Order of One: Kung Fu Killing Spree (2006) – Film

“Order of One: Kung Fu Killing Spree”

Movie #27: 31- Days of Horror Challenge 2018

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Sonny, who has spent the previous 6 years in prison, is being transported to a Super Max prison to finish his sentence, when he and his police escort stop at a diner for a 2 AM lunch.  Unfortunately, at the same diner, Ross, a journalist is meeting with a man who possesses the Sword of Destiny, a mythical blade which imbues whoever touches it with powers.  Mr. Park, a Korean mob boss who has been searching for years for the sword, has sent this deadly minions, lead by his nephew, Tommy, to get the Sword of Destiny, and all hell breaks loose.  Continue reading

Sharktopus Vs Pteracuda (2014) – TV Movie

“Sharktopus Vs Pteracuda”

Movie #25: 31- Days of Horror Challenge 2018

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In this sequel to Sharktopus, a water-park biologist, Lorena, has found and raised a juvenile after finding an egg sac which made its way back to the ocean when its mother had been destroyed in the original.  When a genetic weapons development company, run by Dr. Symes, gets involved, after losing control of their solution to is the replace drone technology, the Pteracuda, Dr. Symes has the brilliant idea of pitting Sharktopus against Pteracuda and ultimately have control of both.  This works out as expected. Continue reading

Jurassic Park Trilogy- Films

Jurassic Park Trilogy

I decided to revisit these because the franchise is still alive and the newest one will be out on Blu-ray on Tuesday.

Jurassic Park (1993)

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On an island off the coast of Costa Rica, John Hammond has built a park with some very unusual attractions and a whole lot of complications.  The story is fairly straight forward, John uses the cloning technology from InGen Bio-engineering and fossilized dinosaur DNA to breed dinosaurs, creating a theme park on an Isla Nebular.  Before the park opens, he has an archaeologist and paleontologist, a lawyer representing his investors, another scientist, and his grandchildren visit the park for a test run.  One of John’s employees, trying to make extra money on the side, causes a catastrophic failure in the security system, allowing the dinosaurs to run amok.

A great cast with scene stealing performances by Lord Richard Attenborough is simply wonderful in this!  Fantastically well cast as the overly optimistic, overly ambitious, and overly naive John Hammond; and Jeff Goldblum as Ian Malcolm, the overly overtly sexy chaos theorist.

As this is the first film of the series, the story is very clear that the technology and concept of the island park is new and needs a lot of work, so even the “dated” aspects work for the franchise as a whole.   Although the sciences in this film are dated, and there are some serious eye-roll moments, the extraordinary animatronics and CGI more than make up for it.  Over-all, 25 years later, this movie is still worth watching.

This one gets 4 fru-fru drinks.

 

 

 

The Lost World: Jurassic Park 2 (1997)

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Ian Malcom’s reluctant adventure with the dinosaurs continues on Isla Sorna, the Park Site B, an island where Hammond’s dinosaurs were allowed to roam free and create their own ecosystem.   A research team has been sent by Hammond to photograph and learn about the dinosaurs in the habitat they’ve created, but InGen, a bio-engineering company, arrives hunting and collecting the dinos to bring them to a zoo in San Diego, an amphitheater of Hammond’s design which he had abandoned for the island park featured in the first film.

The concept of the story is really good.  They maintained the spectacular effects, with animatronics, maybe relying a little too heavily on the CGI than they had on the first.  However the script, specifically the dialogue is not so much with the good, regardless of the terrific cast.   Jeff Goldblum’s Ian Malcolm was a poor choice for a leading character.  His negative, paranoid yet swaggering, “rock star,” declarative personality doesn’t make him a believable action hero, mostly because the character doesn’t seem to have evolved much, if at all, from the first movie, and nor does he appear to develop during this one.  Where in the first film, Malcolm was hot, in this he is simply lukewarm.  Vince Vaughn’s Nick Van Owen made a much more convincing hero, and could easily have been re-written to be the leading man.  The addition of Malcolm’s daughter, who stows away, was an unfortunate choice to keep the franchise “family friendly” and add the “child peril” tension.   Julienne Moore’s Sarah Harding starts out as a strong, passionate, professionally driven, independent character who very quickly is reduced to simply defer to all that Ian Malcolm commands, after a token argument.    And Pete Postlewhaite, as Roland Tembo, steals every scene he is in with his unparalleled charisma and talent.

