We review up and comming horror movies so you don't waste your time and money on utter crap.

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Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Haunted Highway


Rating: R
Theater: N/A
DVD: August 8, 2006
Runtime: 85 minutes
So I really liked this movie. A lot. My boyfriend...not sure how much he liked it but it was really good. Now the plot is there is this guy Greg who is cheating on his wife Amanda with a Japanese super-model Yumi. Amanda finds out and Greg and her have a fight and he ends up accidentally killing her. That is the first 4 minutes. Then about a minute of cleaning up the body and then it is time for him to hit the road to dump the body! And for the next hour and 20 min it is Greg in the car driving (with intermittent flashbacks that explain what little background we need to know)!

Okay so that might not sound exciting, but he is on the haunted highway. He keeps running into his dead wife's' corpse walking around. And Yumi shows up saying how she knows everything and she saw what he did. He has to make it 90 miles to this place called Black Lake to dump Amanda. It is what she would have wanted. It was where Greg and Amanda got married (and also Greg and Yumi's special place....so maybe they can all be dumped in the lake when they die and live happily ever after. Although this movie did make me think, where would I want my body dumped if someone accidentally killed me? It is like having a will and such. You want to make sure it is a good place right? A special place.....I will have to think about that now).

Now, this movie is great because there are tons of shots of Greg pressing the gas pedal or putting on the brakes, and you get to see the dials move on the dashboard and the wheels turning on the car. It is pretty exciting. And lots of rear view mirror action. And of course the shots through the windshield of the landscape going by. It is pretty good.

So why did I like this movie so much? It is just a guy driving to the lake to dump a body. That is basically the entire movie! It reminded me a lot of Duel. I loved that movie as well. Well let's be honest I haven't seen Duel in forever, but I remember it basically being just the guy in his car being chased by the crazy truck driver. Lots of footage of the guy in the car, looking in the rear-view mirror and all. And I loved it. And that is what this movie gave you. A guy driving down the road in his car. The acting is....not very good, but definitely not the worst I have seen. Greg just over does it a little. For example the huge dramatic wiping off of his forehead when he narrowly escapes something. Yeah it is good.

There are a lot of great scenes in this movie. For instance there is one scene where Greg runs out of gas. Well a cop shows up and gives him some. Now Greg was just in his trunk to look at his dead wife's body and he was just going to put her in the woods since he couldn't make it to the lake, but the cop showed up and he slammed the trunk. Well the cop gets very worried since there was a piece of fabric hanging out. I mean the trunk could fly open at any moment and cause an accident. And when it does later in the movie it is quite amazing. I mean I don't know if you have ever had your trunk fly open but it is pretty... uneventful probably. It is your trunk... But the cop was worried and it made me laugh.

But my favorite scene was when Greg runs into Amanda's ghost or corpse or whatever it is. She is standing in the middle of the road and he has just passed her around the corner. She comes over and knocks on his window and says 'my car just broke down I need a ride.' It is probably the best acting in the entire movie. He is all, "didn't I just see you back there?" and she is all, "yeah and you didn't stop! Jerk." Too bad the wife is the one that died, as the actor who played Yumi was awful. Really the way she talked was just awful.

I'll be honest, this movie is really not scary at all and not really shocking or anything just a blah movie about a guy in a car. But if that is what you want, you will not be disappointed in this movie. I thought a great sequel would be Greg driving back from the lake to kill Yumi since she knows too much. Then the third in the trilogy would be Greg driving back out to the lake to dump Yumi's body! I would watch those movies for sure! Too bad they wrapped it all up in this one movie. What were they thinking not leaving room for a sequel?!

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Monday, June 12, 2006

Maid of Honor



Rating: NR
Theater: N/A
DVD: June 6, 2006
Runtime: 94 minutes
Okay so this movie was blah. I mean I watched it the whole way through and enjoyed it for the most part (oh alright you got me. I kinda stopped paying full attention part way through, but whatever. I still got the jist of it). So it is this movie about this lady Laci who lives with her brother-in-law Richard and his two kids, Danny (played by Steven McPhail- now that kid is one excellent actor....) and Molly after their mother (Laci's sister) got killed in a car accident. She has been happy and the movie opens with this really touching we love you Laci! scene (okay not really. The acting is aweful and well....it doesn't seem like they really like her but hey, I can pretend).

