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RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 24/7/2011 3:14:50 PM   
matty_b


Posts: 14555
Joined: 19/10/2005
From: Outpost 31 calling McMurtle.
I have a horrible feeling it was a dream.

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ORIGINAL: Cool Breeze
Mattyb is a shining example of what the perfect Empire Forum member is.


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Post #: 2551
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 24/7/2011 3:21:15 PM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
This could be a horror film. A man dreams of a horror film and asks people on a film site to find it for him, the search for this fictional film leads to a portal to the other world opening where all the horrors you dream come true and haunt the dreamer.

You're going to be haunted by zombie-car-crash-comet-monster.

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Post #: 2552
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 24/7/2011 3:25:14 PM   
matty_b


Posts: 14555
Joined: 19/10/2005
From: Outpost 31 calling McMurtle.


_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Cool Breeze
Mattyb is a shining example of what the perfect Empire Forum member is.


(in reply to rawlinson)
Post #: 2553
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 24/7/2011 3:33:59 PM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
And now my dreams will be haunted. 

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Post #: 2554
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 3/8/2011 10:21:47 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr
 GIMLI:     and ALSO SPOILERS FOR THIS WEEKS SUPERNATURAL
 
I do not know if you watch it or not, but you should try out this weeks Supernatural:  They doing a take on The X Files, with intro and everything.....Its really good and I thought of you because of your love of Mulder and Scully!

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Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

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Post #: 2555
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 8/8/2011 1:09:02 AM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr



What's It All About?
 
Shy, introverted Laura and her jaded father have promised to clean an old friend’s property in order for it to be sold. Travelling deep into the hostile, unforgiving landscape of rural Uruguay, they are to spend the night in an isolated, run down cottage. With no civilisation for hundreds of miles and no electricity or modern conveniences within the property, Laura begins to dread the on coming night. As darkness prevails her father investigates a strange noise from the above floor. When he doesn’t return, Laura has nothing but fear to console her. But She’s not alone. Something is waiting in the shadows, something that knows her worst nightmares.

 The Hughes Verdict


Before I wander off into the realms of criticism I need to point out that The Silent House is an effective Uruguayan film that will delight fans of old fashioned horror.  This harks back to the good days of such films like The Haunting in which the scares come from tension and imagination than the need to sell out to CGI effects that lets be honest do not really add anything to the experience.  Every fan of the genre watches a horror film to be scared, not to sit back and go all starry eyed at the latest special 3D effects to come hitting them from the screen.  The Silent House is a film that will get under your skin on many occasions, it will also leave you panting for breath at times as you cling on to the arm of your chair in hope that nothing jumps out of the dark shadows.  The film is good horror readers, but the truth is, it could have been a whole lot better.

The story is based on true events that happened in the 1940's and the big gimmick and selling point of the whole film is that all of its 78 minutes of running time is shot in one continuous take.  Just writing that makes me realise just what a special achievement this was but then there are a few tiny moments when the film screen goes blank which may make the sceptical of you think that this claim may not be all true.  Filmed on a professional Canon DSLR camera, director Gustavo Hernández's 
pulls of a remarkable beautiful film that needs to be watched for that alone.  To create a film where we the viewer take this voyeuristic trip of real time horror is a mouth watering prospect and you can not help but get sucked in right from the off.

Its here while the credits are on screen where we meet Laura (Florencia Colucci) and her dad (Gustavo Alonso) who arrive at a rundown cottage in the middle of a nowhere in order to repair the place since its owner (Abel Tripaldi) has put the place up for sale.  Once settled inside, night falls and the duo decide to catch up on some sleep and start the heavy work in the morning, everything is quiet and calm until the Dad falls asleep in the chair and Laura hears a sound that she at first believes is coming from the outside but soon the noise gets  louder and then louder and it seems to be coming from the room right above her head!  In panic she wakes her father who goes the staircase to check it out, soon Laura hears the cries from her father, a thud on the floor, and a dragging noise and for the next 60 minutes Laura is trapped in a house where things go bump in the night!

                                                   

Any Film Fan who wants to see art at work and when I mean art, I am talking about outstanding brilliance then you really need to see this film.  The camera work is totally spell blinding, its a real joy and privilege to watch a master at the top of his game and full credit and applause goes to cinematographer Pedro Luque who does things that you will marvel at.  In this day of age, doing a ghost story without effects is hard, doing one in a film where there are no cuts and just a continuous shot is near impossible but Luque uses bathroom mirrors and special angles that has to be seen to believe.  There is one scene where Laura is standing holding the light and all of sudden we see a figure behind her, then in a blink of an eye its gone.  Really good sir and hats off to you.  The gimmick also serves well because we share this journey with the character right from the off.  We get sucked into this nightmare and the tension it creates is very special and for the majority of the running time it serves up more chills than the much popular and glossy American haunting house blockbuster Insidious and for all those put off my subtitles, then take my advice.  Laura is the main focal character and much of the film is of her on her own in the house trying to survive.  There are hardly no subtitles to speak off, so this is a perfect starter point for those fans who just can not be bothered to read!

So, that is all the good points and now readers its here you can feel a but coming!.........

Despite all its best intentions and some downright good scares, The Silent House fails to offer anything new and despite the short running time, the film replays the same scenes over and over and for me it got a bit tiresome.  Yes it was great to see the first couple of really good scares but twenty minutes later and we still see Laura holding the lamp going either back up the staircase or down and that became very frustrating.  The plot never moves on from the start, it seems to get stuck in this loop where there is no direction and fans have a good reason to complain.

Its the plot that brings down the achievements of the film.  There is nothing much to speak of and half way through the watch you will start to want to know what the heck is going on.  I like my horrors to be covered in mystery and intrigue but when we are offered nothing it can become very frustrating and just when we seem to be heading into a home stretch and things start to become clearer, the film offers an absurd twist that damages the whole watch.  I really could not believe that the makers went towards this path and for that reason alone, The Silent House is a film that needs to be seen for its remarkable direction but for its plot, its not a patch on the much superior The Orphanage!
 
                                                                       3 OUT OF 5

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(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2556
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 8/8/2011 5:07:37 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr


What's it all about?

One Morning in New England, 1940, the entire population of Friar New Hampshire - 572 people - walked together up a winding mountain trail and into the wilderness. They left behind their clothes, their money, all of their essentials. Even their dogs were abandoned, tied to posts and left to starve. No One knows why. A search party dispatched by the U.S. Army eventually discovered the remains of nearly 300 of Friar's evacuees. Many had frozen to death. Others were cruelly and mysteriously slaughtered. The bodies of the remaining citizens are still unaccounted for. Over the years, a quiet cover-up operation managed to weave the story of Friar into the stuff of legends and backwoods fairy tales. The town has slowly repopulated, but the vast wilderness is mostly untracked.  Now a group of researchers desperate to discover the truth in what happened enter the backwoods to follow the yelowbrickroad but with this path the gang quickly realise that there is no place like home......

 THE HUGHES VERDICT
 
Sometimes you just watch a film where you know everyone involved just tried to damn hard.

Looking at the title, many may believe that this is a somewhat horror sequel from the land of Oz, where Dorothy has now grown up, probably in a mental asylum after having a breakdown due to her memories of the Tin man, Scarecrow and the Lion.  Having been convinced that what happened to her when she was over the rainbow was nothing but a dream, she has spent all her young life on drugs, trying to banish the memories of that green witch until of course one stormy night while in her room, she finds out that it was all real due to the head of the lion under her bed sheets and a message that the witch is back and its time for revenge!

Ok I have gone way off track here but the clever ploy by the makers of this horror is too use a phase so familiar with the classic family film.  Follow the Yellowbrickroad is a kind of wicked idea to use in a horror but like the tagline of the cover says, "This Road has no FairyTale ending!" 
Way back in 1940, in the entire townsfolk of Friar a huge number of five hundred and seventy-two men, women and children decided for no apparent reason to pack up their stuff and walk up a mountain trail in which they simply disappeared.  A US Army led search team went to look for them and found half the people dead, most had been butchered beyond belief.  The reason of what happened to this day remains unknown. Even the one survivor who survived the chaos  went completely mad before he could explain what happened and soon the eerie story went into an urban legend, told to a generation to another and while the rumours spread, the trail which they followed became lost, no one ever followed the YellowBrickRoad again and it became one of the greatest ghost stories ever told.

Cut to the now and a bunch of historical researchers led by Teddy (Michael Laurino) are determined to find out the truth and where the original trail lays so they can follow it and document anything weird that may happen.  Armed with cameras, the gang set off but soon they realise the danger they have put themselves, when music can be heard from within the deep of the woods, its the music that brings a descent of madness within the group, the members star to lose their minds, any hope of turning back are dashed because there is no escape and when frustration boils over to anger, blood is shed and here is where the real horror begins!

On the surface YellowBrickRoad is my cup of tea.  A real old style horror where the plot is slow moving and mysterious, where the scares come with the tension and not with the need to throw buckets of blood at the screen.  Everything about the film sounds class, a concept full of promise and intrigue, yes you may be looking at nothing but a Blair Witch clone, but at the end of the day the entire plot sparkles with potential.  So why the negative vibe coming from my written words?

Simple really!  The film is just too damn boring.  You can marvel at the intent of character development and the deep thought of building up the scares, but when there are no scares of note then what can any horror fan do but just moan at what they are witnessing.  The lack of urgency come the second half of the film is one of the main flaws of the film and one that you simply can not shake.  Yes I understand the first hour in creating this ghost story and to be fair to the directing duo Jesse Holland and Andy Mitton they do create a wonderful back story, but when you have served us a slow burning start then you must deliver the chills for remaining film time and this is where the promising double act let themselves down.

As soon has the researchers hear this strange music then that should have been a cue for unspeakable horror but you just do not feel it.  Not once watching did I get swept away by feeling of danger, the gang hear the music, some weird shit happens and the gang talk about it.  The next night music plays again, the gang hear the music, some shit happens and the gang talk about it.  Its a routine that follows all the way up to its finale which I will get to in a minute but lets just say, I was not happy at all with the way the film ended.

In a ironic way, YellowBrickRoad may have worked better if it was a "found footage!" kind of horror.  By using the recent craze of "Camcorder Scares!", the film may have had the much needed boast of urgency it required.  I could not help but feel cold towards these people, a lack of a connection and to be truthful I did not really care what happened to them.  By going down the route of say "Blair Witch!" then maybe being among them I would have felt the danger more because all I felt was being an outsider who just wanted the film to end.

How and why I stayed to the end is beyond me, but I did and then I wished I didn't because it seems the writers had absolutely no idea how the story was going to end.  The climax is laughable, a real damp squid that rips off much better films.  It actually made me feel cheated because it left me feeling deeply unsatisfied.  I mean here I was watching this widely acclaimed film which I really wanted to love and I was having great difficulty with and the only thing that kept me going was the fact that it could end in a real shock to the system.  I have seen plenty of horrors that have been saved by a stunning climatic scene and I was deep in hope that this could be one of them so please forgive me by being mightily peed off by what is nothing more than a Sutter Cane rip off!

I really wanted to enjoy YellowBrickRoad its a film that is rich in atmosphere and Holland and Mitton show enough promise to suggest a future in the horror field, but despite some neat touches, the film fails in its horror elements.  Its nice to hark back to the days of 70's horror like they have here but you also need to strike a balance between slow build up and worthy scares and for that the film falls flat. 

Its a case of good try lads but a bronze finish!

                                                                             2 OUT OF 5


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Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

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(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2557
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 17/8/2011 6:54:24 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr



What's it all about?
 
Something diabolical is taking place on the set of "The Task," a new reality show in which players compete for a cash prize by enduring a night in an abandoned prison and completing a series of creepy tasks designed for maximum terror. As six college students explore, things start to go amiss. Locked in this decrepit, labyrinthine prison, the contestants and the production staff start to realize that the scary reality show they thought they were taping has become real horror.

 The Hughes Verdict!

Going by the trailers on this DVD, I guess this is the last of this years After Dark Originals.  All the collection of this new horror brand carry all the same trailers and the only time it changes is if you watching the particular film that is missing from the line up, so after the likes of Fertile Ground, Second's Apart, Husk and Prowl, the last film to enter into my horror juices is The Task, a film that I have to admit I had my eye on because the trailer made it look ever so good!

What we have here is all the ingredients of a sure fire hit, a concept that could not go wrong, a horror film that will pass the time away quite nicely.  I mean a premise set in a rundown prison where a bogyman haunts the corridors is a great one, if you chuck in a bunch of teens who believe they are playing a reality game show but at the end they are fighting for the lives and not the prize money on offer, then you have got a pretty good slash film.  Nothing really could go wrong!

Of course the stupidity on offer brings any hope of the 3 S's to a minimum.  What are the 3'S's?  Suspense! Scares! and Shit My Pants Scary!

The Task does not start well and continues in this manor all the way to the dumb ending that you will sigh with despair.  We start with an abduction of a group of teens who are subjected to a horrible ordeal where they think they have been kidnapped and probably on their way to their death.  When the blindfolds come off, they are told that it was all part of a new TV show called The Task in which they auditioned for a couple of months back.  Now I am not being funny, but if I was snatched from the street against my will, with thoughts of "I am going to die, please help me I am going to die!" ringing through my head, then I would not be too happy to find out it was all a prank.  But there are just no complaints from this bunch of thicko's, they just stand there and laugh it off and then get excited when told they have completed the first part of a chance of winning the prize money.

The lunacy continues when they are told in order to play the game they have to spend a night in an old abandoned prison (Like you do) where rumours of the old warden haunt the corridor and kill anyone who dares enter.  Now if you are told this, would you?  Even if you do not believe in the ghost world you would consider the proposal for a bit.  But these lot, well they just smile, giggle and walk in. 

