Posts Tagged ‘Hollywood’

My guest this week is none other than actor Christine Nguyen. She’s been in a ton of movies including mainstream flicks like The Hangover Part II and III, and Get Him to the Greek, as well as cult classics like Attack of the Killer DonutsVigilante Diaries, and Sharkansas Women’s Prison Massacre.

Christine has also starred in a whole bunch of TV shows including Gene Simmons’ Family Jewels, CSI, and Dexter. She’s done so many projects and worked with some pretty incredible people so trust me when I tell you that there’s some top notch stories to be heard on this episode.

Christine is an absolute sweetheart and I am so happy she found the time in her hectic schedule to sit down and have this chat. Armed with a positive mental attitude and an infectious personality, this episode is a real hootenanny of fun times and great conversation about rad music and movies. Definitely one of my favourite guests to have on the show.

You can listen right now by clicking on THIS LINK.

You can find Christine’s IMDB page HERE.

You can buy The Christine Nguyen Collection DVD through Amazon right HERE.

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Honestly, how could you go wrong with a made-for-TV movie titled Sharknado that stars Beverly Hills 90210 hack Ian Ziering and Josie and the Pussycats own Tara Reid? Add some terrible acting, awful one liners and a great storyline about tornadoes and sharks attacking the California coast line and you’re sure to have some ridiculously good times.

Fin Shepard (Ziering) owns a bar by the beach. Suddenly there’s a shark attack on the beach and all hell breaks loose when a shark comes flying through the window of the bar due to an insane storm that is ravaging California. Along with his sultry bikini clad bar tender, Nova Clarke (Cassie Scerbo), and his Aussie mate Baz (Jaason Simmons) they head inland to save Fin’s family played by Tara Reid and two other randoms playing his kids. The streets are flooded and there are sharks everywhere. It’s kinda ridiculous and you have to suspend disbelief but who cares, you’re watching a movie called Sharknado so you expect awesomeness.

They aim to get to higher ground and they go to a flying school, build bombs and take on the sharknados (there’s now 3 of them). They came up with some ingenious plan to drop bombs into the tornadoes and they will blow them up as apparently science says that you can blow up tornadoes and they stop being tornadoes. Or something.

I won’t spoil it for you but let me just say that this movie was a good time. It’s a nice pisstake on the disaster film genre of which there are many. It’s good humour with some classic moments thrown in. The effects aren’t bad and in blu ray, this movie looks sweet as! There’s tons of action, some nice bloody shark killings and a lot of moments that will make you laugh at the films shameless parody of all that is wrong with Hollywood. I had fun watching Sharknado and I really am looking forward to seeing Sharknado 2. How bad could it be?

The Blu Ray looks stunning and the extras include commentary with the cast and crew, a gag reel, and a making of Sharknado featurette.

I give Sharknado a whopping 4 Cassie Scerbo’s out of 5.

I sat down to watch this last night as there has been quite a bit of hype about it. Besides, it’s a new Scarlett Johansson film so why not? I sat down and put all distractions aside as I really enjoy my movie time and this was going to be awesome, right?

Lucy starts off in Taipei with Lucy (played by Scarlett) meeting some guy she just started dating (don’t worry, no one can remember his name but he wears a cowboy hat) outside of some big business type hotel thing. Cowboy Hat tells Lucy to go inside the building and drop a briefcase off to this guy who unbeknownst to her, he’s a big drug lord mob boss. Lucy has no idea what’s in the case but Cowboy Hat handcuffs her to the case and sends her in there cos he’s a dickless wuss who is too scared to go in there himself. She does the deed for Cowboy Hat even though she’s nervous as hell and on the edge of PTSD. Suddenly the Mob Boss and his hired goons appear and shit goes crazy. Lucy is taken away to some posh suite (probably on the top floor, they always are) and she is interrogated. We find out that the briefcase (Surprise! Surprise!) has a new drug in it named MP3 or MP4 or CBGBs or some shit like that. To me it looks just like blue magic sand (remember that stuff? I never had any of that but the advert always made it look cool. Yay!) and after Lucy is knocked out she wakens to find out that the goons have sliced her tummy open and are using her bodacious body to transport drugs overseas. She wasn’t the only one though, they did the same thing to three other deadbeats and each person is sent to a different country. See, now this all sounds like a great story so I was hooked in and glued to the TV. I was thinking, “this is like some kinda Taken Liam Neeson styled shit! Fuck yeah!” and so with my pizza (donated by my generous housemates cos I’m broke. You guys rock! Thanks!), I was all set to go for some ass-kickin’ action.

