Zach’s Zany Movie Reviews: SEXTUPLETS (Netflix) (My New Worst Film Of All Time)

SEXTUPLETS is the worst thing since AIDS. It is now officially takes the top dunce cap spot as the worst film I have ever seen. It is probably going to be one of the final nails in the coffin of Netflix, which now has maybe two years left once Disney + and other streaming services arrive and take all their content back. You are telling me that Netflix is fronting checks to both Adam Sandler and Marlon Wayans for these types of shit films yet they fucking cancel Santa Clarita Diet? Fuck you Netflix. Once all of these other companies take their content, what the hell are you going to have left? 50 dumb Adam Sandler movies and another 50 dumb Marlon Wayans ones? All you have left is Stranger Things, and after one or two more seasons you won’t even have that anymore. You shit the bed with House of Cards (sort of not your fault) and you cancel everything else after two to three seasons because of financing issues. The only great original films you have produced was Mudbound and Roma. Everything else is absolute garbage except for passable good films such as almost everything you have with Noah Centineo or that one pageant film with Jennifer Aniston I can’t even remember the name of. Embarrassing. And I thought Wine Country was easily the worst film of the year. Sextuplets asked it to hold its fucking wine…

I’m reviewing this film to warn you all: DO NOT FUCKING WATCH IT. If you watch it and hate it, you are just wasting your time. If you watch it and actually think it’s a decent film like some dumb ass critic at Variety, please unfriend me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, wherever I’m linked to you on social media, because I will never talk to you again. That’s how bad this film is. I did not laugh, chuckle, or semi-snort one time. In fact, I was cringing half the movie of how badly it was written and acted. If you must know, the movie is about a guy named Alan about to have a baby, that doesn’t know any of his biological family medical history because he was adopted, so he gets a judge to unseal his adoption records, and he finds out that he is one of six children born at the same time, hence Sextuplets. Marlon Wayans decided to take the Eddie Muprhy/Martin Lawrence route and play all 6 of the characters (and a secret 7th one, but you can guess who he plays 15 minutes in before that character shows up at the very end of the movie). You thought Norbit was bad? This film makes Norbit look like the first remake of The Nutty Professor.

And each character that Marlon Wayans plays gets more ridiculous and more annoying than the last. The film starts out like a plain harmless Netflix comedy with no laughs, but once that first sibling, Russell I believe, shows up, everything goes straight to hell. Wayans plays everyone over the top, ridiculously annoying, somewhat probably offensive and stupid. 2 of them are fat, one of those being a woman (because why not?), one is tiny, small, and fragile (think that dumb film where Marlon Wayan’s face is on the CGI body of a baby) and has a bunch of medical problems, one plays a more mean, gross and perverted version of the original Alan named Ethan (just there so he can cut his hair and look exactly like Alan for some identity mix up stupid hi jinks bullshit), and then the last one plays a conspiracy theory black ginger. I shit you not. Some of these characters are going to be extremely offensive to some people (I don’t get offended that easily, but I can just imagine some people getting flabbergasted) and Tiffany Haddish now needs to sue Marlon Wayans, because the girl sextuplet he plays named Dawn, is basically just a more crass and loud fat Tiffany Haddish. Gun to my head, I couldn’t tell you which of the siblings was the worst, but I rolled my eyes a bunch at Dawn and Russell, and my eyeballs almost fell out of my sockets when we meet Jaspar.

What probably flabbergasted me the most is that this movie was based off a children’s book by the same name by Amy Krouse Rosenthal (I haven’t read it). The word BASED needs to be in bold and in huge letters because there is no way this film contains any of the books content, especially when a couple of F words and unfunny dick and fart joke humor comes flying about. I don’t understand how this film could’ve gotten made. Did anybody at Netflix or the director or any of the otheractors actually read the fucking script before green lighting it? Was Marlon Wayans last Netflix film, Naked, really that good to them (I thought it was meh)? I mean, this script is so, so bad. You have Michael Ian Black and Molly Shannon showing up in this piece of shit, and the latter does some pretty offensive long drawn out quips to one of Wayans’ characters midway through the film.

