REVIEW: SCARY MOVIE V

CAST

Ashley Tisdale (High School Musical)
Simon Rex (The Forsaken)
Erica Ash (Minna no le)
Katrina Bowden (Piranha 3DD)
Terry Crews (White Chicks)
Jasmine Guy (The Vampire Diaries)
Darrell Hammond (Epic Movie)
Sarah Hyland (Vampire Academy)
Heather Locklear (Return of Swamp Thing)
J.P. Manoux (Scooby-Doo)
Bow Wow (Smallville)
Jerry O’Connell (Scream queens)
Tyler Posey (Teen Wolf)
Molly Shannon (Bad Teacher)
Snoop Dgg (Training Day)
Charlie Sheen (Two and a Half Men)
Lindsay Lohan (Mean Girls)

Charlie Sheen and Lindsay Lohan get together to make a sex tape with over 20 cameras beside Sheen’s bed. The time-lapsed tape fast forwards through the two doing all sorts of bedroom antics, including gymnastics, riding a horse, and having clowns jump in under the sheets. Sheen is pulled into the air by a paranormal force and thrown against walls, shelves, and doors until he lands on the bed again. Lohan is frightened so she decides to go home when she flies into the air as well; she becomes possessed and throws him into the camera and kills him. The text explains that Sheen’s body was found that day but he didn’t stop partying until days later, and that his three kids were found missing, Lohan was arrested, again, and a reward was put out for the missing children.
Several months later, Ja’Marcus (Snoop Dogg) and D’Andre (Mac Miller) are walking in the Humboldt County woods in California in search of cannabis plants to steal. After stealing one and fleeing, they take shelter in a cabin in the woods. Upon entering they see three strange creatures, later confirmed to be Sheen’s children, and turn them in for the reward. The feral children are placed in isolation at a child development research center for a few months until they are deemed well enough to be returned to familial custody. When Sheen’s brother, Dan Sanders (Simon Rex) and his wife Jody (Ashley Tisdale) come to collect them, they are told they can have them if they agree to stay in a large suburban middle-class home fitted with security cameras. Jody is reluctant to take the kids at first but soon adjusts to having them. In an attempt to bond with their new children, Jody auditions for a ballet performance, Swan Lake, and is cast in the lead role as the Swan Queen.
Meanwhile, a continuing pattern of bizarre paranormal activity in their new home makes them investigate further. They eventually learn from the children that the attacks on their home are by “Mama”, the mother of the children, who is under a curse and is trying to get them back so she can sacrifice both herself and the children. Maria, the couple’s Hispanic live-in maid, is frightened and keeps experimenting with various rituals, Catholic and otherwise, to ward off the evil spirits in the house. During the day, Dan is frustrated with the modest progress of his test subjects at a primate intelligence research facility; ironically, Dan is not bright enough to realize that one of the chimpanzees, Caesar, is now actually much smarter than he is.
Jody and Dan, with the help of Jody’s close friend Kendra Brooks (Erica Ash), who Jody met at her ballet class, must quickly find a way to lift the curse and save their family. Along the way, they seek the assistance of psychic Blaine Fulda, who turns out to be a complete fraud, and a dream extractor named Dom Kolb (Ben Kornish), who helps them understand that the solution to their problems lies in the mysterious Book of the Dead. However, Jody and Kendra fail to see what the book is capable of, oblivious to four friends continuously becoming possessed and reviving in the cabin. They wreak havoc when either of the two read the two passages of the book; one that unleashes demons, “gort klaatu barada nikto”, and the other that revives them from possession. When “Mama” takes the children to a cliff to sacrifice them, Jody fails to lift the curse with the book, but does manage to knock the evil spirit into Ja’Marcus and D’Andre’s pool containing a live shark, which then devours her.
Realizing the love for her adopted children is all she needs in life, Jody gives the part of the Swan Queen to Kendra, who performs the dance in the style to that of a stripper. The performance is heavily applauded by an audience that includes Jody, Dan, the children, and Madea. The story’s narrator is revealed to be Caesar, who then informs the audience that the humans should enjoy as much time they had on earth and says that apes will one day take over the world. In a post-credits scene, Sheen wakes up, with Dom Kolb sitting beside him, from a dream extraction, i.e. the whole movie was a dream. After Kolb informs that Sheen will be sleeping with Lohan, a car crashes into the room, killing Sheen. Revealing Lohan as the driver, she gets out of the car, says to Kolb “You were driving” and throws him the keys, blaming the accident on him.

Scary Movie 5 has some genuine funny moments, but too few & far to be consistent like it’s predecessors. The script is weak, with too much scraping the bottom of the barrel repetitive visual comedy, Simon Rex getting beaten up umteen times in identical fashion get’s unfunny, fast. And it lacks any real believable flow connecting all the spoofed films together. Iv’e liked all the previous Scary Movie films, but this is the first one iv’e had to force myself to sit all the way through.

