What Happens in Vegas Preview

“Ninubus! Not I, not you, but us. The living vampiiiire,” croons little Mikey Myers. Jamie and Patrick are stunned. Here they are with years of professional dance experience under their belts and yet they can only attempt to follow Mikey sinuous dance moves that have left the arena in an exultant trance. Is this why he was such a big fan of the band? He too dreamed of fame on the big stage? They all pile down the stairs to the green room after the show, sweat coursing rivulets down their glistening chests. “My god, Mikey!” screams teen heartthrob Jamie. Tears are brimming in his bloodshot eyes and teen heartthrob Patrick is already weeping. “It was beautiful,” he mutters, “I now understand art. You are art.” Ty and Parsons are already deep into writing the next album in the corner, having been inspired by Mikey’s majestic tunes. “Gee,” Mikey says embarrassed, “I was just being me. You really think I can join?” Teen heartthrob Jamie and Patrick chuckle and shake their heads. “No, we’re done with this life. We’re thinking more of a manager role in the next iteration of the band. We have an idea for a website and we need just a little more capital to get it off the ground.” They wink at each other and Jamie and Patrick know exactly what that website might be. Ty and Parsons come over and each put an arm around Mikey’s shoulder. “We’re also thinking of a name change. What do you think about Mikey Mike and the Mikey Mikes?” Mikey blushes again, “Geeee.” Looks like Jamie and Patrick’s work here is done, but before they go teen heartthrob Jamie and Patrick ask them if they might want to stay on. At least for the next stop on the tour. That’s right! We’re watching What Happens in Vegas. It’s a classic tale of boy meets girl, boy marries girl, boy and girl are forced by the court system to try to work it all out (for love). Classic. Let’s go! 

What Happens in Vegas (2008) – BMeTric: 30.7; Notability: 43

StreetCreditReport.com – BMeTric: top 24.0%; Notability: top 13.2%; Rotten Tomatoes: top 22.1%; Higher BMeT: Meet the Spartans, Disaster Movie, The Hottie & the Nottie, The Love Guru, Prom Night, One Missed Call, Superhero Movie, The Spirit, Zombie Strippers!, The Happening, College Road Trip, The Haunting of Molly Hartley, 10,000 BC, An American Carol, Meet Dave, The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, College, Space Chimps, First Sunday, Witless Protection, and 40 more; Higher Notability: The Day the Earth Stood Still, Eagle Eye, The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, New York, I Love You, Miracle at St. Anna, You Don’t Mess with the Zohan, Meet Dave, Jumper, Bedtime Stories, Drillbit Taylor, Semi-Pro, An American Carol, The Love Guru, The Happening, Superhero Movie, Seven Pounds, Made of Honor, 10,000 BC, Four Christmases, Max Payne, and 13 more; Lower RT: One Missed Call, House, Surfer, Dude, Disaster Movie, Meet the Spartans, Strange Wilderness, The Haunting of Molly Hartley, Witless Protection, College, The Accidental Husband, The Hottie & the Nottie, Babylon A.D., Prom Night, Bangkok Dangerous, 10,000 BC, Shutter, Hell Ride, Fool’s Gold, Deception, First Sunday, and 34 more; Notes: Clawing its way back to 6.0 which isn’t so bad. Not so bad at all. The Notability is pretty high I think for a comedy, probably a testament to the stacked cast.

Leonard Maltin – 2.5 stars –  Super-organized Diaz, dumped by her fiance, and irresponsible Jutcher, fired by his father from the family business, both seek escape in Las Vegas – and wind up married to one another after a drunken evening. But dissolving the union becomes a challenge when a judge orders them to live together for six months. About what you’d expect, especially as the duo engage in dirty tricks, but as the film goes on it becomes more benign and entertaining – boosted by the two stars’ engaging personalities.

(Sounds about right. I think most bad reviews seem to be very focused on how trite the whole concept is and how the film really brings nothing new to the table.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EsO3PfQiXy8/

(Man they should have left out the judge part of it. Without that the film kind of makes sense. With it it ends up just teetering off the edge of a farce. What kind of judge would want to deal with some annulment nonsense 6 months later? It doesn’t make sense, just split the money and annul the marriage, simple.)

DirectorsTom Vaughan – ( Known For: Starter for 10; Some Kind of Beautiful; Extraordinary Measures; So Undercover; BMT: What Happens in Vegas; Notes: He’s been doing a lot of television, like The Flight Attendant recently. He had a very brief foray into features.)

WritersDana Fox – ( Known For: The Lost City; Cruella; How to Be Single; Isn’t It Romantic; The Wedding Date; Future BMT: Couples Retreat; BMT: What Happens in Vegas; Notes: Apparently she was tapped to punch up Knight and Day because of this film, recommended by Diaz herself, but she didn’t receive credit.)

ActorsCameron Diaz – ( Known For: Shrek; Shrek 2; Gangs of New York; Shrek the Third; The Mask; Minority Report; There’s Something About Mary; Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas; Being John Malkovich; Shrek Forever After; The Holiday; My Best Friend’s Wedding; Charlie’s Angels; Knight and Day; Bad Teacher; Annie; Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle; In Her Shoes; The Box; Any Given Sunday; Future BMT: Sex Tape; The Other Woman; The Counselor; Slackers; BMT: Vanilla Sky; The Sweetest Thing; What Happens in Vegas; What to Expect When You’re Expecting; Razzie Notes: Winner for Worst Actress in 2015 for Sex Tape, and The Other Woman; Nominee for Worst Actress, and Worst Screen Couple for What Happens in Vegas in 2009; Nominee for Worst Actress for Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle in 2004; Nominee for Worst Supporting Actress for Annie in 2015; and Nominee for Worst Screen Combo for Sex Tape in 2015; Notes: Y’all know Diaz. Famously broke her nose surfing and that is why she got a nose job. She stopped acting in 2014 to pursue health science ventures.)

Ashton Kutcher – ( Known For: No Strings Attached; Annie; Spread; Guess Who; Open Season; A Lot Like Love; Coming Soon; Bobby; Personal Effects; Future BMT: The Butterfly Effect; Dude, Where’s My Car?; Just Married; Reindeer Games; My Boss’s Daughter; BMT: Cheaper by the Dozen; Killers; New Year’s Eve; Valentine’s Day; What Happens in Vegas; The Guardian; Jobs; Down to You; Texas Rangers; Razzie Notes: Winner for Worst Actor in 2011 for Killers, and Valentine’s Day; Nominee for Worst Actor in 2004 for Cheaper by the Dozen, Just Married, and My Boss’s Daughter; and in 2014 for Jobs; and Nominee for Worst Screen Couple for What Happens in Vegas in 2009; Notes: He’s pretty much stopped acting interestingly. I think it is because he’s a genuinely successful venture capitalist maybe? That and he’s started a family with Mila Kunis.)

Rob Corddry – ( Known For: The Way Way Back; Hot Tub Time Machine; Old School; Pain & Gain; Blades of Glory; Warm Bodies; Semi-Pro; Seeking a Friend for the End of the World; The Layover; W.; Shimmer Lake; Office Christmas Party; Arthur and the Invisibles; Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay; Muppets Most Wanted; How to Be a Latin Lover; Hot Tub Time Machine 2; The Winning Season; Butter; In a World…; Future BMT: Sex Tape; The Heartbreak Kid; BMT: Failure to Launch; What Happens in Vegas; I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry; Escape from Planet Earth; Unaccompanied Minors; Notes: Still working. He was one of the more notable Daily Show correspondents back in that show’s true heyday. Won four Emmys for Children’s Hospital.)

Budget/Gross – $35,000,000 / Domestic: $80,277,646 (Worldwide: $219,375,562)

(That is solid as a rock. Which I suppose maybe explains why Kutcher and Diaz remained staples of the rom coms of that era.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 26% (34/133): What Happens in Vegas has a few laughs, but mostly settles for derivative romantic comedy conventions and receives little help from a pair of unlikable leads.

(A few laughs? So a few more than most bad comedies? So … it’s a okay comedy? A bad comedy has like … one laugh. An okay one a handful. What or we, just picking laughs off the laugh tree?)

Reviewer Highlight: We all know what happens in Vegas — and we know, without having to watch it, what happens in this movie. – Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times

Poster – What Sklogs in Vegas

(Noooooo. The dreaded white background and lack of color scheme. It’s horrible. Get it out of here… funny font, though. So appreciate that. D)

Tagline(s) – Get Lucky. (B-)

(Meh. Playing on Vegas, which you kinda have to do. Even though it’s not the point of the film, it’s still the point of the film… you know? A little clever, I guess.)

