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Needle (2010)
You can fit the brain of the writer on the tip of a needle.
4 August 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Damn stupid Aussie slasher that predictably tries to throw blame on the protagonist's brother, and this is done shamelessly, using the usual absurd plot-devices that make no sense in hindsight. For example, he is made to smirk like a sociopath and appears precisely where and when a killer would. The film-goers are desperate to make us think it's him, so much so that they achieve the opposite. He just happens to visit after two years, just before the murders. He just happens to shoot murder victims for a living. Far too many coincidences for the movie to get away with. Too manipulative in the dumb sense.

Why do you think the killer wore gloves? Does one operate a machine with frigging gloves? Obviously, because she's a woman. She did that to fool the viewer into thinking the killer's a man: a classic example of a CHARACTER willfully helping the writer achieve his goal - which is of course dumb/absurd beyond words. Anyone could see that coming a mile ahead.

The motive is absurd and so were the lengths she took: the old man's daughter actually PRETENDED to be a lesbian as part of her mega-conspiracy! And what roundabout and NEEDLEssly complicated revenge that is: she proceeds to kill just about anyone connected with the main protagonist - rather than just get on with it, bump 'em off one by one in one sitting. Stupidly - and very predictably - she doesn't get to kill either of the brothers or the girlfriend, the people she really wanted to kill the most. OK, so the killer is a dumb blonde! A dumb blonde for a dumb movie: I can't really complain, in a sense.

I won't even go into how dumb those scenes look in which a hot young blonde starts acting all tough and serial-killery in that extraordinarily unconvincing finale - which plays out predictably and of course stupidly.

A very repetitive plot in a sense: friend gets killed, brother takes pics, brothers discuss case and the whole thing gets repeated. A typical dumb slasher. We watch the protagonists piece the puzzle together, which half the time is a complete waste of screen time: it's a mystery that makes the detective work obsolete and uninteresting because the viewers are a few steps ahead. The viewer simply gets to hear a bunch of things he already knows.

What a dumb script.
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Not nearly as terrifying as Katie's marriage to Cruise.
4 August 2018
Warning: Spoilers
A fairly sadistic and brutal opening scene, especially for what is basically a commercial horror flick with a little brat in the lead role. However, it gets comparatively tame after that.

The premise of vicious little monsters who talk like Gollum is cute and fun, but the plot is quite undisciplined, the writer simply ignoring loose ends in order to move the story forward. For example, after the fat Aussie is attacked, neither the cops nor the Pearce are even a tiny bit curious about how you can "accidentally" get stabbed in several places with sharp objects just by working in a house. Nor do we find out whether Pearce and Holmes are shown the Polaroids that the brat made during the party in the library.

The ending makes little sense: Katie Holmes's voice van be heard whispering to the little Gollums. So did she become one of them? Why and how?
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The mystery of the elusive 70s movie.
4 August 2018
Warning: Spoilers
There must be a logical explanation why this movie is completely overlooked, and why it's been one of the hardest-to-find American films for decades. Although, the latter may well be directly related, at least somewhat, to why this is a complete unknown to most people, even film buffs. I've had it sitting on my waiting list since the 90s; no other movie has eluded me for that long, especially not in the era of free downloads. There were times I was questioning the very existence of this film - that's how impossible it was to find.

Maybe it was a box-office flop, as so many good and great movies are/were, but then again many financial duds get TV re-runs, over and over and over, have their own special DVD/BluRay releases even, so that alone certainly wouldn't explain much. Is it too wild and experimental? Not at all. (In fact, that would only make the movie more appealing for the lunatic fringe, which is always growing, especially among snowflake millennials filled with helpless sadistic rage and aggression.) Is it some odd hence rare example of Hollywood making a politically incorrect movie that doesn't suit movie fans accustomed to political propaganda? No. Is the movie some kind of stereotypical boring commercial fluff with little appeal value to any demographic? Far from it.

The theme may be quite original and there is no movie quite like it, but this is basically a slightly off-the-wall comedy that almost anyone should be able to enjoy. (Or perhaps I'd been watching Monty Python for so long that my sense of the "normal" in terms of comedy is a little skewered.) Having never read the synopsis beforehand - combined with the cult status it "enjoys" as an unfindable movie - lead me to half-expect some bizarre "New Hollywood" LSD trip with gore, which would have explained a lot, but that's not what this is about at all. It is in many ways a typical movie of its period (the best period in cinema): original, wonderfully shot, and unique.

If there is one flaw, it would be the predictability of Keach getting some poetic (in)justice by landing on his own chair. I saw that coming well in advance. Nevertheless, in the film's defense, there are one or two plot-twists right after that, which cement the quality and fun factor of TTE.
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The Ward (2010)
With Carpenter it's usually very hit-and-miss. But this may be his worst film yet.
4 August 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Horror fans are familiar with Carpenter's split personality: the great film-maker and the lousy/lazy film-maker. So who better to do a movie about schizophrenia? The snag is that the lousy Carpenter was in charge when this was made. Perhaps electro-shocks might have helped? Great film-makers can use huge plot-twists without lying to the viewer, whereas lousy film-makers can't.

Meryl Streep's daughter is pretty much the least appealing, worst actress I've seen in ages. When Carpenter screws up, he screws up real proper, and casting his movies with nepotists and bland wallpaper is an integral part of the inept Carpenter.

The film looks plastic and uninspired, with a dumb plot-twist reminiscent of "Identity". All the insane-asylum cliches are covered too. Carpenter doesn't even have the decency to show us any of the women's breasts in the shower scene, that's how far gone he is in his laziness and cluelessness. (I don't include Meryl's demonic offspring, she can stay covered as far as I'm concerned.)
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The 4th Floor (1999)
A good premise ruined by a corny finale and zero logic.
3 August 2018
Warning: Spoilers
A classic example of how to ruin a good set-up with a crappy finale worthy of a Bugs Bunny cartoon (provided those cartoons sucked caj*nes and were made by cretins). The first hour sets up an interesting mystery that touches vaguely on the haunted house genre, but when the villain reveals itself the movie falls apart like a badly stacked up deck of cards hit by a cyclone.

The villain is none other than the old geezer from the building. Now a quick rundown of the shoddiness of the goofy finale: the old geezer is basically indestructible and insane (though not near insane enough to pull of a string of tricks and manipulations that would normally require a sound mind and a dozen people). Juliette Lewis who shows spunk and courage throughout the movie behaves like a little schoolgirl lost when faced with this non-formidable foe who is shorter than Tom Cruise and has the build of a 14 year-old kid. She gets knocked out by him - yet again (does he walk barefoot? float through air?) - and then it's time for Thrilleric Clicherama 101: she knocks him out with a rod, but instead of finishing him off she, very typically for thriller/horror victims, throws AWAY her weapon, turns her backhriller/horror victims, throws AWAY her weapon, turns her back to the predictably not-badly-injured villain and very predictably he gets up to resume chasing her and endangers her yet again. Wow. Why must victims in thrillers always be so damn stupid in crucial situations?

WHY do people who fight for their lives - in dumb thrillers and horrors (obviously, not in real life, when everyone goes to much greater lengths to crush/bash/annihilate/destroy/pulverize/neutralize/bash the attacker) - never CONTINUE bashing the villain, just to make sure they're incapacitated, severely injured or thoroughly killed? Is this some unwritten-rule pacifist movie thing invented by left-wing writers whereby the hero can never be shown to be human i.e. justifiably vicious toward their attacker?

