May 20, 2016

Movie Review: Money Monster

I have to admit, Money Monster is not a movie that really made sit up say “Wow! I really need to see that!” It didn’t look all that bad, but hardly a must see in this day of flashy blockbusters and trendy indie offerings. It is a movie being marketed on old school star power, a method that doesn’t seem to hold the cache that it once did. There was a time when you could sell a movie based on the names Clooney, Roberts, and Foster, but I think that time is gone. It is not that they are not talented performers that deserve at least some attention, it is just that the movie does not really have a strong hook outside the stars’ names.

May 18, 2016

Movie Review: The Darkness (2016)

Have you heard of this movie The Darkness? I saw the trailer for it a few times, but it is not a movie that ever stuck in my head. Every time it played, it was like I was seeing it for the first time. That is not really a good thing. In any case, it is now in theaters all over the country and I did go and see it. While it is far from the worst thing I have ever seen, I feel like my time may have been better served elsewhere. This is a movie made on a low budget where very little happens by a studio hoping to squeeze out a little money from the unsuspecting audience. I am sure the creative believe in it, but the finished product is just not very good.

May 9, 2016

Bloody Ears, Grateful Heart - Music of Italian Horror Cinema

I think it is fair to judge a man based on how the react to the subject of Italian horror. If they look at you quizzically, feel free to introduce them to some of the craziest cinema known to man. If they look at you in a disgusted or disinterested fashion, feel free to disembowel them on the spot. Now, should their eyes light up with the crazy, well, you have just made a new friend for life. There is nothing like the look, the flavor, the texture of Italian horror and when you find a like minded soul, it can be a like this bit from Step Brothers:

May 5, 2016

Movie Review: The Invitation

I enjoy a well crafted blockbuster just as much as the next guy, however, I think I get more excited for movies like this. You know, the bigger the budget eats, the more it has to play to a wide audience, thus compromising the artistic integrity. No, this is not always true, but when it comes to independently produced features, there tends to be more creative control and a willingness to do things a little differently. That brings us to The Invitation, a wonderfully stylized thriller that takes its time to truly cut loose, it moves its players carefully around the board, and then flips it over, letting the pieces fall where they may.

Movie Review: Green Room

The Green Room hit theaters last week and seems to have barely made a dent when compared to the likes of The Jungle Book and Batman v Superman. While I quite like both of those films, Green Room deserves some of the attention. The movie is an intense blast of tense suspense as we watch our protagonists battle for survival. It is a nail biting sort of film that keeps you involved from the first frame all the way to the end, with plenty of crazy moments to keep you glued to the screen. Now, I get the sad feeling it is not going to be in theaters for very long, so I would recommend you get out there and see it sooner rather than later.

May 1, 2016

Movie Review: Bite

Have you ever heard of a movie called Bite? No? I hadn’t either until maybe two weeks ago when it appeared on the schedule for the local Alamo Drafthouse. I decided to take a peek and see what it was all about. Turns out it is an independent horror film that is said to be very gross and has drawn comparisons to Cronenberg’s The Fly. Now, we all know how good that take on The Fly is, so I could not really buy into the positive comparison. Still, I would be lying if I said I wasn’t curious. Like a soldier with his marching orders, I dutifully went and checked the film out the other night, hoping for the best.

April 27, 2016

Con Trip: Chiller Theatre - Spring 2016

Chiller has come and gone once again. With the first Monster Mania and Chiller under my belt, the 2016 convention season is in full swing. Granted, there are not many more that I will be attending, but it will be hard to get away from them. It seems like there is one every weekend through the next few months. In any case, this one proved to be another successful run. Sure, I only go for a day, but there is only so much I can do before I am completely exhausted. Still, it was a very successful and full day.

April 17, 2016

Movie Review: Demolition (2016)

Demolition is one of those movies that I was interested in but cannot say I had terribly high expectations for it. There was something about it that just seemed different. It was something about how the trailer transitioned from a tragedy to a comedy with a death followed by an annoyance over Peanut M&Ms. There there was the introduction of another woman, via response over said candy annoyance that indicated a potential new romance on the heels of a dead wife. Beyond that, the central character seemed somewhat off. It was interesting enough to draw me in.

April 13, 2016

Movie Review: Darling

The horror genre can be a tough nut to crack. There are so many different varieties, styles, sub genres, places to draw inspiration from, and countless variables to consider. It just may be the one type of film that can come in the most flavors. Do you like your horror with a side of blood? Perhaps you are partial to psychological chillers. Do you prefer serial killers or slashing creatures of the night? Vampires or zombies? The possibilities are endless. With the case of Darling, writer/director Mickey Keating has gone the internalizing route, making a movie that is stripped down to its bare essence with the majority left to the imagination.

April 6, 2016

Movie Review: Trick or Treat (1986)

As you know, it took a long time for me to get into horror movies. In my early days of movie fandom, but before I truly become a horror aficionado, I would peruse the horror racks at the video store where I worked. I would check out the mainstays like A Nightmare on Elm Street and Halloween, but I would also check out things like The Surgeon, The Dentist, and Dr. Giggles. Then there was Trick or Treat. It was an odd little title that liked to trumpet the cameos of Gene Simmons and Ozzy Osbourne, looking for some metal street cred. It is a campy movie that is easy to dismiss, but you shouldn’t.

March 30, 2016

Movie Review: Hardcore Henry

Many years ago, I recall talking with friends about the possibility of and technical difficulties associated with making a movie in the first person. You know, how to progress the narrative, telling the story in real time, and how to hide the camera. It was a conversation that did not last long. Little did we know the style had already been pioneered way back in 1947 in the Raymond Chandler adaptation Lady in the Lake. Granted, I have not seen it, but I am intrigued. Then there is the FPS sequence in the game adaptation Doom, which was pretty well done. Also, in 2013 we got a remake of the mean and nasty Maniac, putting you in the head of a killer. Now have the first first-person action film, Hardcore Henry.

March 27, 2016

Movie Review: Summer Camp (2016)

Ever hear of the movie Summer Camp? I hadn’t either until it recently popped up on the schedule for a local movie theater. The title did not sound all that exciting, so I was going to pass on it, but considering it did not even have a poster, I clicked the link to see if there was a trailer. To my surprise it turned out to be a horror movie. All right, I can get behind this. The trailer seemed decent, with some blood and gore, and an old school feel to the proceedings. So, sure, yeah, I’ll go and check it out. While it is not exactly a shining piece of original film making, it was surprisingly good and I am glad I decided to click the mysterious blank link.

Movie Review: The Bronze

So, did anyone else see The Bronze? I know there are some of you out there, it has made $.5 million as of this writing. The next question would be how many of you would admit to it if you did. It is not a good movie, although, to be fair, I have seen worse this year. On some level I think you could say I enjoyed it. Still, this is not a movie that much effort was made in terms of marketing it. One of my first thoughts as I walked out of the theater was wondering just who this movie was made for. It was an entity without a purpose. A comedy without the drive, a drama without the heart. Why was this made?

Movie Review: 10 Cloverfield Lane

I remember the night the trailer for 10 Cloverfield Lane hit theaters, it was with 13 Hours (a movie I did not see). The only reason I knew was that posts started popping up talking about a Cloverfield sequel. Needless to say, I was excited. How did they make this without anyone knowing? Was it a direct sequel? What is the connection? So many questions based on the fact that a trailer just appeared. I am a big of Cloverfield, so this jumped up my anticipation list. Of course, since then many facts about it have been revealed, but to be honest, most of that was secondary to how good the movie is. Seriously, when it comes down to it, it is always about the movie.