Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Wrapping up FILMuary 2007

Doh! I should have called it the FILMuary FILMtacular! That would have been so much cooler!

As a public service, I decided that perhaps I should try to organize the movies I did this past month. Especially since the archive is all but useless (that happens when you use the same title 28 times).

So, in chronological order, here you go:

1 Hammerhead: Shark Frenzy
2 Thank You For Smoking
3 Raptor Island
4 Arachnid
5 The Amittyville Horror (Remake)
6 District B13
7 The Great Yokai War
8 The Hitcher
9 Time Bandits
10 Frankenfish
11 JSA
12 The Host
13 Children of Men
14 Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
15 Borat
16 The Science of Sleep
17 Hollywoodland
18 Gamera 2: Attack of Legion
19 The Exorcist
20 Casino Royale
21 Open Water
22 Open Water 2: Adrift
23 Rodan
24 Attack the Gas Station
25 The Devil's Backbone
26 Imprint
27 Clerks 2
28 SARS Wars: Bangkok Zombie Crisis

Now that FILMuary is over, you know what I'm going to do? Not watch a movie for a day or two! Play some Jedi Outcast, or maybe that other game I bought that I can't remember the name of but am TOTALLY looking forward to. Oh! And I want to check out the first season of Dexter.

Other than that, I have a few ideas for some similar, if shorter term, events like this. Maybe on more of a "week" scale. Keep an eye out for that. There'll be one a month. At least for March and April. And March's will be sooner than you think. Maybe. It might be EXACTLY when you think. How the fuck do I know how you think.

Aside from that, it's back to business as usual, whatever that means.

7 Dollar Popcorn Presents The 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Extravaganza: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 28: SARS Wars

Coming round the bend for the last time (until next time) it's 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents The 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Extravaganza: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem. I have to admit to a bit of sadness and relief to finally be done with this. Watching 28 movies in 28 days wasn't as easy as I thought it would be. Still, I certainly feel like I accomplished something, and that's always nice.

Alright, let's spin the old DVD roulette wheel one last time and see what comes up. I'm putting all my chips on double zero and hoping for the best...

Dammit! The ball landed on SARS Wars: Bangkok Zombie Crisis. Well, I may not have won any money, but the movie does have "zombie" in the title, so I may not have lost either.

Alright, lets get down to business. It starts with an animated sequence showing a dude with a funny haircut cutting up zombies. Soon, his sidekick or possibly apprentice shows up to help.

We go then to a news conference. Thailand is the only nation in Asia where no one is sick. However, SARS type 4 (the deadliest type) is spreading through Africa. Killing people. A bug flies out of a dude's mouth and travels ACROSS THE WORLD to Thailand, where it bites a dude driving a car.

Then, a different dude, in a different car, his a dude in a bear suit. However, the dude in the bear suit is just a play to kidnap a girl. The girl's father turns to Master Thep for help. After a some tickling, Master Thep agrees to help. Thep was injured in the animated sequence at the beginning though, so he assigns his apprentice, Khun Krabii , to retrieve the man's daughter.

Meanwhile, dude from the first car get sick and pukes all over some people who kill him. But he comes back! And he eats a cat!

The kidnapped girl manages to escape and get to a phone where bshe finds half if a squirming cat and a girl being eaten by out formerly dead dude. The kidnappers also run into our zombie. They try shooting it to no avail. They do manage to shoot him out a window though.

Our kidnapped girl gets attacked by the new zombie in the bathroom, and the people who killed our first dude start to turn. We're now officially on the verge of an all out zombie attack.

Krabii shows up, and after being hit on, manages to get the girl away from the kidnapper's. And at this point, there is no way that my description is doing the movie ANY justice. It's a bit too bizarre for any of the words I know. I mean it's cgi zombie fetuses (or is it fetii?), zombie snakes, a doctor running around in bondage gear, battery operated laser swords, magic whistles, a transexual, noodle eating sex acts and I'd say etcetera, but that wouldn't even begin to describe it.

SARS Wars also contains many obvious allusions to other movies like Star Wars, Resident Evil, Alien, The Matrix, Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon and House of Flying Daggers. Mostly the references are for comedic effect. Not that it needs the help.

This is one of the most bizarre movies I've seen. Period. Just weird. Never confusing though. There was never any thought of "what the fuck is going on?" It was easy to follow through the absurdity. And you know what? It was the perfect movie to close out FILMuary with. 9 dead batteries in your green freeze sword that you need to jump on to recharge because they're made in China out of 10.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 27: Clerks 2

Live on tape delay while I go to Chicago for the day it's 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem.