Dumber still, the janitor (played conveniently by the "Saw" guy before "Saw" was written and released by random dweeby knuckleheads), can't manage to overpower this tiny little old man, in a scene so stupid it can compete with any horsepoop from "Saw" or the even more amazingly dumb "Copycat" - perhaps even an Argento thriller. And then William Hurt just happens to arrive, and even he struggles to get the old man to put down the weapon.

The killer's motives for murdering so many building residents without anyone noticing they're missing or dead? Some gobbledygook about Ancient Egypt, the serenity of peace and what-not: it's not as if any of that stuff made enough sense for me to pay much attention to the killer's obligatory and very silly why-I-dood-it speech. We never find out WHY the stench of several corpses - plus the maggots - only manage to reach and bother Lewis. Nor do we quite understand how come NOBODY wants to believe Lewis despite the fact she has bundles of evidence. The nonsense reaches Hitchockian levels, because the overrated chubster also tended to use ridiculous plot-devices that ensured that nobody ever believed the protagonist.

Furthermore, they couldn't resist make the conspiracy even sillier. The epilogue heavily hints that William Hurt was in cahoots with the old geezer, which throws the already inane and far-fetched plot squarely into totally absurd territory. Once Lewis's boyfriend is somehow involved, one can safely say that literally nothing ties up logically.

It gets dumber. The "Saw" guy acts extremely suspiciously. In fact, what Lewis saw through the window in his apartment should have pegged him as a serial-killer, at the very least, and yet he turns out to be a helper in need. In fact, everyone is made to behave suspiciously or oddly, including Shelley Duvall and even Lewis's female colleague. Needless to say, the viewer is lied to and manipulated in the worst shoddy-plot-device way, and then "rewarded" for his time spent watching this dross by giving us the most laughable killer in years.

You anyway won't be able to find this movie easily, because it's made-for-TV drivel.
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The Den (2013)
An impossibly stupid serial-killa-thrilla without an ounce of credibility or logic.
31 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Everything about this movie is dumb. As in D-U-M-B.

Let me re-spell that. DUMB - just in case you didn't catch it the first time. STOOPID works too.

Right off the bat the movie lets us know it wants to be dumb. They couldn't think of anything better, more rational or logical than have the main character get a whole bunch of money from some moronic fictional company to do something NOBODY would hire anyone to do, especially not a useless L.A. bimbo: chat with a bunch of people online. That would be like spending money for a study to find out why people go to McDonald's and what they do there: they bloody eat. "Could you pay me tons to watch baseball games and the NBA?" That sort of thing. "Hey, I found this company that's willing to pay me make a study of what alcohol does to people!" Yes, companies can hardly wait to throw away money on useless things! But that's the least of this turkey's problems.

I hoped this was a supernatural, nifty thriller a-la "Unfriended" from which it borrows the basic set-up. But it turns out to be just another anti-intelligent modern serial-killa-thrilla with omnipotent sadists who seem to have more super-powers and abilities than all of Marvel's stupidly clad clowns combined. If only the producers of this dross had hired that writer of said film to help out with this lame script which was obviously written by zombies who treat their viewers like, well, zombies. You didn't feel like a zombie watching this? Well, I did.

The cretinized conspiracy offered here in the usual cretinous manner is a very absurd, undoable, extremely far-fetched and intelligence-insulting joke, almost like a prank being played on the viewer. In "Hostel" the conspiracy had a realistic logic to it: there are sadistic people out there and they'd pay lots of money to be able to torture people at their own time, free of any legal hassles, and without having to hunt down their own victims: the murders are perpetrated in a far-off place - and certainly not against cops and even detectives like here! (I was half-expecting a celebrity or a country's president to be kidnapped and shot for fun.) In "Hostel" things are done hush-hush, discreetly, unlike in this silly turkey, which is why that movie is chilling, because it is grounded in reality, because it seems like it CAN happen.

This bomb however is grounded in a crapcake garden (where t**ds grow out of the grass along with the poop-stained script) which is why none of it is effective. One of the things that make this movie DUMB beyond words is that this kind of conspiracy would require dozens of people involved, in which case it couldn't remain secret for longer than 10 seconds: yes, the FBI would find out about it pretty quickly. And no, they wouldn't all end up in the "den" as prisoners because in the real world (that world that has nothing to do with this malarkey) these sadistic losers wouldn't stand a chance of running such a site longer than 5 minutes. Because no vast conspiracy can remain secret for very long: that's just human nature. The more people are involved in something large yet clandestine, let alone extremely illegal, the more chances rise exponentially that someone either screws up or starts talking. This goes especially for a conspiracy that involves mentally unstable sociopaths - rather than scientists and bureaucrats or what have you.

I mean, come on, people, ISIS only wish they had this kind of organizational skills! ISIS are nowhere nearly as organized and master-mind-brilliant as this absurd outfit and yet they have the western world by the caj-ones. So what kind of cosmic power do these knuckleheads have that they can organize a venture of this magnitude - simply to run an internet site! That's their motive for all this? You gotta be kidding me. And people actually get into this...

That's their motive? To run a sadistic site - which you ANYWAY can fake these days with CGI and clever editing, especially given the kind of enormous budget this ridiculous organization seems to work with. (Again, ISIS is jealous.) Why risk killing all these people for a quick buck (the revenue stemming from presumably 1000s of site users - at least one of which will report the site to the cops) when all of those can be easily faked - as this movie, for example, shows (badly though), and as all the other thrillers show. Some people are so gullible they will believe "Star Wars" is real, let alone a fake snuff film.

In other words, the people who run this organization are so THICK that they would jeopardize everything by actually attacking and killing cops and detectives? Even after they kill or abduct one person from someone's circle of friends - which means the cops start an investigation - rather than WITHDRAW and decide to harass someone else they actually go out and kill the cops too! (And they kill them so easily. As if cops and detectives go alone when entering premises where extreme danger might be lurking. This writer has seen way too many Dirty Harry flicks.) This is so asinine that even the tiniest thriller-fan amoeba should feel its intelligence is being insulted. The conspiracy goes so deep that one of the killers just waltzes inside the pregnant woman's house and harasses her a short while after her house is swarmed by the police. (The usual nonsense: a conspiracy that MUST go all the way to the White House, probably. Is Obama in on this too?)

Speaking of which, WHY did they not kill that woman and the unborn child? Are they implying that this organization has MORALS, boundaries they won't cross? Because certainly the reason couldn't have been the approaching police sirens, because a slice of the knife lasts just a second. The movie contradicts itself in the dumbest way possible.

The main character said she hates cats (an unforgivable sin) so I was hoping half-way through the film that cat-lovers were the ones torturing her. Even THAT would make a lot more sense and would certainly be at least original rather than this "Hostel" rip-off premise which sponges off all the dumb all-powerful thrilla-killa cliches that'd been used tons of times, especially in recent years during which the thriller genre had sunken to new lows. The movie does manage to top its own conspiracy nonsense by allowing the puny, skinny, tiny 50-kilo female protagonist to kill two of these clowns and to badly hurt at least two more. That in itself is a contradiction, because if they're as powerful and cunning as they'd been shown previously - even killing cops and detectives with total ease - how the hell do they get impaled, stabbed and killed by one of their harmless victims?

