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Nemoide
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 10: The Rebootening

by Nemoide Sun Oct 20, 2019 9:48 pm

Ack wrote:14. TerrorVision (1986)


Hell yeah! TerrorVision is a great one! I *didn't* know that it had a 0% on Rotton Tomatoes but it absolutely deserves cult-classic status! It's way better than most of the Full Moon pictures Charles Band went on to produce a few years later.

Anyway, I've watched a BUNCH of things (and played one thing) I haven't been writing about! Let's fix that!
You're Next - A family gathering turns deadly as people in masks start attacking people. Normally I pass over "home invasion" movies but I heard enough good things about this one that I gave it a chance. I'm glad I did because it does what it does very well; it's tense and violent and has enough of a plot to keep it interesting. It's nothing too mind-blowing but I really enjoyed it.

Lady in White - This is about a young boy who's locked in a school coat room over a Halloween weekend and sees a ghost... and is attacked by someone who apparently has killed before (though he escapes without learning his identity). The kid then tries to uncover the mystery of what happened. I really like ghost movies, so I was expecting to like this, but... it didn't do it for me. Honestly it felt more like a nostalgia-movie akin to A Christmas Story than a horror film. An interesting change of pace, but it prevented me from really engaging with the emotional weight the movie wanted me to engage with.

Transylvania 6-5000 - Jeff Goldblum and Ed Begley Jr. are reporters for a trashy tabloid who go to Transylvania to find out if Frankenstein's monster is still running amok. The whole thing is pretty goofy with Michael Richards playing a wacky butler and Gena Davis playing a sexy Vampire. The movie has some good points, but overall is just too threadbare to work. I feel like some spookier art design would have really elevated the whole thing, but the horror elements felt too downplayed to really cast a shadow and a lot of the comedy is a bit too cornball. It does have an amazing theme song though! Although for most of the movie they just use "Pennsylvania 6-5000" throughout and it runs thin.

The Frighteners - Peter Jackson's transitional film from low-budget New Zealand films to big-budget Hollywood work! Michael J Fox plays a psychic ghostbuster who scams people by talking to his real-ghost friends and having them fake-haunt people who he then fake-exorcises. Meanwhile people in the town are dying at an unnaturally high rate of seemingly natural causes. The movie has a certain charm as Peter Jackson is still showing some creative flair and it feels like a time capsule representing a certain kind of early 90s movies they don't make anymore. I don't like it as much as his earlier films, but it's solid enough.

Psychos in Love - This is one I'd always see in the video store as a kid but never got around to renting. So I got Vinegar Syndrome's Blu-Ray/DVD which is as good as this movie's ever going to look. It's exactly what you'd expect: it's a mockumentary about a male serial killer and a female serial killer fall in love. It's rooted much more concerned about being a goofball comedy than being a horror movie, but it commits to comedy enough to make it enjoyable in a kind of dumb way. The jokes are bad, but the filmmakers know it and it works enough for me.

The First Purge - The Purge, the one night of the year when all crime is legal, is probably the dumbest core concept a movie could have. But somehow the series manages to be pretty good! And for the fourth film in a franchise and the first to be directed by someone other than James DeMarco who did the first three, this movie is way better than it should be. It still has some dumb stuff (eg on Purge night a cash-for-gold business is still open? WITH THE NEON SIGN TURNED ON???) but the movie very much makes a point of saying what it wants to say. It's focused on a black community in Staten Island who are experiencing the first experimental Purge... and it turns out Neo-Nazies, KKK, international mercinaries, and police are all organized and are trying to kill minorities and poor people while pinning the blame on gangs. Subtle it ain't. But it works!

Black Sunday - Mario Bava's classic about an evil witch and her Vampire boyfriend who come back to life after 200 years to terrorize a noble family. Honestly, this movie has some pacing issues, but I deeply love it anyway. Barbara Steele is the main reason because she's magnificent at playing supernatural/evil beauties. She also plays a good character too, so she's in the movie even more! This movie is stunningly beautiful and dripping with gothic atmosphere. This was a rewatch and maybe holds more joy in memory than in actually watching it, but I like it anyway.

Don't Breathe - Another home invasion film I've heard good things about, THIS ONE completely lives up to the hype. A group of young buglers break into the house of a blind Iraq veteran who's supposed to have hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash in his home. The sense of tension starts strong and DOES NOT LET UP. This is definitely a modern masterpiece. I now think that I should actually watch the Evil Dead remake since it's also directed by Fede Alvarez, he's on my radar now.

American Horror Story (season 1) - I finally finished this and I liked it enough to think that I'll watch more. I had heard people say that the series gets crazy but I wasn't expecting it to get as ridiculous as it got right in the first season. A family move into an infamous "murder house" which turns out to be haunted... by what feels like 47 different ghosts! Seriously, there are a LOT of ghosts in that house, too many to be taken entirely seriously. It also makes the odd creative choice of making just about all of the characters unlikable (the main mom & daughter are the most sympathetic but they still do some frustratingly boneheaded things). Either way, for a horror story that's being told over 12 episodes, it keeps things interesting and that's about all I can ask for. I know the second season is unconnected but apparently all of AHS shares a universe? So I'll look forward in seeing the whole thing take its crazy shape!

Luigi's Mansion (Gamecube) - I had long thought this game was supposed to be "pretty okay" but now that it's gotten a remake, and the second sequel is coming out, it seems that it has developed a following. But really it is mostly a "pretty okay" game at heart. It's fun, but short and simple. I'm glad to have played it but don't plan exploring the series any further.
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Michi
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 10: The Rebootening

by Michi Sun Oct 20, 2019 9:59 pm

Nemoide wrote:.....I now think that I should actually watch the Evil Dead remake since it's also directed by Fede Alvarez, he's on my radar now.

I think it's one of the better remakes I've seen, honestly. It's brutal and violent and gory and very different from the original, so don't go in expecting anything in the way of comedy elements. It's taken upon itself to ask the question of "what if Evil Dead was a straight-up brutal horror film?" and answers that same question with 'a fuck-ton of blood, guts and sinew, and an actual demon.' Good stuff.
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 10: The Rebootening

by Ack Wed Oct 23, 2019 2:43 pm

Behold, I bring you more terrifying tales!


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20. The Barn (2016)

For a no-budget indie horror film, this is actually pretty entertaining. And I mean no-budget, as production shut down half way when the crew ran out of money, and everyone came back to finish the film for free. Look, it's a throwback made with love, and while it isn't exactly high art, it's still fun for what it is.

Legend tells of a barn that, if approached on Halloween, will release three vengeful spirits: Hollow Jack, the Candy Corn Scarecrow, and the Boogeyman. These three are demons from Hell sent to gather flesh for the Devil and to try and build a gate into our world. When some teenagers who happen to love Halloween show up and knock on the door, they summon the demons, and what follows is a fair bit of gore and cheap tricks, but lovingly told.

Yeah, it's another case for me where the heart of the production means more than the quality. The Barn is a throwback to 1980s style done out of adoration, and for that, I can appreciate it, even if it is done with clothes and costumes purchased at thrift stores.


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21. Claws (1977)

This movie sometimes gets labeled as the sequel to Grizzly because it was marketed that way in certain international regions, but it is not. No, in fact this is about on par with a made-for-TV movie. It uses stock footage, a lot of slow motion, and sometimes a guy in a bear costume.

Basically, some poachers in Alaska wound a grizzly but fail to kill it. It then gets mad and becomes the Devil Bear, where it mauls a guy's arm. Five years later, it shows up and hurts a kid. Some locals go out to try and find it after it mauls a bunch of dudes who set traps for it. Unfortunately, most of them die too, killed by the bear...or more precisely, suddenly tackled in slow motion by a guy in a suit.

Look, you know those giant taxidermy bears you sometimes see used as gags in films? This movie ends with one of those lit on fire and thrown off a cliff. Seriously. At best, this film is good for a chuckle.


