Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Reviews from the Hatch: The Ninth Gate

Tiff’s Take

The Ninth Gate is like a Naked Gun that actually takes itself seriously. It tries to be a steamy, seductive thriller, but just comes off as hokey. The storyline had a lot of promise, but it fizzled out quickly. I should have known early on in the movie, when Lena Olin’s character compared Johnny Depp’s character to a mercenary, that it would only get worse from there. He’s a book dealer for God’s sake!  

The acting was bland and stilted, and the overall film quality was incredibly poor. Not what I expected from a Roman Polanski movie. I read in a review prior to watching that Johnny Depp won’t even talk about this film. Now I know why.   

Closed Hatch, for sure. But at least it made me laugh.  

Pat’s Take

This could've been a really good movie. I like the premise that there is an evil book or books out there that can conjure up the devil. However after the plot was hatched, unfortunately all those involved seemed to lose their ambition, focus and direction. 

The acting was horrendous. I still don't get Johnny Depp. I see his value to the craft, but sometimes his quirkiness wears thin. I wish he would've played it straight because at times I thought I was watching Inspector Clouseau in The Pink Panther.

Spoiler Alert!

I didn't like that the devil or devil's helper was just hanging around. I'd rather have had the movie give me glimpses or shadows of Lucifer, but that wasn't the case. Instead I get a mysterious woman who floats through the air and has eyes that change colors. What the hell, Corso! Did you not just see either of those things just happen? Throughout the movie, Depp's character just glosses over events like this in such an "oh well" manner that it just wasn't plausible.

If you just wanna have some fun and not take yourself or a movie too serious than have at it, but if you are looking for a chilling Satan in the flesh flick this is not the one for you. Because I liked the plot, I'm gonna cheat and give it a half closed hatch.

Robert’s Take

With equal parts satanic conspiracy and detective story elements, The Ninth Gate strikes me as a mix between Polanski’s Rosemary’s Baby and one of his more recent flicks, The Ghost Writer. The film is a mixed bag. It’s got a great story – creepy more than outright scary – and  acting from the cast ranging from decent (Lena Olin) to great (Frank Langella, Johnny Depp). However, it also has some hammy moments and miscellaneous goofiness – who was in charge of the stunt wires (because you can clearly see that shit in at least one scene)?

A common piece of advice on the film: see it more than once. Depp plays a book detective of sorts tracking down texts supposedly written by the devil and the story that plays out is somewhat twisty, turny, and long.

Nick’s Take

In distinct contrast with Tiffany’s and Pat’s takes on the film, I’d have to say that I enjoy this movie.  This was approximately the fifth time I’ve watched this film and while I do agree with Tiffany inasmuch as her opinion upon the first watch (I didn’t “get it” the first time I watched it either), I find that with each viewing, I like it a little more. The zany music that might throw some off at first I just find generally creepy. “The Woman’s” distorting face while riding Corso’s throbbing member is actually quite disturbing as well. There is an abundant use of the color red throughout the entire film also, which displays a sort of “Hell on Earth” appeal . . . and if you agree with any of the crazy-ass rich people in the movie, you might agree with that appeal. If you care to watch more than once, you will notice the extremely heavy overtones of the color before each death is revealed. 

A lot of this movie also reminds me of the stellar Kubrick pic, Eyes Wide Shut. Both were released in 1999 and maybe Polanski and Kubrick opted to collaborate on the separate projects in order to push a few of us, while watching them together (much like the three “different” books in Gate), into something deliciously wicked. I’ve not been made aware of another 1999 release of a similar nature, but I would be astounded to find one. Anyone know of such a film that could be tied into these two?  If so, you’re probably keeping it to yourself, like Frank Langella’s character.

Now Hear This!: Monday Didn't Suck

I saw the tweets and “I jizzed in my pants.” It was the best Monday ever! Early yesterday morning, unexpectedly, I saw that the Arctic Monkeys released a new single. I hadn’t heard a word about it, not that I would be privy, but they usually give a heads up. The song “R U Mine?” is much harder than most of the stuff on Suck It and See, which is not out of the ordinary for the Arctic Monkeys’ B-sides and single releases. I knew they had it in them. I just wish there were more songs like it on Suck It. The accompanying video is way cool, watch below, and see for yourself.

