Sizzling Bacon (2014) Film Review

“Sizzling Bacon” on Netflix was strange to watch.  Around four minutes in, the cook’s hands appear on the screen to flip the bacon.  The cook is never seen again.  What happened to him?  Did he die?  The ending suggests that something terrible has happened.   What other reason could there be to suddenly stop cooking the bacon before it has reached sizzling perfection?

Something just seems off about “Sizzling Bacon”.  Even after 16 minutes (possibly longer as the movie begins with the bacon already in the pan), the bacon still looks raw.  At first I thought that the footage may have been looped as the sizzling dies down and starts back up again near the 13 minute mark, but the bacon gradually changes appearance and does not convulse in any recognizable pattern.  There is a possibility that the events actually unfold backwards, but that seems too artsy for a movie about bacon.

“Sizzling Bacon” was slightly disappointing as the bacon on the cover is only used as a stock image in the movie for the opening credits.  Watch “Fireplace for Your Home” instead.  It is more pleasing to look at than two strips of uncooked bacon.

The Terminator Series is Confusing

I am chronologically confused about the Terminator timeline. I thought I had the first two movies figured out but now nothing is making sense. Was Kyle Reese always supposed to be John Connor’s father or did Kyle ruin the entire timeline? The future John Connor of the first Terminator film would have needed to be conceived by someone else besides Kyle or else John would not exist because Kyle was never sent back in time by John. I guess this means that the John Connor in Terminator 2 is different from the John Connor in The Terminator. Terminator 3 just makes the timeline even more of a mess and contradicts so many plot points. At least Terminator 3 explains how John Connor still exists after the end of the second movie. Judgment Day is just delayed, not prevented. If Judgment Day had really been prevented then John Connor would cease to exist because future John Connor would not have a reason to send Kyle Reese back to 1984…

Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus (2009) Film Review

I have been on a bad movie kick.  Some highlights include Mansquito, Plan 9 from Outer Space and Mega Shark vs. Crocosaurus.  None of them have been able to reach the bar that Sharknado has set for me.    I watch these movies with the hope that they actually might be decent and I use the term ‘decent’ loosely.  All I am really looking for is a movie that is laughably bad.  Seeing as how I had already watched one Mega Shark movie, I decided to give the first one a watch, Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus.  Unsurprisingly, it was bad.  Really bad.  It dethroned Sharktopus as the worst SyFy Channel movie I have watched.

I cannot understand how Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus received a sequel.  With a name like this, I expected to watch two creatures fight to the death throughout the entire movie.  There are very few scenes that have footage of the shark and even less scenes that show the octopus.  The movie focuses on bland scientists that interact with the US army to stop the creatures.  The acting is dreadful and just left me wondering when the amazing action would happen.  It never really did.  There is a final battle between the shark and octopus at the end of the film but it is so lackluster.  It is hard to make out what is happening and it looks like the same animations are being repeated.  It is anticlimactic.  Somehow the shark and octopus end up killing each other and they float to the bottom of the ocean.  There was no payoff for sitting through all of the terrible acting.

I understand that these movies do not have the biggest budgets, but it feels like a lot of money was wasted in trying to create a compelling story.  The movie is constantly changing locations and each location brings a new set of actors.  Maybe if the movie took place in one central location, there would have been more money for special effects and deliver on the premise of a shark fighting an octopus.

The sequel, Mega Shark vs. Crocosaurus, is a “better” movie and it stars Jaleel White so it has that going for it.  Anything would have been better than the first.  Avoid watching Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus.  Save your time and watch this 23 second clip from the movie.  It is the only 23 seconds worth watching.

Trending on BuzzFeed: Drawing Human-looking Cartoon Characters as Human-looking Cartoon Characters

BuzzFeed posted this article today:  “A Tumblr Artist Reenvisioned A Bunch Of Awesome ’90s Cartoons As If They Were Made Today”

The art is so uninspired.  It is a disgrace to the original shows.  Look at how much of a mess that article is.  Why do only some pictures have a list of the characters that appear?  More confusing is the headline, a “Tumblr artist”.  Nowhere in the article is a link to the artist’s Tumblr.  The source for each image is just a link to the artist’s deviantART profile.  The person writing the article didn’t even take the time to link to each individual image.  So lazy.  This is not the first time BuzzFeed has posted an article like this.

BuzzFeed posted an article in July titled “This Is What The Rugrats Look Like Now“.  Which article am I supposed to believe and why are people so interested in what the Rugrats would look like grown up?  There was an entire TV series based off of that premise.  I guess there is a novelty seeing memorable cartoon characters being redrawn in various art styles, but the drawings that BuzzFeed is showing off in both of these articles are uninteresting.  It just seems redundant, redrawing human-looking cartoon characters as human-looking cartoon characters.