Keyword(s) – newlywed or las-vegas

Top 10: Avengers: Infinity War (2018), Shrek 2 (2004), Beetlejuice (1988), True Romance (1993), Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008), Identity (2003), Groundhog Day (1993), The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 (2011), Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (2011), Disturbia (2007)

Future BMT: 80.6 The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas (2000), 69.0 Showgirls (1995), 56.1 Shutter (2008), 39.9 The Heartbreak Kid (2007), 38.6 Play It to the Bone (1999), 36.1 The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013), 35.0 Vegas Vacation (1997), 32.7 Indecent Proposal (1993), 31.3 Lucky You (2007), 18.6 Awake (2007)

BMT: The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 (2011), Yours, Mine & Ours (2005), Maximum Overdrive (1986), What Happens in Vegas (2008), Over the Top (1987), Miss Congeniality 2: Armed & Fabulous (2005), 3000 Miles to Graceland (2001), Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 (2015)

Matches: The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 (2011), What Happens in Vegas (2008), The Heartbreak Kid (2007), 13 Cameras (2015), Best Man Down (2012), Broken Vows (2014), Arthur Newman (2012), Lovely Molly (2011), Carnage (1984), Honeymoon Horror (1982), Prisoners of Inertia (1989), 21 (2008), The Hangover (2009), Ocean’s Eleven (2001), Con Air (1997), Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story (2004), Showgirls (1995), Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998), Indecent Proposal (1993), Leaving Las Vegas (1995), Smokin’ Aces (2006), Mars Attacks! (1996), Vegas Vacation (1997), The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013), Wild Card (2015), Miss Congeniality 2: Armed & Fabulous (2005), Bugsy (1991), The Cooler (2003), Last Vegas (2013), Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 (2015), One from the Heart (1981), The Trust (2016), Lucky You (2007), Play It to the Bone (1999), Lookin’ to Get Out (1982), Station to Station (2021), Delusion (1991), Weedjies: Halloweed Night (2019), Diamonds and Guns (2008), Three Corners of Deception (2021), Las Vegas Vietnam: The Movie (2019), The Garlock Incident (2012), Deadly Rhapsody (2001), Desert Steel (1994), Ride Me (1994), Sawgrass (2019)

(C-c-c-c-c-c-combo keyword. Look at that sweet one. I’ll leave it up to you to guess which movies are newlywed movies and which Vegas movies. Is Rock Vegas the same as Las Vegas? I’m skeptical.)

Welcome to Earf (HoE Number 16) – The shortest path through The Movie Database cast lists using only BMT films is: Rob Corddry is No. 3 billed in What Happens in Vegas and No. 3 billed in Escape from Planet Earth, which also stars Jessica Alba (No. 2 billed) who is in Mechanic: Resurrection (No. 2 billed) which also stars Jason Statham (No. 1 billed) who is in In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale (No. 1 billed) which also stars Leelee Sobieski (No. 3 billed) who is in Here on Earth (No. 1 billed) => (3 + 3) + (2 + 2) + (1 + 1) + (3 + 1) = 16. If we were to watch Annie, and Wicker Park we can get the HoE Number down to 14.

Notes – Diaz and Kutcher stated in a post-production interview that they were actually drunk during the wedding scene in order to make it look realistic and their erratic behavior caused the scene to be filmed multiple times. An video of the outtakes was available online, but Fox blocked it due to copyright infringement.

According to Rob Corddry, Ashton Kutcher slapped him in the face during his audition even though it was not scripted.

Joy’s party trick was performed by Cameron Diaz in another movie – Charlie’s Angel’s: Full Throttle during the recovery of the Halo rings.

The lobby of their hotel is the Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino. The view from their room places them in the northern most part of the building with a view of the Paris and Caesars Palace.

Rob Corddry’s character is a lawyer who mentions community college early on in the film. A year later, Corddry would go on to play a lawyer again in the NBC sitcom Community, set in a community college.

The nameplate of the divorce judge in the court reads “Honor the whopper” (Hon. R. D. Whopper)

In a flashback in a scene during end credits, the protagonists are shown getting married in Las Vegas. In an additional scene, we see Tipper (Lake Bell) punching Mason (Jason Sudeikis) in the groin.

Awards – Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Actress (Cameron Diaz, 2009)

Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Screen Couple (Cameron Diaz, Ashton Kutcher, 2009)

Morbius Recap

Jamie

Hooo hooo, now this is more like it. It feels like the more common reaction during a BMT Live is a hope that we didn’t screw up a little by jumping the gun and watching a film that is merely bad and not BMT bad. No worries this time as Morbius is complete trash. Not trash in the way the boring, Flatliners remake was. That had us asking “why did they make this and why are we watching it?” No, this is an actively horrible, mostly incomprehensible, one of the worst endings I can remember type of film. I never wanted to walk out of the theater. It was a tragedy in three parts. 

First, the very premise is inane. I could go on and on (and on) about the science behind this film. So Dr. Morbius has a genetic disease… caused by a mutation or alteration of some sort (I presume) and yet he has to use vampire bat DNA to fix it. Uh, why not the several billion other people on Earth who don’t have the alteration? Surely that would be easier. Then when he incorporates this alteration into his DNA he requires blood for sustenance (fine) and can’t use the artificial blood that makes him uber successful (fine, fine) but it also has to be human blood specifically. Hold up. Why? Do vampire bats only sustain themselves on human blood? Or bat blood? Or whatever would ever make that make sense. Oh yeah, and he’s totally a human when he drinks blood but turns into a monster other times, cause that’s also how DNA/bats work. Again, I could talk about this forever.

Second, to prop up this premise they fill the script with “they sound like jokes, but I assure you they are not” types of jokes. What do I mean? No one ever has anything to talk about other than the pseudo-science mumbo jumbo so when they can’t talk about bat DNA they are delivering quippy one-liners. And these one-liners sound like they are being written $10 a pop for an awards show. At times so much noise and motion was happening on screen that I couldn’t really even tell what was and wasn’t a joke. The delivery was so flat and the moment so fleeting that it was lost in the wind (and straight out of my brain) immediately.

Finally, and most egregiously, you literally couldn’t tell what happened in the back third of the film. They set up a big climactic fight and then decided to have it take place while everyone was falling off a building through smoke and a swarm of bats. Suddenly the bad guy died and the movie ended, but not before bringing Morbius’ love interest back to life (as a bad guy? Who knows) and delivering Michael Keaton as Vulture FROM AN ENTIRELY DIFFERENT FRANCHISE! My head exploded. Making heads or tails out of this film is impossible in the moment. Scientists will have to study it like Dr. Morbius studied that bat DNA.

And I will study it forever if they give me the chance. Give me a sequel! I want The Mummy 2 starring Tom Cruise. Keep this going and don’t you dare give up! Patrick?

Patrick

‘Ello everyone! Morbius? More like Why Us?! amirite? After Venom and … uh, a second Venom, people were clamoring for that sweet Sinister Six. And who’s better for that than (checks notes) Morbius? Who the hell is Morbius? Let’s go!

  • For real, it is hard to even figure out Morbius because he is barely a character it seems. Is he in the Sinister Six? He was in the Sinister Sixty-Six and Sinister Sixty … so he’s like the deeeeeeep bench of the Sinister Six. But time to call him up to the show, show us what you’ve got Morbius!
  • That’s it? That’s what you got? You ooze smoke and are a not-really-vampire? He can move fast, but for real, you trap him in a box for a day and he’s toast! A perplexing decision top to bottom.
  • Let’s add bar-none some of the worst action scenes I’ve ever seen. Completely incomprehensible, and I assume, when producers realized all of the action scenes looked like trash they screamed “Uh, quick, have him ooze smoke so the audience can’t see how crap it looks!” Because Morbius is nonsensically oozing smoke all over the place.
  • And wait … why does he have to drink HUMAN blood? Vampire bats drink like cattle blood, shouldn’t that be sufficient? Seems easy peasy and like an actual cure when you put it that way …
  • And not since Hitman: Agent 47 (inducted into the Hall of Fame this year) have we seen so many humorless jokes in an action film. Leto calmly and quietly says “I’m Venom” at one point and it takes five seconds before you register “wait … that was supposed to be a joke.” And that was the best joke in the entire thing.
  • So what are the chances of a sequel? I think 0%. There is no way that any of this ends up going anywhere without Tom Hardy carrying it over the finish line as Venom. They still have three more people to go! I guess they could just get bad guys from older Spider Man films and stuff. Doc Ock and Green Goblin would actually probably both do it in the end because why not?
  • Decent Setting as a Character (Where?) for New York City. Is the mythical cure for Morbius’ rare disease a MacGuffin … yeah why not, a MacGuffin (Why?) for that nonsense. And a for real Worst Twist (How?) for none of the Sinister Six set up, but instead the reveal that Morbius’ doctor girlfriend is still alive.
  • Theater rating? You best believe I had a solid time at AMC Framingham. Surprisingly busy, so I had to sit a little close to the screen, but otherwise nice and quiet and relaxing. I have a feeling this section for Live! will end soon since I’ll just be heading off to AMC Framingham for cheap matinees for the foreseeable future.

