adventure, comedy, movie, movie review

October 5th, 2018 Movie -Austin Powers: International Man Of Mystery

austin powers

Ok folks. I am done playing catch up so it is back to reviewing all of the movies I bought or was gifted over the year. So let’s start with today’s movie, Austin Powers: International Man Of Mystery. Now in the interest of full disclosure, I have to admit that I did not buy this movie, nor did any of my friends give it to me. So how is it that I own this movie and doing a review for it, you might ask? Well, the answer to that lies in the modern era of movies and digital/ultraviolet copies. See, several of the movies I have bought over the years have codes for ultraviolet or digital copies included with them. So I had signed up for a Vudu account, and a Movies Anywhere account, and inputted the codes onto the site to get the digital copies of the movies. However, what I honestly didn’t notice at the time is that I was given several movies for free when I opened these accounts. The only reason I noticed was when I listed my movies in alphabetical order and this movie came up towards the front. So there are going to be some movie reviews over the next few weeks for movies that I honestly would never have considered buying, but I will be fair with my reviews. Now, onto to today’s movie. I will admit that I did not see this movie in theaters but I saw it numerous times when it came out on video, as it seemed like everyone wanted to rent it or would buy their own copy. I have to admit that it has been a while since I watched it so let’s see if it still holds up.

The plot: In a secret lair outside of Las Vegas in 1967, Dr. Evil is holding a meeting with some of the world’s deadliest assassins, where he chastises them for failing to kill Austin Powers; promptly killing 4 of them and leaving Frau Farbissina and Mustafa still alive to deal with Austin. In London, Austin Powers and his partner, Mrs. Kensington, are contacted by Basil Exposition, head of British Intelligence, who warns them about a plot to kill Austin at the Electric Psychedelic Pussycat Swingers Club. Austin and Mrs. Kensington head to the club and uncover one of the assassins posing as a woman but before the can question him, he is shot in the back with a harpoon by Dr. Evil. Austin and Mrs. Kensington give chase only to see Dr. Evil, and his cat Mrs. Bigglesworth get into a cryo-preservation pod and launch into space inside a rocket disguised as a Big Boy statue. 30 years later, a NORAD radar operator contacts Commander Gilmour to alert him about an object shaped like Big Boy entering Earth’s orbit before it disappears somewhere over Nevada. Realizing what this means, Gilmour heads to London and meets with Basil at the British Department of Defense. Basil explains that Austin had volunteered to be frozen in case Dr. Evil returns and they proceed to thaw him out. Once Austin is thawed out, he is introduced to his new partner, Mrs. Kensington’s daughter Vanessa, who tells him that she will be working on getting him acclimated to the 90’s, and after collecting his possessions, they head out to his private jet and take off for Nevada. Meanwhile, in Dr. Evil’s lair, Dr. Evil meets with his henchmen, having Mustafa killed for his failure with the cryo unit that resulted in Mrs. Bigglesworth’s hair falling out. Dr. Evil then introduces Frau Farbissina to Patty O’Brien, Random Task, and Numer 2, who runs the legitimate arm of Dr. Evil’s empire, Virtucon. Dr, Evil tells his henchmen that he has some ideas on holding the world for ransom but when he is told that his plans have already occurred, he decides that they should just steal a nuke and blackmail for $100 billion (after learning that $1 million is no longer as high a sum as it was in ’67). Later, Frau tells him that the used some of the semen he had frozen to create a son, and introduces him to Scott but Scott is resentful that Dr. Evil is just now showing up and tells him that he hates him. On Austin’s plane, Vanessa is trying to be serious about the mission but Austin keeps attempting to seduce her, only to be shot down. When they arrive in Las Vegas, Vanessa explains that they are undercover as a married couple and that Virtucon executives gamble at the casino they are staying in, then points out Number 2. Austin joins Number 2 at the black jack table and after losing his hand, tells Vanessa to keep an eye on his assistant, Alotta Fagina, while he follows Number 2. Austin follows Number 2 into the men’s room only to lose him but as he sits on one of the toilets, Patty O’Brien appears from a secret panel and attempts to strangle him but Austin is able to kill him by drowning him in the toilet. Back at his lair, Dr. Evil shows his cohorts that they have successfully grabbed the nuke before placing a call to the United Nations. Once he has them on the view screen, Dr. Evil tells them that they must pay him $100 billion if they want the nuke back, then ends the call when they tell him they don’t negotiate with terrorists. Back in Las Vegas, Austin and Vanessa are staking out Virtucon when Austin sees Random Task carrying Mrs. Bigglesworth out of the building and recognizes her. With nothing to do for the time being, Austin takes Vanessa for a night on the town and when they return to the hotel, a drunken Vanessa asks Austin to kiss her but he refuses, not wanting to take advantage of her. Vanessa then asks him to tell her about her mother when he knew her and Austin tells her that she loved her husband and if she wasn’t married, he might have tried being serious with her, as he loved her as well, but that ship sailed. Vanessa falls asleep and Austin receives a video call from Basil, telling him to sneak into Alotta Fagina’s penthouse and discover what she knows about something called Project Vulcan. Austin breaks into the penthouse and takes pictures of her files when Alotta Fagina returns to her penthouse, only to find Austin sitting there waiting for her. Austin speaks with her briefly before she changes into a kimono and invites Austin into the hot tub with her and they eventually end up having sex, but not before Alotta learns Austin’s real identity. The next day, Vanessa takes Austin to get some new equipment and Austin shows Basil the files he photographed from Alotta’s penthouse while Vanessa tells Basil that they plan on going as tourists on the tour of Virtucon and see if they can discover where Project Vulcan is and shut it down. Meanwhile, Dr. Evil is upset that Austin is getting close to their scheme but Frau shows him her new weapon to kill Austin; android women called Fembots, with guns hidden inside their breasts. Dr. Evil is pleased with the Fembots but is less than thrilled having to attend a father/son counseling session with Scott. Back in Las Vegas, Vanessa talks to Austin and voices her concerns and jealousy about Alotta Fagina and when Austin tells her she was right to be concerned, as he did sleep with her, Vanessa gets upset with him, telling him that this isn’t the 60’s anymore. Austin goes out and has a hard look at himself, realizing almost everyone he knew is dead and how much really happened while he was frozen. The next day, Austin and Vanessa head to Virtucon and sneak inside but after they make it past the guards, they are knocked unconscious by Random Task and transported to Dr. Evil’s lair. Inside his lair, Dr. Evil contacts the U.N. and tells them what Project Vulcan entails and the U.N. agrees to pay the ransom. Dr. Evil then has Austin and Vanessa join him for dinner, which confuses Scott as he feels they should just shoot them and be done with it. Dr. Evil tells Scott that he doesn’t get how things work, then orders Austin and Vanessa lowered into a pit containing sharks with lasers on their head but Number 2 says they couldn’t get the sharks and instead have mutated sea bass. Leaving Austin and Vanessa to their fate, Dr. Evil heads off to start the drill for Project Vulcan. Austin and Vanessa manage to escape the trap and Austin sends Vanessa to get some back up while he keeps an eye on Dr. Evil but he ends up being captured by the fembots. Trying to get away from the fembots, Austin decides to counter their charms with his own and ends up shorting them out and making their heads explode. Vanessa shows up at the aftermath and wonders why Austin is in his briefs and when he explains what happened, she tells him she believes him and to get dressed. Austin and Vanessa lead an attack on the drilling platform and Austin manages to abort the drill before it reaches the Earth’s core but Dr. Evil gets away. Austin chases after him and goes to capture him but Alotta Fagina appears, holding a gun to Vanessa’s head. Austin grabs Scott to hold hostage but when Dr. Evil tells Austin to go ahead and kill him, Scott runs out of the room. Number 2 shows up but instead of helping Dr. Evil, he tells Austin he wants to give him the evidence he needs to put Dr. Evil away, as Number 2 would prefer continuing to run Virtucon as a legit company. Dr. Evil kills Number 2 and Vanessa uses the distraction to knock out Alotta Fagina but Dr. Evil gets back into his cryo chamber and blasts off in the Big Boy Rocket, activating the self destruct before he leaves. Austin, Vanessa, and their team get away and three months later, Austin and Vanessa are shown to be married. As they are enjoying their honeymoon, Basil calls them to tell them that Dr. Evil has disappeared from their scopes. After hanging up on Basil, they hear a knock on the door and Austin thinks it is the room service he ordered but it turns out to be Random Task, who attempts to kill Austin. Austin and Vanessa manage to beat him and after getting rid of him, they go out on to their balcony to look at the stars and see the Big Boy rocket flying in space, where Dr. Evil vows revenge on Austin Powers.

