Friday, November 27, 2009


What’s it about?
Korean pop sensation Rain is Raizo*, former member of a super secret ninja clan that is now trying to kill him because he accidentally showed weakness for like a second, except he's also trying to kill them because he's... NINJA ASSASSIN!!!

Any chicks in the movie?
Naomie Harris from 28 Days Later plays a Europol agent who believes ninjas are, like, totally real. No skin, because I guess between all of that shuriken sharpening and training montages ninjas don't have time for the nasty.

Awesomeness Factor?
Deadly high. Director James McTeigue, who previously made a miss-the-point adaptation of V For Vendetta, makes the smart decision to shoot NINJA ASSASSIN** like a horror movie, with the role of the monster replaced by an army of semi-supernatural ninjutsu who don't tend to stealth kill their enemies so much as eviscerate them from the shadows like a Ginsu knife demonstration gone horribly, horribly wrong. We are talking about a philosophically profound level of violence here - if you have a problem with the sight of flesh getting cut, sliced, diced, puréed, whipped, chained, beaten, shot, stabbed, gouged, and then cut some more just in case, then you have made a very poor movie-watching decision. NINJA ASSASSIN is to the cutting of human flesh as the Twilight series is to making 12-year old boys suddenly realize they're gay, by which I mean it happens about once every twelve seconds of the movie's runtime. The structure*** and the plot**** of the movie is laughable, and the acting from Korean pop sensation Rain is negligible.***** But quite frankly, anybody who goes to see this for anything other than watching ninjas fight the shit out of each other must clearly represent an epic marketing fail. Where it counts, NINJA ASSASSIN delivers the kind of ridiculously violent sword-fighting, shuriken-flinging, limb-lopping good time that I haven't seen since the heyday of NINJA III: THE DOMINATION. Just maybe pass on the popcorn for this one.

Mitigated by?
I forgot to mention the presence of Sho Kosugi, aka Bad-Ass Ninja Man Who Was In Every Ninja Movie Ever, as the leader of the evil ninja clan. Remember how he fights Rutger Hauer at the end of Blind Fury? Oh, Blind Fury. Where's your collector's edition DVD?

* Which is Japanese for "Korean pop sensation Rain".

** The title is too awesome to not type in all-caps every time.

*** Which is basically exposition, then ninja attack, then FLASHBACK! repeated ad infinitum.

**** OK, seriously: these ninjas show up and literally slaughter whole buildings full of people, lopping off their limbs and skulls like a knife going through really bloody butter and leaving every available wood surface impaled with throwing stars, and you're telling me Europol CSI can't do shit with that? Ninjas showed up in Vegas and William Peterson would have had those dudes on ice in like half an episode. Also, just a quick pointer for the next secret ninja clan that builds their secret hidden base on the secret side of a secret mountain: might want to block the only fucking road up there so that the ATVs full of soldiers can't just drive up.

***** Lucky for him the movie basically only really asks him to look brooding in the rain, which I gotta admit he's pretty good at. Maybe he can star in the Twilight spin-off about ninjas that twinkle.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

New to the Store: Week of 24 November


Amateur Porn Star Killer
Angels and Demons
Band, The
Christmas Tale, A (Criterion)
Four Christmases
Funny People
I Sell the Dead
Kobe: Doin' Work
Life on Mars (UK): Series 2
Lion's Den
Maiden Heist, The
Pray the Devil Back to Hell
Watch Out

New Arrivals

Black Widow (1954)
Cheerleaders Wild Weekend
Hamlet (Kozintsev)
King Lear (Kozintsev)
Law of Desire
Show Me Yours: Complete Series


Angels and Demons
Christmas Tale, A

Friday, November 20, 2009


It's the time of year that Gen X customers dream about... feverish, sweaty, strangely erotic dreams. It's time for the Gen X Anniversary Celebration!

It's almost the store's 15th birthday and we have some special bargoons lined up, with the always-anticipated Connoisseur Card sale first and foremost. Check it out, yo:

* 12-pack Connoisseur Cards are now only $36.00 (that's $3.00 per rental, as if it's half-price Monday all year long, or for as long as your cards last!). You can buy as many of the cards as you please, and they NEVER expire.

* All Used DVDs are buy 1, get 1 free.

* Come in Thursday, December 3rd, when all rentals are only $1.00!

* Every time you rent during the Anniversary Celebration, you are automatically entered to win a Blu-Ray player (a good one, too)!


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

New to the Store: Week of 17 November


Act of God
Cho, Margaret: Beautiful
Gomorrah (Criterion)
How to Be
Is Anybody There?
Limits of Control, The
My Effortless Brilliance
My One and Only
My Sister's Keeper
Spongebob Squarepants: Truth or Square
Star Trek (2009)
Tudors, The: Season 3


Avant-Garde 3
Born Yesterday
Doctor Who: Enlightenment
Doctor Who: Mawdryn Undead
Doctor Who: Terminus
Downhill Racer
North Dallas Forty
Rainmaker, The
Russ Meyer's Abundant Beginnings (The Immoral Mr. Teas / Europe in the Raw / Eve and the Handyman / Wild Gals of the Naked West)
Save the Tiger
Star Trek: First Contact
Stargate SG1: Season 10
Tales from the Darkside: The Movie


Monsters, Inc.
Star Trek (2009)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Paint Yer Wagon!