"Yeah no problem me old geezer! Open the doors so we can get butchered like feck!"

Now if that sounds a bit british then its because most of the cast are from the land of Britain where the teens on show have a day off from rioting to actually star in a film.  Those of the older generation, if you ever wondered what happened to Joey from the British Sitcom Bread, then he is in here, displaying the worst Movie fake accent since Dick Van Dyke decided to sing along with Mary Poppins! The gang enter and get locked in, a freaky clown appears on a TV telling them what "Tasks!" they have got to do, the first being that they have to summon the spirit of the dead evil warden (yes its that dumb) and soon he appears in the shape of the infamous actual prisoner Bronson -not the actual one silly, but a lookalike- a warden who executed, raped, tortured, and murdered hundreds of prisoners which means murder and bloodshed ahead for these poor teens. The dumbness continues when the film makers spot the "ghost!" on screen but dismiss it because they think the studio bosses are playing a trick on them (seriously I am not making this up) and the lunacy continues when the makers continue to watch while this unwelcome guest starts going to work believing the logic that the teens themselves are in on all the joke at their expense. Its the stupidity of the script that makes The Task a very hard slog to watch!  Even if the script this bad could have meant the slash element carries the film over the line but it does not even play like a slasher, instead we have the film trying to build tension and suspense but that is a fatal flaw when you do not believe what is going on could actually happen.   What we needed was a bogyman going full mental on his unwelcome guests but The Task is unsure of what its trying to be.  Slasher fans will be annoyed that it does not try hard enough with its inital tease and overall horror fans will find the lack of scares deeply frustrating. But just when you think the film could not get any worse, we then come to the climax which will have your howling with laughter.  The twist is one of the worst I have seen in a very long time and a turning point I should have seen coming because it follows the dumb logic that the film carries through out!  Just when you think you have suffered enough, we then get another twist which finally got my interest but its so rushed and frantic that we are left with nothing but a bitter aftertaste and a feeling of a wasted opportunity. If you want to see a proper Horror Reality Show film then check out My Little Eye because this is worse than the awful Halloween Resurrection and that coming from me tells you all you need to know about The Task!                                                                            1 OUT OF 5

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(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2558
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 17/8/2011 7:15:14 PM   
evil bill


Posts: 6716
Joined: 19/7/2006
From: mordor/ uk
quote:

ORIGINAL: HughesRoss



 
                                                                       3 OUT OF 5

Watch this not long ago,and for some reason enjoyed it more than The Orphanage,now this is because it felt like the classic The Haunting.
quote:




These two i will avoid as your and my taste in horror of all kinds,is very similar,so i know i'll end up using the discs as beer mats.


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"You listen to me now,i will find you and i will kill you!"

(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2559
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 20/8/2011 2:11:12 AM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr



 THE HUGHES VERDICT

To enjoy Quarantine 2 then its best if you ignore REC and REC 2.  In no shape or form does this sequel follow the path of its spanish original part 2 and if that is a good or bad thing is up to you the horror fan to decide.  While the original re-make was a shot by shot replica of REC, the film itself had many fans moaning at this approach by calling it pointless and were asking the question "why are people so lazy when it comes to reading subtitles?".  I enjoyed Quarantine for what it was even though REC was superior, I think my main problem was I could not get past Dexter's Sister Debra playing the lead role, and also having lavished the praise on REC, I did not get too much of a thrill seeing it all over again in a typical glossy American re-make.

Of course REC 2 was not bad either, in fact like I said in my review, I thought at times it bettered the original so when Quarantine 2 was announced and the makers put out a message that unlike before they are ignoring the story path of its Spanish counterpart, there were gasps from fans everywhere.  But not from me!  I actually thought it was a brave move, I mean why try to replicate perfection and besides with REC nailing that side of the story, I was curious and interested to see how what kind of idea the writers had for their version. 

Could it be better or is this the dumbest idea since they decided to re-make Halloween?

Signs are not good though before you even sit down and watch the horror!  Bypassing the cinema and heading for straight to DVD was once a sign of kiss of death with the studios not confident enough to see their baby flop badly on the big screen.  Of course that notion is well gone these days with horror becoming a breeding ground for quality releases on the Monday Morning  shelves with such greats like The Torment and The Objective all being released this way and gaining massive critical acclaim from fans and writers all over the world.  Yes Quarantine 2 may be a case of the studio having little faith in their new franchise, but there are still fans out with huge expectancy towards this film and will look past the low budget and lack of big name stars because simply deep down they want to be scared, they want that suspense and be thrilled, basically they live in hope that Quarantine 2 can be like REC 2, but a whole new board game.

But with this new path of a story comes new direction and gone is the hand held ‘found’ footage. This sequel bears no resemblance to this presentation style of the three films before this, opting for a more traditional horror film camera set up which may bring a welcome relief to those who are getting sick of this camcorder craze!  Also missing is any music, an eerie decision that makes the film stand out differently to what you expect.  Honestly there is just silence through out, a real odd vibe comes from watching a film this way and I have to say it kinda works brilliantly.  The film somehow gets the tension and suspense by doing it this way and its a real high mark off me for whoever decided to go down this route!

The film introduces us to Jenny and Paula two airplane attendants preparing for a routine flight.  The beginning sees the introduction of a new set of characters, all passengers of a plane who are heading off to do their separate business.  In a clever scene, we see one of the passengers watching TV on his laptop and seeing a news report of a building in LA under Quarantine, which gives the viewer the link towards the original.  Everything is fine on board until one of the passengers vomits and starts to act all crazy and its here we realise that the virus from that tower block is now aboard a plane.  After few tussles on board and chaos begins to rage, the plane is forced to land when one of the passengers starts to develop rabies-like symptoms, but when on land the crew and passenger find themselves quarantined inside a terminal and with the infection beginning to spread, murder and bloodshed starts to become a common theme, in other words, its REC all over again, but this time in an airport! 

I am going to be honest and say that it only took one moment for Quarantine 2 to piss me off so much that the film lost me and never got me back.  When I first heard of this plot I thought it was a good one, REC works because we are stuck in one place and that tower block itself becomes like this suffocating blanket where there is no escape.  The idea that this mutant virus is on a plane that is high up in the sky is actually better that the original spanish concept.  Think about it!  How can you run and hide when you stuck up in the sky? and Quarantine 2 had the most perfect location to match the suspense and claustrophobic feel of the original.  Before anyone says "how could they set a film just on a plane?" obviously have not seen the quite wonderful underrated Flight Of The Living Dead which had Zombies run amok on flight and also do not forget the Big Sam film Snakes on a Plane, so there are examples of how this sequel could have approached its concept and when we get the first sign of a customer not feeling too good then things do bode well.

But has soon as the virus starts to have fun the plane lands and we find ourselves in an empty terminal where we get nothing more than a carbon copy of that tower block.  Sorry makers, this is not the film I signed up for and hand on heart, the film never recovered from that for me.  That is not say the rest of your horror fans will get no enjoyment out of this sequel.  It plays out like standard zombie fare, an easy watch for a weekend where fans of this kind of genre will lap up!  The main flaws are way too obvious, first it offers nothing new, just loads of people running around in the dark and secondly and most importantly, its not once scary.  Maybe because this kind of storyline has been told too many times to register in our horror brain, it lacks a certain bite at times and while it never gets tiresome, you do wish for a mid point twist to freshen things up.

Writer/Director John Pogue (Ghost Ship) tries his best with the limited budget and I have to applaud his stance to offer up something new, but you just do not get the feeling of awe that you get with its much bigger brother and sister.  I said at the beginning of this review that its best to ignore REC and REC 2, but its really hard to do and while I really wanted to enjoy this sequel and believe me its not the disaster that you may be expecting, you can not help but get that feeling you had with the original Quarantine which was "this will do but I can not wait for REC 2" which is now replaced with "this will do but I can not wait for REC 3!", which I suppose is the wrong frame of mind to be watching a film that is trying to please you.

Quarantine 2 is ok, the film flies by even though it sells out towards the end by switching the POV to night cam for what is a no doubt cheap ploy to keep in with the tradition of the franchise, and the end itself hints that maybe next summer we be getting a third film which will no doubt be another straight to DVD release which leaves me with thoughts lingering in the air.  Would this film and franchise make the money it does if it was not for the REC link?  If this was called anything else like for example "Mutant Virus On A Plane!" would horror fans be queuing up to see it?

I very much doubt it, so to all those who are quiet happy to keep on watching Quarantine III, IV and no doubt V, if you have never watched a subtitle film before, then check out the real deal, you may never look at this American franchise in the same light again!........

                                                                                           2 OUT OF 5

_____________________________

Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

http://horrorcultfilms.co.uk/2012/01/horrorcultfilms-movie-awards-of-2011-all-the-winners-right-here-of-our-first-ever-hcf-awards/

(in reply to evil bill)
Post #: 2560
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 28/8/2011 10:14:00 AM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr
                                         
                                      FRIGHT NIGHT  When I sat down to watch this Fright Night mark II, like with many re-makes of present there was an air of guilt around my body, a feeling that I have come quite accustomed to over recent years.  Like Halloween, Friday 13th, Freddy and countless others, here I was sitting down to watch a new version of characters who I love, a storyline that I adored and a film which I cherished with all my heart when I was growing up.  Like always I felt like a husband all set to embark on an illicit affair, all set to cheat even though I did not really want too.  So I ask myself the question why?  If I love the original so much then why do I have the need to seek out the new shiny version that has just hit the market?  Why put myself through it considering I been here before especially when its me that always gets hurt?

Having felt a rage that I have never encountered before with Zombie's Halloween and then seeing it repeated for many others, this remake lark is now the norm in the horror genre.   I do not even bother getting excited anymore because with all the ones that have been released over the years there are only one or two that have done the justice service.  Fright Night arrives under the impression that the 1985 film is not in the same bracket of the Freddy and Jason's of the worlds, where the fan base is relatively low to the films of those nature.  While that may be true, the original Fright Night is held in high esteem by the older fans of horror.  People seem to have forgotten that the film was a massive success in 85, winning critical acclaim and loads of horror awards and only a poor executed sequel probably stopped the films from becoming a well branded franchise at the box office. Looking at all the re-makes over recent years I could see that Fright Night was the one that did make sense in doing.  Hardly a known name for the new generation of horror fans, the concept was ripe for a revisit, especially with the similar non-horror Disturbia making so much money at the box office.  I remember sitting in the cinema and watching Disturbia and thinking how much it reminded me of Fright Night and it seems that some bigwig in the studio had the same idea.                                                                   I have to tale my hat off to the makers for also giving the older fan a cast to actually die for.  Anton Yelchin takes over from William Ragsdale in the role of teenager Charley Brewster, the vamp itself Jerry Danridge which was played with relish by Chris Sarandon is now played by Colin Farrell while the role of Peter Vincent which has become iconic thanks to the performance of Roddy McDowall has been given to David Tennant, a role that is supposed to be the breakthrough for the former Doctor Who!  The rest of the sub characters are still an eye opener with Toni Collette playing mum Jane Brewster, Imogen Potts taking over the role of Charley's girlfriend Amy and the other most important role of best friend Ed going to Christopher Mintz-Plasse.  So you can see how intriguing thie whole film is, why I sat down and thought maybe just maybe, this remake will be worth the feeling of deja vue and something I can actually rave about! Sadly though, once again I was badly wrong! Fright Night 2011 differs from the original storyline with alarming consequences even though the thrust of the storyline stays the same.  Charley thinks that his new neighbour is a Vampire and needs help to prove it before he gets either bitten and turned forever or killed.  That is the core central premise but the remake changes the plot from how we get to the final battle between good and evil.  First we start with a rather clever scene that will fool all the old fans.  Its virtually a shot to shot opening minute of the original that turns into something else that was brilliantly done and actually shocked me.  In fact the first twenty minutes serves the film well, we get an opening shock, the introduction of the characters is well done and things really boded well, until of course we get to the first change and one that may well piss off all Fright Night fans. Ed is no longer best friends with Charley!  The reasons being is that Charley is now too cool to seen with his weird and geek old friend, a scene that results in this new version Ed uttering the infamous words "You so Cool Brewster!" which will delight many fans.  The trouble is and the first sign that all is not going to be right with this film is that its Ed himself that tells Charley that his new neighbour Jerry is a vampire.  This rocked me because the fun of the original is seeing Charley running around telling everyone what he thinks and with no one believing him.  With one full swoop we see the "fun" factor swept away from this redo, and it gets worse.  The treatment of the character of Ed is appalling because I am telling you now fans he appears in about three scenes and its so frustrating that an actor like Mintz-Plasse is wasted in the role that had more meat to the bone from what I remember.  Its this moment of the film and its right in the first half hour that you can not help but feel the whole set up is being rushed, there is a stunning pace to the film that may delight the young audience but when you see Ed being chased by the evil Jerry in the first 30 minutes even though its not been established to the viewer that Jerry is in fact a vampire, you will see that the plan here is not for character development or for teasing the viewer, just a simple film, where Charley needs to kill Jerry!                                                           This logic sadly does not work because we get none of the scenes where Charley looks out of the window every night to spy on his new neighbour.  The lack of "Rear Window" style imagery goes totally against what the original was all about and in fact its Jerry who comes looking for Charley.  There is no hiding or denial from this Jerry Danbridge, he is quite happy to go around killing anyone in sight, there is no mystery or suspense with this character and while I can not fault Farrell with the performance, simply because Farrell playing a vamp is a great thing,  the character is now straight and evil which means even when Charley tells his mother and girlfriend that he believes that he is a vampire, there is no build up for the scene where Charley is proved right, because as soon as he tells them, Jerry is trying to kill them all.  Of course its all to do with the pace again and you can not help but realise that making Fright Night 2011 a rollercoaster where chase scene follows chase scene, this logic means the film loses the heart that made the original stand out from the crowd! The interesting aspect of the remake is the character that does not appear until nearly an hour into the film and its all according how you get the ” of the Peter Vincent character.

