Concert Review: Bad Religion, Rochester, NY

“Age of Unreason Tour 2019”

Bad Religion, The Lawrence Arms
Tuesday, August 6h, 2019
Anthology, Rochester, NY

Our score: 5 out of 5 stars

Bad Religion made a stop at Anthology in Rochester, NY on August 6th as part of the bands current “Age of Unreason” tour.  Along with the elder statesmen of punk were special guest The Lawrence Arms. Despite a thirty year lapse since the bands last performance in the Flour City both groups brought their A game to the sold out crowd who packed the gills of the intimate venue on a warm Tuesday night.

Epitaph label mates The Lawrence Arms opened the evening’s festivities promptly at 8pm and as the venue quickly filled to capacity the three piece group from Chicago, IL held court treating fans to their windy city brand of grit infused punk rock. Bassist/vocalist Brendan Kelly jokingly traded barbs with the audience between songs and at one point noted that this was the bands first time performing in Rochester. The band sounded great as it played songs from it six album catalog including a handful from their most recent release 2014’s “Metropole” before leaving the stage to a chant of one more song from the ever growing crowd.

After a somewhat timely change over Bad Religion would take to the stage basked in powerful, dark blue lighting. The band opened their set with the edgy “Them and Us” from the 1996 album “The Grey Race”. Vocalist Greg Graffin and the rest of the band consisting of Jay Bentley, Brian Baker, Mike Dimkich and drummer Jamie Miller blasted through a 27 song set full of classic BR songs like “Stranger Than Fiction”, “Atomic Garden”, Suffer” and “21st Century (Digital Boy)” and newer songs like “Chaos From Within”, “My Sanity” and “Do The Paranoid Style” all of which are from the bands recently released studio album “Age of Unreason”.

Bad Religion certainly made up for their long absence in Rochester as the bands high energy 27 song set fed the need of both long time fans and fellow new comers (some of whom were as young as 12 years old). Anthology’s medium sized venue played a near perfect host for the humble punk veterans who seemed to really appreciate the vibe and energy they received in return for their stellar performance. Bad Religion will be on tour in the States through October so if the band is coming to your area you owe it to yourself to be there!

Bad Religion Set List:

1.) Them and us

2.) End of History

3.) Fuck You

4.) Stranger Than Fiction

5.) The Dichotomy

6.) Recipe for Hate

7.) Chaos From Within

8.) Los Angeles Is Burning

9.) The Handshake

10.) My Sanity

11.) Atomic Garden

12.) Lose Your Head

13.) Suffer

14.) No Control

15.) Against the Grain

16.) Skyscraper

17.) Anesthesia

18.) I Want to Conquer the World

19.) 21st Century (Digital Boy)

20.) Generator

21.) The New Dark Ages

22.) You

23.) Do The Paranoid Style

24.) Fuck Armageddon…This Is Hell

25.) Sorrow

Encore

26.) Infected

27.) American Jesus

Film Review: 30 for 30 – “The Good, the Bad, the Hungry”

  • ESPN 30 for 30 – THE GOOD, THE BAD, THE HUNGRY
  • Starring: Joey Chestnut, Takeru Kobiyashi and George Shea
  • Directed by: Nicole Lucas Haimes
  • Running time: 1 hr 17 mins
  • ESPN Films

As the 4th of July approaches, many Americans will head to their backyards and throw some hot dogs on the grill. I know I am. And, if I’m particularly hungry that day, I might eat 3 of them. Which would in no way get me invited to Coney Island to participate in the Nathan’s International Hot Dog Eating Contest!

The contest has been going on since 1972, but it wasn’t until 2001, when a young Japanese man named Takeru Kobiyashi showed up and ate an amazing 50 hot dogs, with buns, in 12 minutes. He held the title for 5 years when, inspired by Kobiyashi’s success, a young man named Joey Chestnut took a chance at winning the coveted Championship Mustard Belt. He lost. Thus began an rivalry as intense as any in sports. And yes, Competitive Eating is a sport.

