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Showing posts from October, 2012

Empire Magazine Greatest Movies List - #370: Rocky

Say what you want about Sylvester Stallone’s career (and you could say a lot) but he did manage to create one of the most inspirational movie characters in sports movies, or in movies in general for that matter: Rocky Balboa. Of course everyone agrees the first movie is the best of the Rocky anthology as it shows Rocky at his weakest, before the fame, the legend, and the fights with Mr. T, Hulk Hogan and Dolph Lundgren. On the other hand, every one of those movies gave exercise enthusiasts some of the best workout montages ever, making “Eye of the Tiger” the song of choice for joggers.
Not that I am a hardcore fan of the Rocky series, but I have seen every movie except the second one. Each movie has a varying degree of popularity, but they are not very difficult to find. I rented the first one from a rental store (a nearly extinct institution) while in college in 2004, only for the movie to play on TV the very next day. If you have access to a movie channel that plays old or classic m…

Empire Magazine Greatest Movies List - #371: Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

I once read a magazine article in which producer Jerry Bruckheimer said that when it comes to story ideas, movie writers look everywhere. This includes newspapers for real life events, books, investigative articles in magazines, TV show and yes, even video games. However, when he supported a project based on a Disneyland ride, people must have been a little skeptical. Yet low and behold, the first entry in the “Pirates of the Caribbean” franchise surprised everyone by becoming of the biggest hits of the summer of 2003. It resurrected a dead genre, and introduced the world to Johnny Depp’s Academy Award nominated performance as Captain Jack Sparrow, the Keith Richards-like scoundrel of the seas with a taste for rum.
This was one of the many big movies I saw in the summer of 2003 after moving back to Canada, following an eight-year stay in South America. Since all movies are released on different dates in South America, this was the first I got to see all big studio movies released one a…

Empire Magazine Greatest Movies List - #372: Army of Darkness

I imagine sometimes it must be great to be Bruce Campbell. Sure, the man has made so many cheesy fantasy movies he ended parodying himself in “My Name is Bruce,” but in the late 80s and early 90s he starred in one of the funniest horror comedy series of all times: The Evil Dead. The first “Evil Dead” was a straight horror film that told the old story of kids being haunted in a cabin in the woods. “Evil Dead II” essentially remade the first movie but with a healthy injection of humor and upgrading Campbell to full-fledged action hero equipped with a chainsaw. “Army of Darkness” closes the loop with a bigger budget as Campbell now finds himself stuck in the Middle Ages with his BOOM STICK!
I actually watched the entire trilogy in reverse, starting with “Army on Darkness” when it was playing on the ScyFy channel (of course), then “Evil Dead II” at the film club I attended at the University of Sherbrooke and then renting the first “Evil Dead” at the video store. As with most trilogies the …