Thursday, February 28, 2008
ANSWER: A Late Nite Landfill documentary film about party people spending most of their time in an inebriated state, making foolish choices, acting stupidly and having irresponsible sex!
Remember my post last week about the Razzies? Well this film, directed by “reality” specialist Rick de Oliveira, was actually nominated by the Razzies for the prestigious honor of “Worst Movie of 2003.” If not for the existence of its competition, “Gigli,” perhaps it would have won that honor.
Maybe the programmers at ABC will pick up Oliveira’s “Road to Menudo” at some point. We can only hope...
Meanwhile, in “The Real Cancun” (take note: whenever you see the words “real” or “reality,” as in “reality TV,” you can be certain that what you’re seeing is contrived at best), MTV gives the “Real World” treatment to a group of strangers they’ve thrown together and set loose in the title’s den of iniquity during Spring Break.
Zap2it.com’s description was more concise and snappier than mine – I really can’t put it better than this:
“Sixteen teenagers and twentysomethings spend their Mexican vacation in various stages of undress and inebriation.”
With all the sexcapades both that description and the trailer allude to (reports claim real encounters were filmed with cameras strategically placed to avoid an NC-17 rating), and noting that the film will have to be edited for broadcast TV, one wonders how they expect to fill the entire 2 hour alloted time slot. Longer commercial breaks perhaps?
Among the teenagers rock ‘n rollin’ all night and partying ev-er-y day, blonde Laura Ramsey has actually gone on to an acting career, including some notable indies and a role opposite Amanda Bynes in Disney’s “She’s the Man;” although a peek at her imdb.com filmography suggests it’s mostly been Late Nite Landfill quality fare for her so far.
Watch the trailer here (WARNING: The following trailer contains adult subject matter):
Or view the entire movie this Saturday, March 1st on NYC’S WABC-TV Channel 7 at 11:35PM… if you dare!
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
ANSWER: If the trailer to “Sol Goode” is any indication, apparently so!
The main players are a veritable who’s who of the “direct-to-video” industry. Balthazar Getty – has he ever been the lead in an “A” picture? And silicone-enhanced Carmen Elektra and Tori Spelling as bimbo-ed up versions of Betty and Veronica who might be at home working at the Pussycat Doll Café.
Someone named Danny Comden’s “Cooper” character gets good notices in the “User Comments” on imdb.com, but I’ve never heard of him... and his character sounds very “been there, seen that” to me. Turns out he directed the film, too… guess he was his own first choice for the typical sex comedy’s clichéd Spicoli/Kramer/Dude hodge-podge.
Despite those demerits in the top slots, there are some game supporting performers in this – Cheri Oteri is almost always funny, attractive and usually gives 150%. Jason Bateman is a genius in my opinion. Robert Wagner has perfected a wonderful self-parody of himself for at least the past 15 years. His step-daughter Natasha Gregson Wagner does a turn here as well. Jamie Kennedy’s career has overall been a mixed-bag, but I give him points for trying different things and not being so predictable. But the problem is, unlike our DVR, DVD and VHS players, broadcast TV has no fast-forward button. I’m not sure I want to trade in my sleep to find out if these troopers put in good work here.
In the end, despite the inevitable redemption this story may offer, it’s evident from the trailer that this is pretty much an R-rated, raunchy “Ferris Beuller.” If forcing yourself to stay awake for fart, vomit and sex jokes is your thing, dig in.
Watch the trailer here (WARNING: The following trailer contains [im]mature subject matter):
Or view the entire movie this Sunday, March 2nd on NYC’S WABC-TV Channel 7 at 11:35 PM… if you dare!
Thursday, February 21, 2008
Here's "compelling" footage of 7 men placing the giant Oscar statue on its stand from last year's ceremonies:
Rarely will you find a "Late Nite Landfill" movie an Oscar(R) winner, let alone being nominated for one. However, I wouldn't be surprised if some of ABC's Late Nite Landfill excavations have been past winners or nominees of the Razzies. In fact, I suspect this year's leading contender, "I Know Who Killed Me" with Lindsey Lohan, will someday end up on the ABC late night schedule.
So... if you want to learn more about the Razzies, and see this year's list of nominees here's a link to their official site:
It's called "Amongst Friends," and as both the title and the trailer point out in such sledgehammer-obvious fashion, these are the kind of friends for which one doesn't need enemies. Yes, the trailer for this one trots out all the cliches - the bored rich kids, the concerned girlfriend, the calorically-challenged goofy guys who are there for comic relief (and probably to get whacked), the stoic dressed-to-the-nines-because-I'm-pretending-to-be-legit guy who doesn't flinch even though guns are in his face, and a couple of old-time gangsters bemoaning the fate of their younger counterparts - except this time they seem more like retired Borchst Belt comics than hardened old hit men!
