Sundays are now lazy days for me. Going forward, I’m just going to re-post other people’s work or just do something silly. Today it’s extremely rare footage of the first film Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone made.
I said yesterday that I wasn’t going to go out of my way go post every day anymore, but I didn’t specifically promise to end my streak. I’ll post when I have something particular to say. So, with today’s post, it’s been 215 in as many days, and tomorrow’s ridiculousness will make me 216 for 216, but that’s probably where the streak will end.
So what inspired me? You already know, dipshit. You read the title of the post. While no movie could possibly live up to the hype this one has received, I’m finally watching Tombstone. So please, shut up.
First observation (a silly one): Sam Elliott always looked old. In this movie, he was 3 years younger than I am today, and while I wouldn’t say I have a youthful appearance, I think I look younger than he. I definitely act younger. What can I say? I’ve got issues.
Second observation: I love watching movies from an earlier decade to see a historical snapshot of where actors we at the time. Movies like this have actors on their way out, actors well-established, actors who recently got their big break, and actors that haven’t yet hit big, but our hindsight tells us they will. We also have a sprinkling of actors that were around only for that brief period before they dropped off the radar scope.
Third observation: Val Kilmer’s performance was flawless. Simply flawless. You can’t completely dislike this movie because of his performance. Nevertheless, the movie earned only two award nominations that hardly count, and as far as I’m concerned, that’s as good as any metric as to why we shouldn’t take them seriously.
Enough observations. Did I like it? Hells, yes. Plus, it’s been the source of so many damn memes. Back when I watched the Simpsons, I’d often miss the references to, for example, Dr. Strangelove until I saw that. Maybe now I’ll get some of your jokes.
The Mandalorian is back! But why is Tatooine? I get it. Tatooine and a few of its inhabitants hold a special place in the hearts of all who watch Star Wars, but the whole premise of the planet is that it’s an obscure place where nothing interesting happens, making it the perfect hiding place for a young Luke Skywalker. Yet here it is. Again. The center of a Star Wars story.
But let’s move past that. Jon Favreau should be handed the reins to Star Wars. He knows not only how to tell a story, but also specifically a Star Wars story. Two episodes in, and this looks to be as good as season one was. I still love the sign language of the Sand People. Nice touch. Though I’m not sure everyone else is happy with the structure, I also like when a TV series is episodic (original Star Trek for the win!) with a larger story subservient to that.
I also hope their paths cross again.
Rodians cook their meat well done.
No universal translator? Star Trek >> Star Wars.
Someone needs to stat out that Krayt dragon for D&D.
Boba Fett must have been the runt of the Mandalorian litter. He was a wimp. As always. YMMV.
I wanted to do something stupid, so I did. I watched the Onion Movie, and it didn’t disappoint. It’s the kind of movie that you can’t review. It’s just a ridiculous mess of funny anecdotes, each serving as a segue into the next. Just when I think it’s getting old, I suddenly find myself again laughing out loud at something ridiculously funny. It’s also great to see a snapshot of Hollywood in 2008, seeing which actors were on the rise, and which were on their way out. Plus, Jed Rees has a nice skit making fun of D&D players. That’s always fun for me. The Onion Movie is showing on Starz.
If you have a stupid sense of humor, this could be your thing too. As always. YMMV.
Borat 2 inspired me to start a 30-day free trial of Amazon Prime. I’m glad it was free.
Okay, that was a bit rough, but it makes for a good tagline, so I offer no apologies. Borat 2 wasn’t bad; it just wasn’t as good as his first movie. Maybe I was expecting too much. The charm of the first movie was Borat acting crazy and watching the honest reactions of unaware citizens. Too many people recognize him, so that’s much more difficult. The movie is amusingly self-aware of that fact.
