Category: Film Reviews
Director: John Poliquin
Writers: The Vicious Brothers
The directors of “Grave Encounters” return with their highly anticipated sequel, ”Grave Encounters 2”. There certainly was a buzz about the first film in the series which was actually the Vicious Brothers directorial debut and was written by them. They also wrote the second but stepped down from the director’s chair for John Poliquin whose career started in music videos and commercials.
The premise of Grave Encounters 2 surrounds a film student named Alex Wright and his crew as they work on their thesis, a torture porn horror movie. Alex however, receives a message from an online user named DeathAwaits666 and begins to receive information leading him to believe that maybe the “Grave Encounters” movie may not have been fiction.
2nd In “Grave Encounters” Series Full Of Haunts
Weeks go by and Alex has become obsessed after he … Read More »
In 2012, anthology film “V/H/S” captured the interest of the horror community. Though met with mixed reviews, the movie’s concept—six short segments, all shot in the increasingly-popular “found footage” style and presented within the narrative as tapes from a mysterious snuff film collection—was fresh enough to garner major attention, and, of course, spawn a sequel.
2013′s “V/H/S 2” (formerly titled the more-clever “S-V/H/S”), much like the first installment, is a mixed bag. While this sequel improves on many of the first’s problem areas, it also makes some new mistakes and manages to repeat old ones.
This time around, there are only five segments (including the wrap-around framing story). While the pace of the film is considerably improved compared to its predecessor, one less segment also means a little less variety.
V/H/S 2 Improves on V/H/S Problems but Makes New Mistakes
The framing narrative, “Tape … Read More »
Directed by Marcel Sarmiento and Gadi Harel
Two degenerate teens discover a nameless, zombie-dead-girl. One teen decides to chill with it and play house. The other teen considers having sex with the dead girl, but then decides he is going to focus on another girl. One that is alive.
Deadgirl is a film about people who have sex with a dead girl. You can watch the situation corrupt JT (I know where there is this dead girl that I can bang!), and you can watch this guy named Rickie (Shiloh Fernandez) pursue his pie-in-the-sky love while he waits most of the movie before he decides to save the day for dead girl.
Necrophilia, Misogyny and Zombies – Deadgirl Pushes Boundaries
JT doesn’t want to leave his “Precious Deadgirl,” and then discovers that deadgirl can bite and pass the zombie-condition. Even though he fails to … Read More »
Directed by: Eric Walters
In November 1974, Ronald DeFeo went floor by floor in his parent’s four-story Amityville home, shooting and killing all six of his family members. DeFeo claimed spirits told him to do it. A year later, George and Kathy Lutz moved their three children, Daniel, Christopher, and Melissa into the house. After only 28 days, the Lutz family fled the in fear leaving all of their personal possessions behind. They claimed that they were forced to leave after all the haunting experiences that occurred in their short stay at 112 Ocean Avenue.
Over the years to follow the Lutz’ story became an international phenomenon. They were on the cover of “Home Journal” and they were on every news and radio program. They also made national television appearances on talk shows. The story became the subject of a best-selling novel … Read More »
Directed by David Schmoeller
This classic straight to DVD thriller centers on an ancient Egyptian formula with the ability to create/give life discovered by Andre Toulon, a puppeteer. He is a gentle man, using the power to give his puppets life. When the Nazis learn of this secret, however, they are determined to take it from him and use it for their own means. In a last-ditch effort to protect his secret, and the puppets he loves, Toulon takes his life before the Nazis get to him.
50 years later, in 1989, the secret was found by a despicable man named Neil Gallagher. Through the powers of the mind, he reaches out to four psychic colleagues. The four are compelled to go to him, to the same hotel where Andre Toulon took his life all those years ago. Upon arriving the four … Read More »
With all the zombie movies that’ve been bloating up the horror genre, you’d think that fans across the globe would’ve become tired of our slinking, undead friends; but then you’d be thinking wrong. Zombies have come back with full force in the media, and with good reason. They’re no longer the blundering, painfully slow Romero-types of old. They’ve evolved into insatiable beasts, quick with animal instincts that drive them to a single purpose: tear flesh from limb, infecting as many as possible. With this new adaptation to a beloved staple in the horror universe zombies have been reborn, and World War Z does an excellent job of bringing this new, fledgling class of the undead to the big screen.
