Saturday, April 25, 2015

The Man With the Iron Fists 2: Sting of the Scorpion

Back in January of 2014, I saw the first Man With the Iron Fists movie and I LOVED it!! Back then in my post, I openly revealed that I am completely new to the whole Kung Fu genre and had only seen maybe 2 martial arts movies ever? Since then... I don't think that number has really changed, but I am still very open to suggestion! I actually didn't know that there was a sequel to the first movie until I happened to be at Walmart late one night, browsing movies like I do, and I stumbled across this DVD just sitting on a shelf! I took a picture and sent it to a friend of mine asking if they knew this was out yet, to which they replied no. Now the DVD was out of my price range that night, but a couple days later I happened to notice that the movie was on Netflix too! Sweet, no reason to buy when I can try for free...ish....that's how Netflix works, right?

When we left our nameless Blacksmith (RZA) hero in the first movie, he had successfully defeated the cruel Silver Lion and brought peace to the people of Jungle village. And now a new journey lays before him. Wanting to restore his Chi and to atone for his sins, the Blacksmith begins traveling to the Wu Chi Mountain, a mountain that is said to have a well that holds a very powerful Chi that has been nicknamed the Golden Nectar. The Golden Nectar is said to provide it's consumer with immortality, and maybe this Chi can help right the Blacksmith's wrongs. But his journey is interrupted when his boat is attacked by Silver Lion's brother, and during battle the Blacksmith is knocked unconscious into the river which carries his body to a new village with new troubles.

Inner peace is not easy accomplished, especially not on this journey.

The Tsaifu village has struck upon very dark times. A cruel, power-hungry clan known as the Beetle Clan has infiltrated the village and forced the inhabitants to mine endlessly under the city for silver. Lead by the evil Master Ho (Carl Ng) who loves to flaunt his power and ability to take anything he pleases, no one who has stood up to him has ever come out of the fight alive. And what's worse yet, is what is happening to the young girls of the village. For some unexplained reason, every night a new girl is found within the village with blue, withered they've been sucked dry of their Chi! The Tsaifu villagers fear that it's the ghost of Lord Pi, a renegade monk who died trying to take the Golden Nectar by force - it's rumored that his spirit sucks the Chi from innocent victims every night. The girls die by night, and if the villagers do no comply with the silver mining by day more lives are lost. Is there hope for Tsaifu? Of course there is!

Withered girls? Slave-driving invader clans? Tsaifu has seen better times!

Among the ranks of the silver miners is a man named Li Kung. Li Kung (Dustin Nguyen) keeps his head down in the mines, but he is a skilled fighter...and watching these young girls fall victim to this mysterious force is too much for him to bear. He has a young daughter of his own named Innocence (Pim Bubear) that he wants to furiously protect. But the Beetle Clan and the disabled Mayor of the village (Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa) do nothing...and Li Kung cannot hold back his anger for much longer. And that is when the Blacksmith comes into his life. The Blacksmith - who reveals his name is Thaddeus - is rescued from the river by Innocence and his wounds are cared for. During his care, Thaddeus learns about the plight of the Tsaifu village and while he's already decided to devote his life to peace he cannot leave these poor villagers to suffer at the hands of the Beetle Clan. So Thaddeus and Li Kung strike up a deal. As payment for helping him in his time of need, Thaddeus will stay to help create weapons that Li Kung and his supporters can use in their uprising against the Beetle Clan. With any luck, they'll push the enemy out of their village and the torturous silver mining will stop! But in the process of preparing for battle...a more sinister enemy will be uncovered, one that will become unstoppable all because of an innocent oversight. Do the people of Tsaifu have a chance? Lets hope so!

Stand up Tsaifu! Now is your time!!

As amazing as the first Man With the Iron Fists was, this movie is totally on par!!! I love that I've been treated to so many amazing sequels lately! Just like in the first, I love the crazy stylized fighting and choreography - I think the first movie definitely pushed harder as far as the fight scenes go but Iron Fists 2 still has great action, so much violence!! I also love that this whole movie is set to a really cool hip hop soundtrack, a weird fit for a kung fu movie but it works so well! Not as much gore as the first movie, but definitely the same amount of sexy sleaze and gut-punching violence! My only issue? Much like the first movie, I had to rewatch the beginning of this movie a couple of times to get a full grasp of the plot that was being laid out - the beginning is super meaty! But honestly, with how cool this Kung-Fu sequel is, I didn't mind rewatching it one bit! Kung-Fu and martial arts movie fans, fans of killer Tarantino-approved movies are in for a treat. Long live the world of badass sequels!!!