Austin Powers: International Man Of Mystery met with positive reviews from the critics, holding a 70% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is, “A light and goofy comedy which provides laughs, largely due to performances and screenwriting by Myers.” The America Online on Austin’s computer is version 3.0. In the commentary on the DVD, Director Jay Roach states that he did the AOL product placement to get a free year of service from them. The movie was a box office hit, earning $67.7 million off of a $16.5 million budget and would become a cultural  icon of the late 90’s/early ’00’s, and would spawn 2 sequels, with a 3rd sequel supposedly in development since 2005 but has yet to progress any further.

Maybe my taste in comedy have changed some in the last 20 years but while I still find this movie to be funny, it is not to the same degree that I once thought it was. The acting was good, with Mike Meyers doing a good job in the dual roles of Austin Powers and Dr. Evil. I also liked Elizabeth Hurley as Vanessa Kensington and thought that Robert Wagner (Number 2), Mindy Sterling (Frau Farbissina), and Seth Green (Scott) made for some funny scenes. The story was pretty funny, mainly spoofing James Bond but also spoofing the 60’s spy genre in general. I also liked the idea of a man being thrown out of time and forced to adapt, as it brings the story of Rip Van Winkle to new life in a way. The comedy was pretty much one sexual innuendo joke after another for the most part, with a couple of slap stick elements and some bantering to kind of even things out. It might not be as funny to everyone now but it is still one of those movies that is good for a laugh.

Rating: 4 out of 5

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horror, movie, movie review, sci-fi

Flashback Review: June 20th, 2014 Movie – Carnosaur

carnosaur

Back in 1991, I read a book from arguably one of my favorite authors, Michael Crichton, called “Jurassic Park”. Being the dinosaur nut that I was as a kid, this book was right up my alley. A year later, I heard about the major motion picture being made based on the book and I, like millions of other people, got excited about the news. However, what most people didn’t know at the time is that there was another dinosaur movie, based on a different book, that came out a month before Jurassic Park. Now I did not see this movie in theaters when it was out but I did hear about it as it came out on video and since it was made by Roger Corman, I knew I had to watch it. Over the years, I would catch Carnosaur on TV every now and then and after a coupe more years, I decided to go ahead and by the series on DVD and have yet to be disappointed in the decision.

