Home Alone (1990)

homeDirector: Chris Columbus

Writer: John Hughes (Screenplay)

Starring: Macaulay Culkin, Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern, John Heard, Roberts Blossom, Catherine O’Hare

 

Plot: An 8-year old troublemaker must protect his home from a pair of burglars when he is accidentally left home alone by his family during Christmas vacation.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Family Classic

 

Story: Home Alone starts as we see the McCallister family preparing for their Christmas holiday away in Paris and with 15 family members in the house the chaos begins. We follow 8-year-old Kevin (Culkin) who gets banished to the attic after misbehaving and wishing for a new family.

During the night, there is a power cut which makes everyone oversleep and an all-out panic to get to the airport on time leading to Kevin getting forgotten and left Home Alone. Kevin doing what every child would do on their own gets the run of the house but soon finds himself having to fight off two burglars Harry (Pesci) and Marv (Stern) and he uses all the weapons from inside the house to defend his family home.

Home Alone is always going to be the family comedy classic people can enjoy of Christmas the slapstick comedy works to perfection even if it comes off slightly violent for today’s audience. The solo setting inside the house Kevin is protecting all works to show just what one boy can do to protect his own home.

The acting all works great as Macaulay Culkin will always be remembered for this role and the turns from Joe Pesci in a comedy shows the range he had along with Daniel Stern being a great sidekick character to him. The rest of the family all work well giving good performance to show the different siblings Kevin must live with.

This is always being one people will talk highly about and it is hard to say anything bad about this true classic on the genre.

 

Overall: Fantastic Festive Family Film

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Movie Reviews 101 Midnight Halloween Horror Franchise – Tremors (1990)

termoorscasting card

 

Plot: Natives of a small isolated town defend themselves against strange underground creatures which are killing them one by one.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Great Horror Comedy

 

Story: Tremors starts as we meet handymen Valentine (Bacon) and Earl (Ward) who discuss the freedom and future when they meet student Rhonda (Carter) who has been studying seismic activity in the area. When the two friends decide to leave Perfection they keep running into obstacles with dead bodies.

When we see the worm/snake like creatures in an attack we watch how Val and Earl have to travel by horse too the next town while Burt (Gross) and his wife Heather (McEntire) search for Rhonda. The town’s people must fight off the freshly named graboids who are hungry for flesh.casting

Tremors gives us the checklist needed for a great horror comedy with stereotypical characters, the community feeling and a creature they have never seen before. Mixing this all together we get to see a real mix of horror comedy that pulls us into the survival story. I will say it was good not to have a really high body count because this could easily have ended up just being one or two versus the graboids instead of the community feeling which makes this feel fresher than other survival horrors.

 

Actor Review

 

Kevin Bacon: Valentine McKee is one of the handymen, he has his ideal woman in mind while considering a planned escape from the dead end town the two live in. when the graboids turn up Val must fight them off to protect the town. Kevin is great in this role showing he can pull off comedy action.

Fred Ward: Earl Bass is the partner of Val’s who believes they should leave town too, he tries to push Val into the correct mind set and has to help fight the graboids attacking the town. Fred is an actor I always imagine in a serious role but this shows what he can do with horror comedy.

Finn Carter: Rhonda LeBeck is a geology student spending time studying the seismic activity around the small town, she learns just how many graboids they are up against and how they are hunting, using this she helps the locals try and defeat them. Finn is good in this role where we get to see a smarter female character maybe the smartest in the film.

Michael Gross: Burt Gummer along with his wife are the local gun experts, they have a collection an army would be proud off. He proves to be one of the most important man when it comes to fighting the graboids. Michael is good in this supporting role but we now he will become the star of the show soon.

Support Cast: Tremors has a good supporting cast that all do a good job in this film making us feel how close the whole community of the characters are.

Director Review: Ron UnderwoodRon gives us one of the most entertaining horror comedies of the time which feels fresh throughout.

