Monthly Archives: September 2019

Movie Review – Rambo: Last Blood (2019)

Last Blood?  I sure hope so!

BQB here with a review of one Rambo film too many.

Part of me gets it.  Sylvester Stallone may be old, but he’s still kicking, so he wants to work.  The film franchises he’s made over the years are like multi-million dollar businesses, so you can’t blame a guy for wanting to make as much dough as he can for as long as he can.  Maybe, just maybe, he even loves the characters he’s created and wants to add more to their story.

It worked with Rocky 6 and the spin-off Creed movies.  But in Creed, an old Rocky is passing the torch to a younger fighter, whereas in Rambo…well, Rambo is old now.  The appeal of the original Rambo films was that Rambo was a bad ass who could murder throngs of villains with his pinky finger.

Today?  Not so much, and at least the powers that be realized that a shirtless old Rambo running around, shooting 700 henchmen without reloading his gun once wasn’t going to fly.

Ultimately the film is a mashup of Taken (in that the beloved niece of his housekeeper gets kidnapped by a Mexican sex trafficking gang) and Home Alone (as Rambo lures the bad hombres back to his ranch where he subjects them to a series of elaborate and brutal traps.

Part of me is nostalgic for the 80s action flicks I grew up with.  That part of me enjoyed it.  Another part of me is an adult and that part wonders whether, you know, just because something can be made, does that mean it should be made?

Was there a Rambo film with an elderly protagonist that could have kicked a lot of ass?  Possibly.  Trainers are an essential part of a fighter’s life, so that led to a lot of screen time for Rocky in Creed.  Maybe Old Rambo could have taken the role of a mentor to a younger soldier who goes berserk and, you know, as I say it, no that wouldn’t have worked.  This was probably the best Rambo that was possible.

Still, was it necessary to see our longtime hero tortured in his old age so needlessly?  The film begins with Rambo on a ranch, enjoying the outdoors, being one with nature.  He’s found friendship with his housekeeper because I assume the idea of Rambo marrying an age appropriate woman made Sylvester Stallone want to puke.  He’s even found the daughter he never had in the form of the housekeeper’s daughter that he helped raise so…I guess there wouldn’t have been much of a movie in letting Rambo live out his retirement years in peace but holy shit, it’s just sad this guy keeps getting tortured.

STATUS:  Shelf-worthy.  The violence is a bit over the top, even for a Rambo film.  There were a few parts where the gore was so silly I openly laughed.  If you’ve never seen the films before, the first two are the best and the third acceptable.  This latest, and hopefully last one, is worth a rental, but nothing to rush to the theater for.

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I’m Enjoying The Masked Singer

I usually don’t like reality tv shows, singing contest shows, etc. but I think they have a winner here.

The judges are cheesy as they throw out guesses that seem like they are pre-rehearsed, just to push the audience in a direction but ultimately, its a lot of fun.

If you haven’t seen it yet, celebrities put on masks and elaborate costumes and sing away.  There is usually a pre-packaged bit where the masked celebrity in a squeaky altered voice drops a few clues, but the clues are often vague and hard to pin down.

Currently, I’m trying to figure out who The Skeleton is.  I’m thinking either Dan Akroyd or Paul Schaeffer.

Who do you think the masked singers are, 3.5?

 

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My Online Auction Addiction and What Should I Do With My Punisher Helmet?

Hey 3.5 readers.

BQB here.

In recent weeks, I developed an addiction to an online auction site.  I don’t know why, just…so much fun memorabilia and while I’m not rich by any stretch I am finally at a point in my life where I can afford the very occasional frivolity.

Long story short, I bid on and won a Punisher football helmet signed by Jon Bernthal, the actor who plays the Punisher on the Netflix series.

It seemed like a good idea at the time.  In retrospect, I don’t like football.  I’m not a huge Jon Bernthal fan.  I think he’s ok. Honestly, I didn’t know his name and always referred to him as that actor who played Shane on The Walking Dead.  By the way, I always thought Shane sucked because his big gripe is that Rick was mad that he banged his wife like literally five minutes after Rick was presumed dead.  Although I guess if I thought Shane sucked then Jon Bernthal did his job.

