MOVIE REVIEW: ‘Slender Man’ – Lean on story, light on Horror

“About as scary as an episode of R.L. Stine’s ‘Goosebumps’”

30-SECOND REVIEW:

It SHOULD be scarier than it is. Unfortch, it is not. It’s about as scary as an episode of R. L. Stine’s ‘Goosebumps’ lol 😛  which is discrediting ‘Goosebumps’ as a fun little fright-fest for young kids. But when your theater had little kids in attendance like mine did, and caused ZERO screams? That ain’t good.

FULL REVIEW

Jay here! So I went and watched ‘Slender Man‘ as part of my other podcast (pulling double-duty, folks!) – check me out at Kill the Dead podcast as well 🙂

Here’s the thing; Urban legends have been around for decades. My favorite being Bloody Mary, where you turn off the lights, face a mirror, and say her name 5x – expecting her to appear. As a kid, that would scare the living daylights out of me! And now, thanks to the internet, urban legends have taken on new life in the form of ‘found footage’ and photos going viral.

That last part is the basis for ‘Slender Man’, the story of a spooky viral internet meme – or ‘creepypasty’ if you will. In today’s world, tricky photography and made up mythology can become part of the social consciousness within days! I’ve seen Slender Man footage on YouTube. It is some truly disturbing shit! Too bad this movie doesn’t hold up to the memes.

Slender Man the movie should be about a modern viral internet boogyeman come to life. Instead it relies on mostly overdone horror themes and borrows ideas from better films: Ouji. The Ring. Sinister. It Follows, Hell, even Nightmare on Elm Street.

There was nothing remotely original nor interesting about this movie. Matter fact, I was WAITING for the girls to die just to get it over with.

How many times do we need to see young girls fall victim to bad ideas? Hasn’t that been done 100x by now? It’s not enough anymore to have teenage girls reciting chants and run around the woods in distress. ‘Cabin in the Woods’ (awesome movie!) put that to rest years ago.

Especially in our current political climate. These girls are mindless throwbacks from 2 generations ago. Completely helpless. Clueless. Incapable. Unable to navigate modern technology outside of texting. Forget ‘Girl Power’… These chicks are horror chowder. At one point the protagonist was more distressed about her makeup than her missing friend. I’m not exaggerating. Very disappointing.

As for scary? fugheddaboutit. The laziest horror tactics are used, and not effectively. Seriously, no one in this movie ever turns on any lights, EVER. How many scenes were done in 90% darkness, simply because no one in this universe bothers to click on a light switch? When your only reliable scare tactic rely on trees and darkness? You’ve already lost.

As crazy as this may sound, the Slender Man movie actually damages the Slender Man internet meme! The movie doesn’t do the legend enough justice. We don’t know anything new about the Slender Man than whatever is found online – is he a shadow person? A wood demon (The Ritual)? An urban legend brought to life (Candyman)? The vengeful spirit of a serial killer (Freddie Krueger)? Does he prey on fears? On the souls of children (Sinister)? We never really know…and I don’t think the filmmakers know either.

There are lots of disturbing creepypasta on YouTube that will keep you up late nights. This movie on the other hand, was a snooze-fest. A whole lot of Not Much happens, and it doesn’t happen fast enough. Maybe if Guillermo del Toro was involved it would at least been interesting to look at. Sadly, no. This didn’t warrant a major motion picture release. It probably would have been MORE effective as a (wait for it) viral internet found footage video

Stick to the original YouTube vids. They are scarier than the movie.

RATING

(out of 5 Slenders)

 

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S1E5 – Top 20 All Time Cartoons!

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MOVIE REVIEW: Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom

“… At this point, Jurassic Park can only mean bigger, badder, and nastier”

30-SECOND REVIEW

It’s dinosaurs! And dinosaurs are awesome 🙂 Plus, its Steven Spielberg! Also, Chris Pratt and Bryce Howard have good chemistry so that helps. The effects are better and the story has a good plot twist.  The movie needed something to do while people are not getting chomped. This delivers!

FULL REVIEW

Jay here! Hard to believe but its been three decades now since the original ‘Jurassic Park’ first roared into theaters (1993!). Here we are 25 years later. Same formula – Humans clone dinosaurs. Humans try to control dinosaurs. Dinosaurs kill humans. It’s worked for 5 movies now and people keep going back to see it. The original magic and mystique are long gone. The only thing keeping this franchise afloat is new ways to eat people. Which means Bigger, Badder, and Nastier!

Zero spoilers, but its we now know that Jurassic Park (the park itself, not the movie lol) was a complete failure! As Dr. Malcolm said in the first movie, ‘some shit Nature decided should NOT go together, like…dinosaurs and humans’ (paraphrasing AF) – Which is why there’s a millions of years GAP between the species? Four sequels, and people still haven’t learned this lesson.

