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JaseSF
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« Reply #6390 on: June 05, 2013, 07:47:48 PM »

American Dreamer (1984): Frustrated housewife Cathy Palmer (JoBeth Williams) enters a writing contest hoping to win a dream trip to Paris, France. Ultimately she wins the contest, based upon writing an adventure of an international female spy named Rebecca Ryan, but discovers her husband Kevin Palmer (James Staley) is less than enthused about going on such a trip leading to Cathy's taking the unexpected turn of going all on her own. Once there, Cathy meets with an unexpected accident that leaves her believing she is in actuality Rebecca Ryan herself! This sets her out on a path of international intrigue, alongside Alan McMann (Tom Conti) whom she mistakes for another book character named Dmitri, and trying to solve a murder mystery.

This wasn't too bad. It remained interesting throughout and says a lot about the old-fashioned ideas of men treating their wives as little more than servants and slaves and trying to suppress any ambition and desire. Conti and Giancarlo Giannini as Victor Marchand also help to make this one fun and surprisingly humorous at times. ***1/2 out of ***** stars.

Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House (1948):  Finding he and his family is outgrowing their high rise city apartment, Jim Blandings (Cary Grant) decides to build a house in the country in Connecticut instead but finds this to be a heck of a lot more trouble than he initially ever expected or dreamed.

This was a fun little family comedy from the era. Leads Grant, Myrna Loy as wife Muriel, and Melvyn Douglas as family friend/ex-beau of Muriel Bill Cole manage to keep this always interesting and entertaining. It deals with the dream of building your own family home and everyone having their little suburban nestegg so to speak. It is slightly dated at times especially with regards to the black housekeeper but isn't really so different from many other films from its era in this regard. More at times sentimental and dramatic than funny, the three leads nevertheless never fail to keep things amusing.  ***1/2 out of ***** stars.

Abbott and Costello Meet the Keystone Kops (1955): Abbott and Costello play two bumbling get rich quick schemers named Harry Pierce and Willie Piper who are swindled out of their money by a con man named Joseph Gorman (Fred Clark). Piper and Pierce decide to trail Gorman and follow him to California where he's posing as a silent era movie director named Sergei Toumanoff. Inevitably Piper and Pierce unwittingly end up starring in several of Toumanoff's film efforts.

While a lesser effort from A & C, this is still a lot of fun. It mixes more traditional silent movie style physical comedy into the mix than is usual for A & C. Sometimes it works well, other times less so. One will miss there being a few less jokes in this one perhaps. The best bits involve a police-robber mistaken identity chase sequence which drives Clark's character bonkers and the final Kops style chase towards the end. Certainly a fine way to pass away an afternoon or boring evening sometime.  ***1/2 out of ***** stars.

Rising Damp (1980):  Grimy English landlord Rigsby (Leonard Rossiter) plots to get the most bang for his buck out of his broken down townhouse tricking students John (Christopher Strauli) and Philip (Don Warrington) into reluctantly sharing a room together while he eyes a room next to his would-be romantic conquest Miss Ruth Jones (Frances de la Tour), who's more interested in romance with most anyone else including the latest arrival, slick middle class war veteran Seymour (Denholm Elliott).

This film based on the successful 1970s TV comedy series never quite reaches that series level of dark humor and suffers in many ways due to it. Also it suffers somewhat due to the passing of Richard Beckinsale who originally played Alan in the TV series. The humor here seems much broader and more focused on Frances de la Tour's Miss Ruth Jones and her being the center of attention for all the male characters in the film, albeit each for different reasons. The best bits come when Rossiter is let loose a bit to play Rigsby. Still somewhat disappointing compared to the terrific TV series yet undeniably funny at times especially with regards to Rossiter's portrayal as Rigsby. ***1/2 out of ***** stars.
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« Reply #6391 on: June 05, 2013, 10:43:47 PM »

"Thunderstruck" (2004)

http://www.youtube.com/v/bY1_6MaXfPg

This rock n' roll road comedy is kinda like "Detroit Rock City" with an Australian accent. In 1991, five Aussie band mates and rabid AC/DC fans make a pact: when one of them dies, the rest of the guys will see to it that he gets buried next to their hero, Bon Scott. A dozen years later, the friends have drifted apart  but when one passes away, they re-unite and head off on a cross-continental journey to fulfill the promise to their fallen pal, getting into numerous wacky situations along the way. Funny stuff, with a good bit of heart as well.
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Jack
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« Reply #6392 on: June 06, 2013, 07:07:13 AM »

