Posts Tagged ‘movie review’

“Needle” is a horror film by director John V. Soto set within college friends.  The casts include Michael Dorman, Travis Fimmel and Jessica Marais.

Ben (Dorman), a college student inherits the family’s endowment from his father who died 2 years ago.  Along with it is a mysterious box just recently found by the legal representative.  He later found that the box is a tool for revenge, but there’s one little problem.  The evil device was stolen and has been killing his friends.  Ben and his brother Marcus (Fimmel) are out on a mission to solve the mystery and find the killer.

Not frightening at all but totally gory.  Slow pace but detailed.  The script though, isn’t an A.  They could have written a nicer one considering that the plot has a lot of potential. It’s not horrific in a way that you will be scared of the dark or some supernatural beings but instead, to an unseen old practice that can be so demented.  Witchcraft is not really our daily dosage in modern days.  But I know for sure they still exist.  I like the idea of introducing a device from a voodoo practice.  Infusing a dash of contemporaneity but keeping the traditional belief.

Excellent cinematography.  The film has a very good and promising plot.  The voodoo concept is something fresh.  A horror film that doesn’t suggests startling and hair-raising moments but instead mystifying.  The ambiguous killer wasn’t revealed until the end part of the movie.  What’s more interesting is that you can never guess who and how the device was acquired by the killer and why.  It is highly creative.  The ways the bodies are mutilated are definitely disturbing and disgusting.  Special effects were great especially with the bloody carving and dismembering of the body parts.

I like “Needle”.  The machine used may come pretty handy if I simply want to break someone’s neck.  Throughout the film, it will leave you guessing who the next victim is and who the killer is.  It’s simple yet full of mystery.  It wasn’t really classified as a horror movie but based from the plot that suggests that it’s a voodoo thing, then it may belong to one.  It sure is scary if you know someone is trying to kill you in a vicious way.  I mean who wouldn’t if you watch yourself getting sliced and stabbed by an unseen force.  It’s worth-watching.

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These days, a lot of horror films are based from true stories. Not to mention, almost half of them are remakes.  “The Amityville Horror” didn’t get away from this cliché.  Directed by Andrew Douglas and produced by the well-known Michael Bay, this film made it big when it hit the cinemas on 2005.  It was excellently played by leading cast Ryan Reynolds and Melissa George.

“The Amityville Horror” is based from the 1979 film and a book by Jay Anson in 1977 tells the story of a haunted house.  The first family who resides is the DeFeo family.  The eldest son Ronnie murdered his whole family in their sleep on the 28th night.  He claimed that a voice told him to kill them because they are demons.  George Lutz (Reynolds) and Melissa Lutz (George) decided to move in despite of the dreadful history of the house.   Over the next few weeks George starts acting differently.  Eventually, strange occurrences start to come about that seems to transform George from a persistent man to an aggressive stranger with mysterious motive.  Melissa, who encounters daunting visions and hears whispers from a cold spooky voice, is determined to seek for the truth and discovered evil behind her house working to triumphantly win over them.

I won’t be comparing this film to its predecessor because (1) it would be prejudice; a movie deserves its own merits and (2) I haven’t seen the first movie.  I don’t expect everything in this film to remain faithful to the true story.   But as it turns out, every spine-chilling moment are true to the story, adding total horrific package all over.  The film was laid in a smooth and perfect pace.  Enough for an average first-time enthusiast of “The Amityville Horror” story to catch up and get terrified.

Thumbs up for Reynolds playing the part of a delirious stepfather.  His possessed dreamy eyes unbelievably convince the character he plays.  At the beginning of the film, he showed the real emotion of an awkward man trying to win his step kids.  He slowly comes apart from being a likeable stepdad to a raging fiend.  Brilliant acting indeed.  Very natural and pretty plausible.  It’s as if I’m seeing Jack Nicholson in “The Shining” (also a commendable horror movie with great Nicholson performance).  He renders it with passion and intensity.  He definitely proves that he’s not just a pretty face with perfectly buffed abs but a flexible artist as well.

The film is packed with excellent cinematography, thrilled sound and music, scary graphics and credible special effects.  The quick out-of-the-blue appearances with Reynolds’ perfect timing to startle the audience, the black silhouette quickly rushing passed mirrors and evil hands emerging from the floor, tubs and ceiling add thrill and agitation.  The nostalgic Old Dutch Colonial house that seemed alive is eerie and gives me the chills just by staring at it.  Prehistoric and huge houses are really creepy.

I absolutely enjoyed this very scary thriller.  I’m a sucker for “based-from-true-stories” horror films and was easily sold to it.  This actually is a natural publicity.  A lot of people will be interested if the story in the film really happened.  But I didn’t regret watching “The Amityville Horror”.  There are few Hollywood horror movies that actually scare me and this is one of the few.  It keeps me watching out for startling scenes while seemingly holding my brother’s hands the whole time.  It’s suspenseful up to the very end.  It stuck into my mind how creepy it feels to live in an unfortunate “Dream” house.

