Monthly Archives: July 2019

Super Recaps: The Twilight Zone (Last Lap)

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The Twilight Zone and all the images you see in this recap are owned by Warner Bros Television and based on the series created by Rod Serling

Episode directed by Brad Turner

We’re back with another episode of The Half-Remembered Zone and this is one that I remember quite a bit; particularly the ending which… I don’t remember liking all that much?  It’s an interesting episode to be sure, but I mostly remember it feeling like some sort of PSA about dealing with loss rather than something I could genuinely connect with.  Then again, I watched these episodes when I was a foolish teenager and now that I’m a foolish man I might have a slightly different perspective on it.  Has this episode aged like a fine wine, or am I about to chug a gallon of fifteen year old milk that didn’t go down too smooth the first time around?  Let’s find out!!

The episode begins with two friends Andy and Marco (Clifton Collins Jr and Greg Serano); the former with a terminal illness and the other trying to show him a good time by driving fast and reliving old memories.  It’s not doing much to stave off the constant coughing and the fear of death, but I do think the dynamic here is very strong between the two.  Marco is definitely cheery in that way that people get when they want to help someone forget about what’s wrong and () is brutally honest about how scared his of dying at such a young age.  We find out that this car Marco is driving was built by Andy and that it’s going to be in a big race in just a week’s time that Andy is afraid he won’t get to see, but as luck would have it while they’re cruising on this rainy night, they find that the track has already been set up and that no one else is there.  At first Marco is hesitant to do this and thinks that Andy should get to a hospital, but Andy is adamant that they take one LAST LAP together and so Marco drives the course.  What neither of the realized is that driving ridiculously high speeds on a track on a rainy night is PROBABLY not the best idea and so they end up crashing the car.  Andy wakes up in ambulance seemingly no worse for wear despite the whole cancer thing, but Marco… well he didn’t make it.  Well sucks to be him I guess, but somehow (I’m guessing THE TWILIGHT ZONE did it), Andy no longer seems to be terminal.  In fact, he’s basically back to his old self which is a detail I DEFINITELY don’t remember from the first time I saw it and on top of that the race track completely disappeared when Andy goes to visit it the next morning which I don’t remember either.

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“This is not my beautiful racetrack!  This is not my terminal illness!  HOW DID I GET HERE!?”

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Super Comics: Sonic the Hedgehog (IDW) – #19

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Sonic the Hedgehog (the comic book series) and all the images you see in this recap are owned by IDW and SEGA of America

Welcome back to another issue of Sonic Adventure Z!  We haven’t quite gotten to climbing zombies yet, but give it time!  I’m sure Doctor Eggman is watching a whole stack of B movies for inspiration!  The invasion continues unabated despite Sonic’s best efforts and now the virus is spreading to SUNSET CITY which I’m sure was a very important place that we just never got around to mentioning before now, and he’s aided by his bestest buddies from Team Dark because I guess all the other buddies he’s saved are off doing something else.  Can Sonic stave off the zombie hoards as well as his own zombotic infection?  Will the exhaustion of putting the entire world on his shoulders day after day finally be too much for him?  Will he be forced to… GO SLOW!?  Let’s find out!!

In case it wasn’t clear already, the issue begins as many have already; with terrified furries running for their lives while Sonic and the secondary character team de jour running interference. In case you weren’t aware already, Team Dark consists of Batwoman (Rouge the Bat), Sonic The Try Hard (Shadow the Hedgehog), and ED-209 (E-123 Omega); which of those names are sillier I’ll leave you to decide.  Also, does anyone else miss when these three were ACTUALLY bad guys, or at the very least chaotic neutrals? I mean shouldn’t Rouge be out there planning some sort of heist or infiltrating Eggman’s secret base?  Instead she’s out here with a headset on directing the scared masses like an overly ambitious traffic cop, and I can’t be the only one feeling like that’s a waste of her talents, right?  At least Omega is getting into the swing of things a bit by chucking Zombots around and firing his lasers, but I guess to make it less horrifying they had to MAKE SURE TO TELL US that the bullets are minor annoyances to them rather than deadly.  What this tells me is that Omega is FAR less threatening than GEMERL, the latter of whom they had to stop from murdering people with HIS robot weaponry in the

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“And I can also see their parachutes! They’re OK.”

