Archive for the Halloween Horror Movie Marathon Category

The Seventh Annual Halloween Horror Movie Marathon Begins!

Posted in Found Footage, Halloween Horror Movie Marathon on September 15, 2016 by Justin T.

halloween-1350375283oewIs it that time of year already? Is that the rumble of a passing truck I hear or is it the low growl of some hideous monstrosity from the underworld? Do I hear the paws of indescribable beasts padding on the ground outside my window? Is that a thin, pale hand clutching at the gates? Am I seeing things or is that gleam in the dark emanating from the eyes of some ancient spirit come to clutch at my soul?

Halloween is coming! The first two weeks of September have already sped on by and here I silently sit, terrified by the sounds of unnatural monsters and wailing wraiths. One of those creatures has just hopped out of its crib… er, cage… and is quickly stomping its way to my door, which I know will be flung open in a rage to be followed by the shrill screams and cries of a mad demon. Never has the word “Daddy” stricken such terror in my heart until it has come from the slavering mouth of this tiny hellion.

Never mind that now. As it frantically pounds its fists on my door, I must chant the incantations that begin the Halloween Horror Movie Marathon season. Once again I neglected a wrap up post to cap off the previous year and so sacrifices must be made…

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The Final Six of 2015

Posted in Halloween Horror Movie Marathon on November 16, 2015 by Justin T.

Time barreled on by like the midnight meat train… there’s about a half dozen films I’ve seen since The Nightmare and it’s time I get write-ups done and posted. Here goes, the final stretch of my Halloween Horror Movie Marathon for 2015. Let’s get through these quickly…

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The Nightmare

Posted in Halloween Horror Movie Marathon on November 7, 2015 by Justin T.

The Nightmare

The Nightmare (2015) — Directed by Rodney Ascher. Starring Siegfried Peters, Steven Yvette, Yatoya Toy, Nicole Bosworth, Elise Robson, Age Wilson.

The Nightmare grabbed my attention after seeing a trailer for it earlier this year. The premise of this new documentary from Rodney Ascher, director of Room 237, is simple– several people who suffer from sleep paralysis describe their experiences while we watch recreations of their descriptions. The concept and the chilling imagery intrigued me. It looked like it could be a frightening little flick. When it recently appeared on Netflix I moved it to the top of my list.

If you’ve never heard of it, sleep paralysis is an inability to move while a person is drifting off to sleep or waking up. It is often accompanied by specific types of hallucinations, typically of someone or something sitting on your chest or a shadowy figure lurking in the room. It’s a pretty interesting phenomenon to read up on or, you know, watch a documentary about.

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The Black Scorpion

Posted in Halloween Horror Movie Marathon on October 21, 2015 by Justin T.

The Black Scorpion

The Black Scorpion (1957) — Directed by Edward Ludwig. Starring Richard Denning, Mara Corday, Carlos Rivas, Mario Navarro, Carlos Múzquiz, Pedro Galván, Pascual García Peña.

I loved monster movies as a kid. Aw, heck, I still do. You might think it’s all about seeing people picked up by giant claws and devoured by a gigantic creature or buildings smashed to pieces by enormous feet, which is a lot of fun, but for me it’s just as much about seeing things brought to life that don’t exist in the real world, someone’s imagination realized on film. I remember watching the original King Kong, captivated by Kong and the dinosaurs even on my parents’ tiny black and white TV. I marveled at Ray Harryhausen’s Cyclops in The Seventh Voyage of Sinbad. Later I would be terrified of Medusa’s green gaze in Clash of the Titans; I almost couldn’t look at the screen, convinced I would turn to stone just by catching a glimpse of her eyes. Stop motion animation, particularly in older films, may look hokey if you didn’t grow up on it but I still love the craft. The patience and attention to detail required to simply walk a model across the screen still blows me away. We still see stop motion in current films but the trend is more towards animating an entire movie instead of integrating models with real actors and locations. I look forward to sharing these old classics with my sons at an age where they can be as dazzled by them as I was. Unfortunately The Black Scorpion, though featuring some impressive animation by one of the pioneers of the craft, isn’t one of the best examples of this dying art form.

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‘The Visit’

Posted in Found Footage, Halloween Horror Movie Marathon on October 7, 2015 by Justin T.

The Visit

The Visit (2015) — Directed by M. Night Shyamalan. Starring Olivia DeJonge, Ed Oxenbould, Kathryn Hahn, Deanna Dunagan, Peter McRobbie, Benjamin Kanes, Celia Keenan-Bolger.

M. Night Shyamalan is back! After taking a steep nose dive with some truly lousy movies that incorporated lame twists (The Village), spoiled brat whining about film critics (Lady in the Water), and just plain ridiculousness (The Happening), he has returned with The Visit, a found footage thriller/horror film that seems to work pretty well on the surface. After taking a closer look, however, I have some concerns with how the film exploits dementia in the elderly for its scares.

Siblings Rebecca (Olivia DeJonge) and Tyler (Ed Oxenbould) are heading out for a week-long visit with their grandparents, Nana (Deanna Dunagan) and Pop-Pop (Peter McRobbie). The kids have never met them because their mother Paula (Kathryn Hahn), after leaving home during some tense family drama, has been estranged from them for the past fifteen years. Rebecca, a budding filmmaker, is eager to meet them and plans to make a documentary of their visit with the goal of initiating a reconciliation between her mother and grandparents. But as their visit begins they notice some odd behavior. Nana has mood swings and wanders around the house after bedtime doing strange things like projectile vomiting and scratching at the walls. Their mother, via Skype, brushes these incidents off as simple old people behavior but things gradually become more deranged and sinister. What is going on with Nana and Pop-Pop? Why are they so damned scary?

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‘The Green Inferno’

Posted in Found Footage, Halloween Horror Movie Marathon on October 5, 2015 by Justin T.

The Green Inferno

The Green Inferno (2013) — Directed by Eli Roth. Starring Lorenza Izzo, Ariel Levy, Aaron Burns, Kirby Bliss Blanton, Magda Apanowicz, Ignacia Allamand, Daryl Sabara, Nicolás Martínez, Sky Ferreira, Ramón Llao, Antonieta Pari.

Feel like going on a trip? Eli Roth thinks you’re better off at home. Cabins in the woods, Eastern Europe, and now the Amazonian jungle have all come under his scrutiny and the world he sees is dangerously unaccommodating to outsiders. Woe to you, oh traveler, who wanders this wicked world!

Columbia University freshman Justine (Lorenza Izzo, Eli Roth’s wife) doesn’t care if her dorm mate Kaycee (Sky Ferreira) snarkily proclaims “activism is so f**king gay”, she joins a campus activist group anyway. The group’s leader, Alejandro (Ariel Levy), sees her father’s connection to the UN as a vital piece in his plan to save an Amazonian tribe in Peru threatened by deforestation carried out by a company mining fuel in the area. The activists aim to halt the company’s progress by chaining themselves to the demolition equipment and streaming the protest online via their smart phones. They succeed surprisingly quickly, though there is a dubious reason for that, and while celebrating on the small plane taking them out of the Amazon, an engine explodes and the plane crashes… wouldn’t you know it, right next to the tribe they were trying to save. And they’re just in time for dinner! You can probably guess who is on the menu…

The Green Inferno is Eli Roth’s tribute to cannibal films of the kind that flourished in the 70s and 80s, peaking with Ruggero Deodato’s controversial Cannibal Holocaust. If you want to get caught up you can go through the filmography presented near the end credits of Inferno and then see how this one compares. The Green Inferno is the highest profile cannibal film in some time. The only other cannibal film I’ve seen is the infamous Cannibal Holocaust so I don’t have much to compare it to but as an exploitation/horror film in general, The Green Inferno held my interest but wasn’t all that impressive.

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‘Bad Biology’

Posted in Halloween Horror Movie Marathon on September 29, 2015 by Justin T.

Bad Biology

Bad Biology (2008) — Directed by Frank Henenlotter. Starring Charlee Danielson, Anthony Sneed, ‘Rude’ Jude Angelini, Eleonore Hendricks, Vinnie Paz, Reef the Lost Cause, Bjorn Milz, Vicky Wiese, J-Zone, Remedy, Tina Krause, Jelena Jensen, James Glickenhaus.

If you’re put off by a movie that opens with the main character stating, “I was born with seven clits”, or the other main character later exclaiming, “I got a drug-addicted dick with a mind of its own!” then you might want to skip this movie, and this review. But if you’re up for a movie that takes you on a campy ride through the world of a pair of sexually mutated human beings, then you must check out Frank Henenlotter’s Bad Biology.

Jennifer (Charlee Danielson) is a woman with seven clitorises, that she knows of, who feeds on sex like it’s food. Her metabolism, perhaps working to support a sex drive accelerated by her seven clits, operates so quickly that not only does she have to wolf food down like an animal after every sexual encounter, she also conceives, gestates, and gives birth to what she calls “fake, unfinished freak babies” two hours after copulating. During her quest to find men that satisfy her intensely advanced libido, she often kills her mate during climax. “Oops.”

Is there anyone who can fulfill her freakishly insatiable needs? Enter Batz (Anthony Sneed), a man who is a slave to the ravenous sex drive of an enormous, sentient (though mute) penis. The two foot long dick is addicted to steroids, literally slurping down liquid drugs like a child drinking a milkshake. Poor Batz does not enjoy being controlled by his drug-addicted penis but he goes to great lengths to satisfy its enormous cravings. What will happen when our twisted pair of sexual misfits finally cross paths?

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