HAMMY’S TOP 10…WWE SUMMERSLAM MATCHES!

WrestleMania 33 is upon us! Yes, the most unanticipated WrestleMania since…last year will be held tonight. I’m finding it hard to care about it, but I’ll watch it anyway! However, I’ve been thinking about doing a regular “Top 10 Things List.” And what better time than now to count down my Top 10 WrestleMania matches? Here they are:

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Review: WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches To See Before You Die: #9 John Cena vs. CM Punk (WWE Championship, WWE Money in the Bank 2011)

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(Here’s the link for the match on the WWE Network: http://network.wwe.com/video/v31359911/?contentId=&contextType=wwe-show&contextId=money_in_the_bank )

John Cena vs CM Punk from Money in the Bank 2011 fully deserves to be in the top 10 of the 100 Best Matches…List. It has all the components of a great match: an incredible build, a blistering crowd, an unbelievable match and John Cena. Of course, I jest about the latter. But I can’t deny he’s been in some great matches. This is probably his best (and Punk’s WWE best). Cena has always tried to outdo his “indie” opponents, and this trend started with CM Punk in this match. We’ve seen them fight before on the Best 100 Matches…List, at #62 (click here for my review), but that was an exchange of big moves. This match is a lesson in psychology, pacing, storytelling and high states. Continue reading

Review: WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches To See Before You Die: #10 Bret Hart vs. Shawn Michaels (WWE Title, 60 Minute Iron Man Match. WWE Wrestlemania XII)

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(Here’s the link for the match on the WWE Network: http://network.wwe.com/video/v31348419?contextType=wwe-show&contextId=wrestlemania&contentId=67696930&watchlistAltButtonContext=series )

Oh goodness, we’re entering the Top 10! My journey through the WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches To Watch Before You Die has taken me over two years…but I’m nearly there!

I’ve mentioned before during my reviews of the 100 Best Matches…List that the original version of a gimmick match is, more often than not, the best version of it. Hell in a Cell, Elimination Chamber, Ladder match…all the originals are superior to what came after them. Not only that, but they usually involve Shawn Michaels as well. However, Shawn Michaels failed to make the inaugural 60 Minute Iron Man Match better than what succeeded it. The Iron Man match between Brock Lesnar and Kurt Angle, placed at #52, is far better than this one (click here for my review). It’s a match of two halves. The first half is as dull as waiting for a bus. The second half is action-packed, but the wait was so long for the action that it’s hard to feel excited for it. Continue reading

HAMMY’S TOP 10…FILMS OF 1987

Hey, did you realise it’s been thirty years since 1987? I was but a little boy back then, in the heady days of Thatcher’s reign over Britain and the closing years of the Cold War. While I was watching Thomas The Tank Engine (and being scared out of my wits by the Ghost Train episode!), 1987 was being graced with great films. Of course, as I grew up, I became acquainted with the films of 1987 (not all of them, however. I still haven’t seen The Princess Bride!). Here are my Top 10 Films of 1987! Continue reading

Review: WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches To See Before You Die: #11 Ric Flair vs. Ricky Steamboat (NWA World Title, NWA Chi-Town Rumble)

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(Here’s the link for the match on the WWE Network: http://network.wwe.com/video/v31572841/?contentId=&contextType=wwe-show&contextId=chi-town_rumble )

We saw the concluding bout of Ric Flair and Ricky Steamboat’s “Holy Trinity” of matches at #17 (click here for my review). We all are familiar with a trilogy: the first part is very good, showing lots of promise. The middle part is spectacular, the best of the trilogy. As for the final part: more often than not, it’s a disappointment in relation to the second part. Think of the great film trilogies: most end with a whimper, not a bang. However, #17 was something rather special. If that was the concluding part of the trilogy, the other two would have to be mind-blowing. Flair and Steamboat left little on the table in their first bout, but I still preferred #17… Continue reading

Review: WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches To See Before You Die: #12 The Rock vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin (WWE Title, No Disqualification. WWE Wrestlemania X-7)

