#496 – BASEketball

•October 21, 2011 • Leave a Comment

RLEASED: 1998

DIRECTED BY: David Zucker

STARRING: Trey Stone, Matt Parker, Dian Bachar, Yasmine Bleeth, Jenny McCarthy, Ernest Borgnine and Robert Vaughn

FAVE QUOTE: You’re excited? Feel these nipples!” – Bob Costas

FAVE MOMENT: Has to be when Trey Stone does the Eric Cartman voice to put off someone.

AWARDS: None

SYNOPSIS


Two losers from Milwaukee, Coop & Remer, invent a new game playing basketball, using baseball rules. When the game becomes a huge success, they, along with a billionaire’s help, form the Professional Baseketball League where everyone gets the same pay and no team can change cities. Coop & Remer’s team, the Milwaukee Beers is the only team standing in the way of major rule changes that the owner of the Dallas Felons wants to institute.

VERDICT

In at number 496 is BASEketball.

BASEketball stars the creators of South Park, Trey Stone and Matt Parker as two idiots who end up creating a new sport that becomes an overnight sensation that anyone can play in and quickly takes off, becoming globalised through television. When the founder of the Baseketball League dies suddenly, Baxter Cain (Robert Vaughn) steps in to takeover and plans to commericalise the sport to make more money.

Created by David Zucker (Man behind Airplane!), this film is a basic satire on american sports in general, about how figureheads run and drain the love out of the sport by moving teams to other states for some profit etc and does it in a really funny way. Trey Stone plays Joe Cooper, one of the men that is resposnible for the creation of the sport along with his best friend Doug Remer, played by Matt Parker, who doesn’t really have much of a brain between those ears.

Also in the film is Jenna Reed (Yasmine Bleeth) who puts the boys in a middle of a love triangle during the film and eventually Doug ‘sells out’ and becomes the pin-up poster idol for the Baseketball Franchise, putting the boys friendship in jeopardy.

Decent enough performances outside of the Stone and Parker circle and some classic one-liners, fans of the South Park creators should check this out.

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#497 – Undercover Brother

•October 21, 2011 • Leave a Comment

RELEASED: 2002

DIRECTED BY: Malcolm D Lee

STARRING: Eddie Griffin, Chris Kattan, Dave Chappelle, Aunjanue Ellis, Denise Richards, Neil Patrick Harris, Billy Dee Williams and Chi McBride

FAVE QUOTE: “You mess with the ‘fro, you got to go – Undercover Brother

FAVE MOMENT: The beginning of the fight scene between Undercover Brother & Mr Feather along to Michael Jackson’s ‘Beat It’.

AWARDS: WAFCA (Best Guilty Pleasure)

SYNOPSIS

Anton Jackson is an African-American man who seems harmless enough on the surface, but is a secret agent in the all-black Brotherhood, an entity that levels the playing field against the all-white establishment. Partnered with the sassy, stunning Sistah Girl, our hero must first undergo the ultimate attitude adjustment and trade in his ‘fro and platforms for tennis sweaters and penny loafers. Once the transformation is complete, he’s ready to take on the evil perpetrators of Operation Whitewash–Mr Feather, Penelope Snow aka White She Devil, and, ultimately, The Man.


VERDICT

Many will call foul play with my list (mainly with the order) but now at number 497 is Undercover Brother. It would be easy to suggest this as the black Austin Powers but it’s funkier and to me a whole lot funnier (not a fan of the Austin Powers series). Undercover Brother goes where other blaxploitation films have gone…and then some.

Originally Undercover Brother started off as an internet series written by John Ridley and he’s also written the feature film  and some of the dialogue is hilarious (most notably the best lines are given to Dave Chappelle’s character Conspiracy Brother). The set designs of The Man’s hideout as well as the B.R.O.T.H.E.R.H.O.O.D base are well done (considering the film had an estimated budget of around $25 million and grossed twice the amount) and the film flows well and is easy to follow (the key element for any comedy).

