The Gate (1987)
Director: Tibor Takacs
Main Stars: Stephen Doff, Christa Denton, Louis Tripp, Kelly Rowan, Jennifer Irwin
Storyline: Some crazy nerds find a geode under an old tree and open a gate to Hell.
Review (Spoils): A tree gets removed from a young boy backyard to the discovery of a geode. Glen (Stephen Doff) and his friend Terry (Louis Tripp) break it open and weird shit starts to happen. They believe that the hole that the geode is a gateway to Hell so they use heavy metal lyrics and some dead dog as a sacrifice to close the gate. But they are wrong they did the opposite!
We have moths, bad special effects of little creatures, some bible reading, demons, some Barbie doll stabbing, gun shots and lots of 80s cheese.
Rating: Don’t expect much from this film, it sits as a classic for the cheesy horror of the 80s and that’s where it should be. We have some bad metal (a thing of which people like to pretend was devil music in the 80s), some nerds, typical 80s teen party and a house being trashed by little and huge demons. Throw in some bad storylines of good vs evil and there you have it…. The Gate.
The Sentinel (1977)
Director: Michael Winner
Main Stars: Cristina Raines, Ava Gardner, Chris Sarandon, Beverly D’Angelo
Storyline: A young model moves into an apartment that seems to be haunted by some unholy presence.
Review (Spoils): Young fashion model Alison Parker (Cristina Raines) lives with her lawyer boyfriend Michael Lerman but is a little unstable. She has attempted suicide a few times once when she was a teenager and again later on in her life. She has forgotten and left Christ behind in her hard times. She feels she is not ready for marriage under the pressure so she moves into an apartment of her own. She gets comfortable with it even though she has a blind priest that lives below, a man who celebrates birthdays for his cat and of course visions of people who are really dead.
The apartment that is not what it seems or at least not the atmosphere anyways. The film plays off of the Catholic beliefs and brings that eerie 70s horror onto the screen. I personally love this stuff and the scenery is well done and for a haunting occult type film this one is a gem sitting close to The Amityville Horror or The Exorcist. Many claim this film is to be pro Catholic but I’m not totally convinced of this as I think it plays more on which using religion to bring out the horror.
Rating: Want a great 70s haunting film check this one out. It is a hidden gem that many do not know about. Cristina Raines is awesome and so Beverly D’Angelo, great acting all around. The special effects are right up there and the film is actually chilling. This is a must see for horror fans.
The Ugly (1997)
Country: New Zealand
Director: Scott Reynolds
Main Stars: Paolo Rotondo, Paul Glover, Christopher Graham, Darien Takle, Rebecca Hobbs
Storyline: A female psychologist wants to understand the mind of a serial killer.
Review (Spoils): Dr. Karen Shoemaker (Rebecca Hobbs) starts to interview a twisted minded serial killer known as Simon (Paolo Rotondo) who is unfit for trial. She wants to prove to the world that she can cure is mixed up mind. But Simon is one charming man and uses that to bring forth his twisted past and the dark feelings in his mind to Karen. Simon pours it all forth and makes Karen wish never took on such a task.
The movie plays on the two main characters trying to outsmart or charm the other. This opens to Rebecca Hobbs in seductive way to trying to prove that pretty boy Simon is alright in the head and he makes her believe that. Then it all gets unleashed in flashbacks, black blood and dream like demon sequences. Don’t expect a slasher type feel film with this but more of Hellraiser type trip of a film. The movie is pretty decent for what it is and if you can let the reality go its a fun ride.
Rating: Many people do not get this film, but I do and I actually very much enjoyed it. I like a good trippy mind fuck film and this is one. Sure we learn about “The Ugly” that lurks in the killers head but the connection between the two characters has almost a Candyman type feel and I drink to that. Well done by Rebecca Hobbs and Paolo Rotondo even if the ending can be a bit too much.
Wrong Turn 4 (2011)
Director: Declan O’Brien
Main Stars: Jennifer Pudavick, Tenika Davis, Kaitlyn Leeb, Terra Vnesa, Ali Tatryn, Samantha Kendrick
Storyline: Some young people get lost when snowmobiling and end up at the asylum of the cannibal killers.
