Archive | September, 2010

31 Nights of Horror

30 Sep

What horrors await?

For some folks,  that chill in the air when October rolls around speaks to them of football games and candy apples, mulled wine and vibrant leaves. For me, it speaks of the tingle that creeps down your spine when you know the killer’s in the room, but that poor girl at Camp Crystal Lake doesn’t. That gotta-hide-your-eyes dread in the pit of your stomach or that fight-or-flight heartbeat after a good jump scare. After a summer’s worth of big budget action flicks and before Oscar season sets in, well, that’s the prime time for some bloody good gore. I wanted to mark the first Halloween season for this site in a big way. It’s simply not good enough to go to all the new horror movies in theaters (plus that’s cost-prohibitive). A couple of essays on my favorite scares doesn’t cut the mustard. Then, I hit on a great plan:

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Slasher (2004)

30 Sep

They earn a (mostly honest) living by slash, slash, slashing prices! (Kevin, from left to right, Slasher and Mudd)

A few weeks ago, I watched “The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard.” While I was right in thinking it would be stupid, I was wrong in assuming it would also sustain entertainment value. I should have picked “Slasher,” the unbelievable biographical documentary of a real-life car lot slasher sale auteur Michael “just call me Slasher” Bennett. Continue reading

Elvis on Tour (1972)

21 Sep

Yes, he's starting to go to seed a little at this point, but The King is as riveting as ever.

More concert film than documentary, “Elvis on Tour” is light on offering real insight into Elvis’ life. And, I suspect for most people, the music is not what you typically think of as Elvis music; these concerts feature him performing a lot of covers, a handful of new songs and a scant few of his classic hits. What’s surprising is how little any of this matters. Elvis Presley is perhaps unparalleled as a performer, and this film illustrates that beautifully. Continue reading

Cabaret (1972)

16 Sep

It's about decadence ... and Nazis. But mostly decadence.

It’s always kind of difficult for me when I watch a movie that I know is a beloved classic and then I don’t love it. I start thinking “What’s wrong with me? What am I not getting about this movie?” In the case of “Cabaret,” I believe it hasn’t aged well, but I’m somewhat at a loss for why, exactly, the pieces just don’t come together for me. Continue reading

The Girl Who Played With Fire (2009)

13 Sep

Don't let this photo fool you. This film is boring.

Lisbeth Salander captured the world’s attention in the wildly successful “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.” The character’s complex blend of indifference, intellect and sex appeal proved irresistible for readers and film audiences alike. Unfortunately, “The Girl Who Played With Fire,” the second installment in the Salander trilogy, isn’t as compelling as the initial offering, and the marked decrease in strength of story casts serious doubts on the trilogy’s finale. Continue reading

TiMER (2009)

8 Sep

So if he doesn't make my TiMER go off, but he's really cute, is it wrong to make out with him?

From the concept of a single soulmate for every person to questioning the purpose of relationships that don’t last, “TiMER” is a little movie that takes on big questions and almost succeeds in answering them. Continue reading

The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard (2009)

4 Sep

In this corner, trying hard to win your affection yet failing miserably: Our Heroes.

Remember not so long ago during the “Kick-Ass” discussion when I cautioned against using a descriptive word in your title if you couldn’t guarantee said word? You guessed it, “The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard” doesn’t deliver, um, the goods. Not by a long shot. Continue reading

(500) Days of Summer (2009)

1 Sep

People this attractive shouldn't be allowed to be together. It ruins the gene pool for the rest of us.

My inner cynic thought I would hate “(500) Days of Summer.” I don’t like many romantic movies, much less romantic comedies. I get tired of the drooling fanboy worship of Zooey Deschanel (who is a fine actress, but come on!). The movie seemed overly hipster-y and slightly twee. My inner cynic was, however, wrong. Continue reading