Posts Tagged ‘retro reviews’

Retro Review: The Breakfast Club

This review originally appeared at brenthanson.net on May 16, 2004

Movie
I can’t talk about The Breakfast Club without sounding like I have a non-sexual man crush on John Hughes. I’m not exactly sure if this is my favorite 80’s movie, but its probably the most fun to watch. They’ll replay this on TBS probably about 5-10 times a month (just a guess), and if I see it on, I’ll drop everything and watch the end of the movie. I’m still amazed that until this year, I had actually never seen the start of this movie.
Five high schools who have little to do with each other are forced to spend a Saturday in detention in the school library with only Principal Richard Vernon (Paul Gleason) to supervise them. Among the five students are the jock Andy (Emilio Estevez), the nerd Brian (80’s legend Anthony Michael Hall), the bad kid John Bender (Judd Nelson), the popular girl Claire (Molly Ringwald), and the outcast Allison (Ally Sheedy). At the beginning of the day, the five want absolutely nothing to do with each other. By the end of the day, they have a complete understanding for each other even though they may not go on to be the best of friends throughout the rest of their high school careers. Their day together in detention has taught them that even though they come from different backgrounds, they still are much more similar than they could have ever imagined.
I think the real beauty about this movie is the characters. As stereotypical as they might be, they all are very easy for almost anyone to relate to. I even found that as I grew older, I started to even feel sympathetic towards the principal and the janitor. Even if you yourself was more like Claire (the Molly Ringwald character) or Andy (the Mighty Ducks guy), you can still relate to both the nerdy Brian and the tough guy Bender.


Video & Sound
While it “looks good for an 80’s flick”, I definitely wouldn’t hold the re-release of the Breakfast Club up next to any of the new stuff being released on DVD these days. It is presented in anamorphic widescreen and it’s good enough that you can throw away your copy on VHS. The sound, while presented in DTS and Dolby DIgital 5.1, is average at best. You’ll never hear Simple Minds “Don’t Forget About Me” sound better, though!


Extras
Nope… nothing other than trailers for the other John Hughes movies.


Closing Thoughts…
You’re not going to find a nicer slice of 80’s nostalgia than this! I’d imagine almost everyone has at least flipped through this movie on TBS at least once. If you’re a fan of the 80’s, you’ve gotta buy this up on DVD!


Movie – 8
Video & Sound – 5
Extras – 0
Overall – 6

18

10 2012

Retro Review: Hoop Dreams

This review was originally published on brenthanson.net on May 17, 2005

People always say to me, “when you get to the NBA, don’t forget about me.” Well, I should’ve said back, “if I don’t make it to the NBA, don’t you forget about me.”

Movie
Back in 1994, a documentary was released that changed the way that documentaries are viewed. Arthur Agee and William Gates are two of the top 8th graders from the Chicago inner-city who are both recruited to play at St. Joseph’s High School. As the former high school of Isiah Thomas, St. Joe’s is a perennial state power made up of predominantly white kids. The story that unfolds is greater than the filmmakers could have ever predicted. Instead of being a basketball movie, Hoop Dreams turns into a beautiful portrait of two poverty-stricken families who have all sorts of problems. Both Arthur and William have issues with their father – William’s father is all but absent in his life and Arthur’s father might be the most disappointing father’s in movie history. The most memorable scene in the entire movie is a scene where Arthur’s father buys crack within eyesight of Arthur who was playing streetball at the time.
Hoop Dreams is great because every kid can relate to having dreams of playing a professional sport. As that dream starts to fade, priorities fade. The drama that both families go through is interesting and engaging. William becomes a father while still in high school. He struggles to attempt to pass the ACT test. He misses two free throws that would’ve clinched a playoff victory. He undergoes knee problem after knee problem. His brother Curtis, who played college basketball, tries to live his dreams through him. Arthur’s father struggles with drug problems and leaves the family more than once. His mother has problem with money and even gets the power to their apartment gets cut off. His family isn’t able to make payments at the private school so he gets kicked out of school and has to transfer to a city school. He needs to take summer school nearly every year of high school in order to graduate.

