Thursday, January 18, 2018

The Time Machine Review

The Time Machine Poster From 1960
Today, for the sake of this site, we are going back to a science fiction masterpiece. We are going back to the 1960 science fiction era, and reviewing “The Time Machine”. This of course was a movie that was adapted from the novella by H.G. Wells, and it is one of the classic movies that would garner a great deal of cult status after it was released. It would also win an Academy Award for the photographic effects that were included in the film. This is an interesting movie on a lot of levels, and it’s something that you must see, if you haven’t seen it before.

The story is simply enough, George is a man that has figured out time travel, and he wants to tell his friends about it. When none of them believe him, and they all just don’t’ really think he should be going forward or backwards in time for that matter. They all leave, and some just dismiss it, but he can’t stop himself from moving through time. So he gets into his time machine, which is a large contraption, and he goes through time. He stops in a few places, and he sees what would happen to his home, the future, the past, and then gets stuck in the year 802,701. He meets a tribe of people that willingly go to a suicidal location, but they don’t really understand what is going on. As George explores a bit more, he encounters Morlocks, and they are the villains that are killing people left and right, so he decides to rescue them and fights back. After fighting back and figuring out how to get rid of them, he travels back to his time and place. However, he decides that he doesn’t like it, so he heads back to spend time with the hot chicks in the future. Even though there’s an element that could easy become a porno movie, this is not exactly like the Peter North film that has a similar name.

The cast all look familiar to me. They include Rod Taylor, Alan Young, Yvette Mimieux, Tom Helmore, and Sebastian Cabot just to name a few. The film grain is great on DVD and Blu Ray, and I’m fascinated how the whole thing was restored and kept up for sound design and more. You’ll be shocked by how well it all looks today, even though this was made in the 1960s.

The overall plot and movie move fast, and while it’s not scary, it certainly follows the story of the H.G. Wells Novella really well. The time travel mechanic is fast, has no scientific basis, and really just formulates a monster movie plot that is quite fun to watch. I enjoyed the way the movie went forward, and it felt like a longer edition of “The Twilight Zone”, rather than a full length movie. It’s a testament to how well this movie worked back then, and how well it works now. I enjoyed it.

If you haven’t seen “The Time Machine” from 1960, perhaps it’s time to get your hands on this one. It works on many levels, and if you really want to dig into something from the past, this is a good one. It features good acting, excellent effects, and a story that is very much in the science fiction and horror genre, without pushing gore or anything like that. Heck, I’d let kids see this one, it’s that tame at times. It’s a good little movie, and one that many a nerd will reference here and there.

You can purchase “The Time Machine” on Blu Ray and other formats by clicking here, and I highly recommend you do so.

Friday, December 29, 2017

Creep 2 Review

Creep 2 (2017) Poster 
You didn’t think I’d leave you all hanging through the New Year without first posting a new review, did you? Well, is there anyone still reading this blog? This thing has been alive and well for many years, and I’m still chasing the wind, so to speak. This time around, there are 3 actors that put on a show in this movie. However, Karan Soni isn’t in the movie for very long. The movie moves alongside Mark Duplass and Desiree Akhavan. The same premise that you got before is now here, only things aren’t going to smoothly for our main character, Josef. This time around, he is calling himself Aaron, and he invites a woman named Sara to his house to help do some videography. “Creep 2” pushes the boundaries of how comfortable you are going to be with someone, and really scares through a tension point that is absolutely stellar at times.

The plot of the movie is very much the same as you would expect from the previous release. This time around the villain admits he’s a serial killer, and is interviewed by the woman. However, things start to get weird as she turns to the camera and confesses that things are getting odd, and that Aaron is starting to become weirder and asking for odd things. The same progression happens that the other movie goes through, only this time, Sara isn’t afraid, doesn’t jump, and goes head first into the psychosis that Aaron presents, even turning the tables around and causing him to run for his life at times.

“Creep 2” slowly builds, and continues to build through 78 minutes of two characters trying to get the one up on each other. The movie is scary, but in a very familiar way, causing you to second guess what you’re watching. There’s several scenes that are bloody, or cause panic, and are quite alarming for this type of found footage movie. As the movie progresses, however, you get a serious twist, and some stellar framework, and nice push forward to breaking through what you expect from the film. It’s not what you think, until the very end, and right before it, actually. I would love to ruin it for you, but it’s a movie that requires patience, because it slowly burns down, and eventually breaks into sheer terror in the closing minutes.

With only 3 actors, and 2 of them carrying the film, you would think that you’d get bored. However, it carries well, and it builds on the first movie, without breaking down into a schlock fest, which is appreciated. Overall, this is one killer movie, and it’s different, yet feels similar too. It’s a good way to end the year if you haven’t seen a lot of horror movies, or you want something different.

I would suggest picking up “Creep 2” on DVD and seeing what the hype is about. It’s one of the better pieces of horror and suspense in the found footage genre. It works on so many levels.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Creep Review

Creep DVD Cover
There are a lot of movies that use found footage, but nothing has been as well done as “Creep” if you ask me. Ok, I am partial to the “Paranormal Activities” movie where they had the Mexican kids in it. I love that one. I think it’s called “The Marked Ones”, but I’ll digress. “Creep” is a movie that stars Mark Duplass as an isolated loner in a cabin. When a photographer answers a Craigslist ad for a photographer he is met by a man named Josef, played by Duplass, and the story moves forward from there. It’s a POV type of movie, that mixes the found footage element, with secondary shots that feature only Patrick Brice and Mark Duplass going through a day trip.

