Saturday, June 30, 2012

Jason reviews Rites of Spring

Wow. Where to begin? How about with some deets on the plot: a ransom scheme turns into a nightmare for a group of kidnappers who become victims of a horrifying secret that must be paid every spring.

But boy oh boy, is that just the beginning of this highly entertaining throwback to the horror flicks of the late 70s and early 80s. Rites of Spring is the kind of movie John Carpenter would have made in his heyday. It's that good.

Yes, some of the acting is wooden. And the film just kind of ends, all Texas Chainsaw Massacre like. But -- and this is a heavy but -- nothing plays out quite as expected. There's the kidnapping plot AND another plot that has to do with the rites of spring. The way these two stories converge, and the slasher-film goodness that comes of it, are totally worth the watch.

Kudos to A.J. Bowen and Anessa Ramsey, who pull off great performances here, not that that's what we're all about in The Basement. Is there blood? Yes. Boobies? Yup, but not in a fun way. hotties? More than enough eye candy is present thanks to Ramsey, Katherine Randolph, and Sarah Parchelli.

The last 33 minutes of this movie play like gangbusters, satisfying all your horror needs. And the villain of the piece is pretty badass. This is a must for genre fans, and one I will watch again . . . and likely again and again. It's a Good. Give it a go!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Latest Looper trailer offers more action, story

Regular readers know that I'm already pretty psyched to see writer/director Rian Johnson's Looper when it hits theatres this September, and my anticipation has grown another notch after viewing the latest trailer.

We've got more Bruce Willis Vs. Joseph Gordon-Levitt, more of the hotness that is Emily Blunt, more of the story and, yes, more action. Bring on Sept. 28 already, bitches!

For the uninitiated, Gordon-Levitt is an assassin in the present on the hunt for his future self, the one and only Bruno. If that's not enough to get you excited, go find another hobby!

Happy Canada Day to all our homegrown friends and fans! We'll be back in The Basement on Tuesday!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Image, plot deets for Grave Encounters 2

Shawn, myself and The Corner of Terror's Mike S are big fans of the Vicious Brothers' found-footage fright fest Grave Encounters, so suffice to say we're looking forward to what the duo of Colin and Stuart come up with for the follow up.

Well, we've got a still (above) and an expanded synopsis for the film (below) by way of Arrow in the Head for you Basement Dwellers today. And it sounds like the brothers are sticking with the meta approach to the sequel we mentioned here on the site earlier this year.

While researching the events of the original film and the subsequent disappearance of its lead, Sean Rogerson, film student Alex Wright receives a bizarre video from a mysterious blogger named DeathAwaits666 that shows Rogerson alive and trapped inside the Collingwood Psychiatric Hospital from Grave Encounters. Alex and his friends agree to meet the blogger at the infamous hospital in hopes of learning what really happened and quickly find themselves face-to-face with unspeakable evil. Realizing that they must be smarter and faster than Rogerson and his crew to avoid suffering the same fate, they use their knowledge of the original film to do whatever it takes to survive. 

Sounds like fun to me!

John Poloquin directs Grave Encounters 2, which hits VOD on Oct. 2 with a theatrical release to follow. I think I can safely say that we in The Basement are looking forward to this one!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Jessica Biel front and centre in The Tall Man poster

And we don't think that's a bad thing at all, given Ms. Biel's loveliness and all.

We first told you about Biel's upcoming horror film The Tall Man waaaayyy back in September 2010 when the film was prepping to shoot in Nelson, B.C. Now said movie has been picked up by Image Entertainment and will be released on Aug. 31. Cool, I say.

Directed by Martyr's Pascal Laugier, The Tall Man features Biel as a mother who tries to unravel the mystery of the titular legend after her child goes missing. It seems the entity is a being that likes to abduct children.

The folks over at Bloody Disgusting have scored the official poster for The Tall Man, and we've "borrowed" it all Christmas present like for your eye holes and posted it below. Enjoy! We look forward to reviewing the film for your ear holes in Season Four.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Urban legend flick Munger Road gets a September release

It's been almost a year since we told you about director Nicholas Smith's urban legend/horror tale Munger Road. At that time, the flick was set to unravel in cinemas last Sept. 30 but then poof . . . nada.

Well, we learned today courtesy of our friends at Arrow in the Head that the film will unravel on DVD, digital download and Video On Demand this September -- Sept. 11 to be exact --  care of Freestyle Digital Media. Sounds like something we'll be catching early into Season Four.

