Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Ninja Movie Of the Month May'13


Hoooooooe doggie have I got a ninja foot to face flick for you Booniacs and Buckleheads this month. First the closest I can come to a ridiculously cheesy and awesome opening... this film had me at "Hello". And by hello I mean the film equivalent, the first 5 minutes. Which contains, horrible theme music that is strangely awesome (featuring lines like - Ninja fight, show honour, ninja die), and Ninjas in training. Many ninjas doing ninja things like digging holes to hide in and scaling walls. I mean in all honesty, all the many NMOTM entries here at B&B, this one had to have the most Ninja filled credits. Then the film continues...

So there is a super kung fu guy in town. He does things like save villagers from douches, and well, just busies himself being an all around good guy. Using his powers for good. Meanwhile, there is an evil "Ninja" of equal skill on a mission of revenge, hunting down those he deems responsible for a great misdeed.

Yup. So a typical, and cool, plot. What makes this movie sooooooo VERY worthy of this here review is the Ninja action. The Ninjas actual do Ninja things. Smoke bombs, ninja traps, assassinations. And how is the fighting you ask? Damn impressive. The opening major fight sequence has our Hero battling a bunch of punks at a festival. The highlight being an insane stunt work of kungfuery where he battles on stilts for three-four minutes. I mean, its not too often I am in awe of a scene. But stilts... and back flips on stilts... gold!

Um, guys, I really have to go... 
And the hits keep right on rolling. First the plot is simple and unpolluted so you don't have any WTF moments to worry about. The humour is actually well times, and on occasion translates well. The acting is decent. The stunt work is nuts. Another great scene of Ninja ness is the confrontation between the two leads. How they go trap for trap, move for move. Even a cool part where the Ninja takes out the light because in the darkness he has the advantage... seeee! Gold!

The violence is defs fun and wonderfully over the top at times.

I really have nothing negative to say about this film. One of my fav Ninja flicks ever now, and on the list of coolest classic kung fu. If you are a chop-sockey fan and have yet to scope this flick out - make time. I mean not that you wouldn't after my glowing recommendation. :)

The fights are all well designed, and lengthy... no bullshit cop out here. Though at times the humour is a little misplaced. But I guess they figured it would help wash down all that blood shed... well damn it... I like my violence straight no-chaser!

Movie scale 3 out of 5 stars
Ninja scale 4 out of 5 stars.

Just want to say I am stoked for the new K-Reeves flick - Man from Tai-chi.
How sic does that look! Man they really just don't make them like this any more ...

Follow me are send your thoughts my way @Tallwhitefox
My Occasional film rants @BoonBuckles

And I'm out this piece yo! But I'm walking, cause I'm outta smoke pellets...

-CB Boonsweet.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

To boldly go - where they kinda sorta went before...

STAR TREK (2013)

I grew up on Star Trek. Now before you go thinking I was running around with felt points glued to the top of my ears... No... I am not a life long trekkie. I simply mean it was on, and available and often watched in my household. Prepare yourself for a Boony life-bit: I grew up in a small home with a smaller TV and only two channels... and one of them was french. Soooooo Trek was a welcome distraction. And well, now you might kind of understand my deep love of film... and giant TVs. Moving on, I did follow Trek through the years. There is part of me that loves sic-fi and it hard to argue Treks lasting effect, and scope, within the realm.

So a few years back JJ "I put on my pants one leg at a time like everyone else, but when I get my pants on I make gold record- wait, I mean Billion Dollar films yo!" Abrams, remade the beloved franchise from the beginning. And wow, did he ever. I mean the first ten minutes of the film are straight up on par with the greatest openings in film history. The rest of the film delivered. Did it ever. Turning legions of people that denounced trek for years into fans. The casting was great - Chris Pine as Captain Kirk. Zachary Quinto - as the loveable emotionless Spock, Zoe Saldana - as the very hot communication expert, Uhura.

Now they all return to burn up the screen in another awesome sic-fi adventure.