Lucy and the other deadbeats are all given a passport and have black hoods placed over their heads and are taken away. They take Lucy to some crazy room when she is locked up in chains and then she is beaten for rejecting the advances made by some sleazeball. Unfortunately for him, he kicks her in the stomach which is where the drugs were implanted. Now the bag carrying the drugs is leaking and Lucy becomes some Terminator styled killer who takes on all these crazy sci fi powers to do with unlocking parts of the brain that we as humans can’t get to. She goes on a killing spree and starts knocking off the dudes who get in her way and heads back to the building where the mob boss was and kills everyone in her path. I was thinking “if the movie keeps up like this, we’re in for a wild ride!” She confronts the mob boss, shoves some knives through his hands and gets the knowledge of where the other victims were sent carrying the drugs. In true Hollywood hindsight, why she didn’t just finish off the mob boss at this moment baffles me. Anyway, she is determined to have them all busted and the drugs returned to her cos she needs them in order to survive for a little bit longer cos she’s gonna die anyway cos her brain is all screwed up, or something like that.

So the film delivers its fair share of action and Morgan Freeman took time out from doing documentary voice-overs to appear in this film as a professor who understands the way the brain works and especially those parts of the brain we can’t get to. What a coincidence! Lucy tracks him down and confronts him all the while the crazy mob boss and his cronies are on her tail to get their merchandise back. She befriends a cop in Paris who can’t believe the things he sees cos her super powers are too much for him to handle and together they take on the gang and a bloodbath (Hollywood style) ensues. Shit gets crazy and you’re ready to kick out the jams but then the dreaded CGI overtakes everything and the film gets stupid.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am a sci-fi nerd and a movie geek who loves unique, bizarre and interesting ideas and stuff but I just can’t stand CGI taking over what was a great storyline that I was really invested in and turning it into complete silliness. Sure, it’s a film and we are expected to suspend disbelief but this was too much. The film really did start out with a cool idea and it could have been something extraordinary. I think if the movie was written and directed by someone like John Woo, it would have come off a lot more crazy and over the top violent which would have made it a lot more entertaining. Like seeing Lucy walk around carrying two guns and shooting up bad guys reminded me of Woo’s The Killer for a brief moment. That had me hooked but the CGI had me yawning.

Anyway, a bunch of people die and Lucy does some crazy stuff and turns into a computer and the film ends.

I won’t say that the movie is avoidable cos I enjoyed most of it. Johansson’s character is a strong lead and more proof that females can be awesome and enjoyable action film lead actors. Wake up, Hollywood! There really needs to be more of it from the mainstream film companies. Sure, Tura Satana she ain’t but she still kicks ass nonetheless and it’s a shame the story goes stupid and lets her down.

I give the movie six hold your pistols on it’s side cos apparently it shoots better that way out of ten.

I still can’t believe she turns into a computer.

In just under 2 weeks I will be seeing the new Metallica film, Through The Never, at the IMAX theatre here in Melbourne. Ever since the film’s unveiling at the San Diego Comic Con this year, to say I have been anticipating this is a bit of an understatement. I just got back from the USA and when I was on the flight home, before I took my Xanax tablet to pass out and sleep the whole way, I quickly checked the film guide to see if it was showing on one of the plane’s gazillion movie channels. It wasn’t. Still though, seeing this movie at the IMAX theatre in 3D is kind of a big deal for me because not only is it in 3D so I am sure to have a killer headache before the movie is over but I very rarely go see movies in the cinema anymore and this is for a number of reasons;

1) I really don’t like people who have no cinema etiquette and therefore make my viewing of movies at the cinema a complete waste of money and time. Yes Mr “I have seen this movie already, even those I am seeing on opening night, and therefore I will tell you what happens before the scene even eventuates”, I am talking to you. You are the worst. Please stay home.
2) I don’t really care for most movies made these days and so therefore will wait for the DVD / BLU-RAY release to watch it in the privacy of my own home because of people in reason 1.
3) Cinema food pricing is completely ludicrous and more unrealistic than the pricing of a croissant at the airport.
and
4) I really get annoyed by walk-in-late guy – you know, the one who walks in 5 minutes after the movie starts and then always sits right in front of you and then opens up his Malteasers or packet of crisps and makes a shitload of noise thus making me miss an integral part of what is being said. Annoying!

Sure, I will take some of the blame because I should just not go there and therefore I wouldn’t deal with such things but every now and then it’s nice to get out of the house and actually do something entertaining like seeing a movie. The last film I saw in the cinema was in the USA a week and a half ago. It was a movie about a mafia family starring Robert De Niro. It was one of those cheap Tuesday nights in California and I went along with 3 friends. Hey, who am I to turn down good times and no hassles? It was either go see a movie or stay at the house alone and look at all the stuff I bought that wasn’t going to fit in my suitcase… again. I opted for the movie. The cinema was pretty empty and the film was kinda lame, even for a De Niro movie. It had its humorous moments but it’s not a film I will be re-watching in a hurry. In fact, if I saw this at someone’s house in their DVD collections I’d probably question them on why they feel the need to see this movie more than once. It’s not like it was Taxi Driver or the Blues Brothers, this was some film called The Family. Don’t waste your time unless you want to see Dianna Agron kill some dude with a tennis racket.