The plot: In Washington D.C., a meeting is held at the Advanced Research Projects Administration concerning Dr. Jane Tiptree, a brilliant genetic scientist who has disappeared from the public eye. The head of the Eunice Corporation says she is working for them but they can’t legally interfere with her research due to the way her contract is structured or else they will lose their patents. At the Eunice Corporation testing facility in Nevada, disguised as a poultry plant, some men are checking on the chickens that Tiptree had been experimenting on when they notice one of the chickens had died laying a giant egg. As they stare at the egg, it suddenly hatches and the creature inside slashes one of the guard’s face before disappearing. The head of security, Jesse Paloma, tells the front gate not to let anyone in or out until the creature is found but the guard lets a delivery driver, carrying a load of chickens out. As the driver heads down the highway, something attacks some of the chickens inside the back of the truck and as the driver pulls over to investigate, he is killed by the creature, a small Deinonychus. Elsewhere, a drunken security guard named Doc Smith chases some environmental activists from the construction site he is guarding, but finds that they had disabled some of the equipment. As he goes to check the other machines, he finds another activist named Thrush (formerly Ann) hiding in the machine and takes her back to her trailer while he calls the sheriff. Sheriff Fowler tells Doc that he will send a car over when he can, as he is busy dealing with the dead delivery driver, though neither he nor the doctor can figure out what killed him. The body is taken to the nearby morgue and the coroner sends a wound sample to a friend to get his opinion. The next day, Fowler and Doc head to a local commune, as Doc fell asleep and let Thrush escape, but when they get there, Doc tells Fowler that the woman he saw is not there, even as he looks right at Thrush. Later that day, Thrush heads to the dig site to thank Doc but gets annoyed by his overly sarcastic and uncaring attitude. Meanwhile, Paloma is telling his men to find the creature, while his daughter sneaks out of the house to go joyriding with her boyfriend and another friend. As they drive off into the desert, they stop as they get close to a cliff but the Deinonychus attacks and kills Paloma’s daughter and her boyfriend, while severely wounding the third teenager. As a security team continues looking for the Deinonychus, they eventually see it and try to recapture it but it attacks and kills them, all of which is seen by Tiptree. At the same time, Thrush is walking back to the commune when Doc pulls up and offers her a lift, blackmailing her into getting into the car. As they are driving, they come up on the injured teenager and stop to try and help him. Paloma learns about his daughter’s death and blames Tiptree for her death. Tiptree tells him she had brought his daughter’s body to the facility and lets him go see her but she actually lured him into a trap, where Paloma comes face to face with a Tyrannosaurus that is being held behind a laser fence, which Tiptree lowers so that the Tyrannosaurus can kill him. Back at the dig site, Doc finds Thrush and other members of her group chained to the vehicles and he tries to get them to leave but decides to let them be while he goes to get some food. While he is gone, the Deinonychus, having grown bigger since it killed the kids, shows up at the dig site and attacks and kills everyone but Thrush, who was inside the cab of one of the vehicles. When Doc returns, he sees all of the dead bodies and Thrush, who had passed out from shock, and calls Fowler, who takes the bodies to the coroner and he tells Fowler that the creature that did this is either growing or there are more than one of them. Meanwhile, Doc discovers the Eunice Corp. truck and when he hears Tiptree calling for a status report, he pretends to be the driver and breaks into the corporation, where he confronts Tiptree. At the dig site, Thrush regains consciousness only for the Deinonychus to attack Doc’s trailer but she grabs Doc’s rifle and fires at it, chasing it away. The next day, Fowler is talking with his wife, who tells him that both herself and their kids have the flu that is going around town, and Fowler tells her to let him handle the cooking but when he goes to cook some eggs, he finds them all discolored and a Deinonychus embryo is in one of them, which he takes to the coroner to examine. Back at Eunice, Tiptree’s assistant says she isn’t feeling good and Tiptree tells her to come downstairs to her lab. When she gets there, it is revealed that she is pregnant and she dies giving birth but instead of a baby, she produces a giant egg. Doc is shocked at what he saw and discovers that Tiptree has even more eggs in an incubator by her lab and threatens to destroy the eggs unless Tiptree answers his questions. Meanwhile, the head of the A.R.P.A. has learned about what is going on in Nevada and orders the military to quarantine the area, killing everybody in the area, as they discovered that Tiptree had made a virus that infected women and made them give birth to dinosaurs, while dying in the process. At Eunice, Tiptree is explaining why she did what she did, convinced that human would kill the world so it was better to return it to a purer time. In town, Fowler investigates a break-in at the pet store and is confronted by the Deinonychus and shoots it but it stabs him with it’s claw as it dies, killing him. Back at the lab, Doc says that Tiptree must have made an anti virus, shooting the eggs until she gives it to him. Doc leaves, making his way through the laser fence and past the Tyrannosaurus but it chases after him, breaking free of it’s enclosure in the facility. Meanwhile, Tiptree lays down and gives birth to a dinosaur, that bursts out of her stomach. Doc heads back to his trailer and gives Thrush the anti-virus but as he tries calling for help, he hears about the military roadblock and the Tyrannosaurus on the loose and realizes that it is heading towards them, as the site was part of the dinosaur migration route. When the Tyrannosaurus arrives, Doc helps Thrush into a mini bulldozer, then gets into one of his own and they proceed to fight off the Tyrannosaurus, eventually killing it. Doc helps Thrush back into the trailer and when he hears someone calling out over the CB if anyone is alive, he responds and asks for a doctor but the military shows up and shoots both Doc and Thrush, then sets fire to them and the trailer.

Carnosaur met with poor results from the critics, holding an 11% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. While there isn’t a critical consensus on the site, the critics all felt that while the movie may have been more provocative, it was hampered by the ridiculous and cheap feel of it. Despite being competing franchises, there is a funny tie in to the Jurassic Park franchise within the movie. Diane Ladd’s daughter Laura Dern, would play Dr. Ellie Sattler in Jurassic Park and Jurassic Park III while Clint Howard’s niece, Bryce Dallas Howard, would play Clair Dearing in Jurassic World and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. The movie was a mild hit at the box office, earning $1.8 million off of a $850,000 budget and would go on to spawn 2 sequels and 2 spin-offs.

