Archive for August, 2012

Se7en

What’s in the box? What’s in the box?!” spoken by Brad Pitt in David Fincher’s 1995 American thriller Se7en.

Shame poor Brad. Seven follows two detectives (Morgan Freeman and Brad Pitt) on their quest to hunt and capture a serial killer. The homicidal psychopath (Kevin Spacey, OOPS spoiler) punishes his victims for committing one of the seven deadly sins. Kevin Spacey portrays the demented killer perfectly. His calm and controlled demeanor is unbelievably chilling. Brad Pitt strays away from his pretty boy image while portraying the young, hot-headed detective. And old Morgan is always lovely. Lovelier still, is Gwyneth Paltrow who plays Brad’s sweet and innocent wife who unfortunately meets a gruesome end thanks to Spacey’s sinister games. Seven is the classic homicidal psychopath film and is surely what is responsible for the inspiration for series such as Saw. However, Seven is far superior in every way. The murder scenarios are horrific ESPECIALLY the ‘lust’ victim. Clever and disturbing with a shocking ending. After all, it leaves Brad screaming about boxes and serves as inspiration for today’s Quote of the Day.

Brad is distressed but with good reason

The ‘lust’ murder is all kinds of messed up

The scene you will never forget…

Watch Seven. Let’s sum it up. Brad is good. Spacey is AMAZING. The ‘lust’ and ‘box’ scenes will leave you disturbed and nauseated. And it’s hard not to tear up for poor Gwyneth and Brad. The demented killer succeeds in his intricate and devilish plans. And the film will leave you questioning your humanity. It is that intense. You will never forget Kevin Spacey and his box, I can assure you. Oh, and on a side note, look at this cute animation of the infamous scene! Look at it!

Cute!

For more on Se7en, check out trailer!

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Cloud Atlas

Cloud Atlas is definitely one of the films I am most excited for. Recently I came across the five minute trailer, which to date, has been one of the few insights into the secretive project. What we do know about Cloud Atlas is that it is based on the best-selling novel by David Mitchel and is being directed by the Wachowskis as well as Tom Tykwer. The novel consists of six nested stories that are intertwined throughout various time periods in past and future human history. The official film synopsis describes the film as “an epic story of humankind in which the actions and consequences of our lives impact one another throughout the past, present and future as one soul is shaped from a murderer into a saviour and a single act of kindness ripples out for centuries to inspire a revolution.”

Sexy Screenshot Number 1

What attracted me to this film though is the amazing trailer. The ensemble cast is fantastic and includes names such as Hugo Weaving, Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Susan Sarandon, Hugh Grant and Ben Wishaw to name a few. From what I can tell, this film looks like it’s going to be an epic and emotional journey whilst exploring the reincarnation of the characters souls across varied time settings. Besides that, the soundtrack is pretty! The trailer also features Outro by M83 which is just stupidly beautiful. It does things to me.

I have watched this trailer countless times, and it still moves me every time. I especially love the dystopian future setting with the rebellious clone character. It looks AMAZING. However from what I can tell, the novel’s structure sounds complicated and I hope that the Wachowski’s and Tykwer can translate this effectively to screen. The Wachowski’s are responsible for The Matrix trilogy as well as V for Vendetta, which has been previously reviewed on Popcornography (click here). Tykwer, on the other hand, is responsible for great project such as Run Lola Run and Perfume: The Story of a Murderer. I thus have faith that this film will not disappoint. However, only time will tell.

Clones in future dystopian societies excite me 

Cloud Atlas is released on October 26. Be excited. And if you aren’t excited, watch the trailer. If you are aren’t excited after that then I can’t help you and you should go back to your Mandy Moore movies.

For welcome shivers, check out the extended trailer for Cloud Atlas. 

Troll 2

This post is going to be quite peculiar. Many even go as far to say that it may be the worst film of all time. So you may wonder what it is doing on the prestigious blog that is Popcornography. I will tell you. Troll 2 is so bad, and I mean really REALLY bad, that it is actually good. This may be the only movie that I have ever seen that completely fails at almost every aspect of film-making and yet is able to retain its watch ability. But please note that this movie was not intended to be the train wreck that it is. It is no Snakes on a Plane. This was a horror project which failed dismally. Troll 2, although produced back in 1990, has received much attention of late purely because it is just so darn bad. Subsequently, Troll 2 has mustered an intense cult following and has even given rise to the documentary entitled; Best Worst Movie. The documentary was released in 2009 and follows and chronicles the films surprisingly large cult following.

Trolls? Goblins? Tiny men in potato sacks? Fail.

The strange thing about Troll 2 is that it has nothing to do with trolls of any kind. A movie entitled Troll was released at some point or another but it has no relation to Troll 2 whatsoever. Troll 2 is about vegetarian goblins that pursue a family. The goblins stalk and taunt the family. The goblins, being vegetarian, seek to turn the victimized family members into vegetable-human hybrids so that they can then eat them. Like I said… BIZZARE.  The son, Joshua, is also warned of the goblins by his dead grandfather and there was also something about a woman seducing male characters with popcorn. This made no sense. Well, especially this…

Popcornography in practice?

“You can’t piss on hospitality!” – If only the dad were right…

Goblin make-up must have taken hours

Before I watched the movie, I made sure to check out the documentary that received critical success upon release in 2009. The child star from the movie (Michael Stephenson), details the struggles resulting from participating in the infamous film. The actors involved hid their shame for their entire lives and their careers in showbiz were consequently doomed. With the success of its re-release, in addition to its extensive fan base, these failed wannabe actors are finally getting some attention. It’s a little late however. Shame.

The documentary is very interesting. The director is a freak who still maintains that his film is a ‘masterpiece’. His wife was responsible for the script of Troll 2. Apparently she was “pissed off” that all her friends became vegetarian and decided to portray her frustration in a ‘horror’ film?? Both the director and wife can barely speak English. According to the cast, they were mostly kept in the dark with regards to the confusing script and concept. Thus they were devastated when they finally bared witness to the VHS release years later. Unanticipated shame is the worst kind. I must reiterate how truly deluded these people are. The director is a self-righteous douche. The editor of the film went as far to say that Troll 2 is, and I quote, “a ferocious analysis of modern day society.” What is happening!? Am I even surprised that the drug-store owner was played by a mental patient who was high for the majority of production? No.

Mental disorders and marijuana do not lead to Oscar nominations

Troll 2 proves that the world is a crazy place. If you want to experience one of the most shocking, ridiculous and low budget films LIKE EVER, watch Troll 2. Some of my favourite moments include lines delivered by the daughter and mother. You have never seen anything this horrendous (I can assure you) and yet fascination urges you to continue watching. It’s truly odd. Additionally, the infamous “Oh my God” scene has received over three million hits on Youtube and many techno remixes and mash-ups exist. Some people have too much time.

The infamous “Oh my Gaaaaaaahhhhd” scene. Oh em gee 

Check out the modern Troll 2 trailer for the re-release. Dramatic or ridiculous? Mostly ridiculous. 

V for Vendetta

God is in the rain,” spoken by Natalie Portman in the 2006 dystopian thriller film V for Vendetta directed by James McTeigue.

Remember, remember, the fifth of November, gunpowder, treason and plot. So V for Vendetta is about a masked and charismatic freedom fighter wanting to exact revenge of those responsible for disfiguring him. In this case, an oppressive government is to blame. Sweet Natalie Portman gets mixed up in his affairs and struggles to uncover whether the vigilante is a true hero or actually just a madman with strong tendencies to blow stuff up. As with most of my favourite films, V for Vendetta is incredibly dramatic with overly grandiose emotional sequences that send welcome shivers down the spine. Natalie Portman is tortured for the purposes of a “political rebirth” and she delivers a performance so exceptional it gives old Meryl a run for her money. The goddess that is Natalie Portman proves that she was already delivering stunning performances back in 2006 before her noteworthy emo ballet roles. V for Vendetta is truly a great political film that will undoubtedly evoke debate and will stay with you long after the credits role.

