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LawrenceA

Recently Watched Horror

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LawrenceA, you're watching some of the worst horror flicks ever so I don't have to.  I'd say thanks but I'm concerned...  :huh:

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3 hours ago, ChristineHoard said:

LawrenceA, you're watching some of the worst horror flicks ever so I don't have to.  I'd say thanks but I'm concerned...  :huh:

The Ritual was really good! And like I said, The Babysitter came highly recommended, so I'm not intentionally searching out the worst of the worst. That being said...

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Pandemic (2016) - Apocalyptic viral horror thriller from XLrator Media and director John Suits. A virus has decimated the American population, with NYC already fallen and LA going down fast. A military operation is sending 4-person squads out into the city to try and rescue survivors. The story follows one such squad, including the Doctor (Rachel Nichols), the Gunner (Mekhi Phifer), the Navigator (Missi Pyle) and the Driver (Alfie Allen). The virus isn't just eventually deadly, as those infected become aggressive and even homicidal before entering "Stage 5", after which they are black-eyed zombies. As the squad sets out, they each have secret agendas that may doom them all. Also featuring Paul Guilfoyle, Pat Healy, and Danielle Rose Russell.

A rather cheap-looking generic zombie thriller is made extremely irritating by having the entire film shown in point-of-view (POV) shots. Each character's hazmat suit has a built-in camera on the helmet, so the film jumps from different perspectives, but always in the first person POV. The director apparently wanted it to feel like a video game, which it does, but a really bad one, with rote situations and pretty terrible performances from a fairly decent cast.   (3/10)

Source: Netflix.

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Don't Kill It (2016) - Goofy supernatural thriller from Archstone and director Mike Mendez. When a body-swapping black-eyed demon goes on a killing spree in a small Mississippi town, it's up to skeptical FBI agent Pierce (Kristina Klebe) and sketchy demon hunter Jebediah (Dolph Lundgren) to stop it. Also featuring Tony Bentley, James Chalke, Mike Doleac, and Toby Bronson.

This resembles a typical made-for-SyFy channel movie, with cheap production values and a padded runtime even at 90 minutes. There are some ridiculous gore scenes that look terrible, and a lot of the intended humor falls flat, but Lundgren isn't too awful as the cliched monster hunter.   (4/10)

Source: Netflix.

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I want to see this it reminds me of "The Others" and " The Innocents"....

 

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Out of the Dark (2014) - Supernatural thriller from Vertical Entertainment and director Lluis Quilez. Sarah (Julia Stiles) and Paul (Scott Speedman) move to a small town in Colombia with their young daughter Hannah (Pixie Davies). Sarah is supposed to be taking charge of a large paper mill owned by her father (Stephen Rea). Soon strange occurrences begin happening, and the locals warn of sinister spirits that haunt the jungle. But when Hannah goes missing, it may lead to an even darker secret. Also featuring Vanessa Tamayo, Alejandro Furth, and Alvaro Garcia Trujillo.

This is slick looking and well produced, but the story is a little muddled, and there are zero surprises. Stiles and Speedman look scared and concerned a lot, and Rea is wasted. The Colombian setting is unusual, and there's no gore or sadism like in most modern horror films. This was an American-Spanish-Colombian co-production, and it reminded me more of a Spanish style ghost story than the typical American fare.  (5/10)

Source: Netflix.

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I saw and liked " The Ritual" four men go on a hiking trip through Sweden  but take the wrong turn into Blair Witch land.   An excellent cast including Rober James Collier playing a very different character from his "Downtown Abbey" role.  The film works as a psychological thriller about guilt and a monster movie. The setting is both familiar and foreign. It's on Netflix but really deserved a theatrical release.  https://youtu.be/LXzSAJYn7YQ

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https://youtu.be/r3FT6xndS1YGeorge A Romero's "Season of the Witch" (1972) also known as "Hungry Wives" and " Jack's Wive".  This is more a feminist soap opera than horror movie about frustrated middle age woman Joan( Jan White) .   There is an interesting surreal opening which reminded me of Bunuel's "Belle de Jour" but this movie is not as sexy or provocative.  It's very talky as Joan deals with her distant husband, teenage daughter and shallow suburban friends.  Joan visits a tarot reading witch who inspires Joan to dabble in witchcraft. She use her powers to seduce a young man ( Raymond Lane)   Romero who was a terrific editor creates some memorable terror with an attack by a masked intruder. But most of the movie is very dated with some truly hideous 70's fashion. 

