Archive for the Reviews Category

WRETCHED REVIEWS: TEXAS CHAINSAW 3D

Posted in Gore, Monsters, Movies, Reviews, Sequels, Serial Killers, Violence with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on January 4, 2013 by darklordbunnykins
Heather (Alexandra Daddario) is menaced by Leatherface (Dan Yeager)

Heather (Alexandra Daddario) is menaced by Leatherface (Dan Yeager)

TEXAS CHAINSAW 3D

Starring Alexandra Daddario, Trey Songz, and Tania Raymonde

Directed by John Luessenhop

Written by Adam Marcus & Debra Sullivan and Kirsten Elms

VVS Films

 

Nearly 40 years after its release, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is no longer “just” a horror classic. It is a brand, with the direct sequel Texas Chainsaw 3D, out today, just the latest iteration in a line of sequels, prequels, and remakes. The fact that this new Chainsaw manages to draw fresh blood makes it all the more impressive because, really, who thought this might actually be good?

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WRETCHED REVIEWS: CITADEL

Posted in Devils, Monsters, Movies, Reviews with tags , , , , , , on November 16, 2012 by darklordbunnykins

CITADEL

Starring Aneurin Barnard, Wunmi Mosaku and James Cosmo

Written and directed by Ciaran Foy

Mongrel Media

With the DLB about to become a father himself, the Irish horror film Citadel (which was mostly filmed in Glasgow) – about a single father trying to protect his infant daughter against evil – hit home pretty hard, even if its foundation is not quite rock solid.

Aneurin Barnard stars as Tommy Cowley, a young father left to raise his infant daughter Emma alone when his pregnant wife is attacked by a gang of hooded thugs in their crumbling council estate high rise. She is left comatose and he is left a single father crippled by agoraphobia. Tommy is helped by a caring (and attractive) nurse (Mosaku), but an encounter with a volatile priest (Cosmo) leaves him fearing for his and Emma’s safety as the thugs – who may in fact not quite be human – return.

Barnard is utterly convincing as the fearful Tommy. Beyond the makeup that makes him look as though he has not slept in a year, Barnard radiates sheer terror but also evinces a steely strength as a poor young dad who will do anything to protect the only family he has left.

Writer-director Ciaran Foy, making his feature debut, is smart enough not to reveal too much too soon. The nature of the hooded creatures that attack Tommy remains mysterious until near the film’s end, and Foy drops enough strange visual cues (empty buses, deserted streets, half-glimpsed horrors) to evoke Adrian Lyne’s classic mindfuck film Jacob’s Ladder. Things get a bit silly at the end as Tommy and the priest face off against a high rise full of the feral things, with back story filled in a bit too quickly by the priest, but the end result is mostly horrifying.

With its near-apocalyptic vision suburban blight and a creeping sense of menace, Citadel is one of most dread-filled (and least dreadful) horror films of 2012.

 

Rating: 3.5/5

 

Citadel opens in Toronto at Yonge & Dundas, with more cities to follow.

 

WRETCHED REVIEWS: SILENT HILL: REVELATION 3D

Posted in Eye Candy, Gore, Movies, Reviews, Sequels with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on October 26, 2012 by darklordbunnykins

SILENT HILL: REVELATION 3D

Starring Adelaide Clemens, Kit Harington and Sean Bean

Written and directed by Michael J. Bassett

Alliance

 

Having been on the Silent Hill: Revelation 3D set, I can tell you that the people who made it were committed, enthusiastic, and looking forward to taking the legacy of the first Silent Hill film, as well as that of the video games upon which the franchise is based, and moving them forward with the sequel.

Unfortunately, they failed.

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WRETCHED REVIEWS: PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 4

Posted in Devils, Ghosts, Halloween, Monsters, Movies, Reviews, Rue Morgue, Sequels, Supernatural, Witches with tags , , , , , , , on October 19, 2012 by darklordbunnykins

 

PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 4

Starring Kathryn Newton, Matt Shively and Katie Featherston

Directed by Ariel Schulman & Henry Joost

Written by Christopher Landon

Paramount

 

Rue Morgue Magazine received a lot of incredulous feedback when they published my review of the first Paranormal Activity film. I had written that it was the scariest filmgoing experience I had ever had; that was misinterpreted as “Paranormal Activity is the scariest movie ever made.”

It is true: the Paranormal Activity films are best experienced in a movie theatre, which is why Paramount uses night vision footage of screaming preview audiences to hype each new film.

So it will be interesting to see how audiences react to PA4. The guy to my left at last night’s screening was talking, checking his email and texting throughout, and said, “Thank God that’s over” at the end, while the four teen guys to my right were vocal about their enthusiasm for each set piece. (“Bitch got owned!” greeted the death of one character.)

