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BrownBanana

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36 reviews in total 
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5 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
CG creates a huge distraction to a fairly OK story, 13 January 2009
4/10

Rented it out of pure curiosity, I've seen all the movies but never played the games, then again, I don't think one needs to have read the books, played the games, or watched the original in order to enjoy a stand-alone movie if written well.

Which this feature did, there wasn't any moments that made me say "huh? ", things were pretty well spelled out, maybe a little to well at some points but I can live with that.

What made this movie a really rough watch was the animation. Oh geez it was almost painful at some points. Everyone moved like they used the original Star Wars action figures from the 70's as reference for articulation, and the lip-synch… I understand that motion capturing of the mouth is the hardest thing to do but at least they could try and get some of it right rather than just have the characters move their lips in random ways in hopes that'll match up with the dialog.

As for the scenery – things were just a bit to clean, everything came off looking like smooth plastic, including, faces, monsters, décor, and explosions. No texture was really added, not even a mild attempt at it.

Like I said, the story is fair, nothing outstanding which helped keep my attention but the visuals were a huge distraction.

Death Race (2008)
185 out of 244 people found the following review useful:
who needs a plot when there's explosion and mayhem?, 21 August 2008
7/10

2012 the economy has hit bottom, broke through and has kept on descending. Along the way prisons have been handed over to the private sector that have chosen to make a profit by broadcasting gladiatorial style death matches starring the inmates, with the reward to the inmates after 5 victories – FREEDOM Enter Jensen Ames (Jason Stratham) a recently unemployed steel worker and former race car driver who lost his license but no matter how bad things are, he's a happy man as long as he has his family.

That is, until he's set up for the murder of his wife, imprisoned, and forced to compete in Death Race if he ever hopes to see his daughter again.

But enough of the plot! A paragraph blurb at the start and 8 minutes of character development is pushing the limits of this flick and that's not why a person would see a W.S. Anderson/Jason Stratham action flick and besides, a plot would allow "plot holes" and who needs to deal with that headache? The rest of the movie takes place in the 3 days of Death Race. The first 2 days are competition/elimination rounds reminiscent of Mario Kart as if it was designed by some rogue member of GTA on a disgruntled day but who loved the hidden short cuts and power-ups.

Amongst all the adrenaline filled action, Anderson makes sure to toss in the occasional character development or when he's feeling really daring he'll toss in some pseudo-dramatic realization our hero comes across which helps remind the movie-goer that the movie has a plot rather than just a string of explosive action sequence. All of this is done with the utmost use of cliché and designed to inspire the excitable little 12 year old boy in many of us to stay riveted in our seats as we wait for Jensen to strike with angry revenge for all he's been through.

The movie is everything a modern day movie aficionado should not like. It's brainless, sexist, ridiculously violent, and lacks any redeemable qualities. These are also all the reasons why I had so much fun with the movie. I went seeing what I expected and that's exactly what I wanted to see!

2 out of 7 people found the following review useful:
A sign of the times, 23 August 2007
5/10

This is part of a double feature disc I got (for I Am Legend staring Vincent Price).

The other day I was a little bored and finally decided to give it a look... WOW, if you haven't seen this one yet and just want to see how much times have changed in the past 45 years FIND THIS MOVIE! A quick rundown of the plot: Nuclear war breaks out while a family is leaving Los Angeles to go on a camping trip.

Now picture how that would occur in a modern day move and disregard it all! Yup, back in 1962 it was OK to step out and watch the blast from a distance, also, the enemy wouldn't bathe the US in a nuclear strike, they simply bombed a dozen or so major cities, other than that the rest of the country would be just fine. Also, people are civil enough that in their massive retreat from the major cities they would still stop by local diners to sit down and grab a bite to eat, what could is a major exodus if you have to do it in a rush and on a empty stomach? Luckily Dad had good enough sense to stop by an out of the way town to stock up on 3 weeks of food and hardware because he knew that's how long it would take for everything to get back under control.

The only dangers the family had to deal with after finding a good spot up in the mountains were the nearby hooligans, other than that, they were far enough not to worry about nuclear fallout or contaminated anything. Once again, Dad made sure that everyone maintained their normal daily routines... like grooming because if they don't groom, civilization as we know it will come to an end.