A very in-depth behind the scenes look at an event that draws 30,000 people annually, “The Good, the Bad, the Hungry” is another excellent film in ESPN’s 30 for 30 canon. Though I had certainly been aware of the annual Coney Island event, I was surprised to learn that competitive eating as a sport has long been recognized in Japan. We are introduced to early Kobiyashi gastronomic feats, like eating 19.6 pounds of food at one sitting. As the rivalry between Kobiyashi and Chestnut grows, so do the contests. I love me some Krystal hamburgers, but there is no way in hell I’m eating 97 of them. And their calorie intake isn’t the only thing that’s large. Chestnut has made six figures a year doing this.

In 2008, Kobiyashi and Chestnut tied, resulting in a 5-dog Overtime Period

What is amazing is that these two take their skill seriously. They train daily, everything from figuring out the right temperature of water to soak the buns in to training the various throat muscles to help swallow easier. We also learn about each one’s upbringing through conversations with their parents. While Chestnut’s parents are all for Joey’s achievements, Kobiyashi’s father is more subdued. Born after World War II, he notes that to him food is meant to be thankful for and appreciated. This doesn’t mean he isn’t proud of his son, of course,

Another thing noted are the cultural differences. Once Chestnut beats Kobiyashi, the Japanese man is shocked by the crowd’s sudden change. Where they had constantly cheered him, once defeated he is met with cheers of “USA! USA!” Not understanding American culture, his feelings are genuinely hurt.

I should add here that when he arrives in America, Kobiyashi is stunned at the size of some of the competitors. In Japan, most of the competitive eaters are thin. In fact, Kobiyashi only weighs 144 pounds and often celebrates his wins by pulling up his shirt and showing off his six-pack! If I won I’d be flashing a keg!

An entertaining film about an entertaining subject, grab a couple of hot dogs this week and pull up a seat in front of the television. Who knows, maybe you’ll be inspired enough to take Chestnut down nest year.

CD Review: Bad Religion “Age of Unreason”

“Age of Unreason”

Bad Religion

Epitaph

Producer: Carlos de la Garza

Tracks: 14

Our Score: 4 out of 5 Stars

Punk Rock God Fathers Bad Religion have just released their seventeenth studio album titled “Age of Unreason” The album is being released vie Epitaph Records and features 14 brand new tracks which were produced by Carlos de la Garza. This is the bands first release since 2013’s “True North” marking the longest gap between albums in the bands history.  “Age of Reason” is also the first album to feature guitarist Mike Dimkich and drummer Jamie Miller.

Bad Religion is a band that holds a special place in my musical heart as they were one of the first punk bands me and my friends really got into. 1994’s “Stranger Than Fiction” was often the soundtrack to our skateboard adventures as were many of the bands subsequent releases. Needless to say the bands activity has been on my radar for quite some time so when it was finally announced that “Age of Reason” was going to be released after a seven year recording hiatus the album quickly moved to the top of my listening queue. Tracks such as “My Sanity”, “The Age of Reason” and “The Old Regime” are classic BR through in through as all three feature the bands signature fast paced drumming, intermittent guitar soloing  topped off by vocalist Greg Graffin’s thought provoking lyrics. Songs such as “Lose Your Head”, “Candidate” and “Downfall” show the band stretching their legs a little bit as they experiment with a variety of beats and tones giving the album a nice balance of familiarity and freshness.
 
From beginning to end I found Bad Religion’s “Age of Reason” to be a fun and energetic listen. Even after a couple of consecutive listens  I still found myself going back and listening to some of the previously noted tracks as I just couldn’t get enough. Does the release have the rawness of albums like “Suffer” or “No Control”?  Not so much. However, the band, its fans and the world as a whole are in a completely different place than they were in the late eighties and early nineties. “Age of Reason” is classic Bad Religion with a modern twist which listeners new both new and old will enjoy time and time again.

TRACK LISTING

1.) Chaos From Within

2.) My Sanity

3.) Do The Paranoid Style

4.) The Approach

5.) Lose Your Head

6.) End of History

7.) The Age of Unreason

8.) Candidate

9.) Faces of Grief

10.) Old Regime

11.) Big Black Dog

12.) Downfall

13.) Since Now

14.) What Tomorrow Brings

Win Passes to the Kansas City screening of “Bad Times at the El Royale”

 

Media Mikes has teamed up with their friends at 20th Century Fox to give (50) readers and their guest a chance to be among the first to attend the Kansas City screening of the new film “Bad Times at the El Royale.”

The film, starring Jeff Bridges,  Jon Hamm and Chris Hemsworth, will screen on Monday, October 1st at the AMC Studio 28 Theatre in Olathe, Kansas.  The screening begins at 7:00 p.m.

All you have to do to attend is click HERE.  The first (50) readers to do so will receive a pass for (2) to attend the screening.  This is a first come/first serve giveaway.  Once all (50) passes have been claimed the giveaway has ended.  Good luck!

Dean Devlin talks about directing David Tennant in “Bad Samaritan”

Dean Devlin went from starting out chauffeuring for Al Pacino in the early 80’s to writing/producing some one of the biggest films including “Stargate”, “Independence Day” and “Godzilla (1998)”.  Dean stepped into the director’s chair for the first time last year with the big-budget “Geostorm”. He is back again directing and producing a new film starring David Tennant and Robert Sheehan called “Bad Samaritan”. We had a chance to chat with Dean about this new movie and how was it shifting in scale from big studio to independent.

Mike Gencarelli: “Bad Samaritan” has been in development since at least 2013, can you tell us how about you became involved with it?

Dean Devlin: What happened is, back then I got a call from writer Brandon Boyce, who I have been a fan of since “Apt Pupil” and “Wicker Park”, and he said he just finished a new script but before he sent it out to the world he asked if I would make some notes. I read the script and I only had one note for him…and that was not to show it to anyone else because I was going to make this movie. I was in love with it and bought it immediately. Right after, I went on did two other projects, so I had to wait till I was done with those to get back to it, but I was desperate to make the picture from the moment I read the script.

MG: You directed, produced and wrote “Geostorm” and with “Bad Samaritan”, you produced and directed; how was your experience differ between the two?

DD: Well, the experiences were night and day. The difference is doing a movie in a studio or independently. All of my best work has been from projects where it was independent or we had the creative freedom we needed. This was night and day, the best experience that I have ever had making a picture.

MG: Yeah I would agree, the scale is very different; what was your biggest challenge on this film?

DD: It is so out of what I have ever done before. I have never done this dark tone before. For me it was top to bottom, I had to rethink everything I would do like framing a shot for example or approach music. It was a terrifying task to take on but at the same time, it was thrilling. I have an amazing team of people. We spent a lot of time doing our homework and making sure the thrill and tone were set effectively. It was so exciting to do.

MG: How did David Tennant and Robert Sheehan come on board?

DD: Again, because this was an independent movie I didn’t need anybody’s permission to cast the film. If you do a studio film, that the process can be ridiculous. This was the case were I could just cast simply best actors we could get. My dream cast was to get Robert Sheehan and David Tennant in these roles. I felt like so blessed when they both said “yes”, because I really didn’t have a second choice for either part [laughs]. You get somebody in your head and it’s really hard to rethink it. When I did “Independence Day”, we wrote that part for Jeff Goldblum. If he had said “no”, we would have had to rethink the entire part.

MG: Tell me one film that is your “go-to” film to watch? …for me it’s “The Shining”.

DD: It really depends. I would have to say there are three and if they are on television I can’t turn them off. It doesn’t matter if I catch one scene…the first is “Enter the Dragon”. Another is “Tombstone”. I have to at least stay on until he says “I’m your Huckleberry” [laughs]. The last one has to be “E.T”. Those films are the ones that I can’t get enough of.

MG: What would be a dream project for you to direct?

DD: Listen, I have been so blessed in my life that once I have a dream project in mind, it becomes my next film. I approach this whole business like a fan. I never try and figure out what is going to be a success, I think that is a mistake. For me, it is like a fan boy, what do I want to see? And if no one else is making it then I try and go make it. I have been blessed from being able to make “Independence Day” and that I got the script of “Bad Samaritan” from Brandon Boyce. Each time out has been a dream come true.

