Friday, December 23, 2016

The Scary Film Review Returns January 2017

I'm Back in 2017 Bitches!
I was burned out in 2016. I have been a freelance writer since 2009. Writing has taken me from an angst ridden teen in 1999, to a professional in 2009, to a divorce in 2011. I am remarried, and am still writing for a living. I got seriously burned out earlier this year, as I read, watched, and experienced a lot of horror filled things in my life. Then I got another cat. Together, we have 5 cats, and they take up a lot of my attention. I love them so much, and I work really hard to not have to get a 9 to 5. That means that a lot of the time I don’t watch movies, and I don’t read horror novels. Then things changed.

Around the time I stopped writing so much in this blog, I was expelled from American Public University. They gave me a 2.97 GPA and said it wasn’t good enough to continue my master’s degree with them. I was at a low point again. I didn’t want to write anything, outside of my work. So I was here, and there, floating around, doing nothing. But things are looking up now. I enrolled at Southern New Hampshire University, and am pursuing a master’s degree in American History. I’m also back to watching horror, and starting the first week of January, I will be bringing back a review process that will send shivers down the spine of those that followed this blog.

What you can expect in the future will be a lot of reviews. Whether you buy horror movies from my links or not, I’m going to charge ahead and review every single God Damn horror movie known to man. Right now, there are 890 horror movie reviews on this blog, so I’m going to just keep writing until the proverbial wheels fall off.

If you want to help me in my quest, subscribe, click the links to buy movies, and comment. I will be around, tinkering, but until then, I just wanted to let you know that I’m back and I’m ready to watch and comment on a lot of bullshit!

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Nailbiter Volume 2: Bloody Hands Review

Here we go, the second volume in the Nailbiter TPB series. Nailbiter Volume 2: Bloody Hands is a solid second entry into the story that Joshua Williamson and Mike Henderson created. This is a serious book with a lot of elements overall. The push forward in the story focuses on detective work by the local sheriff, the FBI agent, and a woman that wants to give birth within the city limits of serial killer town. Meanwhile, the title character, “The Nailbiter” is not getting any love, and is willing to help the unlikely duo discover what’s going on with the city.

There’s a lot to explore here. I can unpack the larger story, but honestly, you have to check out Nailbiter Volume 2: Bloody Hands and see how it develops. It’s like a horror movie come to the graphic novel world. The artwork is done well, the story keeps you glued to what you’re reading, and there’s plenty of emotion in each panel. Williamson finds a way to create interesting characters. There’s moments that are creepy, thoughtful, and even emotional. There’s moments where gore is highlighted, and then there’s moments where the past and the present collide.

If you like horror, then you’re going to love Nailbiter Volume 2: Bloody Hands. This is a nice mix of new school horror and old school tropes. You get a classic good cop, bad cop, a wild card exonerated serial killer, and a young punk lady that may be starting to realize she’s the next butcher in the series. Oh and of course, there’s also nature in rebellion. Bees are dying in mountains, but why? The reveal is strong.

At the end of the day, Nailbiter Volume 2: Bloody Hands is a solid romp. It continues the first book, while giving you plenty to chew on as you bridge into Volume 3. I was definitely impressed with the art style, and how everything turned out through the story. There are moments of boredom, but that’s only to set up what is to come later. With that, I can only recommend that you start with the first one and work your way through to this one. Williamson is on top of his game, for sure.

You can buy Nailbiter Volume 2: Bloody Hands by clicking here, and see what the hype is all about.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Stranger Things Review

I didn’t expect to see this, as I don’t usually watch a lot of Netflix originals, but my wife decided to spend a full day binging this show. I didn’t hear anything about it until it started playing and realized that a lot of people online were talking about it. No one in my circle was, and I follow sites like Fangoria. Whatever the case was, this show pulled me in through the premise, and didn’t let go until the end credits of the final episode came through.

The premise of “Stranger Things” is simple. A 12 year old boy goes missing from an Indiana town. The boy’s name is Will and his mother, and friends go on a quest to find him. Along the way, the friends meet up with a young girl that has been the victim of science experiments in the facilities nearby. On the other hand, no one believes Will’s mother who swears the boy is alive. Along the way a skeptical sheriff fights back, the FBI comes through, and a nod to all things 1980s Hollywood and horror comes flying at you right away.