In the original, Peter Vincent was a fading horror actor famous for vampire slaying in films and now an aging late-night horror host of a cheap weekend horror show called Fright Night that showed all films. He was a dying breed, someone trying hard to grasp onto the last straws of films and he was an homage to the likes of Peter Cushing and Vincent Price, hence the name!  It was a wonderful creation in 80's cinema, simply because he was an hark back  to days of Hammer Horror and McDowall nailed the role so much that its very much loved with all horror fans.  Here we had a character who is infamous for being the best Vampire Slayer, who does not believe in Vampires who then has to live the role in real life to save people he hardly does not know.  It was a brilliant creation and one that I love ever so much, especially when you see a man who sees the very things that he kills in fiction alive and well and how he grows from a nervous wreck into the guy he has played all his life.  Fantastic!                                                                 
                                                                     
Peter Vincent 2011 is played by David Tennant no stranger for playing an iconic role after his stint in the Doctor Who role!  Here the role is changed to a famous illusionist with his own show on the Vegas Strip. He is young and brass, with the F word being used in nearly every sentence, he is very in your face and at once you do not get the feel you had with the McDowall version.  There is nothing wrong with Tennant even though at times he seems to be still playing the Doctor he does a decent job even though like Ed he lacks the depth to make an impact.  Its not the fault of Tennant that his portrayal will be forgotten because its the way the character is written here, but he gets none of the scenes that he probably would have wished for.  There is no "broken mirror" scene, no "Stake in the Wolf" scene, and the infamous "Welcome to Fright Night for Real!" line is lost with no real impact because you do not associate that name as important to the character in this!  Also and be warned readers, because its a remake we also get a terrible back story involving Peter which will make every fan cry long into the night!  Its needless and stupid and one you will want to forget! There are some good moments, there is one surreal scene in which Charley tries to help a girl and is left with a stunning twist that left me in awe Eagle eye viewers will spot the custom remake cameo and this is from Chris Sarandon as a passing motorist. Sarandon of course played the original Jerry Dandridge and its good to see. But that is it really.  Fright Night 2011 tries hard to change the concept but then sells out for the finale by going back into the story line from the original film.  Its like the a muddled affair in which the makers did not have the faith that the original will serve well with the modern audience but also know that by doing too many changes they will alienate the 1985 fan base.  So what we have is a mixed film struggling with its own identity.  Its not great but its not awful, the saving point being Farrell who really is having a ball in the bad guy role.  The awful CGI is one you can not ignore, and the climax offers hardly no thrills or spills and I even had the thought "Is that it!" ringing through my brain. For newcomers, Fright Night 2011 may well serve as a perfect Friday night date flick, its not boring and passes the time away quite nicely, but if you hold the original withn a cherished heart love like many of the old generation do, then be warned because its another re-make that will leave you frustrated and annoyed and there is no way you be chucking away your old copy and putting this in its place because while this redo is all slick and shiny with a stellar cast, it lacks the heart beat of what made the the 1985 version tick, and with no heart you are left with a cold lifeless body, something like a vampire............                                                                                                                                           2 OUT OF 5

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(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2561
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 12/9/2011 1:35:32 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr
                                                                                                                                                 WHAT IS IT ALL ABOUT
 
We meet Lance Preston and his crew of TV rookies who are filming a new ghost-hunting reality show called “Grave Encounters”, a show in the vein of the popular British TV show Most Haunted. We are told that the first five episodes they shot were great TV but when they got to Episode 6 and their destination the abandoned Collingwood Psychiatric Hospital, they were never seen again.  Footage arrived back at the studio and its here we the viewer watch went on in that unaired TV Episode..  Things do not just go bump in the night, but blood, screams and death are heard throughout the vast dark corridors, where terror is all captured on the ever filming camera.  


   THE HUGHES VERDICT!
 
Sometimes I watch an horror and I get so frustrated at what I am seeing that the film just loses me and never gets me back.  Writing reviews is a delicate job because when I criticise a film many may read that and believe that I am suggesting I could do a better job than the director and writer but believe me I am not.  I wish I had the determination to go out there and get the finance, the equipment, the crew and a stellar cast to make a horror film and then show it to the world and I admire all these new kids on the block who are determined to make a name for themselves, so what I hate the most about reviewing films for this website is when I see one that really annoys me because I just can not gel with what is happening.

Grave Encounters is the perfect example of this feeling.  Recently reviewed by Matt Wavish on the Official page who lavished the praise on this new "found-footage" horror, I sat down in hope that what I was about to see was this years new Paranormal Activity, a film that will take me to that dark place again that I love to go being such a horror fanatic.  I mean how could it not?  The premise is fantastic, a quite wonderful set up for this new genre that surely made my blood rise to a high level of anticipation.

We start with a talk from a Producer of a TV Station who fills us in with what we are about to see.   Lance Preston (Sean Rogerson) is the new kid on the block of reality TV shows.  The show "Grave Encounters!" has Lance and his crew visiting all the scary places around the country that is supposed to be haunted and they spend the night where they hope to capture all things that go bump in the night on their camera.  For the British readers this film is more like Most Haunted while the Americans can associate this with the MTV show Fear and for those who really watch everything horror with that quite wonderful episode of Supernatural which had Dean and Sam in this very same position!  What we are told is that everything was going great with the show but when they got to episode six, something really bad happened and what we are about to see is all real even though you may not believe in what you are seeing.

The destination is an old asylum that bares a huge resemblance to that of the building in the much superior Session 9, a place where many people over the years claim is a real hotspot for ghostly figures.  What I loved about the beginning of this film is the set up is wonderful.  The brilliantly named Vicious Brothers really do the business in they debut directed film, because you can not help but get sucked right into what we are seeing.  They also cleverly build on what many sceptics feel we get in the real programmes like Most Haunted in that the crew play to the camera with Lance the chief culprit of this.  We see the lead presenter come a different person when the camera is on, a real cocky over the top personality and when he is not being filmed he just wants to make Grave Encounters the most scariest TV show around even paying the local gardner to invent a story that he has seen a ghost when originally he said he has not seen anything in all the time he worked there.

Again I have to comment on the build up because it creates a tremendous atmosphere especially when we see Matt (Juan Riedinger) setting up the cameras around the place at night.  The camera being switched on to reveal dark empty corridors, spooky rooms with decay all over the walls, this is perfect material for "found-footage" and I was foaming at the mouth to see what delights would bring after the crew are locked in for the night.                                                                     We start off quite well, the first sign is of an abandoned wheelchair (another Session 9 riff) that we see move on its own while one of the members of the crew have their back turned.  We then see doors shut tight and then the best bit in which poor Sasha (Ashleigh Gryzko) has the fright of her life when someone lifts her hair in which the crew scream and run down the corridor, like any other sane person would do.  At this exact time I was really feeling good about this film, the scares were small but set the pace lovely and the atmosphere of dread was pouring out of the TV screen, but just when I thought I was into something really special, the makers make a fundamental mistake in which the concept never recovers from.   Before we know it, Lance is downstairs telling the guys to pack up because the night is finished and it will be daylight soon.  At first I actually thought I heard him wrong, but then I realised that I didn't and soon Grave Encounters started to complicate things badly.   When the Caretaker fails to turn up, the crew decide to smash down the front door of the building and when they do its here the film moves away from the simple pleasures of Blair Witch and Paranormal and into the realms of fantasy.  Not a good move when you need the viewer to believe in what they are seeing is actual footage of a true event.  When they break open the front door they are not greeted with the outside world but another corridor that leads deeper into the Asylum.  Panic engulfs the team and soon they realise that there is no way out, every exit door leads to a new corridor, there is no roof top because the route is blocked with stone walls and soon the spirits are coming more and more and this time they want to do more and play with their hair. Moving the concept from such a simple premise to fantasy is a huge mistake.  All the wonderful tension they managed to create is completely ruined because I no longer believed in what was happening.  The reason why films like Paranormal Activity and Blair Witch is universally loved and will stand the test of time in the found footage genre is because we the viewer believe that what is happening to them could happen to us whether in our bedrooms or on a camping trip!   Grave Encounters becomes too loaded with ideas from what it originally set out to be and it really jumps the shark when we see members of the team disappear in a cloud of smoke (this does actually happen), the crew wake up and see patient tags on their wrists, and also words cut into their skin.  Its just too much for the genre and the film suffers badly. One moment that sums all this up is when one of the members comes across a tongue on the floor.  Now the set up is perfect, the crew member mutters on the camera "what is it?....what is it?...." the camera he holds pans down and we see this human tongue.  Now it would have been better if we saw this and then the film moved on, leaving our imagination to go over drive, but sadly the makers feel the need to add the money shot and it just loses the quality. There will be those who argue that REC 2 went the same way as Grave Encounters but that followed on from a classic original and needed to do something different while keeping what made Rec work.  It does not work with Grave Encounters because they fail to realise that the best horrors are the ones who believe "less is more!".  With everything thrown in, the film just does not become scary and towards the end it trots along the lines of tedious. By not sticking to what they originally promised and that is a Reality TV Crew being stuck over night in an Haunted Asylum the makers shot themselves in the foot by over thinking the scares, so for that maybe we should change the title from Grave Encounters to Grave Mistake!.......... FINAL VERDICT! By trying to overcomplicate things, the movie fails to live up to what the trailer promised.  You can not help but feel a little bit frustrated and a little annoyed because the premise cries out quality!                                                                             2 OUT OF 5

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(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2562
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 25/9/2011 10:59:08 AM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr








                                                                 





Film: Paranormal Activity: Tokyo Night

Starring: Noriko Aoyama, Aoi Nakamura
 
Directed by: Toshikazu Nagae
 
Out To Buy And Rent on Dvd On October 10th 2011
 
The Hughes Verdict!

Ok, before anyone gets confused, this is not Paranormal Activity 3.   This is a direct sequel to the original film but this time set in Tokyo and while it does link the franchise together, if you have seen Paranormal Activity 2 then the link will not really make much sense, unless we are getting the answer to what happens to or Katie, the bad ass girl from the American films.

Now if that sounds confusing then you may be confused even more because you have to take what happens in this with a pinch of salt (clever in-joke there you will get once you have seen this film), because I very much doubt the American franchise will take this movie seriously so I suppose what we are probably getting is the unofficial sequel, a kind of what Never Say Never Again is to the Bond Franchise, so why the effort to do it at all?  Because the concept cries out for a bit of J Horror injection, I mean if they can make Ringu feckin freaky then I suppose they can not do not much wrong with such a simple and wining formula!

Haruka (Noriko Aoyama) has just returned from an holiday in California where a car accident cut her holiday short.  What we are told is that she run over and killed a woman who had just happened to be on the run from the police after just killing her boyfriend (see where this is going) and the impact made Haruka break both her legs.  Confined to a wheelchair and with her brother Koichi (Aoi Nakamura) just happening to be a tech geek who likes to film every second of his life, this hobby comes in handy when Haruka begins to witness strange things in her bedroom.  With her father leaving for a business trip on the day she returned home, her brother takes it upon himself to discover what is going on and starts to to set up cameras around the two bedrooms, but what starts as a small joke becomes deadly serious and for all those who have seen Paranormal Activity 1 and 2 then you know where this is going!

I have to be honest and say that Tokyo Night left me really cold.  Not in a Sixth Sense kind away in which I felt that there were spirits around me but in the fact that the film is not really that good!  You could put that down to the fact that the premise has been told twice to much better effect and this sort of "unofficial" sequel offers nothing new, but that would be unfair on the eagerly awaiting Paranormal Activity 3 which going by the snippets I have seen actually looks rather good.  I can see that the concept is a one trick pony, a film that relies on people believing that this is happening and maybe the reason the American sequel worked so well is because we were already invested into the people involved. 

As soon has the face of Katie appeared in Activity 2 we the horror fans were already sucked into the plot because we already shared the experience of what happened to her and it was interesting to see how she would fit into the new plot.  What carried the sequel was our curiosity of the characters Kate and Micah and its the same trick that will be on display with Activity 3 which is another prequel this time showing Katie and her sister Kristi being haunted when they were kids.  Of course while I am only speculating about this, I would not be too surprised that this time next year we will see Activity 4 which then continues the story into the now and we finally get to see what happens after the original Paranormal Activity.  At the end of the day the studio have got us fans just where they want us and they will milk the franchise for all its worth until there is no direction they can take the plot!

                                                                   

Now Tokyo Night proves that you can not take the formula into another family.  From the off I did not get the connection that is required with this family.  Yes they do try to link this with its American counterpart but I really did not care what was happening simply because what was displaying on the screen was the same old and at times totally daft!

What does help at all is the fact that the film is really boring.  No seriously, I know this franchise loves to set up the scares so we get the final twenty minute horror, but I really could not help but find myself yawing and ready to press the off button on numerous occasions.

Like the original PA we have Koichi in the role of Micah who takes it upon himself to sort this situation out so for numerous times we have him telling his sister what he is about to do.  Now this is a scene that gets repeated over and over while they usually sitting around having food.  This of course comes across as not really thrilling or watchable because all we want is to see the night action.