 

Comedy: Tremors has good laughs which shines through in the chemistry Bacon and Ward have.

Horror: Tremors gives us a new horror creature to see in action.

Sci-Fi: Tremors uses the idea of a creature we can’t explain for the sci-fi side of the story.

Settings: Tremors keeps most of the action in and around this small town in the middle of nowhere, it also builds the idea that they are trapped creating isolation which is always needed in a horror film.
Special Effects
: Tremors uses brilliant practical effects to make the graboids a constant threat.

Suggestion: Tremors is one to watch at least, it is a fun watch throughout. (Watch)

 

Best Part: Bacon and Ward chemistry.

Worst Part: Hard to find something.

Action Scene Of The Film: Final act.

Funniest Scene: Nearly every scene with just Bacon and Ward.

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Yes

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Budget: $11 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 36 Minutes

Tagline:  The ultimate underground movie. It will leave you legless!

 

Overall: One of the most entertaining creation in the horror comedy genre.

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Franchise Weekend – Predator 2 (1990)

predator2Director: Stephen Hopkins

Writer: Jim Thomas, John Thomas (Screenplay)

Starring: Danny Glover, Kevin Peter Hall, Gary Busey, Ruben Blades, Maria Conchita Alonso, Bill Paxton, Robert Davi, Adam Baldwin, Kent McCord

 

Plot: Amidst a territorial gang war in 1997, a sophisticated alien hunter stalks the citizens of Los Angeles and the only man between him and his prey is veteran L.A.P.D. officer, Lieutenant Mike Harrigan.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Enjoyable Sequel

 

Story: Predator 2 starts by taking us to LA in the middle of a drug war with Lieutenant Mike Harrigan (Glover) leading his team Danny Archuleta (Blades), Leona Cantrell (Alonso) and new member Jerry Lambert (Paxton) who has to start taking answers from FBI agent Peter Keyes (Busey).

When the crime bosses start getting killed as well as one of the men in Harrigan’s team it appears that the Predator (Hall) is cleaning up the streets using the same style of selecting its victims as we see how the Predator continues to collect trophies.

Predator 2 continues the idea from the original with an alien killing for trophies. The predator is only killing people he sees as a threats which we do learn from the original and this story continues to build on it. I will say having the Predator almost be the good guy does work because it does open the Predator universe to new possibilities in the future.

 

Actor Review

 

Danny Glover: Lieutenant Mike Harrigan is the hard working determined and rule breaking cop that gets the bad guy every single time but always finds himself in trouble from the higher ups. When his team start getting picked off he has to go against orders to find the killer who is also cleaning up the streets leading to a final showdown. Danny does a good job in this role showing how you didn’t need all muscles to take on the Predator.

Gary Busey: Peter Keyes is the FBI that comes into take over the investigation only to find himself having Harrigan following him around getting involved with the truth about why he is there. Gary does a good job but never truly make the character his own.

Kevin Peter Hall: The Predator is different one from the first film and this time he is stalking the streets of LA. It seems to be studying its victims making sure only to target the armed ones but when it kills one of Harrigan’s men it becomes the main target off his rage. I like how this film opens up the universe of the Predator character giving us a different direction in which it could go in the future. Kevin fits the bills for this character perfect with his imposing screen presence.

Ruben Blades: Danny Archuleta is Harrigan’s closest friend and partner on the force the two have been loyal to each other for their whole careers. Danny finds himself having to keep Harrigan calm whenever he would start to lose the plot. Ruben does well with the character that is not developed as well as it should.

Support Cast: Predator 2 has a bigger supporting cast than the original with Bill Paxton as fast talking charming detective being the star attraction on them.

Director Review: Stephen HopkinsStephen does a good job expanding the Predator universe.

 

Action: Predator 2 has plenty of action with a larger body count helping have wilder action scenes that original.

Horror: Predator 2 does use the horror element by showing all the different kills the Predator does.

