Change Your Image
Upload An Image
Crop And Save
All Eyez on Me (2017)
I waited. We all waited. I wanted to like this. I really did. I rarely trust critic reviews. But I do check them out sometimes. One thing to learn from a movie before its theatrical release is, if they don't release early critic reviews within a week of its release, then its because they know they made a bad movie that critics will tear apart and don't want that influencing opening box office numbers. Well this movie had no reviews leading up to its Thursday night release. I saw the premiere and hoped that this wasn't going to be the case. Sadly it was. I came out of the movie so very disappointed and underwhelmed. I checked online to see if critic reviews where finally released....and low and behold, they were just as disappointed if not more than me. Like I said, I rarely trust critics, but this time they are really giving you a much needed warning when it comes to this over-hyped movie.
John Singleton was the original director before leaving the project because they wouldn't let him use his vision. He has since foreshadowed that they were gonna 'ruin' this movie. He was right. Sure the actor looks almost exactly like Tupac, but his acting was below average and his portrayal was very very off. Sure it has Tupacs music and some biased portrayals of his life, but this is stuff we already knew and didn't really execute the message in any way that made this movie a must see. There are a few scenes that seem nostalgic, but overall the movie has production value similar to a made for TV movie. This is unfortunate considering it was made on a budget of 45 million. The final act, that everyone really came to see was somewhat intense but the ending overall was almost disrespectful to Tupac rather than celebratory. This was an overall moneygrab disaster. Speaking of moneygrabbing, its obvious they chose Tupacs birthday as a release date to cash in knowing it would be a frontloaded weekend for the movie. Other than that, I am glad this movie will become a flop. When it comes to Tupacs legacy this movie should not be considered canon.
Its a shame, this is a story that the public wanted for years. But it wasn't the right movie at all. Save your money and skip this and listen to his music and watch documentaries of his life. I hope the upcoming Johnny Depp led movie based on real life detectives who worked on the case of Tupacs death is much better. This is simply not good.
Don't Knock Twice (2016)
Beware, you're in for a scare.
I had seen the cover of this movie as a related item on a few horror films and thought the plot was intriguing. Then I saw the Blu Ray was on sale at Walmart, which is actually interesting because it was accidentally stocked two months ahead of its release date. But I didn't complain as I took it home ready for what I was hoping would be a good spooky horror movie night. I wasn't disappointed. Despite the negative reviews, this ended up being one of the better horror treats from IFC Midnight and one of the best overall horror films in recent memory.
-Plot- Chloe is somewhat estranged from her ex-addict mother Jess for the beginning of her life. But now a more stable and wealthy Jess wants to reconnect with her daughter. But before happily ever after could happen, Chloe and a friend had gone to a local neighborhood house where urban legend says a vengeful witch resides. The legend states that if you knock on her door twice, she will come and take you to her world. Well, they knocked twice.
That is just the basic plot that sums up the first 5 minutes. Its a typical genre plot, but it is done surprisingly well. I am appalled by the negative scores. This is better than your average scary movie. The mythos is very creepy. The acting is above average for the genre and budget. The directing and cinematography contain some beautiful and terrifying imagery. The musical score is an instant horror classic. The sound design altogether is intense. The trailer for this surprisingly doesn't give away even half of the scares so even seeing it beforehand wont ruin any of it. But the trailer doesn't help its case either. There are plenty of jump scares that will truly get to you. Some might call them lazy, but their just nit picky. The entity of the witch is truly horrifying and will have you reaching for a blanket or light switch in all of its on screen moments. The actor playing the witch entity is the same that played the scary "mama" entity from Mama and the emaciated demon at the end of REC, so you know you're in for some scary imagery with this guy. The mythos of the movie does get a little over indulgent toward the end, but it still works well, despite a somewhat rushed ending and typical horror movie "bad logic" by some characters. Id compare some of the scary moments to "Lights Out" and even one early sighting of the witch to the Nun painting scene in "The Conjuring 2". I am surprised this didn't get a nationwide theatrical release as its production value is pretty nice looking compared to nationwide horror craps like Bye Bye Man. I attribute its absence from cinemas to its lack of a recognizable star. Which is unfortunate since I would have loved to experience this on the big screen. But that's what makes the horror genre so special. Even little gems like this that are ignored by mainstream media can end up being big cult classics and I believe this is a candidate. I am a horror junky and don't scare that easily anymore, but the entity of the witch really got to me. I really found myself inching toward the light switch and looking to see if something was behind me multiple times. One of the few films in a long time that I had trouble watching in the dark entirely during my first viewing. I would even go as far as to say this is a more accessible and fast paced take on A24s period horror "The Witch".