REVIEW: THE CRAZY ONES

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CAST
Robin Williams (Jumanji)
Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy)
James Wolk (For a Good Time Call…)
Hamish Linklater (Pushing Daisies)
Amanda Setton (Beauty and the Beast 2012)
NOTABLE GUEST CAST / RECURRING CAST
Kelly Clarkson (American Dreams)
Gail O’Grady (Superboy)
J.D. Walsh (Two and A Half Men)
Saffron Burrows (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)
Josh Groban (The Muppets)
Brooke Lyons (2 Broke Girls)
Brad Garrett (Garfield)
Ashley Tisdale (Scary Movie 5)
Missi Pyle (Dodgeball)
Kurt Fuller (Superhero Movie)
Sarah Baker (Mike & Molly)
Marilu Henner (Vamps)
Joshua Gomez (Chuck)
Robin Williams was finally back to doing what he’s always done best — off-the-cuff riffing on whatever subject you put in front of him. He’s brilliant. While America’s sense of humor has changed a bit since Mrs. Doubtfire, Williams’ ability to turn his incredible sense of humor into a source of drama  shows that as an actor, he’s gone from silly to serious and come back out the other side with a remarkable ability to showcase the two simultaneously and sensitively.
Sarah Michelle Gellar is perfectly cast in her role, as a foil for Williams. Her ability to  see the serious and important sides of absurd and silly situations is exactly what Williams’ character needed to have the truth of his tragicomic situation highlighted.
This show isn’t going to appeal to everyone — it’s paced like Scandal, has the emotional volatility of the Newsroom, and the pop culture references of Franklin & Bash. The problem is that it’s billed as a zany comedy/Mad Men with Robin Williams, but the truth is that it’s actually a very dramatic story hidden beneath zaniness, and a lot of people are going to have a problem with that.
Sadly the show lasted one season and not long after we lost Robin Williams. It’s a good show to see just how good he was as an actor.

REVIEW: FAMILY GUY – DVD SEASONS 11-15

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MAIN CAST (VOICES)

Seth MacFarlane (Flashforward)
Alex Borstein (Power Rangers Zeo)
Seth Green (IT)
Mila Kunis (Black Swan)
Mike Henry (Ted)
Jennifer Tilly (Curse of Chucky)
Patrick Warburton (Scream 3)
Adam West (60s Batman)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST (VOICES)

Christina Milian (Bring it On 5)
Patrick Stewart (American Dad)
Nana Visitor (Star Trek: DS9)
Carrie Fisher (Star wars)
Dana Gould (Mob City)
Arianna Huffington (The Cleveland Show)
Christine Lakin (Valetnine’s Day)
Bill Maher (A Million Ways To Die In The West)
Ashley Tisdale (Scary Movie 5)
David Boreanaz (Bones)
Gary Cole (Chuck)
Rachael MacFarlane (American Dad)
Adam Carolla (Two Guys and a Girl)
Phil LaMarr (Free Enterprise)
Jessica Stroup (Ted)
Alan Tudyk (Firefly)
Alexandra Breckenridge (The Walking Dead)
Dee Bradley Baker (American Dad)
Nina Dobrev (The Vampire Diaries)
Laura Vandervoort (Bitten)
Cheryl Tiegs (The Brown Bunny)
Frank Welker (The Simpsons)
Drew Barrymore (Poison Ivy)
Meredith Baxter (Family Ties)
Julie Hagerty (Airplane)
Michael Gross (Tremors)
Wallace Shawn (The Princess Bride)
Judy Greer (Jurassic World)
Chris O’ Dowd (St. Vincent)
Tara Strong (Batman: TAS)
Ioan Grufford (Ringer)
Ryan Reynolds (Deadpool)
Lacey Chabert (Mean Girls)
Fred Tatasciore (Hulk vs)
Kevin Durand (Dark Angel)
Scott Grimes (American Dad)
Ari Graynor (Bad Teacher TV)
Missi Pyle (Dodgeball)
Sanaa Lathan (Blade)
R. Lee Ermey (Full Metal Jacket)
Joel David Moore (Bones)
Jessica Barth (Ted)
Marlee Matlin (My Name Is Earl)
Sara Fletcher (Icrime)
David Herman (Futurama)
Ellen Page (Super)
Ricky Gevais (Ghost Town)
Lucy Davis (Shaun of The Dead)
Scott Bakula (Chuck)
Eddie Kaye Thomas (American Pie)
Cate Blanchett (The Hobbit)
Anna Kendrick (The Voices)
Martin Spanjers (8 Simple Rules)
Dan Castellaneta (Fantastic Four)
Billy Gardell (Mike & Molly)
Jon Hamm (Mad Men)
Sandra Bernhard (2 Broke Girls)
John De Lancie (Star Trek: TNG)
Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory)
Will Sasso (Anger Management)
Emily Osment (Mom)
Megan Hilty (The Good Wife)
Jessica Biel (New Girl)
Christine Baranski (The Big Bang Theory)
Giovanni Ribisi (Ted)
Emma Roberts (Scream Queens)
Chad L. Coleman (Arrow)
Tony Sirico (Goodfellas)
Ashley Benson (Spring Breakers)
Liam Neeson (Batman Begins)
Lauran Bacall (The Big Sleep)
Cary Elwes (The Princess Bride)
Freddy Rodriguez (Planet Terror)
Keke Palmer (Scream Queens)
Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Kick-Ass)
David Thewlis (Harry Potter)
Hank Azaria (The SMurfs)
Nancy Cartwright (The Simpsons)
Julie Kavner (Rhoda)
Yeardley Smith (As Good As It Gets)
Julie Bowen (Modern Family)
Maya Rudlph (Bridesmaids)
Carl Lumbly (Alias)
Ana Ortiz (Ugly Betty)
Lucas Grabeel (Smallville)
Ana Gasteyer (What A Woman Wants)
Glenn Howerton (That 80s Show)
Allison Janney (Mom)
Nat Faxon (The Descendants)
Harvey Fierstein (Mulan)
Cristin Milioti (How I Met Your Mother)
T.J. Miller (Deadpool)

Season 11 is really the reamaing of episodes of season 9 but by now you get use to the dvd season. great epsiodes and more greats jokes and anyones fair game, be it the spiritual, who get assaulted in “Brian Writes a Bestseller,” as the dog writes a quickie self-help guide, but can’t defend it against Bill Maher’s questions, pretty much any minority and Meg, the family’s socially-awkward daughter, who not only tries to weasel her way into wheelchair-bound Joe’s life, but hooks up with her brother. Nazis, a standard part of the show after so many years, get their moment to shine as well, as the neighborhood pedophile Herbert recognizes Chris’ new friend as a war criminal, setting up an epic old-man fight, and perhaps one of the few times in history where you might find yourself rooting for a kid-toucher.


