Month: February 2014

Double Feature Friday

Every Friday, as a service to your weekend’s entertainment, I will hand-pick two movies that together form a thematic Double Feature. I will also throw in a Wild Card film, should you feel like expanding the event to a Triple Feature. You’re welcome.

Double Feature Theme: “Horror Remakes Done Right”

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Wild Card:

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Info:

Saying that most horror movie remakes are garbage is kind of like pointing out that the color red is really red-looking, or that dirt has many dirt-like qualities. The whole argument… that movies shouldn’t be remade for an easy buck, because there is original content out there just waiting to be experienced… has become obvious and, frankly, exhausting. Movie studios are going to crank out remakes. They just are. Period. There’s too much money in it for them to give a shit what you think of their product’s quality… especially when there is a massive, hormonal line of dumb-ass teenagers right behind you just BEGGING to hand over their allowence money to see whatever cheap-thrills turdpile has been unceremoniously dumped into their local cineplex. Teenagers, after all, will always need a place to dry-hump each other in the dark. Theaters showing shitty horror movies fit that bill PERFECTLY.

The battle we SHOULD be fighting is not that they exist, but that they’re usually so terrible. They don’t HAVE to be. It’s not a law. In fact, there are actually some exceptions to the “horror remakes are shitty” rule, and thus… eloquently… we segue into this weekend’s double feature.

The original version of The Blob is a classic movie, but it is mainly a classic because it is just so very stupid. Sure, it’s got Steve McQueen (and, per the trailer, a cast of exciting young people!) as well as a nifty concept, but at the end of the day it’s really just a lot of people running away from slow-moving Smucker’s jelly. The remake, on the other hand is… well, ok, it’s kind of stupid too. HOWEVER, it does have one thing going for it, and that would be tons of gooey, nasty gore. Because of that… and because of the overwhelmingly 80’s vibe (Shawnee Smith’s hair alone will become, at least for an hour and a half, your reason for living)… The Blob remake is just solid gold good times.

Next up is The Crazies, a horror remake that benefits from the fact that most people don’t know it’s a remake. The original of the same name, shot in 1973, was helmed by none other than George Romero, and while Romero’s trademark social consciousness is present and accounted for, the film is a sluggishly-paced bore. Hindered further by acting that is decidedly amateurish, as well as production values that hover in the “industrial short film” range, the whole affair comes off as dull and lumpy. Not so, the late-00’s remake, which is slick as can be while still providing the requisite grimy chills. As a bonus, the updated Crazies features a pre-Justified Timothy Olyphant playing essentially… well… Raylan Givens, his character from Justified, but in someone’s internet fan fiction where Givens has to fight chemical-crazed zombie townsfolk. A little more serious-minded than The Blob remake, but still a lot of fun. The hospital pitchforking scene ALONE is worth the effort expended in watching this.

As for the Wild Card… Cape Fear isn’t a horror film NECESSARILY, but it does feature Robert De Niro in his balls-out scariest performance as a homicidal ex-con hellbent on revenge. With Scorsese at the wheel, De Niro chewing on every piece of scenery available, and Juliette Lewis damn near stealing the movie out from under everyone… the 1962 version of Cape Fear might as well not even exist.

Suggested Props:

To liven up your Double Feature experience, I recommend adding some props into the mix. For the “Horror Remakes Done Right” Double Feature, I suggest…

-Jell-O mold, preferably purple

-“Blob Shots” (spoonfuls of grape jelly floating in vodka)

-Gas masks, or, if gas masks are unavailable, scuba masks that you PRETEND are gas masks

-Sheriff badges

Suggested Extreme Props

-Sulfuric acid, so you can “melt along” with the actors in The Blob

-Pitchforks, so you can have a pitchfork duel at the conclusion of The Crazies. Last man standing gets the remainder of the Blob Shots.

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Terrible Math Problems

A few problems from my upcoming terrible mathematics textbook

#1

Timothy drinks vodka alone in his apartment at a rate of roughly one and a half bottles per afternoon. Timothy was recently fired from his job at a country club, so he has a lot of afternoons free to drink vodka on the couch while watching Judge Joe Brown. If Timothy managed to steal seventeen bottles of vodka from the country club before he left, how many afternoons of drunken bliss does he have left before reality comes crashing down upon him?

#2

Megan is on a westbound train that is traveling at a speed of 80mph, heading home to tell her parents that she has dropped out of college to follow around Arcade Fire on their latest North American tour. She has been traveling for two hours, which has totaled a distance of 238 miles. It is still 381 miles to the train station where her parents are picking her up. How disappointed will her parents be when they find out that Megan is essentially shitting on their love? Express your answer in torn up baby photos.

