« November 2006 |
| January 2007 »
Named after Academy Award Winner Jamie Foxx, The Foxx is when an actor or actress achieves cinema's highest honor, and responds by signing their name to the next available project, regardless of quality and story, for the sole purpose of parlaying the recent accolade into big fucking piles of cash. Case in point. Stealth.
Following his amazing performance in 2004's Ray, Foxx still drunk from his own fame, jumped on board Stealth.....no need to really elaborate on that mess. The list of bad decision making and script choices following such success is virtually endless in Hollywood. Below are a few of the more notable:
Anthony Hopkins won an Oscar for 1991's The Silence of the Lambs, and then mailed it in for 1992's Freejack.
Kevin Spacey was a best supporting Oscar winner in 1995's The Usual Suspects, and delivered an unusually suspect performance in his next project Outbreak.
Julia Roberts won an Oscar in 2000's Erin Brockovich (why I still don't know), and has yet to make a watchable movie since.....or prior.
Dustin Hoffman took home the Oscar for best actor in 1988's Rain Man, and then gave us back to back winners in Family Business, and Dick Tracy.
Halle Berry, for reasons still unknown won an Oscar for her role in 2001's Monster's Ball. Fortunately she quickly returned to form in 2004's Catwoman.
When actors and actresses reach the highest level of their art (or think they have), and rapidly switch gears to whore themselves to the machine that is Hollywood....they have been Foxxed.
Timothy Dalton is the one true James Bond,
"You're the one, I feel good to come home to!"
One of life's obvious flaws is that time keeps slipping into the future. (Yes i'm a Steve Miller fan!) however I found the one thing that actually slows the axis of time down and time goes so slowly that you already feel arthitis set in after you're done watching this garbage. Garbage which is yet another clunker from the resume of Albert F. Pyun.
Pyun's movies fall in two categories. Either guilty pleasure bad or just godawfully unwatchable. Brain Smasher...A Love Story is one of Pyun's most tragic efforts, a movie so tragic in its casting it has Andrew Dice Clay as an action hero fighting warrior monks who are looking for a magic flower which gives them superpowers. Somehow this isn't the most ridiculous movie that Pyun has made, because in 1986 Pyun made Radioactive Dreams a post apoclypse comedy with John Stockwell and Michael Dudikoff(!) as sleuth novel private eyes taking on mutant hippies, an army of midgets who unleashed F-bombs a lot and frog people. It was terrible but somehow slightly better than Brain Smasher...A Love Story.
What Brain Smasher...A Love Story shares in common with the forementioned Radioactive Dreams is that it is also Pyun's (disasterous) stab at comedy. While Pyun gave us plenty of laughs in 1989's Cyborg, Pyun seems completely out of his element when trying to deliver intentional laughs. There are of course some so stupid it's kinda funny moments but typically we just sit there and gawk at the retarded idea to cast Andrew Dice Clay as an action star.
Teri Hatcher is also aboard, back when she was actually hot. Which brings me to the next point, how are we supposed to believe that Teri Hatcher (or any mildly attractive chick for that matter) could end up with the Diceman? That's like me getting a threesome with two supermodels after a showering strike. Plus the Diceman is noticably pot bellied, indeed is there anyone out there that would believe that Andrew Dice Clay could beat martial arts experts? The man looks as if he will have a heart attack everytime he throws a punch.
Also as a former state kickboxing champion myself, I have to bring up the credibility among the fight sequences, or as such the lack of it. The action sequences consist of a couple of bitchslaps and maybe a couple of guys getting pelted in the nuts. Is this what the virtue of martial arts has been reduced to? I myself was shocked just how much the warrior monk leader (Played by none other than Yuji "Karate Kid II" Okumoto) can catch bullets and fling them back at the shooter, but he can't even hold his own in a fight against a supermodel or pudgy bouncer? Wow.
The worst part of this movie (and seriously this says part says a lot) is the completely unfunny script which sets up dreadful would be comic setpieces and then botches beyond recognition. Even worse is that they repeat the jokes over and over again, so it's like watching a later Police Academy movie, which is sadly probably funnier than this. This is a comedy so bad, that one has the sneaking suspicion that it was originally written as an action flick made to star Sasha Mitchell (Hands down Pyun's biggest star post-Van Damme, pre-Rutger Hauer) but probably declined to do the noticably similar Kickboxer 3! (All of which will be reviewed by yours truly!) Also for some reason this was popular when I was a teenager, as it was on Cinemax everyday in the summer after I started middle school. It stands to reason, this movie is somehow worse than I remembered.
Why am I giving it one hamlin? The title is one of the best out there. I mean Brain Smasher...A Love Story, gives me goosebumps as it sounds like a documentary made about trailerpark couples.
"Yer alright LaRusso!"
Actually LaRusso, you are far from alright.
The Karate Kid is one of many movies that represents the popular 80's theme that young people should solve their problems through the use of violence. In fairness, The Karate Kid exemplifies this way of life.
Daniel LaRusso played by then popular Ralph Macchio (now he makes a career as a cameo actor) is a young high schooler who is ripped from his New Jersey roots and dragged across the country to sunny California. Days before the start of the new school year, LaRusso begins his stay by making enemies with John Lawrence and his pals, all of whom are star pupils of the Cobra Kai Martial Arts Training Facility owned and operated by the mentor of mentors John Kreese (played by Martin Kove of Rambo fame). Great idea by the way to send your angry adolescents to learn how to fight from an an even angrier Vietnam Vet. To make matters worse, LaRusso begins romancing a young Ali Mills (played by Elizabeth Shue, who's career also spiraled into irrelevance until she chose to display her breast in Leaving Las Vegas), the former love interest of John (Johnny) Lawrence, and completely solidifies his position of target for him and the Cobra Boys.
How does the young Daniel LaRusso decide to face his new found issues? Fighting of course. Unfortunately, LaRusso's New Jersey Karate (which he studied for arduous months at the local YMCA) is no match for the well oiled machine that is L.A. Karate. So he spends the first half of the movie getting his ass handed to him repeatedly....to which he responds by throwing his bike in a dumpster. Luckily his bike, and perhaps life is rescued by Mr. Miyagi (played by Pat Morita of Bloodsport 2: The Next Kumite).
Mr. Miyagi takes LaRusso on a journey through the martial arts for a couple of months, and manages to get the young boy to finish his landscaping, fencing, siding, and detailing all of his cars......while probably stealing some glances at the form of the sweat covered LaRusso. While reaping the rewards of LaRusso's labors, his work is not without lesson, as the continuos motions of his work have trained him to be a superb martial artist (this process takes a week, and much like many franchise martial arts schools would have them annointing you black belts). Throw in a few training montages cut to the soothing rythyms of Zamphir, master of the pan flute....and the blueberry crepe, and LaRusso is ready to face his nemesis Johnny Lawrence at the All Valley Under 18 Karate Championships, and win some respect. Is a month or two of training under the guide of a drunk superintendent from Okinawa enough to best the skills of an individual who has apparently trained his entire life. Yes.
Violence and LaRusso win out. Not only does he systematically defeat all of the Cobra Kai assholes, but he cuts a path to Lawrence in the finals, and by using one of the most ridiculously telegraphed moves in martial arts movie history defeats his opponent to win the tournament. The Karate Kid ends with a bloodied Johnny handing the trophy to LaRusso, and exclaiming 'Yer alright LaRusso!'. Yeah!
So what did we learn? Violence is the only way to solve your problems. It is possible to become a black belt karate champion in as little as 6 weeks just by washing cars. Zamphir truly is the master of the pan flute. Telling someone you are going to kick them in the face is a move which cannot be defended. Throw your bicycle in the trash and a drunk pedophile will teach you how to fight. The Karate Kid Part 4, The Next Karate Kid, actually stars multiple Oscar winner Hillary Swank (how's that for credibility Academy?, when does Jean Claude Van Damme get his?). And finally, Adrien Brody is an ugly fuck.
Hamlin Grade: 3
Timothy Dalton is the one true James Bond,
"One individual mistake can cost your squad everything!"
Somewhere in Rancho Carne, California, lives a hero that has yet to be awakened. That hero is Torrance Shipman, hauntingly played by Kirsten Dunst. There is a group of warriors known as the Toros, and that group has yet to be tested in battle. Their leader, a tough Captain known only as Big Red (Lindsay Sloane), has taken this group of recruits as far as they can go, but she is being redeployed and must now turn over the reigns to a new leader who has the fortitude to lead them into battle, and that leader is Shipman. Shipman gladly accepts this new leadership role, but learns just how much she has to learn almost immediately. She fails in her first battle and is stripped of her uniform in front of all her peers. She screams in shame and horror. That scream awakens her and the audience realizes this was all just a dream. And thus director Peyton Reed deftly foreshadows what is to come in Bring It On.
