'LET'S SCARE JULIE BENZ TO DEATH' TWOFER!JOHN RAMBO (2008, 4K UHD BD, GreyWeirdo: 6/27/2013)Caught between Sly Stallone's creative rebirth in 06's "Rocky Balboa" and his slide into cartoony antics in 2010's "The Expendables," this unrated version of 08's "Rambo" is too serious and nihilistic for its over-the-top carnage to be as fun as in the good ol' 80's heyday. But damn is it isn't cathartic when the Burmese army gets sliced to ribbons as badly as they slaughtered civilians. Too bad we have to endure graphic civilian torture porn and clueless American missionaries inserting themselves into a warzone to get to the balls-to-the-wall final act. In an action movie soaked to the bone with blood and guts, its best scene is when Rambo lets the mercenaries aboard his boat brag about their skills without telling them who he is. It's always the quiet one who is a true badass. 3.5 Unexploded WWII Mini-Nukes (out of 5)PUNISHER: WAR ZONE (2008, Blu-ray, Kyle H: 6/9/2015)Nobody can accuse Lexi Alexander of directing like a girl when this is easily the most violent of the three "Punisher" features. Too bad "War Zone" is also the laziest at developing its characters, with potential great villains like Jigsaw (Dominic West) and his brother Loony Bin Jim (Doug Hutchinson) presented as Saturday morning cartoon stereotypes. Thomas Jayne instead of Ray Stevenson as the lead would still result in "War Zone" being a shitty action movie, but at least it'd have a beating human at its core instead of a poser without personality. 2 Julie Benz-worn Black Wigs (out of 5)But wait, there's more!NEXT OF KIN (1989, HBO, Michael Giammarino: 6/1/2019)The same year Patrick Swayze ripped throats shirtless on his way to superstardom in "Road House" he also starred in this largely-forgotten, Chicago-set revenge thriller. Mobsters (including a baby-faced Ben Stiller) murder Swayze's baby brother (Bill Paxton), triggering their older Appalachian brother Liam Neeson into revenge mode... 19 years before "Taken" perfected a formula that Liam test-drives here for most of the second act. Stereotypical music, bad Southern accents (especially when Helen Hunt visits hubby Swayze's relatives), Michael J. Pollard being his usual weird self and, sadly, a cool-but-over-too-quickly ending that wastes the head-of-steam build-up that precedes it. Still worth seeing for the cast turning this lemon into bittersweet lemonade. 3 Shotgun-Shattered Pinball Machines (out of 5)Bones (2001, Tubi, JGodsey: 6/13/16)It's basically 1999's "The Haunting" but with black people in a (Canadian) ghetto, 50% less CG effects (which haven't aged well), a reduced budget and filmmakers (particularly Ernest Dickerson) clearly having fun with the material. Snoop Dogg lives up to his top billing (especially the 1979-set flashbacks), and when his revenge for being betrayed by his allies 22 years prior gets underway the movie comes alive. Pam Grier and most of the veteran character actors (Michael T. Weiss, Clifton Powell, Ricky Harris) run circles around the then-green young cast (Bianca Lawson, Khalil Kain, etc.) instead of complementing each other, and that's a shame. Come for Snoop's charm, stay for the squirmy worms. 3 Topless Katharine Isabelles (out of 5)
I freaking love Next Of Kin; I once saw Andreas Katsulas, who's the mob boss here (and also the One-Armed Man in The Fugitive) at a Dragon*Con and complimented his work in this. He laughed and said in his great voice, "You're from Chicago, right? Only Chicagoans bring that one up; everyone else here wants to talk Babylon 5."
Ironically there is little use of Chicago as a cool background for most of the movie. If Andrew Davis had directed "Next if Kim" Liam Neeson riding atop the train would have been extraordinary. Instead, like most of the movie, it's basic 'point-and-shoot' throughout. Shame.
