Sunday, October 17, 2010

Raw Deal

(Moe Note: I just want to take a quick moment to state that this will likely be my last review for a while, My Lady Jill, whom you may remember from several of our podcasts she was involved in, was recently Diagnosed with cancer and I want to devote myself to her treatment and being there for her. She's gonna need a lot of help and my weekly allotment of movie time will likely slip away for a while. Once she gets better I will resume watching and writing, but till then keep her in your thoughts and we'll do our best to work through this - Moe)

Holy Shit! After being years since the one and only time I've ever seen Raw Deal I decided to revisit the title to see if it lives up to my memory. This, you may already know, is a lofty goal and many a film fail. Raw Deal does not fail in any sense of the word. In fact it manages to bend my childhood over and rapes it in only the most tender and caring way you can when dealing with fully automatic weaponry. 

I oft forget how much I loved Arnie before his recent political career. Thankfully we have a catalog of old awesome action films to remind us. Sadly though it's pretty easy to forget flicks like Raw deal when you have the insane classics like Predator, Commando, Total Recall, The Conan Movies and of course, Jingle All the Way. With those ever so quotable films looming on your pop culture referencing minds it's easy to skip over a flick like this which really only has one really quotable line “You shouldn't drink..and bake”. There are others, but that's really the best one.

Raw Deal is the story of a disgraced FBI agent, Kaminsky, played by Arnie. All we know is that Kaminsky enjoys punching people in the face enough times to put them in the ICU. He's now the sheriff in some podunk hick town where he still manages to fit in a daily car chase and yet is bored to death. His wife is a drunk, she apparently drinks and bakes. Darrin McGavin offers him an opportunity to play mole and one man army all at the same time. He is to implant himself into the Chicago mob syndicate and take them out from the inside. You see, they were responsible for killing off McGavin's son and he no longer cares to stay within the realm of the law. No one knows Kaminsky is there except McGavin. I don't see any way that could possibly go wrong, right? Regardless it hardly matters because the second he';s found out he kills the only people that know and initiates his attack plan on the mob. The Climax is so brutal and violent you will giggle like a little girl and any little girls unfortunate enough to have seen this will have a nice couple days growth on their face and talk a few octaves lower. It's that powerful!

Kolchak is an emotional powerhouse
Here's the thing though, Raw Deal has easily one of the best stories of any Arnie flick. It's pretty shallow, but not as shallow as his typical fare. Darren McGavin also gives the film a much needed touch of class. There's a scene where he's telling Arnie that his son was killed and the director made the right move in keeping the camera on McGavin's face instead of cutting to Arnold's reaction. Darrin McGavin is what we like to call in the ACTOR and with this particular skill set he manages to make the film slightly more believable. Be thankful for this too because without him Raw Deal is just another generic 80's action flick with decent violence. Raw Deal would still stand out though, it has some of the best comeuppance I've seen on film in a long time. The bad guys get it real good like!

Imagine these guys...only dead
Raw Deal is as cathartic as film gets. It has everything you need for pure satisfaction; a great story, great violence, a shitty tacked on love story, sarcasm and amazing comeuppance. In fact, how this film doesn't top the list of Bosh's favorite films is beyond me, except maybe that it's a little too well known and wasn't direct to video. It will forever remain a mystery

5 out of 5

Drink up, I've got movies to watch

P.S. - If you've never seen Kolchak: The Night Stalker, do yourself a favor and watch it. It's amazing television.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


A few thoughts run through my mind as I stare wide eyed at the credits that roll in front of me. I think to myself, is this real? And also...IS THIS FUCKING REAL?! Did I really just watch a movie about a top secret government funded super weapon where they created a half shark/half octopus where the biggest celebs involved are Eric Roberts and the guy who played the sidekick in Nacho Libre? But as I reflect upon my last 2 hours it slowly dawns on me that everything I just saw was 100% real. I'm afraid i may be damaged for life.

Sharktopus is one of those movies that shouldn't even be allowed to be reviewed. It's almost too easy to write something up on it. The idea is so outlandish that just writing a basic plot summary is enough to garner a few laughs and if you didn't laugh at that first paragraph...well then I have bad news for you, you have no soul. Syfy really went all out to bring you this film too. They hired legendary cult film producer Roger Corman who I'm sure jumped on it as soon as he read the one sheet. The problem is that in hiring Corman they had to cut the budget for special FX and rehearsals, but not for moderately hot chicks. The film is chock full of those bouncing around in their ill fitting bikinis and butter faces. Even the female lead, who was the hottest chick in this thing, looked like one of those girls from those high school comedies where they give the ugly girl a makeover which consists of taking off her glasses and POOF she's hot. The only problem is that she looked better with the glasses. It's kinda sad, but the guys looked better (no homo? Is that the right usage of that?).
This is the hot one
OK so the “film” opens up with the Blue Water corporation running some final tests on a new weapon. They helpfully save a girl's life who's about to be eaten by a sharktopus minus the “opus”. Of course there's some military stuffed shirt there demanding more real life scenarios be done with the sharktopus. Despite their protests that it still needed some testing they follow his orders to sneak up and follow a speedboat undetected. This is when the boat veers in front of the creature knocking out it's controlling implants and ALL HELL BREAKS LOOSE!!

Basically the rest of the film is an excuse to show half naked women doing inane things and then dying at the tentacle spikes of the SHARKTOPUS!! Every death is more ridiculous than the last and ultimately they even go so far as to imply that they're about to kill a little boy, but they let him live. Sadly the “stars” involved can't say the same as Roberts is given the single most gruesome death in the movie and “Esqueleto” gets killed off screen. Guess they must have run out of money by that point?

There's nothing really all that redeeming about the movie except for the overall insanity factor. If seeing a film about a half shark/half octopus walk up on land to kill things then I have some good news. You'll most likely love this! If your taste is a little more discerning than mine well maybe you should skip this one. Checking on the Syfy website I see the next time Sharktopus is on is in November so if you really wanna see it, you better check your local listing to find out exactly when it'll be on. This is a great flick to get hammered at poke fun at with some friends OR if you're insane you can watch it alone and sober. Either way I suspect you'll have fun. Just like I did!

Sharktopus calls out to be seen by the masses. Even with all it's flaws it's an amazing event!

3.5 out of 5

Drink up, I've got movies to watch!
- Moe