Friday, June 21, 2013

Silent Hill: Revelation (2012)

Number Rolled: 88
Movie Name/Year: Silent Hill: Revelation (2012)
Genre: Horror
Length: 94 minutes
Rating: R
Director: Michael J. Bassett
Writer: Michael J. Bassett, Laurent Hadida, Konami
Actors: Adelaide Clemens, Kit Harington, Carrie-Anne Moss, Sean Bean, Radha Mitchell, Malcolm McDowell, Martin Donovan, Deborah Kara Unger, Roberto Campanella, Erin Pitt, Peter Outerbridge, Heather Marks

Heather is plagued by nightmares of some place called, “Silent Hill.” That would be bad enough but, on top of that, she and her father are on the run from the police. It’s a bad situation as she tries to grasp control of the hallucinations and feeling of instability that comes from constantly moving around. When her father is kidnapped, she befriends a boy named Vincent who agrees to help her find him; even if it means going to the mysterious Silent Hill.

I would like to preface this by saying that I am not going to judge this movie based on how well it may or may not have stood up to the games. Although I enjoy watching the horror genre, and even enjoy the actual arcade games, I do not divulge in the console versions. I’ll feed quarters to a House of the Dead machine but give it to me on a console and I suddenly have no interest. It’s just a different dynamic. In other words, I’ve never played the games. I’ve watched other people play parts of them, I just don’t have the first hand knowledge of how well the two forms of the story stand up next to each other.

That being said, I’m still in love with the storyline from what I’ve seen and heard and, even if the movie didn’t stick to it word for word, it certainly stuck to the spirit of it.

Horror is easy. Anyone can create your basic horror movie; add a bad guy, some blood, a whole lot of running and something innocent to compare it to. What makes a horror movie impressive is the level of suspense a writer or director can elicit in their audience. Both Silent Hill films master that idea.

I’d love to be able to mix up my reviews a little a give you guys a bad movie to read about, but I’m on a lucky streak with my dice rolls. For a few weeks now I’ve been getting some really good movies. Even the ones that are “supposed” to be bad, according to the critics, have been outstanding. “Silent Hill: Revelation” is one of those movies that was supposed to be bad but just wasn’t.

I do get what some of the critics were saying this time. There were some things that were a bit confusing or that left out anyone that hadn’t played the game. Some of the storyline also seems a bit rushed. I can’t argue either of those facts. When my best friend and I are watching a movie, we turn into the robots from Mystery Science Theater 3000, and we were saying some of the same things before I ever looked up the other reviews. Still, as I watched this rushed story with confusing factors, I was still completely entertained and thoroughly freaked out by what was supposed to freak me out.

I understand that a hardcore horror-genre gamer might be infuriated with the way the Silent Hill franchise was portrayed, but I’m not that kind of gamer. I enjoyed it. Still, I won’t be sleeping until the sun is safely shining through my window.

Overall Opinion – 4/5

P.S. Adelaide Clemens reminds me of a young Michelle Williams.

P.P.S. Obviously, based on the video game franchise of “Silent Hill.”

P.P.S.S. There’s a VERY small scene after the credits. I didn’t think it was worth it, but you should know it was there.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Noobz (2013)

Number Rolled: 99
Movie Name/Year: Noobz (2013)
Genre: Comedy
Length: 100 minutes
Rating: R
Director: Blake Freeman
Writer: Blake Freeman, Marvin Wilson
Actors: Blake Freeman, Moises Arias, Jason Mewes, Casper Van Dien, Jon Gries, Lin Shaye, Carly Craig, Sabrina Carpenter, Mindy Sterling, Richard Speight Jr., Matt Shively, Zelda Williams, Bill Bellamy, Rick Overton, Adam Sessler, Chenese Lewis, Pride Grinn, Paul J. Ballin, Fabian Alomar,

Cody, Andy, Oliver and Hollywood make up the Reign Clan, which is one of the top four groups in Gears of War 3. As such hardcore gamers tend to do, they enter a competition. Traveling by car, they collect the members of their team and head to Los Angeles as a kind of road trip. Along the way they learn one of their team is not who he says he was, hook up with an arcade champion (Greg Lipstein), and get into a bit of trouble.

