30.9.13

Black Sunday.

Bava is a legend.  And this movie, about an undead witch (played by Barbara Steele) coming back to do bad shit, was a damn good one from what I can gather.  The movie starts with Barbara Steele being executed for being a witch, and as they hammer a devil mask to her face and kill her, she tells them that she will return, armed with the power of Satan to KILL THEM ALL.  So, this ain’t no fake witch.  She’s a straight up evil woman.

[...]

Starkwell: Music in movies was so much damn better back then.

[...]

Bava’s a real pro, and it shows IMMEDIATELY.  The production is fantastic.  The cinematography looks genius, and the sets look absolutely mystical and terrifying.

[...]

Lovelock: So much fog!  How did they do that?

Starkwell: By actually caring about how the movie looks.  Something modern day film makers should learn.

[...]

[Two main characters, doctors, ask their carriage driver to take a shortcut through the HAUNTED WOODS.]

Starkwell: Pretty dumb for a couple of "doctors".

Lovelock: Rational science is about to FAIL YOU!  GHOSTS ARE REAL!

Starkwell: Wait… you mean in this movie, or… ?

[...]

Then the two doctors go into a crypt that they stumble upon, and therein find the Witch’s Tomb.  While fighting with a seriously awesome looking fake bat, the doctor breaks the cross that sits above the witch’s tomb.  Then he takes off her mask.  Then he accidentally feeds her a couple of drops of blood after cutting his hand on the glass.

[...]

[The Princess appears to them, and she has two big fucking dogs with her.]

Starkwell: How did the doctor manage to do THREE accidental things that could potentially lead to the re-animation of the satanic witch?

Lovelock: Blind luck?

Starkwell: Doctor Whateverhisfuckingnameis?  More like Mr. Magoo.

[...]

[The younger of the two doctors is clearly smitten with the princess.]

Starkwell: Quite possibly the two dumbest doctors in the history of medicine.

Lovelock: Mr. Magoo and his sidekick, Boner MD.

[...]

The shots of the witch corpse are utterly horrifying, crawling with worms, maggots and oozing black tar of some kind.  It’s both effective, and creepy as balls.  So Barbara Steele plays the present day Princess, living at the mansion with her brother and father.  I assume this also means that she is a descendent of the witch from the beginning of the film.

[...]

[Young girl goes through the woods to get to the barn to milk the cow.]

Lovelock: Talk about a shitty mom.  Sending her daughter out, in a storm, through the creepy woods, NEXT TO A CEMETERY, to milk a cow.  In the middle of the night.  Who keeps their cow there?

Starkwell: Those shots following the girl through the woods are amazing.  I’m actually kind of scared.

Lovelock: That’s because you’re a fucking pussy.

[Creepy Witch Corpse starts talking, telling dead people to “RISE”.]

Lovelock: Well, shit, now I’m scared.

[...]

Then a devil-masked zombie rises from the grave, and Lovelock and Starkwell high-fived and started doing roundhouse kicks and playing air guitar.  It’s amazing that they didn’t break anything.  I should add that the zombie has a shirt with a shiny winged dragon on it.

[...]

[Dr. Magoo follows zombie dude into the crypt, where he then witnesses the witch RISE.]

Starkwell: There he goes, blindly following again!  Good ol’ Magoo!

Lovelock: Maybe she’s going to grant him three wishes for freeing her?

Starkwell: You’re thinking of a genie, and no, I don’t think that’s about to happen.

Lovelock: You ain’t never had a friend like me.

[Dr. Magoo makes out with the corpse, dies and becomes a zombie.  The witch, however, is fully awake now, and continues to order around her zombie horde (currently consisting of two zombies).]

Starkwell: A whole new world.

Lovelock: Don’t you dare close your eyes.

[...]

The plan seems to be to get the witch into the Princess body, and then she can be all alive and sexy again.  Walk around, kill people, get revenge, etc.  Later that afternoon, Dr. Boner finally wakes up from his hangover and realizes that Dr. Magoo is gone, and goes off to find him at the castle.

[...]

[Princess Katia faints into Dr. Boner’s arms and he carries her to his room, staring at her breasts, pretty much the whole time.]

Starkwell: Boner MD certainly is handsy.

Lovelock: Can you blame him?  Barabara Steele is stunning.

[...]

Zombie Magoo botches an attempt to kidnap Katia for the Witch, and it only further drives her into the arms of Boner MD, much to his delight I’m sure.  Anyways, Boner and the Prince and the Priest continue to investigate and get to the bottom of what is happening.  After a few choice deaths, an exorcism, some zombie on zombie action, and an incredible burning corpse scene, Katia is brought before the witch.

[...]

[Shiny Dragon Shirt Zombie tears her shirt off.]

Starkwell: Did the witch really need for her undergarment to be exposed to complete the ritual?

Lovelock: Probably not.  Bava likely just wanted to see them boobies shake.