How much do you love horror? “Stranger Things” tests you in everything that you know about horror, meanwhile creating a new lavish scenario that is quite good. Every episode ties together so well, and the visual design flow from the credits through the actual events and story, remind you of something else. It’s a homage at times, it’s a rip off to others, it’s fascinating honestly. There are moments where you swear you’re trapped in an alternate universe where “Stand By Me” meets “Needful Things” and gets tossed around in “Alien” and “The Thing”. If you aren’t a horror fan, you will miss all of these things. There’s so much paid tribute to through the episodes that it’s almost as if the show is a love letter to horror movie fans that have been jaded by so many trivial releases.

“Stranger Things” puts on a showcase of creativity at every turn. The story of a young boy’s death or kidnapping is pushed through every emotional query. A science fiction element similar to “Creature” by John Saul is pushed forward too. There’s so much going on here, that you’ll be swimming in a sea of references that you either get, or you just don’t understand. Alone, this is a seriously good thriller and horror movie. However, the sum of its parts makes you feel that you’re reading a Robin Cook novel, let alone a television program that was made outside of the television landscape.

At the end of the day, “Stranger Things” puts you in the 1980s horror movie world. With a telekinetic girl, a group of friends coming of age, aliens, monsters, and even a little bit of “Signs” for good measure. I didn’t love ever single moment of this series. However, I loved enough of the parts to say that this is one hell of a show, and definitely worth your month’s subscription to Netflix. Color me impressed. Color me interested in seeing more. A stellar showcase, and yet, it feels all so familiar somehow.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Ghostbusters Review

The amount of hate that hit this movie before it was released was shocking. People apparently love to hate on anything and everything. The saddest part for me is that they make money off of this. I have been reviewing horror movies and culture on this site and others, and yet I don’t make a dime. I try, but no one buys anything, no ad companies are asking to help, and I can’t even find writers to help me write reviews. I forge on alone, and well, that’s not a bad thing, but it’s draining sometimes. So much negativity. Well, I put on my pants, and I went into see this travesty that some called it, and you know what? I didn’t know what to really expect. Ghostbusters opened this past weekend, and I got 2 tickets, a large soda, a large popcorn, and a very good Ecto Cooler cocktail at the AMC bar before the show.

Ghostbusters is a fun movie. It starts out really hard, and then softens up a little. The jokes are not insane, they are subtle at times, they are fun too. This is not the 1980s, and the pacing of this movie shows it. Things go by a little faster. The cinematography wasn’t terrible, the story wasn’t insane, but rather in line with a lot of the elements that you would expect from the series.

The acting was not bad, the movie heralded some good, overall moments. I didn’t hate anything I saw in this movie, and at times, I wanted to join in on throwing tomatoes. Instead, the plot of a few scientifically driven women to capture paranormal activity was done well. From the opening to the finale, I had a good amount of fun with Ghostbusters. I didn’t take it too seriously, and I viewed it with an open mind.

I am older than most of the idiots that are talking bad about this movie. I loved this. I really wished I had a daughter to share the amount of empowerment showcased in this movie. The standout for me was the interaction between the women. There’s a lot of little things, from hand gestures, to looks, to smiles, that make this movie fun. The plot is simple. Someone’s trying to open up portals to ghosts and become a super power. It’s up to these women to stop it. The movie then moves forward into a hero’s story with this team getting through some great visual effects, and some fun musical cues.

There’s a lot of cameos that you may not realize, and some that are absolutely obvious. Overall, Ghostbusters didn’t deserve the hate. Not even from the Angry Video Game Nerd, which has let the money go to his head. Must be nice to be rich. I’m not. I loved this movie, and am still impressed with some of the set designs and notes that made it into this movie. Look, if you love movies, you will love this. It’s a popcorn flick, simple as that. It’s not meant to be Oscar Award Winning cinema, and it never feels that way. So there you have it, go see it, disagree with me, and review it for yourself. Don’t let idiots sway you, this is a fun romp.

