Posts Tagged ‘horror’

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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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The January doldrums continue: “The Boy”

January 31, 2016

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Well, it’s still January, and Hollywood is making damn well sure know it by continuing to make us suffer for the unpardonable crime of wanting to see a movie a month after the holiday season. The latest instrument of punishment is The Boy, which, while not a terrible movie, is still pretty bad. And that’s before it becomes outright, pants-crappingly stupid. Wanna hear about it? Oh yes you do…
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All the better to KILL you with, my dear: “The Visit”

January 10, 2016

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Ordinarily, a new movie from M. Night Shyamalan is met with the anticipation reserved for a meteor hurtling toward your home, or the digestion of two day-old sushi. Sure, the spectacle of the carnage to come will no doubt be fascinating, but it’s also probably going to hurt a lot. I’ve already gone into detail about the implosion of Shyamalan’s career, and frankly, so has everyone else. In fact, M. Night Shyamalan’s name is about as synonymous with bad movie as Ed Wood’s. That’s why it’s such a pleasant surprise that his latest film, The Visit, is not only an effective little thriller, but also quite a good movie.
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Because climate change hadn’t screwed us enough already: “Unnatural”

October 25, 2015

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Pretty much anyone who’s not a Republican has come to face the reality that global climate change is upon us. Weather patterns are disrupted, droughts are ravaging several continents, and whole eco-systems are crashing. Assuming that you don’t attribute this to either A) perfectly normal circumstances or B) God’s wrath at us for electing Obama, then it’s time to admit Al Gore may have had a point with that slideshow Of course, this turn of events confronts humanity with a score of very complicated problems: a dwindling global food supply, climate-based migration destabilizing the globe, and—possibly most dire—mutated killer polar bears. Yeah, those are a thing in the case of the B-movie Unnatural.
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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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