Monday, August 23, 2010

NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD

Night of the Living Dead Movie Review

A group of strangers come together in a small country home to try to fight off zombies. This George A Romero film is an absolute horror classic. This film was pretty ahead of its time, and you really feel that here, as there are some truly scary moments, the zombies look pretty cool, and there is quite a bit more gore than was typical for this time (1968).

Here they come

Also out of the ordinary is the fact that our hero, Ben (Duane Jones), is a black guy…

This black guy

...this simply did not happen during this time. The acting goes from pretty good (Judith O’Dea as Barbra) to really bad (Jones), but there is so much to love about this movie that it doesn’t matter. The end of the movie also brings quite a social question into play, something that would become a Romero trademark. This movie is a cult classic, and also a must see for all horror fans, especially zombie movie fans, as this is the one that started it all.

Just because


On A Scale Of One To Ten: 9

Night Of The Living Dead Movie Trailer

HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL

House On Haunted Hill Movie Review

A rich business man (horror legend Vincent Price) is having a haunted house party and offers complete strangers $10,000 each if they can spend an entire night in his house on--you guessed it--Haunted Hill. Many people know the remake of this film, but this is the original (1959), and in my opinion, better of the films. Price is as great as ever here and the supporting cast is pretty good as well, particularly the oft-disturbed Nora Manning (Carolyn Craig), who brings with her, aside from talented acting, quite a set of lungs.

For the Scream fans

This movie was in a few ways ahead of its time, with some pretty creepy moments and a few twists and turns. Of course it also has the terrible dialogue and, at times, drags out quite a bit; however, if you are one who is into much older horror films, this one is a must.

On A Scale Of One To Ten: 7

House On Haunted Hill Movie Trailer

Sunday, August 22, 2010

FEAST

Feast Movie Review

Flesh eating monsters are terrorizing a group of strangers in a bar in the desert. Now the strangers, all odd and interesting characters, must come together to find a way to destroy the monsters and escape danger. This movie is very gory, crude, crass, bloody disgusting…and an absolute riot. It starts off with a hilarious introduction of each character, their role, and their expected life span. From there the gore, killing, and laughing is pretty much non-stop. Balthazar Getty (Where The Day Takes You, Natural Born Killers) does a good job playing the “jackass” of the film and Navi Rawat (Numb3rs, 24) is very memorable as “Heroine”, but it’s Henry Rollins (Wrong Turn 2, The Chase) who steals the show as “Coach”, a pink sweatpants wearing motivational speaker who wants to trick the monsters using psychology.

Sorry I pointed out the pants

There has been a lot of horror/comedy movies come out in the past 6-7 years, and most of them fail to deliver, but not Feast a movie that is among the elite in that category. This movie does not take itself seriously, and neither should you. Just turn on it, sit back, and enjoy the madness.

On A Scale Of One To Ten: 8

Feast Movie Trailer

Thursday, August 19, 2010

LEGION

Legion Movie Review

The angel Michael (Paul Bettany, Kiss Kiss (Bang Bang), Iron Man) comes to Earth to protect an unborn child, the key to the survival of humanity, from being killed by his fellow angels, who are following God’s orders to eliminate man from the world. The premise of this movie is nothing new (for a similar, and far better movie, check out The Prophecy), and little else in the film is either. This is actually a somewhat enjoyable movie for the most part, however, in spite of the largely poor acting (Dennis Quaid even phones this one in). There are some pretty cool scenes and special effects (yes, the ones shown in the television spots and trailers) and the build up is decent.

We're out of strawberry shortcake!

Then you get the final half hour, which is a complete disaster and very poorly executed. Seldom do I say the ending of a movie ruins the rest of it, but in this case, that is exactly what happens. If you must watch this film, I recommend turning it off just after the mother tells the daughter off and imagine to yourself how the rest of the movie will turn out…. whatever you think, it probably will not be as bad as what actually happens.

