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Forever Knight: Last Knight (1996)
Season 3, Episode 22
4/10
So this is how it all ends?
22 January 2017
Warning: Spoilers
To me, there are at least 5 main episodes of this season that, I feel, is hard not to have a strong negative reaction from me "Blackwing", "Human Factor", "Hearts Of Darkness", "Fever" and finally this. Now, don't get me wrong, there were some good episodes this season - for example, I personally feel Francesca is brilliant - but with that said, this is an episode that literally every other episode before was building up to. Nick was on a quest to become human. Its something that each episode was trying to achieve despite it being "episodic TV" (this was before season long story arcs were a popular thing) and the initial reaction is...this did NOT stick the landing.

This episode starts off with a suicide which happened to not only be one of Natalie's friends but a Psychiatrist. Nick tries his best to comfort her but, more than ever, she feels the pointlessness of life rearing its head. Nick tries to talk her out of suicide even though he's tried it before and he tries desperately to make sure it all works out. She then tries to speed up Nick trying to gain his mortality via that "making love while feeding" plot point from "Human Factor" (and...you just HAD to resurrect my least favourite plot point of the entire series in the finale, didn't you?!). After seeing Tracy Vetter die, with her last words "you could've said something" (referring to his vampirism...and yes, that IS a plothole in this season) Nick accepts Natalie's offer and feeds to try and regain his mortality for her.

Lacroix has decided to leave town but before he leaves Nick tells him about the ideal of contemplating suicide. The episode actually starts off with this monologue he gives about how you shouldn't trade treasure for an empty box which is actually one of Nigel Bennett's best deliveries on this show. With that said, considering the last episode was a bloodbath of cast members and regulars on this show and the fact he...just killed a potential love interest he doesn't see the point. So guess what? The episode ends on a cliffhanger with Nick giving Lacroix a stake. So basically this episode ends with Nick most likely dying, Natalie dead, Nick's partner dead (AGAIN! But not like Lacroix) and the only survivors being the guy who died in the pilot story only to come back with no explanation and the police chief who, if this show had a season 4, would've been replaced anyway. So literally no one on this show hasn't died.

Okay, here is something the writers clearly didn't notice while making this, regardless of that Lacroix monologue, this may be the most pro-suicide thing I've ever seen! No, this episode actually does reflect on a LOT of the preceding episodes and how did the writers think it'd look when the overall message they wanted to leave the show on was "humanity is bullshit, you may as well kill yourself". It wouldn't be much if there was something else but considering this is the finale, its just a punch in the gut to everything that came before. The other thing has nothing to do with anything but...the episode before this involved Lacroix's master coming back and killing off vampires he knew one by one that was so powerful she was only able to be defeated via being so distracted with hurting Lacroix that Nick killed her, that really would've been a fitting end to this season in the long run.

Okay, onto the good, the acting is all top notch for this show, seeing some of the old episodes was a good way to get us invested in what happened, there were shocking turns as well as a mystery element to what Nick actually ends up deciding which, if I am to be honest, is a bit of a no win situation for these writers. If they decided to keep him a vampire for potential sequel series', we'd feel cheated that all of that was pointless, if they made him human...he's just a human being like everyone else. A Daywalker is probably the only justifiable means to an end but don't tell me how they'd do that.

Overall, this is a rather crummy way to end the show but its not awful. It certainly has its moments that make it satisfy in some areas but WILDLY dissatisfy in others. If your a fan I just say what I think on this.
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Forever Knight: The Human Factor (1996)
Season 3, Episode 16
1/10
Probably the worst episode
13 January 2017
I know how this'll sound to most Forever Knight fans with this claim. I know you can point to episodes that are worse in their own individual respect like "Blackwing" or something like that but...this episode calls into question some pretty pivotal things such as Janette's character from seasons 1 and 2, Natalie and Nick's "on again off again" relationship and even Nick's centuries long quest to become a mortal man. Yes, the driving force for the entire show is placed into question from just this one episode. Be very afraid.

So the episode starts out with a man getting shot by Janette. The homicide cops are called in and the only witness to the crime identifies Janette. Nick tries to keep this under wraps and finds Janette at his apartment, begging for his help to clear the name of a man she's fallen in love with. Janette, the character that I always saw as the personification of Nick's desire to still remain a vampire, fell in love with a man. For anyone reading, do I HAVE to explain how thats dumb? It actually gets even worse, she's now mortal (as seen via getting shot by some thugs that were starting fires to somehow promote real estate...I'm dead serious) and when asked by Nick and Natalie how she became mortal...apparently all you need is to love someone and feed off them while your having sex and the more times you do this, the less blood you'll need and eventually - mortal. So...all Nick had to do...for these last 62 episodes of TV - 46 and a half HOURS of television - was to have sex with someone he had the hots for, Natalie let me just assume, and feed every time he did it. I actually don't understand how people can watch that explanation play out on screen and NOT be angry that the writing was THAT stupid. I guess Janette coming back was enough "fanboy goggles" for people to just ignore that this episode outright mocked the entire setup of the series.

So her human lover was killed by said real estate thugs, she tried to bring him across and that just happened to be the point where she realized she was mortal (how dramatically convenient) and she now seeks revenge, not just for herself, but for that guy's son who she's adopted. While I'm here, I forgot to tell you how she and this guy met. Janette was just in a burning building and he saved her - she has the power to fly and move at the speed of sound and yet she needed a man to save her...THIS IS IDIOTIC!

So the real estate thugs kidnap Janette's adoptive son and her biological aunt who he was staying with the whole time this was going down and try to tease her out of some incriminating evidence that could put them away. They light the house on fire, kill Janette and with her dying breath she asks Nick to free the kid and the aunt. Do you know why THAT aspect doesn't work? I never caught the kid or the aunt's names. So, to whoever wrote this episode, I know its been 21 years and all but...who did you think we'd really care for? Two characters I can barely remember or one of my favourite goddamn characters on the show that you gave a death less dignified than if she got that Vampire Aids thing from a few episodes earlier! (yeah...can someone explain to me what the hell happened to the writers this season?)

So the thugs are killed by vampire bites (inflicted by Lacroix...honestly, knowing his character, I'm amazed they got off that lightly - also I would've preferred it if the identity of that vampire was kept ambiguous like maybe Nick DID bring Janette across, maybe Lacroix did it or maybe Nick did it - no, that would not seem out of character to me) and we see Nick and Lacroix talk in front of a portrait of Janette, they talk a bit and Nick ponders his loss.

This episode certainly isn't as head slapping as Blackwing nor is it necessarily written worse but in terms of where the show had been and gone, how can I react to this outside of disgust. Now, don't get me wrong, there are a few things I like here. Its great to see Janette again and there were a few times wherein it felt like Nick was racing against the clock to try and help one of his oldest friends get the man she loved off the hook of this conspiracy while also trying to stay one step ahead of his colleagues but when you spit on the entire basis of the show, how can that really measure up? Maybe when I decide to marathon the show, I'll watch it again and see if it holds up any better but as it stands...my GOD is this episode overrated!
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Forever Knight: Blackwing (1995)
Season 3, Episode 4
1/10
Oh Dear God!
10 January 2017
Okay, before anyone starts, I LOVE Forever Knight. I think its probably one of the best vampire shows of all time - even with the problems in the third season being a bit more noticeable than in seasons 2 or 1 - but I really can't defend this episode. Neither can fans either. I already looked at the rating for this on IMDb and this is considered to be the worst episode by fans with a 5.3. For a TV show, that is pathetic. The second worst is "Forward Into The Past" and...that episode had problems but I didn't hate it anywhere near as much as this.

Okay, now I've got that over and done with lets start with the plot - a Native American healing man (I guess - he can walk the "spirit plain" and was said to have powers) is murdered while on said spirit walk and his granddaughter was dreaming it while he was also in said walk. Is the show saying meditational trances are real or is it just a lazy plot device for whats to come? YOU PICK! So they investigate the murder and find that they're in the centre of this dispute with a shopping mall, or something - honestly I really didn't and couldn't care any less, is being built over Native American land. Look, I've never met a Native American but I'm willing to bet that the historical tensions between their people and other Americans goes a bit deeper than land. What about...the slaughter of literally millions of their people? What about forced cultural segregation if they did not follow the "white man's path"? Or how about stolen children raised away from their families in cultural abuse just because of their race? Anyway, that is a WHOLE other can of worms. The murdered Grandfather (who, by the way, is called Gary Blackwing) was on said comitee for the protest so, naturally, someone on the side wanting to build wants them dead so nothing can jeopardize it.

The granddaughter actually begins to sense Nick's dark past and actually does a spirit walk with him and even performs a ritual to get the "darkness" out. He then starts to get flashes of other murders taking place in much the same way the first one did, except this time, people on the comittee FOR the building of the mall. Nick starts to believe that this is him doing the murders but...why would he kill Gary Blackwing then? Neither he, nor the actual murderer did! It turns out that what Nick had happen was Marian (Gary Blackwing's granddaughter) took away the aspect of Nick that actually wanted to kill and so she's following the urge...now it all makes sense...well, except for who killed Gary Blackwing? And how the hell anyone was able to do that? I'll state it, magic was never introduced up to this point. Just vampirism. It really IS out of place because its like "even though this religion DOES actually have deities that exist that can literally take the killer instinct out of someone, we didn't think it was worth bringing up until you were around 50 hours into watching the show" (don't get me started on the episode that decides that a demon should possess Nick and he has an exorcism) So it turns out one of the lawyers killed Gary Blackwing after attempting to kill his brother, Nick saves the brother just in time and his granddaughter gives Nick back his power and those other murders...are probably going to be pinned on the other guy and everything wraps up god awful.

There is no real word to describe this episode. It was actually a bit of a shock to me because while previous episodes had their faults, the worst they ever got was "boring". This was just awful. Nothing really makes sense, nothing really seems to get accomplished and its treatment of Native Americans is so one note that its actually hard to believe this episode came out in 1995 and was directed by the same man who did the pilot episode.

Look, for any newcomers to this show, you probably would've worked out by now that episodes don't REALLY impact the outcome of another episode (there are exceptions to that) but you can skip this over. You'll be saved 40 minutes of screaming into a pillow on how dumb everything is.
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4/10
This is JUST BORING!
2 November 2016
Warning: Spoilers
Okay, I love Ginger Snaps, its my 2nd favourite film of all time and it tops a great deal of many of my "favourites" list (such as favourite horror film, favourite werewolf film, favourite "teenage misfit" film) so for Halloween, I decided to marathon the series and...when playing this back to back with the first film, the problems really do show.

