Posts Tagged ‘The Patriot’

Project X – The Power Of Drunk People In Large Numbers

Posted 01 Jul 2012 — by Ezra Stead
Category Film Reviews, Movies I Didn't Get, Movies I Got

By Ezra Stead

Project X, USA, 2011

Directed by Nima Nourizadeh

Project X wastes very little time getting to what it does best: insanely over-the-top anarchy. In the past, I have never fully subscribed to the idea of a “guilty pleasure” movie. Sure, I unabashedly love a variety of questionable movies, from Julien Temple’s Earth Girls Are Easy (1988) to Uwe Boll’s Postal (2007), and I also have an ironic taste for some of the great cinematic disasters of all time, such as Claudio Fragasso’s Troll 2 (1990) and Tommy Wiseau’s The Room (2003). I even have a fondness for the films of Roland Emmerich that strains my credibility as a film critic, unless one accepts the fact that I consider them great unintentional comedies (especially The Patriot, which is absolutely side-splitting), but I’ve never really felt guilty about liking any of these films. However, while viewing first-time director Nima Nourizadeh’s Project X, I realized that a true guilty pleasure film is not one other people tell you is bad and you like it anyway; it is a film whose content makes you at least mildly uncomfortable regardless of anyone else’s opinion, yet you can’t deny that you enjoyed it overall.  Read More

Deep Blue Sea – A Gruesome Death Delivery System

Posted 03 Oct 2011 — by Ezra Stead
Category Film Reviews, Movies I Got

By Ezra Stead

Deep Blue Sea, USA / Australia, 1999

Directed by Renny Harlin

Deep Blue Sea is little more than a delivery system for gruesome death scenes, but at that it succeeds tremendously. I traditionally spend the entire month of October watching as many “scary movies” as possible, whether they be truly frightening psychological thrillers, big campy monster movies or anything with a flair for the occult. You know, Halloween-type movies. With that tradition firmly in place this year (since, unlike this time last year, I have what can be called a permanent address), I’ve decided to devote this month to actually writing about some of these films, whether new discoveries or old favorites I’ve decided to revisit, perhaps for the sake of finally writing about them. I will not, of course, cover every single movie I watch, but rest assured that for the rest of this month, you will see no reviews of stark, sober dramas or films with undeniably redeeming social value. It’s all chills, thrills, blood, guts and campy dark humor from here on out. My first entry is really more of an action movie, truth be told, but it does feature giant, super-intelligent sharks eating people, so I think it fits right in.

This is what could be called a guilty pleasure movie, from a director who knows how to make them. While he is not consistently as much fun as my personal favorite guilty pleasure director, Roland Emmerich (Independence Day, The Patriot, 2012), who seems to be intent on destroying the world in nearly every film he makes, Harlin has managed to crank out at least a few enjoyable entertainments, such as Cliffhanger (1993) and The Long Kiss Goodnight (1996). His 1999 film Deep Blue Sea, like the slasher movies it emulates by way of films like Ridley Scott’s Alien (1979) and John McTiernan’s Predator (1987), is less a compelling narrative than it is a sort of delivery system for gruesome death scenes. And that’s fine; when a film realizes its goal, however high or low that goal may be, it succeeds. It is in that spirit, then, that I present my loose, irreverent, spoiler-heavy review, in which we shall look at this film in the way it seems to demand: by examining its death scenes. Read More