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.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

The Brood Review

The Brood Criterion Collection Cover Blu Ray 
For today’s review we are going to have to go back to the year 1979. That’s when David Cronenberg shocked audiences with a very heavy movie that features horror and science fiction all in the same level. Cronenberg has a knack for creating beautifully haunting pictures, and he has a way of mixing the grotesque with stellar ideologies. In this case, you’re going to find an “art house” focus with the cinematography of Mark Irwin, but the grotesque is not lost, as there’s an insanity plot that you have to see to believe towards the end. The movie in question is none other than the famed movie, “The Brood”.

The focus of the movie is on a psychiatrist and his patient. He is working with a technique that is known as psychoplasmics, which is supposed to let go of problems within the body, and then manifests it outside in other arenas. There are physiological changes to the patient, and through focusing and redirection of the energy, the sickness leaves and manifests in another benign area of the body. However, things get weird when the psychiatrist gets a visit from a patient’s husband, embroiled in a custody battle, he wants to get sole custody of their child. However, the doctor wants to protect the best interest of his patient, so he creates an intense plasmic environment, which ends up causing serious issue.

The plot thickens when small alien children start attacking people around the ex-husband’s world, including a grandmother, and others. As there becomes an investigation, it turns out a dark secret is being held within the compound of the psychiatrist, which turns out to be quite sickening. You see, the patient in question is giving birth to alien children based on her psychotic episodes, and Cronenberg shows you a cycle of birth that is equal parts grotesque, horrific, and gore filled. You have to see it to believe it, as it’s 1979 yet the practical effects are far beyond what you’d expect for the time.

The movie breaks a major taboo towards the end, and that’s the killing of children. You never see that, but in this movie, “The Brood” are not just children, they are alien children, and they will murder at all costs.

The movie is incredible. It has a slow pace, but quickens in the end, so if you aren’t a fan of slow burns, you may miss out. It takes time to build, but when you finally see the villainous brood, you cheer for the main characters and hope for something grand in the end. It has a lot of elements that are going to shock and awe, but only if you invest in the movie long enough to see the end. I can see some people getting bored with this, even though the Howard Shore music keeps you entertained. This is very much a subdued, psychological horror masterpiece, with a nod to science fiction as well. However, it’s slow pacing is going to cause some to turn it off, while others will be grossed out by the birthing cycle that is evidenced in the third act reveal.

If you’re a fan of David Cronenberg, you’re going to love this one. It’s got every trait that you’d expect, and it’s well put together. I highly recommend checking it out, especially for the special effects that are evidenced towards the end of the movie.

You can buy the superior Criterion Blu Ray Edition of “The Brood” by clicking here, as it’s well worth an addition to your collection.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Deep Red Review

Deep Red Poster (1975)
One of the best directors in horror is Dario Argento. He is an Italian horror director that creates lavish set pieces, with amazing colors and commentary that is absolutely grand. I love his work, and have reviewed many of his movies on this website. However, today, we are going to talk about one of my favorite movies of his, and it’s “Deep Red”. This is a movie that features a lot of different elements that you would get from horror, and with the idea of “Gialo” detective movies. The music, the visuals, and the story will definitely stun most.

The movie features a man that looks a lot like Paul McCartney, and he is a piano player. He is working on a piece when something happens during a lecture. A psychic seems to see something evil, and she senses it. When this is all said and done, she goes to her apartment, and out comes a figure in the dark and hatchets her to death! I kid you not. You don’t see the killer, you get a POV version of the events. This also occurs to several other people that have something to do with the music, and our main composer is on the hunt, alongside a journalist. The two have a slight love story, but the bodies keep piling up. Along the way, you get to see POV style death sequences that are over the top, grotesque, and yet charming with the way that Dario Argento works through the color palette and the music of Goblin. Great stuff.

The movie is a bit slow, and my version of the movie didn’t have subtitles at all. It would cut in and out of Italian, and it was a bit difficult to manage. There was dubbing for half of the movie, and the other half had Italian. Now, I speak Spanish and Italian is not too far away from it. I liked that, and it was interesting to listen to the languages. Goblin’s score is great overall, and I loved it.