Now, if anyone here has read my new review for Ginger Snaps 2, you may be aware of this but both sequels have pretty big problems that carry over, this, I feel, could've been avoided had they either a) consulted John Fawcett and Karen Walton on this instead of Fawcett just being the guy who gave them the money they needed to do the film or b) waited between sequels so they could see how the first sequel did and knew what to fix. The first, these sequels are boring. They don't have character development, the plots are almost strung together and, of course, the second problem, they change the mythology, the second film made it so instead of it being about puberty, it'd be about drug addiction. Considering The Company Of Wolves exists, I understand why making a movie set in the 19th century about werewolf puberty wouldn't REALLY fly but I gotta admit, I don't get what THIS metaphor is. Ginger sleeps a lot, hears blood and is found out by leeches...thinking it over, I think they just REALLY wanted to make a bad vampire film but was roped into the whole "forced trilogy" thing. The third, the characters are idiots. Sorry to spoil the ending so early in my review but the native American gives Brigitte over to the people at the fort who are more than happy to burn her alive for her "sin" of having a werewolf sister and yet, when Ginger leads a pack of werewolves into the fort, the Native American looks surprised when Brigitte stabs him to become a werewolf with her sister, her sister that is commented on frequently as being the only "thing" she has left.

So the movie opens up with Brigitte and Ginger (the NOT characters from the first and second film, I'm actually a bit grateful for this as you're not really RUINING any of these characters if they turn out to be idiots) coming across an attacked Indian tribe with one survivor who prophecizes to kill a boy or one will kill the other. Considering what I wrote above, I'm not sure yet whether that was a "clever twist ending" or promising the audience something and then flat out lying to them. Brigitte then gets her foot trapped in a bear trap. A Native American (the one described in the previous paragraph) helps her out and takes her to Fort Bailey, we then come across...stereotypes of movies like this. There's the well-intentioned Doctor, the angry Priest, the defensive fort owner trying to keep a grip on everything (but sabotages himself in a way I'll come back to a little later), the angry misogynistic racist guard (he's also the only character to be blatantly racist apart from the priest...thanks for realism!) and..."the others". I'm not joking, thats their development.

So after realizing the fort is full of crazies, Brigitte and Ginger get worried but decide to stay because a bed is better than a log under a tree. Ginger, however, goes wandering in the night and finds a deformed boy who bites her...this is the son of the "defensive fort owner trying to keep a grip on everything"...a werewolf. So...he could've bit everyone in their sleep and the Fort would've descended into a bloody mess? A werewolf attack happens, a few people get bit and the priest is all too eager to blame the Fitzgerald's and he traps them in a room with a werewolf. This lasts...a few minutes until the Native American saves them. Oh and by the way, a quick note, sorry about demoting the characters to just the stereotypes I just mentioned but...that IS the only way I remember them.

The deformed boy escapes and Ginger tries to kill it to follow the Native American's prophecy. The rest of the fort find him first and the leader kills his kid to show authority. They kick the Fitzgerald's out because it becomes all too clear that Ginger has been bit. They seek out the Native American that warned them about the prophecy, she explains that Ginger should've killed the boy before it bit her (to paraphrase the first film "How was she supposed to know that?!") and they make Brigitte go into a trance to see the future and it shows her killing Ginger and from there, the other Native American takes her to the fort to partake in the ending I described earlier. Honestly though, its a good ending. Its the highlight scene in these sprequels. Brigitte then becomes a werewolf ala hand wound used to parallel the first film.

This film, I thought, was better than the second. Why? Its not REALLY a Ginger Snaps movie. I see this as basically what would happen if the rights to Ginger Snaps went to Roger Corman and he wanted to put his own unique spin on the film. On those merits, its not awful but the problem is its boring. Something like this should, at least, have a "base under siege" feel to it (a group of people trapped in a building, or fort, trying to fight the monsters with a group of red shirts and then death, death, death, death). This has NONE of the paranoia that you'd associate with that (or if it does, its not written well). The werewolf transformation isn't interesting, the characters are virtually just stereotypes and the plot just isn't interesting enough to carry itself. I'll say, though, the two leads did somewhat make this interesting to watch but aside from that, nothing.
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3/10
Oh boy, does this not hold up.
1 November 2016
Warning: Spoilers
If anyone has read my reviews in whole, or read my lists, you'd probably latch onto the fact that I'm a pretty big Ginger Snaps fan. Its my 2nd favourite film of all time and it shaped a lot of characteristics in who I am today. So I decided, this Halloween, since it had been years since I saw this and "Ginger Snaps Back" that I'd marathon the films and...it definitely shows off the problems between films. Is that fair? For this film, yes. Its a direct continuation of the first film and thus, the problems should not have been AS prominent as they are here.

Now if you want to know both sequels suffer from 3 common problems - problems that could've been avoided had they just waited between sequels as opposed to farting them both out at the same time in the hopes of making money off their film that had just gained a cult status. The problems are that, firstly, both films are boring, a lot of that has to do with scripting and character development but one of the things that makes sure both films aren't interesting is the second problem, they change the werewolf mythology! This is a sign these movies pretty much doomed themselves. This film changed the metaphor so instead of it being about puberty, its about drug addiction...while it takes place in a drug rehabilitation clinic! Now imagine, if you will, a junkie that had just joined said clinic, as soon as her drugs were taken away, she becomes overly violent and overly sexual while still trying to make her case that she's "better now". NOW imagine that due to the nature of her imprisonment, she starts talking to thin air thats supposed to be the apparition of her dead sister? But, yeah, what they did here was better! The third problem is the characters are all idiots. Ghost taunts Brigitte and starts asking her questions about werewolfism that, quite frankly, would make people more hostile towards her as opposed to working with her (I'm talking about the "when you close your eyes is it hell you see?") and Brigitte...trusts...her. Mind you, everyone being stupid is something I'd extend to the medical staff - Alice, the head of the clinic, just takes Brigitte OFF the monkshood, something that a line of dialogue actually openly admits is poison, and never once considers withdrawal? The psychologists staff in a Nightmare On Elm Street 3 could be Freud compared to these idiots!

Okay, so, lets begin analysing, the film takes place a couple of years after the first, Brigitte is on the run from this rogue werewolf that wants to have sex with her and despite the fact they claim Monkshood is just a regressor that just holds the werewolfism at bay, it is NOT Jason McCarthy from the first film who was last seen in the film, being forced to take the drug at the hands of Brigitte - the people behind this outright stated that. After an attack by this werewolf, she wanders the streets after overdosing on monkshood only to be found in a drug rehabilitation clinic. She's mocked by some of the other inmates for "sucking at suicide" (because a DRUG ADDICT WOULD NEVER CONSIDER SUICIDE!...I'm sorry, what?) and is quickly deemed a trouble maker after she insists on having her monkshood back. Then there are scenes where she...befriends a girl there called Ghost and then...probably the most embarrassing scene in the entire series takes place, a scene that was meant to show her "sexual awakening" to tear everything to pieces. In the first film, this was shown with Ginger becoming a sexual teen and trying to have sex with Jason only to...sort of rape him and then she killed a dog. In this film her sexual awakening takes place of a multiple person masturbation scene wherein one of the doctors there describes the sexual pleasure of "ripping flesh". No, you did NOT read that wrong.

After Brigitte continues to descent into "wolf madness" she escapes with Ghost after also finding out that the werewolf from before is near. Then the film, quite frankly, just stops for a bit to pad out Ghost being a "surrogate sister" to Brigitte to replace Ginger. Considering the description of her I gave above, I'm not going to state how thats just dumb and move on.

Brigitte then descends more into wolf mode and asks an orderly who exchanges drugs with the girls there for sexual favours for her monkshood back...never ONCE taking into account she KNOWS where to but it (described in this film as "any craft store") and she SAW SAM MAKE IT IN THE FIRST FILM! And after that goes wrong, she decides to face the wolf that had been stalking her and at this point I realized something about that plot point - it was only in the film to make it more interesting. There is no dramatic weight because its not Jason McCarthy and we're never told who the wolf is or HOW it was made! Now, to a point I DID fix this with a fan fiction I wrote years ago but...that doesn't matter! I shouldn't need to write fan fiction to "fix" the bare bones of character development that was just never given in this film.

So it turns out Ghost, who taunted Brigitte for the first quarter of the film, couldn't be trusted! Brigitte tries to attack her, the wolf runs in, Alice is killed by Ghost (with all the emotional impact of finding out you just ran out of popcorn) and the film ends with Brigitte being locked up in Ghost's basement to kill again.

Okay, this film had some pretty cool ideas and the plot DOES manage to open up the wiggle room for the sequel that the first film, I thought, didn't really need but the problem is none of that really goes anywhere, simply, it just doesn't work.
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3/10
While I liked it as a kid...not so much any more.
18 September 2016
Warning: Spoilers
Okay, so, where to properly start with this film? I saw it a lot as a kid and thought it was funny. Some jokes still SORT OF work (ala "what does that man think he's doing with his hands on MY Labia?" - Labia in this case being the name of a character). However...I will try to judge this fairly and even as its aged, this movie is...not good.

The movie is about an employee to one of the biggest film distributors in Australia. He decides he's not happy with the stuff he's making and decides to quit to open up a theater that hasn't been opened since the mid 60s. He decides to open it up via airing the last movie that it showed - which happens to be Ercole, Sansone, Maciste e Ursus gli invincibili...which is in Italian without any subtitles (due to his former boss trying to sabotage the competition...how the biggest film distributor in Australia would fail to a small theater in Melbourne is anyone's guess!). So they decide to dub it. Which is as dumb as all hell due to just how much work Foley artists actually do. Getting it all right in one take would be impossible. I know "just turn off your brain" but for a plot where I can describe EVERYTHING in the film within one paragraph, suspension of disbelief on par with a group of average minded people managing to build a fully functional time machine...in 1485 should not be required here.