The other strength of the first movie was that Borat never learned his lesson. He started the movie screwed up and ended it that way. Not so here. In Borat 2, Borat returns to the “U S and A” but through circumstance is paired with his daughter, Tutar (Maria Bakalova). The movie makes a story out of their relationship, and that’s why I don’t think it was as good. It’s supposed to be a feel-good story, but if you focus on the story as serious, the premise is far too depressing for a comedy.
But that’s okay, as long as we get Cohen’s over-the-top comedy, right? Well, there was only one cringe-worthy moment for me, which was when Tutar speaks to the group of Women Republicans. There was also a funny moment, let’s just say, related to abortion, but it wasn’t embarrassing. It was just a misunderstanding. I can get that from any comedy. I did laugh out loud on occasion, but not enough. In fact, at one point, I walked away from the TV to put water on for pasta. I wouldn’t be able to do that while watching the first movie.
As a side note, the Giuliani thing is greatly exaggerated, probably on purpose. I suspect it was intentionally overblown in order to hype the movie. It seems to have worked.
I hope I have better luck with the Expanse, the Boys, the Man in the High Castle, and Good Omens. If there’s time, I’ll add in Jack Ryan and Bosch.
I really wanted a proper sequel for Borat. As always, YMMV.
I hate courtroom dramas. While I’m not a litigator, I can spot the nonsense when I see it, and legal dramas are always about “drama” first and “legal” last. The same is true for any industry. Some liberties were taken with the story, but based on a little research, this movie largely gets it right. And that story is frustrating. From Wikipedia:
Based on the story of the Chicago Seven, a group of eight defendants charged by the federal government with conspiracy in 1969 and 1970, inciting to riot, and other charges related to anti-Vietnam War and countercultural protests that took place in Chicago, Illinois, on the occasion of the 1968 Democratic National Convention.
The trial was a mess. The judge (ironically) showed nothing but contempt for the defense. All of the charges, including the numerous contempt charges, were overturned on appeal. The Seventh Circuit ordered a new trial, which the Attorney General declined to pursue.
Sacha Baron Cohen was awesome. Joseph Gordon-Levitt was awesome. Yahya Abdul-Mateen II was awesome. Mark Rylance was awesome. Frank Langella was awesome.
The Trial of the Chicago 7 is streaming on Netflix. There’s no reason not to watch this movie. As always, YMMV.
It’s October, so all of my streaming services are suggesting horror (or horror-adjacent). I’m not a fan of the genre, or at least not of slasher films or any film relying on stupid behavior to advance the plot. Also, while I’m more than willing to suspend disbelief, I require something … anything … to provide a basis for that suspension. I don’t get that from most horror movies.
That said, I’ve had a recent string of fairly good luck with the genre, and the 2020 reboot(?) of the Invisible Man continues that trend. It’s spooky and scary in a way that preys on my own fears. Mild spoilers ahead. I don’t need people snooping on me, and the technology at the center of this movie (currently being researched in the real world) takes that to another level. It can also be used to frame you for a crime. Also spooky. The only thing missing was the use of Deep Fake to have the main character destroyed by cancel culture. That would have been the scariest thing of all, but maybe they didn’t include it to avoid an NC-17 rating. 🙂
So, how did Dungeons & Dragons almost ruin it? It took away from, dare I say, the believability of this film even after you suspend your disbelief in the underlying technology. The technology makes you invisible. Okay, I can accept that. However, every edition of D&D has taught us (you know, the nerds) that invisibility definitely does not hide the sounds you make, and it doesn’t give you superhuman strength. The villain was far too quiet and far too strong. The technology consists of a ton of cameras. There’s no noise dampening apparent from its design, and if that’s what they were going with, they should have justified it within the script by both an association with someone well-versed in that technology and something apparent in the design. Instead, presumably for dramatic effect, they actually made the technology loud when the main character first discovers it.
But I know this is just me, so even I just let that go. Accordingly, with only a couple of exceptions, stupidity isn’t necessary to advance the plot, and there’s only one instance that I noticed where the villain (sort of) appears to be in two places at the same time. Also, once an invisible person grabs you, it becomes a grappling match, and you’re not at nearly as much of a disadvantage as a fist fight. I seem to be talking myself out of liking this movie, but I still liked it. I guess I’m just a sucker.
