Monday, 11 September 2017

It [IMAX]


Too many characters, too many jump scares and not enough depth, but enough cool moments to let that kind of thing go because it's, y'know, for kids.

Saturday, 9 September 2017

American Made


Hollowed out Scorcese. Fun but ultimately empty with an ending that makes you think 'oh good, it ended.'

Thursday, 7 September 2017

The Hitman's Bodyguard


Too flippant to be a decent action movie and too violent to be a decent comedy.

Logan Lucky


I know that sitting down for ninety minutes, staring at a glowing rectangle requires very little effort on my part but this is by far the most effortless movie viewing I've ever put myself through.

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Tragedy Girls


(Frightfest Day 5)
The American high school slasher fully updated for our modern times, doing away with the usual played out whodunnit plot and instead presenting a pair of murderesses concerned with boosting their social media presence, the upcoming prom and dismemberment. Likeable.

Monday, 28 August 2017

The Terror Of Hallow's Eve


(Frightfest Day 5)
Yo, the eighties called. They want their movie back.

Top Knot Detective


(Frightfest Day 5)
Loving homage to crazed Japanese TV via a mockumentary that is as hilarious as it is balls out insane.

Lowlife


(Frightfest Day 5)
Strong echoes of Pulp Fiction as various tales of underhand activities and moral free decision making neatly entwine. What sets this apart is the level of compassion that comes from the most unexpected of characters. Very well played.

Veronica


(Frightfest Day 5)
Gorgeous forest location used as a canvas for an excellent psychodrama that never lays things on too thick and delightfully flips the twist that you're expecting.

The Villainess [Ak-Nyeo]


(Frightfest Day 4)
A typically lengthy South Korean vengeance tale peppered with some breathtaking fight choreography in symbiosis with breathtaking camera work/editing.

Sunday, 27 August 2017

Mayhem


(Frightfest Day 4)
And in one fell swoop Office Space loses its top spot as most cathartic workplace revenge movie. Superb.

Replace


(Frightfest Day 4)
Elizabeth Bathory via Nicholas Winding Refn.

The End? [In un giorno la fine]


(Frightfest Day 4)
Just as you're asking yourself if there's anything new to be said with zombie cinema? Along comes this with a firm resounding 'no, not really.'

Killing Ground


(Frightfest Day 4)
A couple in terror movie that does everything you'd expect only told with twisted timelines and directed with an assured maturity that you maybe wouldn't expect from this kind of thing.

Death Laid An Egg [La morte ha fatto l'uovo/ A Curious Way to Love/ Plucked]


(Frightfest Day 3)
Quasi-giallo about how complex the economics of chicken farming are when you also have to juggle a wife, a mistress, a long lost amnesiac friend and a slew of tied up prostitutes. There's also a genetically modifed food subplot that gets a bit Cronenberg. And a room of truth.
Batshit crazy.

Victor Crowley


(Frightfest Day 3)
An array of extreme gunk spouting prosphetics and some beautifully crude humour, at their best when they're happening at the same time. The best Hatchet sequel. So far.

Saturday, 26 August 2017

Attack Of The Adult Babies


(Frightfest Day 3)
Laughed so hard at the fucking weirdest shit.
King.

Jackals


(Frightfest Day 3)
A clever drama about de-programming a cult member that throws clever out of the window from the off by casting Stephen Dorff as the clever character. Drama goes out the same window a half hour later when eighty massive cultists rock up and everything gets a bit Assault On Precinct 13 to preoccupy you whilst you wait for everybody to die.

Boots On The Ground


(Frightfest Day 3)
Filmed entirely with head mounted cameras creating maximum geographical confusion alongside a total inability to tell characters apart. Having a twist that puts forward the suggestion that everything was meant to be a confusing mess doesn't then make this ok.

The Bar [El bar]


(Frightfest Day 3)
Siege situation that allows de la Iglesia's attention to character and irreverent humour to shine brightly.

Dead Shack


(Frightfest Day 2)
Sweary Joe Dante.

Friday, 25 August 2017

Leatherface


(Frightfest Day 2)
Starts like Natural Born Killers vs Nekromantik and ends with Stephen Dorff chewing both the scenery and a chainsaw. So quite enjoyed it.

Our Evil [Mal Nosso]


(Frightfest Day 2)
A lot of familiar pieces assembled in a most enjoyably unfamiliar way, capped off with a fantastic soggy devil.

Dhogs


(Frightfest Day 2)
Asks me to be critical about my desire to view screen violence, abuse and the darkness contained within all humanity. It does it effectively as well, but unfortunately seven films into a horror film festival is the wrong time to ask me to give a fuck about why i'm watching so much nasty shit.

Sequence Break


(Frightfest Day 2)
Man uses complicated time loop to give himself a bit of a kick up the arse and get on with life.

The Glass Coffin [El ataúd de cristal]


(Frightfest Day 2)
Woman imprisoned in limousine has a lengthy conversation with a red light that has made some poor life choices but is unable to apportion blame to the self. The red light is also unable to recognise that their life choices can't have been that bad if they're now able to scrape together the considerable level of money and resources required for such elaborate misplaced revenge.

Psychopaths


(Frightfest Day 1)
Would benefit from having a story. And some competent camera work. And from not being shit.

Thursday, 24 August 2017

Death Note [2017 Remake]


(Frightfest Day 1)
The first act effectively streamlines the ludicrously complex storyline of the original film, the second act muddles all the characters and the third act shits the bed. But with style.

Cult Of Chucky


(Frightfest Day 1)
My complete overwhelming joy at another chance to see Chucky up to his tricks renders my opinion of this worthless. The doll could've farted for 90 minutes and if it was subtitled 'Hey Andy, I'm your friend to the end, wanna play?' then I'd be whooping and applauding.
There wasn't any farting. But I did whoop and applaud.