Or do they? (dramatic pause)

The plot goes like this. Kirk is still headstrong and follows his gut, Spock is still a goody two shoes, and well Uhura is still hot. So A guy decides he dislikes the federation and starts blowing up stuff trying to lay the ground work for a war. Kirk goes after him. Along the way we will have to see if Kirk can learn control, humility, and if Spock can embrace his human side ...

And thats it. All you need. Cause spoilers are for sun dried milk (Ya my slang is tight!) All the classic stuff you could want is here... Explosions. Exploding control panels. Exploding ships. Bodies hurled into space. Exploding explosions. Big ships with laser guns. Bigger ships with bigger guns. Klingons. Space sex. Oh did I mention Alice Eve is in this? Ya. Space sex.

Anyway, lets get into this. First, trek at its core has always been the debate between the burden of the entitled and those not so. The lines between helpful society and over bearing war force, and of course the bromance between Spock and Kirk. Let me address the D-bags saying the supporting characters didn't get enough time in this one... seriously? Have you ever... ever watched an episode of the show? Kirk. Spock. McCoy. And well, once every 5-10 episodes someone else got involved in a lead role. The side players get more time here than they had in the last film. Sulu gets a chair moment, Chekov has a slightly more than last time role, Scotty is all over this bitch, and ok Uhura really doesn't do much ore than mean Mug Spock. Still, I was satisfied. The bromance was prime. Lots of debating about the "Do not interfere with undeveloped species" Directive. Debating the needs of the many out weighing the needs of the few... all gold.

Spock, baby. I Um, don't think a human can, um, do it like that..

And the action is awesome. I mean just jaw droppingly good. The opening Volcano scene is just impressive... But.

Ya there's a but.

It just doesn't connect with the audience as much as the first entry. First the villain (brilliantly played by Benedict Cumberbatch) is amazing and yet, lacking just the smallest something. Like a third dimension? You'll understand when you see it. The action is amazing, but in the spaces between it really doesn't expand on the characters as much as I expected. It's more just time used to explain the next crazy set up for more exploding things. Most of the characterization takes place in the midst of the action and well, it's a little hard to feel saddy things while my man parts are being overloaded with adrena-juice (that, that was a fun sentence lol). I think I would have been happy with the slow burn of the first. Letting the film build to a final 30 minutes of action, but the action is good. And they know it. So they have no shame using it as popcorn munching eye candy filler. And well, I really didn't mind that much.

Alice Eve... um why did she and Kirk not get a moment? Big issue there. Even a "we're gunna die" type moment. Nothing. Luckily both actors are so damn attractive and charismatic that we get the connection anyway, but still... what the F.

I'm sorry. Were you expecting alien "Parts"? 

Yes I am aware my picture quotes are more hormone filled than usual. It's summer. And, dammit If I make it through this review without a "I'd explore that garden of Eve" joke... it will be a miracle...

To anyone that is complaining or has heard the complaining about the ties to the original film... (deep sigh) Shaddup. Listen. We here at Boonsweet & Bucklesworth did not do spoilers (with the exception of the CRAP! segment of course, for your own good) because at the end of the day you need to be able to see a film without prior knowledge of key plot if you so chose. You. Your opinion is the one that matters, and that should be unpolluted. I loved the twists. As a man familiar with the original, they really played on that knowledge. I mean Trekkies... what do you want? Them to remake a film word for word with beloved pastness.


But sometimes it does seem thats what these damn super Fan B-boys want. Well, sorry, thats just silly. You're silly.

Movie Scale 3.5 out 5 stars
Sci-fi scale 4 out of 5 stars.

Its fun. Its big. Its cool. And sexy. And well, its just... My issues were minor. I really did enjoy this. Not to the level of the previous, and well, I think the first (however slight) crack in JJ's invincibility (and yes it will still make a ton of cash as it should). If they ever do get around to a 3rd film, I have the suspicion JJ will be nowhere near it... perhaps he will be in galaxy... far, far, away... had to :)

-Boonsweet is of to explore strange new short shorts, and boldly go where only 10-24 men have been before...