SO everything is fine until.....Richard decides to marry Nicole! What?!? How could she? I mean obviously Laci loves him. So she tries to get Danny on her side as she tells him mean things about Nicole. Yeah then the rest of the movie till the last 5 minutes is Laci not being able to deal with the whole wedding thing and trying to stop it (finally resorting to trying to kill Nicole while Richard is out of town). So it is just people saying Nicoles name or mentioning the wedding and Laci looking all: Ehhh I cannot take this...eehhh...(kinda looking like she has a headache or something.....maybe a little crying.....it is pretty lame. But most enjoyable at the same time).

The end is pretty good as well. And by pretty good I mean really lame, so I liked that a lot. I mean there is a super super lame fight between Nicole and Laci (now didn't want to ruin anything for those of you who may see this movie-or may have caught it when they showed it on Lifetime-if I would have know that first I prbably would have skipped it...oh well-but Laci throws her purse in the river after she goes really insane. Well they found the purse. That must mean she threw herself in right? I mean she has to be dead right? Wrong! And man was that a shocker.....) So yeah. If you want no action, no killing really (well, there is one suprise kill in there), no anything except Laci acting weird when the wedding is mentioned, well then this is your movie. But get used to this face: you will be seeing a lot of it.

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Saturday, May 13, 2006

Motor Home Massacre


Rating: R for violence, sexuality, language and drug use.
Theater: unknown
DVD: 5/23/06
Runtime: 88min

Okay, so I was pretty exicted for this movie. The trailer made me think this movie would be pretty good with lots of crazy hicks and what not. It made it look like a good bad movie with horrible acting and everything. Unfortunatly, it was just horrible. I was counting the minutes 3 minutes into the movie... it would never end.....And the film....it was like they have one good camera and my home video camera to shoot the movie...and it kept switching back and forth between good picture and all fuzzy home movie footage....very bad. But the one thing this movie did have going for it was a rockin soundtrack. It starts of with Truckin lovin man by the Truckadelics. Never heard of them? Yeah neither have I but let me tell you, Truckin Lovin Man is an awesome song and worth a listen sometime (and from the song titles from their album ¬°Big in Mexico! it looks like they are a quality band).

So the basic plot? 7 friends take a "vintage" RV camping for the night. There is some crazy killer and people die. Okay so it takes 40 minutes for the kids to even get out to the woods...lame. And you will never guess who the killer is......if you just started watching the movie most of the way through. If you paid any attention at all you will figure it out. Even the 'suprise' plot twist at the end....

So the one great thing about this movie (besides the afore mentioned song), was Lincoln, the homie. Yeah, in this lovely cast of characters we have Faith (the dumb girl), Nick (Faith's boyfriend), Benji (the geeky guy who has never been laid or had a girlfriend...a tragedy I know), Sabrina (the blond who is getting over a breakup), Rodger (the jerk), Brooke (the other girl...she has no real characteristic traits), and Lincoln (Brookes boyfriend and wanna be homie). So Lincoln is awesome cause the whole ways through da movie he be talkin like he be a homie (and apparently he just started doing this as they all had a big conversation about this in one never-ending scene...). He has some of the best lines in the movie. Take this for example:

Sabrina: "How much farther is this place?"
Lincoln: "For realz bitches we gonna be kickin it in the sticks."
How great is that? It makes perfect sense! I love it! If not for him and his random comments this movie would have totally sucked. Oh wait, he wasn't that good......

The other thing of note about this movie: apparently if you are a girl and wanted to be in this movie, as my boyfriend pointed out, you have to have big boobs (and be willing to show them). Yeah. Interesting. And at one point it turned into a kinda porno, but not really. Just an extended shot that made no sense.

