Lights Out (2016)
Director: David F. Sandberg
Main Stars: Teresa Palmer, Gabriel Bateman, Maria Bello, Alexander DiPersia, Alicia Vela-Bailey
Storyline: A family ghost known as Diana has come home to haunt the remaining family
Review (Spoils): Rebecca (Teresa Palmer) has been looking after her younger brother (Gabriel Bateman) as he has been lacking in sleep and the mother (Maria Bello) is off and on the deep end. As they try to dig deeper on what is bothering young Martin they learn that there is a connection to the mother Sophie and a long-lost entity known as Diana.
This film is basically a daughter who hates her mother and wants to prove that her mom is nuts along with a dark past of a ghost like demon known as Diana (Alicia Vela-Bailey) haunting the young boy. The film has some jumping scares, a deep scratchy voice ghost, some bites and claws marks, dark lights, no lights and a gun shot and lots of off the scene or too dark kills.
The movie has a lot of similarities to the film Session 9 to me. The story line starts feeling like a boogeyman type tale but than about half way through it starts to peel along to the root cause. The problem with this film is a couple items. No real blood or gore which could have been a nice little add and the second issue is spew of the history of Diana. Once again, a horror film spew too much info into the film within 15min of looking up a box in an attic.
Rating: This film was not bad to be honest it had a decent story line and looking at Maria Bello and Teresa Palmer was not hard either. The focus villain of Diana was an interesting touch and I can see this becoming a new horror icon of this era. Sure, the film felt rushed but overall it’s a nice little creepy tale.
Director: F. Javier Gutierrez
Main Stars: Matilsa Anna Ingrid Lutz, Alex Roe, Johnny Galecki, Vincent D’Onofrio, Aimee Teegarden, Bonnie Morgan
Storyline: A school study of the soul leads back to the tape and the history of Samara’s mother
Review (Spoils): The film opens with the storyline of Gabriel (big surprise on the name played by Johnny Galecki) talking students one by one to watch the tape so that he can the be shot of the discover of the soul. This leads the young Julia on a hunt for her missing boyfriend as he watched the tape. She confronts the teacher and a fellow student named Skye (Aimee Teegarden) and starts to learn that there is more to this than finding her boyfriend.
This film started off actually okay with the school storyline and the babe Aimee Teegarden but then it started to run off the rails as they hunt for the body of Evelyn, Samara’s mother. Once you get the point of priest so the movie runs into a sadness of boredom and no shit Sherlock! The idea was great at the beginning as it gave the series a bit of a Hellraiser type feel and then it just became another generic too much information on the history storyline. The marking on the hand also was a bit of stretch.
We have videotapes, electronic format now of the video, Samara, black wet hair, car wreck, some blood, screaming, a little okay scene of hair out of the mouth, Samara coming out of laptop and of course lots of flashy scenes of the video. Not much on the scares as a lot of it has been done before.
Rating: Like stated above this film had a great idea and storyline and then it went lazy. It took the easy way out and started to tell a tale that nobody really gives a rat ass about. Whole series has been around Samara we do not need a huge storyline why her mother treated her like crap and killed her. Plus, you killed Aimee Teegarden near the beginning of the film. Eye candy gone and shitty change in storyline makes this film lacking.
The Girl in the Photographs (2015)
Director: Nick Simon
Main Stars: Kal Pen, Claudia Lee, Kenny Wormald, Luke Baines, Toby Hemingway, Miranda Rae Mayo, Katharine Isabelle, Autumn Kendrick
Storyline: A young woman in a small town is bothered by some Hollywood people and at the same time she is dragged and stalked by someone who loves to leave pictures of dead girls for her.
Review (Spoils): Colleen (Claudia Lee) and her bitchy attitude is stuck in a dead-end town with no where to go. She starts to find pictures of dead girls and brings it to the police. They knock it off as just someone messing around and being artistic. At the same time photographer Peter Hemmings (Kal Pen) is coming to town to figure out how he can cash in on this fad. When is group of merry men/women showed up Colleen gets dragged into it. One by one people close to Collen start to disappear and the pictures keep growing.
