Friday, August 30, 2013

Do you Kicketh the Ass?

KICK-ASS 2 (2013)

Let me start by saying I am a huge fan of the Comic. And as a rational, logical, human being I understood that they were not going to be able to follow the comic exactly. In the first film they managed to stay very close to the comic, however they did change a few points.

1- Big Daddy was revealed to be nothing more than a fraud in the comic. Not a disgraced cop, it turned out he had simply been a crazy comic collector that kid-napped his daughter and brainwashed her into being a crazy killer.
So ya, it made sense in a film version to keep him as a hero, and in some way excuse the insane
amounts of violence.
2 - Kick Ass does not get the girl of his dreams. Not even close.
Again in the film, it worked for him to get the chick. You wanted him too, he had put a lot of work in, he deserved a reward lol.

So, going into part 2, I knew they were going to change things. And I was okay with that, as long as the core of the story was there, and it was.

This time around Kick-Ass has been training with Hit-Girl behind the scenes, and joins a superhero team lead by Colonel Stars and Stripes (a nearly unrecognizable and brilliant Jim Carey). Meanwhile Hit Girl promises her new caretaker that she will stop fighting crime. Sadly, the day to day life of a grade niner is proving far more difficult to handle, and crime, well crime just got an upgrade in the form of the Mother Fucker. Red mist from the first film, going whole evil.

Craziest air guitar showdown ever (shout out AIRGUITAR nation)

There, now doesn't that sound like fun? And it is. I've read a lot of people slamming the sequel for its lack of heart and charm... what they don't seem to understand was that the charm of the first film was the rise of the uber nerd Dave Lizewski (Kick-Ass) into an inspiration and true hero. This time around the heart is carried by Hit girl. A girl that never got a childhood, and would rather kill 17 mobsters viciously then listen to a Justin Beiber CD. Then, again, I probably would too. Chloe Moretz is a very talented actress, and strangely as a younger star, has seemingly found her groove in aggressive adultish characters. She is not just going for fowl mouthed and blood stained here. There are some real moments here... one in particular where she asks Dave if he blames her. That was one of my fav scenes from the comic, preserved here... YAY!

Also, much like the first film, it paces along with a gorgeously R-rated level of entertainment. Never taking itself too seriously, until the third act. Like the first film, things get real, people die, and they have to settle the divide between dressing like a superhero, and what it means to be a superhero in a really real, and F'd up world.

Wait, you mean this isn't where the showdown happens? But I got all dressed up. 

I think there were a lot of people that were worried that the violence and chaos, with the new director, might be watered down... worry not dear blood lovers! This film is unashamed of its R rating, and honestly... watching a lawn mower get thrown into, and make meat out of the occupants of a vehicle... might even top the first.

There are some issues with consistency, like Dave/Kickass's woman from the first and how they handle/remove her. But luckily you really didn't care about her anyway, so all good (and to anyone that has read the comic, no she did not go out like that... ). I was also sad that the big villains/heroes showdown was not front in centre in the downtown area... I understand budget and all... but still, seeing the city erupt in destruction would have been swell... Also, after I finished the film. I thought. Where the hell did the dog go?

There are some genuine laughs in here, some awesome scenes of the red stuff, Hit Girl still rocks, KickAss is less of a pussy... and Jim Freaking Carey! I mean this should be cause for the masses to be gathered to chomp their popcorn in front of its B-movie glory. But well, these smaller Genre based films... just continue to prove the audience doesnt really show up... this film is on track to just break even. I am reminded of another great fun R rated genre film - Dredd and how quickly it left your local cinema. But then it made all kinds of $$ on Bluray/DVD?Digital, I have a feeling that is what will happen here...

EDITOR'S NOTE - These are films for the supposed nerds, and fanboys/girls out there... you know, all these kids with blogs, and twitter; crashing message boards with film hate, and opinion. Well, gosh, we all better start actually showing up to support this stuff, or it well stuff being made! Seriously peeps.

In theatre, or at home, this ones a blast folks. And to the comic purest... Really? I think they covered their bases... If you really needed to see A dog's Head on a human body... well... there may be something wrong with you...