Love the original Ghostbusters? Then here's the complete box set for the originals, buy it before they change it for good:

Monday, July 11, 2016

Nailbiter Volume 1: There Will Be Blood Horror Comic Book Review

I have been on a little break from viewing horror movies, simply because I have reached horror review number 890 with that last opus. So today, I wanted to talk about a book that I recently picked up and read. It’s a graphic novel volume of the first few comics from the Nailbiter series. I had nothing to really consider about this option, other than the cover. They say you shouldn’t judge a book by the cover, but I say, you should always do so! Judge it, and read it!

Nailbiter is written and illustrated by Joshua Williamson, Adam Guzowski, and Mike Henderson. These guys have created one well of a story, and it is not too unlike what made “True Detective” such an epic first season run.

The story of Nailbiter follows an NSA agent, and local sheriff in Buckaroo, Oregon. This city is famous for producing the 16 serial killers, all of which are absolutely insane, and horrific. Why this town? Why now? Well, a fire, a murder, and a lot more mystery starts to unravel in the pages of this horror comic series, and it holds you tight, until you absolutely buckle.

I loved the way that the dialogue flowed, the images showcasing just enough gore, and the frightening elements found within the narrative. Nailbiter does a good job of going for gusto, and then reeling back when you have been hit with something heavy visually and dramatically. It’s a solid focus that will absolutely give you chills, and make you think through the last page.

Nailbiter asks the question, “Where do serial killers come from”, and then knocks out an answer that will stun you. It’s a work of great fiction, rooted in the detective narratives, and horror movies that you may love. This is a thrilling first round up, and one that will make you a true believer, no doubt.

You can pick up Nailbiter Volume: There Will Be Blood by clicking here, it’s well recommended.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Late Phases Review

If you have been following me along 800 plus reviews, then you know I love a good werewolf movie. I love the concept. I even gave an escort a copy of “Howling II” when I was in Las Vegas one year. She wanted to be a writer, and told her that she would benefit from writing about werewolves. It was a brief encounter, but last I checked she was in San Francisco writing for the Huffington Post. Good for you! As for this movie, it’s a different kind of werewolf movie. It is a drama that was directed by Adrian Garcia Bogliano. This was his first attempt at an English language movie and he knocked it out of the park if you ask me. Written by Eric Stolze, and starring Nick Mamici, Ethan Embry, and Lance Guest, this is a tightening screw of a horror film that pushes your emotional buttons until it breaks down your guard and eats your heart out. Like that? Good!

The plot is simple. A blind veteran moves to a small town. He wants to live on his own and doesn’t like a lot of people. One night a werewolf visits him and attacks, his dog goes down and he has to kill it. It’s a gut wrenching scene, especially since seeing eye dogs are masterful helpers and well this guy is now left without his best friend and guide. He thinks a werewolf is at play, and through the course of the movie you see him gearing up for a fight.

Pick Up Late Phases Blu Ray (click image)

Meanwhile the villain is turning all the individuals in the town into wolves, and things are going to rise up, creeping closer. As the body count starts to rise, our main hero, Ambrose, gets ready to take on werewolves, all the while blind, mind you. The ultimate battle takes on a very unique twist, with our hero’s disability taking center stage.

Late Phases has a lot of dramatic leads. It is a slow moving fire. I disagree with “Shock Till You Drop” completely. I do NOT think that they were going for a “Bubba Ho-Tep” vibe at all. That is ludicrous, and stupid to compare. This is not the same, it’s not a comedy in my opinion. Needless to say, this movie is far more dramatic than you may think. It has some serious soul, feeling, and then when you think it’s done, it unleashes the wolves.

Look, the wolves aren’t great. The costuming is lackluster, but the transition was good, and the overall meaning isn’t lost. The bites, the gore, and the horror that sets in is vibrant, with a lot to offer even the most jaded of horror fan. This is a well put together movie, regardless of what pundits said about it. It’s acted well enough, and it truly has a heart. I liked it. I liked the climax, and the overall visual tone of the movie. The “sheep’s” clothing metaphor works just as well here as it did in “Stephen King’s Silver Bullet”. I recommend this one, I liked it a lot, and think that “Late Phases” is worth checking out.

You can purchase “Late Phases” by clicking here, and reviewing it yourself, you know you want to.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Stalled Review

What would you do if you were in the bathroom when the zombie apocalypse happened? Seriously? What would you do? That’s the premise that comes forward in this cult classic, Stalled. Stalled is a movie that I didn’t want to watch for a while, but eventually had to, because I didn’t want this site to die. So here we go, my thoughts and opinions about one of the cleverest zombie movies I’ve seen in a long time. I kid you not, this was creative, and fun.

