Sunday, November 29, 2009

That's a bit philosophical. For a Thursday.

Last week I watched the new Prisoner miniseries, starring the awesome Sir Ian McKellen as No. 2 and that Jesus guy as No. 6. I did in fact enjoy it, though I'm not really sure what was the point of shooting it as a Prisoner remake. If anything, it's more of a reimagining thing (how I loathe that word) than a full on remake. You still get a secluded village in which everybody is a number, you get a number 2 who's the big boss and a number 6 who doesn't like it there and wants out, but almost everything else is completely different. The original series was about super spies and the Cold War and using imaginative cutting edge scientific methods of breaking people's spirit in order to get information out of them. Here, things are much more ambiguous. Up until the last episode it's never quite clear what the point of the village is or why No. 2 wants No. 6 to stay there. As I watched the miniseries, as No. 2's mind games became weirder and weirder and it became obvious that things are clearly not what they seem to be, I kept wishing for one thing. Please, I begged, Please don't let it be the Matrix. Please don't let it be some kind of computer simulation in which all the Village's inhabitants are trapped. Because that would be the lamest thing ever. Was I pleasantly surprised by the actual conclusion of the miniseries? I suppose I was, sort of. It's not exactly the Matrix, and in a way it's an even cheaper trick, but it's done in an original enough way so that it's easily forgiven. What prevents it from achieving true greatness in my opinion is its complete and utter humourlessness. It's interesting and well written, but way too serious and never quite cool. I guess part of the problem is James Caviezel, who is just plain boring as No. 6, especially when compared to Patrick McGoohan's phenomenal performance. Sir Ian McKellen does a superb job playing the coolest character named after a bowel movement ever, completely overshadowing Mr. Caviezel. Ruth Wilson does an OK job as 313, a nurse who looks more like an evil duck than a human female. I first saw her in Suburban Shootout, where she played some kind of trashy bimbo, a role which seemed to suit her much better than this one. That's not too bad though, because we do get the luscious Hayley Atwell, yet another British actress, playing the mysterious Lucy. She is absolutely gorgeous, and I'd definitely like to see much more of her in the future. Not her boobs though. Not the boobs. Never those boobs. It's so tragic how some otherwise perfectly hot chicks end up with a set of huge droopy breasts. Oh well. She totally gets this week's Gawd I'd Like to Bang Her award anyway.

Hayley Atwel. Watch out for her topless scene in the forthcoming Doctor Who Christmas special: It's Bigger on the Inside, Baby

Aside from the obvious, what both the original series and this miniseries share is the identity of No. 1 as it is revealed in the final episodes. However, while the conclusion of the original series was easily the weakest part of it, the new miniseries ends in a pretty satisfying manner. I wonder how Patrick McGoohan's ghost feels about the whole thing. He's probably pretty pissed. The executives at AMC better be prepared for some serious haunting in the near future. Only the male ones though, because the only woman whose bedroom Patrick McGoohan's ghost visits at night is Mrs. McGoohan.

Los niños zombies son de miedo!

I recently watched REC, a Spanish found footage horror film from 2007, starring Manuela Velasco as Angela Vidal, a spunky TV chick who is shooting some silly nighttime documentary about firemen or something in a sealed off zombie infested building. I had the opportunity to see it last year at the Icon sci-fi and fantasy film festival in Tel-Aviv, but at the time it seemed silly to me to pay 35 shekels to see something that was shot docu-style on a big screen, surrounded by hundreds of noisy little monkey geeks no less. Well, I was wrong. Not about the monkey geeks, I'm sure they would have made the experience as horrible as only Gaiman obsessed emo brats can (never shall I forgive the ones who almost ruined a midnight screening of Jesus Christ Vampire Hunter for me. thank gawd I managed to sneak a couple of beers into the theater). But REC, despite its found footage style and not unlike Paranormal activity, truly deserves to be seen in a darkened theater and on a big screen. OK, I'm not saying it could be even half as scary as PA, but it's just loads and loads of cool, creepy zombie fun. You get a heavy old zombie lady, people thrown down staircases, a creepy old building, people's faces bitten off, Asian zombies, policemen and firemen that are just as lost as everyone else, and of course a little zombie girl. You can't have a decent zombie movie without zombie kids. They're unsettling as your grandpa's dangling privates and they work perfectly every single time. The last few minutes alone, shot in intense, green tinted infra-red, are enough to make it one of the coolest European horror movies in recent years. I am not ashamed to admit that at first I thought that the scary looking patient zero was a CGI creation, before I found out that it was simply played by a tall and very skinny dude in makeup. It's just that much out of this world, saggy monkey tits and all! Manuela Velasco is very cute in the lead role. The whole time I was totally jealous of the camera guy for getting to be ordered around by her all night. I probably wouldn't have had the balls to grab her or something once the lights went out either. Probably. Maybe just a little. You know, the kind of thing you could probably get away with as an 'accident'. There are so many possibilities when you're both in complete darkness and you're the one holding the infra-red camera with the broken light. I can't say I completely understood the movie's conclusion, mainly because it was pretty hurried and all the newspaper clippings were in Spanish, but I don't think it matters too much. It's good enough a movie so even dumb assholes like me can thoroughly enjoy it.