Don’t get me wrong.  I don’t dislike Jon Bernthal….I just don’t worship the guy or anything either.

Long story short, I bought it with an eye toward putting it on a shelf that heretofore had nothing on it.  But when it arrived, it came in the helmet’s original box and inside, it was sealed in a plastic bag so….I guess now I’m worried about taking it out.

Will air, dust and fingerprints ruin the Jon Bernthal signature?  Should I just tuck it away in the closet somewhere?  Perhaps in ten years it would have a nice resale value?  In fact, maybe I could secretly root for Jon Bernthal to become an Academy Award winner so its value could increase.  Maybe Jon Bertnhal will score a role in the Toilet Gator movie!

Then again, I don’t know.  Maybe it would be fun to keep it on the shelf and look at it.  Perhaps I could get a glass case for it or something, or is a glass case overdoing it?

It is also signed by Ebon Moss-Bachrach, who plays The Punisher’s technical assistant Micro.  I gotta be honest, I only watched the first season so I didn’t know there was a Micro.  I had never heard of this actor before but I could root for him to be an Academy Award winner too.

Hell, if Bernthal and Moss-Bachrach win in the same year I could retire off this thing.

Sidenote- I gotta be honest, I originally wanted to win an Avengers football helmet signed by Stan Lee, but the bids on that were way too high for a humble blog proprietor to afford.

Double sidenote – This wasn’t totally silly because as a kid, I did like and read the Punisher comics.  I don’t know why, I just thought out of all the superheroes, he was the most believable.  He had no special abilities or powers.  He was just a vigilante who violated all norms of due process and criminal procedure law and just shot bad guys in the face.  Like honestly, I love Batman, but at least Batman would leave a bad guy hog tied so the cops could find him and arrest him and put him on trial.  The Punisher would just extrajudiciously decide that a dude was guilty and blow his head off with a bazooka.  As an adult, I do realize that this lack of due process is wrong though so Batman is probably the better vigilante.

In conclusion, should I leave the helmet sealed in the bag and inside the box and in a closet or should I take it out and put it on a shelf?

(Sidenote – I also bought a first issue, first edition GI Joe comic book that came sealed in a plastic case and a 1966 Superman Comic Book that did not come sealed in a plastic case and that after that, that was it.  OK it wasn’t it, I actually bid on a lot more things but thankfully, I lost all those auctions and then after that I stopped and quit cold turkey..)

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Movie Review – Ad Astra (2019)

Space.  There’s a lot of it.  BQB here with a review.

Similar to Interstellar, this film gives us a peak into the future of so-called “doable” space travel, i.e. there are no space operatic ships that fly at warp speed or laser sword battles or what have you.  Instead, it focuses on the idea that deep space travel is indeed possible if man is willing to invest the time and money.

Brad Pritt stars as Roy McBride, an astronaut who has been recruited for a sensitive mission – to find his long lost father (Tommy Lee Jones as Clifford) who, thirty years prior went on a mission to Neptune to search for alien life and then disappeared, never to be heard from again.

The first half of the film starts out strong, meditating on a number of blunders that humans would likely export from earth to outer space, namely America’s moon base has become commercialized with fast food joints on every corner and warring factions fighting over resources back home are fighting over moon resources as well.

The film is visually beautiful and inspiring, reminding us that, at least in terms of getting to the far reaches of the Milky Way, doing so doesn’t have to be the stuff of science fiction as long as we open our hearts, minds, wallets and are able to find people who are willing to spend long chunks of their lives on space travel.

While I don’t want to give away spoilers, I’ll say that the second half of the film is riddled with gaping plot holes and though I’m but an amateur, I’ll just say there are parts where the science doesn’t add up and the doings are unlikely.  There are points where it feels like the writers pushed hard through most of the movie only to take a nap at the end.

STATUS: Shelf-worthy.  Gets a little disappointing at the end.

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Is this Pug…

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…a cold pug who is being swaddled to warmth?

…a wise monk pug?

…a Jedi pug?

…a stoic pug?

…a pug who stole a towel?

…a pug who bought a towel?

