Are bike messengers still a thing in the United States? Not as in, do they still exist – of course they still exist! (How else would people get weed delivered to their office in the middle of the day?)

Let me start over: I’m sure there are still courier services – I wonder if their numbers have decreased.

With the exception of Premium Rush, they’ve almost vanished from pop culture. When was the last time the “hip friend” character on a show was a bike courier?

I was just wondering about bike messengers because I was wondering if someone made a Dark Angel reboot, would the main characters still be messengers? I don’t know why I was thinking about this. I’m not now, nor have I ever, watched Dark Angel.

Maybe I started thinking about Dark Angel because it’s indirectly connected to Stonehenge Apocalypse because Supernatural‘s Jensen Ackles was in the 2nd season of Dark Angel and then a few years later landed a lead role on Supernatural, which, in the 4th season, added Misha Collins to the cast as one of the best characters ever and Misha Collins is, of course, the star of Stonehenge Apocalypse, which we’ve just started watching.

Probably not, but it would be cool if that was why.

I can’t believe I’ve never mentioned Stonehenge Apocalypse. Not only have we seen it before, we’re re-watching it. On purpose. For pretty much no reason at all.

It’s got Misha Collins AND disaster movie physics AND adventure movie archaeology AND Stonehenge AND an apocalypse, all wrapped up in one big tortilla of terrible.

Goddamned movie archaeologists. Always doing their archaeology stuff with ancient powerful relics, trying to facilitate the apocalypse or raise an ancient god or get even more super-rich.

Luckily, movie physicists and movie astrophysicists are always standing by to save the day by preventing the power-mad, well-funded movie archaeologists from destroying the world.

For realism, these movies really ought to have a scene in realtime where the movie archaeologists spend 30 minutes arguing over which is the the cheapest happy hour in town and then spend the next 7 hours of storytime drinking beer and arguing about stable isotope analysis and critical theory and heritage management politics and how whoever takes the job managing Stonehenge is out of their ever-loving mind. After they slept off their hangovers, they’d spend the next 6 months of the story grant-writing and and then they’d take a series of moderately paying Cultural Resource Management temp jobs to make some cash during the field season.

Then they’d resume apocalypse facilitation in earnest in the Fall because it’s way more fun than cleaning, labeling, cataloging, and analyzing artifacts in the lab.

Plus, that’s the kind of work you leave for the grad students.

That would be significantly less dramatic and exciting than the “quest to find an ancient Egyptian temple in Maine and turn Stonehenge into an apocalyptic death ray” storyline we just saw in Stonehenge Apocalypse, which was also profoundly lacking in musical numbers, so I’ll leave you with this:


[embedded clip: This Is Spinal Tap]

Incidentally, FWIW, the Cycle Messenger World Championships continue to happen. Plus, everyone carries messenger bags now and wears skinny jeans, so although it seems like bike messengers are maybe less visible, bike messenger culture has it’s tentacles deep in fashion and is here to stay. For a while, anyway. At least until smaller portable devices reduce the amount of crap people carry around and messenger bags get smaller or become irrelevant. That seems unlikely to happen any time soon.

Crapfest has been postponed due to a family emergency so we’re just considering these random acts of viewing to be part of the warmup to The Real Crapfest. Just so you know.


[Embedded Trailer: House of Bones]

Today we embarked on our Two Days of Crap Filmfest (aka Crapfest). Between our Netflix queue and our Tivo, Overlord II, we have an abundance of possibilities because I’ve been hording the worst of the worst for months. I made a spreadsheet to track the themes, key elements, and featured stars.

Eliza Dusku! Barry Williams! Charisma Carpenter! Danny Bonaduce! Misha Collins!

We’ve also got Liam Neeson’s Battleship and, as incentive to keep pushing forward, we’ve got that all-time Bad classic, the Manitou, as the headliner.

Bad (watch immediately, repeatedly).
bad.
Boring Bad (see also: Badish, Badesque).
Not So Good.
Mediocre (neither bad nor good enough to bother with).
Pretty good (might even see it again).
Terminator 2.

We started with Open Graves – a 2009 epic I tivo’d off SyFy on a Saturday morning in February at 9:30 a.m. It opened with a montage of my least favorite things: screaming, bloody torture, fingernail ripping, and snakes. This was on at 9:30 on a Saturday morning? Even I find that inappropriate.

It’s 6:30 on Friday evening and I still find it inappropriate.

There could be spoilers here, but you shouldn’t care because you shouldn’t watch this movie.

Seriously: this movie sucks.

I am telling you this movie is not worth your time.

Think about that.

Since we watched it, I might as well tell you what you’re (not) missing:

After the random spasm of violence that comprised the opening credits, we cut to a bunch of annoying graduate students partying in Spain. After a few minutes of “character development” we’ve already started rooting for a return to torture. Fortunately, Eliza Dushku showed up to give us someone to cheer for.

One of the annoying grad students, played by Mike Vogel, who might possibly be the intended star of this movie, bought an antique boardgame from the Spanish inquisition so hopefully most of these people are about to start dying, violently.

The Spanish Inquisition was famous for it’s board games. Little-known fact.

In related news, this movie has too damned many snakes in it.

To summarize: the idiot grad students play the Spanish Inquisition Boardgame and then start dying violently, each in the manner predicted by the game. The game is the vehicle of revenge for the witch, Mamba, whose skin was used to make the game.

Got that? It was more convoluted than that but actually made sense when Eliza Dushku read it to another character after she looked it up on the internet, presumably on Witchipedia or the Spanish Inquisition Boardgames Wiki. It’s not worth recounting in this post because I don’t wish to make the movie sound clever or interesting.

Then some stuff happened. Then it ended.

At one point, Eliza Dushku’s character said, “Everyone could win, everyone could lose.”

This is also a good summary of what could happen to audiences of this movie.


[Embedded Trailer: Open Graves]

House of Bones, which was the Saturday morning double-feature with Open Graves, had a distinct advantage, in that Open Graves set the bar pretty low for the evening. House of Bones turned out to be a Ken Badish production, which was amusing at first. Later, as the movie teetered on the verge of “boring badness (aka badishness) we wondered if it hadn’t actually been an omen we’d failed to heed.

Corin Nemec (Mansquito, SS Doomtrooper) co-stars alongside Carpenter as TV ghost hunters that enter a reportedly haunted house that may prove to be the death of them.

Oh, dude! The star and the producer of SS Doomtrooper and Mansquito? Why didn’t you say so earlier? (Nemec was also one of the short-lived Campbell cousins on Supernatural).

I loved Mansquito. It’s not as good as Snakehead Terror, but what is?

The plot of House of Bones: Alleged haunted house. Reality TV show crew shooting a show with a psychic in the alleged haunted house. Ta-Da! What could possibly go wrong?

Fortunately, it turned out to be juuuust Bad enough to watch with minimal psychic damage, although it’s no Snakehead Terror or Hellbound. The important thing is that we’ve lived to watch another day.