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(Here’s the link for the match on the WWE Network: http://network.wwe.com/video/v31599441?contextType=wwe-show&contextId=wrestlemania&contentId=69745716&watchlistAltButtonContext=series )

Is this the best WrestleMania main event ever? The 100 Best Matches…List would have you believe it’s Bret Hart vs Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania XII in an Iron Man match (placed at #10). I’m here to tell you that the Iron Man match is a borefest (if I remember correctly). The Rock vs Stone Cold Steve Austin at WrestleMania X-7 is surely the best ‘Mania main event ever at the top of one of the best Manias ever. Austin vs The Rock had everything, from a good build, a clash of two top stars, drama, blood and a delicious twist. It represented everything great about the Attitude Era whilst signalling the end of said era. Continue reading

Review: Starship Troopers (1997) (B-Movie Trash, or Inspired Satire?)

“This year we explored the failure of democracy”

Starship Troopers is twenty years old this year! I mean the film, not the book. Paul Verhoeven’s adaptation of Robert Heinlein’s classic science fiction novel was greeted with critical disdain upon its release. Those fond of Heinlein’s novel disliked his interpretation of the text (and lack of power suits). Film critics disliked the fascistic overtones, bland acting, and simple plot. However, both parties misunderstood Verhoeven’s intentions behind directing Starship Troopers. He didn’t want to bow down before a science fiction classic. He wanted to be subversive and controversial. He wanted to turn the novel on its head and lace it with his own brand of brutal satire. In that respect, it was a success. Starship Troopers isn’t a classic science fiction film, but it’s pretty darn close. Continue reading

HAMMY’S TOP 10…GAMECUBE GAMES

The GameCube celebrated its fifteen anniversary last year. However, it was released on May 3rd 2002 over here in Europe, so technically it’s fifteen years old this year as well. I was an unabashed Nintendo fan back in the day. I had all of their consoles (well, apart from the Virtual Console). They could do no wrong in my eyes. When the Gamecube was announced, I wasn’t too fussed on the name, but that didn’t matter. It was a new console from Nintendo! I remember playing Luigi’s Mansion for the first time. Who needed Mario when you had his brother being a Ghostbuster? Luigi’s Mansion was the tip of the iceberg when it came to great games for the Gamecube. And here are my Top 10 Games for the Gamecube!

The Gamecube was lost in the shuffle, but had plenty of great games!

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Review: Dark Star (1974) (Carpenter’s Supernova!)

Someday this tape will be played and then they’ll feel sorry.

I’ve been having something of a John Carpenter binge lately, watching both Assault on Precinct 13 and The Fog (both of which I’ve never watched before!) I decided to take a look at Carpenter’s first film, Dark Star. Oddly, I was introduced to Dark Star during my first year of philosophy at university. The lecturer used to show us clips of science fiction films to explain certain philosophical concepts. He showed us the conclusion of Dark Star, where a man and a sentient bomb are talking about the meaning of life. It was only years later that I watched the whole film. While a rough piece of work, it’s still a great science fiction comedy. Continue reading

Review: WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches To See Before You Die: #13 The Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels (No Disqualification, Streak vs. Career, WWE Wrestlemania XXVI)

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(Here’s the link for the match on the WWE Network: http://network.wwe.com/video/v31294203?contextType=wwe-show&contextId=wrestlemania&contentId=66743884&watchlistAltButtonContext=series )

Sequels, who’d have them? Of course, there’s Terminator 2, Aliens, Godfather II…but those are the chosen few. There’s a great chance of disappointment when you watch a sequel, especially if the predecessor was something special. Some may call the first WrestleMania match between The Undertaker and Shawn Michaels as the greatest match ever (I’m one of those people. And the 100 Best Matches…List agrees with me. It’s #1!). How could they possibly follow it up? At WrestleMania XXVI, the rematch was set: The Streak vs Career, Undertaker vs Shawn Michaels… Continue reading