I’ll once again point out that I put sequel ideas into my quizzes, so I’m going to stop doubling up on that in the recaps. Cheerios,

The Sklogs

Morbius Quiz

Oh man, so get this. I was trying to cure my terminal blood disease when I accidentally made myself into a vampire (whoops!). During my transformation though I bopped myself on the head and now I can’t remember a thing. Do you remember what happened in Morbius?

Pop Quiz Hot Shot!

1) Michael and his besties Milo are young boys with a terrible terminal blood disease living in Greece. But Milo isn’t his real name, it is Lucius. Why does Michael call him Milo?

2) Soon though Michael’s caretaker discovers that Michael is a genius. What tips him off to Michael’s unique genius? What is Michael’s great invention (which he ultimately turns down the Nobel Prize for)?

3) Michael is trying to find a cure for him and Milo. What is actually wrong with their blood and why does Michael think the DNA from a vampire bat will cure them?

4) Name the four main powers Michael and Milo gain via their super bat serum.

5) What the hell, let’s do a question about the mid-credits scenes. Why is Toombs (the Vulture) let out of prison?

Bonus Question: In the after-after-after credits scene we see a familiar face vowing revenge on our “hero” Morbius. Who is it?

Answers

Morbius Preview

Jamie flips back the denim sheet covering the other crate of jorts and huddled in the corner is, “Little Mikey Myers?” Jamie and Patrick gasp simultaneously. Now in his late teens and clutching a PaJama ParTy CD to his chest, Mikey Myers looks at them with fear in his eyes. “Are you…,” he stammers but can’t finish the thought before he faints. This is tickling some vague memory for Patrick, but he can’t quite grasp it. “Wake him up and bring him along. We can’t risk him alerting the guards,” Patrick finally says and soon they are all on their way to the PaJama ParTy green room. LePumice is staring around at his surroundings in awe. “The last concert,” he whispers, “the scene of the crime.” Jamie’s jaw clenches. “Yes,” he agrees, “the night we embarrassed ourselves. It’s clear we were sent here to stop Ty from doing what he did. To resolve the sins of the past and give PaJama ParTy the send off it deserved.” But Patrick isn’t so sure. When they reach the green room door they take a deep breath before busting into the room, a twin chop ready for action. The scene is familiar, Parsons eyes glazed, Ty a devious smirk on his lips, and Jamie and Patrick about to mack on some potent weed brownies. Jamie screams, “Don’t eat it, it’s reefer. Ty is trying to ruin everything.” But instead of a thanks, teen heartthrob Jamie just rolls his eyes. “Uh duh, gramps. That’s the point,” and with that he downs the brownie. Now they remember… The fans were too much, the fame was too much. They did it together. “Now what?” Jamie says hopelessly. Patrick looks at his watch and looks at LePumice, Mikey, and Patrick. “Looks like we’re doing this live.” That’s right! We are doing it Live! BMT Live, that is, and watching the latest, greatest, worstest movie on the block: Morbius. He is a living vampire and we are living people actually going to the theater to watch the film. Let’s go!

Morbius (2022) – BMeTric: 53.5; Notability: 34

StreetCreditReport.com – BMeTric: top 2.0%; Notability: top 0.0%; Rotten Tomatoes: top 3.6%; Higher BMeT: Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Brazen, The Ice Age Adventures of Buck Wild, Moonfall, Blacklight; Lower RT: Blacklight, Brazen; Notes: So yeah, 34 probably actually translates to what? Like 70 in the long run for Notability. So you probably have to double things. Would be kind of interesting to try and figure something like that out. Could use Lives! from the last few years maybe (NOTE: Looking back at a few it seems like x1.5 is a pretty safe bet. Unfortunately Notability doesn’t go back very far). I am very much looking forward to Blacklight though.

RogerEbert.com – 2.0 stars – Dr. Michael Morbius (Jared Leto), the title character of Columbia Pictures’ MCU-adjacent semi-horror movie “Morbius,” is a “living vampire.” What, you might be thinking, does that mean? Did the good doctor become a vampire without having to die first? Why, yes—he fused his DNA with vampire bat DNA in an attempt to cure the rare, fatal blood disease that’s been plaguing him since childhood. (What disease, you ask? You sweet, innocent child.) The fusion gave him super speed, super strength, echolocation abilities, and an appetite for blood that’s only partially sated by the artificial substitute for which Morbius rejects a Nobel Prize at the beginning of the film. (Why? Again, you’re asking too many questions.) In short, he’s a science vampire. (So, like if Batman was a doctor, then? Wrong universe, but close.)

(It is a very accurate description of how maddening this film is. But … how is that review a 2/4 stars? The film isn’t close to that good and is gobbledegook, so I don’t get how you go above 1.5 stars at all.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SQK-QxxtE8Y/

(Yeah … that looks like garbage haha. Dark, nonsensical garbage. So that’s something to look forward to.)

DirectorsDaniel Espinosa – ( Known For: Life; Safe House; Child 44; Snabba Cash; BMT: Morbius; Notes: He is from Sweden. He is announced for two Middle-East-set films about war. I assume in the end only one of those will actually be made.)

WritersMatt Sazama and Burk Sharpless – ( Known For: Power Rangers; Future BMT: Dracula Untold; BMT: Morbius; Gods of Egypt; The Last Witch Hunter; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Screenplay for Gods of Egypt in 2017; Notes: A writing team who also created the new Lost in Space series. They are also writing a Madam Web movie … for real, who are these characters Sony is making movies about?)

ActorsJared Leto – ( Known For: Blade Runner 2049; House of Gucci; Zack Snyder’s Justice League; American Psycho; Fight Club; Requiem for a Dream; Panic Room; The Little Things; Dallas Buyers Club; Girl, Interrupted; Lord of War; Mr. Nobody; The Thin Red Line; The Outsider; Chapter 27; Prefontaine; How to Make an American Quilt; Lonely Hearts; Highway; Sunset Strip; Future BMT: Suicide Squad; Alexander; Switchback; Black & White; BMT: Morbius; Urban Legend; Razzie Notes: Winner for Worst Supporting Actor for House of Gucci in 2022; Nominee for Worst Supporting Actor for Suicide Squad in 2017; and Nominee for Worst Screen Couple for House of Gucci in 2022; Notes: These days possibly more known for being somewhat of a lunatic on set than anything else. He won an Oscar for Dallas Buyers Club which has given him something of a blank check over the last ten years.)

Matt Smith – ( Known For: Last Night in Soho; Pride and Prejudice and Zombies; Official Secrets; The Forgiven; His House; Charlie Says; Womb; Lost River; Patient Zero; Mapplethorpe; Bert & Dickie; Future BMT: Terminator Genisys; BMT: Morbius; Notes: Actually most famous for Dr. Who. He was a fine Doctor, although out of the five Doctors since the restart of the series he might be my least favorite, personally.)

Adria Arjona – ( Known For: 6 Underground; Triple Frontier; Pacific Rim: Uprising; Sweet Girl; The Belko Experiment; Future BMT: Life of the Party; BMT: Morbius; Notes: She’s going to be in the Star Wars show Andor. Originally from Puerto Rico, she’s the daughter of singer Ricardo Arjona.)

Budget/Gross – $75–83 million / Domestic: $43,838,847 (Worldwide: $88,738,847)

(I think this will likely be a small loss for Sony in the end, but maybe not so bad that they will pull the plug on the Sinister Six entirely. I’ll end up probably around like $70 domestic and closer to $100 international for a $60 take home for Sony … not what you want, but also maybe not enough to deter things. Then again The Mummy made waaaaaay more than that and the Dark Universe was just one and done immediately.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 16% (33/205): Cursed with uninspired effects, rote performances, and a borderline nonsensical story, this dreary mess is a vein attempt to make Morbius happen.

(Really rather astonishingly bad. Shocking. Like … I was half convinced it was impossible to release a blockbuster with sub-20% these days just because of how studios could repeat the test-screen/reshoot cycle until a film was merely boring instead of outright bad.)

Reviewer Highlight: Morbius is a forgettable, often laughable, entry in Sony’s attempt to fill its own Spider-Man-adjacent cinematic universe, a poorly edited, derivative time suck — pun intended. – Mark Kennedy, Associated Press

Poster – Morbius: Two Wong Chew, Fangs for Everything! Julie Newmar (the Living Vampire)

(There is some nice effort here. I was afraid this would be blah grays and blacks, but they give it an 80’s vibe with some red, blue and purple pop. Nice font too. Biggest problem? This is what I call a Tom Cruise poster: all about dat star. But is Jared Leto really enough of a draw to be the whole poster? Feels incorrect. B-.)

