Thursday, August 04, 2011

Stryke of the Apes

Stryker (1983)
Directed by Cirio H. Santiago
Dipped into my San Jose VHS haul to finally view this gem. Really fun early 80s sci-fi action adventure. Naturally a Road Warrior rip-off but still plenty entertaining. And Steve Sandor is a decent lead as Stryker. “After the holocaust, nothing matters but survival.”

Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011)
Directed by Rupert Wyatt
Went to the midnight screening b/c I just couldn’t take hearing / reading anymore about this film. The positive buzz was nearly overwhelming so I didn’t want my expectations to get the best of me. Good thing because this is a great film. It pays off in many ways. Didn’t like the callbacks to the original PotA flick but whatever. The drama is really great. Much to appreciate here.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Another Death Spa

Another Earth (2011)
Directed by Mike Cahill
Went over to CineArts after work to catch this. Nice little indie sci-fi film co-written by Brit Marling. Mostly really enjoyed this but had a hard time getting past William Mapother because he will always be “Ethan” from LOST to me. It’s the ending that really seals the deal here.

Death Spa (1990)
Directed by Michael Fischa
Oh man was I looking forward to this selection for Horror Movie Night. Glad to have finally seen this b/c it’s so damn fun and ridiculous. Watching people trapped in the “death spa” is quite entertaining. Under-appreciated horror.

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Maniac Dreaming

Maniac (1980)
Directed by William Lustig
Took me long enough to finally see this. Geez. Thanks to Instawatch for making it available. Such a slimy and grimy flick that feels like a product of its time. I love that. Joe Spinell is creepy as all hell. Also dig on Caroline Munro, of course.

Dead of Night (1972)
Directed by Bob Clark
Caught this on Instawatch after hearing some buzz on the twitter. Deathdream, as its known, is a pretty cool flick with an inventive zombie vietnam vet story. Worth the watch. Another Bob Clark classic.

Monday, August 01, 2011

No Retreat for Bigfoot

No Retreat, No Surrender (1986)
Directed by Corey Yuen Kwai
Viewed this on my return flight from Puerto Rico. Holy hell is this an awesome flick! I had no idea but had always heard this was great. It is! It’s the kind of movie I’d love to watch w/others in a BTSNAT type of event. Or just a movie night. JCVD is wonderfully evil and montage is one of the best. So entertaining.

Night of the Demon (1980)
Directed by James C. Wasson
Also viewed on my return flight from Puerto Rico. Not a terrible hunt for Bigfoot film or as bad as its reputation, I guess.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Hottie in Outer Space

Mutiny in Outer Space (1965)
Directed by Hugo Grimaldi

Totally dig this sci-fi thriller. The green fungus is hilarious. Just a fun yet silly film that approaches the material seriously. Big fan of these flicks and Dolores Faith is a hottie in space. Viewed during my flight out west.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Christmas Shock

Shock (1946)
Directed by Alfred L. Werker

Kinda cool Vincent Price noir flick. Price always makes for a good villain. Worth the watch.

To All A Goodnight (1980)
Directed by David Hess

Horror Movie Night: Christmas in July edition! Decent but best thing about this is Jennifer Runyon. Will revisit at a future Christmas Horror Movie Night, I’m sure.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Fighting Personalities

Persona (1966)
Directed by Ingmar Bergman

Filling more Ingmar Bergman gaps and this might be my favorite to date. Crazy considering his style change but duality of the characters and the story are executed so well I just really love it. Def one to revisit someday. 8 / 10

The Fighter (2010)
Directed by David O. Russell

Solid 7 out of 10. Good drama. Bale steals the movie. Sick how good he is. Everyone else is very good but Bale is the clear standout. Decent film but other than Bale didn’t deserve all the accolades, IMO.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Agent Fear of the Dead

Fear and Trembling (2003)
Directed by Alain Corneau

Really, REALLY love this movie. Totally captures what it’s like for an ex-pat / foreigner to work in a Japanese company. Incredible film. Highly recommended. Too bad Kaori Tsuji didn’t go on to do more because she’s excellent.

Marc Mato, agente S. 077 (1965)
Directed by Gregg C. Tallas

Low budget spy thriller from Spain. The opening sequence when the crooks break in to steal the death ray is the best part of the film.

Phantasm III: Lord of the Dead (1994)
Directed by Don Coscarelli

Pretty darn good sequel esp. since I wasn’t expecting much. Wish they’d put all the films into a nice Blu-ray set. I really like Reggie Bannister.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Shadow of a Doubt (1943)

Shadow of a Doubt (1943)
Directed by Alfred Hitchcock

Excellent thriller. One I will definitely need to watch again. So well crafted but expected from the master. Joseph Cotten is terrific.

Flick (2008)

Flick (2008)
Directed by David Howard

Picked this up from the library b/c it was in the horror section and looked interesting. It’s not really. A tad on the dull side despite a good premise. Really it’s the execution that fails. Not terrible but a little boring. Too bad.

Grave of the Fireflies (1988)

Grave of the Fireflies (1988)
Directed by Isao Takahata

Put this off long enough. Not sure I could watch this again. Up there with Nobody Knows as one of the saddest, most tragic films I’ve seen. Anything with children in desperate situations is just too much for me. Hard one to watch indeed.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Day of the Apes

Planet of the Apes movie night was something I was looking forward to ever since I picked up the PotA blu-ray set a few weeks ago. This was a planned event to revisit all the PotA sequels and show them to Ron's boys for the first time. Also I've been itching to watch the PotA films again since the Drafthouse Apes event a few of my friends went to (still to this day haven't seen any of the Apes flicks on the big screen; super jealous of my friends that got all five in one sitting).

Since Ewan and Gavin had already seen the original PotA, we started promptly with Beneath the Planet of the Apes (1970), which I've often cited as my favorite in the series. Love everything about this movie and it's apocalyptic ending. 7.5 / 10

After that ending it's amazing they found the creative juices to make Escape from the Planet of the Apes (1971) and make it convincing. Such a corny film sweet with some touching moments. This movie made me so sad when when I was a child. 7 / 10

It's often hard to think which film has stuck with me the most over the years especially not having seen them for so many years. Images from the first films have imprinted on my mind but the story of Conquest of the Planet of the Apes (1972) has remained the strongest for me. I've always loved the rise of Cesar and how he orchestrates it. Great film. 8 / 10

No one will question that Battle for the Planet of the Apes (1973) is the weakest of the films but it has its moments. Paul Williams is also fun. At first I wasn't sure I had seen this film but the entire story of Cesar's son overhearing --- came back to me. 6.5 / 10

It was fun revisiting all four of the sequels with Ron's kids. As always they provided some fun commentary. Ewan agreed that Conquest is the best of these.

