Escape from L.A. (1996)

Escape from L.A.
Director: John Carpenter
Writer: John Carpenter, Debra Hill, Kurt Russell
Sequel to: Escape from New York
Cast: Kurt Russell, Steve Buscemi, Peter Fonda, Cliff Robertson, Valeria Golino, Stacy Keach, Pam Grier, Bruce Campbell, Georges Corraface, Michelle Forbes, A.J. Langer, Ina Romeo, Peter Jason, Leland Orser
Seen on: 26.5.2016

Plot:
2013. The future. After an earthquake, Los Angeles was turned into an island, separated from the rest of the USA, and used as a deportation station, not only for illegal immigrants, but also for people who lost their citizenship because they didn’t conform to the ultra-conservative morality enforced by the government. But the President’s own daughter Utopia (A.J. Langer) rebels against him and manages to get stranded in L.A. with a deadly device. Fortunately it’s just then that Snake Plissken (Kurt Russell) is caught once more and threatened with deportation himself – unless he retrieves both Utopia and the weapon.

Well. Since I wasn’t particularly taken with the first Escape film, it is not surprising that I didn’t love the second one either – a film that is inferior in almost every way to its predecessor.

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Very Bad Things (1998)

Very Bad Things
Director: Peter Berg
Writer: Peter Berg
Cast: Jon Favreau, Leland Orser, Cameron Diaz, Christian Slater, Jeremy Piven, Daniel Stern, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Kobe Tai
Seen on: 11.4.2016

Plot:
Kyle (Jon Favreau) and Laura (Cameron Diaz) are about to get married. As Laura is fully occupied organizing everything, Kyle’s friends Charles (Leland Orser), Robert (Christian Slater), Michael (Jeremy Piven) and Adam (Daniel Stern) are mostly looking forward to his bachelor party in Las Vegas. Kyle isn’t quite as excited about it, especially not when a sex worker (Kobe Tai) shows up in their hotel room. As Michael goes to have sex with her in the bathroom, she hits her head and dies. The guys start to panic but agree to cover things up – which is only the start of the problems.

Very Bad Things is a prime example of the worst kind of edgy humor, confusing offensiveness with being funny at every turn and ending up a tired, uncomfortable  mess. No wonder it’s virtually unknown – it would have been better if I had kept it that way as well.

verybadthings

[SPOILERS]

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The Guest (2014)

The Guest
Director: Adam Wingard
Writer: Simon Barrett
Cast: Dan Stevens, Maika Monroe, Brendan Meyer, Sheila Kelley, Leland Orser, Lance Reddick
Part of: /slash Filmfestival
Seen on: 30.4./1.5.2015
[Review by cornholio.]

Plot:
The Petersons have recently lost their son/brother in action in the Iraq war. As they still struggle with grief, a soldier turns up on their doorstep: David (Dan Stevens) served with their son/brother and he wanted to chek in on them as he had promised to take of the entire family. Mother Laura (Sheila Kelley) is quickly taken in by the charming David and offers him a place to stay for a while. It doesn’t take much longer for father Spencer (Leland Orser) and son Luke (Brendan Meyer) to bond with him. Only daughter Anna (Maika Monroe) remains suspicious – David is just too perfect.

So far, Adam Wingard movies were rather disappointing for me. But I really loved The Guest. It was funny and superentertaining and was one of my cinematic highlights of the spring edition of the /slash.

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