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The Revenge of the 80’s. Top 20 terrible remakes/sequels from the dark ages.

08/25/2011 Leave a comment

With the release of not one but TWO movie remakes based on 1980’s films this past weekend (Fright Night & Conan the Barbarian) not to mention an additional 5 already in theaters, Movie Monkey Shoot has compiled a list of the top 20 terrible 80’s remakes/sequels of films that should have stayed in the dark ages. Now the ironic thing is that out of all the truly outstanding movies that came out of the 80’s i.e. Amadeus, E.T., Once Upon a Time in America etc. Hollywood chooses to remake all the dreadful garbage that came out of that decade for fear of a massive revolt by the fans.

It doesn’t take a genius to realize that Hollywood has not only run out of solid ideas for films but has decided to go the tomato route and play it safe by remaking failed 80’s movies, TV shows, cartoons and even board games to cash in on the nostalgia factor for generation X and to further exploit that clever marketing gimmick of familiar brand recognition. If Hollywood does not stop remaking terrible 80’s movies and shows into horrendous 21st century garbage, I swear on Alf’s grave that I will stab Zach Morris in the neck with a knife if I have to sit through another failed 80’s reboot. Just stay away from Back to the Future and everything will be fine. Damn you Hollywood! If you were a person “I would flick you in the fleshy patch where your balls used to be.”

As if this needed to be mentioned, all of the movies on this list receive 1 star or less.

20. The A-Team (2010)

The A-Team for those of you lucky enough to not have been alive in the 80’s, was a cartoonish TV show about a group of mercenary’s on the run from the military getting into all sorts of mindless shenanigans. The show was mediocre at best and was rightfully cancelled after 5 seasons. Now the A-Team reboot was a 2010 summer blockbuster that tried to reinvigorate the diehard fans into possibly reviving the series for a 21st century incarnation. The film tanked at the box office and was a critical failure not to mention it happened to piss off the stars of the original series as being an unfaithful adaptation. I pity the fool who tries to remake this again.

19. Arthur (2011)

Arthur was a 1980’s comedy starring Dudley Moore as the eponymous hero and an academy award-winning John Gielgud as Hobson. The 80’s version was rather charming and the main character was extremely likeable as the alcoholic playboy. Unfortunately for us the producers of the 2011 remake decided to cast the most unlikable and untalented Brit to take over the role made famous by Dudley Moore and cast Russel Brand. Nevertheless the Russel Brand shtick wore off immediately after Forgetting Sarah Marshall and the movie was a total failure.

18. Conan the Barbarian (2011)

Now unfortunately for the former Governator he was to wrapped up in his divorce scandal in 2011 to have any say whatsoever in this abomination of a remake to his 80’s classic. Had he not been consumed with trying to hide his illegitimate children from Maria, he would have used his power in Hollywood to veto the decision to hire a listless Hawaiian in the role he made famous and would have at least tried to get someone who took a few acting lessons beforehand. Not to say that Arnold is a talented thespian by any means, but he did embody the role of Conan the Barbarian and made the film fun to watch. The 2011 version plays out like a death march written by mental patients.

17. Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps (2010)

The king of Movie douchebags made his triumphant return in 2011 as Gordon Gekko was finally released from prison for insider trading in the mid 80’s. Wall Street was a film that said everything it had to say in the original and a sequel was completely unnecessary. The fact that Charlie Sheen shows up in a cameo made this sequel all the more horrific. What happened Oliver Stone? At one point you were the ballsiest director in Hollywood. Why did you have to completely neuter the legend of Gordon Gekko and release this cinematic travesty. Not only that but you cast the most obnoxious actor in the lead role opposite Michael Douglas. Shia Labeouf should stick to running away from shapeshifting robots and steer clear from serious movies.

16. Friday the 13th (2009)

Remaking Friday the 13th was inevitable since we have already seen about 15 sequels all declining in quality from its predecessor. After Jason Voorhees last failed attempt at terror in space with the horrendous Jason X, the geniuses at Hollywood decided to keep Jason in the closet for a few years before rebooting the franchise for a whole new generation of salivating fans. No such luck. The 2009 Friday the 13th was an utter critical failure yet managed to make $100 million at the box office so rest assured, Jason will be back in a slew of new sequels.

15. Alvin & the Chipmunks (2008)

They ruined my childhood with this ghastly movie. Jason Lee as Dave? Enough said.

14. My Bloody Valentine (2009)

My Bloody Valentine 3D was lacking in the one crucial ingredient required of a good horror film. Suspense. This movie was just one eye gouging 3D murder after another without the least bit of concern in actually trying to scare the audience. The 1980’s original may have been Canadian cheese at its best but it still managed to scare the pants off every Canuck in the theater. 3D does not make a movie scary it only adds to the nausea.

