The Pink Panther Snipes Again

Bad Movie Reviews with a Touch of Snark


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Cockneys vs. Zombies, or: It’s All Bubble and Squeak to Me

I can’t believe Horror Month, aka October, is drawing to a close. We lightened things up a bit this time around with what is destined to become a classic of British cinema. Christa’s review, as always, is here!

The Film:

Cockneys vs. Zombies

Where to Watch:

Netflix (US)

The Premise:

You don’t need a synopsis to understand what this film is about.  I believe in you.

The Uncondensed Version:

Things aren’t off to a great start for construction workers who uncover a plague pit while working. It’s probably not the best idea to explore the plague pit, but I would’ve done the same thing. How many opportunities will you really have to explore a plague pit in your lifetime?

One, as it turns out, esp. if the plague victims are zombies.

Our film really follows brothers Terry and Andy as they attempt to make an honest living, which is a challenge when their primary source of income is delivering meals on wheels. Added obstacle: their grandfather may be left homeless when his retirement home is demolished to make way for luxury apartments.

Though Grandpa stresses the value of hard, honest work, the Terry and Andy decide to rob a bank with the help of a questionable group of friends and family. This, of course, goes horribly wrong, but the swift and sudden outbreak of the zombie apocalypse is pretty convenient, honestly.

3

Disguises could use some work…

Meanwhile, zombies crash a birthday party at the retirement home. Grandpa is a WWII vet, so he’s reasonably prepared to wage war against the zombies. The film follows the bank robbers as they try to make it to the retirement home to save Grandpa.

6

Along the way, we lose quite a few of our filler characters who were really only here to die. I felt a teensy bit bad that I didn’t care when any of these characters died. However, I blame the film for failing to resonate emotionally. Or I’m a sociopath, whatever. IDGAF.

Ultimately, the bank robbers stockpile weapons and drive to the retirement home in a double-decker bus. It’s just like that scene in Spice World.

The Critique (back by popular demand):

Honestly, what’s not to like? Zombies + Cockney rhyming slang.

I may be reading too much into this one, but I think it was quite empowering regarding the more mature generation. Granddad drops the f bomb A LOT and uses his military strategies to keep himself and the others alive. In his words, “We’re old age pensioners—we’ve got to take care of ourselves!”

It’s a shame there aren’t more films in which old people use the word “fuck,” isn’t it? I feel that’s a more honest depiction of the elderly; I will be an incredibly foul-mouthed old cat lady with at least one cat named Lady Fuckoffanddie. Hopefully Judi Dench will make a movie where she cusses a lot and fights zombies. Or maybe Julie Walters. Julie Walters seems more the type, doesn’t she?

The downside was lack of character depth and how deliberately the film tried to be gross/offensive at times. As a whole, the older characters were more interesting and deserved more screen time.

The Rating:

Small Pink PantherSmall Pink PantherSmall Pink PantherHalf Pink Panther head 3.5/5 Pink Panther Heads

My mind kept going back to Grabbers, my fave horror-comedy we’ve reviewed, and this film isn’t quite as magnificent. I expected way more terrible dialogue, and I’m not sure if I’m more disappointed or relieved that it was mostly absent.

Goose’s Gregory Peck aahhht Christa’s review ‘ere. Rather, check out Christa’s here!

Obviously I had way too much fun with this Cockney rhyming slang translator.

Last stanza of “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” for example:

“I ‘ave Pearly Queen them ridin’ seaward on the chuffin’ waves combin’ the bloomin’ white Barnet Fair of the waves blahn Hammer and Tack when the wind blows the Ten Furlongs white and black. We ‘ave lingered in the chambers of the Housemaid’s Knee by sea-girls wreathed wif seaweed red and brown till ‘uman voices wake us, and we drahn.”


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Antisocial, Not a Description of This Blogger (For Once)

Horror Month, part 3! This week’s film is Christa’s pick. Do I really have to tell you where to find her excellent review? Here. It’s here.

The Film:

Antisocial

Where to Watch:

Netflix (US)

The Premise:

A zombie plague spreads very politely through social media in Canada.

The Uncondensed Version:

First of all, on a scale of 1 to Canadian, this movie is really fucking Canadian.

Instances of the word “aboot” instead of “about”: 86,357

Number of sweaters worn: 5,114

Apologies: countless

I guess you might want to know more about this film than that. Right? Maybe?