The film repeats itself constantly with four loops of play that really becomes irritating.  The camera is set........they go to bed.....something spooky happens.......then they watch it back!  I know that many will read this and think "well that is what happened in the original!", but for some strange reason it does not just work here because for the first hour the night scares are really dull.

"Oh look, there is a noise!"....oh look, the bedroom door is opening on its own!......oh look there is a noise.........oh look the bedroom door is opening on its own!......." these are the scenes that are being constantly displayed and after a while you really wish the film would stop with this bullshit and get to the real stuff.  It gets worse before it even marginally gets better especially with the arrival of their best friend who just happens to have psychic abilities (who hasn't got a friend like that), who goes all over in a wobble and foams at the mouth in what is a real laughable scene.

Of course the film picks up a bit of stride when we get to the obligatory wheelchair moving on its own scene arrives  and when the ghost begins to get violent even though the stupidity of the characters and even more laughable scenes brings the standard down.  What I did not get is that even after a bit of hair pulling, the siblings still sleep separate every night and also they do not just pack their bags and move out.  Also I can not wait to hear what people think of the most bonkers scene of the year in which we see the "Ghost" stand!  Now this moment will no doubt bring howls of laughter to your household because its so daft that the film needs to be seen just for that alone.  Its like the walk of a man after a few hours on the booze and its up there for me as 2011's most ridiculous horror scene.

By reading this you can probably guess by now that PA: Tokyo Night did nothing for me, its a criminal waste of a solid premise that never really gets going and ends with a whimper than a bang, and while PA fans will be intrigued to see how this fares, I can only warn you that its nothing like the American counterparts which probably means its the first of its kind!

What do I mean by that?  Well there is every horror fan moaning about the American treatment of their re-makes of J Horror classics like The Eye and Ringu and it seems that it works the other way around because make no mistake, J Horror has made a right hash of such a simple concept like Paranormal Activity! 

                                                                                           1.5 OUT OF 5 

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(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2563
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 26/9/2011 10:55:19 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr




                                                      
                                                                         "Ooh that has got to hurt!"


What's it all about?
 
 
Tucker and Dale are two best friends on vacation at their dilapidated mountain house, who are mistaken for murderous backwoods hillbillies by a group of obnoxious, preppy college kids. When one of the students gets separated from her friends, the boys try to lend a hand, but as the misunderstanding grows, so does the body count.

 
 The Hughes Verdict!
 
WOW!

The quotes that come with this horror states that what we are about to watch is the all new Shaun Of The Dead but they are wrong!  What we have here is the all new Evil Dead II, yes that is a big statement for this horror fan to say but damn, I have just met two characters that I really want to see more of.

Tucker & Dale is one joke concept that works brilliantly, it puts a whole new spin on the slash formula and is one of the most enjoyable horrors I have seen this year.  I can not possibly compare it to the heavyweights of the division like Scre4m and I Spit On Your Grave for the simple reason is that the tone on offer here is different to what we are used to.  Here we have a brief trip into camcorder horror, gore porn, slash, the old trait of the cabin in the woods, yet its all played out to such a slapstick effect that you will be smiling throughout.  This is really good folks and I can not recommend it highly enough!

Alan Tudyk (FIREFLY) and Tyler Labine.(REAPER) play the two hillbillies who run into a bunch of college students on a camping trip.  Having watched such films like Deliverance and numerous other horrors, the kids are afraid of the two and tell them to keep away but from the off the film establishes that despite their appearance (and the film says a lot about stereotyping) these two are nothing more than a friendly duo even though they only share one brain between them.

The students set off and build their camp while Tucker and Dale have got themselves an old abandoned cabin and set up their new home.  Trouble starts when the kids decide to go skinny dipping while the duo are fishing in the same lake.  One of the girls Ally (Katrina 30 Rock's Bowden) slips off a rock and bangs her head and the duo rush to rescue her.  Seeing their friend being taken by these hillbillies is a cue for mayhem because the gang believe that Ally has been abducted and decide to go and rescue her, but what happens, well you be laughing finding out!

 
                                                           
                                                           "The duo have just realised that Uwe Boll wants to do the Sequel"
 
First time writer and director Eli Craig has delivered a cult masterpiece that many will find so much love for!  You could compare the style to the Final Destination franchise because the deaths are not by the hand of a masked fiend but from the cause of accidents which of course all make out to be at the hands of Tucker and Dale.  These two bumbling fools only want to do the right thing but every time they try, someone else ends up dead.

The death scenes are hilarious and full of dark humour.  The two that stand out brilliantly is when Tucker hits a wasp nest and starts running through the woods with a chainsaw in his hands like the figure of a certain Leatherface which results in one of the teens death because he was running while he is not looking and the other is a quite stunning wood chipper scene that recalls the black humour of Fargo. 

But while I totally adored this, the trouble with such a film like Tucker and Dale is even for its short running time, the film falters towards the final quarter only because the plot changes from its initial concept to something else. The last half twist turns the duo into unexpected heroes and the horror loses the quality that it was delivering only because it stopped being funny.  But that is just a minor grumble because make no mistake, after all the gore/torture porn and camcorder horror which is doing a slow death, Tucker and Dale hits the DVD market like a breath of fresh air and for that there will only be a few who will find no enjoyment out of this because make no mistake...

This is a birth of a whole new franchise.....

                                                                                4 OUT OF 5

< Message edited by HughesRoss -- 26/9/2011 10:57:23 PM >


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(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2564
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 28/9/2011 12:08:56 AM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
Just finished Tucker and Dale. Really entertaining. I just wish they'd cast an actor instead of that Corey Feldman looking motherfucker.

(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2565
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 4/10/2011 5:16:27 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr
   
 
 THE HUGHES REVIEW
 
It’s been six years since I last saw Martin Bristol, the poor child who was abducted at a young age and grew up to be the new Michael Myers.  Six long years in which doing that time, Harry Potter has grown from a boy to a man, Superman returned and went again, Myers had the Zombie treatment twice, while Freddy and Jason all were revisited much to the fans dismay.

One of the many things I did not tell director Stevan Mena when I recently talked to him about his movie BeraVement is the fact that I had given up hope of ever seeing this character again.  Most sequels are made on a rush to help jump on bandwagon caused by the success of the original and make no mistake just because MaleVolence was a cheaply made slasher film, its gained a massive reputation of being one of the greatest ever made, especially in a genre where films overcrowded with the same thing over and over.

Due to financial wrangles that caused any further films to be made, I honestly thought I was left with just one film to look back on, a magnificent horror that I would watch and sigh at the waste of such potential from concept to the outstanding talent of the director Mena who I really thought was on his way to being the new Carpenter for a new generation.

Over the years the hope slowly faded to one side, joining the likes of Back To The Future 4 in films that I could only wish for, even up until April this year I thought no more of MaleVolence until one day I decided to track down Mena for an interview I hoped he would give to us at Horror Cult Films.  It was here when I was looking for a contact address I stumbled on a film called BeraVement, and the name Stevan Mena appeared above the title.  Pointing the obvious and showing no sign of Columbo intelligence I mumbled “Must be his new one!" and soon joy filled my horror heart.  "Mena is back!" I thought until I spotted something which made the joy become a rush of excitement that I rarely get in films.  The V in the title stood out from the other letters and it immediately made me think of MaleVolence which had the same design!  "Maybe it was just a Mena thing!" echoed in my brain until I decided to check out the plot details and realised that  in front of me was without question the long awaited sequel to his first film.

Now the feeling I had is hard to put into words but a sheer rush came all over me.  Not only was the evidence there in front of me, but it had already been made and most importantly was due out very soon.   All of a sudden like a flash Scre4m which was my eagerly awaited film of the year had been replaced and BeraVement was in its place, but like MaleVolence I knew I had to wait.  The film was only being released in limited cinema's and not on Region 2 dvd so I knew the only chance I got to watching this film is to wait for the Region 1 release but what was a few months when I waited six long years.

 
                                                                  
                                                             "The birth of Martin Bristol is played right in front of your eyes"

 
FIVE MONTHS LATER:

 
Tonight my dream came true and when I put the copy of BeraVement into my DVD player and pressed play, I must admit I sat back nervous, simply because not only was the wait over, but having talked to Mena, I really wanted him to repeat the history he created with the original for reasons I was a film lover and because he was so damn likeable. I really believe he deserves all the success for the hard work he puts in and also because at heart, he is what we all want to be, a film fan living the dream!

So yes I admit I was a bit scared that BeraVement would flop, I mean how many sequels are just as good?

Originally, MaleVolence the sequel was going to be called MaleVolence Yesterday, and it was going to be nothing but a rehash of the original film.  The original actors would be back but instead we see the same thing all over again but with the POV angle of the killer.  It seems that the courtroom wrangle that caused the delay of the sequel being made was probably a good thing, because that idea sounds nothing more than a gimmick.  Yes it would have pleased the fans, and I probably would have loved it, but now having seen the end result with BeraVement, you can see that there is much more scope to this story.  Mena has not just ripped up the rule book to sequels but rewritten it, this guys is not quite what you expect!

This is not about a man in a mask.  This is not The Continuing saga of Martin Bristol, this my friends is an altogether different vision that was created in MaleVolence and the only reason you realise at the beginning its the sequel is from the music and the credits that cry out "this is a Mena film!”

 
But the opening 5 minutes does dip its toes into what we have seen before and that is the abduction of Martin Bristol, only this time its extended.  For all of you unfamiliar with the story then this is not the review for you, I am simply writing this for everyone who has seen the original and wants to know the direction this goes.  If you have not seen the film MaleVolence, why the heck not? And why are you reading this?  Please do not go any further and seek it out, but in case you are still reading then let me the answer the question that is lingering in your head.  "Yes!" you can watch BeraVement without seeing MaleVolence, they both are created in such a way that they can both exist without each other but watching them both together, then WOW!
 
BereaVement is a prequel to what went on before, the version we heard from the diaries read out by the detectives at the end of the first film.  This shows how a young boy who was taken from a swing in his garden can grow to become the ultimate bogyman.  Yes it’s the back-story to which we all dread as an horror fan but Mena is to clever to just do that.  By watching this and then MaleVolence straight after you realise the power this has, in fact I will give this film the highest compliment and say that this makes the original even stronger because this is just perfect in terms of what it sets out to be.
 
MaleVolence threw you into the deep end; we had a bank robbery and an old fashioned slasher that was loved by Halloween fans because its slash moments were so much like the Carpenter classic.  Now what the follow up does is just adds the build-up to when Martin arrives as the bogyman.  It’s like Carpenter announcing to the world that he is to do a new Halloween film and it’s going to be set on the day October 30th 1963 and we witness why a six year child decided to pick up a kitchen knife and never put it down!. 
 
This is what Mena has given to the world of horror, a story that enhances the original in every single way and for that he must be applauded.  This is the most perfect horror film that shows how a back story should be handled.  Not once does he offer the viewer any sympathy for the plight of Martin who ends up doing some pretty awful stuff in this.  By the time you get to the final scene in which Martin is "born", he becomes the very thing that scared you in MaleVolence and that takes massive creative talent from Mena who once again shows the potential to become a major force in the horror field!
 
                                                  
                             "In Despair and lost of all hope, Allison Miller is played by the wonderful Alexandra Daddario"
 
It is amazing how different the two films are.  BereaVement is an old fashioned slow build up horror that is not concerned in giving away cheap tricks to the audience.  Yes, there will be fans that may put their nose up to the snail pace and there will be slasher fans who may not take kindly to this new approach, but if you stick with it then you realise just what Mena was trying to achieve.
 
While the original was more in tune with the likes of Halloween, the sequel plays more like a Texas Chainsaw Massacre and while torture porn may from the outside play like a pivotal role in this film, Mena shows great restrain and does not go down the usual route to keep the gore hounds happy. 
 
Even the bigger budget and more high profile cast (Michael Bien) does not sway the thinking of  Mena who simply has this attitude that no matter what, this is the story he wants to tell and nothing is going to stop him.  He also plays with fans expectations, especially with a Shining moment that may stun the more casual horror fan.
 
By the time you get to the end you be glued to the chair and you really are witnessing a new icon of the slash genre with the final twenty minutes showing the birth of a mad man that will not only wet your appetite for either watching MaleVolence again or better still have you excited for the already in pre-production MaleVolence III.
 
This is why BereaVement works on so many levels, in that it gets you excited again of a film that many thought was long gone in the vaults of cinema.  You could argue that because I have interviewed this man then I may be swayed in given a false account of BereaVement but having not read one review of the film to avoid spoilers, I was stunned to find many high profile horror websites praising this very film and they should….
 
BereaVement shows that no matter how many times you write off  the horror genre there is always someone who comes along and shows it’s not dead yet.  Unlike the two films which are bleak and dark, Mena is a shining light in the genre that must be destined for great things and whoever has the rights for Halloween III they should look no further in his direction.  Even thinking what he could have done with the re-make makes me weep at the wasted opportunity.
 
But then maybe I am missing the point.  Why waste his talent on a now used up icon of horror when right in front of him is the name Martin Bristol, a guy who is the new kid on the block, a “shape” that has arrived with two outstanding films, one that introduced him and the other a back story full of dread and despair.
 
It only leaves the final and third film to see it all kick off because if the rumours are true then Martin is on his way home and its going to be some homecoming……..
 