The film follows two police officers as they pursue a killer on the same night four teenagers disappear while investigating the legend of Munger Road. We've included the trailer below for your eye holes.

As for the story of Munger Road: years ago a school bus filled with children stalled at a railway crossing on Munger Road. Sadly, a train slammed into the bus, killing everyone on board. According to the legend, if someone dusts powder on a vehicle's back window, stops on the same set of tracks and shifts into neutral, hands will appear on the window as if the spirits of the dead are trying to push the vehicle off of the tracks.

Tyler Perry action hero? The Alex Cross trailer

I've never read James Patterson's Alex Cross books, but I am familiar with the previous film adaptations in the series, Kiss the Girls and Along Came A Spider starring Morgan Freeman.

Given that Girls and Spider came on the heels of Freeman's success with Se7en, it made sense that those films would focus on the serial killer/profiler aspect of the Cross books. The preview for Alex Cross below looks like a big-scale action movie. Again, I have no idea if that's what the novel, Cross, is like or not, but the trailer looks kinda badass.

After Washington DC detective Alex Cross is told that a family member has been murdered, he vows to track down the killer. He soon discovers that she was not his first victim and that things are not what they seem.

Tyler Perry, best known for his Madea movies, plays Cross. The bad guy here is Matthew Fox of Lost fame, and he is barely recognizable in the roll. The directing duties have been handed to Rob Cohen, who is no stranger to action with The Fast and the Furious and XXX.

This could be good, or it could be complete pap. We'll know more when Alex Cross opens on Oct. 19.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Halloween 4 and Halloween 5 hit Blu-Ray this summer

For those of you who like to watch movies the old-school way at home, two of the more notorious entries in my favourite horror series are scheduled to hit in high definition on Aug. 28 care of Anchor Bay Home Entertainment.

And true to all that's awesome about Blu-Ray, Halloween: The Return of Michael Myers and Halloween: The Revenge of Michael Myers are loaded with extras on top of glorious digital transfers. These aren't the best of the series, but they are certainly worth the watch.

Scope out the specs below, and keep your credit card ready; these are a must own for any Halloween completest.

Halloween 4:He had maimed 16 people to get to his sister. He was shot and incinerated, but still the entity that Dr. Sam Loomis (the legendary Donald Pleasence) calls “Evil on two legs” would not die. Tonight, Michael Myers has come home again…to kill! This time, Michael returns to Haddonfield for Jamie Lloyd (Danielle Harris) – the orphaned daughter of Laurie Strode – and her babysitter Rachel (Ellie Cornell). Can Loomis stop Michael before the unholy slaughter reaches his innocent young niece?

Bonus Features: Deleted & Alternate Scenes (30 minutes of NEW scenes!), Audio Commentary with Director Dwight H. Little and Author Justin Beahm (NEW), Audio Commentary with Actors Ellie Cornell and Danielle Harris, Audio Commentary with Writer Alan B. McElroy, Halloween 4/5 Discussion Panel, and Theatrical Trailer

Halloween 5:Michael Myers survived the mine explosion thought to have killed him. One year later, his traumatized young niece Jamie is horrified to discover she has a telepathic bond with her evil Uncle…and that Uncle Michael is on his way back to Haddonfield. But Dr. Loomis has a new plan to destroy The Boogey Man in his childhood home using Jamie as bait. With enhanced gore and effects, vengeance has never looked so gruesome!

Bonus Features: Audio Commentary with Director Dominique Othenin-Girard and actors Danielle Harris and Jeffrey Landman; Audio Commentary with Actor Don Shanks and Author Justin Beahm (NEW); Halloween 5: Orginal Promo (NEW) and Halloween 5: On Set Footage (NEW – 17 mins. of raw footage)

Dude no one has heard of to star in Paranormal Activity 4

It's late June, which means there's a scant four months to go until Halloween. And with Halloween comes the promise of a new Paranormal Activity movie.

Given that the micro-budget franchise has pulled in half a billion dollars worldwide, it should come as no surprise that another PA installment is headed our way. These movies are ultra cheap and quick to shoot and they make money. That's a dream gig for Hollywood.

How this movie fits into the canon remains to be seen. The second film took place parallel to the first and the third was a prequel. Will this be a sequel to the prequel? Or carry on after the first movie? All we know is Katie, Kristi and Toby the Ghost will be back Oct. 19.

