31 DAYS OF HORROR REVIEW: SPLICE

CAST
Adrien Brody (Hollywoodland)
Sarah Polley (Dawn of The Dead)
Delphine Chaneac (The Pink Panther)
Brandon McGibbon (Saw V)
David Hewlett (Stargate: Atlantis)
Genetic engineers Clive Nicoli (Adrien Brody) and Elsa Kast (Sarah Polley) hope to achieve fame by splicing animal DNA to create hybrids for medical use at the company N.E.R.D. (short for Nucleic Exchange Research and Development). Their work previously yielded Fred, a dog-sized vermiform creature intended as a mate for their female specimen, Ginger. After successfully mating them, Clive and Elsa plan to create a human-animal hybrid that could revolutionize science. Their employers Joan Chorot (Simona Maicanescu) of N.E.R.D. and William Barlow (David Hewlett) forbid them to do this. Instead, they are to find and extract proteins used for commercial drug production from Fred and Ginger. Clive and Elsa pursue their own agenda in secret. They develop a viable female creature (Abigail Chu).
Although they had planned to terminate the hybrid before it reached full term, Elsa persuades Clive to let it live. The hybrid subsequently becomes aggressive and stings Elsa several times. The hybrid sheds body parts in an effort to escape when they try to destroy her, but they subdue her. They discover that she is aging at a vastly accelerated rate. Elsa discovers that the creature is undergoing mental development such as that of a young human child. Elsa names the creature “Dren” after the creature spells out NERD, having seen the letters on Elsa’s shirt. Elsa subsequently refuses to let Clive refer to her as a “specimen”.
After moving Elsa to a new location for fear of discovery, they find Dren has a dangerously high fever. In an attempt to save her they place her in a large industrial sink full of cold water. Clive places a hand around Dren’s neck and pushes her under the water, seemingly drowning her. However, it is found that Dren is amphibious, though it is unclear whether Clive knew this, having analysed scans of Dren, or whether he did intend to kill her. While studying Dren, Elsa and Clive neglect their work with Fred and Ginger. At a highly publicized presentation of their work, Fred and Ginger savagely fight to the death. It is subsequently discovered that Ginger had spontaneously changed to a male, but Elsa and Clive failed to notice because they were focused on Dren.
Elsa forms a motherly bond with Dren. After Dren attacks Clive’s brother, Gavin (Brandon McGibbon), they move her to an isolated farm. There, Dren develops carnivorous tendencies and retractable wings. She grows into adolescence (Delphine Chanéac) and becomes bored with being locked up in the barn, but Elsa and Clive fear that letting her outside might lead to her discovery. Clive realizes that the human DNA used to make Dren was Elsa’s, not from an anonymous donor as Elsa had told him. When Dren assaults Elsa again, Elsa removes Dren’s stinger and uses it to synthesize the protein for which they had been searching. Dren seduces Clive; Elsa discovers them having sex in the barn and becomes upset. Clive accuses Elsa of never wanting a “normal” child because of her fear of losing control; instead she chose to raise one as an experiment, where control could be assured. Deciding the only solution is to terminate Dren, they return to the farm and find Dren already dying.
William Barlow discovers human DNA in Dren’s protein samples and arrives to investigate. Elsa tells Barlow that Dren is dead and buried behind the barn. However, a winged, male Dren rises from the grave and attacks the group, killing Barlow and Gavin, raping Elsa, and killing Clive before being himself killed by Elsa. Elsa is later informed that Dren’s body contained numerous biochemical compounds for which the company has begun filing patents. Joan offers Elsa, now visibly pregnant, a large sum of money, which Elsa accepts.
A refreshingly sick, in every sense of the word, ‘Splice’ is a film that pays homage to the likes of Cronenberg and Lynch – weird, wonderful, and intellectually disturbing
Advertisements

