Uncategorized

December 5th, 2017 Movie – Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie

street fighter 2

The summer after I graduated high school, I ended up renting a lot of anime movies pretty much every day. It really was a rountine for most of the summer; wake up, head to the video store to rent a couple of animes, head off to work, get home, watch said movies, go to sleep, repeat. Now this is one of the anime movies I had rented during that period and I thought it was fantastic, definitely better than the live action movie. My brothers got it on VHS and I know we watched it several times back in the day and years later, I ended up buying it on DVD. Now let’s get right into today’s movie, Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie.

The plot: On a dark, stormy night, a Japanese martial artist named Ryu is fighting Sagat, an undefeated Muay Thai champion, unaware that their fight is being observed and data is being collected on the two fighters. After a fierce battle, Ryu scars Sagat’s chest after hitting him with a Shoryuken and as an enraged Sagat charges at him, Ryu finishes the fight by hitting him with a Hadouken. A few years later, MI6 agent Cammy White attacks and kills a Justice Minister but is quickly captured by security. As they watch video of the incident, Interpol Agent Chun-Li explains that Cammy has been interrogated and has no memory of the last 3 years, leading them to believe that she had been brainwashed by Shadaloo. After showing pictures of three men (Sagat, Balrog, and Vega) who have already been recruited by Shadaloo, Chun-Li says that they are organizing a joint operation with the U.S. military in order to take down Shadaloo and it’s leader, M. Bison. Chun-Li heads to an Air Force base to speak with Captain Guile about the task force but he dismisses her, saying that he will destroy Bison on his own, angering Chun-Li. Meanwhile, Bison, Sagat, Balrog, and Vega arrive at the Shadaloo base in Thailand, Bison’s head scientist shows him their newest model of monitor cyborgs, which they use to collect fighter data. Bison asks if they have found Ryu let, as Bison wants him in his organization, but the scientist admits they haven’t, though scoffs that Ryu’s ability is really as high as their data suggests. Elsewhere, Ryu is training high in the mountains and as he trains, he thinks back to when he was first studying martial arts with his friend Ken Masters. Some time later, Ryu goes travelling to find tough martial artists to fight and ends up fighting Fei-Long in China. After beating Fei-Long, Ryu and Fei-Long are walking down the street and Fei-Long tells him that he recognizes his name now, and tells him about Sagat joining Shadaloo before the two men go their separate ways. In Seattle, Ken meets up with his girlfriend Eliza for lunch and ends up fighting T. Hawk later that evening, unaware that a monitor cyborg is observing their fight. Some time later, Ryu travels to India, where he accidentally causes a young girl to spill the milk she was taking to her mother so he gives her some money so she can buy some more milk. While there, Ryu observes a fight between a yoga master named Dahlsim and a sumo named E. Honda. A monitor cyborg is also observing the fight and Dahlsim gets the upper hand when he uses his mysticism to paralyze E. Honda but he suddenly senses Ryu’s power and gets distracted, allowing Honda to win the fight, while the monitor cyborg attempts to locate the fighter Dahlsim was talking about. After leaving the fight, Ryu sees the little girl running towards him when she is knocked down by a Shadaloo assassin, who had just killed a public speaker speaking out against Shadaloo. When security wounds the assassin, other Shadaloo agents kill the assassin and fire into the crowd to escape, causing Ryu to attack them and knock several of them out. Ryu then goes to check on the girl, who is ok and was bringing him his change but he tells her to keep it. After she is taken away in an ambulance, Honda approaches Ryu and offers him half of the money he won in his fight, saying that he would have lost if Ryu hadn’t of been there. Back at the Shadaloo base, Bison is shown video of Ken’s fight and the similarities that his fighting style has with Ryu’s. After learning that Ken and Ryu studied martial arts at the same school, he decides to go after Ken and convert him to his cause. Back in the U.S., Chun-Li again attempts to get Guile to join her, telling her that she wants Bison dead because he killed her father but she chooses to put her duty first and Guile finally agrees to help. The two travel to see Dee Jay, a fighter that Guile had heard about, and warn him about Shadaloo being after him, with Chun-Li kicking the head off of a monitor cyborg that was watching him, but they are unaware that a second cyborg was watching them from the roof of the club. Bison sees the video and decides to send Vega after Chun-Li, then calls Balrog in Las Vegas, who is promoting Bison’s interests there before watching a fight between the Russian wrestler Zangief and Blanca, the Brazilian man/beast. Vega attacks Chun-Li in her apartment and severely injures her with his blades but Chun-Li manages to beat him, kicking him through the wall of her apartment where he falls to his death. Guile arrives at the apartment and takes the injured Chun-Li to the hospital, then calls into Interpol to explain what happened. Interpol tells him of the monitor cyborg following Ken and Guile says that once he knows that Chun-Li is stable, he will head to Seattle to check on Ken. In Seattle, Ken is driving with Eliza and asks her to marry him and she tells him she will think about it. After dropping her off at her house, Ken leaves but he is soon confronted by Bison, who easily captures Ken and flies off, just as Guile arrives and finds Ken’s car. Returning to Interpol, Guile learns that they have found Ryu’s location and though there are monitor cyborgs are in the area, they don’t believe they have located him due to his constant movements so Guile heads out to find Ryu. Meanwhile, Bison begins subjecting Ken to his mind control process when he learns that Guile is heading to the Thai/Laos border and realizes that Guile has located Ryu. Bison decides to take Ken with him so that Ken and Ryu can have the battle they both want and Sagat pleads with Bison to let him face Ryu again but Bison refuses, telling Sagat that he needs to go to New York to deal with Cammy and Vega. After visiting Chun-Li, who is in a coma, Guile heads to see Ryu only to realize that Bison had followed him there. When Bison’s plane lands, Ryu is shocked to see Ken there with Bison and when he goes to confront him, Ken attacks him. Honda, who had been staying with Ryu, attempts to attack Bison but Bison dodges it and Honda ends up fighting with Balrog, and the two end up falling off the mountain. Meanwhile, Bison confronts Guile, who tries to attack him but is unable to land a single blow on Bison and Bison uses his psycho power to send Guile flying off the mountain. Ken and Ryu continue to fight, with Ken beating Ryu as he refuses to fight the brainwashed Ken and tries to free him from Bison’s control. As the fight progresses, Ken starts having flashbacks to his training and he eventually breaks free from Bison’s control, only for Bison to appear and toss Ken aside. Ryu tries to go help Ken but Bison stops him and the two begin fighting. Ken regains consciousness and finds his legs won’t support his weight. Crawling up the hill, he sees Bison’s plane and remembers what happened, then sees Bison and Ryu fighting and calls out to them but stumbles back down the hill. Ken channels his chi to heal his legs, then heads out to help Ryu fight Bison. The two work together and manage to beat Bison, using a double Hadouken to send Bison flying into his plane, causing it to explode while Honda arrives back up the mountain, carrying Balrog and Guile with him. At the same time, the U.S. and Interpol forces attack Shadaloo’s main base, destroying it. Guile returns to New York, where he receives a call from the hospital. Getting there, he finds Chun-Li covered with a sheet and, thinking that she is dead, tells her that he got their revenge but Chun-Li reveals that she was playing a trick on him and embraces him. Meanwhile, Ryu and Ken are talking to each other, saying that they have to settle their score the next time they see each other. Eliza picks Ken up and they offer Ryu a lift but he chooses to walk and heads off down the highway. As he is walking, a semi comes barreling towards him and when he turns to look, he sees Bison driving it so he leaps to attack him, unaware that a monitor cyborg is watching him.