Why is THAT important? Its the only thing that links the first 30 minutes to the rest of the film (I'm not joking about that) and it really isn't the best way. Why the hell couldn't it just be a cheap dubbing studio or something? Sure, the film would have no plot but as is, it only has a plot for less than a third of a 70 minute film! Literally! Also, the movie ends with the film being a hit among critics and audiences (despite none of them really questioning the 90s pop culture references made in the 60s). Now, I know the film isn't exactly the most well known of the genre but wouldn't SOMEONE notice the dubbing quality in universe of the filmed parts? Then the movie ends with a female employee with cartoonish strength punching the said head of biggest film distributor in Australia...how the movie ends with a party and not the heroes becoming homeless is anyone's guess!

However, thats not the part that most people remember about the film - its the actual dubbing of Ercole, Sansone, Maciste e Ursus gli invincibili...a movie originally marketed as a comedy. So, dubbing this for comedic effect is already pointless as, the original film was ALREADY made to make you laugh. Not only that but...it fails for the same reason most think the Sharknado movies fail. There are literally a TONNE of bad dubs out there (look for anything anime around this time - Let The Right One In, Stalingrad, to name a few) and what makes bad dubs or bad movies appealing is if they went out actually TRYING to make a good dub or good movie and f*cked it up. The way this movie works is *drop trou and takes a crap* "Tell me what that is" "Its a crap." Bravo, the silly dub is silly...why is THAT funny? Not only that but considering how much of the movie is in this movie versus how much of the movie is actually in the film...a third of it was cut. So even as is, Ercole, Sansone, Maciste e Ursus gli invincibili is completely misrepresented in this even if you didn't count watching this as seeing that film.

So as is, how are the jokes? Well...it mostly relies on sexual innuendos. Some of you may be aware of the Labia commented earlier in the review. There's also the fact that one of the new characters - Machismo, who isn't a flaming gay stereotype. No, he's THE flaming gay stereotype(despite the fact that Australia made "The Adventures Of Priscilla", its treatment towards homosexuals are conservative to say the least - to a point where homosexualism in this movie is played up as a joke expected to be as funny as it was in say, the 60s). There's also that a major plot that Hercules must wrestle Samson and if Hercules looses, he must marry him and there's also the name of Labia's lover in this movie...Testiculi. There's also a short character in the film called "Stretch" and finally, the name of Labia's hometown - Chlamydia. Now thats not ALL this movie has to offer in terms of humor - there's Hercules being dumb and wanting to be a Nightclub singer. As is, I don't remember much else, aside from Ursus being a bouncer that kicked everyone out of a diner, ate the food and forced the people inside to perform Olivia Newton John. He also delivers the only funny homosexual joke in the film - "I want a man" "Oh, like THAT is it nancy boy?" The thing is...I don't MIND politically incorrect humor - in the right doses its fine, however, what I have a problem with is "What about that exotic dancer that does the thing with the vaccum cleaner" "But she sucks!" just doesn't really make me laugh.

So...if that sounds like your sort of movie, go ahead. However...while I don't hate this movie as much as this review would lead you to believe, I still don't like the film. The reason I still like SOME of it is because of nostalgia still holding up in SOME places. The reason why I don't...well, read the review again. So if you're interested, watch but I would officially say "watch a dub that tried to be good but failed" instead.
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9/10
A sequel that improves on the original
6 April 2016
Warning: Spoilers
So far, I think the Terrance Zdunich/Darren Lynn Bousman writer/director combo is just great with its musicals. I adore Repo! The Genetic Opera and I really liked the original Devil's Carnival in spite of its faults. So I was fired up about this film like you wouldn't believe. However, the problem I had with that is that I originally saw The Devil's Carnival through a friend and I had tried on and off ever since to try and find the original and had no luck, but with both movies just recently being sold on iTunes I bought both movies without even thinking twice. And...yeah, this is a much better movie than its predecessor.

Okay, in the original film it ended with The Devil deciding to start a war with God after he found out he could forgive everyone of their sins "cheaply" and send them to Heaven. In the first film it primarily focused on Hell. This film decides to focus on Heaven and is a pseudo prequel to the first and focuses on the character origins of Painted Doll (aka Emilie Autumn). One of the problems this movie has is that I really wish it tried to tell the origins of a few of the demonic characters and how they fell...for example, imagine hearing the origins of The Twin or Hobo Clown. At double the running time of the original film, it had every chance to make that happen. As is, however...it just feels like Bousman showcasing Emilie's talent and saying "Yes, I CAN make a credible musical with her in it" in preparation for her own musical "The Asylum For Wayward Victorian Girls". I'm ALREADY psyched up for that. This movie doesn't need that angle to get me excited.

So the plot is that, in preparation for the upcoming war, The Devil anticipates that Heaven would send a character called The Agent (Adam Pascal) to try and sort everything out. So he reads a story to a cloaked figure about what happened to June (Painted Doll) and how she was kicked out of Heaven. It turns out Heaven is a 1984/Bioshock world where everything looks like it came out of the 40's and a character called the Watchword (Barry Bostwick) spies on everyone for sins that could send them to Hell and each inhabitant has to assume a job with actual higher ups in Heaven comparing it to Noah's Ark.

One thing that I SHOULD warn people about though is remember how I said that the last film had ended with The Devil preparing to start a war with God...the farthest we ever get in this film is the first attack. I don't mind that as we had to at least see Heaven first but, for those that want the epic war of the afterlife...you'll just have to wait for Devil's Carnival 3 for that.

There is one thing in this film that actually helps one of the biggest problems in the previous film - in the last film a girl called Tamra was sent to Hell for trusting too much...seriously. This film helps that out by saying that the God in this world is a knifing prick with double agendas and manipulating people into feeling worse about themselves, even if they've done nothing wrong (he asks The Agent to watch over June and seduce her and there's no other way to see it other than he KNEW that she'd take that forbidden book - the one with the apple on the cover...yes, seriously - and be sent to Hell)...so, this goes without saying, if your religiously catholic, don't watch this because, I guarantee you, you WILL get offended. Me personally...I think its an interesting take on religion, to tell you the truth. I'm neither one way or another when it comes to religious beliefs but making God out like that, while it has been done before, its quite interesting.

So...considering this is a musical, how are the songs? Again, this has been improved since the last film. The song "Hoof And Lap" has been stuck in my head for days! "Fair Game" is also a much better song for The Twin as a character to be showcased in than "Beautiful Stranger" (although honestly I like both songs) and as far as I can remember, the only really bad song in this movie is "The Watchdogs Hour" (sorry Barry...you can't sing anymore!) whereas the original had at the very least two - "The Devil's Carnival" (which is briefly in Hoof And Lap and works a lot better there) and "Kiss The Girls" which appears in a sequence thats entirely pointless and for a 55 minute film...thats impressive. Also, considering we get a lot more songs from both Heaven and Hell, they both have their own distinct sounds which is something I admire as it would be easy to make them both sound alike in each and every way.

Overall, this movie is definitely not for everyone and I may be bias in saying this but...I really liked it and I'd love to see more from this film series. If your interested in a musical that does everything it can to try and push boundaries in how they're made, and you happen to be a fan of Repo!, I'd suggest checking it out but if none of the above sounds like your cup of tea...I'd seriously suggest giving the entire series a miss.
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3/10
Not exactly a worth successor to the original.
29 February 2016
Warning: Spoilers
I only recently discovered Elvira through the first film - Elvira Mistress Of The Dark. Honestly, it was entertaining enough to warrant my buying a DVD of the show (which includes "The Satanic Rites Of Dracula" and "The Werewolf Of Washington"). So I went ahead and watched the sequel...sort of...and...this movie only holds up due to its ideas!

So what are these ideas? Okay, its a spoof of Roger Corman movies, particularly the Edgar Allan Poe ones he did (not specifically stated but with the Pit and the Pendulum scene, its hard not to miss) where Elvira and her maid are in 1851 (as far as setup goes, a movie about a horror host being set before films were even invented isn't the strangest thing on display here) and short on money. So they hitch a ride with a Dr Bradley Bradley whose on his way to Castle Hellsubus. While there, everyone remarks on how much Elvira looks like Lady Hellsubus who committed suicide some 10 years earlier and was the first wife of our villain Vladimir Hellsubus (I'm not spoiling that he's the villain...just read the name he's got. He's played by Richard O'Brien. How do you not IMMEDIATELY see that he's the villain just from my review?).

As a setup goes, thats not awful. In fact, I'd say its close to damn near inspired. Having someone famous for making fun of bad movies being in a self aware bad movie. It doesn't even go over the top with the premise like Sharknado does in a desperate "WE KNOW THIS IS CRAP! LAUGH!" over and over. As for the other elements that are good - Richard O'Brien is probably the most chuckles you'll get from this but only because he looks like he's having way too much fun with the part (and honestly, Richard Chamberlain backing out and being replaced with O'Brien probably saved the film an extra star). The costumes and set designers can be very proud of themselves. It looked and felt like a classic B-movie while still being a...modern B-movie.

So whats bad? Well, all of the above would work if the jokes were written with any form of subtlety. I know I just said "It doesn't even go over the top with the premise" but that was the premise, not the actual humor of the film. Things like one liners about modern pop culture that aren't even funny just detract the entire film. For those that haven't seen it, allow me to demonstrate by quoting some lines that are actually in the film:

"The village people say this house is haunted" "Who listens to The Village People anymore?"

"Shut up! What are you trying to do? Go for an Oscar"

"Heeeeeeeerrrrrrreeeee's Johan!"

The whole FILM is filled with references like that! Its no less funny when you watch it than when you read it.

Even if you took the references out, the jokes aren't as "on form" as Mistress Of The Dark. Why? The music score. Now that'll immediately warrant the reaction "how could something like the music score impact on the delivery of jokes?" Well, you know in cartoons where the people behind it play goofy as hell music when they're warranting a laugh or even just to get the audience ready for "something funny is gonna happen."? This film does that in every scene. Literally. I counted. The jokes aren't even on form enough to warrant that. So what we have here is a music score trying too hard to be a cartoon with jokes that aren't even funny enough to carry the film.

As for the technical stuff outside of "costumes" and "sets"...oh god. The visual effects in this film are awful. Its mostly done with CGI...CGI in a film that had the overall budget of $1.5 million. I know Cassandra Peterson had to finance the film mostly all on her own but the visual effects in the 80's movie look a million times better and this came out some 13 years after. Hell the Sylvester McCoy Doctor Who intro looks better. Maybe you could say my judgement of the visual effects aren't great considering what was in the budget but needless to say, no matter what eye you look at it through, the CGI doesn't look good. Some of the more practical things like the Pit and the Pendulum, the iron maiden being closed in on people and the corpses all look fine though. Which is rather weird.