One of strangest jokes is where Peter is reminiscing about 1985, and notes that it gave us the gayest music video ever, before showing nearly half of David Bowie and Mick Jagger’s “Dancing in the Streets.” As it plays, you start wondering when we’ll get back to the show, before beginning to question if we’re ever going back. And then you start questioning how the video ever came into existence. Then you ask, how did they get the rights to use it in the show this way? Then you kind of forget you’re watching Family Guy. Then you kind of wish you were watching the video again, but that was the point of the episode doing it to mind screw you.

 This season is a pretty strong one. It has the mean-spirited episode is Screams Of Silence: The Story Of Brenda Q and it’s not only the strangest episode on the season but one of the strangest of the entire series. Basically Glenn’s sister gets into an abusive relationship and he, Peter and Joe decide to take care of the problem. The episode gets increasingly darker as it plays out and the ending, which is presented straight and without any obvious irony or attempt at humor, is pretty grim. The crew should get credit for tackling a serious social issue with at least some semblance of seriousness but is this really the right format to raise an issue like this? Opinions will vary, obviously, but this episode is twisted.

Aside from that, it’s more or less business as usual. There are some fun celebrity cameos here, the most obvious one being Ricky Gervais who provides the voice of a dolphin who helps Peter out and then demands a ridiculous amount of favors in return. The Lottery Fever series opener is a fun one which shows not only how Peter behaves after winning the lottery but how those around him will leach off of him when he does. We get to see Brian take mushrooms before a hurricane hits the town and then watch him trip out and see some seriously bizarre hallucinations. The Back To The Pilot episode also stands out as we see Stewie travel back with Brian in tow to January 31, 1999 (which was the broadcast date of the series’ first episode). This shows how the series has changed over the years and also how in just as many ways it has stayed the same.

Quahog news anchor Tom Tucker gets the spotlight in Tom Tucker: The Man And His Dream in which we learn about his acting career. It seems he played Michael Myers in Halloween IV and once Peter learns that, he and James Woods get involved in resurrecting his thesping profession. In Killer Queen Peter and Chris wind up at fat camp where a serial killer is at work, while back in Quahog, Stewie is terrified by the artwork of Queen’s New Of The World album cover. H. Jon Benjamin from Bob’s Burgers and a bunch of other great credits does a guest voice here. Stewie falls for a girl named Penelope, voiced by Kate Blanchett, in Mr. And Mrs. Stewie but of course that can’t end well even if she shares his love of weapons and math. Tea Party is another stand out. When Peter tries to open his own business and gets shut down, he becomes an advocate for small government and takes hardcore conservative Tea Party ideas to ridiculous extremes with predictably funny results.

All in all, this is a pretty great season. It’s also fairly daring, not that the show has ever really shied away from controversy but they definitely push things on a visual level here. That’s not a bad thing, so long as you’re accepting of the fact that as offensive as the series can be, it’s an equal opportunity offender and it provides a great opportunity to laugh at the absurdity that is all around us on a daily basis.

So how does this season hold up? In a lot of ways, it’s more of the same, but at the same time, by being more of the same there’s a certain expectation of unpredictability that this collection consistently meets and occasionally exceeds. You get to a point in the show where you expect the unexpected, and there’s a whole lot of unexpected to appreciate this time around. The season starts off strong with Into Fat Air where Lois runs into an ex-boyfriend who boasts about his family’s accomplishments. This gets Lois feeling competitive and before you know it, the Griffins are climbing Mount Everest. Shades of Alive run deep in this particularly perverse episode. The show takes on the Nielson Ratings in Ratings Guy. When the Griffins are selected to a Nielson family, Peter goes for a blatant abuse of his power to shape TV to his liking but is then tasked with trying to set things right. It’s actually a pretty amusing take at the fickle viewing habits of the general public. The health care industry and its corporate ties are taken on in The Big C when Peter finds out that his father in law has been keeping the cure for cancer his corporation has discovered secret in the name of making more profits off of treatment. As irreverent as this series gets, this episode will at least get you thinking…

The seemingly obligatory time travel episode in this season is Yug Ylimaf and once again Stewie and Brian cruise back in time and goof off. It’s old hat at this point but there’s comfort in familiarity. We get to learn more about Joe’s disability when the man who shot him and confined him to a live in a wheelchair goes on the lam and Peter, Joe and Quaigmire hunt him down to get revenge. The Jesus, Mary and Joseph! episode lets Peter tell us his own version of the Nativity Story in what is essentially a Christmas episode gone awry. Nothing is sacred, fans know that by now. Quagmire is the focus of The Giggity Wife, an episode that shows what happens when Glenn marries a skaggy old hooker on a trip with Peter and Joe. He realizes quickly that this was a horrible idea but she won’t grant him a divorce. Glenn tries to convince her that he’s actually gay, with Peter’s help. In Chris Cross the elder Griffin son swipes some money from his parents to go out and buy some cool new sneakers. When Meg finds out, she blackmails him but Chris quickly has his fill and decides to go live down the street with everyone’s favorite pedophile, his old friend Herbert. Meanwhile, Stewie convinces Brian to help him track down Canadian songstress Anne Murray. In Call Girl Lois uses her voice to make some extra money as a phone sex operator and in Turban Cowboy Peter befriends a Muslim and then converts to Islam. Phone sex might not be so topical these days, but the Islam episodes pushes some buttons in some clever ways.

