one word reviews of Movies and TV

Sunday, December 9, 2018

A Simplistic Review: The Christmas Chronicles (2018)

Not one holiday has more films dedicated to it then Christmas. From "It's A Wonderful Life" to "Black Christmas" there is a Christmas film for everyone. So when a new Christmas flick comes around, it just seems like white noise, and while "The Christmas Chronicles" takes it's cues from films like "Elf" with a dash of "Adventures in Babysitting" and the cutesy CGI of "Trolls" there is something QUAINT about it.

He's played Elvis...three times, Wyatt Earp, and a cartoon dog, but seeing Kurt Russell ham it up as Santa Claus, is truly a lot of fun. Much like Tim Allen in "The Santa Clause" Russell is doing his best to put his stamp on the role of Jolly Old Saint Nick for a new generation, and it works.

Will this be a new Christmas classic? I certainly think you can put this in your holiday film rotation going forward and have a pretty good time. 

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

A Simplistic Review: The Big Lebowski


I guess this review felt slightly appropriate only because this is the only film that I can think of that features a clip of a speech from George H.W. Bush, but it also features the ICON that is The Dude in "The Big Lebowski."

Watching this film made me come up with the weird parallel that The Dude is Kuwait and his life has been invaded by Iraq who you could call either Jackie Treehorn of The Nihilists or even the real Jeffrey Lebowski. Weird, but think about it...

I remember reading a review by Rene Rodriguez from "The Miami Herald" who really bashed this film. It's always been a vivid memory of mine. But I consider this the very best that the Coen Brothers have done with the craziest cast of characters they've created. It's damn near perfect.

Friday, November 30, 2018

(Ep. 113): The Simplistic Reviews Podcast: November 2018


Don't count your turkeys before they're clucked...that's a saying, right? The Simplistic Reviews Podcast for November comes right under the wire just in time to tell you what happened to Harry Potter, explore the career and voice of Kathleen Turner, discuss the filmography of Steven Seagal and create a brand new Pokemon. The boys test the limits of reality with the return of Believable Or Bullshit. Justin reveals which classic '70s show he'll be watching next on TV Roundup. And we flip Hollywood on its head with another edition of Simplistic Switcheroo. All that and more on the award-winning Simplistic Reviews Podcast.

NOTES
Hard To Kill
HPV Michael Douglas
Detective Pikachu
Michael J. Fox on Curb

MUSIC
Fast Times By Idols
Sun Traces By Isaac Joel
Gold Medal By Sounds Like Sander
Runaway Ghost By Travis Loafman



Tuesday, November 20, 2018

A Simplistic Review: The Ballad of Buster Scruggs


In the cesspool of Netflix Original films, very few standout. For every, "Beasts of No Nation" you have five versions of "Tau." Sure, things have gotten a lot better in 2018, and the pinnacle for me is "The Ballad of Buster Scruggs," a film very much in the vein of the BINGE culture we all know and loathe...i mean love.

Composed of six tales of the Old West from wagon trains on the Oregon Trail, bank robberies gone wrong and of course a little gold prospecting, the Coen Brothers have created some very special here and re-ignite the mythic quality of westerns, and perhaps it helps a little that the western genre is back in vogue again with the titanic success of "Red Dead Redemption II."

Plenty of classic Coen Brothers charm, gallows humor and a great cast, "Ballad" can be viewed all at once, or even as six little episodes to enjoy in bite size treats.

Sunday, November 18, 2018

A Simplistic Review: Game Night (2018)

Somewhere in a multiverse, or alternate dimension, every film that Jason Bateman has appeared since 2011 are somehow related. When you see a Jason Bateman movie you pretty much know what you're in for. From "Horrible Bosses" to "Bad Words" there is a certain tone and feel you get with this films, and perhaps that's what I expected from "Game Night" but this SLY little ditty kind of breaks the mold.

In those aforementioned films, there is a certain meanness and ickiness to them, but "Game Night" is light and breezy and has the always charming Rachel McAdams in one of her funniest roles in a while, if not ever.

I didn't think I would like "Game Night" but it's one of those unsung heroes from the 2018 film scene.

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

A Simplistic Review: Suspiria (2018)


Remake, reboot, homage, inspired by, retake, re-do, call it what you will, there will always be criticism and comparisons especially when you have a film by the same name released that holds a place in group's collective heart. Here we have "Suspiria" the 2018 film "inspired" or a "homage" to the 1977 giallo classic from Dario Argento.

