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Young Ones
Young Ones
DVD
Price: $12.99

4.0 out of 5 stars A faulty yet reasonable vision of the future, October 18, 2014
This review is from: Young Ones (Amazon Instant Video)
Jake Paltrow's futuristic western is divided into three chapters that are designated to the primary male characters of the film; Ernest, Flem, and Jerome. This allows the audience to become more acquainted with each of these characters. Ernest is a hard working man who is just trying to do what's best for his family, Flem is a manipulative liar who will take whatever drastic measures he can to get what he wants, and Jerome is at that age where he's just trying to find himself as an individual and as a man.

Naturally there is a war over water in "Young Ones" as bandits are consistently trying to steal whatever they think they can to help them obtain water. Robotics are featured in the film such as automobiles and tractors with robotic legs and helicopter drones. What Ernest and Flem end up with looks and moves like a cybernetic grasshopper, but is more along the lines of a mechanical donkey with a giant laundry basket on its back. Another sci-fi element includes the awkward exo-suit Ernest's wife Katherine (Aimee Mullins) straps herself into to walk. It has all these wires and cords that makes Katherine seem like this helpless robotic marionette. Gas stations that pump water instead of fuel, mobile P.O. boxes, and a hand fan that functions like a smart phone are just a few more of the intriguing concepts featured in the film.

Since the film takes place out in the middle of nowhere, its vision of the future is slightly different than what you've come to expect from most science fiction films. The world showcased in "Young Ones" doesn't have the same resources films like "The Fifth Element" or "Blade Runner" do. This is like a less advanced, poorly evolved version of what you've come accustomed to when it comes to visions of the future.

The film does suggest amateurish tendencies that weakens Jake Paltrow's vision. Scenes and images are frequently bleeding into one another; sometimes multiple sequences and floating heads are featured in one scene. The characters are all fairly one-dimensional, as well. No attention is given whatsoever to the female characters of the film, so Mary and Katherine just feel utterly lifeless. The storyline is also extremely straightforward and refuses to deviate from similar tales you may be familiar with.

"Young Ones" is defectively unstable as far as strong performances, unique storytelling, and smooth editing are concerned, but its beautiful cinematography, bleak overtones, and ability to blend the science fiction, western, and drama genres fairly seamlessly helps categorize the film into a more than satisfying non-guilty pleasure.


Dead Snow 2: Red vs Dead
Dead Snow 2: Red vs Dead
DVD
Price: $9.99

4.0 out of 5 stars The undead Fuhrer of zombie sequels, October 11, 2014
It's as if while making "Dead Snow" Tommy Wirkola realized that intestines are the key to a unique zombie film. "Dead Snow 2" has at least three separate occasions where someone's intestines are used to kill the undead or someone who was once living. The film keeps its ability to find humor in everything. The comedy always tends to teeter on being raunchy and absolutely overboard, but is relatively harmless and fun overall. The ridiculousness only seems to add to the film's amusement factor.

Being bitten by a zombie doesn't make you turn in this world. The victim generally just dies from a zombie bite. However, Herzog has the ability to resurrect whoever he sees fit as does Martin who's now in possession of one of Herzog's arms. The introduction of magic to the zombie genre is an intriguing one since it's something that's either relatively new or not nearly as worn out as the apocalypse or an epidemic. Combined with the familiar "kill the head and the rest will die" concept, "Dead Snow 2" is the messy, blood-splattered goulash of something old mixed with something new.

The introduction of the Zombie Squad both hurts and benefits the films. Zombie Squad is an American trio of nerds who have prepared for zombies for quite some time, but have never encountered them. Consisting of Blake (Ingrid Haas), the "Star Wars" obsessed Monica (Jocelyn DeBoer), and the leader of the group named Daniel (Martin Starr), Zombie Squad is mostly an excuse for more comedic relief who serve more of a purpose than that poor sidekick zombie (played by Kristoffer Joner) who keeps getting dismantled and brought back to life again and again. Zombie Squad is silly and yet useful. The characters may leave you feeling torn since they're annoying one minute and somewhat exciting to be around the next.

The film throws police into the very predictable stereotype of being downright incompetent. Major Stubbe (Daniel Berge Halvorsen) is an utter buffoon as he rambles on about seagull translators and nearly breaks his leg while trying to kick open a door. On the upside, the exquisite practical effects return and flourish during the climactic and bloody battle sequence. The very last scene of the film is so ludicrous as the combination of the song playing, the movie "Dead Snow 2" decides to reference," and the vile act taking place rattles your brain as you try to decide if it's funny or just blatantly ludicrous.

"Dead Snow 2: Red vs Dead" is even bloodier and more excessive than the first film, but that's what makes it so entertaining. It's a one of a kind bloodbath filled with guts and gore. So grab a pile of intestines and the nearest severed head. "Dead Snow 2" is without a doubt one of the most preposterously bonkers and genre-pleasing zombie sequels ever made.


At The Devil's Door
At The Devil's Door
DVD
Price: $6.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Stalked by a sheepish demon, September 26, 2014
There's always been something intriguing about the concept of making a deal with the devil. Greed overpowers logic in order for an individual to obtain what they've always dreamed of. Whenever they least expect it, sometimes it's years after they've enjoyed the fruits of their desires and other times it's shortly after making the deal itself, the devil comes to collect and the borrower always comes to the conclusion that they've bitten off more than they can chew when it's too late for him or her to do anything about it. "At the Devil's Door" offers a glimpse of something terrifying, but flinches and fails to follow through with a horror experience that's completely gratifying.

Nicholas McCarthy's follow up to "The Pact" toys with horror quite exquisitely. Witnessing what occurs in the background while someone unknowingly makes a phone call or fetches a drink for their wife at a party is nerve-racking. The unpredictability sends your brain spiraling into its own imagination as it begins to predict what could happen. The film's use of mirrors is also more effective than it was in "Oculus." Catching a glance of a demon as he closes in on his victim is much more intimidating than simply not remembering your horrific actions.

But the events in the film seem to cater more to the bizarre rather than the unnerving. Body spasms, creepy behavior, and hiding babies under furniture can only get you so far. It's as if "At the Devil's Door" teases the idea of a demonic bloodbath but never takes its gloves off even after the bell rings. The ending seems to completely destroy what Vera stood for the entire film, but maybe that's to show how much power resides in the ability to manipulate everyone around you.

The few glimpses of the devil pulling the strings throughout the film seems like a cheap knockoff of both "Jeepers Creepers" and "Pan's Labyrinth," but the story itself borrows from the likes of "The Omen" and "Rosemary's Baby." Despite its thick, creepy atmosphere and sinister tone, the biggest flaw "At the Devil's Door" has is that it is constantly knocking on the door of a nightmarish journey and yet it isn't tenacious enough to take that first step inside.


Firestorm [Blu-ray]
Firestorm [Blu-ray]
DVD ~ Andy Lau
Price: $12.98
31 used & new from $7.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Shoot, explode, and repeat, September 24, 2014
This review is from: Firestorm [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
"Firestorm" has all of the right ingredients of a fast paced and hard hitting action film. Andy Lau is typically only a part of film projects that are better than average the majority of the time. This film is also directed by Alan Yuen who helped write films like "New Police Story," "Robin-B-Hood," and "Shaolin." Hong Kong knows how to make an entertaining police action film. So why does "Firestorm" feel so bland?

The action really sets fire to your adrenal gland and gets the blood flowing. Gunfights are loud, lengthy, and bloody, explosions are dangerous and volatile, and, most importantly, the choreographed fight sequences are intense and brutal. Andy Lau and Gordon Lam have the best fight in the film and it is absolutely relentless. Lau and Lam use a hard-hitting and MMA influenced kind of fighting style that echoes Wilson Yip's "Flash Point."

The film seems to come up short in every other aspect though. Inspector Liu is constantly reminded of how serious he is all the time. While Liu's emotional distance is understandable, Andy Lau's performance is almost completely devoid of any sort of sentiment. The most intriguing aspect of "Firestorm" is the side story of Tong Keung (Philip Keung); an undercover cop who is Liu's mole. The heart of the film that triggers Liu's inevitable breakdown resides in Tong's storyline.

The method in which Cao's friend and colleague named Paco (Ray Lui) enters the picture is completely unsatisfying. Identifying a source of the crime featured in the film is something "Firestorm" is reluctant to committing to. Liu and Bong are childhood friends, but that dynamic is never fully explored. So much time is spent on following the stereotypical as there's nothing that sets "Firestorm" apart from similar Hong Kong police action films that were done better.

