VIDEO: Mama (2013)

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Count Jackula and Horror Guru get an unexpected visitor while reviewing Mama, starring Jessica Chastain, and produced by Guillermo del Toro.

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  • FullofQuestions1

    Must…see… movie! I know that sounds nutty, but even if it sucks, I’ve gotten way too excited about it to avoid viewing it.

    Yeah, I know, I’ll probably hate it, but I’m willing to risk that. Will I be okay if I just turn my brain off? And when you say younger demographic, do I count?

    Anyway, bad decision making aside, great work! Sofie’s cameo was brilliant. I laughed quite a lot. :)

    • Jack Shen

      As we both said, Mama is not “bad.” But if you’ve seen a lot of horror movies, you can see how it could have been a masterpiece, and that made us sad. As far as turning your brain off, it’s not that kind of flick, you’ll want to watch it for what it does well. As far as age, yeah you might actaulyl be in the right age group. Check it out, I’m interested in what you’ll think.

  • I just love how much you guys put into the production of this video! It’s awesome! The skits are funny and the review is entertaining, thought-provoking and intelligent. Also…OMG…I don’t know why, but I laughed out loud at “Jakob T. Jackula” (don’t ask why I decided to spell it with a K =P).

    • Jack Shen

      Thanks Waffle! This episode had a lot of care put into it so I’m glad someone noticed. :)

      • MephLord

        This episode is so weird…and a Del Toro movie that has studio interference, I’ve never imagined that happening before…

        If Guillermo Del Toro were given free license on a super hero movie, imagine how disturbing that would be. Scarlet Witch, Raven, He-Man and Namor are four characters I think he could breathe life into with cinematography alone.

        • A Del Toro movie with studio interference? Look no further than Mimic, my friend.

          • Jack Shen

            Yeah pretty much. There is a relationship between how good a Guillermo del Toro film is and how much studio interference there isn’t.

        • Sofie Liv

          Well.. he did Hell-boy 2 largely one his own, and well.. that’s a very unqiue Superhero movie. In fact it’s more like a dark fantasi movie than it is a superhero movie, he even brought in all of the fairy-tale themes he is so happy about.

          And quite frankly.. I love it!

  • Muthsarah

    Cool. 80’s Dan: The Streets of San Francisco. Wrong decade, but who cares?

    Apologies if this post lacks substance, but I’m mostly just trying to see if I can still post here. The site has been preventing me from doing so lately.

    P.S. Jackie Boy, LOVED your two-sided take on the review. I’m a total horror neophyte, but I could still taste the elitism…and I liked it. I gotta catch up on the Olde Tyme Horror. I feel I’m missin’ some’um good.

    • Jack Shen

      Sometimes it’s important to recognize that what’s predictable and tired for you, won’t be that way for people that haven’t had the chance to gain the same level of experience. Genre in particular is like that and I don’t want to discourage people from things they might enjoy just because it didn’t work for me.

      BTW I appreciate the 80’s Dan comparison, I love those videos.

  • danbreunig

    You two just made both my day and my favorite Friday Night Fright Flick.

    Awesome work with the 80s sitcom fodder, as well as voicing my own opinion about focus groups for me!

    Hm, Splued…would I find that in sodas or pharmacy?

    Really though, this is my favorite of your reviews thus far. You definitely have the gift of balance in both the sketch and actual critique parts. When you love the work you do, it sure shows. You guys also have that comedy duo dynamic that’s more than just “straight guy and clever, silly guy”–you’re actually bouncing characters off each other in their own way (my kinda duo comedy). Plus Jackula should striptease more often~~~~

    • Jack Shen

      Haha, yeah I prefer not to use the straight man/ funny guy dynamic because that doesn’t play to our strengths. It’s kind of like how neither Daffy Duck or Bugs Bunny is the straight man. There it’s more about in control and out of control.

  • Sofie Liv

    Okay I promise! Next time you require a singing cameo i’ll get better recording eqiupment! that was terrible on my part.

    And beside that.. have I ever told how jalous I am of you guys? You get to be a genuine duo, playing off each other, working together, and the product just ends up being so much better because of it!
    This is ones again, great! just a great video with a great sketch and a nice review. And ones again, you just are genuinely funny.

    God I hate you guys, I wish I could do that.

    • Jack Shen

      Your take of the SPLUD! theme was great. You just seemed so genuinely excited for SPLUD! when you sang it. And thanks for the compliments :)

      • Sofie Liv

        I didn’t talk about my delivery, cause I am always great as you very well know…
        Any-way, I was talking about my recordings equipment, I shall get better recording equipment for future song recordings! YARGH!

        And I honestly mean it, you have such a great dynamic going on, it’s spiteful to watch for some-one like me whom would like nothing better than to have a work-partner -_-;

      • Thomas Stockel

        I want my Splud!

