Thursday, April 28, 2011

Totally Tubular Trailers

It seems as if I just did one of these thingamajigs a post or two back, and, well, that's because I did. The more often there's a fresh new edition of Totally Tubular Trailers only means that there are more and more sick looking movies are on their way. And when I say sick, I mean sic. Like, the way my friend spells it on facebook when describing something awesome. It's pretty funny, especially when he writes "fucking sic, bro!"

What I'm getting at here is, it certainly seems as if the glut that was the first quarter of 2011 is nearing an end, and now all sorts of great looking movies are making their way into our lives, our hearts and hopefully our beds. Well, just so long as they don't have gonorrhea. That shit is fucking sic, bro.

the prodigies

The Prodigies is a superhero/apocalypse film that focuses on five "special" teens that come together to lash out against the world after they are violently attacked in Central Park. Humanities only hope against the five prodigies is a sixth prodigy named Jimbo (Jimbo?!) Farrar, who must use all of his might top keep the five prodigies from exacting their vengeance-fueled apocalypse. 

The Prodigies is a French language animated film directed by Antoine Charreyron, whose previous works consist of directing a number of video games. Unfortunately, this trailer is not available in English as of yet, but this film looks absolutely fan-fucking-tastic. The animation style is simple and slightly underwhelming at first, but as the preview moves forward, your jaw will be sure to drop more than once. Also, including a MUSE song in a trailer, specifically the track chosen, is always a great way to grab my pickle for a tickle. 





Behind the walls

Jointly written and directed by Julien Lacombe and Pascal Sid, Behind the Walls (Derriere Les Murs) follows a young novelist who moves to a peaceful countryside so she can concentrate on writing her latest book. It isn't long before the novelist succumbs to terrifying hallucinations and nightmares, all the while, numerous young girls are disappearing from the area, which sends the locals into quite the tizzy. 

Like The Prodigies, Behind the Walls is also a French made film and, despite their lack of freedom and women's deodorant, the genre cinema that they have been producing has been some of the best outside of South Korea, and it doesn't seem like things will be slowing down anytime soon, especially after seeing this teaser.

It's a quick clip, but in less than a minute, you can see that Behind the Walls looks to be gorgeous, tense and chances are if the film is anything like this teaser, spines will be sent right into tingle mode. However, that could also be do to poor posture. 




Legend of the Fist

Next up is Legend of the Fist: The Return of Chen Zhen. The story is what you would come to expect from an action film where a guy wears a mask and fights crime. There's some form of corruption that needs to be dealt with, the titular character will be pressured by the double life that he lives and, most importantly, there will be some sic fucking action.

Legend of the Fist stars Donnie Yen, who is reprising his role of Chen Zhen from the 1995 TV series, Fist of Fury, which was actually influenced by the character Bruce Lee played in Fists of Fury. Sweet, right? Helmed by Lau Wai-keung, Legend also stars Anthony Wong and the always beautiful, but oddly fish like, Shu Qi, and is expected to see a US DVD release on June 16th.

The 20-second mark begins what should put a few skid marks right in yer undies.




Directed by non-porn star, Dick Maas, our last trailer for the day comes to us in the form of the Dutch horror flick, Saint (Sint). The movie exposes the beloved Saint Nicholas for what he really is: a bloodthirsty bishop who, whenever there's a full moon on the 5th December, murders as many children as he possibly can.

Saint basically looks like your standard Slasher film, but instead of a Santa killer, which has been seen more than once before, you have jolly ol' Saint Nick doing all of the hacking and slashing. It's an extremely fun premise, and I love every little thing about the look of Saint based off this excitingly awesome trailer. Luckily, IFC has recently picked up the rights to the film, so hopefully it will make its way to our shores by the holidays, which clearly would be the perfect time to watch such a movie.

That's it for now, boils and ghouls. Hopefully you all have enjoyed what you've seen here, and please, be sure to share your thoughts on any one of these trailers.  

