Thursday, October 29, 2015

Review - Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014)

At least the turtles had a little more personality than the Transformers. Obnoxious personalities, but at least they were characters, however creepy and hard to identify with. The rat in particular was too far on the gross side. I was too old to catch “turtle fever” when they originally came out, so I can’t say how a genuine fan would respond to this interpretation. I found it diverting but not much else. Verdict: mildly amusing.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Review - Exodus: Gods and Kings

What the hell, Ridley Scott? You’re capable of making big-budget historical epics. And this is what you do with the story of Moses? The overall dullness might have been alleviated somewhat by tossing in a miracle or two (seems like there were some in the original story, and Lord knows they had the effects budget for it), but this production can’t even manage that. Even the parting of the Red Sea comes across as an unnaturally dramatic tidal fluctuation. It’s like Peter Jackson saying “Y’know, this story has too many hobbits and elves and shit. I’m sure audiences would far rather see Bickering Humans: The Motion Picture.” Nope. Verdict: see if desperate.

Review - Hotel Transylvania

As is not exactly unusual for movies of this ilk, the cute moments are almost enough to make up for the weak story. Dracula creates a hotel where monsters can relax in a human-free environment. But when his daughter falls in love with a member of the other team … suffice it to say that this same picture could have been made for less money simply by not peppering the cast with singers and SNL alums. Verdict: mildly amusing.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Review - Muck

Are you a 12-year-old boy? Have your parents taken away your internet access because you spend too much time looking at pictures of bare boobs? If so, the idiots who made this fiasco have your basic needs covered. If not, seek elsewhere for even the simplest storytelling standards. This umpty-thousandth reheat of city-kids-attacked-by-mutant-hillbillies lacks plot, character, production values, anything that might justify its existence. Wish I’d skipped it.

Review - Strange Blood

The box sold this as Cronenberg-esque, which I suppose it was in the sense that it was full of rubbery effects and icky sex. A scientist invents a universal cure for all viral diseases, only to see it turn him into a blood-craving psycho. The story might have filled a 22-minute horror TV show or maybe a chunk of an anthology piece. But dragging it out to feature length involved a lot of filler. See if desperate.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Site conversion

It's time for 8sails to get an upgrade. More precisely, I'm going to switch to a new system for organizing the site and creating pages. I've been using Dreamweaver, but Adobe's new Muse system has caught my eye. It provides a lot more design flexibility, and it's just generally a lot easier to use.

However, I can't simply load the old site into the new software. That's an advantage, because I've found that often starting over from scratch is easier than adapting old work. Unfortunately it's also a disadvantage, because we're talking about thousands of pages. Literally.

In order to avoid making the challenge more daunting than it already is, I'm going to stop uploading new pages. Overall this shouldn't have too much effect on the "user experience." But it does mean that I won't be adding new movie reviews to the site for awhile.

Because reviews are one of 8sails' more popular features, I'm going to blog them here on The Octopus as I write them.