Stalled came out in 2013. I was aware of the movie, but didn’t really watch it at the time. The movie was written and directed by Dan Palmer, and boy did he do a good job. Hats off to you Mr. Palmer, what a hell of a movie you created, with the help of others of course, but still, this is written very well if you ask me. Of course, no one asked me. If you are looking for a zombie Christmas movie, here it is, a Christmas treat with zombies and a bathroom stall from hell!

The plot is simple. W.C. is a maintenance guy at a high rise and he gets trapped inside of a bathroom stall when the zombie apocalypse goes down. That’s it. Simple plot, and it slowly moves forward into a nightmare. The movie progresses from W.C’s point of view. He eventually realizes that there is a girl in another stall, and the two try to escape, only for the woman to eventually has an emotional crisis about being fat, and gets eaten alive while our anti-hero ends up watching through a peep hole. There’s an identity crisis going on, and I wrongfully thought that it was another cheap ending, but nope, this was smart, it swerved me.

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Overall the gore is tight, the cinematography is good. However, I do have one major critique. The camera stops moving a lot. There are times when you don’t hear anything, and the camera is fixed, with nothing going on. It’s worse than Kevin Smith’s early work. That’s really jarring, but perhaps the method is to get you nervous, sucked into the plot, and waiting for what goes on next. Whatever the case is, Stalled really picks up steam in the third act and never lets go.

There’s comedy, there’s horror, there’s gore, and there’s even a little hot lesbian action! (I kid, but not really)

At the end of the day, Stalled is one of my favorite horror movies that features zombies. This is a quick, 84 minute romp through a “what if” scenario that you no doubt have talked about with your friends, while throwing back a few drinks. I loved it. Even though the pacing was a bit off sometimes, and the quality of film isn’t on par with a lot of mainstream releases, this British horror movie got me hooked fast. I recommend checking it out, especially for the brain bashing toilet humor that is sewn throughout. Great job!

You can purchase Stalled on DVD by clicking here, and why wouldn’t you? It’s damn good!

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Blood Lake Review

Blood Lake here is NOT the porno

A while back I was told to check out Blood Lake. So I finally did. Well, was I surprised to find out that Blood Lake was a pornographic movie that was put out by WCA. If you’re into hardcore, perhaps this is for you, but alas, I was then redirected, as this is NOT the horror movie that I was supposed to watch. But hey, we all make mistakes, right?

The Asylum production studio put out what should be an instant classic with their science fiction, horror movie, that was in conjunction with Animal Planet, of all people. James Cullen Bressack is the director of this one, and it was released in 2014. I wasn’t sure what to expect, and honestly, can’t really say it’s terrible, but I can’t really say that it’s spectacular either.

The movie’s plot revolves around lampreys, which have mutated and are breeding like crazy. These are invading a small town and it’s up to animal control to stop it all. With a limited cast starring Shannen Doherty, Jason Brooks, Christopher Lloyd and others, this one is a shoe string, made for television horror movie with a lot of slow moving plot steps. By the time you get moving through the majority of the movie, you’re grateful to see anything go down.

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The computer graphics in this one are on par with what you’d expect from ScyFy, so I can’t really say much to that. The movie is ok, it is paced slowly, the cast goes through their lines with a semblance of ability, but honestly, it’s not grand. I tried to like this one, but more often, I was shut down by lackluster effects, non-sensical reactions, and attempts at gore.

As far as made for television horror movies, this is not a terrible movie. It’s not the worst thing I’ve ever seen. However, it is far from the best. I wouldn’t recommend Blood Lake from The Asylum, unless you’re a collector or horror movies, are a diehard fan of the actors, or stream it for free. It’s just not worthwhile, in my book. I won’t see it again.

You can always pick up Blood Lake on dvd by clicking here, if you so desire.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

The Twilight Zone Season 1 Episode 7 The Lonely

A Prisoner Falls In Love With A Realistic Robot? What is Love? 
One of my favorite movies from the past few years was “Ex Machina”. But did you know that the Twilight Zone explored this notion long ago? Seriously. On November 13, 1959 the notion of loving machine came into play, and it really shook things up. Rod Serling once again tapped into a very unique circumstance, and gets you thinking about the “What if” factors of what love is. Long before movies started to come into play with this, you are going to think about sex, love, and loneliness when it comes to robots, artificial intelligence, and the realities of loneliness in the seventh episode of the first season of The Twilight Zone.

The plot of this one is simple, as many are. A prisoner is cast off to a planet, alone. He wants to go back to Earth, but the powers that be won’t let him. The same time warp that was in “Interstellar” is described here, as a crew comes to the planet to check in on the prisoner. They say that there is no hope and he is going to stay put. He is given food, and supplies, and the crew leaves. Later a box arrives and in that box is a woman. A woman that is in fact a robot, but has all the elements of humanity, including synthetic skin, and anatomical elements, with an artificial intelligence that feels, cries, and more. It’s essentially a sex robot, come on. The prisoner doesn’t want her at first, but over time, learns to love this robot woman.

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The crew comes back. And our prisoner named Corry is allowed to go back to earth! However, they have to leave in 20 minutes, and that’s it. The crew that is there to pick him up only has room for him and a few of his things, and not the robot, whom is named Alicia. Corry screams and runs after the robot, and swears that he loves her, and that she loves him, only to find out that the world is a cold, cold place, with Alicia taking a gunshot to the face and dying.

What is love? Can you love a robot? The story here is fascinating, and it truly is epic in light of “Ex Machina” and the themes presented in that movie. There are only 5 people in this cast, and yet you get full emotion. Jack Warden and Jean Marsh put on a good performance, and you really start to feel for the lonely. But reality sets in and shakes you up. What is love? You’re left thinking as Rod Serling’s narration gives you a jolt.

“On a microscopic piece of sand that floats through space is a fragment of a man's life. Left to rust is the place he lived in and the machines he used. Without use, they will disintegrate from the wind and the sand and the years that act upon them. All of Mr. Corry's machines, including the one made in his image, kept alive by love, but now obsolete.”

And that my friends, makes for one of the best episodes of The Twilight Zone yet. It’s beyond good, seek it out. Buy the box set, holy crap. It’s an intellectual proponent that you can easily study as an academic, or at least enjoy as entertainment.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

The Twilight Zone Season 1 Episode 6 The Escape Clause Review

The Twilight Zone Explores Immortality 
What if you could be immortal? Would you go for it? That’s the question posed with the sixth episode of the first season of The Twilight Zone. In this case, “The Escape Clause” is the title, and it stars David Wayne, Thomas Gomez, and several others. It was first aired in 1959, and it really does showcase an interesting premise. One that we have explored in horror literature and movies for quite some time. Often, it’s the werewolf or the vampire that lives forever, but what if you didn’t have to be either?

Walter Bedeker is always thinking he is sick; he thinks he’s dying. But out of the blue comes a rogue. The devil shows up and tells him that he can in fact make sure that he lives forever. There is of course an escape clause, and Bedeker can choose to die when he’d like. Simple enough, right?

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What would you do? I don’t know what I would do, it’d be insane. Bedeker in this case uses his immortality to try and collect on a lot of money. He throws himself into insane situations, and collects money from accidents. After he gets bored of all of this, he ends up losing his wife to a fall off a roof. He admits he murdered her, hoping to go the electric chair and surviving, but nope. He gets life in prison and that’s where he asks for the escape.

And that’s that. It’s not a huge twist, but one that got me thinking yet again. This is a morality tale at heart, and one that asks what you would do with immortality? I don’t know what I would do. I can’t imagine living forever, unless I had a bit of money. I guess that’s the big deal here. Money. One has to live, right? And forever? What a cost! Oh well. This is just an example of how great Serling’s mind was. There is only one Rod Serling, and this morality play showcases that. I loved it.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

WolfCop Review

WolfCop is available HERE
I love cult and horror, you know this. 800 plus reviews thus far has proved it. Well, last night while everyone in my house was asleep, I decided to slip in an action horror movie known simply as “Wolf Cop”. I had heard of this before, and I want to say that I saw it advertised at art theaters near me, but I never went to see it. This movie’s premise reminded me of an idea that I had about writing a novel with this notion of a half man, half wolf cop. Then again, maybe I dreamed this movie? I don’t know. Either way, “WolfCop” lives up to a lot of hype, even if the running time is way under the average movie. It’s only around 88 minutes total, but they do a lot more in this than many other horror movies. With that in mind, consider these thoughts on “WolfCop”.

