Spiders 3D (2013) [review]

With a title such as this film has, I was expecting very little, which is just as well. The story, if there is such a thing involved here; is one of spiders who have been in outer space find their way to Earth, soon to be realised by humans that these creatures have something which is not good for any living creature already living here.

I do not think that the makers of the film were trying to be smart or deep with what they created here, there may be the slightest (very slight) situation of politicians and scientist arguing over how the situation should be dealt with when it comes to the public, almost having a dig at how we may perceive some of our politicians. But this is a brainless horror, sci-fi, and thriller. One which is not trying to tax our brains and we merely watch the characters trying to survive the attack of multiple spiders which seem to grow bigger in earth’s atmosphere… of course.

This film was probably promoted on the 3D aspect rather than anything else we have here. The writing, directing, acting, special effects are nowhere near top notch and after a short while we expect very little from the film. Not long into the film, your eyes will glaze over with what is happening.

This is a very generic film which doesn’t do much other than take up an hour and a half of your time. If you are looking for something to watch and pay very little attention to, this is a film which barely gets your attention and you will not notice or care that you’ve missed some supposedly big plot point, which means very little in what is nothing more than big spiders attacking Earth. I don’t think the audience could even feel relieved when the film is over, as we were probably never really paying attention in the first place. It is a film that, if you’re with a group of friends, it will be on in the background while you chat about whatever is going on in your life.

It is certainly not worth paying to see, it is something which, if it happens to be on TV while flicking through the channels, maybe leave it on if you want some background noise while you do other things. The talent involved in the making of this film probably took part in this as they needed to pay their bills and are probably ashamed to have this on their credits of film.

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Marie Antoinette (2006) [review]

When it comes to historical dramas I’m usually a little cautious, as I wonder how close to the truth a film will be… could be. But with this film, any political or world history we witness in this are the big well known moments, especially with what was happening with France, England and America at that moment in time. All of which feels very minimal in this story.

Focusing mainly on the relationship with Marie Antoinette (Kristen Dunst) Louis XVI (Jason Schwartzman) and many of the French royal family and those who served them. Placing pressure on Marie at a young age and her place in the family; the responsibility she has when it comes to the French and Austrian relationship. I feel this film was misunderstood when it came out in 2006. Maybe historians were hoping for something beyond the relationship between the royal family. More than we see at least. The general audience not sure how to approach such a film, some maybe not knowing the period in history and feeling unable to watch this with any way of understanding the importance of where it fits in, where the world was at that time in which this was set.

But this film does not try to outsmart the audience with facts and figures of every single event which happened… it focuses on the drama of a woman who is thrown into a situation which she did not ask for, at a young age with the pressures of those who supposedly knew better. Marie trying to bring the two families together, pushed by her mother threw letters while her husband Louis finds interest in other things such as his fascination with locks.

This is a much better film than it is given credit for and I feel that it is one which has aged well… the attraction of no longer being a new film has given it time to breath and be something telling of a women who was perceived one way, while actually being something else in her private moments of a royal figure; In a time when such people were expected to be more than the everyday person.

This is one of those films which sink in a little more with each viewing, if you are unsure on first seeing this, take a chance and give it a second or third look; this is such a situation where we do not need to watch something once in a quick and undetected way. Sofia Coppola’s style is one which I’ve come to find to be one which people love or… come close to hating. For me, the tone and atmosphere is something of a slower telling of a story, a deeper look at the subject matter than may be expected, something which I’ve always liked about her films.

Ultraviolet (2006) [review]

There are those films which, when they’re release, you see all the trailers, the posters and everything else that goes into promoting. And the only thing about the film you remember is the promotion… if anything at all. For me this is one of those films.

I was recently flicking through the TV channels looking to watch a film I had never seen before and came across this one. The title seemed familiar and remembered Milla Jovovich from a couple of other films. So, I sat down to check this out, knowing nothing about the story, therefore had no expectations. This didn’t work in the film’s favour. The story is so simple and familiar that all through the film I was wondering and realising where I’d seen it done much better in other films and TV series. The dialog is so… once again, simple and stupid that you wonder how somebody didn’t point it out to the director/writer.