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22. Don't Kill It (2017)

Sometimes, action stars make horror films. These might be amazing, like Arnold Schwarzenegger doing Predator. These might be awful, like Steven Segal's Into the Dark. Now there's a movie I hope to never suffer through again. But this time, it's Dolph's turn. And you know what? It's actually pretty good.

Basically, Dolph is a demon hunter who sleeps in his car. And then there's a demon, which possesses people by getting killed by them. Hence the title of the film. Whenever the demon possesses someone, it starts a massacre, and then as folks defend themselves, it hops between them until the final one is done killing. Then it might take a break before the next massacre.

Since the demon is now loose in a small town in Mississippi, Dolph has to team up with the local sheriff and an FBI agent who is sent to look into the weird murders. Over the course of trying to take it down with a big ol' net gun, he discovers the FBI agent may well be descended from angels, and the demon knows this. But eh, back to the important stuff, watching demon children suddenly mutilate FBI agents in all its bloody glory. Also, I want to see Dolph star in a Western. He makes a great modern-type cowboy in this film.


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23. The Lair of the White Worm (1988)

Hugh Grant and Peter Capaldi are in a British erotic horror movie about a snake god and its sexy follower trying to sacrifice everybody to it. That's not a sentence I ever thought I'd write in my life, but it's true.

A handful of folks, including Grant as a rich gentry and Capaldi as a young archaeologist, investigate the strange disappearances in their small area of the English countryside, while Amanda Donohoe shows off her legs and bares her fangs as a snake lady, turning people into snake zombies with her venom and causing really weird hallucinations that look like gory music videos from the very beginning of MTV. And Donohoe knows how to use her feminine wiles to get what she wants. Let's just say that I'm interested in her pagan rituals, if-you-get-what-I-mean-and-I-think-you-do.

This is a very British movie, including Capaldi running around in a kilt and playing snake charming music on bagpipes. But it does a fantastic job of playing with old Anglo-Saxon legends and pre-Medieval history. I rather enjoyed it, and not just because Donohoe is hot. There is one misstep where the film goes into a dream sequence involving a pen that is not so subtle in its meaning, but...hey, I also like watching women in pantyhose wrestle. What can I say? I'm a pig.

23/31

1. Mulberry Street
2. As Above, So Below
3. Southbound
4. Don't Look in the Basement
5. Turkey Shoot
6. Jack Brooks: Monster Slayer
7. It Chapter 2
8. Mausoleum
9. Razorback
10. 1922
11. Eaten Alive
12. Manhattan Baby
13. Willard
14. TerrorVision
15. Bride of Re-Animator
16. Return of the Living Dead III
17. Darkness Falls
18. The Unnamable
19. The Driller Killer
20. The Barn
21. Claws
22. Don't Kill It
23. The Lair of the White Worm
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 10: The Rebootening

by noiseredux Wed Oct 23, 2019 3:43 pm

Michi wrote:
Nemoide wrote:.....I now think that I should actually watch the Evil Dead remake since it's also directed by Fede Alvarez, he's on my radar now.

I think it's one of the better remakes I've seen, honestly. It's brutal and violent and gory and very different from the original, so don't go in expecting anything in the way of comedy elements. It's taken upon itself to ask the question of "what if Evil Dead was a straight-up brutal horror film?" and answers that same question with 'a fuck-ton of blood, guts and sinew, and an actual demon.' Good stuff.


I agree, though in fairness, I don't really see the original Evil Dead as having much in the way of comedic elements. Not intended ones anyway. I think the original is pretty creepy honestly. (And one of my favorite movies EVER). I feel like the comedic stuff didn't come about until 2 and Army of Darkness.