Luca Guadagnino creates a version of "Suspria" with so much DEPTH that its likely to alienate the old guard, but creates something new, different, and fresh that mirrors our current dark societal problems, embraces dread, and cuts through the glammed up Euro-horror of it's 1977 predecessor.

The reason so many remakes get slammed is for obvious reasons; its the idea that people are simply cashing in on a named property, ie, "Ghostbusters." But "Suspria" takes a title and while still using the same names and places, fleshes out a world that is scary, gloomy, and keeps you invested and on the edge even with it's bloated 152-minute runtime.

Word to the wise, try to divorce yourself from the Argento version and enjoy this as a film that takes cues from Miike, Von Trier, Cronenberg, Hitchock, and Aronofsky.

Monday, November 12, 2018

(Ep. 112): If Looks Could Kill - Movie Commentary: Novemeber 2018


If Looks Could Kill

1991 Action Comedy 1hr 28m

Before he can graduate, cocky high school student Michael Corben (Richard Grieco) travels to France on a school trip to earn a missing French credit. But when a British intelligence agent mistakes Michael for a spy of the same name, they rush him to headquarters and assign him to capture the evil Augustus Steranko (Roger Rees), using a plethora of espionage gadgetry. Michael has the time of his life -- until he crosses paths with two assassins (Tom Rack, Carole Davis) who want him dead.

Director: William Dear
Story by: Fred Dekker 

 Why? Because why not! Open that bottle of wine you keep thinking about and spend a lovely evening with DJ, Matt, Justin and the God that is Richard Grieco. Feast your eyes upon the Grieco and say goodbye to your family, because looks can kill!






Saturday, November 10, 2018

'Mid90s' and What the Hell Happened to Us?

Pontificating about "Mid90s" for about three weeks, considering we were a little busy on the site with Halloween reviews and all that other fun and spooky stuff, geez man, this flick is probably going to be my #1 film of 2018.

Jonah Hill brings to life a lot of things that I went through either from a FAMILY aspect, and things I might regret I did, as well as the culture of being a latch-key kid where you would leave for the day and come back when the sun went down. It was a simpler time that still had some innocence attached and the highest stakes you had to deal with is whether you were going to get beat up by the older junior high or high school kids.

20 years after I lived my "mid90s" life it makes me think, and gets me a little depressed, how dramatically the world has changed. The abundance of mass shootings, the rapid reemergence of White Nationalism, calls that everything you hear from the News and Reporters are lies and "Alternative Facts" are an accepted form of currency, and just the overall decorum of our civility with each other.

There was a time when you could leave the house on your bike or skateboard and not worry about making it home. Sure, danger exists, like Al Pacino said "...get killed walking your doggie." But I know we like to bemoan the idea of "the good old days," and I'm at a point in my life, especially after my experience with "Mid90s," where I ask "What the Hell Happened to Us?"     

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Terror in the Aisles


If you want a quick EDUCATION on horror, suspense and sci-fi, you can look no farther than the original YouTube clip montage video, "Terror in the Aisles."

From "Nighthawks" to "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre," this pseudo-documentary with Nancy Allen and Donald Pleasance doing the talking is fun, scary and is the perfect little 82 minute clip show for the horror film novice.

Blood Feast

Blood Feast is fundamental in a handful of ways. Released in 1963 I can only imagine the effect this had on horror and comedy. For me this was the film that allowed me to enter the world of cheesy explicit gore and violence. To laugh and be in awe, it was then I found a calling.

Lifeforce

Lifeforce is a feast of a good time. Vampires from space, check! Space Girl completely naked for pretty much the entire film, check! Awesome FX, check! Sure, the film could use some trimming and has a few goofy moments but Lifeforce is very entertaining. Check it out! 

Monday, October 29, 2018

(Ep. 111): The Simplistic Reviews Podcast: October 2018

What could be more spooky then a Simplistic Reviews Spooktastic Podcast? Okay so you could just  turn on the news which is scary enough.

Today, we bring the Halloween to your ears on the 111th episode of... wait this episode is number 111? So I times 111 by 6... 666!!!, Oh my god Gregory Sestero its the mark of the beast! Damn that's perfect timing or we held off a movie commentary from being released to make a Halloween stupid joke. Nay...not us we aren't that cheesy.

