Monday, July 31, 2017

This is my malfunction. I can't be 'meh' about anything.

Look, we were all in high school at one point. We all got off on hating that shit that everybody else loved, right? I did, you did, we all did. Well, except that one guy, he was too cool to hate...or like...anything. A real trendsetter he was...never setting a trend.

But, man...I'm telling you, there's this trend going around that I refuse to participate in. Like, I'd rather be caught licking ice cream of a dead donkey's dick, then to perpetuate this black eye on the jizz-riddled face of humanity. Maybe it's because I'm a teacher (a shitty one), or maybe it's because I'm a 'blogger' (also a shitty one), but I can't stand the constant need for shortcuts in everything writing. So it should be pretty clear when I say:

I f--king hate emojis. Hate every stupid f--king thing about them.

This is clearly the work of Satan.
But I love my kids. And being that it's my daughter's birthday, and my adorable little angel devours those awful things, I had to take her and her brother to see The Emoji Movie. But didn't you just say you loved you kids? 

Good point.

I'm not going to say that I enjoyed any aspect of this dreadful movie, but after hearing that it was possibly the steamiest of steaming piles of dogshit, I hate to report that it's really not that bad. Oh, it's terrible, uninspired, hopelessly boring and sends likely the worst message to kids in the history of time, sure.  But, uh, what would one reasonably expect from something called The Emoji Movie? I mean, at least it's not eighty-six minutes of an older gentleman acquiring Tin Roof from the shaft of a decaying ass. Uh, why do you keep typing that?

Because, uh, obviously, there's no emoji for it.

But what there is an emoji for is 'meh', and perhaps shockingly, he's is the star of our film. Yep, it turns out the little shitty character responsible for how stupid people explain indifference (myself included), Meh (as voiced by T.J. Miller), is having a bit of an identity crisis. And instead of thinking everything is, you know, meh, this f--ker has feelings that he feels the need to express.

Using...*throws hands up* emojis. Well, of course he does.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

There's no hiding from this, son.

You're reading a movie blog, so I know you know.

You're sitting there in the theater, waiting, eager. Yeah, this is fun, but it's not a game. You've arrived on time (missing the previews means missing the movie), set your phone on vibrate, dimmed the screen, Hell, maybe you've even taken your shoes off. You might even have your notepad out. Nerd. 

I mean, fellow nerd.

Anyway, you're sitting there, and you hear them coming. Could be loud kids, a family, an old couple - whatever, but you hear them coming and you think, what the f--k is wrong with people? Is this not a civilized world we live in? And you watch them loudly look for their seats and you cross your fingers so tightly, they just about snap off at the knuckle. The tension mounts.

Lord, just let me make it through this. This will be the last time I ask, I swear.
I just want to do what I came here to do...and get the Hell home. 

Take this tension, this momentary flutter of the (geeky) heart, and multiply it by say, infinity, and you have your average ten-second span of Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk. Sitting in the theater last Tuesday night, I'm not sure if I was breathing too fast or not at all, but as a cinematic experience, few have had the emotional impact of Nolan's latest.

However, like I imagine it to be for a soldier, the impact of what I have seen...keeps evolving and frankly, getting more intense as the days go by. So much so, I don't think I want to revisit it.


Many of the films I've seen this summer struggle with keeping one story straight (or consistently interesting), but with Dunkirk, howeverNolan deftly weaves together three. Each is a rather intimate tale of strength and survival, shockingly free of any of the hallmarks previous war films have hung their hat on. While the stories are indeed small, they eventually come together to create something that borders on spectacle. It's so smart, so technically stunning, you almost don't feel your heart being ripped out of your chest. Almost. 

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

That's okay. We all make mistakes.

I know it's possible, but how the f--k does one person make a better sandwich than somebody else?

