Change Your Image
Upload An Image
Crop And Save
The Crazies (2010)
The Romero Classic Gets a Worthy Remake.
When a government airplane carrying a biological weapon crashes into a small Iowa town, the virus infects many of the towns population causing them to become psychotic. Now a small handful of uninfected must work to survive and make it out of the town before they become the next victims.
The Crazies is a remake of the 1973 George Romero classic "The Crazies." Luckily, George Romero was producer on this film as well and it shows. Fans of the original will find much to enjoy in this one as well. The basic plot is the same, but also different enough that it is worth seeing. The acting is very well done. The pace and feel of the film is just perfect for setting up a tense and thrilling ride. Also, the film is more about creating tense and frightening scenes without shoving tons of gore in your face. For fans of horror this is definitely worth a watch.
*** out of ****
The Black Dahlia (2006)
What Could Have Been an Interesting Film Noir ends up Nothing but a Mess
This film is a fictional account of the murder of Elizabeth Short in 1947. Two detectives are drawn into the gritty murder of Elizabeth Short an aspiring actress and party girl who is found slaughtered and cut in half in L.A. While one cop wants to drop the case, his partner starts a downward spiral into obsession with finding the murderer.
What could have been a gritty film noir quickly becomes a dull mess. This film has less to do with the Black Dahlia murder and more to do with the two detectives and their own sub-plots. Throughout the movie I kept wondering when they were going to get to the point instead of dwelling on unnecessary sub-plots and when the film finally raps up I found the film completely unsatisfying.
Unfortunately, the acting was a mixed bag. Aaron Eckhart and Mia Kirshner were both fine in their roles, but Josh Hartnett was such a dull and robotic lead. Scarlett Johansson was also fairly dull and Fiona Shaw was a joke.
The directing was also a bit of a mixed bag. There are some scenes that were very well shot, but other scenes, like a dinner scene between Josh Hartnett and Hilary Swank's family are so clumsy and goofy that you can't understand why it wasn't re-shot.
I wanted to like this, I think Brian De Palma does have talent, but ultimately, this was not a good movie. To much meandering with boring sub-plots instead of actually dealing with the Black Dahlia murder case will have most people snoozing before the end credits roll.
* out of ****
House II: The Second Story (1987)
A House for the Kids
Jesse and his girlfriend move into an old mansion that his parent died in 25 years ago. He starts to learn about his past through old books in the basement and learns of his great grandfather who was an adventure and found a crystal skull. Jesse decides that he is going to find the crystal skull with the help of his friend Charles, but he soon finds more than he bargained for.
House was a quirky horror comedy in the vain of Evil Dead, House 2 drops all the horror and bumps up the comedy and becomes more of a goofy kids movie in the vain of The Goonies. The monsters in this one are for the most part non-threatening cute puppets and such and the comedy is mostly bizarre (why does Charles have an uzi?, Why is the electrician an adventurer?) Nothing really makes sense, but the random nature makes it funny.
This film is also more of an adventure film in which the house opens up portals into other time periods which gives the film an overall episodic feel and keeps things a bit fresh and interesting.
The acting isn't very good, but in a film like this it doesn't need to be. The special effects are fairly good and I loved the cute monster puppets and stop motion effects.
House 2 is a stupid movie, I can't see fans of the first movie liking the second one to well. It has almost nothing in common with the first one, there are no returning characters and even the house is different. But I still kind of liked it, maybe even better than the first. This one is more for kids than adults, but if you like bizarre random humor, you might get a kick out of this.
** out of ****
A Quirky Horror Comedy
Novalist Roger Cobb is in a slump. His son has disappeared, his wife has left him and he just can't seem to get a new book out. To top it all off his aunt has just committed suicide. Roger decides a change of pace is possibly what he needs and decides to move into his aunt's old mansion, but if his annoying neighbors don't get to him, them maybe something else in the house will.
House is a horror comedy that seems just quirky enough to work. The story itself is nothing new, it is a bit dull and predictable. It seems like a mish-mash of ideas from the likes of poltergeist, the shining, and evil dead, but some of the quirky characters keep it together.
The acting isn't really all that good for the most part, but I got a kick out of George Wendt as the nosy, but good natured neighbor. Richard Moll was quite fun too, but he isn't in the film much. I did enjoy the rather cartoony look of the monsters in the film.
Overall, the film is neither all that good or bad it is just OK. Worth a watch for fans of 80's horror movies, but others might want to skip.
** out of ****
Punisher: War Zone (2008)
The First True Punisher Film is not for People with Weak Stomachs, but Extreme Action Lovers Will have a Hell of a Good Time!