  • July New: 27
  • July Re-watch: 8
  • July '11 M.T.D.: 35
  • July '10 M.T.D.: 54
  • 2011 Y.T.D.: 421

Friday, July 22, 2011

Somewhere Under a Giving Tree

Left the office to drop into The Tree of Life (2011) over at CineArts in Evanston. Really, really love the love of --- film, which is no surprise. Just didn't care for the simplistic story. My thoughts may change on this over time but for now let's just say the so-called non-narrative didn't work for me. The lack of narrative isn't a problem since the central story is so basic. It's just not interesting. A very disappointing 5.5 / 10 Imagine following that with Sofia Coppola's Somewhere (2010) that received so much derision when it was released last year. I can see why but I didn't have a problem with content. It was (again) another issue of an overly simplistic story that just didn't do much but kinda sit there. No real punch or kick. Watchable although I probably won't watch it again. But it's worth checking out. 6 / 10
  • July New: 27
  • July Re-watch: 4
  • July '11 M.T.D.: 31
  • July '10 M.T.D.: 54
  • 2011 Y.T.D.: 417

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Dogs of War

Caught The Plague Dogs (1982) on NWI, happy to find it there having not seen it previously. This is another poignant, depressing animation about the escape of a couple of dogs from a testing facility. Fun, right? It's terribly sad but a really good film and great voice acting by John Hurt and others. 7 / 10 Out to the cinema for Captain America: The First Avenger (2011) on the big screen. Yeah, this is very enjoyable superhero flick despite a slowdown in 3rd act (of 4 acts total). May see it again to catch more the eggs. One I'll probably own someday. 7.5 / 10
  • July New: 25
  • July Re-watch: 4
  • July '11 M.T.D.: 29
  • July '10 M.T.D.: 54
  • 2011 Y.T.D.: 415

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

They Vant To Suck Your Blood

Incense for the Damned (1972) is uh… Bloodsuckers!
  • July New: 23
  • July Re-watch: 4
  • July '11 M.T.D.: 27
  • July '10 M.T.D.: 54
  • 2011 Y.T.D.: 413

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Yukio Mishima's Amazing Technicolor Dreamlife

I had Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters (1985) in my Instawatch queue but never managed to get to it. Then I heard GGTMC cover it and realized it was something I didn't want to wait any longer to see. Got the Criterion edition from the library and dived in. It's every thing the Gentlemen said and then some. Was really into the different vibe each chapter of Mishima's life brings all framed within his central and final story. Powerful and vastly entertaining. Paul Schrader really conveys the Japanese sensibility of Mishima's life. Ken Ogata just nails it. Already wanted to view it again after this viewing. So very good. Highly recommended. 8 / 10

Followed that with a revisit to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (2010) in preparation for the final film. Blu-ray looks gorgeous and the film is mostly good despite the somewhat abrupt ending. 7.5 / 10

  • July New: 22
  • July Re-watch: 4
  • July '11 M.T.D.: 26
  • July '10 M.T.D.: 54
  • 2011 Y.T.D.: 412

Monday, July 18, 2011

Das Wachsfigurenkabinett

Not sure why I decided to fire up Waxworks (1924) but maybe I was curious and up for more Conrad Veidt. I really like the framing of the wax museum the writer hired to develop the stories around the historical characters but the stories themselves drag a bit. Still entertaining. 6.5 / 10

  • July New: 21
  • July Re-watch: 3
  • July '11 MTD: 24
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 410

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Herzog x Kinski

Werner Herzog's Aguirre: The Wrath of God (1972) wasn't high on my blindspot list but still a film that needed to be seen. Saw it on the library shelf so what the hell. And it's a damn fine film just to see Klaus Kinski as the ruthless and unforgiving leader in search of El Dorado. The combination of Herzog and Kinski is legend. 7 / 10

  • July New: 20
  • July Re-watch: 3
  • July '11 MTD: 23
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 409

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Brando, Marlon Brando

Still recouping from my birthday and Cubs outing yesterday I finished off On the Waterfront (1954) before heading to the Quad Cities for my class reunion activities. Man, Brando was such a stud in his day. This film, a blindspot, is terrific, raw and natural. A shame it took me this long to finally sit down with it but highly recommended for any film buff. 8 / 10

  • July New: 19
  • July Re-watch: 3
  • July '11 MTD: 22
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 408

Friday, July 15, 2011

Birthday at Cubs Game!

Today is my birthday which also coincided with the company Cubs game outing. Fun way to celebrate with a bunch of people that I work with and enjoy being around. We had a rooftop this year that was much better than last year out on the scorching hot bleachers. It was much easier to mingle and enjoy the day. It was also Tara's birthday so as a special treat we were presented with a Elvis impersonator that performed magic tricks! Much to everyone's surprise, he was actually pretty damn good. This was a riot to watch and participate in the tricks.

After much drinking and eating and, oh yeah, there was a Cubs game too, we headed out to hit the Wrigleyville bars. There were several stops and more imbibing. At least it was nice to grab a photo with Yale and Shannon. The day was a blast! By the time I eventually got home I was so exhausted I couldn't even begin to queue up a movie to watch. Plus I have to drive back to the Quad Cities tomorrow for my class reunion. No movie today but it was worth it and a birthday I will never forget.

  • July New: 18
  • July Re-watch: 3
  • July '11 MTD: 21
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 407

Thursday, July 14, 2011

G-FEST XVIII at Pickwick Theater

The annual G-Fest Convention kicked off today with a couple of double features at the Pickwick Theater. Couldn't attend the daytime screenings due to work but wasn't going to miss the nighttime programming that featured a couple of movies I've already seen but relish viewing with a captive audience of Kaiju fans.