I think the negative reviews will surely get lost in praise as this finds its audience. I gave it a 10/10 to do my small part in helping its score improve, but my real grade would be maybe a 8.5/10. Its truly much better than the trailer suggest and definitely better than the negative reviews say. If you want a good fright night with a lover or friends, or even alone, then this is a perfect choice. If you liked "Lights Out" or "The Conjuring" style horror then beware you're in for a scare. Just make sure its dark and the volume is high. I'm adding this to my go to Halloween season movie playlist.
A Final Act That Will Haunt Your Nights
Its best to know as little about the plot as possible before seeing this. I will say that a few scenes toward the end remind me of that infamous scene from Insidious involving a shadowy figure standing in the corner of the room. One vague spoiler I will give is that it is a satanic horror movie. The entire movie has the vibe of a fever dream that slowly gets worse and worse until the very end. Here are a few things to know before seeing this movie. 1. It is a slow burner that builds on brooding atmosphere rather than constant jump scares 2. You have to pay close attention, so have little distractions or don't be too lazy to press rewind if you missed something. 3. The final 30 mins will haunt your nightmares so be sure to play it extra loud for extra effect. 4. You MUST watch it more than once. If any of those things aren't what you're looking for in a horror movie, then skip this so you don't end up trashing it afterwards. Otherwise, enjoy this future cult classic loud and in the dark. I personally think this is one of the best and scariest horror films in a long time.
*PS spoiler* I will even go as far as to call this a modern day spiritual successor to The Witch. Yes there is a Black Philip-esque entity in the mix.
Give This One Time And It'll Gain A Huge Horror Cult Following.
I really don't remember how I even came to know about this movie. I just know that once I saw the title of it online and watched the trailer that I had to watch it. The reviews at the time were mostly overly negative. But I still couldn't go on without having seen it. The premise was strange. I'm a sucker for strange horror films. So I bought it and after two viewings so far I can say with confidence that this movie is not nearly as bad as these negative reviews make it out to be.
First off, if you don't like weird or somewhat artsy movies, then you might not like this. This isn't a typical horror movie like the kind that gets released nationwide in theaters for teenagers to bring their lovers on dates with. Though I honestly wish it would've been released in theaters across the country as this is a visual treat. The cinematography is very well done for such a low budget movie. The musical score is a new horror theme classic for me. The acting was decent for the genre. The monsters are really creepy. There isn't really a coherent plot past the 15 minute mark, but this isn't supposed to be an award winner for best screenplay. It is a art horror film for most of the movie. Sure many will call it pretentious. But this is honestly one of the best surrealist horror films in a long time. Sure the plot might be a bit dumb, but the visuals and overall vibe of the movie have cult classic written all over it. Some of the special effects are silly. Some are really well done for the budget. Right now I'm sure most expected a simple good vs evil straight forward horror film. This one really is that grey area of movies. I'd compare its style to films such as "Paper House" and "Eraserhead". It does seem to partially be inspired by David Lynch. There are even moments that have a slight Silent Hill vibe. I'd say its the American surrealist take on the French Horror film "Inside". It's also pretty gory. It doesn't have an 'Unrated" rating for nothing. I didn't wanna give any plot spoilers as this movie is best viewed without any prior premise knowledge. I'd say if you haven't already, then don't see the trailer either. Just know it's a surreal and strange horror movie. If that doesn't sound like something you'd enjoy, then don't watch it. I can see this becoming a Halloween season cult hit as the years go by and more and more open minded horror fans view it and spread the word. I'm not saying everyone will absolutely love it, but I know for sure it doesn't deserve these horrible reviews it seems to be getting from the get go. I am adding this to my Halloween season go to list. Give this one time and it'll gain a huge cult following I promise that. A B-movie surreal horror masterwork of weirdness. And no I'm not on drugs, like some reviewers say you have to be on to enjoy this. Turn off the lights and partake.
