Friday, March 27, 2009

My Favorite Thing of the Day...

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Badly Dubbed Swedes, Underfinanced Undead Fascists, and Rondo

Let the Right Words In

I’m one of those guys who hates it when they dub foreign films. The “actors” supplying voices never seem to catch the subtle nuances of the original actor’s performance – most of the time they sound like they’re dubbing a kids cartoon. But the case of the recent US DVD release of Let the Right One In, turns out the subtitles were fucked, not the dubbing. Some industrious folks at Icons of Fright who discovered that the subtitles on the US release were “dumbed down” from the international version.





Here’s an example:
Before (international)

















After (US cock-up)




















What the fuck?? According to The Digital Bits, fan outcry has prompted Magnet releasing to issue a new DVD version with the original, better international subtitles. Unfortunately, there are no plans as of yet to allow those who purchased the old version to exchange it for the new.

HOWEVER, for us Canadians, we’re in luck. Kevin at The Lobby has informed me that the subtitles on the Canadian DVD release are the correct international ones. Yeay Canada! And a special toast to the folks at Mongrel Media, Canadian distributors of the DVD, for not dropping the ball on this one.
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Worst Case Funding Scenario

For those who attended last year’s Horror Fest at Metro, one of the highlights was a trailer for a movie that didn’t even exist. The trailer was called Worst Case Scenario, and the premise of Nazi Zombies got everyone giving the ol’ “heil” from their pants.

The trailer was more or less a demo reel for filmmaker Richard Raaphorst to try to get funding for a potential feature version.

Well, there’s some bad news. Twitch Films is reporting that the project is deader than old Adolph himself (unless his head IS actually in a jar or robot somewhere). Raaphorst and his producers were unable to secure financing, so they’ve effectively dropped the project.

The good news? THIS is what they’re doing with their spare time:























Can I get a “FUCK YEAH”?

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Rue Rondo

Congrats to our fiendish friends over at Rue Morgue Magazine for snagging FOUR coveted 2009 Rondo Awards!

The Morguers won in the following categories:
Best Magazine: Rue Morgue.
Best Article: "Coffin Joe Resurrected,'' by Scott Gabbey and Jovanka Vuckovic
Best Magazine Cover: Issue #83, a portrait of Forrest Ackerman by longtime Famous Monsters artist Basil Gogos
Best Horror Audio Site: Rue Morgue Radio

Also, Joe Moe was voted “Monster Kid of the Year”. Who’s Joe Moe? Joe’s the fan turned caretaker to the legendary, late Forrest J. Ackerman. Moe spent more than ten years acting as “friend. adviser and caregiver” for Ackerman. I’ve had the pleasure of talking with Joe on a couple of occasions via Facebook, and although much of the collection at the Ackermansion is getting auctioned off, I have no doubt that Joe will carry on Forrest’s legacy in style.

Friday, March 20, 2009

OFF THE RAG

My Leprechaun/Guinness evening didn’t turn out quite like I’d planned. After two beers, and sitting through half of the first film, I fell asleep. I mean, sure, he killed a guy with a pogo stick, but other than his little outfit, there wasn’t much about Leprechaun that got me in an Irish mood. Warwick Davis’ piss-weak brogue and the casting of Jennifer Aniston didn’t help (although we all know that the Greeks are the natural enemy of the Irish).


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OK, the Sorority Row trailer released today didn’t really put the stiff breeze in my skin flute, so I thought I’d write about something not so recent. In fact, I’ve made up a new regular feature: OFF THE RAG!

What is OTR? Well, every week or so, I’m going pick a movie that was widely panned upon its release and defend it because, well, I’m an asshole, but also because I liked the fucker. I’m going to take a movie everyone ragged on and take it OFF THE RAG! Get it? (Harry Knowles would be proud at my use of bodily secretions for a movie review).

First up is a movie I picked up for a buck-fitty at Best Buy over the holidays: X-Files: I Want to Believe. For much of 2007-2008, I was psyched over the return of Mulder and Scully to big screens. Adding to the anticipation was the fact that this movie would steer away from the conspiracy story arc that dominated the series, and focus on a monster-of-the-week type plot.

