Goddamn that comma that somehow creeped its way into the title of my last post! Curse all the commas that were!
Goddamn that comma that somehow creeped its way into the title of my last post! Curse all the commas that were!
Last time. Stuff blowed up. Other stuff didn’t blowed up. And now the conclusion…
Last time: Dolph Lundgren met Brian Benben, who acted like a massive dick, and the two discovered that rap music is killing people. Also, the greatest Christopher Lambert role to ever not be played by Christopher Lambert. Let us continue. Read More
You’re travelling through another dimension, a dimension not of logic or reason, but of testosterone and beef jerky. A journey into a trash-littered wasteland whose boundaries are that of reality and sense. That’s the Twilight Zone reference that’s been done to death and will continue to be done to death for generations – your next stop, the Dolph Lundgren Movie!
Seriously, though, all joking aside, this guy is a beast! He has a Master’s in Chemical Engineering, and got a frickin’ Fulbright to study at MIT for crying out loud! And he can still kick my ass any day of the week. The point here, is, if I ever go heavy with the “dumb muscle” jokes in the coming paragraphs, please do NOT take that to heart, because Dolph Lundgren gets massive respect points from the 90-pound dumbass that is me. That, and for having the balls to be in Masters of the Universe. See that movie, and you know he’s not afraid of anything.
So that brings us to Dark Angel, or I Come in Peace, depending on where you’re from, a movie sent straight from late-80’s action land, starring Ivan Drago and that dork from Radioland Murders, two cops with opposing personalities who must learn to work together in order to take on a bigger threat. The threat being an alien. An alien who kills people by turning their brains into drugs. With that, I’m fairly certain I have singled out the people who will stay here for the recap.
This movie was directed by Craig Baxley, who would go on to make a buttload of TV movies and direct-to-video projects. So if movies with titles like Chameleon II: Death Match or Raven: Return of the Black Dragons are your thing, then by all means, go for it. In the meantime, I’ve stalled enough, so let’s get started, shall we?
So the movie begins with a car driving down the dark grimy streets of Lundgrentown, USA. It’s in the middle of this long drive to Expositoryprologueville where the man in the car decides he wants some music in the movie, and so acts accordingly. However, the music doesn’t get to play long before it starts going haywire. This is also a golden opportunity to give the audience the valuable exposition that this man paid $70,000 for the car he is driving, which in this type of movie basically amounts to paying $70,000 to be violently murdered. Sure enough, the CD he’s playing actually ejects from the player, and so this man decides that the logical course of action is to put the CD straight back, leading to narrowly avoiding collision with a bus up ahead, losing control, and landing in a remote area within the woods. And people still have the gall to text while driving!
After this whole fiasco, the man’s first words are, “Merry fucking Christmas!” thus confirming that if you get tired of Die Hard or Lethal Weapon, then you have another option to get your explosive Christmas fix. After some confusing editing involving some alien explody thing falling on the unfortunately priced car, we discover to our horror that the CD has been burnt to a crisp! Great, now an actual composer is needed for the movie! Emerging from the wreckage is Christopher Lambert’s deformed half brother, declaring, “I come in peace!”
Cut to yet another Hollywood bank, where a robbery is about taking place, in claustrophobic air-vent locations that serve to remind the viewer that he’s not watching Die Hard. Also cutting in between these scenes are other scenes of a cop who looks suspiciously like Billy Secord from Ninja III: the Domination. And I’ll just leave it at that, as I’ve said more than enough about that guy. Secord is called to room J-38 by the intercom, but it’s actually the robber using technology to corner and kill him, in order to complete his disguise. One that will probably be a little less effective once the dead body is discovered, but okay.
The next two minutes are spent with this guy joining up with his partner and waling out of the police station, at which no one bats an eye, because no one here really knows each other as anything more than extras hired by Craig Baxley. I’d like to think that this whole charade was some weird fourth wall joke, but I know such subtlety is not to found in this movie. As the two guys leave with their designated driver, the smug one reveals that he rigged the building to explode, so as to get rid of potential witnesses. So far there have been two major scenes in this movie, and they both ended with explosions. Did Michael Bay ever see this movie as a kid? Just for the record, all of this was to steal some weed. Where else do you think the writers got it?
