Nov 30, 2015

Monthly Movie Recap - November 2015

Posting a day early because tomorrow begins the 13 Days of Creepmas!

You guys! We are now just 18 days away from a new Star Wars movie!! 
Can you feel it?

Speaking of December, if you do any holiday shopping online, I'd really appreciate it if you used the affiliate links in the right sidebar for Amazon and Entertainment Earth. Every order you place using those links will drop a few coins in my pocket. And then you can imagine me like Lucy from Peanuts after she gets a nickel in her collection can.

After overloading on horror for October, I decided to cleanse the mental palette a bit with some comedy this month.

I liked it more than I thought I would. Melissa McCarthy is a mousy desk analyst that gets put into the field after the bad guys discover the identities of all the undercover agents. Hilarity ensues.

Cool: Jason Statham is an absolute riot in this movie!
Lame: McCarthy starts out mousy but of course ends up like most of her roles: ballsy and foul mouthed. It's not that I don't like her (she's funny) I just wish they'd find a new angle for her. Since it's Paul Feig, I imagine she'll probably be the same in Ghostbusters too.

Rating: 7/10

This movie is an absolute love letter to anyone that grew up with the Peanuts holiday specials. It references just about, if not, everything you would want it to. One of the best things about it is that they kept it "Peanuts contemporary" and didn't try to update the world for the 21st century. Kids that don't know who the gang are will probably enjoy it too.

Rating: 9/10

This feels like a "kids have to save the world" flick from the 80s. The only thing that's missing is that sense of wonder I associate with those kind of movies. Maybe it's the setting, maybe it's because it's British, maybe it's because I'm old...who knows? I do like the kids though, which is good because they have to carry the movie.

Cool: Some neat robot designs
Lame: Creepy ass "little kid" looking robot leader makes ultimate use of the Uncanny Valley effect.

Rating: 6/10

Roger Corman's The Phantom Eye (1999)
This "movie" aired as part of AMC's Monsterfest in 1999 during commercial breaks. Corman plays the head of the horror department and sends two interns to retrieve a movie before midnight. When they open a door, it transports them into a different horror genre where they must survive or die. It's a light hearted mix of Scream and Saw with the interns being aware of the tropes of the genres they're trapped in and figuring out how to escape.

You can see the whole thing on YouTube.
Rating: 6/10

Bunks (2014, Netflix)
Kids at summer camp accidentally unleash a curse starting a zombie outbreak. Sounds like fun, right? Maybe if you're under 13. What I didn't know going in is that this was a Disney channel movie. Not to say I haven't enjoyed some in the past but this one didn't have what it takes.

Cool: The idea of a magic storybook that brings its stories alive when they're read out loud
Lame: Squarely aimed at a young audience

Rating: 3/10

Clip from The Nightmare

The Nightmare (2015, Netflix)
This "documentary" is about sleep paralysis. I use quotes because it's all actors playing the parts of the interview subjects and creepy re-enactments. I've had this happen to me a couple times but never to the degree of experiencing other presences in the room. I find it fascinating that different people have the relatively same experience. I'm surprised this hasn't been mined for more horror movies.

Rating: 6.5/10

Trainwreck (Unrated, 2015) 
From the marketing I thought this was going to be wacky romantic comedy. When it's funny, it's funny but I wasn't expecting it to be so humanized. It's a romantic comedy with people that aren't just stereotypes.

Cool: The supporting cast (like Colin Quinn, Lebron James, and John Cena) are just as funny as the leads
Lame: It's a little slow to get rolling, but necessary to understand Amy's character

Rating: 8/10

Midnight Matinee (1990)
Mysterious murders happen at a movie theater during a horror-thon. Sadly, that summary is more exciting than the actual movie. Just about everything in the movie is bland from the characters to the kills.

Cool: Pre X-Files William B Davis
Lame: Too many red herrings. I feel like they really wanted to do some clever things but just never got where they wanted to be

Rating: 3/10, if you crave killings in a movie theater, track down Popcorn

Despicable Me 2 (2013)
Still a little late to this party but I"m loving the movies and finally get why everyone is ga-ga for the Minions. Great voice cast and a lot of fun.

Rating: 7/10

Month Total
 New: 8  Rewatch: 0

Year Total
 New: 73  Rewatch:4

Nov 24, 2015

November 2015 Loot Crate - Combat

Choose your weapon, warrior! November's Loot Crate theme is COMBAT!

Disclaimer: Loot Crate provides these goodies in exchange for promotion and review.

The cover of this month's mag has characters from each of the represented franchises ready to make their stand. We've got Street Fighter's Ryu, Katniss (on the van) from the Hunger Games, a Vault Dweller from Fallout, Shredder from TMNT, and a sniper that's probably from a Blizzard video game.

Articles include epic video game rivalries, a look at why "Kids Vs Kids" is a popular theme, and an interview with WWE announcer/commentator Kyle Edwards.

First up is a pair of rad Shredder sunglasses. Perfect to keep the sun out of your eyes while fighting off kung-fu reptiles! Along with a prop replica of Katniss' Mockingjay pin.