Rare Fan Of The Original That Actually Liked It.
Unlike most others, I welcome horror movie remakes. I know that most end up being trash. But there are the few that end up being decent horror movies in their own merit. Yes, I'm a fan of the original 2008 French film Martyrs. I mean I really loved the intense raw terror of the original. But like most have said, it wasn't just about the terror. It had deep meaning. Which is why it has become one of the biggest horror cult classics of the past 20 years. So when I heard that they were making an American remake, I was honestly excited. The producers promised to keep the intensity of the original. This announcement was way back in 2010. So you can imagine I've been waiting nearly 6 years for this. Now the film is finally here. I will admit that the trailer for the film released online made it look very mediocre. And I knew that most other fans of the original would trash the film relentlessly regardless of its true value. It is hard to not compare this to the original. The critics reviews seem implausible too. I guess I'm the rare fan of the original that actually liked it.
*Basic Plot* A girl escapes from captivity from being tortured on a daily basis. The police return to find the torture site abandoned. The girl is sent to an orphanage where she befriends another orphan girl and sees visions of a monster. Years later as an adult she tracks down her captors and takes revenge, which sets off a chain of even more terrifying events for her and her best friend.
That really is just a typical summary of the plot to lure you in. It's for the most part a carbon copy of the originals story. Some scenes are shot for shot. There are a few tweaks that are "Americanized", but are still a bit intense compared to other horror remakes that seem dumbed down. I will admit that upon my first viewing I was disappointed in the handling of the ending. But the film still stuck with me long after. I read all these negative reviews prior and expected the holy grail of terrible remakes. I'm glad to find out most of those reviews are completely misguided. Yes, it pales in comparison to the original. But it is not nearly as bad as other fans have said it is. They seem to blindly hate it. I read one negative review that pointed out that the movie had country music, as if that played a big part in the soundtrack, when in reality it was literally just 10 seconds of the music near the beginning. Others say the acting is typical terrible American remake bad acting. Again, wrong. Sure it wasn't Oscar worthy acting. But it was all believable. Yes, the ending and captivity scenes are changed a lot. They are still intense, but less effective. BUT, still pretty good. I think the movie was still a pretty good horror film. There were scenes of brooding terror in the beginning. The musical score is very epic and emotional for a horror movie. The acting is pretty good. The production value is really good for a low budget remake. There are some visual shots during the daytime scenes that are eye candy. The message the original sent out is still present, just not delivered nearly as well. But it's still there! The ending will disappoint fans of the very memorable finale of the original, but in its own context it works decently. So all these insanely negative reviews should not be taken that seriously until you've seen the movie for yourself and will form your own positive or negative opinion. Believe it or not, even the original hasn't been seen by everyone. So most early reviews for this remake are from disgruntled fans of the original who went out to do nothing but trash this film. Of course if you saw the original and liked it, you will have a hard time not comparing the two. At first I was comparing them, but once I looked at this movie as a standalone horror film pretending the original didn't exist, I found it to be a pretty good horror experience. For the moment, I'd trust the opinion on this film of someone who hasn't seen the original more than the angry fans. Because their minds are fresh. They won't be overly nitpicky. Some will, but most might appreciate this for it's true value. Sure its not nearly the best horror movie ever made, but it's one of the best remakes. I'd bet anything that if this was released nationwide in theaters first, that it would get a warmer response from reviewers. I say if you haven't seen the original, you'll have a better time seeing this on your horror movie night. If you did see the original I strongly recommend you try your hardest not to compare the two and view this as if its truly a standalone film. I predict as time passes by this will find a small cult following. The reviews will slightly get better. Either way, turn up the volume, turn off the lights, and enjoy.
**Fun Fact** The writer of this remake is the same man who wrote the adapted screenplay for the award winning film The Revenant. Believe it or not.
Sinister 2 (2015)
Exactly What You'd Expect From A Horror Sequel. But So What?
