Thursday, July 22, 2010

Major League 3: Back To The Minors

I found this purely by chance as I was clearing out my garage a few weekends ago.
In the garage, under a whole pile of boxes was a box labelled "videos."
I've been living here for nearly 3 years now and pretty much forgotten about this box.
Go back 4 years and you would have found me at the local video store with my fiancee and future father-in-law, picking through the piles and piles of old videos they were off-loading at $2 each.
My now wife is a big baseball fan. Playing it, watching baseball movies. She just loves it.
So I bought this, remembering how much I enjoyed the original film.

I brought the box inside and opened it to find this little gem sitting on the top just begging to be watched.
I also found the Matt Salinger Captain America movie, Plan 9 From Outer Space, High Fidelty, and Doc Savage: Man Of Bronze, all on VHS. But those are blogs for another day.

Here's the movie poster.

Gus Cantrell (Scott Bakula) is the main character of this movie. He retires from professional playing and decides to manage the South Carolina Buzz.

Here we have Roger Dorn (Corbin Bernsen), who is one of only a handful of original cast members to make an appearance in this straight-to-VHS release.

Harry Doyle (Bob Uecker) is also one of the originals.
He has some pretty funny scenes too.

Not returning for the third installment is Ricky "Wild Thing" Vaughn (Charlie Sheen).

Willie Mays Hayes (Wesley Snipes) also opted out of appearing here.
I've read about a Major League 4 being batted around the studio, so who knows? Maybe we could see these two make a comeback. I'd certainly enjoy it.

Replacing Sheen & Snipes are the following actors, all with different skill levels and "handicaps" which make for the premise of humour.
Billy "Downtown" Anderson (Walton Goggins) is the lead player for the Buzz, and the central player for this movie.
I was surprised to see Goggins name in the credits as I enjoyed his work on The Shield, and also in Predators.
For the most part Downtown is an enjoyable character and Goggins does make the story interesting for the viewer.

Another Shield cast member is Kenneth Johnson, who plays ex-ballet performer Lance Pere.
Johnson seems out of place in this role, and his attempts at humour often fall flat.

Playing Gus Cantrell's love interest is Maggie Reynolds (Jensen Daggett).
We see her at the beginning of the movie, not wanting to be tied down to Cantrell by way of marriage.

Here's another view of her. She also played Nancy in the TV sitcom, Home Improvement.
Maggie is a likeable character, but that's about it for her.

Leonard Huff (Ted McGinley) is the major league manager of the Minnesota Twins.
He also plays the rival to Gus Cantrell's minor league team, the South Carolina Buzz.
McGinley is his usual comedic self here, and it works. He's arrogant, but you can't help be enjoy watching him make an ass out of himself.

The bad boy of the Minnesota Twins is Carlos Liston (Lobo Sebastian). He has a extremely bad temper, and an ego like you would not believe.
And it works very well in this movie.

Here's the trailer.

All up I'm admit this venture doesn't hold a candle to the first two Major League movies, but if you're wanting to check it out for curiosity, by all means track down the DVD and/or video.
Major League 3: Back to the Minors
Major League 3 : Back to the Minors [VHS]

While you're at it there's also the CD soundtrack.
Major League 3

I give the movie a 4 out of 10. It's meant to be a comedy by the humour doesn't stand the test of time, and most often than not falls flat.

What did you think of this review? Please comment, or email me directly at
Until next time!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Yes Man

I wanted to see this movie in the cinema, but didn't.
My wife isn't really a Jim Carrey fan where as I have been ever since Dumb & Dumber.
Have I seen all his films though? No.
Obviously I've now seen his 2008 film, Yes Man, as here is the review.

Here's the movie poster
And here is the movie trailer

Now I know that Jim Carrey has successfully branched out into serious roles, but this movie was promoted as a comedy. When I hear "comedy" and "Jim Carrey" I think of his previous movies like the aforementioned Dumb And Dumber, Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, and Liar Liar.
Yes Man could've been a real comeback to Jim's comedic days, showcasing the comedy of old, the comedy for which we've loved seeing him perform again and again.

Yes Man offers less of this comedy.

And more of this comedy....

Yep, that's right. There's a fair amount of singing in this movie.
Now I don't know about your tastes, but I hate singing in a comedy. Hate it with a passion.
A lot of the times a song will be put into a comedy simply to eat up time. To extend a movie by an extra 5 to 10 minutes.
A song can also be put in simply because the writers have run out of jokes.
It's a risky thing to have singing in a comedy. If your audience aren't fans of the song, or simply do not know the song (which was my case in the scene above), then you're going to lose them.

