Review: Hot Fuzz (2007)

“You do know there are more guns in the country than there are in the city?”
– DS Andy Wainwright

SYNOPSIS: A skilled London police officer is transferred to a small town that’s harbouring a dark secret. – via IMDB

Man, you gotta hand it to this movie, it totally goes for the entertainment factor, and is so heavily laced with dry, witty humour throughout. So, let me get right down to it: Hot Fuzz is fantastic comedy, and Simon Pegg and Nick Frost work absolute wonders together to bring this story to life on our screens.

Nicholas Angel is not the most sympathetic character out there, and most often you laugh at him while he is being a pain in the ass. Soon, though, his life is upside down and he is essentially banished to the countryside, and that is where the adventure begins. Hot Fuzz paints this little town as super non-descript and bland, but something’s cracking here. The colleagues Angel gets at the new police station are great, and nobody is mincing about that they don’t like him or his big city-ness.

Angel and Danny Butterman become fast friends, but it takes time for their relationship to develop, and it is a friendship that grows that is so sweet to watch, and super hilarious, too. Another point of entertainment is, without a doubt, their pub trips.

Hot Fuzz is also really well made, too. It looks and sounds good, even if it is a little choppy at times and not as smooth as you would hope. Timothy Dalton makes his appearances here, of which I am quite the fan. Bill Nighy is dangled in front of us and snatched away super fast, as is Martin Freeman, but it all works. While Nicholas Angel is a bit uptight and a pain initially, you cannot help but root for the guy throughout.

Eventually the movie devolves into all out hilarity and utter lunacy, and you are so drawn in. All the jokes are hard hitting and fast, they land well, and the movie is completely aware of how totally over the top it has gone and embraces it, owns it, drives it all home. You cannot help but have a laugh. The violence is over the top, the fights are insane, every cliché you can shake a stick at has been dragged up, and everyone is having a right time of it, and that is evident.

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Review: Star Wars Episode VIII – The Last Jedi (2017)

“Let the past die. Kill it, if you have to. That’s the only way to become what you are meant to be.”
– Kylo Ren

SYNOPSIS: Rey develops her newly discovered abilities with the guidance of Luke Skywalker, who is unsettled by the strength of her powers. Meanwhile, the Resistance prepares to do battle with the First Order. – via IMDB

Oh my gooooosh! I loved this. Yeah, I hear there is some hate, but there is a lot of love, too. I am one of those that thought this was really good. After The Force Awakens, I have been so amped to see where the story goes, and The Last Jedi totally rewarded for my excitement, for the most part (even with the little niggles).

Kylo Ren is baaaaack bitches, and he is freaking awesome! This is something my husband and I will debate for many years to come. This time around we get to see more of Adam Driver’s face and that gorgeous hair, and man, we totally got to explore more of his conflict. Imagine your legacy is Anakin and Luke Skywalker, the light side and the dark? Polar opposites. Imagine that you have been manipulated by someone and it was easy to do so because someone you trusted betrayed you (from what you could see), and you are a kid? Confusion! I love it. I could watch that battle rage forever.

There were new things introduced in this one, too. Kylo’s new plan  has definitely piqued my interest. War profiteering reared its head in here, too, so there was some social commentary on the go. I was so pleased to see BB-8 back in action, he is so adorable! Poe, too, is back in action. The Last Jedi brings up some really solid, strong moments for our female cast, and has some awesome action sequences, too. So it is great to watch like that. I quite enjoyed Beneicio del Toro’s appearance, and would like to see if he pops up again.

Let’s not deny that the movie had flaws – those freaking porgs annoyed me. Cute the first time you saw them, and then they were just jammed in all over the show. There is the super cheese between Finn and Rose, which also got a bit annoying quickly. Also, a lot of questions that JJ Abrams had set up in The Force Awakens were glibly answered here (I am hoping they go back and give us real, fleshed out answers, because if these are the answers, that is bitterly disappointing). Another thing, the story is not overly solid, and the pacing is a little off at times, but nothing too extreme. I was totally engrossed, even with the hiccups. I adore Andy Serkis, for reals, and I really wish there was more to Snoke than we eventually got – so short lived and a bit meh 😦

There is a lot of back and forth about Luke Skywalker and his role here. I expected to see more Luke Skywalker, and I didn’t think he would be quite so bitter and ready to end the Jedi lines like he has, though it brings up the notion that the Force is not just accessible by a small group of elite individuals. Not sure where this is going, but I will give them enough rope and see what they do with it. Anyway, it was strange to see him go the way he did, but I was really impressed with where his character went later on.

