Cinepub


Review: The Big Wedding by Jamie

Oh boy. Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy. Weddings! They’re a joyous occasion that bring people together to celebrate the love of two individuals! Or they’re a ridiculously outdated concept that go against the natural instincts of the human animal! Whichever way you slice it, I think we can all agree that weddings are a thing that exist. And because of their existence, Hollywood makes movies out of them. The wedding comedy is a cinema mainstay that will probably around as long as the ridiculous tradition itself. It makes sense. Weddings are big, meticulously planned affairs where strangers are forced to mingle and there’s a great deal of alcohol. Any number of things can go wrong. It’s perfect comedy fodder.

It’s because of the familiarity of the setting and an almost inborn understanding of the premise that so many wedding comedies get produced. These are movies that will play to the largest possible audience because everyone understands them. Also they can be produced relatively cheaply. This combination of cheap production and large audience draw means that these kinds of films are always guaranteed to make some kind of money. They don’t even need to be big box office smashes. They just need to exist.

And so we come to 2013s entry in the big wedding comedy genre titled, erm, “The Big Wedding”. Has it got stars? It’s got Robert De Niro! Susan Sarandon! Diane Keaton! Robin Williams is there also! And you know what? Everyone in this film does a perfectly fine job. No one is terrible, nobody sucks. Everybody does just fine. It’s just that when you get a big cast together, they really should have something great to work with. The Big Wedding leave them with nothing.

Well, not entirely nothing. You’re average wedding comedy is generally not excessively crude. It’s the kind of thing a woman, her grown up daughter and the grandmother can all enjoy together. The Big Wedding decides not to go that route. Within the first twenty minutes or so, Robert De Niro has nearly eaten out Susan Sarandon and called his ex-wife (Keaton) a cunt. Am I shocked by this kind of humour? No, of course not but you know who hates the word cunt? Particularly when it‘s being used to refer to a woman? My mum. And that’s the problem with this movie.

Who is the target audience? You can’t have sophomoric, sub-frat boy jokes based on curse words and cunnilingus and expect an older crowd that would be attracted by the casting of De Niro, Keating and Sarandon in a wedding comedy and expect them to enjoy it. You can’t have a wedding comedy and expect a bunch of young guys who might be more inclined to laugh at your crude humour to show up. This movie does not know what it wants to be who or it wants to appeal to and therefore it ends up appealing to nobody. It’s like an adult version of the Smurfs movie. No, I don’t mean it contains Smurf porn but in The Smurfs they made a movie about tiny, blue cartoon characters but included a subplot involving an ad-exec who’s not doing great at a job, has a pregnant wife and he’s not sure if he wants to actually have a baby or not. You know, the kinds of things kids love!

So yes, just who this movie is aimed at is a massive problem but then so is everything else. It’s the same old tired plot line we’ve seen a thousand times before from exactly these kinds of movies but with a thin layer of crude comedy painted on top to make it seem freh. There are two characters pretending to be married, parents disapproving of the groom, a girl who doesn’t get along with her father, a boy trying to lose his virginity. Everything is telegraphed and you know exactly from the opening few scenes just where this movie is going to go.

In conclusion, it’s like I said nobody is terrible in this movie but no one is exactly acting their socks off. It’s pretty clear that this is a pay check for everyone involved. I’ll admit that I chuckled here and there but that’s about it. I saw this at a pretty full screening and I can’t really think of any times when everyone laughed out loud. In fact, it was kind of weird just how quiet the audience remained throughout. There was definitely a bad atmosphere projected from the crowd toward the movie and it did end up feeling weirdly uncomfortable. I will say that I kind of enjoyed Topher Grace’s performance the most but that’s because he was basically playing a thirty year old version of Eric Foreman, his character from That 70s Show and I used to love that show growing up. Oh, and I did enjoy some of the humour about Catholicism but I’m a sucker for jokes about religion so take that with a grain of salt. Overall there’s just not that much to recommend though. One pint out of five. Laterz. And yeah, I know I didn’t do a synopsis. Do you really care what it’s about. If you do then just watch the trailer below and you have my pity.

Poster



Review: The Expendables 2 by Jamie

 

BANG!!! BOOM!!! FURTHER EXPLOSION NOISE FOLLOWED OR PRECEDED BY A CHEESY ONE LINER!!! Yes, I don’t think I’m giving away too much when I put forth exactly what’s expected of the sequel to The Expendables nor am I really entering spoiler territory when I say that, yes, the film has explosions, gunfights, gratuitous violence, call backs to the stars previous films and veins that bulge in a way that truly, truly disgusts me. Yes, it’s exactly what you expect, yet another throw back to the 80s when action heroes were real men, quick on the draw and even quicker with a quip and my sweet fucking God, it is awesome.

