Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Film Review: Robocop (1987)

Robocop (Review)
United States/1987
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: No

"Robocop stands with other SciFi classics from the era..."

With the city in shambles, the Detroit police are ran by Omni Consumer Products (OCP), a mega-corporation. When a violent incident occurs, they seize the opportunity to test their Robocop experiment...

Robocop primarily follows Officer Murphy (Peter Weller). When he's slaughtered by a vicious crime lord, OCP rebuilds him as Robocop -- fairly self-explanatory, a robot cop. So, while Robocop lowers the crime rate with pinpoint accuracy, OCP continue to plot their destruction of rundown areas of Detroit and construction of their high-end replacement city, Delta City. Anyway, Robocop soon realizes his true identity and seeks justice, which entangles him in a larger conspiracy. The climax is fantastic. The ending, albeit abrupt, is charming -- for lack of a better term.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Film Review: The Interview (2014)

The Interview (Review)
United States/2014
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: No

"...the Skylark/Jong-un segments were hilarious, some of my favorite moments in the film."

Talk show host Dave Skylark (James Franco) and his producer Aaron Rapoport (Seth Rogen) head to North Korea to interview Kim Jong-un (Randall Park)... with ulterior motives.

The Interview begins with a hilarious Skylark interview with Eminem. After some thought, Rapoport convinces Skylark to tackle bigger challenges. So, they ask North Korea for an interview with Kim Jong-un. To their surprise, the reclusive leader agrees, as long as he controls the interview. Central Intelligence catches wind of the interview and convince Skylark and Rapoport to assassinate Kim Jong-un -- they reluctantly agree. The plans shift after some humorous mishaps and a sudden change of heart. It leads to an action-packed and surprisingly violent climax and a humorous ending.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Film Review: Jeepers Creepers (2001)

Jeepers Creepers (Review)
United States/2001
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: Yes

"...maybe we can call it 'flawed perfection?'"

Siblings Trish (Gina Philips) and Darry (Justin Long) travel through the countryside on their way home during college break. On their trip, the pair stumble upon a terrifying secret...

Jeepers Creepers follows these normal siblings as they travel home during their break. In the desolate countryside roads, the pair encounter a man in an ominous brown truck. Soon, they find the man harbors some sinister secrets in the basement of a church. Afterward, the pair are relentlessly pursued by the man, who turns out to be a beast unlike anything they've ever encountered. It's a very straightforward story, not much else to say about it. Well, the ending was also a bit strange, but I liked it.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Film Review: Identity (2003)

Identity (Review)
United States/2003
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: No

"...offers more than enough mystery, suspense, and atmosphere to be one of my favorites."

While convicted serial killer Malcolm Rivers receives a final hearing for his crimes, a group of strangers are stranded in a secluded motel on a stormy night.

Identity features a very interesting and engaging narrative. So, while Malcolm Rivers receives his second hearing thanks to his uncovered journals, this group finds themselves stranded in a motel. This group includes limo driver Ed Dakota (John Cusack) and his celebrity client; Officer Rhodes (Ray Liotta) and the prisoner he's transporting; a prostitute named Paris; a young newlywed couple; a family of three; and Larry, the motel owner. As they are settling in, they start suffering from violent deaths. Only a room key with a number counting down from 10 connects the vicious murders. It all leads to a great ending.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Film Review: Ragnarok (2013)

Ragnarok (Review)
Norway/2013
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: No

"...aside from its clichés and contrived moments, Ragnarok is surprisingly entertaining."

Sigurd (Pål Sverre Valheim Hagen), an archeologist, takes his family on vacation to Finnmark to find evidence of the Viking extinction known as the Ragnarok...

Ragnarok follows Sigurd and his two children, a fellow archeologist, said archeologist's assistant, and their guide as they travel to Finnmark to find the evidence. So, they find a cave system and a Viking helmet, which supports their theory. Unfortunately, the group become trap in the area and eventually find themselves facing off against a vicious creature. Not much depth or character to the story, but enough to keep you seated until the end. The ending itself is predictable.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Film Review: Neverlake (2013)

Neverlake (Review)
Italy/2013
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: Yes

"...a dreadfully slow-pace and a lot of unnecessary filler..."

On a trip home to Italy, Jenny (Daisy Keeping) finds herself entangled in a mystery involving a lake...

Neverlake is an interesting story. The story follows Jenny, who has some annoying mood swings, as she comes home to visit her father. Her father is preoccupied, though, and she's not pleased to meet her father's assistant. Anyway, Jenny meets a group of orphans nearby and they show her the true power of the lake. From there, she follows their direction (without question) and finds that her father may be be part of the mystery. It leads to a satisfying climax and ending.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Film Review: The Chinese Connection (aka Fist of Fury) (1972)

The Chinese Connection (aka Fist of Fury) (Review)
China/1972
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: No
Amazon Prime: No

"...a very fun experience..."

Chen Zhen (Bruce Lee) returns to Shanghai to marry his fiance, but finds his master has tragically passed.

The Chinese Connection, or Fist of Fury, follows Chen as he returns home to this tragic news. Soon after the funeral, his school is threatened by a Japanese school of martial arts. After Chen shows his exemplary skill, he begins to investigate his master's death -- Chen believes his master's death was too sudden to be caused by a natural illness. So, Chen seeks his vengeance with one epic battle after another and a fantastic climax. The ending was also surprising -- I liked it.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Film Review: Lone Survivor (2013)

Lone Survivor (Review)
United States/2013
Format Viewed For Review: Blu-ray (Universal Studios)
Netflix Streaming: No
Amazon Prime: No

"...emotionally-effective, incredibly entertaining, and even motivational."

Four Navy SEALs on a recon and surveillance operation are attacked when the operation goes haywire...

Lone Survivor is a very simple story. The film follows leader Michael P. Murphy (Taylor Kitsch), snipers Marcus Luttrell (Mark Wahlberg) and Matthew Axelson (Ben Foster), and communications specialist Danny Dietz (Emile Hirsch) during this operation. Soon after the operation begins, they're spotted by goat herders and have to make a difficult decision: kill the goat herders, tie them up and leave them, or free them. Of course, they free them with unfortunate consequences. So, they later find themselves fighting the Taliban through the woody area. It's fairly easy to guess the ending of this film: you simply have to read the title and check out the cover or poster.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Film Review: Blood Valley: Seed's Revenge (aka Seed 2) (2014)

Blood Valley: Seeds Revenge (aka Seed 2) (Review)
United States/Germany/2014
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: No

"...one of the worst films I've ever reviewed..."

A group of friends returning from a bachelorette party in Vegas cross paths with a psychopathic killer in the desert.

Blood Valley: Seeds Revenge is a film that is unnecessarily told in non-chronological order -- it jumps from scene to scene for no apparent reason. So, let me tell you what happens in chronological order. A group of friends returning from Vegas run into a hitchhiker -- he has little relevance in the story. Then, they run into a seemingly stranded cop. Their vehicle conveniently breaks down, so the cop orders two of the girls to walk with her to the nearest town -- the other two girls stay in the RV. Meanwhile, Seed (Nick Principe), our serial killer, kills the women. The ending, like the rest of the film, was terrible.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Film Review: The Ouija Experiment (2011)

The Ouija Experiment (Review)
United States/2011
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: Yes

"...film feels like it was rushed out to cash in on the Paranormal Activity craze..."

A group of friends videotape their Ouija experiment...

The Ouija Experiment follows a group of friends who film themselves playing with a Ouija board. They have some personal drama which causes them to break a rule -- they forgot to say goodbye! So, a cliché haunting erupts and an inconsistent mystery unravels. That's practically everything in the film in a nutshell. Oh, and it all leads to a contrived climax we've seen a million times and a ridiculous ending.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Film Review: Unforgiven (2013)

Unforgiven (Review)
Japan/2013
Format Viewed For Review: Blu-ray (Warner Home Video UK)
Netflix Streaming: No
Amazon Prime: No

"...a very effective and entertaining drama."

Jubei Kamata (Ken Watanabe), a former samurai, joins an old associate to help claim the bounty of two other former samurai who severely disfigured a prostitute...

Unforgiven follows a reluctant Jubei, his old friend Kingo (Akira Emoto), and a tag-along, Goro (Yūya Yagira), as they venture to claim the bounty -- a bounty setup by the prostitutes. The task is more difficult than expected as the local lawman, Ichizo Oishi (Kōichi Satō), rules with an iron fist and Jubei struggles with his moral dilemma. It would seem Jubei suffers more and more as he delves deeper into the job. The narrative is fairly simple, as you can see, yet engaging. It leads to a strong climax and powerful ending, as well.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Film Review: Venom (2005)

Venom (Review)
United States/2005
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: No

"...a typical slasher with an interesting concept but flawed execution."