Video & Sound
Hoop Dreams was one of the first documentaries to be shot on video. The movie was released theatrically in a widescreen aspect, but it is presented here in the original 1.33:1 format. The video quality looks very average, but it’s much improved from my nearly 10-year old copy on VHS. Considering the source format, this is probably as good as the film ever could possibly look. The sound is also presented in the original 2.0 Dolby track. While it’s not as fancy as your new Matrix dvd, it fits the movie just fine.

Extras
Criterion dvd’s are always worth the extra schillings. The best extra feature is the commentary featuring Arthur Agee and William Gates. Hearing their side of the story is more than interesting. If you are a fan of this movie, listening to this commentary track should almost be required. Both William and Arthur have wonderful stories and different takes on how things are presented in the scene. One example of this would be when William talks to Coach Pingatore after the season. Ping, as he’s called, tells William he had a good career but not a great career. Williams then points out that he’s second in all-time scoring to Isiah and first in 3-point attempts and 3-point percentage. Both William and Arthur have matured and are able to look at their teenage years through a more objective eye. This really is my favorite commentary track I’ve ever listened to.
The next commentary features the filmmakers – Peter Gilbert, Steve James, and Frederick Marx. It’s very interesting because they talk about choosing the two families along with the joys and difficulties to become almost a member of the families. They realize that they got lucky the story turned out the way it did, but they also had done their research. You can tell this is a very personal piece to each of them. They talk for the whole three hours and I’d be willing to bet they could talk for three hours more.
One feature that’s really worth watching is the Siskel and Ebert piece. I never realized it, but Hoop Dreams was Roger Ebert’s choice for the greatest movie of the 90’s. It was the number one movie of 1994 (the year Shawshank Redemption, Forrest Gump, Pulp Fiction, Quiz Show was released) for both of them. In the feature, they review the movie. Later on, they talk about the drama over Hoop Dreams being left off of both the Best Picture and the best Documentary nominees.
Also included is a 40-some page booklet feature reviews and essays about the movie. My favorite essay is one written by the filmmakers which is kind of a “where are they now” piece.

Closing Thoughts
If this movie were fiction, it probably wouldn’t be believable. The movie runs nearly three hours, but the time seems to fly. I watched this movie on Saturday afternoon then watched the Arthur/William commentary for the whole movie the next day. Monday, I wanted to watch it again, so I watched the filmmakers’ commentary. It truly is one of the greatest movies of the 90’s and the fact that it didn’t win the best documentary Oscar in 1994 is truly one of the greatest crimes in the history of the Academy Awards. You don’t have to be a basketball fan to enjoy this movie. If you are a basketball fan and you haven’t seen this movie, you are robbing yourself of one of the greatest movie watching experiences ever.

Overall Scores
Movie – 10
Video & Sound – 4
Extras – 8
Overall – 9

27

09 2012

Retro Review – The Warriors

I’ve got 100s of movie reviews in the can from. Over the next few weeks, I hope to reintroduce my “Guilty Pleasure Movies” to Motion Artifacts. In the mean time, here’s a review for one of my favorite fantastically terrible movies from 2010

The Warriors is an interesting movie. It’s seemingly never on cable yet it has every quality that a good TBS movie has. It’s insanely re-watchable. Nobody tied to the movie went on to do anything worth watching. Seriously… the main character Swan went on to do bit parts in “Walker Texas Ranger” and “Murder She Wrote.” Cyrus (Roger Hill) has been in exactly two movies. David Patrick Kelly is almost a “that guy” in movies… but not quite. Ajax went on to be Harry in the tv show “Dexter.” The best career from an entire movie goes to a guy that gets sixth bill on a cable show that is great but gets 25% of the ratings as the Sopranos.

