Aisle of the Damned: 07/21/17- Matthew McConaughey, Giant Dwarf

Monkeying Around

Get yer Kong on with the Damned boys as Kent and Bryan wage War for the Planet of the Apes. How does the end of what is kind of a trilogy in an eight (or is it nine?) movie series fare? And how far did Bryan have to go to see it? Plus, Kent takes a quick look at Sophia Coppola’s new film, The Beguiled.

In addition, we have some silly news that we make fun of and a buttload of trailers for everything from The Disaster Artist to Goon: Last of the Enforcers!

All this and less on Aisle of the Damned!

The Aquabats- Stuck in a Movie
The Vandals- Ape Shall Never Kill Ape

Aisle of the Damned: 06/16/17- Atomic Batteries to Power

Who's the monster?

We’re back for more punishment from Tom Cruise’s to-do list. Actually, we talk 2017’s new version of The Mummy after a discussion of the Aubrey Plaza vehicle The To Do List sparks a little conversation over 90’s nostalgia.

Before we talk about the Dark Universe though, we talk about the legacy of the great Adam West of Batman: The Movie and so much more.

All this and less on Aisle of the Damned!

The Aquabats- Stuck in a Movie
Nelson Riddle- To the Batmobile
Nelson Riddle- Hi-Diddle Riddle
Link Wray and his Ray Men- Run Chicken Run

Aisle of the Damned: 4/28/17- In Space, No One Can Hear You Say “Family”

family family family family

In our latest episode, Kent deals with all sorts of ne’er do wells with the cannibal import Raw, the very Lovecrafty chiller The Void, the Scottish pricks of T2 Trainspotting and the deviants behind Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. Then Bryan joins in for a discussion about the 8th(!) film in a series that started with a decent Point Break remake: The Fate of the Furious.

We also discuss some Marvel and Transformers news and take a look at some new trailer drops like Atomic Blonde and Thor: Ragnarok. Oh, and a little movie called Star Wars: The Last Jedi. 

All this and less on Aisle of the Damned!

The Aquabats– Stuck in a Movie
Me First and the Gimme Gimmes– I am a Rock

Aisle of the Damned: 4/7/17- Mighty Morphin’ Wrist Cutters

What about Ranger Smith?

It’s a passionate discussion this episode as we tackle some news dripping with Sony’s flop sweat. They’re working on a stand-alone, R-rated Venom movie. Meanwhile, Warner Bros. has been talking to Joss Whedon about making a full-blown Batgirl film.

More importantly, we discuss the American remake of Ghost in the Shell and the big-screen adaptation of the ’90s kiddie kaiju show, Power Rangers. (Or is that Saban’s Power Rangers? Might depend on how you feel about adding “John Carpenter’s” to the title of films.)

We also discuss a slew of summer and fall trailers that have come out since the last episode. How are the studio marketing teams trying to sell us the biggest and smallest films of the season? Don’t forget our regular recommendations. All this and less on Aisle of the Damned!

The Aquabats- Stuck in a Movie
They Might Be Giants- Sensurround

Aisle of the Damned: 03/22/17- Logan’s Heroes

This is the worst photoshop you will ever see.

We’re back after a medical hiatus to discuss the latest that Hollywood has dumped on us! Just kidding; March apparently doesn’t suck anymore as we have some pretty damn good movies to geek out about, including X-Men outlier Logan, giant monster movie Kong: Skull Island, indie horror wunderkind Get Out and the latest in the Matt Damon series, Matt Damon Goes to China.

We also discuss some new trailers, like Wonder Woman and Baby Driver, finally crap on the Oscars, talk about Joe Carnahan’s good decisions and Sony’s stupid-ass decisions and talk about Disney’s battle with their own history.

All this and less on Aisle of the Damned!

The Aquabats- Stuck in a Movie
Big T. Tyler– King Kong

Aisle of the Damned: 12/24/16- A Baywatch Nights Christmas

Simply Red, Standing By

It’s the holidays and with so many Hassels to Hoff, we’re glad you found time to listen to our little duo.

We recommend some holiday viewing and talk about a new batch of trailers (Fate of the Furious, John Wick 2, Baywatch, etc.) Then we move on to some new movies: Moana is classic Disney, but what does Bryan think of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, not being a Harry Potter fan? Then we tackle the latest Star Wars “anthology” film: Rogue One. How does it compare to Episode VII? Is Alan Tudyk the best voice actor in the industry? Why does Tarkin look like he has way more liver spots than he did in New Hope?

All this and less on Aisle of the Damned!

The Aquabats- Stuck in a Movie
The Vandals- Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairies

Aisle of the Damned: 10/17/16- Tim Burton’s X-Men

Tim Burton's X-MenDisney is weird and we talk a little bit about their current remake process as Kent discusses the new version of Pete’s Dragon, along with some other theatrical features like Morgan, Blair Witch and Tim Burton’s latest, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.

We also discuss some films for the season with the “Bad Robot” restoration of Don Coscarelli’s Phantasm and the blu rays of Conjuring 2 and 10 Cloverfield Lane.

Oh yeah, and we have our recommendations and our commentary on Paramount screwing the proverbial pooch again with Star Trek Beyond.

All this and less on Aisle of the Damned!

