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Barrio Tales (2012)
Super low rent "Tales From The Hood" - AWFUL
I know others have said the same before but there is no other movie to compare this to than the excellent low budget "Tales From The Hood." I expected something as good or even close but what a piece of garbage this is! It is very well filmed and I was excited in the first 15 min to see a good gory, fun movie. Instead it just misses opportunity after opportunity to scare, entertain, present fun plot twists or anything else that makes a movie like this worthwhile.
What surprised me the most was not how poor the story telling was (bottom of the barrel) but how well done the editing, cinematography (ok, filming), lighting and set design was. Such a shame that an investment of time and money was put into this when it lacks so much in writing and creativity.
Zero plot twists, zero screen play, zero fun!! Don't waste your time. If you're a fan of amazing low budget movies (like me), then get a hold of the movie "Favor". Wow. See my review on this if you want but either way, track it down and watch it.
Truly amazing movie.
I am very, very critical of most movies. Especially these type of indie flix where the 2-bit actors recite their barely memorized lines one after another after another with little emotion. Or overact using the f-word to show their "range." Or act in ways no normal person ever would.
You won't find this in Favor, my friend.
I caught Favor on Comcast Xfinity Streampix last night and its the best movie I've seen in 5 years. Maybe 10. The casting, acting, script writing, character and plot development, and entertainment value are all 10 out of 10. I put it up their with Blood Simple, one of my top 10 of all time. The main character (Blayne Weaver) acts exactly like you would expect a man to act in his predicament. His wife (Cheryl Nichols) was amazing and it was hard to believe she was acting. What a star, and what a gorgeous woman. And the bad guy - Patrick Day. Wow. Maybe the best acting I have ever seen, and I mean ever.
Yes, there are some flaws. The policewoman and her smart alec demeanor was over the top and a throwaway part. The plot had a few minor holes, but so did The Departed and The Godfather. But even with these minor flaws, I still cannot recommend this movie more. It's low budget indie look and style add so much to the realism. Compare this to the piece of indie trash called "At The Sinatra Club" I saw the night before or the ridiculously stupid waste of celluloid (or video tape) "Iron Doors" I saw the night before that and one can see what a true masterpiece this is.
To all involved with this movie: Well done! BRAVO! Please make more just like it and this time get a major release so I don't have to catch your fine work two years later on Comcast.
Iron Doors (2010)
So much promise in this movie. It looked like one of those gems that you accidentally discover and are excited to watch. You know the ones with the "Best of Berlin Film Festival 2010" or some other cool sounding awards. These awards are always surrounded with the two laurel leaves on the bottom. So you say, "Hey! This thing has a bunch of these darn tooting awards lining the front cover. Matter of fact, it's a veritable forest of laurel leaves up there! Honey, get the weedwacker and let's watch this thing!!!"
I guess it was a very slow year with little competition when they gave those awards out as this movie only deserves one: Biggest Disappointment of Any Movie I Have Ever Watched for Free on Comcast Streampix®.
Looking at the cover and reading the description, one might think it is like the Cube, or Saw or even that indie 2008 Russian movie "Elevator" (find it if you haven't seen it - great flick). But you would be wrong. Iron Doors (Iron Bores?) is a sorely misconceived, poorly acted, very poorly cast, silly, pretentious slog that takes itself far too seriously. At least half the movie consists of one foul-mouthed main character swearing in his German-lite accent about what he is going to do to whomever put him behind these "damned Iron Doors!" Though he is supposedly an "investment banker," he's just as stupid as they come. I'm talking "scream at your TV" stupid. As an example, he is given a professional-grade two-part welder's torch able to cut through many inches of solid steel. "Great, this movie should be over very soon," you might say. Not so fast. Even though he supposedly puts together $100 million dollar business deals, he doesn't understand that a blue flame (one with lots of oxygen from the oxygen tank) is hotter than a yellow flame (too little oxygen). So he tries to cut through the Iron Door with a yellow flame. Of course, it only creates a carbon mark on the door. Duh. I believe the truth behind this is that the cheap-o producers knew that a blue flame would actually cut through their set door so they had to keep the character artificially dumb and have him keep the flame yellow. OK, fine. BUT . . . within a few minutes, he finally figures out how to get a blue flame and is slicing through steel rebar like it's margarine. Let's see now. Blue flame + steel rebar = cut rebar. So: Blue flame + iron door = Freedom! Sorry folks. That takes an intelligent character and professional writing. Only amateurs here. HE NEVER GOES BACK TO CUT THE IRON DOOR! Really? I could go on and on with this character's stupidity.
