Year of Release: 2011
Genre: Sci-Fi / Action / Horror
IMDB Rating: 3.5 / 10
Level of Awful: Medium
Breast-O-Meter: 0 / 5
WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
As any of you who follow me on Twitter may know I’ve been suffering from a terrible craving for a cheesy sci-fi movie lately. Many people suggested Galaxy of Terror, but I couldn’t wait for my copy to arrive (I promise to watch it soon). When I came across Robotropolis I was immediately captivated by its cover with an almost toy-like android and decided to take a chance on it. With below average acting, a wafer thin plot and CGI that lies somewhere between The Asylum and SyFy Originals you really can’t go wrong with this movie. Robotropolis is a b-movie at its finest that’s daft enough to be a very enjoyable 80 minutes but not painful enough that you’d want to wash your brain off with bleach afterwards. It also does gooey body parts remarkably well.
You are watching GNN and reporting live from New Town in the south China Sea is star reporter Christiane Nouveau. New Town is a bustling new city on an island owned solely by MegaNational Industries and this is the first time reporters are being allowed in to film and document the amazing technological developments going on here. While New Town has been built up around an enormous oil refinery the main thing the teams of scientists and groups of cheap labour have managed to accomplish is the development of robots to help out with all the different kinds of labour we humans just don’t feel like doing. This can range from manual labour to raising our children. Of course, what can possibly go wrong when we place our safety and future in the mechanical hands of humanoid constructs incapable of experiencing an emotion?
Christiane has been absolutely enthralled with the robots up until this point, thanks in no small part to the fact that they know how to mix a decent cocktail. This opinion and perception changes a little, however, when she’s reporting on a little soccer game where one of the players is a robot. At one point, and seemingly unprovoked, the robot decides to shoot one of the players. After that the robot simply walks off, leaving everyone else utterly baffled as to what just happened. Since the only way to differentiate the robots from one another is by the printing on it that designates their job, it’s gonna be very difficult to find that one particular robot in this big city. Before a decent search can get underway reports start to stream in about robots attacking people. The problem here is the fact that the entire security force is comprised of robots as well…
I would like to raise the point that, despite the failure of the programmers to stop the robots from going on a blood thirsty rampage in the first place, the robots come with a more serious design flaw. These robots are meant to fulfill basic functions in society such as police, medics, construction workers and the like. Why then do all the robots come with built-in guns, drills, saws and flamethrowers? While this does make the killing spree much easier (and juicier) it would appear that the robots are a little over armed in my humble opinion. While trying to escape from the robots Christiane’s also going to try and keep reporting the news so that her boyfriend can earn himself a nice big pay cheque by dominating the 5pm news. After all, being in a relationship means having to make sacrifices. When the robots learn how to throw helicopters around and leave the humans with no way of getting off the island it’s up to Christiane and the two or three surviving tech junkies to devise a plan to bring the robots down and have them permanently decommissioned.
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- Men are always ready for a little girl-on-robot action.
- Robots are always moving the candy, gum and chips around in shops.
- Billionaires get to where they are by giving in to boyish whims and fancies.
- When the robot says ‘halt’, you best halt.
- The robot revolution will be televised.
- You don’t need functional satellites to beam footage around the world.
- Being hunted down by murderous robots isn’t overly different to visiting a Turkish bathhouse.
- Camera phones have video quality on par with the most sophisticated video cameras.
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Mega Shark VS. Giant Octopus
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
The Gingerdead Man
Year of Release: 2005
Genre: Horror / Comedy
IMDB Rating: 3.3 / 10
Level of Awful: High
WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
Charles Band strikes again! Except this time we aren’t dealing with homicidal dolls but rather the resurrected soul of a madman contained in a biscuit. It’s difficult to know what to say about this movie. In some ways it’s a little bit like the Jack Frost of the 2000s but with a lot more problems. At only 70 minutes long it manages to simultaneously feel too short for proper story development but also incredibly boring as you wait for it to end. As someone who likes to bake and watch horror movies I thought this movie may be a good way of bringing those two joys together, but sadly this batch of cheese flopped a little early and doesn’t leave the sweetest taste in your mouth.
Our tale of sugary misadventure begins during a robbery at a local diner where Millard Findlemeyer is shooting anyone who tries to stop him entering the cash register. Cowering in a corner is our lead female Sarah with her dad James and brother Jeremy. James and Jeremy try to be the hero and land up being killed. Millard seems to hear voices in his head and believes, like his mother always told him, that he has to finish whatever it is that he started, and this means killing Sarah. Maybe it’s because she’s a woman or maybe it’s because her jersey was quite tight, but Millard has a sudden attack of conscience and finds himself unable to kill her and instead only shoots to wound her before the police show up to arrest him. Later on we find out that it was Sarah’s testimony that lead to Millard being imprisoned and ultimately sent to the electric chair.
Since the loss of her father and brother Sarah has been effectively left to run the family baking store on her own since her mother, to deal with her grief, has resorted to the age-old method of Jack Daniels and shooting random buildings. Sarah has help from employees / friends Julia and Brick, but the bakery store is in trouble. Across the street arch-bakery nemesis Jimmy Dean is planning on opening up one of them there fancy eateries (we’re in Texas so I thought I’d give the lingo a bash) and running Sarah and co. out of business. He also has one bitch of a daughter, Lorna, who is hell-bent on making Sarah’s life a misery. Lorna, however, is blonde, which is always a plus. To ease her pain Sarah takes to making an enormous gingerbread man (maybe this is the bakery’s problem – shouldn’t you be making more than one biscuit at a time?) but, due to a sad string of events that includes demonic ginger seasoning and Brick bleeding into the batter mix, the cookie comes to life with the soul of Millard Findlemeyer, still obsessed with finishing what he started.
So now, with a killer gingerbread man on the loose, we find ourselves with Sarah, Lorna and Lorna’s man-toy Amos stuck in the bakery trying to escape the demented piece of confectionary. Although Julia and Betty (the mother) rock up and are attacked by Millar since they don’t know what’s going on, two questions occurred to me while watching the other three trying to dodge being attacked by the biscuit: 1. Sarah has the keys, so why they don’t just leave the building is a mystery and 2. HOW HARD CAN IT BE TO KILL A COOKIE?!?!?! And it’s not like he’s a little biscuit that can just run and hide either; he’s the size of a baking tray! Somewhere in amongst all of this we have time to squeeze in a good bitch fight, a rat, a budding romance, a moral lesson on the dangers of combining alcohol, shotguns and old ladies, the beginning of one man’s wrestling career and an inside look into the darker side of the baking industry and the lengths people will go to to ensure that they have the freshest, tastiest croissants on the block.
While this movie is slightly brain-numbing, it is worth a watch if you feel like watching something absolutely daft and mindless. And no matter how bad I may have found it, it won’t stop me from watching The Gingerdead Man 2: The Passion of the Crust 🙂
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- Druids now have a booming gingerbread seasoning delivery service.
- 2 cups flour, 1 egg and 1 soul. Mix well and bake until cookies sit up and try to kill you.
- Moral question: if a cookie eats baking ingredients, is it a form of cannibalism?
- Once-bitter enemies will become the best cycle sisters when faced with the threat of a killer gingerbread man.
- Coming face-to-face with a killer gingerbread man can make or break business decisions.
- When someone’s been run over with a car you should beat them repeatedly to see if they are still alive.
- Gingerbread men have a really bad aim.
- The best cure for massive blood loss is a breath of fresh air.
THE GINGERDEAD MAN TRAILER