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The Crazies is a remake of George Romero’s 1973 classic thriller.  Set in a little farming town in Pierce County, Iowa with leading performances of castcast Timothy Olyphant and Radha Mitchell, this horror film is directed by Breck Eisner. 

In a small town Ogden Marsh, Pierce County, Iowa, David Dutton (Olyphant) is the local sheriff and husband of town doctor Judy Dutton (Mitchell).  It’s a perfect little town.  Everyone knows everyone until a local, wearing a blank unresponsive look appears in a baseball game with a shotgun and acts suspiciously.  Things go awfully wrong when another townsfolk goes from humane to insane.  Inhabitants of this small town suddenly loosen their nuts when an unknown viral outbreak hits.  Not just crazy-“crazy” but the type that uncontrollably kills people and turning the peaceful town a living hell.  Desperate to get out of the unfortunate Ogden Marsh, the couple along with the deputy and doctor’s assistant horribly struggle for their lives as soldiers tries to take them away.  Not to mention, bunch of crazies are after them too.

The film opens at Ogden Marsh, a small town in Pierce County, Iowa consumed by fire; the fate in a couple of days later. Instantly, we’re made aware of what terror this once happy town will face.  This is a film that is not easy to decide if it’s a first-class horror film or a piece of crap.  The exemplary points equally weigh the rotten points.  The story and the cast’ acting is good as well as the cinematography but I can’t understand why it has to be so predictable and redundant.  And a frantic desperado in a film can’t just have a change of heart in a second to become a hero.  It’s just so not happening.   I was disappointed in expecting for the immense twist because clearly, there was none.

The Crazies is not exactly a zombie film but it’s related in some sort.  What makes it pass for a commendable film is the particular creativity in the choice of weapon to slay, clever wit of killing, some saggy foreskin, the insanely hyper behavior of the infected, crazies overrun, and an old story in a diverse setup.  It’s easy to grasp, frightening and gloomy in a rational mode.  I personally admire the part when the camera slowly sweeps from an end of the room to the other to reveal a crazy bitch.  Sound effects and musical score are nicely done.  It didn’t rely on loud thumping sound.  Instead, decomposing adversaries popping from nowhere startles the viewers.  The movie also educates the viewers to be responsible; that one error can never be corrected with another one, especially from the government.

A good quality film but pretty much predictable.  I can practically guess most scenes before it happens.  Not your typical gory zombie film which is actually good.  If you’re a zombie-genre fan who adores conventional zombie cliché, you would definitely say that this movie lacks intensity and action. But if you’re just looking for a moderate horror with sense, I recommend this.

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Coming Soon

Coming Soon

Thai horror “Coming Soon” did make an outstanding noise, with first-time director Sophon Sakdaphisit who is the writer of other successful horror movie genres “Shutter” and “Alone”.  The film was a hit in its 2008 release, with cast Chantavit Dhanasevi and pop singer (Punch) Worakarn Rochjanawach.  They and much of Sakdaphisit’s efforts fuel up plenty of hair-raising moments in this movie.

The film is set in a cinema, where a sloppy projectionist Shane (Dhanasevi) who is desperate of cash, agrees with his friend Yod to illicitly make a copy of the newly arrived horror film “Revenge of the Evil Spirit” before it reels in public. Unfortunately, strange things began as Yod mysteriously disappears.  When Shane tries to track him down, the mystery of the film’s true state reveals. Apprehending that he may be the next victim, he and his ex-girlfriend Som (Rochjanawach) try to investigate before the avenging sprite gets to him.

The lead cast did fine.  The witch, Chaba, a club-footed, stringy haired old woman makes a convincing evil hag especially the hanging part. The creative idea of a film within a film put the cinema viewers in a familiar setting and somehow feels that they are in it.  This heightens the chills provoking a few good leaping moments. Cinemas are generally quiet and dark and this film surely reckons the creeps.  The sound is really important and in this movie, it does perfect to add the chilling and riveting setup.  A handful of eerie scenes and a less gore made it just fine.  Sakdaphisit creates a perfect mood of making it brisk through deliberately setting different camera angles to consolidate direful effect.  He tot up a few twists before the big shot but is actually quite obvious then. There are few ghastly scenes and fresh surprises enough to stun the viewers.

The movie is brilliant genre-wise.  Full of intensity to deeply get into the viewers and not just the obvious first-hand dreadfulness.  After some melodramatic jolt during earlier scenes, it quickly diverts to the real good scares.  The film is surprisingly startling with both heartening feel and commendable dominant fears.

Definitely, a screamer!  This is one of the best Asian horror films.  Not really one of my favorites, though but one of those that made my spirit leaps out of my body.  Its story didn’t live up to the standards of most horror films.  Nonetheless, it’s pretty much scary and frightening.  It has enough spine-chilling moments and terrifying scenes that will certainly make us, genre fanatics excited to watch.  I wonder if Hollywood is going to remake this kind of movie just like “Dark Water”, “The Ring” and “The Eye”.

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