I'm serious. If all the ingredients are the same, it should be impossible to have such a varied experience. Say you enjoy one person's B.L.T, then for f--k's sake they all should be good, right? You take the bacon, the goddamned lettuce, and a f--king tomato, slap that shit between some bread and it's hoo-ray, lunch is served. If you've got the slightest f--king clue about basic sandwich composition, you can't f--k it up.

But here's the thing. Bad bacon, is still f--king bacon, so if you like it, it's good times. You can't really f--k up lettuce or tomato, unless that shit is moldy or wilted, and then you're just an asshole for serving it. Ah, but what about the delivery system, right? What about the bread?

Turns out, you can totally f--k up the bread. 

The main problem with Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, and they're are a host of them, is definitely the f--king bread. While the rest of the film is serviceable (if not awkwardly chaotic) science-fiction, it's the dysfunctional duo of actors holding it all together that are squarely responsible for this film's epic failure. While some of you may dig these two, not a single f--k could I give.

And I wanted to!

Luc Besson has served up some pretty tasty movies in his career, and if memory serves me correctly, one helluva B.L.T science fiction flick (known around here as The One Where the Lady Has Rocks in Her Belly). But while that one had Bruce Willis and Mila Jovovich to leap through Besson's chaotic sci-fi world, in Valerian, we're stuck with two strung-out looking cool kids that are supposed to be top-tier government agents.

Right, like someone so unqualified and utterly miscast could ever rise to such a position of power in the government.

Oh, f--k me.

Monday, July 24, 2017

This ain't no treasure hunt you're on.

When the hotel my father worked at changed hands, apparently the new ownership had to technically rehire every single person that worked there. And whenever they (symbolically?) lined up the twelve hundred employees, according to him, my pops was rehired first. Yep, the man that I will inevitably look just like, was goddamned Employee number 1. 

While that story may be totally number two, his clout at that massive Hawaiian resort was impossibly legit. Years later, as a fellow employee (wonder how I got that gig?), and even as perpetually clueless as I was (/am), I could feel it. In fact, whenever I f--ked up, I didn't even have to mention who my dad was. Not only because I'm not that kind of asshole (clearly, I'm a different kind of asshole), but...

..because somebody else always would. Immediately.

Half the time, it totally sucked having people always kiss his ass when they spoke to me, as if I was going to run home and say, Gee, Dad! One of the bartenders said you're a swell guy! But the other half...well...occasionally... had its moments.

Speaking of a fleeting moment here and there, let's talk for a quick second about Winter Kills, a political thriller from the year I was born, 1997. I mean, 1979. One of those.

Watched so I could (perhaps intelligently) appear on the 93rd episode of Todd Liebenow's rad podcast Forgotten Films, director Willaim Richert's flick is, to put it lightly, a mixed bag...of absurd nonsense. 

When we first meet Nick Kegan (a very young, very handsome Jeff Bridges), he's on some sort of ship, in the middle of the ocean. A helicopter lands, and they hastily bring aboard a man wrapped in bandages head-to-toe. Apparently, before this dude dies, he's got some information for Nick.

See, nineteen years ago, Nick's half-brother was assassinated during his term as President of the United States. This bandaged guy, in between moans and gasps, claims he was one of the gunmen. In fact, if Nick heads to some building in Philadelphia, he'll find the murder weapon stashed in the floor. Oh, okay then. Guess he'll have to sit around a gigantic boat doing nothing some other time.

Friday, July 21, 2017

King Kong is dead.

When the end of humanity is finally upon us, I hope there is a moment before the impending carnage, where we all take a second or two to realize how, more often than not, conflict can generally be avoided. Things don't have to end in battles or wars, but instead can end in conversation, compromise and ultimately, peace. Share a Coke and a smile, for f--k's sake.

Yes friends, peace is entirely possible, if people weren't such stupid f--king bastards, Hell-bent on ruining shit for the rest of us. Sometimes, it's a collective that destroys everything, like a political party, or a nefarious corporation damning us all in the name of profits and shareholders. Other times it's simply an unhappy prick, gleefully sharing his or her own personal misery with the rest of us.

That said, when the world as we know it is coming to an end, I ask you, dear reader, to tip your cap to the dickhead who started it all. You know, that blonde-headed twat, who had to ruin everything. Again. The one with the name you'll never, ever forget. The one, the only...

...Draco f--king Malfoy.

While Tom Felton has made a career out of being a no-good dipshit, the Battle for Hogwarts can't hold a magically floating candle to the War for the Planet of the Apes. Malfoy helped destroy Hogwarts, sure, but Felton's Dodge Landon (the douchey zoo-keeper from 2011's Rise of the Planet of the Apes [review!]) helped destroy the f--king planet. And unfortunately, he wasn't the only one.

Continuing the trend of awful human beings doing terrible shit, Matt Reeves latest Apes film opens with a tactical force infiltrating an Ape stronghold. Caesar, further evolved and as badass as ever (Serkis for Best Everything), manages a victory and even catches a few prisoners of war. Instead of killing them like, say, a wild animal, he instead releases them to return to wherever it is they came from, in an effort to stop all the senseless violence on both sides.

This gesture is appreciated, and the humans bid the Apes good day. 

And by that, clearly I mean they don't give a f--k, double back in the middle of the night and slaughter Caesar's sleeping family.

Wait, they did what? F--king people are the worst!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Obviously, I got second pick.

This is my six hundred and fifty second post.

For over half a decade, I have reviewed every single film I've have seen. Sometimes, I can start writing about a movie without the slightest bit of hesitation (it helps when my definition of 'writing' is mostly coherent horseshit, with commas!). But occasionally, I get stuck. Very stuck.

It gets so bad that I don't even open my laptop to do non blog-related things, simply because I'm consumed by this invisible demon breathing down my neck. I thought hobbies were supposed to be fun.

They are, but how can you create something when you've got absolutely nothing to say? 

Oh, right.

Just add Minions.

In full-disclosure, I think I wanted to, but yes, I hated Despicable Me 3. Had I not been flanked by in-laws (yeah, you read that right -one on each side), I'm quite positive I would have fallen into a deep, deep slumber. 

And if I had, and been rudely awoken to find out that I had not only been loudly snoring, but for the first time in my life, had actually shit my pants publicly, I still think I would have left the theater in a better mood than I did. At least in this imagined scenario, my shit was fresh. Because what was on screen, was anything but.

Four-ish movies in, and we're already at the desperate point where Gru has recently discovered that he has a long-lost twin brother. And if that's not dick-crushingly bad enough, his twin brother's name is Dru, and he's a stupid asshole.

While Gru and Dru are essentially having an epic tickle fight no cares about, Gru's (once?) adorable little daughter Agnes is chasing a mythological unicorn in the forest. Yep. Enjoy that. 

In fact, things are so bad even the Minions have bailed! These little ubiquitous yellow bastards have somehow ended up in prison, where if there truly was a Movie God, they'd collectively drop the soap, and wake up the next day feeling like everyone (over the age of 9) who put money on the counter for Despicable Me 3. 

So, what you're saying, Blogger Guy, is that there's no way in Hell I should ever, ever, see this abomination, right? Like, even at gunpoint, take the bullet, right?


Friday, July 14, 2017

Ugh. My toothbrush stinks.

The shower? That's obvious. The bedroom, too.

Not sure if I'd put one in the pool, but I guess that makes sense. I'm just not sure if my love for bikinis trumps my general aversion to  extra shriveled wieners.

But the kitchen? Lame. The entryway? Who gives a damn? But where I'd never put a hidden camera?

The toilet.

I mean, that's just...shitty.

If you walked into someone's house and this poster framed...
After viewing the fairly awesome horror flick Sweet Home [review] the night before, I returned to the golden well of short-ass cinema by catching the extremely rad 13 Cameras. Written and directed by Victor Zarcoff, this creepy little flick was a helluva good time. Especially considering that moments before I pressed play, my wife and I were scouring the web...looking at new houses.

Claire and Ryan are a young couple with a child on the way. It appears as if Ryan's job has hastily taken them to the West Coast, and they need to find a home to rent quickly. Ryan will be working all hours as a big cog high up in some tech company, while (the exceedingly lovely) Claire will be home looking fine and getting ready for baby. Aww?

Not really.

See, the guy they've rented their nice-ass house from is a weird f--ker to say the least, and when we meet this creep he's grunting and stinking his way through the tour of the place. Momma Bear's instincts immediately think f--k this, but Ryan does that thing us guys so often do and says, Don't worry about it. Where a reasonable person would really consider what's going on, Ryan would rather end the home hunt as quickly as possible. I hear ya, Ry, I do.

But this f--king guy is sketchy as f--k. 

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Thanks for not pretending.

As a married man, with two cockblocking lovable children and a seriously amazing wife, I'm always looking to get away. Not from all of them, silly goose, just the two little ones.

Whether it's my birthday, her birthday, Valentine's Day, our anniversary, f--king Arbor Day, Tuesday, whatever it may be, the possibility of a romantic escape consistently resides at the top of my mind near famous breasts and 90s movie quotes. 

I've planned good and bad ones, but like any true champion of sport, you gotta put it all behind you and prepare for the next one. The only problem? I'm the only one who does any of the legwork.

She doesn't plan shit.

And after seeing the 2015's Sweet Home, I'm more than alright with being in charge of a night away. At least when I'm calling the shots, the only thing getting murdered in the night is our hopes and dreams of staying up past eleven.  

Thankfully, Rafa Martinez' little horror flick isn't about a pathetic married couple, but instead young lovers, likely in their twenties.

Sexy blonde Alicia (Ingrid Garcia Jonsson) is a real estate broker in Spain, and when the film opens she's visiting the last remaining tenant of a beautiful old building. Apparently, somebody wants this building vacant, but a stubborn old man on the top floor won't budge. This will matter in a few short hours.

In the meantime, Alicia plans a romantic birthday celebration for her boyfriend Simon, a recent med-school dropout (this too, will matter later). But being that they're broke, or least Simon is, Alicia plans the candlelit tryst in, of all places, a vacant room in the aforementioned building. Good thing murderous thugs weren't planning on breaking into the building that very same evening, cutting the power, and killing that old bastard upstairs. I mean, 'cause that would really be a bummer, you know? (unless they've already had sex, I mean, at that point, the night's pretty much over anyway...might as well head home).

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

I'm all in on this.

The New Guy is always the Best Guy. Unless he isn't. Sometimes the Best Guy is the actually the Original Guy, even if he wasn't that good. But he was. At least he was back then.

See, that's the thing: no matter what, you can't mess with the Original, because he did it first. New Guy? Shoot. You're only the New Guy till the Next Guy. And sometimes, well, the Next Guy is the Best Guy.

Until he's not New anymore.

Then he just becomes That Guy.

I'm just curious if we'll ever get to the Last Guy.

My son has been waiting for this movie for months.
Me? It was pumped, too. But now it's time for the Apes.
Spider-Man: Homecoming is a really good time at the movies. It's fast-paced, fun and totally entertaining. I had a good time watching it with my kid. But let's be honest with ourselves, we've been down this road before. We've seen this story. A lot. We know these characters. Well. So when it comes to the excitement surrounding this flick, as a very wise man once said, Well, let's not start sucking each other's dicks quite yet.

This latest attempt, from director Jon Watts, likely whips out the last possible (not-stupid) innovation for the story of Peter Parker, and rubs it deliciously in the face of everyone who loves the MCU. Here, Peter's young. Like, young-young. And it's the absolute perfect way to play it.