I've been a fan of Kevin Smith since Mallrats. I love his movies. I even have both of the Evening With Kevin Smith DVDs. Ok, I haven't been able to bring myself to watch Jersey Girl. I just can't do it. Sorry.

I picked up Clerks II a couple months ago in a buy 2 get 1 free type sale.

It starts in black and white. Dante is opening the metal shutters on the quick stop only to find that someone lit some cgi fire and put him out of a job. Randall, oblivious, walks into the store to be shoved out by a firefighter. The Quick Stop is thus destroyed and they get jobs at the local Mooby burger joint. It's Dante's last day. He's found love and is moving to Florida.

Naturally Jay and Silent Bob have followed Dante and Randall to the new place. They're found god. Meeting God didn't do it. Going to rehab did. Rehab.

Smith has found a way to not just put his wife in yet another movie, but show off her boobs as Dante's fiance, Emma. She wears a "Mrs. Hicks" t-shirt. And Smith's best friend Ben Affleck makes a quick cameo.

Elias is one of the other workers. He's a fan of the Transformers. So, Smith has finally managed to expand from plain old comics and Star Wars geekery. Now he's moved on to 80s cartoons and Lord of the Rings.

Rounding out the Mooby crew is Becky. The manager. She...well, kind of fits in. And Dante apparently does her nails. And they have heart to hearts about love and marriage and whatever. They have fucked in the kitchen at least once.

Jason Lee puts in an appearance as the guy who points out that Dante and Randall have gone nowhere in life. Which gets Randall's panties in a bunch.

Sometimes it's comforting to see that things haven't changed. And, nothing is different. Dante is indecisive. He's dating one girl and in love with another. Meanwhile Randall is useless and crude. Constantly trying to keep everyone at his low level. Jay and Bob are drug dealers. And no one has any real plan or aspiration to improve their lot in life.

There are a lot of thematic similarities as well. Dante and Randall blowing off work to do something. In this case it's go karting instead of a funeral. Dante on the roof. Though instead of hockey it's to learn to dance with Becky. (I could watch Rosario Dawson dance for an hour and a half and be okay). Dante blames the world for his problems and Randall points out the Dante needs to take responsibility for himself.

There is a story here. And it's different than Clerks but it's the same too. It's like that. It comes full circle and ends like it all began.

Despite the donkey shows, Jason Mewes going all crying game in the parking lot, ass to mouth conversations and the like, the movie has a certain sweetness to it. Everything falls into place even though nothing really changes. It's not the same as Dogma or Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, but it is definitely enjoyable. 7 and a half flies on a burger and a cup of urinal ice out of ten.

Monday, February 26, 2007

7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 26: Imprint

Cheating for the first time it's 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem. Today, like I said, I'm cheating. After 25 consecutive days of movies, we're going to look at an episode of a television show. The show is Showtime's Masters of Horror. The episode is the Takasi Miike episode that went unaired in the US titled Imprint.

A group of guys is on a boat. They're headed for an island of demons and whores. Christopher is looking for a whore he fell in love with many years ago. He wants to take her back to America and marry hear. The whore's name was Komomo. I say "was" because she apparently killed herself. Instead, Christopher meets a whore called The Woman.

"I feel pretty. Oh so pretty"

It's The Woman who explains to Christopher what happened to his love, Komomo. (By the way, isn't it kind of weird to say you fell in love with someone because they reminded you of your sister?) Her brutal torture over a stolen ring. Incense sticks in her armpits and needles in her gums and under her fingernails. But, it's a lie. But, Chris doesn't want the lie. He wants to know "the truth".

Torture is so sexy!

"Growing up my choices were ballerina, acrobat and whore. I decided to go for all three"

The Woman framed and killed Komomo. Chris still isn't convinced that this is the entire story. So, The Woman tells another version. Her parents were beggers, moving from villiage to villiage. Mom was less of a midwife and more of an...abortionist. Dad was a drunk and a wife beater. Upon her birth, The Woman was tossed in the river, where she survived for two days until mom decided to be a mom. As she grew up, she helped her mom with the baby killin...and the pleasing of dad...

After that it gets weird. She has a sister. And by sister I mean she has a hand and face growing out of her head like a demon. You see, mom and dad were siblings. So, inevitably, they were gonna be fucked up. It was the sister that stole the ring. It was The Woman who killed Komomo.

