Posts published under “Horribly Awesome”
Oh yeah, I am going there. Remember back when Pauly Shore was famous for not being a has-been boob. This was the movie that put him over the top, and you are welcome. On top of that, this movie launched the feature film career of Brendan Fraser, and again, you’re welcome. To put the cherry on top, Sean Astin puts in his typical “and you thought I was dead” appearance to remind everyone of how old they are to see the star ofGoonies age.
With all of this going for it, along with a no name director Les Mayfield (amazingly enough this is not his worst film), the film has one of the most asinine plots every created. Two high school dweebs, while digging a pool, find a frozen cave man. Upon thawing him out, the two dweebs bring him to high school, because one is trying to impress a girl (of course). In the ensuring madness, the cave man becomes the most popular guy in school, and ends up making his dweeb friends cool enough to make out with their crushes (cause that’s how real life actually is).
The absolute implausibility of this story is so amazing that you let go of any rationality while watching this and see through to a bunch of juvenile jokes, that lets admit will always makes us laugh. However, my favorite part is the fact that Pauly Shore’s character is the exact same as his MTV character, but the names are different. This would take place again in Son In Law, and would lead to way to many weasel jokes that can never be taken back. As with many movies from various stages of our lives, Encino Man shows us the absolute idiocy of the MTV culture in the early nineties, and emends that you never want to go back again.
Lets jump in the ole time machine, and go back to an innocent time that was known as the nineties. During this time, the public had a huge fascination with a certain writer name Stephen King. His books and film adaptations had become loved by millions of people. This gave TV studios the idea of taking anything that they could get their hands on and try adapting it into the dreaded TV Mini-Series. This was first done with IT, and with its success, ABC clamored to get their hands on as many King titles as possible. This resulted in interpretations of The Tommyknockers, The Stand, and The Shinning. However, there was one more that was done between the Stand and the Shinning, this was the Langoliers.
The plot is that of a group of passengers who find themselves alone on a flight from L.A. to Boston, and when they noticed that all of the other passengers have disappeared, they begin to piece together the mystery. For the majority of the mini-series, they hear and see the destruction of the unknown entities coming to get them called the Langoliers. As with many of these mini-series, they are points where careers are born, others die, and some just stay unknown. The notable beginning was with David Morse, but actress Patricia Wettig would be relegated nothing but TV work afterwards. This also saw the last notable appearance of Bronson Pinchot. Then there is Dean Stockwell and Frankie Faison, both are actors that pop up all over the place, but never seem to land a strong recurring part. That is until Stockwell got a role on Battlestar Gallactica.
This movie teeters between horribly awesome and just horrible for most of its entirety. The acting is not good at all; the storyhas obvious gaping holes that even a two part series couldn’t cover; and when the final reveal is shown of the dreaded Langoliers, the special effects are so bad that it is entirely unbelievable. Now one can make the excuse, back in 1995 there weren’t the leaps forward in CGI that we have today. I saw this when it premiered on TV and it was bad for back then, Sesame Street had better special effects and acting. To give you an idea of how ridiculous the series is at times, there is a scene where the antagonist, Pinchot, is about to attack one of the supporting characters when he is hit in the head with a toaster being swung in a sling. It take three blows to knock him down. They would have us believe that it take three swings of a five pound toaster to take down Balki Bartokomous. In all seriousness, it should only take one. This is one of thousand reasons that this movie is not just bad but horrible, and it takes a very forgiving mind to find some awesomeness within. However, it may just be horrible without any awesomeness.
Glad to be back after a short break. Once again, I sacrifice myself for the fun of you all. What can be said about Timecop? The plot is this: the U.S. Government has created the ability to time travel, and therefore they create a bureau to police this technology and the timeline. At this government division, someone is already using time travel to make themselves rich. The division is headed by Matuzak (Bruce McGill) and his main crime fighter is Walker (Jean-Claude Van Damme). They are trying to stop these ”Time Crimes” and save the future. In addition, Walker may be able to change the past and save his true love, Melissa (Mia Sara). The antagonist is McComb (Ron Silver), an evil politician hell bent on winning the Presidency.
Looking at the plot summary, this movie has so many cliches that it is obvious why it is horribly awesome. In addition, JCVD is a master of the art of Horribly Awesome movies (see Hard Target, Universal Soldier, etc.), and we could have chosen any one of his movies. However, this was released at the pinnacle of JCVD’s popularity. It carries the weight of being the apex of JCVD’s career, because it was down hill from this one for him. Within the movie, there are so many aspects that are completely implausible that it makes this one a joy ride/laugh riot. My first favorite thing is JCVD himself. His character’s name is Walker, yet he has a Belgian accent which he uses not to prevent crime but to murder the English language. My second is that at the beginning of the film JCVD has a perfectly normal haircut (boo!), but in the future his mullet takes shape (hooray!). Therefore, murdered wife causing cop to be rouge equals sweet mullet. So we have the accent, we have the hair, so what is missing? That’s right, the implausible fighting ability of a regular cop. The movie’s “Present-Day” section was set in 1994, and apparently either Washington D.C. PD requires all of the police officers to have training in multiple styles of martial arts or they got the best damn cop there is. I side with the latter. So this is what we have so far: a D.C. cop named Walker with a Belgian accent and superior martial arts skills travels through time to stop “Time Crime.” Booyah!!! Blockbuster!!! Read more »
HUDSON HAWK (1991, DVD)
For what seems like my entire life, I have been defending this movie. While I may be one of the only people in the world that owns this film, I genuinely enjoy this movie. I was about ten when the movie hit rental stores, and the humor was right up the alley of a ten year old. Little did I know back then that I would be making excuses for having this on my shelf later on in my life.
