By: Justin Hopkins
It has been way to long since I did a B Movie Sunday Review. Had a bunch going on as is life, but I am back and decided to go back and pluck out a classic from 1985, The Stuff. A movie that I haven’t watched in about 15 years so I couldn’t remember a whole lot when I sat down to give it a watch. Without further delay, lets dive back in shall we.
The movie kicks off with two homeless men eating some white goo, that was bubbling out of the snow. Deciding that it tastes so good. They might as well try and sell it. We jump forward a bit to a kid, Jason, waking up in the middle of the night and heading downstairs for a drink and a bite to eat. When he sees the container of, The Stuff, knocked over and it’s contents moving about in the refrigerator. His Dad comes up behind him too late to see it moving and scares him back upstairs. Helping himself to a bit of The Stuff afterward. After a commercial selling The Stuff as being better then Ice Cream. We see a group of business tycoons talking about how they have failed to find out how The Stuff was made and a Chocolate Chip company had been sold to them as well. Deciding that drastic attempts must be taken and are going to hire Industry Spy David “Mo” Rutherford to steal the ingredients for them. Proving himself capable after already knowing everything due to having bugged one of them the night before and after getting his check. Knocked out the guy who was giving him a hard time for being ousted from the FBI. Meanwhile, Jason is trying to warn his family about The Stuff but they are not listening. Back to Moe, we see him posing as a wealthy Oil Tycoon to get into a Sound Stage where they are recording the next commercial. Full of scantily clad women who are walking down runways and feeding each other. Being directed by Nicole. The woman who pretty much got their advertisement up and running. After smooth talking her into believing he was a potential buyer of the entire ad agency and agrees to go back to his hotel to talk more. Leaving us free to rejoin Jason in his destruction of as much of The Stuff as he can at the grocery store, before workers manage to grab him. After an Interview with someone with the FDA, who is killed by his dog after. Mo follows a lead to Stader, Virginia. A ghost town, with just a postmen and Gas Station Worker. After an altercation with a man named Chocolate Chip Charlie. The former owner of the Chocolate Chip Company. Turned out he was swindled out of his company by his Family and wants to find evidence to use to get his company back. Together they confront the postman. Finding out that everyone’s mail was being routed to Midland, Georgia. He excuses himself to the bathroom. Where The Stuff begins pouring out of his mouth. After hearing strange noises, break down the door. Finding him dead on the ground. Mouth opened outstretched. They go out the window to find who did it. Are attacked by a group of men, who are hollow and break under their attacks. Finally getting away by boat and somewhere safe. Mo sends Chocolate Chip to get the FBI while he pushes on with his investigation. Goal shifting more from the ingredients to what exactly is The Stuff and I will leave it there for now.
This was a compelling tale of consumerism. How easily it is to get people hooked on a product. With several sexy, flashy commercials, songs and radio advertisements. People eating it all up without even wondering what exactly they were putting into their bodies. Only people asking were the ones who wanted to use it to do the same thing for the sake of cashing in on it. Even after knowing, still willing to put it in their products as low doses to get people hooked, without the mind control effects. A story that not only stands the test of time, but can easily be re-done today to similar affects.
Of course, being a horror movie from the 80’s, we got to talk about the effects. Which were pretty good. Affects of The Stuff coming out of people’s mouths looks good and they did a good job for the most part making pools of The Stuff move about rooms and shooting out of beds. A bit of the green screen and CG are a bit dodgy but passable for its age.
Michael Moriarty was easily the standout in the cast. Bringing a suave swagger to his character. Likable right from the gate, when he showed his prowess with the bug and the way he knocked out the guy who mocked him from the gate. Putting together a good guy, who believed his own hype and knew how to back it up at the same time. Garret Morris’s Chocolate Chip Charlie was criminally under-utilized. When he was on screen he was so good. Entertaining and had good chemistry with Moriarty and a shame we didn’t get more screen time. The same can kind of be said for Andrea Marcovicci. Played her role well enough, just felt like her character needed more fleshing out.
