Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Burnt


Release year: 2015
Production company: 3 Arts Entertainment
Starring: Bradley Cooper, Sienna Miller, Daniel Bruhl, Emma Thompson, Uma Thurman

Michelin Star holding chef Adam Jones resurfaces after a long bought of sobriety to reenter the culinary world. Adam is determined to right the drug-and-alcohol-induced wrongs of his past and go after his third Michelin Star. But with so many bridges burned between Adam and the chefs he wants to work with, who in their right mind would give him another chance? Those who see his massive potential, that's who. But maybe it's not the other chefs that Adam has to worry about standing in his way, but rather his die-hard need for perfection that could cost him the elusive third star.

This movie was a complete blind-buy at Target, I had no idea it even existed but  the cover art lead me to believe this would be a fun foodie movie. And it was, but man was it also intense! Emotions fly really high and the tension is palpable...it's almost like the movie Southpaw collided with an episode of Top Chef.

The most intense foodie movie I have seen to date - WOW!!

I absolutely love Bradley Cooper's character in this movie. I've always thought of him as a pretty one-note actor just because of his comedy performances and because I was not a fan of Silver Linings Playbook, but he showed some killer range in this movie! I also loved that this movie was so fast-paced and intense - I'm so used to foodie movies that are all about passion and love for food, which this has too. Just on a slightly crazier level. This movie was definitely an emotional roller coaster, tons of triumphs and failures and heart-wrenching moments - I was on the edge of my seat for a lot of it! Granted, because it is a modern foodie movie it can get a touch pretentious at times but... I'm not that upset about it!

I'm sorry for doubting you Bradley Cooper! It'll
never happen again!

Burnt gets a 4 OF 5 must own for fans of dramas, foodie movies, and those who love Bradley Cooper. He's stellar in this movie!

Love, love, LOOOVE this one so much!!!

Monday, March 20, 2017

Today's Special

 
Release year: 2009
Production company: Inimitable Pictures
Starring: Aasif Mandvi, Jess Weixler, Naseeruddin Shah

A young sous chef named Samir (Mandvi) for one of New York's top restaurants dreams of achieving greatness in the culinary world. But every time he tries to express his culinary point of view, the head chef of the restaurant shepherds him back into place. So Samir quits his job, buys a plane ticket to Paris, and heads to Queens on his way to the airport so she can tell his family that he is finally following his dream! But while trying to talk to his family, Samir's father suffers a massive heart attack! With his father unable to run the family's traditional Indian restaurant the responsibility falls on Samir to keep things afloat...until he realizes he knows nothing about running an Indian restaurant! But with the help of an eccentric cab driver (Shah) and a chef he used to work with (Weixler), maybe Samir will learn how to run his own kitchen and his own life!

I love foodie movies that are also double as rising-to-the-occasion movies!

This movie was such a delightful find on Netflix! Combining the foodie fun and comedy of both No Reservations and The Hundred-Foot Journey, Today's Special was so much fun! Filled with delightful, light-hearted comedy and cute little romantic moments..it's the perfect combination of romantic comedy and foodie movie! And there's so much soul to this movie too! I think it's just an Indian foodie movie trait, there is so much life and vivaciousness to be had! And even though this movie did get a little overly silly at times, I would still recommend this one again and again.

Today's Special gets a 4 OF 5 must own for those who love Indian foodie movies, foodie movies in general, and for romantic comedy lovers!

Sunday, March 19, 2017

He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not


Also released as: A La Folie...Pas Du Tout
Release year: 2002
Production Company: Telema
Starring: Audrey Tautou, Samuel Le Bihan

A young art student is completely head over heels in love with her brilliant doctor boyfriend. She sends him paintings and little gifts, they attend parties, and are even planning to take a romantic vacation. But there's one problem: her doctor is married. And while the artist remains hopeful that her doctor will leave his wife, as time goes on that proves to not be the case...and she develops a mission to make her doctor solely hers. But then halfway through, the film switches to the doctor's point of view and we see that this romance between himself and the artist is not nearly the same story on his side of things...

It's so weird seeing Audrey Tautou be anything
but cute...but she still rocked this role!

This is a movie that has been near and dear to my heart ever since I saw bits and pieces of it on HBO as a kid and I became fascinated by the idea of movies being in other languages. Don't judge me, for some reason I didn't realize that other countries had movies in their native languages... Acting like Fatal Attraction meets Amelie, this movie is delightfully quirky but also gets plenty dark in some places too which keeps the movie interesting and a little intense all throughout.

I love that the whole feeling, while intense, still stays light and fun. Sure, our heroine is crazy but you still love her! I also love how this movie dramatically reverses and changes perspective so we get to see how different their relationship is from each side - what a thrill ride! I literally love everything about this movie!

From crazy cute to just plain crazy...this movie is an
intense ride, and worth every second!

He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not gets 5 OF 5 must own for those who love an unconventional French romance movie with a thriller twist. It's literally unlike anything else I've ever seen....now I just need to get my hands on a DVD copy and my life will be complete! Well...as complete as a movie addict's life can get ha ha!

Saturday, March 18, 2017

31


Release year: 2016
Production company: Bow + Arrow Entertainment
Starring: Sheri Moon Zombie, Jeff Daniel Phillips, Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs, Meg Foster, Kevin Jackson, Malcolm McDowell

A group of rag tag carnies are on their way to their next job when their van is attacked in the middle of nowhere by a pack of foreboding looking clowns! The carnies are taken to a large grimy warehouse where they are taken hostage and forced to play a terrifying game called 31. In this game the carnies must make their way out of the warehouse alive…while trying to avoid being slaughtered by a series of murderous clowns periodically released into the warehouse with the carnies! Except that these carnies aren’t going to scatter like rats when times get tough, they’re going to fight back and win this game!


\
Gutting a couple clowns here and there, I'm on board!

What a crazy movie! I have been anxiously waiting for 31 for so long now, and I practically lost my mind when my boyfriend sent me a blu-ray copy for Valentine’s Day. I joked that he must really love me because he hates Rob Zombie with every fiber of his being…but I would like to think this movie could change his mind if he were to watch it. 31 was super cool!

Everything about 31 was 10000% Rob Zombie gold! We’ve got the zany, vulgar, over-the-top characters that are key to every Rob Zombie movie all trying to muddle their way through a plot TEEMING with gore and violence that are both continuous and NASTY!! All mixed with an old school soundtrack reminiscent of the 70’s…this movie has got that Grindhouse flair that I always crave! But none of this compares to the one clown killer that made my skin crawl. His name was Doom-Head and he is played by Richard Brake…and oh my god did I love him! He has the most unnerving monologues, and he’s genuinely insane! He pushed the horror limits as a character and I was transfixed every time he came on the screen! More Richard Brake please!!


HE PUNCHED HIMSELF IN THE FACE!! SO BRUTAL!!

Now, 31 definitely won me over – I’m sure that fact hasn’t been lost on you – but there’s also something weird about this movie too and I don’t really know what it was. There were moments when things became…intense I think? And the magic curtain was lifted and the movie’s charm waivered. I don’t know if maybe Rob Zombie was trying too hard or if there was some kind in the plot that didn’t add up but there were moments when I would stop and be like “Wait. Is this actually a good movie?” I really don’t know how to explain it better than that.. and it’s probably not even a real thing that happened. I was pretty iffy when I first started watching Lords of Salem and now it’s one of my favorite witchy movies. Maybe I need to spend more time with 31, and I won’t complain about that!

31 gets a 4 OF 5  must own for those who love outlandish horror movies or who have been waiting for Rob Zombie’s next project! Down the road, it’ll probably earn a 5 of 5 but I still need to check out this weird magic-losing thing more. What is it??? Let me know if you felt it too! It would be nice to know that I’m not totally crazy and on my own in feeling like this.