Tagline(s) – The line between hero and villain will be broken. (B-)

(Phew, I thought the tagline on the poster was official and that one is terrible. This one is way better. Effective from an advertising angle (I’m intrigued) but maybe not all that clever or interesting. Still, not bad.)

Keyword(s) – vampire

Top 10: Morbius (2022), Twilight (2008), Doctor Sleep (2019), I Am Legend (2007), Hotel Transylvania: Transformania (2022), Blade (1998), Dracula (1992), The Lost Boys (1987), Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010), From Dusk Till Dawn (1996)

Future BMT: 90.0 Vampires Suck (2010), 88.6 BloodRayne (2005), 51.7 Dylan Dog: Dead of Night (2010), 49.9 Sleepwalkers (1992), 47.1 Transylvania 6-5000 (1985), 44.6 Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992), 43.4 Bordello of Blood (1996), 43.0 Underworld: Blood Wars (2016), 40.9 The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003), 40.9 Blade: Trinity (2004)

BMT: Morbius (2022), Hellboy (2019), The Twilight Saga: New Moon (2009), The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 (2011), Priest (2011), Vampire Academy (2014), Queen of the Damned (2002), Dracula 2000 (2000), Ultraviolet (2006), Vampire in Brooklyn (1995), Dudley Do-Right (1999)

Matches: Twilight (2008), Blade (1998), Dracula (1992), The Lost Boys (1987), From Dusk Till Dawn (1996), Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles (1994), Let Me In (2010), Blade: Trinity (2004), The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 (2012), Blade II (2002), Underworld (2003), Dark Shadows (2012), The Twilight Saga: Eclipse (2010), Night Teeth (2021), The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones (2013), The Twilight Saga: New Moon (2009), Fright Night (2011), Near Dark (1987), Body Double (1984), 30 Days of Night (2007), Underworld: Blood Wars (2016), Fright Night (1985), Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992), Daybreakers (2009), Priest (2011), Vampire Academy (2014), Queen of the Damned (2002), Vampires (1998), Hotel Transylvania 2 (2015), Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (2012), Underworld: Evolution (2006), Underworld: Rise of the Lycans (2009), Dracula 2000 (2000), Ultraviolet (2006), Sleepwalkers (1992), Underworld: Awakening (2012), Embrace of the Vampire (1995), Once Bitten (1985), Vampire’s Kiss (1988), Dracula: Dead and Loving It (1995), Thirst (2009), Shadow of the Vampire (2000), The Little Vampire (2000), A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (2014), Fright Night Part 2 (1988), BloodRayne (2005), Freaks of Nature (2015), Paris, je t’aime (2006), Vampires Suck (2010), The House Next Door: Meet the Blacks 2 (2021), … (and many more)

(We’ve watched a ton of these over the last two years I think. League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (or as I know it, LXG obvs) has somehow evaded us. It isn’t impossible that that is a Hall of Famer in waiting, that film is hilariously bad.)

Welcome to Earf (HoE Number 10) – The shortest path through The Movie Database cast lists using only BMT films is: Jared Leto is No. 1 billed in Morbius and No. 2 billed in Urban Legend, which also stars Alicia Witt (No. 1 billed) who is in 88 Minutes (No. 2 billed) which also stars Leelee Sobieski (No. 3 billed) who is in Here on Earth (No. 1 billed) => (1 + 2) + (1 + 2) + (3 + 1) = 10. There is no shorter path at the moment.

Notes – The name of the cargo ship in the beginning of the movie is Murnau (as in F.W. Murnau, the director of the classic vampire movie ‘Nosferatu’). Like the cargo ship in ‘Nosferatu’, the Murnau arrives in port with its entire crew dead and drained of blood.

The character of Morbius can also be glimpsed in the bonus features of the Blade (1998) DVD, in a deleted ending.

Matt Smith joined the film, after previously turning down other superhero film roles, due to director Daniel Espinosa’s involvement and encouragement from his former Doctor Who co-star Karen Gillan, who portrays Nebula in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

The New York scenes were actually filmed in Manchester’s Northern Quarter, United Kingdom. All city lights, signs, and license plates were changed to match those found in New York.

In the subway scene, several ads/posters are seen in the background with the names “Thomas & Kane”. An obvious nod to Roy Thomas and Gil Kane, who were the creators of the Marvel superhero Iron Fist.

In the first crime scene, Agent Ramirez states that this was the weirdest crime after “that thing in San Francisco”. This is a reference to Venom. Later in the movie, Morbius states, “I am Venom.”

Leto was rumored for another vampire role, Lestat in Josh Boone’s failed Vampire Chronicles reboot.

Second SSMU film to tie-in to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, after Venom: Let There Be Carnage (2021).

The original cut had Carnage as one of Morbius’ prisoners (before the film was reshuffled and placed eight movies ahead of where it originally was going to be).

The film was set to be released on July 31, 2020 in the United States. But when the coronavirus pandemic began to affect the film industry including attendance at movie theaters, the film’s release was moved to March 19, 2021, January 11, 2021 and finally January 28, 2022. Sony Pictures subsequently began moving their release date for 2020 films to 2021 including another film set in Sony Pictures Universe of Marvel Characters: Venom: Let There Be Carnage from its October 2, 2020 release date to June 25, 2021. Spider-Man: No Way Home, another Marvel film associated with the Marvel Cinematic Universe, was dated for release in the United States on July 16, 2021 to November 5, 2021, and again to December 17, 2021.

One of the key locations in the film is Horizon Labs, where Morbius looks after children with the same blood disorder that he has — while also carrying out his research into curing the condition. But Horizon Labs has been a huge part of the “Spider-Man” comics in the last decade, as Peter Parker worked there during Dan Slott’s run on the character. It’s a place for gifted scientists to work on the most cutting-edge technology and ideas, without the restraints of having to pitch them to a board of directors. Horizon Labs first appears in “Amazing Spider-Man” issue #648, and it’s run by Max Modell, one of Peter’s personal heroes in the scientific community. Morbius also works for Horizon in the comics, and he’s the one who creates a serum that saves everyone in New York when the events of “Spider-Island” turn everyone into giant arachnids. But he’s not the only villain to grace the laboratory’s halls. Otto Octavius, aka Doctor Octopus, also works for the company after he transfers his consciousness into Peter’s brain in “Amazing Spider-Man” issue #700 — and he uses Horizon as a way of developing new technology for his own heroic career. Although don’t worry, non-comic readers, Otto eventually surrendered Peter’s body back to the hero’s consciousness.

J.K. Simmons originally filmed scenes as J. Jonah Jameson for this movie. In the time that elapsed between the film’s original shoot and the production of Spider-Man: No Way Home, it became evident to the filmmakers that Morbius did not actually exist in the same universe as J.K. Simmons’ version of J. Jonah Jameson. As a result, Simmons’ scenes were removed from the film.

MCU fans prefer to think that the Adrian Toomes / Vulture from another universe is a variant and not the one from the MCU despite the confirmation from the director that it’s the same character, given how his character arc was resolved in Spider-Man: Homecoming and how his appearance here undermines it, not to mention how the logic behind his appearance in this universe doesn’t gel with how No Way Home presented the spell.

Bones (2001) Recap

Jamie

Welcome to the Bones Zone where I’m prepared to talk about all things Bones. So let’s get going. Fact number 1: *checks notes* Bones is a film that I watched. And thank you, that’s all I got. I have already forgotten the details of Bones but it’s a fun enough cheapo horror film. Definitely different than the typical fare given the concept. A bunch of musicians buy a house that unbeknownst to them was where a numbers runner, Jimmy Bones, was murdered. They try to open a nightclub there and inadvertently raise Bones from the dead and he goes around killing those that wronged him in the past and then other people to gain his evil strength. You see? Definitely different. It just didn’t really have the means to make it actually good.

For example, there are a number of cheapo horror films that I love. Night of the Demons, Pumpkinhead, Basket Case, etc. What made those stand out? They are highly original and also actually creepy. They use whatever means they have available to bring the horror to life. This is certainly a unique viewpoint for a horror film, but seems more inspired by Halloween 5 or something. It also had some of the worst old person makeup that I can remember. Which is a pretty big deal when you are in a genre that is known for some dope special effects. Like how can you even think about being in the same genre as something like The Thing while just caking a guy in plaster and saying that he’s old now? Anyway, it’s by no means a bad movie, but also not a cult classic like I was led to believe by some very reputable sources (read: wikipedia). But maybe I’m being a little too harsh because I like watching horror films and was kinda excited for this one. 

So I said this was a pretty original film and that’s true as you don’t get a blaxploitation inspired horror film every day, but that’s not the only thing that clearly inspired this film. I love weird connections so I thought I’d detail the obvious, the maybe not so obvious, and the awesome inspirations for this film:

The Obvious –  Amityville Horror. This is a haunted house film at heart but this takes it even a step further in the visual look of the house involved. Amityville Horror made a lot out of the general creepy, face-like house heavily used in its poster. Guess what this house looked like? 