Finally, Dolph enters the picture! He’s outside in his car, listening to an undercover operation being carried out by his partner. Great, the guy we came to see and he’s not even involved in the action. The guys from earlier soon enter the picture, having gotten the weed that their boss had asked for. It turns out that this operation involves exposing a crime boss by pretending to be an underground buyer. Hilariously, said crime boss wastes a lot of time talking about his education, and when he asks Dolph’s Black Partner (the only thing you need to know about him) where he was educated, he responds, “The University of Suck My Dick!”
Meanwhile, yet another robbery is taking place at a convenience store right across the street, though this one carried out with significantly less grace and finesse. Unable to ignore the chance to show off some kicks on camera, ol’ Dolph leaves his post to go layeth the smackdown on these losers. Well, one loser anyway, before taking his gun to intimidate the other guy. Meanwhile, Evil McBusinessman reveals that he is well aware that the current deal going on is a charade, and he proceeds to shoot Detective Ray Turner, just as Dolph is done laying the other thief full of lead. Oh, and the drug he was selling was heroin. Not that I’d stop calling it weed, anyway.
As the mobster group disbands, the Lambertian comes on the scene (in “peace”, of course), shooting out his compact disc of death, leading to some pretty cool POV shots from the view of the flying disk as it slices the throats of these rich lowlifes. Just as Dolph is done clearing out the other bad guys, the Lambertian finishes taking the “weed” for himself and blows up the last guy to oblivion. Dolph sees the explosion and dives in to investigate. He sees all the dead bodies scattered around, leading directly to Dolph Lundgren trying to act sad at the loss of his friend. It’s not Reb Brown laugh out loud hilarious, but it’s pretty funny nevertheless.
As the cops appear on the scene, Dolph’s superior briefly consoles him, before launching into an expository tirade about how Dolph has disappeared for the past eight days. And plus, he kinda fucked up the whole “expose Victor Manning (the asshole businessman)” thing. For all this, Dolph is forced into taking an eight-week vacation. So his punishment for not showing up for work is being forced to no show up for work?
A certain Detective Switzer wants to talk to Dolph in private, so they go into the bathroom, where they force a fellow cop to leave after his piss without even washing his hands! Is this private matter really worth the potential spread of germs and disease? It turns out Switzer believes (correctly) that the men were not killed by conventional weaponry, and tries to work with Dolph, but Dolph just brushes him aside with the excuse that he’s on vacation anyway, so he can’t help. Cue cutting to Switzer forcing the chief to give Dolph’s job back. Exactly what made Switzer interested in Dolph’s help anyway? I guess this means Dolph is good at his job, but whatever, Dolph Lundgren, need him to kick ass, go with it.
So Dolph is introduced to his “partner”, Larry Smith. He introduces himself with, “I’m the youngest man ever to reach my rank at the bureau, I make twice as much you do and it’s for good reason, so don’t even start that shit with me.” Well, with that statement, you kinda just started “that shit” yourself already, so shit’s gonna happen anyway. Larry continues to be a massive dick when explaining what the parameters of the case are (both actually explaining the parameters and telling Dolph what “parameters” means. Ugh!). Meanwhile Dolph’s girlfriend brings us the incredibly useful information that the weapon used to murder the men before is “razor thin and razor sharp”. Such technical terms, too!
Dolph tries to make up with Diane, who was worried about his eight-day disappearance, but she’s having none of it, because this is an 80’s movie (actually, it was released in 1990, but it’s essentially an 80’s movie), and women live to antagonize men. Anyway, we finally to get the buddy-cop stage when Dolph and Larry’s personalities and work styles start to clash. Which consists of Larry being annoying while Dolph kinda just stands there, occasionally making some witty comebacks. Basically, Brian Benben is there to make Dolph look likable in comparison. Tough job.
