Posts Tagged ‘Michelle Bauer’

Movie Review: 1313: Wicked Stepbrother (2011)

October 3, 2012

1313 Week is a week dedicated to reviewing David DeCoteau’s homoerotic franchise. Partly an experiment to see if I can survive an entire week of the films, I hope you enjoy this week.

Remember: DOI.
Don’t overthink it.

Frank (Kayde McMullen) and Kelly (Jarrid Balis)

That’s sound advice coming from two otherwise bland characters. Fortunately it’s almost impossible to overthink 1313: Wicked Stepbrother unless the intent is to rationalize it, which I don’t intend to do. Spoiler: This movie is horrible.

Written by Moses Rutegar and directed by David DeCoteau, Wicked Stepbrother doesn’t have the greatest of plots. Jarrod (Jordan Nichols), the son of a deceased millionaire, has just turned 18 and earned the right to his late father’s estate. Unfortunately for his stepmother and stepbrother, Minerva (Michelle Bauer) and Sebastian (Jake Madden) respectively, Jarrod doesn’t like them and has no intention of letting them keep any of his inheritance. Drama ensues, and what should be a happy birthday for Jarrod and his party guests turns into a bloodbath.

And I just made Wicked Stepbrother sound immeasurably better than it actually is. Sorry.

This movie starts out with a guy wearing his shirt, which had me excited at the idea that it might not be 75 minutes of skin. Of course less than a minute later my hopes and dreams were shattered, and then the movie proceeded to kill my expectations over and over again. You know the phrase “just when you think things can’t get any worse, they do”? That certainly applies here. Every single time that I thought “Wicked Stepbrother can’t get any worse”, it outright proved me wrong, without fail, no prisoners taken. This movie (if you want to call it a movie) sucks.

My disbelief is even established in my notes. The following is what I jotted down in a roughly two minute span:

Oh comeoncomeoncomeon.

This can’t get any worse.

I lied. It just got way worse.

CANNOT UNSEE

This movie is closer to pornography than any of the other 1313 films that I’ve seen. There’s one point in Wicked Stepbrother where Jarrod and his stepmother start making out, and her son joins in turning the movie into a twisted incest threesome. It would be one thing if this was full-on porn and there was intercourse, because it would then at least appeal to people with freaky incest fetishes. As is, it’s more of a “WHY GOD WHY” type thing. It’s disaster on top of disaster, as the non-freaky stuff is somehow less exciting than the incest!

Honestly, if you’re entertained by random, topless men wandering around a mansion shouting “Hello?” until their unclimactic demise (which is what most of Wicked Stepbrother is), I have a bridge to sell you.

Actor Slash Model has a teleportation problem, Wicked Stepbrother has a dimension problem. Almost every time one of Jarrod’s party guests arrive at his mansion, they’re greeted with silence as the place is empty. But in scenes prior and following Jarrod and his step family are clearly in the mansion, so where do they go? The only logical explanation is that the main characters and party guests are on two different planes, until somebody has to die. That actually isn’t a bad idea, the problem is that Wicked Stepbrother isn’t supposed to be multi-dimensional.

(Speaking of Actor Slash Model, it shares sets, props, and even some actors with this movie. While cutting costs is great, it’s very noticeable.)

It isn’t all bad, though. What I did like about Wicked Stepbrother is its score, which I can definitely write to. It’s not exciting, it doesn’t even fit the movie at all, but I found myself not dreading it. Infact, this movie would be immeasurably better if it was the score and nothing else. Only then would I not be missing my 75 minutes. I wish I could say more good things, but I really can’t. There isn’t any valid reason to recommend Wicked Stepbrother to anyone in the world, but it’s on Netflix USA as of this writing for any curious masochistic parties. Really, though, skip this one.

Really.

Movie Review: 1313: Actor Slash Model (2011)

October 2, 2012

1313 Week is a week dedicated to reviewing David DeCoteau’s homoerotic franchise. Partly an experiment to see if I can survive an entire week of the films, I hope you enjoy this week.

Being jealous of others who steal the jobs which you’ve earned the right to is something that we’ve all experienced. Fortunately most of us have the common sense to not kill the undeserved, and for that we should give ourselves a pat on the back. Unfortunately there are people who don’t have the good sense that we do, and they’re the ones whom movie studios consult for ideas. And that brings us to 1313: Actor Slash Model

Written by Barbara Kymlicka and directed by David DeCoteau, Actor Slash Model follows Jerry (Chase Bennett), an aspiring actor who can’t land a gig. The problem is that Jerry looks like an average guy, and loses every role he auditions for to models. Eventually enough becomes enough and push comes to shove. Jerry snaps and wields his knife at a TV producer’s (Michelle Bauer) party, where a body count of body builders builds up fast.

Say that last sentence ten times fast.

I’m going to say something very controversial: I got a kick out of this movie. Actor Slash Model isn’t anything good by any measure, but it’s a revolution in the 1313 franchise for two reasons: Shirts and shorts. Yes, the male characters sometimes wear clothes, which should surprise you if you know anything about this franchise. I’ve been so conditioned to not expect anything more than underwear when watching these movies that its distracting.

Otherwise, the cast did well and couldn’t have been cast better. Actor Slash Model is next to nothing but a jealous maniac snob stabbing models who he feels stole his acting career. Chase Bennett plays a good jealous maniac snob, and the models are played by men who look like models. “Acting” isn’t really a requirement, and because of that, this is one of the most genuinely performed movies ever!

The dialogue is believable, and Jerry’s actions and motives are believable too. Again, we have the good sense to not go mental and murderous when frustrated, but not everybody does. I’m sure we’ve all at least grumbled something unpleasant when we didn’t get a call back for a job that we were excited for. Despite its flaws which I’m about to detail, this movie is maybe more realistic than Hercules Unbound!

Most of the problems in Actor Slash Model are cosmetic. As an example, despite the many knife stabbings, there is never a drip of blood on screen or stains on the knife. This isn’t a budget issue, I have filmmaking friends that can put together a gore show for cheap. Normally the rule is that a movie doesn’t need to be gory to be good, but that isn’t true here, where I get the impression that someone is allergic to corn syrup.

Another really irritating thing is how Jerry seems to teleport. This movie takes place in a mansion, and there are times I swear that Jerry is on the first and second floor at the same time. Honestly this was cut together very poorly. On top of that, throughout the entire movie there’s a voiceover of Jerry’s rants against models which we’ve already seen him make. Boo to the editing room.

But the biggest, worst, most unforgivable problem is that some generic HTC smartphone gets a cameo with no iPhones in sight. That’s sacrilege!

Being perfectly clear, Actor Slash Model isn’t good. When there are thousands upon thousands of movies you can waste your time on, it’s hard to justify this one. On the other hand, if you’re ever dared into watching a movie from the 1313 franchise, this is the one you should pick; Unless you happen to like the prospect of watching hot guys in their underwear for 70 minutes. In that case, this is the one to skip.

Actor Slash Model is available on Netflix USA as of this writing, so take this information as you will.

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