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I have always wanted to see the early Romero JACK'S WIFE (which I think was the original name back when I was reading biographical info about Romero).  Dated or not, it sounds interesting.  I also want to see his THERE's ALWAYS VANILLA, one of my all time favorite movie titles.

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3 hours ago, ChristineHoard said:

I have always wanted to see the early Romero JACK'S WIFE (which I think was the original name back when I was reading biographical info about Romero).  Dated or not, it sounds interesting.  I also want to see his THERE's ALWAYS VANILLA, one of my all time favorite movie titles.

"Jack's Wife" was the original title of "Season of the Witch"- which they tried to market as horror film when it was re-released.  They also tried the more provocative " Hungry Wives" which sounds like horror comedy about **** weight watchers .  Raymond Lane was the star of  " There Is Always Vanilla" which I think you can find on You Tube.  "Season of the Witch " is on Amazon prime.  It's a very good print which really brings out the psychedelic fashion colors.

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"Intruders" (2015)  Anna an agoraphobic young woman is terrorized by a men who break into her house in search of hidden money.  The intruders are in for a nasty surprise when Anna turns out to be less helpless than she appears. This an unpleasant and dumb movie. The screenwriters seemed to want to keep coming up with twists that make no sense.

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A QUIET PLACE (2017) is a derivative but well-crafted story about a family fighting to stay alive against alien creatures that attack at sound.  The monsters have pretty much wiped out most of humanity, and the setting is post-apocalyptic. There are strands of the excellent Pitch Black (2000), and more so Signs, from 2002. The performances elevate this beyond your standard creature feature, especially Emily Blunt as the besieged mother, and Millicent Simmonds and Noah Jupe, who play the children. Simmonds is deaf in real life. The dialogue is heavy on sign language and whispering, since loud sounds ring the dinner bell.  Director John Krasinski maintains a white-knuckled suspense, and seamlessly blends horror genre touchstones with a highly emotional family survivalist drama. Krasinski also plays the family patriarch. My only complaint is the design of the monsters; they’re not very distinctive, and the more you see of them, the less scary the movie.  Overall, A Quiet Place is a satisfying and gripping scare fest.

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Daylight's End (2016) - Post-apocalyptic action/horror from Throttle Films and director William Kaufman. A mysterious plague has decimated society, leaving the few scant survivors to struggle for existence against the mindless hordes of bloodthirsty infected. The daylight hurts those with the plague (no one ever calls them vampires), so the few uninfected try to scavenge during the day. Tough-guy loner Rourke (Johnny Strong) has made his way from New York to Dallas, and he runs across a group of survivors with plans to use a plane to get to safety on an island somewhere. Rourke reluctantly agrees to assist them, but a powerful "Alpha" vampire may change everyone's plans. Also starring Chelsea Edmundson, Louis Mandylor, Hakeen Kae-Kazim, Krzysztof Soszynski, Gary Cairns, Chris Kerson, Heather Kafka, Mark Hanson, and Lance Henriksen.

It would take more time to list all of the movies and TV shows this low-budget flick rips off than it does to watch the movie itself. From Richard Matheson's seminal novel I Am Legend to The Road Warrior to 28 Days Later to The Walking Dead, the influences are very obvious. The movie also likes its guns. The infected are vulnerable to gunfire, so there's a lot of shooting, almost all with that special-forces-silencer precision that's become the norm in military-style video games. The plot is simple and derivative, and the characters are all walking cliches. But the filmmakers manage to shoot a few scenes well enough to elevate this a tad over the glut of lower-end "survival horror"works. Johnny Strong, who also produced and composed the score (!), makes for a believable hero, and Louis Mandylor isn't bad as a cynical survivor. Female lead Edmundson is awful, though. I watched this for Lance Henriksen, one of the great B movie character actors of the last 40 years. He's turning 78 in the next few weeks, and he looks weary here. But he's still out there churning out low-budget genre films like there's no tomorrow, so I applaud him for his efforts.    (5/10)

Source: IndiePlex.

