DOOooooooooM!

Doom 01

[THE CHALK-OUTLINE]

Doom [Unrated Extended Edition](2005): Breakdown by Rantbo

Space Marines battle alien monsters that killed off a colony. Sounds familiar…

[THE EXECUTION]

Based off of one of the Most Bad-Ass Mother-Fucking Games of ALL Fucking Time, and featuring striking similarities to James Cameron’s Masterpiece, ALIENS, the question is, how does this movie fair in comparison to it’s inspirations? Answer—Not so good. BUT, it’s still far from a complete shit-burger.

The rail-thin story is as follows: A portal was discovered on Earth capable of transporting people and items to an ancient civilization on Mars. Naturally, a scientific colony soon followed and inhuman experiments commenced and some spooky demon shit occurs and a team of ass-kickers is sent in to remedy the situation. And, as you would expect, the shit hits the teleportation device and the team gets fucked like a space sailor on shore leave.

Doom 02

The problems begin with the fact that this movie doesn’t take much at all after the game. The only idea they seemed to fancy was a bit of first person pov and the look of the game’s imp creatures. Oh, and the BFG. But that last one’s in name and size only. Plus, the imps don’t even shoot fireballs, which even if they did, it wouldn’t change the fact that they are easily the lamest enemy from the game. The least they could have done is thrown in a couple of the pink bull-demon things or some acid floors, or something. But, no. Instead you get a bunch of lame horror movie clichés like faulty flashlights and animals popping out of the shadows for over an hour and twenty-five minutes, and then twenty minutes of sheer awesome to make you forget how terribly bland everything you just watched before it was.

There isn’t very much else to really say about this one. I never found it to be slow, but nothing of any real interest or importance happens until the end of the second act, and since I plan on talking about all the awesome parts down below, there isn’t much sense in continuing here. So, to wrap up, DOOM is your average, everyday ALIENS rip-off with a cheesy, though inspired worthwhile ending. I’d recommend it to fans of the sub-genre, but only if you’ve run out of Alien sequels you haven’t seen and already watched EVENT HORIZON.

[HOW BAD-ASS IS THE MAIN CHARACTER?]

Doom 03

Karl Urban is John Grimm, Handle ID: REAPER

A big ‘joke’ of the movie is not knowing just who the real hero of the story will turn out to be. The big musclely beefcake, or the scruffy brooding guy (Urban). And the ‘punch line’ goes so far as to have Dwayne Johnson break the fourth wall and say ‘I’m not supposed to die!” whilst being dragged away by the mutant demons. Leaving us with Karl THE PATHFINDER.

Urban looks as though he performed his entire role straight through, without sleep and after a 3 day bender. Not sure if this is what actually happened, or if it was what he was going for with the character, or door number three, but whatever the case, it works.

Reaper’s general McClane-ian style of ‘this world is bullshit’ apathetic demeanor breaks with pure rage in the face of evil and he begrudgingly puts foot to ass in the name of justice for his departed comrades and to save his hot scientist sister’s glorious gyrating mammary glands (and the rest of her body as well) from demonic destruction.  And in doing so, he riddles a few dozen infected ‘zombie’ people with bullets, annihilates some mutant imps and successfully sends back what the Rock was cooking. With a grenade. Not too shabby.

[THE BODY COUNT: 70ISH]

SPOILER. Everyone dies except for Reaper and Rosamund. Death variations include: Gunshot, head trauma, devoured alive, fire, falling and explosions. And they involve: humans, mutated humans, dogs, rats, monkeys and what ever the Hell Dwayne turned into.

[MOST SATISFYING ASS-KICKING & DEATH]

Reaper vs. Sarge

Doom 04

Both infused with metal and chromosome 24, the former brothers-in-arms dux it out wire-work style and—well, it’s pretty lame. It’s not shot with shaky-cam, but it’s still pretty hard to understand the geography of the scene. Probably has to do with the black-as-Bill-Duke lighting and gravity inconsistency during the goofy body slams. BUT, it’s the best this film has. Well—there was this cool little kill in the FPS sequence where Reaper shoots the hand off a ‘zombie’ holding an axe and the blade falls into his head and then Reaper shoots him in the face. Come to think of it, that’s my most satisfying kill. Forget all the Karl vs. Dwayne bullshit. Sorry, The Rock.

Doom 05

[DUDESWEAT AND MACHISMO]

Very little. Dwayne Johnson does appear shirtless when we fist meet him, but like a PG-13 Teen Sex comedy, they only show his back and side-boob.  Lame. And the rest of the movie pretty much just involves these guys in full space-S.W.A.T. gear trumping around poorly lit metal hallways shining their flashlights on each other. Which sounds like some awesome slumber-party shenanigans, but it isn’t queer enough to register on the ol’ gaydar.

[EXPLOITATION AND MISOGYNY]

As this is the Unrated Extended Edition, they put back in the topless ‘zombie’ chick. Woot.

Doom 06

Other than that, like the D&M section, not much. However, for some reason or another, Rosamund Pike spent the entire film sans bra and some spectacular tit-capades occurred when she walked with purpose through the chilly corridors of the science station. Double-Woot.

[EPIC MOMENT AND BEST ONE-LINER]

Get the Flash Player to see this content.

Copyright held by Universal Pictures. Those lucky bastards.

J/K, It’s THE FUCKING FPS SEQUENCE! What else!?

Doom 07

This shit single-handedly saved this film from sheer mediocrity. Watching this go down on the big screen was so refreshing and fun, especially after the rest of the movie. And it made me wish the whole fuckin’ thing was shot like this. Sure, it probably would have gotten old after about 15 minutes, but at least it would have been a memorable chunk of mediocrity, as apposed to the forgettable chunk it is now.

And here’s the one line you wait the whole movie for…

Doom 08

[THE MORAL OF THE STORY]

Nothing could save Dwayne ‘The Toothfairy’ Johnson’s action career.

Doom 09

Not Even Doom Movie

[THE CHECKLIST: 09 outta 25]

[X] Athlete(s) Turned “Actor” [Dwayne]
[  ] Clinging To The Outside Of A Moving Vehicle
[  ] Crotch Attack
[  ] Dialogue Telling Us How Bad-Ass The Main Character(s) Is/Are
[  ] Ending Featuring An Ambulance, A Blanket or A Towel
[  ] Factory/Warehouse
[X] Giant Explosion(s)
[X] Heavy Artillery
[X] Improvised Weapon(s)
[X] Macho Mode(s) Of Transportation
[  ] Main Character Sports Facial Accessory(s)
[  ] Manly Embrace(s)
[  ] Notorious Stunt-Man Sighting
[  ] Passage(s) Of Time Via Montage
[  ] Politically Fueled Plot Point(s)
[X] Senseless Destruction Of Property
[X] Shoot Out(s) and/or Sword Fight(s)
[  ] Slow-Motion Finishing Move(s)/Death(s)
[X] Stupid Authoritative Figure(s)
[X] Substance Usage and/or Abuse
[  ] Tis The Season
[  ] Torture Sequence(s)
[  ] Unnecessary Sequel
[  ] Vehicle Chase(s)
[  ] Vigilante Justice

Doom 10

“What’s Goin’ On!!!”

Diesel-Fueled Action

Pitch Black

[THE CHALK-OUTLINE]

Pitch Black (2000): Breakdown by Kain424

A spaceship crashes on an unknown world.  After finding out the planet may be teaming with frightening and dangerous lifeforms, the survivors are forced to work together with a murderer who may or may not want to help them at all.

[THE EXECUTION]

With the Action stars of yesteryear waning at the end of the century, Schwarzenegger having mostly left the genre for family-friendly fare, Stallone seemingly heading toward DTV Hell with Lundgren, Snipes, Seagal and Van Damme, fans like me looked out into the sea of dark emptiness, in search of the next big Action hero.  It was in Pitch Black that I thought I’d found him.