#3

You borrowed seven thousand dollars from Esteban two weeks ago. Esteban wants his money, but you lost it all betting on the fucking Giants to cover the spread, which they DIDN’T, because MANNING is a FUCKING PUSSY. Esteban doesn’t care how you get the money, he just wants it in his hand by tomorrow, midnight, or he will have his boys smash your kneecaps with a sledgehammer. Your family’s kneecaps as well. “All the kneecaps will be Esteban’s,” he had shouted, his mouth frothing, his nose rimmed with cocaine. If X equals the taste of fear in the back of your throat, how many miles away from this fucking city will you have to get before you will ever feel safe again?

Extra Credit

EC1 – Fractions are totally retarded, am I right?

EC2 – Spell “Boobies” on a calculator. Explain why this will always be funny.

EC3 – I bet that Megan chick from #2 would TOTALLY be down to party. Don’t you think she’d be down to party? I bet she totally would be…

The Worst/Best Winners At The Academy Awards: A Retrospective

The Academy Awards are this Sunday, finally giving our nation’s famous millionaires an opportunity to win something on TV. In celebration of these fine people achieving everything they’ve ever wanted as they enjoy success beyond their wildest dreams (unlike yourself, who had a fistful of gummi worms for breakfast), here’s a breakdown of the LEAST DESERVING winner in each major Academy Awards category.

NOTE: We’re only going as far back as 1980, here, because, as far as I’m concerned, nothing that happened before I was born matters.

The Least Deserving Winners in Oscar History (1980 to Last Year)

Best Original Screenplay: Ghost (1990)

Ghost was a massive hit, mainly because it provided a visual for our nation’s number one collective fantasy: being wrapped up in Patrick Swayze’s arms while making pottery. The screenplay itself was nothing more than a collection of goopy soap opera beats loosely tied together by a bunch of silly, ghost-related business. Plus, no dance scene for Patrick Swayze??? I don’t CARE if it wouldn’t have made sense for the character. GIVE THE PEOPLE WHAT THEY WANT.

Best Adapted Screenplay: Out of Africa (1985)

Have you ever actually WATCHED that movie? It’s 17 hours long and it literally accelerates the aging process in your body as you watch it. It LITERALLY does that. If you’re 25 when you start watching Out of Africa, you will be well into your 50’s by the time it’s over. Nothing that boring should ever be presented with an award of any kind, unless it’s an award for being the Best Nap-Maker. Which is not an actual award. I checked.

Best Documentary: He Makes Me Feel Like Dancin’ (1983)

This is the actual poster for an Academy Award-winning film. I have no further comment.

Best Supporting Actress: Judi Dench, Shakespeare in Love (1998)

Judi Dench was on-screen in Shakespeare in Love for less than 8 minutes. To give you a little perspective here, the thank-you speech she gave when she won the Oscar for that -8 minutes of screen time was in the ballpark of 4 minutes. When I become the President of Movies (should happen in the next decade or so, provided I get off my duff and finish the essay portion of my application), I will make it HOLLYWOOD LAW that you can’t win an award for a movie if you’ve been in it less than a solid half-hour. No exceptions allowed, even for knighted British fancypantses.

Best Supporting Actor: Benicio del Toro, Traffic (2000)

I’ve seen Traffic a couple of times, and… though I generally have no problem with Benicio del Toro… I simply do not understand how or why he won an Academy Award for this role. The only thing I can figure is that there was a misprint on the ballots that were sent out that year, incorrectly identifying the “Best Supporting Actor” category as “Best at Mumbling.”

Best Actress: Julia Roberts, Erin Brockovich (2000)

It’s not that Julia Roberts was BAD in Erin Brockovich… she was, you know, fine. Sassy, and whatnot. It’s just bad luck on her part that she won the same year that one of the truly great, most flawless lead performances ever given by an actress was ALSO nominated. That would be Ellen Burstyn in Requiem for a Dream. Who wins Award X at the Oscars is very often not about the actual performance (or screenplay, or ability to edit film, or whatever) itself… there’s always politics and “who’s overdue” and a million other factors. Roberts winning over Burstyn will go down in Oscar history as the most egregious example of TINSELTOWN SHENANIGANS.

Best Actor: Russel Crowe, Gladiator (2000)

Man… 2000 was a big whiff for the Oscars. This is a different version of the previously mentioned TINSELTOWN SHENANIGANS. “You really should have won last year, so… um… here’s your Oscar for that role, for THIS role! Love ya, xoxo!” Crowe was brilliant in 1999’s The Insider, but was beat out by Kevin Spacey’s deadpan suburban reawakening in American Beauty. It happens. The following year was a pretty weak one for the Best Actor category (Geoffrey Rush, for example, was also nominated for his turn in Quills; an extremely campy performance in an extremely so-so movie). And, when you factor in that people seemed to like Gladiator… C’MON UP HERE, RUSS!!!

