2006’s Slither does something very difficult: it manages to mix horror with Science Fiction (Sci-Fi), and adding a large dose of comedy…and gets it all right. I’ve reviewed the move in the past (here is the original, tiny write up: Slither 2006). It was so good, that I decided we should watch it again, and maybe put a little more effort in the write up this time.
Starring Canada’s own (hell,we were in the same high school at the same time), Nathan Fillion (Firefly anyone?), as Chief of Police of the town of Wheelsy, South Carolina, where a meteorite crashed to earth, carrying an alien life form. Shortly after it crashes to earth, local, well to do guy, Grant Grant (played by Michael Rooker), gets taken over by the creature after poking at the gelatinous, pulsing mass in the nearby woods (after almost, but not quite cheating on his wife). Soon Grant starts craving fresh, raw meat, and also starts mutating. When Grant’s lovely wife, Starla (Elizabeth Banks), see’s a misshapen Grant, he explains he had a reaction to a bee sting. Well, soon other things start happening, including the disappearance of neighbourhood pets, as well as Barbara, a local drinkin’ floozy…
Well, you see, Grant is now the host of an alien intelligence who spreads through taking over individuals, either through assimilation or through infection via a parasitic worm/slug like form. The creature can also use a life form as a host to breed the aforementioned worms/slugs…and it does – boy does it ever. Of course this turns in to a battle of a few against a lot, and is tense and action packed… as well as a lot of always cool grossness. The creature design is fantastic, and the whole cast does a great job in creating what feels like a heartfelt homage to the alien invasion/creature films of the 1950’s and 1960’s. This is a great Sci-Fi/Horror/comedy that I strongly suggest you check out.
Here is the trailer:
How have I not seen High Plains Drifter before this? this 1973 Western is a gritty, dark tale. A tale of deceit, of murder and vengeance. Heck, it’s even a ghost story. This is a very unique film, and a very good one at that. A drifter enters a small town, apparently looking for a drink, a shave, a bath and a bed. Once there he is confronted by three guys, Company men, they are called. In defense he kills all three. The local sheriff tells him they were known to be trouble and that he didn’t have to worry about charges. Heck, the sheriff would like to hire him to protect the town from three gun fighters, just released from jail that will most likely be coming back to the town to seek vengeance for their incarceration. The stranger, played by Clint Eastwood, at first declines, but when the sheriff offers him “anything he wants,” he accepts the job, and goes about making big changes to the town. These changes cause some of the town to question the decision to put him in charge of the town’s defense. The stranger is also troubled by dreams, dreams of the town’s Marshal being whipped to death by the men who he is hired to protect the town. While the murder is taking place, the people of the town stand by and do nothing to stop it. Is it a dream? Or are these memories? It seems pretty obvious to me. The stranger gets the town busy making changes. He run drills simulating an attack and has the town folk put up resistance, preparing them for the inevitable attack that is to come. He also orders unusual things to be done, like painting the town red, and having the towns people tear apart a livery barn to build picnic tables an such… The business men of the town are really questioning their initial decision to hire this stranger. So much so that they try to kill him themselves… Yeah, good luck boys. When the attack comes, the towns people’s weak attempts at fighting off the gun men come to little, and eventually (hell, pretty damned quickly), they have the upper hand, and have gathered the remaining towns folk together in the saloon. Well, this isn’t over folks – they still have to deal with the Stranger…
Okay, let’s not give it all away. I will say that this is a creepy, dark Western. It’s also one of the best Westerns I have ever seen. Actually this is just a really good movie, chock full of darkness and hidden meanings. Heck, it’s a Western and a Ghost story, and it does both great. For the first movie of Eastwood Week, I have to say it’s an incredible start. Check out the trailer below, and then immediately go find yourself a copy and watch it today!
A true crime author moves his family into a home where an unsolved horrific multiple murder took place and finds a stash of 8mm home movies in the attic, he believes he’s found evidence of a serial killer going all the way back to the 1960s. Ethan Hawke plays Ellison Oswalt, a famous (though his fame is fading) true crime writer who has moved his family into the home where a grisly multiple murder happened. The movie actually opens with what appears to be grainy, home movie video (or film) of the crime that happened in this very home. Now, he hasn’t told his wife or young family that a murder happened here… You see, he’s trying to write his next big (and hopefully biggest yet), book and perhaps living in the house of the crime he wants to write about may provide that inspiration. Late one night, while investigating some nocturnal noises, Ellison finds himself in the attic where he finds a stash of 8mm home movies, and a projector. Over the next few weeks/months he reviews these movies… only to be led to believe he has stumbled upon the proof of a previously unknown serial killer with crimes that go back to the 1960s. Trying to get information about the crime that happened from the local chief of police isn’t going to be easy as he isn’t a fan of Ellison’s work, as it often makes the police looked like buffoons. Luckily he is able to get an inside to the police by befriending one of the newer Deputies, who happens to be a big fan of Ellison’s. Uncovering proof of other unsolved murders which seem to tie in with the scenes found on the movies he discovered in his attic. He also enlists the help of a Professor Jonas (Vincent D’Onofrio), as there are similar symbols left at the scenes of each crime scene. The more Ellison investigates, the weirder and deeper the weirdness grows. Now his own kids are seeing and doing the unexplained…
Damn this is a good, creepy horror movie. Hell, it even includes what I would condiser a half-decent twist! I find that the movie managed to create and sustain a level of suspense (and aforementioned creepiness) that is rare lately. Also, it’s nice o see Ethan Hawke in a movie, as I always enjoyed his acting.