MG: I am impressed to see that an independent film like this is getting a decent theatrical release.

DD: Well you know, the new Avengers saw that we were on their date…and they knew…they knew they needed to get out of our way. Run Avengers! [laughs]. I am going to throw this out for your readers: What is the thing that is in both in the new “Avengers” and “Bad Samaritan”? Let us see if readers can figure this out. (Leave comment below!)

All Photo Credit: Courtesy of Electric Entertainment

CD Review: Bad Cop Bad Cop “Warriors”

“Warriors”
Bad Cop/Bad Cop
Fat Wreck Chords
Tracks: 11

Our score: 4 out of 5 stars

It’s been a hectic few years since Los Angeles punk quartet Bad Cop/Bad Cop dropped their debut full-length, “Not Sorry”. The band spent a huge chunk of their intervening time on the road like many bands do and in that time wound-up discovering some ugly things about themselves. Out of those experiences came a number of tracks which make up the band lasts release titled “Warriors”, the bands third album which features 11 new tracks which are once again being released via Fat Wreck Chords.

If the song titles and lyrics are just a glancing look at what was going on with Bad Cop/Bad Cop over the last few years it’s a miracle this album even happened at all. Thankfully things smoothed out with the four piece as the group’s latest offering “Warriors” is a gritty and searing album brimming over with pop-punk infused goodness making for a fun and enjoyable listen. Tracks like the albums opener “Retrograde” instantly had me moving with its sparkling guitar intro and catchy sing along chorus while songs like “Amputation”, “Wild Me” and the album’s title track “Warriors all hit with similar results.

Bad Cop/Bad Cop are living proof that good can come out of a bad situation and the group’s latest offering “Warriors” is a fitting testament to that statement. The band sounds better than ever and each of the albums 11 tracks has the potential to get stuck in your head for long periods of time. I found myself listening to the album multiple times and with each listen I was able to find something new to enjoy each and every.

Track Listing:
1.) Retrograde
2.) I’m Done
3.) Womanarchist
4.) Why Change A Thing
5.) Victoria
6.) Amputations
7.) Broken
8.) Wild Me
9.) Warriors
10.) Kids
11.) Brain Is For Lovers

Blu-ray Review “Bad Santa 2”

Actors: Billy Bob Thornton, Brett Kelly, Tony Cox, Kathy Bates, Christina Hendricks
Directors: Mark Waters
Rated: Unrated
Studio: Broad Green Pictures
Release Date: February 21, 2017
Run Time: 94 minutes

Film: 3 out of 5 stars
Blu-ray: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 2 out of 5 stars

Billy Bob Thornton, Brett Kelly, Tony Cox all return for the completely unnecessary sequel. The 2003 film was a great film and that’s it. We never needed a sequel to this…did they see what happened to “Anchorman 2” or “Zoolander 2″…they didn’t learn. Kathy Bates and Christina Hendricks are to the cast but add no value, in fact I usually love Bates but she was flat out terrible in this. A few funny jokes but overall this just shouldn’t have happened.

Official Premise: Fueled by cheap whiskey and greed, Willie Soke (Academy Award-winner Billy Bob Thornton), teams up once again with his angry sidekick, Marcus (Tony Cox), to knock off a Chicago charity run by curvaceous Diane (Christina Hendricks). But the arrival of Willie’s horror story of a mother, Sunny (Academy Award-winner Kathy Bates), and “the kid” – Thurman Merman – may upset their plan. You better watch out, Bad Santa 2 is coming to town!

The Blu-ray presentation is nothing special but works for what it is. No complaints. If you want a Digital HD copy of this film included, you would need to shell out for the 4K Ultra HD release…but I wouldn’t waste your money. The special features aren’t anything special either. There are two versions of the film included. The Theatrical Version runs 1:32:16 and the Unrated Version runs 1:34:50. So it is really nothing extra included here making this worth it.

The special features included are “Thurman Then & Now” is as look into the actor between the two films. Next is “Just Your Average Red Band”, which looks at how raunchy the film is.  “That’s My Willie” Original Animated Series is a collection of animated shorts. “Jingle Balls” is (not a shocker her) the song “Jingle Bells” giving a dirty twist. Lastly there are a few deleted scenes, an alternate opening/ending and gag reel included.