[...]

Well, Boner shows up just in the knick of time to save Katia from the witch, but he fails to really do anything, because he sees the witch and she looks at him with her captivating eyes, and he goes all "boner" and just sits there spellbound.  And Katia looks dead.  Thankfully, a mob of townspeople show up and set the witch on fire and Katia comes back and immediately makes out with Boner MD like crazy.  Fucking awesome.

28.9.13

Total Retribution.

A fairly low budget, straight-to-video film attempting a sci-fi story involving space undead, is not likely to deliver on everything that it promises.  The fact that I couldn’t find positive reviews doesn’t help the promise all that much.  Not to mention that director Andrew Bellware seems to have spent the bulk of his career, thus far, directing horrible mockbusters.  “Total Retribution” instead of “Recall”?  Not to mention his follow-up “Prometheus Trap”.  Holy cow.  How many people fall for that shit?  And so, without any further ado, Starkwell and Lovelock are stuck watching this mutha’.

[...]

[Woman floats through the sky?  Wakes up in a desert.]

Starkwell: Might be the worst green screens I’ve ever seen.

Lovelock: Waking up naked and confused?  Only Milla Jovovich can pull that shit off.

Starkwell: Pretty bad ‘Jawa’ rip-off too.

[Shots of… space station?]

Starkwell: The bad effects have just been taken up a notch.

Lovelock: And what’s with the young British girl voice for the computer?  That’s another "Resident Evil" Rip-Off!

Starkwell: Yeah, if you’re ripping shit off from THOSE movies, you’re already in a heap of trouble.

[Naked girl runs into a survivor asking her to “KILL ME! PLEASE!]

Lovelock: Aw! And now we’re stealing from “Alien”?

Starkwell: Super lame.

[...]

So now we cut to some lame “squad” consisting of two people going around making sure everyone’s head is blown.  The acting is bad, the dialogue worse, the story atrocious, and the special effects are well… as bad as the fight choreography.  At this point, Starkwell and Lovelock just want the creepy redhead to put some fucking clothes on.

[...]

[Naked Redhead is… a robot?]

Lovelock: So what?  “Blade Runner” now?

[...]

Then a character in the movie was talking about the pain he is feeling as the virus takes over his body and says “I just wish it would end soon!”  At the exact same time, without skipping a beat, both Lovelock and Starkwell said “I know what you mean.”  Not a good sign at only fifteen minutes into a ninety-ish minute turd.

[...]

Starkwell: I can’t.

Lovelock: Me neither.

[...]

Sometime after the redhead finally put some clothes on, which, from what I can tell, consisted of bicycle shorts, a tube top, and some knee pads, Starkwell and Lovelock both left, unable to deal with this piece of mega-shit.  Eventually half-naked redhead gets herself a duster and they bring it full circle with the “Matrix”.  Also there is time travel I think.  Oh man, this was a bad one.

26.9.13

The Night of the Sorcerers.

I’m not gonna lie, I’ve been looking forward to this one for a while.  I’ve wanted to see this bizarre Ossorio pic, but more importantly, I’ve been SERIOUSLY excited to watch Starkwell and Lovelock watch it.  His “Blind Dead” films were definitely a mixed bag, so this really could go in any direction, and will likely go in all directions at once.  Voodoo zombies beheading women, who, in turn, come back as some form of bloodsucking undead peoples?  SIGN US UP.

[...]

[Film starts immediately with some kind of tribal dance ceremony.]

Starkwell: I don’t think I’ve ever seen a film look quite this bad.

Lovelock: It’s grainy AND has a purple tint.

Starkwell: Also, how fucking long is this dance scene going to last?

[Tribe takes out a euro woman prisoner, and start whipping her.]

Starkwell: Obviously they whip her shirt right off.

Lovelock: Well, it is an Ossorio film, so I’m assuming they may cut her bare breasts with a sword pretty soon.

[They take the bare-chested prisoner and lay her out on a rock and eventually, the naked ladies of the tribe chop her head off and rub blood all over themselves.]

Starkwell: Different.

Lovelock: I’ll allow it.

[...]

The ceremony was rudely interrupted by a bunch of white dudes who look like they are out hunting lions.  They shoot a bunch of the natives.  Then it cuts to the present day (I didn’t realize it wasn’t the present day before) and a bunch of euro researchers show up near the village and start setting up camp.  They’re trying to find out what is happening to all of the elephants... I think.

[...]

Starkwell: So… two dudes and what look to be underwear models are researchers camping out in Africa?

Lovelock: You wouldn’t understand.  The elephants are disappearing, and they needed to send their best team.

Starkwell: Underwear models?

Lovelock: Spain is very sophisticated.

[...]

