Hurleysgivingpocalyptageddon 2012: The Blood of Heroes

I’ve been looking forward to watching this movie for a long time, and it did not disappoint.

Also starring Delroy Lindo, and a Vincent D’Onofrio so young, he still used his middle name.

I first heard about this movie from my buddy, Clint. Clint’s big into Amtgard (Click the link, it’s like the foam sword game they played in Role Models, but it’s far more involved, and pretty dang cool.). This is relevant, because at big Amtgard events, they actually play, Juggernaut, the game from this movie. They call it Jugging though. Seriously. Here’s the rules. So, as soon as he told me this, I went out and bought the movie. Then, I took it over to a party at a friend’s house. We never did watch it though, and I left it there, and forgot about for close to a year.

However, the coming of the glory of Hurleysgivingpocalyptageddon reminded me of my desire to see this flick. So, I went and got it from Josh and Tony’s house, and finally gave it a watch. The DVD I have has pretty terrible quality audio and video, but, as with the other future sport movie I watched today, it was well worth suffering through. The pacing of the movie was a little weird, and it kind of just meandered through it’s incredibly long second act, but damn was it fun. The matches are brutal, and everything that’s set up is paid off. This was a quality flick, and I kind of can’t wait to make it to an Amtgard event to watch a live game of Jugging.

4 out of 5

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Hurleysgivingpocalytageddon 2012: The Postman

Well, we’ve made it to that point in the evening where I’m pretty sauced, and getting more tired by the minute. So this one’s gonna be short and sweet…

…unlike this movie, which was awesome, but entirely too fucking long.

I remember liking this movie a lot when it came out, and not understanding the hate that seemed to surround it. Honestly, I don’t think I’ve seen it since. So, nearly 15 years removed, I still like it a hell of a lot. However, it is three goddamn hours long. Which is pretty ridiculous. The movie has two first acts. What the hell?

Still and all, it’s a pretty good flick. Also, Kevin Costner is pretty much the man.

4 out of 5

Hurleysgivingpocalyptageddon 2012: Warrior of the Lost World

Remember a couple hours ago when I said that Solarbabies strung together a lot of classic post-apocalyptic sci-fi tropes in a pretty fun way? This movie is pretty much the opposite of that.

In classic 80s VHS fashion, nothing in the movie looks nearly as good as this box art.

I think the main problem this movie has is a lack of discernible plot. This stems from the fact that there’s no connecting tissue between the scenes. No one ever discusses why they’re going to the next place their going, or how they’ll get there, or why they’ve completely changed their costumes. They’re just there, and something ridiculous happens. It’s like someone said, “I’ve got some vaguely interesting action sequences, but that’s about it.” Then, someone else said, “Close enough. Let’s just call it a script and start shooting.”

The movie also suffers from some absolutely terrible sound effects, and some of the most lifelessly dubbed lines I’ve ever heard. The main character has almost no emotion in any of his dialogue, which I’m pretty sure is completely ADRed through the whole movie. This makes a little sense, because the movie was originally made and distributed in Italy, but The Rider (That’s all he’s ever called) is very obviously speaking English. Was the original soundtrack just not available anymore? Why the hell did they re-dub every single one of his lines?

The only redeeming thing in this movie is Donald Pleasence, who makes an appearance as the main bad guy wearing one of his old Blofeld outfits. I was shocked that he never pulled out a cat to start stroking menacingly.

Oh, there’s also a talking motorcycle with the most annoying voice ever.

Terrible, just terrible. Still pretty fun though.

2 out of 5

2012: Zombie Apocalypse – Movie Review

I really dig this cover art.

Once this DVD was in the player, and The Asylum’s logo popped up, I knew I was in for something special. For the uninformed, The Asylum is a purveyor of low budget, direct to DVD movies most widely known for their line of “mockbusters”. A mockbuster is a movie that capitalizes on the popularity of another film through similarities in concept, packaging, and title. Some of The Asylum’s better known mockbusters include: Snakes On A Train, Transmorphers, Paranormal Entity, Sunday School Musical, and Almighty Thor. A lot of people probably frown on their marketing schemes, but I think they’re friggin’ genius.

Upcoming flicks from The Asylum include: Nazis At The Center Of The Earth, Abraham Lincoln Vs. Zombies, and 2-Headed Shark Attack. Yes, I will be reviewing them all.