Manuela Velasco is even cuter when she's being dragged by a scary zombie!

Since REC came out a couple of years ago it has managed to spawn an American remake, titled Quarantine and starring the lovely Jennifer Carpenter, as well as a Spanish sequel, titled REC 2 and starring Ms. Velasco again. I guess her character didn't die in the end of the first movie after all. There's also a third REC movie in the making, so I guess she doesn't die in the second one either. I do hope that that would be the last one though, because I'd love to see her get zombified as soon as possible. Hot chicks make the coolest zombies, because unlike most females, they're not too picky about who they get their mouth on, which means much better odds for the likes of me.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Hoots make scary noises at night

Yesterday I went to see Paranormal Activity, the independent found footage horror film directed by Israeli video game designer Oren Peli, and for some reason I found it pretty enjoyable and very scary. It's basically identical to this movie from like ten years ago, only with a bedroom instead of a forest as the primary location. It's all about an asshole with a camera and his oddly attractive girlfriend, who try to deal with this mean old demon that's been haunting the lady of the house since she was eight years old. There's a lot of talk about "doing something" about it, but the specialist they call is a big wuss, and the other specialist he recommends is conveniently out of the country, so all they ever do is document the demon's activities in their bedroom and freak out about it. The dude, Micah, is one of the most unlikable characters I've seen recently. He lies to his girlfriend, he doesn't really care about how terrified she is about the whole thing, and he thinks that ouija boards are for real. The chick, Katie, is a delightfully plump young woman who I guess is so screwed up by her past demonic issues that she doesn't mind sharing her bed with a total jerk. It's a good thing then that it's Micah who's holding the camera most of the time, which means more Katie screen time. She's not exactly the hottest chick in the world, but I wouldn't mind staring at that cute face, voluptuous front end and gigantic thighs any day. Paranormal Activity is a pretty scary movie, especially towards the end, but what really creeped me out yesterday was this one old lady who sat in the seat in front of me, in the second row, and kept sighing to herself in the dark. After the movie ended and I was on my way out of the theater I actually heard her asking the usher "is it a real story?", which I found absolutely hilarious. Why do old people insist on going to movies that are clearly not meant for them? Why would they do that to themselves? And why do they always sit so close to the screen? Is it because they can't see all too well? Haven't they ever heard of glasses? And does sitting this close to the screen even work? I don't get it. Don't they know that the first three rows are reserved to me, and that I hate it when people sit close enough to me so that I cannot comfortably pretend that I'm alone in the theater? That's probably the greatest thing about how poorly movie theaters here are doing lately: I don't have to shush anyone anymore, because there's usually no one around me. People can be so annoying when they're, you know, there.

A douche making a grab for his girlfriend's hoots.

I've read somewhere that is doesn't make sense how Katie sleeps with a bra under her top. I think it's fairly obvious, because everybody knows that big boobs look so much better when they're being supported in some way or another, and Paranormal Activities is in fact a movie, which means that the last thing we need is a couple of huge meaty distractions to ruin all the scary moments for us. That is also why I myself will never star in a horror movie.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Like a zombie movie, only with not as many undead people

