The Rage in Placid Lake

 Posted by at 10:59 pm  Comments Off on The Rage in Placid Lake
Feb 272010
 

The Rage in Placid Lake, unfortunately, is not a showdown between Muhammad Ali and a giant alligator (which would be awesome). Rather, Placid Lake is the name of a human being who is the protagonist of this movie. As if naming this dude “Placid Lake” weren’t bad enough, his mother sends him to his first day of school in a dress, in order to “challenge the preconceived notions of sexuality.” As a result of this crazy woman’s need to break gender boundaries, Placid gets beat up every day until he graduates high school. He tries to avoid the daily beat-downs, but it’s no use; his parents set him up for failure. So he figures, if I can’t beat ’em, I’ll join ’em. He gets a haircut, buys a suit, gets a corporate job, and totally sticks it to his parents, but at the same time he may end up ruining the only healthy relationship he has.

Considering the movie is called “The Rage in Placid Lake,” I would have expected more rage. I think a better name for this movie would have been “The Indignation in Placid Lake.” Placid is clearly bothered by his parents and his life, but there’s never much rage. There is one scene where he screams in front of a mirror, and another where he yells at his parents, but who hasn’t done that? I’ve yelled at my parents plenty – where’s my movie? Regardless, it’s still enjoyable. Ben Lee (who apparently is some sort of musician) gives a solid and funny performance as Placid, and Rose Byrne is super cute and terrific as the quasi-love interest, Gemma. Also, Claire Danes makes a baffling cameo. Plus, the movie is shot in Australia, and it’s fun pointing out the quirky little things they’ve got down under (like doorknobs mounted at shoulder height).

All in all, The Rage in Placid Lake is watchable, though nothing totally noteworthy. As far as coming-of-age comedies go, it’s alright. Ten years ago I might have found some sort of profound meaning to this story, but now that I’m married and boring, it was just a nice movie to watch with the wife on a weeknight. If you’re hard pressed to find a movie, this one should do.

I give The Rage in Placid Lake: 3 out of 5 wallabies

Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever

 Posted by at 5:36 am  Comments Off on Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever
Feb 252010
 

Note: If you’re all hung up on politics and brazenly vilify this movie as you raise your sword in defense of Ti West, who wanted his name removed from the film after his artistic vision was hijacked by the producers, do yourself a solid and just stop reading this now because, beyond this opening paragraph, I’m not going to address it again. Yes, it fucking sucks for Mr. West and I have nothing but sympathy for him, but I’m reviewing a horror movie here, not trying to harangue you with my uneducated opinion about the sheisty nature of the film industry and its insatiable appetite for the souls of talented young filmmakers. (That’s what IMDB message boards are for, apparently.) So let’s just all agree that life is unfair, bad things happen to good people, and that Hollywood is a hideous bitch-goddess. Sweet? Sweet. Now lets  get to the movie as it is presented, regardless of the myriad of shitty circumstances leading to its release.

How much do I love the original Cabin Fever? So much that I named my dog “Pancakes”. That’s commitment, motherfucker. That’s like watching Swingers and then deciding to name your dog “Money Baby”. Except it’s not like that at all because that would be retarded and what I did was awesome because as it turns out, I am in fact pretty fucking awesome and I should be rewarded with trophies molded in my visage (but also on the inside they’re chocolate). Anyway, given my obvious personal investment, you can imagine the teste-contracting terror that gripped my soul (and apparently ballsack) when I walked by the Redbox outside 7-Eleven and saw the DVD cover for Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever.

“WHAT THE FUCK”, I exclaimed (no I didn’t) as I smashed my fist through the Redbox touch-screen (again, not really). Why would they make this sequel 8 years after the release of the original?  Who the fuck is this Ti West guy? That sounds like the name of a porno director. What happened to Eli Roth? Is he okay? How could he let this happen to me and my dog? Whose 12-year-old nephew got Photoshop Elements free with the laptop he got for Christmas and made this cover art?

Those are all valid questions (and one valid statement) and my outrage was pure and true. So, of course, I rented it – because being angry at movies is my number three favorite hobby after being mad at TV commercials (#2) and being mad at weather (#1).

With almost every conceivable thing about it suggesting the contrary, this movie is actually pretty awesome. It unabashedly delivers the “3 B’s” – Blood, Boobs, and Barf – and does it with a sense of humor about itself that never comes off as blatantly “wacky”.

