The Garbage Pail Kids Review


It’s time to look at a story from below the pail. I’m afraid that this film lives up to its reputation and just isn’t very good. There’s a lot of constant crude humor here and the kids look so bad that it makes the film hard to watch. Throw in a long run time and a poorly handled romance and you’ve got yourself a recipe for disaster. There really isn’t much redeemable in this film.

The film starts with Dodger getting bullied by Juice and the gang. He heads back to the magic store where he works part time. It’s led by a magician known as Manzini who has led a relatively quiet life as of late. He wants to keep it that way and warns Dodger not to let the Garbage Pail kids out. Unfortunately the bullies show up again though and beat Dodger up. While this is happening the pail falls down and the kids are set free. They save Dodger from certain death and he decides to enlist their help in impressing Tangerine. They agree to help, but warn Dodger that this may not be a good thing. So begins their tentative alliance.

You’ll definitely be asking yourself quite a few questions here. For starters, the Pail Kids seem almost too nice. Keep in mind that they were being held in the Pail against their will for many years. You’d expect them to hold some kind of grudge or something right? Nah, they don’t really seem to care much. Manzini very openly talks about how he’s going to stuff them back inside and they’re fine with it. Sure, the outside world is dangerous, but judging from how the kids constantly want to break out you can tell that they’re okay with this. The kids also seem like public knowledge to an extent as there is a whole prison just for them. This plot actually gets pretty dark at times as we find out that the kids are crushed. Maybe that’s how they are turned into cards.

Either way it’s hard to like any of the kids though as they just can’t help but do a crude humor joke whenever they appear. None of them have any self control either and aren’t very smart. There are no good qualities left for them so by this point they’re simply doomed. With a main cast like this there is just no way that the film can recover. Dodger also isn’t a good character as he keeps trying to go after Tangerine even when it’s clear that she couldn’t be less interested. She’s using him and isn’t even that subtle about it. He’s also quick to lie to impress her and we can’t forget that Tangerine is already with someone. Dodger just never had a chance and was deluding himself.

Tangerine is with the bullies from the start so that should clue you in as to what kind of character she is. I’d definitely give her a thumbs down here and the rest are just as bad. After all, the leader (Juice) gets a kick out of beating up a little kid. Not exactly the hallmark of a good character right? The only good character would be Manzini and even then that’s mainly just in comparison to everyone else. He has some pretty good lines like when he explains that he always marches forward instead of retreating. He also lands a good combo near the end. For the most part he does get beat up the whole time though.

As I mentioned early on, the film is quite long which doesn’t help either. It’s nearly two hours and you don’t want to be hanging around the Garbage Pail Kids for that long. They can’t hold their own movie so what are they possibly going to do for 2 hours? Nothing good, that’s for sure. The writing definitely gets a hard thumbs down because the film doesn’t make sense and it isn’t entertaining. We only get a few decent lines throughout the entire movie. The romance is pretty terrible since it’s obvious from the start that it won’t work out due to the age difference and the fact that Tangerine is one of the villains. There are no big twists or interesting moments to save the film either.

For one last logistical thing as well, lets look at a scene midway through the film. Dodger gets a ride with Tangerine to a fashion show. They start driving during the day and don’t arrive on the scene until it’s well past dark. As they are getting ready to head home Juice shows up so Dodger hides while they drive away. He then walks home……somehow. Think about how long the journey would be if the drive was many hours long by car. He would be walking for over a day at least and the kid isn’t very old. Maybe I’ll be optimistic and assume someone ended up driving him home, but personally I’m thinking this is just one of those logic moments that the film didn’t really think through. After all, the audience probably wouldn’t be focused enough to notice by this point anyway so it was a low pressure moment for the writers.

Overall, The Garbage Pail Kids is definitely not a film that you are gonna want to check out. It’s just pretty bad. It’s only PG so it’s not like the film throws in animal violence or anything like that, but in a way this speaks volumes on how bad the film is. After all, if it can get such a low score without those factors, well you can imagine how dicey things can get here. The only even slightly good thing about the film is the soundtrack which is admittedly pretty good. Still, if you haven’t seen this film yet then there’s no need to change that. Don’t let curiosity get the better of you as the film isn’t even bad in an entertaining way. It’s just not a good title and I can’t honestly see how the franchise ever got big in the first place.

Overall 2/10

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Village of the Giants Review


It’s time to look at an old film where giants came into being. I would say that it’s about how power corrupts, but these kids were already corrupt from the start so it’s more like they finally got to push people around. The film is pretty aimless for the most part though with many scenes being dedicated to dancing and singing in order to stall for time. It’s definitely a film that’s gonna get a thumbs down from me.

The film starts off with a group of teenagers crashing their car and they spill out into the rain. They’re all pretty rowdy so they start a mud fight and dance for a while. After that they figure they should try to find some shelter and head to a nearby village. In this village, Nancy and Mike have stumbled onto a new discovery courtesy of a kid named Genius. It’s a spongecake that turns you giant once you eat it. Mike is determined to get rich from this, but ends up giving some of the formula to a cat, 2 Geese, and a dog. Pretty soon the whole village knows about it and wants their hands on it. Mike tells them no, but the teens show up and eat it anyway. Now they’re all huge and they want to take over the town. Can Mike stop them?