But still. Yeah. The "remake" (quotes on purpose - though marketed as such, I think there's a lot pointing to this being a legit sequel) is sooooo brutal and gory. Like, there's a couple parts that I haven't been able to watch without looking away from after seeing it in the theater. Oh man.
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Ack
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 10: The Rebootening

by Ack Wed Oct 23, 2019 4:06 pm

I will also throw in my two cents and say yes, Evil Dead is one of those cases where they went fully brutal and it works. It's a deeply uncomfortable movie to watch, and it succeeds because of that discomfort. It's not like the Nightmare on Elm Street remake, where they went for grimdark and only came off as a cheap facsimile; no, this feels like uncharted territory, an original take on the series by someone other than Raimi, who ends up making something that won't fail to make you shudder. It's something to enjoy, but it's also now something to endure.
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 10: The Rebootening

by prfsnl_gmr Wed Oct 23, 2019 4:25 pm

+1

The Evil Dead remake/sequel rules. Really brutal movie with an amazingly satisfying ending. Like The Ring, I prefer it to the original. (Evil Dead 2, which is also kind-of-a-remake-kind-of-a-sequel to The Evil Dead, remains the series’ best.)

Also, The Lair of the White Worm is really fun. Great reviews, Ack.

.....

On Monday, my wife and I watched Opera (1987), a late-period Dario Argento giallo (and, arguably, Dario Argento’s last good movie). In it, a young soprano is stalked by a masked assailant who makes her watch as he murders her acquaintances and co-workers. He does this by tying her up and taping needles to her eyelids. (She can still blink, but she can’t close her eyes really hard without it hurting...I guess???...Look...this is a Dario Argento film. It doesn’t make a lot of sense.) The film really showcases some fantastic camerawork - a tracking shot over a costume workshop subtly highlighting all of its dangers is my very favorite - and the soundtrack is also great. (Well...the opera and synth parts are great. I could do without the mid-80s butt-metal they play over all the murder scenes.) Like a lot of Argento’s best films, Opera is more of an exercise in style, but it does have a coherent plot and sympathetic, generally well-developed characters. We both enjoyed it quite a bit, and while it’s neither Argento’s best film nor the best of the giallo sub-genre, fans of either will find a lot to like about it.

prfsnl_gmr’s Halloween Movies 2019 (The Ill-Conceived Reboot)
1. Witchboard - :)
2. Mad Love - :)
3. The Love Witch - :D
4. Goodnight, Mommy - :)
5. The Monkey’s Paw - :)
6. Spider Baby - :D
7. Bone Tomahawk - :)
8. Creepy - :D
9. Opera - :)
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Ack
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 10: The Rebootening

by Ack Wed Oct 23, 2019 4:38 pm

Oh man, here comes Noise to tell us how much he despises Argento...

Seriously though, I'd agree that Opera is probably the last good movie of his. The little I've seen beyond that has been a mess. '90s cameras and effects really killed his style.

The shot you mention of the costume workshop and the scissors cutting fabric is my second favorite in the whole film. At his best, Argento could make any sharp implement instill dread in the audience. Though my favorite is the knife coming up through the mouth.
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Michi
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 10: The Rebootening

by Michi Wed Oct 23, 2019 6:47 pm

Ah, man. All this talk about awesome remakes and gorgeous giallo and I come in and drop this :lol:

Write-up #7:

Rabid Grannies

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noiseredux
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 10: The Rebootening

by noiseredux Wed Oct 23, 2019 6:56 pm

Haha... Opera is really good tho.
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Re: Racketboy Month of Horror 10: The Rebootening

by prfsnl_gmr Wed Oct 23, 2019 9:24 pm

Ack wrote:Oh man, here comes Noise to tell us how much he despises Argento...

Seriously though, I'd agree that Opera is probably the last good movie of his. The little I've seen beyond that has been a mess. '90s cameras and effects really killed his style.

The shot you mention of the costume workshop and the scissors cutting fabric is my second favorite in the whole film. At his best, Argento could make any sharp implement instill dread in the audience. Though my favorite is the knife coming up through the mouth.


Yes and....yes. At that point in the movie, when the camera slowly pans out over the various instruments of death, you know a kill is coming soon. It’s just a matter of what implement the killer is going to use. Also, the shot of knife through the mouth was great. My wife and I both winced before saying, “That was actually pretty awesome.”
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