Sunday, April 24, 2011

6 Films to Keep You Awake Intro and A Christmas Tale Re-Doo!

As I mentioned a handful of posts back, I will be posting reviews for all six of the films found in the 6 Films to Keep You Awake collection. Now, I wrote these reviews way back and, for whatever reason, just never got to posting them. Well, I decided I needed to put these sumbitches up, but I wanted to start with the one film in the set that I had previously reviewed, A Christmas Tale. I reviewed A Christmas Tale as part of the first ever celebration known as Death-cember and figured I could repost it (with a few grammatical edits, of course) since I am posting the other films. It make things a little more complete, plus it works as a good introduction to the series of films (and it means I don't have to explain the set all over again, too), so I hope you enjoy this and all of the other reviews to come!

In 2008, Lionsgate released 6 Films to Keep You Awake, a conglomeration of six (no shit, right?) somewhat short Spanish horror films from different directors, most of whom are of Spanish decent. The mastermind behind the this set is Narciso Ibáñez Serrador of Who Can Kill A Child fame and with us being knee deep in Death-cember, the no-brainer film to be discussed from this set is 2005's A Christmas Tale (Cuento de Navidad).

Written by Luis Berdejo and directed by Paco Plaza (both of whom also worked as writer and co-director of the fantastic Spanish zombie film, [REC]) A Christmas Tale is about five pre-teen kids that stumble upon a woman dressed in a Santa suit, trapped in a large deep hole in the woods. They decide to help her out, but when two of the boys go to the police, they discover that the woman is wanted for robbing a bank for two million pesetas. Not sure how much that is, but I bet it's enough to be in some big trouble.

With this information, the children decide not to help the woman out of her trappings, but instead of calling an adult or telling the police about the woman, these kids take a very different route. Even at such a young age greed rears its ugly head, and a few of the kids decide to try and get their hands on the stolen money from this unintentionally trapped thieving Santa using the leverage of her unfortunate situation. Cross dressing Santa's aren't down with extortion, but with a choice of losing all of her money or being trapped in a massive hole and left to die, well, there's no real wiggle room there.

At a scant 71 minutes, A Christmas Tale works like two very different films in terms of tone. The first half is almost like a kid's movie right out of the '80s and is very reminiscent of films like Stand By Me and the Brian Trenchard-Smith film, The Quest (man I loved that movie). It is set in 1985, and the film successfully conveys how life was for a lot of kids that age, at that time.

If you're in your mid-20s to mid-30s, you will love all of the bad-ass retro movies and TV shows that these children are in to. They use code names that are all character names from the A-Team; one kid is completely obsessed with the Karate Kid (I still am); there are glimpses of bedrooms filled with Star Wars toys (you know, before the prequels) and Ghostbusters stuff strewn about; and a few of the characters even watch what plays as a film within a film titled, Zombie Invasion, which is reminiscent of a cheap Italian Exploitation Zombie film. All of this really serves no other purpose than to show that these kids are into the same stuff many of us were when we were kids, and I am assuming the filmmakers were into themselves at that age.

All of the throw-back stuff is very well done and really brings a true sense of nostalgia in how it is all captured; more importantly, it brings about a sense of connection to the characters as you can see a bit of yourself in these kids in one way or another. However, just how far does that connection go? That is where the film takes a turn from fun '80s kids movie to a much darker place, when a few of the characters become quite manipulative, which shows how even youth can be driven by greed and power, just as adults can be.

We are all like the kids in many ways, but most of us would do differently in such a situation. Others...maybe not so much. The way a few of the characters treat their siblings and this woman, who is essentially bad but still a human, shows how evil some people can be when put into certain situations. There are certain consequences in making the decisions that they do make, and without getting into too much detail, when the woman escapes her unholy hole (that sounds so vaginal), she is not all too pleased about what the children did to her.

Outside of the trapped Santa, there are no adults to be "physically" seen in this film, which shows you that these kids are in their own little world, almost living by their own rules. All of the young actors in A Christmas Tale are very solid and believable in their roles, and all but one of the children are boys, with the lone girl being played by a pre-Pan's Labyrinth Ivana Baquero. Maru Valdivielso as the trapped thief in a Santa suit is fantastic, and when you get into the more horrific elements of this film, she is quite scary and effective, making for a great villain of sorts.

