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What the Film? Tanked Matinee: Where the Movies Come to Drink! Wed, 28 Jun 2017 22:42:11 +0000 Joomla! - Open Source Content Management en-gb VALHALLA RISING (2009) VALHALLA RISING (2009)

The Buzz:

        A savage warrior, held captive by a Norse chieftain and forced to fight for money, escapes his bonds. Soon after this warrior, deemed One-Eye, and a young slave boy join forces with a group of Christian warriors to journey to the Holy Land. But their vessel is lost at sea, and they find themselves in a new world full of dangers.


Life of the Party/Potential Hangovers:

        Valhalla Rising is a strange movie.         To the point where I have to combine our “positives” & “negatives” sections, because what some people will really enjoy, others will really hate.

        Remember that part near the end of Apocalypse Now, when everything gets really trippy and takes on a “stream of consciousness” narrative? Valhalla Rising is pretty much like that for a full 93 minutes. To me, everything that's done in this film is to set up and maintain an atmosphere of tension and suspense. A combination of creative camera work, and nearly complete lack of dialogue, make you the viewer almost as uncomfortable and wary of what's going on as the characters on screen.

        If you saw the title of this film and expected Viking fights and swordplay, you'll be disappointed. Instead its a lot of people sitting/walking/staring into the distance, while mood music plays. It's slow and plodding, all in its mission to set up suspense.

        Beyond that there's really not a lot to say about Valhalla Rising. It's a film that you'll either really enjoy for its aesthetic qualities, or hate for its snail's pace and lack of action & excitement.


The Vibe: Lazy Afternoon

        Unlike most films we recommend, Valhalla Rising isn't really appropriate for most group settings, as its pacing will lead to everyone to start paying attention to...pretty much anything else. I've seen this film twice now; the first time I was so drunk I could barely move (due to it being a long weekend during college when Ben “The Pantsless Dynamo” showed up), and the second time while sitting around completely sober. And honestly the first situation was the better experience, since the stream of consciousness storytelling and drunkenness kind of go hand-in-hand. So find your favorite drink, pour some out (responsibly of course), and give Valhalla Rising a shot.

]]> (Enuncia) What the Film? Fri, 09 May 2014 14:35:02 +0000

     In a strangely modern-day version of 1985, a group of horny, boozed-up college kids heads out for a camping trip, only to become the targets of a mysterious cult, an obsessive big-game hunter, an assortment of sex criminals, various backwoods freaks, and the titular Yeti. Despite the parade of slasher-movie cliches involved, the title should probably tip you off that this is no ordinary horror movie. In fact, Yeti: A (Gay) Love Story is a schlocky horror-comedy produced by Troma Entertainment for a reported budget of around two hundred bucks, but it contains surprising entertainment value beyond what might seem like a one-joke premise.


The fact that some poor TV company employee had to write this summary,

so that people could get this movie on-demand, speaks volumes about modern society.


Life of the Party (Positives):

     Around here, most of us have a strong appreciation for movies put out by Troma, if our interview with Troma boss and trash cinema godfather Lloyd Kaufman hadn't made that clear already. It's strange then, that we haven't reviewed very many Troma films on the site, but the truth is that their unique brand of ultra-low budget, intentionally poor-quality, gross-out horror-comedies are a form of entertainment that you will either enjoy or absolutely loathe, simply based on personal taste. It's hard to give a general recommendation for Troma stuff, because the niche it occupies is so narrow, dark, and often coated in more weird goo than a Nickelodean Double Dare contestant. If you tend to only enjoy very polished, professional, mainstream movies that run in actual theaters, then you might as well quit reading here - this film is not a sleek and shiny production, and if you need that experience, you will not be comfortable watching this.


The gorilla costume may look fake, but you will believe that their love is 100% real.

     Counter-intuitively, though, it seems that a person DOES have to have a passion for and understanding of good movie-making in order to make an intentionally bad movie, and also to enjoy watching intentionally bad movies. Yeti is a low-fidelity production, but is a good example of how creativity and a clever sense of humor can make up for a lack of verisimilitude, or even logical storytelling. With a title like Yeti: A Gay Love Story, you might expect this film to have pretty much one joke, which would be "hurr-hurr, it's an abominable snowman that fucks people in the ass," but the story is surprisingly complex, despite the mere 70-minute runtime. At one point, after visiting the freak show, seeing several victims slaughtered by the bad guys, and the revelation of the lesbian love triangle, I figured we were almost through the movie, but looked down at the progress bar to see we were only a half hour in, and the secret society of yeti-hunting Catholic priests was just now being introduced. The script is basically a goofy word salad of horror tropes and weird situations that seem to occur completely at random, and is kindof charming because of it - it's like Axe Cop, if it were written by a 6-year-old drug-addled sex-offender, instead of just a normal 6-year-old.