Check out the trailer - you will NOT be disappointed!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

A Serbian Film

I've been deeply curious about this movie and its mysteriousness for over a year now. I first heard about it when a guy I was dating said we should watch it together, but I wasn't in the mood so we watched Adventure Time instead. I've watched the trailer for A Serbian Film a couple of times and couldn't really get a gauge on what to was obviously a horror movie, obviously violent, and obviously graphic as far as nudity and sex went but what else? Where's the plot?? I've been back and forth as far as committing to watching this movie, I kept finding something more interesting. But Sunday night, I was freshly home from a week of house-sitting and decided to commit. Well, now I'm angry because I seriously feel like I was robbed of several hours of doing anything else. Thanks A Serbian Film!

This post is going to be very EXPLICIT!!!! Lots of human anatomy words and blatant descriptions of terrifying happenings in the movie. 

Retired Serbian porn star Milos (Srdjan Todorovic) was a star in his day. He had the largest penis, the most intense sex drive, and treated his female co-stars like lowly whores - Milos was a sex god in his industry. But after Milos had a son with his beautiful wife Marija (Jelena Gavrilovic), he knew that the time had come for him to settle down. Plus, he had made so much money off of all of his films, he wouldn't have to worry about finances for quite some time! But one day he gets a call from one of his female co-stars - Lejla (Katarina Zutic) - about a possibly business opportunity for him. They meet for drinks and Lejla tells him, sure he has lots of money now but what happens in 10 years when he's hurting for cash and his kid is on the verge of going to college? Milos hadn't really thought that far ahead, but that's what Lejla is here for. She knows a man who is very interested in doing a film with Milos, so she arranges a meeting between them.

A little extra money definitely doesn't hurt...

The next day, Milos is driven to a gated mansion owned by a man named Vukmir. Vukmir (Sergej Trifunovic) is a self-proclaimed lover of film and he wants to do a special project with Milos. Vukmir is secretive and won't say much about a script, a plot, or any details about the story - Milos just needs to show up and get naked and "do his thing". Doesn't sound too difficult, right? Well, the first day of filming starts out very strangely. Milos is driven out to an orphanage where he receives oral sex from a woman who'd recently been beaten and how has tears rushing down her face. Milos is relaxing and getting into his groove when he notices a girl off to the side sitting in a chair watching!! Taken aback, Milos tries to push the battered woman off of him but instead she bites down on his penis and he is given instructions to HIT HER until she lets go! This horrible, this is disgusting, him a really nice check. Well. He used to spank women a lot in his previous films...that's kind of the same thing, right? And with so much money on the line Milos is torn as to what to do.

This is NOT what Milos had in mind for a comeback!

The next day Milos comes back to the mansion where he tells Vukmir that he isn't interested in having his image part of these bizarre films, he's just not comfortable. And that's when Vukmir unfolds his grand vision - he wants to take pornography to an entirely new level. He wants to show the world new forms of sexual debasement that cannot even be fathomed! And with that, Vukmir rolls film of another project he completed - which depicts a woman giving birth on a table, and a man taking her freshly birthed baby...and raping it. WHAT?!!?!! This man is sick!! Milos leaves in a rage - he will not be part of this disturbing phenomenon that Vukmir is trying to create. But Milos won't slip through Vukmir's grasp so easily. On his drive home, Milos is seduced by a gorgeous woman in a white nurse's uniform...who drugs him! And when Milos wakes up he is covered in blood and has no memory. What horrible things did he do while he was out? Did Vukmir guide him into committing more deplorable acts before the camera? And that's when the horrific images all start coming back to him...

What has Milos become?! And what has he done...

I have seen some pretty awful movies in my time. I have seen horrible CGI, flimsy plot lines, gore and nudity like you wouldn't believe! But this movie is the Crowned King of the Garbage Heap, and that is definitely not a compliment despite my Baroness of Gar-bage title. I love exploitation movies - I love movies that go over the top and push every possible boundary, but I find this movie to be completely unnecessary and without conscience. Movies that depict graphic sexual abuse towards children are an absolute NO in my book, and there was sexual abuse toward everybody and their father (literally) in this movie. What I hate more than anything about this movie is that it pushed too hard - like that comedian that thinks he's hilarious even though the entire room has gone silent. The original idea is great - get a retired porn star to do things for money, excellent idea! But adding in incest, pedophilia, necrophilia, rape, and extreme violence was far too much.