A Christmas Tale is an enjoyable, nostalgia filled romp that is well made and not commonly seen these days. The feeling of retro-kids films is spot on, and the horror elements are all in place for a fun holiday fueled ride that is well worth a watch during the Christmas anytime of the season.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Totally Tubular Trailers

This is a hefty collection of trailers I have for you all this time around, many of which are films that are blipping my radar with the wickedness. Let's not waste too much time with small talk here and get right into the shit.


Directed by Sarawut Intaraprom, our first trailer of the day is for the Taiwanese lensed  ghost story, aptly titled, Ghost: The Cinderella (aka KUVW). The film is about the unexpected death of a film star after numerous arguments with various crew members on the set of his latest film. Being stubborn, the actor comes back from his grave to continue arguing, and probably to kill a few people, too. Simple ghost story premise which is something that can be found in way too many Asian films, but what stands out about this one is the clear influence from American Torture cinema.   

The trailer is decent enough - with bonus points going to that red bikini - and while Ghost does at first appear to be no more than a basic ghost story, things take a turn for the torturous about halfway through. As much as the torture genre has been played out in the states, I think it could be very interesting to see another country take a crack at it. One things for sure, it certainly doesn't look like this film will be pulling any sort of punches.

No English, but it's not at all necessary.  




Next up is the trailer for the Uruguayan haunted house film, The Silent House (La Casa Muda), a "based on true events" tale of a father and daughter hired to renovate a broken down cottage but find themselves plagued by strange noises and frightening apparitions.

Director Gustavo Hernández promises 'real fear in real time', and this is achieved by filming The Silent House in one continuous shot. Is it a gimmick to get people to watch the film? That doesn't matter so much as how the end product turns out, and early word on this one has been mostly positive. This trailer simply kicks ass, and The Silent House is definitely on my most anticipated list.  




Our next clip comes in the form of a teaser trailer for Snowblade, a Martial Arts film that follows a female assassin who is forced to slay seven very unique individuals between the hours of moonrise and moonset.

Despite the fact that this film evokes instant comparisons to Sex and Fury and Lady Snowblood (which is a good thing, mind you), what really stands out about Snowblade is it's the directorial debut of Bey Logan, whose presence in, and knowledge of, East Asian and Martial Arts cinema is quite incredible, and more than enough to put Snowblade right on any Martial Arts fan's radar. The teaser flies by in a jiffy, but what is shown is more than enough to catch my attention. You'll figure out why real quick!




With Edgar Wright on as executive producer and Nick Frost in one of the lead roles, Attack the Block already has some promise. Add in the fact that word on the street has been unanimously positive for this Joe Cornish directed, inner city kids versus space aliens film, and you certainly have a true contender. The buzz has been enormous for this one, and most of you may have already seen this trailer already, but for anyone that hasn't had the chance, well, here it is.

The trailer speaks for itself, so take a looksee and I'd love to hear other's thoughts on this one.




Our final trailer for the day is for the independently made sci-fi film, Sweetheart, about a housewife whose husband and son take a trip into town but they never return. Left alone in their secluded farmhouse, she decides to go looking for them, only to discover the world is not what it used to be.

Directed by Michael Matthews, this 30-minute short-film is, according to those involved with the picture, inspired by the the Coen Brothers’ film, The Man Who Wasn’t There, as well as being a tribute to the noir films of the '50s and '60s. There is also a strong familiarity here with this film and the recent Sci-Fi films like Monsters and District 9, which are both movies that achieved a level of respectable cinematic effect with very little money.

Check out this fantastic trailer to see just what can be done with a little money and the desire to make something incredible.  

That's it for me, kiddies…I'm straight pooped and need to warm up for my weekly kickboxing class, which is followed by a few hours of tanning.

Until next time!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Pamela's Triple Doll Dare

Regardless of the fact that I'm still suffering greatly from the injury I received after stepping on a nail while in a wicked dance battle against Jeff Pickleberry in the Boys & Girls Club gymnasium this passed Thursday evening, I have been able to find the strength to crank out a few pieces of awesome for you all to check out. It's field trip time, folks, so grab yer bags and get on the bus…no, the shorter one…that's right, and we can go on our merry way!


