Tuesday, April 30, 2013

CollegeHumor's Daycare for Horror Babies

Do you have a child? Raising them is tough, right? But what if you're the sort of parent who wants your little one to represent the armies of Satan as evil takes over the world? What if you want your Tyler to become a telekinetic murderer? What if Jordan already knows she just wants to grow up and meet, then kidnap, the man of her dreams?

College Humor isn't a site I'd check out without a good reason. It's no insult, I just have limited time, and the name sounds like it's all "bro humor," with jokes more crass tan funny. Well, more the fool I, as they haven't lived up to my stereotypical expectations! The video they made is pretty damn entertaining.

I would've killed to see the diorama competition between Charlene from Firestarter and that little creep from The Ring.

That is all for the moment, but the Iron Man 3 review will be up soon! I'll try to have it up tonight, as an advanced screening would be perfect for Net-flixation's 500th post!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Great Moments in... Villain Entrances

[UPDATE: I'm going to see Iron Man 3 tonight! I'll tell you all about it after I'm done watching...]

I love everything about A Nightmare on Elm Street. It's a good story, and amazingly scary. Even the alternate take of Freddy's entrance scene is creepy and terrifying:

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Reviewing with Others, Pt. 38: Gut

Yes, after a long break, I am finally back with more Reviewing with Others! I needed to focus on moving into a new place and starting a new job. I also devoted time to this site's 4th year anniversary - when I began posting as Half a Film Student, I was fresh off a difficult relationship and a taxing job. I was all bummed out, and some of my friends had really let me down, and I chose this as a new outlet apart from photography and my other writings.

Speaking of which, Net-flixation broke 100,000 hits today! The milestone's keep on comin', as post #500 is just a few days away!

In any case, from now on, these off-site reviews will be back in the regular weekly rotation, possibly twice a week as I have a big backlog. Seriously, there are 20-odd screeners by my TV.

I just saw Gut, a psychological horror movie about a bored office man whose friend introduces him to some realistic, unnerving snuff film. Tensions rise as these two men find they can't stop thinking about what they've seen. Gut has a lot in common with 9MM, Videodrome, and my favorite Korean film, Tell Me Something. You can read my coverage here at Man, I Love Films.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

CinemaSins Takes on Prometheus

Prometheus is, from everything I've heard, an awful yet well-made film that really, really deserves a lot of mockery.

Oh, god, ever since I read the story synopsis to Prometheus, I've been... stunned by Scott's "a little bit of Alien DNA" comments. Although it is supposed to look beautiful, I have been extremely skeptical of the entire premise from the moment I first heard of it. The various videos by fans and critics have uniformly described a picture in which things happen to characters because

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

How to Celebrate a 4th Year Anniversary

How do you celebrate a day like today? How do you do it justice? Well, if you're me, you get ripped on champagne and watch a great film with your roommate!

I picked Hot Fuzz when she said she hadn't seen it before, and I can assure you that there was not a dry eye in the house - we were laughing too hard for there to be one. The review will be up within a week or so, I'm a little too lazy/busy to start rescheduling next week's posts just now. If you haven't seen it yet yourself, I hope you remedy that soon.

Seriously, I've met two people who didn't like it, and I still can't imagine why anyone wouldn't love HF. We'll get into specifics later, but in the meantime, I wish myself no hangover in the morning, and wish you all a good night...

It's Net-flixation's 4th Anniversary!

Four freaking years. Let me thank all of you readers and commenters right now - with an extra-big thanks to DJ for the posts he's added; the guy's a prince, I tell ya.

494 posts, 56 Questions, 100 Fan-made Gems, 83 News entries, over 200 reviews between the regular entries and the MRQs - even excluding 41 off-site reviews. All of this has transpired since the April 23, 2009 inaugural post. It has been/remains a pleasure and an honor.

So what are we gonna do today? Well, f--k, let's celebrate this. If it's after biz hours EST, I'm already drinking champs, or something with vodka/whiskey. On the right here, we've got a nice Fan-made Gem that I found two weeks ago, through geektyrant: someone called DrFaustusAU makes pretty pictures on DeviantArt, and his great wit gave us Seuss-themed Evil Dead images.

I can already start to imagine all the fun that could be had with this idea. It's one of the reasons I chose to blog about film - there's just an endless supply of news and movies to comment on, as well as so many fine creations by talented and passionate film fans.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Question for the Week of April 22-28: Laughably Bad Title

Has a movie title - and the title alone - ever made you just start laughing?
I haven't written about Sequel-itis much lately, but today's quick entry is just to highlight what happened to me when I heard the words: The Haunting in Connecticut 2: Ghosts of Georgia.

Honestly, it's been ages since George Lucas and Steven Spielberg retroactively renamed the first Indiana Jones movie so that it would have the words "Indiana Jones and" at the start of the title. I was upset that such a stupid little change was made in the name of branding and trademarks - at the very least, such marketing choices inspired a post that I'm still quite proud of. Yes, stupidity like this dates back to (at least) 1999.