First up was Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla (1993), a movie I watched during a movie night at Ron's a few years ago. Wasn't crazy about it then but enjoyed it considerably more on this evening. Still has a silly final battle sequence and I just hate that made Godzilla evil in the 90s. 6.5 / 10

The second feature was another movie I may have first viewed at a movie night at Ron's Gamera: Guardian of the Universe (1995). This really could have been called Gamera Reborn because this is the first film in the trilogy of modern Gamera flicks, much darker films with the awesome flying turtle. Great to see on the big screen even if it was projected from DVD. 7.4 / 10

  • July New: 18
  • July Re-watch: 3
  • July '11 MTD: 21
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 407

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Trial by Fire

After office day I cruised down to Portage Theater for the Northwest Chicago Film Society screening of Dante's Inferno (1935) starring Spencer Tracy. What a fabulous movie to see on the big screen! It's all about a wicked carnival show that goes horribly wrong as Tracy's Jim Carter portrays a guy with only good intentions yet at what price to achieve his goals? Yeah, the subtext is telegraphed but it's a damn good ride. 7.2 / 10

Came home for the Horror Movie Night selection of Rituals (1977) a.k.a. The Creeper, another choice pick I hadn't seen. Not a great film that recalls a bit of Deliverance but still an interesting horror mystery of isolation and fear of the unknown. Hal Holbrook carries most of this and one I will have to revisit someday. 6 / 10

  • July New: 18
  • July Re-watch: 1
  • July '11 MTD: 19
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 405

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Lost in a Blink

The Lost World (1925), the earliest feature film adaptation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, was expiring on NWI so it was time to give it a spin. And it works well despite some corny moments with the native manbeasts. It's cool to see what they were able to do with the fantasy adventure elements in 1925. 7 / 10

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (2007) has been on my to-watch pile since the moment it was nominated for 4 Oscars back in 2008. And it was also on my blindspot list. No surprise here as this is one amazing film. Mathieu Amalric is incredible. This is the movie and story that I will always refer to whenever someone uses the #FML hashtag. Because most of the time people have no conception of what a fucked up life really is and misuse/abuse that notion. In this movie it's 100% appropriate and yet inspiring. Love this movie. 7.5 / 10

  • July New: 16
  • July Re-watch: 1
  • July '11 MTD: 17
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 403

Monday, July 11, 2011

Vanquishing Crime

Final Target (2009) a.k.a. Vanquisher (on the Instawatch) is a kinda okay martial arts action flick with a couple of great female leads that initially oppose each after a setup that kills off the elite commando force leaving only one survivor that seeks revenge. Great fight sequence to close a mostly humdrum movie. 6 / 10

Yes, Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989) is on my blindspot list (as are/were many of Woody Allen's films) but as I view each I'm reminded why Allen is revered for his earlier work. This movie is no exception. Wonderful mix of dark comedy. 7 / 10

  • July New: 14
  • July Re-watch: 1
  • July '11 MTD: 15
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 401

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Dumb and Dumber

Waitress! (1981) is a not-so-good eighties comedy that I was hoping would provide a little more enjoyment being an early Troma flick (and one co-directed by Lloyd Kaufman). Sadly it's just forgettable. 5.5 / 10

And what could be more forgettable than Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011)? Not much. Save for a few beautiful shots of Chicago getting blown to all hell this film is terrible and possibly the worst movie I'll see this year. What's truly unfortunate is that there could have been a decent movie in this had a couple of the characters and subplots been excised. As I tweeted, "the upside is that I will never have to watch that again." 3 / 10

Something to remove that awful taste from my eyes Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953) is another selection from my blindspot project. This Howard Hawks musical comedy romp is wonderful with two sparkling leads in Jane Russell and Marilyn Monroe. One I'm sure to revisit. 7.6 / 10

  • July New: 12
  • July Re-watch: 1
  • July '11 MTD: 13
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 399

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Can You Hear Me Calling?

Oh Ki-hwan's Voices (2007) suffers from a premise that is often hard to swallow; those around you want you dead so bad things happen. The protagonist here seems to be at the center of envy from everyone including her friends and family. The evil spirit jumps from person to person trying to kill her. If you can buy the story this will work for you. 6.6 / 10

My Planet of the Apes blu-ray boxed arrived so I've been chomping at the bit to view the films again. We arranged a special movie night to do just that but not the first film (because Ron's already shown that one to his kids). Tonight I watched the original Planet of the Apes (1968) on blu-ray by myself just to prepare. The PQ is pretty nice altho not as good as I expected. Still it's a great film that really only drags at the very end. But it remains one of my favorites for everything leading up to that. 9 / 10

  • July New: 9
  • July Re-watch: 1
  • July '11 MTD: 10
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 396

Friday, July 08, 2011

Clowns Cry Too

100 Tears (2007) is quite a splatter-fest. A low-budget splatter-fest. Here we have a murderous clown and the reporters tracking down the story. It's not the worst thing but did I mention it's bloody? Gotta give it up for effort put into the gore but I winced at the story and acting. But some remarkable practical effects. 5.5 / 10

  • July New: 8
  • July Re-watch: 0
  • July '11 MTD: 8
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 394

Thursday, July 07, 2011

This is the End, My Only Friend

Been on a Gregg Araki kick as of late anticipating his latest Kaboom. The Living End (1992) is an earlier film of his that still possessing many of the elements you'd expect from Araki. Here a couple of HIV guys meet and go off together on a self-destructive road trip. The low budget is evident but still an interesting watch. 6 / 10

  • July New: 7
  • July Re-watch: 0
  • July '11 MTD: 7
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 393

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Not So Secret Weapon

Picked off another Basil Rathbone Sherlock Holmes flick from the Instawatch in Sherlock Holmes and the Secret Weapon (1943). Not one of my favorites as it's a bit bigger in scope as Holmes must prevent a secret device from falling into the hands of the enemy. Story is weak but still great performances. 7 / 10

  • July New: 6
  • July Re-watch: 0
  • July '11 MTD: 6
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 392

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Rabid Razorbacks

Back from Rapid City and now just recuperating from the drive home to Chicago that kicked my ass. Only time for one movie and that would be Antoine Blossier's Prey (2010) a.k.a. Proie. I could easily sum this up as "killer pig" movie. But it's a little more than that as it deals with a family in France that has its own issues that is merely framed by these wild boars that have become mutated killing machines. Interesting film. 6.7 / 10

  • July New: 5
  • July Re-watch: 0
  • July '11 MTD: 5
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 391

Monday, July 04, 2011

Naked Bloodsuckers

Jean Rollin's The Nude Vampire (1970) is much more a visual fest than an adept story. I say this because I'm not exactly sure how to describe what I saw. Altho this is like an early (and far less executed) version of Kubrick's Eyes Wide Shut. But it's more about odd characters and their interactions with a cult. Rollin certainly has a flare for the visuals. Probably not an easy watch for most but it's one I'd like to revisit under better circumstances. It is the 4th of July after all!
6 / 10

  • July New: 4
  • July Re-watch: 0
  • July '11 MTD: 4
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 390

Sunday, July 03, 2011


Scream Bloody Murder (1973) is actually a decent horror flick about a messed up kid with a hook for a hand that goes on a murdering spree after being released from a mental hospital. Like this probably more than it deserves but I found it entertaining. 6.6 / 10

  • July New: 3
  • July Re-watch: 0
  • July '11 MTD: 3
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 389

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Where's the Beef?

