Saturday, 16 July 2011

New blog!

Hi followers!

As pregnancy is kinda chewing up my brain I have made a new blog! check it out!

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Look what they've done to my monsters......Mum...

I have been around and around and seen things, many things, wondrous thing, also things I would rather scrape out of my ever darkening psyche, I know I could have done without seeing a girls arse sewn to another girls arse… but then that is progress in film… isn’t it?

What have they really done to further the cause of the horrific monster? The demented demon? The vulgar Vampire?... ok enough with the analogies you get my point. Are monsters and creatures, even killers in film what they used to be? With the birth of CGI and the development of new programs to create worlds like we saw in Avatar you would think that the answer is a simple “of course”.
Focusing on my history in film and my understanding of Horror and creature films I took a stroll to way back when and started to see how films have changed……


Way back when: The silent, black and white Nosferatu… a horrid, ugly beast, wanting love and I think a manicure, honestly he just seemed to wander around the film with his claws exposed.

Then: Gary Oldman’s definitive role as Dracula, sexy, brooding… hell generally BAD ASS you follow this with the fantastic world of Lestat and Louis and we get the beginning of the sexy brooding “I must resist the temptation” vampire.

Now: Edward Cullen…. Come on, he fucking sparkles for god’s sake!?! How is that bad ass?! Yet he follows the formula does he not?

BUT: Take a look at Eric in True Blood, talk about sexy and bad ass, plus he provides a wonderful spike like counter balance to the terrible Bill.


Way back When: Wolfman, No dearies not the new one, the original, you know with the fake mask and weird hand gloves. Yes, not a great movie, but for its time; a paragon of the terror and sexuality of beast. 

Then: American Werewolf in London, this film shocked audiences with its realistic terror of the change from man to beast. The special effects alone were ahead of their time.

Now: Our dear shirtless Jacob, his name spread across teen breasts everywhere as he pants and lusts after Bella… though I have to admit, he is pretty bad ass. Add to that the loping dull production of the current Wolfman with Emily Blunt as the only saving grace in this otherwise borefest.

But: let us not forget our dear Oz, the beloved witty boyfriend of Willow… I am kinda clutching at straws here aren’t I…

Sea Monsters:

Way Back When: I know there are quite a few I could mention here, but I am going to stick to my all time favourite… THE KRACKEN. Possibly the only creature on the mystical earth I would think could kick Godzillas arse. We could even take a look further back here and mention the giant octopus from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea

Then: Jaws, Bruce terrorised the town of Amity Island and began a craze of freaked out summer swimmers… I know any time I hear the ominous sound I lift my toe out of the water.

Now:  The only recent activity I can mention here is the current Kracken… A thing of immense … CGIness…lame.

BUT: sadly I could not think of any recent Sea Monsters I loved, even the other Kracken in Pirates of the Caribbean was nothing but tentacles. I could give a fair mention to the bizarre Japanese tadpole creature from The Host I suppose.


Way Back When: I am going to go with some old school Romero and vote for Night of the Living Dead. A survival film of epic proportions, in most people’s opinions Romero created the fad for Zombies.

Then: Trying to step back from Romero in this category is difficult but let me try with Brain Dead or as the US called it Dead Alive. One of Peter Jackson’s first films and one of my go to comedy films, the monkey rat rape creature is a magnificent twist on zombie culture.

Now: Zombieland; in this category I think there is a definite display that holly-weird has it write on the nose. Not to mention the wonderful 28 Days Later, Shaun of the Dead, Day of the dead, Dawn of the Dead… too many!

But: No need for a BUT here, the genre is more than well represented in my view.

Hillbilly killahs:

Way back when: I mention this area simply because I want to talk about Texas Chainsaw Massacre. This film is still in my opinion one of the most looked over Horror’s. The first film to allow us a glimpse into sadistic back water in bred killers.

A very special mention; Deliverance “squeal like a pig boy” will forever be burned into my retina.

Then: I struggled to find a 90s Hillbilly Horror worth mentioning, other than a few random films.  It would seem the early noughties were the time for the rebirth of Hillbilly Killers.

Now: Devils Rejects and House of 1000 corpses in my mind dragged this genre right back onto the map and slapped it down hard. Zombie nailed these films to your forehead and demanded you watch.

While I have simply touched on a few of the monsters alive and well in film land I hope I have at least offered up an interesting vision of how it has all changed….in my opinion.

