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Dark Touch (2013)
What a bloody mess! Ready for another?
Written and directed by Marina de Van, DARK TOUCH is a psychological thriller. In a remote country home in Ireland, 11 year old Neve(Missy Keating) is the soul survivor of a bloody massacre. Her mother and father and little brother appear to be savagely attacked and the officials believe homicidal hooligans are to blame. Neve keeps repeating that the house did it. The social services place the traumatized young girl with close friends of the family. Get ready for creepy! The nurturing couple do all they can to help Neve overcome the tragedy; but something dangerous and evil is ready to attack again.
If you watch very closely you can get a hint at what leads up to these horrible events. And on the other hand, after sitting through a terrible ending...you leave skeptical and a tad incoherent. Miss Keating is wonderful in this role. Rounding out the cast: Padraic Delaney, Marcella Plunkett, Charolotte Flyvholm, Steve Wall, Simon Boyle and Richard Donner.
Rails Into Laramie (1954)
The rail line has trouble reaching Laramie.
Universal-International presents a western thought of as mediocre by critics; but this doesn't mean the movie is not worth watching. RAILS into LARAMIE stars John Payne as Jefferson Harder, who intends to go to Laramie and clean up the wide-open town. Plus there is the matter of the railroad having problems building their line into town. Everybody around knows that all of the crime is coming from a gang taking orders from Jim Shanessy(Dan Duryea). No charges are able to stick in court because somehow the all-male juries are intimidated. Shanessy is surprised when his old buddy Harder arrives in town. It doesn't take long for Jeff Harder to find out that the railroad is not progressing, because Shanessy and saloon gal-pal Lou Carter(Mari Blanchard)are a tough team keeping the railhead out of Laramie so both can control their criminal activities without any interference. Well, Harder is in town and is determined to clean up Laramie, so the rail line can come through.
Decent old west saga that also features: Barton McLaine, Ralph Dumke, James Griffith, Joyce Mackenzie and Lee Van Cleef.
The San Francisco Story (1952)
It is about time to clean up San Francisco.
More of a drama than a western. Joel McCrea stars as Rick Nelson a successful miner in 1856. The Golden Gate city is wide-open with robbers and con artists. The local newspaper editor Jim Martin(Onslow Stevens)organizes a group of vigilantes to try a keep the peace. Nelson, a long time friend of the editor, is being persuaded to help the cause of justice and what is right. Political boss Andrew Cain(Sidney Blackmer)thinks of Frisco as being his personal domain. Rick becomes smitten with Cain's girlfriend Adelaide(Yvonne DeCarlo), one beautiful woman that knows how to influence men. Nelson must make a decision on who's side is he really going to work for.
Other players: Richard Erdman, John Raven, Florence Bates, Robert Foulk and Ralph Dumke.
Ride Beyond Vengeance (1966)
Revenge is an ugly thing.
Chuck Connors plays Jonas Trapp, a cowboy that falls in love with a beautiful, but high tone, woman Jessie Larkin(Kathryn Hays. Jessie's snobbish aunt warns her of stepping down to marry. She fakes a pregnancy to seal the deal. Jonas finally gets tired of living off of his wife's family money and decides to leave her. Trapp becomes a successful buffalo hunter and after having some wealth he wants to reunite with his wife. Its been over ten years, would she feel the same about him? Before he can find out, Jonas is warned by three men to not try and see her; he is beaten, robbed and branded before being left for dead. The buffalo hunter wants revenge and things get ugly.
This movie was not well received. And it is a good chance that Connors' fans wanted more out of this western. Even a well rounded cast of named stars couldn't make the film more than a mediocre dust buster. Also featured: Michael Rennie, Claude Akins, Joan Blondell, Gary Merrill and Gloria Grahame. You will also recognize Bill Bixby, Paul Fix and even Jamie Farr as the blacksmith.
Grave Encounters 2 (2012)
Proving a horror film was real.
A pretty decent sequel. All the video chat crap is pretty irritating. Nonetheless, film student Alex Wright(Richard Harmon)becomes obsessed with a horror flick that went viral on YouTube. It has been a year since a film crew spent a fatal night at a psychiatric hospital and for some reason is being covered up, as it really did not happen as depicted to millions of stunned PC screen watchers. Alex is so consumed by GRAVE ENCOUNTERS that he convinces a group of friends, most non-believers, to find the Collingwood Psychiatric Hospital in search of the truth. What they find are dark halls, empty rooms; all the remnants of a deserted hospital. They set up their cameras and all seems quiet until like a demon out of hell causes paranormal activity. A terrified camera crew now believes Alex...that *h!# really did happen in the movie. As the group gets smaller and all power is lost, pure evil is discovered.