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WRETCHED REVIEWS: SINISTER

Posted in Books, Devils, Ghosts, Gore, Movies, Reviews, Supernatural, Thriller with tags , , , , , , on October 11, 2012 by darklordbunnykins

SINISTER

Starring Ethan Hawke, Juliet Rylance, and Vincent D’Onofrio

Directed by Scott Derrickson

Written by Scott Derrickson and C. Robert Cargill

Alliance

 

How far would you go to secure your own legacy? That is the question at the heart of Sinister, The Exorcism of Emily Rose writer-director Scott Derrickson’s return to horror after helming the underrated sci-fi remake The Day the Earth Stood Still.

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WRETCHED REVIEWS: FRANKENWEENIE

Posted in Art, Eye Candy, Fantasy, Goth, Monsters, Movies, Reviews with tags , , , , , , , on October 5, 2012 by darklordbunnykins

FRANKENWEENIE

Voice cast includes Charlie Tahan, Martin Short and Catherine O’Hara

Directed by Tim Burton

Written by John August

Disney

It is slightly ironic that 30 years after Disney allegedly fired then fledgling animator Tim Burton for wasting their money making his (somewhat) macabre short movie Frankenweenie that the studio would hire the iconoclastic director to flesh out the concept in stop-motion and at feature-length. But Burton’s legacy of creativity and profit (he returned to the Mouse House to direct Alice in Wonderland) means that the professional oddball can pretty much do what he wants, with or without Johnny Depp.

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WRETCHED RE-ISSUES: THE ENTITY (1982)

Posted in Devils, DVD, Ghosts, Monsters, Movies, Reviews, Rue Morgue, Sex, Supernatural, Thriller with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 3, 2012 by darklordbunnykins

THE ENTITY (1982)

Starring Barbara Hershey, Ron Silver and David Labiosa

Directed by Sidney J. Furie

Written by Frank De Felitta

Anchor Bay

Despite online chatter that an Entity remake is on the way (allegedly helmed by Ringu director Hideo Nakata), I find that hard to imagine. First, what studio is going to finance a movie about a malevolent spirit that repeatedly rapes the leading lady? Secondly, which actress would be brave enough to step into the shoes of the original’s star, Barbara Hershey? While not perfect by any means, the original Entity remains a disturbing film made in a bolder time, and a new version would likely be toothless by comparison.

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WRETCHED REVIEWS: ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER (2012)

Posted in Eye Candy, Fantasy, Movies, Reviews, Vampires, Violence with tags , , , , , , , , , on June 21, 2012 by darklordbunnykins

ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER

Starring Benjamin Walker, Dominic Cooper and Rufus Sewell

Directed by Timur Bekmambetov

Written by Seth Grahame-Smith

20th Century Fox

Much like the founding father himself, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is as honest a title as any movie has ever had. Indeed, if you give yourself up to its sheer ridiculousness then you’ll have a great time in the theatre. If you are especially fond of the laws of physics or decide to tsk-tsk the assorted clunkers that litter Seth Grahame-Smith’s script – which he adapted from his own book – then you’ll likely shake your head in disbelief and wonder how many Duplass Brothers films the budget could have covered. To you I say fuck off.

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WRETCHED REVIEWS: THE CORRIDOR

Posted in Eye Candy, Gore, Movies, Reviews, Sci-Fi, Violence with tags , , , , on May 18, 2012 by darklordbunnykins

The Corridor

Starring Stephen Chambers, James Gilbert and David Patrick Flemming

Directed by Evan Kelly

Written by Josh MacDonald

D Films

 

Horror and sci-fi intersect in interesting if odd ways in The Corridor, an independent Canadian thriller low in budget but high in concept.

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WRETCHED REVIEWS: MOTHER’S DAY

Posted in DVD, Gore, Movies, Remakes, Reviews, Rue Morgue, Serial Killers, Thriller, Violence with tags , , , , , , , on May 12, 2012 by darklordbunnykins

MOTHER’S DAY

Starring Rebecca De Mornay, Jaime King and Patrick John Flueger

Directed by Darren Lynn Bousman

Written by Scott Milam

Alliance Home Entertainment

 

It’s hard not to get excited about a movie when the director is excited. When I spoke to director Darren Lynn Bousman back in summer 2009 from the Winnipeg set of Mother’s Day for Rue Morgue Magazine, the Saw II – IV director was ecstatic about the film’s progress and his cast, which included Rebecca De Mornay as the titular psycho mom.

So seeing Mother’s Day released straight to video (sorry, DVD and Blu-ray) nearly three years after completion of filming made me think that a) Bousman was getting screwed or b) the movie must be awful, despite fellow horror journalists reporting how good it was. Fortunately, the latter has turned out to be (mostly) the truth.

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