The movie itself is a sort of Alien-in-the-open kind of film (though also very similar to the classic western Stagecoach), but with much more emphasis on the characters.  In a short time, and without too much dialog, the movie is able to convince us to fear Diesel’s Riddick character, establishing him as something possibly primordial, less than human.  For a good deal of the film, whenever Diesel is shown, he is out of focus, far in the background, too close in the foreground or, most importantly, in the shadows.  We learn why he stays just out of the light, when the shit hits the fan, and why he may be the only hope these people have.  Diesel clearly relishes the role, playing it at top form, chewing up every moment he’s on screen.

Rid-drink

By working at our societal prejudices and natural need for protection, the film manages to be both clever and captivating.  We understand, at some level, nearly every character almost completely.  And therefore, we can relate.  All of this is established fairly early on, before much of the movie’s action.  And once that begins, the characters are free to perform actions and make choices that are easily understandable.

Suns

The look of Pitch Black is carefully crafted around the story.  The bleached desert feel is replaced by a dark, muddy Hell towards the end, going from wide open spaces to cavernous pathways.  There are wrecked spacecraft parts and abandoned buildings in one half of the film and bones and rain in the next.  This hot and cold change seems natural, but uncomfortable enough to keep things moving.

At times, the effects on the alien creatures aren’t so great and other times the CGI is obvious.  Within ten years, the movie can already be dated because of this, but fortunately, the creatures are largely, like Riddick, kept in the shadows.

Riddick In The Shadows

All in all, the movie still somehow holds up.  Diesel is great, as is the rest of the cast, which includes Radha Mitchell and the always awesome Keith David.  Worth watching for its excellence, but also to see the mighty Action star that could have been.

[HOW BAD-ASS IS THE MAIN CHARACTER?]

Riddick

Vin Diesel is Richard B. Riddick

Fry: “Is he really that dangerous?”

Johns: “Only around humans.”

Riddick is a survivor.  He’s learned to live instinctually, only the most base remains of the uncivilized human mind keep him ticking.  Though he’s never seen to kill anyone in the movie, we learn that he has and feel certain that he would again, if the opportunity presented itself.

Pitch Black

-Can pop his arms out of their socket to escape confinement
-Can see in the dark with his special eyes
-Kills with “shivs”; home-fashioned blades
-Can fly spacecrafts
-I’m pretty sure the “B” in his name stands for “Bad-Ass”

[THE BODY COUNT: 14]

Despite the protagonist never killing anyone, nearly everyone dies in the film.  Only a few of the deaths are shown as violent ones, with heads getting crunched, a woman being torn in half and a few teenagers being eaten alive by small alien creatures.  Several of the deaths are caused in the ship’s original crashing (according to Riddick’s estimation, over 40), but I’ve only counted the bodies shown.

[MOST SATISFYING ASS-KICKING & DEATH]

Vin Diesel vs. Cole Hauser, Round 2.

Riddick vs. Johns

Riddick, planning to use Johns as bait to buy the rest of them some time and distance from the creatures, battles again with his captor.  The fight isn’t too well choreographed, but it’s what’s going on during the fight that’s interesting.  Diesel is put in an armbar, pops his elbow out of its socket to escape and then replaces it.  All the fight, he is actually trying to lure Johns out of the light, breaking the small lights he’s wearing, cutting him so the creatures can smell his blood, and leaving Johns in the darkness where the alien beasts will see him.

CRUNCH!

Once in the dark, Johns is quickly taken out in violent fashion.

[DUDESWEAT AND MACHISMO]

Johns: “Or maybe he’ll just come back and skullfuck you in your sleep.”

S&M Diesel

Diesel starts the movie bound, gagged and blindfolded, presumably by Cole Hauser.  The two are constantly fighting, with Hauser whipping Diesel at one point with a prod and chaining him up.  So yeah, there’s some subtext in this one.

[EXPLOITATION AND MISOGYNY]

Though problems occur in the film’s plot at the fault of the female characters, all of the women in Pitch Black are seen as strong and usually clear-headed.  Still, one character renames herself and seems to want to be a man.  So you could claim that as a point for this category.

[EPIC MOMENT AND BEST ONE-LINER]

Riddick is attacked by one of the monsters.  Instead of being torn to shreds, ripped in half, or any of the things that happen to the other victims, Riddick muscles down the beast, slices it up with his shiv, disembowels it, and breaks its neck.  Because he’s a fucking bad-ass.

Monster Slayer

Riddick: “Did not know who he was fucking with.”

[THE MORAL OF THE STORY]

Life or death situations can bring about the good in anyone.  Especially if that “anyone” is an opportunist killing machine.

[THE CHECKLIST: 13 outta 25]

[  ] Athlete(s) Turned “Actor”
[X] Clinging To The Outside Of A Moving Vehicle
[  ] Crotch Attack
[X] Dialogue Telling Us How Bad-Ass The Main Character(s) Is/Are
[  ] Ending Featuring An Ambulance, A Blanket or A Towel
[X] Factory/Warehouse
[X] Giant Explosion(s)
[  ] Heavy Artillery
[X] Improvised Weapon(s)
[  ] Macho Mode(s) Of Transportation
[X] Main Character Sports Facial Accessory(s)
[  ] Manly Embrace(s)
[  ] Notorious Stunt-Man Sighting
[X] Passage(s) Of Time Via Montage
[X] Politically Fueled Plot Point(s)
[X] Senseless Destruction Of Property
[  ] Shoot Out(s) and/or Sword Fight(s)
[X] Slow-Motion Finishing Move(s)/Death(s)
[X] Stupid Authoritative Figure(s)
[X] Substance Usage and/or Abuse
[  ] Tis The Season
[  ] Torture Sequence(s)
[X] Unnecessary Sequel [The Chronicles Of Riddick]
[  ] Vehicle Chase(s)
[  ] Vigilante Justice

You're not afraid of the dark, are you?

Alien Busters

The Hidden title

.

[The Chalk-Outline]

The Hidden (1987): Breakdown by Rutledal

A cop and an FBI agent have to track down a body swapping alien on the loose in L.A.

[The Execution]

Based on the fact that the movie’s basic premise features Kyle MacLachlan playing a FBI agent on the hunt for a supernatural killer, a Twin Peaks fanboy like me had his expectations turned way up before popping this in the DVD player. And boy did it ever deliver.

Mulkey

The movie hits the ground running when a trench coat wearing man* guns down 4 cops in a bank before driving of in a Ferrari while listening to old school hard rock. This is the start of a car chase sequence as hilarious as it is awesome, but it comes to an abrupt end when the man is gunned down by a bunch of cops. Does this kill him? No. So what do they do? They shoot him some more and blow up his car, causing him severe burn injuries.  And does this kill him? Nope, he’s one tough motherfucker. So they stuff him in the hospital where he is put in a coma and is expected to not last over night. We then learn that up until two weeks ago this man was a law abiding citizen, but now he has killed a dozen people and robbed several banks for no apparent reason. Back in the hospital the man unexpectedly wakes from his coma, walks over to the patient he shares room with, opens his mouth and transfers a fucking alien over to him. Then the first man drops dead and the second guy awakes from his coma.

Hey, I said "no tongue!"

But just when Beck, the cop in charge of the case, thinks the case is closed, a G-Man (played by MacLachlan) shows up at the police station and asks for assistance to find a Jack DeVries. It turns out that DeVries is the trench coat wearing alien-possessed bank robber. So he rushes to the hospital only to learn what we just saw. However the alien doesn’t stay hidden for long as he soon starts stealing Ferraris and killing people. With the cop and the G-Man on its trail the alien gets a great idea, to take control of a senator who plans to run for the presidential office.