A couple of day ago I watched Blindness, based on a novel by Portuguese author José Saramago. It was OK, I guess. The basic plot is that people all over start going blind, probably because of some kind of infection, and the infected are quarantined away from the rest of society, whatever's left of it. Most of the film takes place in some old abandoned hospital or something, where a big bunch of newly blinded people (and one Julianne Moore with a fully functional set of ocular organs) who start off as complete strangers have to stay together and somehow manage to survive, shut away from the outside world. As time progresses and food is getting scarce, everybodys animal, assholy side starts showing. Kinda like in every zombie movie I've ever seen. And just like in Romero's original Dead trilogy, the cause of the blindness phenomenon is never explained, or even discussed. The main problem I had with this movie is that there aren't any zombies in it. A huge mass of rotting undead dudes crowding around the hospital would've made it into a so much more entertaining film. As it is, the big villain here (aside from the usual human assholes) is a physical disability. And it's not even like the subject is really explored, other than showing us what happens when a hundred newly blinded people use the same icky old bathroom. Not that poop isn't funny, it totally is, I just think that there's more to going blind than poor hygiene. Most of the movie is just your usual "people confined to a closed space, people turn to animals" thing, which isn't too bad, it's just not very original. I guess the "bring us your woman" part was sort of cool, but for rather obvious reasons I don't really get the point of having sex when you can't see anything. And oh yeah, thank you, whoever made this film, thank you so much for making me see what 48 year old boobs look like. I really needed to see that. Thanks, really. I wonder at what stage exactly freckles on women turn from cute to icky. I mean, don't get me wrong, Julianne Moore is a very attractive woman, and had she really been fixed I'd have totally loved to finish my business inside her, but the sad fact is that she's seven years older than Mark Ruffalo, and most of the time she looks more like his mom than his wife, which I guess makes some sort of sick sense considering her role in the film. There's this guy who keeps recommending me to read something by José Saramago, but there's just no way. Reading about his writing style in Wikipedia made me queasy enough.

Julianne Moore, in perkier times

The same day I watched Blindness I also watched Primer, but I don't have much to say about it, mostly because I didn't quite understand most of it. Primer is a micro budget time travel movie, and the only reason I've even heard of it was because I like xkcd. It's like, I could tell that it's a really good film, the acting is very good and the photography is excellent for such a tiny budget, but the plot and dialogs are so technical and unnecessarily complicated that most of the time I just zoned out and waited for it to end. I didn't suffer too much, because it really isn't a bad film at all, it just left me very confused and made me feel really really dumb.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

$6M in the '70s, $50M in 2007. Stupid economy.

Today I finished watching the canceled 2007 version of The Bionic Woman (simply titled Bionic Woman, without the 'the' part, which of course makes it completely different) starring British actress Michelle Ryan. For obvious reasons I really enjoyed watching it, even though it wasn't that great. The action was pretty good, but the writing and acting left a lot to be desired. Not that that was a good reason to go and cancel it like that after only eight episodes. Since when does mediocre writing prevent a TV show from getting a fourth season? That's just silly, especially when you consider a show like Bionic Woman, which had one thing going for it that very few shows come even a tiny bit close to. That is, the lovely Michelle Ryan, playing the titular role of Jaime Sommers, the chick with robotic parts stuffed into her. Boy, would I like to stuff robot parts into her. As anyone can clearly see, Ms. Ryan's physicality is the stuff dreams are made of. She's just so unmistakably female it's remarkable. And ridiculous. And annoying. There's absolutely no reason for anyone to look their gender in such an obvious way. I mean, even the manliest of men have nipples! For Bionic Woman she used an American accent (with the help of a dialect coach), and it sounds pretty convincing. In one of the episodes, however, her character goes undercover as a British student, and that means that she gets to use her real British accent, which is like the hottest thing I've ever seen on American television. Another character even makes a comment about how outrageously hot she sounds that way. That would be the stock character of the geeky tech guy, who in my opinion was actually the most likable character in the whole thing. He didn't really do much other than drool over Ms. Ryan, which made him completely believable. It's pretty ridiculous to assume that any healthy male would be able to do anything but that in her fragrant presence. Mind you, I'm not completely out of touch with reality. She may look extremely cool on screen, but while looking through some photos of her I've noticed that whenever she's not clothed and styled by TV professionals she actually tends to look pretty trashy, which some dudes may like, but I don't. This may mean that she's much better an actress than she is a person, as often is the case with hot chicks, even the ones who are not professional actresses. Um. No, that doesn't sound right. Every hot chick in the world is basically a professional actress, it's just that some of them don't get paid for it. Hmm. No, that's not right either. Every hot chick in this world is a professional actress, and they all get paid for it, in one way or another. Gawd I hate them.

