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LawrenceA

Recently Watched Horror

234 posts in this topic

On 10/3/2019 at 7:51 AM, cinemaspeak59 said:

It Chapter Two (2019) The omniscient, seemingly omnipotent clown from hell is back in the second installment based on the Stephen King novel.  The setting is 27 years later, 2016, which finds strange, eerily familiar happenings in Derry; this prompts Mike (Isaiah Mustafa), who has never left, to gather the Losers Club back for one last hurrah.  They have gone their separate ways, are successful if not necessarily happy.  Bill (James McAvoy) is a famous novelist.  Ben (Jay Ryan) is a prosperous architect. Richie (Bill Hader) is a standup comic whose insecurities and secrets are etched into his weathered skin. And poor Beverly (Jessica Chastain) can’t escape abusive relationships; this time it’s her brute of a husband.  Pennywise, the master manipulator and prankster that it is, inhabits their heads, causing hazy memories and mind-blowing hallucinations.

Mike has devoted his life to studying the history of Derry and thinks there’s a way to destroy Pennywise for good, which involves an ancient Indian ritual.  Will it work?  There are plenty of flashbacks to 1989, which connects the characters to the persons they are now. They’ve retained their sense of humor even in impending death.  Derry hasn’t changed much in 27 years.  Racism and homophobia are immune to social progress. What also hasn’t changed is the love the Losers Club have for each other.   It Chapter Two mixes jump scares with quiet, dread-filled scenes. And kudos to Bill Skarsgård for making Pennywise one of the great monsters in the horror genre. Andy Muschietti is back directing, a wise choice. The close to 3-hour running time doesn’t drag.  There’s no sequel jinx here. Grade A-

I did not like it as much as you did- yes the cast both old and new is excellent- but I did not find the movie as scary as the first one. 

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10 minutes ago, jaragon said:

I did not like it as much as you did- yes the cast both old and new is excellent- but I did not find the movie as scary as the first one. 

My health has taken a downturn as of late, so I was unable to go to the theater as I intended to see it. Hopefully I'll see it on video/streaming. However, a family member went to see it. She had enjoyed the first one as much as I did, but she was very disappointed with the sequel. I think she said it suffered from "CGI overkill".

I just finished watching In the Tall Grass, the new Netflix original, based on the novella by Stephen King & Joe Hill. The film was scripted and directed by Vincenzo Natali (CubeSplice). A brother and sister on a cross-country trip stop next to an overgrown field somewhere in rural Kansas. They hear a young boy calling for help from the field, so they trek into the tall grass to find him. Of course, they get lost, too, and soon learn that there's something sinister and supernatural going on. 

The film looks good, and uses sound design to its advantage. However, the characters are thin, and it gets a bit too clever for its own good in the film's second half. I don't want to get into specifics to avoid spoilers, but the movie takes a few turns, and becomes something more than expected, and then ultimately less. Still, I thought it was worth a watch for genre fans, and if you have Netflix, why not?  (6/10)

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4 minutes ago, LawrenceA said:

My health has taken a downturn as of late, so I was unable to go to the theater as I intended to see it. Hopefully I'll see it on video/streaming. However, a family member went to see it. She had enjoyed the first one as much as I did, but she was very disappointed with the sequel. I think she said it suffered from "CGI overkill".

I just finished watching In the Tall Grass, the new Netflix original, based on the novella by Stephen King & Joe Hill. The film was scripted and directed by Vincenzo Natali (CubeSplice). A brother and sister on a cross-country trip stop next to an overgrown field somewhere in rural Kansas. They hear a young boy calling for help from the field, so they trek into the tall grass to find him. Of course, they get lost, too, and soon learn that there's something sinister and supernatural going on. 

The film looks good, and uses sound design to its advantage. However, the characters are thin, and it gets a bit too clever for its own good in the film's second half. I don't want to get into specifics to avoid spoilers, but the movie takes a few turns, and becomes something more than expected, and then ultimately less. Still, I thought it was worth a watch for genre fans, and if you have Netflix, why not?  (6/10)

hero_in-the-tall-grass-movie-review-2019

I hope you feel better and the movie can wait for cable. Yes the CGI creatures were a bit too cartoony to be scary and the ripped off the spider monster from Carpenter's " The Thing"

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6 minutes ago, LawrenceA said:

My health has taken a downturn as of late, so I was unable to go to the theater as I intended to see it.

Hopefully that is just for the short term, my friend. Take care of yourself.