Apparently the natives are only dangerous when there is a full moon.  There seems to be a mixing of werewolf, vampire and zombie folklore... Then randomly some local creepy dude walks up and says he “heard of their arrival”.  I’m not sure where he came from, or how he ‘heard’ about them coming, especially since there doesn’t seem to be ANYTHING around them.

[...]

Starkwell: Wait, why is she walking around with her shirt off?

Lovelock: Clearly so that they can hump near the… lake?

[Cuts immediately to ‘girl in bra brushing hair’.]

Starkwell: Obviously.

[...]

[Voodoo Zombie rises out of his rock grave.]

Lovelock: It must have sucked for that stunt man to be covered in all those rocks.

[Stupid girl wanders off on her own to… take pictures of stuff… in the middle of the night.]

Lovelock: Well, I like where this is heading.

[...]

Then there’s basically a repeat of the initial scene from the beginning, except without the dancing, the natives are zombies now, and the one doing the whipping is the undead girl who was BEING whipped the beginning.

[...]

Lovelock: Recipe for spreading the zombie love: Step one, whip her until her boobs pop out, step two, chop off her head, step three, dance and rub blood on face and breasts.

Starkwell: Or, recipe for a movie that sucks.

Lovelock: Also, is that cheap leopard print shit they are wearing supposed to be actual cheetah fur?

Starkwell: Probably.  You didn’t notice they keep showing cheetah stock footage?

[...]

Then at one point it cut to a pair of really fake cheetah heads watching them through the bushes.  But, the PIECE DE RESISTANCE was when the original undead girl and the newly undeaded girl from the night before frolic in the woods together in leopard print loin cloths.  IN SLOW MOTION.  Whispering to each other telepathically.  This was what sent Lovelock and Starkwell to the floor laughing.

[...]

[Frolicking leopard print bikini girls drown a guy in his dark room in the little water bath.]

Starkwell: Why are they talking like that?  Why are they smiling like that?

Lovelock: I think it’s those fake vampire teeth… they look mad uncomfortable.

Starkwell: Why drown a guy when you have those sweet teeth?

[The girls grab one of the other girls from the camp and return to the woods.  Whispering.  In slow motion.]

[...]

Nothing has really happened yet, and from what Starkwell and Lovelock can gather, this film exists mostly as an excuse for Ossorio to film girls running around in bras and panties through the forest.  There is only one regular girl left at this point.  The other three are leopard print bikini wearing frolicking bloodsuckers.

[...]

[Some dude gets all rapey with the surviving girl.]

Starkwell: Seriously Amando?  Every damn time!

[Girl grabs a knife and stabs the aggressor.]

Lovelock: A TWIST!

Starkwell: An incomplete rape and a clear lack of breast cutting?  This is certainly a departure for the Spanish director.

[...]

Then the dude who was killed in his dark room rises up as a zombie and goes after Survivor Girl, but she sets him on fire.  And it’s actually a pretty sweet stunt.  Lovelock did a full spin followed by eight or nine karate chops.  She wanders off into the woods and encounters her two friends, recently turned into bloodsuckers.

[...]

[DOUBLE FROLICKING IN SLOW MOTION!]

Lovelock: So are the zombies making them their bikinis?  Where is all the cheetah fur coming from exactly?

[...]

After that it gets more confusing.  I think Survivor Girl cut one of the bouncing bloodsucker’s throats… but then the zombies caught her… but then her boyfriend shows up and throws gun powder in the fire and rescues her… but then, as they drive away… SHE IS A BLOODSUCKER!!!!  And then it flashes “The End” and the DVD player immediately turns off.  Lovelock and Starkwell don’t know exactly what just happened, but they’re pretty sure they’d rather not see it again, maybe ever.

[...]

Starkwell: So… what happened to the elephants?

Lovelock: Yeah, if anything I’d think that the cheetahs would be the animal that was disappearing, given all the bikinis the zombies have been crafting.

20.9.13

FILM FEST: Zombie Apocalypse - Double the Mediocrity.

When someone says "cookie cutter zombie film", if anyone ever actually says that (okay, I say it, so I guess what I meant was "When I say "cookie cutter zombie film""), they are (I am) talking about shit like this.  And in this case, they made TWO movies.  How cookie cutter is it?  We've already watched TWO other movies called "Zombie Apocalypse".  So what better way to destroy Lovelock and Starkwell's hopes and dreams, then this crap?  It's gonna be a long night.

[...]

[ Zombie Apocalypse (2010). ]

If the movie looks half as cheesy as the DVD menu, they are in for one hell of a shitshow.

[...]

[Some guy beats on another guy and the dialogue is horrible and sounds horribly overdubbed.]

Starkwell: Come on… another one of … what is that music?

[Guy who is tied up kicks a zombie onto the ground.]

Lovelock:  I agree that this looks terrible, but I think that stunt double really must have gotten a concussion from that fall.  It looked horrifying.  I give the film some points for that.

[...]