Continuing with unpopular opinion time, Rey is still a flat, bland, annoying character for me. I just don’t get the love man, not at all. Every time she was on screen, I felt like precious time was being wasted. I don’t like her, and it sucks that she is one of our new, major protagonists. Oh well. Also, the whole Skywalker legacy is something to wonder about – where are we going from here? I feel that the original characters have been handled a little more poorly than I expected, to be honest.

Ultimately, I still preferred Abrams’s The Force Awakens over this – it looked better, sounded better, and was handled better, though The Last Jedi is by no means a bad movie and does not deserve the hate being flung its way. There is a hell of a lot to like about it – it is fun, it is dark, there are some new concepts being introduced, and has plenty of action. I am seriously looking forward to watching it again sometime and seeing how it holds up. Maybe because I have mad Abrams love and want him to keep going with the story…

JB & The Chop Do: Amityville: The Awakening (2017)

OMG another one of these mother fuckers…. and there’s like THREE MORE!!! FUCK!!! Why do we do this to ourselves??? BECAUSE WE’RE FUCKING COMMITTED, THAT’S WHY!! COMMITTED LIKE SONS OF BITCHES!!! Can you believe this is the FIFTEENTH Amityville movie we’ve discussed?? GODDAMN! Let me calm down a little bit and have a shot of that white jagermeister that dipshit was drinking in the last one of these we watched. *shoot* *slam* *exhale* aaaaaaaaahhhhhh.

Let’s see what we’ve got here…

SYNOPSIS: A desperate single mother moves with her three children into the notorious, supposedly haunted, real-life Amityville house to try and use its dark powers to cure her comatose son. Things go horribly wrong. – via IMDB

I had never heard of Bella Thorne until I was watching The Babysitter one day and I was all ‘who is this hot chick??’ and looked her up and saw that she was in this new Amityville movie that took forever to get released.

She seems like a reasonable enough actress but I’m sure she was cast more for those 30 minutes she runs around in barely there underwear…

Which I’m not knocking in any way but that did seem a little unusual but, for PG 13 (in the U.S.) we didn’t get any tits or brother on sister sex. We did get a little of this, who looks to be in a lot better shape than the last time I saw her in that miserable Hateful 8 movie.

And I think, for the most part, things were going pretty good in this thing until the last 20 minutes. I know it was 20 minutes because I paused it with 20 minutes left to go sin (inside joke), returned and the rest of it was pretty shit. BUT – overall – this has to be one of the better entries into this miserable franchise.

There are several things I’ve never understood why producers / directors put into movies. I’ve griped about them before and even once made a manifesto of sorts – that page has  a lot of comments so, to keep it short:

  • cell phones and dial tones
  • tires screeching on dirt roads
  • people who don’t smoke conveniently having expensive lighters when it gets dark
  • drivers constantly shifting gears during high speed chases (does their car have eighteen gears or something)
  • when someone turns into a zombie / demon / mutant – why do their fucking teeth always get so fucking pointy??

………………… Exhibit A:

Poor Red (That 70’s Show)… he had a decent part and then got smothered with terrible fucking CGI flies…. and they all went in his mouth… what the fuck??

Oh well… this is not the worst move ever…  it’s not even the wort, which is how I spelled worst three times before I got it right… definitely better than ALL of the other ones except the first one and the Ryan Reynolds one.

Sweet Jesus, these movies are never going to end. As the dear Chop has pointed out, we are committed. Or masochists. Probably a good combination of both. When this movie eventually got released, I was shocked. Why? Eric and I have been waiting for this movie since we started this Amityville franchise in March of 2015 (!!!!!!), and even had other Amityville movies eagerly jump the line to get in before this one did. We thought we were waiting on one. Apparently this franchise had other ideas. But then it came. It finally came. Well hot damn, add it to the crazy list!

