Aug 8, 2015

Flinging popcorn at Corman's Fantastic Four.

The Roger Corman Fantastic 4... Must remember it's a No Budget Ashcan copy... But seeing that Tankt4stic is on theaters, I need to do a play by play and I'd rather watch the Roger Corman take than the one with Jessica Alba... Mostly because I cannot see that movie knowing that Johnny Storm is now Captain America and I'd spend 10 minutes rambling about Doom being a discount Norman Osborn played by that dude from Charmed...

So, the Corman Fantastic Four start off Ripping Off a Doctor Who intro...

Stills of faraway planets tinted blue because Fantastic 4 and Cosmic uh stuff!
Ooh Solar flares and color!! I have to say, the Music has a bit of an "Epic Adventure" vibe to it. which suits the F4 being Explorers above everything else.

The movie starts with a college professor that seems very familiar... Yes, it's Commandant Lazard. I was thinking of Henry Warnimont! So, the Professor is having a bit of an issue remembering a number related to the Speed of Light, but Reed Richards gives him the answer because he's a NERD! Next to him is the Jock, Ben Grimm!

Reed seems to be passing off notes to a person in the back. The notes seem to have some sort of schematics and Reed made a correction to the calculations... (I'm guessing the person behind Reed is no one other than DOOM!!) The professor is prattling on about a cosmic event nearing Earth.

It WAS Victor Von Doom! and Reed is pointing out Victor's Mistake. After Reed convinces Victor about making a test run, the camera focuses on 2 shifty individuals playing chess like checkers?

Mrs. Storm's boarding house and I hear Sue yelling for Johnny... Sue is young and Johnny is younger!? You mean to tell me that this movie is being respectful to the ages of the F4? Oh look, Young Sue has a crush on Reed!

Ominous music when Reed and Doom enter to check the Machine... It kinda looks like a Spydor had sex with a Cosmic Key. (Sorry for the MOTU reference) Reed still points out Doom's mistake, but Doom pins the blame on Reed. (Cause Doom is never wrong) Oh look! No time for a Test Run, this is it!!

Science is happening. Ben is trying to get laid and people are watching the event as Reed and Doom try to harness the power. The effects are a bit corny, but no budget. Something is going wrong and Doom throws a tantrum. Ben is coming to the rescue as everything goes to hell! Doom is hit by a blast that burns his face. Ben saves him as Reed is helpless on the floor.
Ben gets treated for his injuries. Doom seems to be dead. (We know he's alive, cause Doom)
Wait! That Doctor looked like one of the two shifty guys we saw earlier!!

I must point out that THIS is better than the whole "Doom is on the trip with the 4 and gets Metal powers with them" crap that the Fox movies have tried and failed.

Oh the Henchmen are Latverians... I see! Ten years later! Reed works at the Baxter Building and is still pals with Ben Grimm who will pilot his ship. Reed and Ben basically pick up the Storms to take them to space... No forced Susan working for Doom or Johnny hitching a ride while drunk here... Ben has a point about the Storm Siblings knowing a lot about this project since Reed used to live with them. Also it's related to the event 10 years ago that Reed ditched them to be with DOOM!!
Also, I think Reed has gotten Stretchy powers before the cosmic rays because his jaw hit the floor so hard when he saw grown up Susan... (I'd make a joke about his other Mr. Fantastic, but I'm actually enjoying the movie.) Foreshadowing and title shout-out!

Doom is alive and is wearing the True Doom Armor!? what Sorcery is this!? Is that Mole Man!? Holy crap! A NON-DOOM Villain!? Ben Bumped into Alicia Masters? I think Benji's got a crush...

I see, Reed is trying to recreate the Experiment he was working with Doom and the Diamond thing is going to help. "Mole man" wants the diamond for reasons and Doom obviously wants REVENGE!! because RICHARRRRRRRRDS!! and all that.

We cut to Alicia who is making a Ben? out of Clay as the Mole Man stalks her... I'm calling him Mole Man because he's pretty much Mole Man, but with a mild Jewelry fetish.

