action, crime, movie, movie review, thriller

March 14th, 2018 Movie – Transporter 2

transporter 2

Happy Pie day everyone. MMMMMMMM, PIE!!!! I think I might get some on the way home tonight. With the way my work week is going, I could use the pick-me-up as I am most likely in for another slow, boring day at work. Luckily, a movie like this can help get the day started off right as there is nothing like a nice, adrenaline-fueled movie to get the blood pumping. So this was actually the first movie in the series that I watched, mainly because I was bored while wandering through Blockbuster and ended up renting it. So let’s get to driving with today’s movie, Transporter 2.

The plot: Frank Martin is sitting in his car in a parking garage in Miami, FL when he is approached by a teenage girl. The girl asks for his help in changing a flat tire but when Frank says he has an appointment and can’t be late, the girl points a gun at his head and tells him to get out. Frank gets out of the car as 4 men come out of hiding and get in the car but when they can’t start it due to the security code, they get out intending to beat Frank for the code. Frank quickly takes down the men, then tells the girl to go home before he climbs back in the car and drives off. Frank arrives at his destination and picks up Jack Billings from school, who excitedly asks if he can play a guessing game with Jack. When they arrive at the Billing’s home, Frank notices Jack’s parents, Jefferson and Audrey, arguing on the front steps and pulls past the steps so Jack doesn’t see it, under the pretense that he is letting Jack finish the game. After their argument finishes, Audrey approaches the helps Jack win the game, then thanks Frank for filling in for their usual chauffeur the past month. Audrey also thanks him for keeping Jack from seeing their argument and asks Frank if he can take Jack to his doctor’s appointment in the morning, which Frank says yes. Meanwhile, some scientists meet with Gianni Chellini, giving him a virus and the antidote, which he places in a safe, then tells his girlfriend, Lola, what to do with the virus, which he hands to Dimitri. That night, Audrey shows up at Frank’s house slightly drunk and attempts to seduce him but Frank talks her out of it and she thanks him for turning her down before heading home. The next day, Lola, Dimitri, and another of Gianni’s men head to the doctor’s office and kill the doctor and nurse, then take their places. When Frank and Jack get there, Lola greets them, explaining that the usual doctor and nurse have the flu, and Dimitri takes Jack into the examination room, telling Frank he can wait in the lobby. As he is waiting, Frank receives a call from Inspector Traconi, who was coming to spend a holiday in Miami with Frank and arrived early, but Frank notices something is wrong and blood coming from the closet where Gianni’s men had stuffed the bodies. Telling Traconi to take a cab to his house, Frank heads into the examination room and stops the men from giving Jack a shot. Dimitri and the other man attack Frank, who has Jack crawl through the air ducts into the other room, and Frank manages to subdue the men but when he is knocked through the doorway, Lola starts shooting at him. Frank manages to duck into the closet where Jack is hiding and use a gas tank to cause an explosion, stunning Lola and allowing them to get away. Lola accidentally shoots the other man, then tells Dimitri to get out before contacting their driver and telling him to place a bomb underneath Frank’s car. Frank and Jack leave and head back to the Billing’s house but as they get there, he is contacted by Gianni, who tells him a sniper rifle is currently trained on Jack. Frank is forced to allow Lola in the car and drive away from the house, evading the police in the process, and Lola directs him towards the harbor, where Gianni is waiting inside a boat house. After his men grab Jack, Gianni calls the Billings’ house and asks for $5 million in ransom to be delivered in 2 hours or else he will kill Jack. After hanging up, Gianni tells Frank to leave but as Frank starts to get in his car, he sees the bomb reflected in a puddle on the ground. Frank drives away, then speeds up and manages to drive up a ramp and flip the car, snagging the explosive on a nearby crane’s hook, just before Lola can detonate it. Frank contacts the Billings, where an irate Jefferson blames Frank for what happened, thinking he was in on it, but Stappleton, the agent in charge of handling the kidnapping, grabs the phone from him. Frank tries to get Stappleton to go after the boats Gianni and his men are in but Stappleton is tracking Frank’s position to arrest him so Frank leaves the phone at the harbor and drives off. Frank grabs a spare phone from his glove compartment and contacts Traconi, telling him to get out of the house but the U.S. Marshals show up and arrest him. Frank then calls Audrey, who says it is someone else when Jefferson and Stappleton look at her. Frank tells her that he isn’t involved and Audrey says she believes him, as she saw Lola’s guns pointed at him and Jack, and Frank says that there is something more than a ransom involved here and intends to find out. Frank makes his way back to the doctor’s office and copies the security footage to get a picture of Dimitri’s face. He then heads into the exam room to get the syringe but he is confronted by some police, and the syringe is broken during the fight. After subduing the men, Frank grabs an empty syringe and some water, then leaves the office. Frank then calls Traconi, who has been befriending the Marshals by cooking for them, and sends him the image of Dimitri, asking him to find out information on him. Traconi gives him Dimitri’s address and Frank heads there, catching up to Dimitri as he is trying to leave. Dimitri shoots at Frank and then runs away, with Frank chasing after him. As Dimitri manages to get away and jump onto the back of a bus, Frank follows him on a jet ski, jumping the jet ski up onto the overpass so he can get onto the bus as well. Frank grabs Dimitri and asks him about the shot, then injects him with the syringe. Dimitri panics and runs from the bus and Frank follows him. Meanwhile, Jefferson makes the ransom drop off and after several hours pass, Stappleton’s men locate Jack and Jefferson and Audrey acompany him to retrieve their son. Meanwhile, Frank follows Dimitri to the secret lab, where he demands that he be given the antidote. After Frank deals with the guards, Frank enters the lab and tells Dimitir he isn’t sick, just before he kills him, then confronts the lead scientist for the antidote, asking what the virus does. The scientist tells him, then throws the two vials of antidote out the window, forcking Frank to jump out to catch them. One of the vials breaks but Frank manages to save the other one and heads back to the Billings house. Sneaking in, he contacts Audrey and tells her about the virus, then injects Jack with the antidote so he will be safe. Frank tells Audrey to warn Jefferson that he is infected and meant to infect everyone at the conference he is speaking at, then makes his way past the Marshals to leave the house. Audrey tries calling Jefferson but the call breaks up due to his being brought in underneath the building and later, both Jefferson and Audrey collapse and are rushed to a hospital. Frank contacts Traconi, who is still at the Marshal’s office, and asks him for information on Gianni and Traconi is able to find the information but after giving it to Frank, he is caught using the computer. Meanwhile, Gianni watches the conference and sees Jefferson speaking at it, realizing his plan has worked. He then has the antidote injected into himself as a means of keeping it safe and making him invaluable to those that might try to kill him. Frank enters Gianni’s house and fights his way through all of his guards before confronting Gianni. Frank says he figured out everything but Gianni’s involvement and Gianni explains that he was hired by the drug cartels to take out Jefferson and the heads of the various anti-drug organizations. Gianni then explains that he has the antidote inside his blood stream just before Lola attacks Frank, allowing Gianni to escape. Frank ends up killing Lola, then jumps into Gianni’s Lamborghini to head to the airport to stop Gianni. Frank arrives at the airport just as Gianni is boarding his private and he races up to the plane and manages to jump onto the front landing gear before it takes off. Making his way inside the plane, Frank kills the copilot, then confronts Gianni, who attempts to shoot Frank but hits the pilot instead. Frank and Gianni end up fighting on the plane as it flies out of control before it crashes into the ocean. As the plane starts to sink, Gianni attempts to strangle Frank but Frank manages to get free then paralyzes Gianni before slipping a life vest on him and making his way to the surface, where they are picked up by a rescue boat. Some time later, Frank is at the hospital and looks into the Billings’ room, where he sees Jack playing the game with Audrey and Jefferson and realizes that they are doing fine and leaves without heading inside. Frank then takes Traconi to the airport and says goodbye to his friend before heading back to his car, where he receives a call from someone looking for a transporter.

