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 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.
Director: Levan Gabriadze
Main Stars: Shelley Hennig, Heather Sossaman, Matthew Bohrer, Courtney Halverson, Moses Storm, Renee Olstead, Will Peltz, Jacob Wysocki
Storyline: A group of internet friends become haunted and threaten by a dead friend who wants revenge.
Review (Spoils): Laura thought she had the best friends in the world until the truth came out and she decided to take her own life. As her friends move on and start to chat as usual on the internet someone over takes their phone chat window and slowly starts to expose the truth. The ugly truth that they really are not all nice friends to each other. As the annoying screaming youngsters try to get rid of the snoop, secret messages and pictures start to appear on social media to freak them out.
So here is the low down of this loud and annoying film. The characters annoying me to hell and I was praying that the mystery killer would knock them off sooner and help me get over my hate. So much screaming, so much drama, so much how cares just sign off the fucking internet, go outside, and enjoy nature. The scary part of this film is that people care that much about social media. I will keep this in mind when my kids get older and I will explain to them the internet is full of trolls and what matters is what you feel inside not what is placed on a stupid website that a bunch of people nobody gives a shit about sees. (as I post this on a website LOL). Now get off my lawn!
This film has nothing but beeps, typing and some flashes of what could be gory and bloody. Which seems lacking and not making sense as it is not even possible the deaths (except the gun shot one). We have some blood, some shit, some media pictures, a blender, a curling iron, a gunshot and some messing screens. Nothing really wow here people.
Rating: Welcome to a movie where everyone deserves to die because they are whiny teenagers that think people care about them in the real world of the internet. Go outside and disconnect people occasionally. There is more to life then social media (anti-social to be true) but unfortunately, there is not to this film.
Insidious 3 (2015)
Director: Leigh Whannell
Main Stars: Dermot Mulroney, Stefanie Scott, Angus Samspon, Lin Shaye
Storyline: A prequel on the storyline where Elise Rainier uses her abilities to talk a dead mother for a young teenage girl.
Review (Spoils): Quinn (Stefanie Scott) is a young teenage girl who lost her mother and she wants to communicate with her. Therefore, she reaches out to psychic Elise Rainer (Lin Shaye) to help her with that. During which Rainer comes across the dark side of the after life and could not provide what Quinn was looking for. Quinn heads home, deals with normal teenage life, and is hit by a car. She dies in a way but is brought back to life. During which because she crossed over and messed with Rainer things start to go weird for her.
First off, I really dislike it when films think it is smart to go back in time for a sequel. This story really did not need to be told and I had an issue with that. Do not get me wrong the acting from both female leads Lin Shaye and Stefanie Scott was great but the film felt like it was a lighter side of Insidious tale. Mother and daughter bond was it too mushy for taste in a horror film.
Same story when it comes to graphics on this one, ghosts, dreams, red and black man, some spooky old man that cannot breath, the old lady in black and a motherly ghost that watches over her daughter. The coolest scene of the film was when Quinn smashes the casts off her legs.
Rating: This film be prepared to wait for something to happen. Excessively much story line on just the teenage girl and her drama of coping with the lost of her mother and having to pick up the slack. It drags on way to long for a horror film that belongs to series that is suppose to scare. This film was too predictable and too corny for my liking. I want creepiness and new types of scares at this day and age. This one is old hat.
Director: Mike Flanagan
Main Stars: Karen Gillan, Brenton Thwaites, Katee Sackoff, Annalise Basso, Garrett Ryan
Storyline: Family is torn apart by an evil haunting that follows an ancient mirror.
Review (Spoils): The Russell family move into a new home and everything is great for the family of four. The husband is a workaholic and locks himself in his ground floor office as his wife drinks to herself. The young kids pay and try and to survive as the family is slowly falling apart. However, it is a family affair that is happening or is there an evil woman ghost in the ancient mirror located in his office. The movie than moves to the future when the young kids are older and trying figure out if the mirror really is the issue or was it all in their minds.
As silly, it sounds above its not. The film plays back and forth on the current children after the fact of what happen and flashes from the past. The mirror becomes a focal point but at the same time, maybe it all really did not happen as they perceived or remembered. Lots of ghostly images and arguments on trying to solve the past with the siblings. The movie has some nice red blood, glowing eyes, some jump parts, nasty fingernails, swinging pikes and a really make you cringe lightbulb scene. Oh and really old black mirror that is possessed.
Rating: One way to explain this film is Butterfly Effect meets Amityville Horror. The acting in this film for the whole cast is really well done and I have to admit this film hooked me in once the siblings were arguing about what really happened. Something also about Karen Gillan is attractive and held my attention and her connection with her brother Brenton Thwaites was awesome. I do recommend this film and I was not disappointed by it.
Isle of the Dead (1945)
Director: Mark Robson
Main Stars: Boris Karloff, Ellen Drew, Marc Cramer, Katherine Emery
Storyline: On a Greek island during the war people are quarantined on the island due to a plague
Review (Spoils): During the war of 1912, people are trapped on an island located on the side of Greece. Legend and tales from a peasant woman is spread that there is a haunting presence of an undead spirit vampire known as the vorvolaka. The people on the island are told by the general (Boris Karloff) that they cannot leave due to a plague that is causing people to feel ill, weak and then slow death. The battle of legend and politics starts to happen between the people on the island as the sickness spreads. Does the faith in the goddess over power the tales of the spirit of evil.
The setting of this film is well done as it builds the backdrop of the war and the environment of the island. We have Boris Karloff not playing really the monster in this case but instead the hardheaded general who is trying to protect the people but at the same time contain the plague. Katherine Emery plays the part of the woman who fears of being buried alive which does come to terms within the film. Of course, we have the lovely Ellen Drew playing the lead woman who may or may not be a vorvolaka spirit.
Rating: This is actually not a bad film but there is something that is missing from the formula. Not sure if it was because they did not get into the details of the haunting evil spirit idea or it was lacking scares. Ellen Drew was great and of course so was Boris Karloff but something when it came to the horror of the tale was missing. Except of course, the scene of live person in a coffin scratching is a nice touch.