Nope, its the end of the world, time to get savage ya know?)
I will say that if upcoming features are like this one, at least in brutality, WWE Studios can start contending with the big boys. But only time will tell I suppose.
RATING - 7.5
And...here's the trailer for you people if you want to take a peak.
Hiya Schmoes and Schmoettes!
It has begun again….
Your friendly neighborhood TC23 is back online and back on MFC after a forever and a day hiatus from the web world.
Did ya miss me peoples? Because I surely missed all of you and talking various cinematic shop with all of you.
It was a long summer of lows and lowers but I stuck it out, kept my head held high, kept stepping and I finally have internet again. (Not to the extent I had it last time but still better than nothing at all.) Hallelujah!
First I wanted to give a shout-out to all the schmoes who wished me well in my endeavors and kept me in their thoughts throughout my untimely absence. I want you all to know that it was a definite inspiration for me during my dark days. (I also want to send a special shout-out to Laksimanti for giving me that extra love and consideration too. Laks, you are a fantastic gal, and im happy to know someone like you out here in this world. Never change Girl!) Because of you guys I still kept going to the movies and fueled my passions for cinema increasingly, so that I wouldn’t lose my edge. And having a passion such as this definitely had me feeling groovy when tough times came around.
My father’s recovery has been a huge rollercoaster ride of appointments, uncertainty and resolve. He’s gotten exponentially better within these last 4 months, but he still has good/bad days when it comes to pain, anxiety, and psychological backlash. He’s gone from many different sets of medications to battle these symptoms while trying to become self-sufficient in every day tasks. For a man whose so used to doing it all lone ranger, It can be quite an adjustment receiving help from others. Nevertheless, my father is a fighter and as stubborn as a mule so he hasn’t given up on himself nor has he hung up the towel when it comes to living his life once he gets to 100%, which is more than anyone could’ve asked for. So his process continues.
My mother has been more effected by this whole year than any one of us will ever know as she tries to keep everything together to ensure that we still have a roof over our heads. She’s one of those people whose always trying to do the right thing by those she cares for (Its where I get it from) so she’s been focused on my father and others more than herself, which has resulted in her being rushed to the emergency room on a few occasions as well. She’s now been ordered by many a doctor to take care of herself and not to overexert, but my mother is someone who takes up responsibility like a sponge, and “taking it easy” has never been in the vocabulary. (I’ve been helping her get in touch with her hidden lazy, so that’s helped too.) But she remains ever vigilant in being the strong woman she’s always been, and Thank god she has because if not, we’d all be on the streets right now.
Now when it comes to yours truly, I fear that’s where it gets a little…ya know…
In my last blog I expressed just how much I wanted to escape all this by diving into movies or liquor to ease the hurt of having so much put upon me while also sacrificing my plans for building my own life. Melodramatic I know but Sadly this is still the case. Not to bum or anything in the like but facts are facts -
This wayward schmoe is still lost in the void.
I’ve been extremely focused on being there for my folks during this period of suckage, not to mention helping my good-natured but mentally sadistic and destructively depressed best friend re-discover his self-worth again. Because of this, I have taken a proverbial backseat toward my own self-reflection and discovery. What I have uncovered, is that I am my own worst enemy and my own mystery, one that I’ve never really taken the time to solve or even dive into. Its weird to actually look in the mirror when I wake up in the morning, and almost feel like there’s a stranger looking back at me, wondering just who the hell I am, and why I’m just so chocolate looking. And why I have such a fondness for Skittles Riddles.
Life still goes on however, and slowly but surely things are getting back on-point. I just know that the events of this year have changed me significantly for the rest of my days. Even though I acknowledge I am a good man whose doing the best he can by those he cares for, I’m still a damaged man, who needs to start building himself back up, before there’s nothing left to build. I may still be lost in the void, but I do have flashlight. With a fresh pair of batteries, so we’ll see what I find in the coming months.