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On 4/18/2018 at 12:41 PM, cinemaspeak59 said:

A QUIET PLACE (2017) is a derivative but well-crafted story about a family fighting to stay alive against alien creatures that attack at sound.  The monsters have pretty much wiped out most of humanity, and the setting is post-apocalyptic. There are strands of the excellent Pitch Black (2000), and more so Signs, from 2002. The performances elevate this beyond your standard creature feature, especially Emily Blunt as the besieged mother, and Millicent Simmonds and Noah Jupe, who play the children. Simmonds is deaf in real life. The dialogue is heavy on sign language and whispering, since loud sounds ring the dinner bell.  Director John Krasinski maintains a white-knuckled suspense, and seamlessly blends horror genre touchstones with a highly emotional family survivalist drama. Krasinski also plays the family patriarch. My only complaint is the design of the monsters; they’re not very distinctive, and the more you see of them, the less scary the movie.  Overall, A Quiet Place is a satisfying and gripping scare fest.

I was not as impressed as you- yes the movie is effective in a B monster movie way- but the creatures were scarier kept in the shadows.

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Island of Lost Souls (1932) 

Charles Laughton plays the brilliantly diabolical Dr. Moreau in this film adaptation of the H.G. Wells book The Island of Dr. Moreau.  With his Mephistopheles goatee, and impish grin, Laughton adroitly alternates between underplaying and ham acting.   Dr. Moreau is afflicted with a God complex, and reigns over his island like a deity. Not satisfied with his half-human half-beast creations, the doctor will know he's found the holy grail only when he can get one of his best specimens, a panther woman, to mate with a shipwrecked passenger (Richard Arlen).  As Lota the Panther Woman Kathleen Burke brings a powerful sadness to her role. 

When the man's fiancé, played by the lovely Leila Hyams, arrives on the island looking for him, she sends into a frenzy the hormones of one of the more sexually aggressive beasts. This nice Pre-Code twist adds an air of depravity, and sends Moreau into a state of delirium.

Bela Lugosi has a small part as the conscientious leader of a group of slaves Moreau uses to police the island against unwanted outsiders. Paramount's make-up artists did great work in turning all the extras into believable looking hybrids.

The Island of Lost Souls is quite relevant given the debate surrounding genetic engineering.  Laughton’s three-dimensional Dr. Moreau operates from a conviction that he’s doing good, and finding untapped benefits for humanity. 

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On 6/14/2018 at 11:38 AM, cinemaspeak59 said:

Island of Lost Souls (1932) 

Charles Laughton plays the brilliantly diabolical Dr. Moreau in this film adaptation of the H.G. Wells book The Island of Dr. Moreau.  With his Mephistopheles goatee, and impish grin, Laughton adroitly alternates between underplaying and ham acting.   Dr. Moreau is afflicted with a God complex, and reigns over his island like a deity. Not satisfied with his half-human half-beast creations, the doctor will know he's found the holy grail only when he can get one of his best specimens, a panther woman, to mate with a shipwrecked passenger (Richard Arlen).  As Lota the Panther Woman Kathleen Burke brings a powerful sadness to her role. 

When the man's fiancé, played by the lovely Leila Hyams, arrives on the island looking for him, she sends into a frenzy the hormones of one of the more sexually aggressive beasts. This nice Pre-Code twist adds an air of depravity, and sends Moreau into a state of delirium.

Bela Lugosi has a small part as the conscientious leader of a group of slaves Moreau uses to police the island against unwanted outsiders. Paramount's make-up artists did great work in turning all the extras into believable looking hybrids.

The Island of Lost Souls is quite relevant given the debate surrounding genetic engineering.  Laughton’s three-dimensional Dr. Moreau operates from a conviction that he’s doing good, and finding untapped benefits for humanity. 

A classic science fiction horror movie in which unspeakable acts are suggested- this pre-code version really goes fof the kinkier aspects of the story

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4 hours ago, jaragon said:

"Hereditary" (2018) gets my vote as the worst movie of the year.

