In the dark, Blade Runny dystopia in which Michelle (Ling) lives with her no-good younger brother Jackie (Parry Shen), scientists are toying with a glove-like device that can recombine DNA. In virtuous hands it could cure diseases for good, but in evil hands, it could be weaponized and destroy the world. That's how these things usually go. Let the chase begin.
Continue reading: The Gene Generation Review
Mistress Malice Saturday 15th March 2008 Wizard World at the Los Angeles Convention Center Los Angeles, California
Green's agenda is to return the horror genre to a lean mixture of gore and humor, as well as reestablishing the notion of horror iconography. His icon is Victor Crowley, a double-decker-sized mutant hillbilly relegated to the swamps of New Orleans. As you might suspect, Victor finds himself in the mood for a festive homicide when a boatload of tourists on a haunted swamp tour get stuck near his burnt-out family shack. Soon enough, Victor begins tossing limbs and torsos every which way while impaling and mutilating any body that has the good fortune of staying in one piece. It becomes the charge of a vengeful girl (Tamara Feldman) and a nerdy so-and-so (Joel Moore) to escape Crowley's clutches, heartbeats intact.
Continue reading: Hatchet Review
Lin's assured and electric tale of good kids gone bad might be just another run-of-the-mill exercise in flashy adolescent nihilism were it not for the cleverly atypical way in which he confronts the material. By setting his film in a nondescript affluent California neighborhood and focusing on Asian-American characters who have their lives totally under control, the director finds a new avenue into the rather tired realm of suburban exposes uncovering the angst and anger lying just beneath the communities' cheery and docile facades. Ben and his friends are, in some respects, stereotypical well-to-do Asian-American students: studious, motivated, passive, and anonymous amidst their predominantly white classmates. Their lives are dominated by the single-minded desire to get into a good college, and they all work furiously at participating in numerous extracurricular activities (working in hospitals, playing on the basketball team, competing on the academic decathlon team) to bolster their college applications. They're like well-oiled machines, robotically tearing through high school as if the only worthwhile goal in life is a perfect GPA and early acceptance to an Ivy League school, and their wholesomeness is humorously alluded to by Lin's use of Jerry Mathers (aka "The Beaver") as Ben's biology teacher.
Continue reading: Better Luck Tomorrow Review
Oh well. Their loss is our gain. The Hazing is a monumentally bad horror film, but it's so campy and absurdly gory you can't help but guiltily enjoy your 87-minute stay with it.
Continue reading: The Hazing Review
The premise is simple: a high school ugly duckling named Dizzy (Road Trip's DJ Qualls) turns it around and starts fresh at a new school, strutting like a badass and making a new personality for himself as a guy named Gil. The supposedly funny twist is that he gets his education in cool while hanging at a prison, taking lessons in toughness from Eddie Griffin (wasted in his short appearance), learning how to dance like a hipster from Horatio Sanz (also wasted), and getting a makeover from the stereotypical cross-dressing cons in the pen. In each scene, Decter and screenwriter David Kendall (big blame goes to him too) want to get right to the funny immediately - the only problem is that each attempt results in a vacant black hole.
Continue reading: The New Guy (2002) Review
For its first 20 minutes or so, the big-geek-on-campus comedy "The New Guy" gets by on a semi-fresh twist of tiresome teen clique themes and a well-cast lead. DJ Qualls -- the 98-lb. walking weakling punchline from 2000's "Road Trip" -- plays a bottom-of-the-food-chain bully magnet who changes high schools and reinvents himself as a wiry, uber-cool bad ass.
But as soon as the kid gets comfortable with his new studly status (insert stock scenes of trampy cheerleaders here) and we've seen Qualls' entire comical cool-jerk repertoire, the movie plum runs out of ideas and putters along on fumes until the closing credits.
Lazy and simplistic, when "The New Guy" isn't beating long-dead genre horses (Qualls feels guilty, for about two minutes, about dissing his "real" friends for the in crowd), it's a blender-edited mish-mosh of abridged plot points. Our hero apparently teaches everyone in his new school to get along, but we don't see how he does it. Before long campus hotties are hanging off the arms of dorks, overweight guys and other former outcasts. No explanation there either. Qualls' dad (Lyle Lovett) and former school counselor (Illeana Douglas) think his new style and attitude are signs of a drug problem, but that story angle is abandoned after about 30 seconds.
Continue reading: The New Guy Review
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