Friday, December 31, 2010

Something Beneath (2007)

An environmentalist consultant warns a developer not to build his conference center due to environmental issues with the land. As with all greedy big business land developers, the warning is ignored and the scientist is fired. Guess they should have just given him a prewritten report rather than expecting him to advise them like he was hired to do.

When the conference center opens, Kevin Sorbo arrives and reveals that he's a priest. The good looking man is a priest? On no! However will the lady with a crush on him handle this?

Then in another shocker, toxic gooey sludge shows up in the plumbing and sewers. Anyone who touches the sludge starts hallucinating their worst fear and quickly dies.

Of course a few deaths aren't going to stop the grand opening. The developer tells the staff to keep the deaths under wraps since nothing will hurt business like visitors deaths on the first day.

Sorbo and his lady interest investigate the sludge and find it is a new life form that feels attacked by humans. So it kills people before they can harm it.

Of special interest is the blogger who shows up to cover the conference, touches the sludge, and hallucinates his worst fear - wolves. After his body is found, they keep referring to as him as "poor kid," which seemed strange since I thought he was in his fifties.

Aberration (1997)

Amy steals money from the Russian mob and then heads to an old family cabin in the woods. A biologist living in the town the cabin is located has been studying why the insects and wildlife are disappearing. After a snow storm strands them both at her cabin, they discover the problem is mutant lizards who are expanding their prey to include humans.

As the two try to find ways to kill the lizards, the lizards are dropping eggs, munching on any living thing they can find, and adapting to whatever is used to kill them. It all culminates with something that will leave you dissatisfied.

Final Draft (2007)

James Van der Beek moves slowly and dreams of when he was a kid at the circus and a clown caught fire and died. James decides to write a screenplay about the clown coming back for revenge on all the kids who laughed at him as he burned. His agent pays for his huge loft apartment and gives him cash since he doesn't have a job. Yet James seems incredulous when he is given a deadline to write the story.

After more slow moving, non-clowny scenes of James playing basketball in his loft, day dreaming about a waitress, watching tv, and wasting his time goofing off in a montage, we couldn't take it anymore and called it quits. So... no, I don't recommend watching this unless you really, really like James Van der Beek. The promise of the killer clown is not what it seems.

Chupacabra Terror (2005)

Dr. Pena, a cryptozoologist, captures a Chupacabra and smuggles it onto a cruise ship in a crate. Two maintenance workers open the box to see what is inside and become it's first victims. The monster-suited terror gets out of the cargo hold and starts roaming the hallways, killing crew, passengers, and even the Navy seals sent to help regain control of the ship.

Everyone on board is sent to the lifeboats except the Federal Marshall (who was called aboard to investigate who robbed the safe), Dr. Pena, the Captain, his daughter, and a con artist/gigalo who wears a craveat, blazer, has a fake tan, and hair that gets worse as the movie goes on.

Dr. Pena wants to recapture the Chupacabra, no matter what the risk to the passengers and crew. So he sabotages their attempts to trap the creature since they intend to kill it. Dr Pena even goes so far as to use the Captain's daughter as bait, which involves tying her to a counter in the kitchen. Luckily in order to hunt the monster, she has changed gratuitously changed into a tank top. Also oddly enough her breast size seems to have increased since the beginning of the movie. She sits on the counter, shaking and shimmying back in forth in a laughable attempt to get free from the ropes which accentuate her cleavage.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

S.I.C.K. - Serial Insane Clown Killer

Brandon invites three friends, (Tracy, his date, and married couple Mark and Susan), to his uncle's remote cabin in the woods for a relaxing weekend. On the way, they stop in a bar and decide to give a ride to a young hitchhiker who is being harassed by a trucker. For some stupid reason, they also decide to let her stay at the cabin.

After a night of drinking, they get up to discover Susan is missing and there are decapitated dolls in the fridge. They head into the woods to look for Susan and find other dolls made up like clowns, and something horrible nailed to a tree. Honestly, I'm not sure what it was but they all recoiled in terror. Eventually everyone starts arguing and blaming each other for what is happening.

Then we cut to a clown cam point of view, which consists of most of the screen blocked except for two eye holes. The evil clown has Susan tied to a tree and he's got an axe. Nothing good can come from this. People run around the woods, the clown chases them, and stupid things happen.

The soundtrack is not appropriate for what is happening on screen. It sounds like it was made on a Casio keyboard. There is a twist ending that will make you go "oh" and wish you hadn't wasted your time.

A few other observations:
  1. even though the clown is walking slowly and is severely overweight, he is still able to catch Mark since Mark runs like he's wearing heels and a dress.
  2. the clown spends most of his time chopping wood and singing nursury rhymes in a satan-esque voice
  3. the clown only wears his clown suit at the beginning of the film, then he wears a white tshirt with the clown mask
  4. when I saw the subtitle my first thought was, "so they are killing insane clowns?"
  5. the opening scene of a woman who is stabbed seems to have no relevance to anything else in the film.

Are You Scared 2 (2009)

Team DNA, an obnoxious self important group of four friends, is going for the world record in geocaching and just need to find the last hidden treasure. Subscribers to their website can watch as they record their adventues, oooo how exciting.

After camping in a wildlife refuge (?!?), the group uses their gps to locate an abandoned building in the middle of nowhere which supposedly holds the treasure. Unbeknownst to them, it also holds multiple video cameras, two flunkies, and Tony Todd who is controlling it all and plans to make them the next victims in the live broadcast on his underground website.

Todd spends his time mumbling, playing with a turtle, and watching his inbred henchmen try to kill the kids. The kids turn out to be incredibly stupid making it easy for the flunkies to find them. Some of the stupid antics we are treated to are:
  • one of the girls refuses to go anywhere until someone tells her what is going on, even though they are being pursued by a maniac who is trying to kill them.
  • one of the guys tells the others he'll stay to fight the killer who is chasing them so the others can get away. Their brilliant escape plan is to hide in a closet at the far end of hte room.
  • after running around trying to find a way out of the building, they finally come up with a brilliant idea, "I think we need to get to the ground floor." Really, you think?
  • the map given to them by Todd repeatedly leads them to dead ends but they continue to it. Finally one decides they should, "just need to do the opposite of what it says."
While this is the only movie I've seen with a geocache premise, they shouldn't have made the assumption that people are familiar with this . Many viewers will have no idea what these kids are doing. Even if you do know, the onscreen gps coordinates are distracting and add nothing to the film. Who cares what the coordinates are? It makes no difference to the plot.

Also why did Todd pick these particular kids and how did he manage to set up his operation in the spot where the treasure was hidden? The kids are annoying as hell, but if they're well known geocachers and on the brink set a record, people are going to notice when they disappear.

There are cameras everywhere. In fact, there are multiple cameras everywhere. The closet the kids hide in shows at least four camera angles in the footage. Would anyone really put that many cameras in a closet in hopes that perhaps the kids would hide in it?

There are shots of the kids going upstairs, then downstairs, then upstairs again. That makes no sense. And it happens several times in the movies. I'm guessing it was supposed to make it seem like they were covering a lot of ground, but it makes them seem like they're not getting anywhere.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Homecoming (2009)

Mike and his new girlfriend Elizabeth return to his hometown over college break. Mike was a high school football star and there is a ceremony to retire his jersey. The problem is that Mike's exgirlfriend Shelby still thinks they are a couple, even though he broke up with her before he went away to college and hasn't spoken to her in months.

Mike and Elizabeth are invited to hang out with Mike's friends. Elizabeth wants to get to know his friends, so against Mike's better judgement, they head over to the bowling alley, which is owned by Shelby.

When Mike rebuffs Shelby's advances and tells her he has a girlfriend, Shelby feigns friendship to Elizabeth by buying her a drink. She continues to ply Elizabeth with liquor, resulting in Elizabeth being very drunk by the nights end. Since she doesn't want to meet Mike's parents in this state, she decides to stay at a motel on the edge of town.

After Mike drops her off, she finds out the motel is full. Her cell phone can't get any reception so she starts walking the four miles to the next motel and is accidentally hit by a car which turns out to be driven by Shelby.

When Shelby realizes who it is, she takes her home rather than to the hospital, where Elizabeth becomes Shelby's prisoner under the guise of nursing her back to health. Shelby says she told Mike about her, but Mike never calls or comes by and Elizabeth starts to suspect there is a problem.

Meanwhile Mike is frantic trying to find Elizabeth. Shelby uses Elizabeths' phone to text Mike that she doesn't want to be in the relationship and has gone home. Mike won't believe Elizabeth would do that, but everyone else thinks he needs to accept he's been dumped. Shelby uses this time to try to get back together with Mike.

This is a creepy movie as the thought of being held captive by a nutjob is terrifying. However its reminded me of a teenaged version of the Stephen King novel/film, Misery.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Camp Slaughter (2005)

aka Camp Daze

A group of friends heading to Boston gets lost while taking a shortcut down a dirt road. Their car breaks down breaks down, they have no cell reception, and something spooky is in the woods.

The next morning, they wake up to find a group of camp counselors surrounding their car. The counselors invite them back to Camp Hiawatha, where it is the last day of camp, and call a tow truck.

The campers and counselors are all wearing fashions from over twenty years ago. 1980s music is playing in the camp and everyone in the camp seems confused by references to anything modern.

The group waits for a tow truck from town, but it never arrives. Once it is night, a killer starts targeting the campers, counselors, and new arrivals.

The premise of a camp from 1981 caught in some sort of time warp and reliving one night is interesting, but it presents too many inconsistencies. One is that it doesn't make sense if everyone knows what is going to happen, but they keep on doing the exact same thing. How about trying something different? More importantly, I don't care what happens to any of the characters because I know when the next day begins, they will be perfectly fine.

Also the film is supposed to take place in Maine, yet at the beginning of their trip to Boston, they drive by a sign saying Welcome to Maine. So.... where the heck are they coming from? If they're heading into Maine, that means they are heading away from Boston. If they're in New Hampshire, it wouldn't make sense to drive into Maine to go to south.

Stump the Band (2006)

When a female band takes a short cut through the woods to get to their next show, they wind up accidentally running off the road. They also discover that the local gas station did not actually pump the gas that they bought. So between the lack of gas and the accident, the van won't start. Cell phones won't work either, so they spend the night while trying to figure out what to do next.

The next day, they go skinny dipping, wander through the woods and people start disappearing. Turns out there is a group of hillbillys in the wood who collect feet, yes that's right, feet. When the hillbillys kill their manager, the group splits up and runs off into the woods in an attempt to escape.

The film features former child actor Danny Cooksey, and also has involvement from another former child actor, Robbie Rist, who looks nothing like he did as Cousin Oliver on the Brady Bunch.

Friday, December 24, 2010

New Years Evil (1980)

On New Years Eve, Blaize is hosting a live concert broadcast where fans can call in to vote for their favorite new wave/punk song of the year. A caller going by the name Evil states he is going to kill someone in each time zone when the clock strikes midnight, making Blaize the final victim.

No one is sure whether to take it serious or if it's a crank call. But when Evil calls back with audio of the first murder, they decide to lock down the building.

The bands are more like Hollywoods version of new wave and punk, along the lines of what you would see on Quincy or a 70s cop show.

Wyvern (2009)

An Alaskan town is preparing for their annual winter solstice celebration when global warming and a fisherman's blood awakens a long frozen dragon. After some locals figure out that recent deaths are the result of this creature, they ask that the big solstice barbeque be cancelled and town folk stay indoors. But the sheriff won't listen and the celebration continues to predictably bad results.

This is actually fairly decent and entertaining, although full of cliches. One thing to watch for is when Jake gets into his truck near the end of the film, first he's wearing his hat, then he's not, then it's back again.

Bloody New Year (1987)

A bunch of teenagers (who look much older) go to a fun fair, save a girl from carnie thugs, and barely escape when the carnies chase them. They head out on a sailing trip, but the boat sinks and they wind up on an island where they find a hotel decorated for a new years celebration. That's odd since it's the middle of summer.