REVIEW: HITCH

51S0ueUnwbL

CAST

Will Smith (I Am Legend)
Eva Mendes (Ghost Rider)
Kevin James (Paul Blart)
Amber Valletta (Gamer)
Julie Ann Emery (Movie 43)
Adam Arkin (Halloween: H20)
Michael Rapaport (The 6th Day)
Jeffrey Donovan (Burn Notice)
Paula Patton (Mission Impossible 4)
Kevin Sussman (The Big Bang Theory)
Alex “Hitch” Hitchens (Will Smith) is a professional “date doctor” who coaches other men in the art of wooing women, with a focus on long-term relationships. While coaching one of his clients, Albert Brennaman (Kevin James), who is smitten with a client of his investment firm, celebrity Allegra Cole (Amber Valletta), Hitch finds himself falling for Sara Melas (Eva Mendes). Sara is a gossip columnist and a major workaholic. While Albert and Allegra’s relationship continues to progress, Hitch finds it difficult to initiate a dialog with Sara, finding that none of his methods are working for catching her, while likewise being impressed with her ability to see through people’s attempts to make advances. Throughout the entire process, he keeps his career secret, claiming to be a generic “consultant.”
Hitch meets with Vance Munson (Jeffrey Donovan), a shallow chauvinist attempting to enlist Hitch to help him land a one-night stand with Casey Sedgewick (Julie Ann Emery), Sara’s coworker and best friend. Although Hitch refused to help, Vance misled Sara into believing that he used Hitch’s services. After finding out Hitch’s true identity, Sara publishes an exposé, causing Allegra and Albert to break up and Hitch’s reputation to suffer. At a speed dating cafe that Hitch sneaks into, Sara and Casey confront Hitch and cite Vance as their source. Hitch explains that not only did he refuse to work with him, Vance’s personality type is why women protect themselves, but that same protection also unintentionally made establishing genuine relationships difficult enough to create a demand for Hitch’s services. Hitch then tries to salvage Albert and Allegra’s relationship. He confronts Allegra, telling her that he doesn’t really do anything significant besides giving his clients confidence and allowing them to get the attention of the women, and that most of his customers, particularly Albert, really were successful just being themselves. Allegra reconciles with Albert. The film ends with Albert and Allegra getting married as well as Hitch and Sara resuming their relationship.
It’s a good romantic comedy that makes you laugh and cry and as a nice bonus, it’s good clean fun too

 