Transporter 2 met with mixed results from the critics, holding a 51% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is, ” A stylish and more focused sequel to The Transporter, the movie is over-the-top fun for fans of the first movie.” The studio was unsure about making a follow up to The Transporter but when it was released on DVD, it showed strong enough DVD sales to warrant green-lighting a sequel. The movie fared better at the box office than it’s predecessor, earning $85.2 million off of a $32 million budget.

Some over the top action can be all you need to make an entertaining movie, and that is just what this movie delivers. The acting was good, with Jason Statham and Francois Berleand doing a good job reprising their respective roles of Frank and Traconi. Hunter Clary (Jack) and Amber Valletta (Audrey) were pretty good but I thought Matthew Modine (Jefferson) was kind of an ass, which admittedly is what he was supposed to come across as. Alessandro Gassman (Gianni), Kate Nauta (Lola), and Jason Flemyng (Dimitri) were all effective playing the bad guys and I liked Keith David as Marshal Stappleton, as he fit the profile great. The story was an improvement over the original, as it was definitely more streamlined and too the point instead of taking forever to get to the heart of the matter. The action scenes were just as good as the original while some of the fights were an improvement. The fight scene with Frank using the fire hose was pretty impressive, and funny, while I enjoyed his fight with the big bodyguard in the lab, as it showed him actually getting his butt handed to him for a good portion of the fight before he was able to actually win, and the aspect of him able to get the upper hand by taking the fight into a docked boat, where the bodyguard’s size wouldn’t be a factor. A fun movie that is a great follow up and worth watching for that mindless action fix.

Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5

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action, crime, movie, movie review, thriller

March 13th, 2018 Movie – The Transporter

the transporter

It’s always fun to watch the movie where a big name star first breaks into the role he becomes known for. Case in point, today’s movie’s role in Jason Statham’s career. Now this is not Statham’s first movie, as he was known for his roles in Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels and Snatch before this. However, today’s movie was the movie that really set him up as one of the new action movie stars of the new millennium. So let’s strap in for today’s movie, The Transporter.

The plot: Frank Martin is sitting in his customized BMW in a parking garage when an alarm sounds on his watch and he starts driving, arriving outside a bank in Nice, France. 4 robbers exit the bank with their stolen money but when they get in the car, Frank refuses to drive. He explains that the deal was for him to drive 3 people, weighing approximately 254 kilos, and the additional weight means they won’t be able to make it to their destination without increasing their chances of getting caught. In frustration, the leader shoots one of his men and the other two robbers quickly dump the body out of the car. With the police arriving, Frank starts driving and a chase ensues throughout the streets. Frank eventually evades the police and arrives at their destination, where a second car is parked. The leader offers Frank more money to drive them to their final destination but Frank refuses, referring again to his rules about altering the deal. The men get into the second car and drive off while Frank heads back to his home and cleans up his car, changing the license plates as he does. The next day, Frank is visited by Inspector Tarconi, who suspects Frank of being the driver in the heist and asks Frank if he has been in the city but without any proof, Tarconi leaves. As Tarconi drives off, Frank receives a call and heads off to meet with a new client. The men ask him to deliver a package and after getting the dimensions and weight of the package, Frank tells them his price and when they agree to the terms, he burns the information he wrote down and leaves. The next day, Frank picks up the package and starts driving but when he gets a flat, he goes to get the spare out of the trunk and notices the package moving. Changing the tire, he puts the flat back in the trunk and drives off but when he stops for some food, he buys a bottle of orange juice as he leaves. Pulling over on a hillside, he opens the bag to reveal a young Chinese woman, Lai, tied up inside and gagged with a piece of tape over her mouth. Frank makes a hole in the tape and uses a straw to give her some juice, then zips the bag back up but after driving for a few minutes, he hears her screaming in the back and stops again. Lai tells him she has to pee so he cuts her free, then ties the rope around her so he can keep tabs on her but she tries to run off. Frank chases her down and brings her back to the car only to find two police officers there investigating the seemingly abandoned vehicle. Frank subdues the two officers, then places both the officers and Lai into the trunk, chastising himself for breaking his own rule of never opening the package. Frank finally arrives at the destination and delivers the package to Darren “Wall Street” Bettencourt. Bettencourt asks if he opened the package and Frank tells him no then receives the rest of his payment for the delivery. Frank goes to leave but Bettencourt asks if he would deliver a briefcase to an address and Frank takes the briefcase and the money and leaves. Stopping for some food, Frank remembers the two police men in his trunk and goes to get them some sodas but as he walks back to his car, it suddenly explodes. Realizing he had been set up to die, Frank returns to Bettencourt’s house and after kicking in the door, begins fighting with several of his men. After killing some and knocking out the others, Frank steals one of Bettencourt’s cars and drives off. As he is making his way back home, Frank notices Lai, who had used the confusion of Frank’s attack to escape and hide in the car, and he quickly stops and removes Lai from the car but before he goes too far, he goes back and picks her up. Frank takes Lai to his home and asks her a couple of questions then gives Lai some food before heading off to bed. After eating, Lai decides to look around Frank’s house and finds a box with some old pictures of him before lying down on the couch and getting some sleep herself. Meanwhile, Bettencourt goes to the hospital to check on his men and learns that Frank is still alive, then kills the man so he can’t tell the police what he knows. The next morning, Frank finds that Lai has cooked him some breakfast and as she goes to get some milk that was the delivered, she finds Traconi outside. Traconi comes in and shows Frank the remains of his license plate and Frank asks about the rest of his car, saying it was stolen when he went out earlier. Frank talks to him a little longer and then leaves and Frank complains to Lai about her interrupting his quiet life when a missile suddenly strikes his home. As Bettencourt’s men begin shooting up the house and firing more missiles at it, Frank grabs LAi and they head down the the cellar, where he has a secret opening to the sea below. Jumping into the water, Frank dives down to get some scuba gear he has stashed down for emergencies and after giving a set to Lai, they swim to safety. Emerging in a safe house, Frank starts complaining again about everything that has happened to him when Lai silences him by having sex with him, saying it is her way of apologizing. Later, they talk to Traconi about what happened to Frank’s house, saying they have no idea why someone would blow it up, but as Frank leaves his office, Lai gets on his computer and looks up information on Bettencourt. After leaving the station, Frank wants to go his own way but Lai tells him that her family and other Chinese people are being shipped here on a container. Frank thinks she is playing him but she tells him it is true, as were her feelings for him, and Frank agrees to go with her. They sneak into Bettencourt’s office and confront him but Lai’s father arrives and after a standoff, Lai is captured and Frank is subdued and then knocked unconscious. Traconi and some officers arrive and Bettencourt explains that Frank kidnapped Lai and tried to blackmail him so Traconi arrests Frank. When Frank regains consciousness, Traconi talks to him in his cell and Frank tells him about Bettencourt and Lai’s father being human traffickers. Traconi says he will start an investigation into the matter and jokes that Frank could probably resolve the matter quicker, then leaves the cell open, allowing Frank to escape. Frank takes Traconi “hostage” and makes his way to the docks, where Frank gets on a boat and Traconi helps him cast off. Arriving on the docks, Frank goes looking for the containers with people but Bettencourt already has them loaded onto trucks and preparing to move out. When Frank is spotted, Bettencourt has the trucks leave, then fights with Frank briefly before letting his men deal with him. Frank begins fighting with Bettencourt’s men, eventually making it into a bus depot, where he spills oil onto the floor and and covers himself with oil to make it harder for the men to grab onto him. When some of Bettencourt’s men begin shooting at him, Frank uses one of the men as a shield and dives into the water, making his escape. Stealing a car, Frank goes after the trucks but when the car breaks down, he spots a plane spraying crops nearby and convinces the pilot to help him. Flying to where the trucks are, Frank tells the pilot to contact Traconi, then parachutes out of the plane and onto the truck. Frank knocks the driver out of the truck and takes the wheel but is shot at by Bettencourt and Lai’s father. Bettencourt manages to get onto the truck and after fighting with Frank in the cab, knocks him out of the truck but Frank manages to hold onto the undercarriage. Lai’s father starts shooting at him but Lai grabs him, throwing off his name, while Frank throws a tire iron at the driver, knocking him out and causing the car to swerve off the road. Frank manages to get back into the cab and kills Bettencourt, then pulls the truck over but he is confronted by Lai. Lai has Frank move to the edge of a cliff, preparing to kill him but Lai shoots her father, killing him, just as Traconi and the police arrive and they head to the truck and open the container, releasing the people trapped inside.