Whats sad about the film is that the quality of the writing this time around is the single biggest blunder of the film. If this was given a few more drafts, who knows how much longer the series could've gone on for? It could've spoofed so many genres. Maybe the series would have subtlety...okay, thats impossible. But you get what I mean. This film series is, in general, supposed to be fun and yet, the failure of this film sank all chances of it, or any other film in the series, getting another film.

As for everything else I didn't mention, its all on my very strong opinion of..."not great not horrible".

So my final thoughts? Yeah, this movie is bad but its mostly just "dumb sequel bad". Even then, I've seen plenty of bad sequels that are far worse than this (this wouldn't even break my top 30) and I got some entertainment here and there with a few jokes that worked but thats the killer part - "a few". A lot of the problems are just too great for me to fully enjoy it enough to even consider it "okay". So check it out if you're interested but...just be prepared to not fully enjoy it.
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I loved it.
22 February 2016
Emilie Autumn is a music artist who has, in her own fanbase, been met with two sides either they love everything she does and think she's wonderful OR...they believe she's lying about everything she "portrays". Honestly, (as a quick review of her music in general), I'm in the middle of this. Sure she's over the top and over dramatic but thats all part of her style. She's sarcastic with her lyrics (don't believe me, listen to "Thank God I'm Pretty" or "Marry Me"...and one reviewer thought she was serious with the level of feminism said in this video). However, in all three of her singing albums, she's redefined everything about herself both musically and how she looks. The only similarity is that it should sound weird - all the albums I've heard sound weird. Yay.

Anyway, I have read the other two reviews for this video and honestly, I felt as though my 2 cents needed to go into this video. Firstly, I have been a junkie for Darren Lynn Bousman's music stuff ever since I saw Repo! The Genetic Opera (in fact, I discovered Emilie's music through the first Devil's Carnival movie) and while I was still putting my toe in the water, so to speak, I discovered this was her only music video. While its not going to break my personal top 10 music videos of all time, I enjoyed it.

Okay, firstly, the "plot", its a performance clip where it attacks the romanticism of insanity, conformity, anti-feminism and all with a sarcastic touch to everything (ie, what other feminist anthem would have bisexual curiosity in its video? The "Asylum girls" are forced to perform on stage and they were all forced to wear the same clothes until Emilie changed it. Sounds like romanticism of insanity to me. That last one also doubles up as her attacking conformity), so I have to ask what the other reviewers were expecting because thats everything Emilie Autumn is. Am I biased? Maybe, but even with a fair playing field, the question still stands. Its like getting upset in a Nikki Minaj music video because she wore short shorts and drew attention to her ass for 4 and a half minutes. Now do *I* like Nikki Minaj? No! But getting mad at doing everything she promised she'd do is rather pointless in my eyes.

If you want me to be moderate with this clip though and not immediately downplay two other reviewers on the site, I am well aware Emilie's music and stlye isn't for everyone so I can definitely see why they don't like it. Onto legit flaws, there's one question; when its the video set? The Victorian Era? Well, no because at the end when they're performing and got rid of the audience, they bring in a new one a lot more appreciative of the music all in modern alternative clothes. I know they were fans that Emilie selected but the budget didn't stretch far enough to get them in Victorian era dress? There's also a scene where, to distract the audience they have from the delay for the girls, the Asylum Revue dress up some of the men there as women. Its fitting for the song with the lyric "even if you're only a boy you can fight like a girl" and they throw cabbage at them. Its just...look how many times the cabbage is thrown but never hits anything or anyone. There's that and, this clip is generally about the girls breaking free and killing all those who oppressed them, it really should've been a music video for "Time For Tea".

So thats "Emilie Autumn's Fight Like A Girl" or "FLAG" for short, its literally everything you'd expect from Emilie. Its also a good enough place to start if you want to see more of her work. However this isn't one of her best songs. Hell, I could literally pick 10 different songs off that album alone that are better fits for music videos, but for what it is, its a well done representation of who Emilie is and what her style is. So, if you're interested go watch it.
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Forever Knight: If Looks Could Kill (1993)
Season 1, Episode 19
10/10
So far, my favourite episode of Forever Knight
17 February 2016
Warning: Spoilers
Recently I just got into this show and in general, I've heard its basically "Angel 2.0" but as far as I'm concerned...this show is overall the much better show! The idea of a vampire wanting to become human is nothing new, I'll admit to that, but this show takes it in another direction entirely - to give him a job as a cop so he sees both the very best and very worst of humanity. Seriously, this episode is only the 5th episode I've come across that actually has vampires in it outside of Nick and the occasional appearance of Lacroix and Jeanette.

Anyway, the plot involves a woman (who I'll call Norma because...that was her name) who shot a store beautician and was shot herself for stealing some makeup. Nick tries to inform the relatives, being upset because its a sad reality of what humanity has to deal with, to try and 'beautify' themselves. When Natalie does Norma's autopsy, she finds that she's has aged 30 something years in the 2 hours since she was in the morgue. We then see the same sort of violent behavior from two other people that worked at a spa where Norma worked (who I'll call Agnus and Bernice).

While this is all going on Nick has flashbacks to a woman who asked him to turn her into a vampire to stop her own aging, who was turned by Jeanette. Unlike most episodes though, these flashbacks are absolutely, no mistake whatsoever, 100 per cent necessary for the episode.

Anyway, Agnus is arrested for her violent outburst and requests a "Dr Jergen". Meanwhile Nick looks for Bernice who, herself, has aged 20 years in the few hours since he last saw her and it turns out that "Dr Jergen" is the woman from the flashbacks and she's been giving them vampire blood. Her blood. Bernice comes to the realization to just "let age happen" and Agnus is accidentally killed by Schanke and the vampire who did this realizes the collossal mistake she did (although, one flaw with the episode is that we never see her pay for the crime she committed).

Okay, whats good here? Where do I start? Firstly, the episode's subject matter, while rather course, is a very easy one to attack. The idea of women who just want to be beautiful rapidly aging with no control over it whatsoever holds amazing emotional weight considering these people, regardless of what you'd believe, aren't really bad people in any way, they're just desperate. When it comes to body image being portrayed on the small screen, I've never seen it done so well in anything else I've seen. The acting is all superb with the cast regulars (who I'd often say are either hit or miss with a general board of "eh?" as acting) are ALL at the top of their game and the guest stars are all fantastic. They even portray addiction in this episode (which was done before on this show in an episode I'd call complete crap "Feeding The Beast") and the idea of a woman, not even in her 30's, just letting herself age 50 years is probably one of the most perfect, bittersweet endings they could've had. You understand why she eventually gave up, but you also feel incredibly sorry for her and her situation, no matter how happy she seemed at the end of the episode. And I still haven't written every reason why this episode is my favourite.

Whats bad? Not much else besides that. There's a scene where a personal trainer gets one of the women to work out more which accidentally comes off as a rape scene, they make jokes about Schanke being accidentally attracted to a 15 year old girl in a makeup ad (...creepy much?!) and, of course, as I mentioned earlier, we never see the villain of the episode get whats coming to her. Did she kill herself knowing she inflicted upon them what she herself feared? Did she get arrested and watch an early morning sunrise? Did Nick kill her? Any one of these would've been a satisfying end.

So overall, this, to me, is a perfect representation of what this show is. Seeing humanity through the eyes of a being that has seen us make the same mistakes over and over. In something like personal beauty, this show couldn't have hoped for a better episode. My overall reaction is definitely check this one out.
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David Bowie: Lazarus (2016 Video)
An Ode to Bowie (1947 - 2016)
13 February 2016
I actually followed Bowie's Vevo channel on Youtube quite considerably, since he made his comeback in 2013. I saw this in my YouTube notifications and saw it. It was before Bowie died and back then, I liked it enough but I didn't really understand its meaning in the video or the song. And...literally 2 days later, Bowie died. I reacted how most fans reacted. Then, some time later, I decided to watch the video again and...what was going on seemed more obvious now than before.

So, what did I get out of this song? Well, by the time this video came out, Bowie had only days to live. The song makes details about his life such as "when I got to New York, I was living like a King" and making details to his death itself (the "warning" that he was going to die is in the video, only when I first saw it, I waved it off as a metaphor!) and the tone is very somber. The video itself cuts between Bowie on a hospital bed as "Button Eyes" and him writing like crazy.

So what does any of that have to do with anything? If you ask me, the video and the song was his way of saying that sadly, he was dying but he also had many many more ideas that he could've written and made into songs, but simply didn't have enough time. Which, to me, makes this video all the more sad. Bowie was an evolutionary artist. Most artists of a certain time period pick out a style and stand by it. Bowie evolved, experimented and even went as far as to completely reinvent himself and his music by the decade. In the 60's he was more psychedelic, in the 70's more of a Glam Rock personality, in the 80's he became more of a ballad/dance artist, in the 90s he turned to Electronica and in the 2010's, he sort of did a "best of everything I did before" thing. With all of that in mind, seeing this great artist trying furiously to get more work out there with this song as a way of saying "I can't do any more, I want to do more but I'm dying so here's what I'll leave you with" makes it impossible for me to really even critique it on the same level as a normal music video.

So, I know this review may seem useless in retrospect considering that with his death, a majority of people may have already done this but, I'd really suggest checking it out. Its not because "if you like a great tune to jam to, you'll love this" but more...the grim nature of what I described above. The theme and overall message is so "there" that I can't even watch the video without tearing up a bit. With that in mind, you should know what to expect from this.

For David Bowie - Jan 8, 1947 - Jan 10, 2016.
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7/10
As an overall comedy...its pretty good.
1 February 2016
Warning: Spoilers
I came into this film with just the barest of knowledge on who Elvira was. I knew she was a horror host in the 80s and some of the 90s and she took off a lot more than any others did (unless you count MST3K) and...that probably would've been it. So, rather curiously and in a way that I can't really explain why, I decided to watch this to get a firm foundation for her character and maybe her show. In the end, it was quite an enjoyable little film.

