It (2017)

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My procrastination in watching the new It was twofold. First off, It is my favorite Stephen King book and Tim Curry’s Pennywise holds a special place in my heart as the scariest movie villain EVER. If I am scrolling through the guide and I see the mini-series, I’m dropping whatever I’m doing and watching it. So even though reviews were phenomenal, I was hesitating. I just didn’t want to be disappointed – which is why I’m avoiding The Dark Tower as well.

My second driver was my kids. My son is currently reading the book – or trying to. He is having a really hard time getting into it. I finally gave up the wait and we had a family movie night. (If you’re wondering if the 10 year old daughter was a factor – she wasn’t. NOTHING scares her.)

I needn’t have worried – the remake was enthralling. Bill Skarsgård fully reimagined Pennywise – his deranged portrayal will be the gold standard for horror villains of the 10s (that was awkward as fuck to type). There is room in my hard, little, blackened heart to love both the new Pennywise and Tim Curry’s portrayal…WHO, as a matter of fact, will be coming to Frightmare in 2019. Tickets already bought!

I fully support fast-forwarding the plot to the 80s. I also get why they moved around some of the plot points – making Ben the Historian, making Eddie a little less of a pussy, etc. The masterful turn though, was turning the kids into amateur detectives. Looking for Georgie gave them more of a motive to fight Pennywise – well done. I also support the things they left out – although, I was hoping to see the notorious gang bang scene rewritten as just kissing, which it sorta was? I also think the BJ scene would’ve worked, but I get why it wasn’t included.

By the way, I don’t watch Stranger Things, so I have no comparisons for you. (I used to have Netflix , but since moving out to BFE, my sad little 1.5mbps internet connection cannot handle the joy of Netflix.)

Now that casting has been announced and filming has started on the next chapter, I am DYING to see it. James McAvoy. Jessica Chastain. Bill Hader. Chapter Two is gonna be LIT.

Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!

You know, if Mark Cuban ran for president, I’d probably vote for him. Sure, he’s as big a dick as Trump, but he hasn’t filed for bankruptcy half a dozen times. That being said, I’d probably vote for David Hasselhoff before any of the assholes we have running right now.

In the first movie, Sharknado attacked LA. In the second movie, Sharknado hit New York. In this one, Sharknado starts in Washington DC and makes its way down the East Coast to Florida. First Sharknado hits Daytona (in the middle of the Daytona 500), then destroys the shit out of Universal Studios, finally ending up in Cape Canaveral to hitch a ride on a space shuttle – Space Sharknado!

There was plenty of product placement in Sharknado 3 – Subway, Xfinity, Universal Studios, Total Wireless – but the oddest product placement was for Benefit “They’re Real!” Mascara. (Seriously, it’s like they KNOW I also run a Beauty Blog.) One of the characters even loaded Benefit Mascara into her Machine Gun and SHOT A FUCKING SHARK with it. Now I know what to do with all my extra mascara!

So, there’s such a ridiculous amount of celebrity and politician cameos, that I started keeping track: Bill Engvall, Anthony Weiner, Maria Menounos, Mark Cuban, Ann Coulter, Lou Ferrigno, Jackie Collins, Rick Fox, Grant Imihara, Rhonda Shear, Hoda & Kathie Lee, Chris Jericho, Michele Bachman, Screech, Holly Madison, Tuvok, Lorenzo Lamas, Joey Logano and some other NASCAR driver, Jerry Springer, George RR Martin, the TMZ guy, Kim Richards, Penn & Teller, Kendra Wilkinson, Michael Winslow, Ray J – and no telling how many I missed because I was rolling my eyes.

Shockingly, the third installment is the best one yet. Best, as in most ridiculous, most nonsensical, most stupid…it had us all laughing our asses off. It’s definitely no surprise that they already teased Sharknado 4, giving the audience the option to choose Tara Reid’s character’s fate. You can guess what I chose – DEATH!

Mega Shark vs. Kolossus

First the Mega Shark fought a Giant Octopus. Then there was the Crocosaurus. Next, the Mecha Shark. And now…Kolossus.

Kolossus is Cold War era robot weapon, powered by red mercury. Why does Kolossus look like it’s made out of meat? It’s like when you lift the flap on the back of the box of bacon to check out the slices…What a coincidence that this giant robot happened to be released near Chernobyl at the exact time that Mega Shark needs a good ass kicking?

I was somewhat amused by Team Unicorn’s cameo in the beginning of the film. I just happened to recognize Clare Grant – Seth Green’s wife. What? I guess I stalk him on Instagram and have seen A LOT of pictures of her.

Illeana Douglas is the only somewhat known star in the film. I’ve always liked her as the quirky sister or best friend. Now she’s playing the quirky scientist. Watching her try to explain Mega Shark parthenogenesis was easily the highlight of a somewhat boring entry in the Mega Shark series.

Unfortunately, the week leading up to Sharknado 3 is full of bad shark movies…and we’re DVRing every single one of them. Consider yourself WARNED.