A tale of two sisters

Miike really has an interest in strange characters. Freaks. You look at his history, Ichi the Killer, The Great Yokai War, Izo. He has this love affair with crazy characters and fucked up situations. Imprint is a story of whores, torture, incest, dead babies, demons, murder and personal hells. And, it's not easy to watch.

It's Miike's take on Memoirs of a Geisha. It's everything you expect from Miike. It's pretty to look at, in it's own sort of way. The characters are certainly unique. The actors themselves have some trouble with the English dialogue. There's really not much else to say about it. If you're a fan of Miike, you'll probably dig this. If not, this won't change your mind. I don't know that I can really give an accurate rating to this. It was well done, but I was really kind of grossed out and put off by it. If I had a cable network, I'm not sure that I would have shown it either. So, I'm going to go dead middle on it and give it 5 stolen rings out of ten.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 25: The Devil's Backbone

Like a bomb dropping out of the sky it's 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem!

Seeing Pan's Labyrinth got me interested in seeing more of Guillermo del Toro's movies. Specifically El Espinazo del Diablo, aka The Devil's Backbone.

Set in a school/orphanage in the Spanish Civil War, the movie starts by asking "
What is a ghost? A tragedy condemned to repeat itself time and again? An instant of pain, perhaps. Something dead which still seems to be alive. An emotion suspended in time. Like a blurred photograph. Like an insect trapped in amber."

Carlos is a new student. He's being dropped of by his "tutor." Carlos' father has just died, but no one has told him yet. This, is essentially irrelevant.

Jaime is one of the boys at the school. He doesn't exactly warm up to Carlos right away. He's a bit of a bully to him actually. Jaime likes to draw.

Santi is the "one who sighs". Santi is a ghost.

Jacinto is a bastard. He is a jerk. He used to be an orphan at the school. Now he's a grounds keeper. He is trying to rob the school.

The bomb is a bomb. It fell one night and did not detonate when it hit the ground. It may or may not be "alive".

When Guillermo del Toro claims that Pan't Labyrinth is a "spiritual sequel to The Devil's Backbone, he's not kidding. There are a lot of similarities. Not the least of which is that they are both fantasies set in the Spanish Civil War. They both begin with a very similar sequence of bringing a kid to what will be their new home. Both Ophelia and Carlos have recently lost their father. Jacinto is as unsympathetic as Vidal.

"And these blast points, too accurate for Sandpeople. Only
Imperial stormtroopers are so precise."

No doubt, del Toro has made some beautiful movies, and this is no exception. The man has quite the imagination and has the ability to put that imagination onto the screen. While not exactly a horror movie, The Devil's Backbone is certainly creepy. 7 and a half slugs in a box that you collected the night your friend died out of 10.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 24: Attack the Gas Station

Only an asshole would put up a sign that reads 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem!

I've had Attack the Gas Station for a couple of years now and haven't gotten around to watching it. Until today!

4 guys attack a gas station, destroy it and rob it. Some time later, they do it again. Same gas station. It seems that only enough time has passed to get the station back up and running.

The movie goes ahead and answers the question on your mind right away. They're doing it because they have nothing better to do.

So, they come back, and when a comes by, one of the guys fills the tank and decides rather than destroying the gas station, he's going to pump gas. And keep the money. These guys really are bored. The guys actually seem kind of into the idea.

Essentially, the situation is that they hold the station hostage, while working it, and hilarity ensues. This is not a movie with an engaging plot, or much of a plot at all. It's 4 guys fighting and stealing. And it's really pretty funny.

7 cans of pepsi stolen bought from a vending machine with change stolen from the vending machine you broke into right next to it out of 10.

Friday, February 23, 2007

7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 23: Rodan

How in the hell is 5.1 surround a special feature? For that matter, how is mono? Unimpressive special features like this can only mean one's 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 23 in which we finally check out the 3rd Ishiro Honda movie that I own; Rodan!

Rodan is, of course, like a pteradon or something. I don't know, some sort of big bird monster. There are actually 2 Rodans. A male and a female. But we're getting ahead of ourselves.

It's starts with nuclear testing, as these things typically do. And an ominous warning about consequences or something.

We shift to a mining village. Things are tense in the mine and no one is sure why, but when the mine floods everyone is justifiably freaked. There's a dead guy with weird wounds floating in the water. No one knows what happened to him.

"What the hell happened to him?"

Two more oddly killed people later, Shigeru goes to hang with his lady friend where he is accosted by a giant caterpillar. He runs out of the house and comes back with a fucking army.

