Cinepub


Zombie Month: Big Tits Zombie 3D by Jamie

Well, it’s the day before Christmas eve though this will be posted on the day itself and I’m a little inebriated with… shall we say Christmas cheer? Ok, it’s booze but I have to be because I just watched ‘Big Tits Zombie 3D’ because nothing says Christmas like a Japanese film about Zombies and strippers. Seriously, name one thing that’s close to being as Christmassy as that? Yeah, I didn’t think so.

Anyway, due to my current condition and the fact that writing is becoming increasingly more difficult, I’ll make this quick. The basic story is that five strippers working in a Podunk little town in Japan discover a secret room linked to their dressing room which houses the Book of the Dead. One of them uses it to raise the living dead and before you know it, Zombie Apocalypse.

Of course being as this is Japanese, it can’t just be your normal, everyday Zombie Apocalypse. Nope, it’s the kind that includes Zombie Samurai, a tentacle beats and most disturbing of all (and trust me, you know it’s bad when there’s something more disturbing in a Japanese film then a tentacle beast) a zombie women with a hell vagina that shoots flames. Yeah. That’s something I’ve seen now. Thanks Big Tits Zombie…

Oh god, I need to drink more. Bear with me…. Right, where was I? Yeah, this film is pretty fucked up. The special effects are terrible though. CGI blood everywhere and the most hilarious effect ever done for someone being run over that I’ve ever seen (imagine a still photo of a person being flipped on it’s back as the car goes forward). Hell, you can even see the strings on the tentacle beast puppet. Still, there’s the odd bit of nudity… Weird nudity, like a scene where you just get a close up of tits with blood spraying all over them. So yeah, it’s kinda like bukkake with blood instead of cum. Again, thank you movie.

The thing is, this film would actually probably be bad enough to be worth a look if it wasn’t for the 3D. Unfortunately it’s the old style red/blue 3D and you have to take the glasses off and then put them back on for certain scenes. Your eyes just can’t adjust quickly enough to so many changes during such a short film and so it fails. I’ll give Big Tits Zombies 3D two pints out of five. Laterz.



Review: The Social Network by Jamie

Some small spoilers but I’ve tried to keep it relatively spoiler free, nothing that isn’t really obvious from watching the first third of the film or so.

Facebook has irrevocably changed the way human beings interact, either for the worse or the better. It’s hard to tell which. It ensures that we can stay in touch with old friends who it’d just be difficult to keep in touch with otherwise but then there’s always the odd report of a paedophile setting up a group so they can get pictures of kids. Whether true or not (and I tend to lean towards not because it’s my experience that the internet creates the ultimate herd mind, a mass organism that has all of it’s fight or flight instincts multiplied by billions compared to that which you’d experience in a single human being. If you don’t understand then just ask Tommy Lee Jones in Men In Black), these reports certainly help to bring into question just how good of a thing Facebook is. But rarely is the question asked How is Facebook? The reason that that question is rarely asked is because it’s poorly worded. A better question would be where did Facebook come from? And that just so happens to be the subject of this film ‘The Social Network’.

Now I remember when their was first talk of this film being made and everyone, including myself, were basically saying “A film about Facebook? That’s fucking retarded! Who the hell’s gonna see that?” It didn’t matter that David Fincher was directing or that Aaron Sorkin was writing. It just seemed like a film about a website was a really stupid idea. And on reflection it would be a really stupid idea if that website wasn’t Facebook. The reason that Facebook is the exception is, as I stated, it is a world changing thing but more importantly it’s the way in which the website came to be that is fascinating.

Still, even knowing that the movie was about the complicated relationships behind Facebook, I wasn’t completely sold. The trailer pissed me off a little. What with the whole choir version of Radio head’s “Creep” it just seemed so pretentious and so self-important for a film about the founding of a website. Still, I had thought the same thing about the trailer for ‘Frost/Nixon’ and that ended up being a film that I really loved. The proof I decided would be in the pudding and, as it turned out, what a fucking awesome pudding.

From the opening film where Mark Zuckerberg (Jessie Eisenberg) was having a war of words with his girlfriend to the films final resolution, I was fucking hooked. The story is twisty and turny, filled with betrayal and intrigue. It’s hard for me to even begin this review.

Ok, so the basic plot is Mark Zuckerberg breaks up with his girlfriend, hacks Harvard’s computer network and creates Facesmash, a website that allows people to compare girls at the university whilst blogging nasty things about his ex. The website goes viral and within a few hours, Zuckerberg has managed to crash the entire Harvard network. He is reprimanded by the school but his actions gain the attention of the Winklevoss twins (Arnie Hammer) and Divaya Narendra (Max Minghella) who approach him with an idea for a new social network, completely exclusive to Harvard, allowing friends to share photos and keep in touch and that kind of thing. Zuckerberg agrees to help them.

As he’s working on the site, however, he comes up with his own idea. It’s similar to their idea but greatly improved allowing for greater user participation and a wider range of features. He calls it ‘The Facebook’ and launches it with the financial aid of his friend Eduardo Saverin (Andrew Garfield) who becomes the manager of the business side of The Facebook. Eventually the website expands beyond the grounds of Harvard which attracts the attention of another internet pioneer, Sean Parker (Justin Timberlake) the creator of Napster who finds himself having fallen on hard times due to being sued by pretty much everyone in the music industry. It’s here when things really start to expand and soon everyone is rich.

Of course the Winklevoss twins and Narenda haven’t exactly been too pleased with all this as they feel that Zuckerberg basically just stole their idea. Finding no help from Harvard’s higher ups, they send a cease and desist letter and pretty much leave it at that as one of the twins is really reluctant to sue. That is until they find out Facebook has spread all the way to England. Then it’s litigation time.

Meanwhile Zuckberberg basically screws over Saverin who also decides to sue him and Zuckerberg suddenly finds himself fighing two cases.

It’s these trials that are basically the framework of the film with all the other stuff provided as flashbacks. It’s handled really well all though the first time the film left one trial only for the flashback to end in another I was a little confused though it didn’t take long to figure out what was going on. It’s a really interesting way for this film to play out especially if, like me, you haven’t read the book it was based on ‘The Accidental Billionaires’. You know that Zuckerberg is gonna screw over the twins and Narendra, at least from their point of view, and it’s fairly obvious how but you can’t figure out just how he’s going to screw over Eduardo who, to be honest, seems like the only real friend that Zuckerberg has due to his… somewhat abrasive personality.