Negative wise is the Militia scenes. They really add very little outside of humor. Which could have easily have gone to Chocolate Chip and been a lot better. Even the fact that they had a radio station could have gone to Nicole or one of many of Mo Contacts. Just felt like they were tacked on for time and not much more. Although, did chuckle at the ‘Nam joke.
Before we round this out. Let me say something that will certainly rock the boat with some people. In a world that loves dusting off movies and giving them a new shine. The Stuff would actually be perfect for a remake. Like I said, The Consumerism Story they told is still prevalent today. Quite a few Horror Directors active today could tell a chilling tale today with a bit higher budget and newer practical effects. Especially if they get the nerve to give it a much darker ending.
With that said, The Stuff is definitely a movie you should give watch if you haven’t already seen. Have some good laughs and decent horror spread out. As always, I hope you enjoyed and…
Thank You For Reading.
By Paul Anthony
In every generation there are actors that everything they do is gold and they start to show up in everything and boom they still the show for years to come and right now it is Kevin Hart’s time to touch everything and have it turn to gold. That is just one aspect because for a movie to work you need another person and that other person is Ice Cube who can do magic as well at times. Hart has been around but mostly doing stand ups and making cameos then slowing in a supporting role then made his way to being a main star. In 2014 was one of his first true main role in Ride Along which made 154 million from a 25 million dollar budget you knew a sequel was coming and two years later, we got Ride Along 2. The budget was bigger at 40 million but the profit was lower at 124 million nevertheless it made money, when the profit is lower than the first film, you have to wonder why because there are always more than 1 factor in a lot of cases.
Lets talk about the plot, the film picks up sometime after the events of the first film. Ben played by Hart is now a rookie cop but is at home helping to plan for his wedding. James who is played by Ice Cube is working another big case which he must go to Miami to solve the case which by convincing their LT, Ben gets to go with him to prove he is more than a joke, Now being James’ partner he dubs them the Brothers In Law. Which James can’t stand but in Miami they come across an important hacker played by Ken Jeong who has information to help them but they quickly learn this isn’t a easy task because the main bad guy is a high end person with a lot of connections which he uses to slow them down but nevertheless the brothers in law solves the case and Ben gets home in time for the wedding.
There was no doubt that the laughs did come in this film with the three top stars. However they could have used a few more jokes to keep the laughs going but with these buddy cop films there needs to be some seriousness some where which divides the fans up a little. the action was another case where it just needed to be more to help carry the laughs. The biggest highlight has to be their little twist with the high speed car chase in which Ben uses turn signals to make his turns only to use it against the people that are chasing them. Car chases are too common in films and it is nice to see something different in them. I believe the movie didn’t do as well as the first because one it wasn’t that much better then the first film but also Star Wars returned to the big screen and that film took a lot of the market. In the end I am giving it a B for a grade because A lot of magic was there but it just needed so much more!
By Paul Anthony
We all know actors and actresses are different people behind and in front of the camera and Ellen DeGeneres is no different. Last few weeks I have been seeing articles Ellen more than ever before and they have not been pretty at all. We know on camera she is this funny, loveable person that has a few shows on T.V. that we watch almost everyday if not twice a day depending on the day. But we have to wonder if there is an dark side to her, a side that we haven’t seen but others have? It first started with high executives being accused of being toxic which is the kindest thing I could hear about them. We know how the show Biz works Ellen is just one piece of show, there are many more pieces that run the show.
So I gave Ellen a break but now there are reports coming out and other famous people preaching that the person who you see on camera isn’t the same person behind the camera. Even one person claim to call her the meanest person alive. Is there two sides of a person? Yes even you have two sides of your own self but the question is that is this true. Is it fact or opinion, that is the main question. Some actors have sided with Ellen stating nothing but good things with her, while others stated that she isn’t so nice.
The staff of her show has had a high turn over rate which many have stated that there is racism, sexual Misconduct and harassment, and Producers do whatever they please in the office. We know Warner bros decided to conduct interviews with the staff of the show and they admit that there are issues but nothing on the level that is being thrown out there. So the main question is then who is lying about what? Is Ellen a bad person who is a fake or are these staff and other people were just bitter about a personal experience with dealing with her?