Jurassic World

I’ll spare you the lame jokes about how this summer’s crop of blockbusters is a throwback to the 90s – dinosaurs, terminators and vacations, oh my! (OK, maybe just one…)

Chris Pratt’s earnest animal trainer was the perfect foil to the rest of the cast’s perfectly clichéd villains. There was never a moment that the audience wasn’t rooting for Pratt as he struggled against D’Onofrio as the military-industrial complex war machine, Howard as Corporate Personhood, and Khan as the hubris of the human race to even try genetic engineering in the first place. The script felt like it was generated by a computer, it followed every Hollywood rule perfectly, hit the expected emotional notes and delivered the thrills. Even so, it was oh so fun to watch, even through the groan inducing allegory.

Chris Pratt deserves all the adoration he’s getting right now. He seems like a normal guy and a funny guy. I think I’d like to hang out with him and drink a beer. I feel like I want to ask him if he knows he is married to a planarian.

Really, I saw this weeks ago – on Father’s Day – but I struggled trying to decide whether or not Jurassic World is a “good” movie or not. I’m still not sure if it’s a “good” movie, but I’m certainly sure that it is an “enjoyable” movie that will be rewatchable for decades, just like the original.

Who decides whether a film is “good”? Critics or audiences? In today’s world, the answer is clearly audiences. With Jurassic World breaking box office records left and right, we’re surely in for at least 2 more sequels, if not 6 or 12. I only have one plea…please bring back Jeff Goldblum. And the leather. And the oiled chest.

 

The Lost World: Jurassic Park

I don’t remember much of 1997, but I know I somehow missed watching The Lost World. I think I’ve seen bits and pieces in passing, but I’ve never sat down and watched it intentionally…

Plan B…or in this case, Island B. Of course, there’s a second island, where they’ve bred the dinosaurs and allowed them to form their ecosystem since things went to shit in the first movie.

Jeff Goldblum’s new girlfriend, Julianne Moore, is studying the dinosaurs in the Lost World and he is horrified…and of course must go rescue her. If they had to center the sequel around anyone from the first movie, I’m glad it’s him. And I’m also glad that skinny Vince Vaughn was there to join him.

Lost World isn’t really a good film – bad in the way that only blockbuster sequels can be – retreading, yet twisting the original. (Like why can T-Rex all of a sudden smell it’s baby’s blood over miles, yet the first film hinged on T-Rex only being able to sense movement?) This led to an interesting conversation with my sister. We were coming up almost blank trying to think of examples where sequels were equal or better than the original. All we could think of were Terminator 2 and Ghostbusters 2. My husband added Godfather 2 to the mix. But they keep making them, because they keep making money – shitty or not. Did I mention that I plan to go see Jurassic Park 4 soon? I know I’m part of the problem – not the solution!

  

Jurassic Park

Jurassic Park made me start smoking. True story.

I clearly remember going to see Jurassic Park back in High School with my mom and sister (at the Tomball Cinema 7, no less). I ran into the vice principal’s son (who I later liaised with sadly and briefly), and he gave me a clove cigarette. That was the beginning of the end. I secreted it home in my pocket, lit incense and smoked it in my room. It was horrible, so of course, I later went to a Head Shop and bought a pack. Thanks, Steven Spielberg.

Storytime is over…since every 90s movie is getting a sequel these days, this weekend, we’re preparing the kids for Jurassic World…with a Jurassic Park marathon. I love having access to almost every movie ever made, all the time. I tried to explain Blockbuster to my kids, but they couldn’t even conceptualize it.

Mmmm…Jeff Goldblum at the height of his black leather sexiness. Ever since High School, my BFF has teased me about crushing on Jeff Goldblum. I had the last laugh…once when her teenage daughter was over, I had her watch Earth Girls are Easy with me. She gave Jeff a “Would Bang” rating. Ha HA!

I totally forgot that Samuel L. Jackson was in this – I want these motherfucking dinosaurs off this motherfucking island!

It was also really cool to watch the film after visiting Kualoa Ranch in Hawaii a few years ago. The scene with the T-Rex eating the Gallimimus was filmed there – and the dead tree they hid under was still there!

The movie is just as exciting now as it was 23 (!) years ago. It’s odd to see the antiquated computer technology compared to what would still be cutting edge genetic technology today. I was a bit worried that dinosaurs would look fake compared to today’s CGI, but they still look amazing.

I was surprised at how bored the kids were at the beginning of the movie. Today’s action-packed blockbusters have rendered them incapable of watching even 20 minutes of exposition in a film. Once the action started though, they were entranced.

   

Robocroc

Robocroc takes place in a magical place where a zoo, recreational lake, water park and ATV track are all within walking, actually swimming distance. Where is this magical place? I want to vacation there!

Actually, NO. I do not want to vacation there, because the water supplies ate all connected…which means the lake that contains the crocodile exhibit is connected to the recreational lake and water park…because how else would the Robocroc be able to swim freely between the three? I refuse to go down a waterslide contaminated by crocodile pee. Or whatever waste product comes out of a Robocroc.