The Transporter met with mixed reviews from the critics, holding a 56% rating in Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is, “The Transporter delivers the action at the expense of coherent storytelling.” Jason Statham did most of his own stunts as well as most of the driving during the car chase scenes. He even learned how to hot-wire a car for one scene, which he jokingly says he could have used the knowledge when he was 15. The movie was a modest success, earning $43.9 million off of a $24 million budget and would spawn 2 sequels as well as a TV series and a reboot.

This is just what you need to start your day; a dose of adrenaline-fueled, mindless action that doesn’t need to focus on the plot. The acting was pretty good, with Jason Statham doing a great job in his role as Frank, the no nonsense transporter. I also liked Matt Schulze (Bettencourt) and Qi Shu (Lai), while Francois Berleand made for a subtle bit of comic humor as Traconi. The story was fairly straight forward but did have a couple of plot holes in it. One of the biggest ones that I would love to hear the explanation for is how Lai got into the car, as she was still tied to a chair. The car chase at the beginning of the movie was a nice way to kick off the movie, though I will admit that some of the stunts do seem a little unbelievable, while the fight scenes were well coordinated, though they did tend to make Frank into an unbeatable machine way more than they should have. I mean, it’s fine to have Frank win the fight but you should at least have him get his ass kicked for part of the fight so that it is a little more believable. Still, this is some mindless entertainment that is worth watching.

Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5

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crime, drama, movie, movie review, thriller

February 20th, 2018 Movie – The Ticket Of Leave Man

the ticket of a leave man

Ahh, a nice little Tod Slaughter movie is a good way to start the day. This is another movie from the Legends of Horror box set and another one that I have never seen before. I have to admit that the Tod Slaughter movies I have seen in this box set have all been pretty entertaining and I really am interested in seeing some more of his films once I finish all of the ones in this set. But that is a story for another day, so let’s get on with today’s movie, The Ticket Of Leave Man.

