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SURROGATES (2009) *** movie review by COOP

SURROGATES (2009) *** movie review by COOP

Posted on September 30th, 2009

I like science fiction films that make me think, but sometimes a concept really gets my gears moving. Films with robots tend to catch my fancy. I even taught an English unit to high school students involving classic short stories about robots and how they could have a positive or negative effect on society. 95% of the time, the stories lean toward the negative. “Surrogates,” based off of a graphic novel, is no exception. While engaging and moderately exciting, it raises more questions that it answers…

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Oh, DETHKLOK.  You’ve done it again!  Review of DETHALBUM II by DARK SIDE

Oh, DETHKLOK. You’ve done it again! Review of DETHALBUM II by DARK SIDE

Posted on September 29th, 2009

Nope, it’s not movie news per se, BUT I’m trying to ease back into the horror scene after a long, pre-Halloween slumber. I’m kicking in the movie scene by reviewing Pandorum in the next day or two, but when a bunch of cartoon characters from “Adult Swim” can singlehandedly resurrect the flagging “death metal” scene, that’s news for the ages. Dethalbum II, by the fictional band Dethklok, hit iTunes last night at midnight and I downloaded it immediately. Why? Because Dethalbum I was so popular and completely owned the genre it satirizes…

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SLEEP DEALER (2009) ****1/2 ain’t snooze-worthy. In fact, It’s great sci-fi! by COOP

SLEEP DEALER (2009) ****1/2 ain’t snooze-worthy. In fact, It’s great sci-fi! by COOP

Posted on September 28th, 2009

Whew, back from a relaxing vacation to bring you an indie film that needs more exposure.

Set in the future where fears of terrorism have made travel across the border between America and Mexico nearly impossible, native Mexicans find a new, high-tech method of illegal immigration. Luis Fernando Pena plays Memo, a young man who reads “Hacking for Beginners” books and tinkers with his own surveillance equipment at his father’s struggling farm in Mexico. The U.S. Government has…

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THE INFORMANT! (2009) *** movie review by COOP

THE INFORMANT! (2009) *** movie review by COOP

Posted on September 25th, 2009

I didn’t laugh until about 40 minutes into this artsy, awkwardly-styled independent film. There, if that didn’t scare you off, then you might enjoy this light and quirky story by Steven Soderbergh. You won’t be rolling in the aisles, but if you can wait for the tension to build, the laughs will come. It’s too bad Soderbergh couldn’t kick the humor off to an early start because a less patient audience would either fall asleep or walk out…

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THE MUD DOG BLUES movie shoot at Ground Zero Blues Club, by COOP

THE MUD DOG BLUES movie shoot at Ground Zero Blues Club, by COOP

Posted on September 18th, 2009

One very welcome side effect to blues music tourism in Clarksdale, Mississippi is that it attracts filmmakers to the area. Locals may have noticed an increasing amount of camera jockeys and boom mics wandering around downtown and the nearby tourist attractions. Get used to it, because if Tuesday night’s filming of “The Mud Dog Blues” feature promo trailer at Ground Zero Blues Club is any indication, Clarksdale may become one of the most filmed cities in the state.

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Viral Marketing for Motion Pictures… What’s the future of this trend? by COOP

Viral Marketing for Motion Pictures… What’s the future of this trend? by COOP

Posted on September 15th, 2009

I dig viral marketing for its innovation and the way it can emmerse you further into a fictional experience. While it reaches only the most tech-savvy of fans, a good campaign can cause an overnight sensation and facilitate unprecedented levels of interest in a film that might have been ignored back in the days before the internet.
Studios have embraced the practice as well. They now dump a portion of their budget into creating viral marketing for their new releases. This works best for the genre flicks that have either a mythology or a mystery to work with. Let’s look at a few of the best and most successful viral campaigns out there and through the process, try to determine which strategies studios and film pioneers will use next…

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CIGARETTE GIRL… Memphis indie movie premiere (2009) by COOP

CIGARETTE GIRL… Memphis indie movie premiere (2009) by COOP

Posted on September 11th, 2009

I met Tupelo native Mike McCarthy at Ground Zero Blues Club in Clarksdale, Mississippi a little over two weeks ago and I found myself surprised to realize I’d heard of the guy. I caught his ultra low-budget film “Superstarlet A.D.”years back which was released by shlockmeister/producer Lloyd Kaufman, famous for his “Troma” brand of low budget exploitation flicks. I wasn’t a fan of the film, but I got a clear grasp for McCarthy’s style and obsessions. McCarthy spends his time in Memphis soaking up the hip Midtown scene and planning feature film projects. He fetishizes pin-up girls, rockabilly music and indie film… precisely all the ingredients that make up his latest opus, “Cigarette Girl.”