I’m sure you have noticed, dear reader, that I was minimally impressed by this movie.  It has all the thrills and tension that made the first so good, but spending more time and effort on the human element of the film would have made it so much better, and as I have frequently said, being able to connect in some way with the characters is one of my highest priorities in a movie.

I gave this one 2 fru fru drinks.

 

 

 

Jurassic Park 3 (2001)

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Dr. Alan Grant is tricked to go to Isla Sorna on what he is told is a fly-over tour, but is actually a mission to rescue the child of a couple who was lost while on vacation.

While this is better written, by far, than The Lost World, it has no passion.  This, too, is a rescue story, however, it seems that people have decided to essentially quarantine Isla Sorna from the outside world, ineffectively.  The action, thrilling, and more violent scenes are softened significantly.  Again, it is filled with a talented cast, but this is a safe family movie.  By which I mean, no real risks were taken, everything is nicely predictable from the revisiting of Dr. Grant and Ellie, to the feel-good ending, including the fact that the audience enjoys it for the “popcorn flick” it is, and it made money.  It also means that it’s rather unmemorable.  I’d forgotten that I’d seen it until I started watching it, and then realized why.

I gave this 2 1/2 “virgin” fru-fru drinks.
1/2

 

 

 

The franchise is definitely worth watching and revisiting periodically.  I love the fact that the sequels are separated by several years and they don’t try to pick up where each had left off.  It makes re-watching the movies, and accepting the dated parts, more palatable.  Even though the character set up is formulaic, specifically the consistent themes of romance and child peril, it is a story we grew with, and is worth continuing to grow if they keep building in this world.

The whole franchise gets 3 1/2 drinks for working, for not trying to pretend not to be dated, and for building a wonderful exciting new world which as been the fantasy of kids for generations!
1/2

 

 

 

The Horde (2016) – TV Movie

“The Horde”

Movie #7: 31-Days of Horror Challenge

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A group of High School photography students, their teacher, and her former-Navy Seal boyfriend go on a weekend camping trip to Sapphire Lake.  Once night falls, they are attacked by a horde deformed, inbred folk who live in the forest around the lake.   Continue reading

Raiders of the Damned (2007) – Film

“Raiders of the Damned”

Movie #6: 31-Days of Horror Challenge

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In a post-apocalyptic world, a helicopter carrying a pair of scientists, humanity’s best hope for survival, is brought down by an army of highly intelligent rotting corpses.  Dr. Lewis, whose sanity is, at best, questionable, puts together a team of misfit, broken, and disillusioned soldiers, the only ones capable of retrieving the scientists.  Continue reading

Edge of Tomorrow (2014) – Film

“Edge of Tomorrow”

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Charming spokesperson, Major William Cage, though not a “real” soldier, according to him, is sent to the front line in the war against an invading alien race on a suicide mission.  Once there he is swiftly killed in battle by an unusual looking alien.  However, he awakens to find that he is repeating the same day… over and over.  He meets Vrataski, who seems to understand what happened to him and helps him train to hopefully defeat the alien invasion.  Continue reading

Feast 3: The Happy Finish (2009) – Film

“Feast 3: The Happy Finish”

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31 Days of Horror Challenge: Movie #19

As before, Part 3 picks up directly where Part 2 left off, the survivors numbers continue to diminish.  They encounter new potential saviors, including Shitkicker, The Profit, and Jean Claude Seagal, and discover that the creatures originated at a place called “The Hive.”   As the survivors seek shelter in and try to escape through the sewers trying to get to the big city. Continue reading

Marvel Cinematic Universe: Phase 2 – Film

“Marvel Cinematic Universe: Phase 2”

Iron Man 3 (2013)

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I had reviewed this film when I first saw it.

Our favorite billionaire, genius, playboy, hero, Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.), a.k.a., Iron Man, returns and discovers, that sometimes, mistakes from the past can come back to haunt us.  In this case, in the form of Aldrich Killian (Guy Pearce),  leader of Advanced Idea Mechanics (AIM) and  The Mandarin (Ben Kingsley), an outspoken villain targeting the U.S. and Iron Man with his evilly twisted homage and lessons in history. Continue reading

Marvel Cinematic Universe: Phase 1 – Film

“Marvel Cinematic Universe: Phase 1”

Now that Phase 3 has begun with the release of Captain America: Civil War, I decided it’s time to revisit the movies which were chosen to spearhead this huge and hugely ambitious project. Continue reading