     There are numerous instances of the standard Troma gross-out humor, generally defined by over-the-top gore effects, crude descriptions of various sexual perversions, and dialogue written specifically to make the audience uncomfortable - admittedly, that doesn't really do much for me. What did get some laughs, though, was the meta-humor and inversions of horror-movie tropes, including many scenes where the film used background music, montage, and other film techniques as the punchline for otherwise simple scenes. For instance, one early sequence features a character trying to use the woods as a bathroom and getting continually interrupted by spooky noises. This isn't all that funny on its own, but is improved by adding some classic "suspenseful build-up music" each time he squats down, only to have it cut out instantly once he stands up again. The scene goes on to have the character get chased through the woods in a panic, continually tripping over roots and having his clothes torn off by bushes - another normal scene for horror schlock, but funny simply because it's a panicky dude getting naked rather than a chick.


Potential Hangovers (Negatives):

     Speaking of nudity, there's a lot of it in this movie, and it's rarely very pleasant. Expect a lot of penises, both of the flaccid and comically wriggling variety, and the papier-mache gag dildo variety. Personally, I've always found Troma movies' nonpretentious attitude towards nudity to be kind of refreshing - none of these actors are chiseled Adonises or tight-bodied cover models, and yet when a sex scene arrives, they get naked and put on a very authentic romantic performance just like real people would - sex in real life is seldom perfectly posed and pretty, after all. However, I have no misconceptions about how this would be discomforting for some, even though some of the sexual montages are actually pretty funny (and not just the man/yeti love scenes, either).

     Though the random nature of the plot helps keep the pace up and provides a lot of comedy, there are a couple moments that leave you scratching your head as to why they were included. During one of the aforementioned love scenes, we fade into a montage of private parts gyrating at the screen in a symbolical manner, only to find that this was actually a nightmare that another character wakes up from. This character and his girlfriend are only in this one scene, never mentioned again, and have no bearing on the plot, so it's just kindof confusing why that semi-gag was even included. This movie is never capable of being fully understood, of course, but that scene and a few other elements seem to come completely out of left field.

The Atmosphere - Casual Gathering, Solo Experience:

     This is a movie not to be taken seriously, and should not be watched by any audience that takes itself seriously. To find out if you should watch it, read the title again - if you can get a chuckle from the title alone, you should probably give it a try, but if not, don't bother. As a person who has enjoyed just about all the Troma stuff he's seen, this amateurish indy production fits right in and makes for a quirky hour or so. And besides, you'll want to be to tell people you've seen this just for hipster movie cred.

     If this definitely IS your kind of movie, you should know that the crew are planning a sequel, and have a Kickstarter currently running to fund the production. They're trying to raise $15,000, and considering that their $200 product was still pretty entertaining, it'll be fun to see what they'll do next.

+ Indy film that charmingly satirizes lots of horror tropes using clever inversions and metahumor

+ It's blatantly Troma-tastic!

- It's blatantly Troma-tastic...

- Some elements are just unnecessary

Drinking Game Suggestions (this movie can really use it):

~Drink whenever fake blood gets smeared across something

~Drink whenever someone says "Yeti"

~Take a shot whenever a character changes his or her sexual orientation

]]> (Alex Lane) What the Film? Thu, 13 Feb 2014 23:54:54 +0000

The Buzz:


     There has got to be a joke here about “buzz” and flies and shit. You’ll have to put those pieces together and make it, though, because my brain is still recovering from watching this film. A Japanese comedy horror film that sees a group of friends attacked by zombies controlled by giant sentient tape worms. Throw in some mad scientist, literal toilet humor, and flying by fart propulsion and you start to understand the absolute insanity of this picture. 




Life of the Party:


     The single reason to watch this movie is to be down right shocked. There’s only one reason I can think that this movie was made and that’s so that people would think “Really? Someone made that? I have to watch this to find out how terrible it is…”, because that’s what went through my mind prior to starting it. I imagine the pitch to the studios were this: “Hey… we got this tentacle rape thing in Japan that’s really big. However, I heard about this thing that’s huge in Germany; it’s called a ‘Scheisse’ film. What if, and stay with me here, we COMBINED THE TWO?!”. And then I imagine people’s minds exploded. I imagine that there are only a few people who would read this that that description does a whole lot for. And those few people I’d rather not know. But, I don’t want to entirely scare people away from seeing it. I just want to set expectations. If you are like me and just… have a weird fascination with seeing the worst of the worst things or enjoy it when people try to shock you, or laugh at really low brow humor, maybe give this a try. You’re not going to love it, I hope. I didn’t. But it’s definitely an experience and I laughed numerous times if only for the absurdity of it all. So in the end, if you’re curious, watch it. Just… be prepared.



Funny... by the end of the film I felt the same...


Potential Hangovers:


     There is nothing truly GOOD about this movie. There just isn’t. It’s not very well acted. Special effects are silly if not down right bad at times. The humor is often so low brow that you laugh more that someone would even make the joke more than at the joke itself. You may even find some of it offensive. I can’t blame you for that. The thing I find the most disheartening is that this was done by director Noboru Iguchi who did films like Mutant Girls Squad, Karate-Robo Zaborgar, and The Machine Gun Girl which we’ve all loved not just in spite they’re low budget cheesiness, but in some cases for it! The man clearly has some talent from films like these, but I have a feeling Zombie Ass was made more for his personal perversions than anything else. I say this because of looking at some of the titles of the porns he directed prior to going to theatrical films. 



The poor man's human centipede.


The Atmosphere: Solo Experience, Casual Gathering


     I use Casual Gathering for this really loosely. Most people are not going to enjoy this picture. Even if you choose to watch it, YOU aren’t likely to truly enjoy it. But I wouldn’t really force a room of my friends to endure this. However, if it’s just you and maybe one or two of your friends who’s interest is piqued in just what the fuck this movie is about, well ok then. You’ll definitely get a unique experience out of it. I’m glad I watched it just to say I did, maybe you will be too. But even so you’ll likely be like me and not really have a desire to watch it again…




+It’s certainly one of a kind…

-Pretty much everything else.



Drinking Game:


There is only one rule. Keep drinking. You’ll want to scrub your brain by the end of the film, so… just keep drinking to get a head start.

]]> (Biggs) What the Film? Sat, 08 Feb 2014 20:25:06 +0000

The Buzz:


     Rin is a nerdy Japanese school girl who everyone picks on until her 16th birthday when her heritage is revealed that she is a descendant of a race of mutants who each display unique powers. Forced to defend herself from a population who doesn’t understand her self she is rescued by others of her kind who wish to take revenge on humanity. 





Life of the Party:


     As with any other Japanese flick of this variety it’s largely intended for audiences who enjoy campy special effects, blood splatter, and amusing death sequences. Story is not the forte of these kinds of films; they are merely catalysts for the absurdity that will be presented to you. And in Mutant Girls Squad this is exactly what you get. While it follows the standard format for what I call “Japanese GWAR films” (due to their heavy usage on monster effects and costuming similar to the American metal band GWAR), it was still highly enjoyable by standing out with creative dialogue and numerous moments of rather brilliant humor that had me literally laughing out loud. As the first release by new production company Sushi Typhoon I can say that I was impressed enough with this entry of the genre that I would be very interested in following their future releases. It’s always great to see new film teams creating fun new movies. Also thank god for the Japanese monster flicks like this that keep practical special effects alive.  


     An interesting note about this film is that it was actually directed by three different directors who each directed a different chapter (yes, there are chapters) of the picture. You can definitely see some subtle differences in the three men’s styles, but they still manage to pull off a cohesive movie that doesn’t seem disjointed by their different strengths and weaknesses. One of the directors, Noboru Iguchi, is also the director of Karate-Robo Zaborgar, Zombie Ass,  and Machine Girl. This is likely who brought in Naoto Takenake to cameo who also starred in the former. He also started out as a porn director, which sort of makes a lot of the content in his films slightly more understandable....



Trumpy! You can do stupid things!


Potential Hangovers:


     Story is cliché, but that’s ok… it’s not really the point. The delivery of lines is occasionally stunted. The camera work is a mixture of frantic movements and ingenious angles. In other words it’s what you would expect from film makers working with low budgets, but with real love of the craft. That means if you don’t like poorly blended green screens or cheesy practical effects with lots of unnecessary blood splatter and violence you should just stay clear. But let’s be honest if you’re even IN this category of film, you’re probably ok with all that.