I’m going to cease and desist at this time before I mess around and write a novel up in here. J
So again I want to show my love and appreciation for those who kept me in their minds, hearts and silver-screens - and inform you that I got some catching up to do as far as reviews, news, and such but give me some time. I promise I’ll get back into the swing of things with you schmoes and see what you all have been craving and raving about.
Just give me a minute.
Good to be back MFC!
Its your friendly neighborhood underrated TC23, coming at all of you on Movie Fan Central.
For those of you who may or may not have paid attention, I havent been gracing the webwaves as much as I normally would these past couple of weeks. Bummer right? It saddens and perplexes me how much I have missed with you guys in that time period, yet sadly the reasons for my off and on absences are easily explained. I plan on giving you all the cliff-notes version. So prepare yourself….
To start off, let me state for the record that I love MFC. I may not be one of the pioneers of creativity, popularity, and relevance on here, but I do try to be as apart of this community as humanely possible. I wont bore you with some roaring speech about this place but suffice to say, you people definitely make me keep myself on point when it comes to my passion for all things silver-screen.
Lately though, my passions for cinema have undergone a metamorphosis from well-established hobby to pure escapism. What am I trying to escape, well that’s easy my dear Watson…
To say that my loves have provided breathing room for the trials and tribulations of my existence is pretty much the understatement of the year. These days my family and I have fallen upon hardening times and its been a huge adjustment getting used to luxuries and necessities being taken away from us without warning, hesitation, or consideration. I have been as optimistic as I can be during these times, helping my father with his recovery, (For those not in the know, in Dec. My father suffered a horrific heart attack which resulted in him getting major surgery and contending with numerous other procedures taking place just to keep him alive.) as well as being there for my mother as she tries to keep bills from piling up and our home from succumbing to disarray. Seems like these days, every bit of good new we receive about my fathers ongoing recovery, the more gets taken away from us; Cable, phone, Internet, food, and more have been lost, regained, lost again, and so on. Its been one hell of a rollercoaster ride.
And I’m not going to sit here and make it seem like I havent gotten lost amongst these uncertain times. These days I have sunken into a sort of, heightened state of uneasyness and depression that has caused me to develop manic and depressive tendencies. I drink more too. I know such a thing is not meant to help, but in some ways, its refreshing to get caught up in alcohol’s gentle yet inebriated freefall. Seems like the only thing I have any sort of control over is what level of alcohol there is in my system. That and making my way to the Cineplex for another round of escapism. Movies and Alcohol, a fun yet sometimes deadly combo.
The loneliness only adds to the mountainous pile of putrid waste as well. My So-called Best Friend has decided that now is the best time to be scarce and unreachable as he explained that his work in college has made it all but impossible for him to grasp onto anything resembling free time, so he hasn’t been around for weeks. For this, I can’t help but to hate him a little, mostly because if this situation was reversed, God himself wouldn’t keep me from being there for him. But I guess that’s one of the reasons why our friendship has been so one-sided for the past 5 years. (He couldn’t even spare 3 hours to come see Avengers with me, but went with his mother, knowing full well I talked to him for months about us seeing it together. Ugh. Ass.) But I digress…
Right now, as I’m typing this, I possess a small flicker of hope for the fast approaching future. However, like a small fire that has just come to life and fruition, any wrong move can snuff it out completely. And while I’m far from fragile, the vulnerability I share with my family is all the more potent right now. On one hand I cant help but to imagine myself snapping and going over the edge, combined with staying strong, determined, and adaptable.
I realize that there’s a few of you who can definitely relate to this, and those are the ones I’m writing this to right now. Understand that while if possible I would do anything for my family, I am only one man, and helping them through the minefield is the right thing to do, but at the same time, my footing is hitting a few traps. And while I implicitly believe that me putting my life on hold for this is the good road to travel, again, I don’t want to get lost on the way to what is suppose to be MY future destination.
And the bottle has been calling my name repeatedly since all this started. That and dancing my romp smaller.
So, the reason for this little trip down suckatoo lane; I guess it’s a simple as just getting this out of my cranium a little, and maybe a select few of you will throw some pearls of wisdom in my direction. Not too hard though, it might hurt.
So far I already feel good vibes and wavelengths from Luscious Laksmikanti and Legendary TimmyD. They both have made me believe there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I just pray its not a train. (Btw, if either of you are reading this. You’re good people, salt of the earth, diamonds sparkling in the darkness, who deserve all the greatness in the world for taking the time out to let me know things will get better.)
If there is one thing I want to leave with you people, if I disappear again, it would be this: Appreciate everything in your life that puts a smile on your face, whether it be people, things, or movies, because in all honesty, one day it could be gone. If my situation does happen to get on the sunnyside, I supremely believe that I will do my best to keep it all balanced, handled, and mine for as long as possible. Until then, there’s a lesson in the suffering. Maybe I’ll learn more, or walk right into the light…..or the train. Time will tell I guess.
Thanks for taking the time.
In order to get the phenomenon known as Cabin in the Woods off my mind, I decided to venture forth and find me a "gem" in the indie circuit or anything of the like, What I got was "Transit."
For those of you who may not know, After Dark films is best known for putting together their "Horrorfest" series; a group of horror films that is released for about a week in theaters, then makes it way to home. Its a decent series of films, some downright awful to a few being refreshingly different from your average mundane horror yarn. (I'm of course speaking specifically towards "The Abandoned," "Kill Theory," and still my favorite kick-ass horrorride, "Frontier(s).")
Now after a few years taking its proverbial stabs at horror, After Dark films is broadening its gruesome horizons and making its way to Action, and one of its first stops is "Transit," a definite welcome for us into the A.D. world of thrills, spills, and chills.
The plot is pretty standard; A group of thieves who just robbed an armored truck, try to stash their booty amongst an unsuspecting families luggage in order to slip passed the police enforced roadblocks without suspicion. Of course the family discovers the money and the criminals try to retrieve their cash by threatening the family using any means they can, and the chase begins.
The film stars Jim Caviezel (Person of interest), James Frain (True Blood), Elizabeth Rohm (Law and Order), Doira Baird (Texas Chainsaw Massacre The Beginning), Harold Perrineau (LOST), and Ryan Donowho. (The OC)
As a thriller this film is pretty tight, with an 80 minutes screen time, and using every minute pretty effectively. No scene felt out of place, or not in keeping with the turn of events that transpired.
The action sequences play out fairly well, with nothing seeming too over the top or ridiculous, but still engagingly exciting nevertheless. You'll have to suspend some disbelief here and there but nothing too strenuous on your part, its just apart of the action/thriller game.
I have to note the authenticity of the setting here, with the film taking place in the southern bayou and definitely showing it with the swamps, hugely heated humidity, and overall dirty and gritty nature of the surroundings. It really added to the violence and the pics tension filled scenes in a big way, so kudos there.
Performance wise this showcases everyone doing their parts adequately. I didn't have any problems with anyone and I thought Caviezel and Frain's showings were definitely in keeping with what we've seen from them before: subtle and quiet to convincing and intense. Not to mention Caviezel has always been a kind of everyman badass and he definitely keeps that trend going here. (Much like in Outlander, Highwaymen, Unknown, and even on Person of Interest right now.)
All in All I had a blast with "Transit." It engaged me with its premise and delivered exactly what it promised which was a nice no-holds barred escapist thriller to sink my teeth into. If all the other After Dark action films are like this one, then I can definitely see these series of films having a little bit more success and recognition for their efforts. Only time will tell.
My rating - 7.5/10
Hello Schmoes and Schmomettes! I have returned for another (and probably last) installment of the Top of 2011 lists, only in blogger form. Last year saw a huge collection of great films, I had plenty of other films to watch but I just decided to hit this up now before April hit so as of now, These are the Best, I felt, 2011 had to offer among the films I saw. Enjoy!
