Monday, August 15, 2016

Tape Headz Session 8: Eyes Wide Shut (1999)

Having just completed a round of Tape Headz, we immediately jumped into the next one. The only returning tape was You Got Served, although The Hobbit and Suicide Kings have been discussed as potential nominees for weeks.

This was a tough one to decide. While Dave was vocal about his desire to watch the Cure tape, everyone else's affections were split between multiple films. Everyone thought long and hard.

In the end, the ratings came out like so:

Eyes Wide Shut: 137
The Cure - Galore: 61
America Destroyed By Design: 21
Suicide Kings: 41
Cool Surface: 30
You Got Served: 30
The Hobbit: 40
Ninja Destroyer: 40

Everyone split up their votes, but Josh put 97 of his points to Eyes Wide Shut. Thus, we were thrust into an underground of sex and secrets.

But first we had to figure out next session's returning tapes. Suicide Kings inched it's way to third because Josh gave it one extra point, so The Hobbit and Ninja Destroyers were on the chopping block. Someone called tails on The Hobbit and it made it for the next session.

At nearly three hours long, Eyes Wide Shut was easily the longest film Tape Headz has encountered. It was a struggle, and we had many side conversations, but everyone generally enjoyed the film.

For Kool-Kasting, Nicole and Tom's bizarre over-acting was praised. Visual-Touchdowns had a lot more discussion, including the bright Christmas lights and trees that decorate almost every set. Crystal really appreciated the boob lights in the ballroom scene. The prostitute college student's room received a lot of attention, with everyone pointing out individual aspects of the set design, including how the TV was turned off and the intro to Sociology book sitting on the dresser. Of course, the masquerade orgy and all of the attendees masks were also praised. Everything of note in the film was super visual and Crystal and Josh both gave this category a bonus point for it.

The Sneak-Peaks sucked, limited to a commercial for a site called No idea if it still exists and will not check, but most people enjoyed it and gave it one point. Dave and Sean dropped their bonus points on the Eye-Candy section as the film featured numerous naked women. Nicole Kidman's butt was on display repeatedly in the first forty-five minutes. A lot of people really liked the sexy scene where the song from the commercials that's all "She did a bad bad thing" repeated over and over.

Most gave three towards Sweet-Emotion. Tom Cruise's general fear and confusion throughout the film exhibit a ton of drama. Crystal loved the awkward conversation between Tom and Nick Nightingale with the note and password.

Hip-Tunes were all over the place. The "She did a bad bad thing" was great, Nick Nightingale played some great tunes, the orgy drone rules, and the single-note piano motif that appears all over the place were great. Spiffy-Scripting also received threes from most with the generally strange disjointed feel of most conversations really sticking out.

Cover-Appeal was a little more divisive. Dave and Sean said it was ho-hum and gave it a one, while Crystal and Josh both plopped down a two and said they generally liked it. At this point we were really burnt out and couldn't discuss much else outside of how everyone wanted to go to bed. Actually, Dave didn't want to go to bed.

Eyes Wide Shut received some high scores, high enough that it's currently the highest rated Tape Headz film. If it had some better trailers, it probably would have broken the twenty spot. Josh has a hunch that The Cure - Galore, if it has some trailers, might break this record, but we'll just have to wait and see.


Tape Headz Session 7: Antz (1998)

When Sean pulled Antz out of his bag, it lit up the room. Everybody started discussing Antz and A Bugs Life. Josh recalled A Bugs Life having a horrible story and everyone agreed, while Dave and Sean discussed how little the ant on the front looked like Woody Allen.

We weren't really doing anything before we started, but I made Sean take this picture where it looked like he was doing something anyway.

For the selections, only the previous top four returned, and surprisingly, none of them received many votes. 

UFO Government Cover-Ups: 20
Antz: 140
Duran Duran - Greatest The Videos: 50
Eyes Wide Shut: 50
Alien 3: 20
What Women Want: 20
The Cure - Galore: 50
Ninja Destroyer: 50

Nothing received zero votes, which was refreshing, but Sean packed all of his votes on Antz and Crystal also gave it forty points.

As we had an unprecedented four-way tie for second, we had to flip a coin for Ninja Destroyer and The Cure, then a separate one for Duran Duran and Eyes Wide Shut. Ninja Destroyer and Eyes Wide Shut, and the final coin toss was in The Cure's favor.

Jay sent us a meme that greatly empowered us.

