I don’t know why i do it, but i watch this movie every year at Christmas time. I don’t own this movie, but it seems to be on TV an awful lot. The past two Arnold movies i have reviewed have been pretty damn horrible and this one is no different, but it’s not as bad as everyone makes it out to be. In fact, i find this movie to be very entertaining until the last 10 minutes or so.
As you may or may not know, Jingle All The Way is a comedy about a father who is out to find a last minute Turbo Man action figure for his son on Christmas Eve. The only problem is that Turbo Man is the biggest toy of the season and every parent in town is after it!
Seeing how this is a comedy starring Arnold, you have to make him seem funnier. The best way to make Arnold seem hilarious is pairing him up with Sinbad. Sinbad is not really that funny. I liked him on Different World, but here he is playing the villain and comes of as really annoying, which is good because it makes Arnold that much more likable. Even though Arnold’s Howard Langston is not a good father and is more business minded than family oriented, he becomes really likable as he does everything in his power to get his hands on a Turbo Man.
One person that does shine in this film is Phil Hartman as Howard’s skeevy next door neighbor. Hartman is the “perfect” family man, who does everything to one-up Howard. His Christmas decorations are bigger, he already got his son the entire line of Turbo Man toys and he bakes cookies that Howard’s wife loves. We have seen the competitive neighbor a hundred times in these Christmas movies, but Phil Hartman does it the best.
Like i said before, i don’t hate this movie, but the last ten minutes leave a really bad taste in your mouth. All of the town has come out to see the big Annual Christmas parade. Arnold ends up getting on the Turbo Man float by taking the outfit of the man who is supposed to be portraying Turbo Man in the parade. You see, the Turbo Man float has the last Turbo Man action figure on it and this is Howard’s last ditch effort to get one, but there is one problem. Sinbad has dressed up like the villain of Turbo Man and is ready to duke it out with Arnold on the float. Fine, that would make a fun climax to the film, but the problem is, Turbo Man’s jet pack actually works and they start flying all around the city duking it out like real superheroes. It goes way too far and it’s really dumb. It actually ruins the movie for me. I know, right? I was totally down with Jingle All the Way by this point.
The movie is a pretty standard Christmas movie. It centers around a family that is a bit dysfunctional, but in the end they find that their love is greater than any Turbo Man doll. If it is on tv and you like Arnold, you should definitely watch it, i know i will.
So far i have only gotten 6 comments on my four reviews for Arnold movies. I have received zero comments on my last review of the Arnold classic, The End of Days. Now, i am not complaining. I like Arnold films and I enjoy doing the reviews, but I wonder if anyone would notice if i didn’t do a review of Batman and Robin, because i am not looking forward to it. I have only seen this movie once, but remember it being incredibly horrifying. It has been 13 years since it was released in theaters, so i decided, in the interest of the blog, to check it out again. Unfortunately, when i looked for a clip to post at the end of the blog, i came across THIS and it made me not want to watch the Batman and Robin ever again. I really like Arnold and he entertains me to not extent, but this movie is just so horrible. Between the bad puns, the horrible direction and the obnoxious production design, i just want to punch my computer in the face!
Since i don’t own this movie, i’ve decided to see if it was available on Netflix instant view. Unfortunately it is only available by disc. I only get one disc at a time and there is no way in hell i am going to wait for this movie, when i already have other real movies that i want to see. So, how am i supposed to review a movie i haven’t seen in 13 years? Easy, i do it by memory.
So Batman and Robin begins with the title characters air surfing into Mr. Freeze’s lair. I am not sure who is flying the helicopter or blimp, but the CGI looks so bad that i am already hating this movie. So they do some sort of Fred Flintstone dinosaur tail slide. I guess Mr. Freeze is in a museum or something. So they fight Mr. Freeze and you realize that this Batman is not Val Kilmer, but that one guy from ER and From Dusk Til Dawn. That dude that played Robin is back to play Robin and he acts just as shitty as ever.
In the movie, Mr. Freeze teams up with Poison Ivy and Bane, while Batman and Robin team up with Batgirl. So you have 4 character origins to weed through and leave room to tell a story. Ah fuck it, who needs a story? So Batman and Robin go and fight these bad guys and there is a really bad shot of Robin that is played in reverse and then looped. There is a scene where the heroes from “regular” Batman and Robin costumes to their super awesome “Raiders’ Nation” costumes. I am not sure why they change their clothes, but it probably has something to do with toy sales. During the scene where they are suiting up, there is a shot of Batgirl’s ass, Robin’s nipples and Batman’s dong. So I think the plot of this movie is that Mr. Freeze wants to freeze the whole world and Poison Ivy wants to fuck Batman. I have no idea what else happens in this movie, but i think Robin is jealous and wants to fuck Poison Ivy, so Batman and Robin tag team Poison Ivy, Batgirl watches and Mr. Freeze thaws out.