Follow my shizzie @tallwhitefox or my occasional film ranting @BoonsBuckles

Wednesday, May 8, 2013


BADASS (2012)

Well folks, Cinco De Mayo has come and gone, and I deemed it necessary to review a movie with a Latino edge to it.  Lo and behold, I stumbled across Badass, starring Danny "I'm In Damn Near Everything Out There" Trejo.  Rocking a mean beard that reminded me of Sid Haig circa 'Devil's Rejects', and a bad ass belt pouch, he's cleaning up the mean streets in style.  Let's dive in and see what we're in for.

This is the story of Frank Vega, a simple Mexican-American who just wanted to serve his country in the Vietnam War.  Unfortunately, a bullet to the leg ended ended his time there early.  That was the first in a run of bad luck.  Upon his return to America, he learns his girlfriend has moved on and started a family, his application to the town police academy is rejected, and he gets turned down repeatedly by companies he looks to work for.  He winds up working a hot dog stand until present day.... 

Things take a brief turn upwards when he stands up to a couple of skinheads picking on an old man on a bus, thoroughly kicking their asses when they didn't stop pushing him.  The scuffle gets recorded and posted online, making him a minor celebrity in the town.  These good times don't last however.  A few months later, his best friend gets shot in an alley.  When it hits him that the cops aren't doing enough to solve this crime, he finally decides to get some justice of his own.

Yes you are Danny, yes you are.

This is a rare flick in that there is a protagonist that I not only like, he actually tugged on my heartstrings here and there.  And it was Danny Trejo playing him!!  Don't get me wrong, I've never been disappointed in the roles I've seen Danny play.  But this flick made me feel a lot of sympathy for the character of Frank Vega.  He has had a rough life, and to see him get praise and respect from his fellow townsfolk tugged my heartstrings in a way that an emotionless robot like myself rarely feel.  This may be a surprise, given the huge roles Danny has played, but this may be one of my all-time favorite performances of his.  It was nice to see him play a character who is humble, shy to a certain point, and actually doesn't want to fight anybody unless absolutely necessary. 

As far as the rest of the movie goes, I felt the supporting cast also did a very good job in their roles.  Anybody watching this to see Ron Perlman may be disappointed, as his part is very small, only a couple of talking scenes.  Another of the biggest pluses of the movie is the camerawork.  The shaky cam that's become so sickeningly popular was kept to a minimum, which nowadays makes me want to give a two star minimum just for any movie having scenes I can actually watch. 

Aww, shit.  Now I gotta do The Stranger with my good hand!!

If there is one downside, there really isn't a whole lot of action.  There are a number of fights, but Trejo jacks most of the bad guys up really quickly.  The end fight is decent enough though, but nothing truly epic.

In the end, I totally recommend watching Badass.  It may not look like much, but it's got it where it counts.  Well, except for gratuitous nudity that is.

Movie Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Action Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

- Ken Bucklesworth, over and out.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Sweaty man in a hot tin suit

IRON MAN 3 (2013)

Iron Man was never one of my favourite heroes growing up. I'm not sure I can pin point why. I mean, one could argue he is basically marvel's version of Batman. If anyone just sat back from their computer screen, hands to both side of their face and said "What the F Boony!" I know, I know, but follow me. Marvel is basically the obligatory PGverse. Whereas DC has always pushed the lines of what a comic can produce theme wise, Marvel has always been content to have Big heroes, Big villains, and Big stories. So Bruce Wayne, billionaire, family tragedy, decides to fight crime. A dark tale of pain and vengeance. Tony Stark AKA Iron Man, billionaire, decides to built a robot suit, decides maybe he's a good guy, and lets the world know he's gunna fight crime. I just never got him. Didn't seem all that interesting. Though I will, in a quick - younger years maybe still current years - comic nerd shout out say I did very much enjoy his role in the Civil War storyline.