This movie has no class, and no relevance. But what enrages me further is that the director defends this movie with some flimsy story about how it's really an allusion to the Serbian government and cultural structure. Dude, you can say whatever you like but you could have made an ACTUAL movie about the Serbian government that didn't involve a father sodomizing his pre-pubescent son. No joke. I do not recommend this movie to anyone. I love trash and shock value, but this movie is too much and I hated it from start to finish. And as far as I'm concerned, the only people who claim to like it are those who are just trying to appear controversial and badass to their friends. Yup, I said it. LET'S FIGHT!! Overall, this movie is horribly made and has a terrible plot. Watch anything other than this. Or watch this, because it is on Youtube, and then join the masses of people who hate this movie. Welcome to the club, we're getting jackets made.

Got an hour and 45 minutes to waste? Give it a watch and then regret that decision.

THURSDAY NIGHT IS THE BEST NIGHT TO TUNE IN TO REAL PUNK RADIO!! Home to the Thursday Night Wrecking Pit, Real Punk Radio is your Thursday night destination for the best in Psychobilly radio programming. Starting tonight at 6pm PT Gone Mental will be kicking off the evening, and then at 7pm PT Zorch Radio takes over the reigns and rides out the evening til 10pm with the best in Psychotronic rock n' roll. Make sure to tune in to the Thursday Night Wrecking Pit tonight, where I will be talking about my experience with A Serbian Film during the Trash-Tastic Minute on Zorch Radio. So make sure to tune in to Real Punk Radio tonight!

Want to hear me get pissed on air? Tune in tonight. 

Wednesday, April 22, 2015


In my humble opinion, the 80s was the greatest time for movies. The horror was abrasive and gory, the comedies were offbeat and quirky, the romances were passionate and deep, the action was inducting crazy-hilarious graphics alongside their stunts and explosions....basically everything I could ask out of a movie can be found in this decade. Which is why I've had Heathers sitting at the top of my Netflix queue for quite some time now. I've always heard about how it was this crazy cult classic and I've seen tons of gifs on Tumblr depicting hilarious moments that definitely needed some context. And the magical day has finally come! I have seen Heathers! I understand the hype, and it is so very!

High school can be Hell if you're not in with the right crowd. But sometimes even the right crowd can start to seem wrong from the inside, and this is something that Veronica Sawyer is learning first hand. The most popular clique in Veronica's high school is made up of three girls that are all named Heather. Heather Chandler (Kim Walker) is the leader of the clique, she's the most popular and the most bitchy but everyone worships her - girls want to be her, and guys want to be with her. Next in the chain of command is Heather McNamara (Lisanne Falk), also blond and doesn't say a lot whoever she is just as bitchy as leading Heather. And then there's Heather Duke (Shannen Doherty), the quietest and most polite of the Heathers, it doesn't make any sense why she's actually in the Heathers other than the fact that her name is Heather. So here we have the Heathers, but why isn't Veronica glad to be part of their posse? Simple. The Heathers are horrible.

Best Fr-enemies!

Sure, every high school clique could use their popularity for good instead of evil - like in Clueless - but it's never that easy. With power comes evil, and leading Heather is the most evil of them all. She loves sending fake love notes to the geeky loner kids in school and faking that they're from popular boys, she loves outwardly expressing her disdain for anyone who isn't a Heather...and the rest of the Heathers just go right along with her nasty little agenda. But Veronica is reaching the end of her rope. She's tired of seeing people she used to be friends with getting treated like garbage by the girls who are supposed to be her friends. The Heathers never let up! But Veronica has hopes for something better...something like Jason Dean. Jason Dean (Christian Slater) is the sexy, mysterious new guy in school and he definitely catches Veronica's eye when he pulls a guy on the popular jerks at school and fires off a round of blanks at them! How very! Veronica can't help herself...what high school girl can resist a bad boy? But the thing that brings Veronica and Jason together is not what you would think.

A shared love of the same movies and music? Not for these two lovebirds!