So, check out Sinister if you are looking for a better than your run of the mill suspenseful horror flick. Check out the trailer blow, folks:
30 Days of Night tells the tale of a Vampire outbreak in the little Alaskan town of Barrow, during the 30 day polar Night (in the Arctic, there is a period each Winter where the sun sets and does not rise again for 30 days, due to the axial tilt of the planet Earth). A great time for light fearing creatures of the night. Just before the beginning of the long night, strange things start to happen. Peoples cell phones are going missing, and all means of escape from town are either vandalized or destroyed (including dog sled). Once the night hits, it gets weirder when the town’s power is cut. Investigating, the Sheriff, Eben Oleson (Josh Hartnett), discovers that the crew at the power plant have been brutally murdered and the plant vandalized. You see, the Vampires have planned for this night… This is going to be a gory, un-dead versus the unsuspecting soft, humans. Of course there is the hiding to stay safe while one by one the survivors numbers shrink situation – like there is in almost all these movies.
These are dark, dirty, evil vampires. They seem much closer to a complete, separate species than just turned, ancient humans. That said, these Vampires can turn humans into Vampires also, but I did get the feeling that some of them may have been old, greasy dirty powerful killer hominids. I thought it was an interesting take (especially the use of a separate Vampire language). This is not a perfect movie, but it is an enjoyable, action and gore filled bloodfest that I thoroughly enjoyed. Have I seen better Vampire movies? Sure, but I would watch this again and not feel like I wasted my time. Check out the trailer below and decide for yourself if this movie is for you:
A gritty, dark Vampire movie that tells the tale of Caleb Colson (Adrian Pasdar), a small town young man who meets an attractive woman one night and offers her a ride home one late night. Along t he way, insisting on a kiss from her before he drives her home. She kisses him, but also leaves him with a bite on his neck, shortly before she jumps out of his truck and takes off running (home, I guess).
Soon Caleb is struggling , stumbling home in the early daylight hours, smoke billowing from his exposed skin. Spotted by his little sister and father before he arrives at their home, all of a sudden a blacked out recreational vehicle (and RV) drives up and someone quickly scoops him up. Who’s inside the RV but a bunch of bad ass vampires, debating on how to kill Caleb… until the girl that bit him reveals that while she bit him, she did not bleed him, meaning that he too, is now a Vampire, and pleads for his life. They vamps decide to give him a little time to prove himself. Unfortunately he’s not a killer at heart and has trouble doing the deeds that a Vampire must do. The girl that turned him feeds him to keep him alive, though this is something that cannot go on… Failing test after test, the other Vampires want to get rid of Caleb, though he does manage to buy himself a little time by orchestrating a daring escape while the crew of Vamps are holed up and under fire from the police. An incident later leaves Caleb with a decision between the Vampires and his own family… A choice Caleb has no real trouble deciding. Of course the Vampires won’t let someone leave quietly, right?
This is a dam fine Vampire movie. Unfortunately whit was released around the time of the Lost Boys (also a good Vampire movie – but not as good), and did poorly at the box office, despite good reviews. Great performances from leathery tough guy, Lance Henriksen and then up and comer Bill Paxton are just the cherry on the top. If you haven’t seen this movie (and are into Vampire movies), then you must, and if it’s been a while since you have seen it, then it deserves a re-watch.
Check out the trailer below:
Suspiria is a 1977 horror movie directed by the Italian master, Dario Argento, and the fist of a trilogy of horror. And it’s weird… and loud.
Suspiria tells the story of America ballet dance student, Suzy Bannion who takes up study at a prestigious dance study in Germany, but quickly discovers that things are not what they may seem. Upon arriving at the school on a ridiculously rainy night, only to see an upset girl fleeing and mumbling something about a secret and a flower – and then to be refused entrance. Next we see a girl die in an artistically weird stabbing… The next day Suzy manages to get to the school, meets Madame Blanc and Miss Tanner, and is shown around the school and introduced to the girls in the locker room. Suzy is told that the room she was to stay in is not ready and that she will stay with another student for the time being. At the school, Suzy has a fainting spell (after a weird encounter with the school’s cook)… later she seems okay…
Alright: All I am doing is describing what happened in the movie – and that is a silly thing to do. It’s al artistic Italian Horror by the master Dario Argento and it is about a Ballet School run by witches…
Argento manages to create a creepy, artistic weird horror flick of sorts that keeps you watching. The strong uses of colour is very jarring as well as is the cacophonous soundtrack which built up so much tension in me that I almost felt nauseous. Seriously, I have never had a soundtrack for a film affect me so… and it was loud. This is a trippy experience of a film and definitely bot for everyone. If you have an open mind (and not overly sensitive ears) , then this will be a memorable watch. Will you like it? Many won’t – I did, but with reservations. You check it out and tell me what you think. Here’s the trailer:
When 1974’s horror movie, It’s Alive was released, there was the creepiest commercial for the movie where you see a baby carriage, and hear what appears to be a normal baby cry…but as the camera pans around the baby carriage, you see a big monster hand coming out from inside the pram… Well that commercial used to scare the living crap out of me… seriously (hey, I was 4 or 5 at the time). Well, today I finally faced down that fear and watched the movie.
