May 8th, 2008

BLOOD MONKEY (2007) ½ *

Note to self:  Stop taping crappy killer animal movies off of The Sci-Fi Channel. 


Another note to self:  Don’t watch anymore low budget Congo rip-offs.  Especially ones that were made 12 years after the fact. 


Further note to self:  Put a moratorium on ANY movie featuring a killer animal’s red tinted POV.


Yet another note to self:  Quit watching movies where all the characters are annoying teens who incessantly videotape everything.


Additional note to self:  No more F. Murray Abraham movies.  Ever.  I don’t care if he was in Amadeus.  Just stop. 


Hey self:  Stop viewing movies filled with people who talk in unintelligible accents.  Even if they do have moments of fairly decent gore. 


Another note to self:  Remember, no matter how bad the movie you are watching is, always give it at least half a star if it features a scene where killer monkeys urinate Super Soaker style onto their prey before attacking. 

MANHATTAN (1979) **

Okay I’m going to admit that I’m not the world’s biggest Woody Allen fan.  I highly enjoyed his early stuff (especially What’s Up Tiger Lily?, Bananas and Sleeper), but when Woody stopped being goofy and started doing movies like Manhattan that were filled with whiny, self confessional, seriocomedic ramblings about life, love and fidelity, he totally lost me.  It is said that Manhattan is Allen’s least favorite of all his movies.  I can’t say I really blame him.


The plot has an out of work writer (Allen) ditching his hot, seventeen year old girlfriend (Mariel Hemmingway) in order to hook up with his best friend’s ex-girlfriend (Diane Keaton).  When they get back together, Allen has to begrudgingly go back to his underage tart.


Although the plot is woefully thin, this could’ve worked if Allen remembered to put some jokes in here and there.  Sadly, Manhattan seems more like a black and white Lifetime Movie of the Week than a Woody Allen comedy.  The performances are adequate for the most part.  Allen yet again basically plays himself and Hemmingway is pretty good as his girlfriend, but it’s Meryl Streep who gets the best scenes as Woody’s lesbian ex wife. 


It’s not very good, but at least you can have fun spotting how Woody’s art would later end up imitating his life.  (Woody falls in love with an underage girl, his ex writes a tell all book, etc.)