And it's even clearer today that the desperate push for cash has Hollywood mining anything they can in order to guarantee that audiences snap up the latest product released into theaters. Again, I've covered this before, and it is not a new problem.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Funny or Die's Steve Jobs Feature-Length Biopic

This week, Funny or Die amazed me while getting ahead of the pack, too. It's hardly the first or the last time that FoD has produced something that blew my socks off. However, I'd have to say Funny or Die's Steve Jobs Biopic is among the most impressive videos they've ever made (a list which is getting pretty long). It's rather aptly titled iSteve.

They got Justin Long (I've seen 4 films of his, now) to lead a cast of about 24 people in a 78-minute documentary about the Apple CEO/billionaire who succumbed to cancer in 2011. You should get ready to laugh pretty hard at this ambitious work. Unfortunately, FoD doesn't allow embedding of the full video, so follow the link above to check it out. However, they will let me show you the trailer:

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Question for the Week of Apr 15-21: Demented Scenes

What's your favorite demented scene from a movie? Don't cheat and include anything from Rocky Horror!
I haven't seen a movie of his since the LotR films, but I'm still a big fan of Peter Jackson - he won me over very early. Actually, he had my interest and respect quickly, as well, with demented stories that were executed in an impossibly inventive and clever way. Bad Taste is pretty much the perfect Troma film, as is Meet the Feebles.

This is part of why I wish I'd seen The Hobbit in the theater. The other reason is that it would've been in keeping with my tradition of this series of movies. I caught each and every one at the earliest midnight showing, or as soon as possible thereafter in the case of The Return of the King (my ex wouldn't even commit to a time because we both had a take-home test on its release day).

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Great Moments in... Film Pranks

It's April, which is a perfect time to indulge these sorts of impulses. As it is, I missed, for the third year in a row, the chance to complete a post that would require me to make by hand, photograph or scan, and then upload. It's the sort of thing I can only release on April Fool's Day or Halloween and have it be appropriate...

I'm making up for it with a prank-based entry that's worth your time. This is from an old b-favorite, which I've already reviewed here - Penn & Teller Get Killed. Actually, another scene made it into a Question entry three weeks ago.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Further Bill Murray Amazingness

Bill Murray dresses as a New York Giant for Letterman. I won't spoil this with more words.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Question for the Week of Apr 8-14: First Film Scare

What was your first movie fright fest? What rattled you, deep down?
Well, I'll give you the second oldest film scare, one that's never stopped impressing me: the last two minutes of Halloween.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

What if Luke Skywalker used... the Internet?

A random link led me to a very entertaining video the other day. It was posted on brobible.com, a site whose name alone would normally get me to ignore it. And, in this case, I'm glad I didn't. MrSimplyApps created a fine video showcasing what Luke Skywalker could (or would) do if his technologically-advanced galaxy had... the internet.

I've had weekly Questions for nearly a full year straight, and I never thought to ask this! Chewie and Han could simply order cheap ship parts off Ebay, right? Maybe follow Lando's Twitter account? Or perhaps Luke learns the Force by pirating an old Jedi training manual?:
Chapter 5 - Advanced Lightsaber Techniques, Section 2 - Saber-throw and Force return: We cannot stress enough that you want to be sure to practice this trick in an empty room...
If brevity is the soul of wit, MrSimplyApps has a whole lot of soul - they did their thing in 1m36s. You'd think you can predict what's coming, but it's quite clever and unexpected, and the creator deserves much attention. And I'm so grateful to be able to post something like this with Net-flixation's 4th birthday coming up; the timing is perfect!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Knights of Badassdom, why aren't you out yet?

I don't know how I never heard about this movie, but I want to promote it now: Knights of Badassdom apparently played at Comic Con back in 2011 but has yet to be released! Somehow, it completely slipped past my radar until I read an interesting post on AICN in the first week of March.

Now, the story is Nordling's and it should be his to tell, so follow that link. What I will relay is that a blog has released lots of inside information, and states that the production company has taken control of the movie and is making lots of changes without the director's permission. I wouldn't support that sort of behavior under most circumstances - and I certainly can't after watching this fantastic trailer.

Just watch it yourself and tell me that this picture doesn't look like great fun.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Huey Lewis Talks American Psycho with Weird Al

I don't think it's exaggerating too badly to claim that Funny or Die deserves a lifetime achievement Oscar for creating this excellent video. I loved the fan who tracked all the restaurants in American Psycho, and I really loved the American Psycho/Pokemon crossover video, but today's entry really takes the top prize.