REVIEW: 2012

CAST
John Cusack (Runaway Jury)
Thandie Newton (Crash)
Chiwetel Ejiofor (Serenity)
Amanda Peet (Identity)
Oliver Platt (X-Men: First Class)
Woody Harrelson (The Hunger Games)
Danny Glover (Earthsea)
John Billingsley (Enterprise)
Blu Mankuma (Tin Man)
George Segal (The Cable Guy)
Stephen McHattie (300)
Jimi Mistry (East is East)
Agam Darshi (Sanctuary)
In 2009, American geologist Adrian Helmsley visits astrophysicist Satnam Tsurutani in India and learns that neutrinos from a massive solar flare are causing the temperature of the Earth’s core to rapidly increase. Arriving at a party in Washington, D.C, Helmsley presents his information to White House Chief of Staff Carl Anheuser, who takes him to meet the President.
In 2010, U.S. President Thomas Wilson and other international leaders begin a secret project to ensure humanity’s survival. The G8 nations, plus China, are building nine enormous arks, capable of carrying 100,000 people each, near Cho Ming, Tibet, in the Himalayas. A Buddhist monk named Nima is evacuated while his brother Tenzin joins the Ark project. Critical funding is raised by selling tickets for €1 billion per person for a handful of seats. By 2011, valuable items are moved to the arks with the help of art expert and First Daughter Dr. Laura Wilson.
In 2012, science fiction writer Jackson Curtis is a chauffeur in Los Angeles for Russian billionaire Yuri Karpov. Jackson’s former wife Kate, and their children Noah and Lilly, live with Kate’s boyfriend, plastic surgeon Gordon Silberman. Jackson takes Noah and Lilly camping in Yellowstone National Park. When they find an area fenced off by the U.S. Army, Jackson takes his kids over the fence, where they are caught and taken to see Helmsley. After being released from military custody they meet Charlie Frost, who hosts a radio show from the park.
That night, after the military evacuates from Yellowstone, Jackson watches Charlie’s video of Charles Hapgood’s theory that polar shifts and the Mesoamerican Long Count Calendar have predicted that the 2012 phenomenon will occur. Charlie also tells Jackson that those who discovered this and plotted to inform the public were killed through various ways. Megathrust earthquakes begin affecting California. Jackson returns home to rescue his family just as a 10.9 magnitude earthquake hits California. They escape from Los Angeles in a private plane as the Earth crust displacement begins and a major portion of California collapses and sinks into the Pacific Ocean. The group flies to Yellowstone to retrieve a map from Charlie displaying the location of the arks. They escape as the Yellowstone Caldera erupts; Charlie stays behind to broadcast the eruption and is killed. Pyroclastic flows destroy Yellowstone and Jackson is nearly killed. The group later lands in Las Vegas to find a larger plane. They also find Yuri, his twin sons, Alec and Oleg, girlfriend Tamara and pilot Sasha. Sasha and Gordon fly them out in an available Antonov An-500 aircraft as the Yellowstone ash cloud destroys the city.
Helmsley, Anheuser and Laura Wilson are flying on Air Force One to the Arks. President Wilson remains in Washington D.C. to address the nation one last time. With the Vice President dead and the Speaker of the House missing, Anhauser becomes the acting commander-in-chief, despite not being part of the presidential line of succession. Megatsunamis destroy coastal areas, including Washington D.C, killing everyone in these areas. When the group arrive in China, the plane runs out of fuel and everyone leaves through a car. Sasha is killed as the plane falls down a mountain and explodes. They are spotted by helicopters from the Chinese army. Yuri and his sons, possessing tickets, are taken to the Arks, leaving the Curtis family and Gordon behind. The remaining group are picked up by Nima and taken to the Arks with his grandparents. With the help of Tenzin, they stow away on Ark 4, where the United States contingent is aboard. As a 1500-meter tall megatsunami topples over the Himalayas and approaches the site, an impact driver becomes lodged in the gears of the Ark’s hydraulic doors, preventing a boarding gate from closing, which in turn prevents the ship from starting its engines. In the ensuing chaos, Yuri, Tamara and Gordon are killed, while Ark 4 begins to fill with water and is set adrift. Jackson and Noah dislodge the impact driver and the crew regains control of the Ark before it collides with Mount Everest. Jackson reunites with his family, and he and Kate reconcile.
27 days later as waters recede, the three arks approach the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa where the Drakensberg mountain range has emerged. Helmsley starts a relationship with Laura while Jackson and Kate rekindle their relationship.
Alternate ending
An alternate ending is featured on the DVD release of the film. After Captain Michaels, the captain of Ark 4, announces that they are heading to the Cape of Good Hope, he tells Dr. Helmsley that he has a phone call waiting for him. Dr. Helmsley discovers that his father Harry is still alive. Harry tells his son that he, Tony (whose arm is in a sling), and some of the passengers and crew survived the megatsunami that struck the Genesis. Captain Michaels states that they should have a visual on the ocean-liner shortly. After Kate thanks Laura for taking care of Lily, Laura tells Jackson that she liked his book. Jackson then gives Noah his cell phone back which he recovered during Ark 4’s flooding. Lily then announces that she sees an island. The Arks arrive at the shipwrecked Genesis and the survivors on the beach.
A watchable Disaster movie! Along the lines of the movie Day After Tomorrow – the earth is in deep trouble and how do we survive.  Pretty good disaster eco-movie with the usual warning for mankind to get its act together.

 