This is a much better adaptation of the video game and definitely a fun movie to watch. The voice acting was pretty good and the dubbing matched up the lip movements pretty well, though some of the dialogue just sounded weird. The story was good, bringing up all of the various characters introduced in Street Fighter II, as well as the 4 new characters  and showcasing them much like they are in the depicted in the video game. I also liked the brief appearance of Akuma in India, as he was a hidden character in the some of the later versions of Street Fighter II. The animation was very good and some of the back ground scenery, such as the mountains, were incredibly realistic looking. Definitely a better movie rendition of the video game and I think something like this should be how most video game movies should be done.

Rating: 4 1/2 out of 5

Advertisements
Standard
adventure, drama, horror, movie, movie review, Uncategorized

November 3rd, 2017 Movie – Spring Break Shark Attack

spring break shark attack

Sometimes, I wonder why it took so long for an idea to be turned into a movie. I mean, when you think of Spring Break, the beach is pretty much the first thing that comes to mind for the majority of people. So why not throw in a couple of shark with the mixture of drunken college coeds. That idea practically screams out to be a Syfy original movie. There is only one problem with that idea. As you can see from the poster above, Syfy had nothing to do with this movie, as it was a CBS production. I remember watching this when it debuted on TV and thinking it was kind of lame but let’s see if my opinion changes as I watch today’s movie, Spring Break Shark Attack.

The plot: 4 Women are out in a raft off the coast of Seagull Beach in Florida when one of them, who was hanging on to the side of the raft, is attacked by a shark and as she is thrashing about, she ends up causing the raft to flip over, spilling the other women into the water to be attacked as well. Danielle Harrison is talking with her friends Karen and Alicia, who invite her out to the beach house they are staying at in Seagull Beach. Danielle asks her parents about going but her over-protective father refuses to let her go, citing that the boys down there “are only after one thing” while her mother reminds her about her volunteering for Habitat for Humanity in Colorado. The next day, Danielle’s parents say goodbye as Karen leaves, supposedly for Colorado, but she secretly changes her ticket and heads down to Florida, surprising her friends when she arrives. After getting changed into bikinis, the three girls head out onto the beach and observe some of the activities that are going on before Danielle leaves to go visit her brother Charlie, who is in graduate school down there. Alicia and Karen go looking for Alicia’s boyfriend Max, as Alicia had heard rumors that he was cheating on her, while elsewhere on the beach, Max and his friend JT are using Max’s video camera to try and get girls to flash them. At a small boat shop, Joel Gatley, owner of a club in nearby East Point, is talking with shop owner Mary Jones, who is happy about the business the new reef is bringing Seagull Beach and questions Joel’s current attitude, as he was a vocal critic of the reef and felt it would take business away from his club. Meanwhile, Charlie and his professor are out on the school’s research boat and Charlie is complaining about the reef causing ecological problems with the fish population, including the tiger shark population, but his professor want to hurry back to enjoy spring break, with neither of them noticing the large tiger shark that was circling the boat. Danielle arrives on the dock looking for Charlie and meets Shane Jones, Mary’s son, and he tells her that Charlie went out on the school boat and after talking for a while, he tells her that he will tell Charlie she was looking for her when he gets back. Danielle rejoins her friends and they eventually see Max, who introduces them to JT. JT takes an immediate liking to Danielle and starts flirting with her, convincing her to head out into the water with him but Max is upset, thinking he won’t be able to fool around if Alicia is here. Later that night, Danielle and the others are at a club, with JT trying to get close to her, and as he goes to get some beers, Shane approaches Danielle and after the talk for a bit, she convinces him to go dancing with her. Meanwhile, JT runs into a girl he met last year and asks how she is doing but she just stares at him in shock before quickly leaving with her friend while Max steps waway from dancing with Alicia to ask another girl to meet up later. JT rejoins Danielle as she is dancing with Shane and she introduces him to Shane but before they can talk, Alicia and Karen come up asking if they have seen Max and JT says he will look for him while Alicia and Karen drag Danielle away to dance with them. Shane ends up leaving the club and heading to the bookstore next door and Danielle shows up a few minutes later and the two keep talking and end up getting closer. The next day, Danielle goes to visit Charlie and Charlie is shocked to see her there and tells her about his project while warning her to stay out of the water. Later, the girls plan on going to a party and Karen invites a few people over for a pre-party cocktail but it ends up turning into a an impromptu house party. When JT shows up and puts down Max’s video camera to dance with Danielle, Alicia grabs it and watches the footage, getting angry when she sees what Max had been doing. Danielle leaves the party to get some air, heading to a nearby restaurant to get some soda and finds Shane working there. As the two start talking, JT shows up to interrupt them and buys Danielle a soda but when Shane hands him the cup, JT slips a roofie into Danielle’s drink while she is busy writing directions to the house so Shane can come later. As the party continues, Danielle starts feeling the effects of the drug and stumbles out to the beach, where Shane finds her and carries her back inside. As Alicia and Karen help him take Danielle upstairs and place her in a bed, Danielle tells Shane she is starting to have feelings for him before she passes out. After Shane leaves to get her some water, Danielle wakes up briefly and, in her drugged state, she ends up calling her dad and telling him she is in Florida before passing out again. Meanwhile, JT slips upstairs and attempts to molest the unconscious Danielle but quickly moves away when Shane comes upstairs with some water and sits down to keep an eye on her. The next morning, Danielle comes downstairs and after talking with her friends about what happened, Karen and Alicia think Danielle might have been roofied but Danielle says she doesn’t think anything happened but does remember calling her father. Meanwhile, JT goes to rent one of Shane’s boats and though Shane doesn’t want too, Mary tells him to take them out on the boat. As Danielle, Karen, Alicia, and JT go to board the boat, Danielle’s father arrives to try and take Danielle back home with him but she refuses to go with him and gets on the boat. As they head out on the ocean, JT drags Danielle into the water with him, with Karen and Alicia jumping in after them but as they are swimming, Shane notices blood coming out from underneath the boat and yells at them to get back on the boat. JT, Karen, and Alicia quickly get on but Danielle had floated further away and as she starts to swim towards them, they see a shark approaching her. Shane throws her a life preserver and tells her to stay still as the sharks start circling her and after they start swimming away, he yells at her to swim for the boat and she makes it to the boat, where Shane and JT pull her on board. When the sharks start attacking the boat, it damages the engine and Shane has to jury rig it to get it started but says they won’t be able to make it to the dock so he heads to a nearby island instead. As they unload some of their gear from the boat so they can make camp for the night, Danielle finds a pill packet with one pill missing mixed in with the towels. Later that night, Danielle asks JT about the night before, then goes to Shane and shows him the packet, saying she doesn’t think he was the one to use it. Shane gets pissed and punches JT and accuses him of trying to drug Danielle and when JT says Shane was the one to get the sodas, Shane says he handed him to JT and Danielle says that he wouldn’t have known which cup was hers. Shane walks away disgusted and Danielle follows after him, apologizing for doubting him. The next day, Shane is finishing repairing the boat so they can come back and tells Danielle that someone had been using the boat to chum the waters and left the bait well open, which is what caused the blood to appear in the water. Meanwhile, Alicia is walking along the island when she sees Max’s body and screams, bringing the others to see what happened. The group return to dock and Danielle goes to see Charlie and tell him what happened, while Shane goes to tell his mom and Karen and Alicia go to tell the police about Max’s body but JT walks out of the station and goes to get drunk. Mary, hearing what happened to Shane, finds Gately on the beach and confronts him about what he had been doing but Gately denies any wrongdoing. When people spot a swarm of tiger sharks heading towards the beach, Danielle, Shane, and Charlie grab all of the chum on the dock and load it onto the university boat and use it to lure the sharks away, but not before JT is killed by the sharks. After luring the sharks away, Shane and Charlie go to set the bait loose but the sharks grab the cage and drag it underwater, ripping the cable harness and engines free from the boat. As Charlie radios for help, the sharks start attacking the boat and Shane is injured when a spear gun accidentally goes off and shoots him in the shoulder. Danielle tells Charlie to use his project to chase off the sharks but one of the pods malfunctions so Danielle goes into the water to repair it and the sharks swim back out into the ocean depths. As a police boat picks them up, Mary confronts Gately again and tells him he got his wish and that the beach is being closed and Gately says that he was going bankrupt and only wanted to scare people, not wanting people to be killed. The boat returns to dock and Danielle reconciles with her father then approaches Shane, who is being tended to by paramedics, and the two kiss before they go walking along the beach.

