12/30/10

Have You Ever Seen: The Hive

I don’t know how I always pick the movies that are so god awful. I was scrolling through the instantly watch videos on Netflix and spotted this gem. The cover art is something magical. Who doesn’t like a movie where nature turns on man. I am not talking about natural disaster. No typhoons. No earthquakes. Not even a giant tornado can compare to what lies beneath our feet. The hive is a classic SyFy movie. It has the out of work actor, the outrageous story line, and the cheapest effects.

The Hive (iTunes) is a simple idea. On a remote South East Asian island, the natives are being attacked by an army of killer ants. A group of eco-mercenaries are brought in to save the day and rid the island of these pesky ants. But what lies ahead is something that no one is prepared to hear. These ants aren’t just ants. They are controlled by something not of this world. Can these eco-mercenaries stop the ants before they consume the island and everything or everyone on it?

AntsI cannot stress enough how awful this movie is. It was a wreck from the moment it began. The opening scene is of ants crawling on a tree. I was sure we were going to get an instant kill within the first five minutes of the movie. I was right. A woman is cleaning her house and tending to her baby. The ants are just covering the place. I don’t mean the floor. I don’t mean the walls. These ants are crawling all over the ceiling. With a mothers intuition, she quickly grabs her baby before a pile of ants crash down on top of it. The woman hurries to the door but trips. The baby slides across the floor and within seconds, the mother is covered in ants. The woman is nothing more than a ‘picked to the bone’ skeleton. Holy Shit! These ants mean business. The ants maneuver themselves towards the baby. While we see a few ants crawling on the baby, we don’t see its’ demise. The scene jumps to an outside view of the house and a scream is heard while the house goes black. That’s two dead people already. Can someone save the day before they kill more?

We are introduced to a group of eco-mercenaries. These men are part of the Thorax Team. They are called in when a nuance (such as ants) are needed to be eradicated. This team is pretty well equipped. While I am all for the cool and high-tech weapons in movies, these weapons just seemed a little out-of-place. It’s like when you see Chris Elliot in The Abyss. It just throws you a WTF moment and then everything just seems totally outrageous. I was predicting they would spray the ants with a corrosive acid of sort. Acid would have been cool. It would have been bad ass if someone got a little too close to the hose and gets doused. The Thorax Team have laser guns that shoot a blue stream of light that seems to just kill the ants but nothing else around it. While they looked cool, I just cannot find them being plausible. They looked more like the belonged in another bug infestation movie, “Starship Troopers”.

Ants

The acting reminded me of any high school production I’ve seen. The dialogue seems stale. You’re being attacked by smart, killer ants. I’d be terrified. Scream in terror. Run in terror. Don’t just point and say, “oh no.” The movie had only one major star. Major is pushing it. Since his “Dukes of Hazzard” days are up, Tom Wopat is just looking for any work that can bring home a check. He plays one of the Thorax Team members, Bill. Once the movie introduced him, I was 100% correct he was going to die. He played the rebel team member. He was either angry or really pissed off.

I don’t know how many ants there are in the world. Some say trillion. Other places say quadrillion. That’s the entire world. This island is infested with millions upon millions. The ground is covered Antsin them. While Bill and Len (Kal Weber) are on a mission to kill these bugs, they come to an incredible site that neither of them can explain. The ants have seemed to master creating complex works of art.  The ants bring down a tree branch and a single ant crawls inside Bill’s ear. The bite seems to trigger something in Bill and makes him extremely pissed off. The ants even seem to create an arm over to pull a boat back to shore. How smart are these ants? How stupid do you think people are? It’s a little over the top.

Ants

The movie was full of really bad CGI moments. The ants even go as far as creating a giant ant made of ants to crush a human. A cheap gag which wasn’t even the slight bit funny. The team comes to the hive of the ants. Still boggles the mind when I keep saying ‘the hive’. Ants live in colonies. It’s bees that live in hives. While in the nest, they discover the ants have created a working computer. You can see how out there this movie is when they give these ants the intelligence of a human that can create a working computer. This explains how the ants can create these structures they do. The ants even work together to hold a little girl hostage. With the girl hostage, the leaders of this island need to act fast. It’s time to eradicate them. Cause according to the general on the island,

“We don’t negotiate with ants.”