Not even the fact that the starring role went to the weak-voiced would-be-rapist turned accidental-necrophiliac kid from Deadgirl bothered me.  Even more surprisingly, his archetypal “portly/sex-crazed/wise-cracking sidekick” is somehow believable, natural, and actually funny at times. In fact, almost everyone in this movie goes well beyond typical “direct-to-DVD horror/comedy” standards. (Except the cartoonishly witch-like teacher who chews up the scenery like she has cancer and it’s the cure.) There’s even an amazing cameo by Judah Friedlander and, if you ask me, a fucking Oscar-worthy appearance by Mark Borchardt of American Movie fame.

The one glaring fault of this movie is its last 5 minutes. (Yes, I know it was shot and added by the producers after Ti West washed his hands of the film, but we’re not talking about that, remember?) After a satisfactory ending complete with crane shot and fade-out, the movie suddenly and apropos of NOTHING cuts to what I guess is supposed to be a strip club, where we  meet six new characters as they all clunkily interact with a girl that we haven’t seen since the first half hour of the movie. We get some pointless gross-outs, some even more pointless dialogue, the girl half-heartedly delivers some bullshit joke, and we’re treated to a bizarre cartoon sequence where we see the virus taking over the world.  It’s absolutely ridiculous and almost insulting. It came very close to actually ruining the whole movie for me, but I figured if I could forgive High Tension for its last 10 minutes, I could forgive this – a far lesser movie. I’m tough but fair, folks.

What’s that? You’re wondering what’s up with that sweet picture of the chunky chick up there? Oh, well she has a full-on nude scene and then fucks a villain from an 80s movie in a pool. Then her tooth falls out and she dies. It’s pretty awesome.

As long as you’ve seen the original, I’d say Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever is worth a watch. (It kind of assumes you’ve seen the first one in that it never really explains why everyone’s barfing everywhere and dying.) It’s not a great movie, but with some great use of the 3 B’s, it’s not as bad as you think it’s going to be.

I give this movie 1 dead fat girl in a pool (out of a possible 2 dead fat girls in a pool).

Humble Pie

 Posted by at 12:01 am  Comments Off on Humble Pie
Feb 222010
 

Humble Pie tells the story of Tracy Orbison, a lonely dude who’s just trying to make something of himself. He’s got a lot going against him though: he’s morbidly obese, still lives with his ball-busting mother, works a go-nowhere job at a second-rate grocery store, and doesn’t even have his drivers license. Despite all of this, Tracy dreams of one day becoming an actor, but his pursuit for fame and recognition only seems to cause more trouble for himself.

It all starts at a local play, where Tracy is mesmerized by the acting chops of Truman Hope (played by Billy Baldwin). Tracy starts taking an acting class and begins to gain some self confidence. He starts mentoring some mislead youth, and forms a bond with his new teacher and idol, Truman Hope. But he soon discovers that teenagers should never be trusted, actors are fucking assholes and, if you’re a sweet fat dude, people will walk all over you. What unfolds next is a series of bad decisions and worse consequences, all of which force Tracy to confront the dilemmas of being born into mediocrity.

Humble Pie is a lot like Eagle vs Shark or Napoleon Dynamite. It’s a story about a social misfit; an antihero. It’s even shot in a similar aesthetic: lots of washed out earthtones, unknown actors, and retro styles. But where Napoleon and Jarrod (of Eagle vs Shark) were annoying and over-exaggerated, Tracy is believable and totally likable. Thanks to some pretty brilliant acting by Hubbel Palmer, I was completely invested in Tracy. Also, it’s refreshing to see a fat guy get a lead role for once. I think the last time that happened was when Chris Farley was cast in Almost Heroes.

As for the rest of the acting, it’s all pretty terrific. Casting Billy Baldwin to play the cheesy, over-the-top actor was pure genius, and with Mary Lynn Rajskub playing Tracy’s sister, Peggy, it’s almost impossible not to like this movie. When all is said and done, Humble pie is a great movie with high replay value (I’ve watched it twice in three days). It’s no work of art, and it’s not going to leave you with a deeper understanding of your own existence, but it will most definitely entertain, and isn’t that what movies are supposed to do?

Admit it, you’ve seen Napoleon Dynamite (probably more than once) so there’s no reason for you not to see Humble Pie. It’s just sitting inside your computer, waiting for you.

I give Humble Pie: A passing grade.