They keep hearing people, but no one is there. A ghost maid appears to one girl, which seems innocent enough. But the spirit who appears out of the movie screen in the theater and the monster who springs out of a table are out for blood.

There is a strange time warp involving the 1959 new year celebration, references to Operation Mirror which was a top secret government project, a plane crash, ghosts in mirrors, and just to add to this jumble, the carnies were so upset with our teens that they actually traveled out to the island to get revenge. They never really explain anything and it's not that much of a bloody new year.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Lost Boys: The Tribe (2008)

Orphans Chris and his sister Nicole move to town where they rent a shack from his wacky Aunt. Chris was a surfer who was banned from competition after an incident with another surfer. While trying to find work at local surf shops, he is invited to a party where he runs into his old nemesis.

The party is hedonistic and Nicole takes a liking to Shane. He gives her a drink which turns out to be vampire blood which causes her to begin a transformation.

Since no one will believe his story, Chris teams up with Edgard Frog to fight the vampires. I'm not sure why no one will believe him since vampires have been in town for years and there are tons of flyers for missing kids who have disappeared. But the sheriff is very nonchalant about it all. There is even a chase scene in which the vampires taunt the cops inside the station. They give chase and end up looking like they're the Keystone Cops.

This is a Lost Boys movie in name only and is very disappointing. Even bringing back Corey Feldman to reprise his role as one of the Frog Brothers can't save this one. Corey Haim appears for a minute at the end, plus in a few short out takes.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Night of the Demons 2 (1994)

A group of teens decide their school Halloween party is too tame. So they head out to Hull House, which has been abandoned since a massacre occurred there a few years ago. The teens awaken the demons who start killing anyone they cn get their hands on. When the kids try to escape, they accidentally bring the demons back to school by taking something with them from the house.

Now here's what I don't understand. One of the girls finds a lipstick on the floor of the bathroom. The house hasn't been lived in for years, but she decides to use the lipstick. Not only that, but she puts it in her purse for later use. Bleech!! Are you kidding me? Why would anyone take an old lipstick from an abandoned house? You don't know whose used it. That's just gross.

Dead Men Walking (2005)

Travis is sent to prison after police pick him up for murder. He has been infected by an experimental biotoxin which is transferred via body fluids. The CDC knows he was infected, but think the best way to contain the outbreak is to send him to prison- huh?

The CDC lady who arrives at the prison to check on him is not very bright. After Travis pukes blood on the doctor and three convicts, she isn't alarmed. She also doesn't understand why someone who was scratched by one of the infected has died since his wounds were superficial. Even after she confirms Travis is infected, she still isn't concerned that he has puked blood on others.

When the prisoners start turning into zombies and getting out of control, the guards leave the CDC lady in the infirmary with a guy who has been bitten. Whaaa??? The preachy Reverend prisoner is smart enough to figure out that she shouldn't be there when he dies since he's going to come back and try to kill her. But he still has to practically force her to leave, at which point she gets serious by taking off her blazer and shirt to reveal a tank top.

The Warden's son comes to visit which seems odd, but maybe they let kids go to the Wardens office. I don't know. Do you really want to risk your son coming into the prison even when there aren't zombies? It's not like prisoners like the warden.

The sound is inconsistant, with dialogue soft and then other times way too loud. I was constantly turning the volume up and down. Also when the zombie attack starts, there is a siren that goes on and on and on and starts to drive you insane.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Santa Claus and the Ice Cream Bunny (1972)

A few years ago my friends found this vhs at a yard sale. We were speechless upon viewing it. It's randomness is astonishing. So if you plan to watch it, go for the Riff Trax version as otherwise your head might explode.

Santa and his sleigh become stuck on a beach in Florida. There's no explanation of where the reindeers went, but poor Santa's got to find a way to get back to the North Pole. He uses his psychic powers to call all children in the area to help him. They try to hitch different kinds of animals to his sleigh, which makes no sense since none of the animals can fly.

After the failure to get Santa home, he sits the children down to tell them the story of Thumbelina. This reads more like an advertisement for Pirate World amusement park which is where a girl views the Thumbelina display and imagines herself as part of it. In the middle of all this nonsense, Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn show up and hide in the bushes. What the heck?!?!

After most of the movie is consumed by Thumbelina and her mole friends, a heavily sweating Santa finishes his story just in time for the Ice Cream Bunny to drive up in his olde tyme fire engine filled with children. Honestly, can you imagine letting your child hang off an old fire truck while some guy in a bunny suit tries to see out of a massive oversized bunny head? I'm surprised he could see anything at all, let alone the road. Oh yeah, and he doesn't have any ice cream so no idea where they came up with the name. Pure madness.

Don't Look Up (2009)

Marcus heads to Transylvania to remake a movie that was never completed on the same set where tragedy occurred in the 1920s. Shortly after the crew arrive, strange things start to happen, people disappear, and an old man with a huge tumor on his neck says he's been waiting for another film to be made on this set. Marcus has visions, there are accidents on the set, people start dying, and nothing makes much sense. Plus there are disgusting swarms of flies whenever there is paranormal activity.

Hybrid (2007)

When security guard Aaron loses his eyesight while saving a coworker from an explosion, he is chosen to be the first human recipient of a new eye transplant procedure. Not sure why a secret government experiment would chose a civilian for their first test subject, but they do. Aaron is given wolf eyes which works well in the sense that he can see again, plus he has great night vision. But it's not so great in that he starts acting wolfy. Who knew that eyeballs had such power? He develops a craving for raw meat, starts having vision of wolves and buffalo, and doesn't seem to have any control over some of his wolfy actions which causes trouble.

The government is working on this project to give soldiers night vision. Aaron escapes from the hospital before they can study him which leads the military to hunt him down. While Aaron is running around the streets, he meets a Native American woman who is angry about the military experiments on animals. She recognizes Aaron's eyes as those of the injured wolf she had tried to save and decides to help him.

It all boils down to half the film being padded by Aaron running with wolves. There is even a scene right out of Little House on the Prairie where Aaron happily (and awkwardly) runs through a field with a pack of wolves. Nothing really happens once the premise is set up.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Night of the Demons (2009)

Angela throws a Halloween party in the Broussard Mansion, which has been uninhabited for fifty years. Legend has it that many years ago six people disappeared during a Halloween party, but that doesn't concern the partygoers who pay $10 a head to get in.

