MAY 1, 2007
Is it just me (yes) or does Wes Craven go out of his way to find the least interesting female leads in cinematic history to star in his "Wes Craven Presents" films? Carnival of Souls remake, They, Dracula 2000, and now Wishmaster all star the blandest goddamn women I have ever seen. I dunno if it's his attempt to have "natural" leads, but Christ.
There is no way in hell that this film would have gotten a wide release in this day and age. It lucked out by being the first film post-Scream to have Craven's name attached, which is pretty much the only thing that got it in theaters (and more shocking, a decent box office return) back in 1997. Because it's pretty goddamn bad. Besides our coma-inducing lead woman, the story is ridiculous, the direction is boring, and the Djinn's "don't you wish you could (whatever)" shtick grows real tired, real fast.
I also hate movies that stack in cameos. If they are supposed to be funny (such as in Behind the Mask), then it's fine. But this movie, for whatever reason, takes itself somewhat seriously, so it's just distracting to see Kane Hodder, Tony Todd, etc showing up for a scene, only to have the Djinn kill them. I don't know if this was sort of a sly way of saying "Hey, the Djinn is so powerful he can kill Candyman!" or whatever, but either way it's annoying. Robert Englund is the only 'icon' that actually has any sort of role, the rest are just reminding you of better movies.
The ending is one of the lamest in history. "I wish none of this happened" is what it basically comes down to. Go to hell, movie. If I spent 85 minutes watching your stupid plot unfold, the least you could do is not give the genie equivalent of "it was all a dream".
And Jesus CHRIST will people stop hiring Harry Manfredini for their movies? He cannot write ANYTHING that sounds even remotely different than his Friday the 13th score. I know some composers have a signature sound, but Harry goes the extra mile and has a signature EXACT SAME GODDAMN MUSIC.
One might wonder why this isn't labeled "Crap", and that is because KNB's effects are some of the best they have ever done (not too surprising, considering it was Robert Kurtzman, aka K, behind the camera). A skeleton rips itself out of its skin; a head is torn off with piano wire, people are shown eviscerated, etc. All top notch, and definitely worth seeing if you're a makeup effects enthusiast. Shame about everything around them though.
What say you?