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On 10/5/2019 at 8:29 PM, LawrenceA said:

My health has taken a downturn as of late, so I was unable to go to the theater as I intended to see it.

Lawrence, I hope you feel better soon.  I enjoy reading your reviews and comments very much.

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Digging Up the Marrow  (2014)  -  5/10

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Writer-director Adam Green (Hatchet) also stars as himself, filming a "documentary" about a man (Ray Wise) who contacted Green via fan mail to inform him of the existence of real monsters. The man, a 61 year old retired policeman, claims to have discovered an underground world called "the Marrow", which is populated by deformed people and other "monsters". Green and his film crew are skeptical, but soon the evidence begins to pile up. Featuring cameos by horror actor Kane Hodder and directors Tom Holland and Mick Garris as themselves.

I'm not sure what Green was going for here. Some scenes are played for laughs, while others seem to be striving for seriousness. It's also strange to construct the film to look like an actual documentary, but then cast a recognizable actor like Ray Wise as the one "real" non-celebrity person in the movie. The whole thing ends up coming across like a self-indulgent lark.

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Marrowbone  (2017)  -  6/10

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Old-fashioned mystery/horror about a British mother and her four children who travel to her family's dilapidated ancestral estate in order to escape the children's father, a brutish monster convicted of multiple murders and robberies, but who escaped incarceration. Not long after arriving, the mother falls ill and dies, leaving the children alone, and under the supervision of eldest brother Jack (George MacKay). While they try to keep up the pretense that their mother is still alive, Jack finds romance with sweet librarian Allie (Anya Taylor-Joy, from The Witch). However, things take a dark turn when a sinister force seems to be haunting the children's home. Featuring Charlie Heaton, Mia Goth, Matthew Stagg, and Kyle Soller. 

This is decent enough, though ultimately unmemorable. It also falls prey to that tiresome modern horror shtick of pitching the dialogue at very low volume so as to startle the viewer with excessively loud soundtrack jolts. 

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Nightmare Cinema  (2018)  -  5/10

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Anthology horror film with 5 short tales. In the first, from director Alejandro Brugues (Juan of the Dead), a young woman is stalked by a masked killer straight out of an 80's slasher flick until the scenario gets flipped in an unexpected direction. In the second, from director Joe Dante (Gremlins), a young woman with a facial scar from a childhood accident may get a new look from a sympathetic plastic surgeon (Richard Chamberlain). In the third, from director Ryuhei Kitamura (The Midnight Meat Train), a priest (Maurice Benard) and a nun (Mariela Garriga) battle satanic forces in their church. In the fourth, from director David Slade (30 Days of Night), a worried mother (Elizabeth Reaser) goes to extreme lengths when she has to wait too long for a meeting. And in the fifth, from director Mick Garris (Sleepwalkers), a teenage boy miraculously survives a deadly car-jacking, only to find something is amiss in the hospital where he's recuperating. There's also a brief wraparound segment with Mickey Rourke as the projectionist in the theater showing the five tales.

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 These vary in quality, and I wasn't too crazy about any of them. Slade's B&W segment looked the best, while Brugues' is played for laughs. The last segment features the grandson of Charlie Chaplin (Orson Chaplin) as the carjacker.

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Overlord (2018) - Blu-ray

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w/ Jovan Adepo, Wyatt Russell (son of Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn), Pilou Asbæk, Mathilde Ollivier, John Magaro, Bokeem Woodbine (the only name in the cast that I immediately recognized), Iain De Caestecker and Dominic Applewhite. Story by Billy Ray. Screenplay by Billy Ray and Mark L. Smith. Directed by Julius Avery. And produced by J.J. Abrams (probably the reason for watching this in the first place) and Lindsey Weber.

Here it is. Already 12 days into the month of October and I've finally gotten around to watching a horror movie.

Although sometimes one forgets exactly what one is watching. My first thought while watching this movie was "Hey, didn't the makers of this movie know that the U.S. Army wasn't officially desegregated until after World War 2?". Quickly followed by "Hey, you are watching a movie about Zombie Nazis! And you are going to start nitpicking it for historical accuracy?!?".

Basically no more and no less than a fairly enjoyable B-movie genre mashup joyride. And, although there has been a number of movies that mix Nazis with horror and/or science-fiction (even Universal's old school horror movies included Invisible Agent (1942)), this movie has a lot more to do with first-person shooter video games like Call of Duty: Zombies and Wolfenstein. So it is best to watch this one as if you're watching someone play such a game.

Which means that I am fairly confident that Martin Scorsese wouldn't classify this as "cinema" either.

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