After the cops arrive to break up the party, Angela, drug dealer Colin, and a small group of friends find themselves stuck at the mansion because the outside gates are locked.

They head back into the mansion and while exploring the basement discover a secret room in the basement which has skeletons lying on the floor. When Angela attempts to steal a gold tooth, the skeleton bites her. Bad news because the bite makes Angela into a demon, even though she usually appears normal.

The demons need to possess seven bodies before daylight and coincidentally, there are seven people left in the building. From this point forward, the movie consists of the demons trying to kill everyone. You'll spend the remainder of the movie wondering why they didn't just climb over the fence once the killings began.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Monster High (1989)

This one made me realize I should really check out the trailer before I watch some of these movies. Alien rap duo Gloom and Doom steal the sphere of imprisonment (which looks like a basketball), bring it to Earth, and accidentally activate the doomsday device.

The sphere contains Mr. Armageddeon. Other than his name, he is completely non-threatening since he resembles an out of shape Liberace and has a pseudo Satan voice. He brings a gargoyle to life, looks through the high school yearbook for hot chicks, and wears a knee length sparkly coat.

While Mr. Armageddeon stalks the hallways turning students into different types of monsters, Gloom and Doom bumble around trying to get him back into the sphere. Some high school students, who appear to be in their twenties, sort of figure out what is happening and try to save the planet.

I would think this movie was for ten year olds, as that seems to be the level of comedy, but there is nudity. It's a bad comedy and fairly painful to watch.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Demonic (2005)

aka Forest of the Damned

The movie opens with a couple parked in the middle of nowhere on a dirt road. There is a horrible screeching noise, which would make me say "I'm outta here" and drive away immediately. But this couple has other ideas and gets out of the car. The boyfriend heads toward a naked lady with big pointy teeth and makes out with her until she kills him. Ah yes, can't start the movie without the requisite random stupid people to set the scene.

A group of friends goes on a trip in an old van that doesn't start easily and gets lost. When they stop for directions, an old man provides exposition and tells them to stay out of the woods. They proceed to drive into the woods and accidentally hit a girl.

Since their phones can't get any reception and the van won't start, two of them stay with the injured girl, while the other three split up to look for help. The single guy stumbles upon some naked nymphs swimming. Being a horrible person, he promptly forgets the injured girl, takes off his clothes, and joins the naked ladies.

The couple ends up at an old farmhouse owned by Tom Savini, who captures the couple and later brings back their friend on a hook. He knows about the nymphs because they killed his parents, but for some reason he stays there, and god only knows why he dragged their friend back to the house on a hook.

The couple escape and are then captured again when they try to find a way to escape. They decide upon a tractor, which is strange since those aren't the fastest vehicles. Probably better to walk, but it's too late since Savini has handcuffed them in the barn to wait for the nymphs.

The nymphs show up and start making out with the girl's boyfriend. She doesn't say anything. What is it about this movie that when naked chicks start kissing their boyfriend the girls do and say nothing? She ends up slicing her wrists to use the blood as a lubricant to get her handcuffs off.

One year later, she's still wandering the woods. An author doing research for a new horror novel drives the dirt road at night, and picks her up. Oh yes, lots of people go missing in these woods. So I decided to drive around the remote dirt roads in the middle of the night all by myself and pick up strangers. Duhrrrrr ,do you really think this will end well?

Betty Blowtorch: And Her True Life Adventures (2003)

I was not familiar with Betty Blowtorch, but figured I'd watch this since I'd heard good things about it. The filmmaker traveled with them and shot footage of them for several years. So we see a band very comfortable and open with the camera since they are dealing with someone they know. There is plenty of live footage, interviews with the band, studio footage, and interviews with those who worked with them.

The documentary provides background on how the band started from the ashes of another band. Bianca became the singer by default after the previous singer walked out in the middle of a tour. As the film progresses, she goes from awkward as the center of attention to having a good stage presence.

The focus is mostly on Bianca due to her demise in a car accident. Combine that with the sad story of abuse in her childhood and overcoming a drug addiction, and even if you've never heard of the band, you'll really feel for loss of Bianca. She's very engaging and you can't help but like her as she shows off her collection of lunch boxes and gives the interviewer a tour of her home.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Epoch (2001)

A mystery monolith appears in Bhutan and brings a boy back from the dead. This causes the US military to request the help of a consultant known for his hunches to try to figure out what the heck this giant thing is.

There is friction with China, who wants in on the action and does not like the US taking control of the object. If anyone dies, the monolith is able to heal them. This takes quite a bit of tension out of the movie, such as when two of the main characters are trying to dive out of the spinning monolith and have to land on a narrow platform. Really? Because if you miss and plummet to your death, the thing will heal you, so why all the fuss?

Dr. Chopper (2005)

After the death of his mother, Nicholas and his friends head up to an old cabin that had belonged to his mother. On the way, they run into a creepy old guy on a motorcycle. Unbeknownst to them, this is Dr. Chopper who, along with his nurses, disappeared twenty years ago after the police found dead bodies in his lab.

Dr. Chopper needs body parts to continue to stay young. So he relocated to a small town where the nearest thing to law enforcement is Park Ranger Terrell, who doesn't have much of an interest in life and runs away when confronted by a naked woman with a knife. Granted she just killed someone, but she is much smaller than him. Also the town is known for people disappearing in the woods, but other than the large volume of missing persons flyers, nothing seems to be done about it.

What I want to know is why do people always decide to take long trips to stay at mystery properties they've never heard of that they inherit? No one has lived there for twenty years, but hey everyone, lets go stay at the cabin. No thought as to what shape it's in, whether there are squatters there, or it's a hangout for criminals, local youth, or a gang.

Also the country store has tons of flyers for kids who have disappeared in the woods. Plus an extremely annoying girl is looking for her girlfriend who has just disappeared. Yet they have no qualms about going into the middle of nowhere to stay at the mystery cabin? What is wrong with people?!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Aaah! Zombies!! (2007)

aka Wasting Away

After a failed military experiment whose purpose is to make super soldiers, a barrel of toxic chemicals falls out of a truck on the way to the disposal area. It ends up behind a bowling alley where several teenagers mistake it for part of the nights deliveries and end up consuming the toxin which has been mixed with ice cream.