Bubble

 Posted by at 6:35 pm  Comments Off on Bubble
Feb 202010
 

When I was 16, I found the polaroid to the right in the desert. (Don’t ask me why I still have it because I have no idea. Look for me next season on A&E’s “Hoarders”.) When I look at it now, I can’t help but get the same feeling I did 12 years ago when I found it – An overwhelming creepy sense that something terrible happened to this jolly little man. Of course there’s no evidence to support this whatsoever. It’s just a picture of a mustachioed gentleman named Leland who’s stoked to be at an expo. It probably blew off his car’s dashboard and out the window and for a second, he was like “Aw man! My sweet-ass expo picture!” and then he never thought about it again. So why, even 12 years later, can I not get it out of my mind that this is someones “last known photo”?  Because there’s just something hyper-real, intensely candid, and inherently depressing about polaroids, and finding a discarded one just makes your skin crawl. This uncomfortable feeling – the feeling that I’m seeing something I’m not supposed to see, regardless of its banality – is the feeling I had for the duration of Steven Soderbergh’s “Bubble”.

If you wanna get all fuckin’ artsy about it, you could say that Bubble is filmed exquisitely in the style of Italian neorealism. However, if your mouth isn’t currently full of Roberto Rossellini’s cock, you would just say that this movie was filmed on location in some super-depressing little podunk town using “real people” as opposed to professional actors. The effect is such that I had to keep reminding myself for the first half hour that this wasn’t a documentary. These “non-actor” actors are so convincing, so goddamned real, that I’m still – three days after watching this movie – trying to figure out if I liked it or not.

Let me put it this way: When you see a painting of a bowl of fruit that is almost photo-realistic, your first reaction is “Holy shit. That’s incredible”. You can’t help but admire the amazing talent and time and effort that went into creating it. But at the same time, it’s just a fucking bowl of fruit. I’ve seen a million bowls of fruit, none of them particularly interesting. Does the fact that an artist was able to perfectly recreate something so boring and ordinary somehow make it less boring and ordinary? I have no idea and that’s why I’m still on the fence about this movie.

The story is simple. Martha, an affable dumpy lady in her 40s, and Jake, a quiet awkward dude in his 20s, work together at a doll factory. Their friendship is about what you’d expect given the circumstances until one day, this skeezy broad named Rose gets hired and gums up the works with her shitty attitude and attraction to Jake. The morning after an awkward date, Rose turns up dead. From there on out, the movie is a quiet, subdued whodunnit.

So we’re back to the original question: Is this a good movie? I honestly don’t know. I will say this, though – Whatever it was that Steven Soderbergh set out to do with this film, it appears he did it perfectly. Whether you see it as an intriguing and ominous discarded polaroid or a boring-ass bowl of fruit is entirely up to you.

I’m gonna stop thinking about this and go watch Tokyo Gore Police again.

Tokyo Gore Police

 Posted by at 6:40 pm  1 Response »
Feb 182010
 

Question: Is Tokyo Gore Police the most awesome movie ever made?

Answer: Yes.

And that shit isn’t even an opinion. That’s a fucking fact, Jack.

I’m not even going to bother giving you a review or a plot synopsis or whatever. There’s no point. All you need to know is that it just doesn’t get any more awesome than this movie and the fact that you’re not watching it right now makes you an idiot. So go watch it. Now.

Really? You’re still just reading this? Are you being difficult on purpose or are you just a douche that hates things that are awesome?

Listen up, horse. I’ve led you to this water and so help me god, you are going to fucking drink. Allow me to explain something to you – The title screen for Tokyo Gore Police occurs 8 minutes and 48 seconds into the film. Here is a rundown of what happens in that beautiful 8 minutes and 48 seconds BEFORE THE NAME OF THE MOVIE EVEN APPEARS:

0:00 – 0:39
Filmed in association with blah blah blah.

0:40
The movie begins and we see some pretty flowers.

1:33
A dude’s head explodes.

2:45
A dude eats another dude’s organs with chopsticks.

3:42
A dude does Leatherface’s “Chainsaw Shuffle”.

3:52
A chick slices her arm with a box cutter like 47 times.

4:41 – 5:01
A dude is shot until his arm falls off and then…

5:29
…a crazy-ass bio-mech chainsaw grows out of the bloody stump.

5:36
A cop’s head gets chopped off.

6:11
A chick flies to the top of a building on a bazooka.