                                                                                        4 OUT OF 5
 
To read my quick chat with director Stevan Mena, click the sig below

_____________________________

Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

http://horrorcultfilms.co.uk/2012/01/horrorcultfilms-movie-awards-of-2011-all-the-winners-right-here-of-our-first-ever-hcf-awards/

(in reply to rawlinson)
Post #: 2566
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 10/10/2011 9:40:55 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr


What is it all about?
A woman suffering from a degenerative sight disease who finds her blind sister Sara hung in her basement. Despite all signs pointing to suicide, Julia decides to investigate what she intuitively feels is a murder case. As her sight gradually deteriorates she uncovers the terrifying truth about Sara's death, and an invisible man with a mysterious link to Sarah begins to stalk her and leave a series of unexplained deaths in his trail.     The Hughes Verdict 
 Julia's eyes is like a bad sexual encounter. For the first forty minutes of this horror/thriller you be having thoughts that what you are having is that this is the best foreplay  you could have ever wished for.  It touches you where no film has gone before, offering you a taste of things to come.  You excited like never before, you can feel the vibes running through your body, its like "oh yes baby I want more!" and  they do, each touch is sublime, you have never had it so good, you sigh at the pleasure, this is it now, its coming and you are ready for the final run in, all you need is the big finish but then it goes all wrong, badly wrong in fact you feel a sudden jolt of emptiness, its like you have been teased to the brink of an orgasm but then they pull away, you feel annoyed and frustrated and then comes the anger, "Is that is?" you think!, and then they leave and what was becoming the best night of your life ends up the most disappointing and instead of a taste of love and affection, all you are left with is a bitter frown that you will never forget! Julia's Eyes will leave you breathless for the first forty minutes of its running time.   Believe me, you'll be scratching your head at the twists and compelling surreal plot and no doubt be trying to work out just what the heck is going on.  I mean how can a serial killer be invisible is one that will have you stumped, because to put simply this film offers brilliant story telling, a fine crafted puzzle that will have you glued to your very seat.  Julia (Belén Rueda) suffers from a rare degenerative sight disease who is distraught when she discovers her twin sister already blind from the disease is found hanged in her basement.  She suspects that its not an open and shut case, something we know is not thanks to a very effective opening scene where we first see the "glimpse" of this serial killer!  For the first half we see Julia trying to to work out what happened but each turn becomes a surreal strange case. One of the best scenes of the year is when Julia wanders into a shower room where a bunch of blind women are talking about her dead sister.  Now I do not mean to show any disrespect to anyone who is blind but this scene and the imagery is startling, the women and their eyes are frightening and when one of the girls senses that there is someone in the room apart from themselves, the way she stands and walks towards the silent Julia is fantastic.  The dialogue afterwards also sparkles with Hitchcock vibe and I it was here at this point I was sold and beginning to fall in love with this film. To compare Julia's Eyes with any other film then Hitchcock does spring to mind but you also see some dark elements of a certain Argento, I can not stress how glorious this film is for a while, we have a simple puzzler of a sister who was on a date with a man yet no one remembers what he looks like.  A serial killer who can just walk away from a murder scene without anyone noticing, who also seems to move the faster than the speed of light and most of all, loves to take pictures from their camera. All this is happening when Julia is losing her sight.  We get scenes of Julia either running for her life or running after this mystery man and then her sight starts to go, the screen itself closes in and goes dark and this brings a wonderful claustrophobic feel which will have you fighting for air. Of course I started this review by stating that this film was like bad sex so I guess you are waiting for a huge "but!" to come along. Without spoiling the film for anyone, the film comes up with a resolution half way in which the police explain to Julia what they think "happened" to her sister!  Now no matter what happened to her before hand, we the viewer are expected to believe that she will takes this and moves on with her life.  This sudden plot change is bonkers and ruins all the good work and instead of the film being a murder mystery it turns into a standard psycho killer genre that died way back when it run to ground in the late 90's. I could not believe what I was seeing because the final hour stinks beyond belief.  We have the "unmasking!" which is so bleeding obvious that the killer walks around with "its me!" on their head and all the suspense which was so craftily built up is ruined. What you can not forgive and I suppose many won't is the way the writers just ignore all the mysteries that it built up.  Its like the writers just thought "fxxk the viewer!, why bother!" which is a disgrace because it shows a total lack of respect. How could this killer walk around unnoticed?  How could they have grabbed that laptop with a blink of an eye?  "Who cares, we don't have to explain everything?" but yes you do, especially as you have created a mystery rich full of ambition.  The film itself is half hour too long and we are left with more muddled plot holes like why does Julia stay in the house where her sister and someone she was close to was killed but above all why would she choose to stay there after she was attacked herself. From being a promising one night stand it ends up being a disappointing climax and when the credits roll for the final time you left feeling maybe you should have taken home something else, because Julia is one tease that you will need persuading to see again!                                                                                                 3 OUT OF 5

_____________________________

Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

http://horrorcultfilms.co.uk/2012/01/horrorcultfilms-movie-awards-of-2011-all-the-winners-right-here-of-our-first-ever-hcf-awards/

(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2567
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 10/10/2011 11:13:51 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr


 
What is it all about?
 
When Sally (Bailee Madison) goes to live with her father (Guy Pearce) and his girlfriend (Katie Holmes) she feels lonely, lonely enough to open up a fireplace where she can hear voices promising to be her friend if she lets them out. Little does she know she is about to unleash demons into the house, demons who will carry out evil deeds.
 
 
   The Hughes Verdict 
 

So you have this handyman who works around the house.  One day he appears from the cellar full of blood and screaming for help.  It looks like someone has tried to kill him so do you, A: Demand to know what happened, want the answers from everyone in case the supposed killer returns? or B: Just pretend that nothing happened, do not mention the handyman again and just make sure that life goes on because you do not really care about your little girls safety!... Now if its B then well done, you will love everything about this horror re-make of the 1973 cult classic, but if you like the majority who just want to watch a horror that does not insult your intelligence in every single turn, then maybe you should watch something else, because make no mistake Don't Be Afraid Of The Dark at times is a right royal mess. Before I go into a slight little rant I have to put my hands up and say there are many good things to like about Don't Be Afraid Of The Dark.  First its a hark back to the golden days when such films like The Gate was winning fans of the horror genre, also I loved the grand design of the entire picture, from the booming music score to the old fashioned setting where the old huge mansion sparks memories of good old Hammer Horror.  The film to my surprise also brings out a real good performance by Katie Holmes whose character Kim and her relationship with the young girl Sally is one of the most stronger aspects of the storyline.  Her battle to be accepted into this miserable young girl's life is the films heartbeat and I also found sympathy for Sally whose performance by the young Madison more or less saves the film from an all together utter disaster, it was her alone that made the last hour more of an easier watch than it should have been. Do not get me wrong, this film is not awful, I mean I have seen some shit this year and this does not actually scrape the barrel, but when you have a likeable cast, a good setting and also an old fashioned story, then you do not expect it to go horribly wrong.   Firstly, I loved the setting, the huge mansion with its huge library looks like it has jumped out of the Disney film Beauty and The Beast and I loved the feel of the film.  I have said many times that its  time for horror to go back to proper scares than selling out to cheap gore porn and I could appreciate the effort gone into making this film be like those of old.  The grand rich music score booms from the surround sound  and with the touch of Guillermo del Toro serving in the background of this film, you see shades of Pan Labyrinth which of course can only be a good thing! So what is the problem? Well its the story and basically lack of one that brings the whole show crashing down.  Its a concept that many have seen too many times before and the lack of surprises and most importantly scares is the fundamental problem that makes this supposed horror come across so lame. Every single cliche box is ticked in front of our very eyes and even then they do it wrong.  Take the handyman scene.  Well here we see the poor bastard being attacked and left for dead by these little critters and we have to accept that nothing gets done about it.  I mean where is the police investigation?, why are the parents not asking the right questions especially when its plain obvious that he suffered no accident.  Now I am no storyteller but even I knew what the film should have done! Already they had established that poor Sally was a mixed up girl who already had been blamed for cutting up her new Stepmom's clothes, now won't it had been better for the film and for a certain thing called tension if the parents suspected  that their young girl may have caused those injuries.  I mean his cuts were so low the first thing the police would have thought that it must have been someone small, and considering there is only one human in the house that size then it would have been a case of just putting 2 and 2 together. It would have added more weight to the plot, a confused young girl may be a murderer whose dad refuses to believe and which the new Stepmom suspects. But noooooooooooooooooooo! That would have been too hard to write and complicate things so instead they went for the easy solution and just ignore the situation and carry on living there.  Of course the little critters who live in the fireplace in the cellar are nothing but a bunch of useless twits who look like an offspring from the sexual encounter between Golem and The Hunchback of Notre Dame.  I mean these little killers are hopeless.  Seriously, I mean they have plenty of time to grab this little girl and drag her into their lair but do feck all about it!  What are they waiting?  Oh yes!  For the last twenty minutes to arrive because before then its all about the tease and also it needs like 2000 of them to take down one person. Also they must have taken lessons from Gizmo because they are scared of bright light which if you think of it, makes the title of the film make no sense whatsoever.  Don't Be afraid of the dark? but you have to be if your torchlight stops working which believe me happens a few times, so should the film have been called "Do Be Afraid Of The Dark"... Of course by the time everyone believes the poor little girl then chaos looms but that is before everyone does stupid things to make sure they are in the position that endangers them and I am sorry but maybe I was tired or just had given up the will to concentrate with the madness but I just did not get the end one bit.  I mean what was all that about?, please tell me because it went straight over my head. Overall, this new imagination of the 73 cult is not so imaginative, its lack of real good ideas and scares makes it some kind of redundant to the more experienced horror fan and apart from a good bathroom scene and the moment under the bed sheet, when this finally finished and I sat back, my first thought was that I had just watched a kids horror, because that is how lame the whole experience is. Frightening?  Yes, but only if you are under 11.....                                                                                2 OUT OF 5


_____________________________

Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

http://horrorcultfilms.co.uk/2012/01/horrorcultfilms-movie-awards-of-2011-all-the-winners-right-here-of-our-first-ever-hcf-awards/

(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2568
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 18/10/2011 12:50:14 AM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr

 
What is it all about?

When lawyer and proud family man Chris Cleek stumbles across a wild, feral woman bathing in a woodland stream near his isolated country home, he makes a decision that will dramatically change both their lives.

Capturing her, Chris chains The Woman up in the fruit cellar below his house, intending to tame and civilize her. But when the task at hand proves to be more difficult than first imagined, he sets in motion a collision course for a brutal showdown between his family and the wild female force of nature...


The Verdict!


Before I start, I did not realise that The Woman was a sequel to the 2009 unknown cult hit Offspring! 
 
Somehow this little detail was not mentioned to me even though I am one of the last of the HCF critics to set my horror eyes on this new horror that has caused waves of excitement and controversy at many horror festivals during this year.  It was a good twenty minutes when I realised that I had been here before, way back in 2009 in fact when I was first introduced to this character of The Woman.  As soon as my eyes clapped on the figure of Pollyanna McIntosh (who reprises the role), I realised to my shock that this was the same character that appeared in Andrew van den Houten's Offspring, a straight to DVD horror that has gained many fans.  How I missed this information is a shocker for someone who prides themselves on gathering as much info on new horror films, so you can imagine my surprise and even more new found added excitement towards a movie that I was already looking forward too!

The cause of my excitement was two things:
 
Reason number 1 was a man who helped generate all the publicity this film needed to succeed.  His stand up routine during the Sundance Film Festival, in which he started screaming when the film was being played, in which he aired his disgust at what he claimed was a terrible portrayal at women.  His words that the film should be "burned" had the film makers laughing all the way to the path of success because like The Human Centipede 2 has proved, bad press is good press if you are a horror film.

Reason number 2 was the man behind the camera, a certain Lucky McKee who fans will know directed the underrated 2002 horror masterpiece MAY and while he has never really followed upon that promise he showed, the fact he was back in the genre that served him well and reunited with MAY star Angela Bettis, (even though she has appeared in all his films since) made The Woman an attractive figure to look at.....so was the wait worth it?

My main surprise was that the film is not the original plot experience I was expecting!  Memories of the equally good Dead Girl lingers long into the air with both films sharing a common theme, the imprisonment of "a woman" but instead of a zombie, this time we have a cannibalistic she-bitch who was last seen in Offspring fighting for her life after some humans fought back.  Now with her clan dead and all alone, she lives in a cave where see her with a new baby, which if my memory serves me right, is some kind of cult tradition explained in the previous film.  Her life is interrupted when she is spotted by the bastard Chris (Sean Bridgers), who captures her,chains her up and then subjects her to abuse while his family watch on!

Now I call him a bastard because he is!  A horrible and I mean horrible creation who rules the family with an air of violence.  His kids are scared of him, his wife tip toes around him and its his word or nothing.  He really is in the mould of Stepfather Jerry Blake, a hideous man who in fact is the monster of this film and not The Woman who he keeps in the cellar!  To be honest the biggest surprise of the film is the fact that the title character is a backdrop to the plot. The evil is all centred around Chris and there are strong currents of plot threads that surface now and again that even suggests that the father is in fact raping his own daughter Peg (Lauren Ashley Carter).

With a son who seems to be following in the path of his father, the film is heavy on the family theme and this plays more like a sick drama than a downright horror. The scary uncomfortable scenes is when Chris uses his fists on his family,everything else is just normal horror trait and I found it strange why a film would cause such fuss for a member of the audience.  The constant rape scenes in the Dead Girl should have caused more ripples but then maybe the impact here is more stronger because the acting is fantastic and the direction by McKee is exquisite, it is without question his finest film since May and I really hope this kicks him in the right direction because I really do not want to wait another nine years for his next one!



The Woman is a fine watch that shows you can still make a challenging horror film!  There is a great shock or better words "twist" at the climax which I never saw coming, and while it loses a few marks for the predicatable outcome, at its core this is a strong family horror with two of the best performances of the horror year in Bridgers and McIntosh who her in particular excells once more as the mute killer.  They are both are so good that you be asking the question......which one is the real monster!
 