Anyway, it’s one of my favorite bad movies. I can’t explain everything I love about this movie, but I can assure you if I would’ve seen the tv-version when I was 12 years old, it would’ve been a longtime favorite. Why is it movies that you know are terrible can be completely enjoyable? (See: “Surviving the Game”… no seriously, you should see it.) I’m trying to doing one of these

0:01 – My first thought from the first time I watched this movie was how weird this music was. Upon subsequent viewings, I’ve gotta say that the music has grown on me to the point where it’s possibly my favorite music from a movie ever. If you listen to my podcast, you’ve probably figured out I enjoy the music of the Warriors, though.

0:06 – My favorite gang idea that’s not in the movie – a black cowboy gang. Kind of like Larry Fishborne on the Pee Wee Herman Show. How great would it have been if there was in the scene in the movie where some black guy with a jheri curl with a cowboy hat and a mouthful of chaw says “…you boys ain’t from around here, are ya?” By the way, if you ever look up “jheri curl” on Google Images, you get what is quite possibly the best collection of images on the entire internet. I challenge anyone to show me a page that tops it…

0:09 – Cyrus has to have the most memorable 3 minutes of screen time in the history of cinema. It’s possibly my favorite part of the movie and yet he’s dead in a matter of moments. On a side note, I think I’m going to start to add the word “suckas” behind every fifth sentence. Just because.

0:10 – Our first “…can you dig iiiiiiiittttttttttttttttttt” of the movie. As great as I remember it.

0:12 – I’m surprised this speech hasn’t been used for the intro of a big football game… especially talking about “turf” and staying together. Somebody could splice this together nicely.

0:13 – Nevermind… I guess Cyrus lasted 4 minutes.

0:14 – Another sidenote… I want a list of every relevant movie made in NYC in the 70s and 80s. Aren’t 90% of them enjoyable? If nothing else, I really dig the feeling of late 70s New York.

0:15 – Maybe this “one gang” to rule them all theory was never going to work in the first place. After the very first bit of conflict, a thousand of people are running every which direction and the Warriors are public enemy number one because one random guy with terrible hair said “The Warriors did it!” If all it takes is one person to say “he did it” to corrupt and entire justice system (albeit vigilante justice), maybe Cyrus’s plan wasn’t so prolific.

0:17 – One of my ten favorite lines of the movie that sounds retarded if I try to say. They’re asking if anyone has seen Cleon. “I seen him then he wasn’t there no more. I was hauling ass.”

0:18 – Another reason this might not have been the best idea ever… not exactly rocket scientists running the gangs. They were meeting in Central Park. They’re from Coney Island. They claim it’s 50 miles. Google Maps thinks it’s more like 20.

0:19 – For the record, here are my favorite things to come out of Coney Island. 1) The Warriors. 2) “The Last Shot” by Darcy Frey. 3) Jesus Shuttlesworth. 4) “The Jump” (book about Sebastian Telfair). 5) Lou Gossett Jr. 6) Marv Albert’s “Yes” call. 1,753,942) Stephon Marbury’s head tattoo.

0:20 – My wife and I recently had a baby girl. Had we had a boy, though, I would’ve been completely fine with using any of the names of the Warriors for my son. My favorite, obviously, is Cleon Hanson. If Cleon Hanson wasn’t the captain of Bill Simmons’ “Reggie Cleveland All-Stars”, I don’t know who is.

0:21 – If this movie was made in 1999 instead of 1979, there is a chance that we would have gotten a sequel. More important than the sequel, though… we probably would’ve gotten an eventual spinoff movie on the Gramercy Riffs. If you haven’t seen the movie, the Riffs are THE single coolest gang I’ve ever seen in my life. Two side notes here… first, if I was black, I dress for Halloween as a member of the Gramercy Riffs every single year. Second – if any team ever plays the Golden State Warriors in the playoffs, they’ve gotta splice this scene up so it says the following:
“Who are the Warriors? I want them all. I want all the Warriors. I want them alive if possible. If not… wasted. But I want them. Send the word.”

