Tuesday, September 6, 2011




Seeing that I could only fit five films into my marathon for Sunday, due to the theater's packed schedule, I opted to go see Rise of the Planet of the Apes as a pre-marathon buffer on Saturday. Being a fan of the prior Planet of the Apes films, yes even Burton's unusual take, I was hoping that this one would be a worthy addition to the series. The decision to go completely CGI with the apes worried me at first, seeing that I loved the practical effects and monkey masks of the older films, but after seeing WETA's beautifully rendered Caesar and Andy Serkis' outstanding and sympathetic portrayal of the ape that would lead a revolution, my fears were laid to rest. The film was excellent and surprisingly emotional, weaving many of the original Planet of the Apes lore into the new modern take of a world soon to be dominated by talking apes. Rise of the Planet of the Apes is a great introduction to what I hope will be a new series of chapters in the ongoing ape saga.



Don't Be Afraid of the Dark was my first film of the day and what a way to start things off. This film is oozing with atmosphere and foreboding moments that make your skin crawl. The film is a remake of a 1973 made for TV movie of the same name that starred Kim Darby. I've seen the original movie before, but it's been so long that I only remember bits and pieces of it. As for the remake, I thought it was beyond creepy. The basic story follows a couple, Alex and Kim, that are renovating an old mansion where mysterious things have happened in the past. The original owner of the mansion and his son, have both disappeared, displayed in shockingly gruesome detail in the opening moments of the film. In this opening segment, we learn that the house is home to a nasty group of creatures that feed on the teeth of children. It's demented as hell and things only get creepier when we learn that Alex's daughter has recently been sent to live with them at the mansion. You just know what's going to happen next, but the build up to the thrilling conclusion of the film is just fantastic and the ending will throw you for a loop. Creepy as all hell. I enjoyed this one a lot and felt that it was one hell of a great and disturbing fairy tale.


Colombiana is one hell of a good revenge flick which feels like a sequel of sorts to Luc Besson's The Professional. The film begins by showing us a young girl named Cataleya as she witnesses her mother and father gunned down by the Colombian mob in Bogota. Fleeing for her life, she makes it safely to the United States where she reunites with her uncle who reluctantly begins training her to be an assassin in order to murder her parents' killer. The film is very sleek and crafted with a great sense of urgency, while the set pieces are brilliantly laid out. Zoe Saldana plays the deadly assassin Cataleya and she does it rather convincingly. There's never really a moment where you question if she can really pull off these killer moves or expert kills and that really helps the overall quality of the film. There's also a great many morale dilemmas that crop up in the storyline, provided by Cataleya's uncle who is stuck between honoring his brother's dying wish to keep Cataleya safe and allowing Cataleya herself to fulfill her lifelong pursuit of vengeance. The film was a wild ride and entertaining as hell.

(STATUS REPORT - Huge Bucket of Popcorn For Lunch... Think I'm Going to Shit Butter!)


Oh Conan... you Barbarian. This was a pretty fun flick that doesn't really capture the magic of the first Conan film, but it does provide some entertaining moments and gives us a welcomed introduction to Jason Momoa's portrayal of the bad ass barbarian who lives, loves, and slays. The film doesn't hold back on the gore and overabundant violence that a barbarian movie entails, and there are enough diverse and interesting characters to keep the story moving along at a steady pace. What I really appreciated the most from the film was the beautiful landscapes and outlandish locations that sprawl across this two hour epic. The filmmakers did an excellent job in creating the realm of Hyboria and making it a living breathing entity of its own. There's also a great deal of fun to be had with this film as the characters play well off of each other, especially between Conan and Tamara played by Momoa and Rachel Nichols. In the end, I came out of the film not blown away, but wholly satisfied by the fun and bloody barbarian romp through Hyboria.


Saddle up you Potter fans, cause it's Harry and friends last cinema fling. Well I wouldn't say that I'm a huge Potterhead, but I really dig this series of films. The fact that the main cast basically grew up around these movies is astounding and it adds to the powerful nature that the collection of films give off. If you've watched the previous films in the series, then you know what this last installment is all about. Voldemort is an evil son of a bitch and Harry has to kill him. Of course there's tons of stuff in between, but the real meat and potatoes of this story is the final battle between Harry Potter and Lord Voldemort. I have to say that I feel that they wrapped things up rather nicely, and having not read the books, I felt wholly satisfied with the conclusion of the film. There's a certain kind of magic, not withstanding the literal magic on screen, that these series of films have and I'm happy to say that the special quality of film-making that we've come to expect from the Potter movies is represented in full in the finale of these marvelous collection of films.

(STATUS REPORT - I Can't Feel My Ass!)


In my opinion, I saved the best for last, because the remake of Fright Night was a pure blast. Borrowing heavily from its 80's counterpart, the re-imagined Fright Night has a wonderful and playful nature to it that had my sides splitting as well as my blood pumping. Hell they even threw in Chris Sarandon, the original Jerry Dandrige, for a surprising cameo that I literally didn't see coming. The film has a great cast of characters and everyone pulls their weight throughout the story. I especially dug Anton Yelchin's take on Charley Brewster. He's not the horror obsessed teenager that he was in the original, but a nerdy kid trying to break free from his undesirable past in order to rise up the ranks within the high school clicks. I found the back story between himself and "Evil" Ed to be rather interesting, as it helps to flesh out each of their characters while at the same time separating itself from the original film. Also, Colin Farrell did a remarkable job as the new Jerry Dandrige. He had that cool yet dangerous appearance that is essential to the vampire's character. Last but definetly not least, David Tennant was amazing as Peter Vincent the Vampire Slayer. The original Peter Vincent, played by the legendary Roddy McDowall, is a classic, but David Tennant's version had a debauchery to it that was just so much damn fun. His performance was inspirational and added a great deal of depth to why he was considered a vampire killer and his obsession with the occult. All in all, this film was a great ending to a mind boggling night of cinema. Hopefully I'll get a chance to do another movie marathon, because it really was an experience. Till next time, happy watching.


  1. I felt the exact opposite about the new CONAN movie. I went in with low expectations and came out no different. I haven't seen any of the others, unfortunately.

  2. I also went into Conan with low expectations and knew that it wasn't going to hold a candle to the original, but I ended up enjoying it for the most part. There were moments when the film seemed disjointed and random, but overall I had a good time with the movie. Sadly the film just didn't seem as lived in as the world in the original.