The Punisher has been portrayed twice on film so far. First in the 80's flick with Dolph Lundgren and more recently in the 2004 flick with Thomas Jane. While both were OK in parts the movies as a whole just weren't that good. Being a huge fan of the comic series I have always felt that they had never pushed the violence far enough for a Punisher film. He was always to restrained. So how did the third attempt at a Punisher film work? Lets see...
Punisher: War Zone starts a few years after the death of Frank Castle's family. Since than he has been killing mobsters at a steady rate and the police see him more as a help than a hindrance..although they won't admit it. When the Punisher fails to kill an up and coming mobster named Billy Russoti, Billy decides to start a war against the Punisher and he won't quit until the Punisher is dead.
While the story may seem fairly basic it serves its purpose perfectly. This is the ultimate Punisher movie. There are more bullets and blood in this movie the most action movies and the action never lets up.
Acting is well done by everyone. While I like Thomas Jane as an actor I think Ray Stevenson is a better Punisher. Dominic West is good as Jigsaw, but I felt he might have hammed it up a bit in a few scenes.
Lexi Alexander has made the quintessential Punisher film that dares to show you the gritty world of the Punisher without shying away from all the gore. I can only hope that a sequel will be on the way soon.
Fans of the Punisher comics and extreme action lovers will eat this up, but know that this is not a movie for kids or people who can't take a ton of gore.
*** out of ****
Tomie Will Not Die!
Tomie is a teenager who has the power to corrupt any man with her looks, she has complete control over any man and makes total use of her control. When she is done, she tosses them aside and moves onto another man. The heartbroken man will generally kill her, but that is exactly what she wants. Tomie is based on a manga series from the late 80's and what sounds like a great idea on paper just doesn't really translate well onto the big screen.
This first film in the successful Tomie franchise is rather weak and confusing. First off, it seems like the director automatically assumes you are familiar with the characters and the manga and doesn't really explain what is going on until maybe thirty minutes in. It also doesn't help that many of the scenes don't particularly flow well or make much sense adding to an even more confusing experience.
The acting is fine, but Miho Kanno who plays Tomie never really comes off as seductive and instead just seems creepy all the time. No real thrills or suspense either unfortunately. The film does win points on it's creepy soundtrack though.
* & 1/2 out of ****
The Grissom Gang (1971)
One of the Dullest Gangster Movies I Have Ever Seen!
The Grissom Gang is the story of a criminal hillbilly family during the 1920's that kidnap the daughter of a millionaire and hold her for ransom. Unfortunately, what follows is one of the dullest gangster movies I have ever seen. It seems that Robert Aldrich tried to add some humor to the story which is also unfunny. None of the actors stand out as particularly good with the exception of Aldrich favorite Wesley Addy who I thought was quite good. The story is uninteresting and there is next to no action until the end at which point I was mostly just waiting to see the credits and be done. Aldrich is a fine director, but this is just not one worth watching. * out of ****
Sky High (2003)
A Must See!
Kanzaki is a detective searching for a serial killer who is killing young women and keeping their hearts. On his wedding day his wife becomes the killer's next victim sending Kanzaki on a quest for revenge to murder the person who killed his wife. But there is so much more! What starts as a grizzly murder mystery/revenge film opens up to become a truly epic masterpiece. Part love story/supernatural ghost story/action movie. Sky High has it all. Superb cast and terrific acting. Cinematography is amazing, and I love the special effects. Sets are great and the soundtrack really gets you into the action scenes. My only complaint is that the movie does get a little long near the end. If you are looking for something different see this movie. You won't regret it. *** out of ****
Memorial Valley Massacre (1989)
Extremely Dull Horror Movie
Memorial Valley Campground is opening for business, even though they are having a rough start and not quite ready to open. The roads aren't quite ready and no running water are a few of the problems, but the biggest problem is a maniac caveman running around the campground killing off the campers. Extremely dull horror fare is neither gory nor horrifying. Memorial Valley Massacre takes forever to get started and by the time it does you don't even care. The acting is fairly terrible with the caveman being the worst. Who came up with this idea? Even if you are a fan of 80's serial killer movies this is one that is just not worth the bother. BOMB! Zero out of ****
Con la rabbia agli occhi (1976)
Low-Budget Italian Revenge Flick That is Actually Pretty Decent
Peter Marciani's brother was killed by the mafia. Now Marciani is traveling to Italy to kill his brother's murderer and he is going to take out his mob one man at a time. Low-budget revenge flick similar to The Punisher movies as far as plot. Slow paced, but peppered with some nice shoot-outs and car chases. I thought it was a fun little movie. Yul Brenner playing Marciani really makes the movie. Martin Balsam was good as the police inspector. The only problem was that their wasn't much characterization on the female lead Anny. Worth a look at if you like movies like The Punisher, other people might want to stay away. ** out of ****