Saturday, December 26, 2009

Shark Attack (2003)

Casper van Dien is Steven, a marine biologist who heads to Africa due to a request from a scientist friend for help. When he arrives he discovers that his friend has been eaten by sharks. Along with the man's sister Corine, Steven decides to look into the death as well as figuring out why he was called to Africa.

His friend's partner, Dr. Craven, is testing an unapproved drug for cancer treatment on local residents. Steven is outraged and heads into the hospital to look at everyone's charts, which is confusing since he's a marine biologist and not a doctor.

The local fishermen and business owners are being negatively affected by the shark attacks, and there are many foreclosures in town. Add the tribesmen who do not want anyone bothering the sharks, and everyone is on edge and ready to snap.

The villains are easy to spot and the outcome is predictable. The sharks are in separate footage from the actors. There is no carnage other than the gross looking photos of shark attack victims.

Headless Horseman (2007)

Seven friends heading to a Halloween party take a short cut down a dirt road overgrown with bushes and end up running over a bear trap in the middle of the road. A tow truck that just happens to be in the woods brings them to the town of Wormwood, which we are told is where the legend of the headless horseman really originated.

Years ago the townfolk beheaded a man who was murdering children and every seven years he comes back to town to collect seven heads. If he doesn't, the town and all it's people will disappear from the face of the Earth.

The college kids aren't all that bright and aren't very likable, so it doesn't really matter when they die. With each head the horseman gets, sinewy strands come out of his neck and begin to form a new head.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

I Love You Man (2009)

After Peter decides to get married, he realizes he doesn't have any male friends. His friends have always been females. When he over hears his fiances friends tell her a man without male friends becomes clingy and possessive after marriage, Peter sets out to find a friend who can be his best man.

Peter gets set up on man dates by his gay brother, who sets him up with an obnoxious guy from the health club, and his mother, who unintentionally sets him up on an actual date.

When Peter meets Sidney at the open house he's having at Lou Ferrignos, they hit it off and Peter discovers they have a mutual love of Rush. The friendship starts to get in the way of Peter's relationship with his fiance Zooey, which makes Peter start questioning his life.

Paul Rudd and Jason Segal are both very likable as actors and I enjoyed them in this film. While there are some uncomfortable scenes, as well as various plot points and outcomes that are predictable, overall I liked the film and parts of it made me laugh out loud.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Against the Dark (2008)

A virus has infected most of Earth's population turning them into vampires zombie creatures that kill humans. Six survivors roam through a vacant hospital trying to avoid the creatures and find their way to the security exit.

All the characters do stupid things which put them in harms way. They keep unintentionally splitting up, even after the hunters arrive to save them. There is no explanation as to why they believe they will be stuck in the hospital if they can't get to the security exit before the generator shuts off. Why can't they just leave the way they came in?

I have no idea if the creatures in this film are supposed to be zombies or vampires. They are referred to in the description as vampires. In the movie they are called vampires and mutants, but they act like zombies. They eat internal organs, but they also drink blood. What the hell are they?

I suppose it really doesn't matter because Steven Seagal is a hunter and he's going to kill them. Seagal isn't in the movie very much, but when he is, he and his team of hunters swing swords and kill creatures. Once again, what they are is questionable since they can be killed with a gun or a sword, and you don't have to put a stake in their heart or destroy their brain. Lazy writing or pushing the envelope? You decide.

To sum it up, when we were about twenty minutes into it, my friend said, "wow this is a lot worse than I thought it would be." She was right, but I still liked it better than the big budget GI Joe which we watched right after this.

G.I. Joe (2009)

Cobra has stolen the government's secret weapon, nanobots that destroy everything they touch and form a widening path of destruction until the killswitch deactivates them. The Joes are out to retrieve the stolen nanobots before anyone gets hurt. That's the whole movie in a nutshell.

The problem with this type of film is that it's all loud noises and cgi. The characters spout one liners, and the movies is full of cliches. I especially liked when the entire control room stood up and cheered after a tense "will they or won't they make it" scenario.

The new recruits intuitively know how to work all the top secret military equipment without any training. Their subsequent destruction of property in Paris while chasing the bad guys and using this equipment may rival the destruction caused by the bad guys.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Dance of the Dead (2008)

The town's nuclear power plant is spouting green smoke and the local gravedigger is corralling the dead that try to get out of the graves. On prom night when the dateless scifi club head to the cemetery to hunt ghosts, they find themselves attacked by zombies.

As the zombies overrun the town, the group bands together with other students to try to warn their classmates at the prom.

It's an enjoyable film, but the glowing reviews I read made me expect more from it. I do have to give credit to the zombies who launch out of their graves and begin running next to the scifi club. It looks really cool and it isn't cgi.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

The Beast (1996)

Peter Benchley remakes Jaws with a giant squid. Whip Dalton is a fisherman who knows there is something in the ocean killing people. Schuyler Graves who runs the town, decides to send some less honest fishermen out to kill whatever is causing the deaths. The town is going to celebrate Founders Day so god forbid he should keep vacationers and celebrants away from the water. Of course things don't go as planned and Graves is constantly thwarting Dalton's efforts for keeping people safe.

The movie was made for tv and is three hours long, which it doesn't need to be. There isn't anything new here and if it were a tighter script, perhaps it would have been more exciting. As it was, you could predict who would live, who would die, and when there was going to be a big problem with that darn giant squid.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

She Beast (1966)

Newlyweds Veronica and Philip go to Romania where they met Count Van Helsing who tells them about the local lake which was cursed by an ancient witch after the townsfolk killer her. After the couple get in a fight with the peeping tom innkeeper, they drive off and accidentally crash into the cursed lake where Veronica's body is taken over by the witch. Philip teams up with Van Helsing to try to save Veronica before the witch can possess her forever.

It's got the typical pacing of most 1960s horror movies. The witch looks exactly like the cover photo, which is pretty gross. But to those who like modern gore, it probably won't bother them at all.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Final Days of Planet Earth (2006)

The basic plot revolves around Lloyd, a pompous archaeologist who discovers that aliens have come to Earth and are disguising themselves as humans while they take over the planet. Lloyd teams up with a few others in an attempt to stop the invasion. Lloyd is not a likable character and I found myself repeatedly getting annoyed with him and his compatriots.

The movie focuses more on story than action, which would work better if it weren't so convoluted. When it's Lloyd's turn at city hall, he goes through the door for his meeting and has to descend numerous flights of stairs and walk down a maintenance corridor to get to a door. Would anyone really do that? I'd think they sent me through the wrong door, but Lloyd and everyone else just keeps walking.

The movie was made for tv and lasts for three hours. Perhaps it would have been better if it had only been half as long. The sound was off by five seconds on the second dvd. Someone would speak, but you'd hear nothing. Then it would cut to the next person, and you'd hear the first persons voice. I guess quality control wasn't that important as this was on a cheap dvd set. But it did make for some funny moments when Darryl Hannah's lips moved but a man's voice came out. Or a person tripped and fell down to the sound of nothing, while five seconds later there was a scream and a huge crash.