So yes, it’s time to talk about Jesse Eisenberg’s portrayal of Mark Zuckerberg. Well, for years the standard joke has been that Eisenberg is basically the guy you get in your film if you can’t get Michael Cera but in ‘The Social Network’ he really shines. I honestly couldn’t see Michael Cera pulling this off. The way he portrays Zuckerberg as this arrogant, selfish, self-centered… Hell, basically sociopathic individual that for some reason you still feel something for is amazing.

Hell everyone’s amazing in this film. Andrew Garfield stands out as poor Eduardo who sticks with Zuckerberg through everything despite his personality and is ultimately discarded. In fact the scene when he is finally just screwed over by his best friends is one of the most heart-breaking things I’ve seen since maybe Toy Story 3. I didn’t cry this time but I think I was actually close.

Even Justin Timberlake surprised me as Parker, again someone who, like Zuckerberg, should be truly, truly unlikeable but there’s something about him that just you just can’t fully hate him. Oh, you can hate him more than Zuckerberg but still there’s something just kinda likeable beneath all of his doucehbaggery.

Fuck, everything in this film was great. The plot and the way it unfolded, the score by Trent Reznor, the way Eisenberg handled the quick, snappy dialogue, the fact that one guy is playing both twins and you would swear that, no, they must’ve just cast twin…. Everything. Go see this movei. Drop whatever it is you’re doing right now and go see it.

On top of everything else there is a personal investment in this story. We all use Facebook. That’s just the way life is now and to see it’s origins and to see how it spread and became this major force in our lives, well, it’s just incredible. See it. Five pints out of five. Laterz.



Review: The Social Network by Jamie

Some small spoilers but I’ve tried to keep it relatively spoiler free, nothing that isn’t really obvious from watching the first third of the film or so.

Facebook has irrevocably changed the way human beings interact, either for the worse or the better. It’s hard to tell which. It ensures that we can stay in touch with old friends who it’d just be difficult to keep in touch with otherwise but then there’s always the odd report of a paedophile setting up a group so they can get pictures of kids. Whether true or not (and I tend to lean towards not because it’s my experience that the internet creates the ultimate herd mind, a mass organism that has all of it’s fight or flight instincts multiplied by billions compared to that which you’d experience in a single human being. If you don’t understand then just ask Tommy Lee Jones in Men In Black), these reports certainly help to bring into question just how good of a thing Facebook is. But rarely is the question asked How is Facebook? The reason that that question is rarely asked is because it’s poorly worded. A better question would be where did Facebook come from? And that just so happens to be the subject of this film ‘The Social Network’.

Now I remember when their was first talk of this film being made and everyone, including myself, were basically saying “A film about Facebook? That’s fucking retarded! Who the hell’s gonna see that?” It didn’t matter that David Fincher was directing or that Aaron Sorkin was writing. It just seemed like a film about a website was a really stupid idea. And on reflection it would be a really stupid idea if that website wasn’t Facebook. The reason that Facebook is the exception is, as I stated, it is a world changing thing but more importantly it’s the way in which the website came to be that is fascinating.

Still, even knowing that the movie was about the complicated relationships behind Facebook, I wasn’t completely sold. The trailer pissed me off a little. What with the whole choir version of Radio head’s “Creep” it just seemed so pretentious and so self-important for a film about the founding of a website. Still, I had thought the same thing about the trailer for ‘Frost/Nixon’ and that ended up being a film that I really loved. The proof I decided would be in the pudding and, as it turned out, what a fucking awesome pudding.

From the opening film where Mark Zuckerberg (Jessie Eisenberg) was having a war of words with his girlfriend to the films final resolution, I was fucking hooked. The story is twisty and turny, filled with betrayal and intrigue. It’s hard for me to even begin this review.

Ok, so the basic plot is Mark Zuckerberg breaks up with his girlfriend, hacks Harvard’s computer network and creates Facesmash, a website that allows people to compare girls at the university whilst blogging nasty things about his ex. The website goes viral and within a few hours, Zuckerberg has managed to crash the entire Harvard network. He is reprimanded by the school but his actions gain the attention of the Winklevoss twins (Arnie Hammer) and Divaya Narendra (Max Minghella) who approach him with an idea for a new social network, completely exclusive to Harvard, allowing friends to share photos and keep in touch and that kind of thing. Zuckerberg agrees to help them.

As he’s working on the site, however, he comes up with his own idea. It’s similar to their idea but greatly improved allowing for greater user participation and a wider range of features. He calls it ‘The Facebook’ and launches it with the financial aid of his friend Eduardo Saverin (Andrew Garfield) who becomes the manager of the business side of The Facebook. Eventually the website expands beyond the grounds of Harvard which attracts the attention of another internet pioneer, Sean Parker (Justin Timberlake) the creator of Napster who finds himself having fallen on hard times due to being sued by pretty much everyone in the music industry. It’s here when things really start to expand and soon everyone is rich.

Of course the Winklevoss twins and Narenda haven’t exactly been too pleased with all this as they feel that Zuckerberg basically just stole their idea. Finding no help from Harvard’s higher ups, they send a cease and desist letter and pretty much leave it at that as one of the twins is really reluctant to sue. That is until they find out Facebook has spread all the way to England. Then it’s litigation time.

Meanwhile Zuckberberg basically screws over Saverin who also decides to sue him and Zuckerberg suddenly finds himself fighing two cases.

It’s these trials that are basically the framework of the film with all the other stuff provided as flashbacks. It’s handled really well all though the first time the film left one trial only for the flashback to end in another I was a little confused though it didn’t take long to figure out what was going on. It’s a really interesting way for this film to play out especially if, like me, you haven’t read the book it was based on ‘The Accidental Billionaires’. You know that Zuckerberg is gonna screw over the twins and Narendra, at least from their point of view, and it’s fairly obvious how but you can’t figure out just how he’s going to screw over Eduardo who, to be honest, seems like the only real friend that Zuckerberg has due to his… somewhat abrasive personality.

