Blog Archives

FTMN Quickie/Almost Super: P.U.N.K.S.

Almost Super: P.U.N.K.S. 1999

I have gone back and forth on whether or not to write something about this film here on this site, but since I had gone almost two weeks without writing anything here, I figured I might as well get something out of the time I spent watching this movie. Since this is a niche movie site, I have certain criteria on what films I review for this site, but the definition of “superhero movie” is nebulous at best so sometimes a short description of a movie sounds like it could fit this site, but when I watch it, it actually doesn’t. I was trying to start watching some kids movies based on a Twitter poll I posted a week or so ago gauging what I should watch next for this site, and P.U.N.K.S. is on YouTube so that’s what I went for. Needless to say, it’s a pretty bad film even if it does have the likes of Randy Quaid, Henry Winkler, and a young Jessica Alba.
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Almost Super: The Demolisher

The Demolisher 2015

I often find it fascinating where my whims take me. Lately, I have been making more of a point to borrow movies from my local library and I’m often surprised by the smaller, independent movies that they have available. During my last trip, I saw a blu-ray on their new release shelf that caught my eye. It was called the Demolisher, the font of the title had a comic book feel to it, and reading the back of the box it looked and sounded like a cross between the Punisher, and possibly Judge Dredd just based on the riot gear outfit. I didn’t pick it up right away, but I did check out the trailer and was impressed enough to check it out the next time I was there. While I ultimately decided that it didn’t quite fit my criteria for a superhero movie: there is a costume, but not really any alter ego, and it’s more about vengeance than vigilantism. But after watching it, I did find the film rather fascinating and well made enough that I wanted to talk about it here on this site. The cinematography is gorgeous in places, and the film doesn’t fall into the low budget trap of too much expository dialogue, instead it allows the scene to play out often silently, or near silently. It’s not a perfect film by any means, but it was quite fascinating.
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Almost Super: Remo Williams

Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins 1985

Lately, I’ve gone back and forth about what movies I include in the comic book and superhero category. Often times in the past, I have preferred to err on the side of inclusion, but lately I’ve started to go against that considering I decided to exclude the “superhero” movie The Adventures of Food Boy that really had nothing to do with superheroes. Remo Williams is one of those that falls closer to the lines of Buckaroo Bonzai, plus the fact that he has some extraordinary abilities learned through the martial art of Sinanju, and he has his identity changed from his previous life as a cop. But I decided that those for whatever reason just aren’t quite enough for me and this film falls a little bit more on the line of a martial arts/spy film rather than a superhero film. There were even comic books made based on this character, but they came out after this film. The film itself was a lot of fun mired behind a lack of focus and pacing, almost a parody of action/spy films while still taking itself mostly seriously.
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Graphic Horror: Afflicted

Graphic Horror: Afflicted 2014

Even though my blogathon is over, I like the tag “Graphic Horror” enough that I’ll be keeping it and using it right alongside “Almost Super” for horror movies that aren’t quite superhero movies, even if they are based on graphic novels and therefore included in my big list of superhero and comic book movies. When I saw the trailer and early promotional tweets about this movie I was very interested. It was a found footage movie very similar in style to Chronicle only with a horror twist to it, where these two friends go on a world trip and one of them catches something that starts to make him sick, but then gives him superpowers before taking a much darker turn. There was another element to the story that the PR wanted to keep a secret, but I didn’t go digging into what it was until they decided it wasn’t that big of a secret to keep once it hit its wide release and I found out that the superpowers were brought on because he is becoming a vampire. This actually made me a little bit more interested in the movie because I’m always a fan of vampire movies and I thought this would do for vampire movies that Chronicle did for superhero movies and I think I was right.
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Graphic Horror: Alien

Graphic Horror: Alien 1979

This is something that I haven’t done very much since starting my Filmwhys podcast, and that is to go back and watch an essential movie that I hadn’t seen, only I didn’t do it to talk about during an episode of Filmwhys. (Instead I’m talking about it here in a review) Before now I had seen Aliens a few times, and somehow skipped ahead and watched AvP in theaters, but never went back to watch the original even though there’s always the debate over which is the better movie: Alien or Aliens. For my part, I don’t think I’ll ever like this one as much as Aliens, but it is still a great movie that I really enjoyed. And for the record, I did watch the 2003 Ridley Scott director’s cut of the movie instead of the theatrical release, although I didn’t go back and check to see what the differences between the two versions are.
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Almost Super: Demolition Man

