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All reviews - Movies (7)

Spyz review

Posted : 6 years, 7 months ago on 30 November 2011 10:55 (A review of Spyz)

This movie changed my entire perception of life. To call it a masterpiece undersells its beauty entirely. Tears are streaming down my cheeks as I type this...*sniffles* Such unrelenting beauty!

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Ghost review

Posted : 6 years, 9 months ago on 18 October 2011 04:19 (A review of Ghost)

Ghost is one of the first movies I ever saw. Yes, Ghost. The Patrick Swayze film that combines elements of psychological horror, suspense and comedy. And for some reason, I could not stop watching it. I remember watching this at least once a week for a good part of my early childhood and loving it more and more each time. The scary parts didn't traumatize me; in fact, I loved the thrill of them. I admired the story and the way the living and the dead were on the same playing field throughout, providing ample opportunity to showcase both scares and laughs. I liked the good vs. evil dichotomy, the themes of betrayal, love and justice. And I also liked Vincent Schiavelli. That guy, may he rest in peace, is made out of pure frightening, creepy awesomeness as the ghost in the train. Jerry Zucker couldn't have picked a more hilarious and menacing guide for the newly deceased Sam Wheat. In fact, the whole cast is brilliant. Swayze plays such a likable, human protagonist trying to communicate with his living, loving girlfriend Molly (Demi Moore) before she gets involved with Carl (future Dexter director Tony Goldwyn). And Whoopi Goldberg, dear Jesus, she's just hilarious in this as the fraudulent psychic who, through a brilliant use of irony, can communicate with Sam.

There isn't an aspect of this movie I don't completely love, especially considering it had such an impact upon my childhood. It's a definite recommendation to anyone who enjoys comedy, fantasy, horror, suspense, or any combination of the above.

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South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut review

Posted : 6 years, 9 months ago on 18 October 2011 04:07 (A review of South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut)

For the most part, I don't like South Park. I don't like the fact that the show is a self-indulgent, ham-fisted preachfest that sacrifices story and characters for moral and message, and I don't like the implied smugness of the show's creators. But had you asked my opinion 10 years ago, I would have given you the complete opposite reaction. I loved South Park to the point of obsession, and I still do love the show's old episodes. Matt and Trey knew how to invoke their message properly and with tact, while taking the time to develop a unique and hilarious story to guide the message. South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut is the most beautiful, amazing example of this.

Talk about a creative way to get across the message "Censorship is bad": creating a fucking musical! Matt and Trey guide us through the four boys' odyssey to stop their overbearing censorship-obsessed parents from executing Terrance & Philip and save the world from Satan and Saddam Hussein from taking over the world...through song and dance. And let me tell you, the songs in this movie are so damned catchy that they make even the most unforgettable earworm Disney songs sound forgettable in comparison. Out of nowhere, "Mountain Town" or "Kyle's Mom is a Bitch" will just pop into my head and remain there for WEEKS.

SP: BLU is a must-see for...well, anyone who can appreciate hilarious biting satire and disgustingly catchy musical numbers.

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Matilda (1996) review

Posted : 6 years, 9 months ago on 18 October 2011 03:52 (A review of Matilda (1996))

As a child, I watched many family/children's films. Many of said films ranged from great to awful, with many being simply too mediocre to remember in my adulthood. Matilda is one of those movies that actually helped construct my childhood and transform me into who I am as a human being.

I admit to having not read Roald Dahl's novel, though I plan to. While I can't judge this as an adaptation, I can honestly say Matilda is an incredibly well-made film that gives off its own unique cinematic aura thanks to the brilliant, wonderful director Danny DeVito. Like many of his other films, DeVito gives Matilda a fresh coat of surreality, slightly twisted imagery contrasted with the lighthearted, and unique camera angles to translate Dahl's story through a fresh lens. DeVito marries lightness and darkness in a union blessed by the gods.

The film's star, Mara Wilson, delivers such an awesome performance as Matilda, giving us a protagonist who is gifted and special in so many ways, but is born into a family who refuses to recognize and appreciate her gifts. Danny DeVito and Rhea Pearlman portray her parents, who are so exaggeratedly horrible but ironically to the point where they're not completely unlikable. Their personalities are so over the top you can't help but laugh at them. The same can be said about Tracey Walter and Paul Reubens (yes, THE Paul Reubens) as the two FBI agents trailing Matilda's corrupt father, as well as Pam Ferris as The Trunchbull, a villain so ridiculously over the top that immediately warrants laughter. Inversely, we have a bastion of hope, love and sweetness in the appropriately named Miss Honey, played by the inimitable Embeth Davidtz, who delivers all the nurture and attention Matilda so desperately lacks in every other aspect of her life.

I've seen Matilda over 25 times throughout my life, and I want to double that. It's such a beautiful, awe-inspiring masterpiece and if I ever get a chance to meet or work with Danny DeVito, I want to personally thank him for helping create the identity of my childhood.

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Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom review

Posted : 6 years, 9 months ago on 17 October 2011 04:41 (A review of Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom)

I've seen plenty of movies I positively detested, movies so god-awful and atrociously made that it gives me hope as a filmmaker, considering I could do a better job in my fucking sleep. But it is very, very, VERY rare that I find a movie that I actually regretted watching. Even with the worst of the worst movies I've subjected myself to, I never regretted watching them because they gave me insight into how awful movies could be, and honestly sometimes it's fun to complain about them. And then there's Salo.