Best Picture: Crash (2005)

Originally titled Racism is Bad: The Movie, Crash will go down in history as one of the biggest mistakes the Academy Awards ever made. Just a thoroughly terrible movie; it’s pandering, mawkish, and obvious to the point of insult. Crash winning the award for Best Picture is proof that, in 2005, the Academy voters were taken over by space aliens who really enjoy movies from the Lifetime Network, but with a higher casting budget.

Girl Drink Drunk

Girl Drink Drunk is a regular column that features your host, an adult male who prefers bourbon and beer, exploring the sugary, sweet world of “girly drinks” for your edification and entertainment. He promises not to barf on you. Enjoy

The Girl Drink:

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In the world of professional drinking, there is nothing more “training wheels” than a pre-packaged, novelty shot. Actually, they’re worse than that… novelty shots are your parents refusing to buy you a bike AT ALL, instead giving you a copy of the terrible 80’s cult classic BMX Bandits so you can watch other people enjoying bikes without hurting yourself. Your parents are THE WORST. But seriously, dated references and your terrible parents aside, the pre-packaged novelty shots are by and large the biggest jokey-joke in the booze business. What keeps them around is a combination of three factors:

-They are insanely cheap (this box of 15 full-sized shots cost me less than $20).

-They have roughly the same alcohol content as a deep breath, so people who don’t really like to drink, but WANT to drink, can feel like they’re drinking without actually drinking.

-Those that are recently of legal drinking age are dumb and will buy anything. You can sell them a Kleenex soaked in NyQuil, as long as you call it a “Party Rag.” It’s true. Try it. Go to a junior college campus with a box of Kleenex and a jumbo bottle of NyQuil. With the profits you earn, you will be able to buy, at minimum, a motorcycle.

ANYWAY, today we’re talking about the Twisted Shotz Party Pack, which I believe was originally called Regretz. The “z” is, of course, key to appealing to the youth demo in both cases. Here is a picture of the open box, clearly displaying the horrors that lie within…

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They’re like the pods that you put in one of those Keurig coffee makers, but with more implied vomit. The novelty here is that each shot contains not one, but TWO different liquors, separated… as you will see… into two compartments for absolutely no reason whatsoever. I mean, I guess “it looks totes wicked and rave-y” technically IS a reason, but still.

Here now, the contents of the Twisted Shotz Party Pack… feel free to run out and get your OWN box if you want to drink along at home. Or just mix two cups of sugar into a beer, then chug it while eating an entire pack of Skittles at once. Same thing.

NOTE: Hand-modeling credit to my wife, who drank these shots with me. RIP my wife’s trust in my projects.

Sex on the Beach

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What’s In It: Banana & Pear Liqueur (the orange stuff) and Cream Liqueur (the white stuff)

What hits you first is the banana flavor. And I use the word “flavor” loosely. Also the word “banana.” Nothing resembling actual fruit has come anywhere near the Twisted Shotz Party Pack. The taste is like one of those large, rock-hard gumballs you used to see in vending machines in K-Mart… aggressively sweet, and intensely synthetic (basically edible polyester). The Cream Liqueur does balance it out a little bit, but it also kind of reminds you of Bailey’s Irish Cream and how you could be drinking that instead of this, but aren’t. There is also a hint of pear on the finish, as well as notes of sorrow and diabetes.

Rattlesnake

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What’s In It: Tequila (the clear stuff) and Lime Liqueur (the green stuff)

To Twisted Shotz’ credit, they ARE using real tequila in this shot. Awful tequila that is BELOW bottom-shelf… the kind of tequila that can be used to remove spray paint off of cinderblock walls in a pinch… but… you know… still tequila. It makes the stuff you used to sneak into your dorm room look like the deep, golden elixir a billionaire cocaine czar sips while watching the sunset from the veranda of his jungle estate. It tastes harsh and mean, like a mouthful of rotten cactus and tinfoil. The Lime Liqueur it is paired with is almost unnoticeable, despite looking like atomic antifreeze. Tasting the Lime Liqueur on its own, I discovered that I shouldn’t have done that. If one of the Ninja Turtles were to suddenly appear and then immediately urinate directly into your mouth, it would taste exactly like the Lime Liqueur. All in all, not a fun thing to put into your face, which means it’s a total failure as a product… novelty shots are SUPPOSED to be fun to drink. Not make you feel like a cartoon character is using you as a toilet.