Almost Super: Demolition Man 1993

I realized that it’s been quite a while since I’ve written one of these “Almost Super” reviews. And this past weekend I watched Demolition Man which had me thinking through most of the movie that it feels like it could easily be the prequel to Judge Dredd. It’s got Rob Schneider in it, and though it may be set in a utopian future rather than a dystopian future it has a similar feel to it. Well, a similar feel to the trailers that I’ve seen for Judge Dredd since I haven’t technically watched that one just yet. It also happened to be the Movie Of The Month over at the Lamb so I thought it would be a perfect movie to use my tag for movies that aren’t quite a superhero movie, but share a lot of the same qualities with them. Anyway, for the actual movie itself, Demolition Man was a fun little 90’s cheesy action movie with both Sylvester Stallone and Wesley Snipes hamming it up with as many action one-liners as they can fit into their dialogue. It had a lot of really odd future ideas in it, but it was a fun ride while it lasted.
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Almost Super: The Matrix

Almost Super: The Matrix 1999

This was a bit of a tough decision on whether or not to tag this movie with my “Almost Super” tag. This is very much like a superhero origin story, Neo has superhuman abilities, even an alter ego, and the visuals are very influenced by comic books in some places. But in the end, the philosophical elements and especially the sci-fi setting to it put this in the realm of a not-quite superhero. I saw this in theaters when it first came out, as well as the two sequels which I don’t think are as bad as everyone makes them out to seem, even though I won’t be continuing on to watch them just now. The movie was one of the biggest surprises to come out that year, it had a great marketing campaign with the question “What is the Matrix?” and it’s pretty much a cultural milestone, noted by the hundreds of bullet time Trinity jump kick parodies over the years. But even with the parodies doing their best to tarnish several of the scenes, the movie still holds up as one of the best movies out there.

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Almost Super: Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters

Almost Super: Hansel & Gretel

I was somewhat caught off guard when I saw the trailer just a couple weeks ago. While the Avengers was my favorite superhero movie of all time, Hawkeye was the weakest part of the movie, and I hadn’t heard much good about The Bourne Supremacy, the trailer looked like a lot of fun. In the end, my expectations were mediocre at best. But while there were a few parts of the movie that went a little too far into ridiculous territory, it was generally a lot of mindless fun.
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Almost Super: Krull

Almost Super: Krull 1983

Nostalgiathon 2012

As you may have seen in my previous post, I just recently watched Krull for our latest As You Watch podcast. We decide the movie for each episode based on a short list of movies from the four of us, and Krull was picked from my list. I’ve enjoyed this movie since I was young, finding and watching every fantasy based movie I could find, so I thought this movie would also be a perfect fit with the Nostalgiathon hosted by Cinema Schminema and Andy Watches Movies, because while I still enjoy the movie, it turns out that practically no one else does. Including all four of my co-hosts for the episode. The pacing may be sluggish, the characters may be weak, the story may be derivative, but I still love this movie.

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Almost Super: Wreck-it Ralph

Wreck-It Ralph 2012

So once again this year I made the trek to my local movie theater. More than superheroes, I’ve always been a big fan of animation, and on top of that, I’ve grown up with video games. Starting with a trusty Commodore 64 playing Jumpman, Circus, Snoopy, and other games before moving up to a Coleco Vision. I eventually moved up through the Sega Master System, NES, SNES, Playstation, PS2, and DS before moving onto the PC MMO City of Heroes, heck I even work in an arcade. I recognized many of the video games referenced, especially some of the classic arcade cabinets, as well as the games that inspired the original games featured in this movie. While Fix it Felix Jr. is an original game, it has its roots in Donkey Kong, Crazy Climber, and a touch of Rampage. Sugar Rush which is a candy version of Mario Kart/Nicktoons Racing, and Hero’s Duty is essentially every modern rail shooter ever. This movie was pretty much made for me to like it and I was in from the very opening.

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