Is there anything more glorious than bald Natalie Portman gasping in the rain?? No.

Besides bald and tortured Natalie, there are many other aspects that will attract you to this gem of a film. Sad lesbian stories, ruthless dictators, extinct roses, brilliantly intellectual writing as well as the themes of hope and freedom are amongst these. Oh, and V for Vendetta was also produced by the Wachowski brothers who are responsible for The Matrix trilogy. So expect some matrix-esque action sequences.

The next two points require their own paragraph. Firstly, the soundtrack in this film is so moving that I fight back tears during every screening. Literally, I wish this soundtrack was the soundtrack to my life. Secondly, the masked anti-hero, V, makes use of stupidly long domino lines whilst executing his intricate and devilish plans. Mr McTeigue crafts montage scenes which cleverly utilize the above points concurrently. These montage scenes will have you writhing on the floor in glee. I should know…

Long domino lines excite me

For more wonderfully dramatic and sexy V for Vendetta time, check out the trailer!

Hitchcock

Today is Alfred Hitchcock’s day of birth. Happy birthday Alfred! Popcornography has been delving into old-school horror of late and has decided to dedicate a post to the father of horror on this auspicious day. Hitchcock has undeniably shaped the suspense and psychological horror film genres through his many great projects. Recently while re-watching The Birds and Vertigo, I came across these very interesting movie posters inspired by Hitchcock’s finest. The posters below are re-imaginings of Hitchcock’s masterpieces by design artist Laz Marquez. Today’s I see Dead Poster’s is my small gift to you Alfred. So happy happy Hitchcock and thank you for the Psycho shower scene that haunts me to this day.

Rear Window (1954)

Vertigo (1958)

Psycho (1960)

The Birds (1963)

For more on The Birds, one of Alfred’s latest endeavours, click here. You won’t be sorry.

The Birds

[To Melanie] ”Why are they doing this? Why are the doing this? They said when you got here, the whole thing started. Who are you? What are you? Where did you come from? I think you’re the cause of all of this. I think you’re evil. Evil!” spoken by random woman in Diner in Alfred Hitchcock’s 1963 horror The Birds.

Want to watch the quote? Do it! The random woman in the Diner sure is dramatic AND rather rude. Tippi slaps her after she concludes her hate-filled monologue. Scandal.

The random woman in the Diner loses her cool 

So this last week, I have been revisiting old school horror films. As a young child, my father used to force me to watch The Birds with him  and at the time it was hideously terrifying. However, not so much anymore. Hitchcock movies, although iconic pieces of art which pioneered the suspense and psychological thriller film genres, are very difficult to watch today and most definitely won’t affect your sleep patterns in any regard. Despite this, re-watching The Birds was surprisingly entertaining. There was one particular moment after the mother finds the first bird-mutilated body. Her horror-filled silent reaction/fit was priceless. I can’t remember laughing that hard in a long time. Besides having many ridiculous moments, The Birds will resonate with anyone studying at UCT. While watching countless flocks of birds terrorize poor civilians, I couldn’t help but think of the pigeons that dominate UCT’s Food Court. It’s scarily similar. Hitchcock would be stunned into silence much like the mother I mentioned earlier.

The mother’s fit of silent horror makes me giggle 

Additionally, it was most intriguing to watch Tippi Hedren become significantly more disheveled as the horror became increasingly prominent.  Those birds sure don’t like humans. The reason for the many bird attacks is never mentioned and the movie ends abruptly after our leading lady takes a feathery beating. However, film analysts will claim that the film deals with themes of female sexuality and humanities lack of control over nature. Others will say, that the film is merely a tale of survival and a mechanism for suspense without reason. But I must say, it is interesting how Hitchcock is able to turn an every day occurrence, like a bird, into a mechanism to evoke terror. Anyway enough of that. The Birds attack things, cause pandemonium and at times can lead to a number of laughs as opposed to scares. Perhaps give this one a skip unless you are an avid horror fan.

Entering this room was a bad mistake Tippi. I’m sorry

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