Saturday, October 31, 2009

Wait there's another tradition...Always check your candy.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Halloween has had many traditions over the years. Whether it is jack o lanterns, TPing someones house, or dressing up in costumes and getting candy there are many traditions for Halloween. We now have a new one...Trick R Treat.

Trick R Treat is the Direct to DVD movie done by long time screenplay writer Michael Dougherty based on a cartoon short film that he wrote and directed a while ago (see youtube clip). He both writes and directs this Halloween masterpiece and its produced by Brian Singer.

Trick R Treat is based around four different stories that all tie in together. Each are morbid and gory but at the same time sweet and funny. They are extremly well acted with actors such as Anna Paquin, Leslie Bibb, Dylan Baker and Brian Cox leading the way. The film is only 82 minutes but there is never a minute that goes by where it is boring. Each story is engrossing and very interesting with lots of eye opening twists that leave you scared and happy at the same time. It mixes the scares and the laughs quite well and its all tied together well in the end. I guess you could thank Sam for that. Sam is the kid on the poster and is featured in every story.

Trick R Treat is full of great surprises and for a lower budget direct to DVD movie its phenominal. It was supposed to come out two years ago but due to competition against Saw and other horror films, this one was pushed back and ultimately just shoved out to DVD. But its a great movie and an instant cult classic and a must watch for every Halloween. I will go as far to say its the best Direct to DVD movie Ive ever seen.



Ooh, I'm done! Brothers never make it out of situations like this! Not ever!

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it I will.

I hate sharks. I especially hate mutated Great Whites that have a huge blood lust. In Deep Blue Sea, directed by Renny Harlin (of Mindhunters) those fears come to a head.

The story of Deep Blue Sea revolves around a group of scientists trying to cure Alzheimer's disease by experimenting on sharks. They create three "mako" sharks and give them augmented brains so that they can have the brain capacity of a humans. Once they did that they would be able to harvest brain tissue and ulitmately use that brain tissue to cure Alzheimer's. They get a pretty good group of people consisting of shark wranglers, engineers, scientists, communications specialists and a wise cracking chef named Preacher. Needless to say all hell breaks loose and people start dying. So they send corporate executives to try and handle the situation. When that doesnt work and the sharks all get loose, its up to them to escape and reach the surface, or die.

The story is pretty formulatic and cheesy but has one great twist: When you think something good is about to happen they snap you back into reality. Take this scene for example:

Yes its funny and yes its cheesy (especially look at Jackson's face before he dies) but its kind of a "What the...? That usually never happens." moment and that is a pretty frequent trend in this film...especially with the ending. Let's just say you wont see it coming.

Tom Jane and LL Cool J are both great in this movie and are really one of the big redeeming values of this movie. Otherwise the acting is subpar. The tension and the thrills are good but nothing special

If you liked Jaws or shark films, or you just want a decent random thriller than watch this one.


Here we are. Crimetown USA. Where all the residents are dead... or about to be.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None is my favorite book I have ever read. Its deep with lots of twists and turns and is just a great read by a great author. Of course America would want to get ahold of this classic and turn it into a movie and they did just that. They followed the movie almost to a tee but changed the names of a few characters and most notoriously of all, changed the ending. And it was cheesy as none other. Over the years many adaptations have been made mimicking this story but only one film has ever succeeded with that and that film is Mindhunters.

Starring Christian Slater (stay with me), Val Kilmer, LL Cool J, and Kathryn Morris, this take on the old novel is both interesting and completly engrossing. The methods in which each person meets there fate is Rube Goldberg esque, very inventive, very tense and overall very well done.

The story revolves around a group of FBI profilers each with a different vice or complex that keeps them from being the best they can. They are given an assignment, a training mission of sorts, to profile a serial killer that doesnt exsist. The only problem is when one of there members dies and there boat explodes they realize they are trapped on the island and ONE OF THEM is the killer. What ensues is a great mix of mystery, thrills and suspense with extremly good performances from LL Cool J and Kathryn Morris.

Its not the best movie ever and it does have some slow parts and the ending, while exciting, is a bit predictable. Also Christian Slater and Val Kilmer are in it. Luckily they arent in long and so that nightmere ends quite quickly. But it is a pretty good movie and at least worth a look see. So if you like thrillers, murder mysteries or Agatha Christie than check this one out!


Friday, October 30, 2009

So, bending bullets. Can you do that? You do that... hello?

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Mark Millar is fairly well known in the comic universe as the creator of many great comic book series. He is responsible for the Ultimate (enter Marvel superhero) series, the Kick-Ass series and the one that this film is based on the Wanted series. Wanted focuses on Wesley, an assassin who has the ability to curve bullets as well as just being a damn good shot. Once a member of the evil Fraternity, now Wesley hunts down his foes and kills them without remorse. Known for its violence, language and sarcastic humor it has become a cult classic series among fans.

The movie is a loosely based rendition of Wesley's orgin story. It details Wesley (James McAvoy) before he was an assassin and was just a lowly office worker. Once Wesley starts to get hunted down by Cross, another assassin, Fox (played by Angelina Jolie) comes in to save him and whisks him away to the HQ of the Fraternity. Led by Sloan (Morgan Freeman) he recruits and trains Wesley into being able to unlock his true ability, curving bullets. Lots of killings, slow motion scenes, and action ensues.

Its part Matrix, part Star Wars, part every action movie ever made, but together its a great and well made film. The special effects, sound design and all that is phenominal and extremly well done. The acting is great with McAvoy and Jolie really shining but Freeman (as per usual) stealing the show.

Its an extremly smart and action packed movie and is definetly one of the better action films ever made. So if you enjoy McAvoy, Jolie (naked), smart writing or lots of action than this is the movie for you.


Halloween special-Horror Movie Franchise overview "Friday the 13th"

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

This is a special Halloween edition of the movie encyclopedia. Today I will be reviewing the entire Friday the 13th series in one giant review. The way I see it is that most of these movies are carbon copies of each other and thusly dont ACTUALLY deserve their own seperate reviews (save Jason X since its really out there). So after putting up the DVD cover of the entire series box set (above) I shall now delve into each of the friday the 13th's one by one and tell you which ones are worth watching and which ones you should just skip.

You see, Jason was my son and today was his birthday... (1980)

The film that started it all the original Friday the 13th was really a site to behold. It was the series (in my opinion) that reinvented the horror genre and revolutionized the term slasher film. It was creepy, atmospheric and it was the first time we were introduced to the signature CH CH CH AH AH AH KUH KUH KUH noise we heard whenever "Jason" was stalking someone. It had subpar acting but the kills were inventive, creative, genuinely scary, showed great special effects of its time and were fun to watch. The twist ending, both of them, were fun and truly threw me for a loop.

Its the best film in the series and a really revolutionary horror film. And Kevin Bacon gets killed.


I told the others, they didn't believe me! You're all doomed! (1981)

Friday the 13th part 2 is the second part of this long running series and while it doesn't have the twists and turns of the original one it is still quite interesting.

The kills are inventive and it is the debut of Jason Vorahees himself. This is the tipping point of the series as after this movie the series starts to get worse and worse. But overall it is still a pretty good film and worth checking out if only to see what happens to the survivor from the first one.


No! You can't be alive! (1982)

You know a movie series has gone bad when they resort to 3-D to sell a movie. Jaws, Final Destination and even the next Saw movie. But one of the few times where although cheesy, 3-D works, is in Friday the 13th part 3. Its nowhere near the calibur of the first two of the series and it does rely heavily on the 3-D aspect, it is still an enjoyable film and its kind of cool to see the effects nowadays since they were done so long ago. The ending to 3 is almost a direct rip off of the first one but in a ways its also just as terrifying since Jason AND his mom are in it. Even though it turns out to be a dream its still cool.