Sci-Fi: Predator 2 throws the alien into LA as we see man versus alien coming through again.

Settings: Predator 2 is set in LA which works for the motives of the Predator wanting to only kill the threats with weapons.
Special Effects
: Predator 2 uses the special effects really well throughout.

Suggestion: Predator 2 is one for the action horror fans to enjoy as this is a good sequel. (Action Horror Fans Watch)

 

Best Part: Final battle.

Worst Part: LA is a busy setting.

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Has one

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Budget: $35 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 48 Minutes

Tagline: Pull over, park, and pray.

 

Overall: Good sequel to quality original.

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Kindergarten Cop (1990)

copDirector: Ivan Reitman

Writer: Murray Salem, Herschel Weingrod, Timothy Harris (Screenplay) Murray Salem (Story)

Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Penelope Ann Miller, Pamela Reed, Linda Hunt, Richard Tyson, Carroll Baker, Cathy Moriarty

 

Plot: A tough cop is given his most difficult assignment ever: to masquerade as a kindergarten teacher in order to find a drug dealer.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Classic Arnold

 

Story: Kindergarten Cop starts with Detective John Kimble (Schwarzenegger) tracking his prime suspect Cullen Crisp Jr (Tyson) who is searching for his ex-wife who is on the run from him. When Kimble finally gets his man he needs to locate Cullen’s ex-wife to finally put him away which means teaming up with Detective Phoebe O’Hara (Reed) and go undercover as a Kindergarten teacher.

The plan goes wrong early on when O’Hara becomes sick meaning Kimble has to take over the undercover role. Kimble trying to control the class becomes his hardest mission and trying to work out who the mother is just keeps becoming a difficult task with many leads from his class of Kindergarteners.

Kindergarten Cop takes the undercover cop genre putting a nice twist on it to make this also have the one man out of his comfort zone comedy. The action side of the story is toned down a lot but this isn’t a bad thing because we don’t really need this to be too action heavy. The crime side of the story shows that innocent victims can be the child but more importantly this film does show us the serious side that suffering child do go through if not dealt with accordingly. This is a great entertaining crime comedy that everyone does a great job in.

 

Actor Review

 

Arnold Schwarzenegger: Detective John Kimble has spent years of his police career trying to bring down Cullen Crisp, when he finally gets his man he must locate his missing wife that can finally convict him of all his crimes. Finding the wife means going undercover as a kindergarten teacher to find the son but this turns out to be a lot harder than Kimble had planned. Arnold shows how he can handle both action and comedy with this performance.

Penelope Ann Miller: Joyce Palmieri is a teacher at the school that Kimble takes a liking too. She has a son that is in Kimble’s class as her and Kimble get close she becomes one of his leads. Penelope is good in this role where we see both sides of her character.

Pamela Reed: Detective Phoebe O’Hara is the partner Kimble has to work with, she was meant to be the one to go undercover but when she gets sick she has to take the back seat. The two are an odd couple which adds to extra comedy in the film. Pamela is good as the sidekick and opposite to Arnold.

Richard Tyson: Cullen Crisp Jr is the man that Kimble has been tracking down but not before he learns about the location of his ex-wife who can put him away for the rest his life. Richard is good as this cocky crime boss.

Support Cast: Kindergarten Cop has a supporting cast which includes the fellow teachers, cops, mothers and most importantly the children who help Kimble unlock the case.

Director Review: Ivan ReitmanIvan gives us a good crime comedy that has a unique twist on the undercover cop story.

 

Action: Kindergarten Cop has action which is needed for the film but isn’t action heavy with just chase scenes being involved.

Comedy: Kindergarten Cop uses the situation to create the comedy as we Arnold in the position we would never imagine to be in.

Crime: Kindergarten Cop throws us into the world where we follow a cop tracking down a criminal, this is all easy to follow and helps the story out along the way.