This movie has quite a few problems so it’s hard to know where to begin. To start with, there is way too much singing and dancing here. That wouldn’t be a problem if they were good of course, but none are. The dances are the same motions over and over again. Each dance seems to last for an eternity and then the songs also tend to drag on. They never add onto the plot either so they’re definitely just here to drag out the film. The plot would barely have lasted 40 minutes otherwise.

Then the writing is consistently iffy. Mike ends up cheating on his girlfriend for a bit just to mess with the villains and fool them into thinking he was being tricked. Not a very nice partner to have eh? They tried the same trick on the girl only she didn’t even entertain it. (Although she was getting dangerously close) So you already can’t root for the heroes. Mike also doesn’t seem all that smart like when he tries to fight the leader of the teens. He’s luck that the hit didn’t completely destroy him. There’s also a scene where the town tries to tie up one of the giants and they actually succeed which was a scene that made no sense. With a single movement he could have knocked them all over, but instead the giant just seemed confused and almost mindless for a moment. It just didn’t make any sense.

Naturally the teens don’t make for good villains either. There’s a little friction between a few of the guys as they bicker a lot and for a wile there you think there’s going to be a power struggle. Surprisingly it never happens. The leader just folds every time the group wants to do something drastic. They definitely have a lot of fun making fun of the adults, but beyond that it’s not like they had much of a plan. Honestly they just would have gotten bored after a few days I expect. It all would have been routine by that point.

You can probably guess from the premise that this film isn’t really meant to be taken seriously. It’s definitely comedic for the most part but the film just isn’t quite as funny as it thinks it is. Take away the dancing scenes and that would have helped the film a bit for sure, but even without that there just isn’t much to the film. The dialogue is very weak and there are no likable characters. It would have been fun to have seen more of this from the adults perspective though. Maybe have a bunch of government guys walk in and start making demands or something. Instead the adults seem a bit slow on the uptake like when they order the teens back into the theater. I mean…they could have just squashed the cop so he got lucky. Also, how did nobody notice that they kidnapped the sheriff’s daughter? That seemed a bit iffy. It would be easy to grab her of course, but surely the town should have known about it.

Part of the problem throughout the film with the humans putting up a resistance is that the giants are way too strong. They could have easily ended the whole match in an instant if they do desired. The fact that they did not is really just plot hax. The film is riddled with plot hax. The characters should have had no chance until the formula wore off. Of course, the villains should never have gotten the formula if Mike was a little smarter and didn’t leave the key right next to the safe it was guarding. That defeats the purpose of the safe.

Overall, Village of the Giants is definitely a film you’ll want to skip. It’s pretty over the top but not in a good way. The Giants don’t actually alter the plot much at all. The film would have been better if it was just about the potion going out of control and making everyone giant. They would have had to learn how to cope with this smaller world now that they were giants. Instead we had to see Mike take down a giant spider which certainly wasn’t good. The film’s very cheesy and in some ways that’s good, but it makes too many errors to really stay afloat. Cut out the fanservice and this film could have had a shot. As it stands, you should stick to Godzilla for real movies about a giant creature.

Overall 3/10

Scooby-Doo! and the Curse of the 13th Ghost Review


It’s time to take a look at the movie sequel to the classic 13 ghosts show. This one finally shows us the 13th ghost and how he stacks up against the first 12. It’s a fun movie as they all tend to be although the writing was lacking somewhat here which does prevent it from being nearly as good as it could have been. It’s more or less what you’d expect but the lack of a supernatural twist does hurt it somewhat.

The film starts off with a flashback where Vincent and Mortifer are running away from some demons. Mortifer is unfortunately caught and destroyed (Someone dying in a Scooby Doo film? Immediate red flag) while Vincent escapes with the box. Together with the Mystery Inc he recaptured 12 ghosts. However, Scooby, Shaggy, and Daphne decided to pretend that they did not know who Vincent was and threw the magic ball in a closet somewhere. Well, in the present the gang are having a garage sale as they were forced to stop being detectives after messing up a case. They need some quick cash. Fortunately, that’s when the crystal ball pops up and Vincent begs their help in stopping the final ghost. Velma and Fred are confused so now Daphne will have to step up and lead the team. Is she ready for this?

Unfortunately this is where the film is at its weakest. Rather than make Daphne a good leader it chooses to make Fred a bad one. Suddenly he doesn’t know how to set up a trap and the film goes out of its way to make him look bad. Daphne has to set up the traps because he forgot how to do so. He also can’t drive stick for some reason so he has to let Daphne drive the whole time. She basically takes control of the team away from him and part of the moral is that she was always the better leader. Fred even admits in a rather heart warming scene that he was never a leader, that’s just what they had thought. He’s a Cheerleader and decides to start cheering for everyone. He just looks really bad the whole time and it must have been a rough time for his fans.

