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The Gnat's Movie Reviews: Prometheus/Lincoln Vampire Hunter
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RaiderX


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 16, 2010 4:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Big Fan of both movies. Seems all you talk about is Dog Soldiers, Gnat Wink
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bookend57


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 17, 2010 12:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

thoroughly enjoyed Zombieland as well. Good film.
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The Gnat


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

RaiderX wrote:
Big Fan of both movies. Seems all you talk about is Dog Soldiers, Gnat Wink


What can I say, it's a great film Very Happy
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The Gnat


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Repulsion



Roman Polanski, known now for being a messed up dude as much as a director, is actually very brilliant and creates a setting of horror that isnít anything like you see today. This is much more psychological then modern horror films which rely on jumps and gore to make an impact. There is only one real jump scene in this film and you do jump when it happens, but otherwise the setting and atmosphere that is created is just off enough to make you feel uncomfortable while watching it.

The story is of an innocent girl, Carole, lives with her sister. She has lived a repressed existence, but she seems to be functioning fairly well and just innocent with her views of the world. She has a boyfriend who is more into her than she is him, and her sister has a married lover whom Carole is repulsed by. When Caroleís sister, Helen, leaves for a few days on vacation, Caroleís reality starts to crumble around her. Carole falls apart, quitting her job, and hiding herself in the apartment. All of her troubles are compounded when she receives an abusive phone call from her sisterís lovers wife. She imagines everything going wrong, people coming after her and removing her innocence. When Michael, her boyfriend, becomes worried about her and breaks into the apartment, Carole believes that all her horrors are going to come true and kills him. She does the same later with the landlord when he comes to collect the rent.

Normally Iíd go to the actors next and explain what performances were good and which were bad, but besides Carole, Catherine Deneuve, the rest of the actors and actresses see only limited screen time. So the next real thing to talk about is Polanski and his work creating this film. It isnít a typical horror film, but he creates bits and pieces that are just disturbing to watch. There is a rabbit which Carole is supposed to cook when her sister leaves, but instead it is left on a plate, out in the apartment, and we see it decay as time passes, mirroring the decay of Caroleís mind. She imagines a crack in the wall growing and eventually the whole wall crumbling. It is hard to explain the effect that Caroleís decent has on the viewer, but compared to many psychological horror films, Polanski does an amazing job filming it.

Another thing to consider about this film is the fact that with only one character on the screen most of the time there is very limited use of dialog. Now most films often explain everything that is going on, especially common in horror films, and it is rare to have characters in silence. Wall-E is the one film that I think does this brilliantly as well, limitings its dialog. Whereas Wall-E shows love through the actions of the character extremely well, Polanski uses the silence to show off the decay of Carole.

This isnít a film that translates extremely well to a contemporary audience, but it is a really well made film for itís time and Deneuveís performance is one of the best Iíve seen in a horror film. Now people expect a slasher like A Nightmare on Elm Street or gore like in Hostel or a combination of both. Subtle horror films are a thing of the past, but if you can get past the slower pace of the film, Repulsion is really an interesting and creepy experience.

Entertainment Grade: B+

Critical Grade: B+

Overall Grade: B+
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TommyC376


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 23, 2010 9:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I literally just redboxed Zombieland for the 5th time (I watch movies at work). It is a great movie, I'm a huge horror movie buff, I just finished watching the 1931 Frankenstine which was a good movie, I couldnt even imagine watching it in 1931. But I digress, I love zombie movies, Gnat you seem like a horror movie type guy so I was wondering what other horror movies to you recomend.
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The Gnat


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 23, 2010 9:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

TommyC376 wrote:
I literally just redboxed Zombieland for the 5th time (I watch movies at work). It is a great movie, I'm a huge horror movie buff, I just finished watching the 1931 Frankenstine which was a good movie, I couldnt even imagine watching it in 1931. But I digress, I love zombie movies, Gnat you seem like a horror movie type guy so I was wondering what other horror movies to you recomend.


I spend a lot of time with the B type of horror films and a lot of older (read 70's-80's) type of horror films. Besides those reviewed: Dog Soldiers, Repulsion and Zombieland, I highly recommend The Descent if you haven't seen it for something recent, and The Crazies was actually pretty decent. Teeth (horror/dark comedy), The 9th Gate (Polanski, decent horror effort with Depp in it), Severance (horror/gore comedy), Repo! The Genetic Opera (horror/gothic musical), Amy of Darkness (B horror), A Nightmare on Elm Street (originals, any original campy horror film is good, which I'm sure you've already seen most), 28 Days Later (zombies), Ginger Snaps (dark comedy, werewolves), They Live (cult classic horror), From Dusk Til Dawn (great Tarantino vampire film), Hell Raiser (all decent, started gorno genre in some ways because they were literally about pleasure and pain and pain for pleasure), Black Sheep (horror comedy), My Name is Bruce (horror comedy starring Bruce Campbell), The Lost Boys (another solid vampire effort), The Return of the Living Dead (and sequels, cult classic horror), Re-Animator (cult classic horror), Strangeland (pleasure and pain horror film, Dee Snider Twisted Sister front man in the leading role), My Little Eye (interesting premise that works decently well with no big name talent), and Santa's Slay (cult classic, Bill Goldberg, pro wrestler, as Santa)
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The Gnat


