Monday, March 25, 2019

VIRUS (1999)

"There's some really weird shit goin' down on this ship, man."

An alien spaceship(?) comprised of what looks to be pure energy [writer takes break to watch Information Society - "What's On Your Mind" music video on YouTube] passes through the Mir space station (the Mir was a space station that orbited the Earth from 1986 to 2001).  The pass-through kills all of the astronauts on the Mir and beams a signal down to a research vessel in the South Pacific.  Some time later, a tugboat happens across the research vessel during a typhoon.  Looking for shelter, the tugboat crew boards the research vessel only to find that the whole place is wrecked and it looks like a small battle happened onboard...plus, everybody is missing.

That's not really the most original idea ever, but in the correct hands, the mystery could turn out to be awesome!  Unfortunately, the people who made this film were not the correct hands.  It ends up the energy beam took over the electrical equipment on the ship (think MAXIMUM OVERDRIVE at sea) and viewing the humans as a virus, it started killing them in anyway it could.  Whether by nail gun or anchor drop or building a Terminator-like robot out of a corpse and giving it a gun.  That sounds exciting, but for a whole host of reasons, VIRUS is not exciting.

Mediocre acting that honestly seemed like the actors didn't care, poor lighting, messy action scenes full of people yelling and sparks flying all over the joint, zero nudity, very light gore, medium pace, dated special effects, forgettable characters, boring dialogue, abrupt ending that was only satisfying in that I could turn off the movie and do something else.

VIRUS would be worth watching in the middle of the night if it came on TV and you were too lazy to turn the channel, but that's about it.

Monday, March 11, 2019

MILLION DOLLAR MYSTERY (1987)

"Time dragged by like a gut-shot parakeet."

Borrowing heavily from the basic idea of IT'S A MAD, MAD, MAD, MAD WORLD, MILLION DOLLAR MYSTERY tells the story of a bunch of obnoxious assholes who just happen to be at a roadside diner when a guy who stole $4 million from the government wanders in and dies.  He uses his dying breaths to give these ungrateful assholes clues to where he's hidden the $4 million in four different locations.  A million in each location.  After he dies, they leave his body to the buzzards and drive like absolute maniacs from location to location looking for the money.  For the entire movie, they're all completely incapable of driving in a straight line or at the speed limit.  It's like they're purposely trying to call attention to themselves.  And attention they get, cause before long there's so many assholes crowding in trying to fuck one another over for the money that they can't even fit in the screen.  Not that that's a bad thing.  I like movies with a large cast of characters, it's just that all of the characters in this film are unlikable and too dumb to live.

Lazy jokes galore, dull writing, zero nudity, zero violence, the promise of a "Toxic Werewolf" listed in the credits but it ended up just being a guy making crazy faces, a truck bed filled with loose soccer balls, crappy looking cars, lots of yelling, maybe two jokes in the entire film that I actually got a smile out of, overacting overdose, Eddie Deezen's talents wasted.

After watching the film, I was doing some research and discovered that MILLION DOLLAR MYSTERY was actually part of a contest put on by a trash bag company!  That probably explains why the script was such rubbish.  The good news is I found another newspaper article that stated the film company had a $15.5 million dollar loss on the movie.  I got a bigger chuckle out of that than anything in the movie itself.