So let's all indulge into some candy, laugh, drink and talk about news and some spooky thoughts we had recently as well make fun of those shitty Hollywood scumbags on this episode of the Simplistic Reviews Podcast.

 Boooo!










Wednesday, October 24, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Mandy

Pro tip: DRUGS would help the experience of "Mandy." But even without DRUGS, this flick from the director of "Beyond the Black Rainbow" and son of the guy that directed the ever-excellent "Tombstone," Panos Cosmatos is all about Nicolas Cage and his descent into madness after a sex cult kills his fantasy-loving wife and destroys his peaceful existence.

The imagery is fascinating, the score one of the best from the late, Johann Johannsson, and if you love grindhouse and acid trip type cinema from the 70s and 80s, this very well might be the "Citizen Kane" of the genre.

The violence is brutal and gory, which I love, and if you like to see Nic Cage flip out "Kiss of the Vampire" style with a touch of "Face/Off" and a pinch of "The Wicker Man," oh boy are you in for a treat.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Apostle


I know that a lot of people are making the comparison to "The Wicker Man" for Netflix's "Apostle" but to me there is a lot more resemblance to RESIDENT Evil.

Evil cult, weird dude with a crazy mask and usually a large weapon, and a ton of gore, this is totally "Resident Evil 4."

Gareth Evans uses some great tension and set pieces to create a super creepy story that makes his short from "V/H/S/2" seem like child's play and the standout performances of Michael Sheen and Mark Lewis Jones, this is one of the better Netflix's original films in quite a while.

Monday, October 22, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Night of the Comet

They sure don't make 'em like they used to make flicks like "Night of the Comet." But man, re-watching this one made me think of all the other films, TV shows, and even video games "Comet" had to have had or influence on, or at least gave a bit of INSPIRATION.

There are a lot of head fakes in this film, and just when you think it's going to be a straight up survival story of two teenage girls trying to fight off mutants effected by a passing comet it turns into a scientific conspiracy. It's wacky, but for some reason there is something so tacky, weird, and genuine about "Comet."

I recommend this to anyone who likes the FOX show "The Last Man on Earth," played "Dead Rising" or if you just like odd like B-films from the 80s with a quirky sense of humor and, hell, even some pretty solidly written female characters.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Halloween (2018)


After so much build-up, and i assume just my nervousness, apprehension, but unbridled love for the"Halloween" series, I guess the TORCH has been officially passed to a new generation, and it's just something that I'm going to have to face.

That isn't to say that I don't like what David Gordon Greene and Danny McBride have done here, but after watching this series for nearly 25 years of my life, or as long as I can remember renting "Halloween 4" from the video store on a weekly basis, it's odd seeing a modern take on something that I hold very dear. Erasing an entire mythology and basically saying everything you know hasn't happened, I liken it to how many "Star Wars" fans felt after "The Last Jedi."

However, through the mist, I do like the homages to some of the other films, and at least there is a decent explanation and reason how we got from 1978 to 2018, kind of a weak reason, but a reason nonetheless. But boy, there are some plot devices that just don't quite work for me, and aren't as earned for me as they might be for other people. But hey, what else can I expect from a horror remake, right?

Parting shot, not a huge fan of the re-done "Halloween" theme. Too busy, too much production, and it loses the synth-soul that the original had...

Thursday, October 18, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Rob Zombie's Halloween and H2


In order to expedite the process, and since I feel it appropriate to connect these two films together, I'm giving you guys a two-fer today with the EGO project that you might call "Rob Zombie's Halloween and Rob Zombie's Halloween 2" "H2," regardless, call it what you will.

The long and short and Zombie's vision is that it isn't horrible. It's shot expertly, makes you feel real grimy, like you are watching a documentary about Michael Myers and how he become the sister murdering, babysitter slaying enigma we know today, or if Zombie has anything to do with it, no longer an enigma.

If I've said it once, I've said it 100 times; the allure, at least to me, is that there is no reason for Michael Myers or why he kills...he's pure evil. I don't need an entire half of one film telling me how bad of a childhood Mikey had, I don't need it.