I just, I just don’t understand how this movie exists from Netflix, yet we will never get anymore of the masterful Santa Clarita Diet. Who is running the show here? The direction is awful, the make up is awful, the music is awful, the dialogue is awful, everything about this movie is abysmal. I then proceeded to look up the director, and of course he directed Marlon Wayans “hits” such as both dumb fucking Haunted House parody movies and the worse Fifty Shades of Black. They even warned other filmmakers in the film Tropic Thunder to stop making films like this with that Jack Black parody trailer, yet they still don’t listen (which I would watch a bazillion times before ever watching Sextuplets again). Please, for the love of God, even if you are laughing at my review and are curious to see how bad this thing is: DO NOT WATCH IT. DO NOT SUPPORT SHIT LIKE THIS. I KNOW I DID, BUT I MADE A SACRIFICE FLY FOR THE TEAM!!!

My last concluding paragraph is quite simple: FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOONNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEETTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Zach’s Zany TV Binge Watchin’ Reviews: STRANGER THINGS SEASON 3 (major spoilers)

It’s my birthday, and lately I’ve been getting a lot of notifications on messenger asking me about my in depth thoughts for STRANGER THINGS SEASON 3 (other than my short little tiny paragraph of my summation earlier this week), so here is an in depth review! A present from me to you…on my own fuckin’ birthday. Jk, jk, I love writing these things. But be warned, I’m just going to start running my mouth, and since a lot of people have finished the entire short 8 episode season by now, there’s no telling what I’ll start spouting out, so major spoiler warning from here on out. The third season of Stranger Things is a vast, vast, vast improvement on the very kind of….I don’t know….just there second season which felt like just a retread of Season 1 (even though I still liked it). It doesn’t however beat the glorious first season, and there are reasons for that, which I’ll get to in a bit. But needless to say, I really really really enjoyed Season 3, I just wished that it didn’t have any minor problems where it could’ve completely blown the first season out of the water.

I loved the whole Starcourt Mall, The Meat Monster, Scoops Ahoy, the Russian Commie Thread, Alexei, Billy being possessed, all the new elements that were brought to the table. When Will started getting goosebumps at the back of his neck again when they snuck into see Day of the Dead I was rolling my eyes, hoping that they weren’t going to do him possessed thing all over again a la season 2. Thankfully he just has a ‘sense’ now since he was in the Upside Down for so long and is not the actual entity. Making Billy that entity (who was already established as an asshole last season) and then having a minor little arc of redemption felt a little refreshing. The whole thing is like a giant 8 hour summer, retro horror/thriller, fun for the whole family movie where the first 2 episodes are all set up and the last 6 are fast paced pay offs. The only problem with this is that the whole thing feels a little rushed (although I’d rather it be rushed than strung out into 13 episodes with a bunch of needless filler) and that character development is sacrificed for plot the majority of the time. Let me explain.

Remember the scene in the last episode where Dustin is trying to get that number from his girlfriend Suzie (the joke is that she might not be real), this mathmatical number that will unlock the place where Hopper and Joyce need to get into to turn those keys and close the gate the Russians kept trying to keep open, probably hoping to weaponize the creatures and attack America? Where Dustin had to prove his loyalty to Suzie before she would give him this number by singing with her the theme song to The NeverEnding Story? Made you get all goosebumpy and all memberberry inside right? THAT SCENE IS A GOD DAMN JOKE AND COMPLETELY RIDICULOUS. It was a waste of time for all characters involved and if she would’ve just given him the number and then they could’ve sang it to each other, the gate could’ve been closed much faster, it could’ve served both story and character development at the same time, and Hopper might not have ‘died.’ I’m putting ‘died’ like that because, like everyone with a brain, I don’t think they would kill off one of their best and complicated characters. David Harbour is a master in the role, and like I always say, “no body, not dead.” Unfortunately I’m afraid they are just going to resolve the situation like they did with Eleven in season 1 and 2 where she ‘died’ but really just ended up back in the Upside Down place.

Other character development problems: Max and Lucas, who got together near the end of season 2, have virtually no character development between the two this season, they are together the whole time, barely an argument. She has a small arc with her brother Billy but it is completely rushed and half-assed. Eleven and Mike break up for the stupidest reasons other than to get some funny scenes between her and Max. All he had to say was, “Hopper told me to spend less time with you,” and everything would’ve been solved. The relationship between Eleven and Hopper, the father/daughter angle, is good in the first two episodes, and then they are separated the rest of the time, everything meaning to tie together in a sappy yet sweet letter at the end. If there was anything that season 2 got completely right, it was the relationship with those two. The Jonathan/Nancy lover thing, that was again, done better in Season Two, is kind of like the Max and Lucas thing here, they have a couple of arguments, but ultimately love each other and everything is okay. Thank goodness the acting all around, especially from Millie Bobby Brown, is top notch, other wise all these problems would’ve bothered me more.