My real score is closer to a 6.5/10 but of course I just rounded up. The reason I'm not attacking this movie negatively is because I love horror movies good and bad. Horror is a fun genre even if the movies aren't good. This isn't a good or bad horror film. It's borderline 'okay'. The original Sinister was a refreshing and creepy film that was disturbing for all the right reasons. It was clever with its atmosphere and its jump scares(the lawnmower scene still gives me chills). The soundtrack was haunting and somewhat beautiful. But lets not forget all those aforementioned comments are for the original film, not this one. Sure this movie had the same writers as the first, but maybe the spark wasn't fully reigniting for this sequel. This movie took all of the best elements of the original and dumbed them down slightly. The new director previously directed the very good indie horror film Citadel, which is better than this. I didn't hate this movie. But I far from loved it. I did have a somewhat good time in its world. The scares made me jump. But the atmosphere was just a bad copy of the first film. The snuff film sequences were trying too hard and showed too much. It would be disturbing to younger viewers probably but it didn't have that lasting effect of the subdued ideas of the first films snuff elements. The acting was okay. But I was rolling my eyes whenever the kids talked. Especially when the 'ghoul' kids tried to sound scary. Newsflash, kids are only scary in movies when they Don't talk in their dumb fake scary voices. The 'ghoul' kids in the original didn't talk and just their presence was chilling. And honestly the story wasn't that compelling. Sure the main actress was cute and blah blah but I honestly just didn't care about them aside from the returning deputy from the first movie. Baghuls appearances ranged from cleverly scary and eerie to stereotypical pop ups. Now these comments make it seem like I'm complaining and disliking the film. Not true. I'm just pointing out obvious flaws. Now the trailers for the movie really ruined many of its scare factors. It showed too much and when the movie actually played the scenes spoiled in the trailer weren't nearly as effective. There were a bunch of scares not in the trailer but it seemed like it was too much. A scare every 3 minutes seems scary but by the 30 minute mark I just got used to it and sat there as if I was watching a creepy drama, not a scarefest. Of course toward the finale I jumped more again since thats when they stack up the scares tenfold. Like I said, it has all of the elements of the first film, but just dumbed down. If you're a horror fan then you could appreciate this movie somewhat. If you're looking for a movie to kick off the Halloween season with a night of scares then this is also decent. If you hate the horror genre, don't even bother seeing it. I'd say try to see it within it's first week of release in theaters if you can because it's a fun movie to sit in a crowd with. But after that just wait till it's on DVD/Blu-Ray or Netflix. I can see this setting up another sequel but if things don't improve after this one then the franchise could die fast or go into 'direct to video' release.
The Rare Horror Movie That Gets Scarier With Repeated Viewing
I first saw this movie as a young boy in the late 90s. I didn't pay attention to the deep meaning and pure genius of it. In my child mind all I knew was that Candyman was the big bad Boogeyman and he'll kill you if you say his name in the mirror enough times. I didn't pay attention to the story within at all. So as I grew up I began to develop a special fondness for Horror movies. In particular, Good Horror movies. It is still my favorite genre. So of course I stumbled across the name Clive Barker. His original Hellraiser movie, which was based on his own novel was for a time my favorite of his. The franchise of sequels that followed were either hit or mega miss. But I then began looking for any Clive Barker related movies. His other two directed movie "Nightbreed" and "Lord Of Illusions" were good but still paled in comparison to the icon of Hellraiser. "Midnight Meat Train" was good but again it couldn't hold a candle to the big H. Then came Candyman. I remembered my childhood thoughts of the film and just kinda skipped on it thinking it was just too gimicky. But for some reason I couldn't resist the urge to rediscover the movie knowing I hadn't seen it since I was a naive kid. So I read reviews everywhere online for the movie. Nearly everyone was praising it. Some calling it the best horror movie of the 90s. The itch needed to be scratched so I went out and purchased the Candyman DVD. It was a good horror movie night that night.
