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Cyber Wars (2004)
Gibson Fans will Enjoy!
OK first off, its not a great movie, the acting is pretty awful. But I give a huge amount of credit for the people behind Cyber Wars taking on the rare challenge of recreating a William Gibson post modern cyberpunk genre film. Its rare that we see these ideas put on display and although this movie is very low budget, what they do with the budget is very detailed and imaginative in recreating a Gibson future. Similar in ways to Johnny Mneumonic, it goes deeper really by far into Cyberpunk reality. Its not near as well made a movie, but its a lot deeper and more interesting than Johnny was. Fans of the Cyberpunk genre owe it to themselves to check this one out.
Also under movie references, This movie takes a lot more from Neuromancer and other Gibson novels by far than The Matrix. But that movie took a lot from Gibson too. Like the term "Jacked In" and many many more terms that Gibson coined and people take for granted today like Cyberspace, Virtual Reality, Neural Interfacing, etc.
Even if its not what we would hope to see in every way, it will awaken so many of your greatest memories from first reading Neuromancer. This is a genre we very rarely see and even more rarely, see done covering so many of the cyberpunk monikers as this film covers quite well. Its actually very ambitious of a movie, and you can see it was made by true fans of the genre who really did their best to capture the post modern ambiance, and they mostly succeed! With better actors and better dialogue in parts this would have been really great! But its not awful by any means. Its not like pure junk you find on the Sci-Fi channel usually, or a dumbed down Gibson ripoff, which often leaves people to interpret this film as being pretensious or goofy in ways, but I guess a lot of people still find this genre a little too far fetched even though Gibson has proved himself to be the Prophet of the 20th century by having predicted and even heavily influenced so much of the technology we have now and where we're headed. Its too bad that more people still cant embrace the scope of the ideas of Gibson even today even within their fantasy's.
Perhaps we'd see a lot more films from this arena, So far The Matrix reigns the Champion, and even it was hard for many people to cope with. And the Wachowskis had a hell of a time convincing Hollywood to producers to go with it. Good for them for pushing it on through!
Until we can widen our minds to accept more range in our imaginations, then we will continue to see an over abundance of Hollywood remakes that stick to their recipes and safe margins for getting easy profits off the consumers dolling out easily recognizable franchises taken from Comic Books, Video Games, and occasionally good books that don't push the feeble minds of our world too far to think.
Murder Party (2007)
I laughed out Loud more than any comedy in years
The movie was hilarious. Not the kinda goofy jokes so much like you'd see in a SNL movie. But situational black comedy that is very sharply orchestrated with brilliant dialogue and creative situations. Like when the whole group shoots up Sodium Penethol (Truth Syrum) and gets into a groovy discussion about their personal lives, it was realistic and hilarious at the same time, and really helps you enjoy the characters.
Its also very well shot, clear, lighting, audio is great too. It doesn't look Amateur at all. The acting was as good as any Will Ferrel comedy, and better than most of the Hollywood trash bin comedies.
My favorite LOL moment though was when the Leader guy is high and looks around the room, notices the guy who confessed under the truth drug that he's Bi-Sexual and gets this kinky grin on his face, and then it jumps to him banging the guy in the puppet gallery where he'd previously had the Lexy girl. That was was just too funny, if Id have been drinking it would have come out my nose. There really were more LOL moments in this movie than I've seen in a long time, and I usually don't laugh at movies. Comedies I typically think suck all around, especially the ones that come out of Bollywood.
The funniest flicks I often find are B-Movies that go straight to video. Another one VERY much like this movie is Satan's Little Helper. I really loved that one too.
The movie got a little boring during the chase scene. Or about 10 mins of it. When they get to the big art party though it quickly got fun again! This is a must scene party movie to watch with a bunch of your mates.
Couldn't Stand It!
OK first off, Im a huge fan of The Transformers Animated Movie from way back and the Series was pretty good and I watched most of them. But still love the Animated Movie and Im 35 now. I went into Transformers with much of an open mind that it would at least be somewhat nostalgic. And other than a few words that Optimus Prime spoke "One shall stand. One Shall Fall." I couldn't stand to sit to the end of the movie. The Transformers were ugly, extremely bulky and fake looking. They weren't streamlined at all which made them look even more absurd when they were dancing around like kung fu masters. And gliding on the Freeway, even though they had no wheels on their feet. Its like they were just ghosts. All of the combat looked like it was happening on a whole different layer than the scenery it was attached to. Even though rockets and bullets are flying everywhere. THere didn't seem to be much of it affecting the enviorment at all other than a few specific obstacles. The Autobots, maybe 6 of them in all. Had very little Personality at all, unlike the old series. The Decepticons had NO personality period other than Megatron who was only in the movie a few minutes and barely spoke a word other than to utter a few memorable lines from the old movie but said with much less Flair or Conviction. Often when an Autobot would speak it seems to come from speakers outside of them, rather than from the autobots. Which of course they are, but it shouldn't seem so, like any actors. Its like they were terribly dubbed with soundbites from the old movie, but slowed down and more automated. The little robots were clunky bug type things not at all like some of the old guys that would pop out of Soundwave. Of course there's no Soundwave this time. The plot was HORRIBLE! Every time the human kid spoke, I just wanted someone to squash his head. His Hot girlfriend was far better than him who was serious all the time and seemed to understand what was going on better than him. This movie is so goofy, its laughable. And Im saying that based on the Old Animated Movie which was 10 times more serious and complex and made a hell of a lot more sense. This is the worst looking movie by Michael Bay so far. It was like a computer game with really bad graphics. But Im sure those interested will see for themselves, its hard to resist. But prepare to sit in Horror at how little thought and consideration of the True Transformers, went into this pile of overblown Rock Em Sock Em Robots.