If you can keep it spoiler free, can you describe why? I was looking forward to it.

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18 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

If you can keep it spoiler free, can you describe why? I was looking forward to it.

"Hereditary"  is marketed like a horror film with a very effective trailer.  The actual films begins as a psycho drama about a family dealing with their matriarch's death.  Grandma was a strange woman with secrets as the soundtrack works over time to create a sense of dread.  Toni Collette  had a bad relationship with her mother and spends her time creating realistic dioramas.  Gabriel Byrne is her extremely patient husband. They have two children a son Peter  who is a teen age pot head and Charlie a very creepy daughter.  Things go from bad to worse when the family is stalked by a supernatural force until the over the top climax which I found more silly than shocking.

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I just re-watched Dario Argento's classic giallo " The Bird With The Crystal Plumage"(1970) on blu ray. This movie stands up very well from the lurid colors which really pop out now and  the inventive camera work.  Argento was obviously inspired by Hitchcock specially "Psycho".  He does create some classic set pieces of terror and suspense.  Tony Musante as an an American journalist in Rome witnesses an attempted murder through an art gallery window and finds himself hunted by the killer. 

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On 6/18/2018 at 6:53 PM, jaragon said:

"Hereditary"  is marketed like a horror film with a very effective trailer.  The actual films begins as a psycho drama about a family dealing with their matriarch's death.  Grandma was a strange woman with secrets as the soundtrack works over time to create a sense of dread.  Toni Collette  had a bad relationship with her mother and spends her time creating realistic dioramas.  Gabriel Byrne is her extremely patient husband. They have two children a son Peter  who is a teen age pot head and Charlie a very creepy daughter.  Things go from bad to worse when the family is stalked by a supernatural force until the over the top climax which I found more silly than shocking.

Ari Aster’s Hereditary creates a building atmosphere of dread.  Making it look like it takes place inside a doll’s house, (miniature houses figure prominently), creates a disorienting, other-worldly feel.  The textures, colors, even the sunlight, feel artificial and not quite right. The family house becomes a central character, accomplishing close to what the Overlook Hotel did in The Shining.  Enormous credit goes to the cinematographer, set designers, and lighting technicians.   There’s nothing original about Hereditary, except the horror movie tropes are executed with such insidious brilliance.  Something routine such as looking at your reflection is something you think twice about doing.  A portrait of grandma, how perfectly normal, meriting nothing more than a cursory glance, pulls us in with that ghostly, ominous subject staring back at us. 

Yes, the third act is a disappointment.  The ending draws back the curtain and announces “See, you’ve since this all before, haven’t you?”  Well, yes, we have.  But there’s enough chilling, blood-curdling imagery, and sound, that not even an ending this over-used could spoil.  The cast, led by Toni Collette, and including Gabriel Byrne, Alex Wolff, Milly Shapiro and Ann Dowd, are outstanding.

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4 hours ago, cinemaspeak59 said:

Ari Aster’s Hereditary creates a building atmosphere of dread.  Making it look like it takes place inside a doll’s house, (miniature houses figure prominently), creates a disorienting, other-worldly feel.  The textures, colors, even the sunlight, feel artificial and not quite right. The family house becomes a central character, accomplishing close to what the Overlook Hotel did in The Shining.  Enormous credit goes to the cinematographer, set designers, and lighting technicians.   There’s nothing original about Hereditary, except the horror movie tropes are executed with such insidious brilliance.  Something routine such as looking at your reflection is something you think twice about doing.  A portrait of grandma, how perfectly normal, meriting nothing more than a cursory glance, pulls us in with that ghostly, ominous subject staring back at us. 

Yes, the third act is a disappointment.  The ending draws back the curtain and announces “See, you’ve since this all before, haven’t you?”  Well, yes, we have.  But there’s enough chilling, blood-curdling imagery, and sound, that not even an ending this over-used could spoil.  The cast, led by Toni Collette, and including Gabriel Byrne, Alex Wolff, Milly Shapiro and Ann Dowd, are outstanding.

I do agree with you that the film technically is very well made and the performances are good. But the problem is that script- anyone familiar with Ira Levin pretty much figures out were the story is going- to me the third act reveal is way over the top. 

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