REVIEW: JOHNNY ENGLISH 1 & 2

CAST
Rowan Atkinsion (Mr. Bean)
John Malkovich (Red)
Natalie Imbruglia (Underdogs)
Ben Miller (The Prince and Me)
Greg Wise (Sense and Sensibility)
Kevin McNally (Pirates of The Caribbean)
MV5BMTYxMDQ1ODcyNV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwNjIxNDUxMg@@._V1_
Johnny English is an inept MI7 agent with dreams of being their most trusted employee. After Agent One dies in a submarine accident (courtesy of English making a mistake on checking the submarine hatch code), the remaining agents are assassinated via a bombing at Agent One’s funeral (again courtesy of English’s incompetence at security), leaving English as the lone survivor. English is assigned to follow a plot to steal the Crown Jewels, which are on display at the Tower of London. At the display, English is head of security, and meets the mysterious Lorna Campbell. The power is cut, and the jewels are stolen. During the chaos, English knocks out a security guard in the process and pretends to fight the assailant (in reality fighting himself). He later makes up a false description of the assailant to Pegasus. English and his assistant Angus Bough find the jewels were removed via a hole dug beneath their display case. The two follow a tunnel, confronting the two thieves Klaus Vendetta and Dieter Klein. The two escape in a hearse, with English trying to pursue them, but mistakes another hearse for the escape vehicle, crashing a funeral until Bough comes to his aid.
Johnny English
English connects the thieves to Pascal Sauvage, a French prison entrepreneur who helped restore the Crown Jewels. Pegasus, head of MI7, finds the claims of his involvement absurd and warns English not to involve Sauvage. In the car park, English and Bough are attacked by the thieves, but are unharmed beyond Bough getting a nose bleed (courtesy of English mistaking him for one of the thieves and covering up for himself by saying that there could have been other thieves and adamantly insisting that Bough drop the issue and move on). English again encounters Lorna Campbell in a Japanese restaurant as he recognized her motorcycle. During their meeting English is suspicious of her since he has seen her at two of their crime scenes and her records cannot be found on any government computer. English and Bough decide to break into Sauvage’s headquarters via parachutes, but English lands in the Royal London Hospital by mistake taking hospital employees hostage until he sees the “SAUVAGE” building with Bough inside. He then covers for himself by telling the employees that the hold up was just a test of their emergency response systems while telling Bough that he merely did a precautionary sweep of the immediate environment. Going to the correct building, the two learn Sauvage, who is a descendant of William the Conqueror, plans on making himself king, using an imposter to impersonate the Archbishop of Canterbury. Lorna arrives, revealed to be an Interpol agent tracking Sauvage. With evidence of Sauvage’s involvement, English crashes a party hosted by Sauvage but he is suspended from work by Pegasus.
With English knowing their plans, Sauvage scraps the fake Archbishop and instead sends his minions to force Queen Elizabeth II to abdicate by threatening her Corgies, causing the entire line of succession to be swept clean for Sauvage to become king. Lorna visits the depressed English, now in charge of the assignment by Pegasus, and convinces him to travel with her to Sauvage’s French chateau to spy on him. Eavesdropping on Sauvage’s meeting with renowned criminals, English and Lorna learn Sauvage plans to turn the United Kingdom into the world’s biggest prison when he becomes king. English and Lorna are exposed when the former accidentally activates a microphone, and they are taken prisoner. English tries to steal the DVD of Sauvage’s plan but picks up the wrong DVD. Bough rescues the two and they race to stop Sauvage’s coronation.
MV5BMTYxMDQ1ODcyNV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwNjIxNDUxMg@@._V1_English crashes the coronation and discovers the Archbishop is the genuine article. Undeterred, English orders Bough to play the DVD, only to find it is camera footage of himself dancing in his bathroom to “Does Your Mother Know” by ABBA, Sauvage having bugged English’s house beforehand, much to Pegasus’s disgust. English sneaks away but swings in on a wire to steal St. Edward’s Crown from Sauvage. Sauvage angrily shoots at English with a pistol, causing him to drop the crown. Moments before Sauvage is crowned king, English lands on the throne and is crowned instead. In his singular act as king, English has Sauvage arrested and restores the Queen to the throne, requesting a knighthood as a reward. In the final scene, English and Lorna drive to southern France for a romantic holiday, only for English to accidentally launch Lorna out the car by pressing the ejection seat button. Lorna lands in a hotel swimming pool, where Bough happens to be vacationing as well as the assailant that English described to Pegasus earlier in the film.
Johnny English is no where near as bad as what I expected. While it’s not the greatest nor the most intelligent film of recent times, it’s one that’s entertaining none the less. If your looking for something to sit down and watch, a film that will make you laugh without demanding much use of your Brain, then Johnny English is an ideal choice.
CAST
Rowan Atkinsion (Mr. Bean)
Rosamund Pike (Gone Girl)
Dominic West (Punisher: Warzone)
Eric Carte (Run For Your Wife)
Gillian Anderson (Hannibal)
Richard Schiff (The Cape)
Isla Blair (Valmont)