The misdirection about 20 minutes before the end of the movie was pretty good even though I saw it coming, and the ending was satisfying if not realistic. (C’mon. The guy’s a cop.)
There are no mid-credits or after-credits scenes. You’re welcome. As always, YMMV.
Last night was a long-overdue quarantine watch party for Venom. I’ve mentioned Venom before, but these are my viewing notes for the movie.
Side Note: The first time I saw Tom Hardy was in Star Trek: Nemesis, which is a guilty pleasure of mine. So yeah, I know, <slow-witted voice>”But Star Trek Nemesis sucks, man!”</slow-witted voice> Regardless, Hardy showed me something in that movie.
Second Side Note: The “technical difficulties” to which I refer below are just commercial breaks I can’t fast forward. Even though I’m on commercial free Hulu, I still get commercials when streaming from an established network like FX. The commercial breaks are five minutes long, and I’m trying to keep up with the other attendees at the quarantine watch party. Sort of ruined it for me.
Outside of combat, what superhero (in the movies) rides a motorcycle? I can’t think of any. Does it have to do with the fact that Venom is an anti-hero? Directors and screenwriters make these choices intentionally.
“Heights aren’t really my thing.” Foreshadowing.
It’s funny how the ambushing journalist is presented as the good guy despite us not really knowing how much of a bad guy the mark is.
“What you did got me fired.” No, what *you* did got you fired and should get you disbarred.
Killing all of those people at the market seemed unnecessary.
Due to technical difficulties, there’s a gap in my viewing here. You’re welcome.
“This is First Contact.”
Nice special effects on the “possession.”
Due to technical difficulties, there’s a gap in my viewing here. You’re welcome.
Now that the symbiote is inside him, Eddie is superhuman, yet he doesn’t seem to be asking himself why. I guess he’s more concerned with the bullets that are flying by his head. You’d think he’d have some time while hanging out in that tree.
I’ve been that thirsty before.
When the voices in your head say, “Do not open the door,” you … call a shrink.
Technical difficulties. Dammit. Way too many commercials.
“My legs are broken and now they’re not. What’s happening?” Has Eddie never seen an action movie before?
Awww, what a cute kid … WTF?!
Even more “technical difficulties.”
I can’t wait to see Venom face Spidey.
There’s a lot more character development in this movie than I appreciated the first time around.
Bye bye, puppy.
I really wish the villain didn’t always have the same powers as the (anti-)hero. It’s trite at this point.
Freaking technical difficulties.
This has to be the weirdest fight scene I’ve ever seen. Sure, the special effects are great, but this is just weird. But I like it.
Superhero movies have no concern for the economic damage the characters cause. 🙂
Damn, that was one hell of a Stan Lee cameo.
Tater tots? Who does Venom think he is? Napoleon Dynamite?
If I had a voice in my head, I wonder if I could suppress my instinct to reply out loud. Of course, I hope I never find out.
It’s really fashionable to hate on Adam Sandler nowadays. Everyone loves to criticize what everyone likes, which makes no sense until you realize people always love to complain, and the squeaky wheels tend to get the grease. With that, I’m going to complain.
This one was not for me at all. The story was completely unoriginal, and Sandler’s main character is the mentally challenged goofball with a speech impediment that almost everyone in his hometown loves to bully. One woman is romantically interested in him, but he doesn’t act on it because he’s too nervous. A few of the kids don’t like seeing him bullied because they’re “good guys.” Because it’s a Halloween movie, there’s something scary at the center of the plot. We’re supposed to cheer when the bullies are harmed and when the loveable characters get their predictable, happy endings. Yeah, nothing new going on here, and the execution is rather week despite a solid cast.
But hey, if campy and formulaic is your thing, then you’re going to have a different reaction, so as always, YMMV.