As for the movie, this is an interesting take on horror, and features a detective subplot, with a little love thrown into the overall elements. However, when the killer is revealed, you feel like air is coming out of a balloon slowly. The buildup is epic, but you’re going to end up laughing at the ludicrous nature, and the overall findings. It’s funny, and not at all what you’d expect. However, the special effects, the visual design, and the movie is quite good overall.

Dario Argento’s “Deep Red” has a lot of creepy moments. Good direction, misdirection, and quality music from Giorgio Gaslini and Goblin. It really is a good horror movie, and it’s paced well, with some great elements of fear, especially considering this was from 1975 of all years.

You can pick up “Deep Red” on blu ray by clicking here. It’s worth checking out, especially on Halloween!

Did you see “Deep Red”? If you did, drop me a comment below.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Frankenhooker Review

Frankenhooker Poster
Let’s journey back to the 1990s, and check out a movie that most people don’t even remember. That’s right, we’re going to talk about the black horror comedy entitled, “Frankenhooker”. Now, this came into my view via an adult website, and once I realized it wasn’t an adult feature, I had to check out the film. It starts Penthouse Pet Patty Mullen, wearing a fat suit at first, and a bunch of no-name stars, but that doesn’t matter, because this is not going to make a career out of anyone, with a few exceptions.

The movie is a fast paced horror comedy, and features a young man’s quest to bring his fiancĂ© back to life. When his girl dies from a lawnmower accident, he goes through a lot of endeavors to reanimate her, but doesn’t have enough parts. So he starts to hire prostitutes, but when they find his super crack, they start exploding. That upsets their pimp, and while he is able to make his woman come back, she becomes a Frankenstein monster, and hooker, and well that leads to a lot of shenanigans.

The movie is only 85 minutes long, but there are a lot of great sequences here. There’s the constant exploding of the hookers, there’s the continual beat downs that Jeffrey Franken gets, and of course the nudity. If you’re a fan of gratuitous nudity, then you’re going to love the middle point of this movie because there’s a lot of exposed breasts. The movie goes from horror to absurd in 60 seconds, and you can’t really take this one too seriously.

Aside from the “Frankenstein” plotting, this is a movie that features a lot of interesting points, and is a nice set piece to the original book by Mary Shelley. But is it worth your time? YES! This is a great romp into the 1990s, late grindhouse era of movies that have good overall effects, funny moments, and classic one liners. The same guys that did “Basket Case” are responsible for this movie, and you can see it through their gross out effects, the explosions, and musical selections. This movie has one killer ending too, making it one of the better horror comedies to come out of the 1990s. It’s one that you have to see to believe, because you can’t get away with a lot of the things that this movie had in it.

This is one hell of a movie, and it is worth checking out. It has everything you'd want in a horror movie, and then some.

You can purchase "Frankenhooker" by clicking here. 

Did you see "Frankenhooker"? Drop me a line in the comments. 

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Cult of Chucky Review

Cult of Chucky 2017 Cover
This is the seventh movie that features the killer doll, and you would think that they would run out of ideas. But nope, here we are with an all new full length feature that is all about Chucky and his killer ways. This time around there are some very nuanced kills, and thrills, with a story that isn’t too bad, but isn’t going to win any awards at any point either. “Cult of Chucky” went straight to DVD and Blu Ray and is now available, but I wasn’t paid so here’s my honest review sans any sponsorship as per usual.

The movie picks up where the previous one ended, this time around with Nica in a wheel chair and trying to figure out why she’s in an asylum after blaming Chucky for burning down her house and family. Of course, that’s the doppelganger because the movie is going to feature a lot of different elements that will tie this to the past, and the future.

In another section of the movie we catch up with Andy, the kid that started it all, and he has Chucky’s head and has been torturing it for a long time. Through the course of the movie, he has been trying to tell the asylum that holds Nica that Chucky is alive and is going to kill again. They don’t believe him. They throw him out, and of course we continue our story.

The movie is a slow moving starter, but it starts to gain steam when Chucky comes alive, and you realize that there’s more than one. Then you start to think that this movie is lazy, with the idea of the existence of Chucky being only in Nica’s mind, but that’s a red herring. The movie switches tones, and starts back into the one liner, comedic elements of Chucky, with him slashing, and dicing his way through the asylum.

