Reviews written by registered user
mike-ryan455

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106 reviews in total 
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The Plan (2009) (V)
178 out of 270 people found the following review useful:
Disappointing, 19 October 2009
4/10

I hate to say it, but the Galactica stable are really losing their touch.

The story is half stock footage from the series and half filler. OK, we learn some details like HOW Ellen Tigh got out alive - but we knew she did. We see some trivia, like who Caprica Six met just before the raid, but who cares? We see some familiar Cylons in unfamiliar and unexpected places, generally risking throwing off continuity.

We don't see the things I really wanted to know. I wanted to see the Cylon worlds. I wanted to see WHY the Cylons chose to attack, and why now. I want to see WHY they chose to infiltrate Earth, and why that way. I want to learn the Cylon choices and motivations and psychology.

Oddly, the costume designer was shown in the credits before the writer. I guess the writing is less important than the consulting producer and other illusory titles. Jane Epperson wrote this one, as well as being the executive producer. Ron Moore wasn't in the critical credits. Where was he? Perhaps if he'd spent more time on this than Virtuality he'd have gotten one good product.

While the visuals were good, what I feel is the now increasingly tired end of a series. How long will they keep scraping the bottom? I guess as long as they think they can make money at it.

57 out of 69 people found the following review useful:
No attempt to be a realistic war movie, 26 February 2013
4/10

I am watching Company of Heroes presently. The story is set in the Battle of the Bulge period. The force on the attack are Americans. Normally in a war one uses the weapons of your own side. The "sniper" hero is carrying a post-war FN-49 rifle. It was first issued to a military unit in 1949. Another soldier in the unit was carrying a British issue Number IV Mark 1 or Mark 2 SMLE infantry rifle.

Their historical sins were not limited to the American unit. It may sound trivial, but the babe spends half the movie in pants. That may sound trivial but the Feuhrer forbade women to wear pants. She wouldn't go into a Nazi base in tight fitting slacks.

Well, you may think that's all trivial but that's just immediately ended the suspension of disbelief for me. It only gets worse from there. The plot is equally ludicrous. Let's just say that by the time the whole mess had happened, we have managed to run into a Russian who speaks excellent English and a British bar brawler who both save the day in their own way.

So, is it a "stay away" movie? No. If you REALLY need something to soothe your craving for some violence or a 21st Century politically correct WW II movie, this will fit the bill quite well. But that's about all.

62 out of 80 people found the following review useful:
Even worse than Sci-Fi channel movies, 1 July 2012
3/10

Earthkiller is one of those movies where afterwards you have two questions. The first is "What is it" and the second is "why did I bother watching it?" It was bad. The sets were fake and the acting and script was far worse. The CGI looked like a video game and the non-CGI effects were far worse. Usually you want a movie like this to stop tossing so much ketchup around. This one didn't have the money in their budget to use real ketchup.

So, enough about other such pleasantries. Let's cut to the sex. Well, there wasn't any. We had one character walk around naked for a while. She was kind of cellulite looking but hey, good enough. We only got one fur shot and that was before she put on clothes. From there, the whole movie went down hill tremendously.

This must be an extreme cheapie Indie movie. As such I don't expect too much. I've seen a lot worse in these so I won't complain any more. I do hope the producers make their money back and use any profits for some film school classes. They need them, bad.

46 out of 54 people found the following review useful:
Pretty putrid, actually, 31 December 2011
3/10

I love World War II movies. I have enjoyed ones made during World War II through the present. I have enjoyed all countries of origin from the Nazi propaganda turkey "Stuka" on. I enjoy movies about all sides and all theatres of the war, if it's a well done movie. Alas, Battle Recon definitely is not.

It's normally a very bad sign when the director, the writer and the top billed star are all the same person. It was. With ludicrous acting and an utterly cliché script there was little to save the movie. The even had utterly cliché characters like the classic black on black trench coat evil SS officer.

The script wasn't just cliché, it was 21st century politically correct cliché. The day had to be saved by two Italian partisan women.

It's not difficult to get historical continuity in World War II movies. There are so many armchair experts to assist you. Obviously they didn't bother to go to gunboards.com and ask for a decent one. The German uniforms were clearly East German uniforms with Nazi insignias sewn on. They were almost all SS insignias, like they had hired cheaply a bunch of re-enactors.

They couldn't even get basic continuity items right. The Italian partisan's gun kept switching between a Mauser and a M1 Garand. It was as if they put down their guns between shots and couldn't even tell everyone to pick up the right one between shots.

Don't bother with this one, not with thousands of better World War II movies out there.

Fortress (2012) (V)
45 out of 54 people found the following review useful:
Damn good!, 20 December 2011
7/10

If you like flying movies or World War II movies, I don't think you can go wrong with Fortress.

