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 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

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 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
LOSTATSEA.NET > FEATURES >

July 15, 2004
A funny thing happened last year. I didn't attend many films, or rather, I didn't attend many good films. I knew such types existed, but instead of seeing them, I saw films like The Matrix sequels and Scary Movie 3.

Perhaps I'm getting soft as I age, losing the bitter edge that makes me an effective critic. With movies like Mystic River, The Station Agent, and Lost In Translation readily available, I cowered in fear that I might actually have to think while watching a movie, so I played right into Hollywood's hands - the lowest common denominator - and marveled at special effects and laughable dialogue.

That Halle Berry really did deserve her Oscar... have you seen Gothika? Brilliant... simply amazing, the way she threw herself against that wall! Not since Bruce Campbell... And Vincent Ruffalo...
or is it Mark D'Onofrio? Regardless, In the Cut has my vote for thriller of the year!


So, while I'd like to recommend a list of 2003 films to see, or create a pompous top ten list worthy of your time, sadly, all I can do is take the countless reviews and hype surrounding some of the more reputable films this year and pass them along to you... or better yet, you can get your ass on the Internet and do some research, you lazy bastards.

No wonder you barely passed Classic Civ 101... Instead, I offer a list of movies that, under no circumstances should you or anyone in your immediate vicinity watch. Ever. And just to be safe let's define "immediate vicinity" as within a five mile radius. I'm serious. Unless you think Mission to Mars or The Beach are works of art, these are films that will scar you more than the sharpest razor ever could. Without further ado...

WORST FILMS OF 2003 // Spain's Top Ten Movies to Avoid at the Video Store This Summer (and forever thereafter), in no particular order.

Scary Movie 3 - A third one? The first two were terrible, save for Chris Elliot and David Cross in part two (admittedly, they probably weren't as amusing as I would like to think, but I have this thing for bald white comedians).

The previews were somewhat amusing and the Wayans family was no longer attached... it was a long shot, but maybe that Zucker brother who didn't direct Ghost could spice up the franchise, perhaps add some of that Naked Gun style that the kids used to like so much.

Oh, touché, Hollywood. Fool me once, fool me twice, fool me thrice? I had better material in high school sitting in the back of the class cracking jokes about The Canterbury Tales.

Just because I laughed now and again doesn't mean that you're allowed to get off so easy, Zucker. Put me in front of a television or a movie screen and I'm bound to laugh eventually, even if a rogue tractor hits a baby... Sometimes that shit is funny, you know?

Gothika - It would be easy to focus on the irony that this is supposed to be a horror film, and is it ever, but since I'm not one to pander to the audience's lesser components, I'll instead point out what should now be obvious: Halle Berry is not a good actress. She is a very attractive actress, but even if she were tag teamed from behind by Anthony Hopkins and Morgan Freeman, her aptitude as a thespian would still hover around the Mendoza Line.

Gothika is so fallible, so inexplicably ludicrous, that to see it and try and comprehend it creates instant hemorrhaging in multiple organs. It's easier to understand the plausibility of Creationism than to understand the motivation of the story's ghost, who obviously forgot to take her anti psychotics before seeking Berry's help, not to mention the fact that Berry just takes each otherworldly encounter in stride.

Recommended for fans of Final Destination and Stephen King movie sequels.

In the Cut - As best as I can tell, the biggest hype surrounding this movie is Meg Ryan's breasts. They're small, natural, and supple, and only on screen for perhaps one minute from beginning to end, so let me save half the readers some trouble and recommend downloading the pictures... it'll be better for everyone in the long run.

This entire movie is filled with trashy, despicable types, people that I have trouble envisioning in the real world, more appropriately that they'd all be within the same area so they can hang out and have dirty relationships with each other. There's a lot of sex, some bizarre dialogue that should never win a woman's heart and does, and a flimsy murder mystery as a backdrop and an excuse to show Meg Ryan's breasts.

If you have a fiancée, you may have already been suckered into seeing this film in exchange for taking your significant other to see Alien: The Director's Cut... or was that just me?

The Recruit - Colin Farrell... HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA... no, really, HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA! Whew, my stomach hurts. Is there a bigger ass in all of entertainment? Yes, there are plenty of large asses, but this guy is on the fringe of the elite.

Oh, and what about the movie you ask? Farrell is a gay bartender that is so convincing in his act as a straight man that Al Pacino recruits him to join the CIA, or NSA, or NRA or something, for a deep cover assignment (not that sort of "deep" assignment, sickos) and Farrell finds himself caught up in a web of intrigue and Pacino's Ritalin crashes.

Daredevil - Has anyone else vowed to never see a Ben Affleck movie again? Is anyone else suspicious about his actual involvement in writing Good Will Hunting? Does anyone else suspect that Affleck is really Matt Damon's retarded younger cousin that has been protected since childhood?