I popped this in, my husband took cover and hunkered down with some Battlefield 1, Natasha thought I had officially lost it, Ryan is probably still wondering (like us) whether evil ever dies, and got rolling… and was surprised. Goodness, who knew that there would be a decent instalment?! Now, I need to clarify this here so we are all on the same page: while this movie is by no means a great movie (or even particularly good), if compared to the other offerings in this franchise, it is definitely superior.

There is this piece in the movie where, for movie night, the kid offers up the original, the sequel (we all know how much I loved that one), and the 2005 remake. There was a lot of dissing on remakes, and I just want to put it on record here, the 2005 Amityville Horror is, without a doubt, the best movie in this franchise. So don’t knock it newbie, though you are better than the other drivel this franchise has churned out.

Just throwing this in here for science:

Okay, back to the movie…

Sorry, wrong movie! I know we sound like people defending this and not knocking it like so many have and calling it super crap and all, but we know better. I know that Cameron Monaghan is our new, young Joker in Gotham (though I have yet to see it – have seen clips though, and he looks like buckets of crazy), and I recognise Bella Thorne as the super bitch in The Duff – she’s still a bitch here, but not quite the same type.

The movie really wasn’t too bad starting off, though I desperately wanted to give that girl some clothes, which led me to question if girls in America all really lie around in their panties doing homework and then traversing the house in their knickers – the stereotype had to start somewhere, right?

Naturally the family is super dysfunctional (like what kind of Amityville movie would it be if it weren’t like that), and there are a ton of secrets surrounding the house. Peeps, I hate to say this, but I swear I am starting to get old. Bella, our main panty prancing, bad attitude protagonist grated on me. What is up with that? I mean I know teens are moody and disrespectful and all those things, but the more I see of that the older I am getting, the more insane it is (though her mom was cuckoo-katchoo to boot and she really does love her baby sister, whom she is just trying to protect). It is madness.

Anyway peeps, not a great horror, but a particularly good entry to this super shitty franchise. I won’t make the mistake of saying at least they are done now, because I am sure that, before we know it, the Chop and I will be back with more torture!

November Blind Spot Review: City of God (2002)

“You need more than guts to be a good gangster. You need ideas.”
– Rocket

SYNOPSIS: Two boys growing up in a violent neighborhood of Rio de Janeiro take different paths: one becomes a photographer, the other a drug dealer. – via IMDB

Man, I have been meaning to get to this movie for years and years and just never have, and finally I can cross it off my list. I don’t know about Top Ten Movies of All Time material or anything (which is where I see this movie listed often), but this movie is definitely fantastic and well worth the watch. It is heavy and handled exceptionally well, and comes across as authentic, not some attempt at a sob story from a dangerous area.

First off, City of God does not pussyfoot around in terms of the violence, drug use, and life in the slums. Oh no. You get kids with guns doing drugs and killing people and it is just the way it is, and you get a look at junkies, you see robberies and plenty murder. I have no issue with it, but I think some people might find it a little hardcore. I think it told the story in a gritty, brutal manner, and didn’t sugarcoat things.

City of God has an array of characters, and they are all interesting, all bringing a new facet to the story, and I quite liked that. The story is so interesting and immersive, being told in disjointed chapters which all fit together seamlessly as they are laid out. I was mesmerised from the off. It takes a few minutes to get rolling, but once it catches it barrels right along and it is so good. It is so heavy to see the conditions that people live in, and how the violence and danger was simply accepted as a way of life.

There are some heavy scenes that come up throughout the movie that just get your blood boiling (Li’l Zé, you are a supreme dweeb). Benny is a character you cannot help but like – he is just likeable. Yes, he’s in the whole drug racket and is respected and will do what is necessary, but he is also more level-headed and fair, so the people like him more. Rocket, our main peanut, is in a sticky situation all throughout the movie as he does not want to be either a cop or a hood, and I can’t think you would have a lot of options in the slums. Li’l Zé is a freaking crackpot crazy – no two ways about it o.O

Anyway, City of God benefits from a good cast that presents to us an uncomfortable but important and engrossing story. It is gritty and brutal, authentic and heartfelt. The film is shot well and the score works hand in hand with the visuals to draw you in. You become invested in what you are seeing, and the movie truly provokes viewer engagement throughout. You are fascinated, but you don’t want to be these people. For people uhming and ahing about this because it is subtitled, get over it. The story is awesome and you will hardly be aware of those subtitles.

