VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Imaginaerum (2012)

Clio & Carolyn: 2.8/5 stars, 6.4/10.
Native ratings: 5.7/10 IMDB. Not available on Netflix.

This will be the 2nd time we watch a movie based on a concept album we’ve never listened to, performed by a band we’ve never listened to. The last one was Marillion:Brave, by Richard Stanley, director of the movie Hardware (1990). This one is based on an album by the Finnish metal band, NightWish. We mostly watched it for the visuals, which were pretty cool, but we were not as impressed as we were hoping.

The story was a bit lacking. The sound mix was surprisingly bad (though that is a distribution problem). It was overly-dramatic and kind of full of itself. But of course, it’s a video for an album, and music videos are sorta-kinda SUPPOSED to be like that — all grandiose and shit. So I might be faulting the genre for its own self-definition here. It also got a lot less exciting (and a lot more depressing) near the end. The acting wasn’t the greatest, but this also wasn’t a movie with very much acting in it.

In the end, this was style over substance. Some pretty awesome visuals. Definitely a great movie to watch — not as great to listen to, or think about. But visually, it was an 8/10.

Directed by: Stobe Harju (who directed Nightwish’s “The Islander” music video).
Written by: Stobe Harju & Mikko Rautalahti (Alan Wake video game), and Richard Jackson.
Story written by Tuomas Holopainen (Nightwish songwriter and band member) & Stobe Harju.

Starring Marianne Farley (Undressed, 2001: A Space Travesty, 6 eps of Vampire High) as Gem Whitman.
Quinn Lord (young boy in The Imaginarium Of Doctor Parnassus–is he now typecast to only be in movies with Imaginae?rium in their title?, 2 eps of Smallville) as Tom Whitman – age 10.
Tuomas Holopainen (Nightwish song writer and band member) as Tom Whitman – age 47.
Francis X. McCarthy (BASEketball, 7 eps of Melrose Place, 4 eps of the original 21 Jump Street, Alien Nation, 2 eps of The Greatest American Hero, 1 ep of Smallville, 1 ep of Cheers, 1 ep of ALF, 1 ep of The A-Team, 1 ep of Parker Lewis Can’t Lose) as Tom Whitman – age 70.
Joanna Noyes (Grandma Thora Read in Arthur) as Ann – age 73.
Anette Olzon (Nightwish band member) as Ann.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1959409/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Rock Of Ages (2012)

Clio: 2.6/5 stars, 5.4/10.
Carolyn: 4.6/5 stars, 8.6/10.
Native ratings: 3.0/5 stars Netflix, 5.8/10 IMDB.

Wow! Carolyn and me rating 2.0/5 stars apart from each other (Netflix), and 2.2/10 apart from each other (IMDB). I think that is a top-1% disagreement level; we’re never this far off from each other!

This movie actually failed to keep me engaged. The plot was so thin that once it became “just people singing songs” with 5 minutes of song to every 30 seconds of plot, I began to grow bored, which then made me tired, which made me fall asleep, which made me have to take a break to wake up just to get through the movie.

A musical needs at least some plot. Not a huge amount. Just something more tangible than what we had here. Repo:The Genetic Opera, Sweeney Todd, Nightmare Before Christmas, the South Park movie, Rocky Horror Picture Show. All of these have more engaging plots. Yes, even Rocky Horror! In the end this was just too random, I didn’t care about the characters enough to care about the movie, and it started to feel like an extended music video of old songs sung by celebrities instead of the original artists. I was waiting for it to be over, and was happy when it was.

Any given moment was kinda awesome, and Tom Cruise was great… The whole cast was… But it was just too devoid of story for me. It was too much. Maybe I would have enjoyed a shorter version (I did watch the extended version, after all). It’s totally out of character for me to say that, though.

Maybe on a different night, with a different mood and body chemistry, I would have enjoyed this more. Dunno if I’ll ever be able to make myself try it again, though. Life’s too short.

Carolyn adds: I enjoyed this movie.  I didn’t love it quite as much as Take Me Home Tonight, but I had fun watching it… They did have a lot of songs, and barely any plot, but it was more the ride than the story for me, I guess.

My mom adds: I saw this on an airplane, a captive audience. I must admit that I lean towards Clio‘s opinion.