Ahh, this entire franchise is one of my favorite so bad it’s good movies and it all started with this one. This movie is not a good movie but it is a lot of fun to watch. The acting was ok, with Diane Ladd (Tiptree) and Raphael Sbarge (Doc) doing good jobs in their roles. The story was interesting and I liked the dual plot of the virus rewriting the human females’ DNA to both kill them off and give birth to dinosaurs, as well as the dinosaurs killing people themselves. While the story was good, the pacing of the movie was odd, as some of the scenes didn’t seem to sync up right or it would be daylight, then nighttime, then daylight again but it would still all be the same day. The special effects were incredibly cheap looking, especially the Tyrannosaurus, but that is honestly part of the charm to this movie, as they are rather laughably bad. It is not a major blockbuster source of entertainment, but it has it’s own charm that can be fun to watch.

Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5

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comedy, fantasy, horror, movie, movie review

January 6th, 2018 Movie – Leprechaun 2

leprechaun 2

As much of a fan of horror movie that I was back in my teenage years, and I admit I am still a fan now as an adult, I will admit that this one completely slipped by me when it was in theaters. Then again, I was only moderately impressed with the original Leprechaun so I don’t think it is that much of a slight on me to not catch this one. Anyways, I remember catching glimpses of this movie every now and then on late night TV back in the day but never really got around to watching the entire movie in one sitting. I guess it is fortunate that my friend decided to get me the 4-pack of the first 4 Leprechaun movies for Christmas. So lets see how good of a movie I am in store for with today’s movie, Leprechaun 2.

The plot: On March 17th, 1894, a man named William O’Day is running through the woods when he is suddenly choked and dropped to the ground. A Leprechaun appears and taunts him, as he has placed a magic collar on O’Day as punishment for trying to steal the Leprechaun’s gold. The Leprechaun tells him that as this is his 1000 birthday, he is able to choose any woman to be his bride when the chosen girl sneezes three times and says that once he is wed, he will grant O’Day his freedom. O’Day agrees to help the Leprechaun obtain his bride but when he sees the girl the Leprechaun chose, he is horrified to discover it is his own daughter. O’Day begs the Leprechaun to choose someone else but the Leprechaun begins blowing through the underbrush, causing the girl to sneeze twice. When she sneezes a third time, O’Day says “God bless you, my child.” and attempts to run but the Leprechaun stops him. He says that since O’Day stopped him from marrying his daughter, he has cursed his family and on his 2000th birthday, he will marry his descendant, then proceeds to kill O’Day. 1000 years later in Los Angeles, Bridget meets up with her boyfriend Cody, who works as a barker for a death-themed tour company run by his uncle/guardian Morty. The two plan on spending the afternoon together but when they find Morty drunk at a bar, Cody is forced to give the tour, bringing an unhappy Bridget along with him. As they go through the tour, they pass a homeless man, who happens to scare the tourists, but when the homeless man lays down by a tree, his whiskey bottle is mysteriously dragged into the tree. The man sees this and goes to grab it back only to be attacked by the Leprechaun, who notices the man’s gold tooth and grabs it from his mouth to add to his own collection. Back on the tour, Cody stops at the Go-Kart track where they were supposed to meet with their friends and Bridget gets out and storms inside, with Cody trying to follow after her. Bridget is greeted by Ian, the manager, who starts flirting with her and has someone cover his shift so he can hang out with her. When Cody enters, Ian mocks him as Cody tries to talk to Bridget and he promises that things will be different next time but Bridget tells him there won’t be a next time and walks off. A dejected Cody ends up running a red light and getting pulled over by the police and arrested for driving without a license. Morty heads down to pick up Ian and as they are leaving, they see the homeless man being brought in, telling the cops he was attacked by a leprechaun. Later that night, Ian drops off Bridget at her house and tries to convince her to invite him in but she refuses. As he is leaving, he suddenly hears Bridget calling out to him from the garage. Bridget says she is sorry and wants to make it up to him and begins removing her shirt but as Ian approaches her, it is revealed to be a trick by the Leprechaun and Ian ends up being killed by the overturned lawnmower the Leprechaun’s magic had made to look like Bridget. Meanwhile, Cody heads to Bridget’s house and brings her some flowers to apologize and as they talk, they don’t notice the Leprechaun sneaking into the house. The Leprechaun makes Bridget start sneezing and when she sneezes the third time, Cody goes to say “God bless you” but the Leprechaun causes the phone cord to wrap around his neck, stopping him. As the Leprechaun appears, Cody is able to cut himself free and confronts him but the Leprechaun drops a pot rack on him, knocking him out. Bridget tries to run and call for help but the Leprechaun says he is claiming her as his bride, tossing a gold collar around her neck. When the Leprechaun uses his magic to bring her closer to him, she knocks over his pot of gold. As the Leprechaun goes to gather his gold, a gold coin rolls along the floor into Cody’s hand, rousing him from unconsciousness. Bridget helps Cody up and they try to run but the Leprechaun knocks Cody down and grabs Bridget again. Cody throws a fire poker at the Leprechaun and the iron burns his hand when he catches it but he quickly disappears with Bridget. The Leprechaun takes Bridget to the tree where ‘he has made his home and reveals that Bridget is a descendant of O’Day. As he turns his back on Bridget and fixes a drink, she knocks him over the head with a rock and tries to run, only to find the skeleton of O’Day. The Leprechaun appears and uses his magic to wrap her in a blanket and take her to her bed. As he stands over her, he tells her that he must make some changes to her body to enable her to bear his children. As he tries to tempt her with his gold, the Leprechaun realizes he is missing a gold shilling and quickly gathers it all back into his pot. The Leprechaun plans on leaving to find his gold and Bridget begs him to let her loose, saying she want’s to look pretty for him when he gets back so the Leprechaun frees her and hands her a red dress to wear when he returns, then licks her face before leaving. At Bridget’s house, the police are there investigating Ian’s death and have found the note from Cody when he brought the flowers to Bridget but the Leprechaun grabs the note and heads off to Cody’s place. Meanwhile, Cody sees the cops talking to Morty and sneaks inside their apartment after they leave so he can talk to Morty. Morty doesn’t believe Cody’s story, despite Cody showing him the gold shilling, but the Leprechaun shows up and attacks them. Cody