THE MAN FROM NOWHERE (2010, dir. Lee Jeong-Beom) on Amazon PrimeDespite the title, Cha Tae-Sik is from somewhere. An unkempt man running a pawnshop in a dingy building, he befriends a young girl whose life is beyond unstable. When her mother gets in some big trouble with a criminal syndicate, both the mother and daughter disappear into streets. In search of them, Tae-Sik is drawn into a world of drug trafficking, child exploitation, organ harvesting, and other sordid activities. Getting the girl out of the clutches of the syndicate is going to lead to a lot of bloodshed. He will also have to evade the police.Not having many reference points for Korean cinema, it is difficult to judge this. I will start by stating that I liked the The Man From Nowhere. Not being accustomed to the fast editing of modern cinema, there were moments when I found the film distracting. The fight scenes, in particular, are cut in a very choppy manner. I had a hard time following what was happening in them. With a run-time over two hours, there were sections I felt were a little too drawn out. As for positives, the cinematography is excellent throughout, and there is a vibrant urban sensibility to the story. This is not the prettiest depiction of South Korea one can find.
Stick with South Korean cinema, and check previous columns on F This Movie for Patrick and other contributors' picks. As the Best Picture win of "Parasite" earlier this year proves, there's a lot of quality pictures that have been coming from there over the past 15+ years. "TMFN" was just an appetizer. :-)
Parasite is the only watch in a movie theater this year. Over the past couple of years, my interest in South Korean cinema has developed. Dramas and horror films are what I have largely seen so far. Today is opportunity to dive into a different side of it. If I had access to his films, I probably would have watched something from Park Chan-wook.
Revenge of the Pontianak (2019, dir. Glen Goei & Gavin Yap)In Malay mythology, a Pontianak is a vampiric ghost of a woman that takes revenge on the man who wronged her. That's also pretty much the entire plot of the movie. It's beautifully shot and atmospheric but offers very little in the way of surprises or scares.
Incidentally, I'm trying to see new-to-me movies from as many different countries as possible. Last year I got to 42, and with this movie, Singapore became the 40th country this year. Still got a couple more lined up for this month...
Entonces a usted le gusta ver peliculas de diferentes paises, senor Viinikka? :-)
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Joo, yritän katsoa elokuvia mahdollisimman monesta eri maasta, J.M.
The Business Of Strangers (2001)Micro-budget independent that feels like an adaptation of a stage play, with the limited locations and about a half dozen speaking roles. Ultimately this is a pretty decent two-hander with Stockard Channing and Julia Stiles as the two leads. Fred Weller as the lone supporting character of any substance, appears to have come out of some sort of early-millennium douche factory. The revenge element takes a little time to reveal itself but it’s definitely worth the wait. Thankfully the performances are pretty good and at 84 minutes, nothing about this overstays its welcome.
Death Wish 4 (1987, J. Lee Thomson)Maybe people shouldn't befriend Paul Kersey, it never ends well.I think I have come to the conclusion, especially after watching the Planet of the Apes movies a couple of months ago, that I just really like J. Lee Thompson. There is just a great way he constructs genre movies, he knows how to weave things or themes between the set pieces or just knows how to weave little short cuts in that just make me happy. Like how every time Kersey tries to blend in to find out more about the different drug operation, no one really believes that he works there. So more often than not he has to shot someone in the head. It feels like Thompson is constantly pushing the inherit hyper Masculinity in a Bronson action movie to almost the point of hysteria. And despite myself I enjoy it.Street Law (1974, Enzo G. Castellari)I love it, Street Law was apparently inspired by the orginal Death Wish, but it hadn't been released in Italy yet. The Italians move fast.It's my first Castellari, and I really enjoyed it. Street Law is very stylish, cool with some really beautiful shots. But what I really loved was Franco Nero's performance. He's completely out of his depth with the violence he's decided to confront. It's not about someone taking control, it's about someone losing control, kinda. Anyway, it's a great movie.