Okay, so the main problem with this movie? Every scene was WAY too long. If they cut the shots in half then it might have been okay. Instead we get 10 minutes of of the same thing. For example: Rodger was telling Benji that he was talking to someone on the phone. Benji said how could that be, you left your phone on my counter-cut to a couple seconds long shot of a cell phone on a counter...what, do we really need to stare at the cell phone on the counter for a long time to get that, "oh he did leave it there?" It was WAY too long.

And at the beginning of the movie, the kids are heading out to camp at this park and stop at a gas station to get some supplies. Well, then we have a half-hour long recap of the killing that took place the night before in the place where they were headed....again WAY too long, especially since we had seen most of it at the very beginning. There were 3 kids camping the night before and in the recap we see them go in their tent to smoke pot. So here is my thoughts of this scene 'Okay so they are smoking pot....and smoking....and still smoking...and smoking some more.....and still smoking...I cannot belive I am still watching this as they are still just smoking...and now the one girl is topless and smoking....when is this going to stop? still smoking.....and smoking...Please isn't it time to move on yet....apparently not...oh thank god something else (that is what went through my head. That and our 7 main characters are never going to get to the camp site and die if this flashback doesn't end soon. It is only a 90 minute movie....)

So please spare yourself the trouble and DO NOT watch this movie. It is pure torture. It was 90 minutes of my life I can never get back, so please don't waste yours. Oh and I almost forgot, the moral of this movie: You can never give up on love.

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Monday, May 08, 2006

Camp Daze aka Camp Slaughter (Screener Copy Review)


Rating: Rated R for strong violence/gore, language, some sexual content and drug use.
Theater: unknown
DVD: 4/11/06
Runtime: 94min
Now first off this is one of those movies that cannot decide what its name is. The box and beginning credits say Camp Slaughter, but the ending credits...Camp Daze....Okay, upon further review it looks like this movie was released as Camp Daze. Apparently the people who made it did no research and didn't realize till later that a year ago another movie came our called Camp Slaughter. Gotcha. Now that we have that out of the way on to the review!


So what is this movie you ask? Why it is groundhogs day meets back to the future meets Friday the 13th. Throw in some amazing acting talent and you have Camp Daze. The perfect movie right? Right.

So these 4 kids (Angela, Vade, Mario, and Jenny) are driving along in their big mother SUV taking a shortcut, when suddenly it is night and their SUV won't work anymore. The windows are bombed with mudballs (supposedly blood) and they get scared. They sleep in the car and are awoken by some kids from Camp Hiawatha. Now it is obvious that the 4 kids in the car are from the present and these camp kids are from the 80's. I mean the camp kids are wearing shorty shorts and the one girl has ribbons in her hair around her pigtails. 80's right? Like totally. The camp kids take the 4 back to camp to call for a towtruck and well... by the end of the night all the camp kids are dead! They have been stuck in the same day and night for 24 years and someone kills everyone every night! So they need the 4 kids from the present to help them kill the killers so they can escape the hell that is August 24, 1981.

Now this movie has it all: A lot of fake blood and special effects from the halloween department of the grocery store in October. You know, the make your own open wounds and such. Yeah. Not realistic at all but an A for effort. An incredibly awesome and realistic fight scene at the end. A totally rad flashback sequence when we learn what happened that first night. And a ton of great quotes. Here are 2 of my favorites:

Vade responding to Jenny when she asked him if they were lost: "No way. I know these roads like the back of my dick." (Totally awesome!)
Camp guys upon seeing the SUV: "You guys from the army base or something? Must be if you're driving that tank!"
And there are lots more (like, oh my god, the one girl, Nicole, like totally talks like she is from the 80's. Like she is totally rad and not some total dweeb-o-rama. )