Yeh, this was a bit of a let down of a movie, even now. The acting was ok, with Shannon Lucio (Danielle), Riley Smith (Shane), and Justin Baldoni (JT) doing good jobs in their roles. The story was interesting but I think they could have done more with the shark attack aspect of the movie, as they didn’t really do much with the sharks themselves until the last 30 minutes of the movie, outside of the brief attacks here and there. Instead, the movie focused more on the sleazy aspects of spring break, particularly JT’s trying to drug and rape Danielle, and implying he did the same thing to the girl he met the year before. The special effects with the sharks were pretty average and honestly didn’t really instill much of the shock effect in me. This was just an average movie that you might watch if you are bored and there is nothing better on TV.

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5

Standard
Uncategorized

August 25th, 2017 Movie – She Gods Of Shark Reef

the she beastI have an important announcement to make. CANNONBALL! In all seriousness, I do have a rather annoying issue to be discussed here. So the internet is out at my house due to the cable accidentally being cut. Until it is fixed, my postings are probably going to be a little spotty at times. What I will probably do is write up the review as a word document, then use a flash drive so I can upload it onto the blog while I am on a break at work. This will work, to a degree, during the work week but the weekend movies will have to all be poster on Monday. Here is hoping that this issue doesn’t take too long to get fixed.

 

So it is Friday and what better way for me to end the work week than to watch a Roger Corman movie. Now this is an older movie of his, as in they thanked the “Territory” of Hawaii, as it was not yet a state when this movie was filmed there. Now I remember seeing this movie years ago during some late night TV viewings but honestly don’t remember a single thing about it. The funny thing about it is that I have this movie in two different collections; a Roger Corman set that I bought as well as in the Sci-Fi Classics box set. So let’s see what I am getting into with today’s movie, She Gods Of Shark Reef.

 