Jason really zones in on Veronica's hatred for the Heathers, which she tries to laugh off saying that that it's just like hating her co-workers and her job is being popular. But one night Veronica finally has enough. After being dragged to a college party by Heather where she is hit on by jerks and drinks beers until she pukes, Veronica goes home and furiously writes in her diary that she is totally done! How could she give up her nerdy best friends for popular friends that she hates?! And it's Jason's idea to get back at lead Heather. The morning after the party Jason and Veronica slip into Heather's house to give her a prank hangover cure, but while Veronica thinks Heather is being offered a cup of milk and orange juice she actually drinks a glass full of rust cleaner!! And Heather falls over dead!!!! NO!!! Thinking quickly, Jason and Veronica quickly write a fake suicide note to make sure that this doesn't come off as a murder. Sweet, they're in the clear! Or are they?

"I killed my best friend..."
"And your worst enemy!"
"Same difference!"

Now that lead Heather is dead, she is all that anyone can talk about and is more popular than ever! Ugh, how gross. Now Veronica can't get rid of her, but hopefully time will pass and so will her memory. Back to business as usual, bitchy secondary Heather - now the leader of the Heathers - asks Veronica to go on a double date with her and a couple guys on the football team. The date sucks, the guys gets wasted in a cow pasture, and the next day the guys spread a nasty rumor about Veronica at school. Jason offers to help her get back at the guys...and once more these guys end up dead!! Veronica is horrified!! All these deaths were never supposed to happen!! But now Jason seems to be on a rampage, any time someone messes with Veronica they turn up dead at Jason's hands! It's like he's some kind of mad this the reason why he's moved from so many different schools? But Jason is so can Veronica say no to him? Or will she end up dead too???

Yeah, he's a mass-murdering creep...but he's HER mass-murdering creep!

I haven't seen a good dark comedy in quite a while, and Heathers totally sated my thirst. Lots of death, inappropriate wise cracks, and all the glories of the 80s - Heathers is a primo cult classic that borders between teen comedy and psychological thriller. And this movie holds one of the greatest lines in the whole world: "F*** me gently with a chainsaw!"! I highly recommend this movie for fans of trashy teen 80s movies with a violent twist... think of a Cry-Baby-ified version of Some Kind of Wonderful. Heathers is Some Kind of Hell Ride!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

The Rescuers

A couple of weeks ago, during one of my movie dates with favorite blogger buddy The CineMartyr, we watched The Rescuers Down Under. This wasn't a movie I was a big fan of as a child, but after watching it I realize that I wasn't a very bright child after all. After watching that movie, it made me think about the first movie: The Rescuers. I remember liking this movie a lot better, but it also scared me a lot so I didn't watch it much. And with the need to watch adorable mice save children again, I decided to revisit this classic and found it to be just as fun as when I was little.

In bright, bustling New York City we open our story at The Rescue Aid Society - a society comprised of mice from all over the world, similar to the human United Nations, that's sole purpose is to save children in distress. During today's meeting a message has been found floating in a bottle in the harbor, sadly however the message got wet and the only words that can be read are "Please help, Penny."Her heart aching for the poor child, the Hungarian representative Miss Bianca (voiced by Eva Gabor) instantly volunteers for the mission. Considering that this will likely be a dangerous mission, the Chairman (Bernard Fox) of the Rescue Aid Society suggests that Miss Bianca have someone accompany her - to which she chooses Bernard the janitor! Bernard (Bob Newhart) is taken aback, but also excited to finally be part of the Society...and to work alongside the beautiful Miss Bianca. But where to start?

Miss Bianca and Bernard are on the case!

Bernard and Miss Bianca decide to make a stop at Morningside Orphanage to see if there was any record of a little girl named Penny living there, and sure enough they find a box in a storage closet with Penny's name on it! But just as they're about to do some investigating, an old grumpy cat named Rufus (John McIntire) interrupts them. Rufus used to be best friends with Penny...but she's long gone now. Penny was sad that on every adoption day, some other little girl would get chosen over was like no one wanted her. Rufus did the best he could to cheer Penny up, but she ended up running away and no one had seen her since. The only clue that Rufus can give the mice is that he would sometimes see this trashy woman talking to Penny on the street, offering her rides sometimes - maybe she had something to do with Penny's disappearance? Rufus tells them that her name is Medusa and she owns a pawn shop not too far away, and with that Bernard and Miss Bianca go skittering off into the night once more.

"Maybe it's this way?"