Really!? Really!? Did he just say that? What the eff? The Thorax Team bargains with the ants to make a trade for the little girl. In the end, Bill takes a bomb to the nest. Kal and his pretty young girlfriend flee with the young hostage. The world is safe from these killer, Einsteinian ants.  The crappy CGI, the bad voice dubbing, and the great twist to the movie, (it was aliens that made the ants become super smart) made this movie a giant piece of dog turd. It could have worked if they just left the aliens out. The movie wouldn’t have been any better if they hadn’t, it just would have been a little more of the ‘ants getting pissed off at people’ type of movie. Spiders get pissed, bees get pissed, and genetically altered wasps get pissed. But none of them are being controlled by an alien from outer space. It is a movie that fits in nicely with the rest of the SyFy line ups. SyFy isn’t known for blockbusters. Most of their movies are off the wall and random as sheet (Sharktopus). With aliens, ants that can float in the air, and blue lasers to defeat them, you got a recipe for creepy, insect crap.

09/18/10

Have You Ever Seen: Mutants

After I wasted a night away watching ThanksKilling, I swore to never watch a movie like that again. While fetching my sister from work one day, a gentleman she works with approach me with tons of enthusiasm. He heard about me watching the killer turkey movie. Not sure if he is really interested in watching it or not. I explained to him and to many others that it is a movie to avoid. He geared me towards another Oscar worthy movie. He said it was bad. Not just bad but bad. He could have said horrendous. I am still debating on which of these movies takes the honor of being the worst. It is a toss-up between killer mutants or a killer turkey. I like the monster flicks. I don’t watch SyFy religiously like my brother does but I am not one to turn down a good ole fashion creature/zombie movie. I grabbed the flick and was eager to lay my eyes upon this movie. It has Michael Ironside in it! He’s in everything. With a title called Mutants it has to be good, right?

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09/6/10

Have You Ever Seen: ThanksKilling

I am a huge fan of Netflix. It’s my go to device for movies. If I haven’t seen a movie, I go there. If I want to watch some old sitcoms, I go there. If I need to relax and watch a cheesy horror movie, I go there. Today was a “cheesy horror movie” night. Before I watched this movie, my sister lent me a movie to watch. It was called, “For Sale By Owner”. Tom Skeritt was in it. I know him from Picket Fences but I really remember him from Poltergeist III. FSBO wasn’t very good. It was a slow movie. The ending was the director and/or writer telling the viewers,

“Eff you. Everything you just watched meant nothing. I’m bringing in Phantom Indians and Cannibal Pilgrims. How about them apples?”

I understand the ending to some extent but there are some questions that still linger about what really went on. It was a cheap ending that makes the viewers feel dumb. Don’t bother paying any attention to what is going on. At the end, you’re spoon fed everything. 

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07/20/10

Have You Ever Seen: Bugsy Malone

I had to look back at my “Top Ten List” and was shocked that I didn’t include this movie. It was and is a great musical. The movie came out in 1976. A good year for some of my favorite movies. (You’ll see why when I post another movie review). The movie was written and directed by Alan Parker. The music was written and performed by Paul Williams. (He was the voice of the Penguin in Batman: The Animated Series!? Awesome.) What sets the movie apart from all others musicals and movies alike, it starred only child actors. Only two stars of the movie are still well known today. I am sort of pissed that my school never tried doing this as a production. From what I have read online, it seems to be a huge hit at schools. I wish I could have played Dandy Dan. He is my favorite.

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07/3/10

Have You Ever Seen: Mr. Boogedy

Another movie from my childhood is a Disney movie. Every Sunday night, Disney treated people to “The Wonderful World of Disney”. The movie aired back in 1986. I was 7 years old when it came out. I cannot recall if the movie scared me or not.  The movie is about a family that moves to a small New England town to set up shop with their Gag City business. The house they move into is haunted by the hamburger face ghoul named, Mr. Boogedy and a sick child named Jonathan. But if the movie Troll scared me, I bet this did too. Mr. Boogedy is truly a fantastic movie. The movie even spawned a sequel, “The Bride of Boogedy”. Was it as good as the first one? No. Not many sequels ever surpass the original.

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