Friday the 13th: Part III

 

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Although released to the theaters in 3D, Part III is one the most boring installments in the series.

The film wastes so much time with the motorcycle gang. Why even bother having them harass the kids at the convenience store, other than to show what pussies the kids are? Or maybe it was just an excuse to add some unsympathetic victims to the body count? Or a deus ex machina to get gasoline out of the van?

This is the film that gives Jason his iconic Hockey Mask, stolen from Shelly, the prankster.

The final girl, Chris, had previously survived an encounter with Jason in the woods…but when was that? Was it in-between the first and second films, when he was mourning his mother? And why is she imagining Mrs. Voorhees (with her head) dragging her into a lake at the end?

We DVRed this one for the kids off SyFy and it’s edited all to hell. We actually got the whole series, up to Jason X in one shot…so I guess they’ll miss out on all the good stuff.

The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water

Even though it’s only February, I’m going to go ahead and call it – Sponge Out of Water is the most terrifying film of the year. Why? It has a fucking talking dolphin in it.

I fucking hate dolphins. They are the Bill Cosby of the ocean world, trying to lure unwitting swimmers into their underwater rape caves. Dolphins have NO business in a children’s film. It’s a small consolation that the hellspawn dolphin appears to have been voiced by Tim Curry, although I could be wrong.

Dolphin notwithstanding, Sponge Out of Water was a pretty cute film. My son picked it to go see for his 10th birthday. It was either Spongebob or Jupiter Ascending…I’m glad he chose the Sponge, because Jupiter Ascending looks boring.

I laughed my ass off when Bikini Bottom went all Road Warrior – Squidward in ass-less, er tentacle-less chaps! I also noticed a little Clockwork Orange fishy!

There was also a funny Shining moment. My kids laughed, but they had no idea what they were laughing at…

From the commercials, I was expecting more of the film to take place in the real world. I was bummed that only the last 20 minutes were in the real world – that was the best part! We did see it in 3D – at least the cartoony part was in 3D, too. My husband laughed at me when I reflexively ducked Spongebob’s bubbles. Ass.

I had no idea that Antonio Banderas was in it either. Even as a hairy, dirty, stinky, gross pirate…he’s still pretty hot. There’s something wrong with me, isn’t there?

The only thing that was missing was David Hasselhoff. I would have traded that fucking dolphin for a Hasselhoff in a second.

The Wizard of Oz (3D)

Never before have I written a second review of a film. Not so much out of pride or any kind of belief that my reviews exist as the “final word” on the worth of a film…it’s more because I’m kind of lazy. (Or quite possibly…really fucking lazy.) The 3D re-release of The Wizard of Oz deserves a second review…not only because my original review was written 15 years ago, but because it truly is like watching a completely new film.

The images were so crisp and clear that it was almost detrimental to the experience. Seriously, I could see the edges of every munchkin’s baldcap, the fine edge of the lion’s wig and even the tin man’s white undershirt! Obviously, 3D wasn’t a consideration when this movie was originally filmed, so there’s nothing flying at your face or whizzing over your head. Even so, adding 3D wasn’t a total waste. Glinda’s bubble seemed to be really hanging in the air above us. Any scene with red smoke looked like some asshole had dropped a smokebomb in the front of the theater. Simply dazzling.

In my original review, I whined about having to share my Oz experience with a theater full of people. I wouldn’t say I’ve mellowed over the past decade and a half – I still loathe most theater audiences. But my selfishness over Oz has certainly decreased. When I found out about the 3D re-release, my first thought wasn’t, “I’ve gotta go see this,” but, “I’ve gotta take the kids to see this!” That’s right, my kids are just as obsessed with all things Oz as I am. My son has seen nearly every movie even vaguely Oz related – for several months, he watched The Wiz every day. His newest fixation is Oz Monopoly. My daughter is going to be Dorothy with sparkly boots for Halloween this year, wearing MY Dorothy dress, from when I was 5. I’ve done quite a good job of brainwashing them…and even though they watch the DVD at least once a week, they sat there like me, eyes wide in rapt attention at the 3D version. No screaming at them to be quiet, the only talking was to demand more candy out of my gigantic mom purse. That right there was worth the $14 a head admission price.

Oz the Great and Powerful

So did anyone else notice that Oz the Great and Powerful basically has the same plot as Army of Darkness? No? Just me?

Think about it. A man is whisked away by a cyclone/swirling vortex and transported to another time and place. The locals immediately recognize the newcomer as their prophesied Savior. At first, the newcomer is only in it for the chicks and other benefits…but as he gets to know the locals, he decides to fight the evil that is threatening them. The newcomer rallies their defenses and trains the locals using his otherworldly technology. After a fierce fight, the newcomer defeats the evil and saves the day, ending with a kiss…that’s BOTH films in a nutshell. Of course, that’s an oversimplification of both films, but you see what I’m getting at…I couldn’t stop paralleling them right there in the theater as I was watching.