Jack the Giant Killer (2013) - the Asylum's take on the whole Jack and the Beanstalk tale. A young kid gets some magic beans, a giant beanstalk grows, he goes up the beanstalk and encounters high adventure! This was just okay. Seemed like it was made to appeal to kids with its kind of silly humor. Some of the special effects, like a floating castle, were pretty cool. Other effects, like the giant CGI triceratops looking things, were pretty awful. There was a princess who was kind of hot. Meh, it was a dopey and moderately enjoyable waste of 90 minutes. 3/5.
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« Reply #6393 on: June 06, 2013, 08:58:22 AM »

A NOISY DELIVERY (2013): Basically a series of long takes of people staring at the camera in silence for several minutes, occasionally ranting nonsensically, while atonal music plays in the background for an hour. I can not figure out why the director made this or who might enjoy it. Fortunately for you, you'll never have to see it. 0.5/5.
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« Reply #6394 on: June 06, 2013, 11:06:03 PM »

"Urban Legend" (1998)

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A psycho killer is running amuck on an ivy league college campus, murdering co-eds according to the "rules" set by various Urban Legends. Can Alicia Witt figure out who the nut job is before she has no friends left??

This flick was one of the better teen-horror flicks to come out of the late 90s "Scream" wanna-be craze. The murder scenes are impressively staged, Robert "Freddy Krueger" Englund makes a welcome cameo apearance as one of the potential murder suspects, and Tara Reid was still hot when she made this, as opposed to the "hot mess" she is nowadays. :lol:

Worth a look, but avoid the sequels....
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indianasmith
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« Reply #6395 on: June 06, 2013, 11:57:36 PM »

I watched REC3 today - this is an excellent "rage virus zombie" film that stands alone quite nicely, with no previous viewing of the other two required to enjoy it.  Also, it takes an interesting religious angle on the infected that is absent in the other two. The story of a wedding reception ruined by a zombie outbreak is actually quite compelling, and the actress who plays the bride is very lovely. 4/5
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« Reply #6396 on: June 07, 2013, 03:03:02 AM »

watched the last couple of days:

Jack Brooks: Monster Slayer (2007) ~ Young Plumber trying to deal with his aggressive behavior must face demonic monsters taking over teacher and students at night school. Old School practical effects with a bit of gross out humor. Great casting, including Robert Englund giving hilarious performance playing one of the possessed. 4/5

Black Sheep: Unrated (2006) ~ Young man with sheep phobia returns after 15 years to his family's sheep farm. His "evil" brother runs a lab performing sinister DNA experiments on local sheep. Soon enough the zombified sheep go on a roaring rampage of destruction against humans. Refreshing horror comedy playing it mostly straight with quite a few laugh-out-loud moments. However, fine humor and funny characters take the backseat in favor of showing (rather well made) gory practical effects during the final half. 3.5/5

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« Reply #6397 on: June 07, 2013, 04:33:59 PM »

Inseminoid- The first half hour was like a dumbed down , trashier Star Trek but not as fun as that sounds. It got better after that when one of them becomes a raging psycho killer. It's kind of 70's looking for an early 80's movie. The people have essentially zero ability to defend themselves or figure out how to do anything. Even for horror movies they are particularly inept. best viewed late late night. 3.5/5
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Jack
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« Reply #6398 on: June 08, 2013, 06:37:51 AM »

Beast Beneath (2011) - a girl finds a treasure map and her and her boyfriend go to this big park in LA to try to find whatever is hidden there. That's not until the very end though - we get all sorts of backstory about the origins of the treasure map, various people get close to the cave where the treasure is hidden and get eaten by some guy in a monster suit, and then our main characters meet this homeless guy who for no apparent reason is in psychic contact with the guy who originally owned the treasure. This was slow moving and pretty dull. The makeup people did a good job on the folks who got bit in the face by the monster, that was probably the only noteworthy thing. Characters were uninteresting, plot was uninteresting, the whole thing left me asking "Should I just turn this off?" 2.5/5.
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FatFreddysCat
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« Reply #6399 on: June 08, 2013, 03:05:49 PM »

"Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief" (2010)

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Family-friendly action/fantasy based on the young-adult book series about a typical 21st century high schooler who is stunned to discover that his father is the Greek god Poseidon... which naturally makes him a target of some very nasty supernatural creatures, and gets him mixed up in the middle of a potential war between Gods that could potentially destroy the Earth.

An action packed flick with lotsa cool monster effects and decent performances by Pierce Brosnan, Sean Bean, Rosario Dawson (hot!) and Uma Thurmann.