Now, to be fair, Salo is objectively probably the BEST movie on my least favorites list. It's shot beautifully, the acting is fine, and the writing and direction are both coherent. Having said that, not one single day goes by that I don't regret popping it into my DVD player. This is undoubtedly the single most disturbing film I've ever sat through (so far). Images from this movie continuously burst into my head and I feel like a disgusting pervert for dignifying this film with my attention. For those unaware, the film is nothing but scenes of rape, molestation, feces and torture (and I mean horrifically violent acts). Oh, and a woman telling stories about how she was fed laxatives and shat into men's mouths as a teenager. Throughout the film, fascist hedonists subject teenagers to the most ungodly tortures you could ever comprehend...just because. The message Pasolini was trying to get across, it seems, is that degradation of the human body is wrong, and that if we do it through pornography, what's stopping us from doing this? That is, without a doubt, the flimsiest and most asinine reason for showing such horrifying imagery. If one wanted to make a movie saying pornography is wrong, make one stating that point. Don't show me scenes that will disturb me for years to come.

I am not a prude. I am not one of those people who thinks anything edgy or controversial or violent is wrong or should be banned. Stanley Kubrick's filmography, for instance, is a shining example of controversy with just the right amount of disturbing events and imagery. As disturbing as A Clockwork Orange was, it had PLENTY of other things going for it. Aside from snuff films and anything involving other illegal activity, I don't think any film should be censored or banned. I respect Pasolini's choice to have made this movie. But that doesn't mean I have to give it consistent praise because it was "different".

Yes, I realize I brought this upon myself by watching it, so it is my own fault. That's an error I'll have to live with my entire life, I'm afraid, so I would advise you innocent readers to never see this movie. Trust me, there are plenty of other well-made films out there that deserve your time and attention. This is nothing but shock value bullshit.

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Alice in Wonderland review

Posted : 6 years, 9 months ago on 12 October 2011 05:52 (A review of Alice in Wonderland)

This film is by far the single biggest disappointment from Tim Burton I have ever seen. Words cannot express the sheer excitement I had going into this movie, considering Tim Burton and Alice in Wonderland seemed to be a match made in heaven. This film was a complete disaster, and arguably one of the safest, most bland "fantasy" films I've ever seen. This is partially the fault of writer Linda Woolverton, whose past credits (The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast) led me to believe the screenplay would be in good hands. Either she ate some of Wonderland's mushrooms before writing this or Disney shat upon her script, because the dialogue and the sequences of events were horrendous. The film is odd for its own sake, and even then it doesn't achieve anything interesting because of it. What should have been a nonsensical fun ride in the vein of Burton's early films was instead a stereotypical fantasy war film that played by all the rules and was disgustingly safe. I absolutely hate this film and everything about it.

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Watchmen review

Posted : 7 years, 10 months ago on 1 September 2010 04:22 (A review of Watchmen)

Watchmen is my favorite movie of all time, hands down.

This divisive neo-noir graphic novel adaptation is a film that, like The Dark Knight, destroys the superhero archetype...but in a much, much, MUCH more expansive and amazing way. I mean, good God. I could literally go on for pages about this, but I'll keep it concise. These are some of the most philosophically and psychologically-challenging heroes you will ever find, each one imperfect and each one unique.

You have the misogynistic, murderous Comedian - a man who sees the sick joke in life and chose to be a parody of it...his boiler suit representing his sadistic clown-like nature and his commando suit with black leather, red white and blue, and a yellow smiley face badge giving the last laugh to anyone who dares stand in his way. Then there's the distant, apathetic literal "superman" Dr. Manhattan, whose interest in saving humanity is little at best, a literal god whose sole personal relationship with the woman he loves becomes strained because of his ironic inability to properly understand and communicate. Then you have the boy scout and heart-of-gold nice guy Nite Owl II, following in the foot (or talon) steps of the original Nite Owl from the 50's. NO II's fascinations with birds, magic and aviation made him a great hero, but his literal and figurative impotence and complacency hold him from his potential. Then there's the reluctant, fickle Silk Spectre II who had to follow in her mother's stilettos - er, footsteps and just cannot seem to handle her personal relationships very well. Then there's the altruistic genius Ozymandias, who shrouds himself behind Batman & Robin-esque muscle armor and business suits, we find is still nothing more than just a human who wants to be a god, unlike Manhattan who is the exact opposite. And, of course, my favorite of the group, the badass to end all badasses: the dualistic-minded, violent, sociopathic and righteous avenger of justice Rorschach, a tortured soul and obvious product of the harshness that life can bring to a child.

Zack Snyder brought Alan Moore's classic graphic novel to life, again, putting his own directorial spin on it and making it his own, while still sticking to the source material. It's easier to do so, admittedly, since this was a limited series/book compared to Batman, which is a much larger franchise. There were so many perfect moments he nailed, like the opening credits. Seeing all those beautiful and unique characters I came to know through Moore's book being brought to life over Bob Dylan singing was, in all honesty, a spiritual experience. It helped change my entire perception of cinema. Also, I should point out the few major changes he made helped ease the story along and make the transition from page to film better.

I won't go on too much longer about it; I'll just leave it at this: Watchmen is the greatest adaptation of any book I have ever seen, and is a must-see for anyone.

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