The Maybe Not So Obvious – Hellraiser. This was actually the first film that came to mind as I watched it. We have an evil spirit that gains strength as people are murdered and his ghost/dog consumes the flesh and blood. You even see him come back to like in a very similar way, from skeleton on up.

The Awesome – I’ve always loved the idea of weird, unexpected adaptations. Add this to the pile cause this junk is Julius Caesar. We have Bones ruling the roost until he is betrayed by his supposed friends and stabbed to death. We even have Bones’ gf trying to persuade him not to go to the meeting due to a premonition, just like in the play. And just like in this film Julius Caesar came back to life and murdered everyone in a nightclub… right?

Patrick?

Patrick

‘Ello everyone! Bones (2001)? Wait … 2001? Were we not doing all 12 seasons of the television series Bones from 2005 starring Emily Deschanel as the titular Bones? I watched 245 episodes of David Boreanaz for nothing?! Let’s get into it!

  • Naw I was joking, I’ve never seen an episode of the show Bones … although given by love for Psych, Muder She Wrote, and other cheesy murder mystery shows I’m sure I would love it.
  • Bones, what is there to say about Bones … literally what is there to say? The film is somewhat of an enigma. A Blaxploitation-style Haunted House movie. Can you name another film like it? The closest I can really get is something like Candyman where they took urban legend themed slashers into housing projects.
  • Snoop Dogg is a terrible actor, but I can forgive him for that since he isn’t an actor. I liked Pam Greer.
  • Oh, the film does have bar none the worst makeup I’ve ever seen. The anti-Norbit. You have to see this shit, there is a character where they are trying to age him up, but instead of just putting some white hair on his temples they decide to put him in a terrible fat suit … it is a very distracting and perplexing decision.
  • Perplexing is also how I would describe the main character’s decision to buy a decrepit building and make it into a nightclub and, seemingly, open that night club within a month of buying a decrepit building full of rats. The party looked kind of fun I suppose, although they were just serving pizza on paper plates and stuff? Odd choice for a night club. Then again, I’m not sure I’ve ever been to a real nightclub. Is that a thing? Just ordering a mess of za to the club?
  • Man, turns out I had a lot to say about Bones, except I barely talked about it still somehow. A run of the mill haunted house film with some bad looking 70s flashbacks concerning crack flooding into American cities. I’m not at all surprised it got terrible reviews since it is a bad horror film.
  • I’m honestly at a bit of a loss for any superlatives I could throw its way, because it isn’t really set anywhere, and the people aren’t really looking for anything (except a good time at a party house). Closest to Bad, just for its terrible fat suit and makeup on the police officer.

I’m going to leave it there. Look for the sequel plan in the Quiz as usual. Cheerios,

The Sklogs

Bones (2001) Quiz

Oh man, so get this. I bought a decrepit old building which was haunted by a spooky ghost. Obviously, while I was throwing my huge rager in my borderline-condemned fire hazard of a building he popped out and just bopped me on the head! Now I can’t remember a thing. Do you remember what happened in Bones (2001)?

Pop Quiz Hot Shot!

1) In the beginning of the film some real jabronis come into the “bad part of town” to get something. What were they looking to buy (before getting killed by Bones)?

2) Bones can turn into an animal, what animal?

3) Why does Patrick buy the old decrepit building, what is his job and his friends/brothers jobs?

4) So … back in the 70s who killed Bones and why?

5) And who is Bones wreaking vengeance on when he returns (before being vanquished by Patrick and Pam Grier) and why?

Bonus Question: In a mid-credits scene Cynthia has a dream. Who does she dream of and what is she told?

Answers

Bones (2001) Preview

LePumice pushes the cart full of acid washed denim toward the main gates of the stadium. Sweat is beading on his forehead and he whispers quietly to the hidden Jamie and Patrick, “You guys sure this is going to work?” Patrick assures him that it will. They know PaJama ParTy’s biggest weakness was their shopaholism. “We were what the kids call ‘clothes horses.’ We had to have a metric ton of denim freshly acid washed for every show,” Patrick recalls fondly. As they get closer they hear a gruff voice. “You there, stop, what do you think you’re doing?” LePumice looks on the verge of bolting but stands his ground. A security guard looks suspiciously at the crate of denim. “Aren’t you going to take this other crate, too? Or are you just gonna leave it for me?” The guard points at another nearby crate. Phew. “Wait a second,” the guard says, suspicion aglow once again in his eyes, “This is a mighty large amount of freshly acid washed denim for just one show, isn’t it? They usually only need half this much.” Patrick and Jamie hold their breath in anticipation. What will LePumice come up with? “Right… uh, but it’s pretty steamy out here tonight so they are anticipating they’ll be sweating through double the number of jorts.” They let out a collective breath. Clever. And indeed the guard dabs his head and agrees that they don’t make jorts like they used to. Once inside LePumice hurries to the nearby wardrobe room before his legs give out. Patrick leaps out of the crate, but before he reaches the door Jamie stops him. “Wait, something… something is off,” he thinks for a moment, “I don’t know what it is, but something is different. I can feel it in my bones.” That’s right! We are watching Bones! (“What’s that?” all our loyal readers say at once) You don’t know what that is? Why it’s the cult classic Snoop Dogg horror film from the early 2000s… … … you know what it really doesn’t matter. We’re watching it anyway. Let’s go!

Bones (2001) – BMeTric: 56.5; Notability: 29

StreetCreditReport.com – BMeTric: top 6.4%; Notability: top 28.8%; Rotten Tomatoes: top 23.0%; Higher BMeT: Glitter, Jason X, Freddy Got Fingered, Driven, The Animal, Ghosts of Mars, Black Knight, Valentine, Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles, Soul Survivors, Monkeybone, The Musketeer, Corky Romano, Scary Movie 2, The Wedding Planner, Bones; Higher Notability: Pearl Harbor, Monkeybone, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, Hannibal, Impostor, Ghosts of Mars, Not Another Teen Movie, Bubble Boy, Swordfish, 15 Minutes, The One, Town & Country, The Affair of the Necklace, Scary Movie 2, I Am Sam, America’s Sweethearts, Along Came a Spider, Perfume, Texas Rangers, Joe Dirt, and 52 more; Lower RT: Nobody’s Baby, Texas Rangers, Soul Survivors, Glitter, Corky Romano, The Forsaken, Summer Catch, The Wash, Out Cold, Say It Isn’t So, Joe Dirt, Head Over Heels, Megiddo: The Omega Code 2, What’s the Worst That Could Happen?, Freddy Got Fingered, Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles, The Musketeer, Perfume, Double Take, Valentine, and 35 more; Notes: Actually a really solid BMeTric and Notability for a film I basically never heard of. Probably a testament to the BMeTric where you can find sub-5.0 films with <10K votes and it registers so high. Just saying.

Leonard Maltin – 2 stars –  Tow young suburban brothers (in both senses) buy a dilapidated ghetto brownstone in hopes of turning it into a trendy nightspot … but their entrepreneur father is panicked about the house’s sinister history and his own participation in the 1979 slaying of its original owner (Dogg), who’s now a ghost. If grossness makes you giggle, this speedy junk has a few grotesque jolts, plus the sight of still-shapely Grier to keep your own dad’s heart beating adequately.

(“Who’s now a ghost”? I’m in. Just such a funny line. If you remove just that bit you would never know that Snoop Dogg is even really in the film, it would just sound like an odd murder mystery or true crime thriller or something.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Z8Srxaoi48/

(Oh boy, the style of this film is something else. It also is mind blowing that this trailer from 2001 is in 4:3 format. It is an interesting haunted house idea, feels like they were trying to go for Candyman but just went a bit cheap.)

DirectorsErnest R. Dickerson – ( Known For: Juice; Double Play; Ambushed; Blind Faith; Future BMT: Surviving the Game; Tales from the Crypt: Demon Knight; BMT: Bulletproof; Bones; Never Die Alone; Notes: A frequent Cinematographer for Spike Lee, he was the first African-American member of the American Society of Cinematographers.)

WritersAdam Simon – ( Known For: Books of Blood; Brain Dead; Carnosaur; BMT: The Haunting in Connecticut; Bones; Notes: In writing Shadowman which is about a possessed Jazz musician based on a Valiant Comics character, which is kind of cool.)

Tim Metcalfe – ( Known For: Revenge of the Nerds; Kalifornia; Fright Night Part 2; Higher Ground; Three for the Road; Killer: A Journal of Murder; Iron Maze; Future BMT: Revenge of the Nerds II: Nerds in Paradise; Million Dollar Mystery; BMT: The Haunting in Connecticut; Bones; Notes: Most of his credits have to do with writing the original Revenge of the Nerds film. He evidently because Simon’s writing partner later on, and hasn’t written anything since 2011.)

