Tag Archives: Classic

Review – Sonic Mania

There is no sound more terrifying, more nightmarish, than the countdown that signifies the final five seconds before Sonic the Hedgehog drowns. It has haunted gamers since 1991, when they first found themselves in the depths of the Labyrinth Zone; an underwater maze cleaved into the decaying ruins of an ancient civilisation, where glittering crystal stalactites hung from the ceiling and spears leapt from the stairs. Players loathed this level, still do to this day, which makes one wonder why Sega included such a level in every subsequent 2D Sonic game. The one in Sonic Mania is Hydrocity Zone, from Sonic 3, a better level set in a stone reservoir with an underground waterpark beneath it. But “better” is a relative term. That countdown hasn’t changed.

Since Sonic has become such a laughing stock, it can be difficult to believe that the blue hedgehog once rivalled Mario as the definitive video game mascot. This was in a gentler time, when video games were basically all 2D side-scrolling platformers, and the home console war was between Nintendo and Sega, and both companies only made games. But it was a time I grew up in. It was a time I adored. My childhood was 16-bit; Sonic’s games, as far as I was concerned, were masterpieces. Sonic Mania, then, is a game aimed directly at me, and at people like me, for whom the word “SEGA”, bellowed at a game’s start screen, had roughly the same impact as the words “I finished” might have to a twenty-something. Satisfaction. Pride. Bliss.

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Episode 68 – Jackie Chan and Police Story (1985)

Click Here To Play The Episode

This is Episode 68 of the Ready, Steady, Cut! Podcast. On this episode, to celebrate the return of Jackie Chan in The Foreigner, we discuss one of his classics – Police Story (1985).

We also discuss What’s Happening At Ready Steady Cut, Trailer Talk is Annihilation and as always, we play another game of You Can’t Beat Me! This week it is Star Wars Characters.

Episode Summary:

00:00 – Introduction and Episode Summary
03:19 – What’s Happening at Ready, Steady, Cut!
08:54 – Trailer Talk – Annihilation
17:31 –  Police Story (1985) Discussion
59:22 – Questions from Listeners
1:06:40 – You Can’t Beat Me – Star Wars Characters
1:28:48 – Final Comments

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Review – The Evil Dead

This review is part of our 31 Days of Horror series. You can check out the other posts by clicking these words.

When Ash (Bruce Campbell) and four of his friends decide to go and stay in the woods together for a week, they hope for a time they will never forget – and they certainly get more than they bargained for in that respect. Whilst they are all gathered around having dinner on their first night, the cellar door flies open. Ash and one of the others go to investigate and find all manner of strange things left down there by whoever was there before them. Amongst the objects found is a tape recording made by the previous inhabitant. The group listen to it, but soon turn it off when a mysterious call begins to play. However, by then it seems it was all too late, as evil spirits have been disturbed and they don’t appear to be overjoyed by such an occurrence. One by one, the demons possess each youngster until Ash is the only one left to survive the night of the evil dead.

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Review – The Thing (2011)

This review is part of our 31 Days of Horror series. You can check out the other posts by clicking these words.

The Thing is a film fuelled by an unlimited energy source: Paranoia. It chugs along tracks cleft through the Antarctic snow, relentless, pushing and shunting its characters and monsters and ideas into a composition roughly analogous to those found in John Carpenter’s peerless 1982 original. This is a worse film, by a significant margin, but it works with efficiency and a reasonable amount of competency, offering a handful of gory gotcha’s and explanations for a few titbits that Carpenter’s masterpiece left unresolved. (Ah, so that’s how the axe got embedded in the wall.)

The titular “thing” is an extraterrestrial mimic that can exactly imitate the body and behaviour of another life form, sucking them up and digesting them and spitting out their teeth fillings like chicken bones. The drama comes from not knowing which of the characters is currently housing the monster, but if this version of The Thing has a central failing, it’s that its shapeshifters are so shifty that it’s always easy to guess who they’re impersonating. It allows for some fun body-horror (hey, look, the guy with two heads!) and a smattering of scenes where the heroes cook their mates with flamethrowers, but there’s no pervading sense of dread, no horror, none of that insidious suspicion that stems from not knowing if your best friend, your wife, your boss is really out to get you.

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Review – No Country for Old Men

Why can’t a guy just find $2million and live happily ever after in his trailer with his wife? I’ll tell you why. Because if he did, you would never have been gifted with this absolute gem by the Coen brothers.

War veteran Llewelyn Moss (Josh Brolin) thinks all of his birthdays have come at once when he stumbles across a bungled drug deal and finds the money used to pay for the drugs there for the taking. He goes home with the money, but it would seem that he is not the only one who wants it, as Anton Chigurh (Javier Bardem) makes it his personal business to see that he also gets his hands on the cash. However, Chigurh is a murderous psychopath, therefore anybody who gets in the way of this, or just generally crosses his path, is going to wind up dead some way or another. In essence, No Country for Old Men is a cat and mouse chase where the mouse stands to win everything.

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Review – Children of Men

It is 2027, and in a chaotic world where women have become infertile, it is down to one man to ensure the safety of one miraculously pregnant woman.

Office worker Theo Faron (Clive Owen) leads a fairly normal life, or as normal as life can be given the fact that he, along with the rest of the planet, are living under the weight of knowing that the human race is heading for annihilation. This all changes when an old flame (Julianne Moore) shows up making demands of Theo in exchange for a considerable amount of money. He reluctantly accepts her offer and soon finds himself as the sole guardian of the first and only pregnant woman for 18 years, with a terrorist organisation hot on their tails hoping to seize the child when it’s born.

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Review – The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)

This review is part of our 31 Days of Horror series. You can check out the other posts by clicking these words.

Five friends visiting their grandfather’s house in the country are terrorised by a chainsaw wielding killer and his grave robbing, cannibalistic relatives.

After hearing the news that vandals have desecrated the graveyard in which their grandfather was buried, Sally (Marilyn Burns) and Franklin (Bill A. Partain) travel out to the country with a few friends to see whether their dearly departed had been disturbed. After discovering all is well, the siblings decide to go and visit their grandpa’s old house. On the way, they pick up a weird looking hitchhiker who cuts himself and slashes Franklin before being kicked out of the camper van. When they reach the old house, a couple of the youngsters go off in search for fuel for the van and they discover another farmhouse with a working generator. They go inside and are soon murdered by the chainsaw mad man we’ve all come to know as Leatherface. When the pair fail to return home, the remaining three friends decide to go looking and, one by one, they are picked off by the neighbours.

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