Somehow Robert Downey Jr. has turned Iron Man into an electrifying character on the screen. He added what I myself never got on the page, a humanity, a frailness to the character. So I was as pumped as any other ADHD popcorn munching teen might have been to get back in there for another go.

This time around there is a Terrorist, the Mandarin -

Editor's note: Mandarin is also the name of the greatest buffet on earth. I am going there later. Be happy for me. Thank you.

- Is targeting american sites all over the country. He apparently has a way to turn people into bombs. Tony enters the fight after one of his long time friends - Happy (played by the director of the first two IM films Jon Favreau) is severely injured in one of the blasts. He calls out the Mandarin, giving his personal address out over the newlines. Tony and his girl, Pepper (as always played by the still damn fine Miss Paltrow, or is that miss Coldplay... and did she really name her kid apple? Gosh) are having a few relationship issues. Tony himself has been having issues since the events of the Avengers. Not sleeping, anxiety attacks. Well, all of that gets pushed to the sidelines as the Mandarin attacks and destroys Tony's home. Tony and Pepper are inside. She gets out, Tony gets buried in the rubble. The world thinks Tony is dead, and he lets it stay that way as he begins to put the pieces of the plot together, and the pieces of his suit.

That's right Tony. This time you go in the hard way.

Ok. First, the supporters. Ben Kingsley as the Mandarin is awesome. I can't really explain how until you see the film, but every once in a while its good to be reminded of the man's epicness. Guy Pearce is terrific, it was very nice to see him have a role he could really lay into, and one of the more dimensional guy/badguy roles. Jon Favreau in a small role as Tony's head of security is very fun. Don Cheadle finally gets a little more third dimension to his role, and lastly Gwenyth Paltrow. I have a confession, I crushed hard on Miss P back in the day. I even saw Shakespear in love in theatre... Yup. And she put some work in for this film. She spends a fair bit of time in this film showcasing the abs, and they are tight folks... like tiger. But, I guess more importantly, she and Downey have no problem at any moment convincing you they are lovers, and closer than their time on screen should allow. But that's what great acting, and chemistry can do.

The change of director seems to have been a good call. Shane Black a man who has written a bunch of classic action gold, to my knowledge has only directed one other film - Kiss, kiss, bang, bang. Also starring Robert D. Junior, and so I can guess who cheerleaded him for the directors chair (BTDubs, for you text speakers lol,  if you haven't seen that little film, make time, as a bonus you can find it on bluray for 5-10$ Absolute gem of an rarely seen flick). He owns the budget, owns the scope, and really adds some class to a film that by all means should just feel like audience pleasing fun - and it is- but it manages to be more. A story of a man for one. Tony takes time out of the suit here, a lot. Having to rely on himself while he repairs it. It was nice to see, be reminded just how brilliant the man is. In one non suit fight he creates 3 or four weapon attacks with combinations from a restaurant kitchen. They added a little kid that helps hide him, which should have been Awwww moment shit to please the PG crowd, but leave it to Downey and the writers (and yes the kid) to make so very sarcastically enjoyable.

Um. I had to... this is why she's hot, this is why she's...

IRON MAN is the jewel in Marvel's crown. And it is Robert Downey. Case in point ask any comic fan to name his top 5, hell, maybe even top 10 marvel characters... I bet you Iron man don't make the list. But, on screen, he is dominate. Take this into consideration. Opening weekend for this film (north american) - 175 million. Total North American haul for Captain America, and Thor - roughly 185 million each. Ya. Iron Man made that in three days. Also, 700 million worldwide. Pretty freaking impressive. Though after the Avengers it will be interesting to see how the other heroes do in their sequels. I'm guessing not quite that good.

Also hearing this may be the last film, and with how they wrap this one up - could be. Either way I'm fine with it. I think Downey is done with the character (outside taking the boatload of cash for Avengers 2) and why not. If you include the Avengers sequel, he will have played the character 5 times (no I am not including the cameo in another marvel film as that is just silly). Thats a lot.

Movie scale 4 out of 5 stars
Action/superhero scale 4 out of 5 stars

The Tony Stark anxiety and such from the Avengers fallout was very unexpected, and brilliant. One part he mentions how he was fighting aliens, space, and he's just a man. Nice way to keep the film grounded. I will surprisingly miss Downey's Tony Stark if he does move on.

-Chuck B. Boonsweet


Thursday, May 2, 2013



Ok. People. It is time to accept something. The action films of the 90s that we all love were cheesy, formulaic, and nonsensical fun. There was a basic plot. Villain, henchman, one lone un-buyable hero, violence. That was it, possibly with one to two sets of boobs. And we hold them in high regard. Well, instead of bitching about how they Just don't make them like they used to, maybe its time when they do we support it... instead of you know bashing how basic, and formulaic it is... Really....

Arnold Schwarzenegger returns to the big screen in a starring role for the first time since I believe Terminator 3. So ya, kinda a big deal. They pair him with an asian film maker of supreme abilities - Jee Woon Kim (man behind the awesome The good, the bad, and the weird, and I saw the devil). Sprinkle in some grade A classic plot: Super cartel bad guy escapes federal custody by way of a reved up ride, and with the help of a private army, heads for the border. The only man in his way Sheriff Ray "I will terminate you" Owens.

Yup it's all here. Big City cop burnt out, looking to live out his days in small town peace. The deputy that just wants the job to be more exciting. The bad boy, and woman cop who just might work out. And the comedic relief with the heart of gold (who also collects giant guns).

This folks is perhaps the first film I have been able to say this about in years - WELCOME BACK ACTION MOVIE! Hard R rating. Blood everywhere. Arnold spouting off some classic one liners. The shoot outs are awesome. Intense, were crafted, and just the right amount of humour every three or four bodies to smooth it over. I was seriously cheering at parts just due to the giddy awesome. For instance, Arnold tackles a man off a roof, then proceeds to blow his head off while they are falling. Why? Don't know. Was it overkill? Yup. Did I love it? Hells bells - yes!

I watched this film with my buddy and we were actually laughing and high fiving throughout... well okay, one high five, but it was legit... seriously legit high fivage... is it still kool to add "Age" after things? Or did that go out when twitter came in? Before twitter came in?

Screw it, moving on.

The bad guys do little more than growl and die - don't need anything more really. Arnold is loving the screen chewing up scenery whenever possible. And they even manage to fit in an awesome final showdown. Yes. You know how much I love me a good showdown, and what has been lacking... what have I been ranting about - leave it to Schwarzs to bring it back.

I approved of every moment of this film...

Like this one...
Um, Johnny... I really don't see anyone there...
Did you not see the sweetness that was the alternate poster at the beginning? I know you down.

Movie scale 3 out of 5 stars
Action movie scale 4 out of 5 stars

My highest action rating in a while. Blood, more blood, fast cars, a corn field... and more blood. Make time, and call your boys... this one deserves company!

Charles B Boonsweet is out this chillage yo!


Wednesday, May 1, 2013

CRAP! April '13


We have ourselves a very rare thing here - the first ever brand new film, that has been deemed by yours truly as CRAP! Worthy. Rob Zombie's Lords of Salem. 

Sometimes I feel the world of horror fans have a tendency to show love to those they deem as one of their own. Rob Zombie might be the prime example of that. How else can any one explain a fanbase for house of a 1000 corpses ? Yes it was a violent, dark, evil, horror film - grand. But what about a few little things like plot, characters, rising action, a climax...? Then he came out with The devils rejects and behold it all came together. Zombie's camera skills were becoming seriously noteworthy, and the movie was a fun trip down grindhouse lane. Then he decided to redo HALLOWEEN. Of which the horror community was split. I was of the opinion it was a fun little romp into a classic, but... BUT! it did showcase a very major issue with Rob Z films: The writing.

I will not even mention Halloween 2 as the mere thought of it just hurts... deeply.