Basically, the movie just follows the families "struggle" to make it through the first few weeks of the war which of course ends with letting us know that our way of life is strong enough to over come nuclear holocaust.

Don't get me wrong, I didn't hate the movie, I actually found it pretty interesting, mostly because of the mentality portrayed in the movie. Like I said, if you want to see how times have changed, give this movie a viewing!.

0 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
it was mildly alright, 8 October 2006
5/10

This is one of those movies that I've seen the title of popping up a lot lately. I caught it mentioned on a few message boards, noticed wallpapers for it on deviantart and I saw some guy at a tattoo shop wearing a t-shirt. So I finally gave in and decided to give it a viewing. While waiting for it to show up in the mail I read over the reviews for it, both on IMDb and RT, basically what I saw: either people really liked it or didn't.

Last night, after having the movie sit next to my DVD player for the last 4 weeks I finally decided to give it a viewing.

eh... I'm about Luke warm with the movie, it was alright but nothing that didn't make me go WHOA! Or have me wonder when the movie would end. It was mildly entertaining and to a small degree I was able to overlook how choppy the storyline got but at the same time I was a little annoyed with the feeling that some things were over explained meanwhile other things were excessively glossed over.

The situations the twins got themselves into were entertaining, a bit over the top but it worked well for the movie, especially their second successfully blundered hit on the Russian mob bosses So many things were just sort of tossed into the movie... the big angry lesbian at the start of the movie or the bartenders turrets syndrome that sort of came & went, the twins spoken languages, the hokey non-explanation of Il Duce or the extremely skimmed over capture of the twins by the Italian Mafia.

The movie seems heavily inspired by Quentin Tarantino, specifically Pulp Fiction but sadly the writer didn't understand that story is a key element in a good movie, not just the basis of the idea.

Like I said, the movie was alright, I didn't come out hating it but at the same time I can only give the movie a 5/10

2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
All (bad) style and no substance, 1 July 2006
1/10

WOW! I saw the scores, I read the reviews and I'm not a fan of Wimmer or Equilibrium but because I'm masochistic I had to rent Ultraviolet. Actually, to tell you the truth by the time I was popping it into my DVD player I was kind of figuring I would be getting a good laugh from the movie (note: this is an upswing in my pre-mood for the movie) The movie starts off with this pseudo Marvel comics intro, it even goes as far as tries to be like the intro of Mallrats but instead of using the actual artist to do comic covers it goes with a bunch of knock offs.

I have to state that this movie jumps right into the story; it's even quicker than any of the Romero Dead flicks, but then again those movies were actually 'written' when you compare it to Ultraviolet. Beside the well known studio editing they seemed to have re-dubbed over half the movie, at some points I was wondering if I was actually watching a movie that was originally filmed in English with all the excessive out of synch lip movement I saw going on.

The rest of the movie is just schlock crap, honestly. The v/fx reminded me of Sci-Fi Channels quirky commercials, all of which looks rushed and half ass but in UV they decided to over-compensate the blue screen by going with all blue lighting in hopes that this would fool the audience into thinking that it's not crap but style.

After watching the movie I could see why the studio pulled the project from Wimmer and just decided to do what they could to try and make a buck. It's as if Wimmer sat down to Blade, Blade Runner, 28 days later and a few episodes of Aeon Flux, picked out a few gimmicks he really liked and wrote a movie around them. The movie constantly seemed to contradict itself especially with the how easy it was to spread the disease. Honestly, if it was as communicable as they kept saying in the movie, I think we'd be seeing people in a lot more plastic bubbles, not just walking around with their SARs masks on, especially with Six, if he had something in his genetics that was as deadly to them as they claimed than they should've been worried about his dead skin cells as they flaked off his body. But like I said at the start of this, this movie just attempted to look good and cared nothing about the story.

I can't get over how the movie just seemed to castaway any sense of believability in hopes of thinking the viewer would be dumb enough to buy any of the crud appearing before them. Someone honestly thought that the general public would sit there and ignore everything that didn't make sense and be overpowered with the thoughts of "that's so cool looking" when even that wasn't an option.