6:40
A dude gets a chainsaw tossed into his mouth which chops his face in half.

7:25
Arm chopped off.

7:45
Ear chopped off.

7:57
Nose chopped off.

8:04
Eyeball falls out.

8:37
Chick chops dude in half vertically with a sword.

8:48
Title screen.

Yeah. And the remaining 1 hour and 40 minutes makes those first 9 minutes look like fucking “Milo and Otis”. I give this movie two severed thumbs up and the soul of my first born child (whom I will name “Tokyo Gore Police”).

The Cell 2

 Posted by at 4:19 am  Comments Off on The Cell 2
Feb 182010
 

Jesus Christ, The Cell 2 is a bad movie. And I don’t mean “bad” like “John Waters bad”, or bad like “Tommy Wiseau’s The Room bad”, I mean good ol’ fashion BAD. The kind of bad that makes me want to break in to fits about once a minute because I know that somebody got paid for this piece of shit. It’s bad enough that movies like this are a common occurrence, but the fact that it is actually called “The Cell 2” chaps my fucking hide. Really? As in the sequel to that one movie with Jennifer Lopez that was surprisingly awesome? Don’t be fooled, friends. This movie has NOTHING to do with the original.

At the beginning of this colossal flop, they use an arbitrary clip from the original movie. This is the only thing the two movies have in common. Everything that follows is just a manic flurry of bad acting and terrible special effects. Here’s how it all plays out. Maya is a psychic detective, hot on the trail of a serial killer. Once upon a time she was kidnapped by this serial killer, but unfortunately she escaped. Ever since then she’s had an unexplainable psychic connection to this dude. I say unexplainable because they never fucking explain this phenomenon. Hey, remember how in the original movie Jennifer Lopez infiltrates the subconscious of Vincent D’Onofrio, and you get to see all kinds of cool shit? Like a horse being cleanly sliced into several segments, awesome costumes and lots of brilliant colors? In this movie Maya just gets to see what the killer sees. There are no chopped up animals. No super cool costume designs. Just some dude strapping girls to chairs over and over again. At one point early on there are boobs, but then there are no more boobs for the remainder of the movie. There’s a twist at the end (the killer was the deputy all along!) and Maya ends up killing the bad guy. Huzzah!

Incredibly, this movie was directed by Tim Iacofano, who has been nominated for not one, but two Emmys. What!?! During the hour and a half I sat through The Cell 2, I could have sworn that each and every actor was being directed NOT to act. There’s a scene in which a dude performs CPR on a women’s stomach. ON HER STOMACH. During another scene Maya and her meathead partner lay low in an apartment:
Maya: “What is this place?”
Meathead: “We call it a safehouse.”
Fuck yea! Give Tim Iacofano the fucking Emmy already!

If you’ve got the friends and the time, I guess you could watch The Cell 2. Don’t worry about being stumped for jokes, though. This movie provides them in spades.

I give The Cell 2: Two Emmy nominations.

I Got Rik’s Back!
Dude, it’s like they made “Ghost Dad” but called it “Ghostbusters III”.

-Trent

Monster Camp

 Posted by at 2:37 am  Comments Off on Monster Camp
Feb 182010
 

If you’ve never heard of LARP before, then congratulations – you’re obviously doing pretty well for yourself. But while you were busy furthering your career and getting to touch boobs, you missed out on something pretty unbelievable.

LARP stands for Live Action Role Playing and it’s a much bigger phenomenon than you’d expect or hope. Essentially, it’s a game of Dungeons and Dragons where, rather than rolling some dice and talking about it, you and your buddies dress up like your characters and go on adventures in the woods finding treasure and battling foes.

What? You’re not familiar with D&D? Okay, then it’s like acting out a campaign from World of Warcraft in character. Really? You still don’t get it? Okay, remember when you were little and you and your buddies would play swords and you’d be like “I got you! You’re dead!” and your buddy would be like “Nuh-uh cuz I got a magic shield!” and you’d be like “So? My sword is magic and cuts through magic shields!” and your buddy would be like “For real?” and you’d be like “Yeah, totally” and your buddy would be like “AAARRRGGG! I’M DEAD!!!!”? Yeah, well, it’s pretty much like that.

Anyway, in Seattle there is a LARP organization by the name of NERO and its founders/members are the subject of this oddly compelling documentary.