Okay so the plot will probably sound familiar in one way or another - A horror show host named Elvira quits her job as a horror host at a local TV station after finding out its being bought by a pervert who wants to take sexual advantage of her and wants to start up a show in Vegas but to achieve that, she has to come up with $50 000 and, by coincidence, her Great Aunt has just died and the reading of her will is in a few days in a town thats...conservative, to say the least. She is mostly treated badly from everyone there with the exceptions being the teenagers of the town and the local film theater manager, whose the love interest. And it turns out her inheritance is the house from The Munsters (no joke, its the same house!), a punk rock dog and a recipe book which her only other relative (her Great Uncle) wants to get his hands on, on the grounds that its a spell recipe book and wants to use it to become the "Master of the Dark".

Okay, whats good here? Well a lot of the jokes do hit the nail in the head, most of the time, in getting a laugh however corny they may be, its a surprisingly creative way to make a film about a horror host, all the actors do well for their parts and its great to just see the film play out. What do I mean by that? A lot of the time Elvira has a "conspiracy" planned against her by the head of the town, Chastity Pariah. Maybe its different for some people but the amount of times the supposed "moral figure" of the town proves just how insane she is and how Elvira the "harlot" is probably one of the few voices of reason in the entire film is just funny to me. My favourite scene is just as Elvira discovers she's a witch and she can do all this, the townsfolk that have all wronged her have a "morality" picnic, as a celebration of the fact that they've kept their morals and values in check. She puts in a potion she brewed up which...turns it into an orgy (well as much of an orgy as you can get from an M rating) (also, while I'm doing this, as much as it will be hard to believe, considering Elvira's reputation the whole 'turning the picnic into an orgy was completely by accident!) and the very next scene is of a town meeting where they constantly blame the other person they were with for coming on to them and being "sex crazed deviants". Again, your opinion may vary on how funny that is.

Whats bad? I'm not going to act like there isn't anything. Sometimes the fantasy sequences are a bit tedious, some of the jokes didn't quite make it with a few leaving me groaning but the worst thing, for me at least, was that after everything's done, spoiler alert, Elvira achieves her dream of going to Vegas and we see what her act is. Which goes on for 4 minutes and while the film wasn't awful by this stage my reaction was along the lines of "Movie...your over. Why are we focusing on this when its not even funny?"

So is it for everyone? No. The best way to describe this film is "imagine if Hocus Pocus (1993) and The Addams Family (1991) had a child that happened to star one of the most successful horror hosts ever". Get that image in your head, add a tonne of cheese to it (yes, even more than either of those two films had combined) and thats this movie. So if your in the right mood, go check it out.
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Redemption (II) (2007 Video)
I'm ashamed to have the same name as someone involved.
18 January 2016
As much as a post like that is unsurprising, I thought this short film was complete crap. I genuinely saw it because I share a name with one of the people involved and I wanted to see this on those grounds alone.

For starters, this movie takes missing the mark and turns it into an art form. For one, the movie is supposedly about child abuse. An interesting and ballsy subject to take on, especially in a short film. However, the entire film is a fetish film - having a kid dressed up in diapers pretty much takes up more than 8 minutes of the film. They try to keep the disguise on by having the older version of the girl narrate vague and pretentious crap like "how can a human hate so much?", its to a point where I'm not convinced she even knew they were filming a fetish film. It fails as a seriously "shocking" child abuse film due to the fact that no one is given any development as characters. This film is 16 minutes long, there's no excuse!

Now onto why this doesn't work as a fetish film, now I'm not a member of the ABDL community but the reason this doesn't work is simple - it mainly centers around a young kid. If you are aroused by this or get off to it, its pedophilia. I'm not aroused by adults wearing diapers but that is fine if you are. If no one is hurt doing it, there's no problem. However if you bring in a kid, its pedophilia. Seriously, the only reason it took me so long to review it is simple - I was afraid that I'd be accused of it.

So my overall question about this film is a simple "who the F*CK was this made for?"

If you'd like me to get off of why this film fails even the bear bones of what its disguised as AND what its trying to be, the acting is mostly awful (but nothing in this movie is really "Oscar" material writing) and the picture quality looks like crap, even by the standards of what was available for independent filmmaking in 2006 (I'm giving the picture quality the benefit of the doubt, either way, it all looks like crap). There's that AND the sound (particularly the narration) has a weird "buzzing" in the background as its being played in the film.

So my final sum up of the film is that its a movie about child abuse that secretly wants you to have the way she's punished as a fetish, everything looks like crap, everything sounds like crap and no one acts right in this movie. I ALWAYS try to be open minded to films and all as a way of saying "Maybe THIS element is well done" or "Maybe THIS could've been better"...the only way THAT could've worked for this film is if you treated it like an ACTUAL child abuse story and not just a fetish film that borderlines child porn. I literally can't recommend it to anyone so...just avoid the film as much as you can.

EDIT: Just a quick note - I have done a bit more research into the ABDL lifestyle and the "Little" community (adults who like acting like children) and I want to clear something up about this review. One of the most common mistakes people make upon judging that community is that it is a form of pedophilia. Its not. Its people who find acting like that either therapeutic or pleasurable. There is nothing wrong with that and its really not pedophilia.

With that said, I still have no idea why this film is presented as is - the girl in the film is abused and forced into regression and wearing nappies, does not want to act like a younger child and if it IS a fetish, and I'm saying this while trying not to judge people's sexual taste, why would you want to see a child wearing nappies to "get off on"? Wouldn't it be an adult you'd prefer to see? I'm not into this lifestyle but forcing someone into a fetish as punishment is absolutely horrifying and...its made even worse by the fact that its a child...THATS what I meant in this review by saying this counts as pedophilia in my mind. I hope Littles and Adult Babies/Diaper Lovers understand better when I say in this review that this is pedophilia.
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Doctor Who: Voyage of the Damned (2007)
Season 4, Episode 0
1/10
This was my first ever exposure to Doctor Who and...it turned into a LONG HIKE for me to take this show even a little seriously after this.
7 December 2015
Doctor Who is now one of my all time favorite shows (if you look on my profile and "Top 10 TV Shows" list, trust me, both Classic and New Who are there) and that owes no favors for this episode.

So the plot technically starts with a short film called Time Crash, the only fond thing about this special, because it has its own IMDb page, sucks for the rest of this special but I'll give you a brief rundown - Doctor runs into past incarnation of Doctor, they bicker as usual, both actors look like they're having fun, they move on. While they got the characterization for Peter Davison's Doctor wrong...its a really great short and its what got me into Classic Who (even though I started with a Tom Baker story, go figure).

Anyway, the story begins with a Space Ship thats modeled after The Titanic flying around outside Earth's orbit...so no one watching the sky NOTICES this? It'd be pretty hard to miss and The Doctor goes aboard this ship and befriends Kylie Minogue as an alien Stewardess (to be fair, I won't pick on her acting, partially because I'm not sure how much acting experience she's had and partially because...thats only a small problem) and he meets a couple of other aliens dressed in Cowboy suits because...it was a trick from the snobby aliens who said it was fancy dress...even though THEY'RE wearing Early 1910's dress. Don't think too hard about that. There's also an Earth expert who gets everything wrong played by Richard from Keeping Up Appearances(and thats the height of comedy in this episode...oh what, you thought a story about aliens replicating a space ship out of the Titanic would be completely comedic?), the only alien looking alien called Bavacavalatta (I have no idea if I spelled that right) and a stereotypical "asshole" join The Doctor.

Anyway, the General from Tomorrow Never Dies and The World Is Not Enough pilots the Titanic into the path of oncoming meteors mainly because he's mentally flipped. So the goal is that The Doctor has to crawl his way, with the other passengers to the command bridge so they can stop the Titanic falling to Earth (because the WHOLE WORLD needs to be in danger to get emotional investment) while also fighting off "Information Robots" that are in the design of Angels (which, to this special's credit, look really good). Anyway, after a few of them die, The Doctor gives this speech thats supposed to be epic (considering the plot, is THIS where you'd REALLY put an "epic speech"?) and The Doctor asks for the help of one of the other...pilots(?) played by the Werewolf from Being Human and one of the people Russel T. Davies considered for the role of The Doctor after Tennant left (even though I LIKE Russel T Davies...NO! Thats miscasting if ever I've heard it!).

Anyway, The Doctor meets up with the robots and he manipulates them into taking him to their leader (and he acts like he's never said that before even though he said that as Christopher Eccleston, the FIRST DOCTOR FROM NEW WHO AND FROM A SCRIPT THIS SAME WRITER WROTE!) and it turns out that the owner of the company who made this trip possible planned for this to happen (yes I remember what the first sentence was of the previous paragraph!) so there could be a major disaster, killing over 6 billion people because he lost controlling interest in the company and this would bring him back because of the sheer loss of lives...even though he's ON the cruise. One wonders why if that was to be a major disaster he planned to happen (even though that would rely on knowing the Captain would flip) why he'd even be in the same star system? If it failed, he could still make a decent case for his company takeover so...I really have nothing on why he's even there.

Anyway, Kylie Minogue manages to kill him by driving a forklift into him (he's in a 'head chair', a wheelchair if the person using it was just a head) and even though she could've easily, Kylie doesn't bother to get out of the forklift as she's driving it over the edge (at a whopping speed of 5 miles an hour!) and she dies...anyone that stupid was asking for it. The Doctor goes up to the bridge, saves the Titanic JUST AS it was passing over Buckingham Palace (for some unbearably unfunny moments where the Queen and royal guards are in a panic about The Titanic falling) and he manages to pull up just in time and just as The Queen thanks him, even though, old or new, Elizabeth II has never met any incarnation of The Doctor.

This is a really crap story, all around but the cherry on top of the cake is that this episode is dedicated to the memory of Verity Lambert, the first producer of Doctor Who and one of the first Female Producers at the BBC. She was a legend and gave birth to the show as fans know and love it today. And as a personal fan of the William Hartnell era of the show, what she deserved was a story on par with Genesis Of The Daleks, not THIS! This entire episode is BAD! Even by the standards of bad Doctor Who. It would've been laughed out of the writing room in the Colin Baker era and that Doctor had to fight bombs that turn people into trees! Its like one of the writers had a bet that they could get their kid's worst fan fiction of Doctor Who broadcast on Television. Whoever that kid was, I hope he improves as a writer and his father won big.
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Of all Stobe Harju's Poets Of The Fall music videos, this one is my favourite
10 October 2015
One of the joys of watching music videos directed by Stobe Harju is that they are ALWAYS visually interesting. Even his Nightwish movie Imaginaerum falls into that category. This one, though, kind of follows through a lot better on the "translation" element from audio to video a lot better than his others.