The other bit of music news, that had me screaming like a preteen girl at a Justin Beiber concert, was the info that Delta Spirit was streaming their soon to be released, self titled album on Rolling Stone's website. The 11 track LP, release date March 13, is a slight departure from their first two efforts and a long way from their EP. Every early review I've read (basically copy and pasted from Rolling Stone, says “sounds like My Morning Jacket, Radiohead and Wilco.” I'd be cautious to label this album as sounds like, because Matt Vasquez’ voice is way different from those three frontmen. However, I will agree that it’s less folksy, more experimental and much cleaner than their previous releases. After the first and second listens, my favorites are the lead single, “California”, “Money Saves”, “Empty House”, “Into the Darkness”, “Time Bomb” and “Tear It Up”. Four tracks, “Idaho”, “Home”, “Otherside” and “Yamaha” need further attention. One track, “Tellin’ the Mind",, rocks minus the obnoxious background native scream. With the scream, I can't wait for it to be over.

Here is the link to Rolling Stone

Monday, February 27, 2012

Music Video Monday! King Charles: "Ivory Road"

For this week’s MVM, I’ve decided to pick a fairly new one.  I don’t have much to say as I’ve only recently discovered King Charles, but I can and will say this: I’m really digging him.  Despite the hair.  I read, upon discovery, that he opened for Mumford & Sons on their most recent tour and that’s just aces in my book.  He has yet to put out a full debut album, but you can find his Mississippi Isabel - EP (from which this track is taken) and a two-track Single on iTunes.  I recommend the EP; its four songs of delirious delight and, as I’m sure you’re probably aware, on heavy rotation on my iPod.  I hope this track puts you in a good mood and I hope we get a full length album from this dude in the near future.  Post your thoughts and let me know what you think of him.  And hey, have a good week.

Countdown to Avengers: The Incredible Hulk

The Avengers comes out May 4. Nerd Lunch, Cavalcade of Awesome and to the escape hatch! are counting down to the big day with a series of posts dedicated to all things Avengers. Below is our look at The Incredible Hulk and you can check out the first two installments of our series here and here. Enjoy!

Mini Review

Louis Letterier's The Incredible Hulk isn't a perfect film, but it succeeds because of capable directing, a good cast led by Edward Norton, and great special effects.

I can remember being really excited for 2003's Hulk, directed by Ang Lee and starring Eric Bana. Seriously. I remember seeing a trailer for the flick in 2002 and wondering if the film would ever arrive. Flash forward a year shy of a decade and not only did we get Hulk but this film as well.

I could talk about how this film succeeded where the 2003 version failed, but I don't think that's the case (and I don't really think the 2003 version failed for that matter). Both films have their strong points, but at the end of the day, in the space of nine years, we're coming up on the third incarnation of the Hulk character. In a nutshell, it feels like this film, despite all the great things going for it, is probably the weak link in The Avengers chain.

I think this version was trying to ditch some of the brainy, lofty stuff from the '03 version and give us more HULKSMASH!!! And that's okay. Norton is always great, more so when he's working on projects that he actually wants to be involved with, which was clearly the case here. He had a passion of sorts for this film, even going so far as rewriting the script. As far as the rest of the cast, Liv Tyler as Betty Ross was definitely acceptable and, while he’s no Sam Elliott (Elliott’s ‘stache should probably have its own SAG card) William Hurt turns in a fine performance as General “Thunderbolt” Ross.

The film ends on a strange note, with Banner seemingly transforming into the Hulk and getting a kick out of it. I'm not sure the filmmakers knew exactly what they wanted to do with the character and maybe they knew that the future of the franchise was uncertain.