There is an incredible action sequence that makes up nearly the entire resolution of the film. However anything remotely enjoyable about it is ruined by an overabundance of lackluster computer generation. "Firestorm" plays with CGI throughout the film as it lends a hand to a rather extravagant car crash and can take credit for nearly every sequence involving flying pigeons. The ending is where it really stands out though. The final scene also leaves too much lying on the table. It's as if "Firestorm" begins and ends with a very particular destructive act. The storylines of Inspector Liu and Bong end too melodramatically to be enjoyable.

With shades of "Drug War," "Hard Boiled," and "Infernal Affairs" at its core, it's completely disappointing to report that "Firestorm" is a monumental dud as far as explosive action films are concerned. Intriguing plot devices and character traits are exchanged for the cliché. While the action of "Firestorm" is thrilling, the weak ending and inability to follow through with its potentially promising story leaves the film feeling inadequate.


Tusk
Tusk
DVD
Price: $12.99

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars My kingdom for a walrus, September 19, 2014
This review is from: Tusk (Amazon Instant Video)
Wallace and Teddy's podcast is basically just the raunchiest program you could imagine hosted by the two biggest a-holes around. While some humor is buried deep down in this constant barrage of insult slinging, it's mostly just two guys mocking whatever they see fit. But The Not-See Party (make sure you spell it) has become a nationwide phenomenon. Interviewing weird and interesting people is what makes the podcast interesting and Wallace strikes the mother load with Howard Howe.

The dynamic between Wallace and Howard results in the first half of "Tusk" to be incredibly enthralling. Justin Long and Michael Parks have this chemistry that is undeniably stimulating and fascinating. At first, Howard seems like a man whose only desire is to tell his incredible stories but he soon reveals how mad he really is. Parks takes psychopathic behavior somewhere extremely memorable while Long portrays desperation impeccably.

Ally seems to be introduced only to remind Wallace of who he used to be. Wallace's soft demeanor has been replaced with a hardened shell that's completely numb to the rest of the world. Wallace has technically already become a monster and in retrospect the events of the film only allow his physical appearance to be altered in a way that shows just how monstrous he's become.

It's a shame that we live in a generation that is completely numb to the fact that sometimes teasing something visual or perhaps not showing it at all can be more terrifying than revealing an image in its entirety. Older horror films took advantage of this by not showing every gory detail when a victim was slaughtered or focused on the horrifying expression on someone's face to get the point across. "Tusk" could have used this to its advantage. The initial tease of the horror Wallace has gone through is scarier than the actual reveal. The film dives into ridiculous territory as soon Wallace's new look is shown on screen and never fully recovers.

Much like Quentin Tarantino, Kevin Smith has become known for long-winded yet meaningful and memorable dialogue. "Tusk" has this really great method of showing a scene early on to give the viewer an idea of what happened, but then comes back to it later on and fills in all of the holes with more character interactions. This usually pays off except for the flashback sequence involving Guy Lapointe and Howard Howe (under a different name, of course). The scene starts off as intriguing and humorous at first, but runs a little too long as its charm wears thin by the time Guy Lapointe steps off that porch.

Maybe it's time for Johnny Depp to start taking smaller and supporting roles rather than leading ones. Depp has had a lot of duds over the years, but his cameo in "21 Jump Street" was the most entertaining he'd been in at least a decade. Depp's role as Guy Lapointe is along the same lines in tone but is a meatier role. Depp looks like he's actually having fun under prosthetic make-up and is not only amusing as Lapointe but also a fairly layered character overall.

"Tusk" is the story of a man forced to become a monster while also settling in and finding comfort in his new skin. Michael Parks and Justin Long are superb. While the second half of the film doesn't measure up to the first half, "Tusk" is the best kind of demented absurdity any horror dramedy could ever hope to be.

The quote, "Is man indeed a walrus at heart?" is calmly uttered by Howard Howe in the film. However, the last lines of "Shutter Island" came to mind as "Tusk" waddled to a close. "Which would be worse: To live as a monster, or to die as a good man?"