The movie is about the crew of a B-17 Flying Fortress flying out of North Africa during World War II, during a time of very high casualties. It centered on the crew of one plane, as they fought and as many of them died.

It was generally quite good. On the up side, they had a credible, real story and a pretty good set of actors. The special effects were generally pretty good. They didn't make any historical errors I spotted either.

It wasn't perfect. Some parts were predictable and there were lapses in special effects. But it was good and I definitely enjoyed it. Give it a try and I think you'll enjoy it too.

39 out of 44 people found the following review useful:
Mindblowingly good!, 11 January 2015
10/10

You already know the subject, animal husbandry. You all know the thesis - that animal husbandry is simply ecologically unsustainable with our current population numbers.

What Cowspiracy does is take one person through a very personal journey to show just how there is only one course of action that will allow this species to have a reasonable chance of surviving at the current population levels. We can change and adapt and go to a more healthy diet or we can wait for a massive ecological change and have our population levels and civilization crash like so many others have before.

Is it perfect? No, but it is still that good. I wish broadcast TV had the guts to run it. I wish it were played in schools. Unfortunately they never will.

29 out of 32 people found the following review useful:
Fun, but not accurate, 26 April 2010
6/10

Don't get me wrong. This ranks up there with my other low brow comedy shows on Spike like "1,000 ways to die." It's great for something to relax to, and watching people get splattered makes it all the more fun. But accurate it is not.

Their firearms knowledge is ludicrous. For example, on the Yakuza vs. Mafia episode they stated the Yakuza used the Walther P-38 pistol. Yet the graphics they showed were of a P-08 Luger. These are two totally, totally different looking pistols designed close to half a century apart. They had the IRA carrying a Boer War period .455 Webley revolver and they touted its reliability over a Makarov. I own both. There is no comparison between the Makarov and the Webley. You can't hit the broad side of a barn with a Webley.

They do not test uniformly. In the Yakuza vs. Mafia episode, the Mafia had six machine gun targets they had to hit with the Thompson. The Yakuza only had four they had to hit with a Sten. That gave the Sten an easier score. Worse still, they used completely different ways of testing the Russian hand grenade and the US hand grenade. Why not do something logical - put three pig carcases up in an enclosed room and see how each grenade does? It's a uniform test? I shouldn't expect too much from Spike. It's unabashedly guy TV, and I like that. But they could do a lot better job with a little more care.

Hysteria (2011)
30 out of 40 people found the following review useful:
Jolly good!, 5 April 2012
8/10

Hysteria is a very British and Victorian story that is very funny and relevant today. It's also a light sex romp that never shows anything or anybody with anyone. How much better than that?

The production values are quite lovely. It isn't a cast of thousands but it doesn't need to be. The principal players do their roles quite well, and even if you're just some American who has never heard of any of them before you can well enjoy it.

Whether the story is really entirely true or not as it claims or is just a tale of manners, sex and modern sensibilities I don't know. But it is attractive, light and jolly good fun. Ah yes, may there always be an England. With movies and sex toys like this the sun will never set on the British Empire.

21 out of 23 people found the following review useful:
For SyFy channel, not that bad, 2 September 2011

First, I had never heard of the Red Factions game before reviewing this movie. I'm looking at it as a stand alone SciFi movie from SyFy Channel. I'm a sucker for Grade B Science Fiction movie so it looked worth trying.

For SyFy Channel, it wasn't that bad. There was no ridiculous monster eating damsels in distress. The special effects were adequate, but with CGI computer horsepower these days it doesn't take much. The sets and much of the production team were Bulgarian, but this is SyFy channel and you expect the best in Bulgarian film making. The actors were OK, but that's rarely the problem with these movies. What's usually the problem with SyFy Channel movies is the script, and that was kind of OK. Not an immortal classic but you didn't cringe.

I give it a fair six. It's worth seeing on a slow afternoon with a pizza.

42 out of 65 people found the following review useful:
Good small, low budget Sci Fi film, 26 January 2013
7/10

If you want Star Wars spectacle, this isn't it. You will be bored. If you want non-stop action with machine guns and Kung Fu Ninja kick boxing scenes twirling and flying in slow motion every five minutes, this isn't it. You will be bored. If you rate your movies by the quality of the special effects, this one will not be very good in your book.

I enjoyed it. It was a movie about the UFO and aliens coming, but one centering on what is going on in the heads of the typical ditz people who actually experience it. It was a small movie about small people and how their little world completely disintegrated.

Yes, the special effects were something a good amateur could do at home. So what? They were better than the ones on classic Sci Fi movies of a few decades ago. We have higher and higher expectations for special effects now.


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