Hidden TV

The movie is truly an underrated gem. It has an excellent mix of humor, horror, and splendid effects to go with the action. The acting is good, especially from MacLachlan, who is great as the quirky Agent Gallagher. The story is exciting and original, with the movie never wasting any time on unnecessary scenes. The only complaint I have about the whole business is that it doesn’t quite mange to obtain the creepy atmosphere it clearly tried to have. Still, this was an incredibly fun and enjoyable movie, and if you aren’t able to enjoy a movie about a Ferrari stealing alien who loves hard rock and desperately tries to get laid whilst also trying to conquer the world, then you are a hollow shell of a man who may never know true happiness.

Tunes

* Better known as Chris Mulkey for the Twin Peaks fanboy

[How Bad-Ass are The Main Characters?]

Hidden star

Michael Nouri is Tom Beck

When we meet Beck he’s already weary from his pursuit of the man he knows as DeVries from the last few weeks and just wants to rest. So when Gallagher shows up and wants him to help him chase down another person he is at first reluctant, but when more bodies starts showing up he follows Gallagher with a blazing gun and a certification of bad-assery. That means he’s a bad-ass.

That guy from Dune

Kyle MacLachlan is Lloyd Gallagher/Robert Stone/Alhauge etc.

Gallagher comes off as weird from the second he shows up on screen. There is just something off about the guy. Neither Beck nor I can put a finger on it. But as the movie goes on it becomes more and more clear that Gallagher is in fact an alien bounty hunter. So is he a bad-ass alien bounty hunter? Definitively yes.

[The Body Count: 26 + An Alien + A Dog]

Just Bodies

All 26 kills, and the dog, belong to the alien because the persons whose bodies he takes control over die as soon as he enters them. The final kill, that of the alien, belongs to Gallagher and you can read more about it below.

[Most Satisfying Death]

The Death of A Senator and An Alien: A Double Feature in Awesomeness

The alien has taken over the body of the senator and Gallagher has to kill him during a campaign speech. With a fucking flamethrower. You know, so he can get to the alien and kill it. It is just as awesome as it sounds, perhaps even more.

That Bad-ass from Dune

[DudeSweat and Machismo]

I could probably read some deeper into the fact that the alien travels from person to person through mouth-to-mouth contact, but I won’t.

[Exploitation and Misogyny]

The movie barely manages to squeeze in two female characters in the movie. There’s Beck’s wife who appears to be a good, caring mother, but after Beck is shot she just cries and appears to be typically grief-stricken and unable to do anything without her man’s help. Beck also suggests she should talk less, which seems a bit cruel. The other female character is a stripper the alien takes control of. The Hidden does pretty good with the little it has.

ASS!

[Epic Moment and Best One-Liner]

There are plenty of epic moments in this movie, like the alien trying to pick up some girls or Beck and Gallagher’s discussion on whether Beck should cover him or not, but I have to go with this one:

During a shootout in the prison block towards the end, the alien, in the form of one Lt. Masterson, is trying to convince Gallagher to join him so they can conquer the world together when someone off-screen shouts “Yo, hippie, what kinda dude are you?” The alien turns around and it turns out the man who said it is Danny fucking Trejo, who is then shot to death. A short, but hilarious appearance.

Danny fucking Trejo

While in the form of Lt. Masterson the alien delivers this line to Beck.

“Listen, I already shot you once. I can hardly wait to do it again.”

[The Moral Of The Story]

Don’t judge a people by their appearance they may only be human on the outside.

[THE CHECKLIST: 11 outta 25]

[  ] Athlete(s) Turned “Actor”
[  ] Clinging To The Outside Of A Moving Vehicle
[  ] Crotch Attack
[  ] Dialogue Telling Us How Bad-Ass The Main Character(s) Is/Are
[  ] Ending Featuring An Ambulance, A Blanket or A Towel
[X] Factory/Warehouse
[X] Giant Explosion(s)
[X] Heavy Artillery [Flame Thrower, Rocket Launcher, Alien Weaponry]
[  ] Improvised Weapon(s)
[  ] Macho Mode(s) Of Transportation
[X] Main Character Sports Facial Accessory(s)
[  ] Manly Embrace(s)
[  ] Notorious Stunt-Man Sighting
[  ] Passage(s) Of Time Via Montage
[X] Politically Fueled Plot Point(s) [Privacy, race, war, etc.]
[X] Senseless Destruction Of Property
[X] Shoot Out(s) and/or Sword Fight(s)
[X] Slow-Motion Finishing Move(s)/Death(s)
[  ] Stupid Authoritative Figure(s)
[  ] Substance Usage and/or Abuse
[  ] Tis The Season
[  ] Torture Sequence(s)
[X] Unnecessary Sequel [The Hidden II]
[X] Vehicle Chase(s)
[X] Vigilante Justice

Tired of Aliens

Is my outfit really THAT ugly?

Avenging Force killcount

Avenging Force (1986)

Avenging Force

Starring Michael Dudikoff

and Steve James

Watch video:

Dudikoff kills 10

James kills 2

Discuss

Avenging Force rights held by MGM.

To Fight Or Not To Fight

Jackie Stomp!

[THE CHALK-OUTLINE]

Little Tiger Of Canton (1971) a.k.a. Guang dong xiao lao hu a.k.a. The Cub Tiger From Kwang Tung: Breakdown by Kain424

A Kung Fu student struggles against his master, who thinks martial arts should never be used.

[THE EXECUTION]

First off, it’s important to note that the film, Master With Cracked Fingers, is a completely different film that utilizes sections of this film as its basis.  This is Jackie Chan’s first starring role, but though it was filmed in 1971, it didn’t see proper distribution until 1973.

Chan Flip

It’s interesting to see a 17 year old Chan, who still goes by Chan Yuan Lung at this point.  He isn’t as fast as he’ll be in later films, but some of his trademarks are already here.  You get to see him use random objects in fights and beat on women, but rather than being reluctant to fight, here Jackie seems to think fighting is the right thing to do.

This is one of those Kung Fu flicks where the main character keeps getting into battles, always seemingly in the right, only to be chastised by his master after doing so.  I’m not sure why these martial arts masters bother learning or teaching their skills if they don’t ever believe it should be used, even in self defense.  Even Mr. Miyagi understood that part.  It’s also one of those movies where the main bad guy has a special move (here it’s the “Leg of Doom”) and the protagonist has to learn some new way of guarding against it.

Platter to Face

The movie sets teenage Jackie against one ridiculous situation after another, each time tempting him into battle.  In one memorable scene, Jackie hears a woman being raped in a building above him and he must restrain himself against her pleas for assistance.  Jackie, of course, helps the poor girl out, only to be punished by having to punch his bare fist into a jar full of broken glass.  Jackie does so, and you can’t help but wonder if it’s all worth the price.

In the end, the movie is a rare curiosity.  It’s good for fans who want to see early Chan work, but it’s once again not at all for casual viewers.  Not even if you generally enjoy the Kung Fu genre.

[HOW BAD-ASS IS THE MAIN CHARACTER?]

Hsiao Hu

Jackie Chan is Hsiao Hu

Hsiao Hu isn’t the most bad-ass character ever, nor is he a very intelligent man.  He is just some young kid trying to woo a young lady and learn martial arts from the young lady’s father.  He’s impulsive but also very good at heart.  His conflict is a constant battle between helping others and helping himself.  He lets a pickpocket go on several occasions and constantly tries to assist others in need.  But while he really is a proficient fighter, there’s really nothing too special about the guy.

