Director: Michael Dougherty
Main Stars: Adam Scott, Toni Collette, David Koechner, Conchata Ferrell, Krista Stadler, Emjay Anthony, Stefania LaVie Owen, David Koechner
Storyline: A young boy wishes for things to be like old times for Christmas, Krampus grants his wish.
Review (Spoils): Young Max wants an old fashion Christmas and writes a note and it gets read out loud at the dysfunctional Christmas dinner. This prompts Krampus to appear that night and grant his wish. One by one the family Christmas gets ripped apart so that poor Max will be happy.
First off its spring why this film now? Well I have a young family I try my hardest to get this horror films in whenever I can. This film is like Gremlins meets Pumpkinhead with a nice touch of one liners and comedy. A nasty winter storm is background scenery of this film while we have hoofs, monster goblin elves, stabbing candy canes, creepy clowns, harpy angel dolls, killer teddy bears and the classic gingerbread men all on the hunt in the name of Krampus. Oh and of course the man himself in all his long tongue and massive horned glory. A nice chocking of Christmas lights and some interesting scenes as Krampus grabs the children one by one but do not expect a gore or blood drive in this one. the film had enough scenes that was action packed but was expecting a lot more of the horror.
Rating: This film was not as dark as I thought it was going to be. I was expecting more jumps and some red stuff but instead we had some character build, one liners, the beautiful Toni Collette and the best part of the film the killer gingerbread men. This could of used more blood….
Director: Lawrence Kasdan
Main Stars: Morgan Freeman, Thomas Jane, Jason Lee, Damien Lewis, Donnie Wahlberg
Storyline: A group of young men when camping discover that they are being plagued by a parasitic alien.
Review (Spoils): Ever year since they were kids a group of young men travel to Maine Woods. This year it just happens to be in the winter during a massive blizzard. They discover a man on his lonesome travelling and when they take him in for shelter they learn it is more than they bargained for. One by one they start to witness a parasite that is overtaking them.
Take the film Stand by Me and place a bit of The Thing in it and you have the formula for Dreamcatcher. You really cannot go wrong with that and with the list of actors in this film it is a good ride. We have a nice winter horror film with a nice touch of sci-fi and lots of blood and gore to cover the white. The monster itself is interesting you really do not have a full image of what it is (much like The Thing) which leaves lots for the imagination.
Rating: This is a great winter feel horror film outside the Christmas themes. The acting is well done and the scenery and music add to the film. We have enough red in the film and flash back character build that the film keeps you entertained. Its not everyday that you get a guys guy horror film without the fleeing scream queens.
Director: Jaume Balaguero
Main Stars: Anna Paquin, Lena Olin, Iain Glen
Storyline: A teenage girl and her family move into a remote country home and it is haunted
Review (Spoils): An old country house has a hidden old past of terror and is now claimed to be haunted. 40 years after that a family moves into the house with a new family. A young boy of the family starts to be frightened and starts to see things and act funny and drags his old sister into the worry. After investigation we learn of the 7 children hidden past of the house that is haunting it. We learn about the Darkness.
The film tries to take your basic haunting like film and uses other elements to the story of fright such as the mental issues of the father and the oddness of the son. The acting is well done and the star of the film Anna Paquin shines. The movie does not scream on the blood and gore but instead it works but sound and lighting which is a bit different then the generic haunting films we see nowadays.
Rating: The twist ending is a not a surprise and that part actuals downgrades the film. Yes, the film follows the normal formula for horror but what the director did to this film to present it is different and worth checking out. Plus it has Anna Paquin before she was really famous.
Wolf Creek 2 (2013)
Director: Greg McLean
Main Stars: John Jarratt, Ryan Corr, Shannon Ashlyn, Philippe Klaus
Storyline: Some backpackers run into Mick Taylor and he makes short work of them as he hunts them down.
Review (Spoils): We have a quick opening as the mood and setting of the outback film kicks in. We have Mick Taylor (John Jarratt ) back and being labeled (by the film) as one of the main reasons Australia is known for so many missing people. We start with a young German couple (Shannon Ashlyn, Philippe Klaus) who Mick runs into and he makes short work of them. This leads to another traveller (Ryan Corr) who happens to try to save the young girl but ends up being on Micks shit list also. Through all this we learn more and more about Mick Taylor and his madness.