The Transformation

The transformation in “WolfCop” is the most graphic I’ve seen. I say that because it starts with a penis shot transformation and it’s really graphic. In fact, I would not let a younger viewer watch this, it’s that graphic. It may be a few moments, but it’s enough to make you feel very uncomfortable. Heck, I had to look down to see if my junk was going to explode into a wolf penis. Other than that, the transformation is definitely great, fast, and it looked painful to boot. The practical effects and overall cinematography was great to watch, and I loved that aspect.

The story is a bit fast, convoluted, but I can dig it. A drunken cop gets thrown into a serious mess when a coven turns him into a werewolf. This all goes fast, but while he’s transforming, there’s someone close to him that is set to help him thwart off the danger of the coven, that just wants to drink his blood. Our anti-hero must defend himself and try to turn back to human before he is stuck as a wolf forever.

A Fast Paced Visual Feast

There’s enough cult movie references, and status to make “WolfCop” a good watch. It’s fast paced, doesn’t let up, and features a great deal of gore and practical effects. The story is simple, and the ending is quite enjoyable. I liked how it all panned out, and especially give credit to the director of photography for pulling out some great shots in this one. You really get a mix of grindhouse cinema and modern horror mixed with that 1980s cliché visual design palette.

Peter La Rocque’s visuals mixed with Mark Montague’s editing make this a great overall feature in my book. Lowell Dean writes and directs a classic in my book, with a great poster to boot. It’s definitely a quality horror movie that mixes action and 1980s cop influences. This is my third favorite werewolf movie of all time now, and that’s saying a lot. This is a classic folks.

Pick up “WolfCop” by clicking here, and see what all the hype is about.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Barrio Tales Review

Barrio Tales Is Available On DVD HERE
I never get screeners anymore. I did at one point, but these days, no one trusts me enough to send them. That happens, I guess. So whenever you see me review anything, I don’t get it for free like some other sites. Oh, and if I say anything bad about any film, unlike “Freddy in Space”, send it to the director or anyone involved. I’ll man up and stick to my guns about what I say. Unlike that site, and writer. I would like to say that if you are a man enough to write a negative review or opinion, you should be man enough to stand by it if someone else tweets the director. Otherwise, go to hell.

Now, let’s get into the movie “Barrio Tales”, a Latino version of the classic 3 story horror tropes. A couple of brothers directed this, Jarret and Brent Tarnol, and I was immediately drawn to it because the cover looked like a Cypress Hill cover. The movie’s tag line stated, “Terror, from south of the border”, so boom.

This is a trio of tales, like “VHS” and other movies, and it starts with a couple of young adults going to Mexico to score some drugs. When they get there, they end up meeting a Mexican guy that tells them to beware of where they are going, and what they are looking for. As the two question where the drugs are, the sage of sorts tells them 3 stories of Mexican horror, and each one has a different moral, pushing the limits of horror and generalization.

The stories go from cannibalism, witchcraft, and a monster myth. Each one is a short version of horror tropes that you already think about. From teens getting made into edible goods, to witches getting their revenge on a mean person, to the unkillable monster, each option has a Latino twist to the classic horror stories that you already know about. My favorite of the trio of stories is the opening one. A young maid gets drowned by some rich kids, only to end up having revenge taken upon them by witches that hear of the news of the death of the Latino maid. It’s a quick tale of how treating people badly, could result in reaping some serious consequences. This one really felt like “Scream Queens”, with a bit of humor and visual style overall, good stuff.

“Barrio Tales” is a fascinating movie that flows fast, and has some nice cinematography, and decent acting. At times it feels like “Scream Queens”, and at other times it feels like “Tales From The Crypt”. Either way, it’s a lot of fun, and definitely worth checking out overall. The gore was minimal, the horror elements were fine, and for an independent movie, it has some gusto. I’d give it an 8 out of 10, and definitely a rental. I definitely had fun.