Holy cow, here we go again. As bad as The 6th Day was, i would rather watch that than The End of Days. The thing that i hated the most about The 6th Day was the lack of cool villains, but this has Gabriel Byrne as Satan, but it still sucks. I really like Arnold, but all of these movies that came out toward the end of his career lacked any of the fun that Arnold had earlier in his career. I have the feeling is because Arnold was trying to get action movies with more substance. Instead of having fun, it was all about cloning, terrorism and religion. I missed the days where he just went out and killed a bunch of people for revenge.
The story of End of Days is pretty simple. It is the end of the century and at the stroke of midnight, the devil has to impregnate the offspring of Jesus in order to begin “The End of Days” and it is up to Jericho Cane (arnold) to stop this from happening. Or at least that is what i remember the plot being.
Jericho Cane is a tough New York cop, complete with a Staten Island accent, who is on the verge of suicide and does not believe in God. His life sucks and he does not give a shit about anyone, he also happens to be the smartest man on the planet. You see, toward the beginning of the film, he ends up going to a crime scene with his partner, played by Kevin Pollak, where they find a body with a bunch of religious symbols carved into his body. In the body is etched the words “Christ in New York”, a clue which Jericho immediately deciphers as Christine York. I don’t know his line of reasoning to this, but you can follow his outer monologue which goes something like this, “Christ in New York? Christ in New York? CHRISTINE YORK!”. Normally i would blame this scene on weird acting by Arnold, but in this case he was given really shitty dialogue that nobody would be able to make sound normal.
Some other stuff happens in this movie, then Gabriel Byrne turns into a big CG Demon that looks dumb. Jericho Cane kills the demon and saves the world. The End.
There is not much that i can say about this movie. The action is alright and Arnold is doing his best to play it serious, which again is no fun. That is all i have to say about End of Days. I hope you are all looking forward to my glowing review of the George Clooney classic, Batman and Robin. Yikes!
As i mentioned before, i am going to be posting these reviews in reverse chronological order. The reasoning is simple, the more recent Arnold movies aren’t as fun as the older ones. I never understood why the decline in entertainment, until just this moment. Arnold’s villains just become less and less interesting. I am going to try to watch all of these movies before i post the reviews, but at the time of writing this paragraph, i have not watch The 6th Day in a couple months and yet i still have no idea who is the villain is in the movie. I think it may be Michael Rooker. I know that Michael Rapaport is in the film, but he is Arnold’s friend. At least he is in the beginning. I think it is best that i go watch this one now, but i know i will just be terrified by the robot toddler.
Ok so i just popped in the bluray and first off it looks great, but what makes me laugh is that there is this explanation about the “history of cloning” and then the title screen pops up. Immediately following all this exposition a title card reads “In the near future. Sooner than you think”, then cuts to an XFL game. Either these events went down after the XFL has been reinstated or this shit already went down a decade ago. I like that even in the future, the XFL still can’t fill seats.
Okay, i am not going to do a running commentary, but i am only 3 minutes in on the Arnold stuff and he gets hit in the nuts with a door knob, they have a lame commercial about cloning dogs called “Re-Pet”, his daughter is the worse actress ever, they have a space aged mirror that tells you your daily schedule and his daughter asked him if he wants Nacho or regular flavored banana. I just need to sit back and watch and try to forget the stupid shit by the end of the movie. Okay wait. Arnold just took a bite of cereal and acted like he was going to throw it up. It immediately cut away to a shot of him ordering more milk. I guess the milk went bad, it was not really explained. I am going to have to look this up, cause it makes no sense. Seriously, watch this scene and tell me what is going on with the milk!! It is never set up. It is never explained after the fact, and it doesn’t help that there is a really bad edit in there.
The Sixth Day is exceptionally bad. I think the concept could be cool, but between the shitty editing and crappy directing of Roger Spottiswoode this movie is just one big turd. If this movie was more like the trailer (shown below), it would be super badass. I know what you’re thinking, “Ralph aren’t all of Arnold movies bad?”. Yes they are, but they all have some sort of entertainment value. In this one Arnold tries to take the subject matter too seriously and it comes off really weird. His acting is laughable and his humor is not. It is really bad and the worse thing about it is that Robert Duvall put too much into his performance. I have a feeling that he didn’t know what movie he was in.
The action is horrible, the laser guns are dumb and the jokey technology is worse than a shitty Verhoven film. The 6th Day is just not good. If you want to check out all the Arnold movies ever made, you will have to see this movie. If you don’t give a shit about Arnold movies, you can pass this up.
BY THE WAY, THIS FILM GOT TWO THUMBS UP, BUT PREDATOR DIDN’T?