Strawberry Sundae

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What’s In It: Strawberry Vodka (the red stuff) and Vanilla Vodka w/ Cream (the white stuff)

Though this claims to have actual vodka in it, it still boasts only a 20% ABV. I’m not saying the makers of Twisted Shots are LIARS… I’m just saying that if this is actually vodka, then I am actually noted handsome person Ryan Gosling. Also strange… despite the aforementioned low ABV, it has a truly rough alcohol taste that burns out your nasal passages immediately upon acceptance into your pie-hole. It’s like inhaling over a blowtorch, which makes no sense, as this stuff is basically no stronger than the free mints they give out at diners.

The Vanilla Vodka w/ Cream is actually the stronger flavor here. It coats the tongue, kind of like a shitty quilt or a shitty dusting of snow or a shitty… well, it’s shitty, is what I’m driving at. There’s a little bit of strawberry taste at the end, but it is very faint. If you stabbed a strawberry to death, and it came back to haunt you as a ghost, when you woke up screaming in the middle of the night… paralyzed by the sensation that you were not alone in the room, terrified that an undead fruit was lurking nearby… the fear-taste you have in the back of your throat would be the same taste as the strawberry component of this shot. (I popped a ligament in my elbow writing that analogy; Tommy John surgery will have me on the DL for the remainder of the season)

Buttery Nipple

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What’s In It: Butterscotch Vodka (the tan stuff) and Vanilla Vodka (the white stuff)

I did not hate the Buttery Nipple. It is kind of like picking your favorite serial killer, but if I absolutely HAD to choose my favorite shot out of the Twisted Shots Party Pack… this would by my guy. It is very smooth going down; no burn, no overwhelming flavors kicking you in the teeth. It IS a little on the sticky, sweet side, but that’s to be expected. Compared to the other shots in the Party Pack, The Buttery Nipple is a good friend that wants to meet up for coffee and conversation on a chilly day. (for the record, the other shots are greasy, uncouth, strip club DJs that want to dry-hump your hip bone in a nightclub to a dubstep beat)

If you ever find yourself in a situation where you are presented with a Twisted Shotz Party Pack (I assume time travel and/or terrorism factor in to this scenario in some way) hoard the Buttery Nipples and let everyone else fend for themselves. Better to live in the gutter than in the actual sewer. I’ve always said that.

Porn Star

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What’s In It: Raspberry Vodka (the pink stuff) and Blue Curacao (the blue stuff)

Remember those frozen ice pops you used to have as a kid. NOT popsicles… ice pops. They were in little plastic tubes, and your parents could fill the entire freezer with them for like seven dollars. After you had sucked all the frozen goodness out of the tube, there was always a little neon-colored juice at the bottom, which you did like a shot, because even back then you knew that doing shots was a fun thing you’d probably like to get into some day. That juice at the bottom of the tube? That’s EXACTLY what the Porn Star shot tastes like. And here I was expecting it to taste like chlamydia or Astroglide. But nope… ice pop drippings, mixed with a few drops of nail polish remover, because CHEAP ALCOHOL.

If all the Buttery Nipple shots are taken (possibly by one of my thousands of fans who have ALSO read this post) (sorry, novelty shots give me delusions of grandeur) then go for these. Not terribly offensive, though not exactly a well-prepared cocktail created especially for you by a mixologist, either. The Porn Star tastes like something an Applebee’s bartender would come up with on a slow night. If Applebee’s served ice pops, of course.

Double Feature Friday

Every Friday, as a service to your weekend’s entertainment, I will hand-pick two movies that together form a thematic Double Feature. I will also throw in a Wild Card film, should you feel like expanding the event to a Triple Feature. You’re welcome.

Double Feature Theme: “Killer Truckers”

Breakdown-poster joyride

Wild Card:

jeeperscreepers

Info:

Breakdown and Joy Ride are both stylishly-shot, underrated thrillers regarding truckers and how they will try to kill you if you’re kind of yuppie-ish and driving cross-country. Breakdown features a vintage Kurt Russell performance, who here gives a master class in channeling middle-class privilege into man-of-action rage. Joy Ride is notable for featuring Steve Zahn in a loose, funny supporting role, as well as having a villain who is almost never seen on screen (a very different approach from the standard teen-oriented fare of the time). As for the Wild Card, Jeepers Creepers isn’t necessarily a “killer trucker” movie per se, but it does concern a similar scenario of being menaced on a road trip by a bad guy in a large vehicle.

