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Rambo: A War Film 20 Years Later
No other movie in the Rambo Series displays the intensity and cruelty of war as does Stallone's new adventure. This new Rambo film is violent, crude, dark and serious. Stallone captured the essence of war in this epic film; its fatalities and all elements that surround it.
Also, he got into the development of his character. Many years have passed and we see an older, angrier, bitter and disappointed Rambo who is haunted by the demons of the past and the traumas of war. In the end, leading Rambo to find closure and to heal coming back home.
The action in the film is constant and Rambo's courage and heroism is present through the whole film. The scenery is amazing and the camera work is awesome in the battle scenes. There are more characters helping Rambo this time, so it gives more credibility to the story being that he is older and does not have the stamina and muscles he had more than 20 years ago.
This is a must see film for all of us who grew up in the 80's and Rambo or Rocky were our childhood heroes . or just for anyone that wants to watch a great action film.
El orfanato (2007)
A Brilliant and Stylish Horror Film
In a few short and simple words, El Orfanato is a disturbing, frightening and very eerie film... It's a simple movie with strong character development, excellent acting, a very creepy atmosphere and a very well executed story with an intelligent script. All the actors in the film give outstanding performances and every scene is done magnificently.
There are many horror films in the world being made nowadays, not sure how many, but it must be a number somewhere in the thousands per year, but a very high percentage of those films are garbage. Bad scripts, bad acting, bad ideas, movies stealing from other movies and the worst Japanese remakes.
Where any other movie fails, El Orfanato emerges victoriously. I have stated this before in some of my other reviews: "Horror is a genre that needs to be handled with care" because If it is overdone, then it falls into ridicule. If it is too light, then it is not scary. If it is too gory then, it is too graphic and most critics kill it, and this list goes on and on
El Orfanato does none of the above; it stays loyal to the genre and does it with elegance and style. There are no monsters, no creatures, no gore, no torture, and no grotesque scenes. No need for any of these, with such a brilliant script, musical score and direction. The film grabs the audience from start to finish.
Highly recommended. A+
Rob Zombie is the Master of the Macabre
It is true what many reviewers on IMDb have posted about the new Halloween film: plot holes, exaggerated language, a confusing 70s, 80s or 90s time line, and so many other negative comments. Despite all these negative vibe, the new Halloween by Rob Zombie still delivers and it sets a standard in modern horror today.
The first half of the film focuses on the early years of Michael Myers and in my opinion, this is the best part of the film. As Italian screenwriter Bernardino Zapponi (a friend of Dario Argento) once said: "Children are always scary in horror films." This works because focusing on Myers' early years and watching his first murder and his metamorphosis into pure evil and full insanity was done masterfully. It adds very much to the story and it causes quite an impact on the audience. The mother and son relationship makes it even more dramatic.
Rob Zombie knows how to create very thick atmospheres combining silence, slow motion, a mixture of different noises and colors, flashbacks, close-ups, camera movement... He did it in House of 1000 and he's done it in Halloween.
After watching this film, all I could think is that Rob Zombie is way up there with the maestros of terror. He's different than the Italian masters Argento or Fulci... or than American horror icons such as Craven or Romero. But let's admit that Zombie has developed his own style, his own trademark in all of his films. It might be too explicit, crude or exaggerated for many, but still... it is his style and after all, it is horror, the beautiful genre where anything is possible.
Rob Zombie is one of the few visionaries that still have respect for the genre... for that, I applaud his ideas and creativity and put him up there with the best directors in horror today.
30 Days of Night (2007)
30 Days of Night: A Film Review
30 Days of Night is a film that delivers a few scary moments, creepy looking predator-vampires and nothing else more. There is no story or no answers as to Who are the vampires? Where do they come from? What do they want? besides the obvious... Who is the creepy looking man in the opening scene of the movie who later gets thrown in jail?