Another set of rumors have been going around that Ellen may quit the show because she feels betrayed by her staff and if these rumors are false then I can’t blame her. However Warner Bros did say that the show will return early next month as scheduled. I wonder if Ellen will address all these issues and either fix them and move on or admit to something but we shall see in the near future.
By: Justin Hopkins
Psych was one of my favorite TV Shows during it’s run on USA. Telling the story of super sleuth, Shawn Spencer. A guy capable of picking up every detail in a room the moment he walks into it. Who uses this to help the Santa Barbara Police, under the guise of being a Psychic Detective along his reluctant friend Burton Guster. Eight season of funny and charming moments and a pretty goods movie along the way. Was over the moon excited to hear about this one and what they had in store this time around. So, with this being late as it is, (Sorry), lets dive in shall we.
We get things started with little Lassiter, on a walk through the woods with his Dad. Talking about the strength of the Lassiter families ability to grow legendary beards, but the most important part is their queen, before his Dad disappears. Leaving him scared and alone. Before jumping back to modern day, and Lassie is on the ground. Two bullets in his chest and a gunman in front of him. Doesn’t remember how he got there. Begging for him not to kill him. A plea that goes unheard and shot again. A shot that leads to a stroke. He wakes up in a nursing home, to Shawn and Gus. Surprising him with a dog Morrissey. When the nurse tries to get them to take the Dog away. They leave with her convincing her to let the dog to stay is they tell her why they are really there. Where we learn that he had called them in secretly for things he has been seeing and doesn’t want anyone to know, for fear people will think he is crazy. While she tells them that what he has been seeing is delusions in his mind. From stress, medication, and the Stroke and they are not doing him any favors by feeding into it. When they go back, find the dog had jumped out of the window. They are going to turn him down, but the dog returns with a severed hand. They ship the hand to Woody and return to their old office. Finding it had been turned into a pop-up Cat Restaurant. Due to Shawn’s Dad sub-renting the office space when they failed to notify the owner of their departure. After some bickering agrees to help them find the stuff they left behind. Meanwhile, we see Juliet arriving at Lassiter’s room. She too is working on his case. Showing him a picture of the guy who had been arrested for shooting him, only Lassiter doesn’t seem to convinced by this, but doesn’t want her to look into it. Having already been told twice to stop getting involved. Despite the fact she thinks there is more to it. Such as a missing bullet. Instead gets a 90 plus to do list. When she goes to leave, spots Morrissey’s dish. Calling Shawn to yell about him being there. Telling him it was fine and so was she. Only she tells him she is at the airport. When in reality, is at the scene where Lassie was shot. Find a homeless woman with a bullet wound in her leg. Later that night, neither of them share information just that they wouldn’t be working the case. Shawn especially, after getting the call that the hand belongs to a tech mogul who committed suicide by jumping off a bridge. Back with Lassiter though, after a sad, scared confession over his fears of not getting better and being a burden on his loved ones. Sees a man with a gun shot, going into the stables outside of his window. The next day Shawn and Gus try to turns down the job again, but he asks them to please keep looking into it. After finding nothing in the stables, they start to investigate the Mogul, Devon Tileback. Which leads them to a Viking Bar, and after an altercation and motorcycle chase that goes awry immediately. Find that Devon is alive. Having faked his death, but is shot before he could answer any of their questions. Turning out that Lassie may in fact be onto something much larger than what it seems and perfect spot for me to leave off with for the moment.
I got to give the writers so much credit for crafting this story so much around the limitations of Timothy Omundson. Who only had a brief cameo in the first movie, due to a real life stroke. They not only tailored Lassiter’s story arc so he could spent it in a bed or chair, but sure some of the lines must come from a real place in him after his stroke and giving us the tear jerking moment of him walking to Marlowe. Showed just how important every member of the group is and just nice to see them do what they had to do to give him a place in the movie.