Early trailers didn’t give much away. Unfortunately, it turns out there wasn’t much to give away. Released a week after the Dark Knight, audience reception was poor and reviews were scathing, comparing it to a mediocre episode of the series at best. So like a chump, I avoided seeing it in theatres. This might have been a good thing.

I was bored last week, and it was a typical snow-covered turd of a day here in dEdmonton, so I popped open an afternoon beer, and popped in the DVD – and I actually enjoyed the fucker. The plot, which I’ll run through briefly, concerns Mulder and Scully, now a couple that occasionally skronk (let’s call them “Sculder” ala “Bennifer” and “Brangelina”), called back into action by the FBI. Scully is a doctor at a churchy type hospital and Mulder just sits at home growing a fake beard, so the excitement is welcome. The feds need their help on the case of a missing FBI agent, a case whose only lead seems to have come from the mind of a former pedo-priest-turned-psychic (Billy Connelly). The investigators, led by Amanda Peet and (sigh) X-hibit wanna know if Father Joe is really psychic or just pulling stuff out of his ass. After a few conversations, and a chase or two, Connelly eventually leads Sculder to the abductors – some freaky Russian head-swapping scientists looking to take sex changes to a whole new level.

Plot wise, yeah it seemed like director-writer-guru Chris Carter just raided the vaults for some unused scripts, but somehow the movie kinda gelled with me. The icy, snow bound setting and brilliant cinematography were as moody as any classic X-file, Duchovny and Anderson slipped right back into their roles with ease, and Billy Connelly’s Father Joe was a standout. Sure, there were no monsters (other than a two-headed dog), and both the gore and grue were limited, but the gruesome bits that made it onscreen were effectively chilling. Also, the whole Russian head grafting angle was well played – these fuckers were actually trying this stuff back in the 1950s, and many two headed dogs actually did ensue.

I do have one major issue with the film, and I’m going to post a major spoiler in hopes that when you watch this, you’ll shut it off when the credits start rolling. After said credits, we see Mulder and Scully clad in beach wear, rowing a boat to some tropical island. I shit you not. Is this an X-files movie or some fucking Matthew McConaghey-Kate Hudson romcom? Maybe Chris Carter felt all the snow was too depressing, so he tacked on a vacation scene for the test audiences.

Anyways, yeah my expectations were in the shitter, and watching it on the small screen probably helped with the average plot, but Carter and co. did a lot of things right, and took a lot of chances. They could have opted for a big-bang return of TV’s favourite feds; instead, they told a more intimate, thoughtful, character-based story. The problem was that after such a long hiatus, the fans wanted more. Plus, the whiz-bang summer competition made X-Files pale in comparison. I get the feeling that if Fox has released this in late fall, it would have done a hell of a lot better than it did.

So go plunk down your cash and at least rent the fucker, so Fox can at least justify another sequel and we can get the return of one of the classic freaks, like Tooms or the inbreds.
Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Shamrocks, Shenanigans, Aliens and Predators...

Happy St. Paddy's Day - to paraphrase Kevin from The Lobby, don't be too much of a pylon.

St. Paddy's Day is also NEW RELEASE DAY! Unfortunately, pickings are slim. There's only one new release I'm "gunning" for, and that's the new Punisher: War Zone. I heard great things, but unfortunately this had the shelf life of Chinese chocolate and got pulled from theatres before I had a chance to catch it.

My other acquisition for today:
I figure, why fight the legions of drunken, pants-shittingly-drunk frat boys gorging themselves on piss weak beer dyed the color of Paris Hilton porno night vision when I can pick up this triple-cheese-fest, snag a sixer of Guinness, and bask in Irish stereotypes.

Unfortunately, this set doesn't include the prestige films Leprechaun 4: In Space, Leprechaun in the Hood, and Leprechaun: Back 2 Tha Hood. Those films were a pot o'gold. Well... a pot of something anyways.

Now, I haven't actually seen any of the first three movies, so after viewing them tonight I may very well need to drown my sorrows in green ale, get pissed, and punch people in the face to the tune of Dropkick Murphys.

By the way, if Hollywood is so desperate for remake fodder, why not remake Leprechaun? You could hire Tom Cruise to star....