These and much more questions are left unexplained through the movie. Perhaps one needs to read the comics first to understand the film? My opinion is that they could have done so much better, being that idea of filming in Alaska in darkness is great... the filmmakers could have done more character development and a decent story.
Gore, creepiness and violence were up to level for today's horror standards; as well as make up and costumes... Like I said the setting and idea were great, but if a story would have been developed, this film could have become a vampire favorite, not just one of many attempts to make modern horror movies.
Simply Brilliant Mel Gibson should now try doing a horror film
Apocalypto is one of those films that captures the audience since the very first minutes of the film. It is a great story taken to the screen from the mind of a revolutionary director. Mel Gibson captured the essence of the Maya Civilization, the language, the costumes
it gave a different perspective of what the Mayas were and that there were others in the jungle that did not follow or believe the Maya beliefs. Personally, I found this gratifying and open minded since I never really thought about it. As passionate as I am about ancient civilizations, the focus always is in their religion and culture and not so much in their surroundings.
Anyhow, everything in Apocalypto was done masterfully. It is clear that the people involved in this film spent lots of time researching the Mayas to make this epic film. As it is also clear that Gibson, is not afraid to show blood and violence in his movies. We have seen it in Braveheart and The Passion of the Christ and now Apocalypto. What's next?
I think he should definitely make a horror film since he clearly has a taste for showing blood and difficult situations in his films and succeeds at it... transmitting his vision no matter what.
Hot Fuzz (2007)
Hot Fuzz: A film review
Hot Fuzz explores the sides of dark comedies like no other film. It is a combination of wit, action, horror, violence and blood. It is a simple movie, but executed in a way that no other has been done. It captures the essence of the English country side and the performances by Simon Pegg and Nick Frost are excellent, as usual.
Many compare this to Shaun of the Dead and say that this is even a better film, but I disagree. I think both are excellent films and cannot be compared because they are different genres. Shaun combines comedy with horror, but horror is its main genre. Fuzz combines comedy with action and violence, but action is its main genre. Anyways, both films are awesome.
The action scenes in Hof Fuzz are very enjoyable to watch. The script is smart and witty. The little tones of horror are great and unexpected! Let's hope that these trio continues to make awesome films such as the Shaun "odyssey" and Hot Fuzz.
1408 lacks horror, suspense, creepiness... and by no means should be compared to The Shining!!!
There are way too many positive comments about this movie. Hundreds of users praise this movie as being true horror and there are some that have the indecency to compare it to Kubrick's masterpiece The Shining. This is all wrong... 1408 is just another Stephen King story, there is nothing special about it... no horror, no suspense, not one single moment of creepiness. Cusak gives an OK performance, but the director does not manage to create an unsettling atmosphere for the story. 1408 is not a horror movie and the PG-13 rating does not help at all.
It is difficult to create an effective horror story nowadays, especially to a generation that either gets scared on teen slasher films or the opposite, grizzly violence and torture films. 1408 does none of the above, but tries to explore supernatural phenomena failing undoubtedly. It takes more than computer generated ghostly images and a sense of madness to develop an effective horror film. For example, Dario Argento, captured the essence of the supernatural in his films Suspirira and Inferno. But one does not have to go back to the 70s or 80s to find good horror movies... some recent great horror: House of 1000 Corpses, Dog Soldiers, Cabin Fever, Hostel, May, 28 Days Later.
1408 delivers nothing special for the passionate horror connoisseur.
Dark Ride (2006)
This is an INSULT to the horror genre
Many people might be under the concept that to make a good horror film there has to be lots of killing, lots of gore and torture. This is not true and a perfect example is Dark Ride.
Dark Ride has the gore, the violence and killings, but this does not make it a good horror film. It seems that they tried to give it a campy look "a la Texas Chainsaw" putting a group of young kids driving in an old Van, then picking up a hitchhiker... only to be slaughtered as the movie goes into its "dark ride".