For all that this movie does have, it raised a lot of questions for me. Questions like, why does no one know who the killers are? You think after reliving (and knowing you are reliving) the same day for 24 years you would have figured it out. If you know when you are going to be killed, why not do something different? Go somewhere else? Foil the killers? Maybe kill them? These are all questions I had while watching the movie that they kinda just copped out and said we can do nothing-we tried but can't change it. All without really explaining how they tried or anything more. So for that, this movie could never get a 5 heads rating. And although it is super totally awesome, it could use more blatant 80's things. I love the 80's... I would never had known that is when these kids were from if they hadn't plastered the walls with 80's calendars and such. Well maybe I would have, but it could have been totally way cooler if they exaggerated it more (instead of just having everyone go to Goodwill and grab something 80's-esque). I mean check out the 80's kids:

I mean would you have know they were from the 80's? Probably not. Especially with 80's stuff being in style not long ago.

The other major flaw of this movie is that it feels like it is going to turn into a porno at any moment, but it does not. The guys are all like hey whatcha doing to the other guys (especially Mario and the one camp guy Ruben....I totally thought they were at least going to make out. It totally felt like they were going to get it on, but it never happened. Sad). Maybe it was just me, but it had gay porno written all over it. It was kinda disappointing. I think 80's groundhog day, back to the future, friday the 13th porno would be even better! Oh well. All in all I would give this one a 3.5 if we had half heads, but since we don't I suppose a low 4 will do.

porno?


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Friday, May 05, 2006

A Sound of Thunder



Rating: PG-13 - Sci-Fi Violence, Partial Nudity and Language
Theater: 2005
DVD: 4/28/06
Runtime: 103min
Now it seems like this movie should have been out in theatres at first glance. I mean it is based off that Ray Bradbury story. You know the one where the people go back in time and one person steps on a butterfly and changes the present? Yeah, I am not all that familiar with the story since I read it so long ago, but a friend says that when they get back, a Hitler-esque guy is in power instead... okay. And Ben Kingsley is in this movie as well. At least it has some star power (I mean most people probably have at least heard of him, which is more that most of the actors in the movies I review on here...)

This movie is a good bad movie (good if you are in the mood for a bad movie, but not bad as in I hate this and it is torture to watch, bad as in this is awesome since it is so bad--the best kind of bad).

So in the future (2055) there is a Time Safari company that will let you go back in time and shoot a t-rex for a lot of money (the catch being that you have to stay on a path, don't touch anything, and the t-rex has to be killed seconds before it would die naturally.. so you are not really changing anything). There is the leader, our hero of the movie, Travis Ryer, who is working at Time Safari to try and get the dna of animals so he can recreate them since, apparenlty by 2055, there are no more animals left on earth. He works for the very diabolical Charles Hutton (Ben Kingsley) who is only in it for the money. We later find he turned off some of the safety precautions thus enabling the present to be destroyed by the past unless Travis can save the day. The other main character is Sonia Rand who built a super computer TAMI who is basically the time machine; she knows everything.

So, in the beginning of the movie, Sonia breaks in and throws a fit at a party the Time Safari company is hosting, since she knows they are going to ruin the future. Travis is puzzled by her actions and decides to investigate and try to tell her that everything will be fine and that Time Safari will not destroy the present.

Now this movie has a ton of very realistic computer images. I mean the t-rex... amazing. When the people are walking around outside, it is like they are really there-not like they are walking but not really getting anywhere making it obvious that they are not really there. It doesn't really look like tv shows where they have a blue screen and someone running through a field or something; obviously fake. That is not what this is like. It's great. And the people that made this movie have an amazing imagination. For example: with the cars of the future, they did not just use cars of today and make them a little rounder. No. I mean they look completely different....

So in the movie there is one "jump" (when the people go back in time to kill the t-rex, that is called a jump) that goes horribly wrong. Why? Because the stupid underling worker spilled some water stuff on the one gun whom everyone is attached to (no one can fire till this one gun fires) and it won't fire. So then they have to try and kill the t-rex without it so that the t-rex doesn't eat them. This is a fantastic scene. I mean Travis is running away from the group with a flashlight trying to lure the t-rex away. Then another girl runs the other way, and just as Travis is going to be eaten she yells and so the t-rex says, "okay lets go after her instead". Then when she is about the be eaten, Travis gets the t-rex's attention and the t-rex says, "okay lets get him instead" and so on and so forth. It is a close call but they think they make it back without harming anything.

