As a little kid in the 80's, I ended up watching MAD MAX BEYOND THUNDERDOME at a friend's house who had HBO. It BLEW ME AWAY, everything from the whole post-apocalyptic setting and aesthetic to the Thunderdome battle against Master-Blaster to the final high-octane vehicle chase ending. Awesome characters and action. But most of all, Max himself is what drew me in. I've always been more of a fan of the Han Solo / Jack Sparrow / Ash Williams type of anti-hero rouge characters -- the selfish pirate with a heart of gold who heroically does the right thing, but without sacrificing too much of the "Han Shot First" vibe. Mad Max is the personification of this archetype. Silent, deadly, tough as nails. Best kind hero, IMHO.
When I finally got to move backwards through the franchise and see THE ROAD WARRIOR (Thunderdome's predecessor), I was even more blown away and taken with it for all the reasons I loved Thunderdome. Road Warrior is the perfect Western. And a perfect action film. LOVE IT. Not quite so big a fan of the original MAD MAX, but it's still an awesome first chapter to this franchise, having seen these three in reverse order for the first time.
Cut to MANY LONG YEARS later and we finally get George Miller's promised return to this world and character with MAD MAX: FURY ROAD. At first I was a little distressed that were going forward without Mel Gibson in the role, but Tom Hardy has proven himself to be up to the challenge. Last night I got to see the movie at an early screening and it was EVERYTHING I WAS HOPING FOR amped-up by 25%. There's just nothing like this movie. It's all the artistic and poetic details you love in a movie like "Amelie" or any of Terry Gilliam's work, coupled with FUCKING INSANE action sequences. Some of the best stunt work, "action driving" cinematography, and pure visual storytelling I have seen in a long time. Can't wait to go see it again upon its release next week. Hopefully the start of a new trilogy for George Miller with Tom Hardy as Max, and hopefully Charlize Theron will also reprise her character in future installments.
Two out of two stars. Go see this one. Unlike anything you will see at the box office this year.
-Justin Staggs / @staggfilms
The other day I made a "Your The Man Now Dog" joke. The young person I was with had no idea what I was talking about. Neither the website or the movie. Other than suddenly feeling very old, I felt compelled to share the movie, GIF and website that changed the internet forever.
I like the film, maybe a 7/10. The screenplay won the Nichol Screenwriting Fellowship... and actually was made into a Hollywood movie, which rarely happens. The story and tone is kind of like Good Will Hunting which is probbaly why they got Gus Van Sant to direct. The film has one amazing moment where Sean Connery yells "Your the man now dog!" This unintended halrity spawned the webite www.YTMND.com with gems like:
Most of these center around movies or movies stars but are just really cool:
Then there are the purely annoying:
Or just plain weird:
If anyone has some free time make some Junkshow Cinema YTMNDs and send them to us or post on this thread. We'll link to our favorites on twitter and one will win the Mystery Grand Prize.
One more to inspire everyone. http://nabooian.ytmnd.com/
I love me some original SciFi. I will pay top dollar (IMAX) to go see any original genre movie with an exciting vision, because that's what I wanna do. In a world of remakes, reboots, Transformers, board games, and every superhero under the sun being slotted into the Cineplexes around the globe, ANY bold, original SciFi / Horror idea coming out of Hollywood is a breath of fresh air, especially when coupled with a director who makes things look GOOD. I will gladly pay to see a movie that "doesn't quite work" or "takes too big of risk" over any of these other massive properties, any day of the week. JUPITER ASCENDING sucked my balls, but it meets these criteria, I'd say.
Neill Blomkamp makes my head hurt. I loved DISTRICT 9 and couldn't wait for ELYSIUM. Neill's SciFi world-building and imagination is very much in my wheelhouse and I love his aesthetic and AMAZING, NEAR-SEAMLESS visual effects. Strong work in all of those departments. I don't love how he directs his actors and, let's face it, his screenwriting chops leave a lot to be desired. That was Elysium's problem by a long-ass mile. But the movie looked great and was full of BIG SCIFI IDEAS, so I gave it a "pass." It doesn't quite work, but I'm glad it exists. Big 'ol balls. That's important to me.
But CHAPPiE has me scratching my head 'til it bleeds. This movie LOOKS GREAT and has some interesting BIG SciFi ideas pumping in its robotic heart. The character Chappie is kinda great, well-performed, and the CGI is seamlessly integrated into the story. But the characters and the way the story is presented is just SO DUMB. Just dumb people, doing dumb things. This is shitty storytelling, and that's something I just can't give a "pass" regardless of how imaginative, awesome-looking or bold the movie is. Putting Die Antwoord in leading roles was "bold", but you could say the same thing about putting Britney Spears in a movie. Interesting choice.
This brings me to ALIEN 5. Neill Blomkamp gets to direct this -- what I would call a DREAM GIG for any filmmaker. I was excited about the concept art he released online and his desire to continue the story from ALIENS (part 2) -- perhaps my favorite movie of all time. But I'm quite concerned about his ability to deliver "the goods" at this point. Maybe if he wasn't the one writing the script, I'd be a little more stoked. We'll see. I'm scared, though. Please hold my hand.
I support original SciFi because that's what I love and that's what I want to do with my career. I just hope these visionary directors (Blomkamp, the Wachowski Siblings, et al) don't fuck it up for the rest of us, burning up MASSIVE budgets on their poorly conceived stories. 2015 is off to a ROUGH start.
But I will keep showing up at the Cineplex, cash in hand, an optimistic twinkle in my eye. Like the cow in the cattle line, filing into the slaughterhouse. Goddammit.
-Written by Justin Staggs
In 1990, David Lynch's TWIN PEAKS was kind of a big deal. A chilling murder mystery, bat-shit awesome characters, and a cornucopia of bizarre supernatural and surrealistic flourishes brought David Lynch's unique, underground brand of "art film" to primetime / mainstream America. Everybody was wondering "Who Killed Laura Palmer?" Bob is fucking scary. Agent Cooper is fucking cool. Audrey Horne is fucking HOT. And actor Ray Wise (Leland Palmer) is a force of nature with the voice of an angel.
Do yourself and favor and get stoked for Showtime's 2016 re-up of the series with a THIRD SEASON all these years later, and with most of the original cast returning. Seasons 1 & 2 are currently on Netflix streaming, so call in sick to work and watch them all back-to-back while guzzling black coffee and scarfing down pie. Then check out Lynch's 1992 follow-up movie "Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me" to get the R-rated version of the Twin Peaks Universe -- closer in tone to what we can probably expect from the upcoming Showtime re-up (boobs, f-words, demons).
Step into the Black Lodge. There's a little man there waiting to do a dance for you.