WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
If I’m being totally honest, after AE: Apocalypse Earth, I was feeling a little fragile. My inner sci-fi geek can take a lot, but that movie gave me a fair beating. Nevertheless, I’m not one to turn down an epic mockbuster, and Atlantic Rim was just too great an opportunity to pass up. So, with Tropical Mary, Stygian Mole, The Occult Specialist, and our new friend Ms Misery in attendance, we sat down to watch this movie. My my my my my. I don’t know anything about Pacific Rim, so this movie had to sell me with only what it had to offer. What might that be, you ask? Well, it has the usual terrible CGI, atrocious acting and cheap sets that one would expect from an Asylum production, but it also has some of the most ADD-ridden editing I’ve ever seen in a film. I know it’s sci-fi, but good God not everything can teleport that quickly! Needless to say, though, this movie is a ton of fun, although I would recommend watching it on the tail-end of a movie night so you have the benefit of mild delirium to cover up some of its not-so-great moments.
Deep at the bottom of the Atlantic ocean lurks one of mankind’s greatest threats: giant amphibious dinosaurs with backwards knees! No seriously, how these things can walk is a marvel in itself. No one knows where they’ve come from or how they’ve managed to survive down there for so long without any of us noticing, but they’re about to start wreaking all kinds of havoc. The first sign of their existence that we experience is when one of them, with no provocation and unknown intent, leaps up from the sea floor to destroy an oil rig. Apart from a quick and somewhat greasy lunch we don’t know why they are suddenly deciding to attack now, and no one back on land knows what happened to the oil rig / ate its crew, so it’s up to the military to fall back on some half-baked, untested battle plan to solve this maritime mystery.
The plan? Send 3 gigantic robots worth $500 billion down to the ocean floor to see where the hell the oil rig went and what the hell may have dragged it down there. These robots will be piloted by the best pilots the program’s remaining $15 worth of budget could find. Decked out in what appear to be wetsuits held together by pieces of coloured duct tape, White Douche, Token Black Guy (aka TYREESE!) and Generic Blonde descend to the bottom of the Atlantic to check things out. The mission is plagued with problems – the control room in the bots becomes sweltering after descending more than 3 feet into the ocean, they’re controlled using what appears to be joysticks from old arcade machines, and they tend to shut down at random (this, for some reason, also sucks all of the available oxygen out of the robot’s interior), so it’s all rather slow going. Oh yeah, and there’s that giant monster floating in the background trying to eat them.
The violence quickly escalates from this point – the monster appears on land, we’re treated to half-a-dozen shots of the monster looped and mirrored maybe 20 times, and suddenly there are dead people everywhere. Why? We’re not really sure. Now, it becomes obvious that the American Government can’t just allow these beasts to run around Manhattan, but the team’s divided. Admiral Hadley, the head of some-or-other division, throws his full support behind the robots. The opposing faction, headed up by a man with an eye-patch whose speech patterns clearly indicate that he has recently recovered from a stroke, proposes nuking the monsters (although the word, when he says it, ranges anywhere from ‘puke the monsters’ to ‘fluke the monsters’). With these two factions at war, Generic Blonde and TYREESE! being innately useless, White Douche being super douchey, and the robots themselves leaving a bit to be desired, does mankind really stand a chance against these backward-kneed behemoths? Watch and be completely whelmed by the whole experience!
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- It is possible for oil rigs to become dislodged from their bases, float around in the ocean, and crash into Iraq.
- You should always wear self-tan to a review board meeting.
- The best mankind-protecting-robot is one that’s commanded by someone with a lot of experience in Tae Bo.
- Every secret military base should be equipped with at least 100 horns.
- The more squint the monster, the greater the threat it poses to us all.
- No matter what the emergency, a woman’s eye-shadow should always be unfaltering.
- Nothing says ‘time for a drink’ more than blowing up $500 billion worth of military equipment.
