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141 reviews in total 
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Return of the Walking Dead, 4 March 2013

Probably a film that while it influenced many media, that many people who saw said media probably never heard of.

It's very energetic and has likable characters - and, interestingly, the gang at one point threaten other people to get information, thus reminding us our protagonists/potential victims are, on a normal day, probably to be avoided themselves.

Individual zombies have personality too, notable because many villains in films have no personality - and unfortunate convention, but often it seems a movie's villain only exists as an obstacle for the hero.

Fortunately, there isn't much stupidity here as the threat is dangerous that the potential victims are pretty much fighting an uphill battle.

The music is pretty amazing.

1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Hotel on Coastside Cliff, 27 February 2013

I'm not sure what to rate this film.

Some horror films focus on gore and sometimes nudity; those are splatter flicks enjoyed more frequently by younger viewers (i.e. teens and maybe early twenties). Many older horror fans prefer films reliant on character development and atmosphere.

When I was younger, I found this boring. Now I find it incredibly stupid.

Beyond the opening part, most scenes have something wrong - often a complete disregard for common sense.

Apparently a guy who only runs amusement parks - unlike Disney or Universal, he has no other assets spoken of - can afford to throw away millions of dollars like its nothing. Note that the existence of another big amusement park would reduce the income taken by each company, making this less believable.

Ali Larter's character, on seeing the house locking itself down, preventing the cast from escaping, thinks its an attempt to scare them into leaving and forfeiting the money.

Rush's character provides the guests the means (loaded guns) and motives to murder each other. Forget the $1 million, or even $5 million. The lawsuits this surely opens himself to would ruin him.

Rush and Janssen play a couple who would be at home in a "Tales from the Crypt" episode. Kattan plays an unlikable guy who despite believing the house to be evil is willing to let people die for a few thousand dollars. These people play the only real characters.

Larter and the other girl might have been if they stared with their mouths closed but lips slightly apart, often while looking up, they would be paid for acting. Diggs has nothing to work with besides a couple of generic "movie black guy" lines toward the start. Whoever played Blackburn kinda just stood there mostly.

Essentially, there's a "Tales form the Crypt" plot line, which isn't that bad, and a haunted house plot line, which never makes sense. Even poor films like "Mirrors" and "The Unborn" had more logic to what their malevolent spirits were capable of - here, the darkness within the house was contained by cork board through most of the movie.

At one point, Diggs's character or a ghost resembling him is encountered by Larter's character. That ambiguous aspect is closest the movie comes to being scary. It's ruined because either the lighting or effects team resulted in the glowy eyes.

On the upside, it's very enthusiastic and feels the behind it were actually trying to make something entertaining - a feeling missing most big-budget horror films today.

Buried Awake, 20 February 2013

One interview video I watched once involved, after the interviews, the interviewer/presenter stated that the reason one person wasn't hired was because she would've made a good drinking buddy, but wasn't the material they needed.

"Buried Alive" is kinda like that. Little happens, but the characters are very entertaining, and mostly juvenile, but their antics stopped the movie from being boring.

Tobin Bell is essentially a poor man's Tony Todd, wondering around and providing some sense of menace.

There's some very gory murders, but much screen time is taken up watching the amusing potential victims, which alone should tell you whether you would enjoy watching this or not.

School of Horror (2007) (V)
Heavy-handed, 20 February 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Essentially, if you've seen the first few minutes, you've seen the movie! This prank (putting someone in a horror flick non-consentually) is pretty much the entire film.

Locked in a bar, with a monster outside, Rocky antagonises people until they venture outside. Not believable. Not remotely believable anyone would be more scared by Rocky than being eaten by a monster and even worse because if the audience can't buy it, why would the protagonist?

Oh, the twist kinda explains it - rather odd, really, that this incompetent movie still cheats less than The Uninvited for example.

A big cast brings nothing but boredom, with most kills being offscreen; you'll probably be fed up long before it finishing.

Mega Snake (2007) (TV)
1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Mobile snake, 14 February 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Oddly, this movie resembles "King Cobra" heavily - the killing of someone watching TV, the police and hillbillies forming additional teams to fight the creature besides the hero group, and even the hero group itself - medical guy, police officer and snake expert - is similar, missing only one character, as the character responsible for releasing the snake dies early in "Mega Snake".

Oh, and shed skin scenes. Discovering one might also happen in "Anaconda" but I don't remember - maybe the hunter in "Anaconda" was already carrying it.