Then the next day they wake up and something weird is going on. The plants are going crazy. So Travis goes to see Sonia since she is so smart she probably knows what is going on. Sonia is pissed, because she was just telling Travis something like this would happen. So while Travis is at Sonia's she explains how there are now 'time waves' that come barreling through (that look amazing.....) and change things. Because something was changed in the past, whatever was changed is slowly having an effect on the present and things are changing-obviously for the worse. Time wave after time wave come, and there are apparently not many more waves till humans are affected.

Sonia and Travis and a few others set out to try and go back in time and fix it. Well that doesn't work, because they can not get back to where they need to due to the time waves (there are some pretty good high tech effect here..lots of computery stuff to explain what is going on that you totally wouldn't understand without the effects.....) So Sonia figures that she can try and send Travis back further in time then slingshot him forward to where he needs to be. With the help of the super computer TAMI. But first they have to figure out what they have to fix.

So the rest of the movie is just these people wandering though the city that is turning into a crazy place till they find all the people who went on that jump to see what someone brought back. Now here is where we really see the imagination of the producers. I mean the crazy animals they come up with...really amazing (apparently if this were to happen in reality, dinosaurs, apes, and eventually bats would all combine and form a dinosaur bat ape thing. Yeah nothing else. And what we turn into....crazy. Oh wait there is this sea monster...but that is pretty lame and dies pretty quickly).

And the ending is pretty good. Who would have thought that you can carry a time machine in a handy dandy little suitcase? Not me. Overall, A Sound of Thunder is a pretty good bad movie. The acting is so so. The visuals are awful. The story is pretty poor. And no imagination on the producers' part. All in all worth watching. And having a good laugh at.


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Monday, May 01, 2006

Swarmed!



Rating: PG-13 for disturbing images
Theater: N/A
DVD: 5/2/06
Runtime: 89min
So I am sure this will be shorter than my other reviews. Why? This movie was just eh. Not good, but not bad.

So the basic plot? Well a scientist looking for a better way to exterminate wasps creates this formula that gives the wasps way more venom than normal (Thanks to the handy dandy "high tech" graphs and charts they have, it is shown that it is 7.2 times normal, otherwise you would just have to believe them that it is higher than normal. Also the microscope view of the venom is pretty... Someone took a lot of time-or five minutes-to draw it up). So then this stupid exterminator guy uses this new stuff on the wasps he is trying to get rid of after the scientist specifically tells him not to. Then there is a swarm of wasps attacking people and killing them. Now all of this is happening when this small town in Indiana is hosting the first annual national burger cook-off! With some guy who is the sole sponsor with his 'tasty sauce' and of course there is corruption and such. The tasty sauce guy bribes the town mayor and whatnot, so then no one wants to cancel the event because of the publicity and they want the money it will bring. Yeah.

So I looked up movies about killer bees and such and found that there are a lot that have been made. But look up wasps and there are significantly less movies (although two versions of Wasp Woman come up, which I have not seen but really must). So last night, while watching Swarmed, all I could think about was what is the difference between a bee and a wasp? Wasps sting repeatedly. That makes sense. They can live longer so they would be better to have a horror movie based on them. But bees have the market.

Okay so Swarmed was anticlimactic and blah. There were a lot of shots from the wasps eye view (although when in this view they made noises like whales... I was confused by this... Do they really make this noise? I never heard of such a thing attributed to them...) which never got old. Also, the mass quantity of computer animated wasps was nice, as were the "high tech" computers and such that they used. But the best part of the movie was in the beginning when they show the mayor's office. There is a deer head mounted on the one wall and an American flag on the other. Stereotypical small town (although it was interesting to note that the mayors assistant's voice was overdubbed... not sure why exactly...). The other good scene is near the end when the wasps are attacking the cook-off crowd. Well, in most of the scenes there are no actual (or computer generated) wasps, just people running around like the people in The Birds. It was great. So if you feel up to a not so good/not so bad made for TV type movie about killer wasps, well... this movie is worth a shot. Or maybe not.


