WWW: Weekend Wrental Wreviews 17

Let's see what I saw this week for Weekend Wrental Wreviews in my 17th WWW:

1) Cruel Intentions 3:
Unlike Cruel Intentions 2, which was an edited remake of the original, this is a true sequel with one loose connection to the first one(one of the main characters is a cousin of one of the characters from the first movie). Beyond that, it goes into a fairly original plot, though not a very good one, in which a girl goads two guys into a competition with each other, in which they each try to seduce a different girl already committed to someone else. It's another film about bored rich kids with few morals amusing themselves at the expense of others, with one crossing a serious line and managing to be more despicable than the other. It's not a terrible film, nor is it one in which you can root for the stars. The script is pretty bad at times, as is the acting, but ultimately it made me appreciate that I don't deal with people as cruel as those in the film, nor have I in decades. It's the better of the two sequels, but that isn't saying much.

2) Empire:
John Leguizamo heads up the cast as a Bronx drug dealer with ambitions, who makes a deal with a questionable Wall Street guy in an attempt to make a better life for himself. It's his attempt at a Scarface or a Carlito's Way, and while it obviously falls short, it's still a solid film with solid performances, especially by Leguizamo. It's yet another film that makes you realize this comedian who once had his own sketch show is just as good with dramatic acting. Throw in some twists(which the trailer would have ruined had I seen that first), some exciting gun fights, and the always hot Denise Richards, and I'm happy with the results.

3) Brainscan:
This is a film that reminds us just how bad the computer special effects were in the ‘90s, at a time when we were so impressed by them. It makes me wonder how we'll look back on the films of this decade. It's also a film that reminds us why Edward Furlong didn't become the next DiCaprio or even LaBeouf. His “acting” here mainly consists of running around screaming bloody murder in a cracked voice. It's a fun idea though, about a kid playing a video game in which the murders in the game are carried through to real life. There was real potential when he first pops in the disk and plays as a killer from a first person perspective. But this angle is soon abandoned entirely, and then he meets a cartoonish fiend known as the Trickster with a bad mohawk/mullet hairstyle thing, and then since everything seems to be taking place in real life, it's a little confusing why he has to keep putting disks into his system, which by the way didn't have any controllers now that I think about it. I was expecting Brainscan to be the horror version of Gamer, but Furlong was not controlling someone else, as the movie initially implied. In the post-Matrix age, I could see this film getting a decent remake with a better budget. At the very least, it made me nostalgic for the ‘90s and I remembered all the ads for the film I used to see in the backs of my comic books. Or, you could save an hour and a half of your life and just rent eXistenZ instead, a much better take on the whole virtual reality genre.

4) Wild Things 2:
I think I've more than learned my lesson about direct-to-DVD sequels, but the nice thing about bad movies is how little time it takes to review them. I absolutely loved the original Wild Things, and it helped that I hadn't seen a trailer and wasn't spoiled by some of the twists. And once the BIG twist happens in that movie, it's like another hour of turns just when you think you have everything figured out, and then there's this awesome montage during the credits of scenes that fill in the blanks. Wild Things 2 is more or less the same movie with a cast of no names, so there are no surprises. They duplicate one of the more infamously racy scenes from the original, and there's no point in recycling something if you're not going to at least try to improve it somehow. They even include the same gimmick with the scenes in the credits, but honestly they weren't needed for this much simpler plot. It's not the worst DVD sequel I've seen, but that's only because those others were pretty bad. Skip it.

More reviews to follow next week after I've spun a few more discs!



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