So yes, it’s time to talk about Jesse Eisenberg’s portrayal of Mark Zuckerberg. Well, for years the standard joke has been that Eisenberg is basically the guy you get in your film if you can’t get Michael Cera but in ‘The Social Network’ he really shines. I honestly couldn’t see Michael Cera pulling this off. The way he portrays Zuckerberg as this arrogant, selfish, self-centered… Hell, basically sociopathic individual that for some reason you still feel something for is amazing.

Hell everyone’s amazing in this film. Andrew Garfield stands out as poor Eduardo who sticks with Zuckerberg through everything despite his personality and is ultimately discarded. In fact the scene when he is finally just screwed over by his best friends is one of the most heart-breaking things I’ve seen since maybe Toy Story 3. I didn’t cry this time but I think I was actually close.

Even Justin Timberlake surprised me as Parker, again someone who, like Zuckerberg, should be truly, truly unlikeable but there’s something about him that just you just can’t fully hate him. Oh, you can hate him more than Zuckerberg but still there’s something just kinda likeable beneath all of his doucehbaggery.

Fuck, everything in this film was great. The plot and the way it unfolded, the score by Trent Reznor, the way Eisenberg handled the quick, snappy dialogue, the fact that one guy is playing both twins and you would swear that, no, they must’ve just cast twin…. Everything. Go see this movei. Drop whatever it is you’re doing right now and go see it.

On top of everything else there is a personal investment in this story. We all use Facebook. That’s just the way life is now and to see it’s origins and to see how it spread and became this major force in our lives, well, it’s just incredible. See it. Five pints out of five. Laterz.



Review: The Loved Ones by Jamie

It takes a lot for a film to disturb or scare me. One that did both those things in recent times was a little Australian horror film called ‘Wolf Creek’, released in 2005. It’s basically the story of what happens when a group of backpackers come across a really fucked up version of the villain character from ‘Rescuers Down Under’. I mean really fucked up. Like torture and kill people fucked up.

Yeah, that film certainly left an impression on me. It somehow managed to include scenes of people being tortured but I didn’t get that general feeling of pointlessness that I normally get when watching films which have been dubbed, for better or worse, as ‘Torture Porn’. There was just something going on beneath the terror that made me actually care and get scared. It was a genuinely good film.

So we come today to another little Australian horror film which I would certainly put in the exact same genre as ‘Wolf Creek’. I dunno what that genre would be called… ‘Good Torture Porn’ maybe? No, that has completely the wrong connotation. ‘More-ture Porn’ because there is more going on than in the typical torture porn film? No, that doesn’t seem right either. It doesn’t matter. The film for today is ‘The Loved Ones’.

Brent is an Australian high school student who killed his father in a car crash whilst trying to avoid a bloody figure in the road. He has a hard time dealing with the events of that day, understandable really, especially since his mother seems to blame him for her husband’ death, even if se doesn’t say it directly. Still he does find some comfort in his girlfriend Holly. Sexual comfort, that is. Plus she loves him or something. There’s also his somewhat comical sidekick Jamie who has a crush on Mia, goth daughter of a local policeman who’s dealing with some pretty deep issues of her own.

Then there’s Lola. L-O-L-A, Lola. Lo, Lo, Lo, Lo, LoLola… Sorry. That had to be done. Anyway, Lola seems to be a bit of a quiet girl, doesn’t have too many friends, that kind of girl. She approaches Brent by his locker and asks him to the school dance but he turns her down, saying he’s already going with Holly This is a decision he’ll probably end up regretting.

While Brent is what I’ll assume is the Outback, because it’s outside and in Australia, Brent is chloroformed and kidnapped. When he comes round, he’s tied up to chair inside Lola’s house, with decorations hung all over the place as though it were some kind of homemade school dance. Lola is present as is her father and a woman, who doesn’t seem particularly cognisant of what is going on, whom they call ‘Bright Eyes’. From here the torture begins.

Whilst all this is going on there’s a subplot running concurrent involving Jamie and Mia and their adventures at the high school dance which provides a little bit of humour to the otherwise very dark proceedings whilst also adding another layer to the main story through the problems Mia is dealing with.

And that’s pretty much all the plot I’m going to give away. Anything beyond this would probably be considered a spoiler. I’ll just say that FUCK! The torture in this film is brutal and when you come to realise just what it is they plan to do with Brent it just becomes more and more disturbing. The film also manages to just draw you in, the tension in one particular scene (all I’ll say is it involves a drill and a kettle) becoming so heightened that I kept on standing up and walking around the room, occasionally taking my eyes of the screen as it just kept building and building to almost unbearable levels. It was fucking awesome.

Despite this rampant torture, there is, like I said earlier, so much that sets this apart from your ‘Saw’ films or your ‘Hostel’ films. I couldn’t give a fuck about any of the characters in any of those films (except for Danny Glover in the first Saw because every time he plays a policeman, I like to think he’s still Murtaugh after something terrible has happened to Riggs) but in this film, and indeed in Wolf Creek, I do. I care about the people being tortured which just makes everything so much more visceral, tense and generally uncomfortable.

The performances are all solid particularly those of Lola (Robin McLeavy) and her Daddy (John Brumpton) who play of each other as a psychopathic, serial-killing and possibly incestuous duo with seemingly twisted glee. Brent ( Xavier Samuel) is also pretty great especially conveying his thoughts and feelings the way that he is forced to because, well, let’s just say that after a certain point he doesn’t have much to say.

Overall if you like sick, twisted horror but can’t stand bullshit like the ‘Saw’ series then ‘The Loved Ones’ is probably the film for you. If I have one criticism I have, it’s the ending which just kinda happens whilst leaving a few storylines a little too unresolved for my liking. Still, four pints out of five. Laterz.

What follows is a trailer which to my mind is actually quite spoilerey. Watch if you want!



Review: Buried by Jamie

Oh boy, this one’s going to be difficult because to do a decent plot synopsis, I feel that I’d have to give away far too much of the story… So, for a synopsis let’s just say that Ryan Reynolds plays Paul Conroy, a truck driver working in Iraq who awakens to find himself buried alive with nothing but (initially) a lighter, a knife, a pencil, his empty wallet and a mobile phone. Throughout the course of the film he uses the phone to contact various people, including the police in America, his family, the hostage takers themselves and people at a group set up to help people taken hostage in Iraq, in order to try and get him released from his predicament.

