Friday, March 6, 2009

My Recent Horrors...

While I like writing the lengthy, in depth reviews (I hope you like reading them), I have been watching a lot of horror movies in the last few months that I won't be able to get to (as I am trying to keep reviewing movies that are fresh in my mind). I would like to at least give a few shout outs to the movies I have watched, just so you people may have a little more of an idea about what is good and what isn't. A lot of these have appeared in my Netflix Instant Watch queue, so I figured I would give them a try. Anyway, here's my best estimation of what I've watched recently:

Rest Stop: This movie never really decides if it wants to be a slasher flick or a psychological thriller. The bad part of this means that it doesn't succeed at either. It's a pretty mediocre movie with one quite decent scene where a girl has to euthanize an injured cop (and doesn't succeed right away). Other than that, pretty worthless.

Timber Falls: Pretty standard horror flick about a couple that goes hiking in the backwoods and get assaulted by rednecks. Not a great film, but decent. Really have a feeling it's just going to fade into the back of my mind though as it didn't stand out on any account for me.

The Signal: This movie impressed me a lot. It was in Neflix's Instant View for a while, so I recommend watching it if you can. The world goes crazy and a couple try to find each other. It was written and directed by 3 different people, each taking a third of the movie for themselves. It's surprisingly well acted, disturbingly funny at parts, and all around a very trippy experience. Worth checking out for sure.

[rec]: Yeah, I watched it. Of course, I liked it, like every other horror person will tell you. Go see it if you haven't, it's excellent.

Quarantine: While it lacks the punch of the original [rec], it's a worthy remake that did some things very well. Definitely near the top of my big hollywood horror of the last few years. See Quarantine before you see [rec] because otherwise Quarantine will disappoint you a bit.

Otis: Touted as "Juno for the horror set", I was curious. I didn't really like Juno, but I was wondering what that meant. Apparently that meant watching a fat guy get slapped around by Kevin Pollack and watching Daniel Stern get slapped around by his family (metaphorically). It was bland, uninteresting, and pretty predictable. On the plus side, Bostin Christopher (who plays the title character) was refreshingly good in the movie, so that was a bright spot.

Rogue: Wolf Creek's director Greg McClean comes back with a worthy follow up. Wolf Creek is one of my favorite recent horror movies, and Rogue shows that McClean can still do it. It's the best nature run amok film of the last year or so and actually makes you feel like this is what would happen to you (if a gigantic crocodile was trying to eat you, that is). Check it out on DVD now (I got it for cheap at Target).

The Backwoods: Moody and rather slow, this film (starring Gary Oldman and Paddy Considine) is fairly impressive. I liked it a lot actually. It was well directed and interesting and even though it was slow at parts, never lost my interest. Also available for fairly cheap (Best Buy, I believe).

Splinter: I will write a more in depth review when this one comes out on DVD (supposedly in April), but all I can say is it was an impressive little flick. Very pleased with it.

Eden Lake: Go buy this on DVD if you haven't seen it. Like [rec], I'm not going to tell you anything new. Go see it for yourself, it's damn good.

Jack Brooks: Monster Slayer: A decent little throw back to some 80s horror. The make-up effects were all traditional and good, making it fun to watch as Robert Englund transformed into a hideous creature that wasn't Freddy. It wasn't a great movie, but if you happen across it, give it a watch. It'll at least entertain you for an hour and a half.

Shiver: Pretty bland Spanish horror flick that I wanted to like because it was from the same studio as Pan's Labyrinth and The Orphanage (both excellent movies). But ultimately, the movie falls straight into mediocrity. It's not particularly scary. It's well shot, but boring. I just couldn't like it, as much I wanted to.

Shrooms: One of those movies where if the ending would have been different, it would have rated higher. But, instead, it was unnecessary and detracted from the rest of the film. It wasn't a bad little slasher with some interesting scenes, but wasn't anything revolutionary. Again, Instant View it if you would like, but I wouldn't buy it.

Wind Chill: I found this in my Instant View and was pleasantly surprised. It was well done, well acted, had sympathetic characters, and some good scares thrown in. Another well shot movie, I may have to revisit this one after I watch it again. I think Netflix took it off Instant View, but I would still recommend giving it a view. Nice to see a small budget American horror flick that entertained me.

Day of the Dead (2008): This movie wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. That being said, I would never say it was a good movie, but I was expecting a lot worse. I have to admit, I don't much care for the original (sacrilege, I know), but it was interesting. At least this remake didn't just take a big steaming shit on the original, but it didn't do it much justice. This movie did reinforce one thing for me though: I hate Nick Cannon.

The Unborn: You know, when a movie touts that it was written by the co-writer of the Dark Knight (because no one actually knows who David S. Goyer is besides me, I guess), some people might think that's a great thing. Well, 2 things: David S. Goyer is actually only credited with the story, not the actual script for The Dark Knight, and David S. Goyer has written such gems as Demonic Toys, Nick Fury: Agent of Shield, and The Crow: City of Angels. He's not a particularly good writer, and this movie proves it. Even the interesting scene they show in the trailers of the man's head being upside down is uninteresting in the movie. Goyer also directed it, which he also did for Blade Trinity and we know how well that worked out. This movie was bad Hollywood crap.

There's what I've been up to lately. What do you guys have to say about that?


  1. Being way behind on my watching, out of your list I have seen "Splinter" and "Wind Chill". Both I liked. Good to have something that was different and fun to watch.

    As for your other reviews, I really have got to get me ass in gear and see some of these, especially the much-raved about [rec]. Feel like I am being a bad horror geek for putting this one off so long. >:(

  2. The mention of Paddy Considine, I have to ask, has Dead Man's Shoes een released in the U.S.? Any have you seen it? If so what are your thoughts?
    I don't even know how to start to describe it, but it is a great piece of cinema, and disturbing.

  3. Rogue - Love both this movie and Wolf Creek. Mclean's such an underrated director.

    Backwoods - Another underrated flick that not enough people talk about. In fact, I think this is the first blog other than mine i've seen mention it.

    Day of the Dead remake - Honestly one of the worst films i've ever seen. So, so bad. How did such a classic get turned into such shit?

  4. I've not seen Dead Man's Shoes, but I think I will have to. Thanks for the tip, Monkeyman!

    And Johnny, I had actually just bought and watched The Backwoods (because it was 6 bucks at Best Buy and I love trying new horror like that) and was impressed when I saw something about it on your blog.

  5. Actually, Dead Man's Shoes is available on Instant View. Gonna watch that one!

  6. Where did you obtain [REC]?!?
    I've been dying to see this one!