So if you like the old school 3-D effects or just want to see probably the last good...strike that...THE LAST good Friday the 13th than you should watch this one. Its kind of a guilty pleasure film


He thinks that's funny. He thinks that's a funny thing he's doing (1984)

MAN...this is one of the most notoriously bad horror films ever made. First off you got Crispin Glover (of Charlie's Angels and Beowulf fame) and Corey Feldman in the same movie together. Thats like the old school combination of Christian Slater and Stephen Dorff...two bad actors in an equally bad movie. The plot is thin and abysmal and filled with holes the size of a ravine. Yeah the kills are mildly interesting but get stale after a while and seeing a bald Feldman hacking up a deformed Jason while some crazy girl screams for five minutes is both amusing and completly mind numbingly annoying. This was supposedly "THE FINAL CHAPTER" but that wasn't gonna happen so we are stuck with this and the next suck fest of Friday the 13th...YAY


It's....SHOWTIME!! (1985)

This is not only one of the most confusing of the series it is also the most unnecessarily gory, lacks any true coherant story, the killer is a scared delusional wimp and there is no true Jason Vorahees in this movie. The sad thing is you know it too. Its just a dumb movie from to beggining to end and lacks any real direction, point and is nothing but a shameless cash in on an already dying series.

I've seen enough horror movies to know any weirdo wearing a mask is never friendly (1986)

Jason lives, famous for its first use of Vorahees as a superhuman being with regenerative powers, superhuman strength and other inhuman things, is actually a really great entry into the series. It knows the past two films before it were complete crap and in a really good twist of fate it doesnt decide to take itself seriously.

The characters are genuinely funny, the lines are great, the deaths are both funny and creative and its just an enjoyable entry into the series. Not a good one earlier standards but at least worth a rent.


OK you big HUNK of a man...come get me (1988)

Part 7 in the series is actually really memorable to me and is one of the three I actually most vividly remember. Gone is the Tommy Jarvis story with him being sane, insane, sane and in comes Tina, a telekenetic who accidently kills her father and unleashes Jason. Its cool to see Tina struggle to control her powers and the person who plays Tina is actually really good.

The kills in this one seem more simple than in others but at the same time they are also quite interesting. In fact one kill from this movie is mimicked in other horror movies and even mimicked and redone in Jason X. Its the sleeping bag kill

Part seven also introduces Kane Hodder who has actually become best known as Jason Vorahees. He debuted in this movie and played Jason all the way until Jason X. He is the most loved by fans and always goes to conventions.
One other thing this movie had going for it was an awesome showdown scene between Tina and Jason.

It also had an ending that no one expected. Overall the third best film in the series.



Oh this one...let me just say is so bad its good. It has some of the most unique kills and one of the weirdest death scenes in the history of the series. WHO BOXES JASON? It also debuts the idea of taking Jason out of the forrest and into the streets. Its cheesy, its dumb, its campy and it mostly takes place on a boat. But its not an abomination and the deaths are pretty cool. I still wouldnt reccomend it because all the cool stuff I just posted in the video above.


I'll have a Vorahees burger with a side of Jason fingers (1993)

There you just saw the only good part...just saved you an hour and a half.

Despite the cool Freddy ending this is one of the most bizzare entries in the series. It starts off cool with Jason getting blown to pieces but than the whole Jason's heart possesing people to kill people is bizzare and poorly done. Its really a waste of film and besides that Freddy vs Jason tease its really just a boring film. The kills are dull and dumb and its just blah...dont see this one


Well everyone that oughta do it. The Michael Bay one will have its own review and Jason X and Freddy vs Jason are already reviewed so there ya go. The whole series.

This is your receipt for your husband... and this is my receipt for your receipt.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Terry Gilliam was amazing in Monty Python. He was hillarious, imaginative and always entertaining. As a director he is an artistic genious creating some of the greatest cult classics of all time. That Python esque humor is there as well as the Python style but Gilliam has shown that his brilliance is truly hard to define.

You need proof? Look no furthur than Gilliam's telling of George Orwell's classic 1984 with a twist...BRAZIL.

Part dark comedy, part thriller and all sci fi goodness, Gilliam's Brazil mixes the elements and the overall story of 1984 but with brighter colors and Gilliam's take on style.

The basic story revolves around Sam Lowry, played by Jonathan Pryce (of Pirates of the Carribean, My Zinc Bed and plenty other films). Pryce has the serious everyman look to him but he is both witty and darkly funny in this film. His character alone is brilliant to watch as he transforms through the films entirety. Lowry is a government official who dreams of bigger and better things, like beautiful maidens or being able to fly. Because of a spelling error Lowry ends up in contact with Jill and renowned terrorist and air conditioner specialist Harry Tuttle.

Tuttle is played by Robert you didnt hear me wrong. Although his part is short in the movie DeNiro is brilliant and quite fun to watch, considering a lot of the other serious movies he does. Kim Greist plays Jill and she does quite well for herself. That seems to be an overarching theme in this movie...brilliant and well done acting. If Kim Greist is unfamiliar to you than see Manhunter...the film Red Dragon remade. Michael Palin (of Python fame) is even in this movie and does fantastically.

I dont really want to reveal too much else of the plot but its definetly Orwellian and does the book justice. The last minutes are both disturbing and quite funny, something this movie does well.

The art style, the deep underlying themes, the brilliant acting and the wonderful dialogue (written partially by Gilliam himself) makes this a great cult classic, highly enjoyable and a film you must own.


Oh, wouldn't it be great if I *was* crazy? Then the world would be okay

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Do you ever wish you could change the past? Do you ever want to know what the future holds for you? How would things be different if you changed everything? Well Terry Gilliam, of Monty Python fame as well as great films like Brazil, answers that question and more in his great sci fi thriller 12 Monkeys.

Inspired by the black and white short film La Jetee this thriller takes place in a post apocolyptic society where convicted criminal James (Bruce Willis in a great role) is given a chance at freedom if he goes into the past and prevents the virus that caused the apocolypse from happening. Meanwhile he is having these horrible nightmeres of a shooting in an airport. He is first transported into 1990 where he meets Jeffery Goines, the best and most twisted character in the movie. He is young, brash, smart but at the same time completly looney tunes. And who better to play him than Brad Pitt. Pitt is absolutly amazing in this film and really should have earned an Oscar for this role for which he lost to Kevin Spacey.

The themes of memory, time travel and technology are all quite fascinating and thought provoking. The most interesting thing is the cinematic allusions tied to the Hitchcock masterpiece Vertigo. Twelve Monkeys almost feels Hitchcockian in its own way. Its a brilliant film anyway.

This is a great sci fi classic and a definite must see. Do yourself a favor and pick this one up.


Even if you leave this room, you can never leave this room!

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

I have always been a huge fan of Stephen King. His books are imaginative, genuinely terrifying and thought provoking and can also be really sweet and tender. He is a very diverse and outspoken author and his books have made great movies. The Shining is a cinematic masterpiece, Shawshank Redemption is touching and sweet, It makes me even more scared of clowns and Misery is brilliant.

So it came as surprise to me when they announced that one of the more memorable stories in Stephen King's short stories classic Everything's Eventual would be made into a movie. Now while I wish some of the other stories would be made into movies I do have to say that 1408 was a great story.