Based on the book of the same name written by Max Brooks, World War Z is just shy of two hours of … Read More »
Directed by: James Wan
Imagine sitting in a theater, completely crowed, and filled with young adults and teens. Now imagine sitting in that exact theater at a midnight premiere of “The Conjuring.” The energy filled the room as the lights turned down. Everyone was excited and fearful at the same time to finally view the film that was widely publicized as one of the scariest movies in history.
The film opens on an old rag doll named Annabelle. This aspect of the story introduces the Warrens. The story is based on the true events and the lives of Ed and Lorraine Warren, famed demonologists who have investigated some of the most famous hauntings in the world, such as, The Amityville Horror (we’ll get to that later). Portrayed by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga respectively, the two are wonderful talent to grace the … Read More »
Directed by Lucky McKee
Incest? Check. Rape? Check. Torture? Check. Violent Misogyny? Mega-check.
The movie tells the story of a Nell-like wildling woman who intersects with “civilization.” Unfortunately for her, “civilization” is in the form of a control-freaky lawyer (Sean Bridgers) who captures her and takes her home to the fam.
The lawyer chains her up in his bunker/cellar and hilarity ensues. As the film progresses, we are treated to a thinly veiled didactic feminist tale; stereotype upon stereotype stack for the director to make his point. The lawyer beats his complacent and obedient wife, encourages his son’s sexual deviance, and rapes the captive Woman. Wait, is he the one who knocked up his teenage daughter?
Stereotypes in The Woman Reveal A Thinly Veiled Feminist Tale
The story arch is predictable on the macro scale; the wild woman has more class and strength than the … Read More »
It’s not very often that a book I’ve read gets made into a movie. Usually, I end up seeing a movie, finding it out it was a book, and then getting excited to read it because the book’s always better. I’ve never had to wait while a movie studio looks for crew and starts auditioning actors that I’ll probably hate, all the while ignoring perfectly good options that so obviously would have worked out better. No, all that protective anticipation just gets turned into rapt fascination on my drive to the bookstore to buy something I know I’ll love even more than the movie I just saw.
So, this whole business with John Dies at the End was completely new to me. I’d read it originally when it was posted on David Wong’s site, like, ten years ago. Then I went … Read More »
Horror movie previews have a tough job to do. They need to capture the essence of a film in 3 minutes or less and give away enough of the film to make you want to see it, but not so much that they spoil the surprises of the film. Audiences don’t want to feel disappointed because all of the scariest stuff was shown in the preview, and since most horror movies will lose a chunk of their potential audience when they get slapped with an R-rating, the pressure is really on for studios to crank out great previews that make even a mediocre movie look like a must-see cinema event. They want to disturb the audience enough to leave them saying, “I have got to see that movie!”
Challenge of the Trailer – Drawing Audiences Without Revealing Spoilers
Here are several horror … Read More »
Released August 31st was the suspense thriller The Tall Man, starring Jessica Biel (Texas Chainsaw remake, The Illusionist) and co-starring Stephen McHattie (Pontypool, Exit Humanity). The film is about a small mining town called Cold Rock that is suffering from more than the loss of jobs after the mine shuts down. A dark secret is harbored among the community and amid the depressed citizens and bleak attitudes, children are being taken from them vanishing almost instantly. A legend spawns about a mysterious figure called The Tall Man, a name that was mutually given by the parents of Cold Rock. Some claim to have seen a dark hooded figure coming in and out of the dense forests at night…
The film opens with Julia Denning, played by Jessica Biel, as the town nurse who works for the local free clinic and is … Read More »
The next installment of Paranormal Activity has just released a full trailer. Just like the first three horror masterpieces, Paranormal Activity 4 is again centered around home-video footage of the paranormal haunting innocent victims. This time around it seems as though it’s a blonde teenager who is being haunted. This installment features Katie Featherston like the previous three as well as “Glee’s” Dianna Agron, Sprague Grayden, and Brady Allen.