0:22 – I love two things about the radio dj scenes. First of all, the radio dj is the Chief from “Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego” (is that game still around… it should be). Second, I love the term “boppers.” Can we bring that term back?

0:26 – These gang names are incredibly cool. “The Turnbull ACs.” Sounds like a Premier League soccer team. Which reminds me… a gang of soccer hooligans would make for a great Warriors gang. It’d be even better if they had a chip on their shoulder because nobody in America cares about soccer (except for me… haven’t hardly missed a World Cup game thanks to my daughters morning feedings).

0:31 – Another top ten line of the movie. “Hey – what about the money you owe?” “FOR WHAT?!?!”

0:32 – The Orphans! How freaking creative is this movie. A gang of misfits/homeless. I love that the leader looks like a skinny Zach Braff.

0:34 – Another classic (but under the radar) line. “The Orphans right? Yeah… our youth worker talks about you guys all the time.”

0:40 – “You see what you get when you mess with the orphans?” “We’re gonna rain on you Warriors!” 30 seconds later, a car explodes (nobody is presumably injured), but the Warriors are home free. This is the movie equivalent of guaranteeing a victory followed by getting thumped.

0:46 – My absolute highlight of the movie. The Baseball Furies. If you haven’t seen the Warriors, the Baseball Furies are a gang that dress like a combination of Kiss and the New York Yankees. They obviously aren’t super effective, but they are the coolest gang in the movie (with all due respect to the gang that rolls around in rollerskates and striped sweaters at the end of the movie). A few years ago we saw “Freddy vs. Jason”. In my dream world, we’ll one day see “Riffs vs. Furies.”

0:49 – Another classic line “I’ll shove that bat up your *** and turn you into a popsicle.” The only way this could be cooler would be if it was spoken by Christopher Walken.

0:54 – Zero percent chance a scene like this could be put into a modern movie. One of the guys thinks to himself ‘hmm… I might go force myself on this lady sitting on a park bench by myself.’

1:00 – Another classic scene. The black/Indian looking guy in the Warrior says “Chicks like you always have dudes around.”

1:04 – I love it when bad movies get preachy. Swan tells Mercy “I don’t like the way you live… I don’t think you know who you get on Friday night.” Less than 45 seconds later, he’s making out with her.

1:05 – This isn’t necessarily related to the Warriors, but have you noticed that every movie/picture you’ve seen from the 70s, 95% of the people were skinny. There are a thousand fad diets. Don’t eat this. Don’t eat that. I’m going to start a new fad diet called “Would the Bee Gees have eaten this?”

1:08 – Long before Tila Tequilla was around to warp our sense of sexuality/lesbians, we had pop culture references like the Warriors that paint lesbians as a whole as a militant bunch. I don’t necessarily think that’s the case, but at the same time, I miss the reference. In the same way, I’m glad that USA and Russia now get along, but I miss Russia being the bad guy in all of the Cold War movies of the 80s. Can you imagine how much Rocky 4 would’ve sucked if they made it in 2010 and it wasn’t Rocky vs. Ivan Drago and the whole empire of Russia (steroids and all!)

1:11 – Hell yeah! It’s the gang of bib overalls and skates. I’ve honestly seen this movie about 50 times (all within the last five years) and I get giddy every time these guys come on the screen.

1:13 – Love this part. Mercy points out that the guys with the skates are after Swan. He says “I know they’re on my ass. Now they know I know.”

1:17 – Modern movies may have all of the CGI and cool effects in the world. I’ll take a fight with baseball bats in a bathroom any day. Guys going through mirrors and breaking porcelain toilets just feels more authentic than John Cena or Rampage Jackson fighting while hanging out of a helicopter. I suppose to each his own, though.

1:20 – This would be legitimately scary. You’re out on a date. Dressed up in your fancy clothes. You look up and there are a bunch of tough looking people that are bloodied and bruised not talking to each other but staring right at you. I’d get off on the very next stop, too.

