REVIEW REVIEW: PULSE (2006)

CAST

Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars)
Ian Somerhalder (The Vampire DIaries)
Christina Milian (Bring it On 5)
Rick Gonzalez (War of The Worlds)
Jonathan Tucker (Hostage)
Samm Levine (Not Another Teen Movie)
Octavia Spencer (Mom)
Ron Rifkin (Alias)
Riki Lindhome (Million Dollar Baby)
Brad Dourif (Child’s Play)

When Josh Ockmann (Jonathan Tucker) enters a dark university library intending to meet his friend Douglas Zeigler (Kel O’Neill), he is attacked by a humanoid spirit that sucks the life force out of him. Some days later, Josh’s girlfriend, Mattie Webber (Kristen Bell), visits his apartment, seeing evidence that it has not been well kept. Josh tells Mattie to wait in the kitchen while he walks off. While waiting she finds Josh’s pet cat, locked in a closet dying from severe malnutrition. But when she rushes to tell him, she finds he has committed suicide by hanging himself with an Ethernet cable.
Mattie and her friends begin to receive online messages from Josh asking for help but assume that Josh’s computer is still on and that a virus is creating the messages. Mattie learns that Josh’s computer has been sold to Dex McCarthy (Ian Somerhalder), who finds a number of strange videos on the computer. Mattie receives a package that Josh mailed two days prior to his death. Inside are rolls of red tape and a message telling her that the tape keeps “them” out, although he does not know why. Later, Dex visits Mattie and shows her video messages Josh was sending to Ziegler. Josh had hacked Ziegler’s computer system and then distributed a virus. This virus had unlocked a portal that connected the realm of the living to the realm of the dead. Josh believed he had coded a counter to the virus and wanted to meet Ziegler at the library. Josh’s counter-program is found on a memory stick taped inside the PC case with red tape.Dex and Mattie visit Zeigler and find his room entirely plastered in red tape. They believe the red tape keeps the spirits out. Zeigler tells them of a project he worked on where he found “frequencies no one knew existed.” Opening these frequencies somehow allowed the spirits to travel to the world of the living. Zeigler also tells them that these spirits “take away your will to live” and where to find the main server infected with the virus. Dex and Mattie find the server and upload Josh’s fix, causing the system to crash and the spirits to vanish. Moments later, however, the system reboots and the spirits return leaving Mattie and Dex with no option but to flee the city by car. Over the car radio, Mattie and Dex hear a radio report from the Army announcing the location of several “safe zones” where there are no Internet connections, cell phones, or televisions. As Dex and Mattie drive to a safe zone, the film concludes with a voice-over from Mattie saying “We can never go back. The cities are theirs. Our lives are different now. What was meant to connect us to one another instead connected us to forces that we could have never imagined. The world we knew is gone, but the will to live never dies. Not for us, and not for them,” and clips of abandoned cities, including a window of an apartment with Josh looking through it.
pulse-stillAll the acting was up to the task without being exceptional. The story, while rather linear, was interesting enough to keep everything going, and I personally found the ending quite satisfying. It proves that horror does not merely have to need to have lots of gore, but can rely on an interesting premise.

REVIEW: VERONICA MARS – SEASON 3

Starring

Kristen Bell (The Good Place)
Jason Dohring (The Originals)
Percy Daggs III (Detention)
Francis Capra (Izombie)
Enrico Colantoni (Flashpoint)
Ryan Hansen (2 Broke Girls)
Tina Majorino (Waterworld)
Michael Muhney (The Young and the Restless)
Julie Gonzalo (Cherry Rush)
Chris Lowell (GLOW)

Kristen Bell in Veronica Mars (2004)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Ken Marino (Agent Carter)
Patrick Fabian (Better Call Saul)
Jason Beghe (One Missed Call)
Charisma Carpenter (Angel)
Brandon Hillock (Villains)
James Jordan (Destroyer)
Andrew McClain (Alienate)
Rodney Rowland (Legacies)
David Tom (Swing Kids)
Samm Levine (Inglourious Basterds)
Rider Strong (Cabin Fever)
Chastity Dotson (Patriot)
Keri Lynn Pratt (Samllville)
Rachelle Lefevre (Twilight)
Dan Castellaneta (The Simpsons)
Ryan Devlin (Izombie)
Armie Hammer (The Lone Ranger)
Lindsey McKeon (One Tree Hill)
Krista Kalmus (Fired Up!)
Abby Miller (The Girl)
Ed Begley Jr. (A Mighty Wind)
Parry Shen (Hatchet II)
Robert Ri’chard (House of Wax)
Michael B. Silver (Jason Goes To Hell)
Daran Norris (Izombie)
Blake Shields (Heroes)
Ryan Pinkston (Will & Grace)
Jaime Ray Newman (Bates Motel)
Richard Grieco (21 Jump Street)
Adam Rose (Santa Clarita Diet)
Dianna Agron (Glee)
Laura San Giacomo (Pretty Woman)
Amanda Walsh (Disturbia)
Michael Grant Terry (Bones)
Sandra McCoy (Power Rangers Wild Force)
Charles Shaughnessy (Sabrina: TTW)
Patricia Hearst (Cry-Baby)
David Blue (Stargate Universe)
Matthew Alan (13 Reasons Why)
Jamie Chung (The Gifted)
Eric Jungmann (Not Another Teen Movie)
Brittany Ishibashi (Runaways)
Brianne Davis (Six)
Amanda Noret (She’s Out of His Mind)
Chris Ellis (Armageddon)
Carlee Avers (The Changed)
Toni Trucks (Grimm)
Juliette Goglia (Mike & Molly)
Jeremy Roberts (The Mask)
Anthony Azizi (Lost)
Jack McGee (Gangster Squad)
Fred Stoller (Little Man)
Duane Daniels (First Strike)
Paul Rudd (Ant-Man)
Suzanne Cryer (Two Guys and a Girl)
Edi Gathegi (Beauty and The BEast)
Tangie Ambrose (Why Him?)
Patrick Fischler (Birds of Prey)
Kyle Secor (The Purge: Election Year)
Max Greenfield (New Girl)
Christopher B. Duncan (Legacies)
Jim Jansen (A.I.)

Kristen Bell and Jason Dohring in Veronica Mars (2004)In its third season, Veronica Mars steps away from any season-length stories. Slightly truncated to twenty episodes, season three is neatly grouped into three distinct chunks of episodes. The season opens with Veronica settling into her freshman year at Hearst College, but the campus continues to be plagued by a spree of sexual assaults. Mac’s bubbly roommate Parker (Julie Gonzalo) is the latest victim to be roofied and raped, with the attacker leaving his calling card by shaving her head. Having suffered through the past couple of years as a rape victim herself and unwittingly in a position to have caught Parker’s rapist during the attack, Veronica’s grim determination to put an end to this reign of terror makes up the first and the lengthiest of the season’s arcs.The season’s second arc picks up a couple of months after the grisly final shot of “Spit and Eggs” as the police have shrugged off the death of someone close to Veronica as a suicide.Kristen Bell in Veronica Mars (2004)A devastating emotional blow delivered just hours earlier, a gunshot to the temple, a vague suicide note typed on a PC…it’s tragic, yes, but the pieces fit neatly together just the same. Still, it’s a scenario lifted directly from a paper Veronica penned for her criminology class on how to commit the perfect murder. Throughout the course of their investigation, Veronica and her father become entangled in a pair of other murders, among them the death of one of Veronica Mars’ most enduring characters.Facing cancellation and attempting to make the largely serialized series more accessible to new viewers, Veronica Mars draws to a close with a set of five standalone episodes. There aren’t any overarching investigations, although some threads leak from one episode to the next, including a sheriff’s race between Keith Mars and an unlikely contender.The season premiere introduces two other Hearst students who’d go on to stick around for the rest of the year: Wallace’s roommate Stosh “Piz” Piznarski (Chris Lowell) and Mac’s roomieuntitledThe hunt for Hearst’s rapist, which runs for the nine of the season’s twenty episodes, is the highest point of the set. It’s the most engaging of the season’s various arcs, which is impressive considering that these episodes have to juggle the weekly mysteries, the overarching search for the rapist, and introduce the new characters and Hearst College as a whole. There seems to be some connection between the rapes and the Greek system at Hearst, pitting Veronica against a group of feminists determined to bring the frats down, forcing her to defend the same lecherous halfwits she thought were tied to the rapes last season, and clawing her way into the Zeta Theta Beta house.Kristen Bell in Veronica Mars (2004)This first half of the season also gives the supporting cast a reasonable amount of screentime, including Wallace and Logan on opposite ends of an Abu Ghraib-inspired prison experiment, Logan stumbling onto a life-changing discovery when trying to find out why his trust fund is dwindling so quickly, and Keith making the same sorts of excuses with a married client as the skeevy men whose infidelities pay his rent. The arc comes to a close with “Spit and Eggs”, which, in true Veronica Mars form, plays like more of a thriller than a mystery, and it’s by far the most intense episode of the season. Veronica Mars was an excellent a show spread across 3 seasons and become a great cult show, and with the arrival of the movie saw resurgence in its popularity.

REVIEW: INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS (2009)

CAST

Brad Pitt (Killing Them Softly)
Melanie Laurent (Now You See Me)
Christoph Waltz (The Green Hornet)
Eli Roth (Terror Firmer)
Michael Fassbender (300)
Diane Kruger (The Host)
Daniel Brühl (Captain America: Civil War)
Til Schweiger (Driven)
Mike Myers (Austin Powers)
Julie Dreyfus (Kill Bill)
Samm Levine (Veronica Mars)
Michael Bacall (Django Unchained)
Léa Seydoux (Spectre)
Samuel L. Jackson (Avengers Assemble)
Harvey Keitel (Little Nicky)
Quentin Tarantino (Alias)
Bo Svenson (The Killing Machine)

Film Title: Inglourious Basterds

Chapter One: Once Upon a Time…In Nazi-Occupied France

In 1941, SS colonel Hans Landa, the “Jew Hunter”, interrogates French dairy farmer Perrier La Padite as to the whereabouts of the last unaccounted-for Jewish family in the area. In exchange for the Germans agreeing to leave his family alone for the rest of the war, La Padite reveals that the Dreyfus family is hidden under the floor. Landa orders SS soldiers to shoot through the floorboards. The whole family is killed except for Shosanna, a young woman who escapes when Landa decides not to shoot her as she flees.Film Title: Inglourious Basterds
Chapter Two: Inglourious Basterds

Three years later, Lieutenant Aldo “The Apache” Raine of the First Special Service Force recruits Jewish-American soldiers to the Basterds, who spread fear among the German soldiers by brutally killing and scalping them. The Basterds also recruit Sergeant Hugo Stiglitz, a German soldier who murdered thirteen Gestapo officers. Adolf Hitler interviews a German soldier, Private Butz, the only survivor of a Basterd attack on his squad. Raine carved the Nazi swastika into Butz’s forehead with a knife so he could never hide that he served in the German Heer.

Film Title: Inglourious Basterds
Chapter Three: German Night in Paris

Meanwhile, Shosanna is operating a cinema in Paris under an assumed name. She meets Fredrick Zoller, a German sniper who killed 250 soldiers in a single battle; Zoller is to star in a Nazi propaganda film, Stolz der Nation (Nation’s Pride). Infatuated with Shosanna, Zoller convinces Joseph Goebbels to hold the premiere of the film at her cinema. Shosanna plots with her projectionist and lover, Marcel, to kill the Nazi leaders attending the premiere by setting the cinema ablaze.

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Chapter Four: Operation Kino

Unknown to Shosanna, British Army Lieutenant Archie Hicox is working with the Basterds to plan an attack on the same premiere. Hicox goes to a tavern with Hugo Stiglitz and Basterd Wilhelm Wicki to meet with an undercover agent, the German film star Bridget von Hammersmark. A German soldier named Wilhelm engages them in friendly conversation, but Gestapo Major Dieter Hellstrom overhears them and becomes suspicious of Hicox’s German accent. Hicox convinces him that he is from the Swiss mountains, but then gives himself away by ordering three drinks and gesturing “three” with his hand (with thumb and pinky finger down); Hellstrom knows that Germans gesture “three” with the thumb and first two fingers extended. They are discovered, and the Basterds open fire, killing everyone in the tavern except Wilhelm and a wounded Hammersmark. Raine arrives and negotiates with Wilhelm for Hammersmark to be released, but the actress kills Wilhelm when he lowers his guard. Raine learns from Hammersmark that Hitler himself will be attending the film premiere and decides to continue the mission. Later, Landa investigates the aftermath at the tavern and finds one of Hammersmark’s shoes and a napkin with her signature, clues that will lead him to her.

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Chapter Five: Revenge of the Giant Face

At the premiere, two of the Basterds, Donny “The Bear Jew” Donowitz and Omar Ulmer, join Raine in posing as Italians, hoping to fool the Germans unfamiliar with the language. However, Landa, who speaks fluent Italian, converses briefly with the Basterds before sending Donowitz and Ulmer to their seats. He takes Hammersmark to a private room, verifies that the shoe from the tavern fits her foot, then strangles her to death. Raine and another of his men, Smithson “The Little Man” Utivich, are taken prisoner, but Landa has Raine contact his superior with the OSS and cuts a deal: He will allow the mission to proceed in exchange for immunity and rewards.
Film Title: Inglourious BasterdsDuring the screening, Zoller slips away to the projection room to see Shosanna. After she rejects his advances, he becomes aggressive. She pretends to acquiesce, then pulls a pistol from her bag and shoots him. Zoller, mortally wounded, raises his pistol and shoots her before they both die. As the film reaches its climax, spliced-in footage of Shosanna tells the audience that they are about to be killed by a Jew. Marcel, having locked the doors of the cinema, ignites a pile of flammable nitrate film behind the screen as Shosanna’s image laughs. Ulmer and Donowitz break into the box containing Hitler and Goebbels, killing them, then fire their submachine guns into the crowd until the bombs go off, killing everyone in the theater.
Film Title: Inglourious BasterdsLanda and his radio operator drive Raine and Utivich into Allied territory, where they surrender. Raine shoots the radio operator, carves a swastika into Landa’s forehead, and tells Utivich with a grin, “This just might be my masterpiece.”Film Title: Inglourious BasterdsThe film is audacious and hilarious. It’s  a roller coaster and one not to be missed! It’s not for everyone, certainly if you’re not a fan of Tarantino’s style, this may be a little hard to swallow, but never-the-less, it is a film which simply has to be seen. No self respecting film fan should miss this.

REVIEW: I LOVE YOU, BETH COOPER

 

CAST
Hayden Panettiere (Heroes)
Paul Rust (Inglourious Basterds)
Jack Carpenter (Sydney White)
Lauren London (90210)
Lauren Storm (The Game Plan)
Shawn Roberts (Resident Evil: Afterlife)
Jared Keeso (Elysium)
Brendan Penny (Poison Ivy 4)
Marie Avgeropoulos (50/50)
Alan Ruck (Speed)
Andrea Savage (Step Brothers)
Samm Levine (Not Another Teen Movie)
Ellie Harvie (The New Addams Family)
Emily Tennant (Motive)
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On graduation day at Buffalo Glenn High School in Tacoma, Washington, valedictorian Denis Cooverman (Paul Rust) confesses his love for head cheerleader and long time crush, Beth Cooper (Hayden Panettiere) in his speech while also taunting a girl, Valli Wooley (Marie Avgeropoulos), with an eating disorder, an ignorant bully, Beth’s Army soldier boyfriend Kevin (Shawn Roberts); and urging his best friend Rich Munsch (Jack T. Carpenter) to ‘come out of the closet’ and finally admit he’s gay. Afterwards, Denis invites Beth and her friends, Cammy (Lauren London) and Treece (Lauren Storm), to a party he has planned at his house.
At Denis’s house, his parents leave but not before his father (Alan Ruck) revealing that he has condoms upstairs if he needs them. Beth, Cammy, and Treece arrive at Denis’s house for the party. Kevin and his trendy four-wheeler soon come barging in, with his Army buddies vowing revenge on Denis. They attempt to beat Denis up, but it results in Denis, Beth, Rich, Cammy, and Treece escaping in Beth’s car.
They drive to a gas station hoping to get beer, but are told by the convenience store clerk (Samm Levine) that he will not accept the driver’s license Beth gave him which states that she is 37. So Beth bribes the clerk with a kiss. He accepts, which makes Denis realize that she is not who he thinks she is. They then start a bonfire in an isolated section of town where Rich, Cammy, and Treece are chased by a stampede of cows after trying to tip one over. Denis then puts on the song “Beth” by KISS and is told that she was named after that very song. Denis thinks it’s cool that beth has two “headbangers” for parents. In Beth’s eyes one can see she’s slowly warming to Denis, and is becoming aware that he truly does genuinely love her, much to her amazement.
They all get in crazy reckless driver Beth’s Echo and drive without lights. They then stumble upon Denis’s father and mother (Cynthia Stevenson) (who are both having car sex) by almost crashing into them. Rather than facing Denis’s father with his pants down, Beth decides to drive them away unseen to a private party at Valli Wooley’s house, encountering Kevin once again who had tracked them there. Kevin challenges Denis to a fight, as a now fed-up Beth crashes his car through the wall of the house. They drive away in Kevin’s Hummer H2 to the vacant Buffalo Glenn High School, parking halfway up the front flight of stairs, and enter the school with Beth’s head cheerleader key. After showcasing their cheerleading routine, Beth, Treece, and Cammy decide to run to the girls’ locker room to take a shower. Just as Denis is undressing to join his friend and the girls in the shower, Kevin and his buddies appear in the locker room and jump him once again. Rich challenges Kevin and his friends in a towel whipping ‘duel’, as he has been training for years after being towel whipped as a bullied young kid. Rich finally manages to defeat the three guys, towel-whipping them unconscious down a flight of stairs. They escape to Treece’s father’s cabin in Beth’s Echo where Rich, Treece, and Cammy have a threesome, as Beth and Denis enjoy the sun rise and finally share their first kiss.
They head to Denis’s house afterwards where his parents are delighted to see he has ‘hooked up’ , but make him aware he still needs to be punished for leaving the house in a wreck. Beth says goodbye to Denis, gives him a kiss, and touchingly thanks him for loving her. Denis tells her “what’s not to love” and that she mustn’t forget that. Then promises that he will see her at their high school reunion and if they are both still single that he will marry her. Beth smiles and tells him it’s a deal. After Beth leaves with Treece and Cammy, Rich proclaims to Denis that he might be homosexual after all, or perhaps bisexual (plus jokes that after last night’s antics he’s still more heterosexual than Denis). Denis informs Rich that he was just playing about waiting until the reunion to talk to Beth again. He tells Rich that he is going to leave Beth a message on Facebook and ask her out. Rich disagrees with him and tells Denis that he should make a grand gesture by going to her house with a boom box and wait for her. They then begin debating on how Denis should go about asking Beth on a date.
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Good movie, Hayden is decent in this and plays her part well as do all the leads, the ending could have been better as its left open a little but a nice film.

REVIEW: NOT ANOTHER TEEN MOVIE

CAST

Chris Evans (Captain America)
Chyler Leigh (Supergirl)
Jaime Pressly (My Name Is Earl)
Eric Christian Olsen (Tru Calling)
Mia Kirschner (The Vampire Diaries)
Deon Richmond (Scream 3)
Eric Jungman (The Faculty)
Ron Lester (Varsity Blues)
Cody McMains (Bring It On)
Sam Huntington (Superman Returns)
Lacey Chabert (Mean Girls)
Samm Levine (Pulse)
Cerina Vincent (Power Rangers Lost Galaxy)
Ed Lauter (The Number 23)
Mr. T (The A-Team)
Randy Quaid (Independence Day)
Molly Ringwald (Pretty In Pink)
Nathan West (The SKulls 2)
Josh Radnor (How I Met Your Mother)
George Wyner (American Pie 2)
Nick Bakay (That 70s Show)
Melissa Joan Hart (Sabrina)
Sean Patrick Thomas (Save The Last Dance)
Riley Smith (Eight Legged Freaks
JoAnna Garcia Swisher (The Internship)
Rob Benedict (BIrds of Prey)
Oz Perkins (Secretary)
H. Jon Benjamin (Wet Hot American Summer)

In the stereotypical high school community of John Hughes High in Southern California, sexy Priscilla (Jaime Pressly), a popular cheerleader, separates from her football star boyfriend, Jake Wyler (Chris Evans). After Jake discovers that Priscilla is now dating peculiar Les (Riley Smith) just to spite him, one of Jake’s friends, Austin (Eric Christian Olsen), suggests seeking retribution by turning Janey Briggs (Chyler Leigh), a “uniquely rebellious girl”, into the prom queen. Jake attempts to court Janey’s love, but faces adversity from his own sister, Catherine (Mia Kirshner), who is sexually attracted to him; Janey’s unnoticed admirer and best friend, Ricky Lipman (Eric Jungmann); and memories from his past football career. Catherine eventually assists her brother by slightly altering Janey’s appearance (by simply removing her glasses and ponytail), instantly making her drop dead gorgeous.

Meanwhile, Janey’s younger brother, Mitch (Cody McMains), and his friends, Ox (Sam Huntington) and Bruce (Samm Levine), make a pact to lose their virginity by graduation despite still being in their freshman year. Mitch tries to impress his longtime crush, the beautiful yet perverted Amanda Becker (Lacey Chabert) with a letter professing his love for her. Bruce says that he does not have a chance with her, mockingly stating, “Keep dreaming!”
As the prom draws near, Jake draws infamy among his peers after he fails to lead his football team to victory at the state championship game the year before. The situation is further worsened when Austin tricks Jake into telling Janey about his plan to spite Priscilla by pretending to whisper the secret bet in Janey’s ear, causing her to immediately leave Jake. During prom night, Austin and Janey go together; a jealous Jake and Catherine have a dance-off with Austin and Janey, with Catherine dancing in a sexual manner. Janey runs off crying. Meanwhile, Mitch and his friends are having a lousy time at the prom until Amanda arrives and Mitch gives her the letter and Ox later hooks up with Catherine.

Jake is awarded prom king and the principal reads out that the votes for prom queen are tied. Everyone thinks that it is between Janey and Priscilla, but they are shocked to find that Kara and Sara Fratelli (Samaire Armstrong and Nectar Rose), twins conjoined at the head, win prom queen. During the traditional prom king and queen dance, Janey supposedly left with Austin to go to a hotel.

Jake goes to the hotel room where he finds Austin having wild sex with a girl but is shocked to find that it is Priscilla not Janey while the weird Les videotapes with his pants down supposedly having an erection, Austin tells Jake that Janey “ran home to her daddy”. Jake angrily punches Austin and Priscilla, knocking them out cold, for what they had done to Janey. He then punches Les for “being really weird” (he also punches a plastic bag that happens to be floating next to Les); afterwards he runs to Janey’s house only to learn from her father (Randy Quaid) that she is going to Paris for art school.

Jake arrives at the airport and confronts her before she can board the plane, and uses a plethora of clichéd lines from other movies (such as She’s All That, Cruel Intentions, American Pie, The Breakfast Club, American Beauty, 10 Things I Hate About You, Can’t Hardly Wait, and Pretty in Pink) to convince her to stay in America. His final (and only original) speech suggests they would be better off apart, but Janey mistakenly believes he is quoting The Karate Kid, and she decides to stay with him.This film is so funny great film very entertaining would recommend to any one if you want a good night in having a laugh

REVIEW: WET HOT AMERICAN SUMMER: FIRST DAY OF CAMP

CAST
Paul Rudd (Ant-Man)
Janeane Garafalo (Mystery Men)
David Hyde Pierce (Hellboy)
Michael Showalter (The Ten)
Marguerite Moreau (Easy)
Michael Ian Black (This is 40)
Zak Orth (Music and Lyrics)
Bradley Cooper (Serena)
A.D. Miles (Role Models)
Christopher Meloni (Man of Steel)
Molly Shannon (Never Been Kissed)
Ken Marino (Veronica Mars)
Joe Lo Truglio (Superbad)
Amy Poehler (Mean Girls)
Marisa Ryan (Cold Hearts)
Elizabeth Banks (The Hunger Games)
Kevin Sussman (The Big bang Theory)
H. Jon Benjamin (Not Another Teen Movie)
Lake Bell (No Strings Attached)
Jason Schwartzman (Bored to Death)
Samm Levine (I Love You, Beth Cooper)
John Slattery (Ted 2)
Chris Pine (Star Trek)
Jon Hamm (Man Men)
Michael Cera (Scott Pilgram vs The World)
Kristen Wiig (paul)
Eric Nenninger (The Flash)
Jayma Mays (Ugly Betty)
Richard Schiff (The Cape)
Rob Huebel (Baywatch)
Kerri Kenney (Anger Management)
Jerry Lambert (American Housewife)
Janeane Garofalo in Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp (2015)
Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp – the Netflix prequel series to 2001’s Wet Hot American Summer that we never knew we desperately wanted – is very funny. In fact, it’s freakin’ hilarious for uber-fans of the original. I can only assume it’s mildly amusing to those who’ve either never seen the movie or saw it and weren’t fans.The thing about it though is it’s really tethered to the movie. This is a prequel series made under extreme prequel rules. Not only is it specifically designed to be watched afterward, but many of the jokes won’t land if you don’t know what lies ahead come the “last day of camp.” Quick non-spoilery example: Comedian “Alan Shemper” is mentioned (perhaps I should have put comedian in quotes instead) and the young counselors of Camp Firewood freak out with excitement. Why? Well, the movie pre-answered that. And that’s just one of many instances that indicate that, despite this being a hyped-up Netflix Original event, you need to watch the movie.

Now, the original Wet Hot American Summer came with a loaded cast, many of whom went on to become even more famous than they were when the movie was released. One of the gateway jokes for the prequel is that everyone, in real life, is much older, but now they’re playing even younger versions of the characters they portrayed in the original. And it was even a stretch back then that they were playing teenagers. In fact, this “old teenager” gag was part of the original’s charm as well. Here, the joke isn’t as much of a joke as you’d think. Most everyone has held up fairly well. Noticeably older, sure, but not hilariously so. In fact, the only time it feels like a goof is whenever Showalter shows up as Coop, as he’s really the one who’s, let’s say, a much different shape than he used to be.
So let’s talk about the cast. Again, this was an impressive ensemble back in 2001. And everyone’s back. Showalter, Paul Rudd, Elizabeth Banks, Amy Poehler, Bradley Cooper, Janeane Garofalo, Marguerite Moreau, Zak Orth, Christopher Meloni, Joe Lo Truglio, Ken Marino,  Michael Ian Black, and many more. Even director Wain has a recurring role this time around. And while it must have been difficult to get everyone back given people’s busy schedules, Wet Hot American Summer is set up to be an accommodating side/pet project. As in, it’s not often that all the characters interact, and most of the time they’re paired off and go about their separate stories. The actors weren’t as famous back in 2001, but that movie was still filmed super quick and designed to section people away from each other into different threads.
Now, some characters, given the rising careers of the actors who played them back in the original, have somewhat of an expanded presence. It’s understandable. For example, both Banks and Poehler have a lot more screen time here than they ever did in the movie. But this is also now a four-hour story, so there’s room for this type of change-up. And one of the best things this series does is create zany, clever origin stories for beloved elements from the movie. Not just characters, like Meloni’s Gene and Banks’ Lindsey, but actual things. Songs. Characteristics. Odd in-jokes. They all get a “beginning.” The way Poehler’s Susie came to be so hard on auditioners. The reason David Hyde Pierce’s Henry summers by the camp. The empty vegetable can voiced by H. Jon Benjamin. The freakin’ “Higher and Higher” song! All these things are given a backstory.
And this series didn’t just manage to get back its  original cast. There are also guest stars galore. Doing some amazing, quirky things here. Jon Hamm as a government assassin, Chris Pine as a mysterious hermit who lives on the camp grounds, Michael Cera as a ambulance-chasing lawyer given the case of a lifetime, Lake Bell as Coop’s “mixed signals” girlfriend. Hamm’s not even the only Mad Men’er around as John Slattery recurs as a “renowned” theater director and Rich Sommer stooges for Josh Charles’ snobby Camp Tiger Claw counselor Blake. Camp Tiger Claw which — instead of being a badass, evil Cobai Kai-type commune like the name suggests — has a “blue blood country club from the 50s vibe,” including evening socials that involve dancing the foxtrot.
Like the film, First Day of Camp takes place over the course of one day. And similar story beats and lunacy are employed. There are strained romances (Rudd’s Andy trying to fart his way into Moreau’s Katie’s heart, Coop wondering if Lake Bell’s Donna is faithful), a stressful stage production that has one day to come together for a nighttime performance (here it’s new wave musical “Electro City”), and a doomsday crisis that Garofalo’s Beth must avert in order to save the camp. There’s even a spectacular Victor Pulak chase scene. So the actual structure of the original is upheld.
es, I’d say that you definitely need to be a fan of the original Wet Hot American Summer movie to enjoy all First Day of Camp has to offer. The entire thing’s a love letter to itself and it’s wonderful. It’s great to see everyone back as well as all the new faces.

REVIEW: WET HOT AMERICAN SUMMER

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CAST
Paul Rudd (Ant-Man)
Janeane Garafalo (Mystery Men)
David Hyde Pierce (Hellboy)
Michawl Showalter (The Ten)
Marguerite Moreau (Easy)
Michael Ian Black (This is 40)
Zak Orth (Music and Lyrics)
Bradley Cooper (Serena)
A.D. Miles (Role Models)
Christopher Meloni (Man of Steel)
Molly Shannon (Never Been Kissed)
Ken Marino (Veronica Mars)
Joe Lo Truglio (Superbad)
Amy Poehler (Mean Girls)
Marisa Ryan (Cold Hearts)
Elizabeth Banks (The Hunger Games)
Kevin Sussman (The Big bang Theory)
H. Jon Benjamin (Not Another Teen Movie)
Kyle Gallner (Smallville)
Samm Levine (Not Another Teen Movie)
Kerri Kenney (Anger Management)
In 1981, Camp Firewood, a summer camp located near Waterville, Maine, is preparing for its last day of camp. Counselors have one last chance to have a romantic encounter with another person at Camp Firewood. The summer culminates in a talent show.
Beth (Janeane Garofalo), the camp director, struggles to keep her counselors in order—and her campers alive—while falling in love with Henry (David Hyde Pierce), an astrophysics associate professor at Colby College. Henry has to devise a plan to save the camp from a piece of NASA’s Skylab, which is falling to Earth.
Coop (Michael Showalter) has a crush on Katie (Marguerite Moreau), his fellow counselor, but has to pry her away from her rebellious, obnoxious, and obviously unfaithful boyfriend, Andy (Paul Rudd). Only Gene (Christopher Meloni), the shell-shocked Vietnam war veteran and camp chef, can help Coop win Katie—with some help from a talking can of vegetables (voiced by H. Jon Benjamin). All the while, Gary (A.D. Miles), Gene’s unfortunately chosen apprentice, and J.J. (Zak Orth) attempt to figure out why McKinley (Michael Ian Black) hasn’t been with a woman, the reason being that McKinley is in love with Ben (Bradley Cooper), whom he marries in a ceremony by the lake; Victor (Ken Marino) attempts to lose his virginity with the resident loose-girl Abby (Marisa Ryan); and Susie (Amy Poehler) and Ben attempt to produce and choreograph the greatest talent show Camp Firewood has ever seen.
This has to be one of the funniest movies I have ever seen. David Hyde Pierce is great in this comedic role – and the deleted scenes are twice as funny as the film.