With Tom Holland absolutely kicking ass as both the kid and the hero, Spidey has gone from whatever the Hell he was with Tobey and Garfield, to a young dude that we simply like. Holland's Parker (and his Spidey, frankly) is so stoked to be potentially an Avenger, he's literally bouncing all over the damn place. And I know it's cliche as Hell, but his enthusiastic is damn near contagious. He doesn't have to ride his skateboard like a giant douche, or dance down the street like an asshole to impress us. Instead, he just tries to do the right thing again and again, even if he keeps screwing up.

And this time, it's not really us (or a girl) he's trying to impress.

It's Tony Stark.

Friday, July 7, 2017

For my world to live...yours must die.

If I had a towel, I'd throw it in. Or, if it was white, I'd affix it to a broom handle, and wave that friggin' thing with everything I've got.

At this point, my hands are up, and I'm going to lay on the floor, slowly, with my head down and unequivocally surrender. I'll even lay my wallet out next to me, but, you know, you already got my money.

But before you finish me off, please, please! 

Let my boy go.

After the relative goodwill leftover from seeing Age of Extinction [review] a few days ago, my son and I headed to Transformers: The Last Knight. We were all caught up with Cade Yeager and the Dinobots, so despite the overwhelmingly negative reviews, we were ready. And dare I say...excited?

Welp, so much for that. Maybe had I waited three years for the dust to settle (like we did with Extinction) things would have gone differently, but I will officially go on the record by saying this is a joyless, lifeless, brainless, steaming robotic turd of a movie. It transformed me from a functional person to a bag of human waste. And worse? It couldn't even destroy me quickly, you know? 

It took almost two and half hours to do it.

But that's the 1.0 version that was destroyed. m.brown 2.0 (aka my son, Matthew) loved it.

That (sadly) said, I'm (sadly) gonna give the plot a shot. If it kills me, well, I've had a good run. And - added bonus - I'll be dead for the sixth one.

People still hate the Transformers. Yep. And not because Michael Bay has dedicated just under twelve cinematic hours to their portrayal, but because they keep trying to save Earth. I mean, at this point, clearly we don't deserve oxygen. Anyway, as far as I can figure, no one gives a good God damn about the space robots, outside of a pretty orphaned girl named Izabella and Cade Yeager, Mark Wahlberg's character from the first one. Where Cade was once just a regular dude trying to save his farm, when we meet him, he's basically Dog the Autobot Hunter - minus the super rad/lame shades and Costco-sized jug of pepper spray. But instead of cuffing them and giving them a cigarette, Cade's rescuing the wayward bots and bringing them back to his junkyard. Uh, okay.

I guess that makes sense.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

You call, I'm there.

Before we were married, there were these dark days where my wife and I lived with her parents. We had our own rooms, which sucked (but was clearly the right thing to do), so any uh, alone time, was relegated to an instance where the house was guaranteed to be empty for hours. And with neither of her parents having anything resembling a regular schedule, that was just a shade below absolutely f--king never. We lived in Pennsylvania, sure, but we were miles away from Intercourse.

So our solution to this problem (honestly, I think I was the only one this bothered), was to get in the car and go somewhere. I don't know if we had an elaborate story (likely the movies), but we would basically drive to an empty development...and talk about our feelings. 

And while those steamy (literally) conversations will always be my favorite thing to do while someone else is in the car, my favorite thing to do alone?

I f--king love to sing. Like top of my lungs, bring-on-the-drum-solo, use-the-rearview-mirror-as-a-mic, answer-the-phone-breathless, doesn't-matter-the-genre sing my f--king ass off.

And if I can't sing? Then I won't drive.

Fine. Unless I have to.

While music makes me a much worse motorist (I'm almost positive of this), quite the opposite is true of the protagonist in Edgar Wright's latest, Baby Driver. Pegged as my favorite movie of the summer before I had seen it, Wright's love letter to music and cars is an absolute f--king blast, start-to-finish. Oh, you've seen this movie before, probably a bunch of times, but I don't think it ever looked and sounded so damn cool.

