Saturday, July 30, 2011

THE SMURFS: A (HUGE) Steaming Pile of Smurf -- by Nat Hall

Dear Snooden,

I  have taken it upon myself to send you my review of the Smurf movie since said movie would probably not be seen by anybody else unless their 4 year old daughter was extra good and used her cuteness to sucker a parent into to taking her... Please use this as the title:

A (HUGE) Steaming Pile of Smurf.

This movie sucked the smurfing life out of me.  I wasn't hip to it in the first place because it had Neil Patrick Harris as a star.  I have nothing against the smurffer 'cept the fact that I missed the memo saying he is our "go-to guy" when the script was going to be the smurfingest stinker of a script.  I am not saying that he is not a funny guy but he is only funny in 10-15 minutes at a time. Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog? 15 min episodes.  Harold and Kumar movies? 10 minutes at MOST.  How I Met Your Smurfing Mother?  He is PART of cast of 20 in a 30 minute screen time is what?? Maybe 5 minutes??  HELLO did we forget about Doogie Howser???  Seriously is that now the man about whom we are going to say "Smurf it!  That man can carry a smurfing movie!"

Katy Perry: Not Embarrassed. Smurfette: Embarrassed for her
Since we are on the smurfing subject, why wasn't anybody other than Katie Perry not embarassed to smurf to the world that they were voicing these little blue Smurfers?  I would shamefully cash in that smurfing check as well but good for them for not exploiting the fact and smurf their careers.  Except for NPH and Tim Gunn.  Did I say Tim Gunn??  Oh.My.Smurf!   Time Gunn turns to NPH and says "That can't be a good sign."  OMS(murf)!!!  I was smurfing the same thing!  When you have to use "Make it Work" just to get me to cluck in a movie that is smurfing low.  I was seriously smurfing pissed that my smurfing fashionista was using this smurfing terrible situation to use those inspiring words that I often hear when I'm up smurf creek without a paddle. (It's also the only line in the whole movie that tells you where this movie is going and what the audience is thinking.)  What's next??? 

 It would have been more entertaining if they were busy blowing rainbows out of their smurfs instead of them going around smurfing everybody up the smurf.  Actually that is what I felt like, because I was seriously the biggest steaming pile of smurf.

So basically I sat my fat smurf in an uncomfortable seat for far too long and was not happy about it even though my 4 year-old thought it was just ok.  Are you smurfing kidding me??? My smurfing 4 year old thought it was just okay.  Although with Tim Gunn in the picture I know she too had higher hopes.  I might as well have burned the smurfing wad of cash that I spent on that Smurfing turd.  It wouldn't have been as smelly either.   

So in conclusion you would be better off without smurfing this smurfety movie.  Smurf them!

Editor's Note:
This movie also has a cameo by Joan Rivers.  While 9 out of 10 Joan Rivers scientist agree that The Smurf Movie could in no way help her career, that tenth guy pointed out that letting small children become familiar with her face now

will help them to accept her (and buy her products) more successfully later when she looks like this:

Watch out for Ms River's Miracle Spray-On Moisture Skin and Stretching Rack to be featured exclusively on QVC!  (Product will be available in 2032.)

Thursday, July 28, 2011


THE SEASON OF THE WITCH and RED RIDING HOOD both get a (5) because I couldn't actually pay attention to either of them. They both might actually merit a different score (higher or lower) but I can't be bothered to watch them again.

I rented these movies because they looked like the perfect thing to ignore while converting these:
  into these:
You know, like one does.

Which is to say that while I'm a bit squiffy on the intricate plot details, I certainly managed to form an opinion in spite of all the paint fumes and hot glue burns.