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GAMER (2009) **** movie review by COOP… Surprise, Mikey! He liked it!

GAMER (2009) **** movie review by COOP… Surprise, Mikey! He liked it!

Posted on September 10th, 2009

Color me shocked. What looked like a loud, obnoxious, superficial action flick in the previews actually succeeded in making a meaningful (yet disturbing) social statement. Harkening back to the exploitative B-movie action films of the late 80’s and 90’s, “Gamer” begins as a sleazy, violent bloodbath with seemingly no redeeming cinematic value. Just as I started to turn my brain off, the story surprised me with some plot devices and story concepts way ahead of its time…

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I COME IN PEACE: Watch one of COOP’s favorite sci-fi movies of 1990 online!

I COME IN PEACE: Watch one of COOP’s favorite sci-fi movies of 1990 online!

Posted on September 9th, 2009

It’s an oddity of a film. Originally titled Dark Angel(???), this film capitalized on the late 80’s/early 90’s B-movie star power of Dolph Lundgren. Imitating a Shane Black, cop-buddy movie like Lethal Weapon or The Last Boy Scout, the film adds an additional element to the mix… a 9-foot tall alien drug dealer….

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PARANORMAL ACTIVITY and LAKE MUNGO… two ghostly “mockumentaries” that I want to see. by DARK SIDE

PARANORMAL ACTIVITY and LAKE MUNGO… two ghostly “mockumentaries” that I want to see. by DARK SIDE

Posted on September 8th, 2009

Okay, so I’m on an indie horror kick at the moment. Sue me. It’s that time of the year.

These are two that I’m highly anticipating. Not good considering I doubt I (or you) will get to see either anytime soon.

PARANORMAL ACTIVITY: EVIDENCE OF A HAUNTING
Hitting the festival circuit for awhile now (at least since 2007), this Blair Witch-type found-footage film capitalizes on a very simple idea… A couple move into a new place. Weird things start happening so they set up some video cameras to try and solve the mystery. Things get scary. So scary in fact that it’s rumored that audience members…

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PONTYPOOL review… Zombies vs. Don Imus! by DARK SIDE

PONTYPOOL review… Zombies vs. Don Imus! by DARK SIDE

Posted on September 7th, 2009

I’m making this a spoiler-heavy, in-depth review because of the fact that Pontypool could’ve been a great horror movie. In fact, the first half was near flawless.

But I’ll get to that. Boy will I ever. You see, I got a few favorite concepts out there that work great by themselves. Sometimes a smarty pants comes along and merges two of the concepts to create what I call a “super concept.” It’s kinda like when rock stars from different bands get together to form “super bands.” Sometimes it works (Traveling Wilburys), sometimes it doesn’t (Hear ‘n Aid). This concept worked… almost. In what amounts to a mix of Talk Radio, Night of the Living Dead and War of the Worlds, we meet…

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BOONDOCK SAINTS II: ALL SAINTS DAY finally has a trailer! I still can’t believe it actually got made. by COOP

BOONDOCK SAINTS II: ALL SAINTS DAY finally has a trailer! I still can’t believe it actually got made. by COOP

Posted on September 5th, 2009

(NOTE: I’m delaying the next installment of HAIR METAL MOVIE MADNESS #11 for another week. Partially due to this week’s technical difficulties but also so I can save up some of the good horror ones for the month of October. Plus, this news was too juicy and I had to jump on it ASAP…)

My love for Boondock Saints (5 out of 5 stars!) has no bounds. Which is why with a heavy heart I still feel that a sequel should’ve never been made. Why? Because writer/director Troy Duffy didn’t deserve one. For those of you unfamiliar with the story, Saints involve a pair of illegal immigrant Irish twins, the McManus brothers (Sean Patrick Flannery and Norman Reedus) who get in a scrap with some local Russian mobsters in a Boston slum. After killing the mobsters in self defense, the brothers simultaneously get a divine vision instructing them to…

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HALLOWEEN II (2009) * movie review by DARK SIDE

HALLOWEEN II (2009) * movie review by DARK SIDE

Posted on September 4th, 2009

It’s a sad weekend when your best new release choice is another lousy horror remake. I strongly disliked director Rob Zombie’s first “Halloween” remake in execution and in principle. It made a mint, but was so poorly received by critics and fans of the original classic, the indignant Zombie swore to not do a sequel. Two years later he broke that promise with a sequel even poorer than his first. Methinks dollar signs and ego played a part in his decision to beat a dead horse and I sincerely doubt after this stinker, anyone would want to see a third…

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