ActorsSnoop Dogg – ( Known For: Training Day; Pitch Perfect 2; The Addams Family; The Beach Bum; Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping; Starsky & Hutch; Baby Boy; The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run; Dolemite Is My Name; Turbo; Future World; Trouble; Arthur et la vengeance de Maltazard; The Big Bang; Mac & Devin Go to High School; Pauly Shore Is Dead; Hood of Horror; Ride; Falling Up; Singh Is King; Future BMT: The Addams Family 2; Half Baked; Malibu’s Most Wanted; Arthur and the Invisibles; Soul Plane; Racing Stripes; Meet the Blacks; The Wash; I Got the Hook Up; Caught Up; BMT: Scary Movie V; Bones; Notes: Y’all know Snoop Dogg. Killed it at the Superbowl this year and notably (and briefly) changed his name to Snoop Lion at one point.)

Pam Grier – ( Known For: Jackie Brown; Mars Attacks!; The Vindicator; Escape from L.A.; Holy Smoke; The Man with the Iron Fists; Foxy Brown; Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey; Above the Law; Something Wicked This Way Comes; Coffy; Beyond the Valley of the Dolls; The Package; Class of 1999; The Big Bird Cage; The Arena; The Big Doll House; ‘Sheba, Baby’; Just Wright; Women in Cages; Future BMT: Jawbreaker; Snow Day; Larry Crowne; Poms; Posse; The Allnighter; In Too Deep; BMT: Ghosts of Mars; The Adventures of Pluto Nash; Bones; Notes: Was a major blaxploitation actress of the 70s, and then famously starred in Jackie Brown a homage to that era. Was diagnosed with cancer in 1988, but survived.)

Michael T. Weiss – ( Known For: Ordinary People; Freeway; Jeffrey; Freeway II: Confessions of a Trickbaby; Confessions of an Action Star; Until the Night; Iowa; Net Worth; BMT: Sex and the City 2; Bones; Notes: Mostly does voice work these days and apparently is a personal trainer to other actors as well.)

Budget/Gross – $16,000,000 / Domestic: $7,316,658 (Worldwide: $8,378,853)

(Disastrous, but I’m also highly skeptical of that budget. It seems unlikely they forked over $15 million+ for a haunted house film starring notable non-actor Snoop Dogg.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 25% (18/71): Slow to start, the sleek looking Bones is more silly than scary.

(At least it is sleek looking though. That seems somewhat promising.)

Reviewer Highlight: A garish, grotesque slab of silliness drowned in bloody visual effects overkill with an end result that is more horrible than horrific. – Michael Rechtshaffen, Hollywood Reporter

Poster – Boners

(I dig it. I think the only odd thing about it is that they treat Snoop Dogg like he’s a) the star of the film and b) the equivalent of Kevin Costner in star power. But the color is nice, the font is cool and sure, Snoop Dogg is the draw here. B+)

Tagline(s) – This Halloween, unleash the Dogg. (C+)

(I guess a play on unleash the hounds. That’s a phrase, right? Or is it release the hounds? I’m not sure it matters because this is a weird tagline. Short and going for something, but not good.)

Keyword(s) – blaxploitation

Top 10: Django Unchained (2012), Black Panther (2018), Jackie Brown (1997), Candyman (2021), Boyz n the Hood (1991), Black and Blue (2019), Straight Outta Compton (2015), Black Snake Moan (2006), The Last Dragon (1985), The First Purge (2018)

Future BMT: 48.5 Pootie Tang (2001), 42.6 Love Don’t Cost a Thing (2003), 37.8 Action Jackson (1988), 29.1 Waist Deep (2006), 25.3 Breakin’ (1984)

BMT: Shaft (2019), Alex Cross (2012), Proud Mary (2018), Steel (1997), Bones (2001), Never Die Alone (2004)

Matches: Dolemite Is My Name (2019), I’m Gonna Git You Sucka (1988), The Hebrew Hammer (2003), Naked Acts (1996), Willa Mae, the Church Lady Vampire Slayer (2009)

(Interesting that it pretty much died after the mid-90s right after on of the better examples of blaxploitation homage in Jackie Brown. Alex Cross isn’t blaxploitation though, so I’m also a bit skeptical of the keyword in general.)

Welcome to Earf (HoE Number 15) – The shortest path through The Movie Database cast lists using only BMT films is: Pam Grier is No. 2 billed in Bones and No. 5 billed in Ghosts of Mars, which also stars Jason Statham (No. 3 billed) who is in In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale (No. 1 billed) which also stars Leelee Sobieski (No. 3 billed) who is in Here on Earth (No. 1 billed) => (2 + 5) + (3 + 1) + (3 + 1) = 15. There is no shorter path at the moment.

Notes – This was the first time where Snoop Dogg and Pam Grier collaborated together on film – they have done music videos since 1993.

Snoop Dogg and Pam Grier play lovers who are supposed to be the same age. In reality, Grier was born in 1949 and Snoop Dogg was born in 1971 (a 22-year age difference).

Ernest Dickerson’s original cut was structured more like a classical horror movie. The movie was meant to be slow build but the studio wanted a more modern approach.

Mindhunters Recap

Jamie

Ooooooo, are you ready for a little dumb fun? That’s what you get with this And Then There Were None adaptation (?) that twists you up in a pretzel with its Saw/Final Destination/Dimension Films theatrics. You think LL Cool J is the bad guy? What are you, a total idiot? Better not think it’s our boy Val or cool as ice Slater, cause they’re just here for dat paycheck. Anyone else in the anonymous cast? Hell no, even though they all have reasons to want to knock off the rest of their mindhunter classmates. You really can’t go wrong with a tight serial killer whodunit like this.

Alright, well you can go a little wrong. The acting is… fine. The premise is… fine. The twists are… fine. Renny Harlin is… Renny Harlin (I’ve always thought he had a nice flair for the visual… just check out Cliffhanger). All that’s a compliment really. Everything is done up to snuff to give you something that’s supremely stupid and yet just entertaining enough to let it slide. Probably the biggest gripe is as they built up this somewhat convoluted high-level concept it became predictable if you weren’t prepared to sit back and turn off your brain. You see there are all these mindhunters (read: FBI profilers) in training. Only some of them are going to make it as they head into their final immersive exam on a secluded island. Everything goes to plan until they arrive and they start dying… like for real. Uh oh! As they each die off these geniuses finally realize that they are getting killed by their laughably specific “one weakness.” Like one guy always has to lead, another smokes, another never goes anywhere without a gun. Weird though, Johnny Lee Miller’s character is “their best driver and has the best aim.” You think maybe the guy who doesn’t have one of these traits might be different than the others in some way?

Anyway, even when that twist is revealed it’s done in a way that is at least stupid and fun and eventually I was like, fine, he’s a serial killer who’s life long plan was to kill FBI profilers so that he could show off how smart he is. Great, he’s Dexter but kills FBI profilers. It’s so stupid that I ended up respecting it. Enjoyable film. Did get me thinking about how the BMT gang would end up going in BMindhunTers.

  • Patrick – Brains of the operation and he can’t go anywhere without his sweet ‘puter. As he dives into the web with his VR headset he finds that it’s been affixed to his face! Talk about crispy graphics as the brightness is turned up to deadly levels.
  • Jamie – Brawn meets beauty as Jamie brings both to the table. You can’t keep a shirt on this hunk and that’s all well and good when you’re having fun in the sun. Not so fun when you are lured into a meat locker with promises of a rad party. 
  • Kyle – Kyle can’t resist all things submarine related and so when he gets a note that says “meet me on the submarine,” he runs right down there. What’s on the sub? A submarine sandwich party of course. Too bad those ‘wiches are poisoned.
  • Robotron 3000 – Our robot helper is always going rogue and solving mysteries. That loveable scamp! In fact there is nothing that isn’t totally awesome about Robotron 3000. Not sure what his weakness is, probably nothing to worry about and definitely not the one killing everyone with his robot strength and robot brain.

Sounds about right. I can’t believe I haven’t mentioned the other two employees of BMTHQ before. Patrick?

Patrick

‘Ello everyone! Mindhunters? More like Mindcandy, amirite? This movie has a major claim to fame: my wife insisted that she continue to watch this film with me. It’s obviously fun for the whole family. Let’s go!