There’s a lot to this movie, but at the same time, there’s a limited cast, and it really drives through a convoluted voodoo plot that throws away a few ideas, but at the same time, builds into the ethos of what made “Child’s Play” so good. There’s a lot going for it, and the visual design is the main key factor. The visuals and kills are juxtaposed with a clean, white, and pure asylum in contrast to the redness of the blood.

The movie was good. It had some decent acting, some great pacing, and a body count that rivals the original film. You get a lot of loose ends tied, and eventually, Chucky and Tiffany reunite. Woops, I spoiled it! Hahah!

I recommend checking out “Cult of Chucky” it’s a modern send up to the classic series, and not half bad if you ask me.

You can purchase “Cult of Chucky” via Blu Ray by clicking here.

What did you think of “Cult of Chucky”? Drop me a line in the comments below.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Mother! Review

Mother 2017 Poster
Darren Arnofsky once again pushes the limits of film making and has divided audiences. Even in my own house, things are divided when it comes to this movie. There is no “one” consensus that I’ve seen online from reviewers, and fans alike. Everyone has an opinion, and you can take this movie in two very different directions. It is a scary film in one way, but it is not a horror movie in the traditional sense. It’s a claustrophobic, pretentious art film with some incredible acting, and some very unique elements that keep you on your feet, even if it does drag a little through the middle of the movie.

The premise is simple enough, but the details are where things get really murky. The story follows a writer who is struggling to come up with his next hit book, and is having a hard time. He is living in the middle of nowhere, the woods, with his wife, and they are living a quaint lifestyle. But then a stranger shows up and throws a wrench into their world, only to have his wife come in and step all over their life, and ruin a set piece that is the life blood of the story. Things continually get out of hand, as the story unfolds and you find out that people are starting to discover that the famed artist and writer lives there, which then prompts chaos as the movie goes on. But if that’s not enough, the main characters go through a pregnancy, and delivery of a baby, only to have it worshiped by the followers of the poet, and beyond. But that’s only glossing over the surface, because this movie throws you into a centrifugal forced loop before dropping you off in another dimension, as only Arnofsky can do.

Javier Bardem was in this movie where he played a man dying of cancer in “Biutiful”. I loved that movie, and this felt a lot like that performance. He was brooding, emotional, and it seemed like he was dying again. Jennifer Lawrence was squarely in this movie, as the camera had her reactions, face, and much more for a lot of it. Even sequences that were meant to be blistering, and shocking, showcased her face and the transitional elements of computer graphics, alongside her face and aging process rather than stepping back. One reviewer said this was claustrophobic, and I tend to agree.

There’s no music. That threw me off. There’s a lot of Foley work, and a lot of scary moments with blood, cursing, and nightmarish situations that all pose to be alliteration to many tales of religious ceremony. I can count all of them, but you only get them if you are religious or are a scholar of any sort of divinity. If you’re not, then you’re going to think this movie is about the creative process, or about marriage, or about mother Earth. There’s so many symbolic elements, and yet nothing really prepares you for what seems like a lazy bit of writing at the end.

Like my review of “Time Crimes”, I think this is a good movie as a stand alone tale. However, it falters in that it is very pretentious, on the edge of preaching to the audience, while inserting so much symbolism that it loses connection with the audience many times. It’s a long movie to watch, and one that will grab your attention, but it is not horror, it’s not really scary, and you really have to be an intellectual to grab all of the things that Arnofsky is throwing you at you.

Mother! Will either bore you, or make you think long after it’s over. For me, it made me bored, then made me think, before I gave up on it again. It’s not a bad movie, it’s just not horror, and to me, felt a lot like an Italian Art House picture instead of a major film from the states. It’s not bad, it’s just not as good as some people think.

Friday, September 8, 2017

It (2017) Review

It Poster (2017) 
“It” by Stephen King is a 1200 page behemoth of a book. I couldn’t finish it within 21 days. I borrowed it from the library, and couldn’t finish it fast enough, and I’m now on a waiting list to get it again. In the mean-time, I was able to see the new movie that is based on the film. The movie of course is a remake of the mini-series, and is now split into two movies, one focusing on the youth of the characters and one that focuses on the adults. So here we are in 1989, and we are introduced to the main characters, and follow through fast pop culture references, and horror infused elements starting with Pennywise showing up and showing his true colors.