Today news broke that Matt Shively (above pic) is in talks to join cast as Alex. No idea who Alex is or how he fits into the story. But there will be some guy named Alex in the movie. As for Shively, he's been in something called April Apocalypse, which we haven't heard of.

Stay tuned for more. We're just glad that the presence of Katie all be insures Katie Featherston (below pic) and her boobs will make an appearance. That's right, Shawn and I are THAT guy!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

R-rated puppet mystery The Happytime Murders hits in 2013

Best known for The Muppet Show, The Dark Crystal and a variety of other kid-orientated puppet entertainment, the Jim Henson Company is looking to make puppets cool again . . . for adults.

Directed by Brian Henson, The Happytime Murders is a thriller set in a world where adults and puppets co-exist. When the cast of the 80s-children's show The Happytime Gang starts turning up dead, it's up to a disgraced -- and alcoholic -- LAPD detective-turned-puppet-private-eye to solve the crime.

According to Bloody Disgusting, the film will be hard R, with sex, violence and murder. Sounds like my kind of puppet movie! Hottie Katherine Heigle (above), who is no stranger to killer puppets after starring in The Bride of Chucky, is among the human cast.

No release date has been set, but this sounds like one to keep an eye on. Below is some concept art from the film.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Chucky will kill again in Child's Play 6

A quick hit of horror news today that can't be ignored: a new Child's Play movie is in the works. Excited? We thought so.

Turns out Don Mancini, who penned the quite good 1988 original, is back on board to write and direct The Curse of Chucky, with the film scheduled to shoot in Winnipeg this fall. And, according to Movie Hole, the script abandons the comedy aspects of the last several movies and aims to make Chucky scary again. Sound impossible? Revisit the first one. It's a pretty serious stab at a killer-doll movie.

The latest installment finds the possessed doll wreaking havoc on a family that has gathered for a funeral. But don't expect to find The Curse of Chucky in theatres; this one is scheduled to go direct to DVD. Brad Dourif returns as the voice of Chucky.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Man becomes machine in The Prototype

Sci-fi/action movies about killer robots are nothing new, nor are ones that explore the theme of man's relationship with machines. The Terminator and Robocop films are just the tip of the iceberg on the subject.

With that in mind, writer/director Andrew Will's The Prototype doesn't mine much new ground: humanoid military robot escapes top-secret facility and is hunted by the government. But the footage below is mighty impressive, suggesting a hybrid of District 9 and The Bourne Identity. There's also a nice balance of philosophy and action, all on a rumoured $40-million budget.

The Bandito Brothers flick stars Neal McDonough, Joseph Mawle and Anna Anissimova. No word on when The Prototype hits theatres, but it's scheduled for release some time in 2013. The Basement is going to keep its collective eyes open for this bad boy!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

The wait is over: the Taken 2 trailer is here!

Can I get a fuck yeah!?! Good! Nicely done.

After months of speculation, scant photos and a few plot details here and there, we finally have a look at the sequel to a movie everyone but Matt Bellamy liked -- Taken. And Taken 2 looks bad ass!!

The plot? In Istanbul, retired CIA operative Bryan Mills and his wife are taken hostage by the father of a kidnapper Mills killed while rescuing his daughter. The result? Neeson beating the living hell out of everyone who pisses him off. That's all I need!

But enough of me blathering on, watch this mother and enjoy! Taken 2 opens Oct. 5.

A first look at Dredd

That's Judge Dredd to you, comic fanboys! And this looks like it's a huge departure from the overblown, yet still entertaining in a bad sort of way, Stallone vehicle from the mid-90s.

For one, this is going to be hard-R. Two, It doesn't look like Dredd's taking his helmet off, which is true to the British 2000AD source material. And there's no Rob Schneider to be found anywhere, praise Jebus. Based on the below trailer, this is a simple story of cops versus drug dealers, only set in the future. That's all I need, thank you!

In a violent city where the police have the authority to act as judge, jury and executioner, a cop, Dredd, teams with a trainee to take down a gang that deals the reality-altering drug, SLO-MO.

Dredd hits theatres Sept. 21, and will cost you three extra dollars to watch. Despite that, I am keen to see this one.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Get ready for a non-reboot Reboot

No, the upcoming cyberpunk thriller Reboot isn't a re-imagining of the classic 90s animated series of the same name. Instead, writer/director Joe Kawasaki has gone the -- gasp -- original route and crafted a short film about the convergence of humanity and technology.

In contemporary Los Angeles, a young female hacker named Stat (Emily Somers) awakens to find an iPhone glued to her hand and a mysterious countdown ticking away on the display. Suffering from head trauma, and with little recollection of who she is or what is happening, Stat races against time to figure out what the code means, and what unknown event the pending zero-hour will bring.

We're gonna chat with the folks behind Reboot this fall, which is when the film is expected to start screening around the globe. There's also a sneak peek scheduled for next month at the hacker conference DEF CON. Until then, scope out the trailer below and keep tabs on the film via its official website, Twitter and Facebook page! Also, you can play the Reboot ARG game by following this link!

Yup, these guys got it going on!

Reboot Trailer from Joe Kawasaki on Vimeo.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Shawn takes on Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows

It's cool that Downey Jr is so flexible.  I'm glad I didn't spend the whole movie wondering: "When is he going to put on his Iron Man suit?"

I was easily immersed in this movie.  It felt good, looked good, sounded good and had a great story behind it.

The neat thing, behind a movie like this, is that there are many tales that can continue to be told.  It's Sherlock Holmes!  Not uber exciting books, in my opinion, but filled with different mysteries.(not like I've actually read a book)

This did look pretty exciting on screen.  With that said, I did feel a little force fed.  It's as though the movie industry knows I would never watch it if it didn't have a 20th century spin on it.  IE: Bullet time, slow mo action scenes, awesome fight scenes...etc.(But here is a secret:  I would)

HEY! IS that the girl with the terrible titties?!  Yes it is!
I think she deserved far more responsibility in this movie.
Where I hated the Dragon Tattoo movies, she is still a great actress.  Sad they didn't use her a bit more here.

Take away the "flashyness" of this film, and it still would have been alright to watch.  I don't need to be force fed that much eye candy.  It almost detracted from the era the film was supposed to be set in.

I also wasn't as skirt blown by this one, as I was for the first one. It is definitely worth the watch.  But I likely won't watch it again, so gotta go with the Bad.

Jason reviews High Tension

The last of three movies I watched while holed up alone at a cabin in the woods, but certainly not the least. I hadn't screened High Tension, AKA Haute Tension to my Francophone friends, in about seven years, so it was nice hitting it from an almost fresh perspective.

Two college friends, Marie and Alexa, encounter loads of trouble while on vacation at Alexa's parents' country home when a mysterious, and brutally effective, killer knocks on the front door. 

Or at least that's the official synopsis as there's one fuck of a twist that would make M. Night Shyamalan jealous he hadn't thought of it first.

First off, this movie's still got it, and by got it I mean blood, gore and suspense. This is a throwback to the grindhouse horror movies of the 70s: grim, gory and downright nasty at times. The flick doesn't compromise in its razor-straight simplicity. But that's also what makes it so effective.

And, for reasons I'm still not sure of, it's fun. Not ha-ha fun, but a good time nonetheless. I can't say the same about Saw, Hostel or all those other torture porn movies, but I had a blast with High Tension, and could watch it multiple times without hesitation. 

As for the twist, some people will get it, some will be pissed right the fuck off. I got it, and enjoyed picking up all the tells with this second viewing. Maybe that's part of why I like it so much. Kudos to writer/director Alexandre Aja for crafting such an effective little horror thriller. 

This rates a Good, in case you hadn't guessed that by now.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Jason reviews Prometheus

Hands down one of the most anticipated films to come down the pike in years, and I'm pleased to say Prometheus doesn't disappoint, at least for the most part.

For the record, a team of explorers discover a clue to the origins of mankind, leading them on a journey to the darkest corners of the universe. Once there, they find more than they bargain for and engage in a desperate fight to save the future of the human race. 

I'll answer one question right out the gate: yes, this is an Alien prequel. But don't go in expecting everyone's favourite space bug to be the main antagonist (don't worry, they do make a brief appearance, and it's awesome). Prometheus can also be taken as a standalone film, and is satisfying on that count.

Other critics have already said it, and I'll say it again here, there is no way Prometheus can meet expectations. It leaves as many questions unanswered as it does answer, and the stage is set for a whole new run of films should 20th Century Fox desire. This will frustrate those who expected everything to be handed to them on a silver platter.