The teens get sick and become zombies, but they don't realize it because from their point of view, nothing has changed. So they can't understand why everyone runs away from them.

They meet a Private who tells them that the other people who are running are infected and that he has become a super soldiers. The Private is looking for a cure and seeks out a top military official.

The concept of a movie told from the zombies point of view is interesting. When the film is in color, it is what the zombies are seeing, and when it is in black and white, that is what the uninfected see. The group doesn't know that they are zombies and there is some humor in seeing them talking among themselves while all everyone else hears is typical zombies sounds.

While it has comedic overtones, it's not very funny. The only time I laughed out loud was when the Private decided to infiltrate a Mexican restaurant disguised as a waiter saying, "I've been trained in espionage." Seeing a zombie wearing a sombrero, shuffling along with a tray of food, interspersed with the footage from his own point of view where he thinks he is blending in made me laugh.

Once the zombies decide to find a place to be free, that is when the film totally lost me. The dialogue was very contrived and like any other movie where a minority is trying to overcome persecution. So the ending was not satisfactory and it wasn't all that funny, but I liked the idea and did enjoy the first two thirds of the film.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Murder Game (2006)

A group of friends play a game where one is the killer and the others try to avoid being victims. The killer is chosen by drawing a card so it is not obvious to the others who has been designated the killer. The game ends either when the killer has murdered them all, or someone figures out the killers identity.

When their parents ban them from playing in the house, they decide to play in a self storage warehouse which doesn't have overnight guards. They sneak in, hide in a storage locker until the place closes, and then begin their game.

They stash their cell phones in a locker so anyone who is killed can not tip off the others as to the killers identity. Everyone is having fun until people start dying for real. There is a killer on the loose and they're locked in the building until the doors open at 6 am.

When the group proposed playing in the storage facility by saying, "...think of all the places to hide...", I thought uh, okay - corridors, stairways, what else? Turns out that not all the storage lockers at this place are locked, so that provides many more places to hide.

The teenagers all look like they are college aged, except perhaps the girl who plays Lucy who look like Corey Haim's little sister. The group sometimes plays it smart by deciding they need to stick together and hide quietly in a storage locker. But then they get dumb and decide to split up and leave the locker.

Overall this was far more enjoyable than I expected, especially for a low budget indie film. I was worried when I saw the preview, but it was a decent film. The ending wasn't the greatest, but otherwise not bad.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

The Hole (2001)

Students at a British prep school are spending a few days on a field trip to end the semester. Four students report that they are going home early and will not be going. Since their parents think they are on the trip, the kids plan to spend the next few days partying in an old bomb shelter near the school.

Geeky Martin has a key to the door of the shelter and locks them in, vowing to return in three days when the field trip is over. But he never comes back and the group is stuck inside with no way out, and hardly any food or liquid.

Almost three weeks later, Liz appears out of nowhere in a state of shock and is taken to the hospital where she tells her story to a psychiatrist. Her three friends are found dead in the bomb shelter and Martin is brought in for questioning. Martin claims he knows nothing about what happened and that Liz is lying that he was involved in any way.

The first half of the movie covers Liz's story of what happened, which doesn't make a lot of sense. Why would you be locked into the shelter? Why not just shut the door? Why do the police take the word of the only surviving person? Wouldn't they consider that person as a possible suspect?

The second half of the film deals with what has actually happened. But the biggest question I have is where did these kids get the key to the bomb shelter? It's one thing to find an old shelter that is unlocked, but to actually have the key? Why would anyone let themselves be locked in is beyond me.

Food of the Gods (1976)

Three football players go hunting on an island, run into giant wasps, and one man is stung to death. The survivors end up at the Skinners, where a greedy businessman and a female biologist have come to purchase the rights to what the Skinners call Food of the Gods - a thick white substance that comes out of the ground that is being fed to their chickens.

Whatever this glop is, the chickens have grown to be bigger than an automobile. Other animals and insects on the island are also ingesting it and increasing in size. Thus the problem with the giant wasps and the soon to be problem with the giant rats.

Close ups of cute little rats swarming a Barbie sized camper is adorable not threatening. Then when the real camper is used, they switch to rat puppet heads which are also adorable in a different way. Scary? No, not in the slightest.

So basically you can sum it all up by saying Marjoe Gortner and some cute looking giant rat puppets run around on an island. A businessman sets himself up to be mauled by a giant animal to teach him the error of his greedy ways and everyone panics.

The Keep (1983)

During World War II, Nazis assigned to guard a pass in a small town in Romania take over an old fortress, aka the keep. When they find crosses in the walls that seem to be made of silver, a few of the men decide to remove them in hope of making money.

The removal of the first cross opens a portal in the keep which releases an evil presence who starts killing the Nazis. When the SS rolls into town, they believe that the Nazi deaths are due to the townfolk and threaten to kill them if the deaths don't stop.

There is also a professor and his daughter who are brought to the keep to help the Nazis. Plus a stranger who knows what the keep holds and makes it his job to try to contain the evil within it. The evil being, Molasar, is kind of spooky and looks cool. The film is more suspense than horror.

Werewolf Hunter (2004)

aka Romasanta: The Werewolf Hunter

Oh Julian Sands, what supernatural being won't you play? In Spain in the 1850s, bodies are turning up and appear to have been killed by an animal, possibly a wolf. Traveling soap salesman Manuel Romasanto drives his wagon through the countryside and charms the people he meets, especially the ladies. But appearances can be deceiving as Romasanto believes himself a werewolf. He kills the people he charms and takes fat from his victims to make his soap. Blurghhh!

When Barbara's older sister and niece disappear after leaving with Romasanto, Barbara gradually comes to the realization they have been killed. She then begins her pursuit of Romasanto with the help of the authorities.