The Woman is the third chapter in a series of books by Jack Ketchum which just leaves the adaption of Off Season to be made.......This horror fan is waiting for that day to come!

                                                                                     4 Out of 5
 
THIS IS WHERE IT ALL BEGAN!
 

                                                    
There is something quite alright about this horror that many will call just another The Hills Have Eyes rip off!

What I liked about this horror and also what is the strongest aspect of the entire film, is that there are moments when the word unexpected will soak into your brain.  What is the normal trait of all horrors are totally ignored, one point that emphasis this is that at the beginning we spend an enormous amount of time with one character who we all think must be the hero of the piece.  The build up is quite nice, and just when you think that this one human will fight back, we are stunned by the fact that they die so brutally and harshly.  It was that on that moment when this horror put me on a path of uncertainly and the unknown, and for that, I can only admire it.

For such uncertainly we do start with certainly, in a title sequence that is becoming a norm for horrors these days.  Newspaper cut outs in which you probably have to read, tell the story of a lighthouse family who went missing over 100 years ago in a storm.  Never to be found, over the years people, especially children have gone missing never to be seen again, and the myth is that the missing family survived the storm that engulfed the area and lived in the dense forest.  Over the years and a lot of inbreeding, they now live us cannibals, and their need for human flesh, results in many innocent people being killed and eaten.  They also have a bizarre upbringing rule of stealing children to either have as their own or to kill, for the latter reason the film never quite explains.  It is this rule that brings them to the family of the Halbards, who have friends over and a newborn baby.

   
How it all began for The Woman
 
After a prolonged start in which the film does not quite build the impending doom, maybe to do with the sub acting that at times gets on your nerves, the film kicks off when we visit the cave in which the humans animals live.  We witness a sex scene in which one of these very young looking things gets on one of their relatives who is chained up and called a cow by their language of grunts which thanks to the aid of subtitles we get what they are saying.  While she is jumping up and down in what is an uncomfortable scene due to the fact that there are very young children creatures watching the whole show, the leader of this clan is making plans to go the house and do what they do best.

Please forgive me as well, I usually manage to put all the name of the characters in my reviews but its very hard here.   With names of Rabbit, First Stolen and Eartheater, it was quite impossible to know who was playing who, the only person I pinpointed was the character of Steven played by Eriick Kastel but I get to the reason for that in a bit!

When the attack happens, its here that the film mightily kicks off.   The normal family is having a night in, there is a knock on the door and all of a sudden blood, death, rape, it all happens in what is a relentless horror assault and despite its quite low budget status, it really is a very strong horror set piece, that will delight all gore hounds.

The film does not stop there, those who die are left there and the unlucky ones get dragged back to the cave, and again this where the strong aspect of the film, the unexpectedly again kicks in.  Having been stunned at who dies, we then see kids die.  Ok not everyone's cup of tea but there is a reason here, its not added on for shock value like some films do.  When you fighting off survival and have these kids dressed in primitive clothes coming to attack you, what would you do, especially when they are holding knives and hatchets.  You do anything to survive in those circumstances even though if it means killing young children.  Its not done in a gruesome way as well, its what would happen if normal people are confronted with blood thirsty children.

So lets get to Steve.  Now this is the clever part of the film.  An ex husband of one of the family who get attacked and who is on his way to the house to cause trouble, he really is a disgusting excuse of a human being.  When we first meet him, he picks up a female hitchhiker and then sexually assaults her.  By the time he gets sucked into all the terror, the film makes you think who is the most brutal human being.  These things that only know one way of living and at no fault of their own, or this man, that does things in here that you can can not help but shake your head in disbelief.  When the two attitudes clash, it brings a scene of shockness to the lengths at which Steve goes to and its this theme that harks back to the 70's when this social debate was a strong fore in horror films.
And that is where Offspring belongs, its heart is firmly in the exportation era.  Its not shocking has those films, in fact its quite tame, and the movie may struggle to find much of an audience.  What I mean by that is the low budget and dubious acting will put many off, and those who are a fans of the modern Wrong Turn may laugh at what is on offer, but there are a few who remember when these kind of films were the rage, will get a lot of kicks from watching and like I said before, the lack of any hero and character base means you will never know who will survive and for that, the unexpected edge is a huge bonus for a film that does what many has done before, and it needs to be watched just to be introduced to the character of  The Woman which the role is played brilliantly in both films by Pollyanna McIntosh, and for that both films need to be watched!

OVERALL: 70's horror revisited, this may be a clone to many superior films of this nature, but it delivers when required, and not many horror films make you root for characters who kill little kids..........
 
                                                                3 out of 5

_____________________________

Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

http://horrorcultfilms.co.uk/2012/01/horrorcultfilms-movie-awards-of-2011-all-the-winners-right-here-of-our-first-ever-hcf-awards/

(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2569
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 22/10/2011 9:46:09 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr





What is it all about?
 
Kate and Martin escape from personal tragedy to an Island Retreat. Cut off from the outside world, their attempts to recover are shattered when a Man is washed ashore, with news of airborne killer disease that is sweeping through Europe.


 THE HUGHES VERDICT



The question when I am writing this review is how to end it?

You see the whole concept of this neat British horror is the build up of the concept in which we the viewer have to guess if Jack (Jamie Bell),  is a demented psycho or in fact he is the only sane person in the film.  Now if I say ay the end of this review that "the twist will blow you away!", the more sensible reader will guess that he is actually saying the truth and well, I have spoiled the film.  But if I finish by saying the film ends in a kind of 90's Unlawful Entry thriller then you will take that as he is nothing but a lying bastard who probably ends up the same way as Jerry Blake and the crazy bitch Alex whose Fatal Attraction started this horror trend.   So Its best if I avoid the climax and just tell you the build up, but please if anyone has seen this film and are all set to tell you what happens....then just yell No!.  Retreat is more fun not knowing because if you do go in with the knowledge first hand, then you can probably knock a star off the rating below.

Watching the first half hour of this film is uncomfortable.  Not because its disturbing or in fact its full of gore porn but the fact you swear you are watching the Straw Dog remake.  After twenty minutes I had to check that I was in fact not given the wrong film because the set up is so much like the old Sam Peckinpah classic that I half expected Kate (Thandie Newton) to be raped on the sofa while her hubby  Martin (Cillian Murphy) goes around pissing off all the local men.

Here we see a husband and wife go on holiday in what means a last attempt to get some juice back into their faltering relationship, and they pick an old fashioned house in the middle of nowhere which just cries out for trouble.  With the electricity failing at every single opportunity and with only a radio transmitter on hand to get in contact with the mainland, you can see why watching you are just waiting for the "evil!" to come around the corner and it does in the shape of Billy Elliot, sorry Jamie Bell, a solider found washed up on shore with a loaded gun in his pocket and a bloodied head. 

When he finally comes around on the sofa and with the married couple looking down on him, instead of getting a "thank you!" for taking him in, what they get instead is a nightmare story that they just can not believe.  While Martin and Kate have been on their holiday to recover from the traumatic loss of a baby, the world has been gripped in a pandemic that has been wiping out humanity. In order to survive this serious threat to mankind,  Jack insists  the three of them must board up the cottage like its a Zombie invasion, kill anyone who comes near the place and live in hope that they can survive doomsday!

Is he lying?  Is he saying the truth?.  You can see what I mean by making sure you avoid any spoilers so while I quickly move away from this topic in case I slip up lets talk about the film before we arrive at the last twenty minute mark, when everything is revealed!

                               
                    

To enjoy Retreat in which i did, the more sensible viewer may need to switch off a few brain cells to enjoy the full experience.  I mean at times I just screamed at the TV because of the stupid actions you witness before your eyes.  For a start, no Mobile phones?  No TV? No laptop?, I know they were in a place where "signal!" may be hard to find, but this is 2011 and I found it very hard to believe that a couple would go away and completely cut themselves off to any human contact.  Also it got frustrating because the tension of the film is built up on the stupidity of the married couple!  There is two scenes that simply serve up what I am trying to say. 

On one occasion we get Martin and Kate cranking up the atmosphere while trying to take the gun from the pocket of Jack before he wakes up.  All very good and on the money, but then a little while later, Martin just hands him back the gun for no apparent reason which really annoyed me.

I could go on but I really do not want to make you feel as if the film is not worth watching!  Retreat is enjoyable from beginning to end, the core of "is it a lie or not?" will keep you guessing and the film works in a way because of the trio in the cast who all give great performances, especially Bell who excels in the role of the Solider with a story to tell. 

Yes the plot only moves forward because of illogical actions but it is a perfect Saturday film that will delight newcomers to this kind of genre, but those who have lived through the likes of Dead Calm may well second guess each move, and even if you do guess if the story is real or not, there is a very nasty jolt at the end that even made my black horror heart melt with appreciation!

                                                                            3 OUT OF 5

_____________________________

Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

http://horrorcultfilms.co.uk/2012/01/horrorcultfilms-movie-awards-of-2011-all-the-winners-right-here-of-our-first-ever-hcf-awards/

(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2570
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 28/10/2011 8:11:37 AM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
Hughes, your inbox is full mate.

(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2571
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 28/10/2011 2:49:58 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr
Bollocks...just deleted...I was wondering where your list was....Sorry wikiman

< Message edited by HughesRoss -- 28/10/2011 2:50:29 PM >


_____________________________

Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

http://horrorcultfilms.co.uk/2012/01/horrorcultfilms-movie-awards-of-2011-all-the-winners-right-here-of-our-first-ever-hcf-awards/

(in reply to rawlinson)
Post #: 2572
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 28/10/2011 3:01:34 PM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
Ok, you should have two pms, mate.

(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2573
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 31/10/2011 10:34:39 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr


FILM
The Human Centipede Part 2: Full Sequence

STARRING
Laurence R. Harvey
Ashlynne Yennie

WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY:
Tom Six

RATING
18
 
RUNNING TIME
88 Minutes




                                                      


The Hughes Verdict on the most talked about horror of 2011

"The Human Centipede is only a fucking film!".......is a sentence that has been uttered by many horror fans this year, especially those like me who were mighty pissed off at the decision to ban
the sequel from the British public.  Speculation of the explicit content has spread like wildfire over the internet and I have seen and read arguments aplenty from fans with some believing that people are sick to want to watch this kind of shock "gore-porn" and then from others who believe its their right to watch what they want and they should be treated like adults and not children.  Anyway like I have said countless times, the ban means nothing in the year 2011 especially with the aid of illegal download and for a while it seemed like The Human Centipede 2: Full sequence was heading for the title of most pirated film, but the BBFC relented and after being shown a version with a few cuts, the most talked about horror of the year is finally released this week to the British public, but was the hype and wait worth it all!........

"The Human Centipede is only a fucking film!".......is also a line that is uttered in this very film.  When its said you get a feeling that it was an added line by director Tom Six, a kind of sticking his two fingers up to the industry that has caused him so much hassle over the last six months.  Its also one of the strongest piece of dialogue this sequel offers simply because its telling you that The Human Centipede 2 is not a sequel, its not even a re-make, this folks is a whole new franchise and it took me by surprise because I am probably the most perfect guy to review this film.

"Why?"

Well despite everything, I was not a huge fan of the original.  I thought the hype was much bigger than the actual film I got to watch.  I remember reading one review which stated that "it was the sickest horror film ever made" which after the watch made me believe that whoever that critic was, surely has not watched many horrors.  The original for me was a dark comedy that simply was not "sick" enough.  Before those reading this believe I  am not right in the head for wanting to see such shit, I am I believe a sane person but when you promise "ass to mouth" then I expect to see "arse to mouth", and the fact The Human Centipede offered nothing just the thought ringing through your head, then of course I was disappointed.  Again those who think the film was sick then answer me this, how can a film be that bad when its shown on the ScyFy channel most nights at 9pm?

Having watched the sequel or whatever you want to call this second film then I believe Tom Six heard the despair from hardcore horror fans and thought "if you want to be shocked and see arse to mouth then this time I am going all the way" , and I am telling you now, The Human Centipede 2 is everything the original was not.  This is a proper horror film, lacking any sense of humour and is ugly from beginning to the very end.  In fact I go as far and say this is the most ugliest horror film I have ever seen, from the lack of humanity from the characters, to the lack of imagination in the horror scenes that seem to on and on.  After the credits rolled I can not imagine anyone liking this film.  Yes they may watch it and like me think "why the fuss?", but the unpleasant taste you get in your mouth is nothing but bitter!

The film starts like Blair Witch 2.  Seriously!  We see the end of the first film (not Blair Witch smart arse)  and reminded in what happened to the original Human centipede.  The camera pans out from the screen and we see the main character Martin watching the film on his laptop!  Yes like the Book Of Shadows we are immediately told that the events of the first was in fact all a film and that this guy is obsessed by watching it!  How obsessed?  Well he just loves wrapping sandpaper around his penis and masturbate while watching the film on a loop!  The fact we actually see him doing this must wank...sorry...rank as one of the most tasteless scenes of the horror year but can I say that the image we see is nothing compared to what follows.

Martin who is played wonderfully by new face Laurence Harvey who will no doubt become a pivotal face in straight to DVD horror for many years.  Its plain obvious that something is not right with Martin a man living with his bullying mum who is still traumatised by suffering sexual abuse when he was a kid from his father.  We get to know this story from the fact that his mother blames him for the absence of his father and her husband,  and from an equally weird psychiatrist who tries to help this man to no avail!.  Martin’s only joy in life is his pet centipede, and of course a certain film which I assume you know.

