The Violent Blue blog***Comics, Horror and Pop Culture***Updates Tuesday through Friday (and occasionally at random)

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essentialPosting the best strips from the series, in order from the beginning.

Every Wednesday and Friday

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674

essentialPosting the best strips from the series, in order from the beginning.

Every Wednesday and Friday

Man-At-Arms (part one)

Costume

I love these- there’s almost a narrative you can follow. It starts with War on Eternia.

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Just as it looks like our heros are overwhelmed, an ally arrives and Man-At-Arms sets off in search of allies

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The search begins in part two!

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Muppets from Space

directorstmuppets-from-space-1999-medium-coverThe Muppet Movie is absolutely my favorite of all the Muppet films. It’s the perfect dead-on take on Henson’s creations. But it might surprise you to know that Muppets From Space is a fast second place – none of the others even come close.

In the era after Henson’s death until the time Disney finally bought the property, the Muppers kind of meandered, not sure how to proceed. We had a couple half hearted sequals – adaptions of Treasure Island and a Christmas Carol, as well as the ill-fated Muppts Tonight show that ABC never gave a chance (yanking it after only four episodes).

I like Muppets from space because it features the Muppets just being themselves- it’s thier downtime, thier personal adventures – soemthing I always found more interesting than the skits themselves. I find the story of Gonzo discovering that he is infact an alien to be a brilliant revelation, and the journey to find his alien tribe to be hilarious.

It’s also here where we see Tim Hill’s skill in making the inanimate characters lifelike. He understands how to shoot them so you believe it…and he gets the heart of the characters.

Don’t just stream this on Netflix by the way, find this on DVD if you can. It features Hill, along with Gonzo and Rizzo commenting on the film MST3K style and is one of the best riffs ever.

673

essentialPosting the best strips from the series, in order from the beginning.

Every Wednesday and Friday

Night of the Demons 2

franchisebannernight-of-the-demons-2-posterYou know, when as hard as they were pushing for night of the Demons to become a franchise, I would’ve expected them to have rushed  production… 12 to 16 months was when I figured we’d see the second installment – sometime in 1990. But no, it ended up being six years and we didn’t see a new one of his films until 1994. Because of all this time that has passed Angela looks a little bit different when she is in her human guise, but the make up for her monster form  still looks very recognizable.

It may also be because of this longer gap that night of the Demons to feels more like a late series sequel rather than an immediate follow-up. We do something fairly bold here, and instead of giving us another haunted house flick they transplant the action – and it turns more into a possession/slasher flick.

This time when the group of teens partying at Hull House arrive (A little more than a half hour into the film), they have the good sense to get out quick (literally eighteen minuets later) but not before Angela imageshitches a ride in the popular girl’s purse. The main demonic assault in this film takes place in the catholic school – a good backdrop that should cause more dread and eeriness then it actually does. Still, there’s plenty of decent make up, respectable gore (man….that battle right before the end….) and callbacks to the original as they chase the demons back to the haunted house they came from. It’s an adequate sequel, but I feel like I didn’t get what I wanted from it. I really wanted another movie where we have Angela stalking hapless teenagers through the filth encrusted walls of the haunted house.

It’s a perfectly serviceable movie, and I don’t hate it. I actually like the good over evil themes and the fact that the religious folks, while over the top, aren’t really played for fools or hypocrites. Still, the attempt to shoehorn a backstory and relationship here feels clunky, like a misstep – much like the second installment of the nightmare on elm street series. Of course everybody knows the Freddy movies came back better than ever with the third sequel. I don’t remember anything about the third movie in this franchise to say whether or not that holds true here. Guess we’ll have to go and find out!

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672

essentialPosting the best strips from the series, in order from the beginning.

Every Wednesday and Friday

The Nameless

boxmmv5bmddkmwixzwqtnwewnc00ymriltlmztctnjk5nzk0zta3ntfixkeyxkfqcgdeqxvymta0mju0ng-_v1_ux182_cr00182268_al_The nameless is a study in not enough. It’s a  slow moving story and every element in it (many of which I like) are as underused as that the name is.

It is the story of a woman whose daughter is lost . The first have hour evolves just like any average episode of Law and order or CSI. Police discover the body, theres an investigation, Case closed.

Everything changes when the mother receives a phone call from what sounds like the deceased daughter and she begins to suspect that the body found was not the right one. The story progresses further with the revelation of a  further investigation from both the detective on the case and the reporter from the local tabloid rag. The story really doesn’t pick up though until we’re about halfway through the film – right around the 45 minute mark. It’s a struggle to get here.  Once we start getting into the idea of the cold and investigating the only non-member, things do you start to pick up – there’s an interesting narrative here, it’s just woefully under used. The idea of a cult is inserted at the last minuet… I’m sure it was fleshed out in the writers mind, and we’re told about it, but we see so very little of it – it falls woefully short of the excitement and interest that we get from say, the old 70s Hammer horror where the Satanic cults are in full diabolical display. It seems to me that they’re trying to go for more of the suspenseful atmosphere perhaps, but they don’t quite achieve it – the story just drags, and I feel as if I am watching any procedural cop show on television, just with a teensy bit more blood… Maybe not even that.

Towards the end we get a brief glimpse of one of the characters tortured. It’s the sort of thing that we appeal to the saw crowd, but again it’s just the clips… Not enough of it to be engaging in a torture porn  sort of format. The ending feels like it’s reaching – like it wants to be innovative, esoteric, but it really fails to deliver that I want away from this movie rather disappointing, not because of the bad film, but because I can see t he potential in it for a much better one. This isn’t even as good as the ones on late night TV – it’s perfectly at home in a bundle box set like this, but otherwise nothing to see here, move on…

670

essentialPosting the best strips from the series, in order from the beginning.

Every Wednesday and Friday

Friday the 13th

remakesfriday_the_13th_2009_movie_poster003There so much that’s right about the Friday the 13th remake that almost seems a shame to have to reboot it.  But the really big thing that bugs me about this one is the massive amounts of sex and nudity. I realize these are staples of the franchise, and probably concept behind reboot is to take things up a notch. Really you can take the balance up a notch here but explicit drug use kind of bothers me A bit and the sex and nudity really crosses the line into Softcore porn. Actually they don’t even bother with the borderline they want straight over the border and camp into that territory. Really the only way that I’m comfortable watching this again is on an edited for TV versio.

One thing that really seemed to bother fans here was the way Jason moved. Dereck Meres is a fine stuntman and a good actor in its own right but here I imagine that he was just following direction. This is of course, a new Jason, platinum dunes version, but it’s a distinction I don’t think the casual fans notice. It’s just one of the things that will serve to piss off the faithful.

How do we fix this> First and foremost, bring back Kane Hodder – this is something the fans have been clammering for since Freddy Vs. Jason.  I think the origin bit with the mother straight beginning was well done Jason much like superman and Batman doesn’t need his word story retold again and again,  but tone down the sex to a point where I would be comfortable watching with this son or daughter and to push Jason  more towards body language that the fans (that you’re making this film for by the way) would appreciate more would go along way towards building up goodwill here.

Sadly I think we’re headed in the other direction as the studio seems adamant on releasing a found footage JasonNevertheless we still have the originals and I think I’ll go Pop in Jason x right now .