Parthena, who recommended this to us (but didn’t rate it high?!) adds:  I would rate this 3/5 stars myself! For all the reasons you listed. Very loose plot…like they couldn’t decide which story to focus on. But some parts made me laugh.

 

People-wise:
Co-written by the writer of Tropic Thunder & Iron Man 2.
The main girl is Julianne Hough (uncredited role in Harry Potter 1, Footloose remake).
Diego Boneta (Mean Girls 2)
Russell Brand (Despicable Me, Get Him To The Greek, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, St. Trinian’s)
Alec Baldwin (Dr. Seuss’ The Cat In The Hat, 5 episodes of Clerks-TAS, Beetlejuice)
Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad, Malcolm In The Middle, 6 episodes of The Cleveland Show, Jim Gordon in Batman: Year One)
Catherine Zeta-Jones (Ocean’s Twelve, Titanic, The Mask Of Zorro)
Paul Giamatti (John Dies At The End, The Hangover Part II, The Haunted World Of El Superbeasto, Sideways, Man On The Moon, Saving Private Ryan, Lady In The Water)
Kevin Nash (wrestler)
Tom Cruise (Knight And Day, Mission: Impossible, Magnolia, Eyes Wide Shut, Minority Report, Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles, Days Of Thunder)
Malin Akerman (Childrens Hospital, The Giant Mechanical Man, Wanderlust, Watchmen, The Brothers Solomon, Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle)
Will Forte (5 episodes of Gravity Falls, 5 episodes of American Dad, Saturday Night Live, 19 episodes of The Cleveland Show, Tim And Eric‘s Billion Dollar Movie, Tim And Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!, Sit Down Shut Up, Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs, Fanboys, The Brothers Solomon, Clone High
Eli Roth (writer of Cabin Fever, Hostel)
T.J. Miller (Robbie in Gravity Falls, Seeking A Friend For The End Of The World, Gulliver’s Travels, How To Train Your Dragon, Get Him To The Greek, Cloverfield
Debbie Gibson
Sebastian Bach (Skid Row)

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1336608/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Detroit Rock City (1999)

Clio: 5/5 stars, 9/10.
Carolyn: 5/5 stars, 9/10.
Native ratings: 3.9/5 stars Netflix (Netflix is down right now, sorry), 6.6/10 IMDB.

Oh my “Bob” did this movie hold up to a second viewing!!

Carolyn actually had no recollection of it, even though she knew she’s seen it.
Clio had only the vaguest recollection — maybe 5 seconds of total information.

This is pretty much exactly what I want from a comedy movie! It’s just full of awesomeness. The soundtrack, the cast (nexus movie alert! lots of people), the plot, the fact that it deals with “heavy” music, the nostalgic 1970s setting, the crazy capers that happen to them, the girls, the splitting stories that re-converge. This is a fun “night on the town” caper movie! A classic! A must-see!

Suburban high school rockers are on a quest to make sure they get to the Kiss concert in Detroit. I don’t like Kiss, but I respect them for selling out and milking it as much as possible, and would do the exact same thing if I were in their position.

Directed by Adam Rifkin (he wrote & directed National Lampoon’s The Stoned Age).
Written by Carl V. Dupre (he wrote 2 of the direct-to-video Hellraiser movies).

Starring Giuseppe Andrews as Lex (Deputy Winston from Cabin Fever, Pleasantville, Independence Day, Homo Erectus aka The Stoned Age).
James DeBello as Trip (Dorm Daze, Cabin Fever, Scary Movie 2, 100 Girls, enthusiastic guy in American Pie).
Edward Furlong as Hawk (John Connor in Terminator 2, Pecker from Pecker, The Crow in The Crow 4, The Green Hornet).
Sam Huntington as Jam (Fanboys, Jimmy Olsen in Superman Returns, Not Another Teen Movie).
Lin Shaye as Mrs. Bruce, the bitchy mom (Nurse Crotchet in 2012 The Three Stooges, Snakes On A Plane, Dumb And Dumber, Contagion, Kingpin).
Melanie Lynskey as Beth (Seeking A Friend For The End Of The World, Becky in The Life & Times Of Tim, The Informant!, Coyote Ugly, But I’m A Cheerleader).
Natasha Lyonne as Christine (American Pie 1/2/Reunion, Kate & Leopold, Scary Movie 2, But I’m A Cheerleader).
I didn’t even notice Emmanuelle Chriqui as Christine’s friend Barbara (Paige in Tron:Uprising, Cheetara in the 2010s Thundercats, You Don’t Mess with the Zohan, The Crow 4, Wrong Turn, Waiting 1 & 2). (“Girl #1” was in Wrong Turn too.)
Also Ron Jeremy. Because he just shows up in things. Often enough that I have a screenshot from a movie that includes someone I know (Reverend Morgan Proctor) AND Ron Jeremy. He must get around a lot :)
And Shannon Tweed.
And oh! The cashier? Who wants Dr. Love to come back after saving her? Kristin Booth! I didn’t know who she was until I looked it up… She’s the voice of Parker in the Producing Parker. So frickin’ weird! She was also in Defendor and Young People Fucking.
Speaking of Defendor… One of the priests in this movie was Grandpa Henry in Defendor. The other one was in Slackers and Stripes.
Hehe…Chongo was in Gothika and Resident Evil:Apocalypse.