1:24 – Signature moment in the movie. “Warriors… come out toooo pllllaayyyyyyyy.” If the Golden State Warriors don’t somehow have this incorporated into their pre-game intros, they are the dumbest franchise in the history of the universe.

1:28 – Luther, who is supposed to be the toughest of tough guys ever, is taken out because Swan throws a knife which sticks into his wrist. I’m talking completely incapacitated. I’m not calling him a pansy, but I’ve seen ultimate fighters go five rounds with two broken hands and continue after getting kicked square in the balls. This is maybe revisionist history, but maybe Luther wasn’t a very tough guy at all. He’s maybe the Robin Ventura of modern cinema.

18

09 2012

Retro Review – Speed

I’ve got 100s of movie reviews in the can from. Over the next few weeks, I hope to reintroduce my “Guilty Pleasure Movies” to Motion Artifacts. In the mean time, here’s a review for one of my favorite fantastically terrible movies from 2010

I’m starting a new here tradition on the brentnet blog. My goal is eventually for fans of bad movies, like myself, to say that my monthy Guilty Pleasure movies is a tradition unlike no others… even more so than the Masters.

The other day, I found myself trying to sit through another “award winning” movie. From my own personal experience, about 1/3 of the “critically acclaimed” movies are awesome in a surreal “Hey, I know we just finished that movie, but lets watch it again” kind of way. Another 1/3 are completely watchable, but you get that feeling in your gut that a movie was overrated. The last 1/3 are complete bombs… nothing is happening in the movie. I’m supposed to enjoy the artful arc of the movie and the characters. Instead, I find myself looking at my watching wondering if I should even bother finishing the film.

It was just the other day I realized something. I really like a good movie like the Departed or the Godfather, but at the end of the day, I think I enjoy bad movies more than I enjoy good movies. It makes some amount of sense. “Scarface” has sat atop my leader board as favorite movie for nearly 10 years now. It’s an extremely enjoyable movie, but it definitely has some “bad movie” qualities. So, in honor of my love for bad movies, I’ve decided that once a month, I’m going publish a blog entry on a new bad movie. Now, some of these movies are technically considered worse than others. But at the end of the day, they’re all enjoyable and if they are on TNT on a random Wednesday night, I’m not gonna change the channel.

A little history on our first Guilty Pleasure/Bad movie Speed. It was on of the first R-rated movies that my parents openly let me watch. I was at my buddy Cory’s house. We were watching previews for movies on DirecTV (which is how we also became the first people in our area to see Office Space) and decided that Speed looked good. It was rated R, but according to the guide, it was rated R for AC, AS, AL, V, and probably a few other consonants and vowels. Most importantly, at least to our moms, was it wasn’t rated R for “N.” After a call to my mom and much discussion, it was ruled that Speed was a-okay for our impressionable eyes to be watching. I honestly don’t think I’ve seen the movie since that day in 1994. So, I’ve  With all that introduction, I’ve decided for my first bad movie, I’m going to do a running diary.

0:01 – Forgot how good this movie theme is. Dum dum… dum dum dum dum. I don’t know if it was intentional or not, but the movie industry in general has taken two gigantic steps back as far as movie scoring is considered.

0:04 – Being a security guard in a movie with a crazed lunatic. It has to be up there with working at a slaughterhouse or working in the logging industry as one of the most dangerous jobs possible. And to think… he even opened the door, closed the door halfway, but opened it again when he thought he saw something. Big mistake. I remember thinking he was going to get shot rather than getting a knife to the side of the ear the first time I saw this one. Four minutes in and we’ve got our first casualty.

0:05 – The smartass who says “Thanks for pushing that Bob. The light is on, but it really might be broken” looks like a younger, less pumpkin-headed John Mayer.