SEASON OF THE WITCH is set during the Crusades and the Plague and has a witch and Nicholas Cage, blah blah blah.  What you really need to know is it has this guy:
Ron Perlman

If you don't know him right away you may recognize him as this guy:
"Didn't I kill you already?"

or, for all you Airbender kids out there, this guy:
"You WILL learn respect!"
Is this movie over yet?
Basically Ron Perlman is the man so I was happy to see him.  He's pretty much the only bright spot in a very dim film.  I expected this movie to be a basic horror flick but there was a surprising amount of sword fighting and junk like that.  Nick Cage does his (now-standard) Droopy Dog act, we had to be introduced to characters whom were so covered in dirt as to be interchangeable,  and it was a huge relief when the demons finally showed up so the mess could be over.  Of course there was the obligatory "The Church is horrible!" theme running through the whole thing.
Your outfit is more glamorous than mine! Die!
Really, one can't NOT have someone with entirely modern sensibilities standing around in the 1300's and pointing out that the Crusades were appalling and killing random women for causing a plague is a dumb idea. (Well, unless she's Typhoid Mary.)  If they didn't have someone making commentary on all the horror or demanding that an accused witch "receive a fair trial." (Did those even exist in the 14th century?) then there's a chance someone somewhere might decide that going to a middle eastern country and killing everyone because they don't believe the same things you believe is a really good idea.  (Um, it's not.)

So, ho hum, this movie happened, and if you want to see more Ron Perlman just wait 'till August. He's gonna be in the new Conan movie! (Yay!)

RED RIDING HOOD was a TWILIGHT wannabe starring Amanda Seyfried and some other alleged eye candy.  They even got the dad from the TWILIGHT series to be the dad in this movie.   Everyone was suspiciously clean and attractive and "Valerie" was the most special special snowflake in a teeny tiny town. She is so special, in fact, that the "hot" woodcutter dangerous (wolf)boy and the "rich" quiet not-very-muscular-for-being-a-blacksmith boring guy are competing over her.  She has snarky friends, creepy family connections, a hot red cloak, and nothing to worry about except for an arranged marriage until the.. wait for it.. the RED MOON COMES!!  Ah-ooooo!!!!  (That was a wolf howl. They're hard to spell.)

Luckily Gary Oldman shows up right about then to A) explain what a red moon means, B) cackle delightedly as the townspeople are murdered by a werewolf, and C) slow-roast unwilling mentally impaired witnesses.  So, you know, your average middle-ages purple-dress-wearing warrior-priest.  Everyone is naturally appalled at his behavior and eventually he gets what's coming to him but not before a lot of shouting, sneering, and pseudo-science.

Of course the the boys rescue her from the wolf, grandma gets eaten, and they almost have sex next to a blazing fire in a barn full of dry hay, but other than that it's pretty normal.  Well, normal in a TWILIGHT way.

The overall production value was on par with a really good Xena:Warrior Princess episode.  (Or, if you prefer something more manly, Hercules: The Legendary Journeys starring Kevin Sorbo.) The wolf was about as good as a TWILIGHT wolf.  I did like that the girls in the village had period-appropriate (aka "ugly") hair compared to her.  I always love to see the first rule of period costuming followed: "Make the leading lady hot. Ignore every bit of the 200 hours of historical costuming research you just did and MAKE  HER HOT!!"

Since I don't much like Ms Seyfried, this seems like a lot of work. She looks like this:
and she reminds me of this:

I rest my case.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Captain America: a Rebuttal -- by my sister Caroline

Ok, I'd like to defend my "That was really good" statement as Natalie so nicely pointed out and mocked.

Yes, she has a point in that this movie is TOTALLY ridiculous  in the  "it's big, it's small, it's big again!" consistency  aspect.

Besides the magical pants (they turned into tight & short capri's on the buff guy), towards the end our military looked like they were all dressed in Desert Storm white and tan camo. (Weird, since the rest of the movie,it looked like everything was green, or brown?   Did we run out of regular camo or what?)  But other than that,  the costuming was good; well, maybe not good as in award winning, but it was pretty. For the majority of the time, it seemed to flow with the 40s theme.

Speaking of 40s themed movies, remember Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow?  That movie sucked.  This one didn't

I've seen my share of pooptastic movies. Just off the top of my head, some of the poopiest movies:   The Book of Mormon Movie Part I (Sister Rose the head costumer, fresh off a church gym roadshow, apparently had personal issues against irons and/or ironing, or anything not on the Walmart dollar fabric bin, or found at garage sales, or stolen from the camping gear closet.  I could almost see the gluestick glue holding crap together.)