The plot lacks originality, the acting is the worst I have seen, the characters have no personality or screen presence whatsoever. There is no connection between the characters and the audience. The dialogue is pathetic and in occasions falls in the ridicule.
I was truly disappointed about this movie as it only tries to copy other horror gems and lacks all the elements to make it a worthy or viewable film.
Vacancy: A typical Hollywood film
There are only two positive points that can be rescued from this movie. One,the beauty of Kate Beckinsale. Two, the great performance by Frank Whaley. Beside this, everything else in the movie is not worth the time.
The story is not that bad, but it could have been executed differently to make it a truly horrifying movie... I suppose it is an OK movie for those who like commercial movies or the typical Hollywood Horror, but not for the real Horror buff out there.
The dialogue between Kate Beckinsale and Luke Wilson is absurd... too simple and Wilson's performance is very weak. The killings are simple and leave much to the imagination. The movie itself is predictable and the ending is the WORST there can be...
I did not like that the opening and ending credits had a score that somewhat resemble the music from Psycho... as if somehow this was similar to the late 60s masterpiece. There will never be another Norman Bates... and the Pinewood Motel will never resemble Bates Motel.
El laberinto del fauno (2006)
El Laberinto del Fauno is a true tale of fantasy and imagery. It mixes the fantasy world of a small girl and the cruelty of the war in a very subtle manner. This film captures all the magical elements in a fairy tale and it is presented in an exquisite and elegant manner by Guillermo del Toro, which I might add is the greatest Mexican filmmaker today.
I do not recall any other Mexican films that deal with the fantasy/horror genre like this one does. As a matter of fact, most Mexican films are always trying to be controversial by using sexual scenes and bad language and also by showing us the corruption, politics and poverty of Mexico.
El Laberinto del Fauno does none of the above. This film is just pure pleasure to the eyesight and the rest of the senses. It is a magical tale for adults and it is a delight to see the imagination and originality of the best Mexican filmmaker.
La noche de los mil gatos (1972)
This film goes nowhere. There is no blood, no nudity, no weirdness... absolutely nothing that describes this as a 70s horror film. There is hardly any dialogue and great part of the film are just shots of a helicopter and bad seventys instrumental music. The few girls in the film are beautiful, but considering that it was a horror film and it was the 70s, there should have been more skin shown, at least to justify for the poor story line and bad acting.
This film is nowhere close to any other 70s horror gems. Another factor that disappointed me was that the movie is all spoken in English. Since the title is La Noche de los Mil Gatos, I thought it was going to be spoken in Spanish, so that took away my interest since the beginning.
I do not recommend to serious horror film buffs.
Haute tension (2003)
Terror, Gore & Madness
I don't have to elaborate on explaining the bad quality in content and script writing on most "horror movies" nowadays, so I will skip that part and talk about a small film called High Tension.
This is a film that truly defines the horror genre. This French director really captured the essence and atmosphere of what a Horror film should be all about. High Tension is really full of adrenaline and the performances by the 3 main characters are splendid. Every single detail is well done, the music, the sounds, the makeup, the gore, the madness...
High Tension is a great Horror Film. One that stands and will stand above many Horror attempts. As a horror film buff, I can definitely appreciate a good film and admire someone that still believes and has respect for the beautiful genre.
Van Helsing (2004)
Boring and Disappointing
After viewing the trailer some months ago I thought this was going to be a good film. I am completely aware of all the trash that the big studios produce nowadays... somehow I thought this would be different, but instead it turned into a boring film with obnoxious one-liners and too much CGI.
Now, the actor that played Dracula just didn't fit. Dracula is suppose to be a dark-powerful being and inspire fear and respect, as well as sex appeal. Even with all the CGI this Dracula did none of the above.
Dr. Jekill/Mr. Hyde also seemed to be extra, it could have been a deleted scene.
CGI is another factor that bothered me. It's good to have special effects in films, but when it's overdone it looses the effect. Whatever happened to the make-up department? In the old days there were films that portrayed vampires, zombies or other evil entities simply with make-up effects; some looked fake and stupid, but others were truly terrifying.