Review: Death Note (2017)

“Every human spends the last moments of his life in the shadow of a death god.”
– Ryuk

SYNOPSIS: Light Turner, a bright student, stumbles across a mystical notebook that has the power to kill any person whose name he writes in it. Light decides to launch a secret crusade to rid the streets of criminals. Soon, the student-turned-vigilante finds himself pursued by a famous detective known only by the alias L. – via IMDB

You know, I wondered how this was going to go down. I am sure there are going to be a ton of people that are going to hate on it and knock on it (yes, I see I am right having Googled the reception and rating). Anime is not an easy thing to bring to screen, and I must confess I have skipped a lot of the things. I don’t watch anime, though my brother in law and a very close friend of mine swear by it.

Now, while I do not and have not watched a lot of animes, Death Note is one of the few I actually did watch. Well, most of it, until it got so drawn out and boring I wanted to scratch my eyes out. It was entertaining until about halfway, three quarters through, then it just got crazy. When I saw the run-time for this, I was interested to see how exactly Wingard was going to handle the whole story and bring it to life. In short, pretty damn well actually.

Yes, I know a lot of people might want to shoot me for that, and I don’t care. I liked that this was fast and got to the core of the story without all the filler stuff that just bored me out of finishing it initially. The movie felt a bit longer than it was, not because I was bored, but because there was a hell of a lot of content crammed into a short space of time. It never felt rushed though, which is a bonus. It set up what was needed and then told the story, and it came together pretty well.

A big drawback for me was the casting of Keith Stanfield as L, he just didn’t really feel right. The other actors fit and did alright with their roles, but Stanfield just stood out because he did not seem to gel with the other actors, and his performance came across as forced, which I didn’t like. Also, I could have done with more of Ryuk. Light was definitely a strange character here, like he was never scared of Ryuk, but that also didn’t always hurt this. It all just rolled along fine, just strange.

As this was done by Wingard, it looked stylish and I enjoyed the soundtrack and score. Wingard understands style, that’s for sure, so that was one of the things nailed down really well in Death Note. All things being said, I quite enjoyed this and I really think the internet is hating on it way more than it deserves.

JB & The Chop Do: Scream 4 (2011)

JB & THE CHOP SCREAM

After taking such a long hiatus – and relieving the public of my constant shame – I want to say that I have had a shitload of fun doing this again, JB. Thanks for not giving up on me :  ) I haven’t exactly loved these Scream movies BUT I didn’t grow up on them like you did. I wonder what we can pick next… maybe something older – like ME! I remember the 90s as my young 20s when I moved out of my mom’s and went to college and had to start paying bills and shit and working 90 hours a week (for real). Those aren’t my fondest memories CRY CRY CRY. But, with that, I had to say this was probably my favorite one of the bunch… *walks slowly backwards out of the room….

scream 4 poster

SYNOPSIS: Ten years have passed, and Sidney Prescott, who has put herself back together thanks in part to her writing, is visited by the Ghostface Killer. – via IMDB

CHOP SCREAM

What made me like it the most out of the four? It came out in 2011 so it was a little more modern. It was definitely much  more gory,  #guts . Dewey seems to be back to his role as an inept #dingdong . I know the cast is principally the same but I liked the cameos. This came out right when True Blood was popular so I wonder how much they had to pay Anna Paquin and her #legs to be in this for two minutes? I also liked the fact that the killer made sense this time even though I still think the costume is not #tits . If you don’t get that reference, you can search my site for the three page explanation of how that term came into my life. Searching that word on my site will take you to probably 1000 of the 1300+ posts out there. Go find it and get back to me here. Maybe you’ll win a prize! A #booby prize!