Suggested Props:

To liven up your Double Feature experience, I recommend adding some props into the mix. For the “Killer Trucker” Double Feature, I suggest…

-Trucker hats

-Very unhealthy, road trip-style snacks; Slim Jims, mini-donuts (which ties into Breakdown), pork rinds, etc.

-Cheap domestic beer, like a killer trucker might drink

Suggested Extreme Props:

-Truck stop meth

-A dead yuppie to taunt

Terrible Recipies

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Selections from my forthcoming terrible cookbook 

Pumpkin Surprise

7 handfuls of Cool Ranch Doritos

Roughly a gallon of caramel sauce

1 can of pumpkin puree

1 smoked turkey leg from the Fair

Combine the Doritos and the caramel inside a freshly carved Jack-o-Lantern. Watch as it oozes out the eyeholes. Pretty neat, huh? Next, drizzle on the pumpkin puree. Maybe see what that feels like rubbed on your face. Gross? You bet. Put the whole mess in the front seat of your car and just drive, man, just drive. When you reach the border of the closest state, eat that turkey leg. You’ve earned it, buddy.

Farmer’s Stew

1 goat

7 gallons melted fish

Most vegetables

No salt

An unacceptable amount of paprika

Mix the goat and the melted fish in a cauldron over a roaring fire. Make witchy faces and noises. Curse your neighbor’s crops. IMPORTANT: Make sure you have a pointy hat.

Take the rest of the stuff and throw it in the cauldron or possibly on the ground. It doesn’t matter. Your stew is mostly melted fish. Also, a drowned goat, because that goat was ALIVE when you put it in the cauldron. You are a monster. But, on the upside, your curse worked. No soybeans for Mr. Johansson THIS year!

Emit long, witchy laugh. Adjust pointy hat. Fly away on broom.

Shrimp Carl

3lbs shrimp

1 large onion

1 bell pepper

Too much butter

Salt and lemon to extremes

First, chop the onion. Not like that. Well, what’s done is done. Now chop the pepper. That’s better. Not perfect, but an improvement over the onion. Your onion chopping made me physically ill. But you’re a good lad… still learning.

Now, rub the shrimp with the butter. Get it really moist and buttery. You like that, don’t you? You’re nasty.

Place all the ingredients in a pot. Maybe add water? Up to you. Heat up everything. Does it look appetizing yet? Yes? Keep cooking until it does not.

Serve with toast, or, if in season, bread.

Lo-Cal Delights

1/2 cup skim milk

1 pound butter

1 large package chocolate chips

1 jar Nutella

Bacon fat to taste

Fold all the ingredients together. Let them get all up in each other’s business. It’s like an orgy, but with less naked bodies and more food. Still the same amount of shame, though.

Spread the mixture onto baking sheets and pop them in the oven. For how long? Come on, I can’t reveal ALL my secrets.

Remove from oven eventually. Cut into squares. Eat as many as you like; they are low-calorie.

Just kidding. They are very high in calories. VERY high. Where’s your messiah now?

Gravy Meat

1 half a cow (or less, depending on factors)

13 bananas

A drum of gravy

2 peppers, hotter than the sun

Onion smashings

Cuddled eggs

Get waist deep in the gravy drum. This is your workspace now. Gravy feels good, huh? I’ve long been a proponent of gravy soaks. In fact, I’m teaching a seminar over at the Learning Annex next month entitled “Gravy in Your Shorts: A Beginner’s Guide To Enhancing Your Life With Regular Gravy Soaks.” It’s going to sell out, so get your tickets early!

Anyways, cook all the other stuff on a bonfire or something. Or order a pizza. I don’t care.

HorrorFlix

Reviewing the entirety of the Horror genre on Netflix, one movie at a time.

This week’s film…

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Relevant Cast and Crew…

Writer/Director: Noboru Iguchi

Megumi: Arisa Nakamura

Aya: Mayu Sugano

Maki: Asana Mamoru

The Plot…

Ostensibly, Zombie Ass: Toilet of the Dead is about a group of teens (or possibly adults… it’s unclear, as they appear to range in ages from 17 to 35, yet are all clearly a part of the same social circle) that get stranded in the woods and are subsequently set upon by some really yucky zombies. But what Zombie Ass is ACTUALLY about is how much writer/director Noboru Iguchi is obsessed with young girls farting. I mean… far be it from me to judge another man’s fetishes. Whatever gets you through the night, as long as it’s legal and doesn’t result in everyone needing a tetanus shot, is usually fine. It’s just impressive that this dude has managed to parlay his particular fetishistic inclination into a film career. Because, make no mistake… Iguchi is to farting schoolgirls what Hitchcock was to blondes. As proof that this isn’t just a “this movie” kind of thing, here’s a short film that Iguchi made as part of the ABCs of Death anthology, entitled “F is for Fart.” [WARNING: For the love of whatever deity you hold dear, do not watch “F is for Fart” at work. Or around any loved ones that you would still like to be able to look in the eye after the four-minute running time of “F is for Fart” is up. Or around open flames. Because farts.]