Avengers Connections

The Incredible Hulk is a great film to review for this series, since it’s the first film that really starts building up the shared universe of The Avengers. Right off the bat, the beginning credit sequence is scattered with references to Iron Man – Stark Industries blue prints and technology pop up amidst scenes of the military searching for Banner. Tony Stark appears at the end of the film to speak with General Ross. And the Hulk's campus battle with Ross' troops end up figuring into the connections later on, but we'll talk about that another time.

Rather than just refer to Iron Man, however, TIH takes it one step further – it shares quite a few connections with Captain America, a film that hadn’t even started pre-production at that point. Emil Blonsky as The Abomination was fueled by the same super soldier serum that made Steve Rogers the hero that we now know and love. And although it’s a deleted scene, you can supposedly see Cap frozen in the ice when Banner tries to off himself in the Antarctic.

And about that scene Stark shares with General Ross. To my knowledge, this is the only film that doesn't have a post-credits sequence. Instead, they had Tony Stark show up at the end of the film, before the credits rolled. I think this is a testament to the filmmakers' goal of building the shared universe. They really wanted the audience to know that they were weaving a greater story here, so they showed us Stark before the credits rolled, making it a bigger part of the story and ensuring that everyone caught it.

How Will The Hulk fit Into The Avengers?

This is kind of a sore subject for me because I'm disappointed that Norton won't be in The Avengers. I think he did a great job as Banner/Hulk, and I think he would have played off Robert Downey Jr. perfectly.

The Incredible Hulk probably isn’t my favorite “Avengers Universe” film – if anything, it probably ties with Thor – but I am in a way the most interested to see how The Hulk fits into this movie. He’s essentially a monster and, as I mentioned earlier, his last film saw him emerging from Banner almost triumphantly. The only person we’ve really seen him interact on a human level with is Betty Ross. How will he interact with the rest of the team? How will the film handle him working with Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, etc.? Will the Hulk understand that some of the puny humans around him are his friends and teammates?

I'm wondering how Banner as a character will fit into the film as well. He'd have every right to feel like an outsider in the group. I'm sure the rest of the team feels like they have gifts, whereas Banner feels like he's burdened with a curse.

One last thing – as we all know, we’ve had a different actor portray Bruce Banner in the ’03 and ’08 versions and now we’ll have a third with Mark Ruffalo. Similarly, the physical appearance of The Hulk has changed over the years as well. What The Avenger’s Hulk looks like compared to Ang Lee’s Hulk might not matter, but this new version looks different from his 2008 counterpart as well. Strange that the filmmakers wouldn't have kept the same appearance.

Some Thoughts From CT at Nerd Lunch

I really enjoy this movie and wish it had been more successful so that it would merit a further expansion of the Hulk characters in sequels. In particular, the Leader is set up for a sequel as a villain. It also seems to be something that Marvel Studios is somewhat overlooking. With Ed Norton not returning in the role, the Hulk design changing, and neither of the Ross characters appearing, there is almost nothing to truly connect this movie to the Avengers. While audiences can and will accept the cast change, this will require a bit more time in The Avengers devoted to establishing Ruffalo as Banner. Time that I would have preferred be spent elsewhere honestly.

It is also worth noting that there are several references to the Bixby TV show in this. I mentioned the TV show before in my "Before the Avengers Initiative" post. In the origin sequence, there are two direct homages to the TV show. The equipment resembles what was used by Bixby and the flashing "danger" light was the first shot of the intro. Bixby appears while Norton's Banner watches TV. A few bars of the TV show theme play while Banner strolls through town in a post-Hulk scene. A reporter named Jack McGee is reporting on the fight on the campus. And finally, an emphasis is placed on Banner's eyes before he makes his transformation into the Hulk.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Favorite Scene Friday! Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story: Smell Blind

Where'd all the time go? It seems like I just posted my favorite scene only days ago. As fast as life flies by, it's so very important that we remember to stop and smell the roses, however, that can be hard to do if you suffer from the same problem as Dewey Cox. Today's scene comes from the grosstastic, juvenile and sometimes over the top biopic parody, "Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story". In this scene, Dewey (John C. Reilly) is being interviewed by an unprepared and pessimistic news reporter (Jane Lynch). Hope you enjoy and every once in awhile you should stop and smell the roses. That's, of course, if you can.

Batch o’ Hatch: Natural Selection Trailer, Dr. Sleep, and Favorite Scene Friday News!

Natural Selection Trailer 

IMDb posted a trailer for Natural Selection and for some reason I really like it. Truthfully I thought it was a horror film at first, given the tone of the beginning of the preview, but it ends up being a great looking little dramedy. Who knew Rachael Harris – the bitchy girlfriend from The Hangover – would be getting high praise for a starring role in an indie film? 

Dr. Sleep

This is more literature news than film, but IMDb via Icons of Fright shared a recent clip of Stephen King at the Savannah Book Festival reading from Dr. Sleep, the sequel to his novel The Shining. The video isn’t great as it was recorded by someone pretty far from the stage where King was reading but it's cool all the same to know that this sequel exists. According to Wikipedia, Mr. King finished the first draft of the book this past November. Maybe I'll review the film someday?

Favorite Scene Friday!

If you need a little more Bill Murray in your life, you're in luck. Our FSF poll closed this morning with scenes featuring the actor as the winner, so every Friday in March we'll be bringing you a piece of Mr. Murray. Thanks to all who voted!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Music Video Monday! Dire Straits: "Money For Nothing"

We've given you some very '80s music videos before but I present to you - in my opinion, anyway - the most '80s music video of them all. A synthy sound, early computer animation and neon rotoscoping (is there anything more '80s than neon rotoscoping?) combine to make "Money for Nothing" so '80s that you'll poop a John Hughes film after watching it. I seem to recall watching this video a lot when I was younger. I think it spoke to me because, yes, I did want MTV, my money for nothing, and chicks for free. And my microwave oven, refrigerator, and color TV moving business really got in the way of that.

The Wikipedia entry on this song and video is an interesting and informative read if you have a minute. For instance, I actually did not know that was Sting providing backup vocals. Also, Dire Straits singer and songwriter Mark Knopfler was initially not a fan of the idea for this music video - in fact, he wasn't a fan of music videos at all.

So that's Music Video Monday for this week, folks. I'll leave you with a little more rotoscoping, the trailer for 2006's A Scanner Darkly.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Favorite Scene Friday! The War of the Roses: The Gloves Are Off

If you're like me, you've had your fill of sappiness this week.  I don't hate Valentine's Day, but it does seem like overkill - especially for those of us plugged into the world of social media.  Now that the week is nearing its end, I thought I would provide a scene to restore some balance for those of us stuffed so full of love, we're ready to throw it all up.  For this, I give you a movie not necessarily about hate, which is clearly the opposite of love, but about just how thin the line between love and hate can be. 

In The War of the Roses, Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner play Oliver and Barbara Rose, a successful couple who have built a life together, raised two children and sent them off to college, and are now ready to live out their remaining days in marital bliss.  Or, are they?  When Barbara decides she doesn't want to be married to Oliver anymore, she lets him know very matter of factly.  The funny part is that her realization comes in the midst of his heart attack scare.  As she tells him, she felt so free when she thought he was dead.  It's only then that the hard part really begins.  Neither of them is willing to leave the house.  So they begin, in the most hilarious of ways, to completely ruin each other.

Here we see the two characters in the midst of their destruction.  Barbara has thrown a lovely dinner party for her clients.  What is Oliver to do but ruin the evening for everyone?  His antics even include urinating on the main course.  The scene below shows what happens next.  If you've never seen this gem, I ask that you check out the trailer before viewing the scene.  It's hilarious and sums up the story of Oliver and Barbara, and I feel like it provides the right setting for the scene.  While this might seem like a bummer of a post, I can assure you, this movie is one of a kind.  And, put in the right perspective, you'll laugh out loud at how far two people who once vowed to love and protect each other will go to take one another down.  And, even if you don't think that, you'll still get to see a good dose of Kathleen Turner at her hottest.  Purrrrrrr.  Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Now Hear This!: BE THE VOID

It’s always a good thing when I’ve listened to an album for a week and a half straight and I’m not tired of it. So if you’re done giving the aloof Lana Del Ray a chance, I urge you to jump on board the Dr. Dog train because BE THE VOID is just the palette cleanser you’re looking for. It’s no secret that I’ve expressed my love for this band in the past and at some point it’s just realistic to think that I’m in for a painful let down. Well good for us, we’ll have to keep waiting. The band that brought you Easy Beat, We All Belong, Fate and Shame, Shame,*** delivers once again. I didn’t think it would be possible to continue this run of excellence, but BE THE VOID has everything fans love about this band, the soulful 60’s & 70’s sound, crowd chants, harmonies and it's all done with just the right pinch of quirk. With all that being said, I promise that this won’t be a fanboy review. These guys are the real deal and if you give them a listen I think you’ll agree.

“Lonesome”, one of my favorites, kicks it off. It’s a chugging, chanting song. No doubt, with just the right amount of background “Hey!”, this will be a concert favorite. The song showcases one of the best lines of the album, “And I had my fill of the whippoorwill, when he broke into song I shot him.” I guess I like it because some days I just feel like that.The pace stays up beat with the lead single, “That Old Black Hole”. If you missed it last week, they performed this song on Conan. It was a typical Dr. Dog performance. Never seen them live? I suggest you do, it’s a must. See Conan performance below.

Another gem is “These Days”. It’s a fast paced, 2 minutes and 47 seconds, that sounds a lot like The Strokes, without the Casablancas' sound. I can’t wait to hear this performed live. “How Long Must I Wait?” slows things down just a bit. As usual, Scott McMicken makes you feel the song with lines such as, “I walk with you everywhere I go, but it don’t seem like you know” and later he pleads, “how long must I wait?” “Get Away” builds slowly into an Arcade Fire - esque group harmony, minus 3 or 4 members and a guy running around with a helmet on. Before you go gettin' all, “oh no he didn’t” on me and really I’m just talking to Tiff, I’m a fan of Arcade Fire.

“Do the Trick”, I have one word, cowbell. This one’s a funky jam about finding love or at least finding someone to do the trick at that moment. “Vampire” brings some respect back to the undead. It’s a track about a bloodsucking woman who “destroys all that’s good here at your will.” Speaking of vampires, “Heavy Light” has a bit of a Vampire Weekend sound done Dr. Dog style. If you like keyboards, this track’s for you. “Big Girl” isn’t a favorite. I would’ve rather seen the bonus track, “Control Yourself” here instead. However, it wouldn't work in this spot because as another Dr. Dog fan pointed out to me, "it would mess up the back and forth between Toby(Leaman) and Scott." With flow still intact, check out the video for "Control Yourself" below.

“Over Here, Over There” is another love song with some great lyrics like, “Me and you, two continuous waves. So let us fill the air. We are over here. We’re over there.” “Warrior Man”, my least favorite track on the album, has a pretty cool sound, but misses on the lyrics. I just don’t get it. “Turning the Century” closes the album in true Dr. Dog introspective fashion. There are three bonus tracks. I’ve mentioned “Control Yourself”, but there's also “Exit for Sale” and “What a Fool”. All are quality tracks that very easily would’ve fit into the vibe of the album.

If you go digital and like what you hear, I recommend getting the vinyl too. It includes lyrics and a sweet color. The one, I actually bought for Tiff but is currently in my possession, is blue with red and black specks. For some reason, the album sounds even better as I watch the blue vinyl spin on the turntable. I hope you find something to love on BE THE VOID and if you already have, then you know what I mean by this, “You keep sayin’ nobody cares if I’m here, except me, well baby that’s enough”.

*** Although I really dig “Mystery to Me” and “I Can’t Fly”, Toothbrush was just too raw and lo-fi for my taste.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Favorite Scene Friday! Poll

We run a little feature called Favorite Scene Friday!– you may have heard of it. It’s pretty simple - every Friday we post one of our favorite scenes and provide a little commentary. We’ve been running the feature for a while now and we’ve even started having some guests share favorite scenes of their own. Ruth from"....let's be splendid about this..." offered up a scene last month, and just this past Friday Alex from And So it Begins...shared one as well.

