REVIEW: 8MM 2

CAST

Jonathan Schaech (Legends of Tomorrow)
Lori Heuring (Just Go With It)
Bruce Davison (X-Men)
Julie Benz (Angel)
Zita Görög (Underworld)
Valentine Pelka (The Pianist)
Robert Cavanah (Highlander: The Raven)
Alex Scarlis (American Heiress)
Lili Bordán (The Nun)

An engaged couple, Tish and David (Heuring and Schaech), take a short vacation to Budapest. David is counsel to Tish’s father, an ambassador who does not approve of their relationship, although this does not affect the couple’s relationship. While in Budapest, the two indulge in many sexual activities, eventually engaging in a threesome with a local model named Risa, in a hotel in Alhambra. The sexual tryst becomes a personal issue when they receive a letter containing pictures of the ménage à trois. Realizing this escapade could ruin their careers, as well as the career of Tish’s father, they venture deep into Budapest to find Risa. On their journey, they encounter their blackmailer, the housekeeper of the hotel, who told them about Risa.8mm2f_stl_6_hHe demands a sum of $200,000 for the pictures he took, and takes Tish hostage before running off, though he eventually lets her go. The blackmailer encounters David and the men begin firing at each other, but the blackmailer escapes. Going into his apartment, they find the man shot dead. A police officer, detective Kovač, later contacts them and seems to suspect them of murdering the man. Later on they find Risa dead in her apartment and presume the entire ordeal is over. Just as they begin to celebrate, another mysterious man calls them and demands $1,000,000 in exchange for the pictures, which they agree to pay through Tish’s contacts and with the help of Kovač. They arrange to meet at an old warehouse, but they do not see the man when they get there.8mm5

David tells Tish to stay in the car while he goes looking for the man inside, handing her a gun. After he disappears into the warehouse, Kovač (who had been following them) appears at Tish’s side of the car and knocks on the window. She informs him that the man said there should be no police, but Kovač tells her that if she wants to see David leave the building alive, she must let him go. After a while Tish hears gunfire and runs into the building, shooting at an SUV which is exiting the warehouse. She then finds Kovač dead inside. Later the mysterious man calls her again and says he has David, and demands a sum of $5,000,000 for his safe return, otherwise he will kill him. She agrees and pays the money.

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The man informs her that David is tied up and dying in the basement of a store in Budapest. When Tish locates it, she discovers David tied up in the basement, with limited oxygen being fed to him via a mask. She frees him, and they thereafter continue their lives together, without any further interference from the man. On Christmas, Tish and her siblings go shopping in the city, and plan on going for a drink with David, however he calls Tish and informs her he will be working late. Tish decides she will continue shopping and meet David at home. When she boards a subway train in the evening, she notices in the train-car on the rails next to hers, the porn-store owner David knows, a Russian pimp she had tried to work for, Risa, Kovač, and the hotel’s housekeeper. They are smiling as David enters the train-car to join them, and it is made clear to Tish that they plotted everything to get their hands on the $6,000,000 she had given them throughout the events. As the train pulls away, David notices that Tish has seen him and the whole gang.image-w856Not a bad movie , although it has no relation to the original 8mm movie. This movie was originally named The Velvet side of hell. Until Sony pictures acquired it and renamed it . This movie has a twist some could expect but most wont I think. All in all it is worth a watch.

REVIEW: ON BECOMING A GOD IN CENTRAL FLORIDA – SEASON 1

Kirsten Dunst in On Becoming a God in Central Florida (2019)

Starring

Kirsten Dunst (Spider-Man)
Théodore Pellerin (Family FIrst)
Mel Rodriguez (Better Call Saul)
Beth Ditto (Nocturnal Animals)
Ted Levine (The Silence of The Lambs)

Kirsten Dunst in On Becoming a God in Central Florida (2019)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Alexander Skarsgård (Straw Dogs)
Usman Ally (Star Trek Into Darkness)
Julie Benz (Angel)
Melissa De Sousa (One on One)
Sharon Lawrence (Solace)
Mary Steenburgen (Elf)
Josh Fadem (Better Call Saul)
Kevin J. O’Connor (Widows)
Billy Slaughter (Focus)
David Paymer (Drag Me To Hell)
Shari Headley (Goosebumps 2)
John Earl Jelks (True Detective)
Da’Vine Joy Randolph (Office Christmas Party)
Eric Allan Kramer (Mike & Molly)
Cooper Jack Rubin (Cold Moon)
Lois Smith (Lady Bird)