So there are these teen vloggers who have this sort of fashion vlog (I’ll stop using that word now, Christa). It all seems to be going rather swimmingly and one of them even looks like a character from Orphan Black, so I’m already on board. However, one suddenly attacks the other, who commits violent murder in self-defense.

Cut to Sam, who dresses exactly like Sarah from Orphan Black but with less eyeliner. Or maybe it’s just the way Canadians dress? It’s the same old storyline but via Skype: she’s pregnant, her boyfriend wants to take a break. Sick of this shit, Sam deletes a thinly disguised version of Facebook, the Social Red Room (which is a terrible name for a social media platform).

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Welcome to Clone Club.

Obviously with no social media to share her fabulous New Year’s plans on, Sam opts for pity party over party with friends. However, her friends have other plans and decide to throw a party at her place. There’s a lot of drinking, social media-ing, and burning of sparklers in the house (which is extremely unsafe and I do not condone).

2

YOU’RE GOING TO BURN THE HOUSE DOWN. IN THE LITERAL SENSE.

Everyone seems to be having a nice time until Jed, social media guru and Most Likely to Have Paranoid Conspiracy Theory to Explain Everything, starts tracking multiple updates about what is basically a zombie plague. Zombie people break up the party because obv they do, and 9-1-1 gives essentially a keep calm and carry on message.

The remainder of the film is Sam and her friends trapped inside, getting the virus one by one. Coincidentally, getting trapped at a party and not being able to leave is one of my phobias. Death by zombie plague would be a relief, honestly.

Other things that happen in this film:

  1. One of the characters gets a call from an unknown number and picks up; I call bullshit. Everyone knows you let that shit go to voicemail b/c it’s probably someone trying to tell you you’ve won a cruise.
  2. Jed loses his shit.
  3. One of the characters gets zombified and dies by hanging…from Christmas lights (I’m not nuts about Christmas either).

Guys, I just didn’t really get into this one, plus I’m having…not my favorite Monday ever. The sort of “social media will kill us all” theme felt kind of tired to me and just annoyed me. Will it? Will it really?

Am I too much of a millennial? IDGAF. I am who I am.

Ready for sleep. Seacrest out.

The Rating:

Small Pink PantherSmall Pink PantherSmall Pink Panther 3/5 Pink Panther Heads

Compare with Christa’s notes here!


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In Praise of Jillian

broadcity_110_abbi_carrying_ilana

I love you more than Broad City, even though it’s a close call, gurl!

Hellooooooo. I’m Christa of A Voluptuous Mind and I’m honoured to be guesting on The Pink Panther Snipes Again this evening!

I thought I’d talk about friendship. Jill and I have given each other free reign to write what we like so here goes… BUCKLE UP!

(Not really, it’ll be a smooth ride. I’m not sure why I typed that).

There used to be a time where, if you were going to make a new friend, it would either be in your place of work/school, in the pub toilets or at the bus stop. Or in my case, sitting on the steps at a party, cry eating (usually me, not them).

The thought that there could be people outside of ‘real life’ back in the mid-90’s would have blown my tiny mind. We didn’t even text then. But today you can make meaningful connections across the waves, and in the most unexpected places.

Furthermore, and I’m going to go balls out sappy in this post IDGAF, sometimes you meet someone from ‘out there’ and you think “Yes. This is exactly my sort of person.” – and then you’re in a long distance same-sex blog marriage, and that is that.

I really wanted to sit down and think about these words but it turns out that today is the day sent to test me and it’s been horrible, with no down time (AKA half an hour to an hour to look busy but actually be blogging). What is up with that? So I’m going to freestyle it.

Inspired by Day 19 of Writing 101 which prompted us to feature a guest, who else was I going to invite? Luckily, Jill thought it was a good idea and you know, ‘cos we’re both mavericks, we’re posting in our own sweet time, man. You’re not the boss of us, Cheri McWordpressington.

Jill is great and I’ll tell you why. Firstly, she swears and I have a lot of time for that. Secondly, she’s into shit movies and that is my life force. I appreciate the beauty of a shoddy horror movie, or a frankly bizarre story about homeless lesbians living in a bus station – the polar opposite of movie snobbery. Sure, good movies are all well and good but what’s the point if you can’t make sarcastic comments and question major segments of plot?

