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First Reformed (2017)
Could have been great.
First thing's first, Ethan Hawke is great in this movie. He's an underrated actor and really nails this role. That said, almost nothing else works, mainly because of one large oversight.
It isn't a secret this movie has an environmental agenda. But the extreme measures Hawke eventually adopts to push this agenda, simply aren't believable from where he began at the start of the movie. In order for this to work, you'd either need incredibly tight pacing with a lot of back story and/or flashbacks, or to expand the movie to a 3 hour run-time (or make it a mini-series). As it stands, things happen way too quickly and with almost no explanation. It's hard to take the film seriously because of it, or root for Hawke at all.
With a lot of films, I can understand the hype, and varying viewpoints. But for this, I really find myself stumped. The cinematography and premise are great. But the execution is amateurish, like something was left on the cutting room floor. This is basically a poor man's Taxi Driver with a terrible ending, but it could have been right up there with some adjustments.
Prince of Darkness (1987)
The guy that made Halloween & The Thing, made this?
I guess when the creative juices are flowing, you've just got to roll with it. But this movie is beyond awful.
The entire movie has this lame synth beat playing that kills any sense of tension. The characters are all boring, and the acting very wooden. The creature effects are awful too, with "super soakers" basically being the enemy's most lethal weapon. Also I have never heard so much exposition in a movie. Literally every other scene is a professor explaining what's happening, and what's about to happen. When you have to resort to that, the movie shouldn't even be made. Audiences she be able to understand just through a more fleshed out story and better film making.
It's a decent concept, but when pen met paper I have no idea how someone okay'd this. I guess Carpenter just had that much sway at the time.
Do yourself a favor and skip this pile of trash. This is the kind of trash that shows up on sci-fi or adult swim at 3am, but it's not even funny, or bad on purpose.
Exceptionally creative, but ultimately boring
This is more accurately described as a drama or buddy comedy than a legitimate horror movie. 90% of it is funny conversations and the lead walking around the hills finding clues and silently staring at them. The ending is creative and begs the viewer to rewatch with a fresh take. But sadly so much of the movie is boring there is no way that's happening. I love slow burn horror but there isn't even anything burning here. It's just a slow drama with a meaningless death or two and some funny dialogue.
Lastly, depending on how you feel about the ending... It might trivialize the entire movie. For me personally it did. Obviously can't explain without spoilers, but you've been warned. Also, if you hate ambiguous endings that require googling the explanation... Stay away.
A very boring movie with a rather grotesque finish
This movie is nearly 2 hours long, but you really only need to see the last 15 minutes to witness anything extraordinary. The vast majority of the film is tedious and bleak, not suspenseful and unnerving like you would hope.
I must also admit that I'm not a fan of indie movies. The low budget, amateur camera-work, and bad acting never help anything. Even if this were a theatrical release with a big budget, it still would have sucked though.
To the people saying the ending disturbed them and stuck with them for days - really? This is nothing necessarily unique if you've seen a few horror films. It's pretty messed up, but nothing outrageous. If anything I chuckled at how absurd the finish was. You can see it coming a mile away.
To sum up, this film is basically 80% bullying, 10% over the top bad parenting, and 10% gore. In hindsight, I usually don't like watching any of that, so I'm not sure what the hell I was thinking watching this. I'm a horror fan, but this is just a really weird movie.
Abundantly creative, needlessly confusing, anti-climactic
One of the more creative movies I've ever seen. The premise showed great promise, and it's fleshed out about as far as you could take it. The problem is... things accelerate at such a high rate, that you quickly figure out that the details don't matter. If the movie had a smaller scale, or a more claustrophobic feel, I think it would have worked better. In a mind-bending movie like this, usually noticing details is what pieces everything together. But here, most of what happens turns out to not be of any consequence. The ending only serves to ram this point home - it seems like they just ran out of ideas and wrapped it up as quickly as possible.
I think this was a good film... but with a steadier pace, a tighter narrative, and a stronger finish, it could have been great.
Rosemary's Baby (1968)
It is literally impossible to describe how bad this movie is.
This can barely be described as a horror movie. More than anything, it's a joke, and a bad one at that. There are only 1-2 parts that are even remotely creepy. Everything else is predictable and boring.
I love a slow-burn, but almost nothing happens in this film. And the acting is so bad, it's hard to stay immersed. There are only 1-2 significant plot developments, and they're spaced so far apart that by the 2nd one, you don't even care. You just want it to be over.
The absolute worst part of the film is that it's told from the perspective of a completely helpless person. Yeah, she gets put in a messed up situation. But she has the IQ of a 12 year old to not be able to get out of it. Literally every time she does something right, she turns around and does 5 things wrong. It's insufferable to try to cheer for this dope.
And if that isn't bad enough, after sitting through this incredibly frustrating film, it gives you an ending that provides no payoff whatsoever. All it does it reinforce the moronic nature of the main character, and everything wrong with the movie to begin with.
For this to be considered a classic, I can only assume there are a bunch of old timers reminiscing about the good times and living in denial about films like this. I was excited to watch this movie with all the hype behind it, and I'm not opposed to older movies. But this was just awful. Utterly awful.
If you want to see a real movie focused around witchcraft that is actually a HORROR movie and not some bland genre-bender, watch The Witch (2015). It's everything this abomination isn't.