Recent Reviews

Class of 1984 (Blu-ray)
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When Class of 1984 roared into theaters thirty-three years ago, legions of parents were incensed. Metal detectors, omnipresent camera surveillance, armies of security stabbing each other, shooting up, and slinging dope on-campus: despite the just-off-on-the-horizon year in its title, Class of 1984 seemed like some distant dystopian nightmare not the least bit grounded in reality. We all know how that turned out.

Andy Norris (Perry King) doesn't get it either. This wide-eyed, idealistic music teacher is setting up shop in some nameless inner city for the first time, and like the man says, he ain't in Nebraska anymore. He's in Lincoln High all of fifteen minutes before seeing a biology teacher (Roddy McDowall) pack a pistol in his briefcase, a gang of thugs slip a straight razor past the metal detectors, a music room that's plastered in graffiti and rotting from the inside, and, well, the inmates generally running the asylum. Lincoln High isn't a place of learning; it's a warzone, and these teenaged hellions have all but won. The system is rigged so that the teachers, administration, and even the police can't really do anything. The staff of Lincoln High spends so much time and energy fending off the most vicious of these monsters that there's nothing left for the tiny handful of students that want to learn. Oh, or maybe that's just ol' Mr. Corrigan rambling again from the bottom of a bottle of Jack. Mr. Norris proudly marches forward anyway, content to ignore Peter Stegman (Timothy Van Patten) so he can better focus on elevating his hardworking-but-not-quite-there-yet orchestra towards something truly special. The more Norris shrugs off Stegman, the harder the ringleader of Lincoln's most notorious gang shoves back. It's a war of escalation. ...[read the entire Blu-ray review of Class of 1984]

Muck (Blu-ray)
"Billy, you're gonna be fine. You've got half-naked, hot chicks and apparently booze."
"Exactly! This is a fucking horror movie, and, fuck, there's way too many of us left."

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Let's pretend for a minute that we're watching...oh, I don't know, any other slasher flick, ever. You'd meet up with this whole gaggle of twentysomethings as they're still piled into their SUV or whatever, juuuust about to arrive in their hopelessly remote house in the middle of fucking nowhere. They'd joke, they'd drink, they'd grope, they'd say each other's names way too much so you remember who's who, and you'd get to know 'em just well enough so that when they eventually start getting mercilessly butchered one by one, maybe their deaths would mean a little something. Along the way, some random townie would warn them about the terrifying legend of wherever-they-are, something we already know a whole bunch about since we just finished watching the pre-credits stalk-and-slash. It's a formula that's been tried and true for decades now. That's how slasher movies are supposed to work.

Okay, and here's Muck, chucking you head on into the deep end of the pool. Yeah, there's your typical small army of college-aged Spring-break-whooo kids out for a week of debauchery in not-literally-Timbuktu, and in true slasher form, it's even set during a holiday, but all the usual prelude...? Nope. Nothing. It's as if writer/director Steve Wolsh just tore out the first forty pages of the script. From the very first frame of Muck, these five are already caked with blood and shit and mud. They've seen their friends savagely slaughtered. One of 'em is a bloodied sack of meat that can't stand on his own two legs. They've clawed their way to something close enough to safety from whatever it is that's been hunting them,...[read the entire Blu-ray review of Muck]

Day of Anger (Blu-ray)
Scott (Giuliano Gemma) has spent the past couple decades waist-deep in shit and scorn. His mother was a whore, and his father, who knows? Damned near everyone in the sleepy desert town of Clifton, Arizona sneers down at this bastard who sweeps their sidewalks and scrubs their toilets. Of his only friends in town, one is a half-blind drunk and the other is an old man no one can be bothered to notice. Murph (Walter Rilla) taught the kid to be a fast draw, but as far as shooting goes, Scott'll need a little more than the wooden toy pistol in his holster.

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Scott can't take his eyes off Frank Talby (Lee Van Cleef) when he rolls into town. Taking care of the stranger's horse gets him one dollar closer to his own steed that he'd been dreaming of. Scott can't help but follow the gunslinger around town like a wide-eyed puppy. He even gets a front row seat to Talby shooting dead one of the most powerful men in Clifton: someone who'd been tormenting Scott all his life. Okay, technically it was self-defense, even though Talby goaded Perkins (Romano Puppo) into drawing in the first place. Whatever. Talby takes off before Perkins' men can hunt him down, while Scott's stuck behind as a punching bag for the sons of bitches who couldn't stomach the judge's verdict.

A bruised, bloodied Scott collects the eight dollars he's squirreled away, hops on his mule, and sets out after Talby. In this man he barely knows, Scott sees a surrogate father...someone who'll teach him how to shoot and rise above the very literally shitty life he's endured for some twenty years now. In Scott, Talby sees...well, something, but that'd be telling. Talby isn't the most kindly and generous teacher, leaving his "pupil" beaten, bloodied, and broke, but Scott's persistence just the same earns him a...[read the entire Blu-ray review of Day of Anger]

More reviews...

Stuff I've Watched Recently

  • 3/25: Class Of 1984 (Collector's Edition) (Blu-ray; Commentary)
  • 3/25: Class Of 1984 (Collector's Edition) (Blu-ray)
  • 3/23: Duck You Sucker Aka a Fistful of Dynamite (Blu-ray)
  • 3/22: Funny Face (1957) (BD) (Blu-ray)
  • 3/22: My Name Is Nobody (40th Anniversary Edition) (Blu-ray)
  • 3/21: Graduation Day (Blu-ray + DVD Combo) (Blu-ray)
  • 3/18: Muck (Blu-ray)
  • 3/15: The Raid 2 (Blu-ray)
  • 3/14: Lolita (Amazon Exclusive) (Blu-ray)
  • 3/12: Day Of Anger Blu-Ray + DVD (Blu-ray)
  • 3/11: Quiet Gun (Blu-ray)
  • 3/8: Massacre Mafia Style Blu-ray + DVD Combo (Blu-ray)
  • 3/4: Doctor Who: The Time of the Doctor (Blu-ray) (Blu-ray)
  • 3/4: Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special: The Day of the Doctor (Blu-ray 3D / Blu-ray / DVD Combo) (Blu-ray)
  • 3/3: The Fall (Blu-ray)
More of my boring video log...
Movies I've Acquired Recently

  • 3/26: Archer: Season 5 (Blu-ray)
  • 3/26: Birdman (Blu-ray)
  • 3/25: First Men in the Moon (Blu-ray)
  • 3/25: Gone With The Pope (Blu-ray + DVD Combo) (Blu-ray)
  • 3/25: Ghoulies / Ghoulies II (Blu-ray)
  • 3/18: Class Of 1984 (Collector's Edition) (Blu-ray)
  • 3/17: Duck You Sucker Aka a Fistful of Dynamite (Blu-ray)
  • 3/17: My Name Is Nobody (40th Anniversary Edition) (Blu-ray)
  • 3/17: House of Wax (2005) (DVD)
  • 3/17: Funny Face (1957) (BD) (Blu-ray)
  • 3/14: Graduation Day (Blu-ray + DVD Combo) (Blu-ray)
  • 3/12: Muck (Blu-ray)
  • 3/10: The Raid 2 (Blu-ray)
  • 3/10: Wolfcop (Blu-ray)
  • 3/10: The Palm Beach Story (Blu-ray)
More stuff I've bought or been sent to review...

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