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Upgrading To Blu-ray

Posted by Player under MovieComment

Batman: The Dark KnightIn December, I unwrapped my new Playstation 3 and moved my Playstation 2 to my son’s room. Once connected to both my receiver and LCD TV, it was official, I now had a perfectly good Blu-ray player and could finally bask in full progressive 1080 pixels! In a sense this editorial is not about reviewing the Playstation 3, as much as it is about the current state of Blu-ray and why it can be a truly awesome experience or an expensive disappointment. Even now, a full five weeks of owning a Playstation 3, I have yet to play one game on it. It has been exclusively used for playing movies.

Best Blu-ray Movie Ever!

Without a doubt, if you have a Blu-ray player you absolutely need to get a copy of Batman: The Dark Knight. Warner Bros did an excellent job of presenting The Dark Knight on the Blu-ray platform. What is apparent is of course the excellent display and detail on 1080 progressive resolution. What you don’t get right away is the spectacular sound you get once the film gets going. The audio completely blew me away and is dramatically better than standard DVD. I am almost tempted to blow another $75 on The Matrix Trilogy again, to hear how much better it is on Blu-ray. My initial impression of the audio quality was again reinforced when I reviewed HellBoy: The Golden Army, which to my immediate delight comes with a DTS Audio track.

Blu-ray Library Disappointing?

Although I already have six Blu-ray movies in my collection, I have to say that the availability of Blu-ray choices is actually quite slim. Sure there are around 1,092 Blu-ray discs available now, but in reality, if you have a decent DVD collection already, you are not going to go out and replace your perfectly good DVD films with $30 Blu-rays any time soon. Instead you will probably look for new movies releases on Blu-ray or old films that are being restored and released on Blu-ray as well as DVD. In essence, the Blu-ray selection out there seems to be about thirty Blu-rays, out of which you might consider getting ten. The sticker shock of $30 discs is also not helping consumers upgrade to Blu-ray. Right now you can go dumpster diving at Wal-Mart and pick some decent $5 DVDs. Wal-Mart has no such bargain bin for Blu-ray and so until that happens Blu-ray will have a limited consumer appeal.

Other than bargain movies, Blu-ray needs action and sci-fi movies that really push the platform. There are only two big genres that are popular with everyone, your action movie and your comedies. Though I did pick a copy of The House Bunny, I really could not see much a difference between the cheaper DVD and more expensive Blu-ray. This means, that Blu-ray needs to really show case more releases like Batman and less comedies like Pineapple Express, or at the very least discount comedies to make them more on par with their DVD prices. Blu-ray seems to have great technology, but it is a platform starved for content and unless it can bring down prices quickly, then Internet delivered movies from iTunes and other such services will supplant the platform and make Blu-ray seem like yesterday’s Laser disc.


Meet The Spartans

Posted by Player under MovieComment

Meet The SpartansSometimes, you just feel like relaxing and watching something totally silly and that where pretty much Meet The Spartans fits into your movie watching schedule. There really has not been a good spoof comedy since The Wayans Brothers did Scary Movie, that is until now. Unlike all the other crappy spoofs out there that totally suck, Meet The Spartans actually is funny and manages to entertain by aiming most of its jokes at the original movie 300. While 300 was this macho tale of brave Spartan soldiers that came off as too over the top to even approach being a good film, Meet The Spartans brings everything down a few notches and makes fun of muscle bound Spartans, teen idol celebs like Britney and Paris Hilton, and manages to make you laugh at how silly some of the actual scenes in 300 really are. There are some misses though, where the movie tries too hard but overall the entire spoof works very well if you you have seen 300.

However, Meet The Spartans is rather short for a recent film and could be proof that you can only make so many jokes about another film that you are spoofing, and even then the movie is not as original as Scary Movie. For more hilarious 300 spoofing, check out the South Park episode D-Yikes!.

3 out 5 stars


Basic Instinct 2 Trailor

Posted by GardenHead under MovieComment

Basic Instinct 2Okay not much to say about this one that isn’t already out there. You put out a hard R trailor, (do not open up this vid at work!) to generate the buzz that a fifteen year old sequel starring a 50 year old Sharon Stone; the reason being I guess to show that even at the half century mark Ms. Stone’s breasts seem to still maintain a cheerleader type perkiness, and if all that is all you have going for a movie, then well you got the fine makings of an Skinamax Andrew Stevens like crapfest.

After watching the trailor, you really don’t get a sense of what the movie is about, yes Stone’s character still likes dangerous sex and to flash her cooter at a room. She still gets turned on by chicks, and works herself into a tither by taking a wicked looking ice pick to a big block of ass, er I mean ice.

Now Sharon Stone has proved that she is a talented actress. Her turn in Casino was an inspired piece of acting. And in Hollywood once you reach a certain age the roles start to come less and less, so maybe Ms. Stone is taking a risk with this one, and maybe it will be good, or maybe it’ll be another Sliver, guess we get to wait to see!


Mix Tapes Part Deux…

Posted by GardenHead under MovieComment

“I will kill you till you are dead from it!” (HotShots anyone? Ah Saddam, how you used to make me laugh…)

Okay this might rob me of my “street cred” nonetheless I admit, to having totally overlooked this guy.

Thankfully it was SPIKETV that turned me onto the brilliance of “Beat” Takeshi Kitano.

The SPIKE show Most Extreme Elimination Challenge, is frackin’ hilarious! I for one cannot get enough of watching large-ish Asian women bang their poor bodies off of a couple of big rollers before doing a face plant in a big pile of mud, or toxic ooze as they say on the show. When watching the show I could not help but wonder who in the corn bread hell is this Vic “Right you are Ken” Romano guy? If like me you are on the short bus, and behind the curve on this dude, let me tell you Takeshi is as great as a film maker as anyone making films in America right now.

I’m gonna wax on just a couple of Kitano’s recent films Kikujiro,and Zatoichi.

When I saw the box for 1999’s Kikujiro, a story about a guy taking a trip with a young boy the first thought that came to mind was that icky Al Bundy vehicle, Dutch, which if you haven’t seen, don’t cos it really really sucked. But I really dug the whole SPIKE thing, so I gave Kikujiro a chance. Watching this movie reminded me of all the reasons I like foreign comidies. Don’t get me wrong, I love the hyper-kinetic energy of Vince Vaughn, praticulairly in Wedding Crashers, where he seemed wound so tight he was about to explode, but the whole Adam Sandler yelling thing is not comedy, it’s crap. And when you take in a character driven comedy like Kikujiro, it really shows you a film that works on so many different levels, it’s sweet, sad, dark, funny, and innocent, and when someone in Kikujiro yells it has meaning behind it, and not shtick.

Zatoichi is a different bit of film making. This is a remake of the Blind Swordsman series of t.v. shows from back in the 1960’s. Watching a film like Zatoichi reminds you of who’s shoulders Tarantino was standing on when he concieved his great Kill Bill movies If you don’t mind your over the top violence and bucket upon bucket of splattered blood paired with interesting character driven conflict and “a plot” than watch this film with your buddies. If you like your stuff a bit fluffy but can still digest some adult themes smattered with a a well made dissertation on play and innocence then kikujiro is for you. But I think you should watch both films, cos they on my list, holla!