Sunday, September 16, 2012

The film that launched a thousand riots

The Innocence of Muslims (aka "Desert Warriors" and "The Innocence of Bin Laden") (2012)
Starring: A Bunch of Really Terrible Actors
Director: Alan Roberts
Rating: Zero of Ten Stars

After a Christian doctor's cilinic is looted by an angry Muslim mob in Egypt, he reflects on the life of the Muslim prophet Mohammad (or something like that).

Muslim movie critics don't stand for no shitty biographical movies about their beloved prophet, as demonstrated by the burning of American embassies and the brutal rape and murder of an American diplomat. Their rage is completely misdirected, but understandable... not so much because a religious figure is put in a bad light, but because this film is so awful that I feel awkward even referring to it as a film. I don't think I've seen so much incompetent directing, badly framed scenes, horrible green-screen use, bad sound mixing, awful dialogue, and craptacular acting crammed into 13 minutes ever before.

Seriously... this is a film that should be viewed by no one. To describe it as amateurish is an insult to amateurs. I've seen at least one person say "It's like Ed Wood decided he hated Muslims"... and I have to disagree. Even on his worst day, Ed Wood showed more skill as a writer and a filmmaker as anyone involved with "Innocence of Muslims".

In fairness, all I've seen is the 13-minute highlight reel/preview that was posted to YouTube... but if this is the best bits of the film, I think 13 minutes is all I'd be able to stand.

In the entire thing, there's only one scene that is remotely well done--the one where young Mohammad is being seduced (?) by some woman who may or may not be doing it to drive away demons. (And I think the only reason I find the scene appealing is because it's so strange.)

Even that 13-minute preview is inept, assuming it was put together in an effort to promote the film and not intended to just be a collection of disjointed nonsense.

Ultimately. though, the most noteworthy thing about this piece of garbage is that it features what is perhaps the smallest "mob" ever put into a movie.

I'm not even going to bother embedding the YouTube video in this post. If you want to see for yourself what has psychopaths in the Middle East and Asia all stirred up, you can go there and do a search for yourself. However, I think you should just take my word for it and spend those minutes taking a walk or petting your cat or cleaning your bathroom. Any one of those activities will be more worthwhile than watching highlights from "Innocence of Muslims".

Thursday, September 6, 2012

'Catholic Ghoulgirls' is a sin

Catholic Ghoulgirls (2005)
Starring: Ally Melling, Vanessa Kessinger, Meghan McDowell, and Mark Brown
Director: Eamon Hardiman
Rating: Zero of Ten Stars

Kasey (Melling), Becky (Kessinger) and Maria (McDowell) are three rebellious Catholic schoolgirls who spend their days ditching class, smoking in alleys, and sneaking around with their boyfriends. So when zombies attack their town, it stands to reason that they kick monster but with swords and Kung Fu moves.

 That's a concept for a fun and trashy movie. It's the concept behind this movie, but while this is plenty of trashy, it's not much fun.

I think this film safely ranks among the most incompetent efforts I've ever had the misfortune t sit through. The story is so unfocused, badly structured, and overloaded with irrelevant characters that you'll have a hard time following it even if someone handed you a diagram and list of characters... and that's only the beginning of what's wrong with this film.

The direction is awful, the acting is so bad it can't even be described as amateurish, the camerawork is pedestrian (and sometimes out of focus), scenes are more often than not underlit or overlit, the editing is sloppy, and the sound mixing is so bad that you often can't hear the dialogue because of the soundtrack music or what should be ambient noise.

I always try to find something nice to say about a film, but I can't think of a single thing when it comes to this one. Maybe if writer/director Eamon Hardiman and executive producer James Hudnall had seen fit to have Hudnall write the script (assuming this is the same Hudnall who once wrote comic books for Eclipse, Marvel Comics, and DC Comics) at least the script would have been more coherent.