This film brings some eeriness to the screen as the annoying Colleen starts to become stalked by people in some white masks. Sure, the film screams a bit of copycat of the film The Strangers but non- the less I was entertained. As you can tell Claudia Lee annoyed the hell of me for this film and almost ruined it for me. But on the other hand, Kal Pen was very entertaining and so was his whole crew of models and celebs. A big part of me wanted to see Claudia Lee to meet her end and have someone like the hot babe Autumn Kendrick win!
The film brings on some blood and some nasty kills like stabs, slashes, choking, some white masks, lots of camera flashing, nice cage, some nakedness of Autumn Kendrick (right on!), sarcasm of Kal Pen and the bitchiness of Claudia Lee’s character.
Rating: To be honest I did not mind this film and do not understand the bad reviews. Outside of Claudia Lee I liked this film. Its pace was well played and I really did enjoy the Peter Hemmings character as it made me laugh a few times once the character breaks the ice. Luke Baines played an villain that I did find enjoyable and creepy. Not an amazing horror film but still worth the time as it was a bloody okay time.
The Devil’s Dolls (2016)
Director: Padraig Reynolds
Main Stars: Christopher Wiehl, Kym Jackson, Tina Lifford, Samantha Smith, Yohance Myles, Kennedy Brice, Brea Grant, Naomi Kyle, Matty Ferraro
Storyline: A bunch of straw dolls when worn cause people to go insane and be possessed.
Review (Spoils): Serial Killer Henry (Matty Ferraro) has been the main target for detective Matt (Christopher Wiehl). The day finally comes when they catch him and shoot him down. But just when Matt wants to celebrate and meet his daughter (Kennedy Brice) it is about to start all over again. His daughter grabs a box filled with little straw dolls that once was possessed by Henry. She takes the dolls and uses them for her own creations of necklaces to sell. All hell breaks loose and people start killing each other in possessive gruesome ways.
Yes, the storyline seems lame, but this film actual was an okay ride. The opening scene is a classic when it comes to gore and blood. When Henry cuts loose and does the chase down with a massive long drill bit I gave myself the “holy shit this is going to rock”. This film is not lacking on blood and gore which is the reason why I kind of enjoyed this film. It was not done with cheesy computer graphics and gone old school. We have little dolls, some green skin demon faces, blank eyes, the nasty drill scene to the head, throat slits, a fire burning body, nasty knives and even garden shears (nice ode to The Burning) and a dog kill.
Okay now time for the downside of this film. Man, the acting was lacking from the main cast. The daughter was annoying and I really could not care about her well being. The mother was just as bad and I just wanted to see her die. The main character Matt was ok as I could relate in a way but the cast over all was hit and miss. The second downfall of the film was the whole voodoo queen storyline and scene. This should have been edited out and the movie would have done well on its own without all this detail of crap. If they would have taken all that crap out and left it as Henry’s creepy dolls are causing people to go nuts and create some gruesome deaths this would have been higher on my list.
Rating: This film was not as bad as some of the reviews I have read. You have not seen enough crap horror films people. The blood and gore in this film alone was worth a good amount of pints. Sure, the acting was boring in parts but the opening scene and the scene where her friend gets hunted down by her husband was worth the viewing alone. Plus we have Brea Grant and Naomi Kyle!
Director: Danny Perez
Main Stars: Natasha Lyonne, Chloe Sevigny, Meg Tilly, Mark Webber, Maxwell McCabe-Lokos
Storyline: A struggling drug addicted wakes up from a night of party with a strange illness.
Review (Spoils): Lou (Natasha Lyonne) is a struggling drug addict and hangs around mostly with street walkers and drug addicts. After a wild of night of partying and not remembering she and her friends Sadie (Chloe Sevigny) try to find out why she has been feeling so strange. Is she pregnant or is there something more wrong happening? After possibly being pregnant, struggling with body changes, mind trips and of course indulging in drugs and booze Lou life starts to spin. Also, to add to the mix the wandering Lorna (Meg Tilly) who seems to know too much comes to her door and the truth starts to unfold.