You can pick up "Barrio Tales" on dvd by clicking here.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

The Purge: Anarchy Review

Buy Purge Anarchy HERE
Look who is back to writing reviews about random horror tidbits. While I don’t have the time I used to have to write up a lot of different things in regards to horror, I still manage to catch a flick here and there. With that in mind, I went ahead and watched The Purge: Anarchy. This is perhaps one of the most talked about horror movies that I did not see when it came out. People were mixed upon the release, telling me that it either was ok or it was good. What you get here is a continuation of the original story, only this time, you are outside to see the mayhem.

The original Purge movie focused on a home invasion angle, not too unlike “The Collector” or “The Collection”. Those movies had some serious gusto, but it was the same idea that was mentioned in the Purge, with a few twists. Anyways, the marketing changed things up and you were given the notion of anarchy in the streets. This time, it was Downtown Los Angeles that was the framework starting point.

This movie mixes the notion of the original, with the concept of “Hostel”, and it works ok at first glance. But as the movie started to go through the motions, the viewer was introduced to something new, a new character that seemed very familiar. That character, as soon as I saw him, was none other than Frank Castle. That’s right, The Punisher! This movie, for all intents and purposes was nothing more than a Punisher movie to me. Even though the character did NOT have any affiliation with Marvel or the comic book world, that’s what you felt from the “Sergeant” that reuses people from mayhem.

As a horror movie, The Purge: Anarchy is not going to live up to the standards that most people have. If you’re used to slashers, gore, and monsters, this is not for you. This is more of a twisted tale, not too unlike what you’d expect from “The Outer Limits” or “The Twilight Zone”. Simple as that, this is an interesting movie with a lot of heart at times. It’s a frenetic, action movie, with horror movie marketing. So it’s not a horror movie straightway, but it does have horrific ideas.

I don’t recommend The Purge: Anarchy for horror fans. It’s not really that kind of movie. Yes, there are moments in time, but more than that, it’s a thriller or an action movie, as that’s really what you get. You get a lot of gunplay, running from foes, and random acts of evil, rather than that relentless scary element that makes this genre so interesting. It’s good, but not as great as the original, and definitely not going to win you over if you are expecting that home invasion tension that the first one had. It’s good, but not great, and well, it’s worth collecting if you love the first one, before the new one hits theaters later this year.

What do you think? If you liked it, let me know. I you hated it, let me know. If you didn't see it, then by all means pick it up on DVD by clicking here.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

The Twilight Zone The Sixteen Millimeter Shrine Season 1 Episode 4 (1959) Review

Just when you thought I had thrown in the towel, I come up with a new review for you 2 readers left. This time around, I managed to watch an episode of The Twilight Zone from 1959, the first season. This one came to me right after watching Hot Tub Time Machine 2, which can be easily one of the worst sequels ever made. Regardless, this episode of the pivotal television showcase came out on October 23, 1959, and it starred Ida Lupino, Martin Balsam, Jerome Cowan, and Ted de Corsia.

Four Episodes Into The First Season 

“The Sixteen Millimeter Shrine” is the fourth episode in the first season of the series, and it hinges on what many Hollywood stars must go through. An aging actress is watching old movies of her performances, and wishes that she could go back to a place where she was wanted, adored, and the likes. As her days go on, she is in the darkness, drinking, and just doesn’t really go out. When an opportunity to star in a new movie comes about, she jumps at the chance, but recoils when they ask her to play someone more her, “age”. She goes home and is depressed. In her depression, she decides it’s better to go into the screen and live with the past. Well, in The Twilight Zone, anything is possible, and that’s what happens. Barbara Jean Trenton jumps into the screen, and that’s where she stays forever.

Do Actors Wish For This? 

This television showcase is an interesting one. It reminds me a lot of what many older people go through. I met a lot of aging rock stars in my day, and a lot of them act the way Trenton acts. They want that old glory, but they don’t want to admit they are old. The same goes for action sports. A lot of professional skateboarders are dealing with issues of this type. It’s a sad state, but it’s a true state. It got me thinking. What about me? Will I be there? I’m already there, who am I kidding. I used to own a record label. I used to have a huge record collection. I had a lot going for me, and now, I’m battling anxiety and depression on a regular basis, without any health insurance. The struggles of a writer are real.