As the season comes to a close, in the Bigfat episode we find out what happens when Peter, Joe and Quagmire go on a trip to Canada. Peter goes missing for months and when they finally find him, he’s lost the ability to communicate like a ‘normal person.’ Total Recall is another ‘Rupert’ inspired episode where Stewie and Brian try to get the teddy bear back after a recall is done. Peter and friends try to save their favorite bar in Save The Clam while Peter takes up farming in Farmer Guy, but soon gives that up in favor of dealing meth. Road To Vegas sees Brian and Stewie clone themselves and head to Vegas where they have completely opposite experiences from one another and last but not least, No Country Club For Old Men gets the Griffin’s into a posh country club when Christ strikes up a romance with a girl who comes from the wealthiest family around. This doesn’t sit well with Carter, who winds up getting the boot.

It’s all pretty much non-stop insanity but hey, it wouldn’t be Family Guy if there weren’t a lot of guest voices, right? Right! Popping up throughout this collection are such luminaries as Elizabeth Banks, Ryan Reynolds, Sofía Vergara, Giovanni Ribisi, Jessica Biel, Drew Barrymore, Will Sasso, Emma Roberts, J.J. Abrams, Sandra Bernhard, Cheryl Tiegs, Anne Murray, Bill Maher, Sharon Osbourne and quite a few others. And we’d be remiss not to mention the mighty Robert Loggia shows up here too. There’s a lot of fun to be had in this set so long as you go in with an open mind and remember that pretty much every one from every walk of life is fair game.

 This marks the second time a full season of the show has been released in one set (season 13 12 had the full season 11 on it). In prior years Fox, in its infinite wisdom, would release sets that had half of one season and half of another on it. It has really been a minor point because in terms of following the show, it is not like it ever has season long story arcs that need to be followed. You just have to have seen a prior episode to get a reference if they call back to something. But for those of us who do get the DVDs it has often meant paying the same price for a set with a partial season on it. So it is nice that they have come around to doing what they should have in the first place. It also makes for a pretty funny joke this season in one of the episodes.

As far as the show itself goes, it is pretty standard with what it has been doing the past few years. It can get repetitive with some of the gags (they do like vomit), but I do think they are still entertaining on a consistent enough basis to keep fans of the show entertained. This season has the controversial story line in the middle involving Brian (chances are everyone knows what it is and the cover of the DVD set basically gives it away) that definitely shook the show (and the fans) up. It also sees the return of Cleveland after the Cleveland Show’s cancellation. Like the show always has, it makes fun of pretty much any topic, and because the DVD is uncensored it replaces some of the tamer jokes from the broadcast version with harder edged versions. It is also worth noting that nothing gets bleeped out on the DVDs, so expect all the swearing to be in every episode.



For those who get the DVD set, as far as extras go, there are deleted scenes from every episode, a couple episodes showing the full animatics with the dialogue, and a short feature on the Brian storyline with show runners and Seth Green talking about the fan reaction. Pretty standard for what has been included before

This is really season 13, its the season featuring the Simpson/ Family Guy Crossover. The hour in Springfield started off in poignant, self-referential fashion, with Seth MacFarlane and co. recognizing that this was probably a “one time shot.” Cue the slew of Easter eggs and references for fans of The Simpsons, and the fan-service is appreciated for the most part. There are guest appearances from Apu (once in his natural habitat, and once as Stewie’s prisoner), and hilarious scenes with the likes of Cleveland and Quagmire meeting their Simpson counterparts.

The entire premise of this episode (an attempt to put the rumors of any Family Guy vs The Simpsons feud to rest) hinges on each show taking some low blows and wearing it’s respective heart on it’s sleeve. Whether it’s The Simpsons (or Duff Brewery’s) longevity, which invites criticism about it’s consistency, or Family Guy’s (and Pawtucket Brewery’s) questionable originality and knack for what may seem like “pale imitation,” this episode takes stabs at both parties involved. The argument begins in a bar at the start of the third act, and spirals out of control into an absurd, and probably overlong, classic chicken fight.

Other highlights in the set include,

The 2000 Year Old Virgin where Jesus shocks peter by saying that he has never had sex. Determined to change this, Peter enlists the help of Cleveland, Joe and Quagmire so Jesus can lose his virginity for his 2000th birthday.

Stewie, Chris, & Brian’s Excellent Adventure where Stewie and Brian invite Chris on a journey through time to help him pass a test that is his only hope of finishing ninth grade, and the three end up stuck in 1912 aboard the Titanic.

and of course the Fight Irish episode where Peter claims that he could beat Liam Neeson in a fight, but his skills are put to the test when Neeson himself actually shows up. Meanwhile, Stewie is annoyed with Lois when she becomes a class mom and starts paying more attention to other children.

Another classic season with great jokes and great guest stars, The Simpson Guy being the biggest highlight now we can own it on dvd

REVIEW: DONNIE DARKO

CAST

Jake Gyllenhaal (Zodiac)
Jena Malone (Saved)
Mary McDonnell (Scream 4)
Holmes Osborne (Bring It On)
Katharine Ross (Hellfighters)
Maggie Gyllenhaal (The Dark Knight)
Daveigh Chase (S.Darko)
James Duval (May)
Drew Barrymore (Poison Ivy)
Patrick Swayze (Dirty Dancing)
Noah Wyle (ER)
Beth Grant (Wonderfalls)
Fran Kranz (The Cabin In The Woods)
Seth Rogen (Paul)
Ashley Tisdale (Scary Movie 5)