Medusa's pawn shop is a messy place filled with all kinds of trinkets and things - it would take the mice forever to search for clues here! But they finally get a stroke of luck when they find a first grade school book on the office desk, and it has Penny's name inside! But the mice have to run and hide when Medusa comes crashing into the room with a large suit case, screaming at someone over the phone about having to "come down there and teach that little brat a lesson!". Not even thinking twice, Bernard and Miss Bianca try to hitch a ride in the suitcase but are thrown from her speeding car. All they know is that she is heading South to a place called Devil's Bayou and they need to get there too! So the mice make their way to the nearest airport and climb to the roof where they will be flying Albatross Air with the helps of Orville the Albatross (Jim Jordan), and together the threesome braves the elements and make it down to the deep South. And they find Penny!

Welcome to Devil's Bayou!

Penny (voiced by Michelle Stacy) has been kidnapped by Medusa and is being held captive on a beached steamboat by Medusa's dopey assistant Mr. Snoops (Joe Flynn) and Medusa's evil pet alligators Nero and Brutus. But what could Medusa want with a little girl? Legend has it that somewhere in Devil's Bayou, there lies a hidden diamond that is bigger than any other diamond in the world which is called the Devil's Eye. Medusa has combed the entire swamp with Mr. Snoops but they've come up with nothing so far. The only place they haven't checked is down a narrow hole in the ground which could possibly have their treasure. So every day, when the rushing waters inside the hole aren't rising too high, Penny is forced to go down the hole and search for the diamond...but she's no longer obeying Mr. Snoops' orders so now Medusa has to come down and persuade the little girl herself. Now it's up to Bernard and Miss Bianca to safely rescue Penny from the clutches of this crazy woman, her dumb assistant, and these two gators - it won't be an easy task! But with the help of some of their newly made swamp friends, they might just have a chance!

They need to get Penny and her Teddy away from this horrible woman PRONTO!!

This movie is so adorable and fun, but it's definitely as dark and creepy as I remember too. Leave it to 1970s Disney to strike fear into the hearts of young children! Something that draws me back to this movie are the precious characters - Bernard and Bianca are so sweet together, and I love the hillbilly swamp critters they make fun of....who all happen to get an extra charge drinking from their jugs of moonshine! And the suspense is so palpable in this movie too - guns blazing, alligators lunging and growing, rushing waters that threaten to drown and swallow up our beloved's so much! This movie is the perfect mix of sweet childhood nostalgia and heart-racing excitement, probably best to screen this one before handing it off to the kids though. Highly recommended for fans of vintage Disney, and animated movies with a bit more action than most.

Mandatory adulthood thing: revisiting Disney movies!

Monday, April 20, 2015

The Babadook

I finally got my regular weekends back, no more working 7-day weeks for me! And what does that mean? MOVIE FESTS!!! On Friday, my movie blogger buddy The CineMartyr and I synced up our schedules and indulged on a day of movie watching - this week it was my chance to pick the first movie, and Netflix has added some juicy new material so I went with The Babadook. Around Christmas time I saw a lot of people posting pictures and comments about The Babadook on Instagram and I was curious - it looked like a good "bump-in-the-night" kind of movie. And I was not disappointed!

Single mother Amelia (Essie Davis - what a cute name!) is struggling to keep her life together. After losing her beloved husband in a tragic car accident, Amelia has struggled with working through her grief and being brave for her young son Samuel. Working long days in a mental-care facility, Amelia doesn't come home to much rest either because her son is a total Hellion. Samuel (Noah Wiseman), like most young boys, is very active and imaginative but for whatever reason Samuel is waaaaaay too hyperactive for his mother to handle. He's always getting in trouble at school for either hurting other kids or saying rude/cruel things that bring other students to tears. And at home Samuel is no better! He's always screaming and kicking and wailing for his mother's attention...but Amelia has a hard time being stern with Samuel because that's the role her husband would have played....if he was alive. 

Such a "happy" looking family. 

One evening, not unlike any other, Amelia is tucking Samuel into bed and preparing to read him a bedtime story when Samuel grabs a book from his shelves that she's never seen before. No author or description on the covers, the book is bright red with a dark figure on the front with a large title called Mister Babadook. Not knowing what to anticipate, Amelia opens the book and begins to read... "If it's in a word or in a look, you can't get rid of the Babadook..." the story seems to be about some silly shy creature that lives in your closet and makes little bumping sounds...but then the story violently progresses and this Babadook character becomes some evil beast that infiltrates your house and kills you and eats you!!Fabulous - another sleepless night for Samuel, and a sleepless night for Amelia too. 