So the song is generally about looking within yourself for the absolution to take a stand against things you find wrong in the world. Thats just how I interpret the song. Its open for debate but thats just me.

So with a premise like that, whats the music video like? Well its where the band are in a boxing ring doing a "performance duel"...against themselves and they're being watched by themselves with giant spiral masks on their faces all while one of them stabs needles into an orange that drips black sludge which later explodes into a spray of black sludge.

Its hard for me to explain in words but...with what they do with it, it works. Reading it, I could understand why some people would call it silly but...it works.
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Doctor Who (1996 TV Movie)
5/10
Overall, I'm kind of torn.
21 September 2015
How do I explain this? I really love Doctor Who. I practically dived into the Classic show, then the New show and I have a formed opinion of literally every single Doctor (my favourite is Patrick Troughton) and the idea to "Americanise Doctor Who" for a TV remake...isn't that bad. I know its a strictly British show but what you have is an alien who goes to anywhere at anytime he wants and helps people, that isn't exactly the most uniquely British idea I've ever heard so the idea to Americanise it could've worked if they had the right strings pulling behind it and the answer is...they didn't.

I'll start with my compliments...PAUL McGANN! Oh my God what a wasted opportunity with this Doctor! His performance could've been one of the best ever! If he was given enough time to develop, he could've been David Tennant and Peter Davison's Doctors done better...and David Tennant is my #3 favourite Doctor only being knocked down there by Tom Baker as my #2. Yes, I'm saying this, if McGann had enough of a chance, he could've rivalled Tom Baker's performance! That is how much faith I have in his Doctor! The production design for this show is simply gorgeous. The Stone TARDIS looks amazing and the idea of The Doctor loosing his memory after a Regeneration is an intriguing one. With all that said, there is one thing that this story does so good, it rivals both the classic and new show...the Soundtrack! Oh my god, I want this soundtrack so bad. Even if the script was terrible, the soundtrack makes the epic battle at the end FEEL epic. It makes the "whimsical scenes" feel amazing. In short, regardless of what I say or what anyone else says, GET THE SOUNDTRACK!

So with all that in mind, you may ask "why did it suck so bad?" Okay, what you had for a starting on point is 26 seasons worth of TV, so if you were to adapt another continuation, you would be left with 3 options - 1. Explain everything then and there and make the show a "Doctor Who for Idiots" 2. Change up some of the lore of the show enough so it doesn't leave audiences alienated or 3. just throw up your arms and say "we can do whatever we want with this!" This movie took option 4 "all of the above". I cannot tell you even as a die hard fan how lost I was with this! For one, The Master has a trial on Skaro at the beginning of the film at the hands of the Daleks. Lets count in how many ways thats insane, 1. The Daleks are basically Alien Nazis, killing everything that isn't like them, so why the hell would they be hosting a trial? If you aren't a Dalek, your "EXTERMINATED", its that simple! 2. Shouldn't the trial of a Time Lord be conducted by the, you know, THE TIME LORDS! 3. How did The Master survive the last time we saw him? He was on an Exploding Planet with no means of escape! 4. How did The Doctor know about the trial? "Oh, your basically our enemy thats foiled us at every turn but we'll let you take The Master's ashes." I know McCoy's Doctor was a master manipulator but Jesus! 5. Speaking of McCoy's Doctor, the last time we saw Skaro, The Doctor blew it up! Its gone! That was a single plot point! Thats before the opening credits start. Oh and if your using this as a jumping on point, the opening doesn't explain where Skaro is in relation to the show, who The Master is and what his history is with The Doctor other than "he's my enemy"...There are literally hundreds of moments like this.

Now I want to talk about Eric Roberts as the villain. Okay, the Roger Delgado and Anthony Ainley Master's weren't exactly subtle but...Eric Roberts as The Master has the wonderful disguise to humans of "act like the Terminator". This makes every scene he's in...hilarious. It wouldn't be that bad a plot point but...I think Roberts is trying to be the master manipulator to people and yet people are willing to trust Eric Roberts that looks and acts like The Terminator. There's suspension of disbelief and then there's a being idiotic. After the cat is finally out of the bag (or Water/Air Snake...thats the form The Master takes!) all subtlety goes out the window (or what this show THOUGHT was subtlety) and Eric Roberts starts being the campest incarnation of the character.

There are also plot points that are only just brought up in this film like The Doctor being half human (despite the fact that Gallifreyans, from what we've seen in the Classic and New show are basically human looking so why did that plot point exist?), The Eye Of Harmony being an "access Regeneration" point for other Doctors (I guess that was a way of writing in a "safety net if McGann stuffed up and being like "say hello to Doctor #9 - Tom Baker!").

So overall is this special AS BAD as people make out? No. Its not even close. If you start comparing to Colin Baker's and even Peter Davison's run as The Doctor, they had worse stories and this came after both. However, does that mean this is good? No. All things considered, it was a "good show" trying to get out and if they gave it at least a Season, it could've really worked, but with what we got, its just a mediocre Doctor story with a fantastic Doctor, amazing production design, a few interesting ideas and an amazing soundtrack...coupled with asking questions every few minutes and a villain so over the top that Tim Curry would've been a step DOWN. If your interested, check it out, it does a few things right, but...just be prepared. Thats all I'll say.
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Lost Girl: Of All the Gin Joints (2013)
Season 4, Episode 6
10/10
If you only ever decide to watch one episode of Season 4...make it this one.
9 April 2015
Warning: Spoilers
Season 4 of Lost Girl is a bit of a mix for me. I liked the first half. Hell, it actually was building a mystery quite well and it has a twist in that mystery that makes the whole thing seem completely ridiculous considering what we saw of it before. This episode proves that this show CAN have great writing, it CAN develop its characters.

So the plot relies a lot on a plot development that only happened a few episodes ago so, a little backstory, Bo finds out from the Unamends that she has, in fact, joined a side. The Dark. Now, keep in mind, this episode was before The Wanderer was revealed so what you have is a character who prided herself on being her own person and not owned by anyone, being owned by a group she doesn't even like and you can't revoke a side unless you have the witness of your joining present (who, at this point, Bo had no idea who that was). Oh and, before any fans skip ahead to this episode's review, read this, and scream "BETRAYAL!!!!" (Spoony Experiment reference) they get rid of this by the end of the season.

So what is actually the plot of this episode, A Fae descended from birds who is an opera singer (I'm not questioning it) approaches Bo saying that she promised to meet her and set her free, although Bo has no memory of it (which is an established plot point throughout the entire season), and the reason why this bird descended Opera singer wants to be free is that she feels exploited by her singing ability which can actually evoke memories, emotions and when pushed to the limit, can kill people. All she actually wants is to perform in front of a crowd but two of her "owners", Marcus and Damber, fight for ownership. Damber has owned her for 200 years but Ianka is really in love with Marcus who just wants to use her to kill the family Damber belongs to with the death song for revenge for not getting his prize pet bird back so quickly.

Now an explanation as to why its good, the character arc with Ianka (the singer) mirrors the struggle Bo goes through in being assigned to a side that its as perfectly done as you can get. It also never really feels like obvious symbolism or anything like that. I actually genuinely cared for Ianka, this was due to two things, one, the actress playing her was fantastic (and thats amazing considering I hated Hannibal (2013)). She knew how to match the emotion with something as silly as what Lost Girl can be at times, to the character. The second part is the writing. Where the hell was this writing in the second half of the season?! Seriously, a single 45 minute episode made me care more for Ianka than a 4 episode long "epic" where Bo has to save Rainer.

Now this episode ends with Marcus forcing Ianka to sing the death song at gunpoint, but she doesn't sing it to the Barackians (the kind of Fae Damber is, also I'm not sure if I spelled that right), only to the man she loved. However, the power of using this death song has drained her completely, to the point that she dies almost immediately but she reassures Bo, on her deathbed, she's done her job of "freeing her" and that she even admired Bo as a hero which is why she wanted to be free so bad. I actually felt sorry for her by this point. This is what Lost Girl does best - simple stories, great characters. Thats all.

So overall, this is by far the best episode of the season. I mean, the first half is the only part where it has competition but this episode not only proves you can introduce and develop a character in 45 minutes, but it can be done well. For a show that is normally very silly, it is a refreshing moment to see a great character driven episode. I wish I could say more about it but, I can't, this episode is simply fantastic.
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Lost Girl: Origin (2014)
Season 4, Episode 12
1/10
Probably the worst episode I've seen in the entire series.
31 March 2015
Warning: Spoilers
Now, when it comes to Lost Girl, I love this show. I love the characters, the mythos, the stories, everything about this show drips with a richness that I love about it. I sat through the entirety of the first four seasons and...no joke, this is where I start to really hate Bo. Why? That gets a little complicated, spoilers if you haven't seen the season yet. Because this isn't as much an attack on just the one episode, more the entire second half of the season.

So at this point The Wanderer has revealed himself (as Rainer) and is Bo's new boy toy, this alone I could scream about for a good 15 minutes. She tries to get her friends on his side and they are all questionable about it. And honestly, why shouldn't they be? When they bring up he kidnapped her she answers "It wasn't like that" and they answer with the question "What was it like then?" "Its a long story." I'm all ears because I only saw this guy for the first time three episodes ago and that was the end so only 80 minutes have been devoted to this guy and this makes her willing to turn her back on her friends because "he's a nice guy"...By this point, I was screaming at the TV "YOU STUPID B*TCH!!!!"

So in the last episode (this is where major spoilers happen, so if you haven't got up to this part in the show yet...I'd say turn back NOW!) Hale gets killed by the Druid Kenzi owed money to for her short lived powers and to pay for them she accidentally gave a twig to that makes him immortal so he was able to come back from his firey torment the last time we saw him and now he's acting like Norman Bates as if played by Jeremy Irons from Dungeons And Dragons (but even if you look at it as a laugh, it isn't enough to salvage THIS). He took Hale's life so they're even and Kenzi wants to go revenge on his ass and yet Bo can't. Why? Rainer might die in a few days. Okay, Why is that priority number one?! Shouldn't the death of your best friend's fiancé be a little more important than your new f#ck bot? At least Dyson has an excuse that he wants to get information out of the guy (which he never actually gets) but still, Dyson reacts to the death of his best friend, you know, like its a big thing. Bo, however, is more concerned with Rainer because "why not?" If that wasn't enough to get me to completely alienate myself from Bo as a character completely(thats pretty impressive too, to do that after I've enjoyed her as a character for 4 years), to stop Rainer dying would mean unleashing hell itself on the world. Its not like this just happens at the end of the episode either, Lauren warns Bo of this (and Trick at the end of the last episode). Does our little Succubus care about this? Of course not! She just wants her boy toy to survive past his expiry date! I mean I guess it makes sense, its not like Rainer dies an episode later anyway...OH WAIT!

