What Is In The Name World War Z

That’s right, a river of fucking piranha-raptor-goose-monsters, ready to murder some Brad Pitt face.

There’s a lot of power in a word. For instance: I can bang a chick for months, years, as long as the broad wants. But, the second she wants to be my girlfriend, my giant dick gets softer than day old mozzarella. The term girlfriend changes everything. You throw that in and suddenly I’m sitting in the changing room at Macy’s, holding a designer purse, while my “girlfriend” is trying on the same dress for the millionth time. Fuck. That. Shit. One word can change everything. And, in World War Z, that word is zombie.

World War Z is about a zombie outbreak. But it isn’t. Not even close. These things share nothing in common with zombies. They bite like piranhas, swarm like geese, and make noises like raptors. They’re basically invulnerable, they even point out that head shots don’t always work, and can also magically turn into a river of bodies and destroy an entire city in seconds. There’s not much more of a plot beyond Greasy Haired Tyler Durden trying to stop them.

Now, admittedly, World War Z isn’t a bad summer film. It’s pretty fucking fun, honestly. There are some tense set pieces, clear action scenes, and a straightforward plot. It turned out remarkably coherent for all the behind the scenes drama that plagued this film.

But, not to get all nerdy and technical, this isn’t a zombie movie. The entire point of a zombie is that they’re weak alone but dangerous in numbers. These Piranha-Raptor-Goose-Monsters are nearly God like in their power. They seem to communicate telepathically. They can turn into rivers that scale walls. They even show one surviving being burned to an ashy char.

And, for as entertaining as this film is, the fact that they’re not fighting zombies changes everything. For instance, if your zombies can turn into a fucking river, and murder everything in front of it, humans don’t stand a chance. In fact, humanity would be wiped out within a few hours if that was the case. Cause you can’t fight a God damn river, even if it’s a river of dead human bodies.

Thus the Piranha-raptor-goose-monsters terrorize everyone in a way that takes away the entire conceit of a zombie flick, which is, break down humanity and dissect it under a microscope. Because that’s what any zombie movie worth it’s salt is about. It’s not about scares. It’s not about gore, though that’s always welcome. It’s about showing what humans are capable of at their worst and greatest. World War Z misses that boat by a mile. Everyone is too worried about fighting off Piranha-raptor-goose-monsters to actually ponder deep and meaningful questions.

So I guess the success and failure of this film lies with you. Do you like pointless action pieces? Or do you like your film with a little subtext? If you like subtext, WWZ probably isn’t for you. If you like Brad Pitt’s greasy hair, flowing in the wind while attacking invulnerable piranha-raptor-goose-monsters, well then World War Z is probably for you.

Grade: B-

The John Hughes in Monsters University

They’re the cool jocks that act like jerks. You know how I know? The jackets, bro. It’s all about the jackets.

Like any self-respecting film nerd from Generation Y, I grew up on 80’s flicks. I’ve seen Sixteen Candles so many times I can recite it almost exclusively from memory. I loved Pretty In Pink so much that, to this day, my dick gets hard if I see a redheaded chick. And let’s not forget the man who taught me how to be the biggest pimp in the universe: Ferris Bueller.

These films had one dude in common, a guiding Yoda who oversaw some wonderfully impressionable films: John Hughes. I’m not gonna list all the ways this dude ruled, or how he changed Hollywood comedies for the better. Instead, I’ll just tell you to go watch Monsters University because it’s possibly the greatest homage to Hughes ever created.

So Monsters live in an alternate dimension and take jobs scaring children to pay the bills. But you knew that from Monsters Inc. What you didn’t know is that these furry assholes had to go to college to get a job scaring. The little One Eyed Monster from the first film really wants to scare people, but the Big Furry Kitty Monster from the first film doesn’t think One Eye is up for it. So a bunch of 80’s shenanigans ensue as they learn, laugh, and slowly develop a gay-bones relationship with each other.