If I hadn’t just seen “This is the End” I would have said I hadn’t laughed this hard since “Clerks.” “Noobz” is a brilliant, and hilarious, movie that takes a look at the lives of modern gamers, and arcade gamers, looking to compete in the modern gaming community. The movie doesn’t pull any punches and we get to see the lifestyle as it actually is; filled with true hardcore gamers, twelve year olds that are way too good at smack-talk, people who lie about themselves on the internet and the general misogyny that surrounds the gaming community. The tongue-in-cheek humor is woven throughout almost every line of the script and nods are given to some well known movies and games. I started laughing about a minute in and it didn’t die down until the credits started rolling. Of course, then they played some bloopers and I just wound up laughing some more.

From the perspective of a gamer that acknowledges the bad parts of the lifestyle as much as the good, I absolutely love this movie. I just finished watching it and I’m seriously contemplating starting it over again. I would, too, if I hadn’t agreed to meet a friend on DC Universe Online.

Critics trashed this movie. I’d say I don’t get it, but I do. At least, I’m starting to. I see a pattern with these people. Any movie that has the nerve to laugh at itself and its subject or that just generally takes a light-hearted stance, instead of a serious one, gets trashed. It’s stupid. It’s like everything’s got to make you cry or it wasn’t worth making. You know what I say? Fuck that and fuck them. Critics be damned, I’m calling it now – this movie is going cult.

Blake Freeman is a genius and I never would have guessed this was his first time directing, producing or writing a full length film. This wasn’t even just amazing for a first time, it was amazing over all.

Overall Opinion – 5/5

Monday, June 17, 2013

Eye of the Beast (2007)

Number Rolled: 67
Movie Name/Year: Eye of the Beast (2007)
Genre: Horror
Length: 90 minutes
Rating: NR
Director: Gary Yates
Writer: Mark Mullin
Actors: James Van Der Beek, Alexandra Castillo, Arne MacPherson, Ryan Rajendra Black, Brian Edward Roach, Larissa Tobacco, Kyra Harper, Kelly Wolfman, Ryland Thiessen, Rick Skene, Sharon Bajer, Brooke Palsson, Blake Taylor, Erik Fjeldsted, Stephen Eric McIntyre, Gabriel Daniels, Akulu Meekis, Alicia Johnston, Daina Leitold

Dan Leland is a NORA scientist that travels to a remote village in order to try and discern what is depleting the fish population in the area. The fishermen don’t trust him, believing he’s there looking for a reason to shut down the fishery and the natives don’t trust him because he hasn’t yet given them a reason to. He meets up with Cat, an officer in charge of the lake, and they form an alliance to attempt to get to the bottom of things.

This right here is what I believe a creature feature should be! In fact, it is my favorite of the genre since Jurassic Park. It’s a B-Movie so it managed to endear itself to me without the amazing and flawless graphics.

Kevin Smith once said that he was glad he’d had a small budget for Clerks because it forced him to be creative about the way he did things. I believe this movie, much like Clerks, benefited from the smaller budget. The people working on this movie knew they didn’t have the money to make a graphically phenomenal giant squid, so they worked around it. They didn’t try to force the situation. You see the work of forced graphics, where greatness cannot be achieved, in movies like, “Mega Shark vs. Crocosaurus.” That kind of force makes a movie seem more like a joke than anything else could. In “Eye of the Beast,” they concentrated more on the story than the actual squid – which reminded me a bit of “Jaws.”

There was great acting, especially for a B-Movie, a storyline that had no shortage of suspense and a script that utilized what we expect in order to become unexpected. If you’re looking for a Creature Feature, this is a really good one to start with.

I just had one major problem with it. At one point, one of the characters needed to feel for a pulse. Either the director or the actor screwed up because just about everyone knows you don’t check for a pulse in the middle of the throat.

Overall Opinion – 4/5