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The Fog (2005)
If you think blood and gore is a good horror film don't see this cause it relies on more than that
I saw this film last night on DTV and because of the comments here I expected to turn it off after seeing just how "bad" it was. Instead it turned out to be an above average horror film with an interesting premise behind it. And it was better then the original fog, which isn't actually saying that much. I Thought there were many chilling scenes in this version especially in the last twenty minutes after the build up to the final visit from the 'Settlers'.
I can not imagine where all these bad comments are coming from except that maybe todays jaded horror film audiences expect a lot of senseless gore, cursing and nudity in a film to be considered "good". This film managed to deliver the chills with out using those cheap modern day crutches and a minimum of violence. I've been a horror film fan for over 35 years and I've seen or tried to see most of the so called "good" horror films. For instance the other night I saw the Italian made 'Demons' http://imdb.com/title/tt0089013. Many viewers call that a great horror film giving it over six stars at the IMDb. I couldn't watch more than 30 minutes of it cause it was so poorly done. What it called "horror" was simple gross scenes of blood and gore one after another. 'The Fog' is way better than junk like that.
No matter what people here are saying, both my wife and I enjoyed this film and recommend it to other true horror film fans. It's a throw back to the days when a horror film used atmosphere instead of gore to deliver the chills. And, Yes, the effects are good. Give this film a chance if you are mature enough, you won't be disappointed.
Phantom from Space (1953)
Slow to start but refreshingly different for the 50s (Warning Spoilers)
Hadn't seen this film since I was a kid in the early 60s. It was one of those films that stuck in my mind, I remembered the weird spacesuit with an invisible alien inside and something about climbing a ladder. It was a treat to see it again after all these years.
I love old sci-fi B films. You probably have to appreciate the time they were made in to truly enjoy them. The FX were primitive by todays standards, but got the job done nicely. What I liked most about this film was that it didn't have the typical "monster" from space story. Instead the alien was a misunderstood sympathetic character stranded on earth and needing help. He tried to communicate with humans but failed. I like to think that the more technologically advanced a race is, the less violent they might become or need to be. Therefore I find a film like this much more believable than a typical 50s "monster from space" film like 'The Thing from Another World' (1951). Don't get me wrong 'The Thing FAW' is an excellent film, but the advanced alien in it acted like a killer maniac. Hard to believe he could have built a ship able to travel millions of light years. This alien in 'The Phantom from Space' was also stranded here, but wanted to find a way to communicate and survive in our atmosphere, not kill. I found that refreshingly different for a 50s sci-fi film. In some ways this film reminded me of 'The Man From Planet X' maybe it was the role an unusual looking spacesuit played in making the alien seem more menacing then he actually was and adding a weird unearthly atmosphere to the film.
Some of the scenes seemed a bit inexplainable, like the nude alien climbing at the end before falling to his death. Why was he doing that? Seemed like a sort of 'King Kong Empire State Building' ending to an otherwise novel film idea. I half expected him to pound his chest and grab at imagined biplanes attacking him. A few things that also gave me a chuckle were the characters and some of the dialog. Oh and everyone seemed to be lighting up a cigarette ! - LOL One guy, looked like Clark Kent, another seemed to be doing a Rod Serling imitation. I expected to see his name at the end as "Irving Serling", Rods older brother or something ;^). Don't get me wrong, all this just added to my enjoyment of the film.
'The Phantom from Space' was a refreshingly different early 50s sci-fi film worth seeing IMO. If you have an open mind I recommend it.
This was typical sci-fi 50's fare to me, based on many movies we have watched. There are usually lots of night scenes and outdoor scenes where the creature is involved. Probably easier for special effects. And making it invisible helped with that aspect, too.
I would have liked to understand more about the Phantom, like how it ended up there. Naturally, the people didn't understand it and feared it, etc. - the usual paranoia in these types of films. Maybe I missed something, but I didn't think it was intentionally going around killing people the way the characters assumed. I can't recall the details of those deaths right now. And it conveyed that usual self-centeredness of Earthlings. The being died, huh?...oh well, whatever...let's call it a day and get back to our daily business. Oh, by the way, I rate it a 6 out of 10. The way they mentioned that his clothing had no weave and was impervious to acid, etc., was imaginative, I thought. I wasn't sure why the woman screamed when she saw his hand appear - maybe she was thinking that he looked so human-like, which she somehow found horrifying. At least she was relatively composed, especially when it joined her in the lab again,considering the penchant for depicting women as hysterical was so common.
We were laughing at how often everyone lit cigarettes...that one guy (the detective?) seemed to have a permanent one in his hand. And what about Clark Kent there? I couldn't help but think that about the guy with the glasses and hat. That one scientist, the German? one, was an arrogant SOB, by the way. It was fun all in all, even though it left out some background on the creature that I would have liked. I also hoped he would have been able to communicate.
Zontar: The Thing from Venus (1966)
Men are from Earth Zontar's are from Venus
'Zontar the Thing from Venus' is the kind of movie that's fun to watch even if it is predictable and outdated.
I recognized the familiar plot right away and later found out it it was a TV remake of 'It Conquered the World'. In this film John Agar played the role Peter Graves did in the earlier film. Poor John Agar, he went from being married to Shirley Temple and co-staring in classic John Ford Westerns ('Fort Apache', 'She Wore a Yellow Ribbon') to starring in low budget made for TV B-films like this later in his life.
I had to laugh when Dr. Taylor (the Hero-John Agar) realized his wife was possessed by Zontar's mind control implant. He wasted no time in killing his beloved wife. Presumeably for her own good !. Geesh, would it have hurt to tie her up and TRY at least a little to see if there was a way to cure her? Who knows, maybe if he destroyed Zontar she would have returned to her normal lovable self. Or maybe he was looking for an excuse to get rid of her? (boohahaha) - "But judge, I had to kill her, she was controlled by Zontar a thing from Venus" -LOL.
There were a lot of little reminders in here of a number of other sci-fi films including 'Invaders from Mars' (the neck implants that control even loved ones) and 'Invasion of the Body Snatchers' (humans replaced by aliens). But strangely enough it also reminded me of an old Dick VanDyke show episode. The one where Danny Thomas is an alien trying to conquer the earth and Laura Petrie (Dick's TV wife) is taken over and has a craving for walnuts :^D. I had to wonder if this TV movie and that episode came out about the same time.
There were some really silly lines of dialog to enjoy, like at the end where the narrator says how they learned that "Man is the greatest creature in the Universe"-gosh I hope not. Another funny scene was when the heroes car wouldn't run because all power to machines had been stopped, even a garden hose shouldn't work. Yet in the distance behind them you can see two cars driving by !
I also like the human traitor's outspoken wife and the way she charged into that cave to single-handedly try and destroy Zontar for making a fool out of her man. Evidently all housewives in the 60s kept pistols in the car glove compartment for just such an occasion. Sigourney Weaver has nothing on this lady, Go get um, Girl ! To bad she was ahead of her time and destined to fail by 60s sexist standards.
Oh and the FX when the laser weapon was used were funny too. It looked like a film negative or something flashed on the screen when they used it.
It wasn't a "good" film by any means, yet it was enjoyable at times.