I suggest to any serious film enthusiast to stay away from Van Helsing. If you still want to watch it, do it only for fun. Just don't expect too much.
House of the Dead (2003)
I will not write a profound comment about this movie. I will stick to what most people think of this piece of garbage. Well, just to add a small comment; this is possibly one of the worst horror movies that has ever been created.
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)
There have been many bad reviews about this new version of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (TCM-2003). Critics all over the country seemed to have been offended by the explicit content of this film. I think what is happening here is that they are forgetting that this is a true horror film. What's expected of a movie that has the words `chainsaw' and `massacre' in it? Definitely not laughs or relaxedness, on the contrary, tension, nerves and fear. Isn't that what we all expect to get from a horror film? I did not live the 70s, but probably when the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre (TCM) was released it caused the same controversy and reactions as the new one is doing. This is a genre that many directors have lost respect for, by creating many stereotypical movies at the start of the 90s and so on. There have been many attempts to create a good horror film since
and where the rest have failed, TCM-2003 is triumphant.
I am a fan of this genre and have seen many horror films from different times, since the 50s to today. As a film enthusiast I like to see the evolution of film-making, in particular the horror genre. I do not mean to put down TCM; like many fans I think it is a great horror film, it has become a classic, but let's be realistic, it does not offer the same emotions that TCM-2003 delivers. Like many of us know TCM has some classic scenes: leatherface's dance, the dinner scene, the eye close-ups and some others. But instead of being horrifying it becomes humorous in its own sick-demented way thanks to the great, unforgettable performance by Jim Siedow (the old man//boss of the clan), who is my favorite character in TCM.
TCM-2003 is raw and powerful. The cinematography is splendid and the acting is also good. The sheriff does a great job, reminiscent of his past history in Full Metal Jacket. The film shows no mercy, is creepy, obscure and full of anger. The setting is also very good; the atmosphere in the house is so thick that it can almost feel as if one was there. Leatherface is truly frightening; his acts are macabre and grotesque.
Overall, TCM-2003 contains all the elements to make it one of the best movies in horror-film history.
Vampyros Lesbos (1971)
Whether is the story, the atmosphere, the camera, the scenery, the beautiful women or the famous psychedelic soundtrack, Vampyros Lesbos is Jess Franco's masterpiece.
This is a different type of vampire movie. Even though the script is weak or perhaps the subtitles to English are not totally accurate, the movie manages to deliver a sheer of brilliance for 90 minutes. Spanish director Jess Franco captured so many details in this movie to make it a classic in the genre. The imagery and foreshadowing are elements that he knew how to handle and adapt to his movie.
As in other Franco films, the gorgeous Soledad Miranda enlightens the screen and delivers the best performance in her short career by portraying Countess Nadine Carody; Count Dracula's widow, a vampiress thirsty for female blood and full of anger against men.
I recommend this film to fans of 70s Euro-Horror, its a gem that shouldn't be overlooked and that will live forever in the dark side.
A Sweet Tale of Love and Madness
May is a splendid horror film.
Definitely, Independent Cinema could be the future of horror. In Indies, there are no boundaries, no taboos, no rules to follow, no millions of dollars to make...its simple and to the point: To deliver a good film with something different to offer to the viewer.
The strong influence of Dario Argento is present throughout the film, as director McKee uses Argento's gore and stylish blood color in his death scenes and also references Argento in several occasions. 1) Trauma. 2) Opera poster in Adam's room. 3) Argento frame in Adam's room. 4) Book Art of Darkness: The Cinema of Dario Argento.
Overall, May is a satisfying horror film that doesn't betray the genre; it stays fresh, gory and weird. It's a nicely done movie from a director that has respect and appreciates the genre.