Michelle Ryan, pretending to be naked

The only reason I've been watching Merlin, which is a BBC series about knights and wizards and dragons and other poofy stuff of that sort, is because I was promised that Michelle Ryan was in it. So far I've watched eight episodes on VOD, and she's only been in like two of them. Oh well. No harm done. It's not like I've been watching them sober or anything.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Have you ever eaten alien meat?

Today I finished watching Children of Earth, the five part Torchwood miniseries. I really like Torchwood! It's so much darker and more mature than Doctor Who, the TV show off which it had been spun. How can you not love a show about a semi-secret group of pretty people who fight aliens and make love to anyone and anything they can get their little paws on? If there's anything modern science fiction doesn't have enough of it's gay sex, so I'm awfully happy with how pretty much every single Torchwood character had at the very least made out with a member of the same gender. And the fact that their HQ is situated over a spacetime rift in Cardiff means that there's plenty of funny Welsh accents to go around. Too bad it doesn't have any nudity or four letter words. I like nudity and four letter words. The second season of the series ended with the deaths of two main characters, and so Children of Earth begins with a staff of only three Torchwood members. Apparently some evil alien race has contacted the British government and requested a reasonable welcome gift in the form of 10% of Earth's annoying loud midgets, also known as its children. What exactly are the aliens going to do with so many little human monsters? How will the British bureaucrats select and transport the lucky kids who get to go on a trip to outer space? How could humanity possibly survive with 10% less whining? Watch what is basically a 300 minute episode and find out! I did, and very much enjoyed it. After the long set-up, I was really curious about what the aliens are going to look like. Unfortunately, you never get a good look at the one alien that zaps down to Earth, but what little you do get to see is pretty damn cool. I think I like it better this way anyway. Getting scary glimpses of a monster is much cooler than a big silly puppet, a fake looking CGI creation or, gawd forbid, some dude in a rubber costume. Eve Myles is still pretty cute as the voluptuous Gwen Cooper, Gareth David-Lloyd is very cool as dork-turned-poof Ianto Jones, and John Barrowman is just annoyingly handsome as the annoyingly handsome Captain Jack Harkness. I was happy to find out that in real life he's a full-time homosexual, and not merely bi like his character in the show. If all goes well, they're supposed to start working on a fourth Torchwood season next year, which is very good news. And if anyone wondered, I don't recommend anyone to ever eat any alien meat. That is, unless you really really like him.

Eve Myles, not showing the huge gap between her two front teeth

I don't really know much about Wales (the country, not the marine mammals) or Welsh culture, except that Goldie Lookin Chain are from there. I really like Goldie Lookin Chain. They're Welsh and they're rappers and they're hilarious, even though I can't understand most of their lyrics. "Your Mother's Got a Penis" is a beautiful and tender song that is never too far from my mind. I really need to put some of their songs on my MP3 player, even though I'm pretty sure that my mom doesn't keep a male member hidden in her gown.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Near-30 angst isn't quite so attractive

Yesterday I finished watching the first and only season of My So-Called Life. Um. Yeah. Why did I watch it? How does it fit in with all the Torchwood, Star Trek TOS, Bionic Woman and Count Duckula episodes I've been watching lately? Well, it doesn't. Some people may call it nostalgia. I'd rather call it 'a 29 year old creep lusting after some little chickiepoo he used to lust for when he was 15'. You see, just like any other kid in my school whose parents owned a TV set, I too had a big fat crush over 15 year old Clair Danes back in the mid-'90s. It was just something you did back then, had you a penis and a face full of pimples. Never shall I forget the way one of my old classmates had described the phenomenon to me one day. "She's has like no boobs at all," he said, "but she gives me this warm, hungry feeling inside me". And so, a decade and a half later, I came back to the TV show that first introduced her to me, and found it rather entertaining for what it is, meaning, a show without any aliens or monsters to speak of. The writing is pretty good, and some of the acting is quite spectacular, especially young Ms. Danes' performance. What I failed to notice back then was just how shallow and selfish her character really is, especially for such a sensitive and articulate person. I guess when you're a teenage girl you can pass 'shallow' for 'hormonal'. As someone who went to an all-boys highschool, I'm happy to say that I know very little about teenage girls. It's like her whole crush on Jared Leto's (didn't you just love watching him getting the shit beat out of in Fight Club?) character, around which the main storyline revolves, is based on how pretty he is, and not much more. I mean, I guess he's sort of nice and all, but he's not exactly the brightest pickle in the jar. A himbo, if you will. I dunno, maybe it's just that being the big fat dork that I am, I naturally wanted her to let the dorky neighbor boy into her pants instead. Another surprise was how ugly some of the clothes women wear on the show are. Maybe it's just the type of film stock they used back then or a poor film-to-video transfer, but I don't remember '90s fashion to be quite so lackluster and unattractive. In my head the 1990's were the highpoint of human culture in every respect, and I don't like it when things make me have doubts about it.