Check out that scary (for a 4 or 5 year old) TV spot here:
It’s Alive tells the tale of a couple, Frank and Lenore Davis (John Ryan and Sharon Farrell), who give birth to a child that is nothing short of a monster. The initial birth is a little tough, as the baby is larger than a normal baby, but the doctor is still confident is all right… Next thing you know the delivery room is full of the dead or dying bodies of the doctors an nurses that were assisting in the birth… and a monster baby is on the loose in the city of Los Angeles.
Dad wants the baby dead because it’s an abomination who’s existence has caused the loss of his job, and the ruination of his family. The big drug companies want the baby dead in the off chance he’s a by product of there chemicals. And the police want the baby dead… because it’s killing people. The only one that seems not to want the baby dead is the mother… at first, at least.
This is definitely a creepy movie, and reasonable well done, if a little slow. Having been as scared as I was of the damned commercial as a child, I do wish the movie was scarier than it is, though I am happy that it doesn’t totally suck. An interesting concept and if the idea sounds like something that you’d like, then definitely watch it.
Check out the trailer below and decide for yourself:
1994’s epic movie, Pulp Fiction, is a crazy, head spinning movie that just doesn’t give you a chance to take a breath. Like almost all Tarantino movies, it has a cast that is virtually a who’ who of Hollywood (as of 1994).
Pulp Fiction is a homage to the crazy B-Movies of the 60’s and 70’s, right down to the out of order timeline of events in the film. You’ve got a couple of thugs, or muscle for a Mobster by the name of Marcel, Vincent Vega (John Travolta), and Jules Winfield (Samuel L. Jackson), who among other jobs, are sent to collect a briefcase with…something in it, from some young guys, who apparently believe Marcel is a bitch (watch the movie…). Things go wrong and things get messy.
We also have a sub story about a boxer, Butch Coolidge (Bruce Willis), who’s been paid heavily by none other than non-bitch Marcel, to take a dive in his upcoming fight.. yeah, things go wrong, and Butch and his weird and annoying French girlfriend are on the run. Later, Butch and Marcel end up captives to some hillbilly homosexual sadist rapists. Things get crazy again. Release the Gimp. and in another segment, Butch surprises Vincent… with deadly results.
We also have Vincent, charged with keeping Marcel’s wife, Mia (Uma Thurman), entertained while Marcel is away. The two end up at a cool, over the top, 50’s style diner. There’s some talk of a $5 milk shake and a great dance off… and then later, back at Marcel’s and Mia’s things get crazy, Mia ends up almost dead, rushed to Vincent’s heroin dealer’s house with a syringe of adrenalin sticking out of her chest.
Somewhere in the middle, a crazy criminal couple (Tim Roth and Amanda Plummer) decide they want to rob the restaurant where Vincent and Jules are chilling out in. Things get intese this time, with Jules and holding a gun to Roth’s neck and explaining the deal to him…
Damn this movie is cool – awesome and out of sight. Some people (my wonderful wife included), do not like the fact that the story line is not linear, but I think that’s part of what makes the movie as great as it is. Should you watch this film? Yes, many times.
Check out the trailer below:
True Romance is a crazy, wild ride of a movie. Written by Quentin Tarantino, and starring Christian Slater as Clarence Worley and Patricia Arquette as Alabama Whitman, a young couple who meet at a Sonny Chiba triple play at a theatre in Detroit. They hit off real good, have dinner and then both end up at Clarence’s apartment, having sex. Alabama then admits she’s a hooker hired by his boss, to help him blow off some steam. She also admits that she’s managed to fall in love with him over the course of the evening. This is fortunate, as apparently Clarence has fallen in love with her also. Having known each other for a whole night, they do the logical thing and get married. Now Clarence has to deal with Alabama’s Pimp, Drexl (Gary Oldman). What confronting the pimp, and after a ruckus, and a visit from Clarence’s muse/alter ego/imaginary friend in his head, Drexl ends up dead, and Clarence accidentally ends up with a suitcase full of cocaine. The newly webs hatch a plan to sell the cocaine and restart their lives somewhere warm… Well, the coke was the Mobs, and soon the two are being tracked down by some unsavoury characters, one being the always awesome Christopher Walken as gangster Vincenzo Coccotti. Before the duo leave Detroit for California, they stop by Clarence’s estranged fathers, a police officer by the name of Clifford, played by Dennis Hopper a Detroit police officer, to find out what the police believe the motive for Drexl’s murder. After they leave, Coccotti and his crew end up at Cliffords to drill him on the location of Clarence and Alabama… A great exchange between two great actors happens…only one survives.