I learned about this vid mid-day on April 3rd, but I didn't have time to post it right away; I was too busy preparing other posts and some meetings. I wanted to get this up before it would appear on a whole lot of other sites - I'd love to say I was the first to show you this - but I had my priorities. Either way, I can correct my failure now:

I love that the actual film's footage runs in the background while this conversation goes on, and Huey Lewis' delivery is just perfect. Al Yankovic does a great job of lounging about idly, and he actually somehow reminds me of Chloe Sevigny's role. Now more than ever, I am reminded of all those times that I thought Lewis was the evil front desk guy in Die Hard (scroll down to the 4th paragraph). Every time I see that bad guy die at the end of DH, I start humming "Heart of Rock N Roll" just before the bullet hits him.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

The Last Enemy: Hulu brings more BBC stateside

Sometime last year, I found the BBC's The Last Enemy on Hulu (it's freely available on Youtube now, too), in the "Masterpiece Contemporary" section of that site. I was on a big kick of Benedict Cumberbatch, being so impressed by his work in the Beeb's great Sherlock (and, later, his performance in Third Star). I also knew of Max Beesley from the UK's excellent Survivors series. tLE had a fine cast and a nice premise, so watching this mini-series' 5-hour running time seemed like an easy choice to make.

I was somewhat wrong.

Set in "the near future," tLE follows a genius mathematician, Stephen Ezard (Cumberbatch) as he ends a long absence from the UK in order to attend his brother's funeral. Various things he hears there rouse his interest. More importantly, he finally learns that his sibling, Michael, was married. Yasim, the widowed woman, seems surrounded by danger, and the story of his bro's death rings more and more falsely, so Stephen jumps head-long into the mystery of this death in the family. And he does it while slowly falling for his sister-in-law.

The Last Enemy is shot beautifully. Its central mysteries are too reminiscent of The Constant Gardener, but they're still gripping. My lack of love for this miniseries bears no ill-will to the overall storyline, nor its technical crew. And I appreciate that it actually delves into a modern-day concern: the growing ability of governments to monitor society via access to CC-TV and other forms of technology.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

RIP Roger Ebert

I try not to post news and videos I read on The A.V. Club too often, as I use that site a lot and it's cheap to just repost other people work all the time. I get excited when I read something or find a new Gem through other sources before I find them on AVC. Screw all that - less than one day after they reported that Roger Ebert's cancer had returned (in his hip!), prompting the man to change his writing habits, the A.V. Club relayed the Chicago Sun-Times' message that Ebert passed away at 70 years old; the most notable name in film review and criticism has died, after 46 years of publication.

Like many kids from my generation, after weekend cartoons were over, I would run around and play. Other times, I would end up back in front of the TV, and this is where I got my introduction to Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert through their show, At the Movies with Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert. I would listen to their comments on pictures, their excellent, spirited banter. I took store by their "thumbs up" and "thumbs down" ratings. In my teenage years, I would buy a newspaper regularly and, quite often, go straight to the film reviews; Ebert was always my go-to reviewer, as I didn't put much stock in Jami Bernard or Jeffrey Lyons or Gene Shalit.

In college, my film student girlfriend (the one who made me half a film student in the first place) would share one of his books with me, and took great delight in showing me Beyond the Valley of the Dolls, a truly insane sexploitation flick - and then revealing that Ebert co-wrote it. I continued to follow Mr. Ebert's work until around 1998, when I became too busy with my own life to follow paper-bound film reviews. Regardless, I still remember feeling angry that a pleasant film analyst like his partner, Gene Siskel, should die from a shitty, miserable disease like cancer.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Honest Trailers: Indiana Jones 4, Jurassic 3D

The good folks at Clipnation were the first to inform me - way back on January 22nd - about the new Honest Trailers piece about that most hated of all Indy films - Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.

Is the last installment way old now? Yes. Is HT's work funny and accurate? Hell yes.

I recall still my growing sense of disdain as the movie progressed, and I think these guys capped it off nicely. Not quite as well as Red Letter Media's Plinkett review of same...

I hope it made you laugh as hard as it did me!

[UPDATE: Oh, wait, they just covered Jurassic Park for its 3-D release. They nail it in the first few sentences really:

"...the Goldblum" is just perfect.]

Monday, April 1, 2013

Question for the Week of Apr 1-7: The Hellraiser of Dialogue

Were you ever in the theater and found that no matter how awful a movie was, its dialogue could still become worse and worse as it went?
Oh, yes, was I ever...
YODA: Hidden, safe, the children must be kept. OBI-WAN: We must take them somewhere the Sith will not sense their presence. YODA: Split up, they should be. BAIL ORGANA: My wife and I will take the girl. We've always talked of adopting a baby girl.
I walked into the presciently-titled Star Wars RoTS completely uncaring. I was going to not watch it at all, but my generous roommate, Mark, invited me to go. I figured that we didn't hang out enough anyway, and there was always the (slim) chance that it would be not-bad, or simply so horrible as to become fun.