The movie is set in the 90s but feels so timeless. Well except for the lack of cell phones everywhere. Needless to say the situations in the film are so disturbing and surreal yet very realistic believe it or not. The setting for some parts of the movie in Cabrini Green, which was one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in the US back in the day, was so eerie. Unlike many horror throwaways the characters are likable and seeing them die is tragic and disturbing. Virginia Madsen is a beautiful and lovable woman. Her portrayal of the main character was so helpless. This also is one of the few horror movies where the characters don't make constant stupid decisions throughout just for the sake of keeping the horror going. You know what I mean, like when a character hears a strange noise and walks through a house calling out to the possible death threat and sometimes with no lights on. Those stupid decisions are non-existent here. This movie takes place in realistic scenarios. Sure you might be thinking 'how could a ghost coming out of a mirror to kill you be realistic?'. Well here's a fun part. Though some may disagree, I think the Candyman never really entered the physical realm in the movie. (Spoiler) From the moment the Candyman makes his first on screen appearance on is when the main character has entered her psychological doom. No one but Helen (Madsen) really sees the Candyman throughout the film. It's a scary possibility to think of the movie that way. (End Spoiler/theory) Speaking of Candyman himself, Tony Todd gives an iconic portrayal of one of the all time horror villains. His voice sounds like evil incarnate. It fills the room even if you watch the movie at a low volume. Some of his scenes are so trippy that even the viewer wonders if what they saw really happened. It's very dreamlike and of course very nightmarishly surreal. The musical score is one of the greatest of any genre. I'd even say the main theme is better than that of horror mainstays like Halloween and The Exorcist. The first half of the movie does a great job of building up tension without ever getting boring. The second half is just relentless in it's terror. Don't think this is a mindless madman gone wild horror movie. This is a movie that will haunt you if you really pay attention and preferably watch it loud in the dark and maybe with a group.
So this is not only my favorite Clive Barker related movie, but probably my new favorite Horror movie. The night I bought the DVD as an adult I had hallucinations of Candyman as I tried to sleep. That NEVER happens to me. It was disturbing. But did it stop me from watching it again? No. This movie has such great replay value and it seriously gets scarier and more haunting with each viewing even though you know what's going to happen.
Fantastic Four (2015)
One of the worst movies of any genre in the past 100 years.
I knew this movie was going to bomb from the moment I saw the teasers and all of the trailers. It just had this B movie vibe. Not the 'so bad its good' vibe either. But even so I still had this small glimmer of hope that it would be good. I went to see it. I was right. It was horrible. I think this is the last you'll see of the Fantastic Four in at least 20 years. The cinematography was amateurish throughout. This movie looked like a college project movie in the 90s that was an exercise in practicing new CGI elements. But don't think that I'm saying the CGI was good. It wasn't. Everything looked just awkward and bland. The Thing was entirely CGI in a bad way. I'm all for giving new actors chances to shine. But every single one of these actors and actresses not only bored me and the audience of the packed theater I was in, but truth be told, they all looked like forgettable faces. It was awkward throughout. The script seemed mixed up. The characters had no chemistry with each other and no appeal for the viewers. Also, the horrible casting of the 'token black guy' as the Human Torch was a huge step in the wrong direction. The actor playing him was just boring and his attempts at trying to seem like a tough guy made me roll my eyes. Again, the visuals were just ehhhh. I took my phone out halfway through the movie and began surfing the internet, something I absolutely loath to see people do during movies and have never done myself, until this movie. But I saw that at least 10 other people were doing similar things out of boredom from the movie. At least 20 people, including families with young kids walked out of the movie. I could have walked out but the fact that I paid to see the movie made me stay. It was the feeling of being in detention back in grade school. Its such a shame since the Fantastic Four is one of the more beloved comic book super heroes yet they've found it impossible to make a good movie adaptation of them. Maybe one day. This is one of the few movies were I agree 100% with the critics. This movie is bad. I'm just warning you. Its not good. At all. Go see Ant Man or Mission Impossible 5 instead.
Future Cult Classic
I was excited for this movie. I knew the critics were going to go hard on it. I knew that most of the so called professional critics weren't even going to see the movie and would trash it based solely on Adam Sandler and Kevin James. I don't blindly hate Adam Sandler like most of the drones nowadays. Sure he had horrible movies in the past few years like Jack and Jill, the Grown Ups movies, and Thats My Boy. But he's had more hit than miss. He's even proved he can be a dramatic actor in his masterful performance in Punch Drunk Love, which I wish he would try again. So seeing the trailers for this really intrigued me. I knew not to expect much substance. I just knew it was going to be a fun comedy action movie. When the movie was finally in theaters my predictions of the unwarranted hateful reviews were spot on. But did that stop me from going to see it? Heck no. I've learned long ago not to trust movie critics most of the time. Sometimes their right. This isn't one of those times.