Its here that the film does a good job in actually showing you how a sick film can actually disturb an already fragile mind.  I find it quite ironic and funny that one of the reasons the film was originally banned is because of a similar reason.  One of the lines I have picked up from the statement the BBFC released is that it would "would involve risk of harm within the terms of the VRA" and yet the Human Centipede 2 does explore this issue.  Here we see a mentally wrong man getting obsessed by a sick film and the film goes and shows how such imagery can affect such a person.  Now I am not saying Tom Six is a genius but even those who complain about this film must sense the irony!

Martin works as a security guard where he just sits there planning his work of art.  With no dialogue coming from his mouth, the mute Martin goes about his job by attacking anyone who walks into the late night parking area.  His plan is to outdo Dr. Heiter and create a human centipede of 12 people and for the first 55 minutes we see him attacking innocent people by bashing them on their head and taking them back to his abandon warehouse.  He even manages to convince a star from the Human Centipede film,  actress Ashlynne Yennie to the warehouse where she too gets back into the groove of her worst nightmare.

Hand on heart and I will say that the first hour is tame to what I expected.  There are basic killings and of course a bit of sandpaper on penis, but there is not much to write home about.  Its when the film hits the hour mark of a 90 minute film you finally get to see what all the fuss is about and its here that you can see where some will shake their heads at what they are seeing.  You see Dr. Heiter was a German scientist/surgeon who knew what he was doing, Martin doesn't and with his rusty box of tools this madcap human goes to work and tries to create the vision set out in the first film.

A staggering tooth scene will leave you breathless and weep for the joys of Marathon Man and horror fans who love the the sick stuff will be in their element at what is on offer, but for me well the last twenty eight minutes left me rather cold.  I know this was supposed to be disturbing but apart from the tooth smashing everything else was just OTT.  I mean how can any genuine fan be disturbed with this.  I really believe that despite all the press and his vented fury, Tom Six was rubbing his hands with delight at the negative press.  I swear I could hear him laughing from behind the camera because its plain obvious he set out to shock and he achieved more than that.

But the question again I have to ask is was the hype worth it?  Again I have to say no!  Yes we do actually get to see the ass to mouth this time and of course when the shit hits the fan we get to see it, but those who gathered round to see the infamous Two girls and a cup!  viral clip will just watch on without a feeling of disgust.  Also the repetitive tone of the last half is one that many will find more of a turn off, I mean once he creates his masterpiece, where does the film go from there?  Oh look!, even more ideas of an attempt to shock.  I was not once taken aback by what I was seeing.  It was too daft and unbelievable to taKe hold of me, I mean you simply can not compare the disturbing image of say the rape scene in Irreversible which I had to glance away and not look.  Why?  Because that felt real, here its just cartoon horror and I think even those who called this "sick" without seeing a frame will be stunned at how not disturbing this is!

The weird thing about it all is that the best scene of the entire film is one of simple horror that frightened me more.  Again I have to point out that Martin is not a surgeon so his way of knocking his "patients" out is a brilliant set-piece that feels out of place and hints that if Tom Six really wanted to, he could make a good horror.

Once again though even after a hour since the credits roll I am left with a feeling of waste!  While the first one was too much full of dark humour, the second one is too much of the dark stuff and what we need is a film that strikes the balance between the two, something maybe the already planned third film will offer even though I very much doubt it!

The biggest shame is that The Human Centipede 2 is not at all frightening or too gruesome to offend.  Its not a patch on A Serbian Film which hits its own headlines last year and both films have a "new born baby" scene but in this film you will be to busy laughing at the outcome and its that scene alone which sums up everything Six was trying to achieve here.  Outrageous over the top horror that will generate massive headlines and if watching a woman getting raped while being the tail-end of a twelve-person Centipede while the rapist has barbed wire wrapped around his penis is your cup of tea then jump on board.

As for me, well this week I sat down and watched the most disturbing film I have ever seen and it was called Fred The Movie, a film, my children told me was funny and I had to see it.  If the BBFC need advice in banning a film then please turn their attention to that piece of crap becaue they have wasted to much attention on a film which is not worth it, a film that if someone asked me was it shocking? I simply would reply "not really, it was rather boring!"..................

                                                                                             1.5 OUT OF 5
 

_____________________________

Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

http://horrorcultfilms.co.uk/2012/01/horrorcultfilms-movie-awards-of-2011-all-the-winners-right-here-of-our-first-ever-hcf-awards/

(in reply to rawlinson)
Post #: 2574
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 7/11/2011 7:46:09 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr
 PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 3  THE HUGHES VERDICT!  Its amazing really, just when the studio's were worried that the had milked every last drop out of their guaranteed Halloween box office gold SAW franchise then along comes another title to take over the mantle.  At the moment everything Paranormal Activity is gold for the horror genre.  The second sequel has broken its own takings and the critical acclaim it has received has only gained more positivity to the franchise, already they are plans for a 4th film to be released-yes you guessed it-next Halloween and for me who was seduced by the beauty of the original only a mere three years ago, I was excited to sit down to watch the new film even though I am one of the last HCF critics to do so.

Paranormal Activity has comer along way since the simple delights of the first one.  The film was hardly known until that now infamous story involving Steven Spielberg entered the news.  If you do not know this story then you really should not call yourself a horror fan because it was that story alone that cemented the reputation of the original and the reason why it was rushed into cinema's.  Its also Spielberg whose responsible for the film becoming what it is now.  The original ending had Katie kill Micah before walking up to the camera and slitting her throat but that was deemed too dark and it was changed to the one where after she has killed Micah, she rocks back and fore for a few hours until the police turn up who then shoot her dead.  Both versions are on the original DVD release, but Spielberg wanted more and the version we saw opened up a whole new possibilities which of course because of the record takings, the studio have bee more than happy to explore! I sometimes wonder where the series would have gone if the original ending stayed intact because I was one of a few who actually thought the franchise would be better if it went from different story in each sequel but having seen the awful Paranormal Activity: Tokyo Nights, I can see why Spielberg is more clever than me.  The film does not work when its taken out of the universe its created and that is why we have now had three films involving the character of Katie. The original was such a simple delight for what it was.  Here we had two people who suspected they were being haunted and set up a cameras in their bedroom.  Such simplicity led to many chills and I remember a review by our old friends over on Cult Of Cinema in which the critic Dante Inferno called the whole "watch" experience of being drowned.  It really was a wonderful film, helped all the more by the fact it was different to all the gore porn that was and still is, hitting the market. To get a franchise going the creators needed to add more weight to the story and we was introduced to Katie's sister Kristi was heavily pregnant and was also suffering from things that go bump in the night.  The film worked like a prequel/sequel with the storyline running across the same path as what was happening in the original.  Of course by adding the new additions to what was a simple concept, it also cause a spilt in the fan camp with those not accepting the fact that Katie not once in the first film mentioned that the same thing was happening to her sister.  It was an argument which I fully understood from those who were angry at the changes but the film had enough worthwhile scares and jolts to forget those gapping plot holes.  The problem we have now is that because the studio want to keep the money rolling in, we now have a third film and yes you have guessed it, a further expansion in the story and those who complained about those holes are only going to complain even more. Paranormal Activity 3 sees the plot line go back 18 years before the events of the original.  To explain this we witness an opening five minute scene of a heavily pregnant Kristie painting the nursery and Katie walks in to ask can she store some boxes in her basement.  In those boxes are old VHS tapes in which the two sisters wonder what are on them.  The fact they do not watch this there and then or the fact they never have, and the fact I can not get my head around the fact Katie has these anyhow (when you get to the end you understand why?) is the first question that will be ringing through your head.  We do get a clever twist on the "burglary" from the sequel which did stun me but I can not go into that in this review because it spoils the ending of this film. The film zooms into 1988 which left me wondering "who is watching these tapes?" and we see the two sisters when they were young, a nice little touch because we now see this "ghost" start his little game many years earlier, something which Katie referenced in the last two films.  The reason why all this gets filmed again is because the mother Julie (Lauren Bittner)has a new boyfriend Dennis (Christopher Nicholas Smith) who just happens to be a Wedding Cameraman, quite handy really when you need some camera's. At first the film like them all starts off slow and its only when we have the first hint of bedroom sex (an answer to all those wise cracks in the audience) that there is something amiss.  The horny duo are stopped in their tracks when a earthquake strikes and when Dennis looks back on the tapes, he notices the dust hit what seems like a shape in the bedroom. Before we the viewer know it, the film is back on track and the well known formula of camera's set around the house in hope to see things spooky.  By now we all know what is coming and like always the spooks start slow before building to a violent conclusion. After the third time though do the scares hold up? Well yes, there are three wonderful jump your skin moments with two actually not involving the ghost at all.  One thing you can guarantee with these films is having a good fright and I loved some of the set-pieces here.  Also we get ones scene which is the best the franchise has ever done, it involves a white bed sheet which is the coolest image since Michael Myers decided to put one over his entire body way back in the 70's. The ghost which is finally given a name here "Toby" is still a vicious bastard when he wants to be but this time while the scares are good we do get the first signs of creaking famility in the franchise and I was not hooked like I once was.  Furniture gets moved, a bit of sleep waking and watching others sleep, lights flicker, yes fans all what you have seen before is here and present but this time does not chill like it once did! It seems though the writers expected this and then comes the last twenty minutes which for the first time in many years of an horror franchise, stunned me for its sudden turn.  No one will guess what is coming because it rips up everything that went on before.  I honestly had to watch this film twice to get my head around the whole change around.  I have never seen a franchise jump onto a different path before and I am still wondering if it was a good thing or not! My wife who watches nearly every horror with me called the last twenty minutes "the most frightening" of the entire franchise and I can see where she is coming from because if it strikes the right chord with you then you are in for a good time, but for me while I write this I am beginning to doubt the direction this has taken.  Gone are the clues from the second film which are no longer relevant, we now have a whole new path but by creating it they have left even more unanswered questions. Katie mentions a fire when she was a child in the original when does that happen?  What happens after the events of this?  How can Katie and her sister forget everything and how the heck did those videotapes end up with Katie and never watched?  To answer these they really need to make yet another prequel otherwise fans like myself will be left deeply frustrated because you can not set out a story with clues and then change the plot when you want to and leave unanswered questions, I mean what is this?  Lost If you love the first two then you will enjoy this third film because it does not much wrong, you may need to suspend disbelief but then you have had to for a while, but its the end I am more curious about from fans!  Because I be asking the question "what did you think of it?  Jump the Shark? or a clever new plot vice?".... BTW....Must give the creators a must deserved credit for releasing a trailer that has scenes not in the movie.  A really clever twist and markerting ploy there!                                                                  3 OUT OF 5

_____________________________

Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

http://horrorcultfilms.co.uk/2012/01/horrorcultfilms-movie-awards-of-2011-all-the-winners-right-here-of-our-first-ever-hcf-awards/

(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2575
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 9/11/2011 7:50:08 PM   
evil bill


Posts: 6716
Joined: 19/7/2006
From: mordor/ uk
quote:

ORIGINAL: HughesRoss

 PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 3  THE HUGHES VERDICT!  Its amazing really, just when the studio's were worried that the had milked every last drop out of their guaranteed Halloween box office gold SAW franchise then along comes another title to take over the mantle.  At the moment everything Paranormal Activity is gold for the horror genre.  The second sequel has broken its own takings and the critical acclaim it has received has only gained more positivity to the franchise, already they are plans for a 4th film to be released-yes you guessed it-next Halloween and for me who was seduced by the beauty of the original only a mere three years ago, I was excited to sit down to watch the new film even though I am one of the last HCF critics to do so.