Oh, the episode! My bad. Overall, this is an interesting episode. It features that nostalgia of past experience, mixed with the present realities. What if you could escape? That’s the premise. Would you live in your greatness and that’s it? I don’t know. The escapism attached to former glory is incredible, even if you only tasted it for a second. Sometimes I wonder what it would be like to get a second chance at being a record label owner. Then again, I’m a writer. I can dream up a lot of things for myself. But as far as this episode, it’s a good one. It has good acting, clever pacing, and that classic twist you’d expect from Serling and company.

Ida Lupino Is Quite The Actress

Is it my favorite thus far? No. It’s only 4 episodes into the first season. I do like the camera work, scripting, and acting. At one point Ida Lupino behaves drunk, but ever so slightly. You’ll have to watch how she plays it in the agent’s office. There’s a subtly to her movements and it’s stellar acting. Ida Lupino died in 1995, but man did she have a beautiful face in 1959. Such a good actress, and famous too. Anyways, this is a good episode, and I enjoyed it. You may like it too.

Order the complete Twilight Zone on Blu Ray by clicking here, please.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Interstellar Review

I didn’t want to watch Interstellar when it first came out. I thought it would be boring. So I didn’t watch it until it finally came out to streaming. After seeing it, I can definitely say it is one of my favorite science fiction movies. If I had a top 3 for last year, I would say that Ex Machina, Elysium, and Interstellar as my favorites from the past year. Whatever the case may be, this is a movie that deserves your time, even if some may say that it’s too long. Interstellar is one hell of a movie.

The movie has a complex premise. The world, in the future, is getting dusty and farmers are going to have a difficult time feeding the world. NASA needs to send astronauts to other worlds to get data to inhabit another earth, or humanity is doomed. Meanwhile there’s an issue going on at a former pilot’s house. A smart daughter, a dumb son, and their future seems to be pushing forward through life, setting up something grand for the future. Now, there’s a subplot here involving a ghost, and the first lines of the film give away that, but most don’t realize what is going on, so they keep going. The movie then pushes forward with our astronauts heading to a new planet to see what is going on.

In the course of over 3 hours, we meet our astronauts, NASA, and much more. There are surprising elements, including a villain that is cryogenic freeze. A fist fight on another planet, and an incredible tidal wave that looks like a building. Science is explained often, and there’s even a video about all the science issues that are described in the movie done by Cinemasins.

You can purchase Interstellar on Blu Ray Here (amazon).

Interstellar is a long movie. It’s a long epic film that nods at Stanley Kubrick’s vision from the past, but gives you something new. There’s a lot of heady material here. It’s perhaps the most science heavy movie that I’ve seen, and really enjoyed the way the movie comes through. The larger picture is a lot more villainous than meets the eye, and it’s done in such an interesting manner. Christopher Nolan pushes the limits here, once again giving you a visual feast. The movie is spotless in a lot of ways, and deserves to be seen in a large format. Imax would’ve been absolutely splendid.

The movie is hard to watch if you’re tired. It’s not action packed. There are no explosions for the sake of it, there’s nothing that you would find in a Michael Bay film. There’s a lot of layers to this movie. From science, cinematography, art, and acting. Even though there are minor gripes, the majority of the movie’s focus on love, loss, distance, time, science, time travel, and visual design is epic in scope. It’s for this reason why we go to the movies. I was more compelled by Interstellar than ANY Star Wars film ever made. There’s a reason why this movie lost so many, and it’s an intelligence factor that wins me over.

There’s fear in this movie, a real fear. You’re going to sense it as you get into the isolation that the astronauts are in. The performances are done well, including the future, past, and present. I am once again completely flabbergasted by Matthew McConaughey’s performance. Anne Hathaway is good, Jessica Chastain, Michael Caine, and Matt Damon put on a showcase. There are some other great performances here, but this movie really does great to showcase the power of acting, and cinema as a whole.

Interstellar is a heady film. It’s on the same par as Primer and Timecrimes. Two of my personal favorite movies. You have to check this one out. It’s a beautiful movie. It’s available right now on Blu RAY and quite a hefty movie. It is more than just a science fiction movie, and you’ll see it when you decide to settle in for the moody dialogue and more.

Check out Cinemasins below to see spoilers, and science notes about the movie.

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