On October 2, 1988, Donnie Darko (Jake Gyllenhaal), a troubled teenager living in Middlesex, Virginia, is awakened and led outside by a figure in a monstrous rabbit costume, who introduces himself as “Frank” and tells him the world will end in 28 days, 6 hours, 42 minutes, and 12 seconds. At dawn, Donnie returns home to find a jet engine has crashed into his bedroom. His older sister, Elizabeth (Maggie Gyllenhaal), informs him the FAA investigators do not know where it came from.
Donnie tells his psychotherapist, Dr. Thurman (Katharine Ross), about his continuing visits from Frank. Acting under Frank’s influence, he floods his school by damaging a water main. He also begins dating new student Gretchen Ross (Jena Malone), who has moved to town with her mother under a new identity to escape her violent stepfather. Conservative gym teacher Kitty Farmer (Beth Grant) blames the flooding on the influence of the short story “The Destructors”, assigned by dedicated liberal English teacher Karen Pomeroy (Drew Barrymore), and begins teaching attitude lessons taken from motivational speaker Jim Cunningham (Patrick Swayze). Donnie rebels against these motivational lessons, leading to friction between Kitty and Donnie’s mother Rose (Mary McDonnell).
Donnie asks his science teacher, Dr. Kenneth Monnitoff (Noah Wyle), about time travel after Frank brings up the topic, and is given the book The Philosophy of Time Travel, written by Roberta Sparrow (Patience Cleveland), a former science teacher at the school who is now a seemingly senile old woman. The book explains that time travel is possible when there is a disruption of the time continuum of the Primary Universe. The disruption creates a fragile Tangent Universe, which can only exist for a few weeks before collapsing into a black hole which will utterly destroy the Primary Universe. When a Tangent Universe is created, a metal Artifact will mysteriously appear there. It must be returned to the Primary Universe to re-establish the original time construct and dispel the danger of complete destruction. The book describes the roles of the Living Receiver, who receives Fourth Dimension powers to ensure the Artifact is returned so that the Primary Universe continues, as well as the Manipulated Living and Dead. Those who die in the Tangent Universe (the Manipulated Dead) can time travel to appear in that universe before their deaths. They must guide the Living Receiver and create an Ensurance Trap, which forces the Living Receiver to use Fourth Dimension powers and return the Artifact to the Primary Universe. Once time is restored, people will probably have no memory of what happened in the Tangent Universe, though they may have disturbing dreams. Donnie reads the book but doesn’t understand how it applies to him. (The book is available on the DVD of the film and is essential to understanding what happens and why.)
Thurman tells Donnie’s parents that he is detached from reality, and that his visions of Frank are “daylight hallucinations”, symptomatic of paranoid schizophrenia. Donnie disrupts a speech being given by Jim Cunningham by insulting him in front of the student body, then burns down Cunningham’s house on instructions from Frank. When police find evidence of a child pornography operation in the house’s remains, Cunningham is arrested. During a hypnotherapy session, Donnie confesses his crimes to Dr. Thurman and says that Frank will soon kill someone. Rose agrees to replace Kitty as chaperone for her daughter Samantha’s (Daveigh Chase) dance troupe in Los Angeles, so Kitty can testify in Cunningham’s defense; with her husband Eddie (Holmes Osborne) in New York on business, her older children are home alone.
Donnie and Elizabeth take the opportunity to throw a Halloween party to celebrate her acceptance to Harvard. Gretchen arrives, distraught that her mother has disappeared. Realizing that only hours remain before Frank’s prophesied end of the world, Donnie takes Gretchen and two friends to seek Roberta Sparrow at her house. They are attacked by two school bullies (Alex Greenwald and Seth Rogen) who are attempting to rob Sparrow’s house, and the fight spills into the street. An oncoming Pontiac Trans Am car swerves to avoid Sparrow who went for her daily walk to check her mailbox, but runs over Gretchen, killing her. The driver is Elizabeth’s boyfriend Frank (James Duval), wearing the same rabbit costume as the Frank of Donnie’s visions. Donnie shoots him in his eye with his father’s gun, killing him.
As a vortex forms in dark clouds above his house, Donnie drives into the hills and watches as an airplane descends from above. The plane, carrying Rose and the dance troupe, is wrenched violently as one of its engines detaches and falls into the vortex. Events of the previous 28 days recapitulate in reverse order and action, propelled by Donnie’s powers, until Donnie finds himself in bed in the early hours of October 2. The Ensurance Trap has worked. He sits laughing uncontrollably, knowing that his fate is to die – so that his mother, sister, Gretchen and Frank may live and the black hole will be averted. Suddenly, the jet engine (Artifact) crashes through his room, killing him – as it should have done and now does in the Primary Universe. Others with whom Donnie had interacted in the 28 Tangent World days awaken, some looking disturbed. Gretchen rides by Donnie’s house and learns of his death from a neighborhood boy (Scotty Leavenworth), but says she did not know him. Gretchen and Rose exchange a glance and wave as if they know one another, but cannot remember from where.
This is one of the best cult classics of all time which is very bizarre and complex with a great lead by Jake Gyllenhall and is Richard Kelly’s one hit wonder which has a very sad ending.