The movie progresses to where you follow the two. The photographer and Josef, and things get a bit weirder and weirder. The goal of the photographer is to capture Josef talking about his life, because he’s going to die and wants his kid to know his father, and the videos are supposed to help. However, as the story unfolds, you are taken through different moments during the day in which Josef seems to be psychotic and starts making jabs at the photographer, named Aaron.

The movie goes very quickly, and ends up with an insane moment where the photographer wants to leave, but he can’t find his keys. He gets Josef drunk, and then tries to make a run for it. Eventually he gets away.

But that’s where things get even weirder. The more the movie goes, the more you start to realize that this is a serial killer movie, and if I go any further, I’ll ruin the movie. Point is, however, the movie is a creepy, and sinister story that unfolds with some incredible element. There’s a mix of horror, found footage, and first person documentary style elements to this movie. It gets so creepy, that you just keep watching to figure out what’s going on, and while there’s no gore, it starts to get scarier and scarier as you watch, until the end.

It’s a psychologically profound, modern, horror movie that slow burns until the end. “Creep” stays with you, and it’s sinister. However, it doesn’t use gore, sex, or violence. There is some violence, but it’s not in your face, and it’s fascinating to see how minimalist set pieces can bring about so much horror today. This is a low budget, effective horror movie, and one of the better ones that I’ve seen in a long time.

You can buy “Creep” on DVD and see why I’m picking this as one of the best horror movies I’ve seen in 2017, and recommend it for those that are jaded by modern horror movies that don’t deliver.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

The Babysitter Review

The Babysitter (2017) Poster 
I’ve seen my fair share of babysitter movies, and no, I don’t mean porno. But this is not the same thing that you are going to get from the 1980s adventures, or the mid 1990s babysitting movies or sitcom shows. This is a rated R horror movie and it is perhaps one of the best horror movies to come out of any studio in the year 2017. I know high praise, right? But for whatever reason the Netflix people were able to pull off what many mainstream studios haven’t been able to put together, and that’s a solid horror movie with a lot of elements that make sense, rather than getting to the nonsensical route. I’m not going to say that this is ultra realistic, but there are enough elements to make you think twice about nominating another movie as the best of 2017.

The movie is simple enough, starring Samara Weaving as a babysitter, and Judah Lewis as the pre-teen that is in love with her. The two have a good chemistry together, and are friends. But things go awry when he comes out of his room to see the babysitter and her friends doing a cult satanic ritual. They figure out that he saw something, and they want to kill him because he’s a virgin, and that’s where things take a turn. He’s not going to play dead, he’s going to fight back, and as the teens try to kill him, he turns the tables and while “Home Alone” had funny moments, this takes those funny elements and kills off the villains one by one, until the finale leaves your jaw on the floor, because this is not your average horror movie. It has consequences, and those consequences are absolutely thrilling at times.

The gore is turned up. This is not a kid’s movie. The villains get brutally taken care of, and our main character is not without punishment either. He gets beat up a bit, he’s slapped around, but the villains aren’t nearly as smart and end up getting beat up a lot, and eventually, man, you have to see the movie because there’s a sick stunt at the end to really make you question where McG and Brian Duffield came up with this idea.

All of the movie’s elements are well thought out. You get explanations for most of the movie, and when the thrills go down, they are filmed with a precision that only McG could bring forth. He throws in a lot of action that is very well done, giving this a killer production line, and a stellar focus of driving, burning, and gun play. Oh, did I mention the gore? Holy crap, this is a hard R if it were to be rated for theatrical release.

Overall, “The Babysitter” is perhaps the best horror movie that I personally saw in 2017. It has everything you want, without going with gratuitous nudity which is the only reason I won’t say that this is a perfect movie. Other than that, this is a great romp, fun, and comedic, with incredible stunts and a story that actually makes sense overall.

I would recommend that you get this on Blu Ray or something, but it’s only available on Netflix streaming. A service that I’m going to have to buy again, because the company keeps putting out some stellar horror and other stuff.

I do want to shout out Stay Still Reviews, as I was looking through images and found their blog, and it's awesome, go read that!

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

The Ball Review

What if you could scare someone in roughly 8 minutes? That’s the question I asked myself when I first saw the short, “The Ball”, and you know what, it’s as though Edgar Allen Poe has put together a short and thrown it to the masses. The story is simple, Pearlie waits for her boyfriend, and a force comes to throw a wrench into her plans.

The full sequence isn’t long, but it’s poetic, it’s visually compelling, and it’s horror done within a breath. There’s a lot going for this short, from the visuals, to the language, to the sound design, to the editing, “The Ball” grabs you by the neck as soon as you put your guard down and doesn’t let go. I loved it.

Check out the Ball below, and share it with everyone you know, this thing is a true shocker.

This short is directed by Zach Lorkiewicz.

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A writer first, cat lover second, and some other stuff too. Human, with lots of faults, and terrible communication.
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