Photographic proof that Ms. Danes had died 15 years ago and was subsequently replaced by a flesh covered fembot.

While looking through some photos of Claire Danes, I came across a couple of very recent ones, which kinda creeped me out. I mean, she's undoubtedly a very handsome woman, but she definitely doesn't look 15 anymore. I think that cute teenagers shouldn't be allowed to grow up. It's just too cruel. And yes, I know that she's only a year older than I am and that everybody ages, even me, but 14 years ago I was even fatter than I am today, and my skin was far worse, so aging wasn't such a tragedy for me. In fact, I can't wait for my hair to start going grey. Men with grey hair are totally hot.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

"Upstairs inside, downstairs outside" is not as filthy as it sounds

A couple of days ago I finished watching both the American version of Life on Mars and the second season of Ashes to Ashes. Mental time travel is so much fun! I really like the original Life on Mars, so when I heard they're going to do an American version it kinda made me want to barf, which is why I put off watching it for so long. The first few episodes were pretty painful to watch. It was like they took a bunch of pretty American actors and forced them reenact scenes from the original show, only with a New-York accent and less acting talent. The American Sam Tyler looked way too handsome, and Harvey Keitel seemed way too old to play Gene Hunt. I mean, he's friggin 70 years old! A policeman his age would've been retired years ago! I'm also pretty sure that the BBC Gene Hunt isn't Jewish. The thing is, after a few boring episodes (at least for someone who's watched the BBC series a bunch of times) the storyline actually got sort of interesting, and I started to really enjoy all those little new additions to the basic plot, even the seemingly unnecessary CGI Red Rovers. I like it how it dares to go places that the BBC show took over three years to get to, like having Sam interact with other people from his own time, more or less. And Gretchen Mol is so adorable! She looks almost exactly like she did in The Thirteenth Floor, and that was like ten years ago. She's almost as sweet looking as Liz White, the original Annie Cartwright. Ms. White looked so cute in her little police chick outfit I just wanted to gauge my eyes out. It's a shame that the American version was canceled so soon, but the very weird ending sort of makes up for it. It completely differs from the BBC concept of what the world of Life on Mars really is, taking it to a whole other genre, and the final shot is absolutely perfect.

Ashes to Ashes is more like the original Life on Mars, but it's also pretty different, primarily because it takes place in the early '80s instead of 1973, and because it centers around a female character, played by the lovely Keeley Hawes. Most of the time it looks like they're trying their best to make her look as silly as possible, but I guess that's how women used to dress back then. As hot as Ms. Hawes may be, I still find it pretty difficult to be attracted to women who are dressed in a style that reminds me of the way my mom used to dress when I was a kid. Gene and Chris and Ray are still here from the original show, and I don't use any of the actors' names because I firmly believe that these three characters are completely real and I refuse to admit otherwise. The fresh faced Montserrat Lombard is also pretty adorable as Shaz, the fresh faced adorable police chick. Season two ended in a pretty unsettling scene, in which the 1982 reality invades the present instead of the other way around, so the third season, which is being filmed these days, should be pretty interesting.