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 24, 2010 2:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hot Tub Time Machine



Everyone has seen the raunchy teen comedies (from Superbad to Not Another Teen Movie) and they normally arenít all that great. Everyone has seen the loser grown-up (Will Ferrell) who sits around making fart jokes and being a train wreck of a person. This is a combination of those two films. What happens when three best friends (and a nephew) go back to the ski resort where the three friends had some of their greatest moments. Sure, it has a lot of stupid humor in it, but it has a fair amount of heart (however misguided it is).

As Iíve alluded to, three friends, Adam, Nick and Lou, return to Kodiak Mountain (along with Jacob, Adamís nephew) after Lou almost kills himself. They are trying to bring Lou out of his funk and they hope that this will end up curing him. Unfortunately, the resort isnít quite as they remember it. The place has fallen apart and no one visits there anymore. The only slight saving grace is a hot tub which turns into a time machine. They end up back in 1986, in their old bodies, except for Jacob who is just Jacob. They realize that everything might change in the future if they change the past, so they start out trying to avoid making any change, no matter how slight. That plan falls apart as none of them are particularly happy with where they are now (with the possible exception of Jacob who is living in Adamís basement). They have to figure out how to get back to their future and they end up changing a lot which all works out, surprisingly, for the better.

The performances are all pretty solid. John Cusack is an actor you really can never go wrong with, and in this role, he does a good job. He seems to play similar characters fairly often, someone who is down and out in many ways, but he can do so either dramatically or in a comedy like this one. It is a little raunchier than youíd expect from a film with Cusack in it, but he works really well in the role of Adam. Craig Robinson plays Nick and he is one of those up and coming comedians that is still new enough not to be boring when he does some of his same mannerisms over and over again. His humor in this film is less subtle than that of Cusack, but not purely gross out humor. The gross out humor is provided expertly by Rob Corddry, of Daily Show fame, he has a knack for playing that over the top extremely intense character. It lends itself to some humor, and while he has a lot of the jokes, they donít seem as funny as the jokes that Robinson and Cusack have. Clark Duke plays Jacob, and he does a decent job. He comes across as very nerdy, but overall isnít all that funny in the film. He is more of a character to be poked fun at than to make any of the jokes. He has a chance or two, but we really donít get to see how good a comedian he could be. Lizzy Caplan, Crispin Glover, and Chevy Chase round out the notable cast members. Caplan plays her typical free spirited type of character and Chevy Chase makes a cameo appearance as the hot tub repair man. Chase has a couple of decent lines, and Caplan brings some poignancy to some scenes. But Glover is the one who really puts on a good performance as Phil, the bellhop at the resort. He sometimes seems like a complete and utter -, and other times he becomes unbearably sweet. But he does a good job with him performance.

Visually Steve Pink does little with this film to set it apart from other raunchy comedies. It has a nice eighties feel to it, but there isnít anything special about how this film is shot. What does make this film pop is the eighties sound track pumping in the background. It matches the film extremely well, and I love 80′s music so hearing Motley Crue blaring behind them is just great. Josh Heald and Sean Anders do a good idea with the story, reliving part of your life might not be the most original thing, but they kept the jokes coming throughout the whole film and there were really no lulls, which is important for this type of comedy.

This is a comedy that I would recommend checking out. Sure, it is somewhat raunchy and perverse at some points, but overall the combination of the humor and the bit of heart that it shows works pretty well. It mainly is worth watching for Craig Robinson and John Cusack who really steal the show, and if the subtler humor isnít your thing, Coddry provides a whole lot of physical and raunchy humor.

Entertainment Grade: B+

Critical Grade: C+

Overall Grade: B
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The Gnat


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 9:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World



This film is simply hard to categorize. I went into the film knowing that it was going to be nerdy and what it was about, and I left having seen something very different than I was expecting. Yes, it was nerdy, and yeah, it basically was about what I knew it was going to be about, but the whole atmosphere it created for the film was like nothing I've ever experienced before.

The story is that of Scott Pilgrim, a quiet awkward sort of boy (played by Michael Cera so what do you expect), who is the member of a band, who is 22, and who is dating a 17 year old, as part of his mourning process from a bad relationship. Things, however, change when Ramona Flowers happens to skate through his dreams. He runs into her at a party and after a very awkward attempt to talk to her, asks her out. They go on a date, but there is a catch, Scott has to defeat Ramona's seven evil ex's.