Eight years after the events of the first film, former Sir Johnny English (Rowan Atkinson) is learning martial arts in Tibet as penance for a botched mission in Mozambique which resulted in him being stripped of his Knighthood. However, he is contacted by MI7, who arrange for him to be flown back to London and call him back to service. Johnny returns to MI7’s London headquarters (now Toshiba British Intelligence) and assigned by new boss “Pegasus” (Gillian Anderson) to stop a plot to assassinate the Chinese Premier during scheduled talks with the Prime Minister. Johnny also meets with fellow agent Simon Ambrose (Dominic West) and MI7’s resident inventor, Patch Quartermain (Tim McInnerny). He is also assigned a junior agent, Colin Tucker (Daniel Kaluuya). In Hong Kong, English discovers an address that leads him to ex-CIA agent Titus Fisher (Richard Schiff). Fisher reveals that he is a member of ‘Vortex’, a group of three assassins and several accomplices, who sabotaged English’s mission in Mozambique. Vortex holds a secret weapon, which requires three metal keys to unlock when used together, and Fisher reveals that he is in possession of one. Fisher is then killed by an assassin (Pik-Sen Lim) disguised as a cleaner and the key falls into the hands of a Vortex member.
English chases the Vortex agent across Hong Kong and eventually retrieves the key from him. On a flight back to London, Johnny gives a suitcase containing the key to a flight attendant, who is revealed to be another Vortex agent. English is humiliated in front of the Foreign Secretary and Pegasus by the loss of the key, and assaults Pegasus’s mother, mistaking her for the killer cleaner.
Kate Sumner (Rosamund Pike), MI7’s behavioural psychologist, uses hypnosis on English to help him recall the events of his mission in Mozambique, and the identity of the second Vortex operative, Artem Karlenko (Mark Ivanir), a Russian spy. Johnny meets him at an exclusive golf course outside London. As they are playing golf, the same assassin from Hong Kong reappears and uses a sniper rifle disguised as a golf club to attack the party, claiming the life of Karlenko’s bodyguard and critically injuring Karlenko. Johnny takes Karlenko and escapes the golf course in a helicopter. They fly to the nearest hospital, and before dying, Karlenko reveals that the third assassin in Vortex is a member of MI7.
In a meeting at MI7 with Pegasus and the British Prime Minister, it is revealed that talks between Britain and China will continue in a heavily guarded fortress called ‘Le Bastion’ in the Swiss Alps. Over dinner, English informs Ambrose that he knows of a mole in MI7. Ambrose prepares to kill English, until it becomes clear that the traitor’s identity is unknown. Tucker confronts Ambrose in the bathroom, knowing he is the mole, but English scolds Tucker and orders him to leave. Ambrose convinces English that Quartermain is the traitor. English entrusts the key to Ambrose, who then tells Pegasus that English is the traitor. English confronts Quartermain, and realises that he has been framed. He is then shot at by MI7 snipers and agents posing as worshippers in a church, using suppressors on their guns to fool the priest. He is shot once in the left leg and fools Quartermain before escaping in a modified electric wheelchair after holding Quartermain at gunpoint. English goes to Kate’s flat, and convinces her that he is not the traitor.
Kate, scrutinising footage of the Mozambique mission, realises that the assassin behaved abnormally. They learn that Vortex owns a lethal drug called timoxeline barbebutenol that allows them to control a person for a brief time before they die of heart failure. Ambrose, the only surviving member of Vortex, plans to use the drug to kill the Premier in exchange for 500 million USD.
English visits Tucker and convinces him to help infiltrate ‘Le Bastion’. After passing through security at the fortress, English warns Pegasus (who now knows who the real traitor is) of the threat, and unknowingly drinks the spiked drink, rendering him vulnerable to Ambrose’s commands. Ambrose orders English to kill the Premier using a pistol disguised as a tube of lipstick. English tries to resist the effects of the drug, and engages in a fight with himself while Tucker attempts to interrupt communication between Ambrose and English. Tucker disrupts the frequency, replacing it with a song being played on a radio station, resulting in English beginning to dance. Ambrose reasserts his command, exposing himself in the process. English resists, shooting at Ambrose, who escapes. The effects of the drug wear off and English seemingly dies of heart failure. The paramedics try to save English with CPR but fail; he is eventually revived by Kate via a kiss on the lips, reviving him and making his heart rate boost. English pursues Ambrose, parachuting from the building and hijacking a snowmobile. English reaches Ambrose, who is in a cable car. The two fight, with English falling out of the car. Ambrose tries to shoot English, who shoots a rocket disguised as an umbrella at the cable-car, killing Ambrose. English then sits back and says happily – “Tucker, you clever boy!”
Because of his actions, English is due to have his knighthood reinstated by The Queen, but as the ceremony takes place, the apparent Queen reveals herself to be the killer cleaner dressed up as the Queen and attempts to kill English with the knighthood sword. English fends off the cleaner, to which she runs off. English attempts to catch and attack her, but when guards come in with the killer cleaner. English realizes that he has assaulted the real Queen and has been tricked once again. A post-credits scene, influenced by the barber scene in The Great Dictator, sees English preparing a meal for Kate to the tune of “In the Hall of the Mountain King”