Redrawing cartoon characters so that they look like a human works best if the characters in question are not human to begin with.  Take a look at this creepy drawing of SpongeBob, Patrick and Squidward as humans.  It may not be a particularly pleasant drawing to look at but at least it tries to capture the spirit of the characters instead of merely creating a generic caricature.  With the way BuzzFeed is publishing articles, I would not be surprised if there is an article showing off “cool” drawings of Rugrats as babies.  How far is it going to go?

Escalation App Review

“BE WARNED! THIS GAME WILL BREAK YOUR WILL TO LIVE.”

Displayed entirely in caps, this is the first thing that appears in the description for Escalation in the Play Store. Although Escalation probably won’t break your will to live, it is a highly addicting app. The premise is simple and reminds me of those old Bop It toys. Instead of twisting and pulling your way to victory, you are tapping and sliding. Blocks appear from the bottom of the screen and it is up to you to perform all of the actions that are displayed before the blocks reach the top of the screen. If a block reaches the top of the screen, it is game over.

Escalation Gameplay

Swipe and tap.

There are 50 levels to complete, each with an increasing speed. I am unable to tell if the levels also get longer or if they just feel longer because of how fast they get. For a game that is just about following directions it gets pretty difficult. I have only made it to level 29. I am struggling to imagine how crazy the last level must be.

Escalation Options

Pretty simple.

My only real complaint about Escalation is the lack of a level select option. In fact, the options menu is nearly empty. All that is there is the option to start a new game and view the credits. I guess the game does not really need any other settings than that, but it would be nice to choose to either start a new game or continue on the highest level that has been unlocked. Starting a new game is really only an option that is useful if you are showing off the app to a new player.

The ads in Escalation are unobtrusive for the most part. They appear from time to time at the start of a level and are easy to close. The only time the ads posed a problem is when one appeared after I failed a level. When you fail a level an ad will appear on the screen but the game still continues in the background. This will most likely cause you to fail the level once again.

Escalation is such a simple game. It does not seem like a game that would be particularly challenging but it will eventually catch up with you. Losing will always be your fault. This is why I keep playing it. It has to be possible to beat the game. Escalation has become one of those games that I will install on any Android device I own.

Interested in playing it?  Download it from Google Play

Rubber (2010) Film Review

A killer tire?  What will people come up with next?  Rubber has a crazy premise but it might be too weird for its own good.

The movie starts off with a police officer explaining how certain scenes from famous movies happened for no reason.  Just like the intro would suggest, many of the scenes in Rubber happen for no reason.  There is a subplot where people are gathered in a desert with binoculars to watch a movie which is actually the events of Rubber happening in real time.  It’s pointless.  I didn’t need to hear their reactions to the movie.  The worst part is that these scenes with the audience happen so frequently.   It is as if the director was trying to make Rubber longer than it had to be.  Maybe this should have been a short film.

The scenes that focus on Robert, the killer tire, are more tolerable.  If you are a fan of exploding heads, there are a handful of moments that make the film worth checking out.  If that doesn’t interest you, there is no reason to watch Rubber.

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire Review

So I had the opportunity tonight to watch “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire”. I was disappointed by the first movie because of the lack of Nazi cannibalism. In fact, I ended up reading the entire Hunger Games trilogy to see if there were any moments of Nazi cannibalism. There isn’t. Having read “Catching Fire”, I was not looking forward to watching the movie. I was annoyed by the ending and found the general premise to be repetitive. For some reason, everything just worked so much better in the movie and it ended up being very enjoyable.

The biggest improvement in this movie over the first is the removal of shaky cam. The first movie relied on it way too much and it just became disorienting at times. In “Catching Fire” everything is clear, allowing you to easily see all of the action rather than just a giant blur. I wonder if the reliance on shaky cam in the first movie was just to cover up the fact that most of the action scenes are pretty uneventful. Maybe it is just me, but I would expect a movie about putting 24 people in an arena to fight to the death to be pretty gruesome. I mean, Katniss is extremely accurate with a bow. She could easily shoot someone in the eye. The kills by the other contestants could also be more extreme. It would be great if there was bodily dismemberment and geysers of blood. Even ripping someone’s spine out Mortal Kombat style could work.

While the majority of the action scenes are not particularly special, the settings are exciting to look at. There is just so much going on in the background of each scene. From the snow covered wastelands of the districts, the incredibly colorful buildings of the Capitol and the lush scenery of the Hunger Games arena, “Catching Fire” might be worth buying on Blu-ray just to admire all of the detail. Even the way people in the Capitol are dressed is fascinating to look at, even if it appears that everyone got fashion advice from Lady Gaga.

“Catching Fire” may just be rehashing the same formula as the first entry in the series, but the movie switches it up just enough for it to still remain exciting. Each character is unique and memorable. I don’t know how Lenny Kravitz got involved in the series, but he should make a comeback.