Kirsten Dunst in On Becoming a God in Central Florida (2019)“On Becoming a God in Central Florida” is such a clever, compelling, and thorough evisceration of American capitalism it’s shocking Elizabeth Warren isn’t listed as an executive producer. Created by Robert Funke and Matt Lutsky, Showtime’s new hourlong black comedy does feature a few well-known progressive producers in EPs George Clooney and Grant Heslov, but the ’90s-set story of lower-middle class Floridians put to ruin by a pyramid scheme isn’t solely a political statement; it chronicles a tragedy in action, as the promise of the American dream is ripped away from those who believe in it — and need it — the most. Like any great satire, you won’t be able to tell if you’re laughing so hard it hurts, or if you’ve just been punched in the gut.Kirsten Dunst and Théodore Pellerin in On Becoming a God in Central Florida (2019)The awesome Kirsten Dunst (also an EP) is the story here, bringing a captivating vitality and unflinching veracity to her lead character, Krystal Stubbs. A the beginning, however, the starry-eyed dreamer is embodied by none other than a mullet-sporting, profusely sweaty (like, Justin Theroux-level sweaty), and stunningly unfashionable Alexander Skarsgård. Travis Stubbs, husband to Krystal, is a frustrated insurance salesman who’s become discontented with his one-story house, compact car, and average lifestyle. His wife clocks in and out at the local water park while he slaves away at two jobs: his nine-to-five desk gig and spearheading his own company — well, not exactly his own company.Kirsten Dunst in On Becoming a God in Central Florida (2019)Though his FAM brethren would remind Travis he’s absolutely his own boss, the tall, lanky, former football star still spends his nights making door-to-door deliveries, stocking boxes in his garage, or recruiting new “downlines” — aka “independent contractors” who give part of their profits to Travis, who in turns gives part of his cut to his “upline,” and so on and so forth. They’re all hocking Founders American Merchandise, which is, of course, a pyramid scheme. It’s a cultish, multibillion-dollar pyramid scheme, but a pyramid scheme nonetheless. Sitting at the top is Obie Garbeau II (Ted Levine), a mustachioed millionaire whose deep voice fills the motivational tapes his FAM family is required to purchase. Obie is only accessible to those Jefferson-level members, and only then via crowded retreats where each FAM couple does a song and dance in the hopes of five minutes with the company founder.Kirsten Dunst in On Becoming a God in Central Florida (2019)If that sounds like a lot for anyone to take, rest assured the series depicts the obsessive fandom surrounding Obie quite well, illustrating a thorough and convincing mass brainwashing where there’s an answer to every question and an encouragement for every doubt. Even those who’ve avoided recruitment have a hard time keeping their brains from dreaming of the rewards these hucksters promise, in part because their enthusiasm is otherworldly. The most convincing member is Travis’ own upline, Cody (Théodore Pellerin), whose fanatical fandom over Obie and FAM is like seeing a DCEU Twitter troll spring to life: He’s so thoroughly bought into a sham, and yet he’s so impossibly joyous about his own gullibility.Kirsten Dunst in On Becoming a God in Central Florida (2019)Pellerin’s conviction is thrilling to behold, especially considering how much intensity he has to bring to each layer of Cody’s fragile psyche, just to keep his baseline state as a jubilant con man believable. The cast overall is working at a top level, with Skarsgård operating miles away from his Emmy-winning smooth talker on “Big Little Lies” and Mel Rodriguez mining new depths as the lovable, good-hearted family man audiences got to know in “The Last Man on Earth.” But this is Dunst’s series. From the start, you can tell there’s something special about her and Krystal; the latter doesn’t take any of Cody’s bullshit. She’s not some doting wife, worried about her husband’s work ethic while turning a blind (or oblivious) eye to the Sisyphean mountain he’s trying to climb. Krystal sees things clearly. She values what they already have and is trying to hold her family together while raising a newborn and making minimum wage. She speaks to Travis clearly and forcefully, telling him what he needs to hear in the only way he might be able to listen.Kirsten Dunst in On Becoming a God in Central Florida (2019)At one point in the premiere, Krystal says, “I will not be poor again,” and Dunst emphasizes the line so clearly, it defines her backstory and sets her path forward. You understand Krystal then, so that each choice that follows makes perfect sense. There are times when Dunst flaunts unexpected emotional nuance that deepens our ties to Krystal — in how she skins an alligator, for instance, or when she unveils a former, unparalleled dance routine — but the true power of her turn comes in how the actor is able to make the audience relate to Krystal as anyone and everyone. The fear of an indebted life — one controlled by lenders, collectors, and powerful institutions you can’t even put a face to — that’s a real fear, and Dunst acknowledges the trepidation while fighting tooth and nail against it every second of the way.Kirsten Dunst in On Becoming a God in Central Florida (2019)Set against the absurd splendor of the southeastern Sunshine State, “On Becoming a God in Central Florida” squeezes quite a bit of creative juice out of this particular orange. The locales are lively yet unexaggerated; the cast is quirky yet never to the point of distraction; the arcs are peculiar — at one point, a man wrestles a giant pelican with his bare hands — and yet they make a lot of sense as they’re happening. In that way, the series can resemble the very pyramid scheme its critiquing, but this story never feels like a lie. You don’t have to be well-acquainted with Florida, or to have just watched “The Florida Project” to see a struggling working class in this country.Kirsten Dunst in On Becoming a God in Central Florida (2019)Through some savvy narrative maneuvering, “On Becoming a God” connects the charlatans and con men of FAM to politicians, corporate overlords, and America’s 1 percent, as well — all the wealthy people up top, only working to keep their downlines in service. Showtime’s strong new series never forgets about the individuals who still think America is working for them, nor does it treat them with disdain. “Central Florida” understands how attractive the offer can look, and punches up at the liars instead of down at anyone eager to buy in. The surroundings might be pink and shiny, but the good folks like Krystal Stubbs, with their noses forever pressed to window of their dream home, are as real as they come. If only someone had a plan to fix things for ’em…

