Thursday, October 29, 2009

Knowing me, knowing you. Ha. Ha.

Knowing (2009)

Disclaimer - I’m structuring this review in the style of a Nicolas Cage film. So yeah just a lot of random crap that popped into my head.

First of all: There’s a scene where Nicolas Cage is talking to some woman who’s been thrown in as his love interest, and he’s coming clean about how he’s actually been stalking her for a little while and knows all about her family. He delivers this whole speech in his usual stuttery, I-AM-CRAZY fashion, with his hands fidgeting under the table doing what looks like something rather unsavoury. Now I’m going to press play again to see how she reacts. Ha, he gets even crazier. She looks at him like the psycho he is and runs away. I like to think none of this was in the script and the woman isn’t even an actress.

Questions I asked myself: Why did Nicolas Cage give the dark and scary attic-room to his most-likely-traumatised son? Why did the creepy girl at the beginning have a scar on her face? Do we just assume it’s child abuse? Is that it? Was there a child abuse sub-plot that just got thrown away? These are things we the audience should be KNOWING.

Here’s how it ends: No word of a lie, the alien/angel (don’t get me started) things drop the children off on the new planet/heaven (really) and give them unflattering burlap outfits to wear. This new civilisation isn’t going to be very fashion-forward it would seem. The final shot has them frolicking in a meadow and running towards the tree of knowledge. I was expecting Kate Beckinsale and her gypsy family to appear in the sky, but as I’ve said before I never get what I want.

Also: I walked by the poster for this a few months back and thought it was called K Wing cause the letters were obscured by a hair-piece or something. Anyway when I was watching this I started wondering what style of fake hair Nicolas Cage would have in K Wing.

What would K Wing be about?: Well, Nicolas Cage is a renegade mechanic tasked by the NSA with building a time machine, nicknamed K Wing. His mission is to go back in time and slow down the rotation of the earth by small increments so as to decelerate global warming. To do this he’ll need the help of a reclusive and eco-conscious billionaire played by Julianne Moore, who’s divided different parts of the blueprints of K Wing amongst the leaders of the most politically volatile countries in North Africa. With sexy results.

Weird: I wrote that thing about global warming in K Wing before I even knew it was a major plot point in Knowing. That means this film is actually magic and has given me The Knowing.

The End?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

This dude my Kevin Costner! He going to beat you off!

Crank: High Voltage (2009)

Starring: Jason Statham, Amy Smart, Bai Ling, Clifton Collins Jr, Geri Freakin’ Halliwell

What’s all this then?: It’s the sequel I never needed to that film I saw once that was kind of crazy. Wasn’t that The Transporter 3 or something? No? You’re kidding.

Say what?: Yeah Crank is back. Chinese gangs have stolen his heart and given it to David Carradine. That’s kind of a spoiler, but if that concerns you then this film isn't for you. Though now that I’ve written his name out it makes me wonder if Carradine’s untimely death had something to do with this film ending very abruptly. Again, it really doesn’t matter, but one has to consider these things.

That’s a lot of boobs: It is actually. They’re all over the place. None of them belong to Amy Smart. It seems she draws the line at the hilarious scenes of public sexual humiliation. I’m fine with that, it says more about the status of women in Hollywood that doing the wheelbarrow in front of thousands of people then getting firehosed off of Statham is good for your career whilst showing your nipples would make you look like a whore. Hey, I don’t make the rules. Katherine Heigl does.

Geri Halliwell?: She doesn’t do much, but she doesn’t embarrass herself either. I know, these Crank films really do play with expectations.

Level of crazy: 8. Doesn’t have the novelty factor of the first one, but still off it’s rocker. Bai Ling alone gives it 5 crazy points.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

This season has been very home-sewn bridesmaid Oktoberfest

Project Runway US – Season 6

Featuring: Um… I’m not sure, I can’t really remember anyone.

What’s all this then?: So take everything that was good about Project Runway – the bitching, the interesting characters, heck even an actual good designer or two amongst the crap – then reinvent it with a bustle made of pure bore-ganza. So dull it’s almost - wait for it - AVANT-GARDE.

Say What?: Yeah I have to say that I’m a bit baffled. It’s almost like they, and yes I’m looking at you too Heidi Klum, set out with a commitment to choosing not only the least interesting group of people that could be found personality-wise, but also the least memorable in terms of design or talent. Quite a feat really when you think about it. Then, as if to fully urinate from a height on the good will that’s been created with the discovery of designers like Christian Siriano, the eliminations happen completely at random with consistently poor designers getting dragged into the last half of the series over people who seemed like they could at least sew competently. And that’s pretty much all the praise you can heap on these big sacks of blah.