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In other news, AICN posted this great article. These are New Zealand ads to promote screenings of Alens Vs Predator on SkyTV





Sadly, AVP: The Hustler, AVP: Shuttlecock, and AVP: Searching for Bobby Fischer sound more exciting than the last two movies.
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And finally, kudos to Jason and the gang at Happy Harbour Comics for raising over $2000 for Big Brothers and Sisters of Edmonton this past weekend. 19 budding local artists came out for the 12 Hour Comic Challenge and not only raised money, but came up with a 12 page comic book! Also of note, Happy Harbour and The Paint Spot are both chipping in .10 cents for every dollar raised, and Jason also hopes to reprint the comic soon.
Cheers, guys!
Thursday, March 12, 2009

Happy Voorhees Day!

Just cause it's F13:
















Fuckin' campers.

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My ignorance over the years has blinded me to a great local event - so let me rectify this right now:

This weekend, head down to Happy Harbour Comics and support a great cause. It's their annual 12 HOUR COMIC CHALLENGE, so whether you're a budding comic artist or a comic fan, come check out the great vibe and the cool staff. And most importantly, the artists will be raising money for the Big Brothers and Sisters of Edmonton. Each artist will attempt to raise a minimum of $50 for the cause, and sponsor The Paint Spot will donate $0.10 for every dollar raised.

The shenanigans start this Saturday, March 14 at 9:30AM at Happy Harbour's downtown location (10112 - 124 St.). The registration deadline has passed, but come out and lend your support anyways.

Most comic shops are content to gouge patrons out the ass, so it's refreshing to see a great place like Happy Harbour come out and support their community. Even if you can't make it for the 12 Hour Challenge, go check out all the great shit they have to offer. Maybe they'll even tell you if the Dr. Manhattan 12" action figure is anatomically correct. Blue dong.

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As much buzz as i've heard about the (as-yet-to-be-seen-cause-i'm-a-lazy-fucker) Watchmen movie, the one I'm really psyched about this weekend is the remake of Last House on the Left. What's getting my popo excited? The original was a classic, but not exactly one of horror's hallowed grounds, so it's good fodder for a remake. Also, after reading recent interviews with the original's director (and exec producer of the remake) Wes Craven, it seems he had a big hand in the project. Add to that a European director with some indie cred under his belt - rent his first film Hardcore at The Lobby - and it seems like the kind of winning formula that made the remake of Hills Have Eyes such a kickass experience.

Gotta say, to date, 2009 has been a decent year for remakes. Not a PG-13 shitfest in the bunch. My Bloody Valentine 3D was one of the best movie experiences I've had in a long time, and Friday the 13th split horror fans right down the middle yet still racked up $50 million on its opening weekend. Hopefully Last House '09 continues the remake streak.

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In case you hadn't seen it...

Friday, March 6, 2009

Dear See Magazine...

re: this week's cover


I fixed it for you:


So I heard plenty o' bitchin' and whinin' about Watchmen, released this weekend. I've heard plenty of raves too, but the bitchin' seems to stand out the most. So I'd like to respond to the fanboy cranky-pant-iness with a few choice words: Bride Wars. Tyler Perry's Medea Goes to Jail. He's Just Not That Into You. Jonas Brothers 3D. The Pink Panther 2.

Maybe Watchmen is a movie that indeed should not have been made - not because the story isn't good, but because in today's test-marketed, carefully manipulated, low-risk Hollywood, ingenuity and vision is rarely rewarded. So just be fuckin' happy someone tried.

P.S. Hey Alan Moore... smile a little, dude.


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In dEdmonton news: THE CREEPSHOW ARE COMING!!!

If you haven't seen Toronto's Creepshow, quit pickin' your ass and get tickets. This is power pop-punk with a hefty helping of halloweeny hellfire... and they're playing New City Suburbs this Wednesday. Guests include Australia's The Regulators and Calgary's Scorched Banditos.

I've seen these guys three times already, and they never disappoint. And with Ticketbastard scalping their own events, it's a great time to come out and support independent bands. Plus they have amazing t-shirts designed by Rue Morgue Magazine's own Ghoulish Gary Pullin!

If you need more convincing,
a. you're a douchebag
b. see videos below.








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To hell with the Real Doll...




I spent thirty bucks on this and I don't regret it. Scare the fuck out of your coworkers, entertain your dog, or use it to fetch beer.

If you'd like your very own Dedhead, go see Mike and Joanne at Mars and Venus, on Whyte Avenue two doors down from Elephant and Castle.

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