Despicable Me

June 30, 2013


Internet Movie Database
CinemaSins         Movie Reviews

An archvillain ends up adopting three orphan girls to succeed in one of his schemes. You know where that’s gonna go.

For a couple of years, I’ve been seeing these cute little guys all over the internets:


And sure, they’re adorable (see? they’re making a HEART…) but whatevs, the internet is full of squee.

Then I visited Ottersis in June, at the same time that Spider Jerusalem was there. And the night before I arrived, they had watched this and were raving about how funny and cute it was.

So when SJ and I got home, I emailed Craftygirl and said, want to come over for junk food and we’ll watch this? And we did.

And everyone was right, it is adorable. Evil archvillian with tons of cute little minions doing his bidding (the little yellow guys.) ends up

The animation is wonderful (and, amazingly enough, is NOT Disney or Pixar!) , the story is funny albeit kinda predictable, the characters are good, and the jokes are actually funny.

This one was a winner! I can’t wait to show it to Mr. Otter, he’ll like it too.

The Outlaw Josey Wales

June 22, 2013


Internet Movie Database          Movie Reviews

From the novel Gone to Texas by Forrest Carter

It’s a Clint Eastwood western, nuf sed. But a pretty good one. Northern raiders kill his family during the Civil War, so of course he joins the Southern raiders; after the war, he’s on the run, but finally finds a girl and a family, and they stop the bad guys who are still chasing him.

One of the spate of reformist westerns made in the 70s, meant to show more depth of character than the old-style fare- Native Americans are allowed to have personalities and reasonable needs/wishes/motivations; girls are allowed to kick ass; bad guys are good and good guys are bad.

I saw this several times when it came to commercial TV in the 80s, and haven’t watched it in at least 15 years; glad to see it holds up pretty well.

But Chief Dan George really does steal the show.

Elvira’s Haunted Hills

June 19, 2013


Internet Movie Database          Movie Reviews

Elvira (whom I remember from when she got her start in LA as a horror movie hostess in the early 1980s) cowrote and stars in this heavy-handed and silly  parody of the Cannon horror movies of the 1960s.

Two performers end up at the haunted castle, and hijinks and sexual innuendos abound.

Richard O’Brien is also in the cast, the only other actor anyone has ever heard of.

Mildly amusing.

Man of Steel

June 19, 2013


Internet Movie Database
CinemaSins        Movie Reviews

Yet another reboot of the Superman story.

This one got great reviews on the interwebs, and the trailers were really good, so Spider Jerusalem and I hied us on down to our local emporium du movies last night to see it on the REALLY BIG screen.

I’m going to say a bunch of stuff about it, and I guess some of it could be considered to be SPOILERS. I don’t think I’m giving away anything that makes any difference to a person’s reaction to this movie, but just in case, to keep you all from yelling at me…there may be some



Now, I have to confess, I’m not much of a Superman fan. This was pretty well written, and well made, and the special effects were indeed awesome… but I had serious problems with it:

  1. They have tried, in many ways, to make him more appealing/accessible to more people, but basically, no matter how much Kryptonite you make up and throw at him, he can do anything and can’t be hurt. So where’s the drama? why should we care about him? this movie was no exception. And the way they tried to give us some suspense about whether he’s going to live or die, and whether or not he will actually overcome the bad guys (guess what happens in both instances? right.) is that being a Krypton native raised in Earth’s atmosphere gives him his powers, so being put in Krypton’s atmo takes them away. For both him and the bad guys, who are, of course, from Krypton. Not buying it.
  2. Their world is blowing apart yet they spend the time and resources to send the bad guys away, only to have their prison break down three days later, in which three days there’s time to send little Kal-El off to his new world, and people can do a whole bunch of stuff, then suddenly the world goes blooey? if the core were actually exploding, there’d be no life on the surface for a LONG time before it went blooey.
  3. Two invulnerable guys battling each other and destroying the city around them. Cool special effects. Spent WAY too long on the same thing over and over: one of them hits/attacks the other, the other or both of them go careening into buildings, buildings fall down, general consternation from all the stupid people watching this who are not RUNNING AWAY. Why didn’t Superman grab the bad guy and go fight in, oh, say, Antarctica where there are NO PEOPLE OR BUILDINGS? Or outer space, for that matter.
  4. People were way too prone to simply jam his flash drive in any convenient opening without knowing what was on it. Stupid, stupid, stupid.
  5. How exactly did he shave?
  6. But mostly…like many other extremely good looking guys who play this role, the new one (whose name I have not even bothered to look up) is pretty but has no personality. He can grin ruefully, or screw his face up in a semblance of sadness, but there is no genuine emotion there. And if he isn’t feeling it, neither am I. Christopher Reeve still wins on this score.

So yes. Pretty, not bad writing, lots of explodo. But overall? hasn’t won me over to the DC Way.

Oh, and I am SO PISSED OFF. After a personal vow NEVER to see another Kevin Costner movie on the big screen, a vow I have kept since the awfulness that was Waterworld in 1995…I inadvertantly broke it, he plays Clark Kent’s father. Spider Jerusalem says it doesn’t count, since it wasn’t a ‘Kevin Costner’ movie… but I feel soiled.

Warm Bodies

June 9, 2013


Internet Movie Database          Movie Reviews

Not a ‘Rom-Com’…but rather a ‘Zom-Com’.

The story is told by the zombie boy, who has a rather vivid internal life, even if he’s lost all his memories from before he became a zombie. Evidently when zombies eat brains, they get some memories from the dead person…until that doesn’t work any more and they become a ‘bony’, an animated skeleton who is faster and way more vicious than the zombies.

So the boy kills, then eats the brains of, the heroine’s boyfriend, and falls for her. He rescues her and is coming back to life as he and she spend more time together.

Just in case it wasn’t obvious, her name is Julie, and all he can remember of his previous name is that it started with an R. Spider Jerusalem pointed this out.

And all turns out well. Even for the zombies.

This had moments, but there were plot holes that you could drive a Mack truck through, and neither SJ nor I found the concept that zombie-ness can be reversed to be particularly believable.

International House

June 9, 2013


Internet Movie Database          Movie Reviews

A bunch of oddballs from different countries are quarantined in a hotel in China. Shenanigans!

This is a W.C. Fields movie, and is extremely silly. Oh, that’s redundant…

The frame story, about all these people coming to this hotel to see a new invention and getting stuck there, is just a vehicle for a lot of comedy routines (like George Burns and Gracie Allen, who are the hotel doctor and nurse) and chase scenes.

Short, silly fun.