The visual design of this movie is great. Don’t get me wrong. There are some great elements of modern computer graphics throughout. There’s a lot of elements that just bring the nightmare to reality, and Pennywise this time around is far more devious than anything you’ve seen on the screen. However, it’s in that piece that you start to feel left out by the book’s creative alluring clown, and start to just get a creepy vibe that was fueled within “American Horror Story”.

Throughout the movie I kept thinking that this was just “Stand By Me 2”, because it felt that way a lot of the times. Furthermore, it felt like watching Stephen King’s version of the “Goonies” which is what The Los Angeles Times agreed with in their review. The complexity of these characters that were found in the book is gone, and you don’t really care about them. I cared the most about Bev, but that’s because her reality was far worse than the clown’s sinister behavior.

This movie felt a lot like “Monster House” mixed with “Stand By Me”, and that’s not a good thing. While I found myself lost at times in the nostalgia, I couldn’t shake the fact that there was a lot missing from the book’s central themes, and truly horrific scarring as children, that turned into adults. These kids don’t seem that scarred, and it makes me think that their future is just fine, because they honestly overcome Pennywise like a boogeyman, which he’s not supposed to be.

Omissions aside, this movie isn’t what you think. It’s a slick, Pg-13 level movie, with a rating of “R”. I don’t know why it’s rated “R”, it doesn’t showcase a lot of elements that the movie “Drag Me To Hell” didn’t show, and I hated that movie. “IT” is not a great movie, it’s lackluster at best, if you read the book. If you didn’t read the book, if you didn’t see the miniseries, than it suffices with a lot of jump scares and random moments that seem horrific, but I found myself laughing more often than not. This is not a scare fest, it’s actually long and boring at times. Oh, and it’s only the first part of 2 movies.

This is not something I’ll revisit. It’s just not that good. I’m not being contrarian, I am just being honest.

You can buy “IT” by Stephen King by clicking here.

You can buy “It” the Mini-series Blu Ray by clicking here.

Did you see “It”? Drop me a comment below.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Alien: Covenant Review

Alien Covenant Movie Poster 
I finally sat down to watch the latest movie in the “Alien” series. “Alien: Covenant” is supposed to be a sequel to the science fiction film from 2012 “Prometheus”. If you saw that one, then you already know how this is going to turn out. Ridley Scott helms the director’s seat for this one, and while I was excited to see it at first glance, it turned out to be a little different than I wanted. In fact, this was not that grand, and unfortunately, the more I think about the movie, the less I like it compared to a lot of the other movies from the past.

“Alien: Covenant” is a movie about a ship that gets stuck on a rescue mission. As they are trying to rescue a ship, they go down to a planet and investigate, only to find out that there’s something disturbing on board, aliens! That’s where the problems begin for me. There are several elements of the movie that make no sense, including the death of someone’s wife, that doesn’t lead to an ultimate revenge. If you recall “Skull Island”, a character loses his platoon, and he vows super revenge, and it goes through the movie, motivating the character. This time around, someone loses their wife, and you just get some odd facial expressions, and that’s about it. That’s not all, the aliens themselves are CG and it looks terrible compared to the people in the movie. I saw this on Blu Ray and it particularly looked bad.

The movie was slow. So slow that I wanted to give up on it. It had several layers, and a nod to Mary Shelley at one point, but it was so tedious that I was bored to death by the time things started to go off the rails. This is a movie that requires your attention, and you have to forgive it for a lot of the plot holes and lackluster writing. However, as far as atmosphere, Scott does a good job of creating a good overall movie that fits within the series. “Alien: Covenant” is not my favorite, it lacks a lot of elements, and it is paced so slow.

This is not a great movie. It’s not a bad movie, but it’s definitely not what you’re going to expect if you’re a fan of the original. I think it’s worth checking out, but as far as the bigger picture is concerned, I’m not a fan of this movie. “Alien: Covenant” is just a slow moving science fiction film, which is not memorable at all. Maybe there’s a silver lining upon further viewings, but honestly, I don’t really want to dig through this movie again, it kind of bored me. It has some good visuals, good gore, interesting plot points and setup, but the follow through and ending just isn’t the same as the original or even as good as “Prometheus” if I’m being really honest.