It was a really brief but very effective story. Mike Enslin is a horror author who writes stories about haunted houses, castles and the like. His new fascination is with a mysterious hotel room at the Dolphin Hotel. Legend has it that room 1408 is cursed and has caused the deaths of many of its visitors. This intrigues Enslin and he decides he wants to stay there. Against Mr. Olin, the managers, wishes he stays there anyway and it is the most disturbing hour of his life.

This story carries over well into the film with John Cusack performing a great almost one man show. He is moody, intellegent and brings a good life to the character. Samuel L Jackson does okay as Olin but I probably would have cast someone else. Jackson's Olin is a little too in your face compared to the soft spoken Olin of the book.

Considering it was only a 25-30 page story the film had to make up a lot to keep it interesting. The hotel scene itself, consisting of what occurs in the hotel room, is consistent with the story and ads some pretty interesting elements. Some of the side stories in the film are unnecessary but overall the film delivers well.

While not the most true adaptation of a King novel it does a good job and is pretty interesting. If you like King's stories or are a fan of good thrillers than give this a watch.


These are my children, Jason. Go back to where you belong.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Mash up films are a fans dream. Seeing there favorite heroes or villians team up is great and always delivers some interesting parallels and story ideas. One such of these mash up films is 2003's Freddy vs Jason, combining two of the most prolific killers in horror movie history. Explaining what happens after Friday the 13th part 9 (Freddy's hand popping up and grabbing Jason's mask) and before New Nightmere and Jason X, Freddy vs Jason is a cheesy but entertaining mash up film that fares much better than later mash ups that happen (AvP)

The story of the people doesnt really matter. The people are just fodder and there only to be killed off. You are supposed to sympathize with this one girl but like most horror movies you just dont care about them and want to get to the action. The action is immediate as we see Jason killing yet another camper. The twist however is Freddy comes in and strikes a deal with Vorahees. Vorahees isnt that bright and is mostly there to walk, stab, repeat so he happily agrees not knowing that every kill he now does will only make Freddy stronger.

We then see Freddy and Jason play a game of one up as they kill off more and more fodder. In a strange twist however Jason actually becomes the hero of this movie doing all he can to try and stop, and ultimately kill, Freddy. Yeah Jason kills fodder even after this turn but his focus is on Freddy.

The final confrontation is satisfying and fun to watch. Its great to watch there back and forth and ultimately who is the winner. Yeah the fodder "win" in the end but one of them gets a sure victory (or does he!!?) in the end.

Overall its probably one of the better mash up films and is always quite entertaining. So give this one a look see.


Guys, it's okay! He just wanted his machete back!

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

I think the only reason I'm not including this one in the "Horror movie franchise" overview of Friday the 13th is that this is a completly different approach to the Jason Vorahees driven series than the other parts of the series. It mixes the usual slasher formula that we are used to seeing but unlike the other movies in the series and probably unlike other horror franchises, this one takes the joke "(Insert horror franchise) IN SPACE!" seriously as this is:


Except instead of just saying that which would have made this movie a lot more awesome (it tellse you what it is right in the title) this one just screws with the continuity of the series and calls itself Jason X. Maybe its to make him sound Xtreme or maybe because it IS the 10th movie, but either way its definetly something to behold.

Its not a good movie. We all know that. After the first two in the series the Friday the 13th films have been horrible, cheesy messes. While the 2009 version is actually kind of cool, its still in comparison to other movies..horrible. And thats fine! You dont go into a Friday the 13th movie expecting Citizen Kane. You go in expecting a slasher film where a bunch of idiots get killed.

The "story" of Jason X is that Jason gets cryogenically frozen and wakes up in the future and kills people on a spaceship. If you really expected more than a sentance from me than you are sadly mistaken. The acting is laughable and the dialogue is groan worthy. The kills are inventive if not for the sheer reason they are in space. If you must know what they are here they are! "Bodies" by Drowning Pool

There ya go. Thats probably what you wanted to see from this film anyway.

But if you go into this with the right mindset this is actually one of the better films in the series. So if you are on a Vorahees binge than you can do worse than this one

MY VERDICT: AVOID IT (I say this kindly though)

As my father always says, "na zdrowie!", to your health!

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

For some reason this movie just HAD to come out. You couldnt just leave the ending to the first one ambiguous you had to tell us EXACTLY what happened at the end of the first one. You even had to go and retell everything that happened in the first one. You then even had the gall to put Roger Bart in this movie in a role where he was really good but that was probably the only thing good about this movie.

I really hate the Hostel series. And dont try to persuade me otherwise. I HAVE watched these movies, no I do not have a weak stomach (Hello devout Saw fan) and I do GET it. I understand what this movie is trying to do. Its trying to show human brutality and how messed up we are as people. I understand its showing brutality in a way no film has dared to before. I get it. But when you make a movie that makes the entire Saw series look like Citizen Kane times six than you have a problem.

First off for a horror film there is an extreme lack of horror. There are NO scares in this movie, no cheap cheesy scares, no reveal scares, no jump scares and no music sting scares. There is nothing scary about this movie. The torture scenes are extremly brief and dont provide anything that is really disturbing or scary. They are cheesy, weak and rely on "how much blood can we put in a scene before its scary" tactics. This movie is actually quite boring. I dont care about any of the characters (except Roger Bart but Ill get to that) and there is nothing redeemable about anybody. When they die you actually say Good they Deserved It. I mean its just basically a boring travel sex comedy with the last 25 minutes being a snuff film. Its just not good.

Honestly the only thing that makes this movie even a little redeemable is Roger Bart. He plays Stuart, a family man who throughout the movie is trying to figure out whether he should go through with the killing. His friend is adamant, cocky and excited but Stuart is brooding and mopey. He struggles with his moral choices through this whole movie and you can see it. Its not until 20 minutes are left when you see a genuine Dr. Jekyl Mr Hyde kind of switcheroo and it is really freaky to see. Maybe its just because he is a great actor. But sadly he isnt in the movie for THAT long and you are really forced to see the slut, the brainy nerd and the rich girl run around Slovakia all day long.

I honestly think this movie shouldnt have been made. The first one shouldnt have been made either. But these movies were and with Halloween approaching I bet people are going to want to watch these now more than ever. All I can say is:


I don't want a drink. I want to see some art! Now, can we go?

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

...This movie just sucks. I cant put it any other way. Its a giant tease that leads up to one kind of creepy moment and then a sucky tacked on unrealistic ending. Jay Hernandez provides some mediocre acting but everyone else's performance is weak, stiff and just not interesting.

Dont go into this movie thinking you will get the Saw-esque torture porn like horror film that this movie was sold as. It starts off almost promising with the credits showing blood stained walls and dark corridors while a man whistles a happy tune. But then we see a bright Amsterdam and three budies walking around. I had to check what I was watching to make sure I didnt switch to something else. But maybe this would go by quick and we'd get to what BRAVO called the scariest movie of all time. But then they started smoking pot, having sex, riding trains, getting drunk and walking around talking about the aformentioned things. And this goes on for 40 minutes. 40 out of the 90 minutes!! It feels more like a sex comedy in Germany than a horror movie. Its not until we see the famous achilles heel slashing scene from minute 41 to 46 that it starts to look like the real thing. Than it goes away until an hour and ten minutes when Hernandez's character Paxton is taken to the "factory". His "torture scene" lasts all of a few minutes with most of it being a long speech in german to his potential killer and then he just escapes. Yeah he gets chased and hunted down but he escapes scott free.


The ending is okay but okay shouldnt come with five minutes left in the movie! I mean its kind of cool the killer gets his just deserts but puh lease FIVE MINUTES LEFT?! Come on. Then he hops the train and the credits role.