Puncture, Drive, Straw Dogs, Conan The Barbarian, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Drive Angry, Tucker and Dale vs Evil, Faster, 50/50, Scream 4, Take me home tonight, Super 8, Fright Night, Final Destination 5, In Time and BATTLE: Los Angeles.
I couldn't in good conscience make a "Best of 2011" list without at least acknowledging the pure comedic genius and brilliance that is Rifftraxs. Mike Nelson, Kevin Murphy, and Bill Corbett continue to poke fun at all the films that deserve it and I couldn't have been happier. This year saw the guys take on Harry Potter, Birdemic, Star Trek, X-men 3, Transformers 3 and Inception just to name a few, and each were beyond hilarious. What more can I say, like Mystery Science Theater 3000 before it, Riftraxs continues to bring out the belly laughs and cement themselves as one of the best of entertainment venues out there today.
AND NOW, ON TO THE MAIN EVENT!
15. Fast Five.
The fifth installment of the Fast and the Furious franchise not only was surprisingly good, but started the 2011 summer season off with a much deserved and epic bang. The kinetic action sequences, return of past characters from other installments, and the addition of The Rock as tough-as-nails law enforcement agent Lucas Hobbs, made for a wildly fun and ultra-satisfying film. If the rest of this franchise possesses this film's energy, thrills, and ferocity, then the Fast and the Furious series will emerge out of the "Guilty Pleasure" moniker and into more notable mentions amongst fans and movie-goers. So when in doubt--VROOM!
14. Real Steel.
Bad-Ass Hugh Jackman leads another unexpectedly engrossing film about one man's quest for greatness in the ring while being the father to his estranged son, and the giant boxing robot that made it all possible by being a true underdog with main event potential. Designated the "Rock em, Sock em Robots" movie, the steel not only brought the dazzling special effects and credible performances but actually made its audience give a damn about inanimate objects slugging it out. Transformers may have the insane, non-coherent action sequences down, but "Real Steel" brings the idea down to reality, (sort of) and that was pretty freakin' awesome. Thanks Dreamworks!
Hit-Girl from "Kick-Ass" got some heavy competition in the "Pre-teens who kick ass" department when Hanna came to town last year, and while the two characters have similar upbringings, their motivations were slightly contrary, (Hanna being an innocent fish-out-of-water yet what matters is the mission dynamic while Girl is more a vengeful vigilante with a thirst for action demeanor.) as well as the style of each movie they were portrayed in. "Hanna" featured great action, performances, (notably Saiorse Ronan and a deliciously evil Cate Blanchett as Marrisa Weigler) and a soundtrack to die for, courtesy of The Chemical Brothers all combined to give us a unique experience. One that's sure to stick with us long after the credits. Now, where's my Hanna vs Hit Girl movie already?
The creator of the "Saw" franchise, James Wan, took a stab at the haunted house genre and actually made it genuinely terrifying again. Such a feat begs to be recognized, and this film is proof that in the right hands, new life can be breathed into a tired premise. With creepy as hell atmosphere, frightening surprises, and a few new twists here and there where you didnt expect them, "Insidious" was the spooky little horror film that could. One that doesn't rely on the gore and violence to stimulate its audiences, but on a true dread factor and the balls to back its build-up, creating not only one of the best films of last year, but a classic among the ranks of "Poltergeist" and "The Shining." FYI though, I'm still not happy that this film made me a liar for freaking me out, someone whose seen the most fucked up shit and didn't even flinch. Damn You Insidious!!
Who would've thought that a chick flick would be this relevant, poignant, witty, and downright uproarious? While I've never been one to jump on bandwagons, "Bridesmaids" made it all too easy to do so with its charm and unapologetic hilarity. Kristen Wiig (Who I'm a fan of now.) and company gave diverse and truthfully entertaining performances, making each character intriguing to watch, and you can't ask for anything more than that. Its the chick flick we, as men, all wished the others would be, but sadly if that were the case, than this film wouldn't have been such a breath of fresh comedic air.