Jesus Camp (2006)
Scariest Film All Year
OK I love scary movies, a good atmospheric horror film, etc. But I never expected to have the hair raised on the back of my neck and made to feel so disturbed as I've felt seeing Jesus Camp. Its one thing to be disgusted by the levels at which the neo Conservative extreme right will go to brainwash their followers. But to mix their political agendas so sinisterly with religion and indoctrinate that into the very core of young children, is as disgusting and dark to me as studying how the Nazis kidnapped children from their families and indoctrinated them into the beliefs of fascism. This is not Christianity! This is purely political right wing strategy out of control! Or at least one woman's right wing political agenda that she's imposing on the impressionable minds of children in such a despicable way that it seriously made me squirm to watch this. This is an excellent documentary though, and one that you could tell is made to warn people that these things are going on in our country and that we all should definitely VOTE when our time comes and not let the purely evangelical conservatives dominate the polls and control this country allowing more war mongering, monkeys like GW to send our children to die in his rich man's war. College people and stoners especially need to vote. Please.
An Original Horror at last!
OK first to begin with. The one movie similar to this one is Jaccob's Ladder. And they aren't really very similar and this is the only movie like it that I actually thought was better! This movie is really amazing! I can't believe it went straight to video. It has a beautiful and exotic original soundtrack throughout the film. The Cinematography is Outstanding! The acting is better than any independent film I've seen in years. And the plot is a new concept in Horror that I've never thought about before, but after realizing it, I found it to be one of the most frightening situations that could ever happen to me. It doesn't end like you'd expect. There is a definite twist to it. Everything in the movie is completely possible and yet utterly horrifying if it did happen, and possibly this has happened to people. I have Multiple Sclerosis, and this could happen to me. If you already fear doctors and hospitals, this will definitely make your fear worse. And if you never have, then you might develop a new fear for them you never thought of before. Much like the fear of being thought dead and buried alive. Your going to think this movie has a plot like Misery at first. But the twist takes it completely out of the Misery realm and into previously uncharted Horror territory. Except for as mentioned before Jacob's Ladder. But again its not the same and better done, and has so much more of a poetic resonance left at the end that I couldn't stop thinking about it. Its beautiful in a way, but ultimately a horrible tragedy that could happen to anyone, and as I've said. It might have happened to people already. Which is really just too horrible to think about. This is the best Hospital Horror film I've seen and I love horror movies and have seen about everyone that I can find. I also love Mindfark movies if you know what I mean. Films like Cypher, Cube, Closetland, Final Approach, Altered States, Oldboy, Identity, and this movie is right up there with those kinds of movies. Check it out, and don't let it fool you from the start into thinking its going to be like so many other weak Hospital Horror films as it builds its environment. And you might even want to lookup the soundtrack too. Im going to do that next. Have Fun!
OMG.. Style over Substance
No movie I think illustrates the example of Style over Substance moreso I think than than this movie. Its a common trait it seems among Asian cinema to throw in flash with no substance at all. Yes I know Hollywood does this too, but it seems to me that 9/10 Asian films that have great special FX have terrible writing and the same goes for so much Anime. (not knocking all Asian films Oldboy is one of my favs!)
OK first off, I cannot at all knock the direction, cinematography, and FX in this movie. They are all superb.
Now with that said. Everything else is pure DRECK! I mean its so bad you have to turn your brain off COMPLETELY. This movie has the cheesiest villain in it, I've ever seen.. Right up ther with the villain in Final Fantasy - Spirits Within.
"If I can't use this weapon, It's JUNK!" like a child who tosses away a toy because he can't figure it out. Why did he ever expect to figure it out.. ITS ALIEN! He gambled his whole organization on the hunch that he could just magically use an alien ship to take over the world. God what an idiot. And many times did I count in this movie when Hero - Villain come face to face and don't shoot each other? About 5/6 times?! Then there's this great ability that nobody seems to realize they have. The hero's can slow down time, seemingly anytime they want. But they use this ability maybe 3 times in the whole movie, and use it in the dumbest ways I could imagine.
They didn't even try to write in a simple contrivance that explains the power might be limited in some way, or only had so much energy. No they just ignored all logic and just didn't use it. Like the characters just Forget they have this godly power.
Then there's the Aliens which hardly serve any purpose in the whole movie accept to show us a few great transforming effects. And finally there's this ending with the girl disappearing. WHY? Oh.. she's going back into the future now. What a great time machine! It just knows that your job is complete so it starts slowing making you disappear and reappear in the future. How nice of it to do that! More like, your disappearing because perhaps you erased your future self and altered your future so that you were never born. But hey go ahead and believe that the future is looking out for you always and now its programmed to bring you back safely.
This has got to be a show for young kids because Nobody over the age of 12 would not find this movie utterly ridiculous.
God please teach film producers to look at hireing decent writers! They are Much More Important to a good movie, than Director, Actor, FX!