Baby (Ansel Elgort, forever my hero) is a getaway a driver for a bank-robbery outfit headed by the decidedly bullshit-free, Doc (Kevin Spacey, cranked to 11). Baby, as these stories go, has only a few more jobs left before he's even-steven and can move on from a life of crime. Clearly, he's a good dude, but even if he's only the wheelman, he can't seem to keep the blood off his hands.

Initially, his only real reason to get out is to please his deaf foster-dad Joseph, but after meeting a lovely waitress named Debora (the delightfully smitten Lily James), Baby's got much bigger ideas. The plan, if you can call it that, is to get in the car with his soon-to-be ladyfriend and get the Hell out of Dodge, er, Atlanta. If sounds so simple, right?

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

I'm asking you to look at all the junk and see the treasure.

Outside of a giant f--king clue, I didn't know what to get you. So instead, I decided to write this post as my gift to you on your special day. Now, now...don't be upset. I know you don't like to read, okay? I'll keep it quick. Promise.

Besides, these words? They're all about your favorite things.

Fast cars. 
Young girls in tight clothes. 
Robot dinosaurs. 
Mark f--king Wahlberg!

So cheer up, dammit. America, let's make this the best 241st birthday ever!

After running across the trailer for this summer's entry in what could be considered the most inexplicable film franchise in the history of cinema, I promised my son we'd take a look at 2014's Transformers: Age of Extinction. He's an incredibly easy-going, almost eight year-old boy, and therefore the owner of the most ideal set of eyes to watch the fourth talking robot movie. And while I shouldn't have liked this movie in the least, with that dude next to me? I simply couldn't help myself.

Kinda-sorta, the premise is cool. See, after the events of the third flick [review], it seems ol' Earth ain't taking too kindly to the giant talking space robots no more. In fact, those dang ol' machines is being hunted down and sold to the government for research and the like. Someone smarter might say this an allegory for the full-on death of knowledge and understanding in contemporary society. Me? I reckon we gotta keep 'Merica safe. Ain't no one got time for talking when there's explosions to be had.

Cue Mark Wahlberg as Cade Yeager, your typical single-dad farmer-type, who, when he's not drinking domestic beers in the back of his Chevy, or adjusting one of the many American flags hanging around his property, is out back inventing robots. Yessir, I did in fact say inventing robots. And that ain't a euphemism for beatin' the meat, ya hear? I mean that in a very literal sense.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Love is cold.

Let be clear when I tell you...I'm no f--king hero.

I've never rushed into a burning building. Never lifted a car off a pinned kid. Shit, I'm not even that guy that stoically goes to work everyday and puts in an honest eight (I bitch half the time I'm there and call out like a motherf--ker. A sick motherf--ker).

But when I hear a film is an epic disaster? When I read that the ninety-minute runtime will crush your f--king soul? When I feel it's going to be absolutely back-breaking to finish some utter piece of dogshit? Hell, when I know all that?

I'm your Huckleberry. 

See, only a sick motherf--ker, in the face of all the unseen quality films of the world, would willingly rent something called The Dark Below from Redbox. But being the absolute f--king hero that I am, when I saw this...

'NOTE TO RENTERS: There is no dialogue in this film'

...I threw myself on that grenade. Dick first.

While they had me at no words, the premise is even more deliciously terrible, assuming that's not only possible, but those are words that should be adjacent to one another.

So, the plot? Uh, Woman is drugged by Man. Man places her in a wet suit, weighs her down, and sinks her ass about seven feet below the frozen surface of a lake. No, really. You read those words correctly. You're not f--king mental.

Woman will come to, try to crawl out of a giant ice hole, and inadvertently alert man that she's no longer sort-of drowning. Man will show up angrily and Woman will slip back under the ice. Rinse and repeat (always repeat), and feel free to go f--k yourself for renting this film.