Looks like this book won't be getting another reading anytime soon...

The next day, Amelia tries to forget about the Babadook and the storybook but it's all that Samuel can talk about. He even tells other children at school and frightens them to the point where Amelia is called in and told that Samuel is going to be placed with a counselor and have individualized attention because of his behavioral issues. Outraged that her son is being singled out, Amelia pulls Samuel out of school and takes him straight home. But as the days wear on, Samuel will not let go of the Babadook story - he is convinced that the Babadook is in the house, and even starts shouting in the car as though the Babadook is tagging along for the ride! Amelia screams at Samuel, why can't he be normal, why can't he be like other little boys?!?! But then that night...three sharp knocks sounded at the door. "BA...BA...DOOK!!"Amelia tried to convince herself that it was just weird coincidence..but then she sees something skittering in the shadows. Could it be? But then she wakes up. 

Nope, no Babadook under here!

The next morning, it's just Amelia and Samuel...but Amelia is not her usual self. She's starting to see things - dark sharps and weirdly placed objects that look like they could make up The Babadook. And she's cruel! She would have outbursts before, but now she flies into flat out rages at poor little Samuel - he may be a horrible child but he doesn't deserve to be told that he should have died instead of his father in that car accident. Amelia's personality starts to change too - she takes Samuel to a doctor and begs for sedatives to help Samuel sleep through the night, which she feeds to him nightly. Amelia starts retreating into the house, she stops going to work and she abandons all her other duties - cleaning and cooking have completely stopped so Samuel's only real meal he gets every day is his sedative-laced ice cream. Something has hold of Amelia, and it's likely the Babadook. Could the book be right? Is there really no way to get rid of The Babadook and get Samuel's mother back? 

Back off Mr. Babadook!!!

Overall, I really liked this movie but it definitely had some low points to it. I don't want anyone to think this was a completely superb movie! When I saw this was an IFC movie, I figured it would either be ridiculously amazing like Dead Snow or Pontypool....or this movie would totally tank like Haunt. But The Babadook kind of fell in between for me - the first 40 minutes were extremely slow-paced, nothing interesting happened and I got so exhausted watching the Amelia and Samuel characters flounder and scream all the time. But once this movie got a little heated up with the slight appearances of The Babadook. It became downright eerie! I am so happy I watched this is broad daylight because WOW!! I loved that this movie focused more on the possession side and the whole "theater of the mind" aspect instead of outwardly creating some junky looking CGI ghoul that no one would fear. And I liked how the characters did eventually evolve and grow to love each other...but then the ending happened. And the ending is super weird. It doesn't totally ruin the movie but it doesn't leave you with a finalized feeling of victory. Overall, this movie was fun and I would recommend it for a 1-time watch but overall I don't recommend wasting the money. But the storybook on the other hand? I would buy THAT in a heartbeat! 

I love this creepy artwork so much!
Also, check out blogger buddy The CineMartyr's take on The Babadook!

Thursday, April 16, 2015


The first time I ever knew this movie was a thing was when I was attending a screening of Suspiria with my friend Jake Noose of Zorch Radio at the Grand Illusion Cinema in Seattle. While purchasing our tickets, I saw a poster for a future screening of Manborg in the window and I got excited! But I wasn't able to come back and see it. Since then, Manborg hasn't left my mind but I wasn't actively pursuing it...and then my movie blogger buddy Psycholiloquy sent me a copy and I couldn't say no this time!

Trashy Sci-Fi, one of my favorite flavors!

Hell has literally been released on Earth. Led by the sinister Count Draculon (Adam Brooks), his army of demon spawn have come to Earth to divide and conquer. In the throws of the Hell Wars, we meet a young soldier (Matthew Kennedy) who watches his brother die heroically on the front lines. Consumed by rage and grief, the young soldier grabs his gun and opens fire on the advancing demon spawn..but he's not quick enough. Count Draculon seizes the soldiers and holds him before a firing squad, but before he is put to death the soldiers vows that he will come back and rip the Count to pieces. And with that, he dies. Or does he?

The soldier startles awake with a fuzzy memory and weird sensations, including the fact that everything he looks at is red and digitized...what is wrong with him? And that's when he sees his reflection - he is no longer a man, he's a man-robot hybrid! But before he can explore this new robot body any further, he is captured by demon spawn officials and taken to a prison. It turns out that mankind was on the losing side of the Hell Wars, and Count Draculon and his minions now rule Earth. Humans are either used as a food source or for entertainment. And this man, this Manborg, will be used for the later.