Esentially, this movie is exactly what you’d expect. It’s a standard, by-the-book plot for a zombie flick. Here’s your bullet points:

– There’s a disease of some sort that turns people into ravenous monsters (zombies, duh)

– Our story focuses on a small group of survivors, they are easily identifiable by their general attitude and/or weapon.

– They’re all headed to some place that is rumored to be a safe haven

– A lot of them die, but some of them make it through

There you go, it’s a zombie movie.

Taryn Manning and Ving Rhames star as Scared Girl and Big Guy With A Sledge Hammer

While this movie didn’t really bring anything new to the table as far as plot goes, it was still pretty damned entertaining. One huge beef I had with it though was the special effects. They were… not good. Every blood splatter in the movie was done with CGI, a common practice these days that just seems highly unnecessary. Practical blood effects would have made a lot of the fight scenes in this movie far, far more tolerable. Another problem with the fight scenes centered around the choreography and cinematography. LOTS of the survivor’s weapon strikes are very, very obvious misses. A little better staging, and probably a couple more rehearsals probably would have helped this movie immensely.

For all it’s faults, Zombie Apocalypse was still everything I expect and want out of a zombie flick. Fun kills, innovative weaponry, a couple pithy one-liners, and an interesting last minute development are all I need.

3 out of 5

Hurleysgivingpocalytageddon: Interzone

Interzone is one of the many Road Warrior inspired Italian movies of the late 80s. I dig this one quite a bit, since they’ve changed up several of the character archetypes, the change of the main villain to a woman (played by the awesome Teagan Clive), and the casting of Bruce Abbott is pretty amazing. Rather than having a crusty, old, disheveled protagonist like Road Warrior, Interzone features a dashing,  young, somewhat vain lead named Swan, who’s more along the lines of Mad Max. Not a huge shift, I know, but still pretty noteable among the post-apocalyptic sci-fi flicks of the era. There’s also the addition of futuristic tech (a force field), and psychic powers  (the priest/monk Panasonic communicates mostly telepathically [Seriously, his name is Panasonic]).

Still, some of the best moments in this film come from it’s completely unapologetic cheesiness. It’s all a little tounge in cheek, but strides the parody line without crossing it. There’s an excellent moment when our protagonist sees his true love up for sale on a slavery auction block. Once he lays eyes on her, he has a super-corny vision of the two of them running toward each other slow-mo through a field of flowers. Intercut with this fantasy are clips of the current events, including one of Swan mouthing the words “What. The. Fuck.” Apparently, he’s as confused by the random fantasy clips as we are.

The best line of the movie, however, goes to one of the main baddies. He has Swan cornered, with a gun to his head and says, “I’m gonna blow your brains out, and then… I’m gonna kill you!”

3 out of 5

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Turkey Day, everybody!

I don’t know how all of you celebrate Thanksgiving (although, I invite you to tell me down in the comments), but I drink all day and watch movies. I mostly watch post-apocalyptic sci-fi, but I start my day off every year with the classic sci-fi-action masterpiece Predator.

Predator?

Now, a little back story. I was at a convention, Wizard World Chicago probably, talking with the awesome Jason Latour, when the subject of holiday movies came up. We talked about Die Hard, and it’s place as the consumate manliest Christmas movie of course, and then he brought up Thanksgiving. Until that time, I’d never really thought of any movie as being a “Thanksgiving” movie. That’s when Latour learned me a little something.

Die Hard : Christmas :: Predator : Thanksgiving

“These are the rules,” he told me, “we don’t make ’em, we just follow ’em.” Since then, I’ve watched Predator every year on Turkey Day, ’cause them’s the rules.

Post-Apocalyptic Sci-Fi?

A few years ago, I picked up a DVD set I’d been look for for some time, “Post Apocalyptic Triple Feature“. It’s an awesome set that features three movies I remember renting from the video store as a kid, that pretty directly led to post-apocalyptic sci-fi being my absolute favorite movie sub genre. That year, Thanksgiving rolled around, I was off of work, and had nothing to do. So, I decided to sit my ass down and marathon through all three flicks.

Every year since, I’ve tried my hardest to make time to marathon through as many post-apocalyptic flicks as possible. I’ve always just called it my Post-Apocalyptic Thanksgiving. This year, however, my good buddy Kevin Mellon came up with Hurleysgivingpocalyptageddon, which I’ve now decided is the only applicable name for my special celebration.

Booze?

It’s a fucking holiday, of course there’s alcohol.

 

There you go folks, a little explanation of the Fall tradition that is Hurleysgivingpocalyptageddon!