REVIEW: BRING IT ON 1,2,3,4 & 5

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CAST

Kirsten Dunst (Spider-Man)
Eliza Dushku (Tru Calling)
Jesse Bradford (Cherry Falls)
Gabrielle Union (Flashforward)
Clare Kramer (Buffy)
Nicole Bilderback (Dark Angel)
Tsianina Joelson (Xena)
Rini Bell (Road Trip)
Nathan West (The Skulls 2)
Huntley Ritter (Voodoo Academy)
Brandi Williams (Honey)
Lindsay Sloane (Sabrina: TTW)
Bianca Kajlich (Rules of Engagement)
Holmes Osborne (Anchorman)
Aloma Wright (Scrubs)
Riley Smith (24)

Torrance Shipman, a student at Rancho Carne High School in San Diego, anxiously dreams about her first day of senior year. Her boyfriend, Aaron has left for college, and her cheerleading squad, the Toros, is aiming for a sixth consecutive national title. Torrance is elected to replace the team captain, “Big Red,” who is graduating. Soon, however, teammate Carver is injured and can no longer compete. Torrance replaces her with Missy Pantone, a gymnast who recently transferred to the school with her brother Cliff, with whom Torrance develops a flirtatious friendship. While watching the Toros practice, Missy recognizes their routines from a rival squad that her previous high school used to compete against. After accusing Torrance of being a liar and stealing (and upon seeing Torrance’s angry reaction, thus realizing Torrance was completely unaware) she drives Torrance to Los Angeles, where they watch the East Compton Clovers perform routines that are virtually identical to their own team’s. Isis, the Clovers’ team captain, angrily confronts the two. Torrance learns that “Big Red” regularly attended the Clovers’ practices to videotape and steal their routines.

Isis informs Torrance of her plans to defeat the Toros at the regional and national championships, which the team has never attended due to their economic hardship. When Torrance tells the Toros about the routines, the team still votes in favor of using the current routine to win; Torrance reluctantly agrees. At the Toros’ next home game, Isis and her teammates show up and perform the Toros’ routine in front of the whole school, humiliating them. The Toros realize that they have no choice but to learn a different routine. In desperation, they employ a professional choreographer named Sparky Polastri to provide one, as suggested by Aaron. But at the Regionals, the team scheduled immediately ahead of the Toros performs the exact routine they had been practicing. The Toros have no choice but to perform the very same routine. After the debacle that ensues, Torrance speaks to a competition official and is told Polastri provided the routine to several other teams in California. As the defending champions, the Toros are nevertheless granted their place in the Finals, but Torrance is warned that a new routine will be expected. Torrance, crushed by her failure to lead the team successfully, considers quitting.

Cliff encourages and supports her, intensifying their growing attraction. Aaron, however, suggests that she is not leadership material and recommends that she step down from her position. When Cliff sees Torrance and Aaron together, he angrily severs his friendship with Torrance, to her distress. But her confidence is renewed by Cliff’s encouragement and she convinces her unhappy team to create an innovative, new routine instead. She breaks up with Aaron, realizing his infidelity and his inability to be supportive, but Cliff still refuses to forgive her. Meanwhile, the Clovers are initially unable to compete at Nationals due to financial problems. This prompts Torrance to get her dad’s company to sponsor the Clovers, but Isis rejects the money and gets her team to Nationals by appealing to a talk show host who grew up in their area. In the finals, the Toros place second, while the Clovers win. However, at the end of the movie, Torrance and Isis find respect in each other, and Cliff and Torrance share a romantic kiss.

Bring it On’ is without a doubt, sassy, funny and has bags of attitude. It’s a fun movie that spawned several sequels.

 

 

CAST

Anne Judson-Yager (Minority Report)
Bree Turner (Grimm)
Kevin Cooney (Dead Poets Society)
Faune Chambers Watkins (Epic Movie)
Bryce Johnson (Willow Creek)
Richard Lee Jackson (Saved By The Bell: The New Class)
Bethany Joy Lenz (Agents of Shield)
Holly Towne (Dumb and Dumberer)
Felicia Day (The Guild)
Joshua Gomez (Chuck)
Kelly Stables (Two and a Half Men)
Brian Patrick Wade (The Big Bang Theory)
Chris Carmack (Into The Blue 2)
Derek Richardson (Anger Management)
Geoff Stults (The Finder)

Whittier (Anne Judson-Yager) arrives at the fictional California State College hoping to join the national champion varsity cheerleading team. She meets up with her friend from cheerleading camp, Monica (Faune Chambers), and they’re both impressive at the tryouts.

Head cheerleader Tina (Bree Turner) is ready to ask them to join the team, but Greg (Bryce Johnson) goes a step further, telling Tina that Whittier will be the next head cheerleader. This angers Tina’s pal Marni (Bethany Joy Lenz), who had the position staked out, but at the urging of Dean Sebastian (Kevin Cooney), Tina goes along with the plan, taking Whittier under her wing. Whittier meets Derek (Richard Lee Jackson), a campus D.J. who immediately takes a shine to her. But Tina is very demanding and controlling. She warns Whittier that Derek is not the type of boy she should be dating. Monica is bothered by Tina’s meddling, but Whittier momentarily lets her cheerleading ambition get the better of her, and breaks it off with Derek.

Then Tina, upset with Monica’s sassy attitude, punishes her which leads to an injury and she forces Whittier to choose between her friendship and the squad. Whittier and Monica get fed up and quit Tina’s tyranny, but Whittier’s school spirit cannot be suppressed. With Monica’s help, she gathers up the outcasts from the drama club, the dance club, and other groups that have lost their funding because of the squad and forms a ragtag squad of her own, determined to battle the varsity squad for a spot at the national championship. The two teams end up competing for the spot at nationals, with Whittier’s squad ultimately winning. Afterward Whittier offers Tina a spot on her squad, which Tina refuses but ends up wanting. The film ends with Tina sucking up to Whittier and Monica, deciding she wants to be on their squad after all, while Marni comically throws a fit.

Despite not having the big budget and all star cast of the original, this sequel does a grand job and gives the first film a good run for its money. The mild language is toned down slightly more but it’s still a 12 rating presumably due to the bitchiness which is over the top fun. The film does sag a little in the middle part but it still makes great family viewing and there are more humorous moments in this and it does give more a team spirit approach as a bunch of misfits takes on the established Varsity cheerleaders.