13. Predators (2010)

This film was so bad that even director Robert Rodriguez took his name off as director and set up a fall guy with Hungarian director Nimrod Antal to take the blame for this attempt at trying to revive the Predator franchise. Rodriguez has proven time and time again that he is a smart man. Where was Alan Smithee when you needed him eh Rob Rod?

12. Miami Vice (2006)

Miami Vice the movie was a failure on so many levels. Michael Mann’s attempt to revive the 80’s TV show for a new generation was to dark, to moody and not very exciting. Apparently the behind the scenes drama between Colin Farrell and Jamie Foxx (who was rumored to be extremely difficult to work with) spilled out into their performances and what we are left with is a soulless TV adaptation that could have been much better with two different actors in the lead. Please for the love of baby jesus don’t even try to make a sequel to this Mann. If any of your movies deserves a sequel it’s Heat.

11. Yogi Bear (2010)

Before you attempt to comment me back to hell, I am surely aware that Yogi Bear has been around since the 50’s. But your fearless movie blogger only started watching him in the 80’s with the Saturday morning cartoons so for argument’s sake we’ll say that Yogi Bear is an 80’s property. Now the 2010 movie remake was just failure in a bottle. Not even the 5-year-old target demographic was mildly amused by the terrible mis-casting of Dan Aykroyd and Justin Timberlake as Yogi and Booboo and this remake subsequently ended up on various worst of 2010 lists deservedly.

10. Clash of the Titans (2010)

Where did Hollywood find Sam Worthington? Wherever it is they found him, can they please just take him back and let us forget we ever saw him. Worthington was adequate in Avatar. Adequate in the sense that the movie was so expensive with the creation of a giant race of blue people that James Cameron couldn’t afford to hire a decent actor in the main role of Jake Sully. Now the Clash of the Titans remake with Worthington in the main role as Perseus made the original actor Harry Hamlin look like Lawrence Olivier. This guy is just bad. He must have taken his acting lessons from 80’s reruns of Days of Our Lives. Even Liam Neeson and Ralph Fiennes seemed embarrassed to be starring in this POS and phoned in their performances. I hope the vacation house in Bermuda they bought with this paycheck was well worth it.

9. The Dukes of Hazard (2005)

The decline of societies intellect is nothing new. If you want undeniable proof that your average brain-dead TV fan is alive and well and voted for Dubya, The Dukes of Hazzard was at one point one of the most popular TV shows during the early 80’s. I don’t know if that speaks for the lack of quality of competing shows or the power of the Nielsen ratings when they drop off a ratings box at every trailer park in the South. This was the film debut of Jessica Simpson and sure enough she failed on all accounts and only made one more movie before retreating back to Top 40 Pop Music. That’s the smartest thing you’ve ever done Jessica next to dumping Nick Lachey, keep up the good work and stick to music.

8. Footloose (2011)

Footloose (2011) hasn’t even been released yet but judging by the trailer this will definitely not be as popular as the 80’s version with Kevin Bacon. For one thing the storyline where dancing is banned and the hero decides to rebel is completely out dated. Dancing is not banned anywhere in the country so the plot is a moot point. Secondly, Zach Efron who is the king of High school musicals thought the script was so terrible he immediately dropped out from the lead role and was replaced by back up dancer and non actor Kenny Wormald??? This has the stench of failure written all over it. Watch the New Trailer at the end of this post and see for yourself. They think they can make a movie about the deep south without any obese rednecks missing teeth, a bunch of good-looking preppy kids that can dance and Dennis Quaid as a menacing preacher? Hollywood has completely lost their mind.

7. Transformers 1,2 & 3 (2007,2009,2011)

Now I’m not going to lie, the first Transformers movie in 2007 was highly entertaining and exciting. Shia LeBeouf was still relatively unknown so his kooky antics were still amusing. But Michael Bay decided that he wanted to have his cake and eat it to and released the horrendous sequels Revenge of the Fallen and Dark of the Moon completely tarnishing the reputation of the original film not to mention the 80’s cartoon series it was based on. The two sequels were so mindless and incoherent it was as if the Transformers were simply raping your ear drums for two and a half hours with useless dialogue and incomprehensible fight scenes. Honestly could you really tell the difference between an Autobot and Decepticon during the many tedious fight scenes? I couldn’t and I know I am not alone when I say this, I would have had much more fun throwing my 12 dollars into the toilet and repeatedly bashing my head into the bowl then have to sit through another 30 minute endless fight scene in 3D. Michael Bay we hate you!