Fortunately, there are some very, very good character moments that about evens everything up developmental wise. Hopper and Joyce’s relationship is the best it has ever been this season and has a pretty solid arc. And remember that last minute Steve and Dustin friendship near the end of season 2? Here, it is full blown brilliant and is even combined with a great arc between Steven and a new character named Robin (played by Maya Hawke, who looks just like her mom, Uma Thurman) that works with him at Scoops Ahoy (I want to work there). Even though they are in the mall (and the secret Russian underground base) basically the entire 8 episodes, every scene with all of them together work perfectly, including when Lucas’ sister joins the fray later in the season. Also that weird conspiracy theorist dude from season 2 that helped Nancy and Jonathan get together gets a cute, little, but strong and effective arc with a Russian turncoat, a scientist nerd by the name of Alexei, who loves Cherry Slurpees and Burger King but is empathetic with the American’s plight. Also, the CGI and special effects this season are amazing. The Meat Monster is the greatest horror to come out of this series, even more enjoyable than the original Demogorgan.

So basically because of some character development problems and that the 8 episodes went by way too fast, it did not beat Season 1 for me, but at times it came incredibly close. Blew Season Two out of the water, but to be fair, I still do like that season, and love this series. With Season 3, The Duffer Brothers have finally found their groove with the series, relying less on just nostalgia references and more on story and group dynamics. And when there are references, it isn’t just to say, “hey look! Remember this!” anymore, but is often introduced to be a foreshadowing plot point or a joke that hits hard and is immersed in the overall story. And it’s just fucking fun as hell. The 8 episodes went by fast because I completely gave myself to that world and everything in it. I would complain about that long wait times between seasons (it was almost two years! Oct 2017 – July 2019) but if that’s how long it takes to tinker it, and give us a great, almost greatest, season like this one, everyone involved can take all the time they need. Now all they need to do is just end it all next season, or at the most, Season 5, so the whole thing doesn’t become stale. *coughlikeHouseOfCardscough*

Zach’s Zany Movie Reviews: MURDER MYSTERY (Netflix) (No Spoilers)

MURDER MYSTERY is Adam Sandler’s best Netflix film. But it’s still a piece of shit and one of the worst films of the year. Other than the wonderful Chris Farley tribute song Sandler’s has been doing with his stand up tour and just redid on a recent episode of SNL (the whole episode wasn’t bad either), he has been on autopilot ever since after Funny People bombed at the box office. So when you think hard about his filmography, what is Adam Sandler’s last best film? I myself unfortunately couldn’t come up with just one answer but instead three different films in three different categories: 1. Sandler’s last film where he wasn’t on autopilot but the film wasn’t all that good – Funny People. 2. Sandler’s last film that was good fun but not great and he wasn’t on autopilot – Click. 3. Sandler’s last great best film – 50 First Dates. So if you want to go with option 3, that means Sandler hasn’t made a good film since 2004….Holy….Shit….a decade and a half. Abbie Doobie!!!

If you laughed at those last two jibberish words you probably could’ve once called yourself an Adam Sandler fan. At least when he was doing his jibberish routine in Happy Gilmore, Billy Madison, and The Waterboy, he actually made us laugh and was trying to bring the funny. Every film he does now he is either doing it for the paycheck, the ability to take his real family on vacation while he works….or both. And it seems like every time the director yells action in a Sandler film now, Adam pops a Xanax right before he mumbles his first line. Murder Mystery is no different. I don’t want to even explain the plot so I’m just going to give credit to IMDB.com and just copy and paste their one line summary: “A New York cop and his wife go on a European vacation to reinvigorate the spark in their marriage, but end up getting framed and on the run for the death of an elderly billionaire.” See the key word there? Vacation? If you like films that struggle to find endless jokes about Claritin Vs. Allegra, random goats in the road, and aged ham combined with really dumb physical comedy that has absolutely no point, this film is for you. And unfortunately you are also to blame for these types of movies being made.

Unless you are living under a rock you probably know that Jennifer Aniston is in this movie too. And with this and Dumplin’ now under her belt, are we to assume she’s going to be the next once big celebrity stuck in this endless loop of Netflix assembly lined manufactured bullshit? Probably. In my opinion, I don’t think Jennifer Anison has ever been that great of an actress. She showed some potential in the movie Cake, but in everything else she seems like the same character. Again, in Murder Mystery, it is no different. She plays a bumbling wife on autopilot. So you are probably asking yourself if I hate Adam Sandler’s recent movies so much, why in the fuck did I bother even watching this? Gemma Arterton. Probably one of the most gorgeous women on the planet and was the only one in this that felt like they actually wanted to be there and actually tried. I will literally watch everything she does. And in the back of my mind did I have an alterior motive where I wanted another film to add onto my worst list of 2019? Abso-fucking-lutely.

Now I said in my opening that this was Adam Sandler’s best Netflix film, which is true, I wasn’t lying. I will give it two commendations. One, I did not guess who the killer was correctly. I had two theories, both were proven wrong. Two, Adam Sandler’s dumb friends don’t show up in this movie to ruin it. Well, to be fair, one of them makes a cameo as a disgruntled tourist, but the person has two lines, is far off, and I couldn’t tell at all it was Allen Covert until I looked it up, and those lines weren’t memorable for being stupid. So we’ll still count number two as a commendation. The rest of the movie is just filth. Adam Sandler’s arc is that he’s a cop (Sergeant) that has failed his detective exam three times, so I assumed that the movie would use his detective skills to prove he should actually be one in the end. WRONG. Sandler does maybe real detective work in only one scene and that is at the climax in a room where all the survivors are gathered. And that’s a HARD maybe. The rest of the movie characters just come to him and spout off bullshit and in another scene him and Aniston are making up dumb questions to ask the suspects in order for them to possibly confess. There is no real detective work done throughout the entire movie (save for the climax where he is literally putting two lines of dialogue/information together) , and in fact, if I was Sandler’s boss in that fictional world, I would fire his ass for being the most inept lazy cop in existence.

The whole time while watching the movie I was thinking of different and better ways the film could’ve gone, and obviously it didn’t go with any of those options. This entire film was an excuse for Sandler to go on vacation while he does some work on Xanax, while the director gets some gorgeous shots of a foreign city and country side. So other than Sandler, who is to blame? When looking this movie up I was surprised to find out that Sandler didn’t even write the fucking screenplay. But I wasn’t shocked by who it was, James Vanderbilt. He is responsible for Amazing Spider-Man 2, Independence Day 2, Darkness Falls, Basic, and White House Down. Literally the only film he has written that was great was Zodiac, but I have a feeling that was more because of David Fincher’s direction than it was the actual script. So in the end, with Netflix and Sandler, if you have the choice of watching Ridiculous 6, The Do-Over, Sandy Wexler, The Week Of, or Murder Mystery, which one should you choose? Always know that there is the option of not watching any of them at all. Think outside the box, something that Sandler hasn’t done in 15 years.

Zach’s Zany Movie Reviews: ALWAYS BE MY MAYBE (NETFLIX)

Thought this was going to be the Rocketman review didn’t you Sarah? Nope, first I want to talk about briefly the new Netflix Original film ALWAYS BE MY MAYBE that released on Netflix this weekend. And I don’t want to talk about it for the reasons you may think. Just to get it out there, the movie is okay. Not great, but not bad. It is your typical rom-com Netflix fare, with not being as terrible as the recent Someone Great, but not being as great as the recent The Perfect Date either. It stars Randall Park and Ali Wong. Randall Park you might know from Fresh Off The Boat, or as Kim Jong Un in The Interview, or even his great cameo in that episode of The Office where he pretended to be Jim to confuse Dwight. Ali Wong is the great stand up comedian who has some great stand up specials on Netflix and other platforms right now. If you really want to laugh and enjoy her in something, I would suggest to watch those specials, because she isn’t as outrageous in this as she is in those.

The set up is quite simple. They were best friends during their childhood growing up for a time, and then after Park’s characters mom tragically dies in an accident while they are in high school, she hits on him and in a vulnerable moment they have sex with each other. Right after they have sex he says some stupid shit and they stop talking and seeing each other for years. They then run into each other again when Park’s father and him end up installing air conditioning at Sasha’s new home. She’s just getting out of a relationship where her fiance dumped her because he never wanted to get married. They start hanging out again and start to develop their friendship and maybe more over a period of time, until they both end up getting someone else. And that’s where we get into the review where I don’t really talk about the rest of their story. Just know that it is cute yet predictable as hell.