3 out of 6 people found the following review useful:
tonight on Springer...., 8 January 2006
3/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I really don't see R. Kelly making this 'series' out of seriousness, actually I think he made it on a dare or something to prove to his friends that his fans will eat up anything he puts out. So R. Kelly drank a bottle of laxatives and squeezed out 42 minutes of a musical. This thing covered EVERYTHING in way to much detail and seems based on a collage of Springer guests.

The reason I say all this is because I couldn't take it seriously and I can't imagine anyone else doing the same, each sequence just goes on & on, really, why does it take 10 verses to describe a man opening a closet door? And that's just an example; this sort of things goes on through out the whole series.

The best and worst part of it all, the 12 segment ends with a sort of cliffhanger, letting you think that R. Kelly just bought another bottle of laxatives and is stewing up another 6 or 12 segments to this all.

8 out of 16 people found the following review useful:
what a disappointment, 6 January 2006
1/10

Equilibrium This is a movie that lacks any and all sense of creativity. All it does is swipe from much better movies that use the Dichotomy theme, but in return, robs the audience by adding nothing new to the genre. Instead we get a movie that tries to take itself so serious it doesn't realize what a joke it is.

The basic plot of the movie is that society figured out emotions is what causes crime & war, so they create a drug that squashes emotions, therefore eliminating war. Of course they have to deal with those that are against it and refuse to take the suppressant drug are eliminated by "Clerics", basically, really chic cops in leather trench coats that use Gun-Kata.

This leads into the most annoying flaw of this movie for me, the 'lack of emotion' crock, for a society that lacks emotion; there sure is a lot of it. You see it in the architecture, clothes, sculptures and in the screaming & greedy people. It's not just the leaders who show emotion, which would be a fine example of hypocrisy, no; it's the folks working the menial jobs that get to run around and wet their pants in fear.

The movie also tries to cash in on popular Hollywood-Fu by creating it's own martial arts called Gun-Kata, the name itself already brings back horrible memories of Gymkata and the Gun gimmick isn't any better then the Gymnast on a concrete horse fighting 'crazies'. No, the concept behind Gun-Kata is that a well trained student of the art can jump into a room of armed assassins and not get hit by hundreds of rounds flying all around them, especially when they are dead center in the room. Then on the offense side, the Gun-Kata expert will be able to figure out exactly where his enemies are at and nail them dead with stunning accuracy with out even looking in their direction or needing them to be in his line of site.

Honestly, I rented this movie because it kept getting referenced by people as being one of the best over looked movies ever, sometimes I check back at those posting to see if I misread them saying "swiped from some of the best movies ever".

The Fog (2005)
8 out of 21 people found the following review useful:
worst remake of 2005, 15 October 2005
1/10

This has got to be the crappiest remake of 2005. I really can't believe I paid full price for this movie.

Apparently, in the remake they thought that the audience wouldn't understand how a boat load of lepers got screwed over by the founding fathers and had all their valuables taken, so instead they intertwine this complete crap ass back story because the modern day audience is considered to stupid to figure it out from the explanations of a drunken priest and a recently discovered journal. Then to entice pubescent boys & girls they decide to throw in a completely useless shower scene, nothing was shown except for Tom's nipple, which being a straight male is not really my thing. The biggest kick to the head was the lame ass idea to change the purpose of that attack from greed to 'lost love'. Let me point out something about how stupid this part is, just in case you're not getting it, they both died at the same time! Why/How the hell would Elizabeth be separated? The movie just f/ckin blew, worst of the year that I've seen, things just didn't make sense, and characters were next to useless, why did they show the fisherman get leprosy, while no one else was infected? Why the hell did the fisherman show up at the car wreck? He was just plain stupid! Then you have the lamest token black character EVER in a movie! Did they not get the hint while watching South Park that the "Token Black" character is played out? It was almost like the Producer one day said "you know what this movie needs, a funny black guy, kids love that these days!". The Priest was another useless character, in the original he was the one that explained everything, he was more of a functional drunk, in this one, and he was just sitting around waiting to be killed… LAME.