The Zero Theorem
The Zero Theorem
DVD
Price: $12.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Nothing is everything, September 19, 2014
The atmosphere of "The Zero Theorem" is extraordinary. Everything is so full of filth and grime and yet absolutely intricate in detail. You can just tell that this is a film by the man who brought us "Brazil" and "Twelve Monkeys," but it wouldn't be farfetched to say the visuals are sometimes reminiscent of "The Fifth Element" or even "Blade Runner."

Most of the actors you recognize are only around briefly and initiate the desire of a more substantial role. Peter Stormare and Ben Whishaw appear long enough to establish strange behavior as two of Qohen's doctors. Tilda Swinton is a psychiatrist that is actually a program installed on a computer. Swinton lays down a beat and raps her heart out before disappearing completely. Lastly, there's Matt Damon, who when first introduced is sitting in a zebra striped chair while wearing a matching striped suit with bleached blonde hair, drinks the cup of tea resting on his knee, and never averts his gaze from the book he's reading.

There's a message lying dormant within "The Zero Theorem" that is just waiting for that initial spark to turn over and fire on all cylinders. Qohen is more comfortable in the virtual world that is created for him and constantly retreats back to it. Even when he's not plugged in he's immersing himself in his work so that he doesn't have to interact with the real world that he hates. While The Zero Theorem program could have just been a way to prove that nothing exists, Qohen sees it as a way of rediscovering happiness and finds it in his experiences with Bainsley. He has no joy in his life, but by the end of the film he's exactly where he belongs and has also figured out how to unlock the realms of his imagination.

Like "The Brothers Grimm" or "Tideland," "The Zero Theorem" requires time and multiple viewings to allow the viewer to really wrap his or her ahead around how meaningful and great it really is. There are even shades of "Holy Motors" that should be welcomed with open arms. Featuring yet another captivating performance from Christoph Waltz that is undeniably heartbreaking at its core, "The Zero Theorem" is the perfect cinematic concoction of bizarre and extraordinary resulting in an idiosyncratic odyssey that is remarkably unique.


Frontera (English Subtitled)
Frontera (English Subtitled)
DVD
Price: $6.99

1 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Idiocy knows no bounds, September 19, 2014
*spoilers included*

Seeing how Americans treat immigrants while also being introduced to why immigrants have to illegally come to America is something "Frontera" could have capitalized on. Suddenly relating to someone you least expect often makes for a very interesting viewing experience. Unfortunately though, "Frontera" takes the overly dramatic approach and tries to make television drama cinema worthy.

Everyone in the film makes the stupidest decisions you can imagine. The teenagers who decide to stop playing Halo and go shoot at people in the desert are asinine. Firearms hurt and kill people no matter how many derogatory names you throw at one another. Miguel keeps running to the states even though he has a criminal record and it's never worked for him in the past. Miguel's wife Paulina (Eva Longoria) suddenly comes running when Miguel turns up missing, but is shocked when things don't go as planned.

Ed Harris gives a performance that is an even more watered down version of the one he gave in "The Face of Love." Harris never cries even though he tries to portray being grief stricken. Putting your head down and falling down in the desert can only get you so far. Eva Longoria is completely dull and lifeless as Paulina. Sean (Seth Adkins), Brad (Evan Adrian), and Kevin (Tony Ford) are so overloaded with stereotypical masculinity it literally makes you sick.

The entire film is mostly devoted to Roy moping and brushing his horse before finally investigating on his own. Sheriff Hunt comes off as being completely incompetent and incapable of running a police department because of Roy's actions. Meanwhile Miguel is just trying to make an honest living so he can provide for his family. He keeps getting the short end of the stick while his companion Jose seems to keep getting rewarded for taking short cuts.

The drama just jumps to absurdity rather than relying on logic. "Frontera" legitimately (and dramatically) tries to make it seem like a man can catch a speeding car on a horse. The resolution is so outrageously corny, as well. Who in their right mind would make amends by expecting someone else to clean up horse feces? "If that's not enough, you can help me repair this fence to keep your people out and we'll go ahead and sweep my wife's death under the table."

"Frontera" takes the "being in the wrong place at the wrong time" saying a bit too seriously. This is a drama that is trying way too hard to be "Crash" in the desert. The performances are dull, the story is worn out, and the film just doesn't know when to call it quits. As far as entertainment goes, "Frontera" is the slowest rolling tumbleweed around.


