Saturday, April 04, 2009

Dear Charlie:

You know, sometimes nothing satisfies like a good ol'-fashioned creature feature. A few months back, I watched a Korean flick called The Host. While packed tight with social and political commentary, The Host was also an enjoyable monster movie. Highly entertaining. Funny in the good way instead of the "Dear God, did they think that would work??" way.

On the other end of that spectrum is Deep Blue Sea, which I just finished watching for like the 10th time. One of Dave's favorites, I first made its acquaintance many moons ago, but hadn't seen it since he took it with him a few years back. However, every now and then, I think about that flick, about how they took the tried-and-true creature feature credo and kicked it up a notch by making the bad guy something that actually exists.

After all, what is a shark but God's oldest and most perfect killing machine?

All they did to these sharks was genetically tamper with their brain size to make them as smart as a smart human, then throw in a hurricane to muck up the gears. And viola. Creature feature extraordinaire.

However, the creatures weren't my main interest in this particular feature. Nope, the parts I remembered long after the last time I watched were thus:

Carter to Preacher: "Forty-five foot shark, and you hit me?"


Preacher's legacy: the perfect omelette. Two eggs instead of three. And the happy smile on his face as he starts to explain why amateurs using milk for density is a mistake.


Preacher making it all the way to the end. Face it, folks. When he says that brothas never make it out of situations like this, he ain't just whistlin' Dixie. The token black guy might as well have a target on his back in any type of horror-fest or thriller. Heh.

Anyway, just to re-jibe with such fun memories of a more-than-tolerably-good-flick, I decided to rent it again this weekend. I'd watched Mindhunters again last weekend and wanted to see another LL Cool J flick. He's just so much fun.

And this time, I noticed a couple of other things about this flick that make it memorable. Things I don't usually notice about a flick.

1. Thomas Jane looks nice in a wetsuit. Who knew??

2. Though the science is a little whonky, it's actually relatively plausible. Not bad, guys.

3. Samuel L. Jackson has this awesome line about the avalanche his character survived that I somehow missed before and can never forget now: "You think water's fast? You should see ice. It moves like it has a mind. Like it knows it killed the world once and got a taste for murder."

4. Thomas Jane looks even better in trunks. I mean, seriously. I've never thought him the end-all-be-all of looks, though he's an impressive actor and is in several of my more high-ranked flicks, but...geez. Put the man in nothing but orange trunks and a pair of flippers, and he has my attention.


Kinda makes me want to pop in The Punisher. Or The Mist. Oh, The Mist.

Now that is some mind-boggling acting, there. He is excellent in that one. His screams at the end as he wishes with everything in him for just one more bullet, as he fruitlessly pulls the trigger again and again....

Yeah. Shivers.

But LL is still my favorite character. He's just hysterical. And he's also the first one to kill one of the sharks. Yup, the measely ex-alky cook. You can bet he's cookin' with gas.

Stephen Seagal, eat your heart out. Pssh.

[EDIT: Just saw a trailer for The Mutant Chronicles, and I'm thinking I have to see that one. I mean, besides having Thomas Jane, it has Ron Perlman. I think anyone who's read more than 5 posts on this blog knows that I absolutely adore and admire Ron Perlman. I even suffered through In the Name of the King for him. And for Jason Statham, but that's a different story. So, yeah.]


At 6:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not just in horror flicks, hell, they killed the black robot in Transformers.

Ok, Ok. So technically Ironhide was the "black" autobot. But you only need to listen to Jazz's first line in the movie to know he's a brotha.

Ultimate Creature feature for me is still 28 Days Later....if only cause I am still too much of a chicken sh*t to get through it. *g* One day maybe.

At 5:18 PM, Blogger writtenwyrdd said...

I generally hate these kinds of movies--I mean, really HATE them--but you make me want to watch Deep Blue Sea again and actually watch it instead of endure it while friends have it on and I find something to read.

At 6:18 PM, Blogger GutterBall said...

You know, Soleil, I thought I was the only person to have that thought while watching Transformers. *snerk* Good to know I wasn't alone. Heheh.

I might classify 28 Days Later as more a zombie flick than a creature feature, but I agree that it's creepy as hell. The best part was when a single drop of contaminated blood dropped from the crow's beak into the guy's eye and turned him. Awesome. And so poignant when considering the last two decades' fears about fluid transfer and disease.

Oi. AIDS got nothin on the zombie plague.

And WW, bless your heart! I'm usually kinda iffy on the creature feature. They can be awesome, but they can also be atrocious.

However, like most horror movies, the awesome ones (while few and far between) FAR outweigh the annoyance factor of the bad ones. For instance, I'd watch Arachnophobia a hundred times, but only loyalty to the genre had me watching, say, Eight-Legged Freaks.

That kind of thing.

And, of course, there's always Jaws. Now that is a creature feature worth watching again and again.

"We're gonna need a bigger boat."


And, as far as Deep Blue Sea is concerned, Thomas Jane is definitely worth another look. And another. And another. Heheh.

At 8:05 AM, Blogger writtenwyrdd said...

I couldn't get through Aracniphobia. But I love Alien and the followups, and while they are SF they are also horror.

I confess to loathing Jaws as well. Just not into monster animals. I really dislike that particular horror trope, but can handle some of the other monsters like zombies just fine (if in the mood.)

At 6:42 PM, Blogger GutterBall said...

Bless your heart, WW. I admit freely to being easily amused, and a lot of creature features do amuse me. *grin*

Meh, it takes all kinds.


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