What did you think of 31, I want to know if you're in love
or also still undecided. 

Friday, March 17, 2017

Little Mermaid


Release year: 2016
Production company: Indie Rights Movies
Starring: Rosie Mac, Matt Martin, Roxie Blum, Erin Marie Garrett, Lee Hudson

Based on the Hans Christian Anderson classic fairy tale, a mermaid (Mac) trades her voice to a Sea Witch in exchange for legs so she can pursue the man she loves, who happens to be a human. But when he turns out to be a real jerk and abandons the mute mermaid in a diner, an on-looking waitress steps in to save the day. The waitress takes the mermaid to live in a loft with her photographer best friend where she will be taken care of. Despite being unable to speak, the mermaid gets a job as a dancer in a club and a friendship begins to grow between herself and the photographer. It doesn’t take long for friendship to grow into love…but the mermaid only has a couple of days left on land before she must return to the sea. Can she make the Sea Witch understand and let her stay on land with her new love? Or is her wish too much to grant?

Feeling like a seamless combination of The Little Mermaid meets the 2011 re-imagining of Sleeping Beauty, this was a different and honest take on the classic fairy tale…and the most honest too! Little Mermaid shows the true heartbreak and grit of the fairy tale – how she is manipulated and cajoled and sees that the human world is not as fantastic as she had believed it would be. Wow! I also loved the casting and the characters in this movie – Rosie Mac was such a beautiful choice for the mermaid, and I loved her photographer boyfriend…he was so kind and sweet to her! What an amazing, random find on Amazon Prime!


This gorgeous girl was destined to be a mermaid! I am so in love!

Little Mermaid gets a well-deserved 5 OF 5 must own for those who love romantic indie dramas with a fairy tale twist! The whole movie felt like a romantic dream, I didn’t want it to end! But be warned, this movie is so sad and heartbreaking at the same time… I cried really hard. But it was completely worth it, I would watch this over and over again because it is so perfect.


Magic, romance, tragedy, mermaids....Little Mermaid is perfect!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Death Race 2050


Release year: 2017
Production company: Universal 1440 Entertainment
Starring: Malcolm McDowell, Manu Bennett, Marci Miller, Burt Grinstead 

In an attempt to curb the ever-growing population in the year 2050, an extreme sporting even has been created that sends crazy drivers on a murderous rampage across the country. The drivers earn points for the number of and types of pedestrians they hit during the race, and the whole thing is televised for the nation’s enjoyment. But when the favored veteran driver goes rogue and stops performing the way the government wants him to, the government must reign in their driver before he exposes a dangerous federal secret.

When my friend Jake Noose told me that this was on Netflix and he loved it, I knew I had to see it! Jake has introduced me to tons of excellent trash over the years – including the original Death Race 2000 – so this was bound to be a great watch if he recommended it so highly. Well, that’s not the case. Either Jake had a lobotomy I didn’t know about or we watched two totally separate movies on Netflix because Deathrace 2050 was a stinking heap of GARBAGE!


Are you enthralled by all this fast-paced energy? Well you shouldn't
be. Because there is none. 

This movie employs some of the worst, over-computerized CGI I have ever seen. Granted, there are lots of movies that overuse on CGI, Manborg and Kung Fury instantly spring to mind, but they employed CGI in a tasteful manner. The same cannot be said for Deathrace 2050. It was like watching your best friend’s crappy, homemade video game they’re making for some computer class they’re taking at the local community college – it’s painful, it’s unnecessary, and taking a bullet is probably much easier.

CGI aside, the characters are also horrible. Over the top, blown up, failed attempts at crazed stereotypes that don’t hit home at all. Okay we have a crazy Southern white chick decked out in Confederate flags and praising Jesus every time she wipes her butt. Why should I care? There’s also the black popstar wearing enough gold chains around her neck to make Mr. T call her tacky, constantly spouting off her new “hit” single that is really just the same three words screamed out in different succession….someone kill me please. AND ALL OF THE CHARACTERS ARE LIKE THIS!! You don’t want to root for any of them, you don’t care for anyone…so why bother watching? Also, the whole joke about our overly macho leading man living alone with a cat? It’s just not funny. That’s not a major issue in the movie, I just found it annoying and dammit if I’m not going to load my gun with ALL my bullets before taking my shots!