This is no random dream, however, but reflects the great changes that are about to become reality in Shipman's life. Indeed, that very day, events are about to be put in motion which will soon affect all of the members of the elite Toros. Although they are all hardened warriors, they select Shipman to lead their squad in the future. Shipman eagerly takes command and sets out immediately to test their mettle. Taking them through their maneuvers, Shipman knows that though they may have lived up to the expectations of Big Red, they still have much to learn. Shipman pushes them harder and harder until they reach the breaking point and one of their veterans, Carver, falls and nearly breaks her neck. Completely demoralized, Shipman dismisses the squad knowing that she has filled them not with confidence, but with doubts about her ability to lead.
Shipman returns home only to be confronted by her family. Her younger brother is a complete slacker and has no respect for the life Shipman has chosen. He's rather play video games than confront the horrors his sister has to face on a daily basis. Her parents are equally confused by her life-choice and try their best to talk their daughter out of her course of action before it's too late. Shipman tells them that it's a calling, that it's her life and she'll do as she chooses. Sometimes a hero has to walk a lonely path. That's Bring It On!
Shipman can't let her personal life interfere with the task at hand, and the first thing she has to do is replace Carver. It's only been a day since the accident, but already many on her crew have begun to doubt her ability to lead. Replacing one of your own is a grueling ordeal, and the new recruits are put to the test one by one. And one by one they all fail to live up to the standards of the Toros. Shipman is about to give up in despair when Missy Pantone (Eliza Dushku) walks through the door. Pantone oozes attitude, and the other members of the Toros dismiss her out of hand. Clearly this soldier doesn't respect authority, and the other Toros feel threatened by her attitude. But where the others see only threat, Shipman sees potential, and in the future battles that are to be waged, the Toros are going to need every weapon they can get. In the gritty dialogue of this movie, Shipman demands that the others get on board, "Missy's the poo, so take a big whiff!" That's Bring It On!
Shipman's instincts prove to be right on target as less than a day into training, Pantone senses a crack in the their armor. Pantone convinces Shipman to take a dangerous journey into the heart of enemy territory: East Compton. There they witness their archrivals, the Clovers, going through maneuvers of their own; the same top secret maneuvers the Toros have been working at so hard. And not only were they performing the same maneuvers, it was also painfully obvious that they were much more proficient. They are led by the ruthless Isis, played by Gabrielle Union, and it's only then that Shipman sees what it takes to be a true leader. After a tricky escape, Shipman travels back to Rancho Carne with a heavy heart, knowing that the Toros have been betrayed by one of their own, and that their training must start over from scratch.
Bring It On is a stirring film about honor, brotherhood and self-sacrifice, but perhaps more than that, it's a film about confronting one's enemy and walking away with some respect and understanding for that foe. The battle scenes are unnerving, leaving you with the sense of what it must have been like to be in those arenas. The Toros may lose this battle, but because of the persistence of one Torrance Shipman, they live to see another day. Bring It On indeed.
Hamlin Grade: 8
Big Daddy Yum Yum
Silent Night Deadly Night Part 2 is a lot like American Kickboxer 2 in that it taught me a lot of stuff. I mean indeed I felt like I was back in high school with all the knowledge poured into my brain, of course times are different so despite having brain matter that has turned into a giant turd, the workout on my brain was truly aluminating. (See that, I can't even spell anymore?)
One of the vast things I learned was that, it is possible for a baby to remember his parent's murder. However this happens only to the sharpest of minds and being that serial killers have high IQs, I can only assume a person turns serial killer due to a circumsion that the baby remembers and the pain and humilation to go with lying in a hellish existance while nurses are sticking thermators up your ass and constantly rubbing disinfectant to stop infections from spreading, all this pain experienced by an infant is probable cause for the sociopath in today's society. I know a lot of scientists and doctors would debate this and have all kinds of proof but those guys are dumbasses and if Lee Harry tells me that a baby can remember a murder, this theory is one that shall be held in high regard in credibility.
I also learned that nuns don't bleed. Now I was always aware of the fact that nuns were unlike any human being on this earth, I mean we are talking about women who swear off sex, dress in black and white outfits no matter the heat and take great sadistic pleasure in spanking us kids. We all know that priests are quite fond of little boys but could it be possible that nuns take out their sexual frustrations on us kids who screw up? Normally I'd argue that it takes a lot of faith to give up the good things in life, which is mainly sex, TV and beer but once again this movie proved to be a sinister artifact of what conspiracy lies in the catholic church. I mean very sinister stuff, mainly that nuns don't bleed. Even when decapitated. I was much puzzled at this resolve especially since this is an old sickly woman, as her frail form and old demeanor would indicate. It's equally noticable that she still wears her nun suit even years after retirement, and even though her head is taken from her neck like a wheel falls off an axel, I think it is equally suspicious that there is no blood on her nun suit and that the cutter was dressed as Santa. Perhaps the war on christmas is a conspiracy more sinister then we thought.
Even more alarming are the questions raised by decay of our relationships today. I certainly have seen my share of relationships and although most of them fall apart due to differences, cheating or just because they can't stand each other (Such as always the case with me!). However few have approached the more disturbing then the car attena stranglings that have indeed gone unnoticed. We now live in a more technological time so people now have satelite radios, Also I noticed that Cable TV and players which played tapes became more popular after this movie. In other words people have been using car attenas to strangle their ex for years and it was only this movie that shed some light on this issue. I for one was lost in the abyss of truth that I couldn't grasp without the help of a pill which makes you forget the evil truth surrounding you. Likewise it's truly frightening that with the rise of technology that people have conveniently forgotten the horror of getting your neck squeezed by a steel cord that bends. I think it's obvious that the whole AIDS scare in the 80's was a red herring meant to throw us off the path of the truth exposed here.
Another truly inspirational tone is the story of a man's rage which boils underneath the surface. This guy could be serving you food, selling you shoes or just working at the fast food joint asking if you want fries with that. However the inspirational material is that of a guy who is so tightly wound under pressure that even the gun won't cooperate and give him the death he so solemnly seeks, the gun jams and he gets this all out to his shrink. Clearly this is a message that everybody can be helped with therapy. I also learned that therapy will also cause eye twitching strain which could or could not be a side effect from all the murdering bloodshed you've seen over the years. I personally feel that way everytime I see Paris Hilton or Kevin Federline but my homicidal energy is kept underwraps for the day when I actually get pushed to the point of acting out my violent fantasies on the people I hate the most.
I must admire a man such as this, who is willing to open up and get these important issues off his chest, a shrink after all is the mental fixer upper and it's truly inspirational to see a serial killer such as this get out why his fury was unleashed. He also has a reason most of us can really sympathize with, his girlfriend wasn't a virgin. This is indeed a crushing blow because after all what big breasted, nasal voiced hot blonde chick is easy? I mean how much tang can a hot blonde get? I perfectly understand these motives because I myself suffer from a dilemma which finds me unable to NOT kill anyone who likes Carlos Mencia.
Normally people would say, oh come on it's just a movie. But I ask you can a movie about a killer santa movie contain the true problems which plauge our society? I mean if The DaVinci Code can depict the secrets of Christ, there is no way that this can be coincidence, can it?
So I leave you with this, Silent Night Deadly Night Part 2, a horror movie, or a conspiracy? You be the judge
Hamlin Grade: 9
In 1992, Director Roland Emmerich gave us the most anticipated team-up in film history by uniting then action superstars Jean Claude Van Damme, and Dolph Lundgren in Universal Soldier. Not since the pairing of Deniro and Pacino in Heat has the world witnessed an event of this extraordinary magnitude.
Van Damme and Lundgren star as Vietnam soldiers who are killed in action (actually by one another), and then resurrected decades later as part of a secret government project called the Universal Soldier program. Dubbed 'UniSols', these walking dead soldiers are used as counter terrorist, and black ops specialists around the nation. The program is met with glowing success led by Colonel Perry (played by the guy who held a lighter under Mr. Joshua's arm in Lethal Weapon) until GR44 (Van Damme), begins having 'Nam flashbacks.
Upon completion of their latest successful terrorist takedown, reporter Veronica Roberts tails the UniSols back to their headquarters (a large truck that looks similiar to the 18 wheeler Knight Rider once battled against) and captures footage of an apparently dead Universal Soldier (GR76, played by bodybuilder Ralf Moeller, who was the unfortunate victim of the Van Damme split in Cyborg).....until he rises. Spotted by security cameras, she and her camera man are quickly subdued by the UniSols. GR13 (Lundgren) goes haywire and executes the camera man, and quickly triggers another flashback in GR44 (Van Damme)......let's take a quick step back. In Vietnam, Van Damme was Luc Deveraux (yes Van Damme has ties to the French Bayou to cover his accent....again), and Lundgren was Andrew Scott, his superior officer. Scott went mad, and began making a necklace out of human ears (the traditional jewelry of American soldiers back then), and executing innocent villagers. Van Damme protesting that the village was cleared, refuses to execute the last two survivors....Scott insisted, and executed the boy, Van Damme fought him, and they both killed each other. Back to present. GR44 seeing the similiarity to the situations, attacks GR13, and flees with the reporter.