ATLANTIC RIM TRAILER
WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
I know it’s not a horror movie, made on a tiny budget or generally shunned like most of the movies I watch, but there was a reason Tropical Mary and I watched this (with the Stygian Mole for backup): it was absolutely perfect for our series of Historically Inaccurate movies. Greek history is more Tropical Mary’s thing than mine, but after watching this we were both deeply insulted and hurt on a moral and ethical level. Granted, this movie is only meant to be loosely based on the myths of Theseus and the Titanomachy, but this is only true in the same sense that The Sims is loosely based on real life situations. In the wise words of Tropical Mary, a coffee table with a picture book of Greek history on it would have learned more through osmosis than these people did. I’m not going to give this movie a review, as such, because everyone and their grandmother has already done that; instead I’m going to provide you with our collective stream of thought from the beginning of the movie right up until the end.
THE COLLECTIVE THOUGHTS OF THE B-HORROR BLOG & TROPICAL MARY:
– In the beginning, there was The Cube, or hamster cage, or divine foosball table.
– Why is this hell hole modelled on the Pantheon?
– Mount Tartaros? How’d we get from the centre of the earth to a mountain with an amazing view of nothing?
– A Sibylline Monastery in the Greek Dark Ages? There are so many things wrong with that.
– I can see Theseus’ lips moving, but all I’m hearing is ‘I’m as gay as a fruitcake!’
– Why is this one wearing a shell loin cloth?
– This holy labyrinth could really do with a little colour on the wall.
– This movie is really just an epic tale about stupid hats.
– OK, so they’re caravanning to Tartaros? Why would you wanna do that?
– For such a terrible time in history, the dark ages came equipped with good plumbing.
– Why’s Mystique in this movie?
– Oh wait, it’s just the STRICTLY VIRGIN Athena running around half-naked.
– For someone who’s the king of the gods, Zeus is very baby-faced. Good stylish stubble though.
– Why would the Greeks have an Apis Bull of all things lying around?
– For a period that was known for geometric art, these sculptures are really life-like.
– You can’t walk ten feet in this movie without coming across a well with crystal clear water in it.
– A special weapon that you have to get out of a stone? I wonder where they got that idea from…
– Good to see that the citrus fruit trade is alive and well shortly after the Dorian Invasion.
– How are their monks running around?
– “Witness Hell”? How can they do that when they don’t know what hell is?
– There’s nothing quite as pretty as a virgin oracle wearing a giant lampshade.
– Me: “Why is Poseidon wearing giant earmuffs?” Stygian Mole: “Because he’s moonlighting as Lady Gaga’s backup dancer.”
– OK, so Poseidon went from being Zeus’ brother to Zeus’ son? Sure, why not.
– Mickey Rourke really needs to learn how to speak.
– Blood letting = correct burial rites.
– Why is the Minotaur a dude in a barbwire mask? And come to think of it, where the hell is Minos?
– Oracles shall henceforth be reclassified as ‘Rooi Rok Bokkies’ (watch this video for explanation).
– This virgin oracle’s about to have her visions defiled.
– The venus flytrap hat isn’t doing anything for this guy.
– Slow roasted faux oracles cook best in their own juices.
– How the hell’d they manage to get a hyena?
– Hat envy is the real reason everyone’s going to war.
– Good plan: Kill the god of war before going to war. Great job guys!
– They have a Hellenic Council? Really? Before they called themselves Hellenes?
– Movie: “He’s brought the olive branch of peace.” Stygian Mole: “Lies! It’s the poison ivy branch of trickery!”
– Why is there Elvish written all over these walls?
– Hyperion – the reason we can’t have nice things!
– This is a very loose phalanx formation.
– I guess every kingdom has to have a secret stairway to the main complex that isn’t at all guarded.
– Who thought it was a good idea to make armor that bends?
– These Titans clearly haven’t been given their rabies shots; they’ve all gone feral.
– These gods haven’t a single useful weapon among them.
– Surely it would have helped to bring the other 7 gods with you? Even if Hestia baked a cake, it would still be something.
– Athena’s kung fu fighting. That girl’s as fast as lightning.
– For immortal beings these gods are actually incredibly mortal.
– The greatest tragedy of all is this movie’s dialogue.
– Doing great things means you get rewarded with an ugly kid and a place among the gods.
– I do love a good pop-up frieze.
– The end.