The plot: In 1930’s England, Detective Hawkshaw and some other officers arrive at the house of a wealthy family and Hawkshaw tells the patrolman outside the house to keep a look out for anything suspicious, as a thief known as The Tiger is planning to rob the place. Hearing a scream coming from the house, Hawkshaw leads some of his men inside, leaving the patrolman and another detective to keep watch. Meanwhile, The Tiger sneaks out of the house and strangles the patrolman, then clubs the detective over the head several times before running off. Hawkshaw and the other detectives hear the commotion and race outside to find the bodies and Hawkshaw vows to catch The Tiger. The next day, Hawkshaw meets with some of his men at a public garden and, under the guise of having some drinks, discuss the case while keeping an eye on the people there. They especially keep an eye on Melter Moss sitting at a far table, as he is a money lender who also doubles as a fence for stolen merchandise. Meanwhile, The Tiger shows up and sits with Moss, who is nervous about them being seen out in the open together. The Tiger says he is considering getting out of the game, as the pressure has been increasing and Hawkshaw is making things more difficult. After watching an incident where most of the waitstaff complaining to the manager about a coworker being a former convict (referred to as a Ticket of Leave Man), the man begs to be given a chance as he is trying to go straight but the manager fires him, The Tiger and the money lender watch May Edwards start singing and The Tiger becomes infatuated with her. After May finishes her set, The Tiger starts to approach her but stops when he sees her fiance, Robert Brierly, approach her and they sit down to start talking. The Tiger sits back down with the money lender and plans to frame Robert and have him arrested, then seduce May while he is gone. The Tiger has the lender give him some fake bank notes and as Robert is listening to May sing, he starts a conversation with Robert and uses it to slip the fake notes into Robert’s jacket while taking the envelope of real ones out. The former convict notices this as he is leaving and attempts to tell the manager but he refuses to listen and tells the man to leave. The Tiger convinces Robert to buy some cigars, then disappears as Robert is completing the purchase. Meanwhile, the lender is speaking with Hawkshaw and tells him that Robert is passing around counterfeit money and Hawkshaw approaches the cigar shop and asks to see the money Robert paid with. As The Tiger and the lender watch the proceedings, the former convict approaches them and says he saw what they did and wants half of the money, and The Tiger tells him to step into the alcove so they can discuss the matter. Hawkshaw approaches the table and arrests Robert for forgery when they hear someone cry out and, leaving Robert under the care of two officers, he goes to investigate and finds the former convict has been killed. When Hawkshaw says The Tiger has been there, a panic ensues and May ends up fainting, only to be carried out of the garden by The Tiger, to help him escape. Some time later, the money lender is revealed to be the actual forger and The Tiger meets him at his shop and they discuss their next plan. After several years, The Tiger sets himself up as a charitable foundation and has people donate money to him, which he uses to determine their wealth and rob them or kill them if necessary. He also controls the various criminals in the area, forcing those that attempt to go straight into becoming criminals for him by reporting to their bosses that they are Ticket of Leave Men. The Tiger is planning to commit a massive robbery and is trying to find a man to place inside when he is visited by May. The Tiger sends the lender away and greets May and kisses her, which shocks May, and when The Tiger says he wants to proceed further with her, she refuses as she is still in love with Robert and plans to be with him when he gets out of prison. Robert is released from prison and given a 10 pound note as his earnings from the workshop while incarcerated. He heads off to see May, who is living with Mrs. Willoughby and her grandson Sam, who owned the cigar shop Robert had bought the cigars from. May introduces Robert as her brother who had been in the military and Robert learns that the Willoughby’s lost their cigar shop because of the incident that got him arrested. Meanwhile, The Tiger approaches the bank owned by Joshua Gibson and tries to see if there are any openings there, explaining that his foundation tries to find jobs for Ticket of Leave Men to help them get back on their feet but the manager says that they can’t risk it due to the amount of money they keep there. At the Willoughby’s home, Mrs. Willoughby is worried about being able to pay their rent, as she is short on the money, when they find a note on the table with Robert’s money inside, which he secretly left for them saying it was to pay off an old debt. Outside, Robert and May meet Mr. Gibson, who was going there to collect the rent, and Gibson offers Robert a job but warns him that he expects honesty and says that if anyone is caught lying, they will immediately be fired without exception and Robert, reluctantly, continues the charade of being May’s brother. As time passes, Robert proves himself to Gibson, who gives him a promotion at work to being his personal clerk. When a messenger delivers a letter saying that they have lost some money due to forged bills, Gibson tasks Robert into tracking down the man who used the forged bills and getting their money back. Gibson and the other tellers leave as May enters the building and she talks with Robert, who feels bad for continuing to lie to Gibson and wants to come clean. The two share a kiss but unknown to them, The Tiger had stopped by and sees them. After May leaves, The Tiger enters and goes looking for a loan while talking with Robert and Robert recognizes the company name that The Tiger gives as the one that had used the forged bills. The Tiger leaves and returns to his business, where he speaks with Moss about Robert working for Gibson. The Tiger wants to send Robert back to prison so he can seduce May but Moss says they should use him to rob Gibson before that and The Tiger agrees. Robert had contacted Gibson about The Tiger, who contacted Hawkshaw to arrange a sting. When Hawkshaw arrives, Robert is nervous when Hawkshaw appears to recognize him and questions Gibson about him but Gibson assures Hawkshaw that Robert has been a trustworthy employee. Gibson leaves to take a deposit to the bank as The Tiger and Moss approach the building. The Tiger has Moss go inside to see if it is safe before he enters and Moss notices Hawkshaw and tries to leave but he is stopped by Gibson, after Hawkshaw says he could be trouble. The Tiger enters and Moss secretly passes him a note warning him about Hawkshaw just as Hawkshaw approaches and invites The Tiger into Gibson’s office. Inside, The Tiger says he discovered the forged notes had been used and had come there to pay the debts occurred as a result of them, playing off that he is innocent in the matter. Robert returns to the office to find Hawkshaw and Gibson talking and Gibson explains that The Tiger was caught off guard by the forgery and repaid the debt in full. When Robert enters Gibson’s office, he finds The Tiger trying to open the safe with a key and questions him about it but The Tiger, revealing he knows Robert’s real name, tells Robert that he will reveal the truth to Gibson unless Robert keeps quiet. When Gibson enters the room, Robert says he has something to tell him in private after he concludes his business with The Tiger. After Robert leaves, The Tiger tells Gibson the truth about Robert and says he saw Robert making a wax impression of the safe key. Gibson doesn’t believe him at first but when Robert enters and Gibson calls him Brierly, Robert admits that he is Brierly. He tries to explain himself but Gibson accuses him of trying to rob the place and orders him to leave before he calls the police. Later, May goes to see The Tiger, telling him that Robert lost his job and she is worried that he might become a criminal. The Tiger tells her to have Robert meet him at the garden and after she leaves, he has one of his men go fetch some supplies, then proceeds to start trashing his office. Moss sees him and questions what he is doing and The Tiger replies that after he robs Gibson, he will have enough money to do what he wants and no longer has to put up the charade. Moss threatens to tell Hawkshaw if The Tiger double crosses him and The Tiger kills him, then continues to ransack the office as his employee returns. The Tiger then sets the office on fire, then locks his employee inside with Moss’ body to be burned alive. At the garden, Robert is lamenting about being unable to find a job because he is a Ticket of Leave Man and May tells him not to give up before leaving to perform. The Tiger sits at the table and starts talking with Robert and convinces him to help him steal the money from Gibson’s safe and Robert agrees, telling him he will leave a note for May explaining that he is leaving her. He hands the note to the waiter to give to May but the waiter is a disguised Hawkshaw and the note actually tells her to contact Hawkshaw and explain that Gibson’s building is going to be robbed. When Robert and The Tiger enter the building, The Tiger reveals his true identity to Robert, who says he had contacted the police but plans to get his revenge himself. The two fight outside and The Tiger starts to strangle Robert but is interrupted by the arrival of Hawkshaw and the police. The Tiger pulls out a gun and threatens to shoot whoever approaches him but he slips into an open grave and breaks his neck. As Robert comes too, he apologizes to Gibson for lying and had hoped to pay back the kindness he shown him by stopping the robbery.

This was a really good movie, though it could only marginally be considered meeting the criteria for being in the Legends of Horror box set. The acting was really good, with Tod Slaughter putting in his usual over the top brilliant performance as The Tiger. I also liked John Warwick (Robert) and Robert Adir (Hawkshaw) but thought Frank Cochran was great as Moss but Marjorie Taylor (May) was kind of bland. The story was pretty good and I liked the idea of how The Tiger was basically taking advantage of other criminals to further his own greed, forcing them to continue being crooks even if they wanted to go straight. The mood and tone of this movie are pretty good and definitely helped sell the narrative of the story. Definitely something worth watching a credit to Slaughter’s career.

Rating: 4 out of 5

 

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crime, dark comedy, horror, movie, movie review

January 12th, 2018 Movie – Otis

otis

Well, we have about another week’s worth of movies that I got over Christmas and I am hoping that they keep getting better. Today’s movie is one that my friend Mark gave me. When my friend’s buy me movies, they tend to help feed my love for the completely cheesy, campy variety of movie. Mark will go along with that too but he also tends to buy me movies that are interesting or usually get better reviews than some other movies (though he did get me the Leprechaun 4-pack of movies so he is not completely without faults in this regard). Anyways, today’s movie is one of his picks and one I am looking forward to watching so let’s get started with Otis.