Keeley Hawes, aka Bolly Knickers

There's a series of "artistic" black and white photos of Keeley Hawes you can find online, in which she's not wearing much of anything. Gawd bless her dear heart for being so young and frivolous. If more women were like that I wouldn't have to spend so much time torturing myself by wondering what Michelle Ryan looks like naked. Yeah, I've started watching the cancelled 2007 remake of The Bionic Woman. Sigh.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Personal demons are a bitch, especially the winged kind

Today I watched Max Payne, based on the video game and starring some underwear model with an extra nipple, and I very much enjoyed it. Watching this movie, I didn't know anything about the Max Payne video game series. The truth is, I don't really know anything about modern video games. I'd like to say that this is because I think video games are stupid and childish, but the reality is that I absolutely suck at them. The only game I enjoy playing is the first Doom, and I only play it with those cheat codes that give you unlimited life and ammo. I also usually replace the original background music with a different album each time. I guess I'm just retarded that way. Anyway. When the Max Payne movie came out here last year I didn't bother to go see it. The trailer seemed cool enough, but the reviews were just terrible, and I've read somewhere that the cool looking demons aren't really real, and the PG-13 rating was a big fat turn off. Do I regret not going to see it back then? I'm not sure. What I watched today was the unrated cut of the film, which is a Hollywood doublespeak way of saying that this is how it would have looked like in theaters had they decided to release it with an R rating at the time. I can't say the plot is very original, but I really enjoyed the movie's overall gloomy style. It was shot by the Israeli Jonathan Saar, and it looks so dark and pretty you could just die, with every frame filled with falling snow or rain or smoke. The special effects are also very good, especially towards the ending, with all Imaginary Hell breaking loose. Marky Mark must be a grand master at the art of fellatio, otherwise I'd find it pretty hard to understand why he keeps getting acting work. He doesn't really do much here other than his usual 'confused and annoyed' act (Family Guy is still the funniest thing on TV), and one can only imagine how cooler this movie could have been with a leading man whose facial expressions do not remind you of a dead fish. Olga Kurylenko is just stupid hot (I think she's from Russia or one of those other made-up countries), which makes her role, which is short on both screen time and exposed skin, pretty damn frustrating, as any Google image search would tell you that Ms. Kurylenko looks absolutely lovely with no clothes on. Stupid PG-13 rating. They could add blood splatters in post production for the unrated version, but they couldn't delete whatever it was that covered her torso in that scene digitally. Stupid primitive technology. The gorgeous Mila Kunis is also severely underused. When I first saw her in this my reaction was 'oh crap, here comes Jackie from That '70s Show', but she does do a very good job whenever she's onscreen, which makes you wonder why you don't see her more often in movies and TV shows that aren't Family Guy or Robot Chicken.

Olga Kurylenko. Ukraine is that place with all the drunks, right?

Olga Kurylenko is co-starring in an Israeli movie called Kirot, which is supposed to be released here soon, as a Russian hitwoman or something. Her co-star in it is some dumb Israeli broad who's supposed to like sing pretty or something, and all the dialogs between their characters are done in English. The trailer looks pretty awful, mostly because the English doesn't sound all that natural, especially on the Israeli side. It doesn't sound like the kind of English a simple little supermarket cashier chick would use, it sounds more like the kind of English a Tel-Aviv film student would write in. I'll probably go see it anyway, if only to see Ms. Kurylenko handling a gun. Chicks with guns are pretty awesome. Mila Kunis gets to shoot a bunch of people in Max Payne, which is definitely a good enough reason to like it.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

My city screams, but don't we all?

Today I watched The Spirit, based on Will Eisner's comic book series, directed by Frank Miller and starring a bunch of supposedly hot chicks. I'm not completely sure how I feel about it. The Spirit is yet another movie that was never released here to cinemas, even though it was supposed to be, but I guess watching it in 720p is good enough. My only knowledge of the original comic book series comes from an '80s 3D comic book that I got at a Berlin flee market a few months ago. It collected several different stories from the '40s (converted into anaglyph 3D by Ray Zone) and they're all very good. There's a lot to like about this film adaptation, but ultimately it doesn't add up to anything more than a shiny piece of fluff, never achieving true greatness. First of all, it looks absolutely fantastic and brilliantly designed, feeling more than anything like a Sin City sequel, with everything about it being pretty and perfect and desaturated and in soft focus, with the occasional trademark high contrast shot here and there. That's also a pretty big problem, because Will Eisner was not Frank Miller, so when you make a Spirit movie that looks like it's based on a Frank Miller graphic novel you're kinda missing the whole point of doing a Spirit movie. The film is very stylized, both in looks and content, never taking itself too seriously, which I'm not sure was a very good idea. It was never clear to me whether I was watching a Spirit parody or an actual Spirit movie. I guess part of it comes from the fact that it was rated PG-13. Unlike Sin City, which contained highly stylized yet extremely brutal violence, the violence here looks like it belongs in a Ren & Stimpy cartoon. In some ways PG-13 violence like this is far more immoral than the graphic kind, because it shows just as much brutality, only without the gory results. One scene comes to mind, in which a fluffy white kitten is murdered by the villain, and all you see is some fur flying through the air and a couple of blue bloodless eyeballs circling a drain. Not cool at all. I'm also not a huge fan of movies that were shot entirely against green screens. I think it makes them look too small, mainly because anything that isn't small just looks fake. Although, I did really like Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow and Sin City, so I guess fakeness can be forgiven when a movie is good enough. And you know what else can make me forgive any movie for any flaws it may have? That's right. The problem with The Spirit is that the hot chicks in it just aren't that hot. Scarlett Johansson? Meh. Eva Mendes? Eww. Sarah Paulson? Cute, but not sexy in any sort of way. The only truly awesome looking chick in this thing in Jaime King, in the role of the Angel of Death or something, and she's so ridiculously underused it's not even funny. It's not a bad movie or anything, and some parts of it are actually pretty fun, but I don't think I will be watching it again sober any time soon.