For Halloween last year we shared some of our favorite horror scenes and December gifted the blogosphere with some holiday gems. A themed batch of Favorite Scene Fridays will start showing up on a semi-regular basis, and we’re starting with next month. We need your help though. That poll down there will decide the theme of Favorite Scene Friday!, so please take a minute to provide your vote before 10:00 a.m. on Friday the 24th. You’ll be doing the Hatch a courtesy – and we all win when you do the Hatch a courtesy.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Music Video Monday! Whitney Houston: Another Gift Gone Too Soon.

We don’t know the full story yet and it really doesn’t matter because forty-eight is way too young for anyone to pass. This isn’t going to be a big tribute, but I would like to share my fondest Whitney Houston memory. Back in the day while growing up in Illinois, our parents would allow us to have dances down in their basements. Hearing some of her songs over the past two days has taken me back to those dances and for that I just want to say thank you Whitney for getting me close to some of my earliest puppy loves. I didn’t create this compilation, but I’m glad somebody did. Hope you enjoy and may she rest in peace

Friday, February 10, 2012

Favorite Scene Friday! Adaptation.

Alex from And So it Begins...dropped by the Escape Hatch to share one of his favorite scenes with us, a great piece from Spike Jonze's Adaptation.

When not reviewing practically every new release and spotlighting great, oftentimes under appreciated actors in his In Character feature, Alex shares some of his own favorite scenes. You can follow him on Twitter at @shiftingPersona.

The opening scene of Adaptation. is a combination of the two things I hate most in movies: extended opening credits, and narration. Leave it to Spike Jonze and Charlie Kaufman (and, of course, Nicolas Cage) to make something that should be so bad, anything but.

The first two minutes of Adaptation. represent one of the greatest film openings of recent memory. Its minimalist approach (an off-camera monologue against a black screen with Courier credits), tells you everything you need to know about the film’s main character, Charlie Kaufman. It perfectly encapsulates his thought process, lack of humor and pathos better than any on-screen rant possibly could.

The monologue (which, for the record, is arguably the funniest part of a very, very funny movie) has nothing whatsoever to do with the film’s plot. Yet, at the same time, it has everything to do with it. Ingenious.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Batch o’ Hatch: The Walking Dead at Sun-Ray Cinema, The Florida Film Festival, and The Warren Files

The Walking Dead at Sun-Ray Cinema

We’ve written about Sun-Ray Cinema before and we’ve written about The Walking Dead before, but now we’re writing about both at the same time? Man, what next? That’s right, on Sunday, February 12th at 9:00 p.m., Jacksonville’s Sun-Ray Cinema is screening The Walking Dead season 2.5 premiere, and they’re screening it for free. I’m there. 

TWD has had a weird run so far. The first season was incredibly hyped and then – for me anyway – failed to deliver. Then the writing staff was fired and Frank Darabont left the scene, only for the second season – again, in my humble opinion – to actually turn out pretty good so far. I’m excited to check out Rick, Daryl, and the rest of the gang split some zombie skulls on a big screen.

The Florida Film Festival

In other news, the Florida Film Festival is creeping back up. I went last year – this was before The Hatch opened, mind you – and caught Troll Hunter, Hesher, and Super. I ended up reviewing all three of those and they were some of the first reviews I ever posted on the blog.

Films for the fest – which is April 13th-22nd in Orlando – will be announced on March 21st and I’m hoping for some gems. I had a good time last year, and I’m really hoping the rest of the EH Team can join me for a little family vacation.  

The Warren Files

So last week I read on JoBlo that Insidious 2 is indeed happening. Writer Leigh Whannell is returning but director James Wan isn’t locked in yet. This could be because he’s set to direct a flick called The Warren Files, formerly The Conjuring. According to various articles from JoBlo and Arrow in the Head (hey, here’s one now), the film will revolve around real-life paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren and their investigation into supernatural happenings at the Perron family home in Rhode Island in the 1970s.