Settings: Kindergarten Cop takes us to a small town for the most part of this setting as we see it be a place where people look to start a new life in.
Special Effects
: Kindergarten Cop has effects you would expect to see in this without needing to turn to them.

Suggestion: Kindergarten Cop is one I do think every could enjoy from start to finish. (Watch)

 

Best Part: Training the kids.

Worst Part: Television editing this film down.

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Sadly, we are having.

Post Credits Scene: No

Similar Too:

 

Oscar Chances: No

Budget: $26 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 51 Minutes

Tagline: An undercover cop in a class by himself.

 

Overall: One of Arnold’s best and most underrated pieces of work.

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Franchise Weekend – Robocop 2 (1990)

casting card

 

Plot: Cyborg law enforcer Robocop protects the citizens of Detroit by taking on a powerful drug syndicate, while a renegade OCP executive tries to create a new, superior Robocop using a crime lord as its subject.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Weak Sequel

 

Story: Robocop 2 starts with the city still covered in crime and most of the police force on strike but Robocop (Weller) and his partner Anne Lewis (Allen) still fighting the good fight. The Old Man (O’Herlihy) is still looking for the next level of robot enforcers being created and this time it is up for Dr Juliette Faxx (Bauer).

We have a new drug taking over the town created by Cain (Noonan) with the face of the sales on young boy Hob (Damon) which puts the cogs into Robocop arresting him because he can’t hurt children. When Robocop gets taken apart by Cain he is reprogrammed to be softer and weaker but once he reprograms himself t want to take out Cain.

Robocop 2 tries to continue the story the first one started with one corporation is trying to control the city including the police. We do have a new criminal threat and making one of the top bosses being a kid does come off original. In the end this is kind of the same as the original where it doesn’t end up giving us too much more that extra levels to everything involved in the first film.

 

Actor Review

 

Peter Weller: Robocop is one of the few men still fighting crime in the city but when his programming gets tested he finds himself being rebuilt and reprogrammed to be softer. Fighting the programming Robocop decides he wants to take on all the criminals just like before but this time he will meet a new match. Peter is good in this role without reaching all the levels he did last time out.

Nancy Allen: Anne Lewis is the partner of Robocop who instantly see the change in him trying to make sure he goes back to be the crime fighting machine he was designed to be. Nancy seems to get forgotten during the second half of this film.

Daniel O’Herlihy: The Old Man is still trying to find the best robotic law enforcement he can, well the one that can make him the most money and this time he turns to Juliette Faxx. Daniel is good in this role actually being involved more this time around.

Belinda Bauer: Juliette Faxx is the doctor working on the new idea in crime fighting, her idea is to use criminals to make the next robocops but does she know what she is getting herself into. Belinda is solid in this role but I don’t see the same swagger the two had in the first film.

Support Cast: Robocop 2 has a supporting cast that doesn’t have the biggest involvement in the film with most being the criminals Cain and Gabe who are the highlights of the film.

Director Review: Irvin KershnerIrvin gives us a solid sequel but not one that is as memorable as the original.

 

Action: Robocop 2 has the same violent action being used throughout even if it isn’t as strong as the previous outing.

Crime: Robocop 2 continues to show the crime wave going on inside the city with a new danger.

Sci-Fi: Robocop 2 puts us in the future where robot police officers are still being looked at as an option to fight crime.

Settings: Robocop 2 keeps us in the same city showing the two sides of the crimes inside the city.
Special Effects
: Robocop 2 has special effects that have started to look bad now.

Suggestion: Robocop 2 is one to only try it doesn’t have the iconic imaginary the original had. (Try It)

 

Best Part: Gabe is a great villain.

Worst Part: You feel the doctor is very forced.

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Yes

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Budget: $35 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 57 Minutes

Tagline: Even in the future of law enforcement there is room for improvement.

 

Overall: A sequel that doesn’t reach the same levels as the original.

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