On A Scale Of One To Ten: 5

Legion Movie Trailer

CREEP

Creep Movie Review

Kate (Franka Potente, Blow, House) is trapped in the London Underground overnight after falling asleep and being locked in. Now she is running from a killer mutant out for blood. This film is strange in that it felt sort of unique but also reminded me of a few other films—Midnight Meat Train and The Descent being the most obvious. It is a fairly decent movie with a bit of gore and suspense but the movie really suffers in that the hero/victim, Kate, is not a likable character at all—which is not to say that Potente did a bad job of acting, it’s just that the character, as she was written, was not likable. Honestly I was waiting the entire movie for her to die.

She doesn't here

The only two characters even remotely likable in the film, in fact, are such small characters that you seldom see them. The mutant is very disturbing and scary looking, which can sometimes be hard to pull off, so credit has to go to the makeup department for that one, as well as the actor (Sean Harris of 24 Hour Party People), whose movements and behaviors added to the creepiness. There is nothing groundbreaking in this film but there is nothing too terribly bad either. It’s actually stronger than a 6 I think, but not quite a 7, and I don't give half stars, so….

On A Scale Of One To Ten: 6

Creep Movie Trailer

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

THE BOOK OF ELI

The Book Of Eli Movie Review

Eli (Denzel Washington, Fallen, John Q) has been walking in a post-apocalyptic world for thirty years and is not heading West, carrying a book that Carnegie (Gary Oldman, Sid and Nancy, The Fifth Element), the leader of a rebuilt city, will do anything to get his hands on. This is a really slick film that is filled with action, good dialogue, and some really good performances, especially from Washington and Oldman. What the book is, and the importance of it, is revealed fairly early in the film, but I will not mention it here (don’t want to spoil anything).

The book

There are good messages abound in this film, that, along with a good feeling, also delivers quite a bit of bloodshed and death. Mila Kunis (That 70’s Show) plays Solara, a girl who has never seen the world outside the rebuilt town and wants to follow Eli, and provides a surprisingly good performance in that role. Also look for an appearance from music legend Tom Waits. There are, unfortunately, a couple questions left unanswered in the film and that takes a bit from it, as does an ending that drags on a bit long (but not before a pretty good twist or two). Still, this is a really good movie that I highly recommend.

On A Scale Of One To Ten: 8

The Book Of Eli Movie Trailer

Saturday, August 14, 2010

INCEPTION (From The Theatre)

Inception Movie Review

A group led by Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio, What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, The Departed) is able to enter peoples’ dreams, planting ideas and stealing information from them. The group is hired by Japanese businessman Saito (Ken Watanabe, Batman Begins, The Last Samurai) to enter the dreams of a rival businessman (Cillian Murphy, 28 Days Later, Red Eye) to plant an idea that will help Saito’s business. Meanwhile, Cobb, who was accused of killing his wife, has trouble telling the difference between reality and the dream world as he struggles to clear his name and return to his kids in America.

Awake or asleep?

This film, from director Christopher Nolan (The Dark Knight, Memento), questions absolutely everything about reality and takes the viewer on a wild ride the entire time. The story is fantastic, the acting is incredible, and many of the views are breathtaking. It can be a lot to follow at times, but as long as you pay attention and have an open mind to what is going on, it is well worth it. This movie clocks in at just shy of two and a half hours, and I really did not want it to end (though when it does, it delivers one of the best endings one could possibly hope for). Other than possibly Tom Berenger, every actor in this movie fits perfectly with their character and everybody brings their A-game. This may be DiCaprio’s finest performance, and that is saying a lot. Joseph Gordon-Levitt (3rd Rock From The Sun, Killshot) may have found his real breakthrough role here, Ellen Page, who was nominated for an Oscar for Juno, delivers a much better performance here than she did in that movie, and Murphy shows a lot more depth than he ever has. I have zero complaints about this film and I walked out of the theatre thinking to myself that I just saw one of the greatest, if not THE greatest, movie ever made.

On A Scale Of One To Ten: 10

Inception Movie Trailer

ALIEN RAIDERS

Alien Raiders Movie Review

A group of apparent robbers invade a supermarket in a small town and start testing the people they have hostage in search of something--of course the mystery of what that something may be is ruined by the movies title. This all leaves you guessing (at least for a small bit) as to who are the good guys and who are the bad guys. This movie has a good amount of blood and death, mainly from the chaos of the team of robbers when they first enter the store, but it slows after that.