The acting in this film is pretty good. Michael Cera plays his normal awkward character, and he does it well. Kieran Culkin gives the best performance in the film and adds in a lot of the humor with his droll indifference. Anna Kendrick, Ellen Wong, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and Aubrey Plaza all do good jobs in their supporting roles. Most the casting is simply spot on, and most of it is fairly awkward. The awkwardness isn't a bad thing at all in the film.

Visually is where this film fines, the action scenes are simply hilarious. Edgar Wright is a very good director with his previous works of Hot Fuzz and Shaun of the Dead. These action scenes are extremely odd and vary from evil ex to evil ex. The music in the film is also good, fairly typical for what you'd expect, minus a point or two where there is old school video game homages thrown in.

Overall this is a film that is definitely worth checking out. I loved it, but I think it is a film that people will either love or hate because it is so out there and so different from most anything that's been done before (and some people won't like it just because they have an irrational hatred toward Michael Cera).

Critical Grade: B+
Entertainment Grade: A
Overall Grade: A-
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JaguarCrazy2832


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Loved Zombieland. Surprised Scott Pilgrim got a good review, it looked lame
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The Gnat


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 2:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JaguarCrazy2832 wrote:
Loved Zombieland. Surprised Scott Pilgrim got a good review, it looked lame


Yeah, I always thought that Scott Pilgrim looked fun but wasn't expecting all that much from it. And when I saw it, it was what I expected, but 100x better than you'd expect from a film with it's premise.
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The Gnat


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 3:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

District 9



This film got rave reviews and I always thought that it looked decent at best, but I finally got around to watching it last night since it is up on netflix for streaming. I think it was better than I expected it to be, but I felt that message it was presenting was extremely specific and pointed and you weren't able to get anything out of the film besides that they told you get out of it. This turns me off when it comes to films, however, for being shot the way it was, it wasn't all that bad.

The story is of an alien race ending up over South Africa and settled in with the community, however, there are tensions between the humans and the aliens mirroring racial tensions. It follows a man from the MNU, the governing human body over the aliens as he tries to relocate them to a camp separate from the humans and then his turn as things go wrong. The story isn't bad, but it does really beat home the whole racial reconciliation point that it was going for, similar to what Crash does, and it leaves you feeling a bit cheated in the emotions that you feel from it.

The acting is quite good in this film. The lead, Sharlto Copley, is a relative newcomer, but he shows off some very good acting shops in this film. The rest of the cast isn't focused on nearly as much as he deals primarily with the aliens.

Visually is what really works in this film, more than the story, as it is shot at times in a documentary style and other times, like a normal film. They blend to two together nicely to tell the whole story and get a different feel for the point of view. The aliens are very well done and that makes this film better than some as they don't feel like hokey aliens but appear that they have been living among us for 20 years and are part of humanity in many ways, just a persecuted race at times.

Overall I enjoyed this film more than I thought I would, even though I didn't love it. Mainly I enjoyed Copley's performance, even if I didn't love his character (bit to predictable), and the visuals in this film. It is worth watching simply for the visual aspect of the film, but not one I feel a need to watch again, or to watch a sequel of if/when that happens.

Critical Grade: B
Entertainment Grade: C+
Overall Grade: B-
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Lions017


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 3:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

These are fun reviews. I also tend to look at films two ways - both in terms of quality and in entertainment value, with the final score coming from a combination of both. The James Bond films might entertain me more than anything else, for example, but I don't give them all 8 or 9's. Some parts of them, no matter how entertaining they might be, just aren't done very well.
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Iron B


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 5:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Gnat wrote:
District 9



This film got rave reviews and I always thought that it looked decent at best, but I finally got around to watching it last night since it is up on netflix for streaming. I think it was better than I expected it to be, but I felt that message it was presenting was extremely specific and pointed and you weren't able to get anything out of the film besides that they told you get out of it. This turns me off when it comes to films, however, for being shot the way it was, it wasn't all that bad.

The story is of an alien race ending up over South Africa and settled in with the community, however, there are tensions between the humans and the aliens mirroring racial tensions. It follows a man from the MNU, the governing human body over the aliens as he tries to relocate them to a camp separate from the humans and then his turn as things go wrong. The story isn't bad, but it does really beat home the whole racial reconciliation point that it was going for, similar to what Crash does, and it leaves you feeling a bit cheated in the emotions that you feel from it.

The acting is quite good in this film. The lead, Sharlto Copley, is a relative newcomer, but he shows off some very good acting shops in this film. The rest of the cast isn't focused on nearly as much as he deals primarily with the aliens.