Win Free Passes to Florida Screenings of “Bad Santa 2”

Calling Florida moviegoers, below please find the codes for the screenings of “Bad Santa 2”. If you want to see this film before ANYONE else! Hurry fast and grab tickets below and spread the word to your friends as well! They will go VERY fast! Enjoy and be sure to leave comments below after the film!

Fueled by cheap whiskey, greed and hatred, Willie Soke (Billy Bob Thornton) teams up with his angry little sidekick, Marcus, to knock off a Chicago charity on Christmas Eve. Along for the ride is chubby and cheery Thurman Merman, a 250-pound ray of sunshine who brings out Willie’s sliver of humanity. Mommy issues arise when the pair are joined by Willie’s horror story of a mother, Sunny Soke, who raises the bar for the gang’s ambitions, while somehow lowering the standards of criminal behavior.

JACKSONVILLE- 11/21 REGAL BEACH BLVD 7:30PM
Jacksonville- http://broadgreenscreenings.com/BS2MMJax

MIAMI- 11/21 AMC AVENTURA 7:30PM
Miami- http://broadgreenscreenings.com/BS2MMMia

ORLANDO- 11/21 REGAL WATERFORD LAKES 7:30PM
Orlando- http://broadgreenscreenings.com/BS2MMOrl

TAMPA- 11/21 AMC WESTSHORE 7:30PM
Tampa- http://broadgreenscreenings.com/BS2MMTam

WEST PALM BEACH- 11/21 CINEMARK BOYNTON BEACH 7:30PM
West Palm Beach- http://broadgreenscreenings.com/BS2MMWPB

Enter to Win a Digital HD Copy “Bad Moms” [ENDED]

To celebrate the digital HD release of “Bad Moms”, Media Mikes would like to give two of our fans a chance to win a digital HD copy of the film. If you want to win this great prize, please leave a comment below with a crazy mom party story! This giveaway will remain open until October 28th at Noon, Eastern Time. This is open to our readers in US only. One entry per person, per household. All other entries will be considered invalid. Media Mikes will randomly select winners. Winners will be alerted via email.

AVAILABLE ON DIGITAL HD OCTOBER 18, 2016

AND ON BLU-RAY & DVD ON NOVEMBER 1, 2016

FROM UNIVERSAL PICTURES HOME ENTERTAINMENT

ALL-STAR COMEDIC CAST INCLUDING MILA KUNIS, KRISTEN BELL, KATHRYN HAHN, 
CHRISTINA APPLEGATE, JADA PINKETT SMITH AND ANNIE MUMOLO IN 
THE OUTRAGEOUS AND ENDEARING COMEDY FROM THE WRITERS OF THE HANGOVER

Bad Moms, the year’s biggest R-rated comedy – a runaway hit with audiences and critics alike – is coming to Digital HD on October 18, 2016 and Blu-ray, DVD and On Demand on November 1, 2016, from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.  The raunchy film described as “incredibly funny!” by Chris Nashawaty, Entertainment Weekly, is the first R-rated comedy since The Hangover to earn an “A” grade from audiences nationwide.  Hailed by critics from The New York TimesChicago Sun-Times and Washington PostBad Moms is one comedy not to be missed.  The Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD come with nearly an hour of exclusive bonus content including hilarious deleted scenes, gag reels and exclusive interviews with the cast and their moms that will have everyone laughing again and again!

Written and directed by Jon Lucas and Scott Moore (The Hangover, Four Christmases) and produced by Suzanne Todd, (Alice Through The Looking Glass) and Bill Block (Dirty Grandpa), the comedy also features Jada Pinkett Smith (The Women), Christina Applegate (Anchorman 1 &2), Annie Mumolo (The Boss) and Jay Hernandez (Suicide Squad).  It’s time to party like a mother with this hysterical and relatable film.