Universal Soldier becomes a chase movie. The UniSols still under control pursue the now semi-lucid GR44 and reporter Wells. In their wake, they destroy hotels, supermarkets, gas stations, bars, restaurants, and liberally season the action with a blatant Van DAMN! Yes, old JCVD gives us a brutally long look at his tight glutes before collapsing into the arms of the reporter. Because all UniSols are lo-jacked to allow for easy tracking, GR44 must remove the homing beacon, by cutting it from his hamstring. Of course while looking for it, he must ask the reporter if having a penis is normal? Huh? He can remember Vietnam, but can't remember his own penis? That war really fucked our boy up.
GR44 eventually discovers the doctor who helped create him in Dr. Christopher Gregor (played by the late great Jerry Orbach) and learns that he is actually Luc Devereaux....French guy. GR13 and crew eventually track him down in their giant rig, but after a long highway chase, Devereaux manages to escape by running GR13 off of a cliff. Obviously safe (yeah right), Devereaux and Wells make their way back to the Bayou, where his mom and dad are still living. All seems well. Well....not for us. We know a movie with Dolph and Van Damme in it wouldn't be complete without a ridiculously long Bloodsport type hand to hand to battle. And complete it is not.
Because Devereaux happened to describe his family's farm in Louisiana down to the finest detail, GR13, who now realizes he is Andrew Scott is able to find his location with little difficulty. I wonder if Scott knows what his penis is all about? Scott of course has been consistantly injecting himself with the super strength cocktail, the Universal Soldier program was built on, and has increased his strength to Fletch like levels. He also carries a healthy supply of the serum which comes in monster sized syringes within his vest. During his final battle with Devereaux, he of course doses himself several times just to completely ensure his victory. Devereaux, while getting his ass kicked all over the farm, manages to free a syringe from Scott, and after being put through a wall, injects himself with the drug. Probably one of the finest lessons is on display at this moment in Universal Soldier. Drugs are good. Do drugs kids, they will make you stronger and solve all of your problems. This important fact is only outweighed by the general action movie lesson, that violence is always the answer.
Now, the match is even, and Devereaux turns the tide of this ridiculously long fight scene (probably one of the longest I've seen since the 'Put on the damn sunglasses' fight between Roddy Piper and Keith David in They Live...which for the record was outstanding) and impales Scott on a large combine. Scott however still alive tries to pull Devereaux's head onto one of the machine's large spikes......until Devereaux fires it up. The combine churns to life, and we have fresh ground Dolph! Nice!
Universal Soldier provides solid action, and a certainly satisfied fans that called for the union of these two action stars. I remember when we all pined for a Schwarzenegger and Stallone movie, but Hollywood just didn't have the budget....I bet they could pull it off now, but it would probably end up being called Grumpy Old Men 3: My liver hurts from Steroids. I digress. Dolph Lundgren also manages to pull off the Ironside Agenda in this one, although given the cast, aside from Orbach (who's part was borderline insignificant....much like the roles Fletch's brother Jim usually plays) wasn't very difficult to out act. Still, the Ironside Agenda is the Ironside Agenda, and Jean Claude Van Damme.....well he's no Dolph Lundgren. Dolph! Dolph!
Hamlin Grade: 6.5
Timothy Dalton is the one true James Bond,
Joe vs. the Volcano will have you erupting with laughter one minute, and have tears streaming down your face the next! This off-beat comedy is the first time that Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan graced the silver-screen together. The magnificent chemistry they created in this life-affirming film, would leave audiences begging for more. Thank God Hollywood provided us withseveral more movies starring this adorable couple. I just can't get enough!
Tom Hanks plays Joseph Banks, a hypochondriac who's basement office job is sucking the life out of him. Joe's continual visits to the doctor's office reveals he is suffering from a terminal "Brain Cloud." Shortly after Joe's diagnosis he is visited by a rich businessman, played by the loveable Lloyd Bridges, who makes Joe a fateful proposition; to live the rest of his short life like a king and go out like a man by jumping into a volcano! The down and out Joseph Banks is transformed into a hero, journeying into the unknown. Hanks is able to achieve this stunning metamorphoses through an often over-looked acting technique; the cutting off of the mullet. Brilliant! This is arguably Hank's best performance.
Tommy boy is not the only actor to showcase tremendous range, however, as we have Meg Ryan playing not one, not two, but three caricatures, each one more impressive than the last. Her chameleon like acting is unparalleled! Ryan is able to play a blond, a brunet, and a red head flawlessly. The fact that she was not considered for an Oscar for her work in this film boggles the mind. Joe vs. the Volcano uses subtle symbolism to drive home it's valuable lessons: life is a hard, long and crooked road that we all must trudge, but if we are lucky enough we may find our own personal volcano and jump in.
Hamlin Grade: 3.5
American Ninja is hands down Michael Dudikoff's greatest moment in film. (Okay he has two films, Avenging Force and The Silencer that are actually legit decent B.movies but still) Indeed watching Michael Dudikoff completely try and do his best James Dean impression alone makes American Ninja the greatest ninja movie ever made. (At least in my opinion.) Also what makes American Ninja so brillant isn't so much the action sequences (which are pretty enjoyable) but that the musical score is so daft and completely ridiculous that American Ninja is a can't miss, in terms of utter brillance.
"He posess great skills!"
Another aspect of American Ninja is that, like Cyborg, this also a Golan and Globus combined effort, and these men of cheese delivered the finest gouda this side of Holland and American Ninja doesn't disappoint. Let me explain that a ninja actually tips a palm tree over a car to prevent the damsel in distress from escaping. The ninjas somehow manage to kill soldiers armed with bows and arrows, however being that the soldiers are no marksmen we see them fire M16s only hitting one ninja. (Are they sure this wasn't the Coast Guard?) In anycase Dudikoff opens a can of whup ass on these ninjas and apparently he's a ninja because uses a tire changing kit to destroy 5 ninjas (Okay they're armed thugs dressed as construction workers) but Michael Dudikoff is a quick one, one said guard tries to wack the Dudmesiter with his machine gun, and the Dudmeister ducks causing the construction guard/hijacker to fall flat on his ass. Priceless.
"How do you like that numbnuts?"
Of course the ass-kicking portion more then makes up for any slow spots this (non)script has. For instance we get a completely impressive (if not a tad too hokey) climax where the black star ninja uses lasers, fire and all kinds of cool ninja contraptions to take down our only Ninja to defend the American way, however America never tolerates a loser so our hero (straight from the Reagan era) isn't going to go down with a fight and although I'm not going to completely spoil it, just let me imply that Michael Dudikoff made an American Ninja 2 (On par with this) and American Ninja 4 (Not fun-bad, just bad bad.) However what is most impressive is that Dudikoff never really posesses the fanciest footwork to get everyone to think he's a ninja but Michael Dudikoff's James Dean like impression is to get us by that prior to filming, Dudikoff had no martial arts training. Still there is something about his last name, Dudikoff, Dudikoff, Dudikoff which made him a star. I mean you know the guy has to be a tough motherfucker if his last name is Dudikoff. That and this movie.
"I think I touched something!"
However Steve James is there also and he does pull off the Ironside Agenda. He is easily the most charismatic and likable actors in the movie. I mean Dudikoff gives the second best performance in the movie, so you know right there that we are dealing with actors who are terrible. I mean there is an actor named Guich Koock. Also a guy who speaks with an embarrassingly bad french accent. Which leads to "American, american ninja, I want to negoitate!" not to mention a damsel in distress who was most likely chosen because of how hot she was, but she sadly never shows us her goods, because it must've not been in her contract. However to make up for this sad turn of events, Dudikoff goes through out the film hardly ever wearing a shirt.
"Let's get out of here this place stinks!"
Another aspect of this is the whole Ninja theme, which basically make this a timeless artifact of the 80's. I mean few things were as prominent as ninjas and breakdancing and Sam Firstenberg gave us both of best worlds, in giving us the Breakin series, this and it's sequel as well as Ninja III:The Domination which combined the elements! Thankfully nobody sports a mullet and seeing Dudikoff's awkwardness of showing his buff torso is something that makes this the perfect flick to watch on a rainy night. Indeed I own all four of these movies on DVDs and hands down this is my favorite guilty pleasure.
"Have you ever heard of ninjisu, sir?"
"Of course I have!"