offers the Leprechaun the shilling back in exchange for Bridget and the Leprechaun agrees but Morty knocks a bookcase onto him, saying you can’t trust a leprechaun, and they escape out the fire escape, with the Leprechaun unable to follow due to the wrought iron bars on the window. Cody and Morty head to the bar to hide and while Cody uses the restroom, he is approached by a little person dressed as a leprechaun, who offers him one of his chocolate coins wrapped in gold foil. Noticing the little person’s gold tooth, Cody remembers the homeless man’s story at the police station and goes to tell Morty that he knows where Bridget is but Morty tells him the Leprechaun is here, pointing to the end of the bar. The Leprechaun sits next to them and demands his coin, mocking Cody’s demand to return Bridget by saying she is a married woman. Morty attempts to trick the Leprechaun by having a drinking contest with him but while the Leprechaun is drinking liquor, Morty is actually drinking soda and water. The Leprechaun becomes to drunk to properly use his magic and Morty grabs him but the Leprechaun is able to turn on the jukebox, distracting Morty enough to allow the Leprechaun to hit him over the head with a bottle and escape. Meanwhile, Bridget keeps trying to find a way out of the Leprechaun’s lair but his magic makes the place like an unending maze, where she constantly appears back in the main chamber. She eventually finds a box buried in the ground and retrieves an awl, which she keeps to use against the Leprechaun when he returns. The Leprechaun heads to a coffee bar to sober up but when the manger tries to get him to pay his bill, the Leprechaun thinks he is after his gold and kills him. Cody gets an idea and they head to the go-kart place, which has a wrought-iron safe, and make plans to capture the Leprechaun. When a security guard captures Morty, Morty is able to knock him out but is then attacked  by the Leprechaun. Cody calls out to the Leprechaun and when he goes through the doggy door after him, he ends up entering the safe, which Cody had placed in front of the opening. Cody quickly closes the door but when he goes to get some two-by-fours to help load it into the car, Morty locks him inside the storage closet. Morty then yells that since he captured the Leprechaun, he gets three wishes and uses his first wish to wish for the Leprechaun’s pot of gold. The Leprechaun fulfills the wish, but causes the pot of gold to appear inside Morty’s stomach. Scared to die from the gold inside him, Morty uses his second wish to free the Leprechaun and his third to wish the gold out of his stomach and the Leprechaun proceeds to rip open his stomach to get his gold back. Cody breaks free of the storage room but is arrested by a police officer for Morty’s death. As he is being taken to the police car, they hear a girls voice coming from the go-kart track and Cody tries to warn him but the police officer heads out there and ends up being killed by the Leprechaun in a modified go-kart. When the Leprechaun tries to kill Cody, he can’t and Cody realizes that the Leprechaun’s magic won’t hurt him as long as he has the shilling and heads off to rescue Bridget. The Leprechaun returns to his lair to prepare for Cody’s arrival and Bridget tries to seduce him and when he is distracted, stabs him with the awl but, since it is not made of wrought iron, it breaks and the Leprechaun has her tied up by some tree roots. Meanwhile, Cody reaches the tree and heads inside but ends up being attacked by O’Day’s skeleton. Cody manages to free himself and finds Bridget, who had used the awl to remove the collar from her neck, and the two try to get out of the lair, with the Leprechaun chasing after them. When the continue to find themselves in the main lair, Cody comes up with an idea when he gets separated from Bridget. When he goes looking for her, he finds her and she tells him that she found a way out. Cody wants to leave but Bridget says that he should leave the coin, as that is what the Leprechaun wants, kissing him to try and convince him. Cody hands Bridget the coin but she transforms into the Leprechaun and mocks him for giving him the coin. The real Bridget begs him not to hurt Cody but the Leprechaun uses his powers to toss Cody away. Bridget runs to Cody and says that he killed him and the Leprechaun goes to take Bridget away but Cody sits up and throws the iron poker he was carrying into the Leprechaun’s chest. He then reveals that the coin he gave the Leprechaun was the chocolate coin from the bar and Cody and Bridget quickly leave as the Leprechaun explodes. Outside the tree, Bridget asks Cody how he knew it wasn’t her and Cody says that the fake Bridget kissed different than her, then tosses the shilling away, saying it isn’t worth the trouble, as he and Bridget leave.

Leprechaun 2 was absolutely panned by the critics, holding a 0% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. While there isn’t a critical consensus on the site, most of the critics felt that it added nothing new to the original movie, which they felt was lacking to begin with. Despite the theme of the franchise, this is the only movie in the series to actually take place during St. Patrick’s Day. The movie made $2.3 million at the box office and would be the last one to be given a theatrical release, as subsequent sequels would be relegated to direct to video status.