Unlike previous exclusive comics, this one isn't just a different cover. It's a completely original comic crossover between Street Fighter and the Loot Crate offices. I haven't opened it yet but it sounds like it could be a fun read.

Next is a blind box figure series called Cute But Deadly, based on characters from different Blizzard video games. This is Arthas and while he's one of the more common figures (odds of getting him are 5:36) I think he's the best looking one by far. The figure is about 3 inches tall and they crammed a lot of details into it. Just check out all the skulls on his armor!

The Crate also has a sheet of Cute But Deadly magnets featuring more of the characters from the blind box set.

And finally is a Vault Boy bobblehead! This particular pose is exclusive to Loot Crate. Click on the pic to see a larger version and read the fine print on the box. I haven't played Fallout since the original but I'm especially eager to check out the latest games because it takes place in New England!

Here's Vault Boy standing in the wasteland that is the interior of the Crate.

I have mixed feelings on this Crate. While I it was a good assortment with some cool items,  I don't have particular love for most of the franchises. This would be the backup piece that goes in my boot, not my main weapon.

If you'd like to get a box of geeky goodness droppe don your doorstep every month, head over to Loot Crate and sign up! Use promo code AEIOUWHY for 10% off your order. December's theme is galaxy and includes items from The Force Awakens and Halo 5!

Nov 11, 2015

October 2015 Loot Crate - Time

Loot Crate supplies me with this product in exchange for review/promotion.

Unfortunately, October's Loot Crate theme was not horror/Halloween related so I had to put off this review until now. On the plus side, it's one of the most bodacious Crates I've received in awhile! Station!

October's theme was Time, so it's kind of fitting that we're talking about October in November! It's like we're going Back in Time! No? Stretching too much?

Anyway, to get things rolling, here's the monthly magazine and button. I love that the cover brings together the top three (to me anyway!) time travel franchises. Contents include tips on cosplaying the time travelers, interviews with some of the folks that make Loot Crate happen, and a tri-page foldout featuring the DeLorean license plate on one side and an elaborate flow chart on the other to help you figure out which Doctor would fit your tastes.

This 1:5 scale Hoverboard might not actually work but it's still pretty darn cool! They did a fantastic job on the details with this and it was a great design decision to put it on top of a mirror so you can see the under side as well. I have to wonder why they didn't make the stand parts out of translucent material so it would have more of a hover look to it.

Jump starting this post up to 1.21 gigawatts is a Loot Crate exclusive Doc Brown Funko Pop. These figures are normally adorable anyway, but the goggles make Doc extra cute. And look at that, he's missing an eyebrow.

Because even Time Lords need to eat, we've got a Sonic Spork! The handle is fashioned after the 11th Doctor's sonic screwdriver. It doesn't do anything fancy like light up or make noise but I don't know what you expect from your spork other than it functioning as a spoon and/or fork.

Rounding things out is this excellent shirt. Sadly, it seems to be an athletic fit shirt. Totally bogus since I would wear the heck out of it!

Speaking of excellent things, check out the interior of the Crate. It's not one of the complex interiors where you have to reconfigure the box but the graphics are awesome! I'll be adding this into my rotation of desktop wallpapers. If you look on the sides, you can see a couple of familiar vehicles behind the stage curtains.

Rating this Crate on a speedometer, I'd say it gets up to around 80 out of 88 mph. I'm only dinging it a little for the fit of the shirt because I can't wear it.

You don't have to play games with Death to get your own box of geeky goodies every month. Just head over to Loot Crate and subscribe using promo code AEIOUWHY for 10% off any subscription plan of your choosing

Until next time, be excellent to each other.

Nov 4, 2015

SummerSwap2015 - Stop 7

Now that Halloween has been put in the books, here's a Summer Swap retro update!

Pop culture guru William Bruce West was stop 7 on the Summer Swap 2015 US Tour.
Head on over to his site and check out his experience with the Swap Box.

Stay tuned for future updates from the field!

Nov 2, 2015

Salem Halloween 2015

Halloween cannot be contained by a mere calendar! If you're still in the spirit of things, head over to Spooky Moon and check out Hallow-vember.

And don't forget to keep an eye or two on, that will be gearing up pretty soon.

Here's a few pics from Salem on Halloween night. Thanks to my Halloween photographers, my wife and mom, for these shots. As you'll see, my costume doesn't exactly allow for taking pictures. And there's also the problem of just not being able to see more than shapes after 15'.

The Salem Creep emerged once again to unleash its annual horror on the streets!
If you happened to stumble into this blog while searching for Salem Halloween photos and you have pics with me, please let me know! There are various contact links in the left sidebar.

I wish I had gotten to see this in person, it looks pretty impressive!

A different take on a big game hunter. I like it!

Serious props to this Dazzler cross-play. He was awesome!

And you can't have Halloween without Sam from Trick R Treat!

There are more pics over on Flickr, feel free to check them out. Thanks to Leap Year, we have one extra day until next Halloween. :(