In Rapid City, SD doing the family thing. Not much time to watch movies (nor do I really want to) but fortunately due to my father's decent internet connection I can take in one film before crashing. Decided to watch Angus (1995) tonight. It's the classic ugly duckling teen comedy and not a bad watch. 6.7 / 10

  • July New: 2
  • July Re-watch: 0
  • July '11 MTD: 2
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 388

Friday, July 01, 2011

Wide-Eyed in the Dark

So today I drove to Rapid City, SD. It's a long drive. Really long drive. I left last night and made it as far as Baraboo, WI. After arriving there I had zero internet but at least I had my movies on my computer including Umberto Lenzi's Eyeball (1975). It's not the best representation of a giallo but it's still quite entertaining as the killer removes an eyeball from his victims. Worth seeking out. 6.4 / 10

  • July New: 1
  • July Re-watch: 0
  • July '11 MTD: 1
  • July '10 MTD: 54
  • 2011 YTD: 387

June Movie Tally

Here's the round-up for films watched in June...
Watched 70 films in June, matching my second highest monthly total. 66 were first time views; only 4 were re-watches. Benefited from visiting Austin for BTSNAT 2.5 where we watched 8 films during a 16 hour span. Caught 8 films on the big screen (most were pretty damn great). Also worked more on my blindspot project. Currently I'm at 386 films viewed this year.

Breakdown by decade:
6 films from the thirties
1 film from the forties
5 films from the fifties
5 films from the sixties
9 films from the seventies
14 films from the eighties
7 films from the nineties
11 films from the naughts
12 films released in '10s

List of all films seen (w/my score on a 10-scale):
9 Songs (2004) 6.5
All the President's Men (1976) 7.5
Amsterdamned (1988) 6.7 Horror Movie Night
Angel of Fury (1992) 6
Antichrist (2009) 8
Barbe Bleue (2009) 4.5
Barracuda (1978) 4
Belphégor - Le fantôme du Louvre (2001) 4
Blue Valentine (2010) 7
Cop Killers (1973) 7
Cry Your Purple Heart Out (1976) 5
Dark House (2009) 6
Deadly Prey (1987) 7.5 Video Hate Squad
Duck Soup (1933) 7
Flickan som lekte med elden (2009) 7
Green Lantern (2011) 6
Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer (1986) 7.5
Higashi no Eden Gekijôban I: The King of Eden (2009) 6.5
Hobo with a Shotgun (2011) 9
Hot Times at Montclair High (1989) 6
Hunter Prey (2009) 7
I diafanoidi vengono da Marte (1966) 5
Infested (1993) 6.5
It Happened One Night (1934) 7.4
Jûsan-nin no shikaku (2010) 9
Modern Girls (1986) 6.7
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939) 8
Mr. Wong, Detective (1938) 7
Naked Vengeance (1985) 7 BTSNAT
Overlord (1975) 7.7
Payday (1973) 7 rewatch BTSNAT
Pimpin' Pee Wee (2009) 6.7 BTSNAT
Please Don't Eat the Babies (1983) 5.6
Pledge Night (1990) 7 BTSNAT
Popcorn (1991) 6.7 rewatch Horror Movie Night
Queen of Outer Space (1958) 6.7
Red Scorpion (1989) 6.5
Scandalous (1984) 6
Scavenger Hunt (1979) 6 rewatch BTSNAT
Science Crazed (1991) 5 BTSNAT
Shadow (2009) 6.5
Spellbound (1945) 7.4
Super 8 (2011) 7
Swamp Shark (2011) 6
Tarantula (1955) 6.5
The Cycle Savages (1969) 6.5
The Cyclops (1957) 6.6
The Final Sanction (1990) 6.6 BTSNAT
The Ghoul (1933) 7
The Great Mouse Detective (1986) 7
The Jungle Book (1967) 7.7
The Killer Inside Me (2010) 7
The King of Comedy (1982) 8
The Monster That Challenged the World (1957) 6.3
The Mysterious Mr. Wong (1934) 6.6
The Phantom from 10,000 Leagues (1955) 6
The Search for Animal Chin (1987) 7.5 BTSNAT
The Snake (2008) 5.5
The Time Machine (1960) 7.7
The Valley of Gwangi (1969) 6.7
Thou Shalt Not Kill... Except (1985) 6.6
Trolljegeren (2010) 8
Tucker & Dale vs Evil (2010) 8 rewatch
Uchu kara no messeji (1978) 6.6
Unstoppable (2010) 6
Valet Girls (1987) 6
Viva Riva! (2010) 7.7
White Fury (1990) 6
White Rat (1972) 5
X-Men: First Class (2011) 8

  • June New: 66
  • June Re-watch: 4
  • June '11 MTD: 70
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 386

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Viper Guy

I wish I had something to say about the The Snake (2008) but I didn't enjoy it much. The premise is interesting but I think because I didn't care for the characters I didn't care for the film. Dude, Adam Goldstein, joins an image support group so he can fuck a girl. Meh. 5.5 / 10

  • June New: 66
  • June Re-watch: 4
  • June '11 MTD: 70
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 386

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Fast Times in Amsterdam

Hot Times at Montclair High (1989) hit during the decline of great eighties teen sex comedies and it's evident from watching this. It's a familiar trope of three teen boys that in most circumstances should not be friends but guess what? They cross paths and bond in order to help each other out. It's not bad but hardly great. 6 / 10

Amsterdamned (1988) was this week's Horror Movie Night choice and one I've been wanting to view since GGTMC covered it on their podcast. it's a Dick Maas joint and besides being a pretty cool slasher it also features the best boat chase on screen. Good watch and glad I picked up the VHS. 6.7 / 10

  • June New: 65
  • June Re-watch: 4
  • June '11 MTD: 69
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 385

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Time After Time

Another missed classic The Time Machine (1960) is such a wonderful film I'm sad I didn't see it as a child. It's the type that I would have loved immensely esp. since I used to have several adaptations that I would read over and over. Quality sci-fi flick. Almost erases that awful remake from 2002. 7.7 / 10

  • June New: 63
  • June Re-watch: 4
  • June '11 MTD: 67
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 383

Monday, June 27, 2011

I Heart Trolls

Dropped into the Music Box for a big screen assault of trolls in TrollHunter (2010), a secret screening film I missed the last Fantastic Fest. As far as found footage flicks go, this is definitely one of the finer examples. Lots to love. Already look forward to viewing it again. 8 / 10