Off to Cali, the dynamic duo meet up with an old friends of Clarence, who begrudgingly agrees to help him sell the cocaine to a director he kind of knows, using a go between, played by Bronson Pinchot. Things go wrong, cops get involved, a meeting happend and everything goes to crap…
This movie is crazy and cool – crazy cool? Yeah. Unlike the Kill Bill movies (and the others I will be reviewing), this is written by Tarantino, but directed by Tony Scott, and therefore has a different feeling than Tanatino directed films – but don’t think that is a bad thing, it’s just different. This is a great film and deserves to be watched.
Check out the trailer:
When we finished Quentin Tarantino’s 2003 movie, Kill Bill Volume 1, Bill (played by David Caradine) was still alive… This pretty much guaranteed us a Volume 2.
Volume 2, released in early 2004, opens with a flash beck to Bill shooting Uma Thurman’s character, The Bride, and leaving her, presumably, for dead on the floor of a small church. Then we see The Bride herself, driving, recounting what happened in Volume 1, and then calmly letting us know that she is going to kill Bill. Soon we see Bill, speaking to his brother,Budd (played by Michael Madsen), himself a former Deadly Viper, warning him that The Bride is most likely on her way to kill him. Budd, who now spends his time working as a bouncer in a titty bar, explains that they all deserve any kind of vengeance that the Bride may bestow upon them, for what they did to her. Later, The Bride, expecting to ambush Budd, end up on the wrong side of a 12 gauge shotgun packed full of rock salt. Incapacitated, Budd buries her alive, in a cemetery, and calls fellow Viper, Elle Driver (played by Daryl Hannah), bragging of his deed, and offering up The Bride’s Hanzo sword to her for a cool million dollars – an offer she snaps at. Meanwhile, we flashback to The Bride…who flashes back to her martial arts training at the hands of a merciless master by the name of Pai Mei (Gordon Liu). We see a young Bride as she develops her techniques through repetition and the seeming heartlessness of her master. Eventually it is obvious that she has won his respect. Now we flashback to the present, with the Bride using one of the many techniques taught to her by Pai Mei to escape. Meanwhile, back at Budd’s trailer, Elle has shown up to get the sword. Providing Budd a suitcase full of cash (a million dollars, I presume), she inspects the weapon while Budd starts grabbing handfuls of cash out of the suitcase… Only to find a surprise – a deadly surprise, waits for him in all that cash. Now with Budd out of the way, The Bride has made her way back to Budd’s place to find Elle – which is good, because she too was on the Bride’s list of those that have to die… A great sword fight breaks out, and along the way we discover that Elle, who also was sent to learn under Pai Mei, had killed the old master by poisoning his meal. We also lean that the Master had plucked one of Ell’s eyes out during her training for being insubordinate to the old man. Enrages, The Bride takes instant justice by relieving Elle of her remaining eye…
Now on to Bill… The Bride, now referred to as Beatrix, has tracked Bill to Mexico. Meeting an elderly, dirt bag of a gentleman by the name of Esteban Vihaio, who tells her Bill’s location, because he believes Bill would want him to. Making it to Bill’s, she receives a shocks when she discovers some interesting personal info…and a dart of truth serum to the neck. More flashbacks and some serious talking, and then battle… awesome battle.
You know the name of the movies, so you figure out what the outcome is (watch the movies if you haven’t already). These two movies were meant to be released as a single movie, but the run time would be over 4 hours so they were broken into two. Watch both back to back for the original intended experience, The Kill Bill movies are fantastic and you should watch them.
Check out the trailer below:
Quentin Tarantino’s 2003 movie, Kill Bill Volume 1 tells the story of “The Bride” (played by Uma Thurman), a former member of an assassination team known as the Deadly Vipers, and her journey of revenge against her former fellow assassins, and Bill, her former master and leader of the Deadly Vipers, for attacking and massacring her wedding party and leaving her for dead during a wedding rehearsal.