This film is a bit of trip itself. Not sure if it was the drugs, the use of red and purple lighting, the rubber baby monster or the fuzzy fun zone apes but man this film was all over the place. The storyline jumps right in but it was slow run to get to the point. Some of the graphic were nice and gross like the belly, the classic foot scene and the picking of skin but there were long gapes of just conversation in between that it seemed longer than it should have been. Natasha Lyonne and Chloe Sevigny did a great job playing out their characters but I hard time getting into Meg Tilly’s. It just lacked info or backstory. There could have been more scares and gore , hell even more fuzzy apes would be fun!
Rating: Overall the film was okay and entertaining. Chloe Sevigny is a joy to watch and Natasha Lyonne always plays a good junkie (Orange is the New Black). The ending felt a bit rushed as there was much going on in the final 20min and it was a bit cheesy, but overall the film was not bad. I was expecting a lot worse but they could of cut down on the dialogue and gave us more trippy apes.
The Final Girl (2015)
Director: Tyler Shields
Main Stars: Abigail Breslin, Wes Bentley, Logan Huffman, Cameron Bright, Alexander Ludwig, Reece Thomspson, Francesca Eastwood
Storyline: A young girl is taken to be modeled as a killer to help revenge the death of a wife and child.
Review (Spoils): Young Veronica (Abigail Breslin) is taken and trained to be a killer so that she can help avenge a death of William’s (Wes Bentley) family. We learn that there is a group of young gentlemen that have some serious mental issues that gather every once in awhile and hunt down young girls in the woods. So, William setups up Veronica to stop them as becoming the final girl.
I have read some bad reviews of this film but to be honest I enjoyed it and liked that it was not heavy on development and plot. Yes, the plot is very simple but I like the unknown about it and it just ended which is great. This film is what it is, young boys trying to hunt down a girl that they do not know if a trained killer herself. The boys each have their personality and small background that is not complicated in story. Perfect!
The film is lacking in gore and blood which okay that could have been better but overall the film is made of the following: woods, baseball bats, axes, drugs, hanging and a nice rock smash. The film can be pretty dark or over shadowed during the kills but it is entertaining non- the less.
Rating: At first, I was not sure if I enjoyed Abigail Breslin as to me she does not look great as a yellowed haired blond. But as we made our way to the woods the character kind of grew on me. The film does have a Funny Games feel to it but I do enjoy my woman revenge films so this one suckered me in. I personally hope they stay away from a sequel and just the film as it is.
The Forest (2016)
Director: Jason Zada
Main Stars: Natalie Dormer, Eoin Macken, Stephanie Vogt
Storyline: A woman goes to Japan to find her lost twin sister and enters a forest that is known as Suicide Forest.
Review (Spoils): Sara and Jess Price has a tough childhood after their parent’s death. Jess witnessed it and Sara turned away. One of the twins became dark as the other became lighter. When Jess disappears her sister, Sara decides to travel to Japan to find her and tracks lead to the Suicide Forest.
The forest is kind of lacking its has some backstory and flashbacks and the basic don’t stay in the woods after the night or you will see things and die. Or also the lame don’t walk off the path hint. The movie itself was not horrible and Natalie Dormer is entertaining but there were not enough scares (or any) and the fall in a hole and flips back and forth was kind of known what was really happening. This film was predictable and dragged on to long to get to the actual whole point of the film.
We have green forests, dark forest, a hole (surprise) some back and forth on what is real and what is not. Of course haunting children, some blood and a nasty hand wound, stabbing and drama that really I could not care about. Why would a twin sister who could not give a shit about her sister all of sudden give a shit because she may dead..??? Sounds pretty lame to me.
Rating: When two strangers become best friends over night and exposes their darkest secrets within 4 hours I call bullshit. And this is what exactly this film did and they lost me after that. (which was half through the film). The forest had some great scenery but the frights were not there. But if you like looking at Natalie Dormer you will be ok for the 1.5 hours.