There are situations which you wonder how stupid the makers of this film thought the audience were. When the lead character is supposed to be in a moment of there being no escape, we can clearly see that there is no real danger and she is so much smarter than those she is coming up against, that we don’t care or wonder how if she or anybody will survive.

The emotional pull is something which is laid on so thickly to the point that we don’t feel anything for the good guys or the reason they’re coming up against the villains. The film is nothing more than a company having too much money and throwing it at the first person to offer them any piece of… rubbish.

This is a film aimed at younger teens in the hope they feel they’re watching something aimed at a more mature audience. It tries to look tougher while still keeping it in a safe and worm place where nobody will feel they’ve seen too much violence, blood or gore. Sadly this falls flat on its backside while patting itself on the back for doing a good job.

It really doesn’t care if you enjoyed it, as long as you watch, and if you were foolish enough to watch this at the cinema or buy it on… whatever format you may buy this, they got your money for something which wasn’t worth whatever you paid. In fact, I would recommend that if you are able to watch this for free, don’t waste your time with this; there are much better films to watch.

Rumble Fish (1983) [review]

If you are a fan of the original S.E. Hinton novel and have never seen this film, you may be a little weary about checking this out. But this is one of those rare occasions where, if you are like me, will find this almost as good as the book. Obviously those of us who read the book will have our own version in our heads, but this is so well done that there is very little we can fault about the film… if you do, you are probably looking for something, anything which falls out of line with the version you have from reading the story.

Francis Ford Coppola co-writing the script with S.E. Hinton and directing, gave this a feeling which pulls you in, makes you care for the characters which are involved in the small town, which could be anywhere, where the people are so much like those we meet in our own lives. The young characters, as they try to find their place in the world, some wanting to be like others, some not sure how they fit in, some don’t even try to be the so called norm.

This is a story of character who knows each other out of circumstance rather than choice, finding themselves in each other’s lives due going to school together; finding themselves coming into contact the law or generally there being too few people in a small town. Then there are those who are looking at certain people merely on reputation and don’t really know what lies beneath. This comes across the lives of those who want more, want less, never truly knowing what is going on, but try to make some sense of it all.

This is an hour and a half of a story which hits you more than you may expect, check it out along with the S.E. Hinton novel, both are worthy of your time. If you are in your twenties or older, you may feel that the story is not aimed at you, as it mainly focuses on the younger characters of the story. But, it not only connects with the people of that age, but those older. If you think life is all worked out as you get older, this reminds us that we find different parts of our lives just as complicated… and not everything is as easy as we would imagine it to be. The story comments on how the many characters have their own problems and how they deal with them… some better than others.

The Fog (1980) [review]

This is one of many John Carpenter’s great films, one which depends on suspense rather than blood and gore, which is something I’ve always liked about the film, causing us to care about the situation and the people involved. Not only for the people who live in the town and those passing through, but we understand those who are seeking revenge… which may seem over thinking this film, but those characters taking out their vengeance on the town are not merely there to kill, they’re unhappy with what happened to them a hundred years previously.

The ghosts of this story returning a century after they were murdered for not only their physical disease, but the gold they had. The town built on a lie of who the people thought they were and how the town came to be. The atmosphere to this film is a grand feeling, slowly building the tension, making us care for all that is happening, there are multiple people here who we find ourselves watching, find out where the people fit in, in what seems a small town which seems to be falling apart on one night, while they were supposed to be celebrating a hundred years of the town existence on the cost of California.