To write a synopsis of the “plot” would be an insult to the words synopsis and plot. The story is so threadbare that you couldn’t use it to make a sweater for a fly. Stallone good, Van Damme bad. There. Honestly though, the lack of a plot is fine with me. As long as I get to see some ass kickery and men who are old enough to really know better doing stupid, awesome things. More men who are old enough to know better join the cast in the form of the previously mentioned Jean-Claude Van Damme and Chuck Norris. Hell, why not add an actor just to satisfy an Internet joke that’s almost as old as the main stars of this film? And no, Norris can’t act. Hell, I’m a better actor and my experience only includes playing a Roman Emperor in a school play when I was 9 and playing a pretty much non-speaking gangster when I was 15. Arnie and Bruce Willis return with expanded roles and they really, really seem like they’re having a good time.

Now there is perhaps one problem I have with this film and that’s that the violence seemed as though it had perhaps been toned down a little. Yes, there were still some pretty sweet deaths and sprays of blood but it didn’t seem anything like the chaos of the last film. On the other hand there’s also a lot less time spent watching Stallone running like the man 4 years away from 70 that he is so maybe it’s a fair trade.

So that’s about all for the review because, honestly, you already know if you’re the type of person who is going to see this movie so this is really more a reassurance than a review. Yes, everything you want is there. Go, watch it and hope that they get Kurt Russell for number three. Laterz.



Zombie Month: Wicked Little Things by Jamie

Spoilers ahead.

Children are terrifying. This is a simple fact. They are here for one purpose and that is to replace us. Hell, maybe if people stopped having children, we’d all suddenly become immortal. But I guess we’ll never know because there are selfish bastards out there who just have to have their sweet little angels running around and making noise in cinemas. Seriously, don’t take your kids to the cinema if they’re not age appropriate for the film. All you’re doing is pissing everyone else off. Get a damn babysitter.

Our ancestors recognised the threat that children presented and did everything in their power to stop them by making them do horrible, horrible jobs that would kill or mutilate them. Things like chimney sweeping or fixing incredibly dangerous factory machinery or, as is the case with this film, make them work in mines. Unfortunately some bleeding hearts passed child labour laws and so children were free to pursue their tireless quest for world domination.

So yes, this film opens with a scene of a bunch of darling little children being forced to do incredibly dangerous work in a mine. One child is forced to set some TNT and before you know it, the whole mine has collapsed, trapping the innocent little moppets and killing them right dead… or are they?

The film cuts to present day and Karen Tunney has just inherited her dead fathers family home up in the mountains and so she moves there with her two daughters Sarah and Emma with views to fix it up and sell it. It isn’t long before weird shit starts to go down. Weird shit like having their door coated in blood by their neighbour, Mr Hanks and Emma being drawn to the site of the old mine by mysterious voices. She claims to have met a new friend there by the name of Mary. Meanwhile the children from the mine emerge and begin to kill people with their pick axes and shovels which is admittedly pretty cool.

Through the course of the film, it is revealed that the children are related to the Tunneys and Mr. Hanks and will not harm their blood relatives unless really riled up. This doesn’t help Karen who, of course, isn’t a blood relative though Mary, who is a Tunney herself, tells Emma that she won’t hurt Karen though she can’t make the same promise for the other children. The fact that they won‘t attack blood relatives is also the reason that Mr. Hanks goes around smearing his own blood on peoples doors. He also sacrifices pigs to them in an effort to sate their terrible undead hunger.

The children are ultimately after William Carlton, the last surviving heir of the Carlton family who once owned the mine that all the children died in. Modern day Carlton is currently doing everything in his power to buy up all the land and kick everyone off of his property which just conveniently enough means that he’s in the area at the time. So the film culminates with Carlton, Hanks and the Tunneys all holed up in a barn together. Hanks and the Tunneys stand by and let the children have Carlton and Emma informs them that the children say that they won’t harm anyone anymore. The Tunneys leave the mountain but they don’t sell the house. It is then revealed that the children are ‘living’ there. Really? They still have to wander the Earth as the living dead? That’s not a particularly happy ending. You’d think they’d finally get to rest or something now there business is finished. Is nothing from ‘Casper’ accurate?

That aside, the film was actually pretty enjoyable. It’s a fairly neat little play on the dead seeking their revenge on the living thing and kids are genuinely quite scary. Hell, that’s what Japanese horror and their American remakes have been relying on for a while. Seeing as the film was released in 2006, I’m sure the whole Japanese kid-based horror thing was some kind of influence on it.

Still, despite being enjoyable, there is a certain sense that it’s something you’ve seen before numerous times. It’s always weird when I come across a film that seems a little original and completely unoriginal at the same time but that’s the best way I can sum up this film. There are also a few moments where it gets really, really slow. Scenes of characters just wandering through the woods for what seems like an entirely too long period of time. I’m sure it’s supposed to add the feeling of people being lost but it gets kinda old, kinda fast, especially when they’re always in the same three or four locations. Anyway, I’ll give it three pints out of five. Laterz.




%d bloggers like this: