DVD Review: A Tale of Legendary Libido

DVD Review: A Tale of Legendary Libido

  <!– P { margin-bottom: 0.08in; } –> A Tale of Legendary Libido begins with a wooden nose, broken off a statue, that looks just like a penis. It’s been somehow activated by a widow’s prayer for a man to ‘reliever her loneliness’. When someone picks up the nose, a couple dozen young men in loincloths suddenly appear and have sex with everyone (and everything) in sight. Since this can disrupt a village’s daily routine, the magic wang is buried, hopefully never to be seen again. But of course it is, or there wouldn’t be a movie. Later, the village has become a place where traditional gender roles are switched: women are sexually aggressive, and the men are too passive to even challenge a group of thugs from a neighboring village. All except Byun. Byun can run off the bad guys, but after an unfortunate experience where his crotch was set on fire, he can’t satisfy any woman in bed. The women of the village relentlessly make fun of him for his lack of skill and equipment. It’s even worse because his brother, Kang-mok, is the manliest of the manly men, coveted by all the women. Byun forms a crush on beautiful newcomer Darling, who earns the enmity of the other women when their men play Peeping Tom while she’s bathing. Meanwhile, an old man who was around during the original magic wang incident drops back in with his grandson. He takes pity on Byun and tells him where to find the buried nose, and that by sipping the wine it was buried in, he cane become a real...
R.I.P. Run Run Shaw

R.I.P. Run Run Shaw

Just what it says on the box: legendary producer (with his brother, of course) Run Run Shaw has died at the impressive age of 106. For decades the Shaw Brothers were a force to be reckoned with in the world of cheap & popular Hong Kong cinema. This filmography will show you exactly how prolific and influential they were. This New York Times article has a pretty decent summary of his life and work. And here is a clip from one of my favorite Shaw Brothers films, The Five Deadly Venoms. Love them, hate them or don’t really care, there’s no denying just how important the Shaw Brothers were to world cinema....
Godzilla 2014 May Not Suck

Godzilla 2014 May Not Suck

As we are all aware, there’s a new, American-made Godzilla film coming in 2014. For a long time I thought “Eeeeew more American Godzilla WTF.” but the new trailer that was just released today made me waver. We see soldiers parachuting with flares, lots of buildings crumbling and things exploding, a girl looking scared and the dad from Malcolm in the Middle (I think maybe he’s been in some other series recently that people liked) seeming anguished. And then, the moment we’ve all been waiting for…the roar. It was the roar that melted my hard, hard heart. Godzilla’s roar is one of the most iconic sounds in cinema (along with the Star Wars lightsaber noise and the transporter sound from Star Trek and the TARDIS from Doctor Who) and hearing it, nomatter where I am or what I am watching, sends a shiver up my spine. And good old Gojira looks right (from what you can see through the fog)- he looks like a slightly updated version of our favorite pug-faced ancient reptile. The new film comes out in May, and I can finally say I’m excited to see it. In conclusion, here is a picture of a keychain of Hello Kitty dressed as King Ghidorah. Because why the hell not.        ...
Happy Halloween! 13 Horror Film Review for You

Happy Halloween! 13 Horror Film Review for You

Happy Halloween Eve everyone! Here’s a treat for the night before: reviews on 13 scary movies I watched this month so you don’t have to. <!– P { margin-bottom: 0.08in; } –> Intruders (2011) Intruders benefits enormously from the presence of Clive Owen, manliest of the manly men. I hadn’t seen him in anything for a while, so it was a bit of a thrill. Unfortunately, even with Clive Owen, this movie is just okay. The film tells two parallel stories: one about a little boy named Juan in Spain, who is tormented by a demon/spirit/monster without a face, and another about a 12-year-old girl in England named Mia. On a trip to her grandparents’ country house, Mia finds an old, handwritten story in a hollow tree. The story is about a faceless creature called Hollowface, that stalks children to steal their features. She copies it and presents it as her own work in school, and apparently Hollowface takes this as permission to start messing with her. Her adoring father, John, is the only other person who can see this monster. As psychiatrists discuss the possibility of a folies a deux, John and Mia try to figure out how to vanquish this monster. <!– P { margin-bottom: 0.08in; } –> Intruders has a solid premise, but it relies heavily on a double twist, the first of which is telegraphed well in advance. The end is anti-climactic, with the tired solution of love saving us all. The has some genuinely creepy moments, as when Juan and his mother see Hollowface in a church (or do they?) but a sub-plot about...
Newsflash: I’m a Scaredy Cat

Newsflash: I’m a Scaredy Cat

This October my grown-up brain re-learned something it had long since forgotten: darkness is fucking scary. One day I went into the garage and flipped on the light, only to be greeted by a popping noise and a hideous smell like burned rubber. Somehow the big fancy tube light out there had blown something or other. It wasn’t just the bulbs, there’s something wrong with the wiring (the wiring in this house is messed up, thanks to the former homeowners who had lots of weird shit done. There are three separate light switches in two rooms that turn on the living room light, for example). So we turned off the breaker to the basement/garage to avoid burning the joint down. That was several days ago and we are still waiting on an electrician. The cat’s food bowl is in the basement, and I feed her every night before we go to bed. Going down into the pitch-black basement, toting a flashlight, gives me some serious willies. Everything from the couch to the game table to the laundry room door looks terrifying in the dim glow of a flashlight. I dump food in Mei’s bowl and skitter back upstairs as fast as I can, and I am not ashamed to admit it. So this entire post is not just about my inane life, here’s a short film where the only villain is the darkness- and it’s creepy as hell. Happy Halloween month, friends....
Tarsem & I: A Love/Hate Story

Tarsem & I: A Love/Hate Story

I have a weird relationship with Tarsem Singh, the movie director who is usually credited as ‘Tarsem’ because it sounds more chic. I love him occasionally, I hate him mostly, and I still get excited and hopeful when I find out he’d doing a new movie like this one. (also, ‘panopticon’ is a cool word) Tarsem started out in music videos, including the pretty neat one for R.E.M.’s “Losing My Religion”, which features lots of people with wings and Michael Stipe looking depressed. (they seem so surprised when an elderly angel falls into their house; I guess they’ve never read any South American magical realism) Then he moved on to movies, beginning with The Cell in 2000. It’s a film about a serial killer and the psychiatrist who literally moves into his head to figure out where his next victim is. It’s not a great movie, but it has some interesting visuals, some gorgeous costumes (shut up I’m a girl) and Tarsem shows us what the inside of a horse looks like, which is thoughtful of him. It helps that Vincent D’Onfrio is the bad guy and he’s completely fucking crazy anyway. All in all, The Cell was a 90-minute Nine Inch Nails video. Not surprising for a music video director, and it showed promise. The next Tarsem movie I saw was sublime. The Fall is about just that- literal and figurative falling. A movie actor who’s been paralyzed in a stunt gone wrong befriends a little girl who is healing from her own fall, and spins an epic tale for her to pass the time (and for other,...