"You don't know, I could turn into a beautiful butterfly someday"

They realize that the bug is what's been killing folks in the mine and take an army and 2 machine guns to try and kill it. Shigeru manages to kill one with a coal cart, but there's a second caterpillar. And in trying to kill it the mountain collapses. It's a mad search for Shigeru. Unfortunately, it's a useless search because Shigeru is wandering aimlessly in the crater left from the collapse. Luckily some scientist are investigating the collapse themselves and find him.

"This bandage...did something happen to my hair?"

Shigeru has amnesia. Which means he doesn't remember anything. Not what happened. Not his name. Not even the broad is supposed to marry.

Something in his expression just says "I'm fucked"

Soon a UFO appears. When pressed to identify it, the pilot gets killed leaving behind a bloody helmet, but no wreckage. What could have done this?

Rodan: My wings don't need to flap bitches.

Right. Rodan. Big fucking flying dinosaur. Gotcha.

Rodan: Not a giant rubber chicken.

There are actually two Rodans. They're just hatched little babies! The caterpillars were in the cave as food for them. And now, it's time to do that thing that giant monsters do...

"If I see one more store with eggs on sale, I will fuck you bitches up."

Destroy shit. The army decides to try and blow up the mountain where the Rodans live in an attempt to kill them. Right. They're going to attack a volcano. A volcano that has never done anything to hurt anyone. Poor volcano. All because the Rodans decided to set up shop there.

"Maybe we should give them some privacy?"

The Rodans escape the collapsing volcano, but die in the ensuing eruption.

Rodan is a cheesy giant monster movie from the 50's. It is not in any way of the same caliber as Honda's Gojira. That's ok though. They can't all be social critiques. That said, Rodan is 72 minutes of cheesy goodness. The flock moves at a great pace and due to it's short running time, there's always something happening. This is the kind of movie you want to watch at one in the morning when you can't sleep because if you can't sleep, you might as well watch something mindless. I'm giving Rodan 7 caterpillars fattening up on miners so that the giant flying reptiles have a good meal when they finally hatch because you can't terrorize a Japanese mining town on an empty stomach out of 10.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 22: Sequel Edition - Open Water 2: Adrift

In a rare one two punch it's 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Sequel Edition of Open Water 2: Adrift.

Starts off with a crappy home video. Then, 5 years later it's a reunion in Mexico. Reminds me just a bit of how they got together in The Descent. It's a reunion. Five years after college or something, these old friends are getting back together.

So, there are 6 of them. The asshole, the slut, the mom, the dad, the birthday guy and the girl. Oh! And there's a baby! So, slightly more than six.

They go out on the asshole's boat and once out at sea, decide to go swimming. Except the mom, who is afraid of the water, and the asshole who eventually throws the mom in the water. Asshole. This causes a flash back to an "incident" that is presumably the root of her phobia. Once all six of them are in the water they realize that no one put the ladder down. This leaves them not only stranded in the water, but it also leaves the baby alone on the boat.

Didn't these jerks see the first movie? Jumping in without thinking! Fuck that man! You have to think before you jump...unless you're some sort of an asshole.

Soon the slut feels something against her leg. Immediately she thinks shark. And, something really cool happens, there is a little bit of music that is just a little reminiscent of Jaws. Just enough to make you think about it without infringing on someone's copyright. The slut continues to freak out, trying to steal the mom's life vest, praying, assuming she'll die. And you know, it's not to think how nice it will be if she does.

A cell phone rings, and they manage to answer it, but the phone gets wet in the process of getting it off the boat. The next plan involves "nuding up" aka making a rope out of their shorts. Which tears JUST before the birthday dude is able to climb aboard. However, it is at this time that we encounter out first...injury. The dad hit his head underneath the boat. The first assumption in a skull fracture. Obviously.

Then, birthday dude starts trying to use the knife to try and climb up the boat, asshole freaks out and birthday dude gets stabbed in the gut. He's bleeding everywhere and at this point, I REALLY want asshole to die. And then the slut goes missing. When the asshole finds her, she's dead. Drowned. Pretty eventful five minutes.

So that leaves us with asshole, mom, skull fracture, bloody gut and the girl. Oh! and the baby on the boat.

Yes, I'm changing their names. And I'm sure birthday dude isn't thinking about his birthday anymore. He's thinking about his bloody gut. Well, only for a little while. Bloody gut dies pretty quickly after the injury. And then comes the giant fucking pity party. And I want everyone to die that much more.