If you enjoyed the first Johnny English film, you’ll enjoy this one too

REVIEW: THE SIEGE

CAST
Denzel Washington (Training Day)
Annette Bening (American Beauty)
Bruce Willis (Red)
Tony Shalhoub (Men In Black)
Mark Valley (Human Target)
Lance Reddick (Fringe)
Following the bombing of an American military installation in the Middle East (the film shows footage from the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing), the U.S. government orchestrates the capture of the mastermind believed to be behind the attack, Sheikh Ahmed bin Talal. In New York City FBI Special Agent Anthony Hubbard (Washington) and his Lebanese-American partner Frank Haddad (Shalhoub) are told of a hijacked bus, fully loaded with passengers and containing an explosive device. The bomb turns out to be a paint bomb and the terrorists manage to escape. The FBI receives demands to release the sheikh.
Hubbard eventually comes into conflict with CIA agent Elise Kraft (Bening). Hubbard takes a terrorist suspect into custody and arrests Kraft. Afterwards another terrorist threat is made and an MTA bus is bombed, though the children on-board are permitted to leave before the bus is destroyed. When the FBI captures a person of interest named Samir Nazhde he admits to signing the visa application of one of the suicide bombers in the course of signing many applications for student visas in his job as a lecturer. However, Kraft insists that Samir is not a terrorist and that his continued freedom is vital to the investigation.
The FBI eventually identifies and storms a safehouse belonging to terrorists who are associated with the bombings. However, days later, new terror cells launch more devastating attacks, starting with the bombing of the New Victory Theater in Times Square during an evening performance. This is followed days later by a hostage situation at an elementary school (which is resolved when Hubbard shoots the hostage taker). Shortly after this, a suicide bomber drives a van full of explosives into the lobby of One Federal Plaza, the location of the FBI’s New York City field office, resulting in over 600 fatalities.
In spite of objections, the President of the United States declares martial law and armored vehicles and elements of the U.S. Army’s 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions, under Major General William Devereaux (Willis), occupies and seals off Brooklyn in an effort to find the remaining terrorist cells. Subsequently all young males of Arab descent, including Haddad’s son Frank, Jr., are rounded up and detained in Yankee Stadium. Haddad resigns in protest. New Yorkers stage violent demonstrations against the army and the racial profiling of the Arabs and the Army fights to maintain control. There are reports of Army killings. When pressed by the White House Chief of Staff (Chip Zien) if the United States is holding the Sheikh, General Devereaux denies it.
Hubbard and Kraft, now revealed to be an agent named Sharon Bridger, continue their investigation and capture a suspect, Tariq Husseini. Using torture, Devereaux shoots and kills Husseini (off screen) in the course of the interrogation. Afterward, Bridger tells Hubbard that Husseini knew nothing of value because of the principle of compartmentalized information and, sickened, she finally tells Hubbard what she knows. It is revealed that she herself provided training and support to rebels opposed to Saddam Hussein’s regime, working with Samir to recruit and train the followers of the Sheikh. After the United States cut their funding and left them exposed, she took pity on the few of them who had not yet been slaughtered by Hussein’s forces, and arranged for them to escape to the United States, ultimately leading to the present situation as they turn their covert and bomb making skills on the country that now holds their Sheikh. She and Hubbard compel Samir to arrange a meeting with the final terrorist cell. In a discrete meeting with the White House Chief of Staff Hubbard is finally informed of the Sheikh’s apprehension, which was carried out at General Devereaux’s personal initiative. Hubbard convinces Haddad that he needs his help, and Haddad returns to the FBI.
A multi-ethnic peace march demonstrates against the occupation of Brooklyn. As the march is getting under way Hubbard and Haddad arrive at the meeting place, but Bridger and Samir have already left. Samir reveals to Bridger that he constitutes the final cell while in another sense he says, “there will never be a last cell.” He straps a bomb to his body which he intends to detonate among the marchers. Hubbard and Haddad arrive in time to stop him from leaving, but Samir shoots Bridger in the stomach as she struggles to stop him. Hubbard kills Samir, but despite their best efforts he and Haddad can only watch as Bridger succumbs to her wounds after managing to recite certain lines of the second half of The Lord’s Prayer and concluding with “Insha’Allah” – the Arabic phrase “God Willing.” Hubbard, Haddad, and other FBI agents raid Devereaux’s headquarters to arrest him for the torture and murder of Husseini, as well as his role in kidnapping the Sheikh in violation of the Logan Act. Devereaux insists that under the War Powers Resolution the authority vested in him by the president supersedes that of the court which issued the arrest warrant. He then commands his soldiers to aim their guns at the agents, resulting in a tense standoff. Hubbard reminds Devereaux that the civil liberties and human rights which he took from Husseini are what all his predecessors have fought and died for. Devereaux finally submits and is arrested. Martial law ends, and the detainees, including Haddad’s son, are freed.
Highly recommended, at least if you want more than just action and drama and enjoy thought-provoking stories.