That’s pretty much the basic outline of the film and all I feel particularly comfortable telling you about the story without giving too much away. What will say is that this film is fucking awesome. It’s hard to believe that such a simple idea could produce such a tense and intriguing story but it does and it does it excellently. It’s the perfect antidote to ‘Devil’ if you had the misfortune to watch that as well. It’s incredible how a film about five people trapped in a box is so utterly and completely dull whilst this film about one man trapped in a box kept me on the edge of my seat.

Now, I’ll admit that this film probably isn’t for everybody. I heard a few people moaning and complaining that the film was crap but I have a feeling this are probably the small minority. Also they were laughing like fucking retarded hyenas during the film so I don’t think their opinions are exactly the ones you’d really want to trust anyway. Douchebags. If you‘re not that kind of person but instead you can actually sit there and allow yourself to be drawn into what is a fantastically engaging story then I‘m sure you‘ll enjoy it.

That’s not to say that the film isn’t without it’s problems, the main one being that I’m fairly sure an episode of ‘Mythbusters’ proved the basic premise of the film, that someone could be buried underground for any extended period of time, to essentially be highly, highly unlikely if not outright impossible. Still, maybe the writer didn’t see that episode.

The stand out performance in this film is, unsurprisingly, that of Ryan Reynolds. I didn’t realise just how good of an actor he actually is. His panic in this situation is palpable and yet it still occasionally tinted with the sense of humour that still keeps me hoping he’ll play Deadpool someday (and properly this time). It’s actually made me look forward to the Green Lantern film something I didn’t really care about that much before because, if I’m honest, I’m just not that big a fan of the character.

So in conclusion , if you’re not a fucking idiot, go and see this film. See it as soon as humanly possible. The last scene in particular left me shaking when I walked out of the cinema and only one film I know of has ever done that to me before and that was ‘The Dark Knight’. Four and a half pints out of five.



Review: Devil by Jamie

Spoilers Ahead!

I’ve been trying to write about this film for almost a week now. The reason being that I don’t want to come of as just another Shyamalan hater just because I didn’t like this film. Don’t get me wrong, I dislike the films of Mr. M. Night Shyamalan but I don’t want to seem like one of those people who are just jumping on the bandwagon without any particular reason and yet I’m sure writing a negative review of ‘Devil’ will attract exactly those kinds of accusations. Balls to it. I can’t help feeling the way that I do.

I had a small glimmer of hope for this film. Lately I’d come to regard Shyamalan a bit as I see George Lucas these days, as a man who can come up with really quite good ideas but when it comes to the execution of those ideas he just can’t quite pull it off. With ‘Devil’ the basic idea was that the idea for the story had come from Shyamalan but everything else such as the screenplay writing and directing at duties would be handled by other people. Perfect, I thought to myself, this is exactly the way that he should do things for the time being. Maybe watching other directors put his ideas on the screen would give him some pointers on how he could do it better himself.

Of course, now I think of it, similar thoughts were running through my head when I heard that he was directing ‘The Last Airbender’. Great, I thought to myself, this is exactly the that he should do things for the time being. Maybe focusing on directing rather than the story will enable him to perfect his craft. Well, I think we all know how that turned out.

So, yeah, I was willing to give Devil a chance. That was my mistake. The basic premise of the film is that there are five people with questionable backgrounds who are all trapped in a lift (elevator for my American readers) and they are slowly killed off one by one. The reason? Why, the Devil’s in the lift as well of course! Why? Well, apparently it’s just something he does from time to time for no discernable reason.

Meanwhile there’s a couple of cops and security guards on the outside watching them through the CCTV cameras in the lift and trying to find out who each person is because, whilst the people in the lift can hear them, they can‘t hear the people in the lift so they can‘t just tell them who they are. Their time may be better spent trying to focus on just getting the people the hell out of their because the efforts of the emergency services to do just that are pretty fucking poor. Like one guy with a saw. How about you get two guys with saws, cutting from both sides and meeting in the middle? Seriously. Whilst this piss poor rescue attempt is going on and the cops are running around trying to find out who each person is, more and more people are getting killed. Killed to death!

Oh, also one of the cops has a back story wherein his family wife and son were killed in a hit and run accident with the driver of the other vehicle leaving a note behind at the scene simply saying “I’m so sorry”. I wonder if that will play any part in this film later on? In the interest of full disclosure I didn’t wonder if that would play any part in the film later. I don’t know why. It was such an obvious twist looking back on it and this is an M. Night film so a twist should always be at least kinda expected. The only thing I can think is that I was so bored watching this film that I honestly didn’t want to think too deeply about it. Still, I feel stupid at not figuring out. On the other hand I did work out the other twist in the film pretty early on, that being who the Devil actually was so I guess I win at that. Go Team!

So yeah, that’s pretty much the plot. Some people are trapped in a lift. Other people aren’t. Sometimes the people in the lift die. The main problem with the film was just how insanely boring it was. Imagine watching five people trapped in a lift and occasionally sometimes watching other people watching five people trapped in a lift. It would be far more interesting than this film because at least that wouldn’t try to build up faux tension without any kind of pay off. Seriously, anytime it seems like something is about to happen in this film, the lights go out, the screen goes dark, you hear a few weird noises and bam! The lights go on and there’s a corpse! It’s like fucking someone right up until you’re close to the point of climaxing and then just stopping. What’s the fucking point?

To top it all off, there’s no sense of mystery to the film. The film’s advertising and even the title give away exactly what the plot is. There are five people trapped in a lift and one of them is the Devil. Well, thanks very much. Hell, you could tell who the Devil was from watching the trailer alone so the only thing you’re left with is the hope that there will be some interesting death scenes. I’m not talking about bullshit Saw/Hostel torture scenes but something. I mean, this is the motherfucking Devil we’re talking about. He should be able to pull something interesting off. But no, what we’re treated to is darkness and an increasing body count. Well, whoop-de-fuck. Maybe I’m jaded or desensitized to violence to such an extent that I need to see something but come on, who isn’t in this day and age?

it would have also been nice if maybe, just maybe there was an element that hinted that maybe it wasn’t the Devil, at least until the big reveal at the end. Maybe it was someone who was just going mad and had based their killing spree on old tales of what the Devil supposedly did but no. It’s pretty much shown that there’s no way that anyone in that lift could have pulled off the killings without being some ancient malevolent force so that’s lame also.