Visually is what really works in this film, more than the story, as it is shot at times in a documentary style and other times, like a normal film. They blend to two together nicely to tell the whole story and get a different feel for the point of view. The aliens are very well done and that makes this film better than some as they don't feel like hokey aliens but appear that they have been living among us for 20 years and are part of humanity in many ways, just a persecuted race at times.

Overall I enjoyed this film more than I thought I would, even though I didn't love it. Mainly I enjoyed Copley's performance, even if I didn't love his character (bit to predictable), and the visuals in this film. It is worth watching simply for the visual aspect of the film, but not one I feel a need to watch again, or to watch a sequel of if/when that happens.

Critical Grade: B
Entertainment Grade: C+
Overall Grade: B-


I loved it...Did you also get the what the ship was..I am just realizing the ship conditions were that of a slave [inappropriate/removed] when the just found them, They scared, in the dark, sick, starving and covered in their own waste.
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The Gnat


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 20, 2010 9:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Law Abiding Citizen

I was never all that interested in seeing this film because I was quite confident that I knew exactly what was going to happen from seeing the trailer. But I do try and watch every film with an open mind, and so that is what I did with this film. It is an intense action-packed legal thriller, for lack of better description, but, unfortunately, it comes off feeling, as one of the people I saw it with put it, a Law and Order version of Saw. It is predictable, and not nearly as smart as it thinks, and while I can understand how come some people really like it because you can get sucked up into the intensity and action and "righteous rage" that this film forces down your throat, it just leaves you with a hollow feeling when you've finished watching it.

The story starts out being very straightforward and not pulling any punches as you "see" the brutal murder of the main character's, Clyde's, family in front of him. It then jumps to Nick Rice, the lawyer on the case, making a deal with one of the murderers, the worse of the two, in order to get a death row conviction on the other criminal and Clyde's taking issue with them offering the one killer a deal. Then jump to 10 years later when the death row conviction is being carried out, and the lethal injection goes wrong and the evidence points to the other killer. The other killer is "saved" by an anonymous phone call which leads him to Clyde who is impersonating a cop. Clyde then starts his "righteous revenge" on everyone in the trial all as an attempt to prove that everyone should be prosecuted and get what they deserve.

What doesn't work in this story is that, while you aren't supposed to feel complete sympathy for Clyde, you can feel almost none because of the actions that he takes, and the whole message seems forced and contrived with how they reach it. Also, the whole idea of the film is that the judicial system has too many loop holes and criminals can go free (which is unfortunate and sad) but Clyde has to break out of prison to actually get his revenge on everyone, therefore defeating much of his message because he can not deliver it from within the confines of the system and doesn't apply the same rules to himself as he wants applied to everyone else. Even if he doesn't care if he gets death or not, he still doesn't abide by the rules he wants to force into place. It also doesn't work because Clyde, to get all his devious and destructive ways was someone who he should hate. He was a "brain trust" killer for the government, he could figure out ways to kill people without being seeing and would perform hits, basically, for the government. So he was taking it to the opposite end, being judge, jury, and executioner all by himself (or based off of the information that others gave him).

The acting performances in this film were average. Jamie Foxx, as Nick, does a good job and gives a solid performance. Gerard Butler is the "star" of the film playing Clyde, and while he does have a sinister and evil vibe to him, the actual performance isn't anything to write home about. The rest of the cast plays very secondary roles, and no one really jumps out as being all that great. This film is much less about the acting (or story) then the intensity that they create in the film.

Visually it is fairly disturbing and fairly strong. There isn't anything that blows you away with how the film is shot, but there are a couple of maybe intentional homages to Alfred Hitchcock and The Godfather. Hitchcock was known for not showing the actual violence and killings and simply showing it through shadows or implying when it happens, and in this film, F. Gary Gray, the director, does something similar, avoiding showing the most gruesome scenes, but telling you exactly what happened in them. He does, however, so much more than Hitchcock ever would have. In terms of The Godfather, there is one point, early on in the film, when Clyde is killing off the second murder, that the story is juxtaposed with Nick's daughters cello recital, I couldn't help but think the whole time I was watching that it was fairly similar to The Godfather where it juxtaposes a baptism with the murders of all the heads of rival gangs.

Overall this film isn't a bad film to watch, however, it isn't anything all that special, and there are better revenge flicks out there. It preaches it's message way to much, and it pretends to be much more righteous than it actually is. The fact of the matter is, Clyde is a sick demented character who pretended to have a point to his revenge but in reality there is no way that it was anything beyond revenge that would drive a person to become like Clyde. I'd primarily say skip watching this film because there are better revenge films out there, and there is no other unique feature that makes this film worth checking out.

Entertainment Grade: C+

Critical Grade: D

Overall Grade: D+
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jetsfan4life51


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 20, 2010 10:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Damn, I really liked Law Abiding Citizen. I thought Entertainment wise it would at least get a B.
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