Thankfully the film is filled with interesting, entertaining actors playing the roles of Carl Allen's (Jim Carrey) friends and co-workers.
Here we have Nick (John Micheal Higgins), who pulls Carl out of his rut and has him attend a "Yes" seminiar. What Nick doesn't realise is that Carl is so desperate to change his life he starts saying "yes" to everything.

We also have Carl's best friends Peter and Rooney (Bradley Cooper and Danny Masterson respectively). For the most part they play safe, and fun supporting characters.
Rooney has some particularly funny scenes.

I remember reading an article about how supposedly Bradley Cooper stole each scene he appeared in with Jim Carrey. I disagree.
Bradley Cooper was okay in this movie. I dislike Bradley Cooper though.
He irritated the shit out of me in The Hangover (a movie I downright hate anyway), and in subsequent movies I haven't really "clicked" with his characters.
And Bradley's pretty much played the same character is every movie he's appeared in.

For me, the character which stole the scene in every scene was Carl's boss Norman (Rhys Darby). Norman is just so pathetic, but you have to laugh at his enthusiasm.
Surprisingly this was Rhys' first movie. He has since gone on to appear in The Boat That Rocked, and The Flight Of The Concords.
If Rhys keeps up with this quality of work I foresee big things for him.

Another delight to watch is Carl's love interest, Allison (Zooey Deschannel). Allison is a fly-by-night, unconventional character who doesn't like to be weighed down by society's conventions. Zooey is such a professional actress that you don't feel Allison to be annoying in any way.
Again, if she keeps up this quality of work... Big things my friends. Big things.

All up I give this movie 4 out of 10.
It could've been a lot better, but it wasn't. It was certainly funny in parts, and certainly very unfunny in others.
Am I glad I saw this movie now? I'd have to say "yes."

What did you think of this review? Please comment, or email me directly at
Until next time!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Bryan Cranston to play The Riddler?

This blog is going to be a little bit different to what I've usually brought you.
This time instead of reviewing a movie, or bringing you a celebrity interview, I want to put to you my belief of Bryan Cranston as the Riddler in the upcoming Christopher Nolan-directed Batman movie.

Fans of Bryan will know him well as Hal, the father in Malcolm In The Middle.
He has also had a recurring role as Dr Tim Whatley in Seinfeld, and can currently be seen as Walter White in Breaking Bad.

Malcolm In The Middle certainly showed Bryan's comedic skills. It also provided Bryan with the chance to show us many of his other acting abilities.

This broad range of skills would certainly come in handy for the role of Edward Nygma.
The Riddler is a complex character. Both a criminal genius with a hand at problem solving; looking at situations in a way others wouldn't.
The Riddler is also compelled to tease his victims and would-be captors with clues to solve the riddle he sets before them.

This aspect, along others, is especially shown in Breaking Bad, as evidenced by this clip.

With the previous Batman movies Christopher and his brother Jonathon Nolan have shown a knack for providing a realistic twist on Batman, his supporting cast, and his enemies.
With this in mind I think The Riddler is an almost perfect fit into the story formed in the aforementioned films (Batman Begins, and The Dark Knight).

I have read on various forums on people's opinions as to whom should be the villain in the third film. And subsequently who should play said villain.
This blog is not for that.
This blog is simply to put forward my belief, and ask that you at least consider this option.

You're thinking about it right now, aren't you?

Well now, what do you think?
Please comment, or email me directly at
Until next time!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Into The Blue 2: The Reef

I'd been meaning to see this movie for a while now, having been a fan of the original.
Once I found out that Laura Vandervoort was in this movie, I really wanted to check it out.
Laura played the role of Kara in Smallville. For fans in the know, Kara is Supergirl.

This alone was my reason for seeing this movie. Well, initially.

Here's the movie poster.
And here's the trailer

Now, um.... Where was I? Oh, that's right. I'm meant to be reviewing this movie, aren't I?
Laura Vandervoort plays the role of Dani.

I seem to recall there being a plot about her and her husband scuba-diving for undersea treasure....

Sorry. Now you've lost me.
Give me a minute here.

Okay. Here's Chris Carmack, who plays Dani's husband, Sebastian.
Chris actually has some real acting talent and I could certainly see him landing more acting roles.

Or he could always land his wife. Growl.