This isn't so much a horror film as perhaps a drama with horror overtones. It's based on a real man who claimed to be a werewolf when caught for a series of killings. The movie is story based, not action based, and if you want to see lots of werewolf, you'll be disappointed.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Platoon of the Dead (2009)

Kids messing around with the supernatural inadvertently start a war after playing with a ouija board (!?!?) which opens a door to another world. An evil thing comes through the door and has so much hate that it starts raising the dead. Oooo-kay.

After a zombie attack on their unit, the three surviving men take refuge in a house that they later discover contains three women. So much for being good soliers since they didn't even notice the trap door in the floor which concealed the women.

The house turns out to be where the kids held their seance and the zombies are heading there to find the last remaining kid. The zombies wear gas masks, thus avoiding the need for any make up.

This is an extremely low budget film shot on video with a score that sounds like it was done on a keyboard by someone who watched a lot of 1950s horror and murder mysteries. Unfortunately it is totally inappropriate for this movie.

The military have super clean, new looking military outfits and toy guns. The acting and script are rudimentary at best. This was very painful to watch.

Monday, November 29, 2010

The Zombie Diaries

Shot in nausea vision, this point of view documentary style film combines camera movement enducing motion sickness with video diaries of survivors after a virus outbreak turns the population into zombies.

In the first segment a news crew goes to a farmhouse in a small town, but no one is around. They discover London has been quarantined. As there are no pubs in the town and their car has broken down, they head back to the farm house hoping they can spend the night. Of course there is zombie action, some of which involves the group running around at night while the footage bounces up and down, and is lit by a flashlight. In other words, you can't see what is going on.

A month later, the second diary entry picks up with a different group of three young people who head into a deserted town in order to get groceries and parts for their malfunctioning radio. Zombies show up and the group must try to escape.

Lastly we check in on a farm in the middle of the country. It is night and we can't see what is going on due to the scene being lit with a flashlight. These survivors are the biggest and best organized group. They have guns and systematically kill any zombies in the area. They even do sweeps to see if there are zombies around, instead of waiting for them to show up. Then they dispose of the bodies they kill

One lady is obsessed with no one tracking any zombie blood into the house, and a recent addition to the group proves to be a troublemaker. He later turns out to be a total sicko, but those who discover this keep it under wraps until they can figure out how to deal with him. Seriously, there are some people that will need to be eliminated when you're trying to survive after the zombie apocaplyse, and those are people who are a danger to living.

The three kids from the previous segment show up again and get careless. Seriously? They've survived this long and then they do something so stupid? Doesn't make any sense.

Artifacts (2007)

A group of friends are being killed by their dopplegangers, who appear when a strange noise is heard. Kate figures it out after reviewing video tape of her friend from the night of her death in which her friends double appears, and by seeing her own doppleganger.

Kate has a run in with her ex-boyfriend Mike's double, but figures out it's not Mike and runs away. When she sees the real Mike, she tells him what she suspects. He doesn't believe her at first, but after another of their friends dies and both see the double, Mike is convinced.

A metallic artifact is found under the ribs of all their dead friends, which leads Kate to believe she and Mike are implanted with them as well.

Kate uses the internet to look up bodies implanted with an "artefact" and easily finds just what she needs. This leads to a meeting with the man who wrote the paper on artifacts in bodies. He informs her that there is an experiment going on run by people in high places. How do you react when you are facing yourself? How do you differentiate between whats real and a copy? Well, I'm not sure how having your doppleganger kill you will provide valuable data for research, but then again I didn't set up the research parameters and we never know their thesis.

While the movie did build tension and I got really drawn into the film, the ending had me saying, are you friggin' kidding me?!?! There are too many plot holes for any satisfaction, no resolution or even a hint at a resolution. Also just as a side note, the girl on the dvd cover is not in the movie and no one has crazy yellow eyes or cracked skin either.

Friday, November 26, 2010

It's Alive (2008)

When Lenore becomes pregnant during her final semester at grad school, she quits to go live with her boyfriend Frank and his younger brother. After going to the hospital in pain, doctors tell Lenore that they will have to deliver the baby early as it has doubled in size since the last appointment.

During the delivery, the baby and mother are fine, but everyone else in the operating room is killed. The police want to talk to Lenore to see if she can remember anything that might help them catch the killer, but she is uncooperative.

Once the baby comes home, Frank is oblivious to it's odd behavior, his younger brother is scared of it, and Lenore is just plain annoying and stupid. She finds the baby outside eating a pigeon and her reaction is, "No! No! Don't eat that!" How about wondering how the baby got out of it's crib, made it outside and got hold of the pigeon?

Also when she finds the baby gnawing on a dead bunny in it's crib, she takes the bunny away and doesn't say a word to the baby. When the psychiatrist is killed in an unbelievably violent scene, she just drives his car into the lake. Yikes lady, no mention of any of this to your husband? Eeeek!

Zombie Strippers (2008)

The military are sent into a building infested with zombies to test an electromagnetic surge which will knock the zombies out, making it easier to combat them. The problem is that the zombies quickly wake up and one soldier is bitten in the ensuing chaos of trying to escape.

Realizing that he will be killed if anyone finds out he's infected, he runs off and ends up in the strip club next door where eventually he dies. After he attacks star stripper Kat, biting a hole in her neck, the club owner locks the zombie soldier in the basement. He won't call the cops since the club is operating illegally.

While trying to figure out what to do, Kat comes back to life, wanders onstage and the crowd goes wild. The guys go crazy for zombie strippers so some of the other girls decide that they want in on it. Management is all for it since they make tons of money with the zombies on stage.

The only flaw in the plan is that the girls keep eating the customers, whose bodies are locked in a cell in the basement. The cell fills to capacity, eventually the zombies are let out and carnage ensues.

The movie is mostly stripping and not so much zombies. Robert Englund is great as the germophobe club manager. You'll forget about the military plot until the end when the military shows up again. So basically the soldier is just an excuse to get the plot into the strip club.

I didn't particularly want to watch this, but it ended up being okay.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The Children (2008)

Two sisters and their families gather for a holiday celebration. One of the children seems a little under the weather and kind of creepy. Soon the other children seem to have caught the virus and their knowing glances soon lead to a killing spree.

The adults seem clueless and make stupid decisions even when they see their children doing disturbing things, like playing with the corpse of their dead father in the tent. Seriously, normal kids are not going to drag a dead body into a tent and stick their hands in it.

Also when cornered, I can understand a parent being reluctant or even refusing to hurt their own child. But have a modicum of self preservation and at least try to protect yourself. Don't just sit there.

It was a mistake to not explain why one sisters husband took off in the jeep without her. The explanation was in a scene that was one of the special features. Without this interchange, there is a huge hole in the script and makes no sense. Also there is talk about having around sixty children as extras and scenes of them getting spooky makeup. Huh? There aren't a bunch of kids or any spooky makeup in the film. Again, big mistake to leave this out as it shows that it is something much bigger than just an isolated virus.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Cross Bones (2005)

Red Blood, the most vicious pirate alive, slaughters his own crew and finds he can't control his ship by himself. After being captured and imprisoned by the British, (who all die from yellow fever), an old pirate shows up out of nowhere and releases Red Blood. After being led to the treasure, Red Blood absconds with it and kills his rescuer.

Needing a place to bury his treasure until he can return, Redblood rows to an island inhabited by natives who throw the blood curse on him and kill him. Bad choice, Red Blood.

In the present day, a group of stereotypes, including the worst rapper ever named Greedy G, have been cast on a reality tv show. Coincidentally they are going to the same island to compete for buried treasure.

The group is forbidden to go to the other side of the island, but two contestants decide to cross the boundary line. One guy mysterioiusly cuts his hand when he goes behind a rock. Next thing you know Red Blood is chewing on the kids neck and blood is flying everywhere. Soon everyone is fighting for their lives as a makeup covered pirate tries to kill them.

I saw this movie years ago, but couldn't remember what it was. I wanted to see it again because I remembered it as being ridiculous and yup, it definitely was. The bad acting, the silly looking pirate wearing eyeliner, the obnoxious producer, the horrible rapping of Greedy G, and the confusing reanimation of Red Blood are just the tip of the iceberg.

The reality show only has one cameraman who wanders through the undergrowth trying to capture footage of the group. But the island is also pre-rigged with cameras. This is great, except I'm not sure how many cameras they would need to view the entire island. Plus the biggest issue with this premise is that the supposed stationary cameras tied in the trees can zoom, pan, and often appear to be handheld since they are not always steady.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

30 Days of Night: Dark Days (2010)

In the year since her husbands death, Stella has spent her time trying to warn others of the existence of vampires. She uses her lectures as an opportunity to kill the few vampires who show up to keep an eye on her. Although she is mostly met with derision and laughter, she continues informing people of the vampire menace in an attempt to deal with her grief.

In Los Angeles, she is sought out by a small group who have also lost loved ones to the vampires. Stella reluctantly joins them as they plan out their revenge by attempting to kill the queen of the vampires.

I enjoyed the first movie, except for the ending which seemed like they ran out of ideas. But this one was missing the tension of the first due to the lack of isolation and normal periods of night. It's not too difficult to think that the group can survive until daylight for one night.

The Queen appeared to be based on Elizabeth Bathory due to the bathing in blood. But the character is annoying and not scary at all.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Dark Tower (1987)

Detective Randall is called to a skyscraper to investigate a series of what appear to be accidental deaths. Randall concludes that there is a spirit in the building and recruits a paranormal investigator and a psychic to help him figure out why the activity centers around architect Carolyn Page. That's pretty much all there is to the movie.

Watch for near the end when Carolyn is running away from the spirit and loses a shoe. Later when clomping down the stairs, she has two shoes again and they are a different color.

Never Cry Werewolf (2008)

When Jared moves into the house next door, everyone is enamored with him except Loren who thinks something isn't right. Jared is very charming but also pretty creepy since he is way too interested in high school student Loren. Also he has hairy palms and a spooky dog.

Loren soon comes to believe that Jared is a werewolf. She actually puts it together really quickly, which is outside the norm for most films.

Everyone dismisses her suspicions except for her brothers friend Steven who has a crush on her. The two head down to the gun store to try to enlist the help of Redd Tucker, the host of a hunting show, who is doing a personal appearance to promote his tv show.

This is basically Fright Night with a werewolf. It's not as good, but it was fun to watch.

Ninja Avenger (1982)

A lady ninja does several hits to pay back a woman who saved her from some thugs years ago. After the job is done, the woman decides to kill the lady ninja so no one can connect her to the murders.

The movie is dubbed with the typical voices you would expect, and it's not all that interesting.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Kick Ass (2010)

Dave, a high school student who reads comic books, decides to become a superhero and invents an alter ego named Kick-Ass. He heads out to patrol the streets and quickly gets in over his head.

When a video of him taking on several thugs becomes a media sensation, Dave finds himself targeted by the mob who blame him for killing some of their men. In fact the men were killed by a father-daughter team of super heros who are far more deadly and well trained than Dave. Let's face it Dave, has no training and no crime fighting skills. Dave's exploits, as well as the other super heros, make for some tense moments.

The trailers for this film make it look more like a comedy than it actually is. I think that led to my being slightly disappointed in the direction of the story and it's resolution.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Stay Alive (2006)

After a friend is murdered, his video game junkie friends decide to play an unreleased underground video which was the last thing he played before he died. The game involves exploring the castle of Elizabeth Bathory aka the Blood Countess, known for bathing in the blood of young girls. What the group doesn't realize is that if you die in the game, you die the same way in real life.

As the kids start dying, the police begin to suspect the survivors. Eventually the game starts playing itself and the survivors try to locate where on the plantation Bathory was walled into a tower and left to die. How lucky that live live near the plantation because otherwise they'd most certainly be doomed.

While Bathory was a real person, the story is not historically accurate and the setting for her home is the US, not Transylvania. But I guess we can't have the kids trying to figure out how to get overseas, can we.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Ancient Evil: Scream of the Mummy (1999)

When an Aztec mummy is discovered in Mexico, it is shipped to a professor whose six of her archaeology students plan to study it. When it arrives, they find that the mummy appears to be wrapped in Ace bandages and is very clean.

