Tag Archives: The 90s were horrifying

Cruel Intentions (1999)

Cruel Intentions

Genre: Drama

Cast: Sarah Michelle Gellar, Ryan Phillippe, Reese Witherspoon

Synopsis: Two wealthy, spoilt, and morally corrupt teenagers enter into a wager in which Ryan Phillippe will seduce the headmaster’s virginal daughter. Things don’t go to plan, however, when he finds himself falling for her girl-next-door charm.

Sometimes I wonder why it is that I am such a ho bag. Seriously, I’ve lost count of all the individuals I have had trysts with…and I’m not including that homeless guy that grabbed my ass one time. I suppose it’s part of that nature vs. nurture debate and, if I were to pick a side, I would say that it was more of a nurture thing. Why do I say that? Well maybe it’s because, at the age of 10, I idolised Buffy the vampire slayer. I didn’t want to be with her; I wanted to BE her. I wanted to be Buffy so badly that I watched everything Sarah Michelle Gellar was in so I could learn her secrets. Eventually I found myself watching Cruel Intentions. With this in mind, is it really surprising that I turned out the way I did?

Let me explain, Cruel Intentions is all about Sarah Michelle Gellar getting in touch with her bad self. Up until this film, she had only played do-gooders and likeable characters. In Cruel Intentions, she lets out her inner bitch-whore from hell and has a bloody good time doing it. She makes being a slut look like fun. How slutty does she get? Well…she propositions her step brother with something no red-blooded male can refuse.

 Butt Secks

Yes, that’s right. She offers her brother anal sex. They’re not related by blood, you understand, but it’s still pretty scandalous. I don’t remember Glenn Close in Dangerous Liaisons offering John Malkovich entry to her back passage…although they may have had a different word for it in 18th century France. So much of enjoyment can be had watching Gellar play the villain and it is obvious she really relished the opportunity to do it. She even looks as though she had fun making out in the park with Selma Blair.

It pains me to say, however, that aside from Gellar the film really doesn’t really offer much else in the way of brilliance. Despite having an impressive cast, none of them match Gellar’s ruthless charm (except maybe Christine Baranski who is brilliant in everything she is in purely because she is Christine Baranski). This is perhaps one of Witherspoon’s weakest roles and Phillippe doesn’t get naked nearly as much as he should. Moreover, the plot plods along at a rather slow pace and not enough is done at the outset of the movie to inspire empathy for Phillippe’s character. When the climax finally happened, I was rather underwhelmed. Having said that, the film does have a banging soundtrack and features instant 90s classics such as Every You Every Me, Coffee & TV, and Bitter Sweet Symphony.

All jokes about me being a ho aside, the film does offer one useful piece of advice to teenagers and young adults: it’s alright to get your baps out in private but for the love of God don’t take photos. Tara Reid learns the hard way in this movie….which is kind of ironic if you think about it….or maybe it’s just appropriate…

Tara Reid BoobsI’ll let you be the judge

High-lights:

  • Sarah Michelle Gellar inspiring me to be a cunt and a slag. Although, I do draw the line at cocaine and incest.
  • Brilliant soundtrack.
  • IT’S SO 90s!!!!! So much nostalgia.
  • Score one for the lesbians.

Downers:

  • Boring and two-dimensional characters.
  • Wealthy teenagers piss me off.
  • Disappointing climax.

Summary:

Cruel Intentions is not the sort of film that will inspire admiration and it’s not the sort of film that will make anyone’s top 10 list. It’s clunky in places and, at times, improperly thought out and executed. However, I would advise you to watch this film purely for Sarah Michelle Gellar. Although she’s no Meryl Streep, Gellar has her own strengths and her own charm which are deployed in full force here and it’s always fun to watch a movie that has a brilliant villain.

5.5/10

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Filed under Drama, Meh

The Craft (1996)

The_craft_movie_poster

Genre: Horror, Drama

Cast: Robin Tunney, Fairuza Balk, Neve Campbell

Synopsis: Four misfits wearing slutty Catholic school uniforms develop magical powers but shit goes awry when they use their powers for personal gain

Now this is a blast from the past! I remember when I was a teenager, channel 4 used to screen this movie at least twice a year and every time it was on I would watch it. As such, this film is my ultimate guilty favourite and, when I saw it was on Netflix, I just had to watch it for the blog. The plot is simple enough: a beautiful girl moves to LA and falls in with a group of creepy misfits who turn out to be witches. They do all sorts of crazy spells to improve their lives but one goes crazy and shit gets out of hand and then all notions of sisterhood fly out the fucking window. As you can see, it’s not a particularly complex or challenging plot. What makes this film enjoyable to watch though is that perfectly sums up everything that was both good and bad about the 90s while also throwing in some trippy visuals.

So, what about this film is so 90s? Well, for starters, Neve Campbell. Is there anyone who defines the 90s teenage experience better than Neve Campbell? When I was living in LA I had lunch with her once….and by ‘with’ I very much mean we were in the same cafe and she was sat at a different table while I was eating sesame seed bagel because I was broke and that’s all I could afford. At the time I was struck by how beautiful and 90s she was! It was as if I had stepped into some sort of time warp. If I had ventured outside I am sure I would have seen people dressed like Clarissa from Clarissa Explains it All. Anyway, my point is that Neve Campbell exudes 90s teen glamour and any film with her in gets the 90s seal of approval.

This film will force you to reminisce about a simpler time, a better time; a time when people used to wear neon spandex cycling shorts as every day wear, fantasize about Skeet Ulrich and say things like “damn girl, you a phat bitch!” That 90s teen slang right? Who cares! Anything can be 90s teen slang if you say it while wearing an ensemble that can only be described as catholic schoolgirl meets heroin addict.

