Thursday, October 14, 2010

Bonus CineFiles: Lifetime revenge, Philly imbeciles and hellish torture-porn!

Posted By on Thu, Oct 14, 2010 at 3:15 PM

Most weeks, I review more DVDs than the Indy can fit into print. Starting this week, you can look for extra write-ups here, on the IndyBlog.

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Held Hostage (NR)
Image Entertainment

The Lifetime made-for-TV movie Held Hostage starts off absolutely nothing like a Lifetime made-for-TV movie: Single mom and superstar bank manager Julie Benz finds herself and her daughter at the mercy of a trio of truly despicable criminals who, after home-invading them, strap on some dynamite and force Benz to commit a slick bank heist. Once she's released, anger builds as her daughter starts suffering from PTSD and the cops are no help. You'd think she'd go all Charles Bronson on their asses and unleash hellish vengeance, right? No. This is a Lifetime movie. Instead, she lets the cartoonishly ineffectual cops do their job, testifies against the criminals and, worst of all, gives a speech about how important it is to forgive our enemies. Lame! This could have been an above-average revenge flick, but, instead, it's held hostage by its own need to espouse more touchy-feely nonsense.

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It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia: Season 5 (NR) (Blu-Ray)
20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

Why don't I find It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia funny? Everyone else seems to truly love it, but I just can't get into it. Am I the guy in the wrong here? I reviewed season four and hated it, but I am always willing to give things a second chance. With season five, I gave Sunny that second chance. And that was one chance too many. For those caught unawares, Sunny is about a handful of totally unlikable, thoroughly revolting slackers who own a bar and constantly get into all kinds of exaggerated adventures. Fans of the show tell me that this grotesque worldview is what makes the show so entertaining, but to me it just comes off as lazy, shock-value humor with absolutely no substance. Of course, I say this now, but when season six comes out, I'll watch it and review it as well. I am a true multimedia masochist, I guess.

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Necromentia (NR)
Image Entertainment

A blurb on the cover of Necromentia aptly describes it as “Saw meets Hellraiser”. I couldn't have said it better myself. Necromentia takes the most disturbing, utterly horrifying aspects of both movies, from the constant acts of skin-ripping torture to the brazenly bizarre demonic beings that are the things nightmares are made of, and creates a time-jumping ghoul-lash that makes absolutely no sense, but is constantly hypnotic to watch. And not in a good way. Three men — a chunky necrophile, a Ketamine-popping torture artist and a deaf bartender — collide, Crash-style, in the industrial-based underworld, seeking revenge through diabolical means that, to the casual horror viewer, will definitely be way too much to handle. Hell, I watch a lot of this stuff on a regular basis, and it even bothered me quite a bit. So, um, good job, Necromentia?

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