If you haven’t watched the trailer to this film, and this sounds interesting to you, just watch it, as you won’t ruin a fantastic cameo that elevates the film from mediocre to actually decent. And if you are reading this I’m about to ruin the cameo so turn away or scroll to the last paragraph to read my final thoughts. **MAJOR SPOILER WARNING** Keanu Reeves shows up as Ali Wong’s beau about halfway into the film. He plays himself, but a hyper realized fictional version of himself where he is a weird self centered asshole that keeps mentioning his movies and career and likes to eat at weird places where you listen to animal sounds on headphones of the meat you are currently consuming (you’ll see). I’ve never thought of Keanu Reeves as a great actor (even though he tries to bring his A game to every role, here is no different) and even though he is completely over-the-top unbelievably cheesy in this, he is the best part of the film. I literally had a huge smile on my face for the 15 total minutes he is on screen and was wishing there was a spin off where he was playing this fictional asshole self of his. I won’t ruin anything else that happens during the meet and greet, but if he brings this insane energy to the next Bill & Ted film, we are in for a treat.

Anyway, there isn’t much else to say about the film. It’s sweet, and cute, yet completely predictable. The title more plays on the song, “Always Be My Baby” than it actually refers to him always being a maybe to be the man in her life, but that’s okay, it’s a unique title. Other than the cameo moments, I really didn’t laugh out loud that often, just chuckled and thought the film had some charming moments. Randall Park and Ali Wong are good and adorable in it though and have great chemistry and some sweet moments. It’s an easy 1 hr and 40 minutes to kill on Netflix if you are trying to waste some time on the weekend. It is neither offensive to watch or make you feel like you waste your time, but it isn’t the greatest end all be all best romantic comedy ever. It just exists, and isn’t harmful, and I guess with Netflix, sometimes that is the best we can hope for.

Zach’s Zany Movie Reviews: THE LAST SUMMER (Netflix)

Halston Sage left The Orville because apparently the shooting of this film THE LAST SUMMER, conflicted with her filming schedule of the very popular Fox show, and she decided that this was more important. Or you could believe the highly theorized and sort of proven explanation that what was really going on is that she was banging Writer/Star Seth McFarlane, they had a falling out, and since things were awkward, and he was the lead, Bobs your uncle. Either way, this movie was a completely bad decision on her part (she isn’t even the main, main lead). The first hour or so of this film is actually pretty decent, but then a very coincidental second act twist happens (a really really really dumb and unbelievable twist), and the films falls to all the cliched narrative devices for rom-com-dramedies that you can think of and slips past mediocre into oblivion.

I won’t reveal what that slight twist is, needless to say if you ever end up watching this you’ll know exactly what I meant when it happens. It’s eye roll inducing, very very poor writing just to move the plot along for convenience sake. Before we get to talking about how it completely sinks faster than the Titanic afterward, let’s start with the plot. It’s basically the #MeToo cautionary tale poor man’s version of Can’t Hardly Wait, except instead of stretching it out just one night with a very long party, it’s stretched out a whole summer, the last summer before high school kids go off to college. The main star is Riverdale’s KJ Apa, who is dealing with his iron wrought Dad and basically being forced into going to Columbia, his old man’s old college (She’s All That anyone?). He then runs into a former crush (Maia Mitchell), who is a film student going to a college near him, but she has problems opening up (every rom-com movie ever).

Then you have several more stories all going on at once and intertwined by certain people knowing other certain people. You have the couple (Halston Sage and Jacob Lattimore) that are eventually going to college’s really far away from each other, so they break up at the beginning of summer so they don’t have to deal with even worse heartache at the end of it. They end up finding other people really quickly, but they might not be what they bargained for. You have a girl (played by the wonderful Sosie Bacon, yes, that is Kevin Bacon’s daughter) that is trying to get into a college so she is taking care of a talented child that happens to have a cinema dream diva of a mother. You have a smoking hot looking dude making a sex wish list of girls he’d like to bang by the end of summer. And then you have two nerdy kids that try to make the most of their summer by doing adult things, so they dress up in business suits and go to a bar to try and get served without having to provide and ID, and they both end up with something much more.

Every story wraps up the way you basically think it will. Except for the two nerdy kids, that was an ending I was not expecting at all and glad the movie was able to subvert my expectations on their journey. But everything else is just cliched bullshit mish-mash that you’ve seen in every rom-com dramedy that has come before it. For one, it uses the most simple plot device you could imagine to get people out of their romantic situations so they can be with the person they were meant to be with: cheating. They use the “oh I thought you were special but you were actually cheating on me” card so many times in this film it made my head spin. Why can’t writers come up with a more natural way of splitting up two people with decent chemistry apart other than that one of them cheats on the other? Doesn’t make sense to me.