The plot: As an alarm wakes up a young girl named Kim, she is called by Otis, the man who has kidnapped her and has her chained in the room. Otis taunts her about what will happen that night, torturing her to get the responses he wants but Kim eventually yells at him and hangs up the phone. She then proceeds to cover up the camera’s Otis uses to watch her before going to hang herself. Otis races down to stop her only to find Kim had tricked him and she had actually pulled the chain free from the floor and uses it as a weapon to attack him. Otis tries to stop her and during the struggle, Kim falls into a bathtub and is electrocuted when a lamp falls into the water. Otis unplugs the lamp and after yelling about the 6 weeks wasted on her, he proceeds to saw her body into pieces. Some time later, Will and Kate Larson are talking about daily life while watching the news, where the Larson family is pleading for their daughter’s safe return, though the news anchor says she is most likely the latest victim of the serial killer. Meanwhile, their daughter Riley is dancing in her room in her underwear, when she notices someone watching her from the bushes outside her window. Heading out there, she discovers her brother Reed and his friend had been videotaping her and she quickly grabs the camera and takes it inside to show her parents. Sitting across from Reed, Will asks Reed what his problem is, as this is the latest in a string of incidents that he has done. When the doorbell rings announcing their food is there, Riley goes to get it and pays the delivery man, who happens to be Otis. Otis gives Riley the pizza and after she leaves, he smells the money she gave him, and a light shines on him as he has found his next victim. The next day, Will and Kate get onto Reed again about his grades and his antics at school, and he tries to deflect attention onto Riley before he leaves. Riley leaves to go to school when she is confronted by Otis, who quickly shoves a sack her into a sack and places her in his car, then knocks her out to keep her from screaming before driving away just as Riley’s parents leave the house. Riley comes too and finds herself chained to a bed and when the phone rings, she begs for help only to find it is Otis on the other end, who calls her Kim. Riley yells at him and tries to find a way out but Otis tortures her by turning the lights in the room super bright, burning her, and keeps telling her to say her name is Kim. That evening, Reed comes home to find his parents talking to a police officer and they question him about the fact that he put up pictures of Riley on the internet. Will receives a phone call from Otis, who tells him that he is dating his daughter Kim and asks for his permission to take her to prom, and says that if he plays along, his daughter will be returned to him, shocking everyone there. The next day, Otis talks to Riley, who discovers that she has been dressed in a cheerleader’s uniform, and when she refuses to say what he wants, he enters the room and yells at her to play along. Back at the Lawson’s house, the FBI are setting up to monitor any calls coming into the house so they can track the killer, informing Will and Kate that there have been 5 victims now, but Reed is more concerned that they are tearing up his room and computer than he is for his sister’s safety. Back in his lair, Otis is dressed in a football uniform and asks Riley to cheer for him when a sensor goes off and he quickly takes her back to her room and chains her to the floor, warning her to keep quiet. Otis then heads outside and is confronted by his brother Elmo, who yells at him for being late to work and the condition of their parent’s old house. When Otis asks about Kim, Elmo yells at him some more, saying Kim want’s nothing to do with him as his obsession with her has her freaked out when she caught him licking her underwear. Heading inside the house, Elmo stops when he notices a box containing his pictures of him in his football uniform and gets upset at the coach for never playing him, then chastises Otis again before leaving. That night, Otis calls the Lawson’s house again, this time talking with Kate, and the FBI attempts to trace the call. Reed tries to tell his dad that they won’t be able to save Riley, as they were unable to save the previous girls, but Will tells him to let them do their job, as they are all unaware that Otis was calling from right outside their house. Otis continues to go on pretend dates with Riley while her family continues to worry. When Otis calls the Lawson’s house again and tells Kate that he plans on having sex with Kim, Kate starts yelling out at him, surprising Reed with her venom, before Otis hangs up and Kate worries about what will happen to Riley. In his lair, Otis, calls Riley and asks if she is ready for prom, and she replies that she is and has her dressed picked out, saying everything Otis wants to hear. Otis has turned his garage into a makeshift prom and starts dancing with Riley, then puts her into the car and starts kissing her. Trying to keep from being raped, Riley tries to please Otis by giving him a hand job but when Otis ejaculates prematurely, he freaks out and drags her back into her room, and knocks her out, then leaves. As Otis heads outside, locking the shed that he keeps Riley in, he is confronted by Elmo, who asks what Otis is doing and proceeds to verbally abuse him. Meanwhile, Riley comes too and, realizing that Otis did not secure the chain to the floor, works on trying to escape. Riley uses the underwire from her bra to short out the electrified grate covering the air duct and proceeds to climb out through it and manages to escape as Elmo continues to berate Otis. Back at the Lawson’s house, they are all getting pissed off at Agent Hotchkiss, who is being too cavalier about the situation. As they talk outside, they get a call from Riley, who tells them she escaped and tells them who kidnapped her and where she was being held. Kate tells Riley to lock herself in the bathroom of the supermarket that she is at, as she will be sending an ambulance to pick her up, and then tells Riley not to repeat what she told them. After hanging up the phone, they are approached by Hotchkiss, who asks what is going on and they tell him that Riley had just called them and is okay. The Lawsons head to the hospital to see Riley before the doctor asks to speak with them. As they leave the room, Hotchkiss tries to question Riley about her kidnapper but she doesn’t tell him anything. Meanwhile, the doctor tells the Lawsons that Riley had suffered some head trauma and the hemorrhaging could cause some paralysis. That night, Will wants to let the police deal with Otis but Kate and Reed want to take justice into their own hands and convince Will to go along with them. They head to Otis’ house and wait for him to come home so they can attack him. Elmo shows up, bringing some groceries for Otis to eat and the Lawsons, mistaking him for Otis, proceed to attack him and knock him out. They then take Elmo to the garage and proceed to torture and beat him, with Will reluctantly helping them but when Kate says that Riley could be pregnant with Otis’ kid, Will gets into it. Back at the hospital, Hotchkiss is sitting in Riley’s room and when Riley wakes up, he questions her again and Riley tells him Otis’ name. Hotchkiss calls the Lawsons and tells them that Riley gave him a description of Otis and they realize that they have been torturing the wrong man. When they discover that Elmo is dead, they freak out and figure out what to do, eventually deciding to dump the body in a dumpster. When Otis returns home, he finds the mess in the garage and after trying to figure out what happened, he watches the feed from his video cameras and sees what they did to Elmo. At the hospital, Riley wakes up to find her family there and as she notices their guilty expressions, realizes they went after Otis themselves but doesn’t say anything when Hotchkiss shows up. Hotchkiss asks to speak with the Lawsons and tells them that they found Otis’ lair and how he had motion activated cameras that captured everything. As the Lawsons start feeling nervous, prompting Kate and Reed to pull out a knife and throwing star respectively. They are temporarily relieved when Hotchkiss says they cameras were facing the wrong way so they couldn’t see anything but they had the audio. Hotchkiss then says that he doesn’t plan on turning them in, only wishing that he could have gotten a piece of Otis himself. When Riley is brought home, she questions them about what happened and they admit that they killed Elmo by mistake, which horrifies Riley. As they argue about what they should do, Reed goes to get a shotgun and makes plans to kill Otis, placing an order for a pizza but Riley tells him that Otis never raped her. When the pizza gets there, Reed fires the shotgun repeatedly through the door but when the door falls off the hinges, Riley tells them that the delivery guy isn’t Otis.

