Friday, 29 February 2008

The Contract

We've been watching some movies online with our NetFlix account, and tonight I found a film I had never heard of called The Contract starring Morgan Freeman and John Cusack. Didn't even read up on the film to find out what it was about. Morgan Freeman and John Cusack was good enough for me. Man, oh man, was I wrong!

Cusack plays an ex-cop out on a camping weekend with his teen aged son. Freeman plays a stupid hitman who gets caught after trying to kill some one with his Jeep. I say "stupid" because that seems like a really stupid way to kill some one. Especially for a world class assassin. He semi-escapes and gets caught by the father/son duo in the middle of the Washington wilderness. Oh, and not to nit pick, but Freeman gets pulled out of a raging river in a sports coat completely dry. Production value and continuity have a lot to do with the overall quality of a film, dontcha think?

The first real obstacle they face is a several hundred foot cliff that they have to descend in the middle of what must be the worst rain storm ever to hit the great North West. It's fucking pouring! They do this without any rope, climbing equipment or any possible chance...but they do it. In the dark. Don't they know that Morgan Freeman is like 70 years old or something?

Lots of Keystone Cops action abounds and the criminals aren't much smarter, but a bond begins to form between captor, son and captive. Seems to happen that way in the movies. A plot to assassinate the President, maybe, soon develops, but its kept behind the scenes so you wonder what really is the whole point of the film. I guess that John Cusack needed to pay off a huge credit card bill or something to take this role. It's the only reason I could think of.

It's also a little funny to hear John Cusack argue with someone about the morality of being a hitman, when John Cusack played the coolest hitman ever in, most likely, the coolest hitman movie of all time in Grosse Pointe Blank. Yeah, I like to take an actor's past screen roles and apply them to everything else that they do. Cusack will always be Martin Blank and Freeman will always be that guy from The Electric Company. Thats the way it goes.

Oh, and a ridiculous love interest appears in the 3rd act of the film. Every crappy movie cliche appears now to be in play. Bad acting, bad production value, bad fucking movie. All in a real "made for TV" kinda way. Stay away from this P.O.S. if at all possible.

I'm wanna go rent a good movie from a good video store - Randall

Tuesday, 19 February 2008


I really don't have any thing tremendously bad to say about this film. I know that is a bit out of the ordinary for a post on this blog, but there was not much to really hate about this film. It just wasn't very good and you probably would be better off taking a nap than sitting through this bad boy for an hour and 45 minutes.

I like a no-nonsense, no-brain action flick just as much as the next retarded guy. This one seemed to fit the mold, and it was about Native Americans fighting Vikings. What could be more fun than that? Well, a nap could have been more fun. One with a highly erotic dream, perhaps.

Historical inaccuracies? Sure thing. No one really knows what occurred when the Vikings came to Vinland back in the day. Maybe they were fairly peaceful. Trading for lumber to bring back to Greenland or something. Maybe they were brutal killers as portrayed in the film. No one can really know. And they probably didn't dress like rabid fans of the Oakland Raiders, but they sure looked mean.

The fact is that this is an action film and action films need two things. A bad guy and a good guy. The film-makers, having decided that the Native Americans were going to be the good guys, found that it was a necessity to make the sea-faring Vikings the bad guys. Mission accomplished.

The only real problem that I had with the film is that for something in the action genre it was kinda boring. I worked real hard not to fall asleep during some of the more important sections of the film. That, my friends, ain't good. It did, however, look pretty good while bringing the boredom.

So, if you are in the mood for a good-looking, boring action you go!

One additional note: I enjoy Clancy Brown in just about everything he does. Lots of respect for a character actor that always seem to rise above his material. Not in this one. His portrayal was the definition of one-dimensional and he usually does much better than that. Shame on you, Kurgan! And this from a guy whose first screen role was Viking Lofgren in Bad Boys. You would have thought he would have used that as inspirition for the role or something. Uh, I really don't know what I'm trying to say there. I think it's because this review is more boring than the movie was. Sigh. Move along, people. Move along.

Tuesday, 5 February 2008


Here we go into the way-back machine.

I've got some fond memories of my youth. Seeing Star Wars for the first time. Fishing for bluefish with my Dad. Watching the Yankees win the World Series in 1977. H.O.T.S. used to be of those fond memories. I just watched it again tonight for the first time in about a million years and I'm here to tell you that I must have been fucking nuts!

First off, let me state that this film has some very real personal connections for me.

  • I'm fairly sure that one of the stars, Pamela Jean Bryant, was the first naked woman I ever saw. Not in person. That wouldn't happen for an excrutiatingly long time. No, I saw Ms. Bryant in all her naked glory in an issue of Playboy in early 1978. I know it is weird that I remember that naughty fact, but I remember it nonetheless. I was 11, and it was my brother's magazine. He kept them in his dresser drawer beneath some t-shirts or something. Yeah, like I wasn't going to find them.
  • Another one of the stars, Lisa London, is probably more responsible for me being a breast man (rather than an ass or leg or armpit man) than any other woman in the world. Her topless scene in this movie sealed the deal. She is ridiculously endowed. In a good way.
  • I actually met another one of the stars, Lindsay Bloom a few years ago. Besides being a former Miss USA and a regular on the Mike Hammer TV show, she was also the bitchy, stacked nemesis to the H.O.T.S. girls in this movie. She was hanging out at my favorite bar one Sunday afternoon getting soused. She was an obviously attractive older woman (I was about 35 at the time, so she was around 50 or so) and she was also obviously a little drunk and looking for some action. I, along with all the other horny guys at the bar, took my turn at chatting her up for a little while. She even gave me her business card. I forgot what she was doing with her life, but she was mostly done with acting. I recognized her, but I couldn't remember where I had seen her. She told me about her Mike Hammer gig, so I figured that must have been it. When I got home that evening, I checked out her IMDB page and saw she was in this. Not only in this, but naked in this. Fuck! I would have tried harder to get me some of that if I had known that she had contributed to the sick development of my puberty years. Double fuck!

So, as you can see, I've got a lot invested in this film. When we signed up to NetFlix last month, I thought it would be a good idea to rent it and watch it with Gia. You know, for a laugh.

I'm sorry to report that I may have been seriously retarded as a young teenager. Not only was the titty action not very, er, titillating, but it didn't even approach the "so bad it's actually kinda funny and good" barrier. It couldn't even see that barrier over the horizon. Or over Lisa London's Grand Titons, for that matter. It was so bad that it actually gives bad a bad name. It's that bad!

If you need any more reasons not to watch this movie, I give you Danny Bonaduce. He was around 19 at the time of filming, and he plays a smarmy, disco-loving, open-shirt wearing DJ who is just a wee bit short of being as big of a douchbag as Danny Bonaduce is in real life.

It's really a shame, because I used to love these late 70's/early 80's sex farces with a passion. Uncomplicated stories. Beautiful naked women. Dick and fart jokes. That's a recipe for success for just about any red-blooded straight male of the species that I know. But not only was this poorly written, poorly acted and poorly just wasn't funny. Not even for a retarded 12 year-old boy. I'm sorry. I have no excuse.

So much for the fond memories of youth. I wonder if Star Wars was really any good?