The intro is full of stock footage from news broadcasts.  It looks bad man.  Bad.  And then we are introduced to some characters that are in… college?  They look EASILY thirty five.

[...]

[Girl sits in a pool of "blood".]

Starkwell: Wateriest blood ever.

Lovelock: Looks like watered down fruit punch Gatorade.

[...]

[Chunky Goth Girl gets fired from her video store job.]

Lovelock: I miss good video stores.

Starkwell: I miss good videos.

[...]

This movie is complete nonsense.  For example, the two main guys stop in the middle of a street and out of nowhere a girl runs into the shot and is like "Hey, I heard your tires screech!".  Between that, the bad dialogue and the shitty acting and the shitty special effects… Starkwell called it quits twenty minutes into the first film.  Lovelock is in it for the long haul… and what a long haul it is going to be…

[...]

Lovelock: The movie looks like a cheap film from the early nineties.  I don't know how it is even possible that it's only a year or two old.

[...]

Lovleock: Holy shit, we get it, you liked "Agent Smith" in the "Matrix" films.  Fuuuuuuuuuuck you.

[...]

Then there was "everyone grab weapon" scene that was somehow even lamer than most of them are.

[...]

[Girl asks for a cigarette as they go to fight zombies, claiming "now seems like a good time to start smoking."]

Lovelock: Seriously?  Now is like the worst time to start smoking.  Plus she's all chunky, so running must already be hard.

[Harsh.]

[...]

The main characters get captured by some kind of militia.  Each person is a terrible clichĂ©.  There's GUY IN GAS MASK, Cowboy Guy, Bow and Arrow guy, and of course, ARMY FATIGUES.  Considering the outbreak has been going on for a couple of hours AT MOST, it's even dumber than usual that there would already be a group of bandits operating as some sort of army, acting like they've been together for years.

[...]

Lovelock: Wait… when did that guy cut his hair?  And why does his accent keep changing?  Why BOTHER with fake accents when no one can act?  Why do these FUCKING movies always make that mistake?

[...]

Anyways, Lovelock obviously hates it, and is REALLY working hard to not to leave.  He manages to stay awake until the end of this one, we'll see what happens during part two… It looks like the kind of thing where if you KNEW the people that made this thing, you'd still hate it, but at least have fun laughing at it.  For everyone else, it manages to escape even the "SO BAD IT'S GOOD" territory.

[...]

Lovelock: Wait a bit before you start the next one.  I have to go do a serious dump.  I think it was brought on by the last ninety minutes.

[...]

[ Zombie Apocalypse: Redemption (2011). ]

You got to hand it to the film makers in that, they had the balls to make not one, but two of these… and somehow get Fred Williamson to be in the second one.  But sometimes less is more.  Or, as Starkwell would say, sometimes none is more.  Starkwell came back into the room as this one starts up though, just so you know.

[...]

[Opening music, very synth heavy.]

Starkwell: While I can appreciate the vibe they are going for, I can't help but feel like they are about to disappoint me.

Lovelock: Clearly this opening music is going to be the high point.

[They're not lying, it's very Gianni Rossi inspired.]

[...]

The budget looks considerably higher for this one, at least initially.  We are treated to a nice scene of a dude stranded in a desert, pissing on his own bandana to keep himself cool… ?  Or hydrated?  He is eventually found by three random people who rescue him, and then it cuts to some sort of Mad Maxian society, where they have put some dude on trial for treason, and they set him on fire.

[...]

[Fred Williamson is the leader of the crew that saved desert dude.]

Lovelock: His name is Moses?

Starkwell:  Like Black Moses?

Lovelock: That is racist, dude.

Starkwell: No, I meant like Isaac Hayes...

Lovelock: Too soon, dude.  Too soon...

[...]

It's pretty clear that they are going for that whole fake grindhouse thing.  It CAN work, but often doesn't.  Fred Williamson is helping make it almost work in this case.  The main character is named KNOX.  He's wanted by the Evil Mad Max Society People.  Good thing he was rescued by the Seemingly Good Society of Wandering Weenies.

[...]

Starkwell: Good LORD the sound mixing is BAD.

[...]

I understand, as I said, what they are going for… but we could ALL do without the long pauses between EVERY line of dialogue.  Surprisingly the acting is decent, definitely "cheesy on purpose" but it works.

[...]

Starkwell: LEAPS AND BOUNDS over the first movie, I must say.

Lovelock: So you like it?

Starkwell: No.  Very much no.

[...]

The film quality is giving both guys a headache… half of the screen is always blurry.  It's like one of those fucking Instagram options.

[...]

Lovelock: When I survive the zombie apocalypse, remind me to NOT be one of those douchey looking guys wearing hockey equipment.

Starkwell: Deal.

[...]

Cheesy and pretty stupid, still, there's something likeable about the characters.  Not enough to save this film, but enough that Starkwell hasn't left yet.