This was a pretty good movie but there were some aspects that reminded me of a couple of other dark comedy’s I have watched. The acting was pretty good, with Daniel Stern (Will) and Illena Douglas (Kate) playing off each other very well as parents. I also felt that Jere Burns was rather creepy in his portrayal of FBI Agent Hotchkiss while Ashley Johnson (Riley), Jared Kusnitz (Reed), and Bostin Christopher (Otis) all did great jobs in their roles. The story was pretty good, with Otis basically reliving the glory days he felt his brother should have had, as well as living out his fantasy with his longtime crush Kim. The second half of the story, where the Lawsons decide to get some vigilante justice, was a little disturbing, but did have some humor to it to try and make it a little less gruesome. The only thing that I didn’t like was the lack of a real ending, as Otis basically just disappears and nothing else really comes of the whole situation except for Reed mistakenly killing someone else. The special effects were ok but the big thing was the dialogue, which really helped telling the story in this movie. This is a good movie and definitely well worth watching if you are a horror fan.

Rating: 4 out of 5

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crime, movie, movie review, mystery, thriller

December 27th, 2017 Movie – Taking Lives (2004)

taking lives

The year is almost over and I am finishing things with a new letter. Now when it comes to this movie, this one kind of falls into a category that some other movies fell into at the beginning of the century; that being movies which used Angelina Jolie as their main marketing ploy. I understand the reasoning, as most of these movies are geared towards the male audience and she is one of the more attractive females in Hollywood. Still, the tactic can only get people to consider the movie but the actual movie itself has to do it’s job in keeping the audience interested. Let’s see if that pans out with today’s movie, Taking Lives.

The plot: In St. Jovite, Canada in 1983, a teenager named Martin Asher buys a bus ticket out of town and ends up meeting another teenage drifter named Matt Soulsby. When the bus breaks down, Matt rents a car and he and Matt continue driving down the road, with Matt telling Martin why he is on the road. When the car gets a flat tire, Matt goes to change it but Martin comments on them being the same height and when Matt looks up in confusion, Martin kicks Matt into the path of an oncoming car. The car hits Matt and ends up wrecking, killing the driver, and Martin approaches Matt, who is barely alive, and proceeds to bash in his head with a rock before grabbing Matt’s belongings and walking away through the fields. 19 years later, in Montreal, a construction crew is doing some excavating on a site when they unearth a human body that was buried there. At the same time, a woman hurriedly locates a police officer and explains that she saw her son, who had been dead for 19 years. The woman is taken to the police station and she gives her statement, saying that her son is dangerous but she knows it was him. The Montreal police take her statement but are more concerned with capturing a serial killer that has been in the area. Chief Inspector Hugo Leclair calls in FBI profiler Illeana Scott to assist with the case, introducing her to detectives Joseph Paquette and Emil Duval, though Paquette is not happy with her being there. When another murder occurs, Illeana is taken to the station where James Costa, a witness to the crime, is describing what he saw. As James works on sketching a profile of the man he saw, Illeana questions him about what he saw. The police get a hit on James’ sketch and head to the suspect’s apartment, where Illeana discovers a body chained up in the rafters. Paquette gets an ID on the victim and Illeana says not to mention anything to the press, as she hopes the killer will get upset over the lack of media coverage and make a mistake. That night, Illeana is at a bar close to James’ apartment and speaks with him when he comes in. The next day, Illeana goes to speak with Rebecca Asher about her son and while there, learns that Rebecca has two sons but one of them had died and Rebecca feels that Martin killed his brother. As Illeana continues to search the house, she finds a hidden room where Martin was kept as a child but as she looks around, she is attacked by an unknown assailant, who manages to escape. As she is relaxing in a bath, Illeana gets a call from Duval about a break-in at James’ studio and as she is looking at the file, notices something about the victims. She then explains her theory to the police that the killer is Martin, who is stealing the victim’s identities and living their lives until he finds someone with a better life for him and she believes James is the Martin’s next target. They decide to fit James with a wire and try to use him as bait to lure out Martin but nothing happens and James refuses to cooperate further as he fears for his own life. Illeana finds herself being drawn closer to James and she wants to leave, telling Leclair that they have a witness and a working profile so there is no need for her to be there but Leclair convinces her to stay until they catch Martin. That night, James holds an exhibit for his paintings and while there, he sees a man staring at him. James catches Illeana’s eye and says that the man is the killer and Illeana and Paquette give chase when he runs but they end up losing him in the festival crowd that is on the streets. The next day, they go to place James into witness protection but as Duval is packing James’ things into the car, the killer appears in James’ apartment and begins attacking him, saying that James has something he wants. James tries to get away and grab a gun but the killer knocks the gun away but James is able to yell for help, sending Duval rushing back inside the apartment. Meanwhile, Illeana arrives at the apartment to say goodbye to James when she hears gunshots coming from the apartment. When she gets there, she sees Duval lying dead on the ground but no sign of James or the assailant. Hearing James yelling for help outside, she sees James being held at gunpoint and being forced to drive away and so she gets into her car and gives chase. James eventually crashes his car into a median, which sends the attacker crashing through the windshield. James crawls out and quickly grabs the gun and begins wildly firing it into the car in the hopes of killing his attacker but his shots end up catching the car on fire just as Illeana gets there and she quickly pushes him to safety so he can avoid the blast. James is taken to the hospital to get his injuries taken care of and afterwards, he heads to Illeana’s hotel room, where the two give in to their mutual attraction and end up having sex. The next morning, Illeana wakes up to find herself and James covered in blood and at first she thinks he is dead but when he rouses, they discover that his stitches had popped. Illeana takes James to the hospital to get his stitches redone and learns that Rebecca is there to identify the body so she heads down to the morgue to meet Leclair and Paquette. Rebecca looks at the body but doesn’t say that it is Martin and walks away. Illeana chases after her but is unable to catch Rebecca before she gets on the elevator and the door closes. Inside the elevator, Rebecca hears someone say “Hello, Mother” and she turns to find James in the elevator with her. Rebecca recognizes him as Martin and speaks with him, saying she isn’t afraid of him but James moves towards her and kills her. Illeana had raced down the stairs to catch Rebecca as she leaves but when the elevator doors open, she sees James ripping Rebecca’s head off and realizes that he is Martin. She is able to tell Leclair and Paquette about James before she faints but they are unable to stop him from escaping. The police search James’ studio and Paquette yells at Leclair over Illeana’s sleeping with James and slaps Illeana in his anger. Meanwhile, Martin heads to the train station and picks out his next victim, throwing him off the train as it is moving. Martin then calls Illeana and speaks with her, telling her that she didn’t fall in love with James Costa but instead, fell in love with Martin Asher. The police discover he bought a train ticket and head out to try and catch him when he reaches the station while Illeana heads back to her hotel and proceeds to cleanse herself to the point of rubbing her skin raw in an act of disgust over her actions. Illeana is fired from the FBI for her actions and she ends up moving to Carlisle, PA, where seven months have passed and she is shown to be heavily pregnant. After running some errands, she returns home and puts her things away but as she goes to pull her tea kettle off of the stove, she finds Martin in her house. She goes for a gun she had hidden only to find that Martin had found all of the guns she had hidden throughout the house and taken them. Martin talks with her some but then attacks her when she says the babies are not his, but James Costa’s. Illeana grabs a pair of scissors to try and attack Martin with but Martin grabs her and then stabs her in the stomach with the scissors. Illeana is shocked that he did that but then grabs the scissors and stabs Martin in the chest with them. As he drops to his knees in shock, Illeana explains that everything he saw was what she wanted him to see, then removes the prosthetic stomach she was wearing to simulate being pregnant. As Martin drops dead onto the floor, Illeana calls Leclair and tells him that it is over.