This movie is just a huge letdown and a huge waste of my time. I really wish I had that hour and a half movie sucks.


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Step away from the meat.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Clive Barker is one of the most renowned horror and fantasy writers of our time. Along with Stephen King, Clive Barker put true horror novels out in the front line and made them really popular. These godfathers of the modern horror novels were great at what they did so it was obvious that a lot of their works would be made into movies. While Stephen King's films have been met with great praise, a lot have also been met with horrible and mediocre reviews. Barker however, besides the cult classic Hellraiser, has had trouble with reviews. But in 2008 Clive Barker, Japanese superstar Ryuhei Kitamura and Jeff Buhler set out to remake one of Barkers short stories known as The Midnight Meat Train.

From the title alone and looking at the cover you can tell this movie has gore on the mind. And it does, a lot of it. Except unlike other horror/slasher films this one has an art to it. Maybe that sounds dark but this film is done and shot extremly well. The visual effects of the subway, the slow motion effects of one murder and another murder from the victims point of view and every camera shot and angle is used to great effect. Its use of deep focus, racked zooming and quick camera reveals all feel natural, never forced and are truly frightening.

From the first five minutes this film makes its point clear: A man is walking on a subway and slips. When he gets up he is covered in blood. There are more gallons of blood in this movie than I have seen in a long time. It makes Saw 1-6 and both Hostels look like a shot glass of blood. Its that Japanese style set in an American setting. And it works unusually well.

The acting is something that also blew me away. Vinnie Jones, an ex football player turned actor is truly unnerving. He never speaks except for one word and the occasional grunt. He is a real person, not some creep in a mask and that truly makes it more frightening. His eyes are cold and dull, his walk is slow and steady, he is able to give a truly terrifying and humbling performance without saying a word. In an odd casting choice that I didnt see coming Bradley Cooper plays Leon, the main character. Cooper is a truly underrated actor. This is his first true horror film with his only other thriller role being My Little Eye (his second film). He is a comic genius and the perfect sidekick but he is REALLY good at the serious. You really feel for his character in this movie and he really brings a sense of being in his shoes in the movie. He draws you in and pulls at you never letting you go. What he sees, you see. He is absolutly brilliant in this role. Leslie Bibb, who plays Maya (Leon's fiancee), isnt as good as Cooper and Jones but she does well with what she has. She is never the dumb damsel in distress and she compliments Cooper well. Roger Bart, who plays Jurgis (Leons friend) does well but feels more like a bit part then an actual character. He is good but how good can you be if you are only in the film for a few minutes. The same goes for an unexpected cameo from Brooke Shields who plays a famous art dealer. She plays snooty well but I can count on one hand how long she is in the movie for so its hard to judge her.

The story itself is simple but gets complicated quick. Leon is a photographer trying to make it big. While shooting at night he saves a young model who then dissapears the next day. Leon investigates and learns about "The Butcher."

Its a truly breathtaking movie. It is a breath of fresh air in an unusually stale genre. It will change your mind on how horror movies should be made and how they should be handled. It is definetly in my top 4 for scariest film of the decade and it truly is mind blowing. If you have a weak stomach than stay away from this movie. Otherwise it is a great watch for Halloween or any time of the year. This is a definite cult classic in the making.


Monday, October 26, 2009

Take car. Go to Mum's. Kill Phil, grab Liz, go to the Winchester, have a nice cold pint, and wait for all of this to blow over!

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Shaun of the Dead was my favorite film of all time until The Hurt Locker came out. To me though it will always be in the top 3 no matter what other movies may come out. It is quite honestly the best comedy ever made and one of the greatest homage's of all time. I have watched this movie over 40 times and every time I watch it, it is still hillarious, still witty, still funny and a brilliant piece of film.

Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright wrote this movie which would become the first in the Blood and Cornlato trilogy (the second being Hot Fuzz). While Wright directed, Pegg, along with his buddies from their TV show Spaced (great show) starred in this romance zombie comedy...otherwise known as the romzomcom.

Shaun of the Dead is about Shaun and Ed, two roommates who love to do nothing except drink, eat ice cream, play TimeSplitters 2 and hang out at their favorite pub, The Winchester. Ed is a slob and a slacker whose only job is selling weed over the phone. Shaun however has a little bit of a better life, he has a girlfriend Liz, he's close with his mum and he works at an electronics store. Granted all three of these have their bumps: Liz hates him, he has an estranged relationship with his step dad and everyone at his job is a jerk, but he gets through life everyday trying to make the best of it. One day he writes on his planner "Get a Piece of fried gold" (make something great happen) and he falls asleep. The next day, zombies overrun London and its up to Shaun and Ed to save everyone they love.

Its a superbly written film with lines taken from every horror film of the last 20 years and plenty of original jokes that are still after so many viewings laugh out loud funny and the cast is perfect. Everyone is remarkable, rememberable and I find myself quoting this movie every day at least once. It is the modern day Monty Python and The Holy Grail. It is the best British film to come out since Holy Grail. Its just a remarkable film.

Its really hard to describe this film unless you watch it. Its one of those films you need to watch to truly understand. Dont listen to my review or any one elses review. Just go down to the store, pick it up and watch it. You will not be dissapointed. Once you watch it you will realize that words can not describe how great this film is. From the first minute to the last minute it is a work of sheer comic genius.

Please see this movie. If you havent than there is something wrong with you.


There are few places hard to get to in this world. But there aren't any where it's harder to live.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

I love cute animals. I mean who doesnt? So it was no surprise that when March of the Penguins came out that everyone (including me) went rushing to the theatre to see it. And what did we get? Penguins...walking...and standing. While that may sound boring to just about anybody you have to factor in the greatest thing about this movie: Morgan Freeman. Yes the voice of God is in this movie and he narrates this movie, personifies the penguins, gives them struggles, and ultimatley makes this movie a real movie instead of just penguins waddling around.

The plot is a bit scarce in explaining but great in execution. The emporer penguin likes to breed in one spot. They breed in that one spot because its solid ice, not mushy, not slippery just solid. It makes it easier on the babies. The only problem is that its 100 Kilometers away from where they usually are aka near open water. So every year they "march" the 100 km to the spot and breed. The daddy stays behind to watch the baby and the mom goes hunting for food. After the babies have grown up enough they march all the way back to they were and the cycle starts over.

Hopefully that was a learning experience for ya!

Freeman does a great job of giving the penguins a sense of identity. He really gives a sense of identity to each of the different penguins and keeps the movie interesting. Ultimately what it comes down to though is if you like documentaries or not. If you like a lot of action and things blowing up than this is certainly not a film for you. But if you like Morgan Freeman, cute animals or want to learn about penguins than see this film.


A week ago, the only thing I thought was out of the ordinary was that it was my birthday.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

I guess there is a time in every beloved comedians life that he goes through a "serious" phase. Not like pull a Robin Williams and do Dead Poets Society or something but more along the lines of going out of your way to be as unlike yourself as possible. Nobody, it seems, did this as badly as Jim Carey. His first film Eternal Sunshine was actually pretty good. Not my favorite film but definetly a good step for him. Then he shot himself in the foot with the Number 23.

The number 23 is about the fascination that comes around the nuumber 23 and a story about Walter, a man whose life ends up revolving around that number. Where this movie succeeds is by immersing us in this 23 enigma and it forces us to think about all the instances that involve that number. Where the movie also fails is the integration of Fingerling, the fictional character in the book that sparks Walter's obsession. The Fingerling scenes are gross, way over the top, and is essentially Jim Carey TRYING TOO HARD. Without those scenes it would have just been an okay movie.