One of the archaeology students is a lunkhead who steals a bracelet off the mummy to give to a girl he has a crush on. At first she is upset that he stole an artifact, but then she tells him it was so sweet for him to steal it for her. Huh? She'll be a credit to her field.

There is also a creepy nerdy student named Norman. Norman is the last remaining Aztec High Priest and plans on bringing the mummy back to life and exacting revenge. Unfortunately it's hard to take Norman seriously since he's a pasty, scrawny white boy whose priest outfit looks like a cheap Halloween costume.

Once the mummy is brought back to life, it shambles slowly around. Some of the bandages on it's face have fallen away and the one left under it's nose looks like a large handlebar mustache. The only way it is able to kill people is that its victims do not try to get away. Lucky for the mummy, the students decide to have a party where the mummy is being stored so it doesn't even have to go looking for victims.

Even though this is supposed to be a college campus, the mummy appears to be wandering around a house rather than a school. Also the area that is supposed to be a classroom looks like a greenhouse where someone has put metal folding chairs, a chalkboard, and a podium.

Norman states his reason for killing the other students is that everyone picked on him and made fun of him, which is totally untrue. The only person who hassled him was the lunkhead jock, and the other kids always told the jock to stop because Norman was an okay guy. Guess they feel pretty stupid now.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Gargoyle: Wings of Darkness (2004)

aka Gargoyles

A cgi gargoyle is sealed in the ground in 1500s Romania. Cut to the present where an earthquake breaks the seal, releasing the demon.

The CIA is in Romania investigating a kidnapping. It is solved and never spoken of again. But the kidnapper ends up impaled on a spire on top of an old church where kids hang out. So the police figure it might be the kids... who dropped the kidnapper onto the spire... from way up in the air. Uh, right.

As the CIA try to solve the murder of the kidnapper, the gargoyle grabs criminals off roof tops and waits for it's cave full of eggs to hatch. Michael Pare tries to solve the case and stop the gargoyle, and everyone lives happily ever after.

In Search of Lovecraft (2008)

Just couldn't take it, even though my friend is interested in anything Lovecraft. But this was too painful for us to watch.

Black Water (2007)

A vacationing husband, his wife and his wife's sister decide to take a boat tour in the swamps to do a bit of fishing. The regular tour has already left, so the sketchy tour guide at the dock says he can take them out for a private tour.

The group agrees and deep in the swamp, their boat is capsized by an alligator who then kills their guide. The three survivors manage to get up into a tree on the riverbank. As the shock begins to wear off, they start arguing about what to do next.

The boat is upside down in the middle of the swamp and they can't sit in the trees forever. The idea of waiting for help is tossed out after they realize no one knows where they are. The idea of walking from tree to tree is also nixed when they discover it only leads to an even bigger waterway.

Eventually we got tired of watching them all sit in a tree arguing. The girls are extremely annoying and you'll want to slap them. If I was in a different mood, it may have been an okay movie, but I just didn't feel like watching people do nothing.

Red Water (2003)

John, who used to work for an oil company, is a fisherman whose money problems lead to the bank threatening to repossess his boat. When he is approached by his ex-wife to assess a potential drilling site in the swamps, he grudgingly takes the job for the paycheck.

In an incredible coincidence, the drilling platform just happens to be right next to where criminals are diving to retrieve millions of dollars of drug money that has been dumped in the swamp. A clash between the two groups ensues. Oh and did I mention there have been body parts showing up in the swamps due to the huge shark that has adapted to fresh water? And in an even bigger coincidence, this shark is also in this area?

The cgi shark is something I've seen in another movie recently. I wish I could remember which one, but I've definitely seen it in another shark movie.

The characters spouted some very odd lines which made no sense. Also from the cover you'd expect the shark to be a much bigger part of this, but the film is fairly free from shark scenes.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Reeker (2005)

Five college students on a ride share to the biggest rave of the year discover that one of the group has stolen a drug dealers supply of ecstasy. They consider leaving him in the middle of nowhere, but instead drive back to the diner where they stopped earlier.

The diner is mysteriously deserted and their car mysteriously dies, so they go next door to the motel which also turns out to be empty. The group decides to stay put for the night since they can't get any cell reception, the motel phone is out of order, and they have no other options.

Soon members of the group start disappearing and there is a foul stench in the air. It's not clear what is happening and as the group tries to survive, they inexplicably do some stupid things. When you get to the twist ending, you will throw your hands up in frustration.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Evil Unleashed: The Mummy (2003)

In fake ancient Egypt which looks like somewhere behind a hotel in Nevada, Nefretesia commits suicide in a bid for eternal life. Cut to the present day where an archaeology dig has unearthed her sarcophagus buried only a few feet below the surface.

When the professor touches it, he screams in pain. His assistants are then attacked by plastic scorpions to the face. The scorpions sit there unmoving until they appear to be pulled off by strings.

At the local community college, complete with community theater level acting, the small archaeology class decides to head to their professors office to check out the mummy. They ask if they can clean the artifacts, but are told no since there is a specific process and the items need to be handled carefully. Inexplicably the professor then hands them a sacrificial dagger to pass amongst themselves.

When the professor suggests chanting the Egyptian Ritual for Everlasting Life, everyone except one girl is all for it. She leaves as she senses there will be danger. The group chants and the mummy comes back to life. When the kids leave, an ancient artifact sticks to the bubblegum on the bottom of one guys sneaker. Really?

The mummy turns out to be Nefretesia. Sometimes she is dressed as a raggedy old skeleton faced mummy, but other times men see her as a sexy dancing lady holding a fake gold dagger which she plunges into their hearts.

When the girls figure out what is going on, they head for the Indian Burial Ground (yeah, that's right, you heard me correctly). It's supposed to be an hour away. They drive all night and then say it will take an hour to get there. There is another incident with an ancient artifact sticking to bubblegum on someone's shoe. Come on!! Once is bad enough, but twice?!

This is super low budget and it shows. Please take a look at these screen captures to gauge the true badness.

Here we see a dagger and necklace made out of the

Good god! It's a plastic scorpion attack!

Yup, that's one non-threatening little Mummy.

The mummy has monster hands.