    • Sofie, regardless of your equipment, your take on the SPLUD joke made my week. I laughed my arse off. Well done, m’lady! =)

  • $36060516

    Great video. On the critical portion, though, it didn’t make sense to me that Jacula used as signs of studio interference “poor jump scares,” “comically bad CGI,” and the title monster’s design being “tired” and “overused.” Seems like you’re going out of your way to let the filmmakers off the hook and leave them blameless for their own work. Unless there’s some evidence that the film’s script wouldn’t have included poor jump scares, that the CGI studio would have done better work, and that the monster’s portrayal in the script, direction, and creature design would have been original instead of tired and cliche, it doesn’t seem reasonable to claim it’s due to studio interference given that this is the only movie that the writer/director has ever made. You seem to credit the film to Guillermo Del Toro and blame the studio because this isn’t as good as “Pan’s Labyrinth,” but this wasn’t written or directed by Del Toro, it was written and directed by Andrés Muschietti. I’ve seen Del Toro’s name as executive producer on a lot of mediocre looking horror stuff that got mixed to poor reviews, so studio interference isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. He seems to like to make money by lending his name to vaguely spooky stuff that isn’t up to the level of his own work. (Or, more charitably, he’s trying to help less experienced young filmmakers he thinks have potential break into the business by lending his name.)

    • Jack Shen

      Like we said in the video, the problems with the film COULD be all the director’s fault. However, every shortcoming the movie has is a problem that has historically developed as a result of focus grouping and trying to hit every audience demographic.

      As far as other del Toro productions, I’ve seen good and mediocre, but all the mediocre ones have something in common: they are all made for American audiences. As for his goals as an executive producer, yeah, he’s pretty much trying to help less experienced filmmakers.

      • $36060516

        That seems like guesswork which doesn’t take into account the fact that Del Toro is making the rounds doing interviews that praise the film in glowing terms. Here are quotes from one interview (with ScreenCrave) where he says he arranged a deal with the studio where he had final cut and the studio didn’t interfere:

        DEL TORO: “…we made a movie that I’m really proud of.”

        INTERVIEWER: “How did you convince the studio to go along with the ending?”

        DEL TORO: “For that ending, I made sure I had final cut. We financed the movie in a way that we had autonomy in the decisions that we could preserve the ending. And after all of those preparations, we sent it to the studio, and the studio went, ‘We love it!’ We were shocked. In my experience, that normally doesn’t happen. We had a tone shift that I’ve done before, in Pan’s Labyrinth, we did it on The Orphanage, where we start as a horror story and end up on a very moving note. It’s very sublime at the end. I was also prepared for that being something the studio was up against. But they supported it it. I wish I could tell you, I went in a room and slammed my hand and punched the wall, but it was really super easy.”

        So Del Toro has put his name on this film to get people to come watch it, and is actively making a promotional tour where he says not only that he’s proud of the film but that he was careful to finance it in a way where he had control, and that he was involved in all the decisions every step of the way, yet you’re assuming he’s lying in order to not appear unprofessional by talking crap about the studio that ruined his genius vision for the movie? If that’s the case he still has to take responsibility for luring his fans to come see a movie that he is fully endorsing and claiming creative control over. But it seems more likely that he simply made a movie you don’t like and you would rather not accept that he fucked up because Del Toro is so likeable and popular with his fans.

        Anyhoo, nice use of Goblin music in your video which I entirely enjoyed, just disagreed with this deferral of responsibility you chose to go with in assigning blame for the film. Del Toro used his name to get people to come to this and he is saying he had control over it so it seems unlikely that anonymous evil creativity-squelching studio bean counters are the ones to blame.

        • Guest

          We didn’t blame anyone, we said multiple times in the video that it’s merely how the film felt.

          • $36060516

            If I was a psychologist I guess I’d say that as filmmakers yourselves maybe you’re projecting your own fears of studio interference onto the film! (Edited to add winky emoticon to clarify I’m jokin’ around.) ;-)

          • Joking aside, you might be onto something there. =P

        • Jack Shen

          Can you send a link to that interview?

  • The_Stig

    Ah yes, always jacked for FNFF!

    • Bad ass! Glad you dig us! =)

      • The_Stig

        Well, the theme is pretty badass. Always puts me in the mood to kill Sarah Connor.

    • Jack Shen

      Thanks Stig!

  • Damn it Jack and Josh, this is the first time in years that I laughed along with a laugh track…I had a record guys…A RECORD.

    Hilarious stuff as always, as for the movie…yeah it does sound mediocre…I just want to point out Guillermo produced it, he didn’t direct it nor wrote it, just sayin’ <__<

    • Muhahahaha!

      • The_Stig

        Real reviewers are never afraid to flash buttcrack. Never forget that. Ever.

    • Jack Shen

      No problem Jerry, I have a love of the del Toro as well.