Plus – Marley Shelton??? #??????????? any movie with her in it gets extra marks from me.

I also like Emma Roberts. I don’t think JB does but I do – I really liked her in Scream Queens.

You know what I didn’t like? This asshole’s hairdo. (Not the chick). A man’s hair should never blow in the wind! #fuckinhippies

I also really liked the publicist:

Where have I seen her before??? OH YEAH! She’s one of the leads from GLOW!

I loved that show! Bring on season two! More #spandex and #chickfights and #cleavage and #bighair and #showerscenes . #hashtag

I always try and end these runs with a nice thank you to the beloved JB, not that that happens consistently but… even though JB and I live on different continents, if it ever came down to it, and I was a zombie:

It gives It permission to end It without repercussions. It does not want It to end It in any way, but It saw this image and it made It think of It.

Always love,

It

JB SCREAM

And here we are, the final movie. Thank you all for sticking with us, reading, commenting, everything. As always, we appreciate it! It’s been a blast, and hopefully we will be back soon with something new!

I think that this is a damn fine entry to the series, especially after so many years passing in between. More solid than the last, that is for sure, and I really liked how it took the concept of Scream and modernised it to cellphones, vlogging, etc. So much has changed! I will always be a fan of the fact that the same cast has always returned for their roles, it just gives the whole experience a more cohesive and authentic feeling, which is awesome. I really like how these movies are all solid – truly, how many franchises can say that they have so many entries and that they are all well worth watching? *cough* Amityville *cough*

scream 4 don't fuck with the original

Thank goodness Cox’s hair was sorted out – Scream 3 did her no wonders whatsoever, and whoever styled her hair with that fringe should have been shot. Seriously. Her and Dewey being together is adorable, and I will not lie, that blonde woman, Hicks, who was hitting on Dewey? Really made me angry :/ Stay away or go find an available man, hooker! Even though the Chop thinks she is hot. Which is fine. But she must back off the Gale/Dewey thing!

And yes, the Chop is 100% right – I am still not sold on Emma Roberts. Even her face just looks like a spoiled brat to me, and she always comes across like that, too. Ugh. She isn’t even that great an actress (or I have yet to see her in anything where she wows me, at any rate).

Scream 4 brings on the slashing, the guts, the gore, some humour, more movie references than you can shake a stick at and all most all of our favourite characters. *cough cough* no Randy ;( The rules have been updated, too, for a more modern set, and it works for this. When this first came I just didn’t watch it, because… well… what if it didn’t end well? When I finally got to it I was pleasantly surprised, and definitely rank this over Scream 3.

scream 4 i'm gay rule

I almost died when they tried to call Rory Culkin’s Charlie Walker this generation’s Billy Loomis. Are you freaking kidding me?????? Are you?????? I mean I get the updating and all of that but… but… yeah. Still not, though I did like how he was worked with in this.

scream 4 ghostface door

Hayden Panettiere (who I am sure will always be Claire, the cheerleader, for me) initially struck me as potentially out of place in this, but fast becomes a fan favourite, she’s awesome.

scream 4 trying to do ghostface

Anyway, after all is said and done, I just want to thank Eric from the bottom of my heart for doing these movies with me! I am glad to see you liked them, even if you didn’t love them! I am so excited for any and all future projects that we will do together (and damn, those Amityville movies are racking up again). This is always fun and you rock 😀

PS: It loves Its picture, but It will not be ending It in a hurry!

JB & The Chop Do: Scream 3 (2000)

JB & THE CHOP SCREAM

Peeps! We are totally on a roll with these movies, the most awesome Chop and I! Man, I have been having a blast, and I am thrilled the Chop was game to do another one of these. So now we are on to the third part of the original trilogy. This is, in my opinion, the weakest of the four Scream films… but what did PSC think of this thing?

scream 3 poster

SYNOPSIS: While “Stab 3” is in production, somebody in a ghost mask starts to murder the new cast members. This lures Sidney out from hiding deep in the woods where she lives, and she comes to Hollywood to face the killer for the final act. – via IMDB

JB SCREAM

So let me immediately start out by saying that Courtney Cox’s hairdresser completely screwed up her hair. Gale is this hot, tenacious reporter with very few qualms. Then she’s back here, and she is all those things but that fringe. Plus her wardrobe. Okay, there was just a lot appearance-wise that was just not working for her in this. Goodness. It was like a horror movie all on its own!