The plot: Lee Johnston and his partner swim underneath a dock, then climb up and kill a guard before they sneak into a warehouse and open a crate containing some guns. When a second guard makes his rounds and finds the dead guard, Lee’s partner jumps back into the water and swims away. The guard sees this and starts to raise an alarm but Lee attacks and kills him, then uses the cover of darkness to swim to the far side of the island, where his brother Chris has a boat. Lee’s plan was to stow away on the boat and when they reached a nearby island, he would disembark, as he had friends there that would help hide him. However, the ship was stuck in a hurricane and ends up getting caught on a reef. Chris and Lee, the only survivors of the ship, are rescued by some female pearl divers and brought to their island, where the village elder, Queen Pua, approaches the beach. Pua asks what happened and Chris explains that their radio was damaged during the storm and they tried to make it to the island but got caught on the reef. Pua doesn’t want the men on the island, as their village is a female only village, and Chris says he doesn’t want to stay longer than he has too. When Chris asks if any ships come to the island so they can be taken back to port, Pua tells them a company ship will be there in 10 days, then takes them to a guest hut on the island. Once there, she gives them some dry clothes to wear, saying that her girls will salvage what they can from their ship, and asks their names so she can put it in her report. Chris gives them their names and then asks what company she is talking about and Pua explains that they are pearl divers. As Pua goes out and uses a semaphore flag to send out a message about the two men, Chris and Lee begin to argue about staying on the island, as Lee is worried that if he stays there too long, every police station on the islands will be looking for him. Chris and Lee use a raft to head out to the wrecked boat and salvage what they can, then head back to the village. When they get there, Pua approaches them and asks how they fared. After telling her their bad luck, Lee asks about food on the island and Pua tells them where to go, saying the girls will take care of them. She them points out the hut where they store the pearls they collect until the company ship arrives and tells them that area is off limits to them. Lee, noticing one of the girls, Mahia, seems attracted to Chris, convinces him to talk to her, saying that she might be able to help them get off the island. Chris talks to Mahia and invites her to eat with him and Lee and she agrees, though Pua does not seem happy about it. After lunch, several of the girls get up to do various hula dances and Mahia convince Chris to try. As he is dancing with Mahia, she puts her lei around his neck  but as he dances, his hand gets caught in the lei and it breaks, causing all of the women to gasp and stop what they are doing. Chris asks what is wrong and Pua tells him it is taboo as she quickly pulls Mahia away from Chris and all of the girls leave. The next day, Chris goes looking around the island and sees Mahia swimming in a nearby cove and goes to swim with her. When they come back to shore, Chris asks her about what the broken lei means and Mahia explains that the shark gods are angry because Mahia rescued them. Chris tries to tell her that it isn’t true and kisses her and Mahia returns the kiss. However, Pua had seen them together and after Mahia leaves him, Pua speaks with Chris and tells him to leave Mahia alone. Meanwhile, Lee had found an outrigger that is not too damaged and Chris says that if they can replace the mast, it should be ok to use. That afternoon, Pua and the other women are sitting around a fire, with Pua asking for a sign from the gods, and based on the smoke and flame of the fire, she says that they have to perform a purification ceremony. Mahia is bound and taken out on a boat and then thrown into the water to be fed to the sharks but Chris goes out an a long board and rescues Mahia. Chris brings her back to shore and starts to carry her to the guest hut. Pua and the others follow after him and beg him to leave her to them but Chris refuses to let them kill her. Later, Chris and Lee go to work on fixing the boat and Pua follows them, to see where they are going, then heads to the hut to get Mahia. Pua tries to tell her that Chris and Lee are bad, as the police are coming for them but Mahia doesn’t believe her about Chris and calls out for him. Chris and Lee hear her and go to help, taking both women back to the hut, where Lee ties up Pua. Realizing they have to leave now, Chris asks Mahia if there is a map to show the breaks in the reef and she says it is in the hut with the pearls. Lee tells Chris and Mahia to get some supplies and take Pua to the boat, as they have to take her with them so she doesn’t raise the alarm, while he gets the map. Lee grabs the map, then gets greedy and tries to take the pearls as well, but he is seen and the rest of the villagers chase after him. Lee gets on the boat and they start to sail away and Pua says that the villagers were saying Lee took the pearls but he denies it. Deciding to wait on the reef until dark before they get away, Lee says he wants to check the other side of the reef, but secretly swims back to the island and steals the pearls. Meanwhile, Mahia asks Chris why they are running from the police and Chris tells her that Lee had got into some trouble and he was trying to help him escape. Meanwhile, Pua manages to free herself and heads back to the island, calling for the girls to warn the others. When Lee gets back to the reef and finds Pua is gone, he tells Chris that they have to leave now but Chris says it is too risky. Seeing the bag in Lee’s hand, Chris grabs it and realizes Lee went back to steal the pearls. When Mahia asks about the guard, Lee admits to killing her then attacks Chris when he tries to stop him from leaving. The two begin fighting on the reef, eventually spilling into the water, and Lee manages to knock Chris unconscious and then steals the boat. Mahia helps Chris and they watch Lee as he gets tangled in the ropes for the mast and falls into the water. When a shark approaches, Chris dives in to try and help him, with Mahia following after but they are unable to save him and he is killed by the shark, while the bag of pearls falls out of the boat, spilling onto the ocean floor. Pua and the other women reach the reef and Pua calls out for Mahia but Mahia chooses to stay with Chris and they sail off together.

 

This wasn’t too bad of a movie and if it had a longer run time so they could flesh out some parts, it would have been a lot better. The acting was pretty good, with Bill Cord (Chris), Don Durant (Lee) and Jeanne Gerson (Pua) all doing good jobs in their roles. The story was a pretty straight forward for the most part but was a little confusing in the beginning as they didn’t really explain what was going on until several minutes after Chris and Lee were rescued. The pacing of the movie did feel a bit off at times while some of the scenes with the sharks didn’t blend well with the scenes of the people, as you could tell they were shot on different types of film. A short movie that can be worth a watch.

 

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5

Standard
adventure, horror, movie, movie review, Uncategorized

July 1st, 2017 Movie – Sasquatch

sasquatch

Wow. Three years. Three years since a friend of mine gave me the idea of writing a blog as I start going through all my movies. To be honest, I am surprised that I am still keeping with this but I seem to be doing a decent job with it and people are reading it, which is a plus. I plan on making a change or two to things on here and would appreciate any feedback on what you think I could do to make things more enjoyable.

Anyways, today I find myself dealing with a summer cold, which is not what I want to deal with over a holiday weekend. Well, whenever I was sick as a kid, that was basically an excuse to stay in bed and watch cheesy movies on TV and that’s pretty much what I plan on doing today. Now today’s movie is a Sasquatch movie, which is a type of movie I always enjoy watching, and it has honestly been too long since I have watched one. I guess I need to buy some more in the future but for right now, I’m going to lay down and watch today’s movie, Sasquatch.