Poorly conceived, poorly written, no back story, no connection or empathy to actor, no character development, poor understanding of the most basic tenets of the Christian faith (along with heaven, hell and sin) that it is supposedly based on.
Don't waste your time. Watch Cube, Saw, Elevator (2008) or almost any other movie for more entertainment.
Synecdoche, New York (2008)
Sickening Beyond Belief
Minus 10 out of 10. This is not a movie. It's a hallucination. I was so eager to see this movie that I drove three hours to a special viewing in NYC in 2008. I'm a huge Hoffman fan (at least I was before he overdosed) and count 'Before the Devil Knows You're Dead' and 'The Savages' as two of my favorites. I also dig crazy mixed up flix like 'Memento.' But this movie Wow. This movie was ultimately so disgusting, vile, pointless and worthless.
The first hour is good. We have established characters and a layout for what you anticipate will be a tough but ultimately fulfilling slog. But it turns really bad really fast and when it does, it will likely turn your stomach. So painful to watch. Lacking even a trace of a redemptive quality on any imaginable level. Such a huge disappointment.
One critic described the experience as two hours of a five year old smearing dog feces in your face. I would say it was only one hour of this treatment but you get the point.
Under no circumstances or state of mind should you watch this movie. You've been warned.
Speechless - KAPAYA!
Out of the 1000's of movies I've seen in my 42 years of life, this is the worst acting and worst script writing I have ever seen. Without question, the worst. The timing, the character reactions, the way the lines are delivered. It left me and will leave you speechless. Characters switch reactions repeatedly to suit the "plot" and act aggressive and passive at will. They get excited or depressed at the same issue. The Queen Of Bad Scenes is the shakedown of a debtor. The characters laugh as they shake the guy down and so does the debtor. BUT when they confront the same man 15 minutes later, his reaction is completely and totally different. He's afraid for his life yet laughed at the same threats 15 minutes earlier! No explanation whatsoever and no reason whatsoever EXCEPT the need to push the dumb plot along. Now for the King of Bad Scenes: The Leo's Rule Scene. O.M.G. It is so silly, so over the top, so poorly written, so out of place, and so poorly acted that it belongs in any actor's training of "How Not To Act 101." These type of events happen over and over. And poor David Proval. It's very difficult to explain how bad his acting is and how poorly written his lines are. The crying scene with his mournful voice-over will leave you . . . speechless. And wait until he feels up the tranny. He grabs the "chick's" breast and screams at him, "WHAT'S THIS! WHAT'S THIS! WHAT'S THIS!" The tranny replies, "It's my breast." Proval's answer? "IT'S A LIE! IT'S A LIE!" In a later scene, the sexually confused Proval delivers what may be the single worst line in this sea of bad lines: "I have a right . . . to my degeneracy." How David got cast for the Sopranos after this movie is very surprising. By the way, he was excellent in the Sopranos. I just wish Janet Soprano was in 'Flipping' to off his ace early on. Gene Mitchell as "Shot." Wow. So very, very bad. And the number of F-words in this movie as these truly horrific actors try to sound tough "like they saw in Goodfellas" is appalling. In many scenes, it's every third word. Superb writing!
I could go on, and on, and on. Truly a Tour De Force of bad acting and amateur scriptwriting. How this thing didn't sweep the Razzies, i don't know. Bravo for a truly bad movie!
The Set Up (1995)
Will Make You Sick to Your Stomach
I wonder why are there so few reviews and so little discussion about this movie? At first, it's seems like a typical 1995 b-movie with the exact feel from that era. It started off great. Nicely filmed, starring Billy Zane (normally an excellent actor), James 'freaken' Coburn! How can it go wrong? Oh, man does it go wrong.
I caught it for free on Amazon Prime and I should have been paid to watch it. I suggest that you get together with a group of friends with your remote handy. Every time someone in the cast does something that is completely foreign to what a normal human who lives on earth would do, take a shot of beer. By the end of the movie, you and all your friends will be rip- roaring drunk and projective vomiting on each other between fits of laughter. For extra credit, have a bottle of jack Daniels handy. Every time one of the characters makes an unfulfilled threat such as: "You have (fill in blank) seconds to (fill in blank) or I'm going to (fill in blank)" and then doesn't do ANYTHING, please take a shot. It will add to the the hilarity. Examples: "If I don't see her in five seconds, I am going to kill you!" 1-2-3-4-5. Nothing. "If you ever touch me again, I'll kill you!" The guy touches him again, and doesn't get killed. This happens over and over and over again. All kidding aside, who is the writer of this movie? There is no way he has ever written a movie.