6. The Lost Boys the Tribe & the Thirst (2008,2010)

How Corey Feldman could not tell that this direct to DVD sequel was going to further destroy his career is beyond me. The words “going straight to DVD” is like the cinematic kiss of death. Just ask Steven Seagal to attest to that as I am sure he knows that better than anyone. The original Lost Boys was a classic example of how to make a great horror/comedy vampire film and has become a cult classic among horror fans. The rumor of a sequel was floating around Hollywood for 20 years. I would have loved to see the proposed The Lost Girls that was rumored but no such luck. What the geniuses at Warner Brothers released was the red-headed step child of the late Corey Haim and a movie sequel abortion of epic proportions. When your main vampire is the half-witted brother of Kiefer Sutherland and the best line of dialogue is Corey Feldman screaming “Who ordered the Stake?”, you know you are in for a terrible ride down memory lane. Corey Haim must be rolling in his grave.

5. The Smurfs (2011)

F*** YOU Raja Gosnell! You destroyed my beloved Smurfs from my childhood with this ridiculous adaptation that was clearly written by someone who has never even seen the original cartoons and has smoked way too much meth to function properly anymore. The normally hilarious Hank Azaria couldn’t even make this funny. Was he smoking meth too? That can be the only explanation for this ghastly mistake.

4. Prom Night (2008)

The original Prom Night was a great slasher film starring the orignal scream queen Jamie Lee Curtis. The 2008 remake had the amazingly bad soap opera actress and star of John Tucker Must Die Brittany Snow in the lead role. This was doomed from the moment it got the green light. The remake is utterly devoid of anything resembling scares, terror, suspense, acting, directing, etc.

3. Fat Albert (2004)

Who told Kenan Thompson that he was funny? I know Bill Cosby didn’t. Joel Zwick was to busy counting his Benjie’s from My Big Fat Greek Wedding to care. The fact that he is on SNL proves nothing. I mean seriously, Rob Schneider was on SNL. I think the only reason he was chosen to play Fat Albert is simply because he is young, black and starred in Good Burger. Those must have been the only three deciding factors when trying to find an actor to play Fat Albert. If they seriously wanted to get some laughs they should have put Jamie Foxx in a fat suit and you would have made a comic gem. I would have even accepted Eddie Murphy. But sadly all they could come up with was Kenan Thompson and Fat Albert bombed magnificently. Hopefully we never see a sequel.

2. A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)

The 1984 Nightmare on Elm street was one of the best original slasher films that started the whole genre. Wes Craven was at one point a great horror director and could create tension so thick you could cut through it with Freddy’s razor gloves. The 2010 bastardized “re-imagining” was too dull to be a horror film. Too boring to be an action film and not clever enough to elicit laughs or suspense. Jackie Earl Haley is no Freddy Krueger. The two elements that made the original so great were Wes Craven and Robert Englund and they failed to even mention this remake to them. A little input would have been nice from the creators of the original. Not in Hollywood, the place where Battlefield Earth was expected to be the next Star Wars. These guys don’t know shit from Shinola.

1. The Karate Kid (2010)

This movie has absolutely no credibility whatsoever. For one thing the kid (Jaden Smith) is learning Kung-Fu not Karate. He repeatedly takes his jacket off and puts it back on as part of his Kung-Fu training and who could ever buy that a tough Detroit street kid with cornrows like Jaden Smith would EVER get bullied? This film has more plot holes than swiss cheese yet it somehow made a billion dollars and a trilogy is inevitable. The one positive thing about this film was at least they refused to bring back Ralph Macchio.

Watch the new Trailer for Footloose here. ( Oct 14, 2011)

10 Fascinating things you may not know about Inglourious Basterds

08/05/2011 Leave a comment

Inglourious Basterds (2009) Quentin Tarantino *****

Inglourious Basterds has become one of the most popular films depicting World War 2 without actually having any scenes depicting war. Only Quentin Tarantino could pull off such a grand scale epic war film without shooting as much as one battle scene and filling the 153 minutes of screen time with fascinating characters and sophisticated dialogue. In celebration of the 2 year anniversary of Tarantino’s latest masterpiece, the Movie Monkey has dug up 10 fascinating bits of trivia you may not know about this outstanding film.

1. Donny Donowitz aka “The Bear Jew” played by cult horror film director Eli Roth who directed the hits Cabin Fever and Hostel, is also the director of the film within a film “Nation’s Pride”. His method for getting into the mindset of such a violent character was his habit of wearing the historically accurate wool underwear that WW2 soldiers wore as well as listening to Hannah Montana music which reportedly made him very violent and ready to kill anything.