Meanwhile, in a completely unrelated location, a shithole full of poverty and disease (okay, so maybe not entirely unrelated), an explosion leaves various holes in several walls of a rundown building. It’s another Lambertian, this one apparently NOT having come in peace. Not that there’s been a difference so far. Back with our dynamic(ally inactive) duo, Brian Benben is busy measuring the length of the chairs in the scene of the crime, because that will most certainly reveal the weapon and culprit responsible for the murders. He goes on a tirade about how he does not believe in instinct, and every one of his actions is a learned reaction. Dolph, of course, asks what would happen if something completely new comes up, to which Benben admits he would be stuck. This whole conversation makes me marvel at how much Dolph Lundgren looks and sounds like Nathan Fillion in this movie.
Cut to a man watching It’s a Wonderful Life, only to be interrupted by his “goddamn worthles leg-humpin’ piece o’ shit dog”. Hey, I know it’s a good movie and everything, but your dog has feelings too, you know! He tries calling the dog in, but when he receives no response, his first action is to grab his shotgun and shoot at anything that moves. Immediately following the previous scene where Dolph was talking about instinct, this is pretty funny. He goes chasing after the supposed “fuckin’ greedy asshole burglar shithead” (seriously, does this guy ever refer to anything using two words or less?), only to find that it’s a bit more extraterrestrial than expected. The Lambertian (the one who “comes in peace”) uses some alien syringe to inject some fluid in the old geezer.
Meanwhile, Dolph takes Benben to a nightclub, where he meets up with his “old pal” in between gratuitous shots of female partial nudity. Dolph asks the git where Victor Manning is by holding his gun up to his crotch. This doesn’t really lead anywhere, because the thugs all believe that the cops were the ones who killed the men earlier. Benben sarcastically remarks how much was gained from this exchange, but Dolph just shrugs, saying he came here to think anyway, before sumbolically rolling a cue ball into a pool table pocket. Because that helps him think.
Actually, the cue ball helps as an analogy for Dolph to explain that he thinks the weapon used may be a projectile rather than a blade. He goes through a hypothetical scenario in which the supposed projectile travels around, ricocheting off people and walls, until it lands on the stereo, which is exactly where the compact disc of destruction is. Benben, initially skeptical of a CD’s murder capacity, tries to get it out, only for the disc to fly around and cause more destuction. Dolph’s action one-liner? “Now that’s a murder weapon!” Eh… okay.
So we cut to a parking garage, where another bystander is listening to some pretty awful rap music describing some ugly woman, doing whatever it is that city management does this late at night. Needless to say, he quickly gets killed by the peace-loving Lambertian, who after injecting the fluid, is shown extracting some other liquid from the man’s head. The other Lambertian comes in, too, after this is done, and shoots at the first Lambertian, who starts running, an action which is predictably uninterrupted by a fairly decently sized explosion taking place RIGHT BEHIND HIM. The ensuing chase through the garage is really putting me in a Highlander mood. Basically, it’s shooting, and lots of cars blowing up. It’s pretty fun.
The second Lambertian leaves, as it apparently understands the concept that attempted murder is pretty frowned upon in human society. That’s a step towards getting the gist of what “peace” is, I guess.
So what is the Lambertian’s motive for destroying people’s brains? Will Dolph and Benben finally figure out what the audience has already known basically from the beginning? Will Betsy Brantley ever get more than two lines in a movie? All of these questions are answered next time, in the Dolph Lundgren Movie.
Yeah, yeah, I know. I promised a movie this week. However, some things came up, stuff screwed up, and so you’re getting more Sailor Moon. However, I promise that I will recap a movie next week. I am eager to take a break from Super S too, you know. Especially after an episode with a title as riveting as “Hearts that Communicate! Chibiusa and Pegasus”.