In this hilarious and heartfelt comedy from the writing duo behind The Hangover, Amy (Mila Kunis) has a seemingly perfect life – a great marriage, over-achieving kids, beautiful home and a career. However, she’s over-worked, over-committed and exhausted to the point that she’s about to snap.  Fed up, she joins forces with two other over-stressed moms (Kristen Bell and Kathryn Hahn) on a quest to liberate themselves from conventional responsibilities – going on a wild, un-mom-like binge of long overdue freedom, fun and self-indulgence – putting them on a collision course with PTA Queen Bee Gwendolyn (Christina Applegate) and her clique of devoted perfect moms (Jada Pinkett Smith and Annie Mumolo).  See the movie that critics are cheering as “…a funny, giddy, sentimental laugh-in…” – Manohla Dargis, The New York Times.

DVD Review “Bad Asses on the Bayou”

Actors: John Amos, Danny Trejo, Danny Glover
Director: Craig Moss
Rated: R (Restricted)
Studio: 20th Century Fox
DVD Release Date: April 7, 2015
Run Time: 85 minutes

Film: 3 out of 5 stars
Extras: 1.5 out of 5 stars

When I “Bad Ass” was released back in 2012, I could have never predicted that this film would ever become a franchise. It was a blast of a film and a real surprise. The second was a bit of the same as the first and the third film follows again, a little campy and probably not needed but if you enjoy the team of Vega (Trejo) and Pope (Glover), then you will enjoy this. This guys may be older but like the title suggests, they can still are bad ass.

Official Premise: Bad Asses on the Bayou reunites the dynamic duo, Frank Vega (Danny Trejo) and Bernie Pope (Danny Glover), as they travel to Louisiana to attend the wedding of their dear friend Carmen Gutierrez (Loni Love). What was pictured as a wedding weekend escape to the south turns violently ugly as madness and mayhem ensue, pressing our senior heroes to once again serve justice.

Personally, I am a little disappointed with Fox that this film was only released on DVD. For “Bad Ass 1 & 2”, the films were released on Blu-ray and even included a Digital HD copy. That was not the case here for the third film as no Digital HD copy was included with this DVD only release. In terms of special features, there is only one extra included, which is a brief “Behind the Scenes of Bad Asses on the Bayou” featurette.

 

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Digital Film Review “Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa .5”

Actors: Johnny Knoxville, Greg Harris, Spike Jonze, Jackson Nicoll
Director: Jeff Tremaine
Rated: Unrated
Studio: Paramount
Release Date: June 3, 2014
Run Time: 86 minutes

Our Score: 3 out of 5 stars

If you are familiar with the “Jackass” film series, you should be used to the “.5” films in the series since everyone of the films has had one, like “Jackass 3.5” etc. Basically what they consist of are brand new never-before-seen pranks. “Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa .5” is being sold as an “all-new, uncensored movie” and normally it would be fine but “Bad Grandpa” had somewhat of a plot. This is more of a behind-the-scenes look into the film with additional gags throughout. So I really do not feel that is so much of a movie as it is a special feature. Now don’t get me wrong it is still very funny, there are some really solid jokes in there but definitely not as as good as “Bad Grandpa”.

Official Premise: BAD GRANDPA .5 gives you a whole new perspective on the world of Irving Zisman with unbelievable bonus scenes and hilarious pranks also featuring Academy Award-winner Spike Jonze (as “Gloria”) and Oscar®-nominee Catherine Keener (as Irving’s wife “Ellie”)…plus a look at the evolution of Johnny Knoxville’s naughty alter-ego, the Academy Award-nominated makeup effects, and an exclusive behind-the-scenes peek at the idiocy it takes to make a hidden camera movie in public.

The Unrated film is available now exclusively to download or stream at digital stores including Amazon Instant Video, CinemaNow, Google Play, iTunes, Sony Entertainment Network, Target Ticket, VUDU and Xbox Video. When the film comes out Blu-ray on July 8th, there will be over 40 minutes of additional footage including a round table discussion with Johnny Knoxville, Spike Jonze and director Jeff Tremaine about the evolution of Irving Zisman, a series of pranks gone bad, outtakes and more. If you enjoyed “Bad Grandpa” and just looking for a little more pranks, I could recommend checking this out.