…a pug who once was wet but now is dry?

…a member of an ancient order of pug assassins?

…a wise pug elder?

…a wizard pug?

…the keeper of ancient pug secrets?

What do you think this pug is?  Answer in the comments?

I Have No Topic

So please enjoy this photo of an adorable kitty:

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TV Review – Stranger Things Season 3 (1980)

Hey 3.5 readers.

BQB here.

It took me awhile but I finally got through Season 3 of Stranger Things.

These are probably bland observations but I’ll make them all the same.

#1 – The nostalgia factor for someone who grew up in the 80s is fun.  From the music choices to the overall feel, the Duffer brothers know that decade which is odd because I don’t think they spent a lot of time in it.

#2 – Often in movies about kids who save the day, the kids are usually presented as geniuses and the adults as bumbling idiots who get in the way  Here, not so much.  Hopper and Joyce are integral to the plot and aren’t treated like dummies getting in the kids’ way.  Also, the kids are kids.  They make kid mistakes and they need, or rather even seek out parental help because they know their limits whereas other films would show a kid genius who is just being slowed down by the adults.

#3 – Look away if you don’t want spoilers, but the final mall battle where the kids throw fireworks bombs at the monster is visually stunning and fun to watch.

#4 – Russians are the villains and kids and adults alike really dump on them throughout the season, calling them commies and deriding communism as evil and corrupt.  I didn’t think that was allowed anymore in today’s PC world, even in a period piece.

#5 – They do tend to work 80s era actors into the series.  Winona Ryder, aka Joyce was a popular kid actor in the 80s.  Sean Astin of Goonies fame has a brief role as her love interest in Season 2.  In Season 3, Cary Elwes of Princess Bride fame plays a villainous mayor.  Comedian Paul Reiser plays a scientist that experiments on the evil monsters.

#6 – I think the challenge for the show was trying to keep reinvent itself after an initial plotline that was cool at first but over time became somewhat limiting.  For example, after two seasons of battling evil monsters that inhabit the “upside-down” version of their town (basically, an evil parallel universe) one wonders why anyone still chooses to continue to live in Hawkins, Indiana.  Season 3 upped the game by bringing Russians conducting an evil experiment in the bowels of that 1980s staple, the shopping mall and it looks like (spoiler alert) Season 4 will likely involve a plot to rescue Hopper from the upside-down.

#7 – I’ve run out of observations but if you have any, leave them in the comments.  In the meantime, don’t click on the video below if you don’t want a spoiler.  Otherwise, enjoy the kids’ rendition of “The Neverending Story” theme song.

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BQB’s Friday the Thirteenth Inspired List of Mistakes People Make in Horror Movies

Hey 3.5 readers.

So, I’m a couple days late, but I hope you enjoyed (or at least, survived) Friday the Thirteenth.

Behold my list of horror movie character mistakes.

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Avengers Homecoming Dance Video

Hey 3.5 readers.

BQB here.  Just wanted to share this video that’s been making the rounds.  A bunch of kids at an Arizona high school did an Avengers themed dance routine and I have to say, it’s pretty on point.  Everything is so detailed that they had to have spent a ton of time on this.  The songs are keyed into the characters, they do battles, there weren’t any screw ups as far as I can tell, I mean, these kids could go pro.

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What is this Bunny?

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Is this bunny…

…a magic bunny who can grant wishes?

…an adorable bunny who poops rainbows?

…a wise bunny who can tell you the secrets to the universe?

…a murderous bunny who will bite your face off if you come too close?

…a happy bunny who will spread joy throughout the land?

…a kitty that someone has glued big ears to?

…a bunny who identifies as a dog?

…the actual Easter bunny?

…the King of Bunnytopia?

…a carrot addict?

…a carrot addict with such a serious problem that he steals from all the other bunnies just to feed his three bushel a day carrot habit?

Personally, I prefer to think this bunny is Dr. King’s dream come alive, for he is a perfect example of two colors working together to make something cute.  You didn’t think of that so you are probable a racist bastard.

But I forgive you because not everyone is as great as I am.  Anyway, let me know what you think this bunny is in the comments.

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