This one certainly lacked the charm of the previous two. I appreciated what was being done here, though I was not a big fan of everything being “the movies” and “on set”. It was gimmicky and didn’t work for very long. Scream 3 is certainly the flimsiest of the lot – the story is absolutely ridiculous, but what saves this is the consistency – seriously, the story, the actors reprising their roles, the humour, Sidney still wearing Derek’s necklace, it all works so well in keeping this movie afloat more so than it would otherwise have worked.

Randy Meeks got a little cameo, which was cool.

Neve Campbell truly is fantastic as Sidney, and she is one of my all time favourite horror movie heroines. She just won’t make anything easy for anyone and stands her ground. She is afraid, but she is also sick and tired of all the bullshit. Much love man, much love.

scream 3 it's your turn to scream

The “romance” of the phone calls has been lost, there are calls, but more often than not, like the last, it is more about slashing and killing than anything else. Scream 3 totally delivers on the gore and all, but yeah, there was just something missing.

scream 3 bodyguard attack

Totally stoked to see Gale and Dewey back at it again – this is a romance I will always love. It is just so silly and it works.

Parker Posey irritates the ever-loving crap out of me always, and this movie was no exception. Aside from the silly story, I think she is the main culprit as to why this movie is not a little higher in my esteem, though I still enjoy it. She is grating, annoying, loud, ridiculous, and just all round grating. I don’t ever find her to be an asset or a selling point in a cast.

scream 3 i'm the killer

Anyway, Scream 3 is still fun, though definitely a decline after the other two, but miles ahead of most horror/shasher sequels. The reasoning and explanations get pretty fucking thin (har har) here, but it still entertains nonetheless, and the consistency of these movies elevates it. Much fun.

CHOP SCREAM

Scream 3! The last one! Bangs! Like I’ve said before, I’m not really familiar with these things, but I did find myself laughing a few times in this. Was this supposed to be more of a horror comedy? Or was this supposed to be a horror and the new writer through in some laughs? I know all three of these have aimed to poke fun at themselves for being a horror movie, sequel, etc but this one was kind of funny. Mostly with these two:

I’ve NEVER been a fan of Parker Posey but for some reason I liked her in this. She’s kind of…. dumb but hangs in there. When her and Bangs start screaming and running around with their arms flailing in the air, I liked it. LOL They also had some of the better lines. I liked it when Cox was tied up, off screen and she yells, “SHOOT THE FUCKER!”

I also see Jenny McCarthy’s in here. Obviously for her very good acting skills.

Plus, she really just screams purple!

The keen eye will also notice Emily Mortimer’s décolletage – look at me using fancy words!

I remember when this guy was popular as a kid – before JB was even born. Then he was popular again on that TV show which I never understood. My bad, I guess. Nice hair, bro.

So someone else has a hood and a mask and a knife and a voice altering device. He or she is going around stabbing people and throwing them through glass doors. While this one was bloodier and décolletage-ier, I thought this was pretty flimsy. Like – there’s this one scene where Campbell is running away from the ghost face guy and she opens this door on a movie set and almost falls to her death but then, when she pushes ghosty out the door he falls onto a bed that wasn’t there three seconds before.

Or, during the big climax-explain-why-hes-doing-all-of-this scene, he’s talking to her for several minutes in the killer voice but he’s not even holding the voice modulator to his mouth… because he can’t…. because he’s wearing a fucking mask! Plus, the whole reasons why this person decided to mass murder all of these people in cold blood was kind of stupid. It was kind of the cinematic rendering of this:

Meanwhile, not only were there Creed posters on the wall of the movie-set’s house, there were Creed songs played over the credits. So, speaking of asses:

Anthony Scott Stapp. Get it?? A.S.S. Get it???? HAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAAH I fucking crack myself up. I’ve already watched number 4 by now so I can say – YUM