Shadowy glimpses of Doom are sexy as hell! Mole Man is doing a Laser Shuffle and Doom's men have noticed the intruder. Doom is pleased with the fact that Mole Man swapped the real diamond for a fake. Now they can die in space *evil laugh*

Outer Space Adventure... Check!
Getting hit by Cosmic Rays... Check!
The angellic choir and Whovian inspired imagery is telling us that the change is happening!

And holy crap! Doom's timing is impeccable as the ship explodes in space... That evil laugh is epic! Shame that there is no youtube clip about it.

The 4 crashlanded on an island and Ben is the first survivor. Reed is survivor number 2. Johnny is Number 3 and Flame Sneezes for Johnny! (Low budget, not too many "flame on!" uses.) Where is Sue? is invisible and is now ghostlike... Reed is stretchy... What the heck is going on!? (cosmic rays folks!) They're cold, scared and clueless. Also, Johnny's hand's on fire!

Dude! This Doom is hamming it up to the max! I FREAKING LOVE HIM!! THIS IS DOOM! The over the top reactions remind me of Raúl Juliá as Bison and Comic Book Doom. Seriously, whoever plays Doom needs to revel every second of it by hamming it up to Raúl Juliá Bison levels.

Alicia is still sculpting Ben. A "delivery person" brings headcasts of the Four.

Mole Man has an army of Hobos? (Low budget... Must remember the Low Budget.) whom are asked to kidnap Alicia... Oh noes! She discovered that Ben "is dead". Um, OK here's the thing. Alicia is blind but I'm sure her sense of smell must be slightly better to compensate the lack of vision... right? and Army of Hobos is not exactly the most pleasant thing to smell... Finally something to nitpick! So, Alicia gets kidnapped by the hobos.

The Army? Finds the Fantastic Four... and Ben is the Everlovin' blue eyed Thing! Looks very Comic book accurate for a low budget movie...

We get a bunch of awkward scenes with a Doctor and each of the 4... Holy crap they're in Latveria!? Castle Doom! SEE! This is what we need as a F4 Movie but with a ginormous budget!! Also, Doctor Doom giving the other Doctor a massage is a weird and hilarious thing. Now he wants to meet Mole Man... They call him the Jeweler, but it's totally Mole Man with a lesser budget.

The Latverian thugs try to arrange a meeting with the Mole Man, but do not notice the Hobo Army... Seriously! Don't they SMELL THEM!

The 4 Figure out something is messed up!

Doom wants to buy the diamond, but Mole Man ain't selling... Ugh! Latverian goons are dumber than bricks! (and possibly dead men when Doom hears the bad news!) Doom is going personally meeting Mole Man...

The 3 out of 4 sneak around (violence edited out) while Ben holds the fort down. Alarms rang and ben busts out to locate the 4. The rest of the 4 find some kind of atomic splitter AND DOOM! who gives them an Ultimatum. An army of Doom-themed Soldiers? (I wish we had bigger budget) It's Clobberin time!! Ben fights the Doom Troops and Johnny is plasma cutting a wall? Sue and Reed got some cool moments too! (Like tripping foes with the stretchy leg... Very cartoony and Sue ducking while invisible to avoid bullets!) Ben is tired and punches a hole in the wall... Doom is disappoint. You never disappoint DOOM!

Back in New York: Reed is trying to find a cure for Ben. He figures out the "Reason" behind each of the 4's powers: Sue's Shyness, Johnny's Hotheadedness, Reed Stretches himself too thin by trying to solve everything... and Ben? He's Tough... The Powers are their weaknesses made into strengths..."Holy Freud Batman!" Er... We get a moment of Ben Angst and people are afraid of is appearance.

Sue creates the F4 Suits and they're comic book accurate! Though the 4 is a bit too big...

Ben joins the Hobo Stank Army? Alicia doesn't want to marry Mole Man. Now Mole Man offers everything to Ben.