Movie scale 3 out of 5 stars
Comic movie scale 3.5 out of 5 stars.

and yes. I'm sure you've all heard about Jim Carey deciding he no longer supported this film. Shame, cause he really is good here. Steals pretty much every scene.

Chuck B, saying I've been having way to much fun at the cinema lately :)


Wednesday, August 28, 2013

A party without drinking games is NOT a party!!


Warning: douchebags are closer than they appear.

Hello my beloved Buckleheads.  Today I'm taking a foray into independent waters with Drinking Games, directed by Ryan Gielen.  It's based on an off-Broadway play called Dorm, which was written by Blake Merriman (who also plays Richard in Drinking Games).  I want to make numerous references throughout this review to the cartoon Undergrads, but I'm not sure how many of you will know what I'm talking about.  So instead, let's not waste any time, and get right into it.

it's the last night of the fall semester at the college, which means two things: most of the campus is empty due to students going home for vacation, and that on this night marks the traditional last-night campus party Snowmageddon.  Campus resident Richard, however, doesn't want to be bothered.  He just wants to finish a paper he's writing before his deadline passes.  His friend and roommate Shawn want none of that though.  Shawn is looking to party and hopefully lose his virginity, and he wants his buddy Richard to be in on the fun.  Not the virginity losing though, that would just be weird.

In the middle of their conversation (literally) is Shawn's friend Noopi, who is lying unconscious on their floor after a previous session of heavy partying took it's toll on him.  Noopi has a strange knack for appearing and disappearing at will, and somehow he managed to find his way into Richard and Shawn's room.  Upon his awakening, Noopi immediately forces his will in the room, eventually getting a small party going despite Richards protests.  Among the group is Melanie, who has a complicated relationship with Richard.  During the course of the movie the two have a couple of back-and-forths, but nothing really comes of it.  The end result I'll leave to you to watch and find out for yourselves.


The night goes on, and Noopi continues to fuel the party scene in the room.  He introduces drugs to said scene, and even goes out of the way to get the dorms RA out of the picture so the party can continue without interruption.  As the drugs and alcohol flow, the atmosphere of the movie darkens some.  And the more fucked up Noopi's brain gets, the more his true, nasty colors show.  He has already ruined Richard's night, how much worse can he do to everyone else?  Well, that's for me to know and for you to find out. 

I must admit, I was a little thrown off with the synopsis I read for Drinking Games.  I read two different descriptions, and both indicated possible murder, whether direct or indirect.  And to be honest I never saw any real indication that anything like that was happening.  There was one part late in the movie where something COULD have happened to someone, but it was never actually shown or confirmed so I'm not convinced anything death related happened.  Drinking Games is labelled as a drama/thriller, but to me is was pretty much drama the whole way.

Note to self: Viagra supplies are low.

 However, that's not to say it wasn't enjoyable.  For the most part this movie was very well acted.  And many of the line deliveries were just fantastic.  One that immediately stands out in my mind as awesome is the story Shawn (played by Nick Vergara) told around the 9 minute mark.  The way he told it was funny as shit.  A few of the characters remind me of people I know/knew, so I found it easy to follow in their lives on that snowy night.  Rob Bradford was very good as Noopi.  Bradford played a very convincing drug and alcohol fueled scumbag/borderline rapist who, despite the description given, was also pretty funny here and there before his darker side took over later on.

If you're expecting anything exciting or significant to happen in this, you're out of luck.  This movie is very character driven, with not a lot going on around them.  Of course, it all takes place in a mostly abandoned dorm, so naturally you wouldn't expect much to happen anyway.  So if you are into that sort of thing, and you spent time in a dorm or even just partied in a dorm before, you should definitely give Drinking Games  a shot.  Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a sudden urge to sharpen my beer pong skills.

Movie Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Thriller Rating: 1.5 out of 5 stars (3.5 for Drama)

-I'm Ken Bucklesworth, and you're not.

@KenBucklesworth, @BoonsBuckles

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Ninja Dream warriors! (and big warm heart)

INK (2009)

So I know there is going to be some Booniac, or Bucklehead out there that is going to be all "Ya, great review Boony what took you so damn long?" Well screw you random Vidiot. There is a lot of filmed entertainment out there and sometimes, well it takes me a while to stumble across these things. Ok. Good.