[...]

[Knox sits out looking at the stars.]

Lovelock: I have that same damn lawn chair.

[Knox and Sarah get close and cuddly.]

Starkwell: Obviously.

Lovelock: I think I want the apocalypse to come... seems like it's way easier to hook up with girls.

[...]

Starkwell: Zombies eating a baby? Really?

Lovelock: Actually pretty gross.

Starkwell: What are the odds that a pregnant zombie woman and man would have survived in an abandoned warehouse, all alone in a room in the back, and then had the baby, turned to zombies, BUT THE BABY DIDN'T, and then they begun eating said non-zombie newborn EXACTLY when Knox and Fake Kurt Russell happened to get there?

Lovelock: Pretty good I guess, since it just happened.

Starkwell: Wrong.  The odds are terrible.  Worse than terrible.  They are the worst odds of all time.

Lovelock: So what you're saying is that they beat the odds.

Starkwell: What? No. Fuck off.

Lovelock: Against all odds...

[Then Lovelock went into a five minute venting session about the importance of consistency with regards to the zombies in these films, because ALL OF A SUDDEN the zombies were running.]

[...]

Then both Starkwell and Lovelock laughed for five minutes when the "raiders" showed up at the good guy camp because of, well, a few things that happened.  The "raiders" knocked down the good guy gate with grappling hooks, even though it clearly wasn't even being held up by anything.  Also Lovelock is pretty sure that the "stunt men" were hitting each other with Nerf bats.  And then to top it all off, Fred Williamson randomly strikes karate poses.

[...]

Starkwell: Fred Williamson karate beats guns?

Lovelock: Fred Williamson karate beats anything you got.

[Then Fred Williamson gets a minigun and it's way lamer than the karate moves.]

[...]

Anyways a few montage type sequences go by, and one dude is trying WAY TOO HARD to look like Kurt Russell Snake.  But I guess three of the main dudes are going on a rescue mission.  Then they rescue them and blow up the bad guy headquarters, which is actually a huge church.  Lovelock and Starkwell seem mostly, well, just bored.  And that, as they say, is that.  There's even a Princess Leia strangling Jabba reference near the end.  Trying WAY TOO HARD, and totally out of place.  Fred Williamson disappears halfway through the movie too… BUT THEN MAKES A COMEBACK AFTER THE CREDITS!  I assume it's because they only had him for a day.

[...]

Lovelock: Did they make a third one?  Can we not ever watch never ever?

[...]

So yeah, not really a glowing review.  Redemption was an improvement, but the film makers have MILES to go.

14.9.13

The Bay.

With zombies being all the rage, it’s only a matter of time before more “serious” directors start throwing their hat in the genre ring.  Much like with comic book movies, eventually the market will saturate, even with the big names in the mix, the mockbusters will cease, and we can get back to people making zombie movies for all the right reasons.  Until that day comes, we’ve got to keep hoping that some of the major zombie productions might hold up against the real classics.  “Wag the Dog” is one of Starkwell’s favorite movies, so let’s see how Levinson does in this setting, facing two of the genre’s toughest (not really) critics.

[...]

[Stock footage of dead aquatic creatures washing up on the bay shore.]

Starkwell: Wait, this is a found footage movie?

Lovelock: You just figured that out?  Real Rain Man, dude...

Starkwell: Dude.

[...]

The story slowly starts off with a talking head shot of a girl explaining what happened that day in Anytown Maryland.  It was a festival of some kind, and she narrates as they show a bunch of cheap looking digital footage that people have submitted.  I’m assuming something bad will start happening soon.

[...]

[News footage of two scientists that were found dead in the bay, from “shark” bites.]

StarkwellThe production budget looks… well… are we sure this is THE Barry Levinson?

Lovelock: We’re gonna need a bigger boat.

Starkwell: No.

Lovelock: GooOOOOooood MORNING VIETNAaaaaaAAAaaam...

Starkwell: I guess.

[...]

There was a whole conspiracy involving the mayor and his dumping of chicken shit into the bay.  The mayor seems sketchy.  There was a whole water treatment thing, that clearly isn’t gonna have worked as intended.  Lovelock said “better be zombies.

[...]

[HELL starts breaking loose, people start getting sick, vomiting and breaking out into hives and disgusting bubbly sores.]

Starkwell: Ew.  Fucking, ew.

Lovelock: That’s why I only drink bottled water.

Starkwell: That’s just not true.

Lovelock: That’s why I don’t go to Maryland?

Starkwell: Sure, I guess.

[...]

The film is a bit schizophrenic in its approach to found footage.  It is a mix of talking head shots, random people’s home videos, doctor cameras video taping patients, COPS style ride along videos, iPhone FACETIME… a bit of everything.  It keeps t interesting, but Lovelock really wants more shit to happen.

[...]

Lovelock: What is this a flu epidemic?  Make with the zombies, yo.

