Madness at the Movies: Tron Legacy

Okay, full disclosure. I just about wanted to kill myself watching the original Tron. I couldn’t remember much about the…

Okay, full disclosure.

I just about wanted to kill myself watching the original Tron.

I couldn’t remember much about the original Tron, but was given an opportunity to see it a couple of days ago, and jumped at the chance, figuring that it could enhance my viewing of Tron: Legacy, which I’ve been dying to see.  See, fans of the original have been excited about Legacy for its continuing of the storyline – me, I was excited about it because it looked amazing.  I didn’t know much about the story and, to be honest, Marvel’s prequel comic to the movie just confused the hell out of me.

So I gave the first flick a shot and, while I admire what it was doing at the time, I also understand why ultimately the film is a cult hit and not one of those cherished classics, like Star Wars or Indiana Jones.  I mean, it’s quite an unexciting film.  Visually interesting, but storywise, it just didn’t cut it for me.  If anything, it actually hurt my motivation to see the sequel.  I understand that it has its audience, and I get it…I just couldn’t get into the movie.  Nonetheless, I was determined to see Tron Legacy on its opening weekend.  Did 28 years make a difference in storytelling technique?  Did the film live up to its awesome visuals?

Madness at the Movies: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows, Part 1

The end of a beloved saga is always going to divide fans.  Revenge of the Sith (and even Return of…

The end of a beloved saga is always going to divide fans.  Revenge of the Sith (and even Return of the Jedi) have hardcore fans, and hardcore detractors.  So do the final Pirates of the Caribbean series, and The Matrix films, amongst many others.  It’s just impossible to please everybody.

The final Harry Potter novel is almost universally adored and the filmmakers decided that, rather than being willing to sacrifice any important story beats, it would be better to split the story into two movies, which makes Harry Potter the Deathly Hollows, Part 1 primarily build up to the eventual big battle between the forces of good and evil. 

Madness at the Movies: Due Date

Ya know, I’ve got to admit…I’m getting tired of Zach Galifianakis.  To a certain extent, I was tired of him…

Ya know, I’ve got to admit…I’m getting tired of Zach Galifianakis.  To a certain extent, I was tired of him before The Hangover was even finished.  I’ve never been a big fan of that whole “annoying guy that everyone grows to love” concept – in fact, I pretty much get sick of all characters/actors who get their fame by doing that type of role (like Jonah Hill).  To a certain extent, the schtick wore thin in the hay days of John Candy and Bill Murray, but there will always be some kind of actor who tries to fill the role, not realizing that what worked for those guys is that they were as lovable as they were annoying.

So it’s probably not going to come as a surprise what my thoughts on Due Date are.  I saw the movie mainly for Robert Downey, Jr, who I think is pretty awesome (who doesn’t?), but the trailers made it seem like Galifianakis was essentially playing the same character, if not the exact same role, as he did in The Hangover.  Still, I ventured to check the flick out, and my full review is after the jump.

Madness at the Movies: Piranha 3-D

In the mood for blood and boobs in glorious, glorious three dimensions? Looks no further than Piranha 3D! We finally…

In the mood for blood and boobs in glorious, glorious three dimensions?

Looks no further than Piranha 3D!

We finally get some horror this summer (the last horror film released theatrically, I think, was Nightmare on Elm Street back in April/May), at the very end.  I really am tired of seeing “Watch it in DIGITAL 3D” at the end of every trailer nowadays, knowing that most movie companies are converting movies post-production just to get the extra money that helped Avatar become the highest grossing movie of all time.

Piranha was converted to 3D post-production, but I had high hopes that, unlike most 3D movies, Piranha would make the best use of its 3D.  In my opinion, even though the movies weren’t necessarily that great, The Final Destination and My Bloody Valentine were some of the best live-action uses of 3D I’ve seen since 3D became all the rage.  Horror in 3D is just about the only 3D worth paying the extra funds for … but was Piranha worth that extra $3.50 charge?

Madness at the Movies: Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

Man, I love the Scott Pilgrim graphic novels.  In case you don’t remember, my love for Scott Pilgrim is so…

Man, I love the Scott Pilgrim graphic novels.  In case you don’t remember, my love for Scott Pilgrim is so strong that I attended a midnight release party for the sixth and final book, Scott Pilgrim’s Finest Hour. The series is funny, heartwarming, and full of awesome action and video game references.

Well, now we get Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, an adaptation of all six books, wrapped up into one epic movie of epic epicness.  That’s right, all six books are jam packed into one movie.  Shaun of The Dead and Hot Fuzz director Edgar Wright got the job of directing a cast, headed by Michael Cena and Mary Elizabeth Winstead.  Did the movie live up to my love of the books?

Madness at the Movies: The Expendables

I’ve been a Sylvester Stallone fan my entire life.  Just something about the guy and his rise to fame I…

I’ve been a Sylvester Stallone fan my entire life.  Just something about the guy and his rise to fame I find inspiring.  I remember the bad Stallone years, right after Get Carter.  That film flopped and no one liked it (I did), but then it was followed by either limited release movies or straight-to-DVD fare…not good for one of the biggest action stars of all time.

Still, Stallone managed, by revisiting old characters, to revive his career into a place it hasn’t been in years.  Rocky Balboa did well at the box office, and was a damn good movie.  Following that, he did Rambo which again did well in box office and critical reviews.  I’m really happy to see Stallone putting out quality work again, and apparently so are a lot of people.

But as exciting as it may have been to see Rocky and Rambo one more time…the announcement of The Expendables got everyone foaming at the mouth.  Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Eric Robert, Steve Austin, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, and cameos by Arnold Schwarzenegger and Bruce Willis?  How could you possibly go wrong?  This would surely be the greatest action movie of all time….right?

Madness at the Movies: Friday Fulci Fest!

Last Friday night, a buddy of mine and I decided to finally have the horror movie marathon we’ve been talking…

Last Friday night, a buddy of mine and I decided to finally have the horror movie marathon we’ve been talking about for months now…a Freakin’ Fulci Friday Film Fest!  What did Freakin’ Fulci Friday Film Fest entail?

  • 3 Lucio Fulci Films – City of the Living Dead, The Beyond, and House by the Cemetary
  • Italian beer – in this case, Peroni and Birra Moretti
  • Italian food – pizza qualified because we were lazy

With all three elements in place, we prepared ourselves to venture into the oddness of early 80’s Italian horror!

Madness at the Movies: The Other Guys

I really dislike Will Ferrell.  I mean, sure, I like Old School just like every other dude, but I don’t…

I really dislike Will Ferrell.  I mean, sure, I like Old School just like every other dude, but I don’t think I’ve outright enjoyed any film since then where he was the lead (or one of the leads).  Maybe it was because I wasn’t too familiar with him when Old School came out, and I soon came to realize that, yes, he’s that damned annoying all the time.

Yet for some odd reason, I thought that The Other Guys would be different.  After all, with a cast that included Mark Wahlberg, Eva Mendes, Michael Keaton, Samuel L. Jackson, and The Rock, it couldn’t be that bad….could it?

Madness at the Movies: Dinner for Schmucks

I remember, after seeing the trailer for Dinner for Schmucks, thinking “Christ on a bike, who the hell would want…

I remember, after seeing the trailer for Dinner for Schmucks, thinking “Christ on a bike, who the hell would want to see that movie?” before realizing that my buddy sitting next to me was excited about it.  Begrudgingly, I agreed to see it with him, because he’s that movie buddy that will typically go see the films with me that no one else wants to see (except for Nightmare on Elm Street…looks like I’m waiting for the DVD on that one).

Before the film, I made sure to have a good amount to drink – what had I signed myself up for, I thought.  I hate hate HATE Steve Carrell.  I like Paul Rudd, but I find that the guy is starting to get into a bit of a rut, always playing the nice, straight guy in comparison to some kind of wacky other actor.  Not only that, it was directed by Jay Roach, who directed the abysmal Meet the Parents movies.  Not a strong pedigree….

Madness at the Movies: Cobb Cinebistro!

Dinner theaters are tricky to pull off.  There’s simply not one that’s going to please everyone.  Hardcore moviegoers get annoyed…

Dinner theaters are tricky to pull off.  There’s simply not one that’s going to please everyone.  Hardcore moviegoers get annoyed at being interrupted during the movie with servers bringing food and drink.  Casual moviegoers are turned off at the expense of the typically overpriced food.  Not only that, dinner theaters are hard to maintain – you think spilled soda and popcorn are hard to clean up?  Imagine mixing in beer, pizza, and burgers.

Drinking beer while watching a movie sounds like a great time and all, but is it really an enjoyable moviegoing experience.  New to the Hampton Roads area of Virginia (with locations in Florida already open), Cobb’s new Cinebistro line of movie theaters attempts to remedy the issues with typical dinner theaters, making a truly extravagant experience for moviegoers.  But is it worth the price of admission?