Moving on.

That was the first thought I had when I finished this film.
Ok, before I gush with what I think should be one of the MUSTSEEs for anyone that believes the indie scene is where it's at... or anyone simply tired of the same sad story structure and hero arcs of the mainstream...
Let's talk plot.
So. There is a young girl. There are also beings that influence our dreams. Feeding us good, and warmth, and basically breeding a connection to all our shiny places. This young girl is a wonderfully imaginative child, and has become a favourite of one of these dream people. There are also dark beings that feed you evil, and breed nightmares while you sleep. One night a dark one takes the spirit of the little girl. And a quest through the world of dreams, nightmares, and our world, begins to get her back.

Yup. I'm gunna say it. The nose knows!

The fights between the dream warriors (shout out 80s!) and the nightmare people are surprisingly awesome. And when I say surprising, I mean, I was shocked... and thoroughly entertained. The structure of the quest in the dream world as the creature drags his child hostage through the twisted universe is giddy gold. Something straight from the mind of a Neil Gaiman.

I am reminded of the famous quote from Alfred Hitchcock: "To make a great film you need three things  - the script, the script, and the script."

How true is that? How many huge budgeted films forget that simply fact? INK to me, is the definition of that statement. It's a small budgeted film, that almost fully convinces you it is not by way of an extremely quick and intriguing script. The blind "Pathfinder" in particular is an example of how to create interest in a character, so that when his moment comes it's effectively gripping. Throw in a few camera and lighting tricks, some above par acting (the Father is great), a few decent fights, a simply and effective score... and well... you have what adds up to one of my biggest surprises of the last few years.

This is not a film for everyone. Let me make that clear. There are some very grainy shots (the directors attempt to differentiate worlds). The effects are, while clever for the budget, still very limited by the budget. So if you are honestly put out by cheap looking projects, then there really is no need to invest here... unless you have come to trust my opinion above all else (and I mean, of course you do) and believe this will be the film to change your opinion... because it damn well could. And to all those films I have watched and just been annoyed as shit with ducktape and spackle endings, twisty twist non-sense BS. Finally, a complicated, layered film, that comes together in the end in a satisfactory and "Oh that makes sense" kinda way.

Apparently Kevin from Sin City reproduced... 

This is a film I will watch again. And probably again. Even if the story had failed to live up to the attempts at grandeur by the filmmaker... it would have been worth a rewatch if only to appreciate the glory of indie triumph.

(Let pause for a moment as I raise my fist in the air)

There are some really awesome moments here - The fight near the end... The way the furniture fixes itself as they fight through the house at the beginning... the emotions of the hair cutting scene... Alright I'm gushing now to the bad.

I hope you check this film out, I am, as you can tell, glad I did. Every once in a while a film really catches you off guard and moves you in some way. That is the beauty of film, the reason so many of us film geeks, vidiots, and bloggers invest so much time and effort. Wadding through so much junk. To recapture that feeling. Just desperate for the next fix... Ok, dammit, know this film has made me all sappy. Crap. And... I think I just used a junkie analogy. I'm done.

Good. Most things.
Bad. The budget.

movie scale 4 out of 5 stars
Action/Drama/fantasy scale 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The Claws of ninja fighting Justice!



First I want to state I was not the biggest fan of the original Wolverine solo film. Hugh Jackman's charisma and awesomeness as Wolverine has never been in question, but it was just really a clusterF*** of a film. Bouncing between the comic trueness of the Origins series (six issue story of Wolverines long hidden past life, due to memories lost during his weapon X situation. Am I a comic nerd? No comment), and absolute disgusting hollywood invention - Deadpool. Is all I have to say on that.

However, this second film had a few things going for it;
1. The comic tale it is based on is by far one of the most well know, and revered of Wolverine's 60 + year run (in fact marvel anime put out a series a few years back based on it)
2. James Mangold was directing. The man has some serious skill.
3. Hugh Jackman acknowledged the crap nature of the first film explaining it was all so that they could get to this story.
4. Oh, and lastly, the feeling that this film would be tied into the X-men universe far better than the last (I mean what the F was Gambit doing in that film.... arg!)