Horrific writing, truly absurd plot twists, a serious gem of stupidity and cliché movie-making. Should most definitely be part of any bad movie aficionado arsenal!
Fall Time (1995)
What the EFF did I just watch?
So extraordinarily bad on so many levels. It made no sense at any juncture. Characters never did one thing a normal person would do. The script doesn't explain anything. It actually made me hurt in my stomach. Didn't one single person who had a level of power over this film look at it and say it is incomprehensible? Didn't anyone like the producer think it might be a good idea to let a small group of people see it just to make sure it made sense? I needed extra lines to make this review long enough so I'm sticking them here. This film doesn't deserve any more discussion. It deserves to buried in an active volcano. Is this enough lines for this baby to get published? How about now?
One thing you will learn from this film: Steven Baldwin is actually a functioning mongoloid.
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)
So very violent!
We started watching this with my boys (11 and 7) last fall. It was borderline then on the violence and sex scale but still OK because it is Marvel and it is cool. Not anymore. This last episode (on the train with the good guys trying to track a secret case) was so, so violent and over the top. Stabbing in the back, girl shot at close range twice with one shot where the gun is pressed against her belly while she is being hugged(!), huge amounts of blood, more stabbing, open wounds, then ridiculous amounts of blood. Follow this with talk of the two main characters "having sex". What is wrong with these producers? This is Marvel. It's supposed to be for kids.
Please don't watch this show with young children or you will be sorry.
American Hustle (2013)
Prepare to get Hustled.
There are no spoilers in my review:
I have never been so disappointed in a film. With all the hype, I expected another House of Games (1987) or Grifter (1990) or maybe a hard edged drama like The Departed. Instead I saw a very boring film that had no idea what it was. Before I went in, I read that it was a drama. Others said a comedy. Others said a dark comedy. It attempted to be all of the above and succeeded at none. The movie was so boring, after 45 minutes I started to watch the reactions of the viewers around me in the packed theater. It was very telling. Over and over, we would be presented a drama scene with deep consequences to the plot and characters followed by what was supposed to be a funny scene. For example, we have someone worried they are going to get killed at anytime followed by a housewife cleaning her house while dancing to the song "Live & Let Die." Do you laugh? You uneasily chuckle. A little. At the end of the scene when you realize the director is holding up the "laugh" sign. In another scene, you have a character do harm to his superior. The superior is beaten pretty badly. Not only is the subordinate not punished, it is played for laughs, Not knowing what reaction I was supposed to have actually made my stomach queasy - and I eat habaneros for breakfast! I said several times to the people I was with that this is boring. This is not well done. They all agreed. The ending and wrap up will leave you in awe at its lacking.
So much talent and potential wasted.
This Thing of Ours (2003)
Worth watching for the worst scene ever
This was really a bad movie. It looks like it was filmed using a Best Buy camcorder and lighting from Rent-All®. The "director" also starred in the movie. Some a**-hat (*=s) named Danny Provenzano. Never seen him and never want to again. He doesn't look Italian at all and has this strange, crooked face with huge flaring nostrils. Truly unsettling to look at. His acting is another story. It's just one cliché after another. He tries to act New York Italian but comes off like St. Paul MN actor at the Eau De Claire Wisconsin Community Theatre trying his best to pull off Sonny from The Godfather. He's most likely making ends meet by giving those acting classes to the special needs kids (and I respect him from that) but he really shouldn't be staring in his own movie.
Now for that scene I mentioned in the title of my review. This one scene is enough for you "Awful Movie Fans" to perk up and head to Amazon or what ever dark hole of a rental store you can find this turd:
The scene happens at a Chinese restaurant. Four members of a crew lead by Eau De Claire Danny (Character named Nicky in the movie) are sitting around the table. "It's time to try those improvisation chops!" thinks Danny. So for no reason, his character starts telling a story about a 6 foot 8 inch man he and the mobster to his right had to kill. I's clearly not scripted as seen on the faces of the other Othellos around the table. Danny sets the scene and looks to the other actor to jump in. Oh, he does - adding his own brand of improvisation. Now it's back to Eau De Claire Danny who actually contradicts what he said earlier and also mixes up the improvised facts laid out by the other actor This goes on for sooooooo long and it is soooooo bad on so many levels. If anyone other than Eau De Claire Danny had directed the movie, it would have been left on the cutting room floor in its entirety. But there it is --- for all you lucky viewers to see. And see you must. Think: awfulness of the graveyard scene in Plan 9 and you'll get the idea!