This is the point where this show just got too stupid for me and thats quite an accomplishment considering in the 4th season alone we saw Kenzi becoming a parent, Krampus turned into a candy craving man child and a hip hop dance off to the death. You know why that stuff isn't as stupid as this? Because there was always a sense that it belonged in the show. They've done stupid stuff like this before and it was always done funny without that much compromise. This is a betrayal of the main character to the point that even if I could relate to her, considering the dumb sh*t she does and how much she betrays her friends she's had since the show's inception, I wouldn't want to. Thats how bad the writing is. I'm going to now say something I have never said in a review before, if you like this, I implore you, send me a private message explaining why! I genuinely want to know!

Spoilers, again, what happens in the end is that Bo actually marries Rainer (just writing that made me cringe in anger!) and that unleashes hell. But here's the killer part, The Wanderer isn't the main bad guy, it was his lieutenant, who was only introduced in this episode, by the way, who manipulated them both into doing this. If Rainer actually put Bo under a mind control spell, I'd buy that because she kind of acts like he did and it would justify why she'd go help some guy she just met over her best friend (and why she'd slaughter the Unamends at the command of Rainer with no REAL justification for doing so). But what the next episode says is that rooting for Rainer was the RIGHT move and everyone else was wrong. Yep, the WANDERER who kidnapped her in season 3 and was banished to roam eternity by the Blood King himself, and was said to be pure evil by everyone before this is actually a good guy! Did anyone even READ the scripts to the previous season before making this sh*t?!

I really love this show. The first season is one of my personal favourite seasons of Television and Seasons 2 and 3, while at times dragged, they all still had that enjoyability factor that made them work and all still acted and felt like a legitimate season of Lost Girl. The first half of Season 4 was actually going along this path, but when they actually revealed Wanderer...this is actually making me question whether Season 5 is really worth watching.
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Hamlet, Prince of Denmark (1980 TV Movie)
9/10
An interesting little TV movie based on one of the best plays of all time.
11 March 2015
To start off with, going in, I had no idea about Hamlet. I knew the basic premise but I never actually studied the text nor even heard any of the monologues (besides "To Be Or Not To Be" but who hasn't heard that?) and I actually became interested in it due to the fact that I wanted to say that I have at least a favourite play by Shakespeare. So I picked this one up, knowing it was celebrated for being one of the few adaptations to keep everything in (besides Branagh's version) and the casting of Derek Jacobi and Patrick Stewart seemed promising enough. I went in and...I liked it.

The plot (for those who don't know) is that the King of Denmark has recently died and the King's brother, Claudius, has married the Queen. Hamlet, the prince, doesn't like the fact that her mother married so soon after his father's death. While on patrol a guard sees the ghost of the King and notifies Hamlet through one of his best friends, Horatio. The ghost explains to Hamlet that his brother murdered him, he must take revenge and Hamlet schemes under the guise of acting crazy to everyone around him, including his girlfriend, Ophelia.

One of the things I didn't expect is that Derek Jacobi overacts as Hamlet. He's still a good performer and he knows how to play the character but...I'm going to state my life on the assumption that Hamlet didn't bark at all in the play. Patrick Stewart and Claire Bloom hit all the right notes as the King and Queen of Denmark. One of the actors that surprised me the most is Lalla Ward as Ophelia. I only know of her outside of this as Romana from Doctor Who and she manages to take the character of Ophelia, a character that could've been boring and uninteresting into my personal favourite character in the entire play.

When it comes to the production design, everything is all on one stage and the different scenes are just cardboard cut outs. This isn't actually that bad because the art design is really good and it gives it the "play" feel to it. Maybe if you want better sets, you should check out some other version but then again it was originally written as a play so this shouldn't be a big problem for those that are interested in the story.

Overall its Shakespeare done by the BBC with the goal of "do Shakespeare and do it right" and with that in mind, this is a really good telling of the play. The 3 and a half hour runtime may be a bit of a turnoff to anyone interested in basically getting the foot notes of each scene but then again, this IS a work from who many consider the greatest writer of all time. So if you're interested in it, I'd definitely suggest checking this out.
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The Raven (2006 Video)
1/10
My first Ulli Lommel film!
2 February 2015
Before I start this review, I feel as though I should talk about a director, Rainer Werner Fassbinder. For those that don't know, Fassbinder, for me, blurs the lines between an art-house film and flat out exploitation. This was a guy whose best film, in my opinion, is where a couple who have both committed adultery are pressured by their crippled daughter to shoot said daughter. The guy was apparently a horrible human being in real life but I at least see an audience for his work. So why am I bringing this up? He often would produce films for his "anti-theater" movement, often actors that worked in his films would direct something he'd produce. The best director to come out of that is Margarethe Von Trotta who did Rosenstrasse and Hannah Arendt. On the other end of the scale, the worst is Ulli Lommel who just feels like he's trying to recapture that "arthouse/exploitation glory" with this - The Raven.

If your familiar with Edgar Allan Poe's work, even remotely, you should know the story about how a guy is tormented with the loss of a woman called Lenore, a Raven flies in and torments him with the word "Nevermore" (this "analysis" doesn't do the poem justice at all, if you haven't already, I'd suggest checking it out). This film doesn't even follow that. In fact, it doesn't even follow a coherent narrative, to the point where Ed Wood would probably scratch his head in confusion to answer the question of "what the hell is going on?" The plot, actually is about a woman called Lenore who has psychic dreams about Edgar Allan Poe and The Red Death from his story "The Masque Of The Red Death". Whats the point of including this in the narrative, for The Red Death, there is none, for Edgar Allan Poe himself, thats a bit more complicated.

So Lenore is told by her Grandfather (played by Lommel himself) that she is the Lenore that Edgar Allan Poe talked about in The Raven. Her character goal is to become Lenore in Poe's work but even if that wasn't vague enough of a quest, we have a reason as to why that is the single dumbest idea any character can conceive. Earlier in her life she actually fought off a man who wanted to rape her and she electrified him. He comes back with Tomato Sauce on his face killing all Lenore's friends but he can't harm her, nor even die, until she fulfills her destiny. So if she does become Poe's Lenore, it means this angry rage ghost can harm her and she's the source of his rage! Now for other questions like "why does Poe's work allow such a shroud of non violence against someone who shares a name with one of his characters?" or "where did the ghost come from?" or "why is it killing her friends and other seemingly random people we never even get a name for?" Explanation? Who needs it? Oh and the film is edited so badly that to figure out what I did about the plot, I had to read the blurb on the back of the box. If you saw this film without the DVD box...good luck trying to follow the film.

I actually haven't even got to the editing in this film and that is by FARRRRRR the worst aspect of the film and considering the actors all sound like they're half asleep, all the cinematography looks like it was done by a 5 year old and the sound is eerily quiet and you suspect that it wasn't directed that way, thats saying a lot. Why? Well we actually get, nearly every minute, quick shots of telegraph poles. We also have the Red Death dreams that take up a good 10 minutes. We also see a man in a black bird suit driving from time to time which takes up less than 5 seconds every time and that happens every scene, and to add insult to injury, the killer often talks in this film, over a shot of telegraph poles and the words he's saying actually being put on screen for the audience. Can you guess how much this has to do with the plot? If you guessed "nothing" YOU ARE CORRECT!

I'm not sure if this actually is starting to sound like The Room or Birdemic where "oh its just parody fun, this sounds hysterical" its not. Its absolute torture to sit through. I've never felt 80 minutes as long, drawn out and as boring as this. What about characters back story? Well lets try Lenore, she's a singer for a band (we see a total of 3 minutes devoted to it and thats to sing some shitty song, guess how much it contributes to the plot), she was raised in a nunnery (we get this information around 10 minutes from the end) and loved being read Edgar Allan Poe stories by her grandfather. The entirety of her character summed up in ONE SENTENCE! She is also the deepest and introspective character in the entire plot. Ask me to name another character, I swear, I WILL stare at you blankly.

Overall, I don't see how anyone...anywhere can really enjoy this film. Its torture to sit through, you need a DVD case with you at all times to figure out the bare bones of what the hell is going on and it has nothing to do with the poem at all! In short, when your adaptation of an Edgar Allan Poe story makes Masque Of The Red Death starring Frank Stallone look like a masterpiece, STOP DIRECTING IMMEDIATELY!
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10/10
A mesmerizing music video
27 January 2015
Before I start, I want to explain something, I freaking love Poets Of The Fall and their music. I actually stumbled across them when I was around 12 when I was just finding out there was actual good music of today and with the exception of a forgettable 5th album, I have enjoyed everything they've done.

Now the song itself is a love ballad that, quite frankly, any idiot would've just made the music video just with a couple that break up at a Carnival. But this director, Stobe Harju, decides to make it about a girl wearing a gas mask and a Gothic Lolita dress and her relationship with a carnival attraction that is played by the lead singer, Marko Saaresto, she gives a giant lollipop to the two other band members, Olli Tukainen (I hope I spelled that right) and "Captain" and goes to another attraction where she has to break plates for freedom and she breaks them leaving the carnival attraction behind.

So I may be very bias towards the music and, the "story" of this video is clearly from someone who was either really creative or really insane. So how is the style? Everything is CGI and considering this is an independent band from Finland, you'd expect its not up to scratch. It is. Imagine if the cinematographer from Repo The Genetic Opera got together with Tim Burton and asked if they could do something together...its just as trippy and "dreamlike" as it sounds. I can't explain why, but it fits really well with the video, you'll see what I mean.

Now there are also two versions of this music video - the original made in 2006 and the "Remaster" made in 2009. I'd say the original does look a lot more like the Carnival settings are actually rusting but I'd say the Remaster cleared up a lot of the technical bugs in the original (there is a clear moment where you can tell there was supposed to be a fade from one clip to the next in the original, but there isn't). So if any, watch that.