I hope films can't get any dumber than this. But every time I said that before, someone came up with an even more moronic killa-thrilla. Despite this seeming like an impossible mission, I do not doubt that there are even dumber new thrillers out there. The future looks bright for fans of garbage.
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Oculus (I) (2013)
Elephant v ants. A pointless battle with a predictable outcome.
31 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
A seemingly interesting premise (though not nearly as original as horror newbies who've only seen 5 "scary" movies think it is), original only inasmuch as it hasn't been used often (the way vampires and zombies have). The film is executed well from a technical point, and with a competent cast, but unfortunately yet another pointless retelling of the ant vs. elephant story, the most pointless fable of them all.

We know the elephant is infinitely superior to the ant in every way conceivable, so why watch the duel? I never watch Djokovic or Nadal play a guy ranked outside the top 100, because the outcome is just too predictable. Remember that hilarious Python sketch in which John Cleese beats up a schoolgirl over and over in a box-ring? Similarly, once the mirror elephant showed that it can literally do ANYTHING it wants to, what chance did the two ant siblings have? Zero. And so they got royally screwed - as ants always do when picking a fight with an elephant.

The entire movie is about how the ant siblings don't stand a smidgen of a chance against their mighty adversary. But believing that the writer can't be THAT unimaginative, that daft, we the gullible, easily dupable viewers hope that the film gives the ants some kind of an innovative, unexpected lifeline, to turn the tables, to make the war interesting. No dice. For the duration, the ants lose round after round - just like Connie Booth in the boxing ring vs Cleese - while we even get "bonus scenes" to watch them lose round after round as kids too - and then the mirror comes out as the undisputed winner with flying colours, as it had been for centuries. Hence a question to the lousy writer: WHY tell this story if it's the same story that's been going on for centuries with that mirror? Why THIS mirror episode and not any of the previous ones?

If we the gullible viewers are to be handed a totally lop-sided fight - which is in itself idiotic because the outcome is a foregone conclusion hence boring - which involves a superior warrior battling a tiny defenseless infant, at least give the infant a fighting chance: make up something, anything, invent a way for the infant to fight back (give him toxic drool or something). Otherwise what you're serving to the viewer serves no purpose whatsoever: telling viewers that total superiority must always beat total inferiority is like informing them - in an "astounding" plot-twist - that the sky is blue. But, once again, feeble-brained film-makers have such a raging st*ffy for turning this stupid mirror into a franchise, that they wanted to make sure that the sequel door was left wide, very wide, open. What a dumb overkill though.

I shall make sure I skip "Oculus 2: The Return of the Predictable Superior Mirror", "Oculus 3: Mirror Kills More Helpless Inferior Humans", "Oculus 4: The Mirror Has A Ball Killing 100 More People Without Being Ever Even Slightly Challenged" and "Oculus 5: Mirror Destroys Entire Cities Without Even Trying".

Nor did I like the movie's increasingly schizophrenic dual-time story-telling style which gave us too much detail of what happened a decade earlier - despite the fact we could already predict the outcome. Very silly. And what's the mirror's back-story anyway? Who built it? When was it built? Nope, we don't even get a tiny clue. Despite the hype and the flash, this is a very primitive, idiotic movie.
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Gabriel (2007)
Purgatory is a dark, slow and illogical place.
29 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
In Purgatory demons and angels fight each other over souls. Sort of like "Blade Runner" meets "The Prophecy". I just have a few questions:

1. The introductory captions state quite clearly that only one angel and one demon is allowed per cycle. And yet nearly all of the 14 demons and angels are present in Purgatory.

2. Only one demon and one angel allowed? Let's say that was the case: does that mean there are actual rules to this tug-of-war game between the Horned One and God? If there are, then there must be a referee to enforce them. This begs the question: who is it?

3. What are young kids doing in Purgatory? If humans don't hold children legally accountable for crimes why does God punish them for sins? What did they do: steal milk? Hit a friend on the head? Use "nya-nya-nyanya-nya" to taunt their friends in playgrounds?

4. If you find yourself in Purgatory, surely you'd be HEAVILY inclined and motivated to be good - coz you found evidence of afterlife hence why would evil reign in the city? Shouldn't EVERY lost purgatorian soul be vying to get into the shiny place rather than the fiery place?

5. Guns in Purgatory? Really? Now, how the hell did humans manage to smuggle guns into that place? Oh right... the Devil. He is the arms dealer probably.

6. How can civilians be killed in Purgatory? Aren't they already dead and awaiting some heavenly tribunal or something to decide whether they go up or down? Where do they go next, another Purgatory?

7. What a weird plot-twist: angel Michael had become the leader of Hell's minions. Not only that, but his identity wasn't known by God? Gabriel was sent to Purgatory WITHOUT knowing this crucial fact? So basically God doesn't even pay attention to what's going on in purgatory; I guess it's not a priority. Do Satan and God just send angels and demons and not check up whats going on there? At least occasionally?

8. One would expect a female angel to be beautiful, but instead the pungent casting director gave us a nepotist, the irony being that even the demon blonde looks a lot better.

Yes, on closer scrutiny nothing makes sense, but then again one is not supposed to let common sense get in the way of entertainment in those religious flicks. The plot moves quite slowly, this being a lengthy film, and the action scenes - whatever few there are - don't display much flash.
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Utterly illogical.
29 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Like so many found-footage crappolas that reveal a major spoiler in the first scenes, this one doesn't respect the viewer either because it tells us straight away that the three characters will all be killed. (As if the film has so much else going for it that it can actually afford to give away a major spoiler!) So why should I hide the spoilers?

"The **** is this?!" says Brody at one point. It's as if he speaks for 99% of the viewers: "the **** is this found footage nonsense?! The **** is this dumb movie that makes no sense? The hell am I doing watching three nincompoops stumble around in the dark?!"

American Brody plans a night out in the woods with his English girlfriend Kerry, played by the ravishing Anna Skellern, but we soon find out that she is in fact a slag. The third person joining them is not her cousin, as she claims, but her ex. Brody straight away shows jealousy, but the slag isn't that bothered - for the moment at least.

The viewers are first lead to believe that the trio will encounter some loony cult, then they find out that Brody is scheming something - because he knows about Leo and Kerry being former screw-colleagues. For some reason he had never confronted Kerry with the damning evidence of Leo sniffing her underwear, or whatever, earlier on, but decided instead to teach her a lesson(?) by getting her to experience an "epiphany"(???) as he so stupidly says. (By leaving her in the woods? Huh? Or by making her watch all those pointless peeping-tom clips of her?) We never find out what bloody epiphany he's talking about because all hell breaks loose - as things tend to in horror films and especially in the woods at night - and nothing ever gets explained. People just end up running around screaming, alternately chasing or following one another, stumbling in the dark - perhaps trying to entertain the viewers? Even a standard love-triangle drama between those three buffoons would have been far more enjoyable than this pitiful excuse for a horror film.

To cut a very long, very silly story short, the movie constantly lies to the viewer, but in a very clumsy way that makes no sense. Loony woodsman? Druid cult? Witches? Brody the killer? Leo the killer? Who the hell is the killer?