On a final note: what the hell was the purpose of the burning vehicles? They weren't in accidents, they just where curbed parked and on fire… STUPID! Be warned, I never try to tell a person NOT to see a movie, but I will say "DON"T PAY FOR A MOVIE TICKET ON THIS ONE!"

Things I would've done differently, 22 July 2005
5/10

...or at least liked to have seen in the movie

I thought the FF movie was a bit to slow for a comic to film adaptation. Instead of all the endless chatting about pitying regarding The Thing, watching Reed & Sue fumble thru a relationship & seeing Johnny trying to be a big stud. They could've picked up the pace & at the same time keep the story they wanted in tact.

Things should've been more on-the-fly, instead of this endless slow pacing there should've been sequences of them being forced into their superhero roles against low end super powered villains & your common thug. I wouldn't have them attack these situations as a team, mostly as individuals & maybe the occasional duo, fumbling their way into saving the day and learning their powers at the same time.

With this pacing, things wouldn't have gotten so boring for me, Johnny would've learned how fly way ahead of the game & instead of making his ability to fly an (un)exciting moment at the end of the movie they could've instead chose to make it his ability to control what part of him burst into flames (i.e.: saving some hot chick from a deadly fall by shutting off the flames around his arms and catching her) Sue & Reed could've fallen in love when Sue noticed that Reed is a man of action in the heat of an intense situation, instead of the generic walks on the park and discussion of problems.

As for Ben Grimm, it would've just been cool as f/ck to see him get into a super-powered bar room brawl on Clancy Street.

The ending would've pretty much gone the same way, they join together as a team and fight doom, but it would've been a lot more interesting, and the battle would be more complex rather than each doing 1 single power ranger move. It would've been heavier attacks by both Doom & the team with a much more climatic ending.

4 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
a sad example of a loss of roots, 14 March 2005
9/10

I really don't know how 'offended' I should be by Heidi in this documentary. When I 1st heard about it, all I really got was how this 'Nam baby was raised in the states and turned her back on her birth mother. With that in mind, I was really ready to be annoyed by her.

Instead I got annoyed with the environment she grew up in. She really had no cultural diversity. There was a large black community and a large white community but nothing else… unless you want to include the Klan. The people she grew up around where something out of King of The Hill, basically if they never even noticed that she was different, they just figured she always just had a tan. I guess unless you have an actual accent or a non-American sounding name, they just aren't going to notice.

So basically she grows up in this overall sheltered bubble, never being exposed to her actual culture. But she finds the need to go & finally meet her birth mother, sort of as a need for closure. What she doesn't really realize is that the rest of the world doesn't really function like Tennessee.

What we end up following is a woman going back to her roots but facing culture shock, she doesn't understand or really comprehend the hows & why's of the way people interact in Vietnam. This really disturbed me since the Heidi came to the states when she was about 6 or 7, but every bit of her Vietnamese side has been burnt out of her. In turn, her birth family is confused because she's one of them but doesn't understand why she doesn't want to accept their family ways.

The hardest part for me was her misunderstanding of their request for them to take care of her birth mother; she refused to help financially either by mailing money or just by taking her back to the states and taking care of her in Tennessee. I do understand that to her, this woman is pretty much just a stranger, but than again, this woman gave up her daughter for her own daughters' safety. Probably the hardest thing a parent could ever have to choose to do.

The gratitude her mother gets from her daughter is to be completely cut off. Heidi, even though she's exposed to the hardships that her maternal mother faced/faces, she still doesn't get it. She doesn't understand that in an Asian culture it's expected that the children take care of the parents when the parents are old. Basically, a very respectful thank you for all the years they spent raising and sacrificing for their children. Unlike America that it's more dependent on how well the parents saved up & how well their retirement plan is that a person bases on whether the parents should live in a retirement community or a house that they paid off. Options that her mother, realistically, does not have.

At the end of this all, I can only hope that Heidi sees this documentary and sees the reflection of herself, in hopes that she'll find the desire to learn more about her roots & take on her rightful responsibilities and roll for her mother.


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