First stop is the one place where you actually fit in: the Strange Kids Club, where I, as in me, as in myself, as in this fucking guy, has posted a little slice of magic for you all to enjoy. I dug up quite the interesting commercial for an '80s toy that went by the name, Pamela the Living Doll. Now, what's interesting about a TV ad for a children's doll, you ask? Well, you'll have to head over there to watch the clip and read my thoughts to find out, now won't you! Damn straight you will. 


tripledogAfter our super adventure at Club Strange, we have a special reservation at Paracinema all lined up for you. On the menu this evening is a review for the 2010 Canadian teen girl drama, Triple Dog. Me, reviewing a teen girl drama where the dialogue is almost as memorable as the radical skateboarding scenes? What more could you ask for?! Well, ice cream and a wad of hundreds, I suppose, but that's not the point. Jump on your board, put foot to ground and head over to Paracinema to check out my review, and we'll be besties for life!YAY!    


Whew! With Pamela the Living Doll and a review of Triple Dog, you have yourself a full day of fun! Well, more like 15-minutes of fun. Actually, it might not even be all that fun in the first place, so just look at it as 15-minutes wasted. Sorry.

P.S. Looking at the content for what I have posted at these other fine sites, I must ask: am I a girl?

Friday, April 15, 2011

All the Boys Love Mandy Lane: And I don't blame 'em

alltheboyslovemandylaneWithin the span of one summer vacation, Mandy Lane would make a drastic metamorphosis from the girl that no one noticed to the hot girl that all the guys are dying to get with. Mandy has a good, steady head on her shoulders, and with all the temptations and advances that come from horny teenage boys and the pressures brought on by her peers, she has been able to remain pure when it comes to her sexuality. Every dude-bro in school would love to be the one who breaks through her proverbial chastity belt, but Mandy is far too smart to fall for any of their cheap lines and promises of love. With her newfound hotness Mandy quickly becomes accepted into the cool kids club, meaning, all the girls want to be friends with her, while all the boys want to bone her.

The plot to All the Boys Love Mandy Lane is simple with Mandy being invited out for a weekend of hard partying at some kid 's parent free ranch, where all of the guys are fully expecting to seal the deal with her. Looking forward to a fun weekend away, she accepts the invitation and joins the intimate - and only mildly stereotypical - group of teens. While there, things get off to a good start with some seriously hardcore partying, some seriously pathetic attempts at boning Mandy and some seriously sick person knocking off the teens, one by one. As I said, simple, but there are a few twists and turns to be found throughout the story, though, I didn't find them all too difficult to figure out and had my correct guess by the 40-minute mark.


Regardless of predictability, All the Boys Love Mandy Lane is a tale told properly through its execution and craftsmanship. It's often referred to as - and very much is - a Slasher film at its core, but it lacks the stalk and slash elements of a traditional Slasher as well as the tension that comes with what one would expect from the genre. The kills are a little light, and outside of one wonderfully phallic inspired death (go booyah), they aren't all too gruesome, either. Lacking those elements doesn't really hurt the film too much, as those tactics aren't necessary for this particular story to work. You basically have a teen driven story where the teenage characters aren't a detriment to the film. The movie is respectful to the viewers with characters that are nicely written and respectably acted by the young cast, which is always something to applaud in modern horror fare.


What really pushes All the Boys Love Mandy Lane up over the top is the character of Mandy Lane as played by Amber Heard. The entire film rests solely on the shoulders of this one character; from the film's title to its premise, the viewer has to be on board with the spell Mandy casts on those around her. For a girl like Heard, the looks part is not a problem whatsoever, but there is much more to this character than just her beauty. It's her presence; it's the way that she carries herself; it's that indescribable thing that makes someone attractive past their looks, and that is what this film grounds its feet in. Heard is able to bring this to the screen like very few actresses could have, but her performance and presence aren't the only reason for the aura the character has around her.

The way in which she is filmed plays an incredible part in how Mandy Lane, the character, comes off, which is as all the male characters in the movie see her. Director, Jonathan Levine, does an overall solid job on the film itself, but it is what he does with the character of Mandy Lane, specifically, that is fantastic. It's a perfect melding of cinematic technique and an actress with the right look and ability that really give this one a unique feel. There's one scene in particular that is one of the more titillating moments in the film, and it is no more than Mandy coyly taking off her shorts and tank top so she can jump into a lake for a swim. This scene is sexy because Heard looks amazing, that's a given, but it's how it's shot with the use of warm lens flairs, teasing camera angles and the soft music that collectively bring the moment to a whole different level of cinematic seduction.


Since its 2006 Toronto International Film Festival premier, All the Boys Love Mandy Lane has been one of the most talked about horror films for as many good reasons as there are not so good reasons. Its lack of a U.S. release has been the subject of annoyance for many a genre fan (myself included), and rightfully so. There's really no reason not to have access to ANY film, whatsoever. Even with the recent promise that it's on its way to a DVD release in the U.S., in limbo it remains for the time being. And that is truly unfortunate as this is a film that could certainly be geared towards the same crowd as shit fluff like the Prom Night and The Stepfather (also featuring Heard) remakes, while getting support from most of the horror community. That my friend is a recipe for a horror flick that could be a major success. But for now, those of us in the know know enough to make sure we own a region free DVD player. 

Monday, April 11, 2011

Back in Black, Bitch!

That post title is a tad deceiving because while I am indeed back, I am rarely one to wear black, and there is not one portion of my body at this very moment that's covered by an article of black clothing. It just sounds cool, and it makes you think of AC/DC, which makes you think of Green Goblin trucks and Emilio Estevez, two things that drip cool like it's no ones business. Anyway, after a short hiatus, Chuck Norris Ate My Baby is back in action (as opposed to black). A week away from it all was just what the gyno ordered, and now I feel rejuvenated.


Double bad-ass

As I mentioned in my previous post, I took a trip to the land of rape and honey, better known as Las Vegas. It was a grand trip that garnered many a great tale, some of which I shall share with you briefly here. Besides placing third (it's a long story) in the Ozawa Cup International Karate Tournament, presented by Las Vegas Shotokan Karate, I decided to go and make an honest woman out of my longtime girlfriend and scrapbooking partner, Liz. We didn't take many photos, but I thought I would share with you this gorgeous shot of Liz in her dress, which was stunning to say the least.  


For the record She's not preggers, she just stores water during the winter months

Beautiful, right?! The time was more memorable and wonderful than anything outside of my very own birth, which I really can't remember all too well, so the slight edge goes to the wedding.

This Vegas trip had many more stories to tell, one of which was seeing Penn and Teller perform live. I've been a huge fan of the duo as long as I can remember, so the opportunity to see them do their thing was quite rewarding, plus I got a quick chance to meet them both afterwards, which was certainly worthy of a smile or two. I'm sure they felt the same way.


I don't know who that girl was or why she was in my picture, but I bet she wanted me

As great as the Penn and Teller show was it was completely dwarfed by seeing the Cirque du Soleil show, KA (not short for KA KA, but I wish it were). Now, this was something that we were really hoping to see, but weren't sure if the price would break our budget, however, we ended up getting a great deal on the Penn and Teller tickets and due to the hotel we stayed at, we got a huge discount offered for the KA tickets, so it had to be done.

And boy was it worth every cent spent.

I'm not going to go into detail about the show, because I'm lazy, but lets just say that in my life I have seen quite a few plays, big shows and more movies than can be counted, but none of them have ever come close to what I witnessed on stage with KA. The word incredible is not nearly a strong enough descriptive, and I cannot recommend enough that everyone take the chance to check out KA if the opportunity ever arises. Quite simply, It was mind blowing.

One other highlight was a trip to Madame Tussauds wax that ass museum. While a few of the wax figures look either a little too fake or not enough like the celebrity, many of them are quite amazing, to the point of creepy, even. There were a few that I seriously thought were going to go all Tourist Trap on me, but thankfully Mr. Slausen was nowhere to be found. One of the cool things about the museum is being able to interact with the figures themselves, which I did, specifically with the female ones. Repeatedly. Here's a few photos from my adventures in Toyland.

me and benme and whoppie

Giving advice to Ben about how to nab chicks better looking than that guy he's married to, and me trying to make whoopie with Whoopi

me and jennalizanddepp

Me proving that there is indeed going to be some sort of sex in the champagne room, and that same chick from Penn and Teller showed up at the museum. What a creeper!