People were generally in favor the of the Kool-Kasting, with Christopher Walken, Gene Hackman Sylvester Stallone, Woody Allen, Danny Glover, and a million other celebrity voice actors. Sean even gave it his bonus point. Visual-Touchdowns were a big deal. People liked the angular style of the computer-animated ants, while others were impressed by the giant magnifying glass section.

The only sneak peaks were crappy trailers of the Prince of Egypt and Babe: Pig in the City. We have yet to find a film that received unanimous threes for sneak peeks. Eye-Candy was relegated to the beefy Sylvester Stallone ant by Sean and me.

Sweet-Emotion oozed from the film. Josh's personal favorite was Sylvester Stallone and some random worker ants love, while others generally appreciated the drama and romance of it all. Nobody gave it less than a two. Dave and Sean gave it Hip-Tunes for the dance scene's music and for the screaming doppler effect on a shoe.

Spiffy-Scripting points were given by many for the general plot and for some great lines. "The little guy made it" and "You dah ant!" were Sean's favorites, while Dave generally appreciated the more mature tone of the film compared to crap like A Bug's Life. Everyone gave two for Cover-Appeal except Dave, who really felt like it summed up the film perfectly.

We decided to rate another film about three minutes later, so that's coming up next!


Friday, August 5, 2016

Tape Headz Session 6: Small Soldiers (1998)

I made Sean leave over his copy of Small Soldiers since it made the top four last time. It's funny, he told everyone that he actually borrowed it from a family member intending on returning it that night. Evidently Sean really trusts us to take care of someone else's stuff. That's what you risk when putting stuff up for the vote I guess.

Anyway, here are the films!

Two of last weeks tops are knocked out of contention. Mortal Kombat Annihilation  was predictable since Justin single-handedly voted it in the top four, but lack of The Black Hole love was definitely a surprise. Small Soldiers was the only one everyone put points to, so it's no surprise that it won out.

Small Soldiers - 100
Alien 3 - 70
What Women Want - 50
UFO Government Cover- 60
The Black Hole - 40
Gamera - 50
Mortal Kombat Annihilation - 0
You Got Served - 30

Dave votes. Note his both hands and toes giving input.
There was a distinct lack of Sneak-Peaks, with only a commercial for the film's toyline, soundtrack, and video game. It's use of Edwin Starr's classic "War" amused everyone though and we all gave it a point.

Kool-Kasting received at least a two from everyone, with Phil Hartman, Jay Mohr, David Cross, Tommy Lee Jones, and Dennis Leary giving the film a ridiculously '90s cast. It starts strong with some ridiculous scenes involving Jay Mohr and David Cross being bumbling toy goofs and Dennis Leary just doing his "I eat red meat and talk really fast" schtick.

Visual-Touchdown's were much more divisive: only Dave gave it more than a one. While most of us were only impressed by the animatronic's for the Archer character and a Powerman 5000 poster, Dave was nostalgic for the ridiculous CG toys. The one Archer scene in particular that won the majority of us is when he's getting licked by a cat.

While some gave an Eye-Candy point for Kirsten Dunst, Sweet-Emotion was felt by all at the aforementioned Archer cat-lick. Crystal gave it another point for Archer's badassery, while others appreciated the Phil Hartman blooper at the end. Everyone gave one Hip-Tune for the inclusion of the "War" song.

Crystal and Josh gave Spiffy-Scripting one point, while Sean gave it two and Dave gave it three. There's definitely a lot more going on under the hood than any eight year old could comprehend, with all sorts of anti-materialism jokes and there's-too-much-violence-for-kids going on, but we all agreed it's weird that the film quickly became subject to a crass consumer campaign. We recalled all the action figure ads prominently showing off the bad guy soldiers, ignoring the good guy Gorgonites entirely. The film's pretty edgy, but it feels dumbed down in most ways. The teenage boy lead gets stabbed like thirty times and there's a little blood, but he just shrugs it off like nothing ever happened. The soldiers make all sorts of lewd comments at a set of Barbie dolls, cutting to their breasts and at one point a vacant bed, but the Barbies only get used as a secondary army. While the film also constantly alludes to how the lead is a badass who got kicked out of school(s), it never bothers to show how he's a degenerate. In fact, he looks like a sniveling nerd.

Still, there's quite a bit of good humor, especially at the beginning where Nick Nitro's face appears on a screen and he shouts his name really loud. Archer constantly repeating the word "Gorgonites" for the first forty-five minutes of the film was pretty cool too. Unfortunately, nobody gave the cover any points because it's awful.

The film scored 8/8/12/16, giving it a final score of 11. This puts it above the bottom rung of the reviews but still below the majority of films that everyone enjoyed, so it sounds legit.