Ok, this was boring with a capital BOR. I honestly taking a nap while watching this movie because there wasn’t really much going for it. The acting was ok, with Warwick Davis doing a good job reprising his role as the Leprechaun and I actually liked Sandy Baron as Morty. However, the two leads of Charlie Heath (Cody) and Shevonne Durkin (Bridget) were just boring. The story added a slight twist regarding the whole marriage aspect but for the most part, it was still the Leprechaun going after a missing piece of his gold. The one thing I did like was that they added the whole iron being anathema to members of the Fey race, which includes leprechauns. The special effects didn’t seem as good as the original movie and just looked overly weak at best. Chalk up one more victim to the “Sequel’s Curse” and just avoid this one.

Rating: 2 out of 5

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horror, movie, movie review

September 7th, 2017 Movie – Silent Night, Deadly Night 5: The Toy Maker

silent night deadly night 5

Well, it’s time to finish out this Christmas themed horror franchise. Now I will admit that just like the previous movie, I never saw this movie or even knew it existed until fairly recently. As messed up as the last movie was, I am curious as to what exactly this movie will be about. Only one way to find out so let’s dive right in to today’s movie, Silent Night, Deadly Night 5: The Toy Maker.

The plot: One night in December, Derek Quinn hears the doorbell ring and goes to get his parents but sees them having sex so he quickly shuts the door. Heading downstairs, Derek opens the front door and finds a present addressed to him on the front porch. He brings it inside and starts to open it but is stopped by his father Tom, who yells at Derek for being up so late and opening the door. Tom sends Derek back to bed but Derek stays at the top of the stairs and watches as his father opens the gift to find a Santa themed musical orb. Tom activates it and it starts playing Jingle Bells before suddenly playing a funeral dirge, as the hands and feet suddenly extend and wrap around his throat and head. Tom struggles to get the orb off of him and ends up impaling himself with a fire poker and collapses to the floor, where Derek’s mom Sarah finds him. Two weeks later, Derek has not spoken since his father’s death and Sarah is discussing the matter with her friend Kim when she stops by with Lonnie, whom she adopted after the previous movie. When Derek sees a commercial for the Santa music orb, he walks away from the TV and Sarah goes to comfort him, unaware of someone watching them from across the street. Sarah takes Derek to a toy store run by Joe Petto and his son Pino, to see if a new toy might cheer him up. As Joe is showing Derek various toys, the stranger, Noah, enters the shop and watches Derek and Sarah from behind a shelf. Derek doesn’t like any of the toys, including the Larry the Larvae that Pino tries to give him, and Sarah and Derek leave. After closing the door behind them, Joe starts to yell at Pino for chasing away their customers when Pino bumps into Noah, who purchases several toys including the Larry the Larvae toy. At his hotel room, Noah is working on taking apart the toys he bought from Petto’s when his landlord knocks on the door and threatens to evict him. Noah manages to placate his landlord by giving him some cash in the morning and offering him a present for his kid, handing him the Larry the Larvae toy. As he is driving home, the landlord activates the Larry the Larvae, which begins crawling towards him and manages to crawl into his mouth and eventually come out his eye, killing him and causing his car to crash. Meanwhile, Noah breaks into Petto’s store and starts looking around in the basement but is forced to hide when Joe comes downstairs and pours himself a glass of whiskey to drink. When he leaves, Noah goes to investigate the cellar door that Joe was looking at but as he starts to go down the ladder, someone grabs him and Noah manages to get away as Pino’s head pops up from the cellar. The next day, Noah is working as a mall Santa and when he sees Sarah and Derek in line, he takes his friend Ricky’s shift so he can be Santa when they come up. Meanwhile, Pino sneaks into Sarah and Derek’s house and begins looking around. Back at the mall, Derek is placed on Noah’s lap but when he refuses to talk, Sarah says they should leave and Noah tells her no but Sarah grabs Derek and leaves, deciding to head home early as she was unnerved by the Santa’s actions as well. When they arrive at the house, Sarah has Derek head inside while she gets the bags but when Kim says she saw someone moving around in the house, she races inside to find Derek and sees Pino run out of her closet and out of the house. Sarah goes to Petto’s and confronts Joe about what Pino did and Joe tells her that they used to live in that house until they fell on hard times and the house was foreclosed on. Sarah tells Joe that she won’t call the police but next time she will and Joe promises that it won’t happen again. Later that night, Joe yells at Pino for what he did and begins beating him in a drunken rage, accidentally knocking him down the cellar stairs and killing him. Meanwhile, Sarah brings the present that they found on the front porch earlier that day but Derek refuses to open it. When Kim comes by and talks with Sarah, Derek sneaks out and places the present in the garbage but Lonnie sees him and grabs the present out of the garbage. When he opens it, he finds a pair of roller blades and, after putting them on, begins skating along the sidewalk. As he heads back up to his house, a pair of rockets hidden in the skates activate and cause him to lose control and Lonnie ends up skating out into the street and is struck by a car. At the same time, the Santa orb rolls off the shelf and activates but Derek smashes it with a baseball bat. The next day, Sarah stops by the hospital to visit Lonnie and Kim and Kim shows her the skates, indicating that it wasn’t an accident. Meanwhile, Noah goes to the house and offers Derek a present but the babysitter, Meredith, slams the door on his face and tells him to leave. Noah says he is a friend of the family and asks to speak with Sarah and Meredith tells him where she works. Noah heads there and surprises Sarah in the parking garage and it is revealed that Noah is Sarah’s old boyfriend and Derek’s father and the two end up reconciling, as Noah wants to be with Sarah and Derek. Meanwhile, Meredith puts Derek to bed and then goes to have sex with her boyfriend Buck. Joe, dressed in a Santa suit, sneaks into the house and when he sees the two teenagers having sex, he places a bunch of toys from his sack on the floor. As the two continue to have sex, the toys all come to life and attack them and Derek sees this but is grabbed by Joe and placed in the sack. Back at her work, Noah and Sarah are about to leave when Noah asks what she knows about Joe, then tells her that Joe was arrested for selling booby-trapped toys to kids several years ago after his pregnant wife was killed in a car crash. When they get to Sarah’s home, a bloody Meredith greets them and tells them that Buck is dead and Joe took Derek. Sarah takes Noah’s jeep to head to the toy store and when Kim shows up to see what is going on, Noah tells her to watch over Meredith and call the police before he goes after her. Sarah arrives at the toy store and finds it locked but as she tries the back door, she finds the door to the upstairs apartment is open and she heads inside. Meanwhile, Noah arrives at the toy store and after picking the lock, heads downstairs to the cellar. He is attacked by a remote controlled plane and manages to destroy it but as he goes to leave, he is attacked by someone with a water gun filled with acid and falls into the shelves, causing dozens of boxes to fall on top of him. Sarah  is disturbed by what she sees in the apartment, including a picture of her and Derek with a knife driven through Derek’s face. Hearing the commotion from downstairs, Sarah grabs the knife and goes to investigate and eventually finds Petto’s workshop, where she discovers Joe’s body. When she is confronted by the Joe in a Santa suit, the fake Joe pulls off his face to reveal robotic components before putting on another face and revealing it is Pino. Pino explains that Joe had built him when his son had died but he was never good enough for Joe, and he would constantly break him when he got drunk, then rebuild him. Pino explains that he wanted Sarah to be his mom and had to kill Derek so that she would love him instead. As Pino tries to show his love for Sarah, she stabs him in the head with a screwdriver, causing him to malfunction. Pino then begins stabbing the Christmas sacks in order to kill Derek but Derek manages to stop him and jump on his back. Noah enters the room and as Sarah grabs Derek, Noah chops off Pino’s arm with an axe. Pno begins attacking Noah but as he goes to kill Noah, Sarah grabs the axe and chops Pino in half. Pino’s mangled crawls over to Joe’s body and starts pleading with him not to leave him, then grabs Sarah and starts calling her mommy but Sarah stomps his head into bits. Noah, Sarah, and Derek leave together, with Derek looking back into the room and saying “They’re just toys.” as he shuts the workshop door, not noticing one of the robots eyes beginning to spark like Pino’s had.