REVIEW: SHRIEK IF YOU KNOW WHAT I DID LAST FRIDAY THE 13TH

CAST
Harley Cross (Kinsey)
Majandra Delfino (Roswell)
Tiffani Thiessen  (White Collar)
Simon Rex (Scary Movie 3,4 & 5)
Shirley Jones (The Partridge Family)
Aimee Graham (Jackie Brown)
Coolio (Batman & Robin)
Tom Arnold (True Lies)
Kim Greist (Chicago Hope)
Chris Palermo (Man of Steel)
Danny Strong (Buffy: The Vampire Slayer)
Julie Benz (Angel)
Rose Marie (The DIck Van Dyke Show)
David Herman (Futurama)
Alanna Ubach (Waiting..)
Steven Anthony Lawrence  (The Cat In The Hat)
Artie Lange (ELF)
Ryan Francis (Hook)

51JEV4TYCQLWhile in her house alone dimwitted teenager Harvey “Screw” McAlister (Aimee Graham) is attacked by “The Killer”. While being chased, Screw accidentally runs into a bug zapper and her face gets electrocuted. The killer, feeling disappointed that he was not the cause of her death, lights up a cigarette, leading to the melting of his Jason Voorhees mask into a Scream mask. The next day, new kid Dawson Deery (Harley Cross) signs up at Bulimia Falls High School, meeting up with a new group of friends including Boner (Danny Strong), Slab (Simon Rex), Barbara (Julie Benz) and Martina (Majandra Delfino), to whom Dawson takes a liking, though he is not sure if she is a lesbian. While the group discusses the death of Screw, they remain certain they are safe in school, not noticing the chaos that surrounds them, including a nuclear bomb being built and the killer attempting to murder a student.

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The group encounters EmpTV News reporter Hagitha Utslay (Tiffani-Amber Thiessen), who is covering a series of murders, having already written a best-selling pop-up book about them, and accuses Dawson as the killer. They then meet Barbara’s brother Doughy (Tom Arnold), an inept security guard who recently lost his job patrolling a shopping mall and is working to find the killer; however, he believes Screw’s death was a harmless prank. As the group talks, they do not notice Hagitha’s cameraman being murdered. As the day progresses, more and more students are murdered. While in class, each of the group receives a letter from the killer, revealing he knows a secret about them. Each of the group recalls a time when they were drunk-driving and hit a deer, before dumping it in the sea. 630full-shriek-if-you-know-what-i-did-last-friday-the-13th-screenshot

This event leads each to keep their own secrets; Martina not giving her grandmother laxatives, Boner accidentally causing his brother to be killed in prison, Slab smoking his uncle’s ashes, and Barbara accidentally removing the “do not remove tag” from a mattress. Meanwhile, Hagitha and Doughy continuously flirt with each other. As the group meets up, Dawson gets a letter too, as he was in fact run over by the others while dressed up in a deer costume when a hillbilly forced him to wear it and do salt lick. The hillbilly died in the explosion. The group decides they should spend the night in a secluded house, so they each arrange to go to Slab’s after school. As the day progresses, each of the group members are attacked but manage to escape. The killer confronts Principal Interest (Coolio), but he electrocutes himself in a bathtub.51W3FHSSB7LAt night, everyone goes to Slab’s party. Boner takes an unconscious girl up to a bedroom so he can lose his virginity. The killer attacks him, but Boner suffers a heart attack before the killer can murder him. Martina goes over the rules of a parody movie, before Barbara is chased outside by the killer. However, Barbara suffers an allergic reaction to bee stings before the killer can murder her. As the rest of the party people leave, Martina makes a move on Dawson, before they find Slab has abused steroids, causing him to explode. Martina and Dawson then are chased by the killer, as Hagitha and Doughy play strip poker nearby instead of investigating the murders. Martina and Dawson defeat the killer as Hagitha and Doughy arrive. The killer is revealed as Hardy, Doughy’s “evil twin cousin”, whom Doughy is going to let get away with the murders, but Hagitha accidentally shoots Hardy before leaving Doughy for a pizza boy. Martina, Dawson and Doughy leave the house, where they find Boner is still alive and finally loses his virginity to a nurse. As Martina and Dawson leave, they get a call from a new killer.Shriek02This film is a very funny and, I must say, silly (but what spoof isn’t silly, that’s the whole point) spoof horror.  I enjoyed the gags and stupidness of the film. A movie to see when bored or you just feel like you need a bit of stupidness.

REVIEW: AS GOOD AS IT GETS

CAST

Jack Nicholson (Batman)
Helen Hunt (What Women Want)
Greg Kinnear (Movie 43)
Cuba Gooding Jr. (Boat Trip)
Skeet Ulrich (Scream)
Shirley Knight (Paul Blart: Mall Cop)
Yeardley Smith (The Simpsons)
Brian Doyle- Murray (Groundhog Day)
Missi Pyle (The Artist)
Jamie Kennedy (Son of The Mask)
Maya Rudolph (Bridesmaids)
Kathryn Morris (Cold Case)
Julie Benz (Angel)
Harold Raimis (Ghostbusters)
Maurice LaMarche (Futurama)
Leslie Stefanson (Unbreakable)
Tara Subkoff (The Cell)
Lisa Edelstein (House)
Jesse James (The Butterfly Effect)

jack-nicholson-as-good-as-it-gets-1997Melvin Udall is a misanthrope who works at home as a best-selling novelist in New York City. He suffers from obsessive-compulsive disorder which, paired with his misanthropy, alienates nearly everyone with whom he interacts. He avoids stepping on sidewalk cracks while walking through the city due to a superstition of bad luck, and eats breakfast at the same table in the same restaurant every day using disposable plastic utensils he brings with him due to his pathological fear of germs. He takes an interest in his waitress, Carol Connelly, the only server at the restaurant who can tolerate his behavior.maxresdefaultOne day, Melvin’s apartment neighbor, a gay artist named Simon Bishop, is assaulted and nearly killed during a robbery. Melvin is intimidated by Simon’s agent, Frank Sachs, into caring for Simon’s dog, Verdell, while Simon is hospitalized. Although he initially does not enjoy caring for the dog, Melvin becomes emotionally attached to it. He simultaneously receives more attention from Carol. When Simon is released from the hospital, Melvin is unable to cope emotionally with returning the dog. Melvin’s life is further altered when Carol decides to work closer to her home in Brooklyn so she can care for her acutely asthmatic son Spencer (“Spence”). Unable to adjust to another waitress, Melvin arranges through his publisher, whose husband is a doctor, to pay for her son’s considerable medical expenses as long as Carol agrees to return to work. She is overwhelmed at his generosity, and they agree there will be no physical relationship.
4881_4_screenshotMeanwhile, Simon’s assault and rehabilitation, coupled with Verdell’s preference for Melvin, causes Simon to lose his creative muse. Simon is approaching bankruptcy due to his medical bills. Frank convinces him to go to Baltimore to ask his estranged parents for money. Because Frank is too busy to take the injured Simon to Baltimore himself, Melvin reluctantly agrees to do so – Frank lends Melvin the use of his Saab 900 convertible for the trip. Melvin invites Carol to accompany them on the trip to lessen the awkwardness. She reluctantly accepts the invitation, and relationships among the three develop.
as-good-as-it-gets-1997Once in Baltimore, Carol persuades Melvin to take her out to have dinner. Melvin’s comments during the dinner greatly flatter—and subsequently upset—Carol, and she abruptly leaves. Upon seeing the frustrated Carol, Simon begins to sketch her semi-nude in his hotel room and rekindles his creativity, once more feeling a desire to paint. He briefly reconnects with his parents, but is able to tell them that he’ll be fine. After returning to New York, Carol tells Melvin that she does not want him in her life anymore. She later regrets her statement and calls him to apologize. The relationship between Melvin and Carol remains complicated until Simon (whom Melvin has allowed to move in with him until he can fully heal from his injuries and get a new apartment) convinces Melvin to declare his love for her. Melvin goes to see Carol, who is hesitant, but agrees to try and establish a relationship with him. The film ends with Melvin and Carol walking together. As he opens the door at an early morning pastry shop for Carol, he realizes that he has stepped on a crack in the pavement, but doesn’t seem to mind.as_good_as_it_getsDirection is first rate, Brooks made Terms of Endearment so it’s well established that he’s quite capable of making great films. As Good As It Gets is very nearly as good it gets.

REVIEW: TAKEN (2002)

CAST

Dakota Fanning (War of The Worlds)
Eric Close (American Sniper)
Catherine Dent (Terminator: TSCC)
Joel Gretsch (V)
John Hawkes (Winter’s Bone)
Tine Holmes (Half Nelson)
Steve Burton (Cyber Tracker)
Julie Benz (Angel)
Stacy Grant (Shanghai Noon)
Jason Gray-Stanford (Bones)
Michael Moriarty (Courage Under Fire)
Rob LaBelle (Jack Frost)
Julie Ann Emery (Fargo)
Adam Kaufman (Buffy: The Vampire Slayer)
James McDaniel (Sleepy Hollow)
Ian Tracey (Bates Motel)
Ryan Robbins (Arrow)
Willie Garson (Stargate SG.1)
Ryan Hurst (Bates Motel)
James Kirk (X-Men 2)
Anton Yelchin (Star Trek)
Kevin Durand (X-Men Origins)
Brenda James (Slither)
Chad Morgan (The Purge: Anarchy)
Jonathan Young (Sanctuary)
Ryan Merriman (Final Destination 3)
Brent Stait (Andromeda)
Emily Holmes (The Wicker Man)
Erin Karpluk (Being Erica)
David Paetkau (Flashpoint)
Fulvio Cecere (Valentine)
Jim Byrnes (Highlander: The Series)
Matt Frewer (Watchmen)
Desmond Harrington (Ghost Ship)
Alessandro Juliani (Smallville)
Emily Bergl (Carrie 2)
Britt Irvin (V)
Camille Sullivan (The Birdwatcher)
Ben Cotton (Stargate: Atlantis)
Elle Fanning (Super 8)
Gabrielle Rose (Dark Angel)
Roger Cross (Arrow)
Brian Markinson (Izombie)
Colleen Winton (Van Helsing)
Peter Bryant (Legends of Tomorrow)
Justin Chatwin (Taking Lives)
Gwynyth Walsh (Van Helsing)
Heather Donahue (The Blair Witch Project)
Malcolm Stewart (Jumanji)
Connor Widdows (Battlestar Galactica)
Laurie Murdoch (Spotlight)
Enid-Raye Adams (Good Boys)
Andrew Jackson (Sea Wolf)
Mark Hildreth (V)
Patrick Gallagher (Glee)
Aaron Pearl (Lost In Space)
Nolan Gerard Funk (Truth or Dare)
Kurt Evans (Izombie)
Terry Chen (Jessica Jones)
Frederick Koehler (Death Race)
Sarah-Jane Redmond (Smallville)
Jay Brazeau (Bates Motel)
Matthew Walker (Highlander: The Series)
Devin Douglas Drewitz ( I Love You, Beth Cooper)
Kendall Cross (Caprica)
Bill Marchant (Stargate SG.1)
Eileen Pedde (Juno)
Don Thompson (Watchmen)

From none other than visionary Steven Spielberg comes TAKEN (2002), which I first saw during it’s initial run on the BBC. I admire the scope, ambition, and emotion attached to this entertaining mini series.It starts off in 1944, with Russell Keys, along with his bomber crew, being ‘taken’ by an alien spacecraft during their WWII mission. The crew is experimented on, but Keys is essentially the lone survivor. Keys returns home with PTSD, not due to war, but due to the alien experience. This compels him to leave his wife and child to solve the mystery. Eventually, the aliens take Russell’s teen son Jesse Keys. The aliens obviously see an internal resolve in the Keys’ men that distinguishes them from the rest of the human race.
A second parallel story starts around 1947, and involves the lone survivor of a downed alien spacecraft that manages to take human form as “John” , who seeks refuge on a Texas farm owned by Sally Clarke, a hard-working waitress and single mother of two. John and Sally bond and she is impregnated, leading to a human-alien hybrid Jacob Clarke (superbly played by then-newcomer Anton Yelchin, now known for being the new Chekhov in the re-booted Star Trek franchise).The final parallel story also starts in 1947 in the infamous Roswell, New Mexico, where the local Air Force has found John’s downed ship and his 4 alien compadres who did not survive. Backed by the government, the military takes over the super-secret project, which starts off being briefly led by Colonel Campbell and is soon taken over by his ambitious son-in-law Captain Owen Crawford (brilliantly played by Joel Gretsch), military intelligence officer. Gretsch perfectly essays the role of megalomaniacal Crawford, who runs the project with unapologetic brio. I really felt that Gretsch’s character carried the first few episodes (spanning 1947 to 1962) with strong support from the other actors.
Taken’s first half  storytelling is strong, a perfect balance of science fiction, politics, speculation, and drama. One really buys into the premise that these goings-on could have actually happened. It’s definitely not fiction that many an American have reported UFO sightings and alien experiences over the years, and this miniseries is one of the better attempts at relaying this message to the viewer.
With the second half of the mini series the puzzle pieces finally start to come together to an interesting conclusion. Emily Burgl (as Lisa Clarke) and Andy Kaufman (as Charlie Keys) were commendable as the adult versions of the last respective offspring of the Clarke-Keys clans, the main highlight of the second half was  was the performance of newcomer Dakota Fanning (who plays Allie) whose wonderful narration is a key to the series overall success. She stole the show from all of her adult counterparts. I would definitely recommend the miniseries based on ambition and overall scope and the tightly woven storytellingthe show demonstrates. It’s an epic Sci-Fi story that is intriguing and at times touching. It wasthe series that made Dakota Fanning a star.

REVIEW: BAD GIRLS FROM VALLEY HIGH

 

CAST

Julie Benz (Angel)
Nicole Bilderback (Dark Angel)
Monica Keena (Freddy vs Jason)
Chris D’Elia (Undateable)
Jonathan Brandis (Seaquest)
Christopher Lloyd (Piranha)
Janet Leigh (Psycho)

Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad)
Tanja Reichert (Relic Hunter)

valley_high_07Danielle is the leader of a clique of arrogant, mean high school girls; she and her rich friends Tiffany and Brooke care only about their pampered selves (although Brooke has periodic misgivings). No one really hangs out with them except a dumb jock named Gavin, and the class nerd Jonathan, and poor Danielle is getting nowhere with the popular guy Drew, even after she and friends accidentally killed his last girlfriend. It’s been a year, and Drew still ignores her – but he doesn’t ignore the new foreign exchange student Katarina. Since Katarina can’t take a hint, Danielle begins plotting her downfall. But there’s a slight problem: Danielle and her friends begin experiencing a level of high weirdness in which all three of them rapidly age. This serves to make Danielle more desperate than ever. She’ll sacrifice anything, even Drew, to get her youth and looks back.Although released to video in 2005, “Bad Girls From Valley High” was actually shot in 1999 and shelved because of Jonathan Brandis Suicide  It’s too bad this movie fell into obscurity because it works well for what it is. It’s got the pizazz and quirkiness this type of film requires and a number of laugh-out-loud scenes, plus there’s no unnecessary raunch or general obnoxiousness, except of course for the main “Hun” girl (Benz). Tanja Reichert is a highlight, but she appears so briefly she’s almost not worth mentioning; and Keena is a cutie but they don’t do enough with her. But Lloyd is his usual entertaining self. Brandis would commit suicide four years later and Leigh would pass away in five.

REVIEW: JAWBREAKER

CAST
Rose McGowan (Planet Terror)
Rebecca Gayheart (Urban Legend)
Julie Benz (No Ordinary Family)
Judy Greer (Jurassic World)
Chad Christ (Gattaca)
Ethan Erickson (Buffy: The Vampire Slayer)
Tatyana Ali (Kiss The Girls)
Charlotte Ayanna (Training Day)
Jeff Conaway (Babylon 5)
William Katt (Super)
P.J. Soles (Halloween)
Marilyn Manson (Sons of Anarchy)
Carol Kane (Gotham)
Pam Grier (Jackie Brown)
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The “Flawless Four” are the most beautiful and popular girls in Reagan High School in Los Angeles. The clique consists of Courtney Shayne (Rose McGowan), Marcie Fox (Julie Benz), Julie Freeman (Rebecca Gayheart), and Elizabeth Purr (Charlotte Ayanna), the “Princess Di of Reagan High.” Of the four, only Liz is genuinely kind-hearted to everybody regardless of their social rankings and loved by the entire school; Julie was popular because of her beauty and being best friends with Liz, while cold-blooded queen bee Courtney and her airheaded right-hand girl, Marcie, demanded respect through terror. Courtney, Marcie, and Julie decide to play a mindless prank on Liz the morning of her 17th birthday, by performing a fake kidnapping. They surprise Liz in bed, bind her with ropes, and Courtney rams a jawbreaker into her mouth to gag her, before sealing her mouth with duct tape. The girls then lock Liz in the trunk of a car and drive off, actually planning to take her to a restaurant for breakfast. Upon opening the trunk, however, they are greeted with the grisly sight of Liz dead, having choked on the jawbreaker.
Julie wants to go to the police, but Courtney forbids her. Courtney calls the school pretending to be Liz’s mother and tells them Liz is ill and cannot attend school, then the three go to school as though nothing had happened. When Principal Sherwood (Carol Kane) sends school outcast and ardent admirer of Liz, Fern Mayo (Judy Greer), to deliver Liz’s homework at the end of the day, she stumbles upon the three girls and Liz’s mangled body. Out of jealousy, Courtney fabricates an elaborate story that Liz died at the hands of a rapist, and plots to tarnish Liz’s good reputation by spreading false rumors that she was actually a rebellious, promiscuous girl, who drank and did drugs and was not the perfect angel she made herself out to be.
Fern, who had hero-worshipped Liz, attempts to flee the house. The girls catch her and Courtney buys her silence by accepting her into the clique, telling her to take Liz’s place, despite Julie’s protests. Courtney and Marcie give Fern a makeover, transforming her from plain and awkward to elegant and beautiful. The transformation is so complete, Courtney introduces Fern as the beautiful exchange student “Vylette”.
Julie, overwhelmed by guilt at her part in Liz’s death, breaks away from the clique, only to be tormented by her former friends, and as her popularity dissolves, she becomes a new target for abuse and contempt throughout the school. Her only real friend during this time is her boyfriend and drama student, Zack. As Vylette’s popularity soars, Julie watches in silence as Courtney spins an endless web of lies to cover up the murder and maintain her popularity. Julie threatens to go to the police and tell them the truth, but Courtney retorts that she, Marcie, and now Vylette will claim Julie killed Liz if she attempts to expose them. To her disgust, Julie learns that, after they had returned Liz’s corpse to her house, Courtney went out that same night and seduced a stranger (Marilyn Manson) at a sleazy bar and had sex with him in Liz’s bed, making it seem as though he had raped Liz.
Vylette becomes intoxicated with her new-found popularity, which has eclipsed Courtney’s own. Courtney orders Vylette to learn her place, but Vylette vows that if Courtney does not watch her step, then she will reveal the truth behind Liz’s death. In response, Courtney and Marcie post enlarged yearbook photos of Fern Mayo all over the school with the message “Who is Vylette” written on them, revealing Vylette’s true identity and leaving her humiliated by the entire school. Julie takes pity on Fern and forgives her for being corrupted by Courtney.
Feeling no remorse for the lives she has destroyed, the heartless Courtney attends the senior prom with jock Dane Sanders (Ethan Erickson), Julie is at home going through a bag of Liz’s belongings that were given to her. Upon finding a recordable greeting card she was fiddling with when Courtney was faking Liz’s death scene, Julie discovers it has recorded Courtney’s admission to the killing. Armed with this evidence, Julie, Fern and Zack hurry to the prom.
When Dane and Courtney are announced as Prom King and Queen, Zack sneaks backstage and broadcasts the card’s message over the sound system. Disgusted, Dane quickly abandons Courtney while Marcie hides under a table. Horrified that her scheme has unraveled, Courtney tearfully races for the exit as the rest of the furious students pelt her with corsages and call her a murderer. Julie snaps a picture of her former friend’s anguished face to immortalize the occasion. As Courtney’s photo ends up in the yearbook, the film closes with one of Fern Mayo’s quotes to Detective Vera Cruz: “This is high school, Detective Cruz. What is a friend, anyway?”
A sweet and sour brightly packaged look at youth-filled America where the ugly resonates just as strongly underneath, where fitting into something horrible is everything to survive high school, and that certainly is true of much of America. A great dark comedy not to be missed.

REVIEW: NO ORDINARY FAMILY

MAIN CAST
Michael Chikilis (Gotham)
Julie Benz (Angel)
Kay Panabaker (Two and a Half Men)
Jimmy Bennett (The Amityville Horror)
Autumn Reeser (Human Target)
Romany Malco (Blades of Glary)
Stephen Collins (Star Trek: The Motion Picture)
Michael Chiklis in No Ordinary Family (2010)
RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST
Christina Chang (28 Days)
Tate Donovan (Argo)
Jamie Harris (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)
Josh Stewart (The Dark Knight Rises)
Jason Antoon (Minority Report)
Reggie Lee (Drag Me To Hell)
Joanna Walsh (Faster)
Guillermo Diaz (The Terminal)
Jonathan Adams (Bones)
Rachel Miner (The Butterfly Effect 3)
Max Greenfield (New Girls)
Amy Gumenick (Arrow)
Jackson Rathbone (Twilight)
Cybill Shepherd (Moonlighting)
Bruce McGill (Collateral)
Amy Acker (Dollhouse)
Mimi Kennedy (Mom)
Connor Leslie (Titans)
Katelyn Tarver (Dead on Campus)
Annie Wersching (The Vampire Diaries)
Jason Wiles (Zodiac)
Luke Kleintank (Bones)
Rebecca Mader (Lost)
Joanne Kelly (Mutant X)
Katrina Begin (Zookeeper)
Betsy Brandt (Breaking Bad)
Ethan Suplee (My Name Is Earl)
Anthony Michael Hall (The Dead Zone)
Tricia Helfer (Battlestar Galactica)
Eric Balfour (Skyline)
Lucy Lawless (Ash vs Evil Dead)
Robert Picardo (Star Trek: Voyager)
Michael Maize (Eagle Eye)
Tom Amandes (Arrow)
Jonathan Adams (Bones)
Nadine Crocker (Cabin Fever)
James Earl (Scream Queens)
Jonna Walsh (Couples Retreat)
Shaun Parkes (The Mummy Returns)
Mercedes Colon (The Fosters)
Raphael Sbarge (Risky Business)
John Rubinstein (Angel)

The Powells are a typical American family living in fictional Pacific Bay, California, whose members gain special powers after their plane crashes in the Amazon. The show is very light hearted and manages to mix comedy with action and drama extremely well. The family are quite cliché and the powers aren’t exactly ‘original’ but they make it work.The cast do a great job portraying their characters, Michael Chiklis (Star of The Shield and Fantastic Four) does a brilliant job as the father while Julie Benz (formerly Rita Morgan in Dexter) puts on a strong performance as the mother of the family. You also have Kay Panabaker and Jimmy Bennett as the kids.

