Wednesday, August 6, 2008

REVIEW: Step Brothers (2008)

Just saw "Step Brothers". Another comedy from Judd Apatow and Adam McKay, this time with Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly starring as two immature forty-year olds. It was funny in a "Napolean Dynamite" way but for a budget of sixty-five million dollars it should have been better and funnier. If you liked "Anchorman" you'll probably enjoy it.

Are comedies ever NOT going to involve anyone that comes from Second City improv or the Frat Pack?

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

REVIEW: Hurlyburly (1998)

"Hurlyburly" is a nice little independent film based on the 1984 play by David Rabe. Starring Sean Penn, Kevin Spacey, and Chazz Palimenteri as egotistical, drug-addled studio executives. Existential cocaine-fueled conversations between scumbags in the City of Lost Angels. Expect lots of talking by Sean Penn, who has an entertaining face. Amazing to think that this film is 10 years old, 'cause it still holds up. The cast is excellent; they capture the overwhelmed and immature adult characters, getting fucked up on cocaine and making constant realizations about their lives and the nature of existence. The audience follows only to realize how despicable these people are and how shallow and irrelevant their conversations sound.

RANT: Who are the Jonas Brothers?


Monday, August 4, 2008

REVIEW: Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008)

After seeing the new Hellboy movie, I can't help but be disappointed. Even though it has somehow gotten 88% approval on Rotten Tomatoes, the movie did not feel like an accurate adaptation of the Hellboy and B.P.R.D. series of comics from Dark Horse.

Critics love a director as simple to describe as Guillermo Del Toro: he always uses "mystical", "fantastical" creatures and special effects, like in "Pan's Labyrinth". The problem here is that the look tries too hard. The movie bears close resemblance to "Underworld" and Stephen Sommers movies, and the plot seems very familiar too: an elf prince killing his father and taking his crown or some shit.

Despite the fact that Mike Mignola (creator of Hellboy) co-wrote the script with Guillermo Del Toro, it felt mild compared to the satanic shit that Hellboy gets involved with in the comics. Things are so jam-packed in the movie its hard to gather any real meaning from the film other than the fact that Guillermo Del Toro really loves elves, fairies, and monsters.

REVIEW: Fat Guy Stuck In Internet [adult swim]

If you haven't been watching "Fat Guy Stuck In Internet", you have been missing something special and hilarious. It airs on Adult Swim (Cartoon Network) at 12:15 a.m. every Sunday. Like "Star Wars" meets "Tron" but even more psychedelic and funny. The special effects are retarded awesome.

Watch full episodes at

REVIEW: Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots (PS3)

If you are a fan of video games, and more specific, if you are a fan of Playstation games, no doubt you've heard of "Metal Gear Solid". The first "Metal Gear Solid" game came out in 1998 and pretty much changed the landscape for stealth games. Created by genius Hideo Kojima, "Metal Gear Solid" combined tactics and serious game play with an EPIC storyline that still rivals the best action movies I've seen. Thanks is also in order for Yoji Shinkawa, the character designer and artist responsible for the amazing look and feel of "Metal Gear Solid". There are not many video games that you look at in awe of the artwork, the storyline, and the voice acting, in addition to the game play. "Metal Gear Solid", and its three subsequent sequels are perhaps the closest to a masterpiece that video games have ever reached.

Having said that, the new "Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots" marks Hideo Kojima's first foray onto the Playstation 3, which provides him with the ability to better already superb graphics. He really amps up the plot line, placing Snake in the middle of a ridiculous Middle Eastern war involving genetics, nuclear weapons, and world domination. One of the ideas in "Guns of the Patriots" is that wars will be fought by opposing private military companies (PMCs). Every soldier on the battlefield is controlled by nanomachines controlled by a single network, Sons of the Patriots (SOP). Snake's arch-rival decides to take over the network, thus taking over all the soldiers in the world and takin' over Earth.

The "Metal Gear Solid 4" storyline might confuse and anger Americans that aren't used to lots of dialog and don't recognize all the cameos by characters from the other "Metal Gear" games. It's alright. There has got to be at least four hours of cut scene in the game, so if you aren't a huge fan of the storyline you will probably bitch about it. As usual, the plot is totally melodramatic and ludicrous, and plenty of people probably wouldn't enjoy it, BUT the impossible storyline is more interesting than most other games. It won't change your life, but it is a good end to a long-lasting series of games.

Friday, August 1, 2008

PREVIEW: Watchmen (Coming 2009)

After Comic-Con 2008, the only real news that anyone cares about is the "Watchmen" movie. If you don't know the "Watchmen", I recommend doing yourself a favor and giving the graphic novel a try. It is written by one of the most influential comic writers in history, the strange reclusive genius Alan Moore. If you are a nerd, you need to do yourself a favor and pick that book UP. Both the writing and the artwork are some of the best in the spotty history of serious comic books.

So "Watchmen" was and still holds up as an excellent, intelligent superhero story. Obviously, studio logic would dictate that it is time to be made into a movie. The "Watchmen" movie has taken a long time to be successfully adapted into film because it is so long, dense, and vast in scope (Mars, Antartica, other cool shit). Even my boy Terry Gilliam turned it down, deeming the comic "unfilmable". But in the age where literally 4 out of 5 movies is based on some sort of comic book, it was unavoidable that "Watchmen" would catch the money-symbol eyes of Warner Bros. and their helpful little asset, DC Comics.

Reasonable. Now everyone and their mother has probably seen the "Watchmen" trailer before "The Dark Knight", and nerds have leaned over and explained what the fuck the movie is about to the uneducated masses. The only issue I have with the whole project is the director: Zack Snyder? Who is he to think he can pull this off? He probably weaseled his way into this movie knowing the already-established fan base and well-regarded storyline (the only graphic novel on TIME's Best 100 English-Language Novels Since 1923). Anyway, here's the trailer:

The song is "The Beginning Is The End Is The Beginning" by the Smashing Pumpkins.