There are enough characters here to find ourselves picking who we like, enjoy the personalities of whoever takes our fancy. This is one of the great films which John Carpenter and Debra Hill were co-writers, in which they took us on a journey where we’re fully pulled into the film. This may seem tame by today’s standards, partly due to the fact of the blood and gore… or the lack of it and the speed in which the story is told, but that is something which I still enjoy. Causing us to get to know what is happening, letting us enjoy the moments in which we see the characters, wanting to know how, when and where this is and where it’s going.

This is an hour and a half of pleasure which I still enjoy watching today. John Carpenter’s score is another excellent part of this film, something which adds to the atmosphere, of the tension and suspense. Many years after its release, this is a film which is more than worth your time and you will enjoy all the elements which you find here. With a brilliant cast who play their parts perfectly. There is a joy to this which is almost playful in certain scenes… it is not a horror which needs to be serious every single moment.

Romeo Is Bleeding (1993) [review]

This is one of those films I feel has been neglected over the years, forgotten by many people. There is a great feel to this of a thriller, of a cop Jack Grimaldi (Gary Oldman) who is as he says himself, is always making the wrong choices, and leading him into situations which we would all like to avoid. It is almost as if he enjoys the misery which he creates for himself, involving himself with people who seem to see his greed for money over making the right decisions.

We watch him again and again make take the wrong path, all along;  we want him to avoid what we know will not turn out well, but at the same time, we want to see how far this will all go. Mona Demarkov (Lena Olin) is a great villain in that she is smarter than most of the people she comes into contact with, she is more than able to get people to do what she wants, avoiding people who want her dead. She manipulates so many into keeping certain people from knowing where she is.

Natalie Grimaldi (Annabella Sciorra), Jack’s wife, is tired and fed up of living a life which seems to be going nowhere while having nothing much to show for herself, taking pictures of a life lived which she thought would get better rather than worse. Sheri (Juliette Lewis) is the perfect love interest, the other woman in Jack’s life, who, we never really understand why she stays for as long as she does and we wonder what it is she loves so much about Jack.

This is a great drama which assumes the audience is smart and can keep an eye on all the characters and where they fit in… Not to say that it is story of great intelligence, but it does not feel the need to spell everything out for those watching. The only problem I have with this, is a small one, which is the accent, or rather the actors ability to give us a good version of what it is supposed to be… we’ve seen these actors do much better in other films… maybe this can be blamed on the director, maybe he wanted to make sure that we all knew where these characters were from.

The energy of this film will keep you on the edge of your seat, you will want to see the characters get what you think they deserve.

Thirst (2015) [review]

This lacks anything which makes us care about either the characters or the situation they find themselves. It feels as if it has all been done in much more interesting ways, and the characters are those we’ve seen many times before with much more to offer. It almost feels as if they’re the kind of people who think they are tougher, smarter, and deeper than they actually are. We see them deal with the monster which doesn’t feel that threatening. The way in which the characters try to deal with it feel nothing more than a bland and boring run of the mill story, all of which is very predictable and we see who is next in line to be taken by the alien.

We see the characters coming up with plans on how to kill the monster and we feel nothing for what appears to be just another step in trying to build the tension. Unfortunately this never seems to build, as the writers seem to be fumbling to find an interesting way to create a situation of dealing with the situation, the alien seems indestructible.

Those who are supposed to be in charge of this group are just as hopeless and unprepared as those they are looking after. This is a film of a creature that looks to be nothing more than an alien vampire whom we don’t fear; we don’t care if it picks off any of the humans. We watch it go through the motions of sucking the blood out of those we’re supposed to care about. All of which seems tired and unoriginal to the point we wonder if there is any point of this film existing.

There is nothing which will stand out in what tries to be a horror out in the middle of nowhere, where nobody can be reached as the equipment is not working properly… no surprise there.

The monster looks like it could have been a little, actually, a lot better designed as it looks and feels like a over grown toy which somehow takes many beatings and still keeps going with no real explanation… knowing very little about the monster does not work for this film. I don’t know if some back story would have worked or not. It gets to a point where we just don’t care. It’s a monster which seems to have no real motivation… Other than just being hungry.