So tonights picks from my list are either Rolling Thunder(1977) or Last House on the Left(1972). Not sure if I wan't to watch either tonight but I'm leaning more towards Rolling Thunder. But honestly I'm considering throwing on something dumb like Revenge of the Nerds(its exploitative not sure if its exploitation though).
Go ahead with Revenge of the Nerds, Munkee. It is a more than suitable flick for 1980s comedy day, so I cannot imagine that revenge day is too much of a stretch.
Decided to go with the original plan and watched Rolling Thunder. Its a first time watch and a lot more of a character drama than the "Vietnam vet with a vendetta" Death Wish rip-off I was expecting. Really enjoyed it.
M.F.A (2017)Honestly, I just typed "revenge" into Prime Video and figured I'd go with where it led me. I sure as hell wasn't expecting this sad, horrifying story of a college art student, raped by a fellow student and having to go through the sick process of all the horrible questioning of her motives...who then starts to take revenge for all the other women who've gone through the same thing. It's a lot quieter and more contemplative than REVENGE, the movie I invariably kept comparing it to; this isn't exploitation at all, really, but maybe a hidden gem from a Brazilian director, Natalia Leite, I was unfamiliar with and a damn fine lead performance from Francesca Eastwood as she goes from quiet student to confident...monster, question mark? And hoo boy, it's not just about going after the rapists, but also the entire system how colleges handle rape. It's really worth checking out.
Been meaning to catch up with this one, thanks for the reminder! I’ll definitely check it out.
I rewatched THE CROW a few days ago bc I ordered one of those new shirts from Fright Rags, but early this morning I showed it to a friend for the first time. Its still awesome. A tried and true revenge exploitation film that was made iconic simply by not forgetting that its a movie, and movies need bells and whistles and a personality. Alex Proyas directs the hell out of this film. There is SO much to like (the "bells and whistles"). It is, a complete experience.The acting all around Brandon Lee is stuff movies miss - starting with Michael Wincott. What a treasure that guy is and what a crazy yet film-suiting turn. "Muh'daddy ownce towld mee…" It has the music, the score, and mood. Is there a more iconic scene than when Draven is putting on his makeup for the first time after returning to life set to The Cure's "Burn?" The film is so smart in how it handles the titular character. Brandon Lee isnt as outwardly dark as some were thinking he was. Brooding, yes. Tortured, yes. But in his deliveries, his joking, he's almost jovial and that is why he stuck around in the collective consciousness of pop culture. He had personality. His honest laugh at the end brings tears. If this film was made today, that character would barely speak, have no personality and exist solely for killing. We know Eric Draven loved his wife because we can feel it - we have a tremendous amount of empathy for him.
Ben, Thanks for showing this movie some love, I really liked this writeup. The Crow is sooooo good, makes me want to rewatch ASAP.
The Crow is my Partner's favourite movie. We usually watch it once every year. Every time I watch it, I enjoy Wincott more and more
Savage Streets (1984, dir. Danny Steinmann)A fast-talking, no shit taking Linda Blair seeks revenge on the punks who assaulted her younger sister. The revenge takes a while to get going as the inciting incident occurs about 30 minutes in and Blair goes out for blood about 45 minutes later, but I did enjoy the payoff.Some real tonal differences throughout in this one as we hang out with Blair's girl gang, which is great fun, and brutal acts of violence followed by some goofy stuff. Steinmann's gotta Steinmann.
Avengement (2019)Now that’s more like it! After yesterday’s wet fart of a Junesploitation pick, today's is a breath of fresh air (figuratively speaking, the movie itself is pretty grimy). VOD action maestro Jesse V. Johnson directs and Scott Adkins stars as a man in over his head, sent to a brutal prison for accidental manslaughter, now broken out to seek his reve...uh, avengement. Hey, at least it would be placed higher on the shelves in video stores if they still existed.Adkins dependably kicks all of the dicks as Cain Burgess, out for revenge against the people he blames for stealing his life. His movie-star looks are obscured by burns, scars, and some metallic dental work possibly performed by the Phantom of the Paradise, and while he is savagely brutal on top of all that he still manages to keep us as viewers on his side. As expected from the team of Johnson and Adkins the action is top-notch, and it’s very violent without ever becoming a cartoon. Great stuff.
WRONGFULLY ACCUSED (1998) In this spoof of The Fugitive, Leslie Nielsen is framed for a crime he didn’t commit and then hunts down the real culprits. This is a lesser parody movie, often for the most obvious joke they could think of. A few of the goofs are genuinely good ones, and Nielsen is always a welcome presence on screen. I daresay the movie won me over by the end. 30 days of HELLO MARY LOU: PROM NIGHT II, day 2 Watching today with an eye toward the prologue at the start of the movie, I’m struck with, what does the titular Mary Lou want? First she messes with the priest, then she dumps her prom date for another dude right in front of the first guy. Then we see she really, really wants to be prom queen. I daresay she doesn’t really want popularity, but instead she wants to pull one over on everybody – and that’s exactly what she does in the movie’s final scene.
This Mary Lou thing blows my mind. lol You are a MAD MAN.
"Wrongfully Accused" is to "The Fugitive" what "Hot Shots" is to "Top Gun." There are gags/jokes about other pop culture artifacts from the late 90's, but it mostly deconstructs the one movie it's parodying to whithin an inch of its cinematic life. Better than "Jane Austin's Mafia!" and "Spy Hard." 😎
I hope you still like Hello Mary Lou by the time June ends, Mac.
Vendetta (1986)Fairly standard women in prison movie about a stuntwoman who gets herself sent to prison to get revenge on the inmates that murdered her sister. It's fine aside from some really bad dialogue from the lead in a conjugal visit scene. Sandy Martin is probably the highlight as the villain. Also appearances from Roberta Collins, and Friday the 13th part 2's Marta Kober.
Watching this later today!
Sworn to Justice (1996) - Free on PrimeThe choice to give Cynthia Rothrock the powers of Christopher Walken's Trivial Psychic SNL character almost turns this into a low-power superhero vigilante movie. This is later-era (era) Rothrock where her sex appeal was played up a lot more, and while there's still some good action it's a little bit fewer and further between those scenes than I'd like. Also some odd comedy choices made in one fight which was still entertaining but a little out of place.I've become more of a Rothrock fan in recent years and this certainly is perfect Junesploitation viewing (you've not only got Revenge in there, but Kung Fu, and 90s action). She's got a handful of other movies on Prime right now that I'll likely be checking throughout the month.
Lady Snowblood (1973)Wow. I think it's safe to say I have a much deeper understanding of Kill Bill now. And I definitely need to check out more of Meiko Kaji flicks - she's so magnetic.
I love Meiko Kaji, Alkemious. Lady Snowblood is terrific, but my favorite films of hers are The Female Prisoner Scorpion series. If you have access to Amazon Prime in the United States, there are several of those available as well as other features. Jailhouse 41 would make a great entry for Prison! day. Or even today. Blind Woman's Curse is also a fun film.
Something just occured to me. With all these prison and revenge movies she did in the 70s, is Meiko Kaji Japan's response to Pam Grier?
Meiko was acting in movies in the late 1960s (The Stray Cat Rock series and some yakuza films), so she came before Pam Grier. Their careers for a period of just coincided, I guess.
Kill Bill: The whole bloody affair Collectively, both volumes of Kill Bill might be my favorite thing that Tarantino has ever done. Couldn’t think of a better choice for revenge day.
I'm with you. I know he has made "better" movies, but this one is my favorite and the one I revisit the most.
Same here Patrick. I’ve revisited most of his movies multiple times and Pulp Fiction is probably still my favorite for sentimental reasons, but the Kill Bill movies are just a whole different animal from everything else in his filmography and the ones I go back to the most these days.
Get Carter (2000)I'd heard this wasn't good so I didn't rush to see it but it's good! Stallone is pretty great here mixing his gruff action hero persona with a more sensitive side he occasionally breaks out in movies like Copland or Daylight. It's a bit too 2000 era (era) stylized but not enough to spoil the movie. It probably helps too that I'm seeing this before the original Get Carter.
Man ive had this cheap dvd on the shelf for years. might have to dust it off
Night of the Hunter (1955)First time viewing.I loved it. The style, the script, acting, everything. I'm so glad I finally got around to this, thanks to Revenge! Day. That's my favorite aspect of Junesploitation, the calendar guiding me away from my usual selection process.
Harry Brown (2009)Senior Citizen Death Wish.Very entertaining. My first time watching this post Game of Thrones, I never realized the big bad is Ser Davos Seaworth. A realization that caused me great undo excitement. "Love you, Davos!"
The Dark Valley [Das finstere Tal] (2014 - Andreas Prochaska)A dark and broody "western" set place within the Alps of South Tyrol. I don't want to spoil why Greider (Sam Riley) is out for blood in this movie, but it is beautiful to look at (despite its gruesome premise) and serves for another instance of a western not only set in snow, but also not playing within northern America. Besides Paula Beer's good performance as the "love" interest Luzi Gader (there is no actual love between her and Greider), I would like to stress out Tobias Moretti's charismatic impersonation of the evil Hans Brenner (Moretti is always somewhat stealing the scenes tbh). Pretty good revenge flick. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-WIhU4-hcv0
An Austrian western... interesting. It is available on Amazon Prime in the US, but only with the English dub. One striking aspect of modern European film productions- and I saw it at the beginning of The Dark Valley - is the number of companies and governments involved in funding a single film. It strikes me as a lot of entities for what seems like a moderate budget.
I think this is due to the low standards of the European film industry and funding opportunities. Especially in Germany, government-funded movies (which is the best way to finance your movie over here) undergo some revenue evaluation to reduce the risks overall, which often leads to rather boring or formulaic films. We do have good individuals over here, but we lack of a strong industry.
Avengement (2019)My favorite Adkins film with him as the lead. The fights are brutal & the story has just enough. Very good revenge movie.
Arrangement is just fusion. Good choice.
Revenge (1990) dir. Tony ScottThis is my 3rd time watching this movie and I just can't get into it. Maybe it's the fact that not much happens, or none of the characters really do much. I love the cast (shoutout to Madeleine Stowe, who is always great though given nothing to do in this movie) but it just doesn't do it for me. I am in full support of the Tony Scott renaissance however, this might be my least favorite of his movies.
Coffy (1973, dir. Jack Hill)This was my first proper Blaxploitation film, and I thought it was mostly fine. I've always known I needed to revisit it, now that I'm much more acquainted with the genre. Honestly, my opinion hasn't changed much. It's fun and breazy enough, but I think FOXY BROWN is significantly better. Maybe because it leans more into the action while this one more into the sexploitation. It's not bad at all though, certainly an entertaining watch. Pam Grier is our goddness forever.
Death Wish II (1982) Dir. Michael WinnerBronson's intelligent strategy of driving around LA until he sees the people he wants to kill is very compelling. Only an architect could craft such a brilliant strategy.
Revenge (2017)I don't know what has kept me from watching this for so long. I've heard plenty of good things and its been available on Shudder for a couple of years now, but I finally got around to watching it. Man the effects are strong in this movie. Its rare that even the best gore bothers me anymore, but I winced a lot watching this
I have a high tolerance for movie violence and there was a moment in Revenge when I thought I might pass out. It's so effective.
I think a lot of that is the sound design, too. It may be the squishiest movie I’ve ever seen.
Ms. 48 (1981) by Abel FerraraFerrara's second movie, released on BluRay thanks to Drafthouse Films, plays on that tried and true rape/revenge formula any fan of the Deathwish movies will already be familiar with. The film follows Thana, a mute seamstress who works in a high end clothing factory in Manhattan's garment district. But this is the Paul Kersey's New York, Travis Bickle's Manhattan. Within the first ten minutes the mean streets victimize Thana not once, but twice (I was reminded of last year's incredible The Nightingale) and bear witness to her traumatization and rebirth. The rest of the film, well you can fill in the in blanks. But, unlike Paul Kersey, she goes full serial killer by way of the femme fatale. Zoe Lund is quite frankly doing the lion's share of the acting heft, as most of the film's cast seem plucked off the street. She sells the horror, empowerment and psychosis of Thana in a way that overcomes the sophomoric, grindhouse presentation and elevates it a full letter grade.It's by no means a fun watch, but there is something special to the grit and guerrilla sensibilities of New York movies from that era. You can see the DNA of Bad Lieutenant under the surface. And Ferrara clearly illustrates his craft in working on what must have been a shoestring budget. It's dirty, brooding and strange.Worth tracking down on BluRay, and would make an excellent double feature with something like William Lustig's "Vigilante".
Massacre at Central High (1976)I had high hopes for this one(alright, I'll stop). I went to Central High. It was a lot like this school. There were sexual assaults that lead to people exploding. Look, it was a long time ago! Robert Carradine has two girls in this. He didn't have his Vader mask on it so it was consensual. Don't worry, there's a hang glider. It doesn't make it til the end.
Death Wish (1974)Interesting here how the story arc resembles Dr. Jeckyl and Nr. Hyde and Bronson’s behavior is a metaphor for addiction. Stephen Elliot plays the Police Commissioner; he also played the Old Timer in the celebrated PBS production of Steambath and the homicidal father-in-law in Arthur. Vincent Gardenia and Olympia Dukakis both play cops; later they would play Cher’s parents in Moonstruck. Hilarious (I laughed out loud) that Bronson’s character ends up in Chicago! Great small supporting performances by Stuart Margolin, Paul Dooley, Jeff Goldblum, and Christopher Guest. It’s still a bit jarring to hear Lawrence Hilton Jacobs (Freddie on Welcome Back, Kotter) shout the “f” word...
Big Bad Wolves2013, dir. Aharon Keshales & Navot PapushadoStreaming on Shudder and TubiTVI’ve been hearing intriguing things about this movie for years - that the violence is brutal and over-the-top, the dark humor creates an amazing balance of tone, the dialogue is insanely clever, that it was Tarantino’s favorite movie of that year, etc. I think it might’ve been hyped a bit too much for me as it was a perfectly serviceable film but ultimately lacked any real punch. The performances were solid, but the dialogue and tone felt waaay too Tarantino-esque for me to take it seriously (I love QT but everyone else needs to chill on trying to emulate him because it never works, case in point, this film). The movie clearly wants to be a 70s revenge flick and includes many of the trappings in its costuming, mis-en-scène, etc. but then breaks that in ways that are just eye rolling instead of meta or transgressive. Even though it’s considerably darker and bleaker, I would much rather rewatch/recommend Denis Villeneuve’s ‘Prisoners’ from this same year. It’s a much better character study of what this type of tragedy does, not only to the victims but to the community as a whole. Both movies have slightly predictable “twist” endings that are telegraphed fairly early on, but ‘Big Bad Wolves’ just seemed to lack the sophistication and nuance I was hoping for based on its reputation.
I liked it back in 2013, well probably 2014 was when I saw it. but yes, I too think it was overhyped. It was fine.
I Am Wrath (2016) - NetflixHey this Travolta movie is pretty watchable. Oh shit, Chuck Russell directed this! Nightmare on Elm Street 3's Chuck Russell! Blub (1988)'s Chuck Russell!
