Monday, October 29, 2012

Blood and guts movie reviews

Japan's economy tanks, unemployment soars, disaffected kids begin to take out their frustrations on adults, especially teachers in the nation's classrooms.  In response, the government passes a law that says kids in unruly classrooms can be herded off to islands and be made to fight one another to the death until there is one kid left standing.  That's the premise of this action packed violent as hell film starring Japanese gangster film icon Beat Takeshi.  He plays the teacher to a particularly horrid set of teenagers who get shipped off to the Battle Royale island.  The kids are given a backpack with a little food and a weapon, some get knives, others get guns, while others may get a pot lid, a taster, or an axe, and they have three days to fight it out and kill one another until only is left.  The kids are repulsed at first but they eventually get into it.  Some form alliances, some of those alliances end up not working due to mistrust and paranoia, and some try to opt out and of course they end up dead.

It's all very violent and the body count in this film is astronomical, but it's all kind of cartoony and unrealistic.  There is a plethora of overacting, Japanese style, in this film, and there's a slew of super cute teenage girls and boys in it too.  I found it all highly enjoyable and perversely fun.  Accept it for what it is, and don't attach deep meanings to it and you'll find it fun too if you like action films.

House of the Devil is a slow as molasses and ultimately really bad almost unwatchable horror film.  I was pre programmed to love this film, it's got many people who I love in it, Tom Noonan, Mary Waranov, Greta Gerwig, Dee Wallace, and it's a horror movie homage to the 1980's horror films I cut my teeth on.  But I fucking hated it.

Why did I hate it?  Here are some of the many reasons:
  • The lead actress was as charismatic and interesting as a fitted sheet.  She was the most bland boring lead in the history of cinema.  She gave made Timothy Dalton's James Bond look like Lawrence Olivier.  Watching paint dry is more exciting and interesting than watching her mope her way through this film.
  • The film was s..............l............o...............w.  Excruciatingly slow.  It clocks in at around an hour and a half but it feels like it's about 6 hours long.
  • They killed off Greta Gerwig way too early.  Once her character died, it felt like they let the air out of this movie.
I could go on and on but I won't.  If they'd cast the lovely Ms. Gerwig as the lead, maybe this turkey could have flown.  But they didn't and this turkey lands with a thud.  Avoid it like you'd avoid an overly handsy relative at a family reunion.  


Kal said...

Battle Royale is what Hunger Games should have been. The Japanese pushed the concept to it's logical conclution.

Dr. MVM said...

I thought the same thing Kal.