The character development in this series is great and the story is  highly entertaining. The characters relationships are believable and very engrossing. I think the pairing of Jim Powell (Michael Chiklis) and George St. Cloud (Romany Malco) is brilliant. The second prize for most hilarious character in this show has to go to Stephanie Powells best friend and work colleague Katie Andrews (Played by Autumn Reeser), she is incredibly geeky and so socially awkward, hilarious to watch.no-ordinary-familyIt’s light hearted, fun and easy to watch. Yes it has the sci-fi/fantasy element to it which is akin to shows like Chuck, Heroes, Supernatural, Buffy, Smallville etc. But it also has a more family oriented feel to it at times and what this show does brilliantly is applying super powers to every day events. A lot of people have been comparing it heroes but I find it far to light hearted to be compared to heroes. It’s nowhere near as dark and serious and has far more comedy integrated throughout. I’d say it’s more like Chuck than Heroes. It was cancelled after only 1 season but still its very much worth a watch.

REVIEW: PUNISHER: WAR ZONE

CAST

Ray Stevenson (Divergent)
Dominic West (300)
Julie Benz Angel)
Colin Salmon (Arrow)
Doug Hutchison (Shaft)
Dash Mihok (Gotham)
Wayne Knight (3rd Rock From The Sun)
T.J. Storm (VR Troopers)
Keram Malicki-Sánchez (Texas Chainsaw)

MV5BMTMyNDYxMzAxNF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwOTMwNDQwMg@@._V1_The film follows Frank Castle (Ray Stevenson), a man who was out for a picnic with his wife and son one day and who happened to witness a mob hit. The mob, never pleased with events like this, opened fire on the Castle family and sent all but Frank to their graves. With nothing else to live for, Frank decides to arm himself to the teeth and with the help of his friend and weapons supplier, Microchip (Wayne Knight), wage a war on crime. Taking care of the criminals who fall through the cracks of the legal system, Castle’s managed to accumulate a pretty massive body count, but the N.Y.P.D. tends to turn a blind eye to his activities until one night Castle accidently kills Nicky Donatelli (Romano Orzari), an undercover F.B.I. agent trying to infiltrate the gang run by Billy Russoti (Dominic West).When the feds learn that Castle has killed one of their own, they send Special Agent Paul Budiansky (Colin Salmon) to work with Detective Martin Soap (Dash Mihok) to bring Castle in for good. Meanwhile, Billy Russoti, whose face was mangled during the incident and who now calls himself Jigsaw, wants revenge. He springs his brother, James (Doug Hutchinson), better known as Loony Bin Jim, from the local asylum and decides he’s going to take out Donatelli’s widow, Angela (Julie Benz) and daughter, Grace (Stephanie Janusauskas) and then the Punisher himself. On top of that, Russoti is in the middle of a deal with the Russian mob involving some biological weapons, a deal that the feds and N.Y.P.D. alike absolutely do not want to happen.While the plot is fairly thin, there’s enough meat on the bones of the plot to work. Each of the central characters has sufficient motivation that their actions make sense and with the plot established and the characters set up, director Lexi Alexander wisely chooses to not waste anymore time and get on with the action. Sure there are a couple of sentimental flashbacks in the movie, but those serve to remind us that there is a living, breath, feeling human being underneath the skull emblazoned Kevlar armor.The real heart of this film is in its action scenes and it is in these scenes that the picture really excels. When Castle kills someone, he really kills them. A face is punched in (literally), throats are slit, a head is cut of, brains are blown out, there are squibs galore and in one remarkably ridiculous scene a balletic gang banger is blown up, mid maneuver, by a rocket launcher. The violence in the film is hard hitting and completely over the top – just as it should be!Equally as ridiculous are the film’s villains. Dominic West and Doug Hutchinson are having so much malicious fun as Jigsaw and Loony Bin Jim that, while you want the Punisher to take them down, you can’t help but want them to come back for a sequel. These guys play the parts with completely unwarranted but very welcome enthusiasm, playing everything to the hilt – the mannerisms, the New Yawk accents – to the point where they are literally comic book villains incarnate. Stevenson’s Frank Castle is perfect in the lead, bringing a nice sense of brooding menace to the character and scowling his way through the film just as you’d want him too.Helping the over the top performances and ultra violence immensely is some fantastic camerawork and lighting. There are large portions of the movie that are bathed in Bava-esque primary colors, really upping the comic book come to life aesthetic that Alexander was obviously going for here. It works, and it works well. Not only does the movie zip along at a great pace but it looks fantastic doing so.