10. Attack the Block.
First time director Joe Cornish's tale of young hoodlums defending their home from alien creatures was by far the most authentically British film I have ever seen and one of the funnest horror-comedies I've ever dove into. "Block" was immensely original, convincingly acted, edgy, possessed legitimate scares and didn't rely too much on CGI to showcase its extraterrestrial monsters. This film also didn't shy away from the expected violence and was just a plain Ol' good time had by all. Its no wonder its one of the most talked about films on MFC, Critics lists, and the world in general. It just excellent bruvh!!
9. Captain America.
Director Joe Johnston leads multiple comic-book actor Chris Evans, hottie Hayley Atwell, versatile villain actor Hugo Weaving, and legendary Tommy Lee Jones in bringing about the origin of the First Avenger. I surmise what makes this film so effective as the last stop before the Avengers, is that it was able to convey the times of Americana in a non-corny but a realistic way. Even though this was a comic book film, it features the tone and authenticity of one of those classic films of the WWII era, only with, ya know, the cosmic cube, Red Skull, and the Super Soldier Serum turning small and feeble Steve Rogers into the peak of Human Perfection. So ya know, there's that.
8. Friends with Benefits.
Its true what they say; good things come to those who wait, and I certainly waited for this; A romantic-comedic tale that asks a well-known question; can two friends actually have sex regularly without getting caught up in the whole craziness of what it all truly "means" and keep it strictly physical? I've often times compared this film to a somewhat modern version of "When Harry Met Sally," and before I get stoned for my ignorance, I explained that this film really does handle its scenario in an intriguing way without confirming to too many cliches. While "Harry met Sally" is no doubt a true classic, this film doesn't pull its punches and really extends its premise while letting its two lead be what they are supposed to be; three dimensional characters who try to get a handle on things but realizing that there's no such thing as a handle when friendship, sex, and maybe even love is mixed into the equation. Mila Kunis and Justin Timberlake made for damaged yet still charming people who I had no problem rooting for. I'm sure none of you saw it like I did, but hey, that's why its called a "perspective."
7. Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol.
Brad Bird created an instant classic with "The Incredibles," but I honestly didn't think he was the best candidate for the latest installment of the M:I series, because he has such a strong background in animation, that it would transfer over efficiently to live-action. But all that doubt changed once I saw the trailer for this bad boy. (Still one of the best trailers of the Year BTW!) Suffice to say, Bird took J.J. Abrams' momentum all the way to the finish line with this spy action junkies dream. Combined with Megastar Tom Cruise, My lover Paula Patton, LOST-alum Josh Halloway, Cult-Hero Simon Pegg, "I'm taking everyone's franchises because I'm awesome" Jeremy Renner, extraordinary action sequences and stellar special effects, "Ghost Protocol" was more than just an adequate continuation to the saga, but a welcomed invitation to everyone getting back on board with the franchise. Long ago I thanked Abrams for M:I-3 and now I respectfully thank Bird for Protocol..so yeah, bring on part 5!
6. (tie) Thor & X-men: First Class.
This is cheating I know, but I seriously couldn't decide which one of these deserved this spot more. On one hand, I geekishly enjoyed both these films differently; one for Matthew Vaughn bringing the X-men back into the fold in a BIG way, (Special thanks to him. Now I have something to fire back with when assholes say there isn't any other good X-films after those two other craptastrophes. What were they called again? ah, who cares now.) and another for Kenneth Branaugh doing MAJOR justice to the God of Thunder and his origin story. Between them though they both sport Amazingly Uncanny special effects, humanizing stories, dynamic leads, great supporters, and an overall sense of all-out geekish vibrancy. And if that's not the enough, then remember these names; FASSBENDER, McAvoy, Hemsworth, HIDDLESTON, Bacon, Lawrence, Portman, Hopkins, ELBA, Saarsgard, Jackson, and so on. I rest my case.