Once we’d bonded over Jillian’s reviews of the Sabrina films (as in Teenage Witch), I knew I was fully in love. I forget how I originally stumbled across The Pink Panther Strikes Again but the heady combination of the reference to my dad’s favourite movie franchise (Sellers ones only, obvs) and Jill’s profile picture kept me there. I’ve never looked back.

What I’m trying to say here is that our friendship means the world and I look forward to our weekly movie collabs more than anyone really knows. We’ve covered a lot of ground together this year, from the worst of the worst schlock horror to indie shock-fests to the very best LGBT gems Netflix has to offer – and far beyond.

I’d rent out my left boob to be able to actually sit on the same sofa and mainline popcorn while we watched movies together, but alas there’s an entire ocean between us. I trust the fates however, and one day perhaps that will be a thing.

I consider ours the most modern of friendships, one born of a mutual love of writing and film, to be nurtured just as much as an ‘IRL friendship’. Just as precious, and just as empowering.

And lest you think I’m only in it with my blog wife for her superior (?) film taste, I want it known that I also love her for her kitten pictures (if you haven’t seen Bertha Mason, I feel sorry for you, son), love of fit men, aversion to bows, natural snark and general pure awesomeness.

I love you, gurl!

giphy

Ps. I’m not sure my love of Broad City animated gifs are best utilised here but then again, it’s a comedy about a modern female friendship so *SHRUG*.


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Hellbound, or: Pinterest Is a Downward Spiral

Hellraiser pre-dates the Great Blog Collab, but I feel it’s one of the films that brought Christa and I together. We are both in love with the film, yet we haven’t seen any of the sequels, so it was kind of inevitable we’d review Hellraiser 2 during Horror Month. The sequel should be fun even if it’s exceedingly unlikely to be as good as the first. Let’s find out, shall we? You know the drill: Christa’s thoughts here all day, every day.

The Film:

Hellbound: Hellraiser 2

Where to Watch:

Netflix (US)

The Premise:

It’s the sequel to Hellraiser, guys. There are Cenobites and demon Rubik’s cubes.

The Uncondensed Version:

This film gives you a convenient recap of Hellraiser in case you haven’t seen it or have forgotten what it’s about. So in Hellraiser there’s a demon Rubik’s cube that Kirsty uses to send Pinhead and the other Cenobites back to hell. Before that can happen, she loses her father because her stepmother is trying to resurrect Kirsty’s uncle through blood sacrifice, and Kirsty’s father just happens to be one of the victims.

It’s probably surprising to no one that this whole experience was pretty traumatizing for Kirsty. As our film opens, she has been institutionalized. (Some of the asylum scenes inevitably reminded me of The Pink Panther Strikes Again, so it was difficult to take them seriously.) This seems to be bad news as (a) Kirsty’s stepmother is kind of living in the mattress she died on and can still be resurrected, (b) one of the doctors at the asylum seems to perform some really unethical surgeries and likes to talk about the final solution, and (c) Kirsty has repetitive nightmares that her father is in hell and she must save him.

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Not subtle as far as a cry for help goes.

However, Kirsty’s probably not getting out any time soon, esp. as she keeps shouting things like “You have got to destroy that mattress!”

Two people who are going to be important: Kyle, a sympathetic doctor, and Tiffany, aka Puzzle Girl. Kyle decides to help Kirsty after witnessing Julia, the stepmother, resurrect in a rather disturbing manner and sort of eating some dude’s brain. Julia has basically everything she needs except skin, so in a rather Silence of the Lambs­-y move, she makes herself a suit from the skin of other women. This is where the timeline gets a bit screwy to me b/c presumably Kyle doesn’t wait days to weeks to help Kirsty after realizing she was telling the truth about her stepmother being demonic. But it would be hard to kill and skin half a dozen people really quickly even if you’re undead, right? Like it would probably take you at least 3 or 4 days I would think, not including sewing time? Whatever, it’s not super important to the plot I suppose.

To be fair, pretty disturbing.

To be fair, pretty disturbing.

Anyway, since Tiffany can’t resist solving puzzles, the doctor and Julia give her the Rubik’s cube of doom to solve. She inevitably does, which of course summons the Cenobites, including Pinhead (who I can’t stop mentally calling “Pinterest”). Two points here: (1) I don’t remember Pinhead speaking at all in the first one, so it was surprising when he started talking in this really deep, booming voice, and (2) the word “Cenobite” is just brilliant, isn’t it?