The plot: Tara Knowles is flying in a Bio-Comp Industries company plane over the Pacific Northwest when something happens and the plane ends up crashing. As Tara uses a video camera to document what happened, the wreckage begins shaking and the surviving passengers hear a roaring coming from outside the plane. Some time later, Tara is seen running through the snow covered mountain, firing a flare gun so she can see, as something chases after her and when she tries to use the flare gun to defend herself, she ends up being killed. Bio-Comp CEO Harlan Knowles is hit hard by the news of the rescue search being called off, both by the loss of his daughter as well as the loss of the biotech project that was being transported on the plane. Harlan decides to fund and head up his own team to go searching for the wreck and hires local guide Clayton Tyne, wilderness expert and author Winston Burg, forensic investigator Nikki Adams, Marla Lawson (an insurance underwriter for Browning and Burroughs), and Plazz (a tech expert from Bio-Comp). As they make their way up the mountain, Plazz continually talks about cryptozoology and legendary creatures that supposedly live in the area, much to the annoyance of Winston. During their second day in the woods, they hear a strange knocking sound in the woods and when Clayton goes to see what is causing it, he finds an antler that was used for wood knocking, as well as some foul smelling hair snagged on a tree, but chooses not to say anything. When they make camp for the night, something grabs Marla and drags her out of her tent and through the woods but Clayton, Winston, and Harlan chase after her and find her after Winston starts shooting into the woods. Later, as Clayton is tending to Marla’s injuries and they all wondered what happened, they hear a roaring in the woods. The next morning, they find a crippled bear roaring in pain and Winston believes he had shot it the night before but after Clayton puts it out of it’s misery, he discovers that it’s neck is broken and sees a large, blood covered rock that is too heavy for him to lift. As the group keeps going, they argue over which direction they should go when Winston finds some footprints leading to a cave with some cave paintings drawn on the walls. Nikki determines that the paintings are only a couple of months old and Winston finds a shell that Tara wore around her neck, indicating she was in the area so they decide to search the area in the morning but find no sign of anyone. That night, Harlan keeps watch as Marla takes a bath in a hot spring and she asks him about the Huxley Project, saying she had quit her job and was offered money by his competitors for it but Harlan decides to match their offer for her not to say anything about it. The next day, they continue searching for the plane and reach the spot where it should be but find no sign of it. Clayton finds a piece of the fuselage in a tree and sees scratches along the trees where the plane had been moved. They eventually find the plane and Harlan goes inside but doesn’t see any signs of survivors except for a skeletal limb. As they realize that there are no sign of survivors, Harlan says they need to find a metal box, which Winston finds outside the wreckage. Harlan has Plazz check the machine and Clayton gets upset as he believes Harlan is more concerned with the machine than the survivors, including his daughter. When Clayton goes to leave, Harlan convinces him to stay and begins to explain what the machine does. Using some of Marla’s hair as an example, he tells them that the Huxley Project is able to examine and test DNA in a matter of minutes, which would be revolutionary for medical and law enforcement purposes. Plazz then notices that the device was used shortly after the crash and the resulting sample came from an unknown animal, which Plazz says is impossible as the data for every animal known to man is listed in it’s databanks. That night, as they try to figure out how the plane wound up moved to it’s present location, Clayton and Plazz both give voice to the possibility that Sasquatch might be real. When they hear a roaring in the woods, Winston begins firing blindly into the woods, almost hitting members of the group. After Clayton and Harlan disarm him, Harlan fires Winston and says that Clayton is leading the group now and Winston says he will sue Harlan for defamation of character if he tells anyone what happened. Finding a video camera in the wreckage, Plazz manages to get it working so they can see what happened and watch the events that Tara had filmed. Meanwhile, Winston is getting drunk by the fire when he notices some blood dripping down onto his hand and when he looks up, something in the trees grabs him. Clayton goes looking for Winston and finds his body, as well as the bodies of the people from the plane. He goes back to tell the others just as Nikki realizes the cave drawings depict the plane crashing and killing one of the creatures and theorizes that they killed the survivors for revenge. Harlan goes to see the bodies himself and then chooses to bury them before they get ready to leave and head down the mountain. As they sleep in the plane, planning to head down in the morning, Marla grabs the Huxley Project and decides to head down without the others, intending to sell it to Harlan’s competitors, but she ends up being attacked and killed by the Sasquatch. When Harlan and the others wake up, they realize that Marla and the machine are gone and grab what gear they can find and go looking for her. The eventually find her body and Harlan grabs the machine and they continue down the mountain but the Sasquatch follows after them. When the reach a steep drop, Clayton says the Sasquatch is following them in order to get the machine, due to it being able to provide proof they really exist, but Harlan refuses to give up the machine and chooses to make it down the mountain on his own. Harlan makes his way down the mountain but is soon attacked by the Sasquatch, which knocks him out and drags him away. When Harlan regains consciousness, he sees the device nearby as well as the body of the Sasquatch that the plane had hit. When he sees the Sasquatch that attacked him watching him, he aims his revolver at it but then shoots the device instead and the Sasquatch leaves without killing him. Harlan and the others make it safely down the mountain and Plazz tells the authorities they were attacked by a Sasquatch but when the others refuse to confirm his story, Plazz ends up taken to a psychiatric hospital for observation as the authorities fear he is delusional.

Well, this had an interesting story idea but it kind of flopped on the delivery. The acting was decent, with Russell Ferrier (Clayton) and Andrea Roth (Marla) doing good jobs in their roles but Lance Henriksen just seemed uninspired and flat as Harlan. The story was actually pretty interesting, with the concept of the machine that could prove the existence of Sasquatch being a nice twist from the typical “rescue party searching for people encounter Sasquatch” theme. For me, the thing that honestly killed this movie was the camera editing. There were several times where they would pan around the characters, which seemed to do nothing more than kill time in the movie. They also would bounce back and forth between different conversations at different time periods which made things confusing. I’m not talking about Harlan’s flashbacks of his daughter but conversations that obviously happened minutes to an hour apart and yet they were going back and forth between them like it was just occurring. I will say that the whole thermal vision to indicate how the Sasquatch saw the group was an interesting idea but the actual Sasquatch honestly looked kinda stupid, looking like a cross between Tarman from Return Of The Living Dead and a drowned cat. I know Sasquatch movies can be somewhat hit or miss but this one is definitely a miss.

Rating: 2 out of 5

Standard
comedy, horror, movie, movie review, sci-fi, Uncategorized

June 28th, 2017 Movie – Sand Sharks

sand sharks

This is a fun movie for me to watch today for several reasons. On the one note, this movie stars Corin Nemec, which means we get to play “Parker Lewis Can’t Lose, Or Can He?” But another reason is because this type of movies is one of the reasons why the letter S is my second favorite letter for movie titles. Ever since I first saw Jaws, I have always loved shark themed movies and believe me, if you did not know this before, you will soon see proof of this in a few weeks. Anyways, I first heard of this movie on a B-movie blog and thought the idea sounded pretty neat, so I bought it as soon as it came out on DVD. Let’s see if that was a good purchase as I watch today’s movie, Sand Sharks.