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Super Recaps: The Twilight Zone (Future Trade)

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The Twilight Zone and all the images you see in this recap are owned by Warner Bros Television and based on the series created by Rod Serling

Directed by Bob Balaban

We’re back with another episode of Now That’s What I Call Twilight Zone!  You’re much more digestible and mainstream version of something good that you’ll forget about a heck of a lot faster!  Then again, we might just have a standout episode here if you can believe it as we’re talking about that one particular bug bear of internet sad boys; TOXIC MASCULINITY AND ENTITLEMENT!!  Yes, even back in 2002 the world thought you were all a bunch of losers.  ANYWAY!  Does this episode take full advantage of its premise to deliver an interesting take on the subject, or will it refuse to take off the kid gloves and give these ridiculous fools a pass for their behavior?  Let’s find out!!

The episode begins with Martin (Frank Whaley) being annoyed by the most obnoxious and stereotypical hell beast of a bad wife who is literally screaming at him for being a loser and to feed the kids.  It’s like something right out of an MRA handbook as the only thing we get to see is the haggard man while the wife and kids are just voices in the distance with no discernable personality besides spite and venom.  Oh, it gets even worse from there!  The guy goes to work at a hardware store and his boss a total control freak who feels the need to tear him down for coming three minutes late for work and then when he tries to strike up a “friendly conversation” with a female coworker, she just walks away after an awkward silence.  Seriously, give this guy six months and he’ll be found dead in an alley with clown makeup and balloon animals full of anthrax.  Fortunately for the rest of us, it looks like THE TWILIGHT ZONE is about to stop his murder spree in its tracks with some twist of ironic fate as he keeps getting pop up ads about this company called Future Trade who wants to give him a one-time offer!  Now if it was you or I who got this message, I’d assume it was just another porn site trying to get your credit card details, but I guess Martin is so far down his own self-pitying spiral of misery that he’s willing to give it a chance.  Now let’s say that you or I DID go the extra step of visiting this strange company promising to give us the future we wanted, I’m pretty sure we’d turn tail and run when we realize that it’s run by Dean Winters.  HOLY CRAP, DEAN WINTERS IS IN THIS!!

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This is all an elaborate Allstate commercial, isn’t it?

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Cinema Dispatch: The Lion King

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The Lion King and all the images you see in this review are owned by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Directed by Jon Favreau

Didn’t I just do this a month ago?  Seriously Disney, I know you own basically all of entertainment now, but can you at least change it up a bit from month to month?  We JUST got done making fun of the genie in Aladdin; we don’t need another remake this soon!  Seriously, if they keep burning through their renaissance films like this they’re gonna have to take another stab at Treasure Planet before 2030, and if they thought that one sunk like a lead balloon LAST TIME… oh who am I kidding?  We’ll give it a billion dollars at the box office without a second thought!  So until those bleak times are upon us, does this latest remake of a beloved nineties classic live up to the original, or is this a worse idea than Lion King 1.5?  Let’s find out!!

Now stop me if you’ve heard this one before!  Simba (Donald Glover) is the son of Mustafa (James Earl Jones); king of the Pride Lands and brother of Scar (Chiwetel Ejiofor) who conveniently has a scar on his face to go with the name.  Now if the name wasn’t enough to convince you, scar is one EVIL lion that wants the throne for himself but now has to wait behind the little brat for his shot.  That is unless he pulls a Hamlet and MURDERS THE KING IN COLD BLOOD, albeit with a stampede instead of a jug of ear poison.  Convincing young Simba that he is responsible, he runs off to live in exile while Scar takes the Pride Lands for himself, and the young prince runs into two free spirited do nothings called Timon and Pumbaa (Billy Eichner and Seth Rogen).  While Simba is living his carefree life as a slacker, things are not going so well in the Pride Lands under Scar’s quasi fascist rule with the help of the hyenas and so Simba’s childhood friend Nala (Beyoncé Knowles-Carter) runs off to find help, and believing Simba to be dead this whole time… well let’s just say there’s an awkward conversation very soon in their future.  Can Simba find the courage to face his fear and his guilt that have defined him for so long?  Just how far will Scar go to stay seated on his throne, and does Simba have a chance of defeating him after all this time?   Did Disney listen to that “everything the light touches” line again recently and consider that a challenge?

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“Everything the light touches is our Kingdom.”     “Yeah, but the Earth revolves around the sun, so pretty much everywhere gets hit by sunlight at SOME point throughout the day.”     “Look, we’re lions, alright!?  We can’t draw border maps!  WE DON’T HAVE OPPOSABLE THUMBS!!”

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Cinema Dispatch: Crawl

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Crawl and all the images you see in this review are owned by Paramount Pictures

Directed by Alexandre Aja

You know, I don’t think I’ve ever seen an alligator (or crocodile movie) before.  Heck, we can probably throw snakes in there too now that I think about it.  Not even Snakes on a plane!  It’s an entire sub genre of horror that just kind of passed me by, but I guess now is as good a time as any; especially considering how lackluster my year for horror has been.  What; were expecting a review from ANOTHER film by the guy who made Hereditary?  Yeah, I’m good actually!  Don’t need any more of… whatever that is in my life, but you all enjoy!  I’ve got a movie about a crocodile in a basement to watch instead!  Does this horror film manage to bring the scares and the fun with its nifty little premise while ALSO giving me a valid excuse to avoid Midsommar?  Let’s find out!!