You know this film has no real gripes from me. The acting is okay, the story (albiet weird) is okay...actually everything about this movie is okay. Its just subpar. Its a half-assed attempt at a subject that could actually have been done really well. I dont blame Jim Carey for this movie being bad more than I blame the writers for basically giving up halfway into the movie.

If you love this movie and the enigma that goes with it I really doubt this review will change that but to people who may have been interested in it, give it a pass.


Charlotte has pudding in her Prada.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it I will.

Before I even review this I have a few things to say.
1. I am NOT a fan of Sex and the City and have never watched a single episode
2.I am NOT looking forward to the sequel because I will be dragged to it too
3.If you ARE a fan than my review doesnt matter anyway.

Seeing this movie was an experience. I was the only straight guy in the entire theatre. No couples with boyfriends getting dragged along, nope I was the only straight guy. I was also probably one of six guys altogether. The rest of the theatre was packed with women. And when the film started I heard the little decrescendo that starts the theme I heard a scream so loud I thought I was at a Jonas Brothers with the cast of Twilight, Hannah Montana, iCarley and Stephanie Meyer concert. My eardrums were almost shattered. And when each friend was announced the shriek got louder. It almost sent me into cardiac arrest it was so loud. But once the screams stopped and I regained hearing I got to watch the chick flick to see of the year.

If you dont know the plot of this movie going into it than you are probably a guy, dont have HBO, dont have a girlfriend, or just dont care about this show. That being said I never really understood the plot besides the bare minimum. Four friends in New York. Thats it

The opening segment actually does a great job of giving an overview of the series and it really keeps everything easy to understand. Whether you never watched or are a die hard fan it will be simple and easy to understand.

Basically though the movie revolves around Carrie and Big getting married, Charlotte having a kid, Miranda having marital problems and Samantha being a cougar. And in 151 minutes they are able to explain all of these stories, how they intertwine and what ends up happening quite well.

Its definetly a long movie, a definetly a chick flick but as a standalone movie its not half bad. Its not great and it certainly doesnt make me want to watch an episode but its a pretty good starter guide and its a pretty decent movie. But if you are a guy than please watch this alone...your ears will thank me.


He is the sweetest guy. Have you ever looked into his eyes? It was like the first time I heard the Beatles.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it I will.

Judd Apatow is a name that is hard to miss nowadays. Whether he writes the movie, directs the movie or just produces the movie he has had a pivitol part in a good 80% of the commercially successful comedies that come out nowadays. He has at least defined what a 2000 and up dirty comedy is, pushing the boundaries and limitations of the R rating. He has also made the careers of many comedy superstars and is an essential part of todays Hollywood.

One of the biggest films he ever had his hands on is still considered one of the best by a lot of people. It mixed raunchy humor, unforgettable characters, a great coming of age story (although it totally rips off American Graffiti) and truly pushes the boundaries in terms of what you can say in a film.

Superbad is about three friends in their senior year about to graduate and head off to college. One, Seth(Jonah Hill), is a foul mouthed fat kid with an obsession. An obsession with good porn and getting laid. But underneath that sex driven man is a bit of a wimp who doesnt own up to any of his problems. His best friend is Evan(Michael Cera) a quiet nerdy kid who just wants a relationship. Specifically he wants a relationship with the girl of his dreams Becca who just kind of ignores him. The third and final friend is Fogell. Fogell is a super nerd with a super sex drive. He happens to get a fake id and renamed himself McLovin. Using that id and with the pretense that they will be popular if they do it, Seth, Evan, and Fogell all go on a quest to buy alcohol for the big senior party. From their chaos ensues.

Its a hillarious movies with a lot of nonstop humor and great lines. It certainly DOES push boundaries saying stuff that I never thought (at the time) could be said in a movie. But underneath the raunch is a really really sweet story of friendship and overcoming obstacles and learning to grow up.

Its not a film for everyone and I certainly know a lot of people who hate it. But I love this movie and it is still extremly funny to me even after all these years. So if you are in a mood to laugh a lot than this is the movie to see.


I'm just an actor with a gun who's lost his motivation

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.
The original RKO King Kong is regarded as one of the greatest classics of all time. Despite not aging the greatest (claymation and treadmill mattes) it was still a great feat back in the day and people still talk about that film and remember it fondly. In 2005 however Peter Jackson, fresh off his multi Academy Award winning Magnum Opus Lord of the Rings he set out to remake this classic film and give it more action, more suspense and just generally more umph. He did exactly that, but was it the right decision? Yes and no.
The first great thing about this movie is the cast. Adrian Brody and Naomi Watts are phenominal in the movie with Watts having to take on the iconic role of Ann Darrow played by the great Fay Wray. She can never outshine Wray but she does a great job nevertheless. Brody plays Jack Driscoll, one of the main heroes of our story who was originally played by Bruce Cabot. He actually in my opinion outshines Cabot in this film and really plays the hero well. The oddest switch up though is the character of Carl Denham. In the original he was sympathetic, a risk taker but never put people in danger. In fact in Son of Kong he returns and says he is remoresful for what happened to Kong. Robert Armstrong was great in this role. In the remake however he is played as a con artist, willing to do anything to anyone to get his way. He is devious, callous and a jerk overall. And he is played by Jack Black. Im not saying Jack Black is bad in this movie, in fact he does quite well, its just really interesting seeing how he acts in this film. Its almost like watching Kong himself.
The second great thing is the visual effect and the sound effects (which is no surprise than why it won 3 Academy Awards for those specific things). Its all so well done and Kong himself looks, feels and acts like a real ape. Its a sight to behold and a true evolution of film effects.
The biggest and most detrimental thing to this movie (which is why it doesnt have a Top 20) is the length. Its unneccesarily long and it really just pushed the boundaries for how long I wanted to stay in the theatre. There are so many great scenes but there is just as much filler. Filler that could have been cut out. The film is 200 minutes long! 200 MINUTES. Let that sink in. Do you really want to see a movie that is that long? Even if its great? NO. The original was only 105 minutes long. It is 95 minutes longer than the original. That is just insane. So that is why if you really want to see it, you need to see it at home and with a lot of breaks.
Its a great film and a really well made film. It stands out as one of 2005's best and it shows off a true evolution of film. But at 200 minutes long it really hurts the film and does more harm than good. Its still a great movie, but be ready to take breaks.

My Name Name is Astro

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Astro Boy has been around for many many years. Its had a few reboots, cartoons, toys, collectables, comics, its still to this day huge in Japan and to alot of people in the US. When they announced they were making a kids movie (essentially) based on the beloved character a lot of people were skeptical. It was too colorful, it took too many liberties with the story and to alot of people killed Astro Boy. Now I was never a huge fan of the original series or any of its reboots, and to this day most Japanese cartoon remakes kind of suck (Speed Racer anyone?) but this one wasnt THAT bad. I mean its by no means a great film or even that much of a good film but for kids it will be great.

Astro Boy takes place in Metro City (not in the show...oh boy i smell "loosely based") and is about Toby (played by Freddy Highmore of Charlie and the chocolate factory fame) and his dad the famous robot scientist Dr. Tenma (Nick Cage...actually decent). One day Dr. Elefun (Bill Nighy AWESOME) invents a pure energy source and the president (Donald Sutherland WOW) wants to use it for his new military weapon the "Peacekeeper" so he could use it as a political advantage for the upcoming election (subtle guys. War references? This is a kids movie). When Toby is killed in an accident, Tenma makes a robot that looks, talks, and has all the memories of Toby. And thats where Astro comes into play.