The episode begins in another one of Chibiusa’s dream sequences, in which Chibiusa asks for Pegasus to interact with her more, because she wants to be friends with him. His response is simply, “I can’t do that.” And Chibiusa instantly accepts his answer and calls it a night. If this scene was a pencil, it would be useless because it has no point whatsoever.
As usual, Zirconia is chewing out the Amazon Trio for their failures. While she is re-iterating the importance of capturing him, Tiger’s Eye questions what would happen if the owner of the beautiful dream in which Pegasus is residing finds out about Pegasus’ power, and “she tries to do whatever she wants with Pegasus.” His words, not mine. Hawk’s Eye replies that if someone with a beautiful dream discovers how much power she possesses, her dreams will become corrupted into something ugly, and Pegasus will have to leave, thus explaining why Pegasus will not open up more to Chibiusa. That actually makes a lot of sense, and it’s nice to finally have SOMETHING about Pegasus explained for a change.
Following this illuminating discussion, Tiger’s Eye calls upon his shadow, Hebihanabiko. Since she is a shadow, like Pegasus, if she can sneak into Pegasus’ body, she can instantly find out who Pegasus is hiding in. It makes no sense, really, but the fact that Tiger’s Eye is actually changing up his schtick a bit is something to be appreciated. Also, Hebihanabiko can steal hearts or something. So she’s pretty dangerous and stuff. Of course, if this episode is like anything before it, this will all lead up to nothing in the end.
Meanwhile, we finally get to Chibiusa painting scenery for art class. And she’s wearing Groucho Glasses. Because. When her teacher comes to inspect her work, she says that it is to impersonate a painter she saw on TV the other day. So this painter gets inspiration from wearing cheap Halloween costumes from Party City? Her teacher says that although Chibiusa’s picture is very good, she cannot give it a good grade because the assignment was to simply paint the landscape, but Chibiusa added Pegasus in there. Chibiusa’s friend Kyuusuke Sarashina points out that this incident explains why their teacher is still single. It’s nice to know that Chibiusa hangs out with people who are just as likeable as she is.
The teacher, Ms. Morino, laments how horrible she is at handling children. This is a lot of words and exposition for “she’s the next target”. Tiger’s Eye tries to pass on this job to his colleagues, but they both decline, Hawk’s Eye because Ms. Morino “doesn’t make his heart race”. So if the next target was a defibrillator, it would be right up Hawk’s Eye’s alley! Fisheye declines because, you know, he’s gay. Tiger’s Eye ends up thinking that this is better, because he will receive all the credit for Pegasus’ capture anyway.
As Usagi and Chibiusa are busy going home from shopping, Usagi bumps into Ms. Morino. As Usagi jokingly tries to ask how much of a demon Chibiusa is, Morino replies that Chibiusa is popular, and can easily makes friends, to the point where she herself is jealous. As Ms. Morino is walking by, sulking as usual, she bumps into Tiger’s Eye, incredibly subtly disguised as a… guy who rescues worrisome women from their worries. Is there a name for that? Well, “counselor” works, but anyone who would stay in a room for more than 30 seconds with a “counselor” dressed like Tiger’s Eye is either stupid or David Bowie.
So Ms. Morino explains her problems to Tiger’s Eye, saying that she has always wanted to be a teacher, but now that she is one, she has no idea how to interact with her students. Tiger’s Eye’s solution to her problem is, of course, to attempt to get it on, with the same desirable results as always (desirable for Ms. Morino, anyway). So Tiger’s Eye reveals himself in record time. Meanwhile, Usagi and Chibiusa are picked up by Sir Onelineanepisode Mamoru Chiba, before hearing screams in the distance. And the commercial break.
After the break, Tiger’s Eye manages to peek at Ms. Morino’s dream surprisingly uninterrupted, and comments on how beautiful it is. Of course, nowadays, “My dream is that kids will like me,” means different things entirely. Of course, Usagi and Chibiusa’s transformations are not that far behind. Best of all, their “in the name of the moon” speech claims that teachers are “everyone’s friends”. Yeah, right.