Oh, and you'll find this fun. With all the different versions of each film floating around, its a cool game to see what version you like since they could all impact each film and how it's perceived. I thought the Theatrical and TV version of "Halloween 2" was enough, geesh!

Sorry, let me step off my white horse... 

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Halloween: Resurrection


What can be said about "Halloween: Resurrection." This is a horror film firmly trapped and a victim of it's own era, and it honestly feels like the inmates are running the asylum while director Rick Rosenthal is tied up in a closet somewhere.

You would think that four years between "H20" and "Resurrection" something special could have been created, but instead we get the worst Michael Myers mask in the film's history, Busta Rhymes doing kung-fu and delivering and epic SPEECH about who Michael Myers isn't a headline or a news story, but instead a killer shark...yeah, that what we got this time around.

In the very least, "Resurrection" should give you a good laugh by how inane the dialogue is written and delivered by the cast, so I guess you can say this is by far the funniest edition in the series, which really says a lot...oh, but at least Katee Sackhoff is pretty rad.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Halloween H20


To be fair, this was the first time in a long, very long, time I actually sat down and watched "Halloween: H20." And honestly, it's not as bad as "The Curse of Michael Myers" and Dimension Films hedges their bets on a new crop of heartthrobs, WB drama starlets, and oh yeah, this is the first of two films where we get to see the acting talents of hip-hop royalty, namely LL Cool J in this film.

Seeing Jamie Lee Curtis back in the fold is fun and shows that she never forgot what film shot her to stardom, unlike some actors that like to forget that they were in a horror film...*cough*...Kevin*cough*Bacon*cough*

But after some atrocious outings, and this being the 20th anniversary, there was certainly an OBLIGATION to right the ship.

Monday, October 15, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Halloween 6: The Curse of Michael Myers


"Halloween 6: The Curse of Michael Myers," is TOMFOOLERY at its finest. My favorite idea behind this film is that the theatrical version is consider the incomplete version and the "Producer's Cut" is the "true" version that everyone needs to see to full appreciate this film.

Perhaps "Curse" is really just a film lost in it's own Mid-90s Dimension Films bubble where if you had Kevin Williamson write something it would probably sell and add a rockin' Alt-Rock soundtrack. Oh, and you think the "Halloween" theme was bad in "The Revenge of Michael Myers" this one is just as bad, and last parting shot...this is the film that killed Donald Pleasance, so you're all welcome...

Sunday, October 14, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers


You want some NONSENSE...either watch for the first time, or revisit "Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers." Telepathic links, mute nieces, costume contests, barn sex, metal nets, guys in cowboy boots, hats and wrist tattoos, this film's got it all.

Oh, and the "Halloween" theme for "Revenge" might be just as bad as the disco/techno version from "Halloween 2."

Saturday, October 13, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers


A lot of people will say "Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers" is where the series took a TURN for the worse.

But if you really think about it, "Return" is pretty much a paint-by-numbers remake of 1978's "Halloween." It has a lot of the same tropes, but the bodycount is higher and this is when it's finally established that Michael Myers is a uncontrollable killing machine that can warp around...much like Jason...and has otherworldly strength and power.

Pro-tip: If you have the means, listening to the audio commentaries with the director, Dwight Little, or any other commentary you can find on the Blu-Ray is well worth it.

Friday, October 12, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Copy Cat

#31FilmsofHalloween continues... With Copy Cat! #Copycat is a engaging film that keeps a good balance of intrigue & thrill. Sure, pretty much every aspect of tech appears outdated but overall the story holds up with Sigourney Weaver & Holly Hunter leading the way. Man, I really miss when studios would release films like this.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Halloween 3: Season of the Witch


Tonight it's time to tell you all how UNDERVALUED "Halloween 3: Season of the Witch" is and will always be.

"Halloween 3" is the classic case of this is why we can't have nice things. Newsflash folks; "Halloween" was never supposed to just be Michael Myers. We were supposed to get anthology films about the fear we all fell during the Halloween season, but thanks to characters like Jason Voorhees and Freddy Krueger, who all begin pumping out sequels on a yearly basis, the first "Halloween" film became a victim of it's own success and failed miserably.

Sure, the story is insane and involved Stonehenge and Halloween masks that kill kids when they hear a TV jingle and an evil cabal of old white men, but looking at this film now, it's just crazy enough to work and should have been a bigger success when it was released.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Halloween 2 (1981)


My retrospective continues with 1981's "Halloween 2."