Its a bright and colorful film that kids will eat up. Other actors like Samuel L Jackson, Nathan Lane, Eugene Levy, Charlize Theron and Kristen Bell fill out the rest of the roster. To any film buff this is like a dream list and besides the kid friendly puns and jokes the whole cast is great.

Where this film fails is the plot. Characters seem odd and oddly motivated. There are plot holes big enough to drive trucks through it, continuity is off, and overall the plot is weak and full of political overtones. Maybe if more attention had been paid to the writing instead of the star power and look this film could have been great.

As it stands its a decent kids movie that does NO justice to the original cartoon. If you are a diehard fan disregard my score. But if you want to see a well acted but badly written kids movie with flashy colors and lots of action than please see this.


You look like a radioactive tampon.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

I enjoy sci fi movies a lot. Sci Fi Films give a sense of wonderment and plenty of what if scenarios. They have sprouted many devout followers and the really good ones are timeless masterpieces. Recently however most sci fi films have either been epic action films (Transformers, Star Trek) or just full of unnecessary gore (Alien vs Predator, most indie alien films). While I have no problem with the former (in fact I quite enjoy them...for the most part) the latter has seemed to dominate the sci fi genre...even going as far as defining it. But films like Surrogates have given me hope that the subtle, message driven sci fi of the past, full of moody atmosphere and claustrophobia (like 2001 or Alien) or great What if scenarios (Surrogates) that maybe the sci fi genre will bounce back deeper than ever.

Moon is one of those films. Filmed by David Bowie's son Duncan Jones (first time director) this Sam Rockwell vehicle film is great in its subtlety. There are only 8 actors in the film but you only really see (up close at least) 2 1/2 of them. This gives a great opportunity to show off Sam Rockwell's extremly underused talent as well as showcase Kevin Spacey's haunting voice (he is GERTY the computer of the ship)

Moon (without giving any plot away) is about Sam Bell(Rockwell), an astronaut in space who is stationed on the Moon to harvest H3, which has become the main energy source on Earth. He is contracted for 3 years and as the movie starts he only has a few weeks left. His only company is the computer GERTY(Spacey) who talks to and takes care of him on the ship. But in those last three weeks things get complicated.

Its a great film with many chilling twists that make you think of how close we are to it being a reality. Rockwell and Spacey are phenominal considering its a one man (two if you count Spacey) show. Spacey is haunting, clever and channels his inner HAL great. Rockwell is great showing amazing range and emotional depth in his performance.

Its not a groundbreaking movie but for anyone who is a Rockwell fan or a fan of 2001: A Space Oddysey or those subtle sci fi's than this is the film for you. Even if you arent a sci fi fan i reccomend it wholeheartedly.


It's a Harvest Cake

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Sam Raimi is considered by many to be one of the great horror directors of our time. Along with Alfred Hitchcock and Wes Craven Sam Raimi has made quite a name for himself in the horror buisness. He is the creator of the Evil Dead franchise as well as Army of Darkness. All three of these movies are considered classics of the horror genre and are still being ripped off to this day. Raimi however stopped doing horror a while back and now has become re famous as the the man behind the Spider Man movie franchise. When Spider Man 3 tanked and was considered the WORST in the series, Raimi decided to take a step back and return to his roots in the horror genre with the film Drag Me to Hell. This was a great decision on his part as Drag Me to Hell has become an instant classics and is still one of the best reviewed movies of 2009.

Drag Me to Hell is a treat. Its campy, its gory, its cheesy...but it KNOWS it. Its not like Raimi has no money or anything (Spider Man 3 movie budget 258 million) but he decided to go with the old school approach to gore and special effects a la Evil Dead. And it is wonderful. The movie has some great scares, great laughs and is just really FUN to watch.

Alison Lohman (Matchstick Men) plays Christine (a role that once belonged to Ellen Page), a loan officer who has a great boyfriend (Justin Long) and a great life. But when a strange gypsy woman appears and she has to turn her down, she is cursed and given three days before she is DRAGGED TO HELL.

Its an amazingly well done movie with great acting and lots of entertaining moments. If you love horror films with great stories and thats lots of fun to watch than do yourself a favor and pick this one up.


Once you see death up close, then you know what the value of life is.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Let me just start off by saying WOW. OK? This was the most shocking film I have ever seen. I expected another dumb filler movie like Saw 4 and 5 (although 5 was better) when I went in to see this. What I got was a fully fleshed out story that can stand alone as its own film, the answers to every question I had in the series (except the big one which will be answered hopefully in 7) and ultimately this movie made the whole series come full circle. With the ending of this film they could have just ended the series and I would have been happy. But, since Tobin Bell (Jigsaw) is signed on to do at least seven movies (prompting the seventh movie to be the last), the series will continue, even if for one more film. But what I got to wonder is how do you top this movie? I can say without a doubt that this is the second best Saw movie in the series.

Saw 6 has a great stand alone story. Sure we have the continuation story with Strahm/Hoffman/Jill Tuck/ect. but the stand alone story is amazing! William works for a health insurance company. He enjoys, heck takes pride, in making sure people DONT get covered so that he can get as much in his paycheck as possible. But one day he is kidnapped and given 6o minutes by Jigsaw personally (no Billy just straight shot of him) to make him see that given the choice of who lives and dies is not as easy as it seems when he's working. Its an amazingly well written story (shocker) with a great and relevant political overtone that not even Michael Moore was able to grasp well in his last movie. It still has that little bit of cheese that all the saw films have but it is really quite a sight to behold that the writing in this is almost good enough to be a standalone film NOT in the saw series.

The acting is good as usual, better than some of the others, but Jill Tuck and John Kramer (Betsy Russell and Tobin Bell) really stand out both giving phenominal performances that which I hadnt seen before.

By this point you either love the saw series or hate them. If you love them this is a great entry to the series giving a great breath of fresh air and if you hate them then continue to do so.

But... (highlight the section)

seriously what can they do now? the only thing they can do in seven is have Jill kill Hoffman then herself. That would leave no one left and they can just end the series. But the cash cow will keep on mooin so that wont happen.


Sunday, October 25, 2009

I LOVE my babies. Why would I want to PUSH them away from me?

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

I happen to be a huge fan of the Office. I also happen to be a huge SNL fan. So you can probably guess my excitement when I heard John Krasinski and Maya Rudolph were going to be in a movie together. But when I heard, while having its share of laughs, that Away we Go was a drama I was a bit suspicious. I was also a bit suspicious when I heard it was rated R since both of these actors usually work clean and rely on facial expressions and body language instead of just language. And it was an indie film. So I definetly had my doubts about this "dramadey" Well I can tell you that Sam Mendes (of American Beauty and Revolutionary Road) and writing couple Dave Eggers and Vendela Vida have thrown away any doubts that I had.

Away we Go is a pretty simple story and in fact you learn the whole plot about ten minutes into it. Verona and Burt (Rudolph and Krasinski) are a couple about to have their first child. When they learn their only close family is moving away, they too decide to move away traveling round the country. While it sounds like a simple story (and they even cleverly put title cards like AWAY TO TUSCON) it has a lot of twists, turns, colorful characters and events that make them think about their lives. Its a road trip movie but with a lot more heart.

Krasinski and Rudolph blew me away. They, who are comedy legends in their right, show amazing dramatic depth in their performance. They dont push the boundaries into overdramatic, luckily, and instead rely on true talent that seems to come natural to them. And one thing thats nice is unlike a lot of other comedians who do dramas, they dont RELY on being serious. Its a ROAD TRIP movie. There a lot of laughs and funny things in the movie as well as a lot of great one liners but it ends up leaning toward a drama in the latter half of the film (which is why i labeled it a drama).