And then there is the twist with KJ Apa and Maia Mitchell’s plot. It is the most convenient twist I have ever seen come from one these movies in the past decade. I actually exclaimed, “are you seriously fucking kidding me?” when it was revealed. And I should’ve seen it coming too. Well, I kind of did, but was hoping and praying and trying to ignore my prediction thoughts, trying to give the movie the benefit of the doubt that the writers were smarter than that and wouldn’t go in that direction. Nope, they went there. The only saving grace of that twist is that KJ Apa has a dialogue with a different character late into the movie which actually felt real that tried to solve the predicament. Too little too late. My favorite story of the film was easily Sosie Bacon taking care of the younger girl over the summer. Even though that plot is probably the shortest of them all and the most predictable, Bacon’s acting elevates it in a way that it isn’t as bad as it could have been. I wish she was more of a star, she has this natural ability to come across extremely likable and realistic on screen.

The Last Summer isn’t a terrible film per say. The first half is actually decent. It’s just once that twist happens, everything else just falls into place on the cliched board of Hollywood Storytelling 101. It’s really really disappointing, especially when all the performances are good. This film would definitely not have worked in a theater and if it did somehow reach it, wouldn’t have made any money. That’s unfortunately what Netflix has become, the new direct to streaming service of films that nobody really wants to watch or looks forward to. I would recommend it to those just wanting to watching something mindless on a weekend afternoon, but other than that, I have a feeling this one will be another Netflix original lost in the crowd, and it certainly will not be the last one to achieve this status…

Zach’s Zany Movie Reviews: EXTREMELY WICKED, SHOCKINGLY EVIL, AND VILE (Netflix)

Whether or not you like and enjoy EXTREMELY WICKED, SHOCKINGLY EVIL, AND VILE depends on what kind of movie you are expecting. If you are expecting for Zac Efron to go around and brutally kill women for two hours just to see what made the serial killer tick, you are going to be very, very disappointed. Or if you are smarter, like me, and go into it expecting a deep character study, sort of a personality mystery/thriller, while seeing Zac Efron takes his acting to the next level, then you are in for a treat. I happened to really like this film, and that’s because going into it I knew it didn’t go around just showing how he murdered women and got away with it. I knew that it was going to have kind of a “did he or didn’t he?” mystery vibe (even though we know how it all ends). Combine that narrative with an analysis of how this one deranged psychopath got away with everything because of the way he could talk and convince people (maybe even himself) that he was innocent. As the latter type of movie, it is one helluva character study.

The movie actually only shows one woman abduction and no kills at all. It’s quite bold and brilliant. It is more of a courtroom drama once Bundy actually gets caught near the beginning of the film because of a normal traffic stop, and then it shows how he tries to study up as a lawyer and try to talk his way out of jail time and even the death penalty. He even tries to manipulate his current girlfriend and convince her there is no way that he did those things. Oh, and he escapes from prison several times too. If anyone who didn’t know who the hell Ted Bundy was or didn’t have a clue that this was a real story, the movie could’ve successfully make that audience member confused whether or not he actually he did those unspeakable acts. But since the movie knows none of us are that stupid, it tries to make you think about Bundy’s personality, actions, and way with words/women so that it earns the narrative it is trying to tell: that monsters come in many manipulative forms. And because of Zac Efron’s incredible performance, it earns that slight doubt that could be formed in the back of your mind.

If there is only one thing to watch this movie for, it is because of Zac Efron. It is easily his best performance and I would probably stand up and cheer if I hear that he is nominated for an Oscar next year. He is just that damn good, and it isn’t just an impersonation. He embodies all of Ted’s ticks, mannerisms, and way with words so well that Efron basically became what I know of Bundy right before my very eyes. It is so frightening but the acting is so good you can’t take your eyes away from the screen. Lilly Collins is good too as the current girlfriend that can’t decide whether she truly believes Bundy is innocent or not, but Kaya Scodelario steals the female performance from under her as a former protege of Bundy’s that increasingly becomes obsessed with him and his innocence for all the wrong reasons. And the end reveal of Bundy just slightly showing Collins character who he really is, is a pretty powerful scene in itself. The movie alone is also worth watching between Zac Efron’s and John Malkovich’s banter between one another in the courtroom.

