Posts Tagged ‘ghosts’

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CGI Hellhounds Will Eat Your Face (or maybe they won’t): “The Bye Bye Man”

January 18, 2017

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Well, it’s Januarythat time of the year when Hollywood wakes from the booze-and-coke-fueled bender it went on to celebrate the holiday releases, squints bleary-eyed at all of dopes looking to buy movie tickets and mutters, “Oh…are you still here? Um…why don’t you see Rogue One again? Oh, you’ve already seen it six times…okay, how about Passengers? Too rapey? Got it. Um…ah, fuck it, here’s The Bye Bye Man. Watch this schlock and wake me when it’s February.” And that’s how we end up with The Bye Bye Man.
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When raising the dead, just follow the rules: “The Other Side of the Door”

March 3, 2016

 

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Well, it’s Oscar time again, and apparently the movie gods felt the best way to honor this hallowed event was to dump a couple of movies into my local theaters that could only owe their existence to a need to show how great the nominees are by comparison. Or maybe it’s the Universe’s way of saying, Yea, on this weekend as we behold some of the best examples of the art form, know thee that there’s still an awful lot of crap out there, and, hey, let’s face it: they can’t all be Spotlight. So, instead this weekend I took in The Other Side of the Door–which suggests that maybe bringing the dead back to life could be a bad idea.
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Feeling the January-movie blues: “The Forest”

January 9, 2016

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Well, it’s January. Know how I can tell (aside from, you know, being cognizant of the date)? It’s because the new releases in the cinema is stuff like The Forest. Yeah, January is when Hollywood basically says to us, “What? You don’t want to rewatch all the great movies we released for the last two months? You can see The Force Awakens for a fifth time, right? No? Well, fuck it. We shot our load, so here’s a ghost movie with a Game of Thrones actor.” And that’s how movies like The Forest get a theatrical release.
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They’re here…again: “Poltergeist (2015)”

October 4, 2015

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Back in my 2012 review of the original Poltergeist, I noted that that it was somewhat strange that a movie as popular as that one hadn’t yet been remade, repurposed, or otherwise strip-mined. And then I spun a whole bunch of theories why that’s the case that I mostly pulled out of my butt after a couple of Blue Moons. Well…um…(cough)…yeah, I was wrong about that—as you may have surmised from my use of the modifier “original” in the first sentence. Indeed, Poltergeist is the latest attempt by Hollywood to never create anything original ever again.
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Repost: “Poltergeist”

October 4, 2015

Of all the mysteries that surround Poltergeist—the identity of the actual director, the rash of deaths that’s followed the film series—the most confounding may be how dramatically it fell off the cultural radar. Consider the other movies from that summer alone: Conan, and The Thing got remakes, Escape from New York and Rocky III got sequels, Star Trek II got both sequels and a remake, and E.T. is still considered a landmark in summer films. These are signs of the profound effect they had on the cultural landscape. Yet despite Poltergeist’s massive popularity it never went much farther than a couple of lousy, little-known sequels. And yet, the film was a massive hit that had everyone squeaking “They’re here…” for years afterward. So what happened?
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From the mists of time: “Wolfen”

August 3, 2015

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1981 was a banner year for werewolf movies. I’m sure there’s a perfectly fascinating thesis to be written about why this was the case—maybe it was a reaction to beard-friendly ‘70s, maybe it had something to do with cocaine or Vietnam or Reagan or something—whatever the case, 1981 gave us The Howling and An American Werewolf in London released within a few weeks of each other. Both films cannily married cutting-edge special effects and social commentary, and reinvigorated the werewolf genre like nothing else since Lon Chaney Jr. donned the yak-hair 40 years earlier. Also released that summer was Wolfen. You can’t hear things on a blog, but let me assure you, crickets are chirping right now.
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In Hollywood, even the ghosts are famous: “The Black Dahlia Haunting”

October 17, 2014

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The case of the Black Dahlia is one of the most famous unsolved murder cases in history, and it’s not difficult to understand why. The killing of Elizabeth Short, aka The Black Dahlia, was so savage, so sadistic,, so monstrous that it’s nearly impossible to understand what kind of a mind could inflict such horrors on another human being. Even such prolific serial killers as John Wayne Gacy, Jefferey Dahmer, and Ted Bundy didn’t do to their victims what was done to Elizabeth Short (well, not pre-mortem anyway). Surely, a crime this horrific must have some larger implications or hold some larger meaning. James Ellroy expertly crafted the former idea into a great novel about the birth of modern Los Angeles. The low-budget horror flick The Black Dahlia Haunting…uh, well, it has a girl/girl shower scene. Without nudity. (Sigh) okay, let’s just get on with this.
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