AVENGEMENT (2019): Baby Scott Adkins' first word was the Indiana Jones punch sound effect. MS. 45 (1981): I thought rewatching this would me feel a little better about the world. It did not. But, it's still pretty great.
Death Sentence (2007) dir. James WanIt seems like Goodman is the only one going for a Boston accent here
Revenge (2017)Second viewing after catching it last year on Shudder, and it played even better. Direction, cinematography, soundtrack, effects, it all comes together to make a really effective experience. And it plays the strong female lead well, she's just a badass without shoving it in my face. Really enjoyed it and highly recommend.
J.D.'s Revenge (1976)I like when a title gets straight to the point. This with Gremlins would make a great Glynn Turman double feature. He's excellent in both. His transformation is over the top but not silly. I wasn't expecting to get as invested as I did but he pulled me in. I definitely need some more Glynn Turman.
Knock Knock (2015)Okay, so I just Googled "revenge movies" and this one popped up and has our boy Keanu in it so obviously I watched it. It's a bit of a stretch to call it a revenge movie though...overall I spent more time yelling at the dumb choices characters make, but there's a great monologue from Keanu, so it has that going for it, which is nice.
The movie had me at Lorenza Izzo.
V for Vendetta (2005, dir. James McTeigue)One of my wife Stefanie's top favorite movies, and I finally watched it with her tonight. What the hell took me so long? This movie ruled so hard. It's a glorious mix of The Matrix, Robocop, and The Phantom of the Opera. So completely made for me. And so relevant for our times RIGHT NOW it feels like it was specifically made for 2020. But in a therapeutic way, not a miserable way. I love this movie.
Commando (1985)I saw Raw Deal for the first time recently and it was good but not great. Commando is great. It is more than great. Tremendous practical effects and falling bodies everywhere make my heart swell. Arnold is pristine. I had no idea some of his best quotes came from this film. Bill Duke two days in a row! Sprinkle on a little David Patrick Kelly and you have sweet perfection.
Jaws 4: The Revenge. My seven word review...Remember Kids, sharks make it personal everytime. This movie was awful, stupid, and had no reason to exist. My questions are. How drunk was Michael Caine during the filming of this? How much did Roy Scheider get paid for his 5 second sepia flashback and for his portrait to be used. Has their been a movie series/saga/whatever that started off with huge box office, accolades, all that and became a cheap distant after thought by it's last movie?
Vendetta (1986, dir. Bruce Logan)This works better for Prison day than Revenge, because the revenge elements aren't all that satisfying. It's weird to see that Mac's Mom had an acting career before being Mac's Mom.
Alley Cat. Prime says this was 1970, but it felt very early 80's. The lead looks like a stacked Pat Benatar and the main villain has this like special 80's greasiness. I thought this was a rewatch, but I have not seen this. No masterpiece, but it was fun. Kind of gentle and mellow as revenge flicks go. There's like three criminals in the violence gang our heroine martial arts against. Decent enough time waster with a surprising amount of nudity to keep things interesting.
Ricochet (1991)This movie was nuts. I'm overwhelmed.
Blue Ruin (2013) dir. Jeremy Saulnier The best Kickstarter movie?
I was going to go with some more obscure fare, but then remembered that John Wick 3 had been sitting on my DVR for some time now. It was more of the same, just tweaked a bit, but it was WELL DONE more of the same, so quite forgivable!
First Wives Club (1996)UNINTENTIONAL DAN HEDAYA DOUBLE FEATURE!!! This was kind of adorable. All three ladies were pretty damn funny. It dances very close to the edge of being to silly but it works.
The more I think back on movies I watched when I was young the more I realise how much Dan Hedaya was in so many. MOre Hedaya, cause it's always good!
So true! I still think my favorite is Cher's dad in Clueless.
Hannie Caulder (1971)Raquel Welch is one of those names where you say to yourself "well, there's no way this girl could be as hot as her name suggests. Wrong, self. The movie somehow balances the seriousness of Hannie's revenge and the comedy of Ernest Borgnine's gang. Christopher Lee! Guy from Real American Hero? (no disrespect to Robert Culp) Excellent way to top off Revenge! day.
Death Wish 3 (1985, dir. Michael Winner)“It’s like an old white man’s Home Alone!” my partner quipped midway through, and yeah, pretty much! I was amused by how transparently the films serves as a litmus test for a certain kind of older white male power fantasy circa 1985, in which attractive women half your age throw themselves at you due to your undiminished virility, friendly septuagenarian neighbors invite you to dinner and admire your cartoonishly phallic pistol, and the police encourage you to execute “creeps” with impunity while the whole neighborhood cheers you on from open windows. The batshit finale feels like it belongs in an unauthorized Italian knockoff Death Wish sequel directed by Bruno Mattei; this is both a compliment and a criticism.
Kill Bill: Vol. 2 (2004)Pretty wild that I let over a year go by between watching Volumes 1 and 2. Guess I was just artificially recreating the waiting period for moviegoers in 2003 and 2004. I found Vol. 2 at times to be way more slow and contemplative than I thought it would be. It's so nice to just settle in and know within seconds you're in the hands of a master and can just enjoy wherever they are going to take you over the next two hours. Finally completed the Tarantino filmography. Maybe my favorite.
Vengeance - 2007, dir. Johnnie To last movie before bed. its got the terrific shootouts you expect. the story is simple as comes w the territory, however its got a few twists in it that keep it fresh and alive.
also i'll add that its a 50/50 mix of Chinese and English languages, if anyone is turned off by subtitles.
Cats and Dogs: The Revenge Of Kitty Galore (2010, dir. Brad Peyton)Family watched this together. We have a soft spot for "talking animals" movies, and this was pretty funny and better than it's IMDB rating (4.3). It's a mix of real animals, cgi, and puppets. More of a Spy Kids type movie (with animals as the protagonists) than revenge, but I wasn't complaining as we got to see dogs put on jet packs and fly around, and at one point a dog grasp a cat in his paws and do a tarzan swing. This was Canadian Brad Peyton's first movie but he went on to direct San Andreas and Rampage among others.Revenge of the Blood Beast (1966, called "The She Beast" on IMDB)Starring Barbara Steele, but unfortunately she wasn't in much of it. It's about a witch that is drowned, and comes back to get her revenge on the town that drowned her. It's going for horror comedy, but the comedy is just weirdness half the time, which I thought added to the overall viewing pleasure. The few English people are the heros, and the Romanians (it's set in Transylvania) are all portrayed as bubbling idiots. It's an entertaining little movie, but not more.
Blue Vengeance (1989)Great NYC cop exploitation film filled with all of the sleeze and grimyness you would want. This played like it was straight out of the 70's but with a less serious tone and more goofy (unintentionally) with some obvious late 80's cinematography choices, music and decor. Really fun. VS just released it, I believe. Watched on Prime.
Star Trek: Wrath of Khan (1982)Never seen a single Star Trek movie that featured the original crew (or seen the series) and I was pretty impressed by the effects and the pacing. The film moves rather quickly and the creature effects look fantastic (though a human ear looks painfully fake, go figure). Also, for an 80's movie, the computers in the ship look surprisingly modern and not just comprised of green text and grid lines? That was refreshing.Overall, I thought the film was good, but I found Khan's death and Spock's death weirdly anticlimactic? Maybe that's just me.Still good.
Deadbeat at Dawn (1989)Joe Bob version. If you don’t mind waiting until the last scene for the revenge, this has some great moments and wonderful dialogue.
Lady Snowblood (1973- dir. Toshiya Fujita)Absolutely stunning, with perhaps the best on screen blood spurting I've ever seen. An obvious influence for Kill Bill (in more ways than one), I really loved this one. I feel like this might only get better on subsequent re-watches... I hope to find out.