Alien raiding

This is really not a bad movie, as it has an interesting concept, but largely poor execution. The acting is pretty bad, with the exception of Carlos Bernard (24) as the leader of the group. There are times--a lot of times--when you scratch your head and wonder if somebody could possibly be as dumb as some of the characters in this film. When you finally get to see the aliens, there really is not much to see, as they are largely hidden in the darkness. It also goes with a “surprise” ending that will likely surprise nobody. The first twenty minutes and the last fifteen minutes of the movie are pretty good, but the middle feels like exactly what it is: filler. Skip this one.

On A Scale Of One To Ten: 5

Alien Raiders Movie Trailer

DEAD AND BREAKFAST

Dead And Breakfast Movie Review

A group of friends on their way to a wedding spend a night at a bed and breakfast in a town that is soon overrun by zombies. To call this a comedy-horror is a bit of a stretch as it actually comes off as a straight comedy that happens to have zombies and a ton of gore. I really wanted to like this movie, but I found myself unable to really get into it. There are some funny moments, such as the running gag of the guy singing throughout, but the comedy gets really old really quick, and you are left with little else.

He's bored too

The acting was pretty disappointing considering some of the people involved (Jeremy Sisto, David Carradine, Diedrich Bader) with the one bright spot being Portia de Rossi (Arrested Development, Better Off Ted), but do not watch this with any expectation of seeing much of her; she’s in the film for about a minute, albeit an explosive minute. Some of the death scenes are really creative, so that is another bright spot here. The directing is really bad and at times you wonder what director Matthew Leutwyler was thinking. This is a so-so film with some really good stuff in it but a lot of really bad stuff to sit through to get to it.

On A Scale Of One To Ten: 6

Dead And Breakfast Movie Trailer

NIGHT OF THE CREEPS

Night Of the Creeps Movie Review

This film starts out on a spaceship where a couple aliens lose a capsule of…something. This lands on Earth in the 1950’s and the contents posses a guy who is eventually stored in a cryogenic chamber. Flash forward to 1986 and a couple nerds trying to join a fraternity accidentally release the man--who still has alien slug-like creatures in his brain--and soon these creatures possess everybody on campus.

Oh boy

Yes, this is a very campy, at times funny, horror film, complete with exploding heads, more horror references than even I could count, zombies, aliens, lots of gore, horrible one-liners, and even a brief clip of Plan 9 From Outer Space, the ultimate campy b-horror film. All in all, this is all pulled off pretty well here. The acting is pretty bad for the most part, as is the dialogue, but that all plays in nicely to this ode to the b-movie. This is not a great movie, but it is good for what it is, and I would recommend it to horror fans, especially those who enjoy the movie Slither.

On A Scale Of One To Ten: 7

Night Of the Creeps Movie Trailer

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

FLIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD

Flight Of The Living Dead Movie Review

A woman injected with a virus to bring the dead back to life in order to fight in wars becomes a flesh eating zombie while being transported on a plane. Soon she is turning passengers and crew into zombies, and all hell breaks loose on the plane. Yes, this could have been called Zombie On A Plane as it plays out pretty much identical to Snakes On A Plane. Despite the obvious rip-off, I liked this movie. This is certainly B-movie garbage, but it works. The zombies look pretty cool (though they make a noise that sounds a lot like a Velociraptor from Jurassic Park) and it is pretty bloody.

Bloody zombie

The CGI are pretty bad a lot of times, so that takes a bit away from it, and most of the acting is horrible as well. But there are a couple good spots in the acting department. Erick Avari (The Mummy, Planet Of The Apes) does a good job as usual, and Kevin J. O’Connor (Lord Of Illusions, Van Helsing) really steals scenes as the criminal being transported. This is a bloody, harmless good time of a movie that is worth a watch.

On A Scale Of One To Ten: 7

Flight Of The Living Dead Movie Trailer