Now for the $64,000 question – did I love the film? To quote every Romantic Comedy ever made, I loved the film, but I’m not IN love with the film. I’m IN LOVE with The Wizard of Oz and there can never be another. That being said, I did enjoy Oz the Great and Powerful, liked it and will probably buy the DVD. It might not be better than Return to Oz, but then again, it might be. Nostalgia fuzzes my mind and I have to remind myself that I’m not IN love with every film I loved as a kid. (Howard the Duck, I’m looking at you.)

I loved almost everything about the film though. I loved starting off the film in black and white like the original, but totally dispensing with the “it was all a dream” nonsense, which has always annoyed me. I liked Raimi’s not-so-subtle nods to his past films – “You’re all going to die!” and those rather rapey trees…and of course, Bruce himself. I liked the cast. Michelle Williams was underwhelming, but Mila Kunis was good enough to make up for it. Although she’s no Natalie Portman, I would totally have a girlcrush on her…if not for her exasperatingly disgusting taste in men. In fact, there was only one thing that sent a colossal bug up my ass…the romance. Denouement driven by romance sends me over the edge into bugshit nuts territory. Unless it’s The Princess Bride, I absolutely do NOT want to see a film ending with a…I’ll stop before I get carried away and say too much.

I was shocked by the remarkable restraint in marketing tie-ins with the film. I actually only noticed two – World Market sent me a few emails referencing a contest and my absolute favorite make-up – Urban Decay – released Glinda and Theodora themed eye shadow sets. WANT!

Of course my kids loved it, although the five year old had a bit of a problem keeping her 3D glasses on for the whole film. She made it about halfway through. The 3D effects were pretty to look at – especially the paper-cut style opening credits, but I’m looking forward to seeing how it looks on the TV at home. I’m guessing it will hit cable by the end of the summer? Oh…and they already announced a sequel. Hmmmm…where can they go with this story?

  

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

I’m torn by this movie. Don’t get me wrong, I liked it…but I don’t know that it absolutely HAD to be made.

Let me be clear, I don’t remember much shit from reading The Hobbit. I remember Gollum and I remember big fucking spiders. I do remember that half the dwarves die, so I am not looking forward to how upset my son will be when we take him to see the next film. At first, I was puzzled by all the musical numbers. Then I remembered one thing about reading The Hobbit…I remembered pages and pages of poems and songs that I skipped because I thought they were dumb and boring. Heh. Even in 3D, the songs were still dumb and boring.

Most of the reviews and articles I read about The Hobbit were negative, which was surprising to me. Then I realized that most of the articles were likely written by movie critics…a person who is paid the same amount to review The Hobbit as to review silly twatter like Twilight movies and Oscar contenders like Argo and Zero Dark Thirty might not have a neat box in their head to fit The Hobbit into. It’s not likely to win as many Oscars as Return of the King, but it’s not silly shit like Twilight, either. I cannot even figure out how to categorize it. Is it fantasy? Sure, but it’s also a book adaptation and an adventure story and a film by one of my favorite directors and also a remake of something from my childhood. Is it for kids or adults? It’s PG-13, but I didn’t think twice about bringing my 7 year old. It’s got eye popping special effects, but also odd musical numbers. So I can’t knock that some critics would be annoyed that they have to sit through The Hobbit, a mere decade after sitting through the long, long, long Lord of the Rings trilogy. It’s also possible that seeing every 3D movie that comes out takes away the newness of the technology. The Hobbit is only the second 3D movie I’ve gotten to see. My 7 year old has seen more 3D movies than I have. Maybe I’m not yet jaded by the fact that EVERY film that comes out now is available in 3D?

So ultimately, I enjoyed the film, although a few moments had me annoyed. The one reservation I have is whether there is really enough story to make into 3 films. (Note that I said “story”, not special effects. I have no doubt there are enough special effects for a dozen more movies.) My son absolutely loved it, so I had him write a review for it. He was super pissed that he is going to have to wait a whole ‘nother year to see the next one.

Martin Freeman was made to be a hobbit. He looked so much like the cartoon version of The Hobbit, it was disturbing. After playing Arthur Dent, he has cemented his status as a nerd icon. Even so, I still have a hard time seeing him as anyone other than Tim Canterbury.

Is it creepy that I found Thorin Oakenshield sexy? I’m thinking it’s because he looked a little like Rob Zombie. That’s the only explanation I could come up with, because his character was kind of a dick. The rest of the dwarves were not sexy…not even a little bit.

Back in 2003, I predicted that The Hobbit would come out in 2009. That was a long shot timeframe…and I was still off by three years. Should I throw out a date for The Simarillion? 2020?

  

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

The hobit was a 5 star production. It was a kind of scary movie. But I loved it. I think you should go see it. Now don’t get me wrong but the hobit is 60 years before Lord of the Rings. There are 3 wizards and their names are Sayramon, Gandalf and Rajagast. There are also 2 wizards that aren’t in the movie that are blue. I don’t know their names.