Paranormal Activity 4 Set to Follow Success of its Predecessors
This one based on the trailer alone looks as though it will not let down the franchise that has already raked in close to $600 million. We may finally find out what demon-Katie does with Hunter, her kidnapped nephew. Also, this time around the film takes place in November of 2011 rather than the 80′s which was the setting for Paranormal Activity 3. It … Read More »
Released today was the trailer for the upcoming film The Tall Man, a suspense thriller about a mysterious figure that is the cause of missing children surrounding a small town called Cold Rock. The film is starring Jessica Biel (Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake, The Illusionist) who plays a nurse living in the town with her young son. Dismissive of the Tall Man legend, she comes to be a believer when upon coming home she finds that her boy’s room is empty. Rushing downstairs she catches a glimpse of a dark figure holding him and chases after it desperate to find out where her child was taken and what this legend really is.
Mythical Tall Man Terrorizes Small Town
The legend of Tall Man in this movie is similar to the popular urban legend called Slender man, who is also a mythical tall … Read More »
Directors: The Vicious Brothers
Release Year: 2011
I know what you’re thinking. Another crappy P.O.V. (point of view) horror movie fully equipt with a shaky lens and bad zoom. That is precisely what kept me from watching this on Netflix. I would casually pass over it thinking it was just another Ghost Hunters rip off type of show having not paid attention to the length which is 92 mins, about the time of a feature film. But, after I caught the trailer on my Facebook feed it all became clear. I was intrigued while viewing the goosebumps inducing preview which doesn’t do the movie justice, so don’t skip out due to any preconceived notions you may have about the “mockumentary” genre.
Lost Film Footage Discovered
The premise of the film surrounds a group of amateur ghost hunters who are trying to make it big … Read More »
Yes the rumors you have heard are true, this is indeed a very….um….what’s the word….starts with an F, any ways that’s not important.
ON TO THE MOVIE!
Nice change of pace, the victim is male. Typical scum bag horn ball that I assume is the bad guy at first. But NO! He is our hapless victim taken away and knocked unconscious.
He wakes up in a very dingy cell, with two very upset men, who promptly begin a series of physical, psychological, and pharmacologic torture. Some seem to make very little, to no sense at certain moments. But, they are twisted and barbed.
They make him wear a dress, and continue with the torture, burn away his finger prints and announce “you are not you”.
There are really only three actors in this movie (extras and people dead before the movie began aside) and one … Read More »
“Children of the Corn”, yes they made another one. The 8th I think…if you count the SyFy original one. Well, I have seen worse! If that’s a compliment then take it as you will.
This movie had pretty much nothing to do with any of the other movies, which in some cases is a good thing.
“Based on a story by Stephen King” is what I saw at the beginning…..boy that is a stretch as it has nothing to do with Stephen Kings short story.
Creepy Night Spent With Preacher After Couple Gets Stranded
Obviously shot on a very low-budget and missing of any physical presence that makes the budget meaningless. It is about a young couple who, after being victims of a breakdown, which is the way they all seem to start, must camp for the night with a weird and aggressive preacher. The preacher … Read More »
Sci-fi/horror buffs may have noticed something strangely familiar in the previews of Ridley Scott’s upcoming sci-fi/horror film, Prometheus. While many of Scott’s films share that same dark, misty scenery, the Prometheus previews go a step further, featuring well-known elements from his classic 1979 film, “Alien“, including large cylinders that looked like the eggs that spawned the infamous “face-hugger” aliens, as well as a large, mysterious alien creature that looked very similar to the alien corpse the crew of the Nostromo found in the original Alien that later became known as the “space jockey.”
Those similarities are no accident. But is Prometheus a tried and true prequel to the “Alien” movies? Or is it a film that just happens to be set in the same universe with occasional nods to the film series that inspired it?
Film to Explore Origins of Alien Creatures
Originally, … Read More »
Director: James Watkins
Date: February 2012
“During afternoon tea, there’s a shift in the air, a bone-trembling chill that tells you she’s there. There are those that say the whole town is cursed, but the house on the marsh is by far the worst. What she wants is unknown but she always comes back, the spectre of darkness, the woman in black.”
So goes the haunting rhyme that set up the trailer for the film “The Woman in Black”, a Hammer Studios production. The film takes place in the Victorian era and stars Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter series) as Arthur Kipps, a broken lawyer still trying to recover from the death of his wife who died during childbirth. Arthur is sent to a creepy seaside town known as Eel Marsh where he is assigned to handle the estate of the infamous Eel Marsh … Read More »
Director: Mathew Kohnen
I was searching for something a little outside the box…
Okay, #1 I have been a fan of zombies for a long time, and I still have a warm (or maybe cold) place my heart for them. But they are getting a little too popular now, and beginning to be too popular to like, if you know what I mean. I’m getting a little bored with them.