Man, a lot changed in three years. Whereas "Halloween" was almost more of a thriller that happened to feature a maniac stalking and killing teens, "Halloween 2" fully embraced being a slasher film, especially after the success of "Friday the 13th" which took the original "Halloween" formula, upped the gore, sexy, and body count.

I also think your enjoyment of "Halloween 2" will depend on what VERSION you watch. If I could recommend the TV VERSION, yes, the TV VERSION, you'll be doing yourself a favor.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Halloween (1978)

In the lead-up to 2018's "Halloween," I'm kicking off my retrospective tonight. From the 1978 version all the way to 2009's "H2," or Rob Zombie's "Halloween 2," or whatever you might want to call it.

I feel like every year I either post a review about the original "Halloween," or just jabber on about it on the podcast. Maybe it's because, to me, it's one of the most important horror films I've ever seen.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of John Carpenter's "Halloween," and needless to say, this film has been TESTED, and it still holds up. I was able to enjoy it in a theater this year, on an original 35mm print, in it's native format, and enjoyed it just as much as the first time I saw it. Surrounded by a couple of newbies, and my wife, it was a different experience to see something that influential in a different prism.

But good God, I never realized how many times Linda (PJ Soles) says "totally" in this flick. I mean, I always knew she said it, but man, it's TOTALLY too many time....totally...

Monday, October 8, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Haunters: The Art of the Scare


Why do people like being scared, and why do people like to do the scaring? Is it a power trip? Is it a roleplaying element? Is it putting yourself in a situation where you feel like you are a minute away from dying but being able to do it in a controlled environment? "Haunters: The Art of the Scare," dives in the SUBCULTURE of people scaring and those wanting to be scared.

From homemade haunts, big budget productions and even into the SUBCULTURE that pushes people to their absolute breaking point in what can be called "legalized" kidnapping and torture with attractions like McKamey Manor, "Haunters" paints an interesting picture about our fascination with being scared and why we seek it out.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Murder Party


I know everyone is going crazy over Jeremy Saulnier's latest "Hold the Dark" (which I'll get around to later this month) but in order to get to that point in time one has to remember where he's come from, and that genesis starts with "Murder Party," which for my money might be one of my favorite directorial debuts in quite some time. It's CONFIDENT filmmaking, and while many will dismiss it in favor of "Blue Ruin" or "Green Room" or just chalk it up as messy, this film is tons of fun and has some shoehorned in social commentary on the New York art scene and what not.

It's funny, weird, full of in-jokes, and showcases that even though Saulnier might be the indie circuit's new savior, he also knows how to throw a party...of the most murderous variety.

Saturday, October 6, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Terrifier

It's difficult these days to create a horror icon. The last one that really comes to mind for me is Jigsaw from the "Saw" franchise, and some people might argue Annabelle and all that "Conjuring" crap, but Annabelle ain't Chucky, so that's settled law. Clowns came back in vogue with the remake of "IT" last year, and while Pennywise is a creep, Art the Clown is something else.

Without uttering a single word, Art's antics will give you quite the SHUDDER. "Terrifier" while not great, packs in enough blood, gore, and some really great practical effects in this grimy little slasher flick spun off from "All Hallows Eve." The film wraps up a nice little twist from the beginning of the film and of course opens the possible for Art's return, but do we really need a "Re-Terrifier?" Meh...

Friday, October 5, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: One Dark Night





One Dark Night is one letdown of a film. I was looking forward to a cast of Meg Tilly, Elizabeth Daily & Adam West. I had high hopes. The premise is great but the film takes you right to the end to bring out the goods. A missed opportunity that could be improved & released today.

Thursday, October 4, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Crash


Crash is unlike anything you've seen before. A movie about people with fetishism for car crashes is as original as you can get. This isn't a film for everyone, but its intriguing, dark and sexual on a few different fronts. Casting is fantastic in this Cronenberg directed film.

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Hereditary


Hereditary isn’t a perfect film. There are slow paced moments that drag on way to long and cheap tricks used to scare you. But from beginning to the end I was entertained more then I thought I would be going into it. Highlight is the cast with a great audio design and mix.  

