A Whole New Batch Of Bizness

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Hey everybody!!  Sorry for the irregularity of this column.  It is similar to my movie watching habits, being very sporadic.  It’s been a week or so since my last one and I have a new batch of reviews for your entertainment.  I’m gonna put the smack down on six movies today and I’m already two films into my next column.  

The Air I Breathe

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I’m only going to be able to recommend half of this movie.  It plays out in four little vignettes, all loosely connected, that are bloated with so much self importance and message that it’s impossible for it to succeed.  The first, starring Forrest Whitaker as a man who fucks himself over in a gambling scheme who then decides to rob a bank, is pretty terrific.  The second, with Emile Hirsch as a wannabe gangster being shown the ropes by Brendan Frasers’ veteran hitman, is also pretty great.  Next, you have a boring and insipid tale of a pop star (Sarah Michelle Gellar) in debt to Andy Garcias’ mob boss.  Finally, an absolutely unbelievable and laughably pretentious bit with Gellar and Kevin Bacon.  I had high hopes at the beginning but by the end I pretty much hated this movie.  There’s a good cast and some good performances, but I’d only recommend it if you catch it on tv or something and can skip the last half.  Definitely don’t pay for it.

Teeth

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I’ve looked forward to Teeth for quite a while now.  A film based on the “vagina dentata” legend about a girl with teeth (dentata) in the vagina (vagina)-see, Latin is easy!  Based on that, you probably already know if you want to see this or not.  The obvious thing that you would expect to happen in a movie with that description does indeed happen.  It’s not that great a movie and in parts it does come off as kinda silly, but seriously, DUDES GET THEIR CHUBS BIT OFF BY A VICIOUS VAG.  What the hell else do you need to know?  Get it now.

Kung Fu Panda

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Kung Fu Panda is really one of the best animated movies I’ve seen in a while.  Coming from Dreamworks I didn’t really expect much, since I’m not really a fan of the Shrek movies.  Most of their stuff comes off as over-caffeinated tripe littered with pop culture references that are only funny as long as the issue is prominent.  That is not the case here.  First off, this is a real authentic old school kung fu movie.  It’s also an old school inspirational ‘follow your dreams’ movie.  It’s also an old school ‘geek makes good’ movie with a spot on perfect vocal performance by Jack Black.  Plus, David Cross is in it.  I loved this.  It is a perfect kids’ movie, the kind that adults can enjoy equally but usually for completely different reasons.  Basically, like a Pixar movie.  I definitely recommend this one.

Grizzly Park

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If you are familiar with the typical quality of direct to video (DTV) releases then you’ll be much more forgiving of this flick.  It is a creature feature in that there is a bear that attacks a group of people stationed in the woods.  The saving grace is that this is more a character based movie that a simple slasher type.  Albeit, the characters are acted badly and are very generic which is why I made the DTV comment earlier.  By “great movie” standards, of course it’s crap.  I don’t think anyone involved with the movie would disagree with you there, but judging on a DTV scale, it’s pretty damn good.  Beats the hell out of all that SciFi channel crap.  As far as plot, there’s not a lot to go into, so I won’t.  This is the kind of thing where you know already if it’s your cup of joe.

Inside

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This is one of the most extreme and brutal films I have ever seen.  Plot, quickly, is a pregnant woman is giving birth the following day.  She is terrorized at home the night before by a woman who wants to cut the baby out of her and take is for herself.  This is a French movie originally titled A L’Interieur (as you can see by the poster), Inside is the English version name.  If you like horror and violent movies you will love this.  You will be pushed to your limits, but you will love it because it does not leave you with a feeling of “wow, that was so fuckin cool and hardcore.”  No, it’s more like, “I cannot believe how intense and disturbing that shit was.  That was a truly scary movie, the likes of which I have not seen in many a year.  Now, not only do I have to be scared of long black haired Asian women, I must fear long black haired French women with gaps in their teeth.”  All jokes aside, I pretty much didn’t know how to talk about this after watching it.  It’s one of those where if you know someone else whose seen it, you can mention it to them and say something about how crazy it is and they’ll simply nod, a bit wide eyed, and come back with something like a “yup” or “ohh, yeah.”  I haven’t had that experience yet, as I’m the only person I’ve spoken to whose seen it, but I can imagine.  I heard several years ago that Stephen King didn’t like Kubricks’ version of The Shining because he said he felt like Kubrick was trying to hurt people with the movie.  I always thought that was stupid and didn’t make sense, but I kinda get it now.

One more thing, do not rent this from Blockbuster, because their version has 7 minutes cut which I hear makes a big difference.  I believe it too, judging by some of the shit you see in this.  Make sure your cut is 83 minutes and not 75.  I downloaded mine, to make sure I had the right thing. 

Funny Games

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I’m going to start this out with a direct quote from my better half, Mrs. Ree’ Kincheloe.  “You can’t really say it’s a good movie, because nothing good happens in it.”  (She dug the hell outta the movie, by the way)  Very, very true.  While this is a masterfully shot film, and incredibly effective, it just feels wrong to call it “good.”  Michael Haneke knows his craft.  He creates a very fun, playful mood for the film to take place.  Then bad shit happens.  More bad shit happens.  Most of the shit happens offscreen and you’re left to your imagination to fill in the blanks.  It’s all going fine and well and you’re watching comfortably like most horror movies, knowing that eventually it’ll all turn around because the good guys always win, right?  Or, at least, the villians are meant to be the ‘heroes’ in a darkly comedic way and you just laugh when the good guys lose.  Same here, the villains are funny, charming even though they’re disgustingly preppy rich kids who are harassing people out of boredom.  The victims seem like decent enough folks and you feel bad for them.  You’re definitely on their side in this movie since the baddies are such pricks.  Then, something happens.  You, the audience, are shot a look by one of the villains.  A smirk, that seemingly says, “Yeah, I know you’re enjoying this.  It’s funny, right?”  This happens a few times.  To me, this is to make you feel a kinship with these bastards instead of the victims.  As things get increasingly bad, and you find yourself no longer being able to enjoy their “Games”, your mind has been officially fucked.  Damned if it doesn’t work, too.  Definitely check this out, it’s well worth it and it will stick with you for days. 

So, dear faithful readers, I’d like a little feedback from you.  Do you prefer that I type out long multi-film reviews like this, or would you prefer only one or two at a time.  The difference is that in this format I won’t write as much, whereas with only one or two to a column I might go on for days on the same movie.   

Comment here or just shoot me an email at evilreeves@gmail.com about this or any of my other blogs.   

See you later, kids!!!!! 

Steve

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