Food source? Nah, too rich in iron. 

Manborg is thrown into a prison alongside 3 other humans - martial arts master #1 Man (Ludwig Lee), angry Aussie Justice (Conor Sweeney), and Justice's sister Mina (Meredith Sweeney). These prisoners are the returning survivors of an arena-style death match known as the TerrorOpticon that the demon spawn love watching, and now Manborg will be joining the humans in their next match up. Which is lucky for the humans because he helps them win, but this displeases Count Draculon. Manborg is then singled out for a solo match in the TerrorOpticon against a grisly, unbeatable beast known as The Champion...whom Manborg takes down with ease! Now Manborg has Count Draculon's full attention and can go on with his life's purpose - take down Draculon and banish Hell from Earth! Go Manborg, go!!!

If he can take down The Champion, who knows what else Manborg can do!!

The first time I watched Manborg, I was not amused. I thought it was pretty horrible and I never wanted to watch it again...but because this was a few weeks ago and I really wanted to give an accurate review I sat down to watch it again today. And I liked it! The graphics are cheesy, the claymation is hardly seamless, the characters and their voice overs are over the top and ridiculous...but everything comes together in this 80's Sci-Fi movie-esque kind of way that works and had me laughing! This is not a movie to be taken seriously - this is just pure dumb fun, which is exactly the kind of trash that I love! But the best part is the mock trailer at the end for the movie Bio-Cop. Someone needs to make Bio-Cop happen because HOLY CRAP DOES IT LOOK LIKE IT HAS HILARIOUS GORY POTENTIAL!!! Overall, Manborg is hilarious fun and I highly recommend it for fans of trashy sci-fi.

Curious about Bio-Cop? Check it out!

THURSDAY NIGHT IS THE BEST NIGHT TO TUNE IN TO REAL PUNK RADIO!! Home to the Thursday Night Wrecking Pit, Real Punk Radio is your Thursday night destination for the best in Psychobilly radio programming. Starting tonight at 6pm PT Gone Mental will be kicking off the evening, and then at 7pm PT Zorch Radio takes over the reigns and rides out the evening til 10pm with the best in Psychotronic rock n' roll. Make sure to tune in to the Thursday Night Wrecking Pit tonight, where I will be talking about my experience with Manborg during the Trash-Tastic Minute on Zorch Radio. So make sure to tune in to Real Punk Radio tonight!

Thursday Night Wrecking Pit kicks off at 6pm - be there!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Exodus: Gods and Kings

Crowned princes of Ancient Egypt Ramses (Joel Edgerton) and Moses (Christian Bale) were raised like brothers even though they are cousins. They grew up to be brave warriors and fought vigilantly in the battles that helped to secure Egypt as a reigning empire. But their lives are about to change drastically. Ramses father, Pharaoh Seti (John Turturro) is dying, and Ramses must be the man to take over the throne and take on more responsibilities. One of which, is checking in on the overseer of the slave village, Pithom, to see how much money he is squandering and how little work he is actually doing, as well as if rumors of a potential uprising might be on the horizon. Wanting to protect Ramses, Moses offers to go in his stead and see if there really is a potential of an uprising among the slaves. But instead of an uprising, Moses is met by something far more baffling.

The life that Moses leads is...not really his to lead. 

While interrogating a group of enslaved elders, one of them - Nun (Ben Kingsley) - learns Moses' name and shares a knowing look with the other men around him. He then passes Moses a not to come alone to a house after the sun is set...and here Moses learns about where he came from. Growing up, Moses was raised as a price of Egypt but the reality is that he was really born a lowly slave. The year that Moses was born, a prophecy was depicted as stating that a savior would rise up among the Hebrew slaves and free them from their years of pain and suffering. To ensure this would never happen, Pharaoh Seti ordered his guards to pillage Pithom and to slaughter any baby boys that were found. Thinking quickly, Moses' mother sent her daughter Miriam to the river with baby Moses in a basket with the orders that Miriam must float Moses to a place where he would be safe. And what better place than the palace?

It's palace or bust for baby Moses!