Meanwhile, Daphne looks hardcore of course. To make up for Fred she has to double down in how effective she is. Daphne does give up a bit easy, but for the most part I’d say that this is still one of her best appearances. At least she is ready for this fight. You can’t say the same for Velma. Naturally she is still sticking to her story that there are no such things as ghosts. The film does its best to make her fairly justified in this by the ending though. Who knows, maybe it was all mass hallucinations or something. It would have been better if she didn’t keep flipping back and forth though.

Shaggy and Scooby are the same as always. They constantly panic and eat so not much else to say there. The scene of them meditating with the villain goes on a little too long I’d say as well. No way he would actually buy into that I’d say. The rest of the humor is pretty good though. Vincent makes for a fun supporting character. He’s a bit more helpless than I had expected but I did like all of the puns he would make. If he actually can’t use magic either though, it does give Velma’s theory a little more weight. There’s also a local teenager around. I won’t say who he is, but I think you’ll know immediately who he is. This isn’t the kind of film that has a bunch of suspects so if a new character is introduced you can start narrowing down who he must be.

The animation looks pretty solid as always. The team has this franchise down to an art. It’s looked good all the way back from when it first started all the way through the current days. The animation could fool you into thinking this was a DC film at times. The animation styles always look really similar and I suppose that makes sense as well since Warner Bros is involved. There isn’t much of a soundtrack though, but the series isn’t exactly known for that. The movie’s fairly short, but the pacing is good so it never gets boring or anything like that.

Once the final twist occurs some things won’t seem particularly realistic though. Lets just say that one character has to be an absolutely fearless racer with superb driving skills. This villain shows up everywhere and has quite a few skills. I dunno, I’d like to have seen the heroes challenge the evil car a bit more rather than running away the whole time. I suppose that almost may have been out of character I guess, but the team’s been through a lot so they shouldn’t really fear anyone at this point.

Overall, Curse of the 13th Ghost is not a film that will leave a lasting impression on you. It’s just a lot weaker than some of the recent films like the Wrestling ones, Cooking challenge, the outer space one, blue falcon, etc. It’s not so much that this film is bad because it isn’t. It earns a pretty good score. It just feels more like an average adventure compared to the rest and part of the problem could be the fact that there is no actual mystery here. That’s sort of the main focus of the series. You can get around that at times with a compelling premise of course. This one had a good premise, but simply didn’t follow up on it. That’s what held the film back.

Overall 7/10

The Prisoner of Second Avenue Review


It’s time to look at a fairly old black comedy film. It’s one of those films that has a pretty solid premise and starts out good. Then the film unfortunately falls off the deep end and never quite managed to recover. You sort of know where the movie is going with this before it gets there and it’s not the direction it should have gone. The film just isn’t all that satisfying and at the end of the day the characters do end up being prisoners of second avenue.

The film starts off with Mel losing his job. It had been a steady job that he had for many years, but that is all over now. Adding to his woes is the fact that someone broke into his house and stole all the clothes, money, and items. His wife Edna is distraught as well, but she manages to keep herself together. She even gets a job to support them while Mel looks for one. The problem is that Mel can’t seem to find a job anywhere and so naturally he gets jealous of Edna’s success. Mel decides to guilt trip Edna about this every waking minute and quickly loses his mind entirely. Edna will have to do what she can to bring him back from insanity, but can she pull this off?

Mel is really what drags the film down here. A lot of unfortunate stuff happen to him for sure, but his reaction to all of it certainly isn’t all that good. I think him losing his mind goes a little too far. It gets to the point where he starts swinging a knife around and yelling about global conspiracies. It stops being funny pretty quickly and just goes into being very tedious/annoying. I couldn’t wait for him to finally get past this. It happens when he mugs someone on the street and steals his wallet.

That’s when the film decides to double down by having Edna lose her mind. It’s the film’s way of trying to say that anyone can and will snap once they lose their job. It really undermines how hard Edna worked to keep the family stable the whole time. Couldn’t she have at least gotten her win here? By the end the message is that Mel will once again support them, but Edna had been doing pretty good on her own. A better ending would have been for her to have kept her job with Mel just learning to accept this. As it stands, he didn’t learn to accept anything. Things just finally went his way and he decided to stop sulking. Edna cracking the way she did felt extremely forced and unnecessary.

This movie is at its best when it’s just poking fun at everyone and embracing its comedic elements. For example, Mel’s relatives were handled pretty well. They naturally want to see him get well, but aren’t about to throw their life’s savings at him. In their defense, paying 20,000 to start a summer camp where he would be the head sounds like a terrible idea. This guy’s insane, how can he be around kids? I don’t think it would do him a whole lot of good either. Then the psychologist they got him seems like a scammer who rushes out of the room as soon as the paid hour is up. He doesn’t care about Mel’s problems in the slightest.

Maybe Mel’s plot would have been better if we were ever given a reason to care about him, but he has a sour attitude from the start. He complains about literally everything and just never stops. Rather than seeing the silver lining in a situation he always seeks out the small rip in what’s good. Nothing ever works out for him because he doesn’t see the good in things. Take his vacation to his brother’s place. Mel spends the whole time complaining and trying to leave. He never gave them a chance.