0:06 – Bomb just goes off in the elevator shaft. I forgot how crappy special effects were in the era when they started to use computers, but really weren’t good at using computers yet (somewhere around 1991-2001). Keanu Reeves and Jeff Daniels come flying over a hill in a squad car a la Ferris Bueller’s Day Off thus telling us the viewer “Hey… think what you want of police officers in general, but these two gentleman are renegades.” By the way, someone add getting air off a jump in a speeding car onto my bucket list.

0:07 – Here’s a shocker… just checked Wikipedia and it informed me that Keanu Reeves doesn’t have a high school diploma. How can a guy responsible for delivering such fantastic dialogue such as “I am an EFF BEE EYE AGENT!”, “Whoa. Déjà vu,” and “Shoot the hostage” has less education than me? I’d have never guessed.

0:11 – Our first “pop quiz.” Plus… we’ve got my favorite line in the entire movie. “Shoot the hostage.” If I ever went to school to be a cop (even if I was a bad guy pretending to be a cop like in “The Departed”), I’d answer at least one question in class “…shoot the hostage” if for no reason other than to get the teacher riled up.

0:14 – You know the friend you has that thinks he wouldn’t make any of the mistakes that other people make. Like, when a big man blows an easy layup costing his team the game, he’s the first guy to say “…even I could make THAT shot.” This guy does this usually holds quite the high opinion of himself in many regards. He can sing better than the guy on American Idol, he could be funnier than the standup comedian that you’re watching on tv, and he could beat just about everyone at a reality show Survivor or Real World/Road Rules Challenge event. 99.9% of the time he’s wrong. Except when he says “I could do a better acting job than Keanu Reeves.”

0:17 – Is it bad that I kind of which the mousey old lady who didn’t want a hand out of the elevator would’ve went down with the ship a la the captain of the Titanic?

0:20 – Our first showdown between good and bad. This is exactly like when DeNiro and Pacino are on the screen together for the first time in Heat… except the exact opposite.

0:22 – Jeff Daniels has done a lot of serious acting. As of when I’m writing this, he’s appeared in about 67 movies. Does it say more about me or more about Jeff Daniels that if I had to pick three of his movies to watch over and over again on a desert island, I’d pick “Speed,” “Dumb and Dumber,” and “Arachnophobia.”

0:23 – If I would’ve watched this for the first time at the age of 28 instead of at the age of 13, I would’ve thought the “Shoot the Hostage” bit would come into play in the last 10 minutes of the movie. Even I’m shocked by this one.

0:26 – Whoa… don’t remember this line. But it’s a classic. “Guts will get you so far and then they’ll get you killed.” Can we find a way to insert this into any so-so action flick that doesn’t take itself too seriously kind of like the Wilhelm Scream?

0:29 – I know 24 is getting cancelled. Are we 100% sure that we couldn’t reinvent the show with Keanu Reeves? Let’s take the last episode… Jack finally catches it. Next year, Jack’s slacker long lost brother Brody (Reeves) comes back to fill in his normal duties. Picture Keanu Reeves screaming “Dammit Chloe! Where are the schematics?!?” Tell me that you wouldn’t tune in for at least a few episodes of that.

0:30 – Why did I think the bus had to go below 55 miles an hour instead of what it actually is – 50? Guess having not seen a movie in 16 years will do that to you, huh?

0:31 – Sandy B makes her first appearance. She’s playing the role of Sandra Bullock which is the same role she’s been playing in every movie she’s been in for the past 16 years. I don’t consider myself a Sandy B fan, but she is in four movies I’ll list as movies I enjoy (Demolition Man, Speed, Crash, and The Blind Side)

0:34 – Another bucket list item – driving though speeding traffic on a highway using the median and the right lane that isn’t actually a lane.

0:38 – Keanu informs the bus driver that there is a bomb on the bus and is then surprised when the bus driver slows down. Does anyone else find this reaction the bus driver has as completely not surprising?

0:40 – Keanu boards the bus. While jumping towards the door, he leaves himself a little short which causes his legs to drag on the ground. Of course, this doesn’t rip him from the bus causing him to get run over by the rear tires and probably the car following the bus as you’d expect. Nope. His immaculate upper body strength powers him onto the bus where he calmly whispers for the bus driver to keep it above fifty as a somewhat bitchy Sandra Bullock pressures him to find out what is going on.