I suppose the acting wasn’t bad but it wasn’t particularly great either. I didn’t really care about any of the characters because they never really developed to any kind of stage where you could. Perhaps the oddest thing about the film is that the opening five minutes is just a weird shot flying through the city but upside down. It made me feel physically sick. Thanks movie.

So yeah at the end of the day, the film was just boring beyond belief and whilst the film was apparently just M. Night’s idea I have a hard time believing that was his only input. It just felt too much like a film that he would have made otherwise. I don’t know the exact level of his involvement but I think it was probably a little more than advertised. I still feel the need to give Shyamalan one last chance, something I feel every time I’m burned by him, because I do think there’s still a good film maker in there somewhere but I’m starting to think that it may have died, suffocated beneath the layers of whatever the hell he has become. Still, I do love ‘The Happening’. Sure it fails on every level of being a good film but it is fucking hilarious. Sadly Devil is not The Happening and so it gets one pint out of five. Satan deserved so much better. Laterz.



Documental: Exit Through The Gift Shop by Jamie

Spoilers ahead though honestly I don’t think they’ll really hurt your enjoyment of the film.

I’m not the most artistic person in the world. I can just about manage to draw half-human, half-animal people in as long as they’re pretty much just standing there. Oh, and drawing hands always gives me trouble as well. I don’t know much of the art world either. I can look at a painting and say whether or not I like it. Art interpretation is a bit of a mystery to me. This may be because my preferred art form, cinema, has become a huge bloated corporate corpse that’s quite far removed from the art world that birthed it. Sure, there are still the independent film makers still trying to cling onto their artistic integrity and even some mainstream film makers you could still claim are quite artistic but for the most part Hollywood is largely concerned with the dollar. Hell, even if you are an artistic, visionary director, there’s a good chance that your work will be fucked around with by the studio unless you already have quite a bit of clout. Just look at what happened to Fincher on Alien 3.

Still there is one genre of film-making at least were the substance of the story seems to be more important than the profitability of the project and that is documentary, a genre which I am particularly fond of. Sometimes these documentaries are about art such as the one I’m looking at today… Wow, that was a tortuous segue. Anyway, my point is this is a review of ‘Exit Through The Gift Shop’, the documentary touted as being about Banksy and, whilst he does feature in it, it isn’t really about him when you get down to it. Rather it’s about the man, Thierry Guetta, who set out to make a documentary about street artists such as Banksy and what happened during this process.

Now, I should point out that there’s been some controversy over whether or not the film is a hoax or not. All I’ll say on this subject is that I’ve seen a fair few documentaries in my time and if this is a hoax then it’s a fucking food one. Everyone interviewed comes off completely natural and unscripted so I personally think it’s real but hey, I could be wrong. It’s happened before.

Anyway, Thierry Guetta is a French man living in California, America. He owns a clothing shop and he has one obsession, his camera. He takes it everywhere and films everything so much so that it‘s occasionally gotten him in trouble during the odd celebrity spotting. On a visit to Paris he meets up with a cousin of his who is part of the burgeoning Street Art movement. My understanding of Street Art is that it’s the inevitable evolution of graffiti, taking it from simple tagging to actually creating murals and pieces of visual theatre and such. That’s what I think it is anyway. Like I said, not particularly arty. Guetta’s cousin, named Invader, makes mosaics of characters from the retro video game ‘Space Invaders’ and places them throughout Paris and, eventually, other cities throughout the world. Guetta joins and films Invader as he spreads his art throughout the Parisian streets.

This ignites a passion in Guetta and he seeks out other street artists in order to film them at work. Finally a chance encounter leads him to Banksy and the idea of creating a documentary is discussed seriously. Good thing too because along his travels Guetta has collected literally thousands and thousands of hours of street artists at work without really considering what he was going to do with it.

Something else begins to happen as he films these people as well. He begins to help them pasting up their giant posters, helping them paint, holding ladders and keeping an eye out for the fuzz. He breaks one of those old documentarian rules, never get involved. I’ll admit, that might only apply to nature documentaries but still I stand by it. The point is that as Guetta gets more involved with the art, the more he begins to become obsessed with it. Soon he’s going out by himself and creating his own pieces. Whilst this is going on, Street Art continues to grow and starts becoming quite big commercially. Inspired by a show that Banksy has put on, Guetta decides he wants to do one as well giving himself the pseudonym Mr Brainwash.

He advertises his show heavily, apparently putting more work into the publicity for the show than he does actually doing the work into it. Still, he hires a massive team, gives them the designs and mass production begins on thousands of pieces of art that Mr Brainwash plans to sell at his show. Finally the show comes around, much money is made and Mr Brainwash is pleased. Some of the Street Artists he had befriended and who had helped him aren’t though. They see his overnight success as something corrupting, something he didn’t work hard to achieve by himself like they had.

And in the end I think that’s what the title of the film means. The film starts of with a genuine look at the rise of the Street Artists and an examination of what they do and why they do it and it ends with a show full of art, mass produced like cheap souvenirs in a museum gift shop, which seems to have been made simply because the ‘artist’ saw that it was making other people money and he wanted that himself. In fact the museum gift shop analogy is fairly apt. You enter the building because your interested in the paintings and such housed inside. You can study them, interpret them, find out the history of them and at the end of the day you can pick yourself up a cheap, meaningless imitation. That’s what I think anyway. Like I said, I’m not much for art interpretation.

Over all, this is a fucking fantastic documentary that I highly recommend whether you’re interested in the subject matter or not. Luckily I do because, although I may not be much into the art, I do like the Street Art stuff, Banksy in particular, but I honestly think that the story is interesting and engaging enough that you’d be able to enjoy it whether you had an interest in it or not even if this review doesn’t really get that across. Sorry but I wrote this a week after watching the film and didn’t have time to watch it again. Still, watch it and I promise you’ll enjoy it. Five pints out of Five. Laterz.