Haley (Kaya Scodelario) is a swimmer in college who’s been having trouble outperforming here peers which is bad news for her scholarship, but even WORSE is the fact that she now has to drive to the south of Florida to check on her dad (Barry Pepper) who for whatever reason isn’t answering his phone and is right in the path of a category 5 hurricane.  She just barely manages to get to her childhood home before the storm kicks into high gear and also manages to find her father, but it turns out that he’s stuck in the basement with a bite mark on his leg and at least one alligator that’s feeling rather smug about it.  So now they’re BOTH stuck in the basement in a small area where the pipes make it impossible for the gators to get to them, but the rain keeps on pouring and the basement keeps on filling which means they have to find a way out before they both drown; and even THEN they’re in the middle of a hurricane that could knock the house over given enough time so they have to find a way to make it through that as well!  Can Haley save her dad and use her amazing swimming skills to outsmart these vicious predators who seem particularly cross with them for some reason?  Why are there alligators in the basement in the first place, and could this basement situation just be the tip of the ice burg?  Is this all just an elaborate adaptation of that app game Where’s My Water!?

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Darn you, Swampy!  You have all the water now, what more do you want!?

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Cinema Dispatch: Stuber

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Stuber and all the images you see in this review are owned by 20th Century Fox

Directed by Michael Dowse

I don’t know about you, but if there’s ONE thing I’ve always wanted to see in a movie, its endless product placement for a company trying to corner the market on an industry through sheer financial force of will!  Then again, I probably shouldn’t be sitting TOO pretty on my high horse considering I still review Disney films despite their vicious takeover of 20th Century Fox (coincidentally the studio who made this film), so I guess I’ll just have to judge this movie on its own merits instead of how blatantly EVIL it’s marketing is.  Anyway!  Does this Buddy Comedy manage to be the best of both their lead actors’ filmographies, or are you much better off watching Hotel Artemis and The Big Sick instead?  Let’s find out!!

Stu (Kumail Nanjiani) is your average millennial stuck trying to make it in the gig economy and failing to earn the affections of his BFF (Betty Gilpin) who he’s been secretly in love with but decided to invest in her startup company instead of just telling her he likes her.  We’ve all been there, am I right!?  Well investing in other people’s ideas isn’t cheap, so along with his day job at a sporting goods store he drives with Uber (DOWNLOAD NOW FOR YOUR MOBILE DEVICES!!) and does his very best to be as accommodating as possible.  This is 2019 though, and apparently being a massive jerk is in vogue now so despite his best efforts he’s barely hanging onto his current user score which is dangerously close to getting him kicked off the service entirely.  Enough about that guy though!  This is a movie with a famous wrestler, so let’s talk about that famous wrestler!  Vic (Dave Bautista) is a cop who is obsessed with finding this drug trafficker named Oka Teijo (Iko Uwais) who he nearly caught a while back but managed to escape and also killed his partner in the process.  After six months though, there hasn’t been a break in the case and so he takes a bit of time off to try and reconnect with his daughter (Natalie Morales ) and finally get that laser eye surgery he’s been meaning to get.  He’s at home and waiting for his vision to return as well as running out the clock until the start of his daughter’s art show when he gets a call from one of his informants telling him that Teijo is gonna be at this big drug deal later tonight at some undisclosed location in town.  Seeing his chance but not seeing much else, Vic is determined to take Teijo down once and for all… but he needs a ride.  I THINK YOU SEE WHERE THIS IS GOING!!  Can Stu provide wonderful ride sharing service to the antsy and determined Vic and maintain his unobtrusive existence with a slightly higher star rating?  Can Vic solve this case without his vision, and can he convince Stu to help him beyond his duty of just getting him from one place to another?  Seriously, does this dude not have even ONE cop friend or a super tough bro he could have called instead!?

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“I tried to get someone else to pick me up, but he was too busy.”     “Oh really?”     “AND HIS NAME IS JOHN CENA!!”     “I don’t need your life story, pal.”