So go out and see it, cause if you don't, cause life is precious and I don't think anyone can afford to die without seeing this movie at least once. Oh and it gets better on repeat viewings. There's a reason why I own it on DVD. So get off your duff and see it, it's the perfect 80's martial arts flick. After all it's better than most Chuck Norris flicks. Then again though what isn't?
"Then he shall die!"
Oh and the dialog is priceless too.
Hamlin Grade: 7
"We've got to find a hideaway, a hideaway into the night!"
One of the things you can always tell about the quality of a movie, is whether it has synth-line soundtrack which guarantees that it was made in the 80's, is perfect for Bad Movie Knights and is most likely a movie of exceptionally poor quality. Although in the case of R.O.T.O.R., it only qualifies as two out of the three in this rule. In that R.O.T.O.R. isn't made with poor quality, because it's made with no quality at all. Also it's also hard to believe the movie was made in the late 80's, since the production values and special effects recall the early 60's in their overall "timelessness".
R.O.T.O.R. is a Texan rip off of Robocop, except the difference is that R.O.T.O.R. is a renegade robot gone beserk rather than a robotic cop that actually worked. Actually it's somewhat symbolic in that where as Robocop worked, R.O.T.O.R.indeed is an unholy monster of a film. Oh and the best thing of all is that instead of making robot parts, we instead cast an actor who's overall calling card seems to be reaching into a car at various times. (Indeed R.O.T.O.R. sticks his arm through a window trying to grab our heroine, more times than he actually kills people. Hilarious!) What is even more priceless is that our hero played with oscar winning intensity by Richard Gesswein, who looks like a more drunk version of Nick Nolte, spits out such priceless lines as "Freeze you monster!" all of these single elements could make a four-star movie seem awful, but I haven't even gotten into the character of Steele who wears a skunk mullet, and (as Jabootu points out) uses a gun to whack R.O.T.O.R. with, instead of shooting him. Priceless. Almost as funny as the skunk mullet, though not quite.
The title itself is enough to warrant a laugh only because it's so direly stupid. R.O.T.O.R. stands for Robotic Officer Tactical Operations Research Unit, of course one would then say shouldn't it be called ROTORU? But then again logic is one of those things that doesn't apply here. Another aspect of the movie which makes this perfect 3AM fodder is that the hero's gun keeps changing. For instance the hero wields a colt python that is when he shoots it. However when he conceals it, it looks strangely like a B.B gun, The B.B repeaters that sell for say, $19.99. Of course back then it was about $10.99. (I know, I had one) Indeed strangely the R.O.T.O.R. cop wields the same gun and when he goes into the water the gun mysteriously turns into a B.B repeater. Truly Charles Bronson would be proud. Hed be even prouder of dialog like this
"Ha, you get to watch, you get to watch me blow her brains out! You going to stop me, all you got is a newspapter!"
"I got more then a newspaper and you get to guess what it is!"
At this moment the gun shoots a fireball (Literally it's like a bullet laced with C-4) and the guy flies backwards, this would be more convincing if we didn't see the shot guy move after the initial killshot. Movies like R.O.T.O.R.are great because you get to realize that there are still treasures of bad movies still available. You just have to look hard for them. R.O.T.O.R. is the perfect bad movie, a speciall helping of all that is terrible about the genre and in doing so it has provided the viewer with countless hours of laughter. As for the actors and the careers, most of them went back to who knows what, although our skunk mulleted bodybuilder woman played "Mary Turd" in Flesh Gordon 2. Of course my theory on why the actors involved in this movie never went on to any other movies, is mainly due to the fact that the actors looked at this movie and knew with all solemn truth, that there was no possible way to ever top this.
If not for American Kickboxer 2 and Sgt Pepper's Heart Club Band (Both will be reviewed and both will earn 10s by yours truly) this would be invincible in the stakes of hilarious bad movies. (It's on par with Troll 2)
Hamlin Grade: 9
Ahhhh, the 1980s....we celebrated our love affair of 3D movie making technology, dipped our toes across the pond into Australian culture, relished our hatred of the Soviet Union, and basked in the aura of a new found anti-hero. The Ninja. Unlike our brief relationship with the Aussie's, our love for these assassins from Japan never faultered....in fact, in many ways that love continues to grow.
In 1983, Sho Kosugi gave us Revenge of the Ninja. The second part of the then Ninja Trilogy (Enter the Ninja, and Ninja III: The Domination) was truly the masterpiece of this triumvirate. It showcases the skills of master martial artist Sho Kosugi (who really does fucking kick ass), and the apparell, skills, and weapons employed by the assassins of yesterday.
Revenge of the Ninja begins in Japan, where we see Cho Osaki (Kosugi), and his family enjoying a beautiful afternoon strolling their palatial estate. That is until Ninjas attack!!! Yes! For no apparent reason (which is the way of the ninja as you know), Ninja's by the truckload begin swarming from the forest, off the roofs, from the ponds, flying from the sky...Ninja's everywhere!! Unfortuanately for Cho, his entire family is massacred except for his newborn son Kane (played by Kane Kosugi, Shos son in real life....Sho and Kane are like the Japanese equivalent of the Stallones). Cho of course, exacts a small measure of revenge by killing all of the ninjas following the attack.....if only he had been available a few moments earlier....but then we wouldn't have a movie now would we? So the Osaki family is wiped out, except for Cho, Kane and the Grandmother and rather than stay on their sacred land, they flee to Los Angeles (L.A. Karate....so much better than Seattle Karate, see NRNS). California while being a non-smokers paradise, also has some very strict anti-ninja laws.....so the Osaki's destination of choice is perfect.
With the help of his friend Braden, Cho opens up a Japanese Gallery that showcases antique dolls in L.A. Little does Cho know, that his friend Braden hides a deadly secret (No fucking shit Pat, it's a secret, of course he's hiding it, damn I'm an idiot). Using Cho, and his dolls, Braden is smuggling heroin into the United States for his Japanese connections to the mafia led by Mob Boss Chifano.
Braden however while backstabbing his friend Cho, is likewise being assfucked by Chifano, and his henchmen steal the heroin filled dolls from him. Braden's real deadly secret, more deadly than the earlier, hidden, deadly secret, is that he himself is a Ninja. HUH? An American Ninja? That would never work. But Ninja he is. Braden lived in Japan for 20 years as Cho later informs us, and 20 years is roughly the amount of time it would take to become a Ninja...unless you goto Tiger Schulman's Karate and pay him $500 he can turn you into a Ninja by next Wednesday.
Braden obviously pissed off, dons his ninja gear and goes out on the town....his mission...kill everyone in Chifano's mob family....henchmen, relatives, pets, etc. Braden's ninja costume has a unique twist however. A shiny siver mask. The mask is of course is to hid the identity of Sho Kosugi who actually performs all of the stunts of the ninjas in this movie....very clever!
While Braden is off killing everyone, Cho walks into the gallery as it is being robbed by Chifano's henchmen.....one of whom is dressed like a Native American and wields a tomahawk. It's easily a 4 on 1 fight scene that starts behind the gallery, and continues in a van down an expressway, till Cho is finally tossed to the curb, bloody and bruised...but far from beaten. Cho returns to the gallery to find that his mother, has been slain by Braden (as the evil ninja, and she actually put up a decent fight against him considering her age), and although he promised he would never be a ninja again, he is left with little choice. So.....a little meditation, some incense, BAM...it's Ninja time!
Braden and Cho meet at the top of an L.A. skyscraper (the headquarters of the Chifano crime family), and battle on the rooftop tennis court. Revenge of the Ninja spares no opportunity to showcase every ninja weapon possible....throwing stars, blow guns, swords, exploding smoke bombs, harsh language, and a host of other weapons I've never heard of....but were all available through mail order catalogs when I was a kid. The end battle sequence is truly spectacular, and probably one of the best hand to hand combat sequences I've seen since Brokeback Mountain. The story is simple, the acting is average at best, the action...priceless.
Hamlin Grade: 6
Timothy Dalton is the one true James Bond,
All right, let's start with the premise. The movie takes place in 2024, sometime after the five-day battle known as World War IV. What happened to World War III, you may ask? Now don't start trying to make sense of this movie right from the get go or you're not going to have any fun. We're in a post-apocalyptic wasteland with every man out for himself. Wild bands of men are roaming the barren countryside looking for food to eat and women to rape. Rape, you say? Yes, rape. Make no bones about it, rape is the order of the day. Sounds a bit like Mad Max, no? Well indeed, Mad Max and it's subsequent follow-ups were heavily influenced by this film; better, yes, but they owe more than a little bit of gratitude to this film.
But I'm getting ahead of myself. The film opens with our star, Vic, played by none other than Don Johnson, creeping up on a band of ruffians raping a woman. A voice is urging him to be careful, take his time. We soon learn that the voice comes from his dog, Blood, the voice being provided by Tim McIntire. They speak to each other telepathically. Let's take a moment and consider that, shall we? They speak to each other telepathically. I considered going no further with this film, but it's so quirky that it quickly draws you in. The film does a great job of only giving you a little information at a time, thereby making you want to hang around for at least a little while to find out what is going on.