Borgman [Blu-ray] + Digital Copy*
Borgman [Blu-ray] + Digital Copy*
DVD ~ Jan Bijvoet
Price: $27.98
22 used & new from $17.99

7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nightmare fuel, September 9, 2014
The Dutch film "Borgman" is the first time being acquainted with the work of writer/director Alex van Warmerdam. "Borgman" is his eighth film, but his first to be released stateside. What makes such a film so intriguing is that it's so open-ended and it can be interpreted in so many different ways.

"Borgman" is peculiar in absolutely every way. It's a film that not only purposely refrains from laying out any sort of explanation, but thrives on characters that do extremely strange things and behave suspiciously. Camiel obviously has a plan from the start, but what that plan is never really comes to light.

The deleted scenes and 28-page booklet included with the Blu-ray only seem to ignite more questions within the viewer. What you do know is Warmerdam was aiming for a form of evil that could strike at absolutely any time. The quote at the beginning of the film seems to hint at a continuously growing army while the dogs featured in the film could represent the hounds of hell. Is Camiel the devil or another fallen Angel? The trivia for the film listed on the IMDb page of "Borgman" says that Borgman acts like an "alp," which is a nightmare demon from German folklore. This explains Camiel's manipulation of Marina's dreams.

But there are still so many questions left unanswered even when you take all of that into consideration. Cement is used in a fairly unique way, but what is the purpose of the story of the white child? Why do they target the backs of not only their victims but the recruited, as well? Camiel's motives are unclear other than he wants to play. The entire film is Camiel toying with Marina's family. It's as if everyone is under a hypnotic trance that caters to Camiel's every whim.

A cult-like state of mind comes to fruition in the film to give the already well-established dark atmosphere a hint of "The Wicker Man." Meanwhile nearly all of the art for the film seems to take a page out of Terry Gilliam's book. Your brain is constantly turning over trying to unravel the thick coat of uneasiness "Borgman" smothers itself in.

Not quite as thought provoking as Denis Villeneuve's "Enemy," "Borgman" is still able to reveal just enough behind the curtain to get your creative juices flowing. Beautifully filmed and intellectually stimulating, "Borgman" is one of the most unique and exhilarating films of 2014 despite its lack of resolution and clarification.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 15, 2014 6:04 PM PDT


The Last of Robin Hood (Blu-ray + DIGITAL HD with UltraViolet)
The Last of Robin Hood (Blu-ray + DIGITAL HD with UltraViolet)
DVD ~ Richard Glatzer
Price: $24.28

3.0 out of 5 stars A sleazy yet delectable drama, September 6, 2014
Kevin Kline looks and acts the part of Errol Flynn absolutely impeccably. The film shows a picture of the real Errol Flynn during the end credits and Kline is a splitting image of him in the film. Not only does he look the part, but his actions as Flynn are fantastic as well. He is dashing, manipulative, and charming. His balls to the wall attitude and playboy lifestyle allow him to be a despicable gentleman of sorts. Kline's ability to be charismatically funny for any occasion brings the best out of the character even at the worst of times.

If you look at Dakota Fanning's performance in the singular sense then it isn't really that impressive. It's her chemistry with Kevin Kline that makes everything in the film work. All of the chemistry that is mentioned in the film about Flynn and Beverly noticeably falling for and caring for one another is seen and felt in the film. The mother and daughter tension that develops throughout the film is also quite strong. Dakota Fanning and Susan Sarandon do an incredible job of letting their emotions do all the talking whenever they share screen time.

You don't really think a film regarding a well-liked actor from nearly 60 years ago that touches on his weakness of liking underage girls could be entertaining in the slightest. "The Last of Robin Hood" demolishes whatever expectations you may have though. Finding the perfect balance between heartbreaking, engaging, and amusing, "The Last of Robin Hood" is an enchanting drama with dazzling performances from its three leads.