If Death really looked like that I would've arranged a meeting a long time ago

I saw Jaime King in 3D once. Sure, it was at a screening of My Bloody Valentine 3D, but I'm pretty sure that's just as good as real life. High definition 3D is a pretty awesome way of looking at pretty ladies. I wonder if in the future we're going to see a return of those sleazy porn theaters from the '70s and '80s, only this time in 3D. Sounds like a pretty great idea to me!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Let the right one in, then bore their brains out until they beg you to be let out

Today I watched Låt den rätte komma in (aka Let the Right One In), a Swedish pre-teen vampire film, and I kinda hated it. Sometimes I think that unlike some parts of the world, such as North America and the UK, where the art of cinema is considered as a form of storytelling, in most countries they see it as a form of torture. I know that the genre of vampire stories has been raped in the last few years in every possible orifice big and small, but I don't think it's ever been done in such a boring and pointless yet frustratingly beautiful sort of way. Sure, I liked some parts of it, like the few shots that show the results of pouring acid over half your face, and a scene where a woman is being attacked by cats (here's some sound advice for future filmmakers: never put CGI cats with real ones in the same frame. it looks ridiculous) and one that shows what happens when a vampire enters an apartment they weren't properly invited into. And the outdoor scenes look just beautiful, though I'm sure that's not too difficult to achieve when you're shooting in Sweden and there's pretty white snow everywhere. And it was sort of fun to discover that some words in Swedish are the same as in German (the little vampire girl says she's 12 years old, ungefähr). So why didn't I like it? Because it's so painfully slow and so light on actual substance that the two hour run felt like weeks. Even the scenes that involved the dorky schoolboy being bullied by a group of his peers, a subject I can easily relate to, didn't really do much for me. Maybe it's because all those pale little Swedish boys looked equally wimpy to me. And howcome all the movie vamps these days are always such pussies? Even the one we get here, who does feed on human blood, is reluctant to kill someone herself, and when she's finally left with no other choice but to do so, she cries afterwards. Vampires are supposed to be the coolest creatures on the planet, so why are the ones we get in movies and on TV are so tortured and uncomfortable with what they are? Is it because viewers would have a hard time identifying with a 'bad' character? Well that's pretty dumb, because vampires aren't evil by nature, not more so than lions are for feeding on antelopes and cows are for eating grass. Humans are omnivores who eat the flesh of murdered creatures because they're stupid and mean. Vampires, on the other hand, have to drink human blood in order to survive, so that's exactly what they do. There's nothing evil about surviving. And you can't go the Dexter way either, feeding only on bad guys, because it's simply not practical. When you get hungry, you look for something to stuff into your face, and that's true for everybody. So the next time you come across a movie vampire, don't make a fuss and be sure to offer yourself up to them as a willing link in the food chain. Remember, a full vampire is a happy vampire.

I can has Swedish mitbolz?

Looking at the way this movie was shot, it's easy to see why the whole world thinks that all Swedish people are a bunch of creepy pedos. You even get a brief glimpse of a little girl's vampy crotch! Thank gawd I hate children so friggin much. Horrible little things, even the ones that don't literally suck your blood.