Review: Piranha 3D (2010) by Jamie

Light Spoilers Ahead

Well, we’ve finally come to the end of the Piranhathon and I have to say, thank fuck for that. I am getting pretty damn sick of fucking piranha at this point and I’ve only actually seen one good film out of four so far. Will Piranha 3D be the shining saviour that can make everything ok again?

Well holy fucking shitballs, yes! Yes it can! Now I was a little sceptical going in to Piranha 3D simply because of that 3D bit at the end there. I’ve never really had 3D work properly for me. I don’t know if it’s been were I’ve sat in the cinema or if because I have to wear normal glasses beneath the 3D pair or what but for some reason, it’s always left me feeling a little bit off and with hideously aching eyes, especially after Toy Story 3 which just seemed to give me hideous eye strain for about a week afterwards.

But Piranha 3D worked perfectly! And what’s more, Alexandre Aja seems to get what 3D is. It’s a gimmick and it should be treated as such. James Cameron can bitch and moan about how 3D is the future of cinema as long as you don’t do what Piranha 3D does but he’s wrong. 3D is a gimmick, Piranha 3D treated it as such and it was the first 3D film I’ve enjoyed because of the 3D rather than in spite of it. Avatar just looked like World of Warcraft to me.

Anyway, I suppose I shouldn’t really give too much of the plot away since it’s still a fairly new release but I’m going to issue a spoiler alert right now anyway. Spoiler alert: Piranha eat some folk. That’s about it, honestly. There is a lot of build up where you sort of learn a few things about the main characters, although now that I think about it you don’t really learn that much. Most of the build-up is actually spent on jokes about Spring Break, booze, boobs and porn with the occasional moment where it’s made clear that our main male teen character (Steven R. McQueen) likes female teen character (Jessica Szhor) but none of it really matters. It’s all building up to the slaughter.

Ok, I’m not gonna bother with plot anymore, though like I said, that’s pretty much it. Let’s talk about everything else that makes this movie awesome. First off, it has nudity. A ridiculous amount of nudity. In fact if I would be surprised if it wasn’t the nudity that got this film an 18 in the UK and an R in the US rather than the violence and gore. There’s a scene of Kelly Brook and Riley Steele swimming naked underwater for what seemed like ten minutes. It was a bit confusing because the natural way to end that scene is with a vicious piranha attack but they just surfaced and were fine. Still, nudity.

Piranha 3D also is chock full of blood, gore and severed CGI penises. Alright, it’s not full of severed CGI penises, there’s just one but its pretty amusing. Still, the piranha attacks and the people related death that occur as a result of them trying to escape the piranha are over the top, creative, uber-bloody and just plain fun to watch if you like that kind of thing. I won’t say anything about any of the death in specific I’ll just say that they should easily satisfy a gore-hound. Piranha 3D also manages to keep in with the tradition of the original Piranha by having the odd single death here and there but really going for the massive attack, that is piranha attacking huge groups of people en-masse. It makes for a fantastic scene filled with churning water, frantic bodies and floating body parts. Also that water turns redder than you’ve ever seen it turn red in your life. It’s fucking awesome.

Finally a word about the cameos in this film. First off you’ve got a couple of porn stars. Always nice to see and they actually have some of the best deaths in the entire film. But the two greatest cameos since Zombieland belong to Richard Dreyfuss and Christopher Lloyd. Richard Dreyfuss basically reprises his role of Matt Hooper from Jaws in the opening scene of this film, sitting on his boat, drinking Amity Beer and singing “Show Me The Way To Go Home”. Then the piranha come. It’s awesome. Then we have Christopher Lloyd playing what is essentially an ichthyologist version of Doc Brown from Back To The Future. Hell they even throw in a little time travel joke with regard as to when it would have been a good time to stop the piranha. Sadly though, he does not say “Great Scott!!!” which would have stood out like a sore thumb but would have been entirely appropriate in this movie.

I’m sorry I haven’t gone into as great detail with this film as I did with ‘Mega Piranha’ yesterday (a fucking 2500 word essay on Mega Piranha!!!) but I think this is definetly one you’ll want to just check out. It’s big, it’s loud, it’s politically incorrect and it’s proud. This film knows exactly what it is and I’d say it does for the B-Movie what The Expendables does for the action movie. See it. See it on the big screen in 3D. You won’t regret it. Four and a half pints out of five. Laterz



Review: Mega Piranha (2010) by Jamie

Well we finally come to the cream of the crap of this little Piranhathon. If you’re looking at a film and the title is an animal name with the word ‘Mega’ in front of it then there’s a good chance you’ve got a pretty shitty B-Movie on your hands. There’s also a good chance that you may be dealing with a release from the internet’s favourite film studio, The Asylum. I hope you put on appropriate protection before picking up that DVD case. The film we’re looking at today, Mega Piranha, also debuted on the SyFy channel so we’re looking at something so terrible that even they wanted to get in on it. Now, I know I probably should have saved his for my new video review series that’s coming soon ‘Cinepub Presents SyFy Presents’ but it just fits in to the whole piranha theme I’ve got going on at the minute not to include it here what with the fact that it’s got piranha in it.

Ok, I warn you now that as I write this I’m starting to feel like I’ve eaten some really bad fish. I’m beginning to suspect I’ve overdosed on piranha based entertainment. If I start to just ramble on about giant piranha crashing into buildings and inexplicably exploding then understand that I’ve pretty much broken down and reality is starting to melt… No, wait. That actually happened in this film. Fucking hell.

Well, the film opens with an American Ambassador to Venezuela on a boat with the Venezuelan Foreign Minister and a bunch of bikini clad/topless women. They’re discussing political things when all of a sudden their boat is attacked by a school of uber-aggressive piranha or Mega Piranha if you will. The scene is really quite ridiculous with a bunch of piss-poor CGI fish jumping onto the boat and eating the party aboard except for one guy who, perhaps realising he’s in an Asylum movie, just jumps overboard into the sweet release of the waiting piscine jaws. Also the water is pretty poorly coloured red digitally. Really? Would it have been that hard to have just splashed some red dye into the water or something? Awful.