So you know one thing at this point, Vic is our hero trying to save a damsel in distress. Wrong. Vic was hoping to get to the woman first so that he could rape her. By the time he gets to her she's already dead and he laments, "Why'd they have to cut her? She was good for two or three more times." Now I'm hooked. And the talking dog (which is never really explained) just doesn't seem strange after long. Besides, he's got the best dialogue in the film. So let's move on, it's time for more scavenging and raping.
Vic and Blood have a symbiotic relationship; Blood need Vic to get the food and Vic needs Blood to sniff out women. That having been said, Blood's needs come first. Vic secures a sack of food and then they're off to the movies. The movies, in this case, are presented in a run-down, fenced in area that shows badly damaged and poorly made porn movies. "Fistful of Rawhide" is one of the flicks that we are treated to. It's here at the movies that Blood smells a woman. It's rape time! Vic follows her to her abode and immediately sets about his attack. Just one small problem; there's a gang of 23 hooligans converging on the same place with the same thing on their minds. Outnumbered? Yes, but Vic's got horniness on his side. He hasn't had a good rape in at least six weeks and that powers him to victory.
Our heroine is Quilla June Holmes, played by Susanne Benton, and she's a tasty little morsel. Much to Vic's surprise, she's into it. "Hey, you're ruining my rape!" As she requests a second go at Vic, Blood mutters, "Once
more into the breach, dear friend." Nice. Blood is obviously not having any of this and thinks Vic's an idiot. Blood becomes even more incredulous as Vic starts actually falling for Quilla. She's trying to convince him to follow her to Topeka, which is down under. No, we're not talking Australia here, we're talking underground. She takes off, and against Blood's best advice, Vic decides to follow.
And this is where things start to get really strange in this movie. I won't ruin the last part of the movie for you, but do yourself a favor and pick up this flick. Once you get down under you're treated to the acting stylings of Jason Robards, and any film with Robards can't be half bad. And the rest of the acting is surprisingly good for such a low budget movie, even Sonny Crockett holds his own. My only complaint is that I wanted this movie to be something more. I either wanted it to be a little bit better or much, much worse.
Hamlin Grade: 6
Big Daddy Yum Yum
Central Casting- This is Central Casting, how may I help you?
Joel Schmacher- Hi, this is Joel Schumacher and I need a little help casting
my next movie.
CC- Oh, Mr. Schumacher, I'm a big fan. I don't care about what everyone else says, I loved St. Elmo's Fire.
JS- Uh, thanks.
CC- What can I do you for?
JS- Well as I said, I need to cast a few parts.
CC- No problem. Let's start with your star. Who do you have?
JS- Michael Douglas.
CC- Oh. Uh huh. I see.
JS- You don't like Michael Douglas?
CC- No, he's fine I guess. If you like Michael Douglas.
JS- He's an Academy Award winner!
CC- I know, I know, but isn't he a bit past it? I mean he plays the same part all of the time.
JS- That's what's so great about this film, it's really character driven.
CC- You mean like Dustin Hoffman in Rain Man?
JS- Uh, no...
CC- Daniel Day Lewis in My Left Foot?
JS- Not exactly...
CC- Like Tom Hanks in Forrest Gump.
JS- For God's sake, he doesn't have any physical or mental handicaps!
CC- Well what's wrong with him then?
JS- Nothing's wrong with him.
CC- I thought you said this was a character piece?
JS- It is.
CC- Well what's his character then?
JS- He works as a designer for the Department of Defense.
CC- That's not much of a character.
JS- You don't understand, this is going to be Michael Douglas like you've never seen him before. He's going to have a flat-top haircut.
CC- Uh huh.
JS- And he's going to wear a really geeky short-sleeved white dress shirt and a tie and thick glasses.
CC- Uh huh.
JS- And a pocket protector.
JS- Are you still there?
CC- So his character is his hair and his clothes?
JS- I'm in so much trouble. Help me please!
CC- Take it easy. Who else do you have?
JS- Robert Duvall as a retiring cop on his last day on the job, and Barbara Hershey as his disgruntled ex-wife.
CC- You are in trouble. What were you thinking? You know those people can't play actual characters.
JS- I know, I know, but I agreed to this deal so that I would be allowed to make Batman Forever. It's going to star Val Kilmer and it's going to kick ass!
CC- Well let's see how I can help you. Give me the pitch for this one.
JS- A middle-aged guy, down on his luck, loses it one summer day while stuck in traffic on a LA freeway. He leaves his car and goes on a crime spree while trying to get back to his ex and his kid.
CC- Is that it?
JS- Is it that bad?
CC- I've seen worse. Here's what you're going to do; we're going to take all of the small roles in this film and fill them with bad actors playing
over the top stereotypes.
JS- That sounds awful.
CC- It is, but in comparison your leads are going to be gold.
JS- Hey, that's just crazy enough to work!
CC- So, I've got a half dozen Hispanic actors for you to play gang members he encounters along the way, a Korean shop owner he runs into, a Hitler worshiping army surplus shop owner, and a gap-toothed manager of a fast-food place.
JS- I'm with you so far.
CC- And you said Duvall's a cop, right? We'll get him an over the top police Captain who hates his guts and an overbearing wife. Now how about a partner?
JS- He doesn't have a partner.
CC- Perfect. We'll push him together with a younger female cop who already has a really obnoxious chauvinistic male partner.
JS- What good will that do?
CC- It'll make Duvall look caring and sensitive by comparison.
JS- This is brilliant! How can I ever thank you?
CC- I've actually got a screenplay of my own called Batman and Robin.
Hamlin Grade: 5
Big Daddy Yum Yum
It's time to hop in the Way-Back Machine and revisit one of the true classics of bad cinema; Barbarella Queen of the Galaxy. From the opening credits you know you're in for something special. Say what you will about Jane Fonda as an actress, but she was hot. I can guarantee you that almost no one reads the opening credits as Fonda (Barbarella) does a zero gravity striptease. The glimpses are fleeting, but tasty, and the film goes out of the way to expose as much of Fonda as possible in every scene. Her outfits would make Bettie Page envious.
At the opening, we find Barbarella lounging about her shagedelic spacecraft. This place has all the finest trappings of the decade of love even though we are in the year 40,000 AD. Shag carpets, lava lamps, psychedelic colors, you name it, it’s in this movie. She receives orders to rescue a scientist named Durand-Durand (yes, Duran Duran took their name from this movie and that makes me respect them just a wee bit more) from the evil clutches of The Black Queen (Anita Pallenberg.) The circumstances are dire as he has invented a powerful weapon that threatens the universe. She must use all of her powers to save him.
And what powers might those be, you ask? She only has one, the obvious one, of course; her sexuality. The movie is just one long excuse for her to go from one sexual relationship to another, and to get her in as many different skin-tight outfits as possible. Outstanding! And the sets, costumes and special effects are supremely ridiculous. I just can’t believe that anyone had the balls to green-light the project back then. These days there’s talk of a remake starring Drew Barrymore. I can only believe that’s going to be a big old flop.
This is camp with a capital C. Fonda’s blandness as an actress actually work quite nicely here, and nothing in the movie takes itself too seriously. Do look for the creepy children and their dolls near the beginning of the film, and do look for Marcel Marceau as Professor Ping. There's a good reason this guy turned to the sublime art of mime.
Hamlin Grade: 6
Big Daddy Yum Yum
Let's play a little game I like to call, "Who was most responsible for making this a bad movie?" There are so many actors to choose from. Take a look at this cast; Kurt Russell, Courtney Cox, Christian Slater, Kevin Pollak, David Arquette, Jon Lovitz, Howie Long, Thomas Hayden Church, Bokeem Woodbine, Ice T and last, but certainly not least, Kevin Costner. This is going to be so much fun, I hate all of these people. Let the bad acting begin!
Let's take care of the plot first. Costner and his gang of baddies (and you know they're bad because they all smoke, drink while they drive and have their collars turned up) are traveling to Vegas under the guise of taking part in International Elvis Week. Their real aim is to knock off a casino. Things turn bad, they start knocking each other off and it becomes a movie about who will survive and end up with the money. Pretty tried and true stuff, how bad could it be?
Spectacularly bad! Let's start out with Russell, Costner, Arquette, Slater and Woodbine all trying to pull off an Elvis impersonation. Yah, and maybe a monkey will fly out of my butt. Russell, that wunderkind of agelessness, is finally starting to look really old. What's remarkable about that is that Costner looks so much older and pathetic by comparison. But Costner takes his Elvis very seriously, because his character, Thomas J. Murphy, believes himself to be the illegitimate child of the King. Dressing like Elvis and taking yourself seriously. Riiight.