Thurman’s character, in this iteration of the Kill Bill Saga is known simply as the Bride. Waking from a coma, four years after Bill left her for dead on the floor of a church, he Bride takes little time to start her path of vengeance… starting right there in the hospital,taking out the redneck that paid a greaseball orderly to have sex with her… Oh, and she takes out that orderly, quickly. also… and takes off with his ridiculous, bright yellow truck, labeled “The Pussy Wagon”. First stop. after the killing in the hospital is to the home of Vernita Green (played by Vivica A. Fox). The two do epic battle with a short break in the middle when Vernita’s young daughter comes home. Soon the action restarts, and ends with The Bride heading to her next destination/victim, O-Ren Ishii (played by Lucy Liu), a former Viper and now leader of a consortium of Yakuza families. A flashback shows us just how she won the respect and fear of the male dominated Yakuza families. When The Bride shows up in Japan, she defeats what seems to be an almost endless number of minions, known as the Crazy 88s. The scene ends with a very stylistically shot scene with The Bride and Oren in a samurai sword battle. Pretty evenly matched… but you know who is going to win, and she does so in a spectacular fashion. Upon leaving, she leaves one former member of the Deadly Vipers alive: Sophie Fatale, (played by Julie Dreyfus), is left alive, albeit minus one arm, to send the message that The Bride is coming for him. Mixed up in the story ids a sub story, where the Bride travels to the island of Okinawa, and convinces the esteemed, but now retired sword smith, Hattori Hanzō (played by the awesome Sonny Chiba), to craft her a samurai sword. At first he declines… that is until she tells him the sword is to be used to Kill Bill. Now he’s in…
Kill Bill Vol. 1 is a little disjointed. Like Tarantino’s other masterpiece, Pulp Fiction, it has a disjointed timeline – the scenes are just not in linear order. I believe this may be in homage to the cheezy B-Movies of the past where projectionists would sometimes play the reels out of order, either due to mis-labeling or just carelessness. Either way, I like it.
Watch Kill Bill Volume 1… and if you’ve seen it, watch it again.
Check out the trailer below:
Telling the story of a female gang, know as the Dagger Debs (a sub gang made of the girl friends of The Daggers, and all male gang), run by tough chick Lace (played by Robbie Lee) who rules her gang through fear. Soon a small time confrontation in a diner ends with a new member of the gang, Maggie, who impressed Lace with her whip like skills and lack of fear.Lace and Maggie grow closer, which get’s fellow gang member, Patch (played by Monica Gayle), jealous as Maggie seems to be displacing her as Lace’s right hand girl. At the same time, Dominic (played by Asher Brauner), leader of the Daggers and Lace’s man takes a fancy to Maggie, forcing himself on her in her home one night. Seeing an opportunity, Patch starts laying the seeds of dissent by planting the idea that Maggie is actually after Dominic.
After a raid on a rival gang at a roller rink goes bad, and Dominic is killed, and Lace ends up in the hospital, Maggie decides that the remaining Daggers are just too weak to follow, she brings the girls to a “Black” neighbourhood and meets up with some militaristic woman gang members whom they team up with to take out that rival gang. Successfully destroying the rivals, now a conflict breaks out between Lace and Maggie. Believing Maggie is trying to usurp her as leader, and that she was trying to take Dominic (before he died of course), Maggie and Lace engage in a switchblade fight…
Okay, enough… I actually had fun watching this terrible movie. There are very few redeeming qualities to this film, or even this genre of film, but it is damn fun. The incredible cheeziness of the script, acting and overall concept makes this an almost must watch!
Check out the trailer below and make your own decision.
So, I remember when this movie first came out back in the day and thinking “that looks like crap” and never bothering to watch it. Well this week my movie watching buddy suggested we watch it, and while not totally enthused, I agreed. I’m glad I did.
Tank Girl is a 1995 post apocalypse Sci-Fi movie based on a comic of the same name. Taking place in the year 2033, 11 years after a comet hit the Earth devastating the environment. One large, evil company, Water and Power (WP) controls the World’s water supply. They are run by the equally evil Kesslee (played very well by Malcolm McDowell. Rebecca, (Tank Girl, played by Lori Petty) is a crazy ass resistance member that survive off of water they extract themselves – something very much against WP’s company policy. In a raid, most of Tank Girl’s compatriots are killed, while her young friend, Sam (Stacy Linn Ramsower), is captured. After managing on killing a good number of WP’s men, Tank Girl is also taken into captivity. Impressed by her ability to kill so many of his top men, Kesslee offer’s her a job. Refusing, Kesslee put her through a series of tortures in order to break her will… Good luck with that.
When not being tortured, she is forced to work gruelling shifts for WP. There she meets Jet Girl (played by Naomi Watts), a girl with talent, butt very timid. They get to know each other when Tank Girl saves Jet Girl from the advances of a guard. Eventually Tank Girl escapes (with a tank – go figure), and goes off to look for her friend Sam (now forced into servitude at a brothel). Along the way she meets he Rippers – mutant humanoids (and something else – watch the movie to figure that out) that fight WP at every step. Eventually Tank Girl gains the trust of the Rippers (who are actually quite civilized in their own way), and she and the Rippers take on WP. Pretty vague description… but that is on purpose.
Tank Girl successfully combines action, Science Fiction and comedy all together into a goulash of awesomeness that I completely did not expect. This movie had my attention from the beginning, and while completely weird, is also completely awesome. I heartily suggest you watch this crazy movie.