It’s almost ironic that you will probably be rooting for the neighbors in all of their encounters during this film. Mel picks fights with the guys above him and the girls next door. In both cases I would argue that they’re in the right while he’s in the wrong. The girls are just trying to have a good time and they weren’t all that loud as evidenced by the fact that Edna couldn’t hear them. You have to make an effort to be annoyed. Then the neighbors upstairs have little kids who are trying to sleep so having Mel yelling at the top of his lungs late at night is naturally upsetting. They were just trying to cool him off by dunking him with the ice water. It may be a bit drastic, but Mel certainly started it.

The fast paced dialogue is definitely the film’s strength. We do get a lot of witty moments and as I mentioned the humor is quite good when it is trying. Just the sheer fact that the apartment is so run down is a great source for many jokes and such. It’s also good to see New York City from back in the day and how so much has changed and yet so much is the same. It always makes for a good backdrop for any film.

Overall, This movie was pretty fun at times. For the most part it’s a humorous adventure. It just begins to take itself too seriously once Mel goes crazy and never truly recovers from that. Those scenes are just painful to watch and Edna should have been able to have gotten a win at the end. Instead she goes down with Mel and by the end none of them really have their dignity left. I was also expecting them to get more of a win with the shovel once it started snowing, but then the film ends abruptly. In my head canon the neighbors basically won this round since they did blast Mel twice.

Overall 5/10

My Cousin Vinny Review

This review is of the edited TV-14 version of the film. All thoughts below should be addressed as such as a review of the unedited version would be more negative.

It’s time to look at a relatively old courtroom comedy. It’s not “old” like 50s or something like that, but it has been a while since the 90s so I think the relatively part is warranted. It’s definitely a film that has a lot of good humor. The writing holds it back to an extent so it’s not the perfect courtroom movie, but you’ll be entertained from start to finish. It just goes to show how even a case that seems super easy at first can quickly become very complicated.

The film starts out with two teenagers on a cross country road trip. They go to a deli to gather supplies and then head out again. Unfortunately one of them stole a can of tuna (accidentally) and then the police show up. The teens are brought into the base, but while they think they were just being booked for tuna, it turns out that they have been framed for murder. Now their only hope is Cousin Vinny who recently got out of law school. The good news is that he claims he can win this case. The bad news is that it’s his first case and he failed the BAR exam 5 times. This could be bad.

Right from Vinny’s first appearance you can tell how things are going to play out and I definitely think it works out quite well. He’s the kind of loud, overconfident character that you want in your corner. He may not be particularly good at his occupation and if anything he’s a lot worse than you would suspect, but he always gives the case his all. The stakes may be high, but Vinny won’t get nervous because he doesn’t really take things seriously like that. Even if he loses, at least he’ll be able to make a funny out of it. He tows the line between being a complete comic relief character and someone who is genuinely clueless. Nevertheless, he tows the line quite well.

Meanwhile Mona is the main heroine and is always trying to help Vinny out. The problem is that he doesn’t want help as his pride demands that he win this case on his own. It’s definitely a bit of a weak argument on his part and I started to think that the film was leading up to Mona taking over the case. There was a reasonable amount of foreshadowing to it. She does ultimately enter the court room near the end, but not quite in the way that I had guessed. Mona certainly came through when it counted though.

Bill and Stan made for good victims as well. They definitely tend to panic a lot though, particularly Stan. He tends to make a bad situation even worse although I don’t blame him for trying to get a public defender. Of course that didn’t end up going very well at all. Apparently some defenders just can’t handle being in a high pressure situation like a court. It did make for a pretty good twist though since it was really unexpected. I wouldn’t have minded seeing more of Bill and Stan, but what we got was pretty sufficient.

Then we have the Judge who is definitely a great supporting character. He really wants to have a good court room so you can kind of feel bad for him at different points in the film when it seems like everyone is trying to make a mockery of it. Why can’t they work with the judge instead of against him? He really tries to fry Vinny several times even if it’s to no avail. For the most part he remains impartial despite this and does a good job in his role. I don’t think the film would have been quite as humorous without him. All of these characters were necessary to the final product.

As I mentioned the writing is very weak though. Fortunately the censored version cuts out the language but from the sheer amount of word bubbles you can tell that there was quite a bit. These characters definitely have a hard time being professional in the court room. The writing for the humor tends to be solid but the script could use work. It’s very give and take in nature and it still could have been worse of course. At the very least we didn’t quite hit Michael Bay levels of dialogue.

It’s a pretty small thing, but I was glad that for once the prison itself didn’t look like a total dump. The prison cell had been cleaned and the place was actually well kept. Usually in films like this the place looks real bad to the point where it is a little overdone. At least this way you feel like Alabama is giving them a pretty fair shake. The film also had a good way of making even the smallest of scenes important like the Grits moment. The scene is so intense they even use the revelation in psych classes to see if you can pick up on small details. I’d still like to try Grits someday. They sound a bit like Cornmeal.