Eddie Griffin is great in the role of Undercover Brother, for me it’s always his reactions to things that someone says or does always gets me laughing but the star of the show is Dave Chappelle for his comic timing of his lines, which as stated before, the best lines are given to him (you can’t beat an OJ joke, they will never get old). Chris Kattan is decent aswell as the villain of the piece Mr Feather, though where has Kattan gone to now these days? Denise Richards is suitably cast in the role of White She Devil to be the seductive pretty face and Aunjanue Ellis is good as well as Sistah Girl and the fight between her and White She Devil is another memorable moment in the film.

So funnier and funkier than the Austin Powers series and with a theme tune you’d be huming til next week, it’s a good film for you to check out if you haven’t. Just a pity that the long awaited sequel may never show it’s face to the public domain as the audience is out there waiting.

Look out for the random cameo from James Brown.

#498 – A Night At The Roxbury

•October 21, 2011 • Leave a Comment

RELEASED: 1998

DIRECTED BY: John Fortenberry

STARRING: Will Ferrell, Chris Kattan, Jennifer Coolidge, Loni Anderson, Dan Hedaya, Molly Shannon, Richard Grieco and Chazz Palminteri

FAVE QUOTE: I was like EMILIO!” – Steve Butabi

FAVE MOMENT: The wedding scene where Steve hits on the bridesmaid, Eva Mendes, just before he’s about to get married. Just as he’s about to kiss the bride, Doug shows up, boombox and all, to the sound of Haddaway’s ‘What Is Love’. I dare you not to bob your head.

AWARDS: None

SYNOPSIS

Steve and Doug Butabi dream of opening their own club as cool as the Roxbury. The problem is, they are so uncool, they’ve never even been inside the Roxbury. They still live at home and work at a plant store owned by their dad who is pressuring Steve to marry Emily, the daughter of the owner of the neighboring lamp store.

VERDICT

At number 498 is Ferrell and Kattan in A Night At The Roxbury. The film stars Will Ferrell and Chris Kattan as idiot brothers (no…yes) Steve and Doug Butabi, where Doug dreams of one day having the coolest club in all of Roxbury while Steve doesn’t really think at all.

Spawned into a feature length film after several sketches as the Butabi brothers on Saturday Night Live, it’s strange to think at the time, Chris Kattan was expected to be the latest one from the SNL crew to breakout into the film business  and Will Ferrell was just really starting to come into his own. How times have changed. Well put it this way, Will Ferrell is still front lining films (even if most of them out outside of either his Adam McKay or John C Reilly collaborations tank at the box office), last time I seen Chris Kattan was the advert from either Pepsi or Coke during the Superbowl gimmicking the Haddaway ‘What Is Love’ song with head bobbing ala A Night At The Roxbury.

The film hasn’t really dated well in recent times (the mobile phones are the size of a fucking brick for starters) and some of the dialogue is as cheesy as a chicago town pizza but that’s the essence of the film. With a cheesefest filler of 90′s songs (from Real McCoy ‘Another Night’ to No Mercy ‘Where Do You Go’) to some interesting cameos (Eva Mendes, Michael Clarke Duncan and in a good sport  role is Richard Grieco playing himself) fans of Will Ferrell will love this and some may be disappointed that a certain Jim Carrey is not in the film. You know what I’m talking about.

#499 – Bronson

•October 21, 2011 • Leave a Comment

RELEASED:  2008

DIRECTED BY: Nicolas Winding Refn

STARRING: Tom Hardy, Kelly Adams, Katy Barker and Matt King

FAVE QUOTE:How would you feel, waking up in the morning without a window? My window is a steel grid, I ‘ave to put my lips against that steel grid and suck in air, that’s my morning… ’cause I got no air in my cell. I have to eat, sleep and crap in that room twenty-three hours of a twenty-four hour day. You tell me, what human being deserves that? Apart from the stinking paedophile or a child killer. I don’t deserve that, I done nothing on this planet to deserve that.” – Charles Bronson

FAVE MOMENT: Bronson, completely naked, getting the police officer to rub stuff on him as he awaits the guards coming in to kick his ass.