And folks I am here to tell you this film, if you are a wolverine fan, this the one you have patiently been pacing around your comic den waiting for. First yes, there are changes to the original story... and No I did not feel they damaged the flow, or coolness to the film.

Oooooooo when I get loose. I'mma gonna cuuuuuut chooo! - Bub. 

First, Jean Grey is in the film. Yes! I know. Connection. Second, she is dead, and wolverine is feeling alllllllll messed up about it. What is that? Consistency? Connection to previous films... gosh. Who knew . Next up, the action is down, and dirty, and well, exactly what you want from wolvy. Lots of claw chaos, and hell... the mutton chops even takes on ninjas! Yup. A lot of em.

The direction is spot on. Never getting too close, letting you appreciate the rage. At the same time there are some very impressive, and classy shots mixed. I have to pause here and say something.... (deep breath)... this may be one of the best/classiest comic book films. It's well acting, brilliantly filmed, well written, in a way it is a perfectly affected tale of one man's quest for redemption. That man just happens to have claws that pop out his hands.


Sometimes i forget just how good an actor Hugh Jackman is. The guy loves what he does, and he loves this character. That comes across.

All in all I know a few of the fan boys out there will ragetype (yup I just TM'd that yo) over details. But people... can we expect more? I think not.

Also the scene after the first run of credits is just.... don't miss it! I am officially beyond stoked for the next entry in the X-men universe. Which may even be an X-force film. Cable and deadpool... on screen? Booya!

I enjoyed this a lot. For anyone bitching about the city and world destruction in Avengers, and Man of steel.... here you go. A slower paced, human take on a "superhero" so shut up! :)

Movie scale 3.5 out of 5 stars
Comic movie scale 4 out of 5 stars

-Good to be back Booniacs.

I'm out.


It's gallows of fun for everyone!!!! Or is it?!?


Ah, Gallowwalkers.  A movie that would probably have been released much earlier had it not have been for it's star Wesley Snipes getting himself in some hot water for tax-evasion.  As it is, it finally got its VOD release on August 6th, so I took it upon myself to check it out and see if it was as promising as the trailer made it seem.

Snipes plays Aman, a man who is cursed thanks to his mother, who broke her covenant with God so that Aman would live.  This particular curse brings back to life anybody who dies by Aman's hand, or gun I suppose.  Not really as zombies though as you might expect.  They're exactly the same people they were before they died, just much uglier.  Anyway, they want payback, and Aman (along with his sidekick Fabulos) have to put them away once and for all.

We at least get to see the ancestors of the children in Village of the Damned.
Well, to be honest, there isn't a whole lot to say.  This movie was pretty damn boring.  If anyone is looking for an action packed Snipes flick, I suggest you go elsewhere.  There are a couple of decent scenes of action, but not enough to pique my interest.  The rest are just either scenes of dialogue that sometimes didn't make much sense, or a number of oddly silent parts where nothing was happening, not even music for most of said scenes, and you still barely knew what was happening.

Probably sue to the whole Snipes being arrested thing, there was more screen time given to the antagonists than to our hero.  And that really didn't help matters, because that was where the main source of confusion came in.  The things they were doing made little sense.  There was a town of all blond people that was never really explained as far as my attention span could tell.  There was one guy who had lizard tails grafted onto the back of his head, how and why I don't know.  And all of this detracted from my enjoyment.  

While this wasn't anything torturous to get through, it definitely isn't something I'd really recommend.  Unless you're a die-hard Snipes fan, go rent or buy something else.  

Movie Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
Horror/Action Rating: 1 out of 5 stars.

- Ken Bucklesworth

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Most redundant title EVER!


So we have the return to form of Arnold Schwarzenegger with The Last Stand. You have Bruce Willis returning with the lackluster A good day to die hard. That means there is only one left... Sly Stone himself... Sylvester Stallone. The final piece of the 90s action threeway. Now I for one want to point out two things about the 90s... they are, and always will be the greatest decade for action films. The straight to video market was booming. The one liners were not as of it over saturated, and damn, I was hitting puberty so all in all. Great decade. Second thing, the fact that the big three aforementioned stars can still draw huge numbers at the box office while there have been no peeps to step up and claim the belt is just sad. Honorary mention to the rock and Tony Jaa. But really, they still have that allure. That untouchable awesomeness that has translated to the next generation through their parents, and well, exploring the world of cinema on their own. Hey it does happen, not every prepubescent stops at the am I team Jacob or Team Edward chat.