Overall, My Cousin Vinny is a fun film. I gotta give it credit for actually being pretty funny most of the time. It does a good job of taking shots at the courtroom tropes while not overplaying its hand. The film’s length is definitely on point and doesn’t drag on. The pacing is good and the cast of characters are quite memorable. The only real weakness is the very weak script and the film probably takes a little too long in getting Mona involved. Regardless, I’d say that the film will hold up pretty well to repeat viewings which is always important. Find the TV-14 version of this film and check it out. You’ll be glad that you did.

Overall 7/10

The Graduate Review


It’s time to look at an old film about an affair. I haven’t seen too many home wrecker films and the ones I have seen like the Home Alone sequels don’t really focus on that part of the plot. As this one puts that at the front of the plot, it was doomed right from the start. After all, you can’t really root for a lead like that.

The film starts with the lead heading home after finally getting his bachelors degree. Right away you can tell that something is off with the lead as he doesn’t want to talk to everyone and keeps running away. It’s played partially for humor but even so the lead’s being overwhelmed by everyone happens too soon. You’d think that he could have at least bluffed through it for a while. Instead he tries to spoil the party for everyone. Eventually he is caught by Ms. Robinson who suggests they have an affair. The lead knows she is married but decides to go through it anyway. Then he starts to like her daughter and now he wants to try and marry her while dodging Ms. Robinson’s threats.

As you can see from the very premise, this film didn’t really have any potential. There’s just no way that a film like this could be good since there is no way for you to possibly root for Benjamin. He never even tries to deny Ms. Robinson as everything he says isn’t convincing in the slightest. As I mentioned he also handled his opening scene terribly as he gets upset at all of the guests for no reason. Why couldn’t he have just played along at least for a bit? He isn’t a motivated lead and just gets himself into more and more trouble.

Then his attempted romance with the daughter is just as bad. Naturally he shouldn’t be trying to get together with her and he didn’t even take the time to break up with her mother before starting. Then he follows her to the school and pesters her until she agrees to marry him. Benjamin has no tact and you’ll probably cringe at the ending. It’s a pretty sad ending for everyone involved and I’m going to say that there was a lot of plot hax in the scene. There’s no way that Benjamin should be able to overpower such a big group the way that he did. They should have knocked him out right there.

Naturally with a plot like this one there is quite a bit of fanservice to bring the film down with. You’ve also got some pretty terrible writing to worry about as well which doesn’t do the film any favors. If anything it just helps it sink further and further down the food chain. None of the characters are written well or even realistically. At that point all you’re left with is a sinking ship and I don’t recommend going down with it.

At least the song was fairly memorable with the Darkness bit being a meme recently. It’s a pretty reasonable tune although I’m not sure that I can really give the lyrics a whole lot of credit here. At the very least they weren’t as annoying as you may have suspected so that’ll have to do this time. Having even just one memorable song is still more than most can say.

On an unrelated note, I did like how the food looked. The amount of fries that the main characters got was pretty impressive. They definitely don’t give you that much nowadays unless you pay quite a bit to the store. If only we could have had more scenes with food then maybe the film would have had less time to dig its own grave. There’s not really any one thing that could have saved the film, but something that would have helped would have been a different main character.

If the main guy is going to be an antagonist anyway then he may as well be a confident one. Benjamin keeps on stuttering and acting timid the whole film which is always super annoying. It’s the film’s terrible way of trying to show that he doesn’t know what he’s doing, but he certainly does. He’s just putting up an act and it’s one that is a little too obvious to actually work. Also, it’s not as if there is any kind of justification for what he’s doing. He’s just trying to wreck someone’s family and he never actually feels any guilt over it. By the end of the film you get the startling impression that he doesn’t actually regret anything or even that he sees himself as the villain. He’s just happy to keep on going and probably wouldn’t change a thing.

Overall, This film isn’t particularly long, but it sure does manage to drag on and on anyway. I’d advise taking a step back and considering a different film over this one. You’ll be glad that you did and it’ll save you a whole lot of time and effort. There’s nothing good about this film from the writing to the “humor” to the terrible plot. A film like The Graduate just never graduated to the level of cinema that you would expect to see. As such it hasn’t aged well and I’d make the case that it was never even a good movie in the first place. It was dead on arrival.

Overall 1/10

Big Review


It’s time to look at a classic comedy film involving a form of body switching. In this case it isn’t a body switch like Freaky Friday, but more of a body upgrade as the kid turns into an adult. This kind of plot is always pretty interesting, but at the same time it can head into iffy territory very easily. This one does go there I’m afraid and ultimately doesn’t quite handle itself as well as Your Name did.

Josh has been having a tough time of it lately. He wants to impress someone at school but not only is she way older than him but she already has a boy friend. Josh runs off into the dark side of the park to try and forget this. There he sees a wish machine and wishes that he could be bigger so he could ride a roller coaster. As you can probably guess from previous wish type plots, the machine takes him very literally and decides to increase his size all the way to that of an adult’s. Josh tries to explain this to his Mom, but she’s not buying it. Somehow he has to find the machine again to reverse the wish, but he’ll need to find out where the circus is playing next. His friend Billy is ready and willing to help, but it’ll take a few weeks so in the meantime Josh needs to learn how to hold a job and live out this new life.