Frank Miller's Sin City: A Dame To Kill For [HD]
Frank Miller's Sin City: A Dame To Kill For [HD]
DVD
Price: $14.99

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Black and white and bled all over, August 22, 2014
It felt like a long, dragged out, bloody knuckle fight to get a sequel to "Sin City" made. Being delayed 10 months after its original release only made the eight year wait between films feel even longer, but the release of "Sin City: A Dame to Kill For" has finally seen the light of day. The anticipation was high since the original film is a personal favorite for a faithful fan base. On the comment sheet I received at the screening for the film, I originally put that "A Dame to Kill For" is "nearly as good as the original film," but after letting it marinade deep within the crevices of my brain I realized that it is nowhere near as good as the first film and yet, in a way, that's perfectly acceptable.

Sequels always have their work cut out for them, especially if the original film is held in such high regard. The second (and any future) installments are often not as good as the first. However the main obstacle "Sin City: A Dame to Kill For" fails to ever properly overcome is the never-ending sense of the sequel not going anywhere for 102 minutes.

Returning characters are shades of their formers selves. Marv (Mickey Rourke) has had every ounce of interest sucked out of him as his character is nothing more than a tool for both Dwight (Josh Brolin) and Nancy (Jessica Alba) as they use Marv for whatever goals they may have in Sin City. Nancy just drinks herself stupid four years after Hartigan's (Bruce Willis) death because she doesn't have it in her to kill the man responsible; Senator Roark (Powers Boothe). She counters that fear by cutting her hair, Frankensteining herself with a shard from a broken mirror, and some drunken dancing.

In case you're confused, Dwight was played by Clive Owen in the first film but is now played by Josh Brolin. The concept of how that's explained is farfetched even for a film that lives and breathes on being outrageous and violent. Bruce Willis is only around to remind everyone that he's dead and that he was in "The Sixth Sense" while any other returning character is really only around long enough to recognize before making way for the rest of the cast.

The newcomers are all cannon fodder. Eva Green plays Ava; a manipulative woman who lives to screw over Dwight and to get her way by using her body as a weapon. Green's character is similar to Artemisia in "300: Rise of an Empire" except she's naked for a hell of a lot longer. Dennis Haysbert replaces Michael Clarke Duncan as Manute and you'll hardly notice the difference. Christopher Meloni's Mort character arc mostly mirrors Hartigan's story from the first film.

Johnny (Joseph Gordon Levitt) is the most interesting new character "Sin City: A Dame to Kill For" has to offer and yet the film pulls the rug out from under him right when his story seems to be taking off. Johnny's motives are questionable. Even after being pummeled to a pulp, he comes back for more and goes right back to playing poker with the wrong man. The character has an intriguing aspect to it, but in the big scheme of things is a total waste.

The timeline of the stories in the film are all over the place, as well. "Just Another Saturday Night" takes place right after the events of the first film while "The Long Bad Night" seems like it takes place sometime after the first film, as well. "A Dame to Kill For" is obviously before "The Big Fat Kill" but then concludes afterward and "Nancy's Last Dance" is four years after Hartigan's death. While it is decipherable the way the stories jump around in time may be confusing for some.

But even with all of its shortcomings there's still something enjoyable about "Sin City: A Dame to Kill For." It could just be bias, but the striking visuals, outrageous violence, and the overflowing amount of absurdity is still entertaining in the best of ways. Even when the dialogue manages to be sharp or witty it seems as though Frank Miller just got lucky. You find yourself asking, "Did he really write that line on purpose?" Get in a knife fight in pitch black darkness and you're still bound to land a few blows despite your blindness.

"Sin City: A Dame to Kill For" is like a really stiff drink; one that you try on a whim when you're feeling nostalgic. It doesn't go down smooth. In fact it burns all the way down, but it gives you a killer buzz and you enjoy that thrill while it lasts. But then you wake up hung over the next day. Light pounds against your brain like a jackhammer and every sound is like a wave of rolling thunder in your ear drums. You regret the night before and, in hindsight, wish it would've ended differently.

Walk down the right back alley in Sin City and you can find just about anything except for a completely fulfilling return there. Despite its dynamic visuals and overflowing amount of sex and violence, "Sin City: A Dame to Kill For" is an exhausting pedal to the metal car chase that goes in circles, collides with a brick wall, and leaves the audience as they're thrust through the windshield and cuts to black before they hit the concrete. This sequel won't be for everyone, but it's decent filler before the big hitters step up to bat this fall.


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