Could learn a thing or two from: Project Runway Australia. Or at least the second season of it where they assemble a great group of characters, many of whom you’ll enjoy both loving and hating, and then throw one ingeniously evil challenge after another at them. Oh and some of them are amazing designers as well. Go figure! In another twist, and I’m pretty sure this would never happen in America, not alone an American reality show, the strongest designers actually support one another through the challenges and encourage eachother to become better at what they do. It leaves you with a finale featuring three designers you’ll not only like but also moves closer to a genuine emotional pay-off than you thought a show like this ever could.

Surely I’d miss Heidi though?: Nah. Not a bit. It’s like she always says – one day you’re in and the next day…

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

When the pawn hits the turnips he thinks like a king. What he knows throws the boomerang when he goes to the fight...

In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale (2007)

Starring: Wow, a lot of people actually. Jason Statham, Ray Liotta, Burt Reynolds, Matthew Lillard (Still alive, who knew?), Claire Forlani, Ron Perlman

What's all this then?: Jason Statham is a turnip farmer called Farmer. He's happy with the turnips. Then these things show up and they're really mean. They look like henchmen from the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. I think they work for Ray Liotta. Anyway, they steal his wife and kill his son and you're supposed to be sad about that but if you're anything like me you'll be glad that gappy-toothed little shit isn't in the film anymore. Also having Statham angry and full of rage makes it 60% more likely that he'll take his shirt off. The heart wants what it wants.

Say what?: This film is over two hours long. It also takes close to two hours to type the full title. So that's about four hours of my life now that I've devoted to it. I lie however, as the DVD stopped working after the first hour and refused to play the rest of it. Everyone in the hostel was fine with that, and I can always watch Crank again.

Things that might have happened in that last hour: It got more exciting. Statham did in fact take off his top. Those Cirque Du Soleil girls who show up throw leaves at the Mighty Morphin things to confuse them thus allowing Statham to tip them lightly with his boomerang. That's what she said!

Best part: Statham, Ron Perlman and the Eurosaver equivalent of Legolas are walking through the woods when one of them declares: We can't go into Sedgwick forest! Of course not, I thought, Kevin Bacon is hiding in there.

Level of crazy: 7. Turnips and boomerangs and Sedgwicks, oh my.

Croc Your Body

Rogue (2007)

Starring: Anna Paquin, Sam Worthington, Michael Vartan, Radha Mitchell

What's all this then?: After the mediocrity of X-Men: The Last Stand, Rogue (Paquin) goes completely insane and uses her powers to transform herself into a giant murderous crocodile. Now she stalks the Northern Territory of Australia looking for sexy native actors (Mitchell and Worthington) and visiting C-list Americans (Vartan from Alias and stuff) to eat. I choose to believe she's keeping her eye out for Brett Ratner.

Say what?: I had my reservations watching this, seeing as it's by the director of Wolf Creek and all, the one and only film I have ever walked out of. But this one is fun, honest. It's nothing you haven't seen a million times before of course but you'll have a good time seeing who Paquin chomps down next. She's way more fun as a giant murderous crocodile than she is in True Blood.

Reality check: I refuse to believe they have people as hot as Sam Worthington in the Northern Territory. And if they do then I probably should have paid a visit instead of wasting a year advancing my career in Melbourne.

Level of crazy: 6. Giant crocodile, what's not to like?

Friday, October 16, 2009

I think we're on to something Scoob!

The Final Destination in MF-ing 3D (2009)

My hopes for The Final Destination 3D:
1) That the dream I had about this very long, boring scene where Debi Mazar walks to a deli in New York in the dead of night and then nothing happens, actually happens. In Dolby Digital 3D!

2) It finishes with a preview for La Destination Définitive, with the action moving to a winery in Provence where moody French teens smoke cigarettes and throw cutting remarks at one another. The end. In Dolby Digital 3D!

What I thought would actually happen: Boring people I don't care about who I just assume are from Gossip Girl or something die in less interesting ways than they did before. In Dolby Digital 3D!

What actually happened: See above. Directly above - not the interesting stuff, don't be silly.

Best part: I saw this in Kuala Lumpur and it turns out Malaysian audiences don't full-on guffaw at horrible dialogue like I do. It reminded me of the time I went to see The Rules of Attraction in Dublin and felt like a murderer cause I was the only person who laughed at all throughout the whole thing. Others were tutt-ing and tsk-ing.

Other best part: Some guy and this other guy rush into a hospital ward to save this mangled guy, only to find him crawling, bandaged and blood-smeared, across the room. Then a gigantic bath falls on him. The next scene sees the guy and the other guy walking jauntily from the hospital happily declaring: I think we're onto something!!

Level of crazy: It's no My Bloody Valentine 3D. 5.