Paranormal Activity has comer along way since the simple delights of the first one.  The film was hardly known until that now infamous story involving Steven Spielberg entered the news.  If you do not know this story then you really should not call yourself a horror fan because it was that story alone that cemented the reputation of the original and the reason why it was rushed into cinema's.  Its also Spielberg whose responsible for the film becoming what it is now.  The original ending had Katie kill Micah before walking up to the camera and slitting her throat but that was deemed too dark and it was changed to the one where after she has killed Micah, she rocks back and fore for a few hours until the police turn up who then shoot her dead.  Both versions are on the original DVD release, but Spielberg wanted more and the version we saw opened up a whole new possibilities which of course because of the record takings, the studio have bee more than happy to explore! I sometimes wonder where the series would have gone if the original ending stayed intact because I was one of a few who actually thought the franchise would be better if it went from different story in each sequel but having seen the awful Paranormal Activity: Tokyo Nights, I can see why Spielberg is more clever than me.  The film does not work when its taken out of the universe its created and that is why we have now had three films involving the character of Katie. The original was such a simple delight for what it was.  Here we had two people who suspected they were being haunted and set up a cameras in their bedroom.  Such simplicity led to many chills and I remember a review by our old friends over on Cult Of Cinema in which the critic Dante Inferno called the whole "watch" experience of being drowned.  It really was a wonderful film, helped all the more by the fact it was different to all the gore porn that was and still is, hitting the market. To get a franchise going the creators needed to add more weight to the story and we was introduced to Katie's sister Kristi was heavily pregnant and was also suffering from things that go bump in the night.  The film worked like a prequel/sequel with the storyline running across the same path as what was happening in the original.  Of course by adding the new additions to what was a simple concept, it also cause a spilt in the fan camp with those not accepting the fact that Katie not once in the first film mentioned that the same thing was happening to her sister.  It was an argument which I fully understood from those who were angry at the changes but the film had enough worthwhile scares and jolts to forget those gapping plot holes.  The problem we have now is that because the studio want to keep the money rolling in, we now have a third film and yes you have guessed it, a further expansion in the story and those who complained about those holes are only going to complain even more. Paranormal Activity 3 sees the plot line go back 18 years before the events of the original.  To explain this we witness an opening five minute scene of a heavily pregnant Kristie painting the nursery and Katie walks in to ask can she store some boxes in her basement.  In those boxes are old VHS tapes in which the two sisters wonder what are on them.  The fact they do not watch this there and then or the fact they never have, and the fact I can not get my head around the fact Katie has these anyhow (when you get to the end you understand why?) is the first question that will be ringing through your head.  We do get a clever twist on the "burglary" from the sequel which did stun me but I can not go into that in this review because it spoils the ending of this film. The film zooms into 1988 which left me wondering "who is watching these tapes?" and we see the two sisters when they were young, a nice little touch because we now see this "ghost" start his little game many years earlier, something which Katie referenced in the last two films.  The reason why all this gets filmed again is because the mother Julie (Lauren Bittner)has a new boyfriend Dennis (Christopher Nicholas Smith) who just happens to be a Wedding Cameraman, quite handy really when you need some camera's. At first the film like them all starts off slow and its only when we have the first hint of bedroom sex (an answer to all those wise cracks in the audience) that there is something amiss.  The horny duo are stopped in their tracks when a earthquake strikes and when Dennis looks back on the tapes, he notices the dust hit what seems like a shape in the bedroom. Before we the viewer know it, the film is back on track and the well known formula of camera's set around the house in hope to see things spooky.  By now we all know what is coming and like always the spooks start slow before building to a violent conclusion. After the third time though do the scares hold up? Well yes, there are three wonderful jump your skin moments with two actually not involving the ghost at all.  One thing you can guarantee with these films is having a good fright and I loved some of the set-pieces here.  Also we get ones scene which is the best the franchise has ever done, it involves a white bed sheet which is the coolest image since Michael Myers decided to put one over his entire body way back in the 70's. The ghost which is finally given a name here "Toby" is still a vicious bastard when he wants to be but this time while the scares are good we do get the first signs of creaking famility in the franchise and I was not hooked like I once was.  Furniture gets moved, a bit of sleep waking and watching others sleep, lights flicker, yes fans all what you have seen before is here and present but this time does not chill like it once did! It seems though the writers expected this and then comes the last twenty minutes which for the first time in many years of an horror franchise, stunned me for its sudden turn.  No one will guess what is coming because it rips up everything that went on before.  I honestly had to watch this film twice to get my head around the whole change around.  I have never seen a franchise jump onto a different path before and I am still wondering if it was a good thing or not! My wife who watches nearly every horror with me called the last twenty minutes "the most frightening" of the entire franchise and I can see where she is coming from because if it strikes the right chord with you then you are in for a good time, but for me while I write this I am beginning to doubt the direction this has taken.  Gone are the clues from the second film which are no longer relevant, we now have a whole new path but by creating it they have left even more unanswered questions. Katie mentions a fire when she was a child in the original when does that happen?  What happens after the events of this?  How can Katie and her sister forget everything and how the heck did those videotapes end up with Katie and never watched?  To answer these they really need to make yet another prequel otherwise fans like myself will be left deeply frustrated because you can not set out a story with clues and then change the plot when you want to and leave unanswered questions, I mean what is this?  Lost If you love the first two then you will enjoy this third film because it does not much wrong, you may need to suspend disbelief but then you have had to for a while, but its the end I am more curious about from fans!  Because I be asking the question "what did you think of it?  Jump the Shark? or a clever new plot vice?".... BTW....Must give the creators a must deserved credit for releasing a trailer that has scenes not in the movie.  A really clever twist and markerting ploy there!                                                                  3 OUT OF 5

Hell of a review,but for me this franchise has run out of steam,loved the first,second was ok,but three i'll give it a miss till it turns up on the HORROR channel.


_____________________________

"You listen to me now,i will find you and i will kill you!"

(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2576
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 9/11/2011 10:40:20 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr
You should give it a watch just for that bed sheet scare.....awesome set piece!..... Thanks for the praise Bill!

_____________________________

Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

http://horrorcultfilms.co.uk/2012/01/horrorcultfilms-movie-awards-of-2011-all-the-winners-right-here-of-our-first-ever-hcf-awards/

(in reply to evil bill)
Post #: 2577
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 17/11/2011 8:22:24 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr


RUNNING TIME84 Minutes OUT NOW TO RENT AND BUY  What is it all about? In the depths of the Korvatunturi mountains, 486 metres deep, lies the closest ever guarded secret of Christmas. The time has come to dig it up!  This Christmas everyone will believe in Santa Claus  The Hughes Veridct! We all know what Father Christmas does.  He goes into kids bedrooms and empties his sack!  Ok! All that was missing from that sentence was a Sid James laugh because that opening line I just wrote was such a Carry On kind of gag that I feel ashamed that I have lowered myself to that standard.  But my point for all this is that when you actually look at the figure of the man in red then he really is a creepy fella.  I mean there are the parents sleeping in their beds and a strange man goes into their kids bedroom and watches over them.  Yes he leaves presents but has he ever had a police check?  Do we really know we can trust him in the cold air of night?   The fact not many horror films have jumped on this notion is a peculiar one, yes we have had the slash flick Silent Night Deadly Night which created such ripples that it caused the start of the "end" of the Slash Boom in the early eighties.  A few years back we had Santa's Slay, another horror flick which so tongue in cheek that it could not be taken serious and that is all we have had really because the studio's see Christmas as an ideal time for Kid flicks and not for seeing the man with the white beard carrying an axe and killing everyone in sight.  Its with great pleasure then to announce that finally we have a film to fill the empty void, a real and I mean, real good horror film and it arrives in the shape of Rare Exports, a film from the land from Finland that may just yet beat Troll Hunter as best foreign horror flick of the year. Then even just by writing this review I feel bad because I am describing this as an horror film when in reality its not.  Yes we see the mutilated bodies of animals and some axe in the head set-pieces, but in reality this is more of a kids action film, a kind of film we all loved when the likes of The Goonies and Monster Squad were all the rage.  In other words readers, this is everything Super 8 was not.  Deeply dark but a fantastic fun ride that many will cherish from the off. We start with a discovery at the top of the Korvatunturi mountain.  Here we see a bunch of workers discovering a massive ice block which has been left undiscovered since ancient times.  Looking on is the young Pietari (Onni Tommila)  who senses in the air that something is not quite right and when he wakes one morning to find footprints by his window ledge he begins to read about the "true" Father Christmas and this one is not the Ho Ho Ho jolly fellow you see in that "Holiday is coming" TV ad that plays every year in December.  This guy is one vicious bastard who takes bad children and "eats them".  Oh yes, do not worry about having that new XBox 360 game under the tree, just be happy to be alive if he does not come down your chimney.  Yes guys it really is that dark and its a wicked idea.                                                                      While th workers are up at the mountain digging away, Pietari reads up on the history of this crazy man and when mutilated bodies of animals are discovered, it is only he who knows the truth but like all films of this nature-who would believe him?, , Certainlly not his father Rauno (Jorma Tommila) who is more worried that all the reindeers are dead and without no meat to sell, how can he and the local community get by in the winter months. The film takes a dark turn when a trap outside the house "for wandering Reindeers" is filed and when the father and son look down, instead of seeing a dead animal. they see a wounded man with a white beard whose nose sniffs the air frantically when Pietari is nearby.  Getting some help, the father cleans up this creepy figure and decides to sell him to the people up on the mountain, but when they get there with his son it tow, the film takes a rather unexpected but rather wonderful sudden turn! Finnish writer-director Jalmari Helander has delivered a rather most perfect anti-Christmas film.  The pace is relentless and its so dark than it melted my horror heart.  My main problem with the film that it may be just too tame for those who love their horror full of gore,  yes we do get moments of pure horror but there are only brief glimpses, this. like all films of this genre is about a journey of a child turning to an adult and we see it here with Pietari who carries the film all on his little shoulders. The yell of the word "TTTTRRRRRRROOOOOLLLLLLLLLLL!" may mean that the Troll Hunter has taken the plaudits this year but I can see Rare Exports becoming the cult classic in years to come, a film destined to watch when the big day comes, because not since Phoebe Cates told everyone her nightmare story about what happened to her dad one Christmas have I enjoyed yet another delicious dark snowy tale!                                                                                               4 OUT OF 5

_____________________________

Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

http://horrorcultfilms.co.uk/2012/01/horrorcultfilms-movie-awards-of-2011-all-the-winners-right-here-of-our-first-ever-hcf-awards/

(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2578
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 18/11/2011 2:28:30 PM   
HughesRoss


Posts: 5668
Joined: 19/12/2008
From: Merthyr


 What is it all about? A demented mother (Rebecca De Mornay)  is called to help her three sons who have got themselves into a bit of a mess and have somehow broke into their old home and kidnapped the new residents and their friends.  All she wants is for the hostages to be co-operative, but when the tensions rise so does her temper and the last thing you want is to make Mother angry!   The Hughes Verdict! Lets get my main gripe about this film out of the room before I start?  Why called Mother's Day?  I mean any avid horror fan will look at that title and think "here we go!" yet another horror film that follows in the "lets kill on a certain day!" horror cycle that we have seen over the years.  From this we have seen the likes of Halloween, Friday 13th, April Fool's Day, and countless others, and I was expecting a kind of story which we saw a mother have her kids taken from her and because she could not suffer the pain of being alone on the day we celebrate for all  mothers, she goes psycho and kills everyone in her path. Hey that is not a bad idea for "slash" so any budding filmmakers reading this-if I see a film like that in the next two years, you know where to send the cheque.  Anyway the fact nothing like that this happens doing the film and also that its not even set on Mother's Day makes me question "Who came up with this title?"

Mother's Day is yet a new film to enter the torture porn genre even though its not as brutal as the many other films that have come out in recent years.  This is not like a Saw or a Hostel and I enjoyed this horror simply because we see the return of an actress who came to fore in the early nineties with a standout performance that earned her much love from horror fans.  Yes Rebecca De Mornay is back! and it feels as if she has never been away.

In 1994 Mornay stole the whole horror year with her performance as the Nanny Peyton Flanders in the critical acclaimed and blockbuster hit The Hand That Rocks The Cradle.   I remember the hype as a young lad and the film was a huge hit considering it was released doing the wave of similar films.  The 90's was obsessed with normal people turning out to be psycho's all started because Glen Close made some Rabbit soup and from there we saw deranged Stepfathers, cops, dentists, you name it we had it all and yet it was Mornay performance being the nanny from hell which is often remembered.  The film itself was ok, a bit tame for my tastes but she did excel in it and what should have took her on a path to instant stardom, somehow didn't and she ended up making some pretty poor films with Guilty as Sin being one that stands out like a sore thumb.  The only film at the top of my head that I can stands out with her being in and was quite good was the straight to video hit Blind Side, but then the film was helped along by yet another psychotic turn from Rutger Hauer, always a good thing to watch in days gone by. Mother's Day is a return to form for the ice cold stare in which in some sort of strange bizarre way is played like a sequel to Rock The Cradle.  What I mean by that is this could easily be "what would have happened if the nanny won the day and stole the kids!" because she shows her once again that her love for her children is quite demented and she will go to any lengths to protect them, even if it means a bit of torture. We start with three brothers, the most vicious bunch of bastards who have done a Reservoir Dog kind of bank robbery, in other words "botched" which leaves one of them shot in the stomach and virtually bleeding to death.  They find shelter in their nearby family home, a place they have not been for a while and when they break in and put their dying brother on the sofa, they are stunned to find the house is not like it was.  New furniture and different colour walls is a sign that mother has not told them that she has moved and before they can leg it, the new owner comes up from the basement - where the obvious party is taking place- and in panic the brothers take everyone hostage and an impossible situation as just become a heck of a lot worse!  The only way to get out of this situation is to phone "their mother" and soon Mornay is on the scene. At first she plays it wonderfully.  Kind and concerned about the way her sons have treated the hostages, she tries her best to be warm and helpful but every horror fan will know that underneath the gentle smile is just a complete bitch ready to surface and as the tension rises so does her mask slip and Mother goes to show just who the brothers have taken their attitude and style from. With director Darren Lynn Bousman in the chair, many fans will know what to expect from the man who helmed numerous Saw films but to be fair to Bousman he shows great restrain here and knows he does not need to fill the film full of pointless torture scenes.  The film actually does well grabbing the tension around you and it really does not let go because every fan will await the moment for when Mother loses it!  I really have not seen a performance this year in a horror film that rallies around such a performance and make no mistake, if the film had any other actress in the role apart from Mornay then this film would not be half as good! There are a few really good scenes, one outside a cash-point which is devilishly evil, a brilliant gunshot at the head delighted my horror taste and we then quite possibly have one of the finest torture scenes of the year involving a boiling kettle which made me squirm in my very seat.  Mother's Day is an enjoyable treat that is much better than the Troma original that this is loosely based on, its a perfect rental for a Saturday night and it perfectly fits into the category "of an easy watch!"- Not great but not awful either........                                                                                      3 OUT OF 5 

_____________________________

Our first ever HCF MOVIE AWARDS

http://horrorcultfilms.co.uk/2012/01/horrorcultfilms-movie-awards-of-2011-all-the-winners-right-here-of-our-first-ever-hcf-awards/

(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2579
RE: Hughes Horror Collection - 18/11/2011 2:32:08 PM   
Gimli The Dwarf


Posts: 77676
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Central Park Zoo
Not heard of Rare Exports. Looks good!


_____________________________

So, sir, we let him have it right up! And I have to report, sir, he did not like it, sir.

Fellow scientists, poindexters, geeks.

Yeah, Mr. White! Yeah, science!

Much more better!

(in reply to HughesRoss)
Post #: 2580
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