The American government is somewhat perturbed by this little sudden disappearance f an ambassador in a foreign land and, fearing a terrorist plot, they decide to send in Jason Fitch, one of their top special forces agents to investigate. Fitch is played by Paul Logan and there’s only one way to adequately explain his performance to you. You know how everyone says that action stars generally aren’t the best actors? Well, to some degree this is true but people tend to over-exaggerate their criticism of action stars acting capabilities. Paul Logan is what you get when everyone’s criticism of action stars is not only true but is actually holding back a bit, perhaps to spare the feelings of those action stars. What I’m basically getting at is that Paul Logan is to action films what Tommy Wiseau is to acting, writing and directing drama films. He’s apparently got a degree in bio-chemistry which I guess makes him a bit like Dolph Lungren if Dolph Lungren were an even worse actor.

So Fitch heads to South America in order to find out if this was terrorists, a boating accident or maybe some kind of Mega Sloth or Mega Tapir. The one thing he never expected, however, would be the one thing he would find… Mega Piranha! As he’s leaving the airport having met the Venezuelan Colonel Diaz, his liaison in the country and the eventual villain of the piece, Fitch is pulled aside by busty red-headed scientist Sarah Monroe because apparently it’s very easy to get this close to secret agents on missions when they are being escorted by the Venezuelan military. She informs him that this was no terrorist attack. It was a strain of incredibly deadly piranha she created in her lab for some reason. More on that later. Anyway, Monroe is played by Tiffany who I understand was a musician of some kind in the 80s. All I know is that while thoroughly researching this film I came across some pictures of her from Playboy on the internet and let’s just hope she gets ‘em out for the lads at some point during this film because if I’m watching films about killer piranha I expect two things, piranha attacks and breasts.

Anyway, Diaz doesn’t believe the story about the Mega Piranha and, infuriated at Fitch’s insistence that that may be what caused the attack, he calls of the entire investigation. Fitch goes to the lab to try and find out more about these killer fish. There he meets Monroe’s colleagues, Dr. Higgins a tubby man who speaks like Adrien Brody in ‘Predators’ making everything he says hilarious (despite which the man playing him, Jude Gerard Prest, does deserve quite a bit of respect for being a man with a long and successful career behind him having filmed on every continent except Antarctica. Seriously, look him up on Wikipedia. It’s really quite impressive.) and Gordon who’s just kinda there looking up data occasionally. They explain that they had been developing hardier animals so that the people of Venezuela would have a more steady food supply. During this experimentation they accidentally released a strain of mutant piranha into the local river system. The piranha are growing at an increasingly rapid rate and show no sign of stopping. Also they’ve developed an assortment of extra organs, can absorb nutrients through the skin (which begs the question ‘Why do they need to eat?’) and have virtually impenetrable. Hold on a moment. You were creating animals for the people of Venezuela to eat so why the fuck did you create these Mega Piranha? What possible benefit could indestructible, ravenous killer fish bring to the impoverished people of Venezuela? I guess that’s why I’m not a movie scientist. I just can’t see the bigger picture.

Fitch goes out to gather evidence of the existence of these Mega Piranha and kills one in order to bring it back to Diaz. He’s attacked a bit but as soon as he stabs a fish, the other piranha ignore him to cannibalize their fallen compatriot. Take note of that because it will be important later or it would be if the ending made any sense. More on that later. Anyway, whilst Fitch is diving to capture the piranha, the movie actually teaches me a couple of things I had never known before. For one, the Amazon is incredibly clear which I guess makes the enlarged sonar organ those river dolphins evolved for navigating murky waters pretty unnecessary. Gutted you endangered pink pricks. Secondly the Amazon has quite a few coral reefs which came as quite a shock to me. I had always considered coral reefs something that were exclusive to marine environments but nope, apparently they occur in rivers as well. Good for them.

Diaz reacts to the piranha the way that any rational human being would. He ignores the scientists thoughts on how to kill them and takes to the air with his squadron of helicopters and shoots the shit out of the river and the natural dam that was keeping them pinned in. Of course the piranha somehow survive the weapons being fired randomly at them from the sky and escape into the river system at large. Diaz decides that the best course of action is to arrest the scientists for creating the piranha and releasing them into the wild, also deciding that the whole thing is part of a secret CIA plot to overthrow the Venezuelan government.

Now, I know that Diaz is meant to be the villain of the piece, impeding the mission of our valiant heroes but he’s kinda got a point. Like I said earlier, why the fuck did those scientists create those Mega Piranha if not to intentionally release them into Venezuela to create panic and unrest during which the CIA could easily replace their system of government with one more to their liking? The more I think about it, the more it’s the only possible solution to the whole mystery behind the creation of the Mega Piranha. The only error the scientists made was making their Piranha too damn Mega, making them a threat to not just Venezuela but the whole world.

Anyway, Dr. Higgins, Fitch and Gordon manage to escape from the military which leads to one of the most blatant and hilarious examples of repeated footage and dialogue I have ever seen. Let’s watch, won’t we?

Jesus fucking Christ. There is no way to describe the ridiculous nature of what we have just observed. Just take it in and cherish it, never let the feeling you had watching it go. You will die a happier person. Anyway, because the two stand there repeating the same movement over and over for a little too long they are apprehended. Still Fitch manages to track them down and, during a Mega Piranha attack on a random Venezuelan city, let’s call it Venezuela City (I don‘t know if Venezuela City even actually exists but it‘s a fine name for a city from Venezuela), he manages to free them and they make their escape. Well, except for Dr. Higgins. He gets gobbled up by a Mega Piranha. Alas poor Higgins, you bizarre voice and habit of doing the same thing over and over will be sorely missed.

I should take a moment to address something very important about the nature of the Mega Piranha’s attacks. They have reached the size of about a car at this point and they attack by simply launching themselves out of the water into buildings and exploding. An explosion which, I should say, they manage to survive. They can be seen quite happily flapping their tails as they sit stuck in buildings. So what the hell causes the Mega Piranha to explode upon impact? Are they attacking exclusively nitro-glycerine plants? Is Venezuela City known for it’s nitro-glycerine production? Or have the mutant piranha simply evolved the ability to extrude napalm through their skin? What the fuck where those scientists doing in that lab? How are giant piranha who attack buildings and explode on impact a help to anyone? I know I’m repeating myself but seriously!