Dee Wallace and Corin Nemec ate the name stars in the film, but I didn’t recognize anyone else. She was fantastic, but I had a hard time believing that Harold Lauder was a Crocodile Whisperer…

Super shitty and boring… No need to watch this one.

Blood Lake: Attack of the Killer Lampreys

A horror movie about bloodsucking fish…starring Shannen Doherty and Christopher Lloyd…made by The Asylum…on Animal Planet?

I know – I’m confused, too. Since when does Animal Planet show movies? Oh yeah…I forgot about Mermaids: The Body Found. Plus, they run a Puppy Super Bowl…it’s not like we’re talking about a bastion of hard-hitting journalism.

There’s quite a cast in this turd of a movie. Shannen Doherty plays the beleaguered mom role, married to the worst park ranger, husband and father ever – the guy from Baywatch: Hawaii. Christopher Lloyd is the mayor…yes THAT Christopher Lloyd. Scut Farkus is another park ranger, along with Mary Jane. (Another star from Nowhere – I love Rachel True.) I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the cameo by Mr. River Monster, Jeremy Wade. Not that these are BIG stars, but they’re beyond the usual quality. These movies must be a lot of fun to make, because I can’t imagine they are proud moments on anyone’s résumé.

The most important scene is the one in which the mayer – Christopher Lloyd – encounters lampreys in his toilet..while he’s sitting on the toilet. You don’t have to be a genius to figure out how the lampreys get out of the toilet. This brief scene makes the whole film worth it.

This excremental “horror” film actually scared my son. It bothered him enough that he asked to turn it off. (Even though he is beyond his nine years in many ways, he is thankfully still self-censoring crap that bothers him.) He would have loved the toilet scene, so I am sad that he missed it. We waited until he wasn’t around to finish watching it…with the six year old. She repeatedly kept asking if lampreys were real and we told her, “Yes…but they don’t do that.” I didn’t even bother googling it – they don’t crawl up people’s assholes, do they??? Did I lie to my daughter?

Ghost Shark

When a Ghost Shark eats you, where do you go?

I don’t mean metaphysically, as in what happens when you die. I mean literally – where do the parts of you that the Ghost Shark swallowed go? Are they instantaneously dissolved by Ghost Shark’s ectoplasm? Or are they digested more slowly, like a regular shark would? These are the type of questions that keep me awake at night.

Ghost Shark is everywhere – at the beach, at pool parties, on a Slip N Slide, at a bikini car wash…even in the drain. That’s right – Ghost Shark popped out of the pee trap under a sink and ate a plumber. Ghost Shark also visited a bubble bath, a sprinkler system…Ghost Shark even hid in a cup of water, which was, of course fatal to the drinker of said cup of water. Ghost Shark split that sonofabitch in half. Ghost Shark shoots out of fire hydrants and skulks through puddles. Ghost Shark will pop out of a toilet and suck your ass in like the worst meal from Golden Corral that you’ve ever had. When it rains…EVERYONE is fucked. There is no hiding from Ghost Shark.

SyFy is scraping the bottom of the barrel as far as stars go…Ghost Shark stars Bull from Night Court and the littlest Camden from 7th Heaven. (Side note: I fucking HATED 7th Heaven. There is not a single positive thing to be said about that sanctimonious pile of shit show. End of side note.)

Meh. I don’t foresee a Ghost Shark 2. I have high hopes for Robocroc and Ragin Cajun Redneck Gators, though.

Tasmanian Devils

The first five minutes was the best…Apolo Anton Ohno basejumps in New Zealand, falls into a hole and is impaled on a stalagmite that looks suspiciously like a Judas Cradle. It looked slightly less painful and embarrassing than appearing on Dancing with the Stars.

It’s all downhill from there. Winnie Cooper plays a hot American Forest Ranger, working in New Zealand…I assume because she is a Tasmanian Devil expert…or maybe she’s looking for Hobbitses? She encounters the rest of the basejumpers and carnage ensues as they’re stalked by the not at all cute Tasmanian Devils.

The titular Tasmanian Devils appear to be very similar to the Alamo Chupacabras – they basically look like Rottweilers undergoing chemotherapy. The devils also suffer from the same size malady as chupacabras – in some scenes, they are as big as rhinos, yet in other scenes, they easily fit inside a Jeep and Helicopter. Am I insane for expecting at least a little continuity of size? As I typed that sentence, I realized what a stupid expectation that is trouble have about Made-for-SyFy movies.

The best thing about this movie is that it forced me to IMDb the director, Zach Lipovsky. Mr. Lipovsky is directing the new Leprechaun reboot – Leprechaun: Origins! I am hesitant to be excited, as Warwick Davis is being replaced by some WWE Wrestler…Hornswaggle? I guess I should count my blessings it’s not a CGI leprechaun, right?