Kerry finally finds Brody, distraught and injured, and just as she finally regains her trust in him, she finds Leo's bracelet - and suddenly that makes her distrust Brody again! WHY? What does the bracelet prove either way? She'd already been ATTACKED by Leo beforehand, so what bloody difference does the bracelet make? WHY would she blame Brody for Leo's behaviour - unless she thought Brody is some kind of a sorcerer who put a spell on Leo to turn him into a murderer? There is nothing whatsoever in the movie to hint that Brody might have such miracle powers. Hence Kerry is an imbecile?

Or how about Kerry being chased by someone (the hell knows who), then suddenly falling down (without explanation), taking a nap while being filmed by the mystery person, then getting up again and resuming her running? What the hell was that about? This movie throws almost random stuff at you, as if desperately hoping that you're one of those nitwits who thinks that the more confusing a thriller is the more brilliant it must be. You know, the sort of people (hipsters, for example) who actually worship David Lynch's more recent dross, or who consider De Palma to be some sort of genius because all of this, thrillers are utterly cretinous.

There's more nonsense. Leo talks into the camera, saying how he knows that Brody once attacked a woman. How does he know this? How come he never told Kerry about it? None of this stuff adds up even remotely.

The epilogue is hilarious: "After an intensive police search, none of the three people were ever found." What they really should have put in the caption is this: "Despite gathering hours of (found) footage, the director hasn't found a way to meaningfully tie it all up together. He totally failed in editing it in a way that would remotely be logical, which is why what you've just seen makes zero sense - and you're a gullible for hoping a found-in-sewage flick with a title that promises dark wobbly scenes with lost of pointless screaming might actually be good."

Fine, I'm a gullible. Although, in my defense, I took this movie only because Anna is in it.
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Hollow (I) (2011)
The movie starts off with a spoiler. So the question is: can any review of this Dreck contain spoilers?
26 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
There's nothing much to write because nothing much happens in the film - aside from the opening scene which actually serves as a SPOILER by telling us in advance that all four main characters will be hung on the tree! So not only is the movie devoid of thrills and dull, it doesn't even let you guess. Typical found-footage crap.
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13 Eerie (2013)
How do you best help zombies eat humans in an area called "13 Eerie"? Answers follow.
26 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
1. You make sure someone is clumsy enough to accidentally spill a black acidic liquid on all the cables and walkie-talkies so that the humans can't be in communication with each other once the poop hits the fan.

2. Make sure that when the equipment does work, it works only when there's no danger.

3. Make sure that when the equipment does resume working after it's been fixed, only the ex-con (whom everyone treats like a child and whom nobody believes a word he says) gets to see a zombie on the TV monitor.

4. You make sure that all the forensic-science students are imbeciles who treat each other as imbeciles hence don't ever take each other seriously when any of them show any concern for their safety - and this despite the group being in the middle of nowhere on a forest island where unpredictable things CAN happen (as even any small child knows).

5. You make sure the zombies all learned their walking and sneaking techniques at the military zombie boot-camp so they can sneak up on humans who only spot the zombie when he's just a meter away from them - or already gnawing at their leg or arm. The zombies don't even have to try to sneak up: they're just given that gift by default - because the writer had to resort to weak plot-devices because he couldn't think of a smart or logical way of endangering the humans.

6. You make sure the professor treats his students as utter imbeciles, so that when a female student informs him that she saw a 4th corpse - when there are only supposed to be three - he reacts with "impossible!", dismissively ignoring her factual statement and both of them going on with the work as though she had never noticed anything. Did he consider this to be a hallucination? He trusts his students so little, that he can't even believe their ability to identify a corpse. (They're forensic students even, just keep that in mind though.) I seriously doubt real forensic professors and students are anywhere nearly as childish and stupid as that.

7. Make sure that the students reciprocate the professor's lack of respect in their intelligence by not showing any respect or trust in the professor, which allows the students to draw conclusions as idiotic as "the professor must have tinkered with the corpse do mess with us". By "tinkered" they mean pull out all its innards outside while they're were away. Yes, that's what forensic professors do on field trips: they goof off.

8. Make sure the professor is so delusional, arrogant - as well as stupid - that when a student tells him that he heard screaming in the woods the professor ignores him: despite several people missing already. (I see potential for a sketch there: "Screams? Extra corpses? Come on, stop talking nonsense. You're all dummies and I hate you and nothing you say makes any sense."

9. Just make sure everyone is an imbecile, alright? Except the zombies, who are supposedly really dumb but somehow outwit the humans most of the time.

10. Make sure that a zombie - when walking slowly - is faster than a student who's running. Make sure your zombie can catch a running human even if he crawls on all four, let alone walks slowly.

11. Make sure that the humans behave even more stupidly once they finally realize they're under attack. For example, allow one of the students to ATTACK the ex-con after the ex-con tells him that they're all under attack. Makes sense, right? It's sort of like a policeman telling you there's a serial killer on the loose, and you react by punching the policeman for telling you that.

12. Make sure the humans are so incompetent that they wound each other in some classic "friendly fire" nonsense. Katherine Isabelle (looking hot as always) wounds her boyfriend in the back in a very idiotic scene.

13. Make sure the humans can't figure out that it's the head they need to shoot or destroy - even when they'd already figured it out! Isabelle says "if I become one of them, shoot me in the head", but an hour later she can't seem to hit the head even from very close range. We can't quite figure out: is she an imbecile or is she just such a lousy shot that she can't hit a huge zombie cranium from a meter's distance, shot after shot?

It's also interesting that the movie suggests that being a forensic student means that your accommodations consist of a bed with animal carcasses lying on it. So medical students are immune to extreme lack of hygiene?

And must the zombies pose? Whenever a zombie has ample time (or he thinks he does) to attack and kill a human, he sort of poses for a few seconds, growls in a show-off kind of way, almost does a rap pose, and THEN attacks. Why do we have to even have zombies be so self-aware these days? Will zombies start becoming hipsters too? Will they start releasing rap albums? Reading beatnik "poetry"? Wearing funny hats?

There's plenty of stupid stuff in this zombie flick, but it's watchable, not least of all because Katherine Isabelle isn't just anyone. Yes, she's a nepotist, but she's a very sexy nepotist, a rarity.
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Chinese water-torture in the middle of an ocean.
26 July 2018
There are very few directors that make me cringe as much as Wes, and God knows there are many embarrassingly bad "auteurs" out there. He tries so hard to be deadpan, clever, original, intellectual and profound even, but falls so flat, fails every single time. He could take a lesson or two from Hal Hartley on how to cast, write and direct this type of comedy.

Wes's only talent is to set up a scene visually. That's it. That's literally all he can do well. He should be a cinematographer only, and stop thinking he is more than just a guy who's good with the camera. A great visual style comparable to Kubrick and other greats, though? I need to sniff those mushrooms too. I bet they're Bolivian.

He makes comedies tailor-made for hipsters. Wes even throws in a couple of useless Bowie songs, hence endearing himself to those skinny poseurs forever. He picked 70s Bowie songs which of course makes him "legit". Hilarious.

And the ca-jones he has to extent this dull plot to two hours! Wes doesn't follow even the most basic rules of comedy and common sense: don't go over 90 minutes when doing horror or comedy. Only a select few geniuses can get away with a 2-hour comedy without torturing the viewer. Though I did feel violated already after 30 minutes of this dross. So it's a bit like Chinese torture. Plenty of water in the movie to go around water-torturing millions of people.

