For today I chose a film from Adam Sandler (Happy Gilmore) because the first film in the Hotel Transylvania series was very good despite what people may be saying about his career. When I saw that Netflix had Hotel Transylvania 2 available to watch, I took the shot and it’s todays’ film. The film starts off with Mavis (Selena Gomez) and Jonathan (Andy Samberg) getting married and that follows with them having their first child Dennis (Asher Blinkoff). Dracula (Sandler) is having a hard time with the idea that his new grandson could be a human and not a monster. It’s gotten to the point that Mavis and Johnny are thinking about moving away to give Dennis a normal upbringing. Not liking the idea of that, Dracula has Johnny take Mavis on vacation in an attempt to see if he can bring the monster out of Johnny. The film also stars Kevin James (King Of Queens) as Frank, Steve Buscemi (Reservoir Dogs) as Wayne, David Spade (Tommy Boy) as Griffin, Keegan-Michael Key (Let’s Be Cops) as Murray, Fran Drescher (The Nanny) as Eunice, Molly Shannon (Superstar) as Wanda, Nick Offerman (Parks & Recreation) as Grandpa Mike, Megan Mullally (Will & Grace) as Grandma Linda, Mel Brooks (Spaceballs) as Vlad, and the film was directed by Genndy Tartakovsky.
While I loved the first film, I have to say that I enjoyed this one, but not as much as the first. This film had it’s funny moments, but not as much as the first film did. The funniest character in this film was definitely Blobby who provided enough laughs even though he doesn’t really say much. I honesty believe that is why they had him in the film as much as he was. The first film dealt with Mavis wanting to date a human and this film had them struggling with the idea that their son could be human. That is the one thing I have to give the film credit for is that it was well written film and it may show that Sander has something left in the tank. I loved the edition of Mel Brooks as Vlad and certainly the nod to Interview With The Vampire with the costume Johnny wears at a party. The only thing I had a problem with is that he switches his stance very quickly on how he feels about humans even though this is a guy who has hated humans for a very long time. I just feel that this is something that should have been developed over a film, but nonetheless it was a good film. I am excited to hear that there is going to be a third film in the series because it’ll be cool to see where they take it now. Alright so it’s time to give the film a final grade and with careful thought, I am going to give the film an B+ for a final grade.
This one was always hard to believe considering that I am a huge fan of Quentin Tarantino (Pulp Fiction) and it’s that I have never seen his first film Reservoir Dogs. So with this challenge going, I figured today was better than ever. The film is about five guys Mr. White (Harvey Keitel), Mr. Blue (Eddie Bunker), Mr. Pink (Steve Buscemi), Mr. Blonde (Michael Madsen), Mr. Orange (Tim Roth), and Mr. Brown (Tarantino) who are all hired to do a jewelry store robbery that goes terribly wrong. When the surviving members meet back at the compound, they suspect that one of them may be a rat and may have tipped off the police about the job. Through chaos, conversation, and impatience they will try to figure out just who the rat is in the group. The film also stars the late Chris Penn (Best Of The Best) as Nice Guy Eddie, Lawrence Tierney (The Naked Gun: From The Files Of Police Squad!) as Joe Cabot, Randy Brooks (Colors) as Holdaway, Kirk Baltz (Natural Born Killers) as Officer Marvin Nash, and it features the voice of Steven Wright (Son Of The Mask) as K-Billy DJ.
If you know the way Tarantino films work, then this is the film where it all began for him. The heavy dialogues that his films are known for and not to mention the films where the timeline doesn’t exist or as I should say that it can be messed with. You know exactly what I am talking about when I say that because the story can be moving along and then out of nowhere we jump back in time as we get the origin stories of the more important characters of the film. I truly love that about his films because it’s different than just going through the events in chronological order. Now some of the audio can be a little shaky where you can here Keitel very well, but you notice that the microphone isn’t near Buscemi. Other than that, I truly loved this film and the twist that it gives. You are never going to believe who the rat was because I was kind of shocked when I found out myself. That to me was great storytelling on the part of Tarantino who pulled triple duty for this film being it’s director, writer, and one of the actors in the film. Not a bad cast of characters either for a guy making his first film as he pulls in names like Keitel, Buscemi, Penn, Madsen, etc. This was a different time though when Hollywood believed in originality. The film is available on Netflix and I think you should check it out if you never have before. That is why I am going to give the film an A for a final grade.
Back in the late 1990’s, there was a scandal in the Los Angeles Police Department’s CRASH (a task force set up to fight street gangs) department. They believed that there was a lot of corruption in that department and the Rampart division of the LAPD. This film, Rampart, takes place during that time as it follows police officer Dave Brown (Woody Harrelson). Officer Brown is the kind of guy who follows his own brand of justice in life whether it be on the streets where he does things his way or at home with his dysfunctional family. After a beating incident, things begin to fall apart for Brown as he looks to keep his family together as well as his career as he fights to keep his job. The film also stars Bree Olson (21 Jump Street) as Helen, Cynthia Nixon (Sex And The City) as Barbara, Anne Heche (Donnie Brasco) as Catherine, Jon Bernthal (The Wolf Of Wall Street) as Dan Morone, Ben Foster (Alpha Dog) as General, Steve Buscemi (Fargo) as Bill Blago, Robin Wright (The Princess Bride) as Linda, Ned Beatty (The Toy) as Hartshorn, Ice Cube (Ride Along) as Kyle Timkins, Sigourney Weaver (Ghostbusters) as Joan Confrey, and the film was directed by Oren Moverman (Love & Mercy).