[THE BODY COUNT: 3]

This one’s not too heavy on the kills, leaving most of the action to street fighting sequences.  Not that there aren’t brutal fights, it’s just that they aren’t very lethal ones.  Still, one guy does go down early on and Jackie apparently kills a guy with a super-kick to the head, with another man falling to his death.

[MOST SATISFYING ASS-KICKING]

Final Fight

The final battle.  It’s really four against one, but Jackie whittles the enemy down until it’s just the final guy.  After getting his ass handed to him for several minutes, Jackie finally just kicks the guy in the nuts and starts winning.  Chan shows off his athletic prowess pretty well here, hinting at the great things to come.

[DUDESWEAT AND MACHISMO]

Little Tiger, huh?

Aside from some shirtless shenanigans at the end of the film, the gay is kept largely out of the matters presented here.

[EXPLOITATION AND MISOGYNY]

This is a weird movie where the “wise old man” character would rather his student ignore a woman being raped than use his taught skills to defend her honor.  The movie also surprised me by actually showing the raped woman’s breasts.

Still, I’m not sure if I can say the movie itself is all that misogynistic.  One of the best fighters in the film is a woman, and she comes very close to giving the whole business an actual emotional core.  Fortunately, her character development ends the moment she gets injured.  It’s still a Jackie Chan movie, after all.

[EPIC MOMENT AND BEST ONE-LINER]

Near the end of the movie, with the characters having gone into hiding, Chan’s pickpocket friend being roped and strung up onto a ship’s mast, and his co-workers all being bullied, beaten and generally harassed, Jackie is still restraining himself from fighting.  It seems as if he is about to interfere, but then his teacher says his name.

Master: Hsiao hu…

Jackie stops moving forward and seems to begrudgingly regain composure.  But then Master shouts.

Master: Fight!

And Jackie Chan proceeds to whoop all kinds of ass, leaving a dockyard of beaten foes lying all about.  In a film that was pretty boring, this was actually kinda cool.

Pickpocket

As for the one-liner, I’d give it to Hsiao Hu’s pickpocket friend played by Yuen Biao.  After being strung up, he threatens revenge in his next life:

Pickpocket: You son of a bitch, let me tell you! In 18 years, I’ll be another man…

[THE MORAL OF THE STORY]

Sometimes violence is more than necessary.

[The Gist of Jackie: 3 outta 5]

[  ] Breaks Into Someplace Or Escapes By Way Of Acrobatics
[X] Has An Annoying Tag-Along Companion
[X] Makes The ‘Ow!’ Face And/Or Rubs A Soar Spot
[  ] Performs A Ridiculously Dangerous Stunt
[X] Uses A Random Object To Defend Himself

[THE CHECKLIST: 09 outta 25]

[X] Athlete(s) Turned “Actor”
[  ] Clinging To The Outside Of A Moving Vehicle
[X] Crotch Attack
[  ] Dialogue Telling Us How Bad-Ass The Main Character(s) Is/Are
[  ] Ending Featuring An Ambulance, A Blanket or A Towel
[  ] Factory/Warehouse
[  ] Giant Explosion(s)
[  ] Heavy Artillery
[X] Improvised Weapon(s)
[  ] Macho Mode(s) Of Transportation
[  ] Main Character Sports Facial Accessory(s)
[  ] Manly Embrace(s)
[  ] Notorious Stunt-Man Sighting
[  ] Passage(s) Of Time Via Montage
[X] Politically Fueled Plot Point(s)
[X] Senseless Destruction Of Property
[  ] Shoot Out(s) and/or Sword Fight(s)
[X] Slow-Motion Finishing Move(s)/Death(s)
[X] Stupid Authoritative Figure(s)
[  ] Substance Usage and/or Abuse
[  ] Tis The Season
[X] Torture Sequence(s)
[  ] Unnecessary Sequel
[  ] Vehicle Chase(s)
[X] Vigilante Justice

What Move Is That!?

That’s My Foot-To-Your-Nuts Style!

Tranformers: A Dish Best Served Never

TROTF 01

[THE CHALK-OUTLINE]

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (2009): Breakdown by Rantbo

Explosion – Dick Joke – Cleavage – Sunset – Robot – U.S. Military Recruitment Video Footage: Repeat For 2 Hours.

[THE EXECUTION]

TROTF 02

Yes. Those Are What You Think They Are. Welcome To Transformers 2

OK, I’m going to try my best to recount the plot what happened. But, you’re going to have to cut me some slack if I miss something, as this film’s narrative changed shape and size more often than the fuckin’ robots did. Here goes…

The film begins in 17,000 B.C. when ancient Transformers roamed the Earth, killing black people unprovoked. Awesome. Jump ahead. A chase sequence breaks out featuring 5-9 transformers including Optimus Prime and the one that’s just a giant wheel with a head. I didn’t catch it’s name.

Optimus informs us, via voiceover, that he and a bunch of the other “Good” Robots have teamed up with the United States military to cruise around the world assassinating the “Bad” Robots for their affiliation with Megatron. Even though the ones made victims of this witch-hunt had nothing to do with the attacks at the end of part one. But I understand the logic. It’s like if the quarterback of a football team gets caught shaving points, you naturally have to fire the entire defensive line, as they are all wearing the same uniform.

Seventy-three explosions later, we join Sam (Mutt Jones) as he is getting ready for college and inadvertently finding a chunk of the all powerful cube stuck to his old hoody.  The chunk then sets his floor on fire (remember how it set shit on fire in the first movie?) and turns all his household appliances into Mini Popeye Robots, with giant phallic rods extending from their crotches. Thankfully, Camaro lives in the garage and saves the day by blowing up Sam’s house. I’m not sure why this helps, but I’m also not sure why this sequence was inter-cut with shots of dogs fucking either…

TROTF 03

Anyways, the point is Sam is now back on the Bad Robot’s radar—which is actually played by one of the Bad Robots. SoundCheck or something. Doesn’t matter, skipping ahead.

Now at college, Sam meets the film series’ newest pointless comic relief cast member, his roommate ____ I’m sorry, I don’t remember his name. No joke. But again, it doesn’t matter as the REAL reason for this first hour of the movie is to glorify an awesome cameo of the T-X from TERMINATOR 3.

TROTF 04

It should come to no shock that the cameo isn’t explained, and it was a little confusing at first, as they hired a newer/younger/hotter “actress” to play the role (I guess Kristanna Loken was too busy working on the latest Uwe Boll film, to reprise the role), but it was still pretty entertaining to see these two terribly deluded franchises amalgamate into one GIANT pile of celluloid shit. You know what they say, anything worth sucking-ass, is worth sucking-ass hard.

So, naturally, hijinks and hilarity ensue as Sam must deal with his new roommate’s space-robot conspiracy theories, his pot-brownie eating, student humping mother and the T-X trying to tentacle-rape him to death. And this all somehow leads up to Sam fulfilling his destiny of: dying, visiting Robot Heaven, learning these events were pre-ordained since before Christ and jump-starting Optimus Prime with a shard of solidified black space dust so he can have the power to wear the skin of another robot, which he’ll need to defeat the mother of the Bad Robots before she blows up the Earth’s sun with a giant laser-cannon that was hidden underneath the first layer of limestone on the great pyramid of Giza! Of course! It’s so simple now that I think about it! Though, I’m still not quite clear on how this all ties in to dog fucking…

Same Shit Different Movie

Racism:

Still A#1. The opening to this film actually bests BAD BOYS II, when michael bay’s name appeared over a burning cross, by beginning with an ancient robot killing some black tribesmen with no reason given. Then, of course, there are the twin robots, Mudflap and Skids. And they couldn’t have picked more appropriate names.