Along for the ride are Sebastian and Dani's friends, Kimi (Mircea Monroe) & Mace (Michael Graziadei).
Kimi & Mace actually bring to the movie a nice little side-story. She's in love with him but he won't commit. It makes for a nice change of pace to what could otherwise have been a standard treasure hunt movie.

A big drawcard for this movie is the scenery. And I'm not talking about the beach (although that is nice).

Funding the treasure hunt is Carlton (David Anders), and his assistant Azra (Marsha Thomason). Carlton might not look like much but check this out...

Yep, he's the bad guy in this caper.
If you want to check the movie out for yourself I'm sure the local video store can get you a copy or you could make the purchase here.

Into the Blue 2: The Reef

Being a straight 2 dvd release there is a bit of a stigma about it however by the end of the movie I was glad I watched it. The direction is very good, as is the camera work.
The story doesn't fall flat and neither does the acting.
As written above, I could easily see these actings going on to other roles, and much success.
Because the movie surprised me in being something other than a cheap perv at girls in bikinis, I give it 6 out of 10.
What did you think of this review? Please comment, or email me directly at
Until next time!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Interview with... Erica Hosseini

Next up in my line of celebrity interviews is award winning surfer, Erica Hosseini.
Fans of Erica know her for her massive skills on a surfboard, and even modelling in front of the camera.
This interview has some VERY interesting news about the upcoming X-Men: First Class movie currently underway, from direction by Matthew Vaughn (Kick Ass). Read on.

1. What attracted you to the world of surfing?

- I grew up on the beach my entire life, so it was just a natural fit that I would eventually start surfing. And I was an extreme tomboy with an older brother that I was very competitive with, so it was inevitable.

2. What has been a career highlight for you, in terms of surfing?

- I was the NSSA National Open Women's Champion and won the Governors Cup.
- I broke the world record and became the youngest amateur surfer to ever make a pro final at the time.
-I have won ASP Jr. Events and Other Pro Contests... Some are bigger than others, but they are all equally gratifying and 'highlight moment.'

3. You've also done some modelling work. What can you tell us about that?

- Yes, I'm been fortunate enough to market myself in the surf industry to my sponsors. They have utilized my looks in various advertising campaigns, and have been recognized to be not only a surfer but a model. It's extremely flattering, and I love it, but it would have never come without the surfing and at the end of the day, that's what I love the most :)

4. According to your twitter account, and you're auditioning for a movie role in Matthew Vaughn's X-Men: First Class. What can you tell us about that?

-Yeah, I just went in for a reading for the new XMEN Movie: First Class... I was extremely nervous and reading my lines the best I could. But I have absolutely no acting experience. I really hope that I get a call back, but I'm not holding my breath.

5. Can you give us any details as to the role you are auditioning for?

-I was auditioning for a role named Willow (hopefully I don't get in trouble for blabbing details on the off-chance that I get it). It's a role similar to Mystique from what I understand. Potentially lots of body paint, so that would be really fun.

6. From this it seems you're wanting to break into films. What would be a dream movie role for you?

- It would be cool to break into the film industry, but I'm not going on auditions and trying for a career change. If the opportunity comes I will with out a doubt accept it.... but it has to be the right fit. My dream movie would probably be some super hero action film, with a crazy costume. That just sounds really fun! I love stunts, so i would want lots of action :)

So there you go guys. You read it here first, there'll be a completely new X-Men character in the upcoming movie, X-Men: First Class.

I sincerely hope Erica lands the role as she's incredible nice, and works very hard at everything she sets out to achieve. I mean, just check out those surfing records!

Please be sure to check out Erica's website, where you can keep up to date with all her going's on. It's a terrific site.

What did you think of this interview? Please comment, or email me directly at
Until next time!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Interview with... Cat Taber

You guys know I love providing Star Wars-related interviews, yeah?
The bigger the character, the more kick I get out of it.
Now, for me you can't get much bigger than the voice of Padme Amidala from Star Wars: The Clone Wars.
It is my very great honour to bring to you my interview with Catherine Taber.

1. How would you compare voice acting to your on camera film work?

I actually approach them the same way. Its more about the particular genre for me than whether it is voice or on camera. Whether its Sci Fi, Comedy, drama is where the differences come in, my performance is otherwise really the same. And now with motion capture and the other technologies coming in to play, the two are blending together even more.

2. Do you enjoy voicing Padme Amidala in Star Wars: The Clone Wars?

I am a BIG Star Wars fan, so I was thrilled to get the opportunity to play any part in the Star Wars Universe, but Padme is especially meaningful to me because I just love the character so much! She is regal and feminine, but also can be tough and very strong. And she has a real integrity and purity to her that I love!