Welcome back to Wolf Creek, we have chainsaws, lots of stabbings, a nasty beheading, some finger grinding, mind games, drinking and of course the famous one liners from Mick Taylor. The film opens with a classic scene of Mick Taylor and some cops who are trying to give him a speeding ticket. Great opening scene!
Rating: Mick Taylor is back and so is the torment and gore. The movie tries to bring some more depth to the madman but at times (the long winded song and drinking scene could have been cut in half) but overall the film is entertaining. Near the end the film reminded me a bit of Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 which is not a bad thing and I’m starting to enjoy Mick as a horror icon more. This is film is not for the weak of heart for gore and torture.
Kiss of the Tarantula (1976)
Director: Chris Munger
Main Stars: Suzanna Ling, Eric Mason, Rebecca Eddins, Susan Eddins
Storyline: A young woman has revenge on her peers with her pet tarantula’s
Review (Spoils): Susan’s favorite pets and friends were spiders since she was a young girl. Her mother never understood this and would punish her for it and kill them on sight. When Susan found out her mom was screwing around and planning to kill her dad she had her little pets go visit mommy at night.
Years later she is still close to spiders and when life throws her a curve ball she has revenge on them with her pets. We have lots of spiders, a spider on the face, on the head, lots on hands, a nasty head scene in a parked car, some drunks boys and a dirty old uncle. Suzanna Ling steals the show as grown up Susan!
Rating: I love classic 70s horror films and this one is no different. This was a fun film and the storyline was not bad. No over the top gore or blood in this one but just a nice creepy spider film with the lovely Suzanna Ling playing the main character.
House/ Hausu (1977)
Director: Nobuhiko Obayashi
Main Stars: Kimiko Ikegani, Miki Jinbo, Kumiko Ohba, Mieko Sato, Eriko Tanaka
Storyline: A group of schoolgirls spend the summer at one or their aunts and learn that the place is haunted.
Review (Spoils): The film starts with a group of schoolgirls that have strange names and they discuss what they are each doing for the summer. When all their plans fall though they lean to a young girl named Gorgeous to travel to her forgotten Aunt’s home for the summer vacation. Through the film we learn that each girl’s name is named after a personality trait of their own (learning this through the dialogue of character development). When the girls arrive to the aunt’s house they settle right in but what they don’t know is the aunt is actually dead and the place is haunted.
Ever take acid and watch a film? Me either unless it was a long time ago…well that is what this film feels like. I personal believe if you took drugs and watched this film it would make total sense or you would die from the special effects and weirdness of it. There is so much going on in this film (outside of story) that it is one big acid trip. We have cut out edits with the camera like it’s a sitcom, Asian schoolgirls, bad dialogue, blood, floating body parts, a piano that eats people, a light fixture that eats, weird background sceneries that would make Stg. Pepper make sense, a cat that spews blood and some sexual symbolism to top it.
Rating: This film is bad so bad that it was entertaining and I can understand why it’s a cult classic. Part of me wants to watch this film a second time but hammered. We have so much going on in the film and the characters alone are a trip on their own. Warning this film is not for everyone!
Return of the Living Dead 3 (1993)
Director: Brian Yuzna
Main Stars: Kent McCord, James T. Callahan, Sarah Douglas, Melinda Clarke, J. Trevor Edmond
Storyline: After seeing the experiment of bring the dead back to life a young man tries to do the same to his girlfriend who was killed in a motorcycle accident.
Review (Spoils): The government continue their experiments on the dead to come back to life for military uses. The colonel son named Curt (J. Trevor Edmond ) finds this out and he and his girlfriend Julie (Melinda Clarke) get involved in a motorcycle accident on the way home. Julie is pronounced dead so Curt takes her back to the lab and brings her back to life. What Curt learns is she is not fully the same woman that she was before the accident.
This film series had a rough go when the part 2 came out so I was not expecting a lot from this film. If you can get past the cheesie beginning this film is actually not bad. The film has character build and the gore is actually pretty damn good and over the top. This is a gory tale of true love and the Julie character is sexy but yet gory and deadly and she is definitely a memorable horror icon in my books. We have flesh eating, chewing, cool zombies, some drill scenes, the sexy zombie babe Melinda Clarke, some nasty cuts and of course the classic impaling scene.
Rating: This series has risen back to the ranks of the first film. I actually liked this film enough that I would place this into rotation in my horror collection. If you’re a horror fan and have not seen this film it is a must see at least once as it is a classic for the series.