Sunday, August 28, 2011

Conan the Barbarian 3D (2011)

Well, I think we all know the story.
The second 1980's remake that a saw this weekend, and a huge disappointment.  So here's the good, the bad and the ugly of why.

The Good:
The riddle of steel.
Ron Perlman really shines as Conan's father.  The scenes with Perlman and young Conan, played by Leo Howard are the highlight of the movie.  The two share a natural chemistry that was missing from the other characters in the film.  

Way to turn a hot girl creepy. 
Rose Mcgowan is very creepy as the witch Marique, who has a super disturbing love for her father Khlaer Zym.  She actually out creeped the main baddie.

“I live. I love. I slay…I am content.”
Jason Momoa is excellent as Conan .  He plays the character as manipulative and smart character, who relies on more than brawn to get his revenge. The only downside is that he doesn't have much chemistry with female lead.  I blame this more on Rachel Nichols however. 

The Bad:
I'm a thug with a daughter who wants to have sex with me.
The main villain, Kahler Zym, is very underwhelming. He came off as a thug, more suited to be a henchmen than the main baddie.  A hero needs an appropriate villain, this guy came off as someone who should have been fighting Conan's friends.

Besides the underwhelming baddie, plot holes the size of hoover dam are everywhere.  Characters who could use magic, but don't, people who risk the end of the world just to get laid, etc. 

The Ugly:
The Conan birth scene was the most ridiculous thing I have ever seen.  When the whole theater bursts out laughing, at what should have been a dramatic scene,  you know they have done something wrong. 

I'm a princess or a monk or something.

Rachel Nichols character was not very well defined.  You never really had a sense of who she was. She should have been as defined as Conan, instead you got a one dimensional character who was just there for Conan to have sex with.

All in all this a remake that is best skipped.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Fright Night 3D (2011)

 Charley Brewster (Anton Yelchin) is a high school senior who’s on top of the world—that is until Jerry (Colin Farrell) moves in next door and Charlie discovers that he is a vampire preying on the neighborhood.

As a huge fan of the original I was a little nervous when I heard it was being remade.  My fears were unfounded as it turns out.  This new version manages to stay true to the original while being updated for the 21st century.  
Screenwriter Marti Noxon, a veteran of "Buffy" and "Angel", knows a thing or two about how to write dialogue for horror movies.
You have to have faith for that to work.
Colin Farrell does a great job seeming confident and more than a bit smarmy as Jerry the vampire.  The entire cast deliver great performances, but one stands above the rest.  

Doctor Who?
David Tennant takes the role of Peter Vincent and runs with it.  Roddie McDowell played the character as a sad washed up actor looking for a break.  Tennant's Vincent is a magician and an arrogant coward who has exploited the vampire legend to make himself rich.  It's very shocking to see Tennant drinking, cussing and generally acting like a douche-bag.

Anyone looking to remake a horror movie should look to this as how it's done.   My only complaint is that the film being in 3D wasn't really necessary. There were a couple of times it was cool, but mostly it could have been 2D and been the same movie.