3. What can you tell us regarding that experience and the overall experienceworking with Lucasfilm?

Many people working for LucasFilm are big Star Wars fans, so you meet and work with other folks who really love what we do, and who feel a real responsibility to the fans. Also, George Lucas can and does hire the best of the best - the most amazing artists, designers, animators, sound people, directors and producers. So I am always amazed that I get to work with the level of talent I do. And truthfully, I think we all feel like we are some of the luckiest folks on Earth to have such cool jobs!

4. If you don't mind my saying, you're quite attractive. What has the fan response been like at Star Wars and comic conventions?

No I don't mind and Thank you! Conventions have been just wonderful. Star Wars fans are the best fans in the world and I really enjoy getting to meet them. And it means a lot to me to get to hear how much they are enjoying our work!

5. I've read that you are a huge fan of science fiction. What is it thatdraws to to the genre and has it always been that way?

I think that the theme of good verses evil that permeates much of sci fi and fantasy is what draws me in. I just love stories where people must rise above their own fears and fight for something bigger than themselves. And I am fascinated by exploration, adventure and "other worlds" - whether they are in space or faraway lands such as "middle earth". And maybe it is the Irish in me, but I just love all things magical...especially elves!

6. Many people don't realize it, but when they sit down to play theirfavorite video games, from Star Wars to Avatar to Final Fantasy, X-Men, andeven the new Metal Gear, you are the voice of so many popular characters. How would you describe your experience working in the video game world anddo your film/TV fans ever mention that they recognized you in a video game?

Absolutely! A lot of people contend that in the last several years video games have started to generate more money than movies and television combined. My fans generally know me from Star Wars AND my games. The games are often their first experience with my work. I really love video games and have had amazing opportunities to really stretch as an actress in doing them. I often have huge scripts and dramatic story arcs that I get to play with...much meatier roles than you would normally have a chance to dive into in TV and movies.

7. People refer to you as the "Geek Goddess". How did this start and how do
you feel about it?

I am quite happy to be the Geek Goddess! I guess, as you can tell, many of the things I am drawn to have been classically considered "geeky" - sci fi and fantasy, you know. I think Sci Fans are often the smartest, coolest and most creative people around, so I am more than happy to be a part of that world. I not sure where the Goddess part comes from, but hey, I will gladly take it!

8. Just Like Heaven was a surprisingly good movie, and much different fromthe roles you are better known for. Did you enjoy your time on set and howmight you describe that experience?

Actually, when you look closely Just Like Heaven has a science fiction/fantasy thread running through it as well, so its not really as far off as you might think! I had a great time working on that film, Mark Waters the director is such a fun guy, it was a VERY happy set. And I enjoyed getting to work with Reese Witherspoon, she is one of the best actresses of my generation for sure and just a true professional.

9. What's coming up next for you?

Well, I just finished a really cool short film, where I played a rookie lawyer who is not exactly what she seems. And Metal Gear Peace Walker just came out, which is super exciting. What another amazing franchise to be a part of! Kojima is... well...he's a god (I am winking here for all the Metal Gear gamers out there!). Right now, I am gearing up for some summer travel starting with Comic Con International next month in San Diego and then Celebration V in Orlando. And I am really looking forward to Season 3 of the Clone Wars this fall! It is a pretty busy few months coming up...I hope the Force is with me!

I hope it is too, Cat.
Thank you very much for taking the time for this interview.
Please check out Cat's website at it's awesome.

What did you think of this interview? Please comment, or email me directly at
Until next time!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Interview with... Jacob "Stitch" Duran

When you think of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, and especially when you watch it, you know you're going to see the toughest of the tough.
It was recently my great honour to interview the ultimate cutman, Mr Jacob "Stitch" Duran.
I hope you guys enjoy reading this interview, because I had a ball conducting it.
Big thanks to Stitch also. He's quite simply, a top bloke.

1. UFC competitors seem to be making major headway into TV & film. Why do you think this is?

I think it is because MMA has become such a big sport and the fighters in themselves have become quite the personalities. They are badest fighters in the world and yet the nicest guys in the world. I think the age group 18-35 are major movie fans and to have MMA fighters in movies and TV roles is attractive to the viewer.