Would a movie that actually featured Ted Bundy committing all those horrible acts, maybe add thirty minutes onto the film to incorporate it, be that great and/or better than this film? I honestly don’t think so. I think if we got that movie people would’ve complained that it glorifies violence against women and it would’ve put itself in a public relations nightmare just to promote the film to get people to see it. The filmmakers made the right approach. How did those close and distant to Ted Bundy see him? How did he get away with all that horror for so long? Not how did he kill this girl and watch Zac Efron try to recreate murder events. Plus, if you want to dig deeper into the psychology of Ted Bundy, the director of this film also did that ‘Ted Bundy Tapes’ documentary series that is also on Netflix anyway. They make quite a marathon/double feature. Like I said, your appreciation of this films depends on what you’re expecting out of this. Expect a really good character study, and you’ll be out of the woods with a grin on your face and thoughts about it afterwards. Expect a re enactment of the murders, you will not have a killer time.

Zach’s Zany Movie Reviews: SOMEONE GREAT (Netflix)

I’ll start this off by saying that I am really not this films target audience. At all. So if you are interested in watching SOMEONE GREAT, maybe with someone great (especially if you are both women and are both women besties and have ever been through a tough break up), I encourage you to still watch it. If you still read this review before or even after watching it, and if you liked it after watching it, take my opinion with a grain of salt. I did not like this movie all that much. It’s only an hour and 30 minutes, and doesn’t really know what it wants to be narratively until the final 15 to 20 minutes where it gets itself together in the climax. The rest of the movie just feels like incoherent dribble, a bunch of “pish-posh” road trip movie scenes to try and get to a good central idea and a wonderful speech by Gina Rodriguez. In these “pish-posh” scenes are three women that try too hard to curse as much as possible and be very, very crude as much as possible. It is fine if it feels natural, but all of the jokes and outlandish things these girls were saying felt forced. Sorry.

And it is a shame because other than the last strong 15-20 minutes, the three leads, played by Gina Rodriguez (Jane The Virgin), Brittany Snow (Pitch Perfect), and DeWanda Wise all feel like they have great chemistry. And the one real supporting actor, Lakeith Stanfield (Atlanta) is good in his scenes too. The whole thing is just out of focus. The movie centers on Gina Rodriguez’s character, having just woken up after her boyfriend of 9 years broke up with her. She needs a day to get herself together, so her and her two besties take off work and try and get tickets and go to a very exclusive concert while she analyses the shit out of her past relationship. She also mainly wants to see her friends again because she is about to move for away to a job she got with Rolling Stone. The movie dips into cliched road trip movie shenanigans trying to find tickets to this musical event, followed by one crude joke after another that keeps missing its target (I don’t think I laughed once during this movie, and I love crude humor).

Other than the great message about relationships, love, etc. etc. in a wonderfully worded dialogue speech at the end that I mentioned earlier. I didn’t really feel like I got to know how exactly Gina and Lakeith’s characters break up happened other than the fact that she was moving away and after 9 fucking years he doesn’t think he could make it work or would move with her (not like his job was that important). Like they show a couple of flash fight scenes between them, but sappy music plays over them and I can’t really hear what they are fighting about. I just don’t understand why they broke up. Seemed like they broke up for plot convenience. Now on the other hand Brittany Snow’s character, who gets a small tiny arc, wants to break up with her long time boyfriend, and after just two scenes, I got EXACTLY why. When you have the focus of the film being about whey the two main leads broke up, might want to make your message a little more crystal clear to EARN their reason for doing so.

All I am saying is that this movie should’ve added some scenes, and maybe gone through a couple of more rewrites. Definitely take the jokes out that felt forced and were not funny. But comedy is subjective, and maybe just this time it didn’t work for me. It’s not a terrible movie by any means, but it is pretty dull, bland, and forgettable until the weird strong climax, which 100% worked. That detail, style, and effort I wish was in 80-90% in the rest of the movie. Not to say that writer/director Jennifer Kaytin Robinson didn’t try. She clearly has potential as a writer and director with the climax and the chemistry between the leads, this just feels like a blueprint for later, much more superior work. I looked her up on IMDB and all she’s written really is episodes of MTV’s Sweet/Vicious…and I don’t watch MTV anymore for pretty good reasons. I’ve never seen that show, but maybe if you watch it and love it, you’ll love this? Someone Great should’ve been something great, but is only something eh.