Oh Celestia! Doom is awesome!

Now they figure out that Doom is Victor Von Doom! Speaking of Doom!! He makes a grandiose entrance on Hoboville, because DOOM!! He scares off the Hobos with his Mauser... Did I mention how much I LOVE This DOOM!? Mole Man threatens Doom with killing Alicia, but Doom doesn't care about Alicia... Mr. Culp, I guess you had a lot of fun doing this role! Now Ben comes to the rescue! Now Doom kidnaps Alicia and threatens Ben... It's Clobbering time! but Ben loses his rocky form. Doom takes the diamond and Alicia, while touching her face awkwardly, because DOOM!! Ben is running around when he does the Thing Ring Do YOUR THING!!

At the Baxter Building the rest of the 4 Doom taunts them! A DOOMSDAY DEVICE and 12 hours to surrender to DOOM!! Or else NYC is a goner. I love this Doom! and Ben Returns.

Sue FINALLY tells Reed that she loves him... Reed tells Sue that he loves her too! D'awww!

dude, the Fantasticar makes it to the movie... It's not the Traditional Soapbox, but it's there! They head to Latveria... which seems to be on Mordor. so they sneak in to the Castle...
Roll the Ackbar clip!

DOOM is back! with a monologue! I freaking Love Doom!!!
 Dude! This Doom is a bastard. He's going to drain Ben of his powers and then have him watch Doom's men kill Alicia as Ben is powerless to stop them!

The 4 are being drained as Doom taunts them, but Reed's foot saves the day by knocking the power drainer... It's Clobbering time At Last! and Flame On! Non-Bot Doombots are being beaten left and right. Even Reed fights! Sue makes an invisible field to fight... Johnny goes full Torch... (shame that this movie had such little budget)

Ben rescues Alicia. She likey!

Reed vs Doom! With Bitch Claws!! Reed lays the smackdown on Doom and knocks him over the castle's ledge. Doom is hanging on dear life.
Doom plays the friendship card and taunts Reed as he falls to his death... TMNT3 style!

Johnny intercepts the laser and saves the day!

Reed and Sue get married. The End!

I freaking LOVE This movie's take on Doctor Doom!

Doom is smart, cunning, a master planner, but he is also a powerful world leader with a robotic army under his control.He can do WHATEVER HE WANTS, WHENEVER HE WANTS. That attitude of being virtually unstoppable, paired up with a superiority complex, but not insane... DOOM IS NOT INSANE!!! He is purely EVIL and he does what he does because he KNOWS BEST, BECAUSE HE IS DOOM! (Any hiccups in characterization can be covered up by a Doombot being used instead of DOOM!! From an acting perspective, Doom is a fun character to play and experiment with, but it needs a director who understands the character and reign in the actor if needed. (One can get carried away when dealing with such a delicious character as Doom)

Now, it's not a BAD movie... a little corny, but this is the early 1990s where we were beginning to
adjust to comic book movies not being absolute camp... The effects were OK-ish for a LOW Budget Ashcan Copy to retain rights, but the movie is better than the 2005 Fantastic Four movie... (and to most poor souls who wasted money on the 2015 version, the consensus is that THIS is the BEST F4 Movie.)

Now some people say that bringing the Fantastic Four is impossible. It's not. Only that Fox has no idea how to do it. They tone down Doom to the point that he needs Super Powers in order to be relevant. He doesn't. That's the Marvel of Doom. He made a mistake and he overreacted to it while blaming Reed for it. He became a Mage (something that Richards cannot do) and he built an armored suit that rivals Ironman. Then there's the family dynamic. The Fantastic 4 work BECAUSE the characters have known each other for quite some time before the Event. The Corman Movie does a better way to show this than the 2005 movie did.
Get the Chemistry with the 4 to work and get Doom Right and you have a strong foundation to a good Fantastic Four movie. (It also helps being respectful to the source Material)

There is more respect and reverence to the Source Material in this Movie than the 2015 movie.

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