ANYWAY, the farting figures into Zombie Ass in a couple of different ways (which I believe is the first time THAT sentence has ever been written). A through-line in Zombie Ass is Megumi, the central character, and her long, surprisingly violent history with Fart Shame. Megumi is deeply ashamed of her farts, so much so that… and bear with me here… she is unable to fart on command to save her little sister from a group of schoolgirl bullies. The sister, however, DOES fart in the presence of the bullies, filling her (the sister) with so much shame and humiliation THAT SHE KILLS HERSELF.

I gather that this is maybe treading into some deep cultural waters that we, as Americans, don’t really understand. Sure, we don’t ENJOY busting ass in front of people (well most of us don’t; the Frat Bro/Hilarious Uncle populations being exceptions to the rule), but we’re also not going to pitch ourselves over a ledge if a stray toot happens to sneak out in mixed company. In Japan, I gather that they take their farts a little more seriously. If this movie can be believed, of course, and given that it’s about butt-parasites that turn people in zombies… I’m not sure it’s credibility is super duper high.

The butt-parasites would be the OTHER way that farting figures heavily into Zombie Ass. Which brings us to…

The Gore…

This is the kind of movie that you’re going to want to wipe off of you when you’re done watching it, preferably with a bleach-soaked rag. Zombie Ass takes what can only be described as a “balls to the wall” approach when it comes to gore, mixing splattery practical effects with some iffy-quality CGI to create a truly nauseating buffet of blood, guts, shit, and puke. A lot of this stems from the fact that the aforementioned butt-parasites emerge from their hosts via, well, the butt. This leads to a lot… just a WHOLE LOT… of shots of creatures coming out of flayed, gaping anuses. CLOSE UP shots, mind you. Iguchi does not shy away from the butthole in Zombie Ass; in fact, whatever prosthetic they used for all the alien-ejecting-from-some-poor-son-of-a-bitch’s-rectum scenes deserves, at minimum, fourth billing on the movie poster.

The effect, overall, is at first violently gross. After awhile though, it becomes oddly numbing. By the end, when there are characters using the tentacle-like parasites coming out of their asses as weapons, it will hardly even register that you’re watching the depraved jerk-off fantasies of a madman. You’ll be like, “Oh, an ass-parasite ate that guy’s baseball bat… ho hum… what’s next, farts-as-jetpack? Oh… yep… right on cue.”

The Wrap Up…

Overall, despite this movie having a scatological streak wider than the ocean that separates Japan from the US, and despite the movie itself being… you know… kind of dumb, I actually sort of LIKED Zombie Ass: Toilet of the Dead. It was, if nothing else, unlike anything I’ve ever seen. And it’s pretty funny! The scenes of our heroes being chased by hoardes of zombies that are crawling backwards, Jersey Turnpike-style, with butt-parasites chomping from between their cheeks is inherently pretty comical. Plus… and when you’re dealing with movies like this, it’s a BIG PLUS… the movie just zooms by. No pacing issues here, probably because Iguchi couldn’t wait to get to the next fart-based set piece.

So, if you’re looking for a movie to watch with your strong-stomached buddies while getting absolutely plastered on grain alcohol, may I please recommend a trip off the beaten path with Zombie Ass: Toilet of the Dead? You’ll be thoroughly disgusted, but you’ll also laugh your hopefully-parasite-free butt off. Megumi, take us home…

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Ten Winter Olympics Sports, Ranked By Watchability

sochirings

1. Snowboard Cross (Most Watchable)

Six people on snowboards racing down a course of jumps, banks, and hills at top speeds, trying to be the fastest one across the finish line? OH GOD YES. This is a sport where at least two-thirds of the wins are because everyone else crashed in front of you. The potential for carnage is everywhere, and could happen at any time! Last night, I saw a dude fuck up the timing on a bank, go skidding across the track, and essentially chop-block another rider. This sent them BOTH off the course in a tangle of limbs, parkas, and internal bleeding. It was AWESOME. I think they’re both dead. Or maybe not! Who cares! Either way, quality television.

