Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Movie reviews - Charlie and the Devil's Rejects

Better late than never I guess.

A lot of you have already seen Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I just saw it last night and I didn't like it that much. Granted, I have high expectations for Tim Burton, Johnny Depp, and Danny Elfman. Burton (director) and Elfman (composer) are the masters of American fantasy. I've liked everything they've done together except for that headless horseman movie where Depp and Christina Ricci just didn't have any chemistry together.

So going into the movie with expectations, for one thing, this was one of Elfman's weaker movies musically. I didn't like music at all. I didn't like the Oompa Lumpa songs and it really bothered me that there was just one Oompa Lumpa.

Depp played an aloof character. He didn't seem to have his heart into it. It was as if he was just trying to get it over with as he thought about his upcoming role in the next Pirates of the Caribbean movie, which I can't wait to see.

And Burton, who has always produced wonderful sets, didn't shine. They weren't bad. They just weren't that impressive compared to what Burton usually does.

I didn't have a bad time. I liked it, sort of. 5 dead zombies.

I don't know who I would recommend The Devil's Rejects to. It was a sick movie, totally exploitative, like those really bad 70s movies. But Rob Zombie did a wonderful job at it.

This movie showed that Zombie could direct a movie without relying on his own musical talents. He used a wonderful 70s soundtrack, including a real good use of Free Bird.

You're not supposed to like the characters. The main characters are psychotic killers and the Sheriff out to get them is no better than they are as a person. He hires bounty hunters who kill hookers without mercy to get to the psycho family.

Before watching the movie, I read an interview with Rob Zombie and a few of the actors in I think it was Fangoria magazine. Zombie really wanted to make the movie over the top. His argument was that when you have planes flying into buildings, you have to make the movie world worse than the real world, to make the real world liveable. Going into the movie, I understood what he was trying to do completely.

For the record, this movie should have had an X rating. It was way too violent to bring the kiddies. Junior won't see it until he's 18. I'd rather he see a porno than this, seriously. But for film buffs who have seen the 70s exploitation films, I'd highly recommend this one. 8 dead zombies.


Blogger exMI said...

DEvils rejects has been on my wait for the DVD list. Is it worth seeing in a theater? Is it better than House of 1000 Corpses?

8/10/2005 9:43 AM  
Anonymous Michele said...

Ha! I thought you were teasing the Oompa Loompa's and calling them "Devil's Rejects", changing the name of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory to "Charlie and the Devil's Rejects" For some reason it cracked me up.
You know, I don't love Roald Dahl stuff. I read Levi a lot of his books when he was a kid, then when he died a few years ago, I read his obituary and saw why I found his books slightly unsettling. He wanted kids to distrust adults, and be set them up to be suspicious and bitter by making most of the adult characters evil in his stories. Sad.
Have you ever read any of Joe Bob Biggs, who used to review B-Rate Drive-In movies in the Pinkie of the SF Chronicle? Your reviews remind me of his stuff. I used to love it.
It's good your protecting Jr.'s conscience. Just read a disturbing article about how screwed up boys get playing that Grand Theft Auto etc.

8/10/2005 9:59 AM  
Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

Exmi - It was more a "movie" than House of 1000 Corpses. I liked both, but the first one was more an extended music video.

Is it worth seeing in the theatre? Well, do you think that the deserts of Texas are pretty? If so, see it. If not, wait until it comes out on DVD.

Michele - Heh. No, but the Oompa Loompas in this movie were annoying rather than funny. I was totally unaware of the author. Never read the book.

As for Joe Bob Biggs, he used to be on late night showing b-movies and has a kind of down home charisma. The guy's a genuine movie buff, so I thank you for comparing me to him.

8/10/2005 10:10 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

Devil's Rejects is MUCH better than 1,000 corpses, but I don't think you have to see it in the theatre. As long as you have surround sound at home and can crank Free Bird that is ;-)

I liked Charlie a lot. I just thought it was great fun. And I loved the 2001 monolith reference - that made my jaw drop.

8/10/2005 10:43 AM  
Blogger Slade said...

ohhh ZS!!! I disagree with you totally about Charlie!!! I thought it was wonderful! I do think though that it has a certain humor that some people just don't like...the kind of humor that is slightly on the lines of the Life Aquatic, Napolean dynamite, ect...I'm not saying that it is exactly that humor, but it is somewhere close with all the social commentary! I thought the marionets singing and then burning was hilarious...and that Willie Wonka wouldn't call the kids by their names, instead "little girl" I thought it was brilliant

8/10/2005 10:46 AM  
Blogger Slade said...

one more thing: Laura, I nearly wet my pants with laughter at the 2001 reference!!!

8/10/2005 10:47 AM  
Blogger Reverend Dr. Will Trump said...

for some reason, movies in the last 10 years have not interested me ... maybe i need some ritalin so i can watch some ...

8/10/2005 1:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

8/10/2005 2:31 PM  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

spammers suck. Stay away from our blogs!

I totally agree with review of Charlie. The Oompa Loompas were dredful. I'm surprised you haven't heard of the author. He wrote James and the Giant Peach, The BFG, The Twits, Danny Champion of the World (a movie was made for TV based on that one and it was great! Jeremy Irons was in it.) and The Witches (Anjelica Houston is in that one).
You should pick a couple of his books up. He had a great sense of humor.
I'm looking forward to Depp doing Jack Sparrow again, too (sexy!)
who said that?
I'll skip The Devil's Rejects, thanks.

8/10/2005 3:31 PM  
Blogger Kunaxa said...

I haven't seen house of 1000 corpses. I heard it being compared to a 'long' music video before, and I can't sit through ~120 minutes of music video.

Not one that doesn't involve an over-zealous crotch-grabbing Michael Jackson.

8/10/2005 4:06 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

I'm scared of Rob Zombie and I think that The Devil's Rejects should win an award for the worst movie title in Hollywood history. I guess you just have to have a certain taste to like his stuff.

8/10/2005 4:20 PM  
Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

Heather - was it you who posted awhile back about not getting Rob Zombie? Well, maybe he's an acquired taste. Or maybe I'm just weird.

Cultureshocked - Devil's Rejects is better. It's movie, not a long video.

Sadie - yeah, removed that spam. Just to let you know, spammers won't be allowed in my anti-zombie compound. Of those movies, I did see The Witches.

Thom - None? I'm surprised.

Slade - You know what I think it is. For someone I really like, I expect their work to be excellent. I have higher expectations for Burton/Elfman/Depp than I would for some regular bloke.

Laura - We have the DVD player hooked up to a pair Bose speakers and real nice surround sound computer speakers w/subwoofer as well. So definitely looking forward to this one on DVD.

8/10/2005 4:55 PM  
Blogger hutytito said...

I loved Joe Bob Biggs, so I'm looking forward to reading your movie reviews. Right now I'm working my way through your archives.

And I plan to have an upcoming blog post on "Why Johnny Depp is to die for."

8/10/2005 8:15 PM  
Blogger Miranda said...

I figured Charlie and the Chocolate Factory would be disappointing when I realized that, when he was interviewed, Johnny Depp would talk on and on
about what sort of make-up he was wearing, but would say relatively little about acting.

8/10/2005 9:34 PM  
Blogger Jenn said...

I'm waiting on Charlie to watch with my son and Eric.

I won't be watching Devils Rejects. Moreso after your review. Not that it was gonna happen either way. :P

8/11/2005 12:16 AM  
Blogger tenxinchoden said...

man! still donno what you're talkin abt...haven't seen or heard abt the movie...the last one i watched was 'sponge bob square pants movie' know you should watch that one...they go''''Ooooooooooo who lives under the pine apple tree.......' haha....really love that spong

8/11/2005 12:35 AM  
Blogger tshsmom said...

ZS, I'm with Sadie; read the BOOKS!! Our daughter and I LOVE Roald Dahl. Unfortunately, the big brat moved 1100 miles away with ALL the books.
However, our son and step-grandson HATE the books. Maybe it's a girl thing?

8/11/2005 1:41 PM  
Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

Tshsmom - All right. I'll add the books on the queue of "books to read."

Tenxin - Spongebob is cool. It's weird though that it seems to be just as popular with laid off software engineers as with kids. A lot of us started watching this show. I haven't seen the movie yet though.

Jenn - It's all right. I had no idea who this movie would appeal to.

Miranda - yeah, I felt that Depp wasn't really as in to this movie. I love him as an actor too, so it was a letdown.

Southerngirl - Uh oh. Hope I don't have anything too scary in the vaults. ;)
Now that I work right by a $3 movie theatre, I'll be seeing a lot more movies.

8/11/2005 2:01 PM  

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