Lots of actors here I don't recognize - it's a mix of folks with only 1 to 3 credits to their name and character actors with tons of credits but you couldn't pick most of them out of a line-up because their roles are usually inconsequential.
Only Mira Sorvino is instantly recognizable here. This is her second theatrical feature. Three years later, she won a Best Actress Oscar for her role in Woody Allen’s “Mighty Aphrodite” (hmmm… maybe ABC decided to show “Amongst Friends” now since it’s Oscar weekend?.... NAH!). After a few more notable roles, she dated Quentin Tarantino for a spell and appeared at his behest alongside his hero Chow Yun Fat in “The Replacement Killers;” then proceeded to have an erratic career checkered with both decent films AND those that make perfect fodder for the Late Nite Landfill.
Mira's brother Michael is also in "Amongst Friends," essaying the role of "Kid in Fight."
The movie is directed by Rob Weiss, who has since found his way out of obscurity as a writer/producer on the acclaimed show, "Entourage."
View the trailer here:
Or watch the entire film on WABC-TV Channel 7, 11:35 PM On Saturday, February 23... if you dare!
Saturday, February 16, 2008
Television stations buy "packages" of movies. A "package" is a group of films offered by a syndicator that can include either a mix of various films with little connecting rhyme or reason, or a mix of films from the same owner/production company/distributor, or a mix of films built around a theme.
As you can tell from reading my previous posts, the late night, weekend Channel 7 movie slot uses movies from a "previously aired Lifetime Channel originals" package as well as a "direct-to-video/direct-to-late-night-cable R-rated movies" package.
Saturday night (February 16th), a movie from the third type of prevalent package is shown - a "black cinema" package. These are movies made by and starring African-Americans. And unlike the majority of movies in the other packages, these films are often quite good. Of course, the package is not completely devoid of clinkers, and if those turn up I'll more than likely comment on them, but how could I say anything in a typical Late Nite Landfill "look how cheesy this is" fashion about a movie that's not only a documentary, but one on Nelson Mandela? The answer is: I CAN'T. So I won't. If you're interested, it appears to be a documentary that was made for PBS's "Frontline" series back in 1999/2000, called "The Long Walk of Nelson Mandela."
The movie on Sunday (February 17th) sounds more in line with our usual fare. Although it has a serious topic at its core, someone who reviewed it at imdb said it was terrible (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0127545/usercomments).
Here's the decription from Zap2it.com's TV listing:
"Every Nine Seconds": A crisis center volunteer embarks on a desperate search for the woman who threatened to kill her abusive ex-husband."
It stars Amy Pietz, Christopher Meloni and Gail O'Grady. This opus is also knonw as "A Call for Help." It certainly sounds like it has all the earmarkings of
a Late Nite Landfill find.
Both movies air at 11:35 PM on WABC-TV Channel 7 In New York.
So I said I was taking the weekend off but managed to type a bunch of stuff anyway. But without a trailer to share, it really does feel like I'm taking the weekend off. Hopefully next weekend's offerings will enable me to offer some embedded-video goodies once again!
Friday, February 8, 2008
I have to admit, I've actually wanted to see this one for quite some time. It goes back to the late '90s, when, inspired by screenwriter William C. Martell I got this idea in my head that I could churn out direct-to-video (DTV) screenplays as well as anyone (my produced screenplays to date: zero!)
When renting another DTV movie, I noticed the trailer for this one and thought, "this might be fun." It seems to have all the elements: providing the action is a guy who looks like a nice guy but can kick karate butt even though speaking seems to be a problem; joining him in the adventure are a wise-cracking African-American sidekick as well as a cute/ditzy girl to provide comic relief.
Sounds like a template for the “Rush Hour” flicks - the first of which it predates by a year.
Dacascos has made a career of such DTV actioners but did show up as the lead in the rather unique sci-fi period piece, 2001's “Brotherhood of the Wolf” from France.
