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Last Crusade

September 2009

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michael myers

Hooray for vacations... Boo for What I've Been Doing With It (Spoilers for a 2 year old movie ahead)

Well, vacation has finally started for me. That means two weeks of relaxing and (hopefully) writing a chapter or two. It also means I've been busy catching up on sleep so I haven't been Internetting very much the past few days. And there's the new Eternal Destiny ficlet community to keep me busy. And there's a new story idea buzzing in my head that won't let me write. I'm going to try outlining it in a few days, then see if I can get started on updating Bark At The Moon and Goodbye To Romance. It's been far too long between updates, especially since I used to get two chapters out a week. It's like I'm turning into InuGrr(rrr are there a few more r's? I can never remember)l... but without the vagina.

So I started off my vacation by watching some things I've been putting off. Tomorrow I'm going to watch John Carpenter's The Thing (which I bought last Halloween and still haven't watched), but today was for a Dragon Gate DVD I bought months ago, and another movie I've been putting off... the Rob Zombie Halloween. But I'll get to that later.

Dragon Gate, if you don't know, is a Japanese wrestling promotion. Its roster is mostly people who were trained by Ultimo Dragon, and it's mostly awesome highflying and awesome tag matches. They're trying to break into the US, and released a DVD called The Best Of Dragon Gate that I can only assume is meant to introduce DG to a new audience. And on that level... well, there's something to be desired.  First off, my main gripe: Dragon Kid is nowhere to be found on this two disc set, and he's one of their bigger stars. I mean seriously, it's a best of set and no Dragon Kid. That's like if WWE made a game about the legendary performers of Wrestlemania, and decided not to include Macho Man. But that'd be silly, wouldn't it?

Speaking of silly, they have what appears to be a boyband/JPop gimmick, which I really liked. The wrestler's name is BxB Hulk (just pronounced BB Hulk), which I admit is a lame name, but just look at this entrance:




This sort of wonderful nonsense is exactly what's been missing in the North American product for years.

One thing I did like, is that there's English commentary. On the plus side, the commentators aren't annoying, they do mostly play by play and avoid stupid jokes. But they do a horrible job explaining who people are, and why they're fighting. I mean, there's a hair vs hair match and the only explanation we get for it is a five second recap that's all in Japanese. And it seems to boil down to a guy with a faux-hawk and his stable recruiting a referee and screwing the other guy over. Unless it's someone famous like Jushin Liger, the commentary really drops the ball when it comes to explaining to the viewers who's who. Like how is a new fan supposed to get caught up with what's going on? And if you're unfamiliar with how tag matches work in Japan, you're fucked, because there's a lot of them on this set. And don't get me started on the titles. They all have weird names like "Open The Brave Gate Championship" or "Open The Dream Gate Championship" or "Open the Triangle Gate Championship" and none of them are explained. Which one is the top belt? Which is the secondary? I don't know, and the commentators don't tell you. And that's where this set fails. The matches are awesome, the play-by-play honestly isn't bad, but Best Ofs should be about bringing in new fans and getting them up to speed, which this set does not.


And that brings me to Rob Zombie's Halloween remake. I put off watching this like you wouldn't believe. Not because I have something against remakes, it's quite the opposite; it's just that outside of the songs Dragula and Superbeast I haven't liked a thing Rob Zombie's done. And I still stand by that. I only watched it because everyone I know who's seen it liked it, and the preview for the Halloween 2 remake looked pretty cool. Now, I will admit, the remake's a step up from the utter mess that was The Curse of Michael Myers, the let's-make-everything-Screamness of H20, and the character assassination that was Ressurection, but that doesn't say much. I'd put it at about Halloween 5's level. I don't hate it, but it's not very good either. 

I know there are the people who wrote this movie off because it was a remake, and Halloween is already a perfectly fine movie, but it's not like Zombie's version is going to wipe the original out of existance, and besides, did anyone really think remaking the first movie would do more damage than Busta Rhymes karate chopping Michael out of a window and living to tell the tale?

The biggest problem with the movie is that Rob Zombie is obviously a Michael Myers fan, and it shows. I knew there would be problems off the bat when he took 25 minutes to do what the first movie did in 2. Look, showing Michael Myers as a 10 year old in a Kiss t-shirt and the build up to him killing most of the rest of his family off (instead of just his sister) is really missing the point of Michael Myers. He's the boogeyman, he's not supposed to have this big involved backstory. Just imagine learning that the guy calling the babysitter from the upstairs phone telling her to check on the children spent his youth with an abusive father figure and a bitch for a sister; that the man hiding in the backseat with an axe who is only being stopped by the man in the truck behind him flashing his brights got his start killing the neighbourhood pets; and that Darth Vader was a whiney super-duper-cutesy-pie pilot kid who was loaded up on midichlorians. It doesn't make them scarier, it doesn't make them fresher, and it doesn't make them more threatening- it just makes them lame. Especially when you make everyone else in the movie completely unlikeable.

That's another problem, Rob Zombie can't write likeable or believeable characters. Literally everyone in this movie is the same one-note unsympathetic trailer trash character from The Devil's Rejects. Not even Laurie Strode escapes this fate. If you look at the first movie, Laurie, Annie and Linda all have distinct, likeable personalities. You get to know and care for them, which raises the stakes when Michael starts his stalking, and eventual murdering. Not so here. Linda keeps a bit of her ditzyness from the original, then really sluts it up, Annie becomes annoying and slutty to the point that not even being played by Danielle Harris can save the character, and Laurie is bipolar, alternating between being bratty, slutty and mean, to being normal. Not that any of that matters, since the main teen characters from the original are in this version for all of about 10 minutes because Zombie rushes things to get to the kills. That's another thing, the body count in this movie is probably higher than the first two Halloweens combined, and they're not especially creative or special kills either. This leaves absolutely no time for build up. The only character that Zombie got right was Dr. Loomis. And Zombie greatly reduced his role, instead choosing to focus more on Michael Myers.

The ending is also pretty lame. The chase scene is somewhat lacking in tension, and its overlong. And the last shot is so completely cliche and lame. The original ends in a perfect ghost story/urban legend way, Michael gets up, you hear his breathing and get still shots from his POV going back to his house. This movie? Laurie shoots him point blank in the face and it ends on a closeup of her screaming/laughing like Dana Kimmell in Friday The 13th Part 3. How original.

Comments

did anyone really think remaking the first movie would do more damage than Busta Rhymes karate chopping Michael out of a window and living to tell the tale?

Okay, I laughed my ass off at that. And I KNEW Rob's remake would suck ass. 1000 corpses and rejects were both horrible, so hearing that this stunk was just an, "Uh huh." for me.

And it's InuGrrrl and you are NOT getting like me. -.- I'll deal with you later, pesky brat!

EDIT: And I like coming to your blog. It's all weird, yet neat, like your shed! :P

Edited at 2009-07-05 04:45 am (UTC)
Well, I wouldn't say it sucked ass. It just wasn't very good... I am morbidly curious about where he's going for part 2 though.

And your name will be spelled however I decide to spell it. And you'll like it.
LOL! You so did not! :P

I oughta call your boss and tell him you don't need this vacation and you'd rather go back to work right away!

<.< THREE Rs, or you go back to... the room.
Pfft. Like you know the phone number. Besides InuGl (that's right, no Rs for you, it's easier this way), the schedule for the rest of my vacation is already done and posted. I assume, since this is the last day of our work week...

Besides, he probably wouldn't understand your New Yorkese anyway.

Oh yeah. I went there. I'm not afraid of any room.

Any way, enjoy this literal music video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HTPko-aXvJM