[...]

Apparently someone was found dead with their guts torn out.  So Lovelock is even more at the edge of his seat waiting.  Starkwell likes the building of the tension.

[...]

[Weird creature crawls out of a fish mouth and bites a fisherman.]

Starkwell: Well that’s different.

[Lovelock threw up the muffin he was eating.]

[...]

Seriously though, there are a lot of fish gut shots.

[...]

[Two teenagers jump into the bay and get… eaten?  By… piranhas?]

Lovelock: Zombie fish?  Fucking… let’s fucking go already.

Starkwell: Patience.

Lovelock: You’re patience.

Starkwell: What?

[...]

All joking aside, this is moving pretty slow.

[...]

Lovelock: Yeah, we get it.  There’s bacteria in the water.  GO SOMEWHERE WITH IT.

Starkwell: I hate to agree with you but…

[...]

We are just past the halfway mark, and what we know is what we knew in the first five minutes.  The mayor/chickenfarmer has been dumping chicken poo and pee into the bay and the water is fucked.  What ISN’T CLEAR is if there is going to ever be anything more than puking people with blisters.

[...]

Lovelock: This shit looks CHEAP.

[Honestly, it does sometime look like something you could put beside shit like “V/H/S”.  Weird since Levinson IS an Oscar winner after all.]

[...]

Then we get to HEAR some pretty crazy shit through “ENHANCED AUDIO”.  It’s a neat and cheap way to have crazy shit go down without having to spend the effort to actually film it.  I believe it was Starkwell that shouted “LAZY”.

[...]

[They repeat a bunch of the footage from earlier.]

Starkwell: Really?  We’re THAT dumb that we don’t get it yet?  I need to have it read back to me like I’m some kind of child?

Lovelock: I’m still concerned that it’s not about zombie zombies.

Starkwell: Is that all that matters?

Lovelock: Dude, isn’t it?

[...]

Anyways, the whole town dies, and then the government covers it up.  Zombie movie?  Not really.  Infected?  Kind of.  Any good?  Basically, no.

10.9.13

Gangsters, Guns and Zombies.

I already know how Starkwell and Lovelock feel about the recent onslaught of zombie comedies.  So, this recent UK flick is basically in trouble before it even starts.  Saying that it has received mixed reviews is probably being kind.  This film was released around the same time as “Cockneys vs. Zombies” which is also about a British gang of bank robbers.  Not sure who ripped who off, but I’m fairly certain both of them try and lift shit from “Reservoir Dogs” and/or “Lock, Stock”, but with acting and dialogue that is not as good.  We are immediately introduced to all of the main characters, who are on their first “job” robbing a bank, when there seems to be a zombie outbreak going on while they try and get Danny some help (he’s been shot).

[...]

[Boss Man Tony shoots a man in the head, then a girl gets eaten, then he shoots the girl and the guy who ate her.]

Lovelock: It’s refreshing to see a newer movie employ old fashioned special effects instead of garbage CGI.

Starkwell: Shows a lot of heart.

[...]

It’s clear that the outbreak has been going on for a while, since no one seems shocked by the zombies.  Or people were prepared for it I guess?  It’s a bit of a plothole at this point, but maybe they’ll explain it later.

[...]

[The gang gets to the hospital to get Danny some help and kill a bunch of zombies.]

Starkwell: Are they going to flash words on the screen before every scene?  “THE HOSPITAL”… I mean… yeah we can see that.

[A minute later it flashes “THE SAFEHOUSE”.]

Starkwell: Well now, that was a quick ‘hospital’ scene.

Lovelock: Yeah, the word introductions are lame.

[...]

Neither Lovelock nor Starkwell, nor myself for that matter really see any actual story yet, other than lifting a lot of ideas from either Guy Ritchie or Quentin Tarantino.

[...]

Lovelock: The girl getting eaten by zombie clowns was a nice touch.

Starkwell: Touch of pointless.

[...]

Twenty minutes in, and it’s just been dudes driving in a van while showing random shots of zombie action.  Oh sure, they got out for a minute at the hospital, but then ran IMMEDIATELY back in when they were swarmed.

[...]

[Danny dies, so they finally leave the van to busy him, and have a mini funeral in the woods.]

Lovelock: What a nice group of gangsters.  Is Pat crying?

[They are suddenly swarmed by zombies… wearing old fashioned armor… ?]

Starkwell: Wait, did they travel back in time or something?

Lovelock: That’s no van, it’s a TIME MACHINE.

Starkwell: No, it’s a just a van.

Lovelock: Yeah I know.  I was just trying to make it more interesting.  We’re hitting the forty minute mark and thirty five of those have been DRIVING THE FUCKING VAN.

Starkwell: LARPERS.  Must have been some serious zombie larpers.

[...]

