The Direct to Video Connoisseur

I'm a huge fan of action, horror, sci-fi, and comedy, especially of the Direct to Video variety. In this blog I review some of my favorites and not so favorites, and encourage people to comment and add to the discussion. If you click on an image, it will take you to that post's image page, which includes many more pics from the film and other goodies I couldn't fit in the actual review. For announcements and updates, don't forget to Follow us on Twitter and Like our Facebook page. If you're the director, producer, distributor, etc. of a low-budget feature length film and you'd like to send me a copy to review, you can contact me at dtvconnoisseur[at]yahoo.com. I'd love to check out what you got.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Titanic II (2010)

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When I first heard about this one, I had to check it out. It was from The Asylum, so I knew it could be a real stinker, and they were more likely than not going to disappoint me, but the idea of Titanic II was just too irresistible to pass up.

Titanic II takes place 100 years after the ill-fated part I set sail. Shane Van Dyke plays a rich boy, filled to the gills with enough hubris to sink a tanker. The senator from X-Men, Bruce Davison, is some kind of scientist who, with a hot female scientist, realize that a huge tidal wave set off from a huge iceberg falling into the arctic due to Global Warming is aiming straight for the ship, and his daughter is a hopelessly inappropriately dressed medic working on the maiden voyage. Well, hubris, big ships, and tidal waves are a recipe for disaster-- plus, we wouldn't have a movie without it-- and it's up to Davison to mitigate the damage.

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This one worked. I know, it's crazy, but The Asylum finally got it right, I mean really got it right. This was a perfect send-up of low-budget disaster and sci-fi movies of the 50s. Just replace nuclear disaster with Global Warming, and it fits. While everything was tongue-in-cheek, it was done without the obvious wink-wink nudge-nudge that ruins it for us. They weren't afraid of us not getting the joke, weren't afraid of us thinking they were serious about this, and because of that, it was perfect. The Asylum, making it work.

Bruce Davison really holds up his end of the bargain here. Just like Bruce Boxleitner in Transmorphers: Fall of Man, he played it straight, and he played it well. If you watch the gag reel that comes with it, you see how difficult that was for him. A lot of greenscreens, a lot of silly dialog, and if he overdoes it, acts like he's in on the joke, as opposed to acting like he wasn't, which was his job, again, he ruins the whole thing. Here's to you Bruce Davison, for what's it's worth, I think your character got a bum deal in X-Men.

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This is directed by Transmorphers: Fall of Man star Shane Van Dyke. I didn't know this, but his dad, Barry Van Dyke, Dick Van Dyke's son, was the dude who played his son on Diagnosis Murder. Not only that, but Shane Van Dyke appeared on a bunch of episodes too. My mom loves that show. I looked on imdb, and it turns out he actually directed his dad and Greg Evigan in another Asylum flick, 6 Guns. We'll have to see what that's about. I should point out too that Van Dyke wrote Titanic II as well. A great job all around here. Maybe he was all The Asylum needed to make them work. Sorry C. Thomas Howell...

I brought up in the synopsis the inappropriately dressed medics on the ship. Both women, in tight, half-unbuttoned shirts, short skirts, and heels. Perfect for responding to any medical emergency. And all of this was carried off without a hint of irony, which made it fit with everything else that was going on. Not to mention they were both very hot, and there's no way we would've known that had they been dressed in more practical pants and shirts with safety shoes on. Exactly, if we want realism, we'll watch TLC. When we watch The Asylum, we want our medics looking sexy.

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The ship was almost entirely done in CGIs. The ocean was almost entirely done in CGIs. The arctic was almost completely done in CGIs. Did it look like crap? Absolutely. Was it awesome? Absolutely. It just worked in that 1950s Attack of the Giant Gila Monster kind of way, and I think that, though that's often the approach when The Asylum goes the CGI route in a movie like this, it usually comes off as a bad send-up that's lazily paying homage, as opposed to apart of a whole concept in the spirit of the 1950s low-budget cheesefest. Shane Van Dyke found a way to make it work, so kudos to him.

If you're into the whole bad Sci-Fi (SyFy?) Pictures Original thing, this is as good as it gets. Strangely enough, it's the only one out of Shane Van Dyke's three films he's directed that's not available on Watch Instantly. It is on DVD though, so I'd check it out. It's a fun time, especially in a group.

For more info: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1640571/

10 comments:

  1. Great to see you back mate. This movie looks a blast, I've been following it's progress for a while and can't wait for a release out here. Only the Asylum would attempt something like this.

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  2. Yeah, it's definitely a blast. And thanks man, it's great to be back.

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  3. Good to have you back man! Anyways did you see Expendables(or Machete for that matter) yet? If so what are your thoughts on it?

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  4. Awesome that you're back! Can't wait to see what you have coming up!

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  5. I'll review those two when they come out on DVD. I have a couple films on the shelf I might do, but I should probably see what you've been up to, Ty, for some ideas.

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  6. Thanks for the nice comment. Also we just posted L.A. Bounty with a crazy performance by Wings Hauser!

    Pretty fun flick!

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  7. this review is right on. although for sheer asylum-ness, mega piranha is still my favorite.

    spoiler

    http://wp.me/pWWAI-7P

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  8. I won't read your Mega Pirhana review, due to the spoilers, but it is available on Watch Instantly, so I'll check it out. Thanks for the pointer.

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  9. I can not believe there is a Titanic 2 and this is the first I'm hearing about it

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  10. Oh, there's a Titanic II all right. It's actually my most popular post by page-views all time.

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