AWARDS: None

SYNOPSIS

In 1974, a hot-headed 19 year old named Michael Peterson decided he wanted to make a name for himself and so, with a homemade sawn-off shotgun and a head full of dreams he attempted to rob a post office. Swiftly apprehended and originally sentenced to 7 years in jail, Peterson has subsequently been behind bars for 34 years, 30 of which have been spent in solitary confinement. During that time, Michael Petersen, the boy, faded away and ‘Charles Bronson,’ his superstar alter ego, took center stage. Inside the mind of Bronson – a scathing indictment of celebrity culture.

VERDICT

At number 499 is Bronson, a film protraying the life of Michael Peterson aka Charles Bronson. Tom Hardy plays the man in question in a film that is not stuck to one genre, and also crossing between a theatre play and a biopic as a Clockwork Orange for the new generation.

As Bronson is sent to serve time in jail for robbing a Post Office, he finally comes into his own and takes on his new calling in life…violence. As we go through the life and times of Bronson (sometimes telling the story on his own on a stage to a crowd) from being in a mad house (which produces one uncomfortable scene), to bare knuckle fighting underground to spending the majority of his life in prison without killing a single person.

The film itself would have failed massively, in my opinion, if it weren’t for Tom Hardy in the lead role who transforms into Bronson and beefed up quite a bit for the role. The film may be too ‘arthousey’ for some given Refn’s style of filmmaking but it is for me a good (but not amazing) film, it’s an interesting take on Michael Peterson and why he ended up as one of the most notorious prisoners in England. Soundtrack is also killer.

#500 – Kung Pow: Enter The Fist

•October 21, 2011 • Leave a Comment

RELEASED: 2002

DIRECTED BY: Steve Oedekerk

STARRING: Steve Oedekerk

FAVE QUOTE:Killing is wrong. And bad. There should be a new, stronger word for killing. Like badwrong, or badong. Yes, killing is badong.” – Chosen One

FAVE MOMENT: It’s a toss between the part in the opening scene with the baby rolling down the hill or anytime Ling screams WEE-OOH (laugh everytime. Without fail)

AWARDS: None

SYNOPSIS

Kung Pow: Enter the Fist is a movie within a movie, created to spoof the martial arts genre. Writer/director Steve Oedekerk uses contemporary characters and splices them into a 1970s kung-fu film, weaving the new and old together. As the main character, The Chosen One, Oedekerk sets off to avenge the deaths of his parents at the hands of kung-fu legend Master Pain. Along the way, he encounters some strange characters, one of which is a cow trained in the martial arts.

VERDICT

we will begin the countdown of the top 500 and the first film that has been chosen is Kung Pow: Enter The Fist. This is a comedy that came out of nowhere with a cult following. It’s definitely badong but in a good way as Oedekerk creates a film within a film and creating some quality comedy gems along the way (mainly Master Pain aka Betty as the big bad villain of the piece).  There are some moments of comedy that range from strange (Gopher Chucks!) to the damn right ridiculous (Chosen One VS The Cow fight scene).

When released it was critically slated, I mean one review claimed ‘If you’ve gone to Kung Pow for the plot, you have made a mistake. Come to think of it, if you have gone for the comedy, you’ve also made a mistake. In fact, if you’ve gone at all, you’ve made a mistake’ and my personal fave review of the film was ‘Like a slug that crawls across the screen for eighty minutes before dying of its own nausea.’ Personally I like stupid comedies, in particular ones i’m not expecting to be funny and if you listen to critic reviews then well it’s your loss as some of them can be snobbish at best about particular films but everyone has their different tastes.

Kung Pow never takes itselfs slightly seriously and some of the fight scene set pieces are hilarious with the dubbed dialogue added onto it. Thinking back on it, the premise was a great idea, using around 80% of footage from an old film and just dub over it whilst adding new material. The sequel has been rumoured for some time but just thinking now has the time passed now and the appeal gone? You let me know.