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Super Recaps: The Twilight Zone (Found and Lost)

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The Twilight Zone and all the images you see in this recap are owned by Warner Bros Television and based on the series created by Rod Serling

Episode directed by Vern Gillum

We’re back with another episode of The Knockoff Zone which is apropos considering this is another episode of the show that JUST SO HAPPENED to be a heck of a lot like a movie that came around the same time!  So what are we “paying homage” to today?  Well it’s not QUITE an exact fit, but there’s a lot of The Family Man in this episode which if you don’t recall is the Nicolas Cage movie where he’s an obscenely rich dude who is confronted with the life he didn’t choose to live.  You may also remember it as the movie where he goes TA-DAAAA for no reason, but sadly I doubt we’ll get to see something like that in this episode.  OR WILL WE!?  I guess there’s only way to find out!  Let’s get started!!

The episode begins with some dude name Sean (Brian Austin Green) driving to work and he barely has time to lock his car and straighten his tie before Forest Whitaker is on hand to tell us what this episode is about!  I mean I’m not about to go check, but twenty seconds into an episode sounds like a record for ANY Twilight Zone series to start its monologue, right?   Anyway, what’s ACTUALLY important is that Sean is a rich business guy who has more than anyone else could DREAM of, but seems to be deeply unhappy for some reason and is about to be interviewed by a journalist (Moira Kelly).  No, before you ask, I didn’t accidentally pop in a copy of Fifty Shades of Grey.  Although…

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“My name is Bianca Titanium, and you must be Shaun White.”     “Uh… nope.  My first name’s not even spelled that way.  Are you sure you’re in the right building?”

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Super Wrestling: AEW – Fight for the Fallen

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Fight for the Fallen and all the images you see I this recap are owned by All Elite Wrestling and Shahid Khan

We’re back for Part 3 of the AEW saga which will hopefully be better than Alien 3, but probably not as good as Back to the Future Part 3.  Will it be better than the last PPV Fyter Fest?  Well we’ll find out soon enough, but can I point out that twice in a row now they’ve given these shows out away FOR FREE which, even with the TNT deal approaching fast, STILL feels like it’s riding the line between confidence and foolishness.  All I’m saying is that I came to peace with having to pay money for these things, and it’s feeling kind of weird that the moment I do they decide to give them away!  I’m usually not that lucky with these kinds of things, but I guess I’ll ride this no charge train until it derails!

So before we get started, let’s talk about the setup of the show itself.  There’s a slight change to the ring here in that there’s a ramp leading directly to it rather than a ramp to the outside where they have to then climb in.  At first I wasn’t sure if I liked the idea of a raised platform on the outside of the ring, but I never noticed it hindering anyone and they managed to sue it effectively a few times throughout.  The open air theater is fine even if I’m usually not a big fan of it as natural lighting feels a bit dull, but they do it late in the day so most of the matches are at night under controlled lighting anyway so it works out fine and it ends up feeling like a casual affair rather than a full on Double or Nothing production.  It’s good that they kept things on a much lighter note here because I’ll tell you right now, this is the worst show they’ve done so far even if it’s still a solid wrestling program.  We’ll get to why soon enough, but if it has an edge over Fyter Fest they at least set the tone right with this almost picnic vibe to keep it all feeling more casual.  That also extends to the announce table though as our three announcers feel like they’ve regressed back to Double or Nothing; struggling to find things to talk about; especially in the lower key matches that really could have used the boost.  Matches like, just for example… the first one on the preshow!

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Peter Avalon “The Librarian” vs Sonny Kiss

AEWFFTF1“The Librarian” is accompanied to the ring by Leva Bates “The Librarian”

First things first!  The last time we saw Sunny Kiss was when he was shoving her butt into Tommy Dreamers face back in the Double or Nothing Battle Royale and on top of that, I referred to him as a woman.  I did in fact assume their gender and it turns out that I was wrong.  According to a tweet from Sonny Kiss, he uses He/Him pronouns so I will use those going forward.  ANYWAY!  The Librarians have gotten quite a bit of flak in the short amount of time and while I DO appreciate what they’re going for and just how much heat they’re willing to take from the audience, I honestly I don’t think this match is doing them much favors.  First major problem is that Peter Avalon shouldn’t take off his librarian costume.  Wearing traditional wrestling trunks as he does in this match, he looks like a dork and not in the good way.  Certain heel gimmicks need to carry into the ring for them to work; particularly ones where the gimmick is that they are not in fact wrestlers.  Just look at Baron Corbin who is a pretty effective heel and never takes off his “manger” outfit when he’s in the ring, at least as far I’ve seen, and it helps convey his status as a sniveling authority figure.  Sonny Kiss on the other hand projects style, grace, and attitude through every costume choice, every move he makes in the ring, and every appeal to the audience whenever Peter’s on the ground.  I think the gimmick can work, but there’s certainly room left to tweak it.

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“Can I join your team?”     “Only if you can look half as good as I do.”     “Dang it…”

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