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Highly Underrated
6 October 2005
*The Dave Thomas Comedy Show* was an eclectic mixture of odd premises and celebrity impressions. I particularly enjoyed the movie in which Michael Caine (Thomas) is a passenger on an airplane that crashes, leaving him the only survivor, and still trapped in his seat. With the seat on his back, he travels the world battling evildoers and helping people. The high point was when he pushed the stewardess-summoning button and caused a stewardess to appear out of nowhere and bring him food. It was this sketch that pointed out to me that Caine will appear in just about anything. I also remember an Indiana Jones-esquire sketch in which Thomas is "tortured" by beautiful Nazi female officers with an overdose of pleasure.
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The Borrower (1991)
Adequate B-Movie
3 October 2005
If you enjoy bad movies, especially late 1980s/early 1990s science fiction/horror, I recommend this movie. The premise and story are interesting, there are both intentionally funny parts and unintentionally funny parts, and the music is good (especially the theme). Probably the weakest aspect is the acting. Between the title character--an alien who is played by five different actors as he changes identities--and the two heroes, a pair of cops boringly played by Rae Dawn Chong and Dan Gordon, we never really have anyone to care about. One aspect of the movie that I found especially pleasantly surprising is its urban setting. Most low-budget SF or horror b-movies are set in the wilderness or a post-apocalypse to cut down on costs, while this was set in the big city, full of people and streets and buildings and modern technology. That--and the unexpected cross-dressing by Brad-Pitt-manqué Neil Giuntoli--are what make this movie a keeper!
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Surprisingly good!
20 July 2005
Warning: Spoilers
At the time this movie came out, Billy Blanks was a somewhat famous action star that had mostly appeared in supporting roles in martial arts movies like Bloodfist and Lionheart. (I seem to remember him in Bloodsport, but checking his IMDb filmography, I see that I'm wrong.) His Tae-Bo fitness course was a few years away, and it still seemed at this point like his acting career might yet take off. In 1995's Expect No Mercy Blanks was likable and carried the movie well as its star. It's a shame that he hasn't done anything as good since.

The movie itself is a pleasant surprise. Its clean, simple, 1980s-esque computer graphics are delightfully nostalgic in today's era of over-the-top in-your-face CGI. Its premise is solid, with Blanks infiltrating a cadre of virtual-reality-trained assassins to get to their leader. Its low budget, location shooting, and use of low-key special effects make it a relaxing, enjoyable experience that shows why 1995 was a simpler, more innocent time.
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Folks! (1992)
Boring and depressing
19 July 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Folks! is a "comedy" about a man whose parents beg him to kill them because they're going senile and want to be put out of their misery. Several times he tries to kill them and then changes his mind, saving them from his death-traps at the last minute and losing one of his body parts each time in the process. The movie seems to hate its main character, which makes it all the more painful to watch. There's also the usual tacked-on love-interest and predictable ending.

This movie was also the first time I'd seen Tom Selleck without a mustache, and I remember his shaved upper lip looking weird and making me feel slightly slick. But this might have been just because of the terrible premise and lame execution of the movie.
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