The first Jesus Franco movie that I saw was Vampyros Lesbos. I liked it very much... it was different, strange and almost hypnotic. I must admit that I liked his style, but the main reason that I continued watching his movies was that in several of his movies he casted Soledad Miranda; a gorgeous Spanish actress that lived in the 70's and that played lead roles in some of his movies. Her screen presence was so powerful, mysterious and unlike any other Hollywood actress today.
Anyways, Eugenie is a story of sex, crime, love and devotion. Miranda plays Eugenie, a quiet young girl that lives with her stepfather in Europe. The stepfather is a famous writer with a secret and perverse dark personality. As the movie develops, Eugenie gets involved with her stepfather in his second personality becoming devoted to his malevolent desires.
The score of the movie blends perfectly with the atmosphere and the characters. The camera work in some scenes is unique and experimental. The movie might seem absurd to many viewers because not everyone is ready for a movie of this class. Overall the movie is good in the style of Jess Franco. Anyone wanting to experience a Franco movie should definitely start with Vampyros Lesbos, as it stands unquestionably as his masterpieces.
Final Destination 2 (2003)
Waste of Time
I can only say that this film is a total waste of time and an insult to the Horror Genre. It is so unrealistic that I even found it funny to certain points. The deaths are so fake and exaggerated. The characters are lame and empty; nonetheless the actors, specially the state trooper... he beat everyone as the worst actor.
Anyway, the film lacks credibility, the way the people die is just not realistic: pigeons, hooks, wires, stairs, trees? Besides all these nonsense, the dialogue is very hollow and absurd. What's even funnier is the way how everything fits into place and everything is so obvious to every character. The gore in the film is not even that cool and the ending could definitely be ranked as one of the stupidiest endings in a horror film. I know that it is only a film and it is only to entertain the audience, well I was entertained, but in a humoristic way.
I do not recommend this film to horror-buffs. Instead keep it old school with 70's and early 80's classics. Many good horror films were done during parts of these 2 decades. Check out something done by Italian director Dario Argento, you will not be disappointed...
Parasaito Ivu (1997)
Great Sci-Fi Film
Parasite Eve is a great sci-fi film. It is intense, suspenseful, dramatic, romantic and quite different than any other film in the genre. The characters are well developed and the story line never fails. The score of the film is brilliant; it transmits the sadness and intensity that the characters are feeling. There might be a version in English of Parasite Eve, but I think, like in any other foreign film, the original language adds a lot more to the movie. So in this case Japanese is more effective and the film should be viewed in its original sound. From start to finish the film grows in intensity without ever failing to keep the audience entertained wondering, imagining, and trying to anticipate the conclusion. Overall, besides being a "scientific" sci-fi movie, the main ingredient through the film is love, loss and the endless possibilities after...
5 stars *****
House of 1000 Corpses (2003)
The Return of Horror in the 21st Century
Despite of all the negative comments out there let's analyze who they are coming from. Many people are commenting how this is the worst piece of crap-movie, pointless, stupid, etc... Well, if you are a non-horror fan or think of horror with movies such as Final Destination, Scream 2&3, Disturbing Behavior, and the worst of all I Know What You Did Last Summer... then yes, the movie probably sucks for you. But only for you.
Now, the true HORROR fan out there will probably agree with me. Through the decades there have been many horror movies. From Hammer to slasher; from vampires to werewolves; from demonic possesions to serial killers; from flesh-eating zombies to evil entities; from mutant creatures to psychotic characters; and the list goes on and on. The horror fan knows the genre. It's true that there are many bad horror films out there, because horror is a delicate genre. It has to be done right, otherwise instead of transmitting the sense of horror to the audience it will make everyone laugh and make fun of the movie.
Well, House of 1000 Corpses goes where no movie in at least the last 20 years has gone. Even though it resembles The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Zombie's movie has quite a bit of its own enchanting moments. **SPOILERS** For instance, the intensity of the scene where they shot a cop on the head. It seems that the movie has been paused. Because for about 40-60 seconds the screen is motionless and there is no audio. Until the silence is broken by a loud bang.
