Monday, January 23, 2012

Wishmaster

***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion, that's fine. To each their own. I am just sharing my opinions and perspective. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 1-5. 1, of course, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being good and 5, being epic!

Wishmaster - 2 out of 5

I'm sure you've heard the phrase "be careful what you wish for."  Well, here's a horror film that built an entire franchise (albeit not a successful one) on that phrase and after watching the first one, I have to say that a part of me wishes I didn't see it...but a part of me is glad I did!

Robert Englund is in this...but not as Freddy so who cares?

Wishmaster is a story about an evil genie that, in order to take over the world, must grant its master three wishes because doing so gives him more power and will allow him to call his brethren to the world.  Yeah, I know, it makes no sense but it's a horror film and since when have the mythology of a horror film ever had to make sense?  Horror films are built on mysteries...like why are horror film fanboys so forgiving of the recycled crap that gets churned out year after year in the genre called horror?  Why do they crave cheap scares and not deep down terror?  Why did Paranormal Activity make so much money when it was boring as hell?

Sam Raimi's brother Ted...this is his reaction after watching Spider-man 3.

Since Wishmaster was a horror film, my expectations were incredibly low.  I sat down on my recliner anticipating no scares--and I got that--but I did have expectations to get some laughs--it's a horror film after all and I'm almost always guaranteed to get a good laugh out of them from the stupidity of it all (I'll be honest, I haven't been scared in a horror film in a long time).  This movie gave me comedy in spades and it is the only reason I can think of for you, my reader, to watch this one.  Grab a drink, grab some buds, get some friends (you like that?  A weed joke.), get some salty and sweet snacks, hit the couch and laugh your ass off at the absurdity of the piece of shit that is Wishmaster.

Oh no!  That box is about to crush that dummy.

Why is this movie so funny?  If the stupid story isn't enough, take the voice of the genie (or Djinn, as they call them in the film).  It's hard to put into words how he sounds but let's say that they must have got the actor from a community college drama department because he's playing it up like this could be his big break but doesn't understand how to be menacing.  To further try and make you imagine his voice, let me put it this way:  Emperor Palpatine from Star Wars did it better.

This is the natural form of the Djinn...

Another, extremely amusing fact about the film is the way the wishes are carried out.  Wishes backfiring on the wish-maker is nothing new in literature, film or entertainment in general.  It's a common element to have the wish turn around in an ironic way--like the Midas touch.  Well, the writers of this film tried to do that and I have to emphasize that they probably weren't actually trying.  All the backlash that comes from the wishes are just lazy and offer no real irony or wit in their construct.  For example, a woman wishes to be beautiful forever and the Djinn makes her a mannequin.  Now, I don't know about you but I don't think I've ever utter the phrase, "Man, that mannequin is beautiful."

And this is his human form.  I actually think I prefer the demon appearance, far less car salesmen like.

This brings me to my next point...the Djinn coxes all the wishes throughout the film and not only is he coaching his victims to wish, he's also pretty loose on the rules of what constitutes an actual request for a wish.  Often, the Djinn will ask something leading towards an outcome he wants and say, "Is this what you want?" and the person will answer with an affirmative and he'll give them the old screw job of a wish.  Then, at other times in the movie, he requires the wish-maker to actually spit out the phrase "I wish" from their word hole.  It's this kind of lazy writing that makes Wishmaster simultaneously extremely idiotic but immensely hilarious.  Not to mention it was clear that the filmmakers are probably not very book smart as the opening of the film sees the genie causing some havoc and an innocent victim is turned into a serpent...at least, we're suppose to assume it is a serpent since it is making a "hissing" noise.  The problem here, however, is the fact that the body of the poor individual more closely resembles the tail of a alligator or crocodile.  Oops.

Our heroine in the film slightly resembles Sarah Connor.  That wasn't a good thing because I kept
thinking how Terminator 2:  Judgement Day was a far better film than Wishmaster.

Wishmaster is about as bad as horror films get but, at the same time, it's as great as it can be as it delivers unintentional humor.  Sure, horror film fanboys will get a kick out of the fact that horror movie legends like Robert Englund, Kane Hodder and Angus Scrimm are in the film but guys like me who have become jaded by the world of horror that they turn to them more for a good laugh at the bad story, horrible acting or sub-par special effects will have a field day with a film that was clearly written, produced and released within a week--or at least I wish that was the case, it would explain the poor quality.

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