Review: Necessary Roughness (1991/PG-13)

It’s a football movie no one seems to remember so it’s time to hit the gridiron and review necessary roughness. This is basically a satire of the SMU football scandal of 1987 if you don’t remember, that was when the NCAA handed down the death penalty punishment due to a slush fund and under the table payments to student football players. While SMU shut down for two years, the team in this movie reboots with walk ons. At this point enter actor Scott Bakula from the series Quantum Leap as the star of the movie playing a 34-year-old college freshman. The comedy is while he’s old, he has a great throwing arm and a great leadership of the team, in fact this film feels a lot like the movie Major League only with football instead of baseball. So why was this film forgotten, well one could say that there were other football movies that came out after this such as Rudy, The Waterboy, or Major League II in the baseball realm. It’s not a terrible movie but it’s also a standard sports movie, the whole underdogs, will they win, or overcome thier handicap plot. Honestly we only watched this movie because it was on Netflix it was like “hey this will kill two hours” and in the end that’s what we could recommend, it’ll kill two hours but while it’s not bad, it’s forgettable and that alone is what makes a film a success or a failure more so then the box office.

And starting this review, we are going to provide a link to theatrical trailer if it is available.

Necessary Roughness Trailer (Paramount Pictures/1991) 

On a scale of 1.0 to 5.9 it got a 3.8 out of 5.9

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Review : Cinderella (2015/PG) 

Ahem “spoiler” Cinderella marries the prince, however if your shocked by that ending, stop reading the blog as we’re disappointed in you for not knowing the fairytale or the 1950 film this movie is based on. Your probally already saying to yourself why are we reviewing Cinderella when we did a one scene preview of the film back on January 19th, 2015? Basically we can tell if a movie or tv show is good or bad within the first 90 seconds, but we did feel it was fair to review the whole movie too (especially because it wasn’t written by Michael Ardnt.) Let’s get this out of the way, this is basically Downton (or downtown or what ever the fuck it’s called, we don’t care, all we watch on PBS is Nova, The Red Green Show, and still bitch 3-2-1 Contact isn’t aired anymore) Abbey the motion picture. That means it’s crammed to the gills with that stuffy, dry, tight lipped melowdrama horse shit. As three characters die of mystery illness like most Disney movies. That right there would scream terrible movie alert, but this is where the strength of director Kenneth Branagh shines through. You can tell he’s well aware this is a remake and appealing to that Downton Abbey / animated Cinderella niche, and serves up the plot, drama, and stiff upper lip BS that fans will just gobble up. Of course it’s not all credit to the director, we were blown away with performance of Cate Blanchett as the wicked step mother. We think the Oscars have become total bullshit (as we love to quote George C Scott’s opinion on it “It’s a goddamn meat parade”) but she reminded us of how Larry Hagman played J.R. Ewing on Dallas and how we loved to hate the villian. It’s that same kind of top notch first teir finely tuned craft of acting that totally makes a film work with just that one role. Also praise to for Helena Bonham Carter as the narrator/fairy godmother who while being on screen for only 10 minuets, steals the show, and leaves you wanting more scenes with her character. Look we know we’re hard on and downright mean and hateful to the drama genre, as thanks to TV shows it the bane of our exististance. However something like this exquisite work comes along to give the bloated, over saccharined, and increasingly lazy  genre a much need slap in the face and violent shake by the collar that screams “NO! This is how you do drama right!”

On a scale of 1.0 to 5.9 it got a 5.2 out of 5.9

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Friday Special : Frequently Asked Questions

Were content creators, so we know it’s a bit of a one way street when it comes to the blog. We know you have questions. We do to, but while we answer our questions with reviews we know that’s not the case for everything, so today we present a special Friday post, Frequently Asked Questions.

Q: Why are posts always on Tuesdays, and seem to only be on Tuesday?

A: Unlike most blogs / sites that flood with content then go quiet for weeks at a time, E-Mod 116 Online has elected to use a stritct scheduling release window so every week there is fresh content posted. Sure every now and then you’ll get a bonus post like this one another day of the week, but we strive to be here every week for you. 

Q: If the reviews are scheduled so methodically are they fresh?

A: This is the ace up our sleve, the upside to reviewing a movie or TV show that is 20 or 30 years old is that topicality is not an issue, that means when a review is posted it may have been written weeks or even months ago. However we are not ones to let topically pass us by, in the rare instance we do review something current we post it that Tuesday and will bump or slide around other reviews to maintain the once a week release pattern.

Q: Why are the TV Show Reviews more negitive and snarky in tone then the Movie Reviews or Theme Park Reviews?

A: TV Shows have become either highly serialized for drama or awkward for comedy. E-Mod 116 Online is from the world of cinema, however to branch out over the past 20 years we’ve added TV Shows, that being the case because people binge watch so much today, idiotic TV executives, and show runners think it’s fine to drag out a story for 13 or 22 episodes. We don’t review things that way, we view it that is equivalent of being forced to watch a 13 hour or 22 hour movie, as such TV Shows get the brunt of our complaining and bad reviews, and will remain that way as long as TV shows stay serialized or think akward is the only way to do comedy.

Q: How does requesting a review work?

A: Simple, starting with the review of Big Hero 6 at the bottom we have link to the E-Mod 116 Online Facebook page it looks like this 

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Simply click on the link, like us, and fire off and email or text message from there on what you like to see reviewed (we promise we won’t make you wait months to see it posted.)

Review : Epcot Flower and Garden Festival 2015

Epcot is a perfect theme park. To understand Walt Disney World is to understand Epcot. It’s classy, it’s cultural, it’s polished, so that brings us to one of its annual events the Flower and Garden Festival. First off we’re always going to give high marks for the vibrant colors that transform Epcot into a vibrant showcase, where it’s impossible to take a bad picture even on the most crappy smart phone or smart device. Second however while we won’t dock anything for the presentation of it all, we were disappointed in the lack of a lot of new toparries this year. While toparries are always a work of art to look at, this year felt a little like a rerun, where as 2014 had diffrent or fresh ones then 2013. Bottom line if the presentation is good then a rerun isn’t too bad plus if you’ve never been then hey it’s new to you, so go enjoy, and bring your camera for lots of colorful pictures.

On a scale of 1.0 to 5.9 it got a 5.5 out of 5.9

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Review : Big Hero 6 (2014/PG)

Back in 1992 Disney produced by far the best film ever in it’s library, Aladdin so after 20 plus  years Disney once again hits a giant homerun with a film so character driven it excels on all levels we are talking about Big Hero 6. First off let’s get one big issue out of the way, John Lasseter being the executive producer of this film was taking many pages from the Pixar playbook of manufactured melow drama, which in itself is what butchered Toy Story 3 (and of course the abortion of a screen play written by cinematic anti-christ Michael Arndt.)  When you’ve been running the same schtick since 1995 it turns stale real fast. While we’re at it, the ending is a little too much in shades of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (one day we’ll tell you our issues with that film) so that does prevent it from ever overtaking Aladdin as the best Disney film ever made. So we slapped around the executive producer and the ending so why did we say we are giving this film such high praise? Simple that answer is Baymax. Just like Genie in Aladdin, or Sebastien in The Little Mermaid, Baymax is a rare character that comes a long and just makes the whole story work. He’s funny by being the straight man and being a walking PSA message, much like Number 5 from Short Circuit. It’s the huggable design of Baymax that makes him a fan favorite, a design that makes you ask “Why can’t I have my own healthcare companion?” Much like Data from Star Trek learns about humanity, so does Baymax, but his mission is to help all of humanity. The other major element of this film is that it’s a Marvel movie (right down to a Stan Lee bit part) basically it’s an animated Avengers, complete with fanboy Fred announcing the teams origin story. It’s that uniqueness that is what makes this film a winner no matter how much Lasseter is trying his hardest to cram the Pixar book of melowdrama down its throat.

On a scale of 1.0 to 5.9 it got a 5.7 out of 5.9

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Review : Star Trek V: The Final Frontier (1989/PG)

When it comes to science fiction cinema there are two great franchises that everyone knows – Star Wars and Star Trek. For those who don’t align with Han, Luke, Chewy, or even Bea Arthur (see the Star Wars Holiday Special for that last one) they align with Kirk, Spock, or McCoy. The original cast of Star Trek made six movies together before they headed off into the sunset, before the reboot of Star Trek 11. However this is not about reboots, remakes, or even old vs new, this about a movie that has been the undeserved punching bag of the series for close to 25 years, Star Trek V: The Final Frontier.

When talking about this film the usual arguments are “It almost killed the franchise” or “I blame everything on William Shatner’s directing” or “Does that even count as canon in the over all series?” Sure its easy to beat up a film over and over using those three arguments but, let us break down the film and go beyond the stock smack downs everyone screams, it is high time this movie is taken up a peg for once.

The first thing to understand is when comparing Star Trek V to the original 1960’s television series, this movie is by far the one that got the closest to recreating that TV show feel. Now yes you can argue “Well why don’t I just go watch a two-part episode of the original series” and while yes you could do that remember Star Trek only had just one two part episode “The Menagerie.” Had the series lasted beyond three seasons there may have been more, in fact Star Trek V could be seen as the way original series finally got another good two-part episode.

Other issues are about the story over all and how it does not fit with the previous four movies. While its clear Star Trek II, Star Trek III, and Star Trek IV are more or less a three part story like the Star Wars series, most people over look that Star Trek : The Motion Picture, Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, Star Trek: First Contact, and Star Trek: Insurrection are all stand alone stories. In fact Star Trek V actually references Star Trek II not once but twice, there is nothing wrong with a stand alone story, especially if the movies are suppose to be episodic. One must remember if they keep building on story that was started in Star Trek II by the time they did the fifth movie what would have been left to talk about, this is the same reason why Star Trek VI itself is also a stand alone story.

When it comes to the story, Star Trek V is also unique as for first time in the series up to that point the engines on the ship work perfectly the whole movie. Yes having the transporter out could be slighted as a cheap writers dodge to advance the plot, but think back to the TV series, they went down to planets and explored them for whole episodes, not beam down and beam back in five minutes. Now as for the setting of the story Star Trek V actually had new locations on a ship that haven’t been seen on the big screen before, such as the shuttle craft bay, the jefferies tubes, and observation deck. It should also be noted Star Trek V was the only movie in the original crew series that had a full touch screen interface for controls, which thanks to the iOS and Android devices touch interface still keeps the design of ship looking fresh. Going back to the plot yes the Klingons were a bit stock bad guy, but again comparing to the TV series most of the time the Klingons were like that, since Star Trek itself was Wagon Train to the stars that meant its based on westerns, and in that genre you had a hero and a villain, and the bad guy didn’t need a back story that character was just accept as it.

Now for the thorn in most people’s side over this movie, everyone blaming director William Shatner on the film. Shatner is a fine director and the movie is well directed, the light humor throughout works very well, DeForrest Kelly as Dr. McCoy without a doubt nails every single little sarcastic comment perfectly. What most people don’t know about the movie is that like everything in Hollywood there are budgets, time constraints, and other factors. During the production of Star Trek V there was a writers strike, there were budget issues, there was a June 1989 release window for a movie that started production in late 1988. When one takes all those factors into the equation for the hand that was dealt Star Trek V is a watchable flick, in fact compared to the bulk of films that were released in the science-fiction genre after it, the film is a far superior masterpiece. Bottom line is the the best Star Trek film ever released? No its not, but it is still a good film that had a interesting plot and had all the original characters on the Enterprise one last time. So after 25 years let it go, Star Trek V doesn’t deserve the treatment its always gets, its an underrated story that should have one viewing as everyone loves to blast off to the stars with original crew of the starship Enterprise.  

On a scale of 1.0 to 5.9 it got a 5.1 out of 5.9

Review : Once Upon A Time – Darkness on the Edge of Town (2015/TV-PG)

Once Upon A Time is without a doubt a series that tries our patience, for the sole reason it’s searlized. An iron clad rule of E-Mod 116 Online is that TV shows need to be respectful of your time, and forcing you to watch a 22 hour story isn’t just disrespectful it’s down right rude. Secondly the pacing is all over the place as its constantly does flashbacks or what the characters did in the fairytale universe. For those who don’t know the series was created by and this episode was written by Edward Kitsis & Adam Horowitz who actually penned the fantastic 2010 film Tron : Legacy however they are also responsible for Lost. Look we never watched an episode of Lost, but we know the bullshit it created with side universes and parallel stories. Bottom line they are doing that same horse shit with this series which makes it hard to watch and down right confusing with its story with pacing that jumps around so much the editor needs to be fired. There we feel better now, so let’s get on with the review of the episode finally (much like how the series takes too long to get to anything.)  So basically in a nutshell it took 54 minuets so say Emma Swan could be dark hearted. Really? It’s bad enough this is turning into a Disney character gang bang with piss poor relation to the source material. First off Cruella de Vil doesn’t have magical powers nor is she a fairy tale character, seriously did the writers of episode not watch the movie she’s from first? Then there is Ursula who works at an aquarium in New York, and barely used for the mindnumbiling slow episode, while atleast it’s sea based at the same time  her whole character is not really faithful to the source material. Once Upon A Time’s ultimate failure is what it’s desperately trying to do take what’s old and put a fresh spin on it, but in the end it spins so much it’s a dizzy and disjointed mess.

On a scale of 1.0 to 5.9 it got at 2.5 out of 5.9