We’ve gotten no back story on the characters, no character development DURING the film so far.  So really, it’s just random British dudes in a van.  But it’s well filmed and the zombie and gore stuff look fun.

[...]

Starkwell: It has become far too trendy for films to just have a shitload of characters and not develop any of them.  It doesn’t take talent to write a lot of characters into a story.  It takes talent to make them RELEVANT to the story.

Lovelock: Agreed.  This writing appears lazy to me.

[...]

Well, they meet an old bag and her hot granddaughter, and stay hauled up in their… windmill?

[...]

Lovelock: Nice to see them get out of the van.

[Immediate love connection between main guy ‘Q’ and the granddaughter.]

Starkwell: Obviously.

[Still no sign of a character that we actually give a turd about, but there ARE some decent jokes in the mix.  But then the grandmother charges the zombies and curses.]

Lovelock: Cursing granny?  So played.

[...]

Starkwell: They’re driving again?

Lovelock: At least it ain’t in the van.

[...]

With fifteen minutes left, NOTHING HAS HAPPENED.  Oh wait, they just spent like five minutes building a campfire.  So there’s that.  I haven’t seen Lovelock and Starkwell yawn this much in a long time.

[...]

[‘Q’ and granddaughter cuddle ‘round the campfire like soulmates.]

Starkwell: Right.

Lovelock: If only it were that easy.

Starkwell: Well, to be fair, it’s not that easy surviving on the run in a zombie outbreak.

Lovelock: Whatever dude.  It usually takes longer than a day to work up to that kind of cuddling.  ESPECIALLY in a zombie outbreak.

[...]

Then the movie ends as the surviving gang members and granddaughter escape the UK in a boat.  And ‘Q’ and granddaughter make out like crazy.  So… it took an hour and a half for nothing to happen.  Well, at least it ends with a blooper reel.  Who doesn’t love that.

[...]

Starkwell: I don’t.  I don’t love that.

7.9.13

War of the Dead.

It’s hard to imagine that Nazi Zombie Movies is an actual thing, but it is.  This is the most recent one that I know of, along with the “Outpost” sequel.  This one looks to be more an homage to the Nazi Zombie films of the late nineteen seventies and early eighties, than a nod to pure excess (“Dead Snow”) or a flat out tale of pure horror (the “Outpost” movies)… But still, it appears to be sort of doing its own thing, in that this one actually takes PLACE during the war, as opposed to being about a group of unlucky souls unearthing ancient undead Nazis.  I, for one, am excited to see what happens.

[...]

[Captured soldier is tortured by the Nazis with some sort of experimental injection of black tar shit.]

Starkwell: Ok… you had me at hello.

[Captured soldier’s eyes go white (a.k.a. zombie).]

Lovelock: You had me at hello indeed.

[...]

Americans and Finnish soldiers wander through the forest in search of an old Soviet bunker that they want to destroy.

[...]

[Good guys are ambushed.]

Lovelock: Decent gun effects.

Starkwell: The flashes of black and white are cheesy, and totally unnecessary.

Lovelock: You’re cheesy and unnecessary.

[...]

A chunk of the Finnish and American dudes survive, but then they meet up with ZOMBIES!  I guess if you want to play semantics, technically the zombies are not Nazis, they are undead RUSSIANs that are helping the Nazis by eating people and not dying.  They are the Nazi’s zombies, not Nazi zombies.  But seriously?  Same fucking thing.

[...]

[They try and hide in a cabin, but the “28 Days Later” style zombies swarm the cabin and bite the shit out of a bunch of the dudes.]

Lovelock: Not shy on the death count.

Starkwell: Yeah, they’re not fucking around.  Since they aren’t making much of a point to develop any characters, we can assume that at any time, anyone can go.

Lovelock: Sounds good to me.

Starkwell: The main character is ‘war’ I guess.

[...]

Solid action so far and an awful lot of fun to watch.  Starkwell and Lovelock can often be saying things like “woah” and “boom” or “there it is” or “shovel-kill!!!!!”.  Yes, there was a shovel kill.

[...]

Starkwell: So, what exactly is their mission?

Lovelock: Entertaining the audience, I assume.

[...]

Eventually the soldiers find the lab where the anti-death research was being done.  Very creepy.  The film moves fast, and, while light on character, still manages to make you root for the good guy soldiers.  I guess the easiest way to make people root for characters is to have them fighting Nazis.  It definitely helped Indiana Jones be even more awesome.

[...]

[Guy has to kill his wife.]

Starkwell: Are you crying?

Lovelock: Yeah, tears of GO FUCK YOURSELF.

[...]

The rest of the movie played out and there wasn’t much that Lovelock or Starkwell said that was worth documenting.  I think at the end one of them, or both of them actually, said “what a blast”.  But I don’t if they were only saying that because of all of the explosions or because they really had fun.  It ends on a cliffhanger that actually made them both laugh, but mostly because the movie’s final line of dialogue was cheesy as balls.  Do I smell a sequel?  Probably not ever going to happen.