So I was trying to find something about zombies…with a twist. And I found it!!
This movie is only for those of you who like lots and lots of comedy in your horror.
Did mention lots?
I must say, this really threw me for a loop, even the Netflix description didn’t prepare me for what the movie was actually about.
Tasty Treat Turns Four Friends Into Walkers
Four friends eat some extremely green dairy treats and turn into zombies, but they don’t know … Read More »
Director: Wes Craven
The story of a killer getting killed then coming back to murder children years later has been used and abused through the years in the film industry. It seems to be the basis of most classic horror. When we take a look at the stories of Michael Myers, Jason Voorhees, or Freddy Krueger there is a common thread, vengeance. “My Soul to Take” follows this same basic premise and adds a little twist to it.
Split Personalities Take Over Man’s Life
Abel is a family man with a daughter and a pregnant wife who realizes his own secret, he has split personalities and one of them is a murderer. The murderer side warns Abel not to tell the police or he will kill his family. One fateful night, he calls his doctor to tell him of the murders only … Read More »
Directors: Rémy Belvaux, André Bonzel
Date: September 1992
Now there are several types of horror movies in this world, some to make you scream, some to disgust you, some to make you root for the bad guy, some even to make you laugh.
“Man Bites Dog” is a little bit of all of those. Ben is your average, run of the mill serial killer. Remy and Andre are the documentary crew following him around. Not only are they the writers, directors and producers, but they also use their own real first names.
I don’t think you can get any “darker comedy” than this — it’s even in black and white!
“Spur-of-the-moment” Feel Adds Style to Film
The script comes off very “spur of the moment”, almost improved sometimes, which really helps to add to the documentary feel of the film.
The original score written for the movie is well … Read More »
Director: Nick Lyon
Date: 2011 (t.v.)
Picture this, if you will. Zombies!
I know it’s hard to imagine. It’s easy if you try.
Zombies everywhere, very few humans left on Earth
They let you know right off in the opening that the human race is going down like a meteor crash. The VM2 virus was let loose upon mankind and it was goodbye for 90 percent of the people on Earth in a very short period of time. (The zombie virus is called VM2. V.M. are the initials of one of the writer’s fiancés).
Survivors Emerge From the Shadows to Fight
A group of survivors comes out from hiding as the horror subsides and the dead have won. The living begin to try to make their way across the country to the Island of Catalina off the cost of California
I noticed a lot a “shout outs” to … Read More »
If the fans of Dark Shadows were vampires themselves, the recently released trailer for Tim Burton’s upcoming remake of the classic soap opera would have been enough to drive a stake through their hearts.
Prior to the release of the trailer, fans were only treated to still images of a ghostly Johnny Depp in character as Barnabas Collins, the tragic and tortured character credited for making the original soap opera series a cult classic. But with the release of the trailer for Burton’s film, fans realized that Burton had done the unthinkable. He had taken their beloved Gothic tale of love and loss and turned it into a comedy.
Original Dark Shadows Intended to be Mysterious Not Campy
While the original series, which ran from 1966-1971 on ABC, is now considered to be campy and melodramatic, creator Dan Curtis’s original take was intended … Read More »
Director: John McNaughton
Dead Naked Girls, there’s several of them the first few minutes of the movie.
So the movie is off with bang! Sort of…you don’t actually get to see any of these murders, and a couple of them look confusing…One happened with a Coke bottle, I think.
That’s one way to get your attention. Well, slowly pan over and get your attention. But its a good start anyways!
Out of Jail Killer Back to His Old Ways
Michael Rooker is amazing and very believable as our hero: humble, soft-spoken killer Henry Lee. Who recently got out of jail, only to go back to his old habits. Murder is a hard habit to break apparently.
Occasionally I got the feeling like I was watching a 70’s porno……..just shut up and get to the good parts.