Baby Moses had been found and raised amongst the royal family while his sister Miriam looked after him from afar as a servant girl in the palace. Moses' entire life has been a lie. He is really Hebrew. These are his people...but he cannot give up his life of privilege and splendor for a life of labor and enslavement! Moses vows to himself that he will forget that all of this had ever happened...but Moses wasn't the only one listening to Nun's story that night. A pair of Hebrew slaves went to the overseer of Pithom with their findings, who then went to freshly appointed Pharaoh Ramses. And while Ramses wants to believe that this tale isn't true...he cannot deny that this lie of omission on Moses' part is considered treason. And with that, Moses is banished from the kingdom. Without a plan or an idea of what to do Moses, his horse, and his few belongings set out into the deserts of Egypt unsure of what the future will bring.

"Moses, you must go."

After many weeks of wandering, Moses happens upon a well where a group of women are being harassed by men with herds of sheep all wanting water. With one flash of his golden sword, Moses scares off the rude shepherds and the girls invite Moses to their village for food and water. Well one meal turns to spending the night, and then another meal...before Moses even realizes it he's comfortably living with these desert dwellers and working as a shepherd. He even ends up marrying one of the girls from the well that day - Zipporah (Maria Valverde). Together they have their own home and even a son, Moses has created a new life for himself. But one night while chasing after a couple of stray sheep in the mountains, his life takes on a whole new purpose. Moses gets caught in a mudslide and becomes trapped on the mountain side...but he is approached by a young boy who says that he needs Moses' help, that he needs a warrior; a champion. And behind this boy Moses sees a bush engulfed in blue flames that doesn't appear to be burning at all....could this be....

"Will you be my champion?"

Moses wakes up in his bed with a broken leg and a fever. Moses had always laughed at the idea of the Hebrew God, the God of Abraham, the God who was said to someday set the Hebrew people free. But now Moses is terrified - was this boy that he saw on the mountain really the Hebrew God in physical form? And he was asking Moses to be his champion? No..this is crazy...but now that he knows about his past Moses feels a sense of duty. Zipporah is enraged - Moses has never cared about her God before, and now he's claiming that he's being summoned to free the Hebrew slaves? But nothing she says will keep him home and Moses makes the journey back to the Egyptian kingdom. Moses goes into Pithom and tells the men that they will ready themselves for a rebellion - Moses trains the men and teaches them every military tactic he knows. But on the night that Moses' men attempt to attack the city it just shows that the slaves are not ready to take on the strong Egyptian armies. So what now?

What now, God? 

Once more, Moses is visited by the small boy who is enraged - Moses' attempts are feeble and not producing results. And Moses is just as angry! What is he supposed to do? He knows nothing about freeing slaves or fighting for their freedom, how is he supposed to do this? And the child says "Leave it to me." And then the wrath of God strikes down on Egypt. All the crocodiles in the Nile river attack one another, clogging the entire river with blood which thickly filters out into the marshlands where crops are grown. All of the fish in the rivers and the crops in the marshes die, bringing with them the horrendous stench of decay. An immeasurable number of frogs spring from the Nile river and coat the streets with their slimy, jumping bodies...and when they die too the city is overtaken with a thick layer of flies! Horror upon horror is unleashed upon Egypt where Ramses continues to hold onto the Hebrew people with a vice-like grip - he will not give them their freedom, he is stronger than any God of theirs! What will it take to make Ramses release the Hebrew people? And if they are ever freed, will their lifetime of suffering really end?

How far are you willing to go Ramses? What is it going to take? 

The first time I saw the trailer for this movie, my jaw hit the floor! A live-action version of the story of Moses, and it looks every bit as regal and incredible as I could wish! And considering how much I love The Prince of Egypt, I was pretty sure I would enjoy this movie - I don't know why I enjoy the story of Moses so much but I do! And this didn't disappoint in the least! Just like movies such as Gladiator, Troy, and Cleopatra - this movie is grand on a very large scale. The graphics, sets, and cast are HUGE! Everything is rich and extravagant, the terrors of the plagues are gruesome and terrifying, the battles are wild and daring, and Christian Bale's performance was so spot on! I think he was destined for this role. The only thing that I was slightly annoyed by was the lack of musical interlude like in The Prince of Egypt, but sadly real life doesn't have a lot of those so I do understand the absence. I watched this movie with my dad who is a devout Lutheran, and he was a bit perturbed at some of the creative liberties taken with the story of Moses but I couldn't care less. THIS MOVIE IS A TRIUMPH! And more people should see it, not because of the religious factor, but because it's a brilliant story and amazingly done!

Exodus: Gods and Kings is fantastic, I highly recommend it!!!