The girl decides to swim for it because "it's just not her to die treading water." I hope you get eaten by a barracuda! Well, fuck you too. She leaves mom, skull fracture and asshole behind. When skull fracture dies after it begins raining, you want to feel sad. Well, I wanted to feel sad, and the movie wants you to feel sad. Meanwhile, asshole is looking for a knife that they've drifted god knows how far from at the bottom of the ocean! What a joke! But he feels guilty. And feels that he has to do something. Whatever. It's like this half hearted attempt at redemption that really just seems more awkward than anything. All but one of his choices is just completely selfish. Even in his apparent suicide attempt...who else could operate the boat? Asshole!

The thing about this movie that really drove me nuts is that no one made reasonable choices. Everyone turns on each other for no reason. The attack each other for no real reason other than they suck. The characters suck. I wanted to see them all die. Much more horrifically than they really did.

Aside from that, I liked this movie. Sure, I hated the characters, but that's better than being indifferent. The story was kinda sad in the way it was intended to be. The situation that these people find themselves in is pretty horrific. Even in comparison to the first movie. I mean, what's worse, not seeing help for miles, or knowing that salvation is only 12 inches beyond your reach.

Personally, I'm hoping that the inevitable Open Water 3 is the story of the 1945 disaster of the USS Indianapolis. Remember Quint's story about it in Jaws? That would be a sweet movie. And then you could, for a third consecutive movie in the series used the "based on actual events" bullshit.

Open Water 2: Adrift gets 7 Our Fathers while freaking out at sea out of 10.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 21: Open Water

Floating alone in a sea of more interesting blogs it's 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Part 21.

I said something to Stacie (of Final Girl fame) yesterday. Allow me to share:

"I'm going to watch a movie tonight, and dammit, I'm going to like it if it kills me. I'm going to close my blinds and I'm going to focus on the movie and only the movie. Then, I will post a positive review of it tomorrow. (I know what it's going to be, it's $5 at Best Buy right now and I *AM* excited about it!)

I don't know that it will make the world a better place or not though."

I realize that this is...devoid of context. And that's okay. You see, I, like much of the internet, find it easier to be critical than to be complimentary. So, I will say nothing negative about today's movie (I should add that I am writing this intro PRIOR to watching the movie). I'm going to go put on my rose colored glasses and then, set a mood for this one. I'm going to turn all my lights off. I'm going to turn the computer off and I'm going to turn my phone off and ENJOY tonight's movie. Hell, I considered sitting in my bathtub! See, today's movie is Open Water. The 2003 flick about...well, ask me in a couple hours because off I go.

Keeping it positive

I really liked this movie. I mean I REALLY liked it. Picture two people, a man and a woman, on vacation. A tropical vacation. They get along, but you sense that their relationship may not be what everyone would call idyllic. But, they are together and mostly happy. They decide to go scuba diving. And in the course of the dive, they boat operators take a couple of headcounts. However, do to a guy forgetting and then managing to borrow a mask, the counts gets fubared. As a result, our couple gets left at sea.

I can't find my contact!

Drifting and alone, they do what most people would do. They try to figure out what to do, and they freak out a bit. Ultimately, they assume someone will notice that they're missing. I mean come on, they DO still have the company's tanks! So, since it's just a matter of time, they do manage to keep a bit of a sense of humor about them.

Susan: Daniel, did you just pee?
Daniel: Yep.
Susan: You're disgusting.
Daniel: Hey, you said you were a little cold.

However, you can only stay in high spirits for so long. And, eventually, things start going to shit. The hours wear on and they have to fight off hunger, frustration, exhaustion, and so forth. Not to mention the dangers of the sea like jellyfish, and the ultimate predator, sharks.

Eventually, the boat people DO realize that they're gone, but by then it's too late and the hopelessness of the situation is pretty apparent. It's not exactly a happy ending. The credits roll over a scene of a shark being cut open and someone looking in it's stomach. Inside is 1 rolly polly fish head and 1 underwater camera of the type that Daniel and Susan had with them on the dive.

What does Open Water do well? You have, really, 2 characters. And that's it. The director, Chris Kentis, does a great job of creating characters that are both interesting and sympathetic. It's very easy to imagine yourself in their position. Kentis also does a great job of putting you in with the characters with nice, tight close ups as well as showing JUST HOW ALONE THEY REALLY ARE with long shots. At one point, Daniel and Susan are trying to wave and shout to get the attention of a ship that doesn't look horribly far away. Kentis takes the camera about 30 feet away and you can barely see the two swimmers in the water. From 30 feet! And they're trying to flag down a ship that is at least a half mile away, though more likely much further!