Grabbed Blue Valentine (2010) from my library knowing it was something I had to see even if the content wasn't my thing. It's a weird film because I mostly hated it and the story-lines and the characters. But the acting here is so incredible it's hard to not recognize that achievement. Michelle Williams is terrific. 7 / 10

  • June New: 62
  • June Re-watch: 4
  • June '11 MTD: 66
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 382

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Killer Fish Komedy

Michael Winterbottom's 9 Songs (2004) was expiring of the Instawatch so I was compelled to finally give it go despite what I had heard about it. And wowsa it's even more explicit than I imagined. I suppose that titillation is the attraction here because the story isn't that good. But a very interesting watch. 6.5 / 10

Swamp Shark (2011) premiered on SyFy and naturally I had to watch. Goes without saying that I'm sucker for killer fish flicks and this one mostly delivers. Kristy Swanson and D.B. Sweeney lead the charge to destroy the giant shark accidentally let loose in a swamp. It's dumb but fun. 6 / 10

Another blindspot film Martin Scorsese's The King of Comedy (1983) lives up to its reputation. Really didn't have much an interest to see this outside of needing to complete my project but I'm now converted. This is a stellar piece of work with an exceptional De Niro performance. Highly recommended if you haven't seen it. 8 / 10

  • June New: 60
  • June Re-watch: 4
  • June '11 MTD: 64
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 380

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Keep on Space Truckin'

The Phantom from 10,000 Leagues (1955) was an Instawatch or maybe Hulu. It's that kind of title. Not a great one but watchable if you enjoy bad b-movies. It's very post-WWII with a monster being created from radiation but also wanted as a weapon. 6 / 10

The Valley of Gwangi (1969) is a film I've always wanted to see so was glad to pick it off NWI. And it's such a fine cowboys and dinosaurs flick with a tragic ending. It has a traveling circus too. Super enjoyable with excellent Ray Harryhausen stopmo. 7 / 10

OMG, Queen of Outer Space (1958) is riot! Credit to TCM for airing some cool old flicks on their Drive-In Thursdays. This is another misogynistic sci-fi where a group of male astronauts land on Venus inhabited by only beautiful woman including Zsa Zsa Gabor! Awesomeness. I wish to own this movie! 6.7 / 10
The War of the Planets (1966) is another gem courtesy of TCM. This one directed by one of my personal favorites Antonio Margheriti and is a loose sequel to his Wild, Wild Planet, which I adore. Unfortunately this film isn't as strong or as entertaining and rather convoluted despite the awesome cocktail party in space. 5 / 10

  • June New: 57
  • June Re-watch: 4
  • June '11 MTD: 61
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 377

Friday, June 24, 2011

Scandal in Space

Maybe Shadow (2009) was expiring on NWI that motivated me to view it or I was just curious. Either way Federico Zampaglione has directed a not-so-unique mountain-hostage thriller with a few genuine scares. It mostly works altho the final sequence isn't entirely clear. 6.5 / 10

Scandalous (1984), another NWI viewing, is a Rob Cohen directed, Larry Cohen written comedy that follows Robert Hays as an investigative reporter that gets the table turned on him as he's now the subject. It's a silly farce but enjoyable for what it is. Plus a punk rock concert! 6 / 10

Kinji Fukasaku's Message from Space (1978) is something to behold. This is not a good film but one I adore. And the costuming is incredible. I knew of Vic Morrow and Sonny Chiba's involvement here but didn't realize this also features Hiroyuki Sanada (Twilight Samurai!). I so want 1/6 scale figures of the Gavanas soldiers and emperor. I later learned that my friend pAT actually viewed this in the cinema when it was released. Man, how cool would that be?! 6.6 / 10

  • June New: 53
  • June Re-watch: 4
  • June '11 MTD: 57
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 373

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Challenging Christ

The Monster That Challenged the World (1957) is yet another fifties sci-fi giant monster movie. But the monsters here are giant mollusks released below the sea after an earthquake. Mostly humorous. 6.3 / 10

Besides Bruce Dern as punk biker the best thing about The Cycle Savages (1969) is the premise: gang of bikers hellbent on destroying the hands of a sketch artist… because he draws pictures of the bikers. He draws pictures of them. So they want to crush his hands. 6.5 / 10

Yeah, I've put off watching Lars von Trier's Antichrist (2009) far longer than I should have. And for no good reason, really. Now that I've seen it I think it's a brilliant film. Willem Dafoe is so damn good. Charlotte Gainsbourg continues selecting some crazy roles. May pick it up on blu-ray some day. 8 / 10

  • June New: 50
  • June Re-watch: 4
  • June '11 MTD: 54
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 370

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Mystery Corn

The Mysterious Mr. Wong (1934) is a different Wong than Karloff's detective Wong (yet still directed by William Nigh). Actually this is Bela Lugosi's Wong and he's not quite a nice guy either. This Wong wants to possess all the magic coins of Confucius that will allow him to rule China. Or something. 6.6 / 10

Popcorn (1991) is this week's Horror Movie Night selection and a fun one to revisit. It's another fun "set in a movie theater" flick. How can you not like those? Jill Schoelen is so cute. Here's the blurb I wrote about Popcorn on my last viewing. 6.7 / 10

  • June New: 47
  • June Re-watch: 4
  • June '11 MTD: 51
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 367

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Serial Detecting

One of my favorite aspects of Netflix Instant Watch is the ability to watch items that I'd probably not have a chance to see otherwise. Case in point, Boris Karloff as James Lee Wong in the Mr. Wong, Detective (1938) series. Karloff is so much fun to watch, esp. his take on an Asian again (see: Mask of Fu Manchu). 7 / 10

Eden of the East the Movie I: The King of Eden (2009) was also on the Instawatch so gave it a whirl. Very convoluted anime (big surprise) and not compelling enough for me to seek out the second movie. Visually cool but meh. 6.5 / 10

Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer (1986) is another film that's alluded me over the years. Now I know why this flick always seems to get some rave recommendations. This is solid, sadistic and damn good. Michael Rooker is lights out. 7.5 / 10

  • June New: 46
  • June Re-watch: 3
  • June '11 MTD: 49
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 365

Monday, June 20, 2011

Gas on the Fire

Was awarded a free pass to an advanced screening of Viva Riva! (2010) at the Music Box Theater, one of their own distributed films. From the trailer this looked to be a genuinely unique film and it is. Set in capital of Congo, it's a modern African noir about a gasoline heist gone bad and the revenge and brutality that occurs as a result. Director Djo Munga has written a group of captivating characters (in particular, Patsha Bay as Riva) that keep you invested in the twisted plot of gas gangsters and corrupt officials. Very worthy movie. 7.7 / 10