So, overall, if you have never heard of this band, I'd suggest checking it out. If a ballad isn't really your thing, I would probably steer clear but trust me, for those that want something interesting and different, I'd probably hold this up with the highest of all recommendations.
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Super Shark (2011)
1/10
Even for an Asylum shark movie, this is the bottom of the barrell
4 November 2014
With the advent of the Sharknado phenomenon, a movie that got popular for being a tongue in cheek turd (it was meant to be bad), I thought that I would try out a film with a similar premise of unbelievable lengths; Supershark. What drew me into this film? The fact that it has a shark thats the size of a submarine that can not only withstand missiles but also walk on land and can fly! The appeal I was trying to get out of it was something like Attack Of The Killer Tomatoes or the previously mentioned Sharknado. Where, its dumb, its nonsensical but thats the whole point. What we got instead was a magnum opus to sh*t.

So my one biggest problem with the movie is that we barely see the shark. I think its in the film for a grand total of 30 minutes at best, less than half the run time (sadly) where what we get is two other plot points - a journalist trying to uncover the EVIL oil tycoon for using a chemical that could break down solid rock (apparently that was where the Supershark was hiding, surprisingly I'm not questioning it for this kind of movie). The second plot involves a love triangle between a group of life guards - one guy and two girls that happen to be friends. I will give credit to the second one, the Supershark does finish that one off but what we get is mainly the oil tycoon plot.

Okay If I'm begging this kind of movie to be over the top, dumb, its time for the director to rethink his life. I mean, you don't need to go to film school to make one of these movies - yes, I expect horrible acting, I expect some of the worst CGI I've ever seen, I expect moments of impossibility happening but I also expect dumb fun. With this film, I can give it at least 3/4 but the last one is the most important element and without it, everything else just feels like "why am I watching this".

Oh and if you're expecting smut to save the film, your sadly wrong. This is a PG movie. The only thing that comes close is a contest where whichever woman looks good in a bikini wins. Its not a plot point in this film, more of a scene. I'm not usually into smut in entertainment but in a B grade shark movie where if it had fan service in it, just one scene, it would've saved the movie, that is pathetic!

So overall, this is a movie where a shark can fly, walk on land and withstand a tank and even for someone who kind of likes these movies, its pretty underwhelming. If you want to see an over the top shark movie that relies on "it was constructed to be bad" watch Sharknado 2!
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The Nostalgia Chick (2008–2014)
8/10
Honestly, I think this is a good example of internet reviewing.
11 September 2014
The Nostalgia Critic is by far one of the most famous of internet critics, however in 2008, Doug Walker decided to have a spin off show that would look at Nostalgic movies that were targeted at a female audience. From that, we got Lindsay Ellis as the Nostalgia Chick. A very different breed of animal from her male counterpart.

For one thing, I don't actually think her reviews are that funny. Sometimes they are but for the most part she delivers her reviews in a serious light. So as a spin off to a satire review show, you'd probably think its awful but for the jokes that are there, they're delivered in a dry, witty way that its actually a welcome change of pace from the "scream" reviews that Doug Walker throws out, its almost like The Cinema Snob at some points.

I also admit that out of anyone on Channel Awesome, if I want a review that would not only be the most informative but also the one that could "sell" the movie, I watch Lindsay's review. Even though I don't agree with everything she says about movies (example, I actually liked Labyrinth and The Fifth Element, I don't like Wall-E) but I at least know that with each movie she reviews she has a well thought out argument that justifies why she feels the movie is crap or if she likes it.

So overall, this isn't the same style of comedy that you'd normally find on Channel Awesome but in all fairness, Lindsay does explain her thoughts on movies rather well, to a point where it never feels like she's just blindly hating. If you're into web critics, go check this show out.
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4/10
Tired.
1 September 2014
Warning: Spoilers
Now before I start, I want to make it absolutely clear of 2 things; 1. I liked the original Thor movie, it wasn't great but I'd call it entertaining enough that, if anyone wanted me to sit through it again, I wouldn't object. 2. I know that this might sound like "Oh, Morbius is just going on with the same old thing, he didn't like The Avengers so he obviously will just blindly hate on every Marvel film" no, I can assure you, in this review I have measured up each pro and con as fairly as I can.

The plot is basically the same thing you've seen in a ton of these films; bad guy tries to take over the world, hero tries to stop them and get a love interest into the mix. There isn't that much else besides that. Its been done to death in these films and for the most part, done better.

However, I do have to defend other aspects of this film before I get to the complaints. Firstly, the CGI is amazingly well done. The acting is from just about every player, pretty solid, the action scenes are all really well done and I'll at least say, its watchable.

Now onto the complaints, now you would've probably seen the first film. Assemble in your mind each and every single complaint; the love relationship is underdeveloped, the humor is bad, the writing is bare bones simplicity and it under uses the movie's best talent. This film has all of those things but to a worse off degree than the first. As if, instead of saying "How do we improve this over the original?" they said "How do we make more flaws in writing than the original?"

First off, the movie's talent is just, as I've said twice, under used so much that its pretty much ridiculous. Stellan Skarsgard is the worst one because as much as Anthony Hopkins and Christopher Eccleston are under played, at least they don't have this god awful humor. What passes off as a joke in this film? Skarsgard running around Stonehenge naked, Skarsgard not wearing pants, and the oh so funny antics of Kat Dennings, even though the Jar Jar Binks comparisons are a little harsh, she's still pretty bad.

The love relationship is just terrible in this movie. Natalie Portman and Chris Hemsworth have little to no chemistry and most of that, I blame on the writing. Now, okay, when it comes to other blockbusters where Portman played the love interest, it had worse writing (STAR WARS EPISODE 2) but in this, they share little to no scenes together, they barely talk to each other alone (and wouldn't she question "hey, what was up with that alien army I saw you fighting on TV?") and they don't even say goodbye to each other when the film ends. However, to their credit, both actors are trying, good god are they trying, but nothing works and after reading that, how can it? Apparently the Bifrost Bridge is repaired...out of nowhere, so what is keeping them apart? In the first one, it was made clear, in this one, its like Thor has ADD and can't decide whether he wants to be with her or not. But, oh, that would ruin Marvel's formula. Um...f#ck formula! The Marvel formula has been in use since 2008 and its getting tired! Captain America 2 had the "f#ck formula!" attitude and its by far the best Phase 2 movie.

So, overall, I don't hate this film, there are certainly good things about it but enough for me to like it? No. While its not the worst I've ever seen, it is an annoying film with the "playing it safe" bland formula Marvel has decided on what works. Hello. Can just one Hollywood movie take a risk? That's what makes people remember it.
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1/10
One of the most wretched movies of the year and considering my views on current movies THAT IS A NEW LOW!
20 August 2014
Okay, I am a fan of vampire books (not the ones this film was based on but to its credit, it can't be worse than this) and movies. I went in with the mentality "it can't be worse than Twilight", no offense to fans of the books but...it very nearly is.

I will start with my vote for the worst thing about the film. It fails to explain one thing about the new mythology of Vampires nor what this "Vampire Academy" is even really meant to be about. Okay, they try within the first 5 minutes of the film but let me just tell you what else they throw in and expect you to try and remember this;

-2 fight scenes

-A kidnapping storyline

-A "dual feeding" storyline and why thats a bad thing

-A telekinetic connection between the two leads explained over a plot point

You are expected to remember all of this and follow the story when all that sh!t happens IN UNDER 5 MINUTES! If you want audiences to take your mythology seriously, SPEND TIME DEVELOPING IT! Even Twilight did this better. Okay, Twilight f!cked over the vampire mythos and everything about it but at least they spent time on it so the audience isn't thinking "what the f#ck is going on?!" I never thought I'd live to see the day when Vampire Academy becomes complicated.

Okay, so the story is that a vampire princess and her wannabe guardian (for her character, think Kenzi from Lost Girl minus the humor and anything else that would make her enjoyable) are fighting off a threat to the Princesses life. And a majority of the film is "they think its this one guy or girl but it isn't". Also throw in 2 love relationships, an "outcast nerd" subplot, a vampire dying of...vampire degenerative disease and a plot point about the Princess trying to climb up the popularity ladder again. Is it just the theme for modern Hollywood to just throw in a ton of plot and just hope it all holds weight? First The Amazing Spiderman 2, now this. And for those that think because I think its complicated I don't get it, watch The Man Who Fell To Earth, Don't Look Now, 2001 A Space Odyssey, Fata Morgana and Wings Of Desire. All of these films I consider confusing at least at one point or another but I like them.

Now okay, if the plot isn't worth it at least the characters can be right? Wrong! These leads are SO ANNOYING! Mostly what they do is try to get back at the worst written bully I've ever seen in a movie (no joke) and figure out "do I like this boy?" and, as I said earlier, trying to regain popularity. Um...hello? Threats have been made on your life! Why don't you use your title as Princess to, I don't know, BUILD A SECURITY SYSTEM FOR YOUR SCHOOL OF VAMPIRES SO YOU CAN FIND OUT WHOSE WRITING BLOOD MESSAGES ON YOUR BEDROOM WALL! Oh, I'm sorry for using my head. You go focus all your energy on regaining popularity while this psycho stalker kills your cat (no joke, thats in the movie) and hangs a bloody corpse above your front door...THINK!

Oh and the characters try to throw in a moral at the end, because after reading THAT paragraph above you'd just LOVE that for your teenage girl. Its that popularity and bullying are meaningless...when I said this had worse writing than The Worst Witch did you really think I was kidding?

When it comes to vampire films, I'm a fan, really. However the writing of this film makes The Worst Witch look like Lord Of The Rings. I mean a German vampire film I saw called We Are The Night was brilliant. It took its time for the mythology to set, the stupidity level of the main characters is only as far as "not doing a good job of cleaning up blood" and the characters were interesting. And I know most people are like "oh I can't watch subtitled films" well you can read can't you? So whats wrong with looking at a screen that has both action and text over it? And if you REALLY can't do that, go watch the English dub.

Overall, this film is one of the worst films I've seen in a while. Its not because its a "chick flick" or something like that. But its because its a stupid movie with even dumber characters and even worse, it tries to throw in a moral. I've never read the books, all this film did was turn me off to an even greater extent.
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