Thursday, March 31, 2016

Day 2: The Relic (1997) 1h 50min

Surprisingly, both The Relic and The Fury had a few things in common: First, both are primarily set in Chicago; Second, both heroines say "you go to hell!" before the big baddie explodes; Third, both of these movies fucking suck!

The relic starts out with an anthropologist photographing an indigenous Brazilian tribe during a ritual.  At one point he is handed a cup of something to drink which he does without question.  Now, I know this is a horror movie but there's still that part of me that thinks that he is the dumbest person ever for just blindly drinking something that no one else has had yet.  This of course leads to a terrible psychoactive response and he cowers on the floor of a hut crying and hiding from the Kothoga (a.k.a. Mbwun) while the tribes people kind of fuck with him.

Eventually he stows away on a ship that he thinks the items he bought and/or stole from the tribe are on, only to realize they're not.  He breaks down and the camera shows a ton of crates still on the dock as the ship leaves.  How the dock workers missed something like 15 big crates I'll never know, but this movie needed something to add plot because up until now I haven't cared.  This is a trend that will continue through this movie.  Not the poor plot progression, just that I couldn't be bothered to care.

So the ship arrives, everyone is dead with their heads cut off.  We meet our detective and are instantly made aware of his obsession with luck and superstitions.  This works out great because guess what the Chicago Museum is about to open a giant exhibit about?  Which is a total lie as none of the things in the exhibit are superstitions!  They're all the religions of other cultures past and present from across the world.  There is a statue of Pan and a door which has an orphic egg and the veve for Baron Samedi on it as well as some other symbols some set designer stole from a sacred symbols book.  It's the most bullshit and offensive thing in this movie next to when the one professor makes a comment that totally ignores the religion of the Brazilian tribe and puts it into the catholic mythology.

To once again pull from my notes, the description I have of the exhibit is as follows:
"What faux pagan bullshit is this?  Orphic Egg, Ghede veve, tribal shit, jungle, pyramid, Pan? Bullshit superstitions exhibit!"

Anyway, crates arrive, one is full of leaves that have some strange fungus/parasite on them and the crate and leaves are ordered to be burned... except our heroine, Dr. Margo Green (whose name I had to IMDB because I didn't remember) decides that keeping a few in a fridge is a smart idea.  Everyone is fucking up in this movie in the worst ways.

From here comes the best anti-drug PSA when the night security guard goes to the bathroom for a little "smoke break."  He only gets about three hits in when the monster grabs him, pulls him into the next stall, bites his head off, and eats his hypothalamus.  Actually this might be a PSA against hooking up in men's rooms too.

I'm skipping to the end now because the rest is pointless and I was so far from being entertained with this movie I can't be bothered to write about it.  The monster eats the fungus/parasite on the leaves to live and the same chemical is in the human hypothalamus.  A gala happens and it's an all-you-can-eat-rich-asshole buffet for the Kothoga.  We finally see the monster, and if you ever saw the first Ghostbusters movie, then think of the demon dog things that Rick Moranis and Sigourney Weaver turn into, with the mouth of a Predator, but not as cool as it sounds.  Margo eventually covers a lab in chemicals, makes a bomb with science, and blows the thing up while hiding in a water tank meant to rot the flesh off of specimens.  Oh, P.S. the monster was the original anthropologist transformed from drinking that stupid shit I said at the very beginning he shouldn't have drank!

I can't picture myself liking this if I had seen it when it came out, but I also had questionable taste in music and film then, so I might have really liked it and hated myself for it later.  Every character in this film can fuck off on a flaming rocket ship into the sun.  This movie made me want to watch Ghostbusters which is a far superior film with great story telling, plot, and characters.  The Relic is a turd sandwich on a paper plate that's been left in a locked car with the windows up on a hot day.

I give this movie one Kothoga statue out of five:

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Day 1: The Fury (1978) 1h 57min

If I hadn't seen other, much better, horror films from the this time, then based on this movie I would assume that people in the 70's would piss their pants in fright every time bread popped out of their toaster as toast.  Seriously, look at that movie cover and you'd think that Kirk Douglas was trying to get away from some sort of two headed monster.  I could get into that.  In reality though this movie is more akin to a shitty version of Taken with secret government agencies and ESP powers.

For a majority of the movie it's two parallel plot lines where Kirk Douglas is trying to get his "gifted" son Robin back from a shady government agency that makes him think that Kirk is dead. The other story line is of a teenage girl named Gillian that also has ESP powers and horrible friends.  I assume the writer of this movie was really into the Silva Mind Method because there's a huge explanation of how you can channel Alpha waves to have psychic powers followed by a strangely long "look at these people's faces over and over" scene while Gillian moves a model train with her mind.  The train eventually wrecks... RIP tiny train passengers...  Gillian is clearly a monster.

The two eventually cross paths and lameness ensues as they then try to track down Kirk Douglas' son, who in truth, has turned into a huge douche-cicle.  Robin has now intensified his powers through what I assume is some form of forehead kegels which make two of his veins throb while doing telekinesis.  It's gross.  It makes me think of the antenna on the old Sectaurs toys (go ahead, look them up, I'll still be here when you're done).

Eventually Robin goes completely off his shit, kills his professor/girlfriend-ish-person by making her bleed from everywhere, then subs the actress with a terrible mannequin and spins that around in the air like some lady-dreidel.  Kirk Douglas and Gillian do a shit job of sneaking in thanks to Gillian screaming like an idiot and are caught by John Cassavetes' men.  I didn't mention he's in this up to this point because his character is the generic government bad guy but he has a sweet death coming up, so get hyped!  Kirk Douglas and Robin eventually meet again, Robin flies (literally flies) at Kirk and both tumble out a window and down the roof.  Kirk tries to save Robin, Robin claws Kirk's face and Kirk promptly drops that asshole to his death.  After a moment Kirk realizes what he's done and throws himself sloppily from the roof too.

My notes for that scene are as follows:
"I'll save you son! Nah! Fuck you, son! Nah! Fuck me!"

Before Robin dies he looks into Gillian's eyes and their eyes glow for some reason.  Maybe this is the "fury" this movie is supposed to be about?  I don't fuckin' know!  But this leads a scene at a later time where John Cassavetes is telling Gillian that everything is okay and he's going to help her.  She kisses his eye which then blinds him and turns him into the Frankenstein monster apparently as he just stumbles around the room with his arm out, yelling and swinging wildly at the decor.  Gillian says "You go to hell!" and I instantly began wishing for a Scanner's style death, which I got in spades!  In the 70's doing things like full body explosions was a one shot deal, so you got every camera you could get, in every angle, and then film that shit!  The last two minutes of the film is just different angles of John Cassavetes exploding over and over.

This movie was awful, but at least it ended on a high note.  However, the low notes during the movie are pretty fuckin' low.  Nobody can take a bullet in this movie, including the person that gets shot in the center of his forehead and then continues to drive a car for about a minute.  Kirk Douglas slaps Gillian at one point, and that's not cool.  Don't give me that "it was a different time" shit. It was bad, and you should feel bad.  There is also a scene where a woman goes through a windshield and the glass is just straight up window glass, not safety glass.  Also, a car crashes into a lake and then explodes on impact.  Fuck this movie.

I give it two soulless Kirk Douglas heads out of five, and that's only because there's a scene where Gillian is playing a Fairchild Channel F video game console .