0:41 – Here’s a shocker. The kid with the goatee who’ve they’ve shown no less than three times so far makes a move for Keanu by pulling a revolver on him. And to think, I just thought they were showing random shots of the same kid over and over again.

0:42 – Are you kidding me? Alan Ruck (aka Cameron Frye from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off) is in this movie?!? How do I not possibly remember this?!? If he has a decent sized part in this movie and I didn’t remember this, I’m going to be quite upset at myself.

0:43 – After the driver gets accidently shot, Bullock takes over. She decides to inform Keanu that she’s taking the bus because she had her license revoked… for speeding. I’m sure when I was 13, this completely went over my head, but have you or anyone you’ve ever met ever had a license revoked for speeding. Have you ever heard such a thing? It’s a rated R movie… why can’t Bullock just say she was driving drunk or caused a death or something? Although – true story – I once did have my license revoked (and didn’t know it) for not paying a parking ticket.

0:46 – Keanu’s classic line. “Eff Me.” Alan Ruck translates it as “Oh Darn.” I bet my buddy Cory and I said those two lines for two weeks after first watching this movie. How did I not know Cameron was in Speed?

0:47 – Interesting how they show the bus going 51 miles per hour. The bus then proceeds to hit a water barrier and multiple cars. Lucky for us, the bus defies the odds and doesn’t slow down a single mile per hour.

0:52 – Have they done a Mythbusters on this theory? Placing everyone on one side of the bus prevents it from tipping over? It seems like they must have.

0:57 – Random thought – it’s weird to see people on a bus without cellphones or iPod earbuds in.

0:59 – After getting the driver successfully off the bus, the lady who doesn’t listen to Keanu tries to sneak off the bus and gets it. Like I was wishing on the lady in the elevator earlier. The moral of the story? When Keanu speaks, we must treat it as the gospel!

1:01 – Alright, it’s becoming apparent that Alan Ruck is the main supporting character on the bus… besides of course Annie (aka Sandra Bullock). Not only does this movie completely reek of cheese, but the editing is done in a way that the voices don’t match the lip movement. It’s like playing a game on the first PlayStation.

1:03 – While drive at above 50 miles per hour, the lead cop tells Jack (Keanu) “…there’s a gap in the road ahead… it’s big” from a trailer in the next lane. Of course, he whispers it so all the other passengers presumably don’t hear. Jack has no trouble hearing this even though I can’t hear my car radio on half volume if I put on of the windows down.

1:06 – Don’t go get popcorn. You’re about to miss the most unrealistic scene in movie history. Who’s in charge of sending this bus down a road that’s missing 50 feet of highway? Did these same fine folks work on the hurricane recovery for FEMA later in life?

1:07 – Can anyone explain to me how a second before taking off for the jump over 50 feet of missing highway, the front of the bus suddenly pops upward at about a 20 degree angle. Really? What can we assume caused that? By the way… about 30 seconds before the jump, we see a wide view of the freeway. In the wide view, you can clearly see that they’d have the option of taking a left exit that would avoid having to “jump the bus” altogether. But I guess who cares about details.

1:08 – You can tell this is definitely a pre-9/11 movie. There’s a bus that’s full of C4 and they bring it to an airport. Do you think they’d dare do this in a modern movie? I feel like

1:13 – Keanu isn’t comfortable letting passengers off because he thinks he’s being watched. Yet he’s willing to go underneath a bus on some sort of makeshift mechanic slide.

1:17 – If you’re just turning the movie on right now, Jack is in trouble because the wire to his makeshift mechanical slide broke and he had to puncture the gas tank with a screwdriver in order to hold on. Now, there is gas dripping down on him and a Mexican guy with a ponytail is trying to pull him back into this bus. And Sandy Bullock just chewed him out again.

1:21 – Harry (Jeff Daniels) gets blown to smithereens while trying to find Dennis Hopper. Someone needs to make a YouTube mashup video between this and the “our pets heads are falling off” scene in Dumb and Dumber.

1:24 – Keanu figures out Hopper can see in because he made a comment about Arizona. Sandra Bullock is wearing an Arizona sweatshirt. Keanu says “University of Arizona… good football team.” I’m getting ready to play the BS card on this when (does anyone *ever* remember the Arizona Wildcats being good?!?) when Wikipedia informs me Arizona was ranked #1 in the nation in 1994 and won the Pac-10 in ’93. The early 90s teams even featured Tedy Bruschi.

1:29 – 21 minutes after running over the spikes, that flat tire is finally going to bite us in the butt.

1:31 – Here’s an honest question… the bus full of explosive has been driving around the airport for 23 minutes. Why is a plane just taxiing around like nothing’s happening?

1:32 – A few minutes ago, I proclaimed the bus jumping scene as the best scene in movie history. That was, of course, before I saw 60 solid seconds of just Keanu and Sandra trying to act. Yikes. Make it stop!

1:36 – Hopper’s just figured out that he was duped. For as much as I remember about him, he’s not actually in this movie a whole lot kind of like Heath Ledger in the Dark Knight.

1:40 – Do we ever find out why Hopper is mad or are we just supposed to assume sour apples from his days on the force? Was he wrongfully fired? Did some bad guy take out his wife?

1:42 – Is it just me or does the bomb detonator look a little bit like the recorder that Macauley Culkin had in the second Home Alone?

1:43 – Hopper opens the money and gets splashed in the face with purple dye. Let me set the record straight, we’re supposed to believe that he worked on the police force for years and years. Everything that they’ve done for the entire movie, he’s been two steps ahead. But then he’s foiled when the money has dye packets in it. If you told somebody that you were going to rob them, wouldn’t you assume that the money was going to be a) tracked with some sort of homing beam and/or b) have some sort of dye in it? Doesn’t every department store in America have the same anti-theft system in place? How is this the big thing that foils the bad guy.

1:44 – Classic bad guy gets it because he has to explain how he won scene. As far as I’m concerned, they should have one of these in every action flick. Hopper is telling Keanu that “I’m smarter than you.” Then he gets his head lopped off by a red light on the top of the subway tunnel. Keanu responds back with “…yeah, but I’m taller.” It’s not a very cool line (a la “I’ll be back…” or “Yippee Ki Yay”), but it gets knocked down about a thousand points because… it absolutely makes no sense. It was as if the writers said to one another “I feel like Keanu should say something here. It doesn’t have to make any sense. He just has to say something that might become a catchphrase.” It didn’t.

1:45 – “The track isn’t finished.” This is exactly why Speed 2 didn’t work. By the end of the movie, we’re already rehashing bits from earlier in the movie. You can’t rehash what you’ve already rehashed and expect it to be even somewhat successful, can you? Although I love the concept that Keanu has no control over the speed of the subway… except he can speed it up. Hence the title of the movie, baby! By the way, I’ve never seen Speed 2. I don’t even have an idea what it’s about other than the generic “something needs to be going fast or something bad is going to happen” plotline.

1:49 – Why don’t I own this movie? Somebody remind me to include it on every birthday and/or Christmas present list from now until eternity (or until I get the movie… whichever comes first).

1:50 – In light of her recent marital troubles, how many of you think it would be the coolest thing in the world if Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock started to become an item? Seriously…

1:51 – And scene… any randoms I missed in the credits? Not any that I can see. This is interesting, though. The director has done five movies. Speed, Twister, Speed 2, The Haunting, and one of the Tomb Raider flicks. I don’t think he’s dead… can someone please give him a few million shekels to make another movie. Maybe it sucks, but I can’t help but think the guy responsible for Speed AND Twister has a horribly awesome movie that I’d enjoy.

05

09 2012