I was a little bummed that the focus is more (more meaning almost completely) on varying degrees of celebrity, but it was still pretty damned awesome, plus there was a brief but satisfying haunted attraction within the exhibit, so that helped feed my need for horror during the trip.

Those are just some of the best highlights of the week away from life, but I'm sure you guys have lost interest by now, unless you want to hear about how much I drank, that is. Otherwise, things should be getting back to normal here within the next few days, so thanks for your patience and for those times we spent together.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Closed For Vacation


Due to a week long trip to Las Vegas for the Ozawa Cup International Karate Tournament, presented by Las Vegas Shotokan Karate, Chuck Norris Ate My Baby will be closed for the next week or so. It's awful, I know, but if you think about it, you can totally go back and read some old posts (and the grammar that come with them), or come to my house, power wash the entire outside, clean my grill and put up a new roof. That would be swell. When I get back, things will commence as usual, and the only things I have specifically planned are reviews for All the Boys Love Mandy Lane as well as all of the movies in the 6 Films to Keep you Awake Spanish film collection. Sweet, right?! RIGHT?!  

With that said, I will miss you all, and to help tide you over until my already much anticipated return, I leave you with this, something that will truly inspire you to do better for yourself when on the dance floor. Or, a wheat field. That is wheat, right? 

Sunday, April 3, 2011

In the Flesh: Some Quick Thoughts on The Ruins


These thoughts are infested with spoilers, yo!

Getting the chance to rewatch 2008's The Ruins recently, I found that the film that I had quite enjoyed when it was released still held up very well a few years afterwards. Not that just over two years is a long time or anything, but for a movie that featured a generally young cast and came out over the last five years, it's certainly one of the better ones. Knowing that The Ruins is based off a novel (that I've heard is quite good), I imagine how much better the idea of plants using vibration to mimic sound would work in print, nevertheless, the idea still fares very well on celluloid, even if it is slightly (and welcomingly) hokey. 

For a picture that is filled with what appears to be a soulless, youthful cast on the surface, the characters aren't total idiots and have a strong sense of depth as far as their relationships (or lack thereof) with each other goes. Also, the cast is actually comprised of some solid actors that have worked in films that I already love, as opposed to nobodies that are only there to look pretty and mope around with long grey faces and pouty lips, all upset that they ran out of hair gel (actually, I would be upset too). Speaking of pretty, it's ironic that the hot girl, Stacy, who shows off her nicely maintained body, is the one that seems to get the most physical (as well as mental) abuse out of the four main friends.

She's not necessarily the type of character that seems to be all about her looks thus making her painful plight enjoyable on a sadistic level for the warped viewer. Instead, it plays off the visual aspect of seeing a beautiful woman easily destroy her exterior to rid her body of these grotesque plants that are roaming free underneath her flesh. I know when I get a hangnail, I'll gnaw at that thing until I rip a piece of skin that stretches to my knuckle just to get rid of it (and where's my Oscar for best female performance?!). Sure, that's not really the same thing as plants rummaging around beneath your flesh, but if I'll chew a piece of skin from my finger to my elbow for a hangnail, imagine what I would do if I had a plant in my forehead?!


The Ruins has an interesting concept and is executed nicely on all fronts, but it's that self-mutilation and the few moments of horrific mutilation in general that make the film most memorable. Watching Stacy cut deeply into her own belly, claiming with a hint of madness that, "It's okay, I just have to get this one (of the plants) out," is quite grueling in such a wonderful way. I think this entire sequence is the most effective portion of the film, however, I cannot be lax in mentioning the double leg amputation from earlier in the film. This is where the mostly deteriorated legs of Mathias have to first be broken with a rock, the remaining flesh cut away with a pocketknife, then a screaming hot skillet is used to cauterize the wound. It's pretty intense. 

I don't want to overextend myself claiming that The Ruins is some masterpiece or anything more than what it actually is, but it is a very good-to-great body horror film, specifically for the time in which it came out and the type of film that it looked like it could be. It was all but ignored at the box office, unfortunately, and I don't think it will be anytime soon where people recognize it for what it is. Nevertheless, give this one a good ten-to-fifteen years, and I believe it may have the right stuff the be a minor cult classic for horror fans that are lucky enough to discover it.     

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