Blu-ray review: FINAL EXAM

FINAL EXAM Blu-ray | ©2014 Shout! Factory

Stars: Cecile Bagdadi, Joel S. Rice, Ralph Brown, DeAnna Robbins, Sherry Willis- Burch Writer-Director: Jimmy Huston Suggested Retail Price: $24.97 Distributor: Shout! Factory Supply and demand for slasher flicks fueled the early 1980s as every low budget production company wanted to get into the horror movie genre. They were cheap to make, didn’t need stars and audiences ate them up. You also didn’t have to be a studio to make bank on these films. FINAL EXAM is the product of the HALLOWEEN and FRIDAY THE 13th school of slasher horror films. Pick a holiday or event, have the movie set …Read On »

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TV Review: 24: LIVE ANOTHER DAY – Season 9 – “5:00PM to 6:00PM”

Jack (Kiefer Sutherland) tries to evacuate the hospital on 24: LIVE ANOTHER DAY | © 2014 Chris Raphael/FOX

Stars: Kiefer Sutherland, Yvonne Strahovski, Tate Donovan, Mary Lynn Rajskub, William Devane, Gbenga Akinnagbe, Giles Matthey, Michael Wincott, Benjamin Bratt, Kim Raver Writers: Tony Basgallop Director: Jon Cassar Network: Fox, airs Monday nights @ 9 p.m. Original Telecast: June 9, 2014 It is always an interesting development with the presidents that are portrayed on 24. Whether they are too honorable in the case of President Palmer or too corrupt in President Logan or too gung-ho in the case of President Wayne Palmer or makes too many poor decisions in the case of President Taylor. In 24: LIVE ANOTHER DAY, President …Read On »

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CD Review: THE RESCUE soundtrack

THE RESCUE soundtrack | ©2014 Intrada Records

Intrada follows up their release of Bruce Broughton’s classic score to YOUNG SHERLOCK HOLMES with music for a just slightly more jingoistic youth adventure that’s sure to go down as one of Kim Il Jong’s least favorite entertainments. But for Broughton fans, 1988s Touchstone movie THE RESCUE  is a flag-waving, anti North Korean blast of nutty musical fun from the composer, if only to hear Broughton unfurl symphonic action combos of all-American funk and evil Asian percussion. But then, blasting commies was the rage in a decade that saw Basil Poledouris take down the Russians on U.S. soil for RED …Read On »

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TV Review: GAME OF THRONES – Season 4 – “The Watchers on the Wall”

Neil Fingleton in GAME OF THRONES - Season 4 - "The Watcher in the Wall" | ©2014 HBO/Helen Sloan

Stars: Kit Harington, John Bradley, Hannah Murray, Rose Leslie, Kristofer Hivju, Owen Teale, Peter Vaughan, Dominic Carter, Ben Crompton, Brennock O’Connor, Mark Stanley, Josef Altin Writers: David Benioff & D.B. Weiss, series created by David Benioff & D.B. Weiss, based on George R.R. Martin’s “A Song of Ice and Fire” Director: Neil Marshall Network: HBO, Sundays @ 9 PM Airdate: June 8, 2014 Breaking format with other episodes of GAME OF THRONES, the episode “The Watches on the Wall” takes place entirely in and around Castle Black as the Wildlings attack the Night’s Watch stronghold. If it’s medieval battle you …Read On »

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CD Review: THE MACHINE soundtrack

THE MACHINE soundtrack | ©2014 Movie Score Media

Among the wave of big-budget sci-fi scores using the latest in music high-tech to capture a lo-fi mid-80s electric sound, THE MACHINE resurrects the ghost in the synth to notable effect. Making his feature debut after numerous shorts (one tellingly titled THE BRITISH UFO FILES), Tom Raybould nails a hybrid approach between the coldly determined rhythms of John Carpenter, the more ominous sonic masses of Vangelis and the organic tonalities of a gentle, and just as effective piano and guitar. Put these together, and you’ve got an impressive recipe for creating musical artificial intelligence with a heart. Such is the …Read On »

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Movie Review: HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2

HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2 movie poster | ©2014 DreamWorks

Rating: PG Stars (voices): Jay Baruchel, Cate Blanchett, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson, America Ferrara, Jonah Hill, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, T.J. Miller, Kristen Wiig, Djimon Hounsou, Kit Harington Writer: Dean DeBlois, based on the novels by Cressida Cowell Director: Dean DeBlois Distributor: 20th Century Fox/DreamWorks Animation Release Date: June 13, 2014 In 2010, HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON came to the screen. Jointly written and directed by Dean DeBlois and Chris Sanders, based on Cressida Cowell’s series of novels, the first TRAIN introduced us to our hero and narrator, the Viking youth Hiccup (voiced by Jay Baruchel). Hiccup is more of an …Read On »

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CD Review: THE FINAL MEMBER soundtrack

THE FINAL MEMBER soundtrack | ©2014 Movie Score Media

Whether it was a mildly horny teen in THE WAY WAY BACK, a guy getting it on with his dream girl through a good number of the (500) DAYS OF SUMMER or a high school senior MacDaddy facing THE SPECTACULAR NOW, Rob Simonsen has scored more than a few films where using one’s penis is of vital importance. The difference with THE FINAL MEMBER  is that it becomes a detachment contest among three particularly giving guys who want to donate their Johnson to the Icelandic Phallological Museum, the preeminent (and only) penis museum on the planet that needs to complete …Read On »

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CD Review: FILTH soundtrack

FILTH soundtrack | ©2014 Milan Records

Clint Mansell has a rocking way of descending into madness, whether it’s a math savant drilling a hole in his head to solve an impossible equation, having the savior of the great flood become convinced he’s got to sacrifice a first born, or manically playing a bunch of junkies hallucinating their way to hell. Fuel his style of using rhythmically intensifying waves of electric guitar and symphonic psychosis with the drug-addled imagination of TRAINSPOTTING author Irving Welsh, and you’ve got a powerfully unhinged recipe for one very bad Scottish lieutenant in FILTH. The twisted cop’s nationality cleverly accounts for the bagpipes …Read On »

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CD Review: DENNIS THE MENACE soundtrack

DENNIS THE MENACE soundtrack | ©2014 La La Land Records

While he was a maestro of nearly every musical style, the one genre that Jerry Goldsmith never quite seemed to master was straight-up, non-genre comedy, particularly in such oddball scores as THE LONELY GUY, FIERCE CREATURES and MR. BASEBALL. Maybe it was because the melodies got all sentimental when confronted with straight-up romance, as opposed to playing the hijinks of gremlins and psycho neighbors. While he might not have horns, the devilish mischief of 1993s DENNIS THE MENACE does much to rectify the Goldsmith comedy curse, especially since the romance here is giving a yucky kiss to Margaret Wade. DENNIS …Read On »

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CD Review: BETTER LIVING THROUGH CHEMISTRY soundtrack

BETTER LIVING THROUGH CHEMISTRY soundtrack | ©2014 Lakeshore Records

Few comedy-minded composers are bridging the gap between the days of future alt. rock and the past’s pop kitsch like Andrew Feltenstein and John Nau, especially when it comes to all-out spoofs that allowed the free for all of jazz, psychedelic and Mexican music in CASA DI ME PADRE or the 70s funk fest and shark love songs of ANCHORMAN 2. But what makes LIVING better, and more challenging is that instead of uproarious pop culture and movie jokes, this scoring duo is tasked with rampaging through regular day suburbia, if still completely jacked up on illicit sex and drugs. …Read On »

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