You can purchase “Alien: Covenant” on Blu Ray by clicking here.

Did you see “Alien: Covenant”? What did you think? Drop me a line.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Kong: Skull Island (2017) Review

Kong: Skull Island 2017 
It has been a long time since I’ve seen a monster movie that was well worth the price of admission. I didn’t even see this movie when it came out in theaters. But after waiting for it to arrive on rentals, I finally decided to bite the bullet. At first glance, this seems like another blow out blockbuster, but there are layers to this movie that make it a lot of fun. Note, I said fun. If you apply logic, even though the movie begs you to do so, you’re going to be soured fast. I was soured by the logical problems associated with this film, but I did like the larger grandiose display. In fact, it’s a fun ride, with a lot of modern elements to cheer, more than the lack of logic, but hey, that’s Hollywood for ya, right? It’s an interesting romp that deals with a few key historical points, and lots of great editing. “Kong: Skull Island” could very well be the best monster, science fiction movie I’ve seen this year. But that’s not saying much, right?

The movie starts off with some killer editing. Richard Pearson’s editing job is great here. Larry Fong’s cinematography is great, and the music works to set up cues that are right for the time frame. There are some great moments here, and a bit of history to boot. The movie starts off in 1944, at the end of the second World War, and you get to see a group of individuals that are going to an uncharted island. They are going for a variety of reasons, but no one mentions Kong, until he shows up and strikes down the United States Military. Samuel L. Jackson, John Goodman, and Tom Hiddleston round out the major actors, and I didn’t even recognize Brie Larson at first glance. John C. Reilly also shows up, but you first get sequencing that sends the military group with scientists to the island to explore, chart, and map the terrain. This prompts Kong to show up and start defending his territory, and a revenge plot begins with Samuel L. Jackson becoming a badass throughout the movie.

The plot is simple, and the movie starts to make little sense as it goes through. I started to question the logic mid-way through the movie, but appreciated the spectacle. You cannot apply logical questions to the movie, because you’ll run yourself ragged. I did appreciate the visual design flow, and the beauty of the shots, as well as the great after effects work, green screen work, and practical effects that were used. A lot of work went into presenting the beauty of the Island, and the insanity that comes with fighting off a monster. I loved it.

The movie is not a bad one. I liked the flow, the action, and the dialogue at times. The editing really got to me. As a History major, I really loved the way the juxtaposition of real military elements were mixed in with the fantasy of Kong, and the ethos that went back to the classic monster movies. You may be a fan of the original King Kong movies, but this is definitely an upgraded, up to date, and inspired movie with a lot to offer. It’s swift, it’s slick, and it certainly has a lot of great action, although, it is missing that “Scary”, “horror” element that sunk into latter Kong movies. It’s a nice science fiction, monster movie, throwback, with a great visual design flow. I liked it, but probably won’t spend too much time watching it again and again like I did the originals.

You can buy “Kong: Skull Island”on Blu Ray by clicking here.

Did you see “Kong: Skull Island”? What did you think? Drop me a comment below.

Monday, July 31, 2017

Get Out Review

Get Out (2017) Poster
I heard a lot of great things about “Get Out”, but I don’t really go to the movies anymore. So I waited, and I waited, and finally caved in and got the blu ray edition of this movie. I was surprised by how many elements of horror are found in this film, yet it’s not really “horror” in the traditional sense. I was waiting for the horror elements to be amped up, but they never were. This is more of a thriller to me, but that’s just my opinion based on mulling this over a long time now. With that in mind, let’s take into consider what “Get Out” is, and isn’t, and what I feel about the movie after seeing it, digesting it, and really considering the hype that has this getting a 99 percent on rotten tomatoes right now.

Jordan Peele is known for his comedy, and this movie is not a comedy. The movie dives deeper into the issues of xenophobia than any other movie in the genre that I’ve seen in a while. In fact, you’re going to get hit hard with a racial element as Allison William’s character is taking her new boyfriend to meet her parents, and the family that lives in what I can only assume is a massive mansion. Well it is, but come on. Anyways, Chris Washington and Rose Armitage visit an all white community and it appears that Chris is the odd man out, having to put aside the notion that he’s not fitting in, cause he’s black. This comes through in a very specific manner that I’ve felt all of my life, even now in the Midwest. I’m distinctly Mexican, and feel the pressure of who I am whenever I’m surrounded by this type of situation.