The group doesn’t feel like they have missed a beat. everyone’s chemistry still going strong. The humor was way more hits than misses. From Morrissey to the back and forth between Shawn and Gus and pretty much everyone that had to deal with their hi-jinks. Felt like they were right back into the swing of things. The mystery seemed to take a back seat at times, but was passable enough for the story they were trying to tell, and the pregnancy angle, was kind of obvious that it was not Juliet’s. Did give us a heartfelt moment between Shawn and Henry, which are always the best, and the stellar proposal between Gus and Selene. I so, hope we get to see that wedding. It would just be outrageously over the top and I am one hundred percent all for it.
On the negative side of the ball. Probably could have done the reveal of Dolores being behind everything a little better than what they did. It works as it gives Lassiter his sense of power back, but felt lacking especially with the conversations she was having with Shawn and Gus and Mary’s part felt really just dumb and his lines were the worse part of the movie. Love seeing Mary, but he didn’t work at all here.
I normally talk about the cast, but they all do fantastic at this point. They know their characters so well that it’s magic anytime they are together. If you haven’t seen it, download peacock and give it a watch. Going to have a great time with it and hope this is not the last time we see them all together. Final Grade – A +
As always, I hope you enjoyed and…
Thank You For Reading
By Paul Anthony
Often to to not this is the film that the general public has forgotten about. Sure in the time since it was released it does have a cult following and of course I am talking about Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge. The film was released just one year later from the first film which had been a hit in the slasher film genre and it was clear that Freddy could be a big name player in the genre but this sequel was very important for that statement to become true. By it’s release date we had so many players in the game now that the genre was losing its popularity, Sure we had Jason on his fifth film, we had Halloween on its third film, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Sleepaway Camp and Prom Night and Amityville Horror and so many more that Freddy had to fight for his share in a market that at this point might have been dying. The film made money because of its small budget which was 3 million and grossed nearly 30 million. These numbers were down and up from the first film. The First film had a budget of 1.8 million and grossed 57 million. Critics gave mixed reviews and with fatigue kicking in, it made sense to why this film made less then the first but we also have the plot to focus on as well.
The Film picks up 5 years after the events of the first film. And we told about the events of the first film that Nancy went crazy after see her boyfriend get killed next door and so forth, though we know it was all Freddy. Here we meet Jesse who now has moved into the same house with his family and right off the bat he begins to have nightmares with Freddy in them which always causes him to wake up screaming, which annoys his sister but concerns his parents. Through the first half of the film we see Jesse in school and with his friends and girlfriend Lisa. Soon after that we start to see Jesse personality changes because now Freddy is using his body as a vessel to begin his killings again. Though for the most part we don’t see Freddy doing it just Jesse until the end when the Freddy fully emerges and taunts the teens at Lisa’s Pool party, though Freddy can’t hurt Lisa because of the love Jesse has for Lisa, she realizes this and uses that to defeat Freddy and Jesse is saved but the movie ends with Freddy’s return taking Jesse and Lisa and other school teens on one hell of a ride leaving the door open for a third film that would save the series for years to come.
Some of the knocks I think was going against this film was one it came out a year later, so everything from the story to the graphics felt rushed which hurt the quality of the film. The story seemed rushed from the start. We know Jesse’s family just moved in but there was no build up to Freddy’s return, the movie started and we had Freddy’s return. That’s the the next knock as well, very little amount of Freddy in this story and with no real build it up, It did hurt the film. This movie basically seemed like this would be a direct to Video type of movie and not a movie that would be released on the big screen. In the end I am giving this movie a D for a rating but we all know it made enough money to get us to Part 3.
By Paul Anthony
Here we are in a new time period for films because of the outbreak that the world is going through currently, three months ago when this all started a feud actually started between Universal and the largest movie theater chain that is AMC. The feud started because Universal decided to release Trolls to home rentals and saw a good number in return and this sparked them to announced that they may start to release films early and at home rentals which the average price was around 20 dollars. this prove to be a successful move but AMC took offense to these comments and this is how this feud started. now we know we would have a winner and a loser in this feud but who and could a deal be reached?