Oh well, at least he didn't cast the movie so badly this time. Wes seems to think that Owen Wilson and Schwartzman are comedic geniuses. He even casts Brody in comedies. Admittedly, casting Brody in ANYTHING is a sign of blithering incompetence.
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You're Next (2011)
I'm next. Or I was. They wanted to lobotomize me with this film, but they failed.
26 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Yet another idiotic modern thriller. Just as moronic, illogical and far-fetched as most others. Hence its very solid rating, because people just love their thrillers dumb. As dumb as possible, in fact. Nothing's too dumb: logic is the real enemy these days. This can be seen in politics and just about everything else too.

1. In a room full of people, it takes them ages to realize the director was shot and that the window is smashed. Or were they going for Bugs Bunny slapstick?

2. It takes them ages to realize they should stay away from the windows.

3. "Mobile phones don't work!" (They never do, of course.) Then they give us a lame-o excuse why they don't work, but I don't buy it for one second.

4. They send a woman - running - outside. Extremely dumb idea, ends predictably.

5. A killer gets pinned down with a huge kitchen knife. Seconds later he disappears. As usual, serial-killers have superhuman strength and supernatural abilities - in a non-supernatural setting. They also predict events much better than average humans. Modern thrillers: the age of the genius omnipotent serial-killer.

6. I knew the left-wing chick would turn out to be the toughest one: it's in the nature of U.S. thrillers to be as PC as possible - not just dumb.

7. Why wear masks? They intend to kill them anyway.

8. People get stabbed in the back - but run or walk away anyway.

9. A couple devises the entire shebang - while they're at the house. Why would they do that? Just so the audience can have the first of a series of moronic plot-twists.

10. Brother conspirator stabs his brother then says I'm sorry. Wow. It's frightening to consider that some people enjoy this silly junk.

Trust me, I could go all the way to 100. And that's why thrillers are ideally suited for people who simply don't give a toss about intelligent plot-development. It's a totally pleb genre.

As for this being considered a "black comedy" by some, people who think that should finally face their inner sociopath. Fascinatingly enough, this obsession of finding humour in sadistic movies (even when there is none, or very little) is very much a hipster hobby. Or perhaps some people just can't comprehend that that there are such dumb film-makers out there so they simply assume the nonsense must be intended to be ironic or "clever" in some intentional way. Some people aren't bright enough to distinguish between a dumb monologue (by fatso) and intentional comedy.
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Housebound (2014)
Whenever a movie aims for that elusive "cult status", you know chances are it stinks.
24 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Standard: whenever a horror film has a high rating, it invariably turns out to be crap. If you prefer to be alternately bored (the damn thing is almost two hours) but also flabbergasted by the most asinine plot imaginable, watch this garbage. Just don't go whining to me that I hadn't warned you.

It's not a real comedy. It's just a highly cretinous thriller with the usual sub-standard Kiwi humour thrown in occasionally. The plot-twists are mind-boggling in their imbecility, starting from the guy who's been living - undetected - within the walls of the house for years (living on air and worms?), then the junkie who doesn't lose her house-arrest privileges even after numerous incidents (including stabbing a man with scissors), all the way to the intelligence-insulting twist that gives us the SOCIAL WORKER as the girl's killer.

Utter rubbish in every conceivable way, with so many plot holes that it's the movie equivalent of cheese. Avoids the lowest rating for the peeing scene.
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Arrival (II) (2016)
A bunch of octopussies travel all the way to Earth just to give us a riddle.
24 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Usually a bad movie is either boring or stupid. This flick manages to connect a bridge between the two, accomplishing what only a select few bad movies have done before. Congrats, Villeneuve. If I used to be 99% sure I'll never watch your awful Blade Runner "sequel", now I am 100% sure of it.

These "superior aliens" are so inept and disorganized that they didn't even have the basic common sense to first LEARN an Earth language - ANY language (Swahili if need be) - BEFORE landing with 12 egg-shaped hover-crafts on Earth, scaring the bejesus out of everyone. Surely these "superior" aliens (let's call them squiddies) are smart enough to realize that Earthlings are deeply divided, paranoid, dumb and easily frightened. No? Well, in that case the squiddies are daft too, and that means the whole movie falls apart because its fundamental premise of a superior alien race doesn't hold water.

Speaking of water, they look like octopus. OK, fine: better than skinny bug-eyed big-headed generic anal-probing Area 51 type of green lizards, but hardly original or menacing or interesting. And the squiddies fire black ink too: what is this, a comedy? Is the fact they're octopussies the reason why they got along so well with girl-power girl?

I commend the film for not making this yet another absurd U.S.-centric invasion flick in which only Americans make decisions, where EVERYTHING revolves around the White House. Admittedly, Americans save the day - again - but at least it's not JUST about the Americans. But the way the movie goes about making this a global invasion is just embarrassing; it's pedestrian, utterly unrealistic. In essence, the best minds in TWELVE (read: 12) countries are working on this mystery, and yet the ONLY person who makes any significant progress is a linguist professor at some rinky-dink U.S. college where 5 kids show up to class. And when she finally makes a large breakthrough, those same government hotshots who trusted her and hired her aren't that interested in what she's got to say. Really?

The film is trying to tell me that China and Russia are so trigger-happy that they can hardly wait to attack a species that is so advanced that humans couldn't even figure out how they communicate between their 12 ships. Humans couldn't even figure out what the ships were made of! Yet they wanted to nuke them. WITHOUT being attacked first. It's so idiotic, you need be a fan of "Armageddon" to believe any of this malarkey.

The film is somewhat "serious" science-wise - at least until the story turns all stephenkingsian on us by unloading a huge psychic turdcake under our collective noses. Suddenly Louise reads the future! Why? How? Why her? What about the Russian and Chinese counterparts? Was the Sudanese girl-power linguist expert not competent enough to learn this "time language"? Did the Pakistani girl-power linguist not try hard enough? Was she a lot less smart? Lazier? What?... Sure, whatever. It's Hollywood 2016 i.e. it has to be dumb.

Louise's sudden psychic powers are explained by her learning this "time language". Her theory that learning a language changes how you think was far-fetched enough as it is, but acceptable. They had to go a step further, however, and introduce this ludicrous premise that there is a language that makes you... see the future? I know this is sci-fi (well... soppy chick-flick sci-fi) but this is just too silly.

I also struggle with this laughable idea that aliens come here just to give us a puzzle to solve.

"We came here to help you, BUT you have to first solve an incredibly difficult puzzle. Failure to solve it could have disastrous consequences and actually ruin you more than help you, but we are willing to take that chance because we love playing around funny guessing games involving ink with inferior clowns such as yourself."

By the time the movie had already spent HALF-AN-HOUR on humans trying to communicate with squiddies, I was getting impatient, figuring "well, the film's gotta move on soon, can't be possibly ALL about this linguistic riddle nonsense". Oh yes, it can! The entire movie is about this puzzle-solving drivel and those boring meetings between the romantic couple and squiddies! Nothing else. In fact, there are 37 of these meetings and I'm just thankful that Villeneuve decided to show us "only" 6-7 of those. (Feels like 15-20, but that's just me.)

The "future flashbacks" concerning her daughter are so very boring, mushy and visually flat, I wanted to fast-forward them: they look like shampoo commercials. In fact, my finger was nervously circling the FF button during the entire movie. I felt like I'd spent an entire day watching this dreary nonsense.