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Hell Fest (2018)


Judging "Hell Fest" at its core, it's just one of those TYPICAL, mediocre, generic horror films that will be forgotten about as quickly as it was watched. Copy and paste millennial characters that you want to see die, well except Bex Taylor-Klaus, who I actually think plays her part with some heart and fun, but despite being the season for horror flicks, this is a letdown.

If you take "The Funhouse," "Dark Ride," and your experiences at Halloween Horror Nights, that's "Hell Fest" in a nutshell, and if you've ever read the Batman story, "Cacophony" you might appreciate the ending, but overall it will divide audiences by and large.

And hey, there are far worse films at the bottom of the Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, and Shudder heap than this addition to the horror lexicon, so strap on your cat ears, take the train cart to the Deadlands and go on a Hell Ride...if you dare.

Monday, October 1, 2018

31 Films of Halloween: Camp Death III in 2D


We get our share of e-mails asking to watch films, and for the most part, we take a little time to check them out and give our honest, Simplistic Reviews, opinion.

The latest is "Camp Death III in 2D" from our friends North of the Border in the mythical land of Canada. The easy way to explain the BONKERS slasher film lampoon is that if you went to Vancouver, got really baked, watched about 24 hours of Troma flicks, washed that down with some "Trailer Park Boys" smoked another bowl, marathoned "Meatballs," all of the "Friday the 13th" flicks, did a little acid, watched "Sleepaway Camp I and II" maybe took a nap, and get awoken suddenly by some Frank Zappa music, and you might be ready for "Camp Death III in 2D."

Click HERE for more information on "Camp Death III in 2D!

Monday, September 17, 2018

A Simplistic Review: The Predator (2018)


"The Predator" is probably going down as the biggest and dumbest film of 2018. But does that mean it's bad? Well....yes and no.

As part of the "Predator" mythos it works because you see things from the first two films including the spawn of Keyes as Gary Busey...and, uh, I guess thats about it.

The plot is inconsistent, the characters are bat-sh*t crazy, almost too over the top. it just makes for an extremely OFF-KILTER experience that bores you one minute and engages you the next.

I will say, there is a very funny, perhaps unintentional, but I'm sure intentional joke that involves Trevante Rhodes' character's name. Since I have a juvenile sense of humor I found it hilarious but it might go over a few people's heads if it has to do what I think it has to do with...I'll just leave that right here.

Saturday, September 15, 2018

A Simplistic Review: Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves


I just came to the realization that for a long time I've been getting Martin Campbell and Kevin Reynolds confused for a long time. They seem to travel in similar circles and have the same sordid film career that features maybe 1-2 good ones, and a lot of stinkers. "Robin Hood" Prince of Thieves" has always been one of my guilty pleasures. It's over the top, features at least three of the HAMMIEST performances you'll get out of early 90s film, the best of the bunch being Alan Rickman as the villainous Sheriff of Nottingham.

Also, pro-tip for you cinephiles out there, the Extended Cut or the Director's Cut, or the Sherwood Forest Cut, or whatever you want to call it, is only necessary is you want to see how much a creep the witch is.

Monday, September 10, 2018

(Ep. 110): The Simplistic Reviews Podcast: September 2018


The Simplistic Reviews Podcast is back from our August break and raring to go. And since we thought the show could use more of a fangirl touch, we got the biggest and best fangirl of them all, Jeanette Ward from The Mundane Adventures Of A Fangirl. And as gracious hosts, we immediately put Ms. Ward in the hot seat during another edition of Questions From The Crowd. The gang also go against their better nature while playing Say Anything. Shane Black, Cardi B Nicki Minaj Beef, and midichlorians...all things discussed on the latest episode of the Simplistic Reviews Podcast.

NOTES
Ray Liotta Commercial
Nicki Minaj & Cardi B Fight
Glass Noodles
Blockbuster Video 

MUSIC
60's Blues Rock Kinda Thing By Aaron Tosti
Gold Medal By Sounds Like Sander
Fast Times Club By Idols

A Simplistic Review: Heathers


The 80s and early 90s were an odd time. It seemed like you could get away with doing and saying anything despite the fact we were living in the middle of "Say No to Drugs" and a total PC-culture ruled by Reganomics, the fear of AIDS, and it just being an all around scary place to live.

