Thursday, January 28, 2010

New Capsule Review: The Wildman of Kentucky - The Mystery of Panther Rock (2008)

The first new review of the New Year is here, and it's for an amateurish documentary about the existence of Bigfoot and other natural phenomena in the Frazier Land of Kentucky. Check out my capsule review for The Wildman of Kentucky: The Mystery of Panther Rock!

Amidst the footage of the "Reality Team" traipsing about the spooky woods of the Frazier Lands at night and interviews with Bigfoot witnesses, we also get totally out-of-place hard rock music by "Freakhouse," and odd CGI "recreations" of Bigfoot appearances. However, the strangest thing in the entire two-hour running time is probably the CGI Indian dancing for Bigfoot amidst a sea of flames! (No I'm not kidding.)

I have about another five documentaries from Reality Entertainment to check out ranging from Sherlock Holmes, to Vikings, to Alice in Wonderland that I have yet to check out, but they are going to be on the backburner for a bit longer because I have a roundtable review (WAR OF THE GARGANTUAS!) to tackle, along with Robot Monster 3D which was chosen well over a month ago by readers in the last "Torture the Vault Master" poll.

Stay tuned for more b-movie goodness; blog ya later!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Good riddance to 2009!

A lot of sites on the web like to do lengthy articles that take a glance back at the previous year's ups and downs, and well, I've never truthfully been a big fan of that. But I felt that I should write something to ring in the new year, so I suppose it wouldn't hurt for yours truly to take a glance back at 2009, which to me was just a terrible year overall. While I have my own personal reasons for categorizing 2009 as a "bad year," I'd have to say that several big theatrical disappointments and the equally large number of celebrity deaths really put a damper on things.

Now last year wasn't completely awful on the cinema front because there were some truly amazing films that came out, such as Avatar, Sherlock Holmes, The Hangover, District 9, Zombieland, Watchmen, Inglorious Basterds, and well... the list goes on. But the grand cinematic achievements of these films were, to me, marred by an increasingly large number of theatrical releases that were just plain sub-par.

After the success of Transformers, the world waited with bated breath to see the surely superior sequel. Instead, we got an awful special-effects driven film with little-to-no-plot, and lots of extraneous characters. Yeah, I know it was a Michael Bay film, and plus its about a line of Hasbro toys that have been around since the 80s. Still, that's no excuse for the terrible final product, especially after the previous film actually turned out to be pretty decent!

And then there was Fox's idiotic X-Men Origins: Wolverine which actually managed to retain a shred of dignity up until Wolverine, armed with his trademark adamantium claws, proceeded to comically destroy a bathroom. Coupled with a terrible plot, and seemingly unfinished and/or just plain poorly done special effects, this awful movie still managed to make a killing at the box office. Which leads me to two conclusions: A.) Hollywood is getting lazy and thinks that they can shove just about any tripe down our throats and walk away with a profit and B.) the general moviegoing public is more than happy to allow this.

I could rant about this all day, but I think you get my point. Luckily, 2010 is promising a LOT of good stuff (i.e. Iron Man 2, The Wolfman) and I'm crossing my fingers that we get a lot of high quality films this year. In a time where the economy is shaky, jobs are scarce, and the outbreak of a new war is still a possibility, we could use some quality cinema to help get us through the tough times.

And what was up with all the celebrity deaths last year? So many celebs, both cult and mainstream, keeled over and the world was definitely a darker place for it. We lost Brittany Murphy, Ricardo Montalban, Pat Hingle, Patrick Swayze, David Carradine, Dick Durock, Walter Kronkite, Robert Quarry, Farrah Fawcett, Bea Arthur, Dom DeLuise, Marilyn Chambers, Robert Ginty, Lou Albano, Paul Naschy, Dan O'Bannon, and many others. Hopefully this year will be a little easier on us.

So yeah, in my eyes, 2009 sucked, but as of 12:00 AM on January 1st, I mentally hit a reset button and said goodbye to all of that. Here's truly hoping that 2010 is a good year for everyone. I hope to keep the Vault going strong and sincerely hope that the movie gods are a lot kinder to us this year.

So let's raise a toast to our health, and to the health of the entertainment industry. May Hollywood produce more winners than bombs; may Uwe Boll fall into a bottomless well; may Sam Raimi and Sony come to an accord to get Spider-Man 4 off the ground; and most importantly, may all of you have a healthy and prosperous New Year!