VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: The Crow 3: Salvation (2000)

Clint: 3.6/5 stars, 7.3/10.
Carolyn: 3/5 stars, 7/10.
Native ratings: 3.3/5 stars Netflix, 4.6/10 IMDB.

With a rating as low as 4.6/10, I was expecting something very poor. But the IMDB rating for The Crow 3 is actually higher than The Crow 2. And this actually wasn’t so terrible after expecting so little. It kind of picked up more at the end. Kirsten Dunst didn’t hurt, either. Though Eric Mabius was a really strange choice for “badass Crow dude”. He was Dawn Weiner’s boyfriend in Welcome To The Dollhouse, and was in Splendor, Cruel Intentions, and Resident Evil.

Spoiler alert: The big turnaround for this movie is that the bad guys [spoiler]are actually the cops[/spoiler].

Notable soundtrack for me (Rob Zombie, Danzig, Static X covering Ministry).

Carolyn adds: I had low expectations, and throughout the movie, it wasn’t terrible, but I was thinking it was only 6/10 material, but then near the ending I upped my rating.

It wasn’t that special, and I guess the plot was somewhat convenient.  (Spoilers:  like how the only way the bad guys could win was to take away the crow’s powers, so they conveniently knew the specific way to take away his powers…  that seemed a little contrived to me.  I don’t remember the second Crow movie that well.  Maybe there were hints in the previous two movies that would explain how these bad guys knew so much about what they were dealing with.  /spoilers)

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0132910/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Paranormal Activity 4 (2012)

Clint/Carolyn: 4.4/5 stars, 8.4/10.
Native ratings: 3.8/5 stars Netflix, 4.4/10 IMDB (wtf?!).

Wow. Really low IMDB rating compared to Netflix. Just shows the legions of assholes that downvote any sequel or adaptation (or film starring hated actors). Yet, this seems to be better than Paranormal Activity 3…. But not as good as Paranormal 2. Where PA2 went further back in time than PA1, but concluded after the end of PA2; and PA3 took place completely in the past; PA4 takes place several years after the events of PA1/2. In effect, it’s almost like a second chapter to the story, as the only living family member left from the original movies is the baby (now age 6-8 or so).  I was hoping for more Katie, though it is not a Katie-less movie.

Funny thing: Carolyn’s hearing range does not include the high-pitched demon-speech sound. Clint had to tell Carolyn when the demon was speaking. That actually made it creepier.

Anyway, Carolyn in particular thought this installment lacked some of the spookiness of the previous ones…It didn’t give me the same creeped out feeling…Even PA2 caused Carolyn to sleep on our foofsack because she was too scared to be in the bedroom alone without me. This one didn’t.

Also, they barely talked about the witches’ coven… and they didn’t really explain how Hunter ended up being adopted, and who the hell Robbie was (other than a random kid who lived nearby)?  Not many answers.

BTW, the main girl in this movie is 15 and was in Bad Teacher, which we just watched… But I still didn’t recognize her.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2109184/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: CARTOONS: REVIEW: Frankenweenie (2012)

Clint: 4.6/5 stars, 8.4/10.
Carolyn: 5/5 stars, 9/10.
Native rating: 4/5 stars Netflix, 7.2/10 IMDB.

All Tim Burton is good (except for his Planet Of The Apes sequel), but some Tim Burton is better than other Tim Burton. For example, Nightmare Before Christmas is better than Corpse Bride.  This one was good, but not his top-notch work. It was good to finally see his 1984 short developed into a full length Frankestein homage feature.

I’m not sure if I’ve seen 1080p black-and-white stop-motion-animation before, it was certainly an interesting look, though I will always prefer the world of color to the world of black-and-white. It did help make the Frankenstein homage more accurate.

Carolyn: Yeah, I thought it would have been better in color, but I guess the black and white was a throwback to black and white horror movies…  I thought this was better than Corpse Bride, but not as good as Nightmare Before Christmas.  I was sad they didn’t find a way to save Mr. Whiskers.  Poor Mr. Whiskers.