Get this: Louise has a child with lover-boy DESPITE knowing her daughter will die in her teens!!! Kinda defeats the whole purpose of HAVING premonition, doesn't it? "Well, done, girl-power girl! You have obtained the power to see the future. Now feel free to not use it by not avoiding major mistakes such as giving birth to faulty kids". Un-be-lieveable. Some people actually find this TOUCHING, INSPIRING even. Say what? Obviously people who agree with her decision don't have children of their own.

I also have to mention how unconvincing and dumb the notion of a benevolent alien race is. Look, I like octopussies as much as the next person, but the idea that a superior alien race is this NICE to us for no real reason than because they have great etiquette and a perfect moral compass, is asinine. It is actually possible to make movies with goody aliens, but it's very difficult to make them convincing and intelligent.

The incessant MUMBLING of the entire cast doesn't help either. These thespians hadn't even learned to SPEAK, yet they'd been cast in a big-budget film about a linguistic expert trying to solve a language riddle. Kind of ironic.
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There should be a special film genre called "boredom cinema".
24 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
One of those low-budget mockumentary stinkers that have a very thin story (or in this case no story), just a bunch of annoying actors saying essentially the same thing over and over, implying that some weird danger is afoot. And they keep promising this danger, and promising and promising it to the increasingly restless viewers, but it never materializes - until the very last scene: but at that point it's a wrap-up, folks! You got nothing! Now go back to your real horror films, folks. In that sense, not much different from "Monster A Go-Go" actually.

The first hour is incredibly boring. All we get is the backstory of some dullard who may or may not have seen supernatural things, brought to us by actors that somehow manage to be quite annoying, and this goes basically for the male cast. They serve us the most boring details, over and over. An "expedition" made up of some of these amateur goons goes to his ranch, and they just wonder around aimlessly while doing their corny little camcorder improv shtick. OK, at least they're not teens, but they might as well be, intellectually.

After the first hour things pick up - ever so slightly, almost unnoticeably. The characters bicker and they seem scared - while the viewer waits impatiently for something horror-like to happen. Or at least some proper hints and clues as to what the hell they're supposed to find there: a cult? Indian sacrifice? What? Nope, we get no info at all. You, the viewer, are low in the pecking order and not much of a priority for the amateurs who make these kinds of turkeys.

And then the two idiotic plot-twists. It was all fake! Tuh-duh! The twerp set the whole thing up. Seconds after he reveals this stupid and quite illogical surprise, the group gets attacked by the real forces of evil and that's it. No explanation, not even an inkling of a hint of a clue. Like a Bugs Bunny cartoon, minus the ingenuity.

So if your idea of scary entertainment is watching boots hung on trees, or bad actors pretending they're frightened despite nothing much happening around them, this might be a film for you. Have fun with this dross, because these film-makers are in need of fans. Any fans. Clueless newbie horror fans and anyone else who finds boring things interesting.
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Antibirth (2016)
Lyonne plays this for laughs.
24 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
For fans of bizarro cinema within a horror-film context, look no further. Not preposterously "far-out" as some of those idiotic, depraved, glue-sniffing, obscure Euro-trash hipster flicks from the 70s (always rated highly due to hipster bee-hive swarm-voting), but weird enough for the average film-goer. So if you're a meth-sniffing self-loather looking for something truly decadent and morbid, this might disappoint you because it isn't nearly as misanthropic as you'd like it to be.

Best described as a slow-paced version of "Rosemary's Baby" and "X-Files" with a touch of "Jacob's Ladder". In fact, the movie's main flaw is that it moves at a snail's pace some of the time. Could and should have been 20 minutes shorter. The other, though lesser, problem is Natasha Lyonne who seems to play quite a few scenes for laughs. Perhaps the director wanted her to play it that way (which would mean he's quite confused and clueless), or what's more likely is that the screenwriter wasn't smart enough to realize that her usual "chummy BFF teen" shtick doesn't work within this frame-work - in which all the other actors say serious lines. Only she seems to play her role almost as if it's a semi-sitcom - and she's the most suffering character by far. How do you write goofy lines for one character but have everyone else behave seriously? Never liked her, to be honest. (Guess how she got into movies? Three-letter word.)

So who says there are no movies for women, huh? Almost all the main characters are female, and they're well fleshed-out and not stereotypical. Sure, Lyonne plays incredibly ditsy street trash, a mindless drug-addicted skank of the lowest order, but this isn't B-movie characterization whereby everyone fits into neatly defined, very boring, predictable boxes.

Which brings me to why this isn't nearly as suspenseful as it could have been. None of the characters are likable or even marginally moral, except Meg Tilly's, so why the hell would we give a hoot what happens to Lyonne? Her disregard for her potential baby and her own health are so extreme that I sort of figured that no matter what happens to her she had it coming. How do you identify or sympathize with someone that far gone in decadence and stupidity? Darwinism at work, if you ask me. I always struggled to feel sorry for hardcore junkies.

Now for the loony finale. "With your body we can create a new race that will allow us to supply an everlasting demand for submission" says the mysterious black guy. But what does that even mean? Please analyze this statement, filter it through this movie's logic and script, and then tell me in all honesty that it means anything. It just sounds like some random sci-fi/horror gobbledygook that's intended to cheat the viewer out of a real explanation by sounding cryptic and pulp-fictiony.

The great finale is kind of predictable, I'm sorry to say: who didn't see it coming that she'd give birth to a monster? Did anyone expect Donald Duck to plop out of there? In that sense, the ending is a lot like a typical corny 50s monster flick, except that the monster comes out of a punani rather than a mad scientist's lab. And Gabriel getting killed by the monster was also very predictable. What was surprising though is how positively Tilly reacted to Lyonne plopping a severed monster head out of her va-jey-jey.

Because Lyonne's severely toxic, drug-infested womb was ideal for impregnation with an alien being, does that mean that Lemmy from Motorhead would have been the ideal sperm-donor? Just speculating. I do like the movie's anti-drug "message" though - if we can call it that.
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If Gervais thinks this unfunny dross is some kind of hard-hitting smart political satire, then he must be completely delusional.
23 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
If you wanted concrete unassailable proof that Gervais is losing his comedic religion completely (or that, as some people claim, the real brains of the operation was Stephen Merchant all along), this movie might be it. I doubt that's true, but SC feeds that theory well. There are very few comedies (and I've seen hundreds) that manage to completely lose my interest after only 15 minutes or so, where it was a major chore to get through to the finish line, that moment of relief when the movie finally wraps up its dungation, then wipes itself, flushes, and then lets the viewer off into the sunset i.e. freedom.

Very ironically and amazingly, with the hindsight of having "seen" the movie in its entirety (I sort of saw the whole thing, kinda glanced at it now and again while doing other things, because it's literally impossible to watch all 100 min. of this unfunny, boring crap), it turns out that those first 15 minutes or so were the HIGHLIGHT of the movie. That section of the flick actually had a line or two that were solid, and the plot at that point still made some sense.

Made some sense, but not that much, either. For example, casting Farmiga as Gervais's wife is not only an example of embarrassing miscasting, but her character behaves in highly absurd and non-credible ways from the very moment she steps into the film. Her first conversations with Gervais are baffling, because not for one second can the viewer buy into this loony set-up that they really are husband and wife, and had been for years. They are a mismatch made in hell. Gervais plays a "loser", yet he has Farmiga as a wife: makes zero sense. Plus, given her ambitious nature and greediness, she should have left him ages ago, or more logical yet: she wouldn't have hooked up with him in the first place. This is just one in a series of idiocies, contradictions and inconsistencies within a script that insults the viewer's intelligence over and over.