Another thing I loved was the scene where they sort of blow up at each other. The argument is so tense and...violent, but not physically violent. The water though, the water is calmer than any other time in the movie. So here's this big horrible falling out while the rest of the "world" is at peace. This again shows how alone they are where even the water isn't with them.

And even though they're wide out in the open with nothing else around, the movie feels small. It has a weird claustrophobic vibe to it that seems to be just the opposite of the reality, but being out there all alone, the world IS small. It's only the two of them!

In the end, I was sad for the characters. I was hoping that they would be rescued despite knowing how unlikely it was. And, as the credits rolled, I was holding onto myself just a bit and had to shake myself off. I think that Open Water works on a LOT of levels and that's why I'm giving it 8 jellyfish stinging you as you drift along to the great shark buffet out of 10.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Taking a break from all your worries sure would help a lot

That's hot!

Maybe we should refer to this as an intermission. Regardless, it is time to pause for a moment from 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem. Just this once.

I LIKE the Resident Evil movies. Both of them. Love them. I have 2 different versions of the first one. Love the movies. So, needless to say, I'm geeked about RE: Extinction. Geeked I say! I'm looking forward to it like a zombie looks forward to fresh meat.

So, I must admit I was PRETTY FUCKING EXCITED when I saw this. Yeah, Yahoo! has the first teaser for the new movie. And, I think it looks pretty rad!

That's all! Come back tomorrow for part 21 of my 28 part series, 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem!

7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 20: Casino Royale

Do you expect me to talk about a 20th movie for 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem? No Mr. Bond, I expect you to die!

Please, it's dreamrot. And I'm going to have to...die another day...because today's movie is James Bond 21, aka Casino Royale.

Casino Royale takes us backwards into the story of James Bond. His first mission.

In the opening teaser, Bond makes his first to kills, which enables him for promotion to Double-O status. From here he is sent to Madagascar to find a bomb maker. After a crazy ass chase through an embassy, Bond captures and kills the bombmaker and then blow up part of the embassy to make his escape. However, this gets him on the news, which in the spy biz is a big no no. M suspends him and he goes to the Bahamas. This puts him on the trail of Le Chiffre, who appeared on last weeks Battle of the Terrorist Banking Stars on ABC.

Ok, I might have made that up.

However, Le Chiffre is a bad bad man. He was going to make some money in the stock market by blowing up a prototype plane, but when Bond stopped that, Le Chiffre lost a shit ton of money for some really really bad men. In an attempt to get the money back, he enters into a high stakes poker game. And in an attempt to get to Le Chiffre, Bond enters too. Bond is bankrolled by the treasury, represented by Vesper Lynd.

At this point we're pretty much all together. Bond goes against Le Chiffre at the poker table, naturally winning only to be captured and tortured by Le Chiffre.

And this isn't even the end of the movie! The movie features a few twists and turns normally absent from your typical Bond movie. And you know what? Thats a good thing! Casino Royale is meant as a new beginning for Bond rather than a prequel. A kick start. The movie even has a neat parkour sequence reminiscent of District B13.

Eva Green as Vesper Lynd is great. The girl is HOT. I mean, DAMN. Mads Mikkelsen is great as the sickly villain Le Chiffre. And Daniel Craig is great as Bond. But...and there is a but...despite making a good Bond, he was the wrong choice I think. See, this is the start of Bond. This is Bond before everything that came after this. This is young impulsive cocky and brash Bond. Craig is almost 40, and he looks it. And it just makes Bond seem old, nearer to the end of his career than his start. A younger actor would have likely made for a better choice. I'm not saying that Bond should have been a kid either, just younger.

8 villains torturing you by hitting your balls with some sort of weight attached to a rope while you joke about how you made him scratch your balls out of 10.

Monday, February 19, 2007

7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 15: Final Girl Film Club: The Exorcist

It's February 19th! And that marks a couple of occasions! 1) It's post number 206 (not as exciting as 200, I know) B) It's day 19 of 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Extravaganza: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem and c] it's time for another entry into The Final Girl Film Club. So, lets kick this off right...