4.9.13

Neither the Sea Nor the Sand.

Also known as "The Exorcism of Hugh", "Neither the Sea Nor the Sand" has a nice DVD release from 'Redemption'.  This time around we seem to have been spared the random naked lesbian vampire sequence that usually starts up with one of that company's DVD releases.  Instead, we get the menu and music accompanying it that would not sound out of place on an early episode of "Sesame Street" in one of those sequences where we learn about bottle factories or something.  This further confuses Lovelock and Starkwell as to what the film will be about.  I'm also concerned about the nearly two hour running time.

[...]

Starkwell: What's this movie supposed to be about?

Lovelock: I know two things it isn't about.

Starkwell: Please don't.

Lovelock: Neither the sea nor the sand.

Starkwell: You're an idiot.

[Movie opens up with a girl on the beach.]

Lovelock: Wait a minute… sea and sand?  Talk about false advertising.  This should have been called "Lots of Sea and Sand, totally right off the bat".

[...]

So there's this girl, and she seems to be out gallivanting with a lighthouse keeper.  She's got a husband back home though.  I don't get it.  She's SUPPOSED to be heading back home, but decides to stay behind, I assume to bang the lighthouse keeper, a dude named Hugh.

[...]

[Hugh's older brother raised him.  They live together in the house.]

Starkwell: So the older brother cooks for them, starts them a fire, cleans up, and she bangs HUGH?

Lovelock: Well did you hear how grumpy the older brother was?  No thank you!

[Then there's a big sex montage, full of skin, orgasm faces and nipple nuzzling.]

Lovelock: You're a married woman!

[In the morning, the older brother was all "SHE BETTER BE GONE WHEN I GET BACK."]

Starkwell: Awesome.

Lovelock: Is there gonna be a point to this, because we've just been watching a love affair for over half an hour?  No drama, no nothing.  Just two people being in love for half an hour?  Bullshit.

[Goofy music plays while they show a montage of the two being in love and escaping to Scotland!  Riding bikes!  Rolling around in a field! Crashing in the waves!  Doing sex!]

Lovelock: What the fuck position is that?

Starkwell: She seems to have enjoyed it.

Lovelock: Ugh. BORING.

[After the sex scene there was another goofy montage.  But this one ended with Hugh randomly dropping dead while running on the beach.]

Lovelock: That's why I'll never go to Scotland.

Starkwell: Yeah, that's why.

Lovelock: It seems to rain a lot.  And what's with all the sea and sand?

Starkwell: Well, at least the honeymoon is over.

[...]

In the middle of the night, Anna goes wandering and stumbles upon undead (?) Hugh.  He's up and walking around.  She doesn't look shocked or even all that weirded out.  In the morning they leave, to return to Jersey, without seeing the doctor (who pronounced him dead) and it is VERY clear that something is up with Dead Hugh.  He isn't talking, he's just following Anna around and staring at her.  Anna, on the other hand, still looks the same ol' bitch.

[...]

[Anna is trying to teach Hugh how to speak.]

Starkwell: Um… ?  What?

Lovelock: How is it she knows what to do with a dead guy?

[Dead Hugh telepathically (?) tells Anna that he loves her…]

Lovelock: Did she hear that or just us?

Starkwell:  Why isn't she more shocked by the fact that he is dead.

[The older brother comes home, and tries to explain to Anna that Hugh is a walking corpse, possessed, and doesn't feel anything.]

Starkwell: And now he isn't surprised either?

Lovelock: I'd like to think that if I came across a walking dead person that I'd be calm like that, and be able to be all "let's go to a priest to EX-OR-CISE him.  EX-OR-CISE."

Starkwell: I think you'd scream like a little girl.

Lovelock: What?

Starkwell: Or giggle.

Lovelock: Better.

[...]

So then Hugh runs his brother's van off the road sending him to his death, and a chime plays, and it looks as though Anna knows about it already.  It's bizarre and unclear whether or not Anna is controlling him.  What is clear is that Anna is fucking nuts and kind of an asshole.  Then they do telepathic sex, I think.

[...]

[After celebrating the brother's death over breakfast, Hugh telepathically asks Anna to kiss him and then attempts to literally suck the life out of her.]

Lovelock: And that's why you never kiss a dead man.

Starkwell: Well, that could be one reason.

Lovelock: I hope he smashes her head in with a rock next.

[...]

Hugh comes after Anna, he's all decomposing and she slashes his face up with a candlestick.  He leaves and starts walking SLOWLY towards the lighthouse.  She follows him, also very slowly.  After carefully showing her one or two mile journey / slow walk to the lighthouse, Anna and Hugh walk hand in hand into the rising tide and drown themselves.  Yeah, and then the credits roll.

[...]

Lovelock: HOLY FUCK, ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?!?!?!