What comes after the mediocre and increasingly dull first 15 minutes or so is the imbecile plot-twist (the movie's actual selling point!), a premise so illogical and preposterous that only a banal slapstick comedy or very infantile French farce could get away with it - perhaps. But SC is more akin to a satiric drama than an actual comedy, i.e. it plays around with the "real world" (or so its confused writers believe) way too closely to be able to get away with such nonsense.

Worse than all the shoddy logic and gazillion plot-holes is the failure of the comedy. The gags bomb wholesale, the dialog is as flat as Nicole Kidman's chest, and every additional plot-twist and event only serves to deepen the viewers' resentment toward themselves for picking this turkey in the first place. I will definitely NOT watch another Gervais film ever again, at least those made in this decade and onwards: so yes, hardship can teach a person some real life lessons.

Also, the very notion that the likes of CNN would bend the truth in favour of a right-wing agenda is mind-bogglingly stupid. Gervais either has a grasp of politics the way a child has a grasp of Civil Engineering, or he had sold himself lock stock and barrel to the current left-wing Establishment and the insane sociopaths who "run" it. Either way, one more reason to consider this one of the worst comedies of the century - and that really is saying a whole lot.

Gervais has become smug, lazy, unfocused and perhaps distracted by too many projects. Just guessing, though it essentially matters not. I am not really that interested in the reasons why SC sucks, just the fact does it DOES suck. His stand-up comeback "Humanity" is great, and that's what he should be doing more of, that's always been his biggest strength. Film-wise he is more miss than hit, and even his TV projects are becoming weaker.
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Where there's smoke there isn't necessarily fire.
23 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
What really sinks this semi-weird movie is the predictably disappointing ending that lets you down in every conceivable way. Most movies of this sort are good at build-up but suck at wrapping things up intelligently and neatly. (The David Lynch school of BS writing.) And that's what separates the men from the boys in cinema, the excellent mystery films from the mediocre ones. In fact, nothing is wrapped up; the conclusion is simply confusing, offering no answers at all: is he insane or not? was he cured?

If you're going to revolve the ENTIRE movie around a simple two-way dilemma (insanity or aliens, in this case), you'd better reward the viewer with SOMETHING, anything. But we get squat. Very lazy.

Pity, because a smart ending could have turned this into a well-made movie. Even cheesy hand-to-hand chop-sokey combat between some aliens and the two protagonists would have been better than what they gave us.

Or were they saving money on CGI?
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Shatner is in it, but that's no reason for panic.
23 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
The four stories interlap, but it's still an anthology film because they are mutually unrelated. Initially, I didn't know it was an anthology film which caused some small measure of frustration during the first half when it seemed that there were too many characters and sub-plots and that nothing made much sense. But the set-up is anyway not as good as the unfolding of the plots, so the film's strengths lie in the second half.

There are some nice plot-twists, with the weakest story being the teen ghost-team story, partly because it hasn't got much to do with Christmas, plus it's a far too standard ghost-possession story; still, that girl is awfully cute.

Let's see if you can figure out the wild but excellent plot-twist at the end. I doubt anyone could predict that. Not an absurd plot-twist either, which happens much too often in thrillers and horrors.
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Illogical, mostly uninteresting cash-grab from a director who just can't bother anymore.
23 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
So Begbie escapes from prison, but then just moves around Edinburgh free as a bird, as if the city is completely devoid of cops. And while making tons of enemies, it occurs to none of them to simply make a phone call to the authorities.

Hm, yes, a well thought-out script. Pity Boyle settled for the first draft. As so often.

A lazily cobbled-together script in the sloppiest Boyle fashion. It's as if he had the idea of doing a sequel on a Tuesday and had the first draft ready by Friday. That same Friday, not a Friday 15 fridays later as the more wise, conventional approach to film-making is. Because as a film-maker Boyle is an impulsive slob. He's got talent, but very little discipline with which to channel it properly. God only knows how he ever managed to write a good script that first time around, for the first junkie flick. Perhaps he got lucky, or maybe he was more hungry for success as a relative unknown hence more focused. Admittedly, it's also easier to start a story from scratch than to have to continue it 23 years later. Or is it the other way round?

Either way, the characters' motives are muddy, confusing, their actions often seem out of character, and the plot fairly wasteful with plenty of stuff that could easily have been cut out, because comedies should last 90 minutes, not the full two hours because they're not James Bond flicks.

One of the many plot-holes is the mysterious non-interest Renton and Simon show in the fact that Begbie is still out seeking revenge, and yet the two of them get caught off-guard by Begbie's extremely predictable second attempt at getting his revenge. So Renton didn't worry about Begbie after that close chase? That's the kind of writing geared toward more, how shall I put it diplomatically... "simply-arranged" viewers, not the kind of nonsense that can pass by the customs though of any half-way serious and/or experienced viewer. Yes, I'm bragging again, what the hell, it's The Age Of Brag, so I might as well join in. Yes, I'm too smart for this film.

And how about the Bulgarian hooker-with-the-heart-of-gold? What a dumb cliche that is, not a real person in the slightest, hence very dull. Not to mention the predictable betrayal she perpetrates that any viewer with half a brain-cell could foresee, which means I expect every single person to have predicted that "plot-twist" well in advance. Unless they were doing the same substances as these junkie goofball characters.

The movie has no spunk, it looks tired, just seems like a quick cash-grab by a director who figured that a half-attempt is more than enough when attached to a famous title. He may have been right, I don't know, haven't seen the box-office figures.

If you are quite content to watch badly scripted films - as long as they entertain you - feel free to give this a go. But then again, that's the other issue: it's not very entertaining, is it? I found myself fidgety through large chunks of the film, and that's sort of not what real entertainment is about.
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Anti Matter (2016)
In 100 years maybe NASA "scientists" will have their noses pierced. Until then...
23 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
A goth chick with a pierced nose works on the biggest scientific breakthrough in the history of mankind? I don't think so. These nose-pierced types are lucky if they get can add and subtract one-digit numbers. (With appy polly loggies to the smart Goth chicks that take out their pins and needles soon after clipping them on, and then re-join the human race.)

The entire movie is based on the premise, or at least the implication, that this amazing project needs to be tested on a human in order to get financial backers: fairly asinine. Already the disappearing act with marbles would have hundreds of companies and banks falling over each other trying to finance this. These kids would have been stinking rich way before the first human were to be teleported - and under much safer conditions.

Sure, there'd be no movie without this dumb premise - or perhaps there would? All the writer needed to do is get off his lazy derriere and come up with a credible way why the trio decide to take such a huge and unnecessary gamble. But instead he took the Hollywood route of treating the viewers like idiots. Or perhaps he really does believe that a scientific project that has successfully teleported mice and cats can't get financial backing?! For one thing, Putin would have had them all shot and stolen all their secrets - right after the first marble. (Obviously, he wouldn't have done it personally.)

Already those absurdities acted as strong hints early on that the film won't exactly win prizes for tight script-writing, because how can I trust such a klutzy writer to untangle the mystery in a logical, reasonable manner? I knew all along that whatever the explanation, it would leave many logic holes. It turned out I was right.