Check out the trailer below:
So, there’s report of trouble on a planet that is a social experiment with the Federation,Klingons and the Romulans – they are trying to find out if we can all live happily together. Some charismatic cult leader has taken over the place and the only folks who are close enough to do anything about it…are the the crew of the Enterprise. They show up and are quickly captured. Some are sort of hypnotized to follow their leader – a Vulcan by the name of Sybok, (played by Laurence Luckinbill), Spock’s half-brother, who is offering freedom from fear and pain, and on mission to the center of the Galaxy – to see the face of…I dunno’… GOD? Yeah, and there is a Klingon Captain that wants to make his points by killing the infamous Kirk. Oh… I can’t continue.
UGH!!! I really disliked this freakin’ movie. Go ahead an watch it if you need to. I liked this movie more when I first watched it, but really didn’t like it much then. I don’t need my Sci-Fi heroes looking for God, and Shatner is NOT A GOOD WRITER/DIRECTOR. I like William Shatner a lot and this should be his “Popeye.”
Here is the trailer for this terrible Trek movie:
Hmmm… Where to start? Taking place almost immediately after the last movie, The Search For Spock, The Voyage Home has the crew of the Enterprise heading for Earth to answer for their actions in that past movie.Well, on their way back they get news of an alien probe that has been leaving a trail of destruction while making directly for Earth. Along the way, it is continuously transmitting a strange, seemingly unintelligible signal. Once the probe reaches Earth, it starts directing it’s signal into the depths of the oceans – and not getting any reply, it starts vaporizing said oceans.The crew of the Enterprise, now the crew of a Klingon Bird of Prey are tasked to find a solution to this problem. The still adjusting from returning from the dead Spock does some calculations and figures out that the signal is actually the call of the now (23rd century “now”), extinct Humpback Whale. Figuring that the only way to save the planet is to find some Humpback Whales, the crew decides to travel back in time and gather a few whales. They whip around the sun to travel back in time and end up in 1980’s San Francisco, where they soon discover that their are two Humpbacks at a Sea World like complex. They land the Bird of Prey in Golden Gate Park (thank you Klingon Cloaking device) and head out into the city to look for whales…Oh, and nuclear material…yes, they need nuclear material for the now fried Dilithium crystals. So for the next bit, the crew goes around San Francisco, making stupid mistakes (they are not part of this culture,folks), while trying to round up whales and nuclear materials.
So, typically, Kirk woos a marine biologist who is taking care of the whales in captivity, and one of the other crew gets captured (and injured badly), and there has to be a sneaky rescue…of course.
So the movie is funny in places, serious in others and addresses important environmental and ecological issues. Hell, I know many people who think this is the best Star Trek movie… I’m of the opinion that it is one of (but not THEE), worst Star Trek movies. Just too much “save the world” hippy crap. It’s still fun, just not my favourite.
Check out the trailer below:
Following the awesome Wrath of Khan, 1984’s, the Search For Spock, had a lot to live up to…and didn’t quite reach those lofty goals. Still, after re-watching it for the first time in 25+ years, I have to say that it is better than I remembered.
If you haven’t watched Wrath of Khan then beware, as there will be spoilers, but hell, the movie’s been out for 31 years so tough.
So, in the Wrath of Khan the movie ends with Spock, dead…kind of. They shoot his body off to the newly formed Genesis planet. Soon, McCoy starts acting weird, acting like he’s Spock or something. At the same time, there are some weird things going on on the newly formed Genesis planet, as well as new frictions between the Klingon Empire and the Federation. The Genesis planet, declared off limits to all, holds the key to resurrecting Spock and the crew of the Enterprise needs to get there… They steal Enterprise and head off to the planet. They run into a Klingon Bird of Prey, ready to kick the Enterprise’s ass. A quick battle, a ruse and the death of someone special to Kirk and then a switch-a-roo and the crew of the now wasted enterprise take off in a newly stolen Bird of Prey with a new passenger, (come on, you know the name of the damned movie), a trip to Vulcan and some Psychic surgery.
So, by some considered a crappy Trek movie, and I too used to think this, but after re-watching I have to say it is better than I remember. Also, the great Christopher Lloyd (remember Jim Ignatowski of Taxi or "Doc" Brown from the Back to the Future movies), makes a great Klingon Captain. So, don’t watch this movie expecting greatness, but to be fair I believe it’s not nearly as bad as some think it is. Also – don’t watch this movie as a stand alone movie – watch it if you are going through the movies.
Check out the trailer below:
1993’s Freaked stars William Sadler as Dick Brian, a former child star that, along with a group of compatriots, are turned into mutant freaks by mad scientist/Showman Elijah C. Scruggs (played very well by Randy Quaid), and held captive, along with his other victims turned performers for his own Freak Show. Of course i’s up to them to plot an escape, which leads to a whole new bunch of excitement. Retelling the tale of the incident that left him horribly disfigured and ended his acting career on a daytime talk show hosted by the vacuous Skye Daily (played by Brooke Shields), while in shadow (presumable to hide his horrible disfigurement), the movie is shot as a flashback, and occasionally returning to the present either for a dumb, but funny comment from Skye, or a silly commercial. Quaid’s Scruggs is an awesomely over the top character, and his stable of freaks is truly impressive. I especially enjoyed Mr. T as the Bearded Lady! Special effect makeups are fantastic and completely over the top. The film combines horror with humour very successfully, something that isn’t easy to do.