This movie is just weird. A lot of people were in other things we’ve seen. Maybe we’ve just watched a lot of movies.

“Beefy Jerk #1” was in Seven Psychopaths, which we JUST watched. He was also in The Dictator, Pineapple Express, Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist, Registered Sex Offender, Superbad.

Beefy Jerk #2!??! Is Bobby ‘Bacala’ Baccalieri from The Sopranos! The guy who kinda took care of Junior. He was also in Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas. I didn’t notice any of this. Just a testament to how much of a nexus this movie is…

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0165710/combined

VIDEO: MOVIE: REVIEW: Rock ‘n’ Roll High School (1979)

Clint: 4/5 stars, 7.4/10.
Carolyn: 3.6/5 stars, 7/10.
Native ratings: 3.8/5 stars (Netflix guessed 4.1 for us), 6.7/10.

An exception to our usual focus on modern offerings.

This movie had funny moments, and the Ramones were fun.  It was very much what people would think of as a stereotypical 1980’s highschool/teen-comedy movie. Except it had The Ramones in it, which is something few other movies can boast.

Most of the main characters in this movie still have acting careers today, which is a change compared to most b-movies. As for the “Riff Vs. Kate” debate, It’s almost a tie. Riff’s clavicle is the tiebreaker. I want to see cleavage, not Skeletor. Kate wins.

Interesting that CBS censors mentions of DDT in Teenage Lobotomy when this movie airs on TV, but cocaine and swastikas are just fine. Can’t mess with Monansanto!

And how the fuck are they remaking this? I guess this movie could be remade for every band out there that has a fandom, but it’s never going to be something as seminal as the fucking RAMONES!

It will probably still be better than the sequel I just found out about – Rock ‘N’ Roll High School Forever (1992) – staring Corey Feldman (feat Mojo Nixon). Or the 2nd sequel, Shake, Rattle and Rock! (1994), starring Renee Zellweger and Howie Mandel (feat Paul Anka). God help us all.

At least the 3rd one has some of the original characters and actors from the first one (including P.J. Soles).

Still though — good times!

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0079813

MUSIC: METAL: DEATHS: GWAR frontman Dave Brockie — aka ‘Oderus Urungus’ — found dead in Richmond, Va., home: police

First Peter Steele, now this.

Nothing to remind you that you’ve entered middle age like having all your bands slowly drop dead.

I guess if Holliston is renewed, they won’t have Oderus on every episode either.

I guess these GWAR songs I’m learning for future concerts… Will only ever be heard inside my house?

This sucks.

LINK URL: http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/music-arts/gwar-founder-dave-brockie-found-dead-richmond-va-home-article-1.1731787

MUSIC VIDEO: Neosignal – Planet Online (Official Video)

This is NOT a band or music I listen to.

This is a video that stands on its own awesomeness — Basically, all of the popular aspects of the internet represented as 1990s toy commercials.

Pretty awesome.

This is great. Some assembly required.

Thanks Alan M!

LINK URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QnhPMdIsOBc&feature=youtu.be

MUSIC: Slayer Guitarist Jeff Hanneman Dead at 49 | Billboard

Moment of silence for one of the best guitarists to ever grace metaldom. :/

LINK URL: http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/1560534/slayer-guitarist-jeff-hanneman-dead-at-49