Then there's everyone's fav to hate: Glitter, (if you haven't seen this,  it's a must, to establish a baseline of badness) and more recently, Bridesmaids. (Tirade on this to follow shortly)   In comparison to these and other pooperific shows, Captain America "was really good".  It was fun. It was campy.  It was superhero movie and since I have never, nor will ever care to read the comic, I'm ok with any departures they may or may not have taken from the source material. I didn't hate myself for watching it. I knew going in that it's not Masterpece Theater.  It is a popcorn movie.  Of course it was cheesy.  Of course I have to suspend belief. Isn't that why we go to the movies in the first place, to suspend belief?   Didn't we do that in Transformers 1&2, and tell ourselves Megan Fox could act? (Running, screaming, mouth breathing, flipping the hair, bending over with her bum towards the camera... wow, I think I know what her audition tape was like.)  (Oops. Did I just say that out loud?) And won't we do it again for Transformers 3?  Summer movies are not about reality, they are about an escape from reality and by that measure Captain America WAS "really good."

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Captain America -- as dictated by my sister who refuses to suspend disbelief

PLEASE NOTE: this entire entry is a spoiler.

I don't care how you start it. It's not my blog. I don't blog

It was the most stupid movie ever. It made no sense. None. Oh, well, yeah, it made sense ‘cause there was a plot or something but NONE of that crap was even possible.  Like, hello physics!

And there's no point in even playing 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon because EVERYONE is in this movie. It's over. Like, really? Really Tommy Lee Jones?  And the girl had a British accent for no good reason. She was an "agent" … of what? Who knows…

And then there was Hugo Weaving doing an Arnold impersonation. If I closed my eyes I would swear... 1989 Arnold-- not the governator Arnold, terminator Arnold.  All of these little cute Nazis speaking with Austrian accents ‘cause that’s what Germans do. Speak English with an Austrian accent.
So stupid.

 He’s a sad sad USO officer performing for the troops in Italy when all of a sudden the girl shows up with the 110th. “Oh! my buddy is in the 110th.”  Really?  That’s a surprise? So ridiculous.  Then Tommy Lee Jones shows up and now he's in charge of the 110th. Really? Like that would just happen when he was in R&D just a few months ago? Tommy Lee says “Oh yeah, 110th just got their asses kicked. They got captured. We left 400 guys behind enemy lines”  Captain America says “Whataya gonna do about it?” and Tommy Lee says “We’re gonna leave em there! We‘d kill more men then we‘d save.” 

So Captain steals a girl helmet from a USO girl, which is of course real cause USO girls get real helmets, and then is on a plan being flown by Mr Stark. He stole a plane? How did they get in the air?  30 miles somewhere behind enemy lines he jumps out of the plane under fire and the girl just stands there silhouetted in the doorway bullets flying everywhere. Girl is definitely too stupid to live.
He then magically finds a honking huge factory making bombs, which just happens to be the base for HYDRA.  And the bad guys.. that' the best icon you can come up with?

The Regretsy octopus?

 Steam punk octopus is so ten minutes ago. So stupid. It was ridiculous. Yeah…
His friend happens to be there too. Only one guard on prisoners. Everyone has pulse weapons but no one can hit anything... with pulse weapons.  Pulse weapons that disintegrate everything.  So Stormtrooper. He frees the prisoners who now somehow have guns and no one picks up pulse weapons. 

Then bad guy rips off his face in a Mission Impossible way. Lovely. Really? So stupid.  It was during the little mano a mano scene that happens on the catwalk.  When Captain America showed up the bad guy started the self-destruct sequence but then he wandered around for ten minutes while things exploded.  Oh yeah, he used regular explosives to blow up it up. Not this superior tech lying around, No.  Pulse weapons everywhere and he used crap dynamite to blow up all the blue lasers. Right. Just ridiculous.