Arnold returned with a Bang. Bruce had another mediocre entry... and Sly... well....

Ok. Bullet to the head is as follows: Aging hit man, and his partner kill a guy. Then get double crossed. Partner dies - aging hitman survives to seek vengeance on those that wronged him. An cop (fast and furious' - Sung Kang) Taylor, enlisted the hitman to help him bust a big bad guy he's wanted forever. Of course there is a super badguy employed by the big bad guy . In this case Jason Momoa. Um, so you as an action ... can probably fill in the blanks. Bad assassin kills everyone in his path but can't seem to put Sly down (until some grand climax). Um sly and the cop of course hit each other at first, and mock and joke at each others expense. Oh and Sly has a daughter (who of course is at odds with his hitman career choice)... anyone guess she'll be used against him later in the film? You get a cookie.

So lets start with good. The opening scene is fun, violent, and had promise. The opening little scuffle between Sly and the big bad is awesome. They completely destroy a washroom. Ok. Good. Now, everything else inbetween this scene, and the end showdown is horrid. Bad. Do Not pass go. No 200$. Go home and punch yourself in the nuts bad... but then the damn showdown really is a lotta of fun. It also happens to be the first time we see Jason Momoa show any emotion, or say anything really.

Go ahead. Axe me why I'm still doing this... Axe me!

Ok, as you can tell. The bad out weighs the good. First. This film has some of the worse writing you will ever hear in a film. I actually cringed. Moi, cringed, multiple times. I mean this is a small action film with Sly Stallone in it. Half the movie should be shit blowing up anyway. How hard is it to fill the space between? Apparently its closer to rocket science than I thought...
Uh... its bad.
Listening to Sly and Sung try to push through their "we hate each other but maybe we'll end up friends" banter is just horrible. Alright, I wasn't going to quote any horrible lines, but there is one that starts with Sung explaining how he could kill stallone with his Cell phone. Ya it ends as such:
"Or, I could take the battery out, and drop it in your coffee, poison you"
- "Ya well I could kill you with this apple"
Yup. If you're thinking its a so bad its good scenario. No. No it is not. Sung who has been good I guess in the Fast films, is beyond bad here. The director must have been of scene saying things like -"No! More monotone, Moooorrrrrre monotone!"
Well, this is probably his worst film since.... I don't know... a while. Get Carter maybe? Ya I'll go with that. And I think I may have actually given Get Carter the edge. Anyone who has seen Get Carter knows thats saying something. A lot of something. lol.... A lot a lot of something. And I get the film is called Bullet to the head but does that mean every time someone gets offed with a gun it has to be a relatively closeup of a bullet smashing into their skull? I get it. Ya. I get it thats why the movie is called bullet to the head... I freaking get it!

Look. First rule of a brainless action movie - be cool. And there are moments. Christian Slater's (scene stealing) torture for example, but then Sly and Sung have some banter thrown in and bam, back to sucks ville. Jason Momoa's bad guy is actually pretty slick and badass, shame he doesn't actually get any time on screen to be all intimidating because his "Boss" a cripple with world domination plans, gets more screen time. Hahahahahaha
So to recap. Big muscle cool bad guy that is eventually going to have a kick ass AXE SHOWDOWN with Sly is relegated to back up a guy that has two crutches, is about as interesting as paint drying, and wants to take over some part of a city somewhere.

One of the worse action films of the last ten years. In fact I almost considered putting this in the CRAP! segment. Listen Sly, I know you and the boys are glad to have your jobs back... but you have to step up to impress the new world of fans here... and well, at least try to keep the old faithful ones around.

So disappointed.

Movie scale 1.5 out of 5 stars
Action scale 2.5 out of five 5 stars (1 entire point of that rating is Just i repeat JUST for the axe showdown).