BUY IMMORTALS AT AMAZON.COM
Year of Release: 2009
Genre: Sci-Fi / Horror
IMDB Rating: 2.8 / 10
Level of Awful: High
WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
Well, if nothing else, Sharktopus now makes a little more sense to me. With the discovery of this home video by Mega Shark and Giant Octopus, Sharktopus’ parents, it makes sense that the amazing hybrid hunter was such an angry and aggressive creature and it’s upbringing couldn’t have been easy. The affair that resulted in Sharktopus’ birth was evidently a brief and tumultuous one where there was a lot more fighting that lovin’ with the two one-time lovers being pitted against one another in a battle to the death. Let’s investigate this difficult time in order to better understand the psyche of our beloved Sharktopus.
It all started nearly 2 years ago as the next ice age was approaching: two ancient monsters, a mega shark and a giant octopus, were locked in a deadly battle to the very end. In the midst of this great battle the ice age happened instantly, freezing the ocean and the creatures solid. Flash forward to the present day and our intrepid heroine Emma MacNeil is busy piloting a submarine off the Alaskan coast and observing a pod of whales who are busy migrating. From out of nowhere a helicopter flies in and drops a device into the ocean that starts letting off very strong ultrasonic waves, disturbing the whales’ communication with one another and causing them to go off course. As a result the whales start bashing into the nearby ice shelf, cracking the ice and causing pieces to start falling into the sea. Of course, as bad luck would have it, this is the ice shelf that Sharktopus’ feuding parents are trapped in and, as the whales continue to smash into it, Mega Shark and Giant Octopus are released from their 2 million year tomb and both swim away to begin their reign of terror while Emma, not sure of what she just saw, tries to make it back to the surface safely.
The first sign that something is wrong in the world’s oceans comes when a whale is found beached with enormous wounds across its body. Not wanting to believe that something living could have done this the US navy quickly declares that the whale (which is remarkably hairy) must have been trapped in a net and hurt itself. The whale also has nothing to do with the Japanese oil rig that was attacked by some mysterious sea creature that the Japanese government is trying to cover up. Emma, of course, doesn’t believe this and, with the help of her old college professor Lamar and Japanese scientist Seiji, sets out to discover the truth about what is stalking the oceans. Emma steals a piece of something from the corpse of the whale and takes it to Lamar’s home so that they can try to figure out where it came from. After many hours, many viles full of luminescent liquid and a complicated and detailed looking computer analysis the home PC at their disposal spits up the word ‘tooth’. From here they simply have to go to any old book on the shelf to discover that it’s the tooth of a Megalodon, a now extinct species of giant shark. When tapes from the submarine mysteriously land up at the house they quickly realise that a giant octopus is also loose in the ocean and surmise that the two were once bitter enemies that were trapped in ice until the migrating whales set them free.
As is often the case with good scientists in a bad movie, as soon as they make their discovery they are arrested by the government and co-opted into trying to catch the creatures before they manage to attack anyone else. The plan? Pheromones. Attract them into natural bays where there’s no way for them to escape and try and capture them. That obviously doesn’t work because if it did we wouldn’t have the ‘VS’ part of our movie title. Plan B is to use the pheromones again but this time draw them to one another and let them finish the battle they started 2 million years ago. The use of the pheromones, of course, is based on the very scientific observation that, after 2 million years locked in ice, the creatures will be very horny. Tricked into believing that they’re gonna get lucky and armed with a natural predatory instinct the two sea monsters (who are capable of changing their size from shot to shot) are brought together for one final, sexually charged showdown to prove which one of them is the ultimate ruler of the waves.
Based on the natural enemies status of his parents, it’s really no wonder that Sharktopus is such an angry creature. Based on his lineage he is, in theory, his own natural enemy. It is my humble opinion that this ingrained self-hatred led him to go on the rampage that he did. Nevertheless the love, power and horrible CGI effects of his parents will forever live on through him.
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- Whales don’t swim. Their visuals just loop back constantly.
- Giant sharks can jump over 10 000 feet into the air and catch planes.
- Sex leads to amazing scientific discoveries.
- pheromones have a luminescent green colour.
- Tropical sea creatures are perfectly at home in the Arctic Circle.
- Missions are always a success when the officials in charge of them have no clue what happened.
- Japanese people in Japan speak to each other in English with an American accent.
- Any old Irishman can just walk onto a US Navy submarine.
MEGA SHARK VS GIANT OCTOPUS TRAILER