So there the good guys all are, 30 miles behind enemy lines, in a tank, and all 400 guys survive in spite of pulse weapons, and next we see Tommy Lee Jones dictating a letter about how everyone is dead when they show up at allied camp... Girl runs out and says “You’re late.”   It’s morning and he’s late? Yeah…  I’m pretty sure it took more than 4 hours to walk 30 miles through enemy checkpoints.

 Then it just goes downhill from there.. the nonsense just keeps going.

Seriously, I had to stop talking because it was so ridiculous. I wouldn’t' have shut up the last 20 min.  So stupid. A huge boomerang-shaped plane,  huge, massive, with 4 huge propellers AND 2 big flame jets/ afterburners... Which they decide to chase with a CAR.  The scale of the plane keeps changing -- it's big, it's small, it's big, it's small  right? So Hagrid.  Make up your mind.... So they are chasing it and his magical vibranium shield protected him from being decapitated.  Magic size-changing propellers vs. Magical boomeranging vibranium shield.  It’s supposed to have no ricochet so it’s obviously called vibranium... That’s there with unobtanium but right below it on the bullshit periodic table of magical substances  

Kills me no one would touch the pulse weapons. No one. We couldn't possibly stop and pick up a weapon on the way, no....  Did we bring one back for research? No. We don't need your Nazi tech. We're good. We kill with bullets.

Anyway, he's on the plane in the bomber deck and sees missiles which are labeled Boston, Philly, and New York. Really? They're German. Yeah Germans might label missiles but they wouldn't do it in English.  Then he's fighting drones on the plane but do any of them stop and say Alert! Intruder! Alarm!? Nope.  Then it turns out these super duper bombs were actually little planes. He got onto one of them and it dropped out the plane and Behold! it’s a bomb with a cockpit and a back propeller!  A bad guy looses his grip and gets sucked through the propeller.. which made no impact on the actual function of the plane. No, that wouldn't dent a rotor at all.

So then he pulled himself from the back, opened the cockpit, ejected the pilot, who missed the rotor this time, climbs into the cockpit, which now has no seat but never mind, and then he Death Stars it.  Shoots the missile right up the cooter of the massive wing plane the bad guy is in, gets out, and goes upstairs to have a 20 min conversation with the bad guy... All this time the bad guy isn't concerned.  He’s filing his nails, watching Captain America on CCTV with his 40's equiptment while en rout to NYC by way of the Artic circle. It's so stupid.
So he gets to the main deck, a huge open soundstage which is allegedly the main cockpit of this plane, and he charges up to the one seat up front and Surprise! the bad guy is hiding behind the door -- like they do.  They have a big talk-off then they kinda fight and then the bad guy, who is now The Mask,

smacks Captain America w his own shield, which is embarrassing, and shoots him with a cute pulse gun, which only makes a tiny hole in the window...

Oh, by the way, at the very beginning when he's running barefoot and half naked in his magical pants through NYC he totally busts through a plate glass window.  He was totally fine.  I’m pretty sure they didn’t have safety glass in the 1940's. No one gets hurt with any glass ever.  Oh yeah.   Yeah.  So stupid.

Magical pants.
He's super hot in his magical pants.  Because the 9 year old body double he was before...
Who puts someone in a huge pressure cooker/tanning bed with woolen pants and a belt on? Really? I’m pretty sure those don't stretch for shit. Pretty sure when he wakes up and is all buff, a 9 year old's pants aren't gonna fit. Ridiculous.

So he fights with the dude.. oh the whole super sphere tech is some cubiform which The Mask got in the beginning.  That was a stupid side plot which took up 5 min at the beginning. So they’re fighting...  Oh, by the way, this huge room happens to have this generator with the Cube of Thor in it.  So when Captain Miracle Pants throws a 200 lb bad guy onto this generator, it magically injures the Thor conductor unlike anything else they've managed to do to this plane so far.

So it gets damaged. So he's right there on it, right? So Mask picks it up in his hand... and he melts half way, the plane somehow goes clear, goes trans-dimensional, suddenly there is the Milky Way, somehow Baddie was gone and there is a huge pulse of light. We don't know where he went. Perhaps he became the red skin guy in Green Lantern? right? Ha.
So stupid. 