We now know that a deal has been reached and this might be a game changer in the industry. The deal is between Universal and AMC which AMC will have the film for 17 days after it is released before Universal will decide to release the film on PVOD. We know from common sense this window could last longer depending on how well the movie does at the box office. Sure the film can make money on PVOD but most likely not as much as it would in a theater. Mostly because the the cost of a ticket per person. It is a well known fact to rent a movie for 20 dollars for a family would be cheaper then buying 4 tickets or so. At the end of the day both parties wanted to make money but more so Universal needed to be smart and look at the numbers correctly but also be loyal to the fanbase that love their movies.
We now have to wonder what will follow after this deal between the two giants. Will more giants follow this path. We see already everything is right now taking a hit because of this outbreak situation. When seen films like My spy head to Amazon just so we can watch it but Big budget films have yet to be release because studios know that they could lose money by going to PVOD so theaters know that they will have the movie for sometime but the question is now for long. Studios might want to wait to see how all this plays out, no doubt that Universal has a big films coming out in 2021 and if this deal fails or hurts the studio. Then we know PVOD wasn’t all it was cracked up to be and this idea will fade.
PVOD is a nice thing but it takes away the most popular date idea in history, a Dinner and movie with a night out on the town and as Justin spoke some movies are better on the big screen. Just listen to his review of the film Becky, he clearly states this film would have been better on the big screen. Trolls may have been a fluke because it was a family movie and the outbreak just started and people needed to watch something as the fear started to sit in with people. In the end time will tell how this deal will work out with all parties.
Listening to “What is an Easter Egg??” at https://www.buzzsprout.com/285696/4704698-what-is-an-easter-egg
What is a Movie Easter Egg??
By Paul Anthony
One of the first shows that I got into as a kid growing up that wasn’t a cartoon or sitcom had to be this show Unsolved Mysteries. Like many of the fans of the show I would watch reruns and when they brought the show back in 2008 I would watch those episodes as well then the show ended again and for ten long years the show was on ice until now when Netflix brought it back and of course I had to watch it and though the season only consist of 6 episodes so far with another 6 on the way but the question becomes did these episodes so far live up to the legacy of the show before it?
Let’s break down each episode plot for you first. As I mentioned before the show has 6 episodes so far with 6 more on the way. Episode one is about the death and disappearance of Rey Rivera and the episode is titled Mystery on the Rooftop. Second episode titled 13 minutes which involves Patrice Endres, a salon owner who disappears in a 13 minute window that she had for a break. Third episode titled House of Terror which involves the Dupont’s family Murder and the disappearance of the father and husband Xavier Dupont. Fourth Episode titled No Ride Home features the death of Alfonzo Brooks. Fifth episode is titled Berkshires UFO which the title basically explain the plot which was about the Berkshires county UFO sighting and Alien Adduction. The final episode is called the missing witness which is about Lena Chapin.
Each episode basically have the victim’s friends and family giving the good side of the victims and then explaining what could have happen and so forth and they also have former investigators of the crime to explain their side of things and why everything hasn’t been solved yet. Each episode in it’s own right is intense and gives you a good amount of details where you can come up with your own conclusion even if it you can’t prove it.
Ranking the episodes from my point of view goes a little like this. 1. Missing Witness, 2. No Ride Home, 3. Mystery on the Rooftop, 4. 13 Minutes, 5. Berkshires UFO and 6 House of Terror. The Missing Witness is my favorite by far because of the situation with the witness being the daughter of the murderer and when she is ready to tell the world key evidence about her missing Step-father, she to is killed with no body found and leaves behind a son that the mother who is the murderer has custody to and it is very twisted and just sad. My least favorite is House of Terror and its not a knock on the episode but I know it in involves an French family but having the entire episode in French and reading the subtitles as you are trying to follow the story was just not working for me.
The big and only con about this show is the fact it no longer has a host which does make it feel like every other Netflix show, but that is just being picky right there. In the end they did a great job with the show and I am looking forward to more episodes.
Please if you have any information regarding the cases of the show please go to http://www.unsolved.com
Will and Jada reaction and discussion!
youtu.be/V6Ey @YouTube #YouTube #WillSmith #jadaandwill #AugustAlsina #writerslift #marriage