House of 1000 Corpses has enough gore, violence and madness to make you feel weird being an spectator in the theatre. This movie will either be loved or hated. When I saw it at least 15 people walked out of the theatre. The story is not so creative, but just the way that Zombie filmed it and that he wasn't worried about the taboos and cliches that society has created, it's worth it. It's cool to see how he had the guts to make this movie in the present. Horror fans will not be disappointed.
The Core (2003)
There are many comments here that say how bad this movie is, that this movie sucks, that the acting blows, etc... Well, what does the audience expect? As movie buffs (that's why we take the time to write a comment here) we know that these kind of movies do not ever get Academy Award nominations for best actor/actress. They are just made to entertain us with amazing special effects and incredible CGI.
Some people also comment how unrealistic this movie is. Well of course... it has to be, it is a Sci-Fi movie, just like The Matrix, Star Wars, Starship Troopers, The Fifth Element, The Time Machine, ID4, E.T. and many others! That is what a movie in this genre will transmit to the audience. If you do not like unrealistic "stuff" don't watch The Core or any other Sci-Fi Movie,instead watch a drama or something closer to life itself.
Now, The Core is just a plain great adventure. The Plot: Scientists combine intellect to re-activate the core of the earth which stopped spinning. Impossible but very entertainig. The characters are OK, might need more development, but who cares? the movie goes so fast that it is not very noticeable. In general, The Core is a good movie. Something that I liked is that there weren't many one liners or clowns unlike Armaggedon. The Core has its moments, it delivers action, drama, IT-comedy and suspense.
Dog Soldiers (2002)
Brilliant Horror Trip (with a scent of a B-movie)
Dog Soldiers goes where no film has gone in recent years. It has the guts to pursue a story line that nowadays could follow failure, but it doesn't... in fact it excels beyond all the horror attempts that have been created in the last 10 years. This film creates the atmosphere that old horror films used to create, it is violent, wild and gory. It is not that scary, but rather entertaining and fun to watch. The fact that it happens all at night and its humorous remarks, reminded me in particular of the horror cult classic The Evil Dead.
A factor that made this movie even more enjoyable to me were all the comments and jokes about football (soccer) being that I am a fanatic of the sport. Dog Soldiers is a great start for horror in this decade and hopefully more films like this will be made.
A must see film for all horror buffs out there. It will be worth it
Bullets, Great Acting, Laughs, Bullets and More Bullets...
Snatch is just a great film. From the opening to the closing. Its got edge, it's all edge! The characters are cool and the acting is just splendid. Brad Pitt as the pikey, in one of his best performances.
The fact that there are so many characters in the film and that somehow they are all connected through one huge diamond makes this movie unique. I know this has been done before in many films; such as Pulp Fiction, Magnolia or Amores Perros,amongst others, but the way Snatch is told is what makes it extremely enjoyable and the audience can just savor the dialogues, the camera work and even the one liners! Which give the film part of its edge. I guess a writer and director must know that one liners can be truly funny or truly devastating in a film. In this case Guy Ritchie had the right actor, the right scene and the right one liner to elevate the potential of this awesome film.
***** 5 stars
The Ring (2002)
The Ring was a total disappointment. It's amazing how most of the comments indicate that this is a very scary film. I think not. The movie lacks so many factors to be consider a great horror film. It is so predictable, it uses the same theme other movies have used to uncover the death of someone. It's been done, it's pointless, it's not so creative.
There are only 3 good points to this film: 1)The atmosphere: the forest, the cabins, the island, the barn. 2)The tape is pretty creepy (the first time only). 3)Samara coming out of the TV, that was great! and the only scene worthy to be consider horror.
To all those viewers that consider this the scariest movie of all time I recommend the following movies, to be watched at night, alone preferably: The Evil Dead, The Shining, Suspiria, The House by the Cemetery, just to mention a few. These are jewels in the horror genre, you wont be disappointed.