Sunday, March 18, 2012

Leprechaun: In the Hood (2000)

Links: TVTropes (film series), Wikipedia, IMDB (3.3).
Film reviews were mixed to negative.
— Wikipedia article, with characteristic understatement
The shtick of the horror-comedy Leprechaun series is summarized thus: (a) Warwick Davis is wearing ugly makeup to play an evil leprechaun; (b) he kills you while cracking jokes.  This particular one takes a... curious direction, by setting the film around a trio of wannabe rappers in LA.  The film is all over the place and, frankly, most of those places are clearly labeled "bad" on the map.  On one hand, the movie continually succeeded in dodging my expectations for the horror-comedy slasher genre and was rarely formulaic.  On the other... where to begin?  For one, I'd think that the threat of being murdered for stealing a leprechaun's supernatural property would sort of derail any plans you had for starting a musical career, not turn your career into the A plot.  For two, what the HELL were the creators thinking with the... well, I hate to use the word "transwoman", because the creators certainly didn't.  Did having that scene (you'll know it when you hear it) and playing trans panic for laughs really enhance the film?  Ignoring the massive problems, though, the movie does have some great stuff every now and then.  Particularly the zombie fly girls at the end.  Score: 2 stars out of 4 (your mileage may vary).

P.S.: I'm looking forward to rewatching Leprechaun in Space in the near future.  I recall it being much more enjoyable than this film.

Redline (2009)

Links: TVTropes, Wikipedia, IMDB (7.3).

Imagine F-Zero, Rock n' Roll Racing, Extreme-GSpeed RacerAkira, and Sailor Moon thrown into a blender, violently puréed into a chunky paste, and then gulped down with a bottle of Tapatío and a raw egg.  That's pretty much the best description I can think of for this film.  The foreground plot is pretty generic; the background plots straddle the line between nonsensically elaborate and totally random; and, well, you're not really going to get much in-depth character exploration either.  BUT IT'S SO SHINY!  AND IT HAS GIANT COSMIC HORROR MONSTER BATTLES AND DRAG-RACING POP IDOLS WITH MAGICAL PRINCESS POWERS AND CYBORG SPACE NAZIS ON SUPERSONIC ROLLERSKATES!  Score: eh, 3 stars out of 4 (the middle drags, between the races they forget they're not in a serious movie).

P.S.: A friend aptly said of this film, "I'm surprised this movie didn't travel back in time so it could retroactively be in Heavy Metal".