Not funny, not fun, and definitely no combination
of the two!
Now, before I start sounding like too much of a negative Nancy I will say that this movie has one good quality: Malcolm McDowell stars in it. And that’s not even that fantastic because he’s been in a lot of junky movies lately. I know this is a Roger Corman movie and he is not known for producing gems, but I had dared to hope! Racing movies are so basic and he still found a way to kill this one in the worst possible way – this movie was straight up murdered and we are here to witness the unfortunate carnage.

Deathrace 2050 gets a 1 OF 5 must own for fans of trashy racing movies…meaning you should not own this movie. It’s an insane waste of time and I don’t recommend it to anyone. I couldn’t even finish it – I realized at the 40 minute mark that I’d spent a major portion of the movie scrolling through Instagram. A really bad sign. Nice try Roger Corman, better luck next time!


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 9pm with the best in Psychotronic rock n' roll. So make sure to tune in to Real Punk Radio tonight!


Avoid a stinker or a movie and tune into a 
show that ACTUALLY rocks!!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Salem


Release year: 2014
Production company: Beetlecod Productions
Starring: Shane West, Janet Montgomery, Seth Gabel, Ashley Madekwe

Salem, Massachusetts is in the throws of turmoil during the infamous time of the Salem Witch Trials. Seized in a panic, townsfolk keep turning up hexed or dead and it's believed that witches are the cause of it all. War hero John Alden (West) has joined forces with the sensitive, logical Reverend Cotton (Gabel) who plans to find the witches in a humane way as opposed to burning anyone accused of witchcraft. But the one person who they are looking to find is the one person that John Alden doesn't want to accuse - his old flame Mary Sibley, the now-wife to a powerful town official in Salem. While Alden and Reverend Cotton run all over Salem trying to find an explanation for all the strange occurences happening within Salem, Mary Sibley and her witchy handmaiden Tituba (Madekwe) mask their efforts to call forth the Devil without drawing too much attention to themselves.

This was a show that I wanted to like so so badly, and at first it totally won me over! When I first started watching Salem on Netflix, I was instantly sucked in for the first couple of episodes - the show felt like a mixture of The Crucible, and The Tudors meets American Horror Story: Coven; just so much danger and magic and sex and creepy eeriness!! But, the magic didn't last for long. Pretty soon the introduction of disappointing CGI came in and started killing off the show for me. Then we started getting more characters brought into the show that...take away from the plot. And then we have the episodes that drag on where nothing interesting happens - this reminded me a lot of American Horror Story: Murder House. If you've got something to say then say it and stop dragging it out! But Salem has plenty of good points too!


Stop looking so gloomy! I said the show has good points too!

This is a REALLY dark and sinister show! Salem is not afraid to get Satanic, gory, sexual...pretty much all the things we are looking for when we talk about the traditional witch stereotype. There are some awesome practical effects worked in, plenty of gory torture scenes, and some just plain creepy content. I loved that so much! I just wish it all had been more consistent. I get that television shows strive for longevity...but when there's no soul left then what's the point? It was a fine show, but after Episode 3 I was pretty much tapped out and after season 1 ended I had no desire to go back and watch more.


ALSO! Hello Shane West!! I don't know where he's been hiding
but wherever he was did him good - LOOK AT HOW BEAUTIFUL HE IS!!!

Salem gets a 3 OF 5 must own for those who are into supernatural-horror based tv shows. Honestly, if you're really into the whole witch craze that's going on lately then you probably will be pretty excited about this show so I suggest giving it a shot. One episode doesn't hurt, right?