Collateral Damage is easily Arnold Schwarzenegger’s best performance to date. Now, i am not saying it is a good performance, but it is really good for Arnold standards. Collateral Damage is a film that was made around 9/11, in fact it was delayed post 9/11. The story centers around Gordy Brewster (Arnold), who is a firefighter who loses his wife and son in a terrorist attack. Hi-larious. Then he decides to take the law into his own hands and hunt down the terrorist in Columbia.
One of the things with this movie is that it is definitely not a movie that was made with Arnold in mind. It is a pretty straight forward drama, with very little action. There is no one liners or humor for that matter. Arnold is pissed and keeps his “intense face” on the entire time. The film was directed by Andrew Davis, who directed “Above the Law”, “Under Siege” and one of my top ten favorite films “The Fugitive”. It seems like after doing The Fugitive, Davis started to make dramas exclusively. Any humor that came with his previous films seemed to go away, which is a shame, because everyone could use some sort of comic release. Enter John Leguizamo.
After getting arrested and placed in a jail, Gordy gets free with the help of John Turturro. I am sure his character had a name, but it didn’t matter. So John Turturro is able to get Arnold out of the prison and takes him to a drug runner named John Leguizamo. Yeah, he probably has a character name as well, but it does not matter. “Johnny Legs” is definitely light hearted, but by this point things have been so deadly serious, that you just want Arnold to kill a bunch of bad people. But it never really happens. Arnold walks around, talks to some people, then walks around some more in order to talk to some people. I have tried to verify this, but if i recall correctly, Arnold only kills three people in the movie. I should probably go back and re watch the whole movie, but i never said that these reviews would involve research.
I like the movie alright. It is not the greatest movie in the world, but it is more bearable that some of the movies i will review. The thing that baffles me is that it is not necessarily an action film. I think that this movie would be more engaging with a good actor. It is good to see Arnold try his hand at some dramatic work, but that is not the reason i love Arnold movies so much. I am in it for the one-liners, the awkward smile and the winks to the camera. I don’t hate this movie, but i don’t love it either.
By the way, what is up with the shower scene with the boy at the beginning?
★ ★ ★
And so it begins. ARNOLD MOVIES!! Unlike the 007 films, i will be review these films in reverse chronological order. The reason? Because i think that his movies get more fun the farther you go back. Even though a lot of people don’t like T3, i actually like it quite a bit. The reason i like it is simple. It is an Arnold movie!
As you will find out later, i am not as big of fan of T2 as you would think. The original The Terminator film is my favorite of the series. There is a lot of cool information about this reality that James Cameron has created. It was great that he took this great sci fi plot and infused it into this great action/horror film. The sequel is just a flat out Action film. The great thing about T3 is that it takes some of the sci fi elements that were set up in the first film and brings them to life. To actually see Skynet come to life seriously made this movie for me.
When it comes to Terminator movies, you need to have specific components. The movie has to be centered around a chase. The good guys have to be chased by a ruthless Terminator machine from the future and in the end the they need to save the world from it’s own future. T3 has all of these components.
I really like Nick Stahl as John Conner. I thought he did a good job sort of continuing what Edward Furlong did in T2. I think he did a much more successful job at the transition than Christian Bale did in Terminator Salvation. I thought that the death of Sarah Conner was an interesting inclusion into the film.
Once thing that i was a bit disappointed in was the exclusion of Sarah Conner. I understand the fact that John Conner was old enough to fend for himself, and that she was unnecessary for the story, but i would have liked to have seen her death. I think it would have made for a great stinger or flashback to the film. To see her die, it would have been a great motivation for the character John Conner.
Now we come to Arnold. In this film, the Terminator is fighting the T-X, a super sexy “Terminatrix” who has all the best parts of the T-101 and T-1000. She is incredibly hot and totally unstoppable. I suppose if you are going to watch the Terminator tussle around with another robot, there might as well be sexual tension.
I think one of the things that people may have a problem with is the humor brought to the movie by The Terminator himself. There are certain points in the movie where the director has Arnold do some silly things. “Talk to the Hand” and those Star Shaped Sunglasses come to mind. Obviously they are lame jokes that Arnold thought were probably hilarious and the director Jonathan Mostow didn’t know how to say no to Arnold, like James Cameron would have. Either way, i am fine with the “jokes”. I think it is funny that the T-101, which is obviously an old clunker of a machine, is continually sent back in time to help John Conner. The T-101 is supposed to be out of it. I think it is kind of funny. There is no way that a T-101 would consider whether those sunglasses were cool or not before putting them on.
T3 is a great movie. It is entertaining and continues the story of the rise of Skynet. It has some great action and best of all it stars Arnold Schwarzenegger!
★ ★ ★½