  • If you know anything about Ten Little Indians by Agatha Christie eventually guessing who the killer is is trivial since, spoilies, you just have to think through who could possibly be the “red herring” death in the whole affair.
  • I do love serial killer nonsense though. The bad ones are just so amusing in how over the top they are.
  • LL Cool J is fine. The rest of the actors I could mostly give or take. The fact that Val Kilmer and Christian Slater both appear in about 25% of the movie and are top billings is a bit shocking. I assume that is intentional.
  • I did genuinely like the film though. It is like The Bone Collector (which, yes, will be a future BMT, and yes, I watched on a plane by accident because I assumed that this weird Denzel Washington film couldn’t possibly have a sub-40% Rotten Tomatoes score). Trashy but fun.
  • I’m honestly grasping a bit at what to say. We are on a bit of a streak here. Lots of okay-ish films where the worst you can really say is “not for me” and the best you can say is “not exactly high art, but I had fun with it.” So I’ll just leave it there.. I’m quite pleased I got to watch Mindhunters for BMT because this is exactly the type of film I would have otherwise watched on a plane.
  • A fun Setting as a Character (Where?) for, if I was understanding correctly, the film mostly taking place on or near the island of the original Roanoke colony (which makes sense for a training exercise from Quantico I suppose). Obviously going to give it a Worst Twist (How?) for the inevitable reveal that Jonny Lee Miller was the killer all along. And definitely closest to BMT, despite liking it quite a bit it is an objectively silly genre and film.

Obviously I would have loved a sequel to this … but do you know what is better than a sequel? A prequel! Give me that traumatic backstory of Val Kilmer as FBI profiler and the case that got him relegated to teaching! As a matter of fact, cast Jack Kilmer (who is currently 26 years old) as a prodigy profiler in the profiling group at Quantico and do a whole series of his early years. Then roll that into a trilogy of films which culminate in his ultimate dismissal as an official profiler. It’s brilliant. Unfortunately Mindhunter is now taken by a better show, so I think you’d have to augment the name to like FBI: The Mindhunter Project or something.

Cheerios,

The Sklogs

Mindhunters Quiz

Oh man, so get this. I was on my normal Spring retreat with my FBI serial killer profiler buddies, when I was guzzling some drugged coffee and fell asleep. I don’t remember a thing now! Do you remember what happened in Mindhunters?

Pop Quiz Hot Shot!

1) In the beginning of the film we see two of our profilers enter a super creepy house. How do they know this is the house they are looking for, and why do they go in without backup?

2) LL Cool J is a detective who is going to observe the exercise on the island. Where does he work and why is he going along? 

3) What is the MO of the fictional (?) killer The Puppeteer? And how does Christian Slater die? 

4) There are a few more deaths. How did they occur? As many as you can.

5) It gets a bit confusing now, but who was the killer and why?

Bonus Question: In a mid-credits tease for a sequel we see Sara Moore back home recovering from her ordeals when she receives a call. From whom?

Answers

Mindhunters Preview

When the time machine settles, LePumice stares in awe at the thousands of teeny-boppers streaming into a nearby stadium as fireworks go off overhead. “What thuuuuu…” he mutters dumbly and Jamie and Patrick shake their heads in embarrassment. “It was… a weird time in our lives. I’m a little surprised you didn’t recognize us,” Jamie says and he and Patrick strike their signature PaJama ParTy Pose. Patrick coughs uncomfortably, “it doesn’t work as well without Parsons and Ty in the mix.” LePumice is shocked beyond words. “You… you were PaJama ParTy? The most massive boy band of the early 2000s? I was… I am a giant fan. How did that one hit go? ‘I need you girl, don’t be tardy. Keep it casual…’” Jamie completes the lyrics quietly, “‘at my pajama party.’” LePumice’s mind is blown. It seems impossible that the former members of PaJama ParTy could walk around without constantly being mobbed by legions of fans, but then again Jamie and Patrick had since become famous as the Bad Movie Twins and Parsons McPhee and Ty Whistler… well… “What ever happened to the other members of the group?” LePumice says, struggling to remember when he had last heard their names, even. Jamie and Patrick stare wistfully into the distance at the stadium. “You’ll find out tonight, I guess,” Patrick says sadly, “This was our last concert.” It’s August 16th, 2003, a sweltering evening in El Paso, Texas, and it’s the night that PaJama ParTy died. They were brought here for a reason, but what? To keep the band together? To save Ty from himself? To simply keep the concert from its disastrous conclusion? It didn’t matter what, first they had to get backstage. “Get in the right frame of mind, we’re going hunting.” Patrick states. That’s right! We’re watching the LL Cool J classic, Mindhunters. It’s a story about a serial killer on an island and it’s a totally original concept. Let’s go!  

Mindhunters (2004) – BMeTric: 23.5; Notability: 37

StreetCreditReport.com – BMeTric: top 31.2%; Notability: top 22.0%; Rotten Tomatoes: top 23.5%; Higher BMeT: Catwoman, Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2, You Got Served, Torque, Taxi, Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen, Soul Plane, Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid, Garfield, Thunderbirds, Seed of Chucky, Envy, Godsend, Agent Cody Banks 2: Destination London, Fat Albert, Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed, New York Minute, Exorcist: The Beginning, First Daughter, The Stepford Wives, and 58 more; Higher Notability: Catwoman, Shark Tale, Van Helsing, The Chronicles of Riddick, King Arthur, Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed, Alexander, After the Sunset, Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason, Blade: Trinity, She Hate Me, The Stepford Wives, Fat Albert, Man on Fire, Meet the Fockers, Around the World in 80 Days, The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement, Along Came Polly, The Phantom of the Opera, Alien vs. Predator, and 35 more; Lower RT: Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2, Twisted, My Baby’s Daddy, The Whole Ten Yards, Godsend, Yu-Gi-Oh!: The Movie – Pyramid of Light, The Cookout, Christmas with the Kranks, Johnson Family Vacation, Envy, Surviving Christmas, First Daughter, Catwoman, The Dust Factory, Taxi, House of D, Exorcist: The Beginning, New York Minute, Employee of the Month, A Cinderella Story, and 37 more; Notes: Once again, pretty good IMDb rating. Nearly 6.5 which I think would be a pretty convincing cutoff. Looking at the BMeT films, we really need to watch You Got Served.

RogerEbert.com – 2.5 stars – One of Those Among Us Is a Killer, and We Cannot Leave This (a) Isolated Country Estate, (b) Besieged Police Station, (c) Antarctic Research Outpost, (d) Haunted House, (e) Space Station (f) Rogue Planet or (g) Summer Camp until we find out who it is — or until we all die. It is a most ancient and dependable formula, invariably surprising us with the identity of the killer, because the evidence is carefully rigged to point first to one suspect and then another, until they persuasively clear their names by getting murdered.

(In another part of the review Ebert suggests that if you’ve seen The Third Man it will help immensely in determining the killer in the film. Hinteresting. I have not seem that film.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZTLaj8JuIsc/

(I’m jazzed up baby! A little sneak preview of what BMT has in store for us, because after watching this Dimension masterpiece we are just itched to watch more of these hilarious and dumb Dimension films. Buckle up.)

DirectorsRenny Harlin – ( Known For: The Misfits; Cleaner; Die Hard 2; Deep Blue Sea; The Long Kiss Goodnight; Cliffhanger; Devil’s Pass; A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master; 5 Days of War; Skiptrace; Prison; Born American; Bodies at Rest; Legend of the Ancient Sword; Future BMT: The Adventures of Ford Fairlane; Exorcist: The Beginning; 12 Rounds; BMT: The Covenant; Mindhunters; The Legend of Hercules; Cutthroat Island; Driven; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Director in 1991 for The Adventures of Ford Fairlane; in 1996 for Cutthroat Island; in 2002 for Driven; in 2005 for Exorcist: The Beginning; in 2015 for The Legend of Hercules; and in 2022 for The Misfits; Notes: The Legend of Hercules! He looooooooves poppin’ abs. That’s all I know about him. Apparently his original last name was Harjola, and he’s considered the most successful Finnish director in Hollywood history.)

WritersWayne Kramer – ( Known For: Running Scared; The Cooler; Crossing Over; BMT: Mindhunters; Notes: Born in South Africa. He also directed The Cooler, for which Alec Baldwin was nominated for an Academy Award.)

Kevin Brodbin – ( Known For: Constantine; The Siege of Jadotville; BMT: Mindhunters; The Glimmer Man; Notes: There is really nothing about this guy despite writing The Glimmer Man of all things. He still seemingly makes movies, so I assume he mostly does uncredited stuff.)

ActorsVal Kilmer – ( Known For: Heat; Top Gun; Tombstone; True Romance; Willow; The Missing; Deja Vu; The Prince of Egypt; Real Genius; The Doors; The Birthday Cake; Top Secret!; Kiss Kiss Bang Bang; Jay and Silent Bob Reboot; The Ghost and the Darkness; MacGruber; Song to Song; Kill the Irishman; Palo Alto; Twixt; Future BMT: Alexander; The Saint; Planes; Red Planet; At First Sight; The Real McCoy; Delgo; BMT: Batman Forever; The Snowman; The Island of Dr. Moreau; Mindhunters; The Love Guru; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Actor for The Saint in 1998; and Nominee for Worst Supporting Actor in 1997 for The Island of Dr. Moreau; and in 2005 for Alexander; Notes: Notably suffered from throat cancer, but he has been cancer free for a few years now. We’ll see what happens with Top Gun 2, which he is in. They say they’ve recreated his voice using AI technology, so there might be a way for him to return to consistent acting which would be kind of a cool story.)