REVIEW: PULP FICTION

517F3T1H3EL
CAST
John Travolta (The Punisher)
Uma Thurman (Kill Bill)
Samuel L. Jackson (The Avengers)
Tim Roth (Lie To Me)
Phil LaMarr (Free Enterprise)
Amanda Plummer (Drunks)
Bruce Willis (Die Hard)
Ving Rhames (Mission Impossible)
Rosanna Arquette (The Whole Nine Yards)
Eric Stoltz (Caprica)
Steve Buscemi (Ghost World)
Christopher Walken (The Prophecy)
Kathy Griffin (Shrek Forever After)
Alexis Arquette (Bride of Chucky)
Harvey Keitel (Red Dragon)

Outrageously violent, time-twisting, and in love with language, you don’t need me to tell you that Pulp Fiction was widely considered the most influential American movie of the 1990s. Director Quentin Tarantino merged amazingly complex yet casual dialogue with the serious violence of American gangster movies and films noirs mixed up with the wacky violence of cartoons and video games.

The fragmented story-telling structure keeps you watching to see how it all fits together. The script intertwines three stories, featuring Samuel L. Jackson and John Travolta, as hit men who have philosophical interchanges on such topics as the French names for American fast food products; Bruce Willis as a boxer; and Uma Thurman, whose dance sequence with Travolta proved an instant classic.

The moments of shocking violence are simultaneously humorous and ghastly. The surreal yet realistic atmosphere, long takes, and wittily literate non-stop dialogue engage me in the characters’ experience. I’m sure I could dissect this film to no end, commenting on the pop culture references and influences, I could comment on how I enjoyed Samuel L Jackson’s furiously philosophical character and the mysterious item that was in that brief case, but I won’t. I won’t because I don’t need to, it won’t change the fact that this film is an absolute classic, everybody knows it and it will always be remembered when people think of 90’s cinema, plus It’s so nice to watch a film that is a critical sensation and a box-office hit, as you feel clever and entertained