Yeah, so he's gone.  And he drops the cube of Thor ‘cause when you get shot into space you'd leave that shit behind. Whatever. Getting teleported…. So, the cube of Thor melts through the plane and drops somewhere in Iceland. Captain already killed 5 dudes downstairs, bad guy is gone, so is by himself in a huge plane which is "going too fast towards New York!"  Yeah. Too fast to land. Girl takes over air flight control, kicks  everyone out for some reason, then he tells her he can't stop it in time to land.. “I’ll take it into the ocean..”   ‘Cause that's the only fucking way you can get that plane out of the sky? I’m pretty sure there's a field somewhere he can land it in. Try Canada. They've got room.  But no, taking it into the ocean is the only thing he can do. 

Anyway, he talks to the girl, yeah... takes the plane down magically in 2 minutes into a huge snow pile which happens to be the Arctic Circle somehow... and she's talking to him and it goes scratchy and then he cuts out.

Tragic. She never got to have her little dance with him. What. Ever. So ridiculous.

So, get this.. if the guys from Mythbusters, if Adam and Jamie can land a plane only with instructions from air traffic control on a first try with no experience flying planes at all, I’m pretty sure that crashing into the Arctic Circle wasn't his only option
So stupid. Like, Really?

Yeah. And then he wakes up and he’s in some room and it's all 40's and stuff and he’s lying in a bed and he's like “Wait! I know that baseball game!” So he busts through the soundstage wall, cause obviously he knew it was one? and proceeds to run his way from the 8th floor through the elevators out to Times Square, because OF COURSE he’s being kept a block from Times Square and not in a containment center in Iceland. So they scramble a bunch of Prius-looking Acuras and surround him in Times Square while he does a 360 gawk. No tire squealing, no wrecks, just quiet polite NYC traffic, right?  Then Samuel fucking L. Jackson comes out to say, “We just wanted you to be comfy when you woke up. You gonna be okay man?” and he says “Yeah…”

Then roll credits and the credits were better than the movie.

We waited through every single credit. the key grips, the 3d cutout people, everyone's assistants, hairdressers, assistants to the caterers, union symbols... .and at the very end a sign pops up that says

Captain America can next be seen in The Avengers.

The whole theater yelled BOO!!!!

It was beautiful. Beautiful 3D. Did a good a good job with the CGI making him a 10 year old. Made his face skinny. Wasn't creepy. They did a good job. But it wasn't, what do you call that, the uncanny valley. No. It wasn't either for The Mask but that was mostly just makeup. They did a very good job. Kudos to the Foley on that one.  3D was really pretty. Everything was in depth. There wasn't just one thing which poked you in the eye like they normally do. Only once.  The hood ornament on the bad guy's car was a  Regretsy octopus that jumped out and poked you in the eye. Sharktapus!

Yeah…. Caroline was like “that was really good!” really?

I do love Stanley Tucci though. And Hugo with his Arnold Swartzenegger accent...

And I am SO GLAD he did not get the girl. Now he's an 80 year old virgin.. HA!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Don't worry, I'm not a professional

I have had this blog since 2005.  Which means I am A) old, B) possibly narcissistic, and C) apparently really fond of constructing sentences where I label things by letter.  I periodically go through phases when I really enjoy writing and/or watching movies and this has been a fun place to do that.  It's also been a way to be anonymously snarky about people who are wealthier and more successful than I am.  So, go me.

Then, this happened:
Someone dropped a Toblerone on my stats page.

Yeah.  It's weird, right?  This totally epic increase of... what posting was that exactly?  Oh yeah, this one.   Now, normally I think I'm pretty funny but, contrary to the filmmakers expectations, a movie review of Atlas Shrugged doesn't generate that many hits. Nope.  However, this does:

not actually porn. really.

Yup.  This picture created a storm of traffic because apparently 2,724 people Googled the phrase "kung fu panda porn."   That's right, animated panda porn.  And don't think this was limited to one particular region of the world, oh no.  From Morocco to Brazil, Indonesia to Poland, everybody wants them some hot CGI plushie action.