Catherine Breillat's Barbe Bleue (2009) a.k.a Bluebeard was Instawatch and expiring. Possibly the only reason to view this. The fairy tale premise should work if the execution was better but even with decent visuals this film is painful to watch. Uninteresting and lacking a compelling note to save its life. Not sure what people find good in this because it's just boring. 4.5 / 10

  • June New: 43
  • June Re-watch: 3
  • June '11 MTD: 46
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 362

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Mission to Moscow

Since the Projection Booth recently interviewed Dolph Lundgren and covered his seminal film Red Scorpion (1989) directed by Joe Zito. Figured it was time to give my VHS a spin. It's a little long in the tooth but great nevertheless as his character transforms. Cool to watch this then immediately listen to Mike and Justin discuss it on their podcast. Check it out here: Episode Five: Red Scorpion. 6.5 / 10

Stuart Cooper's Overlord (1975) was expiring on NWI so time to watch. Mesmerizing film following this young soldier as he prepares to join the army and go to war for D-Day. Poignant and recommended viewing. 7.7 / 10

Modern Girls (1986) calls back to nostalgic interest of mid-eighties Los Angeles (think Less Than Zero). This is pure light comedy that is one of those "it happens all in one crazy night" flicks. Three girls (including hottie Virginia Madsen and Daphne Zuniga) head out for a night on the town with their bestie Clifford and antics ensue. Fun watch. 6.7 / 10

  • June New: 41
  • June Re-watch: 3
  • June '11 MTD: 44
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 360

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Kaa Stew

The Marx Brothers' Duck Soup (1933) was on my blindspot list and I'm an ass for not seeing this brilliant comedy sooner. So much to love here. Everyone should see this film in their life. 8 / 10

Disney's animated The Jungle Book (1967) is a film I know I've watched in my childhood but having such a vague recollection I had to give it an honest watch. It holds up in every way and I enjoy this more than most of Disney's more recent animated Jungle work (ex. Lion King, Tarzan, etc.). Excellent voice acting. 7.7 / 10

Belphégor - Le fantôme du Louvre a.k.a. Belphegor, Phantom of the Louvre (2001) caught my attention on the French film shelf at the library. I wish it hadn't because this is a disaster. Sophie Marceau is haunted by a resurrected spirit in this silly mummy flick that lacks a point and adequate FX. View only as a curiosity otherwise avoid. 4 / 10

  • June New: 38
  • June Re-watch: 3
  • June '11 MTD: 41
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 357

Friday, June 17, 2011

Emerald One-Eye

The Cyclops (1957) ran on TCM's Drive-In B-movie night. It's another Bert Gordon flick that is essentially an alternate take on his Amazing Colossal Man, kinda like a prequel in a way but with a different origin (both films came out in the same year). I'm a fan of this and Lon Chaney Jr. 6.6 / 10

Please Don't Eat the Babies (1983) a.k.a Island Fury is a fairly weaksauce cannibal slash hostage tale that has few merits but not enough to make it memorable. 5.6 / 10

Dropped into the theater for a non-3D screening of Green Lantern (2011). Disappointment is about all I can say. I didn't think the effects were that bad but it's the story that really brings it down. That and Blake Lively. Not one I care to revisit. Maybe someday but not soon. 6 / 10

Was able to rinse my eyes later at the Music Box for a midnight screening of Hobo with a Shotgun (2011) with a few of my Chicago friends. It's as if I didn't see any other movies on this day because Hobo is so fucking good. If it's possible to fall in love with a movie in its opening minutes, this would qualify. Cannot express my passion for what Jason Eisener was able to accomplish with his love letter to 80s exploitation cinema. Look forward to many viewings of this in my future. Thank you, Rutger Hauer and Mr. Eisener. 9 / 10

  • June New: 35
  • June Re-watch: 3
  • June '11 MTD: 38
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 354

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Predator Politicians

Ah, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939). A staple Frank Capra classic with all the sentimental hallmarks you'd expect and want. If you buy into this world the movie fires beautifully on every cylinder. But it's also terribly sappy that fortunately is overcome by its charm. Jimmy Stewart is typically excellent but I really like Claude Rains the most. Yes, another blindspot film. 8 / 10

For a killer fish flick Barracuda (1978) should be much better than it is. Unfortunately the killer fish premise is nearly nonexistent and lost to a crime plot with the baddies killing off the reporters that will expose their evil plan. Terrible. Oh hey, there's Cliff Emmich again! 4 / 10

  • June New: 31
  • June Re-watch: 3
  • June '11 MTD: 34
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 350

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Meeces to Pieces

Another recent VHS pick-up Thou Shalt Not Kill... Except (1985) a.k.a. Stryker's War caught my eyes for the evening. Decent Vietnam vet revenge on hippies thriller with some nice exploitation accents. Also features Sam Raimi as the cult leader! 6.6 / 10

Can't recall why I decided to view The Great Mouse Detective (1986) outside of not having seen it. Probably because it's another Disney animated feature that seems to go unnoticed. What really makes it great is all the things that you wouldn't see in a Disney animation today like smoking and drinking and gun violence. And for a take on Sherlock Holmes, I like the movie a lot. 7 / 10

  • June New: 29
  • June Re-watch: 3
  • June '11 MTD: 32
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 348

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Rock Hard Eight

Dipping into VHS collection I was in need of some Rothrock so I gave Angel of Fury (1992) a spin. Not a very good flick but enjoyable simply because of Rothrock running and chasing and being chased. And kicking some ass in-between. 6 / 10

Hitchcock's Spellbound (1945) was also on my blindspot list but for some reason I thought I had seen it before. But soon I realized I had not so it made for a new watch and a good one even though you know how it's attempting to manipulate the viewer. Love Ingrid Bergman in this. 7.4 / 10

Headed out to the theater to finally catch Super 8 (2011), which I had been lukewarm in seeing based on the advanced buzz. And I gotta agree, J.J. Abrams doesn't entirely succeed with this film despite some good character moments. Still a good watch and one I'd certainly watch again. Esp. for the amazing performance by Elle Fanning, who steals the movie. 7 / 10

  • June New: 27
  • June Re-watch: 3
  • June '11 MTD: 30
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 346

Monday, June 13, 2011

Ticked Off

Settling in after that amazing weekend in Austin I caught up with a missed Horror Movie Night selection Ticks a.k.a Infested(1993). This a fun bug flick with a pretty good cast including Clint Howard and Seth Green. 6.5 / 10

From my blindspot project I knocked All the President's Men (1976) off the list. Such a quality film with brilliant moments throughout. Hoffman and Redford are so great together. 7.5 / 10

  • June New: 24
  • June Re-watch: 3
  • June '11 MTD: 27
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 343

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Yeah, Austin

Still in Austin and spent the day with two of my favorite Austinites, Carolee (@leiabox) and Topher (@ThinkZombie). They were gracious to take me out for brunch then to several cool stores (Toy Joy!) and even to Topher's workplace. Afterward we had a few beers at Crown & Anchor (excellent beer bar with Sunday specials and good local beer). I also got to visit their awesome home and have dinner at John & Becky's home. What a great day in Austin with great people!