The plot: Two guys are riding dirt bikes along the beach but when one of the guy’s bike’s stalls out, he is attacked by something in the sand. His friend turns back to go looking for him when he sees a fin moving through the sand and he quickly gets back on his bike and tries to escape but he ends up crashing down a sand dune and as he tries to crawl away, the sand shark grabs him and drags him through the sand towards the ocean. The next day, Jimmy Green heads to city hall and, after a brief run in with Sheriff John Stone, he goes in to see Mayor Greenburg, who happens to be his father, and he proposes an idea to hold an annual week-long festival called the Sandman Festival as a mean to help the town with it’s financial troubles. Meanwhile, John and his sister Brenda, who is also his deputy, are investigating the deaths of the two dirt bikers and argue about what could have happened. Brenda believes the wounds look like a shark bite and tries contacting Dr. Powers at the Pacific Marine Institute, who had helped them with a shark attack before, but he is not there so his daughter, Dr. Sandy Powers, offers to come take a look. Meanwhile, Jimmy meets with his assistants Willie and Erin, as well as Amanda, the representative for his investors, and takes them out to see the beach where the party will be held. As they are walking along the beach, they encounter John and Brenda, who used to date Jimmy, and when John learns that Jimmy is planning another party, he gets upset and says that 15 people died the last time he threw a party on the island. Suddenly a man that was riding on a boogie board along the water’s edge is killed by a sand shark and when his girlfriend yells and gets John and Brenda to help her, she is killed as well, causing John and Brenda to head back to the parking lot. Later that day, a town meeting is held to discuss what to do about the problem and the locals are upset about the beaches being closed, as they can’t afford to have another bad season. One of the locals, Angus McSorely, tells the crowd that he has seen the sand sharks and will kill them for $10,000, but the mayor dismisses him as being crazy. As John tells the people the meeting is over, Sandy, who had shown up during the meeting, introduces herself and after examining the recovered body parts, says that the wounds look like a shark attack but she can’t say for certain. That night, two men that are hunting the sharks are killed and only their hands are left, which Brenda and Sandy examine the next day. Sandy manages to find a tooth and when she shows it to John, says that not only does it appear to have come from a baby shark, though it is already bigger than any shark’s tooth she has ever seen, but it looks like the tooth from a prehistoric shark that her father had found. Meanwhile, Jimmy is upset that he can’t starting setting up his party on the beach and calls Sparky, his pyrotechnic’s man, and has him bring a dead shark that was used in a B-film to try and say that the killer shark was captured but Sandy is able to disprove their claims. That night, a sand shark chews through a power cord, blacking out part of the island and Brenda, Willie, Amanda head to Jimmy’s room, believing he had something to do with it. Brenda handcuffs Jimmy and takes him to the beach, where John has Sparky and his crew in custody. Meanwhile, Sandy is doing some tests on the beach when she sees a sand shark fin circling her. When the mayor shows up and questions what is going on, they notice Sandy and John heads towards her but she tells him to stop. They all see the fin starting to move towards John and Sandy pulls out her gun and fires into the sand next to the shark, causing it to change direction. Seeing this, Mayor Greenburg tells Jimmy that the party is cancelled until the sand shark is killed, as he has to ensure the safety of the citizens, but the sand shark kills him. When they see the sand shark heading down the beach, they realize it is heading towards Sparky, who had gone to fix the power, and Brenda and Jimmy try yelling out and warning him but the shark attacks him just as he connects the power, causing an explosion that kills the shark but also blacks out the island. The next day, Jimmy is getting things set up for the party and Brenda shows up to offer her condolences about his father. Meanwhile, Sandy is examining the body of the sand shark and tells John that it is just a newborn pup, which means the mother is still out there and probably looking for it. They go talk to Jimmy and try to get him to cancel the party but he says that he can’t, as thousands of kids are already on the beach, and since they have no proof that there is another shark, he won’t stop it but agrees to let them keep watch. As Jimmy is excited at seeing the party started, he is approached by Amanda, who begins kissing him but they are seen by Brenda, who gets upset and leaves. As Jimmy starts arguing with Amanda, another sand shark kills her and Jimmy doesn’t say anything to Willie and Erin when they show up until Erin sees Amanda’s head. Willie wants to tell the cops and cancel the party but Erin hits him over the head and tells Jimmy she will deal with him while he keeps the party going, but after Jimmy leaves, a second sand shark appears and Erin throws Willie’s body towards it as she hides in Jimmy’s trailer. The party continues on the beach but all of the vibrations attract the sand sharks, which begin attacking the crowd. John works on getting everyone off the beach, then goes to help Sandy, who is spreading synthetic chum spray to lure the sharks away from the crowd. Meanwhile, Brenda tries to get a drunken Jimmy off of the beach but ends up getting bit in half. Jimmy drags her up to her car, apologizing and saying he loves her but she tells him she hates him before dying. When John tries contacting Brenda, Jimmy answers and tells John that Brenda is dead and when he admits that he knew about the second shark, John says he plans on arresting Jimmy for what happened. Jimmy takes Brenda’s police car to try and leave but when John radios and says he needs Jimmy’s help, Jimmy tells John that the docks are crowded with people and that the ferry won’t get there until the next day. John tells Jimmy to get the people off the dock and Jimmy attempts to do so but is unable to get the people to leave until Angus shows up and helps him. Angus and Jimmy head to the police station and find John and Sandy there and Angus explains that he has a plan to kill the sand sharks. He takes them to a pit he excavated and explains that he knows how to kill the sharks but he needs something that burns at 2000 degrees. Jimmy says that Sparky has something that will do the trick and they decide to go with Angus’ plan, using Jimmy’s speakers to lure the sharks towards them. The plan appears to work but when the speakers stop playing, Jimmy goes out to check on them only to find that the wires are severed. With no other choice, and hoping to atone for his part in the tragedy, Jimmy begins loudly singing as he heads to the pit, then drops to the ground and makes sand angels, sacrificing himself in order to lure the sharks to the kill zone. Angus uses the napalm and a homemade flamethrower to melt the sand into glass, killing the sand sharks. As John, Sandy, and Angus start to celebrate, they see a giant fin moving on the cliff above just as the mother shark attacks and kills Angus. John and Sandy head towards Angus’ bunker but the shark bursts through the bunker floor and Sandy throws the napalm tank into the shark’s mouth as she and John escape out the window before the shark bites through the tank and explodes. Later that night, Erin leaves Jimmy’s trailer and answers a call from someone wanting to hire Jimmy to throw a beach party, but as she talks to the man, a sand shark leaps out of the sand to attack her.

NOOOOOO!!!!. Parker Lewis lost this time. Oh well, at 5-2-1, he still has a winning record. This is still a really fun movie to watch. The acting was a mixture of good (such as Corin Nemec (Jimmy)),  over-the-top (like Brooke Hogan (Sandy) and Robert Pike Daniel (Angus)), and too stiff (like Eric Scott Woods (John)) which was a fun blend of styles. The story was interesting and honestly I thought it was funny how many references to Jaws there were in this movie, such as the meeting with the town about closing the beaches (and the mayor saying only for one day despite John’s protests), Angus parodying Quint’s speech at the meeting, and even Sandy’s last line at the shark with the tank was a parody of Brody’s line before he kills the shark. On another note, I personally think that Brooke Hogan was the second worst casting for a scientist since Denise Richards played Dr. Christmas Jones in The World Is Not Enough but unlike that movie, this movie was not intended to be taken as seriously. The special effects were pretty good, though for the most part it just involved a fin moving through the sand. There were a few times that the actors would react too early before the shark would attack but I have seen far worse problems in B-Movies. Definitely a fun movie to watch and good for some laughs.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Standard
horror, movie, movie review, Uncategorized

May 26th, 2017 Movie – The Ring (2002)

the ring

So here we are. This is the movie that started the trend of remaking Japanese horror movies so we have it to thank for The Grudge, Pulse, and Dark Water. Now when this came out in theaters, I honestly had no real intention to go see it. However, after hearing about how successful it ended up being, I decided to rent it when it became available on DVD. So let’s see if the hype stands up with today’s movie, The Ring (2002).