LL Cool J – ( Known For: Charlie’s Angels; S.W.A.T.; Deep Blue Sea; Any Given Sunday; Halloween H20: 20 Years Later; The Hard Way; Last Holiday; Edison; Deliver Us from Eva; Touch; The Deal; Out-of-Sync; Future BMT: Wildcats; B*A*P*S; In Too Deep; Woo; Kingdom Come; Slow Burn; Caught Up; BMT: Mindhunters; Toys; Rollerball; Grudge Match; Notes: Ladies love him. Was a very early signing for Def Jam Recordings releasing his first album in 1985.)

Christian Slater – ( Known For: True Romance; Nymphomaniac: Vol. I; Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles; Heathers; Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery; Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves; Zoolander; We Can Be Heroes; Pump Up the Volume; The Name of the Rose; FernGully: The Last Rainforest; Broken Arrow; Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country; The Legend of Billie Jean; Very Bad Things; Ask Me Anything; The Wife; Tales from the Darkside: The Movie; The Contender; Bullet to the Head; Future BMT: Windtalkers; The Wizard; Hot Tub Time Machine 2; Igor; Bed of Roses; Mobsters; Kuffs; Jimmy Hollywood; The Ten Commandments; BMT: Young Guns II; Mindhunters; 3000 Miles to Graceland; Alone in the Dark; Hard Rain; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Supporting Actor in 1992 for Mobsters, and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves; Notes: His mother was a casting director in Hollywood (including several of his films) which is how his family (including his half-brother) got into acting.)

Budget/Gross – $27 million / Domestic: $4,480,744 (Worldwide: $21,148,829)

(Oh wow, horrible. Makes sense they would go big for it, but seriously, that is a huge bomb. Didn’t even get back to the budget level worldwide.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 24% (29/119): A retread of Ten Little Indians that lacks the source material’s wit.

(HAHAHAHA. You think? Oh Mindhunters starring Val Kilmer, LL Cool J, and Christian Slater couldn’t match wits with Agatha Christie? Shocking.)

Reviewer Highlight: The illogic of the situation is so extreme that the final confrontation plays like an afterthought. – Robert Koehler, Variety.

Poster – Mindskloggers

(Wow! That’s the worst! I always hope to click on a link and have that beautiful The Avengers (1998) feeling and boy this gets close. It makes no sense, the coloring is terrible, the font is mostly bullshit as is the spacing, and it actually hurts my eyes. It’s near anti-perfection! Wow. F.)

Tagline(s) – For seven elite profilers, finding a serial killer is a process of elimination. Their own. (D)

(This is all you need to know to see how unoriginal this all is. This is clearly Ten Little Indians. Also it’s far too long even if I kinda like the ultimate payoff.)

Keyword(s) – serial-killer

Top 10: The Batman (2022), Fresh (2022), Scream (2022), Batman Begins (2005), Joker (2019), Venom: Let There Be Carnage (2021), Scream (1996), Pulp Fiction (1994), Se7en (1995), Prisoners (2013)

Future BMT: 85.3 Halloween: Resurrection (2002), 78.0 Jeepers Creepers III (2017), 74.8 Psycho (1998), 70.6 Halloween II (2009), 70.3 , 70.1 Black Christmas (2006), 65.7 Valentine (2001), 64.8 My Soul to Take (2010), 62.8 The Hills Have Eyes 2 (2007), 61.7 Brahms: The Boy II (2020)

BMT: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003), The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning (2006), Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995), Friday the 13th (2009), Leatherface: Texas Chainsaw Massacre III (1990), I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997), Urban Legend (1998), Kiss the Girls (1997), The Snowman (2017), Zoolander 2 (2016), Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (1984), Color of Night (1994), Halloween II (1981), I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (1998), Jade (1995), Problem Child (1990), Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988), 88 Minutes (2007), Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1982), Species II (1998), Untraceable (2008), I Know Who Killed Me (2007), Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991), Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo (2005), Vampire in Brooklyn (1995), Urban Legends: Final Cut (2000), The Glimmer Man (1996), Bless the Child (2000), Never Talk to Strangers (1995)

Matches: The Batman (2022), Venom: Let There Be Carnage (2021), Scream (1996), Se7en (1995), The Silence of the Lambs (1991), The Little Things (2021), Scary Movie (2000), Monster (2003), The Lovely Bones (2009), Freaky (2020), Sherlock Holmes (2009), Saw (2004), Red Dragon (2002), In the Shadow of the Moon (2019), Kiss the Girls (1997), The Cell (2000), House of 1000 Corpses (2003), Manhunter (1986), Funny Games (2007), Midnight in the Switchgrass (2021), The Bone Collector (1999), Taking Lives (2004), The Gangster, the Cop, the Devil (2019), Child’s Play (1988), The Frozen Ground (2013), Disturbia (2007), Nightbreed (1990), Mr. Brooks (2007), The Howling (1981), The Poughkeepsie Tapes (2007), The Midnight Meat Train (2008), Frequency (2000), Halloween: Resurrection (2002), Saw II (2005), Solace (2015), No Man of God (2021), Blitz (2011), Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998), Maniac (2012), Virtuosity (1995), Problem Child (1990), Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995), Cruising (1980), … (and many more)

(I think I’ve mentioned it before, but yeah. We really got into serial killers in the 90s. This film isn’t on the graph because it actually doesn’t have that keyword. But surely it must? It is, by definition, about a serial killer killing serial killer profilers.)

Welcome to Earf (HoE Number 8) – The shortest path through The Movie Database cast lists using only BMT films is: LL Cool J is No. 3 billed in Mindhunters and No. 2 billed in Rollerball, which also stars Chris Klein (No. 1 billed) who is in Here on Earth (No. 2 billed) => (3 + 2) + (1 + 2) = 8. There is no shorter path at the moment.

Notes – The studio did not cast any character as a lead. Director Renny Harlin wanted no dummy characters or obvious victims and established a sense that “anyone could die at any moment” in the film.

The primary reason the film was able to be done on such a modest budget was due to a generous tax break from the Dutch government.

As part of LL Cool J’s preparation, he lost nearly 40 pounds and spent time with homicide detectives in the Philadelphia (PA) Police Dept.

The cast met with FBI personnel and underwent military weapons training for their roles.

Several variations of the ending were filmed. After numerous test screening were held in the United States in 2003, the final version of the film was determined for theatrical release.

Wayne Kramer sold the original spec screenplay of “Mindhunters” to 20th Century Fox. The title of his screenplay was originally called “UNSUB” (Unknown Subject) – but Fox executives preferred the title: MINDHUNTERS and changed it right before the deal was announced to the entertainment press. Kramer never felt comfortable with the title change because there was already a non-fiction book by John Douglas called MINDHUNTER.

The FBI maintains a vaunted computerized profiling operation in Quantico, Virginia. “Mindhunters” is an unofficial name for the profilers that handle the 300-plus referrals a year from local, state and federal law enforcement agencies.

Director Renny Harlin noted that the ensemble cast had a fantastic time living in Amsterdam for the shoot. “The main thing was to cut down on people’s fun, to make sure they showed up for work.”

To maximize tax breaks and keep the budget at the lowest possible level, the film was moved to England for post-production.

Originally set for a US theatrical release in 2003 and then early 2004, the film was pushed back to 4 June 2004. Secondary to numerous positive test screenings, it was pushed back once again to facilitate improved marketing of the film. But then two massive waves of layoffs occurred at Miramax and Dimension during this time, and the infamous Disney/Miramax split reached its height. The film remained in the Dimension vaults unreleased during this time. When the Disney and Miramax divorce was finally completed, numerous films under the Dimension label were released. This film finally made its theatrical debut in the United States on 13 May 2005.

A large part of the movie was filmed on the location where the Dutch anti riot police (Mobiele Eenheid) is trained. It’s a fake village where riots are simulated. There are still some traces of the movie. For instance, there still hangs a large poster on a wall, as can be seen in the movie.

The “Most Wanted” posters in the FBI Academy are of workers from the production’s art department.

In order to maintain its modest budget, the score was part of a package. A single fee covered the composer’s bill and also the cost of executing the score and orchestration, musicians for the non-electronic sections, mixing, and recording studio time.

Ehren Kruger did uncredited rewrites, based on Dimension’s belief in his script-doctoring capabilities often presented in their releases.