So, I would like to say before I begin that I have respect for all filmakers, especially those that show the promise that Zombie has behind the camera... however, there is just no forgiving this film.

About 45 minutes in my friend turns to me and says "You know, if this film turns out to be about heroin addiction, it might make sense"

Yup. That happened.

So your plot. Female Radio personality receives a record from a source only identified as "The lords" later to be named "The lords of salem". The record apparently is made by some coven of witches worshipping a long dead demon, or witch, or demon witch... so um, she trips out for a whole movie, and then may or may not be the vessel for the birth of the apocalypse.

Thats it. Nothing else.

No conflict. No heroes. No substance. No legitimate scares .No one to care about. No connection. 1 likeable character. And sadly, less than par acting. Sheri Moon Zombie, as in the directors wife hasn't been too bad in her hubby movie screen roles... but this is a very large step in the wrong direction. As a supporting character I've enjoyed her, but here, as the focus of the entire film... her limits are apparent. I do think she can act, but not carry an entire film. Though, as I touched on, the writing is simply ... atrocious.

Demon? Little person? No - It's turkey Dinner man!

Ok. So there is one likeable character. Well rounded, well acted... the guy trying to put it all together and save the girl. Only, well, he gets offed without so much as a whimper. Ahhhhh Zombie. I get that it's got a 70s vibe, and people are comparing it to "Rosemary's Baby" and some other classics, but how. That's like comparing a double cheeseburger from MacDonalds to one you hand pressed and charbroiled on the grill at your boys... But they're both hamburgers... right? Hahaha

What else?

Oh, right, how about a likeable character? Are we suppose to feel for the main chick because she has a dog? Apparently she is a recovering junkie. And makes fun of her radio guests, and ignores the guy that loves her... By the way that side story never gets explored. Ever. And the few interactions they have are so amateurishly handled you'll think teenagers wrote the scene.

Then, just to frustrate you Zombie will rock a few scenes with an ability for image and position that could make any hollywood "genius" drool, then unfortunately someone speaks. Oh yeah, so lets see what else... a whole bunch of demonic imagery with no pay off. Just evil for the sake of being evil. And I get it, there is an audience for this kind of film, people who will tell you that you just don't understand true horror if you dont get Zombie, that he's a throwback to the glory days... bullshit. Bullshit. I have watched everything, and then some, that was the glory days... amazing performances, solid writing, mind blowing twists... there is nothing like that here. Just demon baby things, and witch bitches and well... ugly naked chicks.

Honestly one of the worst films I have seen, ever. I love Zombie's background, I grew up on the guy's films, and I just really want to love something he creates... but that will only happen when he stops writing the films, and casting them.

Oh, OOOOooooooo and another thing, why? I mean really, why? What is the why in this film? The point? The purpose? The message? The reason it exists? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. What can you leave saying: Um remember that part when the hallway door opened, that was creepy...

Let me ask you something. You go to see the woman you love, she looks all F'd up, and some creepy old lady tells you to leave. Do you a) Sadly leave as Directed. b) Kick down the door and drag your woman to safety... or c) Punch the old woman, then rescue the damsel.

Did you guess option a) ? Yup. Little old says your friend isn't leaving but she'll say bye outside, and then the guy is like, aw shucks guess I'll wait outside. I mean it looks like she could really use some help. A lot of help. YOUR FRIEND IS IN PERIL DOOOOOOO SOMETHING D-BAG

Oh. And here. Last scene in the film. A woman standing on top of about 27 dead naked fat chicks. Glowing head. Roll credits.

I lost an hour plus of my life that I could have spent on better things... like Sabrina the teenage witch reruns.

movie scale 1 out of 5 stars
Horror scale 1.5 out of 5 stars.

I really liked the would be hero guy in this. Watching him put together the pieces, he just felt real. But you know, then Rob did nothing with it. At all, because we needed more retarded imagery and Sheri Moon screen time.


Boonsweet saying he is officially done with the Rob Zombie film adventure. No more.