Now, I know very well that no one is actually reading my blog.  There's  no time for that even if they A) were fluent in English and B) cared.  Nope, I'm just generating 200 hits a week with a picture of a tiger and a snake AND because I tagged something with the phrase "hipster clothing."   So, I am very much aware that I am not that cool, that I don't have a multi-national fan base, and that there is no book deal in the works.

This is not a photo of me... yet.
However, it's becoming tricky to look at these numbers and actually write.  It's sort of like the difference between getting dressed to run to the Wal-Mart at 11pm on a Tuesday night and getting dressed to be filmed in a reality show about people who visit Wal-Mart at 11pm on a Tuesday night.  HUGE difference there, even if no one would ever watch a reality show about people who visit Wal-Mart at 11pm on a Tuesday night.  (Okay, well, maybe I would.  But only if they play hide-and-seek.)  It's gotten so bad that I'm starting to not want to go to the movies because then I would feel guilty for not blogging it, or worse, blogging badly

I know, that IS an embarrassing panty line
I know I am being ridiculous. I know that as long as I occasionally run a spell check on this mess I won't end up the object of mass derision and scorn.  I know that this blog is still mine, still silly, and still small.  However knowing stuff doesn't ever seem to keep me from being slightly crazy.  So, for the next little while, if I end up sounding stilted or contrived or self-conscious, please have the courtesy to look away -- just as you would do if you saw me at Wal-Mart at 11pm on a Tuesday night.

Sunday, July 17, 2011


Well, that's done then.

Its a remarkably quiet film, specially when you consider all the battles and screaming and destruction.  Everyone is dirty and unhappy which is fine cause Harry has to die to save the world.  I'm happy that Nevil Longbottom ended up killing Voldemort, we got to see all of Snape's memories, and I didn't have to watch Hermione pretend to "act." 

It was a well-done film and a fitting end to the series. 

Thursday, July 14, 2011

DOCTOR WHO -- Greatest Superhero EVER!!

To begin, the Doctor IS a superhero.  For reals.   
He matches up with all of the guidelines which are, loosely:
  •  Have a super power or be alien. 
Regeneration! Ta da!
  •  Have a dicey relationship with the laws of physics (as currently known/understood by human race.)

The TARDIS. Bigger on the inside.
  •  Have a really good origin story/traumatic childhood. (see: Time War)
Home, aka "The planet I blew up during the Time War"
  •  Possess an arch nemesis.

I would have added a Dalek photo here but Dalek fangirls are funnier.
  •  Have poor taste in clothing. 

Capes? Anyone? You? Oh, you already have a bow.
  •  Have the desire/ability to save people from dire situations
Saving the world from the Sycorax in his pyjamas -- just like every other superhero!
  •  AND, Have a strongly ingrained reluctance to kill
Unless it's one of these guys. Then it's ON!
So there. 

Now, why is the Doctor the Greatest Superhero EVER!!!?  It's because he's FUNNY!  Standard (i.e. made in America) superheros take themselves waaay too seriously. 
The spanx under the spandex is what makes us frown.
Apparently saving the world is some real serious business and there is nothing, NOTHING funny about me wearing my underpants on the outside. Nothing. Stop giggling.

Does this man look like he takes himself seriously?
The good Doctor, however, really doesn't walk around with a cop face on while planning to save the universe.  He uses the TARDIS like a regular person would -- to get babes.  The saving the world stuff just keeps coming up when he's on his way to show some fine lady and/or her friends a good time on Arcateen V 'cause chicks dig Butterfly People and writing bad poetry.  He carries a sonic screwdriver because it's more useful than blasters or other such single-purpose tools and it starts with the word "screw."  He's the last of the pompously-named Time Lords and he's just out to have a good time.

The Sexiest U-Boat Captain alive
So the Doctor is the greatest superhero EVER because he's willing to help everyone and is all about having a laugh on the way. (This officially makes him 73% cooler than Superman since good ol' Kal-El is pretty dull once you get over the x-ray vision party trick.)  And, in case you were wondering, of all the doctors who have ever been THE Doctor, Christopher Eccleson was the hottest.