Its a real feel good movie that maybe abruptly ends for my taste. Then again an hour and a half seemed like a good length, not really pushing it and overstaying their welcome. Its a CUTE movie more than anything and it really does make you feel good watching it and is a good film for couples to watch.


Saturday, October 24, 2009

I don't really have a lot of time to wait

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Kristen Stewart has probably become best known as Bella Swan in Twilight but she has been acting for a while in many different roles. Probably one of best acted and most away from the norm was in a 2009 independant drama called the cake eaters.

The cake eaters has nothing to do with cake...not a single plot point and those words are never mentioned in the script. Im pretty sure its one of those ambiguous titles that makes you really think about what it means once youve seen it.

The cake eaters however IS about a mom. A mom and her husband and two kids, Guy and Beagle. But its not about the mom but what happens AFTER she dies. She is the catalyst for this whole movie. Beagle is shy and reserved...a bit of a mamas boy. Guy is a drifting muscian and Easy (the husband) has been having an affair with family friend Marg. But after she dies they all change. Beagle starts to fall in love with Georgia who has Frederick's Ataxia, a physical and neurological disorder.

Georgia is played by Stewart and its a very different performance for her. She has the walk, talk and feel of a crippled person but it never feels cliched and feels more natural than if some other actress would have done it. It is in my opinion a real stepping stone for Stewarts career.

The movie does have its cliches and it has a Napoleon Dynamite way of telling a story but the acting and writing, as well as a great debut performance for director Mary Stuart Masterson makes this a real feel good drama that is at least worth a look.


Friday, October 23, 2009

I'm not a cowboy, Pam... I'm a stuntman

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

When put together the Grindhouse series creates a unique experience that we in the now generation could never experience. Exploitation films shot in grainy 70s style film stock as well as "missing reels" and white outs are something of the past. Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino loved these kinds of film and thus set out to make a double feature 3 and a half hour experience known as GRINDHOUSE.

While Robert Rodriguez's film was a great mix of campiness, bad one liners, cheesy action and over the top gore to create an unforgettable film that is both entertaining as it is hillarious, Tarantino's film did not fare so well. Death Proof was Tarantino's addition to the series and luckily it was the second movie shown. Maybe my expectations were too high but after watching Planet Terror, this was bunk. And on its own it fails as a film. You know why I think that is? Tarantino was SO focused on his Magnum Opus Inglorious Basterds that he just threw in the towel on this one. Thats not to say this is an abomination to cinema it just lacks that usual Tarantino umph of sorts and relys on language and the gimmick of grindhouse more than anything else.

Death Proof is essentially Kurt Russell killing people with cars. And a lot of F bombs. Oh and there are three ladies, one of them being a DJ. Thats it.

Its the lack of plot that really gets me. Yeah planet terror wasnt deep but it wasnt just some stuntman wannabe killing people with his car while three F Bombing hookers (seriously I couldnt tell if they werent) driving around, drinking, buying cars and using them for stunt tricks. See I wouldnt have mind if it was just the stuntman wannabe killing plot, most slasher films get by with a lot less but the ladies plot is so convulsed and cheesy that it makes Planet terror look like Citizen Kane.

The last half an hour and especially the ending are just head scratchingly awful and the movie ends so abruptly that its like "Where is the rest of the movie?...seriously? This is it? What a waste of 90 minutes. Oh and the extended edition (130 minutes) is just as bad and all the extra time is just filler.

With the other grindhouse movie it isnt that bad. But by itself it proves to be nothing more than a Tarantino phone in. Ive seen plenty worse and maybe I just have odd tastes but I just dont reccomend this movie.


I'm gonna eat your brains and gain your knowledge.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

When put together the Grindhouse series creates a unique experience that we in the now generation could never experience. Exploitation films shot in grainy 70s style film stock as well as "missing reels" and white outs are something of the past. Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino loved these kinds of film and thus set out to make a double feature 3 and a half hour experience known as GRINDHOUSE.

Robert Rodriguez's entry Planet Terror is a sight to behold. To some it is a way over the top zombie action horror film but to others (myself included) it is one of the best movies to watch at a party where no one has seen it before. Its THE movie to make fun of. And Rodriguez did that on purpose. Planet Terror is very tounge-in-cheek with its humor, style and flair. Its darkly funny and is a great send back to the old zombie films of yore.

You know you have an interesting movie if there is:
A stripper with a machine gun leg
Revolver uppercuts
Zombies and alien mutations
a hillbilly with an obsession for BBQ

I mean its so cheesy and campy and roll your eyes while laughing bad! But it doesnt take itself seriously. If it would have even attempted serious this movie would have been an abomination to cinema five minutes into it. Instead we get a morbid comedy filled with one liners, great action, minibikes and a whole lot of awesome.

Out of the two grindhouse films this one is far surperior. Its definetly worth picking up and is especially worth picking up for the DVD extras. But if you like horror comedies, Robert Rodriguez or zombie movies that dont suck or arent terror inducing then please buy this movie and support a possible (but not likely) sequel. This movie was just too awesome for description haha.


Turn the right corner in Sin City and you can find anything... anything

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.
Franks Miller is a comic book legend. Known for his over the top designs and even more over the top writing nevertheless his graphic novels have definetly become an essential part of any comic book fans collection. And who wouldve guessed that his comics, specifically Sin City and 300, would become great movies? Well they certainly are great and since I already reviewed 300 its time to review my other favorite Frank Miller graphic novel turned film...Sin City. And who better to handle this film than Robert Rodriguez and Frank himself...with a little help from Tarantino.
Sin City is a large ensemble action drama consisting of many big name actors and actresses. Mickey Rourke, Clive Owen, Bruce Willis, Jessica Alba, Josh Hartnett, Rosario Dawsen and PLENTY more. It was like they took all of the great actors in 2005 that werent busy and shoved them into this film.
The first two things you will notice about this film is its style and the way it tells a story. Its style is something we havent seen since the days of noir and it even goes beyond that. Shot completly in black and white with red, blue and yellow this film is a marvel to the eyes. The hard black edges, the larger than life characters, everything in this movie is a sight worth seeing itself. The narrative style however is something that might throw people off. Its divided into chapters each dealing with a specific character usually. Most of the time their paths dont cross and so as a big picture it can seem confusing. But if you look at it just as it is from story to story than it is amazing.
The writing, the directing, the acting everything about this movie is a unique experience. The inner monologues are deep, never cheesy and very thoughtful. There are so many quoteable lines and remarkable scenes that you will remember every shot of film for years to come.
Its a movie that everyone should at least see once. Its deep, insightful, animated, well acted and just a kick ass movie.

Sometimes bad things happen to good people.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Do you have a fear of flying? A lot of people do and ever since 9/11 those fears have gotten bigger. I personally dont have a fear of flying more than I have the fear of what this movie is based on: sitting next to the WROOONNNGGG person on a flight. And Red Eye does this in a great, moody and well acted way.

Red Eye is basically the story of Lisa (played by Rachel McAdams) who is on her way home to Miami. She has a fear of flying and decides to take the Red Eye flight, thinking there will be less risk. While in the airport she meets Jackson Rippner (played by Cillian Murphy).

Before I go on let me just say that is the suckiest excuse for a villian name Ive seen in a while. Jackson Rippner? Jack the Ripper? I mean his name might as well have been Dr. Acula or Alucard Reficul. If the name didnt give away his evilness than his overall creepiness as well as that smile certainly would do the trick.