Since every critic out there has already torn these characters to pieces for being black stereotypes personified, I’m not going to waste too much time doing the same here. I’ll just say that while I can get past the ebonics, the violent tendencies, the terrible one-liners and the pride in willful ignorance, as this is what the target audience of 12 year-old white kids think is cool, but the fact that they made these two abominations look like this…

TROTF 05

I just can’t forgive that shit. Fucking, wow. I can’t believe that someone with influence didn’t see these two and immediately slam their foot on the breaks and force bay to change this. You would have thought that Spielberg of all people could have learned from his buddy Lucas’s Jar-Jar fiasco, but no. I actually find it amazing that bay was able to out-offend Black-Stereotype Bot and Anthony Anderson from part one, but fucking kudos, he did it.

Brains Are For Geeks And Assholes:

Any and every character that has an inkling of intelligence, or that is in a position of education and information is portrayed as an insufferable dick-head that despite their brainpower and knowledge, just don’t get it. So, they are written into prank laden situations that fall just shy of them having their underwear pulled over there head by Donald Gibb. Oh, and bay also has a library explode to salt the thinking man’s wound.

Ass Numbingly—Fucking—LONG:

It’s truly brutal. Over, WELL over 60 minutes is pure, unnecessary fluff that has no business in this film at all. The only reason for its existence that I can come up with, is that bay must have been paid on an hourly basis. There is no other excuse for how much pointless shit clogs up this movie. Most of which, leads me to the next point.

Non-Stop, Annoying, Unnecessary Comic Relief:

Once again, ARGHHH!!! It’s fucking unrelenting, you guys. There’s actually a point where a geriatric Bad Robot, who has a fucking BEARD and A CANE, who is somehow able to teleport, which they also don’t ever bother to explain—farts a fucking parachute…

TROTF 06

Improvements

Slightly Fewer Characters With More Shit To Do:

Several of the bullshit supporting characters from the first film return, but surprisingly, they actually end up participating in something that—I won’t say matters, but effects the “story”. And at least they didn’t bring back Anthony Anderson. So, there is some improvement here.

Less Advertising:

Aside from the already established GM cars, and a shot of times square. I only noticed one blatant  product placement for a shitty soda, whose name I shall not repeat. I’ll just say that it looks like piss and tastes even worse. Also, I’m pretty sure all the phones in the film were the same, but I’m not a phone guy, so I didn’t look too far into it.

More, Better Action:

While I still think that the robots are still WAY too overly complex and hard to comprehend, the fight sequences are far superior this go round. Which is the best I could have hoped for, because I wouldn’t expect, nor want, them to have had changed the continuity of how the bots function. But thankfully, someone must have drilled a hole of sense through bay’s ego big enough to get a whisper of how action geography works into his thick juvenile skull, as I was actually able to tell (for the most part) what the fuck was going on. And while it’s ludicrous that this is a problem that has to be addressed, I’m still just so pleased that I was able to just sit and watch, instead of straining my eyes with a hellish endurance trial of comprehension like part one. Though, I was still rarely able to discern which character was fucking which. But I think this had more to do with shitty, similar Robot color schemes and voice choices than cinematography and editing.

In closing, and in case you couldn’t tell, I did not like this movie. BUT, I also did not hate it. Even though I really, really wanted to. Unlike part one, I strongly believe that there exists a salvageable action film within this ungodly messy narrative. And the simple fact that this film bothered to HAVE a narrative, despite how bombarded with shit it was, is a sign of hope. Given the time, I think I could re-edit this bloated pile into a taught, hour and twenty-minute piece of acceptable Action cinema. And this is far more than I could say of part one. So, TRANSFORMERS: ROTF is still a shit sandwich, but at least it’s not a soggy shit sandwich. There are easily more movies out there, and recently too, that I would choose re-watching this flick over. And, however backhanded, that’s saying something. Though, I’m still not going to recommend anyone else waste their time watching this. Please, heed my advice, skip it. It’s really not worth the time, and especially not worth the money, no matter how small the charge.

[HOW BAD-ASS IS THE MAIN CHARACTER?]

TROTF 07

Shia LaBeouf is Sam Witwicky. Again.

While Optimus does get far more screen time than in the first, he is still merely a supporting role, as he spends nearly half the movie dead. So, once again, we are left to view the heroic deeds of Witwicky the Wussy.

To be fair, the character has grown a bit since last we saw him, and while he is still prone to fits of crying incomprehensible babble, I found him far less annoying. He stopped screaming “No, NO, NOOOO!!!” every other line, he’s assertive and actually does something that effects the what happens. However—I still take issue with the character.

This time, the powers that be, couldn’t seem to decide if they wanted Sam to be the reluctant “John McClane-esque” hero, or the out for justice “Superman” kind. Consequently, when Witwicky switches gears from one to the other, mid-way through, my head started to hurt and my brain said, “Fuck it” and shut off. Which, now that I’m able to think again, must have been the desired effect all along. So, if LaBeouf’s character continues to evolve in these small doses, I can see him being a gun-wielding, non-crying ballsy hero, somewhere around part 5. The Action Gods help us all.

[THE BODY COUNT: SEVEN TO EIGHT—THOUSAND]

Humans fly through the air like rag dolls and robots get junked like matchbox cars at a daycare. Not to mention , bay also has Paris destroyed—again. With so much destruction, chaos and general bayhem the count is nigh uncountable. At least with any acceptable accuracy. Not to mention at least 3 dead characters return from the scrap-heap in the sky with no real explanation how, so fuck it. The count I posted is an estimate based on a number given within the movie. That’s the best you’re gunna get from me.

[MOST SATISFYING ASS-KICKING & DEATH]

Optimus Prime+ vs. The Fallen

TROTF 08

Though anti-climatic as it takes all of 1 minute for Prime to smash the “almighty” ancient Transformer into a pile of slimy metal shit, the fight was still satisfying. While it took bay almost 5 combined hours to finally show us Prime’s ass-kicking potential, he thankfully doesn’t disappoint in the brutality department.

[DUDESWEAT AND MACHISMO]

For some ungodly reason….

TROTF 09

John Turturro’s ass, ladies and gentlemen. By far, the film’s greatest achievement in non-sequitur what-the-fuckery.

There could have been some more gayness that I missed, but due to the above sequence, I was blinded by hairy man-ass and stricken immune to gay charm for the duration of the picture.

[EXPLOITATION AND MISOGYNY]

TROTF 10

Holy shit! There ARE Transfemmers! And literally 2 seconds after they speak, revealing themselves female, michael bay has them destroyed! And I wish I was joking. You almost have to applaud such devoted, cross-species misogyny. And this, of course, brings the tally of Good Robot Deaths to 1 Black Guy and 2 Females. Well done, bay. But the misogo-train doesn’t stop there.

There are also two more female robots working for the bad guys. The first one is the aforementioned T-X on lone from Warner Brothers Pictures. Aside from appearing for the soul purpose of scandalous T&A, she also gets a face fulla robot jizz, courtesy of Camaro.

TROTF 11

Then there is the pièce de résistance. The final female robot is none other than the title character. The Fallen. There is no doubt in my mind, that this is a fact. Some would argue that by having the voice of the Candy Man is proof otherwise, but this is simply a disguise. And the fact remains, up until the final 15 minutes, this thing spends the entire film, and if we are to believe the story, the last several thousand years, floating around in space, hooked up to a giant rock crapping out gooey-pod units of baby Bad Robots. Just like the queen from ALIENS. And what happens when she decides to stop producing spawn for war and tries to enter the work force of world domination? Optimus Prime rips her fucking face off and shoves his fist through her chest. If this were made by any other director than michael bay, there might be room for dispute, but as it stands, I think my theory of The Fallen’s gender is pretty concrete.