It's obvious that one of the directors also directed Zombie Ass...


Vibe: Casual Gathering


     This needs to be watched with friends because it’s too absurd and humorous to not share. As with any foreign film it doesn’t work well with large crowds because you’re too easily distracted to keep up with subtitles. Whether you and your friends are looking for a good laugh or just something to make you question whether the entire world has gone insane I definitely recommend turning this on and enjoying it.




+ Great breaks of humor throughout

+ Campy blood splatter

+ Practical effects

- Inconsistent acting and camera work


Drinking Games:


-Drink every time you see fake genitals of any kind

-Drink whenever a mutant power is referred to as a “treasure”

-Finish your drink any time someone’s death is humorously extended.

-Waterfall while the mutant with the useless power dances on screen (you’ll know…)

]]> (Biggs) What the Film? Sat, 01 Feb 2014 18:38:09 +0000

The Buzz:


     The first film from Randy Moore, the picture follows a family on their final day of vacation in Disney World theme park. Odd events surround the family in a sort of surreal psycho-horror manner that, coupled with the monochrome images and low moral character of the protagonists,  serves to maintain an unsettling - yet oddly amusing - atmosphere for the audience. As the family tries to both ignore and finally make sense of the disturbing things events transpiring around them they realize that even in a place like Disneyworld… “bad things can happen anywhere.”





Life of the Party:


     This is an art house film by every definition of the word. First off it’s likely the only place you’re going to see it in a theater (my local art house had only a single showing which I fortunately caught), and secondly it’s not the kind of movie that is going to appeal to mass audiences. For people who like to explore films like this that push the envelope of absurdity this is a great thing. There are lots of big budget films and even in the independent film market such movies are becoming more and more indistinguishable from Hollywood productions. Escape from Tomorrow will never be mistaken as a “professionally” made film and that sort of charm is great. 


     The big buzz about this particular film is that Moore and crew shot the vast majority of scenes within Disney World and Disneyland parks without permission or knowledge of Walt Disney Company proper. Using guerrilla filmmaking tactics to stay under the radar of the staff at the parks they managed to really capture the essence of the parks since none of it was staged. There are also more than a number of jokes within the film regarding avoiding being sued by the Disney Company. Additionally, as to avoid the gaze of the Sauron-like eye of Walt Disney the film was edited in South Korea and special effects added by the same South Korean team who did the Korean monster flick The Host


     Speaking of the gags, this is really a sort of dark comedy. My local art house noted to expect something along the lines of Eraserhead and I kind of get the connection they made after seeing it. The movie is a sort of roller coaster of disturbing occurrences or images and amusing tongue-in-cheek gags. I honestly haven’t seen anything like this in a VERY long time. It’s such a unique experience. 


Kids get EVIL when they don't get what they want...


Potential Hangovers:


     This is a low budget film and the first film by the writer and director. That means that from a technical perspective there is a lot wrong with it. Moore learned how to do green screen while editing the film and while making the movie black and white helps, it’s PAINFULLY obvious when the green screen is in use. It also doesn’t help that Moore is very dynamic with his camera work and the still green screen scenes make the film feel disjointed. The film also seems like a sort of roller coaster since the plot is almost like a number of smaller stories all happening to the same few people and never really get tied together. Do not, under any circumstances, attempt to find rhyme or reason in the various events throughout the runtime… you will likely end up with an aneurysm if you do. That being said, while all of these would be seen as huge detriments to many other movies - Escape from Tomorrow seems to own up to all of it and turn them all into indie charm that just further adds to the picture. But you should be warned just in case you aren’t capable of accepting these… quirks. 


Talk about Disney on the brain...


Atmosphere: Casual Gathering, Solo Experience


     As any art film it’s not really intended to be something you have on in the background. Not only is it so all over the place that you need to pay attention to what’s happening, but there are so many little moments or quick things that if you aren’t paying attention you’ll miss them (for instance I missed the guy in the corner of the screen get decapitated on Thunder Mountain the first time around). Finally as the credits roll the only response you’re like to have is for your brain to come crashing to a halt and go “WHAT THE FUCK DID I JUST WATCH?!” and it’s probably important to have a few people around who also experienced Escape from Tomorrow who you can attempt to futilely make sense of it all with. The film has had a very limited release in theaters as you can expect, and it likely will never get a wider one. Additionally it’s looking very slim it may ever hit DVD (because at that point Disney will likely step in). So… while I typically do not publicly endorse finding bootleg copies of films I will say that if it is not playing anywhere near you there ARE decent bootlegs on popular (arrrrgghhh matey) torrent sites. I don’t imagine Moore would mind so long as you’re not passing up seeing it in your local theater. 





+ True art/indie film

+ Guerrilla filmmaking charm

+ Nothing ever like it

-Poor green screen effects

-May drive you insane if you think too hard about it. 



Drinking Games:


-Drink whenever someone’s face is distorted

-Finish a drink whenever the parents swap kids

-Take a drink any time you think a sequence is happening in the father’s head, finish the drink if you’re wrong. (first viewing only)

-Take a drink anytime there is any visual or verbal reference to a Disney film.

-Finish your drink any time the kids make you happy you don’t have kids (or that they aren’t yours).

]]> (Biggs) What the Film? Sat, 21 Dec 2013 20:19:29 +0000


     The frontman of Billy Nayer Show (to quote Wikipedia, a New York musical group of questionable genre) made a truly bizarre monochrome quasi-space western musical noir comedy drama adventure. With original music by the band organically fit into the (for lack of a better word) movie, this flick provides viewers with a surreal, almost nonsensical, definitely unusual experience for those curious enough to watch it and lucky enough to find it. It’s currently on Netflix, but who knows how long that could be for. I’m a huge fan of strange movies; this is the weirdest fucking movie I’ve seen since Taxidermia. I’ll attempt to summarize, just so I can say I tried: Samuel Curtis (a guy who’s a lot like Lone Star from Space Balls) gets hired to take The Boy Who Actually Saw a Woman’s Breast from Jupiter, the Planet of Men to Venus, the Planet of Women so that he can mate with them. All the while being chased by his arch-nemesis Professor Hess, a thrill-killer who can’t kill Curtis because Hess has an unspecified problem with Curtis. Yeah, that’s the best I can do. It’s so goddamned weird.



     I was entertained the entire duration of this movie. The music is awesome, the presentation is about thirty exits past “eccentric,” and the universe they build in it is actually kindof compelling. I’d never heard of Billy Nayer Show before I found this in the “random” list in Netflix, but I’m a huge fan now. It’s not quite a musical, because the music fits into the universe at really organic points. Well, as organic as a weird acid trip of a movie as this is going to get, anyway. I don’t frequently use the word “unique” to describe media, but I really don’t know if I’ve ever seen anything like this. Maybe Firefly mixed with Renaissance mixed with a Dream Theater concert? That’s the best I’ve got.


     If you have been reading up to this point, you may have noticed that I mentioned that this is a sortof strange movie. If you’re not in the mood to artistically open your mind up a little bit (seriously, The American Astronaut is so bizarre, it can be off-putting), don’t watch this. I don’t know the last art film I watched without being recommended to me first, but I was not prepared. The music was also stellar, but this is somewhere between a musical and a high-concept concert DVD, and all of it was super experimental, so if that’s not your cup of tea, you’re likely not to dig it as much. However, the story is really simple even though strange, so unlike most artistic films, I’d say it actually holds up well for group viewing.

THE ATMOSPHERE: Casual Gathering, Large Party

     Okay, so yeah; I’ve spent this whole review talking about how strange and inaccessible this film is. But I’ll be frank; all of us here at Tanked Matinee are weirdos who like obtuse films. I’m assuming you may be the same, because there are tons of review sites out there, yet you’re reading this one. So if you’re looking for a healthy dose of highly entertaining offbeat media for your party, I really recommend this film. It’s artistic, but it’s not pretentious whatsoever. The music and imagery just fit together so well that it really comes together to make a one-of-a-kind viewing experience loaded with tons of “wat” and laughs. So put it on for your party of weird people and enjoy! I know I sure as hell did.


Once when someone says a planet’s name

Once every time someone mentions The Boy Who Actually Saw a Woman’s Breast

Once for each person Professor Hess kills (estimate if you aren’t sure)

(Hertz Donut Mode) One shot for each Hertz Donut


]]> (JHBoman) What the Film? Tue, 17 Dec 2013 20:38:03 +0000
MAKKHI (2012) MAKKHI (2012)

The Buzz:


     Jani is a young man who lives across the street from the beautiful Bindu with whom he’s in love with. While Bindu reciprocates Jani’s feelings, she plays hard to get. Eventually wealthy playboy and gangster, Sudeep, sets his eyes on her. Realizing that Bindu only has eyes for Jani he murders Jani in order to steal her away. Jani is then reincarnated as a fly bent on revenge and must protect his love from the evil Sudeep. 




Life of the Party:


     Makkhi was actually filmed with the title Eega (both words meaning “fly” in different languages from India) in the language of Telugu from a subregion of India, which makes this technically a Tollywood film and not a Bollywood film (yes, that’s an actual distinction). Makkhi (which is the version I saw) is actually a dubbed version of the film in Hindi, which explains the odd way the lips and audio were seemingly just out of synch. The film made a pretty extensive tour of the independent film festival circuit in late 2012 and early 2013 winning numerous award for Best Picture, Best Actors, Best Director, Best Cinematography, etc, etc, etc. 


     This is a pretty good movie, surprisingly, despite it’s rather ridiculous premise. Or maybe BECAUSE of it…It’s hard to be sure. While Indian film has really grown over the last decade or so, I feel like this one in particular really begins to show how much Western film has influenced the area. It is still full of overly stylized performances at times, but most of the acting is rather natural. Then there’s the removal of the signature “musical exposition and dance number” every 30 minutes. There is some singing and dancing, but it’s never done with huge production or random people from the streets joining in. Also, it’s never done to tell part of the story. This is a big departure from the standard (at least so far as I’ve seen). Throw in more western clothing styles and a rather violent bent and this is actually, I believe, a pretty palatable comedy for western audiences who are otherwise not interested in films from this region.


I... see your point...


Potential Hangovers:


     While the film is definitely more palatable to western audiences, it’s still very rooted in it’s eastern culture; as should be obvious in it’s tale of reincarnation. For some this may be odd or put you off… especially if you hate subtitles.  Special effects and CGI have not yet gotten to Hollywood level of talent in India and it shows. It isn’t bad, in quite much of it is good, but as an American used to seeing CGI that is almost indistinguishable from film… this may seem dated or bad despite being made so recently.  If that kind of thing bothers you, you’ll be disappointed since almost all of the film hinges on CGI effects. 


     One thing that definitely bothered me watching this was that Jani (originally Nani in the Telugu version) is reincarnated as a fly. That’s fine, except that it’s my understanding that reincarnation in Hindu rules state that reincarnating as a “lower” life form was destined to sinful beings or those with bad karma. Jani seems like a genuinely nice guy while alive, so that seems odd that he’d come back as a fly… Another thing that bothered me is how this seemingly nice guy just flips a 180 after his reincarnation to this sadistic homocidal entity… and how easily Bindu goes along with the idea of murdering someone! I mean I guess traumatic death effects people in drastic ways, but… it’s a tad off putting when you think about the lengths these two young people go to. They don’t intend to reveal his criminal ways and have him brought to justice… just murder him. 


His power level is....


Atmosphere: Casual Gathering


     This movie was fun to watch by myself, but there’s definitely moments when I wish I had had a few friends around to laugh with either at or with the film. Big parties don’t really work for foreign films unless they’re over the top special effects monsters, which this isn’t really. I could see this being nice for a date night, but even then I think there’s better options unless you and your significant other just really love Indian film. But for a well made film to watch with friends with an original plot (sorely lacking in American film…) and fun performances this is a pretty high ranking foreign film. 




+ Easier watch for western audiences

+ Original plot

+ Well crafted film

Oddly sadistic


Drinking Games:


Drink every time Jani flexes

Finish your drink when Jani wipes blood from his face

Drink when you see tweezers.

Waterfall while you hear a song from Tees Maar Khan

Drink when Jani enters an orifice. 

HARDCORE MODE: Drink any time Jani goes through something round shaped.

]]> (Biggs) What the Film? Sat, 14 Dec 2013 18:47:10 +0000

The Buzz:

        In some incredibly unhappy part of our supposed future, celebrity-worship has reached what I would normally call epidemic proportions, but considering the theme of this film that would be unfortunate. Fans who wish to become closer to their favorite celebrities will now pay exorbitant amounts of money to be injected with diseases from those celebrities' bodies. Our main character (calling him the protagonist just doesn't feel right with me) works for an esteemed clinic providing these services, and also makes money by stealing the various diseases and smuggling them out by infecting himself, so that they may be sold by piracy groups. Unfortunate events ensue.


Life of the Party/Potential Hangovers:

        I'm combining these two sections for this review because, by and large, most of the things that will draw viewers to Antiviral will turn away about an equal number of people.

        First off, this movie is probably the weirdest damn film I've ever seen. At times (meaning the entire movie minus perhaps 5 minutes) the film takes on the aspect of a bastard love-child of the movie Pi and a music video for Tool. Caleb Landry Jones plays our main character Syd March, and he takes creepy & strange as character traits to otherworldly levels. It fits in perfectly with his character, and I can't imagine a better way to do it. But he's SO damn creepy that you find it incredibly hard to sympathize with his character and his struggles. And everyone else in the movie are pretty downright loathsome you don't really want ANYONE to succeed.

This is your "protagonist" ladies and gentleman...

        And a lot of the movie is just uncomfortable. I imagine it's almost how people feel when Boman shows them Taxidermia. You're watching crazed fans purposefully injecting themselves with Herpes or flu's or whatever disease some celebrity has recently come own with, and your main character purposefully injecting himself with those self-same diseases to turn a buck. And to avoid spoilers, there's a scene when Syd goes into a fever dream that had me seriously checking to see if someone had put date-rape drugs in my beer when I wasn't looking (I was alone at the time). Some viewers like this kind of thing (hell, I certainly do, how else do you explain me watching Solaris multiple times?), but others will be turned away.

        Fans of dark, strange, and outright weird films will certainly find something in Antiviral. The cinematography, soundtrack, and acting all fit the decidedly creepy theme, and fans of David Cronenberg body-horror will delight to know that his son Brandon directed this film, and has has continued his father's works to completely and utterly unnerve his audiences.


Would you like her Herpes?  Or perhaps her case of the Bubonic Plague?

The Vibe: Casual Gathering, Deep Thoughts

        If you're going to watch Antiviral solo you better be in the mood for some deep thinking and concentration. But honestly I think it's best served with a small group of friends who are all willing to sit quietly, pay attention, and throw back some drinks to cope with what the film is doing to their brains. As a drinking game, I'd suggest taking a drink anytime you see a hypodermic needle, or anytime someone says the word “virus.” Follow those rules and you'll get pretty toasty in no time at all.



+/- Incredibly weird film

+/- Characters are all perfectly acted, in a loathsome and strange way

+/- Particularly dark theme

]]> (Enuncia) What the Film? Fri, 20 Sep 2013 18:12:41 +0000

The Buzz:

     A 2001 black and white film written as a spoof to classic 1950's-60's era sci-fi thriller flicks the like would have been seen
in drive-ins across the US. This amazing throwback to a bygone time of cinema delivers comedy that just about anyone should be able to appreciate, but ultimately will warm the hearts of die hard cinephiles who have seen plenty of these old black and white schlock fests to appreciate just how spot on of a spoof this really is. 




Life of the Party:

      Talking too much about this film ruins a lot of the humor of it; it really has just about everything you'd want out of a spoof of this kind of movie. Hand sewn monster costume? Check. Skeleton on visible strings? Check. Overacting? Check. Oblivious women? Check. Scientist? Check. Aliens? Check. Made up words? Check. Random shots of canyons? Check. I could go on. The build up in absurdity as more and more classic sci-fi tropes are stacked on top of each other is fantastic. Couple that with being largely shot in Bronson Canyon which was a well used location for old school B-movies and camera work so painstakingly accurate to the era it emulates that if you like spoofs or even if you like old black and white sci-fi films: do yourself a favor and check out this cult classic.


I do cocaine..... 

Potential Hangovers:

      The movie is a tad long for what it is. On top of that much of it's humor is a one trick pony, which makes it feel even longer at times. That being said just when you think that you've had enough of the same joke… they throw a change up at you that gets a great laugh. Yeah, they'll often go back to beating that dead horse; however, I think that's done on purpose. The old sci-fi films this spoof tended to be overly drawn out and repetitious in dialogue. So while this does hurt Lost Skeleton, it also shows a bit of understanding and love for the classics. Really the sure fire way to make watching this loads better is to do so with friends and some drinks in hand - follow my Drinking Game below and you'll have a plenty of laughs and lines you and your friends will be repeating for years.


Skeletons need substitutes for choking it... 

The Vibe: Casual Gathering

     This was a film I was introduced to by some friends of mine (shout out to Tim, Nate, Elvis, et al) during my college years. Having grown up watching lots of MST3K I was well accustomed to the type of film Lost Skeleton was making fun of. This picture is like watching MST3K, but the jokes are baked into the script itself. We watched a copy of a VHS at the time and I've actually never seen it for sale anywhere, so when I saw that this is now watchable on Netflix I got really excited. I can't recommend this movie enough, there's nothing like it out there. Even if you don't end up loving it (though, I hope you do), hopefully you'll appreciate it for what it is.



+ Spoof done right

+ Great cinematography

+ Absurd

- A bit long and drawn out.

- Beats a dead horse at times.


Drinking Games:

- Drink any time someone says "science" or some derivation thereof.

- Drink any time someone says "I wonder…", finish the drink if they end it with "oh well."

- Drink every time Lattis and Kro-Bar say "Earth".

- Waterfall for as long as the mutant is on screen.

- HARDCORE MODE!: Drink whenever someone is redundant or a phrase or word is repeated in dialogue, yell out what that word is before taking the drink. 



]]> (Biggs) What the Film? Sat, 03 Aug 2013 17:20:45 +0000

The Buzz:

     The only thing that you know going into this film is the fact that John dies at the end.  This helps the viewer not have a preconception of what to expect and just adds to the enjoyment of this mind-fuck festival.  The plot centers around Dave and John who are normal people pushed into a crazy story they even they don’t fully understand.  I will not go into the plot more than that because I really do not know where to start; the film is like a fantasy world with infinite amounts of folds.  The movie comes from one of my favorite directors Don Coscarelli who created Phantasm, The Beastmaster, Bubba Ho-Tep and a sweet gem Kenny & Co.  And it’s great to see what Don can do on a bigger budget as his base ideas have always been brilliant, yet untapped.  And just remember don’t be too surprised when John Dies at the End.








Life of the Party:

     There is a lot of good to be said about the movie; first off it’s nice to see Coscarelli work with a big budget; the closest he ever got before was Phantasm II.  I know I said that before, but it makes a huge difference and allows him to expand on the untapped potential his past films had.  The film is bat-shit crazy and never really stays on one topic for too long, but it really pulls that vibe off.  The main reason that the film works are two-fold, the first is the story written by Cracked writer David Wong.  The other reason is the superb acting job by all parties in the film. The two main characters are played by unknowns Chase Williamson and Rob Mayes.  The supporting cast is also excellent with Paul Giamatti, Clancy Brown, Glynn Turman, and a cameo by Angus Scrimm as a freaking priest.  The effects are also excellent and really work to put you into the crazy world this film exists in.  Please queue this film up ASAP and give it the shot it truly deserves.


Yup!  That's A Meat Monster! 


Possible Hangovers:

     I would love to say that this film was perfect and no hangovers can be reported, but that just wouldn’t be true.  The film jumps around like a rabbit on speed and can be a bit frenetic for most casual viewers.  There is an issue with the story as well, it kinda just forms as you watch the movie, as if they said…well let’s see where this goes.   The entire portion that takes place in a separate dimension is confusing at best and contrived at the worst.  The vibe the film gives off is that it was written by listening to Gary Busey mumble in his sleep, but I find it brilliant.


I Modeled It After My Penis... 


The Vibe: Casual Gathering

     Honestly this film should be viewed with alcohol and like-minded friends who are willing to give anything a chance.  I watched this by myself and I enjoyed the film and the experience, but that might not play for everyone.  Also don’t be sad that the ending is given away at the beginning, just enjoy the ride that gets you there.  Please don’t forget to watch the end credit sequence; it caps the film off nicely.



+ The Acting

+ Bigger Budget

+ Don Coscarelli

+/- Fucking Nuts!

+/- No REALLY Fucking Nuts!

- Jumps around a lot

- Hard to keep up with for some


Drinking Games:

~ Drink when something crazy happens

~ Drink when Dave talks to himself

~ Drink when Bark Lee is smarter than the people

~ EXTREME: Drink when something explodes or is set on fire

~ EXTREME: Drink when you don’t know that the fuck is going on

]]> (Nick Schmidt) What the Film? Sun, 26 May 2013 00:00:00 +0000