2. Alpine Downhill Skiing

Watching a crazy person bomb down a mountain at 80 miles an hour will never not be entertaining. THEY’RE GOING SO FAST. And doing jumps! And turns that make my stomach flop out my butt! And occasionally they fuck something up, and it’s like watching a car crash but it’s a person, and it’s ALSO his or her hopes and dreams that are crashing. Flailing limbs. Skull bouncing on the ice. Lonesome years wasted on training when they could have been living life to the fullest with their loved ones. Nomnomnom… mmmm…aaaahhhhh… THAT’S GOOD OLYMPICS.

3. Figure Skating

Maybe I’m just a theater dork at heart, but WOW THE DRAMA. The sparkly outfits! The risk of slicing through a partners carotid artery with an ill-timed leg swoop! I also feel like all the skaters have some pretty severe emotional trauma from being raised in the pressure-cooker world of semi-pro figure skating, which is basically like Mean Girls + All My Children on ice, with a thick ladling of YOU’RE NOT GOOD ENOUGH. So that’s kind of fun to watch, too. One of these days, a skater is going to go COMPLETELY wheels-off and attack a judge with a flying triple lutz to the face. I want to be there when that happens.

4. Curling

Drink five beers, and then tell me that Curling ISN’T the most calming, hypnotic thing you’ve ever watched. It’s like being lulled into your brain’s Phantom Zone by a gentle Ice Wizard telling you about math. Plus, it’s the one sport that everyone watching thinks, “the fuck… I could do this if I wanted to; I could be a goddamn Olympian.” Then you pass out in a puddle of drooled beer, you paragon of athleticism, you.

5. Hockey

Yeah, yeah… Lake Placid… the Miracle on Ice… I’ll grant you that was a good one. However, and I recognize that this is going to be a controversial statement, but Olympic Hockey is kind of boring. It just takes SO LONG to play a game; when I want a fix of the Olympics, I want it to be quick, to-the-point, and preferably containing the opportunity to see someone get horribly maimed. Plus, I can literally watch hockey for like half the year, every year, should I so choose. The matches that determine who gets what medal are usually worth a look-see… high stakes are always good for watchability… but otherwise, PASS.

6. Snowboard Half-Pipe

Lol Shaun White. I usually don’t actively root against US athletes in the Olympics, but I made an exception for him because, by all accounts, he is a fairly epic douchelord. Plus, he looks like the dude that tried to sell me a boosted car stereo during Drivers Ed. That’s not HIS fault, necessarily, but it also doesn’t really help his cause. The Half-Pipe event itself is fine, I guess. They go up, they go down… they spin around a little… maybe flip some, here and there… pretty much it. Eh.

7. Ski Jump

I have a hard time with sports where every athlete appears to do exactly the same thing, but Athlete A is a gold medalist and Athlete B “has to be disappointed with that jump.” THEY WERE FUCKING IDENTICAL!!! I feel like the Ski Jump is rigged, with the winners pre-planned ahead of time, kind of like professional wrestling. Minus the colorful characters and pre-show taunting, of course. Same amount of skin-tight spandex, though.

8. Cross-Country Skiing

Kind of hypnotic, like curling, but also just exhausting to watch. Seeing all the skiers absolutely kill themselves in a grueling test of all their athletic mettle… ugh… it just makes me so tired… stupid jerks… being all sporty… meh, so nappish… Christ, this couch is comfortable…

9. Biathalon

The guns make me wish there were live targets, like… say… whoever doesn’t medal in Cross-Country Skiing is now “the most dangerous game.” I would watch that. I’m not a monster, I swear!

10. Bobsled (Least Watchable)

A complex, intricately technical sport that is like watching a riverbed erode. All the runs are just so same-y same. There needs to be like a ramp in the middle of the course, or like a roller coaster loop. Or maybe half the track can drop off at one point and the bobsledders have to use their weight to tip the sled up on one side, Indiana Jones/mine cart style! I would also not be opposed to the judicious use of landmines. Flame-thrower obstacles? Why not! Big dudes that jump out with chainsaws? Throw ’em in there! Basically, I’d like to see the bobsled event turn into the game show from Running Man.

Cyber-Taco

Taco Bell can’t even get my order right when I actually go inside and talk to a living, (mouth)breathing, presumably functional human being. I don’t see how adding a technological component to the ordering process is going to change things.

http://bzfd.it/1c3DT2w

I feel like this is going to end up with me, one day in the future, getting a cold taco shell filled with stubbed-out cigarette butts. I know that’s oddly specific, but it’s what I feel in my heart.

Zombie Fights Snacks

oreos

When I was growing up, an Oreo was an Oreo. Chocolate cookies up top and down below, white frosting-like goo in the middle. Decent. Proudly American. If the Oreo were a person, it would have been a crew-cut kid in the 5o’s saluting the Stars n’ Stripes and reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. Would he, so moved by the weight of the words, shed a single tear? You’re goddamn right, and it would have tasted DELICIOUS.