I realized as I started to watch the film that I did a double shot of Woody Harrelson for this challenge and I’m glad I did. This film is not only visually stunning, but it’s gritty and it’s dark. You literally see the a man descend from the beginning of the film all the way to the end. What I mean by that is that Woody starts off the film being this tough guy who does things his own way on the streets. He is cocky about it and believes in what he is doing until everything around him starts to fall apart. The more the film goes on, the darker the fall into madness for Woody’s character. There are a lot of scenes in the film which stunningly portray his character as this misanthrope, misogynistic, womanizing man who has no care in the world for how people feel. This film is great for character study and it kind of shows where LA was at in the late 1990’s. Every person from Bree Olson to Ben Foster do an amazing job acting wise that you can’t help, but love this film. Woody’s transformation is unbelievable as well as he just looks sick for most of the film and he gets worse as time goes on in the film. The only thing that I question is the man’s home life as he lives with his ex-wife and his current wife and he has a child with each one. Oh and I almost forgot, they are sisters too. If you’re into films like this one then you should definitely check it out. The film is available on Netflix and with that being said, I am going to give the film an A- for a final grade.
I have always been a big fan of the work of the Coen Brothers (Joel and Ethan) and their films like No Country For Old Men, Raising Arizona, O Brother Where Art Thou?, and True Grit. The on;y problem is that there are two films from the brothers I still have not seen and I checked one off the lost with today’s film in Fargo. The film stars William H. Macy (Boogie Nights) as car salesman Jerry Lundegaard who through a shady source at work gets himself into a lot of trouble. Things just aren’t going the way Jerry wants it so he gets this bright idea to have someone kidnap his wife so they can split the ransom money. Little does he know that his master crime is about to fall apart as pregnant police chief Marge Gunderson (Frances McDormand) gets on the case. The film stars Steve Buscemi (Boardwalk Empire) as Carl Showalter, Peter Stormare (22 Jump Street) as Gaear Grimsrud, Larry Brandenburg (The Shawshank Redemption) as Stan Grossman, Steve Reevis (Dances With Wolves) as Shep, John Carroll Lynch (Ted 2) as Norm Gunderson, Steve Park (Falling Down) as Mike Yanagita, Tony Denman (Go) as Scotty Lundegaard, Harve Presnell (Saving Private Ryan) as Wade Gustafson, and Kristin Rudrüd (Pleasantville) as Judy Lundegaard.
One thing that I definitely have to say about this film is that the writing for the film is absolutely amazing. I truly loved how the story just unfolded right before your eyes as you watch the mess get worse and worse by the minute. You also see the dynamics in some of the relationships in the film like Buscemi and Stormare who the have the worst time communicating with each other or even Macy’s character with Presnell who treats Macy like he doesn’t exist or is just a plain idiot. This is a great example for a character study because the filmmakers focus on that a lot and it helps the film move. The film is gritty, dark, violent, and beautiful all at the same time especially with some of the cinematography which captured the moments perfectly around the cold that surrounds the characters. One of the other things I liked about the film were the accents because they were different. I really enjoyed listening to something different other than a Boston, New York, or southern accent. The acting from everyone was pretty top notch, I didn’t really have any complaints about that at all. If you are studying to be a filmmaker or even a screenwriter this is definitely a film that you want to check out and take notes. Personally one of my favorite films that I have reviewed for this challenge. So, with that being said I am going to go ahead and give this film an A for a final grade.
Believe it or not, today’s Ass Whoopin Wednesday film is one that I have never seen all the way through. When I saw that Netflix had John Carpenter’s Escape From LA available to watch online, I jumped at the opportunity to see it. The film once again stars Kurt Russell as the bad ass outlaw Snake Pilskin. It supposedly 15 years after the events of Escape From New York and the world has changed just a little bit. The president changed the constitution and he rules forever and Los Angeles is no longer apart of California in the year 2013 (only criminals and deported civilians are sent there). The problem is that the president (Cliff Robertson)’s daughter Utopia (A.J. Langer) has stolen a device that takes satellites and it can shut down power all over the world and she is somewhere in LA with the villainous Cuervo Jones (Georges Corraface) . So, the president gets Snake Pilskin into LA to retrieve the device in 10 hours or he dies and the whole world suffers. The film also stars Peter Fonda (Easy Rider) as Pipeline, Steve Buscemi (Boardwalk Empire) as Map To The Stars Eddie, Valeria Golino (Rain Man) as Taslima, Stacy Keach (American History X) as Cmdr. Malloy, Pam Grier (Coffy) as Hershe Las Palmas, Bruce Campbell (Evil Dead) as Surgeon General Of Beverly Hills, Michelle Forbes (Battlestar Galactica) as Brazen, and the film was directed by John Carpenter. To continue reading the rest of the article, please visit it on my Moshpits and Movies wordpress blog here.