Taking Lives was panned by the critics, holding a 22% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is, “A stylish, but predictable thriller where the only thrills are offered by the sensuous Angelina Jolie.” Despite having third billing in the movie, Kiefer Sutherland only had a total of 17 lines and 3 minutes of screen time. The movie was barely a hit at the box office, earning $65.4 million off of a $45 million budget.

This was an ok thriller but it was too slow paced to really be effective. The acting was good, with Angelina Jolie and Ethan Hawke doing good jobs in their roles of Illeana and Martin respectively. The story was actually pretty interesting but, as I said earlier, the slow pacing actually kind of killed some of the tension that it had going for it. I also felt that the ending was about as cliched and predictable as you could expect it to be. The dark lighting and tones of the movie worked well together and did their job in helping to carry the story. It is predictable but still a decent movie to kill some time with.

Rating: 3 out of 5

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adventure, crime, drama, movie, movie review

December 22nd, 2017 Movie – Swamp Women

swamp women

Just when you thought we were getting out of the swamp, another movie pulls us back in. Today’s movie is an early work from Roger Corman, and one of the movies that gave him the nickname “King of the B-Movies.” I remember seeing this on MST3K years ago and thinking that it was just terrible. I ended up owning this movie when I bought a box set of Roger Corman movies a few years ago. Let’s see how bad it is without Joel and the bots cracking jokes during it as I watch today’s movie, Swamp Women.

The plot: In New Orleans, a geologist named Bob Matthews is wandering around Mardi Gras with his friend Marie and tells her about a plot of land he is testing for oil out in the swamp. The two encounter a pickpocket named Charlie and Bob manages to catch him and turn him over to police to be booked. As Charlie is being booked, Lt. Lee Hampton is talking with Captain J.R. Goodrich about the missing diamond from a heist. Goodrich decides to send Lee undercover into prison, where she is supposed to get close to the women who stole the diamonds and go with them when they escape, in the hopes they will lead her to the diamonds. Inside the prison, Lee is made roommates with the diamond robbers, Josie Nardo, Vera, and Billie, and tells them she knows how to get out of the prison and has someone leaving a car for her. She will take them with her if they give her a cut of the diamonds. Wanting to get out of prison, the three women decide to go along with the plan and after climbing over the fence, they find the car just where Lee said it would be. As Lee is driving away, Josie is giving her directions to where they stashed some clothes and weapons and then they head out into the swamp to retrieve the diamonds only to have their boat spring a leak on them. Suddenly, they see a boat, with Bob, Marie, and a driver inside, heading towards them and they flag it down. When Vera tries to force them out of the boat, she ends up shooting the driver but before she can kill the others, Lee stops her and wrestles the gun from her. After Bob and Marie are taken out of the boat, Vera attacks Lee before Josie breaks it up and asks Lee why she stopped Vera from killing them. Lee says that they could be useful in case they run into trouble and Josie agrees to the idea. As they make their way down the swamp, Vera continues to pick fights with Lee, while Billie starts flirting with Bob. As they make camp for the night, the girls start talking about what they will do with their shares of the diamonds. At some point during the night, Billie attempts to seduce Bob but Vera grabs her and the two start fighting until Josie breaks them up. The next morning, Marie attempts to steal the boat but when Josie spots her and shoots at her, she ends up falling into the water. Lee jumps in to try and save her and Bob convinces Josie to free his hands so that he can help but they are too late as an alligator ends up eating her. When they make camp for the night, Lee secretly approaches Bob to check on him and he tells her he knows she isn’t like the others and kisses her but Lee pushes him away quickly as Vera approaches. After they keep making their way through the swamp, they eventually reach the spot where the diamonds are buried and Josie, Vera, and Billie quickly hop out of the boat to dig them up. Lee checks on Bob, then heads over to help and they soon find the chest and Josie shoots off the lock. Vera and Billie end up fighting over the diamonds and Josie breaks it up, threatening to kill them both if they don’t get it together. After making camp for the night, Vera quietly grabs the guns from the other girls while they are sleeping and then grabs the diamonds. She then approaches Bob and convinces him to go with her, threatening to shoot him if he refuses, and they quietly leave camp. When the others wake up and discover their guns and the diamonds are missing, Josie is curious about why Vera didn’t take the boat and figures that Vera wants them to follow after her so she can kill them. They eventually find Vera perched in a tree, with Bob tied up to the base of it, and Josie comes up with a plan. Fashioning a spear to use, Josie has Lee and Billie distract Vera, allowing her to throw the spear at Vera. As the girls distract Vera, a rattlesnake approaches Bob and threatens to bite him. Vera sees the snake and goes to shoot it when she is struck by the spear but she still manages to kill the snake before falling dead from the tree. The girls grab Bob and the diamonds and continue making their way out of the swamp, Josie starts getting suspicious of Lee’s refusal to kill anyone and decides to test her by telling her to kill Bob, with Billie agreeing with Josie. When Lee argues she doesn’t want to use a gun as it would attract attention, Josie pulls out her knife and plans to kill Bob but Lee begins fighting with her. Billie attempts to shoot Lee but Bob slams into her, throwing off her shot. Lee and Bob manage to knock out the two crooks and embrace and as a police boat shows up, Bob says he will stand by her side as they approach it.

Wow, this really is a bad movie. The acting was incredibly stiff and honestly pretty bad all around. The story was pretty basic but the execution of it just seemed to jump around all over the place. The lighting was pretty annoying as I know some aspects were supposed to be in the night but it was still daylight. The fight scenes between the women were pretty poorly choreographed to be honest and some of the other effects felt lacking. I did think the interjecting of wildlife footage, such as the alligators and birds in the swamp, was actually pretty good, but the scene with the rattlesnake next to Bob looked incredibly fake when compared to the footage of the snake on it’s own. I love Corman films but even I have to admit that this is one better watched while it is being “riffed”.