But it is a damn good movie, and it respects the audience's intelligence, which is more than I can say of most Hollywood blockbusters. So yes, you gotta think a bit to enjoy this one, Basement Dwellers. And you'll get some shots of adrenalin along the way. Being a Ridley Scott movie, everything looks great, so no worries there. There's some action, some scares and a whole bunch of eye-popping visuals.

I have to agree with The Arrow, taken as an Alien film, this comes in third after Alien and Aliens. I wasn't as initially let down by Prometheus as I was with Alien 3 and Alien Resurrection, and I will see it again. A Good from me.

Jason reviews The Grey

More than just an adventure film, Joe Carnahan's The Grey is a study on the bond between men, life, and the things that are most important to us. Great, I took a surprisingly thrilling man-versus-nature story and made it sound boring. Well done, Jay!

After their plane crashes in Alaska, six oil workers are led to survival by a skilled huntsman, but a pack of merciless wolves haunts their every step. Fortunately for the men, they have current reigning bad ass Liam Neeson as said huntsman, and he knows a thing or two about wolves.

I didn't dig The Grey as much as I thought I would. It's decent, don't get me wrong, with some seriously intense sequences. The wolf attacks play like Jaws on land, with one freaky and violent encounter after another. There's also one particularly exciting attempt to escape off the side of a cliff that had my heart in my throat. 

Too bad the stuff in between gets stale before the movie plays out. I like drama and philosophy, and dig character beats, but there's too much of that. Maybe, if the film had been trimmed, these scenes wouldn't have felt so repetitive. They slow an otherwise exciting flick down.

Don't get me wrong; this is a good movie. But it's one I won't visit again. A Bad for The Grey from me.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Five movies my dad showed me that changed my world

Jason here. It's Father's Day, my first as a dad (woot!), and in honour of The Man Who Taught Me Everything There Is To Know About Being A Man, I thought I'd pay him homage be celebrating one of the many loves he instilled in me at a young age -- a love of film.

Dad has been dead 21 years now, more than half my life, but his love of movies lives on. He was a big guy, a contractor, and he loved his hockey. But he enjoyed film as well. Some of my favourite memories of him are the times we went to the movies. If he hadn't introduced me to the films below, I wouldn't have become a student of film and this site/show/podcast probably wouldn't exist.

So Happy Father's Day to my dad and all the other dads out there. Make it a good one!

Star Wars: My dad saw this with my mom in Hawaii before he took me to it, and called it the best Western ever made. You guessed it, Han Solo was the man to him. I remember seeing it at a local drive-in. We sat in the cab of his truck, enjoyed popcorn and let the mind-blowing spectacle take us away. Star Wars is one of the few movies my dad watched more than once, and it remained a favourite of his until the day he died. It's still a favourite of mine, Lucas and his tinkering be damned.

A Fistful of Dollars: Sure, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly is a better film, but I clearly remember catching this on TV one Sunday afternoon with dad. Mom maintained it was too violent for my young eyes at the time, but neither dad nor I cared. This was a new form of bliss. Clint Eastwood is one of the few actors my dad was on a first-name basis with, even though they'd never met. Westerns were my dad's favourite genre and, revisiting this movie from time to time, it's not hard to understand why. And trust me, no one laughed at dad's mule.

Commando: The first Schwarzenegger movie I ever saw in a theatre. Not his best, but damn did this movie ever stick with me. Uber violent, funny as hell and, to my 13-year-old mind, the greatest thing ever put on celluloid. From that moment forward, dad referred to Ah-nuld as The Wimp, because dad teased people he liked and respected. We caught almost every Schwarzenegger movie that came after, but this was the first, and remains a favourite to this day.

Any James Bond movie: I think my dad secretly wanted to be James Bond. I have no proof of that, but it's a gut feeling. I grew up in the Roger Moore era, but because Connery was my dad's favourite, he remains my preferred Bond as well. I think that's why I dig Daniel Craig too, as he harkens back to Connery's hard edge. Dad believe Moore was too soft, too tongue in cheek. I have to agree. Whenever a Bond film came on TV, it was a family event. I miss those Saturday nights.

The Beast Must Die: My first horror film. A Sunday matinee. Cheesy by today's standards, but scared the shit out of me. For two weeks after I was convinced a werewolf lived under my bed. Dad caught hell from mom for letting me watch it. His reasoning, "He's going to watch something like this sooner or later. Might as well be sooner." A life lesson, one I still employ today. And a love of horror movies was born.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Jason reviews 21 Jump Street

First off, never seen the TV series from which this is based, so I bring no baggage to the table that way. Not that a comedic spin on a late-80s cop show should warrant expectations beyond a few laughs and a breezy 90-minute running time.

Yes, the first 20 minutes of 21 Jump Street are fucking funny. And stars Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum have a natural chemistry and comedic timing. Ditto Ice Cube, who almost steals the show as the man in charge of Jump Street. He's black, he's worked his ass off to be captain, and sometimes he gets mad. Represent!

Unfortunately, the rest of the flick doesn't hold up. There are laughs dispersed throughout the remaining 60 or so minutes, but, as is often the case with mainstream comedies, 21 Jump Street ends up taking itself too seriously. And the violence, which gets rough and bloody at times, is out of place given the film's otherwise lighthearted tone. One exception: a rather amusing car chase through L.A. See if you can guess which vehicle blows up.

I gotta give this a Bad. I liked it once, but that's it. Keep your eye holes peeled for a cameo by the series's original star, Johnny Depp.

Anthony Michael Bosa reviews Prometheus

You remember frequent Basement guest Anthony Michael Bosa? Of course you do! Guess what? He's seen Prometheus, and has been agreeable enough to share his thoughts! Read on!

If you go into this movie in any way expecting to see ALIENS you will be extremely disappointed. You need to go in and expect to see a movie based in the same universe as the ALIEN films. Once you can accomplish this you will enjoy what you are watching. This movie gives you glimpses of how the Alien came about and it's ability to destroy worlds. You will also see how other beings try to mess with biological warfare and it never turns out well for anyone. Characters are OK. Enemies are OK. The SPACE JOCKEY, now called, "ENGINEERS" are pretty bad ass. The big question is, if you plan to go into space and find human kinds beginning, wouldn't you bring some bad ass soldiers along with you? Wouldn't you bring a spaceship with some awesome firepower? I mean, even Kirk brought red shirts with him. I'm just saying..... I give it a Bad.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Beware . . . The Month From Hell!

When a movie promotes itself as the scariest of 2012, Basement Dwellers like Shawn and I take notice. Which is why it became our mission to land an interview with someone involved in the upcoming horror film Six Degrees of Hell.

Six Degrees has been featured on the site before, and we even had a story promoted on one of the actor's *Cough . . . Corey Feldman . . .Cough* official web page. The premise of director Joe Raffa and writer Harrison Smith's film has promise: Feldman is Kyle Brenner, a paranormal investigator retracing the steps of a friend and associate who has gone among the missing against the backdrop of horrific events at a creepy hotel.

Check this, today we interviewed Raffa, Smith and stars Nicole Cinaglia and Brian Gallagher and have one more interview scheduled at the end of August. All of these will be rolled out when the show returns in October, just in time for Six Degrees of Hell's release. So it's only fitting that October will be The Month From Hell in The Basement!

Stick with us!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Jason reviews Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

More of the same from director Guy Ritchie and stars Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law, which means if you dug the 2009 Sherlock Holmes, then you'll dig this one too. The first film is one I enjoy more and more with each viewing, and I expect the same will be the case here.

What I admire most about A Game of Shadows is that it doesn't just up the action and spectacle, but also the scenes of deduction and reasoning that are the Holmes trademark. Equally great is seeing Holmes match wits with his arch-rival, Prof. Moriarty. Played by Jared Harris, Moriarty is more than an equal for Holmes and Downy Jr. In fact, the film's most exciting scene is a chess match between the two. It's two great actors playing two great characters in a battle of wits.

As for the action, there's lots of it and it's all done well. This is not surprising given that it's a Hollywood blockbuster. I especially liked a chase through the woods punctuated by mortar fire. There's no need for Ritchie to shoot it as he does, but it sure as fuck looks cool!

This is a solid sequel and a nice continuation of the Holmes canon for a new audience. Downey Jr. and Law still have a nice chemistry and it was good to see Rachel McAdams return for a few scenes. The one weak link is the original Girl With the Terrible Titties, Noomi Rapace. She's a great actress given nothing to do here. Too bad.

It should come as no surprise that this gets a Good. I look forward to seeing it again. Bring on a third!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Gone Fishing 3: Vacation Harder

Loyal and long-term Basement Dwellers know Shawn and I hold down day jobs. The Basement, at least for now, is just a passion project that allows us to escape the daily grind. But day jobs do come with a perk: paid vacation time!

Starting today at 7 p.m. PST I am on 23 glorious days off. Shawn's holiday time looms. That means time out of the city: fishing, camping, cabining, kayaking, beering. You know the drill.

Which means updates to this site will likely become a little more sporadic during the next couple of months. But we'll update as often as we can. Given that this site was updated 345 out of 365 days last year, we should be able to post stories, reviews, trailers and geek news with relative frequency this summer.

We just didn't want you thinking you aren't appreciate in The Basement. We love you all individually and as a group. And we'll be updating at least six times a week again in September, with Season Four kicking off the first week of October.

Stick with us! And enjoy this preview for my favourite movie from the summer of 1986!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Ruh-roh! Scooby Doo goes dark in Saturday Morning Massacre

Ever wonder what would happen if Scooby Doo and the gang were taken out of Saturday morning cartoons and dumped in the real world? Well, that's the premise behind director Spencer Parsons's upcoming horror parody Saturday Morning Massacre.

The film follows four ghosts hunters who travel the country in a vintage van with their canine companion and investigate the paranormal. Sound Familiar? They get far more than they bargained for when they take on an old mansion with a twisted past.

If done right, this could be a lot of fun. And the trailer below certainly holds promise. Saturday Morning Massacre is an official selection at this weekend's Los Angeles Film Festival, so our L.A.-based Basement Dwellers might want to check it out and let us know your thoughts.

No word yet on a theatrical release, but we'll keep you updated. Until then, here's the trailer for your eye holes.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Because we gotta, the Django Unchained trailer

About a week or so ago we showed you some pics from Quentin Tarantino's upcoming crack at the old west, Django Unchained. Now we've got the first ever trailer, right here in The Basement.

I'm totally psyched to see how Tarantino brings his trademark dialogue, humour and gritty violence to this genre. The western has long been considered dead and buried by Hollywood, but if anyone can breathe new life into it, Tarantino can.

This is a great trailer, only hinting at what's to come I'm sure. The use of music is brilliant, some of the lines pretty damn funny, and everyone looks to be having a great time. We'll know more when the movie opens this Christmas.

The film follows Django (Jamie Foxx), a freed slave who treks across America with Dr. King Schultz (Christoph Waltz), a German dentist turned bounty hunter. Together, they try to retrieve Django's wife Broomhilda from the charming but sadistic plantation owner Calvin Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his band of ruthless slavers.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Trailer Rewind: Die Hard

Today marks the launch of a new feature in The Basement, one dedicated to something I love and Shawn has retired from watching . . . movie trailers!

To me trailers -- AKA previews -- are an art unto themselves. There should be an Academy Award for best trailer. They are the perfect way to sell a movie, and almost always sell them wrong. Almost. How many trailers have you watched that made the movie look cool? And how often did the movie suck? Case closed.

What we'll do is feature a film, share thoughts on the trailer, then give a brief synopsis of how the movie held up. This way we can put our theory that the trailer is often better than the movie to the test.

Die Hard

The Trailer: Yipee ki yay, motherfucker! They don't make 'em like this anymore. From the 80s synthesizer music to the reliance on exposition from Trailer Guy, this is a product of an era long past. We get a lot of the one liners, tons of explosions and the promise of a thrill ride. And you gotta love the line "He's an easy guy to like, and hard man to kill."

The Movie: Adjusted for inflation, this is still a decent, if not dated, trailer. Viewed in the era it came out? It owned. But as good as this trailer was back in 1988, even it couldn't hint at the classic Die Hard would become. This is one of the best movies of the 80s and one of the greatest action films ever made. It's also one my Top 10 all-time favourites. And it made The Bruce into The Bruce. One of those rare cases where the movie exceeded expectations.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Horror and romance collide in Mischief Night

What if Michael Myers or Jason Voorhees developed the hots for the hot girls they were trying to kill? I kinda sorta think that's what's being alluded to in the below trailer for Mischief Night.

Written and directed by Travis Baker, this indie horror film takes the stereotypical story of a teenage babysitter stalked by a masked killer and turns it on its ear, with killer and victim developing romantic feelings for each other.

Shawn and I aren't big on romance, so Mischief Night -- that's the night before Halloween to you -- has a tough road to slog. But . . . and this is a heavy but . . . if Baker can deliver the goods and keep the romance dark and disturbing, this could work. Plus he's got Malcolm McDowell playing a character named Dr. Smiles, so maybe this will have a sense of humour too.

Besides, who doesn't like a Halloween-themed scary movie?

No word yet on when Mischief Night will hit theatres. As always, Basement Dwellers, we'll keep you posted.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Jason reviews Spiderhole

Shawn and I opted to sit down tonight and just watch a flick for shits and giggles with no intention of putting together a review for the site. But I am compelled to write this as a warning to Basement Dwellers everywhere: don't watch this British export! Don't! This is a study in bad. Which sucks as the idea -- a group of London squaters are trapped in an abandoned home with a malevolent force -- has potential. But the end result is not scary, gruesome or shocking. It's just stupid, with plot holes big enough to drive an aircraft carrier through. You know what, take a couple of trained dudes like Shawn and I and lock us in a house, we're going through a wall to get out. Rather a few splinters and broken bones than suffer through what the protagonists in this flick do. And I'm sorry, but an old geezer with knockout gas just isn't a scary villain. Spiderhole -- why'd they call it that by the way? -- is lame and, worst of all, boring. An Ugly from me. Waste not you time.

Jason and Shawn review Mother's Day (2012)

Mother's Day

Jason: I haven't watched the original Mother's Day, so I have no idea how this compares to that alleged classic but, on it's own, it's not bad. I enjoyed it a lot more than I thought I would anyway, given I'm not into the whole brutality-for-brutality-sake thing. Most of this movie's strength can be found in the performances. All of the villains are great, especially Rebecca De Mornay, who gives a solid -- if not a little one note -- performance. I hated all of the victims save for Shawn Ashmore. For a group of friends they sure turn on each other quickly. I liked a lot of this, but I won't watch it again. It was too long, too overwrought at times, and very mean spirited. If I want to watch a hard-nosed home-invasion movie again, I'm catching Kidnapped.

Shawn: Here we have a movie that slipped below the radar. There are a few reasons for that, I’m sure. I haven’t seen Rebecca De Mornay in anything in a long long time. The movie was interesting, had some decent violence, and some really decent acting in parts. My biggest problem with this movie, though, is …De Mornay. I think she was poorly cast. It was really hard to believe her character. Perhaps I was trying to compare her to the original Mother’s Day mother. Ha ha. Even though De Mornay was haggard enough. Her lines seemed forced as well and , for me, this really detracted from the movie. I’m going to give this a Bad.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Jason reviews The Pact (2012)

I'm having a hard time writing this review. It's not that didn't like The Pact -- because I really did. It's important to note that right out the gate. In a way, Nicholas McCarthy's tale is reminiscent of Absentia in that you go in expecting one thing, but end up with something completely different. Yet horror fans will get everything they want out from this movie. It's unsettling, atmospheric and even has a few genuine shorts shitting moments. Leading lady Caity Lotz is just awesome on the eyes and she can act. We even see Casper Van Dien get a knife to the throat (spoiler alert). This is a creepy fucking movie and McCarthy is a talented filmmaker. I think what's thrown me is that I ended up watching something a little different, and that's not what I expected. Originality is so rare in movies these days, even the ones we love to watch in The Basement. This is a Good, hands down. One of our diamonds in the rough!

Next on the chopping block: Mother's Day (2012)

Remember when Rebecca De Mornay was all that? Back in the 80s she starred in respectable hits like Risky Business and Runaway Train before taking a turn for the crazy in The Hand That Rocks the Cradle. Then poof -- off the radar.

Well, De Mornay is back in a big way with Darren Lynn Bousman's much touted, and much delayed we might add, Mother's Day remake. It's pretty much a remake no one asked for (wait, all remakes are like that) but it received generally favourable reviews on the festival circuit, especially for De Mornay's performance and the gobs of uncompromising violence.

Now Mother's Day has found its way into The Basement just in time for Father's Day. Ha! Didn't see that one coming did you!?! And Jason and Shawn are more than willing to put it on the chopping block. Does the film live up to its hype, or do our Basement Dwellers find good reason for it to have languished in distribution hell? You'll find out when the June Special goes live at 7 a.m. PST tomorrow!

Our special episodes are stripped down versions of the radio show. Just a review and some lively banter. We'll be back in The Basement and back on 92.5FM CFBX Kamloops in October for all new episodes with season four. Stick with us!

Retro Review: The Car (1977)