There’s a lot to love here. The pace is snappy. The jokes are plentiful. And the images are possibly the prettiest Pixar has ever done. The whole experience is a light breezy comedy that harkens back to some of the greatest, cheesiest Hughes films of the 80’s. It’s got the bizarre zaniness of Weird Science. Plus some of the class/social issues of Pretty In Pink. And the buddy relationship from Planes, Trains, And Automobiles. MU, like all good 80’s films, follows its own set logic, where you can get into a specific major through a series of games, where Deans actually walk around campus and intimidate students, where good guys are socially awkward nerds and bad guys are popular jocks, and you know which one is which because they signify it with glasses and Letterman jackets.

In that respect, it’s easy to dismiss Monsters University. It is a very simple, straight forward comedy. And that’s probably why so many critics are beating it up. At this point, Pixar should be beyond something so basic. But, to say that MU is solely a kiddy comedy vastly undersells it’s charms.

There’s a deep core to this flick that underscores just how adept Pixar has become at telling a story. First, with the exception of a couple of monsters, everyone in MU is a complex, relatable character. Like characters in a John Hughes film, Pixar takes a base characteristic and expands upon it until truly memorable character emerge.

Then, just when you think you’re having happy-fun-times, Pixar drops a pretty radical moral on the audience. One that I’ve never seen a film have the balls to tell children. It’s a lot heavier than “follow your dreams” or “be yourself.” ‘

So, to all the haters thinking that Pixar has lost their touch, I beg to differ. They just made one hell of an 80’s film. And, sure, on the surface 80’s films can seem fairly shallow. But, like John Hughes before them, Pixar found a memorable way to present tired tropes.

Grade: B+

Man Of Steel And Style Over Substance

MICHAEL SHANNON IS VERY ANGRY HE WAS WASTED ON A SHITTY MOVIE!!!!!

Look, I’m no dummy, chicks don’t bang me for my brains. They like to ball because, frankly, I’m hung like a horse and have abs that can clean their dirty laundry. Ya hear me, washer board city. And, after a couple fuck-fests, they catch on that there’s not exactly anything deep going on in my brain. So they get bored and leave. Freeing me up to screw the next chick in line. I am, for all intents and purposes, style over substance. A pretty package in a hollow shell. So is the new Superman flick, Man of Steel.

Man Of Steel is the millionth origin story of Superman. Krypton explodes for the millionth time. Lois Lane gets in trouble for the millionth time. And Ma and Pa Kent find a little naked baby alien for the millionth time. So, already, yawn city. It’s a pointless retread. But then this Evil Dude from Krypton shows up and decides to blow up the entire earth, cause that’s just how evil dudes roll. The final section of the film is one giant fight that serves no narrative purpose. The End.

First, the good shit, I’ll give some props to this film for actually trying. You can tell Zach Snyder spent some time on this baby. A lot of thought went into making Superman as interesting as an invincible God can actually be. Plus, the general idea of an alien crash landing on earth is treated with the logical dramatic heft it deserves.

Now, here’s comes the shitty part, even when Snyder tries, the results are still pretty stupid. Snyder’s a fairly attractive dude, no homo. And he makes million dollar movies. I suspect he was even in some sporting group in high school, probably moved onto some frat in college. He’s, as far as I can tell, a douche bag like me. That means he doesn’t give a shit about “feelings” or “character arcs” or even “plot.” Nope. He just wants to see buildings explode.

This doesn’t work when you want me to care about Superman, who is, by nature, hard to care about. He’s either too strong and decent to be interesting. Or he’s too conflicted about being perfect to really rally behind.

So, instead of taking the time, fighting the hard fight of fleshing Clark Kent out, Snyder just decides to create a three hour video game. And, believe me, if there are no stakes, if the only thing that’s important is aesthetics, the movie is going to be a rough fucking ride. And Man Of Steel is a rough fucking ride.

Yes, shit explodes. Yes, there are aliens and spaceships. There’s even an emergency eye-laser surgery scene. But it’s all hollow. It means nothing. It’s pretty to look at, Snyder has always been good with cinematography. But I think he needs to chill, sit down, and maybe think about creating a film with actually emotional resonance. Otherwise he’s gonna end up like me: alone, hung over, and nursing a massive case of morning wood.

Grade: C

This Is The End Commits

Aw yeah, looks like a good old end of the world three way is about to break out.

Pssst, lean in closer, Fuckface, your old pal DudeBro is gonna drop some knowledge all over your face like a spooge-canon of enlightenment: the secret to comedy is commitment. That’s it. You see, most people, average unfunny people, tend to drop a joke if it doesn’t make someone laugh. The only difference between that person, and a truly hilarious human being, is a funny person will keep at a joke until it finally finds a way to get a laugh. This Is The End is possibly the funniest film I’ve seen in years. And it’s funny because everyone involved is committed to the seriousness of the apocalypse.

This Is The End stars a shit of funny celebrities playing variations of themselves during the end of the world. God gets pissed and murders tons of people in the first five minutes. Then six dudes have to survive in a mansion. Then shit gets crazy. And I don’t want to ruin anything but This Is The End turns into one of the ballsiest and strangest American comedies of the year.

There’s a lot to be worried about in a film like this. First off, it’s actors playing themselves. That kind of joke can get old quick. But this film sidesteps that bullshit by making them characters instead of caricatures. Second, once the world goes to hell, there are very few self-referential jokes. The jokes are mostly focused on the difficultly of surviving a horror movie. It, in almost every scene, takes that survival to a twisted extreme.

For real, I’m shocked a film like this could get made. There are really bizarre things happening. Christian things that’ll offend soccer moms and religious nuts. Heavy homosexual undertones that might offend jock-douchers who normally love Rogan films. And don’t forget heavy gore, which might turn off chicks with weak stomachs. Almost every aspect of this film is meant to alienate a large audience. Yet, somehow it got made, and somehow the creators stuck to their guns and created a truly memorable and distinct comedy.

Cause, a lesser director, would have wussed out on the whole apocalypse thing. Even great apocalypse comedies, like Shawn Of The End, pull back toward the ends so everyone can have a happy ending. Not this film. Nope. This film sees an apocalypse follows it to a logical dark conclusion. The result is as disturbing as it is hilarious. For example, they actually manage to mine rape humor out of a long discussion about one of the few remaining females, Hermione Granger.

So, I’ll say it again, I’m shocked, in an age of studio oversight, something this raw and edgy could get made. It commits, without a shadow of a doubt, to the horrors of the end of the world. And, if you’re not an easily offended asshole, the results will make your sides hurt.

Grade: A-

Shot Gunning Some Generic Summer Movies

Epic

Prettiness. There’s a lot of it here. Even if it’s light on plot.

Fern Gully but prettier. Sure, there’s no Christian Slater or a giant toxic monster, hell the movie doesn’t even really have a moral, but it’s light and breezy. If ya popped out a kid, sure, go see it. It’ll shut the little fuckers up until Monster’s University comes out.

Grade: B

 

The Hangover 3

I know. I’m sad this dude is the lead too.

 

Do you like that fat Alan dude, you know, the crazy one from the old Hangover films that acted like a dick and said crazy things? Well guess what?!?! Alan is in almost every fucking second of this sequel!!! Depending on how you feel about him as a character, this news is either a promise or a threat. Me, personally, find him deeply annoying. So, fuck this shit.

Grade: C-

After Earth

YAAAWWWWNNNNNNN!!!!!!!!!!

I hate M. Night. The dude made one good film, which was Unbreakable for the record, and everyone flips out and says he’s the next great filmmaker. He’s not. But, as much as I despise The Village, The Happening, and Lady in the Water, they weren’t generic. They had their own little twisted vibe to them. I can respect that.

I can’t respect a film that goes out of it’s way to be so vaguely generic.

Grade: F

 

Now You See Me

Chicks, man!!!!!!

Magicians rob a bank!!!! Yes, it’s stupid!!!! No, it’s not going to be your favorite summer movie!!!! But the cast kinda rocks and it’s snappy enough to be entertaining. Plus, fuck it, there are impossibly few original films during summer.

Grade: B-