[EPIC MOMENT AND BEST ONE-LINER]

Optimus = Scrap-Metal

It’s sunset in Jersey. A tragic score accompanies the fallen Autobot leader, Optimus Prime, as he is brought home to rest. Transported with utmost care via helicopter, the alien hero’s body is delivered for the remaining members of the Decepticon resistance, to say goodbye, and gain closure.

And they drop his body onto the tarmac like an beercan filled with lead. Causing me—to laugh my nuts off.

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Agent Simmons: “Let’s not get episodic here, okay, old-timer? Beginning, middle, end. Facts, details. Condense: Plot. Tell it!”

If ever there where a more appropriate situation for the need to heed one’s own advice, it’s the screenwriter that wrote that line.

[THE MORAL OF THE STORY]

Don’t drink and drive, kids. Otherwise your director will be forced to create a teleportation sequence and fuck up an already stupid-ass movie to explain why your hand is a crippled mess. Oh, and Megan Fox also returned for part two, and in case I forgot to mention it, here’s what she contributed…

TROTF 12

[THE CHECKLIST: 18 outta 25]

[  ] Athlete(s) Turned “Actor”
[X] Clinging To The Outside Of A Moving Vehicle
[X] Crotch Attack
[X] Dialogue Telling Us How Bad-Ass The Main Character(s) Is/Are
[  ] Ending Featuring An Ambulance, A Blanket or A Towel
[X] Factory/Warehouse
[X] Giant Explosion(s)
[X] Heavy Artillery
[X] Improvised Weapon(s)
[X] Macho Mode(s) Of Transportation
[X] Main Character Sports Facial Accessory(s)
[  ] Manly Embrace(s)
[  ] Notorious Stunt-Man Sighting
[  ] Passage(s) Of Time Via Montage
[X] Politically Fueled Plot Point(s)
[X] Senseless Destruction Of Property
[X] Shoot Out(s) and/or Sword Fight(s)
[X] Slow-Motion Finishing Move(s)/Death(s)
[X] Stupid Authoritative Figure(s)
[X] Substance Usage and/or Abuse
[  ] Tis The Season
[X] Torture Sequence(s)
[  ] Unnecessary Sequel
[X] Vehicle Chase(s)
[X] Vigilante Justice

TROTF 13

They Live killcount

They Live (1988)

They Live

Starring Roddy Piper

and Keith David

Watch video:

Piper kills 29

David kills 13

Discuss

They Live rights held by Universal Pictures.

Out For Justice killcount

Out For Justice (1991)

Out For Justice

Starring Steven Seagal

Watch video:

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Seagal kills 13

Discuss

Out For Justice rights held by Warner Bros.

The 5th Film By Quentin Tarantino

Death Proof 01

[THE CHALK-OUTLINE]

Grindhouse: Thunder Bolt Death Proof [Extended & Unrated](2007): Breakdown by Rantbo

Q. What if Tarantino made a late-70s, early-80s horror movie about a ‘Slasher’ that used his connections working in the movie business to choose his victims, and instead of killing them off one-by-one with a knife, he used his stunt-car to claim them all at once?

A. DEATH PROOF

[THE EXECUTION]

Note: I Recommend Reading My Breakdown On Planet Terror, Before Reading Further.

Kurt Russell cums in his front cab when hot women die on a black-top slab.

Death Proof 02

DEATH PROOF was easily my favorite movie of 2007 and stands pretty high on the all-time list, so this breakdown might go a little bit longer than normal, but bear with me. I’ll do my best to keep my opinions entertaining.

One thing I must address before my praises, is the main argument of DEATH PROOF haters: The Talking. “I hated the girls, I hated the dialogue, it’s too long, the first half was boring…”, etc. And while I agree that there is an abundance of words and that the girls can become annoying, which, if watching this as part of the GRINDHOUSE experience, is compounded by a stark contrast to the previous bill, that spent practically NO time in this department, I disagree in seeing this as a negative. For two reasons:

#1. This is a film by Quentin Tarantino. His name was clearly advertised on the posters and in the trailers. And since even most casual movie-watchers know, his previous films are 90% dialogue, leaving me with one question to the disappointed viewers of DEATH PROOF: WHAT THE FUCK WHERE YOU EXPECTING!? michael bay’s movies come out in the summer, you should have tried reading the marquee a little closer.

#2.  I understand what this movie intended to be, was and is—a slasher movie. And what happens in slasher movies? Girls hang out, they talk about boys, they take illicit substances, have sex and get punished. Carved in fucking stone, since 1980. And with most every great slasher flick (BLACK CHRISTMAS, HALLOWEEN, FRIDAY THE 13th, etc.) the first hour of the film is build-up to the demise of the stock characters. You get what you pay for, folks. And with DEATH PROOF, you get even more…

Death Proof 03

It wouldn’t be a Tarantino film without the genre twist.

-RESERVOIR DOGS is a heist movie, where you never see the heist.

-PULP FICTION is, amongst other things, a movie about two hitmen on job retrieving a briefcase, the circumstances of retrieving which lead to a split path of spiritual awakening and damnation, yet you never find out what becomes of one of the main characters. Not to mention, what’s inside the fucking case.

-KILL BILL is a tale of revenge, that begins mid-way through without delivering the full history of the circumstances until over 4 hours in.

And DEATH PROOF is a slasher film that begins half-a-day before the troupe of insufferable girls make it to the lake house for literal and figurative fucking. And they are killed before even getting there. It’s this style that defines QT’s movies.

If anything, I would think the people who don’t like all the talking would be pleased that the ratio of dialogue-to-death is so SHORT in DEATH PROOF when compared to it’s psychotic-killer movie cousins. This movie books to satisfaction. The whole slasher half of the movie is over in less than an hour and it has 5 of the greatest kills ever shot for the genre! If you don’t like slasher movies, fine, you don’t have to watch them. But don’t watch a film in a genre you hate and then bitch about how it let you down. Of course it did, asshole. Nobody twisted your arm to stick around after PLANET TERROR. Just grab your coat and jog the fuck on. That said, on to the fan boy blow-job part of the review.

Death Proof 04

What really makes DEATH PROOF a diamond in the wreckage of the action/horror cult genre, is how well Tarantino presents the unexpected, expectedness. The whole first half of the film just keeps building and building to these bitches getting creamed and then, allovasudden, whammo! It does. And it leaves you with a sort of “Well, that was awesome, but now what? That’s not all, is it?” frame of mind.

The slasher victims didn’t even leave their car. Much less, have a chance to run around half-naked through the foggy moon-lit woods surrounding Shanna Banana’s Daddy’s lake house, waiting for the set-up elusive boyfriend to show up in the nick of time to save the final girl. It was just a split-second of fear, then BANG!—darkness. Though it was highly satisfying watching Jungle Julia explode from brute force, it’s not much of a horror film if the main characters only have a split second’s knowledge of their impending doom…

Well, thankfully, Tarantino knew this and the movie goes on to deliver ANOTHER batch of girls. Making sure that this time, it won’t be so quick. And this is the genius of the film.

Not only does Tarantino cover the 80s style slasher film archetype of rooting for the killer (Jason/Freddy = Mike), he pulls a switch-a-roo and makes the second half an homage to the 70s style slasher film archetype of the vengeance fueled female (I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE, FAIR GAME, THRILLER). It’s a two-fer-one in an ALREADY two-for-one double feature! Talk about bang for your buck.

Death Proof 05

And the way in which he pulls this off is fantastic. For the first half, when Stuntman Mike is introduced, he’s charming, funny, cool and an all-around old-school likable dude. His enigmatic demeanor and humorous way with words is hypnotic, making him an easily more likable contrast to the loud mouthed, sassy twats on which he preys. Thus making his dastardly perverted deed, not only incredibly enjoyable, but also just shy of forgivable.