The Aquabats- Stuck in a Movie
Dave Gardner- Mad Witch

Aisle of the Damned: 7/6/16- Social Networkland

They had it coming.

Kent and Bryan are limping through a summer of unrequested sequels and retreads. We discuss the way a lot of sequels have been failing at the box office and which films have bucked the trend. We also give our top entertainment picks for this month, discuss the implications of the Ultimate Batman v Superman cut and also the 180 that Warner Bros. has pulled on Justice League. Later, they talk The Conjuring 2, Finding Dory, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows, Central Intelligence and the long expected follow-up, Independence Day: Resurgence.

Come and sequel, won’t you?

The Aquabats- Stuck in a Movie
The Lillingtons- Invasion of the Saucermen

Aisle of the Damned- 07/31/15: LeBron Leaves the Tune Squad

Then You Will Have My Permission To Drive

In a flurry of catch-upedness, Kent and Bryan bring us up to speed on movies they’ve seen over the summer including Mad Max: Fury Road, Jurassic World, Terminator: Genysis, Ted 2, Trainwreck and Inside Out. But not before discussing our favorite theaters and our disappointment in Disney for announcing that Avengers: Age of Ultron will be out on digital download a full month before blu ray. Plus, random segues into Lebron, Buffy: The Vampire Slayer, the virtues of Jurassic Park III and more!

You’ll laugh. You’ll cry. You’ll mostly cry.

The Aquabats- Stuck in a Movie
The Offspring- Bad Habit

Kent’s Damned Movie Reviews: Muppets Most Wanted

Two frogs, no waiting

Muppets Most Wanted is a worthy follow-up to the characters’ 2011 comeback film and it starts right where the last one left off. In a strange opening, it is implied that the last movie was the film version of the story of their reunification. This isn’t unheard of in Muppet-dom, of course. It is reminiscent of the revolutionary framing device of the original Muppet Movie when the whole crew gathered to watch a film based on the story of their origins.

Leading into a song about making a sequel (and the law of diminishing returns), it is not the last time in the film that they make self-deprecating and effective references to the prior film, including a perhaps deserved jab or two at Walter, the Muppet introduced in the last film that wisely takes a backseat in Wanted so the spotlight is back on Kermit and Co. This film isn’t his story and the filmmakers understand that, not trying to force him into the proceedings more than is organic. It’s great seeing this kind of continuity built into the Muppet films, allowing them to build on each other even as they change in tone and focus.

Whereas the last film did a great job taking its cues from the original Muppet Movie, the new film feels like a retread of The Great Muppet Caper. In this way it reminds me of Star Trek Into Darkness; it feels unneeded and smacks of wasted opportunities to try something new, but it is too well made to deny its quality. The most positive change may be the introduction of the fantastic villain Constantine, aka the world’s most dangerous frog. With his awful Russian accent and penchant for blowing up everything in his path with a detonator (not to mention maliciously punning his way through Kermit’s catchphrases), he is not only effectively evil, but hilarious. He beats the hell out of Charles Grodin.

In a lot of ways, the sequel feels like a very confident statement from James Bobin and company that they feel they’ve survived trying to live up to the Muppet legacy and now they get a well-deserved chance to play around. The film doesn’t have the same heart as the previous outing. We don’t have anything like the relationship between Walter and his brother (Jason Segal doesn’t even cameo this time out) or the effectiveness of Kermit’s reunions with his old comrades in harms. Instead we get what may be the funniest 90 minutes yet featuring the characters. At times it comes across as more of a classic spoof movie than the type of Muppet films we got last time, sort of like if the Zuckers had used Kermit for the main character in Top Secret. There is a joyous absurdity to the film that carries across it from start to finish, only interrupted (as usual) by the obligatory Miss Piggy song. Though even that has more kick than usual and includes one of the most delightfully horrifying visuals ever put in a family film.

In addition to that, Bret McKenzie puts together what I feel is an even stronger set of songs which manage to continue the comic energy of the film rather than pull it back, something he is excellent at given his pedigree in Flight of the Conchords. He deftly maneuvers from one song styling to another and keeps them short and sweet.

As for the humans in the movie, the one that comes off best is probably Ty Burrell as a Cluseau-like inspector for Interpol. This is partially because of the writing, partially because of his chemistry with Sam the Eagle and especially because of the great writing poking fun at European work norms. Ricky Gervais also does well as Dominic Badguy (“It’s pronounced Bad-gzhee.”) Tina Fey is surprisingly the one that seems a bit out of her depth in comparison, never hitting quite the right tone in her role as a Gulag warden. That said, she still manages to elicit some good laughs when she finds her rhythm.

As someone that doesn’t find sentiment particularly enticing, it’s surprising that I actually find the film not quite as good as its predecessor. I would guess perhaps some of it was the element of surprise over how well it had turned out and some of it is definitely related to just plain how long it had been before we’d gotten a Muppet movie that good. Sure, their takes on Treasure Island and A Christmas Carol weren’t exactly slouches, but unless you’re a member of the generation that grew up on them as kids (and I know a few), they don’t tend to be seen as classics. The Muppets was pretty darn close. Muppets Most Wanted is not quite to that level, but darned if it isn’t a great time.

(Three and a half damns given out of five)