Rating: 1 1/2 out of 5

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comedy, crime, movie, movie review, mystery

December 8th, 2017 Movie – Super Troopers

super troopers

Ahh, a fun movie to start the day with. In 2001, a movie came out that would soon become an instant classic in the comedy world. Now I honestly didn’t get a chance to see it when it came out in theaters but after hearing several friends talking about it, I decided I had to rent it. When I first watched it, I will admit that I didn’t get all of the appeal and thought it was just another in a line of stupid comedies. However, after watching it a couple of more times, as well as some of the other Broken Lizard movies, It started to grow on me so I ended up buying a copy. So let’s have a few laughs with today’s movie, Super Troopers.

The plot: Near the Canadian border of Vermont, 3 kids are smoking pot while driving down the highway when they notice a State Patrol car next to them. They quickly have one of the guys eat the pot, as well as some shrooms one guy had on him, then throw a second bag of pot out the window as they start to pull over. When the patrol car speeds by with it’s sirens flashing, the guys start laughing at their good fortune only to be shocked when the patrol car appears behind them. Trooper Arcot “Thorny” Ramathorn and rookie Trooper Robert “Rabbit” Roto exit their car and question the kids then quickly leave in their car, only to go in reverse and go back behind them. As they start to bust the three kids for possession, a car speeds by yelling at them so the two troopers throw the kids in the back of their car and take off after the man. The speeder passes by another patrol car, taking out the head of the dummy that Trooper Jeff Foster had in his car, then gets off the highway and heads into a bar. The three troopers follow after him only to realize that it was Trooper MacIntyre “Mac” Womac pulling a prank on them. Mac teases the guys for falling for his prank, then puts his disguise back on and leaves the bar, shooting his gun in the air before getting in the patrol car the three guys are in and taking off. Later that day, the troopers are informed by their C.O., Captain John O’Hagen, that their station is being under consideration to be shut down so they need to cut back on the pranks and try to get along with the local police department. Meanwhile, Trooper Rodney “Rod” Farva, is constantly trying to prank Rabbit, as he is upset that he is under suspension for getting in a fight with some school kids during a traffic stop. When a murder occurs in a winnebago on a deserted highway, the Highway Patrol and local PD get in a fist fight over who is taking the case, which causes the Highway Patrol to look even worse. As the two law enforcement agencies continue to mess with each other at a kids little league game, Foster attempts to hit on Officer Ursula Hanson, the local PD radio operator who wants to get out in the field. The next day, Mac and Foster pull over a semi when it fails to pull into the weigh station but as they head into the trailer to inspect the cargo, the driver locks them inside. They are eventually let out by Thorny and Rabbit, who discover that the truck was carrying 150 kilos of marijuana. At the station, O’Hagen asks about the driver and they tell him that he was using a fake name and that the company is also fake. Rabbit comments on how the John Chimpo sticker on the bales of marijuana is the same as a tattoo the dead woman in the winnebago had and suggest they might be related so O’Hagen says he will talk to Chief Grady about taking over the investigation but Grady mocks his theory and refuses to turn it over. The mayor shows up as the newspaper is taking photos and tells them that the governor will be stopping by the town on her way to Burlington later in the week. Thorny and Rabbit pull over a German couple driving a Porsche only to learn that it is stolen so the arrest the couple. Later that night, Rabbit decides to go for a joyride in the stolen car only to get pulled over and arrested by Mac and an off duty Farva. As a result, Farva’s suspension is lifted and he is partnered with Thorny while Rabbit is stuck on radio dispatch. Meanwhile, Foster continues hitting on Ursula and they eventually decide to have sex in the winnebago but while they do, the bed breaks and they discover some more bricks of marijuana with the John Chimpo sticker on them. Foster takes the bricks to his station and while O’Hagen doesn’t believe his story on how he found them, agrees to talk to Grady again about taking over the investigation. O’Hagen tells Mac and Foster to go check the truck stops for information but they are unable to get any info on the mystery driver. Meanwhile, Farva gets into an altercation with some fast food workers and is arrested. As the local PD haze him, Grady speaks with Farva about coming to work with him after the Highway Patrol is shut down, asking him about how their drug bust is going but Farva refuses. Later, O’Hagen gets upset at the position Farva’s incident placed them in and says they are most likely going to be shut down unless some miracle occurs. Meanwhile, Foster and Ursula are continuing to see each other in secret and Ursula comes up with a way to help Foster save the station by getting the marijuana hidden in the winnebago and bringing it to the function that the Governor will be at. Foster and Thorny go get the winnebago while Rabbit distracts the cops but when they get there, they find that Grady has shown up with the drugs while they have bags full of cardboard. Foster confronts Ursula about what happened and she denies having anything to do with the trick, then tazes him when he suggests she was sleeping with Grady. That night, O’Hagen and the other troopers all get drunk and discover that Farva was the one who ratted them out and taken a job as a local cop. The 5 troopers gang up on Farva and strip him of his uniform, then steal his patrol car and proceed to have some fun. Foster contacts Ursula over the radio to apologize and she tells him a way to get back at the guys. When they go to where Ursula said to meet them, they see the truck driver pass by them and they start to follow only to be stopped by Farva. Farva plans to arrest them all but they convince him to go with them and see what is going on. When they get there, they find the truck driver meeting with the pilot of a small plane that flew in from Canada. When they see Grady and the other officers arrive at the scene, Farva gets upset at them and heads off to meet with Grady, but after he leaves, Thorny and the others see that Grady and the officers are in on the drug smuggling. Ursula arrives and tells them she knew about the drug smuggling but couldn’t do anything about it. Using some flares and a blow-up doll from Farva’s car, the troopers cause a distraction that saves Farva life, then take down the drug dealers and crooked cops. After the dust settles, the Highway Patrol is commended for bringing down the smuggling ring but their station is still shut down. A few months later, Thorny and Rabbit deliver a keg to a house party being thrown by the three kids they harassed. As the kids mess with them, thinking they are no longer cops, they take off their delivery uniforms to reveal that they, and the others are now serving as the local Spurbury police department.

Super Troopers didn’t fare well with the critics, only scoring a 35% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is, “A more-miss -than-hit affair, Super Troopers will most likely appeal to those looking for something silly.” The “bullet-proof cup” scene was filmed outside an actual prison, with the prisoners pressed against the fence yelling at Steve Lemme as he was standing there in just a cup. The movie was a big hit at the box office, earning $23.1 million off of a $1.2 million budget, and after a crowdfunding effort, a sequel has been produced to be released in 2018.

This isn’t the best comedy work but it is a really funny movie. The acting was good, with all of the Broken Lizard troupe turning in a great performance, while Brian Cox (O’Hagen) was surprisingly funny with his character. The basic premise of the movie was honestly a little unoriginal, as it was the basic goofball group clashing with the “authority” regime. Wow the basic premise was unoriginal, the story was pretty good as they added their own unique twist to it. The comedy was a mixture of slapstick, play-on-words, and some general adult humor but it all blended together pretty well. I did think it was funny that the couple that Farva said “chicken fucker” too was actually Kevin Hefferman’s parents. A funny movie that is well worth watching.

Rating: 4 out of 5

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