ANYWAY, Through The Never looks bitchin’! The fact that Metallica has made, or should I say, is part of an action movie is something that sounds better on paper than it probably will be but for the sake of this article, I am going to be optimistic. Well, to be honest, I am actually pretty damn excited by it. I have this love / hate relationship with Metallica. For one thing, every tour they do, I’m there. Every book on them, I’m buying it. Every DVD / BLU-RAY, yep, I snap them up too. Why? Cos I’m insane. Probably. No, but because I still enjoy Metallica. Sure, I haven’t bought an album since And Justice For All (I don’t really count the Garage Days double release cos that’s not technically an official album), but that doesn’t hold me back from seeing the Californian quartet in concert and deliving into their lives through books and documentaries. It’s a habit, I guess. I first saw Metallica in Adelaide at the Thebarton Theatre in 1989 on their And Justice For All tour and I guess I’ve been hooked ever since. Now almost 25 years later, the thought of Metallica starring in their own movie seemed ridiculous back then but seems completely logical now. I mean, where do you go after writing disappointing albums with Lou Reed? Exactly… straight to Hollywood! And what better way to bring in the audiences around the world than with a bitchin’ soundtrack and a shitload of explosions and guns n stuff? Damn straight!

This isn’t the first time that metal has hit the cinemas here in Melbourne. Back when Iron Maiden’s Flight 666 was shown in the cinema here, I was over the moon and not just because my ugly face is in it but because a doco on Iron Maiden was being shown in a cinema setting and I was surrounded by a bunch of Melbourne metal heads and great friends. That combination always makes for good times. Even Poodle was there, surprisingly (or not surprisingly), with two bourbons. Yes, even the most hardcore of Melbourne’s music scene will find a way to get bourbons into a cinema. Good job! Sam Dunn’s documentary on one of metal’s greatest bands gave all fans of Maiden a taste of what it’s like to fly your own plane around the world, play some shows along with a few rounds of golf and tennis, all the while keeping your hands out of your pockets because, according to the old man working for Maiden who confronted a friend’s brother on the matter, it’s just unacceptable.

But I digress, Through The Never may sound and look cheesy but I am actually pretty damn anxious for its release. What we have here is a band who sadly ran out of fresh ideas finally come up with a fresh idea! I probably haven’t been this excited since that day I saw the VHS of Rock N Roll Highschool starring the Ramones on the shelves of Civic Video in Salisbury for $2 a week. I was thankful then just as I am thankful now.

Metallica are no stranger to movies though. Who could forget their reveal all documentary Some Kind Of Monster; a gripping documentary that follows the band recording one of the worst albums of their career while going through therapy in the midst of an emotional breakdown. The film is filled with classic moments in cinematic history as the band fight with each other pretty much the whole way through whilst the director intersperses scenes of Lars Ulrich talking about the black on some shitty paintings he owned and then re-sold for millions, James Hetfield driving around and talking hot rods, Megadeth’s Dave Mustaine crying because he isn’t making as many millions as his former band (how distressing), Rob Trujillo being welcomed to the band with a one million dollar token of the band’s gratitude, and the highlight of the movie; the band’s therapist, while wearing a Cosby sweater, offers to write the band’s lyrics. It’s a touching movie that I recommend everyone see. Not only does the film show how embarrassing it must be at times to be in Metallica knowing that you haven’t done a great album in years, but it even goes to show that you can sue your fans for illegally downloading your albums and then still continue on to be one of the biggest, if not THE biggest band in metal today. It’s kinda ridiculous when you think about it. I think KISS are probably the only other band capable of suing their fans and then, once out of court, those financially out of pocket fans will still manage to scrounge up enough money to buy the next set of KISS shot glasses and golf balls without hesitation. The mind boggles. Still, Some Kind Of Monster is highly recommended and I’m sure, or at least hoping that the KISS one that is currently being made will be just as amusing.

Even though taking the piss out of Metallica is almost as fun as ragging on KISS, I have to admit that I am still a huge fan (actually I am a KISS fan too but that’s a whole different article in itself). Sure, I don’t own the Load albums, the orchestra one, or their last 3 debacles (Sorry, Deth Magnetic, you showed promise but your production killed you) but that doesn’t matter because it’s Metallica. I just returned home from the USA with like 3 new books on the band. Maybe I have a problem? It wouldn’t be the first time this is pointed out to me. Still, Through The Never looks to be a whole load of fun. I am anticipating Saturday the 12th of October as I settle into my uncomfy seat for two hours and experience what’s sure to be the blockbuster event of the year. It looks to be a night of good times and no hassles. I hope you can join us.

Oh, and if you’re coming along to this momentous night, please open your Malteasers and potato crisps before going into the cinema. Thanks.