If it's crap ... We'll tell you
Did you remember that 1997's sci-fi horror film "Mimic" was a Guillermo del Toro movie? I always forget. It didn't exactly blow us out of our seats when we saw it (as "The Reel Deal", for all you Spill history buffs) back then, but it didn't really seem hateful either. It fell between the cracks. Forward to now, the Big G is all famous and stuff, and he's gotten the chance to throw his weight around (and that's not a small thing) and re-edit the movie, with what extra footage exists, into a semblance of something more like what he originally envisioned, as opposed to what the studio actually put out. That being said, I suspect it's really not all that different of a movie, but I know that I am a different type of film viewer. Even in the new featurettes, with Guillermo going in-depth into the film and his reasoning as to the various changes made to the new version, he remarks how his own opinions on films has changed over the years, as the Guillermo in his 20's would be perhaps a bit taken aback by the movies the Guillermo in his 40's loves, and vice versa. OMG, that's totally me, because this time around, I freakin' loved this movie. Whether it's Guillermo's use of color and atmosphere (masterful) or just how much I love a gooey, bug-hunt, horror film, I'm a changed man by re-watching "Mimic". Mira Sorvino plays Susan Tyler, an entomologist who saves the city from a dangerous virus spread by cockroaches by introducing a new, genetically modified species into their population that kills them all off, and then dies. Oops, except it doesn't. Three years later it's back and in big numbers, as it's got a nest under the city and its warrior bugs creepily mimic people in order to walk through us relatively unnoticed. Easily the EEKiest of the various horror films that have used bugs for their creep-out factor, "Mimic" seems to me now like a solid piece of entertainment, if one kept from true greatness by some implausibility moments, unrealistic character motivations, and some sketchy CG at times (but GREAT practical work). If only I could give the finger to the 30-something Cyrus. I gotta talk to Fungusmonkey about getting that flux capacitor working.
--CLICK HERE TO BUY Mimic (The Director's Cut) [Blu-ray + Digital Copy]
HOW TO MAKE IT IN AMERICA - SEASON 1 (Blu-Ray and DVD)...Guest Review by LEON
This is another Mark Walberg produced HBO series that follows the lives of 20-somethings as they live, love and try to make it big. Instead of the Chase brothers and their entourage, the main characters are Ben Epstein (Bryan Greenberg) and his friend Cam Calderon (Victor Rasuk) who're trying to succeed in New York City's fashion scene. Ben is more of a prone to brooding Jewish kid (and the talent of the operation), whereas Cam is a fast-talking street hustler who got their funding as a loan from his Dominican gangster cousin. The easiest way to sum up "How to Make It in America" would be to say it's "Entourage" for New Yorkers who secretly wanted to watch "Entourage" but didn't because it was “too L.A.”. As such, it follows the same formula way too closely. Ben and Cam struggle to get what they need to make a brand new line of designers jeans, and for every setback, there's an almost inexplicable stroke of amazing luck that spurs them to keep going—almost to the point that they learn to count on it; it quickly begins to feel like there's no real conflict. Even with the money they owe to a scary dude like Rene (Luiz Guzman, who still has the face for looking scary despite the scores of comedies we've seen him in over the last couple decades), he threatens but never puts the hurt on them. There's some episodes that even focus on Rene and show what a teddy bear he really is...or is trying to become. The only other thing resembling a recurring conflict is Ben's inability to get over his ex-girlfriend (Lake Bell), and even that resolves itself by having her current boyfriend do something completely uncharacteristic just to force the issue. It'd be a funner trip if I were a young hick fascinated with New York's subcultures, or hadn't already lived through too many seasons of "Entourage" to not know exactly how it's all going to play out. As it is, I still found this series to be easy to watch all in one sitting, as every episode seemed to end 15 minutes after it began, and it's got an HBO-patented great theme song (“I Need a Dollar” by Aloe Blacc) but not much more.
--CLICK HERE TO BUY How to Make It in America: The Complete First Season [Blu-ray]