Michael Zane, played by Russell, shows up after finishing up a five year stint in the stir. Cybil Waingrow (who was put in charge of the character names by the way?), played by Cox, immediately jumps in bed with Russell with her son in the next room. Way to go. That's two checks on the worst mother ever list. Russell doesn't stick around long as it's “go time” at the casino. In a ludicrous scene, the boys get away with the heist while simultaneously shooting up the entire casino and leaving countless corpses behind. Despite being completely surrounded, they only suffer one casualty; Franklin, played by Bokeem Woodbine, buys the big ticket to Dirt City. They killed the brother first?! Bokeem certainly deserved to die, he had a hand in making this a bad movie, but he simply didn't last long enough. Bokeem, you're off the hook.
The boys get back to the hotel and start bickering over the money. This is Slater's big scene. I hate Slater, surely I can blame this film on him? Nope, he's done away with in short shrift, so he too is off the hook. They go out into the desert to get rid of the body and Costner offs Russell and Arquette as well. Damn, I'm running out of people to blame this movie on. Don't worry, Russell's not dead. I don't know how he managed to get top billing over that egomaniac Costner, but the film's not going to kill off their star that quickly, he'll be back. It's at about this point in the movie that the FBI enters the scene. Cue Thomas Hayden Church and Kevin Pollak. I'd like to blame the movie on them, I have hatred in my heart for both of these actors, but they simply aren't given enough to do. They do win the collective award for random character choices, however, with Church choosing to wear obscenely large belt buckles and Pollack having a lighter which will never work. That's awesome guys!
I'd also like to blame the movie on Cox who goes out of her way to prove just how bad a mother she can be. She's also looking like she's been ridden hard and put away wet, and yet this movie is also not her fault. Jon Lovitz and Ice T attempt to come in late and steal the credit, but despite their best attempts they just can't distract from the worst actor in the world, Kevin Costner. This role, once again, proves that any success he's had in the past has been pure luck. He puts the u in suck and nothing, just nothing can be bad enough to distract the audience from his lameness.
The only bright spot in this film is David Kaye, who plays Cox's son Jesse. He has an uncanny resemblance to Ralph Macchio, but the kid actually has some skills. Costner tries to explain things at the end of the film by telling him, "He's a bad guy, kid (referring to Russell), maybe not as bad as me, but he's a bad guy." That's right, Kevin, no one is as bad as you.
I give this film a single Costner...er, Hamlin.
Hamlin Grade: 1
Big Daddy Yum Yum
I'm not sure if I remember the entire TV promo which was on WGN around 12 years ago, when I saw Cyborg as a discriminating viewer. However I do remember for sure the TV saying "Van Damme, he's got big muscles!" Of course this ringing endorsement is something you must remember when watching this classic Van Damme action flick because Van Damme does have big muscles. You know what he also has? A big mullet wig (see the Melmet)! A blonde one too, just to make sure things are ridiculous enough the head villain wears sunglasses, chainmail and sports hair oily enough to raise the brow of Mickey Rourke. In all regards Cyborg is inarguably one of Van Damme's funniest moments.
I don't even know where to start with this one. Well I guess I can start with the hilarious beginning which had me in stitches. We see a cyborg (who looks strangely like a supermodel) who is being escorted with some David Hasselhoff looking protector who says "Get going Pearl, I'll try and hold the pirates here!"... now this might seem like a good idea until you realize that the Hasselhoff lookalike gets his ass thorughly whumped by a woman in a furcoat. Also for some unfathomable reason the pirates jump through the windows screaming to sneak up behind the Hasselhoff lookalike, while they wait for their chainmall boss to talk to the Hasselhoff rather than just killing him right away. The exchange goes something like this to wit:
"Let her go!"
"She has the cure!"
"I wanna own it!"
"Go to hell!"
What makes this sequence so hilarious is that Albert Pyun somehow overdoes the slow motion which of course makes the action so exaggerated and hilariously phony that laughter is the only appropriate response. For some reason Pyun gives us a slow motion knife clanking against the ground which doesn't really heighten the mood. Another classic slow motion sequence is when we get various closeups of the pirates watching Van Damme and his girlfriend have sex. I guess it's supposed to signify something as we see Van Damme kiss the neck of a shorthaired southern accented woman, and their cuddling right before in big dramatic fashion the pirates move the curtains in slow motion. However they aren't just peeping toms, since their method of slaughter is basically tying Van Damme, his girlfriend and the girlfriend's son in a bucket that is to be dropped into a well, and they have the girlfriend's daughter hold barbwire and cut her hands while letting the bucket drop in the well in slow motion. Of course i'm not going to give anything away but Van Damme survives but his other family members don't and it's here we learn his motivation of revenge. Also this sequence is repeated about 4 times for no other reason but to stretch out running time. Also it's in exaggerated slow motion. (Pyun is no John Woo!) So in the process we see Van Damme take on mutants who wear football pads, chainmail, leather and sleeveless shirts. Not to put the kebosh on anyone's party but they look pretty gay!
But that's not all! The best slow motion sequence of the entire movie is when Van Damme dispatches the big muscular pirate. Now because Van Damme didn't show us his ass (see Van DAMN!!), he did give us a sequence in which he did the splits and while doing the splits he stabs a huge muscular pirate in slow motion. All of this is heightened by the godawful music score which is strangely composed of synthasizer, symbols and harp(!) all of this is apparently supposed to give this a fairy tale feel but it only serves to make the movie all the more laughable. The music score exaggerates the melodrama so much, it becomes downright hilarious. Especially that we get to hear lots of grunts, screams, thuds and knifes carving flesh.
Jean-Claude Van Damme sadly never did another post apoclypse movie, although he did show true creativity by playing a characted named Gibson. I mean it's a direct homage to the guy who started it all with Mad Max. However it gets better, the main bad guy is named Fender. The female sidekick to Van Damme's lone wolf, her last name is Simmons and all in all, the characters are named after gutars. Oh and for another little special treat the gun that Van Damme fires? Well it turns out it's an old school paintball gun, that I even had. In fact Van Damme can be seen loading in another Co2 cartridge for no other reason than the set designers simply couldn't afford a more futuristic looking gun. Although I admit, seeing Van Damme yell "Fuck" before wacking a guy with his paintball gun, er I mean futuristic pistol, put a huge smile on my face. Cyborg is absolutely sublime in it's ineptitude. The greatest part in the movie comes late in the film, when Van Damme is eluding the big muscular pirate (The one he kills while doing the splits) while running after Van Damme, the muscular pirate actually slips and almost falls straight on his face. Also the ending involves Van Damme finding his girlfriend's daughter and declining the offer to stay with the cyborg because "They need us out there!" We obviously don't know what the pirates did to brainwash Van Damme's girlfriend's daughter but i'm guessing that had the pirates not stopped Van Damme, there would've been some inappropriate conduct among stepfather and stepdaughter. I mean the whole ending seems to consist of Van Damme writing off into the sunset with his girlfriend's daughter. A little creepy, perhaps but I guess that if you have repopulate the entire planet, all terms of decency go straight out the window. Cyborg is indeed a true thinking man's movie. How this got robbed at oscar time, is a question that still gives me sleepless nights.
Hamlin Grade: 6.5
Ahhhhh, the 1980s. The decade that gave us 3-D, Ninjas, a couple of shitty films based on an irritating unfunny Australian redneck comedian, and Michael J. Fox. 20 years ago, Michael J. Fox was the Ben Stiller (see Stillered) of his time, never turning down a project that was offered to him regardless of the lack of quality. Fox lent his talents to endless scores of films, television series and specials....there was no limit to his generosity. One such project that was sprayed with a liberal coating of the sweet Fox.....Teen Wolf.
Teen Wolf follows the exploits of Scott Howard (Fox), a high school kid, who is for the most part unpopular, and shitty player on his schools, very shitty basketball team. BAMM! Scott hits puberty, and discovers that he is a werewolf, and suddenly becomes the most popular kid in school, an amazing basketball player, and helps propel his team to greatness.
First off, what the fuck is wrong with the people at this high school? Michael J. Fox in werewolf costume, looks less like a wolf, and more like a retarded version of Chaka from the 70s TV series Land of the Lost (and Chaka was already very retarded looking). So as the mutant, half-shaved, Cousin It, dog thing that he has become, he is now loved by everyone in school, and the most popular girl in school of course wants to bed him. First lesson kids, achieving popularity in high shcool is just a chewbacca costume away!
As the Wolf, Scott of course slowly begins to become a total dick. While his stock begins to rise, his true friends (who liked Scott for what he was.....this movie is filled with cringe chills) begin to feel rejected and eventually grow to dislike the new Yeti version of Scott. But fuck them! Scott is popular now! Scott heads to the high school dance as the wolf in a Saturday Night Fever style white suit and leads an uncomfortably embarrassing, semi-choreographed dance sequence with the entire school (I imagine if kidney stones were passed through your eyes, this is what it would feel like).....the wolf dance. Scott's new found fame, also lands him a role with school's theatre group, as a civil war general in some Gone with the Wind type epic.......this in turn gets him laid. Lesson two.....looking like King Kong on chemo-therapy will get you tons and tons of ass. Man I gotta find out where this school is.
Once Scott realizes that all of his friends think he's an asshole, he decides to not be the wolf any longer. And perhaps less of an asshole. To the dismay of the school, he makes this declaration minutes before the championship basketball game, where the wolf has essentially carried them. Scott delivers a heart-felt 'we don't need the wolf' speech that was so powerful, I've heard Bill Parcells has used it multiple times to motivate his players. Will Scott and his team be able to win the championship without the Wolf? Of course. This overly predictable, cut and past storyline was layed out before the opening credits finished running.
Teen Wolf is a tragedy of unimaginable levels. Why is a dork who becomes a Wolf suddenly popular? What makes the girls at this high school want to throw their panties off at the site of this bearded man thing? Why hasn't the National Guard been called in to tranquilize and subdue this furry piece of shit? I mean what the fuck? If a black bear goes through the trash in my neighborhood the cops unload military grade ordinance in it's ass. This wolf guy is surfing atop motor vehicles, scaring the shit ouf of liquor shop owners, and soiling the young ladies of this town with his dirty, flea-ridden, sasquatch cock!
Aside from staring at the freakish make-up job that Michael J. Fox sports, there is little reason to watch Teen Wolf. And really, that reason, is not really a good reason. Now if you really hate yourself, there is a Teen Wolf sequel, entitled Teen Wolf Too. So clever! I shit you not by the way. Same story, same concept, just replace Michael J. Fox with Jason Bateman.....who in the 1980's was essentially Michael J. Fox lite. Teen Wolf Too really is the same exact feature, and exemplifies Guttenberg's Principle, as no one from the original film, other than the fat guy called Chubby, has returned to reprise their roles. The brains behind Teen Wolf must have been trying so hard to cash in on the original movies name, that they basically repackaged the first film into a second glorious pile of cow feces. Mission Accomplished!
Hamlin Grade: 1.5
Timothy Dalton is the one true James Bond,
1991 provided one of my favorite bad movies, Hudson Hawk. Bruce Willis not only stars, but also helped write the story and was the executive producer to this retarded action comedy. The antics used are those of the Three Stooges, and the movie is as close to a cartoon as a live action movie can get. The word zany is not prevalent in my vernacular, but it is the best word I can think of to describe Hudson Hawk. Willis and his fellow producers were able to assemble an impressive cast for such a ridiculous premise, and Director Michael Lehmann somehow manages to pull unlikely performances from these thespians. How impressive? Take a look.
Danny Aiello sings a show tune along with Willis while stealing art. Then there's priceless banter such as, "The last time you saw me I was bald, beard with no mustache, and I had a different nose. So if you don't recognize me, I won't be offended," spoken by James Coburn as George Kaplan. He heads up a team of CIA operatives he has named after candy bars. David Caruso gives us a nonsensical appearance of Agent Kit-Kat. This is shortly before he gave us a nonsensical performance in Jade. Andy MacDowell provides her best impression of a dolphin. Far more enticing than her actual voice. The following quote may give you a sense of the inflated ego of Darwin Mayflower as played by Richard E. Grant; "History, tradition, culture.... are not concepts! These are trophies I keep in my den as paper weights!" His wife, played by Sandra Bernhard gives a disturbing rendition of "I've got the Power." And let us not forget that the movie also features Frank Stallone. Enough said.
Museum robberies, show tunes, a gurney chase over the Brooklyn Bridge, a toll booth on said bridge, a knife wielding butler, David Caruso as a mime, a nun falling for a convict, the word rape used as a punch line?!?! If
that's not zany I don't know what that word means.
Hamlin Grade: 5.5
Fletch is a killing word!
One of our newest Bad Movie Knights, Ryan (welcome to the fold sir), suggested a glossary term that covers Belgium's finest martial artist, and gift to the world.....Jean Claude Van Damme.
Mr. Van Damme has forged a successful film career base solely on kicking the shit out of people and doing leg splits and for 20 years, he has starred in over 30 features and managed to avoiding acting in every single one of them.
Jean Claude Van Damme has left his mark (or stain, depending upon your point of view) on Hollywood, much in the same manner that Arnold Schwarzenegger has. He doesnt just follow the formulaic action movie model, but he has also created a tag line for which his fans can always remember him. No, Van Damme doesn't say "I'll be back!" during every feature (most likely because he can't....the man can barely speak), rather Van Damme embraces the silence, and finds a way to remove his pants and fully display his glistening buttocks. Van Damme's calling card has always been unneccessarily showcasing his award winning ass on the big screen in just about every film he has ever been in.
Van DAMN!! is defined as that moment in a film when a male ass is presented for an unnaturally extended length of time. If you find yourself staring at a pair of well sculpted, recently oiled, freshly shaven male buttocks for longer than a second and knowingly not rented gay porn....then you have been Van DAMNED!!
Note: This glossary term does not apply in any way to Patrick Swayze films, he get's a pass.....cuz come on....it's Swayze!
Timothy Dalton is the one true James Bond,
A team is not a team if you don't give a damn about each other! Really? What if that team is made up of a bunch of assholes who can't act, a shitty director, and a screenwriter who should be shot? If such a team made a movie would you give a damn about it? You bet your fuckin' ass you would!
Best of the Best, stars Eric Roberts, who as a poster boy for the Bad Movie Knights, has flown under the radar for far too long.....you day has come sir. Bend over Eric, this is really gonna hurt. The cast of Best of the Best, is for the most part insignificant, aside from James Earl Jones. Why the fuck was he in this? Simple answer : The Fonda Syndrome. James Earl Jones' family was held captive till he completed filming Best of the Best.....it is the only reason an actor of his calibre would be in this ass wart of a movie. After Jones, the actor quality drops off like an 85 year old breast. Chris Penn who stars as Travis Brickley, is just beginning to show signs of his ever increasing density that will one day claim his life, and Sally Kirkland who plays Wade (some hippy, meditation freak), is desperately trying to hold onto her looks which she probably lost some 20 years earlier....she starts to look like a skeleton wrapped in Saran Wrap...I digress.
Best of the Best is about a group of unlikely candidates who tryout for the United States Karate Team and will eventually face off against the Korean National Team in Seoul. The best thing about Best of the Best.....well the fight scenes are pretty decent, and watching the Korean team break baseball bats with their dicks is very impressive. The acting is by far the cornerstone of this film. Even James Earl mails it in, or over does it. There's a possible drinking game buried in here for Big Daddy. Every time JEJ says the word 'TEAM'. Now, in the movie he pronounces it 'TEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEM'. Brilliant. And Eric.....oh Eric. Not only can't the man act, he can't speak. How does an individual with a speech impediment become a Hollywood actor? Roberts sounds like he's always talking with a cock in his mouth (i know this because Fletch sounds the same way....when he's chugging pork sword). Top that off with the acting skills of corpse with a car battery shoved up its ass, and you have Eric Roberts. Roberts almost pulls off the Ironside Agenda, especially when acting with Phillip Rhee, who plays Tommy Lee (stick to martial arts bro....seriously...you are done, stop trying to act).....but really that is just comparing two scoops of shit.....they both stink. The amazing thing about Eric Roberts.... he's a successful actor. He must have photos of some Hollywood executive sucking off a goat because there really is no explanation for his continued work. His filmography is one that might amaze, and could be a gold mine for us here at Bad Movie Knights.
Ok, back to the movie. Coach Cuzo (Jones) puts together his karate team, which consists of Alex Grady (Eric Roberts), who has a reconstructed shoulder which they spare no effort in pointing out so you know he's gonna have that fucker broken again, Travis Brickley (Penn) a fat guy from Texas who likes to fight, Virgil (doesn't really matter who played him) a hippy of questionable sexuality, and Sonny (who cares), some reject from Grease who likes to hit on chicks. Unite them with Wade (Sally Kirkland) and you have a recipe for success......or in the case Best of the Best.
Best of the Best follows the standard fight / drama / action formula as it overwhelms you with training montage after training montage, shows you the conflicts within as the 5 individuals try to find a way to work together, thrusts the personal problems that wear on the individuals, and how they fight to recover from them, until five minutes before the match, they magically put it all together. Yeah. You should have a tear in your eye at this point, or diarreah.