Your Name [IMAX] [Kimi no na wa]


Everything about this is just too damn nice to be truly critical about. So it's convenient that it was really good otherwise I'd have to bullshit.
Now somebody do Akira in IMAX. DO IT NOW.

Wednesday, 23 August 2017

The Dark Tower


Always a problem when adapting large scale book sagas is how to bring together your two disparate audiences, those who have read the books and those who have not.
This succeeds by having those who have not read the books think 'What the fuck?' for the entirety of the running time, whilst those who have will think 'WHAT THE FUCK!' for several hours afterward.

Monday, 21 August 2017

It Stains The Sands Red


Sets up a fantastic original zombie premise, gets a bit silly with it and then completely gives up attempting, instead, to shove an entirely different unoriginal movie into the last twenty minutes.

Sunday, 20 August 2017

A Ghost Story


Poses a lot of big existential questions and then literally just stands and stares at them. Still can't decide if this is a good thing or a cop out.

Thursday, 10 August 2017

Valerian And The City Of A Thousand Planets


As a film? No, not really. Constant digression loses the weak narrative and Dehaan is an extremely poor casting choice, though Eyebrows was excellent.
As a carefree romp through a fully realised world bloated with imagination? Yeah, loved it. And Eyebrows was excellent.

The Red Queen Kills Seven Times [La dama rossa uccide sette volte/ The Corpse Which Wouldn't Die]


A great film trying very hard to fight its way out of a mediocre one containing a baffling amount of characters. Should have made The Red Queen Kills Four Times instead.

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Five Dolls For An August Moon [5 bambole per la luna d'agosto/ Island Of Terror]


As Giallo begins to boom in popularity a wilful Bava appears to already be bored with it all, abandoning the usual explicit violence and instead trying to bend the whole affair into being a relationship farce more suited to the stage, only with plenty of sleaze and a high bodycount.

Saturday, 5 August 2017

68 Kill


Quick note to any other misogynistic dick who thinks that this kind of nonsense empowers women; If you make every woman in your film a hate figure that must be killed by an emasculated idiot so he may become a real man, then you're not empowering anybody, you're just churning out sub Tarantino bollocks.

Sunday, 30 July 2017

Journey 2: The Mysterious Island


The Rock and three people who are not The Rock go to an island where the only real mystery is whether anybody actually read the script before they willingly signed up to be part of such utter shit. In a rare moment of harmony the teenager pointed out that if not even The Rock could save a movie then it may well be the worst movie ever.

The Karate Kid [2010 Remake]


Trapped in a rundown hotel room with a fuzzy tv loaded with the most basic of digital channels, I found myself sitting stoney faced through this unecessary remake of throwaway eighties fluff. On the upside if I hadn't I would never have seen that poster with its deeply unfortunate placement of Jackie Chan's face.

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Dunkirk [IMAX]


An orchestra of evocative WW2 imagery conducted by Nolan's typically tricksy grasp of time. The teenager gave it a positive monosyllable.

Friday, 21 July 2017

Hidden Figures


Great to see mathematics not only getting people safely back and forth from space but also giving both sexism and racism a good kicking. Disappointing to see mathematics reduced to muttering to yourself as you write lists of numbers and operations before carefully drawing a circle around the last thing you write.

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Cannibal Holocaust [Ruggero Deodato's New Edit]


Not really a new edit at all, just some MS Paint fake film scratches layered over the more lingering shots of animal cruelty which does absolutely nothing to diminish the level of atrocity on offer.

War For The Planet Of The Apes


A satisfying climax, though Dawn had more war. But that's ok because this one's got more dawn.

It Comes At Night


Extinction level event horror stripped of the usual overt threat leaving grim, slowburn existential menace in its place. Superb.

Spider-Man: Homecoming [IMAX 3D]


Is not the best Spider-Man movie but is the best movie Spider-Man.

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Baby Driver


A heady cocktail of high octane automobile pursuit and carefully managed audio synchronisation segues into a stumbling clusterfuck of squabbling criminals and poorly thought out decision making. At least I liked the beginning, the teenager hated it all on the basis of unrealistic character motivation, to wit - "I wouldn't do all of that because of one ok date. There's plenty of other boys out there that don't shoot people".

Sunday, 18 June 2017

All The Colors Of The Dark [Tutti i colori del buio/ They're Coming To Get You!/ Day Of The Maniac/ Demons Of The Dead]


Giallo via Polanski as the ever watchable Edwige Fenech has a breakdown of the psyche and decides satanism is the best way to prevent visions of stabby killers everywhere she goes. King.

Saturday, 17 June 2017

Baywatch


I should rightly rip this to shreds but criticising Baywatch is a little bit like pointing out that primary school kids' artwork is shit.

The Mummy [2017 Effort]


In which the scriptwriters wrote a tedious, exposition heavy prologue and then cut and pasted it into every character's dialogue, the exception being Cruise's character who spends the first half constantly surprised that he's in the film and the second half going to every length to try and escape from it.

Thursday, 15 June 2017

Phenomena


After an unbroken run of excellent Giallos alongside an unbroken run of excellent supernatural horror movies Argento was clearly stuck as to which he should make next, so he tried to make both at the same time and succeeded in neither. And yet despite this it's still easily my second favourite movie featuring a homicidal simian. Yes, second favourite.

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Wonder Woman [IMAX 3D]


A bland caper enlivened by a well written central character who gives precisely zero fucks for gender conventions, story conventions or the fact that she's presently single handedly propping up the slowly wilting DC cinematic universe.