Madeleine is a black haired, tattooed budding writer, daughter of a director, Carer, lover, fighter, wife to be, sister  and of course... hard core Horror Fan Girl.
Check out my blog's at  The Mad Geek Girl Blog Spot

Saturday, 22 May 2010

One two Freddys..... not Freddy anymore

Remakes, you either love em or you hate em. They have their place, a way to drawn in a new class of viewer, granted a class that ignores the talent of the original work and thinks that the newer version is canon but still… a class of sorts. I for one am not always open minded about remakes, I have seen some classic re inventing of an old story, Halloween glowed with Rob’s treatment (until you watch the second one) and I am almost certain the Rodrigueze’s version of Predators but there have been more flops than not.
We are of course speaking here of the remake or as they put it “reimagining” of Nightmare on Elm Steet. I would imagine you could throw a stone and have trouble hitting anyone who has not heard of the original films, Anyone who knows the stories know that Cravens original creations have been done to death, with Freddy appearing in more than 11 movies some nailing it, some… well not. Consistently we have enjoyed at least, Robert Englunds iconic take on the sadistic and magical creation of Freddy Kruger, he first brought Kruger to our attention in 1984 busting onto the screen with tongues coming out of phones and wet dreams taking on a whole new vision. His trademark striped jumper and knife handed glove, cackle laugh and witty one liners, ripping the intestines out of dim witted sexually active teenagers, reaping his revenge for what was done to him. His boiler room reality fit with steam and fire matching his gruesome face and evil personality.  So having said all that you may think that I am a little too in Englunds camp, but I was more than willing to give Jackie Earl a go, I enjoyed him in Watchmen and thought he could redefine Freddy and perhaps welcome a new audience to the fabled terror of Elm Street.
The film started well and set us up in the world of Springwood, the Main characters are your fairly standard kids, cool and good looking; doing well to scream on cue and look scared of Freddy and his world, the parents doing a slightly better job at that rare art of acting, the appearance of Carnivale’s resident psycho priest was a nice treat as the Principal.
My problem in this film sadly was that I had a huge problem with the lack of charisma and wit even personality that was displayed. Freddy’s biggest calling card; that which separates him from Jason, Michael and the others, witty one liners and creepy slick attitude. Jackie lost that in this film, they obviously were going for a darker, slicker more realistic film and I appreciate that, but what I don’t appreciate is how boring they made Freddy. The one liner’s were there but Jackie tried too hard to deliver them, forcing it out rather than simply allowing himself to develop a new type of Freddy, either he or the producers wanted him to try to emulate Englunds performance and that was what killed it. I am certain that he tried his best with what he had to work with; they should have offered him the chance to make it his own, much like they did with the new Halloween.
I admit I almost fell asleep twice and was really quite bored until the end sequences where we finally started to get some decent narrative and imagery, though even with that I wanted more from that. I would have enjoyed once again what Rob did with Halloween and open up Fred Krugers world, peer inside and come out slightly more disgusted. Sadly however I was not offered that chance, it was a film that skimmed the edges and dipped its toe in without actually diving forward and trying to do something different.
I went in with my eyes open and was prepared for the worst, luckily it was not the worst but it certainly was not the best. My hat is still off to Wes and Englund, perhaps one day we will have someone who can pull the Nightmares forward but certainly not these films.

Friday, 16 April 2010

Bad Boys in Tweed

Sherlock Holmes Reviewed
I’ll admit it, I’m not a Guy Ritchie fan. I understand that a lot of people adore Lock Stock and Snatch, they were simply not my cup of tea, so when I heard he was doing Sherlock Holmes, it brought about the same kind of vomit inducing reaction as hearing that Russell Crowe is doing Robin Hood. Then the hateful gods of film piled Jude Law in there as well, HORROR, BLASPHEMY, BASTARDS and many other vile expressions were produced in my mind. While not a hard core, I have read every book Conan Doyle wrote I am a solid Holmes fan and was sitting in my highest state of judgement about the casting of this film.

Having convinced the man to ditch his family on Boxing Day (British public holiday after Christmas) we headed off with a tiny bit of hope that perhaps beloved return to screen star Jnr would manage to induce some joy out of this terrible adaption.

GOOD GOD WAS I WRONG!! from the first shot I was in love with this rip roaring, gun toting, pipe smoking, tweed wearing epic. To say that Arrow and I enjoyed this is to say that we think Indiana Jones was just ok, I was at the edge of my seat from the word go. Law totally blew my mind, stepping out of his usual sleazy back door acting he stepped up to the role of Watson with verve and style, playing beautifully against Jnr’s drug addled genius Holmes, my favourite parts being where you would see how Holmes mind plots out each move during a fight.

Mc Addams though as much as I adore her was overtaken by Jnr in any scene they were in, she in my opinion struggled to compete with him, She did her best to stand with them all and in some ways held her own but her performance was mostly watered down, I had the thought that Rachel Wiez may have done better but that could have been because of the similarities to the Mummy. Mark Strong was fabulous as the slimey villain Lord Blackwood ( a nod to the earlier novels of Conan Doyle) His manner and utter Britishness gave him such a great presence amongst the madness of Holmes. The Fan girl in me begged for more on Moriaty and the small snippets we were given were met with gasps from Arrow and I and absolutely left us with a desire to see the second film.