The ensuing battle is incredibly lame, with Tiger’s Eye throwing some dull things like whips and knives at the duo, before being assaulted by Tuxedo Kamen, all in less than 10 seconds of screen time. So with himself cornered, and Chibiusa about to call out Pegasus again, Tiger’s Eye finally calls upon Hebihanabiko to capture Pegasus by inserting her head into his body. It’s only seen from a distance, by the way!
As Pegasus appears to be turning to stone, Chibi Moon also spaces out, as Hebihanabiko is now inside Chibiusa’s dream, having finally found out where Pegasus is residing. The shadow Lemure attempts to sway Chibiusa by offering her ownership of Pegasus, but she finally refuses because she wishes to be friends with Pegasus, and getting him to do everything out of obligation would be pointless. Good girl, Chibiusa, you tell her! With this declaration, Chibiusa regains control of her dream, and Hebihanabiko is forced out.
So one extended Moon Gorgeous Meditation later, Sailor Moon and Tuxedo Kamen are more than a little curious as to what exactly happened with Chibi Moon. However, the previous scene was a little too much plot for this particular season to handle, and it’s brushed off. More importantly, we enter Ms. Morino’s dream, where she is encouraging imagination in her adoring students. Back in the real world, Ms. Morino asks why Chibiusa submitted her picture with Pegasus inserted in it. Chibiusa responds that it was to capture her initial feeling that the scenery suits the presence of a Pegasus. Although Ms. Morino laments that she cannot give her picture a good score, she privately tells Chibiusa that she really liked it.
Back at home, Chibiusa notices an urn that appears on her windowsill. This is a weird communication device thing which can allow Chibiusa to communicate with Pegasus whenever she wishes to. When Chibiusa asks for Pegasus’ real name, he refuses to tell her, but Chibiusa doesn’t mind, because they can take their time now and become friends.
This episode is really darn good. And while it doesn’t exactly advance the plot per se, it genuinely feels like something is accomplished by the end, something which I sadly cannot say for most of the previous episodes. The major downside here is that the subplot with Ms. Morino is not particularly interesting, and doesn’t even really feel needed beyond providing the Amazon Trio with a target. However, its strengths mostly outweigh its shortcomings. Said strengths largely lie, somewhat surprisingly, in the relationship between Pegasus and Chibiusa, which reaches a level of depth that has not been seen as of yet, and unfortunately will not be seen often again as we go through the rest of the season. This episode actually offers a viable explanation as to why Pegasus has not been displaying much character in the past, nullifying a lot of my “Pegasus is bland” jokes in the past few weeks, something which I always encourage. It sets up potential development between him and Chibiusa very nicely, and to add icing on the cake, offers Chibiusa a rare crowning moment of awesome. I can safely say that this is the first episode in a while that really feels impactful. But alas, it is not to last.
But we can keep these positive feelings hanging for now, because next week, I start a movie review, and will actually follow through this time! Until then, have a very happy new year, and work towards your resolutions!
Edit: Damn, I misspelled quite a few words that first time. Not that I don’t usually make spelling errors or anything, but that was ridiculous! It’s slightly less repulsive, now.
One may notice that this post is not exactly feature length. That’s because apparently WordPress is against my publication of content. Basically, the story is, I had just finished my post for this week, and published it. Then, suddenly, when I decided to check up on the blog, it turns out that the post was not appearing on the site. Baffled, I checked up to see if it had been posted, and there is apparently no record of this post having ever existed at all. In other words, all of my writing over the past week has been for nothing! Of course, I should probably inform any potential readers of this tragic occurrence, because not doing so is kind of a dick move, hence the existence of this paragraph. I apologize for this event, and I hope that things will turn out better next week. Until then, happy new year, and get working on your resolutions!
Update: Apparently WordPress doesn’t actually hate me, but is a really big troll. It turns out that the post took several hours to go up for some reason, but in that few hours, there was no trace of anything at all. I think I might go insane. But yeah, it’s up now. So there.