Clint: MR. WHISKERS WAS A CUNT

Carolyn: HE WAS A VICTIM OF CIRCUMSTANCE!

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1142977/?ref_=sr_1

VIDEO: MOVIE: REVIEW: ParaNorman (2012)

Clint: 3.4/5 stars, 7.7/10.
Carolyn: 3.4/5 stars, 7/10.
Native rating: 3.8/5 stars Netflix, 7.2/10 IMDB.

Stop-motion animation, but sometimes augmented by cgi. Definitely had a distinct look, which is a rarer thing with American animated movies these days.
Visual wise this was probably 8-9/10.

Story-wise, it wasn’t super, but at least it was dark. Kid can talk to ghosts. Everyone makes fun of him. But then a curse hits the town, and his skill becomes relevant.

This felt like something along the lines of Coraline, but not quite as creepy. Definitely a good halloween movie to see. Stop-motion isn’t dead!

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1623288/

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Dungeons & Dragons 3: The Book Of Vile Darkness (2012) (TV)

3/5 stars, 6/10 from both of us.
Native ratings: 3.0/5 stars Netflix, 4.0/10 IMDB.

One of my criticisms was going to be that this seemed like it was a Made-for-TV movie… But then I found out that it was, so… Yeah. That.

This was actually pretty good, given how bad the first Dungeons & Dragons actual-A-movie was. Apparently these movies are getting slightly better. But still made-for-TV drek in the eyes of most people.

The zombie girl in the forest was awesome. And Eleanor Gecks is beautiful, though her character’s tattoos looked like someone just drew it on her face with Sharpies.

This could have been worse. Probably not recommended for people who aren’t already into fantasy and D&D-type stuff, though.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1733125/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: The Giant Mechanical Man (2012)

Clint: 2.8/5 stars, 5.9/10.
Carolyn: 4/5 stars, 7.6/10.
Native ratings: 3.3/5 stars (Netflix), 6.1/10 (IMDB).

It was a chick flick. There wasn’t really any comedy.  A few awkward situations, a few *actors* that are usually funny (Jenna Fischer, Malin Akerman, Bob Odenkirk, Topher Grace, Lucy Punch), but the plot wasn’t funny.

It was mostly depressing, with a love story to defeat the depression of the pointlessness of life.

The “mechanical man” gimmick didn’t really do much for me, pretty much felt like a MacGuffin.

By the end of the movie, I felt very happy for the main characters, but sad that I’d tricked myself into watching something so lacking in laughs.

This is well done. And it’s not bad. It’s just not my cup of tea.

P.S. Lucy Punch PLEASE dye your hair back to red like in Bad Teacher, kthxbye.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1769363/?ref_=fn_al_tt_2

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Video Game High School (2012)

Carolyn: 5/5 stars, 9/10.
Clint: 4/5 stars, 8/10.
Native rating: 7.7/10 IMDB (Not available on Netflix).

First off, this is actually a TV series of short episodes repacked into a movie. It feels way more movie-like than I expected from that description. The episode cuts are not as jarring as one would think; I didn’t notice most of them as being different. If you had told me it was a  movie from the start, I would have believed it.

So anyway, you could call this an alternate-earth movie, where videogames are everything, and you go to college to get better at video games. And if you lose too many matches, you get expelled for having bad game winning stats. Throw in a romantic angle (a must in any college comedy?), a bully (who’s power comes from his videogame prowess), and you get a pretty interesting movie… If you’re a gamer.

It reminded Carolyn of Todd And The Book Of Evil on a few fronts (high school, crush on girl named Jenny, redhed geekier girl who gets with 2nd friend and may actually be hotter than Jenny), though the subject matter really was nothing like it, and I would say something like the movie John Dies At The End reminds me more of Todd And The Book Of Evil.

Johanna Braddy was in the Avatar:The Last Airbender cartoon and in Paranormal Activity 3.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2170584/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1