That bright light may be an anomoly: he's currently appearing on Blockbuster Video shelves as the title character in the DTV “I Am Omega,” a shameless rip-off of the classic Richard Matheson story that manages to pilfer the titles of ALL the previous movie versions, taking the “I Am” from the current Will Smith smash, the “Omega” from Charlton Heston’s ‘80s starrer, and even using the wording “The Last Man on Earth” (title of the original '60s Vincent Price version) in both the trailer and as part of the descriptive copy on the front cover beneath the title!
Mark's co-stars do seem engaging in this trailer (or maybe I'm just delirious): Kadeem Hardison looks like he makes an entertaining turn here as the sidekick, and you may (or may not) recognize the girl - she's Brittany Murphy back in her much-cuter (IMO) “Clueless” days - when she WASN'T an emaciated, bleached blonde.
Check out the trailer here (WARNING: the following contains brief, graphic language):
Or watch the entire movie on WABC-TV Channel 7 (NYC) on Sunday, Feburary 10th at 11:35... if you dare!
The difference? In Lifetime movies, the woman is almost always the good guy - the victim - who must combat the cheating, nefarious man or men in her life. In scorned mistress/seductress flicks, the woman is the bad guy, the "other" woman adept at tricking and tempting the "good guy" - the male victim (give me a break) - into cheating on his wife (yeah, these are real "good" guys - NOT)! The other difference is the Cinemax/Showtime movies often show the skin that the Lifetime movies can't... at least until they make it onto channel 7 in edited form.
I'd love to show you a trailer, TV commercial or even a clip from this movie, but I could find none. The plot does sound like typical B-movie badness: in order to gain a family inheritance, a man must have a son - but his wife is pregnant with a girl! Now, the man will stop at nothing to get that son and claim his inheritance. Hoo boy. Read more at Lifetime's site:
I don't want to leave you video-less here, however. Let's talk about the director. His name is Oley Sassone, son of the famous hair product mogul Vidal Sassoon. I can't imagine there's anyone out there who hasn't heard of Vidal, but if not, here's a fittingly cheesy 1980s-era commercial for his wares:
Oley is infamous for a noted wedge of cheese himself: the never-officially-released-to-the-public (but available as a bootleg for years) original 1994 version of "The Fantastic Four," based on the famous Marvel comic book. Produced by Roger Corman (who should need no introduction, but in case you don't know him, start your web search now).
The thing about this cheese is, even during its worst moments, it is pretty engaging and entertaining. And in retrospect, it turns out the big-budget 2005 version with Jessica Alba and Michael Chiklis only slightly improved on this paltry-budgeted initial attempt. Personally, I didn't find much improvement in the script, acting or effects in the recent blockbuster. At least the '90s original had a naive charm buried in its cheesy-bad goodness. Here's the trailer:
To watch "Cradle of Lies," tune in to WABC-TV Channel 7 (NYC) at 11:35 on Saturday, February 9th... if you dare!
Saturday, February 2, 2008
STEP 2: Steal the cool transform-o-pod from the Jeff Golblum remake of “The Fly.”
STEP 3: Make sure you have absolutely NO budget for special effects, so symbiotic fluid really looks just like cake mix.
STEP 4: Hire Jean-Claude Van Damme.
View the trailer here:
Or watch the entire movie Sunday, February 3rd, 2008 at 11:35 on WABC-TV Channel 7 - if you dare!
This one stars Michael Rapapport. When not playing the dumb jock in romantic comedies, Rapapport's other favorite role has been that of a poor man’s Michael Madsen. And when you consider how many films Madsen’s made that are already perfect fodder for The Late Nite Landfill, well, the word “diluted” comes to mind.
Frank Whaley has made a career of playing the put-upon guy who’s smarter than he lets on in such classics as “Swimming with Sharks” and “Pulp Fiction.” When his agent handed him this script, it appears he was only put-upon!
Lainie Kazan is an acquired taste that many find hard-to-take. If the editing in this trailer is to be believed, however, those who don’t like her may enjoy her character’s outcome. Unless of course it’s a trailer cheat!
Late Nite Landfill movies are notorious for having eclectic casts who have seen better days or have always been on the “fringe” at best. Debra Harry provides that fringe element, while Ally Sheedy and Robin Givens have become mainstays of such fare. Apparently no one is sending any “Karate Kid” or “My Cousin Vinny” sequel scripts Ralph Macchio’s way, so he might as well chew up all the scenery he can until his next daring assignment in the world of cinemuck arrives!
View the trailer here (WARNING: the following contains graphic language and violence):
Or watch the entire movie tonight (February 2nd, 2008) at 11:35 on WABC-TV Channel 7 - if you dare!