But the good parts do come in surprising waves of … Read More »
Date: October 2007
Director: Andrew Cymek
Cross over films that span genres are probably some of the best films out there. When you think it’s a dark comedy about some guy writing a script and it turns into an intense drama with murder and drug smuggling. Or folks are running from the newly risen dead but are quirky enough to make you laugh as they deal with the once normal world turned sour. Dark Rising is a genre crosser but I’m not saying it was done in an agreeable manner.
A Man’s Ex and Her Coven Bring Trouble to Campout
Picture a Dolph Lundgren looking social outcast named Jason, hell-bent on getting back together with his ex-fiancé. He has a brilliant idea of re-kindling the flame by inviting her and two of her friends on a camping trip with his buddy who is obsessed … Read More »
Directed By: Joel Anderson
Back in 1999 a mockumentary swept through the horror scene and caused quite the raucous. The Blair Witch Project brought dark woods and hand held camera usage to a whole new level. Since then a smattering of this type of film style has run rampant in the film genre we hold dear. From zombies, to mutants, to a giant city-destroying thing, we have seen many, many hand-shaken moments that make us want to vomit when ogling them on the big screen.
An Accident Leaves Family Haunted
Lake Mungo is the story of a father, mother, son, and daughter out for a fun day of swimming and enjoying some nice weather. The day is shattered when Alice, the daughter, drowns while attempting to swim back to shore. After her funeral, the fun begins to happen around the house. So … Read More »
Directed by Guillermo del Toro
Foreign films have an odd way of feeling so real that it’s scary. I’m not sure if it’s the shooting style, the fact that the actors are mostly unknown to me, or that I have to read so I can’t find all of the blemishes that would typically stand out in your American horror film. While subtitles deter some, I welcome the test of my reading comprehension.
Orphan Combats Bullies and Ghosts
The story of “The Devils Backbone” has striking similarities to “Pan’s Labyrinth”, another film Toro directed and wrote 5 years later. In “The Devil’s Backbone” we follow the story of a young son of a soldier killed in war. The son, Carlos, is left at an orphanage and has to fend for himself against bullies, a grounds keeper with a mean streak, and the ghost … Read More »
Director: William Friedkin
Date: December, 1973
Somewhere between science and superstition, there is another world, a world of darkness. Things beyond rationality and reason have a tendency of making us search for the answers to the questions we cannot fully comprehend. We simply cannot accept the fact that sometimes there exist situations that are beyond our control, that shake us to the very core of our humanity, that everything, including our faith, becomes tested.
Viewers Flee From Theatre In Terror
I never had the luxury of seeing “The Exorcist” when it hit theaters. Reports from 1973 speak of viewers fleeing from the movie in shock and of stunned silence reigning throughout packed movie houses. Although audiences have become more desensitized to the images conveyed in the film, “The Exorcist” has withstood the test of time and remains one of cinema’s greatest horror movies ever.
The … Read More »
Director: Steve Miner
Date: July, 1998
In 1998, John Carpenter’s Halloween, a film that had inspired a decade’s worth of bloody slasher movies, was turning twenty years old. To date, the original Halloween has been one of the few entries into its gory genre to inspire praise from critics, rather than the scorn reserved for most of the so-called “splatter films.” There’s good reason for that: Halloween is a well-crafted excursion into terror, where the focus is on shivers, not fake blood and gross-out wounds.
The travesty is that the sequels that followed the predecessor never matched the effectiveness. Sure, Halloween 2 could have been considered campy fun, but once we arrived to the final indignity of Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers, the thrill was dead and buried. So when Dimension studios opted to commemorate the anniversary of the original by releasing … Read More »
Director: Samuel Bayer
Date: April 2010
Hollywood should really be ashamed of itself. There are so many untold and underutilized stories, yet production companies keep falling back to remaking classics they shouldn’t really touch. Have you seen the retelling of A Streetcar Named Desire or Citizen Kane? No? That’s because they’d never touch them. Why? Because they’ve been labeled classics and people are afraid to go hardcore against the grain. Yet we are seeing all too often a remake of a horror movie that would have been better off left alone.
Horror Remakes Go On Overdrive
I’m talking the “I Spit on Your Grave”, “Last House on the Left”, and “Prom Night” type remakes. The ones that punch you in the gut because the original was so good, and then someone comes along with a few extra bucks and hopes to do something better. … Read More »