Something happened, though…  the world changed, I guess. That little crew-cut cookie went to college, dropped acid, and turned into a commie freak. Gone were the days of JUST chocolate cookies and JUST vanilla-ish paste. No, now it was ALL the flavors, fast and loose… the Oreo was on the make, bedding down with any wild concoction of flavors and dyes that the Nabisco-owned petrochemical companies of New Jersey could throw at it. Candy Corn Oreos. Watermelon Oreos. Birthday Cake Oreos. Each flavor more whorish and nauseating than the last.

What’s next? Draft-Dodging Oreos? Al-Qaeda Sympathizing Oreos??? OBAMA IS A MUSLIM HITLER ORE-

Whoops… whoops, sorry guys… I accidentally left the Jingoistic Nightmare Filter on. WordPress really has a lot of neat features, but the layout is CONFUSING. Anyway, so we were talking about Oreos; a fun cookie from our collective childhoods that’s now kind of in a bad headspace. Oreo has turned into such a DESPERATE cookie… everything to everybody, no identity of it’s own. With all the specialty flavors Nabisco is cranking out, and at the rate they’re doing so, I’m surprised they don’t all just taste like flop sweat. And, eventually that desperation will catch up to them. They’ll dilute the brand more and more, getting farther and farther away from what they were all about. Soon they’ll have nothing but vats of weird colored goo that was once those beloved, creamy middles, and cookies so soulless they’re practically ghosts. People will stop showing up, metaphorically speaking. Oreos will turn stale on the grocery store shelves. Plants will shut down. Millions of hard-working employees will lose their jobs. It will be just another stab wound, deep and gutting, contributing to the slow death of the American Dream.

SO WHO’S READY TO TASTE TEST SOME NEW OREO FLAVORS???

Up first…

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Oreos

I loved these… at first. Sure, they didn’t taste anything like actual chocolate chip cookie dough. They barely tasted like cookies! It was kind of like a crunchy carb-wad coated in the smell from a caramel-scented scratch n’ sniff sticker. But at the end of a hard day, isn’t that kind of all you need? The Olympics are on; lets watch a Dutch asshole kick our ass on the speed skating track, eat a fistful of these crapstacks, then zonk out for a few hours before the hellish dawn awakens us anew.

But after eating a few of them, I kind of lost interest. They were just so FAKE tasting. Picture whatever politician you like the least. Now think about him spewing forth lies about matters of policy. NOW imagine those lies are cookies. Blammo… Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Oreos.

All in all, I’d give them a C-, although I could see them being greatly improved by a dark beer, some smooth bourbon, or just a simple chaser of rubbing alcohol. Or, you know, dip them in milk. What am I, the Snack Gestapo?

Marshmallow Crispy Oreos

“Marshmallow Crispy,” my flat, unappealing ass. I bet Snap, Crackle, and Pop are absolutely FUMING about this one. There’s a goddamn Rice Krispie Treat on the package, but they don’t CALL it that… so it’s total legal. Just a big fuck you to those little elves and all their hard work. They’re totally real, by the way. Not just cartoon mascots. They’re living creatures and they’re VERY litigious. Hence the shenanigans.

ANYWAY, these cookies are a vast improvement over the Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough jobbers. I think part of it is the vanilla cookie, instead of the chocolate. I feel like maybe I’ve reached a plateau in my life where I don’t need everything to be be all chocolate craziness all the time. Sometimes just a little sweet blandness is nice. This says a lot about how I’m getting older, I guess. How we’re ALL getting older. It’s like this: You stop going out to bars all the time, and then you cut down on drinking… soon you’re fine with Friday nights at home, watching the ol’ Netflix… months go by, then years… you find yourself turning down chocolate, preferring just a small dish of vanilla ice cream, or maybe just a sugared ice cube… and then, on a night seemingly like any other, you turn on the lights in the bathroom and shriek startled, at the swollen, elderly person in the mirror, hideously twisted and ravaged by age, and you shriek even louder when you realize that person is you. THAT’S what liking vanilla over chocolate feels like. Sad and cold and lonesome. Just like how we die.

Oh wait, the frosting goo in the middle has little crispy bits of puffed rice in it! Totally forgot about that. Never mind, I’m not old. That’s like the cookie version of BASE Jumping.

I give the Marshmallow Crispy Oreos a solid B. Pair them with a cup of weak tea, a book you bought at Target, and a lap cat, and you’ve got a perfectly balanced night of zaniness, comfort, and terrifying glimpses into the void of your own mortality.