In the swampy backwoods of Louisiana, a group of teenagers find themselves dealing with an evil presence...

Venom is an interesting yet cliché slasher horror film. The story follows this group of teenagers after local Ray Sawyer (Rick Cramer) dies while trying to save a priestess woman. Turns out, the woman was carrying evil souls she "milked" from evil people, and those souls have possessed Ray Sawyer. The story takes a lot of time to buildup this simple concept, all whilst we spend time with some very hollow characters. (I can't even remember their names.) The second half becomes more of a traditional and exciting slasher. The ending is familiar yet enjoyable, too.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Film Review: At The Devil's Door (2014)

At The Devil's Door (Review)
United States/2014
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: No

"...a hit-and-miss film -- and it does both evenly."

Real estate agent Leigh (Catalina Sandino Moreno) is hired to sell a house that harbors a supernatural secret...

At The Devil's Door actually begins with a teenage girl (Ashley Rickards), who plays a peculiar game with a mysterious man. The story then leaps to the present where Leigh is trying to sell the house -- the same house the teenage girl lived in. So, Leigh sets up the sell while talking to her "moody" sister, Vera (Naya Rivera). Things go a little more than bump in the night at the home, consequently causing Vera to investigate the mystery. It becomes a bit hectic and contrived during the final act. It ultimately leads to a disappointing and wasteful ending, as well.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Film Review: Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones (2014)

Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones (Review)
United States/2014
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant (Extended Edition)
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: Yes

"...not enough life to revitalize this dwindling series."

In Oxnard, California, Jesse graduates from high school and celebrates. Soon, Jesse and his friends cross paths with a neighbor suspected of being a witch...

Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones is more of the same, with some minor changes. The film begins like every other supernatural found footage horror film -- home videos. After these boring home videos, which show us Jesse and his friends bothering his neighbor then breaking into her apartment, Jesse finds he has some abnormal powers a la Chronicle. Then, he starts to change and become more serious, so his friends investigate. They find out about a coven and track it back to this large, ominous home. Finally, it reaches the same conclusion, as usual, except for a slight difference in the final minute.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

CinematicAddiction Blog Update #3!

I've been running CinematicAddiction.com since April 2013, and I'm barely on my third official blog post. So, you can probably tell, I'm not much of a blogger. I can deliver hundreds and hundreds of reviews, but I can barely write a blog post without feeling unnatural or strange. Anyway, welcome to our third blog update!!

It's 2015 and I plan to continue CinematicAddiction.com for as long as possible. It's been a very fun personal project, I love sharing my opinion on films from around the world. In fact, I've shared my opinion approximately 256 times in 2014. In other words, I posted 256 reviews in 2014, which is up from 230 in 2013. Aside from the many reviews I've personally written and posted, CinematicAddiction.com has conjured over 100,000 pageviews in 2014 alone. That's a great accomplishment for a 100%-independent website without a marketing budget.

Enough statistics, though, let's get to 2015. Like I said, I plan to continue reviewing on CinematicAddiction.com for as long as possible. I also plan to continue my side-project - KoreanMovieReviews.com - for as long as possible. However, reviews may be less frequent than 2014, particularly due to my new writing projects, which I have not shared on this website - until now.

Since October 2014, I've been self-publishing my own horror books. I've collected several of my short scary stories and compiled them into a horror anthology book, which quickly became a series of books. On October 20th, 2014, I published Tales From Under The Bed Vol. 1; on November 19th, 2014, I published Tales From Under The Bed Vol. 2; and, on December 19th, 2014, I published Tales From Under The Bed Vol. 3. (A little shameless plug here: if you'd like to show support for CinematicAddiction.com, please purchase a book. It helps a lot!)

Anyway, I plan to continue my self-publishing venture in 2015, exactly as I plan to continue reviewing movies for CinematicAddiction.com. And, I plan to stay 100% independent as I proceed with my plans and goals. Thanks for reading this update and please share it with your friends. Any support you can offer helps me continue moving forward - I appreciate your readership more than you can imagine. If you have any feedback, leave a message in the comment section below, e-mail me, or tweet me @Jonny_Athan.

Thanks and have a happy 2015,
Jonathan S (Jon Athan)
CinematicAddiction.com
KoreanMovieReviews.com