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Frankenstein's Army (2013)
Imagination Gone Wild
This one scores primarily because someone was able to translate the stuff of nightmares into a film which should keep you riveted through the entire movie. Some of the images are truly beyond description, and must be seen to be appreciated. Of course it's a bit of a gore-fest at times, but some really ingenious "creations" steal the show. It's really something quite different and imaginative. Great claustrophobic settings. If you like those Nazi-type bunker movies, or another favorite of mine--- "Nazis At The Center Of The Earth", you will really appreciate the work that went into the production of this movie. "Shaky camera type movie" comments aside, and a bit of a slow start-up, do not detract from the overall effort that the cast and crew put into the film.
The 25th Reich (2012)
Someone Put A Lot Of Love Into This Movie, And It Shows
I found this the be a very enjoyable movie, especially if you liked a similar film that came out a while ago, "Nazis At The Center Of The Earth". Here the characters are more developed and the story concentrates principally on the five American soldiers sent on this mission. Combining minor elements of a WWII flick with some good claustrophobic sci-fi/horror, there is some really, really nice camera work here--- it's quite beautifully filmed. Even when you see the opening titles, you will know that a lot of love was put into the making of this picture, and it definitely shows. The special-effects are nicely done as well. Sure, a few plot holes here and there, and you definitely have to watch it more than once to appreciate all the nuances.
Prepare For True Entertainment
Butter up the popcorn, turn down the lights, and strap in for this roller-coaster gore-fest from Asylum Pictures. It starts off a bit slow, but once things get moving, prepare for a real treat. It's a comic book adventure come alive, complete with all the blood-splattering effects one would expect. And when I say strap in, I'm not kidding. MINOR SPOILER ONLY--- Only one slight spoiler I must include in this review, but I promise I will not give away anything crucial--- if you think you've seen it all, be patient through the first part of the movie--- just a few moments after the 55 minute mark, you're probably going to pee in your pants. Don't cheat yourself out of the thrill by fast-forwarding--- watch it all to enjoy the full effect. I was practically on the floor with the joy of the absurd. Kudos to Asylum--- this is real entertainment.
Haunted Forest (2007)
A Nitemare In The Daytime -- In This Case That's Good
You've got to be pretty good to make a movie that can be scary in a beautiful forest on a sunny day with blue skies, but that's pretty much what Haunted Forest accomplishes with an interesting story, decent visual effects and an exceptionally good musical score. The small cast is up to the task, and the three main characters are very believable. There is a minimal amount of gore, and the sense of isolation contributes to a film which becomes more and more claustrophobic as it progresses. While providing more suspense, tension and fantasy than actual horror-- (although some decent effects), this film is definitely worth a look.
The Abominable Snowman (1957)
Forgotten Little Gem Of A Movie
This is a somewhat forgotten little gem of a movie that one manages to come across and view every ten years of so, and the older one gets, the more one seems to appreciate it. If claustrophobia is your cup of tea, this movie delivers, along with enough doses of suspense to keep it moving at a pretty good pace. While some reviewers have claimed that the movie starts out a bit slow, I think that the beginning 20 or 30 minutes really lays out the necessary framework for what is to follow. If you enjoyed "The Trollenberg Terror" (aka "The Crawling Eye") with Forrest Tucker, this movie, which preceded it, should also please you. It's refreshing that this movie deals more with the psychological terror of isolation and the fear of the unknown and not with the 'flying saucers' which predominated sci-fi flicks of the 50's and the 'gore-fests' which were to follow in later years. This movie just goes to prove that with simple sets and a lot of imagination, wonderful things can happen on film.
Quatermass and the Pit (1967)
One Of The Very Best Sci-Fi Movies
Intelligent, well-done sci-fi classic, with great smatterings of horror and hints of witchcraft neatly tied into the storyline, make for some truly chilling scenes. Add wonderful performances by all involved, and you've got an extremely watchable and enjoyable movie. Most likely, you will have to watch it several times to pick up all the nuances in the relationship between characters. I originally saw this movie a year or two after it was released; I was very happy to rediscover it recently as it has always stuck in my mind. The youngsters will probably enjoy the "Star War" series more, but for the seasoned (and older) sci-fi aficionado, this is a real gem.
House of 1000 Corpses (2003)
Roller Coaster Ride--- Start To Finish
Having not been familiar with Rob Zombie's work, I was pleasantly surprised by this movie. Never a dull moment from beginning to end; this movie is a visual and aural treat. While some may be reminded of movies like Texas Chainsaw, there is enough new material here to keep most fans happy throughout. Great editing and fast paced, I especially liked the opening scenes at Captain Spaulding's. Another great scene, which will likely stay with you, begins with Slim Whitman's "I Remember You" playing in the background, and ends just before that great red sunset. A masterful job of editing, both here and throughout the movie, makes for a ghoulish treat.
Columbo: Publish or Perish (1974)
It's Really About Jack Cassidy
There are Columbo episodes, and there are Columbo episodes. For the most part, Peter Falk is consistent as the consummate Lt. Columbo, so what makes certain episodes shine are those who play in the role of his adversary. Robert Culp and Patrick McGoohan readily come to mind, as does Jack Cassidy, in his several (I believe three) appearances in various episodes, including this one. Cassidy never disappoints. He is cool and sly, often paying "left-handed" compliments to the good Lieutenant as the cat and mouse game ensues. Add to Cassidy's performance this great story and script, and you've got one of the classic episodes.
Robot Monster (1953)
A Great Rating--- And No, I'm Not On Drugs :-)
Having not seen Robot Monster for some 40-odd years, I was treated once again to a viewing (and a gift copy) several weeks ago. Of course the reviews are bad--- and almost everyone here on IMDb makes valid points about the all-too-numerous to mention negative points of the film. But two things struck me as I watched the film several times over the past couple of weeks. First, you really had to be a kid growing up in the 1950's to appreciate this film. I remember seeing Sputnik orbiting over the skies of New York City from my tenement roof when I was 7 years old. I remember the robot toys and spaceships that proliferated Macy*s toy department of the 1950's. The movie is a reflection of those more innocent days. Secondly, of course, most of the movie takes place in a young boy's dream, and what an adventure it is. Certainly the movie lacks continuity, the actors are little more than cardboard cutouts, the dialog is banal, and the "scientific" equipment which is used is little more than what appears to be a pile of surplus radios on a wooden table; yet this all contributes to the innocence of a young boy's dream. Taken in that context (dinosaur scenes and all), the movie has really captured the essence of the imagination of a young boy growing up the 1950's. If you were raised on "Star Wars", it is very difficult to appreciate a movie like Robot Monster.
Sherlock Holmes (1954)
Former Die-Hard Rathbone Fan Now Converted :-)
In a nutshell, I grew up with Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce, yet I do recall seeing the Ronald Howard episodes on TV in the late 50's. Only after I picked up a dollar DVD at Walmart featuring Ronald Howard did I realize what a totally charming performance he gave as the super-sleuth. H. Marion Crawford is equally charming as Dr. Watson, and the pair interact and play off each other in a manner much different than the Rathbone/Bruce pairing. Howard portrays Sherlock as a much more human and compassionate character and is a joy to watch. There are many nuances in his words and actions which one does not immediately observe on the first viewing which help enhance his portrayal. If you are a Sherlock fan, you must sample this delightful series. Kudos also for photography and editing, at least in the limited number of chapters I have been able to view thus far. As some have mentioned, the plot lines are somewhat shallow-- you will watch these less for the intrigue of the mystery and more for Howard's acting and the wonderful chemistry between Howard and Crawford.