A massive car chase ensues through South America during which time both chaser and chasee’s cars randomly change into different models at random times. The science team manage to ascertain that the Piranha are heading for the river mouth and, being freshwater fish, they’ll be trapped there and vulnerable to attack. Fitch gets on the phone to his boss and a plan is set up where a passing battle cruiser will bomb the river mouth, exterminating the Mega Exploding Piranha for ever more.

Of course the plan fails, the Mega Piranha can in fact survive in sea water and they take down the battle cruiser for good measure as they head out to ocean. Yes, piranha destroy a battle cruiser. It’s… Well, it’s just fucking ridiculous. Admittedly they are now the size of really big things but still… fucking ridiculous. So they all figure out that the Mega Piranha are heading up to Florida and so the race is on to stop them before they kill any goddamn Americans! Yes, the Venezuelan military are putting everything they can into stopping the rogue scientists whilst the Piranha eat everything around them but the good ol’ US of A’s military is fully behind protecting their citizens. Well, sort of. Their contingency plan if they can’t stop the piranha in the ocean is to nuke the fuck out of Florida so there’s that.

Of course they can’t stop the Mega Piranha in the water. They launch a ten kiloton nuke at the fishy bastards and yet they survive. Fitch’s boss is all ready to bomb Florida into a sheet of glass when Fitch remembers the way those piranha cannibalized the one he stabbed earlier. If only he could get them all to bleed, they’d surely eat each other to death. So the plan is to drop a bunch of divers amongst the school and have them shoot at their eyes. Once actually in the water and the eye plan falls, Monroe informs them that some piranha don’t have regular blood vessels in their eyes and they should try shooting their gills instead. Well, thanks scientist lady! That’s information that would have really been helpful earlier before half the team had been eaten by giant ravenous Mega Piranha! Then when that doesn’t work either she suggests shooting bombs into their mouths which should cause massive haemorrhaging in their stomachs! Well, thanks again scientist lady! You didn’t think that the suggestion of shooting them in the largest target area in their face, the one they are most likely to be swimming towards you wide open was important to share back up on the surface before the operation began? I’m starting to think you created these piranha because you just get turned on by the thought of people being eaten by giant fish! What the fuck is wrong with you lady?!?

Anyway, Diaz turns up in a helicopter and Fitch manages to get the piranha to eat him, helicopter and all using a transmitter which emit’s the sounds they make when they find prey. Fitch manages to blow up the Mega Piranha that had eaten Diaz by shooting a missile still attached to the helicopter. The rest of the piranha go into a feeding frenzy and set upon the corpse. All the divers get out and celebrate because apparently blowing up on fish and getting the others to eats its corpse constitutes winning somehow. Seriously, they kill one fish and everyone just starts celebrating… WHAT THE FUCK?!? How does that make any sense? What about the hundred or so other giant piranha which are still going to attack Florida once they’ve finished with their dead comrade? It’s the equivalent of solving a bank heist by arresting one guy who was tangentially involved, brushing your hands together, saying ‘Case closed’ and walking off into the sunset. It doesn’t work! And Tiffany didn’t get ‘em out for the lads! This film is a massive waste of time from every conceivable angle!

That being said it is a hell of a lot more fun than Piranha 2 or the 90s remake of the original Piranha. It’s just so fucking stupid, it is one of those bad films that it’s genuinely fun to watch maybe even more fun than Mega Shark Vs Giant Octopus. The special effects are laughable, the acting is terrible, the same footage is repeated over and over again and the ending makes no sense whatsoever. It’s hilarious to watch. So all in all I’ll have to give it two and a half stars out of five for simply pushing the boundaries of the ridiculous. Will Piranha 3D fare any better? Come back tomorrow to find out. Laterz.



Review: Vampires Suck by Jamie

Who in their right mind would choose to review films? It’s a question I found myself asking whilst once again deciding that I should torture myself by sitting through another film from those comedic black holes Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer. Yes, they’re back with a brand new “parody” film! I know, just like me your nipples are tingling with anticipation. No wait, that’s not anticipation. That’s revulsion. Thanks movie, you’ve annoyed my nipples.

So what the hell is there to say about this parody of the Twilight Saga? Well perhaps the most important thing to note is the title ‘Vampires Suck’. Why isn’t this film called Vampire Movie? I can only assume that the ____ Movie brand has been so damaged that they had no choice but to name it something different. Does that mean that the word movie itself is so tainted that we have to stop using it? Fair play I suppose because according to my Google Chrome spell checker the word movie doesn’t exist anyway.

So what of the plot? Well, if you’ve seen the first two Twilight films then you’ve seen this movie. Just imagine those films greatly condensed into about an hour and fifteen minutes but with the actual plot points replaced with bad jokes about Twilight or bad pop culture references. It’s pretty much the standard Friedberg/Seltzer fare. And it is, of course, pretty much all deeply, deeply unfunny. It did get a few chuckles out of me, generally when Diedrich Bader was on screen playing the role of the main characters father. He was kinda funny and made it at least… Well, not watchable but you could potentially aim your eyes at the screen and they wouldn’t leak blood for the entirety.

I don’t know what more I can really write about this without just repeating things from my ‘Meet The Spartans’ review or my ‘Disaster Movie’ review. It’s all pretty much the same awful, awful shit. There is a quick reference to Psycho which, due to it being one of my favourite films of all time, I can never ever forgive Friedberg and Seltzer for because now whenever I watch Psycho as small part of my brain is going to remember this film and for that they must both be punished. Besides that there’s also references to Facebook, the Kardashians, Lady Gaga and much more empty pointless references to things that are popular at the moment which will only cause it to age badly and make it even worse as time passes if that’s even possible.

I’m done with this film and these two cock squirts. The only reason I really watch these films is to write reviews like this were I get to use words like cock squirts. So let’s just sum up and hope once again that their career is over just like we did after Meet The Spartans and Disaster Movie. So what’s the final verdict? Well, it’s about as funny as genocide but still manages to be a little bit better than Disaster Movie which was as funny as an AIDS-ridden puppy being gang-raped… during a genocide. A half a pint out of five. Don’t watch it, don’t look at the posters or trailers for it. If you do happen to come into contact with it in any form just drink until you forget it. If you were watching Vampires Suck and someone stabbed you in the eyes, they’d be doing you a massive favour and you should at least by them a drink or something. Laterz.




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