I think that’s where all the potential in these kinds of films is. Seeing how the kid in an adult’s body will handle the rigors of adult life. Honestly, most adult stuff a kid could totally handle. It’s just the taxes and finances that would probably start tripping him up. Josh is definitely lucky that this is a pretty old film as it was a lot easier to just walk into a shop and get a job back in the day. Being in charge of the toy section was also incredibly lucky for him. The film has a lot of nice scenes of Josh just enjoying this new situation. He can now buy whatever he wants and there’s little reason to go back to being a kid. Of course, he ultimately knows that he does need to return as it’ll be rough on his Mom if he doesn’t but Josh isn’t in as much of a hurry as he once was.

Where the film really drops the ball is the romance with Susan. Again, keep in mind that Josh is just a kid here. Even if he is in an adult body, it doesn’t make the romance any less iffy. He should have made sure things didn’t escalate since it’s hardly fair to Susan, but he decides to just enjoy the moment. The romance goes a lot further than you’d expect given the circumstances and it’s just hard for the film to recover from that. It’s a plot point that should not have happened at all. At the very least if the movie was going to go that route then Josh should have been aged up by a few years to make it less iffy.

Susan also doesn’t seem like a good character anyway. It seems like she has a lot of quick flings so she’s not very loyal. She takes the plot twists pretty well by the end, maybe better than she should. Then we have Paul who was the first rebound guy. He makes for a good antagonist, but of course he is naturally not here to be particularly reasonable. The scene of him trying to fight Josh in hand ball was pretty intense. I’m glad Josh didn’t let him cheat, but he certainly lost the fist fight there. Paul knows how to throw a good punch.

Meanwhile, Billy is a good friend to Josh. He does a lot of the research and puts a bunch of effort into getting Josh back into his original body. You can’t deny his work ethic, but I think he could have been a little more patient with Josh. Josh was ready to turn back to a kid after he finished some phone calls, why couldn’t Billy just wait a few minutes? Instead he pulls the whole “It’s either me or your job” card which isn’t particularly fair to Josh. Still, for the most part he is quite solid.

While the writing is decent for the most part, Josh could have been written a lot better. He’s extremely oblivious which is one of the reasons why the kids don’t usually rank. He doesn’t realize that he is acting like a kid half the time which is a bit iffy. Playing with his food at the ice cream store will probably make you cringe as well. He goes from being a kid to a grown up pretty quick mentally to the point where he’s probably gonna be pretty messed up once he becomes a kid again. Also, he could have done a better job of explaining things to the Mom. He should have gone with Billy and they could have proven themselves somehow or another.

I’d say that the best scenes here are when the characters first head to New York. I think the film did an accurate job of showing just how violent the city used to be. Gun shots were frequent and everyone was only concerned with staying safe. The New York pizza looks as delicious as ever and you’ll probably get hungry just looking at it. Getting any sleep the first few nights in such a rough neighborhood would probably be one of the hardest parts about suddenly growing up. I wouldn’t have minded just seeing more of the neighborhood and such.

Overall, Big is a fun film, but I can’t really call it a good one. Get rid of the romance and it’s a whole other ball game. After all, the film’s first half is where it is strongest. Once the film starts tying itself down with romance and drama it has less time to be a comedy. It’s unable to fulfill both roles. If you like the premise then I’d recommend checking this film out. Otherwise, Your Name is a better body switching film that avoids the issues that this one has. I definitely expect that Shazam will be able to pull off this concept more effectively.

Overall 5/10

Gremlins Review


It’s time to look at a fairly old film which has become really well known. You’ll likely have heard of the Gremlins even if you haven’t seen the film before. Going into it you may think that this is going to be a pretty intense horror film, but it actually blends together some comedic aspects along with being part parody. It manages the blend fairly well which automatically makes it better than most horror films. It’s so convincing at being a horror movie that it’ll probably take you a while to really establish any kind of opinion on it, but by the end you’ll have to give it some thought. I doubt we’ll see another film blend two genres like this so smoothly again in the near future.

The film starts off with the best character, Randall trying to sell his crazy inventions to more people. The main problem he is having is that aside from none of his inventions working, the buyers just don’t seem interested. That’s when he finds a rare animal that is being kept in a shady shop in China Town. He buys it and brings the creature home. There are only 3 rules that must be kept with the creature. He must not make contact with water, he must not be fed after midnight, and he must not be exposed to bright lights or the sun as that can cause the monster to die. He gives Billy this bundle of responsibility, but can the kid handle it?