Ok, this is actually a halfway decent horror movie, though the ending was too cliched for my taste. The acting was pretty good, with William Thorne (Derek) and Jane Higginson (Sarah) doing good jobs in their roles. I will admit that it was a bit odd to see Mickey Rooney in his role of Joe Petto, but I did like Neith Hunter and Conan Yuzna reprising their roles of Kim and Lonnie from the previous film. The story was pretty good and while you could figure out the killer pretty quickly, the actual motive took a little longer to figure out. The special effects with the toys were pretty good and they showed a lot of creativity with some of the ways that the toys killed the victims. My only real problem was the ending, as even back in 1991, that type of ending was already too cliched in the horror genre. A decent movie and definitely a better way to end the franchise than the previous movie.

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5

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September 6th, 2017 Movie – Silent Night, Deadly Night 4: Initiation

silent night deadly night 4

When it comes to sequels, they are supposed to have some element of the original movie involved in the movie. So you have to ask yourself, if a sequel has nothing to do with the original movie, is it really a sequel? Well that is pretty much the case with today’s movie. Deciding to do away with the whole killer Santa theme, this direct-to-video sequel went in a different direction. Now, let’s see if that was a good idea as I watch Silent Night, Deadly Night 4: Initiation.

The plot: A homeless man is walking along the street when he hears a woman screaming and as he looks up at the roof of a nearby building, the woman suddenly bursts into flames and jumps off the roof, plummeting to her death on the street below. The next day, Kim Levitt and her boyfriend Hank are having a “nooner” during their lunch hour when Kim sees the story on TV. As they head back to The L.A. Eye, the newspaper they both work at, Kim tries to convince Hank to speak with their editor, Eli, about letting her cover the story, as she is tired of working as a classified ads editor. Hank is reluctant to do so and Kim gets upset when Eli talks with all of the male reporters but ignores her so she decides to go ahead and do the story anyways. Heading to where the incident occurred, she speaks to the owner of a butcher shop, who tells her that the woman wasn’t from around there and could have got onto the roof from any of the nearby apartments. After looking at the chalk outline, she heads into the bookstore next to it but is followed by the homeless guy that saw the woman die. When the man touches her, she yells at him to leave her alone and the owner, Fima, tells the man, Ricky, to head back upstairs. Fima then helps Kim find a book on spontaneous combustion and talks with her about the incident. As Kim pays for the book, Fima gives her a second book and invites her to a picnic. Kim asks Fima to show her to the roof and as she looks out at where the body fell, she suddenly feels dizzy and quickly steps off the ledge. She sees Ricky grabbing something inside a air duct and when he pulls out a large grub and tries to hand it to her, she freaks out and runs, slapping at her hands when she notices bugs crawling on them. At home, she continues to see bugs everywhere when Hank calls and she tells him she is getting changed and heads over to have dinner with his parents. During the dinner, Hank’s younger brother asks if Kim has her Christmas Tree up and Hank informs him that Kim is Jewish, which causes his father to start making comments on her being Jewish, as well as sexist comments about her working instead of being in the home. As Kim and Hank leave, Kim gets upset at Hank not sticking up for her with his father or at work and heads home alone. When she gets back to her apartment, she starts hallucinating about larger bugs when she suddenly gets sick and starts to vomit into the toilet before collapsing on the bathroom floor. The next day, Kim is woken up by her co-worker Janice knocking on her door and she explains her not being at work as eating something that didn’t agree with her. Later, she heads to the park where Fima greets her and introduces her to Katherine Harrison, who calls herself an old crone, and Jane Yanana. As the women talk, Kim asks Fima about an image in the book of a woman covered in fire from the waist down and the women explain that it is Lilith, Adam’s first wife. As Fima, Katherine, and Jane go for a walk, Kim lies down, claiming to have too much wine, but is startled by Hank, who is there to take her to work. When they get there, Ed is upset that Kim decided to pursue the story without his approval but after Hank says that she has finished all of the ad’s for the week, he allows her to continue working it. As Hank accompanies Kim back to the crime scene, he apologizes to her and they make up, then he leaves while Kim chooses to stay there, and goes to see Fima. Fima invites Kim into her apartment and offers Kim some tea. As Kim drinks it, she starts to feel nauseous and dizzy while Fima starts telling Kim about her daughter Lilith. As Kim starts to feel worse, Fima has her eat a date and despite Kim seeing it as a beetle, Fima orders her to eat it. Kim ends up passing out and when she wakes up, she finds herself surrounded by Fima, Katherine, Jane, and a 4th woman, Li. Fima orders Jane and Li to remove Kim’s clothes, then calls out for Ricky, who enters the room holding the giant grub. Ricky places the grub on Kim’s stomach, which makes it’s way into her stomach through her belly button, and it makes it’s way through her body and out her throat, having transformed into a large, multi-segmented beetle. Ricky then cuts the beetle in half and proceeds to drip the blood and guts onto Kim’s face before she passes out again. Kim wakes up and quickly leaves Fima’s apartment, despite Fima and the other’s attempts to keep her there and she heads to her apartment, and finds Hank in her bed waiting for her. Kim freaks out at everything that has happened and attempts to kill herself by overdosing on pulls but Hank stops her and tries to comfort her. Kim starts having sex with Hank and they don’t notice Ricky entering the apartment and watching them until he turns on the TV and starts laughing. Kim runs while Ricky and Hank start fighting and Ricky ends up stabbing Hank in the chest. As the fight continues, the phone rings and when Kim hears Janice speaking on the answering machine, she races for the phone and yells for Janice to get help but Ricky grabs her. As he works on gagging and tying her up, Hank recovers and tries to save her but Ricky finishes killing her. Janice arrives at the apartment and yells at Ricky for killing Hank, then frees Kim and tells her to go with Ricky, as the others are waiting to finish. Kim is taken to the butcher shop and placed in a meat locker, where she is made to drink some liquid and has her clothes removed. As Fima and the rest of the cult arrive, Ricky, wearing a phallic mask, is brought in and proceeds to rape Kim. When Kim wakes up, she finds herself in immense pain as her hands begin to tie themselves up into a knot, while her legs morph into an insect like tail, before she passes out again. The next morning, Kim finds herself back to normal, while the owner of the butcher shop and his wife arrive and say she has been initiated and that she can go. Kim heads to the bookstore, where Fima explains that the woman who jumped was her daughter and she is getting Kim to take her place. Fima and the others want her to bring them Hank’s younger brother Lonnie in order to complete the ritual but Kim refuses and runs out of the store. She calls the police to investigate Hank’s death but all evidence of the murder has been removed from her apartment. When she goes to the office Christmas party, Eli tells her that Hank is on assignment, while Janice tells her that she has to bring them the boy. Janice quickly leaves but when she sees Ricky waiting for her, she tries to run from him, ducking into a hotel room to get away from him. The TV suddenly comes on and Fima tells her that she has to bring them the boy and Kim’s feet start to burst into flames. She jumps in the shower but it doesn’t help and when Ricky enters the room, she begs him for help. Ricky tells her that she has to do what Fima wants and she agrees, which causes the fire to disappear. Kim and Ricky head to Hank’s parents house and Kim tricks Lonnie to come outside and into the van while Ricky kills Hank’s parents and accidentally sets the house on fire in the process. On the rooftop, Fima tells Kim that she has to kill Lonnie in order to complete the ritual. As the other women tell Kim to kill Lonnie, she refuses and stabs Fima with the knife, then frees Lonnie. Fima pulls the knife from her stomach and goes to stab Kim and when Ricky tries to stop her, she stabs him instead. Ricky falls and is eaten by the large grubs, while Fima approaches Kim, whose hands start to tie up into knows again and catch fire. As Fima taunts her, Kim says she won’t be like her and plunges her burning hand into Fima’s wound, transferring the curse to her. Fima bursts into flames and jumps off the roof to her death, just as her daughter did. Katherine and the others watch Fima’s body burn and Kim joins them briefly before getting Lonnie and telling him it’s all over now.

Ok, I will admit that this is a pretty messed up movie. The acting was ok, with Neith Hunter (Kim) doing a good job in the lead role, while Maud Adams (Fima) and Clint Howard (Ricky) were equally good in there roles as well. The story was honestly a confusing mess and didn’t really do a good job of explaining what was going on during the entire movie. There was kind of a linkage to the previous movies, as the movie Ricky was watching on TV was Silent Night, Deadly Night 3, though Ricky called it “Santa Claus Killer”. I will say that the grub going through Kim’s stomach and the rape scene were a bit much. The special effects were actually pretty good, which was surprising as I don’t think this movie had much of a budget. Not the best horror movie out there but it is also not the worst.

Rating: 2 out of 5

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