Having eaten my arctic blackberries with Eskimos, and avoided any extracurricular polar bear activities, it's time for 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular Extravaganza: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 15 Final Girl Film Club Edition of The Exorcist. More than that, not just The Exorcist, but the restored version. Aka, The Version You've Never Seen. Which, to be honest would describe ANY version as I have never actually seen The Exorcist. Shocking. I know. I mean, here is a movie largely to be considered a "classic" and I've never seen it. What next? Do I own up to never watching Halloween or Citizen Kane? Do I mention that I have never watch a Friday the 13th movie in it's entirety? Do I talk of never seeing Titanic or Dirty Harry?

Hell, it's all true.

The Exorcist starts in Northern Iraq where an archaeologist finds a demon looking thing in the sand. We then transition to Washington where a movie is being shot. There's also a priest there. And a kid.

Lets be honest here. There's a good chance you've seen this. And even if you haven't seen it, you know what it's about. It's about...someone needs to get me some fucking coffee!

Coffee? No. The movie dammit. Right, so there's this kid, and she gets sick. The doctors think it's something like ADD, only they don't call it ADD, it's "nerves" or some such thing. So, they keep running tests and trying to figure it...dammit,, the doctors can't figure it out. Eventually mom things it's time to turn to the church. Naturally. She's not religious, so religion MUST be the answer. No, coffee is the answer. Goddammit, stop that.

Sorry guys, I can't help myself, it's like something else is taking over my body. And this "something" demands coffee. I don't know what to do! Someone call Father Karras...and a barrista!

The story has a couple of strings to it. You have the priest/archaeologist in Iraq. Father Karras' loss of faith, and the actual possession of Regan. And, it takes some time, but eventually all of these stories converge and the three people actually meet each other in Regan's bedroom. Thus begins the exorcism, the ritual, the ceremony, I need a thesaurus...and coffee...goddamn. I should have just slept instead of trying to stay up all night to make my flight.

Ok. You know the story, the last question is what did I think of it? Well, it was enjoyable. I can see why so many people dig it. Personally, it didn't do a whole hell of a lot for me. It didn't scare me. Maybe if I had seen it ten or fifteen years ago it would have. It's like Jaws. Jaws is a great movie, and it scared the heck out of my friend when he first saw it when he was 12 or 13. I saw Jaws as an adult. I love Jaws, but I don't think it's scary. On the other hand, Jurassic Park, which I saw at 13, has taught me to always fear velociraptors. So, a lot of it has to do with WHEN you see a movie.

The movie itself serves as a great example of how film making has changed in the past thirty years, though. Now, it would be rare to see a movie build this long. I mean, you would have to have Regan possessed and puking by about 20 minutes in. That it takes an hour to bring everyone together without being boring is a testament to the film making.

I liked it. I guess. I mean, I didn't NOT like it, so I must have liked it. I've seen it, I don't think I need to see it again. I'm good. 6 and a half kids spider walking down the stairs with a tray balanced on their knees and coffee on the tray out of 10.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Extravaganza: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 18: Gamera 2: Attack of Legion

The best job in the world has to be as a contractor or construction worker in Tokyo, that place is always being destroyed! Second best? Working on 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Extravaganza: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem. The 18th movie in this shindig is Gamera 2: Attack of Legion. The sequel to Gamera: Guardian of the Universe.

The events of Attack of Legion take place about one year after Guardian of the Universe. This time, our enemy is a giant space crab kind of thing called Legion. He eats glass and shoots blue sparks out of his legs like some sort of Emperor Palpatine wannabe. What a jerk! Dude, find your own thing! You can't just copy people's shit all the time and expect to be taken seriously!

Okay, they say that a picture is worth 1000 words, right? Lets find out for ourselves! Gamera 2: Attack of Legion in 7dp Picture-O-Vision!

Sir! Something landed near here. We're still investigating WHERE exactly it landed...

Thank god someone called AVIS

Shit! Someone help! It's attacking the BEER!!!

Gamera is NOT afraid of fire.

Sir! You appear to have a caterpillar crawling on your lip...permission to shoot it off!

It's my mustache, Private.

It's an amazing mustache, sir!

Crab vs Turtle...doesn't matter who wins or who loses. All that matters is that someone is going to be able to make a LOT of soup.

Gamera has green blood! And he's bleeding!

Section 9 Paragraph C of the Constitution: Roll out the tanks

"Hi, I'm Vic Romano and that's Kenny Blankenship"

He's military intelligence...the glasses give it away.


No Hands. For somereason, Gamera turns into a sea turtle when he flies

Call me Palpatine bitches. You ain't gonna catch this. You ain't no Yoda.

That's one BIG bug zapper

The Legion is steam powered

Okay, see, I had NO idea Gamera could do this...