One way of describing the plot of the film is: Hudson Hawk, a recently released cat burglar, is trying to have a cup of capuchino coffee. In the process of this, he gets thrown into a world-wind escapade involving espionage and love and Da Vinci. The more lengthy synopsis: Hudson Hawk is forced into collecting pieces of a crystal created by Leonardo Da Vinci that can turn iron into gold. The pieces are hidden in a equestrian statue in a New York auction house, the Da Vinci Codex in the Vatican, and a Da Vinci model in the Louvre. While on these heists, the Hawk runs into an evil international corporation, the CIA, and the Vatican. In the end, Hawk has to defeat the corporation and the CIA to save the world economy.
Now, I know what you are thinking, this is crap. And you are not far off. On the surface, the movie looks to be a middle of the road star studded cast making a fun film for themselves (a la Ocean’s 11). However, this did not end up being the case. The origin of the movie was created by Bruce Willis and Robert Kraft. We all know who Bruce Willis is, and Robert Kraft is a musician that has been the song producer on the Little Mermaid and the Mambo Kings. However, Kraft is most famously known for writing the Who’s the Boss Theme song and Willis’ music for his album “The Return of Bruno.” They created the character for a song before each of them became famous, and later on in their careers decided to transfer the character to film. The movie was then sent to be scripted and was written and re-written before production.
There are many problems with this movie, that are obvious. There are multiple story problems, and some of the acting is atrocious (Andie MacDowell and Sandra Bernhard). Many of the plot twists and cuts of the film make no sense at all, and the singing of old show tunes is bizarre beyond any rationalization. There are way too many winks at other movies, too the point it makes it even more confusing. So what makes this movie horribly awesome? All of it. This movie is so bad it turns good (with a very open mind). It is like a young wine in a bad year, it taste bad after a few years. Let the bottle sit even longer it will eventually be an OK tasting bad bottle of wine.
The movie makes very little sense, from the story line of Andie MacDowell’s character of being a nun wooed by Bruce Willis to Danny Aiello’s character getting blown up and living at the end, but if you want to see what a blown up ego looks like this is the movie for you. Willis was in the middle of a string of box office hits (Blind Date, Die Hard, Moonlighting, Look Who’s Talking, Die Hard 2, and Look Who’s Talking Too) and had the power in Hollywood and with Tri-Star to green-light anything he wanted. This was his first project brought to Tri-Star, and it was Tri-Star’s last movie. Willis took a huge critical hit and bankrupted Tri-Star with this one movie. The movie from a casting stand point had most of the tools to work. Along with Willis, Aiello, MacDowell, and Bernhard; the cast was rounded out with Richard Coburn, David Carusso, Richard E. Grant, and yes a Frank Stallone appearance. The movie was directed by Michael Lehman, who gained notoriety from his work on Heathers. However in the end, it all ended up being a huge pile of poop, but if you know it is poop then it is a horribly awesome pile of poop to watch.
Helpful Tip: If you are brave enough to sit through this movie, be sure to check out the director’s commentary. It explains much of the odd things about the movie, as well as has some pretty good excuses for scenes.
First, let me say that is a pleasure to be contributing to this site. I am honored that I was asked to contribute my thoughts and opinions on one of my most favorite hobbies: film. Second, my features will be appearing weekly, and will feature a specific topic each week of the month. These features will be looking back at some of the most memorable movies I have come across. Some for very good reasons, but most for the wrong reasons. Speaking of:
While laid up in my recliner with one of those Spring head colds that makes you wish that you did not have a head, I revisited one of my favorites.
HIGHLANDER (1986/DVD/streaming on Hulu) This is a cult classic starring Christopher Lambert, Sean Connery, and directed by Russell Mulcahy. The essence of the movie is the story of Malcolm MacLeod, a Scottish immortal, who is about to take part in the event known as “the Gathering.” This event is where all immortals fight till there is only one. Following this story, we see Malcolm’s current life leading to “the Gathering” mixed with flashbacks to his past. Most importantly how he learned of his immortality and how to fight. The movie was popular enough to spawn three more movies and a television series. In its opening weekend in 1986, Highlander pulled in over 2 million.
I had to use this movie because of how it treads the line of being horrible and awesome. The story is one of the better ones that has been presented in Hollywood Sci-Fi movies and the movie is very entertaining. The bad parts are: Lambert’s acting is not the greatest in the world, but excusable providing the story line. As we know, he is the man who would become Rayden in the film adaptation of Mortal Kombat (see future review). Highlander almost feels like two movies in one. The flashbacks contain some great cinematography of the Highlands of Scotland, and of course Sean Connery. But the “modern day” part of the movie looks like a campy Sci-Fi movie played on Cinemax at night (including an almost pointless sex scene). Read more »