As I mentioned, Randall steals the show. He’s a perfect example of a comic relief character who is actually handled well. His humor scenes work quite well and he’s just a nice guy. Randall means well even if his actions don’t always lead to the positive outcomes that he was hoping for. Stuff happens right? He’s part of why the film was able to establish such a good balance. He keeps it from getting too dark or serious. The only downside is that in comparison the main characters just aren’t very good. Before that, we have the other parent who also looks great. Lynn ends up having to defend her house from multiple gremlins and she does a good job of it. She blends one, smashes another, and is basically taking names the whole time. This is where the parody elements really help the film. Typically you’d expect her to just be screaming and running away rather than fighting back. Here, Lynn isn’t playing around. She’s defending her house and doing a great job of it. She’s another scene stealer.

Then we have the actual lead, Billy. Billy can barely hold his own against one Gremlin so right away you know that he is pretty much doomed. He doesn’t do a good job of looking after Gizmo either. He constantly lets things happen to him. How can you mess up not letting Gizmo getting wet or keeping him near bright lights? Billy makes every mistake possible. Part of it can be blamed on his friend Pete who is super annoying the whole time, but you gotta be more responsible when you own mythical creatures like this.

Meanwhile you have Gizmo who is the most heroic of the gremlins, but naturally he is the weakest as well. It’s always an unfortunate trope as you’d like the heroic one to be able to defend himself right? Well, that just wasn’t the case this time. He’s not a bad character but I do admit that he would have been better if he had gotten to fight a little more. Mostly all he does he sit around and watch everyone else. Then we have the heroine, Kate who may not be quite as skilled as Lynn or Randall, but she does all right for herself. Choosing to serve the gremlins was definitely a smart move to extend her life. I didn’t get her whole blowing up at Christmas scene. I’m assuming it has to do with some kind of sob story so I’m glad the film didn’t really elaborate on it.

On that note, the romance with her and Billy was very weak. It doesn’t really have anything to do with anything and just felt rather tacked on. I think the film didn’t need it. What also hurts the film a bit is how the Gremlins go after the dog and Billy doesn’t do anything about it. It’s obvious who the culprit is as the film goes on but he doesn’t put the pieces together. I mean, the old lady is a slight suspect, but how could she pull this off without making a sound? Honestly, it should have been impossible for the Gremlins as well. It’s a pretty bad scene all in all, but at least the dog lived and made it through this film which helps a lot. That saved the film from getting a horrible score.

While the writing is fairly reasonable for the most part, I do think the film dropped the ball with the conspiracy guy. These kind of films love to have one guy who believes in aliens or monsters and is constantly acting crazy. You’d expect him to be prepared when the enemies finally show up since he called it from the start right? Instead he ends up panicking and dies in one of the worst ways possible. It’s a “funny” scene that ends up falling flat. They didn’t need to do him like that. The character could have contributed a lot. The soundtrack is definitely really good though. We get a lot of classic Christmas songs which is always what you want to listen to here. The classics have aged well and giving this film a Christmas backdrop is nice. It helps to make the film more memorable and gives it a nice backdrop.

Overall, Gremlins is an interesting film. It’s certainly not the kind of film you might expect going in. It’s just a very unique blend of horror and comedy. It works reasonably well but there are still enough weak points to probably keep you from coming back to this one. If you really want to see what this blend is like then it’s not a bad film to check out. Otherwise I’d suggest you watch something with a bit more flair and hype like RWBY. That one can pull off any genre and perfect it.

Overall 5/10

Pokemon Let’s Go! Pikachu & Let’s Go! Eevee: Adventure Start Comic Review


It’s time to look at another quick Pokemon manga. This one is about the Let’s Go game and decides to frame the one shot as being about the kids playing it as opposed to taking place in the game. It’s a tactic that Nintendo used earlier with another Pokemon manga so I guess they thought it went well. I do like this approach. I probably wouldn’t want it to happen too often but it’s a good change of pace once in a while to keep us guessing. This is a nice one shot to quickly check out before you play the game.

It starts with two brothers getting their copies of Pokemon Let’s Go. The main character is a longtime Pokemon fan so he’s been waiting for this one while the other admits that he has never played the Pokemon games before. Naturally the lead decides that this won’t do and so he lets the brother play first. As he is playing, the main character shows his bro the ropes. How to land a good catch and stuff like that. As this game takes mechanics from Pokemon Go it is a very different experience compared to most of the classic Pokemon games. A tutorial like this makes sense for newcomers although Nintendo’s always done a great job of making their games pretty self explanatory so I don’t think it would confuse you for long. As they play the two main characters quickly realize that this may be the best Pokemon game yet.

At the end of the day this is basically a glorified advertisement for the Pokemon Let’s Go game. I think it’s a pretty effective one though. The artwork looks nice and it is a very realistic showing of what the game looks like. The screens on the TV in the manga look accurate and all of the advice is quite sound. I never ended up getting the game myself so I had to forego my chance at getting all of those crispy Meltan gifts, but it’s definitely a title I could see myself getting one day once it has been long forgotten by the masses.

