Friday, June 22, 2018

HELL OR HIGH WATER (2016)

"Y'all been here for awhile?"

"Well, long enough to watch a bank getting robbed that's been robbing me for 30 years."


Two adult brothers (who must have seen too many reruns of THE GREAT TEXAS DYNAMITE CHASE on late night TV) start robbing small banks in West Texas to pay off their family ranch.  That part, while not original, is interesting.  Unfortunately, the filmmakers also decided that the film needed a cantankerous old lawman just shy of his retirement...cause, you know, that idea hasn't been done to death and back.

Anyway, HELL OR HIGH WATER is still a solid film.  I liked the way it looked and relationship between the two brothers.  More backstory would have added some much needed depth to their characters, but you can't have everything.  Zero nudity, nice photography, good acting by everybody (even Jeff Bridges who comes across like a 200 year-old version of Wilford Brimley), a couple of entertaining shoot-outs, good musical choices (that song played by the douches at the gas station was hilariously bad), reasonable pace, Texas looking a hell of a lot like New Mexico.

If you need me, I'll be in the bathroom shitting like an old goat.

This really isn't part of the review, but I just wanted to give a special recognition to Margaret Bowman as the "T-Bone Waitress".  She only had a few lines, but goddamn, she was absolutely perfect.  I watched that scene six times!  "So what don't cha want?!"

Monday, June 18, 2018

DEATH WISH (2018)

Meh.  I think the word "meh" not only accurately summarizes my feelings about this remake of 1974's DEATH WISH, but also my feelings about Eli Roth's entire directorial output.  CABIN FEVER?  It had it's moments. HOSTEL?  Yawn. THE GREEN INFERNO?  Double yawn.

Anyway, after quickly showing Bruce Willis with his picture perfect family and establishing that he's a "pussy", we get to the moment where his family is attacked.  And...it's about as lifeless and non-threatening as you would expect from an Eli Roth joint. After the PG-rated attack scene, ol' Bruce gets good and mad.  So mad that he starts watching online instructional videos about guns and self-defense!  Wow, that's so exciting.  Eventually, he does go out and gets his blast on, but it's completely by-the-numbers and boring.  The End.

Computer-generated blood, illogical story, lifeless photography, "I'm just here to collect a paycheck." acting, weak action scenes, zero nudity, zero thrills, soulless emotional scenes.  Worst of all was the annoying social commentary by the radio DJ's.  That was straight torture to listen to.  It subtracted from the film by even being there.

DEATH WISH (2018) isn't the worst thing in the world, just lame and forgettable.