8 it a great day for movie reviews? Sorry. I doubt you've seen any of these movies; except I'm pretty sure Tony Laplume has seen one. Basically I'm past the bottom of the barrel at this point, to like 10 feet below the barrel. Too bad for you.
A Night in Old Mexico: Robert Duvall is an old rancher who's lost his land and decides to visit Mexico for one last wild night. His estranged grandson tags along. Things are complicated when they give a ride to a couple of guys who stole money from a drug dealer. The dealers of course want that money back, so mayhem ensues. It's not quite as dark as "No Country for Old Men." Duvall is funny as the cantankerous old cowboy; at this point every movie he does might be the last one, so enjoy the legend while you still can. (3/5)
Grand Piano: A pianist (Elijah Wood) returns to the stage after a nervous breakdown five years earlier. As he starts to play, he finds someone has threatened to kill him if he plays one wrong note. But while first it seems the nut job (John Cusack) just wants him to play the piano really well, it turns out there's an implausible "Die Hard"-esque scheme going on. For the most part this was good; they do what they can with the claustrophobic setting of being on a stage performing on a piano. And it also reminded us that Alex Winter (aka Bill S Preston, Esquire) still exists, though the years have not been kind to him. (3/5)
The Recruit: This is one of those I probably would have watched sooner but never got around to it. Basically Colin Farrell is recruited by Al Pacino to join the CIA. And then is given the job to spy on the hot chick in his class. But there are some twists that are kind of obvious. Though I liked at the end when they put a twist on the old "bad guy incriminates himself talking into a hot mic" cliche. I really, really hate that cliche so I would have marked the movie down if that had been what actually happened. I still don't have Tony Laplume's love of Colin Farrell and Al Pacino is basically every Al Pacino character since like 1980. Overall though it's a decent enough thriller. (3/5)
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel: This is one of those I heard people saying was good a year or two ago, sort of like Grand Budapest Hotel this year. But I didn't get around to watching it until now. Basically a bunch of old Brits go to India to the titular hotel that is of course a dump. Some of them learn something, some don't, and one dies--probably not the one you'd expect. It gets to feel a little too long, but there are some funny parts amidst the drama. (3.5/5)
Veronica Mars: I never watched the TV show, but that doesn't matter so much as there's a prologue to catch you up on it. But maybe if I had watched the show I might have given a shit. It never really rises above the level of a TV movie mystery. You know in the end she's going to find the bad guy and he/she/they will confess. In this case when an old friend of Veronica's is framed for murder she has to leave her successful new life in New York to help him out. Bet you can't guess how that will work out. Oh, right, you can because as I said it's a TV movie mystery, like those old Columbo movies and such. Except thanks to that Kickstarter campaign getting this in theaters, it can use the f-word and gets a gratuitous James Franco cameo. But you have to think fans were hoping for something a little less dull. I guess when you donate to Kickstarter campaigns, be careful what you wish for. If you do want a hint to the end think I Know What You Did Last Summer meets Natalie Wood's death. (2/5)
Hot Blood Sundae: This movie starts by answering the age-old question: can you stab a bimbo to death with a waffle cone? Common sense says no, but common sense is not much on display with this movie. Basically a guy decides to open the ice cream version of Hooters. And then the bimbos start being hacked to pieces by a guy in a Scream ghost killer costume only with a bucket over his head. The whole thing looked as if it cost $1000 to make and so little of it made sense. Like, what kind of ice cream shop has a locker room and showers? But to go all Andrew Leon on this, there's a writing lesson here: when writing a slasher story, you need more than a collection of bimbos; you have to have that one goody-goody virginal main character people can root for. Otherwise, who gives a fuck? Basically not even all the nudity and gratuitous whipped cream fights can save a completely idiotic movie. (1/5)
The Black Knight Returns: This is about as low-budget as any fan film. It reminds me a little of the Scarlet Knight series as it was first conceived in that there's a secret society of knights from Arthurian times who protect the world. There's something about bad guys and some toxin..then I fell asleep. I doubt I missed much except really badly choreographed fight scenes. (Inc.)