Obviously you can't mention Hellraiser without including a still of Pinterest.  Pinhead.  Damnit.

Obviously you can’t mention Hellraiser without including a still of Pinterest. Pinhead. Damnit.

So since solving the cube opened the portal to hell, everyone is pretty much just wandering around hell at this point. OF COURSE there’s a carnival part with the creepiest baby ever with its lips sewn shut. Shudder.

WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY.

WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY.

This might be spoiler-y, but I think it’s pretty obvious that Julia is just using the doctor. I don’t think it should surprise anyone when Julia betrays him and sacrifices him to the Leviathan, which is…a box. With sort of vine/tentacle hands. This leads to the doctor becoming a Cenobite with pretty cool snake hands and truly terrible lines about the doctor being in.

Ultimately, everyone is pitted against everyone else: Kirsty/Tiffany vs. Julia, Cenobite Dr. vs. Other Cenobites, Julia vs. Cenobite Dr., Kirsty/Tiffany vs. Cenobite Dr., etc.

I’m going to be honest, most of the fight scenes are pretty lame. I feel like most of the budget went into animating the snake hands. Surely you’d rather find out for yourself what happens? You can probably guess—I believe in you.

The Rating:

Small Pink PantherSmall Pink PantherSmall Pink PantherHalf Pink Panther head 3.5/5 Pink Panther Heads

Largely for consistency. I gave Hellraiser 4/5, and I don’t think this is quite on the same level. The plot made way less sense, and the doctor was kind of disappointing as an antagonist. Julia and Pinhead deserved way more screen time. Realistically, Hellraiser deserves a higher rating, but we are moving forward, not backwards.

You know Christa has a lot to say about this one here!


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It’s Always Sweater Weather

My blog wife Christa, A Voluptuous Mind, tagged me in this questionnaire about autumn. Do you honestly think I’m not going to jump at the opportunity to combine several of my most favorite things? Also counting this as a Writing 101 post just so you guys know I’M NOT A QUITTER. Let’s do this.

Favourite candle scent? I don’t really like to burn candles (esp. with added Bertha Mason-induced paranoia about leaving things burning), but I suppose apple or pumpkin is acceptable for the season.

Coffee, tea, or hot chocolate?  TEA. TEA. A THOUSAND TIMES TEA.

What is the best fall memory you have? My family and I used to go on a not-so-scary haunted hayride at a local farm when I was a kid. I got to pick out a pumpkin to carve, drink hot apple cider, and pet goats. There were also llamas and a Scottish Highland bull!

Best fragrance for fall? Not really into perfume, so my own natural scent.

Favourite Thanksgiving food? Dill rolls. Is it obnoxious that the dish I make every year is my fave? They’re pretty fucking fantastic, though. Pumpkin cheesecake, which is infinitely preferable to pumpkin pie, is a close second.

Most worn sweater?  Robin’s egg blue Mr. Rogers-style sweater that probably deserves to retire. I want to be buried in that sweater.

Football games or jumping in leaf piles? Leaf piles. Duh.

Favourite type of pie? Apple berry, but I accept all varieties of pie.

What is autumn weather like where you live? Fluctuates wildly. It usually lasts for about a week, when it’s mild, sunny, and full of colorful leaves. Then everything suddenly dies overnight and it’s frigid and gray. This year it’s been a nice but suspiciously warm autumn. The leaves are turning and looking gorgeous right now.

Which make-up trend do you prefer, dark lips or winged liner? You’re lucky if I’ve brushed my hair, world. I like the winged liner look, but I would lose an eye if I attempted it. I’m just going to have to admire the look and be a teensy bit envious that it’s a thing other people can pull off.

What song really gets you into the fall spirit?  Nothing in particular, but I’ve been listening to a lot of Neko Case at the moment.

Is pumpkin spice worth the hype? Eh, not really. I prefer apple and/or butternut squash to pumpkin-flavored things.

Favourite fall TV show? Battlestar Galactica is appropriate year-round.

Skinny jeans or leggings? I don’t really wear either of these things. I may be wearing a greater number of leggings in the future as I seem to have acquired several librarian skirts, and it is my goal to avoid shaving for (at least) a solid six months.

