The OVA is one of those curious formats found only in Japan. Originally they were VHS tape single “episodes” of an Anime series, sold directly to consumers (for rather exorbitant prices) and generally fairly short – a half-hour to an hour. They generally had a higher budget and production values than TV animation (often rivaling […]Read more "Cyber City Oedo 808 [Saiba shiti oedo 808] 1990"
Nothing has dated as badly as computer animation. Nothing. Take Lensman, for example. It opens with what is supposed to be an awe-inspiring display of computer wizardry, with a long section of vector animation, reminiscent of the opening of The Black Hole (1979), followed by some rather crude and shiny spacecraft which not only do not measure […]Read more "Lensman [SF Shinseiki Lensman] (1984)"
You know you’re watching an independent film when the star also has writing, editing, producing and executive producer credits. Heck, for all we know, he helped with the catering, too. A young man wakes up with no memory of where he is or how he got there and immediately witnesses a murder. Moments later, he […]Read more "Time Rush (2016)"
It’s Stagecoach, in a post-apocalyptic wasteland. But then, we knew that already. It’s rather nice to see Michael Ironside in one of his rare, non-villain roles, although he is playing a tough, bad ass, anti-hero type hero instead. Well, what do you expect in a post-apocalyptic film, Mr. Rogers? Actually, when you think about it, […]Read more "Neon City (1991)"
Apparently black, full-length cloaks with cowls are haute couture for scientists. At least no one seems to notice that four out of five scientists at the huge research facility in a small town prefer them. Somehow they seemed to have missed the memo that went out to all the mad scientists after the German Expressionist […]Read more "Jellyfish Eyes [Mememe no kurage] (2013)"
In 2010, ADI (Amalgamated Dynamics) the effects company working on the prequel to John Carpenter’s The Thing, watched in horror as the film’s producers covered their practical effects with CGI (I find it somewhat ironic that the film’s DVD extras includes extensive coverage of their on-set work without noting how little of it got used!). They […]Read more "Harbinger Down (2015)"
An unstoppable being arrives in a big city and pursues another new arrival with a great deal of gunfire and violence. Sound vaguely familiar? It might be The Terminator – or, let’s face it, any one of countless other copies from the nineties. In this case, the visitors are from another world, not the future […]Read more "Peacemaker (1990)"
I liked The Maze Runner. Unfortunately I can’t say the same for the sequel. The original had a lot going for it – the mystery of why they were there and the purpose of the maze; the dangers lurking in the maze and the puzzles they had to solve to escape from it. However, the sequel doesn’t […]Read more "The Scorch Trials (2015)"
This one started out as a potential television series. And it does show. It involves a mysterious building, which somehow or other exists in untold numbers of parallel universes at once – and which allows people to cross from one world to the next, every thirty-six hours. Somehow, the mysterious “core world” created this apparently […]Read more "Parallels (2015)"
Now this is why we have Independent film! Jesse Barack and some of his college friends spent three years creating this strange little film crammed full of just about everything they could think of, from telepathic powers to evil corporations, mercenaries, armed radicals, a legendary, supernaturally powerful mushroom, clones, teleportation, reincarnation, the military-industrial complex, bodily […]Read more "Polypore (2013)"