*Plot* I'm sure you already know the basics. The US sends a message containing cultural phenomena such as video games, movies and music out into space in the 80s. Years later the aliens come back having taken the message as an act of war and are attacking the Earth in various countries in the form of classic video games. It's up to the presidents life long best friend, a video game arcade champion from childhood and current home theater installer adult to save the day with help from other video game virtuosos. What unfolds is a series of battles in the form of 'stages' in video games to help save the earth from these aliens.
Yes, it's ludicrous. Yes, Adam Sandler is a hero in this movie. Yes, Kevin James is the president. So what? This movie was very funny. I don't know what the critics were talking about this time especially. The jokes weren't flat. I haven't laughed this much at an Adam Sandler movie in years. It was also good. Sure there were some moments that made me roll my eyes, like the whole side plot of romance. Also, Adam Sandler had a few funny lines, but he's not even the real star of this movie. The real stars are the supporting cast and the video game representations which were spot on. Josh Gad was so funny it hurt. Peter Dinklage was painfully hilarious. And as far as Kevin James being president goes, he did a good job at being funny but restrained at the same time. I'm sure most people were assuming he would be the wacky character of Paul Blart in a presidents suit. Wrong. Even the kids who played the young versions of the characters in the beginning did a great job. The theater I was in was full of laughter throughout at least 90% of the movie. Oh and the soundtrack was superb in catching the style of the 80s. The action scenes were intense. The visual effects used to created the classic video game characters were done so perfectly. But again there were action parts that were so over the top that they were lame such as Adam Sandlers character driving in reverse off of a parking garage and shooting the enemy dead before safely landing on a lower buildings roof. But then I remembered 'Why shouldn't I believe that when I'm believing that these video game characters are out and about?'. Exactly, some critics who actually saw the movie took the unbelievable plot too seriously. The low score on many sites surely affected its Box Office. But mark my words, the reviews and comments from people who actually saw the movie and loved it, are in the majority and they will help this movie rebound into the cult classic it's destined to be. Here's an example. When the movie first came out, its score on this website was a meager 4.4/10. Less than two weeks, and the day I'm typing this review the score has risen to 5.5/10. Though not a high score, this does show that the reviews are quickly getting more positive. As the negative scalding reviews are starting to get lost in the crowd of love for this movie. I predict in the future it will reach the mid to high 6/10 territory. Don't let the Sandler haters crowd your judgement. This is meant to be seen on the big screen. Don't take it too seriously. Go take your kids or see it with friends. Especially if you were a kid during the 80s or know other people who were around during that time. This will be a huge blast of fun nostalgia for you and others if so. But even if you don't recognize all the throwbacks in this movie, you will still have a good time! This was probably the best Adam Sandler comedy since Anger Management. But I dare say it's his best and most fun movie altogether. I would love to see a sequel!
Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 (2015)
Not the movie critics say it is. Better than Jack and Jill at least!
First off, my real rating is close to a 6 out of 10, but I saw the horrible reviews from critics and the sadly low score on IMDb and put a 10 out of 10 to hopefully help bring it up. It really doesn't deserve this backlash. I'm not a paid reviewer who wants to give this film false advertisement to go see it. I've seen the movie with the family and I can assure you it is fun. Very fun. It does have a few annoying moments, but they are just moments that pass by quickly before more fun aspects take place. This isn't an amazing movie. It's not an Oscar darling feature. But it never strives to be. Its clear from the previews and the fact that this is a sequel to PAUL BLART that this is just meant to make you laugh or at least smile and shake your head in a positive way. Its wacky, its stupid, its funny! Its also best for kids. I promise you if you take your kids to see this they will leave happy. But its also great for all ages. Just a film to sit back and watch goofy Blart and his goofy antics. People are calling this the worst movie ever. Many are saying it's this years Jack and Jill. It has a 0% rating on a certain movie website that rhymes with Totten Romatoes, and it's just sickening. I don't go by critics reviews most of the time nowadays mostly because of movies like this that get this treatment. People who gave this movie a scathing review saw the movie to hate it. They walked into the theater already hating it just to hate it. I'm betting many of them didn't even see the movie. If you want a good family film to see with a crowd and have a good time, then ignore the critics and go see this. You wont regret it. If you are one of those people who just has a dumbfounded hate for Kevin James or this kind of humor then don't even bother to see it. It's that simple. You'll just hate it and make people who could have loved it not even see it.