Total Recall (2012)

Total Recall (2012) – 1 Out of 5 Graves

This movie has the dishonorable distinction of being the first 1 Out of 5 I’ve given. I write this in a cold rage, angry that I wasted time watching this movie. The original was so much better, even if the special effects have shown through with the years.

Reasons 2012 Version Sucked:

  1. The dialogue and the action were so fast it was hard to follow.
  2. The action is so twitchy and fast it was impossible to enjoy.
  3. They fought so hard to make this one different than the first version that they just screwed it up. The part with the tear versus the drop of sweat really bothered me between the two versions.
  4. What the hell was with the giant tunnel through the earth? Oh yeah, another example of how they screwed it up compared to the original. People commute every day up and down that?
  5. There were too many scenes with Kate Beckinsale that looked like they were taken right out her vampire movies. The way she runs and jumps and lands in a crouch. I love those movies, but her action scenes gave me flashbacks to the Underworld movies.
  6. The tattoo on his wrist at the end. This was the absolute worst. I hate the “trick” endings

In summary I don’t think the remake was well thought out or well executed. Which is a shame. There were so many great actors in it.

The bad version:

The good version:

Dead Air (2009)

Dead Air (4 out of 5 Graves)

I somehow missed this little gem back in 2009 but my brother was kind enough to send me a copy. If you like the zombie genre, you will appreciate “Dead Air”.  The dice were rolling in my head after I saw it-two, four, two, four. Which one did it land on and why?

Obviously I gave it the four. Let me know if you think I was too generous. The movie was well paced, true to itself, and had a decent ending.

Now we’ll talk about the spoilers and why it might have been a two…

There really isn’t too much that is terribly new here. A virus turns people into monsters, and it is unleashed for political purposes. The normal series of events happen, but each of them is well acted.

The end is, well, exactly what you expect for this genre. It is slightly open to interpretation, and I chose to believe the dose of anti virus he got will save the main character.

So, why if it was pretty standard fair was it a four and not a two? I think the credit for that goes to Bill Moseley as Logan.  He basically carries the film with his story telling ability as he talks on air throughout the whole movie.


Dance of the Dead (2008)

Dance of the Dead  (3 Out of 5 Graves)

I picked this up on the discount rack and set it aside for a Friday night movie with my two older boys. They have a habit of groaning whenever I pick movies, but I tricked them by giving them the choice between this and “Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same”. The picked the zombie movie.

Needless to say, with my long history of movie picking skills expectations were not quite that high, but this movie helped redeem myself just a little. It was a solid entry in the genre of “campy zombie” flick. Some of the other reviews compared it to Zombieland, which its not even close to, but still, it was fun to watch.

The good…

  • Well done special effects.
  • An actual story! There was an actual plot to follow.
  • The dancing/music bit wasn’t overdone. It was just right.
  • Zombie frogs, need I say more?
  • The gun toting C4 packing gym teacher. I think I had him in high school actually.
  • The dork gets to kiss the hottie.
  • The other members of the sci fi club look like they might be getting lucky.

The bad…

  • The hottie was already bitten and bites his tongue off as the dork is kissing her.

Overall a very decent movie in the genre and well worth watching if you like campy zombie flicks. And at the bargain price of six bucks, it was doubly worth watching.

Django Unchained (2012)

Bring on the sh*t storm. This was not the best movie ever made. It was a good movie, a funny movie, but it may have been a bit over-hyped, which set my expectations too high.

There are spoilers below, so if you haven’t seen the movie, you may want to wait. You’ve been warned.

The good:

  • Jamie Foxx and Christoph Waltz make an awesome team. They are both great actors who bring life to every scene they are in.
  • If you like brutal violence tamed with a bit of humor, this movie will keep you happy.
  • The action is done well and is entertaining, there are only a few places when it crosses the border into silly.
  • The love story is actually quite touching between Jamie Foxx and Kerry Washington.

The bad:

  • Christoph Waltz’s Dr. King is supposed to be a hardened bounty hunter, a killer capable of killing men in cold blood (as long as he had a flyer with their picture on it in his pocket) and then put the bodies in his wagon for delivery to the law. But he see’s one person ripped to pieces by a dog and he starts getting flash backs and a suicidal need for vengeance. I’m sorry, but I think Dr. King would have shaken Calvin Candie’s hand and then come back some dark night and put a bullet in him. The way he through his life away felt silly.
  • The gunfight after Dr. King blows away Calvin was awesome to watch, but just a little over the top. I love airsoft, and it just irks me how people are in the open and rounds keep missing them.
  • OMG, was that Jamie’s junk?
  • Quentin Tarantino’s cameo was really bad. Worst fake Australian accent ever.