Combat boots or Uggs? Tennis shoes. As a bigfoot, shoe shopping is the bane of my existence and I avoid it at all costs.

Halloween – yay or nay? YAY. Why is this even a question???

Fall mornings or evenings?  I suppose mornings at the moment? All of the above, though, honestly.

What do you think about Black Friday?  It fills me with terror.

One fall 2015 trend you love?  SWEATERS. I don’t think that’s necessarily a fall 2015 trend, but I don’t care. Sweaters are TIMELESS.

FIN.

Also supposed to tag 10 or so people, but I don’t think I know 10 bloggers I want to tag. Here are 5, halfway between the number I’d like to tag (0) and the number I’m supposed to tag (10):

Fannie Frankfurter

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Internet

Kelsey’s Journey

Sash Around the Clock

Simply Marquessa


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Starry Eyes, or: Those Satanists Are Ruining Hollywood

I’m not going to apologize for this review because I CANNOT stop apologizing to absolutely everyone at my new job, and I’m driving myself nuts. Still, I’m somewhat embarrassed about the quality of this post. Horror Month is kicking off not with a bang, but with a whimper. On the bright side, it could be worse.

I promise you Christa’s review is full of snark but lighter on the self-deprecation. Read here!

The Film:

Starry Eyes

Where to Watch:

Netflix (US)

The Premise:

A struggling actress gets an offer that seems too good to be true…because it’s an offer from Hollywood Satanists.

The Uncondensed Version:

Our story is your basic struggling actress plot but with a horror twist. Sarah is a waitress who works for what is essentially the Hooters of tater tots. She’s a fairly typical character except she isn’t very nice to herself, and does this rather painful-looking hair yanking thing whenever she messes something up.

It doesn’t help that her friends are kind of shitty, including a frenemy who rubs it in Sarah’s face when she gets a part they both auditioned for as well as that one creepy dude friend. The acting career isn’t really taking off, so Sarah jumps at the opportunity to star in the rather sketchy The Silver Scream. She’s desperate, so she doesn’t even care that the people she’s auditioning for are super judgmental and detached, telling her directly that she has to impress them or she’ll be forgotten like thousands of other girls. After presumably fucking up this audition, Sarah goes into the bathroom and does her hair-pulling routine.

KEEP IT TOGETHER, SARAH.

KEEP IT TOGETHER, SARAH.

Oddly, she is called back to the audition and asked to repeat the hair-pulling performance. Instead of being creeped out and getting the fuck out like a normal person, Sarah obliges. Even though she thinks the audition went horribly, she gets a call back.

The second audition is even weirder, and she has to get naked in a dark room while a camera takes her picture with a blinding flash. RUN, SARAH.

After all of this, Sarah gets a meeting with the producer who is, of course, a creepy old man. He goes on about people worshipping the god of debauchery and all of the weirdos in Hollywood before being a complete perv. Sarah hesitates to cross that line, but eventually returns as the lure of stardom is too great. During this second meeting, it becomes clear the producer is a Satanist or at least really into summoning demons and occult worship.  Maybe I’m being unfair because I’m not really sure what a Satanist looks like or what a Satanist believes.

GROSS.

GROSS.

Shortly after, Sarah’s friends become concerned by her sudden sleazy/violent behavior. Things rapidly go from bad to worse, and we get our first truly disgusting scene of the film that involves pulling her own fingernails out, bleeding from everyfuckingwhere, and throwing up maggots. Honestly the fingernail part was the vilest bit of this film to me. If you can watch it without wincing, more power to you.

I suppose I shouldn’t give every last detail away, so let’s just say there’s a lot of bloody murder at the end. A LOT.

The Rating:

Small Pink PantherSmall Pink PantherSmall Pink Panther 3/5 Pink Panther Heads

Eh…there was nothing in particular to dislike about this film, but I also didn’t get really into it. It’s nice that this was a horror story with a purpose, but I felt it was a bit lacking in oomph.

About halfway through, I wondered where all the blood and guts were and why no one had died yet. Admittedly it got pretty disgusting, but I had to wait a damn long time (those fingernails, man. Haunting my dreams tonight).

Idk, guys, have I just lost any semblance of an attention span?

Check out the brilliance that is Christa’s review here!