A silly film that deserves your attention, I heartily suggest this as a watch.
Check out the trailer below:
A generic feeling early 80’s Sci-Fi movie, this is a dark and visually muddy movie. A specialist is sent to a planet where experiments in creating a high protein food source has gone awry when the creature the scientists have created (a mutant, hybrid between human and whatever), goes rogue and starts killing and transforming the crew of the outpost.
The mature creature looks a little like an obese version of the Alien from, well.. Alien, and it’s pre-transformation looks a little like a you might see inhabiting the thermal vents of the Marianas trench. The actors are people I’ve never heard of, there’s a little bit of 80’s breast and that’s it.
I’ve seen worse, but I’ve also seen much better. This movie seems to have a little bit of a cult following. I wonder if that is due to people who saw the movie at a young and impressionable age.
Anyway, I watched it on Netflix.
Here is the trailer:
Wow… I had never heard of the Basket Case movies until my buddy suggested we watch them about a month ago. Well, last night we finished the last of the three movies and I have to say that I was left pleasantly surprised at how much these movies entertained me.
The Basket Case movies tell the story of two Siamese, or co-joined twins, separated in childhood. One twin, Duane Bradley (played hilariously cheezily by Kevin Van Hentenryck) is a fully formed, mostly normal looking guy, but his brother, Belial, is a disgusting blob of flesh with one dangerously powerful arm and, a very strong leg and a disturbingly human face with a mouth full of jagged, dangerous teeth. Belial is a dangerous character who is understandable unbalanced. Spending most of his time in a basket (hence the name of the movies), he and Duane have a psychic bond and can communicate without words). Duane and Belial were separated against their will when children in a horrific home surgery. Now Belial and Duane are looking for revenge on the doctor’s that did the brutal operation. Belial, extracting his revenge – this little guy is a damned efficient killing machine – having killed a large number of people, gets into a scuffle and he and Duane fall out a window together. Apprehended and brought to a hospital, they both escape.
Basket Case 2 picks up where Basket Case left off – now Duane and Bradley find themselves in the home of Granny Ruth (played by Annie Ross), a woman who has taken it upon herself to provide sanctuary for horribly and bizarrely deformed people. The cast of strange creatures is interesting and funny – I thing the creature designer on this film most likely had a great time. This is a place where Belial can feel at home and not have to hide from the world. Duane, though is having a tougher time fitting in, as he feels like the outsider. That said, he manages to fall in love with Granny Ruth’s assistant, Susan (played by Heather Rattray), a seemingly normal young lady – and it seems that she loves Duane, too. Also, Belial finds love himself when he falls for a similarly mutated Eve. Soon Granny Ruth’s sanctuary is threatened by a sleazy reporter and photographer. Duane and Belial decide to organize the ragtag group of mutants into an efficient and deadly defence. After saving the day, Duane and Susan start to get it on… and Duane finds out the real reason Susan stays with Granny Ruth. Duane flips out and goes off the mental deep end (and something happens to Susan)… And the movie ends. Oh, I can’t forget to mention the weirdest love scene ever between two lumps of mutated flesh.
Basket Case 3, starts the moment Basket Case 2 ends. Duane wakes up to find himself in a straight jacket, calling out to whomever claiming that he’s all better now. Granny Ruth enters his padded cell and explains how long he’s been there and why. She also gives him some good news: he’s going to be an uncle, as Belial has impregnated Eve. Eve, being massively mutated, is starting to go into labour, and Granny Ruth is concerned that she may require medical attention. She packs up the entire group of mutants into a school bus and they take off to a sympathetic Doctor referred to as Uncle Hal. Uncle Hal has been taking care of a genius, multi-armed mutant, Little Hal. Duane, still a loose, mildly crazy loose cannon, is trying to escape at any cost. Meanwhile Eve Gives birth to a…a lot of little Belial copies, despite the fact that Belial loses it and attacks Uncle Hal (due to a flashback). Getting the attention of the Sheriff’s daughter, who he stupidly trusts, he soon finds himself behind bars, while the stupid deputy’s decided that they want to capture Belial for a reported $1,000,000 reward offered by a rag newspaper. Yeah, well that doesn’t go very well and one escapes with his life and a basket full of baby Belial looking offspring. The mutants aren’t going to stand for that, and they launch a brazen attack on the jail in order to save the babies. Things get even weirder.
Okay, these are low budget movies that leave a lot to be desired. That said, I really enjoyed them. Duane is an unbelievable silly character that while fake, is super fun to watch. Belial is such a weird character that it’s hard to find him scary, and the gallery of mutants under Granny Ruth’s roof are very… crazy. Still, I really liked these movies – they have a certain charm that is very rare in the horror genre, and if you can suspend your sense of disbelief, you might just have a good time watching these crazy movies.