The plot: Katie and Becca are trying to watch TV but are bored because nothing good is on. Turning the TV off, Becca asks Katie if she heard the rumor of the cursed videotape, saying that when you watch it, you receive a phone call saying that you will die in 7 days. Katie asks Becca who told her that and admits that she had watched the tape with her boyfriend and two other friends last week. When the phone rings, Katie freaks out but it is only her mom so she talks with her while Katie heads back to her room. After hanging up the phone, Katie is frightened by the downstairs TV turning on by itself and when she unplugs it, she notices something moving behind her. After some other unexplained things occur, she heads back upstairs to her room to see the TV showing a scene from the video and she is killed by an unseen force. A few days later, Rachel, Katie’s aunt, is picking up her son Aiden and Aiden’s teacher talks to her about Aiden’s behavior, showing Rachel pictures he has drawn of a girl being buried and when Rachel says he is just reacting to Katie’s death, the teacher explains that he had started drawing them a week ago. At the memorial service for Katie, Rachel comforts her sister Ruth, who says she tried to figure out what could have happened to Katie and asks Rachel for her help. While outside smoking, Rachel learns about the tape and that Josh also died the same night that Rachel did. After picking up some pictures that Katie had taken to be developed, Rachel notices that a picture of the four kids has their faces all blurred. Learning that the other two kids died on the same day and the exact same time as Katie and Josh, Rachel heads up to the cabin to investigate. As she goes to rent the same cabin the kids did, Rachel notices an unmarked video tape in the video library and grabs it. When she gets to the cabin, she watches the tape, which shows some disturbing and surreal images, and when she ejects the tape after it’s done, the phone rings and a voice tells her “7 days”. The next day, Rachel has her ex-husband Noah, who works in photo and video editing, take her picture, revealing her face is also blurred. She has Noah watch the tape but he thinks it is some weird student film and when the phone rings, she refuses to answer it and deletes the message. Rachel makes a copy of the tape for Noah and they try to examine it further but when Noah’s assistant come into his studio, Rachel grabs the copy, as she doesn’t want anyone else to see it. Rachel examines the tape herself and notices a lighthouse in one of the images. After doing some research, Rachel finds out that the lighthouse is on Moesko Island and sees the woman featured in the video in a picture of a dedication for the lighthouse. Rachel learns that the woman’s name is Anna Morgan and that she had committed suicide after the majority of the horses on the Morgan family ranch died of a mysterious illness. Rachel begins having strange dreams involving a black haired girl in a white dress who is soaking wet and when she wakes up on Monday, she sees that Aidan has watched the tape. When Noah calls to say that he believes her, as his face is now blurred in pictures, Rachel tells him that Aidan watched the tape. Leaving Aidan with Ruth, Rachel asks Noah to try and get the records for Anna from the psychiatric hospital that she was committed to while she takes the ferry to Moesko Island and tries getting answers there. On the ferry, Rachel sees a horse in a trailer but as she tries to pet it, it freaks out, escapes the trailer, and runs around the ferry before jumping over the side and getting killed by the ferry’s propellers. Rachel heads to the Morgan ranch and speaks with Anna’s husband Richard about the horses and the tape but Richard is cryptic and denies that they had a daughter. When she goes to see the town doctor, the doctor admits that the Morgans could not conceive a child so the adopted Samara but says that the last she heard, Samara was at the psychiatric hospital and that things on the island have been better since she has been gone. Meanwhile, Noah breaks into the hospital and finds Anna’s records, but when he tries to call Rachel with what he knows, he doesn’t get an answer so he heads to the island himself. That night, Rachel sneaks into the Morgan’s house and finds the tape of Samara’s psychotherapy sessions, and learns how Samara had the ability to etch her thoughts onto objects and into the minds of people and animals. As she watches the tape, Richard sneaks up behind Rachel and strikes her, then grabs the TV. He takes it upstairs and tells Rachel that Samara will never stop, then electrocutes himself. Noah arrives at the house just as this happens and they head into the barn, where they find the loft that was converted into Samara’s room. Examining the room, Rachel and Noah find an image of a tree painted onto a wall that was covered by wallpaper and Rachel recognizes it not just as the tree in the tape, but from the cabin where she watched the tape. When they get to the cabin, Rachel starts to give up hope while Noah starts throwing things around but when they notice some glass beads rolling onto a particular spot on the floor, they tear up the floor boards to discover an old stone well. As they try to peer down into it, a swarm of flies fly out just as Rachel ends up getting knocked down into the well. As Noah goes to get some rope to help Rachel escape, the lid suddenly closes and Rachel sees how Anna had killed Samara and thrown her into the well but Samara had managed to survive and lived for 7 days before she finally died. Samara’s body floats to the surface and Rachel holds it and watches as it turns into a skeleton before she lets it sink back into the water. The authorities arrive and Noah tells Rachel that Samara will be buried next week and that it is over, as Rachel has survived the 7 days. Rachel and Noah go pick up Aidan and head back to Rachel’s place before Noah head home. The next morning, Rachel is talking with Aidan about Samara and she notices the hand prints on his arm that are similar to when Samara had grabbed her and Aidan tells her that Samara never sleeps. At his studio, Noah is looking over some pictures when his TV suddenly comes on and shows the image of the well. As Noah watches, he sees Samara climbing out of the well and then crawls out of the TV and approaches him. Rachel tries calling Noah but when he doesn’t answer, she rushes over to his studio only to find Noah dead in his chair, with a puddle of water on the floor around him. Returning to her apartment, Rachel burns the tape and tries to figure out why she was spared when she remembers the copy of the tape she made. Rachel takes Aidan with her and has him make a copy of the tape, which Rachel plans on showing to someone so that Aidan will be spared but Aidan asks what will happen to them and Rachel doesn’t have an answer for him.

The Ring (2002) met with mixed to positive results from the critics, holding a 71% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is that, “With little gore and a lot of creepy visuals, The Ring gets under your skin, thanks to director Gore Verbinski’s haunting sense of atmosphere and an impassioned performance from Naomi Watts.” The killer video in the movie was used in commercials for a month before any mention of the movie was made. The movie was a box office success, earning $249.3 million off of a $48 million budget.