Overall, This is another good one shot. It helps that I am just a Pokemon fan in general. I don’t expect you will learn anything new here unless you somehow missed the Pokemon Go boom. Still, it’s a nice enough story to remind you that for some people, Pokemon Let’s Go will be their first big Poke experience. It’s definitely something to keep in mind when playing. It may not be the best installment yet, but if you hadn’t played the others then I think it would rank even higher. I’ll definitely be ready for when the next big Pokemon game comes out.

Overall 7/10

Family For Christmas Review


It’s time for another Hallmark film! This one misses the mark a little more than previous films and I would say that it’s the weakest entry. Mainly this is because I disagreed with the film’s moral and Santa ends up looking like a bad guy here. It definitely gets a little dicey at times, but at the end of the day the film still handles itself pretty well otherwise.

Picture this, you are Hannah a world famous reporter. You’re making a 6 digit salary and have just aced another story. You are so impressive that the higher ups have decided to give you a promotion along with a new job in New York. Everything is going perfectly, but then you get a Facebook invite from an old flame. Your boss wisely tells you to ignore this request. Block the guy before he tries to steal your money. You heed the advice to the extent that you don’t approve the message and run to your office. Unfortunately Santa breaks in and throws you into an alternate reality. In this reality you married the guy from your past named Ben and have 2 kids. You don’t have a job anymore and are just barely scraping by on paycheck to paycheck. Santa also refuses to let you go home until you’ve learned to enjoy this new life so it could be a while.

You just can’t help but feel bad for Hannah the whole time. She’s clearly worked hard to make it where she is right now so for Santa to just take it all away is pretty extreme. Especially since he’s claiming that it’s her fault that this happened when he very clearly changed things up himself. She should certainly be upset and with good reason. The problem is that the film plays it out that this alternate reality is the better one. The film basically says that she should have turned down the career opportunity at the beginning so she could let Ben support her instead and become a stay at home Mom. It’s a very dicey alternate reality. If you ask just about anyone I’m sure they would agree that Hannah made the right choice. Now, why didn’t Ben go with her? If he was serious then he should have gone, but we learn in the alternate reality that he really loves his old home so he wouldn’t want to move. In that case they both made their respective choices and Hannah simply won out in the end.

The alternate reality is also pretty annoying as we find out that Hannah didn’t even stay true to herself. We have a small scene where some Moms are complaining about the soccer coach having the players try out and it’s implied that the Hannah of this world would have agreed with them. While she is still a real go getter here, she has lost any kind of competitive edge and is content to just stay at home and wait for Ben. There’s nothing wrong with that lifestyle, but to say that it is better than being the rich CEO with connections that Hannah was is a big stretch to say the least. What makes it worse is that Hannah was perfectly happy in her position. It’s not as if she was depressed or something like that, Hannah was absolutely balling.

So, Hannah is a pretty good lead. You just have to ignore the ending to an extent as it gets pretty cheesy since Hannah is bullied into making the wrong calls. Unfortunately, Ben is not a particularly likable character. I think we can blame a good chunk of this on the fact that the film makes it impossible to like him. He is at least indirectly responsible for what has happened to Hanna and since he isn’t understanding of her plight at all then it’s hard to sympathize with him. The guy’s just not very reasonable.

The best character in the film is actually Hannah’s boss. The guy’s very pragmatic and keeps things real. Unlike 99% of main guys who would have panicked when Hannah announced that she was leaving, he didn’t care. He wished her well and stayed professional throughout the ceremony. Now that’s a true boss/friend. Sure, he may have given up on the romance real quick as well, but if it meant staying professional then he would do it. The guy’s a quick talker and always has an angle. You can see why he rose to the top so quickly. The guy was born to be the big boss.

So, the whole premise/plot is a bit out of whack which is unfortunate. Still, the writing is good beyond that I suppose. The basic concept of trying to live out someone else’s life is always interesting. It’s the basic principle of why Your Name did so well in theaters. It’s a nice concept even if it’s one that has been done many times before. I don’t think this film did it as well as others, but at least it’s interesting. I do think Hannah could have been quicker on the uptake though. She slips up so many times that it starts to stretch your disbelief a bit. The worst part of this would be having to live out the romance which is why I guess it’s lucky for Hannah that she used to like the guy. Still makes for a terrible romance though so I have to give the film a thumbs down there. Body switching romance type plots just don’t work. You’re effectively making the guy cheat on his version of the character even if they are the same individual.

Overall, Family for Christmas is the first Hallmark title where I can’t give it the full 7. I have to at least dock one point for this plot just not being particularly good. Wrecking Hannah’s perfect life and forcing her to live this one for a few days is just way too brutal. The film would have been way better if we had stayed in the real world. Also, this Santa should have faced some kind of repercussions for what he did. Furthermore, the 2 kids in that version also weren’t particularly likable. They lost their patience with Hannah real quick and weren’t very supportive. I think Hannah should have just came out and told them that she wasn’t their real mother but in a less misleading way. Since they’re kids maybe they would buy into the Santa miracle. If not? Well, no harm done with trying. Hannah should have also doubled down with Ben a little more. Regardless, it is what it is. If you can get around the premise then this is still a good Christmas film to check out, but otherwise all of the others are certainly superior.

Overall 6/10