#2 Director Quentin Tarantino spent over a decade writing and preparing the shooting script and has called it some of the finest writing he has ever done and yet has never explained the comical misspelling of the title.

#3 The mysterious scar around Lt. Aldo Raine’s (Brad Pitt) neck is never explained but believed to be the result of a near tragic lynching incident back in his hometown of Maynardville, Tennessee where he was an illegal moonshiner.

#4 Christoph Waltz who plays the terrifying yet charismatic Nazi Col. Hans Landa aka “The Jew Hunter” was a German TV and Movie star for 30 years before making his American film début in this film in the process winning over 30 awards including the 2010 Oscar for Best Supporting Actor.

#5 Before Christoph Waltz took over the part, Leonardo DiCaprio was already planning on playing the infamous character and had met numerous times with Tarantino discussing the role.

#6 This is not the first time Sylvester Groth has played real life Nazi Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels. Groth first played Goebbels in the 2007 German Comedy My Führer – The Really Truest Truth about Adolf Hitler directed by Dani Levy.

#7 B.J. Novak who plays Pfc. Smithson Utivich is an Emmy award-winning writer/director of the hit TV Series The Office where he also plays the egotistical Ryan Howard.

#8 The reason Joseph Goebbels throws an unexplained tantrum at the mere mention of former Ufa actress Lillian Harvey is because Harvey was the biggest star of the German cinema during World War 2 who was also helping the persecuted Jews escape Germany much to the annoyance of the Nazi’s and was ultimately forced to leave Germany for the US.

#9 The fake name that Brad Pitt’s character uses “Enzo Girolami” is the real birth name of famed Italian Director Enzo G. Castellari who directed the original 1978 The Inglorious Bastards which is completely unrelated to this film other than the similar title. Castellari also has a small cameo in this film as a German soldier.

#10 Irish-German actor Michael Fassbender is no stranger to war films. His first big break came when he was cast in the critically acclaimed 2001 HBO mini-series Band of Brothers and later achieved wider recognition starring in the 2007 smash hit 300 as Stelios, a loyal Spartan soldier to King Leonidas. His first starring role was in this years widely popular X-Men: First Class starring as a young Magneto in the X-Men origin story.

Leonardo DiCaprio and the Top 10 Most Successful Actors in Hollywood in 2011.

08/03/2011 Leave a comment

Forbes Magazine has just released their annual list of the most successful actors in Hollywood for 2011. Some of these actors on the list are inexplicably still successful after some recent disasters while others have made recent cinematic gold. There are a few excellent actors that unfortunately did not make the list even with a string of recent hits and critically acclaimed films. Where is Christian Bale, Matt Damon and Harry Potter? Maybe next year.

#10 Tom Cruise: $22 million

The poster boy for Hollywood Scientology has dropped to the tenth spot this year after topping the charts in earlier years. His latest blockbuster was last summers dreadful Knight & Day and he is hoping for yet another hit with his latest film Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol coming out this upcoming Christmas season. Very cool trailer with Eminem’s latest hit song but the film will surely be another convoluted mess. Watch the trailer here.

#9 Tim Allen $22 million

The ex-Tool Man is at number nine this year after his latest animated hit Toy Story 3 became the most popular film of 2010 and won numerous awards. Unfortunately his recent live action films have not fared as well with the ludicrous Crazy on the Outside and The Six Wives of Henry Lefay. If Allen can continue the Buzz Lightyear legacy and his upcoming return to TV is successful he will stay on this list for years. Tim Allen will next be starring in the upcoming ABC TV series The Last Days of Man.

#8 Mark Walhberg $28 million

The Fighter (2010)

Former Rapper and Calvin Klein model Mark Walhberg has evolved into a force to be reckoned with as both an Actor and Producer. With 2010’s widely popular biopic The Fighter along with the hit comedies The Other Guys and Date Night puts Mark Walhberg at number eight this year. Next up for Marky Mark Walhberg is Contraband with a release date set at March 16, 2012.

#7 Robert Downey Jr. $31 million

The Iron Man himself, Robert Downey Jr. has been on a hot streak the last few years beginning with the hit films 2008’s Iron Man and Tropic Thunder followed by Sherlock Holmes and the followup Iron Man 2. Next up for Downey is the sequel Sherlock Holmes A Game of Shadows released December 16, 2011 and the much-anticipated spin-off to Iron Man, 2012’s The Avengers where he will reprise the role of Tony Stark.