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Sunday, April 30, 2006

3 Extremes, Vol. 2 (Saam Gaang)




Rating: R
Theater: 2002
DVD: 4/25/06
Runtime: 128min
There is nothing extreme about this movie... unless you want to count that it is extremely boring. It is the work of three of Asia's greatest horror masterminds (they each have their own short movie hence the three extremes). Now I was quite excited to see this one as I had seen the preview for the first Three Extremes and it looked amazing. Unfortunately this one is not amazing and when watching the preview afterwards, well it looks like a much better movie than it actually was. I think people in Asia (I know that is a very general statement, but well that is where these 'masterminds' are from....) must have a much different definition of horror.

This is one of those Lion's Gate films. Now nothing really against Lion's Gate, they may have some good movies that they have released, but once you start watching some of these screener copies of horror movies, you find that they will release anything. I mean absolutely anything. Make a home movie on your video camera. They will release it. Seriously. Anyways...

So the first short film is Memories by Kim Jee-Woon. The first five minutes were really good. They hooked me in and I was wondering, "what will happen next?". It was sort of creepy and there was great potential for a good movie that may even scare you (which I think is very rare). But unfortunately, Kim Jee-Woon decided to do nothing with it and just bore the audience instead. There is this guy whose wife has left him for some reason. And the wife wakes up on the street with no memory but her home phone number. So she is trying to get home and he is trying to find her. He keeps seeing weird things that aren't really there (only one gory scene where he sees his wife putting her finger in her head through her hair. Kinda cool, but would have been better had the plot been there to support it). The ending was a surprise (? yeah right. If you were still watching by the end and hadn't figured it out well... I can't help you. It definitely wasn't shocking) and loops back around to the beginning. All in all I would watch the first five minutes and then fast forward to the third movie.

The second movie is pure torture to watch. Maybe that is why it is in this collection. It never ends! It is called The Wheel by Nang Nak (based off of this one short movie, I never want to see another movie by this person as long as I live... It was that awful--especially after watching Kim Jee-Woons movie). The basis for this movie is that there are these artists skilled in Hen Lakorn Lek who perform stories using very fancy puppets. They are rich and live the good life. In contrast, there are those skilled in the art of Kohn who perform the same stories but wear masks instead. They are poor and live in poverty. Apparently, there is a curse on the puppets that only their true master can use them or else they will destroy everything. So this is the story of a troupe of Kohn dancers who get a puppet that does not belong to them. People die, things burn, and you fall asleep watching it all happen. If it wasn't so long and drawn out, it might have been good. Oh who am I kidding, maybe if it was 30 seconds long I could have stood watching it. But instead it was 40. seriously, do not even try watching this one or you will wish the puppet would kill you instead.....

The third movie was the best of the three. Not a horror movie per say, but still tolerable to watch (especially after the torture you have endured thus far--if anyone actually does try to watch Three Extremes 2 then at least fast forward to this one and give it a try. You might enjoy it). It is called Going Home and is by Peter Ho-Sun Chan. The story goes that there is a dad and son that move into an apartment complex that is going to be torn down in a month. There is only one other family that lives there. The dad works overnight so he leaves the son home by himself. One day, the dad wakes up from his sleep and cannot find his son. He convinces himself that the other family took him and ends up being locked up in the other guys apartment.

Now, the other guy seems crazy and has his dead wife in a bathtub full of oils and potions. He has been keeping her like this and bathing her and basically keeping her looking good for a few years and she is due to wake up in a few days (they worked out this crazy plan before she died of cancer). Once she wakes up the non-crazy dad can leave, but till then he must stay. Well I do not want to ruin the ending as it was a decent movie, but you should check this one out and see what happens. Pretty good, but not worth watching the other two movies for.


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