In fact, I think this is actually what The Craft is about: addiction to drugs. Magic becomes a metaphor for heroin in this movie and everyone knows that heroin was to the 90s what coke was to the 80s. All these girls do is lock themselves away in their rooms and then do crazy shit like drive through red lights and talk about how Mannon is inside their veins! I assume Mannon is a code word for smack. Watch this film again and see for yourself how easily ‘magic’ can be replaced with ‘heroin.’ A lot of their so called ‘spells’ might not even be the result of magic but coincidence. For instance, the guy who got hit by a car in this movie got hit by a car because he ran into the road holding a snake, not because of magic. Neve’s scars went away because her treatment worked, not because of magic. The bitch’s hair fell out because she had alopecia, not because of magic. This movie just goes to show you that smack addicts will believe anything that they want.

High-lights:

  • My 90s childhood came rushing back to me.
  • Some trippy scenes like when Nancy walks on water and talks about how dead sharks are her gifts. To be honest, I’d be a little pissed off if someone gave me a dead shark as a gift.
  • “Who’s your daughter now?!” What?
  • Awesome 90s soundtrack. Whoever decided to use ‘Glorybox’ by Portishead was a genius.

Downers:

  • Total chick flick.
  • It actually becomes quite depressing when you realise that they are all on drugs.
  • Occasional bad 90s special effects…although the scene where Nancy walks on water was pretty good.
  • Corny ending.

Summary:

At its core, this movie does have a good message: don’t get addicted to heroin. Sure, use it recreationally but don’t become obsessed in the way Fairuza Balk does with her great white shark-like mouth. Seriously, this girl has a huge mouth. All jokes aside, this is a fun movie and one that’s very easy to get into and one which will keep you entertained. Sure, it’s never going to be included in IMDB’s top 250 (and nor should it) but it’s one of those movies which will allow you to turn off your brain. Just don’t turn it off so much that you begin to think that a needle full of sweet Georgia brown will make all of your problems disappear. Repeat after me people: drugs are bad! Now excuse me while I take a rip from my bong.

7/10

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Filed under Drama, Good, Horror

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie (1995)

Power_rangers_movie_poster

Genre: Kids, Action/Adventure

Cast: All your favourite whose names you can no longer remember…there’s the red one and then the blue one etc.

Synopsis: This is essentially a bad 90s exercise video with a random British jungle bint, purple goo, and animal ninjas.

Sometimes I like to look back on some of the things I loved as a kid. Often, I will become all nostalgic and remember why I loved that thing so much. Other times, I will think to myself: “what the fuck was I thinking?” Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie falls into that latter category. Fortunately, wisdom comes with age and with wisdom comes the ability to detect scam artists. This movie is an hour and a half long commercial in which sexy, young, and athletic California teens hock activity gear like roller blades and parachutes but deride shitty toys like tubs of purple goo which do nothing. I guess it’s a noble effort but the end result is so hysterically bad in a 90s kind of way it’s hard to take it seriously in today’s world.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I loved Power Rangers as a kid. In fact, the blue Power Ranger was probably my first real crush….a fact made even more depressing by the fact that the actor who played the blue ranger sent himself to a “Pray-Away-the-Gay” camp. Yeah, he did. Fortunately he came to his senses so if you’re still single blue ranger then hit me up. Anyway, looking back on it all, I can’t remember what the Power Rangers was actually about. Was is all about a bunch of hot 90s teens fighting monsters alongside an alien face and a retarded robot? What the fuck were the bad guys? The film didn’t really clarify anything and, in fact, it made things a lot more complicated by having the Power Rangers travel to a distant planet to speak with some woman with a jungle bikini and a British accent in order to connect with spirit animals. Suddenly, they’re all ninjas and in the background I can hear parents groan about how they’re going to have to waste their money on another piece of shitty merchandise.

It’s sad to think that there are movies out there which get made purely to sell toys. The GI Joe movie is an example, as is Batman and Robin. However, the funny thing about Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie is that it kind of does its toy-selling pitch in a self-hating way. Although it shows the fun of owning a pair of rollerblades as well as punching people who look different to you, it also warns kids about the dangers of buying things which do fuck all and turn you into slaves to the man. Having said that, as a kid I probably would have wanted a tub of purple goo and would have bugged my mum to get it. I guess the message didn’t really work on me.

High-lights:

  • Reigniting my passion for the blue ranger.
  • I’m sure the villain says: “You’ll be shitting wings in the morning.” I guess weed doesn’t improve my hearing.
  • The Power Rangers has this vaguely Japanese feel to it and I started to reminisce about all sorts of good Japanese cartoons which were similar in one way or another….Sailor Moon, Cardcaptor Sakura for example.
  • I wonder what my spirit animal would be.
  • Why are they fire hosing a bunch of kids?

Downers:

  • The soundtrack sounds like it was written by Trey Parker and Matt Stone.
  • The acting is shocking.
  • The movie kind of encourages you to be aggressive.

Summary

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie is the sort of movie you should watch with a group of friends when you’re reminiscing about how great the 90s were and you all need a serious reality check. The 90s were an awful and confusing time between the go-go 80s and the unrelenting terror of the millennium and the dot-com age. Still, when I have kids, I’ll force them to watch this so they can learn about the hardships of growing up before Adventure Time and before Studio Ghibli became popular in the west. In the meantime, 90s shows and their movie counterparts still hold pretty good comedy value so I can’t score this film too harshly.

7/10

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Filed under Action/Adventure, Good, Kids