Also resembles "Python" - a cop wants to arrest the protagonist for murdering the snake's victims and perhaps the protagonists' ending.

The great snake kitbash brings only the rampage at the fair that's almost new. That, and maybe disjointed attack scenes.

Oh and very poor characters - much worse written than the characters of "Python" and "King Cobra", and even the expendable victims of "Anaconda". Here, the protagonist's brother, for example, mocks the protagonist, blaming their father's death on him at an otherwise casual moment, while the police antagonist is nowhere near as likable as his counterpart from "Python".

0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Warriors of Terri... well alright, complete f-ing awful, 20 January 2013

"Warriors of Terra" is kinda like "Return to the House on Haunted Hill" - they are best described as "imitation movies".

It's pretty much clichés, nothing but clichés, without any purpose besides being clichés. Almost like the writers' thought train was "well, that's what happens in movies like this".

The main problem? It takes over one hour before an actual characters start dying, and there's not many redshirts either. Of the main groups, only three characters are "actual characters" meaning there's few people to converse with besides redshirts.

Nothing happens without the monster's presence, and when she's on screen you can't see much. She's not on screen much, although you can't see much anyway. It's dimly lit.

So remember only view this movie if... actually I can't think of a suitable excuse.

0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
From Before, 3 November 2012

From Beyond doesn't resemble a Lovecraft story, really. Monsters appear on screen too much, there's no atmosphere at all, there's too much action (quasi-action?) going on throughout the movie. Actually there's more emphasis on violence and maybe gore (don't really remember gore content) than trying to scare anyone.

It actually resembles Hellraiser more than any Lovecraft story I'm familiar with. It also predates Hellraiser, which means technically my title makes more sense than it's supposed to. Anyway, the themes include things like people who become aroused due to exposure to the other world or dimension or whatever its supposed to be.

And also some creature that tries to absorb people or something for sensual reasons... maybe? Its pretty weird, and I wouldn't be surprised if it turns out only the opening segment actually resembles the events of an actual Lovecraft story.

1 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Sometimes they come back and then leave after eating your food, 3 November 2012

The atmosphere is quite good during this film and emotional scenes involving the family were effective too. Its quite easy finding affection for these characters.

There is one problem though - in the process of increasing the story's length, the writers threw in scenes of students being murdered.

IIRC, dead students simply disappeared from the story, replaced by (un?)dead people. Here we're shown how they died and it almost seems like the writers thought the audience would be bored without action scenes.

They don't even match the film's tone and frankly, the crew proved capable of making me uncomfortable without anything happening on screen, meaning they were talented enough to not need random kills to interest the audience, making these scenes redundant.

1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Riding the Mallet, 28 October 2012

I don't really understand what I saw while watching this film. I'm not sure whether it was intended as a character study, incredibly surreal or whatever.

I'm not really sure whether the protagonist's paranoia was really supposed to be important, if so, the suspicions were justified when spooky things started happening, so... I repeat: I really don't understand.

The antagonistic spirit tries to force on the protagonist a sadistic decision. Perhaps if, instead of watching weird stuff happen to the protagonist, we had been given more emotional investment in him, this might have been more effective.

So the roller coaster shares its name with a metaphor for mortality. Right. But then what effect did literally riding the coaster have? Any? Very weird...

The method of presents the protagonist's thoughts to the audience was inventive, but besides that I don't know what I could recommend about it. But then its probably among those films where reading about it simply can't substitute the experience of watching it.

Night Drive (2010/I)
3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
Slight Drive, 27 October 2012

Firstly, I'm reminded of my favorite now gone horror review site and a "rule" they mentioned sometimes - a horror movie shouldn't run over ninety minutes unless it has something special for audience members.

Additionally, I'm reminded of the fifty movie pack I once bought, and some among those films share the habit of padding the film with a sequence that adds little to the movie. Night Drive's was worse - it rendered the central characters as unlikable.

Apparently drugged people experience motion like a 1st-person Nintendo 64 shooter - their walking viewpoint looking like the perspective of someone sliding across the ground instead of walking.

It's also kinda like the inverse of the haunted house film Dead Birds, where the crew mixed an atmospheric film with gory scenes, here its a character-driven splatter flick, which doesn't really work because the characters aren't that endearing. The elderly couple were probably the most charismatic characters and contributed little.

Ultimately the film falls flat because the pieces, well, technically fit together, just not very well.

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