Blu-ray Review “Bad Ass 2: Bad Asses”

Starring: Danny Trejo, Danny Glover, Andrew Divoff, Jacqueline Obradors, Jonathan Lipnicki, Dante Basco
Director: Craig Moss
Rated: R (Restricted)
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Release Date: April 8, 2014
Run Time: 91 minutes

Film: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 1.5 out of 5 stars

When I first saw the film “Bad Ass” with Danny Trejo and Danny Glover. I just knew it was going to be a riot. But after watching it I was really left speechless. The film was so over-the-top and crazy that it has you laughing out of loud screaming “DAMN!”. When I saw that the senior citizen duo were back in business for a second one, I thought to myself “Really?” but if you liked the first one this is still quite the trip.

Official Premise: Vietnam vet Frank Vegas (Trejo) not run an East L.A. Community center where he trains young boxers to survive in and out of the ring. But when his prize student falls in with the wrong crows and turns up dead, Frank teams up with his pal Bernie (Glover) to take matters into their own fists and prove that justice never gets old.

Danny Trejo and Danny Glover are really fun together. I can watch Trejo in anything he does, the guy is really a rock star. Not a huge Glover fan personally but he supports Trejo well. They are also a little more hammy this time around. The film also co-stars Jonathan Lipnicki (“Jerry Maguire”) and Andrew Divoff (“Wishmaster”).

Fox delivered the film as a combo pack including a Blu-ray and Ultraviolet HD digital copy. The 1080p transfer works well with the film and action. Remembering the first film it wasn’t that special either. The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track is solid as well. There is only one special feature included, which is a “Making of Bad Asses” featurettes, which gives a brief behind-the-scenes looks.

If you enjoyed this film, then don’t worry since the third film in this new franchise just finished being filmed and is called “Bad Ass 3: Bad Asses on the Bayou”, which might be taking this a little too far but strangly enough I am still game. How about you?

Film Review “Bad Words”

Starring: Jason Bateman and Rohan Chand
Directed by: Jason Bateman
Rated: R
Running time: 1 hour 29 mins
Focus Features

Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars

Guy Trilby (Bateman) is a man with a dream. That dream is to be named the best speller in America. And what better way to prove your skills than at the annual Golden Quill Spelling Bee? The only problem: Guy is 45 years old.

In a very strong directorial debut, Jason Bateman gives a change of pace performance as a spoiled man-child who will stop at nothing to achieve his goal. Finding a loophole in the rules, which states that no contestant can compete if they have graduated 8th grade, Bateman completely leaves behind the gentle “everyman” persona he’s made a career out of playing in everything from ”Arrested Development” to “Identity Thief.” Whether it’s convincing a fellow contestant that he’s just had sex with his mother or threatening to physically assault a girl contestant, Bateman adds a new “trick” to his overloaded bag of comic goodies.

Equally good is the supporting cast, headed up by eight year old Rohan Chand as a little boy who, despite his best intentions, ends up bonding with guy. That the boy and his father may be just as dastardly as Guy is one of the comic highlights of the film. Other strong supporting work is turned in by Kathryn Hahn as the reporter who sponsors Guy’s attempt, Allison Janey as the “Bee” overseer and the great Phillip Baker Hall as the long time educator who will stop at nothing to keep the spelling bee scandal free.

As a director, Bateman knows how to tell a story and, more importantly, how to pace the comedy so, when it’s at its best, it just flows smoothly across the screen. In a word, “Bad Words” is H-I-L-A-R-I-O-U-S!

Blu-ray Review “Bad Milo!”

Actors: Ken Marino, Gillian Jacobs, Patrick Warburton
Directors: Jacob Vaughan
Rated: R (Restricted)
Studio: Magnolia Home Entertainment
Release Date: January 21, 2014
Run Time: 84 minutes

Film: 4 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3.5 out of 5 stars

When I saw the poster for this film, I literally what “What the F*ck” and knew that I immediately had to see it. I wasn’t surprised at all that after watching this film I had the exact same reaction. An alien that lives inside of a man’s ass? It’s just so crazy that it has to work. This was easily some of the most fun I have had watching a movie all year. It is a great blend of horror and comedy. “Bad Milo!” features some quite impressive creature effects and puppet work with smartly placed CG as well. Highly recommend for anyone looking for a good time. I see this becoming a cult classic for sure!