2. What if your opinion on the difference between UFC and WWE, and why do you think UFC is surpacing WWE in popularity?

I think the UFC is drawing major ratings compared to WWE because of many things. First, the ZUFFA has done a tremondous job in marketing the UFC and the fighters. Also, I think the fans love the real action that the UFC fighters brings to the octagon. Not like WWE, you never really know who is going to win a UFC fight. All it takes is once punch, kick or tapout to change the outcome of the fight. Do not forget that these warriors are also the nicest guys and will always have time to spend with the fans. You can have the biggest names like Randy, BJ, Chuck, George, etc and they will spend time and talk to the fans, sign autographs and take pictures at any moment.

3. What is the appeal of the UFC?

I think the appeal of the UFC is pretty simple. The UFC and the fighters have made this game so successful because every show, every fight and every moment to include the weigh-ins are a show in itself. Not like boxing where the fans show up for the main event, in any UFC event the fans show up for the first fight. Like every fan, I still get exited every time I work a UFC event.

4. What has been your greatest experience with the UFC?

I think my greatest experience in the UFC has to be every moment when I enter the dressing room to wrap a fighters hands. At this moment I know I am going to make a difference in the fighters confidence knowing he is getting ready to do battle. To receive a hug from the fighter knowing that his confidence level has grown means alot to me. Moments like when Lyoto Machida won the world title from Rashad Evans. I go into the dressing room after the fight to congratulate him and in front of his proud father he says, "In the ring, you are my father". Moments like these are what make my job so rewarding.

5. What was it like on the set of Rocky 6?

Let me tell you that this is one my proudest moments of my career to play myself in the Rocky movie. I remember the moment I received a call to be in the movie. I was making arraignments to work with Audley Harrision in London. I told them that I could not be in the movie because I was working a world title boxing fight in Paris, France and then the next week I was working with Audley Harrision in London. When I called my wife at work and told her I was offered a part in the Rocky movie she got all exited. When I told her I could not do it because of my commitment to these two fights she told me I was crazy and that I had to do the movie because Rocky is such an American Icon and it was a great opportunity for me. After thinking about it for about 30 minutes I realized my wife was right so I explained to Audley my opportunity and he understood. Turned out that the fight in France got cancelled anyway. Somebody is looking out for me!
Working with Stallone, Pauli, Antonio Tarver and just being part of the movie is still a mind blower for me. Stallone said he wanted me in the movie because I seemed like a natural and for me do what I normally do during a fight. He gave me very little instructions and at the end of the filming was very grateful.

6. What would be a dream movie role for you?

I have been involved in 3 movies, Rocky Balboa, Oceans's 11,(where I was Wladamir Klitschko's cutman) and Play It To The Bone with Woody Harrelson and Antonio Banderas. To be part of these movies and play myself was such a great experience and like all the work I have done in boxing and MMA I have never asked for one job. The opportunities have somehow come my way. I am not a actor nor have I ever said I am, but if I had a chance to pick a role for myself I think I would like to be a cop in a high action movie.

7. What’s coming up next for you?

Working as a cutman has always been my dream. Moving to Las Vegas 15 years ago to follow my dreams was a gamble in itself. Working with the best fighters in boxing and MMA I have had the chance to travel the world and meet so many great people. Having sponsors like TapOut and Xyience I have been able to participate in autograph signings and TapOut has even made me my own Stitch Signature Shirt. I am working with Tapout and will soon be coming out with "Stitch By Tapout" corner supplies. Working with TapOut we will be able to supply cornermen and fighters with the best equipment required to work and train. The tape and KO Swell should be coming out soon with the other equipment coming later. I will also be coming out with a book of my life called, "From The Fields, To The Garden, The Stitch Duran Story. Zac Robinson is the author and the book should be ready by the end of Sept. I am looking forward to it and hopefully we will be doing a book signing close to your home.

8. Is there an event or charity you would like to bring to our attention?

Maarten, you asked some very good questions and I want to thank you for thinking about me regarding this interview. In closing I want to say that I have been blessed to be in the postion that I am in. I always had a dream to be the best cutman in the world and thankfully I have been given this opportunity. Of all the great experiences that I have been through people ask me what I would like to be remembered for. I think I would like to be remembered as a guy who helped change the sports of boxing and MMA by bringing education to the sports. If I can pass my knowledge to other trainers, cutmen, fighters and even the fans I will feel that the sport will become better and safer.

Big thanks, once again, to Stitch for his time and enthusiasm with this interview. It's very much appreciated, and I wish him all the best.

What did you think of this interview? Please comment, or email me directly at
Until next time!