Cathode Tan - Games, Media and Geek Stuff
logo design by man bytes blog

Monday, January 16, 2006

Kotaku's Uwe Boll Defense

Crecente has apparently viewed House of the Dead and deemed it worthy:

The first half of the movie is action-packed and full of amazing special effects. If you haven’t seen it yet, Boll uses some pretty interesting technology to create some huge bullet-time scenes. Instead of the scenes including two or three people, he managed to squeeze in a whole graveyard worth of actors. The effect is pretty cool. The middle drags a little, but fortunately it’s a fairly short section. The end jumps back into the action, but isn’t as enjoyable as the beginning of the movie.

Boll also did a lot to turn this slasher flick into a homage to the game. There are bits of footage from the game actually in the movie, and lots of the game elements show up as well. Whenever one of the main characters dies, the background fades to black and the camera slowly rotates around the character, just like the drop-a-coin countdown in the arcade shooter. One of the last shoot-out scenes of the movie features the characters walking down a long hallway blasting zombies as they jump out of the dark.
-- Uwe Boll Ain't Heavy

I have seen the flick and stand by my rating of sucktastic. I'm not sure what amazing special effects could possibly be referenced here, since I mostly remember bad slo-mo directing that feels every bit like a fan-made movie made with a handycam. The "footage from the game" is used to cut in between scenes. When The Girl spotted one of these while passing by, she asked what it was. I replied that this was based on a video game. And those were from the computer game.

She quite rightfully left disgusted and didn't return.

If Crecente is referring to the action shot montage where every character gets to kill a zombie at drudgingly slow frame rate in humorously over-stylized ways ... it's definately the apex of the movie. It's also just about where I stopped watching.

Did I mention one of the characters is actually named Captain Kirk?

Crecente's argument seems to be that House of the Dead is just a victim of it's genre. Instead, I'd say the genre is a victim of Uwe Boll. It uses every bad cliche - stupid characters, bad dialogue, plot holes, violence with a gore level approaching idiotic ... and adds in some new tricks like awful puns, stealing scenes from unrelated movies and prominent product display.

There is one good thing about this movie. One.

Erica Durance shows her breasts in it. It occurs early on. Once you see them, stop watching.

Considering there are so much better examples of the genre (28 Days Later for instance) and even better cheap horror flicks (Evil Dead) or video game adaptations (Resident Evil) there is really very little reason to see this movie to the end. And less reason to defend doing so afterwards.

And if you don't believe me, Fangoria awarded it their worst movie of the year award for 2003. And those guys see a lot of horror films.

tagged: ,


Thomas said...

I've watched a LOT of horror movies. I'm with you: I don't know what Crecente was watching, but it wasn't a respectable entry into the genre at all.

That he would even compare it to Romero's Dead trilogy stuns me.

Josh said...

I'm assuming he might have been under the influence of drugs. Hallucinations would explain these special effects of which he speaks.

I should have managed a Shaun of the Dead counterpoint in there as well. Obviously not Citizen Kane itself and fairly low budget - but damn funny and well directed.

Zombie movies are kinda neat because they don't require a lot of cash to do well. But they still take some talent.