The “stars” of Monster Camp are not just nerds. They are that rare, almost unbelievable breed of über-nerd that even I, (a guy with a cat in his lap, surrounded by Star Wars figures, blogging about a documentary he watched on his XBox), would de-pants and give a swirly to. But do the filmmakers take advantage of their social naiveté by choosing unflattering camera angles, manipulating the subjects into embarrassing situations, and/or impudently editing scenes to make the subjects appear to be charlatans?  Not for a second.

Rather than parading these outsiders across the screen for us to laugh at, the filmmakers present the characters and events with an air of dignity akin to a PBS special about an isolated island culture (but without an annoying posh British man spelling everything out for you and dropping his tone an octave at the end of every sentence).

Now don’t get me wrong here – this documentary isn’t trying to make the world take LARP seriously. It’s obviously the goofiest thing to happen since baggy bondage pants. But the filmmakers make the bold assumption that you, the viewer, are not a total moron and decide to let you discover the humor yourself, rather than hitting you over the head with it for 79 minutes.

All in all, this documentary is pretty awesome and just plain fun. Plus, if after watching it you ever find yourself stuck in an elevator with a dude wearing a cape, you guys should totally have something to talk about.

To see how many HP I give this movie, roll 2D6 (drop lowest, +3 CON).

A Second Opinion
I took a liking to just about every person in Monster Camp. This is a documentary about a bunch of people who never managed (or simply refused) to abandon their imagination upon entering adulthood, and I think that’s pretty cool. If you’re unfamiliar with the concept of LARP, and you classify yourself a nerd in an sense, then you will probably get a kick out of this movie. If not, then you should probably skip it.

-Rik

Lo

 Posted by at 9:30 pm  2 Responses »
Feb 172010
 

Guillermo del Toro came to mind when I first saw the cover for “Lo.” I love me some Pan’s Labyrinth, but I’ve had my heart broken by independent film covers before. Trepidatiously, I fired up the ol’ netflix and gave Lo a shot. Good thing I did, too, because it straight rocked my shit!

Lo begins with Justin, sitting alone in the middle of a pentagram he’s painted on his apartment floor. Now I’m no big shot wiccan, but I’ve watched enough movies to know you should never practice witchcraft alone. But it turns out that Justin needs to summon a demon to go fetch his girlfriend, April, from the depths of hell, and love makes people do stupid things. After slicing his hand open with a kitchen knife and stabbing the floor, the demon Lo appears. Lo is one part Oderus Urungus, one part Beetlejuice, and 100% fucking hilarious. And the movie goes on; Justin and Lo in a dark room for nearly an hour and a half. There are “flashback” scenes, all of which take place on a shoddily crafted stage and are acted out in the manner of a high school play. And there are song and dance numbers, and other demons and zombies too, but really, the meat and potatoes of this movie takes place in a dark room.

If this all seems a bit cheesy, that’s because it totally is, but in all the right ways! Writer/director Travis Betz crafts a pretty epic story, and makes it work on a pretty limited budget. The fact he manages to never take himself too seriously works in his favor. Some of the acting is never spot on, and there are a couple of scenes that seem to drag, but in the end Lo is just plain fun to watch. There are open knife wounds that talk, zombies that play in a band, demons that swear, sing and sling one-liners. And though Lo draws plenty of inspiration from Raimi, del Toro and Gwar, when it all boils down, it’s a love story. A pretty original love story with some good twist that should keep you interested during it’s short, 80 minute run time.

A while back I watched a movie called “Ink” and man, did that movie suck. Some people might whine, “but Rik, Ink was an independent film, created on a razor-thin budget.” To those people I say shut the fuck up and see Lo. This, my friends is how low budget movies are made. And when you consider that Transformers 2: Rise of the Machines cost 200 million fucking dollars to make, Lo is a goddamn triumph of modern cinema.

I give Lo: 4 out of 5 pentagrams.

Chocolate

 Posted by at 2:47 am  1 Response »
Feb 162010
 

I gotta tell ya, folks, Chocolate threw me for a loop. I went into it expecting your standard kung-fu kick-em-up. Instead, I was one-inch-punched in the heart by the touching story of a lovable young autistic girl named Zen. And then when my defenses were lowered, I was E. Honda hundred-hand-slapped in the fucking mouth with some of the most bad-ass and creative martial arts choreography I’ve seen in a while.