Anyway...Lisa gets on the flight, sits down next to Rippner and she learns, once they get in the air, that he is evil.

Its a pretty good tension filled thriller and seasoned director Wes Craven takes his horror roots and sprinkles them into a great thriller. The plot is quick and interesting, failing to rely on cliches but more on actual in depth conversations and good action.

Its not the perfect movie and towards the end it seems a little horror movie-ish but for fans of Craven, McAdams, Murphy or just in the mood for a thriller than you could do a lot worse than this.


When you're afraid, close your eyes and count to five. Sometimes it works for me.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

I tend to really hate horror movies geared toward a certain audience. By that I mean I hate most horror movies rated PG-13 aka geared towards teen and tweens. Sure it may have some redeeming values but for the most part they are the formulatic churned out crap that dont really deliver any scares to those who actually even LIKE horror movies. Thats not always true, some PG-13 horror movies are good but those are usually just seen by adults anyway so it gets rid of the whole kid factor (think the upcoming film The Box). But Boogeyman (and its sequels) is one of those churned out pieces of crap.

The plot is pretty out there and thats saying a lot for horror movies. Tim (Barry Watson) is deathly afraid of the Boogeyman. You know why? The Boogeyman ate his father...thats right think about that one. And because of this he is always afraid of closets, dark places and going to bed. One by one his friends die until he faces the Boogeyman one on one in a final showdown. It is completly formulatic and none of the characters are very likeable. You can literally predict this movies plot without having seen it its that bad.

Well what about the gore, violence and scares? They are all oddly missing. They try to have a few "jump" moments but even those are lame and predictable.

With a name like the Boogeyman you'd think it be scary. But sadly its just an abomination.


What is that? Souvlaki! Is it good?

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

I dont know about the rest of you but I actually enjoyed my big fat greek wedding. I thought it was a nice, sweet chick flick that was really entertaining to watch. Now Nia Vardalos is back and now IN Greece for her new movie My Life in Ruins. The only problem is the charm that Vardalos had in BFGW seems to have dissolved a bit.

My Life in Ruins is about Georgia (Vardalos) who is a Greek American tour guide. She's not exactly the most well loved tour guide and usually gets stuck with the rejects in her group. Whether its an ignorant American couple, a couple of Australians, a thick frat boy, an IHOP employee, an old couple (the wife steals...A LOT) or a crotchety old man who makes fun of the tour and Georgia as much as possible (done by the wonderful Richard Dreyfus) she really hates her groups that she gets. In fact she hates her job. She wants to teach and all people want to do is shop. She gets stuck in a rickety old bus with her bus driver Poopie (...actually i got nothin) and thus is our plot.

Its a decent enough story done with a decent enough ensemble cast (with Dreyfus standing out) but overall thats JUST what this movie is...decent...and nothing more. It has no true flaws or problems but it has nothing remarkable or rememberable. I guess if you love Nia Vardalos, Greece or Richard Dreyfus then rush to rent this now but otherwise its a meh.


Can't trust a woman in a pants suit. Men wear the pants. The world doesn't need anymore Hillary Clintons.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

I always enjoy a good political thriller but I tend to enjoy them even more if they are true. Even though I already know the ending (Wikipedia would tell me) to the real story it still is good to see a movie that can be suspenful and engaging up until those last moments. Films like Valkyrie and Breach always amaze me because (despite the ending) they are gripping and engaging and always interesting to watch.

Breach is the story of Robert Hanssen, a devout Catholic man, who was responsible for the biggest security breach in the history of America. He was and had been writing letters to the Soviets and ultimately was jepordizing the safety of America. With the help of Eric O' Neill the FBI were able to bring him down and finally send him to jail. In 2007 Billy Ray (not Cyrus) wrote and directed a movie called Breach, based on these events. Billy Ray then went onto write State of Play (which I loved) and had previously directed and wrote Shattered Glass but has written for other films like Suspect Zero and Flightplan. Eric O' Neill actually helped with the film and consulted with the writers to make sure that the movie was entirely date for date factual.

Chris Cooper, a great character actor, plays the role of Robert Hanssen with Ryan Phillipe starring as O Neill. Essentially the story is exactly what I said in the first paragraph so there is no point in beating it to death. All I will say is that O' Neill is an undercover FBI agent working as a clerk for Hanssen for completly different reasons then the ones he was busted on. Thats all Ill say.

This film drips tension and is extremly fun to watch. Cooper and Phillipe's acting makes this movie worth watching but the writing and the directing style, as well as the wonderful score, really compliment this film.

So if you like factual political dramas, Chris Cooper or just a good thrill then go and see Breach.


Aw, there's something behind me, isn't there?

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Video games based on movies and movies based on video games usually suck...badly. I can count on maybe one hand the amount of REALLY good movie based video games and i can maybe think of one or two good movies based on games and DOOM is one of them. Now dont get me wrong its not a great movie and its never gonna win ANY awards but in terms of doing the game justice the DOOM movie does that much.

If youve played the DOOM games then you know the whole plot to the movie, with a few exceptions. The essential plot is this: Mars has science and is doing experiments. They open up the floodgates of Hell (or open the floodgates of a rapid acting mutated super virus that turns people into demonized super creatures or zombies) and the base goes to pot. The government sends in Marines to solve the problem. One man is left standing and must fight his way through demon after demon. For the most part, the film does a great job with this. Its not a deep story by any means and does have its fair share of corny lines and bad acting but it has a good action/sci fi flair. You can tell the writer and director were trying but werent going to try to hard like some others have in the past.

I must point out one of the nice things is the departure from most horror movies standards. Those standards that this movie breaks (and is much appreciated by me) is:
The black man dies first
If you are being chased by a creature you WILL die
If you fall in a whole with a creature you are SCREWED
'' '' '' you will get your butt handed to you without a fight
The damsel in distress
The stupid teammates

This movie does a good job of breaking those stereotypes and instead relies on creativity in the film.

Its not a great movie, nor is it that good. But it is (to me) still worth a look at if you like sci fi action thrillers and are a fan of the game series. It is one of the few movies based on games that does justice to the original license. And I appreciate that.


Thursday, October 22, 2009

I lied. The house is alive. We're all gonna die.

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

I really do enjoy horror movies. There is just something about being scared that gets me going. Sadly most modern day films rely on gore or sex to sell there films instead of genuine terror. But there is another form of horror that has seem to be forgotten: the haunted house. The haunted house films have been great and full of campy goodness. But in 1999 when a remake of House on Haunted Hill was released, a lot of people were skeptical and thought it would be another gore fest. Instead it is a brilliant mix of genuine thrills, a great whodunit mystery and hysterical (and on purpose) laughs.

I think the first thing that this movie benifits from is a great cast. Geoffery Rush is a great character actor and plays the eccentric owner of the house great. He is witty, sly, sneaky, snarky and just a fun character to listen to. The only complaint is that he looks and sounds like James Woods in the movie so if your ears bleed when you hear Woods talk then skip it. You also got Famke Jensen (amazing and beautiful as always. Plays a great bitch), Chris Kattan (in his only good role besides Corky Ramano), Ali Larter (horror princess) and Tyrese Gibbs (good actor). The cast is brilliant, wonderful to listen to and really likeable.

The second thing this movie benifits from is perfect pacing. Its slow when it needs to be and breakneck when it needs to be. The cinematography, art design of the house and furniture, the special effects, lighting and sound pretty much everything is great and shows a lot of really intense detail.

A lot of people write this off as a dumb modern day haunted house story but those people havent seen this movie. If you see it then you will see the best horror movie of the 90s and still one of my favorite classics to watch on Halloween.