Not so bad for a "found lost footage" type flick. There are some scary moments; but there is also some cheesy special effects and real bad acting. I think it is bad enough to be good! Like I said, after the video chat lead in is over with GRAVE ENCOUNTERS 2 is more than tolerable. Also getting cast credits are: Stephanie Bennett, Dylan Playfair, Howie Lai, Leann Lapp and Sean Rogerson.
Paranormal Activity 4 (2012)
Paranormal activity is hard to ignore.
This franchise continues, but I don't think it is getting any better. It has been about five years since Katie(Katie Featherston)went on her last rampage. Well, since the horrible entity inside showed what it is capable of. The young psychotic and the homicidal spirit that resides in her will have a new set of victims, as new neighbors move in down the street. A mysterious Alex(Kathryn Newton), her husband Ben(Matt Shively)and young son Wyatt(Alden Lovekamp)settle in their new home just a few houses down from Katie. The newcomers begin to experience hard to explain, let alone understand, activities in and around them. Just taking a bath or walking down a dark hall gives one second thoughts. Yes, there is terror and violence...and paranormal activity! Also in the cast: Brady Allen, Alexandria Lee, Alisha Boe and Stephen Dunham.
Calypso Heat Wave (1957)
Calypso takes over America.
Also known as JUKE BOX JAMBOREE. Barny Pearl(Michael Granger)is a gangster that rules jukeboxes and forces his way into the Disco Records Company. Mack Adams(Paul Langton),the company's owner, is forced to turn over half of the company; this angers Johnny Conroy(Johnny Desmond), the label's top seller, who is not going to give up any percentage of his royalties...turns his back on topping the charts by heading south to the islands.
Adams is convinced by his assistant Marti(Merry Anders)to search for Conroy and bring him back to start making records again. When Conroy is found, he is surrounded by island music called calypso. Brilliant idea...bring the new found music back to America and start a new musical sensation. Johnny's fan clubs and radio stations rekindle his career.
Besides Desmond, there is music by The Treniers, The Hi-Los and The Terriers and others like Maya Angelou. A few of the songs featured: "The Banana Boat Song", "Calypso Joe", "Trinidad Hubbub" and the title tune.
Other players in the cast: Meg Myles, Joel Grey, George E. Stone and Pierce Lyden.
The Shadows (2011)
Can't hide from the shadows.
Not necessarily low-budget, but THE SHADOWS feels like it is lacking something. Nonetheless a nice chiller as it gets going. Five friends survive a wreck at sea and find shelter on an island near a lighthouse. They manage to find an old uninhabited house that brings many assumptions with strange found artifacts. While a storm brews, the group becomes troubled with unexplained noises and the belief they are being watched by weird shadows that seem menacing. These friends become more unsettled as secrets among themselves are brought to light and if the atmosphere is not creepy enough...a scattered young woman comes storming through the door warning of pirates on the way. By the woman's demeanor it is not clear if the pirates are real or just her imagination. As the group prepares for the worse, it is believed the pirates may be shadows of the past wanting to do them harm.
The cast features: Elizabeth O'Brick, Nalita Murray, Vas Andreas, Jennifer Boarini and George O'Kreenke.
Streets of Ghost Town (1950)
The Durango Kid and sidekick look for gold.
No secret that Columbia Pictures recycles old footage. Cowboy idol Charles Starrett as Steve Woods and masked champion The Durango Kid teams again with his sidekick Smiley Burnette. The plot is thin, but enough to sustain a Saturday morning crowded theater. Looking for gold in a deserted town, Steve and Smiley along with the Dusty Creek sheriff(Stanley Andrews)discuss the case of Bill Donner(George Chesebro), who double crossed his partners for their share of gold. Doris Donner(Mary Ellen Kay)is available, but has no clues to where the gold was hidden. The only one that knows is the aged Bill Donner, sitting in jail with the loss of his eye sight. Flashbacks (previous footage of Durango Kid movies)extend and holds STREETS of GHOST TOWN together.
Other players include: Frank Fenton, Don Reynolds and Ozie Walters.
Ice Twisters (2009)
A weird weather emergency.
The SyFy channel presents another disaster film; this directed by Steven R. Monroe. In response to a drought, a couple of Federal Science Foundation employees create a curious device designed to seed clouds for rain. Problems arise producing of all things flash freezing tornadoes. Just so happens a former FSF employee turned controversial science fiction author is in town. Charlie Price(Mark Moses)steps right into a situation that might have been taken from one of his novels. Of course weather experts are befuddled by the whole situation. Can anyone keep this weird weather from becoming a disaster? At times the CGI looks convincing. Don't expect to find a character to really like. Acting is numbing.
In the cast: Camile Sullivan, Luisa Kennedy, Alex Zahara, Chelan Simmons and Kaj-Erik Eriksen.