The ending isn't awful by any means, but does not explain the bizarre behaviour of the cops, nor does it explain that absurd, impossible chase after the masked intruder during which the main character defies all laws of physics and biology. (Those silly "Transporter" movies come to mind.) The less said about her boyfriend getting shot in the neck and just waltzing off back to the lab as if he just had a scratch, the better. If I watched the film again, I am convinced I'd find even more nonsense.

But what annoys me most is that the writer/director CHEATS the viewer blatantly by HIDING the real Ana from us until she comes out of the locked room - as if she'd been THERE all along. Now, that's really dumb.

The flip-side of that twist is that the revelation (that we were watching a sort-of-clone version of Ana) is thought-provoking and original (if perhaps already seen before if you read enough pulp fiction). Hipsters should love its "existential" themes. It just makes little sense from a logical viewpoint for us to only follow her adventures, and not those of the real Anna as well. You don't construct a clever mystery by withholding information from the viewer in such a brazen way.

Oh well, at least there's no cop-out non-ending such as we get in that amazing piece of hipster trash "Primer". That was a truly idiotic, boring movie devoid of a single redeeming quality. If you want a truly original and non-stupid indie sci-fi flick, "Coherence" is the way to go. (Independent film-makers have been the only hope of good, intelligent sci-fi for some years now, what with Hollywood having reached that Idiocratic Miley Cyrus stage where you can only expect amoeba-brained dross from them.)

Despite an OK first act and a solid conclusion, the film fails because the mystery section is way too long, offering no clues along the way. I'm all for an intriguing plot that baffles the viewer, but the plot - no matter how confusing - does actually have to move rather than stagnate. We literally know as much about Anna at the outset of the mystery as we do just before the conclusion, hence we have a bunch of needless scenes that appear to be pointlessly repetitious.

As for movie science, people sometimes nitpick way too much about the impossibility of certain things. Well, duh, that's why it's called sci-fi: it's meant to have impossible science, it's just a movie, not a dissertation for MIT. Sometimes I get the impression that science-focused nit-pickers want the science to be 100% fool-proof, as if film-makers have to ACTUALLY devise a REAL way of teleporting people in order for the script to be kosher enough! "Hey, the science is all wrong! They don't give us a real way to beam people to other dimensions!"

Recommended only for sci-fi freaks. Others will not be able to overlook the flaws with such ease.
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"Dear Diary, I am a moth and I am slightly horny."
23 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Some decrepit old ghost/vampire lady-thingy impersonating a sexy young dyevochka is really a moth, or actually 1000s of moths (we're made out of atoms, she of moths), and she is like really old and stuff and likes to kill young girls for fun and she's like such a filthy perv that she even sexually molests one of them, which is technically sex with a minor, right? But you can't arrest moths for sexual misconduct, can you. They'd just slip through the bars and then proceed to seek out new girls.

Anyway, Lily Cole Moth has her eye on killing Sarah Bolger Non-Moth - that's her ultimate goal, and one which Sarah figures out only at the end of the movie, way way way long after even the thickest of us thick viewers had already figured it out an hour earlier. So if Lily Moth wanted to kill Sarah all along, why did she wait so long and kill several people who aren't Sarah Bolger? No, Rachel Klein the author doesn't know and neither does Mary Harron the director. They don't bother to tell us WHY Lily came to that school to kill random people, nor why moths hate water (do they?), nor why moths are into same-sex activity. (If moths were inclined that way, wouldn't there be a LOT less of them?)

In fact, there's a strong whiff of lesb-ian*sm permeating the entire movie which makes me suspect that either the director or the author are leaning that way. They even portray the only hetero encounter in the movie - the actual inter-course - as painful and unpleasant.

And those of you who think that your patience will be rewarded with a grand finale Sarah vs Moth Lily, you're sadly mistaken, because Sarah sneaks up to Moth Lady real easy, sets her on fire, kills her, and that's pretty much it, and the whole movie was slow for no reason and it looked like a build up to a harrowing finale (which turned out to fizzle like a tiny firecracker) and quite predictable and Lily is far too tall for these small girls to be playing anyone but a ginger version of King Kong, and the make-up department should be hung for turning her into a brunette and giving her a goofy Goth-chick makeover - as if all mysterious vampire moth ladies are into Goth fashion - which made her look unattractive which is quite a feat because this actress is actually quite pretty (as is Sarah), and this movie is sort of like a stylized version of a les-b**n slasher flick and there's not much more else to say about this mediocrity.
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Plot-less flick with a mono-colour look. A good way to waste away 90 minutes.
23 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Do you tolerate style over substance? I don't. I prefer to have both. Why should I settle for just one? Breadcrumbs film-making is not for me. You wanna offer me breadcrumbs? Go stuff them up yer Thanksgiving turkey, don't want them. Because this story doesn't even give you semi-useful hints. It gives you breadcrumbs - and nail-clippings.

Not that this movie oozes with kubrickesque or coenesque buckets of style; far from it. But the movie is modestly stylish, does have a solid mood. What it lacks is a coherent plot. Actually, any plot. It lacks A plot. This is a script-based film? They could have fooled me. This looks almost improvised. Either that, or the script was being re-written ten times during the shooting, which rarely results in a good viewing.

If you know what this nonsense is about, let me know. I am open to all theories, especially dumb ones, because I can only expect dumb theories - considering that this movie is like an empty canvas open to all sorts of random subjective explanations. Doubtlessly fans of this movie enjoyed the film precisely because they injected their own plot into it.

As it is, all we have here is a barely les-bian romantic drama with vague characterization and a bunch of nonsense.

Gotta love the utterly idiotic political dross they threw in: "He (Reagan) is an evil man." Did they set this in the 80s just to be able to spit on Reagan's rock-solid reputation? Only people with zero understanding/knowledge of history can make such a claim. Why not go to the 00s then and give us a "Bush is evil" line? Or wait another year to see how the 2016 election turns out, and then include a "Trump is evil" scene? Even horror films can't do without SJW whining anymore. That kind of propaganda is all over the place, and unfortunately millennials are falling for it because they simply don't know better.

Coming from an evil witch, are we supposed to take this comment as a compliment for Reagan? Or maybe the point was that even an evil moth witch is less evil than Reagan/Bush/Trump? That's why politics has no place in fantasy, or just non-political films in general. Film-makers can stuff their exalted propaganda in the same smelly place where I suggested they stuff their breadcrumbs.
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Blood Money (II) (2017)
A thriller that will revolutionize the genre: no need for action, just let the characters jabber on and on and on.
23 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Dull movie with a clumsy plot that moves at a snail's pace. This is supposed to be a thriller about paranoia, right? Rather unexciting and drab for a "thriller". What helps a bit is the pretty exotic-looking female cast, one Danish-Algerian, the other English-Filipino.

Almost nothing happens in the first hour, not even the heist itself is shown (to save money, I suppose). But there is plenty of jabbering while the characters accuse each other of not being trustworthy. It's all rather weak and pointless. The acting isn't that great either.

Remind me again why SEVEN people are needed to steal a painting? It's not like they were stealing a ship. It's not even the Mona Lisa or anything remotely in that ballpark.

And if Eddie the killer was also involved somehow then WHY do they keep talking about splitting the money 5 instead of 6 ways once the guy gets shot by the guard? Can't this scriptwriter count?
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