Archive for January, 2009

(grumplet) The Happiness of the Katakuris: The Sound of Music with Dead Bodies

January 27, 2009

The premise of The Happiness of the Katakuris is like this: A middling patriach of a Japanese family leaves behind his mundane shoe sales job in order to open up a bed-and-breakfast at the foot of Mt. Fuji and drags his whole family along for the ride. However, when they finally get their first guests, each one ends up dying overnight. Desperate to stave off police suspicion and save the family business, they decide to bury the growing number of bodies in the nearby grounds.

Now, this sounds pretty macabre, like some sort of Asian “The Telltale Heart.” A conventional treatment of a plot such as this might be a quiet, haunting horror movie filled with chilling imagery, deadly silences and mounting dread that culminates into a terrifying treatise on guilt and paranoia.

But this movie was made by Takashi Miike, so it’s a musical comedy instead.

FAME! I wanna live forevaaaaaaaaaaa


Resident Evil: Degeneration – It’s Small Time

January 23, 2009

The Resident Evil series of horror video games is a fascinating look at how not to do serial storytelling. It’s so over-convoluted a remake of the first game was made to include references to developments made in the sequels, tying all the characters, histories, various viruses, and conspiracies together. Then series creator Shinji Mikami, while revamping Resident Evil 4 for the second time during development, said “screw all this clumsy history” and restarted with a clean slate. The dozens of loose threads from previous games were abandoned for dozens more loose threads. Resident Evil 5, coming out in March, appears to answer a few questions RE4 didn’t bother with, like what Sherry Birkin and Jill Valentine are up to, but with this series it’s best not to expect anything substantial from the plot department anymore. If you want to look at exactly how ridiculous and bloated Resident Evil‘s plot got over the years take a look-see at Thomas Wilde’s outrageously detailed FAQ, which tackles tough questions like “Does Ada actually care about Leon?” (No.) and “Is Saddler retarded?” (Yes.)

Clearly, the fans care way more about the games’ plot than its writers. Absolute proof arrived late last year in the guise of Resident Evil: Degeneration, a direct-to-DVD CG-animated movie that takes place between Resident Evils 4 and 5. It stars Leon Kennedy and Claire Redfield, the protagonists of Resident Evil 2, perhaps the most beloved entry in the series, long before it became the labyrinthine mess it is today. Early previews suggested Degeneration would be full of nods to RE2. Turns out it has exactly two, and one of them is a shot-for-shot reenactment of our heroes’ meeting. It was the only few seconds of the movie I guess I could say I enjoyed and that was only because I remember the intro sequence from a Playstation game released 11 years ago. If Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children proved to folks that Square should stick to video games, then Degeneration proves the guys at Capcom shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near pencils, pens, chalk or anything that could potentially aid them in writing a script. If they can’t keep their story straight in a long-running video game series, what makes them think they can pull it off in a hundred-minute movie?

Come with me if you want to be bored (more…)

Happy Holidays – Fievel Goes West: MOUSEBURGERS!!

January 16, 2009

JohnnyMora: ready when you are
sirtmagus: k hold on
sirtmagus: k i’m set
sirtmagus: thought it’d be a bright idea to make hot chocolate :V
JohnnyMora: {:s
JohnnyMora: well
JohnnyMora: pass some over here when you’re done~
JohnnyMora: tell me when you press play~
sirtmagus: nooowww
JohnnyMora: I associate this old Universal logo with The Jetsons Movie
sirtmagus: UNIVERSAL? Is can it be Jurassic Park time now?
JohnnyMora: Oh man, it was John Cleese?
sirtmagus: the jetsons movie was this like dark dystopian thing with slave aliens right?
JohnnyMora: Yes.
JohnnyMora: But man.
sirtmagus: Yaeh, Cleese is the cat villain.
JohnnyMora: It looks like they went all out with the production except for actually putting effort into the credits.
JohnnyMora: This is like the laziest.
sirtmagus: I dunno, it cut to the chase.
JohnnyMora: And what’s-his-face was nowhere near this.
sirtmagus: I don’t like when opening credits drag.
sirtmagus: Don Bluth?
JohnnyMora: yes
JohnnyMora: busy with ROCKADOODLE, maybe
JohnnyMora: That was a great pan.
sirtmagus: pfft. that guy… was silly.
JohnnyMora: Jimmy Stewart, you are so great.
sirtmagus: Jimmy Stewart’s final role is a burping dog sheriff, huh.
JohnnyMora: sigh
JohnnyMora: yeah
sirtmagus: At least it wasn’t a giant transforming planet that eats other planets.


Happy Holidays – Labyrinth: Remind Me of the Babe

January 7, 2009

Tim: ..!!
Tim: OK I gotta get into my MOVIE COMMENTIN’ MINDSET
John: Is that like channeling spirits?
John: Like
John: you call upon the powers of MST3K?
Tim: I shoot myself in the head with an Evoker and a big red Tom Servo shows up before me.
Tim: ZIO!!!
Tim: ok GO
John: The Columbia TriStar logo is associated so closely with movies I loved in my childhood. :3
Tim: My gosh, I only think of that white horse when I don’t want to sneeze.
John: Ooh, this looks pretty good in high quality
John: This is a CGI Owel
John: Or owl
John: gaze upon it and know the power of technology
John: in 1985
Tim:Movies don’t have LOGOS anymore do they?
John: They’re always at the end
John: It’s onlyyyy forevaaaaaaaaaa
John: Bowie, you magnificent, creepy bastard.
Tim: Years before Frank Oz gave us STEPFUHD WIVES.
John: I didn’t get that until muuuuuuch later in life.
John: cuzithurtslikehell
John: Man
John: This song
John: Takes me all the way back
Tim: Monty Python Terry Jones?!
John: Yes.
Tim: Get. Out.
John: Nope!
John: :D
Tim: Henson DIRECTED this?!
John: YES
John: Think again, boy.