#6 Ben Stiller $34 million

Ben Stiller’s career has been hit or miss lately. His latest indie hit Greenberg barely made a notice while the abysmal Little Fockers was a monster hit. This triple threat Actor, Producer and Director makes it in at number six. Stiller’s next film will be the comedy Tower Heist along with Eddie Murphy and 2012’s Madagascar 3. Watch the hilarious trailer to Tower Heist below with a release date set at November 4, 2011.

#5 Tom Hanks $35 million

Coming in at number five is the always outstanding Tom Hanks, animated star of Toy Story 3 and the recent critical failure Larry Crowne where he directed himself co-starring Julia Roberts. Another triple threat actor, Hanks will more than likely have another hit with the upcoming Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close on November 30, 2011. Hopefully the rumors of a long-awaited sequel to his Oscar-winning role Forrest Gump turn out to be true.

#4 Will Smith $36 million

The former Fresh Prince of Bel-Air has not made a hit film since 2008’s Seven Pounds and Hancock. He will make his long-awaited return to the big screen with an upcoming conclusion to his most popular trilogy of films with Men in Black 3 and Bad Boys 3 both with a release date set for summer 2012. No teaser trailer just yet however watch the trailer to his outstanding 2008 drama Seven Pounds.

#3 Adam Sandler $40 million

The king of the goofy screwball comedy Adam Sandler makes it at number three this year after the release of the widely popular but moronic Grown Ups from last summer and this years ridiculous Zookeeper. Next up for Sandler is Jack and Jill where he will play dual roles as rival siblings one of which is an obnoxious and needy sister. Good luck with that Sandler. Watch the trailer below which looks like yet another goofy brain-dead comedy which is sure to be a huge hit among his target audience.

Jack and Jill

#2 Johnny Depp $50 million

Pirates of the Caribbean:On Stranger Tides

The most eccentric actor on the list who can play anything from a drunken pirate to a 70’s cocaine kingpin, a singing psychopath and everything in between. His latest fourth installment to the beloved Pirates franchise was one of this summers biggest hits. His upcoming film projects include another Hunter S. Thompson inspired character in The Rum Diary and a return to his TV roots in the big screen adaptation to the 80’s teen crime hit 21 Jump Street.  The release date for The Rum Diary is October 28, 2011 while 21 Jump Street will be released March 16, 2012.

#1 Leonardo DiCaprio $77 million

The most successful actor in Hollywood and one of the most talented coming in at number one is none other than Leonardo DiCaprio. Star of last years outstanding films Inception and Shutter Island will next be seen in a controversial biopic on notorious former FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover directed by Clint Eastwood which will be released October 21, 2011.

2012 will be another big year for DiCaprio as the title character in the remake of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and in Quentin Tarantino’s highly controversial Django Unchained where he will portray a ruthless plantation owner in the deep south during the Civil War slave era.

On the set of J.Edgar with Director Clint Eastwood

Inception (2010) **** WTF is going on here?!

07/21/2011 Leave a comment

Inception ****

While watching this amazingly original science fiction tale I couldn’t help but think to myself what exactly was Christopher Nolan thinking when he created the concept for this utter mind trip of a movie? I enjoyed the highly original premise (something rarely seen in Hollywood anymore) but at what cost? I felt like I had lost my mind after watching this.

This nightmarish film was a huge hit in the summer of 2010 because it asks the viewer to do one simple thing. Just turn your brain off and enjoy the ride. Something that is not to hard to carry out judging by all the mindless drivel we are subjected to on reality TV.

Leonardo DiCaprio is at the top of his game playing Dom Cobb, a secret agent whose “job” is to extract illegal information from the unconscious minds of his targets but gets wrapped up in the dangerous world of corporate espionage and offered one last chance at redemption by being given the highly impossible task of “Inception”, the planting of an idea into a subject’s mind as opposed to extracting it.

Does your brain hurt from that description? Do you still follow? No worries. There is plenty of Matrix style digital action and clever dialogue to keep your brain guessing the entire time and to give off the illusion that you are smarter than you actually are.

Christopher Nolan has proven himself a master film-maker with recent classics such as The Dark Knight, Batman Begins, The Prestige and of course everybody’s favorite backwards revenge tale Memento. But I feel with this film he started to finally believe all the hype and drowned in his own creative genius and made a film that is far too complex and convoluted with details. The film is definitely ahead of its time and will surely be considered a work of cinematic genius.

Inception (2010) ****

148 Minutes

Action, Sci-Fi, Drama

Directed by Christopher Nolan

Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ken Watanbe, Ellen Page, Michael Caine, Cillian Murphy