OOoooooooh. A last note. The music. Oh my god the music is bad. They go for this whole down and dirty blues vibe. Fine. But they ah, mustve only paid for one song... No joke. One song plays through 90% of the film. ONE SONG. Over and over. It's like, oh scene change, wait for it, and there it is. Just so freaking cheap. I mean this is basically straight to video, low low budget crap all around... acting directing, writing, music, lighting (ya and how freaking often to I mention the lighting?). How is Sly in this? Sigh.

Chuck "I miss the 90s" Boonsweet signing off.

Ninja Movie Of the Month AUG '13


First let it be known... my computer has AIDS. Ok. Not really aids more like, emotional issues... but moral of the story. I have been without my trusted companion in far too long... so now... I am returned to continue the education, re-education (and yes in some instances- DeEducation), of your film loving selves.... let us return with a boom. Or a Hiya... or a thumwampa (the sound of a flying roundhouse)... Again.
My apologies.
Seriously... missed you Booniacs, and Buckleheads.

How could I not do a NMOTM review on a film called The super Ninja. Exactly, had to. Gunna save my charming wit for after the intro... so-here-we-goooooo

So martial arts master is a cop on the force with a black partner in what is suppose to be New York (you can of course prove its New York what with the shots of the twin towers... Totally new york). He crosses the wrong people - the wrong people being a drug dealing Ninja that runs everything. Including the police. This evil drug dealing Ninja also has "Five element" Ninjas in his back pocket that can seriously F up your evening. So, our star John, has to battle his way out of a corrupt police force, and find his way through Five Elemental Ninjas to the final showdown.

Before watching this film there are a few things you need to ask yourself...
1. Do you enjoy hilarious stereotypes that are unintentional?
2. Do you enjoy horrible dubbing that spits out ridiculous racist lines?
3. Do you like Ninja's that can throw fire balls?
4. Do you like boobs?
5. Do you like english actors that are in asian films, and are clearly speaking their lines in english, but are dubbed over with bad english?
6. Do you kung fu?
7. Do you enjoy Asians pretending to be Bruce Lee, in aviators?

If you answered yes to at least 4 of those questions, then you my dear Ninja fan are in for a great time. When I reviewing a film of this kind there are two options; those that are actually classics (36 Chamber of the Shoalin, Master of the Flying Guillotine, etc) and then there are those that are so ridiculously cheesy and unintentionally funny that they achieve a classic status all their own. The key with the later is that it needs one key component to make all the horrible flaws enjoyable... good fights! And this one has it folks. The choreography is surprisingly good. In the beginning very amateurish directing almost kills it, but by the half why point he has a handle on things. And he has lots of practice lol, this movie is 80% action. Feet flying, element ninjas surfing water on a reed, Fireballs being tossed, machine gun shoot outs. Everything you could want.

The Fire Ninja in particular is very kool. His hands actually light on fire and stay that way for a bit. Even through the fights. The kung fu is hilariously sped up at some points, but I mean, by that point I was dialled in for the ride. John's black partner is so damn 70s black guy that you will laugh out loud at some of the things he says. You can tell this was some asian guys best attempt to write an american buddy action flick. Only problem is all he had to go on where the films he had seen. So we get an asian version of 70s action flicks... set in the fictional land of Neeeeeew York.


Surprising amount of nudity in this film, I'll assume on the success of the R rated action film in North America, that this was another attempt to cash in on that "Type" of film in Asia. Hoping of course for worldwide appeal. Boobs everywhere, graphic sex, and tons of violence and black guy props.

If you are a fan of C grade kung fu from the 70s/80s and have not seen this film you are doing yourself a horrible disservice. This is really for the cheese fans only. Sure the hardcore foot to face fans will find something to like, but the horrid dubbing, and hilarious action (John at one point disarms a cop by flinging a folder, a paper folder, at his hand) will have you shaking your head. Me, well it had me cheering....


Movie scale 1.5 out of 5 stars
Ninja movie scale 3.5 out of five stars.

The fights were damn fun. And the addition of Boobs, and a few very cool 1 on 1 showdowns pushed this one over the top...

Right on Brotha!

-Chuck B is keeping it reel on these here streets.