REVIEW: PLANET TERROR

CAST
Bruce Willis (Armageddon)
Rose McGowan (Jawbreaker)
Freddy Rodriguez (Ugly Betty)
Josh Brolin (Gangster Squad)
Naveen Andrews (Lost)
Marley Shelton (Pleasantville)
Jeff Fahey (The Lawnmower Man)
Michael Biehn (The Terminator)
Rebel Rodriguez (Angels Sing)
Fergie (Nine)
Michael Parks (Red State)
Danny Trejo (Machete)
Cheech Marin (Cars)
Zoe Bell (Oblivion)
In rural Texas, go-go dancer Cherry Darling (Rose McGowan) decides to quit her low-paying job and find another occupation. She runs into her mysterious ex-boyfriend El Wray (Freddy Rodriguez) at the Bone Shack, a BBQ restaurant owned by J.T. Hague (Jeff Fahey) and his sheriff brother (Michael Biehn). Meanwhile, a group of officials at a nearby US military base, led by the demented Lt. Muldoon (Bruce Willis), are making a business transaction with a chemical engineer named Abby (Naveen Andrews) for mass quantities of a deadly biochemical agent known as DC2 (codename “Project Terror”). When Muldoon learns that Abby has an extra supply on hand, he attempts to take Abby hostage, and Abby intentionally releases the gas into the air. The gas reaches the town and turns most of its residents into deformed bloodthirsty psychopaths, referred to as “sickos” by the surviving humans. The infected townspeople are treated by the sinister Dr. William Block (Josh Brolin) and his unhappy, unfaithful bisexual anesthesiologist wife Dakota (Marley Shelton) at a local hospital.
Random zombie attacks begin along the highway, causing El Wray, with Cherry as his passenger, to crash his truck. In the aftermath, several zombies tear off Cherry’s right leg. Also falling victim, fatally, is Tammy (Stacy “Fergie” Ferguson), who was on her way to into town to reunite with her former lover Dakota. When Tammy’s body arrives at the hospital, Dr. Block recognizes her and by comparing text messages on the cellular phones of Tammy and his wife, realizes Dakota was about to leave him. He then attacks Dakota with her own anesthetic syringe needles, stabbing her repeatedly in the hands, rendering them useless, before locking her in a closet to tend to other patients, including Cherry, who is still alive.
El Wray is detained by Sheriff Hague based on past encounters between the two men. As the patients transform into zombies, El Wray leaves the police station and arrives at the hospital, attaching a wooden table leg to Cherry’s stump. As El Wray and Cherry fight their way out of the zombie-infested hospital, Dakota escapes to her car, but in struggling to open its door with her numbed hands, accidentally breaks her left wrist. She eventually manages to drive away. Meanwhile, Block becomes infected along with others, while Cherry and El Wray take refuge at the Bone Shack.
Dakota retrieves her son Tony (Rebel Rodriguez) and takes him to her father, Earl McGraw (Michael Parks), a Texas Ranger. Tony, who was given a revolver by his mother, accidentally shoots himself in the face after being told not to point it at himself. Cherry and El Wray make love in J.T.’s bedroom. Due to a “missing reel”, what happens immediately following this is not known, but when the film returns, Sheriff Hague has been shot in the neck by one of his own officers, zombies are massing outside the Bone Shack, which is set on fire, and Wray has evidently told Hague who he really is, with both men hinting at some important backstory dialogue that probably happened during the “missing reel”. Dakota, Earl, and Tony’s crazed babysitter twins (Electra and Elise Avellan) arrive at the Bone Shack. With Sheriff Hague badly injured, the group decides to flee to the Mexican border, before being stopped by a large mob of zombies. Muldoon’s men arrive, and kill the zombies before arresting the group. They learn from Abby that the soldiers are stealing Abby’s supply of the gas because they are infected with it and the only treatment is by constant inhalation of the gas, which delays mutation. They also learn that a small percentage of population is immune to the gas, suggesting a possible treatment, which is why Muldoon quarantined the survivors. As Cherry and Dakota are taken away by two soldiers (Quentin Tarantino credited as “Rapist #1” and Greg Kelly credited as “Rapist #2”), the others defeat the security guards. J.T. sustains a gunshot wound in the process, and the group searches for Muldoon. Discovered by El Wray and Abby, Muldoon explains that he killed Osama bin Laden before he and his men were infected with DC2 and were ordered to protect the area. El Wray offers a respectful recognition of Muldoon’s military service before he and Abby shoot the mutating Muldoon.
Meanwhile, Cherry is forced to dance by Rapist #1 while being held at gunpoint. Cherry attacks by breaking her wooden leg across the rapist’s face and stabbing him in his eye with the stump. Dakota, after realizing she has regained feeling in her hands, quick-draws her syringe launcher and stuns Rapist #2. El Wray and Abby arrive to rescue Cherry and Dakota, and El Wray replaces Cherry’s broken wooden leg with a modified M4 Carbine with a M203 grenade launcher attachment. She promptly kills Rapist #1 and several zombies with it.
J.T., wounded and lying beside his dying brother, stays behind to detonate explosives to eliminate the zombies still in the complex while the others flee. The survivors make plans to escape by stealing helicopters but must fight past the remaining zombies. Abby dies (and hope for a cure with him) when a ballistic projectile blows his head up. An infected Block then arrives and is killed by Earl, shortly before the survivors use the blade tips of their transport helicopter to kill all the remaining zombies. However, while saving Cherry from a zombie, El Wray is fatally wounded. In the epilogue, Cherry (now sporting a minigun prosthetic leg) leads the group and many more survivors to the Caribbean beach at Tulum, Mexico, where they start a peaceful new society during a world-wide zombie outbreak. In the final moments of the film, it is revealed that Cherry Darling has given birth to El Wray’s daughter (alluded to earlier during El Wray’s final scene when he puts his hand on her stomach and restates his motto “I never miss”). In a post-credits scene, Dakota’s son Tony is sitting on the beach at the survivor’s “base” playing with his turtle, scorpion, and tarantula.
Rodriguez has always handled the cinematography, editing, and music for his pictures– he coined the phrase “shot, chopped, and scored” for his Renaissance man approach to his pictures. The film is a visual extravaganza, not only for the gore and make-up artistry , but for Rodriguez’s keen eye for photography on films of this ilk as well as the artificial flaws he implants in the movie to lend authenticity to the idea that this film was meant for another era. Scratches on film, color errors, skipping frames, burn outs on reels as well as a missing reel give “Planet Terror” an atmosphere of cool.