3 items from 2017
“I make movies that make no sense,” Seijun Suzuki would often say, and he wasn’t being modest. The prolific director, who died earlier this month at the age of 93, was the Jackson Pollock of Japanese cinema, an irrepressibly creative artist who painted with gobs of color and geysers of fake blood in order to defy the strictures of narrative and remind viewers that movies are more than the stories they tell.
His hyper-stylized gangster sagas, which had a way of turning the most basic B-picture plots into unfettered symphonies for the senses, were born out of a rabid intolerance for boredom; audiences never knew what was going to happen next, and sometimes it’s tempting to suspect that Suzuki didn’t either. Few directors ever did more to fundamentally demolish our understanding of what film could be, and even fewer did so while working under the auspices of a major production studio. »
- David Ehrlich
After 2014’s John Wick surprised everyone by merging the slickness of modern action and the absurdity and ultraviolence of the ’80s, its sequel was all but guaranteed to up the ante in almost every way possible. Released this past weekend, John Wick: Chapter 2 didn’t disappoint. As described by our own Ignatiy Vishnevetsky, the movie’s action “is entertainingly surreal,” with “blood splatters and brain matter paint[ing] the walls of a gallery like a Jackson Pollock canvas.”
The original spawned a multitude of pieces on Wick’s kill count, but none so elaborate as Australian designer George Hatzis. Over at Visu, Hatzis brought Wick’s badassery to vivid life with a colorful chart breaking down the action by scene, weapon, accuracy, shots fired, head shots, and kill count (the total was 77).
Well, now he’s done the same for John Wick: Chapter 2, a film that ...
- Randall Colburn
As far as “unsolved mystery” horror films go, The Axe Murders Of Villisca is nothing more than generic at best. Why prey on such a famed case in – wait, let’s rewind quick. Are you even aware of this tragic Iowa slaughterfest? Let’s revisit June 9th, 1912. According to legend, a family was brutally murdered at night by a axe-wielding maniac who was never arrested. One by one, the Moore family was beaten to death – some with the axe’s bluntest side, others hacked and slashed. A traveling Presbyterian minister confessed to the murders, claiming he heard windmills in his head before blacking out – but no convictions were made, and the deed went unpunished.
This brings us to writer/director Tony E. Valenzuela’s ghost story spinoff, which sees three modern-day teens sneak into one of America’s most haunted locations. Caleb (Robert Adamson) and Denny (Jarrett Sleeper) already had »
- Matt Donato
3 items from 2017
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