CAST

Hayden Panettiere (Heroes)
Solange Knowles (Johnson Family Vacation)
Jake McDorman (Limitless TV)
Danielle Savre (Boogeyman 2)
Emme Rylan (General Hospital)
Cindy Chu (Coach Carter)
Giovonnie Samuels (Fatherhood)
Gustavo Carr (500 Days of Summer)
Rihanna (Battleship)
Caity Lotz (Legends of Tomorrow)

Britney Allen’s (Hayden Panettiere) living a ‘dream life’ as the cheerleading captain and girlfriend of the star quarterback of Pacific Vista High School. Her nemesis is the highly ambitious Winnie Harper. Her life changes dramatically when her father loses his job, and the family must relocate to the disadvantaged city, Crenshaw Heights, which Britney, being the “White Girl”, takes quite a while to adjust to.

She meets Camille, cheerleading captain of the Crenshaw Heights ‘Warriors’ and her friends and fellow cheerleaders, Kirresha and Leti. She also meets Jesse, a male cheerleader and the only person who is nice to her on her first day. Britney, at the urging of Winnie, has already vowed to never cheer for another team (as this would make her a ‘cheer whore’), but after being dared by Camille and Jesse to show up at the cheerleading tryouts, Britney impresses everyone with her cheerleading skills and experience. Camille, after being persuaded by her friends to “do it for the squad,” reluctantly invites her onto the squad. Britney and Jesse become close and eventually kiss.

Around this time, singer Rihanna announces a TV special where all high school cheerleading squads can compete, with the winners appearing in a music video with her and winning new computers for their school. Winnie finds out that Britney’s cheering with the Warriors and reveals this to her friends. A week later, Britney lies to Camille, telling her that she can’t cheer at the next game as she’s holding a memorial service for her dead dog; when she’s actually going to Pacific Vista’s Homecoming dance. Camille and Jesse arrive at Britney’s to offer their condolences, and when they see Britney and Brad dressed up for the dance, Camille kicks her off the squad.

At the dance, Winnie reveals to everyone that she has been sleeping with Brad behind Britney’s back causing Britney to dump him and end her friendship with Winnie, telling her that she’s “too much of a backstabber to have any real friends”. On the day of the auditions, Britney arrives at the Warriors’ bus and comes to wish them good luck. When Winnie, with the rest of her team, makes fun of the Warriors, Britney stands up to Winnie and defends them. Camille, impressed by this, lets Britney cheer with them again. Jesse, however, is still mad at her for not telling him that she had a boyfriend before they had kissed. Both of the rivaling teams show their performances. At the auditions, the two finalists are Pacific Vista and Crenshaw Heights. PV wows the audience with their routine and Camille starts getting worried. Then Britney points out that all their steps are repetitive and that they have their secret weapon: Krumping. Now dressed in streetwear instead of their regular uniforms, steps on stage during PV’s performance and begins mirroring their steps. Finally, they begin krumping, wiping PV off the stage and impressing Rihanna with their routine. After the Warrior’s performance ends, Winnie approaches Rihanna and insists that Crenshaw Heights should be disqualified (“or arrested”) for interrupting PV’s routine. This leads to an argument between Winnie and the rest of the Pacific Vista squad, during which Britney notes, “Spirit Law states that if there’s a cheer mutiny, a squad can vote to replace their captain.”

Everyone present, even Rihanna and the other performing squads, vote to replace Winnie as the Pacific Vista High cheerleading captain. Winnie protests, dismissing CH’s style as “ghetto,” to which Rihanna responds that she judges a squad by their skills and not by where they come from. Rihanna ultimately selects Crenshaw Heights as the winners, and the Pacific Vista squad (with Britney’s friend Amber as their new captain) comes forward to congratulate them. Britney and Jesse also make up, kissing backstage after their first performance. The movie ends with a made-for-movie music video of Rihanna’s “Pon de Replay” with the Crenshaw Heights squad dancing in the background.

The characters are likable, the script is great, the acting is brilliant and the finale holds up to the original. All in all, I had great fun watching this film. It’s one of the best Sequels mostly because of Hayden Panettiere of Heroes fame.

 

CAST

Ashley Benson (Spring Breakers)
Cassie Scerbo (Soccer Mom)
Michael Copon (Power Rangers Time Force)
Jennifer Tisdale (Ted Bundy)
Ashley Tisdale (Donnie Darko)

The West Coast Sharks Cheerleading Squad, led by Carson (Ashley Benson), are attending Camp Spirit-Thunder where they’re confronted by their arch-rivals, the East Coast Jets Cheerleading Squad, led by Brooke (Cassie Scerbo). Both are fierce rivals because each is the best on its respective coast; however, the Jets have beaten the Sharks at the annual Cheer Camp Championships for the previous three years in a row.

On her first day at camp, Carson meets and hits it off with Penn (Michael Copon). They trade phone numbers, neither knowing the other is a member of their arch-rival squad. When Carson eventually does find out that Penn is a Jet, she gives him up although she really likes him.

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As part of the Camp Spirit-Thunder ritual, the West Coast Sharks are given the Spirit Stick, a “special” cheerleading item that they have to guard fiercely. Carson agrees to watch the Spirit Stick when her friends leave for a poker game, but she forgets about it when Penn arrives to ask her out. They go to a nearby amusement park and spend time together, notably riding the Double Dragons (Dueling Dragons) rollercoaster at Universal’s Islands of Adventure. At this time, Penn confesses his darkest secret to Carson: he forced his team to raise money for him to go to the camp so that his father wouldn’t find out he is a cheerleader.

Carson’s friends return to her room, but find both her and the Spirit Stick missing. They search for her, eventually finding her dancing with Penn. At this time Brooke and her friends also see the duo. When the Sharks reveal that the Spirit Stick is gone, Carson accuses the Jets of sending Penn to lure her away, and she angrily announces to all, Penn’s secret. The Sharks are worried, because losing the Spirit Stick means they are “cursed.”