Visually this film is total eye candy, from the fantastic views of the Thames to the sweeping streets of 1800s England met with the dark back alleys of the boxing houses. A glorious fan girl squeal issued forth when the camera settled on 221B Baker st, full with the mad meanderings of Holmes, that poor dog!

Overall I take my hat off, eat humble pie and generally grovel at Ritchies feet begging him for forgiveness, my initial fears were completely wiped out. This film bought me back to Indie and the mummy, epic films with great characters and fantastic stories. I would highly recommend this to everyone of all ages, huge fans or not it is a feast of a film and fabulous fun!

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Talking with my mother about Iron Man 2

The following is a rather amusing conversation I had with my mother this morning...

Me: Have you seen the trailer for Iron Man 2 yet?
Mum: OOH no, is it good? the first one was wonderful

Me: Yeah it looks great, though they have screwed up Black Widow slightly for me
Mum: Who?

Me: Scarlett Johansen s character in the film
Mum: Oh is she in the film? terrible actress

Me: yup, she plays the Black Widow a character from the comics
Mum: Is there an Iron Man Comic?

Mum: What? *laughs* I dont know

Me: Yes he is in a comic, he is one of the Avengers, well used to be... its hard to explain.
Mum: Who are the Avengers?

Me: A team in the comics *tries to think of someone she would know* Captain America and Spiderman are in it
Mum:Oh I never liked Captain America, but I like the Spiderman movies

Me: *sigh*
Mum: what dont be mean, you know I am silly about these things.

Me: Its ok, your lucky your not talking to Chris about it *laughs* (chris being Final Arrow)
Mum: why?

Me: Cause he would get mad at you
Mum: never he loves me

Me: ok *laughs*
Mum: Anyway why dont you like Scarlett in Iron Man

Me: the character Black Widow is a Russian, she does not have a Russian accent
Mum: oh, well thats silly, now you have ruined it for me

Me: *laughing* sorry but it does look good
Mum: Oh good, oh who was Samuel L Jackson being at the end of the first film

Me: Nick Fury
Mum: Who?


Saturday, 27 March 2010

Mad Redhead on Kick-Ass

My film-dar has vanished this year, normally I am pretty good at calling whether or not a film is going to suck or rock, sometimes of course I am pleasantly surprised but most of the time I get it on the nose. This year my judgements have been totally off, completely vanished even, were I thought Alice in Wonderland would be another Tim Burton flop it was a winner and where I thought Kick-Ass would be a wonderful cult romp it fell on its well.. Ass.

From the moment that we were introduced to the characters I was excited, after having seen the trailer for Clash of the Titans (my eccentric taste in gigantic movie monsters ran rampant) I was in a good mood, ready for entertainment. I have tried hard to work out what exactly it was that made it so dull for me, there sitting at the directors feet was a wonderful list of characters, a fairly composite story and a couple of seasoned actors to help carry the young ones along. I had expected so much more from Vaughn, the producer of Lock Stock, Mean Machine and Snatch and the director of Stardust, seemed to have such a wonderful sense of the ridiculous. Obviously he has been sitting at Guy Ritchies feet far too long and had picked up his inability to get a film moving without guns and blood.

I could happily sit here and go on about the inanely boring narrative, the slow moving direction and the inability to draw out of his actors a glimmer of excitement for their characters but I will simply tell you this, go see it if you are ready for the comic to be better.
I have read reviews recently proclaiming its “originality” its “shock factor” it’s “up yours to the superhero genre” It is nothing new, we saw a young girl with a gun in Leon, we have seen the average man being a hero in The Greatest American Hero (granted he had a special power suit) and as an up yours to the Superhero genre I can kind of see but mostly it just seemed like a wank fest for all the comic fan boys who have ever thought they could be Batman.

Right, enough of the bashing I will take a moment to talk about what I did love about the film, I loved Hit Girl, she did her best with what she had they could have given her so much more, it often felt like they held right back on her, for fear of truly pushing the boundaries of having a young girl swearing and killing. Kick-Ass was wonderfully cast; perfect blend of kind of cute geek boy and complete pussy was used to create a character I would imagine teenage boys could relate to. The action sequences were reminiscent and I think homage to John Woo with slow moving air running, guns blazing, I did laugh when Big Daddy was questioning Hit Girl and asked her what the first movie John Woo directed was.

The film lacked for me, I wanted more, I wanted better narrative and better direction, this is more Swept Away and less Stardust, try harder Mr Vaughn.