Here’s the deal: So there’s this chick Zin who’s the girlfriend of a crazy-ass Thai mob boss. She falls in love with this dude Massahi, who works for a Thai chapter of the Yakuza. They have a short but active love affair and are finally exposed. Needless to say, the boss is pretty pissed about this and cuts ties with Zin, leaving her to fend for herself.  He also banishes Massahi back to Japan and informs him in no uncertain terms that his relationship with Zin is over as hell. However, unbeknownst to the now absent Massahi, Zin is preggers and she eventually pops out their love child Zen, who, as it turns out, is autistic. But wait. It gets better.

Because being the unemployed single mother of an autistic child isn’t enough, Zin ups the ante by getting cancer. Luckily, one day Zin meets a portly young street urchin named Moom and adopts him when she realizes his potential for a.) much needed  assistance with Zen, and b.) bumbling-fat-kid comic relief. (Good call, Zin.)

So we all know what happens next, right? Just as things look their worst, Massahi finds out what’s happening and his love for Zin and the daughter he’s never met is so great that in the face of death, he goes rogue and karate chops his way back to his family to prove love conquers all. DUDE I AM KIDDING THAT DOESN’T HAPPEN AT ALL.

Massahi apparently isn’t one to rock the boat, so he just chills in Japan doing Yakuza stuff. What the fuck, right? So far, despite the goofy fat kid, this just sounds like a really super sad movie. Wouldn’t it be great if all the sudden it started kicking ass?

If movies have taught me anything, it’s that autistic folks are essentially awkward super-computers. However, Zen is a little different. Sure, she’s quiet, has no social skills, and has a penchant for sorting her M&Ms by color, but she also has Daredevil-style reflexes and can perfectly mimic fight scenes from old kung-fu movies. Interesting, but when will this come in handy? Well, Moom finds Zin’s old mob ledger containing the names of crooked business owners that owe her money. He decides that he and Zen should go collect on these debts to pay for Zin’s chemo treatments. Not surprisingly, when confronted by a fat kid and an autistic girl demanding payment on a mob debt, the owners tell them to get lost. But what Zen lacks in social grace, she makes up for in tenacity. She basically goes bat-shit and kung-fus the hell out of the owner’s goons and takes the money by force. This scenario plays out many more times with various assholes and their hapless cronies, all leading to an epic showdown with the mob boss.

Do you understand what I’m saying here?

This movie is about a sweet, lovable 13-year-old autistic ninja girl beating the ever-living shit out of bad guys and taking their money to save her dying mother while a fat kid watches.

This movie is fucking amazing. I give it 10 out of 10 roundhouse kicks to the solar plexus. Watch it right now.

What’s that? Not convinced? Did I mention that the evil mob boss’ entourage consists entirely of  karate-chopping gun-toting Thai lady-boys and one mildly retarded breakdancing ninja?

Yeah, that’s what I thought. Watch the fucking movie, dummy.

Assault on Precinct 13

 Posted by at 2:47 am  Comments Off on Assault on Precinct 13
Feb 132010
 

If “Night of the Living Dead” and “The Warriors” had a baby, it would be named “Assault on Precinct 13.”

Deep in the heart of south-central Los Angeles, a rag tag group must fight for their lives against a ruthless street gang. As if that weren’t sweet enough, the gang is called “Street Thunder.” Street Thunder! You can take your Bloods and Crips and cram ‘em, buster. Street Thunder is here and they are gonna fuck… shit… up! These guys are gonna hide in the bushes and shoot guns all up in the de-commissioned police station your hiding in. They’re gonna try and climb in through the windows. These bad-asses are out for blood. But they won’t utter a single word the whole time! They’re just super scary that way. This all goes on for about an hour and a half, but after about 20 minutes, it gets pretty old.

Steet Thunder!!!

The movie was written and directed by John Carpenter, and I love John Carpenter. As a kid I watched “Big Trouble in Little China” so many times I broke the tape. “They Live” is probably the best movie ever made. But “Assault on Precinct 13” has not held up since it’s debut nearly 35 years ago. Street Thunder, while totally frightening in 1976, I’m sure, just can’t hold a candle to the gangs of the ‘90s to which we’ve all become desensitized. This is not to say the movie doesn’t have it’s saving graces. Without completely spilling the beans, there is an awesome scene involving a little blonde girl, ice cream, and bullets.

The movie does have a certain camp value. I wouldn’t advise that you watch it alone, but with some friends, you could totally get your monies worth from “Assault on Precinct 13.” And afterwards, track down a copy of “They Live” and watch that too.