There's no denying that the rise and fall of Eddie Morra was the biggest surprise of the year on how much I got a kick out it. This film worked so well as a cautionary tale and taut thriller that it has huge replay value and is still enjoyable each time. I'm still trying to figure out why i got considerably more out of this flick than everyone else. I mean, whenever I talk about it everyone always gives me a "It was okay" vibe, but I took it for way more than face value. I took it as a story of the growing times and maybe even a parody or satire as to how we as consumers rely too heavily on manufactured creations just to be able to preform at reasonable capacity. Is it too much of a stretch to see a man become the best part of himself based on a addicting miracle pill when we all have vices far worse that don't help us whatsoever?
I just imagine myself in this situation and Bradley Cooper's career-making performance rains a certain unflinching truth than I never knew existed. What would I do if I had the chance to become the most perfect version of myself? What would YOU do if you had the opportunity? These questions, the performance, the awesome visuals, and satisfying conclusion is what made me the unsung praiser of this outstanding film, and I don't mind that whatsoever.
Two estranged brothers rising through the ranks of MMA and colliding in the proverbial octagon, both with separate drives and motivations but with the skills that could carry them to the pinnacle of greatness. Who would've thought that such a film would be not only highly intense and action-packed, but dramatic and emotional too? Yet "Warrior" blends all these elements together pretty seamlessly to create a powerhouse of a film, one that will exhilarate the hell out of you while tugging at the heart-strings a little bit too. Whether it was Joel Edgerton's leading chops, Tom Hardy's badassery or Nick Nolte's "return" to acting that did it for you, this is definitely one of the most loved and reviewed films of the year, monikers it has earned with bravado, spectacle and impact...Yeah, its that damn good.
3. Source Code.
Visionary director Duncan Jones once again takes sci-fi to its limits with the riveting and poignant story of Cpt. Colter Stevens; an army pilot who must prevent a terrorist bombing by examining the clues of another, while inside the titular device called The Source Code. We all know the premise and the story (And if you haven't seen it, what are you waiting for?) so there's no complaining that the concept is creative, sound, and definitely worth your time and money. But what makes this film such a growing classic among the greats, is the fact that its story, characters, twists, and turns completely floors us. Its a mystery wrapped in a thriller wrapped in an enigma. Its storytelling at its most non-linear yet by the end credits it gives us plenty to mull over, examine, and even philosophize about in terms of what just took place on the screen. Jake Gyllenhaal's performance is sensational, its visuals are top-notch, and its themes of loyalty, bravery, love, sacrifice, and even family will leave you emotionally captivated. This film came out at the beginning of the year and it has stayed with me ever since. Its powerful, amazing, brilliant, and classically modern science fiction at its finest.
2. Kung Fu Panda 2.
Since we just talked about Sci-fi at its finest, now we've come to Animation at its finest. While most were backing "Rango" and "Tintin," my love and admiration stayed with Po and the Furious Five. I'll do something a little bit different here and simply quote my words from my review of this phenomenal visual feast; "From start to finish this film is just chalk FULL of intricate detail, exuberant colors, and seamless animation of CG and even Hand-drawn as well, culminating in a feature that's a work of digitally animated cinema art. Yeah, it's that fucking awesome." And it still is. I gave this film a perfect score and I still stand by my decision with gusto. "Kung Fu Panda 2" is a perfect example of what animation can truly accomplish with amazing imagination, extraordinary creativity, and above all else, Fun Fun Fun for every single person who wants to enjoy a wonderfully delightful treat. Its Awesome! Very very Awesome!
1. I Saw the Devil.
If any of you know anything about me, You know that Revenge films are my favorite films. So was it any doubt that this cinematic masterpiece of vengeance would end up being the best film of the year to me? Everything is here; Horror, Violence, Action, Drama, Intensity, Impact, Emotion, Poignancy, Thrills, Chills, and Engrossment. The two leads in Lee Byhun Hun and Choi Min Sik are beyond flawless in their portrayals and every thing else is on-point in every way humanly possible. I mean, I really can't say anymore. This film IS the Best Film of 2011, and in a way, I knew even before I saw this it would take home this award. It was almost like fate; bloody, vicious, cruel, epic-ly awesome fate. But don't blame me The Devil told me so.