Official Premise: Duncan’s (Ken Marino) mounting stress starts to trigger an insufferable gastrointestinal reaction. Out of ideas and at the end of his rope, Duncan seeks the help of a hypnotherapist, who helps him discover the root of his unusual stomach pain: a pint-sized demon living in his intestine that, triggered by excessive anxiety, forces its way out and slaughters the people who have caused Duncan stress. Out of fear that his intestinal gremlin may target its wrath on the wrong person, Duncan attempts to befriend it, naming it Milo and indulging it to keep its seemingly insatiable appetite at bay.

Ken Marino (“Children’s Hospital”) is at his best and really stands tall with this leading role. He is funny as well and I have always been a fan of his work since MTV’s “The State”. Only a great character actor like himself can pull off playing a guy with an alien in his ass. Patrick Warburton (“Rules of Engagement”) is always fun at playing the douche bag and he does it quite well here as Duncan’s boss. Peter Stormare (“Fargo”) plays Duncan’s hypnotherapist and is a riot as well. If that is not enough, Stephen Root (“Office Space”) plays his stoner father with a secret of his own.

The Blu-ray presentation is solid in both video and audio. The 1080p transfer is solid and works well with the creature effects. The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track works well with the jokes and the crazy antics, especially in the film’s finale. The special features are also a must watch as well. There is a great audio commentary track featuring the cast and crew. It is a must listen a great way to revisit this fun movie. There is a great interview with Ken Marino included. There are a few decent deleted scenes and outtakes. “AXS TV: A Look at BAD MILO!” is an EPK piece looking behind-the-scenes. Lastly there is a theatrical trailer included.

 

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Blu-ray Review “Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa”

Starring: Johnny Knoxville, Spike Jonze, Jackson Nicoll, Jack Polick, Catherine Keener
Director: Jeff Tremaine
Rated: R (Restricted) / Unrated
Studio: Paramount
Release Date: January 28, 2014
Run Time: 91 / 102 minutes

Film: 4 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3.5 out of 5 stars

If you saw “Jackass 3D”, then you will remember Johnny Knoxville running around in old man makeup and it was epic. When you see this title, “Jackass Presents”, you might think this to be expect just gross ass stunts and funny antics but “Bad Grandpa” is much more. The film has quite a bit of heart…mixed in with the crazy stunts and funny antics.  Jackson Nicoll adds a different level of funny and balances out Johnny Knoxville quite well who again rocks that make-up.  Fan of “Jackass” series or not, I would highly recommend checking out.

Official Premise: Jackass ringleader Johnny Knoxville reprises his role as 86-year-old Irving Zisman in the story of a crotchety old man unexpectedly saddled with the care of his 8-year-old grandson, Billy (Jackson Nicoll). The two generations of troublemakers soon develop a bond, as they hustle their way across the heartland of America pursuing hijinks and pulling pranks on unsuspecting, real-life people—all of whom had no idea they were starring in a hidden camera film.

Paramount is releasing this film in a combo pack with a Blu-ray + DVD + HD Digital Copy. It also includes two different version of the film, the 91 minute theatrical cut and a 102 minute new unrated cut with more hilarious footage not shown in theaters! This is not your typical two minute longer unrated cut, this packs some impressive new footage. The 1080p transfer is good but you have to remember that a lot of this was shot with hidden cams. The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track works ok but I had some issues here some of the talking over the louder music.

In terms of special features, the fun doesn’t stop with the film. There are eight Behind-the-Scenes featurettes including, “The Funeral”, “Estate Sale”, “Window Launch”, “Shipping Billy”, “The Penguin”, “Wedding Crashers”, “The Drop Off” and “Beauty Pageant”. There six different Alternate Reactions takes from Real People with “Meet Billy”, “Meet Irving”, “The Skype Call”, “Billy Shops for Parents” and “Irving Hits on Women 1 & 2”. Lastly there are three deleted scenes included.

 

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