So I did a little research of my own. What I found very interesting – and what isn't mentioned in the JoBlo and Arrow in the Head articles – is that Ed and Lorraine Warren are the very same duo that investigated the real-life Amityville Horror case. 

Holy shit. For a while there I thought that maybe The Warren Files was going to be some quasi reboot (again) of The Amityville Horror, but the family at the center of the AH case was the Lutz, not the Perrons, and the Amityville house was in New York, not Rhode Island. I searched for the Perron family to try and get some more information and what I found was quite the creepy tale. From the Burrillville, Rhode Island Wikipedia page:

“From the Throat of the World Mountain area of Burrillville comes a very well known New England legend of a witch named Bethesda Sherman who, according to the legend, sacrificed her infant child as an offering to Dovahkiin (???), then hung herself in her barn. The story says that prior to her hanging Bethesda, a known practicing witch, placed a curse on anyone that would take her land/farm. More than two dozen mysterious deaths took place on the lands since the purported curse was made. In the 1970's a family named Perron moved into the Sherman farmhouse. There are numerous reports and eyewitness accounts of supernatural phenomenon that took place while the Perron's lived in the home, physical attacks by the spirit of the witch on the Perron family and an attempted demonic possession of the mother, Carolyn Perron, by the spirit of the witch. Famed paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren investigated the case and aided the Perron family in their fight against this demonic entity.”

Spooky, no? And this story isn’t even listed on the Warren’s Wikipedia page. A few others are, however, and I’m wondering if Wan – who’s clearly a fan of sequels – has half a mind to make a franchise out of the Warren’s adventures. Hopefully we at least get the story about the werewolf demon…

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Music Video Monday (On Tuesday)! OK Go: Here It Goes Again

Does anyone remember a cool little indie band that came on the scene out of Chicago a few years ago with a song that was really fun and a music video for said song that was even MORE fun???  Yep.  Me too.  Weren't those the days?

If you were one of the millions of viewers tuning into the Superbowl on Sunday night, you may have seen a commercial with the members of OK Go in a neat little Chevy driving into a bunch of instruments, all while the song Needing/Getting (from their latest album) plays in the background.  I have to admit - the concept sounded like it could be cool.  But the delivery?  It was a let down.  As was the last video I saw these boys create - for none other than The Today Show (owned by one of the biggest corporate conglomerates in the entire world).  In case you're wondering why that's relevant, OK Go has somehow made such a practice of creating quirky little videos that they've gained corporate sponsors.  I don't want to play the "sell out" card here, but I'm afraid I must.  This is because while the weird video-making niche they've found has been a success for them, the quality of their music has suffered greatly. 

Given that this is the Monday Tuesday after the Superbowl, I thought I would take a moment to honor OK Go when they were new and pure and fun and pretty talented.  Today's video is for the band's first American hit, "Here It Goes Again."  The video is not just fun to watch - it's pretty amazing technically.  The routine was choreographed by a sister of one of the band members.  The best thing about it?  It was all done in one single, continuous take. 

Happy Tuesday, folks!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Favorite Scene Friday: The Script Reads Me.

For this week’s FSF, I’ve chosen one of Ben Stiller’s funnier movies (he’s either hit or miss in my book), Tropic Thunder.  Stiller’s not in the scene, but then again, he’s not needed.  Robert Downey, Jr. is the reason this scene makes the cut.  He gave a downright awesome, hilarious performance in this movie and this scene takes the cake.  When I saw it in the theater I laughed out loud so hard that I believe I embarrassed my girlfriend.  She literally had to ask me what I thought was so funny in this scene.  I know she was focused on the dialogue, which is good, but what gets me every time is RDJ’s facial expressions, particularly around the 0:41 mark.  I’ve often wondered if RDJ thought he messed up in the scene simply because the expression seems ad-libbed.  It just seems too perfectly funny to be written out on paper.  Regardless, I’m glad Stiller kept it in the film because I still laugh out loud after RDJ’s tirade and his facial reaction resulting from it.  Hope this one makes you laugh and leads you into a kick-ass Super Bowl Weekend.  GO PATS!