AND THERE YOU HAVE IT, people! My Top films of the year...and if you miss my worst films of the year and Best TV shows of the year, The links are RIGHT HERE.
Beyond that I think next up, I'll do a Top Moments of 2011, but I'll space that one out a bit for your pleasure. I know I know, I'm all late for this stuff but hey, I'm a later bloomer on this these days. Sue Me.
Thanks for Reading.
I don't know what it is about drinking, but it leaves me in an exitential mood something fierce. So much so That I just spend my nights pondering something fierce. Wait, I said that twice...whatever, I say a lot of things twice...guess it bares repeating.
My mind is racing which is what's driving my words at the moment. Nothing else is really in it besides the words...that and hoping the Avengers is just as glorious as I imagine it will be. I feel like that fuckin movie can bring abour world peace. or something.
My life isnt what I want it to be right now. My dads heart attack and recovery, my mothers overwhelmneed with keeping up the house, and me doing anything and everything I can to help. Its like a job, but no money or benfits. I dont even have the luxury of telling my boss to screw off if I wanted to. Its just life right now, and life...is not perfect.
I dont ask for much. A good movie. Good foods. good times...good everything, but I dont normallly get it. Instead what I get is stupidity...
oh the stupidity.
I always wonder why people become shadows of what they used to be, but really...its just time plus inaction or time plus routine and idiocy. I hold my hand out for something to grab onto but all I feel is the air that I breathe. I suppose thats something, the air I breathe keeps me alive, or it just keeps me cold and yearning for something more.
I'm 29 now and while I'm not dreading it as much as I thought, Im realizing that I'm not young anymore...like all you gusys...I swear you all have so much energy and creativity that it definitely keeps me busy at times, just trying to keep up and stay relevant. I love movies, and I will always love movies...and in a way, they keep me going...because they allow me to escape or wonder or wish or imagine...Youd be surprised how much people try to stiffle you and tell you that you cant be yourself...you cant be silly...you cant be excited...or you cant just be happy..
What's so wrong with being excited? whats so wrong with being passionate? YWho gives a fuck if its a movie i'm excited about and not another goddamn baby I have to help take care of when its not my responsibility. Movies are fun, taking care of your uncles children because he's a fuckin deadbeat, is not fun.
I dont know. I want to take a vacation, fly through the sky and be somewhere else...this would be the time when having powers would come in handy, because lets face it...powers are fucking awesome. tell me they arent...go ahead tell me.
I dont know what it is i'm holing onto anymore. I seems like I live in a world where im just not allowed to be...or is that just the family i'm apart of? eh..who knows..bottom line, i'm just not happy, even though im trying to be. Optimism and faithfulness are very strong tools, but what happens when those tools are broken, or anything you apply them to just doesnt fix anything. The practicalities of the world stop you from dreaming about what could be the rest of your life as you know it...and you feel fine.
I just want my piece of happiness, piece of salvation, piece of that cookie over there. Cookies are good, except Pecans...whats the point of those things? ugh.
So what exactly am i saying here? I'm saying that my head is barely above water. Im saying that I want more out of my life instad of just my responsibilities...I want being good to pay off...I want the world to stop being so fucking intolerable...I want good nights again...Not ones where I'm typing crap and sending it into the void.
I know its going to take me to get that purpose back while trying to be there for those who matter in my life...but I have so much working against me, and Im so damn tired. So tired.
Damn I really want a cookie now. And another drink.
Oh i'm depressing sometimes...but hey...honesty is the best policy and ive always been honest, even if it made others uncomfortable...cant spend your life hiding from yourself...you gotta deal, swing for the fence, hope for the best...
I just hope my best is enough...and something good...finally comes...