This was a really good movie, and honestly just makes me want to watch the original movie that much more (I should really get on that). The acting was great, with Naomi Watts (Rachel), Martin Henderson (Noah), and Brian Cox (Richard) doing great jobs in their roles. The story was good, using a lot of suspense to help set the tone and keep you enthralled. The special effects were surprisingly better than I expected, and there were a couple of really great scenes in there. I especially liked the effects where Rachel was able to grab the fly out of the video and Samara exiting the TV. A great horror movie and definitely worth watching.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Standard
drama, fantasy, horror, movie, movie review, Uncategorized

May 23rd, 2017 Movie – Rasen

rasen

Ok, now this is a perfect example of me completely falling asleep on the job. Back in the dying days of Blockbuster, I was buying dozens of movies for cheap at the nearby stores. Well, one day I noticed that they had almost all of the Ring movies, both the Japanese and American remakes, and decided to purchase them. Key word there is ALMOST. See, the one movie that the did not have was Ringu, the original Japanese version of The Ring (2002). No worries though, I said to myself, I will simply find it somewhere else or buy it online. Obviously, I never actually got around to doing that which is why I end up watching the original sequel to that movie today. Well, time to stop kicking myself for being a procrastinator and watch today’s movie, Rasen.

The plot: Mitsuo Ando, suffering from his own bout of depression, receives a phone call telling him that Ryuji Takayama, a friend from medical school, is dead and he is to perform an autopsy on the body. When Ando arrives at work, he finds several police there discussing the matter and how there are no signs of foul play but no sign as to why he died either. Ando performs the autopsy but as it is nearly finished, he has a vision of Ryuji’s body suddenly sitting up and commenting about how Ando can’t even slit his own wrists but he can cut up his body. As Ando is washing off after the autopsy, one of his assistants hands him a note that was found inside Ryuji’s stomach. Ando speaks with the detective assigned to the case, who tells him about Ryuji having reconnected with his ex-wife Reiko Asakawa but the day Ryuji died, she disappeared along with their son Yoichi. The detective has Ando try and speak with Ryuji’s girlfriend, Mai Takano, and Ando asks her some questions concerning Ryuji’s health before he died. When the detective starts asking her questions, Mai ends up fainting and wakes up to find Ando looking after her. The two talk and Mai says that Ryuji had mentioned Ando before and talked about how they came up with coded messages during med school. She mentions the video and then says that Ryuji told her that only Ando could figure out what is going on. Mai heads back to Ryuji’s apartment, where she has a vision of how Ryuji died as well as a flashback to when she found him and she breaks down and cries over the chalk outline left in the floor. The next day, Ando is discussing the case with his boss when they receive a phone call from the police saying that they found Reiko and Yoichi, as she had been involved in a car crash. When Ando and his boss show up at the scene, the detective tells him that it appears that Yoichi was already dead before the crash occurred. When a man, Yoshino, photographs the inside of the car, the detective yells at him and Yoshino explains that he was Reiko’s boss and points out a smashed video deck in the car, which draws Ando’s interest. Later, Ando is talking to Mai about the crash and she talks about how Ryuji was acting before he died. Yoshino shows up at the med school to speak to Ando and shows him Reiko’s diary, which describes a video tape that somehow kills people. Reiko first heard about it when 4 people watched the tape and then all died a week later from heart attacks. She went and found the tape and learned of Sadako Yamamura, the young woman that is on the tape. Yoshino says that Reiko believed if you made a copy of the tape and showed it to someone else, then you would be spared from the tape’s curse. Yoshino then hands Ando the dub of the tape that he found in Reiko’s apartment and hands it to him, saying it is a present. When Ando gets home, he works on trying to decipher the coded message that was found in Ryuji’s stomach and realizes it spells present. Figuring it means the tape, Ando watches it and ends up being visited by Sadako’s spirit and he quickly smashes the tape. The next day, he goes to see Yoshino and tells him not to report on Sadako and tells him to give him the copy of the tape that he made so that he can destroy it, so that he will be the last victim but Yoshino refuses and Ando ends up being knocked unconscious when he tries to attack Yoshino for the tape. Ando talks to Mai and says he believes Ryuji knew this would happen and he would ensure all of the copies of the tape were destroyed after he got what he wanted. When Mai asks what he means, he tells her about his son dying and how he wanted to kill himself but keeps chickening out so by watching the tape, he will get his wish but Mai says that Ryuji wouldn’t have wanted that. Ando goes to see Yoshino at his home and sees pictures of scenes from the tape and accuses Yoshino of watching it. Yoshino swears he didn’t and hands Ando the diary and the copy of the tape he had but as he heads to his room, he collapses to the floor. Ando checks on him and determines he is dead, just as Mai shows up and Ando quickly ushers her out of the room. Ando smashes the tape and says that he will be the curse’s last victim and Mai tries to console him as he admits that he is afraid of dying. Ando and Mai end up having sex and afterwards, Ando asks if Mai will stay with him when he dies but she tells him she is too scared. Ando then decides to figure out what the curse could actually be and thinks it could be smallpox, as there was a smallpox clinic in the area where Sadako was killed, and has some cultures taken from him to see if he has it. Meanwhile, Mai wakes up feeling sick and heads to her bathroom to vomit but when she looks in the mirror, she sees Sadako standing behind her and when Ando goes to see Mai later, she has vanished. The next day, Ando gets the results back from his cultures and is told that he shows no sign of the virus, but Ando notices that his friend Miyashita, is coughing much like Yoshino was. Ando sees Mai in the lobby and the two sneak off to a stairway to make out but Ando is shocked when Mai licks him much like Sadako did in his dream. When a body is fished out of an air shaft, Ando is called to the hospital and sees that it is Mai. The detective tells him that it looked like she had just given birth but there was no sign of the baby. As Ando heads back to his car, Miyashita approaches him, showing signs of infection, and says the diary also contains the virus, as both he and Yoshino never saw the video, and asks Ando how he cured himself but Ando says he didn’t do anything. Ando heads to the office to find the Mai look-a-like retrieving Reiko’s diary from his desk. She reveals herself to be Sadako, reborn when he had sex with Mai and explains how this came to be. She then tells Ando that the same process that allowed her to be reborn could let him bring his son back as well. Ando gets Miyashita to help him, though Miyashita says they are basically selling out the world to Sadako. Some time later, Ando is on the beach with his son when he is approached by Ryuji and Mai/Sadako. Ryuji says that Reiko’s diary is being turned into a novel and the virus will spread all over the world and after they leave, Ando feels guilty about what he did but chooses to accept it as he stares out into the ocean with his son.

Since I have not seen the original movie, I honestly can’t say how good of a sequel this is. On it’s own merits, this is a little weird and not quite what I expected. The acting was ok, with Koichi Sato (Ando) and Miki Nakatani (Mai) doing good jobs in their roles. The story was a bit confusing and tried to make this less of a supernatural horror movie and more of a medical/science style movie instead. From what I read, this is supposed to be closer to the book it is based on but it still just made it feel boring. There wasn’t much in the way of special effects but the camera work in the movie did a good job of giving this a more suspenseful tone than expected. A decent movie but definitely confusing and really serves to make me watch the first movie that much more.

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5

Standard