And yes, they want to revive "Heathers" on TV, but could you honestly see another film like this being made for a mainstream audience anymore? School shootings, Trump-America, celebrity suicides, bullying, "Heathers" is all the TABOO one would ever need in their life. Shoot, sounds like the right time to bring it back...

A Simplistic Review: Back to School


Thanks to Netflix, me cutting the cord, and various other streaming services, I've had some time to catch up on a plethora of screwball comedies from the late 70s and into the 80s. And I've come to a conclusion; most of them aren't very good, or I should rephrase that; they have all AGED fairly poorly.

The best way to look at most of these films is through a bubble, or just a moment in time where anything goes. From "Animal House" and it's shenanigans, which depending on who you talk to I'm sure offends people now, to "Trading Places" which has Dan Akyroyd in blackface playing a Jamaican, it makes you stare in awe; like man, these guys gave no f*cks.

This brings me to "Back to School" which is innocent compared to a lot of other fare, but still features a pretty creepy Rodney Dangerfield. However, it's Rodney Dangerfield, so we kind of forgive him for what he does.

"School" is fine, but watching it again, the only thing I really care about is watching Oingo Boingo and Danny Elfman in his weird wifebeater and who Sarah Silverman copied that look on the "Mongolian Beef" episode of "The Sarah Silverman Show." Good times.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

(Ep. 109): Killing American Style - Movie Commentary: September 2018


Killing American style
1990 ‧ Thriller/Action ‧ 1h 30m

Well it's not Samurai Cop...

Welcome back to the Simplistic Reviews Movie Commentary! Today we pop in another Amir Shervan film, Killing American Style. It's the 80's and of course Amir will recycle from his masterpiece Samurai Cop; location, music and beefy men with long beautiful hair.  The terrible acting mix with cheesy fight scene is the best part along with its nonexistent script. Killing American Style is no Samurai Cop. It's not as funny nor crazy but still a entertaining film except for one thing - rape.

The amount of creepiness is beyond anything we have seen before. There really isn't a need for rape in a movie, especially when the story line doesn't call for it. A simple walk into the room with the door closing gets it point across, what we get here is out of control and unnecessary. Killing American Style is a fun Sunday film to drink and laugh at, just look at that title. But when your looking for another Samurai Cop don't look at Killing American Style, it's in a league of its own.
                       






Monday, August 27, 2018

A Simplistic Review: Adventureland


Maybe I've had a DELAYED reaction, but I actually really like "Adventureland." Sadly, when it was released it was sold as a screwball comedy in the vein of "Superbad" and every other Judd Apatow inspired comedy that had been released prior.

It'ss a coming-of-age flick, which I'm a sucker for, with some honest acting, and despite what people might say about Kristen Stewart and her sullen, angsty acting style, she works extremely well here, and I know people will always give her shit for her years in the "Twilight" films, but she's honestly perfect in her role here. If you're a "Freaks and Geeks" fan, "Adventureland" is the perfect companion piece. Oh yeah, music in the 80s will live forever in my heart and I can listen to Shannon's "Let the Music Play" on repeat....come at me.

Friday, August 24, 2018

A Simplistic Review: Hostiles


"Hostiles" should be one of those films that ends up on everyone's 'End of the Year Top Ten List' thing they like to do; it has a great cast, some awe-inspiring cinematography, timely socio-political commentary, and everything else that will get you on a list.

Low and behold, aside from an excellent performance by Christopher Bale, "Hostiles" is just kind of there and after a strong opening, it just kind of MEANDERS into it's 3rd act and ends with a typical 'happy' ending.

At the end of the day, I really like Scott Cooper as a director, he's a talent dude, but despite some memorable moments, his latest film is just kind of there.

Monday, August 20, 2018

A Simplistic Review: Won't You Be My Neighbor?


Of course this me is being cheeky, but there is a scene in this other wise poignant documentary where Fred Rogers essentially robs a Senator of 22 Million dollars after he tells him a story about the power of his show and PBS. I mean literally "Runs the Jewels" and keeps PBS alive while talking to an elected official like a child. If that's not Gangster, I don't know what is.

While I can't call myself a huge Mr. Roger's Neighborhood fan, the guy seemed liked a class act despite what appeared to be some serious inner anguish. 2018 doesn't deserve to have someone like Fred Rogers around, we don't deserve him, and "Won't You Be My Neighbor?" proves that being Christ-like and Christian and two totally different things.

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