So, I never thought I'd say this, but Clint Eastwood is quite a good singer. I must say I enjoyed Paint Your Wagon, a musical from 1969 that not only incorporates a male chorus, but also a three-way marriage, bawds and Eastwood singing a romantic ballad. Lee Marvin is boisterous and fun, and Jean Seberg is just as beautiful as she was 10 years earlier in Breathless.

This may or may not be the beginning of a series of short reviews done by yours truly, but if it is, then I hope you enjoy them :)

New to the Store: Week of 10 November


Accidental Husband, The
Answer Man, The
Big Bang Theory: Season 2
Ferrell, Will: You're Welcome, America - A Final Night with George W. Bush
Goods, The: Live Hard, Sell Hard
In the Loop
Paraiso Travel
Spectacle: Elvis Costello with…: Season 1
Ugly Truth, The
Up (also BluRay)


Columbia Film Noir Classics I (The Big Heat / 5 Against the House / The Lineup / Murder by Contract / The Sniper)
Family Scandal
Five Card Stud
Fuller, Samuel: Collection (It Happened in Hollywood / Adventure in Sahara / Power of the Press / Shockproof / Scandal Sheet / The Crimson Kimono / Underworld U.S.A.)
J.S.A. Joint Security Area
Last Train from Gun Hill
Merry Sitcom! Christmas Classics from TV's Golden Age (That Girl / Bewitched / Father Knows Best / McHale's Navy / The Flying Nun / The Donna Reed Show)
On the Buses
Star Wars: Clone Wars: Season 1
Touch of Frost: Season 6
Upright Citizens Brigade: Asssscat!
What About Bob?
Young Billy Young

Friday, November 6, 2009

Dude Movies: Crank 2: High Voltage

What's it about?
In the best sequel idea since Chow Yun Fat played his own previously unmentioned twin brother in A Better Tomorrow II, Jason "Chev Chelios" Statham wakes up on an operating table (after having survived a fall that would have liquefied any non-Statham) to find his heart being replaced with a big-ass battery.* Hey, we've all been there, right?

Any chicks in the movie?
Amy Smart returns as his girlfriend, and the deeply unpleasant Bai Ling shows up as the World's Most Irritating Prostitute. How Bai Ling gets work in movies is beyond me. She's got a body that looks like somebody stapled her head on top of a rubber novelty chicken.

Awesomeness Factor?
Stratospheric. Crank 2 is like the Platonic ideal of an action movie, profoundly unconcerned with the pedestrian narrative concerns that plague other sadder, lesser movies that don't have the balls to be Crank 2**. It's a movie that is more than willing - eager, you might say - to cut away from a scene to show you a ferret's ball-sack or the massive man-shaft of a thoroughbred racehorse for no real reason. It's a movie that gets real-life Bible-thumpin' moron Corey "I'm Still Alive?" Haim to not only play a mulleted loser pimp but then has Amy Smart beat the ever-living shit out of him for laughs. Technically, it has the elements of what would constitute a normal motion picture, like a plot and characters, but then tosses them away so that Chev Chelios can jack himself with a power grid transformer or shoot up a strip club full of people who had the extreme misfortune of not being Jason Statham. Meanwhile the insane perverts behind the camera throw enough avant-garde film treatments and camera trickery at you to fuel a thousand student film festivals, unable to focus their attention on anything for longer than a few seconds without trying to either blow it up, fuck it, or both. If DVD rental places had any balls at all, they would replace all the Criterion Collection discs with burned copies of Crank 2 instead and, when you opened the case, Statham's fist would jump through time and space and punch you in the face.

Mitigated by?
The only mitigating factor is that maybe Crank 2 didn't make enough money for there to be a Crank 3, but I refuse to live in a universe where there is no Crank 3. My guess for the next one: He's just, like, on fire all the time. TRADEMARKED!

* In this incredible ability to resurrect himself Statham is like Jesus, if Jesus wasn't such a fucking pussy.

** Like, I don't know, Schindler's List. That movie would have been like twenty seconds long if Statham was Liam Neeson.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

New to the Store: Week of 3 November


Bela Fleck: Throw Down Your Heart
Botany of Desire, The
Cambridge Spies
Carnal Utopia
Divo, Il
Don't You Forget About Me
English Surgeon, The
Food, Inc.
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra
Great Match, The
I Love You, Beth Cooper
Make the Yuletide Gay
Marc Pease Experience, The
Night of the Creeps
Not Forgotten
Taking of Pelham 123, The (2009)
This Boy's Life
Tournament, The
Wings of Desire (Criterion)
Woman in Berlin, A
Xavier, Renegade Angel: Seasons 1 & 2


Dead Snow
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra
Howards End
Taking of Pelham 123, The (2009)
Wings of Desire