June's DVD Reviews, Part I
Quick reviews from my Netflix queue and/or the library.

Iron Man, 2008
Rawks!  Saw it at the theater even.  With the possible exception of Batman Begins, this is the first superhero flick that achieved proper suspension of disbelief by actually devoting the appropriate amount of time to the awkward beginnings of an emerging superhero character.  Bonus: Unlike the two-dimensional version in the comic books (<--pun?), this Tony Stark actually has the personality we're all hoping to see from Heath Ledger's Joker when the movie season next crests.

Sex and the City, 2008
Nah, I'm fucking with ya.  Maybe I'll rent it when it's free from the library, but in the meantime, I'll stick to watching comedies that are actually funny and not filled with neurotic, aging women who I wouldn't even want to see naked at this point.  For example...

Superbad, 2007
It never seemed to find the audience it deserved, but it is honestly this generation's Porky's.

Alias: Season 5, Discs 3&4
A somewhat abrupt and anti-climactic finish to an otherwise consistently good (if consistently over-the-top) series.  Unlike 99% of the tv-to-movie spin-offs currently in production, I would welcome this one if they ever went that route.

Nip/Tuck: Season 4, Discs 3&4
Out of desperation, the writers are alternately going two very different paths: really bad or somewhat experimental.  My advice: I don't care if it isn't AMA approved, only one of these two choices isn't really bad.

Classic Albums: Guns N' Roses: Appetite for Destruction, 1991
Wow.  Total crap.  Lots of discussion by complete outsiders about a band they've likely never even met.  No discussion about the music, just armchair psychoanalysis of Axl that we all finished with sometime around when they made this.  Even the title is a lie (no pun on my part on the 2nd album) since they devote almost as much time to the entire back catalog as the first album.

Wild Palms: Disc 2, 1993
I've heard G'n'R described as the band with the most squandered talent.  Well, this is something different, a project with lots of potential squandered by an almost complete lack of talent on the part of everyone involved.

Zach Galifianakis: Live, 2006
A depressing hour-long sort-of documentary/sort-of comedy concert (at a small venue) that is largely improvised, and it just plain doesn't work.  Seriously, this looks like a series of outtakes with only occasional flashes of inspiration, mainly from Zach playing his fictional twin brother in portions of the mockumentary.  The rest of the time the audience squirms through an uncomfortable series of experiments that don't warrant the presence of a camera crew... or that poor audience for that matter.  There are a lot of bad comics I wish were dead, but watching one of the ones I usually root for die on-stage for this long in one viewing is not my idea of a good time.

Woman in the Moon, 1931
In general, I like watching the movie and then the deleted scenes separately.  After all, there's usually a reason why they're deleted.  Here, with all of them restored from their rightful place on the cutting room floor, it feels like the in-flight movie on a trip to the moon and back in a film that really wasn't that great to begin with.

Yesterday, 2004
Good, but depressing Best Foreign Film nomination.  I don't even want to revisit it with this description.  Here's all you need to know: Africa and AIDS.  Yep.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 2: Disc 3, 1997
I'm hanging in here because there's a legion of Buffy die-hards who swear this show gets better eventually.  If they're lying, I'm getting a wooden stake.

Gilmore Girls: Season 7: Disc 3, 2006
I see where they're going here.  Very slowly, but I get it no matter how fast they talk about everything else to distract me.

PICKS OF THE LITTER: Iron Man is quite honestly the blueprint for any decent superhero movie that follows from here on out, while Superbad is quite the opposite of what its title suggests to anyone who doesn't speak jive.  Also, you should be watching Battlestar Fracking Galactica even when I haven't had time to watch any in the last couple weeks.

June's DVD Reviews, Part II
Quick reviews from my Netflix queue and/or the library.

Resident Evil III: Extinction, 2007
The zombies move pretty fast, and Mila's hot (as always), but it goes nowhere in a hurry, sadly.

The Number 23, 2007
It takes some really fun numerology tricks that make you question the structure of the universe and turns them into a small story that in the end leave you questioning why you bothered watching this when the last time Joel Schumacher and Jim Carrey teamed up, it was a Batman flick.

A Clockwork Orange: Special Edition
I just watched the extras.  Not a lot new when something like this is packaged posthumously with respect to Kubrick, but there's some interesting stuff on Malcolm McDowell and his career that honestly has little to do with the movie.

The Heartbreak Kid, 2007
The Farrelly Brothers actually do a grerat job of updating the hell out of this one, even if in spots it's a bit too reminiscent of Something About Mary including the casting of the one guy less likable than original lead Charles Grodin: Ben Stiller.

The Transporter, 2002
Lacks the personality of the I flicks, but the action sequences are pretty damned good and comprise about 80% of the movie.  Not a bad ratio since that's the only reason to watch it.

Trancers, 1985
Cult low budget sci-fi classic.  It's got it all including the budget saving plot device: time-travel back to LA of the present plus a synth soundtrack and Helen Hunt back when she was making movies.

Ugly Betty: Season 1, Discs 3&4
Really great show, honestly.  This one continues to impress me by slowly morphing from a live-action cartoon into a fast-paced comedy with surprising depth.

Zoo, 2007
Poorly-made documentary about zoophilia's lowest hour: a much-publicized incident in which a guy dies after sex with a horse ruptures his colon.  The film doesn't explain much more than a typical news report or Wikipedia article, so consult the latter instead if you care.

Gilmore Girls: Season 7: Disc 4, 2006
Well, I like it.  The girls wear lots of jeans this season, so obviously my letter-writing campaign worked!

Doctor Who: Season 2: Disc 1, 2005
Better special effects than the original series(es), but otherwise it's still the same show, even with a new Doctor this season.

Personal Best, 1982
Famous as an early lesbian-friendly picture, you'll enjoy it if you're a straight guy too, even if you aren't much on women's sports.  The (paradoxically) understated sensationalism aside, it does a good job of looking at the complexities of the characters' relationships both romantic and professional.

Zeta One, 1969
Sexploitation sci-fi spy comedy.  I really can't make up a description that good nor a movie this unentertaining.  I kept glancing to the lower right corner of the screen for two robots and a smart-alec guy to provide the appropriate commentary, but there was nothing to elevate this above the cheese it's always been.

Zerophilia, 2005
Takes a while to get started and the acting is somewhat amateurish in spots, but then it gradually reveals itself to be honestly the most original and intentionally humorous attempt on film to look at the complexities of gender and sexuality.  I'm not jerking you off here.

PICKS OF THE LITTER:Zerophilia doesn't go too deep, but it gets you thinking about the structure of society and the dynamics between the genders, which is much more than you typically expect from something that presents itself as nothing more than a teen sex comedy.  Trancers is pure fluff, but so's popcorn, and you'll enjoy pairing these two.  Same with The Heartbreak Kid.  Finally, Ugly Betty deserves attention other than what she gets with her looks.

Copyright 2008 Ale[x]plorer.
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