Review (Spoils): The cannibals over take the sanatorium in which they are being held. They eat and kill everyone including inmates and now live in the building. Its winter time and some babes and the odd boyfriend head out snowmobiling on their winter break but end up getting lost. They end up at the sanatorium for shelter and before you know it they are banging, drinking, dancing and watching old asylum films for fun. Well not for long as the cannibals start to eat and kill of each one ..one by one.
We have lots of red blood, a mean drill that is a gorger, barb wire lots of it, beheadings, some lesbian love scenes, babes, some hand chopping, some skinning and a stupid death under a ski-do.
Rating: What do I like better then red blood on snow in a film, one that is filled with babes. Sure the film is kind of lame (like the decisions not to kill them all when they have them captured) but the film is worth it just for Jennifer Pudavic, Ali Tatryn and Samantha Kendrick, hell they are all hot. Sure this film is not as decent as The Descent but you get the idea. What saved the film was the over the top blood and the hotties. Grab some beers, some Kleenex and enjoy this bloody mess of a film (don’t forget the corn chips).
Wrong Turn 3 (2009)
Director: Declan O’Brien
Main Stars: Tom Frederic, Janet Montgomery
Storyline: A bus crashes when transfer convicts in the forest of the hillbilly lands.
Review (Spoils): We have a group of teens who get stranded after a rafting trip and the cannibal hillbillies, all get killed off but the beautiful Janet (Janet Montgomery) who runs for her life until she comes across a group of convicts in the same situation. They come across an old armor van filled with money which makes the prisoners want to survive and then they start to turn on each other out on greed. At one point they capture the son if one of the cannibals and behead him, and place his head out as trophy (which pisses them even more off).
We have blood, gore, meat hooks, gun shots, and scalping, hanging and some shooting arrows. The cannibal hillbillies are limited in this one and so are the bad special effects.
Rating: This series has gone down the tubes with this entry. The acting horrid, the movie is silly and the CGI is painful. From what was a great return to the classic 70s horror feel (the first one) is now an embarrassment to horror when it comes to long winded series.
Savage Harvest (1994)
Director: Eric Stanze
Main Stars: Lisa Morrison, Ramona Midgett, William Clifton
Storyline: A land that was once the land of the Cherokee people is now haunted by a demon presence.
Review (Spoils): What happens when the history of the Cherokee people is mixed at war with demons and time passes? Six young horrible actors gets trapped in this mess and try to find out the riddle of the demon possessions, some funky rocks, nasty transformations and some good ol’ blood in the soil.
The film is slow I will give it that but once you get into the 30min mark the point of horror starts to show. This is a very low budget film (I have no issues with that) with long dialogue which kind of kills it. The acting is not great but then again it has no budget. But the gore and special effects are actual pretty decent which kid of saved the film.
Rating: This is a typical Eric Stanze film, not the greatest of his works and not the worse either. Don’t expect babes, great plot or prime acting just some decent gore along the lines of Demons.
Quarantine 2 (2011)
Director: John Pogue
Main Stars: Mercedes Mason, Josh Cooke, Mattie Liptak, Bre Blair, Noree Victoria
Storyline: The virus is spread upon a plane in mid flight.
Review (Spoils): While the first film is happening a flight in LA (same area) is flying out to Kansas City and boarding passengers. One of the passengers brings on a hamster in a cage and it bites a passenger and then the virus begins. The virus overtakes passengers and flight attendants and crew one by one and the unaffected must work to together to survive.
This film runs along the same lines as the first one and has total pulled away from the original series [REC]. Now this a bad thing? Actually no its not. We have a fun ride actually; puking, vomiting, blood, some nasty biting, gun shots and the very attractive Jenny (Mercedes Mason). The film is very fast pace once it gets going and it glues the first film into this one which tries to make it all make sense.
Rating: I’m going to be honest, I actually enjoy this film more than the first one for a few simple reasons. It was not a remake of [REC 2] and main lead Mercedes Mason made it worth watching as she races through all the scenarios. I hope this is the last of this series as the [REC] series is way better and they do not try to drag this to Vegas. Worth watch as nothing lacking with virus zombies on a plane!