Ironically, Jurassic World (the actual theme park and the movie lol) turned out to be a HUGE success – but that wasn’t good enough. Eventually the dinosaurs escape (of course) and a LOT of people get shredded to bits. The park is officially shut down forever. But damn, what to do with all these dinosaurs?? Part 5 addresses that question, adding a political element plus an entire Dino ‘right to life’ movement, complete with Left-wing ‘sobbyists’ – (see what I did there?) 😛

The Good new is that fan favorites T-Rex and Blue the lovable Velociraptor are back.

Chris Pratt and Bryce Howard return to fuss and flirt. Best of all Jeff Goldblum (yaaay!) returns as Ian Malcolm (my favorite character) famed ‘theoretical chaotician’- If only all too briefly.

Also, the requisite ‘You have no real reason to be here in the first place‘ characters tag along for the scream-fest. Oh BTW, the Jurassic island…the famous Isla Nublar?? Yeaaaah, that volcano is goes all VOLCANO, destroying everything in its path! Time to rescue some Dinosaurs! Or, do we leave them to die by Natural Causes?  See, here we go again…people interfering with Nature! Man plays God. God destroys Man. This is where shit goes bad.

But wait! Sinister plot twist up ahead! And its a juicy one! And it makes the 3rd act of the movie worth all the fuss. And it ensures that there WILL be a Jurassic Part 6.

That, and a $1.2 Billion box office.

*Rawr!*

 

(out of 5 Blue raptors)

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MOVIE REVIEW: Ant-Man and The Wasp! Why it’s a BIG deal for Marvel!

30-SECOND REVIEW:

The small gets tinier and the big gets LARGER when more is at stake! Scott Rudd and company return once again for another action-caper-comedy full of high tech hi-jinks and plenty of laughs! Surprisingly, at it’s core, Ant-Man and Wasp delivers enough heart with a story more about family and redemption along with the heroics. Speaking of heroics, Evangeline Lilly as The Wasp kicks so much ASS! 😀 A perfect summer popcorn movie for all ages to enjoy!

FULL REVIEW:

Pym Particles technology may be the coolest thing in the Marvel Universe! Well, maybe next to Stark Tech – but whatevs! The special effects are abundant and once again Marvel Comics wins the box office! We said years ago that Marvel Studio’s superb story-telling turns D-list, 3rd-string characters and virtual unknowns into household names and box office gold! Ant-Man is a much needed break from all the hardcore Marvel madness of the past few years.

This is where Marvel excels. In between  Ga-zillion dollar epics $$$, Marvel Studios continue to slide in mid-level gems (Doctor Strange, Ant-Man). Every movie doesn’t need to be a home-run, leaving room for character development from lesser known heroes. And with Marvel’s 4,000+ character vault we’ve only begun to scratch the surface!

We’ve had the heroes battle each other. We’ve seen half the universe destroyed by a madman. We were introduced to the hidden kingdom of Wakanda. Ant-Man/Wasp is like a cool dip in the pool during blazing summer heat. Sometimes you just want to relax and enjoy the scenery. And that is exactly what this movie does on every level!

For those who aren’t aware of Ant-Man’s anthology – the ORIGINAL Ant-Man and Wasp (Hank and Janet Pym) are founding members of The Avengers! (yup)

 Their place is solidified in comic book lore. Hank Pym (played by Michael Douglas) is the creator of ‘Pym particles’ – the science behind size manipulation (shrinking AND growing). He, along with his wife (played by….oh, you will see 😉 ) are the original Ant-Man/Wasp team.

The Pym suit was eventually passed on to master thief Scott Lang -Rudd’s character in the movie – so this all lines up perfectly. Part two is more dazzling special effects with creative use of science fiction and technology.

The movie picks up after the events of Captain America: Civil War; Scott Lang is under house arrest by the FBI for his part in the airport fight (hero versus hero…Giant Man …what fun!) and is mere days away from his freedom. At the same time Hank Pym and Hope van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) work on rescuing Janet Pym from the Quantum Universe.

Turns out that Hope has been fully trained as The Wasp- complete with wings AND stingers! – and damn, does she kick SO MUCH ASS in that suit!:D

😀 – Of course, Scott gets sucked back into the fray, being he was the only one to visit the sub-atomic universe and live to tell about it! (the hilariously fun Ant-Man movie). Going along for the ride are Scott’s crew of former prison misfits – Michael Pena, scene stealing once again as the hilarious Luis, and rapper T.I. who holds his own in a superhero movie.

Throw in a over-zealous FBI agent, a black market criminal trying to steal the Pym technology, and a literal ghost from Hank Pym’s past – and what you get is more of what made the original such a fun movie! In the midst of all the non-stop action is a nice Father/Daughter moment. Scott working hard to do the right thing by his young daughter, who sees her reformed criminal dad as a true hero (awwww!).

Fans of Marvel Comics and summer movies should definitely see this! Light on the drama and heavy on the fun, Ant-Man and The Wasp adds more depth and SIZE to the MCU. Also, it ties into the current Marvel story line. As always, stay after the credits. 😉

RATING:

  (out of 5)

 

 

 

 

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