Yay we're a team now! Yay! Let's go to Korea and get the shit kicked out of us because they really don't care how much we love each other! Remember, these are the same Koreans that break baseball bats with their cocks....do you really think a TEEEEEEEEM of American Karate boys is going to frighten them? Certainly not. Virgil, and Sonny who were pretty much filler for the movie, provide the same during the final tournament. Both of them get their asses handed to them by Team Iron Cock. Travis (Penn) actually puts up a decent fight but loses in the martial arts equivalent of a shootout, which is breaking bricks.....you can almost here the fight music playing in the background......is the tide turning? Perhaps? Next up is Alex Grady (Roberts) who pretty much kicks the shit out of his opponent till the guy does this ridiculous drop kick to.....you guessed it! His surgically repaired shoulder. Who the fuck saw that coming? Not me! Now the next minute and a half are probably Robert's finest on screen moments ever. Screaming like a little Dakota Fanning, Robert's refuses to submit and forfeit the match, and request's the Tommy relocate the shoulder for him by saying "POP IT TOMMY! POP IT! POP IT! POP IT!".....and so he does....it is popped. After another ball shrinking scream, he again harnesses his inner Deniro and requests that his arm be secured for the rest of the match by saying "TAPE IT UP! TAPE IT! TAPE IT UUUUUPPPPPP!" And then there was tape. With seconds remaining in the match, and only one arm, Alex Grady ends up winning the match by knocking his opponent right off the platform. In real life I believe that Korean fighter would have been executed following the match, along with his family and pets.
The final match of the movie is between Tommy Lee and Korean Champion Dae Han. Dae Han has never been beaten, oh and here's an interesting tidbit....Dae Han killed Tommy's brother in competition when he was just a young lad. Dae Han also wears an eye patch which is synonymous with evil....just like being from Jupiter...or Wisconsin. Tommy and Dae Han have a back and forth battle before Tommy gets the eye of the tiger and kicks it up a notch. He rallies and eventually has Dae Han standing defenceless in the middle of the ring. Tommy considers ending Dae Han's life by setting up for his death kick (he does this foot turn thing which as you know means death kick...it's all about the death kick)......this maneuver of course requires a wonderful thespian response from Jones and Roberts. Grady shouts out "TOMMY NO! COACH HE'S GONNA KILL HIM!!!" to which Coach Cuzo adds " NOOOOO. TOMMMMY NO!!!!". You should be pissing yourself with laughter by now, or from drinking too much, either way its' all good....it's the death kick. Tommy of course pussy's out and disgraces his brother by not getting revenge, and loses the match by one point. Or maybe two. Who cares. Death kick!
Best of the Best is ruined at the end during the medal ceremony. The Korean team having won recieves there medals, and Dae Han approaches Tommy, in tears and apologizes for killing his brother. Tommy weeps and the two embrace.....oh yeah thats hot....hmmmm are you satisfied Rammm? The rest of the Korean team and American team follow suit, and the karate tournament becomes a 10 man lovefest. Brokeback Karate Tournament?
Best of the Best is one of the finest bad movies available. It doesn't get consumed like other films do with direction, or story, and all of that tiresome acting, instead it personifies one simple message. Death kick! If you are a Bad Movie Night virgin, or you and your friends are planning your own Bad Movie Night, I highly recommend this film be on the card. Best of the Best is the death kick of bad movies. Death Kick! Fucking love that word!
Hamlin Grade: 7
Timothy Dalton is the one true James Bond,
From the Post-Apocalyptic collection of movies, comes a work that brings us back to the ABC's of bad movies; none other than 2019: After The Fall Of New York. Our hero, Parsifal (Michael Sopkiw), with his sexy five o'clock shadow, wears a leather headband that holds down a mullet of unparalleled magnitude. No really, it looks as though a dead animal sits upon his head! A small and sexy price to pay to survive a nuclear war. Parsifal is the reigning champion of the Nevada race of Death or "Death Race" (you've got to love it!)
After adding another victory notch to his belt, he is hit by a stun ray (graphic provided by the Atari 2600, nice!). What is left of the Pan American Confederacy has recruited Parsifal, against his will, to infiltrate Manhattan to rescue the only fertile women left on Earth (you got it, just like Escape from New York, but worse, far worse!). A nuclear holocaust has baked the big apple into a shadow of its former self. This is made painfully obvious from the cardboard cutout made to represent New York. It's wonderfully bad! Wearing black fencing helmets and capes, the evil Euraks control the city upon their white steeds with their laser crossbows (no disrespect to Chewbacca, but why is a crossbow necessary in laser form?) The Euraks are so evil, they sometimes unwind by hunting the residents of the island. When this occurs, they will usually enlist the help of mercenaries in the form of the Village People to join in on the carnage. Truly a sight to behold!
To assist Parsifal in his navigation of this deadly gauntlet is Bronx, Pablo Maria Scalondro, who is missing an arm, and Ratchet, Romano Puppo, who's only got one eye. Say what you will, but a hook and a patch look cool! The Needle people, led by the Rat Eater King, will be hard to get past. And The Sewer Dwarfs, are they friend or foe? Big Ape, George Eastman, in his swash-buckling gear and his gang who are donned in the costumes rejected from Planet of the Apes series, look menacing! Let us not forget the evil Euraks! Will Parsifal and his friends survive? Could there be love found in such a desolate place? Getting in was the easy part, getting out may be impossible! 2019: After The Fall Of New York, is the kind of bad movie for which this site was designed! Warning: the dubbing in this film may cause side effects to viewers.
Hamlin Grade: 7.5
Fletch is a killing word!
No this isn't a joke. Yes, Marvel Entertainment Group did make a movie about Captain America. Well, I guess you could call it a movie for lack of a more appropriate description.
Captain America is probably Marvel's best kept secret, and one they would love to forget. However, as Bad Movie Knights, we are skilled in the arts of war....and military tactics.....no wait, that was the lover of Edward the Longshanks fag son from Braveheart....we are skilled in the art of the bad movie. My friends, Captain America is a truly bad movie. Holy shit it fucking sucks.
Without sounding like a complete loser, Captain America is one of the coolest characters in the Marvel Universe, if not all comic book universes (I realize the irony of this statement, not only admitting my love of a fictional character, but for comic books as well.....do your worst assholes). As a young man, Steve Rogers agreed to some experimental testing, where he was administered the 'super soldier' serum, and was reborn Captain America. Stronger, faster and more intelligent than he was, he became a symbol of freedom for the USA and helped defeat the Germans in World War II. During one of the last battles of WWII, Captain America jumped onto a nuclear missile to prevent it from hitting it's designated target, the United States of America. Upon some clever sabotage Captain America successfully splashed the missile into the Arctic where he was frozen until present day. He was revived by the Avengers and joined them to continued his mission to fight the good fight.
Captain America is played by Mat Salinger. Who? Well his only other starring role that I recall was playing quarterback Danny Burke in Revenge of the Nerds. The interesting thing about Salinger, is that he is the son of J.D. Salinger, the famed author of The Catcher in the Rye, and the sci-fi epic Battlefield Earth. I'm just fucking with you, he didn't write The Catcher in the Rye. The only other famous dude in this film, is the President of the United States Tom Kimball, played by Ronny Cox. Again Who? Well, Mr. Cox's most famous roles included Dick Jones from Robocop, and Vilos Cohaagen from Total Recall. His filmography is actually very impressive, and you will probably recognize him if you are ever stupid enough to actually watch this pile of cow droppings.
While the movie Captain America does cover his origin for the most part, it stops just short of the Avengers, as he is revived by a group of Artic archaeologists instead. Captain America does face off against his arch-nemesis the Red Skull, although the arch-nemesis tag never really develops in this. He is basically portrayed as an asshole with a bad complexion. The Red Skull kidnaps the President of the United States (which is a very simple task), and Captain America fights to rescue him. At the end, Cap and the Prez fight side by side.....I'm cringing right now thinking about it. "Great job Mr. President!"
The budget on Captain America, while completely wasted, must have been next to nothing. Virtually no expense was spared on special effects. Good thing, because there were no special effects. Hell, there was no story, no acting, no direction, no boobs....Captain America offers you nothing except for a few really poorly sung theme songs, that I think even Frank Stallone makes fun of. Even Captain America's costume was a disaster. You'd think they'd throw a few bucks into the symbol of the whole movie? Nope. Mat Salinger was stuffed into a wetsuit that was not only too small, but spray painted to look like the comic character. The mask was so fucking tight, that Salinger's nose is crushed to his face, and his cheeks and mouth were spilling out of the openings like a bran muffin. This is actually the best part of the movie. Watching this poor bastard limp around in a body condomn fighting bad guys. Brilliant. Oh and Captain America's shield. It's the same one you can buy on Ebay that's made from plastic. No expense spared.
Let me spare you this. Don't watch this movie.
Hamlin Grade: .5
Timothy Dalton is the one true James Bond,