The Sharks decided to hold a ceremony to ask the “Cheer Gods” for forgiveness. They are interrupted when the Jets arrive, and the squads have a “cheer-rumble”. This scene is similar to the scene in West Side Story (1961 film starring Natalie Wood) in which rival gangs named the Sharks and Jets face off. The authorities arrive, and in the ensuing melee, a number of members from both teams become injured. Both squads are forced to leave the camp as neither one has enough members to compete. But before they can board their respective buses, Carson suggests to Brooke that they combine into a single squad to compete at the Cheer Camp Championship. Though reluctant at first, the squads come together as the “East-West Coast Shets,” complete with new uniforms made through patching their old uniforms together. The two teams slowly bond, while Carson works on repairing her relationship with Penn.

The Shets sneak into Camp Victory, the rival of Camp Spirit-Thunder, to scope Camp Victory’s star team, the Flamingos. After seeing their impressive performance, Carson devises a new routine, inspired by the Double Dragon ride at that amusement park. On the day of the competition, the Shets perform their routine perfectly, winning the competition outright. Carson and Penn kiss on the mat in the middle of the celebrations, and it is revealed that Camp Victory are the ones responsible for stealing the Spirit Stick. The end credits feature clips of the cast dancing “all over the world”, while the singer Ashley Tisdale, who is the sister of Jennifer Tisdale, performs her single “He Said She Said.”

his has all the initial bitchiness of the other three but has more of a storyline being more about co-operation than outright competition. The humour is still there, but its played down whilst most music features in the background rather than as a main boost to the routines. If you want a light hearted film which is a little cheesy in places but still entertains this is a good choice.

 

CAST

Christina Milian (Torque)
Rachele Brooke Smith (Iron Man 2)
Vanessa Born (Sky)
Cody Longo (Fame)
Gabrielle Dennis (Rosewood)
Meagan Holder (You Again)
Nikki SooHoo (The Lovely Bones)
David Starzyk (Veronica Mars)
Brittany Anne Pirtle (Power Rangers Samurai)

Lina Cruz is a tough, sharp-witted cheerleader from East L.A. who transfers to Malibu Vista High School after her widowed mother remarries a wealthy man. Lina not only finds herself a fish-out-of-water at her new high school, she also faces off against Avery, the snobbish and ultra-competitive All-Star cheerleading Captain who leads her own squad, ‘The Jaguars’ after the high school squad, ‘The Sea Lions’, did not vote for her to be Captain.

After Lina upsets Sky, her stepsister, she is forced to join The Sea Lions. She goes into the school stadium to check them out and finds Evan, a basketball player who is also her crush, practicing hoops. He is also Avery’s younger brother. Lina impresses Evan, and The Sea Lions vote her Captain. When Lina is Captain, Gloria, her friend from East L.A, is called to help her out. After a team member from the Sea Lions quits, Lina calls her other friend, Trey, to come and help her out. At a basketball game, the Sea Lions go on and perform, but a fall takes place, so The Jaguars, led by Avery, are there and save them from their misery. Lina calls for back up and takes the Sea Lions to an impromptu flavour school to work on their movements. She later meets Evan waiting for her there, and Victor, Gloria’s boyfriend, befriends him.The next day, Lina comes up with the idea of The Sea Lions competing in  the All Star Championship. After the team agrees to double up their practices, The Sea Lions are invited to a Rodeo Drive Divas (RDD) party. Following Sea Lion practice, Gloria and Trey are expelled when Avery goes to the principal and gets Lina in trouble for sneaking them in without approval. Lina refuses to go to the dance but is confronted by Sky. Evan takes Lina as his date to the party, where Gloria and Trey turn up. Lina and Avery proceed to have a dance off. Lina wins the dance off, and Avery tells her that she does not belong in Malibu using multiple racial slurs. Lina, angered, runs off the dance floor and outside, where Evan follows her. There she breaks up with Evan, sends for Gloria to take her back to East L.A, and quits being Captain of The Sea Lions.

There, Lina is confronted by Gloria and Trey, so she stays at Malibu and becomes Captain of The Sea Lions again. The next day at school, half of the Sea Lions squad quits because of Lina’s routines and practices. Avery and Kayla approach Lina, Christina, and Sky to tell them that they are dreaming if they think they have a chance at winning the Spirit Championship. Sky loses her temper and tells them to back off, otherwise a fight would start.

Lina then goes on a field trip to East L.A with the remaining Sea Lions, where Gloria has persuaded a gym to sponsor the Sea Lions and some of the members of The East L.A. Rough Riders as an All Star squad. By combining the Sea Lions and the Rough Riders, they become The Dream Team. The next day after practice, while Lina is at her locker talking with Sky and Christina, Evan kisses her and tells her exactly how he feels in front of a crowd in the hallway that is recording the entire scene. They get back together, and Lina and her team make it to the final round of the All Star Championship and end up defeating The Jaguars, after which Avery breaks down. Evan comforts her but motions a “call me” signal to Lina over Avery’s shoulder. The film ends with Lina taking a picture with Trey, Gloria and Sky, claiming all of them as her cheer sisters.

Of all the `Bring it On’ films this probably has the most developed story but it is highly predicable and mimicks many of the earlier films, but it’s still light and entertaining. The acting is good and the characters are more developed in this although they are over the top as you’d expect from this series. Of all, this is probably the most family friendly of the lot, but like the others it’s still a 12 rating probably due to the fact it uses a number of racial slurs to highlight the cultural difference. There are plenty of dance routines to keep the interest .