The movie continues, with our main character finding out that people are getting hypnotized in a way, and the movie continues to reveal the sinister plot. Mix elements of “Parts: The Clonus Project”, “The Island”, and “Extreme Measures”, and you start to see where Peele may have found inspiration to create a racially divided movie. There are even a few nods to “Gattaca” if you reach hard enough, with an element of bio-engineering for good measure.

Where’s the gore? That’s what I was wondering as I watched this movie progress. Yes, it’s a tightening gyre of sorts, but the 103 minutes really is more of a cinematic treat, then it is a horror fueled masterpiece. The social commentary that underlines the movie’s key reveals, and points, alongside the third and final acts really pushes the boundaries of suspense and thriller genres, not horror. The lack of gore, and the placement of characters makes this a great follow through, but at the end of the day, it falls flat for me.

Is this a horror movie? Not really. It’s more of a thriller with some horror elements. The lack of gore is one thing, but there’s something else missing, and I can’t really put my finger on it. However, the movie is a good one, for what it is, and a surprisingly well paced, interesting movie that pushes a lot of buttons, but gives you a little too much “rose” at times. The comic relief was good though, and for that, I’m going to recommend this one. It’s a somewhat well balanced, interesting take on the genre, but it’s not as “horror” fueled as some may want to say. I could go deeper into this movie, but honestly, I don’t have much more to say than what many other better writers have already said. Visually it’s good, the plot moves swiftly, and it’s well edited, and thought out at times. I liked it, and perhaps that’s the most important aspect of this movie. "Get Out" has a nice punch, and a great idea, with less horror and more suspense and thriller elements than you can shake a fist at. It's like watching modern day "Twilight Zone" in some ways.

I give this movie a 4 out of 5 rating, and recommend it.

You can purchase “Get Out” on Blu Ray by clicking here.

Did you see “Get Out”? Did you like it? Drop me a line in the comments.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Split Review

Split Movie Poster
What’s this? A new review? Yeah, you’re GD right! I’m back to business after a long time away, and we’re going to go absolutely crazy with movie reviews and random B.S. Here we go, an M. Night Shyamalan flick to start off the new era of this blog. “Split” is a movie that came out in 2016, and today we’re going to look at it from my perspective, as I didn’t think it was as bad as some people will have you believe. Twists and turns and all!

M. Night Shyamalan returned to form in this movie, and it’s fascinating how it all works out. The movie is simple enough, it’s a movie about a serial killer that has split personalities. He kidnaps three teenagers and goes through different personalities, and becomes a fascinating exploration of control, kidnapping and so much more. It’s fascinating that this is the comeback of M. Night Shyamalan because he was able to gain the upper hand on a $9 million budget! This movie went on to make $276 million at the box office, so you know there’s more coming. Either way, this movie was one hell of a thriller.

The movie features James McAvoy as 23 different personalities, and it’s a fascinating push forward. I was absolutely blown away by how he acted in this movie. The rest is your run of the mill kidnapping and horror tale, with flashes of the past from one of the young women that has been kidnapped. There are some great moments of horror, including flash backs to molestation, and other innuendos. There’s some insane elements too, with a point a “monster” comes out. There was no major twist, like I was told. There was a nod to another movie, but overall, this film goes straight through between thriller and horror. It’s a fascinating film to go through.

“Split” takes you through a horror fueled closet of sorts. McAvoy is great here, and the movie is simple, and runs through in a very narrow, linear path. It’s predicable, but looks great, and there are moments of true horror, and suspense at times. M. Night Shyamalan really rests on his visual spectrum, and does so with a limited budget and great editing. I loved it. However, I won’t watch it again, as it wasn’t a classic to me. There were a few moments where I felt it was too predictable, however, what he does well is the same kind of momentum that made Hitchcock’s films so suspenseful at the time.

I give M. Night Shyamalan’s “Split” a 4 out of 5.

You can pick up your copy of “Split” on blu ray by clicking here.

Did you see “Split”? Did you like it? Sound off in the comments, let me know.

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