After dinner we headed down to The Ritz Alamo Drafthouse (my first visit there!) for the inaugural VIDEO HATE SQUAD event, a big screen viewing of a VHS tape! How fucking cool is that? And the movie… David Prior's Deadly Prey (1987) starring his brother Ted. Such a entertaining film in all the best ways of bad. Love this movie so much. David Campbell and Ted Prior were also on hand for a Q&A after the screening. Unreal. Seeing this film on the big screen and meeting Ted made the night and capped an already amazing day in Austin. 7.5 / 10

Huge thank you to my friends in Austin for making this an incredible weekend.

  • June New: 22
  • June Re-watch: 3
  • June '11 MTD: 25
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 341

Saturday, June 11, 2011

BTSNAT 2.5: BTS Bandits!

Back in Austin at Brian Kelley's home for another awesome installment of BTSNAT! Different set of people for this marathon sitting but still an excellent group to watch movies together for 16+ hours.

As with the last BTSNAT in December, @Noahphex leads with his pick of Scavenger Hunt (1979), a film I had recently watched most of when I discovered it was OOP. Amazing cast yet overly long. Still a fun watch to see these actors interact. Richard Benjamin, Scatman Crothers, Cloris Leachman, Roddy McDowall, Tony Randall, Dirk Benedict, et al. 6 / 10

Next was Micah's (@ReelDistraction) choice of Daryl Duke's Payday (1973), a Rip Torn joint I had seen in recent years after GGTMC covered it. Incredible performance, good film and great ending for this pathetic honky-tonk man. 7 / 10

Josh (@VHSisthetruth) couldn't make this time but provided a hilarious video intro for his film Science Crazed (1991), which is equally hilarious for different reasons. This Canuxploitation film defies all and is nearly inexplicable with its repeated use of footage and bizarre horror. Incredible film bad in every conceivable way yet you cannot stop escape it. 5 / 10 (but one I desperately want to own!)

The only way to follow that was with a little rape-revenge, BK's favorite sub-genre, with his choice of Naked Vengeance (1985). Sleazy and brutal as expected that delivers the goods. Solid entry. 7 / 10

I did locate an adequate David Prior flick for my selection with The Final Sanction (1990), starring his brother Ted Prior along side Robert Z'Dar. Kind of a ridiculous premise to pit two warriors against each to decide a greater outcome between two nations but just go with it. Stupid but good enough for this crowd, thankfully. 6.6 / 10

Jenni, @Noahphex's wife, joined us for this outing and her film was voted next, The Search for Animal Chin (1987). I adore this film and the on-location skating and shredding including the half-pipe at Tony Hawk's home. Good fun and apparently a flick my brother watched a hella lot back in the day. 7.5 / 10

Now it was time for Damon's (@zombiefreak) movie (so glad Damon make the trip as he was missed in December). His original choice wouldn't play but his back-up proved just as worthy as we belly-laughed throughout Pledge Night a.k.a. A Hazing in Hell (1990). Damn riot of a horror flick that is great with a crowd. 7.5 / 10

The final film of the BTSNAT marathon is always a Brian Trenchard-Smith movie. We were treated to his take on the Porky's franchise, Pimpin' Pee Wee (2009) a.k.a. Porky's: The College Years. Been looking forward to this since BK mentioned it at the last BTSNAT. Turns out it's a better-than-average installment that all of us managed to remain awake and entertained. 6.7 / 10

Somehow we managed to cram in an extra film and still finish before 5AM but damn what a marathon of movies and an even better time with friends. So glad I could make it down for BTSNAT 2.5 and hope I'm there for the next one.

  • June New: 21
  • June Re-watch: 3
  • June '11 MTD: 24
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 340

Friday, June 10, 2011

Tales of the Evil Side

I'm back in Austin! After an evening of beer and BBQ at the great Salt Lick outside of Austin, a visit to Pinballz and Rivendell, @Noahphex threw on Tucker & Dale vs Evil (2010) to close the night. Having seen it already and loving it, I was game for another viewing. Still hilarious. 8 / 10

  • June New: 15
  • June Re-watch: 1
  • June '11 MTD: 16
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 332

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Furry Spider

In searching for an ideal movie to take to BTSNAT 2.5 tomorrow I decided it should be a David Prior flick since he seems to be all the talk lately. White Fury (1990) is one such film in my VHS stock so I screened it to see if it was worthy. It's not bad but also not good enough despite a decent premise of crooks taking some teens hostage in a remote cabin in the mountains. Just lacks the punch. 6 / 10
Tarantula (1955) I had recorded from TCM since they started showing B-movies for their Thursday Drive-In programming this month. This is, of course, another Jack Arnold giant monster flick and also features the hotty Mara Corday. Entertaining. 6.5 / 10

  • June New: 15
  • June Re-watch: 0
  • June '11 MTD: 15
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 331

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Body Count

A short while back I caught the trailer for Cop Killers (1973). Instantly I knew this was a film I wanted to see. It's very much a grindhouse flick featuring a couple of asshole hippies that kill some cops then go on run terrorizing others during the chase. Such a cool movie. Wish Walter Cichy had made more like this. 7 / 10

  • June New: 13
  • June Re-watch: 0
  • June '11 MTD: 13
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 329

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Something Happens

For my blindspot project I finally viewed Frank Capra's It Happened One Night (1934). Certainly a fun film and Clark Gable is excellent. Good chemistry with Claudette Colbert. Didn't love it as much as I wanted to but still enjoyable and a classic. 7.4 / 10

  • June New: 12
  • June Re-watch: 0
  • June '11 MTD: 12
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 328

Monday, June 06, 2011

Ghoulish Hunt

Sandy Collora's Hunter Prey (2009) was added to Netflix Instawatch and I didn't hesitate to watch it after the viewing the cool factor of Collora's Batman: Dead End. It's a groovy sci-fi western that reverses the human / alien roles and looks great considering its low budget. Very tight. Look forward to his next endeavor. 7 / 10

