Wes Craven has had his share of ups and downs over the years (for every “A Nightmare on Elm Street,” there’s a “Shocker”), but when he fails, he fails hard, as is painfully evident with his latest film, “My Soul to Take.” Though it’s admirable of Craven to try and reinvigorate the slasher genre by introducing a horror villain for a new generation, the Riverton Ripper – a serial killer who reemerges 16 years after his mysterious disappearance to stalk a group of local kids who were born on the same day – simply doesn’t compare to icons like Freddy Krueger or Ghostface. It doesn’t help that Craven keeps him hidden for most of the film, because not only is there no suspense to the story, but the twist ending that he’s trying to protect is built around a single lie that falls apart as soon as the killer’s identity is revealed. The Ripper also isn’t very scary, and when he does come out to kill, it’s done in perhaps the most nonchalant, uninspired ways possible. Then again, the victims aren’t really deserving of any better, as they’re little more than cardboard cutouts of what I can only imagine Craven believes to be an accurate representation of modern day teenagers. This is low-grade horror at its worst, and unless you’re looking for some cheap laughs by skewering the movie “MST3K”-style, you’d be well advised to keep your distance.
We here at Bullz-Eye always knew that we wanted to run a piece in conjunction with the release of “Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince,” but what we didn’t know was what kind of piece it would be. We considered the matter, and we came to the conclusion that it would’ve been a little too easy to whip up a list of our favorite Hollywood wizards. In the midst of the discussion, however, an observation was raised about the film itself: what’s going to happen to these kids – Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and Emma Watson – after the last of the “Harry Potter” books has been adapted for the silver screen? Will they be able to rise above their roles and find work elsewhere, or are they destined to be remembered solely as Harry, Ron and Hermione? From there, we quickly began to bandy about the names of other folks who have and haven’t been able to score success in other cinematic identities, and the piece began to write itself. Ultimately, only one of our selections seemed impossible to pigeonhole as either “Forever Typecast” or “Escaped Typecasting,” and when you see that actor’s name, we think you’ll nod your head knowingly and understand exactly why we had that problem.
Here’s a sample of the piece, to hopefully tempt you into checking out the whole thing:
Mark Hamill, AKA Luke Skywalker:
Mark Hamill may not have had much in the way of cinematic credits when he was introduced to the world as Luke Skywalker, future Jedi, in “Star Wars,” but he’d sure as heck done his time on the TV circuit, appearing on everything from “The Partridge Family” to “The Streets of San Francisco,” even playing a guy named Doobie Wheeler on “The Texas Wheelers.” But when you’re the star of the greatest space opera of all time ,you’ve got to expect a certain amount of blowback, and Hamill got it in spades. Despite starring in the fondly remembered “Corvette Summer” with Annie Potts and being directed by Samuel Fuller in the critically acclaimed “The Big Red One,” things just weren’t happening for the guy outside of the “Star Wars” universe…well, unless you consider being third-billed to Kristy McNichol and Dennis Quaid in “The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia” to be happening, that is. Post- “Return of the Jedi,” Hamill did a few straight-to-video features before realizing that he might well find more luck off the camera and in the recording booth. Having already worked for Hanna-Barbera in the early ’70s, it was a quick transition for Hamill to return to the world of voiceover acting, and it was a move that paid off in a big way. Whether you’ve known it or not, you’ve heard his dulcet tones providing voices for “The Adventures of Batman & Robin” (The Joker), “Spider-Man” (Hobgoblin), “Avatar: The Last Airbender” (Ozai), and “Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go!” (The Skeleton King), among dozens of others. Good for him, we say. But the truth of the matter remains: when you see his face, Mark Hamill is still Luke Skywalker.
Got the idea? Great! To see the rest of the feature, either click right here or on the big ol’ image below: