Monthly Archives: June 2013

This is the End

“Man-child pack” really doesn’t roll off the tongue as well as the rat pack or the brat pack, but I’m really not sure how else to describe this group of mostly Goldenberg-ites as of now, so let’s go with it. We’ve got Seth Rogan, James Franco, Jay Baruchel, Craig Robinson, Jonah Hill and Danny McBride together as themselves, during the apocalypse.

Shenanigans ensue.

Shenanigans ensue.

All around, this movie was a good time. This is the End doesn’t try to be anything more than it is – man-children growing up a little. Little social commentary is needed or wanted for that matter. It helps to know a thing or two about these guys, but really in this cebraculture we’re immersed in, that really isn’t much of an issue, is it?

This is the most satisfying performance of Michael Cera's career.

This is the most satisfying performance of Michael Cera’s career.

It’s arguable that they tried too hard to go that extra mile about what it means to be a good person, but really, during the Apocalypse, I can’t say I blame them. Everything makes sense for the situation at hand, and we’re given some decent extremes – considering McBride’s douchebaggery and Baruchel’s piousness. Sometimes people are just assholes no matter what – but as we learn from James Franco, the intention outweighs the action. There’s a lesson for all of us I suppose.

Overall, this is a great little romp of a movie. It’s a bit predictable come the crunch, but the antics are incredibly entertaining. So if you’re into pop-culture references and dick jokes ahoy, go for it. If not, well, at least you’ll have a good time.

Final Grade: B+

Advertisements

V/H/S/2

Oh god yes.

Oh god yes.

I realize that I never actually released a review V/H/S, perhaps because I saw it a bit too late.  I’ll be honest, I liked it.  I thought it was a cool idea for a new genre of found-footage films.  And I really dig short stories.  This isn’t to say that V/H/S was perfect (seriously, how does a Skype conversation end up on a tape?), but it was most certainly enjoyable and worth seeing.  I think these films have an appeal similar to that of the Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark series.  Nostalgia a little there?  Anyway, when I found out that a sequel was in the works, I was pretty excited.

All I have to say is, I hope you like zombies.  Much like its predecessor, we’re dealing with about five stories.  Three of the five, including the overarching narrative, feature their own version of the undead.  Whoop-di-doo, I’ve never seen a zombie before.  Keep in mind, I have nothing against zombies, but they’re such a typical go-to these days.  When dealing with short stories, be a little creative, you know?  It’s okay to get a little weird.

In fact the weirdest this movie goes is with the segment Safe Haven, in which we observe the investigation of an Indonesian cult.  Solid setup I admit, but when shit hits the fan, man does it fly.  We go from John Carpenter to Sam Raimi in 0-to-60 – all due respect to both directors, but you know what I mean.  Pre-ball-dropping, I think it’s fair to say I enjoyed Safe Haven and Slumber Party Alien Abduction the most due to story and execution.  Though I do give kudos to A Ride in the Park for a neat idea.

Other than that, zombie scares.  And whatever rehashed spook this is –

Oh gee a creepy little girl.  Please, someone save me.

Oh no a creepy little girl. Please, someone save me.

All things considered, this is seriously a lackluster sequel.  It’s far more goofy than creepy, and it substitutes any actual scares for brief moments of intensity.  The best I can come up with for this is “it’s okay.”

Final Grade: C+