The Ghoul (1933) was also on NWI and features Boris Karloff in an early take on the Mummy mythology. Enjoyed this quite a bit. 7 / 10

  • June New: 11
  • June Re-watch: 0
  • June '11 MTD: 11
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 327

Sunday, June 05, 2011

Housing Horror

Dark House (2009), a FrightFest flick, I recently picked up for a couple of bucks from a Blockbuster sale. Was interested only because it features Jeffrey Combs and I'll watch anything he's in even if it's not so great. This isn't but an okay watch about a group of people making a haunted house in a haunted house. 6 / 10

  • June New: 9
  • June Re-watch: 0
  • June '11 MTD: 9
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 325

Saturday, June 04, 2011

She be Valeting

Took a trip back to my hometown to visit my father who was visiting with my step-mom to care for my stepbrother (long, sad story). It was my dad's birthday and a rare opportunity to spend time with him again. While there I caught Valet Girls (1987) on NWI, another Rafal Zielinski joint. Cute comedy about a singer working as a valet girl hoping to get discovered. 6 / 10

  • June New: 8
  • June Re-watch: 0
  • June '11 MTD: 8
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 324

Friday, June 03, 2011

Killing in Flames

Been looking forward to Michael Winterbottom's The Killer Inside Me (2010) for quite some time. Glad my library had it on the shelf. I like Casey Affleck even tho he seems to approach his characters the same way. I appreciate his raspy delivery. Good watch with some gasping brutality. 7 / 10

Also my excellent library the blu-ray of The Girl Who Played with Fire (2009), another film I've been overdue on since watching the first installment. Heard this and Hornet's Nest weren't as good as the first film but I still found this film really enjoyable. It lacks the suspense from Dragon Tattoo but still a solid flick. Might be appreciated more if not compared to the first film. Noomi Rapace is great. 7 / 10

  • June New: 7
  • June Re-watch: 0
  • June '11 MTD: 7
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 323

Thursday, June 02, 2011

No Stopping the Mutants

The other feature on that DVD I rented from Lion Video was White Rat (1972) another forgotten gritty crime flick from the seventies. And not any better than How to Score with Girls. It's as forgettable as it is forgotten. Again context makes it interesting. 5 / 10

Picked up the blu for Unstoppable (2010) from my library. Pretty much what I expected from Tony Scott, a somewhat engaging but entirely silly film. I like Chris Pine here but so over Denzel. 6 / 10

Hit the midnight screening at Showplace 12 for X-Men: First Class (2011) with small audience. Nothing about the trailer or early photos made this compelling to me (other than being another superhero flick) but the advanced buzz was right; this is a good film despite its flaws. Set in the early sixties along with the origin story makes it work. First third is much better than the finale. Fassbender and Bacon steal the show but Matthew Vaughn succeeded in the end. 8 / 10

  • June New: 5
  • June Re-watch: 0
  • June '11 MTD: 5
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 321

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Gettin' Lucky 13

Now that Miike's 13 Assassins (2010) is screening at the Music Box I knew I had to pay a visit to catch this on the big screen. And fortunately they did screen it in theater one. I missed this at Fantastic Fest last year because I opted to see Jeffrey Combs live performance of Nevermore. I don't regret that decision as I knew I'd see 13 Assassins eventually. Thankful that I could see it in the theater as it definitely lives up the high praise. One of Miike's best. Amazing film. 9 / 10

From Lion Video I rented a double DVD that featured How to Score with Girls a.k.a. Cry Your Purple Heart Out (1976). Not a good film as it follows a group of sailors around NYC as they pick up women. But context makes it intriguing nevertheless. 5 / 10

  • June New: 2
  • June Re-watch: 0
  • June '11 MTD: 2
  • June '10 MTD: 64
  • 2011 YTD: 318

May Movie Tally

Here's the round-up for films watched in May...
Watched 48 films in May, another lower than usual total but not bad (still 20 less than last May). 44 were first time views and only 4 were re-watches. Worked on little on my blindspot project but was all over the place. Summer movie season has started so hit 6 films on the big screen (Attack the Block being the best and likely to end up on my Top Ten). Highlight was revisiting Toy Story 3 with my girlfriend, who hadn't seen it and loved it. Currently I'm at 316 films viewed this year.

Breakdown by decade:
2 film from the fifties
3 films from the sixties
13 films from the seventies
10 films from the eighties
2 films from the nineties
9 films from the naughts
14 films released in '10s (7 released in 2011)

List of all films seen (w/my score on a 10-scale):
A Dirty Shame (2004) 7
Almighty Thor (2011) 4
Angels' Brigade (1979) 6
Attack the Block (2011) 9 *cinema
Blacula (1972) 7
Blood Simple. (1984) 7.6
Brewster's Millions (1985) 7
Dead Man's Shoes (2004) 7
Despicable Me (2010) 6.5
Dial M for Murder (1954) 8.5
Dreamaniac (1986) 6 rewatch Horror Movie Night
Due Date (2010) 6.5
Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (2005) 7
Explorers (1985) 6.8
Fast Five (2011) 8 *cinema
From Paris with Love (2010) 7.5
Going to Pieces: The Rise and Fall of the Slasher Film (2006) 7
H.O.T.S. (1979) 6
Made in U.S.A. (1966) 7.5
Misterio en la isla de los monstruos (1981) 6
Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills (1996) 8
Paranormal Activity 2 (2010) 7
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (2011) 6 *cinema
Priest (2011) 6 *cinema
Raptor Island (2004) 4
Salt (2010) 7 rewatch
Scorpion (1986) 6
Scream 4 (2011) 7 *cinema
Some Like It Hot (1959) 7.5
Sorority Row (2009) 5
Special Effects (1984) 6.5
Spellcaster (1992) 6.5
Splinter (2008) 7.5 rewatch
Student Bodies (1981) 6
Survival Quest (1989) 7
ThanksKilling (2009) 4
The Abomination (1986) 6.5 Horror Movie Night
The Brotherhood of Satan (1971) 6.5
The Green Slime (1968) 6
The Hidden (1987) 7.7
The Ice Pirates (1984) 7
The Naked Kiss (1964) 7.6
The Yes Men (2003) 7
Thor (2011) 7 *cinema
Toy Soldiers (1984) 6
Toy Story 3 (2010) 9.2 rewatch
Trilogy of Terror (1975) 7.5
Vampires Suck (2010) 5

  • May New: 44
  • May Re-watch: 4
  • May '11 Total: 48
  • May '10 Total: 68
  • 2011 Total: 316