Fright Night tells the story of Charley Brewster (played by Anton Yelchin, now famous as Chekov from the Star Trek reboot) a teenager living in the suburbs of Las Vegas. Charley discovers that his neighbour, Jerry Dandrige (played by Colin Farrell) is actually a Vampire and must defeat him to save his family and friends.
Initially Charley just thinks Jerry is a normal guy that just moved in next door – that is until former best friend, Ed (played by Christopher Mintz-Plasse) opens his eyes to what is going on around him. Ed and Charley have become distanced and do not hang out any more, but Ed blackmails Charley to come with him to one of there mutual friend’s place to check on him as he seems to have disappeared without a trace. When they get there they find no trace of either their friend or family. It is here where Ed reveals that Charley’s new neighbour is a Vampire – something that Charley refuses to believe. Events at home, between himself and Jerry change his mind when Jerry asks him if he could borrow some beer for an upcoming liaison between himself and a girl – Charley obliges, and notices that Jerry cannot go past the threshold of his open door… Everyone knows a vampire cannot enter a home without being invited.
Soon things ramp up, and Jerry, being a Vampire starts feeding more and more and more people that Charley knows start disappearing. Jerry discovers that Charley has learned his secret and tries to get to Charley and his family, in any way possible. Charley seeks the help of a world famous occult/vampire hunter/Vegas Magician guy, Peter Vincent (played by David Tennant who at first just kicks him out, but eventually looks over a pile of information Charley left behind and realizes Charley is dealing with a real Vampire and decides to help… well, is forced to help when Jerry forces his hand. A note: in the original Fright Night, this character was played by the late and very great Roddy McDowall, and was the host of a late night horror movie show.
What follows is an action packed human’s versus Vampires battle(s) that is actually quite entertaining. There’s a cool battle between Charlie and former buddy, now turned Vampire Ed that in a way made me sympathetic to Ed. The final battle between Charley, Jerry and Jerry’s new brood of freshly changed Vampires is exciting and in a way pays homage to the original.
Is this better than the original? Oh, hell no. Is this movie good? Oh, yes. I found it a fun, entertaining Vampire movie and would not hesitate to recommend it as a watch.
Check out the trailer:
2003’s Texas Chainsaw Massacre (TCM), revisit’s Tobe Hooper’s ground breaking horror classic of (almost) the same name (add “The” to the beginning of the original), and gives it a great, modern refresh.
Inspired very loosely on the horrendous crimes of Ed Gein in 1950’s Wisconsin, TCM tells the story of a group of young 20 somethings on their way to a Lynyrd Skynyrd concert in Dallas. Along the way they stop and pick up a dazed, confused woman who is walking around in the middle of the road by herself, almost unresponsive. They take her into the van in order to get her some help, but in a short time she kills herself using a pistol that she had concealed… Forced to look for help from authorities, they drive into a small town…and perhaps Hell on Earth.
What ensues is a battle between this group of youths and a hillbilly clan that seems un escapable. Call the Sheriff? Sure – too bad he’s mixed right up in this hillbilly killer family. No matter where they turn, the group finds themselves deeper and deeper in crap - One by one, they fall gruesome victims to Leatherface and his family.
If you haven’t seen the original, you can still watch this movie without missing anything, but seeing the original’s stature in the horror world, you would be doing yourself a dis-service. Is this better than the original? Well, it really is good – maybe not as important as the original – but possible as good. Jessica Biel does a great job (and looks great), and the rest of the cast is good to.
Here’s the trailer:
In 2007 Rob Zombie released his remake of the classic, influential 1978 Slasher-Horror film, Halloween. The original starred an unknown actress by the name of Jamie Lee Curtis and the better known Donald Pleasence. Both movies tell the story of Michael Myers – a child who killed his family when he was 10 – now 16 years later, he’s escaped the criminal asylum where he has been held… HE’s heading back home to find his last remaining family member, his sister – oh, and he’s racking up a big body count along the way.
Rob Zombie kept true to the original story, but in my mind created a much more watchable movie. I’m sure much of that is due to the time that has passed since the original was released – hindsight is 20-20 they say.
Now, don’t get me wrong: while I thing the remake is a better movie, I still like the original, and without a doubt the original is a much more important movie – Just not as well made. I feel that the family background of Michael is more fleshed out in the remake, and the acting doesn’t seem as forced… Except in the case of Sheri Moon Zombie’s portrayal of Deborah Myers, Michael’s mother – Sheri can’t act and I really hope Rob Zombie figure this out soon. The always great Malcolm McDowell plays the role of Dr. Samuel Loomis, the role originally played by the late, great Donald Pleasence.
So, as remakes go I say this is definitely a good one. I watched the original and this remake back to back – a fun way to compare.
What do you think?
Here is the Trailer:
And here is the trailer to the original: