Defiance

A new series by the SyFy network presents an alien invasion plus 33 years, Earth has been terraformed into dystopian society with human and aliens living together. This is a character driven series with great CGI and lot of green screen shots. The actors do a good job. Even though on Earth, there is enough alien here to satisfy hardcore SyFy fans.

Defiance is the New St. Louis that is home for a cross-section of humans and aliens. There is a political and social element to the story.  The variety of alien creatures living with the humans have their own language and motivations. The series has a good grasp of the dynamics of the races due to Rockne S. O’Bannon, the creator/writer of the show. O’Bannon also did Farscape, Defiance is in line with a Battlestar Galactica type show.

Overall, the show has promise. It needs some fine tuning in the back story, but still a good addition to the SyFy channels line-up and worth a view.

Zombie Dairies 2

Four months after the zombie outbreak in Zombie Diaries (2006), a military unit is on the run from the slowest zombies in movie history. No real need to fight the zombies or change your daily activities when you could just walk around them. With that said, this movie is not a bad zombie movie, primarily because it is a British made movie. Some scary moments, but not as good as the 2006 Dairies. Effectively filmed through the eyes of a hand-held camera. A stereotypical zombie flick that lacks character development or sense a dread. And what’s up with the flickering camera fx? Is anyone using a non-digital camera these days.

Vice

HBO’s latest show, Vice, is a half-hour magazine that asks the question, WTF is up with the human condition? As society becomes more advanced, we seem to fide ways to remind us of our primal instincts of conflict, greed, and apathy. Vice looks into the social issues that are not examined in many modern media outlets, especially America.

The first episode goes to Afghanistan and the Philippines to report on child suicide bombers and soldiers. This is a hash look into the realities that we will not see on the western news. This is a fearless show that presents unfiltered images to viewers. It’s more an op-ed show that gains access to key players and feeds you stories that are bitter to taste. But, the images are powerful and tell the story. The show is produced by Vice Media, an online, non-traditional news agency that covers the world with open eyes. That means few conservatives will dine on their dangerous reporting.

The Frankenstein Theory

This movie has a great premise, what if Frankenstein was real? This mocumentary, in the genre of Blair Witch, has an intriguing beginning. Unfortunately, the characters are stupid. The story drags the group into the wilderness of Canada to confront the possible Frankenstein. Stupid people, in the wild, frozen land. The only believable character is film is the wilderness. I am full of hope…hope that one of these mocumentaries will be as good a Troll Hunter. Hope is fading that an American film-maker can accomplish the task.

Citadel

This 2012 Scottish thriller pits a broken new father against a crazed group of kids. In the tradition of Them (French movie not the one about giant ants), it draws you in an effectively relays the terror of the father. If Americans are waiting for the apocalypse, it appears that Europe is already there. The city-scape is a desolate place of burnt out cars, apartments, and people. The protagonist, Tommy (Aneurin Barnard) does a great job of presenting a mentally broken man. He looks and appears truly terrified, and, at times, crazed. Also stars, James Cosmo, a familiar face of the angry Brittan. The sense of isolation is palpable. A good suspense-thriller (not truly horror), above average direction, cinematography, and acting although the second half falls flat and the end is weak.

Stolen

Nicholas Cage. Still paying off debt with bad movies. Not much can save this standard fare about a broken criminal searching for his kidnapped daughter being held by Josh Lucas, the disgruntled criminal-buddy. Simon West directed this mess. Oh, the music is done by noted Mark Isham, sounds like a 1970′s or 80′s TV cop show, Starsky and Hutch or Cagney & Lacey. Cage’s desperation leaves one wanting to read a good book.

House Hunting

Ugh. Mark Singer, some other actors, and a story that has seen better days. If you like a movie that shows the downfall of a group of trapped people, then you may like this movie. Nothing new, special, or imaginative here. One scene you can see a neighbor house. Don’t think that was intended. Singer is the same actor that he was in the 80′s, average. Not believable that this old guy is with the young lady. Nothing shocking or horrifying.

Russian Gems – Timur Bekmambetov

Russia is not know for their movie production. Well, if your not aware of these two movies; Day Watch and Night Watch, now is a great time to enter the Russian movie world with these gems.

Night Watch

Timur Bekmambetov of Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter and Wanted directed Night Watch in 2004 for $4 million and created one of the most original, creative, and exciting movies of the past decade. The story is centers around a modern day, iffy peace treaty between two factions, those of the dark and those of the light. The opposing forces monitor each other and stop “unauthorized” and criminal activity by either faction. Timur has developed an imaginative world through the use of great special fx and camera work. The characters are well developed and entertaining to watch. This is a supernatural, sci-fi horror with magic, vampires, immortals, and an assortment of preternatural beings. I can’t emphasize enough how original this and Day Watch are. If you liked Vampire Hunter and Wanted, you can see the imaginative use of a story and fx.

Day Watch

Day Watch is the continuation of the Night Watch. The original intent was to develop a trilogy ending in Twilight Watch, which I am hoping. The movies were birthed from a book series from Sergei Vasilievich Lukyanenko (Night Watch, Day Watch, Twilight Watch, Final Watch, and New Watch).

Timur is a director to watch for in the future. His is consistently producing fantastic entertainment. Night Watch was created by a large group of developers scattered throughout Russia. Graphic artist, cgi experts, and artists. This collaborative effort only enhanced the final product. Limited funds and a no central production studio enabled a diverse talent pool of “non” movie industry sources to contibute. When will American movie makers learn that a bigger budget does not equate to better performance.

Website Issues

The website was seriously broken. My hosting service crapped a brick on my files. So, I redid the posts, but all user data has been cleared from the files. No data was comprised, just deleted. Sorry, but, I’m am a one-man show and I am back on track. So, feel free to re-registered.

“So it goes…” -Kurt Vonnegut