If you're like me, you may have answered yes to some of the above questions. You might also enjoy reading comics too, and what's more, you might go and see comic book movies regardless of how terrible they look. If you're like me, you also have a prosthetic eye in your right ocular cavity after gouging it from the socket during the course of this film.

The only thing I remember vividly in Daredevil is his father, David Keith (the untalented white guy, not the imposing, cool as ice, black guy, Keith David), when I briefly thought first about his pasty white ass in An Officer and a Gentleman, and then blurted out I thought that guy was dead?!

Dark Blue - I have to admit, I like Kurt Russell. I have a soft spot in my heart for Overboard, and he's perhaps the only redeemable asset this film boasts.


-----|

Here's the recipe for Dark Blue (you can follow along at home):

.: 3 stalks corrupt Caucasian cops (diced)

.: 1 stalk young Caucasian cop in corruption training (whole)

.: 1 cup Stoic African American cop

.: 1 teaspoon attractive African American female cop (it's important to make sure that the officer is in fact female)

.: 1 bag surreal American Brand® tragedy (LA riots, 9/11, Japanese internment camps, etc.)

.: 1 Kurt Russell husk

.: Slowly steam 3 stalks corrupt Caucasian cops in a pot for ten minutes until soft, then reduce heat and add 1 stalk young Caucasian cop in corruption training. Cook for an additional two minutes.

.: Slowly mix in 1 cup Stoic African American cop, and in a large garbage bag, empty 1 bag surreal American Brand® tragedy. Add mixture to garbage bag while warm, and sprinkle 1-teaspoon attractive African American female cop. Shake violently and then empty into serving bowl. Garnish with Kurt Russell husk for aesthetics.

-----|


The Hunted - How many movies can Tommy Lee Jones make where he's a crotchety old cop/assassin trainer/army lawyer/Indian wannabe? It's great that he's found his niche, but the next time Hollywood needs some mildly imposing, stern, old guy to fill a role, try and get Clint Eastwood. He's infinitely better, much tougher, and an American legend.

So, have you heard this one? This guy (a thin Benicio Del Toro) suffers from post traumatic stress disorder, or psychotic battle stress, or schizophrenia or something, and he runs around killing people. The only person that can stop him is the person that created him: no, not his mother, but his Black Ops trainer, played by Tommy Lee Jones of course! Violence and hilarity ensue.

Dreamcatcher - Aliens really do exist, and our government has been aware of their presence for over 50 years. Hidden from the public eye, an elite task force continually wipes out the hostile alien brood, protecting our planet from invasion. Meanwhile, in a small forest cabin...

This movie could have been really good. It has a great cast (Thomas Jane, Jason Lee, Morgan Freeman, Damian Lewis, Donnie Wahlberg) ... although Tom Sizemore is in it too, and an interesting, albeit, trite premise about aliens that grow in humans, and a superb location for a horror film: a remote forest cabin in the dead of winter.

Instead, this movie is more a hilarious comedy about four kids who find a retarded boy named Duddits and each gain a special telepathic link with one another after stopping the boy from eating the teacher's chalk. It's all very touching, but the real clincher is the ending... just remember the battle cry "Duddits!" You'll thank me later.

House of 1,000 Corpses - Rob Zombie is just a character, right? Like the Ziggy Stardust guy, or Alice Cooper? He made this movie about these characters from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and how they hide bodies in some underground tunnel system where mutant people are operated on by a mad chiropractor.

It's all really terrifying. Honestly, don't watch this movie if you're faint of heart, because some of these circus performers are Class A scary! That reminds me, I need to go kill myself now...

The Matrix: Reloaded and The Matrix: Revolutions - Well, it was a good ride for the Wachowski brothers. They really did a number on the movie industry with The Matrix, a surprisingly good science fiction film that influenced countless movies, and spawned a variety of imitators.

Then they had to get all Lucas on our asses and make a trilogy. Special effects displays are amusing to marvel at, but sometimes, and maybe it's just me, I like a decent story and some credible acting in my movies too.

If you've seen the first Matrix, you have an idea of what these other two are like. What you may not expect, though, is the healthy doses of Suck each delve out in their own way, with the second tapering on mediocrity, and the third really monkey wrenching the entire works. I mean, a computer generated Laurence Fishburne in the third film? Like he was doing anything more productive... Oh, wait. It's been brought to my attention that he actually did "star" in the third film. I would've just asked him, but he has this thing against Internet journalists...

If you've yet to watch these two movies, it's likely because you had no interest in the first place. Good for you. In the grand scheme of things, karma shines brightly on your soul. For the rest of us? Well, you're invited to this rave my friend is throwing up in Wisconsin's Crystal Cave. See you there.

--
David Spain
Based in Chicago, Illinois, David Spain is a contributing writer for LAS magazine.

See other articles by David Spain.

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