Good work, Gamera. You've won!

Congratulations sir, Operation Watch Gamera Kick the Giant Space Creature's Ass While We Do Nothing was a complete success!

Gamera 2: Attack of Legion gets 7 and 1/2 scientists tossing their glasses aside when instructed to get rid of all transmitters out of 10.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 17 Babel

Escaping the frozen tundra of Alaska for the snow covered bowels of Detroit it's half way plus two of 7 Dollar Popcorn Presents the 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Spectacular: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day and I still haven't run out of ways to introduce a movie! Though

Today, I turned off VH1's Can't Get a Date and watched Hollywoodland. That was the easier part. Harder was tearing myself away from the commotion out in the hall. Hotel security came to fuck some shit up! Apparently, the room across the hall had people that shouldn't be there or something. From the peep hole, one looked like he was drunker than he should be and the other looked like she was hooking more than she should be. Though, I wonder if Fairbanks actually has hookers...hmm. I mean, standing on a corner in a short skirt would have to suck in -40 temperatures.

Ben Affleck goes from playing Daredevil to playing Superman. But not Superman. George Reeves. And a very charming George Reeves at that. He comes off as VERY likable. Even when he's sleeping with another man's wife.

Meanwhile, Adrian Brody plays a private investigator looking into the death of George Reeves. He is a bit of a shadier character. It's not like he's a thief or a criminal. Not that kind of shady. More of the down on his luck street urchin grown up trying to do the right thing kind of shady.

The movie itself kind of goes back and forth between the past (Reeves) and the present (Simo). The Reeves stuff, while inconclusive, shows how any of the supposed conspiracy theories about his death COULD have happened.

It's an interesting story, and the movie has some great characters. Reeves' mother is great, as is Bob Hoskins as Eddie Mannix. The casting was just spot on. And in the end, the movie is as inconclusive as the reality. It shows the possibilities without trying to present any one as fact.

8 bullets in the chamber of a gun so we can see if they really bounce off your Superman ass out of 10.

NOTE: Sorry, I know it's already Sunday, but I was on an airplane all day. Nothing I could do to get this up any earlier..

Friday, February 16, 2007

7 Dollar Popcorn Presents The 7 Dollar Popcorn FILMuary Extravaganza: 28 Days of Movie Mayhem Day 16: The Science of Sleep

Le réalité et toi, vous ne vous entendez pas, n'est-ce pas? Pas à 7 dollars le maîs éclaté présente l'extravagance de FILMuary de maîs éclaté 7 en provenance de la zone dollar : 28 jours de mutilation de film.

Sorry. I seem to be speaking in tongues...if the translation is bad, it's not my fault. Hmm...mutilation de film. I like that. So, the mutilation today is The Science of Sleep.

Stéphane is from Mexico City. His mom is French and he moved to Paris after the death of his father. He narrates his dreams as though it were a cable access television show, and sometimes seems to dream so vividly that the actions correspond to actual events, like his dreams are bleeding into his life.

He meets a girl, his neighbor,
Stéphanie and lies about being a neighbor. Stéphanie is a composer. She kinda digs Stéphane. Stéphane really falls for Stéphanie. He really makes some intersting choices in his attempts to woo Stéphanie. Some of them are just amazingly...bad.

Largely it's due to this state he lives in of being half dreaming all of the time. It's hard to be sure if he is awake or dreaming at any given time. Through his dreams his insecurities about Stéphanie tend to get the best of him.

And, while, it's an exaggeration, it's a great example of the way doubt can eat away at someone. I mean, here's this guy who is crazy about a girl who is, it seems, pretty crazy about him. Stéphanie's has a great line..."Everything will turn out the way you want, if you stop doubting that I love you. " That sums up the movie and the relationship. Because Stéphane can't get out of his head and stop worrying about every little detail with Stéphanie, it consistently eats away at any hope for a relationship with her.

This makes for 2 Michel Gondry movies in one week. This, of course, means that I have to make some sort of a comparison. While Eternal Sunshine was a pretty awesome story and presentation of someone traveling through their own memories, Science of Sleep is a sometimes sloppy, but still sweet, story of a young man unable to escape from his dreams. The biggest difference is in the story itself. Sunshine was a pretty coherent story. Things happened for a reason, and those reasons were explained. Sleep, however, opts out of really explaining what's going on and just sort of running with this stream of consciousness story of the unconscious. 6 and a half mechanical mares galloping along a cellophane river out of 10.