My ten year old finished reading the novel earlier this week, and he reports that the movie was "good, even though they changed a lot from the book." :lol:
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JaseSF
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« Reply #6400 on: June 08, 2013, 08:00:43 PM »

Cannonball Run II (1984) Burt Reynolds and Dom DeLuise and a bunch more familiar faces from the original Cannonball Run including Jamie Farr, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr. and Jackie Chan return to a second ridiculous car race movie. Adding to the mix for this one is Marilu Henner, Shirley MacLaine, Frank Sinatra, Catherine Bach, Susan Anton, Telly Salvalas, Tony Danza, and Richard Kiel.

This was actually pretty bad for the most part but it does hold a certain nostalgic flavour given its mix of stars and its very early 80s vibe.  It actually starts off pretty good and has a few decent gags here and there but veers off the rails a bit once Farr's Sheik character is kidnapped and the race is pretty much forgotten for too long a period of time. This really slows the film down to a snail's pace for a while but it does eventually get across the finish line in memorably silly fashion. Could have and should have been better given the talent involved but well, it's a slice of nostalgia for some of us anyways. *** out of ***** stars.
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« Reply #6401 on: June 09, 2013, 01:28:29 PM »

'Found Footage' Double Feature:

The Devil Inside (2012) ~ young woman wants to find out more about her mother, who has been put into an asylum in Rome, Italy after killing three members of the church during an exorcism back in 1989. She eventually meets her mom who appears to be possessed, making her act like she's mentally ill. With the help of two young priests the daughter arranges yet another exorcism, but the spirits possessing her mother can easily take over any other person just like that.
Infamous box office smash hit known as 'the movie with no ending.' I must admit the first 25-35 minutes are interesting and engaging, but once the freaky stuff happens slight boredom settles in. This was more unintentional funny on my first viewing back in October. 2.5/5

Apollo 18 (2011) ~ Hidden 1974 footage from a secret NASA mission to the moon surfaces 2011 on a website, and is put together as a (fake) documentary. Another case of "I enjoyed this more on my first viewing". Slow-burner without gravity and cliche-suspense that is not very suspenseful. I do dig the limited space setting, and the different types of "aged" footage spliced together. Detaching 1/2 star from my last year rating. 3/5
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« Reply #6402 on: June 10, 2013, 08:28:21 AM »

Dead Man Down (2013) Noomi Rapace and Colin Farrel lead in this rather complicated revenge tale from earlier this year. It's a bit too convoluted for it's one good and I spent most of the running time unsure of why characters were doing what they were doing which can be frustrating. Both leads are strong individually but the romance subplot is not as convincing as it should be. It's not all bad though it's very stylishly directed and the action set pieces (of which there is less than the trailer would have you believe) are really strong especially one at the end which is rather fantastic. I certainly don't regret missing this in theater but it's a perfectly fine choice for rental or streaming.

Uninvited (1988) I haven't seen a b movie that really blew me away in quite a while but this ludicrous creature feature more than delivered the goods. Basically this is a movie about a monster cat that hides within a normal cat and terrorizes cokehead's on a yacht. We never see them do cocaine but I can assure you drugs were heavily involved in every stage of this films production. Of note is the atrocious soundtrack, constantly fluctuating size of the monster cat, and incredible acting of the entire cast. Punctuated by impromptu dance sessions this film delivers all the b movie delight one could hope for. Highly Recommended!
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JaseSF
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« Reply #6403 on: June 10, 2013, 05:25:06 PM »

The Barefoot Executive (1971): Enjoyable Disney film from the early 70s starring a young Kurt Russell and a monkey named Raffles with the unique talent of picking those television shows which will prove most popular with the public. Naturally Russell secretly uses the chimp's secret talent to help him move from mailroom clerk up the corporate ladder at the television industry studio for UBC only for his higher-ups, fearing for their jobs, to seek his undoing.

While it takes a little while to get going, this delivers some laugh-out loud moments once it really takes off especially when the villains attempt to abduct the chimp.  Joe Flynn, Harry Morgan and John Ritter make for memorable villainous characters in this one with questionable intentions and questionable talent. Also memorable here is Wally Cox as a befuddled chauffeur who finds himself dragged into his boss Flynn's hijinks and of course Raffles the chimp himself. Perhaps a shade better than the usual shopping cart film from Disney. ***1/2 out of ***** stars.
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« Reply #6404 on: June 11, 2013, 10:45:57 PM »

Link (1986) - Elisabeth Shue was a huge star in the 80's but not because of this. The first half is terrible. A girl gets a job being some sort of assistant to a professor out in the English countryside. She plays with the monkeys a bit. That takes 45 minutes Hello I'm Busy here. at that point it turns into a pretty good if hard to fathom horror movie about a killer ape. There's a cool if wacky movie in here but they f'ed it up. 2.5/5
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