But, how does one go about turning this icon of evil coolness into someone we want to see punished? By having a second set of take-no-shit females unveil him for what he really is underneath that hard and scarred macho shell. A giant pussy. And to do so with one of THE hands-down greatest car chase sequences EVER shot, is, well—again, it’s genius.  Taking a slasher movie and mixing it with a car-sploitation flick is inspired. Inspired by classic drive-in ‘Grindhouse’ movies of the 70s and 80s. A ton of which are not only paid homage to with countless props and bits of dialogue, but also with straight-up verbal nods to the films themselves.

“…back in the all-or-nothing days, the VANISHING POINT days, the DIRTY MARY CRAZY LARRY days—the WHITE LINE FEVER days. Real cars, smashin’ into real cars. And real dumb people drivin’ ’em.”

Which makes for a hellova fun Easter-egg hunt for b-movie film buffs like myself. Then, complimenting the top-notch story, DEATH PROOF is also: Shot beautifully. Edited superbly. Performed by a wild bunch of women that you could swear were real life cliques. Features Kurt Russell being more badass (at least, when he’s supposed to be) than he has been since The Plisskin Chronicles.  Unveils Zoë Bell as a tour-de-force wildcat stuntwoman AND actress.  A kick-ass soundtrack of pure choice entertainment.  Wide-eye, holy-shit spectacular NON-CG stunts. And it has one of the best and most satisfying finales I’ve ever seen.

I would be hard pressed to find anything negative to say about it. But, in an attempt to deliver some critique,  I do think that Tracie Thoms could have toned it down a bit. I dig the sassy black-girl thing, but she may have taken it a little too far with all her Will Smithian “Ahwwww HELL NAW!”’s and “Mutha Fucka!”’s. Oh, and even though I can appreciate the ‘fun’ of not knowing, I would still like to know what happened to Lee…

Death Proof 06

In closing, I consider DEATH PROOF to be a modern classic in genre film-making and can’t recommend it enough if you are even a casual fan of b-action and horror. It’s a great film and I for one, love it.

[HOW BAD-ASS ARE THE MAIN CHARACTERS?]

Death Proof 07

Kurt Russell is Stuntman Mike McKay

Our hero for part one, at least the way I see it. Mike is essentially the Cowardly Lion from The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz—with a sexual fetish for crashing his car into obnoxious sets of women…

He puts on a great show of bullying, but the second that “little dog” bites, he breaks down like a bitch with a skinned knee. But, still—who doesn’t love the Cowardly Lion? Honestly, if Lion had had a thing for ramming Munchkins with his giant, oblonged head, and then jerked-off on their corpses, would he have been any less lovable? I think not. And so’s the case with Mike.

While in control, he’s the star of the show. A charismatic, well-spoken, funny, well-mannered brutal sadistic psychopath, that can eat the shit outtava nacho grande platter. What’s not to like about that? And as far as sexual delinquents go, Mike is pretty hardcore and original. Few perverts would risk shattered bones and trash their vintage muscle cars for ONE good load-blow.

Death Proof 08

The Girls — The 2nd Set: Left to Right…

Mary Elizabeth Winstead is Lee

Lee doesn’t really do anything. I pretty much just included her because she was in the above pic and because she’s played by McClane’s daughter and I really, really wanna fuck her. But again, she doesn’t really do anything other than inadvertently take one for the team.

Rosario Dawson is Abernathy

Make-up artist to Lindsay Lohan by day, enabler for insane stuntwomen by day-off, Abby is mostly just along for the ride. Until the end. Once the petal hits the metal, she drops her girlie-girl, fashion-obsessed personality, hikes up her skirt and opens up a big ol’ can of Brand-X Whoop-Ass.

Zoë ‘The Cat’ Bell is Herself

She was Xena, she was the Bride, and now, she’s Herself. And the benefit of being a stunt-woman and playing oneself, is that she does—all her own stunts. And what stunts they are! Her sequence on the hood of the Kowalski Challenger is, to risk sounding like a douchie movie critic, an exciting thrill-a-minute-ride! It’s not to often that I experience actual physical tension while watching movies, but I’ll be damned if my butthole didn’t pucker when the Charger hit the fan.

It’s rare when a woman can convincingly pull off being a Bad-Ass. Rarer still while playing themselves, as women simply contradict the term. Don’t get me wrong, women can and do Bad-Ass things, but to truly play a level of Ellen Ripley-Sarah Conner-esque Bad-Ass, it just doesn’t happen on any consistent basis. But, Zoë here, pulls it off. And in doing so becomes, pardon the pun, the driving-force behind the second half of the film.

Tracie Thoms is Kim

The “colored one”. Quote from the movie! I just thought it would be funny. Please don’t hate me.

Kim is the loud, sassy and swearing blaxspoitaion throwback chick. A stuntwoman by trade, she is second only to Miss. Bell. The female behind the wheel, Kim takes the role of the driver on this little Miss-adventure. Her tough-as-nails exterior only ever wavers when the thought of having lost a friend is foremost, indicating her a good person. But aside from that, this chick is in the business of kicking ass and business is good. Kim’s skills behind the wheel and gun are 99% responsible for Mike’s fate. And she works them with a grin. She’s no Pam Grier, but she wasn’t a bad thirty-something substitute either.

[THE BODY COUNT: SIX]

Mike: 5
The Girls: 1

Awesome deaths, great pay-offs, I don’t want to ruin ’em, just check it out.

[MOST SATISFYING DEATH]

Jungle Julia Lucai

I hate to see her go—that’s a lie. I love seeing her go, but I love EVEN MORE watching her die. All her snarky, know-it-all, self-aware coolness comes to a shattering, limb-detaching end when Mike enacts his goo-shooting plan.

Death Proof 09

The special effects of Gregory Nicotero and his team are so lifelike it’s—disgusting. It felt natural to write the word ‘disturbing’ there, but I couldn’t do it, as I enjoyed it too much.

[DUDESWEAT AND MACHISMO]

I could try the old stand-by of cars being inherently macho and therefor gay, which I could then back-up by the fact that they are used inadvertently within this movie to swing the world population ratio in favor of more cock and balls. But I won’t, ‘cuz I’m a classy guy.

[EXPLOITATION AND MISOGYNY]

Death Proof 10

All the girls featured are strong-willed and independent, and aside from the obvious fact that Mike slaughters half of them with his car, there is surprisingly little for a slasher movie.

Mike does charm (manipulate) himself a lap-dance from the elusive Butterfly, but do to the fact that it lacks nudity and is generally as tame as can be, there is little to gossip about. Butterfly, however, is still a stupid whore for participating.

Also, Lee get left behind in the sticks to be presumably raped by Jasper (Jonathan Loughran, reprising the role of the back-woods rapist from KILL BILL), but it’s unlikely that actually went down, as even though Jasper is clearly stupid, he still knows that Lee’s friends are due back shortly. So, I doubt very much that she was violated.

[EPIC MOMENT AND BEST ONE-LINER]

Mike Breaks The Fourth Wall

Death Proof 11

Up until this point the plot had merely been simmering on medium-low, but the second Mike gives the audience his shit-eating grin-“wink”, the movie starts to boil and it isn’t too long before the proverbial movie pot is overflowing female hipster blood.

Death Proof 12

[THE MORAL OF THE STORY]

You know that old saying, ‘If you’re gunna be dumb, ya gotta be tough.’, well, here’s another version: ‘If you’re gunna fuck with women stunt-drivers, ya gotta be DEATH PROOF.’

[THE CHECKLIST: 12 outta 25]

[  ] Athlete(s) Turned “Actor”
[X] Clinging To The Outside Of A Moving Vehicle
[  ] Crotch Attack
[X] Dialogue Telling Us How Bad-Ass The Main Character(s) Is/Are
[  ] Ending Featuring An Ambulance, A Blanket or A Towel
[  ] Factory/Warehouse
[X] Giant Explosion(s)
[  ] Heavy Artillery
[X] Improvised Weapon(s)
[X] Macho Mode(s) Of Transportation
[X] Main Character Sports Facial Accessory(s)
[  ] Manly Embrace(s)
[X] Notorious Stunt-Man Sighting
[  ] Passage(s) Of Time Via Montage
[  ] Politically Fueled Plot Point(s)
[X] Senseless Destruction Of Property
[  ] Shoot Out(s) and/or Sword Fight(s)
[X] Slow-Motion Finishing Move(s)/Death(s)
[  ] Stupid Authoritative Figure(s)
[X] Substance Usage and/or Abuse
[  ] Tis The Season
[  ] Torture Sequence(s)
[  ] Unnecessary Sequel
[X] Vehicle Chase(s)
[X] Vigilante Justice

Death Proof 13

Vampires, Kung Fu and Techno

Blade poster

[THE CHALK-OUTLINE]

Blade (1998): Breakdown by Kain424

Half vampire/half human vampire hunter kills vampires.  Really, that’s about it.

[THE EXECUTION]

Before the X-Men movies jumpstarted the comic book movie decade, there were only a few good comic book movies.  The Punisher, The Crow, arguably the first two Batman films, and Blade (for why Superman sucks, go here).  While The Punisher never saw a U.S. release and thus had little success, Blade was able to make a splash with its wide release.

Blade & Dodge

Blade is a dark film with loads of bad-assery.  Its title character is an unflinching killing machine, played with a subdued fury by Wesley Snipes.  His look is clearly an influence on later films, like the following year’s The Matrix, and Blade even boasts the use of what would later be dubbed “bullet time”.  Director Stephen Norrington allows wacky visuals to punctuate what would otherwise be just silly, making rapping Japanese schoolgirls creepy and a romantic sunset scene as dark as the execution that precedes it.  And when you see two people lovingly holding hands as another man explodes in front of them, you know you’re watching a classic.

Blade Sunset

The movie also features fun performances by Udo Kier, Donal Logue and Stephen Dorff, defying logic and actually making the latter into a sort of bad-ass.  Kris Kristofferson’s side-character, Whistler, nearly steals the show, but ultimately gives the movie its heart, something that seems as unexpected as Wesley Snipes giving a reserved performance in an Action film.

Other than it’s interesting casting choices, what Blade really has going for it is it’s violence.  Seemingly with no regard for whatever rating they land on, the movie shows vampires in all their gory glory.  So in addition to gunfights, sword fights, martial arts battles and car chases, we also get blood-sucking and impalings.  The movie flinches less than it’s main character, maintaining a serious tone throughout, giving the protagonist an opportunity to actually be bad-ass instead of just saying he is.

Blade Bullet Time

The score is effective here, though the techno now seems a bit dated.  A classic New Order song remixed into a techno rave tune heads the film into that territory, but the Carpenter-like themes playing under the serious moments do wonders for the rest.

All that said, the film boasts its share of problems with being obviously dated to the 90s, having a weak female protagonist, and some shoddy CGI effects.  Still, the movie remains vastly entertaining, with Snipes acting as the solid center to an Action flick that successfully mixes in horror to make excellence.

[HOW BAD-ASS IS THE MAIN CHARACTER?]

Blade

Wesley Snipes is Blade is Eric Brooks

Snipes pulls off the character seemingly without effort.  He is astute and awesome, mixing a warrior’s cunning with super-strength and sweet-ass martial arts skills.  Blade is a ferocious bad-ass who fights without pity and without fear.  He’s a bad-ass that doesn’t let it get to his head, and in his fight scenes you can almost feel him holding back.  He’s a bad-ass that could really ruin your day, but he’s just going to hit you a couple times.

…Unless you’re a vampire.  Then you’re dead.  Again.

-Drives a modded 1968 Dodge Charger
-Dresses in awesome black body armor and leather trench coat
-Carries a booby-trapped samurai sword, lined with acid
-Carries guns that kill vampires and can fire silver stakes
-Carries lots of said silver stakes
-Carries silver ‘Glave-like’ boomerang thing also great for killing the undead
-Can kick your ass without any of these things

[THE BODY COUNT: 111]

Blade Gun

Even aside from the killing, Blade is a violent film.  The R rating allows for extended brutal fight sequences, bloody, gory violence, and general creepiness.  And within, we have gunshot, disintegration, stabbing, slicing, impaling, tearing out throats, beating, neck breaking, burning, and exploding.  All, of course, are fatal.  Snipes kills 65 vampire scum all by himself, with Kristoferson and Dorff rounding out much of the rest.

[MOST SATISFYING DEATH]

Blade

While I admit that the CGI looks a bit poor anymore, I still think the final death of the film is pretty cool.  Bullet-time and all, Frost’s demise from the sword-fight to the final, ugly explosion, is pretty cool.

[DUDESWEAT AND MACHISMO]

Blade doesn’t seem too interested in women, but his relationship with Whistler seems more like a father-son type.  I’m not sure where to go with this one.  I guess you could go into the character’s obsession with leather outfits, but it all feels like a bit of a stretch.

[EXPLOITATION AND MISOGYNY]

Like a lot of the films from the 1990s, Blade tries very hard to make its female characters tough and convincing.  N’Bush Wright (no idea how to pronounce that) is snarky and apparently very intelligent.  We know this because she’s a doctor.  She’s given dialogue that let’s us know she doesn’t take shit, but that’s about as far as that goes.

Karen

Aside from her, we have a couple occasions where female vampires act like prey or are exceptionally deceptive, hinting that women are not to be trusted.  But since the male vampires are just as bad, if not worse, I can’t really put to much STAKE in this one.  Get it?  I said… ok, fine.

[EPIC MOMENT AND BEST ONE-LINER]

My favorite moment of the film is the introduction of Blade’s character.  He just shows up at a rave where blood has been pouring from the ceiling and doesn’t have a drop on him.  He then proceeds to take on anything and anyone in the packed room that comes near him.  Blade’s a fucking bad-ass like that.

Blade Rave

Best line?

Blade: There are worse things out tonight than vampires.

Karen: Like what?

Blade: Like me.

[THE MORAL OF THE STORY]

Some motherfuckers are always trying to ice skate uphill.  I’m not sure what that has to do with vampires, but Wesley Snipes said so.

[THE CHECKLIST: 17 outta 25]

[  ] Athlete(s) Turned “Actor”
[X] Clinging To The Outside Of A Moving Vehicle
[X] Crotch Attack
[X] Dialogue Telling Us How Bad-Ass The Main Character(s) Is/Are
[  ] Ending Featuring An Ambulance, A Blanket or A Towel
[X] Factory/Warehouse
[X] Giant Explosion(s)
[  ] Heavy Artillery
[X] Improvised Weapon(s)
[X] Macho Mode(s) Of Transportation
[X] Main Character Sports Facial Accessory(s)
[  ] Manly Embrace(s)
[  ] Notorious Stunt-Man Sighting
[X] Passage(s) Of Time Via Montage
[  ] Politically Fueled Plot Point(s)
[X] Senseless Destruction Of Property
[X] Shoot Out(s) and/or Sword Fight(s)
[X] Slow-Motion Finishing Move(s)/Death(s)
[X] Stupid Authoritative Figure(s)
[X] Substance Usage and/or Abuse
[  ] Tis The Season
[X] Torture Sequence(s)
[X] Unnecessary Sequel [Blade II]
[X] Vehicle Chase(s)
[  ] Vigilante Justice

Whistler

“Catch you fuckers at a bad time?”

Blade (1998) © New Line Cinema